Tag Archives: Kids Activities in Virginia

Where to Play on the Weekdays: August 13-17

Turtle sighting at Huntley Meadows Park


Monday – Walk among hundreds of butterflies at Brookside Garden’s “Wings of Fancy” exhibit.  Witness the butterfly life cycle and see species from North America, Central America, and Asia. Certifikid currently has a great deal on admission to the exhibit: $6 for one adult and one child on a weekday visit (regularly $6/adult, $4/ages 3-12, free for 2 and under). Wings of Fancy is open 10am – 4pm through September 16, but the Brookside grounds are open sunrise to sunset, and the conservatories 10am – 5pm.  I highly recommend touring them all!

Tuesday – Head to the Washington Harbour where the weekly Harbour Kids series will feature Crooked Landing from 10:30am – 12pm.  And be sure to make time for some play in the sprays next door at Georgetown Waterfront Park.

Wednesday – Rock out with a local kids’ fave at Jammin’ Java. Rocknoceros is playing their weekly show there at 10:30am. Tickets are $5 and only available at the door.

Thursday – Explore the woods and wetlands of Huntley Meadows Park in Alexandria. Turtles, frogs, and herons are among the wildlife you’re likely to see. Stop by the nature center for even more exhibits and animal encounters. Hat and sunblock recommended. Admission is free.  Look for more about the park in this post.

Friday – Catch a free screening of One World, One Sky: Big Bird’s Adventure at the Einstein Planetarium in the National Air & Space museum.  Showtime is 10:30am every Friday  (and the first consecutive Saturday and Sunday of every month). It only lasts about 20 minutes, so check out the exhibits and discover How Things Fly while you’re there.


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Filed under All ages, Animals, DC, Educational, Exhibit, Free, Live Entertainment, Maryland, Movies, Museums, Outdoor, Park, Seasonal, Summer, Virginia, Weekdays

The Weekend Round-Up: June 22-24

View of the Anacostia from Yards Park, where Friday evening concerts take place all summer


It’s official: Summer is here! The solstice has passed, camp is well underway, vacations have begun, and the heat… oh, the heat. Luckily, we’ll be getting a respite from the soaring temps to make this weekend’s many outdoor activities enjoyable, and there are several events happening inside, too. Whatever you do, stay cool and have fun. Happy Weekend!

Lovin’ Summer
Where: Throughout the area
When: All weekend long
Admission: Varies by activity
Seize the season with a host of activities that only occur this time of year. Enjoy an open air concert at one of several series in the area. Stay cool under the sun at an outdoor pool, sprayground, or water park. Ride mini-trains and carousels at local parks. And much, much more. Find details on all these summer pursuits here.

Heritage Days
Where: Various locales in Montgomery County
When: Saturday & Sunday, 12-4pm
Admission: Free
Celebrate the history, culture, and natural beauty of Montgomery County, MD, as more than 30 historic sites welcome visitors for guided tours, re-creations of historic events, children’s activities, and more — all free of charge. Be sure to check the list of places on the website, as some are only participating for one day.

Barbeque Battle
Where: Pennsylvania Avenue, 9th – 14th Streets
When: Saturday 11am – 10pm, Sunday 11am – 7:30pm
Admission: $12/adults, $5/ages 6-12, free for 5 and under
Nothing says summer like a good barbeque, and you can experience the area’s biggest one at the annual Safeway National Barbeque Battle this weekend. Top BBQ-ers from all over the country will cook for grilling glory (and $40,000 in prizes), and the public is invited to watch it all go down. There will also be cooking demos, children’s activities, interactive cooking displays, and more. Oh, and food… lots of food.

Best in Shows
Where: Local Theatres
When: Throughout the Weekend
Admission: Varies by venue
If You Give a Moose a Muffin opens at Adventure Theatre today, and tickets are still available for Saturday and Sunday shows. The Lion, The Witch, and The Wardrobe just began a summer run at Imagination Stage. Goldilocks! is still at The Puppet Co. (get discount tickets here) and Tiny Tots shows will be performed this weekend as well . The Creative Opera Ensemble’s version of Hansel and Gretel is this week’s Saturday Morning at the National show. And curtains will close on Beauty and the Beast at the National Theatre after Sunday’s performances.

