Gaylord National sits on the banks of the Potomac River, which flows south from DC to the Atlantic Ocean. Outside the resort, a water taxi ferries passengers across the Potomac to the port town of Alexandria, Virginia, a former tobacco trading post and George Washington's hometown, founded in 1749. Visitors can shop along the cobblestone streets, step into a historical museum, or try on replicas of Washington's wooden teeth.A famous pair of giant pandas reside at the National Zoo in the tree-lined Woodley Park neighborhood of DC, about 15 miles from the resort. Mei Xiang and Tian Tian, two of the United States' few captive pandas, amble about and munch on bamboo in their 12,000-square-foot enclosure, which features streams, a water-cooled grotto, and an indoor habitat. The National Zoo houses about 2,000 animals from around the world, including elephants, cheetahs, and gorillas.Located just north of the National Mall in downtown DC, the Newseum chronicles the modern history of journalism, with artifacts that run the gamut from the Unabomber's cabin to an exhibit of eight 12-foot-high concrete slabs of the Berlin Wall. One gallery is dedicated solely to Pulitzer Prize–winning photographs, and another to the media coverage of 9/11.
Pin the Tail on the Donkey. Duck, Duck, Goose. Musical Chairs. These traditional games barely hold a candle to the party activities enabled by Kingdom Inflatables. The festivity emporium equips gatherings with enormous, multicolored bounce houses, some with cartoon themes and slides. Bouncers can perfect their craft watching kernels spring to life in the rentable popcorn machine, or cool down with frozen treats or summertime snowball fights from Kingdom Inflatables' snow-cone cart.
With more than two decades working in education and youth development, Shelvee Casey knows what she's doing. Harnessing her extensive background, the founder and director of Youth Legacy, Inc. dedicates herself to helping underserved young people through positive reinforcement, hands-on tutoring sessions, and summer programs that build job skills and confidence.