Monday – Take a hike and get a dose of history all at once at Roosevelt Island. The trails are easy for little legs to tramp, and you can explore the Memorial Plaza to learn about the legacy of President Theodore Roosevelt. The entrance to the park is located right off the GW Parkway, just past the Roosevelt Bridge, and accessible only from the northbound lanes. Hours are 6am – 10pm. Admission is free. Get a little more of the KFDC take on it in this post about local walks in the woods with kids.
Tuesday – Be among the first guests to join the National Museum of American History’s brand new weekly program for children. Museum ABCs is a fun, drop-in program for ages 3-6 and adult companions that introduces early learners to the museum collection through letter learning. In October, A is for Automobile: Read all about things that go, play with toy cars, and create a car craft. Sessions are 11am – 1pm and 2-4pm. Admission is free. If your child is too young or old for the series, go play in Wegman’s Wonderplace or explore the museum exhibits! (Update: Wegmans Wonderplace is closed on Tuesdays.)
Wednesday – Visit the animals, roam the peaceful grounds, and possibly join in a children’s program at Oxon Hill Farm. Hours are 8am – 4:30pm, and admission is free.
Thursday – Catch an interactive, bilingual show for children at Discovery Theater, located in the Ripley Center next to the Smithsonian Castle. Fábulas Fairy Tales is a fresh and fun introduction to Spanish through storytelling, math, music, and more. Showtime is 10:15am & 11:30am. Tickets are $3-8. (Note: This also takes place on Friday and October 12-13.)
Friday – Go apple picking! We recently visited (and loved) Waters Orchard in Germantown, and there are plenty of other area farms and orchards that welcome guests to gather their own fruit. This list of places to PYO has details on a bunch of them. And I always recommend calling ahead to be sure the pickings are good that day.
In the Natural History Museum’s Butterly Pavilion, where admission is free on Tuesdays
Monday – Visit the animals, roam the peaceful grounds, and possibly join in a children’s program at Oxon Hill Farm. Hours are 8am – 4:30pm, and admission is free.
Tuesday – Head to one of DC’s most tried and true for kids: The National Museum of Natural History. With exhibits to indulge all kinds of interests, you really can’t go wrong. Gawk at the beasts in the Hall of Mammals, hold live creatures in the Insect Zoo, learn about early humans, watch an IMAX movie, and be sure to take advantage of FREE entry on Tuesdays to the Butterfly Pavilion! (Tip: Get tickets when you arrive, since entry is timed, and yours may not begin right away.) Admission to the museum is free, but films are $9. The museum is open 10am – 5:30pm.
Wednesday – Let little ones burn some energy during an open gym session at Sport Bounce of Loundon, where a massive roomful of giant inflatables is a blast for kids. Open gym time is 10-11:30am, and admission is $10/ages 2 and up, $6/18-23 months. And while open gym occurs every weekday, the time varies, so be sure to check the schedule if you go a different day.
Thursday – Sign up for a class especially for preschoolers (ages 2-5) at Hillwood Estate, Museum, and Gardens. Explore a new mansion room or garden each week through make believe, art projects, and imaginative play. During the three-session Fanciful Heroes series, children might hunt for dragons, discover animals and fantastical creatures, or prepare for a royal ball while exploring the glamorous world of kings and queens. The series is $30 per child with one accompanying adult, or you can pay $12 per class ($10/members). Classes are 10:30-11:15am on September 11, 18, & 25.
Friday – Go apple picking! There are plenty of area farms that open their orchards to guests. This list of them was posted awhile back, but all of the locales are still recommended, and links and dates have been updated. I always recommend calling ahead to be sure the pickings are good that day.
Tuesday – Let the kids burn some energy and have a blast at the PG Sport & Learning Complex Gymnastics Center. It’s open play every Tuesday from 11:30am – 12:30pm, and they’ve got everything — trampolines, balance beams, soft mats and big tumbling areas, rope swings and foam pit, and more. Admission is $6/child.
Wednesday – Explore art through a story and hands-on activity at The Kreeger Museum. Children ages 3-5 (accompanied by an adult) can listen to a story and learn about works of art from the museum’s collection, then make a creation of their own. The program takes place every first and third Wednesday of the month from 10-11am and focuses on a new theme each time. The fee is $7, free for members. Class size is limited, so register by calling 202.338.3552 or email email@example.com. If this week books up, do some advance planning and register for a later date.
Thursday – Celebrate the new season at Ticonderoga Farm’s Fall Pumpkin Festival. Take a hayride, pick a pumpkin from the patch, play on the Noah’s Ark playground, enjoy apple cider and much more. Admission is $8.95 on weekdays ($14.95 on weekends and holidays when more attractions are open), hours are 9am – 6pm.
Friday – Skip in to the weekend with The Boogie Babes! They’re doubling the weekly musical fun with a show every Friday at the Atlas Performing Arts Center (they also host shows every Thursday at Eastern Market’s North Hall). Mr. Skip will have the tot crowd shaking their sillies out this week. The fun starts at 10:30am, admission is $5/child, free for siblings 6 months and under.