Learn How to Throw a Jab and Fry a Turkey — All in One Day
one knows everything, but everybody knows something. While it may sound like a Karl Marx-inspired bumper sticker, the slogan is the organizing principle behind Saturday’s Learn-a-Palooza, a first-time event that was born on an Adams Morgan neighborhood e-mail list two months ago and has blossomed into an all-day fest o’ learning. It includes free 30- and 60-minute classes on whatever volunteers want to teach — from belly-dance aerobics and Pilates to how to fix a bike flat or fry a turkey.
Learn-a-Palooza founder Rosalyn Lemieux, 31, of the District was inspired by the egalitarian, community-driven multimedia art fair Artomatic (through May 20 in Arlington). She thought that if art was replaced by classes, the benefit would be twofold: fostering a diverse, close-knit community and drawing more people to local businesses and centers.
The original plan was to house the event in one building, but organizers opted to spread it out, mainly in the Columbia Heights, Adams Morgan, U Street and Dupont Circle neighborhoods.
“We chose neighborhoods that we live in and that we felt were in transition,” Lemieux says. “There has been so much economic development, and while that can be really great for these areas, it also creates a real tension [between longtime residents and the people who are moving in] because things get more expensive, and so many changes take place.”
People may volunteer to teach up until the day of the event, Lemieux says. “There’s so much potential in this. I would like to see, rather than 37 workshops, 200 or . . . even more,” she says. “It takes nothing to hold a 30-minute workshop, and it’s great for your business. We’d like to connect more with the Latino community, too.”
She hopes that if the event does well, it will spin off into other neighborhoods. “We’re certainly encouraging anyone to take up the model,” Lemieux says. “We’ve gotten calls from Seattle and Albany, Ga., on how they can start their own Learn-a-Palooza, and ours hasn’t even happened yet!”
To see a schedule, teach a class or offer a venue for one, visit
City Fitness instructor Nino Malong will teach boxing basics during Learn-a-Palooza.