News & Politics

Where & When Weekend

Looking to find exciting events around town this weekend? Here are our picks for the best bets out there.

Luke Brindley plays Jammin’ Java Friday, Feb. 9.

Searching for some unique Valentine's Day events? Check out our Valentine's Day roundup — everything from parties to romantic hotel packages. And over on the Best Bites blog, we point out the restaurants that still have reservations available on Wednesday the 14th.  

Thursday | Friday | Saturday | Sunday 

Thursday, Feb. 8: Want to get your Valentine something unique this year? Head to the Torpedo Factory in Alexandria for Heart Art. You can browse studios for artist-made Valentines and gifts, and the event features dance performances and lessons by Generations Dance Studio. 6 p.m. – 9 p.m. (703) 838-4565.

If Thursday for you is about nearing the end of the work week, you might enjoy the Office Space Movie Festival at Arlington Cinema N' Drafthouse tonight. There'll be a DJ, movie trivia — even a contest to see who can do the best Bill Lumbergh impersonation. If you're really in the spirit, you can dress as an Office Space character and get a 2-for-1 movie pass. $7. 7 p.m.

Friday, Feb. 9: With the cold of winter settling in, not much is more appealing than hot, savory soups. Domenica Marchetti will be promoting her new book, The Glorious Soups and Stews of Italy, at the Olsson's in Crystal City, copmlete with be tastings of her soups and stews. So take a long lunch break — you know you deserve it — and head on over. 12 p.m. Free. (703) 413-8121.

Plenty of folks know that Jammin' Java, the funky coffee shop in Vienna, is a great place to relax with a newspaper and a latte. But not everyone's aware that one of Jammin' Java's owners, Luke Brindley, plays some of the best roots rock the area has to offer. Earnest, heartbreaking and catchy all at once, Brindley's self-titled solo CD is one of the best local releases in months. Brindley and his band take over Jammin' Java this evening. Head out for what's sure to be an intimate and entertaining performance. With Stacey Earle, Mark Stuart, and Kim Taylor. 8 p.m. $12.

For something more energetic, visit Selam at 1524 U St., NW. By day, it's a cozy little restaurant offering Ethiopian food. But on weekend nights, it transforms into a packed, sweaty dance club. The Disco City DJs take over tonight, offering up classic house beats. Bring your dancing shoes — but not your sense of personal space. When I say it gets crowded on the tiny dance floor, I'm not kidding. 10 p.m. Free.

Saturday, Feb. 10: Nothing makes me feel better than getting a good bargain — and there should be plenty of those today at the Old Town Boutique Warehouse Sale in Alexandria. Several local retailers, including Hysteria, The Shoe Hive, ReMix vintage clothes, and jewelry designer Queen Bee Designs, will be selling their wares with discounts of up to 80%. The event takes place at the Campagna Center (418 S. Washington St., Alexandria). 9 a.m. – 3 p.m. Free. (703) 548-7105 for more information.

The DC Shorts Film Festival folks are showing the best of the DC Shorts from 2006 this evening during the run-up to their 2007 event. The list includes some doozies — who wouldn't want to see audience favorite "Zombie American," about "some of the challenges zombies face in our society?" The films will be screened at the United States Navy Memorial’s 250-seat theater, near the Archives-Navy Memorial Metro stop. Enter the theater through the Naval Heritage Center doors. 7 p.m. $10 (purchase tickets here).

Here's an oldie but a goodie — Black Cat's Mousetrap dance night. The britpop dance event, which was DC's first, is still its most popular. Even if you're not much for dancing, the music and kids done up in their best glammed-out duds are worth the price of admission. 9:30 p.m. $10.

Sunday, Feb. 11: The Freshfarm Market in Dupont Circle is known for high-quality organic fare from local producers. But this Sunday they're focusing on international cuisine, with the Jaleo Paella Festival. Jaleo's José Andrés is bringing in guest chefs Mari Carmen and Lola Velez of La Sirena in Alicante, Spain. And best of all, chefs will be serving up a giant paella for you to sample — and when they say giant, they aren't kidding: The paella is cooked in an eight-foot-wide pan. 10 a.m. – 1 p.m. Free. In Dupont Circle, at the 1500 block of 20th St., between Massachusetts Ave. and Q St. (202) 362.8889.

For the best in American crafts, head out to the Cabin Fever Festival on the Frederick County Fairgrounds (797 E. Patrick St., Frederick, MD). It has it all — great arts and crafts, local food samples, and live entertainment. And you don't have to worry about the weather — the exhibition tents are heated. 10 a.m.-5 p.m. $6 for adults, $3 for children. (301) 898-5466.

Today's the last day to take advantage of Silver Spring's inaugural Restaurant Week. We've got the details over in the Best Bites Blog. So pick a restaurant, make some reservations, and treat yourself to a delicious yet affordable meal.

Are they dissonant pop? Experimental weirdos? For California's Deerhoof, the answer is probably a little of both. The band, which is making waves with its release Friend Opportunity, plays the Black Cat this evening. With Harlem Shakes. $13. 8 p.m.