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What to Do This Weekend: October 25 to 28

Get your costume ready—this weekend is all about Halloween.

So many zombie things happening in town this weekend. Image courtesy of Shutterstock.

Thursday, October 25

TALKS: All year, Thirst has been overrunning bars with nerds as experts give TED-style talks about all manner of things. Tonight, six Smithsonian experts will talk about the feasibility of space guns, indigenous tattoo culture, the colors found on the surface of Mars, why American Chinese food tastes so good (hint: it’s doused in corn syrup), and DINOSAURS. Dress up in your favorite nerdy costume (please try to coordinate so there’s not too many Neil DeGrasse Tysons, Bill Nyes, or Reddit Upvotes). Best costume wins ten free drinks that Thirst recommends you hand out to “break the ice, make some friends, and have fun; please don’t hide in the corner and attempt to pound ten drinks.” SOUNDS LIKE A CHALLENGE. Tickets ($20) are available online. 7 PM.

CAUSES: Take advantage of the last vestiges of nice-ish weather before we get stormed on by a Halloween hurricane at Tony & Joe’s on the Georgetown Waterfront. Sip With Socialites is throwing a benefit and auction to Becky’s Fund for domestic violence victims; a $20 donation gets you inside and a free purple cocktail. Misses Wyoming, Maryland, and DC will be on hand for you to ham it up with. Tickets ($20) are available online. 7 PM.

Friday, October 26

DRAWING: Unleash those doodles you scribble on your notepad at boring meetings at the American Art Museum’s Drawing at Dusk. Get inspired by the art or sketch a live model—the museum will supply the pencils and other drawing materials, so all you need to bring is a sketchbook. Free. 5:30 PM.

THROWBACK HALLOWEEN: Unsurprisingly, nearly everything going on this weekend is Halloween-themed, so plan your costume accordingly. If you wanna go as early-days Madonna or Prince and have a taste for the classier things in life, P.O.V.’s Neon Nights ’80s Halloween Party is for you. A deejay will be bumpin’ New Wave, dance, and hair metal from the decade you just can’t leave behind. Tickets ($40) are available through Event Farm. 8 PM.

HIPSTER HALLOWEEN: You didn’t think you’d get a Halloween weekend without a BYT party, right? Queue up the ironic costumes for Temple of Doom (but don’t screw this one up or you may be greeted with eye rolls). The party will feature burlesque, karaoke, a ton of candy, a hypnotist, zombie go-go dancers, free zombification if your costume sucks or could stand to be a little more undead, and crazy dance music from Nouveau Riche. Tickets ($20) are available online. 8 PM.

BURLESQUE HALLOWEEN: The other Halloween rager option is at Red Palace, which will feature, as usual, sideshow and burlesque performances. You get a belly dancer, a contortionist, lots of burlesque, and interactive games. Wear a costume. Tickets are $10 in advance or $12 at the door. 9 PM.

Saturday, October 27

KIDS’ HALLOWEEN: Get some shopping done and entertain your kids at the Old Town Boutique District, which hosts trick-or-treating all day for your little witches and monsters. Free.

FASHION HALLOWEEN: Hope your costume’s ready and you’ve got lots of energy, because the Halloween parties start before the ghosts come out at night. The Greater Washington Fashion Chamber of Commerce is throwing a party at T-Square in Georgetown, and your costume better be classy and fashionable or GET OUT (my rule, not theirs). Tari will be on hand selling its decidedly not-spooky fashions; there will also be drinks, food, and candy, which is also kind of a food. Tickets ($20) are available online. 3 PM.

ZOMBIE HALLOWEEN: Arlington Cinema & Drafthouse and Art Whino are taking over the Fairgrounds for some good ol’-fashioned zombie fun. If you are terrible at turning yourself into a zombie, they’ll do it for you (if you enjoy standing in scary-long lines). Shaun of the Dead, Dawn of the Dead, and Zombieland will play on a giant screen, and DJ Lil’ e will spin so you can get your dance on. Tickets ($20) are available online. 6 PM.

ALL SORTS OF THINGS HALLOWEEN: LivingSocial also hosts a party, featuring seven specialty cocktail tastings (seven deadly sin-themed), a burlesque show (is there a huge contingent of burlesque dancers for hire I’m missing somewhere?), a dance party, all-you-can-eat cupcakes, and fried foods spread out between seven deadly rooms, all with a different theme. Tickets ($59) are available online. 8 PM.

YET MORE HALLOWEEN: Finally (not actually finally, there are dozens of other parties around town), we’ve got Penn Social. Their party sounds pretty run-of-the-mill: They’ve got a deejay, an ’80s cover band, Halloween-themed drinks, and costume contests. But having seen their space, it seems like this party might be one of the better ones—it’s essentially a huge room with high ceilings and few obstructions for maximum dance space. Sounds perfect for your expansive Optimus Prime costume. Tickets ($20) are available through Eventbrite. 9 PM.

Sunday, October 28

MOVIES: The National Museum of American History screens One Flew Over the Cuckoo’s Nest, one of the best movies of all time. Jack Nicholson was already a star, but his performance in Cuckoo’s Nest solidified him as a legend. Afterward, a panel will discuss the film’s importance and the motivation for making the movie, as well as celebrate its Czech director, Milos Forman (it’s Czech National Day, so it’s festive and stuff). Free. 1 PM.

BREAKABLE, FUNCTIONAL ART: If you’re looking for some cool ceramics for your current or future kids to knock over, head to the Hill Center for Pottery on the Hill, featuring works from 15 local and national ceramic artists. Free. Noon to 4.

ZOMBIES: If you haven’t checked out Rockville’s Warehouse: Project 4.1, Sunday might be a good day. A medical study gone wrong has caused lots of crazy mutations and the zombification (I hear zombies are big these days) of hundreds of people. See if you can help them—or at least come for the freakshow, if you’re brave enough. Tickets ($20) are available online; mention “walking dead” for a discount. 7 to 10 PM.

Want even more Halloween? check out our special Halloween section for recipes, events, and other spooky happenings. 

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

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