Football might be on the brains of many, but there’s a lot of time to kill before the big game Sunday night. And you’ve got your pick of ways to do just that: Sing along to one of the best movie soundtracks in awhile (yes, I really did say that). Immerse yourself in chocolate, or chocolate themed activities, anyway. Celebrate Black History Month, the Chinese New Year, and Groundhog Day. See a show. Or enjoy a museum program. And it’s going to be warm this weekend – a whopping 50 degrees on Saturday! – so you can also break out the flip flops and find something fun to do outdoors. Happy Weekend!
Where: Local movie theaters
When: Throughout the weekend
Admission: Varies by theater
Okay, parents… you might say you are taking your kids to see and sing along to the soundtrack of the kids’ movie of the season because they love it so much. But we all know that you secretly can’t wait to belt out the tunes along with Elsa and Anna and friends. Yep, the theater audience is not just welcome, but encouraged to join in the film’s musical moments. Lyrics will be displayed on the screen, but I’m pretty sure most of us – I mean, our kids – won’t need them.
Where: Washington Convention Center
When: Saturday, & Sunday
Admission: $12/adults, $5/ages 6-12, free for 5 and under
The 2014 Washington Auto Show is in its second and final weekend. If there’s any “grown-up” event that is equally fun for all ages, this is it. More than 700 cars and trucks are on display for guests to check out. And especially for kids will be appearances by some of their favorite characters along with the auto-fun. See this post from a couple of years ago for more about the event.
Black History Month Family Day
Where: National Museum of American History
When: Saturday, 11:30am – 5pm
Admission: Free, but tickets are required
Bring the whole family to the Smithsonian’s kickoff celebration of Black History Month! Inspired by the exhibition Changing America: The Emancipation Proclamation,1863, and the March on Washington, 1963, there will be dramatic performances, hands-on activities, gallery tours, and a preview screening discussion of a new documentary by Stanley Nelson, Freedom Summer. Get your free tickets here.
Where: Local Rinks and St. Elizabeths East
When: Throughout the weekend
Admission: Varies (Free at the slide!)
It’s perfect weather for winter recreation outdoors! The ice slide at St. Elizabeths East is only around a few more weekends, so get your inner tube rides in while you can. And you can skate under the sky without risk of frostbite – this post has details on local ice rinks, so you and the kids can get gliding.
Where: Local Theatres
When: Throughout the weekend
Admission: Varies by venue
* Bright Star Theatre is putting on a performance about George Washington Carver at this week’s free Saturday Morning at the National show.
* Peter and the Starcatcher is on stage at the Kennedy Center.
* Enjoy theatre on strings at The Puppet Co., where Tales of Beatrix Potter is on the main stage and Baby Bear’s Birthday and Dragon Tales are the featured Tiny Tots show.
* Next door at Adventure Theater, catch Miss Nelson is Missing.
* Really little ones will enjoy Aquarium at the Atlas Performing Arts Center.
* Groovy Nate will entertain the crowd at Jammin’ Java on Saturday morning.
More details about all of these shows, or links to them, can be found in this post about live entertainment around the DC area this winter.
The Land of Chocolate
Where: City of Fairfax
When: Saturday & Sunday
Admission:Depends on activities
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 website has details.
Celebrate La Chandeleur
Where: Hillwood Estate & Gardens
When: Saturday, 10am – 5pm
Admission: $18/adult, $5/ages 2-18
In France La Chandeleur, also known as “Crêpe Day,” is celebrated with food and games. Alliance Française de Washington and Hillwood invite families to celebrate this holiday in festive French fashion by eating crepes, enjoying traditional Breton music performed by Moch Pryderi, listening to classic tales told in French and English, and experiencing the exciting culture of Brittany, where crepes originated. Embark on a quest to discover French treasures in Hillwood’s mansion and create your own French hats to wear and to take home. Tickets include 2 crepes per adult and 1 crepe per child.
Say Hola & Hello
When: Saturday, 6pm
Admission: $7/child, $10/parties of 2 or more
Head to Columbia Heights on Saturday evening for some bilingual entertainment. Performer Mariana Iranzi is coming on from NYC to present her new Album “Hola Hello” and put on a fun show for the whole family. Bloombars is located at 3222 11th Street NW.
Where: Rockville Town Square Ice Rink
When: Saturday, 6-10pm
Admission: $8/ages 13 and up, $7/12 and under, $3/rentals
Parents may get a little more excited about this one than kids: It’s an 80’s themed ice skating party at Rockville Town Square Ice Rink on Saturday evening. Guests are encouraged to dress in their most awesome 80’s gear and, like, totally rock out to Madonna, Def Leppard, Bon Jovi, Michael Jackson, and other faves from the decade. At 7,200 square feet, it’s the largest outdoor ice skating rink between Baltimore and Washington, DC, so there will be plenty of space to recreate the Flashdance routine on ice.
In Every Language Love
Where: Freer & Sackler Gallery
When: Saturday & Sunday, 12-4pm
Drop in to the museum showcasing Asian Art for In Every Language Love, an open house for all ages. After a slideshow of images representing love in Asian art, guests can use printing blocks inscribed with the word “love” in more than a dozen Asian languages to make valentines.
Where: Dupont Circle fountain
When: Sunday, 7:30am
If you’ve got an early rising family, go see Potomac Phil, the National Groundhog, make an appearance and offer weather and (because it’s DC) political predictions. Phil will let us know whether to expect six more weeks of winter or an early spring (and maybe who will the mayoral race?). Live accordion music, polka dancers, a puppet show, local VIP’s and more will be part of the festivities. It all begins promptly at 7:30am, and Potomac Phil will emerge at 8am. The event is part of the Dupont Festival, which organizes and implements a wide range of outdoor and indoor activities in the greater Dupont Circle area throughout the year.
Chinese New Year Parade
When: Sunday, 2pm
Usher in the Year of the Horse, lunar year 4712, on Sunday at the Chinese New Year Parade. Festivities kick off at 6th & I Streets NW at 2pm and will wind through the streets of Chinatown celebrating Chinese culture in a brilliant procession that includes traditional dance, music, and, of course, the iconic dragons. The parade is expected to last about two and a half hours, and spectating is free. Get there a little early to stake out your curbside spot.