Thursday, December 5, 2019

Get Out! The Events Column, December 6 - 12, 2019

Nutcracker Family Day at Smilthsonian American Art Museum
We wanted to share some events and activities that we thought would be of interest to list members. Have a great weekend -- and week beyond, too. If you know of an event that the 14,500+ members of the Cleveland Park Listserv should know about, please email us at events @ fastmail dot net.

Peggy Robin and Bill Adler
Publishers, Cleveland Park Listserv     

Friday, December 6 from 11 AM – 6:30 PM, The Second Annual Holiday Book Fair by the White House Historical Association. Since 1962, the White House Historical Association has produced award-winning books on many subjects related to the history of the President's House—from its architecture, gardens, fine and decorative arts to the presidents and first ladies who lived there over the years. We are pleased to invite you to meet the authors of these award-winning books at our Holiday Book Fair on Friday. Special features include: Thomas Jefferson portrayed by Bill Barker; drawing lessons with artist John Hutton; enter a raffle with the chance to win an original Hutton drawing; and special musical performances on a reproduction of President Theodore Roosevelt's #100,000 Steinway piano! For questions, contact books @ whha dot org. Free. More information at: 

Friday, December 6 at 5:30 PM, Holidays through History - Open Houses at 3 Historic House Museums. Celebrate the holidays at three historic houses -- Anderson House, Dumbarton House, and Woodrow Wilson House — at this annual yuletide pilgrimage. Stroll through the three festively decorated mansions and learn about historical Christmas traditions. Each site will feature a cocktail inspired by their period, as well as crafts and light refreshments. Reservations suggested. Tickets: $30 per person in advance; $35 at the door, available online at Dumbarton House is at 2715 Q St NW, Anderson House is at 2118 Massachusetts Ave NW, and the Woodrow Wilson House is at 2340 St St NW. More information:

Friday December 6 from  6 - 8 PM, Annual Tree Lighting at Cathedral Commons. Gather with friends and neighbors and enjoy a flurry of activities from 6 PM until the tree lighting at 8 PM. Cathedral Commons is creating a winter wonderland of fun during its 5th annual Holiday Tree Lighting event! Merry into the season with festive performances and food and drink from local restaurants. Roast s’mores, participate in crafts, and greet holiday characters as they roam throughout the night. Santa will also be joining us for free photos (pets too!). Free. At 3710 Newark St NW. More info: 

Saturday December 7 from 8:30 - 10:30 AM, “Breakfast with Santa.” The Metropolitan Police Department (Second District) invites you to join us for "Breakfast with Santa" at the Second District Station (Community Room), 3320 Idaho Avenue NW. Come out and enjoy a free, hot delicious breakfast with Santa and your Second District Police Officers. Seating is limited; you must RSVP: kyi.branch @ dc dot gov. 

Saturday December 7 at 9:30 AM, “Capital Crisis: The Civil War Defenses of Washington, July-August 1862,” presented The Rock Creek Civil War Roundtable (RCCWRT). National Park Service Ranger, Historian, and Military History Scholar Steve T. Phan will present a lecture on the evolution of the Defenses of Washington in response to the military situation pressing the Federal high command, War Department, and Lincoln Administration during the summer of 1862. A military history scholar of the Civil War era, Steve T. Phan has focused his research on military occupation, operational command, fortifications, and the Western Theater during the Civil War. Come join us and bring a friend. These presentations each month are free and open to the public. After each presentation, there is a most stimulating Q & A session. For additional information or inclement weather, you may call: Dana M. Dierkes, Chief of Interpretation, Education, and Outreach, National Park Service, Rock Creek Park, 202-895-6222 (office) 202-497-8526 (cell) or Patricia A. Tyson, RCCWRT Convener, 202-577-6956. At the Rock Creek Nature Center, 5200 Glover Road NW

Saturday, December 7 at 10 AM, Oral History Collaborative Coffee Chat. Join us, along with Humanities DC and The Historical Society of DC, for a Saturday morning coffee chat and tell us your idea for an oral history project! Funding available for oral history projects or for public humanities projects that use existing oral history collections. This session will provide information on: eligibility and how to apply. Prospective applicants can come to the workshop to discuss potential project designs or to simply gather information. The session is free and open to the public. For more information, please visit At the Cleveland Park Library, 3310 Connecticut Ave. NW,

