Tag Archives: DC Holiday Activities

The Weekend Round-Up:
February 16-19

 

Happy Long Weekend!

Go-to posts packed with ideas to enjoy the long weekend:
* Best Outdoors in the DC Area
* Local Hikes with Kids
* The Great Indoors
* Off-the-Beaten-Path Museums
* Active Pursuits Inside
* Kid-Friendly Eats
* Ice Skating
* Baltimore with Kids
* Peaceful Places

Lincoln Memorial Tour
Where: Memorials on the National Mall
When: Throughout the weekend
Admission: Free

An activity for Presidents’ Day weekend: Tour the Lincoln Memorial. Every Saturday and Sunday at 1pm, you can explore the art and history of the structure with a National Park Service ranger. And on Monday at 11am and 2pm, there will be a special tour called “O Cpatin! My Captain!” with Ranger Tim to learn about Abraham Lincoln, the man, the monument, and his legacy. Of course, you can go anytime and explore on your own.

Hang Out at George’s Place
Where: Mount Vernon Estate | Mount Vernon, VA
When: Throughout the Weekend
Admission: $26/adult, $13/age 6-11, free/5 & under 

What better place to visit over Presidents’ Day weekend than our first POTUS’ former home?  While Mount Vernon is neat to explore anytime, George’s 292nd birthday is a good occasion to go.  Tour the expansive grounds with original buildings, the mansion where he lived, and the Education Center full of interesting exhibits about Washington’s life and colonial times.  Enjoy the sunny weather outside as you take in views of the Potomac River from the backyard.  To celebrate the holiday, admission is free on Monday, and tickets will be distributed on-site upon arrival (though limited).  And FYI: There is also free admission on Thursday, February 22, (Washington’s actual bday), if you can swing a weekday visit. Read more about Mount Vernon here.

Presidential Family Fun Day
Where: National Portrait Gallery | Penn Quarter, DC
When: Saturday, 11:30am – 3pm
Admission: Free

Celebrate Presidents’ Day at the Portrait Gallery’s annual festival for all ages! Discover more about presidents during guided tours of the “America’s Presidents” exhibit and story times, or enjoy art-making and writing activities — there’s something for everyone!

Blossom to Beverage: The Story of Chocolate
Where: American Indian Museum | National Mall, DC
When: Saturday & Sunday, 10:30am – 5pm
Admission: Free

The story of chocolate begins with a small cacao tree rooted deep in the history of Mesoamerican culture. Learn the symbolism and history of this beloved and storied ingredient through art making and other hands-on activities at the National Museum of the American Indian. Create your own cacao-inspired codex book, do some cacao-inspired mural painting, learn about the process of harvesting and turning cacao beans into chocolate, watch artist demos, and more!

Shaun the Sheep
Where: National Children’s Museum | Downtown DC
When: Throughout the weekend
Admission: $18.95

Bring kiddos to experience the newest visiting exhibit at the National Children’s Museum. They can share in the antics of Shaun the Sheep and his pals through hands-on play in the interactive exhibit (recommended for learners age 3-9), which builds problem-solving and motor skills while playfully exploring technology and literacy. Plan to check out the permanent exhibits, too — read all about them here.

Great Backyard Bird Count
Where: Outdoors around the DC Area (or anywhere)
When: Through Monday
Admission: Depends on where you go

Each February, for four days, the world comes together for the love of birds. Over these days, people are invited to spend time in their favorite places watching and counting as many birds as they can find and report them to the Great Backyard Bird Count. The observations help scientists better understand global bird populations before one of their annual migrations. Participating is easy — learn more about it here.

Cinderella: A Salsa Fairytale
Where: Imagination Stage | Bethesda, MD
When: Saturday, 1pm | Sunday, 1pm & 4pm
Tickets: $12+
A bilingual Cinderella with a twist that kids will love! What will happen to Cinderella at the ball … game? That’s the surprising question in this contemporary Latin-American Cinderella musical that weaves subtle lessons on empathy, sportsmanship, and respect into an exciting, high-stakes story. An Imagination Stage original that broke new ground in bilingual children’s theatre. Recommended for ages 5+.

Junie B. Jones, The Musical
Where: Adventure Theatre | Glen Echo, MD
When: Fri, 7pm  | Sat & Sun, 11am & 2pm
Tickets: $25

It is Junie B.’s first day of first grade, and a lot of things have changed for her: Junie’s friend, Lucille, does not want to be her best pal anymore and, on the bus, Junie B. makes friends with Herb, the new kid at school. Also, Junie has trouble reading the blackboard and her teacher, Mr. Scary, thinks she may need glasses. Throw in a friendly cafeteria lady, a kickball tournament and a “Top-Secret Personal Beeswax Journal,” and first grade has never been more exciting. Featuring a tremendously loveable character and fun-filled songs, Junie B. Jones will capture your audience members’ hearts just as the books captivated an entire generation of students.

Hansel & Gretel
Where: The Puppet Co.
When: Fri, 10:30am  | Sat & Sun, 11:30am & 1pm
Tickets: $15

Join the Puppet Co. this classic German fairy tale about two kids who get lost in the woods and encounter a witch. Written by Len, Patricia, and Chrisopher Piper, this version of Hansel and Gretel is over 50 years old. Our musical tale, performed using marionettes, is sure to charm you and your little ones. Recommended for ages 4+. Run time approximately 45 minutes.

Orchids, Galore!
Where: Kogod Courtyard | Penn Quarter DC
When: Through April 28
Admission: Free

Smithsonian Gardens and the US Botanic Garden’s yearly orchid exhibition is bringing extra beauty to the Kogod Courtyard, one of DC’s most stunning spaces.  “The Future of Orchids: Conservation and Collaboration” fills the entire Kogod Courtyard of the Smithsonian American Art Museum and National Portrait Gallery with around 350 live orchids. The display also features a series of newly commissioned and loaned works by contemporary multimedia artist, Phaan Howng, to help audiences visualize the future of orchids and be inspired to take action toward a sustainable future.

Model Trains & Thomas
Where: Historic Vienna Train Station | Vienna, VA
When: Saturday, 1-5pm
Admisison: Free

Stop by the Historic Vienna Train Station where you can see and hear HO scale model trolleys and trains including Thomas and some of his friends on display and in operation. It’s a great family activity for the young and young at heart.  Hosted by the Northern Virginia Model Railroaders, the station is located at 231 Dominion Road NE in Vienna, VA.

Rock the Rink
Where: The Wharf Ice Rink | Southwest DC
When: Saturday, 6-10pm
Admission: $13/adult, $10/youth, $8/rental

Join other hockey (and ice skating) fans at The Wharf to show your Caps pride. From 6pm-10pm, skate at The Wharf Ice Rink with a DJ, Caps gear giveaways, and more. At 7pm, they’ll also broadcast the Capitals’ away game against the Montreal Canadiens on the bar TV at the Caps Cantina Bar on Transit Pier. Wear your Capitals gear and receive $5 off admission to The Wharf Ice Rink!

A Monumental Experience
Where: Washington Monument | National Mall, DC
When: Daily, 9am – 5pm
Admission: Free

For a “presidential” pursuit this holiday weekend, the Washington Monument is super fun to tour.  You can go up inside to check out interesting exhibits and take in DC views. Advance reservation tickets for the next day are available online for a nominal processing fee. Same-day, free tickets are also be available on a first-come, first-served basis daily starting at 8:30am at the Washington Monument Lodge, located on 15th Street NW, between Madison Drive NW.  Get a glimpse from the inside here.

Learn about Lincoln’s Last Days
Where: Ford’s Theatre | Penn Quarter, DC
When: Daily, 9am – 4:30pm
Admission: Free – $3

Ford’s Theatre isn’t just a place to catch live entertainment. The site of Abraham Lincoln’s assassination highlights its historic significance through exhibits about the president, the circumstances surrounding his assassination, and that fateful night at the theatre. The National Historic Site features a museum, theatre walk-throughs and a presentation, and guests are welcome to explore it all. Best for about ages 8 and up. Reserve tickets online in advance for $3 or get them at the Box Office for free.

