Spring into Summer with Family Friendly Festivals and Day Tripsby Cynda Zurfluh.
As the spring weather starts inviting us outside, there are plenty of “goings ons” to keep the family entertained out of doors. As you plan your weekends, keep these local festivals and day trips in mind – the whole family will enjoy.
1. Green Meadows Petting Farm, Jessup, MD.
April 27 – May 15 and June 18 – July 10.
Get up close and personal with over 200 animals at the Petting Farm. Everyone gets to feed the goats and sheep and even milk a cow. Enjoy farm life for an afternoon while the kids get to learn “hands on” about farm animals.
2. Glen Echo Park Family Day.
Celebrate the opening of the Park’s historic Dentzel Carousel for the 2011 season. In addition to park tours, families can enjoy artist demonstrations, magic shows, and Irish dancing.
3. Viva Vienna Memorial Day Festival.
May 28 – May 30.
Quaint downtown Vienna becomes an arts and crafts carnival over Memorial Day weekend. It’s a great way to experience “small town” fun in our bustling metro area.http://www.vivaviennava.org
4. Herndon Festival.
June 2 – 5.
A Northern Virginia attraction for over thirty years – the Festival takes place in historic downtown Herndon and includes live entertainment, carnival rides, hands on activities, and fireworks on Thursday and Saturday.http://www.herndonfestival.net/
5. The World’s Children’s Festival.
June 17 – 19.
A three day event on the Mall in DC. Since 1997, this event has been the world’s largest international celebration of children’s creativity and imagination. Take advantage this year – it happens only every four years!http://www.icaf.org/whatwedo/wcf.html
6. Smithsonian Folklife Festival.
June 30 – July 4 and July 7 – 11.
On the National Mall each year, the Folklife Festival creates a cross cultural experience where living traditions are presented to help us connect and learn from each other. Children’s programs are scheduled throughout each day.http://www.festival.si.edu/
1. Harper’s Ferry, WV.
Only about an hour from DC, Harper’s Ferry offers a range of activities for the family. It’s wonderfully scenic and has a story to tell that dates back to the 19th century. Great shopping, eating, and walking tours.http://historicharpersferry.com
2.Eastern Market, Capitol Hill, DC.
Established over 135 years ago and recently rebuilt after a fire in 2009, Eastern Market has all the hallmarks of a great day trip. Just an easy walk past the capitol, Eastern Market offers indoor and outdoor food, arts and crafts, and flea markets on Sunday mornings. Locally grown produce is available now that spring has sprung!http://www.easternmarket-dc.org
3.Great Falls Park, Great Falls, VA.
Great Falls is a fantastic park for hiking, waterfall watching, and a glimpse into the early history of this country. You can climb through the Patowmack Canal – George Washington’s vision to make the Potomac navigable for trade from the Ohio River Valley to the East Coast.http://www.nps.gov/grfa
4.Meadowlark Botanical Gardens, Vienna, VA.
A beautiful 95 acre complex of gardens, trails, and lakes. A Korean Bell Garden is taking shape with stone terracing and a Bell Pavilion – it provides a breathtaking view of the gardens.
5.Sugarloaf Mountain, Dickerson, MD.
Just a few minutes off I270, Sugarloaf Mountain provides 360 degrees of city and farmland views. Used as lookout during the Civil War and considered for the Presidential Retreat (Camp David won out), Sugarloaf is a beautiful, quiet spot with hiking and horseback riding trails. http://www.sugarloafmd.com/