Enjoy nice trails, history, and some of the best natural scenery in the area at Great Falls Park
Summer break just got more official. Not only are all of the kids in the area finally finishing up the school year, it’s also the first weekend of the season calendar-wise. And on a personal note, it’s really kicking in as I get ready to drop off my (not so) baby boy for his first sleep away camp adventure, a milestone that’s both exciting and emotional. But while my face might be buried in tissues as I say goodbye for a few weeks, all of you here have will have loads to smile about — events and activities galore, great weather
, and that “official” summer feeling. Happy Weekend!
Summer in the City
Where: Throughout the area
When: All weekend long
Admission: Varies by activity
Free concerts, outdoor swimming, special exhibits, movies under the stars, sprayground fun… Activities exclusive to the season can be enjoyed all around the area throughout the weekend. Get the full scoop on all of these joys of summer in the 2016 Summer Guide.
Where: National Museum of the American Indian
When: Friday & Saturday, 10am – 5pm
The Choctaw Nation of Oklahoma celebrates its tribal history and heritage with two days of food, workshops and performances. Activities and demos include Native dancers, singers, storytellers, and booths showcasing beadwork, pottery, flutes, the Choctaw language and tribal cooking. Hands-on activities for kids and families along with meet & greets with Choctaw Nation princesses of all ages allow visitors to learn more about Choctaw culture.
Where: Wakefield Park in Annandale, VA
When: Friday & Saturday
Admission: Free for spectators
See amazing skating tricks and skills or show off some of your (or your kids’) own! SkateFest is a rad event full of skateboarding, free gear, and tons of prizes. The weekend celebrates Go Skateboarding Day with family friendly activities for all ages: music, games, food, giveaways, skateboard vendor tents, and Sk8 For A Cause, a Skate Competition all to benefit Children’s National Medical Center. Friday is a registration/prelim day with some extra activities, and the main festival takes place on Saturday. See the online schedule for specifics.
Where: Pennsylvania Avenue NW
When: Saturday 11am – 9pm & Sunday, 11am – 7:30pm
Admission: $15/adults, free for ages 12 and under
Join one of the biggest summer barbeques around as the Giant National Capital Barbeque Battle returns to pit some of the nation’s best barbequers against each other to compete for big prizes. The reward for attendees: Samples from all the entrants (plus, more food), live music, cooking demos, kids’ fun, and more. It all takes place along Pennsylvania Avenue NW, from 9th to 14th Streets.
Where: Various locales in Montgomery County
When: Saturday & Sunday, 12-4pm
Celebrate the history, culture, and natural beauty of Montgomery County, MD, as more than 30 historic sites welcome visitors for guided tours, re-creations of historic events, children’s activities, and more — all free of charge. Learn about the history of dairy farming, railroads, and trolleys; African American communities, astronomy, local arts & culture, and outdoor recreation. Check the online brochure for participating locations and activities.
SpongeBob SquarePants Family Day
Where: National Postal Museum
When: Saturday, 10am – 5pm
Visit a pineapple under the sea?! On Saturday, the Postal Museum will be decked out like Bikini Bottom—SpongeBob’s underwater home—and filled with fun activities for the whole family. Drop in for a chance to meet SpongeBob SquarePants, play nautical-themed games, build a sand castle with kinetic sand, and more! Visitors can document their experience by sending a limited-edition SpongeBob postcard or posing for pics in a Bikini Bottom photo booth as well as enjoy performances by comic bubble artist Casey Carle, the renowned. Be there or be square!
Capital Fringe Music Festival
Where: Baldacchino Tent at Old City Farm & Guild
When: Saturday & Sunday, 12-9pm
The Capital Fringe Festival is returning this summer, filling the city with non-stop theater, dance, music, visual art, and everything in-between. Preview the festival this weekend before it officially kicks off on July 7, and join Capital Fringe at its first-ever two-day outdoor music festival that will feature bands on one stage under the Baldacchino Tent.
Plan Ahead for Adventure!
Where: Solomons, MD
When: Future Weekends
Admission: Prices vary by package
Some outings take advanced planning, especially ones that are particularly cool. Ruddy Duck Adventures offers all-inclusive day trips around the Solomons, MD, area. They devise itineraries that include fun activities and great dining, plus all the instruction and gear needed; all guests have to do is drive. Opt for a fossil and shark teeth hunt, a paddling excursion, or wine and art adventure — and you can make it a family outing or a day date sans kids. Bonus:
Use the code KFDC
at check out to get a 10% discount! And for some inside scoop, read about our experience
on the fossil hunt.
Precious Cargo Bike Ride
Where: Capitol Hill
When: Saturday, 9am & 4pm
Join Recess Outings, a new bicycle outing business on Capitol Hill, for a ride designed to help parents become more comfortable biking with toddlers. The group will talk about safety and preparing for an outing, then go for a guided ride with a stop at a neighborhood play space. Whether you want to begin including your little one in your daily commute, use your bike more for everyday transportation, or simply share your love of biking with your toddler and spend more time together outdoors, this is the perfect way to get started! All bikes, child seats, helmets, and snacks are provided. Rides begin and end near Eastern Market. Sign up in advance here!
