I actually love summer… I don’t mind fall, but it reminds me that winter is coming, so I’m usually sad when labour days comes around. That being said, there are actually quite a lot to look forward to in D.C. in the fall. Here are 5 events happening in Washington this September that I’m particularly excited about:
THE DC SHORT FILM FESTIVAL
I have a short attention span, so seeing 7-9 movies in 90 minutes sounds pretty great to me. The DC Short Film Festival runs from Septembre 8-18, 2016 and showcases 131 films from 33 nations around the world, including plenty from France. A lot of the festival is geared towards aspiring filmmakers, with practical workshops on fundraising to finance your project or how to write a film review (actually, I might be interested in that one!) but there are plenty of film screenings too of course!
I just really love the creativity involved in PARK(ing) Day , which will be held from 9Am to 4PM on September 16. It initially started in San Francisco to encourage businesses and residents to rethink how they use public space by converting metered parking spots into temporary, pop-up parks.
UNCENSORED AND BANNED BOOKS WEEK AT MARTIN LUTHER KING JR LIBRARY
The D.C. Public Library, along with libraries across the country, is shedding light on literary censorship in American history through Banned Books Week, which will start September 25 and wraps up with Uncensored, a cocktail party on September 30. That event will feature live music, as well as local mixologists’ boozie interpretation of a specific banned book, like a chartreuse concoction based on Ronald Dahl’s The Witches. Tickets aren’t cheap at $50 (you can buy tickets here) but all ticket sales will support DC Public Library programs and services. Also, this will be one of our last chance to hang out at the Martin Luther King Jr. Memorial Library at 901 G St. NW before it closes down for renovations starting in early 2017. Throughout the month of September, the D.C. public library system will be hiding copies of books that were once banned or challenged in businesses around the city and invite Washingtonians to go on a bit of an uncensored books scavenger hunt. Find a book (Compas Rose Coffee is one of the spots!) send a pic on twitter to @dcpl_literati using the hashtag and you could win free tix to the party! (plus it just sounds like a fun thing to do!!)
Still on the topic of books, I always look forward the Library of Congress National Book Festival, happening this year on September 24 (and still at the convention center…. I miss the days when it was held on the mall!) Stephen King will be there, as will Shonda Rhimes (that’s going to be a popular session), Bob Woodward (always popular with the DC crowds), and Salman Rushdie (always popular with me!!)
HISTORIC OPENING OF THE MUSEUM OF AFRICAN AMERICAN HISTORY
You know you’ve lived in Washington for a long time when you’re getting ready to see your second new Smithsonian museum open on the National Mall (and third overall, I already lived in DC when the National Air and Space Museum’s Steven F. Udvar-Hazy Center opened in Chantilly). The first one was of course, the National Museum of the American Indian in 2004. But I feel like I’ve really followed the NMAAHC, from its authorization in 2003 to the site selection in 2006 and finally construction after president Barrack Obama helped break ground in February 2012. I can’t wait to take an “after”-selfie once the building is fully finished.
The much anticipated grand opening will happen September 24th at 1PM, after an official dedication ceremony earlier that morning (featuring Barrack Obama no less). The NMAAHC definitely knows how to throw an opening party, with free three-day, two-night festival on the Washington Monument Grounds, featuring live music by Public Enemy and the Roots among others. I’ll probably skip all that, but I can’t wait to go inside the beautiful bronze building for the first time! Got my timed entry tickets for the 26th and I can’t wait!
On the topic of museums, I’m also looking forward to reopening of the National Gallery’s East Building Galleries. Designed by IM Pei (of Louvre Pyramid fame) the angular building has been under renovations for close to three years. In addition to 12,000 new square-feet of exhibition space, the museum will now have a rooftop sculpture garden, featuring Katharina Fritsch’s “Hahn/Cock” giant blue rooster. That one. It’s already there, I can see it from the street and I can’t wait to get closer!
ART ALL NIGHT – MADE IN DC
By now I’ve accepted that Art all Night isn’t trying to be Paris’ Nuit Blanche and I’ve come to appreciate the event for what it is here. It’s a great evening of cultural happenings showcasing some of the city’s coolest neighbourhoods and emerging or established artists. This year, the festival takes place on Saturday, September 24th from 7PM to 3PM in Capitol Heights, Dupont Circle, H Street, North Capitol, Shaw as well as Tentleytown and Van Ness. This year the festival will feature District of Columbia artists and collectives only, in celebration of the Made in DC initiative which I find pretty cool! The full schedule hasn’t been released yet, but you can check out the Art All Night website for updates.
Any event you’re looking forward to this fall?