Enter to Win Tickets to Annie at The National Theatre!


A childhood favorite of children and many adults alike is coming to the DC stage… Annie, the Tony Award-winning production, will be at The National Theatre in March — and you have a chance to win a pair of tickets to see it!

Leapin’ Lizards! The world’s best-loved musical returns in time-honored form. Directed by original lyricist and director Martin Charnin and choreographed by Liza Gennaro, this production of ANNIE will be a brand new incarnation of the iconic original.

Featuring book and score by Tony Award®-winners Thomas Meehan, Charles Strouse and Martin Charnin, ANNIE includes such unforgettable songs as “It’s the Hard Knock Life,” “Easy Street,” “I Don’t Need Anything But You,” plus the eternal anthem of optimism, “Tomorrow.”

Annie will run at The National Theatre from March 15 to March 20 with both evening and matinee performances available. Tickets start at $48, and run time is 2 hours 15 minutes including intermission. The show is recommended for all ages.

Giveaway: For a chance to win a pair of tickets to see Annie at The National Theatre, simply leave a comment below telling me your or your child’s favorite Annie tune (because we all have one, right?). To be eligible, you must follow KidFriendly DC on Facebook and subscribe to the KFDC blog (sign up is on the left). This giveaway will run for two weeks, through Tuesday, February 23. Then, a winner will be drawn at random and notified shortly thereafter. Good luck!

Disclosure: I received complimentary tickets to Annie in exchange for this post. However, I only promote programs, products, and services that I truly believe in and/or think would appeal to KFDC readers.


Filed under All ages, DC, Giveaway, Live Entertainment, Theatre, Weekdays, Weekend, Winter

Where to Play on the Weekdays: February 8-12

Viewing a work of WONDER

Viewing a work of WONDER

Monday - Experience WONDER at the Renwick Gallery. Even if you’ve already seen it, a repeat look is just as enchanting. And if it’s your first time, well, you’re in for quite a treat. Hours are 10am- 5:30pm. Admission is free.

Tuesday – Join the Loudon Heritage Farm Museum for Toddler Tuesday. Enjoy a themed story time, songs, and crafts with your little one, all free with regular Museum admission ($5/adult, $3/ages 2-12, free for under 2). The program begins at 10am and is best for ages 18 months to 4 years old.

Wednesday - Get a nature fix at the Brookside Nature Center in Wheaton, MD. Check out the plant and wildlife exhibits, including live animals, and play in the Children’s Discovery Room. Later in the day, head to Hooray for Books and listen to local author Laura Gehl read her new picture book, Peep and Egg: I’m Not Hatching! There will be free crafts, treats, and games at 4pm followed by a special story time at 5pm.

Thursday - Visit the Children’s Science Center Lab at Fair Oaks Mall in Fairfax. I just posted about the spot where kids of all ages can explore a variety of science, technology, engineering, and mathematics (STEM) concepts through fun, engaging hands-on exhibits and activities. Hours are 10am – 6pm. Admission is $12 (under 2 are free).

Friday - Explore some of our country’s most spectacular places at a viewing of National Parks Adventure 3D at the National History Museum’s Johnson IMAX Theater. The film is full of stunning cinematography and thrilling adventure that will transport you and spark wanderlust. Tickets are $9, and there are several showtimes throughout the day. And be sure to plan for some museum time beyond the movie — hours are 10am – 5:30pm, and admission is free.

Leave a Comment

Filed under All ages, Animals, Art, DC, Educational, Exhibit, Free, Indoor Play, Maryland, Movies, Museums, Nature, Virginia, Weekdays, Winter

The Weekend Round-Up: February 5-7

Panda sightings are always a possibility at the Zoo (though better to aim the viewer ahead)

Panda sightings are always a possibility at the Zoo (though better to aim the viewer ahead)

More Styles On Sale Now at Tea Collection

Chinese New Year celebrations, Valentine’s Day prep, Black History Month activities, and live entertainment are in full swing over the new few days. These, along with DC’s everyday pursuits, will have fun covered for the whole gang. Happy Weekend!

