Tag Archives: DC Kids Activities

Where to Play on the Weekdays: July 24-28

Plenty of blackberries for the picking at Homestead Farms




Monday – Stay cool and have fun at a pool, sprayground, or water park. The Summer in DC guide has links to the many places around the DC-Metro area where it’s all about getting wet — and you can consider this for any day of the week! But if staying cool means avoiding the outdoors altogether, check out The Great Indoors list of more than 90 ideas for adventures inside. Hours and admission varies by locale.

Tuesday – Go over the rainbow and beyond at Watkins Regional Park. The adorable Wizard of Oz themed playground will have little ones frolicking for hours. Be sure to stop by Old Maryland Farm to visit the animals and spend time at Watkins Nature Center to view even more cool creatures and birds, then hike the nearby trails. Go for a spin on the carousel, take a ride on the miniature train that winds through woods, and play mini golf. Park hours are dawn to dusk, 9am – 4pm at the Farm, and 10am – 5:30pm at the Nature Center. Admission is free, but rides and mini golf are a small fee.

Wednesday – See the sea of sunflowers at McKee-Beshers Wildlife Management Area in Poolesville, MD. The sight of thirty acres of bright yellow blooms stretching gloriously through the fields will make your day! Plus, admission is free. Plan to pair the outing with some blackberry picking at Homestead Farms, located just a few minutes away. Bring along some lunch to eat in the covered pavilion, and make time to visit the farm animals there, too. Hours are 9am – 5pm. Admission to the PYO fields is $3/person, but it’s deducted from the cost of the berries you pick to bring home.

Thursday – Go bowling! Take advantage of Kids Club Bowling at Pinstripes in Georgetown. From 10am – 12pm Monday – Thursday, kids can bowl for $3/hour ($3/shoe rental) and parents are free (limit 4 kids per adult). Eat while you bowl or stay after for lunch — they have a good kids menu and a pretty extensive main menu, too. Afterwards, head down Wisconsin Avenue to Georgetown Waterfront Park to play in the spray fountain and enjoy some outdoor time along the Potomac.

Friday –Make it a mission to visit the International Spy Museum, where you and the kids can go undercover to explore the intriguing world of espionage. Hours are 9am – 7pm. Regular admission is $21.95/adult, $14.95/ages 7-11, free for 6 and under, but you can find a discount on adult tickets here.

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Filed under 2017, All ages, Animals, Eats, Educational, Exhibit, Farm, Free, Indoor Play, Maryland, Museums, Nature, Outdoor, Park, Seasonal, Summer, Virginia, Weekdays

Where to Play on the Weekdays: July 17-21

The Library of Congress, one of DC’s most iconic attractions



Monday – Have a wild time at the National Zoo! Check the Daily Programs schedule before you go to help plan your outing — you can see an elephant training demo, meet a farm animal, watch feedings, and more — or pick your animal visits as you go. This time of year, grounds are open 8am – 7pm, exhibit building hours are 9am – 6pm, and the Visitor Center runs 9am – 6pm. Admission is free, though parking in the Zoo lot for non-members is $22 (free for members). You can also try parking on Connecticut Avenue or a side street, or take Metro to Woodley Park or Cleveland Park stations then walk a few blocks.

Tuesday – Visit the largest library in the world, the Library of Congress, to explore children’s books, see interesting exhibits, and marvel at one of DC’s most beautiful buildings. The Young Readers Center is open 9am – 4pm and welcomes visitors to read books, do a Garden Maker activity, and hang out in the cozy space. And be sure to spend time checking out the rest of the LOC, too — it’s truly magnificent! Hours are 9am – 4:30pm. Admission is free.

Wednesday – Experience Summer Magic with Dave Thomen. Performances that amuse and astound take place Tuesday – Friday this week at Discovery Theater in the Smithsonian Ripley Center. Recommended for ages 5-12, showtimes are 10:30am and 12pm, plus 2pm on July 20. Admission is $8/adult, $6/child, $3/under 2. For a live show with littler ones, catch Art on the Horizon’s By the Seashore at The Lab at Convergence in Alexandria. Showtime is 10:30am, and tickets are $6.

