Neighbors young and old gathered to enjoy corn on the cob, burgers, dogs and music, and to support a neighborhood institution: Scheele's Market.
Earlier this year the Friends of Scheele’s agreed to fund a $70,000 covenant for the space including a renovation of the corner grocery store at 1331 29th St. NW.
As the night wore on attendees continued to take out their checkbooks to do their part to meet that obligation.
Mike Peabody, one of the driving forces behind the covenant and Friends of Scheele's, told Patch that he was sure they would reach their goal, and soon. Though the deadline had been for the end of June, Peabody said he felt they could probably get an extension if they weren't quite there.
"We're dealing with a very deal-able guy," said Peabody with a smile, despite it being one of the hotest evenings of the summer season thus far.
That "guy" is Jordan O'Neill, who owns the building that houses Scheele's.
Though he could, by right, develop the space into a large, single-family home, O'Neill has worked with Friend's of Scheele's to help maintain a part of East Village history.
In his remarks to the community Thursday, O'Neill joked that Peabody along with Marilyn Melkonian had "strong-armed" him into the deal.
During a brief program Thursday, Ward 2 Councilman Jack Evans congratulated the Friends of Scheele's and in particular Peabody.
"You really brought back a neighborhood gem that was about to be gone" said Evans.
"This is a joyous, but poignant celebration, what a relief it is that our treasured market with continue" said Peabody to cheers.
But he noted it was sad that the Lees who had run the store for 20 years had retired recently.
"The sense of goodwill and friendship generated in this store had, in a real way, flowed out to our entire community and rendered living in these several blocks more of a family experience," said Peabody in thanking the Lees for their time in Georgetown.
Kye Lee received a plaque from the community and said about the Georgetowners who frequented his store, "They accepted us and they stood behind us. I don't know how to say thank you."
Peabody also introduced the new corner store operator, Dongjuk Kim, who recently signed a new year 10-year lease for the corner grocery store, and asked the crowd to make sure they supported his business just as they did the Lees.