Another weekend, another fantastic selection of things to do in DC! You can rock out at a mineral, gem, and fossil show, see a classic fairytale performed as opera, get into the holiday spirit, experience cool museum exhibits, and more. With warmer temps in the forecast, the post about the best places to hang outdoors with the kids will come in handy, and the indoor list is always a good one, too. Whatever you do, Happy Weekend!
A Gem of an Event
Where: George Mason University
When: Saturday & Sunday
Admission: $5/adult, $3/ages 13-17, free for 12 and under
Kids (and adults) who like fossils, rocks, and or gems are in for a treat. Northern Virginia’s 23rd Annual Mineral, Gem, & Fossil show will have all that and then some. More than 20 dealers will be selling collectibles, plus there will be demonstrations, exhibits, door prizes & kids activities, including mini-mines and a fossil dig.
Hansel & Gretel as Opera
Where: Atlas Performing Arts Center
When: Saturday & Sunday
Admission: $25/adults, free for ages 16 and under
A children’s classic comes to life in the theatre, and in a unique way. The Capital City Symphony presents a semi-staged concert opera performance of Humperdinck’s Hansel and Gretel. The Saturday performance is at 7:30pm and will be the full opera, for adults and older kids; Sunday’s show is at 4pm and will be a one-hour version for younger audiences, with special audience interaction.
Where: Throughout the area
When: All weekend long
Admission: Varies by locale
If you think it’s too early to start celebrating the holidays, think again! Shows and events that embrace — and emit — the holiday spirit are beginning around the area. This weekend, catch Tiny Tim’s Christmas Carol at Adventure Theatre (find discount tickets) or the Ford’s Theater version, enjoy the holidays on ICE! at National Harbor, get family holiday photos at Santa HQ in Tysons, and let holiday lights displays dazzle you. The 2014 KFDC Guide to the Best Holiday Events in DC has ALL you need to help make the season bright.
Go Nat Geo
Where: National Geographic Museum
When: 10am – 6pm
Admission: $11/adult, $7/ages 5-12, free for 4 and under
Experience two interactive exhibits recommended for all ages. “Spinosaurus” and “Food: Our Global Kitchen” are currently at the National Geograhic Museum, and right now adults can get a discount on admission to visit them.
Pike & Rose Tree Lighting
Where: Pike & Rose
When: Friday, 6:30-8:30pm
Pike & Rose, the first major project to break ground in the designated White Flint District, invites the community to celebrate the grand opening of the development with its first-ever holiday tree lighting festival. The evening’s festivities will be emceed by beloved DC radio personality, Tommy McFly of The Tommy Show. Additionally, this free to attend event will include a kids crafting station, stilt walkers and live “reindeer” ponies available for photo ops. Live entertainment will be provided by acapella groups. Pike & Rose is located at 11580 Old Georgetown Road in North Bethesda.
Family Turkey Hunt
Where: Green Spring Gardens
When: Saturday, 1pm
Admission: $6/county residents, $8/non-residents
Learn the history of the wild turkey, its amazing adaptations, and importance to early Americans. Track this wily bird through the gardens and natural spaces of Green Spring then create a turkey-inspired decoration for your Thanksgiving table. Pre-registration is required. Read more about Green Spring Gardens in this KFDC post.
Rhode Island Row Tree Lighting
Where: Rhode Island Row
When: Saturday, 6:30-9pm
Join the Rhode Island Row community at its inaugural Neighborhood Tree Lighting and Open House holiday event, hosted by WPGC’s DJ Flexx. Enjoy live performances, photos with Santa, festive entertainment, and more. Rhode Island Row is also the new flagship location for the WPGC Coat Drive 95, in partnership with Salvation Army, a DC tradition more than 20 years in the making. WPGC will broadcast live from Rhode Island Row, collecting coats and winter accessories donations for the Salvation Army. When guests donate a coat or winter accessory they will receive one free ticket for photos with Santa to be redeemed during the holiday open house. Rhode Island Row is located at 2300 Washington Place NE.
Where: Local Theatres
When: Throughout the weekend
Admission: Varies by venue
* 101 Dalmations just started its run at Imagination Stage
* Watch the Mythbusters test popular theories and urban legends live at the Warner Theatre (look for a deal on tickets)
* And little ones will enjoy interactive theatre with Wake Up, Brother Bear at the Bethesda theatre
* Mary Ann Jung: Feasting with the Queen is this week’s free Saturday Morning at the National performance
* Alistair Moock is playing the Saturday morning show at Jammin’ Java
* The Kennedy Center presents The Gift of Nothing starting this weekend through December 28
* It’s the opening weekend of A Christmas Carol at Ford’s Theatre
* Fiddler on the Roof is on the Arena Stage (and it’s fantastic!)
* Creative Cauldron presents Arabian Nights this month
* Date night? I highly recommend the Shakespeare Theatre Company’s latest production of As You Like It (also good for older children who’d enjoy Shakespeare)
Where: Washington Waldorf School
When: Saturday, 10am – 2pm
The Washington Waldorf School is holding its 45th annual Fall Bazaar, featuring family activities, artisanal goods, delectable food, and stunning seasonal décor evoking the spirit of the school. The Bazaar will include activities and crafts for kids of all ages, a puppet show, more than 30 artisan vendors from DC and beyond, live music and entertainment, hand-crated gifts, books, and toys, and the Bazaar Bistro, with delicious lunch, desserts, and specialty drinks. The work of Waldorf students will also be on display.
The Enchanted Forest Holiday Extravaganza
Where: Westin Tysons Corner
When: Saturday, 10am – 5pm & Sunday, 10am – 1pm
The Junior League of Northern Virginia invites you to stroll through the whimsical forest of theme-decorated holiday trees, have Cocoa and Sprinkles Cupcakes with the Ice Princesses or Breakfast and Brunch with Santa. The weekend-long festivities, presented by the Junior League of Northern Virginia and featuring Kids in the Holiday Kitchen, include live entertainment from Mr. Knick-Knack, the Great Zucchini and more, model train display by the National Capital Trackers, science experiments by the Children’s Science Center, themed crafts for children, gifts and holiday decorations for purchase, a live and silent auction, and more.
Play Virtual Ball with Stephen Strasburg
Where: Westfield Mall
Lucky Nats fans have a chance to meet and play Xbox One with baseball star, Stephen Strasburg as part of the grand opening of Microsoft at Westfield Montgomery Mall in Bethesda! The first 200 customers in line for the grand opening at 11am will receive a ticket, however the meet and greet with Strasburg will take place in the afternoon.
Where: Local ice skating rinks
When: Throughout the weekend
Admission: Varies by rink
With warmer temps on the way, it’ll be a great time to get gliding at local rinks. Skate amid art at the Sculpture Garden; join Washington Harbour’s Cartoon Skate on Saturday morning; meander the icy paths at Canal Park; or shop then skate at Pentagon Row, Veteran’s Plaza, or Reston Town Center. This post has details on both alfresco and indoor ice skating options in the area.
Portrait Story Days
Where: National Portrait Gallery
When: Saturday, 1-4pm
Drop in to listen to a story about a person who has influenced American history and culture and to create a special piece of art. This weekend, learn about Nez Perce leader Chief Joseph. Read more about the program in this post about one of our experiences there.
Big Hero 6
Where: Local movie theaters
When: Throughout the weekend
Admission: Varies by theater
The new much-talked-about kids movie lives up to the hype! With great animation, exciting action, innovative ideas, an interesting plot, and of course, a good message, parents will enjoy it, too. (I did!)