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Where to Play on the Weekdays: October 15-18

Taking in the autumn scenery at Brookside Gardens

Taking in the autumn scenery at Brookside Gardens



Tuesday – Visit the digs of first POTUS George Washington at Mount Vernon. Special tours are available throughout the day, or you can roam the grounds on your own. The estate and gardens are open daily 9am – 5pm. Admission is $17/adult, $8/ages 6-11, free for children 5 and under.

Wednesday – Get a nature fix, indoors and out, at Long Branch Nature Center. Peek inside terrariums for a close look at snakes, turtles, frogs, and toads, and see fish swim in a small indoor pond. If weather permits, continue your viewing outdoors at the larger pond and hike the nearby trails. Hours are 10am – 5pm (Tuesday – Saturday, 1-5pm Sunday), and admission is free.

Thursday – Wander around the beautiful grounds, play in the newly renovated Children’s Garden, and enjoy the start of fall foliage at Brookside Gardens in Wheaton, Md. The park is open sunrise to sunset, the Visitor Center 9am – 5pm. The conservatories are closed right now as they get ready for new exhibits. Admission is free.

Friday – Catch a performance of From Here to There at the Atlas Performing Arts Center. The show for the youngest theatre-goers is all about the joy of building bridges. (And knocking them down, too!) A free-play session at the end of the performance invites the children to explore the show’s props. Showtime is 10am .Tickets are $8. (If you can’t make it Friday, see it another day during its October 16-21 run.)

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The Autumn 2013 Line-Up of Live Entertainment

Catch Lulu and the Brontosaurus at Imagination Stage this fall

Catch Lulu and the Brontosaurus at Imagination Stage this fall



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As the weather starts to cool down, local stages will be heating up with lots of great entertainment for families. Here’s where you can find it all, listed in order of start date, with most descriptions coming straight from the theaters.

Potted Potter
Where: Sidney Harmon Hall
When: September 5 – 15
Tickets: Start at $45

Potted Potter takes on the ultimate challenge of condensing all seven Harry Potter books (and a real life game of Quidditch) into seventy hilarious minutes. This fantastically funny show features all your favorite characters, a special appearance from a fire-breathing dragon, endless costumes, brilliant songs, ridiculous props and a generous helping of Hogwarts magic! Even if you don’t know the difference between a Horcrux and a Hufflepuff, Potted Potter will make you roar with laughter. This brilliant family entertainment is perfect for ages 6 to Dumbledore (who is very old indeed).

Tiny Tots
Where: The Puppet Co.
When: Most Wednesdays, Saturdays, & Sundays at 10am
Tickets: $5

The series presents puppet shows designed for the youngest theater patrons (ages 0-4). They are shorter, the lights stay on, and the doors stay open. They have an arsenal of shows that they switch up every performance, so check the schedule to see what’s playing when you plan to go.

Tot Rock
Where: Jammin’ Java
When: Ongoing
Tickets: $5/weekdays, $10/weekends

Tot Rock is Jammin’ Java’s super-popular kids music concert series, providing wholesome family entertainment at one of the DC Metro area’s finest music clubs. Local acts perform every Thursday and Friday, and touring performers drop by on many weekends. Check the calendar often to see when your favorite act is performing, and for other calendar updates.

The Lord of the Rings
Where: Wolf Trap
When: September 6-7, 7:30pm
Tickets: $25

See the shire in a new light at this multimedia event featuring the epic film on huge screens in-house and on the lawn with Howard Shore’s award-winning score performed live on stage. A live orchestra and choir will accompany the on stage and on screen performances.

Jim West’s Dinosaurs
Where: Publick Playhouse
When: September 12, 9:30 am & 11:30 am
Tickets: $4

Jim West’s giant puppets take small fry on a happy prehistoric musical journey through a land full of friendly dinosaurs. 
Recommended for grades pre-K-2.
Publick Playhouse is located at 5445 Landover Rd. in Cheverly, Md. arts.pgparks.com

Uno, dos, tres…con ANDRES!
Where: Discovery Theatre
When: September 18-19, 10am & 11:15am
Tickets: $3-8

Counting has never been more fun in English and Spanish. Play and dance with Andrés Salguero to songs familiar and new as he uses sing-alongs and movement to share Spanish words and create plenty of bilingual fun. ¡A bailar, niños! Recommended for ages 2-6.

