Friday, June 15
Bloomsday at Upshur Street Books: James Joyce's masterpiece, “Ulysses,” tells the story of events that occur on June 16, 1904 — a date fans have come to refer to as “Bloomsday,” after the main character, Leopold Bloom. Every June 16, Upshur Street Books hosts a marathon celebration of “Ulysses,” with guests taking turns reading Joyce's prose aloud. The first line, “Stately, plump Buck Mulligan came from the stairhead, bearing a bowl of lather on which a mirror and a razor lay crossed,” will be read at 5 p.m. Friday. If all goes well, says owner Paul Ruppert, they will reach the final “Yes” of Molly Bloom's famous soliloquy around midnight the next day. 5 p.m. Friday through midnight Saturday. Free.
National Geographic Explorers Festival: At the heart of National Geographic’s mission are its explorers: scientists, anthropologists, educators and journalists who try to improve the world. They’re coming together at National Geographic’s D.C. headquarters for a week-long festival to tackle difficult questions. (The mission statement: “Our planet is at a crossroads. If we don’t act, it could be too late.”) The public is invited to participate in several events that cap the Explorers Festival, including a Party for the Planet on Friday with live music, cocktails and food trucks (6 to 10 p.m., $25); a day-long symposium on Saturday June 16 about “Saving Ourselves From Ourselves,” looking at how technology could save the planet (9 a.m. to 4 p.m., $50); and Sunday’s FURTHER Film Festival, which includes short documentaries shot all over the globe (11 a.m. to 5 p.m., $10). Times and prices vary by event.
Rosslyn World Cup Screening: Portugal vs. Spain: The Rosslyn Business Improvement District and DC United have joined forces to show matches on a large screen in the Central Place Plaza above the Metro station, with soccer games, foosball tables and a bar selling wine and beer. So far, the only confirmed events are for Portugal vs. Spain (kickoff at 2 p.m.) and the World Cup Final (July 15 at 11 a.m.), but other matches may be added to the schedule. 1 to 5 p.m. Free.
'Daguerreotypes: Five Decades of Collecting' at the National Portrait Gallery: Escape your Instagram feed and explore the National Portrait Gallery’s collection of daguerreotypes, the earliest practical form of photography. The exhibition, inspired by the museum’s 50th anniversary, includes portraits of notable figures in American history, including showman P.T. Barnum (who posed alongside performer Tom Thumb), Civil War nurse and mental-health activist Dorothea Dix, Seneca Chief Governor Blacksnake and U.S. Navy Commodore Matthew C. Perry. Through June 2, 2019. Free.
Lisa Fischer at Blues Alley: As a solo artist, Lisa Fischer is a one-hit wonder, best known for her 1991 quiet storm ballad, “How Can I Ease the Pain.” But as a working musician, Fischer has had a rich, varied career, singing backup for everyone from Tina Turner and Luther Vandross to the Rolling Stones and Nine Inch Nails. It is that life — on the margins of fame — that was featured in the Oscar-winning documentary “20 Feet From Stardom,” a film that put Fischer back in the spotlight. She now tours with global fusion trio Grand Baton, rearranging pop, rock and jazz classics with the vocal prowess of a headliner. Friday through Sunday at 8 and 10 p.m. $65-$70.
Saturday, June 16
DC JazzFest at the Wharf: The 14th annual D.C. JazzFest wraps up this weekend with two days of performances at the Wharf. The festival’s marquee event, on Saturday night, features Prince collaborator Maceo Parker; Robert Glasper’s new group, R+R=NOW; and “Hamilton” star Leslie Odom Jr. uniting for a triple-bill at the Anthem. Multiple stages of free music along the Southwest Waterfront’s piers on Saturday and Sunday feature performances by experimental trumpeter Christian Scott aTunde Adjuah, pianist Mark G. Meadows, Italy’s Fabrizio Bosso and France’s Ancestral Memories. Free performances begin at 10:45 a.m. Saturday and noon Sunday. Leslie Odom Jr. at 7 p.m. (doors) Saturday. Free for most events; $75-$140 for Odom, R+R=NOW and Parker.
Columbia Heights Day Festival: One of the coolest community parties in the District, the Columbia Heights Day Festival brings a full day of entertainment for all ages to 11th Street NW and the fields at Tubman Elementary School. Kids can jump on a moon bounce at the carnival and hear family-friendly performers; adults can get a drink in the beer garden, check out local bands, sample food from neighborhood restaurants — Meridian Pint is smoking pigs on its patio — and try free dance and fitness classes. 11 a.m. to 6 p.m. Free.
