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You know how your kids can literally run circles around you? Let them put that energy to good use at one of the many kid-friendly races the DMV offers. Whether you’re lacing up your running shoes for the first time or gearing up for another running season, we’ve tracked down a wide selection of local races across the DMV and throughout the rest of the year. All of them welcome strollers and kids, some have kids’ fun runs, and each one has a special perk to make it fun for the whole family. See you out there!

Photo: Capitol Hill Classic

Crystal City 5K Fridays
Run one or all of the 5K Fridays races with your mini-bundles of energy. They’ll get the wiggles out while you blow off some end of the week steam. Grown-ups, don’t forget to grab your post-race drink tickets that can be used at nearby watering holes.

Cost: $20-$25
When: Friday evenings in April
Where: Crystal City

Arlington Bunny Hop
A fun, festive way to run together as a family, this 5K raises money for charity. Costumes are welcome (er, encouraged), and medals for all kids who finish will be handed out. Stick around for the block party afterwards, featuring free food, bounce houses and live music.

Cost: $5-$45
When: April 27, 8 a.m.
Where: 606 N. Irving St. (Arlington, VA)

Photo: Teddy Bear 5K

Parkway Classic
Known as Alexandria’s Hometown Race, runners can opt for the 5k, 10-mile or kids dash races. The 10-miler starts at Mount Vernon and follows the GW Parkway to Oronoco Bay Park in Old Town, while the 5k takes off from Belle Haven Park. The Sugar Shack Kids Dash is an 800-meter dash, and participants get a race bib, a medal and a Sugar Shack doughnut at the end. Note that parents may run with their dashers, and the event is limited to 300 participants. It requires pre-registration, and strollers are permitted.

Cost: $10-$80
When: Apr. 28, 8 a.m. races, 10:30 a.m. kids dash
Where: 3200 Mount Vernon Hwy. Mount Vernon; Belle Haven Park, Alexandria; corner of Oronoco St. and North Union St. (Alexandria, Va) 

Spring Georgetown 5K and Half
This scenic run on a flat course along the C&O Canal Path is perfect for runners and joggers with strollers. There are medals for all finishers.

Cost: $25-$60
When: May 26, 8 a.m.
Where: 3530 Water St., NW (Georgetown)


Photo: teddy b via flickr

Capitol Hill Classic
The 40th annual race, which winds by sights such as the U.S. Capitol, Supreme Court and Library of Congress, will end with music and yoga. It raises money for the Capitol Hill Cluster School, a D.C. public school with more than 1,000 students. Medal winners are divided by age: under 15 and 15 to 19 for kids. Jogging strollers are permitted.

Cost: $10-$80
When: May 19, 10:30 a.m. fun run
Where: 425 C St., NE

Maryland Half Marathon and 5K
The 11th annual race benefits the University of Maryland Marlene and Stewart
Greenebaum Cancer Center. For their efforts, all kids fun run finishers (who will cross the same finish line as the grown-up half marathoners!) receive a medal.

Cost: $20-$40
When: June 8
Where: The Maple Lawn Community

Photo: David Ingram via Flickr

Kids Superhero Dash for Dad (ZERO Prostate Cancer Run/Walk)
The 1-mile dash (and the 5k run/walk) raise money for prostate cancer research, screening and education. Participants get a T-shirt and free food. Strollers are permitted, but race organizers ask that racers start at the back and give the right of way to runners.

Cost: $15-$35
When: Jun. 15, 8:15 a.m.
Where: 1101 S. Joyce St. (Arlington, Va)

Stroller Run
This 5k for parents and their kids benefits local charities so you can feel good about doing something for yourself and for others. Post-race perks include child care so you can relax and enjoy nearby shopping and refreshments.

When: June 29, 10 a.m.

—Tricia Mirchandani and Stephanie Kanowitz



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A Georgetown Kind of Day

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This is the perfect time of year to get out and about in our hometown. And where better to spend a day than among the cobblestone streets and charming scenery of Georgetown. Here are our suggestions on what to see, where to eat, and how to play.

