It’s Memorial Day Weekend which marks the unofficial kickoff to camping and road trip season. Since we know traveling with little ones can be hard (especially in bumper to bumper traffic), we’ve put together a fantastic weekend of family fun right here in the Emerald City. On our radar: a ginormous music festival, a science-themed adventure on the waterfront, a high-flying workshop, a journey through the wetlands, a special performance for preschoolers and a scenic ride through the Upper Snoqualmie Valley. If you’re still looking for more weekend ideas, be sure to check out our Memorial Day Weekend Guide.

Folklife 2014 - Friday

photo: Christopher Nelson, courtesy of Northwest Folklife


Northwest Folklife Festival (pictured)
There’s a lil’ somethin’ somethin’ for everyone at the largest folk festival in the country. With more than 7,000 diverse performers, an awesome Discovery Zone for kids and participatory dances and workshops, we guarantee you’ll tire the little ones out without even trying. Bonus: On Monday, catch a special Kindiependent Showcase with local kindie faves including Recess Monkey, The Not-Its!, The Harmonica Pocket, Johnny Bregar and Brian Vogan and his Good Buddies. Fri.-Sun., 11 a.m.–10 p.m.; Mon., 11 a.m.-9 p.m. Seattle. Free. All Ages. Event details.

Family Science Weekend
Take the fam to the Seattle Aquarium to learn about local science projects and research being done in our area. There will be plenty of hands-on activities and special talks and demonstrations to help the whole fam discover science in a new and fun way. Fri.–Mon., 11:30 a.m.-4:30 p.m. Seattle. $14.95 to $21.95 (3 & under and members free). All ages. Event details.

Weekend Family Workshops: Rockets and Fire Arrows
Do you have a rocket obsessed kiddo? At this special weekend workshop, learn about Newton’s third law of motion—ancient rockets called fire arrows—and make one yourself. Psst! Never fear Seattle parents, this will be a fire-free program. Sat.-Sun., 11 a.m.-2 p.m. Seattle. Free with admission or membership. All ages. Event details.


Canoe Mercer Slough
Kick off Memorial Day Weekend (and canoe season) by exploring the beautiful Mercer Slough Nature Park by boat. See how this amazing ecosystem functions and with a little luck, catch a glimpse of the otters, herons, turtles and other wildlife who call the Slough home. Sat. & Sun., 8:30 a.m.-noon. (Saturdays & Sundays through Labor Day). Bellevue. $16 to $18. Reservations required. Ages 5 & older. Event details.

Youth Theatre Northwest Ice Cream Social
Join Youth Theatre Northwest for a special preschool performance of The Princess and the Frog. The hour-long show will be followed by a creative drama adventure and ice cream social—all included in the price of the show. Psst! This is the perfect opportunity to explore a preschool drama class along with your mini-me and chat with YTN educators and fellow parents. Sat., 2 p.m.-4 p.m. Mercer Island. $15 to $17. Tickets required. All ages. Event details.

Memorial Day Steam Train Rides
If you and your crew are itching to get out of the city for the day, head east to North Bend and celebrate Memorial Day Weekend with a scenic train ride. This special 75-minute steam train run is in addition to the railroad’s usual weekend train schedule and will take you through the Cascade foothills of the Upper Snoqualmie Valley, including a ride to the top of Snoqualmie Falls. Sat.-Mon., 11 a.m.–4 p.m. Snoqualmie. $10 to $18. Tickets required for ages 2 & older. All Ages. Event details.

What fun things do you have planned this Memorial Day Weekend? Tell us in the Comments below.

— Kristina Moy