Category Archives: Fall

National Children’s Chorus Launches Online Conservatory – Apply Now for Fall 2020!


The National Children’s Chorus Academy based in Washington, DC, provides children ages 5 to 17 the opportunity to learn and grow in an extraordinary online musical environment this fall. The country’s leading music educators work with students in small groups weekly to develop their vocal and musicianship skills from the most basic concepts through the college level. Tone quality, breath support and musical expression are cultivated within the individual singers, while working together as an ensemble culminates in an exciting array of virtual performances, presenting world premieres and collaborating with an exceptional roster of professional artists from around the world.


Additionally, students have the exclusive opportunity to participate in annual international summer tours and national concerts at premier venues such as Carnegie Hall and Lincoln Center. With a spectacular musicianship curriculum to accompany its first-rate vocal training, the National Children’s Chorus is an unparalleled educational resource for children who love to sing! If your child has musical ability, don’t waste another minute. Children ages 5 to 17 are invited to apply. Set up a virtual audition today!

Online courses include:
Ensemble Training (Virtual Choir Videos) • Individualized Coachings with Conductors • Musicianship & Kodály Method • Voice Class • Advanced Ear Training • Advanced Sight Singing • Masterclass Series

Apply now to book a virtual audition and attend the online information presentation on August 16th!

APPLY HERE


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Filed under 2020, DC, Fall, Gradeschoolers, Live Entertainment, Middle Schoolers

2020 Vision: 10 Awesome Things Families Can Look Forward to in DC this Year

To infinity and beyond… Yayoi Kusama’s art will return to DC this year


Some people make New Year’s resolutions, I make new… plans. (Well, mental notes for plans, anyway.) I like to take a look ahead at the coming year, see what new and exciting things are on the horizon, and put them on my radar to, hopefully, enjoy at some point — and, of course, share with the KFDC community. Which is just what I’ve done here. With this new year comes many opportunities for awesome experiences. Here are 10 that I think will be especially appealing to DC families. Happy 2020!

1. National Children’s Museum | Late January
The much anticipated reopening of the redesigned and newly-located museum especially for children is slated for the end of January. And if the sneak peek back in the fall is a good indicator of what’s to come, it sounds like the wait will be worth it. There will be STEAM-focused exhibits and creative play spaces, with the Dream Machine, a three-story climber and slide, as the centerpiece. This will all be easily accessible right downtown at Woodrow Wilson Plaza, next to the Ronald Reagan Building. I’ll, of course, keep you posted on opening specifics as more details are released.

2. The Lane | February
How I wish something like this existed when my kids were younger! Opening in February, The Lane Social Club will be a place where families — kids and parents — can hang. And by hang, I mean engage in active play, partake in special programming, throw birthday parties, enjoy good food or a drink, and make new friends. This is all the brainchild of two local moms, Rachel and Molly, who decided to make their yearning for a venue like this a reality. I’ve had a chance to spend some time with them, and can tell you that 1) They have thought of all the details 2) You’ll want to include them among those new friends. The location is in Ivy City near the new Target. Look for more info about the opening soon!

Get ready to welcome back the World Series Champions!

3. Nationals Baseball Season | March – October
Rooting for our home team isn’t a new thing, but cheering them on as the World Series Champions is — and it definitely adds some extra excitement to the anticipation of the Nats baseball season. Sure, the roster has changed a bit (we miss you, Tony!) but most of the squad is returning, and there are a couple of new players to watch out for. Plus, I’ve always recommended a day at the ballpark as a fun way to enjoy family time together. While Opening Day is March 26, the first home game this year isn’t until April 2. You can view the whole schedule here, and as you’re planning for game days, be sure to check out these KFDC tips first.

4. Yayoi Kusama Returns to the Hirshhorn | April 4 – September 20
Three years ago, Yayoi Kusama’s Infinity Mirrors exhibition at the Hirshhorn was the hot ticket to score. The presentation of five infinity rooms — immersive installations that transformed small rooms into boundless wonderlands with brilliant, imaginative sculptures and mirror-lined walls — caused quite a frenzy among art enthusiasts, Instagram fiends, and what seemed like everyone else, for that matter. I, personally, had mixed feelings about it — I loved the art, but wasn’t super keen on the viewing experience. This spring, some of Kusama’s works, including two infinity rooms, are coming back to the museum for an exhibit called One with Eternity. This time, there will be no advance tickets, just same-day passes. Fingers crossed it will be easier to get them!

