Yesterday, a friend of mine posted a photo on Faceboook of the contents of her son’s pockets that she’d emptied before doing laundry. The random collection of sticks, bottle caps, coins, Legos, beads, and a AA battery made me laugh and drew a slew of comments and “likes”. Many of us likely have been there, finding odd items among our children’s treasures, wondering what kind of magic they held for our curious kids, and often feeling relieved we found them before the washing machine did.
This weekend’s recommended family fun is kind of like those pocket contents — a hodgepodge of events and activities with their own wonderful potential. Whether you take the kids to run through fountain sprays, enjoy carnival thrills, savor French culture, rock out at a concert, join an art workshop, or get outdoors for a hike in the woods, a “magical” experience is always a possibility. Happy Weekend!
Lovin’ Summer – Free concerts, outdoor swimming, garden play, sprayground fun. Activities exclusive to the season can all be enjoyed this weekend. This post has the full scoop on these joys of summer.
Tennis, Anyone? – See the sport played in a whole new way as the Washington Kastles take on the St. Louis Aces tonight. There will also be a special reception and exhibition by tennis legend Chris Evert. The match starts at 7pm, but gates open at 5pm. Tickets are still available and can be purchased online through Ticketmaster.
Seize the Beautiful Days – It’s supposed to be a nice weekend weather-wise, so these suggestions for enjoying a beautiful day outdoors with the kids are definitely worth a look.
DC Summer Carnival – While I can’t vouch for this fair in the parking lot behind RFK Stadium, I have driven by several times and it looks like it has all the trappings for amusement park fun. The Mega Drop, Merry-Go-Round, a Ferris Wheel and other big carnival rides are all easily visible, and game booths and food vendors round it all out. Open tonight from 5pm – 10pm, and Saturday and Sunday from 12pm – 12am. Unlimited ride passes and wristbands are available for $25 and can be purchased at the carnival entrance every day. Individual tickets are 20-for-$20 or 4-for-$5.
Farm to Street Party – Celebrate local food at Washington, DC’s first ever Farm-to-Street Party. On Saturday from 12-3pm, enjoy scrumptious dishes made with ingredients from local farms, local craft beer, and wine. Local entrepreneurs, chefs, and non-profit organizations making local food available in Washington will be in attendance. Guests can enjoy music from local artists, participate in a local pie eating contest, cool off in a dunking booth, take part in children’s activities, and more. Purchase tickets online or pay with credit/cash at the door.
Backyard Campout – The National Children’s Museum is bringing outdoor adventure to the Launch Zone. In collaboration with REI (Recreational Equipment, Inc) Outreach, guests can feel like they’re in the great outdoors by discovering the uses of various camping equipment, maneuvering through tents, and learning the fun aspects of camping in nature. Kids can also take part in hands-on exploration of deer and black bear tracks from the Maryland Department of Natural Resources. The program has been held various days this week and will also run on Sunday as well as next Wednesday, Friday, and Saturday. This is a free event.
Jam with Rocknoceros – The local band adored by kids is playing two shows at Jammin’ Java on Saturday. Families can opt for a mid-morning performance at 11am or rock at for the 7pm happy hour show. Tickets for each are $10 and available for purchase online.
French Festival – Experience French culture the way it was 300 years ago at Hillwood Estate, Museum, and Gardens. Children and adults can enjoy lively theatrics presented by the New York Baroque Dance Company and Opera Lafayette as they engage guests in music, dance, and fanciful history. Other activities will include traditional games like jacks and hoop-tossing, an art project where kids can decorate their own miniature furniture, gallery talks about the French collection, a “Kings, Queens, & Soup Tureens” audio tour. Admission is $18/public, $15/seniors, $12/ Hillwood and Alliance Française Members, $5/kids 6-18, free for children under 6. The festival runs on from 10am – 7pm and Sunday from 1pm – 5pm.
Good News – Take advantage of the Newseum’s “Kids Free Summer Fun Deal” that offers free admission to kids 18 and under through September 5 with one paid adult admission. It’s a perfect opportunity to visit a museum that you may have put off touring because of the entrance fee (we’re so spoiled by all of DC freebies) as well as a great way to beat the summer heat.
Stories in Art – On Sunday, the National Gallery of Art’s summer drop-in program welcomes kids ages 4-7 to explore Dutch art through storytelling, gallery tours, and hands-on projects. Sessions are hourly starting at 11:30am. Sign-up begins at 11am in the West Building Rotunda, and space is limited. Read a review of our experience at a session last summer. And for more details on this summer’s program and tips on signing up, see this post from last week.
Portrait Story Days – Drop in at the National Portrait Gallery on Saturday and Sunday from 2-5pm, to listen to a story about a person who has influenced American history and culture and to create a special piece of art. This weekend, learn about baseball player Roberto Clemente.
Family Films – There are a couple of movie series especially for families that run on the weekends. The Atlas Performing Arts Center hosts its Family Series on Saturdays at 5pm. This week’s showing will be “Chicken Run.” While tickets are free, there is a $2 per ticket booking fee. For a screening under the stars, head to National Harbor on Sunday for its free Movies on the Potomac series. This week, see “Despicable Me,” starting just after sunset.