Nat Geo Nights
The National Geographic Museum opens in the evening for special programming on the third Thursday of each summer month. The activities for guests include a happy hour featuring trivia, music, food and drinks, followed by talks with National Geographic scientists, conservationists and storytellers, known as National Geographic Explorers. Nat Geo Nights kicked off May 17 with a conversation with Steve Ramirez, Jedidah Isler and David Moinina Sengeh focusing on “The Science of Genius.” The happy hour begins at 5:30 p.m., with the talks starting at 6:30 p.m. and lasting one hour. Tickets will set attendees back $20 and include free admission to the National Geographic Museum at 1145 17th St. NW for the rest of the month.
Represent: Hip-Hop Photography
“Represent: Hip-Hop Photography” at the National Museum of African American History and Culture draws inspiration from the four fundamental elements of hip-hop culture: DJing, emceeing, break dancing and graffiti. The exhibit showcases images from the Eyejammie Hip Hop Photography Collection and explores how a number of political and social factors influenced the genre throughout the 1990s and its development into a cultural tour de force, according to the Smithsonian website. “Represent: Hip-Hop and Photography” is on display until May 3, 2019, and is on the museum’s second floor. The museum, located at 1400 Constitution Ave. NW, is free of charge and open 10 a.m. to 5:30 p.m. daily.
Jazz in the Garden Concert Series
Beginning May 18, the National Gallery of Art will present performances from a variety of jazz musicians as part of its 2018 Jazz in the Garden series. This year’s lineup features a diverse collection of styles, including funk, blues, ska, Latin and hip-hop. Musicians are set to include the Michael Thomas Quintet on June 15, Black Masala on July 6, 3Divas on Aug. 17 and Speakers of the House on Aug. 24. Performances begin every Friday at 5:30 p.m. in the museum’s breathtaking Sculpture Garden. While enjoying the free concert, visitors can satisfy their hunger with chicken tacos, Argentinian sausages and more delicacies offered at the outdoor grill in addition to the typical menu offerings indoors at the museum’s Pavilion Café. The National Gallery of Art Sculpture Garden is located on Constitution Avenue between 3rd and 9th streets NW.
Kenilworth Aquatic Gardens
Thousands of water plants, lotuses, bamboo, flowers and more grow along the Anacostia River in Southeast Washington, D.C. Established by a 1926 act of Congress, the Kenilworth Aquatic Gardens provide entertainment for a plethora of nature lovers. Visitors can say hello to the turtles and frogs that call the ponds home, take a hike on the 0.7-mile trail or enjoy birdwatching.
The park is open from 8 a.m. to 4 p.m. with free admission. Ranger-guided tours are available Monday through Friday at 10 a.m., 1:30 p.m. and 2:30 p.m. The park is located at 1900 Anacostia Ave. SE and is Metro-accessible via the Deanwood Station on the Orange line.
Alexander Hamilton’s American Revolution
Currently on display at the Anderson House, “Alexander Hamilton’s American Revolution” tells the story of Alexander Hamilton, a founding father who helped shape the U.S. government. The exhibition features almost 40 manuscripts, rare books, art and artifacts — including several on loan from Georgetown University.
The museum, owned and operated by the Society of the Cincinnati, is open Tuesday through Saturday from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. and Sunday from 12 p.m. to 4 p.m. The Anderson House is located along Embassy Row in Dupont Circle at 2118 Massachusetts Ave. NW and is free to attend.
After Henrietta Lacks developed cervical cancer at age 31, her cancer’s cells became the source of the world’s first immortalized cell line, a group of cells that can divide indefinitely. Her cells, called HeLa cells, have since facilitated biological research and contributed to 10,000 medical patents, including those related to polio and AIDS research.
The National Portrait Gallery is now paying tribute to Lacks with a 2017 portrait by Kadir Nelson, an American illustrator and artist. The oil-on-linen painting depicts Lacks wearing a cell-inspired print against a “Flower of Life” wallpaper. The portrait is on display until Nov. 4, 2018, at the gallery, which is located at 8th and F streets NW and is open from 11:30 a.m. to 7 p.m. daily. Admission to the National Portrait Gallery is free.
World on the Horizon: Swahili Arts Across the Indian Ocean
“World on the Horizon,” a visual arts exhibition organized by the Krannert Art Museum at the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign, explores how complex migrations, empires and travel have influenced Swahili artwork. The exhibition compares the artistic motifs of east African coastal communities by bringing together nearly 200 pieces of art from Kenya, Germany, the United States, Oman and the Netherlands to D.C.
The exhibit is on display at the National Museum of African Art, located at 950 Independence Ave. SW, until Sept. 3, 2018. Admission to the National Museum of African Art is free.