Things to Do

Things to Do in DC This Weekend April 30-May 3: Lila Downs, Kentucky Derby, and Unlimited Bloody Marys

Here are the best events around town.
Lila Downs performs at the Lisner Auditorium this weekend. Photo by Elena Pardo.

THURSDAY, APRIL 30

PARTY: Check out Washingtonian’s party at Mission in Dupont Circle, where guests can cast their votes for the best spots in town for the magazine’s Best of Washington July issue. With a $15 donation to the Leukemia and Lymphoma Society, you get two drinks plus light appetizers. 6 to 8 PM.

ART: Travel the US through the work of photojournalist Janire Nájera, who captured the existence of Spanish heritage across the Old Spanish Trail–a 1,200-mile trade route stretching from Santa Fe to Los Angeles. Meet Nájera at a free reception (which will include Spanish wine!) at the Former Residence of the Ambassador of Spain. RSVP required. 7 PM to 8:30 PM.

FRIDAY, MAY 1

BOOKS: Neil Gaiman–author of the famed comic series Sandman and novels such as Stardust and Coraline–comes to DAR Constitution Hall for an evening of fantasy, science fiction, and mythology. $34.50 to $57, 8 PM.

MUSIC: Grammy Award-winning singer Lila Downs performs at the GW Lisner Auditorium. The Oaxaca native, who grew up between Mexico and Minnesota, combines the sounds of ranchera music with American hip-hop and jazz. $40 to $60, 8 PM.

FILM: Fly By Light traces the story of four DC teenagers as they embark on an eight-day journey in West Virginia. The documentary, coming back to town after showing at 12 international film festivals, premieres tonight at National Geographic’s Grosvenor Auditorium. $20, 7 PM.

SATURDAY, MAY 2

HORSES: Score a seat on the Virginia Gold Cup‘s official bus trip for breakfast and bar specials starting at 8:30 AM, followed by a BYOB trek to the Plains for the race ($65). Want to stick around and sip mint juleps in DC? The Brixton, Round Robin Bar, and Jack Rose Dining Saloon are just a few of the places in town celebrating the Kentucky Derby.

CULTURE: More than forty embassies in Washington–including Brazil, Korea, Morocco, and others–celebrate this year’s “Around the World Embassy Tour.” This free fest includes fashion, food, music, and art. 10 AM to 4 PM.

SUNDAY, MAY 3

DRINK: If you’ve always wanted to try the best Bloody Marys in Washington in one place, this event at Blind Whino is for you. Ten bars and restaurants participate in this vodka-soaked party, including Hank’s Oyster Bar, Pearl Dive Oyster Palace, the Source, Del Campo, among others. $50 bucks gets you unlimited Bloody Marys, plus barbecue and live music. 1 PM to 4 PM.

THEATER: Local storytellers takeover National Geographic’s Grosvenor Auditorium for “Listen to Your Mother“–an afternoon about motherhood and, well, listening to your mother. $18, 2 PM.

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