Things to Do

Things to Do in DC This Weekend (September 20-23): Free Museum Day, DC Fashion Week, and SO MANY Outdoor Festivals

The ninth annual DC State Fair takes place on Sunday at Waterfront Station. Photograph by Blushing Whale Films.


MUSIC The American Folklife Center periodically organizes “Archive Challenges,” asking folk musicians to learn materials from the center’s archives. This performance features percussionist Jaimeo Brown, local bilingual folk rock band Elena & Los Fulanos, Tunisian/Iranian duo Huda & Kamyar, and traditional maritime performers Ship’s Company Chanteymen. Catch these four groups at the Coolidge Auditorium. Free, 7:30 PM.

FASHION Designers will present their spring and summer collections at DC Fashion Week, which kicks off on Thursday with an industry networking party and NextGen Designer Fashion Show at The Living Room DC. Friday’s fashion show with designer Ean Williams at Madame Tussauds is now sold out, but there are two additional shows: an emerging designers showcase at the Crystal City Doubletree on Saturday and international designers at the Embassy of France on Sunday. Networking Party (Thursday): Free, 6 PM. Ean Williams at Madame Tussauds (Friday): Sold Out. Emerging Designers Showcase (Saturday): $50, 7 PM. International Couture Collections Show (Sunday): $70, 5 PM.


THEATRE Ford’s Theatre presents Born Yesterday, a political satire about corruption in Washington just after World War II. A tycoon arrives in DC eager to make a fortune from importing post-war scrap and enlists a Senator to protect his business from tariffs and other government meddling. He also hires a local reporter to teach some manners to his uncouth girlfriend, but she ends up being a quicker study than he anticipated and wises up to his devious schemes. Through October 21. $20-$62.

PARTY Join Brightest Young Things after hours at the National Geographic Museum in conjunction with its exhibit “Titanic: The Untold Story.” The event–which is, of course, is called “My Party Will Go On”—celebrates the Titanic with 90s tribute band White Ford Bronco and DJ Matt Bailer of “Peach Pit.” In addition to the party (and beers from Old Bust Head Brewing), several National Geographic Explorers will be on hand to give lightning talks. 21+ only. $25-$30, 8 PM.

FILM Old Greenbelt Theatre is recreating its 1938 opening day (you read that right—80 years ago!) with a 35mm screening of the musical Little Miss Broadway. The entire evening will pay tribute to the film’s star Shirley Temple with a pre-film singalong and themed food and drinks (featuring Shirley Temples, duh). $19.38, 7 PM.

CONVENTION Get some home renovation ideas at the Capital Home Show this weekend at Dulles Expo Center. The convention—whose featured guest is Trading SpacesVern Yip—will feature 250 exhibitors, plus seminars and home-remodeling products. Through September 23. $7-$10, 10 AM – 9 PM (Friday / Saturday) and 10 AM – 6 PM (Sunday).

FASHION The Washington Redskins are hosting a fall fashion show at Bloomingdales in Tysons Corner to benefit the Washington Redskins Charitable Foundation, which supports youth programs across the region. Models typically include players, wives, and cheerleaders and there will also be a silent auction of exclusive team items and experiences. $100, 6 PM.


MUSEUMS Unlike most cities in America, DC is spoiled by the many free Smithsonians right in our backyard. This Saturday, museums across the country will adopt the Smithsonian’s policy of free entry on this 14th annual Museum Day—including our local museums that usually charge admission, such as the Newseum and the Phillips Collection. This year’s theme is “Women Making History” as a nod to the women who were trailblazers in arts and sciences. Free with a Museum Day ticket.

FESTIVALS Old Town Alexandria is hosting TWO festivals this weekend. The Old Town Waterfront Fitness + Wellness Festival highlights local fitness studios and wellness companies at the Waterfront Park. Check out yoga, massages, or the 8-10 minute workouts offered every 20 minutes. A few blocks away, the 16th Annual Alexandria King Street Art Festival (postponed from last weekend due to Hurricane Florence) will host over 200 local and national artists showing jewelry, handcrafted art, and decor. In addition to all the crafts, The Art League is hosting its Ice Cream Bowl Fundraiser: buy one of 1,400 handmade bowls with a scoop of ice cream, to benefit the Art League. Fitness + Wellness Festival: Saturday only, $29-$44, noon – 4 PM. King Street Art Festival: Free ($15 for Ice Cream Bowl), Saturday 10 AM – 7 PM, Sunday 10 AM – 4 PM.

