What?? I know. Yes, these events exist and they are plentiful. AND, in what is probably a first for this blog, I am giving them to you with enough advanced notice that you can actually attend them. Yes, this blog is being useful. Do not adjust your expectations accordingly. But, without further ado, here are things you can do beyond the Mall:
See a Show: The Source Theater Festival continues this weekend with plays on July 3rd, including one with this tagline “On a rainy night in a spaceship bar, Rocketman buys drinks from an astronaut…” I thought of David Bowie. Then Elton John. Then Marvin the Martian. Is there anything better? OR you could see A Matter of Size at the Avalon movie theater! It’s a dark comedy about overweight Israeli guys who become sumo wrestlers and has received alot of critical acclaim. (trailer here)
Eat Special Holiday Snacks: So the Washingtonian has compiled a list of restaurants doing 4th of July specials. From fancy roast chicken picnic baskets, to patriotic macaroons, to fancy 4th of July hotdogs, they’ve got it. For the Benedict Arnolds, Againn gastropub is giving out a free bag of cookies if you wear tennis whites to watch Wimbeldon there.
Go on a Fancy Boat Cruise: The Spirit of Washington offers a cruise on the Potomac to watch fireworks on the 4th. Downside, it costs $150 a person. Upside, you can wear a monocle and laugh heartily at the plebians on the mall. Silly townsfolk! It also comes with food and drink. And no children.
Go to a Nats Game: The all-American sport. The Nats are playing the Mets every night. Friday @7:05, Saturday @4:10 and Sunday @1:35. Get tickets!
Listen to (non-country) music: Yes, I say non-country because everyone knows country music on a patriotic holiday is a trap to talk about America’s awesomeness. However, for all you non-country fans, DC’s Southwest Waterfront Uncle Sam Jam will have 5 bands and 6 DJs, while BYT lists other music scene offerings.
- Do something ACTIVE: In the land of KFC double downs, we folks need to get outside sometimes. Kayaking, biking and hiking options abound in the District (see my previous article here) and if you are just too lazy, have a goddamn picnic. DC has many green spaces.
FINALLY if you don’t mind crowds: the Smithsonian Folklife Festival will be on the National Mall, while the Declaration of Independence will be read aloud at the National Archives. I am geeking out a bit about the latter. I mean, wouldn’t it be cool to hear it read out loud and have everyone cheer and talk sh*t about the redcoats?? BUT maybe that’s just me.
(Oh, and if you noticed, two things are absent from these events: children and reenactments. This is intentional. I have no concept of children since I don’t have them. However, Alexandria and Fairfax have 4th of July festivals that are very kid-friendly. As for reenactments: churning butter by hand or having people in talk to you in character and refusing to abandon it while giving practical advice (i.e. “where’s the bathroom?” …”oh dear lady, perchance you mean the OUTHOUSE?”) is my idea of a living hell. However, Mt. Vernon loves it, so go there)