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17th St. High Heel Race

(WUSA9) -- Thousands made their way to Dupont Circle to watch drag queens race down 17th Street Tuesday night.

It was the 27th annual 17th St. High Heel Race in which high-heel wearing drag queens race to the finish. Click through these photos to see the festivities.

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People protest removal of flowers from Metro Station

WASHINGTON (WUSA9) -- Protesters gathered at Dupont Metro Station today, officials said.

WUSA9's Russ Ptacek was on the scene where protesters had suspended a 'lightweight frame made of plastic tubing' from a rope over the escalators at Q street entrance for Dupont Metro Station. The people were protesting the removal of flowers from the station a few months ago.

The incident happened around 9:30 on Sunday morning. Due to security concerns, the Q Street entrance was briefly closed and protesters were asked to remove the dangling box.  The entrance re-opened at 10:30 a.m., officials said.

Police: Two charged for fatal shooting in DC

WASHINGTON (WUSA9) -- Two people have been arrested and charged in connection to a fatal shooting of a 28-year-old man in DC.

Freddy Bernard Hawkins of Northeast was killed on Saturday morning. Police responded to the sound of gunshots at 22 Florida Avenue, NW. When they arrived they found two male victims suffering from gunshot wounds and a vehicle with four people inside, fleeing the scene. The vehicle pursuit ended on Interstate 695 near the northbound ramp to Interstate 295, officials said.

Justine Wilson, 20 is being charged with 'Murder II while Armed and Assault with the Intent to Kill'. Reese Williams, 23 of Southeast, DC is being charged with 'Accessory After the Fact.', officials said.

The second victim is expected to survive his injuries, police said.   

Banneker soccer player commits to healthy eating at Common Good Community Garden

Reporting by Diane Roberts

WASHINGTON (WUSA 9) -- Gessika Bridgeforth is a sophomore at Banneker High School in the District.

She says playing soccer makes her feel free.

"She's very, very aggressive, very persistent and always comes back very hard," said coach Kate Mansfield.

And even though Banneker loses more games than they win, Gessika loves playing for her team, although the sport isn't her only passion. After school, Number Six trades in the soccer field for the field of food -- Common Good Community Garden -- which grows food for the city's low-income population. 

So far this year, they've harvested 4,600 pounds of food. Besides their small staff, the farm employs 16 kids as part of their fall youth program, and Gessika is one of them.

Top 10 DC area French restaurants

WASHINGTON (USA TODAY) -- Do you love French food? Or is it the ambiance that draws you in? 

The experience of dining at a French restaurant can be just as good as the food -- the multiple courses; the relaxed, go-at-your-own-pace, slowness of enjoying a meal bite for bite; the ambiance that's so uniquely Francais, whether the restaurant mimics a French country inn or a Paris bistro.

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There are several restaurants in the district that offer both a delicious menu AND the ambiance of dining in France. The newest French restaurant on the DC dining scene is le Diplomate. Sit under the red awning long enough and you'll imagine you're dining al fresco at a Parisian cafe.

National Zoo Panda cub receives her first vaccine

WASHINGTON (WUSA9) -- The giant panda cub at the National Zoo received her first vaccine today after a veterinary exam.

Zoo officials say she is very healthy and now weighs 6.73 pounds. She is 16.5 inches (42 centimeters) around her belly and 19.29 inches (49 centimeters) long.  

She has also started crawling now. The mother of the cub Mei Xiang can be seen outside in the mornings around 8:00 a.m. when she leaves the den and the cub to go eat, zoo officials said. 

Ballou Football Coach Jason Lane recounts days as Go-Go musician

WASHINGTON (WUSA 9) -- Jason Lane is very comfortable banging out tunes on a piano and barking out orders on the gridiron, but why is the coach of a 3-4 football team in such good spirits? Easy, Jason Lane is at peace.

"It's safe to say I am at home," said Lane.

Home is Ballou. Lane graduated from the school in Southeast in 1988 and then the odyssey began.

The piano man was once the drummer boy of the DC famed Junkyard Band. In Go-go style, Lane played buckets, that's right, buckets, along with traditional percussion. In the late 80's and 90's the band often packed the Capital Centre.

"We had a string of runs that was phenomenal," remembered Lane, who also played with megastars like MC Hammer and Heavy D & the Boyz.

In 1994, it was time for a change. Lane became officer Lane, on the same streets in which he grew up. It was a steadier lifestyle, but the coach said he was morally conflicted.