Tag Archives: DC Outdoor Activities

Where to Play on the Weekdays: August 11-15

A couple of cherubs at Dumbarton Oaks

A couple of cherubs at Dumbarton Oaks



Monday – Head on down to the county fair. Both the Montgomery and Prince William County Fairs are going on right now, with everything from carnival rides to farm animals to live entertainment. And it’s Family Day at Montgomery, when admission is free for ages 11 and under. This post has more details on both of them, and this one has photos from our visit to MoCo last year.

Tuesday – Go for a swim! There are plenty of places in the area where you can jump in for free or a very small fee. This post has quick links to DC aquatic facilities, and you can find info for Maryland and Virginia public pools in the Summer 2014 guide. Be sure to check schedules for open swim times at all of them.

Wednesday – Roam the exquisite gardens at Dumbarton Oaks in Georgetown. The grounds don’t open to the public until 2pm (closing at 6pm), but you can play at nearby Montrose Park or grab a bite to eat on M Street beforehand. I promise, it’s worth waiting for the afternoon visit. Admission to Dumbarton is $8/adults, $5/children, and there’s never an entry fee at Montrose.

Thursday – Take a trip to your local library. Drop in for storytime with little ones or let older children check out books and do some browsing. See this post from the early KFDC days for a little background and easy links to libraries around the area.

Friday – Rock out with one of the area’s most popular bands with the kiddie set. Rocknocerous is playing the 10:30am show at Jammin’ Java. General admission tickets are $5. Doors open at 10am. Full lunch and drink menu available!


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Filed under All ages, Annual, DC, Educational, Free, Live Entertainment, Maryland, Music, Nature, Outdoor, Park, Seasonal, Summer, Virginia, Weekdays

Where to Play on the Weekdays: August 4-8

Greeting the trees (per scavenger hunt instructions) at Green Spring Gardens

Greeting the trees (per scavenger hunt instructions) at Green Spring Gardens



Monday – Pick some produce at a local farm. Peaches, blueberries, and blackberries are among the fruits that are available now, and just about all the farms in this post about strawberry picking have something ripe and ready for harvest. However, it’s always a good idea to check websites or call ahead to confirm availability the day you plan to go. Sunscreen and hat also recommended.

Tuesday – Enjoy Showtime Tuesday, THEARC theatre’s free weekly movie series. Oz The Great & Powerful is this week’s screening. Doors open at 9:30am. Pre-show activity happens at 10:15am, and the film begins promptly at 10:30am.

Wednesday – Go ape at the National Zoo! Gorillas, Orangutans and Gibbons will be the focus of this “Featured Creature” day. Enjoy keeper talks, animal demos, and fun activities for the whole family. Learn about ape family dynamics, Zoo animal care, and the fascinating cognitive studies being undertaken by National Zoo. The program takes place 10am – 2pm. Admission is free.

Thursday – Visit Green Spring Gardens in Alexandria to tour the delightful grounds. Be sure to stop in the Horticultural Center and pick up instructions for a kids’ scavenger hunt to add some extra fun to the outing. Hours are 9am – 4:30pm. Admission is free.

Friday – Catch a performance of Little Red Riding Hood & the 3 little Pigs at The Puppet Co. Showtimes are 10am and 11:30am (Thursday, too!). Tickets are $10.


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Filed under All ages, Animals, DC, Educational, Free, Maryland, Movies, Nature, Outdoor, Park, Seasonal, Summer, Theatre, Virginia, Weekdays

Where to Play on the Weekdays: July 28 – August 1

Hangin at the U.S. Botanic Garden then...

Hangin at the U.S. Botanic Garden then…

...and now

…and now



Monday – Celebrate Peruvian Independence Day at the National Geographic Museum, where they are offering buy-one-get-one-free admission this Monday & Tuesday to visitors wearing the colors of Peru’s flag (it contains red, white, yellow, green, and blue). See the Peruvian Gold exhibit and A New Age of Exploration along with plenty of Nat Geo’s signature mesmerizing photography on display. Hours are 10am – 6pm. Admission is $11/adult, $7/ages 5-12 (but remember you get one free with each paid visitor).

