kelly magyarics

washington, d.c.-based wine, spirits, travel & lifestyle writer / wine educator


Celebrate the Spirit of 76 with DC's hottest bar stars

repeal day

Last year's celebration in DC of the 75th anniversary of the repeal of Prohibition was filled with fab cocktails (many of them throwbacks...I remember a gorgeous Aviation), toasts both classy and bawdy, and revelers decked out in 1920's attire (I saw more than one gorgeous fringed dress that I would love to have in my closet.)

This year's fete is shaping up to be even bigger and better. Touted as the Spirit of 76 (get it? 76 years since Prohibition was repealed?),  the Second Annual Repeal Day Ball hosted by the DC Craft Bartender’s Guild (DCCBG) will take place at PS7 (777 Eye Street NW) on Repeal Day, December 5th, from 9 P.M. to midnight for general admission, and from 8 P.M. to midnight for VIP ticket holders. Attendees will enjoy craft cocktails from the city and country’s best mixologists and food from renowned chef Peter Smith while dancing along to the Prohibition-era sounds of the Red Hot Rhythm Chiefs.

This year’s ball location happens to be across from historic Calvary Baptist Church, the first national convention site of the Anti-Saloon League, which launched the legislative agenda for Prohibition. DC's “Founding Drinkers” will be dressed as the founding fathers. 

Dan Searing, vice president of the DCCBG and co-owner of Room 11, calls the event “…a celebration of one of our most important freedoms, to imbibe responsibly. A freedom our founding fathers celebrated enthusiastically.” 

Local favorites including Gina Chersevani, Derek Brown and Todd Thrasher will be joined by bartending legend Dale DeGroff, nationally-renowned bartender Tad Carducci, and toastmaster Jeffrey Morgenthaler. There will also be top spirit brands and a special rum and cigar lounge. 

VIP guests will gain entry early and enjoy exclusive access to the bartenders, special demonstrations, heavy hor d’ouevres and the first release copy of The Lush Life: Portraits from the Bar by author and illustrator Jill DeGroff, along with access to VIP after-parties at the city's top cocktail bars. 

Tickets are $100 for general admission ($150 for VIP) and can be purchased online at A portion of the final proceeds will go to benefit the Museum of the American Cocktail in New Orleans. 

Don't wait! Buy your tickets now to what will no doubt be the event of the holiday season.