Things to Do

Things to Do in DC This Weekend (January 10-13): American Opera Initiative Festival, No Pants Metro Ride, and the DC Tattoo Expo

Get inked at the DC Tattoo Expo, which runs from January 11 to 13 at the Crystal Gateway Marriott. Photo courtesy of DC Tattoo Expo.


BOOKS New York Times bestselling author Jen Sincero will be at Sixth & I talking about her new book, You Are a Badass Every Day, a pocket guide of motivation and inspiration. The book is a collection of exercises and reflections to help readers stay focused on their goals. The event will be followed by a book signing. $18 ($35 with book), 7 PM.

BEER If you don’t know where to start with all the different styles of beer, check out the Beer! Drink & Learn event at City Winery. Learn about beer history and styles and try a colorful flight of local brews: a pilsner from Lost Rhino, a red ale from Evolution, an IPA from 3 Stars, and a stout from Atlas. 21+ only. $28, 6:30 PM.


TATTOO Get inked or pierced at the DC Tattoo Expo, which runs through Sunday at the Crystal Gateway Marriott. There will be over 200 artists on hand, including reality stars from Ink Master (such as Christian Buckingham, Duffy Fortner, and James Vaughn) and Tattoo Nightmares (Big Gus) as well as plenty of other local and national artists. Walk through the con and browse artists’ portfolios to get a sense of their work; some may be booked in advance, but many will have appointment times available for day-of, walk-up clients. Each day ends with tattoo-of-the-day contests, and Saturday night also features a Miss DC Pin-Up competition. Through January 13. Tickets: $30 per day or $60 for a three-day pass.

COMEDY Washington Improv Theater (WIT) presents a rotating series of performances over the next three weekends at the Atlas Performing Arts Center. Most notable is The Fourth Estate, a show that includes employees of the Washington Post and Fox News in its cast and explores how an improvised story becomes news. The rotating performances also include the improvised musical group iMusical, the all-female troupe Hellcat, and the improvised rock comedy Heavy Rotation. Through January 26. $15 in advance or $18 at the door.

OPERA The Kennedy Center presents the American Opera Initiative Festival this weekend, which features two different performances. On Friday and Sunday, check out the new hourlong opera Taking Up Serpents, which delves into the world of religious snake-handling. Saturday night features three new 20-minute operas that show different aspects of American life, such as a teenage pregnancy in a rural community and a woman recovering after a drug overdose. The evening will also include a Q&A with the artists and creative team. Through January 13. $19-$45.


MUSIC The Cornell Glee Club is celebrating its 150th(!) season with a tour that includes a show at Strathmore’s Music Center. The oldest student organization on Cornell’s campus, this ensemble performs a variety of classical and contemporary choral music; their sesquicentennial program will feature music that explores the passing of time. On this tour, the group will also premiere a new commission by Pulitzer Prize finalist Christopher Cerrone. $20-$40, 7:30 PM.

PERCUSSION If you’ve always wanted to try your hand at the steel pan, head over to the Edgewood Arts Building in Brookland for the PanTones Steel Band’s steel pan workshop. This community steel band will provide the instruments, teach techniques, and give the history and culture around this instrument from Trinidad. Everyone will be playing a few songs by the end of the evening. $25, 2:30 PM.


METRO There’s snow in the forecast for Sunday, but that won’t stop the 11th annual No Pants Metro Ride, which kicks off at Hancock Park at the L’Enfant Metro. The idea is simple: the group will head underground, hop on the metro, and drop trou. Bring a backpack or other bag to stow your pants, and remember to wear clean, family-friendly underwear– there will be photographers around, and you are still in public. If you’d prefer to keep your pants on, join the after-party happy hour at the Big Hunt at 5 PM or so. Free to attend (but make sure your SmarTrip card is loaded), 3 PM.

FILM EcoAction Arlington presents a screening of the film Idle Threat at the Arlington Public Library. This documentary looks at one man’s work in New York City to raise awareness about the wastefulness and health impacts of idling engines. The screening will be followed by a discussion. Free, 4:30 PM.

LAST CALL: Here’s what’s closing this weekend
“Nordic Impressions: Art from Åland, Denmark, the Faroe Islands, Finland, Greenland, Iceland, Norway, and Sweden, 1821–2018” closes 1/13 at the Phillips Collection

“New Nature” closes 1/13 at ARTECHOUSE

UPCOMING: You’re engaged?! Celebrate with us at Love Unveiled, the ultimate wedding showcase for all couples on January 27 at Mandarin Oriental, Washington DC. Visit for tickets before it sells out!