Enjoy These Pre-Valentine’s Day Events
Despite a cold start Friday, the weather this weekend should be mild enough to get out and do something. Here are some ideas for your pre-Valentine’s Day weekend.
Metro’s SafeTrack Surge 12 begins Saturday and runs through Feb. 28, closing down the blue line completely and the Arlington Cemetery station will be closed, but free shuttle buses will operate between Pentagon and the cemetery. Red Line trains single track between NoMa-Gallaudet and Rhode Island Avenue on Saturday morning and between Medical Center and Grosvenor all weekend. Trains will operate every 20 minutes from 7 a.m.-noon Saturday then every 15 minutes thereafter. Silver Line trains will single track between Addison Road and Largo Town Center and run every 20 minutes. Yellow Line trains will single track between Pentagon City and L’Enfant Plaza and operate with Rush+ service every 20 minutes between Huntington and Mount Vernon Square ONLY. Orange and Green Line trains will operate on regular weekend schedules.
Explore! With the National Portrait Gallery
In partnership with Explore! Children’s Museum of Washington, D.C., the National Portrait Gallery has opened Explore! With the National Portrait Gallery, its first-ever space dedicated to children. Kids can experiment with portraiture, trace each other’s silhouettes, strike poses for a video art piece and play with expression and emotion with illustrated blocks. Kids from 18 months old to 8 years old (accompanied by an adult) are the intended audience for this new, cutting-edge installation.
Tuesday through Sunday from 11:30 a.m.-6 p.m. at the National Portrait Gallery, Eighth and F Streets NW. Admission is FREE!
Comet, Lunar Eclipse and Full Moon
Turn Friday night into a cosmic experience – a full moon, lunar eclipse and the chance to see a pale green comet as it streaks by Earth. This month’s so-called Snow Moon will pass through Earth’s outer shadow Friday evening. As it is shaded from the sun’s light, it will turn varying shades of gray. By the middle of the eclipse, about 7:44 p.m., the northern third of the moon will be noticeably darker gray. But let the kids stay up late, because Comet 45P/Honda-Mrkos-Pajdusakova makes its closest approach to Earth at 10:30 p.m. The greenish comet will be visible by telescope and binoculars, but not to the naked eye.
Feb. 10 starting about 5:30 p.m. in the night sky. Admission is FREE!
Oscar Nominated Short Films
This is your chance to watch all the animated, live-action and documentary shorts up for Academy Awards, including Piper, the entry from Pixar (always the one to beat). You can take in one category right after another, or see them all over the course of a few days if you are a wimp. Note to parents: The animated Pear Cider and Cigarettes isn’t appropriate for kids, but they stuck it at the end so you can leave early.
Feb. 10-12 with animated shorts at 1:45 and 7:15 p.m. with a 10:15 a.m. screening on Saturday and Sunday and live-action shorts at 12:15, 4 and 9:30 p.m. with a 10:45 a.m. showing Saturday and Sunday at Landmark E Street Cinema, 555 11th St. NW. Documentary shorts will be shown at 1:30, 4:45 and 8 p.m. with a 10:15 a.m. screening Saturday and Sunday at Landmark West End Cinema, 2301 M St. NW. Tickets are $9-$12.
D.C. Shorts Wins!
If you would like to see some short films that didn’t quite get the Academy’s nod, head to D.C. Shorts Wins! Divided into two showcases presented back to back, the event highlights some of the films from D.C. Shorts’ 2016 festival, all of which won either jury or audience choice awards including Rated about a woman who must find courage to own up to her behavior when she wakes up to find every adult has received a Yelp-like star rating floating over their head and The Chop, a comedy about a kosher butcher who, after losing his job, pretends to be a Muslim to get work at a halal butcher shop.
Feb. 10 at 7 and 9 p.m. at Miracle Theatre, 535 Eighth St. NW. Tickets are $15 per showcase or $25 for both.
