The Weekend Round-Up: August 19-21

A peek of the US Botanic Garden


Links to posts loaded with ideas for local fun and recreation:
Best Outdoors in the DC Area
* Off-the-Beaten-Path Museums
* Local Hikes with Kids
* Swim Spots
* On the Water
* Bike Rides
* The Great Indoors
* Peaceful Places
* Baltimore with Kids

Summer Fun
Where: Throughout the DMV
When: All weekend
Admission: Varies by activity

Summer break is starting its wind-down as kids begin heading back to school on Monday (mine, anyway). But plenty is still going on to enjoy the season… Spraygrounds, special exhibits, music and movies in the open air, beach fun, crab feasts, mini golf and carousels rides. The guide to Summer in DC has all the inspo you need to eke out the most of the season.

All’s Fair
Where: Arlington, Montgomery, & PW Counties | VA & MD
When: Throughout the weekend
Admission: Varies by locale

County fair season continues as Arlington’s annual fest is underway, and Montgomery and Prince William counties host their final days. All are chock full of amusement for everyone, with carnival rides and games, farm animals, live entertainment, pony rides, the junk food gamut, pig races, and so much more. This post has the whole scoop on all of the county fun.

Indoor Gardening
Where: US Botanic Garden | Capitol Area, DC
When: Throughout the weekend
Admission: Free

The US Botanic Garden is one of those places that always makes for a great family visit with plenty that all ages will dig (literally, for some)! Explore a variety of plant collections as you walk amid woodland flora, desert areas, and tropical rainforest (one of the the most stunning spaces in DC).  The current Cultivate: Growing Food in a Changing World exhibit has interesting interactive elements. And the adorable Children’s Garden lets little ones dig and plant and play.  Nearby the museums, it’s great to pop-in if you’re on the National Mall, but also worthy of a visit itself.  Read more about the  USBG here and here.

Chuck Brown Day
Where: Chuck Brown Memorial Park | Northeast, DC
When: Saturday, 2-7pm
Admission: Free

Celebrate a local musical legend that took the spirit and culture of DC across the world. BYO lawn chairs or blanket and enjoy an afternoon of free live entertainment with Rare Essence, Doug E Fresh, and the Chuck Brown Band will be performing. Bring the whole fam — there will also be a kids activities area, food trucks on site, and The Chuck Brown Foundation will be giving out free backpacks for the kids (starting at 1pm). Limited free parking will be available on the field at 24th & Franklin Streets NE.

Take a Dip
Where: Around the DC area
When: Throughout the weekend
Admission: Varies by locale

Summer break is winding down as  some DC kids head back to school on Monday, so get in some quintessential summer fun and go for a swim!   This round-up has details on where to do that. Find beaches on the Bay (and even Atlantic), lakes and rivers, and swimming holes and creeks — all that welcome the public to take a dip.

Big Dig Potato Harvest
Where: Great Country Farms | Bluemont, VA
When: Saturday & Sunday, 9am – 6pm
Admission: $10/child or $12/adult

Grab a shovel and head to Great Country to take a wagon ride out to the fields and dig up your own potato treasures. After digging, play all day in the five-acre play area, with attractions including Putt Putt golf, the Farm Ninja Warrior obstacle course, mazes, swings, slides, animals to visit, and feed, and so much more! PYO peaches and apples will also be available this weekend. Buy tickets in advance here. (Note: Their website says 2021, but it is this weekend!)

Explore! Children’s Festival
Where: Art Place | Fort Totten, DC
When: Saturday, 1-3pm
Admission: Free

Calling all families to join in on the fun at the Explore! Children’s Festival series that will take place over the next three Saturdays. Enjoy free face painting, balloon twisting, magic shows, arts and crafts, sweet treats, and snacks. This weekend, guests can also enjoy live music from The Uncle Devin Show, an interactive musical experience for children that uses percussion instruments to cultivate their minds – a dynamic cross between DC’s Trouble Funk and Schoolhouse Rock. All events are free and promise to be fun-filled. Art Place is located at 400 Galloway Street NE.

Afro-Latino Caribbean Day Celebration
Where: Silver Spring Slave Museum | Silver Spring, MD
When: Saturday, 12-6pm
Admission: Free

Enjoy day of free outdoor and indoor exhibits, sights, sounds, food trucks, and vendors that celebrate Latino, African, and Caribbean culture.The festival will highlight World Music from the diaspora, dances with audience participation, and songs of courage and freedom in Spanish, French, and Creole. Guest panelists will share the contributions that people of African descent have made to the community and global culture. The program will end with bands from Panama and Trinidad and Tobago and include a carnival display of vibrant costumes and national dress.

