Tag Archives: Glen Echo

All Play this Labor Day Weekend

A summer favorite: Playing in the sprays at The Yards Park

Forget what the calendar says.  If back-to-school didn’t bring about the mental end of the season, this weekend certainly will. But the upside is that we have three glorious days to squeeze the last bit of juice out of summer.  And if you’re spending them in town, you’ve got a variety of ways to get the most out of ’em.  Happy Weekend!

The Big DigGreat Country Farm’s annual Potato Harvest is on Saturday and Sunday from 9am – 5pm. Take the scenic drive out to the foothills of the Blue Ridge Mountains early for all-you-can-eat pancakes topped with homemade fruit syrups, then hop on a hayride that will take you out to u-pick fields where you can dig for gold — yukon gold potatoes, that is. Breakfast is served from 9am – 12pm, and the hayrides run all day, but the fun doesn’t have to stop there. The $10 admission (free for kids under 2) also includes access to the rest of the farm’s attractions, including a cow train, mazes, barnyard petting area, pick your own fields, and more. Visit the website for more information and directions.

The Ol’ Ballgame The Nats are playing at home all weekend, with a few special promos and ticket deals for fans. Saturday is team on field photo day, where fans will have the opportunity to go to the warning track to get pictures of team players from 4:30 – 5:45pm. Sunday is $1 Kids Day – as implied, kids’ tickets are just a buck with the purchase of an adult ticket, and the first 10,000 fans ages 12 and under to arrive will receive a Ryan Zimmerman Fathead Jr. It’s also a Signature Sunday and Kids Run the Bases.  For more details and ticket deals for later games, see this post from a couple of days ago.

Ren FestIf Hurricane Irene thwarted your plans for merriment last weekend, you can try again this Saturday through Monday (and subsequent weekends until October 23) at the annual Maryland Renaissance Festival in Crownsville, MD. Besides the amazing variety of entertainment — jousting matches, cheeky comedy shows, fire eaters and sword swallowers, juggling acts, Celtic music, and much more — walking among knights, maidens, pirates, and villagers in puffy shirts in a 16th-century village as you chomp on turkey legs and down cups of mead is an interesting little jaunt back in time that any age can enjoy (well, maybe not the mead). Admission to the faire is $19/adult, $9/kids ages 7-15, free for children 6 and under. A coupon for a discount on tickets is available through September 11  – see this post from last week for details.

Maloof Money Cup Skateboarding EventAny Tony Hawk wannabes out there?  Skaters-in-the-making will be stoked about this event happening on Saturday and Sunday from 10am – 6pm at RFK Stadium, where a new world-class skatepark is currently under construction. See some of the world’s best skateboarders perform ollies, flips, and other cool tricks as they compete for the Maloof Money Cup. Tickets are $15/day or $25 for both days. Oh, and Doug E. Fresh is performing on Sunday at 2:45pm…La Di Da Di, we like to party, we don’t cause trouble, don’t bother nobody (couldn’t help myself).

Adventure Theatre Open House – Head to the children’s theatre at Glen Echo Park for a day full of fun and entertainment for the family. Enjoy a reading of the upcoming shows’ books by local celebrities and national authors, free light sabre class demos, a visit from a pirate, book signings, and more from 10am – 4pm on Saurday. Check out the schedule for specifics. And be sure to stick around Glen Echo after for the annual Labor Day Art Show taking place throughout the park all weekend, including Monday.

Outdoor Concerts – Get the weekend started with free music in the fresh air at an outdoor concert. Jazz violinst Bruno Nasta and the U.S. Naval Academy Band-The Next Wave will entertain at Jazz in the Garden at 5:30pm, and the modern rock band Rise and Fall will play on the boardwalk stage at The Yards Park at 6pm. The al fresco music continues over the weekend at the DC Blues Festival on Saturday and the annual Labor Day Concert at the Capitol on Sunday (see below for details on both).