Selfie: Me, Myself and Us
Do selfies represent the downfall of our self-absorbed culture? Are we drowning our deep selves in a shallow, mesmerizing pool of our own digital reflections? Selfie: Me, Myself and Us features work by eight local artists who examine our cultural obsession with selfies and our narcissistic desire to record and manipulate digital representations of ourselves. People mold their digital identities through selfies, carefully constructing alternate worlds where appearance is more important than reality. Artists have been engaging in this same act of self-portraiture for thousands of years, since paint first appeared on cave walls. In this display, the Sparkplug Collective explores concepts of identity, transformation and personal deception through painting, sculpture, mixed media, photography and a site-specific performance.
Opening reception on Feb. 10 from 6-8 p.m. On display Wednesdays through Saturdays from Feb. 11-Mar. 11 from noon-6 p.m. at Flashpoint Gallery, 916 G St. NW. Admission is FREE!
Valentine’s Day Card Workshop
The National Postal Museum celebrates Valentine’s Day with this special Valentine’s Day Card Workshop that the entire family can enjoy. The free event will feature papers, vintage stamps from all over the world and plenty of supplies for you and your loved ones to create your unique valentines. You can also stop by the museum’s stamp store for a National Postal Museum postmark after you create your cards! All ages welcome and no registration is required.
Feb. 11 from 11 a.m.-4 p.m. at the National Postal Museum, 2 Massachusetts Ave. NE. Admission is FREE!
Cupid’s Undie Run
Cupid’s Undie Run is a “brief” fun-run that takes place in the middle of a BIG party. That’s right: party, run (a mile-ish at your own pace) around Franklin Square and party some more. Last year the national event helped raise more than $3.5 million for the Children’s Tumor Foundation. If you’re 21 or older, strut your stuff in skimpy attire as part of a team or solo, and enjoy pre- and post-run fun, including an awards ceremony at 2:15 p.m. and an earned open bar (raise at least $250). The actual run is at 3 p.m.
Feb. 11 starting at 1 p.m. at The Park at 14th, 920 14th St. NW. Registration is $35 in advance.
Sadie Hawkins RomDance Night
Love is in the air and what better way to celebrate than with music and dancing. So ladies, make your choice and invite that special person to join you for a night of fun, music and dancing at Silent Dance Society’s Sadie Hawkins RomDance Night. Dance to your own beat with three different live DJs. The wireless headphones let you choose between three live music channels offering everything from the old school groove to Top 40 and an electronic dance mix.
Feb. 11 from 8 p.m.-midnight at the Embassy Row Hotel, 2015 Massachusetts Ave. NW. Tickets, which include headset rental, are $16 in advance and $20 at the door.
Step Afrika! Step Xplosion
During the third annual Step Afrika! Step Xplosion, the step-dance company and six regional step teams including the Howard University-affiliated Alpha Phi Alpha Fraternity Beta Chapter and Dem Raider Boyz Step Squad and the Lady Raiders (a youth squad from Greenbelt) celebrate Black History Month with a percussion-driven performance that includes storytelling and songs.
Feb. 12 at 4 p.m. at the Music Center at Strathmore, 5301 Tuckerman Lane, North Bethesda. Tickets are $35-$75.
D.C. Independent Film Festival
The D.C. Independent Film Festival is D.C.’s longest-running independent film festival. This year it presents another diverse body of narrative features, documentaries, shorts, student films and animated works. Filmmakers can also nerd out at informative seminars and workshops. With dozens of entries, the festival will premiere films from all over the world.
Feb. 15-20 at various times at the Naval Heritage Center, 701 Pennsylvania Ave. NW and the Miracle Theater Church, 535 Eighth St. SE. Individual tickets are $7-$12 online or at the door. Seminar admission is $16. All-day weekend passes are $40.
Editor-in-Chief Mark Heckathorn is a journalist, movie buff and foodie. He oversees DC on Heels editorial operations as well as strategic planning and staff development. Reach him with story ideas or suggestions at dcoheditor (at) gmail (dot) com.