Sunny and pleasant weather and a big-name headliner attracted the largest crowd yet to the Columbia Pike Blues Festival over the weekend, organizers said.
We’re told more than 7,000 people turned out for the 18th annual Blues Festival, which is held on S. Walter Reed Drive just north of the Pike. Guitarist G.E. Smith, of Saturday Night Live and Hall & Oates fame, headlined the event.
Takis Karantonis, Executive Director of the Columbia Pike Revitalization Organization, said he wasn’t surprised by the new attendance record. He expects the festival to continue to grow in crowds and quality as community ties continue to strengthen around the developing Columbia Pike town center area.
Asked about the ideal weather condition, Karantonis wouldn’t comment, for fear of jinxing next year’s festival.
“We don’t talk about the weather — before, during and after,” he said.
Disclosure: CPRO is an ARLnow.com advertiser.
Fish and Wildlife Office to Leave Arlington — On the heels of the decision to move the National Science Foundation from Arlington to Alexandria, the General Services Administration is expected to announce soon that the Fish and Wildlife Service is leaving, as well. The Dept. of the Interior agency, which occupies three office buildings in Ballston, is “seeking a less expensive space option outside Arlington.” [Washington Business Journal]
Restaurant Fire in Crystal City — A fire broke out in the kitchen of Cafe Manna in Crystal City around 5:30 last night. The restaurant is located on the ground floor of the office building at 2345 Crystal Drive. A sprinkler system helped to extinguish the flames before they spread, but the restaurant suffered smoke and water damage.
Mary Marshall Scholars Announced — Arlington County has named the eight local high school students who will receive $1,500 college scholarships as part of the Mary Marshall scholarship program. The scholarships, awarded to those who are pursuing careers in public service, are named after former House of Delegates member Mary Marshall. [Arlington County]
Teen Battle of the Bands This Weekend — Artisphere (1101 Wilson Blvd) will host a teen battle of the bands competition on Saturday. The competition, from 6:00 to 9:00 p.m., will feature at least 8 local teen bands. The concert was organized by D.C.-area high school seniors as part of a month-long internship at Artisphere. Tickets are $5. [Artisphere]
Army Celebrates Birthday — Today (Friday) is the U.S. Army’s 238th birthday. The occasion will be marked with a wreath-laying ceremony from 2:30 to 3:00 p.m. at the Tomb of the Unknowns at Arlington National Cemetery. [U.S. Army]
Flickr pool photo by Martin Humm
Whether outdoors or inside, there are numerous events taking place around Arlington this weekend where you can spend some quality time with dad. Here are a few to consider:
Columbia Pike Blues Fest — The free event features food, music and children’s activities. Festivities run from 1:00-8:00 p.m. on Saturday, on S. Walter Reed Drive at Columbia Pike. This year’s headliner is guitarist G.E. Smith, who gained widespread fame through his time as the musical director on Saturday Night Live, following his stint as the lead guitarist for the band Hall & Oates. More information, including a full music schedule, can be found online.
Donuts with Dad — The Cherrydale Branch Library (2190 N. Military Road) still has a few spots open for dads and kids who want to stop by on Saturday for some sweet treats. From 10:30-11:30 a.m., the library will provide donuts and a craft activity for children. The event is free, but advance sign up is required by calling 703-228-6330 or visiting by the library.
Crystal Car Auto Festival — Crystal City is hosting its first annual Father’s Day Auto Festival. Visitors can check out a variety of autos, including innovative electric vehicles and classic muscle cars. The event runs from 2:00-6:00 p.m. on Sunday. Admission is free and a cash beer garden offers beer and wine. More information about exact locations for the auto festival can be found online.
Dash 4 Dad Race — Pacers has again partnered with ZERO — The Project to End Prostate Cancer for the four mile Dash for Dad race on Sunday. The 8:30 a.m. race begins at Pentagon Row close to the Pacers store (1101 S. Joyce Street). Registration and road closures for the race can be found online.