Photo: Dumbarton Oaks Gardens


Begin your day by just wandering down M Street. Be sure to make it to the Old Stone House, the oldest house in D.C. It’s temporarily closed for rehabilitation but makes for a fun bit of history as you stroll. When you’re ready to veer off the beaten path of the Georgetown’s main street for a little more history and nature, you’ve got a couple choices.

Tudor Place
Head north on 31st street to Tudor Place, an 1816 estate offering daily tours. 

Cost: $10/adults; $3/kids
1644 31st St., NW

Dumbarton Oaks Gardens
Keep walking north and make your way to Dumbarton Oaks Gardens, a museum surrounded by beautiful gardens, perfect for running and playing

1703 32nd St., NW

C&O Canal Towpath
Wander towards the river and pick up a stretch of the C&O Canal Towpath


Georgetown’s Hogwarts
Make your way to Georgetown University and check out our own local Hogwarts—known to students as Healy Hall

O St. at 37th St., NW

Photo: Il Canale


All of that walking will work up an appetite and you’ll find no shortage of restaurants in Georgetown. For our favorites, check out:

Delicious food in a welcoming atmosphere is enough to draw us in. But add in bocce and bowling with game-side food service and we can’t stay away. 

1064 Wisconsin Ave., NW

Il Canale
Pizza for the kids. A truly authentic Italian experience that will have you feeling as though you’ve made it to Naples for the adults. Everybody’s happy. (

1065 31st St., NW

If you’re in Georgetown, then you’re having cupcakes. Our favorites are the classics: Georgetown Cupcake, Sprinkles, and Baked & Wired.

Photo: Daniel Lobo via flickr


With full bellies, find a place to play for the rest of the day.

Georgetown Waterfront
While the splash park is gone for the season and ice skating hasn’t started yet, the Georgetown Waterfront still offers plenty of space to run around, a Labyrinth to follow, lovely river views and overlooks, and a functioning steam gauge.


Big Wheel Bikes
Take a break from walking and hop on a set of wheels. Big Wheel Bikes offers bike rentals so you can go farther and see more.

1034 33rd St., NW

—Tricia Mirchandani

featured image: NPS 


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In case you haven’t had time to create your own list full of action-packed, sun-drenched ideas for things to do with kids in Washington DC with rainy-day backup plans (let alone made a pinnable or insta-fablulous version), we’ve got you covered. Here’s our ultimate summer bucket list that will take you straight through to Labor Day.

Photo: National Harbor

#1 Take in an outdoor movie
Check out this DMV-wide schedule for family friendly flicks. 

#2 Kayak, paddleboat or SUP (aka stand up paddle boarding)
Head over to the Key Bridge Boathouse to take a class or rent a boat or board.

#3 Pick some berries
Wherever you live, there is a pick-your-own farm not too far away.

#4 Visit the animals
Head to the National Zoo, the Reston Petting Zoo or Brookside Gardens Butterfly exhibit.

#5 Go for a hole in one
Is it summer if you never step on the greens? We don’t think so. Here are a few places to play.

Upton Hill Regional Park (Arlington, Va)
East Potomac Mini Golf
Gaithersburg Mini Golf Course (Gaithersburg, Md)

Photo: Downtown Silver Spring

#6 Get wet
Summer = splashing. If you don’t belong to a pool or you haven’t found your favorite splash park, what are you waiting for?

#7 Ride the Capital Wheel at National Harbor
But don’t stop there. National Harbor is a families playground.  

#8 Roam around Roosevelt Island
It’s actually one of the most baby-friendly places to hike in the DMV. 

#9 Tour Mount Vernon
George Washington’s home-sweet-home will fill up a blank afternoon in no time. 

#10 Spend a relaxing morning at Glen Echo Park
The puppet shows for kids are on point here. FYI!

Photo:Joe Flood via flickr

#11 Stroll around a classic D.C. market
Don’t miss Eastern Market or Union Market.

#12 Spread out at the Georgetown Waterfront
This iconic neighborhood may require a double header–come back the next day for more fun. 

