Things to Do

Best Things to Do in the DC Area 11/7-11/13: National Gallery Nights, Sherry Week, and DMV Black Restaurant Week

Plus, a round up of election night events.

Try a special menu of Sherry pairings and flights at Jaleo in celebration of Sherry Week. Photograph by Rey Lopez.

Happy Monday, everyone!

Are you ready to vote? Cast your ballot at your nearest voting center or mail-in drop box, and then check out the election night events happening around town. There’s also a number of food and drink specials going on for Sherry Week and DMV Black Restaurant Week.


Best Things to Do This Week

  1. National Gallery Nights. The final scheduled after-hours party at the National Gallery of Art is this week. If you missed the previous late-night gatherings, then be sure to grab tickets online or at the door to join in on the fun before the passes are gone. The theme is “Americana” and will feature a live mural creation by Chalk R!ot, pop-up poetry and diversity talks, tunes from the United States Navy Band, Country Current and DJ Baby Alcatraz, among other activities (Thurs, free, National Gallery of Art).
  2. Sherry Week. The 9th International Sherry Week will run through Sunday bringing Sherry-themed events to the DC area. Taste special cocktails and bites at various restaurants such as Jaleo, The Green Zone, Cranes, and McClellan’s Retreat. Or watch local bartenders in a sherry cobbler cocktail competition at Service Bar. You can also see a performance of La Llorona at Capitol Hill Arts Workshop. The evening includes pre- and post-show drinks and a discussion (Mon-Sun, prices vary, various participating locations).
  3. DMV Black Restaurant Week. Support Black-owned restaurants, Black caterers, managers, and chefs all weeklong during DMV Black Restaurant Week. This year’s theme is “Reshaping Our Community through Ownership and Luxury.” Enjoy prix-fixe three-course meals at participating restaurants, among other special deals and pop-ups across the metro region (Mon-Sun, prices vary, various participating locations).
  4. “Why We Serve” gallery at the Smithsonian. A new exhibit at the Smithsonian, “Why We Serve: Native Americans in the United States Armed Forces,” honors the generations of Native American veterans who served in the US armed forces since the American Revolution. Guests can learn about Native service members through paintings and photographs. The commemorative exhibition will run through November 2023 (Opens Thurs, free, National Museum of the American Indian).
  5. Live! At the Library. The Library of Congress’s Veterans History Project is presenting “Modern Warrior Live” on the eve of Veterans Day. The show is an immersive musical experience that chronicles the journey of a veteran (Thurs, free, Library of Congress).
National Gallery Nights in 2019. Photograph courtesy of National Gallery of Art.

Want More Things to Do?

Budget-friendly. Are you working on a writing deadline? Shut Up & Write! with local creatives at Solid State Books (Mon, free, Northeast DC). Or, joke around at a live and interactive comedy show (Mon, free, Northwest DC).

Election night fun. Midterm elections are afoot. After you cast your ballot, head to Mercy Me DC to get a complimentary presidential favorite cocktail (Tues, free, Downtown). Boundary Stone is adding the election coverage to their usual weekly trivia night (Tues, free, Northwest DC). Busboys and Poets is throwing watch parties across all of their nine locations; happy hour drink and food specials are included (Tues, free, various participating locations). Fight Club is encouraging you to “Eat and Drink Your Feelings” at their election-themed happy hour (Tues, free, Southeast DC). Union Pub is giving away a free beer to the first 200 people to arrive on election night; additional drink specials will be offered (Tues, free, Capitol Hill). Dance, mingle, and watch political coverage at The Park at 14th (Tues, free, Northwest DC).

Arts and culture. Pick up a copy of the new book, “The Activist’s Media Handbook,” and sit in on a conversation with author David Fenton at Busboys and Poets (Mon, free, Northwest DC). Join a discussion about women’s uprisings in Iran (Mon, $12+, Northwest DC). Hero Art Project is stopping in DC to honor healthcare workers who lost their lives during the Covid-19 pandemic. There will be a candlelight vigil, a mobile digital art gallery, an origami butterfly making station, and more memorial activities (Thurs-Sun, free, National Mall). View a visual diary at the Embassy of Greece of travel sketches, paintings, and prints from an artist’s experiences in Greece (Mon-Fri, free, Northwest DC).

Theater and shows. It’s the last call for Scena Theatre’s The Time Machine (Thurs-Sun, $15+, Northeast DC). Explore ways to live through cancel culture in the new stage play, Miss Richfield 1981: Cancel Cultured Pearls (Sat, $42, Northeast DC). Journey through a fairytale adventure at the new play, Into the Woods (Starting Wed, $40+, Arlington). Attend the opening of People, Places, & Things (Starting Wed, $75+, Northwest DC) or New Jack City live on stage (Thurs-Sun, $59+, The National Theatre). See the premiere of a modern take on one of Shakespeare’s romantic comedies in the play Much Ado About Nothing (starting Thurs, $77+, Northwest DC).

History and heritage. Celebrate Hip-Hop History Month at BlackRock Center for the Arts at their Ladies of Hip Hop Drag Show (Sat, $45, Germantown). Learn about Black soldiers in the Civil War from Holly Pinheiro, Jr., the author of The Families’ Civil War (Wed, $10, virtual). Explore the history of DC graffiti on a guided tour through the 14th Street Graffiti Museum (Sun, $17+, Northwest DC).

Music and concerts. The Millennium Tour has made its way to the DMV! Jam to live music from millennial R&B and hip-hop favorites (Sat, $62+, Fairfax). Get tickets to a concert featuring The Sometimes Island, Rock Creek Kings, and Mad Abbey (Wed, $12, The Wharf). Union Stage is presenting cosmic country project “Plains (Wed, $30+, Howard Theatre). Spend the day at Henny Crawl DC (Sat, $20+, U Street). Time travel to the roaring ’20s in a musical concert, Paris at Midnight: Jazz and Surrealism in the 1920s (Wed, $45, Kennedy Center). It’s the last chance to see the opera Il trovatore (Mon, $45+, Kennedy Center).

Get involved. Join bestselling author Fred Minnick in a unique whiskey-tasting experience. Guests will receive sensory training and learn about the history of bourbon. After, you can participate in Blind Bourbon tastings. All proceeds benefit the United Service Organizations (Thurs, $100, Nationals Park).

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.