Stop by Abe’s Old Digs
Where: President Lincoln’s Cottage | Petworth, DC
When: Saturday – Monday, 9am – 4:30pm
Admission: $10-15/adult, $4-5/ages 6-12, free for 5 and under

Another great way to honor our 16th prez is with a visit to his “summer” house.  Located on the Armed Forces Retirement Home (AFRH) campus in Petworth, the cottage was Abraham Lincoln’s country home and workplace, where he spent one quarter of his presidency. Take a guided tour and see the current installation or go on a self-guided tour of it all — pricing depends on what you opt for.

Celebrate Black History
Where: Around the DC Area
When: Throughout February (and beyond)
Admission: Varies by activity

February is Black History Month, and there are many great events and activities throughout the DC area to celebrate it. Museum programs, guided and self-guided tours, visits to significant sites, story time sessions, special exhibits, and more will be enlightening, enriching, and entertaining for all.

Take a Hike
Where: Around the DMV
When: Throughout the weekend
Admission: Varies by locale

The recommendation to hit the trail is a staple in these round-ups.  And it looks this weekend will be a great time to do it. Enjoy the sunshine, take in the winter scenery, maybe explore local history or spy some wildlife. You can even work in some geocaching!  This post has a a bunch of recommendations for places to tramp with kids. Some specific recs for right now:  The National Arboretum in Northeast DC has lots of easy trails and beautiful plant collections; head out to Harpers Ferry for hiking and history; include some Black History in your outing on the  Underground Railroad Experience Trail; walk in the woods at Pohick Bay Regional Park.

(Geo)Cache in on Fun
Where: Around the Area
When: Anytime
Admission: Free

Take kids on a “treasure” hunt and have a little adventure along the way. Geocaching is a perfect way to be active and enjoy a day outdoors. Whether you search in the city or seek out a destination that requires a hike in the woods, locating the hidden cache will be a thrill for everyone. See this post about our first foray into the pursuit awhile back.

Laurie Berkner Band
Where: Gordon Center for Performing Arts | Owings Mills, MD
When: Sunday, 10am & 3pm
Tickets: $$45-70

Best selling children’s music artist Laurie Berkner is returning to the DC area for two shows. A true pioneer in children’s music, beloved by generations of children and parents for over twenty years, she’ll be playing well-loved hits like “We Are the Dinosaurs” and “Victor Vito,” plus popular newer songs, like “Chipmunk At The Gas Pump” and “Waiting For The Elevator,” and even some brand new singles! Kids should plan to bring their dancing shoes and a stuffed animal (for their heads). FYI: We took a toddler Owen to one of Laurie’s shows years ago, and it was a blast!

Presidents Day with Rocknocerous
Where: Jammin Java | Vienna, VA
When: February 19, 11am
Tickets: $10

A stalwart presence in the D.C. area for nearly twenty years, Rocknoceros returns to their roots with a school holiday concert at the venue they call home.  They will play original songs, new arrangements of children’s songs, and an eclectic mix of danceable pop and classic rock songs.  All ages are welcome.

George Washington’s Birthday Parade
Where: Old Town Alexandria, Kind & Royal Streets
When: Monday, 1-3pm
Admission: Free

Alexandria hosts the largest parade in the country celebrating George Washington’s birthday with marching bands, historic re-enactment troops, and more. Watch the procession as it travel through Old Town Alexandria. See the website for more info and route details.

Ice It
Where: Ice skating rinks around the DC area
When: Throughout the weekend
Admission: Varies by rink

Enjoy some quintessential seasonal fun: Ice skating! Get your skate and art on at the Sculpture Garden.  Glide over the Potomac on The Wharf’s awesome rink. Circle around Washington Harbour as you enjoy river views. Meander along the Figure 8 path at Canal Park. Do some shopping then skate at Pentagon Row, Rockville Town Square, or Reston Town Center. Or head to an ice arena for some skating out of the elements. Check out this post with info for ice rinks — outdoors and in — around the area.

Baltimore, Hon!
Where: All Around Charm City | Baltimore, MD
When: All Weekend
Admission: Varies by locale

The long weekend is a great time for a day trip (or even overnight) to Baltimore — there are so many great family-friendly attractions there, you may want an extra day to enjoy a few. Explore the exhibits at Maryland Science Center. See some of the quirkiest, coolest art around at the American Visionary Art Museum. Play the day away at Port Discovery. Get an eyeful of the underwater world at the National Aquarium. View history in the works at the Baltimore Museum of Industry. And even more! This KFDC guide has the scoop.

Outdoor Outings
Where: Around the DC area
When: Ongoing
Admission: Varies by locale

Take advantage of the sunny weather and get outdoors this weekend!  This post, written during Covid, is full of recs for activities that take place in the fresh air, from hikes to art experiences to seasonal sports to garden explorations to all-season fun.  (Note that none of the light shows are running now.)

Romeo & Juliet
Where: Synetic Theatre | Crystal City, VA
When: Through March 24
Tickets: $35-65

It’s probably hard to imagine a wordless Shakespeare production, but Synetic Theater’s version of Romeo and Juliet is just that, and it’s phenomenal. (I saw a performance of it a few years ago.) Innovative, fluid choreography set against dramatic scenery of gears in a clock, all to a unique soundtrack of ticks, tocks, and chimes makes for a gorgeous, mesmerizing production. Words aren’t necessary when a familiar story is told in such a beautifully expressive way. If you’re a fan of the bard or just appreciate superb theatre, I highly recommend this show. Teens and older could enjoy it, but it makes for a great grown-up night out.

Mindplay
Where: Arena Stage | Southwest DC
When: Through March 3
Tickets: $41-95 (check for discount)

Mind tricks, anyone? Mentalist Vinny DePonto delivers a performance full of them in this one-man (+ a few audience members) show. It’s a fascinating, delightful, and poignant trip down memory lane as he explores the mind’s inner workings and what we hold onto in our heads. Highly recommend for a fun evening out — for teens and older!

***MORE GOOD STUFF***
* A couple of immersive experiences for kids are still running: See more about Disney Encanto x CAMP DC and the Hot Wheels Champion Experience!
* Arise Academy Camp is hosting a virtual Valentine’s Celebration via Zoom on Saturday, 11am – 12pm.
* DCist recommends four local winter getaways from DC.
* Coming to the Shoppes at Bethesda Row is Rowan, a safe and celebratory one-stop destination for ear piercing that exclusively uses licensed nurses — perfect for kids getting their first studs.
* Amazon is having a President’s Day Sale — here are a few picks: This set that was already in my cart, this contraption that I keep hearing good things about, this worldly board game, and these packing cubes.
* More good sales this weekend: For kiddos, for teens, for everyone, for the home.
* A perfect cute jumpsuit for spring, when it warms up, but isn’t too hot.
* Just finished this book and recommend!  Now starting this collection of short stories by one of my favorite authors.
* How awesome would it be to see this show at The Anthem? It’s sold out, but resale tix are available here.
* Anyone else also enjoying One Day on Netflix?
* Because we’re all dying to know what they said 😍

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Filed under 2024, DC, Maryland, Virginia, Weekend, Winter

The Weekend Round-Up:
February 9-11

 

Happy Weekend!

Quick links to posts full of ideas for ongoing fun:
* Best Outdoors in the DC Area
* Local Hikes with Kids
* The Great Indoors
* Off-the-Beaten-Path Museums
* Active Pursuits Inside
* Kid-Friendly Eats
* Ice Skating
* Baltimore with Kids
* Peaceful Places

Feel the Love
Where: Around the DC area
When: Throughout the weekend
Admission: Varies by activity

Love is in the air — and at places all around DC this weekend! Events and activities to celebrate and prep for Valentine’s Day range from art making to nature programs to cookie decorating. And they’re sure to be especially sweet. This post has details on all of them.

Celebrate Black History
Where: Around the DC Area
When: Throughout February (and beyond)
Admission: Varies by activity

February is Black History Month, and there are many great events and activities throughout the DC area to celebrate it. Museum programs, guided and self-guided tours, visits to significant sites, story time sessions, special exhibits, and more will be enlightening, enriching, and entertaining for all.

Kid Workshop: Chalkboard Message Center
Where: Lowes locations aroud the area
When: Saturday, 10am – 1pm
Admission: Free

Your mini-DIYer will love this special Valentine’s workshop as the build a chalkboard that doubles as a vase. It’s the perfect way to say I Love You all year long.

