Thursday, May 31: The Washington Improv Theater starts its summer run of shows tonight. If you haven’t been to a WIT show before at the Flashpoint Gallery (916 G Street, NW), you’re missing out—the local funsters give fresh, funny performances in a town that often takes itself a tad too seriously. Bonus: If you head out a bit early, you can go to Ella’s (901 F Street, NW), around the corner from the Flashpoint Gallery, for happy hour, which includes discounted sangria and free pizza. See WIT’s show schedule and get ticket info here.
Thinking about investing in art but scared off by the prices? Try the Studio Gallery’s “Art Draw 2007” this evening from 7 to 9. If you enter the raffle—a ticket costs $100—you’ll walk out with a piece of art from the gallery. It’s a bit of a gamble—there’s no guarantee you’ll get a piece of your choosing—but it might just turn out to be worth the investment. 2108 R Street, NW.
Friday, June 1: Nethers is one of my favorite bands to come out of DC in recent years—and it might be because it doesn’t sound anything like you’d expect a band coming out of DC to sound. It’s a little bit country, a little bit rock, and a ton of atmosphere and emotion. The band plays the Black Cat tonight with the Broken West and the Comas (and Nethers is part of Listen Up!, so check out an mp3 of theirs, plus lots more music from bands coming through town this week). $12, 9 pm.
This weekend’s your last chance to see "The Oracle" at the Atlas Performing Arts Center (1333 H Street, NE). It's a story about Charlotte, a young African princess who’s on a journey for truth and knowledge—and the play is conducted through puppetry. 8 pm. Tickets are $32 and available here.
Saturday, June 2: If you’re looking for some summer fun, head to the Black Cat this evening, where the poppiest, catchiest, and girl-groupiest act I’ve seen in a long time is set to play. The Pipettes, a British female trio, are bringing back ’60s girl-fronted pop and putting a modern spin on it. Listen to “Pull Shapes” and tell me you’re not dancing in your seat. $10, 9 pm.
Today’s the day to get out to a local festival. Over at Merriweather Post Pavilion, you’ve got the Capital Jazz Fest, with a lineup that’ll thrill any jazz aficionado. Check out the info here. Then up at Glen Echo, there’s the Washington Folk Festival, featuring music, dance, storytelling, and crafts from local artists. It runs noon till 7, details here.
Finally, out in Centreville, there’s the annual Vintage Virginia Wine Festival, where you can taste more than 350 varieties of Virginia wine. You can also take seminars on everything from how to taste wine properly to how to judge it, browse arts and crafts for sale, and listen to a lineup of live performances. A day pass costs $20; you can also buy a shuttle pass for $16 that will take you to and from the festival hourly from the Vienna Metro station. 11 am to 6 pm. Directions are here.
Sunday, June 3: Do you have some engineering savvy? If so, you might want to try out the Cardboard Boat Regatta this weekend at Lake Accotink Park (7500 Accotink Park Road, Springfield, VA). All you have to do is build your own cardboard boat, put it on the water, and see who stays afloat—or sinks. Rules on entry and how to register are here; boat judging starts at noon and the races begin at 2.
It’s a Potterlicious summer coming up. Soon the next Harry Potter movie will be out, and the final installment of JK Rowling’s series will be published. To get in the spirit, check out Harry and the Potters, a duo consisting of two young brothers who dress up like, well, Harry Potter and sing songs about—you guessed it—Harry Potter. While silly, the songs are poppy and fun, and watching is a blast. The band plays the Germantown Library (19840 Century Blvd.) at 3 pm.