#13 Head to the Chesapeake for a day or spend the night
Follow geotrails, go boating, hunt for fossils, and more!

#14 Explore underground at Luray Caverns
Whether you want to tire the kids out on an endless hike, ride an elevator 34 stories down, or listen to nature’s pipe organ, the opportunity to go spelunking is just a cave away.

#15 Go off to see the Wizard at Watkins Regional Park Wizard of Oz Playground
Don’t forget your camera! There’s a real life yellow brick road at this park for your crew to skip down. 

Photo: Urban Pirates

#16 Take an Urban Pirates Ride on the Potomac
Perfect that pirate aaaarrrrrgggghhh!

#17 Three words: yoga with goats
Yes, goats. What more is there to say about that?

#18 Take your team out to the ballgame
Of course we’re rooting for the
Nationals if the Orioles.

#19 Oooh and ahhh at fireworks on the 4th of July
Scope out the best spots to set up here.

#20 Celebrate at the Capital Pride Festival
There are family friendly Pride activities scattered across the DMV throughout the month of June.

Photo: Smithsonian Folklife Festival

#21 Share culture at the Smithsonian Folklife Festival
This free festival, which features master artisans and tradition bearers, takes place for two weeks every summer, overlapping the Fourth of July holiday.

#22 Take in an outdoor show
Check out Wolf Trap Children’s Theater in the Woods or the Strathmore Backyard Theater.

#23 Check out some of your favorite monuments at night.
These ones are particularly stunning under the stars:

#24 Relax with Jazz in the Garden
Insider secret: Jazz is a great way to lull a sleepy baby into dreamland. 

#25 Experience ‘No Spectators: The Art of Burning Man’ at the Renwick Gallery
Immersive room-sized installations, costumes, and jewelry will keep your kids wanting to see more and more of this exhibit

Photo: Badlands

#26 Play and stay dry at an indoor playground
If you haven’t visited Badlands yet, a rainy summer day is the perfect time to do it! 

#27 Check out your local library website for Summer Reading
Here’s a story time cheat sheet for all ages.

#28 Go bowling.
These are the best lanes for families:
White Oak Duckpin Lanes:
Bowl America:

#29 Roll around on some skates
Show off your moves at Skate N Fun Zone or Temple Hills Skate Palace.

#30 Eat all of the ice cream
With this many cool treats, there’s no time for watching that waistline.

—Tricia Mirchandani

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India has the Taj Mahal. New York City has the Empire State Building. San Fran has the Golden Gate Bridge. And while the DMV has its fair share of majorly cool monuments, to give your young DC-natives all the street cred they need make sure these epic must-sees and must-dos are part of their district-kid experience.

Photo: thisisbossi via flickr

1. The Awakening at National Harbor
It’s a man coming out of the ground. And you can climb on his face. ‘Nuff said.

National Harbor
153 National Plaza (Oxon Hill, Md)

2. Space Window and Darth Vadar Gargoyle at the National Cathedral
Fans of stars and Star Wars alike should at this to their bucket lists.

National Cathedral
3101 Wisconsin Ave., NW

3. D.C. Center Point
The point at which the city’s four quadrants intersect. Shouldn’t the center of your world stand in the center of the city at least once?

4. National Bonsai Museum
One of the super pruned, mini trees at this National Arboretum housed museum dates back to 1625. Not a typo.

3501 New York Ave., NE

Photo: tae dc via flickr

5. The Big Chair
Once a marketing stunt for furniture company Curtis Brothers Furniture, this 19.5 foot chair is now an iconic DC landmark.

Martin Luther King Ave. and V St., S.E. (Anacostia)

6. Capitol Building
Just about as American as apple pie, the Capitol Building is included in daily Capitol Tours.

7. Dupont Underground
Tunnels and platforms below Dupont Circle have been turned into a fascinating underground contemporary art space. You just have to see it. 


Photo: anokarina via flickr

8. Technicolor Church
With a blast of color inside and out, this old Church is nothing short of awesome for little rainbow-colored-everything lovers.

