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What to Do This Weekend: May 23 to 27

Free outdoor movies, Memorial Day barbecues, and an ’80s prom.

What’s Memorial Day without a barbecue? Photograph via Shutterstock.

Thursday, May 23

ROOFTOPS: It’s prime rooftop bar season, just before cicadas and humidity make it slightly less wonderful. Head to Art Soiree on top of the Beacon Hotel with happy hour specials from 5 to 7 and a live performance from local jazz musicians the Cricket Fusion starting when the sun begins to set. Free with RSVP. 5 PM.

JAZZ: If you haven’t checked out HR-57’s newish space on H Street, it’s about time. For those of you not in the know, the club is named after Congressional Resolution HR-57, which designated jazz as an American treasure worth preserving. Every Thursday, they do their part with a jam sesh. The club is BYOB. Tickets ($8) are available online. 8 PM.

Friday, May 24

MOVIES: Two good outdoor movies this week: Merrifield’s Strawberry Park has Argo, Rosslyn’s Gateway Park has Ferris Bueller’s Day Off. I think Argo is about a guy who skips class and Bueller is about some sort of elaborate Middle Eastern escape/heist, but I could be wrong.

Argo: Free, 7 PM

Bueller: Free, 8-ish

RUN: Some of you guys love running so much, you’ll do it in the middle of the night. Avery’s, a brand new bar on H Street, is hosting Midnight on Mars, a three-mile run that hits up Union Station and other local landmarks and ends with a party at the bar. Light food and water will be on the house. Wear something neon-y. Free. Pre-race events begin at 10:30; the race begins at midnight.

BURLESQUE: Black Cat’s Twisted Teases is a burlesque and variety show featuring a bunch of local dancers, sword swallowers, jugglers, and who knows what else. This week promises “an edge you didn’t see coming,” which is kind of a scary thought. Tickets ($12) are available online. 8:45 and 11 PM.

RAP: Brightest Young Things is getting into the rap game with Fat Lip, a new monthly show at Columbia Heights’ Zeba. This week’s show features Baltimore’s Ddm and Virginia’s Farma Wesley—both emcees have a throwback, early ’90s kind of sound. Instead of doing it up crazy like BYT usually does, things will stay casual: $5 at the door, $2 PBRs, and $5 Jameson drinks. 9 PM.

Saturday, May 25

DANCE: Liv Nightclub’s #CRANKPARTY goes heavy on the hashtags, capital letters, and electronic dance music. Come because you love ridiculous bass drops, and stay because you can get unlimited Jameson from 10 to 11 for $10. Tickets are $3 in advance or $10 at the door. 10 PM.

DANCE: She packs the house for her mashup Madonna/boy band dance nights at 9:30 Club, but for a deejay lil’e performance that’s just as fun in a much smaller spot, you can’t beat Black Cat’s Right Round, where she spins ’80s new wave, dance pop, and alternative music backstage all night. $7 at the door. 10 PM.

ZOMBIE CRAWL: It sounds like the beginning to Independence Day II: Memorial Day (Undead Director’s Cut), but we promise the DC Zombie Crawl is nothing to be scared of. Grab your best zombie garb and makeup and head to the Mall to scare various tourists before hitting the bars in Adams Morgan. If you don’t have the skills or patience to make yourself look zombie-like, professional makeup artists will be around to help you out if you show up early (for a donation). Proceeds will go to Stillbrave, which is helping fight childhood cancer. Online registration is $20 until May 24 or $25 the day of the event. 6 PM.

Sunday, May 26

DRINK: We all know Hemingway could drink with the best of them. For some reason, the writer is often associated with the mojito, but by all accounts, he gave the daiquiri about the same amount of love. The Gibson will give you the lowdown behind Hemingway’s version and will stir one up for you for $8 at its Sunday School event. $8. 8 PM.

DANCE: There are three reasons you’d check out the Howard Theatre’s ’80s Prom Night Jam: You had a horrible prom experience in the ’80s and want a do-over; you had a great prom experience in the ’80s and don’t prescribe to the YOLO mantra so you want to do it all over again; you grew up in another decade and want to know what it’s like to wear leggings to prom. All are acceptable in my book. Tickets ($10) are available online. 10:30 PM.

BARBECUE: What’s Memorial Day without cookouts? (Not Memorial Day, that’s what.) Jack Rose has you covered: The rooftop will have Kobe beef sliders, barbecue beef brisket sliders, half-smokes, shrimp rolls, grilled oysters, an open bar, cornhole, a photo booth, and lots of American pride. Tickets ($48) are available online. 6 PM. If you prefer to host your own barbecue, check out our tips for the best shindig ever.

CRABS: Policy is holding its third annual crab festival, featuring all-you-can-eat Maryland crabs, beer specials, and two new varieties of Blue Moon beer. Tickets ($35) are available online. Noon to 5.

Monday, May 27

BASEBALL: Nothing’s more American than afternoon baseball, right? Now that both the Nats and the Orioles are (reasonably) good, the Battle of the Beltways has a fiercer feel to it. Tickets to the game are sold out, but there are plenty of reasonably priced tickets on Stubhub. 1 PM.

MUSIC: The Kennedy Center’s Millennium Stage is featuring an Asian-Pacific American Heritage Month performance, which will apparently start out with traditional Asian music before eventually ending on “Gangnam Style,” which couldn’t be less traditional. Free. 6 PM.

Know of something cool going on around town? E-mail Jason Koebler at, or find him on Twitter

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