5. Planet Word Museum | May 31
I am so intrigued by and excited for this opening! With a mission to “inspire a love of words and language,” the museum promises immersive exhibits and magical experiences to demonstrate how words and language help shape our lives. According to the website, there will be all kinds of word play opportunities (that go well beyond your crosswords and Scrabble) — create a marketing campaign, give a famous speech and watch it, hear authors read from their books, join songwriting and storytelling classes, and more. Details for visiting aren’t yet available, but I’ll be sure to share when they are!

6. Hamilton Revisits the Kennedy Center | June 16 – September 20
If you missed seeing the award winning Broadway smash when it was here in 2018 (like I did) and still have yet to see it anywhere else (like me), you have another chance this summer. Hamilton will be back at the Kennedy Center for a three-month run. Tickets will go on sale in the spring, and tip: Kennedy Center members always get first dibs at a selection of tickets (though this didn’t do me much good last time, as there was an online glitch and I got booted out of the system before finishing my purchase… but I’m not throwin’ away my shot to try for them again). It’s recommended for kids ages 10 and up, so be sure to take that into consideration and get some feedback if you’re hoping to bring children younger than that.

7. The Bard at the Building Museum
This year’s Summer Block Party at the National Building Museum is presented as a partnership with the Folger Shakespeare Library. Shakespeare’s Playhouse will feature an Elizabethan-inspired outdoor stage, designed by a team from the University of South Carolina, in the cool comfort of the museum’s Great Hall. Guests will be able to engage in Shakespearean activities, like stage combat, during the day, and in the evenings, there will be performances of the enchanting A Midsummer Night’s Dream. (PS: If you think Shakespeare and kids don’t mix, think again! Read about some of our experiences with it here and here.)

The Smithsonian Folklife Festival brings international art and culture to DC every summer

8. Smithsonian Folklife Festival | June 24-28, July 1-5
The Smithsonian Folklife Festival is far from a new event to DC, but I’m including it here because after being shortened to a weekend last year, it will return to its regular, longer 10-day run. I always recommend checking out the festivities on the National Mall during that time, because they’re always a fantastic celebration of living cultural heritage, showcasing different regions around the world through hands-on activities, performances, demonstrations, and exhibits for all ages to enjoy. And the great thing about the return to the long run is more opportunities to go. This summer, Brazil and the United Arab Emirates will be highlighted as well as the U.S. Department of Energy Solar Decathlon and Smithsonian Conservation Commons. Admission to all of it is free. Read about and get a glimpse of the 2018 festival here.

9. MLK Jr. Library Reopening | Fall
DC’s flagship public library closed in early 2017 to undergo a major renovation, and it will reopen this fall with loads of modernized features. Newly designed spaces include an transparent entryway, large auditorium and conference center, creative spaces for the arts, a ground level café with a patio, an interactive children’s space, and more. And like all of our public libraries, there will be programming to go along with it, with plenty of it especially for kids. MLK Jr. Library is located in Penn Quarter at 9th and G Streets NW.

10. Presidential Election | November 3
So, this is more an ongoing event for 2020 even though the actual election isn’t until November. It also reaches well beyond DC, but it’s always especially interesting and exciting (and stressful) to be here during the race for the White House. Kids all over the country learn about our government and politics, but here in DC ours practically have front row seats for it. For a related activity, take a tour of the U.S. Capitol. And as we head into the election year, note these important dates: DC primaries are June 2, Maryland primaries are April 28, and Virginia primaries are March 3. Be sure to vote — and bring your kiddos along!

What are you looking forward to most in the coming year? Leave a comment and let us know!


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Filed under 2020, All ages, Annual, Art, DC, Educational, Exhibit, Fall, Festival, Free, Indoor Play, Live Entertainment, Museums, Outdoor, Special Event, Sports, Spring, Summer, Theatre, Winter

The Weekend Round-Up: December 20-22

Biking the “Lightbattle” at Georgetown Glow


Happy Weekend! And Happy Chanukah to all celebrating on Sunday!

Holiday Entertainment
Where: Theatres around the DMV
When: Throughout the weekend
Admission: Varies by venue

If you’re looking for holiday-inspired entertainment to get into the spirit of the season, there’s plenty of it! Stomp along at Step Afrika’s Magical, Musical Holiday Step Show at the Atlas. There are several versions of The Nutcracker, including one on strings. Storybook classics like The Velveteen Rabbit at Adventure Theatre and The Lion, the Witch, and the Wardrobe at Imagination Stage. Catch An Irish Carol at Keegan Theatre, and enjoy a Candlelight Christmas at the Kennedy Center. Get details on these shows and many, many more in the 2019 Guide to the Holiday Season. (PS: Adventure Theatre has a special promo going on: Use the code 5OFF to save $5 on tickets for select dates, including this Saturday at 11am!)

