Where to Watch Outdoor Movies in DC, Maryland and Virginia All Summer Long
Grab some popcorn for outdoor movie screenings almost every day of the week
Watching a movie under the stars is a D.C.-area summer tradition.
Tim Burton movies in a cemetery, a foray into French dance and plenty of opportunities to watch “Top Gun: Maverick” and “Minions: The Rise of Gru” are on tap this summer.
Pack your popcorn and check out the movies below — the list is organized by the day of the week, starting with Monday. We’re expecting more movie announcements to bubble up soon, including from the Golden Triangle and Bethesda, so check back for more.
Outdoor Summer Movies in Washington, D.C.
Adams Morgan Movie Nights
📅 Tuesdays, May 23 to June 27
📍 Soccer field at Marie Reed Elementary (Northwest D.C.)
In need of a good laugh? This year’s Adams Morgan Movie Night’s movie lineup is comedy focused and sure to put a smile on your face. The movie nights will kick off on Tuesday, May 23 with “This Is Spinal Tap” and continue with weekly screenings on Tuesday nights through June 27, capping with the all-star flick “Shrek.”
Go early to hear stand-up comedians perform before each screening.
Movies are free and shown on the soccer field at Marie Reed School. Check out the Brown Bag Movie Meals for dinner from The Diner, Elfegne Ethiopian, Shibuya Eatery and more.
📅 Wednesdays through June 7
📍 Alethia Tanner Park (Northeast D.C.)
We can all get behind this year’s theme, “Villains We Love” and its films including “Cruella” (May 31) and “The Devil Wears Prada” (June 7). Movies begin at sunset; registration is recommended, the NoMA BID says.
Van Ness Main Street Movie Night in the Park
📅 Wednesdays in June
📍 UDC Ampitheater (Northwest D.C.)
Watch “Back to the Future” (June 21), “Sister Act” (June 28), “101 Dalmations” (1996) (July 19) and “Minions: The Rise of Gru” (July 26) at the University of the District of Columbia’s outdoor amphitheater. There are wooden seats, but you can bring a cushion or blanket to up the “cozy” factor.
You’re allowed to bring food and drinks, including alcohol, organizers say.
Movies on the Pitch
📅 Thursdays, June 22, July 6, Aug. 24 and Sept. 7
📍 Audi Field (Southwest D.C.)
💲 Free, but tickets are required
Sit on the green at Audi Field to see “Black Panther: Wakanda Forever” (June 22), “Jurassic World Dominion” (Sept. 7) and more family-friendly films. Gates will open at 6:30 p.m. ahead of the movie at 7:30 p.m. Concessions will be available for purchase from Audi Field. No chairs or outside food or alcohol are permitted.
Seating on the field is first come, first served, but more seating will be available in the stands.
CAN I KICK IT? Downtown DC Summer Flicks
📅 Thursdays, June 1 through July 13
📍 Franklin Park (Northwest D.C.)
DowntownDC’s CAN I KICK IT? movie series is back for its sixth season at Franklin Park — and a DJ will be providing a live soundtrack.
The free event series begins with “Black Panther: Wakanda Forever” (June 1) and continues with titles including “Mission Impossible” (June 8) and “Everything Everywhere All At Once” (June 29). Join the crowd for action-packed films, music, nearby food specials and more.
Seating starts at 7:30 p.m. for pre-movie tunes.
Films on the Green
📅 Thursdays, May 25, June 1, June 8 and June 22
📍 Various locations
Celebrating French dance and cinema, Villa Albertine’s series will show “Sur le Rythme” at the National Sylvan Theatre (June 1), “Trois Nuits Par Semaine” at the Washington Monument (June 8) and “Twist à Bamako” at Anacostia Park (June 22). Films will be shown in French with English subtitles.
Cinematery: Tim Burton’s Summer of Surreal
📅 First Fridays
📍 Congressional Cemetery (Southeast D.C.)
💲 $10 adult/$5 child recommended donation
Congressional Cemetery is leaning into its spooky surroundings by showing Tim Burton films: “Alice in Wonderland” (June 2), “The Nightmare Before Christmas” (July 7), “Batman” (Aug. 4) and “Dark Shadows” (Sept. 1).
The Drive-In at Union Market
📅 First and third Fridays through July 21
📍 Union Market (Northeast D.C.)
