Thursday, Nov. 17
World Cup Trivia at Guinness Open Gate Brewery: The World Cup starts on Sunday, but do you know your Ronaldo from Rivaldo, or the Leopards of Zaire from the Indomitable Lions? Test your knowledge at a special trivia night at the Guinness brewery. Organizers are calling it a “fan party,” so the questions won’t all be soccer related, though scarves and jerseys are encouraged. The maximum team size is eight. 7 to 9 p.m. Free.
Triple Crossing Tap Takeover at Shelter: Richmond remains one of the East Coast’s best beer destinations, and Triple Crossing is one of the key reasons. This mini tap takeover at Shelter, the bar inside the Roost food hall near Potomac Avenue, will make you a believer. The eight beers have something for everyone, from crispies (Hilltop unfiltered kellerbier; Czech pale lager on gravity cask) to hazies (the flagship Clever Girl IPA with Mosaic and Citra hops; the bolder Nectar & Knife double IPA with Simcoe and Mosaic). 4 p.m. Beer prices vary.
Capital Book Fest: For its final event of the year, Capital Book Fest offers thousands of used books — and, for those nostalgic few, used CDs, DVDs and vinyl — for $6 or less. Books are provided by bookstore Carpe Librum, and profits benefit nonprofit Turning the Page, which aids parents of students in improving academic performance. Registration is appreciated but not required for this sale in front of the Ronald Reagan Building and International Trade Center downtown. 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. Free.
International Partnerships Concert at Rachel M. Schlesinger Concert Hall: Here’s a true sign of transatlantic cooperation: The U.S. Air Force Concert Band has invited the Prince of Denmark Air Force Band to perform in the United States for the first time, in honor of Queen Margrethe II of Denmark’s 50 years on the throne and the 75th anniversary of the U.S. Air Force. The concert includes both ensembles performing together at Northern Virginia Community College’s Alexandria campus. 7 p.m. Free.
Friday, Nov. 18
Downtown Holiday Market: For the third consecutive year, the Downtown Holiday Market is taking over two full blocks of F Street instead of the relatively crowded sidewalks in front of the National Portrait Gallery. The spacious footprint was developed for social distancing, but it allows for a much more comfortable experience browsing the 62 booths of vendors selling jewelry, prints, candles, chocolate and other goods, including spaces reserved for local Black-owned and minority-owned businesses. Snack on empanadas, mini-doughnuts and sweets while browsing and listening to a wide variety of musicians and performers: The lineup for Friday’s opening includes excerpts from the Washington Ballet’s “Nutcracker” and a concert by Sugar Bear and E.U. This is a market that warrants repeat visits: New vendors rotate in after Dec. 4. Noon to 8 p.m. daily from Friday through Dec. 23; closed Thanksgiving Day and Dec. 5. Free.
District Holiday Lights: Fourteen of D.C.’s commercial corridors are getting dressed up for the holidays, as shops and restaurants decorate with lights, tinsel and the odd inflatable snowman. Browse the festive displays beginning Friday night, and if you find yourself drawn in to do some shopping or to warm up with a drink or snack, so much the better. Participating neighborhoods include Mount Pleasant, Logan Circle and Cleveland Park, with a map of businesses on the D.C. Holiday Lights website. After exploring several neighborhoods, vote for your favorite displays online. Through Jan. 8. Free.
Manic Street Preachers and the London Suede at the Fillmore Silver Spring: When the Manic Street Preachers released their debut album in 1992, the Welsh neo-punk band vowed to burn hot and flame out quickly. Instead, the group turned to sweeping arena rock and became an institution; its most recent album, 2021’s “The Ultra Vivid Lament,” went to No. 1 on the U.K. charts. Yet the band is little known in the U.S., where it has rarely toured. (Friday’s show is the Manics’ second ever in the D.C. area.) Perhaps the trio’s lyrics are too bookish and political for mainstream U.S. success, but its rousing and increasingly eclectic music should have wide appeal. There are even a few outright pop songs in the catalogue of the Manics, who insist that “Ultra Vivid Lament” shows a strong Abba influence. Also on the bill is the London Suede, whose debut album arrived a year after the Manics’. This British neo-glam band (known at home simply as Suede) has a slightly higher profile in the U.S. but never achieved the prominence on this side of the Atlantic of such contemporaries as Blur. The group’s new “Autofiction,” the ninth album in a career interrupted by a 2003-2010 hiatus, has been hailed in Britain as a return to form. Maybe it will be Suede’s long-delayed American breakthrough. 8 p.m. $49.50.
