DC WishBook
CHECK IN DATE:
NUMBER OF NIGHTS:
For Phone Reservations Call 800-422-8644
 

100 Free Things: African American Culture

  • PRINT

1) Stand in the footsteps of great abolitionist Frederick Douglass at Cedar Hill, his renovated former home. While there, take in a great aerial view of the city. Tours are free with a small booking fee.

2) Spend an inspiring moment at Freedom Plaza across the street from the Willard InterContinental Washington, where Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. wrote his famous "I Have a Dream" speech. Then head over to the Lincoln Memorial to stand where he delivered it. After that, visit the new Martin Luther King, Jr. Memorial on the Tidal Basin. The memorial features a statue of the famous civil rights leader flanked by a wall featuring inscriptions of some of Dr. King's most famous quotes.

3) Explore Cultural Tourism DC's African American Heritage Trail to learn about lesser-known sites of significance to DC's black history. Consider the house in LeDroit Park where accomplished poet and writer Paul Lawrence Dunbar lived after his marriage to wife Alice in 1898, or The True Reformer Building on U Street, an architectural testament to black economic development. Completed in 1903, it was conceived, financed, designed, built and patronized by African Americans.

4) Stroll through the U Street Corridor to reflect on yesterday's "Black Broadway" and see venues like Bohemian Caverns which played host to musical performances by Ella Fitzgerald, Duke Ellington, Dizzy Gillespie and more. While you're there, stop by the African American Civil War Memorial.

5) Have breakfast at Busboys & Poets - named for Langston Hughes, who worked as a busboy at the Wardman Park Hotel (now Marriott Wardman Park) in DC before gaining recognition as a poet - on a Sunday morning, or visit any Tuesday night at 9 p.m. to hear spoken word at the venue's open-mic night.

6) Experience history through visual art at the Howard University Gallery of Art. Located on campus, the gallery's African American Art Collection is free and one of the most comprehensive representations of black artists in existence.

7) Consider a cupcake ($3.25 each) from Cake Love, a black-owned bakery on U Street with an owner who gave up a successful career in law and replaced it with one in baking.

8) Feel the city's soul power at one of DC's many nightspots that offer entry free of charge, including Marvin (inspired by Marvin Gaye), OYA or Tabaq Bistro.

9) Attend a Sunday-morning church service at Metropolitan African Methodist Episcopal Church, the national church of the AME denomination.

10) A taste for soul food should lead you to Oohhs and Aahhs near Howard University, where you can get a soulful meal of ribs with housemade barbecue sauce, macaroni and cheese, and collard greens for under $10.

Tour the former home of abolotionist Frederick Douglas at Cedar Hill. The restored home offers insights into his life and work, as well as astounding views of the city from his hilltop home.
Tour the former home of abolotionist Frederick Douglas at Cedar Hill. The restored home offers insights into his life and work, as well as astounding views of the city from his hilltop home.
1 of 4