If you were heartbroken when the quirky Canadian pop gem the Unicorns broke up, then you should check out their most recent reincarnation in the form of Islands. They’re still churning out melodic, weird tunes that will charm you. They play tonight at the Black Cat. 8 PM; $15.
Friday, May 23: Hillyer Art Space (9 Hillyer Ct., NW) hosts an International Arts & Artists Evening fundraiser tonight, with DJs Will Eastman and Gavin Holland. Check out art, sip drinks, watch live video art created on the spot, and mingle with art hipsters for just $10 at the door. 7 to 11 PM.
The Shakespeare Theatre Company’s Free for All, that annual rite of free Shakespeare plays in Carter Barron Amphitheatre, runs May 22 through June 1. This year the play is Hamlet; click here for how to get free tickets.
It’s the first-ever Bike Prom! The dance party, held at the Black Cat, encourages bikers to come out and party in celebration of their love of biking. The $5 cover charge goes to the Washington Area Bicyclist Association. Formal prom wear isn’t necessary, but the organization says “costumes are encouraged.” What sort of bike-themed costumes you might want to wear is up to you. 9:30 PM.
The drive to Hard Times Cafe in Woodbridge is worth the effort for its Guitar Hero night. In addition to the giant projection screen, there are tournaments for cash and other prizes for medium- and expert-level competitors. Guitar Hero night is Friday from 9 to closing. Full band gear is available. Get more Rock Band and Guitar Hero nights in our always-being-updated guide.
Saturday, May 24: You know it’s nearly summer when the Delaplane Strawberry Festival takes place, as it is this weekend. Drive an hour out of DC and get a bake sale, crafts, live music, hayrides, and a strawberry-eating competition (and, of course, lots of strawberry creations to sample). 10 AM to 5 PM; $15 per car; 11012 Edmonds La. Meanwhile, check out our guide to berry picking in the area.
As part of its ’60s Film Week Revolution, the DC Film Institute is showing Easy Rider at the Goethe-Institut this evening. For $10 at the door, you get drinks, mingling, and a screening of the iconic film starring Dennis Hopper, Peter Fonda, and Jack Nicholson. RSVP here. 8 and 10 PM.
Sunday, May 25: It’s been months since we first purchased Seawolf’s record, and it’s still one of our favorites. Pitchfork be damned, we find “Middle Distance Runner” to be quite charming. Currently touring with the Jealous Girlfriends, Seawolf plays at the Rock and Roll Hotel (1353 H St. NE ) tonight. 8 PM; $12.
It’s Black Pride weekend—a weekend for GLBT African-Americans—here in DC, and a performance by American Idol winner Fantasia is the big event. She performs tonight at Avenue (649 New York Ave., NW); doors open at 9. There’ll also be a huge dance party as well as other performers. Tickets are $35 in advance but double that amount at the door. Tickets can be found here.
It’s Memorial Day this weekend, so it must be time for the National Symphony Orchestra’s annual free concert on the Capitol’s West Lawn. Get patriotic with performers including singer Gladys Knight and actor Gary Sinise as they honor military servicemembers 8 PM; gates open at 5, and you might want to get there early to stake out a good spot or have a picnic. East Capitol and First Sts.
What are you doing this weekend? Let us know in the comments.