Sunday, April 16, 2017

Spring Break 2017!


Spring Break's here! If you're staying in town as we are (all the cool kids are... 👊 :), then check out this guide for a bunch of local and low-cost/free ways to have fun and explore Prince George's County this week!  (Events and activities for variety of school-aged children.)  Still need to make Summer Camp plans?  We've got a Summer Camps Guide here, too!  See you around!

**Remember, both the Greenbelt and College Park Metro Stations will be closed this week.  More information here.

MONDAY

Nature Tots: Delightful Ducks
Introduce your preschooler to the wet and wnderful world of ducks through games, stories, and crafts in this fun, interactive program. Ages 3-4.  Registration required.  Even if your child is older, this is still a great place to check out and explore for a couple of hours.  Check out my review of the Patuxent Research Refuge and its programs here!
When: 10:30-11:30am
Where: National Wildlife Visitor Center, 10901 Scarlet Tanager Loop, Laurel
Cost: Free, donations welcome!

Discovery Cart Days - Headwinds & Tailwinds
Discover why airplanes have windsocks and what do they do. Learn about the history of windsocks while decorating your very own to take home. A Museum educator will engage you with hands-on materials from the education collection that will help explore these themes through interactive questions, experiments, and activities!
When: 11am-2pm
Where: College Park Aviation Museum, 1985 Corporal Frank Scott Drive, College Park 
Cost: $5/adults; $2/children

Eggstravaganza Egg Hunt 
Enjoy your day with an egg hunt, face painting, egg decorating, a picture with the Easter Bunny and entertainment!  Don't forget your basket! **If you have not yet been to the fabulous Wizard of Oz-themed playground at Watkins yet, consider this opp to do so!  So much fun!
When: 11am-2pm
Where: Watkins Regional Park, 301 Watkins Park Drive, Upper Marlboro
Cost: Resident: $5; NR: $7

Trolls!
It’s Spring Break, so the Old Greenbelt Theatre is showing a FREE family-friendly movie.  After the Bergens invade Troll Village, Poppy, the happiest Troll ever born, and the curmudgeonly Branch set off on a journey to rescue her friends.
When: 1pm 
Where: Old Greenbelt Theatre, 
Cost: Free!

6th Annual Hippy Hop Egg Hunt 
Join us as we celebrate spring with our 6th Annual Hippity Hop Egg Hunt at Cosca Regional Park. Enjoy arts and crafts, live entertainment, prizes and amusements.
When: 1-4pm
Where: Southern/Technical Regional Center, 7007 Bock Road, Fort Washington
Cost: Resident: $5; NR: $7

CityScape Sketching
Spend some time with a professional artist learning about beginning drawing and sketching skills. The workshop will focus on drawing perspectives inspired by buildings and cityscapes. Ages 5-18.
When: 3-4pm
Where: Bladensburg Library, 4820 Annapolis Rd, Bladensburg
Cost: Free!

TUESDAY

Nature Tots: Delightful Ducks
Introduce your preschooler to the wet and wnderful world of ducks through games, stories, and crafts in this fun, interactive program. Ages 3-4.  Registration required.  Check out my review of the Patuxent Research Refuge and its programs here!
When: 10:30-11:30am
Where: National Wildlife Visitor Center, 10901 Scarlet Tanager Loop, Laurel
Cost: Free, donations welcome!

Discovery Cart Days - What's the Point?
Learn about compasses and navigation while making your own compass. A Museum educator will engage you with hands-on materials from the education collection that will help explore these themes through interactive questions, experiments, and activities!
When: 11am-2pm
Where: College Park Aviation Museum, 1985 Corporal Frank Scott Drive, College Park 
Cost: $5/adults; $2/children

If you haven't checked this place out yet with your energetic 1-12 year old(s), then let this be the day!  This place is really great.  HUGE.  Two climbing walls.  Two foam pits.  Tons of equipment for curious ones to explore and blow off some steam.  Very clean.  Spaces are available on a first-come, first-serve basis. Parents are required to be on the floor with the children (Maximum 3 child: 1 adult). 
When: 11:30am-12:30pm
Where: 8001 Sheriff Road, Landover
Cost: $7 per child. 

