B Double E Double R-U-N, Beer Run!

In the DC area, we like to work hard and play hard, so it’s no surprise that combining drinking beer with running has taken off. From casual weekly meetups to official races, you can find endless ways to sweat it out in pursuit of earning yourself a cold one.

Big Races

If you need a little extra motivation to get running, the Fit Foodie Festival & 5K in downtown Fairfax might be for you. At 8 a.m. on Saturday, June 22, runners will meander through a 5K course, stopping for gourmet bites along the way. At the end, they’ll be rewarded with celebratory drinks in a beer garden. Pre-registration is $45; $55 on day of event.

Pacers Beer Mile at 6 p.m. on Aug. 10 isn’t for the faint of heart. By definition, a beer mile is where a runner does four laps, chugging a beer between each lap. But don’t worry, if this sounds like too much beer (or too much running) runners can form a group to do it as a relay. Registration is $32-$40 per person or $44-$60 for a team.

Weekly Meetups

If you’re looking for something a little more informal, many breweries and bars hold weekly fun runs.

Port City, 3950 Wheeler Ave., Alexandria, holds their Joggers and Lagers club Mondays from 7-9 p.m. Runners can pick a 1-, 3-, or 5-mile run out and back on a scenic paved path along Holmes Run.

Lake Anne Brew House, 11424 Washington Plaza W, Reston, has a Beer Run Club which meets every Saturday at 9:45 a.m. and the last Wednesday of every month at 6:30 p.m. For those Wednesday runs, the taproom is open only for the running participants until 8:30 p.m. Talk about feeling like part of an exclusive club!

World of Beer teams up with Potomac River Running in One Loudoun to bring a weekly Thursday night Pub Run starting at 6:30 p.m. At the end of the event, participants can get $1 off beers.

Caboose Tavern, 520 Mill St. NE, Vienna, VA, holds Trails and Ales, a 3-5 mile run on the W&OD trail, every Monday at 6:30 p.m.

Finally, Old Ox Brewery in Ashburn has a biweekly Trottin’ Oxen club, running along the W&OD trail at 10:30 a.m. on Saturdays and 6:30 p.m. on Tuesdays.

Hashing

Often described as a “drinking club with a running problem,” local hashing leagues look to connect those who love running and alcohol enough to want to do the two at the same time, literally. The rules are simple. A runner called a “hare” goes out ahead of the pack and blazes a crude trail with flour. The rest of the club follows suit, sometimes stopping at predetermined checkpoints where they must chug a beer. The run usually terminates at a pub or other drinking establishment. If you’re wondering why this isn’t already part of your workout regimen, check this comprehensive list of hashing leagues in the area to get started.

Drink, Shop, Relax

If you’re still on a vacation high from the long weekend and looking for ways to celebrate next weekend, check out these exciting local events:

Bourbon & Bluegrass: Don’t forget to bring your sunscreen and blanket to this fun event featuring live bluegrass music and specialty Knob Creek bourbon cocktails at President Lincoln’s Cottage at Eagle Gate at Rock Creek Church Road and Upshur Street NW, 1-5 p.m. Saturday and Sunday, June 1 and 2. Tickets ($65; $35 under 21; 6 and under free) include two drink tickets, beer samples from local breweries and a tour of the grounds. VIP tickets ($100; $65 under 21; 6 and under free) include access to the VIP section of the Governor’s Mansion where you can see Lincoln’s goblet, unlimited snacks and free parking. Performers include The Fly Birds, Moose Jaw Bluegrass, By & By, Hollertown, Rock Creek Revival and Reed Appleseed. Nonalcoholic beverages and food will be for sale. Featured vendors include Geppetto Catering, Pepe food truck and Timber Pizza. All proceeds go to support the cottage.

Brunch on the Baselines: Nationals Stadium will not lie dormant this weekend when our home team is playing in Cincinnati. Fans and food enthusiasts will take the field for an all-you-can-eat-and-drink brunch and photo op in the dugout from noon to 4 p.m. Sunday, June 2. Tickets are $75 for 21 and over, $35 for under 21 and $20 for those 6 and under. The menu includes fruit, eggs, bacon, fried chicken, potatoes and ice cream. Drinks include mimosas, bloody marys, beer, wine, soft drinks and water. Tables will be set up along the baselines and foul lines. No strollers, heels or backpacks. Parking is $20.

