DC Artswatch: MLK Day, Inauguration, Notre-Dame, Presidents’ Day, Year of the Ox

Martin Luther King Jr. Day

The 40th annual Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. Parade, held on the federal holiday that honors the slain civil rights leader, will go virtual this year, with details to follow. Also on Monday, Jan. 18, the 15th annual Peace Walk, at 10 a.m. — along Martin Luther King Jr. Avenue in Southeast D.C. — and Peace Rally, at 11 a.m., will take place both virtually and in person, with limited participation. For more information, visit mlkholidaydc.org.

Martin Luther King Jr. at the 1963 March on Washington for Jobs and Freedom. NARA.

Inauguration History Programs

The White House Historical Association will present two free online programs on Tuesday, Jan. 19, the day before Joe Biden’s inauguration. At noon, Colleen Shogan, Ph.D., will give an overview of inaugural addresses and explain why the best regarded American speeches are considered superior. At 4 p.m., the discussion “A Closer Look at Presidential Transitions and Inaugurations” will explore the history and traditions of presidential transitions. RSVP at whitehousehistory.org.

Notre-Dame Organist Meetup

In partnership with other meetup groups, the DC Classical Music Meetup is hosting a free online event featuring Olivier Latry, organist of Notre-Dame de Paris, on Jan. 30 at 10 a.m. (our time, not Paris time). The program will include archived performances, a videotaped tour of the organ — which was not damaged in the 2019 fire, but is being dismantled and cleaned — and a Q&A with Latry about the cathedral’s renovation. To participate, visit meetup.com.

Organist Olivier Latry.

Lunar New Year Talk

On Wednesday, Feb. 10, at 6 p.m., two days before the Year of the Ox begins, the National Museum of Asian Art will host a free talk, “Luck and Fortune: Lunar New Year Food Traditions.” Jan Stuart, Ph.D., Melvin R. Seiden Curator of Chinese Art, will discuss New Year-related works of art, then Lydia Chang, daughter and business partner of restaurateur Peter Chang, will share stories about the celebratory dishes her family has cooked for generations. To register, visit asia.si.edu.

Ceramic ox and cart with miniature dwelling. Courtesy National Museum of Asian Art.

Presidents’ Day and Washington’s Birthday

Mount Vernon, the first president’s estate, located 13 miles south of Washington, D.C., will celebrate the Presidents’ Day federal holiday with free admission on Monday, Feb. 15, from 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. Nonmembers can reserve tickets starting Feb. 12. The museum will also present a virtual 289th birthday party for George Washington on Monday, Feb. 22, at 7 p.m., with performances and readings. Admission is by donation of $5 or more. Information is available at mountvernon.org.




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