Clarendon’s biggest annual street festival, Clarendon Day, is back for its 17th iteration this Saturday, and with it comes the return of the D.C. Chili Cookoff.
This year’s festival goes from 11:00 a.m. to 5:00 p.m. on the streets outside the Clarendon Metro station, at the intersection of N. Highland Street and Wilson and Clarendon Blvds. There will be 40 bands and musicians playing on five stages throughout the day, headlined by singer-songwriter Amber Rubarth at 2:45 p.m. on the main stage.
While music will fill the air all afternoon long, so will the smell of chili. The chili cookoff, sponsored by the International Chili Society, will see dozens of homemade chili chefs cooking up batches of red chili, chili verde, salsa and homestyle recipes, all competing for the chance to participate in the World Championship Chili Cookoff this October in Palm Springs, Calif. Chefs will be providing tastings of their chili, and those hankering for something else will be able to choose from more than a dozen local restaurants’ tents.
Participants last year were disappointed by the long lines for beer, which often stretched dozens deep. This year, festival organizer Clarendon Alliance said “we have revised our event layout to allow for faster beverage service,” which includes two bars in different sections, with breweries participating in next month’s Courthouse Arts and Craft Beer Festival and wine.
Along Wilson Blvd, there will again be dozens of arts and crafts vendors and exhibitors, and by Clarendon Central Park there will be activity spaces for children. The festival itself is free to enter.
Roads in Clarendon will be closed all day Saturday to accommodate the festival. That includes starting at 5:00 a.m. on Wilson Blvd to N. Lynn Street to accommodate the annual Clarendon Day 5K/10K, which will also close southbound Route 110 from 8:00-10:00 a.m. Wilson and Clarendon Blvds will close from Washington Blvd to N. Highland Street until the evening, as will Highland Street from 11th Street N. to just before N. Hancock Street.
Flickr pool photo by J Sonder
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Clarendon Day Date Set — The annual Clarendon Day street fair will be held on Saturday, Sept. 27, the Clarendon Alliance has announced. This year the event will add a bluegrass music stage next to the Clarendon Chili Cookoff. The layout is also being changed “to make it easier for people to find the cold beverages of their choice.” [Clarendon Alliance]
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Flickr pool photo by Kevin Wolf
The 16th annual Clarendon Day and the official D.C. Chili Cookoff are back for another year this Saturday.
From 11:00 a.m. to 5:00 p.m., visitors can partake in the street festival with food, beer and wine, local vendors and businesses.
The highlight of the festival figures to be the D.C. Chili Cookoff. Hard Times co-founder Jim Parker brought the cookoff to Clarendon after 33 years in D.C., most recently as the DC101 Chili Cookoff at RFK Stadium.
Judges will begin tasting the chili at 1:00 p.m., and those in attendance — once the judges have their fill — will be able to sample the chili for 25 cents apiece, with proceeds going to the Wounded Warrior Project. The winners of the cookoff, in the red chili, chili verde, salsa and homestyle categories, will go on to participate in the World’s Championship Chili Cookoff in October.
The event is free and open to the public, and will be put on rain or shine. From 5:00 a.m. to 7:00 p.m., Wilson Blvd and Clarendon Blvd will be closed from Washington Blvd to N. Garfield Street and N. Highland Street will be closed from N. Hartford Street to 11th Street. Parking will be restricted, so those planning to drive should be aware of the “No Parking” signs posted in the area.
Disclosure: Clarendon Alliance is an ARLnow.com advertiser
The 16th annual Clarendon Day festival, in September, will include a new addition: the official D.C. Chili Cookoff.
The cookoff is moving to Clarendon after its usual venue, the DC101 Chili Cookoff at RFK Stadium, apparently didn’t include an actual chili competition this past May. The event will now be sponsored by Hard Times Cafe.
“We wanted to carry on the D.C. Chili tradition since we’ve been involved with it for the past 33 years,” said Hard Times co-founder Jim Parker. “The cookoff is sanctioned by the International Chili Society (ICS) and we expect to host competition chili cooks from all over the East Coast.”
Parker said past chili cookoffs have consisted of about 30 cooking teams competing in three categories: red chili, chili verde and salsa. This year, however, a new category, called “homestyle,” will be added.
“This category is more like the chili your mother used to make,” Parker said.
The teams will set up on the morning of Clarendon Day and cook chili on site. A panel of judges will start tasting the chili around 1:00 p.m., and the winners will be announced around 5:00 p.m. The winners will be the final qualifiers for the World’s Championship Chili Cookoff in California in October.
“Once the chilies (and salsa) are turned in to the judges the general public may taste and vote for the chili or salsa they like the best — as long as it lasts,” said Parker.
Clarendon Day will take place from 11:00 a.m. to 5:00 p.m. on Saturday, Sept. 28, in the area around the Clarendon Metro station. In addition to chili, the event will feature live music; food from local restaurants; beer, wine and other beverages; arts and crafts exhibitors; kids’ activities; and booths manned by local businesses and organizations.
Matt Hussmann, Executive Director of the Clarendon Alliance, which organizes Clarendon Day, says the chili cookoff will be a welcome addition to the day’s festivities.
“We’re very excited about having the D.C. Chili Cookoff,” said Matt Hussmann. “We’re hoping for a great event.”
