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Transcript

Got Plans?

With the Entertainment Guide Staff
washingtonpost.com
Thursday, April 8, 2004; 1:00 PM

Every Thursday at 1 p.m. ET, washingtonpost.com's Entertainment Guide experts share their best bets for local flavor, great dates and family fun. Got plans? Great. Need plans? Just ask. We have the skinny on the bars and clubs, concerts, kitchens, theaters and special events that keep life interesting. We're going out gurus, and we're at your service.

Of course, we're happy to answer questions about local entertainment, but we need to hear from you, too. Introduce us to the coolest DJ or the fastest bartender you've encountered. Sound off on the week's best concert or the city's best burger. Tell us about the best place to amuse little kids or a big art fan. Together we can plan fun ways to spend weekdays, weekends, dates and holidays. The pleasure is ours, and yours.

Each week a different guru will act as host or hostess, but the entire staff is at your service. If you're looking for more ideas, see the Entertainment Guide.

Submit your questions and comments before or during the discussion.

Editor's Note: Washingtonpost.com moderators retain editorial control over Live Online discussions and choose the most relevant questions for guests and hosts; guests and hosts can decline to answer questions.

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The Going Out Gurus: Spring has arrived and you've got an extra hour of daylight, so how are you celebrating? Cherry Blossoms? An Easter Egg Roll? Baseball? There's a full house of gurus at the ready today -- Kate, Anne, Lynette, Fritz, Rhome, Joe, Janet, Jen, Alexa and Maura (that's me). Fire away.

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Washington, D.C.: I need a place (on the Hill preferably) that's clean and cheap for manicures. I haven't been able to find any cheap Asian manicure places here. Do they exist?

The Going Out Gurus: Try Bubbles. The manicures are reasonable.
-- Janet

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Washington, D.C.: Hey Gurus! Love the chats. Do you know of darkrooms that are available for hourly rates? I've got all of this black and white film that I want to print myself (and can do so much better than CVS) but I don't know where to go. Thanks so much.

The Going Out Gurus: This is a question after my own heart. (Note to self: Did I write this?)

Dear D.C., I've been looking for the same thing and I've had no luck outside of "open darkroom" classes. The Smithsonian Associates has reasonable rates (8 week sessions starting April 22 are about $220; each session is 3 hours), as does Arlington County Parks and Recs.

I had hoped for a "drop in" situation, but have had no luck calling around. Anyone out there willing to share the secret? -- Kate

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For Woman seeking Wedding Gown (4/1) ...: She might get lucky here.... Bethesday/Redline
April 23-24
2nd Annual "Brides Against Breast Cancer" Charity Wedding Gown Sale
Benefits the Making Memories Foundation's "Dream Fulfillment Fund" granting wishes for women and men with metastatic (terminal) breast cancer. "The Ballroom," 5521 Landy Lane, Bethesda, MD. Friday 12-8pm, Saturday 10am-6pm. Features over 2,000 name brand and designer gowns, donated by manufacturers, bridal shops, and individuals from across the nation to be shown and sold. Prices for the gowns range from $49 to $1,000, including hundreds of beautiful, new, designer gowns that would retail for more than $4,000. More than half the gowns at this sale are brand new gowns. 703-597-2775.

The Going Out Gurus: For the woman ISO a wedding gown, here's a great option.

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On my way outta D.C.: Dear Wise Gurus-
I am on my way out of town to visit family for the weekend. Do you have any suggestions for a nice host/hostess gift for my relatives letting me stay at their beach pad? they are very hip 30-somethings and i am a poor 23 year old.....i want to give them something nice, but not something that is going to break the bank. Also, any ideas for a 2 year old? thanks so much.
have a lovely weekend!

The Going Out Gurus: Check out Chocolate Moose. I think it's one of the best places in town to find fun, inexpensive gifts.

-- Janet

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Washington, D.C.: I've heard that Cafe Atlantico has an all-you-can-eat tapas option at certain times on the weekends. Is this true?

The Going Out Gurus: Cafe Atlantico has a Latino dim sum brunch on Saturdays and Sundays that is either a la carte or a fixed amount (around $35 or so per person) for a tasting menu for the entire table. It is this latter that feels more like the all-you-can-eat. Brunch is 11:30-2:30 both days. -- Alexa

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Washington, D.C.: I'm looking for a floor hockey league to join. Know of any in the area?

The Going Out Gurus: Hi Washington. Howard County has roller hockey leagues for adults (18+) and high school kids. Call 410-313-4715. Arlington County also has a floor hockey program for adults. Call 703-228-1809. If our faithful chatters know of other programs, please chime in. Thanks, Lynette.

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Bride who needs help!: Hi Gurus! You guys are great! I want to have a bridal luncheon for my bridesmaids (12 of them!) the day before my wedding (on a Friday). I am looking for a place that is about $15-$20 a person for lunch, but has a feminine feel to it and possibly some cozy couches or laid back furniture so it would feel more like a nice living room vs a restaurant. Can you help me with some suggestions?

The Going Out Gurus: Dear Bride, you don't say anything about where you are or when the wedding is, but I'm going to assume that it's happening in the summer. The Tabard Inn comes at once to mind because it is really one of the prettiest places. Having lunch for $15 might be a bit of a stretch here, but if it were a light one, then perhaps it could be done. Also they have a dear little walled patio that is choice on a warm day. Out in Falls Church, there's 2941 that has a great feel -- by a lake, with a patio overhung with tall trees etc. etc. Perhaps give me a little more info and I'll do some more thinking. -- Alexa

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Woodbridge, Va.: Is there such a "hang-out spot" that plays Black Gospel music and possibly indulge in a little eating? I'm looking for a nice spot with other Christians to visit for a "Sunday Dinner" type of atmosphere after services on the weekend. A place where we can just relax, but not feel as if we're attending service all over again.

The Going Out Gurus: Were you listening to NPR this morning too, WB?
Short of joining a church, I can think of Gospel Brunch at the Corcoran Gallery of Art. It's a buffet (per person about $25), with Gospel accompaniment from a local Church. The accoustics are not good and the food is fine, not special, but if you are willing to leave your seats and stand near the main stairs, the performers spread the sunshine. Your brunch entitles you entry to the galleries, a particular pleasure while the masterful Quilts of Gee's Bend show is still with us (closes May 17). Gospel Brunch has three seatings, take the first one.

I've had less luck find you details about H2O's reported monthly Sunday Gospel Brunch. Anyone? - Kate

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Sicklerville, NJ: Are there any places around the DC Metro area to go horseback riding? I haven't gone in years, but would like to try as it gets warmer...

