Brain Food
1. "Dorothy Parker's Last Call": Poet, critic, author, activist and member of the infamous Algonquin Round Table, Dorothy Parker delighted in skewering the culture of the early twentieth century. This original one-woman show is a dynamic exploration of the life of America's first lady of wit.

Where: Busboys and Poets, 1025 Fifth St. NW

When: 10 p.m. Saturday; 6 p.m. Sunday

Info: $15; part of Fringe Festival; 866-811-4111;;

2. "Shooting in the Wild: An Insider's Account of Making Movies in the Animal Kingdom": By Chris Palmer, foreword by Jane Goodall. Chris Palmer is on hand to discuss his newest book.

Where: Politics and Prose Bookstore, 5015 Connecticut Ave. NW

When: 1 p.m. Saturday

Info: Free; 202-364-1919;

3. Book signing: Ford's Theatre Society presents a "Meet the Scholar" book signing event. The followed noted authors and historians will be on hand for this event: Jean H. Baker, Gabor Boritt, Michael Burlingame, Catherine Clinton, Harold Holzer, Matthew Pinsker, James Swanson and Douglas Wilson.

Where: Ford's Theatre, 511 10th St. NW

When: 2:30 to 3:30 p.m. Saturday

Info: Free, no reservations required;

4. "At the Bottom of Shakespeare's Ocean": Steve Mentz, curator of the Folger exhibition Lost at Sea, discusses the role of the ocean in Shakespeare's plays.

Where: The Folger Shakespeare Library, 201 E. Capitol St. SE

When: Doors open at 7 p.m., talk begins at 7:30 p.m. Tuesday

Info: Free; 202-675-0326;

5. "Macbeth": This retelling of Shakespeare's play about ambition, greed and the supernatural features live music, drumming and Capoeira, a Brazilian art form that combines elements of martial arts, music and dance.

Where: Redrum and the Bedroom at Fort Fringe, 612 L St. NW

When: 8 p.m. Saturday; 4 p.m. Sunday; 10:30 p.m. July 15; 7 p.m. July 17; 9:30 p.m. July 18

Info: $15; 866-811-4111; part of the Fringe Festival;

1. "Fort Stevens Day": Join the Park Rangers of Rock Creek Park for the annual commemoration of the Battle of Fort Stevens, the only Civil War battle that took place in D.C. Programs include Junior Ranger activities for children ages 5 and older, living history presentations about the battle and dramatic storytelling about historic figure Elizabeth Thomas, who was a member of the Brightwood community. Rain would cancel this event. Call 202-426-7723 for details.

Where: 13th and Quakenbos streets NW (13th becomes Piney Branch Road)

When: 11 a.m. to 3 p.m. Saturday

Info: Free; 202-895-6070; reservations necessary: 202-362-0117;

2. "Wild Ones: Stream Sources": Where does Gulf Branch come from? Find out as you trace it to its roots. Where do all those tunnels go?

Where: Meet at Gulf Branch Nature Center, 3608 Military Road, Arlington

When: 1 to 2 p.m. Sunday

Info: $3; 703-228-6535, register at 703-228-4747; program 643520-02

3. "Civil War Discovery: Artillery": Learn to work as a team to load and aim a replica Civil War cannon. You'll hear about the various artillery pieces used in the Civil War and "bombard" a replica fort.

Where: Meet at Fort C.F. Smith Park, 2411 N. 24th St., Arlington

When: 12 to 1 p.m. Sunday

Info: $5; register at 703-228-4747 or call 703-243-4342 for details; program 644430-02

4. Second Annual Firefly Festival: Celebrate summer's natural night lights! Enjoy many activities related to those critters that light up the night. Events include bug hunts, games, crafts, walks, contests and talks about fireflies. Bring your picnic blanket and dinner to enjoy. For all ages.

Where: Fort C.F Smith Park, 2411 N. 24th St., Arlington

When: 7:30 to 9:30 p.m. Sunday

Info: $5, $20 per family; register at 703-228-6535

5. "Billy B Rocks the World: The Natural Science Song and Dance Man": Billy B's performances burst with energetic songs and dances about swamps, estuaries, biodiversity, rainforests, geology and natural wonders. Billy knows that kids love to move and make noise! He creates kinetic learning experiences through original and outlandish melodies so that children can dance and sing along. For all ages.

Where: Ripley Center, Discovery Theatre, 1100 Jefferson Drive SW

When: 10:15 a.m. and 11:30 a.m. July 13 to 16

Info: $4 to $6; 202-633-6060;

1. "From Impressionism to Modernism: The Chester Dale Collection": Prior to strengthening the National Gallery's holdings with their 1962 bequest, Wall Street Banker Chester Dale and his wife Maud acquired a remarkable collection of French and American paintings from the 1920s through the 1950s. It closes this weekend, and it isn't to be missed.

