International Events

An Insider’s Guide to the Passport DC event

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Written by Jeonghyun Kim 

The Passport DC is an annual pilgrimage for cultural event seekers, not only to celebrate the annual cultural festival but also to take pride in Washington D.C.’s status as an international city.

The embassy row has come to symbolize the international city in the United States. Passport DC 2015 is a month-long journey around the DC’s international diplomatic community.

Almost 40 embassies will open their doors to DC visitors and residents from Saturday, May 2. There shall be 31 days for programs by people of 70 embassies and more than 40 cultural institutions in D.C.

There will be food, art exhibits, and performances for people to appreciate the festival even more.

Here are some of the highlights of the upcoming festival:
Saturday, May 1 and 2: Festival Kick off

The Passport DC will kick off with DC Flower Mart at the Washington National Cathedral.

Saturday, May 2:

This “Passport DC” will feature inspired diverse art and musical performances representing international culture from 10 a.m. to 4:00 p.m. near the Dupont Circle. This is a free event.

Embassies participating previously include the African Union Mission, Argentina, Australia, Bahrain, Bangladesh, Bolivia, Botswana, Brazil, Colombia, Costa Rica, Ecuador, Egypt, Ethiopia, Fiji, Ghana, Iraq, Japan, Kazakhstan, Kenya, Korea, League of Arab States, Malaysia, Mexico, Mozambique, Nepal, Peru, Philippines, Saudi Arabia, South Africa, Sri Lanka, Thailand, Turkey, Ukraine, Venezuela, and Zambia.

Friday, May 7th: Alan Choo and Iris Hsu

Virtusos violinist, Alsn Choo, performs his music as a solo and collaborative artist in his native Singapore and across the globe at the Embassy of Singapore, 3501 International Place NW. $95 (includes buffet dinner and wine), 7:30 p.m. Enthusiasts may get their tickets here.

Saturday, May 9th: Shortcut to Europe: European Union Embassies’ Open House

Join the embassies of the EU members’ booth to enjoy the authentic music, dance, food and art. Visit the website for more information.

Participants in the embassy open houses include Croatia, Denmark, Finland, Hungary, Latvia, Malta, Portugal, Slovenia, United Kingdom, Austria, Cyprus, Estonia, France, Germany, Ireland, Lithuania, the Netherlands, Romania, Spain, Belgium, the Czech Republic, Greece, Italy, Luxembourg, Poland, Slovakia, and Sweden.

Saturday, May 16th : National Asian Heritage Festival: Fiesta Asia Street Fair

The Asia Heritage Foundation will be hosting a variety of activities, live performances, Asian art display and food exhibit at Pennsylvania Ave NW between 3rd and 6thSt NW from 10:00 a.m. to 7:00 p.m. This is a free event.

Additional programs:

Dance of Light
May 8-24, From 9:00 am to 5:30 pm at the Korean Cultural Center, 2370 Massachusetts Avenue NW. This is a free event.

The Washington DC Dragon Boat Festival
May 16-17, From 8:30 am to 5:00 pm at Taipei Economic and Cultural Representative Office, 2900 Virginia Avenue NW. This is a free event.

Here are some recommendations to enjoy your “journey around the world”:

  1. Make sure to bring a photo ID. Embassies require photo ID for admission.
  2. Let your car take a rest that day. Street parking is very difficult at many embassy locations. You have to use public transportation and many embassies are within walking distance of each other. They are just located along Massachusetts Avenue.
  3. Purchase a Souvenir Passport to get stamped at each embassy you visit.
  4. Follow Culture Lens DC (@DCCulture) on Twitter to get updates and Press “Like it” on the Culture Lens in DC Facebook page. Use the hashtags #PassportDC and #CultureLensDC for updates about new experiences, exciting activities, and other cultural news.
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