There's a ton going on in the city this weekend, with an influx of Capital Pride-related parties and events in addition to the typical beer festivals, baseball games and concerts. So here are this weekend's best bets in nightlife, festivals, museums, music and much more around the Washington area.
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Through Sunday: As part of the ongoing centennial celebration of the National Park Service, the Postal Museum opened "Trailblazing: 100 Years of Our National Parks," a two-year exhibition featuring original stamp art and other artifacts related to the parks and other NPS historic sites. It features many stories of sending and receiving mail during unique times, including letters saved by Japanese Americans who were in internment camps during World War II. The exhibition runs through March 25, 2018, and admission to the museum is free.
Through Sunday: The annual D.C. Jazz Festival gets into full swing this weekend, with shows both inside and outdoors and at every price point. On Friday, George V. Johnson Jr. plays the National Gallery of Art Sculpture Garden, with Jazz in the Garden merging with the "Jazz in the 'Hoods" program. Saturday features a number of "Jazz in the 'Hoods" events, including a live jazz mural project at the D.C. Alley Museum. And on Sunday, Etienne Charles brings his "Creole Soul" to the Hamilton for a show at 7:30 p.m. ($22.75-$41.25). The festival runs through June 19 at venues throughout the region, and ticket prices vary. For a full schedule, visit dcjazzfest.org.
Thursday: Five Virginia breweries fight to the death in the Virginia Royal Rumble at the Mad Fox Tap Room in Glover Park — well, the death of a keg, anyway. Devils Backbone, Hardywood, Adroit Theory, Strangeways and Lickinghole Creek have each provided a keg to Mad Fox for the event. The first one to be drained wins bragging rights. With rare beers in the mix, including Devils Backbone's Jin & Khronic IPA and Strangeways' Guarded By Monkeys Wild Biere de Garde, we could be in for a tough battle. Taps open at 7 p.m. and admission is free.
Thursday: Capital Pride begins in earnest on Thursday night. Highlights include Latino Pride at Town, with "RuPaul's Drag Race" veteran Yara Sofia and El Zol DJ Joe el Especialista; a rooftop pool party at Vida Penthouse Pool & Lounge at the Yards, with DJ Shea Van Horn spinning dance music while guests sip cocktails or take a dip; and a Pride edition of DC Brau's weekly bingo in its taproom, hosted by members of the Out Riders Women's Motorcycle Club.
Friday: In an effort to better understand the current world, author Chuck Klosterman, appearing at Politics and Prose, jumps in a literary time machine so he can examine the present from the future in his new book, “But What If We’re Wrong?” The questions he attempts to answer deal with rock-and-roll, television, sports, democracy and gravity. Perhaps he'll try to answer some of your own probing questions? His appearance starts at 7 p.m. and admission is free.
Friday: Capital Pride's "opening party," Hex, takes over Union Market's Dock 5 event space from 8:30 p.m. to 2 a.m., featuring performances by Chi Chi DeVayne and Thorgy Thor of "RuPaul's Drag Race," DJs Lisa Moody and Grind, dance troupes, drag queens, magicians and other entertainment. Tickets are $25 in advance, and "magical" costumes are suggested. Looking for For something more low-key? Try the Black Cat's Booty Rex party, where the DJs of the She Rex and Anthology of Booty take over both floors of the club, starting at 9 p.m.
Friday: Beyoncé’s "The Formation" World Tour, which hits Baltimore's M&T Bank Stadium, is a spectacle of sound and vision, with cameras and lights tracking the singer's every move — and, this being Queen Bey, there are many, many moves; she's slaying more than 25 songs each night. For her sold-out performance in Baltimore, expect a set list filled with popular bangers — "Bow Down," "Run the World (Girls)" and "Flawless" — as well as new tracks from "Lemonade," such as "Hold Up," "Don't Hurt Yourself" and "All Night." She also has mixed in Prince tributes, singing "Purple Rain" and "The Beautiful Ones." The show starts at 7:30 p.m. and it's sold out, but there are plenty of re-sale and secondary market tickets available.
Friday-Saturday: Port City Brewing celebrates the release of its Derecho Common beer with two days of parties at the brewery. (Short version of the story: Nasty storm knocked out power in 2012, Port City made the most of it by making this beer, and now the California Common-style beer a popular seasonal release.) The parties this year will spill into the parking lot with live music and food trucks each day. It all starts at 2 p.m. on Friday and noon on Saturday and runs to 10 p.m. each day; admission is free and beers are priced individually.
