We’re down to the final countdown: just a few weeks left to enjoy the sunniest school-free months of the year! Spend a summer evening at a local carnival or cuddle up with the kids by a campfire roasting marshmallows. Daytime fun includes getting up close and personal with the Red Cross’s emergency vehicles or sailing the high seas on a land-locked boat in Baltimore. Read on for more weekend inspiration.

photo: Scott Webb via Unsplash

The Federal Triangle

Kick Up Your Feet with a Mardi Gras Beat
Stomp your feet and come dance in the street with alley jazz band Bumper Jacksons.  This lively lunchtime performances will get your toes tapping. There is plenty of outdoor seating on Wilson Plaza, so take the Metro, grab lunch and spend the afternoon grooving. Fri. Event details. 


Swap Your Way to a Back-to-School Wardrobe
Enjoy live music and food truck at this summer swap event. Trade your old clothes, shoes and accessories for new sizes and styles (take that, growth spurt!). All items are worth one ticket; bring what the kids have outgrown and take home what you need. This dog and kid-friendly event is free and held rain or shine. Fri. Event details. 


Carnival Nights in Loudoun
Summer nights were made for amusement park rides and carnival fare. Spin, twirl and twist on an assortment of rides or try your hand at a carnival game to win an oversized stuffed animal! Fri.-Sun. Event details. 


Celtic Weekend Festival
Celebrate Celtic heritage all weekend at this living history town and garden sanctuary on the South River. Weekend events at colonial London Town include hearth cooking and woodworking demonstrations, a display of tartans, an introduction to Gaelic and Irish whiskey tastings. Fri.-Sun. Event details. 

Foggy Bottom

Take a Magic Carpet Ride with Disney’s Aladdin 
Discover a whole new world at Disney’s Aladdin, the hit Broadway musical! From the producer of The Lion King comes the timeless story of Aladdin, a thrilling new production filled with unforgettable beauty, magic, comedy, and breathtaking spectacle. It’s an extraordinary theatrical event where one lamp and three wishes make the possibilities infinite. Fri.-Sun. Event details. 

Woodley Park

Watch a Roar-some Live Show at the National Zoo
Erth’s Dinosaur Zoo Live guides families on a breathtaking tour that begins in pre-historic Australia, where they can observe, meet and interact with an eye-popping collection of lifelike dinosaurs and other creatures. This 30-minute theatrical performance will thrill and entertain kids while stimulating their imaginations in ways that will forever connect them to their world. Brought to life by a team of skilled performers and puppeteers, and designed with the help of professional paleontologists, Erth’s Dinosaur Zoo Live’s puppets are so extraordinarily realistic The Chicago Tribune said it had “visual oomph to rival ‘The Lion King.'” Fri.-Sat. Event details.

Tysons Corner

Watch Extreme Sports Under the Big Tent
Energetic, urban and contemporary, Cirque Du Soleil’s Volta is a captivating voyage of discovery that showcases never-before-seen under the Big Top acrobatics in a visually striking world. Driven by a stirring melodic score and inspired in part by the adventurous spirit that fuels the culture of street sports, Volta is about finding yourself and unveiling your personal powers. Fri.-Sat. Event Details. 

Silver Spring

Get Gooey at a National S’mores Day Celebration
Grab your bugspray and head to Maydale Conservation Park’s annual campfire in honor of National S’mores Day. Venture past the traditional combo and make your own melty goodness with ingredients supplied at the s’mores bar. Bring a blanket and chair and enjoy some old fashioned campfire stories. Preregistration is required. This event is suggested for children 5 & up. Sat. Event details. 

National Mall

Moo-ve to the Beat at this Barnyard Dance
The Smithsonian’s Infant Investigator program provides hands-on, playful activities to support young children’s development. This week read and dance to Sandra Boyton’s Barnyard Dance  and then go on to explore farm animals. We will connect our classroom exploration with Alexander Calder’s sculpture animals.Class meets at the National Gallery of Art. Sat. Event details. 

Get Theatrical at the National Museum of American History
Head to the National Museum of American History for an afternoon of fun and creativity. Families are welcome to drop by the museum’s art studio and  choose from any of our four maker stations. Each station presents a challenge or question based on the afternoon’s theme. This Sunday’s theme is theater. Sun. Event details. 


Touch-a-Truck: Get Up Close with the Red Cross Emergency Vehicles
Bring the family out and see all of the Red Cross emergency vehicles, fire engines, police vehicles, construction and transportation vehicles, and much more! Enjoy games, including a bounce house, food and fun for the entire family. Entry is free. Sat. Event details. 


Kids Night at the Museum
Drop the kids off for at Loudoun Heritage Farm Museum for a  night of pizza, crafts, and educational play time in the interactive museum gallery. Children 3 to 10 can keep shop in the museum’s hands-on general store, pretend-cook cornmeal in the old fashioned kitchen, or tend to the life-size animals in the barn area. Preregistration and prepayment are required. Sat. Event details. 

Penn Quarter

Yoga on The National Building Museum’s Indoor Lawn
Enjoy an all-level vinyasa flow yoga class on The National Building Museum’s Lawn, a sloping green space built on a scaffolding superstructure. The Lawn is an immersive installation taking up the entirety of the Museum’s Great Hall. Tickets are $25 ticket includes both the yoga class and entrance to the museum (regularly $16). Sun. Event details. 


O Captain: Go on a High Seas Adventure
Become the captain of an imaginative adventure on a life-sized cargo ship in The Port! Sail, navigate and be a ship engineer as you explore the seas and discover how products make their way around the world. Work together to move, stack and explore what’s inside of shipping containers. Try your hand at operating a gantry crane, explore an engine room and try your hand at navigating a ship, plus learn about the Port of Baltimore – and the many jobs and products that make up one of the world’s most active ports! Sun. Event details.