The Going Out Gurus: Sure Sicklerville. Check this list of locations. Right in the District is the Rock Creek Park Horse Center which provides both horse and pony rides and is open for the season. Lynette

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Arlington, Va.: What can you tell me about Chadwicks? I hear the scallops and chicken are pretty tasty!;

The Going Out Gurus: I could tell you that I'm not a big fan, but that would seem negative. Let's hear a more varied response from the group.... -- Alexa

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Washington, D.C. : Hi Gurus,

I have a few questions I hope you can answer.
1. I thought I read that the Clyde's groups has $1 burgers one night of the week. First, which night and second, does it include Old Ebbit?

2. I just stopped by Local 16 last night for a drink on the rooftop deck but did not get a good feel for the place. Can you fill in some details for me (usual clientele, menu, etc.)?

Thanks, and have a great weekend!

The Going Out Gurus: 1. When I called for an update, I was told Clyde's no longer has happy hour specials, sorry.

2. I really like Local 16, especially when the large patio is open. The two-level bar and club gets a mix of the hip, Europhile Eighteenth Street Lounge crowd and regular folks who live on U Street (albeit those who can drop $6-12 for cocktails and $5 for beer). Best night to go is probably Saturday, when Desmond Williams is spinning rare grooves and loungey exotica upstairs, but the gorgeous bar is less slammed earlier in the week. -- Fritz

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Bethesda, Md.: What's the deal with Montgomery's Grille? It has been looking closed for the past several weeks, but someone told me that couldn't be. I tried calling their number, but there was no answer. Will the patio reopen for the spring/summer months, or is this spot totally done for? Thanks.

The Going Out Gurus: Knock your friend over with a feather, but it's closed. The owners claim that it was less popular after the smoking ban, but really, aside from the terraced patio, there wasn't much of a reason to hang out at MG. -- Fritz

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Washington, D.C.: Greetings! This is not a question but more a review of something....has anyone else seen Jewish Girls Gone Bad at the Warehouse theater? I saw it last weekend and while it was clear many of the actors had some good talent, the show overall was AWFUL. Don't waste your money...it is a shame that with such a good idea, they could not have made it funnier or worth your time. At some points, I actually felt embarrassed for the actors as people walked out in the middle. Hopefully there will be better theater choices coming our way....

The Going Out Gurus: Ouch ... or rather, oy. It's never good when people leave in the middle of a show. Perhaps you might go back to the Warehouse this weekend for Renegade Theater's "Comic Briefs," which sounds like a stitch. I love Christopher Durang, and two of the short plays were written by him. -- Jen

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Chocohol, I.C.: What's the scoop on the "chocoholics" buffet(s) on Capitol Hill? I read about one or two at the hotels there, and am curious if it is a good destination spot for my chocoholic parents who are in town next weekend. Is it truly a dessert buffet - as in serve-yourself-all-you-can-eat - and is it worth the price/visit? Do you need reservations? Help, please!;

The Going Out Gurus: Next weekend, yes. The Capitol View Club at the Hyatt Regency Washington is currently under renovation; it opens on April 12. The restaurant will be open for dinner 6 to 10 p.m., and the chocoholics buffet itself is $15. A neat idea, and a view to boot. -- Anne

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Downtown D.C. 20001: Hey Gurus! Thanks for the suggestion for going to Aroma on a Friday night. Loved the vibe and deejay! Can you please suggest any other laid back lounges that is similar to Aroma that plays hip hop or anything old school on a Thursday or a Friday? I may go out tonight and tomorrow.

The Going Out Gurus: Check for when the FunkDC kids are playing Bossa. They're usually there on Thursday. Bossa is a great destination any day of the week though, but those cats are the only ones doing hip-hop related stuff in that space. The upper level at Bar Nun on Fridays is still winning hard for this niche. Ellington plays hard to get progressive soul that appeals to the non-mainstream heads. If you want earlier in the week options, hit Felix on Mondays and the Reef (lower level) on Tuesdays. - Rhome

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Dark Room, D.C.: I might be wrong but I think Capitol Hill Arts Workshop might offer some drop in dark room time. Worth a call anyway.

The Going Out Gurus: Genius, you. Of course.

The Capitol Hill Arts Workshop does have an open darkroom. In order to use it, one must sign up for an orientation session with the manager, professional photographer of note, Bruce McKaig; pay a $20 registration fee and an additional $8/2 hours usage. Darkroom time must, of course, be booked ahead. Give CHAW a call: 202-547-6839.

Thanks. -- Kate

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Frizzy in Washington, D.C.: I'm considering getting that japanese thermal hair straightening thing for my horrifically frizzy/wavy hair. Suggestions as to where I ought to go? Any horror stories?

The Going Out Gurus: If you must, Roche Salon does offer them, and they're pretty dependable. However, curly hair is very in this season and on into fall. You may want to wait to go straight.
--Janet

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Live music????: What are the best options for live blues,
funk, or jazz this weekend in the DC area?

The Going Out Gurus: Go see the Funky Meters at the 9:30 on Saturday. Or the Nasar Abadey Quartet at Twins tomorrow and Saturday.

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Dupont and Loving It: Hey GOGs!; I read your column every week and love all the great tips. Hate to ask a Q that may have been covered in the past, but I find myself in possession of a most hideous and most -huge- bridesmaid dress. It needs major alterations, I could fit two of me inside. Can anyone recommend a good, reliable, honest, and decently-priced tailor? Doesn't have to be Dupont - I'll travel for a great tailor - but would love her/him to be NW DC or local-ish. Thanks much!;

The Going Out Gurus: I'd suggest starting by checking rates at your favorite drycleaner. Readers, let's hear from you.

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Washington, D.C.: Hey GoGs - I forgot to check in with you ... a couple weeks ago some friends and I checked out DC9. The bar was great, but pretty much empty. (not that this is always a bad thing) And we were there at prime dark bar hours. Off night or typical?

The Going Out Gurus: I think DC9 ebbs and flows, depending on the band and DJ. When I saw the Phobes, there was a decent crowd. Another night, it was kind of empty. I like the downstairs bar, with the jukebox that goes from Iron Maiden to Johnny Cash to Morrissey to the Liars, but the upstairs -- with leather couches and cool murals -- is much better. Also, they have DJs spinning on the weekends, and bands playing early (like 8 p.m.). All in all, I hope the place does well. -- Fritz

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Arlington, Va.: The Thomas Jefferson Community Center on Second Street in South Arlington is one of the best darkrooms in the area. The equipment is good, the staff helpful, and the fellow printers typically very good. They have several-hours long drop-in sessions during the week/weekend.

The Going Out Gurus: I go to TJ too, but less convenient for someone in the District. Rates for you Arlingtonians are super reasonable. As a Washingtonian, I pay more.

