The Washington Post

Got Plans: Advice from the Going Out Guide

Jun 05, 2014

Every Thursday, the Going Out Guide staff discusses concerts, happy hours, cheap date ideas, weekend getaways, new exhibits and other ways to have fun in the Washington D.C. area.

Hi everyone. It's a big weekend, packed with everything from Capital Pride to the Rosslyn Film Festival. (Here's a cheat sheet to help you get started in planning.)

Have you been to Lyman's Tavern? Did you listen to the summer playlist DJ Rekha made for us ahead of her Asia After Dark appearance?

We're ready to talk about whatever you want.

I'd love to find a fun place to watch the Belmont Stakes Saturday night in D.C. or Arlington. Are there any bars or restaurants planning to feature it?

If you're looking to cheer California Chrome on to victory in the Triple Crown, I know Jack Rose will be showing the race on its rooftop deck (because a mint julep ALWAYS beats a Belmont Breeze). The Brixton will also be showing the race on its roof and second-floor lounge, as it did for the Derby and the Preakness, with drink specials and other deals.

Hey GoGs - aside from T Roosevelt park...suggestions for some dog friendly outdoor options for Saturday?

Man, I see so many dogs at Yards Park that I feel compelled to recommend it. (Even saw a few at the splash park next to Park Tavern last time I was over there.)

If you want to bring you dog our for happy hour, the Argonaut hosts a Saturday afternoon Doggy Happy Hour from noon to five p.m. 

Fritz recently wrote about the afternoon party with Keenan and Smudge. Could someone in their 40's go to this and feel comfortable or does it skew real young?

One of the things I love about Keenan and Smudge's Sunday rooftop party at Marvin is that the crowd runs the gamut. I think the sweet spot there is over 30; I'm in my 30s, and while there were folks there who were obviously older and younger than me, I don't think anyone cared at all. (Besides,when they're spinning golden-age hip-hop, being older has its advantages.)

My husband and I would love to bring our 4-year-old daughter to the Pride Parade on Sat. We have never been to one in DC. We went to one on Pittsburgh when she was an infant. She loves parades and we'd like to have her see people different from her straight, white family. But a couple of (childfree) people who have attended told me the DC Parade gets pretty raunchy and it's not a good idea. Any thoughts from the group? Should we stick to the festival?

A few things you can expect to see at the pride parade: Men in their skivvies, women in pasties, some leather daddy/bondage gear, and people will definitely be handing out condoms. If you're not ready for your four-year-old to see any of the above, you might want to stick to the festival instead, where there are plenty of performances and just as much glitter.

Are there any golden age weekly/monthly hip-hop nights being spun around town?

There are a few, though they come and go, and most mix in some old-school R&B and such. Reminisce, on the first Saturday of the month at Liv, is a favorite, with Supa Qool DJ Quartermaine. I also like the Grits and Gravy nights at Jin, though they tend to be a little '80s-focused. DJ Oso Fresh at Lounge of III spins a lot of old-school and golden age cuts during his Friday night spots at Lounge of III, and he's a fixture of the semi-regular Hip-Hop Bar Crawl. (Waiting to hear when the next one of those is coming up.)

For dog friendly parks - National Arboretum and Kennelworth Gardens are two of my favorite spots to take my pup. Also the monuments in the early morning or evening when not to warm. Screen on the Green - am I the only really disappointed by the selection this year? A group of 20 or so go every year but we all kind of shrugged and decided to skip it this year as nothing was inspiring. Any other suggestions as I couldn't get the links on the map to work? Thanks!

Wait, you're not excited about "The Karate Kid" on the National Mall? Are you nuts?

As far as other outdoor movie series, I usually like going to Rosslyn's Friday night outdoor films, but I think selections are kind of week this year. ("Movies about the workplace" seems like a weird theme to begin with.) I will probably go for "Empire Records," though.

Also, I find it interesting that "Top Gun" is featured at both NoMa Summer Screen (Aug. 6) and Crystal City's plane-themed Crystal Screen (June 30). Guess some people can't get enough Maverick.

To be utterly predictable, I think it's awesome that National Harbor is doing old Bond films on Sundays from Aug. 10-31. Probably worth taking the water taxi over for.

Oh, and thanks for the dog tips!

Hi Everyone, Great chat! I like all kinds of men but I have a particular fondness for two groups of men: highly educated Spanish speaking/Latin American men and Eastern Europeans. What are the best relatively non-sleazy places to meet such gentlemen?

Ha, so one thing that has worked for a friend of mine with similar interests is to make friends with people who go to Johns Hopkins SAIS, where there are many international graduate students. Anyone know where the SAIS students are hanging out these days? You should definitely try attending embassy receptions for the country of your choosing. Many of these events are open to the public and are pretty cool even without the chance to meet handsome foreign men -- think photography exhibitions at the Art Museum of the Americas or tango hosted by the embassy of Argentina. A few events are listed here

Chatters, do you know of any other bars where Latin & European men congregate?