Saturday Morning Live!
Where: National Theatre | Downtown DC
When: Saturday, 9:30am & 11am
Admission: Free

See the Visionaries of the Creative Arts ensemble perform the children’s story, I Don’t Want to Be Me, by Patricia Lee Davis and Jocelyn Mack. This story about self-acceptance and embracing imperfections features a young African-American girl named Michelle, who is struggling to accept her natural beauty. Encounters with nature and animals remind her that she is beautiful the way she is. Children can also participate in an interactive drama about the story. Register for a show to ensure admission!

The World & Me: Exhibit Takeover – Deep Time Edition
Where: Natural History Museum | National Mall, DC
When: Saturday, 10am – 12pm
Admission: Free

Join the World and Me team in the Deep Time museum exhibit museum for a special fossil-focused adventure! Smithsonian scientists and educators will be on hand to welcome families and anyone interested in exploring Earth’s deep past. Touch and hold real fossils, observe experts at work in the FossiLab, engage with educators and experts throughout the exhibit at different carts and stations, and more. No registration required; just pop in.

Family Day: Make a Mini Magazine
Where: Library of Congress | Capitol Hill, DC
When: Saturday, 10:30am – 3:30pm
Admission: Free

Visit the Library of Congress for a family activity and to learn more about the Library’s collections. In honor of Black History Month, they’ll be discussing and finding inspiration in W.E.B. DuBois’ “The Brownies’ Book”, the first magazine for African American children. There will also be a special appearance from honored guest Librarian of Congress Carla Hayden at 1pm. Plan for time to explore the whole LOC — it’s amazing! See more about it in this KFDC post.

The Great Zucchini and Abracadabra Alex
Where: Avalon Theatre | Chevy Chase, MD
When: Saturday, 10:30am
Admission: $11.38/ages 2+

Start the day laughing and clapping with your family! The Great Zucchini and Abracadabra Alex are teaming up for an unforgettable, belly laughing show. Two of the DC area’s favorite children’s entertainers are teaming up for a not-to-be-missed show at the historic Avalon Theatre!

Black History Month Family Day
Where: Woodlawn Manor Cultural Park | Sandy Spring, MD
When: Saturday, 11am – 3pm
Admission: Free

For a bonus to Underground Railroad Experience Trail hike, go on February 10for a special Family Day celebrating Black History Month. Drop in the Visitors Center to enjoy story times and hands-on activities celebrating African American heritage and accomplishments as told through this year’s theme: The Arts. Contribute to an “I Have a Dream Canvas”, create your own compass, and follow the path of Harriet Tubman.

Lunar New Year Family Festival
Where: National Postal Museum | Union Station Area, DC
When: Saturday, 11am – 4pm
Admission: Free

The National Postal Museum is ringing in the Year of the Dragon with a Lunar New Year Family Festival this weekend! Join the museum for a day full of free fun and enriching activities for all ages, including crafts, live dance performances, games, and more!

Lunar New Year Family Celebration
Where: American Art Museum | Penn Quarter, DC
When: Saturday, 11:30am – 3pm
Admission: Free

Celebrate the Year of the Dragon at this annual celebration that is always a blast for families! The American Art Museum’s event showcases the ways different Asian cultures ring in the Lunar New Year. Enjoy dance and music performances, crafts, traditional Chinese and Korean art demonstrations, photo booths, face painting (for kids 12 & under, while supplies last), family-friendly activities, and the show stopping lion dance. The Courtyard Café will also offer special holiday treats to celebrate the occasion.

Family Workshop: Snowflake Shadows
Where: Asian Art Museum | National Mall, DC
When: Saturday, 11am – 12:30pm, 1:30-3pm
Admission: Free
Cold weather is crafting weather! Explore how art conservators prevent colors from fading in this hands-on educational program designed for children ages 6-11 and their caregivers. Take a guided tour of Whistler: Streetscapes, Urban Change, create snowflake art, and then bring your snowflake home and watch as it transforms in the sunlight! Sign up for the 11am – 12:30 session here, and for the 1:30-3pm session here.

African Americans at Congressional Cemetery
Where: Congressional Cemetery | Capitol Hill, DC
When: Saturday, 1-2:30pm
Admission: $5 donation

Join an expert docent for an exploration of African American history in Congressional Cemetery in honor of Black History Month. African Americans, across history, have left their mark on the US, and this story of tragedy, endurance, and triumph are echoed in the graves of many individuals who are interred at the cemetery, from the formerly enslaved, to philosophers, to DC’s Mayor for Life. Reservations required. Rain or shine.

Frederick Douglass Birthday Celebration
Where: THEARC | Anacostia, DC
When: Saturday, 2-4pm
Admission: Free

Celebrate Black History Month and the 206th anniversary of Frederick Douglass’s birth. Join Ranger staff at THEARC for pre-program activities at 12:30pm and in the lobby and at 2pm for the main program. Hear Frederick Douglass Oratorical Contest winners recite Douglass’s most famous speeches. Learn about Douglass through a lively, interactive Jeopardy-style game about his life. Enjoy music by the Jubliee Voices of the Washington Revels.  Watch performance by students from the Washington Ballet School from THEARC.

Mardi Gras Celebration
Where: The Wharf | Southwest DC
When: Saturday, 3-7pm
Admission: Free

Let the good times roll at The Wharf’s Mardi Gras celebration. Watch the parade on Wharf Street, check out activity stations with the kids, dance to live music, grab a hurricane (for parents) from the District Pier Bar, and party on!

Moonshot Studio
Where: The REACH | Kennedy Center
When: Saturday & Sunday, 11am – 4:30pm
Admission: Free

Ring in the Year of the Dragon as you get at the studio within The REACH at the Kennedy Center, where all are groups are welcome and encouraged to partake in various art projects and activities.  This weekend work on Lunar New Year-inspired projects, including shadow puppets, paper lanterns, and zodiac prints. Recommended for ages 5+.

Dancing Our Way Through Books
Where: Highland Elementary School | Wheaton, MD
When: Saturday, 11am & Sunday, 2pm
Tickets: Free

Join Kelly King, InterAct Story Theatre teaching artist and founder of Contradiction Dance Theatre and The Movement Movement, as you explore a kid-friendly folk tale through creative movement and dance. Kids get to practice reading skills while moving, dancing, and sharing stories with families and friends. No prior dance training needed…just bring your body and get ready to move. Best for ages 3+.

The Art of Storytelling: According to Coyote
Where: American Indian Museum | National Mall, DC
When: Saturday & Sunday, 2-3:30pm
Admission: Free

Bring the whole family to see According to Coyote, an entertaining play about the antics of the trickster Coyote, an important figure in the stories of the Great Plains, Southwest, and Plateau Native nations. Originally written and performed by playwright and actor John Kauffman (Nez Perce), Kellen Trenal (Black and Niimíipuu [Nez Perce]) takes on the title role, as well as several other supporting characters, in this one-person play.

Junie B. Jones, The Musical
Where: Adventure Theatre | Glen Echo, MD
When: Fri, 7pm  | Sat & Sun, 11am & 2pm
Tickets: $25

It is Junie B.’s first day of first grade, and a lot of things have changed for her: Junie’s friend, Lucille, does not want to be her best pal anymore and, on the bus, Junie B. makes friends with Herb, the new kid at school. Also, Junie has trouble reading the blackboard and her teacher, Mr. Scary, thinks she may need glasses. Throw in a friendly cafeteria lady, a kickball tournament and a “Top-Secret Personal Beeswax Journal,” and first grade has never been more exciting. Featuring a tremendously loveable character and fun-filled songs, Junie B. Jones will capture your audience members’ hearts just as the books captivated an entire generation of students.

The Girl Who Became Legend
Where: Kennedy Center | Foggy Bottom, DC
When: Fri, 7pm | Sat, 1:30pm & 4pm | Sun, 11am & 1:30pm
Tickets: $20

It’s the final weekend of this show for young audiences at the Kennedy Center…  The town of Dustbin is known for two things: rules and dust. But one day, Raina spies a cloud in the sky—and adventure ensues with Calamity Jane, Johnny Appleseed… and a thunderstorm! Coming to the Center from ZACH Theatre in Austin, TX, this charming new folktale takes the stage, packed with spirited tunes. Recommended for ages 8+.

