Things to Do

Best Things to Do in the DC Area 2/2-2/5: DC Travel Show, “Bars and Measures” play, and Port City Brewing Party

Plus, a community skate night for the entire family.

Director of the Bars and Measures stage play, Reginald L. Douglas. Photograph courtesy of Mosaic Theater.

Happy February, everyone!

It’s officially Black History Month, and there are a ton of educational and entertaining things to do in the area to celebrate. You can also kick off the new month planning your next getaway at a travel show, or enjoy a night out with the kids at an ice-skating rink.


Best Things to Do This Weekend

  1. Washington DC Travel Show. Bring your #travelgram feed to life at the Washington DC Travel Show. International-travel experts, cruise lines, tour operators, and other travel providers will be on hand to showcase thousands of options for your next vacation. Also, there will be four theaters where you can meet travel celebrities such as Andrew McCarthy and pick up travel advice (Sat-Sun, $11+, free for children under the age of 16, Washington Convention Center).
  2. “Bars and Measures.” Playwright Idris Goodwin teams up with director Reginald L. Douglas to narrate a story about music and brotherhood in the new stage play Bars and Measures. The Mosaic Theater Company production opening this weekend is a moving interpretation of kinship, faith, and song (through February 26, $50+, Northeast DC).
  3. Port City Brewing Company party. Raise a glass to Port City Brewing’s 12th anniversary. The local company is hosting a party filled with food, live music, and beverages. Four music acts are on the weekend lineup, and you can enjoy delicious treats from food trucks such as Borinquen Lunch Box and Poppis Hot Sauce (Fri-Sat, free, Alexandria).
  4. Community Skate Night. Have a wintery blast at a family-friendly ice-skating event. The Canal Park ice rink will let the first 100 people to arrive enter and rent skates for free. There will also be live music by DJ CiCi. The event is in partnership with Capitol Riverfront BID (Thurs, free, Southeast DC).


Want More Things to Do?

Budget-friendly. Walk through Old Town Alexandria to shop deals from local boutiques and vendors (Sat-Sun, free, Alexandria). The jokes at Kelly’s Irish Times are free and the drinks are cheap (Thurs, free, Northwest DC). Browse vintage goodies at this pop-up market featuring live music and food (Sat, free, Northeast DC). Here’s a perfect combination: Art, Wine, and Cheese at Nepenthe Gallery (Thurs, free, Alexandria).

Arts and culture. Celebrate Black history and culture through spoken word (Sat, free, Northeast DC) or at a screening of Spike Lee’s film Do The Right Thing (Thurs, free, Cardozo). Attend the opening reception of Newly Selected Artists at Hillyer (Fri, free, Northwest DC) or the opening reception of “The Unseen(Fri, free, Alexandria). Contemporary artist Anne Lindberg asks “What Color is Divine Light?” in her new exhibition (Sat through July 1, free, Northwest DC). Visit the historic YMCA Anthony Bowen for an artist talk in the gallery (Sat, free, Northwest DC). Go to a Grammy’s watch party at Songbyrd (Sun, free, Northeast DC). Swap artworks, art supplies, frames, and more at Right Proper Brewing; there will be live music and food, too (Thurs, free, Northeast DC). View a screening of Go-Go City: Displacement & Protest in Washington, DC (Thurs, free, Northwest DC). Author Kymone Freeman discusses his new book Nineveh: A Conflict Over Water at Busboys and Poets (Sun, free, Takoma). Watch the movie Argo at the Spy Museum (Thurs, $20, Southwest DC).

History and heritage. The DC Black History Celebration Committee is starting the month with a special program at Westminster Presbyterian Church (Sat, free, virtual, Southwest DC). Watch the short film After Migration: Calabria, followed by a discussion with co-director and producer Walé Oyéjidé at the George Washington University Museum and the Textile Museum (Thurs, $15+, Northwest DC). Take a guided tour of Asian and American art (Sun, free, Smithsonian National Museum of Asian Art). Thurgood Marshall Civil Rights Center at Howard University Law School is hosting a social justice panel discussion (Thurs, free, Northwest DC).

Theater and shows. Watch a New York magazine’s fact-checkers in a comedic debate of truth versus fact in Lifespan of a Fact; stay after the show for a special audience talkback (Sun, free talkback, $50 for show tickets, Northwest DC). Uncover backstage theatrical magic with Signature Theatre’s production team (Thurs, free, virtual, Arlington). Vote the next Washington Improv Theater champion (Thurs, $15+, Northwest DC). A dating comedy talk show will answer the question: Is Cupid Stupid? (Thurs, $25, Northwest DC). Get tickets to a Comedy Rap Show (Fri, $13+, Northwest DC). Support emerging local dancers at Rhizome DC (Sat, $10+, Northwest DC). Catch Broadway Center Stage’s Sunset Boulevard while the show is in town (through Wed, $59+, Kennedy Center).

Bites and beverages. Groove to retro music and munch on tasty bites at Wilson Hardware’s Flashback Party (Sat, free, Arlington). Break the breakfast rules and have ice cream for breakfast at Jeni’s. The first 50 Splendid Rewards members to arrive will get a free limited-edition mug, and you can win a year of free ice cream if you wear pajamas to the event (Sat, free, Northwest DC). Salt & Sundry is hosting a a champagne tasting from Sparkle-ist at Union Market (Sat, free, Northeast DC). Decorate cookies and then eat them (Sun, $80, Georgetown).

Music and concerts. See pianist Sofya Gulyak live at the Embassy of France (Thurs, $15+, Northwest DC). Party with Afrojack at Echostage (Fri, $52+, Northeast DC). Opera Lafayette presents the DC show of Pergolesi; there’s a pre-concert lecture and a post-show reception, too (Thurs, $30+, reception is $35, Kennedy Center). Don’t miss A Night at the Symphony with Mozart & Dvorak (Fri, $25+, Wharf). Listen to live music at The Pocket (Sat, $12+, Northwest DC) or at Comet Ping Pong (Sun, $24, Northwest DC). Experience the sounds of southern gospel and blues at the Voices of Mississippi concert (Sat, $24+, Bethesda). The National Philharmonic celebrates Sergei Rachmaninoff’s 150th birthday with a concert (Fri, $19+, Bethesda).

Game night. Neighborhood trivia is happening at Metrobar (every Thurs, free, Northeast DC). Play to win this Friends-inspired trivia at Atlas Brew Works (Thurs, free, Ivy City). It’s board game night at Mr. Henry’s (Sun, $10, Capitol Hill).

Things to do with kids. In recognition of Black History Month, children can sculpt art to the beat with self-taught artist Sarah Jones (Sun, free, Capitol Hill). Go on a scavenger hunt for heartfelt items at the O Street Museum (Thurs, $40, Northwest DC). The entire family can enjoy hot chocolate, s’mores, ice-skating, ice sculpture demonstrations, and music at the Ice-Travaganza (Sat, free, Reston). The National Symphony Orchestra presents Beauty and the Beat (Sat-Sun, $20, Kennedy Center).

Get involved. Participate in the 24-mile George Washington birthday run. All of the proceeds help support veterans and youth programs facilitated by the Alexandria American Legion Post 24 (through February 28, $24, virtual).

If you enjoyed these events, please 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.