Beer in the ’Burbs: Lovers of beer will not want to miss Fairfax’s first craft beer festival from noon to 5 p.m. this Saturday, June 1, in Old Town Square. Sample beers from more than 15 breweries across the commonwealth; $3 for 3 ounces, $8 for 16 ounces. The event will also feature live music, and food will be available for purchase from food trucks.

Takoma Trukgarten: If you’re closer to the Maryland side, come to this craft beer celebration on the D.C.-Maryland line from noon to 5 Saturday, June 1, 201 Ethan Allen Ave., Takoma Park, MD. Sample from among 20 craft beers and ciders, and stop by the TPSS Co-op’s wine tent. Reps from local restaurants and food trucks will be on hand to sell tasty treats. Early-bird tickets are $25 and include six drink tickets and a commemorative glass. For $35, get the glass and 12 tickets. Nondrinkers pay $10 to get in. On the day of the event, ticket prices for drinkers are $10 more. Event goes on rain or shine, kids and dogs welcome, ID required to drink.

Yoga on the Waterfront: What’s more relaxing than child’s pose? Practicing yoga at the water’s edge for free! Come learn from yogis from the Yoga Factory, then follow up your class with free juice samples from Toastique. Transit Pier, 9 to 10 a.m.

The Pink Cabbage Funky Flea: If you prefer shopping to drinking, check out the wares from more than 50 vendors at this annual flea market in Ellicott City, MD, at 11707 Frederick Rd. Enjoy live music and stop by the food tent at this fun event, held from 8 a.m. to 3 p.m. Saturday, June 1; rain date Sunday, June 2. Proceeds go to benefit the American Cancer Society.

Make a Splash This Memorial Day Weekend

If you’re looking to cool off this holiday weekend — and with expected high temps in the 80s and 90s, who’s not? — take a dip in one of the many local pools opening tomorrow. Ranging from free to $45 per person, our list has something for everyone.

D.C. Public Pools

Francis Pool, 2435 N Street, NW, Washington, D.C.; free for D.C. residents, prices range from $3 to $7 for nonresidents. Hours: 10 a.m. – 8 p.m. Mon., Wed., Thurs. & Fri, 11 a.m. – 6 p.m. Sat & Sun. 

Banneker Pool2500 Georgia Ave, NW, Washington, D.C.; free for D.C. residents, prices range from $3 to $7 for nonresidents. Hours: 10 a.m. – 8 p.m. Mon., Tues., Wed. & Fri., 11 a.m. – 6 p.m. Sat & Sun. 

William H. Rumsey Aquatic Center635 North Carolina Avenue, SE, Washington, D.C.; free for D.C. residents, prices range from $3 to $7 for nonresidents. Hours: 6:30 a.m. – 9 p.m. Mon. – Fri.: 9 a.m. – 5 p.m. Sat & Sun.

Hotel Pools

The Liaison Capitol Hill Pool, 415 New Jersey Ave NW, Washington, D.C.;
$25 on weekdays, $35 on weekends. Hours: 8 a.m. – 8 p.m. daily, 8 – 10 p.m. 21+.

Embassy Row Hotel Pool, 2015 Massachusetts Ave NW, Washington, D.C.,
$30. Hours: Day pass entry begins at 3 p.m.

Courtyard by Marriott, 1900 Connecticut Ave. NW, Washington, D.C.,
$20. Hours: 10 a.m. – 8 p.m.

Capitol Skyline Hotel, 10 I St. SW. Washington, D.C., $45. Hours: 8 a.m. – 10 p.m. daily. Full summer-long memberships available for sale.

Suburban Pools

Martin Luther King Jr. Swim Center, 1201 Jackson Rd., Silver Spring, MD
$5-$7 for Montgomery County residents, $15 for nonresidents. Hours vary.