Chinese New Year Celebration Family Day
Where: Kennedy Center
When: Friday – Monday
Admission: Free

The Kennedy Center is celebrating the Chinese New Year all weekend long with all kinds of entertainment by a variety of Chinese artists, including pop music acts, an all-girls choir, opera artists and acrobats, a full symphony orchestra, and more — many of them performances are free and open to the public! And Saturday is a special Family Day offering hands-on arts & crafts opportunities for kids of all ages from 11am – 5:30pm.

Take Heart
Where: Around the area
When: Throughout the weekend
Admission: Varies by activity

Love is in the air — and at places all around DC this weekend! Events and activities to help you prep for Valentine’s Day range from arts & crafts to a special Maker’s Market to a chocolate festival, all of them sure to be especially sweet. This post has details, plus the scoop on some sweet upcoming events.

Think Outside
Where: Around the area
When: Throughout the weekend
Admission: Varies by activity

It looks like this weekend’s weather could lend itself to some nice activity outside. And you’ve got your pick of places around the DC-Metro for outdoor adventures. Visit the Zoo (say hi to Bei Bei!), take a hike, hit a playground, explore a garden, or see what else there is to do alfresco in this post with tons of ideas recreation in the fresh air. (And if you prefer your fun under shelter, The Great Indoors list has you covered.)

Celebrate La Chandeleur!
Where: Hillwood Museum
When: Saturday, 10am – 5pm
Admission: $18/adult, $12/Hillwood and Alliance Française members, $5/child, free under 3

La Chandeleur, also known as Crêpe Day, marks the halfway point between winter and spring. In France, families celebrate by eating crêpes, which are round and golden, like the springtime sun. Hillwood and Alliance Française de Washington invite families to celebrate this holiday in festive French fashion amidst Hillwood’s spectacular gardens, magnificent mansion, and exquisite French treasures.

African American Pioneers in Aviation Family Day
Where: Udvar-Hazy Center
When: Saturday, 10am – 3pm
Admission: Free (parking is $15)

Celebrate the significant contributions African Americans have made to flight and space exploration despite the overwhelming obstacles they had to overcome. Enjoy presentations, hands-on activities, and stories along with opportunities to meet astronauts, fighter pilots, and others who will share stories of their challenges and accomplishments.

Lunar New Year Celebration
Where: Sackler Gallery
When: Saturday, 11am – 4pm
Admission: Free

Ring in the Year of the Monkey with Asian art! The Gallery’s second annual Lunar New Year celebration features free attractions for all ages, including dance performances and ribbon dancing demos, calligraphy, mask making and coloring, family-friendly tours of Monkeys Grasp for the Moon, and photo booth fun.

The Magic of Spying
Where: International Spy Museum
When: Saturday, 2-3pm
Admission: $10

In the real-life world of espionage, spies often call upon the art of magic and illusion to distract the enemy, make evidence disappear, and escape unnoticed. Join professional magician, Peter Wood, as he demonstrates the art of misdirection, sleight of hand, and other illusions used by skilled spies. This one of a kind performance, custom-designed for the Spy Museum, is guaranteed to fascinate children and adults alike. For ages 5 and up, one adult required for every 5 children. *Receive $7 off your general admission ticket purchase by showing your Magic of Spying ticket.

Black History Month Family Day
Where: American History Museum
When: Saturday,
Admission: Free

Join the museum for a variety of guided family activities and story time to help young children understand themes of the Civil Rights movement. Arts & crafts, music, and dramatic performances will be among the day’s festivities of family fun.

Show Time
Where: Local Theatres
When: Throughout the weekend
Admission: Varies by venue

* OLIVÉRio: A Brazilian Twist is a clever take on the Dickens classic at the Kennedy Center (Read a KFDC review and look for discount tickets)
* JACK and Phil, Slayers of Giants-INC is on the Imagination Stage
* And Wake Up, Brother Bear is entertaining little audiences at Imagination Stage
* See Pinocchio on strings at The Puppet Co.