700 Delaware Ave., SW

9. Mansion on O St.
This is a series of five interconnected townhouses (!!) with tons of mystery that is part hotel, part museum.

2020 O St., NW

10. Discovery at Steven F. Udvar-Hazy Center
You don’t get much more epic than the Discovery Shuttle up close and amazing.

14390 Air and Space Museum Pkwy. (Chantilly, Va)

11. The Natural History Museum at Night
Relive Night at the Museum for the most epic sleepover ever. Bonus: you don’t have to clean up popcorn from your carpet the next morning!


What’s the most epic thing you’ve seen or done in the DMV? Tell us in the comments below. 

—Tricia Mirchandani

Fresh Starts: Local Help for Spring Cleaning

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It’s time to tuck away boots and mittens. Open the windows. Find your picnic blanket. And if that last one proves problematic, maybe add a bit of spring cleaning to your list. Spring is a great time to clear out a bit of clutter, deep clean those often-ignored spots, and generally freshen up your space—whether that’s a closet, a room, an office, or your entire home. Eager for that clean spring feeling but need a little help getting there? We’ve got a roundup of some of the area’s best places to turn.

Photo: Mindful Decluttering


Clear out the Clutter

Declutter DC
If you were curious about Marie Kondo’s Life-Changing Art of Tidying Up when it first came out but could never quite get to it, this is your chance. Jenny Albertini, a former US government diplomat, formed her home organization firm Declutter DC around the KonMari Method to create a service for home or office organizing. She also offers workshops and trainings. Serving: D.C. area.


Simplify You
Sometimes you need whole-house help. Sometimes, you need to focus on one trouble area (struggling with photo management, anyone?) In addition to offering general decluttering, renovation help and moving organization, Simplify You also has a team of specialists who can jump into those typical problem areas like a decluttering ninja. After all, wouldn’t it feel great to get a decades’ worth of photos organized before you add a hundred more this summer? Serving: Arlington and surrounding areas.


Mindful Decluttering
Clearing out clutter can be a very personal endeavor. We’re talking memories and mementoes and things we aren’t eager to part with. Mindful Decluttering brings a personalized approach to their work, styling a system for you so that you can feel good about the process, and keep it up when they’re gone. They even including decluttering of your schedule with time management help. If you’re out of the area, the team also offers virtual decluttering. Serving: Takoma and surrounding areas.


Clean Everything

DC Maids
Call them for anything from carpet cleaning to same day/emergency service to regular cleanings. Serving: D.C. area.



For your home or your small business location, Mkclean offers one-time, weekly, semi-monthly and monthly cleaning options for everyone in the DMV. Serving: D.C., Md., Va.


Green Maid
Booking Green Maid, for a one-time cleaning or a regular occurrence, is easy with their online booking system. Serving: D.C., Md., Va.


Donate to a Good Cause

Martha’s Table
Donations to Martha’s Outfitters support stronger children, families, and community in the District. Donations accepted: clothing, housewares, tech

2114 14th St., NW,; 2204 Martin Luther King Ave., SE, 202-885-9613

The Twig Thrift Shop
The Junior Auxiliary of Inova Alexandria Hospital, The Twig is an organization of women dedicated to providing financial aid, volunteer service, and support to Alexandria HospitalDonations accepted: clothes, shoes, jewelry, accessories, small furniture, kitchen goods, small kitchen appliances, sporting equipment, books.

106 N. Columbus St. (Alexandria, Va)

Montgomery County Thrift Shop
This charitable non-profit organization sells affordable used and vintage materialsDonations accepted: clothing, shoes, bedsheets, towels, jewelry, watches, musical instruments, home décor, books, games, screens.

7125 Wisconsin Ave. (Chevy Chase, Md)

Do you have a go-to organizing or cleaning company? Tell us about it in the cmoments below. 

—Tricia Mirchindani

Bundle Up and Hit the Road: Drivable Winter Destinations

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Great news to cure your winter blues: you don’t have to wait until spring or summer to pack up the car and get out of town. We’ve got four road trip destinations perfect for an upcoming long weekend or mid-winter break.

