«  Return to Explore More

The Best Things to do With Kids in Washington, D.C. This August

Things to Do DC/MD/VA
Photo Courtesy of Smithsonian American Art Museum Photo Courtesy of Smithsonian American Art Museum

It's officially the last month before school starts, but before then make sure to pack your calendar with these family-friendly events in Washington, D.C.! Don't let the back-to-school shopping get you and the kids down, celebrate the last bit of summer fun at one of D.C.'s festivals, out on the river on a tubing or white water rafting adventure or on a Ferris wheel at the fair. August is full of fun events for the whole family, enough fun to carry everyone through the start of the school year.

Check out our list of kid-approved August activities and events in the Washington, D.C. area, and soak up the last bit of summer fun in our nation's capital! 

Queens of Egypt Exhibit

Queens of Egypt Exhibition at the National Geographic Museum in Washington, D.C.
Explore ancient Egypt at the National Geographic Museum's newest exhibition, Queens of Egypt open throughout August. Learn about the role of Egyptian women and meet the powerful queens who shaped the modern world. Visitors of all ages will enjoy this unique exhibit that features over 300 artifacts and interactive experiences like a 3-D virtual tour of one of the most beautiful and well-preserved tombs in the Valley of the Queens, ancient Egyptian games and more!  Save 30% off tickets to the "Queens of Egypt" exhibition. Children under age 5 are free.

Summer Concerts on the Lawn at the North Lawn of the Library’s Thomas Jefferson Building in Washington, D.C. - FREE
Attend a summer concert on August 1st, 8th, and 15th right across the street from the U.S. Capitol at the north lawn of the Thomas Jefferson Building. Summer Concerts on the Lawn offer a variety of music like Go-Go, salsa, and West African Dance. You can find tickets for this free event HERE, and don't forget to stick around after the show is over for LOC Summer Movies on the Lawn.

Earthrise at The Kennedy Center

Earthrise at the Kennedy Center in Washington, D.C.
Celebrate the 50th anniversary of the moon landing by seeing Earthrise at the Kennedy Center, a play that follows the lives of three children of NASA employees who dream of traveling to the moon one day. Earthrise uses projections, songs, and NASA footage to capture the incredible feat of men landing on the moon for the first time. This show is recommended for ages 5 and up. Save 40% off Earthrise on August 1st, 2nd, 3rd, and 4th.

Find Your Zen at Freer Gallery of Art's Family Mindfulness Open Studio - FREE
End your summer on a zen note before heading into the craziness of the school year! The Freer Gallery of Art is hosting a summer meditation series for families every Friday from 4 p.m. - 5 p.m. Families with children ages 4 and up are invited to slow things down by reflecting in front of artworks and experiencing guided breathing, storytelling, and other beginner-friendly mindfulness techniques. No registration is required. First-come, first served.

Friendship Firehouse Festival in Alexandria, Virginia - FREE
The annual Friendship Firehouse Festival returns on August 3rd from 9 a.m. - 2 p.m. There will be fun for all ages with antique fire apparatus, craft booths, displays, and food. Kids will receive a free fire helmet and be given a supervised tour of the inside of a city's fire truck. Prepare for a day of fun and learning about the history of firefighting.

Water Lantern Festival Washington, D.C. Augsut 2019

Water Lantern Festival at National Harbor in Washington, D.C.
Light up the water along National Harbor at the Water Lantern Festival! Experience the magic of hundreds of lanterns shining on the water at this family-friendly festival as well as food, games, activities, vendors, music and more. As the sun sets, the lanterns will be launched on the water carrying hope, peace, and love. The festival takes place on August 3rd from 4 p.m. - 9:30 p.m. Save 10% off on Water Lantern Festival Tickets with this CertifiKID deal!

Smithsonian American Art Museum
Photo Courtesy of Smithsonian American Art Museum

Game at the Smithsonian American Art Museum Arcade in Washington, D.C. - FREE
The fifth annual Smithsonian American Art Museum (SAAM) Arcade will be held on August 3rd and 4th from 11:30 a.m. - 7 p.m. This free family-friendly event invites gamers of all levels to test out new games and replay some classics! This year's theme is "Breaking Barriers" and focuses on promoting equitable representation in the gaming industry.

Howard County Fair 2019

Howard County Fair in West Friendship, Maryland
End the last month of summer with a trip to the Howard County Fair! The fair will take place from August 3rd-10th with exciting attractions like magic shows, pig races, barns brimming with critters, and more. There will be something for everyone with kid rides, family rides, and thrill rides. Save 35% off an "unlimited rides" wristband for the 2019 Howard County Fair.

BrickFair Lego Expo DC 2019

BrickFair LEGO Fan Expo at Dulles Expo Center in Chantilly, Virginia
Master Builders and LEGO fans, prepare for a day of fun and creativity at the BrickFair LEGO Fan Expo on August 3rd-4th. Fans from across the country will bring their largest, most exciting LEGO projects to be featured in the show. There will be robots, castles, cars, entire cities, roller coasters, forest fires, and winding trains all made of LEGOs. There will also be fun activities and attractions like a "Stay & Play" room full of LEGO bricks for visitors to play with and create, a Reading Rest Stop, LEGO Derby racing, bounce houses, games and more! Save 40% off admission to BrickFair.

D.C. Summer Pop-Up Market in Washington, D.C.
Take the family out for a day of fun at the D.C. Summer Pop-Up Market on August 4th. The market will showcase unique locally-made crafts, including home decor and art, clothing and jewelry, apothecary products, baby gifts, letterpress stationery and everything in between. Admission to the event includes delicious drinks from Califia Farms, a make-your-own macrame keychain, art installations, and tons of freebies from market partners! Kids 12 and under are free. Click HERE to purchase tickets.

2019 Science in the Summer at D.C. Public Libraries in Washington, D.C.
Kids entering 2nd - 6th grade are invited to attend the Science in the Summer program on August 5th at Rosedale Library and Francis Gregory Library. This free program provides a fun educational science activity where kids can discover how their circulatory and digestive systems power their bodies and their brains to help them make sense of their experiences. They will also learn about DNA and how it makes them who they are. Click HERE to register for these free events and to check the time for your location.

Rockingham County Fair 2019

Rockingham County Fair in Harrisonburg, Virginia
Get ready for a day filled with fun at the Rockingham County Fair the week of August 12th-17th. The fair is located two hours southwest of D.C. in Harrisonburg, Virginia and is known as the LARGEST agricultural fair in the entire country! Each day of the fair will feature a new lineup of entertainment in addition to Motorcross, professional bull riding, demolition derby, and livestock events. Best of all, there will be tons of fair rides for kids, families, and thrill-seekers. Save 35% off an "unlimited rides" wristband at the 2019 Rockingham County Fair.

National Law Enforcement Museum

Learn About Korean Culture at the National Portrait Gallery - FREE
The National Portrait Gallery is hosting Korean Family Day in their Kogod Courtyard on Saturday, August 17th from 11:30 a.m. - 3 p.m. At this free event, kids can learn about Korea's rich culture, make crafts, experience lively music and view the exhibition "Portraits of the World: Korea", featuring pioneering feminist artist Yun Suknam.

Delve into the Collection: The Museum’s Weird and Wonderful Objects at National Law Enforcement Museum in Washington, D.C.
Curious museum visitors will have a chance to learn all about the National Law Enforcement Museum's weird and wonderful objects on August 22nd. Curator Lauren Sydney, the Collections Manager, will explain all about these unique objects and the special tools she uses to maintain them. This fun-filled afternoon will include science activities at the Learning Center, including the mechanics behind flight technology. Participants will be able to learn all about aviation and create their own working helicopter. This event is free with museum admission. Save up to 28% off admission to the National Law Enforcement Museum.

17th Street Festival at Dupont Circle in Washington, D.C. - FREE
Enjoy a free family-friendly festival on the Historic Dupont Main Streets. This community festival takes place on August 24th from noon to 6 p.m. Local shops and restaurants on 17th Street will also be participating in this fun event. The 17th Street Festival will include vendors, artists, a kids zone with an inflatable slide and more! The festival will take place rain or shine!

Library of Congress National Book Festival
National Book Festival Poster from 2018 Photo Courtesy of Library of Congress

Library of Congress National Book Festival at the Walter E. Washington Convention Center in Washington, D.C. - FREE
Bookworms big and small will want to head to the Library of Congress National Book Festival on August 31st from 8:30 a.m. - 8 p.m. This free festival will feature over 100 authors of all genres, including kid authors! Kids will be able to meet their favorite authors, have their picture taken with beloved storybook characters, and participate in fun activities. Enjoy the day getting lost in a book, playing games, and celebrating your favorite authors.

Berry Picking at Butler's Orchard

Go Berry Picking at Butler's Orchard in Germantown, Maryland
Take the family berry picking at Butler's Orchard, a fun summer activity for all ages! Pick some yummy blueberries, raspberries and blackberries, and make sure you save some to take home to bake pies and desserts! When finished picking, explore the 5-acre farm and all its attractions like giant slides, wooden climbing structures, nature trails, farm animals, and more! Save 43% off a Summer U-Pick Outing at Butler's Orchard! 

Water Mine Family Swimmin' Hole in Reston, Virginia
Water Mine Family Swimmin' Hole in Reston, Virginia

End Your Summer With a Splash at an Area Water Park!
Slide, splash and play at one of the many water parks in the Washington, D.C. area before they close for the season! Choose from some of our local favorites below and save up to 50% off admission with our deals!

White Water Rafting at Harpers Ferry Adventure Center

Plan a Family-Friendly Tubing or Rafting Adventure
D.C. offers plenty of family-friendly water tubing, rafting, paddle boarding, and pedal boarding locations! This is the perfect summer activity to cool off in the warm temps while enjoying a relaxing float on a lazy river or an adrenaline pumping white water rafting adventure. Check out our article on The Best Places to go Tubing Within 3 Hours of Wasington, D.C. to find your family's next exciting summer adventure!

For more family-fun this month check out our Things to do in August with Kids in Baltimore

Tags: Family Friendly Events Washington DC Kids Activities August 2019


CertifiKID was founded by a mom with a passion for helping parents provide the best experiences for their children on a budget. From outings to adventures, classes to camps, theater to sporting events, amusement parks to getaways, CertifiKID provides the best family-friendly experiences at unbeatable prices. Sign up for family-friendly deals in your area and start saving!