Your Spring 2023 DC and Arlington Bucket List

Your Spring 2023 DC and Arlington Bucket List

You can hear the birds chirping. The weather is warm, and the canopy is beginning to green again. Finally. It’s spring, which is the best season in the DC area. From classics like the Cherry Blossom Festival to movies, sports and art, here are the best ways to celebrate spring in Arlington & DC.

National Cherry Blossom Festival (Until April 16th)

Here’s the most obvious answer: the National Cherry Blossom Festival (April 16). DC’s botanical pride and joy, the cherry blossoms at the Tidal Basin near the National Mall are in full bloom and boast a sea of beautiful white and pink flowers that draw in thousands of visitors each year.

The blossoms were a 1912 gift from the mayor of Tokyo at the time, and have been celebrated almost every year since with a parade and several events in the area. Despite the masses of tourists from across the nation, the blossoms are gorgeous, and absolutely worth the trip.

The unusually (but increasingly common) warm winter weather spelled out an early peak (March 22-25), but that doesn’t mean that you can’t enjoy the National Cherry Blossom Festival at the Tidal Basin in DC until April 16. Additionally, the National Cherry Blossom Festival Parade will take place in Downtown DC on April 15 and is free to the public along Constitution Ave from 9th St to 15th St.

Filmfest DC (April 19-30)

The event I’m most excited for this spring is the Washington DC International Film Festival, also known as Filmfest DC. Keep in mind that when they say ‘international,’ they mean it. Now in its 37th iteration, the 12-day festival will showcase 65 films from more than 30 countries around the world. Filmfest DC focuses on themes of justice, immigration, and culture. The festival shines light on many movies which might not otherwise be shown in DC area theaters.

Filmfest DC will feature movies like Revoir Paris, which follows a young woman as she recounts the night she survived a terrorist attack, or Chile ‘76, which examines the Pinochet regime through the lens of an upper-middle-class woman looking after a man who has been persecuted.

Tickets are available March 31st. The movies are shown at Landmark’s E Street Cinema though in previous years, some viewings of the films have been held at the Wharf in Southwest DC, the MLK memorial, and the National Gallery of Art. Tickets to most shows cost $13.

Arlington Festival of the Arts (April 29-30)

Each spring since 2014, the Arlington Festival of the Arts has showcased local art & artists from around the county. It is a fantastic chance to buy local art, or simply check out what is being created by Arlington’s art community. The festival will feature painting, photography, jewelry, and poetry for exhibit and sale. This fair is one in part of a national network of festivals, and is sponsored by the Museum of Contemporary Art in Arlington.

This year, the festival will take place on the last weekend of April from 10am to 5:30pm both Saturday and Sunday. Entry is free. The festival will take place in the heart of Clarendon at the intersection of N Highland St and Washington Blvd next to the Church at Clarendon.

The DC Defenders Final Home Game (April 16)

Let’s face it. The Nationals sold their team. The Capitals are sixth in their division. DC United has a losing record, and the Commanders did too. The DC sports teams suck right now, and they have for the past few years. Except the Defenders. DC’s second most famous (and most successful) football team is currently undefeated with a record of 6-0.

Now, if you aren’t already a DC Defenders super-fan (though every DMV resident should be one), here is what you need to know: The Defenders are one of eight teams in the XFL, a minor league football team in the midst of its first full season. They have beat teams from Seattle, St. Louis, Las Vegas and Houston.

Their final and only remaining home game will be played at Audi Field (where DC United plays) against the Arlington Renegades –that’s the Arlington in Texas, not Virginia– on April 16th. Tickets currently cost $30 at the cheapest. It’s the perfect Sunday afternoon activity.

Last Chance to see Yayoi Kusama: One With Eternity (Until July 16th)

Yayoi Kusama is one of, if not the most successful living artists. Known for her use of polka dots in art, Kusama immigrated to the US in her late 20s, and has been exhibiting her work here ever since. She has been creating visionary artwork for nearly 70 years, and is famous for her infinity rooms, which use mirrors to create an eternal replication of her art.

The 94-year-old artist’s infinity rooms, as well as two of her other works have been on display at the Smithsonian’s Hirshhorn Museum for the past year in an exhibit titled One With Eternity. The exhibit comes to a close in just three months. If you have not already seen the exhibit, this should be at the top of your list this spring.

The exhibit is open from 10am to 5:30pm every day. The Smithsonian drops free next-day timed passes online daily at noon, and they sell out quickly, so it is important to reserve them quickly.

Story continues below advertisement
Leave a comment
More to Discover
About the Contributor
Elijah Dale
Elijah Dale, Head Editor
Elijah is a senior heading into his fourth year with The Sentry and first as Head Editor. He loves to tell you the whowhatwherewhywhenandhow, especially if there’s an investigative story behind it all. Elijah is obsessed with local urban policy, so if he’s probably reading irrelevant 200-page county budget plans or transcribing interviews. Otherwise, you might find Elijah at a local rock climbing gym, the philosophy section at a used bookstore or working at a farmer’s market. Elijah is more than excited for another year on staff!

Comments (0)

All Sort: Newest

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *