By Lisa R. RhodesMarch 29, 2012
FORT GEORGE G. MEADE, Md. -- The start of the spring and Easter break for the Anne Arundel County Public Schools on Monday means families will be looking for inexpensive ways to have fun.
Below is a listing of family-friendly activities in Maryland, Washington, D.C., and Virginia that can be enjoyed for free or at a reasonable cost until April 9. Enjoy!
* Six Flags America, 13710 Central Ave., Mitchellville
Leisure Travel Services is offering a Month of the Military Child special for all-day park tickets for $23 per person for active-duty service members and DoD civilians from Saturday to April 9.
Tickets can be used throughout the week and include a free, daily ice-cream social at the park from 1 to 3 p.m.
Tickets can be purchased at LTS, which is located in the Outdoor Recreation building at 2300 Wilson St. For more information, call 301-677-7354.
* "We'll Knock Your 'Sox Off' " - Bowie Baysox Baseball Opening Game
The Baysox opens its 20th season against the Harrisburg Senators on April 5 at 7 p.m. at Prince George's Stadium, 4101 Crain Highway, Bowie.
Tickets can be purchased at www.baysox.com.
* Family Dance Jam
Dance & BMore, a professional dance company based in Baltimore, offers a free night of salsa, disco and hip-hop dancing for parents and children on Tuesdays from 6:30 to 7:30 p.m.
The event is located at St. John's Church, 2640 St. Paul St. at the corner of 27th Street, Baltimore. For more information, call 917-776-2728.
* Centennial Park, 10000 Route 108, Ellicott City
The 337-acre park features a paved, 2.6-mile walking, running and biking trail; a 54-acre, man-made lake; playgrounds; and nine picnic pavilions.
The lake is home to variety of wildlife such as white-tailed deer, beavers, foxes, turtles, herons and many other bird species, and is stocked with bass, trout, sunfish and tiger muskies for fishing.
The park is open from 7 a.m. to dusk. For more information, call 410-313-7271.
* Baltimore Art Museums
Baltimore features two free art museums: The Walters Art Museum and Baltimore Museum of Art.
The Walters Art Museum is internationally known for its renowned collection of art that includes pre-dynastic Egypt, 20th-century Europe, Greek sculptures and medieval paintings.
Located at 600 North Charles St., the Walters is open Wednesdays through Sundays from 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. For more information, call 410-547-9000
The Baltimore Museum of Art holds 90,000 works of art, including pieces by Pablo Picasso, Paul Cézanne and Vincent van Gogh.
Located at 10 Art Museum Drive, the BMA is open Wednesdays through Fridays from 10 a.m. to 5 p.m., and Saturdays and Sundays from 11 a.m. to 6 p.m. For more information, call 443-573-1700.
* National Cherry Blossom Festival
This year marks the centennial of the 3,000 cherry blossom trees given to the United States by Japan in 1912. The trees, which are located along the Tidal Basin, are part of an annual celebration until April 27.
* Live performances
Free and diverse music, dance, martial arts and marching band performances will be held Saturday until April 15 at the Sylvan Theater on the grounds of the Washington Monument.
Performances are held Sunday to Thursday from noon to 5 p.m., and Friday and Saturday from noon to 6 p.m.
For a listing of performances, visit www.nationalcherryblossomfestival.org.
* Documents of the Founding Fathers
Visitors to the National Archives can view the original Declaration of Independence, Constitution and Bill of Rights in the Rotunda for the Charters of Freedom at Constitution Avenue, NW, between 7th and 9th streets.
Advance reservations are recommended. The convenience fee for online reservations is $1.50 per person, although admission to all of the National Archive exhibits is free.
Reserved visits are available for guided tours Monday through Friday at 9:45 a.m.
Visitors can also wait in the general public line for entry at any time, starting at 10 a.m. until 90 minutes before closing at 7 p.m. until Labor Day.
For more information, visit www.archives.gov.
* The National Zoo
Visitors can view sloth bears, fishing cats, red pandas, clouded leopards, small-clawed otters, a Japanese giant salamander, orangutans and giant pandas along the zoo's Asia trail.
All animal exhibits are open daily until October from 10 a.m. to 6 p.m. Admission is free.