May marks Asian American and Pacific Islander (AAPI) Heritage Month in the United States. Every May since 1990, we honor and celebrate the culture, achievements, and contributions of Asian Americans and Pacific Islander Americans.
Washington, D.C. has a wonderful and diverse AAPI community, as well as a number of events and ways to commemorate AAPI Heritage Month locally:
1. Indulge on a variety of cuisines at Everything, Everyone, All the Food at Once Fest
Spearheaded by Kevin Tien—chef of D.C.’s modern Vietnamese restaurant Moon Rabbit/co-founder of Chefs Stopping AAPI Hate—this food festival on Saturday, May 20 will feature foods prepared by more than 18 regional AAPI chefs. Attendees who gather at The Wharf for the market will enjoy live music, delicious cuisines, and (for those 21 and older!) some alcoholic beverages. Learn more here.
2. Check out the Fiesta Asia Street Fair
Celebrating Asian Heritage Month, Fiesta Asia is being hosted by the Asia Heritage Foundation on May 20, featuring an array of fun and educational cultural experiences, including a street fair, movie showings, fashion exhibits, tastings, and more! Learn more here.
3. Experience the D.C. Dragon Boat Festival
D.C.’s Dragon Boat Festival is celebrating its 20th year on Saturday, May 20. Attendees can witness these magnificent boats race along the water, spawned from the legend of Qu Yuan and meant to keep bad spirits away. The races are followed by a number of cultural activities, like the Lion Dance. Learn more here.
4. Visit the National Museum of Asian Art
The National Museum of Asian Art is celebrating its 100th year with a number of high profile exhibits, including Ay-Ō’s Happy Rainbow Hell, Unstill Waters: Contemporary Photography from India, and more! Learn more here.
5. Attend a special event at your local public library
All month, public libraries across the DMV are hosting a variety of events celebrating the AAPI community. Take a look here at the events being held at a library near you!
6. Admire the The Library of Congress’ Jade Snow Wong Display
The Library of Congress has an exhibit highlighting the works of Jade Snow Wong on display until June 3. The exhibit includes Wong’s works as a ceramist and author that reflect on her experiences as a Chinese American, including a first edition of her autobiography. Learn more here.
7. Shop The Outrage’s AANHPI Pop-Up Market
D.C.’s activism-clothing shop, The Outrage, will be hosting an AANHPI Pop-Up Market on Saturday, May 27, featuring products from local small businesses owned by Asian American, Pacific Islander American, and Native American entrepreneurs. Learn more here.