Arts for Families: Chinese New Year Celebration
Where: Textile Museum
When: Saturday, 11am – 3pm
Admission: Free

This session of the Textile Museum’s Arts for Families series rings in the year of the monkey with fun for all ages. Enjoy a fashion show of traditional Chinese dress, watch a calligraphy demonstration, and create your own dragon puppet. During your visit, take the opportunity to see the exhibition China: Through the Lens of John Thomson (1868-1872) during its final week at the museum.

March Through American History
Where: Anderson House
When: Saturday, 10:30am – 4pm
Admission: Free

Kids aged 6-16 can join the Civil War Trust, an organization devoted to the preservation of America’s battlefields, at the historic Anderson House for a chance to “March Through American History.” Participants will wear historic clothing and assume the identities of officers and soldiers who fought in America’s defining conflicts: the Revolutionary War, the War of 1812, and the Civil War. Expert instruction from historians, artifact displays and a lunch of period food will fill out the day.

Mad About Magnets
Where: Annmarie Sculpture Garden
When: Sunday, 1-4pm
Admission: Free

Annmarie Sculpture Garden & Arts Center is hosting a Full STEAM Ahead programall about magnets. Pre-school age kids and their caretakers are invited to make a magnetic masterpiece, fish in the Polarity Pond, and go on an Attract/Repel scavenger hunt. While you’re there, join visiting group, Paxspace, for more magnetic experiments!

American Girl Goes Zen
Where: American Girl Store, Tysons
When: Sunday, 9:30am
Admission: Free

Join American Girl for a complimentary, girls-only yoga class on Sunday. Certified yoga instructor, Jackie Kocotas, will lead young yogis through 45-minutes of yoga to energize for what’s to come in Spring 2016. Bring sisters and besties, a mat, and water, then get ready for some empowering fun! After class gather with family and friends for a continental breakfast. All levels welcome, but suggested for girls ages 6-14. Reservations required.

Ice It
Where: Local ice skating rinks
When: Throughout the weekend
Admission: Varies by rink

It’s going to be a great weekend to get out and glide. Enjoy art as you skate at the Sculpture Garden; circle the rink at Washington Harbour; meander the paths at Canal Park; or do some holiday shopping then skate at Pentagon Row, Veteran’s Plaza, Rockville Town Square, or Reston Town Center. This post has details on alfresco (and indoor) ice skating options in the area. And note that both at Canal Park and Washington Harbor are hosting Cartoon Skate on Saturday morning!

Leave a Comment

Filed under All ages, Animals, Annual, Art, DC, Educational, Exhibit, Festival, Free, Indoor Play, Live Entertainment, Maryland, Museums, Music, Outdoor, Seasonal, Theatre, Virginia, Weekend, Winter

Ticket Giveway: James and the Giant Peach at Adventure Theatre!


Adventure Theatre is launching its 2016 year with the musical James and the Giant Peach. Based on the popular book by Roald Dahl, the production is also celebration of the author’s 100th birthday. And one lucky KFDC reader will be celebrating even more when they win a Family 4-Pack of tickets in this giveaway!

James and the Giant Peach at Adventure Theatre

When James is sent by his conniving aunts to chop down their old fruit tree, he discovers a magic potion which results in a tremendous peach – and launches a journey of enormous proportions. This wickedly fun show features a tuneful score by the TONY Award-nominated team of Pasek and Paul and a curiously quirky book by Timothy Allen McDonald.

James and the Giant Peach will run at Adventure Theatre February 14 – April 5. Recommended for all ages, tickets are $19.50 and can be purchased online or by calling 301.634.2270. Goldstar has discount tickets for select dates. You can also try to win a Family 4-Pack in the giveaway below.

Giveaway: For a chance to win a Family 4-Pack of tickets to James and the Giant Peach at Adventure Theatre, leave a comment below telling me your preferred date and time to see it (view showtimes here). To be eligible, you must also subscribe to KidFriendly DC (see sign-up to the left). The giveaway will run through Sunday, February 7, then a winner will be drawn at random and notified shortly thereafter. Good luck!