DC World Reggae Festival
Where: RFK Stadium | Northeast DC
When: Saturday, 12-11pm
Admission: Starts at $70

It’s the biggest Caribbean Celebration of the SUMMER! Head to Washington, D.C. on Aug 20, 2022, to celebrate Jamaica’s 60th Independence Day with Beenie Man, BERES HAMMOND, Tiwa Savage, 2 Baba, Ras Slick, Kerwin Dubois, Rupee and more! Gates open at 12:00pm EST at the RFK Festival Ground. Come and enjoy the best Caribbean Cuisine, Kids Zone and a lifetime of memories.

Sneaker Con
Where: Washington Convention Center | Mt. Vernon, DC
When: Saturday & Sunday, 12-7pm
Admission: Starts at $30

People who are really into their kicks will want to check out this event dedicated to all things sneakers. Touting itself as “THE Greatest Sneaker Show on EARTH.” there will be over 400 vendors buying, selling and trading sneakers; an eBay grail giveaway and live sneaker auctions; opportunities to meet popular sneaker influencers; and more fun sneaker-style fun.

United vs. Union
Where: Audi Field | southwest DC
When: Saturday, 7:30pm
Admission: Tickets start at $29

Check out some soccer action on Saturday evening. DC United is hosting Phhiladelphia Union at home. As always, I recommend taking public transportation or parking in the Navy Yard neighborhood and walking to Audi Field from there. Plan for a pre-match bite — El Bebe, All Purpose Pizza, The Salt Line, and Dacha are conveniently located and my top recs for family-friendly spots to eat there. Purchase match tickets here.

Panda Birthday Party
Where: National Zoo | Woodley Park, DC
When: Sunday, 9am
Admission: Free

Giant panda, Xiao Qi Ji’s, is turning 2, and all are welcome to help celebrate his birthday! Visit the Asia Trail or tune into the Giant Panda Cam to see the Zoo’s youngest panda celebrate with a special ice-cake. Of course, plan to visit the rest of the animals, too. Check the Daily Animal Demos schedule help plan your outing — you canm eet a small mammal, watch a seal or sea lion training demo, hear a Gorilla keeper talk, and more! You can also just stroll around and pick your animal visits as you go.

Star Fest
Where: MLK Library | Penn Quarter, DC
When: Sunday, 1-5pm
Admission: Free

Celebrate Singing, Talking and Reading with DC Public Library as they celebrate the 50th Anniversary of the Martin Luther King Jr. Memorial Library! THe day will include: music by Latin-Grammy Award-winning group, 123 Andrés and Move with Mr. Prather’s Mr. Prather; talks and book signings by author-illustrator duo Anna Kang and Christopher Weyant and 123 Andrés; games and activities, including a petting zoo, face painting, and a bubbleologist; a birthday party for the Martin Luther King Jr. Memorial Library which opened on Aug. 21, 1972; Family story time and a special guest reader, The Cat in the Hat, Free books for your home library and fun giveaways; free boxed lunches (while supplies last); and more!

Pedestrian Zone
Where: 18th btwn Kalorama & Columbia NW | Adams Morgan, DC
When: Sunday, 12-10pm
Admission: Free

Walk your way through the streets of Adams Morgan — one street, anyway! The first 18th Street Pedestrian Zone is this Sunday and will occur on more Sundays throughout the remainder of the year. Meant to help the economic recovery of neighborhood businesses, keeping the the street free of vehicular traffic allows for more pedestrians, bicyclists, and people on scooters to have additional safe space to walk to their favorite cafe, shop for a unique gift, bike to dinner with friends, scooter to a hair or nail appointment, or just wander the tree-lined streets of Adams Morgan and enjoy the architecture. Take the fam down for a stroll, have lunch or dinner, stop for ice cream, and hit an area playground.

DC Way Clean-Up
Where: Around Tyler Elementary | Capitol Hill, DC
When: Saturday, 11:30am – 1:30pm
Admission: Free

A great family volunteering opportunity! Join DC Way for a clean-up of the area surrounding some of the fields they use. The soccer club’s two-year environmental project will be able to play a role in keeping DC clean, safe, and healthy. Volunteers of all ages welcome!

The Office Experience
Where: Woodies Building | Downtown DC
When: Throughout the weekend
Admission: $35-42

Take a tour of Dunder Mifflin…a re-created version of it, anyway. The recently opened The Office Experience immerses you in the world of Michael Scott, Jim & Pam, Dwight, Angela, and the rest of their colleagues and friends. Explore re-created sets loaded with authentic, fun details; recall so many funny moments from the show; play actual games and put yourself into iconic scenes for both awesome photo ops and great laughs. The kids and I got a sneak peek of it, and we all thought it was a hoot! If your crew are fans of The Office, they’ll dig it, too.

