Category Archives: Eats

Kids Can Get Cooking with Tiny Chefs!

Does your child love to help out in the kitchen? Are they the next Julia or Jacques or Ina or José? If your kid is keen on cooking — or maybe you want to introduce them to it in a fun way — there is a company who’s specialty is just that!

Tiny Chefs is the premier provider of kids cooking parties, classes, and camps in Washington, DC, Maryland, Virginia, and Connecticut. Their cooking events are a fun way for kids to flex their creative muscles, spend time working in peer groups, and best of all, introduce them to the joy of cooking and baking!

Cooking teaches kids valuable skills that they can carry with them through life. Children practice basic math when they measure ingredients, reading comprehension as they follow a recipe, and team building as they work in groups. Bonus: They also build a strong foundation for healthy eating.

Even more, all of these skills are mixed in with delicious food and fun. Check out Tiny Chefs services to see how you can book or work them and get your kids cooking!

This post is sponsored by Tiny Chefs, however, I only promote programs, services, and events that I genuinely believe in and think would appeal to KFDC readers.

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Filed under Birthday Parties, Camp, Class, DC, Eats, Educational, Maryland, Professional Service, Sponsored Post, Virginia

Scenes from a Day at the 2018 Maryland Renaissance Festival

Ready for a day of merriment!

Just in case you’ve missed the other 8,693 times I’ve mentioned it on the blog, the Maryland Renaissance Festival is, hands down, my favorite annual event in the DC area. It begins in late August and runs on weekends through late October, producing a whole 16th-century village teeming with merriment every year.

It doesn’t have to be May for a maypole in Revel Grove

We made our first excursion of the season there this past weekend. We try to go at least twice each year, as one day never feels like enough to enjoy the many, many festivities, plus there are pros (and cons) to going at different times. Early in the season, crowds are smaller (because it’s usually hot), and the admission fee is lower. Later in the season, the cool, crisp weather and autumn foliage adds some extra splendor to the visit (but also draws the masses).

A woodsy setting makes for nice shade early on and great foliage later!

It has become somewhat of a tradition to go with friends who we know enjoy it as much as we do, in the same way we do. We have a fairly laid back approach… we like to casually stroll around and take it all in, stop and watch performances as we happen upon them (generally, anyway), grab lot of bites to eat throughout the day, sip on snakebites as we wander, and let the kids enjoy lots of games and activities. Yes, this does mean we’re paying beyond admission, but costs for concessions and activities are quite reasonable, and we plan ahead to spend on them.

He’s been riding this slide since he was a baby (though we went tandem back then)

Medieval bowling?

Two shows we usually make a point of catching are the jousting matches and Wheel of Death. The former is a fantastic display of medieval pageantry as knights on horses battle it out, and the latter showcases a man performing amazing acrobatic feats on a towering contraption that looks like a hybrid of a windmill and hampster wheel. Unfortunately, we decided to skip the joust on Sunday because of the blazing heat and lack of shaded seats. The Wheel of Death, however, takes place under a lovely canopy of trees, so there was no missing that!

The Wheel of Death is a can’t-miss

I’ve written about Ren Fest a lot, including pretty recently, so I’ll just get to the scenes from our day. It really is a fantastic time, in my opinion, and I’d love to hear what all of you think about it if/when you go. Huzzah!

A festively adorned village

Dress like a Ren Fester — costumes for rent and to puchase!

Running in circles 😀

Funny things are everywhere…

Just $1 per slide!

Kids gather round for a hilarious puppet show

Watch a glass blowing demo and maybe even buy a freshly made piece

Food options galore!

You can’t go wrong with a turkey leg

A “No Holds Bard” wrestling match

An attempt to climb Jacob’s Ladder

Take home a new pet!

Or a dagger!

One last shot of the Wheel Walker… Huzzah!

Maryland Renaissance Festival
Where: Revel Grove | Crownsville, MD ( get directions)
When: Weekends August 25 – October 21, 10am – 7pm
Admission: $19-26/adult, $17-22/senior, $8-11/age 7-15, free/6 & under

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Filed under 2018, All ages, Annual, DC, Eats, Educational, Exhibit, Fall, Festival, Live Entertainment, Maryland, Music, Outdoor, Seasonal, Special Event, Weekend

Let the Merriment Begin…Ren Fest Returns this Weekend!

In case you weren’t aware (which must mean you’re new to KFDC), the Maryland Renaissance Festival is my very (very, very) favorite annual event in the area. I’ve rambled on about why so many times over the years, I’ll just direct you here, here, here, here, here, here, and here for the gist on why I love it so much.

In this post, you’ll find all the new info you need for this year’s event, plus some pics from last year to give you a glimpse of what to expect get you even more excited to go. Huzzah!

The merriment begins this Saturday, August 25, and runs every weekend, rain or shine, through October 21 in the lovely 16th century-style hamlet of Revel Grove in Crownsville, MD. Hours are 10am – 7pm. Admission is $19/adults, $17/seniors, $8/ages 7-15, free for 6 and under through September 9. After that, tickets go up to $26/adults, $22/seniors, $11/ages 7-15, still free for 6 and under. Multi-day passes that offer a discount are also available. Tickets can be reserved in advance online.

