Cultural Events in DC

Cultural Events in DC

DC is an expensive city, but after a while interns learn to perfect the art of having fun for not not too much money. Cultural events occur all the time here and are a good and inexpensive way to have a good time.

I had the opportunity to go to the Latino Festival with two Bolivian friends from the RAF. The Latino Festival in Washington DC, also known as Fiesta DC, is an annual celebration highlighting the Latino culture with a Parade of Nations, a children’s festival, a science fair, a diplomatic pavilion for embassies and consulates, arts & crafts, and international cuisine. The free festival is huge and take place at the Columbia Heights neighborhood, bringing together dozens of non profit organizations, community leaders, and members of the corporate and private sector. At the Fiesta, we saw traditional Bolivian dancers, a band from El Savador, and a Brazilian marching band. Watching the traditional ceremonies, I thought back fondly to my travels in Bolivia (which took place from Dec. 2007 - Feb. 2008). This was quite the festive atmosphere, and the food was great!

The following week, I went to the Turkish Festival. It took place right on Pennsylvania Avenue and stretched for a few blocks. In the street, a huge stage had been set up and a very talented band played traditional music as a belly dancer performed. Taking advantage of the bountiful supply of Turkish goods, I bought some Turkish coffee (great stuff), tea, and baklava.

Another fun one was the China festival at the National Mall, right by Capitol Hill. Though quite small, the performances were very good. The highlights were definitely the women's choir and a well executed performance by a large group of children. Seeing this in front of the Capitol Hill building was very surreal.

I can't mention culture without mentioning the amazing selection of international food. Thai, Mexican, Indian, Ethiopian, Chinese, Bolivian, Lebanese... the list goes on.  You name it, DC has it. No it is not free, and don't expect to eat out every night as an unpaid intern, but I highly recommend indulging every once in a while. There are amazing restaurants at Georgtown, U Street, K Street, Foggy Bottom, and hidden all around the city.

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