While you’re in the U Street neighborhood, check out some of DC’s best spots for live music. The 9:30 Club (815 V St., NW; 202-265-0930), just a block north of U near Ninth Street, features many national rock, punk, hip-hop, and country acts as well as some local bands. A block away at the Velvet Lounge (915 U St., NW; 202-462-3213), you’ll find mostly local and lesser-known acts of similar genres. Or stop in at Bohemian Caverns (2001 11th St., NW; 202-299-0800) for a night of jazz at a legendary local spot where Duke Ellington, Louis Armstrong, Billie Holiday, Miles Davis, John Coltrane, and others used to perform.
Along 14th Street, just a few blocks south of Marvin, more live music abounds. Stop by the Black Cat (1811 14th St., NW; 202-667-7960), a nightclub, bar, and live-music venue popular with local hipsters, or HR-57 (1610 14th St., NW; 202-667-3700), a nonprofit jazz and blues club heavy on local talent. Check the Web sites for each venue for showtimes and ticket or cover prices; advance ticket purchase is not required but encouraged at the Black Cat and 9:30 Club, especially for popular bands.
12 AM: Midnight Snack
Before calling it a night, there’s one more place nearby to check out. Ben’s Chili Bowl (1213 U St., NW; 202-667-0909) has been a favorite of Washingtonians since 1958, when legends such as Duke Ellington, Miles Davis, Ella Fitzgerald, Cab Calloway, Nat King Cole, and Martin Luther King Jr. frequented the spot. The most famous dish at this diner-style comfort-food joint is the chili half smoke, DC’s signature sausage swimming in Ben’s warm chili. It’s reportedly Bill Cosby’s guilty pleasure.
This busy late-night spot is open until 2 AM Monday through Thursday and 4 AM Friday and Saturday. On Sunday, it closes at 8 PM.
SUNDAY: GOLF AND GEORGETOWN
Wake up early for a hearty breakfast and a round of golf. Then, it’s off to Georgetown for shopping, canoes, and a cold beer before heading home.
9 AM: Breakfast
Head to the Adams Morgan neighborhood and settle in to a red vinyl booth at the Diner (2453 18th St., NW; 202-232-8800), an updated version of the 24/7 classic. The menu runs the gamut from big breakfast platters to seven variations on the grilled-cheese sandwich. If you’re craving one at this hour, go for the Yorkshire, with cheddar, roast beef, and horseradish.
10 AM: Tee Time
Head out for a round of golf to East Potomac Park, located between the Washington Channel and the Potomac River just south of the Jefferson Memorial. The best way to get there is to drive—there’s free parking—or catch a cab. With an 18-hole course, two 9-hole courses, a driving range, and a miniature-golf course, golfers of all strokes and skill levels can find something to do. Greens fees range from $12 to $30, and carts and clubs are available for rent. Miniature golf, which opens at 11 AM, costs $6 a person. The courses get packed when the weather’s nice, so plan ahead and reserve a tee time; the course takes reservations up to seven days in advance. Make reservations online here or call 202-863-4444.
For more ideas of where to golf in the DC area, click here.
1 PM: Lunch
The last stop of your weekend is DC’s Georgetown neighborhood. Grab lunch at a Martin’s Tavern (1264 Wisconsin Ave., NW; 202-333-7370), a Georgetown institution where many big-name politicos have fueled up over the years. Much of the menu is the same as it was when JFK proposed to Jackie in booth number three. Focus on the classics: oysters (raw, Rockefeller, fried, or in a creamy stew), burgers, and juicy steaks and chops. Try to save room for English-style bread pudding studded with raisins and drowned in warm bourbon/butterscotch sauce.
2:30 PM: Shopping or Canoeing?
Georgetown is a great place to do a little shopping—yes, your wife or girlfriend will be expecting a gift when you get home—or take a spin in a canoe. For shopping, you’ll find plenty of stores and boutiques along M Street, Northwest, west of 31st Street, and along Wisconsin Avenue, heading north from M Street. Retail chains such as H&M, Urban Outfitters, and J. Crew have found homes here alongside smaller boutiques such as A Mano (for leather goods), and Wink (known for carrying designer jeans).
If shopping isn’t your thing, challenge the guys to a canoe or kayak race on the Potomac or paddle across the river to Theodore Roosevelt Island for a hike around the 88-acre park. Rentals are available at boathouses along the Georgetown waterfront, including Thompson Boat Center and Jack’s Boathouse, rent canoes by the hour and day. Thompson charges $8 an hour or $22 for the day; canoes must be returned by 6 PM. Jack’s charges $10 for each of the first and second hours or $35 for a full day; canoes must be back by sunset.
5 PM: Last Call
Before you hit the road, head to the Tombs (1226 36th St., NW; 202-337-6668), a sports-themed pub popular with Georgetown University students. End your DC visit with a plate of Buffalo wings or a pile of nachos and order up a round of beers for one last toast to manhood.
Looking for more great things to do? Check out our other itineraries in our Plan a Visit section.