Tag Archives: Winter in DC

February is Black History Month: Here’s Where to Celebrate it with Kids Around DC

Barack Obama will be a subject of Portrait Story Days this month at the National Portrait Gallery

February is Black History Month, and there are so many great events and activities throughout the DC area to celebrate it. Museum programs (including an entire museum), special events, tours and exhibits, live entertainment, story time sessions, and more will be enlightening and fun for all ages. Here’s where many are happening over the next few weeks.

Tour the NMAAHC
Where: National Museum of African American History & Culture
When: Ongoing
Admission: Free

This museum is the best place to learn about black history and culture in America. September through February, which is off-peak season, you can get in on weekdays without tickets, but timed entry passes are still required for weekend admission. They are available online on Saturdays and Sundays starting at 6:30am until they run out. Be sure to read the KFDC Guide to Visiting the National Museum of African American History & Culture with Kids before you go.

Portrait Story Days
Where: National Portrait Gallery | Penn Quarter, DC
When: Most Saturdays & Sundays, 1-4pm
Admission: Free

Drop in to the Portrait Gallery to listen to a story from friends at the DC Public Library about a notable person featured in the collection and complete a hands-on art project. All through February, the program highlights black Americans in honor of Black History Month — this year, Rosa Parks, Barack Obama, Frederick Douglass, and Michelle Obama will be in the spotlight. Read more about the program and museum here.

Museum & Memorial Tour
Where: African American Civil War Museum | Shaw, DC
When: Ongoing
Admission: Free

Take a tour of another museum dedicated to the contributions of the 209,145 members of the United States Colored Troops. The African American Civil War Museum tells the stories and preserves for posterity the historic roles these brave men of African, European, and Hispanic descent played in ending slavery and keeping America united under one flag. A rich collection of artifacts, documents, primary sources, and technology create a meaningful learning experience for families, students, Civil War enthusiasts and historians about the period from the American Civil War to Civil Rights and beyond. Be sure to stop by the nearby African American Civil War Memorial, too.

Library Programs
Where: Public Libraries throughout DC
When: Throughout February
Admission: Free

The DC Public Library proudly celebrates Black History Month during February with all kinds of programs — author talks, lectures, arts & crafts, and story times. Visit the website to see what activities are going on at a location near you.

Jim Crow on Streetcars
Where: National Trolley Museum | Colesville, MD
When: Through February, Saturdays & Sundays, 12-5pm
Admission: $10/adult, $8/child

In recognition of Black History Month, the Museum presents this temporary exhibit. Learn about the nature of segregation aboard the cars in 19th century New York, the efforts to black the practice as it developed across the South, and the eventual success in opening employment opportunities.

Frederick Douglass House Tour
Where: Frederick Douglass Historic Site | Anascostia, DC
When: Ongoing
Admission: $1

Learn about the life of Frederick Douglass on a guided tour is his historic house — it’s the only way to see the inside. Rangers guide interpretive tours of the house every day at the scheduled times (listed on the website). Tours cover the first and second floors and last about 30 minutes.

Lunch and Learn: Black History Month
Where: Sully Historic Site | Fairfax, VA
When: February 5, 12-1pm
Admission: $5

When Carter G. Woodson established Negro History Week in 1926, he wanted schools and other organizations to study black history. The week of recognition has since grown to Black History Month. In honor of this month, learn about the enslaved people who made Sully their home during the 18th century. The program includes a visual presentation and hands-on elements. Bring your lunch and your questions, as discussion is welcome. For ages 12+.

African American Pioneers in Aviation and Space
Where: Steven F. Udvar-Hazy Center | Chantilly, VA
When: February 8, 10am – 3pm
Admission: Free, but parking is $15

Join the Air & Space museum as they celebrate African American History Month by revealing past pioneers and giving families the opportunity to inspire the next generation of innovators in aviation and space. African Americans have made, and continue to make, significant contributions to flight and space exploration despite the overwhelming obstacles they had to overcome. Enjoy guest speakers as they share their personal tales of triumph, participate in hands-on activities that will challenge families to be pioneers in space and aviation, and hear inspiring stories of African Americans who have overcome challenges and refused to be hidden figures.

The “Lives Bound Together” exhibit focuses on slavery at the Mount Vernon estate

The Slave Memorial & Exhibits
Where: Mount Vernon Estate | Mount Vernon, VA
When: Ongoing
Admission: $20/adult, $12/ages 6-11, free/5 & under

Make a point to see these on a visit to George Washington’s estate. The memorial is located approximately 50 yards southwest of George and Martha Washington’s tomb, on a bluff above the Potomac River. A gray, truncated, granite column which represents “life unfinished” is the center of three concentric brick circles. The three steps leading up to the column are inscribed, respectively, “Faith,” “Hope” and “Love” — the virtues that sustained those living in bondage. The exhibit Lives Bound Together explores the personal stories of the people enslaved at Mount Vernon while providing insight into George Washington’s evolving opposition to slavery. (Note: The mansion at Mount Vernon will not be open to visitors through February 9, and tickets are 25% off during that time. The rest of the exhibits and grounds are still open!)

Show What You Know: African American Inventors
Where: Port Discovery | Baltimore, MD
When: Select dates in February
Admission: $17.95

Head to the children’s museum in Baltimore for all kinds of kid play, including this fun game being offered during February: Test your knowledge in this museum floor game show. Match and learn about famous inventions from African American men and women throughout history. Play with others for the chance to win multiple prizes! Read more about Port Discovery in this recent post.

African Fabric Workshop
Where: Museum of Industry | Baltimore, MD
When: February 8, 10-11:30am
Admission: $10/adult, $5/child

Celebrate Black History Month with an intergenerational workshop on the meaning behind African printed fabrics led by Baltimore-based designer Akos “Sunday” Regal. Register in advance! The fee includes museum admission for the day (open 10am – 4pm), the 90 minute workshop, and a fabric swatch to take home. Read more about the Baltimore Museum of Industry in this KFDC post.