I agree, though , the printers there are excellent (and patient with a novice like me). -- Kate

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U-Street: Capital Hill Arts League has a darkroom available - very cheap if I recall. www.chaw.org

The Going Out Gurus: Thanks U.

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Washington, D.C.: Shopping-related question (sort of) for Janet. By any chance do you know if there is anywhere in town that will repair umbrellas?

The Going Out Gurus: Hi, there,
Thanks for asking. I don't know of any place that specifically repairs umbrellas. You could try a shoe repair shop or unless the umbrella is particularly valuable (is it a Burberry or something), I would recommend just getting another.
--Janet (a k a Mary Poppins)

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Washington, D.C.: I have a question- do all of you go around together in a pack, or do you each specialize in an area of activities and nightlife? My friend's girlfriend claims you guys all go out together every night, but to me it would make more sense if you each had your own social circle and could write about diverse activities from unique perspectives. Can you enlighten us?

The Going Out Gurus: Not only do we go around in a pack, we even live together in a group house. Alexa packs all of our lunches before we go to work each day. And Fritz fills our thermoses with drinks that no one has ever heard of. It really is a wonderful life.

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Arlington, Va.: Hey Gurus,

I think I remember reading about a program for discounted tickets to theater events for people under 30 (or mid 20 something) but I can't find any information now. Do you guys know anything about this? Do you know if it applies to events at the Kennedy Center? I'm trying to save some money for myself and some friends on opera tickets. Thanks for your help!;

The Going Out Gurus: You may be thinking of the programs at Arena Stage or Round House, which are described in this feature. If you're looking for discount opera tickets, check the TICKETPlace listings: they're selling seats to "La Cenerentola," but they may go quickly. -- Jen

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Dupont Circle, Washington, D.C.: Gogs -- LOVE your chats. You guys always have the skinny on all palces fun in DC.

My question: About to trun 26 and looking for a great dance place to go celebrate. I really love Red, but want to expand my horizons a bit. Any other places with a similar dance and good music/ atmosphere in DC.

Thanks for your help!!

The Going Out Gurus: Lemur Lounge, Mantis and Anzu come to mind. For the latter, call first to see which DJs are playing when you want to go. Are you a house head? - Rhome

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Rockville, Md.: Heading to Annapolis for the weekend for my husband's b-day. Can you suggest any NICE (price not an issue) restaurants for dinner, or any websites that will help. I asked Tom, but you guys are much nicer and he ignored me.

The Going Out Gurus: Hi, there,
I just happen to know some places in Annapolis. Probably your best bet for a celebratory dinner would be O'Leary's
--Janet

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Farragut Square, Washington, D.C.: The eyebrow question comes up every week, and I have never recommended Donna at Last Tangle in Washington because I'm afraid I'll never get another appointment with her... but if you need re-shaping or waxing or any skin care services, she's the greatest. An eyebrow wax is $18, somewhere between the spa price and the nail joint down the block, and the personal care is worth it.

Hey Gurus - please consider adding Capital Action (and "The Noodle Club") to your young volunteering options! It's a great group, varied activities, and their motto is "building community through social action." (http://www.capitalaction.org/)

The Going Out Gurus: The eyebrow secret source is out. Take note, all you people in search of the best brows.

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Cleveland Park, Washington, D.C.: You guys always come up with the best ideas! It's the last weekend of the Cherry Blossom Festival and there are plans for us to watch the fireworks on the waterfront on Saturday night. Suggestions for places to watch and places to eat/drink would be so appreciated.

The Going Out Gurus: My top spot would be H2O's patio, which wraps around three sides of the former Hogate's Restaurant, now a top-flight upscale restaurant, lounge and dance club. The patio's free grill (hot dogs, burgers) and open bar doesn't start until 9, but you could always go early and have a beer or cocktail while you watch the fireworks, and tuck into the grub afterwards. Also in the area is Cantina Marina, a cool outdoor restaurant that's literally on the water and serves up good seafood and decent beer. -- Fritz

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Washington, D.C.: Howdy -- Do you all have any background info on the now-well-sold-out Dave Chappelle booking at the Improv? I am on several e-mail notification lists -- including the Improv's -- and never saw it coming. A friend of mine was at the Improv recently and also saw nothing about it. Was it just completely inside, or did we miss something?

The Going Out Gurus: This is a great question, D.C. We didn't see it coming either. If we had, several gurus would have tried to get tickets, too. Guess we'll just have to comfort ourselves with episodes of "Chappelle's Show." (By the way, did you see it last night with Wayne Brady? That was bizarre, but rather amusing.) -- Jen

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Arlington, Va.: Hey Gurus!; I somehow managed to score tickets to Seinfeld in Baltimore this Saturday. Any suggestions for a moderately priced place for dinner beforehand? I'm more familiar with the places right around Camden Yards.

The Going Out Gurus: Hello Arlington. I recently had a great dinner at The Helmand on Charles St. in Baltimore. It's an Afghan restaurant with tremendous food and a very cool atmosphere. I'd go there again in a second. But you probably need to make reservations. - Joe

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Washington, D.C.: Hello my little gurus. Quick question: I'm taking a girl friend out for an alternative bachelorette night out. (meaning we don't want to embarrass ourselves wearing veils, playing stupid games, etc.) where is a super hip place to take a handful of ladies out for cocktails? I was thinking Palette, but was wondering since it's on a Thursday if we'd have trouble nabbing one of those little booths by the bar. Any other suggestions?? Thanks!

The Going Out Gurus: Palette is pish-posh. Why don't you call and ask the manager if you could reserve the area closer to the door, if not one of the larger tables? Explain it's a special event. S/he might be willing, especially if you coordinate with some of their high-end nibbles.

If not, consider three other spots: the Venetian Room at the Hotel Lombardy (new spring menu from their cute chef); Southern living at theMorrison-Clark Inn on L Street or cozy, jazzy (in a good way) nook at the Henley Park Hotel. These three spots are upscale, elegant alternatives to the in-your-face richesse of Palette or even Helix, Topaz, etc. -- Kate

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Buttons: I used to remember these little shops around that just sold buttons so you could find just the one you were looking for. Are there any Button Stores left? Where else to get them?

Thanks

The Going Out Gurus: I don't know of any button stores per se, but I'm pretty sure you can find what you're looking for at G Street Fabrics.

-- Janet

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Alexandria, Va.: I hope the readers don't mind that I have a beer question...Fritz, where in DC can I find Dogfish on tap?

The Going Out Gurus: The Reef has the Brown on at the moment, R.F.D. usually has two taps devoted to the award-winning Delaware brewery, and I've seen the 90 min. IPA and other assorted brews at Kramerbooks and the Big Hunt in the past.

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Discount tickets: I think Arlington is referring to DCPlay.