Season’s Greenings
Where: U.S. Botanic Garden | National Mall area, DC
When: Throughout the weekend
Admission: Free

Easily one of DC’s most popular holiday attractions, Season’s Greenings is an annual delight for all ages. The conservatory exhibit features Washington landmarks constructed from plant materials, including a new botanical inspired National Museum of African American History & Culture. But the highlight, hands-down, is the garden railway, which never fails to impress and enchant with intricate, imaginative designs. This year’s America’s Gardens-themed exhibit features structures from botanical gardens across the US. Get a glimpse of it before you go in this KFDC post.

Enchant
Where: Nationals Park | Capitol Riverfront, DC
When: Through December 29
Admission: Varies by Date, time, and age

There’s been a lot of buzz about the new holiday attraction at Nationals Park — and I think it’s deserving. The world’s largest Christmas light maze and market is dazzling and delightful and really captures the spirit of the holidays. Purchase tickets here, and read a KFDC review of it, including tips for visiting, if you haven’t already.

Cirque Dreams Holidaze
Where: MGM | National Harbor, MD
When: Friday, Saturday, & Sunday (& Monday)
Tickets: $32-99+ (find discount)

Cirque Dreams Holidaze lights up the 2019 holiday season with its popular and electrifying stage spectacular. Over 300 imaginative costumes, 20 world-class astonishing acts, the finest singers, original music and seasonal favorites celebrate Thanksgiving, Chanukah, Christmas and New Year’s in a 2 hour breathtaking spectacle. Audiences of all ages will marvel at soaring acrobatics, gravity defying feats and extravagant theatrical production numbers.

More Holiday Happenings
Where: Around the DMV
When: Throughout the weekend
Admission: Varies by activity

There’s so much holiday fun to be had around DC, and at every price point. Celebrate Christmas at Mount Vernon, Prez George’s old digs. Take a street car ride with Santa at the Holly Trolley Fest. Ride the Magical Holiday Express at the B&O Railroad Museum. Check out the various activities at National Harbor. Find details on all of these events and many more in the 2019 Holiday Guide.

Georgetown Glow
Where: Around the Georgetown neighborhood, DC
When: Through January 5
Admission: Free

See Georgetown in a whole new, cool light — literally. Georgetown Glow has the neighborhood sparkling with modern light art installations on exhibit throughout the bustling community. Works of local, regional, and international artists are on display in both public and privately-owned spaces, including Georgetown Waterfront Park, on M Street, along the C&O Canal, and more nearby places. Take the family to dinner, then go for a stroll to check them all out. Get a glimpse of a past light show here.

Star Wars Nerf Nights
Where: Badlands Playspace | Rockville, MD
When: Friday, 5:30-8pm
Admission: $30/child includes dinner buffet

Badlands invites kids ages 7+ to join them for an evening of team based challenges. Participants are encouraged to bring the blaster of their choosing and protective eye wear. Badlands will provide the foam darts, a complimentary dinner for the kids, and FUN! PS: Be on the lookout for more weekly themed Nerf nights, including Pokemon, Fortnite, Superheros, and much more.

Miracle on 8th Street
Where: Miracle Theater | Capitol Hill, DC
When: Friday, Saturday, & Sunday
Admission:

Celebrate the season at the Miracle Theater (located on 8th Street SE) as they show holiday movie classics all weekend. Among the films they’re screening: The Polar Express, Elf, It’s a Wonderful Life, National Lampoon’s Christmas Vacation, White Christmas, and A Christmas Story. Visit the website for showtimes and to purchase tickets online.

Portrait Stories & Discoveries
Where: National Portrait Gallery
When: Saturday & Sunday, 1-4pm
Admission: Free

Perfectly timed for the movie about to open… Drop in at the National Portrait Gallery to listen to a story about Little Women author Louisa May Alcott and complete a hands-on activity. When you’re done there, pick up a Portrait Discovery Kit to explore the museum. For more about the program and the museum, see this post and this one. And before or after your museum visit, plan to stop by the Downtown Holiday Market for some holiday shopping and cheer!

