- The Washington Times - Wednesday, April 25, 2007


Ready to blossom

Now in its 68th consecutive year, the Washington National Cathedral Flower Mart has become one of the top events for area garden enthusiasts. This year’s Flower Mart will feature a range of horticulture booths and more than 60 vendors selling plants, jewelry and other accessories. Proceeds go to beautify and preserve the cathedral grounds. 10 a.m. to 6 p.m. May 4, 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. May 5. Admission is free. 3101 Wisconsin Ave. NW. 202/537-3185.

The critics’ darling

Arcade Fire’s debut album was nominated for a Grammy in 2005, but the seven-member indie rock group out of Montreal didn’t crack under the pressure of fans and record labels. Now its second album, “Neon Bible,” released in March, has met even greater acclaim and a No. 1 spot on the music charts. Hear the group at the DAR Constitution Hall on May 4. Tickets are $30. Showtime is 8 p.m. DAR Constitution Hall 18th and C streets Northwest. 202/397-SEAT.


Bridging the Bay

See the Chesapeake Bay from a new perspective with the Chesapeake Bay Bridge Walk on May 6. The annual 4.3-mile walk attracts thousands of residents and visitors each year all looking to get a little exercise and take in the vast views of the bay. The walk begins at 9 a.m. See https://baybridge.com or call 877/BAY-SPAN.


Pocketful of dreams

French electronica heavyweights Air stop at the 9:30 Club on May 9. The musical duo is touring in support of their fifth album, “Pocket Symphony,” released in March to rave reviews. Norwegian singer-songwriter Kate Havnevik opens. Doors open at 7 p.m. Tickets are $40. 815 V St. NW. 202/393-0930.


In focus

German photographer Wolfgang Tillmans, known for his ability to capture people at their most “human” moments, opens his first-ever solo exhibition in the United States at the Hirshhorn Museum and Sculpture Garden on May 10. The exhibit features more than 300 photographs from throughout his career. The show runs through Aug. 12. Hours are 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. daily. Independence Avenue and Seventh Street Southwest. 202/633-1000.

Three days of jazz

The 12th annual Mary Lou Williams Jazz Festival kicks off on May 10 at the Kennedy Center with the smooth sounds of Lynne Arriale, Karen Briggs and Flora Purim. Continuing through May 12, the festival features 10 of the top female jazz performers from around the world. Concerts begin each night at 7 in the Terrace Theater. Tickets are $30, or $81 for all three nights. F Street and New Hampshire Avenue Northwest. 202/467-4600.


Hot chili, live rock

The annual DC101 Chili Cookoff offers more than some great-tasting homemade chili. Live music echoes through downtown during the event. This year’s cookoff on May 12 will feature performances by Three Days Grace, Buckcherry, Silversun Pickups, Breaking Benjamin and Jet throughout the day. Proceeds benefit the National Kidney Foundation. Tickets range from $30 to $45. Gates open at 11 a.m. at the Center City lot at 11th Street and New York Avenue Northwest. 202/397-SEAT.


Lions, tigers and jazz

The National Zoo becomes an elegant dining area on May 17 for Friends of the National Zoo’s annual Zoofari gala. This year’s theme is “Savanna Soiree” in honor of the zoo’s African animal collection. Guests will enjoy food and wine from more than 100 local restaurants and vintners, dance to the sounds of the Tokens and can bid on prizes during the silent auction. The evening begins at 6:30 p.m. Tickets range from $125 to $175. 3001 Connecticut Ave. NW. 202/633-1000.



Tour George Washington’s Mount Vernon by candlelight and enjoy some of Virginia’s finest wines during the annual Spring Wine Festival and Sunset Tour on May 18-20. Guests can sample wine from 16 Virginia wineries, see the mansion’s cellar where Washington stored his wine and listen to the sounds of the Dixie Power Trio, who will provide live jazz music throughout the evening. The festival runs from 6 to 9 each night. Admission is $30. South end of George Washington Memorial Parkway. 202/397-SEAT.

Flying high

The U.S. Air Force Thunderbirds will dazzle the crowds this year at the 2007 Joint Service Open House on May 18-20. Held annually at Andrews Air Force Base, the event is a rare chance for the public to get up close and personal with military vehicles and planes. The open house is restricted to Department of Defense personnel on May 18 but open to the public on May 19 and 20. Admission is free. Parking is prohibited at the base, but shuttles will run from both FedEx Field and the Branch Avenue Metro Station, on the Green Line in Suitland. See www.jsoh.org for more information.


Come hungry

Taste what Arlington restaurants have to offer at the 2007 Taste of Arlington on May 20 at Ballston Common Mall. This year’s participating restaurants include Carlyle, La Tasca, Lebanese Taverna, Tallula, Willow and the Melting Pot. Tickets are $20, which includes six tastes. Call 703/842-2317 or see www.tasteofarlington.com for complete information.


Free Shakespeare

See Shakespeare’s “Love’s Labors Lost” free at the annual Shakespeare Free For All beginning on May 24 at the Carter Barron Amphitheater. Four free tickets per person are available on the day of each performance at the Shakespeare Theatre, 450 Seventh St. NW and at the amphitheater. Showtimes are 7:30 each night. 4850 Colorado Ave. NW. 202/547-1122.


Jazz nights at NGA

The National Gallery of Art’s Jazz in the Garden music series kicks off on May 25 with the Latin jazz sounds of the Afro Bop Alliance. The free series, now entering its seventh year at the Sculpture Garden, offers music from a different Washington area jazz group every Friday through Aug. 31. The music starts at 5 p.m. and runs through 8:30 p.m. Seventh Street and Constitution Avenue Northwest. 202/842-6941.


The NSO remembers

In what has become an annual tradition, the National Symphony Orchestra hosts its Memorial Day Concert on the West Lawn of the Capitol on May 27. Under the direction of Erich Kunzel, this year’s performance will commemorate the 62nd anniversary of the battle of Iwo Jima and will feature tributes to the troops currently in Iraq and Afghanistan. The concert begins at 8 p.m., but show up early for a good seat. Admission free.


Lest we forget

Remember and honor veterans by attending one of the many special events and ceremonies held throughout the city on Memorial Day. The day begins with wreath-laying ceremonies and concerts at the Tomb of the Unknowns in Arlington National Cemetery and the Navy Memorial. Both ceremonies begin at 11 a.m. The Vietnam Veterans Memorial also honors past and present military members with a wreath-laying service beginning at 1 p.m. Then at 2 p.m., the annual National Memorial Day Parade begins its trek down Constitution Avenue starting at Fifth Street. This year’s parade features military units and marching bands from across the country along with floats and other family-oriented entertainment. For more parade information, click on www.nationalmemorialdayparade.com.


Domingo at Strathmore

The Washington National Opera leaves the Kennedy Center Opera House on May 31 for another great performance hall, the Music Center at Strathmore. Many of the opera’s principal singers will join Placido Domingo as he conducts the Washington National Opera Orchestra through a range of opera highlights. Tickets range from $38 to $78. Showtime is 8 p.m. 5301 Tuckerman Lane, Bethesda. 301/581-5100.

Thomas Walter

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