Columbia Pike Blues Fest: The intersection of Columbia Pike and South Walter Reed Drive turns into a street party during this free music festival that’s been a fixture in Arlington for more than 20 years. Listen to more than seven hours of music from performers such as the eight-piece band King Soul, vocalist Don Bryant and roots rocker Nikki Hill. Besides the blues, enjoy food and activities including the Arlington Art Truck, where you can shop for clothing and accessories from local makers and try your hand at an art project. 1 to 8:30 p.m. Free.
Cold Cave at the Black Cat: After coming of age in the Boston punk scene as the frontman for American Nightmare, Wesley Eisold traded hardcore for darkwave, re-christening himself as Cold Cave. True to its name, Cold Cave makes chilly, gothic synth-pop, with Eisold’s hollow howl reminiscent of Joy Division’s Ian Curtis and Bauhaus’s Peter Murphy. Since his 2011 breakthrough, “Cherish the Light Years,” Cold Cave’s output had been limited to singles and one-offs, including a collaboration with industrial icon Genesis P-Orridge. But this year, Eisold returned with “You & Me & Infinity,” a four-tracker full of the drum-machine dirges for which he’s best known. 8 p.m. $15-$18.
Sing-a-Long 'Sound of Music' at Wolf Trap: Join nuns with flowing habits, women wearing clothes made out of flower-pattern curtains and a lonely goatherd or two at Wolf Trap for a singalong version of “The Sound of Music.” (Lyrics are shown on the screen, in case you’ve forgotten a few lines from “Climb Ev’ry Mountain.”) The evening begins with a costume contest, followed by the 1965 film. 7:15 p.m. $25-$45.
Year of the Ox at Old Ox Brewery: Have you ever thought about how your beer would taste with ice cream? That summery pairing is at the heart of Old Ox Brewery's fourth birthday party in Ashburn. A $15 ticket includes a flight of four beer tasters and four frozen treats. Blood orange gose with a lemon Italian ice? Black Ox porter with Ben and Jerry's Coffee Coffee BuzzBuzzBuzz? Done. If you're not a fan of brain freeze, the celebration also includes the debut of the Belgian-style Dry-Hopped Table Beer, food trucks and live music from cover band Mandatory Recess. Noon to 6 p.m. Free admission.
Sunday, June 17
U2 at Capital One Arena: U2 is one of the few stadium-rock bands left, so it’s a treat when the band plays the comparatively intimate confines of an arena. The Irish icons return for their first non-stadium show in the Washington area in more than a decade in support of last year’s “Songs of Experience,” an album of letters to the people and places closest to Bono’s heart. U2’s recent set lists have featured most of that album, but fans can expect to hear favorites from their nearly four-decades-deep discography, from 1980’s “I Will Follow” to the present. 8 p.m. $41-$413.73.
Oyster and Cidre Blanc Fest at Anxo Cidery: Spending Sunday afternoon hanging out on a patio slurping oysters and sipping a dry, refreshing cider sounds pretty good. Anxo is opening its outdoor space on Father's Day for its first Oyster and Cidre Blanc Fest, pairing either grilled or freshly shucked oysters from Pearl Dive and Republic restaurants with glasses of its house Cidre Blanc, which has notes of stone fruit that should pair well with seafood. 11 a.m. to 4 p.m. Free admission.
The Universal Listening Room at U Street Music Hall: DJ Will Eastman — the co-founder of U Street Music Hall — thinks that we don't spend enough time hanging out, listening to music and talking to people. His new weekly party, the Universal Listening Room, wants to change that. Every Sunday night, Eastman and guest DJs are throwing open the doors at U Street Music Hall to host a party — but, he stresses, not a dance party or a DJ gig. The selectors will be playing their favorite songs in their entirety, hopscotching from rock to hip-hop to new wave to house, without worrying about beat-matching and BPMs. Guests are invited to get lost in the music, rediscover old favorites and talk to their friends or a stranger at the next bar stool. “We invite you to slow down, turn off social media, and to put your phone down for an evening,” Eastman writes in the evening's “manifesto.” Good luck with that, but it sounds like a great way to wind down the weekend. (If you're not a 9-to-5-er, there are $5 beer-and-a-shot specials.) 10 p.m. Free.
— Fritz Hahn, Adele Chapin, Chris Kelly