Hirshhorn/DRAW
Where: Hirshhorn Museum | National Mall, DC
When: Saturday & Sunday, 2-3pm
Admission: Free

Join a free gallery sketching session that pairs an artwork with a drawing exercise. Throughout December, look closely and sketch Sieves in Marcel Duchamp: The Barbara and Aaron Levine Collection. No prior drawing or art experience needed. All ages are welcome. Just drop by, pick up a pencil and a clipboard, and draw!

More Show Time
Where: Around the DMV
When: Throughout the weekend
Admission: Varies by show

* Reserve free tickets for ‘Twas the Night Before Christmas, this week’s Saturday Morning at the National performance
* Shakespeare Theatre Company’s version of Peter Pan and Wendy is a magical experience (find discounts)
* See The Snow Queen at Synetic Theatre (find discounts)
* Take littles to see Art on the Horizon’s Squeakers and Mr. Gumdrop
* Spend Saturday morning with the Great Zucchini at Jammin Java
* Don’t Let the Pigeon Drive the Bus! (The Musical) is at the Kennedy Center (review here, look for tickets here)
* Take the fam to a performance of Singin’ in the Rain at Olney Theatre (find discounts)
* Let Newsies entertain you at Arena Stage (find discounts)
* Make it a date night for Dear Jack Dear Louise at Arena Stage (find discounts)

Fun on Ice
Where: Ice rinks around the DMV
When: Throughout the weekend
Admission: Varies by venue

Celebrate the winter solstice weekend with a quintessential seasonal activity — ice skating! Head outside if weather permits: Glide above the Potomac at The Wharf; enjoy art as you skate at the Sculpture Garden; skim over the meandering paths at Canal Park; circle the rink at Washington Harbour; or do some shopping along with your skating at Pentagon Row, Tyson’s Corner, Veteran’s Plaza, Rockville Town Square, or Reston Town Center. If it’s raining, take it indoors at Fort Dupont Ice Arena in DC, Cabin John or Herbert Wells Ice Rinks in Maryland, or MedStar Ice Arena in Ballston. This post has details on all these ice skating options in the area.

Light the Way
Where: Around the DMV
When: Friday, Saturday, & Sunday Evenings
Admission: Varies by locale

Twinkling lights forming enchanting displays are easily a holiday season favorite. Visit one of several parks (or the National Zoo, Mormon Temple, or Georgetown) in the area that has transformed into a sparkling wonderland. Some you can walk through for an up-close experience, others you tour by car. Either way, expect to be dazzled.

Hoops-de-doo
Where: Around the DMV
When: Throughout the weekend
Admission: Tickets prices vary

With so many universities in the area, there’s always some good college basketball action going on during the season — and it’s always a good time for families. Here are some games to watch this weekend:
* George Washington women vs James Madison on Friday at 7pm
* George Mason women vs Howard on Saturday at 12pm
* George Washington men vs Harvard on Saturday at 12pm
* Georgetown men vs Samford on Saturday at 12pm
* George Mason men vs UMBC on Saturday at 4pm
* American women vs GWU on Sunday at 2pm
* Howard men vs Harvard on Sunday at 2pm

Christmas Caroling
Where: The Wharf | Southwest DC
When: Saturday, 5-7pm
Admission: Free

Enjoy music from strolling Christmas carolers and a meet-and-greet with Santa and one of his elves! Plan on dinner while you’re there — you have your pick of places (Lupo Marino is our family’s fave).

AURORA: The Spirit of Northern Lights
Where: ARTECHOUSE | Southwest DC
When: Through January 5
Admission: $16-20/adult, $13-15/senior, $8-10/child

The winter exhibit at ARTECHOUSE celebrates the season with digital art installations and activations inspired by the aurora borealis. It consists of one large-scale and several smaller light art installations, all of them interactive and beautiful, the icy blue, purple, green, and occasionally soft yellow colors giving everything an ethereal feel. Guests can grow leafless winter trees, guide snowballs, and make snowflakes with their own movements detected by sensors. As Sasha aid, “It makes me feel like I have powers!” Get 20% off 2 adults + 2 children Sundays through Thursdays within bar hours (it includes hot chocolate).

Story Time
Where: Kramerbooks | Dupont Circle, DC
When: Sunday, 11am
Admission: Free

Take a break from your day and stop by Story Time at Kramers! Staff will feature a children’s book and host various fun activities for your little ones. They’ll watch your kids while you grab a coffee (or, if you have a cranky two-year-old, a mimosa) from the café. All ages welcome! (And FYI, this occurs every Sunday and Wednesday.)

