DC Travel Guide  |  Things to Do

Guide to Washington, DC: Spring and Summer 2012 Festivals

The National Cherry Blossom Festival kicks off a slew of spring and summer events, showcasing movies, crafts, books, science, and more.

Even the police get into the spirit at DC’s summer Capital Pride Festival. Photograph courtesy of Borderstan.

The National Cherry Blossom Festival (nationalcherryblossom­-festival.org) continues through April 27, with art, food, music, and other events across town.

The Smithsonian Craft Show (smithsoniancraft-show.org) returns April 19 through 22, bringing 121 exhibitors and vendors to the National Building Museum.

The Bethesda Literary Festival (bethesda.org) is April 20 through 22, with readings and panels by authors including Walter Isaacson, Sally Bedell Smith, and R.L. Stine.

The USA Science & Engineering Festival (usa­sciencefestival.org) returns for its second year April 28 and 29, with events, presentations, and stage shows in the Walter E. Washington Convention Center.

Passport DC (culturaltourismdc.org) runs throughout May, offering embassy open houses, cultural events, and more.

The arts festival Artomatic (artomatic.org) returns May 18 through June 23, with showcases from artists of all different mediums.

Capital Pride (capitalpride.org) is scheduled to run May 30 through June 10, featuring vendors, entertainment, and a street parade.

The DC Jazz Festival (dcjazz-fest.org), June 1 through 10, offers jazz performances, family days, and other events across town.

The Source Festival (source-dc.org/sourcefestival), scheduled for June 8 through July 1, showcases new and emerging plays and theater companies performing at Source.

The biggest documentary festival in the country, Silverdocs (silverdocs.com), screens a hundred new films in Silver Spring June 18 through 24.

The DC Caribbean Carnival (dccaribbean-carnival.org), June 23 and 24, includes a street parade, entertainment, and food.

The annual Smithsonian Folklife Festival (festival.si.edu), June 27 through July 1 and July 4 through 8, stages cultural events with food, crafts, music, and more on the Mall.

Snag a spot on the mall July 4 for the National Mall ­Independence Day Celebration (nps.gov/foju), with fireworks, concerts, and other attractions.

The DC Shorts Film Festival (dcshorts.com) screens a variety of national and international short films at three area venues, September 6 through 16.

The National Book Festival (loc.gov/bookfest) returns to the Mall September 22 and 23, with readings, book sales, and more.