The Going Out Gurus: D.C. Play is a social group, geared toward people under 40, who go to see shows together. Since Arlington was asking specifically about discounts, I didn't think that was what he/she meant. If it was, though, there's info about D.C. Play at the bottom of the TICKETplace listing I mentioned. So either way, all bases are covered. Thanks. -- Jen

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Say it Ain't So!;: I heard Arbor in Adams Morgan is closing for Quizno's. Is it true? I love the wine bar there and don't know where else I would go to enjoy wine and checkers together!;

The Going Out Gurus: Mindy, are you out there? I know you know.

I've not heard about this, but wouldn't been surprised. Have you seen the drech coming to the ground floor of the yellow monstrosity going up on U St. between 14th and 13th (Alero, another Maggie Moo's, some chain sandwich-a-teria). -- Kate

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Shirlington, Va.: Hey, guys! Someone told me that Bungalow Billiards was doing a bus to Gold Cup -- one from Shirlington and one from Chantilly -- but I can't seem to find any info! I called and they seemed, well...not too up on the info. Anyone there know anything or, if not, know of any trips other than Party DC and the alumni thing?

The Going Out Gurus: That's a new one for me, and the person I talked to seemed kind of clueless, so I'll make some calls later and see what I can find out. The D.C. Society of Young Professionals is also taking a few buses down to The Plains, but I like University Row (the alumni event with something like 40 schools participating). Even if you didn't go to one of the "anchor" schools -- and Maryland doesn't have a tent -- it's still a good time with loads of drink specials and catered food. -- Fritz

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Washington, D.C.: Hey GOGs...with the weather (presumably) turning nicer, I'm wondering if there are any motorcycle schools that teach the basics that would allow one to pass a licensing exam. The Motorcycle Safety Foundation courses ALWAYS fill up the first day they are offered in the area at the various community colleges etc... Unfortunately, I was out of town earlier this year when the classes opened up for registration and do not want to wait until the fall to get the ball rolling on getting my motorcycle license! Any chance you guys can help steer me in the right direction?

Thanks,

Wanna-be Marlon Brando (minus 300lbs)

The Going Out Gurus: No problem, Marlon. Have you checked the Web sites for the Maryland and Virginia DMVs? Both list motorcycle training centers in their respective states, as well as other helpful information. You'll find links to the appropriate sites at the very end of this feature, Motorcycle Lessons. If these don't work for you, check with an owner's group like the Baltimore or Fairfax County H.O.G.s. Lynette

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Alexandria, Va.: This is after the fact but I have some information for the person looking for volunteer groups. I personally have really enjoyed volunteering with Single Volunteers. They have a great variety of events and I have met some great people. In addition to DC Cares, there are many volunteer groups in the area: Burgundy Crescent, Capital Action Group, Volunteer Match, Doing Something, Arlington Jaycees, and Alexandria Jaycees.

The Going Out Gurus: Great followup to last week. Thanks for the good words -- and deeds -- Alexandria.

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Dupont, Washington, D.C.: Hi GOG's
Here it is yet another hair salon question. I have an event coming up and what i want is not an up-do as much as a classy wavy look to my straight brown hair. Do salons do this kind of thing? Any suggestions for where to call?

Thanks - yall are the greatest!

The Going Out Gurus: We've heard good things about Fiddleheads.
-- Janet

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Dupont Circle, Washington, D.C.: Help! What was supposed to be a nice Sat. night dinner with my sister and her boyfriend has now turned into 8 adults and 2 children. I was originally thinking Ten Penh, but am now worried that may not be kid friendly (I have no idea how old/well behaved these kids are!). Any suggestions, preferably around Downtown/Penn Quarter. Thanks!

The Going Out Gurus: Dupont, knowing the children's age might help, but you're right about Ten Penh. It's not somewhere I'd take young kids. Instead, somewhere a bit more casual like Matchbox or the Austin Grill or even Zaytinya that has enough bustle to drown out childish din. -- Alexa

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Dupont, Washington, D.C.: Does anybody know if 17th Street Grille's outdoor patio is closed for good? I loved their $2 Corona happy hour!

The Going Out Gurus: Yep. The patio was sacrificed to make room for the hotel's extension. Sorry. It was a great combination of cheap beer and outdoor fun. -- Fritz

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RE: Annapolis: Try Harry Browne's on State Circle - near the State House - 410-263-4332. I went to a wedding catered by them, and the tenderloin and the crab cakes were FABULOUS. No, I don't work for them. Nice atmosphere, too.

The Going Out Gurus: For the person seeking a good restaurant in Annapolis.

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Cocktails in Old Town: Know I'm too late for this week's chat (I hate when work gets in my way of keeping up with the chat!;), but I wanted to chime in with a suggestion for good cocktails in Old Town. I have good luck with Stardust. It's not on the beaten path -- more North Old Town on Montgomery St. -- but the bar is cozy and they have some tasty drinks at neighborly prices.

The Going Out Gurus: Yes, I agree. But it's always incredibly smoky in there. -- Alexa

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Washington, D.C.: I have submitted questions 3xs now and they've never been answered! Realize its too late now. . . but its frustrating! I was hoping for help finding the music venue somewhere off the Red Line that hosts afternoon teas, a Friday night music series, and is currently building a larger concert call. Maybe you can answer next week?

The Going Out Gurus: I think you mean Strathmore Hall on Rockville Pike. Looks like their schedule should keep you plenty busy. Have fun. -- Maura

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Former Annapolis Resident: For the person looking for Annapolis restaurants I would suggest Chart House. It's a local fav with acoustical music late evening, and if it's cool enough fireplace in the lounge. It's not intimate, but the view is spectacular thru large windows. Also try Ruth's Chris (dependable) or Lewnis' (also steak house). YinYankee is Asian Fusion-good and you can walk around afterward. Tsunami is the current hip place. Piccolo (Italian) I've heard is too pricey for it's own good. -Good Luck!;

The Going Out Gurus: More Annapolis suggestions. I wouldn't choose Chart House, though.
-- Janet

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Washington D to the C: Arbor wine bar is closed. Sniff Sniff. Where can a wine drinkin', game playin', nook lovin' girl go for a bottle of wine... or 4?

The Going Out Gurus: Head out to Alexandria (I know, I know) and hit the Majestic Lounge, which has Trivial Pursuit, checkers, Connect Four and other games in its cozy-yet-funky rear lounge. It's coupled with the excellent Evening Star Cafe, so you can enjoy the fruits of that restaurant's long wine list. -- Fritz

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Washington, D.C.: For the Thermal Straightener - PLEASE do your research and gets lots of info. I have a friend (seriously, my friend, not me) who went to a very respectable salon and well - her hair fell out. A year later it's a nice short, curly do - think Felicity - but she's still a bit shell shocked by what happened.