National Menorah Lighting
Where: President’s Park | The National Ellipse, DC
When: Sunday, 4pm
Admission: Free, but you must request tickets

This is the Jewish counterpart to the National Christmas Tree Lighting. Every Chanukah, the National Menorah is lit in a ceremony on the Ellipse. Along with the lighting, there will be live entertainment, plus menorah kits and dreidels to take home. And if you don’t mind waiting in line afterward, you can stay for latkes and donuts. Tickets are free, but you need to order them in advance through the website.

Menorah Lighting
Where: Bethesda Row | Bethesda, MD
When: Sunday, 5pm
Admission: Free

Join Bethesda Row to celebrate the Jewish holiday of Chanukah with Chabad of Bethesda and light up the menorah on the first night of the Festival of Lights. Enjoy the annual menorah lighting, plus live music and entertainment, food and drink, giveaways, and fun for the whole family.

Chanukah on Ice
Where: Pentagon Row Ice Rink | Pentagon City, VA
When: Sunday, 6-8:30pm
Admission: $10-$13

Celebrate Chanukah with a giant menorah lighting, holiday treats, raffles, and ice skating! Ice skate rentals are included, but food will be sold separately — hot latkes, Kosher hot dogs, and refreshments will be available.

***MORE GOOD STUFF TO KNOW***
* Planning your Winter Break in DC? Be sure to check out this just posted KFDC Guide.
* If you’re looking for last minute holiday gifts, the KFDC Gift Guide has lots of suggestions for experiences around the area that you can buy with just a few clicks as well as some gift ideas that are totally free!
* And here’s one more. (I got it for my kids and know they’re going to dig it!)
* Heads up: Registration for free Family Workshops (for ages 8-11) at the National Gallery of Art will open January 3.
* Movie rec: Marriage Story on Netflix. It’s real and raw and so terrifically acted.
* And to balance things out, this holiday series, also on Netflix, is funny and sweet (and for adults).
* A really great “Best of 2019.”


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Filed under 2019, All ages, Annual, Chanukah, Christmas, DC, Exhibit, Fall, Free, Holidays, Indoor Play, Live Entertainment, Maryland, Museums, Seasonal, Special Event, Theatre, Virginia, Weekend, Winter

The Weekend Round-Up: December 12-15

The newest exhibit at ARTECHOUSE is one of many cool activities to enjoy this weekend


Happy Weekend!

Holiday Meetup
Where: The Yards | Capitol Riverfront, DC
When: Thursday, 6-8pm
Admission: Free

Join neighbors for an evening at Light Yards made especially for the Capitol Riverfront community! Stroll through the interactive light show, then pick up swag at the Capitol Riverfront BID tent before heading over to Ice Cream Jubilee for complimentary hot cocoa and Steadfast Supply for holiday cookies and a 10% discount on purchases.

Downtown Holiday Market
Where: 8th & F Streets NW | Penn Quarter, DC
When: Daily through December 23, 12-8pm
Admission: Free

I love this holiday market. It’s not even so much about the merchandise for sale (though there’s always a great variety of gift items — I never leave empty handed). There’s something about the usually bustling block in the middle of Penn Quarter transforming into an open air market for a few weeks that is so charming and kind of magical, making our big city feel like a small town. A bonus is the free live entertainment along with treats and coffee drinks available for purchase. Even better, after you’ve done your shopping and enjoyed a snack and music, you can pop into the National Portrait Gallery/American Art Museum that are literally the backdrop to the market.

Wreaths Across America
Where: Arlington National Cemetery | Arlington, VA
When: Saturday, opens 7am, wreath placing 9:15am
Admission: Free

This is a chance for the whole family to volunteer. Help place Veterans’ Remembrance Wreaths on the graves of American heroes buried at Arlington National Cemetery. There is no sign-up or age requirement — families are encouraged to volunteer together. Be sure to visit the website for details, including schedule and meeting location. Read about more family-friendly volunteer opportunities around the DC area.

EdFEST
Where: DC Armory| Capitol Hill, DC
When: Saturday, 11am – 3pm
Admission: Free

Explore the city’s many public school PK3-12 options for your child. Representatives from DC public schools (DCPS) and DC public charter schools will showcase their programs, just in time to help you make informed school selections for the 2019-20 school year common lottery. The event will also feature many free services and fun activities for the whole family, including games and entertainment; sports activities; story time; and flu shots, immunizations, and dental services.