Hansel & Gretel
Where: The Puppet Co.
When: Fri, 10:30am  | Sat & Sun, 11:30am & 1pm
Tickets: $15

Join the Puppet Co. this classic German fairy tale about two kids who get lost in the woods and encounter a witch. Written by Len, Patricia, and Chrisopher Piper, this version of Hansel and Gretel is over 50 years old. Our musical tale, performed using marionettes, is sure to charm you and your little ones. Recommended for ages 4+. Run time approximately 45 minutes.

Romeo & Juliet
Where: Synetic Theatre | Crystal City, VA
When: Through March 24
Tickets: $35-65

It’s probably hard to imagine a wordless Shakespeare production, but Synetic Theater’s version of Romeo and Juliet is just that, and it’s phenomenal. (I saw a performance of it a few years ago.) Innovative, fluid choreography set against dramatic scenery of gears in a clock, all to a unique soundtrack of ticks, tocks, and chimes makes for a gorgeous, mesmerizing production. Words aren’t necessary when a familiar story is told in such a beautifully expressive way. If you’re a fan of the bard or just appreciate superb theatre, I highly recommend this show. Teens and older could enjoy it, but it makes for a great grown-up night out.

Mindplay
Where: Arena Stage | Southwest DC
When: Through March 3
Tickets: $41-95 (check for discount)

Mind tricks, anyone? Mentalist Vinny DePonto delivers a performance full of them in this one-man (+ a few audience members) show. It’s a fascinating, delightful, and poignant trip down memory lane as he explores the mind’s inner workings and what we hold onto in our heads. Highly recommend for a fun evening out — for teens and older!

Local Lacrosse
Where: University of Maryland | College Park, MD
When: Saturday, 12pm
Admission: $15-25/adult, $10-25/youth

How about catching a different sporting event this weekend? It’s the home opener for Maryland men’s lacrosse, and they’re playing another local team, Loyola. And ranked at #4 (UMD) and #12 (Loyola), it should be an exciting game to watch!

Wizards vs 76ers
Where: Capitol One Arena | Penn Quarter, DC
When: Saturday, 7pm
Admission: Tickets prices vary (check for discount)

The Wizards are playing at home on Saturday evening — watch them work some on-court magic against the Philadelphia 76ers. Plan on a pre-game dinner in Penn Quarter — there are plenty of family-friendly places to go in the neighborhood.

Caps vs. Canucks
Where: Capital One Arena
When: Sunday, 1:30pm
Admission: Ticket prices vary (check for discount)

While you’re waiting for the big football game to start, get in some other sports spectating at a Caps game. They’re hosting the Vancouver Canucks at home on Sunday afternoon. Make a longer outing of it in Penn Quarter — grab a meal (recommendations here) or pop in to the National Portrait Gallery/American Art Museum before or after the hockey match.

Chinese New Year Parade
Where: Around Penn Quarter, DC
When: Sunday, 2pm
Admission: Free

Welcome, Year of the Dragon! On Sunday, the annual Chinese Lunar New Year Parade brings vibrant tradition to downtown DC. Festivities kick off at 6th & I Streets NW at 2pm and will wind through the streets of Chinatown celebrating Chinese culture in a brilliant procession that includes traditional dance, music, and, of course, the iconic lions and dragons. Kids always love seeing the show and having trinkets and treats given to them by parade participants passing by. The parade lasts about two hours, and spectating is free. Get there a little early to stake out your curbside spot — lots of folks come out for this one, especially if it’s a nice day.

Museums Beyond DC
Where: Museums in MD & VA
When: Throughout the weekend
Admission: Varies by museum

There’s a lot going on in the District this weekend, but if you want to get out of the city in spite of this (or because of it), head to a museum in Maryland or Virginia! There are a bunch of great places to explore in the ‘burbs and beyond, and this post has a round-up of them.

***MORE GOOD STUFF***
* Whether for this weekend, weekdays, or future dates, these regularly occurring museum programs for kids are great to keep on your radar.
* Where to find food for the Lunar New Year around DC.
* Where to watch the Super Bowl around DC, including at least one family-friendly spot.
* 8 of the DC area’s most romantic restaurants, according to Washington Post.
*children’s movies to stream now.
* Soooo many recipes for Sunday.
* This handy little item has given new life to my sweaters
* Have you ever shopped here for kids clothes?
* Every print of this dress is so pretty! (Also, this less expensive mini.)
* 10 Happy Things for February 💜

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Filed under 2024, DC, Maryland, Virginia, Weekend, Winter

The Weekend Round-Up: February 2-4

Enjoy the sunny weather at Scotts Run Nature Preserve

 

Link up to all kinds of local fun: 
* Best Outdoors in the DC Area
* Local Hikes with Kids
* The Great Indoors
* Off-the-Beaten-Path Museums
* Active Pursuits Inside
* Kid-Friendly Eats
* Ice Skating
* Baltimore with Kids
* Peaceful Places

Celebrate Black History
Where: Around the DC Area
When: Throughout February (and beyond)
Admission: Varies by activity

February is Black History Month, and there are many great events and activities throughout the DC area to celebrate it. Museum programs, guided and self-guided tours, visits to significant sites, story time sessions, special exhibits, and more will be enlightening, enriching, and entertaining for all.

Cool Hikes
Where: Around the DC area
When: Throughout the weekend
Admission: Varies by locale

Lots of sunshine in the weekend forecast, so get out for a walk in the woods and enjoy the crisp air. Tramp in places with scenic views, hike and explore history at interesting locales, and savor some family time outdoors. This post has a a bunch of recommendations for good places to go with kids. Some specific recs for right now: The Underground Railroad Experience Trail at Woodlawn Manor Cultural Park; Scotts Run Nature Preserve in McLean; Patapsco Valley State Park in MD; and the National Arboretum in DC.

Junie B. Jones, The Musical
Where: Adventure Theatre | Glen Echo, MD
When: Fri, 7pm  | Sat & Sun, 11am & 2pm
Tickets: $25

Opening weekend for this kids’ show!  It is Junie B.’s first day of first grade, and a lot of things have changed for her: Junie’s friend, Lucille, does not want to be her best pal anymore and, on the bus, Junie B. makes friends with Herb, the new kid at school. Also, Junie has trouble reading the blackboard and her teacher, Mr. Scary, thinks she may need glasses. Throw in a friendly cafeteria lady, a kickball tournament and a “Top-Secret Personal Beeswax Journal,” and first grade has never been more exciting. Featuring a tremendously loveable character and fun-filled songs, Junie B. Jones will capture your audience members’ hearts just as the books captivated an entire generation of students. (PS:  you can try to win tickets for a future performance in this giveaway!)

Kids DIY Project: Valentines Basket
Where: Home Depot Locations
When: Saturday, 9am – 12pm

Admission: Free – be sure to register in advance!

Home Depot’s free monthly workshop for kids will help them prep for Valentine’s Day (or make a sweet gift) as they build a Valentines Basket. All supplies are provided, including a little apron, and kids get to keep their craft along with a certificate of achievement and collectible pin. All attendees must be accompanied by a parent or adult at all times. Register in advance!

Ice Cream For Breakfast Day
Where: Jeni’s Ice Cream locations around DC
When: Saturday, 9am – 12pm
Admission: Free but plan to buy a scoop!
I scream, you scream, we all scream for Jeni’s ice cream! Put on your PJs and grab a spoon for the the topsy-turviest day of the year. Celebrate Ice Cream For Breakfast Day at your neighborhood scoop shop.  RSVP to let them know you’ll be there!

Paw Patrol
Where: EagleBank Arena | Fairfax, VA
When: Fri, 7pm | Sat & Sun, 10am & 2pm
Tickets: $25-185  
X barks the spot in PAW Patrol Live! “The Great Pirate Adventure”! It’s Pirate Day in Adventure Bay, and Mayor Goodway is getting ready for a big celebration! But first, Ryder and his team of pirate pups must rescue Cap’n Turbot from a mysterious cavern. When they do, they also discover a secret pirate treasure map! The PAW Patrol set out over land and sea to find the treasure for Mayor Goodway’s celebration before Mayor Humdinger finds it first! The pups will need all paws on deck for this pirate adventure, including some help from the newest pup, Tracker!

