The Weekend Round-Up:
September 2-5


Happy Long Weekend!

Quick links to all kinds of ideas for local activities:
* Best Outdoors in the DC Area
Off-the-Beaten-Path Museums
* The Great Indoors
* Local Hikes with Kids
* Bike Rides
* Stunning Spaces
* Peaceful Places
* Baltimore with Kids

Season Finales
Where: Around the DMV
When: Throughout the weekend
Admission: Varies by activity

This weekend is the last for some of the pursuits we’ve been enjoying all summer long — outdoor swimming pools and special museum programs among them. If you’re hoping to explore The Playhouse at the Building Museum, see the fairy houses at Annmarie Sculpture Garden, enjoy that last Cinematery of the summer, or jump in at an outdoor public pool, then get on it this weekend! For details on these and other seasonal activities that will continue for a few more weeks, check out the 2022 Summer Guide, which has details on all of these diversions, plus many more.

National Book Festival
Where: Washington Convention Center | Mt Vernon, DC
When: Saturday, 9am – 8pm
Admission: Free

Book enthusiasts young and old come from all over for the day of reading-related activities. Works by more than 100 authors, poets, and illustrators will be showcased, and the creators themselves will be at the Walter E. Washington Convention Center for special appearances. It’s always a wonderful event, and I highly recommend going if you can.   It’s a good idea to plan ahead if there are any authors you really want to see, so take a look at the complete list of them as well as the schedule — most presentations are first come-first served, and people do line up early to get seats.

Virginia Scottish Games
Where: The Plains, VA
When: Saturday & Sunday, 9am – 9pm
Admission: $20-30/age 12+, $5/ages 5-12, free/under 5

Celebrate Scottish heritage at this annual fair featuring everything from music and dance to sports and games to food and cars, even Scottish dogs. Much of it will be showcased through competition, but there is plenty that all visitors can partake in, too. Two-day adult passes are available for $30.

Day Trippin’
Where: Around the DC area (and a bit beyond)
When: Throughout the weekend
Admission: Varies by adventure

The long weekend is a great time to head a little further out and enjoy a day trip. Some ideas for where to go:
* Zip up to Baltimore, where there are so many great attractions for families.
* See the spectacular underground world of Luray Caverns.
* Enjoy hiking and history at Harpers Ferry.
* Go to Calvert County for art adventures at Annmarie Sculpture Garden, a beach day at Calvert Cliffs State Park, maritime explorations at the Calvert Marine Museum, or even a pontoon boat excursion from Solomons Island.

Hike & Hang
Where: Around the DC Area
When: Throughout the Weekend
Admission: Varies by place

Sometimes it’s better to plan a hike around the apres hike destination, places where you can relax and enjoy food and drinks, the kids can play, and the scenery adds to the enjoyment. A few awesome combos for that, where you can hike and hang: Patuxent River State Park and Waredaca Brewery, Sky Meadows State Park and Barrel Oak Winery; Sugarloaf Mountain and The Comus Inn or Sugarloaf Mountain Vineyard; Great Falls (MD side) and The Old Angler’s Inn; Patapsco Valley State Park and the Guinness Brewery.

National Cinema Day
Where: Movie theaters around the DC area
When: Saturday
Admission: $3

Saturday is National Cinema Day, and many theaters are celebrating with $3 tickets just for the day. See what’s playing and reserve your tickets before they sell out.

Merriment Galore
Where: Maryland Renaissance Festival | Crownsville, MD
When: Saturday, Sunday, & Monday
Admission: $24/adults, $21/seniors, $12/7-15, free/6 & under

Take a glorious day trip back to medieval times at Ren Fest, where there is something for everyone. Besides the amazing variety of entertainment — jousting matches, cheeky comedy shows, juggling acts, Celtic music, and much more — walking among knights, maidens, pirates, and villagers in a 16th-century village as you chomp on turkey legs and down cups of mead is an interesting little jaunt back in time that any age can enjoy.

Labor Day Weekend Festivities
Where: Glen Echo Park | Glen Echo, MD
When: Saturday, Sunday, & Monday
Admission: Free

It’s an exciting weekend at Glen Echo. Along with the annual Labor Day Art Show throughout the weekend with all kinds of art to check out. On Sunday and Monday, you can also enjoy the Social Dance Showcase, with live music and a variety of different dance styles. There will be short beginner lessons at the start of each dance, and all dances are open to people of all skill level. No partner required.

DC Festival of Magic
Where: Capital Hilton | Dupont Circle, DC
When: Friday, Saturday, Sunday
Admission: Varies by show
Several local magicians will be performing at the Capital Hilton, with shows that promise to make you laugh, clap, and gasp with wonder. There will be performances throughout the weekend, including a family show and a family magic class on Sunday. Visit the website for details and to see what else you can enjoy.

