Childrens' Birthday Parties maryland Parenting Party Ideas

Birthday Party Place Ideas for Prince George’s County, Maryland

Planning your child’s birthday party can be a fun and exciting experience! Prince George’s County in Maryland offers many options to ensure your little one’s special day is memorable and enjoyable. With various venues catering to different age groups, there is something for everyone. We have compiled a list of 18+ fantastic party ideas to help you find the perfect location for your child’s celebration. Be sure to check around and compare options to find the best fit for your family. Don’t forget to add some unique party favors from to make the event even more special!

  1. Pump It Up A fun-filled indoor inflatable party venue with private party rooms.
    Age Range: 3-12
    Location: Bowie
    Party Favor: [Hoppy Inflatable Bounce Balls]
  2. My Gym An interactive fitness center with structured games and activities.
    Age Range: 1-10
    Location: Gambrills
    Party Favor: [LED Light Up YoYo]
  3. College Park Aviation Museum A museum dedicated to the history of aviation with birthday party packages.
    Age Range: 4-12
    Location: College Park
    Party Favor: [Foam Glider Airplanes]
  4. Artworks Studio A creative space offering art-themed birthday parties.
    Age Range: 4-12
    Location: Hyattsville
    Party Favor: [Mini Canvases and Easels]
  5. Greenbelt Recreation Department Offers various party options at the Greenbelt Community Center.
    Age Range: 3-12
    Location: Greenbelt
    Party Favor: [Foldable flying discs]
  6. Imagination Stage A theater that offers birthday parties with drama, dance, and music activities.
    Age Range: 3-12
    Location: Bethesda
    Party Favor: [Theater Masks – You may want to provide decorating paints, etc.]
  7. Six Flags America A thrilling amusement park with party packages.
    Age Range: 5-14
    Location: Bowie
    Party Favor: [Spy Pens]
  8. Skate Zone An indoor roller-skating rink with party packages.
    Age Range: 4-14
    Location: Crofton
    Party Favor: [Roller Skate Keychains]
  9. The Little Gym A gymnastics facility offering fun and engaging birthday parties.
    Age Range: 1-12
    Location: Bowie
    Party Favor: [Gymnastics Stickers]
  10. The Magic Putt An indoor mini-golf venue with a magical twist.
    Age Range: 5-12
    Location: Hyattsville
    Party Favor: [Multi-color Pens]
  11. The Playseum An interactive and imaginative play space. Age
    Range: 1-10
    Location: Annapolis
    Party Favor: [Puzzle Cubes]
  12. Watkins Regional Park A beautiful park with playgrounds, a train, and a carousel.
    Age Range: 1-10
    Location: Upper Marlboro
    Party Favor: [Train Whistles]
  13. M-NCPPC Montpelier Arts Center Offers arts and crafts-themed birthday parties.
    Age Range: 4-12
    Location: Laurel
    Party Favor: [Make Your Own Bouncy Balls]
  14. Bowie Baysox Baseball Club A minor league baseball team offering birthday party packages during games.
    Age Range: 4-12
    Location: Bowie
    Party Favor: [Baseball Stress Balls]
  15. Glenn Dale Splash Park A water-themed park with party packages during the summer months.
    Age Range: 4-12
    Location: Glenn Dale
    Party Favor: [Beach balls]
  16. Diven’s Den An indoor play area with various activities and party packages.
    Age Range: 1-12
    Location: Laurel
    Party Favor: [Magnetic Pen Boards]
  17. Laugh Out Loud Stations
    A family entertainment center with games, rides, and inflatables.
    Age Range: 3-12
    Location: Greenbelt
    Party Favor: Mini Emoji Plush Keychains
  18. National Wildlife Visitor Center An educational wildlife center with interactive exhibits and birthday party options.
    Age Range: 4-10
    Location: Laurel
    Party Favor: [Sunglasses]

[See more party ideas in nearby Anne Arundel County, Howard County, and Montgomery County and other party favor ideas]

Conclusion: We hope this list of birthday party venues in Prince George’s County, Maryland, along with some unique party favor suggestions, helps you find the perfect location for your child’s special day. Remember to explore and compare different options to ensure you select the best venue that meets your needs and budget. Happy planning, and may your child’s birthday be filled with laughter, fun, and unforgettable memories!