Del Ray Music Festival
Where: Mt. Vernon Recreation Center Fields
When: Saturday, 10am – 10pm
Admission: Free
Head to Alexandria to celebrate the rich diversity and talent of the Del Ray neigborhood with a day full of music and fun. Along with a varied line-up of live entertainment, the Festival will also feature food, games, and a chance to ring in the summer with the community.

Choctaw Days Festival
Where: National Museum of the American Indian
When: Friday & Saturday,10am – 5:30pm
Admission: Free
Celebrate a native culture at the American Indian Museum, where the festivals are always wonderful, imo. See traditional performances in the Potomac Atrium, enjoy storytelling programs, view art displays, watch tribal cooking demos, and more. While you’re at the museum, take the kids to the imagiNATIONS Activity Center for even more hands-on fun.

Skate of the Union
Where: RFK Stadium, Lot 7 & Chantilly, VA
When: Saturday & Sunday
Admission: Varies by activity (free to spectate)
Skate or spectate at the country’s premiere all-skating event happening here in the DC area all weekend! There will be skating activities for all types of wheels – inline, roller, and skateboard – and ability levels, from beginner clinics and demos to professional competitive races. You can also just go to watch others roll. Visit the website for the event schedule and to register for races.

Alexandria Food & Wine Festival
Where: John Carlyle Square
When: Saturday, 12-5pm
Admission: Free
It may sound like a grown-up event – and the main activity is, for the most part – but there will be activities for little ones, too. The festival will showcase some of the best of Alexandria’s restaurants and Virginia wineries. And to complement it all will be live entertainment, a children’s corner (moon bounce, face painting, and more), and cooking demos. While admission is free, you will need to purchase tickets to sample food and wine – $20 per ticket book, $10 for the wine garden. John Carlyle Square is located at 300 John Carlyle Street in Alexandria.

Thai Village
Where: Grace Church in Georgetown
When: Saturday, 12-6pm
Admission: Free
Join the Royal Thai Embassy to celebrate the 2nd Annual Thai Village in Georgetown. This year marks the 50th anniversary of the joining of Washington, DC, and Bangkok, Thailand as sister cities. Enjoy Thai cuisine, culture, and musical performances by Thai artists from DC metro and New York.There is no entrance fee, but food and drinks will be available for purchase. Grace Church is located at 1021 Wisconsin Avenue NW, across the street from the Royal Thai Embassy.

Bowie Baysox Star Wars Saturday
Where: Prince George’s Stadium
When: Saturday, 6:35pm (gates open at 5:35pm)
Admission: Tickets start at $7
The Bowie Baysox will be in the center of an intergalactic conflict when the team hosts Star Wars Night on Saturday, as the Baysox take on the Reading. The event will feature characters in movie-quality replica costumes, lightsaber battles, droids, pre and postgame performances, and a fireworks extravaganza after the Jedi Knights and Sith Lords have a final showdown. Fans are welcome to come in costume, too! Get directions to Prince George’s Stadium here.

Civil War Vintage Baseball Day
Where: Caffi Field
When: Saturday, 11am – 5pm
Admission: Free
Take a trip back in time and watch a how a Civil War game became America’s favorite pastime. Tournament games will match up the Elkton Eclipse, Chesapeake Nine, and the Old Dominions of Northern Virginia, and skills classes welcome children ages 6-12 after the games. Guests can also experience what life was like during the Civil War era through nearby living history encampments. Caffi Field is located at 120 Cherry Street SE in Vienna, Va.

Military Mail Family Day
Where: National Postal Museum
When: Saturday, 12-3:30pm
Admission: Free
It’s a Family Day at the museum dedicated to all things mail. At this one, make a card for military personnel serving our country, learn about V-Mail in World War II, make a stamp collection, and explore the Mail Call exhibit with a fun scavenger hunt. At 2p, guests can also take a fun, easy swing dance mini-lesson with David Norton, dance instructor from Joy of Motion Dance Center.