The Going Out Gurus: A word to the wary about thermal straightening. Good advice.

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Silver Spring, Md.: Hello, all-knowing Gurus. I hope you can help with my dilemma. I am looking for a dress/dressy outfit to wear to my cousin's (fancy) wedding over Memorial Day weekend. Having a TJ Max budget, but looking for something really stylish and fits well. It doesn't necessary need to be designer. I have a smallish frame, but I am not short. I really appreciate any help you can give me!; Thanks!;!;

The Going Out Gurus: I think you're in luck in the dress department because there are lots of choices out there. Betsy Fisher is a good bet in downtown D.C. Not cheap, but there is choice.
-- Janet

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Rockville, Md.: Hi guys,

Wondering if you guys have any recommendation for happy hour around Silver Spring, MD area for Friday. Going to a concert that evening, but want to hit happy hours first to get some much needed food and alcohol. Thanks so much.

The Going Out Gurus: I'd send you over to the Quarry House Tavern, an unpretentious, no-nonsense hole-in-the-wall neighborhood bar with huge burgers, draft beer and a jukebox that steers towards classic rock and classic country. Other options include the reliable Austin Grill and Izora's African food and drink. -- Fritz

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Rockvegas, Md.: Please help me not to embarrass myself and stiff the nice people at the club...

My too-kind boyfriend gave me a gift certificate for a massage and facial that I will be cashing in tomorrow. As I have never had either before, I have no idea what the appropriate tip would be.

Thanks so much - your advice has saved me before, so I'm counting on y'all!;

The Going Out Gurus: Don't know if it's your case, but with a gift certificate, the tip is usually included. So, find out before you go.

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Washington, D.C.: Hi Gurus,

I was wondering if you could tell me anything about community gardens in the Adams Morgan, Woodley Park, or Dupont Circle area. I'd really like to sign up for the spring and summer, but I don't know where to begin. Any info you can give would be great.

Thanks!

Anxious Green Thumb

The Going Out Gurus: Gardening is all about patience, right? There are about 30 community gardens around the city, and most of them have waiting lists. I waited about two years to get my plot, but I bet if you make friends with some gardeners, they'd be happy to sublet part of a plot to you. At the very least, they'd welcome your weeding assistance. Near you, check the garden at Walter Pierce Park in Adams Morgan (off 16th Street). Call Garden Resources of Washington (GROW) for more options, 202-234-0591. -- Anne

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Bridesmaids luncheon : This was about 8 years ago, so the prices might have gone up, but we threw a terrific bridesmaids luncheon during high tea at the Ritz-Carlton. I am sure other high-end hotels have this too. We just made a reservation, ordered the prefixe "tea" menu, and someone else served and cleaned up. What could be easier?

The Going Out Gurus: I wondered about that as an idea, but I think the full tea is quite expensive, even more so if it includes champagne. Around $35, I think. At the Ritz Pentagon City, tea is served in the very same "drawing room" where Linda Tripp taped Monica -- for added thrills. -- Alexa

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Gaithersburg, Md.: Hey GOGs!; My boyfriend and I are always looking for places that serve breakfast until the afternoon, or that serve brunch. But nothing too expensive and not somewhere like Tastee Diner. Anywhere between Germantown and Bethesda is good. Thanks so much.

The Going Out Gurus: I'm sure there are tons of places. Off the top of my head, I know Cafe Deluxe in Bethesda does Sunday brunch well into the afternoon. So does Austin Grill, just a couple of doors down. Addie's in Rockville might also have brunch options, though I'm not 100 percent sure. Anyone have other recommendations? -- Jen

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Book Lover: My apartment is starting to overflow with books. Any places in DC where I could sell these for a little extra cash?

The Going Out Gurus: Yes, but the secondhand book business is a toughie. If your books are in absolutely first-rate condition (no folded pages, no split spines, no name written in, etc.) you might call Second Story or one of these other used bookstores. Otherwise, as my accountant (Maura) suggests, take the tax deduction and donate them. -- Kate

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New York, NY: What do you all think of a smoking ban in bars/restaurants in DC? I thought it was weird when it first took effect in New York, but now when I come home to visit, I prefer not going out to certain bars/restaurants because I've gotten used to the smoke free ones here. Not to mention the poor workers who are exposed to all the second hand smoke. Just curious as to your opinions.

The Going Out Gurus: Hello NY, this is Joe. Just took a quick survey of everyone here and we have 8 in favor of a smoking ban (me, Alexa, Kate, Rhome, Jen, Janet, Anne, Maura) and one opposed (Fritz). As someone who goes out to see music in clubs two or three nights a week, I would be thrilled if a ban was in place. It's a drag to have to shower before going to bed just to get rid of the smoke smell.

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Alexandria, Va.: So Boss just told me we are closed tomorrow. As I now have a totally unscheduled day ahead of me, is there anything I should look into? Museum exhibits, etc.

The Going Out Gurus: Alexandria, if you're up for museums, think big and bold: "Courtly Art of the Ancient Maya" at the National Gallery and "Return of the Buddha" at the Sackler are both stunning. Enjoy your sunny day off while you can. -- Maura

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Not that I don't love you guys but...: Do you know where the TV chat went? I'm very sad...

The Going Out Gurus: Don't worry, we miss Lisa too. Her chat will be back in two weeks, I believe.

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Cleveland Park, Washington, D.C.: What is the best place to take golf lessons, especially beginner classes, if you aren't a country club member? I don't need to be good, just good enough to embarrass myself in a respectable way. Also, any tips on used/cheap clubs? Thanks guys.

The Going Out Gurus: Hi Cleveland Park, many courses have professional golfers on hand to help you with your game (do ask about prices first). You might also check out Club Golf in Gaithersburg which is a gym and golf training facility. Also, if you can wait until Wednesday, The Washington Post is coming out with a complete guide of area golf courses which will include information on where to get lessons and equipment. We will, of course, have it posted prominently for you. Thanks, Lynette

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Arlington, Va.: Hey Gurus.
Throwing an Apprentice party tonight. Can you tell me if the Italian Store sells whole pies? I've heard the pizza is the best in the area......you agree?

The Going Out Gurus: Yes, it does. But no, I don't agree. If I told you what pizza I think's the best, you'd laugh me out of Dodge, because it's frozen and it comes from Trader Joe's. If you add a few slices of proscuitto, a handful of arugula and a glug of olive oil it is Italy on a plate. And that's hard to beat for $3.49. -- Alexa

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Sterling, Va.: Gurus, people are always talking about the new trendy/entertainment districts in DC (e.g. Penn Quarter, Mt. Vernon area), but I've yet to see any areas talking off in the manner of a G'town or Adams Morgan. Am I missing out on a happening area in DC? Somewhere where I can, say, get a nice meal, go to a laid back (non corporate) coffe house, and enjoy the city-life. Any ideas? Thanks.