Education maryland

Exciting Day Trip Ideas and Special Programs for Homeschoolers in Howard County, Maryland

Are you a homeschooling family in Howard County, Maryland, looking for engaging and educational day trips? Look no further! We’ve compiled a list of some fantastic opportunities and programs that cater to homeschoolers. From science centers to nature reserves, there’s something for every interest and age group.

Maryland Science Center
Located in Baltimore, the Maryland Science Center offers monthly homeschool programs, providing hands-on science experiences for all ages. Topics range from physics to biology, ensuring an exciting, interactive learning experience. Don’t forget to explore their planetarium, observatory, and IMAX theater!

Maryland Hall
Maryland Hall in Annapolis is a cultural hub offering various arts-based programs for homeschoolers. From pottery and painting to dance and theater, your children can explore their creativity while learning about different art forms.

Crypto Museum
The Crypto Museum in Fort Meade is a unique destination for homeschoolers interested in cryptography and codebreaking. The museum showcases the history of American cryptology and offers interactive exhibits to engage kids in critical thinking and problem-solving.

Pedal Power
Pedal Power in Annapolis is a bicycling program for kids of all ages. With a focus on safety and skill-building, homeschoolers can participate in guided rides, bike camps, and customized lessons to become confident cyclists while exploring beautiful Maryland outdoors.

Jug Bay
Jug Bay Wetlands Sanctuary in Lothian is an excellent destination for homeschoolers to learn about the local ecosystem. The sanctuary offers guided tours, nature workshops, and citizen science programs that teach about wetland ecology, conservation, and wildlife.

John Fishback
John Fishback Nature Programs in Silver Spring offer environmental education programs and workshops for homeschoolers. Your children can learn about nature through hands-on activities like animal tracking, birdwatching, and plant identification.

Irvine Nature Center in Owings Mills provides various homeschool programs focused on environmental education. From nature hikes to wildlife encounters, children can explore the great outdoors while learning about the natural world.

Accokeek Foundation in Accokeek is home to Piscataway Park, where homeschoolers can participate in various programs that teach about the area’s cultural and natural history. Programs include farming, gardening, and historical reenactments, offering a well-rounded educational experience.

Seneca Schoolhouse
The Seneca Schoolhouse Museum in Poolesville provides a glimpse into the life of a 19th-century one-room schoolhouse. Homeschoolers can participate in interactive programs that explore the history of education and what life was like for students and teachers in the past.

Robinson Nature Center
Robinson Nature Center in Columbia offers homeschool programs that cover various environmental topics. From animal adaptations to stream studies, children will learn about the interconnectedness of the natural world through hands-on activities and exploration.

Freetown Farm
Freetown Farm in Columbia is a unique destination for homeschoolers to learn about sustainable agriculture, environmental stewardship, and community building. They offer educational programs and volunteer opportunities for children and families to experience the joys of farming, gardening, and healthy living.

Patapsco Valley State Park

Patapsco Valley State Park, extending along 32 miles of the Patapsco River, offers a variety of recreational activities and educational opportunities for homeschoolers. The park’s trails, picnic areas, and playgrounds provide an excellent setting for nature exploration, and the park’s history and ecology can be studied through ranger-led programs.

B&O Railroad Museum

The B&O Railroad Museum in Baltimore is a must-visit for homeschoolers interested in transportation and American history. With a vast collection of historic railroad equipment, the museum offers educational programs and interactive exhibits to engage children in the evolution of rail transportation.

Port Discovery Children’s Museum

Located in Baltimore, Port Discovery Children’s Museum is an interactive museum that offers a variety of exhibits and programs for children of all ages. With a focus on learning through play, homeschoolers can explore art, science, and imaginative play in a fun and engaging environment.

Howard County Conservancy

The Howard County Conservancy in Woodstock offers environmental education programs, guided nature walks, and workshops for homeschoolers. Children can learn about local wildlife, habitats, and conservation while exploring the scenic trails and natural areas.

Baltimore Museum of Industry

The Baltimore Museum of Industry is a fantastic destination for homeschoolers interested in American manufacturing and commerce history. The museum offers interactive exhibits, workshops, and educational programs that cover various industries, from garment production to canning.

Annapolis Maritime Museum

Located in Annapolis, the Annapolis Maritime Museum offers homeschoolers the chance to learn about the maritime history of the Chesapeake Bay. Programs include boat-building workshops, ecology lessons, and interactive exhibits that explore the region’s rich heritage.