Into the Great Unknown: African American Adventurers and Explorers
Where: Discovery Theater | National Mall, DC
When: February 11-13
Tickets: $3-8

Leadership, courage, and adventure take center stage in this inspiring Discovery Theater original. From Matthew Henson, co-discoverer of the North Pole, to astronaut Mae Jemison, meet a century’s worth of bold men and women who challenged the Western frontier, the highest of mountains, and the vastness of outer space—and triumphed. In the histories and heroism of these explorers and adventurers, young audiences find models to help them reach their own highest goals.

The Snowy Day & Other Stories by Ezra Jack Keats
Where: Adventure Theatre | Glen Echo, MD
When: February 14 – April 5
Tickets: $23 (find discount)

Ezra Jack Keats’ was a pioneer in children’s literature as his stories were the first to break racial barriers, and his stories are perfectly timed to come to life on stage at Adventure Theatre starting this month. This beautiful show follows the character of Peter and his friend Archie around the neighborhood in four of Keats’ beloved tales, The Snowy Day, Whistle for Willie, Goggles!, and A Letter to Amy. Renowned for his tender personality, the character of Peter faces relatable everyday challenges to which children of all ages will find delightfully entertaining.

Black History Month Family Day
Where: Woodlawn Manor | Sandy Spring, MD
When: February 8
Admission: $5-7

Bring the entire family out to celebrate African American Culture. TThe event will feature presentations and hands-on activities for children, taking place inside Woodlawn Manor. Limited tickets sold day of program at the Visitor Center, so sign up in advance.

Young Portrait Explorers: Martin Luther King Jr.
Where: National Portrait Gallery | Penn Quarter, DC
When: February 24, 10:30-11:30am
Admission: Free

Join the National Portrait Gallery to learn about Barack Obama in a program that touches on art and history through storytelling. For toddlers up to age 5 and their adult companions. Registration is required. Class size is limited — register in advance! Parents and guardians must remain with their children.

Frederick Douglass Annual Birthday Commemoration
Where: Various locations | Anacostia, DC
When: February 15
Admission: Free

Join the National Park Service as they celebrate the 202nd anniversary of the birth of Frederick Douglass as well as the Centennial of the 19th Amendment to the United States Constitution. Following the Opening Ceremony at Anacostia High School Auditorium (1601 16th Street SE), there will be special themed house tours at Cedar Hill and an art program in the visitor center. There will also be programming at the Anacostia Arts Center and Anacostia High School that will include guest lectures, an exhibit by the DC League of Women Voters, and performances in the lobby.

National Philharmonic Black Classical Music Pioneers
Where: Strathmore | Bethesda, MD
When: February 22
Admission: $89/adult, free/age 7-17

This concert highlights the works of African American pioneers of classical music… Wild Strumming of Fiddle, by Wynton Marsalis (born 1961), comes from a remarkable 12-movement work that fuses jazz and symphonic music to create a dizzying array of sounds, rhythms and melodies. The Violin Concerto No. 1 (1939) by Florence Price (1887-1953) is a highly accomplished work in the models of the European classical concerto, by the first African-American woman to be widely recognized as a symphonic composer. The Lyric for Strings (1946) by George Walker (1922-2018), the first African-American composer to win the Pulitzer Prize for Music, is a work of intimate beauty. The Symphony No. 1 (1930) by William Grant Still (1895-1978) is the first symphony written by an African-American composer. Its subtitle (“Afro-American”) points to the unique style of the work, which includes elements of blues and jazz. Recommended for ages 7+.

Going the Distance
Where: Discovery Theater | National Mall, DC
When: February 20-28
Tickets: $3-8

Race to the finish line at Discovery Theater with two black Olympians who changed history! Soaring music and the exhilaration of world-class sorts motivate us to greatness in this vivid portrayal of the lives of Jesse Owens and Wilma Rudolph. Join them as they them overcome childhood illness, infirmity, and poverty to become the world’s fastest man and woman, winning the greatest honor in all athletics: the Olympic gold medal. The John Cornelius II score speaks to the heart and soul of the winner in all of us.

Black History Month Winter Walking Tour
Where: Woodlawn Manor Park | Sandy Spring, MD
When: February 29, 10am – 2pm
Admission: $8

Take a guided tour of the grounds and buildings of Woodlawn Manor Cultural Park and discover the role enslaved labor played on this 19th century farm. Explore how the enslaved could have nature for escape and evasion while seeking freedom. This guided tour includes exterior space and a natural trail. Participants are recommended to dress to be in the elements. Best for ages 8+. Register in advance.

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Filed under 2020, All ages, Annual, Art, DC, Educational, Exhibit, Free, Live Entertainment, Maryland, Museums, Outdoor, Special Event, Theatre, Virginia, Weekdays, Weekend, Winter

The Weekend Round-Up: March 16-18

Dumbarton Oaks’ magical gardens are open again after many months of renovations

We’re on the brink of spring, even though it might not feel like it. Luckily, this round-up is full of great ways to get you through this last weekend of winter. But if you want a taste of activities for the new season, there are some recs to do that, too. And the posts listing indoor and outdoor ideas are always worth checking out as well. Happy Weekend!

Cherry Blossom Dream
Where: ARTECHOUSE | Southwest DC
When: Through May 6
Admission: $15/adult, $8/child

The newest exhibit at ARTECHOUSE is celebrating spring with one of DC’s seasonal favorites: Cherry Blossoms! Sakura Yume // Cherry Blossom Dream offers a new way to experience our city’s famous flowers. And with stunning imagery and fun interactives, all ages will find it delightful. Even if you don’t plan to go this weekend, I recommended snagging tickets while you can — the exhibits at this gallery always sell out.

