Events June 26-28: Duke Kahanamoku, Bring Back the Funk, and the Folklife Festival

This week, learn about past Olympians, get funky with George Clinton and other music legends, and kick off this summer’s Folklife Festival

AIDS Memorial Quilt
This year marks the 25th anniversary of the AIDS Memorial Quilt, which will be unfolded at the Smithsonian Folklife Festival. Image courtesy of the Folklife Festival

Tuesday, June 26 This Is Your Life: Duke Kahanamoku

Gear up for the Olympics with the American Indian Museum’s June Daily Films, which wrap up this week. In 1957, the TV show This Is Your Life hosted native Hawaiian swimmer and surfer Duke Kahanamoku, who won the 100 meter race in the 1912 Stockholm Olympics and later became a world famous surfer, to discuss his incredible journey to the Olympics and his legacy. Don’t forget to visit the related exhibition, “Best in the World: Native Athletes in the Olympics.Free. 12:30 p.m. to 1:00 p.m. American Indian Museum.

Wednesday, June 27 Bring Back the Funk

Get funkadelic with George Clinton, Meshell Ndegeocello, and Ivan Neville and Dumpstaphunk at the opening concert of the Smithsonian Folklife Festival. These music legends are taking over the Mall to celebrate the 2012 groundbreaking of the National Museum of African American History and Culture (which will house Clinton’s iconic Mothership in its “Musical Crossroads” exhibition). Discover how funk has influenced hip hop, soul and rock—and get up and dance! Free. 6:00 p.m. to 9:00 p.m. National Mall.

Thursday, June 28 Smithsonian Folklife Festival

Since 1967, the Folklife Festival has drawn more than one million people each year to celebrate community arts and culture. Meet musicians, artists, performers, craftspeople, workers, cooks and storytellers who come to the Mall from all over the world. This year’s festival explores three themes: Campus and Community: 150 years of land-grant universities and the USDA; Citified: Arts and Creativity East of the Anacostia River and Creativity and Crisis: Unfolding the AIDS Memorial Quilt. Check the Folklife Festival website for a full schedule of events. Free. Events run today through July 1 and again July 4 through 8. National Mall.

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