Remember when kiddo got strep throat when your favorite band was in town, or the soccer tournament conflicted with the play you finally got tickets for. . .last year? If you are an arts fan, and your last dose of any form of adult entertainment was in the form of Lego Batman, it’s time to explore the all-ages performance options with the upcoming Capital Fringe (July 6-30).

Stranger things
A nearly month long celebration of the inventive and out of the ordinary, the Capital Fringe line-up of dance, music, theatre, and still more “unclassifiable” forms of live performance, is just what your family needs to break the routine. Now in its 11th year, the festival offers a range of performances accessible to families from stories, dances and songs created by teenage girls, to a comedy about aliens and roommates.

Kind of a big deal
Modeled after one that started in Edinburgh, Scotland as an alternative scene to the renowned International Festival, a now 70 year tradition taking place in that city every August, the D.C. version is one of the largest like it across the country. If your family is a fan of this fest, save the date; the next area festival (Charm City Fringe), will be held in Baltimore, November 2 -12, 2017.

Get your tickets
go to the Fringe website and click on Tickets, Passes, Buttons where you can pick up a Fringe button for $5 until July 5 ($7 beginning July 6), purchase tickets (all shows are priced at $17 per person), as well as take a look at discounted pass options. Then click on the Search function and choose Events for all-ages to pull up a menu of shows Fringe staff indicate are appropriate for the whole fam

What to See

Patrons are encouraged to expand horizons, and choose something out of your comfort zone. You or kiddo not usually a dance enthusiast? Try something in the genre of dance and physical theatre at one of the more intimate venues Fringe utilizes across the Trinidad and H Street corridorAll-ages selections include two “rock opera” style options.  See Life: A Comic Opera in Three Acts by the Del Ray Players featuring a musical score blending classical, Broadway, pop, folk, rock and doo-wop, or DC Dogs’ Release:  A Rock Opera about a chance meeting among three people.  Also, don’t miss Free Music in the Courtyard every weekend from Noon to 5 PM at the Fringe Art Space on Florida Avenue, and a kid friendly art exhibit indoors called Home.

Getting there
Festival staff recommend public transportation and describe all venues within
15 to 20 minutes walking distance of the NOMA / Gallaudet Metro station and their hub, the Logan Fringe Arts Space at 1358 Florida Avenue N.E. Gallaudet University hosts a number of all-ages selections in two theatrical spaces, while non-traditional venues like Old City Farm and Guild, and Pursuit Wine bar are backdrop to a full gamut of shows from video games brought to life with fire, to a one-woman show about poet Dorothy Parker.


Which shows do you plan on checking out with kids? Tell us in the comments below. 

—Carolyn Ross