On Tuesday night, eager crowds gathered in Dupont Circle to watch one of Washington’s most fun—and glittery—Halloween traditions: the annual High Heel Drag Race. DC mayoral hopeful David Catania served as the grand marshal this year, and opponent Muriel Bowser also made an appearance.
Who finishes first isn’t really the point (it was first-timer Scott Teribury, for the record)—at the drag race, everyone’s a winner, especially the spectators, who get to take in the jaw-dropping costumes without any of the exertion. They're generally a mix of topical ensembles, Halloween classics, and some that mostly seem like an excuse to walk around covered in as many rhinestones as possible. This year we spotted Mean Girls’ Plastics-as-Santas, a turnip-toting Michelle Obama, and Racing President Woodrow Wilson, who somehow managed to balance his giant head on two-inch heels (the minimum required height).
You may indeed be able to get your animal fix via the Internet most days (cat gifs, anyone?), but when it comes to eye-popping photography, there's nothing quite like the annual Nature's Best Photography Windland Smith Rice International Awards, named after the acclaimed American photographer. Around 20,000 images were entered into this year's competition, and you can see 48 of the best shots at the National Museum of Natural History, where they're on display through the end of 2012.
Sandra Windland Smith Rice, who died in 2005 at the age of 35, had a particular interest in protecting natural wildlife, and aimed to make it more accessible to humans through photography. To see more photographs, or to enter your own work in the 2013 contest, visit naturesbestphotography.com. You can see a video that accompanies the exhibition here. For more information about the exhibition, visit the Natural History Museum's website.