Calendar of Events: December 2017
All programs are free and open to the public unless otherwise noted. Visitors should be prepared for a security check upon entrance to the museum. Program attendees should arrive 30 minutes in advance. For a complete schedule of activities check: https://americanhistory.si.edu.
Opening Displays and Exhibitions
Opens Nov. 20
First Floor, East
These two showcases display artifacts ranging from the early days of children’s television to more contemporary programming. Objects on view will include Mister Rogers’ sweater, a pair of Mickey Mouse Club ears, objects from “Bill Nye the Science Guy” and several of Muppets from Sesame Street. Note: this display is part of the museum’s Holiday Festival programming, see below for details.
City of Hope: Resurrection City and the 1968 Poor People's Campaign
Opens Dec. 15
NMAAHC Gallery at the National Museum of American History
Second Floor, East
In 2018, the National Museum of African American History and Culture will mark the 50th anniversary of the assassination of Martin Luther King Jr. with an exhibition devoted to the Poor People’s Campaign. The gallery will feature never-before-seen photographs, oral histories and artifacts from Resurrection City, the small community for the nation’s poor set up in Washington, D.C. This exhibition is hosted at the National Museum of American History.
Smithsonian Holiday Festival
Saturday, Dec. 2 and Sunday, Dec. 3; 10 a.m.-5:30 p.m.
The museum will explore the holiday spirit with musical performances, cooking demonstrations, holiday decorations and more. Holiday movies and TV shows will screen throughout the day in the Warner Bros. Theater. Among the events over the weekend are:
- U.S. Air Force Band Performances
Saturday, Dec. 2 and Sunday, Dec. 3; Noon, 1 p.m. and 2 p.m.
Flag Hall, Second Floor, Center
- Mars Heritage Chocolate “From Bean to Bar” Program
Saturday, Dec. 2; 10 a.m.-5 p.m.
Sunday, Dec. 3; 10 a.m.-3 p.m.
Third Floor, West
Audiences will be able to explore the history of chocolate through demonstrations and tastings of chocolate from American Heritage, a division of Mars Wrigley Confectionery. The featured chocolate is fashioned from recipes dating back to 1750 and uses a sprinkling of spices such as cinnamon, nutmeg, vanilla, orange and red pepper.
- “Cooking Up History: Holiday Traditions” with the Smithsonian Folklife Festival
Saturday, Dec. 2; 1 p.m.
Wallace H. Coulter Performance Plaza, Demonstration Kitchen
First Floor, West
Local Cantor and singer Arianne Brown of Adas Israel Congregation will perform traditional Hanukkah songs and share stories about the origins and traditions of the holiday. This concert is part of the “Sounds of Faith” music series, a component of the Museum’s Religion in America initiative.
- Book signing: “The Hamilton Cookbook: Cooking, Eating, and Entertaining in Hamilton's World” by Laura Kumin
Saturday, Dec. 2; 12-2 p.m.
Meet the author of the book that takes you into The Hamiltons’ home and table, with historical information, recipes and tips on how you can prepare and serve the food that the founding families enjoyed in their day.
- Merry Cranberry Celebration
Saturday, Dec. 2 and Sunday, Dec. 3
Stars and Stripes Cafe, Lower Level; 11 a.m.-3 p.m.
Jazz Cafe, First Floor; 10 a.m.-5 p.m.
The Stars and Stripes Cafe and the Jazz Cafe will feature the season’s brightest fruit in a variety of desserts, drinks and a burger, plus brownies made with Mars Heritage Chocolate and a surprise specialty based on a recipe from the new “The Hamilton Cookbook.”
- Holiday television and film screenings
T is for Television
Saturday, Dec. 2 and Sunday, Dec. 3; 10:30 a.m.-12:30 p.m.
Warner Bros. Theater, First Floor
Free, no tickets required
Watch episodes from “Mr. Rogers' Neighborhood,” “Sesame Street” and more.
“The Polar Express”
Saturday, Dec. 2 and Sunday, Dec. 3; 1:30 p.m. in 2D and 3:30 p.m. in 3D
Warner Bros. Theater, First Floor
Ticket purchase required: http://purchase.tickets.com/
A young boy embarks on a magical adventure to the North Pole on the Polar Express. During his adventure he learns about friendship, bravery, and the spirit of Christmas. Starring Tom Hanks.
- Complimentary gift-wrapping of holiday merchandise will be available at the Main Store.
Smithsonian Jazz Masterworks Orchestra
Duke Ellington: Second Sacred Concert
Friday, Dec. 1; 7:30 p.m.
Ticket purchase required: https://americanhistory.si.edu/smithsonian-jazz/concerts
Wallace H. Coulter Performance Plaza, Stage
First Floor, West
The Smithsonian Jazz Masterworks Orchestra will recreate Duke Ellington’s second sacred concert to commemorate its 50-year anniversary. This program is part of the Sounds of Faith music series, a component of the museum’s Religion in America initiative.
Smithsonian Chamber Music Society
The Smithsonian Chamber Players
Sunday, Dec. 10; 7:30 p.m.
Pre-concert lecture at 6:30 p.m.
Ticket purchase required: http://smithsonianassociates.org
Hall of Music, Third Floor, West
The Smithsonian Chamber Players—Mark Fewer (violin), Myrin Lutzke (violoncello) and Kenneth Slowik (fortepiano)—present Beethoven: Trio in D Major, Op. 70, No. 1 “Ghost” (1808) and Schubert: Trio in B-flat Major, D. 898 (1827).
# # #