Target $2 Family Night
Where: Port Discovery | Baltimore, MD
When: Friday, 4-8pm
Admission: $2

It’s a special Target $2 Family Fun Night at the children’s museum in Baltimore! Enjoy three floors of interactive exhibits along with fun and engaging programs for just a couple of bucks per person. You can also join in Circle Time, take part in Create and Read! activities, and learn about animals with the Maryland SPCA.

Welcome Back to the Garden
Where: Dumbarton Oaks | Georgetown
When: Throughout the weekend
Admission: $10/adult, $8/senior, $5/ages 2-12

After being closed since July for renovations, one of my very favorite places in DC is welcoming visitors again… Dumbarton Oaks has reopened its garden gates for the public to explore and enjoy its gorgeous grounds. I can’t yet tell you what’s new, but you can read about some of our past experiences at the urban oasis here and here.

Kids in the Castle
Where: Heurich House Museum | Dupont Circle, DC
When: Saturday, 11am – 2pm
Admission: Free

Heurich House Museum will open its doors for free, kid-friendly, self-guided tours. Kids in the Castle gives families the chance to explore the ornate details of the Heurich. A suit of armor, woodcarvings of animals and magical beasts, and towering ceilings are just some of the features that make the mansion a magical castle to explore. Children and parents are invited to wander through the house at their own pace and complete a photo scavenger hunt to win prizes. Register for free tickets; only a limited number will be available at the door.

NoVa Maker Faire
Where: George Mason University | Fairfax, VA
When: Sunday, 11am – 5pm
Admission: $15/adult, $5/children

It’s a gathering of tech enthusiasts, engineers, woodworkers, metal workers, auto hackers, artists, teachers, craftspeople, and curious minds at the 5th annual NoVa Maker Faire. The event inspires, informs, connects, and entertains thousands of attendees in a family-friendly environment. Makers from Northern Virginia,DC, and beyond will share their knowledge through hands-on projects for adults and kids in areas from primitive tools and blacksmithing to drones and 3D printers. It’s an event recommended for ages 4-94!

Cherry Blossom Entertainment
Where: Tidal Basin | National Mall Area, DC
When: Throughout the weekend
Admission: Free

We have a couple of weeks to go before the cherry blossom peak, but the National Cherry Blossom Festival officially begins this weekend. The big events come later, but starting Saturday there will be a variety of performances at the Tidal Basin Welcome Area. See what’s coming up over the next few weeks in this post about the best cherry blossom events for families.

Environmental Film Fest
Where: Several locations around DC
When: Throughout the weekend
Admission: Varies by film

Films from across the globe are being screened around the DC-Metro area for the the 26th annual Environmental Film Festival. And there are a few family-oriented flicks among them. Backyard Wilderness at the Air & Space Museum, March of the Penguins 2 at National Geographic, and Love and Bananas at the Naval Heritage Center are a few of them. There are even more films that older kids will likely enjoy and learn from and others to consider for a grown-up outing. View the website for more details.

A Gem of an Event
Where: Montgomery County Fairgrounds | Gaithersburg, MD
When: Saturday, 10am – 6pm & Sunday, 10am – 5pm
Admission: $6/age 12+ free/11 & under

Kids (and adults!) who like fossils, rocks, and/or gems are in for a treat. The 54th Annual Show of the Gem, Lapidary, and Mineral Society of Montgomery County, MD will have all that and then some. There will be dealers selling collectibles, demonstrations, exhibits, door prizes, free workshops, free specimens for kids, mini mines, and more

Show Time
Where: Theatres around the DMV
When: Throughout the weekend
Admission: Varies by venue

* Alexander and the Terrible, Horrible, No Good, Very Bad Day is on stage at Adventure Theatre
* Reserve free tickets for Shakespeare For The Young: The Tiniest Tempest, this week’s Saturday Morning at the National performance
* Ease on down the road to Ford’s Theatre for The Wiz
* The Prince and the Pauper – A Bollywood Tale is on the Imagination Stage for its final weekend
* And little ones will love Balloonacy at the Bethesda Theatre
* Catch a fairytale classic as The Puppet Co. presents Beauty and the Beast
* And Mother Goose Caboose is the Tiny Tots performance for littles there on Saturday
* The Alden Theatre presents The Snow White Variety Show at The Old Firehouse in McLean

Track & Field Championships
Where: PG Sports and Learning Complex | Landover, MD
When: Friday, Saturday, & Sunday, 8am – 6pm
Admission: Free

The 2018 Masters Indoor Championships is taking place in the DC area and promises to be an exciting showcase of indoor track and field events including racewalking, relays, and the men’s and women’s indoor Pentathlon. The competition will feature athletes from 30 to 100+! Among the entrants are reigning world champions, former Olympians, recent world record setters, defending national champions, and many Washington Metro Area stars. Spectators are welcomed, and admission is free!

Big Apple Circus
Where: National Harbor | Oxon Hill, MD
When: Through April 1
Admission: $25-59

The Big Apple Circus is in town and celebrating its 40th Anniversary Season, featuring stunts never before seen under the big top. Known for its one-ring, artistic, European-style, no seat is more than 50 feet from the performers. That’s perfect for viewing some first-ever feats for the Circus along with fan favorites. Hire wire acts, contortionists, bicycle acrobatics, hilarious clowns, and doggie dances are some of thrills and fun you can expect. Read a review of one of our past experiences at a Big Apple Circus show.

