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Mason jars: They’re not just for faux-rustic wedding tablescapes anymore! Canning, once considered the purview of Depression-era housewives, has surged amid economic woes and a rising interest in local produce. Daniel Gasteiger, the featured speaker at the Silver Spring Garden Club’s March meeting, has written a nice little book on the subject with a title that’s both cringeworthy and charming: Yes, You Can! And Freeze and Dry It, Too. Though it’s possible to overdo canning—Portlandia has predictably knocked hipster pickling, and I can attest that if you tote pickled okra to one too many parties you will be nicknamed “the pickle girl”—it’s a valuable means of food preservation that results in healthier, cheaper, and better-tasting meals. Tonight’s presentation will examine the cultural context of food-saving and walk through several ways to keep those $4 farmers market tomatoes lasting well into fall. Gasteiger speaks at 8 p.m. at the Brookside Gardens Visitors Center, 1800 Glenallan Ave., Wheaton. montgomeryparks.org. (301) 962-1400. (Brooke Hatfield)


Tarantella, the Italian folk dance, was rumored in the 16th and 17th centuries to relieve tarantism—-the deadly condition caused by a tarantula’s bite. Today, the form is more relevant as a really good party. Harpist and lutenist Christina Pluhar, along with her ensemble L’Arpeggiata, has concocted a mostly joyous program based on the tarantella—-one that borrows from early music; whittles it down to a lean, jazz-combo format; and adds some truly spectacular dance. L’Arpeggiata performs at 8 p.m. at the Library of Congress’ Coolidge Auditorium, 1st Street and Independence Avenue SE. Free, but tickets required. (202) 397-7328.


Craft beer geeks have even more reason to visit Pizzeria Paradiso in Georgetown tonight. The brew-centric restaurant is offering a five-course dinner (six, if you count the snack) highlighting a selection of suds from Seattle’s Elysian Brewing Co. On the menu: a sweet potato pecan dip, chopped salad, house-made country pate, and two types of pizza—-one with poached salmon, the other with corned beef and cabbage—-all paired up with distinctive brews. Dessert is a chocolate brownie with a sauce made from Elysian’s Dragon’s Tooth Stout. Price is $65 per person; seatings at 6:30 p.m. and 9 p.m. For availability, send an email to events@eatyourpizza.comPizzeria Paradiso, 3282 M St. NW, (202) 337-1245. (Chris Shott)

Photo by Flickr user sleepyneko used under a Creative Commons license.