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Serving the GW Community since 1904

The GW Hatchet

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Where to spend your last week in the District

Cameron Lancaster | Assistant Photo Editor
Cameron Lancaster | Assistant Photo Editor

Media Credit: Cameron Lancaster | Assistant Photo Editor
Beyond M Street and the Georgetown Waterfront, years of grafitti cover the cliffs above the Key Bridge Boathouse.

Tatiana Cirisano | Contributing Culture Editor

For some graduates, the days leading up to Commencement will be some of their last in D.C. before they move home or head to a new city. The bucket list of places to visit in the District is long and up for debate, but here are some opportunities you won’t find anywhere else.

Jam to live bands at Madam’s Organ
Located in the heart of Adams Morgan, the blues bar features live music with a different genre every day of the week. The rickety building is decked out in vintage tokens, rough-hewed wood and wacky taxidermy, giving it a bluesy, off-beat charm. Five bars are spread across four levels, which offer live bands, pool tables, “drunkaoke” and a rooftop lounge. Ditch the flashy club scene for a laid-back night.

Madam’s Organ, 2461 18th St. NW. Open Monday through Thursday 5 p.m. to 2 a.m., Friday through Saturday 5 p.m. to 3 a.m. and Sunday 5 p.m. to 2 a.m.

Cycle across the city with Capital Bikeshare
Take a break from Uber for the day and grab a bike instead. Your wallet (and your waistline) will thank you. After four years of exploring D.C., it’s hard to miss the rows of shiny red bikes that line the sidewalk every few blocks. With Capital Bikeshare, riders can rent bikes on the spot for 24 hours ($7 plus additional fees per hour). Don’t worry about finding your way back – users can drop off their bikes at any of the 300 stations across D.C., Virginia and Maryland. You could even try riding to the next stop on our list.

Climb to Georgetown’s lookout
Baked & Wired isn’t the only reason to wander toward the waterfront. Duck out of Georgetown’s M Street shops and travel west on K Street. You’ll find a bridge with a rickety stone staircase off Water Street. Climb to the top for a scenic view of the Potomac River. The ledge, which sits above the Key Bridge Boathouse, is marked by years of graffiti. Though the view is jaw-dropping, visitors be warned: The cliff is perilous at best, because, well, it’s a cliff. But don’t let its Foursquare name (“Dangerous Cliff over Potomac”) deter you.

Laugh off stress at D.C. Improv Comedy Club
Don’t miss the chance to see a performance at the famous club, a comedy-school-turned-restaurant that hosts professional comedians nightly in two showrooms. Backed by a brick wall reminiscent of old-school comedy, renowned comedians like Ellen DeGeneres, Brian Regan and Dave Chapelle have graced the club’s stage since it opened more than 20 years ago.

Grab tickets ($20, two tickets minimum) for comedian Aaron Karo’s hour-long special May 14. The bestselling author known for his email column, Ruminations, will chronicle the absurdity of college and post-graduation life. Check out the club’s schedule for more options.

D.C. Improv Comedy Club, 1140 Connecticut Ave. NW

Pick up a library card from the Library of Congress
Grab this last piece of D.C. memorabilia before you depart. The Library of Congress issues free reader cards and all you need is a government-issued ID (but just pretend it’s way more exclusive). Card-seekers can register in person at the library’s Reader Registration Station, where staff take your photograph, digitize your signature and give you the printed card. The card grants access to the library’s stunning reading rooms. Keep it as a souvenir or simply use it as another way to brag about your four years living in the nation’s capital.

The Library of Congress, 10 First St. NE. Reader Registration Station located in the Madison Building, Room LM 140 on the first floor. Registration hours 8:30 a.m. to 4:30 p.m., Monday through Saturday.

Be inspired by slam poetry at Busboys and Poets
Named for poet Langston Hughes, who worked as a busboy at D.C.’s Wardman Park Hotel in the 1920s, Busboys and Poets is a haven for poetry readers and writers. The building itself is a work of art, combining a bookstore, stage and restaurant to create a space where customers can hear local poets read original work. The company is famous for their slam poetry events, which are high-energy, competitive poetry readings where the winning poet is chosen by the audience. Check out the venue’s upcoming open-mic nights on May 13 from 9 to 11 p.m. and May 18 from 5 to 7 p.m.

Busboys and Poets, 2021 14th St., NW. Tickets: $5

Channel your inner Frank Underwood with a tour of the Capitol Building
End your college years with a tour of the Capitol building, the last unchecked box on this bucket list. You’ll begin your tour with a short introductory film and then a host will guide you through the Crypt, the Rotunda and National Statuary Hall, making all your “House of Cards” dreams (almost) a reality. Did we mention tours are free? Make sure to reserve online, as spots fill up fast for this one-of-a-kind experience.

U.S. Capitol Visitor Center, located beneath the East Front plaza of the Capitol at First and East Capitol streets. Tours conducted Monday through Saturday 8:50 a.m. to 3:20 p.m.

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