Events July 25-29: Harry Potter, Portraits Alive, Owney, the Negro Leagues and Apollo 15

Murray Hall at the ballot box
Murray Hall at the ballot box Feedloader (Clickability)

Make this Monday magical by coming to the Air and Space Museum Udvar-Hazy Center‘s Airbus IMAX Theater for a trip into the wizarding world. Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows: Part II has come to the Airbus Theater, presenting the Chosen One in all his wonder on a sky-high IMAX screen with six-channel digital surround sound. Join other Muggles as you watch Part 2 of the epic battle between the good and evil forces in the wizarding world. Will Harry defeat Lord Voldemort? Will the wizarding world be safe again? The stakes have never been higher as the Harry Potter saga comes to its close. This film plays daily at 4:30, 7:15 and 10. Tickets can be purchased at the box office prior to the show or online.

Tuesday July 26 Portraits Alive!

Try something new this Tuesday at National Portrait Gallery, head out for Portraits Alive. Meet in the F Street lobby at 2:15 to begin this new twist on portrait viewing. Watch as local teenagers lead a theatrical tour that brings the Portrait Gallery’s collections to life through an original, student-written play. Made possible by DC’s 2011 Summer Youth Employment Program, the teen guides take visitors on a memorable journey incorporating a variety of portraits throughout the gallery and perform biographical portrayals of the subjects represented in the photographs, paintings, drawings, sculptures and prints of the museum. This event is free and fun for the whole family so don’t miss this opportunity to learn about the subjects in the Portrait Gallery.

Wednesday July 27 Celebrate Owney the Postal Dog

At the Postal Museum this Wednesday, there is cause for celebration. Beginning at 11, check out the First Day of Issue Ceremony for Owney the Postal Dog. Owney became the unofficial mascot of the Railway Mail Service in the 19th-century when the scruffy pooch climbed aboard a rail train and traveled the nation for nine years, garnering fame and glory. Now the U.S. Postal Service and Postal Museum are celebrating the issuance of a Forever Stamp in honor of Owney. Join museum staff and supporters at 11 for the First Day Issue Ceremony and remarks. Then at noon have some fun with the Owney Festival. Enjoy hands-on activities including making an Owney tag, sorting mail in the Rail Way Post Office, creating a stamp collection and more. At 2 join Dirk Wales, author of A Lucky Dog: Owney, U.S. Rail Mail Mascot, for a book talk. Afterwards be one of the first museum visitors to see Art of the Stamp: Owney the Postal Dog, featuring the original stamp art and Owney himself, newly conserved and ready for the spotlight. This is a free event that the whole family can enjoy.

Thursday July 28 Take Me Out to the Ball Game

Get out of the heat this Thursday and come to the Anacostia Community Museum for Part 1 of “Stories from the Negro Leagues.” Come to the museum’s Program Room at 10:30 for a presentation by David Haberstich, curator of photography in the American History Museum’s Archives Center, and Dwayne Sims the founder and CEO of the Negro Leagues Hall of Fame. The first Negro League was formed in February of 1920 in Kansas City, Missouri. The appeal of the Negro League soon spread throughout the country as leagues were created in the Midwest and the South. Listen as Haberstich and Sims lead a discussion about Addison Scurlock‘s images of Negro Leagues figures and Howard University sports. After, explore the related exhibit Separate and Unequaled: Black Baseball in the District of Columbia. This event is free and family-friendly.

Friday July 29 Meet an Astronaut

Come out to the Air and Space Museum this Friday for a chance to meet Al Worden, one of the astronauts of Apollo 15. Visit the Moving Beyond the Earth Gallery, gallery 113 on the first floor of the east wing, at 11. Listen as Worden discusses and signs copies of his book Falling to Earth: An Apollo 15 Astronaut’s Journey to the Moon to celebrate the 40th anniversary of the Apollo 15 space flight. Apollo 15 was the ninth manned mission in the American Apollo space program and the fourth mission to land successfully on the moon. It is considered by NASA as the most successful manned flight ever achieved. Join Worden at 11 for a book talk moderated by space history curator Allan Needell. A question-and-answer session will take place following the discussion as well as a live webcast. Beginning at 12:30 Worden will host a three hour book signing and festivities will end at 5. This is a free event and copies of Worden’s book are available for purchase in the museum store.

For a complete listing of Smithsonian Institution events and exhibitions visit the goSmithsonian Visitors Guide.

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