Thursday, May 9, 2024

Get Out! It's EU Open House Day on Saturday, May 11, 10AM - 4PM

by Peggy Robin

On Saturday, May 11, from 10 AM to 4 PM, the European Union and its Embassies will open their doors to the public for a day of culture, food, music, and more. No registration, tickets, or passport required!

This event falls every year on the first Saturday after Europe Day on May 9. This date marks the signing of the Schuman Declaration on May 9, 1950, which established the European Coal and Steel Community, a multinational entity that would eventually become the European Union as we know it today.

We celebrate Europe Day by opening our doors to the public so that Americans can catch a glimpse of the European cultures that make up the European Union. Normally you have to cross the Atlantic to visit the EU, but at Open House, you just have to cross the street!

Opening page of website:

Plan your route on Google Maps:

Embassies and Activities:

Austria & Slovakia
Two Countries – One River: Discover Austria and Slovakia, connected by the River Danube. Austria and Slovakia are neighboring countries in Europe and embassies in D.C. We will proudly present our culture, beautiful sights, famous music, as well as products. Learn about both countries, participate in a quiz to win prizes, and enjoy traditional food and drinks!

Step into the Embassy of Bulgaria for a cosmic journey through our space exhibition, featuring Earth views captured by satellites. Enjoy traditional cuisine, marvel at Shevitza embroidery, and indulge in the presentation of Bulgarian essential oils. Experience the vibrant culture with live music and dancing, uplifting spirits throughout the day!

Welcome to a country of rich cultural heritage and unique natural beauty, a gastronomic hub of both the Mediterranean and Central Europe, and take a stroll down a path teeming with historical memorabilia and sensory pleasures, the birthplace of Nikola Tesla, the neck tie, and the parachute.

Discover Cyprus — an island rich in history and culture, full of wonderful experiences just waiting to be enjoyed. Head to the Embassy of Cyprus to experience fun and hospitality — a day of knowledge, culture, and fun! Cyprus: a fusion of experiences!

Celebrate the year of Czech music through the life of Bedřich Smetana! Enjoy a folk fashion presentation, live music, a dog show, an exhibition, bounce house, beer, and food! Commemorate the 20th anniversary of Czechia in the EU and the 25th anniversary of Czechia in NATO.

Visit the Embassy of Denmark to learn about Danish design and architecture while touring the Ambassador’s Residence. Ask our colleagues about their work enhancing Danish green solutions in the United States, learn about our defence collaboration, Danish culture, language, and democracy – and taste delicious Danish beer and food!

Visit our 120-year-old building on Embassy Row — designed by Marsh & Peter Architects — which reopens after a two-year restoration! It combines authentic American architecture with modern, light-filled Nordic interiors and Estonian contemporary art specifically commissioned for the embassy.

European Union
At the EU Delegation, you will learn all about what Europe is doing to create a more sustainable home, from fashion to food. Also, catch up with the latest on the European Parliament Elections, test your skills at EU geography, and bring a spare piece of clothing to partake in a clothing swap!

France & Germany
Two countries, one venue, zero jet lag! The French Embassy’s Maison Française showcases the best of France AND Germany at this year’s EU Open House. Enjoy food, music, culture, and more in a family-friendly atmosphere with a special highlight on the Paris 2024 Olympic and Paralympic Games.

Join us at the Embassy of Greece to celebrate Europe Day by enjoying Greek music, take part in Greek dance and language workshops, and view a photo exhibition featuring some of Greece’s hidden gems.

Experience the Vizsla and Puli Hungarian breed dog show, and learn folk dancing with a live band! Come hungry to the authentic gulyás and wine bar, master the Rubik's cube with a tutorial. All is possible at the Embassy of Hungary!

Visit the Residence of Ireland to get a taste of all things Irish. Be entertained by performances from Irish dancers and traditional music, try your luck speaking Irish and playing Irish football, and learn about opportunities to explore Irish culture in D.C. and by visiting our shores!

Explore the enchanting world of Italy and immerse yourself in Italian culture and language. Bring the kids for some outdoor fun and indulge in scrumptious pizza, ice cream, and coffee! And don't forget to view the wonderful exhibition on photojournalism and the "Made in Italy" cars and motorcycles!

Experience the charm of Latvia at the historic Barney Studio House! Delve into business and study opportunities while tasting food produced by Latvian companies — all while enjoying performances of Latvian folk singers and dancers as you learn about Latvian history and tourism!

Come celebrate the 100th anniversary of the Embassy of Lithuania and 20th anniversary of Lithuania in the EU and NATO! Learn about our historic building,  Lithuanian music and dance, win a prize at our quiz, try some Lithuanian sweets, and much more!

Experience Luxembourg-U.S. relations then and now through emigration and a vivid exchange between their peoples. Peek inside the magnificent Embassy building, while experiencing Luxembourg City in 1957 through the eyes of an American family.

Netherlands & Belgium
When neighbors are best friends, they throw a party together! Join the Netherlands and Belgium for a special European celebration with free waffles, fries, and more yummy treats, plus refreshing drinks, outdoor games, an interactive light experience, and a dance to the rhythm of DJ music with the Smurfs.

Unlock the wonders of science and immerse yourself in the legacy of Maria Skłodowska-Curie at the Embassy of Poland! From a spectacular fashion show and captivating chemical workshops to inspiring stories of discovery, non-stop concerts, and molecular cuisine, don't miss the chance to explore the intersection of science and culture!

You can’t skip Portugal! Come and enjoy unique Portuguese dances, art, delicious food, drinks, and more! Meanwhile, get the chance to win free trips to Portugal, courtesy of TAP Air Portugal and SATA. Come visit!

Visit Romania by joining us at the Embassy! You will see one of the finest examples of the Beaux-Arts style of architecture, plus discover our traditions and culture. Through dances, exhibitions, and samplings, you can also learn about traditional Romanian performances, costumes, and dishes!

Visit the Embassy of Slovenia on May 11 for a day of lively Slovenian folk music, dance, mouthwatering Carniola sausage/klobasa, and delicious handmade potica! And this year, we're bringing a group of Kurenti — the traditional Slovenian carnival mascots — to amp up the fun! #SLOinUSA

At the Spanish Cultural Center, you’ll be able to try a wide variety of Spanish foods, enjoy Spanish graphic design, and listen to the greatest hits of Spanish music!

Ukraine (Partner Venue)
Experience the vibrant culture of Ukraine! Stop by Ukraine House to discover Ukrainian music and musical instruments, explore the art of making traditional necklaces and paintings, witness unforgettable performances by Ukrainian folk dancers, and try your hand at making mouthwatering Ukrainian dumplings, Varenyky. 

View photos from the 2023 edition of EU Open House!

The "Get Out!" event of the week is posted on the Cleveland Park Listserv and on All Life Is Local on Thursdays.

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