Calling all curious kids and tiny travelers! Next month is your chance to experience European culture without a plane ticket. Kids Euro Fest, the wonderful annual event that presents art and cultural programs for children, is returning to the DC area!
Kids Euro Fest has become a tradition in the nation’s capital. For the last 14 years, it has been one of the largest performing arts festivals for children in America. Artists and performers from across the 27 European Union countries have participated, including puppeteers, dancers, musicians, and children’s book authors.
For the first time this year, Kids Euro Fest will feature two in-person Family Days located at two different embassies in Washington! The first will take place October 9 at the Embassy of France, and the second on October 16 at the Embassy of Sweden. From 12-4pm on both days, families are invited to enjoy an afternoon full of European performances, activities, crafts, games, and food.
The best part? Everything is FREE!
All kinds of fantastic cultural activities await: Kids can learn from a Latvian children’s book illustrator, catch an Irish dance performance, and make Portuguese art. A German theatre will transport young minds into a fairy tale, and France will get kids thinking about climate change. Throughout the day, kids can get creative at the craft table, take part in traditional European outdoor games, and indulge in food from the embassy’s own chef.
Health and safety precautions will be in place at both Family Days, including masks for kids ages 2-12. Activities will take place both indoors and outdoors with social distancing and limited attendance; therefore, families should be sure to register ahead of time on the KEF website.
For those outside of the DC area, Kids Euro Fest will also launch virtual activities on October 9. These include online performances, storytelling, films, and workshops.
To learn more about Kids Euro Fest events and register to attend the Family Days, visit Kidseurofest.org.
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This post is sponsored by the European Union Delegation to the United States, however, I only promote events, programs, and places that I genuinely believe in and think will appeal to KFDC readers. To learn about other Delegation events in the area, visit www.events.euintheus.org.
You don’t have to cross the pond to introduce your kids to European art and culture. Thanks to the European Union Delegation, European-American Cultural Foundation, 28 EU embassies, and more than 30 major cultural institutions, Europe is coming to us via the Kids Euro Festival, a virtual passport to two weeks of continental artistic adventures right here in DC!
Kicking off this Saturday, October 21, and running through November 5, the 10th Annual Festival will present more than 80 FREE children’s performances and adventures all around the DC-Metro area. Concerts, workshops, movies, storytelling, puppetry, dance, magic, and cinema are all among the offerings. And museums, public libraries, movie theaters, EU embassies, arts and cultural organizations, the Kennedy Center, and other local theatres are some of the many performance venues.
The festival, designed for children ages 2-12, is the largest of its kind in the U.S. Most countries in the European Union are represented in shows and workshops that highlight national cultural traditions and art.
Visit the Kids Euro Festival website for the complete schedule of performances and age recommendations. You can also follow on Facebook for event updates and more info.
How about some cultural adventures for the kids of the European variety? Thanks to the 8th Annual Kids Euro Festival they will be aplenty — and you don’t need passports or money to experience them.
From October 24 through November 8, the Festival will present more than 125 FREE family-friendly, Euro-themed events all around the DC-metro area. Dancers, storytellers, musicians, films, and puppeteers are just a few of the exciting acts on the schedule. DC embassies, The Kennedy Center, National Gallery of Art, Sidney Harman Hall, public libraries, Hill Center, and Strathmore Mansion are among the many performance venues.
The festival, designed for kids ages 2-12, is the largest of its kind in the country. All 28 nations in the European Union are represented in the shows that highlight national cultural traditions and art.
In case you haven’t heard, there’s this rally thing happening on the Mall tomorrow. It’s supposed to be a pretty big deal and, word has it, thousands of people will be attending. If you don’t plan to be among them and want to avoid the crowds and clogged metro in that part of town while you hang with the kids, here are some suggestions for family fun off the rally route.
Justin Roberts at National Geographic Live
When I first heard about this event, I thought I wasn’t familiar with Justin Roberts’ music. But as I listened to a few of his tunes, I realized the kids and I had been rocking out to some of his songs for years via the kids’ Sirius Radio station we listen to often. So, I feel okay about recommending the National Geographic Live! show he’s playing tomorrow, October 30. Seats are still available for both the 12pm and 3pm shows. Tickets are $16, $12/kids 12 and under and can be purchased through the National Geographic website or at the door. (And PS – While you’re there, check out the Geckos and Wild Music exhibits!)
Kids Euro Festival
There’s just a little over a week left to catch some performances of Kids Euro Fest, the month-long showcase of European art and culture for children. This weekend you and the kids can take in shadow puppetry from Poland and stage performances from Germany and Slovakia. Check the schedule for times and note that some of the shows require reservations, though admission is free for all.