Saturday, Nov. 19
Alexandria Cider Festival: Since 2012, Virginia cider makers have designated a week in November as the official Virginia Cider Week. While there are tastings and special releases across the state, the highlight in this region is the Alexandria Cider Festival. Ten producers from the Old Dominion, including Winchester Ciderworks, Potter’s Craft Cider and Albemarle CiderWorks, pour their hard ciders in the grounds of Old Town’s historic Lloyd House. Tickets include tastings and live music; food is available for purchase. Proceeds benefit Alexandria museums. 1 to 5 p.m. $55-$65. $20 designated drivers.
Native Cinema Showcase: The National Museum of the American Indian’s virtual film festival showcases Indigenous filmmakers, with screenings of six features and 30 shorts representing Indigenous communities in eight countries. During the Native Cinema Showcase, tune in for documentaries; a collection of family-friendly short films; music videos; and longer works such as “Bootlegger,” a Canadian drama about a debate over the sale of alcohol on a reserve in Quebec. A few of the films have a limit on the number of viewers, so you’ll want to register in advance. While the festival is predominantly online, Saturday brings an in-person screening of the documentary “Imagining the Indian: The Fight Against Native American Mascoting” at 2 p.m. in the museum’s Rasmuson Theater, followed by a discussion with a panel including museum director Cynthia Chavez Lamar. Seating is free on a first-come, first-served basis. The conversation will also be live-streamed. Festival Friday through Nov. 25; in-person event Saturday from 2 to 5 p.m. Free.
Bartees Strange at 9:30 Club: Bartees Strange went from very D.C. corporate jobs (including, most recently, communications director for a nonprofit) to an alternate career path where he’s now a rock star headlining 9:30 Club. (Dreams really do come true!) The genre-hopping Strange is touring behind his sophomore album, “Farm to Table,” which is a bit more chilled out than his frenetic, critically acclaimed debut. It’s also a declaration of Strange’s arrival to the upper echelons of indie rock — complete with boasts about FaceTiming Bon Iver frontman Justin Vernon. Doors at 6 p.m. $20.
Club Quarantine Live at the Kennedy Center: In the early days of the pandemic, D-Nice’s streaming DJ sets on Instagram brought joy and funk to huge audiences, ranging from Michelle Obama and De La Soul to music lovers sitting on their group house couches. D-Nice is taking the show on the road and becoming the first hip-hop DJ to headline the Kennedy Center’s Opera House. Special guests include EPMD, Digable Planets, Faith Evans, LeToya Luckett and many more. Creative black-tie outfits are requested. 7:30 p.m. $189-$299.
D.C. Punk Rock Flea at St. Stephen Episcopal Church: Where do you find the perfect gift for a friend or co-worker who gets excited about zines, vintage hardcore records, punky pins and hand-dyed vegan scarves? That’s exactly what sets the D.C. Punk Rock Flea apart from other markets at this time of year. Held in the basement of the legendary punk venue St. Stephen’s in Columbia Heights, the event doubles as a food drive for We Are Family, an organization that delivers food, gifts and other services to D.C. seniors. There’s no admission charge, so bring a can or two of food. Noon to 5 p.m. Free.
Dupont Circle 18th Street Popup: Local artisans have you covered if you’re looking to freshen up your home before that two-dozen-guest Thanksgiving you regret agreeing to host. This pop-up market, featuring 14 makers and hosted outside on the 1800-1900 blocks of 18th Street NW, is focused on home decor, including textiles, pottery, wall art and wood crafts. Expect houseplants and macramé for sale from vendors like PLNTR, whose storefront is located steps away. Noon to 5 p.m. Free.
Friendsgiving with Darling Nikki at Hill Prince: Join DJs Jerome Baker III and Mathias — the talents behind the twice-monthly Darling Nikki party at Capo and veterans of the city’s top nightspots — and guest Micky Slicks for an early Friendsgiving in the back of comfortable H Street NE lounge Hill Prince. Dance to everything from retro R&B jams to current pop hits, effortlessly mixed. You’ll be grinning in no time. 10 p.m. $5.
DC Gaymers ‘Pokémon Scarlet’ and ‘Pokémon Violet’ Release Party: The release of “Pokémon Scarlet” and “Pokémon Violet” has the gaming world abuzz, and not just because you can make really freaky sandwiches to feed your pokepals: There’s a large open world to explore and a number of new characters. Get a taste of the game at Uproar, where DC Gaymers, a group of LGBTQ gamers, is holding a release party. (BYO Nintendo Switch.) In addition to battling mons on Uproar’s TVs, there’s a raffle for a special Pokémon OLED Nintendo Switch. Doors open at 5 p.m.; Pokémon from 6 to 9 p.m. Free admission.
