Washington area events celebrating Women's History Month

The jacket of Pat Nixon's inaugural gown is featured in a new part of the National Museum of American History's exhibit on first ladies.
The jacket of Pat Nixon's inaugural gown is featured in a new part of the National Museum of American History's exhibit on first ladies. (Hugh Talman)
Friday, March 5, 2010

March is Women's History Month, and from movie screenings to art exhibits, music to family-friendly events, there are numerous fun ways to celebrate women's contributions to society.

-- Amy Orndorff


FAMILY DAY: WOMEN'S HISTORY MONTH 11:30 a.m. to 3 p.m. Families can learn about women's contributions in art and music through gallery tours, stamp collecting, a scavenger hunt, dress-up, crafts and a performance by the Duncan Dancers. Smithsonian American Art Museum, Kogod Courtyard, Eighth and F streets NW. 202-633-1000. http://www.americanart.si.edu. Free.

WOMEN'S CHORAL FESTIVAL OF WASHINGTON 7:30 p.m. Washington Women's Chorus, the University of Maryland Women's Chorus and women's choruses from Elizabeth Seton and Bethesda-Chevy Chase high schools perform "Seasons of Love" by Eleanor Daley. The program will also include each chorus performing works by female composers. University of Maryland Memorial Chapel, Regents and Chapel drives, College Park. 202-244-7367. http://www.washingtonwomenschorus.org. Free, donations accepted.


"CELEBRATING WOMEN IN ART AND DESIGN" AND "6 ABSTRACT WOMEN" RECEPTION 2 to 4 p.m. The Workhouse Arts Center has two new exhibits as part of "Minds Wide Open," a Virginia-wide celebration of female artists. The first, "6 Abstract Women Exhibition," highlights works by abstract artists Andrea Cybyk, Marcia Dale Dullum, Michele Hoben, Joyce McCarten, Jan Sherfy and Roberta Thole and will be on display through March 28. The other exhibit, "Celebrating Women IN Art and Design," shows off work by Workhouse Associate artist Kathleen Kendall and interior designer June Shea and will be on display through March 17. Both exhibits will have an opening reception Sunday. Workhouse Arts Center, 9601 Ox Rd., Lorton. 703-495-0001. http://www.workhousearts.org. Free.


INTERNATIONAL WOMEN'S DAY 7 p.m. Move over Kathryn Bigelow, 7-year-old director Emily Salva is going to give you a run for your money. Salva created the animated short "Odysseus and the Cyclops," which screens Monday as part of the Washington DC Independent Film Festival. Also on Monday's bill are other films by or about women: "Postcard to Owen Sound," "Quest for Honor," "Sonabai: Another Way of Seeing" and "The Spirit of a Runner." U.S. Navy Memorial Heritage Center, Burke Theater, 701 Pennsylvania Ave. NW. 202-333-6615. http://www.dciff.org. $10, $7 seniors and students.

WOMEN OF ARCHITECTURE 6:30 p.m. This year the annual women of architecture lecture features accomplished architect Toshiko Mori discussing her work, which includes a visitor center at Frank Lloyd Wright's Darwin D. Martin House in Buffalo. There will also be a screening of the 15-minute documentary "A Girl Is a Fellow Here -- 100 Women Architects in the Studio of Frank Lloyd Wright." The documentary tells the story of Wright's support for female architects when women were still finding a place in the field. National Building Museum, 401 F St. NW. 202-272-2448. http://www.nbm.org. $20, $12 students. Reservations required.


FIRST LADIES AT THE SMITHSONIAN EXPANSION: A FIRST LADY'S DEBUT No one cares what kind of suit the president wears -- when it comes to fashion, we look to the first lady. We understand what makes "The First Ladies at the Smithsonian" exhibition so popular: It's the gorgeous gowns, glittering jewelry and to-die-for shoes. Beginning Wednesday, the exhibit is expanding to include media coverage about their debut at their husbands' inaugurations and watercolor sketches of some of the gowns in the collection. National Museum of American History, 14th Street and Constitution Avenue NW. 202-633-1000. http://www.americanhistory.si.edu. Free.

LUNAFEST 7 p.m. The traveling, women-oriented film festival stops at the Arlington Cinema 'N' Drafthouse to raise money for the Breast Cancer Fund and Postpartum Support Virginia. There are 10 movies (many are short!) in the screening, and the featured movie is "Monday Before Thanksgiving," actress Courteney Cox's directorial debut. 2903 Columbia Pike, Arlington. 703-486-2345. http://www.lunafest.org. $15 in advance, $20 at the door.


MINDS WIDE OPEN REGIONAL LAUNCH EVENT 6 to 9 p.m. "Minds Wide Open" is the first statewide celebration of women in the arts, and the Torpedo Factory Art Center will be the site of the Northern Virginia launch. Marian Van Landingham, Torpedo Factory founder and resident artist, will speak at the event that also celebrates the opening of three exhibits by female artists, "Past Forward," "Peep and Strip Show" and the Art League Gallery's "Herstory." The "Peep and Strip Show" reception will feature two modern dances inspired by the exhibit. Torpedo Factory Art Center, 105 N. Union St., Alexandria. 703-838-4565. http://www.torpedofactory.org. Free.

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