Blind Whino SW Arts Club Overview

"Blind Whino is a new landmark in a old building in a changing neighborhood. What it has done for the northeastern corner of Southwest has been amazing. It's brought vitality to a corner few ever visited. It's a towering bookend to the thriving Southwest Arts District, and a vivacious heartbeat to an emerging quadrant ready for center stage! It's everything and more than what the neighborhood thought it was getting when the project started." - Shannon Vaughn, Editor-in-Chief Southwester Magazine

Over the next few years, the Southwest Waterfront will transform into an impressive, interactive neighborhood bringing new restaurants & retail, new offices & event spaces, and even new museums & sports arenas; making this the most diverse, unique square mile development in the smallest quadrant of the city. Below highlights some of the exciting plans forthcoming...



A revised PUD application for the Randall School site at 65 I Street was filed on May 31, 2013 with the Zoning Commission by the Rubell Family, owners of one of the largest privately held collections of late 20th century art in America, which has had the shuttered school under contract from the Corcoran since 2010 and since then has been working on plans for the site. With the help of Bing Thom Architects, the team has come forth with a plan to preserve the three existing historic buildings along I Street for use as a contemporary art museum and other arts uses, as well as a restaurant. Other newer additions will be removed. 

The museum will be located in the original 1906 center building, once a school for African American youth in then-segregated Washington DC. Other arts-related uses will be located in the west wing; and a restaurant with outdoor seating will be in the east wing (both wings were built in 1927). Behind the center building, a new four-story addition will house additional exhibition space for the art museum.  The new addition will have exterior walls that will allow images and video to be displayed that will be visible from a large courtyard open to the public. Two 12-story towers with 550 residential units will wrap behind the historic buildings and courtyard. 

PUD Application Description:

The new twelve-story residential building will be set behind the historic Randall School. It is comprised of nine distinct blocks that are stacked around the west, north and east sides of the site and behind the historic school structures to the south. These forms enclose a publicly accessible courtyard and run parallel to H Street, the former Half Street and former First Street, thereby physically defining these streets in the neighborhood. Gaps between these building blocks emphasize their proportions and recall the slab building forms common in the Southwest neighborhood. The lower six levels of the new south west and south east building elements are cut at an angle leading into the center of the site in deference to the historic buildings. It is at these points that the entrances to the residential "towers" will be located just behind the historic buildings to the east and west. Six levels above these entries at the south side of the courtyard are two building wings that span from the perimeter of the building to columns on either side of the new museum structure. Ground floor units facing 1st Street, H Street and the courtyard will have individual entrances and private outdoor spaces along the street or at the interior courtyard. The site and public space in front of the historic buildings on I Street will be modified to make the historic buildings accessible and to provide opportunities for street side café seating. The massing concept, which evolved through a series of meetings with District agencies and the staff of the Historic Preservation Office, places a majority of the project’s density away from the historic building toward the rear of the site. The sensitive massing of the new construction allows the historic Randall School to continue to appear as a separate building along I Street, and maintain the character of the existing streetscape.

The building materials used for the residential buildings are primarily metal panels and glass arranged in an irregular format to contrast with the structured facades of the historic buildings. The main entrances will be located on the southwest and southeast corners of the buildings. Some sustainability elements include rain-water harvesting, urban forestry best-practices, and green roofs. Each residential building will have a rooftop pool and separate amenity space on the ground level. Parking for 200 vehicles will be below grade and six surface spaces along the right-away of 1st Street. Access to the parking garage and loading will be off of H Street.


As part of the plan to replace the decaying D.C. General family homeless shelter, and on the heels of community meetings, the District formally filed designs with zoning officials this week for three new facilities.

The shelters, which would house and offer services to no more than 50 families each, are located in Wards 3, 5, and 6. Below is a summary of the latest details on the proposed Southwest shelter submitted to D.C.'s Board of Zoning Adjustment, an independent, semi-judicial body that has set hearings on them for March 1. The board must approve the projects and grant zoning exemptions before construction work can begin. If all goes smoothly, the shelter will be built by summer 2019, and D.C. General will shutter by 2020.

The Southwest shelter would go up where the United Health Care Center—which serves homeless and low-income people—currently operates. That three-story building would be razed and replaced with a seven-story structure containing both shelter components and, on the cellar level, a health clinic. (These facilities would have separate entrances, the former on Delaware Avenue SW and the latter on I Street.) It has been designed by Studio Twenty Seven Architecture and Leo A Daily. The firms also collaborated on La Casa, a permanent-housing site in Columbia Heights that caters to the chronically homeless.

"The building's proposed design and massing will fit in with the architecture of the surrounding area and will provide adequate light and air to the building's residents and to occupants of surrounding properties," the District says in zoning documents. "As a primarily residential use, the emergency shelter will not produce any adverse impacts due to noise or general operations."