Saturday, December 7 from 10 AM - 7 PM, Opening Day of ‘AURORA: The Spirit of Northern Lights. ARTECHOUSE brings the northern lights and the aurora borealis to the nation’s capital for this special holiday installation. The immersive exhibit will let you shape light and frost, accessing your winter superpowers as you encounter dancing skies and magical illuminations. Visitors will also learn of the technology behind this wonderful experience, which includes its own narrative featuring a stylized northern forest. When purchasing your tickets, make sure to use the code “AEF10” for 10% off your admission. This promotion benefits local students through the American Experience Foundation. Tickets Adult: $16 online ($20 onsite), Students, Seniors (65+) & Military ID-holders: $13 online ($15 onsite) Daytime Session Only, Children (Ages 2-14): $8 online ($10 onsite). Online tickets available at: The exhibit is on through Jan. 5, 2020 at ARTECHOUSE, 128 Maryland Avenue SW. More information:

Saturday, December 7 from 11:30 AM - 3 PM, The Nutcracker Ballet Family Day. Celebrate the holidays with SAAM and the Washington Ballet! Join acclaimed Artistic Director Julie Kent as she shares behind-the-scenes stories about how the ballet company puts on their annual performance of The Nutcracker, then enjoy watching dancers perform highlights from this charming Christmas classic. Get in the festive spirit by creating winter-themed crafts or going on a scavenger hunt, and indulge in a hot chocolate bar and other tasty treats for purchase from the Courtyard CafĂ©. Free. At Smithsonian American Art Museum (SAAM), Kogod Courtyard, 8th and F Street NW. More info: 

Saturday, December 7 from 6 - 9 PM, District Holiday Boat Parade. Each year, dozens of dazzling boats traverse the Potomac River from the waterfront in Alexandria, VA to the The Wharf. You can observe free of charge, and there are even holiday festivities on both sides of the river to enjoy beforehand for this year's parade. Prizes will be awarded to the most beautiful vessels, which begin their journey at 6 PM, and fireworks will cap off the parade at 8 PM. Free admission. The Wharf, 1100 Maine Avenue SW. More info:

Sunday, December 8 from 1 - 5 PM, Winter Show at Studio 4903. Meet local and guest artists and artisans at this annual event in a at Studio 4903, a fantastic art studio space between Tenleytown and Friendship Heights. This year we've got painters, potters, photographers, mixed media folks, jewelers and fab felt bags. Everything is hand made -- most of it in the studio.So come have some have a nibble and take this opportunity to meet and support local artists in a wonderful creative space. Free. Studio 4903 is at 4903 Wisconsin Ave. NW, 2nd Floor. No need to rsvp but if you would like to visit another time, please email Gayle Friedman, gaylefriedman1 @ gmail dot com for other hours when you can come by..

Sunday, December 8 at 4 PM, Holiday Vocals. Join us for music celebrating the holiday season performed by Jacqueline Neimat, an American lyric soprano. The concert will last approximately one hour. This is the final date in the fall American Music Series at Anderson House, which celebrates the history and variety of American music genres. Free. Anderson House (Society of the Cincinnati) is at Anderson House is at 2118 Massachusetts Ave NW. More information:   

Sunday, December 8 at 4 PM, Holiday Concert at Chevy Chase Presbyterian Church. The featured work will be "Das Neugeborne Kindelein" (the newborn child) by Dieterich Buxtehude. Buxtehude was a 17th Century Danish-German organist and composer. He is considered one of the most important composers in Germany of the mid-Baroque. His piece will include chorus, strings, and harpsichord. Other choral pieces will be presented, bells will ring, and the audience will have the opportunity to participate in choral singing. Free admission, no RSVPs needed, and a reception will follow the performance. At One Chevy Chase Circle NW.