Congressional Stamp Show
Where: Rayburn House Office Building Foyer
When: Sunday (thru Tuesday), 9am – 5pm
Admission: Free
There’s more mail related fun at the Congressional Stamp Show taking place on Sunday (and through Tuesday, June 26). The Smithsonian’s National Postal Museum, StampCamp USA, and the American Philatelic Society are hosting the second free Congressional Stamp Show. Featuring a display of items from the personal stamp collections of Members of Congress, the exhibition is free and open to the public. Both non-collectors and collectors, young and old are welcome, and there will be a special area dedicated to children with activities designed to stimulate and educate.

SunWise, Imagination Playground, and More
Where: National Children’s Museum Launch Zone
When: Saturday & Sunday
Admission: Free

Drop in at the NCM’s Launch Zone at National Harbor for a variety of activities happening this weekend. On Saturday, join a program designed to encourage kids to be “sun wise” this summer or see a production of “Princess Sunni’s Birthday.” On Sunday, let imagination guide kids as they build castles, pirate ships and more out of foam blocks and loose parts in the Imagination Playground.

Family Fun and Fit Day
Where: Kaiser Permanente Gaithersburg Medical Center
When: Saturday, 10am – 2pm
Admission: Free
Kaiser Permanente is hosting a Community Family Fun and Fit Day at the new Gaithersburg Medical Center, and everyone is welcome to join. Fin activities to entertain and delight everyone in the family — live musical theater for kids, a DJ, face painting, obstacle courses, giveaways and prizes, health and nutrition booths, refreshments, and much more!

Inova Loudoun Hospital Centennial Celebration
Where: Ida Lee Park Festival Field
When: Saturday, 12-4pm
Admission: Free
Inova Loudoun Hospital will celebrate 100 years of serving the health care needs of the community in Leesburg this weekend, and the public is invited to the free fun, family day. The event will have an early 1900’s flair, plus a variety of activities including jugglers, stilt walkers, a caricature artist, rock wall, and a teddy bear clinic. There will be appearances by a period impersonator and sports mascots as well as exhibitors, a photo booth, and giveaways while supplies last. Activities are free, and carnival food will be available for purchase.



Filed under All ages, Annual, Class, Competition, DC, Eats, Educational, Exhibit, Festival, Free, Live Entertainment, Maryland, Museums, Music, Outdoor, Park, Play, Seasonal, Sports, Summer, Theatre, Virginia, Weekend

The Weekend Round-Up: June 15-17

Celebrating this guy this weekend


We couldn’t ask for a better weekend to celebrate Dad! School is out, cranking relaxation mode into high gear. The weather gods clearly are in a glorious mood. And there are events going on that will surely make the old man’s day: Sailabration in Baltimore, Juneteenth in DC, big games at the ballpark, tons of summer activities, fun on the farm, trucks, and much more.  This round-up has all the details, and you can find even more great ways to seize the beautiful days in this post about outdoor recreation. (For indoor options, go here.)  Happy Weekend! And Happy Father’s Day to all the dads!

Star-Spangled Sailabration
Where: Baltimore Inner Harbor
When: All Weekend
Admission: Free
If there’s any main event this weekend, this is it. More than 40 tall ships and naval vessels are sailing into Baltimore to commemorate the Bicentennial of the War of 1812 and the Star-Spangled Banner.  The celebration will include free tours of the ships, waterside festivities, an airshow featuring the Blue Angels (see viewing locations here), and the world-premiere of “Overture for 2012,” composed by Philip Glass – for specifics, see the schedule here.  With a beautiful weekend in store, this is guaranteed to draw big crowds, so plan accordingly. For parking tips, see this guide from the Washington Post.

Juneteenth Family Day
Where: American Art Museum
When: Saturday, 11:30am – 3pm
Admission: Free
Join the American Art Museum, National Portrait Gallery, and Anacostia Community Museum as they mark the arrival of news of the abolition of slavery in the United States. Events include historical re-enactors, a reading of the Emancipation Proclamation, storytelling, live music by Follow the Drinking Gourd, craft-making activities in the Kogod Courtyard.