Go Fishing — Although the county no longer stocks trout in Four Mile Run due to budget cuts, residents are still allowed to fish in local waterways. Anglers over the age of 16 need a license to fish. The Department of Parks and Recreation website uses a fish logo to indicate parks — such as Alcova Heights, Glencarlyn and Upper Pimmit Run — where visitors may be successful in pulling in a catch.
Disclosure: Crystal City BID and Columbia Pike Revitalization Organization are ARLnow.com advertisers
The “Shirlala Music Festival” will include 10 weeks of live music from various genres, plus wine tastings from Shirlington’s Cheesetique store. The festival is an outgrowth of the former Shirlington jazz festival.
The event is free and open to the public, but the wine tasting is $5. It will be held from 6:30 to 8:30 p.m. every Thursday, from June 13 to August 22 (except July 4).
This year’s musical lineup includes:
- June 13 — Jeff Carmella Band (Rock)
- June 20 — MARS 4-tet (Jazz)
- June 27 – King Teddy (Swing)
- July 11 — Dan Haas Trio (Pop Rock)
- July 18 – Lloyd Dobler Effect (80s & 90s Covers)
- July 25 — The Shack Band (Rock & Funk)
- August 1 — Ewabo (Steel Tropical Drums)
- August 8 — Taylor Carson (Acoustic Rock)
- August 15 — The Morrison Brothers (Southern Rock)
- August 22 — Beach Bumz (Jimmy Buffett Tribute Band)
On the weekend of June 22 and 23, national art show promoter Howard Alan Events will hold the inaugural “Arlington Festival of the Arts,” a “two-day juried outdoor gallery style art exhibit” featuring various works from “100 of the finest artists in the country.”
The festival is free and will take place each day from 10:00 a.m. to 5:00 p.m., on N. Highland Street near the Clarendon Metro station.
“Festival patrons can expect to see bold and vibrant paintings, contemporary and whimsical art, life-size sculptures, photography, handcrafted jewelry and much more,” said a press release. “A food festival hosted by the Clarendon Alliance will be located adjacent to the Metro Station stop on Clarendon Boulevard and Highland Street. Admission to the art show is free and open to the public.”
Also in June, the Market Common Clarendon shopping center (2700 Clarendon Blvd) will kick off a summer-long acoustic music festival. Concert-goers are encouraged to bring picnic blankets or lawn chairs to the free concerts, in the Market Common Clarendon courtyard.
The concerts will be held from 6:00 to 8:00 p.m. on Thursday nights. The scheduled artist lineup is as follows.
- June 6 — Lloyd Dobler Effect
- June 13 — Hand Painted Swinger
- June 20 — Josh Burgess
- June 27 — Willem Dicke
- July 4 — David Andrew Smith
- July 11 — Melodime
- July 18 — Levi Stephens
- July 25 — Jason Masi
- August 1 — FarAway Duo
- August 8 — Paul Pfau
- August 15 — Shane Gamble
- August 22 — Heather Renee
- August 29 — Kerry McCool
A free blues concert will be held Thursday evening (May 16) at Penrose Square on Columbia Pike. The event is being held to promote the upcoming Columbia Pike Blues Festival.
Thursday’s concert will take place starting at 6:30 p.m. and will feature Karl Stoll and the Danger Zone and the Chris Polk Band. The concert, at Penrose Square (2503 Columbia Pike), is free and open to the public.
The 18th annual Columbia Pike Blues Festival will take place on June 15 and feature legendary guitarist G.E. Smith, who’s best known for being the musical director for Saturday Night Live and for being lead guitarist for Hall & Oates, Bob Dylan and other major musical acts.
As always, the Blues Festival will be held on S. Walter Reed Drive just north of Columbia Pike. The performance schedule on June 15 includes:
- 1:00 p.m. — BG and the Mojo Hands
- 2:00 p.m. — Clarence “Bluesman” Turner
- 3:30 p.m. — Chris Polk [Sound Check]
- 5:00 p.m. — Cathy Ponton King
- 6:30 p.m. — G.E. Smith
File photo. Disclosure: Columbia Pike Revitalization Organization, organizer of the Blues Festival, is an ARLnow.com advertiser.
