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Celebrate Summer with These 6 Can’t-Miss Events in the District

Summer Festivals and Fun

As June begins, we’re coming up on the very best of festival seasons. From jazz shows to sporting events, there are a million different reasons to head downtown during the summer months to enjoy an exciting array of diverse events.

DC Jazz Festival

Friday, June 7 to Sunday, June 16

Featuring more than 100 performances from the Wharf to the Kennedy Center to intimate jazz clubs across the city, this weekend-long festival is returning bigger and groovier than ever to celebrate its 15-year anniversary. Listen to sets ranging from up-and-coming artists to star performances.

The National Capital GIANT Barbecue Battle

Saturday, June 22 and Sunday, June 23

Savor Washington’s most delicious summer celebration over two days filled with amazing sights, sounds, and of course, the intoxicating aroma of mouth-watering barbecue.

Jam out to live music from over 30 bands ranging from rock to blues to go-go. Eat delicious barbeque, quench your thirst at the wine and microbrew tasting tent and watch the showdown as acclaimed barbeque titans from across the country cook-off for the nation’s best pork, chicken, rib, bbq sauce and many more categories.

Smithsonian Folklife Festival

Saturday, June 29 and Sunday, June 30

Head to the National Mall for the family-friendly Smithsonian Folklife Festival celebrating cultures across the globe. This year’s theme is focused on the social power of music and attendees will enjoy an array of exhibits from live performances to instrument-making workshops. Enjoy delicious international cuisine from numerous vendors and peruse the vibrant festival marketplace.

National Independence Day Parade

Thursday, July 4

What better way is there to celebrate our nation’s independence than by enjoying the parade at the nation’s capital? Stake out a spot along the parade route along Constitution Avenue between 7th Street NW and 17th Street NW and take in the patriotic sights and sounds in the shade of the nation’s monuments. Make a day of it and stick around for the 4th of July fireworks display.

Citi Open Tennis Tournament

Saturday, July 27 to Sunday, August 4

Reserve your seats for the District’s biggest tennis event of the year, held annually at the William H.G. Fitzgerald Tennis Center in Rock Creek Park. This year’s tournament is slated to feature some of the world’s top-rated players as well as up-and-coming phenoms like hometown hero Frances Tiafoe.   

17th Street Festival

Saturday, August 24

Now in its 19th year, the 17th Street Festival celebrates all the vibrancy and character of the Dupont Circle neighborhood. With over 100 vendors, 60 artists, live music and a kids fun zone, there’s something for everyone to enjoy.

This is just a taste of all the events and festivals in D.C. this June, so be sure to visit Washington.org to see what other events are on tap this summer in the nation’s capital.