WASHINGTON — Happy Juneteenth and Father's Day from all of us at WUSA9! It's a long weekend for many and the newest federal holiday represents African American freedom from slavery.
It's a wonderful weekend to spend some time with the father figures in your life, as well as dig into your own heritage or learn more about African American culture. Juneteenth is a prime opportunity to give earnest respect and acknowledgment to the history that's played a large part in creating the country we know today.
Here are some events to help you do just that - along with others that may pique your interest in your precious free time!
Every week, WUSA9 is bringing nine local activities for you to help make the most out of your weekend. We'll give you three ideas (and, sometimes, a bonus item or two) in D.C., Maryland and Virginia and it's up to you to decide what you'll head out to.
Do you have any events on your calendar in the coming weekends that you think your neighbors should know about? Email the time, place and description to firstname.lastname@example.org.
Smithsonian National Museum of African American History and Culture: Juneteenth documentary, cuisine
- Admission: Free, registration required
Tip: Although most advanced passes for this museum are already booked, the free, same-day passes are still available and will be released beginning at 8:15 a.m. on the day you're trying go. Be sure to set a reminder - they sell-out fast!
Documentary: The Color of Care
- Friday, June 17, 2022, 7 p.m. - 10 p.m.
- 1400 Constitution Ave. NW, Washington, DC 20560
For those looking to commemorate the holiday in a space dedicated to Black history, NMAAHC is doing a host of events throughout the weekend. One unique session - showing how the past is still very much connected to the present - will feature the screening of a documentary, called The Color of Care, which chronicles how Black Americans have been historically subjected to systematically substandard healthcare. The film will spotlight how these inequities were exposed after the COVID-19 pandemic gripped the nation. Bring along your critical thinking cap, as a post-movie discussion is also on the agenda.
Special Juneteenth Menu
- Friday, June 17; Saturday, June 18 and Sunday, June 19
- 11 a.m. to 3 p.m.
- Sweet Home Café within the museum, on the bottom floor
If museum festivities cause you to work up an appetite - celebrate Juneteenth at Sweet Home Café, and savor all-new dishes inspired by time-honored tradition.
Features will include everything from BBQ chicken and ribs to red beans and rice, stewed tomato okra, cherry cobbler and red velvet cake. Plus, beyond getting a bit of culture for the holiday - you'll be tasting bites that earned a spot as a 2017 James Beard Foundation Awards semifinalist for best new restaurant.
Did you know? Even the building itself is a homage to African American history and provides an opportunity for learning.
The museum’s architecture is inspired by the three-tiered crowns used in Yoruban art from West Africa. Plus, when you see the structure wrapped in the striking metal design, know that it's a visual representation of the intricate ironwork crafted by enslaved African Americans in Louisiana, South Carolina, and elsewhere.
RELATED: Juneteenth #RepresentationMatters | Dad takes life stories, creates board game based on the joy of growing up in SE DC
Saturday, June 18, 1 p.m. - 4 p.m.
1801 Hamlin Street Northeast
Washington, DC, 20018
This is an all-ages celebration for LGBTQ+ kids and families! "Join us on the lawn in front of Woodridge Neighborhood Library for crafts, games, food, and community," organizers shared, adding that there will also be a family story time at 2:30 p.m. Note: masks will be required.
June 17, 2022 - February 6, 2023
Daily from 10 a.m. to 5 p.m.
1145 17th St NW, Washington, DC 20036
Admission: $20; cheaper for seniors, students and children
Another creative way to add learning about Black history to your calendar: the all-new immersive King Tut exhibit coming this weekend to the National Geographic Museum! Although the event is sold out for the weekend of Juneteenth, there's plenty of time to get a pass, as the experience will be around until next year. Plus, it never hurts to keep an eye out for cancellations! The event’s debut is a world-premiere and is meant to feel like a time-traveling experience, according to the museum, while engaging visitors with both sight and sound. The experience is a celebration of 100 years since the discovery of the famed boy-king’s Egyptian tomb, where he reigned more than 3,000 years ago.
- Friday, June 17 through Sunday, June 19; only 3-day tickets are available.
- Show starts at noon daily
- Independence Ave., Washington D.C.
- Admission: Passes start at $299.50 + fees, adding up to $350 (But every single D.C. public and charter high school senior gets one pass for free!)
RELATED: Bowser: All DC high school seniors get free ticket to 'Something in the Water' music festival
This massive, three-day festival taking over the National Mall is hosted by Pharrell Williams and has found a new home in the District after moving from its previous home, Virginia Beach. The fest will feature many artists including Pharrell, Tyler the Creator, SZA, Teyanna Taylor, Ashanti & Ja Rule, Usher, Lil Uzi Vert, Lil Baby and so many more.
Even if you're not heading to the festival, keep an eye out for the many road closures.
Sunday, June 19; doors open at 5 p.m., show begins at 7 p.m.
Union Stage - 40 Water St SW, Washington, DC 20024
"The Juneteenth Freedom Day Music Festival will celebrate OUR community and culture through music while also providing an affordable family-friendly event for everyone to participate," organizers said, providing a more affordable alternative to the D.C. Juneteenth music scene.