Sunday, December 8 at 6 PM, Handel's "Messiah." All in the community are invited to hear the National Presbyterian Church Festival Choir, Soloists, and Orchestra perform Handel's "Messiah." This concert is open to the public and no tickets are required! A voluntary offering will be collected during the performance. There is ample free onsite parking for the concert and complimentary childcare for children under 4 with advanced RSVP to childcare @ nationalpres dot org. National Presbyterian Church is located at 4101 Nebraska Avenue NW, about a 10-minute walk from the AU/Tenleytown metro stop on the red line. More info:

Monday, December 9 at 12 noon, George Washington and His World. Students of professor Denver Brunsman, GW's Department of History, will share their findings after a semester of in-depth research about George Washington at Mount Vernon. Free; no reservations required. Bring your lunch and enjoy a cup of coffee on us. At The George Washington University Museum and The Textile Museum, 701 21 Street, NW. More info: 

Monday, December 9 at 5 PM, 2019 DC Statehood Holiday Party at the Wilson Building. Join Mayor Muriel Bowser, DC Council Chairman Phil Mendelson and the Council of the District of Columbia for the John A. Wilson Building Holiday Reception. Celebrate the holidays in the 51st State! The John Wilson Building is at 1350 Pennsylvania Avenue, NW. Register for free tickets at     

Tuesday, December 10 from 5:30 PM, Handi-hour. Looking for holiday gift ideas? Craft your own at our December Handi-hour. Choose from a variety of crafts, like cork photo holders and miniature wreaths. Enjoy beer from Denizens Brewing and live music from Mink’s Miracle Medicine while you get crafty. Tickets ($25) include two beers, a souvenir glass, crafting supplies, and light snacks - available for purchase at Must be 21 or older to attend and present a valid ID at the door for entry. At the Renwick Gallery, Rubenstein Grand Salon, Pennsylvania Avenue at 17th Street NW.

Tuesday December 10 at 7 PM, “ You Are What Your Grandparents Ate” - Author Talk by Judith Finlayson. Join us for a discussion with Judith Finlayson, who will discuss her book You Are What Your Grandparents Ate, a new exploration of nutrition, chronic disease and epigenetics. Finlayson will appear in conversation with Dr. Kent Thornburg, Professor of Medicine and Director of the Center for Developmental Health at the Knight Cardiovascular Institute, and Director of the Bob and Charlee Moore Institute for Nutrition & Wellness at Oregon Health & Science University in Portland, Oregon. Books will be available for signing at the event. Free. At the Tenley-Friendship Library, 4450 Wisconsin Ave. NW,   

Wednesday, December 11 at 7 PM, “Warriors with Words: How the Black Press and the Freedom Narratives Helped End Slavery.” Join author and lecturer C.R. Gibbs for a  presentation on “Warriors with Words: How the Black Press and the Freedom Narratives Helped End Slavery.” Free. At the Woodridge Library, 1801 Hamlin Street NE,  

Wednesday, December 11 at 7 PM, The Amazing, Eco-Friendly Tree Lighting. If you have ever secretly thought it’s a shame to cut down a live tree and haul it to a public plaza, where it’s stuck in a base and then festooned with lights, plastic baubles, tinsel, and tchotchkes, you will love this eco-friendly alternative! Come to the spot in Rock Creek Park where there’s a tall, stately evergreen growing in its native soil There’s nothing artificial dangling from its branches and yet you will see it transformed into the most spectacularly decorated Christmas tree ever. Through the use of image-projecting technology, when the switch is thrown at 7 PM, the tree will suddenly appear to be clothed from top to bottom in shimmering lights, glittering ornaments, and garlands of berries and beads, ribbons, bells, and bows. Yet nothing is actually touching the tree -- it’s all holographic artistry created on a computer: a spectacular 360 degree light and image show projected onto all the surfaces of the tree. And the images are not static but will change every ten minutes! Watch as the tree goes from its opening design of red, gold, blue and silver to a traditional Scottish Christmas tartan design in greens, yellows, and reds. Then watch it change again to a cool blue and white “Frozen” theme, followed by nine other creatively color-coordinated designs to complete the Twelve Trees of Christmas show. The tree lighting and show is free….but you must attend in your imagination, as this is the Weekly Fake Event.

Thursday, December 12 from 6 - 7:30 PM, Greetings From Outer Space. Explore the cosmos with us! Celebrate the 20th anniversary launch of the Chandra X-ray Observatory. Guest speakers from Astronomy on Tap DC will share Chandra's amazing origins and discoveries. Stick around for games, spectrum demonstrations and stargazing courtesy of the Phoebe Waterman Haas Observatory (telescopes included). Free. This event is recommended for ages 13+. At the Petworth Library, 4200 Kansas Ave. NW,       

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