💲 Free walk-ins, or $20 per car
Films including “King Richard” (June 2) and “Hairspray” (July 21) pair nicely with elevated concessions at Union Market (you can order food online here).
Showings cost $20 per car. Audio is played over the FM radio.
This drive-in is open to those without a car: You can watch on Neal Place for free, and audio will be played over speakers. Alcoholic drinks are only permitted at Neal Place, not in the parking lot.
Extraordinary Cinema at The REACH
📅 Fridays, May 26 to Sept. 1
📍 The REACH at the Kennedy Center
The Kennedy Center will present outdoor films all summer long in its Extraordinary Cinema series. The REACH Video Wall will show classic and modern feature films including “The Iron Giant” (June 30), “Jaws” (July 7), “The Princess Bride” (July 28) and “O Brother, Where Art Thou?” (Aug. 25).
Screenings will begin about sundown or 8 p.m., the Kennedy Center says.
Films at the Stone
📅 One Friday per month (June 16, July 21 and Aug. 25)
📍 Martin Luther King, Jr. Memorial (Southwest D.C.)
Catch a film at the Martin Luther King, Jr. Memorial to watch stories of individuals who, against all odds, fought for what was right. The films are “Minions: The Rise of Gru (June 16), “Avatar: The Way of the Water” (July 21) and “The Woman King” (Aug. 25)
The films start at 8 pm. Organizers suggest coming early with blankets or low-profile lawn chairs.
Outdoor Summer Movies in Maryland
Movies in the Parks (Rockville)
📅 Wednesdays, Aug. 2-23
📍 Various locations
Explore Rockville’s parks to see “The Boss Baby” (Aug. 2, Potomac Woods Park), “The Secret Life of Pets” (Aug. 9, Woodley Gardens Park), “Cool Runnings” (Aug. 16, Montrose Park) and “Raya and the Last Dragon” (Aug. 23, Maryvale Park).
Movies on the Potomac (National Harbor)
📅 Thursday date night movies and Sunday family night movies through September
📍 National Harbor
Movies on the Potomac are back! Pack your chairs, grab food to go and meet at the plaza’s big screen for free fun with Thursday date night movies beginning at 7 p.m. and Sunday family night movies beginning at 6 p.m.
All you need to bring is a chair or a blanket to enjoy these free screenings. Food is available to purchase at nearby establishments.
Movies Under the Stars (Potomac)
📅 First Fridays, June to October
📍 Cabin John Village
Flicks on this summer’s family-friendly lineup are “Moana” (June 2), “Top Gun: Maverick” (July 7), “Toy Story” (Aug. 4) and “Encanto” (Oct. 6).
Summer Movie Nights at the Wine Bin (Ellicott City)
📅 Saturdays through Oct. 28
📍 Ellicott City
The Wine Bin in Ellicott City, Maryland is hosting free movie nights now through Oct. 29. Viewers can buy wine and snacks including chocolate, cheeses and charcuterie to enjoy while watching a variety of films from classics like “Sleepless in Seattle” (June 24) to new films like “Elvis” (Sept. 2).
Each evening begins with live music. The parking lot closes 90 minutes before showtime.
Movies on the Beach (North Beach)
📅 Third Saturday of June, July, August and September
📍 North Beach (Calvert County)
Bring a beach chair for family-friendly films including “Sing 2” (July 15), “Turning Red” (Aug. 19) and “Thor: Love and Thunder” (Sept. 16).
FYI: There’s also a Movies on the Beach series in Ocean City, Maryland, if you’re heading to the shore.
Lakefront Live (Columbia)
📅 Various dates through Sept. 22
📍 Downtown Columbia Lakefront
From the event’s premiere with “Guardians of the Galaxy 2” (May 27) to “Indiana Jones & The Last Crusade” (June 23) to the original “Top Gun” (July 7), Columbia’s series has something for everyone. Movies begin at dusk (8-8:30 p.m.).
Outdoor Movies in Virginia
South Riding Movie Night
📅 Alternating Tuesdays, June 13 to Aug. 8
📍 Town Green or SRC Stage
Bring a blanket or chairs to watch “Puss in Boots: The Last Wish” (June 13), “Minions: The Rise of Gru” (June 27), “The Bad Guys” (July 25) and more family classics. The movies start at sunset. Check the schedule for the location of each screening.