Disclosure: This post is sponsored by Adventure Theatre MTC, however, I only promote programs, products, and services that I truly believe in and/or think would appeal to KFDC readers.


Filed under All ages, Giveaway, Live Entertainment, Maryland, Sponsored Post, Theatre, Weekdays, Weekend, Winter

Valentine’s Day Activities that Kids (and You!) Will Love

Making Valentines at the Postal Museum

Making Valentines at the Postal Museum

Love is in the air — and at places all around DC over the next couple of weeks! Events and activities that celebrate Valentine’s Day range from arts & crafts to Lego fun to horse drawn carriage rides to cooking classes to dance parties to a chocolate festival, all of them sure to be especially sweet. Here are details on where you and the kids can feel the love.

Sweet Valentine: Tour and Workshop
Where: Tudor House
When: February 6, 1:30-2:30pm
Admission: $15/members, $25/non-members ($5/adult)

Celebrate sweet Valentine’s Day traditions! Children ages 6 and up will tour the historic mansion, learning about how food was made and enjoyed at Tudor Place over the last 200 years. Then, they’ll decorate two decadent chocolate Valentines to give special family members or friends. Parents/caregivers remain with children.

Valentine’s Mailbox
Where: Home Depot
When: February 6, 9am – 12pm
Admission: Free

Join this hands-on workshop and build a wooden Valentines mailbox to hold all your valentine cards from your favorite friends. After the mailbox is built, kids can personalize it with paint. Along with their craft, all partcipants receive a certificate of achievement, a workshop apron, and a commemorative pin (while supplies last). Register here.

Valentine Maker’s Market
Where: Annmarie Sculpture Garden
When: February 6, 9am – 2pm
Admission: Free

Shop a Valentine’s Maker’s Market and enjoy Annmarie’s amazing art offerings for free. This special market kicks off the season of supporting local artists and vendors — a variety of wonderful handmade, homemade, and homegrown items will be for sale, including jewelry, drawings, paintings, fiber products, and glasswork. Be sure to stroll the gorgeous grounds, stop in the artLAB to get creative, and play in the lovely Fairy Lolly, too. Read more about Annmarie here.

Library Love
Where: DC Public Libraries
When: Various dates
Admission: Free

Join story times , craft sessions, even a dance party at some of the city’s libraries. Valentine’ themed activities are taking places on several dates over the next couple of weeks. Find one that your child will love here.

Chocolate Lovers Festival
Where: City of Fairfax
When: February 6 & 7
Admission: Depends on activities

Valentine’s Day and chocolate go hand-in-hand, so certainly the timing of this sweet event is not a coincidence. The City of Fairfax presents its annual festival centered around one of the most wonderful things in the world: chocolate. There will be all kinds of activities for all ages throughout the weekend, both chocolate and non-chocolate themed — tastings, story time, puppet shows, face painting, chocolate challenges, a chocolate caper mock trial, and much more. The events list on the website has details.

Tween Valentine Card Making
Where: The Paper Source
When: February 6
Admission: $25

Kids ages 8 and up are invited to make Valentines for friends, family, and classmates at this fun workshop. Get creative with stamps, washi tape, ombré ink, glitter and more. Everyone will make 4-6 cards and get a heart maze as a favor! A 10% off coupon will be provided with the class. Buy two seats at the same time and save 10% off each seat.

Valentine Crafts
Where: Michael’s
When: February 6 & 13
Admission: Varies by session

Head to a Michael’s location for some creative Valentine’s fun. The arts & crafts supply store is hosting drop-in workshops over the next couple of weekends for children to make cards and decor — all with a love theme. Search the website to find a store near you.

