Looking for things to do on Veterans Day? Whether you want to pay tribute to those who have served or are looking for ways to keep the kids entertained on the day off from school, these suggestions should have you covered.
Tour the Memorials
Where: National Mall
When: Throughout the day
Observe the holiday by visiting the sites that honor our nation’s veterans. Make the rounds on the Mall at your leisure or attend special ceremonies — they will take place at the World War II Memorial at 9am and at the Vietnam Veterans Memorial at 1pm, and the Korean War Memorial is a short walk from both.
National Veterans Day Ceremony
Where: Arlington Cemetery
The National Veterans Day Ceremony begins at 11am with a wreath laying at the Tomb of the Unknowns and continues inside the Memorial Amphitheater with a parade of colors by veterans’ organizations and remarks from dignitaries. Free and open to the public, attendees are encouraged to get there by 10:30am. Read more about Arlington Cemetery in this post about a KFDC experience there.
Mount Vernon Salutes Veterans
Where: Mount Vernon
When: 9am – 4pm
Admission: Free for military; $17/adult, $9/child, free for under 5
Special activities at George Washington’s former estate include a wreath laying ceremony, a patriotic community concert by the barbershop chorus The Harmony Heritage Singers, and a performance by the United States Air Force String Orchestra. Mount Vernon honors all active duty, former, or retired military personnel with free admission, plus a concert by the all-veteran barbershop chorus, The Harmony Heritage Singers.
Where: U.S. Navy Museum
When: 10am – 5pm
There may not be a special event happening, but it’s an apropos day to visit the museum dedicated to the history of the Navy. The fascinating displays range from replicas to the real thing — model ships, genuine periscopes, images from major exhibitions, and much more. Be sure to read this post about our experience there for more insight and an inside look.
Where: National Parks
When: All day
It’s the last fee free day of the year for national parks, which means there’s no entrance fee where they usually charge to get in. Take advantage of complimentary admission and the day off from school; hit the trail at Shenandoah or Great Falls, take a ride on Skyline Drive to see the mountains covered in autumn colors, or visit Harpers Ferry.
Where: National Theatre
Admission: Tickets are $14-38
Veteran’s Day is the last chance to see The BFG at National Theatre. Based on the beloved Roald Dahl book, the production integrates magnificent puppetry, rich visuals, and imaginative storytelling as it presents the tale of the world’s only friendly giant who brings good dreams to humans.
Where: Charm City attractions
When: Throughout the weekend
Admission: Varies by locale
Zip up I-95 for some fun in our sister city, where there are several great places to spend a day off. Play the day away at Port Discovery. Explore the exhibits and loads of hands-on activities at the Maryland Science Center. See some of the quirkiest, coolest art ever at the American Visionary Art Museum. Get an eyeful of the underwater world at the National Aquarium. Or learn about Baltimore’s early business days at the Museum of Industry.
When: 10am – 8pm
Admission: $12/ages 2-5, $25/ages 6 and up
Kids and adults will have a blast scaling the many colorful, whimsically-themed walls at this indoor climbing center in Laural, MD. Ascend Mt. Rushmore, reach the Jolly Roger on a pirate ship, conquer a game of Tetris, shimmy up a giant guitar, and experience peak fun in even more ways!
Archaeological Adventures & Animal Portraits
Where: National Geographic Museum
When: 10am – 6pm
Admission: $15/adult, $10/ages 5-12, free for 4 and under
Interesting and entertaining, Indiana Jones & the Adventure of Archaeology exhibit at Nat Geo is great exhibit for kids ages 8 and up. The exhibit showcases props, video, and fun facts from Indy’s cinematic adventures along with fascinating artifacts and details about real-life archaeological studies and discoveries. All ages can enjoy Photo Ark, a stunning collection of portraits of the world’s species. before they disappear and to inspire people to care. Captured by photographer Joe Satore, each image is a visual connection between the animals and people who can help protect them.
Out & About
Where: Around the area
When: All day
Admission: Varies by activity
It’s forecast to be a gorgeous day on Wednesday, so browse The Best Places in the DC Area to Spend a Beautiful Day Outdoors with the Kids for all kinds of ways to take advantage of the weather and the day off.