Assateague Island National Seashore

Assateague Island National Seashore, located on Maryland’s Eastern Shore, is a great destination for homeschoolers to explore the diverse coastal ecosystem. Enjoy a day at the beach, observe the wild ponies, and participate in ranger-led programs that teach about the island’s natural and cultural history.

National Aquarium

The National Aquarium in Baltimore offers a world-class aquatic experience. Homeschoolers can explore the diverse marine life, attend daily shows and presentations, and participate in educational workshops that teach about marine science and conservation.

Chesapeake Bay Maritime Museum

Located in St. Michaels, the Chesapeake Bay Maritime Museum offers a unique opportunity for homeschoolers to learn about the maritime heritage of the Chesapeake Bay. Exhibits include historic boats, a working shipyard, and a lighthouse, providing an immersive experience in maritime history.

The Walters Art Museum

The Walters Art Museum in Baltimore offers a comprehensive collection of art spanning from ancient times to the 19th century. With free admission, homeschoolers can explore the museum’s galleries, participate in educational programs, and attend family-friendly events.

Brookside Gardens

Brookside Gardens in Wheaton is a beautiful 50-acre public garden that offers a serene setting for homeschoolers to learn about plants, horticulture, and ecology. Enjoy a leisurely stroll through the various themed gardens, participate in educational programs, and explore the seasonal exhibits.

Antietam National Battlefield

Located in Sharpsburg, Antietam National Battlefield offers homeschoolers an opportunity to learn about the Civil War and its impact on American history. Explore the battlefield, attend ranger-led programs, and visit the nearby Pry House Field Hospital Museum for a comprehensive educational experience.

Maryland Zoo in Baltimore

The Maryland Zoo in Baltimore provides a fun and educational day trip for homeschoolers. With a focus on conservation and education, the zoo offers a variety of exhibits featuring animals from around the world, as well as educational programs and interactive experiences.

Fort McHenry National Monument

Fort McHenry in Baltimore is an important historical site, known for its role in the War of 1812 and as the inspiration for the national anthem. Homeschoolers can explore the fort, participate in ranger-led programs, and learn about the history of the United States through interactive exhibits.

Harriet Tubman Underground Railroad National Historical Park

Located on the Eastern Shore, the Harriet Tubman Underground Railroad National Historical Park offers a unique opportunity for homeschoolers to learn about the life and legacy of Harriet Tubman. Visit the visitor center, explore the scenic landscape, and participate in educational programs highlighting Tubman’s journey and the Underground Railroad.

Adventure Park USA

Adventure Park USA in Monrovia is a family-friendly amusement park that offers a variety of attractions, including go-karts, mini-golf, roller coasters, and arcade games. While not strictly educational, the park provides a fun day trip option for homeschooling families seeking a break from academic activities.

In conclusion, Howard County, Maryland, and its surrounding areas offer many exciting and educational day trip ideas for homeschoolers. By participating in these special programs, children can gain invaluable hands-on experiences while exploring the natural world, science, history, and the arts. So, gather your homeschooling family and embark on a journey of discovery and learning at these beautiful destinations.

Featured kids activities maryland Recommendations

List of Fun Activities For Kids To Do Around Maryland

what to do in maryland for fun

Looking for worthwhile things to do with your kids in the Baltimore/DC Area?  I am too.  Here is a list of 27+ fun activity suggestions that I have compiled from experience with my own children.  Please feel free to add to this list by leaving a comment below.

1) Children’s museums: Visit the  National Children’s Museum in National Harbor or in Baltimore called Port Discovery.  Kids love both places.

Another great place to take kids and teens is the Natural History Museum in Washington D.C.  There are some great exhibits including mummies, gems and minerals, loads of animal and plant exhibits and an insect zoo where you can watch them feed a tarantula, see a live butterfly exhibit and more.  One of the greatest things in the museum is also the best kept secret–Q?rius is the name of a special kids science zone in the basement of the museum.

They have lots of high quality microscopes and tons of specimens and activities.  I highly recommend this for all kids but especially kids and teens interested in basic science. Rumor has it that they will soon be getting a scanning electron microscope!  See  the Natural History Museum’s website for information. Your children may also love the children’s activity center at the American Indian Museum.

Also, the Smithsonian maintains a website with a calendar of things to do for kids at all of its museums.  Check it out here.

