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What DC Locals Know...About September

Wednesday, August 31st, 2016 at 7:34pm Laura Gray

Smithsonian Castle

 Locals know September is one of the best times of the year to be in DC. It’s warm enough to be comfortable outside but has the occasional autumn day that will have everyone digging out their first light sweater (just you wait: the first day it’s in the mid 60s it’s a safe bet you’ll see at least one person breaking out their fall colors. You might even see flannel.)

Since September is also a time for learning, locals know we enjoy one of the best learning institutions around: the Smithsonian. A collection of 19 museums – and a zoo – it’s the largest museum and research complex in the world. Many of us also pass by at least one of the facilities every day.

You can refresh your memory of Smithsonian facilities here: Smithsonian facilities, but there’s also some features you may not be familiar with. The Smithsonian Associates ( is a series of educational programs that you do NOT have to be a Smithsonian member to enjoy. Ready to educate yourself on some of the inside information about our nation’s capital? Check these offerings out:

-  Architecture on the Nation’s Front Lawn. The original plan for the National Mall was developed in 1791, but it’s really the McMillan Plan from 1902 that shapes the Mall’s design and its history. 2 ½ hours of a walking explanation about how DC’s most famous public space took shape. 

-  In Rock Creek Park, try Washington’s True Wild Side or A Rock Creek Tour to (re)familiarize yourself with some of the prettiest area scenery. Both sessions are in late September, cool enough to enjoy a walk through the woods. 

Welcome to Georgetown, part of a larger “lunchtime series” focused on specific neighborhoods and historic sites within them. You can catch the whole series or just individual lectures and tours. 

-  As we get closer to October, Tales and Tombstones (walking tours in Rock Creek and Arlington National Cemeteries) might be in order. These two separate tours offer a deeper look at noteworthy features at each site. 

-  Are you a fan of the TV series House of Cards? You can take A House of Cards Walking Tour, which passes by many of the sites featured in the show, famous and lesser known. 

-  And after all that, need a break from serious topics for a while? Get a good laugh at political expense with The Second City’s Free Speech (While Supplies Last) show on September 23. This is THAT Second City comedy troupe – the one originally based in Chicago. Fair warning: this one probably isn’t for the kids. And only the 9pm show is still available.


Want to know more about living, working and enjoying the DC area? Ask a local who knows, and work with a different class of real estate advisor. Ask me, at

*special thanks to the Smithsonian Associates program guide, August 2016.

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