Thursday – Spend the hot day in the cool underground world of Luray Caverns. Take a day trip to behold the amazing stalagmites, stalactites, and other amazing limestone formations in the massive cave system. There’s even more to explore there above ground: Check out vintage rides in the Carriage and Caravan Museum, stop in the Luray Valley Museum, and make your way through the Garden Maze. Hours are 9am – 7pm. Admission for the caverns is $27/adults, $14/ages 6-12, free for ages 5 and under. Some of the other attractions cost extra.

Friday – Join author, performing artist, and educator MiMi Zannino for Books Alive!, a new program for preschoolers in Gaithersburg, MD, featuring theater, storytelling, music, and crafts that celebrate literacy. Explore Constitution Gardens Park with a treasure hunt and storytelling, then make a butterfly craft, sing and dance to ukulele music, and end the adventure with an interactive nature walk through the Garden.


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Filed under 2017, All ages, DC, Educational, Exhibit, Free, Library of Congress, Live Entertainment, Outdoor, Park, Story Time, Summer, Theatre, Virginia, Weekdays

Where to Play on the Weekdays: July 10-14

Taking in the spectacular bloom at Kenilworth Aquatic Gardens





Monday – Visit Kenilworth Aquatic Gardens, where the lotus flowers and water lilies in bloom are a stunning sight! The wonderful, annual festival to celebrate it is this coming weekend, but it’s also nice to take in the beauty of it all without the crowds. Meander through the park to see ponds full of giant lily pads and dazzling flora, walk out on the boardwalk to take in views of the acres of marshland, and look out for turtles, great blue herons, frogs, and other wildlife. And did I mention this gorgeous oasis is all right in Northeast DC? Hours are 9am – 5pm. Admission is free.

Tuesday – Take the money tour at the Bureau of Engraving and Printing. It’s a great outing with kids while they’re on summer break from school, since tours are only offered on weekdays. Tours run every 15 minutes 9am – 6pm. Admission is free, but tickets are required, and you can pick them up at the booth on Raoul Wallenburg Place starting at 8am. Read more about the experience in this KFDC post about one of our outings there.

Wednesday – See art come to life at the National Portrait Gallery through Portraits Alive!, a theatrical tour of the museum’s collections performed by teens from DC’s Summer Youth Employment Program. The journey takes visitors to a variety of portraits as the students perform biographical portrayals of the people represented in the photographs, paintings, drawings, sculptures, and prints. Tours are at 12-1pm and 1:30-2:30pm, and they’re being offered Tuesday – Friday this week. Admission is free. And if you’re with really little ones who might get antsy on the tour, take them to the museum’s Explore! with the Portrait Gallery activity space especially for young visitors.

Thursday – Watch The Amazing Max perform his extraordinary magic show at Strathmore’s Backyard Theatre for Children. The annual summer entertainment series for kids takes place on Thursdays in July. Performances are at 9:30am and 11:30am. Tickets are $8.

Friday – Join Bonjour Mama to celebrate Bastille Day, Le 14 Juillet, with French stories and songs led by Madame Jackie from the popular French storytime at the Cleveland Park library. The session takes place from 10:30-11:15am at the Bon Jour Mama French Bookstore in Kensington, MD. Admission is free.

For an activity with older kids, go to Great Falls. Whether you opt for the Maryland or Virginia side, you really can’t go wrong. Enjoy scenic views of the falls and rapids from several overlooks, hike easy trails along the river or through the woods, and stop in the Visitor Center — there’s one on each side — to learn more about the area’s history and wildlife. Read a bit more about Great Falls Park in this post on the area’s best outdoor spots to spend a beautiful day with the kids.


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Filed under 2017, All ages, Annual, Art, DC, Educational, Exhibit, Free, Indoor Play, Live Entertainment, Maryland, Museums, Nature, Outdoor, Park, Seasonal, Story Time, Summer, Theatre, Virginia, Weekdays