2) In the spring, summer and fall months you can go to Brookside Gardens and see a great butterfly exhibit called Wings of Fancy (goes from Spring until October)

3) The National Gallery of Art has free hour long story time/Looking at art classes for kids on Sundays.  Get there before 11 (when the museum opens to get into the first class–usually there’s great parking spots open right near the museum).

4) In May – November, there are two great picking farms we like to go to–Larriland Farm in Lisbon, MD, Weber’s Farm in Parkville, and Butler’s Orchard in Germantown.  We especially like Larriland, they grow all kinds of things you can pick and the kids really love it.  Larriland uses a farming method called integrated pest management which significantly reduces pesticide use.

This is not the cheapest way to get your produce in the summer and fall, but it’s definitely one of the most fun. (If you are looking for cheap ways to get produce, see my blog post 6 cheap places to get produce in Maryland.)

5) Baltimore Harbor is always a fun place to go.  The paddle boats are a little expensive, but our girls really love riding on them.  Two of the most popular museums in the area are the National Aquarium and the Maryland Science Center.

Hard Bargain - Visit farms in Maryland

6) Visit Hard Bargain Farm.  For some readers it might be  a little bit far, but they have some great programs for kids there.

7) Visit the Patuxent National Wildlife Refuge in Beltsville.  Ride the tram through the forest….

8) For a quick day-trip to the beach visit North Beach, Maryland or Sandy Point State Park.

9) Patapsco State Park – Visit one of several areas in the park including the “tire park” which is near Catonsville in the Hilton area of the park.  Some great hiking and nice scenery.

10) Is it hot outside? Follow the Maryland ice cream trail.

11) Go watch hobbyists launch model rockets at NASA Goddard. Held one Sunday per month–a tradition since 1976. You will also have a great, nerdy time at the Goddard Sunday Experiment.

12) Go to Imagination Stage and see a play for kids.  This ten year old theater company produces high quality shows and presents them in a modern venue.

13) Take a trip to Great Falls and walk along the C & O canal tow path.  See the amazing falls at the overlook. Hike on the billy goat trails and visit the museum.  Take a ride on a canal barge.

14) Visit Clarks Elioak Farm in Ellicott City.  Learn about farming and see artifacts from the Enchanted Forest.  Check the website for hours.

15) Terrapin Adventures in Savage, MD or Adventure Park in Sandy Spring for some fun in the trees including zip lines and climbing.

16) The Maryland Renaissance Festival – On weekends and holidays from late August to Mid October, this is a great place to have some fun.  If you’ve never been to a Ren Faire before, expect lots of interesting spectacles — low-tech shows (Jousting, magic) and interesting food and drink.

17) The National Zoo or The Maryland Zoo in Baltimore.  The National Zoo is free, there is an admission charge for the Baltimore Zoo (at this writing $17.50 for adults, $12.50 for children).  Both zoos are an excellent experience for all ages.

things to do in Annapolis MD

18) Visit historic Annapolis – This colonial capitol town is charming and storied.  Visit the shops, museums and restaurants by the water, take a boat ride, a walking tour of the Naval Academy and more.  There are quite a few things to do and see. If you get a chance, have a look at the Hammond Harwood, William Paca House and Charles Carroll house historic sites.

19) When you take a trip to Annapolis and go kayaking, paddle  or canoeing at Quiet Waters Park.  They even offer stand-up paddle boarding–give it a try! You may also want to try Capital SUP – You can do stand-up paddle boarding right in the Annapolis Harbor in Eastport.

20) Transportation Museums – In Baltimore, visit the B&O Railroad museum – Kids love trains.  This is a chance to explore the history of the railroads and see old steam engines in person. To continue the rail theme, visit the streetcar museum.

Also in Baltimore at the inner harbor are some historic ships  including the USS Constellation and sometimes a submarine for you to get on board and have a look at. In College Park, there is an aviation museum. Another great museum is the Maryland Fire Museum in Lutherville. They have an amazing collection of old fire apparatus and plenty of fun things for kids.

21) For a bit of history, visit Montpelier Mansion in Laurel, Maryland.  This Georgian mansion is very interesting especially if you are interested in local history and architecture.

22) Also in Laurel, is the Dinosaur Park–an interesting place to learn about Maryland’s prehistoric history.  You can visit any day, but for the best experience, you want to go on Saturday’s when they have open houses (check the schedule!).  It isn’t far from the Montpelier Mansion so you can plan to visit both on the same day.