How ‘Bout Them Apples?
Where: Farms & orchards around the DC area
When: Throughout the weekend
Admission: Varies by locale

The apple picking season is underway! Several farms in the area have opened their orchards for guests to start gathering. This list of area farms and orchards offering pick-your-own opportunities has details on where you can harvest them. I always recommend calling ahead to be sure the fruits are available the day you plan to go.

DC Jazz Fest
Where: Venues around DC
When: Through September 4
Tickets: Varies by performance

The annual DC Jazz Fest is back with in-person performances over this long weekend. All shows will. Shows are taking place at several venues around DC, including The Wharf (where general admission is free), Arena Stage, U Street, and more. See the website for the schedule of shows.

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

Check out some soccer action on Saturday evening. DC United are hosting the Colorado Rapids 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.

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 18th Street Pedestrian Zone is on again this Sunday, keeping the street free of vehicular traffic, so more pedestrians, bicyclists, and people on scooters have mroe 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!

UniverSoul Circus
Where: National Harbor | Oxon Hill, MD
When: Through Monday
Admission: $27.50+ (look for discount)

Now running!  The world-class, live entertainment attraction is back at National Harbor .  The production celebrates the unique and familiar aspects of global cultures and ethnicities, blending circus arts, theater, and music — a fresh, cool, and hip approach to live family entertainment!

Off the Beaten Museum Path
Where: Around DC
When: Throughout the weekend
Admission: Varies by museum

If you don’t veer from the well trodden path of the National Mall now and then, you could miss out on some amazing museum exhibits and experiences. Check out this round-up of some these places in DC that may not be on your museum radar — but should be. They’ll be great places to stay cool, too!

Labor Day Concert at the Capitol
Where: U.S. Capitol Building West Lawn | Capitol Hill, DC
When: Sunday, 8pm
Admission: Free

The National Symphony Orchestra annual Labor Day concert returns to the West Lawn of the US Capitol! Principal Pops Conductor Steven Reineke will lead the orchestra in music by Aaron Copland, John Williams, new Kennedy Center Composer-in-Residence Carlos Simon, and others. Gates open to the public at 3pm, and if the show is at 8pm is too late, you can catch the open dress rehearsal at 3:30pm.

Labor Day Parades
Where: Around the DC Area
When: Monday
Admission: Free

For some holiday pageantry on Monday, head to Maryland — both Gaithersburg and Kensington celebrate with Labor Day parades. The 80+ year tradition in Gaithersburg includes fire engines, high school marching bands, giant balloons, horses, and clowns in its procession through Olde Towne. Kensington is hosting its Annual Labor Day Parade and Festival. Dance troupes, equestrian groups, fire trucks, circus performers will be part of the show making its way through town starting at 10am. The fun will continue afterward at a festival on Antique Row with live music, food vendors, crafts, and more.

Ride On
Where: Around the DC area
When: Throughout the weekend
Admission: Free

There’s a quick link to bike routes above, but this is a stronger recommendation to get out for a family ride. And you’ve got your pick of good ones around the area. Take in the summer scenery, get some exercise, and enjoy some QT together. This post has a bunch of pedal-worthy recs, with something for riders of all levels, and this route is particularly ideal with kids.

Where: Around the area
When: Throughout the weekend
Admission: Free

Add some extra adventure to a bike ride and go mountain biking. There are several MTB trails to ride around the area, a few miles even right here in the District at Fort Dupont Park in Anacostia — a good place for newer mountain bikers. Cosco Regional Park in PG County and Schaffer Farms in Gaithersburg are also great for those just starting. And for even more recs, the post about biking around the DC area includes a list of places to hit the mountain biking trails (scroll down).  [Note: This activity is better for older kids with more experience riding.]

Maryland State Fair
Where: Timonium Fairgrounds | Timonium-Lutherville, MD
When: Throughout the weekend
Admission: $5-10 (rides, games, etc. are extra)

If you missed the recent local county fairs or want to enjoy even more rides, games, live entertainment, 4-H exhibits, and carnival fun, head north to the Maryland State Fair.  You can even see some  thoroughbred horse racing.  The Fair continues this weekend and September 8-11.

Weather or Not
Where: Around the DMV
When: Throughout the weekend
Admission: Varies by activity

It looks like a mix of sun, rain, and clouds this weekend. So, if you want to plan your activities as the weather plays out, keep these two posts bookmarked:
The Great Indoors
The Best Places in the DC Area to Enjoy a Beautiful Day Outdoors with the Kids

* DC Theatre Week is coming up September 22 – October 9! During this time, there is special pricing on tickets to shows at dozens of theatres around the area — score some of them here.
* DC Spray Parks no longer close after Labor Day — they’ll remain open through September 30.
* Imagination Stage’s fall classes for kids ages 1-18 start up in a couple of weeks!
* Yummy ideas for a Labor Day menu.
* Looking forward to starting this series over the weekend.
* Also can’t wait for the new episode of this brilliant new show.
* Is it too late in the season for new sandals?
* The comments of this blog post are filled with great book recs!
* Happy September 💜


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