Chinatown Community Picnic
Where: Chinatown Park at 6th and I Street NW
When: Saturday, 11am – 2pm
As part of the 2nd annual “Chinatown Park Start Fresh!,” summer series, the Mayor’s Office on Asian and Pacific Islander Affairs is hosting a community picnic, and the public is welcome to join. Family-friendly activities will include outdoor games, balloon twists, face painting, arts & crafts, cultural performances, cultural exhibitions, free fitness classes, free bike repair, and more! Light refreshments will also be provided. RSVP here.
Fun at Fairfax Parks
Where: Several Fairfax parks
When: Throughout the weekend
Admission: Varies by activity
The Fairfax County Park Authority hosts all kinds of events on weekends for guests of all ages. Enjoy an evening adventure at Frying Pan Farm Park, take a wagon ride at Riverbend, look for critters in the waters of Lake Fairfax, explore history at llanor C. Lawrence Park, and more! Go here to see all of your options, this weekend and beyond, and register for activities.
Where: Local theatres
When: Throughout the weekend
Admission: Varies by venue
* See Children’s Theatre-in-the-Woods at Wolf Trap where Josh & the Jamtones are playing a concert al fresco
* Enjoy a picnic and a play as Chesapeake Shakespeare presents The Three Musketeers at PFI Park in Ellicott City, MD (bonus: kids are FREE)
* Join the excitement of Jumanji at Adventure Theatre! (look for discount tickets)
* The Little Mermaid is a collaboration between Imagination Stage and The Washington Ballet
* Catch a performance of Little Red Riding Hood and the 3 Little Pigs at The Puppet Co.
* And Baby Bear’s Birthday is their featured Tiny Tots show
* Hear the Gravedigger’s Tale, a free one-man show at the Folger Theatre
* Let the international Irish dance phenomenon Riverdance wow your crew at Wolf Trap (look for discount tickets)
* The Kennedy Center presents American Acoustic: Family Show with Chris Thile, a matinee show geared toward young people
* Robert Post Comedy Theatre for Kids will entertain at the Kennedy Center in the afternoon
National Day of Play
Where: Gymboree Play & Music DC
When: Saturday, 11:45am – 3pm
Celebrate 40 years of playing & learning with Gymboree! Bring your family & friends for a day of fun activities for all to enjoy. Facepainting, play time, art, music, refreshments, and Gymbo Live! will be part of the festivities. Suitable for newborns to age 5. Space is limited, so register in advance!
Vine on the Waterfront
Where: Oronoco Bay Park
When: Saturday, 12-6pm
This food and wine festival in Alexandria may sound like a grown-up event — and the main festivity is, for the most part — but there will be activities for little ones, too! The festival will showcase some of the best of Alexandria’s restaurants and Virginia wineries. And to complement it all will be live entertainment, a children’s corner (moon bounce, arts & crafts, and more), and cooking demos. While admission is free, you will need to purchase tickets to sample food and wine – $20 for 8 tickets, $20 for the wine sampling. Rain or shine.
Open Studio: Welcome to Murad Khani
Where: Sackler Gallery
When: Saturday & Sundays, 12–4pm
Witness how artists from Afghanistan are transforming their lives and their country during an afternoon of free family-friendly activities. Take a tour (12:30pm and 2:30pm) of the special exhibition Turquoise Mountain, then head to the ImaginAsia classroom to get creative with family and friends. All ages are welcome with adult companions.
Where: MLK Jr. Memorial Library
When: Saturday, 2pm
Kids ages 8-12 can participate in Papitám, a learning-through-play experience that educates kids with culturally appropriate Native American explorations such as pottery creation, jewelry-making, and wildlife games. Algonquin for “Let’s Play,” Papitám is designed and presented by Maryland’s only state recognized native nation, The Piscataway. Join them for a morning of creativity and fun!
DC United vs. New England Revolution
Where: RFK Stadium
When: Saturday, 7pm
Admission: Tickets prices vary
Kick it at a soccer match where Messi won’t dominate our team. The DC United are hosting the New England Revolution on Saturday evening. Be sure to stop by the Fan Zone in section 222 for a variety of kids activities.
Babe Ruth Baseball Family Day
Where: National Portrait Gallery
When: Sunday, 11:30am – 3pm
Celebrate America’s pastime and one of its greatest heroes. View the new exhibition One Life: Babe Ruth and enjoy games, crafts, and music in the lovely Kogod Courtyard.
Walks in the Woods
Where: Around the area
When: Throughout the weekend
Admission: Varies by locale
Hit the trail with the fam to enjoy the sunshine and some quality time. See flowers in bloom, tramp in places with scenic views, hike and explore history at interesting locales, and enjoy a day of active fun. This post, started in the early KFDC days and updated several times since, has a a bunch of recommendations for good walks in the woods with the kids.
Get the Blues
Where: Homestead Farm
When: Throughout the weekend
A recent update from Homestead said their blueberry patch is loaded with the blue fruits and the picking’s easy. While admission to the farm is free, it’s $3 to access the blueberry fields. BYO container or purchase one there. Be sure to visit the goats and pigs while you’re at the farm. And for more places to PYO produce, see this post.
Where: Rhode Island Avenue between 5th-24th Streets NE
When: Sunday, 12-6pm
This choose-your-own-art adventure weaves its way through Rhode Island Avenue businesses, open areas, and vacant properties, exploring the theme of creative collaborations — innovative and artistic ways to solve complex problems. The day will include performing and visual arts elements, hands-on activities, local food, drink, and retail vendors, as well as a chance to hang out with Rhode Island Avenue small business owners and employees.