Sunday, Nov. 20
The World Pup at Barkhaus: If your dog loves Lionel Messi or Christian Pulisic as much as you do, bring it to the World Pup party at Alexandria’s dog-friendly Barkhaus bar. The soccer-themed event, held during the first World Cup match between Qatar and Ecuador, includes photo ops, a food truck for dogs, free puppuccinos, and food and drink specials for humans, too. Dress your four-legged friend in an international outfit to win prizes, or fill out a World Cup bracket. A portion of the day’s proceeds benefits Action Against Hunger. 11 a.m. to 4 p.m. Free.
Ted Lasso Costume Party at Dacha Navy Yard: The World Cup starts Sunday. The next series of “Ted Lasso” starts — well, “at some point,” to quote Jason Sudeikis at the Emmys. But the beginning of the world’s biggest soccer tournament might as well celebrate America’s most-loved soccer export. Dacha Navy Yard is screening the opening match between Qatar and Ecuador alongside a Ted Lasso costume contest. Dress like Coach Beard or wear an AFC Richmond jersey and receive a free beer; win the contest and receive a $100 gift card. The match begins at 11 a.m.; stick around for live music from Cover Art at 1:30 p.m. 11 a.m. to 5 p.m. Free.
Bikes and Lights at Watkins Regional Park: Get a bit of a festive workout by pedaling through 2.5 million lights at the Festival of Lights’ annual Bikes and Lights event, which takes place before Watkins Regional Park’s seasonal display opens to cars on Nov. 25. No vehicles will be allowed on the roads during this event, so cyclists will have the three-mile route to themselves, riding past animated displays ranging from Santa Claus to “The Wizard of Oz.” Holiday-themed costumes and bike decorations are welcome, and participants are required to have lights on their bike and to wear a helmet. 5 to 8 p.m. $5 per bike; children 10 and younger ride free. Online registration required.
Groovy Nate at Hook Hall: There’s been a lot of talk about the Grammys this week, but let’s not forget a local artist who was nominated last year. Groovy Nate, who received his nod for contributions with the One Tribe Collective, has one of the youngest audiences in town — and what would you expect from a man who caters to the pre-K and early-elementary crowd? In Groovy Nate’s world, there’s beatboxing on “The Wheels on the Bus,” and the musical PSA “Put Your Seat Belt On” is backed by a deep go-go groove. He visits Hook Hall in Park View for the Family Fundays series, where there are crafts for kids and coffee for parents. 10 a.m. to noon. $5 per family.
Rock Creek Beach Party in Rock Creek Park: Earlier this month, the National Park Service announced that Upper Beach Drive, a thoroughfare that’s been closed to cars and open to cyclists and pedestrians since the beginning of the pandemic, will remain closed to cars year-round. That was welcome news to the Rock Creek Conservancy, a nonprofit group that works to preserve the park — so much so that it’s throwing a party. Head to Picnic Grove 10 off Beach Drive on Sunday morning for a celebration of nature with bird walks led by D.C. Audubon, readings from the D.C. Public Library, demonstrations about immersive plants in the park, hot chocolate and s’mores, and music by DJ Lance. 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. Free.
Ice rink preview at the Wharf: Despite last week’s 70-degree days, chills this week portend the end of PSL season loud and clear. Those as eager as the weather to welcome winter can get a preview of the snowy months at the Wharf, which is celebrating its ice rink reopening for the season Nov. 23. But before just anyone can lace up their skates, the Wharf offers a one-day free skate for Southwest D.C. residents. Proof of residency is required, and anyone under 16 years old must be accompanied by an adult. Noon to 6 p.m. Free.
Ani DiFranco at 9:30 Club: She started as a solo troubadour, accompanied by just her acoustic guitar, yet Ani DiFranco was never really a folkie. The stalwartly indie feminist singer-songwriter adopted attitude from punk and phrasing from hip-hop, and gradually developed a jazzy, soulful style exemplified by her latest album, 2021’s “Revolutionary Love.” At 52, DiFranco is not the relentless road warrior she used to be, but her mellower style is not a sign of retreat. Her newest material may be unusually lush, but the pattering congas and swirling flutes don’t blunt the edge of such songs as “Do or Die,” which includes a vision of seeing “right there on Pennsylvania Avenue / the sheetless KKK.” The show will include three acts signed to the singer’s Righteous Babe label: Gracie and Rachel, Jocelyn Mackenzie and Holly Miranda. Doors open at 7 p.m. $41.
