Tag Archives: Pentagon Row

Here Comes Chanukah!

Lighting the first candle on the menorah


As joyous and exciting as the holidays are, they can be a bit tricky in our household. As an interfaith family, we celebrate both Chanukah and Christmas, which is a thrill for the kids (more days to get presents!), but somewhat of a challenge for my husband and me as parents. It’s important to us that we expose Owen and Sasha to both of our religions and their associated holidays and traditions. The dicey part is balancing the two, especially during this time of year.

I know I’m stating the obvious when I say that Christmas is far more ubiquitous than Chanukah. Writing about holiday performances in the area a couple of weeks ago was a good indicator – out of 13 shows listed, only one, “Seasons of Light” at Discovery Theater, touches on the Festival of Lights.

But while Chanukah events may be fewer and farther between than Santa-focused activities, they are happening. And with the eight crazy nights (had to include props to Adam Sandler) starting in just over a week, I’ve compiled a list of where and when you can celebrate them.

Chanukah on the Elipse
Taking place on the first day of Chanukah, the National Menorah Lighting is sure to be a memorable start to the eight days of observance. Along with the illumination of the candles, guests will be treated to a special performance by reknowned violinist Itzhak Pearlman. The family celebration also includes music by Dreidelman and the Macabees, menorahs and dreidel kits, and latkes and donuts. The ceremony begins at 4pm on Wednesday, December 1. Tickets are free, but required – sign up on the website for a chance to receive them.

Chanukah on Ice
Celebrate the second night of Chanukah with a giant menorah lighting, holiday treats, raffles, and ice skating! The ice rink at Pentagon Row will be the sight of the family fun happening from 6pm – 8:30pm. Admission is $10 in advance, $12/door. Ice skate rentals are included, but food will be sold separately. Purchase advance tickets online. Pentagon Row is located at 1201 South Joyce Street in Arlington.

Shalom Sesame Chanukah Celebration
The JCC of Greater Washington is celebrating Chanukah on Saturday, December 4, with lots of latkes, loads of fun, and the premiere screening of “Chanukah: The Missing Menorah,” a new series from the creators of Sesame Street (see description below). The fun includes a Sesame moon bounce, candle making, face painting, and relay races. The will end with a raffle for tickets to Sesame Place: Where Sesame Street Comes Alive! The event takes place from 6pm – 7:30pm. Tickets are $7 per person (or family maximum $20) and can be purchased at the door. The JCC of Greater Washington is located at 6125 Montrose Road in Rockville.

“Chanukah: The Missing Menorah” finds Grover in a tizzy when his special friend gets caught in a game of tag with a chicken and loses her special menorah… just as Chanukah is about to begin! Can her friends find the missing menorah in time?

Chanukah Wonderland
If you can’t make it to the Chanukah ice skating party at Pentagon Row or want to enjoy a little more holiday gliding, there will be more celebrating on ice in Silver Spring on Sunday, December 5. From 10am – 5:30pm, there will be all kinds of holiday activities – oil making, candle dipping, crafts, jewelry making, and more. Music and ice skating begins at 3:30 along with latkes, gelt and other treats. The early activities are free; the ice skating portion is $8. The event takes place at the new Silver Spring Civic Building at One Veteran’s Place.


Filed under All ages, Chanukah, DC, Festival, Holidays, Live Entertainment, Maryland, Outdoor, Seasonal

Watch the World Cup with the Kids

The countdown to the 2010 FIFA World Cup is on, and it’s time to start thinking about where you’ll be watching. If you want to catch the action with fellow fútbol fanatics, you’ll likely have to head out. And for many parents, the kids will be watching, too—as both fans in their own right and tag-alongs with soccer-crazed moms and dads. Luckily, some family-friendly places will be airing the matches, several of which are recommend below.

And if you’ve got World Cup fever, then you probably already know that the city is allowing bars to open at 7am to air the games being broadcast from South Africa. This may be the only time you’ll be psyched for your kids’ early wake-ups on the weekends!

Molly Malone’s
Soccer hooligans flock to this saloon on Barracks Row (8th Street SE in Capitol Hill) during the regular season, so if you want to be in the thick of World Cup mania, this is a good place to go. Several TV’s line the bar, facing out to the entire restaurant, so every seat offers a good view. They don’t offer a special kids menu, but there is plenty that will please the little ones’ palates (think burgers, chicken fingers, sandwiches). Tables are all high tops, but they’ll accommodate babies and toddlers in secure booster seats. Make a day of it on the Hill, and hit Eastern Market or one of several local parks when the final goal is scored.

Cleveland Park Bar and Grill
With 27 TV’s, you can count on Cleveland Park Bar & Grill for your sports viewing. They will be opening early on the weekends and airing all of the U.S. games. You can’t go wrong with the menu of Italian and American food, and their kids’ menu has the standard fare at good prices. Take a break from the games and head up to the roof deck. And if there’s time after, head down the street to the National Zoo for an animal tour.

The Star and the Shamrock
If, like me until recently, you thought this relatively new H Street pub was a beer-guzzling adult kind of bar, think again. The Star & the Shamrock welcomes families to enjoy the food, libations, and occasional entertainment—all with a nod to Irish and Jewish cultures. A new kids menu adheres to the theme with items like MacRoni & Cheese, Hebrew National Hotdogs, and a Kids Pizza Bagel. They have several TV’s around the bar , which will definitely be airing the World Cup.

The sports-themed restaurant is a well-known national chain, with the closest one to DC at Pentagon Row in Arlington. There are plenty of well-placed TV’s all around the space, including at least two big screens for optimal viewing. The menu contains pretty much every kind of food, including a Little Champps section (burgers, dogs, chicken nuggets, etc.) especially for kids. And when the family has had enough football, you can grab an ice cream cone at Maggie Moos and hang out by the fountain in the plaza.

Gordon Biersch
This Penn Quarter restaurant/brewery is one of our go-to places with the kids when we’re in the area. The food and beverage selections are extensive, the staff are always super nice to the kids, and they have a children’s menu that includes all of the standard kid restaurant fare. TV’s are in the bar area, so be be sure to request a booth in that section, or you could be straining your neck to see the game action.


Filed under All ages, Eats, Sports, Weekend