February has been one busy month (Valentine’s Day, Presidents Day, Black History Month, Ground Hog Day, the Winter Olympics, and Plum Pudding Day…really!). Keep up with the month’s go-go-go trend by filling your weekend with one of these hands-on, interactive events. Make your own comet at the Air and Space Museum’s Black History Month Family Day, wiggle, jump and dance around at Bobby McKey’s Piano Bar kids day, or check out the cool arena wall at Great Play (one of the DMV’s newest mini gyms with a technological spin). Now, that is going out with a bang!


Northern Virginia

Ready for Take Off: African American Pioneers in Aviation Family Day
This is a must-do for plane and space shuttle-obsessed tykes! Fly by this all day event to celebrate the contributions of African Americans in flight and space exploration. Kids will enjoy presentations (from real astronauts!), hands-on activities (make your own comet!), and puppet shows (about the amazing Tuskegee Airmen). Sat., 10 am-3 pm. Chantilly. Free. All. Event details.

Run, Jump, Throw at Great Play Kids Gym
Great Play, a new local kids gym, is opening to save the day (when you feel like you could pull your hair out if Junior jumps off the sofa one more time). What sets it apart from other kiddie gyms around town is their integration of technology and an interactive arena wall. Little ones will have so much fun they won’t even know that they are learning coordination and confidence. Fri.-Sat. Fairfax. Free. 1-12. Event details.


Build Bridges (and Get Slimed) at Engineering Family Day
Every February, the National Building Museum and the National Engineers Week Foundation invite kids and grown-ups to debunk the myths of engineering (that it’s all nerdy and stuff) and discover how professional engineers turn an idea into reality. Your future engineer will play rocket scientist, build a model suspension bridge, and make their own slime stash. Don’t leave without asking a tour guide what the moon really looks like up close. Sat., 10 am-4:30 pm. Penn Quarter. Free. 4-12. Event details.

Walk with Bill “Bojangles Robinson” at the National Portrait Gallery
Drop in to listen to stories about Bill “Bojangles” Robinson, an African American tap dancer and actor who started dancing in 1883 when he was just five years old. Kids will also get a chance to create a piece of art inspired by the quick-footed Bojangles. Sun., 12 pm-5 pm. Free. 5 and upEvent details.


Keys to Fun: Kids Day at Bobby McKey’s Dueling Piano Bar
Bobby McKey’s, a grown-up piano bar at the National Harbor, gets the kid-friendly treatment today when performers pound out tunes that the tot-set can recognize. Expect lots of wiggling, jumping, and dancing around (which is fully encouraged). Junior will walk away with a newfound appreciation for live music, and he may even want to start tickling the ivories for himself. Ticket includes buffet meal. Sat., 1 pm-3:30 pm. National Harbor. $18/adults; $15/kids 2-11; free/kids under 2. AllEvent details.

Tea Time With American Girl Addy
Let your little doll collector pack up their American Girls and meet up with new friends at this tea party with a historical spin. As they enjoy hot chocolate and cookies, visitors will learn about American Girl Addy Walker, who, in 1864, escaped the south with her mother and ran away to Philadelphia for a better life. Stick around for a craft workshop inspired by the courageous adventures of Addy. Sat., 2 pm-4 pm. Halethrop. $10. AllEvent details.

How do you plan on spending the last weekend in February? Tell us in the comments section below. 

—Ayren Jackson-Cannady

Photo courtesy of Air and Space Museum Udvar-Hazy Center