DC events calendar
Plan ahead with Time Out's guide to the biggest and best annual Washington, DC events, festivals and concerts
Time Out’s Washington, DC events calendar is your one-stop shop for things to do year-round in the National Capital. And believe us, there’s loads on offer, with festivals, cultural celebrations, street parties, parades and more popping up all annually over the city—and in the midst of some of its most iconic sights and attractions. So whether you’re looking for Easter egg hunts at the White House in spring, Independence Day concerts at the Capitol in summer, national book festivals in fall or Holiday fun in winter, we’ve got you covered. Read on for the best events and things to do in Washington, DC in spring, summer, autumn and winter.
Adams Morgan Day
For over a quarter of a century, thousands of DC residents have come out to celebrate this community, home to large Latino, white, African and African American populations. Musicians, crafts and ethnic foods are in ample supply.
www.ammainstreet.org. Transport: Dupont Circle or Woodley Park Metro.
- 18th Street, NW, between Columbia Road & Florida Avenue, Adams Morgan
- 2nd Sun in Sept
National Book Festival
Sponsored by the Library of Congress, the Book Festival features dozens of authors, illustrators, poets and storytellers, all reading, performing and signing in block after block of pavilions themed around “Fiction and Imagination,” “History and Biography,” “Mysteries and Thrillers” and so on. Admission is free.
www.loc.gov/bookfest. Transport: Archives-Naval Memorial or Federal Triangle Metro.
- National Mall, NW, between 7th & 14th Streets
- Late Sept or early Oct
Annual High Heel Race
Dupont Circle residents and gawkers from across the city swarm to 17th Street to catch this ultimate drag race, which features outrageously costumed contestants promenading up and down—then sprinting down a two-block stretch in the heart of the capital’s gay ghetto. The event itself lasts only minutes, but the street-party atmosphere is festive and the scenery fabulous.
www.jrsbar-dc.com. Transport: Dupont Circle Metro.
- 17th Street, NW, between S & P Streets, Dupont Circle
- On or around Oct 31
Marine Corps Marathon
The “Marathon of Monuments” draws around 30,000 runners from around the world, and no wonder: The course winds along the banks of the Potomac, through Georgetown and Rock Creek Park, past the city’s most famous sites and monuments, finishing at the Iwo Jima memorial in Arlington. Spectators and supporters turn the route into a 26-mile street party. www.marinemarathon.com
- Late Oct
A solemn ceremony with military bands, in honor of the country’s war dead. Ceremonies are also held at the Vietnam Veterans Memorial, Mount Vernon (1-703 780 2000) and the US Navy Memorial.
www.arlingtoncemetery.org. Transport: Arlington Cemetery Metro.
- Arlington National Cemetery, Memorial Drive, Arlington Drive, VA
- 11am Veterans’ Day (Nov 11)