Mosaic Films in the Park (Fairfax)
📅 Wednesdays, June 22 through Aug. 17
📍 Strawberry Park in Fairfax, Virginia
The large outdoor screen will show a mix of PG and PG-13 films including “Family Camp” (June 22), “Top Gun: Maverick” (July 6), “Ticket to Paradise” (July 27) and “The Super Mario Bros. Movie” (Aug. 3). Movies are set to begin at 7 p.m.
📅 Fridays in June
📍 Gateway Park
Virginians voted to watch “Encanto” (June 3), “Mamma Mia” (June 10), “Space Jam” (June 17) and “National Treasure” (June 24) at this free series. Each night is set to include extra kid-friendly programming.
Beer and wine sales are set to begin at 6 p.m., and a rotating lineup of food trucks will serve snacks. Movies will begin about sundown.
Family Movie Nights (Tysons Corner Center)
📅 Fridays, May 26, June 30, July 28 and Aug. 18
📍 Tysons Corner Center The Plaza
Snack on complimentary popcorn and soft drinks while watching “Moana,” “E.T. the Extra-Terrestrial,” “The Boss Baby: Family Business” and “Matilda.” Screenings are set to begin at 7 p.m.
Lovettsville’s Summer on the Green
📅 Begins Saturday, May 27
📍 Lovettsville Town Green
“The Sandlot” is always a good choice to kick off a summer movie series — it’s set to air at 8 p.m. the Saturday of Memorial Day weekend. We expect more screenings to be announced on their Facebook page throughout the summer.
Starlight Cinema (Centreville)
📅 Saturdays, Aug. 5-26
📍 Trinity Centre
Starting with “Minions: Rise of Gru” (Aug. 5) and sending off summer with “DC League of Super Pets” (Aug. 26), Fairfax County’s outdoor movie series offers a pre-film children’s show at 7 p.m. before the silver screen lights up at dark.
📅 Saturdays, May 27 to Sept. 2
📍 Reston Station Metro Plaza
Get a little wild with animal and adventure family flicks including “Secret Life of Pets” (May 27), “Zootopia” (June 10) and “The Jungle Book” (Aug. 12).
Special Movie + Event nights will feature more fun for the whole family: A service dog training demonstration on June 17, a pet adoption event on Aug. 5, hands-on animal fun on Aug. 19 and an appearance by Princess Moana on Aug. 26.
It’s part of Reston Summerbration which also includes free yoga on Mondays and Wednesdays, trampoline fitness on Tuesdays and live music on Thursdays and Fridays.
D.C.-Area Rooftop Bars And Restaurants To Elevate Your Summer
What better way to relish languid, D.C. summer days than from above, with an Aperol spritz in one hand and ice water in the other? Because if you are going to be outdoors, the best way to cut the heat is with a rooftop breeze and a refreshing beverage.
The area has plenty of bars and restaurants with excellent views, from the Washington Channel to the Washington Monument, where you can grab a tasty snack or a full meal, while passing the time listening to local DJs or even playing mini golf. Without further ado, here’s your guide to the top…
New spots to add to your rotation
2436 18th St NW
Adams Morgan just got another rooftop restaurant. This one offers great deals on California-style Mexican food during happy hour (4 p.m. to 7 p.m., Mondays through Fridays), including $6 margaritas and $4 tacos. I spent $16.90 for a pear sangria and queso fundido (melted cheese with chips), plus tax and tips, during a recent visit. Baja Tap’s chef, Greg Lloyd, worked at Le Diplomate for nearly seven years. A notable menu item: Taki pies (think Frito pie, the Tex-Mex casserole, but with Takis tortilla chips).
Upstairs at the Morrow
1208 3rd St NE
This is one of D.C.’s newest hotel rooftop bars. Not only do you get a solid view of the Capitol and Washington Monument but food prepared by Michelin-starred chef Nicholas Stefanelli. The rooftop is billed as having a more casual vibe than Stefanelli’s downstairs French restaurant, Le Clou but still, it’s lavish. You can order Champagne and elevated shots, including a cucumber and mint pickleback, while taking in panoramic views of the city from the NoMa neighborhood.