The Girl Who Became Legend
Where: Kennedy Center | Foggy Bottom, DC
When: Fri, 7pm | Sat, 1:30pm & 4pm | Sun, 11am & 1:30pm
Tickets: $20

This show for young audiences at the Kennedy Center is running this weekend and next…   The town of Dustbin is known for two things: rules and dust. But one day, Raina spies a cloud in the sky—and adventure ensues with Calamity Jane, Johnny Appleseed… and a thunderstorm! Coming to the Center from ZACH Theatre in Austin, TX, this charming new folktale takes the stage, packed with spirited tunes. Recommended for ages &+.

Lunar New Year Celebrations
Where: CommuniKids | Falls Church, VA & Glover Park, DC
When: Saturday & Sunday, 9:30-11:30am
Admission: Free
CommuniKids Language School, which offers Mandarin Immersion for children 18 months to Pre-K4, invites you to celebrate the Lunar New Year this weekend! This FREE festival features children’s activities that include Dragon Dancers, Martial Arts Performers, Storytimes, Arts and Crafts, Music, and of course, yummy Asian food! Visitors are encouraged, but not required to wear traditional Asian costumes to celebrate with the community. RSVP required!

Wings of Legacy: Stories of Black Aviation
Where: College Park Aviation Museum | College Park, MD
When: Saturday, 10am – 4pm
Admission: $2
Join the College Park Aviation Museum and celebrate stories of Black aviation, past and present. Get a sneak peek at updates coming to the Columbia Air Center gallery, be inspired during a Black Aviators tour, get creative with Arts on a Roll, and celebrate pioneering spirits with Black History Month arts and activities for all ages. Interact with the Sankofa Mobile Museum and a virtual reality experience, learn about African Americans in the aviation field while visiting partner tables, and meet Prince George’s County native Caleb Smith, who became the youngest glider pilot in the world.

Walkable Warehouse Sale
Where: Around Old Town Alexandria, VA
When: Saturday & Sunday (hours vary by store)
Admission: Free

Shop and score some great deals in Old Town! More than 50 independent boutiques from Alexandria and the region are participating, offering discounts on clothing, shoes, jewelry, home furnishings, and more. The sale will be spread out in stores, pop-up tents, and open retail space along King Streets and select side streets in Old Town Alexandria. Many Torpedo Factory artists are also participating, so be sure to stop by there, too! See a list of participating businesses and a map to find them here.

First Saturday
Where: National Gallery of Art | National Mall, DC
When: Saturday, 10am – 3pm
Admission: Free

Celebrate Black history, art, and stories at the National Gallery of Art’s monthly First Saturday program. Learn about two of Washington, DC’s, greatest artists, Alma Thomas and Sam Gilliam, and make art inspired by them. Plus, listen to the sounds of the DC Youth Orchestra and check out Celebrating Black Stories, a series of short films curated by the New York International Children’s Film Festival. All activities are free, and most are first come, first served.

Lunar New Year Family Festival
Where: National Museum of Asian Art | National Mall, DC
When: Saturday, 11am – 4pm
Admission: Free

Soar into the year of the dragon at the museum dedicated to Asian art! Celebrate Lunar New Year at the National Museum of Asian Art with free attractions for all ages, including performances, tours, hands-on activities for kids, the lion dance and more.

Origami Fest: Fun Family Folding
Where: National Portrait Gallery | Penn Quarter, DC
When: Saturday, 12-3pm
Admission: Free

At this Weekend Workshop, spark your creativity and learn about the art of origami! Be inspired by Queen Lili‘uokalani’s portrait, roll up your sleeves, and join for an afternoon of origami fun. Whether you’re a seasoned folder or just starting out, this event is all about embracing creativity, making memories, and turning pieces of paper into fantastic creations.

Streetcar Valentines
Where: National Capital Trolley Museum | Colesville, MD
When: Saturday, 12-5pm
Admission: $8
Did you know street cars delivered more than people? Find out more about how street car service and other forms of transit historically — and currently — provide transport for all our letters and packages! Then make a street car Valentine to take home and send to a special person in your life!

Moonshot Studio
Where: The REACH | Kennedy Center
When: Saturday & Sunday, 11am – 4:30pm
Admission: Free
Get creative at this studio within The REACH at the Kennedy Center, where all are groups are welcome and encouraged to partake in various art projects and activities. Through February 11, get ready for the arrival of the Year of the Dragon (February 10th) with Lunar New Year-inspired projects, including shadow puppets, paper lanterns, and zodiac prints.

Ice-travaganza
Where: Reston Town Center | Reston, VA
When: Saturday, 1-4pm
Admission:  Free
Held near Reston Town Center’s beloved outdoor ice-skating rink, Ice-travaganza will feature intricate ice sculptures with a live carving demo, hot chocolate, s’mores, a photo booth and a DJ. Skating fans will also be treated to live ice skating performances before they can hit the rink themselves (see pricing and more info for ice skating here).

Great Movies in the Great Hall: The Incredibles
Where: National Building Museum | Judiciary Square, DC
When: Saturday, 3:30-5:30pm
Admission: $9-15/adult, $5/age 12-17, free/under 12

How about family movie night in super cool space? See a screening of The Incredibles in the Building Museum’s stunning Great Hall — and get some extra insight, to boot. Learn about the film’s many references to mid-century modern architecture and design. Explore where the four-time Oscar-nominated movie fits within the history of animation, and, how it achieves its life-like animation techniques. Introductory remarks are to be delivered by Donald Albrecht, independent architecture and design curator, and author of the book Designing Dreams: Modern Architecture in the Movies. BYO blanket or chair. Concessions available for purchase.

Concert: Onward and Upward
Where: National Cathedral | Northwest DC
When: Saturday, 4pm
Admission: Free

Celebrate Black History Month at the Cathedral through this inspirational evening of spoken word, dance, and music. Featuring Washington Performing Arts Children of the Gospel, the Katherine Smith Contemporary Dance Ensemble, the SE Tennis and Learning Center’s “Blacks in Wax.” Free and open to the public. RSVP appreciated.

Black History Month Celebration
Where: KID Museum | Bethesda, MD
When: Sunday, 10am – 4pm
Admission: Free

Join KID Museum to honor and celebrate Black cultures and contributions at this celebration! Explore the fascinating heritage of Nigeria through traditional regalia and hands-on making with cowry shells; join storytelling and art-making activities fit for royalty; and, engage with talented STEM makers and more while enjoying a fun-filled day with your family.

Free Community Day
Where: National Museum of Women in the Arts | Downtown, DC
When: Sunday, 12-5pm
Admission: Free

The first Sunday of every month is a great opportunity explore the National Museum of Women in the Arts when admission is FREE!  Works span the centuries, from the 16th to the present in a variety of mediums, highlighting women artists all over the world. If tickets aren’t available, plan to go another day — the admission fee is worth it!  (Or snag them for a future free day.)

Model Rocket Launch
Where: Goddard Space Flight Center | Greenbelt, MD
When: Sunday, 1-2pm
Admission: Free

Join the monthly model rocket launch at the NASA Goddard Space Flight Center. Anyone is welcome, and if you’ve got a model rocket to fly, bring it along (though there are some restrictions – see them here). The program takes place the first Sunday of every month at 1pm. Read more about it in this post.

Watch the Wizards
Where: Capitol One Arena | Penn Quarter, DC
When: Friday, 7pm & Sunday, 3:30pm
Admission: Tickets prices vary (look for discounts)

The Wizards are playing at home on Friday evening and Sunday afternoon — watch them work some on-court magic against the Miami Heat or  Phoenix Suns.  And there’s a Jordan Poole bobblehead giveaway for the first 10,000 fans!  Plan on a pre-game dinner or lunch in Penn Quarter — there are plenty of family-friendly places to go in the neighborhood. Some recs: Jaleo, Carmine’s, Daikaya, Shake Shack, and Hill Country BBQ… read more about all of them and more kid-friendly restaurants here.

Nature Calling
Where: Nature centers around the DMV
When: Throughout the weekend
Admission: Free

If you’re not feeling outdoorsy, you can still get a dose of the outside world in the comfort of the indoors at a nature center. There are several great ones around the area that offer cool exhibits, including live creatures. Buddie Ford Nature Center in Alexandria, Watkins in Upper Marlboro, Potomac Overlook in Arlington, Long Branch in Falls Church, and Brookside in Silver Spring all make for a great outing.

