The weather may not signal spring’s arrival, but many events around DC indicate the new season is here. Cherry Blossom festivities, Easter celebrations, annual museum programs, and other activities that occur this time of year are reminders that we’ve moved beyond winter, despite the cold. And luckily, many of them are happening indoors, so you can stay warm and cozy while enjoying your days out. Read about them below and get even more ideas in this post about inside fun around the DC-Metro. Happy Weekend!
Kites of Asia Family Day
Where: National Air & Space Museum
When: Saturday, 10am -3pm
The first aviation-related objects collected by the Smithsonian were a group of Chinese kites, donated in 1876. Celebrate this unique start to the National Air and Space Museum’s collection by visiting on the Kites of Asia family day. Experience the artistry and beauty of Asian kites, see indoor kite flying, and make your own kite!
National Cherry Blossom Festival Family Days
Where: National Building Museum
When: Saturday, 10am – 4pm & Sunday, 11am – 4pm
Celebrate the start of cherry blossom season at the National Building Museum’s 8th annual family festival for kids of all ages. The weekend will feature hands-on activities, interactive art demonstrations, and performances that celebrate spring and explore Japanese arts and design. View the website for specifics. And to see what other festivities are on the Cherry Blossom Festival calendar, see this post from a couple of days ago.
Where: Around the area
When: Throughout the weekend
Admission: Varies by locale
Many places around the area are hosting egg hunts, Easter bunny visits, and more spring fun to celebrate Easter and the season. Even if you’re not big on the holiday, there are attractions beyond bunnies and candy-filled eggs that will have the whole family hopping with joy. See this post for a list of them.
DC United vs. Columbus Crew
Where: RFK Stadium
When: Saturday, 3pm
Admission: Tickets prices vary
The DC United takes on the Columbus Crew at home this weekend, and you can catch the match along with loads of other family fun. Games are always a blast, and the VW Garage offers activities for all ages — face painting, a Zig Zag challenge, trivia, and more. Even better, you can score a Family Pack — 4 tickets, 4 hotdogs, and 4 drinks – for just $108! Get more info on the match and deal here.
Where: Local Theatres
When: Throughout the Weekend
Admission: Varies by venue
Here’s the live entertainment on local stages this weekend:
– The Washington Ballet presents Cinderella at the Kennedy Center
– Catch Jack & the Beanstalk at The Puppet Co. or see a Tiny Tots show there.
– Enjoy theatre and reggae sounds at Adventure Theatre’s Three Little Birds
– See The Big Meow at Wooly Mammoth Theatre.
– From Here to There is Imagination Stage’s newest Early Childhood program
– Mother Goose: Jazz’n Blues! is this week’s Saturday Morning at the National performance.
– The Creative Cauldron in Falls Church presents Peter Pan and Wendy
– Jason Invisible opens at the Kennedy Center this weekend.
– Hello Dolly! is the latest Ford’s Theatre production.
– Marsha Goodman-Wood is playing the Saturday 10:30am show and The Banjo Man will provide the family entertainment on Sunday at Jammin’ Java.
– The NSO Family Concert: Tchaikovsky Discovers America will be perfomred at the Kennedy Center on Sunday.
Get details on all of these production in this post about entertainment this season.
Environmental Film Fest
Where: Various locations
When: Through March 24
Admission: Varies by film
Nearly 200 diverse and arresting films from 50 countries will be screened at 75 venues around the DC-Metro area during the 21st annual Environmental Film Festival. And there are several family-oriented flicks among them. Young film viewers can watch An Original Duckmentary, follow the journey of a sea turtle, enjoy the remarkable true story of an orphaned baby otter, learn about hummingbirds and hippos, and see many more engaging and inspiring films that salute the environment. View the website for showtimes and details on films.
Mary Poppins on Ice
Where: Gardens Ice House Patrick Arena
When: Saturday & Sunday, 1pm & 3:30pm
See a children’s classic come to life on ice as the Gardens Figure Skating Club presents its ninth annual spring show Mary Poppins on Ice. The figure skating performance portrays a magical nanny who skates with her umbrella into an English household to care for rambunctious children and to teach the entire family that they love and need each other. Featuring over 60 skaters performing to music from the 1964 Disney musical and the ongoing theater adaptation based on the children’s book series by P.L. Travers, the cast includes local skaters from age 4 to adult, integrating skill levels ranging from beginner to advanced, creating a visually exciting theatrical experience. (Note: The giveaway has ended.)
Lowe’s Build and Grow
Where: Local Lowe’s Stores
When: Saturday, 10am
Head to Lowe’s on Saturday, where kids can make a free wooden project with parent help. This session’s creation will be a Piranhakeet Chomper inspired by DreamWorks Animation’s THE CROODS! Each participant also receives a free apron, goggles, a project themed patch, and a certification of merit upon completion of their project. Go here to register.