Sergeant Hector I. Ayala Wheaton/Glenmont Outdoor Pool, 12621 Dalewood Drive, Wheaton, $5-$7 for Montgomery County residents, $15 for nonresidents. Hours vary.

Wakefield Aquatics Center, 1325 S. Dinwiddie Street, Arlington, VA,
$2.65-$6.30 for residents, $5.25-$8.40 for nonresidents. Hours: 5:30-8:30 a.m., 11:30 a.m.-2 p.m., 6-8:30 p.m. Mon.-Thurs.; 5:30-8:30 a.m., 11:30 a.m.-2 p.m., 6-8 p.m. Friday; 10 a.m.-8 p.m. Sat.; 7:30 a.m.-6 p.m. Sun.

The Water Mine Family Swimmin’ Hole, 1400 Lake Fairfax Drive, Reston, VA, $16.50 over 48″ tall, weekends & holidays $15.50; over 48″ tall, Mon.-Fri. (except holidays) $12.75; under 48″ tall $9.50, 2 years old and under,  free. Hours: 10 a.m. – 7 p.m. on weekends and holidays until June 14, then 10 a.m. – 8 p.m. daily.

Summer Concerts: Find Out Who, When and Where

Between the sound of Metro track work and the voice you hear in your head telling you to get back to the gym, perhaps you’d like to hear something positive this summer. How about some live outdoor music? From rock to rap to country, there’s no concert shortage in the coming months.

Merriweather Post Pavilion

British rockers Florence + The Machine, led by vocal powerhouse Florence Welch, will be performing June 3. Concert-goers who don’t know the opener, Blood Orange, will be in for a pleasant, dancy, R&B surprise.

Nostalgic alternative rock fans will love seeing Third Eye Blind and Jimmy Eat World together on July 19.

And if you don’t want to choose between the rock and rap of the 00s, you don’t have to. Blink-182 are teaming up with Lil’ Wayne on July 21. (Not free that day? They’re also at Jiffy Lube Live on July 11.)

Jiffy Lube Live

If you wore your eyeliner heavy in high school, then you’re going to love Disrupt Festival on July 9. Emo artists — including The Used, Thrice and Circa Survive — will have you crying all day in the hot summer sun.

Were you more of a Band-Aid-on-your-left-cheek kind of kid? There’s something for you, too. Nelly, Flo Rida and TLC will be getting “Hot in Herre” on July 30. Just leave the boots with the fur at home.

Wolf Trap

Ten-dollar Miller Lites not your thing? Then grab some lawn tickets to a Wolf Trap show. You can bring your own beer and wine and spread out a blanket for a musical picnic under the stars.

The Avett Brothers will take on a residency of sorts Thursday-Saturday of this coming weekend (May 23-25). Who better to play three nights in a row at a national park than this folksy crew? Old souls will enjoy how their music harkens back to earlier days.

Mexican guitar duo Rodrigo y Gabriela will bring their whimsical, eclectic style to Wolf Trap on June 7. Largely influenced by genres as wide-ranging as flamenco and heavy metal, they’re a good choice if you’re looking for something a little different.

For late summer fun, multiple Grammy winner Kacey Musgraves will be bringing it in September 9. Hope you already got tickets — it’s already sold out!

Free Concerts

Not willing to shell out for live music? Don’t worry, there are also plenty of concerts for the alluring price of Free.99!

If your tastes are more eclectic, Music at the Monument (previously held at the Washington Monument) will take place at the Lincoln Memorial this year. Expect live music most Fridays (and some Saturdays, too!) through the end of August. Concert-goers can look forward to Hip Hop Reborn, local high school bands and even some performances from the U.S. Navy Band Commodores and the U.S. Army Blues, part of the U.S. Army Band.

Finally, National Gallery of Art’s Jazz in the Gardens is always a local favorite, every Friday in the summer from 5-8:30 p.m. What better way to feel cultured than enjoying jazz and sculpture at the same time, all without paying a cent? However, if you’re in the mood to splurge, they have an outdoor grill menu full of tantalizing treats, including a banh mi turkey burger.

