Things to Do

Things to Do in DC This Weekend (December 15-18): Holiday A Cappella, A Record Fair, and Two Takes on A Christmas Carol

British vocal sextet the King’s Singers performs holiday music at the National Cathedral on Sunday. Photo by Andy Staples.


FOOD & DRINK Kombucha—a fermented tea thought to have digestive health benefits—is the new hip fad, sold everywhere from Whole Foods to local farmer’s markets. A local kombuchery, Craft Kombucha, is hosting a “Kombucha 101” class at Union Market. Participants will learn how to make their own kombucha at home, and will leave with all the equipment they need to get started. $50, 6 PM.

COMEDY Everyone knows the stereotype of a hypnotist, and it usually involves making embarrassing animal noises on stage. But hypnotist Flip Orley takes a different tack, promising not to humiliate his volunteers for comic effect. While his shows do have a comedic tone (he typically incorporates traditional stand-up in his act), he really just leads audience members in letting go and being free. Orley performs all weekend at the DC Improv. $17, 7:30 PM.


MUSIC For those who can’t get enough Harry Potter, check out the lineup of wizard-rock bands at the Black Cat, headlined by Harry & the Potters and featuring other Rowling-inspired bands such as Draco & the Malfoys and Tonks & the Aurors. The show is a benefit for the Harry Potter Alliance, a group that makes activism accessible through the power of story. $20, 6 PM.

BEER The holidays are a season of giving, and the Blaguard is hosting an event they’ve dubbed Toyapalooza: bring in a toy donation, and receive your first beer (from one of the area’s breweries—Atlas, DC Brau, 3 Stars, or Port City) on the house. Free to attend (but bring a toy donation), 6 PM.

COMEDY The Baltimore Improv Group takes a spin on the traditional Christmas Carol tale with Bah, Humbug! An Improvised Christmas Carol, on Friday and Saturday night at Drafthouse Comedy. The show takes the basic plot points (Tiny Tim, ghosts, etc.) and uses inspiration from the audience to create a brand-new retelling. $20, 8 PM and 10 PM.


FOOD & DRINK Sometimes Santa would rather have a beer than some milk. To help pick out just the right pairing, the Brew Shop in Courthouse is hosting a tasting of four holiday beers from Baltimore brewery Flying Dog plus cookies from Baltimore’s Otterbein’s Bakery. The four beers were inspired by specific cookies. Free, 1 PM to 4 PM.

FESTIVAL The annual GRUMP Holiday Arts & Crafts Fair returns this year with a new location at the Shops at Crystal City. The fair features over 50 local arts & crafts vendors, plus a roaming yeti. Free, 11 AM to 5 PM.

MUSIC DC’s Radio CPR is hosting a benefit record fair at La Casa in Mount Pleasant. The community station—which bills itself as “radio for the people, by the people”—is losing its space, so proceeds from the fair will assist in the effort to find a new home. Vendors include Sister Polygon Records, Smash Records, and more. Free, 10 AM to 4 PM.

THEATER For a (slightly) more traditional take on A Christmas Carol, Keegan Theatre’s An Irish Carol adapts the Dickens classic in an Irish pub setting. The play through December 31. $35 to $45, 8 PM.


BIKE In 2012, an Arlington cyclist named Megan decided to ride 100 miles around Hains Point to raise awareness for Washington Area Bicycling Association’s Women & Bicycles program. The Hains Point 100 has become an annual event since then, with options for less experienced cyclists to ride shorter distances—or just to donate money or cheer on riders as they circle the 3-mile loop. There are also giveaways for cyclists, regardless of distance. Free (but registration/donations are recommended), 8:30 AM.

MUSIC The British vocal ensemble the King’s Singers perform with stunning emotion and precision (and the group has a couple Grammy awards in its trophy case to prove it). But at Sunday’s concert at the National Cathedral, the all-male sextet is focusing on holiday music such as “Carol of the Bells”, “Stille Nacht”, and “Winter Wonderland”. $25 to $95, 5 PM.