Photo: Avalanche Express

Lancaster, Pa.
There is much more to Lancaster than buggy rides. For outdoorsy types, try snow tubing or ice skating at Avalanche Express. The slope and rink are located at the Heritage Hills Athletic Club where you’ll also find a spa and laser tag when you’re ready to come in from the cold. If you’d rather stay indoors, check out the Antique Automobile Club of America Museum, featuring rooms of antique cars plus an old drive-in movie replica, an old fashioned diner and the Hershey Kissmobile Cruiser.

Speaking of old fashioned diners, start your day at DJs Taste of the 50s for breakfast. It’s a 50s-style diner with all of the classics. Then go a bit more upscale later in the day at Iron Hill Brewery for a great kids menu and, of course, plenty of beer.

Finally, kid-friendly is the name of the game for Lancaster hotels, like the Bird-in-Hand Family Inn offering family suites, farm tours, a petting zoo, an indoor pool and hot tub, and a family restaurant. If you’re looking for something a bit more resort-like, book a suite or villa at the Best Western Eden Resort & Suites and enjoy the kids play and water zones plus 2 onsite dining options.

Antique Automobile Club of America Museum
Avalanche Express

Bird In Hand Family Inn
Best Western Eden Resort & Suites

Iron Hill Brewery
DJs Taste of the 50s

Photo: mama! mia! via flickr

Williamsburg, Va.
If a trip to Williamsburg doesn’t fit into your summer vacation, try planning a winter trip. With average highs in the mid 40s, it might be a little chilly but you can break up the typical outdoor tours with stops in any of the area’s museums. The musicians among you will enjoy the Virginia Musical Museum and history buffs will enjoy the American Revolution Museum at Yorktown. Stay at the ever family-friendly Great Wolf Lodge, with a ginormous indoor waterpark, arcade and bowling alley, for even more to do if the weather is bad. And try Food for Thought for a fun and entertaining meal.

American Revolution Museum at Yorktown
Virginia Musical Museum

Great Wolf Lodge

Food for Thought

3282403641_663a41214f_zPhoto: janhatesmarcia via Flickr

Richmond and Virginia Beach, Va
It’s always tempting to head south in winter. While you won’t find significantly warmer temperatures at the end of this four-hour drive, you will find a true winter beach experience. Rudee Tours will take you out on the ocean to watch Humpback and Fin whales making their seasonal migration along the Atlantic Seaboard. You can also go horseback riding on the beach, if you are brave (or bundled!) enough.

And, since you’ll pass through Richmond on your way to the beach, make it a double road trip and spend a day there on your way. You’ll get to take in the Children’s Museum of Richmond or the Science Museum of Virginia.

When in Richmond, stay at the Courtyard Marriott Richmond Downtown for its incredibly convenient location. When in Virginia Beach, stay at the Holiday Inn & Suites North Beach for its indoor lazy river and pool.

Citrus, famously featured on Diners, Drive-ins and Dives, serves up great beach food year-round. And don’t miss The Dairy Bar in Richmond.

Rudee Tours
Children’s Museum of Richmond
Science Museum of Virginia

Courtyard Marriott Richmond Downtown
Holiday Inn & Suites North Beach

The Dairy Bar

screenshot-2016-12-22-at-3-48-10-pmPhoto: Massanutten Resort

Shenandoah Valley
If you’d rather a simpler road trip with just one stop, head for the Shenandoah Valley and book a room or villa at Massanutten Resort. While you’re there, you can head out to the slopes for skiing, ice skating or snowboarding. Or pretend it’s summer at the indoor waterpark. Enjoy the resort’s Beer Lover’s Dinner or try to please everyone at the local Virginia BBQ and Pizza.

Massanutten Resort

Virginia BBQ and Pizza

Photo: padraics_travels via flickr

Harpers Ferry National Historic Park, WVa.

