Use this weekend to have some fun, before hunkering down for final exams, by jumping into the holiday spirit with lights, festivities and an overwhelming amount of chocolate.
Light Up the Wharf
Early sunsets are only good for one thing this time of year – festive lights. The newly opened District Wharf will light its 55-foot Christmas tree Friday and illuminate the waterfront with thousands of lights at this inaugural holiday tradition. Liven your spirits by indulging in treats like hot chocolate and s’mores by the fire pit and listening to local bands play live music.
District Square, 735 Water St. SW. 5 to 8 p.m. Free.
Smithsonian Holiday Festival on the National Mall
Visit the Smithsonian’s National Museum of American History to participate in the annual two-day festival to kick off December with holiday food, activities and performances. This event includes learning about the history of chocolate through demonstrations and sampling American Heritage Chocolate recipes. You can also see performances by the U.S. Air Force Band’s Singing Sergeants and Airmen of Note. The event will also include regular and 3D movie screenings of the popular holiday favorite “The Polar Express” for $12 in the museum at 1:30 and 3:30 p.m.
National Museum of American History, 1300 Constitution Ave. NW. 10 a.m to 5:30 p.m. Free.
Annapolis Chocolate Binge Festival
If you’re still craving chocolate this weekend – even after a Thanksgiving break full of eating – take a trip to Annapolis, Md. for their chocolate festival. Spend the day sipping “hot coco from the Popo,” which will be served by area police officers, and strolling through the Annapolis Arts District on West Street. The street will be lined with more than 20 local and regional chocolate venders selling a delicious assortment of sweets. After you cure your sweet tooth, you can visit the more than 30 local artisans selling homemade crafts such as jewelry, pottery and candles. Santa Claus will even be there to accept toys, clothes and hats for the We Care and Friends Holiday Party to donate to the local homeless and kids in need.
West and Calvert Streets, Annapolis, Md. 12 to 5 p.m. Tickets $6.27. Donations appreciated.