THURSDAY, SEPTEMBER 27
FILM This year’s DC Chinese Film Festival brings 37 films about China and its culture to DC. Most screenings are at E Street Cinema, with a few other events at Mackey’s Public House and Asia Nine. This year’s theme, “Folding World,” highlights stories from underrepresented communities. The festival includes documentaries as well as narrative and animated films; several of the screenings will be followed by Q&As, and there will be a panel discussion about independent filmmaking in China on Saturday at Asia Nine. Through September 30. $85 for a festival pass; individual screenings range from free to $10.99.
BOOKS Counterterrorism expert Farhana Qazi explores female extreme terrorists in her new book, Invisible Martyrs: Inside the Secret World of Female Islamic Radicals. Qazi, who is Muslim herself and works for the Counterterrorism Center, explores why some Islamic women join radical extremists. Qazi will discuss her book, available for sale and signing, at the Spy Museum. $12, 6:30 PM.
FILM The Library of Congress is screening the original Star Wars trilogy at the Thomas Jefferson Building this weekend: A New Hope on Thursday, The Empire Strikes Back on Friday, and Return of the Jedi on Saturday. There are several other events before each screening: characters in costume on Thursday night, a panel discussion, “The Politics of a Galaxy Far, Far away,” on Friday night, and Star Wars-themed crafts and activities all day Saturday for younger fans. The Whittall Pavilion will host a display of Star Wars materials on Friday and Saturday. Free (advanced registration recommended), films start at 7:30 PM nightly.
FRIDAY, SEPTEMBER 28
MUSEUMS The Smithsonian American Art Museum is showcasing the first major retrospective for an artist born into slavery with its new exhibit, “Between Worlds: The Art of Bill Traylor.” See 155 of Traylor’s works, just a sample of his large portfolio (at his death in 1949, he had created over 1,000 drawn and painted works of art). The world premiere of the film Bill Traylor: Chasing Ghosts will screen at the SAAM on Sunday, followed by a Q&A with filmmaker Jeffrey Wolf. Exhibit is open through March 17. Film screening: Sunday 9/30 at 3 PM.
BOOKS Politics and Prose is presenting a Latinx Author Series at its Union Market shop. On Friday, Ecuadorian author Gabriela Alemán will discuss her new feminist thriller, Poso Wells, which is her first full-length work to be published in English. Enjoy Latin American wine tastings after the reading, courtesy of local wine shop Grand Cata. Free, 7 PM. Latinx Author Series: through October 14.
PARTY The DC Public Library is closing out Banned Books Week with a cocktail party at Blind Whino. In addition to banned book-themed cocktails, enjoy a pop-up market of local retailers and crafts led by DCPL librarians. $60, 6:30 PM.
BOOKS Check out rare books at the 43rd Washington Antiquarian Book Fair at the Holiday Inn Rosslyn. Exhibitors from across the country will have first editions, autographed copies, and manuscripts of a variety of works, from 18th century Americana to dog- and cat-related pieces. $15 (weekend pass); through September 29.
SATURDAY, SEPTEMBER 29
MUSEUMS Two Japanese exhibits are opening at the Freer | Sackler this weekend. “Japan Modern: Photography from the Gloria Katz and Willard Huyck Collection” celebrates the gallery’s acquisition of a major Japanese photography collection with works dating from the 1920s to 1980s that capture Japan’s major shifts in the 20th century. Coinciding with the launch of the exhibit, associate curator Carol Huh will lead a gallery talk on Saturday at 2 PM. The second exhibit, “Japan Modern: Prints in the Age of Photography,” explores how the art of Japanese woodprinting was pushed to modernize after the introduction of photography and the printing press. Both exhibits open through January 21.
SPORTS WJFK, 106.7 The Fan celebrates DC sports with its fifth annual Fan Fest at The St. James Sports and Active Entertainment Center in Springfield. The station will be broadcasting live, while kids can participate in sports clinics (in soccer, football, basketball, and lacrosse) or a batting clinic with former Washington National Michael Morse. Current and former Washington Redskins including Chris Thompson and Clinton Portis will be signing autographs, and the Chad Dukes Beer Garden will be open. Free to attend (autograph tickets are $10 per player), 12 – 3 PM.
OPERA Since the Washington Nationals were mathematically eliminated from the playoffs last weekend, it’s now time to find other ways to enjoy Nationals Park. This weekend at “Opera in the Outfield,” the Washington National Opera will broadcast The Barber of Seville on the scoreboard screen; fans can sit on the outfield grass to watch the show. Free, 7 PM (gates open at 5 PM).
FESTIVAL The Fiesta DC Latino Festival has run for 45 years; this year’s festival was originally scheduled for September 15-16 but was rescheduled due to the threat of Hurricane Florence. Fiesta DC includes a Parade of Nations, featuring local dance groups, on Saturday. On Sunday, a street festival on Constitution Avenue between 9th St NW and 14th St NW will include vendors as well as many live performances. Parade (Saturday): 1-5:30 PM. Festival (Sunday): 11 AM – 7 PM.
ART Stay up late to check out the visual and performing arts in and outside with Art All Night. Find works in eight individual neighborhoods: Congress Heights, Deanwood Heights, Dupont Circle, H Street, Minnesota Ave, North Capitol, Shaw, and Tenleytown. Each neighborhood will have a different visual theme, so enjoy glowing lights at ShawGlows and check out vintage-inspired art in Deanwood Heights. Free, 7 PM (Saturday) – 3 AM (Sunday).
FOOD Try food at six different Adams Morgan locations on the Flavors of AdMo Food Crawl. Enjoy tapas-sized tastings—including vegetarian options—at neighborhood favorites El Tamarindo, Federalist Pig, Le Pop, NiceCream, BUL, and Zenebech. $79, 11 AM – 5 PM.
SUNDAY, SEPTEMBER 23
MUSEUMS Artist Glenn Ligon reframes imagery from slavery and civil rights into a modern context. His piece Untitled (I Am a Man) is inspired by signs carried by African-American sanitation workers in Memphis during a 1968 strike. Ligon will discuss this piece with professor Gregg Bordowitz from the Art Institute of Chicago at the National Gallery of Art. The discussion will be followed by a signing of Bordowitz’s new book about Ligon’s piece. Free, 2 PM.
BOOKS If you’re feeling powerless in today’s tumultuous climate, give Protest Kitchen a shot. The book explores the impact of a plant-based lifestyle on the environment. Learn ways that you can align your diet and lifestyle choices with your personal politics, including how to avoid chocolates that are produced with child labor and how to make your own cleaning supplies to avoid those tested on animals. One of Protest Kitchen’s authors, Carol Adams, will discuss her approach at East City Bookshop. Free, 4 PM.
FESTIVAL The 2018 Turkish Festival wraps up Turkish Heritage Month with a celebration of cuisine, music, dancing, and crafts. Check out the country’s culture on Pennsylvania Avenue between 12th and 14th Streets NW. Free, 11 AM – 7 PM.
LAST CALL: Here’s what’s closing this weekend
“Fractal Worlds” closes Sunday 9/30 at Artechouse.