Friday-Sunday: The first-place Washington Nationals play host to the almost-last-place Phillies this weekend at Nationals Park. The non-baseball highlight comes Friday, which is billed as '80s Night. That means a concert by the Legwarmers at 4:30 p.m. on the Budweiser Terrace, and a free Nationals fanny pack to the first 20,000 through the gates. Friday's game starts at 7:05 p.m., Saturday at 12:05 p.m. and Sunday at 4:05 p.m., and tickets are $17-$400.
Friday-Sunday: Celebrate Fairfax is also celebrating 35 years of the annual community festival this year at the Fairfax County Government Center. There's plenty to enjoy for every member of the family, including rides and contests. There's also music each day, including the B-52s on Saturday and Living Colour on Sunday, and each day ends with a fireworks display. Celebrate Fairfax runs on Friday from 6 p.m. to midnight, Saturday from 10 a.m. to midnight and Sunday from 11 a.m. to 7 p.m. Tickets are $5-$22.
Saturday: There's a lot to recommend the Americana Beer Fest at Morven Park: music from Wild Child and Trampled by Turtles; food from the Urban Poutine, Astro Doughnuts and Red Hook Lobster Pound trucks; Brew U education workshops; and a game zone set up for the kid in all of us. (Think: human foosball and keg bowling.) But the festival also has one of the best regional beer lists you'll find, with leading Virginia breweries Aslin, Ocelot, Fairwinds, Vanish, Crooked Run, Champion and Pale Fire, along with names you know from Washington, Maryland and around the country. There's also a collaboration with a good cause: sales of a session ESB created by Old Ox Brewing and World of Beer - One Loudon raises funds for Boulder Crest Retreat, which offers therapeutic programs to combat veterans and their families. The festival runs from 2 to 7 p.m. and tickets are $45-$100.
Saturday: The U.S. Men's Soccer Team needs to beat Paraguay to guarantee a spot in the playoffs of the Copa America tournament. The loudest place to cheer on the team will be Laughing Man Tavern, which was standing-room-only for Tuesday's match against Costa Rica, so you'll need to get there early. Other popular viewing spots include Penn Social, the Airedale and Biergarten Haus. (See our full Copa America story for more bars.) The match starts at 7 p.m.
Saturday: Capital Pride starts rolling to a rousing finish as the Pride Parade marches 1.5 miles from Dupont Circle through Logan Circle to the 14th Street NW corridor, led by Grand Marshal Leslie Jordan (of "American Horror Story"). The parade marches from 4:30 to 7:30 p.m. and it's free to watch.
Saturday: There is no end to the Capital Pride-related choices on Saturday, both before and after the parade. Expect 17th Street to be the epicenter of daytime action: JR's opens its beer garden at 1 p.m.; Duke's Grocery and Port City Brewing are teaming for a party starting at 2 p.m. at the restaurant; and Cobalt is open at 3 p.m. with $3 vodka drinks. The night's biggest events are all in the U Street corridor: DJs Matt Bailer and Shea Van Horn bring their long-running Top 40 and alternative dance party Mixtape to the 9:30 Club; The official Women's Party takes over the Howard Theatre with DJs, live performances and go-go dancers; Town's drag show features special guests BOB The Drag Queen and Naomi Smalls (the winner and runner up of the most recent season of "RuPaul’s Drag Race") before DJs Ed Bailey and Wess take over for the night. And, there's the after-party at Flash, where doors don't open until 3:30 a.m., and DJ Alex Acosta keeps going until after dawn.
Sunday: The Capital Pride Festival and concerts get underway at noon on Pennsylvania Avenue NW, with headliner Meghan Trainor taking the Capitol Concert Stage at 7 p.m. Admission is free, although a pit pass for the concert is $35. But the party's not over after the concert: Cobalt keeps the "magic" theme going with a closing party called Mother of Dragons. (It starts at 10 p.m., giving you time to watch GoT before heading to Dupont.) DJ Power Infiniti provides the tunes, and Stoli is $4 all night.
Sunday: The annual Discover Strathmore open house, which this year it's calling "Off the Page," takes visitors inside children's literature and song by introducing its summer exhibition "Turning the Page: Children’s Book Illustrations." Other highlights include Ellen Cherry, a former artist in residence, debuting a new song about the Strathmore, and DC Shorts presenting a family film showcase. The event runs from 11 a.m. to 4 p.m. and admission is free.
Sunday: Author Nick Sousanis talks about his life and his book, "Unflattening," at the National Gallery of Art. Sousanis wrote a dissertation at Columbia in comic book form, and eventually turned that into "Unflattering," which won a number of awards in the past year. (He'll also sign the book on Sunday.) The talk starts at 2 p.m. in the East Building Auditorium, and admission is free.