Movie & a Meal
Where: The Alamo | Northeast DC
When: Ongoing
Admission: $13/adult, $11/child, $12/senior
After 4pm – $15/adult, $13/child, $14/senior

Catching a flick with the kids is always fun, even better when you can enjoy a real meal, too.  The Alamo is the only theater in the city where you can do that — and it’s a good one! The theaters are nice, the seating is comfortable, and the food is tasty. See what’s playing there now. (PS:  There’s also a location in Crystal City, VA.)

***MORE GOOD STUFF***
* Looking for Spring Break getaway ideas?  Check out these destinations within driving distance of DC! And here’s an awesome one further away, but perfect for the off-season.
* Essential bakeries around DC, per Eater.
* Really enjoying Jose Andres’ new(ish) Substack, The Chef’s List.
* Classes for planning a Disney trip. I’m actually not surprised.
* Made this vegan dish recently, and it was so delicious (and I’m not vegan)!
* New series rec: Expats is so intriguing!
* Starting to think Spring Break and browsing these.
* According to my teen daughter, pickle kits are all the rage on TikTok right now. (Yikes?) She just ordered one; will report back.
* Swiftie Math 🙂

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Filed under 2024, DC, Maryland, Virginia, Weekend

The Weekend Round-Up:
January 26-28

Glide the night away at Canal Park’s Community Skate

 

Happy Weekend!

Loads of ideas for ongoing activities in these go-to posts:
* Best Outdoors in the DC Area
* Local Hikes with Kids
* The Great Indoors
* Off-the-Beaten-Path Museums
* Active Pursuits Inside
* Kid-Friendly Eats
* Ice Skating
* Baltimore with Kids
* Peaceful Places

Community Ice Skate Night
Where: Canal Park Ice Rink | Capitol Riverfront, DC
When: Friday, 6:30-10pm
Admission: Free – $12/child, $15/adult, $6/rental

In honor of National Ice Skating Month, join a Community Ice Skate Night at the Canal Park Ice Rink featuring DJ CiCi. Plus, FIRST 100 attendees to arrive will get the free entry and skate rental. Note that in order to get free entry, you must check in at the Canal Park Ice Rink skate shop window on the evening of the event (do not pre-purchase tickets online prior to the event). They’ll begin granting admission for Community Skate Night at 6:30 pm, so make sure to arrive early to be one of the first 100 skaters!

Explore a New (To You) Museum
Where: Museums around MD & VA
When: Ongoing
Admission: Varies by museum

In case you missed it, there’s a brand new round-up of museums in Maryland and Virginia. While DC is well known for its many great museums, both on the National Mall and in other areas around the city, there are even more beyond the District lines that are great to explore with kids. Find one to check out with the fam this weekend!

Auto Focus
Where: Washington Convention Center | Mt. Vernon Square, DC
When: Through Sunday
Admission: $20/adults, $8/ages 6-12, free/5 & under

The 2024 Washington Auto Show is in its second and final weekend. If there’s any “grown-up” event that is equally fun for all ages, this is it. More than 600 cars and trucks are on display for guests to check out, plus there are more activities like Ride ‘n Drives with Jeep, an Art of Motion exhibit, exotic car display, and Subaru Love Pets area with dogs from local animal shelters will give guests even more to do and see. Get a glimpse and an idea of what to expect in KFDC posts about it here and here.

Monster Jam
Where: Capitol One Arena | Downtown DC
When: Saturday & Sunday
Tickets: $20+
The world’s largest and most famous monster truck tour featuring the biggest names in monster trucks will thunder its way into DC. Gravedigger, El Toro Loco, Megolodon, Dragon, Wild Side, and more will be tearing up the indoor terrain.  Before you go, be sure to read this post with tips for making the most of the experience.

Hill Family Biking: Ride to Canal Park Ice Skating
Where: Maury Elementary to Canal Park | Capitol Hill/Navy Yard, DC
When: Saturday, 10:30am – 12pm
Admission: Free

Join Hill Family Biking for short ride from Maury Elementary down to Canal Park for ice skating. (Anyone that wants to skate should pre-register to guarantee a spot in the 12pm session.) They’ll have volunteers marshaling to ensure the group stays together. MPD bike team will also be participating in the ride to connect officers with the community. If your family’s bikes need some TLC, get there 15 minutes early to get some assistance– bike maintenance tools will be available, as well as some experienced amateur bike mechanics on hand to assist.

Art & Me Preservation Family Workshop: Screen Time
Where: Museum of Asian Art | National Mall, DC
When: Saturday, 11am – 12:30pm & 1:30-3pm
Admission: Free

Art & Me is back in person! Visit the special exhibition Palace Life Unfolds: Conserving a Chinese Lacquer Screen and explore how art and science collide when conservators preserve precious works of art. Then return to the ImaginAsia studio to learn more about the process of repairing a work of art with Smithsonian conservators and educators, and make your own creation to take home. This program is designed for children ages 3–8 with adult participation. Sign up for the 11am-12:30pm time slot or 1:30-3:30pm.

Orchids Galore!
Where: Kogod Courtyard | Penn Quarter, DC
When: Throughout the weekend, 11:30am – 7pm
Admission: Free
See several hundred varieties of orchids making the already stunning Kogod Courtyard, at the center of the National Portrait Gallery and American Art, even more so. The Future of Orchids: Conservation and Collaboration is the annual orchid exhibit presented by the U.S. Botanic Garden and Smithsonian Gardens. View the flowers alongside artwork intended to prompt viewers to think about the future of orchids. Bring along some pencils and paper for sketching.  And, of course, plan to tour the museums, too — see more about both here and here.

Hot Wheels Champion Experience
Where: Tysons Corner Center | Tysons, VA
When: Throughout the weekend
Admission:

This exciting immersive experience for kids combines exhilarating digital and hands-on play in a 16,000-square foot interactive environment for all ages. Conquer all kinds of digital challenges, create a car and see in in 3D on a bog screen, immerse in AR fun, and more. Get more details and a glimpse of it all in this post.

Disney Encanto x CAMP
Where: Tysons Corner | Tysons, VA
When: Through March
Admission: Starts at $32

Another immersive experience, this one inspired by the beloved Encanto movie is also running at Tysons — and delivers on the magic for kids! Tickets are limited for this weekend, but there were still some available last I checked.  If it’s sold out, snag them for another time.  And read this post for more about the experience.

Weekend Family Matinee: Trolls Band Together
Where: Avalon Theatre | Chevy Chase, DC
When: Saturday & Sunday, 10:30am
Admission: $10.38

The Avalon Theatre in Chevy Chase, the oldest operating movie house in the area and a non-profit, is hosting a Weekend Family Matinees on Saturday. Trolls Band Together will be screened both Saturday and Sunday.

DC Day: Honoring the End of Street Car Service
Where: National Capital Trolley Museum | Colesville, MD
When: Saturday, 12-5pm
Admission: $8

Celebrate street car history in the DC area! For 100 years, street cars represented the most widely used public transit, moving millions of people and connecting communities. In honor of that, there will be special street car rides, family-friendly activities, and opportunities to explore objects from the archive.

Lunar New Year Celebration
Where: Kennedy Center | Foggy Bottom DC
When: Saturday, 6pm (tickets available at 4:30pm)
Admission: Free

At this Millennium Stage session, prepare to welcome the Year of the Dragon with lion dancing and drumming performances. Advance tickets are sold out, but free tickets will also be available at the Hall of States Box Office on Saturday, beginning at 4:30pm.

Annie
Where: National Theatre | Downtown DC
When: Through Sunday
Tickets: $44-139 (look for discounts)
Holding onto hope when times are tough can take an awful lot of determination, and sometimes, an awful lot of determination comes in a surprisingly small package. Little Orphan Annie has reminded generations of theatergoers that sunshine is always right around the corner, and now the best-loved musical of all time is set to return in a new production – just as you remember it and just when

Mindplay
Where: Arena Stage | Southwest DC
When: Through March 3
Tickets: $41-95

Mind tricks, anyone? Mentalist Vinny DePonto delivers a performance full of them in this one-man (+ a few audience members) show. It’s a fascinating, delightful, and poignant trip down memory lane as he explores the mind’s inner workings and what we hold onto in our heads. Highly recommend for a fun evening out — for teens and older!