The 11th annual “Rock the Row” summer concert series at Pentagon Row will start June 6, but in a different location than years past.
Thanks to major renovations at the shopping center’s plaza, this year the concerts will be held in the alley between Pentagon Row and the Pentagon City mall parking garage. The alley will be closed to traffic during the concerts. As before, the concerts will take place on Thursday evenings from 7:00 p.m. to 9:00 p.m.
This year’s Rock the Row schedule is as follows:
- June 6: Slippery When Wet (Bon Jovi tribute)
- June 13: Hyjinx (90s cover)
- June 20: Uncle Jack Band (70s tribute)
- June 27: Gonzo’s Nose (80s tribute)
- July 11: Unity Reggae Band (Reggae)
- July 18: All Mighty Senators (Rock and Soul)
- July 25: The Crawdaddies (Roots Rock and Zydeco)
- August 1: Beach Bumz (Jimmy Buffett tribute)
- August 8: Higher Hands (Funk)
- August 15: Matt Hutchison Band (Pop Rock)
- August 22: Real Geniuses (80s tribute)
- August 29: Crowded Streets (Dave Matthews tribute)
The concerts are free and open to the public.
The renovations at the Pentagon Row plaza include an expanded ice rink during the winter, a turf lawn during the summer, revamped outdoor dining areas, 1,500 square feet of new retail and dining space, lighted water fountains and a stone fire pit. Construction on the project is expected to wrap up this fall.
Arlington County has released the performance schedule for the upcoming summer season at the Lubber Run Amphitheater.
Opening night at the amphitheater is scheduled for Friday, June 14, with soul and R&B artist Marry Ann Redmond performing. The season will close on Saturday, Aug. 3 with hip hop and jazz artist Rico Amero.
The amphitheater, which underwent a round of critical repairs in 2011, is located at N. Columbus Street and 2nd Street N., two blocks north of Route 50.
The full schedule can be found below. All shows are free and open to the public, and start at 8:00 p.m. unless otherwise noted.
- Friday, June 14 — Mary Ann Redmond (soul/R&B)
- Saturday, June 15 — Halau O’Aulani and the Aloha Boys (Hawaiian dance)
- Monday, June 17 — Metropolitan Chorus (choral)
- Wednesday, June 19 — Potomac Harmony Chorus (a cappella)
- Friday, June 21 – The U.S. Army Blues (jazz)
- Saturday, June 22 — King Teddy (big band/swing)
- Sunday, June 23 at 6:00 p.m. — The Constituents (acoustic/Caribbean)
- Friday, June 28 — Margot MacDonald (singer-songwriter)
- Saturday, June 29 — Eric Scott (pop/neo-soul)
- Sunday, June 30 at 6:00 p.m. — Black Muddy River Band (acoustic)
- Friday, July 5 — Colleen Shanley and Grand Junction (bluegrass/folk rock)
- Saturday, July 6 — Mystic Warriors (New Age/jazz)
- Sunday, July 7 at 6:00 p.m. — Bob Gibson Big Band (big band/swing)
- Friday, July 12 — Juniper Lane (pop/rock)
- Saturday, July 13 — Andrew Acosta and the New Old Time String Band (acoustic/traditional)
- Friday, July 19 – Ted Garber (blues/rocsc
- Saturday, July 20 — The Grandsons (rock)
- Sunday, July 21 at 6:00 p.m. – Russkie Musikanti (Russian folk)
- Friday, July 26 — “Much Ado About Nothing” (Shakespeare play)
- Saturday, July 27 — The Tone Rangers (a cappella/comedy)
- Friday, August 2 — Hexagon (political satire)
- August 3 — Rico Amero (hip hop/jazz)
Ladino music and Yiddish punk will be coming to Arlington this week.
Two Jewish-American musicians, Sarah Aroeste (see music video here) and Daniel Kahn (see music video, above), will be playing at Artisphere on Thursday as part of the two-week-long Washington Jewish Music Festival.