Goodnight Moon
Where: Adventure Theatre
When: September 20 – October 27
Tickets: $19

In the Great Green Room, a Little Old Lady whispers “Hush”, in vain! The humorous antics of a very nocturnal bunny, his magical room, dancing bears, and a red balloon brings to life the most iconic children’s books of all time. Will bunny ever get to sleep? Based on the book by Margaret Wise Brown. Recommended for all ages. *Personal note: This was one of the first shows I took Owen to see when he was still a wee one, and it was the perfect introduction to the theatre world.

Winnie the Pooh!
Where: Workhouse Arts Center
When: Through September 29
Tickets: $12 adults; $8 children under 12 years old

Join Pooh, Piglet and all the rest for an adventurous afternoon in the Hundred Acre Wood! The forest is in a worry when two mysterious new neighbors, Kanga and Roo, move in. On top of that, Eeyore has lost his tail again! Will Piglet come to the rescue? Recommended for all ages. Running time 75 minutes with one intermission. Concessions available before the performance and at intermission.

Lulu & the Brontosaurus
Where: Imagination Stage
When: September 25 – October 27
Tickets: $12-22

Lulu and the Brontosaurus is the story of a feisty young girl who wants nothing but a brontosaurus for her birthday. When Mom and Dad draw the line at the impracticality of a pet dinosaur, Lulu sets off into the forest to find the large reptile all by herself. When she meets Mr. B, it’s clear that this brontosaurus is not interested in being her pet­­—he wants Lulu to be his pet instead! She has certainly met her match, and nothing turns out quite the way she expects.

Big Apple Circus
Where: Dulles Town Center
When: September 26 – October 14
Tickets: Start at $20

(Read about our experience at the big Apple Circus last year.) It’s the vivacity! It’s the velocity! It’s the LUMINOCITY — the All–New Show from the Big Apple Circus! Venture within the hubbub at the heart of Gotham, where the restless tide of humanity flows through canyons of skyscrapers and shoals of billboards: The dog-walker, whose rowdy pups perform amazing tricks! Businesswomen who arrange to meet, soaring high above on a double trapeze! The rube, a clown-prince among peers, celebrating the mirth of life! Revelry at New Year’s Eve, with teeter-board acrobats flying like fireworks! and a chic couple of wire-walkers suspended mid-air for the event! The humble repairman, climbing the ladder of his imagination! The mounted policewoman, directing a cavalcade of steeds! The flimflam man with his quicksilver moves! The food cart vendor, juggling his produce! Construction workers assembling athletic poses of incredible strength! The celebrated Big Apple Circus Band provides the lively musical soundtrack, and Ringmaster, John Kennedy Kane, will conduct your tour through this luminous cityscape. Run away and join the Big Apple Circus this season for a dazzling, unforgettable spectacle of wonder, merriment and joy!

Teacher from the Black Lagoon
Where: Publick Playhouse
When: October 2, 10:15am & 12pm
Tickets: $6

TheatreWorks USA presents a wonderful new musical revue based on favorite contemporary children’s books. Along with the title work, the audience will meet big stinky “Dogzilla”, “Grumpy Bird”, the “I Want My Hat Back” bear, “Lily’s Purple Plastic Purse”, and the “The Grasshopper and the Ant.”
Recommended for grades K-4.

Steamystery
Where: Studio Theatre, Katzen Arts Center
When: October 3-6
Admission: $15 adults, $10/AU community & children under 18,

What is STEAM? Curious Cat and her friends are about to find out. Through song, dance, poetry, and audience participation, Curious Cat discovers the mysteries and delights in STEAM (Science, Technology, Engineering, Arts, and Math). Recommended for ages 6 and up.

NSO Teddy Bear Concert: Teddy & Ten Hats
Where: Kennedy Center
When: October 5-6
Tickets: $20

Back by popular demand! Little children love dress-up as much as these playful musicians spinning a story about a teddy bear whose zany collection of hats represents a wide variety of music, from Haydn to Sousa and beyond. This program actively engages children as listeners in an atmosphere of fun. Kids can bring their favorite stuffed animal to these interactive programs and have their teddy bear friend join in all the fun! Lasting approximately 45 minutes, they’re perfect for even the youngest music lovers in your family. Go early for “Musical Playtime” – starting 45 minutes before each Teddy Bear Concert, enjoy music and movement activities especially designed for small children. Recommended for ages 3 to 5.

Mandy the Clown
Where: Publick Playhouse
When: October 10, 9:30am & 11:30am
Tickets: $4

Perfecting the art of goofiness, Mandy is a trained circus artist and kid-friendly clown who juggles, stilt walks, does magic and keeps children fascinated and having fun. Recommended for grades pre-K-2.

