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As Partial Federal Government Shutdown Continues, Mayor Bowser Declares DC Remains Open for Business

Monday, December 31, 2018

(Washington, DC) As the partial federal government shutdown continues, Mayor Muriel Bowser and Destination DC, the official tourism organization for Washington, DC, are reminding residents and visitors that “DC is Open” and encouraging those in the area to continue enjoying local events and attractions.

“We know that federal government shutdowns cause many disruptions for both residents and visitors, but we want to remind everyone that while the federal government might be closed, DC is open for business,” said Mayor Bowser. “I am proud that through these challenging times, local businesses, event organizers, and others are stepping up and providing our residents and visitors continued access to resources, attractions, and activities that make DC the greatest city to live in and visit.”

Despite the expected, upcoming closures of the Smithsonian museums, research centers, and the National Zoo, if the shutdown persists beyond January 1, 2019, there are plenty of events and attractions around the District that will not be impacted, including but not limited to:

  • Rodarte at the National Museum of Women in the Arts
  • “Pictures of the Year: 75 Years of the World’s Best Photography” at the Newseum (through Jan. 20, 2019)
  • Miss Saigon at the Kennedy Center (through Jan. 13); as well as daily free performances on Millennium Stage at 6pm
  • New Nature by Marpi at Artechouse (through Jan. 13, 2019)
  • Nordic Impressions at Phillips Collection (through Jan. 13, 2019)
  • Ice skating at rinks including Canal Park in Capitol Riverfront, Washington Harbour Ice Rink in Georgetown, Wharf Ice Rink
  • Georgetown GLOW public light installations (through Jan. 6, 2019)
  • “Dream Closet” installation of modern holiday ornaments above CityCenterDC’s Palmer Alley.

In addition to these attractions, private institutions not affected by the shutdown include, but are not limited to:

  • Anderson House - The American Revolution Institute of the Society of the Cincinnati
  • Arena Stage
  • Arlington National Cemetery
  • Artechouse
  • Big Bus Tours
  • Bike and Roll   
  • Bureau of Engraving and Printing
  • Capital One Arena
  • City Segway Tours of Washington, DC
  • DAR Constitution Hall
  • Entertainment Cruises
  • Entertainment and Sports Arena (see DC’s NBA G-league team Capital City Go-Go)
  • Ford’s Theatre (Aftermath Exhibits remain open to daytime visitors from 9:30 am to 5 pm; the historic site (theatre, museum, Petersen House) will be closed for daytime visitation.)
  • Hillwood Estate, Museum & Gardens
  • The Kennedy Center for the Performing Arts
  • Madame Tussauds Washington, D.C.
  • Museum of the Bible
  • National Building Museum
  • National Cathedral
  • National Law Enforcement Museum
  • National Geographic Museum
  • National Museum of Women and the Arts
  • National Theatre
  • Nationals Park
  • Newseum
  • Old Town Trolley Tours
  • Open Top Sightseeing (certain loops)
  • Phillips Collection (permanent collection is free on weekdays)
  • Tudor Place
  • Union Station
  • US Capitol Visitor Center
  • Washington Walks
  • Woolly Mammoth Theatre Company
  • The Wharf

“While we’re disappointed the Smithsonian museums will close on January 2, the vast majority of things for visitors to see and do throughout Washington, DC’s neighborhoods remain open,” said Elliott L. Ferguson, II, President and CEO of Destination DC. “It’s a great time to find a deal in the city and explore The Wharf, our Michelin-rated dining scene, watch a hockey or basketball game or see a show.”