Tag Archives: Thanksgiving 2021

Where to Play on Thanksgiving Day (2021)

Work up an appetite for the big feast with some ice skating


How about a side of recreation to go with your Thanksgiving meal? If you’re going to be in town for the holiday and are looking for pre- or post-feast activities, here are some ways to complement the main event of the day. Happy Thanksgiving!


1) Get gliding and enjoy some active fun. You can ice skate under the sky at one of several outdoor rinks in the area that are open on the holiday. Our faves are all DC rinks — National Gallery of Art Sculpture Garden, Washington Harbour, and The Wharf  — because you just can’t beat the city locations on the National Mall, next to the Potomac, and right over the river. Find info on those and more here.  And be sure to check ice rink websites for Thanksgiving Day hours!


2) Visit a Smithsonian museum or the National Zoo. They are all open on Thanksgiving from 10am – 5:30pm, except for the American Art Museum and National Portrait Gallery which are open 11:30am – 7pm and the National Zoo 8am – 4pm. The National Gallery of Art (which is not part of the Smithsonian, just a neighbor on the Mall) is open, too, from 10am – 5pm.


3) See the Outdoor Holiday Display at the U.S. Botanic Garden. Get a glimpse here of the always delightful model train exhibit, all constructed from plant materials. It’s back this year, but outside in the National Garden.  Open 10am – 5pm. Admission is free.


4) Enjoy a holiday hike.  It looks like it should be a pleasant Turkey Day this year.  In honor of the day, I suggest going to Turkey Run. 🦃😉 But Rock Creek, Great Falls, Roosevelt Island, Huntley Meadows, and Riverbend are all great parks for family tramping. This post has details on all of them along with even more recs for local walks in the woods.


5) Hang out at a playground.  BeauvoirHains PointClemyjontri, Cabin John Regional ParkWheaton Regional Park, plus loads of DC Parks and Rec locations, and many more in the DC Metro are good places to take littles to play while you’re waiting for the feast.


6) Get into the holiday spirit at National Harbor.  There is a nightly tree lighting and light show in the Waterfront District that runs every half hour from sunset until 9pm.


7) Take an evening drive or stroll through a holiday light display— several around the area have started dazzling visitors with twinkling wonderlands.


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Filed under 2021, DC, Holidays

Five Things for Today: November 23, 2021

Inside the new FUTURES exhibit


1.  Smithsonian museums and the National Zoo will all be open on Thanksgiving Day — good to keep in mind if you’re looking for things to do while the turkey is cooking and/or have out-of-town guests to entertain. Hours are 10am – 5:30pm at all of them, except for the American Art Museum and National Portrait Gallery which are open 11:30am – 7pm, and the Zoo from 8am – 4pm (be sure to reserve passes).  The National Gallery of Art (which is not part of the Smithsonian, just a neighbor on the Mall) is open, too, from 10am – 5pm.  [KFDC Tip:  The new FUTURES exhibit at the just reopened Arts & Indutries Building (mentioned last week) is a great one to check out with the fam!]


2. Tell your friend Veronica… it’s (almost) time to celebrate Hanukkah!  We start lighting the menorah on Sunday night — giant ones, at some places! If you’re looking for ways to celebrate the holiday around the area, there are a bunch of events happening that are open to all — menorah lightings, theatre performances, ice skating parties, even a Chanukah firetruck parade. Some of them require advance registration and/or offer discounts for early sign-up (though most are free), so check out the KFDC Guide to the Holiday Season, where there’s a Chanukah section with info on where and when to celebrate the eight craaaazy nights!


3. The Downtown Holiday Market opened this past weekend, and it always makes for a fun and festive outing during the season, plus you can pair it with a visit to the National Portrait Gallery/American Art Museum (open Weds-Sun) that are right next to the market.  Located at 8th & F Streets NW in Penn Quarter, hours are 12-8pm daily through December 23, with the exception of Thanksgiving Day and December 6. Admission is free.


4.  Lots of tasty sounding recipes from an always trusted source — for Thursday or anytime.


5.  Weird Al narrates Thanksgiving. (Totally going to be singing ‘You’ve got the right stuff..ING!’)


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Filed under 2021, DC, Fall, Five Things for Today