Women in Aviation and Space
Where: Steven F. Udvar-Hazy Center
When: Saturday, 10am – 3pm
Admission: Free, but parking is $15
Bring the whole family the Dulles arm of Air & Space to learn about the incredible contributions of women in aviation, science, and aerospace. Enjoy hands-on activities, guest speakers, a theatrical presentation, book signings, and Flights of Fancy Story Time for young visitors.
Wahzhazhe, An Osage Ballet
Where: National Museum of the American Indian
When: Friday & Saturday, 3pm
This contemporary ballet brings together unique and diverse qualities of Oklahoma history and culture: a reverence for classical ballet that was the legacy of two famous Osage ballerinas, Maria and Marjorie Tallchief, and the richness of Osage traditional music, dance, and textile arts. Catch a free performance in the American Indian Museum’s Rasmusen Theatre. And a word of advice: Get there on time! (We were a few minutes late on Wednesday and were not allowed to enter). Afterwards, head to the imagiNATIONS Activity Center on the third floor for play time, arts & crafts, and more.
Read! Build! Play!
Where: Watha T. Daniel-Shaw Library
When: Saturday, 11am
Join neighbors and friends at your local library for creative building sessions filled with guided activities, inspirational songs and time for free build especially for little ones. The LEGO DUPLO Read! Build! Play! experience demonstrates how reading coupled with construction play can engage, excite and encourage early literacy development, and spark exploration. Families are introduced to new ideas to encourage play and learning at home. The Watha T. Daniel-Shaw Library is located at 1630 7th Street NW. (Note: These will be happening throughout the week at other venues, so if you can’t make it Saturday, there will be more opportunities… I’ll keep you posted.)
Stories in Art
Where: National Gallery of Art
When: Saturday & Sunday
Kids ages 4-7 can explore the work of artist René Magritte, as they hear a reading of the book Magritte’s Marvelous Hat by D. B. Johnson and step inside René Magritte’s imaginative world and explore the art of creating illusion. Then, they will do an art project inspired by her work. Sessions are at 10:30am, 11:30am, 12:30pm, and 1:30pm on Saturday, and 11:30am, 12:30pm, 1:30pm, and 2:30 on Sunday. Sign-in takes place in the East Building Atrium, beginning at 10am on Saturday (11am on Sunday) and continues until all spaces are filled. Admission is free. Read a KFDC review of the Stories in Art program here.
Clean Up at the Colonial Farm
Where: Claude Moore Colonial Farm
When: Saturday & Sunday, 10am – 3pm
Help the local living history museum and working farm prepare for the 2013 season! Volunteers can rake leaves, clear and mulch paths, haul brush and firewood, move rail fences, waterproof outbuildings, whitewash the colonial farmhouse, split firewood, fill garden pots and more. There are jobs for every age and skill level – families are welcome. A picnic hot dog lunch and complimentary pass to one of the Farm’s 2013 Market Fairs will be given out to all volunteers. Bring work gloves and dress for weather. RSVP to email@example.com.
March Madness, Beyblade Style
Where: Martin Luther King Jr. Park
When: Saturday, 11am – 4pm
Admission: $5 entry fee
If your kid is a Beyblade enthusiast, consider checking out this tournament taking place in Silver Spring this weekend. Word has it these events are super fun, inclusive, and a great bargain. Registration begins at 11am, and the tourney time is around 12:30pm. The day should end around 3pm for most, 4pm for finalists.
Where: Theatre Lab
When: Saturday, 10am – 12pm
Learn about Theatre Lab’s programs and offerings at their free Open House. There will be information their about camps and classes, plus the whole crew can enjoy some activities while you’re at it: Mini-classes for kids and adults as well as arts and crafts will be available to all guests.
Portrait Story Days
Where: National Portrait Gallery
When: Saturday 1-4pm, Sunday 2-5pm
Drop in 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 early environmentalist Rachel Carson.
Explore Japanese Culture
Where: Library of Congress
When: Saturday, 10am – 3pm
Inspired by Japan’s connection to the Cherry Blossom Festival, this event welcomes children and adults to explore Japanese culture through a variety of activities. Try your hand at origami, enjoy theater presentations, see a kimono demonstration, and more. This all takes place in the Young Readers Center located on the Ground Floor of the LOC’s Thomas Jefferson Building.
Culture Shock Dance
Where: Rachel M. Schlesinger Concert Hall & Arts Center
When: Saturday, 6pm
Admission: $30/ages 6 and up, $20/5 and under
Culture Shock DC presents its 4th Annual Youth Showcase—”One Nation Under A Groove,” featuring the freshest and most talented young Hip Hop/Urban dance teams from ages 4 to 18 in the DMV and internationally. The schedule of events includes performances, workshops, dance battles, and more! Purchase tickets online here.