It’s not easy staying in and missing out on many of the creative outlets (and creative people) while we’re social distancing. But a lot of our local businesses including the DC Public Library, Busboys and Poets, and U Street Music Hall are bringing many of your favorite events online. Here are a few online activities you can do you at home – many with the littlest city dwellers in mind.
Stream the Environmental Film Festival: The Environmental Film Festival is usually a ticketed event with film screenings hosted by National Geographic and embassies around DC. Since the scheduled screenings in March had to be canceled, the films are now available online – most for free. Topics include conservation, ocean life, city planning (including DC stories), sustainability, and more. Films can vary in intensity but anyone with a love for environmental science can enjoy. Check out the descriptions to help determine what is appropriate for your younger viewers. Through March 31 only.
Recommend for: ages 10+
Lynda: The DC Public Library resources are still available online but did you know you can access Lynda, an online learning tool for free with your library card? Lynda is a full-time benefit of being a library cardholder and not limited to this time inside. Most classes are geared more toward professionals trying to learn a new skill but your teen might enjoy learning an internet skill that isn’t normally covered in public school.
Recommended for: teens+
Storytime with DC Public Library: Look for live and prerecorded storytime on their Facebook page with fun stories for your little ones. This is a regular program normally held at the library with stories geared toward toddlers and preschoolers.
Recommended for: ages 0-6
Explore The Capitol and Library of Congress Virtually: You can explore The Capitol building and the nearby Library of Congress with 360 tours on their site. Navigate through the area, go directly to key rooms of interest, and read the history of the artechture as you explore.
Recommend for: approximately age 10+
Family Jams at the Strathmore: Join the Strathmore on Saturday mornings at 10:15 am via Facebook for music appreciation. Each Saturday, learn about folk, go-go, classical, bluegrass, and soul from expert musicians. Find the schedule online through April 25. This is normally a ticketed event on the Strathmore lawn so donations are welcome.
Recommended for: ages 4-8
Rise, Rhyme, and Read: Join Busboys and Poets on Facebook Live at 6 PM on Mondays, Wednesdays, and Fridays. Get ready for kid-friendly music, stories, and body movements. Hosted by Culture Queen, this is a great way to engage your little ones in self-love and fun learning.
Recommended for: ages 2-8
Live Streams with U Street Music Hall: Pour yourself a drink (beer, whiskey, apple juice, etc.) and follow U Street Music Hall on Facebook to get notifications about free live streams organized by their DJs. They’ve already put one together for their 10th-anniversary party and there’s more to come. If you are able, consider their GoFundMe and make a donation to help support them.
Recommend for: all ages. Party lights shown on an empty dance floor from the DJ booth but minimal language.
305 YouTube Channel: As mentioned in the fitness post, 305 Fitness located near U Street is doing live streams daily at noon and 6 pm EST. You can also watch prerecorded live streams and other videos. Classes feel more like a dance party than a workout so get your family in on the fun.
Recommended for: teens+ for twerking and some mild language. Younger kids welcome if you don’t mind some suggestive booty shaking.
Lunch Doodles with Mo Willems: Every weekday at 1 pm, The Kennedy Center releases a Lunch Doodle video with printable activity pages. Videos are geared toward little ones but are truly enjoyable for anyone who needs a coloring break.
Recommended for: age 2+; everyone
Virtual Yoga at the Botanical Gardens: The Botanical Gardens have moved their Saturday Garden Yoga online through April 4. There are a lot of ways to practice yoga at home but there’s something about being in the beautiful gardens. Find the link on their site and get online early. The stream is capped at 500 people.
Recommended for: ages 10+ or any age with an hour-long attention span for yoga.
Cherry Blossom Cam: The Tidal Basin isn’t the best place to be right now. But you can still catch the beautiful tree using the Cherry Blossom Cam or check out the beautiful photos added to Cherry Blossom Watch.
Recommended for: everyone
Instagram Live Poetry Slam: Join Busboys and Poets on Instagram Live for a Poetry Slam on Mondays, Wednesdays, and Fridays from 8 to 10 pm. Celebrate life and art with creatives from all walks of life. These sessions are focused on poetry but will also feature musicians, comedians, and other artists.
Recommended for: older teens+