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Staycation: Outdoor Concerts

June 1, 2012

It’s easy to pretend you’re on vacation when you’re listening to live music outside, picnicking on the lawn, gentle summer breeze rolling in just after dark…

Here are a few of my favorite places to catch an outdoor show in the DC area:

Merriweather Post Pavilion: I’ve seen a range of acts at Merriweather, from a large-scale concert by Sugarland and Kenny Chesney to Jon Stewart comedy. Best thing about Merriweather: it’s huge, so you’ll be able to get a ticket. Worst thing: you can’t bring in your own food or drinks (although they recently amended the policy so you can bring in a bottle of water) so be prepared to shell out some serious cash for dinner.

Wolf Trap: The best venue in Washington, inside or out. During the summer, the Filene Center gives artists an acoustically perfect space to perform and even seats at the back of the lawn give you a glimpse of the stage. The best thing: you can bring a picnic into the show. #win! The worst: It’s just off the Dulles Toll Road so if you’re going to a weeknight show, be prepared for traffic.

Jiffy Lube Live: Full disclosure: you couldn’t pay me to go here. It’s far away. But when big acts come to DC, Jiffy Lube Live (formerly Nissan Pavilion) is generally where they go. The venue seats 25,000. Best thing: good acts. Worst: location, location, location.

Carter Barron Amphitheater: Run by the National Park Service, Carter Barron has a little bit of everything and some of the shows are even free.   Best thing: huge range of acts, from reggae and rock to dance, jazz, soul and blues.

For free outdoor concerts all summer long, just do a Google search for your neighborhood and “free concerts.” They’re springing up all over the place, from Farragut Square and Dupont Circle to Tenleytown and Fort Dupont.

Where do you go for outdoor music in the DC area?

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One Comment leave one →
  1. emgusk permalink
    June 1, 2012 1:46 pm

    Totally agree with you about Jiffy Lube Live. In fact, I haven’t been there since it’s been called Jiffy Lube Live…The worst!

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