Things to Do

The ZooLights Truck and a New Holiday Market: Things to Do in Washington, November 26-29

Plus: Mil gracias.

Illustration by Hannah Good.

Hi friends!

We’ve got the ZooLights truck, drawing, and an outdoor artisans’ market.

There are a bunch of holiday lights to see around town.

Here’s what you should check out this weekend:

Morning workshop: Join artist Jill Galloway’s weekly figure drawing class hosted by the National Portrait Gallery. Open to everyone 13 and older, the class walks through tips and techniques for illustrating the body. Thursday 11/26 at 11 AM; Free, watch it on YouTube here.

A new market: The Kennedy Center’s Reach will transform into an outdoor holiday market starting on Black Friday. Explore locally made artworks, crafts, and foods on weekends. Victura Park, the Erik Bruner-Yang pop-up that’s been at the Reach during recent months, will be serving seasonal food, spiked cider, hot chocolate, and more. Friday 11/27 through Sunday, December 20; Free, learn more here.

Leave it all on the field: When was the last time you played kickball? Put on your game face and join a family-friendly Thanksgiving Kickball Tournament in Annandale’s Truro community. Friday 11/27 at 1 PM; Free, find out more here.

Shop around: Small Business Saturday will be in full swing around Washington. See what discounts, deals, and gifts DC businesses are offering online here. Learn more about what to expect around Washington here. Saturday 11/28 all day, various locations.

See the holiday truck: The annual National Zoo tradition ZooLights is going mobile this year, touring its light-up animals, including “Panda Claws,” on a festive truck that will travel around the city on weekend nights. ZooLights Express will visit one DC ward per day on Friday and Saturday nights from Friday 11/27 through December 19; Free.

A drive-through holiday: Wind your way through Seneca Creek State Park to see 3.5 miles of more than 450 holiday light displays in Gaithersburg’s Winter Lights Festival. The event website jokes that they’ve been “socially distancing since 1995,” when the festival first started. Friday 11/27 through December 31, $12-$20, buy tickets here.

It’s beginning to look a lot like Christmas: Find more holiday light displays and festive spots to safely celebrate the holiday season around DC here.

For the laughs: Local Peruvian American comic Erick Acuña, whose one-man show based on his life won awards at the 2019 Capital Fringe Festival, is releasing a short five-part web series with Washington Improv Theater, “This Zoom Life,” that he co-created with Stephanie Kozikowski and Martin Steger. Watch a group of friends navigate the challenges of work productivity, dating, and more during the pandemic. Available to watch on YouTube here.

Thank you: 


This year I’m especially grateful to you all for reading and supporting this newsletter throughout the last eight or so months that I’ve been writing it. While we’ve gone through an impossibly difficult time during the pandemic, I’ve been so thankful and appreciative of all of you who have reached out to me, whether it was simply to say hi or to share a recommendation on sci-fi authors. It’s been really rewarding to hear from you, and I’m overjoyed that we can chat about arts, culture, entertainment and politics in Washington—and, as always, Bad Bunny—together. (“A Tu Merced” is blasting in my headphones at the moment, if you want to know.) Sending love and good vibes to you and your loved ones today and every day; stay safe!

Thanks for reading! Tell me what you’re up to at home by dropping me a line at rcartagena@washingtonian.com.

Web Producer/Writer

Rosa joined Washingtonian in 2016 after graduating from Mount Holyoke College. She covers arts and culture for the magazine. She’s written about anti-racism efforts at Woolly Mammoth Theatre, dinosaurs in the revamped fossil hall at the Smithsonian’s Natural History Museum, and the horrors of taking a digital detox. When she can, she performs with her family’s Puerto Rican folkloric music ensemble based in Jersey City. She lives in Adams Morgan.