Monday – See the newest IMAX playing at the Smithsonian. Mysteries of the Unseen World just opened at the Johnson IMAX Theater in the Natural History Museum, and it’s sure to fascinate. Check the schedule for showtimes, as there are several screenings throughout the day. Tickets are $9. The movie is only about 40 minutes, so plan to spend more time at the museum and explore the exhibits. (Note: The giveaway mentioned in the post about the film has ended.)
Tuesday – Take the kids to see world famous, Grammy Award-winning violinist Joshua Bell play at Union Station — for free! You may have read or heard about his stint here several years ago when he played in a Metro station as a social experiment for a Washington Post article; they wanted to see if anyone would stop to hear his beautiful music (not many did). He’s coming back for a do-over and to promote his new album and music education. You can catch his performance in Union Station’s main hall at 12:30pm.
Wednesday – Romp on the playground and in an old train car, discover some history of the area, and take a pontoon boat tour at Bladensburg Waterfront Park. The free boat rides are offered Tuesday – Friday at 12-12:45pm through October 31. Admission to the park is also free.
Thursday – Head to an area farm to take advantage of smaller weekday crowds at one of several fall festivals that are already underway. See this guide to find out where you can celebrate the season Monday thru Friday as well as the weekends.
Friday – Go for a hike at Great Falls. Whether you opt for the Maryland or Virginia side, you can’t go wrong. Enjoy spectacular views of the falls and rapids from several overlooks, hike easy trails along the river or through the woods, and stop in the Visitor Center (there’s one on each side) to learn more about the area’s history and wildlife. The park is open 7am – dark, the Visitors Centers 10am – 4pm. Admission is $5/car.