Hi Fritz - is there anywhere in montgomery county to watch Gaelic Football? Anywhere near Wheaton would be ideal or do I need to head to Fado?

I don't know the schedule, so call ahead, but I've watched Gaelic football at Flanagan's Harp and Fiddle in Bethesda and seen it on the schedule at the Limerick Pub in Wheaton.


You guys always recommend this for walking, but how do you get there? (BTW, I grew up in NoVa and had never heard of this place until I started reading your chat a few years ago.)

I love Roosevelt Island -- I once got lost there when I was a kid -- but it can be hard to figure out access for a first-timer. If you're driving, the only way to access the parking lot is from the northbound lanes of the GW Parkway, after the Memorial Bridge exits. (It's signed.) 

If you're coming on foot or bike, the access point is from the Mount Vernon Trail, which is downstream from the Key Bridge. You cross 66 and walk down the trail until you see the bridge. (Sorry, it's one of those "It's easy to see when you're there" kind of things. Here's a .pdf map from the National Park Service showing the location.)

Ivy & Coney in Shaw will be playing the Belmont followed by Game 2 of NHL Playoffs. Free Peanuts to anyone who mentions the Gurus!

We're not worth free Malort shots? That's cold. (Especially because peanuts are already free.)

Hi! I'll be visiting National Harbor for the first time Sunday afternoon. I know it has garage parking - is finding a spot going to be a major headache?

There are multiple garages, actually, and finding street parking, which is cheaper than garage parking, is honestly the bigger headache. (The last time I drove there, I think I circled for 10 minutes stubbornly trying to find a meter, gave up, and had a space five minutes after pulling into a garage near the Gaylord.)

I am hosting a bridal shower/bachelorette weekend for 12-15 women in July. This is not a tiara wearing, tank top wearing crowd. The bride has only requested good food and lots of drinks. We are staying at the Westin at Thomas Circle. Do you have any suggestions for restaurants that can accomdate such a large group with dinner around $35/person? We have a reservation at Ping Pong Dim Sum in Dupont as a back up. I've called Le Diplomate but the starting price for a large group is $65/per person.

Soi 38, which just got a great first bite from Tom Sietsema, has a large kitchenside table that is, I think, big enough to accommodate your entire group. You could also try the Fainting Goat on U Street, Roofers Union in Adams Morgan, or see if you could reserve the very cool second floor dining area of Baby Wale.

GOGS, where is the closest place to DC where I can bet on the Derby? Laurel Park maybe? Is there off-track betting anywhere?

Rosecroft in Fort Washington is set up for OTB thoroughbred racing in addition to live harness racing. They're even throwing a special Belmont party on Saturday.

The poster mentioned watching Saturday night but the post time is 6:30-6:35 PM.

Yeah, I was assuming they just meant "late afternoon."

It's worth mentioning that if you're going to the Brixton, they're switching gears pretty quickly after the race: The British Embassy is sponsoring a post-Capital Pride Parade party there, beginning sometime after 7 p.m. (Plug: Check out our Capital Pride nightlife guide.)

GOGs, please help me! I have a friend coming to Alexandria for work, and he's free on Sunday afternoon/evening. I live near Baltimore, so I don't know what to do in DC/NoVa. I've been trying to find a wine festival, or some music (R&B/Jazz/Blues), theater or boat ride type of thing (weather permitting). He's been here before and done the usual Mall sites already. I thought about National Harbor, but I've never been, so what can we do there? Our ages average mid-40's, if that helps. Any other suggestions?

Theater-wise, if I were you, I'd jump on this offer for half-price tickets to Woolly Mammoth's "The Totalitarians," a comedy about the inanity of politics. Beforehand, get dinner and drinks at the Partisan down the block. Your friend could take the ferry from Alexandria to National Harbor, where there's an enormous new ferris wheel, but to be honest, you will find better restaurants in D.C. proper. But if waterfront views were part of the draw, I'd check out Osteria Morini near the Navy Yard instead.

I'm not seeing any wine events that weekend (unless you want to drive out to the Virginia wineries), but maybe you and your friend would be interested catching up over this unique tasting menu at Flight Wine Bar.

How do we pronounce Soi? Thanks.

Here's a link to an audio recording. Sort of like soy, but with a slightly longer vowel sound?

Okay, that's going to do it for us for today. Enjoy your weekend and we'll see you back here next week.


Post Points code is GG 0276. 

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The Going Out Guide
The Going Out Guide staff are the experts behind The Washington Post's Going Out Guide. They write about restaurants, bars, movies, the arts, special events and visitor attractions, and they're out every night to keep you on top of the D.C. entertainment scene.
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