Tuesday – Glimpse the past on the Potomac at Fort Washington Park. Kids will love seeing the cannons and other historic sights there. Grounds are open are 8am – sunset, buildings 9am – 4pm. Admission is $5/vehicle.

Wednesday – Spend what is supposed to be a gorgeous day outdoors at Great Country Farms in Bluemont, Va. Pick your own peaches, plums, and blackberries, all ripe and ready to be harvested now. Stay to play among the acres of fun attractions, including a jumping pillow, slides, petting zoo, mazes, wagon rides, and more! Hours are 9am – 6pm (9am – 5pm in U-pick fields). Admission is $10/adult, $8/child.

Thursday – Devise a plan to visit the International Spy Museum, where you and the kids can go undercover to explore the intriguing world of espionage. Hours are 9am – 7pm. Regular admission is $21.95/adult, $14.95/ages 7-11, free for 6 and under, but you can find a big discount on tickets here.

Friday – Visit the U.S. Botanic Garden — one of our very favorite places in the city — where there’s plenty to enjoy both outdoors and in. Little ones kids can flex their green thumbs in the outdoor Children’s Garden: They can play in a miniature house, dig in the dirt, and pump water. Tour the plant collections, and be sure to stop in the “Plants in Culture” exhibit where you can sniff the aromas of various plants and learn about their everyday uses. Outside in the National Garden, stroll among the roses and other plants, run through the grass, sit in the small amphitheater, and relax by the fountain. Pack lunch to eat at one of several tables there. Read more about the USBG here and here.

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Filed under All ages, DC, Educational, Exhibit, Farm, Free, Maryland, Museums, Nature, Outdoor, Park, Summer, Virginia, Weekdays

Where to Play on the Weekdays: July 21-25

Babes in the woods: On the trail at Riverbend Park

Babes in the woods: On the trail at Riverbend Park



Monday – Make your way to — and through — The Big Maze at the National Building Museum. The new installation, which opened on July 4 and will be there until September 1, is a must-do. The cost is is a bit steep ($16/adult, $12/child for non-members, reduced for members), but when you consider all of the wonderful, free attractions we enjoy here in DC, paying to see/do something unique and fun is worth it. Plus, admission gets you into ALL of the exhibits at the museum, so you can make a day of it at the kids hang-out fave.

Tuesday – Join Pinstripes‘ new chef, Ryan Ross, as he hosts a free “Kids in the Garden” day, in which children of all ages are invited to the bowling, bocce, and bistro venue to dig in the dirt while learning about gardening, plants and seeds. From 10-11am, Ross will do a demonstration in Pinstripes’ outdoor Chef’s Garden on the process of planting to growing to eating, then the children will have an opportunity to plant their own seed to take home. Children are welcome to stay for Pinstripes’ Mom & Tots program, a Monday-Friday ongoing program where kids bowl for $5 and parents bowl for FREE 10am-noon. Call 202-625-6500 to make reservations for “Kids in the Garden” Day.

Wednesday – Make it a beach day at Sandy Point State Park. Located off Route 50 right before the Chesapeake Bay Bridge, the park is great place to get a beach fix relatively close to the city. Swim in the water, play in the sand, and bring along a picnic lunch. Open 6am – sunset, and lifeguards man a portion of South Beach from 10am – 6pm on weekdays. Admission is $4/Maryland resident, $6/non-residents.

Thursday – Enjoy songs about the important things in life: pizza parties, snow days, and summer vacations as Brooklyn-based Tim and the Space Cadets perform at Strathmore’s Backyard Theatre for Children. Showtimes are9:30am and 11:30am. Tickets are $8 for ages 3 and up.

Friday – Hit the trail at Riverbend Park. Make that your starting point on a 2-mile hike to Great Falls, where you can take in magnificent vistas, visit the nature center, and have a picnic. Or just wander around Riverbend and enjoy the Visitor Center and views there. Park hours are 7am to dusk, Visitor Center 9am – 5pm. Admission is free.


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Filed under All ages, DC, Eats, Educational, Exhibit, Free, Live Entertainment, Maryland, Museums, Nature, Outdoor, Park, Seasonal, Summer, Virginia, Weekdays