Columbia Pike Recipes for You

Columbia Pike Recipes for You

Columbia Pike Recipes for You, a Community Book Art Project by Sushmita Mazumdar

Showcasing the diversity of Columbia Pike through celebrating the cuisine found there, the Columbia Pike Recipes for You bookmaking project was developed with Arlington artist Sushmita Mazumdar.  Enthusiastically received when it debuted at the “Art Island” during the 2016 Columbia Pike Blues Festival, it was decided to bring the project to additional locations including multiple visits to the Columbia Pike farmer’s market, Wakefield High School’s We Are All Arlington! event and “DIY stations” in Arlington Mill Community Center, and Arlington Central Library.

The Project: Sushmita collected recipes and stories from Columbia Pike restaurants and built a display board where the public could “see” the food diversity of The Pike through the recipes. Teaching people how to make simple yet creative books by hand added an interactive element which became the Columbia Pike Recipes for You project.

CP Recipes for You recipe cards Participants selected as many of the recipes as they wanted off the specifically designed display rack. Then Sushmita assisted in binding the loose pages into a custom and unique recipe book using supplied materials ranging from cinnamon sticks, a wooden spoon or chopsticks. Not only does this book have recipes but also contains personal stories and photos from the restaurant owners and chefs who are a part of our vibrant community. Sushmita knew that we might enjoy the cuisine from these restaurants but might not necessarily know their personal stories. She found that out of the 12 people she interviewed 10 had graduated from Arlington’s high schools or George Mason University and still served the community!


Assembling the CP Recipes for You book Make Your Own: You can make your own book by downloading the pdf(PDF, 3MB). Select the ‘double sided’ feature on your printer and do a couple test runs before you print all the pages to be sure you have the correct settings for the best results.  You will need a hole punch, a rubber band, and a 4-inch long piece of cinnamon stick, a twig from a tree or a chopstick to bind the pages together. Experiment, have fun, and don’t forget to enjoy the recipes!

The Columbia Pike Recipes for You project is a collaboration between artist Sushmita Mazumdar and Arlington Arts, the presenting arm of Arlington Cultural Affairs Division, with the participation of the Department of Parks and Recreation, Arlington County Public Library, and in part by the Columbia Pike Revitalization Organization (CPRO).

Woman holding up finished Columbia Pike Recipes for You book Program dates:

Saturday, June 18, 2016: Columbia Pike Blues Festival – Book Making with Sushmita Mazumdar

Saturday, September 18: Columbia Pike farmers market – Book Making with Sushmita Mazumdar

Friday, September 23: We Are All Arlington! at Wakefield High School – Book Making with Sushmita Mazumdar

October 1- 31: Arlington Central library – display and DIY bookmaking project

Saturday, October 16: Columbia Pike farmers market – Book Making with Sushmita Mazumdar

Saturday, November 20, 2016 : Columbia Pike farmers market – Book Making with Sushmita Mazumdar

Winter 2016/2017: Arlington Mill Community Center lobby – display and DIY bookmaking project

Cynthia Connolly and Sushmita Mazumdar with the Columbia Pike Recipes for You materials on a display board Sushmita shows recipe books to a participant Participant takes recipe pages from display board

This project, along with Columbia Pike Paint-A-Mural  project designed by Arlington artist David Amoroso (on display at Arlington Mill Community Center), the Live Screen Printing of a Columbia Pike re-usable cotton bag designed by artist JD Deardourff and Marcella Kriebel’s Color Your Future Garden were projects that informed the programming for the Arlington Art Truck that launched in 2018.