A Visit to the Islands

The annual D.C. Caribbean Carnival kicks off Saturday at 10 with a parade starting at Georgia and Missouri avenues NW. Thousands of colorfully costumed masqueraders, dance troupes and bands will travel to Banneker Park, at Georgia Avenue and Barry Place NW, where a festival with live entertainment, crafts displays and food vendors will be open Saturday and Sunday from noon to 7. Watching the parade is free; park admission is $5, younger than age 12 free. Call 202-726-2204 or visit www.dccaribbeancarnival.com.

Barbecue on the Avenue

Cooking teams from across the United States will compete in the 13th annual National Capital Barbecue Battle Saturday from 11 to 10 and Sunday from 11 to 7:30 along Pennsylvania Avenue NW between Ninth and 14th streets. Chuck Brown, Ken Navarro, C.J. Chenier & the Red Hot Louisiana Band, Mem Shannon, Maria Muldaur and the Holmes Brothers headline entertainment on three stages. There will also be demonstrations by celebrity chefs, exhibits, children's activities and food vendors. The event benefits the Metropolitan Police Boys and Girls Clubs. Admission at the gate is $10, ages 6 to 12 $5, younger free. Call 202-828-3099 or visit www.bbqusa.us.

A Present From The Post

"Rock Night" is the theme at the second free Weekend's Weekends concert, sponsored by The Washington Post, Friday at 7:30 in Rock Creek Park at Carter Barron Amphitheatre, 16th Street and Colorado Avenue NW. The featured bands are Kenin, Niki Barr and Rotoglow. Free tickets will be released Friday starting at 8:30 a.m. at The Post, 1150 15th St. NW, and at noon at the Carter Barron box office. The season's final Weekend's Weekends show is "Big Band/Small Band Swing Night" on July 8. Call 202-334-4748. See Nightwatch on Page 5.

Broadway Tunes and More

* Signature Theatre celebrates classic show tunes with "Signature Sings Broadway," an original musical revue, Friday at 6:30 and Saturday at 1 and 6:30 at Welburn Square, in the 4200 block of North Fairfax Drive in Arlington, next to the Ballston Metro. No tickets are needed. Call 703-228-1850 or 703-228-6966.

* Leonard Slatkin conducts the National Symphony Orchestra and the Choral Arts Society of Washington in an "American Originals" concert Friday at 8:15 in the Filene Center at Wolf Trap Park, 1551 Trap Rd., Vienna. Leonard Bernstein's "Symphonic Dances" from "West Side Story" and Overture to "Candide," George Gershwin's "Porgy & Bess" and Samuel Barber's "Adagio" are featured. Seats inside cost $28 to $38; a lawn ticket is $18. To order, call Tickets.com, 703-218-6500; for information, call 703-255-1860.

Sounds of Summer

* Lisa Moscatiello & the Space Dots give a free concert Saturday at 8 at Lubber Run Amphitheatre, at North Columbus and North Second streets in Arlington. Call 703-228-1850 or 703-228-6966.

* Children's troubadours Cathy Fink & Marcy Marxer kick off a free weekly outdoor concert series Sunday at 3 at McLean Central Park, adjacent to the McLean Community Center, 1234 Ingleside Ave., McLean. Shows continue Sundays through July. Call 703-790-0123.

* '70s superstar Grand Funk Railroad opens the Loudoun Summer Music Fest series Sunday at 6:15 at Belmont Country Club, 19661 Belmont Manor Lane in Ashburn. Gates open at 5. Weekly outdoor concerts by national rock, blues and country acts continue through August. Next up: Delbert McClinton, July 3; the Wailers, July 10. Tickets cost $12 in advance, $15 at the gate, ages 12 and younger free. Call 703-728-9500 or visit www.liveatbelmont.com.

New on Stage

* Joe Sears and Jaston Williams portray the town's men, women and children -- all of them -- as mythical little Tuna, Tex., celebrates the Fourth of July in "Red, White and Tuna," through July 10 in the Kennedy Center Eisenhower Theater (Metro: Foggy Bottom-GWU, with free shuttles). Tickets cost $20 to $55. Call

202-467-4600 (TDD: 202-416-8524).

* Theater J opens two one-act comedies by Woody Allen, "Central Park West" and "Riverside Drive," with "pay-what-you-can" previews Saturday at 8 and Sunday at 3 and 7:30 at the D.C. Jewish Community Center, 1529 16th St. NW. The bargain seats go on sale at the box office an hour before each show. The run continues through July 24; regular prices are $25 to $36. To order, call BoxOffice Tickets, 800-494-8497; for information, call 202-777-3229.

* The Summer Shakespeare troupe is staging free performances of Shakespeare's "A Midsummer Night's Dream" from Wednesday through July 3 at 8 in the new outdoor amphitheatre at the Olney Theatre Center, 2001 Olney-Sandy Spring Rd. in Olney. The cast combines National Players alumni and Boston University students. Reservations are recommended. Call 301-924-3400.

Real Life, Real People

The Smithsonian Folklife Festival, the Smithsonian Institution's 39th annual celebration of folk culture around the world, continues daily through Monday and Thursday through July 4 on the Mall between Seventh and 14th streets, with entertainment, talks, crafts demonstrations, exhibits and specialty food vendors. Admission is free. The major themes this year are "Oman: Desert, Oasis and Sea," "Forest Service, Culture and Community," "Nuestra Musica: Music in Latino Culture" and "Food Culture U.S.A." Most activities are open daily from 11 to 5:30 and are followed most evenings by dance parties and concerts. A highlight is the Ralph Rinzler Memorial Concert July 1 at 5:30, honoring the late festival director and featuring the Comanche Hymn Singers and other Native American performers. For a recorded schedule of events, call 202-633-9884. For general information, call 202-633-1000 (TDD: 202-357-1729) or visit www.folklife.si.edu. See story on Page 24.

-- Compiled by Barry Barriere

GLEN ECHO PARK, at 7300 MacArthur Blvd., Glen Echo, is hosting a free family festival Saturday from noon to 6 with entertainment, children's rides and games, tours and exhibits focusing on the history of the park, founded in 1891. A highlight is swing dancing in the Spanish Ballroom to music by the Tommy Dorsey Orchestra recorded there live in 1954. Admission is free. Call 301-634-2222 or visit www.glenechopark.org.A sweet grass basket by Lavinia Nelson is on display at the Smithsonian Folklife Festival.