The Going Out Gurus: Penn Quarter is finally starting to live up to the hype. Everything east of there is about to blow up. Downtown is finally on the come up too. It's really about time. You can't front on Capitol Hill either. It's got a pretty high restaurant/bar to residential ratio. Silver Spring is inching up there but still a couple of years off from being a contender. Clarendon is pretty close, and has the old funky neighborhood spots as well as big chains. Chatters? - Rhome

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Re: Chadwicks: The chicken is decent, if you can handle the ham and crab...a strange concoction!;

The Going Out Gurus: Everything but the kitchen sink in that dish.

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Old Town Alexandria, Va.: Best rooftop bars/restaurants in DC? Best patios?

The Going Out Gurus: Wow. Y'all can't wait for spring, can you? Rest assured that we'll have our seasonal packages up once the weather gets a bit more predictable. On that note, we like Perry's for dining, the Reef, Five, Eighteenth Street Lounge, Local 16 and Madam's Organ for drinks. (Lauriol Plaza is overrated and waiting in line for 45 min. to an hour to get a seat on the roof is grating.) -- Fritz and Alexa.

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Washington, D.C.: Hi Gurus,

I live in Glover Park and am a total sucker for anyplace that lets me drink outside. Big fan of the patio at Bourbon...was wondering if anyone actually goes to the "Deck" bar at the Savoy hotel? Or is this one of those skeezy SNL-skit-style hotel bars?

Thanks!

The Going Out Gurus: I went by a few times last summer and it always seemed dead, dead, dead. Even at 6 on a Friday. I've no idea what's going on. Decent place, if an odd location. -- Fritz

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Bridesmaid luncheon : Signatures on Penn has a lounge with counches and armchairs- it is sectioned off from the bar and restaurant area but they still have wait service. We have happy hour there all the time but you can definitely reserve it. They have great sushi and a delicious and cheap "nosh" menu, too.

The Going Out Gurus: Here come some suggestions for our bride...

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White Legs, Va.: It's spring. I'm white. I want to wear shorts. Looks like a job for mystic tan.

Where are some good places to get sprayed? Cheap is good.

The Going Out Gurus: EuroBronze offers Mystic Tan for $25. There's also a place called At the Beach; they have several locations in Maryland.

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Arlington, Va.: Oh great and mighty gurus, if I may be so bold as to request your assistance. Going to the Cherry Blossom Festival this weekend reminded my husband and I about item number 7 in our five-year plan: learning Japanese. Any places were we can learn conversational Japanese inexpensively? There is no hurry as a trip to Tokyo is still but a dream, so no crash courses are necessary.

The Going Out Gurus: I hope this also answers the general question from the person about learning more about Japanese culture. The Japan-America Society (the group that put on last weekend's Sakura Matsuri Street Festival as part of the Cherry Blossom Festival) has language classes and hosts other programs, too. And the Japan Information and Culture Center (part of the Embassy of Japan) has what looks like a jackpot -- 17 places in the area where you can study Japanese. -- Anne

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Dewey Beach, Del.: I am new to D.C. and my friends, who have all lived here a while, are pressuring me to join a beach house in Dewey Beach. I have several groups to choose from, but I have never been there and I don't know what to look for, or what questions to ask. Do a lot of people go to this beach on the weekends? Is it worth the money? Is it nice? Any input from your readers would be great.

The Going Out Gurus: First of all, don't feel obligated to join the beach house because of peer pressure. As we all learned from countless Afterschool Specials, peer pressure is just wrong. Having said that, Dewey Beach is a fun place to spend a summer. It draws large crowds during those months, mostly college-age and early 20s. I think Rehoboth and Bethany are a little nicer, but that's mainly because I'm creeping toward becoming an old crank who likes her peace and quiet. If you want to stay somewhere where there are lots of young people and places to party, Dewey's a good bet. I would recommend that you do some research before you agree on which house to join -- ask your friends if the renters have Web sites with photos of the places. That should give you some sense as to which ones are decent and which are dumps. -- Jen

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Chinatown, Washington, D.C.: What's up, g's? I hope you can help me out. I'm looking for a Friday happy hour spot for a group of my co-workers and I in the Chinatown area. We're a pretty polarized group when it comes to our tastes in bars, half being more of the hotel lounge type and the other half being more of the Irish pub/brewery type. Any suggestions to help us find common ground? Thanks.

The Going Out Gurus: There's not a lot, save the Dubliner inside the Phoenix Park Hotel that fits your hotel lounge-Irish pub Venn diagram. As I'm not a fan of the latter, I'd ignore their wants and make myself comfortable at a hotel like Corduroy. All the reg. bars in your hood, get so crowded: Zola, Stoney's, District Chop House, etc. Would your gang combine food and drink at Ella's or Matchbox?

If you're game for an adventure, take the group to the Morrison-Clark Inn or the WP International Bar. -- Kate

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20037, Washington, D.C.: For the woman looking for a less-expensive dress, sometimes I've had luck at the Mustard Seed in Bethesda.
For the questions about the Capital View chocoholics car, it is FABULOUS. A friend and I went to celebrate an occasion, and had to roll ourselves out of there. We know chocolate, and that was the stuff!

The Going Out Gurus: Looking for a good buy on a party dress, here's a suggestion:

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Woodley Park. Washington, D.C.: Hi Gurus--I've heard rumors floated around and even read some mentions in prior chats here about a new lounge of sorts opening up in my 'hood (Woodley Park)...what are the details? I don't want to get too excited, but the prospect of an actual bar being at my doorstep is getting me giddy. Thanks!

The Going Out Gurus: From what I've heard, it's a new lounge/diner hybrid called "The Third Place." Constantine Stavropoulos of Adams Morgan's Tryst and The Diner hopes to have it open within the new few months. I'm also excited to have a bar in the hood, but let's face it: It's going to be packed with tourists, much like Chipotle and Murphy's. -- Fritz

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Trader Joe's: Alexa,
I'm not afraid of Trader Joes. You mind passing along the brand name? Probably go good with 2 Buck Chuck.

The Going Out Gurus: It's the frozen Trader Giotto's plain Three Cheese you want. Cooks up in 8 or 9 minutes. You really should bank on one per person. And don't forget those embellishments. Let me know how they turn out. -- A

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Washington, D.C.: For the poster who wanted a cheap dress for the Memorial Day weekend wedding...I highly recommend checking out Loehmann's and/or Filene's Basement. Had great luck finding a trendy, cheap dress there for a charity thing in February.

The Going Out Gurus: Ditto for me!!
--Janet

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Dogfish: The 9:30 Club serves the King Midas. It is pretty thick and strong though, so be careful.

