Things to Do

Best Things to Do in the DC Area 10/3-10/9: National Roller Skating Month, Rock the Park DC, and Unite the District Fest

Plus, spooky ghost tours and haunted houses.

A photo of the DJ at Rock the Park DC in 2021. Photograph courtesy of Sneakshot Photography for DowntownDC Business Improvement District.

Happy October, everyone!

There are officially two months left in the year, and there are a lot of fun things to do before we close out 2022. Let’s kick off the start of a new month in celebration of the childhood pastime roller skating and rock the park this weekend at a local two-day music festival.


Best Things to Do This Week

  1. National Roller Skating Month. Did you know that October is National Roller Skating Month? In celebration of the popular activity, events are being held this weekend where guests can wheel around at indoor rinks, attend a fashion show, learn about skating health and wellness at an expo, and see R&B legends Tony! Toni! Tonè! in concert (Fri-Sun, prices vary, various participating locations).
  2. Hillfest. The annual week-long city music conference returns with panel discussions, food, vendor shopping, and jazz music. Enjoy discussions throughout the week about arts policy, technology, and more. The festival will close out with a grand finale party at Garfield Park (Wed-Sat, prices vary, Capitol Hill).
  3. Unite the District Fest. The District’s beloved soccer team is throwing a party! You don’t want to miss this multi-day festival filled with arts, music, cooking competitions, and cuisine and brewery tastings (Fri-Sun, $45, Audi Field).
  4. The Till Trilogy series. Playwright Ifa Bayeza in partnership with the Mosaic Theater Company brings the civil rights story of Emmett Till to the stage with a series of plays. Audiences can choose between three different productions to attend beginning this week (Tues-Sun, $50+, Northeast).
  5. Rock the Park DC WKNDR. Attend a two-day festival at Franklin Park this weekend and jam to musical performances by local band TOB and DJ Geena Marie. The event is headlined by DJ Kenny Dope and DJ Jazzy Jeff (Sat-Sun, free, Downtown).


Want More Things to Do?

Budget-friendly. Warm up your sun salutations and practice balance at Yoga on the Magnolia Terrace (Tues, Thurs, Sat, $10+, Alexandria). Its the last chance to Rent the Runway and shop at the local pop-up for discounted designer clothing (Mon-Sun, free, Georgetown). Get educated on the preservation of the Anacostia River (Mon, free, virtual).

Spooky festivities. The Halloween countdown has begun! Get creeped out this season on a Ghost & Graveyard Tour of historic Old Town Alexandria (Mon-Thurs, $15 and $10 for kids, Alexandria) or learn about death and mourning in the 18th century at Carlyle House (Fri, $12, Alexandria). Attend the opening weekend of an immersive theatrical nightmare at this year’s The Sleepy Hollow Experience (Thurs-Sun, $34+, Roseland, Virginia). Learn about the history of ghost photos at a coffeehouse with art historian Beth Saunders (Wed, $13, Penn Quarter). Halloween hunt at a mansion and museum (Thurs-Sun, $35, Northwest). Live music, martial arts, and a movie screening of Friday the 13th in one event (Tues, free, Northeast).

Festivals and drinks. Travel to Virginia for an after hours taste of unlimited samples at the Fall Wine Festival & Sunset Tour (Fri, Sun, $43+, Mount Vernon). Cruise on the Potomac one last time before boat season closes (Fri, $35, Georgetown). Celebrate 10 years of the Snallygaster beer festival this weekend (Sat, $65, Downtown).

Arts and culture. Discover the life of sculptor and architect Maya Lin at the Smithsonian’s new biographical exhibition “One Life: Maya Lin(Mon-Sun, free, National Portrait Gallery). View a new display of about 120 oils, watercolors and drawings from painter John Singer Sargent (Mon-Sun, free, National Gallery of Art) or an exhibition on the paintings and works of Johannes Vermeer (Sat-Sun, free, National Gallery of Art). Catch “Lou Stovall: The Museum Workshop” before the exhibit closes (Tues-Sun, $16, Northwest).

Theater and shows. The Klein Theatre has a new production showing this month based on The Notebooks of Leonardo Da Vinci (Tues-Sun, $35+, Northwest). See the opening of TINA: The Tina Turner Musical at the National Theatre(Tues-Sun, $60+, Downtown). Or the premiere of Holiday at Arena Stage (Fri-Sun, $76+, Southwest). It’s the last call for Hamilton (Fri-Sun, $249+, Kennedy Center). Attend a ballet performance honoring music icon Hazel Scott (Fri-Sat, $30+, Downtown).

Music and concerts. Hip-hop artist Post Malone is coming to DC (Tues, $79+, Capital One Arena). Go to a go-go at a historic DC venue to see Rare Essence in full rhythm (Sun, $35, Howard Theatre). A women’s a cappella quintet from Zimbabwe is performing gospel and afro jazz (Fri, free, Kennedy Center).

Fun and games. Take a break from the work week and have some fun from the comfort of your home with a virtual trivia night (Fri, $15, virtual).

Get involved. Dance for a cause at Dance Loft on 14 in support of Domestic Violence Awareness Month. The Bollywood workout will help raise funds for DC-based organization, Asian/Pacific Islander Domestic Violence Resource Project (Sun, suggested donation $25, Northwest).

If you enjoyed these events, don’t forget to share this post with a friend on social media, and sign-up for our newsletter for more things to do.

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.