When you need a little extra motivation to leave the house this summer, opt for an outdoor concert. Lucky for us, vibrant live music is as ubiquitous here as the traffic.

 

 

 

 

Craft Beer: Savor the Taste

If you’ve ever wanted to enjoy craft beer expertly paired with delectable gourmet bites surrounded by the stunning columns of the National Building Museum, here’s hoping you already snagged a ticket to Friday night’s SAVOR.

Tickets sold out quickly even with a short presale period, and it’s no wonder. Foodies and beer aficionados alike will get the unique opportunity to rub elbows with celebrity chefs and brewmasters while noshing on one-of-a-kind delicacies.

From 7:30-11 p.m., 90 independent breweries from across the nation will offer samples of over 180 beers.

PHOTO © BREWERS ASSOCIATION

These beers will be professionally paired with gourmet bites from some of the nation’s most celebrated chefs. While many local events focus on food or beer, few shed light on the rewarding but surprisingly difficult art of pairing the two. (Yeah, we aren’t talking about Bud Lite and chicken wings here.)

Who is the brain — or should we say, tongue — behind this endeavor? It’s Chef Adam Dulye, who even authored a book on the topic of pairing beer with food called Beer Pantry.

But with about 200 pairings, even someone with the culinary prowess of Chef Adam can’t do it alone. So he has called upon some other nationally recognized chefs, including Chef Gavin Fine of Fine Dining Restaurant Group and Chef Nathan Anda of Red Apron Butchery, to pitch in.

The menu features food as recognizable as a lobster roll (paired with an IPA) to something as unusual as corn Madeleines with chicken liver mousse (paired with a Zwickel pilsner).

This year’s commemorative beer is the Savor Sin from Chef Adam’s own Lost Abbey in San Marcos, California, featuring notes of guava and blood orange.

If you missed out this year, you won’t regret purchasing a ticket far in advance next February. With Chef Adam in the driver’s seat, SAVOR is bound to take your taste buds on a wild (but refined and tasteful) ride.

 

 

Bustin’ Loose at the Funk Parade

The Godfather of Go-Go was back in spirit on the city block that bears his name — Chuck Brown Way — for DC’s Annual Funk Parade. Marchers proceeded to swing, sashay, shake and groove through the neighborhood that was once the epicenter of DC’s funk scene in the 60s and 70s.

The parade was only one segment of a three-part event that included a day fair, which featured four live music stages and two parties, and an evening music festival, with 17 participating clubs, including Busboys and Poets, The Saloon and the Velvet Lounge. An astonishing 72 artists performed — The Chuck Brown Band, The Big Ugly Truck, Three Man Soul Machine and Mark Meadows, to name a few. And to get in, all you needed was a $10 bracelet. Not too shabby.

Go-Go, a subgenre of Funk unique to DC and popularized by guitarist Brown, is just one of the musical styles that sprung from the historically African-American U Street Corridor, where the parade and street festival took place. The celebrated neighborhood was the home of Duke Ellington and Marvin Gaye as well; the images of all three grace murals on buildings in the neighborhood.

In its sixth year, the homespun Funk Parade has hit the big time, with sponsors such as Google, Lyft and T-Mobile, but has in no way lost its soul. The marshal, in a wild wig and baggy red pants, used a megaphone to stay true to this year’s theme, Keeping the Funk Alive.

“Now it’s time for everybody to get up and join in!” he announced, as bystanders of all ages and races joined the procession of beautiful ladies who strutted in feathers and tiaras or shimmied in bright green skirts and head wraps. The up-tempo percussion section, banging everything from conga drums to cowbells, made it hard not to.

Parade organizers’ scientific term for funk is the “subatomic particle of love,” defined as, “that which makes you want to move and enjoy the company of all humans.”

If people on the sidelines weren’t affected by the former, they were unmistakably feeling the latter.

“It’s amazing to see so many different kinds of people together and everyone being peaceful and no fighting,” said Bertha Dudley, watching on 8th Street, where she’s lived for 25 years. Bertha said she has been coming to the Funk Parade since it started, and that it gets better every year.

