Can’t-Miss May Events in DC | Apartminty

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Rounding up our list of favorite events in May is tough – there are too many good ones to choose from! From Cinco de Mayo celebrations to getting physical outside, May is jam-packed with events. There is a good mix of free events throughout the month, which we love, of course. While there are several events at some of DC’s greatest venues, we are excited to get outside and enjoy all of the outdoor happenings. May always sets the bar high for summer, because it is always a fun-filled month. This year is no different, and we are already loving it. These can’t-miss events in DC this May are our favorites to attend, but trust us when we say, there are plenty more to choose from. 

Passport DC

Passport DC is a month-long celebration of the cultural traditions and diversity in DC. The month of May is cultural awareness month, and what better way to celebrate than by exploring DC’s various embassies, traditions, cuisine, and entertainment. Passport DC’s main event is the Around the World Embassy Tour. The Around the World Embassy Tour takes place on Saturday, May 4th, and participants can explore and enjoy the food, art, dance, fashion, and more at the various Embassies throughout the city. Other events that occur throughout the month as a part of Passport DC include Flower Mart, the European Union Open House, and Fiesta Asia.

When: May 1st – 31st, 2019
Where: Various Embassies throughout DC
Cost: Free


Running of the Chihuahuas

I don’t know about you, but there is no way I’d rather celebrate Cinco de Mayo than by watching the Running of the Chihuahuas. The Wharf puts on quite the show to celebrate these little pups, and we are all for it. Cold beers, a costume contest, live music, and delicious food are all a part of the festivities. Interested in having your pup race? It is $30 per dog and is exclusively for half or full mixed Chihuahuas. No dog? No worries! It is just as enjoyable wandering around The Wharf, enjoying the sites, food, and cold drinks while live music fills the area. 

When: Saturday, May 4th, 2019 | 1:00 – 5:00 PM
Where: The Wharf
Cost: Free


Queens of Egypt: The Mother of All Parties

Travel back in time and see what the women of Egypt were all about, you will quickly realize they were queens. BYT and National Geographic are putting on an epic party to celebrate the Queens of Egypt exhibit, and you don’t want to miss it. An open bar, DJ set, and lightning talks from woman explorers and scientists will make for a fun and interesting evening. Explore the exhibit, enjoy a live drum performance, and get the perfect royal cat-eye makeup at the event’s hair & makeup station. Tickets are just $55 and include access into the party as well as access to the open bar. Put on your perfect Egyptian Queen outfit and get ready for a night to remember. 

When: Friday, May 10th, 2019 | 8:30 PM – 12:30 AM
Where: National Geographic Museum | 1600 M St. NW
Cost: Tickets Begin at $55


U Street’s Funk Parade

 Its time to get funky – the U Street Funk Parade is back! This day-long fair and street festival is one of our favorite Spring celebrations here in DC. U Street comes alive with music, art, entertainment, and much more. Countless performers make wandering the street even more enjoyable than it already is. The festival takes place from 1:00 – 7:00 PM, but it doesn’t end there. The parade is from 5:00 – 6:00 PM and the celebrations end with a nighttime music fest from 7:00 PM – 12:00 AM, with a featured showcase at 8:00 PM. That is a lot of entertainment for one day, but we promise you it is worth seeing. The Funk Parade is a chance for us to come together and celebrate DC’s music and art scene. 

When: Saturday, May 11th, 2019 | 1:00 – 7:00 PM
Where: U Street NW
Cost: Free


DC Bike Ride

On May 18th, enjoy a beautiful May morning with a recreational bike ride through the Nation’s Capital. The DC Bike Ride is a family-friendly bike ride for all ages and all abilities. The 20-mile ride takes you past several landmarks as well as the National Mall. No race is complete without a Finish Festival, and the DC Bike Ride will have a good one! Live music, food, drinks, and fun activities will be the perfect end to a relaxing ride. Grab some friends and family, gear up, and get ready to ride through the most beautiful city. 

When: Saturday, May 18th, 2019 | 8:00 AM
Where: West Potomac Park | 100 West Basin Drive SW
Cost: Registration begins at $32.50


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15 Items to Keep in Your Tornado Safe Space

Did you know the U.S. has an average of more than 1,000 tornadoes recorded each year?

There are two regions with an excessively high frequency of tornadoes. Florida is one and “Tornado Alley” in the south-central United States is the other, according to NOAA.

If you’re in the part of the country that’s prone to tornadoes, you need to have a safe room to go to when the weather turns bad.