2915 Wilson Boulevard
The three-story Arlington restaurant has been around since 2017. However, the ten-thousand-square-foot space just underwent a million dollar renovation, doubling the size of the rooftop. It now has a retractable roof, so it can stay open rain or shine. It’s massive, seating a total of 500 people, including 150 outside. Big fan of brunch? On Sundays, it goes until 6 p.m., so order $18 chicken and waffles and $9 Bloody Marys until late in the day.
Somewhere to take in the view
960 Wharf St SW
This is a bar right at the dock of the Southwest waterfront. You’ll find a great view of the Washington Channel. You won’t find a full meal, only snacks like spiced pork skins and pimento cheese. The dock bar offers classic cocktails, like a Dark and Stormy, and original creations like Dockside Donkey (a twist on the Moscow Mule). This is a good place to start if you plan on having a day or night at the Wharf.
Top of the Gate
2650 Virginia Ave NW
The bar is atop the Watergate Hotel, hence the name. You get a 360 view of the Kennedy Center, the Potomac River, Washington Monument, and the rest of the D.C. skyline. It’s one of the more iconic hotel views the city has the offer. For that reason, the hotel highly encourages people to make a reservation. Expect cocktails, wine, and small bites like a charcuterie board and chicken wings.
515 15th St NW
Another hotel bar, except this one is just across the street from the White House. Treat yourself to a fancy occasion here, enjoying iconic, historic views alongside a full meal — from a whole roasted bronzino with broccolini to a lamb rack with oyster mushrooms.
If you’re in it for the food
920 Blagden Alley NW
Amazonia/Causa is the most talked about new restaurant in D.C. right now. Causa has a tasting menu downstairs and is nominated for a Michelin star. Amazonia is a la carte. The pair share the same roof and chef, Carlos Delgado, who serves up delightful Peruvian food. Not only does the rooftop restaurant offer a colorful, jungle-themed ambiance but the best selection of Pisco cocktails to pair with a delicious meal.
1401 Okie St NE
This is the rooftop bar and lounge to the Michelin-star restaurant Gravitas. Meaning, celebrated chef Matt Baker is behind your meals. While the menu is not fixed like downstairs, you can still expect a decadent meal. (There’s caviar.) You can also enjoy local, seasonal offerings like Maryland crab cakes.
1811 Columbia Rd NW
This is a decades-old institution. At the helm now is Masako Morishita, a Japanese native. She’s cooking up classic sushi options, plus “one of the best salads in recent memory,” according to Washington Post critic Tom Sietsema: crisp Japanese apples dressed with gochujang.
Dancing, music, and drag brunches
1940 9th St NW
Want a spot where you can start and end your night? This is a place to consider. The venue offers live performances, from local bands to DJs on the second floor. On the third floor, find the roof deck. It’s mostly covered, but there are parts where it isn’t (and where you’ll find the smokers section). The deck also occasionally hosts events like Dyke Night Tea Party.
1201 K St NW
Condé Nast says this hotel rooftop bar in downtown makes you feel like you’re in Miami, and it’s true. It’s very sleek, outfitted with potted plants and classy furniture. People are dressed to the nines. There is always something happening on the rooftop, which is indoors and outdoors, especially DJ sets. Local, Black-run events are frequently hosted here.
H St Country Club
1335 H St NE
If dancing isn’t your groove but you want to move, this bar is for you. Play all your favorite arcade games, from mini golf to skeeball, before heading upstairs to the roof. That’s not all — there’s also drag brunch on Sundays.
Chance of a summer storm? We’ve got you covered.
3718 14th St NW
If there’s a dive bar on this list, it’s this one. It’s a very casual vibe, where you can play board games (although pieces might be missing) and enjoy great deals (the shot and beer combos are solid). It’s where you want to be for a summer thunderstorm, with a solid covering. People do smoke on the deck, hence the ashtrays on tables.
Ivy and Coney
1537 7th St NW
Enjoy one of the best hot dogs D.C. has to offer at this rooftop deck. TVs are scattered throughout the bar, which dishes Midwestern-style hotdogs and pizza. So if there’s a high-stakes game on, the bar is probably showing it, especially if it’s the Chicago Cubs or the Detroit Tigers. The bar also knows how to celebrate Hanukkah, so if you want to celebrate partially outside, this is the place.
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