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Free rock, philosophy, and spoken word this week

Monday, August 30
Roots rockers These United States bring their energetic twang to the Kennedy Center’s Millennium Stage tonight, pedal steel guitar and all. But fear not, alternative-music fans: The band has a rock streak in it a mile wide. 6 PM.

Tuesday, August 31
Want to see a production of Shakespeare’s Twelfth Night for free? Of course you do! Enter Shakespeare Theatre Company’s Free for All online ticket lottery between midnight and 1 PM today. If you get a lucky-winner e-mail, you’re in. Each winner receives two tickets. 7:30.

Wednesday, September 1
The problem with most philosophy classes is that they end right as you’re getting to the good stuff. That’s where Michael Kellogg comes in. The author of Three Questions We Never Stop Asking is discussing his work synthesizing the eternal debates on knowledge, the divine, and goodness at Politics and Prose. Kellogg compiled philosophical arguments from some of the greats (Kant, Nietzsche, Aristotle, Plato, Heidegger) and pitted them against one another in hopes of finding a higher truth. 7 PM.

Thursday, September 2
Five years after Hurricane Katrina, the nation’s response to environmental disasters is still being scrutinized. Robert Verchick, environmental-law chair at Loyola University’s College of Law, presents his take on the debate at Busboys and Poets. His findings are the subject of a new book, Facing Catastrophe: Environmental Action for a Post-Katrina World. 6:30.

Friday, September 3
A mash-up of written, spoken, and sung words is what you’ll find at the Writer’s Center in Bethesda tonight. Up-and-coming author Aryn Kyle and poet Allison Benis White are teaming with John Davis (of the defunct band Q and Not U) to provide the audience with an evening of verse, prose, and music. 8 PM.

Saturday, September 4
Ready for some heartache and incredible guitar solos? It’s the 22nd annual DC Blues Festival. Get your share of award-winning blues musicians and hands-on workshops at Carter Barron Ampitheatre. Gates open at 11:30 AM.

Sunday, September 5
See the film that started it all. The Land Before Time (read: The Original Land Before Time)—will be screened for the young (and young at heart) at National Harbor at sunset. Lawn chairs are recommended.

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