One of several Civil War history hot spots in the region, Harper’s Ferry National Park has the most to see and do, not to mention its location along the famed Appalachian Trail. While standing on the fields of Antietam or Gettysburg offers great perspective on the bloodshed of the Great Rebellion, this town instead tells the story of what it was like to live during that time. Online:

Harpers Ferry Adventure Center
Appalachian National Scenic Trail

Stonehouse Bed and Breakfast

Country Cafe and General Store
Potomac Grill

Where will you road trip to this winter? Tell us in the comments below.

–Tricia Mirchandani

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Staycations are great. Staycations where you aren’t tempted to clean out the closet or toss in a load of laundry, just because, are even better. For a staycation with all the comforts of home, but not in your actual home, we’ve found some of the most unique and massive (so invite another family!) home rentals in the area. Check them out!

Koi Ponds in Dupont Circle
The rooftop pool is just the beginning. This 5-bedroom, 5-bathroom house also hosts koi and turtles in two separate koi ponds. Add to that a London-style phone booth and a projector screen in the TV room, and you may never want to go back home. Cost: $975/night

Historic Mansion in Logan Circle
Formerly the site of a civil war hospital, this 8-bedroom, 6-bathroom mansion offers 360 views of Washington DC, including a great view of the Washington Monument, from the private roof deck. Cost: $680/night

Mansion in Potomac Village
If you prefer a less urban mansion, this one in Potomac Village offers 6 bedrooms, 4.5 bathrooms and enough grounds to spread out and enjoy a little (or a lot of) downtime outside of the city. Cost: $899/night

Estate with Everything in Virginia
With a heated pool and hot tub, tennis and racquetball courts, and balconies galore, this space is perfect for a staycation with extended family or a group of friends. Talk about a super sleepover! Cost: date dependent. 

Super Kid-Friendly Space on U St.
Designed by an award-winning Toronto architect, this house is designed to make your kids feel like Christmas came early. It’s stocked with all kinds of games, toys, crafts, and dress-up clothes. They also have step stools, high chairs, and night lights to make being away from home so much easier. Cost: $500/night

Do you know of any other cool, local home rentals that would be great for a group staycation? Share them in the comments section below. 

-Tricia Mirchandani

Retreat from the Heat: 14 Places to Find Fun Indoors

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August in the DMV is known to be stifling, sweltering and too hot even for a day at the pool. But even amidst the high temperatures and even higher humidity, it is still summer after all. And summer is meant to be fun. So we rounded up a list of places to retreat from the heat and still have a blast. If you’re tired of ducking into a movie theatre or wandering the mall to get a break from the sun, this is a list for you.

Photo: Nook Play Well

Kids’ Gyms

Avoid the sunscreen and bug spray but still work in some playground time at these local indoor kids’ gyms.

Busy Bees
What: Small and contained soft place space.
Best for: infants and young toddlers.
Where: Falls Church or Chevy Chase
                                                                                                                                  Jumping Joeys
What: A giant room packed with bouncy houses
Best for: preschoolers and elementary school kids with bottled up energy
Where: Arlington and Falls Church

Magic Ground
What: Climb, draw, play pretend and more
Best for: toddlers and preschoolers
Where: 3100 14th St., NW

What: Beautiful, minimalist play space
Best for: infants and toddlers
Where: 5649 Lee Hwy. (Arlington, Va)

What: Nature inspired playspace and interactive environment with place to build, climb, draw, and tinker Best for: ages 2-13
Where: 5200 Randolph Rd. (Rockville, Md)

Photo: ClimbZone

Rock Climbing

Continue the sunscreen-free fun at these local rock climbing gyms.

Earth Treks
What: 45,000 sq. feet and more than 400 roped routes
Best for: teens
Where: Crystal City, Va and Rockville, Md

What: Themed climbing walls like Jack and the Beanstalk, the Empire State Building, and a spider web
Best for: kindergartners and older
Where: 13200 Mid Atlantic Blvd. (Laurel, Md)

Sport Rock
What: Indoor rock climbing with programs for kids ages 5 and up
Best for: kindergartners and older
Where: Alexandria, Va and Sterling, Va

Photo: Hot Skates

Roller/Ice Skating

Really cool down at an ice rink or strap on some wheels for an afternoon of roller skating, just like we used to do as kids.