Willy Wonka Fundraiser
Where: Mellow Mushroom | Adams Morgan, DC
When: Saturday, 11:30am – 3pm
Admission: Donations encouraged

Want to support education, celebrate community activism, and eat pizza — all while watching the classic film, Willy Wonka & The Chocolate Factory? Join Mellow Mushroom for a SCRUMPDIDDLYUMPTOUS time on Saturday for a family friendly afternoon filled with fizzy lifting drinks, photo booths, invention stations, special guests and a screening of the beloved film. The event is the brainchild of Amelia, a Marie Reed Elementary School 2nd grader! Proceeds will benefit the school’s PTA and donations for Golden Ticket admission will be accepted at the door.

Harlem Globetrotters
Where: Capital One & Eagle Bank Arenas | Penn Quarter, DC & Fairfax, VA
When: Saturday & Sunday
Tickets: $25 and up

The iconic Harlem Globetrotters are coming to DC with their unrivaled family show, featuring some of the greatest athletes on the planet. With incredible ball handling wizardry, amazing rim-rattling dunks and trick shots, side-splitting comedy, and unequaled on-court fan interaction, this event is guaranteed to entertain the whole family.

The Littlest Viking Story Time
Where: Solid State Books | H Street NE, DC
When: Sunday, 10:30-11:30am
Admission: Free

Join illustrator Isabel Roxas for a creative story time, live drawing demo, and signing of her newest book at the new bookstore on H Street! The Littlest Viking tells the tale of Sven… he might be the littlest Viking, but he has no trouble making himself known. He has the loudest warrior cry and the fiercest set of teeth. He loves to pillage and plunder. But there’s a new kid in town—a warrior princess, who is smaller than Sven and even louder. What’s a little Viking to do?

Protectors of the Wild
Where: National Geographic | Downtown DC
When: Saturday, 11am – 1pm
Admission: $15/adult, $10/age 7-12, free/6 & under

At this month’s Adventures in Exploration for families watch a screening of the thrilling film Mission Critical: Orangutans, play Kahoot!, and meet daring and innovative National Geographic Explorers Topher White and Juliana Machado Ferreira, who are using cell phones to stop illegal activity in the rain forest and working to save the world one stolen bird at a time.

Adventure in the Trees
Where: Adventure Park at Sandy Spring | Sandy Spring, MD
When: Throughout the weekend
Admission: Varies by age

The Adventure Park at Sandy Spring reopens for the season this weekend! Kids as young as 5-years-old can experience thrills on the ropes courses and ziplines in the park’s aerial adventure forest, the largest in North America. Children ages 5-6 and an accompanying adult have access to two of the easier courses. Older kids can do much more. It may seem like a pricey venture, but it’s so worth it. Trust me. Read more about the park in this KFDC post.

Burpees and Beer
Where: Capitol Quarter Community Center | Southeast DC
When: Saturday, 9:30-11:30am
Admission: Free

FIT4MOM® Capitol Hill is hosting a special family fitness class to celebrate St. Patrick’s Day. This FREE all ages workout will be structured like a typical FIT4MOM Stroller Strides® class, a stroller-based fitness program designed for moms (and dads) with little ones. The 60-minute, total body workout incorporates cardio, strength, core, songs and activities. The instructor will offer modifications for all fitness levels. Families are also invited to join FIT4MOM® Capitol Hill at Bluejacket Brewery after class for brunch and beers — participating adults are eligible for one complimentary beer!

Kids Corner – Make March Matter
Where: The Plaza | CityCenter, DC
When: Saturday
Admission: Free

Join CityCenter and DC Public Library for Kids Corner – Make March better edition! From 11am – 12pm, librarians from DCPL will lead a story time full of books, songs, rhymes, and fingerplays. This story time is a great way to introduce your child to language skills in a positive and fun outdoor environment. There will be even more kids activities going on throughout the day — see the website for details. *Weather permitting!

Spring Clean-Up
Where: Claude Moore Colonial Farm | McLean, VA
When: Saturday & Sunday, 10am – 3pm
Admission: Free

Help Claude Moore, a local National Park and working colonial farm, get ready for the 2018 season! There will be a variety of chores and tasks available for all ages. Dress for the weather and bring work gloves. Enjoy a complimentary hot dog picnic lunch for your work. RSVP to [email protected]

Are You Ready for Some Fútbol?
Where: Maryland SoccerPlex | Boyds, MD
When: Saturday, 1:30pm
Admission: $25

DC United kicks off their first home (away from home) match of the season at the Maryland SoccerPlex. This is were they will be playing until the new Audi Field opens in an anticipated four months. And if you need to catch up more on this and the local pro soccer scoop, check out the DC United website.

Model Train Open House
Where: Historic Vienna Depot | Vienna, VA
When: Saturday, 1-5pm
Admission: Free

Visit the historical Vienna Stain station to watch model train and trolley activities that realistically depict an actual railroad that existed in North Carolina in the 1950′s, the Western North Carolina (WNC). Locomotive, rail car, and towns industry in this layout is modeled after those places and things as they looked in that era. Thomas the Tank Engine (and a few of his friends) are chugging around among the bigger steam and diesel locomotives. The Vienna Depot is located at 231 Dominion Road NE in Vienna, Virginia just down the street from the red caboose. Check out the virtual tour here.

Brain Awareness Day
Where: National Museum of Health & Medicine | Silver Spring,MD
When: Saturday, 10am – 2pm
Admission: Free

Explore the exciting world of neuroscience! Join brain scientists, researchers, clinicians, and museum educators to enjoy interactive demonstrations and exhibits about the brain. Learn about prevention and treatment of traumatic brain injury Discover how your brain works! Hold a REAL brain! (Note: This is museum is incredibly fascinating but maybe not for the faint of heart. Read more about why here.)

