The John F. Kennedy Center for the Performing Arts, at 2700 F St. NW, is hosting its 21st annual free Open House Arts Festival Saturday from 11:30 to 7:30 on multiple indoor and outdoor stages. The day begins at 11:30 on the main plaza with a parade featuring a marching band, Chinese lion dancers and stilt walkers.

Other highlights among more than 30 free performances include concerts by the National Symphony Orchestra, the Washington National Opera and the Harlem Gospel Choir; dance by the Suzanne Farrell Ballet and the Yellow Bird Indian Dancers; and pop, jazz and folk music by Last Train Home, Rumba Club, the Satin Doll Trio and Del Castillo.

In addition, strolling performers will roam the center, the Washington Chalk Festival will encourage aspiring artists and the NSO will corral a musical instrument "petting zoo."

Free tickets for shows in the Terrace Theater, Theater Lab and Jazz Club will be released in front of those theaters 30 minutes before they start. All halls are accessible to people with disabilities.

Parking at the center and surrounding streets will be tight, but the Foggy Bottom-GWU Metro station is just three blocks away, and free shuttle buses will operate all day. For information, call 202-467-4600 (TDD: 202-416-8524) or visit

Here's the lineup:

CONCERT HALL -- National Symphony Orchestra, conducted by Emil de Cou in music by Sousa, Tchaikovsky and Copland, at 12:15; U.S. Army Band's Ceremonial Band, 1:45; Doc Scantlin & His Imperial Palms Orchestra, 3:15; Harlem Gospel Choir, 4:45.

MILLENNIUM STAGE NORTH -- Yellow Bird Indian Dancers, 12:15; the Suzanne Farrell Ballet, 1:45; Oktbrwrld, 3:15; Rumba Club, 4:45.

MILLENNIUM STAGE SOUTH -- The David Liebman Group, 1; Washington National Opera, in excerpts from "I Vespri Siciliani," 2:30; Neo Camerata, 4; the Doug McKelway Band, 5:30.

NORTH PLAZA -- Mezzo-soprano Barbara Hollinshead and lutenist Howard Bass, 1; Washington Improv Theatre, 2:15; Choregraphie Antique, Elizabethan court dancing, 3:30; Renaissance swordplay demonstration from fight choreographer Brad Waller, 4:45.

SOUTH PLAZA -- Last Train Home, 1; the Crowtations, 2:30; Casper Lomayesva & the 602 Band, 4; Del Castillo, 6.

KC JAZZ CLUB -- Sean Grissom, 12:45; scenes from "The Mikado" by the Washington Savoyards, 2:15; Natalie Douglas, 3:45; the Satin Doll Trio, 5:15.

THEATER LAB -- Gary Krinsky's "Toying With Science," 12:15; Choral Arts Society of Washington, 2; Cochise Anderson, 3:30.

TERRACE THEATER -- NSO Youth Fellows, 12:15; NSO Chamber Ensemble, 1:45; NSO "Kinderkonzerts" for children, 3:15 and 4:45.

ATRIUM -- Wong Chinese Dancers, 1:15; Brad Waller's Renaissance swordplay, 2:30; Sean Grissom, 4; Washington Improv Theater, 5.