If you’re feeling weighed down from all of the candy canes and holiday hot cocoa you consumed, this is the weekend for you. Get moving (and burning off some of those sweets) as a family at an interactive play for babies and toddlers, make a splash at an indoor pool party, or take a naturalist-led hike through a bird sanctuary. Keep reading for more ways to experience non-stop family fun this weekend.



Free Play Plus Performance Art Fun
Live performance teams with free play in this stage production of Inside Out, the story of two kids whose imaginations run wild. The plot: It’s bedtime, but instead of hitting the sack a duo of children use their imaginations to turn their bedroom into a magical wonderland—a glove becomes a dancing fish, a shirt transforms into a fantastical creature, and a sock becomes a dancing maniac. Stick around to the end of this 45 minute show, as it includes a fun free play session. Fri.-Sun. Bethesda.$12; $5/ lap seat for kids under 12 months. Ages 1-5. Event Details.


Meet Spinosaurus
The Spinosaurus was over 50 feet long, 20 feet high, and it weighed over 6 tons, making it the largest predatory animal to ever roam the world (yep, even bigger than T-Rex). Kids will get a kick out of seeing the full-sized skelatal model of the Spinosaurus, plus real dino fossils. Fri.-Sun. Downtown. $11/adults; $7/kids 12 and under. All ages. Event Details.

Takoma Park

Splash and Play at an Indoor Pool Party
Takoma Plays is an annual event that encourages families to start the new year off doing something that’s good for the mind, body, and spirit—play! This year kids and their parents are invited to splish and splash around in an indoor pool party. There will also be mini-lessons and water aerobics on hand. Sat., 2 pm-4 pm. Takoma Park. Free. All ages. Event Details.

Lamont Park

A Theater-Style Three Kings Celebration
Santa may be chilling back at the North Pole, but for many the gift-giving continues through El Dia de los Reyes Celebration (aka Three Kings Celebration). Don’t miss GALA Hispanic Theater’s traditional Three Kings festival, featuring the Magi, live animals, local performers, a walk through the neighborhood, and gifts for every kid. Sun., 2:30 pm. Lamont Park. Free. All ages. Event Details.


Start (or Perfect) a Rock Collection
If kiddo’s rock collection is growing out of control, stop by the Meadowside Nature Center to see one of the most colorful rock collections ever. They’ll also get to try their hand at a rock scratch test to compare the hardness of different rocks. Sat., 12:30 pm-1:30 pm. Rockville. Free. 4 and up. Event Details.

Chevy Chase

A Guided Stroll Through the Woods
Meet your hike leader at the amphitheater by the main house. This is where your family-friendly excursion through the Woodend Sanctuary starts. The hike comes with a cool natural history theme and is great for older kids who love to explore. Don’t forget your sneakers and water bottles! Sat., 9 am-10 am. Chevy Chase. Free. Al ages. Event Details.

What are you most looking forward to doing with your family in the new year? Tell us in the Comments section below.  

—Ayren Jackson-Cannady

Photo: Imagination Stage via Facebook