DC Way Soccer Festival
Where: Tyler Elementary School | Capitol Hill, DC
When: Sunday, 12-2pm
Admission: Free

DC Way welcomes parents and kids to gather, play soccer, socialize, and have fun! This festival program consists of fun soccer related games, relays, and contests to win prizes. Activities include soccer tennis, a kids vs. parents game, sharpshooters game, 2v2 tournament, penalty and accuracy contests, obstacle courses, and more.  It’s great way to for kids to practice their skills in an interactive and engaging setting, and an opportunity for parents to join in on the fun as well! There will also be prizes, such as drawstring bags, water bottles, and t-shirts.

* Tech Savvy Mama has a great post about how to help our kids advocate for gun control after the National School Walkout.
* Looking for a fun, active way for your kid to spend Spring Break? DC Way has room available in their spring soccer camp. (Sign up is open for summer, too!)
* Just put this book on my “want to read” list. Have you read it yet?
* The first official post for the new T(w)een Scene section went up last weekend.
* Earlier this week, 7,000 pairs of empty shoes, representing children killed by guns since Sandy Hook, were lined up on the U.S. Capitol lawn to make a statement about gun control. If you didn’t get to witness it in person, see photos and get more info about the Monument to Our Kids.


Filed under 2018, All ages, Annual, Art, DC, Educational, Exhibit, Festival, Free, Live Entertainment, Maryland, Movies, Museums, Outdoor, Seasonal, Sports, Theatre, Virginia, Weekend, Winter

The Weekend Round-Up: March 9-11

The National Portrait Gallery is one of several places to celebrate Women’s History Month

Celebrate Women’s History Month, go green early for St. Patricks Day parades, take the fam to the circus, catch some more live entertainment, get in one last glide on the ice, buy a bike, see a whole new side of Old Town… These are just some of the ways to enrich your time with the kids over the next few days. And for ideas beyond this round-up, check out the Everyday Play page for all kinds of ongoing DC fun. Happy Weekend!

Harlem Wizards Basketball Game
Where: Freedom High School | Chantilly, VA
When: Friday, 7pm
Admission: $15-30

The Harlem Wizards brand of “Trick Hoops & Alley Oops” entertainment basketball has been packing gyms across the globe for 50 years! See them play a local team on Friday evening.  This is a family friendly event for all ages and proceeds will support Freedom High School Athletics.

Women’s History Month Family Day
Where: National Postal Museum | Union Station area, DC
When: Saturday & Sunday, 11am – 4pm
Admission: Free

Celebrate Women’s History Month with the Postal Museum! All ages are welcome to the event that highlights extraordinary women from the past to present through special programs and fun activities. Go on a scavenger hunt, watch a stamp-making demo and create your own, enjoy story time, meet “Amelia Earhart,” and more. (FYI: The museum always hosts fantastic events — KFDC thinks so, anyway.)

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

Drop in at the Portrait Gallery to listen to a story about a notable woman in honor of Women’s History Month and complete a hands-on activity — this weekend faetures Harriet Tubman. When you’re done there, pick up a Portrait Discovery Kit to explore the museum (and the American Art Museum housed in the same building). Be sure to visit the recently installed portraits of President Obama and Michelle Obama while you’re there, too! For more about the program, see this post about a past experience and this one with scenes from a very recent visit.

Big Apple Circus
Where: National Harbor | Oxon Hill, MD
When: Through April 1
Admission: $25-59

The Big Apple Circus is in town and celebrating its 40th Anniversary Season, featuring stunts never before seen under the big top. Known for its one-ring, artistic, European-style, no seat is more than 50 feet from the performers. That’s perfect for viewing some first-ever feats for the Circus’s along with fan favorites. Hire wire acts, contortionists, bicycle acrobatics, hilarious clowns, and doggie dances are some of thrills and fun you can expect. Read a review of one of our past experiences at a Big Apple Circus show.

Show Time
Where: Theatres around the DMV
When: Throughout the weekend
Admission: Varies by venue

* Alexander and the Terrible, Horrible, No Good, Very Bad Day is back at Adventure Theatre after many cancelled shows due to an electrical fire — show them some love and see the show!
* Reserve free tickets for Shakespeare For The Young: The Tiniest Tempest, this week’s Saturday Morning at the National performance
* The Wiz opens at Ford’s Theatre this weekend
* The Prince and the Pauper – A Bollywood Tale is on the Imagination Stage
* And little ones will love Balloonacy at the Bethesda Theatre
* Catch a fairytale classic as The Puppet Co. presents Beauty and the Beast
* And Mother Goose Caboose is the Tiny Tots performance for littles there on Sunday
* The Alden Theatre presents The Snow White Variety Show at The Old Firehouse on Saturday

Women in Aviation and Space Family Day
Where: Steven F. Udvar-Hazy Center | Chantilly, VA
When: Saturday, 10am – 3pm
Admission: Free, but parking is $15

It’s a day full of hands-on activities, inspiring women, and fun challenges to celebrate women’s contributions to space, aviation, and STEM fields. This special event is designed to introduce every member of your unique family to groundbreaking women of the past and the women driving us into the future. Visit the website to see the schedule of activities.

Later, Skaters
Where: Ice rinks around the DMV
When: Throughout the weekend
Admission: Varies by rink

This weekend is probably your last chance to hit the ice al fresco. Most local outdoor ice skating rinks are shutting down their Zambonis after Sunday. See this post listing them all for details on where you can glide ‘neathe the sky one last time this winter.

Recycled Cycles for Sale
Where: Big Bear Cafe | Bloomingdale, DC
When: Saturday, 10am while supplies lasts
Admission: Free

Spring is coming, and with it great cycling weather, so now is a good time to make sure you have a ride that meets your needs. Just in time, Phoenix Bikes, a non-profit youth program and community bike shop in Arlington, VA, will be selling a large inventory of quality, refurbished bikes and new bike gear along with Gearin’ Up Bicycles and Bikes for the World. Check out the sale for a great deal on a bike that also benefits local non-profits and be ready to ride this spring! Big Bear Cafe is located at 1700 1st St NW.