A woman who identified herself only as Gigi was impressed with the parade.

“We’re seeing the best of DC,” Gigi said with pride. “People are coming from all the other parts of the city to be here together.”

Just as the parade neared its destination at Lincoln Theater, scattered raindrops began to fall: Up in heaven, Chuck waited until the exact moment before he turned on the sprinklers. The rain got people even closer, into the diverse eateries along the corridor and into the clubs.

The Funk never stops.

Where to Eat on Mother’s Day

You know what your mom wants for Mother’s Day, right?

Yup, food. Food she didn’t have to shop for, prepare and cook herself. Food served on dishes she didn’t have to set out and won’t have to clean up.

You could cook a meal for her — if you knew how and had the time and a dining room with a table and chairs.

If you’re lacking any of that: Good news, the Restaurant Association of Metropolitan Washington has some deals for you! Dozens of restaurants throughout the DMV are offering food and drink specials throughout the day on Mother’s Day this Sunday, May 12.

Lots of places are offering brunch. Some are two, three or four courses, and some are all you can eat. Many have bottomless mimosas, so gauge how much you think your mom wants to eat and drink and book accordingly. A few also give moms a free flower, and some have live entertainment.

City Winery is venturing out of the brunch box by hosting a class where you and your mom can learn to make three fun cocktails.

And if your mom is super healthy, take her to brunch at Gentle Harvest, a grocery store and café offering local, organic, humane proteins and produce. Not only will it be really wholesome and responsible, at $12.99 each, it will be less than half the price of the standard Mother’s Day brunch. And you still get a flower and a mimosa!

 

Happy Mother’s Day?

Mother’s Day is sort of a strange holiday; we’re thanking our mothers for concentrating all their youthful vitality into a baked potato-sized little being and then expelling it. Are we sure we should be grateful for this?

My mother always tells me, “Trust me, do NOT have kids.” I laugh and nod, because yeah, having kids is the absolute last thing I would ever do. But she’s also letting me know that her mistake — my existence — has ruined her life, which I can’t really argue with. I guess she’s still mad I crashed her car into a cemetery in high school.

She’s probably onto something, though.

One thing you notice when people you know have kids, is that no one’s life gets easier afterward. It only gets harder. But no, they always say when you point this out, aside from the sleep deprivation, premature graying, perpetual firehose-like outrush of cash and the eating of dinosaur-shaped chicken nuggets in the car on the way to karate because you don’t have time to make a real meal, no, aside from all that, it’s totally worth it when you see that kid smile at you.

To which I say, “But that kid just smiled at me, and all it cost me was a packet of stickers I bought at Target.”

But then, once in a while, you get a mother who, like my mother, admits it was probably a mistake. In those cases, you want to ask, “So why did you?”

The strange thing about having kids is, I’ve never heard anyone explain why they had kids. Usually you just get, “Because I wanted them,” which is really something you say when you get caught shoplifting a pair of headphones, not when you’re justifying the creation of another human being.

Not that simple desire isn’t adequate motivation to do something. I bought a leather jacket last week because I wanted it. But it isn’t kicking anyone’s airplane seat nonstop from NYC to Dallas.

I mean, we all know why people have kids.

mothers day

We all have, woven into our DNA, a biological imperative to transmit our genes into the future. But that’s never how parents justify having kids. They never say, “I just had this weird urge to transmit my genetic material, and then, boom!”

The disconnect between the real reasons mothers (and, yes, fathers) have kids and the reasons they give makes me wonder if there’s something necessarily self-deluding about the decision, that maybe you can’t undertake something as clearly ruinous and inadvisable as having kids without fooling yourself a little. And that when the fog clears, years later, and you see what you’ve wrought, reality kicks in.

Most people don’t admit to themselves, much less anyone else, that they feel this way. They say things like, “Who knows how my life would’ve turned out? Besides, sleeping 10 hours a night and having disposable income is overrated!” Or, “I’m so proud of my kids.” (Don’t think they’ve escaped unscathed: Was it Jung who said the biggest influence on a child is the unlived life of the parents?)