Meet and learn about the center's live reptiles.  Pack a lunch & enjoy a picnic at Watkins, playing at its awesome Wizard of Oz playground and then heading to the Nature Center for this reptile show. Afternoon done!  
When: 2-3pm 
Where: Watkins Nature Center, 301 Watkins Park Drive, Upper Marlboro
Cost: Resident: $3; NR: $4

Tail Waggin' Tutors
The Beltsville Branch's own canine bibliophile welcomes children ages 6-12 to read to him.
When: 3:30-4:30pm
Where: Beltsville Library, 4319 Sellman Rd, Beltsville
Cost: Free! 

WEDNESDAY 


Discovery Cart Days - Whatever Floats Your Boat
Learn all about buoyancy and how it relates to aviation. Test your new skills by making your own tin foil boat — see how much weight your boat can hold! A Museum educator will engage you with hands-on materials from the education collection that will help explore these themes through interactive questions, experiments, and activities!
When: 11am-2pm
Where: College Park Aviation Museum, 1985 Corporal Frank Scott Drive, College Park 
Cost: $5/adults; $2/children

If you haven't checked this place out yet with your energetic 1-12 year old(s), then let this be the day!  This place is really great.  HUGE.  Two climbing walls.  Two foam pits.  Tons of equipment for curious ones to explore and blow off some steam.  Very clean.  Spaces are available on a first-come, first-serve basis. Parents are required to be on the floor with the children (Maximum 3 child:1 adult). 
When: 11:30am-12:30pm
Where: 8001 Sheriff Road, Landover
Cost: $7 per child. 

Enjoy a story, meet a live animal and make a craft. 
When: 2-3pm 
Where: Watkins Nature Center, 301 Watkins Park Drive, Upper Marlboro
Cost: Resident: $3; NR: $4 

Art for Kids - Pop Up Location!
Children's librarian Ms. Claudia will teach beginners' drawing with pencils, coloring pencils, crayons, pastel and acrylic. Ages 5-12.
When: 3-5pm
Where: St. Christopher's, 8001 Annapolis Rd, New Carrollton
Cost: Free!

Reader's Theatre
Children participate in fun reading activities that vary from performing skits, monologues, tongue twisters and poetry. Ages 8-12 preferred.
When: 4-5pm
Where: Greenbelt Library, 11 Crescent Rd, Greenbelt
Cost: Free!

STEM-tastic: Build Your Own Terrarium 
Learn about climate and the environment, plus make a terrarium for upcoming Earth Day! First come, first served. Ages 5-12.  Call 301-772-5477 to register in advance.
When: 4-5pm
Where: Glenarden Library, 8724 Glenarden Parkway, Glenarden
Cost: Free!

DIY Stop Motion Filmmaking - Pop Up! 
Learn to make movies with your smartphone or Ipad. Use our animation kits or bring your own objects from home to create scenery or props.  Ages 5-12.
When: 6-7pm
Where: St. Christopher's, 8001 Annapolis Rd, New Carrollton

THURSDAY 


Explore Insects
Explore the world of insects and learn about their life cycles and how they can be harmful or helpful. A short hike is included to search for some insects in their natural habitat.  Ages 7-13.
When: 10-11:30am
Where: Watkins Nature Center, 301 Watkins Park Drive, Upper Marlboro
Cost: Resident: $4; NR: $6

Discovery Cart Days - Four Forces of Flight
Explore how the four forces of flight can be manipulated in order to guide a flying object through the air by creating FPG9’s. A Museum educator will engage you with hands-on materials from the education collection that will help explore these themes through interactive questions, experiments, and activities!
When: 11am-2pm
Where: College Park Aviation Museum, 1985 Corporal Frank Scott Drive, College Park 
Cost: $5/adults; $2/children

Opera al Fresco
Your young one(s) interested in or curious about opera?  This could be a fun, free and interesting way to expose them to the art, with a casual preview of the Maryland Opera Studio's Scene Study Performances in the Clarice Smith Center's expansive Grand Pavilion.
When: 12:30pm
Where: The Clarice, Grand Pavilion
Cost: Free!