Where: Atlas Performing Arts Center | H Street NE, DC
When: Friday, Saturday, & Sunday
Admission: Varies – see the website

It’s the last weekend of the Atlas’ annual INTERSECTIONS festival that presents tons of fantastic performances in music, theatre, dance, film, and spoken word. Theater for the Very Young: Inside Out is the only one geared especially toward little ones this weekend, but there are many more that older kids and adults will enjoy — see the website for more details.

Gaithersburg St. Patty’s Parade
Where: Washingtonian Center | Gaithersburg, MD
When: Saturday, 10am – 12pm
Admission: Free

The city’s 18th Annual St. Patrick’s Day Parade will include both traditional Irish performances and classic parade pageantry. Celtic dancers, bagpipes, marching bands, clowns, firetrucks, and more will make their way through town.

Exhibit Opening Celebration
Where: Port Discovery | Baltimore, MD
When: Saturday,
Admission: Free with $15.95 museum entry fee

Join Port Discovery for the grand opening of their temporary Native Voices: New England Tribal Families exhibit, where children and families will learn about native communities around New England today by exploring a native school, museum, Pow Wow, artist’s workshop, and grandma’s kitchen. The opening celebration will include including special demonstrations from representatives of the Baltimore American Indian Center, plus interactive theatrical, art, and science activities designed to teach visitors about Native American culture and traditions.

Farm Fun
Where: Ticonderoga Farm | Chantilly, VA
When: Saturday & Sunday
Admission: $14.95/ages 2+, $12.95/adults

Start celebrating Easter early at Ticonderoga Farm’s annual spring festival! With giant slides, awesome jumping pillows, playgrounds, animals, mazes, and more, the farm in Chantilly is a blast everyday (it’s open daily), but they take the fun up a notch on weekends in early spring. Along with the permanent amusement, there are egg hunts and visits from the Easter Bunny. Be sure to check the website for timing of specific activities. For an idea of what’s there, see this post about their Winter Festival, which is much of the same, but with Easter instead of Christmas festivities.

Bizarre Alexandria
Where: Old Town | Alexandria, VA
When: Saturday, 2-3:30pm
Admission: $28

Join Atlas Obscura Society D.C. as they take an unusual tour led by the walking, talking encyclopedia Ed Moser. A former White House scribe, writer for the “Tonight Show,” historian, author, and professional tour guide. Explore a colonial mansion turned Union hospital that’s home to a ghostly cat. Learn how an ailing Washington was treated by doctors who were influenced by Mary Shelley’s Frankenstein. See the place where the author of Treasure Island found “real-life pirates.” Alexandria is also where the Bill of Rights was formulated, the “South’s Tea Party” took place, and Confederate spies faced off against Northern adversaries. It’s an exploration of Old Town as you’ve never seen it before!

Ireland on the Wharf
Where: The Wharf | Southwest DC
When: Saturday, 2-6pm
Admission: Free

They’re bringing the luck of the Irish to the waterfront at the Ireland on The Wharf festival! Celebrate the beauty and tradition of the Emerald Isle with bagpipers, a beer garden, Irish dancers, live music, and plenty of family-friendly activities.

Little Red Riding Hood
Where: Highland Elementary School | Silver Spring, MD
When: Saturday, 11am – 12pm
Admission: Free

Seymour Barab’s funny and sprightly one-act opera delights youngsters as they follow Little Red Riding Hood’s merry jaunt through the woods to Grandmother’s house. Join InterAct Story Theatre and Victorian Lyric Opera Company for their fresh take on this classic children’s opera…and watch out for that sneaky Big Bad Wolf! Best for ages 4 and up.

Nowruz: A Persian New Year Celebration
Where: Freer|Sackler Gallery | National Mall, DC
When: Sunday, 11am – 5pm
Admission: Free

Ring in the Persian New Year at the annual Nowruz celebration! Free attractions and activities for all ages include storytelling, hands-on art projects, live music, film screenings, calligraphy, food, and the featured exhibitions Engaging the Senses, Feast Your Eyes, and The Prince and the Shah: Royal Portraits from Qajar Iran.

DC St. Patrick’s Day Parade
Where: Constitution Ave. 7th to 17th ST NW | Downtown DC
When: Sunday, 12pm
Admission: Free

Find a spot on the curb along Constitution Avenue to watch the 48th annual St. Patrick’s parade roll through the city. “Showcasing DC Irish Culture” is this year’s theme, celebrating local Irish-American leaders who showcase Washington’s unique Irish heritage beyond the city. Floats, marching bands, Irish dancers, bag pipers, members of the police and fire departments, and other entertainment will be part of the celebratory procession.

Family Dance
Where: Glen Echo Park Ballroom Annex | Glen Echo, MD
When: Sunday, 3pm
Admission: $5/ages 4 and up

Join the Family Dance session that takes place the second Sunday of each month. It’s a rare opportunity to experience the joy of dance with your children and the community. No experience is necessary, just and dance — a family dance leader will show you everything you need to know right then and there, with a focus on having fun! Recommended for families with kids ages 4-12, but all ages welcome!

* Do you have worn kids’ shoes to donate? Avaaz, a global, independent campaigning organization, is planning a political art installation — a monument to victims of gun violence — in front of the US capitol early next week. They will place thousands of shoes to represent the lives lost to gun violence in the last decade, and they need more shoes! Go here to find out where to send or drop off shoes around the DC area.
* The long overdue obituaries of remarkable women are now being featured in The New York Times’ new Overlooked series.
* I recently attended my first Moms Demand Action meeting. Find out how you can get involved, too.
* Sasha and I have been reading this book together, and we both love it.
* For the T(ween) Scene: Coming up at the National Building Museum is a Teen Workshop: When Architecture Tells a Story on March 25.
* Little Pearl (from the Rose’s Luxury team) is a great new Capitol Hill spot — café by day, wine bar at night.


