The Weekend Round-Up: August 29 – September 1

Make Revel Grove your happy place

Make Revel Grove your happy place



If the start of school didn’t mark the unofficial end of summer, then Labor Day weekend will take the cake. Many of the season’s quintessential activities come to a close after this, but that doesn’t mean the fun ends, too. As you savor the last of summer joys, start welcoming some of the delights of fall…and find plenty DC mainstays to enjoy in between. Happy Long Weekend!

National Book Festival
Where: Washington Convention Center
When: Saturday, 10am – 10pm
Admission: Free

One of DC’s biggest annual events is happening this weekend — a few weeks earlier than usual and a change of location, but it’s going to be just as good. The 2014 Library of Congress National Book Festival will feature more than 100 authors, poets, and illustrators from every literary genre. There will be book readings, Q&A’s, fun for kids, book signings, and more reading-related activities for all. For a glimpse of what to expect, see this post about our experience there a couple of years ago.

Season Finales
Where: Various locales
When: Through Monday
Admission: Varies by activity

This weekend is the last for many pursuits that we’ve been enjoying all summer long, outdoor swimming, concerts and movies under the stars, The Big Maze among them. If you’re hoping to get in one final jazz show in the Sculpture Garden, a romp through the Building Museum’s labyrinth, or a day at an outdoor public pool, then check out the Summer 2014 guide, which has details on all of those diversions and many more.

Hear the Blues
Where: Carter Barron Amphitheater
When: Saturday, 12-7:30pm
Admission: $10/member, $15/non-members

Head to the outdoor stage in Rock Creek Park for the 26th Annual DC Blues Festival. Along with the line-up of performers, there will be musical workshops throughout the day, where both children and adults can learn about Blues music. Kids will especially enjoy instrument and vocal workshops, including an instrument petting zoo. View the schedule of both musical acts and extra fun here.

Ren Fest!
Where: Revel Grove, Crownsville, Md.
When: Saturday, Sunday, & Monday
Admission: $17/adults, $10/ages 7-18

The merriment continues at Revel Grove in Crownesville, MD. On weekends through October 19, you can time trip at the charming medieval village that hosts the annual Maryland Renaissance Festival. For more details on what you will find there, check out this post about the event.

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

* A super waaaay, to spend some time together: The Fresh Beat Band concert at Wolf Trap on Saturday (look for discount tickets)
* Children’s fave Rocknoceros is playing a special Labor Day show at Jammin’ Java
* The Puppet Co. presents Little Red Riding Hood & the 3 Little Pigs on the Main Stage for its final weekend
* Animal Crackers and Old MacDonald’s Farm are the featured Tiny Tots shows at the Glen Echo puppet theatre
* Be wowed by Cirque de Soleil’s Amaluna at National Harbor
* The hit stage version of Dirty Dancing is at the National Theatre (look for discount tickets)
* Catch a colorful show as Pinkalicious is performed at Adventure Theatre before it closes after this weekend.

How ‘Bout Them Apples?
Where: Area farms
When: Throughout the weekend
Admission: Varies by locale

The apple picking season has begun! Several farms in the area have opened their orchards for guests to start gathering. This list of area farms and orchards offering pick-your-own opportunities was posted awhile back, but all of the locales are still recommended, and links and festival dates have been updated as the apples are ready for harvest once again. I always recommend calling ahead to be sure the pickings are good the day you plan to go.

Page-to-Stage Festival
Where: Kennedy Center
When: Saturday, Sunday, & Monday
Admission: Free

More than 40 theater companies will present readings and rehearsals of plays and musicals during the Kennedy Center’s 13th annual Page-to-Stage Festival. And they are all free and open to the public. Performances will take place at several venues around DC, and there are a few that are family-friendly, including Adventure Theatre’s Garfield, the Musical with Cattitude, The Millennium Stage performance In His Own Words: A Concert in Tribute to Walter Dean Myers, and My Creative Spirit’s Kidz at Play. See the schedule for details and the full list of shows.