Capitol City Symphony Young Artist Concerto Concert
Where: Atlas Performing Arts Center
When: October 13
Tickets: Free for 16 and under

Every season, CCS presents at least one Young Artist concerto concert. This opening concert will include two young winners of the Levine School Concerto Competition: 11-year-old Avery Lin Gagliano playing the First Movement of Mozart’s Piano Concerto No. 20; and 14-year-old Yukino Takehara playing the First Movement of Mendelssohn’s Violin Concerto.

From Here to There
Where: Atlas Performing Arts Center
When: October 16-21
Tickets: $8

A delightful show for the youngest theatre-goers all about the joy building bridges. (And knocking them down too!) Join two playful characters that climb over, craw under, and even hide behind the bridges they build, using rhythm, rhyme and imagination! A free-play session at the end of the performance invites the children to explore the show’s props. Presented by Imagination Stage collaboration with England’s award-winning Tell Tale Hearts Theatre Company.

Peter & the Wolf
Where: The Puppet Co.
When: October 17 – November 22
Tickets: $10

Peter and the Wolf, performed by TPC co-founder Christopher Piper, is based on Prokofiev’s popular tale of good versus evil, staged with half life-size marionettes. An introduction to the instruments in the orchestra, and to the themes in the work, precedes this story of Peter’s, and his animal friends’, attempts to capture wily “Old Lupus.” Recommended for pre-K – grade 6.

Balé Folclólrico da Bahia
Where: Publick Playhouse
When: October 17, 12pm
Tickets: $20

Brazil’s incredible national dance company takes the audience on an explosive and exhilarating trip to the heart of Brazil, for an hour-long immersion into the colorful history and culture of our Latin American neighbor. Experience the excitement of one of the major folk dance companies in the world.
Recommended for all ages
.

The Spooky Magic of Joe Romano
Where: BlackRock Center for the Arts
When: October 19, 1pm
Tickets: $14

Magician Joe Romano provides the tricks, and it will be a treat for all! Be amazed at the mind-boggling illusions that this expert entertainer performs. Joe will make a “haunted table” float in the air, conjure a creepy, crawly creature, turn one lucky child into Harry Potter and more! Enjoyed by ages 4+. Pre-show party, with snacks and arts activities, starts at 12pm.

Skippyjon Jones
Where: Publick Playhouse
When: October 25, 10:15am &12pm
Tickets: $6

The popular storybook kitten with the big ears is presented in a musical theatre version, with Skippyjon transforming into Skippito Friskito, the greatest Chihuahua sword fighter of old Mexico! But when the local canines are terrorized by a huge bee, will Skippyjon turn into a ‘fraidy-cat or will he still be top dog? 
Recommended for grades K-4.

NSO Family Concert: Halloween Spooktacular: The Sequel
Where: Kennedy Center
When: October 27
Tickets: $15-18

When is it ever cool to “boo” the orchestra? On Halloween, of course! But watch out, because at this frightfully fun follow-up to the NSO’s popular Halloween Spooktacular program, ghoulishly attired musicians might “BOO” you from behind their instruments in return! Don your spookiest ‘ween wear and come early for pre-concert trick-or-treating plus a special Haunted Hall Musical Instrument “Petting Zoo.” Then take your seats for a “spirited” performance as an incognito Ankush Kumar Bahl conducts a new round of goosebump-inducing favorites including the Toccata and Fugue in D minor–J.S. Bach’s most famous organ piece–featuring the Concert Hall’s new Rubenstein Family Organ, the “Ritual Fire Dance” from Manuel de Falla’s ballet score El amor brujo (“Love, the Magician”), “Anitra’s Dance” from Edvard Grieg’s music for the play Peer Gynt, and a selection from John Williams’s score for the Harry Potter films. Recommended for ages 5 and up.

Splat the Cat
Where: Publick Playhouse
When: October 29, 10:15am & 12pm
Tickets: $6

Windwood Theatricals presents a great new musical adventure based on the popular book. It’s Splat’s first day of school and, afraid that he won’t make new friends, he brings his pet mouse for company. When Seymour the mouse escapes from his hiding place in Splat’s lunchbox, the school full of cats goes wild, until the teacher calms things down and everyone learns some important lessons. Recommended for grades K-5.

Tot Rock: Jammin’ at the Smithsonian presents Joanie’s Halloween Party
Where: Discovery Theater
When: October 31 – November 1, 10am & 11:15am
Tickets: $3-8

There’s no reason to scare up an excuse to dance like crazy when the energetic Brooklyn-based, kindie-rock band Joanie Leeds and The Nightlights make their Halloween debut at Discovery Theater. Leeds brings songs from her latest album, Bandwagon, along with other hits and kid-friendly Halloween tunes. The band will be in costume—and families can be, too! Recommended for ages 2-6.