Where: National Gallery of Art, Fourth Street and Constitution Avenue NW

When: CLOSING Saturday

Info: Free; 202-737-4215;

2. "Body of Work: New Perspectives on Figure Painting": Sixteen new paintings from dynamic new painters in seven states and the U.K. comprise this latest edition of the National Museum of Women in the Arts' biannual showcase of emerging female artists.

Where: National Museum of Women in the Arts, 1250 New York Ave. NW

When: Through Sept. 12

Info: 202-783-5000;

3. "Georgia June Goldberg: Emergence": San Francisco artist Georgia June Goldberg's 130-foot by 30-foot opus is the largest installation in the Katzen Museum's sculpture garden, consisting of a series of white wooden rhomboids sheathed in ice-blue netting.

Where: The American University Museum at the Katzen Arts Center, 4400 Massachusetts Ave.

When: Through Aug. 8

Info: Free; 202-885-1300;

4. "Emma Tapley: New Paintings": Emma Tapley brings an abstractionist's perception of nature to her verdant landscapes.

Where: Hemphill Fine Arts, 1515 14th St. NW

When: Through Aug. 7

Info: Free; 202-234-5601;

5. "Informed Design": This exhibit explores how art can interact with the environment in which its displayed.

Where: Long View Gallery, 1302 Ninth St. NW

When: Through Aug. 1

Info: Free; 202-232-4788;

1. "Bowie Baysox Pillow Fight": The game between the Bowie Baysox, the AA affiliate of the Baltimore Orioles, and the Trenton Thunder on Friday is a BYOP affair: Bring Your Own Pillow. The Baysox host Bowie's largest pillow fight once the game's final out is recorded. Spill onto the field from the Prince George's County Stadium seats and let the feathers fly in the outfield.

Where: Prince George's Stadium, 4101 N.E. Crain Highway, Bowie

When: after 7:05 p.m. game Friday

Info: 301-805-6000;

2. "Harlem Mart 125: The American Dream": Screening of a documentary about the revitalization of 125th St. in New York. Part of the "Movies with a Mission" series.

Where: Alexandria Black History Museum, 902 Wythe St., Alexandria

When: 4:30 p.m. Saturday

Info: Free; 703-746-4356; (click on Visitors' Tab)

3. "Cinema al Fresco aka Staycation Series": This week: "Everybody's Fine" ("Stanno Tutti Bene")

Where: Atlas Arts Center, 1333 H St. NE

When: 8 p.m. Saturday; through Sept. 4

Info: $6; 202-399-7993;

4. "Johnny Meister and the Stitch": Rosemary Jenkinson's brutally honest, dark comedy unfolds at breakneck speed in this play about the youths who populate the streets and alleys of Belfast.

Where: Solas Nua, at Flashpoint, 916 G St. NW

When: 8 p.m. Thursday to Friday; 7 and 10 p.m. Saturday; through July 17

Info: $21; 202-315-1305;

5. "Gardener's Favorite: USBG Containers": Stroll through the U.S. Botanic Garden with Margaret Atwell, USBG gardener. Learn about how to use color, design and location of your containers for maximum impact. Portions of this tour may be held outside in the garden. Please wear sunscreen and protective clothing and bring water.

Where: United States Botanic Gardens Conservatory, 100 Maryland Ave. SW

When: 10 to 11 a.m. July 15

Info: Free; register at 202-225-1116; program TH071510;

1. "The Turk in Italy": Rossini's comic opera about a writer in search of the perfect plot. Performed by the Wolf Trap Opera Company.

Where: The Barns of Wolf Trap

When: 8 p.m. Friday, 3 p.m. Sunday

Info: $32 to $72; 877-965-3872;

2. Joan Armatrading: The prolific singer/songwriter/guitarist performs in concert for two emotional evenings.

Where: The Birchmere

When: 7:30 p.m. Thursday to Friday

Info: $55; 703-549-7500;

3. Marcus Johnson Project: The cool jazz keyboardist takes over the house for four fabulous evenings.

Where: Blues Alley

When: 8 and 10 p.m. Thursday to Saturday

Info: $27.50; 202-337-4141;

4. Stephanie Mills: The winner of Grammy and American Music Awards, who starred as Dorothy in "The Wiz," for which she received a Drama Desk nomination, sings music from her latest recording, "Breathless."

Where: The Birchmere

When: 7:30 p.m. Sunday

Info: $69.50; 703-549-7500;

5. Oleta Adams: Twenty years after being discovered by Tears for Fears and starting on her way, she performs songs filled with hope and joy fused with soul from her latest album, "Let's Stay Here."

