Fort Belvoir officials invite the public to attend "Twilight Tattoo," a colorful military pageant, at 6:30 p.m. today at P-2 Field on U.S. Route 1.
The pageant is a tradition that blends the precision and discipline of the 3rd U.S. Infantry (The Old Guard) with the orchestral sounds of the U.S. Army Band (Pershing's Own). The event is free.
The history of Twilight Tattoo stretches over three centuries and across the Atlantic Ocean, said a Fort Belvoir spokesman. British troops were summoned back to their barracks from local pubs by a bugle and drum call that told tavern owners, "Time to turn off the taps." The troops knew the call meant "taps off," and within minutes of hearing it, they were back in their tents.
The modern-day call is known as "tattoo," and during basic training, it signals the time to quiet down and hit the bunks.
Members of the public without Defense Department decals on their cars must enter the post through Woodlawn Gate. Signs will be posted directing drivers to the Twilight Tattoo parking area. Attendees are urged to bring lawn chairs, cushions and blankets. Picnic baskets are also welcome.
Strictly Painting 5, a McLean Project for the Arts biennial juried exhibition, opens today and closes July 30. The show features area artists working with paint or paint in combination with other materials.
The exhibition is curated by Jonathan P. Binstock, curator of contemporary art at the Corcoran Gallery of Art. There will be an opening reception and jurors' remarks at 7 p.m. next Thursday.
Also on exhibit in the Ramp Gallery is the Corcoran Student Art Show.
The McLean Project for the Arts is on the second floor of the McLean Community Center, 1234 Ingleside Ave. Gallery hours are 10 a.m.-4 p.m. Tuesday-Friday and 1-5 p.m. Saturdays. For more information, call 703-790-1953 or visit www.mpaart.org.
Choralis, a choral group based in Falls Church, will sing Bach's Magnificat and Mozart's Requiem with an orchestra and guest soloists at 8 p.m. June 24 at the Falls Church, 115 E. Fairfax St. Tickets are $30, $25 and $20. For more information, call 703-237-2499 or visit www.choralis.org.
-- Compiled by STEPHEN C. FEHR