Turning Natural cashier

Many small business owners have worked towards keeping the retail strip on Martin Luther King Ave SE vibrant. Stretching down MLK from Good Hope to Howard Road, the strip has barber shops, banks, restaurants, and bars. Turning Natural is a welcome addition, adding a healthy eating option to the mix. Located across the street from the (currently under construction) future location of Busboys and Poets, this beautifully decorated retail gem offers fruit smoothies, power drinks, Jamaican-style veggie patties, and more to the discerning customer looking for something that tastes good and is good for you.

Turning Natural is owned by Black female entrepreneur Jenni Evans. However, the idea for Turning Natural was crafted by her late mother, Annette Turner, who turned to a holistic lifestyle as part of her fight against cancer. Although Turner eventually lost her battle with cancer (after nine years of living cancer-free, due partly to her lifestyle changes), her daughter kept Ms. Turner’s dream alive by opening the first Turning Natural at 1380 H St NE. After initial success there, she opened her second location east of the river, at 2025 Martin Luther King Jr Ave SE. Both stores have become roaring successes, but her Southeast location (mere steps from the iconic “Big Chair” sculpture) also represents another positive step towards the revival of a historic retail strip (alongside other establishments such as Uniontown Bar and Grill and We Act Radio).

Turning Natural decor

Turning Natural is run by upbeat staff and has a vibrant decor (the most prominent color in which is, naturally, green, in keeping with the wide number of vegetarian options). Hip-hop has a clear influence on the shop, as its offerings sport hip-hop inspired titles such as Green Latifah (a play on the stage name of iconic rapper Queen Latifah) and Swiss Beetz (a play on the name of multiplatinum hip-hop producer Swizz Beats). Other juices on the menu are named after historic figures (Muhammad Ali, Bob Marley, and “Marion Berry,” a drink named after the iconic four-time DC mayor). Finally, literary fans might favor “50 Shades of Green” as their drink of choice.

If you find yourself in Anacostia—whether visiting the Anacostia Arts Center or grabbing a drink at Uniontown—stop by Turning Natural for a healthy juice and a veggie patty.