Filed under 2018, All ages, Annual, Art, DC, Educational, Exhibit, Festival, Free, Indoor Play, Live Entertainment, Maryland, Museums, Music, Outdoor, Parade, Seasonal, Special Event, Theatre, Virginia, Weekend, Winter

The Weekend Round-Up: March 2-4

See model airplanes soar at the National Building Museum on Sunday

Some upbeat news as we wind down the week: The National Park Service just announced peak cherry blossom bloom dates: March 17-20. Spring will be here before we know it! In the meantime, here are some great ways to enjoy one of the last weekends of winter. Happy Weekend!

Women’s History Day
Where: DAR Museum | Downtown DC
When: Saturday, 10am – 2pm
Admission: Free

Celebrate Women’s History Month at the DAR Museum and join them to recognize powerful American women who left their mark on history! Explore the exhibits, archives, and library as you learn about female explorers, scientists, artists, activists, authors, spies, and more through hands-on activities. Decorate a “Votes for Women” sash like Alice Paul. Conduct chemistry experiments like Alice Ball. Travel around the “world” like Nellie Bly. And crack a code like Mary Bowser. See the website for more details.

Intersect with the Performing Arts
Where: Atlas Performing Arts Center | H Street NE, DC
When: Friday, Saturday, & Sunday
Admission: Varies – see the website

It’s the second weekend of the Atlas’ annual INTERSECTIONS festival that presents tons of fantastic performances in music, theatre, dance, film, and spoken word with several exhibitions especially for families. See Theater for the Very Young: Inside Out. Enjoy Shakespeare for the Young with The Tiniest Tempest. Really Spicy Opera presents The Princess Pirate Party Musical. Take in Billosophy: For Kids by Dreamcatcher Entertainment. And learb about Black History through interactive music and storytelling with the Culture Queen at the Free Café Concert. These are just the most kid-friendly shows — the whole line-up throughout the Festival is worth checking out by adults.

Shake Up Your Saturday
Where: Folger Shakespeare Library | Capitol Hill, DC
When: Saturday, 10am – 12pm
Admission: Free, but registration required

Join the Folger’s family program that takes place the first Saturday of every month. In this “Printer School” session, kids can learn the art of book printing. Ages 5-7 go at 10-11am, and ages 8-14 at 11am – 12pm. Go here to sign up. And be sure to read more about the Folger Shakespeare library in this new KFDC post.

Alexandria St. Patrick’s Day Parade CANCELLED due to weather
Where: Old Town | Alexandria, VA
When: Saturday, 12:15pm
Admission: Free

Celebrate the Irish holiday a a bit early in Old Town Alexandria. Pre-parade festivities, including a classic car show and dog show, begin in the morning, and the annual procession kicks off at 12:15pm at Alfred and King Streets, then winds through Old Town, showcasing elected officials, Irish Ambassadors, military commanders, scout troops, high school bands, and local celebrities.

Show Time
Where: Theatres around the DMV
When: Throughout the weekend
Admission: Varies by venue

* Watch a book fave come to life with Pinkalicous the Musical at BlackRock Center for the Performing Arts
* Reserve free tickets for Traveling Lantern’s Pinnochio, this week’s Saturday Morning at the National performance
* See Alexander and the Terrible, Horrible, No Good, Very Bad Day at Adventure Theatre (Update: all shows cancelled this weekend)
* The Prince and the Pauper – A Bollywood Tale is on the Imagination Stage
* Catch a fairytale classic as The Puppet Co. presents Beauty and the Beast
* And Penguins’ Playground is the Tiny Tots performance for littles there on Saturday
* It’s a symphony for children as the NSO presents Two Divas and a Bear at the Kennedy Center

Weekend Walk-In: 3D Sculpture
Where: American Visionary Arts Museum | Baltimore, MD
When: Saturday, 1-4pm
Admission: $5

Join the museum for their hands-on, drop-in, once-a-month art-making workshop in the AVAM classroom! Education staff will help you explore new creative territory & make a project inspired by one of their beloved visionary artists. During this session, create a 3D sculpture inspired by the mystery of the heart! Supplies & boundless inspiration provided, and all ages are welcome.

Harry Potter Wizard School Scavenger Hunt
Where: National Gallery of Art | National Mall, DC
When: Saturday, 2-4pm
Admission: $17.50/ages 10-17, $19.50/adult

Join Watson Adventures on a unique Harry Potter-themed scavenger hunt that kids and adults will love! Follow in the footsteps of young wizards on a field trip to the National Gallery in search of art that echoes characters, places and enchanted objects in the famed Harry Potter books and movies. The hunt is not an addition to or variation on Harry’s adventures, but instead references to the books will provide a surprising bridge to many strange and wonderful works of art. This hunt is designed for kids and adults to do together (but all-adult teams are allowed to compete separately) Kids must be accompanied by an adult. Read about this super fun adventure in this KFDC post.

Lunch with Ferdinand
Where: Arlington Cinema Draft House | Arlington, VA
When: Saturday, 12:45pm & Sunday, 1:15pm
Admission: $8 (plus food & drinks)

Catch an Oscar nominated flick and enjoy a good meal at a screening of Ferdinand at the Draft House! The animated flick about young bull who escapes from a training camp in rural Spain is family-friendly and getting lots of love from critics. Children must be accompanied by an adult.

The Great Indoors
Where: Around the DMV
When: Throughout the weekend
Admission: Varies by activity

As the mercury drops a bit this weekend, you might be seeking out fun indoors. The Great Indoors post just hit a milestone and now lists 100 suggestions for things to do, most them mainstays around DC, and just about all of them tried and tested by KFDC.