Father’s Day at Mount Vernon
Where: Mount Vernon Estate & Gardens
When: Saturday & Sunday, 8am – 5pm
Admission: $15/adult, $7/ages 6-11, free for ages 5 and under
Spend the day with the Father of our Country! This weekend, the entrance fee for dads will include a meet-and-greet with “General Washington” as well as complimentary admission to George Washington’s Distillery & Gristmill, located three miles from the estate on Route 235 South.

Truck Touch
Where: RFK Stadium , Lot 7
When: Saturday, 9am – 2pm
Admission: Free
Kids love these events where they can explore some of the coolest wheels on the road. The District of Columbia Government invites the public to do just that at RFK Stadium, Lot 7. A host of DC government agencies will present and demonstrate nearly 30 vehicles used to clean and repair streets, change traffic lights, collect refuse, clear snow, provide emergency services, administer mobile health care and more. Kids can climb aboard, work the gears, honk the horn, and have a blast.

Summer Fun
Where: All around the area
When: Throughout the weekend
Admission: Varies by activity
Get your summer on this weekend with a host of activities exclusive to this time of year — outdoor swimming, spray ground play, concerts under the stars, movies al fresco. Go here for the full scoop on these joys of summer.

Become a Pilot Family Day
Where: Steven F. Udvar-Hazy Center
When: Saturday, 10am – 3pm
Admission: Free, but parking is $15
Visit the Dulles branch of the Air & Space Museum for the eighth annual Become a Pilot Day at the Steven F. Udvar-Hazy Center. See 50 visiting vintage, recreational, military, and homebuilt aircraft, on display outside the Center for one day only. Talk to pilots and find out what skills are needed to fly. Inside the Center, test your piloting skills in flight simulators, talk to aviation experts, and enjoy story time and hands-on activities with the kids.

Savage Gardens Family Festival
Where: U.S. Botanic Garden
When: Saturday, 10am – 3pm
Admission: Free
Celebrate the wild and wonderful world of carnivorous plants during this fun family festival! Stroll along the Terrace and explore. Make your own wearable bog, learn about Darwin and his experiments with carnivorous plants, help with a bug release and craft your own Venus flytrap. Do all this and more while investigating the amazing world of plants that need to “eat” bugs to survive. Read a KFDC review of the exhibit here.

Nats vs. Yankees
Where: Nationals Park
When: Friday 7:05pm, Saturday 1:05pm, Sunday 1:35pm
Admission: Tickets start at $10
The Nats are hosting the Yankees this weekend, with an evening game tonight and afternoon match-ups Saturday and Sunday. Take Dad out to the ballgame on Sunday,and stay after for Kids Run the Bases when children ages 4-12 can loop the in field after the final out.

Seeing the Sea Family Workshop
Where: Corcoran Gallery
When: Saturday, 10:30am – 12pm
Admission: $8/members, $10/non-members
Discover how artists have strived to capture the beauty, mystery, and danger of the ocean throughout history. In the galleries, guests can see what goes into an ocean scene and then sketch the elements they like best. In the studio, families will create their own seascapes.

Artomatic Kids Workshops
Where: 1851 S. Bell Street, Crystal City
When: Sunday, various times
The month-long art event featuring work by more than 1300 artists, performers, musicians, filmmakers, fashion designers, and creatives of all kinds has some Kids Workshops happening this weekend. On Sunday, they can enjoy international storytelling with Abdul Rahim 12-1:30pm, Fun with Nature: Science Illustrations with Virginia Selz 2-3pm, and Color Theory & Abstract Art with Ja’Ski 3-5pm. Go here to reserve spots in the workshops.

Wheat Harvest
Where: Claude Moore Colonial Farm
When: Saturday, 10am – 4:30pm
Admission: $3/adults, $2/child, free for ages 3 and under
Planted in early fall, the wheat and rye are finally ready for harvest at the farm straight out of the 18th century. And you can watch the farmer and his neighbors cut the grain, then join them to bind and stack the crop. Find out why more and more of the farmer’s neighbors are growing wheat as a cash crop in addition to tobacco. At the Farm house, lend a hand churning butter, and learn how the farm wife bakes wheat bread.