Smithsonian Winter Family Festival
Where: Smithsonian Castle | National Mall, DC
When: Saturday, 10am – 2pm
Admission: Free

Kick off this holiday season with a special Family Day at the Smithsonian Castle, where there will be special holiday-themed activities for visitors of all ages including. Join a Holiday Story Time at 10:30am and 1pm. Create your own air plant seasonal ornaments. Customize a letter to Santa, or a holiday haiku with the help of poets from Ars Poetica. Take a pis at a special photo station with a holiday backdrop and props. Enjoy musical performances by Chord of Appeals A Cappella and the Capitol Hill Chorale, and take a Castle Tour at 11:30am and 1:30pm.

Holiday Movie Classics
Where: Miracle Theater | Capitol Hill, DC
When: Friday, Saturday, & Sunday
Admission:

Celebrate the season at the Miracle Theater as they show holiday classics all weekend. And on Saturday you can join the The Polar Express Pajama Party at 11am, when you can catch a screening of the film (in PJ’s), then enjoy a visit from Santa. Visit the website to see times and titles of the rest of the movies playing there.

Season’s Greenings
Where: U.S. Botanic Garden | National Mall area, DC
When: Throughout the weekend
Admission: Free

Easily one of DC’s most popular holiday attractions, Season’s Greenings is an annual delight for all ages. The conservatory exhibit features Washington landmarks constructed from plant materials, including a new botanical inspired National Museum of African American History & Culture. But the highlight, hands-down, is the garden railway, which never fails to impress and enchant with intricate, imaginative designs. This year’s America’s Gardens-themed exhibit features structures from botanical gardens across the US. Get a glimpse of it before you go in this KFDC post.

Enchant
Where: Nationals Park | Capitol Riverfront, DC
When: Through December 29
Admission: Varies by Date, time, and age

There’s been a lot of buzz about the new holiday attraction at Nationals Park — and I think it’s deserving. The world’s largest Christmas light maze and market is dazzling and delightful and really captures the spirit of the holidays. Purchase tickets here, and read a KFDC review of it, including tips for visiting, if you haven’t already.

Ice Maze
Where: CityCenterDC | Downtown DC
When: Friday, 4-9pm & Saturday/Sunday, 10am – 9pm
Admission: Free

Get lost in the a-MAZE-ing, magic of the holidays with CityCenterDC’s icy tradition. This year, CityCenterDC is building the largest clear ice maze in the United States built with 110,000 pounds of ice. Washingtonians will not want to escape the towering seven foot walls of this chilly challenge.

AURORA: The Spirit of Northern Lights
Where: ARTECHOUSE | Southwest DC
When: Through January 5
Admission: $16-20/adult, $13-15/senior, $8-10/child

The winter exhibit at ARTECHOUSE celebrates the season with digital art installations and activations inspired by the aurora borealis. It consists of one large-scale and several smaller light art installations, all of them interactive and beautiful, the icy blue, purple, green, and occasionally soft yellow colors giving everything an ethereal feel. Guests can grow leafless winter trees, guide snowballs, and make snowflakes with their own movements detected by sensors. As Sasha aid, “It makes me feel like I have powers!” Get 20% off 2 adults + 2 children Sundays through Thursdays within bar hours (it includes hot chocolate).

Young Learner Tour
Where: Museum of Women in the Arts | Downtown DC
When: Saturday, 10-11am
Admission: Free

Children ages 3 to 6 (and their adults) will get their little bodies moving, minds thinking, hands making, and mouths talking about works of art as they go on an adventure through the galleries and look closely at works in the collection. This “Spotting Shapes and Looking for Lines” themed session will incorporate a variety of fun, hands-on activities for children as they also learn about the museum and how to practice museum manners. FYI: Walk-ins are limited, but you can always stay to tour the museum if it’s full.

Open Studio: Wrap It Up: Holiday Gift Giving
Where: Freer|Sackler Gallery | National Mall, DC
When: Saturday & Sunday, 12-4
Admission: Free

While you make a furoshiki wrapping cloth, learn how this Japanese tradition can help save money and the environment. Also, enjoy a scavenger hunt to explore our new exhibition Hokusai: Mad about Painting. In the studio, make your own holiday decorations using cloth and woodblock materials. All ages are welcome with adult companions.

