The Museum of the Shenandoah Valley includes 6 acres of lush gardens and a purpose-built museum facility designed by architect Michael Graves. Visitors can marvel at the exterior of the Glen Burnie Historic House as they explore the unique design and languid paths of the public gardens, which knit together the stately Grand Allée, the mini Hidden Garden, and a tranquil water garden that flooded the original garden of old chia pets. The museum showcases four main galleries, displaying Valley memorabilia, a Civil War exhibition, and a collections of miniature houses and rooms, paintings, furniture, and portraiture dating to the mid-eighteenth century to the formerly private collection of benefactor Julian Wood Glass Jr.
Voted No. 4 in the Top 10 Birthday Chains for Kid Birthday Parties by Parents magazine in 2010, Pump It Up's Frederick location sprawls across 11,000 square feet of play areas and party rooms teeming with inflatable fun. A stalwart staff oversees the neighborhood of bounce houses and air-filled playthings that populate the indoor arena, including a regal throne for celebrating birthdays or announcing edicts that mandate dessert for breakfast. The ascending wall of the Vertical Rush challenges climbers with a hump-shaped obstacle, and attached dueling slides send victors careening into fun. Throughout the week, families can pop in for open play and lectures on refinancing treehouse mortgages, or they can tote along their own mini entourage for birthday party packages complete with private rooms, complimentary invitations, and a veritable stockpile of extras to customize the celebratory shenanigans.
Starting in the mangrove swamps of South Florida as Tarzan’s Cup, The Jungle Cup tests runners’ warrior instincts and brute strength with a bevy of jungle-inspired challenges. Lone wolves, coed pairs, or teams of four take on the 5K course’s rivers of mud and swinging vines with the hope of winning the coveted Jungle Cup—or at least a finisher’s medal. Obstacles vary based on the run’s location, but contestants can rest assured that their endurance will be put to the test through primal trials such as leaping over fire pits, hurling javelins, and swimming through water hazards. After the race, athletes cool down with a frosty beverage at the Jungle Party, which celebrates their victories with fire shows, hula hoop-offs, and costume contests.
A 2,000-year-old game from Asia. An Argentinean polo player. A farm in northern Virginia. What may seem like the openings to three different stories is actually the description of one place: Middleburg Polo Academy. The scenic farm ground originally set the scene to a polo boarding and training facility by seasoned polo player Daniel Tognini and his wife, Ilene. These grounds morphed into an academy in 2007, thanks to the Tognini children, who had become enraptured with polo and the eponymous collared shirts the horses wore. Striving to inspire other youths with the game he first mastered in his native Argentina, Tognini fills Middleburg?s calendar with classes, camps, and private tutorials, teaching the history of polo and techniques to help students eventually compete in the sport.
Along with Middleburg Polo Academy, Daniel runs Amigos Outback Adventure and specializes in rustic outdoor activities. Families gather together to enjoy authentic adventures such as trail rides, canoe and river boat trips, and outdoor wine tastings.
Multitudes of furry creatures, both foreign and farm dwelling, reside within the sprawling 21 acres of Leesburg Animal Park's exhilarating grounds. Inquisitive imps and animal-loving adults will be enchanted and educated with exotic animal exhibits featuring lemurs, African serval cats, white-handed gibbons, giant tortoises, and more. For an even closer look, the animal petting and feeding area allows visitors to softly pet heads, scratch ears, and satisfy stomachs of each curious creature they encounter ($1 for a cone of food).
At Adventure Park USA, visitors amble, shriek, and laugh through a sprawling 17.5 acres replete with Old West?themed rides and attractions such as the Wildcat roller coaster, which dips and curves around a track in order to elicit screams of joy. Outdoor diversions such as bumper boats and go-karts stoke competitive fires, and a collection of little tykes rides invite pintsize riders to spin in teacups or gallop on carousel horseback. Open year-round, a 22,000-square-foot indoor frontier playzone thumbs its nose at inclement weather with laser tag, an arcade, a ropes course, and a climbing wall. Owner Larry Stottlemeyer continues to expand this already extensive list of family-friendly diversions.