The Lion King @ The Drive-In
Where: Union Market | Northeast DC
When: Friday, 8pm (lot opens at 6pm)
Admission: $10/car, free for walk-ups
Catch a family-friendly flick at the drive-in! The Lion King is this month’s featured film at Union Market’s outdoor movie series. See the story of Simba and his family on the big screen from the comfort of your car in the UM parking lot. Get there as early as 6pm and have a bite to eat in the Market or bring food back to your car. The lot closes at 7:30pm, and the film begins at 8pm. Advance purchase is recommended.
Family Fun Fair
Where: The Cathay School | Rockville, MD
When: Saturday, 10am – 2pm
The Cathay School in coordination with Activity Rocket & Thrively welcome everyone Back-To-School with a FREE Family Fun Fair at The Cathay School, a brand new, state-of-the-art educational center. Sample classes for kids as countless businesses will be there to provide gymnastics, art, music, STEM, drama, entertainment, snacks, and more family fun activities appropriate for children ages 2 to 12 years old. Giveaways also included! RSVP here to let them know you’re going!
Where: Peirce Mill | Rock Creek Park
When: Saturday, 11am – 2pm
2401 Tilden Street NW, Washington, DC
This event will feature special hands-on tours of the historic mill for children at 11am and 12:30pm. Kids can also make there own cornhusk dolls and other old-fashioned toys, and play traditional games on the lawn. This event is designed for ages 3 and up, but all are welcome and no registration is required. Read a KFDC write-up about Peirce Mill.
Sing, Talk, & Read Family Festival
Where: Deanwood Library | Northeast DC
When: Saturday, 11am – 3pm
Join DC Public Library in partnership with the DC Dept. of Parks and Recreation for this
early literacy festival. Singing, talking, and reading are essential to ensuring that children have the strong foundation needed to learn how to read. Along with great resources, free food, prizes and giveaways, and amazing performances will be part fo the fun. Take a musical journey around the Americas with Latin Grammy-winning 123 Andrés. See Coyaba Dance Theater perform song and dance as they explore the diverse sounds and movements of the different parts of Africa. Meet a DC United player, too!
Art Museum Morning
Where: Hirshhorn Museum | National Mall, DC
When: Saturday, 10am – 12pm & Sunday, 11am
Fun for little ones at the Hirshhorn! Enjoy the Library + Art Pop-Up and find a cart in the galleries and check out a fun kit full of favorite finds for kids. On Sunday, enjoy their Storytime program: Imagine and re-enact the journey of a little clam as you look at the sculpture Clamdigger by Willem de Kooning and read the book Necks Out for Adventure. Following the reading, create your own visual stories with the help of museum staff.
The Great Indoors
Where: Around the DMV
When: Throughout the weekend
Admission: Varies by Activity
The current forecast shows a lot of rainy weather this weekend, so this go-to post listing 100 suggestions for things to do inside — just about all of them tried and tested by yours truly and co. — will be a good one to keep in your back pocket. And if you’re looking specifically for places where kids can burn energy and be active, check out this round-up of Indoor Playgrounds.
Teddy Bear Clinic
Where: National Museum of Health & Medicine | Silver Spring, MD
When: Saturday, 10am – 12pm
Bring your favorite stuffed friend and explore the Teddy Bear Clinic with activities and crafts designed to highlight the body, physical fitness, and healthy habits. This program is recommended for children in PreK-2nd grade.
Virginia Indian Festival
Where: Riverbend Park | Great Falls, VA
When: Saturday, 10am – 4pm
Eight American Indian tribes from Virginia, including the Rappahannock dancers and drummers, will convene for this annual festival at the park along the Potomac River. Enjoy hands on activities and live demonstrations including American Indian storytelling, shooting bow and arrows, throwing spears and making stone tools. Also, assist in building a dugout canoe and visit our marketplace of American Indian crafts, pottery and jewelry. Read more about Riverbend Park here.
Where: Meadowside Nature Center | Rockville, MD
When: Saturday, 12-4pm
Get your paws on this delightful native fruit and celebrate it with Meadowside Nature Center. They’ll have music, crafts, games, face painting, and advice on growing pawpaws. You can also get a taste of the fruit and purchase pawpaw trees, so you can grow your own at home.
Rosslyn Jazz Fest
Where: Gateway Park | Rosslyn, VA
When: Saturday, 1-7pm
Head across the Key Bridge from the city for this free annual music festival. In its 28th season, the event regularly draws over 5,000 music fans to Gateway Park for world-class music along with family-friendly activities, local food trucks, and a beer and wine garden. See the website for the line-up of bands and details on parking.
Prince George’s County Fair
Where: Show Place Arena | Upper Marlboro, MD
When: Through Sunday
Admission: $6/ages 13+, $5/age 6-11, free/5 & under
The county fair season continues! Enjoy a variety of entertainment and attractions for all ages at PG County’s annual event — 4-H exhibits, magic and dance shows, pig and duck races, a horse pull competition, a chain saw artist, a K-9 show, and much more carnival-style fun.
Where: 800 block of Upshur Street NW | Petworth, DC
When: Saturday, 11-5pm
Organized by and for the residents of Petworth and surrounding neighborhoods, Celebrate Petworth is a free community festival celebrating the creativity, diversity, culture, people, and quality of life in the wonderful neighborhood.
Where: Revel Grove | Crownsville, MD
When: Saturday & Sunday, 10am – 7pm
Admission: $19/age 16+, $8/age 7-15, free/6 & under
Enjoy the bounty of merriment at the Maryland Renaissance Festival. The annual faire recalls medieval times with a village full of fun and entertainment for the whole family. This is one of my very favorite events in the DC area, and it could very well become one of yours, too. Read more about Ren Fest here. (PS: Admission prices go up after this weekend.)