“Sarah Aroeste will open with the premiere of an unplugged version of her album ‘Gracia,’ which fuses the Judeo-Spanish sounds of Ladino music with rock, pop, jazz and funk,” said a festival press release. “Daniel Kahn and the Painted Bird employ an inimitable mixture of radical Yiddish song, punk sensibility and re-worked klezmer melodies.”
“Bringing together punk-infused Yiddish from Daniel Kahn and Judeo-Spanish sounds of Sarah Aroeste will create an exhilarating and unique experience for our community,” said festival director Lili Kalish Gersch. “This will be a festival that appeals to music lovers of all stripes and all ages and should not be missed.”
The performances will take place at Artisphere (1101 Wilson Blvd) at 7:30 p.m. Tickets start at $20.
Tickets and the festival schedule are available online.
Sisqó, the Baltimore native best known for his 2000 hit single “Thong Song,” is scheduled to perform later this month at Mad Rose Tavern (3100 Clarendon Blvd) in Clarendon.
Sisqó, also of the R&B group Dru Hill, will be performing as part of an “I [Heart] the 90′s Party” at Mad Rose at 9:00 p.m. on Thursday, March 28. The event will feature a performance by Sisqó and 90s music played by DJ Chris Styles.
Clarinet Capers with Julian Milkis — Saturday, Jan. 12 from 7:30 to 9:30 p.m. — Hailed as one of the world’s greatest living clarinetists, Julian Milkis remains the only student of Jazz Legend Benny Goodman, and has been described as a dazzling soloist, chamber musician and jazz clarinetist. Milkis will perform at Artisphere’s Spectrum Theater with members of the National Chamber Ensemble: Kathryn Brake on piano, Leo Sushansky on violin, and Uri Wassertzug on viola.
Holiday pops concert, “A Singers’ Blue Christmas” –Dec. 14 & 15 from 7:30-9:30 p.m. — Join the Alexandria Singers, the DC area’s premier pops chorus, for our annual holidays pops concert weekend as we weave pop and jazz arrangements of traditional holiday classics with new tunes that will instantly become your holiday favorites! Note 3 show times! Friday Dec 14th 7:30; Saturday Dec 15th 2pm AND 7:30pm! The concert will take place at Convergence (1801 N. Quaker Lane) in Fairlington. For tickets visit: https://shop.AlexandriaSingers.com
National Chamber Ensemble’s Annual Holiday Concert — Dec. 16 from 4:30 to 6:30 p.m. — The National Chamber Ensemble (NCE) celebrates the spirit of the holiday season on Sunday, December 16 with a show for the whole family. The performance will feature great music, an international guest artist and outstanding young musicians. An annual tradition, the concert will include seasonal favorites like Leroy Anderson’s “Sleigh Ride”, a Hanukkah Medley and more. The event will take place at the Spectrum Theatre at Artisphere (1611 N. Kent Street).
Starting today, ARLnow.com will be highlighting select events from our event calendar. This is the first of what will eventually be daily “featured event” listings. Submit your event to the calendar here.
Symphony Orchestra of Arlington Family Holiday Concert – Saturday, Dec. 8 from 7:00 to 8:30 p.m. — The Symphony Orchestra of Arlington (SOA) will present its “Family Holiday Concert” at the beautiful Arlington Temple United Methodist Church. Tickets are now on sale — $15 for adults and $10 for age 12 and under. Purchases are available online at www.symphonyorchestraofarlington.com or at the box office by calling (804)-322-9328.
“MarchFourth Marching Band (M4 to its fans) is a kaleidoscope of musical and visual energy that inspires dancing in an atmosphere of celebration,” Artisphere said in a press release. “Visually enhanced by costumed dancing beauties, acrobatic stilt walkers, unicycles, life size marionettes and many more theatrics, M4 invokes dancing in the streets and beyond! The sound is huge, melodic and dynamic, taking audiences on a musical journey around the globe.”
The Portland, Ore.-based band, formed in 2003, has performed at the Burning Man Festival in California and as an opening act for singer Gwen Stefani.