Things to Do

Ten Under $10

Choose among cinematic idealism, creepy poetry, and stargazing on the cheap

Even the most disillusioned Washingtonians can’t help but feel a twinge when they consider Mr. Smith Goes to Washington, the classic movie about an idealistic young senator who finds himself up against the culture of corruption. It’s playing at the American Art Museum Thursday at 6:30. Free.

Pick up some new moves during Afro-Peruvian Night at the Embassy of Peru (1700 Massachusetts Ave., NW). Award-winning performer Victor Padilla will share folklore and demonstrate el zapateo, a Peruvian tap dance, and the dance group Mamauca will teach regional steps such as the lando and festejo. Click here to RSVP 7 to 9. Free.

This week’s Friday Night Eclectic at the Strathmore features Stripmall Ballads (a.k.a. Phillips Saylor), a Washington-based folk singer with a rock-and-roll vibe. Click here for tickets ($10 in advance; $12 at the door). 8 PM.

Try lots of restaurants on the cheap at Taste of Georgetown (cosponsored by The Washingtonian). More than 30 of the neighborhood’s eateries, including 1789 and Mie N Yu, are offering samples and wine pairings, and Blues Alley is providing live jazz. Wisconsin Ave. and M St., NW. Saturday, 11 to 4. Tasting tickets ($5) are available here.

Celebrate the original master of horror just in time for Halloween at Poe-a-Thon on the outdoor stage in downtown Silver Spring (Ellsworth Dr. between Fenton St. and Georgia Ave.). Local actors, politicians, and arts leaders will read Edgar Allan Poe’s spookiest poems and stories out loud. Saturday, 2:30 to 4:30. Free.

Put on your lederhosen and head to Rustico for OktoBEERfest, where there’ll be almost 30 seasonal beers on tap and plenty of traditional German fare. The outdoor celebration also features live music as well as kid-friendly activities such as a moon bounce, face painting, cookie decorating, and pumpkin carving. Saturday, noon to 6. Admission is free; food and drink available for purchase.

The 28-member National Danish Performance Team shows off its talents at the Kennedy Center’s Millennium Stage Saturday. The performance combines gymnastics, dance, theater, acrobatics, and tumbling. 6 PM. Free.  

Take a break from city lights and check out the Saturday Star Party, hosted by the National Air and Space Museum. Astronomers will give a quick lesson on the night sky and then give attendees a peek at the universe through high-power telescopes. At Sky Meadows State Park. 6:45 to 9:45. Free; $4 parking fee per vehicle.

Ra Ra Rasputin and Casper Bangs celebrate their respective album releases Saturday at Black Cat. Jaguar Club will also perform. 9 PM. $10.

Close out your weekend at U Street Music Hall’s Nouveau Riche dance party. The club’s DJs are spinning both original tracks and remixes. Saturday at 10. $10.