Mexican Geniuses: A Frida and Diego Immersive Experience
Where: 1235 W Street | Northeast DC
When: Throughout the weekend
Admission: $36/adult, $20/age 4-12, $25/ seniro, student, military

Another immersive experience featuring iconic artists opens in DC this weekend.  Mexican Geniuses explores the life and art of Frida Kahlo and Diego Rivera through a unique exhibition of light, color, and sound. This highly interactive exhibit offers a new way to explore art, engaging visitors of all ages, with digital elements that both show and tell their profound story. Over 300 projections and innovative video-mapping technology, along with Virtual Reality narration, will not only engage, but also educate visitors — even little ones.

Take Your Pick
Where: Around the DMV
When: Throughout the weekend
Admission: Varies by locale
Peaches, blackberries, apples, and more fruits and veggies are part of the pick-your-own options at local farms right now.  This post has info on some good places to go.  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.

Fun at Fairfax Parks
Where: Parks throughout Fairfax County, VA
When: Throughout the weekend
Admission: Varies by activity

The Fairfax County Park Authority hosts all kinds of events on weekends for guests of all ages. Enjoy Dairy Days, ice cream and butter making, at Sully Historic Site. Join an evening campfire at Burke Lake Park on Saturday. ee grinding demos at Colvin Run Mill. Learn about monarch butterflies at Hidden Oaks Nature Center.  Details and registration for these and more activities this weekend and beyond are available here.

Walks in the Woods
Where: Around the DMV
When: Throughout the weekend
Admission: Varies by locale

Hit the trail to enjoy some outdoor time with the fam! Check out the flora, tramp in places with scenic views, hike and explore history at interesting locales, and enjoy a day of active fun. This post, started in the early KFDC days and updated several times since, has a a bunch of recommendations for good walks in the woods with the kids.

Fantastagirl and the Math Monster
Where: Adventure Theatre | Glen Echo, MD
When: Through August 21
Tickets: $25 (see discount below)

It’s the final weekend to catch this show at Adventure Theatre…   Fantastagirl, a second-grade superhero who uses words to save the day, comes face to face with her worst nightmare: the Math Monster! When confronted with problems too big for words alone to solve, Fantastagirl must accept help from her friendly, furry, fraction-loving foe. While Fantastagirl and Math Monster use words and numbers to help her friends and scientist moms, something far more sinister than Math brews on the horizon. Use code CAMP22 for 50% off tickets!

Where: The Puppet Co.
When: Through August 28
Tickets: $15 (look for discount)

See a show on strings!  Rod puppets convey the classic tale of rags to riches, love at first sight (twice!), and getting what we all deserve. Don’t miss this fan favorite production, or your magical midnight curfew! Recommended for ages 5+. Run time is approximately 45 minutes.

Where: National Theatre | Downtown DC
When: Through September 4
Tickets: $65-150 (look for discount)

From Tudor Queens to Pop Princesses, the SIX wives of Henry VIII take the mic to remix five hundred years of historical heartbreak into an exuberant celebration of 21st century girl power! This new original musical is the global sensation that everyone is losing their head over.

Feeling Crabby?
Where: Eastern Shore, MD
When: Throughout the weekend
Admission: Depends on how much you order!

Savor summer awith one of the area’s best offerings: Blue crabs!  Enjoying the seasonal treat at a waterfront crab house is a bonus. Cantler’s in Annapolis is an institution, and Mike’s Crab House in Riva is popular with delicious crabs, gorgeous scenery, and a great outdoor waiting area if tables aren’t immediately available. Kentmorr on Kent Island has a great beach scene. And you can find even more recommendations for getting crabby in the Summer Guide.

DC, Inside & Out
Where: Around the DMV
When: Throughout the weekend
Admission: Varies by adventure

Want even more options for fun things to do with the kids around the area? If you’re looking for activities outdoors or inside, depending on the weather or simply your preference, these posts are chock full of evergreen pursuits:
The Best Places in the DC Area to Enjoy a Beautiful Day Outdoors with the Kids
The Great Indoors

* Smithsonian Magazine’s annual Museum Day, when it’s free to visit many museums around the country, is September 17 — and you can now reserve tickets for it!
* It’s tax-free time in Maryland through Saturday to help prep for back-to-school.
The Hirshhorn’s Art Cart and Maker Morning programs for kids are returning in September.
* A new food hall is coming to the The Station at Riverdale Park in PG County.  Le Fantome Food Hall, home to ten international culinary concepts, will open on August 22.
* Our family gives big thumbs-ups for Emmy Squared Pizza at The Yards!
* Thank you to my 13-year-old daughter for introducing me to the best (cheap) mascara.
*  A good Anthro Sale this weekend.
* Ha, we’ve all been there.


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