KIDS: Room to Play – Build Your Own Infrastructure
I’m going to avoid a bad Ikea joke and just give you the description straight from the website about the KIDS: Room to Play exhibit taking place at House of Sweden through December 5: ‘Build a skyscraper, construct a highway, launch a ship and play in Pippi Longstocking’s house. We provide the building blocks, vehicles, toys, etc – you provide the imagination. Kids of all ages are invited to House of Sweden to build their own world of tomorrow!’ The exhibit will be open Saturdays 11am – 4pm and Sundays: 12pm to 5pm.
Smithsonian Sans Crowds
Needless to say, it might be best to leave the museum-going on the Mall to another weekend. But you can still enjoy a Smithsonian kids’ fave – the National Zoo is far enough up town, and with splendid fall weather in the weekend forecast, it’ll be a great time to pay the animals a visit. Don’t miss the recently opened Elephant Trail and be sure to check the daily schedule to see what’s going on when you visit.
Fall on the Farm
Whether you’re still looking for the perfect pumpkin or just want to visit a farm that sounds like something out of a storybook, head to Clark’s Elioak Farm in Ellicott City, Maryland. While the kids and I have yet to visit ourselves (we’re heading there today on the day off from school), you can read a nice description of the farm here. Admission if $5/person, and hayrides, pony rides, and the cow train are $2/each. Open 10am – 5:30pm (last admission is 4pm) seven days a week through November 7.
The newly formed Walking Shtick Tours is offering a kids version of their Haunted Hill tour on Sunday, October 31, at 1pm. The hour-long walk around Capitol Hill is geared for kids ages 8 and up, but younger children tagging along with siblings will fare fine. The tour meets at Eastern Market Metro near the Barracks Row historical sign. Cost for the special kids tour is $20/family (regular tours are $15/person) and reservations are requested but not required. Visit the Walking Shtick Tours website to make a reservation and learn more about the tours.
As any good mom (or PTA member) would do, I’m starting this post on weekend activities with a plug for an event at my son’s school. And I do this without guilt, because I know it’s going to be a few solid hours of fun for the whole family.
Maury Elementary will be holding its annual Fall Festival tomorrow, October 23, from 10am – 2pm. Come partake in arts & crafts for kids, face painting, games, food, cake walks every 10 minutes, a costume parade at 1pm (come dressed!), a dunk tank, and a cook-off with judging and sampling. Tickets will be available for purchase to redeem for activities and food (costs are fairly minimal). If you’re in the Capitol Hill neighborhood, come check it out. Maury is located at 1250 Constitution Avenue NE.
And now onto the rest of the weekend round-up. Here’s a quick list of links for posted events with a few more ideas for recreation with the kids to follow.
The Pirates of Penzance
The Washington Savoyards, deemed the light opera company of DC, is performing Gilbert & Sullivan’s “The Pirates of Penzance” starting tomorrow, October 23, at the Atlas Theatre on H Street NE. Word from my local parents’ group is that the show is appropriate for grade school-aged kids and should be a good time for the family. The play runs through November 7. Tickets range from $15 – $45 and can be purchased through the website.
Air & Scare
Get a head start on Halloween and discover the spooky side of air and space at the Steven F. Udvar-Hazy Center’s Sixth Annual Air & Scare on Saturday, October 23, from 2 – 8pm. Kids are encouraged to arrive in costume for creepy crafts, eerie science experiments, and other Halloween-themed activities. Story time and dress-up will be awaiting little ones in the Tot Zone. And guests can complement their garb at a face painting station, then pose for a photo with their favorite Star Wars characters. The event is free, though parking is $15. Visit the Air & Space website for directions to the Steven F. Udvar-Hazy Center.
It’s the Great Pumpkin…
If you still need the goods to carve some jack o’ lanterns, head to a local patch for some pumpkin picking. This is a repeat suggestion from me, but a relevant one until Halloween has past. See this post on peach picking for farm suggestions — all of these places are onto their autumnal harvests. You can also check out this post for farms holding annual fall festivals. Most have pumpkins for the picking as well.
Family Movie Time
Here’s a great way to wind down the weekend. Every Sunday evening from 5 – 9pm is Family Night at Old Arlington Grill. Films geared toward ages 3-10 play on the large screen, so kids are entertained while parents enjoy dinner. Admission is free; the only cost is the meal. Old Arlington Grill is located at 2903 Columbia Pike in Arlington.