Librarian of Congress Carla Hayden interviewing author Jacqueline Woodson at a past National Book Festival
1. The annual Library of Congress National Book Festival is this Saturday, September 3! Book enthusiasts young and old come from all over for the day of reading-related activities. Works by more than 100 authors, poets, and illustrators will be showcased, and the creators themselves will be at the Walter E. Washington Convention Center for special appearances. It’s always a wonderful event, and I highly recommend going if you can. It’s a good idea to plan ahead if there are any authors you really want to see, so take a look at the complete list of them as well as the schedule — most presentations are first come-first served, and people do line up early to get seats. The Festival runs 9am – 8pm, and doors open at 8:30am. Admission to all of it is free, but books and more items will be for sale.
1. We recently stopped in My Cake Theory on Capitol Hill for the first time to get a taste. Why we waited so long — it opened about a year ago — I don’t know, because… YUM! They introduced the area’s first build-your-own “flavors to frills” cupcake process, that lets you select your cupcake flavor, filling, frosting, and “frillings.” They also have pre-made cupcakes loaded with “frills” and offer custom cakes and catering as well. The staff/service there are as sweet as the treats, too. (Btw, I promise this mention is not sponsored in any way.)
2. Summer break is winding down as local kids get ready to head back to school (if they haven’t already). If you want to savor the final days with some quintessential seasonal fun or a special activity, check out the KFDC Guide to Summer Around the DC Area for ideas.
1. The weather lately has been incredible, especially considering the DC area is usually at peak heat and humidity this time of year. It’s a perfect time to get out for a hike, so here’s a suggestion for one of our go-to spots: Turkey Run Park. We just went this past weekend, and had a great time. It’s never crowded, and the Potomac Heritage Trail that stretches along the river makes for a fun and scenic nature walk. It’s rooty with some rock scrambles, which adds some extra activity. For little hikers who need easier terrain, the park also has plenty of flat, wide trails and open grassy areas — just stay up high, not near the river. Read more about our very first time there and see a few pics from our most recent visit. And for more suggestions on places to hike with kids, see the round-up of Walks in the Woods.
2. Today from 2-5pm: National Landing’s summer fun series, The NaLa Beach Club, is shell-abrating the season with special activities for children and families. Enjoy crafts like seashell painting and coloring, plus mermaid photo ops. They’ll also have music, giveaways and FREE shaved ice for kids(while supplies last). This all takes places at Gateway Green (101 12th Street S Arlington, VA 22202) in the area formerly known as Crystal City, VA. Admission is free.
3. County fairs have started up around the area, and they aren’t just weekend events. Weekdays are actually a great time to go when the crowds are smaller, plus there may be special events and entertainment to enjoy. This KFDC round-up has details on all the local fair fun.
1. How about a movie in the cemetery? Tomorrow evening, August 12, catch a showing of The Hitchhiker’s Guide to the Galaxy at Congressional Cemetery as part of their summer Cinematery series. Gates open at 7pm, and the film begins at sunset. Admission is $10/adult, $5/child. See what Common Sense Media says about the film here. And PS: Congressional Cemetery is a cool place to visit anytime with gravesites of notable people, lovely peaceful paths to stroll, geocaching opportunities, and a chance to let doggies have a blast running around off leash. Read more about it here.
2. Did you know the Skating Pavilion at Anacostia Park in Southeast DC offers free skate rentals? They are available Thursday – Sunday, 10am – 5pm through Labor Day. At other times, you can BYO skates to roll around the rink. And there’s even more recreation to enjoy at the park — a biking/running/skating trail, three playgrounds, tennis and basketball courts, large fields for playing and picnicking, and all of it with scenic views of the Anacostia River. Read more about Anacostia Park in this KFDC post.
3. DC Restaurant Week, when you can get a great deal on meals at hundreds of DC area restaurants, is August 15-22. See which places are participating, get a look at the menus, and make reservations — they tend to book up fast!
4. We just returned from our trip to Greece, and I wanted to share three items that I used everyday and am so happy I had with me: A belt bag… mine is very similar to this one; a light, airy white blouse like this that can be worn as a beach cover up, open or knotted over an outfit, or just as a blouse with pants or shorts; and my new favorite sunscreen from Trader Joe’s (it’s not on the website, but still in the stores… I just stocked up in case they take it off shelves after this summer).
5. All of the Smartless episodes are awesome, but this one is a particularly fun listen, because the actor/musician truly rocks.
Sit at Toby and Kelly’s desks and play a little Dunderball at The Office!
1. Take a tour of the Scranton branch of Dunder Mifflin…a re-created version of it, anyway! The just opened The Office Experience immerses you in the world of Michael Scott, Jim & Pam, Dwight, Angela, Andy, and the rest of their colleagues and friends. You can explore re-created sets loaded with authentic details and fun surprises, recall so many funny moments from the show, play actual games from the series, put yourself into iconic scenes for both awesome photo ops and great laughs, and much, much more. The kids and I just got a preview of it, and we all thought it was a hoot and so well done (we’re all huge fans of the series). If your crew are also into The Office, they’ll definitely dig it, too. It opens today and will run through January 16, 2023. Admission starts at $39.75/adult, $30.50/child, $35.75/senior & military. See the website for hours, as they vary by day.
2. Tonight you can catch a free screening of Scooby Doo and maybe even a free scoop at The Yards’ Ice Cream Movie Series. BYO blankets and chairs and head to The Sundeck, the area next to Ice Cream Jubilee, to view the movie for free. The first 30 guests will get a free scoop and choice of viewing location. The movie will begin at dusk around 8:30pm.
3. Also tonight: Home Runs for Horton’s Kids is a fundraiser and family-friendly night of batting practice, pitching competitions, grab-and-go stadium fare snacks and drinks, and more at Nationals Park. Proceeds from the event support and celebrate the impact of Horton’s Kids’ programs in two of DC’s most under-resourced communities. The organization provides a holistic, research-based continuum of academic, youth development, and basic needs supports designed to empower children to succeed. The event is from 6-9pm, and tickets start at $150.