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'By The People' Arts Festival


Throughout the weekend, a floating art installation titled “They Are Us, Us Is Them,” by For Freedoms co-founder Hank Willis Thomas will be docked in Anacostia Park. (Over the course of the festival, the barge has moved up and down D.C.’s Potomac and Anacostia rivers, visiting the Georgetown Waterfront and Capitol Riverfront as well. 

By The People programming in Anacostia Park will include music, spoken word, performance art, interactive riverside mural-painting pop-up and other participatory art projects. For instance, participants of all ages will be invited to make signs, inspired by Hank Willis Thomas’ work, expressing what freedom means to them. 

Other festival events at satellite locations will be held at the Anacostia Arts Center, the Capitol View Neighborhood Library, Congress Heights Arts & Culture Center, CulturalDC’s Mobile Art Gallery at THEARC and Nubian Hueman.

The entirely free festival focuses on our country’s founding principles of life, liberty and the pursuit of happiness – “all with the goal of connecting people from diverse backgrounds, building bridges across the cultural divide and promoting open and civil discourse,” said Kate Goodall, CEO of festival organizer Halcyon – a nonprofit that supports civic-minded artists and social entrepreneurs. Registration is encouraged. Visit

Partners and sponsors include: Events DC, Bank of America|Bank of America Private Bank, D.C. Office of the Deputy Mayor for Planning and Economic Development (DMPED), S&R Foundation, GEICO, Goldman Sachs Philanthropy Fund, WDCEP, EDENS, Union Market, Smithsonian’s Arts + Industries Building, Smithsonian Institution, Destination DC, D.C. Commission on the Arts and Humanities, Eaton DC, Georgetown BID, Capitol Riverfront BID, Anacostia BID, The Levy Group, The Stafford Foundation, Compass, Glenfiddich, Total Wine & More, Grand Cuisine, WUSA9, Sage Communications, Verizon Fios, Sterling Motorcars, The Menkiti Group, San-J International, Capital One Bank, Foodhini, MJ Valet, KIND Snacks and ARTECHOUSE.