Where: Around the DMV
When: Throughout the weekend
Admission: Varies by locale
The calendar may not say fall yet, but that’s not stopping the seasonal celebrations. Go on hayrides, get lost in corn mazes, pick some pumpkins and apples, whoosh down slides, and so much more. This recent post has a list of all the festivals happening around the area where you can get a head start on fall this weekend or plan your autumn amusement for later.
Where: City Market at O | Shaw, DC
When: Saturday, 12-8pm & Sunday, 12-7pm
Admission: $25-30/adult, $20-25/under 12, free/under2
I scream, you scream, we all scream for… gelato! The second annual Gelato Festival aims to spread awareness of real Italian artisanal gelato through a contest in which gelato artisans and chefs will compete with original gelato flavors they have created just for this event. And the public is invited to savor them all! All-access tickets let you enjoy a scoop of each of the unique flavors created by the competing gelato chefs, the sponsored flavors, and flavors from Carpigiani’s Gelato University. Ticket holders will also be able to vote for their favorite flavor, helping to decide the winner for their city, with their votes comprising 50% of the decision; the rest is in the hands of the technical jury.
Where: Georgetown U Hotel & Conference Center | Georgetown, DC
When: Saturday & Sunday
Admission: Starts at $15
If you’re serious about board games, this tabletop gaming convention is an event you don’t want to miss. There will be opportunities to demo new games, enter tourneys to test your gaming skills against some of the best players, meet people who make and sell games, and much more.
All Aboard for Kensington
Where: Kensington Town Hall | Kensington, MD
When: Saturday & Sunday, 11am – 5pm
Admission: $7/adult, $2/child, $15/max per family
Join local club, The National Capital Trackers, as they run “O” gauge electric trains on multiple layouts, with flourishes such as train whistles, steam, depots and bridges giving visitors lots to marvel at. All Aboard for Kensington will also feature live music, stories, and activities for kids.
Where: William Ramsay Recreation Center | Alexandria, VA
When: Saturday, 12-5pm
The City of Alexandria’s Office of the Arts will transform the William Ramsay Recreation Center for a free celebration of Africa through dance, music, food, crafts, and culture. Traditional African attire is encouraged!
Commit to Be Fit
Where: Rhode Island Row
When: Saturday, 12-4pm
Join friends and neighbors and commit to being the healthiest you at Rhode Island Row on Saturday. The Commit to Be Fit event will feature free fitness classes, health screenings, healthy food offerings, kids activities, giveaways, and more! The free event is in partnership with WPGC 95.5 Radio.
BlackRock Open House
Where: BlackRock Center for the Arts | Gaithersburg, MD
When: Saturday, 11am – 2pm
Join BlackRock for their annual Open House and discover where AWESOME meets EASY. BlackRock opens its doors for three hours only, but during that time you can win great prizes, play with artists in our galleries, preview the upcoming film series, see showcases of upcoming attractions, sample workshops of award-winning classes, plus get in on a 3-Hour Sale!
Savor the Bay
Where: Sandy Point State Park | Annapolis, MD
When: Saturday & Sunday
Admission: $10, free for ages 12 and under
How about a day filled with delicious seafood, live entertainment, kids activities, food demos and competitions, loads of shopping options, vendors, exhibits, contests? You can enjoy all that and more at the 51st annual Maryland Seafood Festival. Even better, it all takes place on the beautiful shores of the Chesapeake Bay.
National Folk Festival
Where: Downtown Salisbury, MD
When: Friday, 6-10:30pm | Saturday, 12-10:30pm | Sunday, 12-6:30pm
Take a day trip to make it an overnight to Salisbury, MD, for the National Folk Festival, a celebration of traditional music, dance, craft, and food that captures the heart of the American experience. Festivities include a dance pavilion, crafters, regional and ethnic foods, a juried marketplace, and seven amazing stages featuring more than 350 artists on the banks of the Wicomico River. The free, family-friendly event runs all weekend with a special area reserved for the Maryland Traditions state folklife program to present living cultural traditions from Maryland.
Adams Morgan Day
Where: Along 18th St & Columbia Ave NW | Adams Morgan, DC
When: Sunday, 12-6pm
Celebrate one of the city’s most diverse communities at the 40th Annual Adams Morgan Day, offering a day full of music, art, culture, dancing, and more. The family-friendly celebration will have activities for all ages, including free crafts for kids and adults, bike demos, live entertainment, and tons more. More details and the schedule of performances are available on the website.
Rainbow Families Picnic
Where: Hillwood Estate | Upper Northwest, DC
When: Sunday, 11am – 2pm
Admission: $5-$18, free/under 18
Connect with LGBT families and enjoy Hillwood’s urban oasis at this family celebration. Pack a picnic or purchase food from the café’s express menu, play lawn games, get faces painted, try on costumes, make a craft, explore the exhibitions, and more!
***MORE GOOD STUF TO KNOW***
* Surely, you’ve seen the ad, but have you watched the commercial yet? Amazing.
* The new Fall 2018 Activity Board created in partnership with Thrively and Activity Rocket features all kinds of classes for kids around the area!
* ARTECHOUSE is offering a special Family Package for Fractal Worlds, which gets you a free child’s admission with the purchase of an adult ticket. This deal runs September 6-9, though you can reserve any date through September.
* You can register now to join the International Coastal Clean-Up that will take place locally at Kingman Island next Saturday.
* Groupon is running a Best of September Sale September 7-8, with up to 80% off activities and services all around the DC area!
* Liven up your fall! This new post has the line-up of family entertainment coming to the DC area over the next few months.
* This video that I learned about here is so creative and beautiful.