Where the Staircase Ends 
Come find us where the staircase ends for a Shel Silverstein inspired craft to celebrate poetry month.
When: 3-4pm
Where: Hyattsville Library, 6502 America Blvd, Hyattsville
Cost: Free!

FRIDAY 

Earth Day at Patuxent Research Refuge 
Celebrate Earth Day by learning how you can Reduce, Reuse and Recycle to benefit wildlife and the planet.  Program includes hands-on activities, games and crafts for ages 3+.
When: 10am-1pm
Where: Patuxent Research Refuge, 10901 Scarlet Tanager Loop, Laurel
Cost: Free!

Toddler Time @ Art Works Now
Open studio time for toddlers and their accompanying adults. Watercolor Tie Dye: Using watercolors and paper towels Toddlers will create and observe the magic of tie dye.
When: 10am-12pm
Where: Art Works Now, 3711 Rhode Island Ave, Mt. Rainier
Cost: $5

Storytime PopUp!  @ The Waterhole 
Join us for stories, songs, fingerplays and more at this innovation collaboration between PGCMLS & Mt. Rainier's fabulous organic juice & smoothie joint, The Waterhole. Best for 0-5 years old.  Curious?  Click here for my review of The Waterhole!
When: 10am
Where: The Waterhole, 4004 34th St., Mt. Rainier
Cost: Free (Heads-up: Waterhole's menu is delish, highly recommend indulging!)

Discovery Cart Days - Lift Off!
Learn about thrust, drag, and Newton’s Three Laws of Motion while making a balloon rocket. A Museum educator will engage you with hands-on materials from the education collection that will help explore these themes through interactive questions, experiments, and activities!
When: 11am-2pm
Where: College Park Aviation Museum, 1985 Corporal Frank Scott Drive, College Park 
Cost: $5/adults; $2/children

Rockin' 2 Rhythm 
Join us for a movement program that focuses on rhythm and keeping bodies strong. Ages 0-5.
When: 11-11:30am
Where: Hyattsville Library, 6502 America Blvd, Hyattsville
Cost: Free! 

Are you looking for something inspirational and stimulating for your daughter to do during Spring Break? This brunch will help your child answer the self-reflection question, "Who Am I?" Young ladies will participate in self-esteem building activities and thought-provoking conversation while enjoying a scrumptious brunch. Reservations are required. 
When: 11:30am-2:30pm 
Where: Bowie Community Center, 3209 Stonybrook Drive, Bowie 
Cost: Free!

Spring Break Bicycle Tour 
Wrap up your Spring Break with an afternoon guided bicycle tour along the new Anacostia River Trail. Bicycles and helmets are provided.  Ages 10 & up.
When: 1-3pm
Where: Bladensburg Waterfront Park
Cost: Residents: $5; NR: $7 

If you haven't checked this place out yet with your energetic 1-12 year old(s), then let this be the day!  This place is really great.  HUGE.  Two climbing walls.  Two foam pits.  Tons of equipment for curious ones to explore and blow off some steam.  Very clean.  Spaces are available on a first-come, first-serve basis. Parents are required to be on the floor with the children (Maximum 3 child:1 adult). 
When: 4:30-5:30pm
Where: 8001 Sheriff Road, Landover
Cost: $7 per child. 

Spring Skate Series (Ages 8-13)
Bring the family and join your friends at the Springhill Lake Recreation Center gymnasium. Roller-skates provided free of charge or bring your own.
When: 5-7pm
Where: Springhill Lake Recreation Center, 6101 Cherrywood Lane, Greenbelt
Cost: Free!

Forward Motion Dance Company 2017 Showcase
Check out this student-run organization founded on contemporary dance and their showcase of the pieces the company has worked on for the past year.  Maybe you have a budding dancer who would benefit from seeing others move in these inspiring ways!
When: 7:30pm
Where: The Clarice, Kay Theatre
Cost: Free!

ONGOING, FUN IDEAS! 

Rollingcrest's Indoor Splash Playground!