Whereas the DC101 Chili Cookoff was a music-centric event, Hussmann said that cookoff organizers were looking for a new venue that will allow the chili to stand on its own.
“They really wanted to re-calibrate what they’re doing,” he said. “They wanted to focus on the chili and on family-friendly events. We’re pretty happy about it.”
Hussmann said other Clarendon Day details, like the live music lineup, are still being worked out. One notable subtraction this year: the Virginia Hospital Center Foundation “Family Fun Day” attractions that have been featured in previous years.
Clarendon Day Draws a Crowd — Thousands enjoyed “picture perfect” weather at the annual 15th Clarendon Day street festival and 10K/5K race (photo, above) on Saturday. [Patch]
Victories for Yorktown, DJO, W-L — In local football action over the weekend, Yorktown defeated Hayfield 17-10 and Bishop O’Connell defeated Carroll 38-7 over the weekend. Both teams are now undefeated with a record of 4-0. Washington-Lee is now 2-2 after beating Mount Vernon 41-20. Wakefield is 0-4 after losing another lopsided game. The Warriors fell to Freedom South Riding 55-6.
Free Coffee at McDonald’s — McDonald’s restaurants are giving away free small cups of coffee through Saturday. The restaurant is offering the one free cup of coffee per person per visit.
Flickr pool photo by Wolfkann
A number of streets will be closed tomorrow (Saturday) for the annual Clarendon Day festival and race.
The Clarendon Day 10K, 5K and Kids Dash races will take place between 8:00 and 10:30 a.m. During that time, drivers should expect closures along Wilson Boulevard from N. Fillmore Street in Clarendon to Route 110 in Rosslyn. Parts of northbound Route 110 and N. Kent Street will also be closed.
A large central section of Clarendon will be off-limits to motorists for most of the day for the festival – which includes live music, entertainment, arts and craft, food and beer. Closures will be in place from 5:00 a.m. to 7:00 p.m. along the following streets:
- Wilson Blvd from Washington Blvd to N. Garfield Street
- Clarendon Blvd from Washington Blvd to N. Garfield Street
- N. Highland Street between N. 11th Street and N. Hartford Street
Street parking along the race routes and around the festival area will be restricted, and police are expected to tow cars that are still parked in the temporary no parking zone Saturday morning.
Disclosure: Clarendon Day is an ARLnow.com advertiser
Clarendon Day will run from 11:00 a.m.-5:30 p.m. on September 22, near the Clarendon Metro. Admission is free to attend the event, which will take place rain or shine.
The morning begins with the fourth annual 10K/5K/Kids Dash, which begins in front of Whitlow’s on Wilson (Kids Dash in front of Market Common) and takes runners on a course along the Orange Line corridor. Registration can be completed online.
This is the first year the event will include the “Clarendon Alliance Battle of the Bands.” The music lineup hasn’t yet been announced, but should be listed on the event website as the day grows near.
There will also be more activities for kids this year. From face painting to jugglers to climbing activities, the little ones should have plenty to keep them occupied.
More than a dozen local restaurants will serve up food and drinks, including Delhi Club, Lyon Hall, Northside Social, Pete’s New Haven Style Apizza and District Taco. Dozens of other exhibitors will be set up to satisfy attendees’ shopping cravings.
There will be a number of street closures for Clarendon Day. Clarendon Blvd and Wilson Blvd will be closed between Washington Blvd and Highland Street by 5:00 a.m. Wilson Blvd between Highland Street and Lynn Street will be closed from 8:00–9:30 a.m. to accommodate the race. Route 110 southbound will be closed from 8:00–10:30 a.m. Additional closures may be announced as the event approaches.
Live music. Dancing. Food. Exhibitors. Kid’s activities. Arts and Crafts. A skateboarding demonstration.
Clarendon Day has a little something for everyone. The annual street fair, held on several streets in the heart of Clarendon, went off without a hitch on Saturday.
Though cloudy, the afternoon was mercifully rain-free, which helped to boost attendance. See the rest of our photos from the event, after the jump.
While this weekend’s IMF/World Bank meetings tie up traffic in the District, Arlington will be dealing with its own series of significant road closures on Saturday and Sunday.
5:00 a.m. to 8:00 p.m.:
- Wilson Blvd and Clarendon Blvd between Washington Blvd and N. Garfield Street
- N. Highland Street and N. Hartford Street at Wilson Blvd
- N. Herndon Street at Wilson Blvd
- N. Hudson Street at Wilson Blvd
- N. Highland Street at Washington Blvd
6:00 to 10:00 a.m.:
- Kent Street between N. 19th Street and Wilson Blvd
- Northbound Route 110 between Rosslyn and Route 1 in Crystal City
8:00 to 10:00 a.m.:
- Wilson Blvd from Arlington Ridge Road to N. Highland Street
On Sunday, the following streets will be closed for the Navy 5 Miler race.
6:00 to 10:00 a.m.:
- Northbound I-395 Exit 8B to Washington Blvd will be closed
- Washington Blvd between I-395 and the George Washington Parkway
- Southgate Road between Columbia Pike and S. Oak Street
- Columbia Pike east of S Joyce Street
- Access to Boundary Drive from I-395 (Exits 9 and 10A)