The Best Memorial Day Weekend Events Around The US

Memorial Day Weekend marks the unofficial start of the summer season (we’ve been drinking shirtless since March though), and the first major warm weather holiday weekend – which means that everyone and their mom will be headed to the beach. You don’t have go, though. There are plenty of cool, fun things to do in some of our favorite cities that don’t involve sand at all.

Washington D.C.
The Nationals play the Cardinals and Phillies Memorial Day Weekend in the nation’s capital and we can’t imagine a better way to spend some time than at the park with a cold beer and a big-ass hotdog in hand. There are games on Friday, Saturday, and Sunday as well as special events like Saturday’s Taste of the World food festival celebrating D.C.’s diverse food culture. Tckets to that event include the cost of the game. Individual game tickets start at a very budget-friendly $25.

New York City
Lots of cities have great rooftop social scenes, but none of them are quite like New York’s. Many bars with patios will be opening them for the warm months starting on Memorial Day Weekend, if they haven’t already. Stop by Night of Joy in Williamsburg for $6 frozen margs and $4 beers during their everyday happy hour from 5-8 pm in a really chill setting. In the city, the rooftop bar at Pod 39 Hotel in Murray Hill has killer views of the Empire State Building (and probably some other killer views as well). A few hotels with rooftop pools have also started opening them up to the public, like The James New York in Soho, which usually has a “no cover” weekend pool party. The Beach at Dream Downtown also offers day passes for a fee. Back in Brooklyn, The McCarren Hotel and Pool will be offering mellow vibes and great drinks on their rooftop deck and pool.

Atlanta
On Saturday, May 28th, the Atlanta Zoo is hosting what has become a cool Memorial Weekend tradition in the city: Brew at the Zoo, a beer and wine tasting on the wild side. There will be more than 70+ brews to try, including those from local breweries like SweetWater, Terrapin and Monday Night. Several local artists are set to perform, and underground music and hip-hop mixmaster DJ Deliver will handle the main set. Tickets for non-zoo members are only $43, and $38 for members. VIP tickets, which include a pre-party, are $85. If you’re in the mood for baseball, the Braves are playing the Marlins, May 27th through May 29th, before playing the Giants on Memorial Day. The game will feature a special presentation in honor of the holiday. Tickets start at around $20 for the games. See above for our feelings on how cold beers, encased meats, and Memorial Day go together.

Los Angeles
The 2016 Los Angeles Independent Filmmakers Showcase Film Fest is bringing more than 100 indies to L.A. May 25th through June 4th, and you can check out a lot of them over the holiday weekend. Good bets are: Shock, an American horror film about a cop hunting a killer in a psychiatric facility, Minami, about a Japanese drug dealer on the run from the cops, Committed, a comedy about comic book villains Joker and Harley Quinn, and Love Lessons, a horror film the late Wes Craven – the king of horror himself – screened at his own festival last year. Admission is only $14 per screening and some of them are short films, so you can check out three for that price.

San Francisco
San Francisco’s annual Carnaval, a street festival celebrating Latin American and Caribbean cultures, is happening on May 28th and 29th in the Mission District. Local bilingual hip-hop duo Los Rakas, who have performed at both Coachella and SXSW, will be performing at the 20th Street Stage. Carnaval is free to attend and so is the concert. The EDM festival Audio on the Bay is also back for a third year on May 28th and 29th at the Craneway Pavilion in nearby Richmond. This year’s performers include Chris Lake, Dr. Fresch, Bleep Bloop, Ephwurd, GTA, No Mana and more. General admission tickets are $65.00 for either day and $130 for both days.

Chicago
Chicago’s Craft Beer Week coincides with Memorial Weekend (as it should, obviously), running from May 19th to May 29th, so there’s a lot to do if you’re around. Friday May 27th, Rev Brew, Illinois’ largest craft brewery, is setting sail for a 90-minute beer cruise featuring a DJ. Tickets are $49. The NW Side Craft Beer Ride is also that day, and $20 will get you unlimited rides on buses to check out various breweries along the route. The Welles Park Craft Beer Fest is on Saturday May 28th with $60 for general admission, and citywide there’ll be many low-cost beer brunch options on Sunday, May 29th so you can wash away the pain from the day before. For a last hurrah (sorry liver), close it all out on Memorial Day with $3 beers at Mojo Bar & Grill.

Dallas
Get beach vibes (minus the sand) at Corona’s Electric Beach. This traveling day party series with an ever-changing lineup will be in Dallas on Saturday, May 28th at Sisu Uptown. Trap music artist Party Favor and dancehall/dance musician Ape Drums are performing. Best of all, it’s completely free. The Deep Ellum Brewing Company is throwing its sixth annual Brew-BQ extravaganza on Sunday, May 29th. The event features live music from local musicians The O’s, Rise and Shine, Natural Anthem and more. You can test your hand-eye coordination (and sobriety) with games like giant beer pong and beer tetherball. You can also Dunk a Brewer for charity, too. The tickets are only $30, if purchased online in advance (and $35 at the door), and each includes two free beers and a plate of BBQ. Beers are only $4 after that. Texas (and beer) forever.