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Great for kids of all ages!  Specialized water play area with slides and spray features, family pool with water slides and spray features, a vending area and shower /changing facilities with lockers (lockers are available but require you to bring your own lock).  While parts of the facility are dated, kids always have a blast. 
When: Hours vary
Where: Rollingcrest Chillum Splash Pool, 6122 Sargent Road, Chillum 
Admission:  2 & under are free! Ages 3-17: $5. Adults:$6


Anacostia Riverwalk Trail - Kenilworth Aquatic Gardens 
Head to Bladensburg Waterfront Park (BWP) and explore the new 4-mile segment of the Trail now connecting the District with BWP!  We packed lunches, parked at BWP and then walked the Trail all the way to Kenilworth Aquatic Gardens.  It was lovely!  No traffic - just folks outside loving this new addition!  Grab a bit of respite at Kenilworth, maybe eat that lunch you packed and then head back to BWP, where the kids can play/climb/laugh in an old B & O caboose.
When: Sunrise to Sunset
Where: Start at BWP, 4601 Annapolis Road, Bladensburg
Cost: Free!   

Smaland at College Park's Ikea
Free, 1 hour, supervised, enclosed, safe & clean play area near the entrance.  Enjoy some shopping or just relax/eat/peoplewatch at the restaurant upstairs while your young one(s) has a blast at Smaland.  Children must be potty trained and be 37'' to 54'' tall (so children typically b/w ages of 3-6).  Tips: (1) Best to arrive earlier on in the day as day progresses, so do the entrances lines; & (2) Join Ikea Family & kids get extra 30 minutes to play (depending on capacity) & you get free coffee!
When: 10:30am - 7pm
Where: 10100 Baltimore Avenue, College Park
Admission: Free!

Patuxent Research Refuge (All Ages)
Get outdoors and take the kid(s) for a stroll through the Patuxent Research Refuge - inside & out!  Check out my review & ideas on prep here!
When: 9am-4:30pm
Where: 10901 Scarlet Tanager Loop, Laurel, MD 20708
Cost: Free!


PLAYGROUNDS! 

Playground at University Hills Duck Pond Park (All Ages)
Pack a picnic, check out the duck pond and then have fun at 1 of the 3 playgrounds at this park! There's one right at the entrance off of Wells Blvd but if you wander a bit on the bike path you'll find there's an even bigger one just down to the right with structures for the toddler and 5-12 crew.
When: Sunrise to sunset...
Where: 3400 Stanford St, Hyattsville
Cost: Free! 

Indian Creek Playground (All Ages)
Any time this weekend, check out this really fun and creative playground designed after Berwyn Heights' earliest residents - a group of Algonquian people known as Nacotchtank.  Kiddos will have  a blast climbing teepees, in an out of canoes and up and down dream catchers.  If you get hungry afterwards, check out
When: Sunrise to sunset
Where: 8900 56th Avenue, Berwyn Heights
Cost: Free!  

Paint Branch Parkway Park Playground (All Ages)
Get outside and check out this recently renovated playground, rivaling any great playground you've been to in DC, NYC or anywhere! Among other great things, its fireman's pole use a fun hydraulic lift to boost kids (and adventurous adults...) up and down a log plank is a blast! (I know some folks have had trouble locating this playground, so sharing some notes from our recent visit: If heading north on Route 1, make R on to Campus Drive, pass Aviation Museum, pass Ice Skating rink and shortly thereafter, will see small sign for "Calvert Road" (as well as sign for "Paint Branch Parkway" & "Disc Golf").  Make L and playground will be down a bit on your left.)
When:  Sunrise to sunset

Where: 5202 Campus Drive (if old GPS, enter 5202 Paint Branch Parkway), College Park 
Cost: Free!   



SPRING BREAK CAMPS 

Need to cover more than a morning or afternoon of activities this week, then check out these great local Spring Break Camps (spaces available as of 4/17/2017)!

Brentwood Arts Exchange
Engineering Mindz
Impulse City
Joe's Movement Emporium
Link Education
Washington Rowing School


 Always call or check the event website before heading out;
Event information is subject to change or weather cancellation.


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