Tag Archives: Washington DC Weekend April 16-17

Celebrate this Weekend

There is a lot of celebrating happening this weekend.  Many area farms and organizations are kicking off Easter festivities with egg hunts and more spring fun.  An Emancipation Day commemoration is taking place with a big event downtown.  National Parks are kicking off a special week.  William Shakespeare is turning 395 years old.  The earth will also be an honoree.  Even coral reefs have a family festival dedicated to them.

And you’re invited to be part of it all.  Here are details on all of the above-mentioned, plus a few more recommendations for family fun.  Happy Weekend!

Its a scramble for Easter eggs at a local Eggstravaganza last year

Thank You Easter Bunny – Local festivals celebrating the spring holiday have begun, and several will be on this weekend.  Already underway through April 24 is Ticonderoga Farms’ annual festival. Saturday marks the start of Bunnyland at Butler’s Orchard, and the National Community Church is launching their seasonal Eggstravanganzas on Saturday  at Top Golf in Alexandria from 10:30am -1pm and Grace Church in Georgetown (1041 Wisconsin Avenue NW) from 9:30-11am.  See the website for more details.  For something with a little extra sparkle, the annual Adeler Jewelers Children’s Spring Festival and Egg Hunt is on Sunday in Great Falls.  For more area Easter celebrations, Go Out & Play has a lengthy list of local egg hunts.

Park ItNational Park Week begins on Saturday and runs through April 24.  To celebrate, entrance to over 100 parks that usually charge admission will be free.  Log some time on the trails at a local park or even one a bit further away. For suggestions on good hikes with kids, see this post about hiking with little ones.

Get OutFor more outdoor pursuits, see my new list of the area’s best places to spend a beautiful day outdoors.  As this weekend round-up goes up, the weather forecast for the weekend isn’t looking fabulous, but there’s always a chance that will change.  Fingers crossed.

DC I AM: An Emanicpation Day CelebrationCommemorate the signing of the DC Compensated Emancipation Act 149 years ago with National Geographic.  The museum is hosting a special event on Saturday from 10am – 4pm that will include readings, performances, art and writing activities, family workshops, opportunities to tour the American I Am exhibit, and more.  Admission to the event is free.

Explore the Universe On Saturday, the National Air & Space Museum invites guests of all ages to a special Family Day that explores the skies and beyond.  Observe the sky through a telescope, experience how different cultures see the sky, hear stories about astronomy, and participate in hands-on astro-activities.  The free event runs from 10am – 3pm.

Coral Reef Family FestivalCelebrate the National Museum of Natural History’s exhibition of the Hyperbolic Crochet Coral Reef on Saturday from 11am – 3pm.  There will be Discover Stations in the Sant Ocean Hall, a chance to learn about different corals with scientist Stephen Cairns, and other special activities throughout the day.

Nature’s Best PhotographyTake the kids to see some amazing moments in nature captured in pictures.  A new exhibit is opening at the National Museum of Natural History on Saturday that features the winning photos from the Nature’s Best Photography Windland Smith Rice International Awards. The images of wildlife, the plant world, sea creatures, and more will be fascinating and fun for the whole family.  Admission to both the exhibit and museum are free.

On the Really Big Screen – If you’re planning on a visit to the museums (or even if not), how about catching an IMAX as well?  Most are less than an hour long and can easily be combined with a trip to see the exhibits or one of the special festivals happening at the Natural History and Air & Space Museums, which just happened to be where both Smithsonian IMAX theaters are located.  Read reviews of a few films currently playing:  Born to Be Wild 3D, Arabia 3D, and Grand Canyon Adventure 3D.  All tickets are $9.

Happy Birthday to the BardCelebrate William Shakespeare’s birthday at the Folger Shakespeare Library on Sunday from 12 – 4pm. Enjoy jugglers and jesters, music, song and dance, stage combat workshops, and more. It’s the one day of the year when the Folger reading rooms are open to all.  Plus, there will be birthday cake for everyone!  Admission is free, but there will be a charge for some food and drink.

Jammin’ Musical ExperiencesTwo kids’ music performers will be at Jammin’ Java this weekend entertaining with their unique shows and super fun sounds.  The Diggity Dudes will take the stage in Vienna on Saturday at 10:30am, and Gustafer Yellowgold will take the audience on a musical journey on Sunday at 2pm.  Tickets for both shows are $10 and available for purchase online.

Celebrate the EarthJoin Brookside Gardens on Sunday for a daylong Earth Day celebration. Festivities will kick off at 9am with an Earth Day Garden Project – volunteers are welcome to help Brookside get ready for the gardening season. Enjoy nature, wildlife, and plant walks starting at 10am. Participate in interactive family-friendly activities throughout the afternoon and visit the “green” vendor and craft fair.

Show TimeSeveral productions are happening in local theatres this weekend.  Find out what you can see where in this post about spring shows.

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Filed under All ages, Animals, Annual, DC, Educational, Farm, Festival, Free, Holidays, Live Entertainment, Museums, Music, Outdoor, Park, Seasonal, Spring, Theatre, Virginia, Weekend

Nature’s Best Photography at the Natural History Museum

You would never guess by the images that appear on this blog that I have a bit of background in photography.  Before leaving the full-time professional world to stay at home with my kids, many years of my work were in the editorial and publishing arenas as a photo editor for a travel website and for the Discovery Channel.

There was a time when I carried an SLR with me everywhere and kept my eye out for the shot.  These days, I snap most of my pics with my iPhone and reserve my focus for children who might wander.

Anyway, during my time at the travel website, one of the projects I worked on was a partnership with Nature’s Best Photography Magazine.  The title couldn’t be more apropos — they publish some of the most stunning  wildlife and nature photography I have ever seen. And it’s all about the photography; the images aren’t used to illustrate articles — there is often just background information about the shot and photographer — but they tell fascinating stories on their own.

Every year the magazine holds a competition to recognize the passion and dedication of nature photographers: The Nature’s Best Photography Windland Smith Rice International Awards.  The winning photos are always phenomenal, capturing moments in nature that are spellbinding, inspiring, heart warming, insightful, and just beautiful to look at.  Lucky for us, we’ll get to do that — up close.

Starting this Saturday, April 16, the winning photographs from the 2010 competition will be on display at the National Museum of Natural History.  The Nature’s Best Photography Awards 2010 exhibit will run through September 25.  You can get a preview of the images online, but what better place to view them than at the museum, where all things nature are celebrated.  Go on Saturday and make it a day at the museum — check out the photos then stay for the Coral Reef Family Festival.

Admission to the  museum, exhibit, and festival are free.


Filed under All ages, Animals, Annual, DC, Educational, Free, Museums, Weekend

$1 Kids Days at Nationals Park

Take the kids out to the ballgame this weekend for a buck!  This Saturday’s game against the Brewers is the first of several $1 Kids Days that Nationals Park will host this season.

With the purchase of one full-priced adult ticket, you can get up to four tickets for kids ages 3-12 for just $1 each.  This offer is for select seating areas and subject to availability.  Tickets can be purchased in advance online or at the Box Office the day of the game.

Four $1 Kids Days will take place this season:

April 16 vs. Brewers
June 23 vs. Mariners
September 8 vs. Dodgers
September 11 vs. Astros

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Filed under DC, Deal, Gradeschoolers, Live Entertainment, Outdoor, Preschoolers, Preteens, Sports, Weekend