Spring Cocktail Menus, Last Ice Skating of the Season, and More DC Weekend Fun

Fun things to do in Washington DC this weekend, including boozy ice cream and new exhibits.

Things to Do in DC This Weekend
New spring cocktails at St. Anselm | Photos credit: Hallie Sharpless, photo courtesy of St. Anselm
New spring cocktails at St. Anselm | Photos credit: Hallie Sharpless, photo courtesy of St. Anselm

It seems that the less that gets done in congress, the more starts happening in the city. So while the government might shut down, our social calendars are picking up.

A drag show, a genre-blending musical performance, boozy ice cream, and cheap martinis—this sure is going to be an eclectic weekend. You might not be able to pack it all in, but there’s definitely something for everyone over the next few days. Along with the new James Bond exhibit at the International Spy Museum, here’s everything fun you can do in DC this weekend.

Things to Do in Washington DC This Weekend
New spring cocktails at St. Anselm | Photos credit: Hallie Sharpless, photo courtesy of St. Anselm

Drinking events in DC

March 13
Union Market, $12 and up
Spring has sprung (well, almost), and so too has a whole new cocktail menu at St. Anselm. The Americana-chic restaurant that’s a favorite for pre-theater drinks at the Angelika or Songbyrd just unveiled their extensive new seasonal cocktail menu. We love the classic 2:1 martini as well as their cheeky XXX Dirty (which at $12 they specify is crafted with “cheap vodka”), as well as new springtime additions like the amaro-based Julep, the scotch and ginger Hot Penicillin, and the bourbon-based Gold Rush. For something a little softer, the wine-list has a super interesting dry white madeira as well as Zero Proof mocktails and an NA IPA.

March 2, 2 pm
Penn Quarter, $1 and up
Ice cream plus booze combine in one glorious indulgence at Tipsy Scoop, the new 21+ ice cream store that’s opening its doors in DC this Saturday. Tipsy Scoop’s DC “barlour” is the first to open outside of New York, their homebase, and we have a feeling there’ll be a permanent line to get in. The first 25 people to arrive at the shop on their opening day will be treated to a $1 scoop. Don’t miss the only-in-DC flavor, Cherry Blossom Old Fashioned Ice Cream, which is infused with Japanese-whiskey.

March 3, 5 pm–7 pm
Shaw, $36
DC-based food and drink writer Travis Mitchell is celebrating the launch of his new book, DC Cocktails—which contains over 100 cocktail recipes inspired by the capital city—with, what else, a cocktail party this Sunday. Grab a ticket to the shindig, which will be held at Ambar’s Shaw location, and includes two of the book’s featured cocktails.

Things to Do in Washington DC This Weekend
Bond In Motion at the International Spy Museum | Photo credit: John Robinson for the International Spy Museum

Cultural events in DC

March 1–3
South of the National Mall, $12
One thing we might all be able to agree on is that James Bond had some pretty cool cars (and motorcycles and subs and boats). Now, for the first time, nearly 20 of 007’s kitted-out spy-mobiles are on display together in a sleek, interactive new exhibit at the International Spy Museum. Stop in to see pieces used on sets of decades worth of Bond films, as well as the classic silver Aston Martin that lives permanently in the museum’s atrium. The exhibit is $12 or $10 if you add it on to a ticket to check out the rest of the museum.

March 13, 11:30 am–7 pm
Penn Quarter, Free
You might not know the work of photographer George Hurrell, but you likely know his subjects, stars of Hollywood’s golden age of glamor. As a studio photographer for the famed movie studios Metro-Goldwyn-Mayer and Warner Bros., Hurrell captured the portraits of luminaries like Clark Gable, Greta Garbo, and Joan Crawford. The National Portrait Gallery has gathered a collection of these iconic images for their new exhibition, which opens on Friday. Just walking through the galleries is a nostalgic trip through silver screen legend.

March 1, 8 pm
Strathmore, $28 and up
It’s a little bit of a drive, but if there was ever a reason, this is it. The internationally acclaimed, Kyiv-based ensemble will be taking to the stage at Strathmore and it promises to be a multi-sensory, genre-blending experience. Known for their incorporation of traditional folk ballads and avant-garde sounds, DakhaBrakha has developed a following far outside Ukraine, yet seeing them in person remains a rare opportunity.

March 2, 8 pm
Shaw, $39 and up
Head to the Howard Theatre on Saturday night for a light of electrifying drag performances and all-night dancing. DC Queens Cake Pop!, Crystal Edge, Dreux Sidora and Crimsyn will be among those who take to the stage. Following the show there’ll be an open dance floor at the helm of DJ Boyyyish. Guests are encouraged to don their best all purple outfits.

March 23, 10 am–5 pm
Dupont Circle, $20
A major retrospective of the post-Impressionist painter Pierre Bonnard is opening at the Phillips Collection this weekend. The exhibit gathers works by the French painter from museums across the US and Europe, as well as from private collections, and traces the arc of Bonnard’s works from his landscape paintings to more introspective interiors.

Things to Do in Washington DC This Weekend
Photo courtesy of the National Gallery of Art

Family-Friendly events in DC

March 1–3
The National Mall, $12 and up
The magical ice rink in the Sculpture Garden of the National Gallery of Art is about to close for this season, so this is your last weekend to take a graceful (or semi-graceful) swirl across the ice. Believe us, come summer when DC’s infamous humidity returns, you’ll be dreaming of the days of practicing your double axels. Don’t forget to grab a hot chocolate before or after your skate at the rink’s Pavilion Café.

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Madeline writes about all things Washington DC for Thrillist. Originally from New York City, she’s called DC home since the start of the pandemic. When she’s not at home in the district, you can find her chasing stories all over the world. Her bylines include The Washington PostCondé Nast Traveler, and Travel + Leisure. Follow her on IG.