Virginia Scottish Games
Where: The Plains, Virginia
When: Saturday & Sunday, 9am – 9pm
Admission: $20adults, $5/ages 5-12, free for under 5

Celebrate Scottish heritage at this annual fair featuring everything from music and dance to sports and game to food and cars, even Scottish dogs. Much of it will be showcased through competition, but there is plenty that all visitors can partake in, too. Two-day adult passes are available for $30. Festival gates will close at 6pm both days, but concerts will continue until 9pm.

Labor Day Concert at the Capitol
Where: West Lawn of the U.S. Capitol Building
When: Sunday, 8pm
Admission: Free

The National Symphony Orchestra continues its annual Labor Day Weekend tradition with a free concert on the West Lawn of the U.S. Capitol. Led by Principal Pops Conductor Steven Reineke, this year’s program explores American music from TV, movies, and beloved Broadway musicals, and features Emmy Award–winning actress and singer Nicole Parker and Broadway and opera sensation Christopher Johnstone. Gates open to the public at 3pm, and if the 8pm show is too late, you can catch the open dress rehearsal at 3:30pm. In the case of inclement weather, the concert will be moved to the Kennedy Center Concert Hall. You can call the NSO Summer Concert Hotline at 202.416.8114 after 2:30pm for updates.

The Big Dig
Where: Great Country Farms
When: Saturday & Sunday, 9am – 6pm
Admission: $12/adult, $10/child

Great Country Farm’s annual Potato Harvest takes place this Saturday and Sunday. Take the scenic drive out to the foothills of the Blue Ridge Mountains early for all-you-can-eat pancakes topped with homemade fruit syrups, then hop on a hayride that will take you out to u-pick fields where you can dig for gold — Yukon gold potatoes, that is. Breakfast is served from 9am – 12pm, and the hayrides run all day, but the fun doesn’t have to stop there. Along with breakfast and the Dig, admission includes access to the rest of the farm’s attractions, including a cow train, mazes, barnyard petting area, pick your own fields, and more. Visit the website for more information and directions.

Where the Buffalo Roam
Where: National Zoo
When: Starting Saturday
Admission: Free

In celebration of the National Zoo’s 125th Anniversary, the National Zoo is bringing back the animal that inspired its founding and helped spark the conservation movement, the American bison. The Zoo started in 1887 as an exhibit on the National Mall behind the Castle featuring American bison and a handful of species native to North America. To mark this anniversary, two bison will be taking up residence at the National Zoo — they will be located adjacent to the Zoo in Your Backyard Exhibit and the lower entrance to Asia Trail. Welcome them with a visit!

Ice Cream at George’s Place
Where: Mount Vernon Estate
When: Saturday, 10:30am – 12:30pm
Admission: $17/adults, $8/ages 6-11, free for 5 and under

Get a glimpse of culinary life in the 18th century through ice cream making demos at Mount Vernon. The special program takes place every Saturday in August, so this is your last chance to check it out. Visitors can watch as costumed staff make one of George Washington’s favorite desserts using reproduction period equipment to emulate ice cream-making process of the olden times.

The Ins & Outs
Where: Around the area
When: Throughout the weekend
Admission: Varies by activity

If you’re just looking for things to do outdoors or inside, depending on the weather or simply your preference, these posts are chock full of evergreen pursuits:
The Best Places in the DC Area to Enjoy a Beautiful Day Outdoors with the Kids
The Great Indoors

DC United vs. New York Red Bulls
Where: RFK Stadium
When: Sunday, 2:30pm
Admission: Tickets start at $25

It’s Kids Day at the DC United game! Along with an exciting match at RFK, there will be lots of extras for young fans — activities and a play area located behind Section 222. Start enjoying them at 1:30pm when stadium gates open, but get to the parking lot even earlier for tailgating and Food Trucks.


8 Comments

Filed under All ages, Animals, Annual, DC, Educational, Exhibit, Farm, Festival, Free, Live Entertainment, Maryland, Music, Nature, Outdoor, Seasonal, Summer, Theatre, Virginia, Weekend

8 Responses to The Weekend Round-Up: August 29 – September 1

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