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Dave Arlington

Class Up Your Weekend

 

This weekend, what is the opposite of partying in the Preakness infield?

The answer might actually be found in the outfield at Nationals Park. Here are a few ways to have an art-filled weekend:

The Washington National Opera production of Show Boat at the Kennedy Center will be simulcast free at, yup, Nationals Park at 7 pm Saturday - with gates opening at 5. Not only will the Anacostia be the backdrop as Ol' Man River keeps rolling along, Opera in the Outfield also features the classic Bugs Bunny cartoon What's Opera, Doc?

Saturday is Art Museum Day across the country. In our area, admission is free at The Phillips Collection and the National Museum of Women in the Arts.

If Sunday turns out to be a rainy day, go indoors and enjoy the majesty of the Washington National Cathedral in both sight and sound, with a pipe organ recital beginning at 5:15.

The free Gaithersburg Book Festival takes place Saturday from 10 am to 6 pm on the grounds of City Hall. Featured authors include two-time National Book Award finalist Adele Griffin and 2013 Newbery Medal winner Sheila Turnage. Plus, as you listen to WASH-FM's Best of the 80s Weekend, you can head to the Book Festival to meet four original MTV VJs who have written a memoir about their experiences caled VJ: The Unplugged Adventures of MTV's First Wave.

Another class act is the Northern Virginia Fine Arts Festival, through Sunday at the Greater Reston Art Center.

At the other end of the spectrum is some pure schmaltz.

On Saturday, Sweden hosts the annual Eurovision Song Contest. European nations have been competing in this thing since 1956 - and an estimated 130 million people will be watching. You can watch along in HD in DC at a viewing party from 2 to 7 pm at the House of Sweden.

Of the singers representing the 26 Eurovision finalists, you will probably only recognize one - and she is an 80s icon. Bonnie Tyler is representing the UK. Winning songs do not fare so well in the United States, ABBA's Waterloo being the exception. Other singers you've heard of who have performed the winning songs in the past include Celine Dion, who took the title for Switzerland in 1988, and Katrina and the Waves, who sang for the UK in 1997.

Have a great weekend!

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