MUSIC The two-day GreenHaus Festival celebrates music and cannabis this weekend at RFK Stadium. Performers include Gucci Mane, Dizzy Wright, Bone Thugs-n-Harmony, and local rapper Lightshow; vendors are all Initiative 71 compliant (e.g., no edibles). Through September 23. $70 (single day) or $110 (two-day pass).

DOGS Dachshund fans and owners should head to Yards Park for the 7th annual Wiener 500, a celebration of Oktoberfest and competition for those stubby-legged pooches. Wiener dogs will race in heats of up to 8 dogs each, with cash prizes for the fastest three dogs overall. All breeds of dogs can participate in a costume contest, and the Human Rescue Alliance will have furry friends available for adoption! The HRA is also hosting a fundraising Walk for the Animals before the event. Walk: 11 AM. Wiener 500: 1-5 PM.

FESTIVAL Celebrate Clarendon at Clarendon Day, a street festival with performance stages, craft vendors, and local/regional food (including Virginia craft beers and wines). Pacers is also hosting a Clarendon Day 10k/5k with a special challenge (to run both events!) plus, a Kids Dash. Race: $10-$55, 8 AM. Clarendon Day: Free, 11 AM – 6 PM.

KIDS Reston Farm Market is celebrating the coming of autumn with its family Fall Festival. The event includes a petting zoo, face painting, and train rides. Look for seasonal produce as well, such as local apple cider. $10, 11 AM – 5:30 PM.


STATE FAIR DC isn’t officially a state (yet) but it still hosts its own fair. The ninth annual DC State Fair will showcase agriculture and art at the Waterfront Station in Southwest DC. There will be contests for baked goods and homebrews, eating contests (Sloppy Joes for adults and ice cream for kids), and competitions for pets including best costume, best Frisbee catcher, and best tennis ball fetcher. There will also be plenty of food, drink, and craft vendors, plus musical performances and educational demonstrations. Free, 11 AM – 8 PM.

PIE The Takoma Park Farmers Market is hosting its 7th annual Pie Contest this Sunday. Enter your pie using any seasonal ingredient found at the market; pies can be 1- or 2-crust and can be either sweet or savory. The contest—open previously only to amateur bakers—now has a professional baker category as well. Present a freshly-baked, uncut pie by 11:30 AM along with a copy of the recipe. After the judging, slices of pie will be offered to the public for a donation to the Takoma Park Farmers Market SNAP Match Program. 1 PM (pie sales to public).

LECTURE Photographer John Edmonds has challenged stereotypes of African Americans by juxtaposing clothing like du-rags and hoods with soft light in his portraiture. In conjunction with the National Gallery of Art’s current exhibition, “Dawoud Bey: The Birmingham Project,” Edmonds will chat with Princeton Ph.D. candidate Jessica Bell Brown at the NGA’s East Building Auditorium about portraiture possibilities. The discussion will be followed by a book signing of Edmonds’s monograph, Higher. Free, 2 PM.

ZOO To celebrate Hispanic Heritage Month, the National Zoo is hosting its annual ZooFiesta on Sunday. Enjoy live music and learn about conservation in Central and South America. Animal demonstrations will focus on the those native to that region (such as Panamanian golden frogs, golden lion tamarins, and Andean bears), and several of the talks/feedings will be bilingual. Free, 11 AM – 3 PM.

MUSEUMS The National Museum of Women in the Arts is expanding its annual MakeHER Mart to a two-day MakeHER Summit. The MakeHER Mart will highlight 30 local female artists and designers who offer a variety of handmade goods. Later on Sunday evening, the museum presents four speakers on a panel about women entrepreneurs in creative businesses called “MakeHER—Women in the Creative Economy.” Speakers include Virginia Arrisueño (DeNada Design, Steadfast Supply), Grace Bonney (Design*Sponge), Dionna Dorsey (District of Clothing), and Rakia Reynolds (Skai Blue Media). The summit concludes on Monday with a full day of workshops for entrepreneurs looking for guidance and mentorship. MakeHER Mart (Sunday): $10, 10 AM – 4 PM. “Women in the Creative Economy” (Sunday): $25, 4:30 PM. Workshops (Monday): $25, 9:30 AM – 4:30 PM.

OUR STUFF: Our annual Taste of Georgetown food and drink fest is this Sunday. We can’t wait to try samples from sweet (Sprinkles and Olivia Macaron) to swanky (Clyde’s and ENO Wine Bar), and so much more. For the more adventurous, try out a doughnut-, cupcake-, or pasta-eating competition (all three, anyone?).  Pre-sale taste tickets are no longer available, but you can buy on-site. Location: K Street NW between Wisconsin Avenue and Thomas Jefferson Street. Free entry, food and drink tickets for purchase; 11 AM – 4 PM.