Special Days:
* August 25-26: Children’s Weekend – FREE admission for ages 15 and under with adult
* September 3: Senior’s Day – FREE admission for ages 62+
* September 8 & October 7: ASL Interpretation Days
* September 9: Renewal of Vows Ceremony — couples are invited to renew their commitment
* September 15-16: Celtic Celebration
* September 22-23: Special Guests – The Mediaeval Baebes
* September 29-30: Pirate Weekend — dress in your pirate best, aaargh!
* October 6-7: Shakespeare Weekend

* Bring a stroller or carrier for little ones, as there’s a lot of walking. I recommend a stroller that navigates over dirt paths easily.
* Get a map and schedule on your way in to help you navigate and plan your day
* If there’s show you really want to see, get to the stage a few minutes ahead of time to get good seats, so the kids have a good view.
* You might encounter less crowds on Sunday, when many folks are watching football
* Plan to spend on extras like food, games, and fun for kids (all reasonably priced, but it can add up)
* Let the kids dress up! Princesses, knights, fairies, pirates will fit right in.

Maryland Renaissance Festival
Where: Revel Grove | Crownsville, MD ( get directions)
When: Weekends August 25 – October 21, 10am – 7pm
Admission: $19-26/adult, $17-22/senior, $8-11/age 7-15, free/6 & under

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Filed under 2018, All ages, Annual, DC, Eats, Fall, Festival, Live Entertainment, Maryland, Outdoor, Special Event, Summer, Weekend

A Waterfront Destination for All at The District Wharf

This has been a weird summer for us. We’re doing some house renovations and, while exciting, it also has added a new level of hectic to our everyday. People are working in our space, loud noises are constant, boxes are everywhere, dust is everywhere, and there’s just general disarray (of both our digs and my mind).

Needless to say, we’ve been trying to get out of the house a lot — which isn’t too difficult given all there is to do around the area, not to mention exploring the area is kind of my thing. And one place that’s become somewhat of a new go-to hangout spot for us (on non-rainy days, anyway): The District Wharf.

The area at the southwest waterfront opened last fall after a few years of redevelopment, and it’s a major and much needed asset to DC, in my opinion. Where there used to be several large, unremarkable seafood restaurants dominating that stretch along the Potomac River is now a beautiful, lively riverside locale that really takes advantage of the location on the water and brings an easy-breezy vibe to this city that often feels a bit more buttoned up.

Much of the hype when it first opened was over its restaurant scene and outstanding music venue, The Anthem, but there is so much more to enjoy there — and for all ages. On nice days, you can easily spend a good few hours hanging out there with the kids.

There is a splash pad to play in, complete with rocking toys that are free to use. And it’s not just little ones who use it. Owen and Sasha and their friends have had fun in the sprays of water, plus we’ve seen older kids, adults, and even dogs enjoy them, too.

Large bench swings along the Recreation Pier require a stop. Sit or stand as you rock back and forth and take in the views or do some people watching. In the same area is The Wharf Boathouse, where there are kayaks and stand-up paddleboards for rent.

Further down Wharf Street, which runs nearly the whole length of the area and is driveable (watch out for cars!), you’ll find even more ways to enjoy some riverside recreation. The Transit Pier hosts a variety of activities, some that change with the seasons. There have been life-size games and outdoor concerts in the warm months, and the Wharf Ice Rink in the winter. The Water Taxi also operates from that area — you can catch a boat ride to (or from) Georgetown, Alexandria, and National Harbor.

There is also a big fire pit just off the main street that is great in winter, nice seating and lounging areas, the beautiful District Pier where festivals often take place, great people watching, not to mention the many eateries, shops, and smaller music venues.

The nicer restaurants tend to be the ones we hear about most, but there are a variety of options for a bite, including a few casual, very kid-friendly places. We usually go to Taylor Gourmet, and Shake Shack and Brighton are good for young diners, too. The Fish Market next to the new development also makes for a fun stop if you want fresh seafood. If you’re looking for something sweet, Ben & Jerry’s, Dolcezza Gelato, and Milk Bar are all good choices. (KFDC Tip: If you want to keep costs down, BYO or buy treats at the CVS there, then find some nice seating by the river where you can enjoy them. I once ran into a friend who was doing just that!)

If you’re planning a visit to The Wharf, definitely check to see if any special events are going on. Along with big festivals, there are often other happenings like free outdoor concerts, sports watching parties, and special performances.

And another KFDC Tip: If you drive, you can park at East Potomac Park, then ride the free jitney over to The Wharf. Not only do you avoid the hassle and cost of finding a spot for your car, you get to enjoy a fun, little cruise over in a boat! (Update: The Jitney operates daily from April through November, but only on weekends December and March, closed January & February. Hours are Monday – Friday 12pm until 30 minutes before sunset, and Saturday/Sunday/holidays 9am until 30 minutes before sunset. If you plan to ride it, be sure to check the status and make sure its operating that day, as it could be out of service for maintenance or repairs.)

Oh, in case it isn’t obvious, this all comes with the gorgeous backdrop of the marina and Potomac River views — and plenty of ways to sit back, relax, and enjoy them.

The District Wharf is located between Maine Avenue and the Potomac River from 6th to 10th Streets SW. Admission is free.


Filed under All ages, DC, Eats, Free, Outdoor, Weekdays, Weekend