Habib Koité and Bamada at City Winery: When Mali’s Habib Koité made his European debut in 1991, most African musicians known outside their homelands fronted big bands that emphasized Western instruments and drew heavily from African American soul and funk. Koité changed the paradigm when he founded Bamada, a virtuosic four-man backing group with a gentle acoustic style that features such traditional instruments as the xylophone-like balafon. Koité himself plays guitar, but tuned so it sounds like a n’goni, a West African lute with a chiming tone. Koité’s songs, with lyrics in Bambara, French and occasionally English, are built on rippling African polyrhythms, but such lilting tunes as “Baro” also feature vocal harmonies akin to California folk rock. That’s a mode that comes as naturally to Koité and Bamada as the call-and-response chant of “Cigarette Abana,” the rollicking tune that was their first African hit and remains a crowd-pleaser three decades later. 7:30 p.m. $35-$55.
Monday, Nov. 21
Soccer in the Circle: The first Soccer in the Circle outdoor viewing party was held in the middle of Dupont Circle during the 2010 World Cup, drawing hundreds of fans to watch the United States draw with England. In 2014, with the support of the German Embassy, an enormous U.S.-supporting crowd cheered their team despite a loss to the eventual champions. On Monday, the Welsh government is among the sponsors of a seven-hour Soccer in the Circle party. The centerpiece is the 2 p.m. match between the United States and Wales, shown on a giant outdoor screen, but it also features a DJ spinning Welsh and American music, a painting collaboration with Welsh and American artists, Welsh food, and, as an appetizer, the 11 a.m. match between the Netherlands and Senegal. 9 a.m. to 4 p.m. Free.
Capitals Rock the Retro at 9:30 Club: The Washington Capitals 2020 Reverse Retro jersey proved to be one of the best-selling jerseys in the league — hard to outdo, until this year’s design got a whole party dedicated in its honor. During an event hosted by Elliot Segal of radio show “Elliot in the Morning,” select Capitals players will celebrate the jersey drop with ’90s Tribute band White Ford Bronco at 9:30 Club. Fans can pick up a free Reverse Retro T-shirt (not jersey) with a ticket purchase. Doors open at 7 p.m. $25.
Wednesday, Nov. 23
‘The Last Waltz’ at Boundary Stone: “The Last Waltz,” one of the greatest concert films of all time, captures the Band’s star-studded farewell concert on Thanksgiving Day 1976. And every Thanksgiving Eve since 2011, it’s been shown at Boundary Stone, Bloomingdale’s neighborhood pub, with full sound. Book a table for 9 p.m., or slightly before if you want to ease into Martin Scorsese’s epic documentary. 9 p.m. Free.
The Night Before at the Black Cat: For decades, the Black Cat’s Red Room has been a refuge on Thanksgiving Eve, welcoming those trying to escape their families and those who weren’t making the trip home. This year, the Cat is bringing back two veteran DJs: Mark Zimin and Stereo Faith, whose Britpop- and indie-pop-fueled Mousetrap parties have been drawing crowds for a long, long time. Doors open at 8 p.m. Free.
Rare Essence at City Winery: If you’re going to feast on Thursday, you might as well dance off some calories in advance. Go-go legends Rare Essence take over the loft at City Winery for a preholiday show. There’s limited seating in the loft, so arrive early — doors open at 7:30 p.m. — to try to find a place at the bar. 9:30 p.m. $35-$40.
Disq at DC9: Here’s one way to keep your take on indie rock from becoming formulaic: Start a band with multiple singer-songwriters. On its second album, the new “Desperately Imagining Someplace Quiet,” Disq performs tunes composed by four of its five members. If that weren’t enough to provide variety, the Wisconsin group flips styles within individual songs: Guitarist Logan Severson’s “Prize Contest Life” is an easygoing midtempo rocker with high-tenor vocals that detours suddenly into raw-throated grungy aggression. Such shifts are characteristic of the album, which floats blithe melodies over three-guitar roar and occasionally throws synth noise or bassist Raina Bock’s soprano into the mix. The stylistic restlessness suits the band’s lyrics, which depict uneasy minds and a capricious universe. Mostly, though, the musical permutations just ensure that Disq never settles into a rut. 8 p.m. $13-$15.