Your safe spot will shield you from the wind, hail and flying debris. A safe location should have no windows and could be a basement, storm cellar or an interior room on the lowest floor of your apartment building. An interior closet or bathroom in your apartment is also a safe place to hunker down in.

Items to keep in your tornado safe space

When you have to go to your safe space, you never know how long you’ll be there. It could be 30 minutes and it could be for several hours. You need to be prepared, not only with essentials but also with things to keep you and your family distracted and calm. We’ve organized a list to help get you through the storm with useful items for your safe space.

1. Water and snacks

Water and munchies are a must for everyone in your safe space. Plan ahead with water bottles and non-perishables. Keep foodstuffs organized.

Have a bag you can grab to take with you to a storm shelter or your safe space in your apartment.

water bottleswater bottles

2. Baby and toddler food

Have a baby in the family? Be sure to have formula, bottles and baby food with utensils ready for your tornado safe space. Or, pack it to take to a shelter.

If you’ve got a toddler, have Cheerios and other favorites in resealable plastic bags for easy accessibility.

3. NOAA radio

You should get a weather radio so you can listen to NOAA Weather Radio. It will keep you tuned in to emergency info about tornado watches and warnings.

4. Footwear

You don’t know what the conditions will be like during the weather event and post-storm climate. FEMA recommends wearing closed-toe shoes like boots or sturdy sneakers. A likelihood of broken glass and other rubble that could prove dangerous.


5. Protective gear

In case of the tornado hitting full out in your area, be ready for anything. Keep bike helmets to protect from falling debris with you. Have a helmet for everyone in the family.

And if you have room and the time to drag it, bring a mattress with you. It could protect the entire family in case of flying glass, doors or other debris.

6. First aid kit

Prepare a small backpack with Band-Aids, antiseptic wipes and more, or buy a first aid kit that’s already full of necessities.

If a tornado warning occurs, you can grab the backpack on your way to a storm shelter, or stash one in your apartment’s safe space.

7. Sanitation and hygiene supplies

How long will you be in your tornado safe spot? Only Mother Nature knows for sure. Since it’s always better to be ready ahead of time, have a few personal hygiene supplies on hand. Think disposable towels, hand sanitizers, portable tissue packs, toilet paper and trash bags.

hand sanitizerhand sanitizer

8. Necessities for kids

Be sure to pack a safe space or shelter bag with necessities, such as diapers and wipes for babies. Also, have a go-bag with anything special your toddler needs. Include favorite washcloths that could prove useful.

9. Flashlights

Power losses are likely when high winds blow. Be sure to have a battery-operated lantern and other flashlights. Also, plan ahead with extra batteries.

10. Cell phone chargers

Don’t risk your cell phone going to black. You may not have power, so be prepared with a portable universal battery cell phone charger. Find one with USB ports for several phones.

11. Personal docs

It’s always smart to keep important documents in one place. In a storm situation, keep them in a waterproof bag. Safeguard your passport, insurance papers and your checkbook.

12. Activities for kids

If you have little kids, be sure to have supplies to keep them busy while you wait out the wind. It will be a good distraction.

Charge iPads charged, bring crayons and coloring books, a board game and favorite stuffed animals for nap time. Have pillows and blankets, too.

coloring bookcoloring book

13. Adult distractions

Adults need their own versions of safe space distractions. Have your iPad mini and access to the novel you’re reading (or listening to). Bring your crossword puzzle book and the like.

Have pillows and a blanket in your safe space, too. These things could help make the waiting period for the storm to pass more bearable.

14. Dog or cat accessories

Does your dog or cat get traumatized in thunder, wind and rain? Have a thunder vest or shirt that they can wear. It can squash anxiety through gentle, constant pressure.

Create a spot where cats will feel safe to hide under a blanket. Also have water, food, treats and toys for your pets.

15. Meds and eyeglasses

Remember to keep your medications and eyeglasses (and contact lenses) with you in a storm. Keep headache pills and other medications you take in your safe space, or in the shelter bag you’ve packed. Include daily prescriptions, insulin, epinephrine auto-injectors and anything else you may need, along with contact lens solution and eye drops.

After the storm

According to the Weather Channel, it’s critical to be sure that a storm has truly passed before going outside. Check for updates on your NOAA Weather Radio, local broadcasts or cell phone. These outlets will be able to provide the latest weather information related to the storm where you live.




What is a Walk-Up Apartment?

No elevator. Just you and some stairs.

A walk-up apartment is an apartment located in a building accessible only by stairs. There’s no elevator to reach the upper floors of the building — just your legs and lots of steps.