Why don't you buy a few pitchers at the brewery in Rehoboth to tide you over. They give discounted refills if you bring the jogs back.

The Going Out Gurus: True. Make sure you hit up the Back Bar (downstairs) at 9:30, although they serve the Midas in these itty bitty glasses to, uh, save you from yourself.

Check it on Saturday before Bob Mould and Rich Morel's always kickin' Blowoff DJ night. -- Fritz

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Re: The Deck: The Deck heats up later at night, especially on weekends, and on a nice evening, it's full of preppy Glover Park/Burleith folks, mostly people who can walk there. A tame but fun scene, completely determined by weather. Nice for a big group.

The Going Out Gurus: So I suppose I have to go back?

Thanks. Sounds like fun. -- Fritz

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Arlington, Va.: I am in Washington DC for two more weeks before I return home to Iowa. I was just wondering if you know of any bars or upcoming entertainment that I, as a 21-yr old female, absolutely should not miss. Thank you!;

The Going Out Gurus: Saturday at Five will be hot to death, I can't say it enough. Be there. Have you been to a show at the Black Cat yet? That's mad important. You might want to hit Dream too just to say that you did. There are a bunch of names that are special to D.C. You should seek them out and try so see any that you can before you leave. A short list includes: Pam Bricker (several nights a week at U-Topia), Didier Prossaird (Wed at Bossa), Sam the Man Burns (Sun. at Red), Patrick de Santos (Wed. at Chi-Cha), The Nighthawks... I need a little more input on your tastes and preferences to keep this list relevant. - Rhome

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U Street, Washington, D.C.: Looking for a casual, reasonably priced place for a late (9pm) dinner tonight--U Street/Adams Morgan/Dupont area. Maybe a step up from Ben's? Here's the catch--American food only (picky guest). Any suggestions?

The Going Out Gurus: What about pizza from the new Sette Osteria in Dupont? Open 'til 2 tonight. -- Alexa

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McLean, Va.: Hey Guru's, got a football question of the European nature. Where is the best place in the District to enjoy a pint before a big DC United game? Looking for a place to mingle with some good hearty football fans. Thanks!;

The Going Out Gurus: Capitol Lounge is a venue of choice, but it's far more fun to grab a drink in the Parking Lot with Barra Brava or the Screaming Eagles before the game. They're certainly "good, hearty football fans." -- Fritz

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Re: Tailor for Bridesmaid Dress: I forgot the name of the place but the dry cleaners at the corner of Connecticut and Livingston in Chevy Chase are GREAT! Very reasonable prices and they are very fast.

The Going Out Gurus: I assume you're not talking about Parkway Cleaners. They're excellent but tres cher.

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Alexandria, Va.: Hi Guru!; Please tell me nice vegetarian restaurant in DC, Old Town Alexandria. Also tell me Top 5 Vegeterian restaurant in DC Metro Area. I am not a vegan.
Thanks

The Going Out Gurus: We can do better than that, Alexandria. It's easy because you and other readers have already done all the work. Here's what readers voted as the 10 best vegetarian restaurants in the area. Note that LebTav, Zaytinya, Nora and Thyme Square are not exclusively vegetarian. -- Anne

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Arlington, Va.: You guys are great - I read the chat faithfully every week!; I'm sure this has been asked before, but any recommendations on places in the area to go two-stepping or line dancing?

The Going Out Gurus: Nick's in Alexandria should be #1 on your list, with country dancing almost every night. Remington's draws the gay boot-scooting crowd. -- Fritz

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Washington, D.C.: We're ready for spring! Do you know if the terrace bar at the Hotel Washington is open yet?

The Going Out Gurus: The Sky Terrace -- which offers fabulous views and just-okay drinks at high prices -- opens in May. -- Fritz

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Washington, D.C.: Do you know where I could take a First Aid class and maybe renew my lifeguard training certification?

The Going Out Gurus: The American Red Cross can put you in touch with local chapters that offer courses. You might also check out your local YMCA and see if they do the same. Good luck. -- Maura

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Arlington, Va.: I am looking for a restaurant that is dog friendly (outside seating of course). It would be great to find one that will bring a bowl of water to the outside area, but just tolerating the four-legged friends is ok. Bonus points if it is near a dog park!;

BTW, I am talking about a big dog, not one that can hide on a lap.

The Going Out Gurus: Hey Arlington, Try Sweet Licks on R Street or how about Five Guys on Georgia Ave or in Herndon?

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Sicklerville, NJ: This is kind of a silly question, but what happens if you are in a Singles volunteer club and you find someone to date. Are you still allowed to stay in?

The Going Out Gurus: Good question. I guess as long as you're not married, you're "potentially" single.

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RE: Hubby b-day in Annapolis: After dinner at O'Leary's grab a drink at Galway Bay - great Irish Pub off the beaten path...

The Going Out Gurus: Good choice, although I might prefer the nearby Boatyard Bar and Grill, which is full of sailors and lively music. -- Fritz

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Arlington, Va.: Hi Gurus,
Any suggestions for an activity this weekend that won't require a lot of walking? My family is coming to town and we have one not-so-mobile member. They've been here quite a bit so something new would be great. Thanks!

The Going Out Gurus: Perhaps there's a play or performance they might enjoy? Take a look at our recommended theater events and see if something strikes you. Or have they ever been to Millennium Stage? -- Jen

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Washington, D.C: Can you help a girl out? It's my turn to pick a date for us (me and hubs) to go on. We're both 28, into contemporary art, live music (but not dancing), animals, outdoors activities, bars - both chi-chi and dive, like to do unusual things. Last date: went to the pet expo and then dinner at Galileo. Can you give a recommendation in the dc/nova area for both Saturday day and Saturday night? The time of our date depends on your suggestions.

The Going Out Gurus: You're too funny.
What about the Bhangra Blowout on Saturday night at DAR? This event is awesome and just gets bigger and bigger every year.

You could have a vodka cocktail at Maxim or a balloon of wine and a side of croquettas at Taberna del Alabardero beforehand.

Alternately, what about the Bowie Baysox game, Saturday night. Apparently Strawberry's Bistro is the place to eat, but I can't get over the name. -- Kate

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Washington, D.C.: Hi there, fabulous Gurus...
I'm hoping to picnic on the Mall this weekend (or somewhere near the Cherry Blossom festivities), and my only question is this: Can I pack a bottle of wine, or is alcohol prohibited?
Thanks!

The Going Out Gurus: Alcohol is prohibited, Washington. I'd suggest Orangina.

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Washington, D.C.: What's the name of the new tiki bar on E (I think)? Couldn't find it with the search engine. Thinking of going there for happy hour tomorrow. Do they have any specials? Any other recommendations in that area?

