Tag Archives: Discovery Theatre

Weekend Treats, No Tricks

Halloween has already begun, as far as Boba Fett is concerned


So, it’s not officially Halloween this weekend, but given all the events going on — and the fact that my kids are practically living in costumes — for all intents and purposes, it’s Halloween. So, I’m going with the theme. If you’re spooked by the idea of celebrating early, there’s still plenty more to do: a family day at the Newseum, theatre performances on local stages, museum exhibits, book readings, and more. And I’m not even going to mention the “s” word that’s supposedly on it’s way tomorrow (ignore it and it’ll go away, right?), but cooler weather is coming. Fingers crossed that it’s of the crisp, sunny fall day variety. Happy Weekend!

Halloween HappeningsYou don’t have to wait until Monday to get the Halloween festivities started. Catch a concert in costume at National Geographic Live; design a pop-up haunted house at the Building Museum; trick or treat at Old Town Boutiques; put some air in your scare at the Udvar-Hazy Center or College Park Aviation Museum; enjoy kids festivities at the MLK Library, Discovery Theater, GW University, and the Crime Museum. Find details for all of these events in this KFDC post about the many Halloween happenings around town.

Go “Around the World” at the NewseumSaturday is a special Family Day at the museum dedicated to all things news and media.  Take a trip across the globe with journalist Nelly Bly through a variety of activities geared especially toward kids, a scavenger hunt, front page news games, a historical enactment of Bly, and a 3-D short film among them. This all starts at 11am – see the schedule for activity times. Admission to the museum is still the regular price (21.95/adults, $12.95/ages 7-18, free for ages 6 and under), but you’ll get to experience the special activities along with all the permanent collections.  And, as mention in this KFDC post about the Newseum a couple of weeks ago, tickets are good for two consecutive days, so you can go back Sunday for even more.

Fall Frolic – Glen Echo Park’s annual Halloween-themed event is a seasonal fave for all ages.  The public is invited to explore the park through hands-on crafts, Halloween activities, and performances. Decorate trick-or-treat bags, make a spooky spider or a friendly ghost, and color Halloween pictures for free.  Pay a small fee $1-2) for pumpkin decorating and face painting. The Park’s studios and galleries will also be open for visitors to view the works of resident artists.  And a costume parade will conclude the fun at the end of the day.  This all happens on Saturday from 1-4pm.

Hansel & Gretel at the NationalThe free Saturday morning theatre fun continues. First up is Barrymore Eagle’s Costume Parade, so bring the kids in their charming or wild Halloween get-ups. Afterwards, kids will revel in the not-too-scary Brothers Grimm fairy tale, Hansel & Gretel, which is brought magically to life by the enchanting marionettes from Baltimore’s Black Cherry Puppet Theater. These performances at National Theatre take place at 9:30am and 11am, and tickets are required for admission. Free tickets are distributed half an hour prior to the start of shows on a first-come first-served basis. Only one ticket per person, and all attendees must be standing in line to receive a ticket. Children must be accompanied by an adult who remains present for the entire performance. Seating is limited, so get there early!

Go Nat Geo – Families can enjoy more than just  the aforementioned Halloween concert going on at the National Geographic Museum this weekend. On Sunday at 1pm, join Dig Deeper, a free archaeology workshop being presented in conjunction with the exhibition Anglo-Saxon Hoard: Gold from England’s Dark Ages. Email NatGeoMuseum@ngs.org to register.  And while you’re there, don’t miss Animal Grossology, a new exhibit for kids featuring some of the slimiest, stinkiest, yuckiest creatures on earth.  Admission to the exhibit is $8/adults, $6/ages 5-12, free for children 4 and under and includes the fun Weird But True exhibit as well as entrance to Ocean Soul: Photographs by Brian Skerry, a beautiful collection of images from oceans around the world that will captivate any photography buff or wildlife lover.

