Things to Do

Best Places to Cool Off

You’ll find jazz, ice cream, and relief from the heat at the Smithsonian American Art Museum’s Kogod Courtyard. Photograph of Kogod by Jennifer Molay

Washingtonian > Packages > Best of Washington

Want a cool escape from the summer heat? The Kettler Capitals Iceplex (627 N. Glebe Rd.; at Ballston Common in Arlington offers two NHL-size rinks—plus the chance to skate alongside a pro hockey player. The Caps train here during the season, and in the summer, a few of them—including winger Chris Clark and goalie Brent Johnson—show up for early-morning workouts and sometimes stay to skate during afternoon public sessions. Admission is $7, $6 for ages 12 and under; $3 skate rental.

If you’re around the National Mall, duck inside the Smithsonian American Art Museum’s new Kogod Courtyard (Eighth and F sts., NW; It’s naturally lit by a glass canopy, and chilled water circulates through tubing in the floor, creating a radiant cooling effect. Take advantage of the free wi-fi as well as live jazz on the third Thursday of the month. Still hot? Grab an ice-cream cone or sundae from the Courtyard Cafe, open 11:30 am to 6:30 pm.