Thanks!

The Going Out Gurus: Are you talking about Tequila Beach? Good Lord. That place -- well, I still haven't really decided what to say about it. $1 beers from 7 to 10 is the special, and it's full of people dancing to Abba and other cheesy dance music on Fridays. (Hip-Hop on Saturdays). The whole place is over-the-top Ocean City style, with sharks hanging from the ceiling and glow-in-the-dark tropical murals. It takes a certain sense of humor to hang out there. -- Fritz

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Bethesda, Md.: For those who were looking for Striptease lessons I'd like to recommend www.divinedanceinstruction.com We hired them for a bachelorette party and it was SO much fun!; A better spend of money than a stripper. Surprise benefit: my boyfriend mentions it every day!; Keeps saying I'm sexy....like I wasn't before? -check it out

The Going Out Gurus: Hi Bethesda, thanks for the tip and the url. And while you're at it, check out this feature on how to Strip Your Way to Fitness. Here's one way to spice up those exercise routines. Lynette

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Fairfax, Va.: I have friends coming in from out of town, all 22/23 year old single guys, and basically just looking for the biggest pick-up spot in the area. Tony and Joe's has been a favorite, but the weather hasn't been good for the outdoor scene, and we've been to McFaddens too much recently. What do you reccomend?

The Going Out Gurus: Lulu's, Lucky Bar, Crush or Mille and Al's should fit the bill. If you want to go smaller, try the Angry Inch Saloon. -- Fritz

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Washington, D.C.: Hi GOG, my friends are visiting from Moscow and are looking for a pool hall that has Russian Billiard tables. From what I gather the tables are much bigger/longer/wider? Any ideas for where I can find a place that has such tables? Willing to go NoVa, DC, Baltimore if necessary.

The Going Out Gurus: Don't know of any, sorry. (Russian Billiards have larger balls and pockets, which makes it easier to shoot vodka and play 8-Ball at the same time, I guess.)

Anyone seen a Russian Billiards table? I'm going to guess that someone will say they've seen one at Buffalo Billiards. -- Fritz

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HotelBarLover: Have been doing the hotel bar tour of DC and having a blast. My fave so far - Le Bar. Next on my list are Degrees, Corduroy . . . any thoughts on what's great?

The Going Out Gurus: My suggestion would be to get off the beaten boutique path and hit some of the small treasures like the Library Lounge at the St. Regis, Bistro Bis at Hotel George or Off The Record in the Hay-Adams. They draw an older, richer clientele than, say, Le Bar or Poste, but I think I enjoy the contemplative nature of a great bartender and top-shelf drinks.

Degrees and Corduroy are two of the best hotel bars in D.C., though, esp. if you can get to Corduroy's daily happy hour with $3 beers and $4 appetizers. Almost every drink at Degrees is worth having again. If Michael is your bartender, tell him what you like and let him go to work. -- Fritz

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In a rut: Please help!; I need to pick a restaurant for a birthday dinner. It needs to be near a metro in DC, and not too expensive. The other requirement is that it's "something different." It doesn't necessarily have to be exotic, just something other than the standard burgers or Americanized Chinese. I was considering Bistro Med, Cafe Luna or the Astor International Cuisine. Any other suggestions? Thanks great gurus!;

The Going Out Gurus: Of those, definitely Bistro Med. You know it's in Georgetown, right, probably 20 minutes walk from any Metro? Astor International is not a birthday dinner destination. No, no. I admit I once upon a time used Cafe Luna for quasi-event dinners, but that prime has passed. There's nothing exotic about except the stories you'll hear at the next table. If you want Middle Eastern food and can go up in price, I'd go all out with Lebanese Taverna. -- Anne

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College Park, Md.: Any romantic type places that you recommend for a couple on a budget in the Adams Morgan area?

The Going Out Gurus: Paela for two at Churreria Madrid, crepes at Chez Antoine or small plates to share on a couch at Chi-Cha Lounge, is the best I can offer.

If you're willing to be early birds, Petits Plats has a superb dinner special. From 5:30-7 (order must be in the kitchen by 7, so arguably you could go at 6:45), three courses for 22.95 per person: soup, salad or pate followed by choices like beef bourguignon and roast fish, and a dessert (sorbet, creme caramel, floating island). If you're interested call and reserve. -- Kate

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M Street, Washington, D.C.: The buttons question reminded me that I have a button issue that you might be able to address. I got a vintage Burberry coat a few weekends ago for a steal, but it's missing a few buttons. Can I just go to the Burberry Store and ask for replacements or are they going to laugh in my face at my old coat?

The Going Out Gurus: What about E-Bay?

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Arlington, Va.: This is a follow-up to my question of going to the Improv last Friday night. I just wanted to thank you guys for the suggestions although my date and I got there 40 minutes late - we got very lucky and got two non-smoking seats on the side of the stage a few feet away. We went to Mackey's afterwards and that was a good place to go, plenty of room to walk around and a nice variety of food (couldn't have meet on Friday because of lent and they had a salmon sandwich that was really good). Thanks again, Gurus.

The Going Out Gurus: Glad it all worked out. Isn't the Improv great?

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Weekly Nightlife Problem: As written in the Weekly Nightlife Agenda:
"Thursday, April 8
You may have met Nick Valencia in his role as Saki's personable event coordinator and chief schmoozer, but he also dabbles behind the decks. Shindig, his weekly DJ event with partner Kris K. at Dragonfly, promises a mash-up of house, disco, hip-hop, punk, funk, 2-step and more. Platters get to spinning on the minimalist club's second floor around 10. There's no cover and no dress code."

The information here is not entirely correct, and I find fault with this being that your column is a "free" advertisement of sorts. Shindig is not only Nick and Kris' weekly event, but also EMCDC's (Mike Haddad and Alex Haje). The two groups alternate weeks with dj-ing, and EMCDC controls all promotions. In fact, this week, Alex Haje (EMCDC, Spank) and Fred Maslaki (Yoshitshi, EMCDC) are playing. I'm sorry if I seem to be the offensive, but please give credit to all. Just as the article was written by both Fritz and Rhome, how would one feel if the byline only read one of their names?

The Going Out Gurus: We don't consider our column to be a "free ad," but more an endorsement of DJs, bands and events that we feel are worth seeing. We actually go to most of these events ourselves (or as many as time permits).

In this case, we were simply calling attention to Nick and Kris. Rhome met Nick at Saki and likes his style. We're sorry if you feel left out, but Rhome wrote it with the intention of telling people about what was going on this Thursday at Dragonfly, not every week. Honestly, we usually don't list the names of promoters over the DJs or featured acts.

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The Going Out Gurus: That's the last question for today. Sorry we ran out of time. Have a great weekend everyone.

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