Take the FallThis is the last weekend for many area fall festivals, so if you still have yet to pick out pumpkins, zip down lofty slides, bounce on giant pillows, and have fun down on the farm, see this KFDC post to find out where you can go to squeeze it all in.  And if  you have been.. hey, go back for more!

Book it to the JCCEnjoy a morning of crafts, folktales, and fun with children’s book author Vicki Weber. Her award-winning book, It’s Too Crowded in Here!, is a collection of Jewsish folktales and midrashic stories enlivened by colorful illustrations.  The event starts at 10am and is part of the Jewish Literary Festival that runs through November 2. Admission to this Sunday’s family program is $10 and includes a copy of the book. 

Stage Delights – See Gustafer Yellowgold, the small, yellow, cone-headed fellow, who came to the Earth from the Sun, at Jammin’ Java.  Catch the final performances of Alladin’s Luck at Imagination Stage. Watch the Three Billy Goats Gruff on strings. These shows, plus a few more, will entertain audiences at local theatres this weekend.  This KFDC post has more details on all of them.

Potrait Story Days – Drop in at the National Portrait Gallery from 1-4pm on Saturday and Sunday to listen to a story about a person who has influenced American history and culture and to create a special piece of art. This weekend, learn about Girl Scouts founder, Juliette Gordon Low.

And as always, these posts are worth checking out once the forecast is firm:

The Best Places in the DC Area to Enjoy a Beautiful Day Outdoors With the Kids

Rainy Day Recreation (ie, Indoor Fun)



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Filed under All ages, Annual, Art, DC, Educational, Fall, Farm, Festival, Free, Halloween, Live Entertainment, Maryland, Museums, Music, Outdoor, Park, Seasonal, Theatre, Virginia, Weekend

Where to Play on the Weekdays: September 26-30

Visiting goats at the National Zoo's Kids Farm

Monday – Check out the brand spanking new imagiNATIONS Activity Center at the National Museum of the American Indian. Learn about Native people, history, and culture through interactive exhibits, stories, hands-on activities and more.  Open during museum hours, 10am – 5:30pm.

Tuesday  – Explore the grossest and weirdest of the animal world at the National Geographic Museum.  Two of their newest exhibits are right up kids’ alleys:  Animal Grossology  spotlights some of the “slimiest, stinkiest and downright yuckiest creatures on Earth,” while its companion exhibit Weird But True features the “wackiest, weirdest, and totally true facts about the animal world.” Both exhibits are included in museum admission – $8/adults, $6/ages 12-18, $4/ages 5-12, children under 5 are free.

Wednesday – Take advantage of smaller weekday crowds at one of several fall festivals that are already underway.  See this post to find out where you can celebrate the season.

Thursday – Discover the world of Amelia Earhart through an interactive puppet show presented by Discovery Theater at the National Air & Space Museum.  Showtimes are 10:15am, 11:15am, and 12:15pm.  Tickets range from $3-8. (Note: The show will also be performed on Friday at the same times.)

Friday – Spend the day at the National Zoo and be sure to check the Daily Programs schedule to help plan your visit. Admission to the Zoo is free, but parking is $15 for the first three hours, $20 for more than three.  You can save that by taking Metro to Woodley Park and walking a couple of blocks, or if you drive, you might get lucky and find parking along Connecticut Avenue or a side street.


Filed under All ages, Animals, DC, Educational, Fall, Farm, Festival, Live Entertainment, Museums, Outdoor, Seasonal, Theatre, Weekdays

Summer Shows

The school year is ending. The days are getting longer. The heat is on. Not that we even need an excuse, but this is all good motivation to check out some great productions at our local performing arts venues this summer. And there are plenty of live shows to see, both on stage now and in the coming months. Here’s the run-down of what’s playing.

The Puppet Co.
“Sleeping Beauty” is on the puppet stage now through July 25 at Glen Echo Park. After that, kids can catch “Little Red Riding Hood & The Three Little Pigs” from July 30 – September 5. Performances for both shows are every Thursday & Friday at 10am & 11:30am and Saturday & Sunday at 11:30am & 1pm. Tickets are $10 and can be purchased online, at the box office, or by calling 301.634-5380. Both are recommended for Pre-K and up.