But then, once in a while, you get someone who’s honest, and comes right out with it, instead of perpetuating the whole scam. So yeah, thanks Mom, I guess. Happy Mother’s Day?

 

Cinco de Mayo Pub Crawl This Weekend

Bhlen and Joonbug are partnering to bring our users the best and easiest way to celebrate Cinco de Mayo this weekend.

Bhlen is the go-to platform for events happening throughout the DMV, while Joonbug is a premier concierge service specializing in helping people plan events in major cities throughout the U.S. We’re kicking off our partnership by uniting to promote the Cinco de Mayo Bar/Pub Crawl in Dupont Circle.

Our service helps Joonbug eliminate the need for paper maps indicating participating locations. All locations are listed under the Bar/Pub Crawl category on our platform. If you are within a 25-mile radius of either New York or D.C., click here to see the featured venues. The “click for details” tab gives you options to visit each of the venues’ websites, or you can buy tickets for the bar crawls directly through Joonbug’s website.

Participating locations include:

With a presence in over 30 cities, Joonbug will also be hosting Cinco de Mayo events this weekend in New York, Boston, Baltimore and Philadelphia.

This summer, make sure to check our website’s Bar/Pub Crawl category for more fun, as we plan to expand this exciting opportunity with Joonbug.

 

Breadsoda Welcomes the Masses

Breadsoda is a reliably comfortable Glover Park watering hole with reasonably priced drinks, friendly servers and a relaxed atmosphere.

But you don’t have to live there to fit in. What’s great about Breadsoda is that a man in a tweed jacket with elbow patches reading an actual paper book can enjoy his bourbon steps away from a group of tattooed, bearded motorcycle dudes who left their Harleys parked out front in an impressive row of gleaming chrome and heavy metal.

Breadsoda is in a Wisconsin Ave. building heavy with millennial pursuits: yoga, coffee and a hardware store where the biggest-selling items are probably stainless-steel dog bowls.

On Google Maps, Breadsoda is labeled “basement bar with games and a ’70s vibe,” and though I heard no Abba or Peter Frampton music while I was there, the yellowish cast of the lighting was definitely reminiscent of old-time rec rooms with orange shag carpeting.

My companion and I were likely the only two people there that night who were alive in the 70s, but it’s fun when young people think of your childhood as a historic time. I only wish I’d brought my David Cassidy beach towel to share some authenticity with them.

We took a seat inside at a small table with stools, where the music and the jocularity of others who had been drinking there longer had a larger impact on our ability to hear each other talk than we predicted. No matter — we moved outside to Breadsoda’s adorable and accommodating patio. Here, patrons are free to sit and enjoy their beverages while having a smoke or tending to their dog. The ashtrays on the table were a touch of nostalgia — I wondered where the bar even buys them.

The full bar offers more than 50 beers, with a selection of seasonal drafts for the connoisseurs. Not to worry — they also have Bud Light and Miller High Life for the uncomplicated imbiber.

Austin Pineapple Cider, bubbly and fruity

I started with a Blood Orange Cider and moved on to an Austin Pineapple. These fruity ciders delivered a touch of sweetness that wasn’t overwhelmingly cloying. My companion went with a Bell’s Two-Hearted Ale and followed it up with a frothy mug o’ Hofbrau.

As the evening wore on, the patio got chilly and many of the patrons headed for home, so we moved back inside. This time we made a beeline for a corner booth near the bathroom, partly because of our age, and partly because there was no speaker above the table. Here, my companion opted for a final drink, a chocolate stout. With the dim lighting, surrounded by dark wood, stone walls and brown leather, the drink was almost hard to find.

By the end of the evening, the pool and ping-pong tables were deserted, and only two overly celebratory young couples were left playing shuffleboard. Our glasses were empty and the Metro was shutting down soon, so we called it an evening.

We had five drinks for around $35 in friendly, comfortable surroundings. You should try it.


Breadsoda, 2233 Wisconsin Ave NW, Washington, DC 20007