The show will highlight several local emerging artists and other talented acts right off the water on the Wharf.
Saturday, June 18th from 12 p.m. to 5 p.m.
Watkins Regional Park - 301 Watkins Park Dr, Upper Marlboro, MD 20774
This Juneteenth celebration will feature everything from live entertainment to art exhibits and activities and ways for young people to learn about African American history. Families can also expect food vendors to be on-site.
- Saturday, June 18th and Sunday, June 19th
- 11 a.m. to 6 p.m.
- Star Bright Farm - 2950 Garrett Road, White Hall, MD, 21161
- Admission : $15 in advance; $20 starting Friday, 6/17.
It's an event that both your nose and Instagram followers will celebrate: Lavender Fest is back again on this Maryland farm. It'll be a road trip for this unique event, but if you're looking for a reason to get away from the city, this could be the ticket!
"A day of food, music and fun - bring the whole family, leashed furry friends included, for a beautiful time out on the farm. The lavender will be in abundance and we will have fresh bunches for sale in our Barn Market! Both days will feature tractor rides and a walking tour of the farm with Farmer Peter," organizers shared.
Food vendors will also be on-site, along with beer and wine available for purchase.
- Sunday, June 19 from 5 p.m. to 7 p.m.
- 502 W Gordon St, Bel Air, MD 21014
- Admission: $15 for adults. Kids 12 and under are admitted free, but must be accompanied by an adult.
This is another event that will take a little bit of a hike from the D.C.-area with dad, but it may be worth it to check out an artist staff call an audience favorite!
Josh Christina returns to the museum and mansion to kick off this year's musical series with a special Father’s Day outdoor concert. You'll treat the guy in your life to sounds reminiscent of Jerry Lee Lewis, Elvis Presley and Elton John.
"Josh Christina will restore your confidence in the ability of young musicians to carry on the great tradition of rock’s pioneers," the museum says on its website.
Plus, you'll take in a bit of Maryland history at the beautiful estate. The historic Liriodendron mansion was built in 1898 and served as the summer residence of Dr. Howard Kelly, one of the four founding physicians of Johns Hopkins Hospital.
Be sure to bust out the picnic gear; chairs won't be provided. If you have limited mobility, you can contact the museum to arrange for special seating. Food and beverages will be available for purchase from The Rice Bowl International Grill and Independent Brewing Company.
- Friday, June 17 from 6 p.m. to 9 p.m.
Saturday, June 18 from 1 p.m. to 9 p.m.
- Waterfront Park, 1A Prince St., Alexandria, VA 22314
- Admission: Free
Locals and visitors are welcome to kick-off summer with the return of the Portside in Old Town Summer Festival. "This free festival features an array of live music, local craft beer from Port City Brewing Company and fun for the whole family on the Alexandria waterfront," said organizers. "New this year, the event merges with the 44th Annual Alexandria Jazz Fest on Friday evening to showcase jazz performances and readings by Alexandria poets. Saturday the festival continues with an eclectic musical lineup, local food, hands-on art and history activities and more."
- Sunday, June 19 from 2:30 p.m. to 4:30 p.m.
- Fran's Cake & Candy Supplies, 10927 Main Street, Fairfax, VA 22030
- Admission: $125 including entry for one child and one adult. $30 charge will apply for an additional child if desired.
If your dad loves golf - binging those baking Netflix shows - or you just want to see if you can inspire him to whip up more desserts on the regular, this unique Father's Day activity may be just what you're looking for!
Join Celebrity Pastry Chef Dawn Alston of Ravy Cakes, LLC Competitor on Food Network’s Wedding Cake Championship at this golf-themed cake decorating class for a father figure and their favorite little assistant.
"Each team will receive a 6-inch, 2-layered, crumb-coated cake. The teams will learn how to apply buttercream to the cake, piping techniques, how to tint buttercream, and how to create fondant accessories. Chef Dawn will share additional cake decorating techniques while the teams are building a super-cool Father’s Day Cake!"
Organizers say this event is appropriate for children ages 7-15 years old, along with their chosen adult. Plus, all items and tools needed to decorate will be provided for use during the workshop. Teams will also receive a box to take their cake home in.
The Annual Juneteenth Parade in Dumfries is kicking off this weekend and invites everyone to join in to honor the great dads who uplift the community and the history that's led us to where we are today.
"We will be walking along Cameron Street from Dumfries United Methodist Church, and ending our parade at the Dumfries Slave Cemetery where we will hold a vigil in honor of the ancestors," organizers detail. "The march will be followed by a jubilee in Merchant Park, where we will have a program honoring the fathers! Participants will enjoy music, dancing, fellowship, celebrate freedom and have time for reflection."
Be sure to bring along a blanket and lawn chairs for the jubilee in Merchant Park, and wear your comfy shoes. A food truck will be on-site for purchase, but feel free to bring your own Juneteenth delicacies as well.
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