Things to Do

Best Things to Do in the DC Area 9/29-10/2: Taste of Bethesda, Silent Go-Go, and Hispanic Heritage Fiesta

Plus, reggae and folk music in Takoma Park.

Happy weekend, everyone!

Attention all caffeine lovers, it’s National Coffee Day. Check out the local deals and use the extra boost of caffeine energy to party and dance all weekend-long at a local food and music festival or late-night go-go.


Best Things to Do This Weekend

  1. Taste of Bethesda. The 31st annual food and music festival returns to downtown Bethesda with five stages of entertainment and nearly 40 participating restaurants. Festival-goers can try new menu items ranging from Spanish cuisine to breakfast crepes at this year’s event. There will also be tickets available for drink tastings (Sat, free, Bethesda).
  2. Takoma Park Street Festival. Groove to soul, blues, roots rock, reggae, and folk music at this weekend’s festival. Guests can shop for jewelry, art, home decor, and more at the vendor booths, munch on tasty bites at one of the featured food trucks or restaurants, and be a part of the event’s kick-off drum circle (Sun, free, Takoma Park).
  3. Silent Go-Go. The Creative Affairs Office closes out its 202 Creates month with a night inspired by DC’s official go-go music. The dance includes beats by the All in Band and sounds by DJ 3EZ (Fri, free but registration required, Northeast DC).
  4. Open Streets DC. Three miles of Georgia Avenue will be closed to cars for a community play day on the street. The route stretching to Barry Place will host hourly programs including yoga, double dutch, and pop-up bike lanes (Sat, free, Northwest DC).
  5. Hispanic Heritage Fiesta. Hispanic Heritage Month festivities are still underway. Enjoy an outdoor party at the Beatley Central Library Reading Garden in Virginia. There will be live music performances by Andean folk-music preservationists, along with crafts and food (Sat, free, Alexandria).
The restaurant Medium Rare at Taste of Bethesda in 2019. Photograph courtesy of Jenifer Morris.

Want More Things to Do?

Budget-friendly. Lounge on the plaza at Carlyle Crossing and enjoy live music at the Happy Hour Concert Series. Pets are welcome (Thurs, free, Alexandria). Halloween is near! That means it’s time to watch your favorite spooky movies. Bring your friends and kids to an outdoor showing of Hocus Pocus (Thurs, free, Northeast DC).

Arts and culture. The Arlington Arts Center is reopening and celebrating a new name. Attend the community celebration of the new Museum of Contemporary Art Arlington to view fall exhibitions, take a curator-guided tour, eat ice cream, and participate in art activities (Sat, free, Arlington). Journey through a multimedia exhibit at the opening of “Retracing the Steps That Were Taken—José Saramago 1922-2022” (Fri, $10, Dupont Circle). Presidential photographer Pete Souza is hosting a book discussion at Sixth & I (Sun, $14, virtual and in-person, Northwest DC). Award-winning poet Ada Limón gives her inaugural reading as the 24th Poet Laureate (Thurs, free, virtual).

History and heritage. Watch social justice documentary Why Is We Americans? and listen in on a presentation of The Book of Baraka: Audible Original Podcast with Newark Mayor Ras Baraka at Planet World Museum (Fri, $15, Downtown). The Till Trilogy Reflection Series continues this weekend with a performance by South African artists Refiloe Lepere and Itumeleng Moeketsi (Sun, free, MLK Library). Indulge in the culture and flavors of Hispanic and Latin America at Ice Cream Jubilee in honor of Hispanic Heritage Month (Thurs-Fri, $16, various participating locations). Chat with local chef Patrice Cunningham, teahouse owner LaTonia Cokely, and other Black women business owners about food and industry (Thurs, $12, Union Market).

Festivals and music. Get tickets to a piano concert for all ages (Sun, $29+ and half-price for kids, Prince William County). Experience a concert for health and cognition (Sun, $25+, Kennedy Center). Celebrate the ninth anniversary of Atlas Brew Works with live music, a DJ, and a dunk tank (Sat, $15+, Northeast DC). Cheers to Oktoberfest in the Gardens (Sat, $40, Silver Spring) or PIKEtoberfest (Sun, free, Bethesda). Try out specialty paellas before Jaleo’s food festival ends (Thurs-Sun, prices vary, Northwest DC).

Exercise and wellness. Brunch on the Go is back and will last all October. Put on your sneakers and and suit up for a fun cardio workout followed by a bubbly brunch. Plus, the walk or run tickets include two fanny packs (Sat, $65, Navy Yard). Wake up early for an outdoor yoga class on the lawn of City Ridge on Wisconsin Avenue (Sun, free, Northwest DC).

Fun and games. If you’re looking for something adventurous to do with the family this weekend, you can join the District Hunt citywide literacy-themed treasure hunt to solve outdoor puzzles and find hidden books (Sat-Sun, $30+, Downtown) or travel to Maryland for an apple festival (Sat, free, Harford County). Or, participate in an interactive butchering demo followed by dinner (Fri, $110+, Northeast).

Get involved. Visit the Mount Zion and Female Union Band Society cemeteries to participate in the “Black Georgetown Remembered” walking tour and reception with DC historian and author C.R. Gibbs. The event will highlight the historical significance of Black Georgetown and help support the African American Burial Ground Preservation Act HR 6805 & S 3667 (Sat, $25+, Georgetown).

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Briana A. Thomas is a local journalist, historian, and tour guide who specializes in the research of D.C. history and culture. She is the author of the Black history book, Black Broadway in Washington, D.C., a story that was first published in Washingtonian in 2016.