John McCaslin

The Creative Coalition is back in Washington today to encourage members of Congress and the White House to support federal funding for art and arts education.

"It is not just an investment in this generation, it is an intrinsic asset in the future of the United States — the positive impact of the arts in a citizen's life is vital to a thriving democracy," says executive director Robin Bronk.

A few of the recognizable faces passing through the hallowed hallways on their rounds today are Tim Daly ("Private Practice," "The Sopranos," "Grey's Anatomy"), Lauren Holly ("CSI," "Chicago Hope," "Dumb and Dumber"), Tyne Daly ("Judging Amy"), Laura Innes ("ER"), Tim Blake Nelson ("Syriana," "O Brother, Where Art Thou?"), and Richard Schiff ("The West Wing," "I Am Sam," "The Lost World: Jurassic Park").

Top grades

After a five-year hiatus, School Night, founded in 1990 by business and civic leader Joseph E. Robert Jr., returns this evening to the Washington Convention Center to award $100,000 to three deserving D.C. public schools.

This year's event is chaired by Washington philanthropist Sheila Johnson. Look for performances by Grammy-winning rhythm-and-blues singer John Legend, with special appearances by chef Todd Gray of Equinox and Septime Webre of the Washington Ballet.

D.C. Public School Chancellor Michelle A. Rhee and state Superintendent of Education Deborah A. Gist will be on deck to congratulate the winning schools.

John McCaslin

John McCaslin is a contributing columnist on and author of Inside The Beltway: Offbeat Stories, Scoops, and Shenanigans from around the Nation's Capital .

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