Family Fun Day
Where: Arcadia Farms
When: Saturday, 1-5pm
Admission: $5
Take the family to an end-of-spring celebration on farm that’s part of the Woodlawn Estate for a day full of fun, hands-on activities. Meet the chickens, play farm-based games, and enjoy face painting, arts & crafts, and demos by professional chefs, and more. Produce will be available for purchase produce from Arcadia’s Mobile Market.

Show Time
Where: Local Theatres
When: Throughout the weekend
Admission: Varies be venue
Beauty and the Beast, the smash Broadway hit, is the big show this weekend, on stage at the National Theatre. At the same venue, catch this week’s Saturday Morning at the National show, The Recycling Pirate presented by the Goodlife Theater Company. Goldilocks! and Tiny Tots shows are at The Puppet Co.  Follow the links for more details and tickets.

Father’s Day Putt Putt & Fish-a-Rama Competition
Where: Great Country Farms
When: Saturday & Sunday, 9am – 6pm
Admission: $10/child, $12/adult
Treat Dad to a fun filled weekend with BBQ, Putt-Putt, and catch and release fishing at the Bluemont, Virginia far, While you’re out there, kids can have a blast in the five-acre play area. The Roosteraunt will also be serving up ice cold drinks and featuring our all- natural BBQ sandwiches with classic coleslaw, burgers and hot dogs.

DC Solare Flare
Where: H. D. Woodson High School
When: Saturday, 9am – 4:30pm
Admission: Free
DC Solar United Neighborhoods and the Ward 7 Solar Cooperative present this expo featuring sustainable energy and green living exhibitors; science activities for kids; solar and clean energy workshops and speakers; films; EV demonstrations; a solar homes tour; and projects with Woodson High Science, Technology, Engineering and Math classes — including a solarized exhibit tent, solar cooking and a solar-powered WiFi network.



Filed under All ages, Annual, Art, DC, Educational, Exhibit, Farm, Free, Holidays, Live Entertainment, Maryland, Museums, Outdoor, Seasonal, Sports, Spring, Summer, Theatre, Virginia, Weekend

Where to Play on the Weekdays: June 11-15

Peering into a lifeboat replica (used in the movie) at National Geographic's Titanic exhibit


Monday – Discover history through art at the National Portrait Gallery. Children up to age 5 are invited to become Young Portrait Explorers and learn about the work of Isamu Noguchi, one of the 20th century’s most important sculptors, and participate in a related hands-on activity. The program runs from 10:30-11:30am.  Admission is free, but registration is required — go here to sign up.

Tuesday – See the Titanic exhibit at the National Geographic Museum.  Lots of cool displays and interactives will fascinate kids and adults alike. Open 10am – 6pm. Admission is $8/adults, $6/ages 5-12, free for ages 4 and under.

Wednesday – Rock out with a local kids’ fave at Jammin’ Java. Rocknoceros is playing their weekly Wednesday show at 10:30am. Tickets are $5 and available at the door.

Thursday – Hike along the Potomac, see nature indoors and out, have a picnic, and hang out and relax at Riverbend Park. The Fairfax County locale makes for an ideal outing with little ones — easy trails, great nature viewing, and never a big crowd. The Visitor Center is open 9am – 5pm on weekdays. Read about Not-So-SAHM’s recent adventures at the park.

Friday – Catch a free screening of One World, One Sky: Big Bird’s Adventure at the Einstein Planetarium in the National Air & Space museum.  Showtime is 10:30am every Friday  (and the first consecutive Saturday and Sunday of every month). It only lasts about 20 minutes, so check out the exhibits and discover How Things Fly while you’re there.

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Filed under All ages, Art, DC, Educational, Exhibit, Free, Maryland, Movies, Museums, Outdoor, Park, Play, Virginia, Weekdays