Cinderella
Where: Publick Playhouse
When: November 1, 10:15am & 12pm
Tickets: $6

American Family Theatre’s Broadway for Kids production of Cinderella is an enchanting musical of the classic tale, where goodness prevails and the mistreated child finds lasting happiness.
Recommended for grades pre K-5


Man of the House
Where: Kennedy Center
When: November 2-3
Tickets: $20

In this world premiere, master storyteller David Gonzalez returns with a brand-new, semi-autobiographical solo show about Pablito, a young boy of Cuban/Puerto Rican heritage who searches for his long-lost father while spending a summer in Miami. Recommended for ages 9 and up.

The Young Spectaculars and the Front Yard Adventure
Where: Atlas Performing Arts Center
When: November 6-11
Tickets: $8

Meet brother and sister Andrew and Emma – aka The Young Spectaculars! Energized by their super-powered imaginations, but stuck creating their own adventures near the front porch, they save a cat and a picnic lunch before stumbling upon more than they bargained for. Join the Young Spectaculars for this show intended for the little hero inside all of us.

Aesop’s Fables
Where: Publick Playhouse
When: November 7, 9:30am & 11:30am
Tickets: $4

Jim West returns with a stage full of puppets presenting Aesop’s delightful tales of wit and wisdom, including “The Tortoise and the Hare”, “The Fox and the Grapes” and more, including Aesop himself and his dog Moral, dancing to beautiful music. Recommended for grades pre-K-2.

The Lion, the Witch and the Wardrobe
Where: Thomas Jefferson Community Theater
When: November 8-17
Tickets: $12/adult, $10/child

When four children stumble upon an old wardrobe, little do they know they would enter the magical world of Narnia. Full of mystical creatures, talking animals and great escapes, this action-packed story by C.S. Lewis shares the triumph of good over evil. The children help Aslan, the great lion and ruler of Narnia, battle the White Witch who wishes to put an end to Aslan’s reign. Join the adventure as four brave kids, one great lion, and an entire kingdom fight for what is right. Recommended for ages 4 and up.

Dr. Dolittle
Where: Northern Virginia Players/Family Worship Center
When: November 8, 9, 15, 16
Tickets:

The classic tale of kindness to animals comes to life in the stage adaption of the original Doctor Dolittle! Animal kindnesses will trot, crawl and fly its way onto the stage and into your hearts in DOCTOR DOLITTLE JR. With a cast of 54, all of the characters we’ve come to love through the stories of Hugh Lofting and the magical movie musical are given new life in the JUST released stage version. The musical tells the classic tale of a wacky but kind Doctor who can talk to animals. The show takes the audience on a journey from the small English village of Puddleby-in-the-Marsh to the far corners of the world in search for the Great Pink Sea Snail–the oldest and wisest of the creatures on earth.

Tot Rock: Jammin’ at the Smithsonian presents Rolie Polie Guacamole
Where: Discovery Theather
When: November 14-15, 10am & 11:15am
Tickets: $3-8

Can you get any hipper than a kindie-rock band from Brooklyn? Rolie Polie Guacamole’s high-energy, interactive shows are a mix of funk, rock, and folk sounds mashed into original tunes about natural living, eating healthy, and staying active. Their latest album, Houses of the Moly, brought them a Parents’ Choice Silver Award. Recommended for ages 2-6.

Capitol City Symphony Family Concert
Where: Atlas Performing Arts Center
When: November 17, 2:30pm & 4:30pm
Tickets: Free for 16 and under

There will be two performances of the popular Family Concert. CCS is very excited to announce a special collaboration with Fourth Wall Ensemble, a hybrid arts ensemble in which musicians are also dancers and actors. The orchestra’s youngest audience members particularly enjoy the instrument petting zoo and interactive performance, as well as a special program book just for the younger set.
 
Junie B. Jones – Jingle Bells, Batman Smells
Where: Publick Playhouse
When: November 14, 10:15am & 12pm
Tickets: $6

Holiday time is approaching, and the first graders in Room One are creating the perfect party. But when Junie B. draws the name of her arch nemesis for a Secret Santa Gift, she has to decide whether to give Tattletale May what she deserves….or not.
Recommended for grades K-5.
 
