After the Turkey, it's the Afterparty
If you're not leaving town for Thanksgiving, you're going to want to grab a drink with friends who find themselves in a similar situation. And if your family lives in the area, you're probably going to want to get out Thursday night anyway, whether it's to catch up with old friends who are back in town or because a day with the family has left you needing a drink.
The big question, however, is where to go. The usual Thursday night options aren't in play. Lucky Bar? Closed. Front Page? Opening at noon for a Thanksgiving buffet, then closing at 7 without offering happy hour. McFadden's? Nope, the college students will have to go somewhere else.
Eighteenth Street Lounge? Clarendon Ballroom? Cafe Saint-Ex? Buffalo Billiards? Asylum? Nope. Looks like we're batting .000. What's a Thanksgiving Day barfly to do?
"The smaller neighborhood places that have regulars, like Atomic [Billiards], we stay open for them," says Curt Large, the chief operating officer of Bedrock Management, which owns a number of area nightspots, including Buffalo Billiards and Mackey's Irish Pub. Those two will be closed, while others, including Nanny O'Brien's, will open as usual. Large says it's mainly a business decision: "Last year we stayed open at Rocket Bar, and it just wasn't worth it. They made half of what Atomic did."
In other words, count on your local dive being open, while many downtown lounges and music venues will be locked up tight. Also, don't forget hotel lounges, like Urbana, Helix or the Tabard Inn, which have a captive audience.
We could spend pages typing up all the places that will be closed on Thursday -- Bourbon, Busboys and Poets, Clarendon Grill, Rock Bottom breweries, the Rock and Roll Hotel, etc. -- but instead, we'll just list a bunch of places that we know will be open for post-turkey drinking and dancing.
Open at 5, keeping regular hours.
Open at 6.
Open at 6.
Open at 8.
Open at 4 p.m.
The Red Room opens at 9 p.m. No live music or DJs.
Doors open at 8.
61st birthday celebration with live music from Wicked Jezebel, turkey dinners served until 1 a.m.
Lotus Lounge and Tattoo Bar
The two bars, located across K Street from each other, are opening at 9:30 for a mini-block party. Move back and forth between them to check out the DJs -- house music at Lotus, rock and mashups at Tattoo -- for free if you arrive before midnight. Beginning at 12:01, men pay a $20 cover.
Open at 9:30.
Open at 5.
Open at 4 p.m. DJ Jealousy of WPGC spins.
Palace of Wonders
Opens at 8 for a "Grindhouse" double feature. Pumpkin pie and popcorn served all night. No cover.
The Park at 14th
Wear "your finest black attire" to this week's Pandora party. Make sure you get in by sending an RSVP with your name and e-mail address to firstname.lastname@example.org by 4 p.m. Thursday.
Opening at 9 p.m. with $2 Wild Turkey shots, hot apple cider cocktails and other specials in honor of the holiday.
Open at 6.
Tonic at Quigley's Pharmacy
The only bar on George Washington University's campus is serving up family-style meals with turkey and sides from noon to 8 ($23 a place) but the bar will be open and showing football for those who just want a drink.
Open regular hours, since nothing says Thanksgiving like a greasy burger and pint of Busch on draft.
The Nouveau Riche DJs take over the F Street nightclub for an 18-and-over night of electro, hip-hop and dance music. Hit ultrabardc.com for free admission passes.
Whitlows on Wilson
Doors at 8. No live music.
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