Peter PanVenture to Never Never Land at Wolf Trap as Tony Award-nominee Cathy Rigby takes flight in an all-new production of Peter Pan.  On stage through Sunday, you can catch an afternoon or evening performance.  Tickets range from $20-80, but Goldstar currently has a deal for 50% off select seats. Find out what else you can see on local stages this weekend, including the final performances of The Wizard off Oz at The Puppet Co., in this post about live entertainment.

RiverFestDiscover 101 ways to protect and enjoy our waterways during RiverFest 2011 at Historic St. Mary’s City on Saturday from 10am – 5pm. Festivities will live entertainment, paddling and sailing jaunts on the river, face painting, balloon art, educational exhibits, and more. Admission is free.  Visit the website for complete info.

Hear the BluesThe 23nd Annual DC Blues Festival is on Saturday at Carter Barron Amphitheater in Rock Creek Park. The free concert runs from 12pm – 7:30pm.  Along with the line-up of performers, there will be musical workshops throughout the day, where both children and adults can learn about Blues music. Kids will especially enjoy the opportunity to try making their own music at an instrument petting zoo.

Labor Day Concert at the CapitolNSO Associate Conductor Emil de Cou leads this annual NSO tradition on the West Lawn of the U.S. Capitol. The free concert takes place on Sunday at 8pm, with gates opening to the public at 3:15pm. If not raining, the dress rehearsal is at 3:30pm on Sunday.  In the case of inclement weather, the concert will be moved to the Kennedy Center Concert Hall. You can call the NSO Summer Concert Hotline at 202.416.8114 after 2:30pm to find out if the performance has been moved.

These go-to posts have even more ideas:

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, DC, Farm, Festival, Holidays, Live Entertainment, Maryland, Museums, Music, Outdoor, Park, Seasonal, Summer, Theatre, Weekend

Review: Snow White and the 7 Dwarves at The Puppet Co.

A fairtytale moment for the kids

Before I took my kids to see The Puppet Co.’s latest main stage production, Snow White and the 7 Dwarves, I knew we were in for treat. Besides the fact that we’ve never been disappointed by a performance there, the description of the show promised their “usual sideways view of a popular story,” which I appreciate just as much as the incredible craftsmanship of the puppets.

It’s one thing to bring a classic fairytale to life on stage and quite another to modify a well-known tale with updated values and small plot tweaks that appeal to both kids and adults. The Puppet Co. does it wonderfully in Snow White, with subtle changes that heighten the magic for little ones and keep it interesting for grown-ups.

The title itself holds a clue about the production’s slight divergences from the original. The Tolkien spelling of “dwarves” is an indication that the differences are linked to the little guys. Each dwarf has a unique feature that gives him a special ability — a large nose has a super sense of smell, huge ears can hear the farthest sounds.  Adding these characteristics are a small change that convey a greater message of looking beyond the surface to see what makes someone special. And the friendships of the dwarves, both among each other and with Snow White, are meant to be an example of how teamwork can make all challenges easier.

It’s not just the story that makes for a great show, the execution of the production is remarkable as well. Both people and puppets play significant roles, and the actors have more than just one part. Snow White and the queen are played by the same woman, the prince also voices several dwarves, and the evil woman (played by a man) is a puppet master behind the scenes as well. (Let me note that I learned this on a post-show backstage tour; on stage, it all comes off seamlessly and magically.)

Director Allan Stevens with one of the dwarves

And, of course, special mention must be made about the puppets and set. The marionettes capture all the whimsy and magic of a fairytale, while displaying the amazing artistry of their makers. Amid a set composed of a large circle (used as the queen’s mirror, the dwarves cottage, and the forest) with digital images projected through it to set the scene, it’s a wonderful presentation of a timeless tale.

Snow White and the 7 Dwarves is playing at The Puppet Co. at Glen Echo Park through June 2. The show is 40 minutes long and recommended for ages 5 and up (my 5-year-old loved it; my 2-year-old got a little antsy mid-way through). Tickets are $10 (children under 2 are free) and can be purchased online or at the box office.


Filed under Gradeschoolers, Live Entertainment, Preschoolers, Theatre