Hansel & Gretel
Where: The Puppet Co. | Glen Echo Park, MD
When: Through February 18
Tickets: $15

Join the Puppet Co. for this classic German fairy tale about two kids who get lost in the woods and encounter a witch. Written by Len, Patricia, and Chrisopher Piper, this version of Hansel and Gretel is over 50 years old. Our musical tale, performed using marionettes, is sure to charm you and your little ones. Directed by Danny Pushkin. Recommended for ages 4+.

Finding Nemo Jr. The Musical
Where: Thomas Jefferson Community Theatre | Arlington, VA
When: Through Sunday
Tickets: $12-15

Encore Stage & Studio presents its signature theatre by kids for kids… This beloved story follows Marlin, an anxious and over-protective clownfish, who lives in the Great Barrier Reef with his child Nemo, who longs to explore the world beyond their anemone home. But when Nemo is captured, Marlin decides to face his fears and sets off on an epic adventure across the ocean. With the help of lovable characters such as the optimistic Dory, laid-back sea turtle Crush, and the Tank Gang, Marlin and Nemo both overcome challenges on their journey to find each other and themselves. Recommended for all ages.

tick, tick…BOOM
Where: Kennedy Center | Foggy Bottom, DC
When: Opens Friday through February 4
Tickets: $59-349 (look for discounts)
Before there was RENT… there was tick, tick… BOOM!, Jonathan Larson’s explosive musical about life, death, and the necessity of art. The semi-autobiographical story follows Jon, a composer struggling to break into New York City’s theater scene. Recommended for teens and older.  Shows are mostly sold out, but you can look for resale tickets here.

Mozart & Mark Rothko
Where: National Galley of Art | National Mall, DC
When: Sunday, 1pm & 3pm
Admission: Free

The University of Maryland Opera Studio will perform a selection of Mozart’s works, honoring the favorite composer of Mark Rothko, whose works are on display in a special exhibition right now. The artist famously said of Mozart, “I became a painter because I wanted to raise painting to the level of poignancy of music and poetry.”  The performances will take place in the West Garden Court; the Rothko exhibit is in the East Building.

NCAA Basketball Around DC
Where: Colleges around the DC Area
When: Throughout the weekend
Admission: Varies by game
We’re in the thick of college basketball season.  And with so many universities in the area, there’s always some good hoops action going on around town. Here are some games to catch this weekend:
* Maryland men vs Nebraska on Saturday at 12pm (Go, Terps!)
* Catholic men vs Moravian on Saturday at 2pm
* Catholic women vs Moravian on Saturday at 4pm
* George Mason men vs  Rhode Island on Saturday at 4pm
* American men vs Colgate on Saturday at 4pm
* George Mason women vs VCU on SUnday at 4pm

***MORE GOOD STUFF***
* The International Spy Museum’s annual Spy Fest takes place next Friday evening, February 2! I can tell you from experience, it’s a very intriguing event. And the website might say it’s sold out, but I may have some intel that more tickets could be released…
* Washingtonian just released its list of the 100 Very Best Restaurants for 2024.
* You can still get (pricey) tickets for the Ravens game on Sunday!
* Latest movie rec (not for kids).
* Is it weird that I’m excited about this purchase?
* Ever shop at Everlane?  They always have great basics as well as pieces with a little extra something, like this sweater I just ordered.
* How great is this?

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Filed under 2024, DC, Maryland, Virginia, Weekend, Winter

The Weekend Round-Up: January 19-21

Wishing the kid adult behind the goggles the happiest 18th (!!!) birthday ❤️

 

This Weekend Round-Up warrants some extra thoughts, as it’s not just any weekend here. Today, the kid whose sweet, smiling, three-year-old face lights up each page of this blog… he turns 18, officially an adult.

There’s a reason why it’s cliché to say they grow up so fast:  Because they do.  It really feels like yesterday that Owen arrived in the world, nearly three weeks early, weighing less than six pounds, a helpless tiny human completely dependent on Levi and me.  In the blink of an eye (cliché again!), he’s grown into an intelligent, self-driven, good-natured, very competent young man.  The itty baby who once fit into the crook of my arm is now 6’4″ and makes me look like the tiny one.

One of my favorite things about Owen is how he truly experiences life with all of his senses and every fiber of his being. Anyone who has ever accompanied him on a hike, bike ride, trip to a new destination, museum visit, or even just a walk down the street to see the sunset has heard him express his appreciation for nature, art, his city, his friends and family, and how it makes him feel.  He approaches everything he does with grit and so much heart, from school to the soccer field, speaking to a delegation of 300 people, putting it all out there on the basketball court.

He has the best smile, and I love that we get to see it often.

His next trip around the sun is going to be an exciting one… this is the year he’ll make one of the biggest decisions of his life thus far, graduate from high school, leave home for college.  It’s bittersweet, to say the least. And while I’m all too aware of all of the “lasts” in this coming year, I also know it’s just the beginning of an incredible journey ahead. I can’t wait to see where it will take him.

Happy Weekend!  And a very Happy 18th Birthday to my sweet O.

 

* * * 

 

Go-to posts packed with ideas for local fun:
* The Great Indoors
* Off-the-Beaten-Path Museums
* Kid-Friendly Eats
* Ice Skating
* Best Outdoors in the DC Area
* Local Hikes with Kids
* Baltimore with Kids
* Peaceful Places

Washington Auto Show
Where: Washington Convention Center, DC
When: Friday, Saturday, & Sunday
Admission: $15/age 13+, $6/age 6-12, free/5 & under

The annual Washington Auto Show revs up this weekend! And if there’s any “grown-up” event that is equally fun for kids and adults, this is it. The Auto Show is like a Truck Touch, but with automobiles — hundreds of them — on display for guests to check out. Other activities like a driving area for kids, electric vehicle test rides, an exotic car display, a classic car zone, and so much more will give guests even more to do and see. The show will be in town and running every day through January 28. Get a glimpse and an idea of what to expect in KFDC posts about it here and here.

DC Teen Scene
Where: Around the DC area
When: Ongoing
Admission: Varies by activity

In honor of a certain big birthday this weekend, I’m sharing this post written by the young man (he’s officially an adult!) of the moment.  It’s full of recommendations for hanging out with teens, from museums to outdoor recreation to sports events to live entertainment to a neighborhood with lots of things to do.

All Downhill…
Where: Ski resorts around the region
When: Through winter
Admission: Varies by resort

The fresh snow makes it a great time to hit the slopes for a day trip or even an overnight this weekend!  Skiing is a fun and active way to enjoy some family time, and there are a bunch of ski resorts within a few hours’ drive that are great for young, newbie skiers (and veteran swooshers, too). This post has info about Whitetail and one of our expriences there. And other relatively close resorts for day trips are Liberty and Bryce.  Farther away, but good to check out for longer trips are RoundtopMassanuttenWintergreen,  Seven Springs,  Hidden Valley,  Snowshoe,  Timberline, and Wisp. (PS: The photo above is not from an area resort… but it’s inspo to go and a very recent pic of the birthday boy.)

Batman Live in Concert
Where: Warner Theatre | Downtown DC
When: Friday, 8pm
Tickets: $38-115
This is a one-of-a-kind experience that is a mixture of going to the movie theater and a concert.  Watch the film projected onto a larger-than-life screen while an orchestra plays the film score live on stage in front of you.The Dark Knight of Gotham City begins his war on crime with his first major enemy being Jack Napier, a criminal who becomes a clownishly homicidal villain known as The Joker.

Kids DIY Workshop
Where: Lowes locations around the DC Area
When: Saturday, 9am – 12pm
Admission: Free

Lowes is hosting their monthly in-person workshop for kids. This Saturday, they can get to work building their own toolbox, so your little helper will be eager to tag along on your next home improvement project. Be sure to register in advance before Saturday!

Shaun the Sheep: Flock this Way
Where: National Children’s Museum | Downtown DC
When: Starting Saturday through May 12
Admission: $18.95

The National Children’s Museum Visiting Exhibit Hall will be transformed into Mossy Bottom Farm as Shaun the Sheep: Flock This Way! opens this weekend.
Based on the popular film and television characters, the interactive exhibit will explore, investigate, and share in the antics of Shaun the Sheep and his pals through a all kinds of hands-on play. It’s most impactful for children ages 3-9, but all are welcome. And there’s much more to explore at the museum — read all about it.