Things to consider before moving into a walk-up apartment

Walk-up apartments can be a lot of work so they might seem less desirable. Due to the low demand, that means they can be more affordable — even in an expensive city like Manhattan.

Buildings with walk-up apartments are usually smaller and have fewer tenants, giving you a more private living situation. And you can ditch the gym membership since you’ll be getting your exercise every day via the stairs.

But there are lots of obvious downsides to a walk-up apartment. If you decide to move into one, it’ll be difficult hauling all of your furniture up multiple flights of stairs. It can be tiring walking up and down stairs each day and even worse if you’re someone who’s bouncing in and out of the house regularly.

Pros of a walk-up apartment

  • More affordable rent price
  • Exercise
  • More privacy

Cons of a walk-up apartment

  • Difficult to move into
  • Tiring
  • Not ideal for someone who is frequently in and out of the house

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It’s all about perspective

Whether or not a walk-up apartment is right for you all comes down to your perspective. What one person views as a pro might be viewed as a con to you or vice-versa. Make sure the pros outweigh the cons from your perspective before moving into a walk-up apartment.

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7 Apartment Winter Maintenance Tips for Renters

Winter always seems to sneak up on us, year after year. Because most climates experience the most dramatic change in weather during the colder months, it’s important to understand what apartment winter maintenance or preparatory tasks you’ll be responsible for at your rental property.

While some tasks fall on the shoulders of your landlord or property manager, there are certain steps you can take as a renter to ensure a safe and comfortable winter at home.

1. Check in with your landlord or property manager

Before the winter hits, touch base with your landlord if you’re unclear on what are tenant responsibilities and what are landlord responsibilities. Who’s responsible for removing snow and ice at the property, and what are the expectations?

Some states have local snow and ice removal regulations regarding public sidewalks or other public areas. Discuss acceptable de-icing measures to make sure you aren’t causing damage to any surfaces.


2. Test out the heat

While it’s your landlord’s responsibility to have heating and cooling systems serviced regularly, it’s helpful to turn on the heat a bit early for a short period of time to make sure everything is functioning properly.

It’s always better to learn about any issues ahead of time instead of discovering a winter maintenance problem in your apartment when the cold temperatures set in.

3. Avoid unwanted guests

Cooler weather and more precipitation means bugs, rodents and other pests are looking for a warm place to call home. An easy way to attract unwanted pests is by providing them with a food source, so be sure to take a few preventative steps, especially now that many of us are cooking at home more than ever before.

Store your dry, perishable food items inside air-tight containers that pests can’t chew through. Try to take trash containing food scraps out as soon as possible instead of letting it sit. Aim to wipe down countertops at least once each day to get rid of crumbs and food remnants.

4. Prevent frozen pipes

Be sure to follow all of your landlord’s instructions to avoid frozen or burst pipes due to cold weather. Most landlords or property managers will provide guidance on temperature levels and other preventative measures to avoid this issue.

If you’re leaving on vacation or will otherwise be away from your rental for a period of time this winter, give your landlord a heads up and ask if they want you to set the temperature at a certain point or leave a couple of faucets on a slow drip.

woman with blanket and coffeewoman with blanket and coffee

5. Stay warm and save money

Of course, you want to be comfortable in your own home, but keeping a few things in mind when it comes to turning on the heat can have a dramatic impact on your monthly bill. Experts say you can save up to 10 percent on your yearly heating expenses by turning down the thermostat just 7-10 degrees for approximately eight hours per day, like while you’re at work or while you’re sleeping.

Ceiling fans are an excellent tool to help distribute heat evenly. Many models have a switch that forces blades to spin clockwise, which will push warm air down into a room.

6. Be prepared for emergencies

If you live in an area where winter weather and storms are a frequent occurrence, it’s wise to make sure you’re prepared ahead of time for any worst-case scenarios. Sign up for weather and emergency alert systems to stay informed about any potentially threatening storms and actions should take. In general, stay indoors during major storms and avoid road travel until it is safe to do so.

7. Notify your landlord of any issues as soon as possible

Common winter issues like ice dams, frozen pipes or issues with the heating system can quickly spiral out of control. It’s important to keep tabs on your home and alert your landlord of any potential issues as soon as possible so they can be taken care of as quickly as possible.

Winter is coming

Whether you’re dreading winter or it’s your favorite season, taking the time to prepare your apartment for winter maintenance will help set you up for success as a renter. Come to a clear and established understanding of what your responsibilities are and what your landlord is responsible for, and make sure to hold up your end of the bargain.