Nightlife Agenda: The last long weekend of summer

August 26

This week's essential DJs, bands, dance nights and parties.

The Gibson
The Gibson serves boozy adult popsicles, all-you-can-eat barbecue and summery cocktails on its patio on Labor Day. (Photo by Stephanie Breijo)

Tuesday, August 26
Today is National Dog Day, which seems like a good excuse for a happy hour. Make that Yappy Hour: The Loews Madison Hotel welcomes humans and their canine companions from 5:30 to 7:30 p.m. for drinks and snacks. Humans can sample appetizers and purchase discounted "dogtails," while pups can sample "chef-inspired treats" and a "hydrant bar with designer H2O." Adoptable dogs will be on hand for a meet-and-greet, and local dog boutiques will show off their wares. A portion of proceeds will be donated to local rescue programs. Admission is free, but you're asked to RSVP.

Northern Virginia has a dearth of bars for gay and lesbian residents. But there's a brand-new option in Arlington, thanks to Iota. Last week, the Clarendon concert venue launched LGBTuesdays, a happy hour with half-price appetizers and drink specials from 7 to 9 p.m. VJ Mikey's "Bar A" Video Wall features projected music videos until 1 a.m. Grab one of the love seats on the stage or head out to the patio with a drink. Admission is free.

Wednesday, August 27
When club music migrated from Baltimore to parts further north, it mutated into a new branch of the frenetic, sometimes raunchy, underground dance genre. Coming up in the club music scenes of Jersey and Philly, DJ Sliink made his own lane by incorporating pop and R&B into his club productions. His remixes are heavy-duty DJ tools for maximum party detonation. Catch him at Flash with New York mixtape legend Green Lantern as well as D.C. talents DJ Alizay, Mista Selecta and Beltway Banditz. The club's doors open at 9 p.m. Tickets are currently $10, and will cost $15 at the door.

Thursday, August 28
Throughout the summer, the D.C. Public Library has been interviewing longtime residents about their experiences at U Street's nightclubs and concert halls from the 1940s through the 1970s – or, as the library puts it, "U Street Memories from Duke Ellington to Marvin Gaye." They're celebrating this oral history project tonight at Busboys and Poets: WPFW DJ Rusty Hassan and Georgetown African American History professor Maurice Jackson will discuss the neighborhood's history, while the hard-swinging Greater U Street Jazz Collective and guitarist Greg Gaskins provide the music. Admission is free, and the talk runs from 6:30 to 9:30.

DJ 2-Tone Jones is a disciple of vintage hip-hop and old-school kung-fu movies. Over the years, he's made mixtapes and hosted events that combined the two disciplines. His latest project is a monthly event called Can I Kick It? at Marvin, which combines screening retro kung-fu films in the bar and on the rooftop deck while 2-Tone drops funk, soul and hip-hop records. This time, the features are Jean Claude Van Damme's "Blood Sport" and the epic "Shaolin vs. Lama." Movies play from 8 to midnight, and while there's no cover, you're asked to RSVP.

Malmaison, the French restaurant and dance club located under the Whitehurst Freeway in Georgetown, is readying a new happy hour: half-price champagne cocktails, $5 house wine and beer, and appetizers for $6 and less. Get your first taste this Thursday from 5 to 7:30 p.m. at a party featuring Django Reinhardt-style jazz from the Hot Club of D.C. After that, the happy hour runs from 5 to 7:30 Wednesday through Friday.

Summer doesn't officially end until Sept. 21, but for most people, Labor Day weekend is the last hurrah. That's especially true of some of our favorite summer events, including the National Building Museum's BIG Maze and Hill Country's Backyard BBQ on the museum's lawn, which say goodbye to D.C. this weekend. Combine the two at the Building Museum's last Late Night of the season: The Big Maze will be open from 5 to 9 p.m., along with the museum's other exhibitions. Outside, Hill Country serves up smoked brisket, margaritas and Shiner beers while the Annapolis soul and funk band Higher Hands performs.

Saturday, August 30
As record fairs become more common, it becomes harder and harder to tell them apart. The Instant Vintage Record Fair offers two unique twists: Each featured vendor is also a DJ, and each of these DJs' sets will consist of records they're selling. Get really analog at Liv from noon to 6 p.m. and remember to bring cash.

DJ Neville Chamberlain -- aka DJ Neville C -- has become a fixture at Marvin and Cafe Saint-Ex, but his roots in the neighborhood go much deeper, back to his days spinning at State of the Union, one of the funkiest and most original clubs ever to hit U Street. When State closed in the '90s, Neville moved to 14th Street's Metro Cafe, a theater and dance club that spawned DJ nights like the Mousetrap, and Bliss, which is now monthly at U Street Music Hall. The point of this trip down memory lane is that Neville is spinning a party on the Black Cat's backstage this Saturday called Back in the Day, where he promises "old-school funk, soul, disco, hip-hop and go-go -- echoes of State of the Union and the Metro Cafe." Get ready for a history lesson, young people. Doors open at 9:30, and it costs $5.

Sunday, August 31
With no work or school for most people on Monday, Sunday is the new Saturday. (Remember that bars can stay open until 4 a.m. on Sunday night.) Here are a few ways to spend the unofficial last weekend of summer:

You can't have a Labor Day holiday weekend without Daylight, and the soul classics dance party has adapted well to its new Georgetown home at Gypsy Sally's. DJ Divine and DJ Source bring it back to the essence of classic '70s and '80s dance music, going deeper than the standard old school set. This Daylight features a live set by singer Tamara Wellons. Admission is $10, but an optional $15 ticket includes an open bar from 7 to 8 p.m.

Blaqstarr, Billy the Gent, Spinser Tracy and The Clown Prince are among the DJs rocking Baltimore Club, moombahton, EDM and hip-hop at the Velvet Lounge's free Tropixxx day party. Happy hour drink specials run from 3 to 6, but the music will keep going long after that.

Feel like cooling off? Brody Jenner – who recently spent his 31st birthday DJing at a Dave and Busters in Hollywood – is the special guest host at the Adult Swim Pool Party at the Capitol Skyline Hotel, along with DJ William Lifestyle. Tickets are $25 in advance and $30 at the door. A table requires a $500 minimum for up to 10 people.

Patty Boom Boom's Batti Party returns for a night of reggae, soca and dancehall to raise money for LGBT organizations in Jamaica. Doors open at 9 p.m., and the rum punch and Caribbean beats flow until 4 a.m.

Love karaoke, but tired of the usual hip-hop, oldies and pop hits? Indie Rock Karaoke is taking over DC9's main stage this week, offering a chance to sing along to Franz Ferdinand, the Gossip and other rocking tracks. The best performers -- not just the best singers -- take home vinyl records. The fun begins at 8, and it's free to participate.

Monday, September 1
On Labor Day weekend, Monday Funday replaces Sunday Funday. And our pick for the afternoon is the Gibson's Family Reunion Labor Day Cookout. The $10 ticket includes all-you-can-eat barbecue and sides, with boozy adult popsicles and summer drinks available for purchase. Doors open at noon; cocktails and entertainment will be offered until 8.

Fritz Hahn has covered bars, drinks and nightlife for the Washington Post Weekend Section since 2003, but he also writes about everything from Civil War battlefields to sailing classes. You can find him on Twitter and Instagram.
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