DC's Best Kept Secrets

A day off from work and a day spent catching up on paperwork and yard work turned out to be an amazing day indeed.

Spent the morning, toiling away in my home office, then by noon spending a couple of hours
shoveling dirt and rocks.

Then a swim at the Bolling pool (yes, my wrist is slowly getting back in shape) before I headed out to my familiar stomping grounds -- the National Mall to catch the Folklife Fest evening concert.  Catrin Finch, regarded as one of the world's best harp players, and Gimarron de Colombia were performing together.

It was also good to meetup with my colleague Sara as well as meet her friends, Mark and Merelin.

DC's best kept secret is no other than:

Then as I ran along the Mall, I stumbled upon "Jazz in the Garden" in front of the Sculpture Garden.  Bio Ritmo was performing their hot eclectic salsa and people were all around the wading pool dancing.

It is beyond belief that it took nearly seven years for me to discover this DC quintessential soiree.  For those who think that Paris has a cultural edge over Washington, I wouldn't disagree.  But I would so duly argue that Washingtonians know how to party and people watch as well.

At the Sculpture Garden there is bubbling glasses of sangria, wine, crab cakes and kebabs.  The music, jazz guitar or salsa is so soothing and so many people are smoozing, that the the whole aura rubs off on you.

After enjoying the concert, I ran towards the Capitol building to catch the rehearsal of the Capitol Fourth.

It was hosted by Jimmy Smits and I enjoyed watching Barry Manilow, Aretha Franklin and acclaimed classical pianist Andrew von Oeyen.  The finale included Tchaikovsky's "1812 Overture" featuring U.S. Army Herald Trumpets, "Old Guard" Fife and Drum Corps and live cannon fire.

If you want to watch the concert live, but may not want to brave the crowds on Independence Day, it's a good idea to watch the rehearsal the night before -- it is almost as good without the fireworks.

While there, I metup with some folks from Wales Cymru who were involved in organizing the events on the Mall.

Then I was off towards the grass and gravel to finally complete my run (after a fun-filled, eventful journey).

While I was heading home towards Anacostia, I stopped at Nats Field just in time to watch the fireworks.  The Nationals had lost a nail bitter to the Atlanta Braves, 9-8.  Sad for my Nats, but for consolation, my Braves were surging in a very tight race in the NL East.

I headed to the Bullpen to enjoy the free band and dancing crowds.  It's a festival park right across the street from the ballpark.  It's not fancy, but the music is nice and the fans are rowdy. I truly enjoyed the concert especially when the band sang some Michael Jackson tunes.  It's open after every home game

If you think the evening was over, think again.  My restless feet took me towards the Artomatic by the Navy Yard metro.

Had a wonderful time again especially watching Brazilian Samba.  Here I am with Zezeh and Katie.

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