More Show Time
Where: Around the DMV
When: Throughout the weekend
Admission: Varies by show

* Shakespeare Theatre Company’s version of Peter Pan and Wendy is a magical experience (find discounts)
* See The Snow Queen at Synetic Theatre (find discounts)
* Take littles to see Art on the Horizon’s Squeakers and Mr. Gumdrop
* Don’t Let the Pigeon Drive the Bus! (The Musical) is at the Kennedy Center (review here, look for tickets here)
* Take the fam to a performance of Singin’ in the Rain at Olney Theatre (find discounts)
* Let Newsies entertain you at Arena Stage (find discounts)
* Take t(w)eens and older to see Fiddler on the Roof at National Theatre
* Make it a date night for Dear Jack Dear Louise at Arena Stage (find discounts)

Holidays on the Stage
Where: Around the DMV
When: Through the holiday season
Tickets: Vary by show

If you’re looking for holiday-inspired entertainment to get into the spirit of the season, there’s plenty of it! Stomp along at Step Afrika’s Magical, Musical Holiday Step Show at the Atlas. There are several versions of The Nutcracker, including one on strings. storybook classics like The Velveteen Rabbit at Adventure Theatre and The Lion, the Witch, and the Wardrobe at Imagination Stage. Catch An Irish Carol opening this weekend at Keegan Theatre, and enjoy a Candlelight Christmas at the Kennedy Center. Get details on these shows and many, many more in the 2019 Guide to the Holiday Season.

Winter Open House
Where: Excel Prep Preschool Academy | Alexandria, VA
When: Saturday, 10am – 1pm
Admission: Free

Excel Preparatory Preschool Academy, a new STEAM preschool that just opened in Alexandria, is hosting an Open House on Saturday. Along with guided tours of the school, there will be Tunes 4 Tots music sessions, speech screenings, Harambee with Baba Ras D, photos, and more.

Shop the Square Holiday Market
Where: District Square at The Wharf | Southwest DC
When:Saturday & Sunday, 12pm – 6pm
Admission: Free

Sip, shop, and get ready for the holidays. For two days, District Square at is being transformed into a holiday wonderland complete with live music, a hot drinks bar, and a great selection of gifts and goods from the merchants in the square. Admission is free and all are welcome. There will also be special hands-on classes like gingerbread decorating, jewelry making, and a terrarium workshop — details and registration here

A Charlie Brown Christmas
Where: Episcopal Church of the Redeemer | Bethesda, MD
When: Saturday, 3:30-5pm
Admission: $25/adult, free for kids

Enjoy the classic Snoopy movie on the big screen with movie food – followed by the Eric Byrd Trio’s own take on the music from the show in a live jazz set. Suitable for all ages. Kids go free.

Winter’s Eve
Where: Glen Echo Park | Glen Echo, MD
When: Saturday, 4-7pm
Admission: Free

Celebrate the holiday season at the Park’s annual Winter’s Eve event. Enjoy free activities including holiday crafts, sing-alongs, story-telling, open studios, and a hot chocolate bar. Browse and buy fine artworks at the Holiday Art Show and artist studios.

Christmas is Afoot
Where: Christ Crossman | Falls Church, VA
When: Saturday, 4-7pm
Admission: Free

This Christmas season take a walk through historic Bethlehem! On Saturday, December 14 from 4:00-7:00 PM, Christ Crossman United Methodist Church (384 N Washington St, Falls Church) will open its doors to the community. Christmas is Afoot is a family friendly event with a petting zoo and live nativity. Inside, children will enjoy craft stations and can participate in a service project assembling Power Packs for students in need through Food for Others. Live Christmas music and carols from members of the George Mason High School band, warm cider and hot chocolate. This event is free and open to all!

More Holiday Happenings
Where: Around the DMV
When: Throughout the weekend
Admission: Varies by locale

Get into the holiday spirit in all kinds of ways at every price point. Enjoy Christmas at Mount Vernon with fireworks and more. Go see the National Christmas Tree and holiday display on the Ellipse. Join the Russian Winter Festival at Hillwood. Enjoy the free WinterFest in Occoquan. Take a street car ride with Santa at the Holly Trolley Fest. Find details on all of these events and more are in the 2019 Holiday Season Guide.

Open Studio & Ceramics Sale
Where: Hollow Works Studio | H Street NE, DC
When: Sunday, 11am – 3pm
Admission: Free

Shop for one-of-a-kind ceramics in the artist’s studio! Kate Hardy of Hollow Works Ceramics creates and sells beautiful, unique work — bowls, mugs, vases, and more — that would make perfect holiday presents. In addition to showcasing a lot of new work, she’ll be clearing her studio of a year’s worth of seconds. Seconds are pieces with minor flaws, like glaze imperfections or warping. Seconds are also leftovers from commissions or experiments that just don’t fit in with the rest of her work that she sells for heavily discounted prices. There will be some serious deals to be had. The studio is located in the alley right off of 7th and H Streets NE (803 7th St NE). Rain or shine, and kids are welcome!