Adaptive Skating Day
Where: The Wharf | Southwest DC
When: Saturday, 11am – 2pm
Admission: $10

The Wharf Ice Rink is hosting a special session of adaptive skating and more, designed to provide a fun experience on the ice for those that are more comfortable in a reduced stimulus setting or that may need additional support. There will be ice skating, an activity station, a snack station (make your own trail mix), a calm down corner for anyone who needs to take a little break and a photo station with zamboni. Wheelchairs and AFO’s are welcome on the ice and The Wharf will have skates and skate aids available. Four Team USA skaters will be on hand to assist on and off the ice and have experience working with children with ASD, ADHD and Down’s Syndrome. The $10 registration fee includes admission for one child or adult and one parent, guardian, or caregiver to join them on the ice.

Cub Corner
Where: College Park Aviation Museum | College Park, MD
When: Saturday, 10:30-11:30am
Admission: $5/adult, $2/child

Head to the museum to enjoy a short story and craft in the museum’s gallery, along with checking out all the cool aircraft and artifacts on display. The program is designed for ages 5 & under, but the museum will fascinate all ages, including adults. And FYI, it’s located right next to the College Park Airport, the oldest continuously operating airport in the world.

Lunar New Year at Moonshot Studio
Where: The REACH | Kennedy Center, DC
When: Saturday & Sunday, 11am – 4:30pm
Admission: Free

Get creative at this studio within The REACH at the Kennedy Center, where all are welcome and encouraged to partake in various art projects and activities. Through February 11, get ready for the arrival of the Year of the Dragon (February 10th) with Lunar New Year-inspired projects, including shadow puppets, paper lanterns, and zodiac prints.

Freeze Dance Party
Where: Kensington Town Hall | Kensington, MD
When: Saturday, 3-5pm
Admission: $7/person, $25 max/family (babies free) 

The Noyes Children’s Library Foundation is kicking off 2024 with a freeze dance for families. The event will include a dance leader getting kids moving with fun tunes, tables with crafts, and a separate room with storybooks for a quiet space. The dance party is open to children of all ages; the crafts are geared to kids from 2-8 years old. Free snacks and water will be available. Space is limited and sales are only at the door.

Finding Nemo Jr. The Musical
Where: Thomas Jeffereson Community Theatre | Arlington, VA
When: Friday, Saturday, & Sunday
Tickets: $12-15

Encore Stage & Studio presents its signature theatre by kids for kids… This beloved story follows Marlin, an anxious and over-protective clownfish, who lives in the Great Barrier Reef with his child Nemo, who longs to explore the world beyond their anemone home. But when Nemo is captured, Marlin decides to face his fears and sets off on an epic adventure across the ocean. With the help of lovable characters such as the optimistic Dory, laid-back sea turtle Crush, and the Tank Gang, Marlin and Nemo both overcome challenges on their journey to find each other and themselves. Recommended for all ages.

Hansel & Gretel
Where: The Puppet Co. | Glen Echo Park, MD
When: Starts Saturday through February 18
Tickets: $15

Join the Puppet Co. for this classic German fairy tale about two kids who get lost in the woods and encounter a witch. Written by Len, Patricia, and Chrisopher Piper, this version of Hansel and Gretel is over 50 years old. Our musical tale, performed using marionettes, is sure to charm you and your little ones. Directed by Danny Pushkin. Recommended for ages 4+.

Elena Moon Park and Friends
Where: Kennedy Center | Foggy Bottom, DC
When: Saturday, 11am & 1:30pm
Tickets: $20

Take an “unhurried journey” around the globe through song! Elena Moon Park and Friends performs folk and children’s music from East and Southeast Asia, reimagined to celebrate various musical traditions, languages, styles, and stories. Recommended for ages 7+.

Books Alive
Where: Highland Elementary School | Wheaton, MD
When: Saturday, 11am & Sunday, 2pm
Tickets: Free

Interact Story Theatre’s continues its Family Theatre Series in the new year, kicking it off with a Family Literacy Fiesta. Artistic Director Ali Oliver-Krueger will lead kids and adults in exploring a favorite folk tale together through movement, drama, and song. Everyone’s a part of the story in this Family Arts Workshop! Best for ages 3 and up.

Weekend Workshops
Where: National Portrait Gallery | Penn Quarter, DC
When: Saturday & Sunday, 12-3pm
Admission: Free

Drop in at the National Portrait Gallery to do some art making! All ages are welcome to get creative at Weekend Workshops. Learn about artists and changemakers, then create art inspired by their stories. Of course, explore the whole museum while you’re there. See more about the National Portrait Gallery here.

(W)Hoop It Up
Where: Colleges around the DC Area
When: Throughout the weekend
Admission: Varies by game
Watching college teams play ball  is just as exciting, sometieseven more so, than the pros.  And tickets are often cheaper.  With so many universities in the area, there’s always some good college hoops action going on during the season. Here are some games to catch this weekend:
* Maryland women vs Illinois on Saturday at 1pm
* GW women vs Saint Louis Bilikens on Saturday at 2pm
* George Mason men vs St. Bonaventure Bonnies on Saturday at 2pm
* American women vs Lehigh on Saturday at 2pm
* Howard men & women vs Norfolk State on Saturday at 2pm
* Maryland men vs Michigan State on Sunday at 12pm

Wizards this Weekend (including Kids Day)
Where: Capitol one Arena | Penn Quarter, DC
When: Saturday, 7pm & Sunday, 6pm
Admission: Ticket prices vary (look for discounts)

The Wizards have two home games this weekend. See them play the San Antponio Spurs on Saturday evening or go to the game against the Nuggets on Sunday, which is also a Kids Day — the first 5,000 fans will get a G-Wiz Squish Plushie.

Building Stories Community Celebration
Where: National Building Museum
When: Sunday, 10am – 4pm
Admission: Free

The National Building Museum is celebrating the opening of its new long-term exhibitionwith a FREE community celebration. Building Stories brings kids and adults alike on an immersive exploration of the world of architecture, engineering, construction, and design found in the pages of children’s books. The event includes celebrity story time, live music, puppet shows, giveaways, and more. Registration recommended!

Tu B’Shevat Painting and Planting
Where: Home Depot | Northeast DC
When: Sunday, 1:30pm
Admission: Free
Tu B’Shevat is the Jewish New Year for the trees, so Chabad East DC welcomes all to celebrate with a workshop to paint terra cotta pots and then fill them with seeds and soil.  There will also be special Tu B’Shevat snacks!
All ages are welcome!

Disney’s Frozen
Where: Kennedy Center | Foggy Bottom, DC
When: Through Sunday
Tickets: $35-185 (find discount)

The Tony Award–nominated Broadway musical is now on tour across North America. Frozen features the songs you know and love from the original film, plus an expanded score with a dozen new numbers by the film’s songwriters. It’s everything you want in a musical: It’s moving. It’s spectacular. And above all, it’s pure Broadway joy. Recommended for ages 6+.

Indoor Action
Where: Around the DC area
When: Throughout the weekend
Admission: Varies by place

This post will likely come in handy this weekend, if you want to enjoy some active fun, but also want to stay indoors. From pickleball and roller skating to tennis and ping pong to escape rooms and scavenger hunts to an indoor waterpark, find ideas for  all kinds of ways to get your fun and game on.

***MORE GOOD STUFF***
* There’s a new post about regularly occurring museum programs for kids around DC — and it’s a good one to bookmark!
* With a new snowfall, re-sharing this post with a long list of sledding spots around the area.
* Some of the best comic book stores in the DC area.
This episode  of The Daily about SATs is an interesting listen.
* Just started reading this book and really enjoying it so far.
* If you’re doing some new year purging (or buying), here’s a helpful post.
* And if you’re just buying, don’t miss Amazon’s Winter Sale. A few picks: This puffer, these and these for kids, a family game and this one for teens, this for the dry winter air, and this because it looks awesome.
* How cool is this and can Metro get them?

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Filed under 2024, DC, Maryland, Virginia, Weekend, Winter