News & Politics

Washingtonian Today: Goodbye, Cobalt. Hello, Peak Bloom.

Photograph by Evy Mages

About Washingtonian Today

Washingtonian Today is not just another political news roundup. Instead, this daily morning brief provides local context on national news, catches you up on what’s happening at Washingtonian, points you toward super duper awesome things to do around town, and lets you in on some special events going on in-house. Sign up here to receive Washingtonian Today in your inbox every morning.

Good morning, and happy Wednesday!

Cobalt goes dark: Long-running DC gay club Cobalt has closed its doors. Owner Eric Little broke the news in a Facebook post yesterday, citing the sale of Cobalt’s building and the redevelopment of an adjoining building: “With the combination of the sale of the buildings the start of demolition, costly infrastructure repairs and upgrades that we would need to shoulder to remain open for the short remainder of our lease (without an opportunity to extend the lease) along with a slow decline in sales we decided it was the right time to close the business to focus on our other businesses and some personal family needs.”

Little cites the evolution of nightlife trends in the city—Town Danceboutique closed its doors last summer —as partial reasons for the club’s untimely demise: “The gay bar industry has been changing over the past few years with the popularity of dating apps, changing social norms, and pop-up parties/events at non-gay venues and we applaud these evolutions as positive progress.”

The building will be redeveloped for residential use.

I’m your author, Brittany Shepherd. Email me at and follow me on Twitter. Subscribe to the newsletter.

It’s nearly cherry blossom season, folks. Tourists and locals will descend upon the Tidal Basin to snap a cute shot. But when exactly should you plan your perfect Instagram session? The National Park Service will announce its prediction at a press conference today. Meanwhile, the Capitol Weather Gang predicts peak bloom will come between April 1 and 5, with peak of the peak on the 3rd.  If you don’t feel like elbowing through crowds, here are some hacks, or you can just go to the cherry-blossom-themed pop-up bar.

What’s on my mind: Who are the archetypes of people you’ll encounter on the Metro? This Reddit user has some thoughts.

What we have cooking at Washingtonian:

Our pick for things to do around town:

BOOKS Queer Eye culture expert Karamo Brown releases his memoir on Tuesday. In Karamo: My Story of Embracing Purpose, Healing, and Hope, he shares the culture of his upbringing and how he came to help others adjust their own self-images and mindsets. Brown will speak about his life with NPR’s Sam Sanders at Sixth & I. $40 (includes a pre-signed copy of the book), 7 PM.

Good reads:

Yes, the armed millennials of Instagram is a thing. (Washington Post Magazine)

Big events from Washingtonian:

In last week’s chat, our food critic Ann Limpert talked great Chinese takeout in DC, Ethiopian hotspots in northern Virginia, and what to do with guests who insist on putting mountains of ice in their white wine. Join her again this Friday at 11, and leave your questions now!

Do you really love the Sedgwick pizza from All Purpose? Love the colorists at Immortal Beloved? Our annual readers poll is now live–take it and let us know your favorite things in Washington. You could win two tickets to our fabulous Best of Washington party in June.

Staff Writer

Brittany Shepherd covers the societal and cultural scene in political Washington. Before joining Washingtonian as a staff writer in 2018, Brittany was a White House Correspondent for Independent Journal Review. While she has lived in DC for a number of years now, she still yearns for the fresh Long Island bagels of home. Find her on Twitter, often prattling on about Frasier.