Jumanjii Virtual Experience
Where: The Void | Tysons Corner, VA
When: Throughout the weekend
Admission: $34.95/age 10+

The immersive virtual reality experience “Jumanji: Reverse the Curse gives” fans the ability to truly enter another game, taking on the form of its heroes, Dr. Bravestone, Ruby Roundhouse, Professor Oberon and “Mouse” Finbar, to save Jumanji from a new dark and mysterious villain. Fans will be enlisted on a daring quest to rescue the Scepter of Se’payu containing the Red Jewel of Jumanji and return it to the temple from which it was stolen. Pulled into the perils of Jumanji, players face challenges just like those that the avatars face in the movie – evading man-eating wildlife, navigating across treacherous landscape, battling evil henchmen – to survive and return to real life. Watch the trailer and reserve tickets here.

Chalkboard Menorah Workshop
Where: Homedepot
When: Sunday, 1-2pm
Admission: Free

Get into the Chanukah spirit! Join us at the Home Depot for an exciting workshop — make your very own Chalkboard Menorah! You can also play Dreidel and eat some Chanukah gelt. Free and fun for the whole family. Register in advance here.

Men’s World Squash Team Championship
Where: Squash on Fire | Downtown DC
When: Sunday (through December 21)
Admission: Tickets start at $25

The most renowned men’s squash tournament in the world is coming to U.S. December 15-21, for the first time ever in its 50 year history! This event attracts the top talent from around the world to compete on an international stage. All eyes will be on the nation’s capital when 23 countries from nearly every continent descend upon its host facility, Squash On Fire, the first state-of-the art squash facility in Washington, DC, to compete for the ultimate title. This includes Team USA, who will compete in the championship on their home turf for the first time ever. All are welcome to spectate — this is a great opportunity for kids to be exposed to a fun new sport on the highest level.

Night Lights
Where: Around the DMV
When: Friday, Saturday, & Sunday Evenings
Admission: Varies by locale

Twinkling lights forming enchanting displays are easily a holiday season favorite. Visit one of several parks (or the National Zoo, Mormon Temple, or Georgetown) in the area that has transformed into a sparkling wonderland. Some you can walk through for an up-close experience, others you tour by car. Either way, expect to be dazzled.

Kwanzaa Celebration – Family Series
Where: Dorothy Betts Marvin Theatre | Foggy Bottom DC
When: Sunday, 3pm
Tickets: $15-30, kids free with adult

Welcome the holiday season with Dance Place’s annual Kwanzaa Celebration! Gather family and friends to join Coyaba Academy, Coyaba Dance Theater and special guests celebrate the seven principles of Kwanzaa. Note: This takes place on Saturday, too, but during the Family Series on Sunday, you can get 1 free ticket for a child 12 & under with paying adult!

DC, Inside & Out

Where: Around the DMV
When: Throughout the weekend

Admission: Varies by adventure


There’s both rain and sunshine in this weekend’s forecast, plus more options for fun things to do with the kids are never a bad thing. If you’re looking for activities outdoors or inside, depending on the weather or simply your preference, these posts are chock full of evergreen pursuits:

The Great Indoors
The Best Places in the DC Area to Enjoy a Beautiful Day Outdoors with the Kids


***MORE GOOD STUFF***
* There’s a new round-up of live entertainment on local stages this winter — see what’s coming, and reserve your seats. And, remember, these could make for fantastic holiday gifts!
* There are two KFDC Facebook giveaways running through Friday: Enter to win tickets to The Washington Chorus’ Candlelight Christmas family show and walk-thru admission for 4 to Merriweather’s Symphony of Lights.
* We’ve seen a couple of good PG13 movies recently: Ford v Ferrari is interesting and inspirational. Knives Out is a super fun and quirky murder mystery.
* Both of my kids are getting this super cool, very practical, and fairly inexpensive holiday gift.
* Any guesses why I love this artwork so much?
* Go, Greta and USWNT and Lizzo!
* The year in photos.
* For something feel-good, watch this. Ellen is the absolute best.


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Filed under 2019, All ages, Annual, Chanukah, Christmas, DC, Fall, Holidays, Maryland, Seasonal, Special Event, Virginia, Weekend, Winter