Sweetheart Party
Where: Gymboree DC
When: February 12, 4-6pm
Admission: $5/non-member, FREE for members

Join Gymboree DC at their Annual Sweetheart Party, where guests will love music & dancing, sweet play activities, heartfelt arts & crafts, and sweet treats. Suitable for children up to 5 years old. SPace is limited, so register soon: wdc@gymboreeclasses.com or 202-627-2450.

Valentines in the Village
Where: Village at Leesburg
When: February 12-14 5-9pm
Admission: Free

Add something special to your Valentine’s Day weekend at Village at Leesburg, where they’ll be offering FREE evening horse drawn carriage rides down the illuminated Village Market Boulevard. Plan to go after a day out with the kids or a parents’ date night.

Valentine Lego Love
Where: Room & Board
When: February 13, 10am – 12pm
Admission: Free

Spread the love at a fun-filled morning with the kids… and Lego Man! Room & Board will be hosting a morning of modern design inspiration, featuring a life-sized creation using Legos from Brixalot. Kids of all ages can build their own designs from thousands of Legos, and create their own Valentine’s Day paper crafts. Attendees can also learn how to create an imaginative space for children using furnishings by Room & Board while spending the day with the family. RSVP here.

Valentine Build & Grow
Where: Area Lowe’s Locations
When: February 13, 10am
Admission: Free

The home improvement store hosts free bimonthly workshops for kids, and this session will bring some Valentine’s Day spirit as guests construct a Valentine’s Day Picture Frame. Bring the kids into any Lowe’s store to make the free wooden project (with parent help). Each participant also receives a free apron, goggles, a project themed patch, and a certification of merit upon completion of their project. Go here to register.

DIY Valentines
Where: National Postal Museum
When: February 13, 10am – 4pm
Admission: Free

Love is in the details at the Postal Museum’s annual Valentine’s Day Card Workshop. We’ve attended this event several times, so I can tell you firsthand it’s love-ly. They’ll have pretty papers and neat valentine-themed stamps, all you need to bring is your creativity to decorate your card. Visit the museum’s stamp store and send the cards to your loved ones with a special Postal Museum postmark. And for more about the museum, see this KFDC post.

Family Valentine’s Dance Party
Where: Port Discovery
When: February 13, 6-9pm

Don your best “play” attire and enjoy an evening of dancing, playing, exploring, and making great family memories at Port Discovery’s Valentine’s Dance Party! Along with boogeying the evening away, there will be other fun activities, including light up valentine’s, cookie decroating, open play and museum exploration, and pizza!

Love in Every Language
Where: Sackler Gallery
When: February 13 & 14
Admission: Free

All ages are welcome to enjoy a digital slideshow of images of love in Asian art. Use that as inspiration to create Valentine’s Day cards with woodblock prints that say “love” in more than a dozen Asian languages and fold heart-shaped origami.

Family Fun: Sweet Valentine Treats
Where: Sur la table locations
When: February 13 & 14
Admission: $49/person

Bring your little one and join a family afternoon filled with baking, laughter, and plenty of tasty Valentine’s Day treats. Mom, grandparent, or special adult along with their kids will have a wonderfully sweet time creating yummy cookies, whoopie pies and chocolate-dipped hearts. Plus, the instructor will walk you through the steps for making delicious cream cheese frosting and share some fun decorating tips. This year, make Valentine’s Day extra special for your little loved ones by making delicious desserts—and precious memories—together.

Pretty in Pink
Where: Select movie theaters
When: February 14
Admission: Varies by theater

See a classic you loved back in the John Hughes inspired days. Paramount Pictures and Fathom Events is bringing Pretty in Pink to select cinemas to celebrate the film’s 30th Anniversary and Valentine’s Day. Molly Ringwald is a high school girl from the wrong side of town. Andrew McCarthy is the wealthy heart-throb who asks her to the prom. As fast as their romance builds, it’s threatened by the painful reality of peer pressure. Relive the glory days when the story returns to the big screen.

Leave a Comment

Filed under All ages, Annual, Art, DC, Eats, Exhibit, Free, Holidays, Maryland, Movies, Museums, Seasonal, Tweens, Weekdays, Weekend, Winter