Clifton STEM Fair
Where: Lord of Life Preschool | Clifton, VA
When: Saturday, 10am – 2pm
Admission: $5

Bring the whole family and solve THE GREAT STEM MYSTERY for a prize! Vendors who specialize in Science, Technology, Engineering and Math, as well as Art will be there throughout the school with fun activities for kids 2-12. Enjoy entertainment by Peter McCory “The One Man Band,” and food and bake sale items will be available for purchase (cash only). GIRL SCOUTS: They will have a STEM fun patch available this year, included in the price of admission! The preschool is located at 13421 Twin Lakes Dr in Clifton, VA.

Flying in the Great Hall
Where: National Building Museum | Judiciary Square, DC
When: Sunday, 11am – 4pm
Admission: Free

Partake in some super fly activities at the Building Museum. All ages can drop in on Sunday to watch as the DC Maxecuters demo all kinds of model planes in and across the Great Hall. Of course, you can enjoy all the other NBM offerings the rest of the weekend (admission fee required for some).

Chesapeake Critters CANCELLED due to power outage
Where: Buddie Ford Nature Center | Alexandria, VA
When: Saturday,11am – 12:30pm
Admission: $15

Did you know Alexandria is part of the Chesapeake Bay watershed? Kids and their families are invited to meet (and touch!) some of the live critters living in the bay. A marine biologist will be at Buddie Ford to discuss their roles and impact on this important ecosystem! Registration required for each child – sign up here (search fro Chesapeake Critters). Parents/guardians are free. Read more about the wonderful nature center in this KFDC post.

Sensory-Friendly Purim Celebration
Where: Washington Hebrew Congregation | Woodley Park, DC
When: Sunday, 10:30-11:30am
Admission: $5/family + canned good to donate

Does your child cover their ears in a crowd? Do they avoid loud noises? We will minimize the noise and other sensory input but maximize the fun! Join us for crafts, an interactive reading of the Purim story (megillah), a mitzvah (good deed) project and treats to take home. Best for ages 4-8. Costumes encouraged but not required. Pre-register as space is limited.

The Rumpus Room: A Family Dance Party
Where: U Street Music Hall | U Street, DC
When: Sunday, 11am – 2pm
Admission: $10, $30/4-ticket pack

Hit the dance floor with the Rumpus Room, a daytime dance party for families, with sounds provided by DJs Marc Meistro and Steven Faith (who are parents themselves). Created by DJs who wanted to share the nightclub experience with their kids, the Rumpus Room adapts the club environment — think disco ball, lights, and of course music — into safe family-friendly fun. Get ready for a disco filled with little ones, parents, grandparents, aunties, and uncles. The soundtrack will be a mix of G-rated dance hits and classics, all at a kid-friendly volume. They provide the shakers, hula-hoops, beach balls and other props. You go to dance! Designed for kids 8 and under and their caregivers, but older siblings are welcome. Drink specials for adults!

Doktor Kaboom: “It’s Just Rocket Science”
Where: The Old Firehouse, | McLean, VA
When: Sunday, 2pm
Admission: $15, $10/MCC district residents

Doktor Kaboom is an over-the-top German physicist with a passion for science that knows no bounds. Sporting chrome goggles, orange lab coat, motorcycle boots and wicked cool hair, Doktor Kaboom travels the world, thrilling adults and children alike with his explosive comedic style of science experiments designed to involve, excite, educate and entertain! Recommended for ages 7+.

Purim Carnival
Where: Edlavitch DCJCC | Downtown DC
When: Sunday, 10am – 12pm
Admission: $23/family

Celebrate Purim with games, arts and crafts, hamantaschen cookies, songs, and a play! You can also give back to the community by preparing sandwiches for Martha’s Table and costumes for Only Make Believe, a non-profit that creates and performs interactive theater for children in hospitals and care facilities.

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

There aren’t that many outdoor skating weekends left this season season, so take advantage while you can! Enjoy art as you skate at the Sculpture Garden; circle the rink at Washington Harbour; glide on the newest area rink at The Wharf; or do some shopping then skate at Pentagon Row, Tyson’s Corner, Veteran’s Plaza, Rockville Town Square, or Reston Town Center. This post has details on both alfresco and indoor ice skating options in the area. And a heads-up that Canal Park closed early this season!

Cool Hikes
Where: Around the DMV
When: Throughout the weekend
Admission: Varies by locale

Bundle up for a walk in the woods. See buds about to bloom and get excited for spring, tramp in places with scenic views, hike and explore history at interesting locales, and enjoy a day of active fun. This post has a a bunch of recommendations for good walks in the woods with the kids.

* In case you missed it last weekend, KFDC just turned 8, and I’m celebrating in some new ways.
* Looking to get a head start on some spring cleaning? Spekless Cleaning is offering KidFriendly DC readers $30 off their first service. Visit their website and use code kidfriendlydc.
* The giveaway for a chance to win a week of summer camp with RDUTennis ends this Sunday.
* The Town of Occoquan is hosting a Community Peep Contest, and anyone is welcome to build a diorama and enter to win!
* The father of a Parkland shooting victim shared his moving eulogy for his son with WaPo’s On Parenting blog.
* This news and this, too, are encouraging. This, not so much.
* As a mom of an almost-teen, I loved this post on parenting them. (Thanks to Darcy from No Monsters in My Bed for sharing it.)


Filed under 2018, All ages, Annual, Art, DC, Educational, Exhibit, Free, Indoor Play, Live Entertainment, Maryland, Movies, Museums, Music, Outdoor, Seasonal, Special Event, Theatre, Virginia, Weekend, Winter