Things to Do

Comedy, Astrophysics, and Bastille Day: Things to Do in DC, July 12-14

Plus: Get outside for a sculpture garden visit.

Illustration by Hannah Good.

Hello hello lovely readers!

We’ve got comedy, Bastille Day, and a Free Britney rally.

Hear from the super-encouraging yoga instructor Jessamyn Stanley.

Here’s what you should check out this week:

Think intergalactically: Ready for an existential crisis? Former NASA astrophysicist Hakeem Oluseyi digs into the mysteries of the universe in a lecture from Smithsonian Associates. He’ll chat about Einstein, Isaac Newton, dark matter, and quantum physics while also sharing his personal story connected to his newly released memoir, A Quantum Life: My Unlikely Journey from the Street to the Stars. Monday 7/12 at 6:30 PM; $15, buy tickets here.

Cue the laugh track: Eaton DC’s Wild Days bar will host Underground Comedy, the show that spotlights young and up-and-coming comics in the area. (You might remember it from the Big Hunt’s glory days.) The weekly stand-up event at the Eaton kicks off today; they will also host upcoming shows at Reliable Tavern and Wonderland Ballroom. Monday 7/12 at 8 PM; Free, find out more here.

Fresh take: Body-positive yoga instructor Jessamyn Stanley recently published Yoke: My Yoga of Self-Acceptance, a collection of essays about her journey through the overwhelmingly white industry. She runs Underbelly Yoga with a series of guided video classes (with funny directions like “back that ass up” while you’re mid-downward dog). Stanley will chat with sex educator Ericka Hart in this virtual book talk from Loyalty Bookstore. Tuesday 7/13 at 6 PM; $20-$22 (book included), buy tickets here.

Bring a sign: A rally to support Britney Spears is coming to the Lincoln Memorial on Wednesday. Learn more about the “Free Britney America” event here.

Fête nationale: France’s national holiday Bastille Day, which commemorates the start of the French Revolution in 1789, is July 14. Le Diplomate, La Vie, BRABO, and other area restaurants are toasting the celebration with meal specials, new cocktails, prix-fixe options, and more. Find where you can shout vive la France! in my coworker Maya Pottiger’s roundup here.

Look ahead: The Washington Monument will officially reopen for visitors on July 14. Read more about when and how to go here.

Summer fun: Beat the heat and find something fun to do on the water. We rounded up seven awesome ways to enjoy the great rivers around DC.

Something new: 

Annmarie Sculpture Garden. Photograph courtesy of Joann Foltz.

For the July issue, I wrote about some amazing sculpture gardens that are worth the drive from DC. Here’s an excerpt:

Not ready to go inside a museum? You can enjoy art in the great outdoors on a day or overnight trip to one of these artful destinations.

Baltimore Museum of Art

Two terraced gardens in the middle of Baltimore offer more than 30 modern sculptures by masters of the form, including Auguste Rodin, Joan Miró, Isamu Noguchi, and Alexander Calder. Distance from DC: 43 miles.

AnnMarie Sculpture Garden

Its first artwork was a bronze tribute to Chesapeake oyster-tongers. Nearly 30 years later, the Eastern Shore garden is home to pieces from the Hirshhorn and the National Gallery of Art. Distance from DC: 60 miles.

Ladew Topiary Gardens

More than 100 shrub sculptures (à la Edward Scissorhands)—trees shaped as seahorses, birds, and men in top hats—adorn this 50-year-old public garden in Monkton, Maryland. Tour gardens of irises, roses, azaleas, water lilies, and more. Distance from DC: 70 miles.

Glen Burnie Gardens

The seven-acre gardens at the Museum of the Shenandoah Valley in Winchester, Virginia, feature a series of “rooms”—including a water garden, a rose garden, and a statue garden full of Greek and Roman figures. There are also a handful of contemporary works in the spring garden. Distance from DC: 76 miles.

Read the full story here.

Thanks for reading! Tell me what you’re up to at home by dropping me a line at

Rosa is a senior editor at Bitch Magazine. She’s written for Washingtonian and Smithsonian magazine.