Here's how to make the most of a fabulous May weekend — including some deals for Cinco de Mayo on Sunday.
Through May 5
The International Film Festival of D.C. has kicked off 11 days of film screenings across the District. The festival will show 80 films, representing 45 countries, according their website.
"Traveling While Black" is sure to be a highlight. The 3D, immersive virtual reality documentary brings you inside a booth at the iconic Ben's Chili Bowl for a conversation about race, travel and the now-famous Green Book.
"In Peak Bloom" at ARTECHOUSE
Through May 27
1238 Maryland Ave. SW
The larger-than-life main exhibit allows you to interact with a swirling cherry blossom cloud, while other rooms feature live plants that respond to your touch and augmented reality stories. Adult admission starts at $15.
Catharsis on the Mall
Friday, May 3 at 12 p.m. to Sunday, May 5 at 12 p.m.
Around the Washington Monument
Does the sight of a large burning structure make you feel better? Find out this weekend at the Catharsis on the Mall event, which the organizers call a vigil for spiritual healing.
Attendees can expect workshops, speakers, dancing until sunrise, and (most importantly) the Temple Burn, which will involve the incineration of a sanctuary sculpture a la Burning Man to encourage viewers to let go of their griefs, according to the event’s website. The event is free and open to all ages.
Old Town Cocktail Week
Through May 11
The first-ever Old Town Cocktail Week kicks off on Friday in Old Town Alexandria, Virginia. Organizers invite attendees to "Drink Up Old Town" at any of more than 20 events taking place at local historic sites, restaurants and boutiques throughout the week. There will be special tastings, cocktail seminars and more. Admission varies for each event.
Friday, May 3, 10 a.m. to 6 p.m. and Saturday, May 4, 10 am to 5 p.m.
Washington National Cathedral, 3101 Wisconsin Ave. NW
This weekend, take the family up to the Washington National Cathedral Flower Mart to celebrate the 80th anniversary of the event. All Hallows Guild hosts the market as a benefit for the cathedral's grounds and gardens, according to their website. Ride an antique carousel, explore the booths and take in an array of performances over the two days of events. The Flower Mart is part of the monthlong Passport D.C. cultural experience.
The Drive-In at Union Market
Union Market, 1309 5th St. NE
Union Market is kicking off their seventh season of drive-in film screenings on Friday. Once a month from now to October, you can catch classic films against the outside of the marketplace starting at sunset. The first film on the bill is crowd favorite "Dazed and Confused." There is a $15 fee for cars to park, but walk-ups are free. All films will have closed captions.
Around the World Embassy Tour
Saturday, May 4, 10 am to 5 p.m.
Also part of Passport D.C., the Around the World Embassy Tour will have dozens of D.C. embassies opening their doors to share their cultures' food, art, dance, music and more. All participating embassies are open from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. unless otherwise stated; admission is free.
POW! WOW! DC Kickoff Festival
12 to 6 p.m.
Wunder Garten, 1101 First St. NE
D.C.'s favorite mural festival is back this spring with a new batch of artists from around the world ready to paint NoMa over. The 10-day list of events begins Friday with a walking tour leaving from Wunder Garten. There will be live art and a welcome by the event's organizer, Kelly Towles. The event is free.
Kingman Island Bluegrass & Folk Festival
12 to 8 p.m.
Kingman Island, 575 Oklahoma Ave. NE
The Kingman Island Bluegrass & Folk Festival was founded in 2010 to bring attendees to the underused spaces of Kingman and Heritage islands in the Anacostia River. Festival headliners include Dustbowl Revival, The Ballroom Thieves and Hackensaw Boys. Besides good food and music, the festival offers knowledge about the preservation and conservation of the park in which the festival is held. Proceeds will benefit Living Classrooms' educational programming and the maintenance of Kingman Island.
Running of the Chihuahuas
1 to 5 p.m.
District Pier at The Wharf, 101 District Square SW
Celebrate Cinco de Mayo in the greatest possible way by watching more than 100 chihuahuas race each other for a variety of prizes. There will also be a beer garden and a live DJ. The events proceeds will benefit Rural Dog Rescue.
Cinco de Mayo Deals
- El Bebe (99 M Street SE) is calling revelers from 11 a.m. to 10 p.m. on Sunday with $2 salsas, $5 snacks, $4 Tecate and Corona cans and $5 margaritas.
- Punch Bowl Social Arlington (4238 Wilson Blvd., Arlington, Virginia) will offer a $5 "El Macho," a margarita-type drink with tequila, muddled cucumber, cardamom syrup and fresh lime juice.
- Chuy's (various locations) will offer drink specials all weekend. On Sunday, they will have $1 floaters, $5 regular house margaritas and $5 queso or guacamole.
- El Rey (919 U St. NW) is offering an entire Cinco de Mayo experience complete with $4 Carnitas Tacos, margaritas and a live mariachi band. They'll be open for the holiday until their ice luge melts.