And babies and toddlers haven’t been left out! The Puppet Co. has Tiny Tots performances for littler ones every Tuesday Wednesday and Saturday at 10am. The shows change frequently, so check out the schedule to see what’s playing on specific dates. Tickets are $5 per person, including babies, and can be purchased online, at the box office, or by calling 301.634-5380.

Imagination Stage
The pirate productions I posted about recently begin in just a couple of days at Imagination Stage in Bethesda. “How I Became a Pirate” is a musical adventure recommended for children ages 3 and up. The show will be running from June 23 – August 14, with show times on Saturdays and Sundays at 1:30pm & 4pm, and Tuesday – Friday at 10:30am. Tickets are $10 – $21 and available for purchase online here.

“Pirates! A Boy at Sea” is a pirate drama recommended for a slightly older crowd, ages 7 and up. It will be playing in the Lerner Family Theatre from July 2 – August 15. Show times are Saturdays and Sundays at 1:30pm & 4pm, and Tuesday – Friday at 10:30am. Tickets range from $10 – $21 and can be purchased online.

Children’s Theatre-in-the-Woods at Wolf Trap
Starting June 29, Wolf Trap will host six week’s worth of family-friendly shows on a stage nestled in a shady grove on 117 enchanting wooded acres. Performances, ranging from music and dance to puppetry and storytelling, will take place Tuesday – Saturday at 10am and 11:15am through August 7. See their calendar for the complete schedule of shows. Tickets for all performances are $8 and can be purchased online by clicking “more” on the calendar. Shows are recommended for kids kindergarten age and up.

Adventure Theatre
Also at Glen Echo Park, Adventure Theatre has a new play on the way. “If You Give a Pig a Pancake” will run from July 2 through August 15. The tale follows a little girl who plays hostess to a challenging piglet and all the debacles that arise along the way. Tickets are $15/adults and $12/children 12 and under. Reserve your seats online or by calling 301.634-2270.

Discovery Theater
Presented by the Smithsonian Associates, all kinds of acts are on the line-up at Discovery Theater this summer, from musical performers to tappers and breakdancers to a science circus. Next up is Granny’s Appalachian Tales, a fun mix of puppetry, music, and drama playing July 1-2. See the website for the complete summer schedule. All shows take place at the Ripley Center, accessed through the little copper-domed building just off Independence Avenue on Jefferson Drive, between the Smithsonian Castle and the Freer gallery of Art. General admission tickets are $6/adults, $5/children, free for kids 2 and under.

Mary Poppins
Every kid should know how to spell sing “Supercalifragilisticexpialidocious!” The tale of the nanny with the magical touch is a classic, and this particular production of the Broadway musical has gotten great reviews. “Mary Poppins” will be on stage at the Kennedy Center July 1 – August 22. I posted about this a couple of months ago, but if you haven’t gotten tickets yet, they are still available, ranging from $25 – $125.

Star Wars: in Concert
Fans young and old will be transported to another galaxy for two hours as an 86-member orchestra plays the “Star Wars” soundtrack accompanied by clips from the film classic displayed on a 60-foot wide screen. The show just started its national tour last week, and so far it’s gotten great reviews. It will land at the Verizon Center on July 17 for two shows, at 2pm and 7pm. Tickets range from $35 – $75 and can be purchased online.

Yo Gabba Gabba Live!
Get the sillies out this summer! DJ Lance Rock, Brobee, Foofa, Muno, Toodee, Plex, and other special guests are coming to the stage at Jiffy Lube Live (formerly Nissan Pavilion) on August 28 for two shows, at 2pm and 6pm. Tickets range from $35 – $55. Reserve your seats now.


Filed under All ages, Live Entertainment, Music, Summer, Theatre