"Millennials favour experiences over stuff and nightclubs should benefit from that,” says Ramzi Yakob, senior strategist of the digital agency TH_NK. “But Millennials also realize that their time is the scarcest resource they have, so why would they spend their precious time revisiting the same experience every weekend?”  - Source: The Independent



I've never gotten so many Instagram likes in my life. Besides Captain White's, Blind Whino is my favorite building in SW. I dare you to fight back a smile when strolling by this converted church's dip dyed exterior and polka dot exterior. It is a building that is begging to be photographed. The building is owned by a non-profit organization which rents out the venue for exhibits, festivals, parties, live shows and artist workshops and aims to celebrate creativity in the DC area.

I recently attended the Amazing Art Jam show here and experienced an impressive mix of all things fun -- live painting, music, cocktails, pop culture art, cosplay fashion show, vintage video game arcade and more. If geeky art shows are not your thing but eating and drinking are, they also have played host to several of the Bendy Brunch series.You can check out their calendar to see their eclectic lineup!

And if you're a photographer, don't forget to bring your camera because this place is bangin'. - Kimberly S. (February 2015 Yelp Review)


Washington drew a record 20.2 million visitors last year, with increases in international and domestic visitors, tourism officials announced Monday. The tourism bureau Destination DC said the city drew an all-time high number of tourists in 2014. The group released data on international visitors showing a 16 percent increase in overseas visitors, totaling 1.9 million international tourist Source: ABC News



For living in DC for almost a year, how did I just discover this place?!? Blind Whino is a beautiful old church turned into an artistic world that holds an assortment of events!! I went here for the Peace, Love, Yoga Festival (Day Event) and the Cherry Blast (Night Event) - both offering two different experiences. 

With two floors and several rooms, Blind Whino is the perfect place for any type of event. There are different rooms with several art pieces in the downstairs and the upstairs is just one big room with beautiful murals and art painted on the walls! During the day, the colors of this old church really shine and it's overall just a beautiful and mythical sight. To have a yoga festival here, is probably one of the best ideas ever! On the first floor, it was decorated with cherry blossom paper petals and so many whimsical images. It was really a sight to see while doing YOGA!! 

And in the night, the colors are not only trippy but it sets the tone for a fun dance party. After going here for the cherry blast, I would go here again in a heart beat!! With a glass of wine, I enjoyed looking through art and dancing in such a colorful and urban-esque environment. Also, huge highlight is the cool winded stair cases and labyrinth like architecture. Wasn't the best idea to run down these with a few drinks in me, but love the structure of this place! Yes, it does get pretty hot in here, but heck, who can say they partied in an old now super hip and colorful church!  Thank you Blind Whino for such a great experience - TIL WE MEET AGAIN.
 - Eric Joseph D. (June 2015 Yelp Review)


Lined with live music venues and clubs, U Street—affectionately known as Black Broadway at its pinnacle—has long been a major artery in the heart of the DMV’s music and arts scene. In the 90s, the Kaffa House, Bar Nun and State of the Union open mics (among many others) brought lyricists of all types together. A decade later, the Up and Up Open Mic at Liv Nightclub on U Street, run by Truth Hall of renowned trio Gods’illa, created a space where it wasn’t rare to find the likes of RaTheMC, Kokayi and Uptown XO kicking it. Today, aside from a few events like Uptown Tuesdays at Pure and the legendary Spit Dat, the scene is more fragmented and DIY. Organizations and festivals like Trillectro, Broccoli City Festival, Will Rap 4 Food, MadeInTheDMV, and Bombay Knox throw one-off events, while area acts and collectives like M.I.L.F., Parallel Diamonds, and After F are not shy about throwing their own showcases in true DIY fashion. Venues like Southwest DC church-turned-art-space Blind Whino, the Anacostia Arts Center, and the Northeast DC warehouse space Union Arts exist alongside 100-person pop-ups in alleys and homes.

But new neighbors and police hostility have pushed go-go artists farther out of the city, and with them has gone the ubiquity of its sound. Notable acts like Oddisee and Logic have found success outside of the DMV without go-go (although Oddisee and his group Diamond District do subtly incorporate its rhythms), and it seems every triumphant departure over the years encourages another to emerge from the shadows of the bounce beat to create something uniquely theirs that’s still representative of home. - Noisey


Jack Daniels & Hip Hop Star Jadakiss

PepsiCo x Lipton Brisk & Grammy Award Winning Roc Nation Artist DJ Mustard

Hennessy & Grammy Award Winning R&B Star Anthony Hamilton

CIROC & Grammy Award Winning Singer & Songwriter Bridget Kelly


750 Patrons >