by emma filar, marketing & communications associate

With summer came a lot of fun activities for all ages: the Museum’s Summer Block Party. A combination of programs, exhibitions, events—and an exciting new partnership with Hill Country Barbecue—made the Museum the place to be during the summer heat.

Mini Golf

For the second year in a row, the Museum showcased the innovative designs of local designers, architects, and builders in its Mini Golf exhibition. Expanded to two 9-hole courses and from Memorial Day to Labor Day, Mini Golf drew record crowds, especially at six late night events held throughout the summer.

Blue Course

Green Course






Golf Balls


Architecture 101

Architecture 101 is a lecture series that provides a broader understanding of architectural “styles.” These programs explore significant periods in architectural history, serving as a refresher course for the professional or student or providing the novice with a chance to learn more about the world of architecture. This year, we surveyed visitors online as to what architectural styles they wanted to learn about, and selected Miesian and Expressionism.


Summer Concerts

The Museum continued to enjoy a partnership with the Washington Performing Arts Society (WPAS), with whom we hosted free concerts in the Great Hall. These well attended events featured performances by Luis Garay Percussion World, the KanKouran West African Dance Company, the WPAS Children of the Gospel Choir, and WPAS Summer Steps with Step Afrika!

Hill Country Barbecue

“There’s nothing quite like enjoying a cold beer and hot barbecue outside on a summer day,” says Jim Foss, director of operations, Hill Country Barbecue Market – DC. “We were thrilled to team up with the National Building Museum over the summer to serve up Hill Country barbecue, Shiner beer and live music by local and touring artists on the west lawn of the Museum.”

Over the course of the 2013 summer, more than 16,500 guests visited the HC Backyard Barbecue at the National Building Museum with nearly 70 bands playing on the deck of SproutSpace or inside the museum on rainy days. Hill Country was also excited to be a part of the Summer Block Party, providing food and drink to museum guests waiting for their turn to play the mini golf courses on select Thursday nights throughout the season.



Images: Photos by Rachel Naft Photography.