What: Public skates daily throughout the summer
Best for: preschoolers and older
Where: 627 N. Glebe Rd. (Arlington, Va)

Skate N Fun Zone
What: Public Skate daily with skate mates for beginners plus an arcade, small jungle gym, and laser tag
Best for: preschoolers and older
Where: 7878 Sudley Rd. (Manassas, Va)

Hot Skates
What: Public skate daily, special character skate events, and skate camp
Best for: preschoolers and older
Where: 1716 Whitehead Rd. (Woodlawn, Md)

Photo: ftmeade via Flickr


Keep cool while sparing pins and having fun.

Bowlmore Bethesda
What: Glow in the dark lanes, plus an arcade
Best for: all ages
Where: 5353 Westbard Ave. (Bethesda, Md)

WhiteOak Duckpin Lanes
What: Pintsized bowling
Best for: preschoolers to young elementary schoolers
Where: 11207 New Hampshire Ave. (Silver Spring, Md)

Bowl America
What: Many locations for good old fashioned bowling fun
Best for: all ages
Where: several throughout MD and VA


What is your favorite hot weather indoor hideaway? Tell us in the comments below.

–Tricia Mirchandani

5 Local Fountains Worth Planning Your Day Around

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If you’re a parent of mobile children, then you’ve spent some time around fountains. They pop up everywhere: in the center of the mall, at your neighborhood outdoor shopping center, or in random places as you walk around town. And kids can’t get enough of ogling the sprays of water, dipping tiny fingers into the shallow pools, and tossing in pennies rescued from the bottom of your purse. Normally these fun water features are interruptions in your day. But we’ve got five fountains that are worth more than just a random pass-by. Beautiful, legendary, and conveniently located near other fun points of family interest, you’ll want to make an excursion just to see them. (Don’t forget the pennies.)

Photo: Mihir R. via Yelp

Sculpture Garden Fountain at the National Gallery of Art
Water arcs skyward from the perimeter of this expansive fountain set right outside the National Gallery of Art. But the best part is that you can sit along the edge and dip your feet in. Kids will love watching the water shoot intermittently into the air. And when they get antsy, you can duck into the Pavilion Café for a snack or walk through the Sculpture Garden.

3rd and 9th Sts., NW on Constitution Ave., NW

Photo: Matthew U. via Yelp

WWII Memorial
Nestled in the middle of a ring of pillars, the fountain at the WWII Memorial dazzles young and old. While you can’t play in the fountain, you can enjoy the view as you wander around and look for your home state’s pillar. When you’ve had your fill of the fountain, wander further along the Mall for more to see or space to run around.

1750 Independence Ave., SW

Photo: Daniel S. via Yelp

Dupont Circle
One of the more architecturally intricate fountains in the area, the fountain that marks the center of Dupont Circle features a design by sculptor Daniel Chester French in which three figures represent the Sea, the Stars and the Wind. Sit along the edge to take in the sights and sounds of the famous circle. Then walk a few blocks to either Stead Park or Mitchell Park for some playground time. You could also drop into Kramer Books or stop for lunch at Pizza Paradiso.

1 Dupont Cir., NW

Photo: Hazel C. via Yelp

Bartholdi Fountain
Stop by the Bartholdi Fountain on your way to or from a visit to the U.S. Botanic Gardens. Also known as the Fountain of Light and Water, the entire basin lights up at night but the view is just as lovely in daylight.

100 First St., SW

Photo: Ilhana V. via Yelp

Meridian Hill Park Fountain
The 13-basin cascading fountain at Meridian Hill Park is the longest cascading fountain in North America. After you enjoy the view, roam around the park’s green space to run, play, and picnic. Stop by on Sundays and experience the Meridian Hill Park Sunday Drum Circle.

16th & W Sts.

What’s your favorite local fountain? Tell us in the comments below. 

–Tricia Mirchandani