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What to Do This Weekend: July 5 to 8

Get a preview of the Capital Fringe Festival, become a burlesque dancer, and eat as much barbecue as you can handle.

You should actually make it to Jazz in the Garden this week. Photograph courtesy of Flickr user joelogon.

Thursday, July 5

FOLKLIFE: It’s hard to shake off all that patriotism you exhibited yesterday, but how about trying on other cultures for a change? The Smithsonian’s Folklife Festival continues today with a celebration of all things (traditional) Hawaiian at the Morrill Performing Arts Center—check out authentic hula troupes and steel drum bands all day, before an evening performance by an Azerbaijani band. Starting at 11 AM. See the website for a full schedule of events.

CULTURE: If that’s too exotic, how about trying a little-known Japanese performing art known as “karaoke” at Sticky Rice? You’ll also get to sample far-out beers such as “Pabst Blue Ribbon” for just $2 all night. Free. 9 PM.

Friday, July 6

JAZZ: If you haven’t checked out Jazz in the Garden at the National Gallery yet, what are you waiting for? With Independence Day firmly behind us, the summer will be over before you know it. Friday, the Afro Bop Alliance, an Afro-Cuban jazz ensemble, will be bringing their cool rhythms to the garden. Bring a blanket and get there early. Free. 5 PM.

FRINGE: Theater junkies, rejoice—Capital Fringe Festival starts next week, but you can start planning Friday when 30 groups will perform four minutes of each show at the Baldacchino Gypsy Tent Bar. Grab one of seven beers on tap, snack on meatball sliders, hot dogs, and hummus and pita, and check out what you’re in for next week. Free. 7 PM.

Saturday, July 7

WINE: Ping Pong Dim Sum’s Dragon Boat Festival is coming to an end, but give it one last hurrah with the closing ceremony festival, where you’ll get endless Realgar wine at either location for $15. In Dupont from noon till 2 PM, you can race miniature rubber duckies for the chance to win prizes.

BURLESQUE: Ever checked out the burlesque shows at Red Palace or elsewhere around the city and thought, “Hey, I can do that”? Now you can—Jordin’s Paradise is hosting a Moulin Rouge workshop all day. Start with a burlesque makeover, then learn some dance techniques before showing off your new moves with a party at night. $35 per workshop or $75 for the entire day. Noon to 10 PM.

Sunday, July 8

CRABS: Even though we live so close to the Chesapeake Bay, you probably don’t get out to the Eastern Shore as much as you ought to. Front Page is bringing the crabs to you with Crab Fest—you’ll get a dozen Maryland blue crabs and unlimited fixins for $19.50 per person. If you don’t know how to crack a crab, now’s your time to learn. 4:30 PM.

BLOCK PARTY: Jackie’s Restaurant in Silver Spring has some of the best cocktails in the area, and the food is nothing to scoff at, either. Enjoy both with the all-you-can-eat indoor/outdoor block party and barbecue. The menu includes ribs, chicken, bratwurst, potato salad, and Mexican corn on the cob. Bring a dessert to enter in the bake-off—if you’ve got the best, you’ll win a VIP dinner for two at the restaurant. Tickets are $20; reserve by calling 301-565-9700. Noon to 3 PM.

Know of something cool to do around town? E-mail Jason Koebler at, or find him on Twitter at @jason_koebler.

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