The Bully Free Zone with Queen Nur
Where: Publick Playhouse
When: November 19, 10:15 am & 12
Tickets: $6

Folk tales, fables and hip hop take center stage in Queen Nur’s interactive and inspiring performance about accepting others’ differences. A professional storyteller, Queen Nur is also a recognized expert in adolescent psychology and dispute resolution. Her warm and friendly stage presence captures the attention and wins the involvement of young audiences.
 Recommended for all ages.


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Where to Play on the Weekdays: April 29 – May 3

A winter hike at Roosevelt Island...it's even prettier in the spring.

A winter hike at Roosevelt Island…it’s even prettier in the spring.



Monday – Enjoy some interactive musical fun as “¡Uno, Dos, Tres con Andrés!” comes to the Northwest One Library. The local children’s entertainer will be playing at public libraries several times this week (see his website for details). Showtime on Monday is 10:30am, admission is free. Northwest One Library is located at 155 L Street NW.

Tuesday – Get a dose of nature and history in one fell swoop at Roosevelt Island. Hike the easy trails, look out for wildlife, and 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. It’s accessible only from the northbound lanes. If weather doesn’t permit, find an alternative activity here.

Wednesday – See a performance of From Here to There at the Atlas Performing Arts Center. The show tops off the 2012/2013 season of the Atlas’ Theatre for the Very Young series. Showtime is 10:30am, tickets are $8. If you can’t make it Wednesday, catch it another time during its run from April 30 – May 5.

Thursday – Take the kids to play amid the lovely wooded setting of Cabin John Regional Park. They can climb, swing, jump, slide, and run on the sprawling Adventure Playland. Unfortunately, the Miniature Train is only open on weekends right now, but the playground alone has plenty to keep little ones thoroughly entertained for a good while. Bring along food for a picnic — there are several tables to eat on, or you can spread out a blanket in a nearby grassy area.

Friday – Bounce on over to Joyful Jumps in Bowie, Md. The indoor play center offers Open Play everyday, just drop in anytime for a two-hour session of amusement on their bouncing inflatables, slides, and obstacle courses. Admission is $8.50/ages 17 mos. – 16 years. Hours are 10am – 9pm on Fridays (10am-7pm Monday – Thursday).

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Theatre for the Very Young at The Atlas

Drumming with Dishes, the first production in the Atlas' "Theatre for the Very Young" series

 

Last fall, the Atlas Performing Arts Center launched “Theatre for the Very Young,” a presenting series specifically geared toward children ages 1 – 5.  Featuring performances from Washington-based theatre companies and artists experienced in making quality theatre accessible to the youngest audiences, the Atlas aims to engage children in the magic of theatre through song, simple stories, movement and imagination. Performances are interactive, presenting theatre in a playful environment that promotes learning and cognitive development.

Big applause for the show!

I posted about the first offering in the series, Drumming with Dishes, a whimsical, non-verbal, interactive adventure from Arts on the Horizon.  I took Sasha to see the show about celebrating friendship and finding new ways to make music in the kitchen, and we both found it delightful (okay, she didn’t use that exact word, but that’s how I would describe her reaction). The setting was cozy and inviting, the actors performed on a level that children could comprehend, and the music was serene but captivating.

Needless to say, we’re really looking forward to another production by Arts on the Horizon coming to the Atlas later this month as the next installment in the Theatre for the Very Young Series.  Out of the Box uses music, sounds, and gentle interaction to follow a young girl as she discovers all the possibilities in box can hold.  The show will run March 20-25, and tickets are $8. You can win a pair of tickets to see the show – see below for details on how to enter.

Beyond that, there will be one more production in the series this season.  Imagination Stage will present Aquarium April 16-22. Young audiences will enter a world where giant jellyfish fly through the air, sheep graze in the grass, and lemons create the sun in a “let’s pretend” sky. Mild music, beautiful puppets, and imaginative props welcome both children and adults into the magical, interactive realm. Tickets for the show are also $8.

Tickets for all upcoming performances can be purchased online through the Atlas website or at the Box Office.  The Atlas Performing Arts Center is located at 1333 H Street NE.

GIVEAWAY: Want a chance to win a pair of tickets to see Out of the Box at the Atlas?  Simple leave a comment on this post. To be eligible, you must like Atlas Performing Arts Center on Facebook and KidFriendly DC on Facebook (let me know that you did). A winner will be drawn at random at the end of this week.  Good luck!

 

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Filed under Babies, DC, Gradeschoolers, Live Entertainment, Music, Preschoolers, Spring, Theatre, Toddlers, Weekdays, Weekend