Where: The Birchmere

When: 7:30 p.m. Saturday

Info: $39.50; 703-549-7500;

1. Alexandria's Birthday Celebration includes fun for the entire family, including children's activities, community exhibits, a performance by the 257th Army Band and birthday cake. The highlight of the event is a concert by the Alexandria Symphony Orchestra with Maestro Kim Allen Kluge presenting "Jazz & the Alexandria Symphony Orchestra." Fireworks close out the celebration.

Where: Oronoco Bay Park, 100 Madison St.; Potomac River between Fairfax, Pendleton and Madison Streets

When: celebration begins at 4 p.m.; fireworks at 9:30 p.m. July 10 (in event of rain, fireworks will be rescheduled for July 11)

Info: Free;

2. Experience Mount Vernon by Bike and Boat: Bike and Roll Alexandria will fit you with a bike and give you a lock, helmet and trail map to navigate your way along the Mount Vernon Trail to George Washington's home. Spend the day exploring the expansive grounds, galleries and theaters. In the afternoon, board the Miss Christin for a narrated boat cruise back to Old Town. Price includes bike rental/bike pick-up at Mount Vernon, estate admission and the return boat ticket.

Where: Begin at Bike and Roll, Old Town Alexandria, 1 Wales Alley, Alexandria

When: See Web site for times and dates.

Info: $18 to $48; reservations required at 703-548-7655;

3. "Artillery & Infantry Drills": Why should the kids have all the fun? Using wooden rifles and Fort C. F. Smith's cannon you'll have a chance to learn how artillery was fired and how the infantry learned their basic drills, including firing and loading during the Civil War. You'll also discuss the artillery's and infantry's roles in defending Washington during battle.

Where: Meet at Fort C. F. Smith Park, 2411 N. 24th St., Arlington

When: 2 to 3 p.m. Sunday

Info: $5; register at 703-228-4747; program 644440-02

4. Happy Hour at Cantina: The waterfront bar offers daily drink specials, plus happy hour for dogs on Mondays.

Where: Cantina Marina, 600 Water St. SW

When: 11:30 a.m. to midnight Friday to Saturday; 11:30 a.m. to 10 p.m., Sunday to Thursday

Info: 202-554-8396;

5. Weekday and Evening Boat Rides: Join a park naturalist for a historical tour of the Anacostia River on a 40-seat pontoon boat. Search for wildlife and learn about the river. All ages welcome. Reservations not necessary.

Where: Bladensburg Waterfront Park, 4601 Annapolis Road, Bladensburg

When: Weekday rides -- noon to 12:45 p.m. Tuesday to Friday through Oct. 29; Evening rides -- 5 to 5:45 p.m. Saturday to Sunday through Sept. 26.

Info: Free; 301-779-0371;

1. "Mamma Mia!": A musical about a mother, a daughter, three possible dads and a trip down the aisle you'll never forget. More than 40 million people around the world have fallen for this tale of love and friendship.

Where: Filene Center, Wolf Trap, 1551 Trap Road, Vienna

When: 8 p.m. Thursday to Sunday; 2 p.m. Saturday to Sunday

Info: $20 to $80; 877-965-3872;

2. "Forever Plaid": Before the Jonas Brothers or the Backstreet Boys, there were four guys destined to harmonize their way to greatness: Sparky, Smudge, Jinx and Frankie. The "flip side" of the 1950s rock 'n' roll revolution, these boys represented innocence and traditional family values. Experience a flashback to the 1950s.

Where: Olney Theatre Center, 2001 Olney-Sandy Spring Road, Olney

When: Through Aug. 1

Info: $26; 301-924-3400;

3. "Babes in Arms": The American Century Theater's Rescues series presents a concert version of the joyous Rodgers and Hart musical, which includes the standards "Where or When" and "My Funny Valentine".

Where: American Century Theater, Theater II, Gunston Arts Center, 2700 S. Lang St., Arlington

When: Thursday to Saturday

Info: $15; 703-998-4555;

4. "A Lovely Sunday for Creve Coeur": Set in the West End of St. Louis in the mid-1930s at Creve Coeur lake, this play, featuring four of Tennessee Williams' most engaging female characters, skillfully explores the need for human connection.

Where: Quotidian Theatre, The Writer's Center, Bethesda

When: Through Aug. 8

Info: $20 to $25; 301-816-1023;

5. "Passing Strange": This musical follows a rock musician on his quest for authenticity. From singer-songwriter and performance artist Stew comes a new kind of musical.

Where: The Studio Theatre, 1501 14th St. NW

When: Opens July 14; through Aug. 8

Info: $33 to $43; 202-232-7267;