22.5) If you’re in the mood for archaeology and looking for fossils, here are two more great activities: Have a go at the National Geographic Museum in Washington DC.  Great stuff! Also, there are several locations near Calvert Cliffs Nuclear Power Plant that have fossils that can be found. My best suggestion here is to visit Flag Pond beach–you may find sharks, whales and alligator teeth and shells that are millions of years old.

23) Hike at Brighton Dam – Brighton Dam is a reservoir used as a water supply for homes around Montgomery County. They have walking trails and you can do some fishing there. Also, there is a spectacular azalea garden with 22,000 azalea bushes. Best viewed around early May.

24) The Fire Museum – The Fire Museum is lots of fun for kids of all ages. Located in Lutherville, this museum has some great exhibits. It’s also a great place to have a birthday party!

25) Do your kids like climbing? There is a super-cool indoor climbing place for kids in Laurel, MD. Climbzone is unusual because it doesn’t have your typical climbing walls. Kids can climb all sorts of nets, book cases, a Mount Rushmore replica and more. Highly recommended.

26) The American Visionary Art Museum is a little different. Located in Federal Hill in Baltimore City, this place has some great stuff for kids to enjoy. Look for their annual activities such as their whimsical moving sculpture parade and their sock puppet activity.

27) Crystal Grottoes Caverns – Discovered in 1920, the Crystal Grottoes Cavern is a great place to take kids. There are plenty of interesting and amazing formations sure to fill kids of all ages with wonder.

For a weekly roundup of special events for kids in Maryland, Virginia and DC visit Kidfriendly DC.  In the Baltimore area, we have Cool Progeny, which also is great for finding things to do.

anne arundel county estate maryland Recommendations will

Do You Need A Lawyer To Probate and Settle Estates in Anne Arundel County Maryland?

wills in Anne Arundel County Maryland

Note: This post isn’t meant to be take the place of legal advice–it just describes my experience.

My mom recently passed away in Anne Arundel County, Maryland and I was made the executor of the will. (She did not have a trust) She had used a lawyer in Annapolis to draw up the will and he kept it for her in his safe.  I went to see him after she died and after speaking to us, he offered to help us do the paperwork and settle the estate for the handsome sum of $5000 plus fees from various services and the courts.  Among the services he said we’d need, after making the process seem very complicated, were two appraisals–one for her house and one for all of her personal property.  This alone probably would have cost between $500-700.

Yes You Can Handle the Estate Without a Lawyer

After looking at the Registry of Wills website for Anne Arundel County, I thought it seemed pretty daunting.  There are so many ins and outs–so many questions to answer.  But as it turns out, if you go there in person, the clerks are unbelievably helpful.  So helpful that they pretty much fill out many of the forms for you and guide you in exactly what you are going to need to do.  So if the estate you are dealing with isn’t very complicated (they’re all a little bit complicated) you can DEFINITELY take care of doing this yourself and save thousands of dollars.

I spent about 45 minutes with the clerk at the Orphan’s Court in Annapolis on Church Circle.  Then a few more minutes with one of the auditors at the desk next door who gave me some guidance in some of the accounting we’d have to do.

The clerk I met with looked up the value of my mom’s home from the tax records (so I didn’t need a real estate appraiser to come out) and she got the Kelly Blue Book value of my mom’s car for me and printed that out as well.  I asked her about whether we needed to have all of my mom’s personal effects appraised by a professional appraiser, and she said that it wasn’t necessary as long as the furniture she had was not antique.  Basically we only need to account for valuables–the point of which being for two purposes, but most importantly so that the state can value the entire estate.

The reason for this accounting is that if it turns out the estate is worth more than $1,000,000 then some extreme taxes start to kick in.  So if it looks like the estate is worth that kind of money, you’ll need to dig deeper to work out what to do.

Things are also much simpler if the person had less than $50,000.  What you need to know is that there are two different ways to administer a regular estate.  Normally you would need to do everything under court supervision, in a six month long process.  But if the heirs all agree, and sign a paper stating such, there is a streamlined way to administer the estate that is much less complicated/time consuming.

The court mainly wants to make sure that everyone who is supposed to inherit money gets it, and that before that happens anyone who is owed money by the person who died gets what’s due.

The person who’s administering the will is going to need to get a surety bond–a form of insurance that basically protects the heirs against the executor walking off with all of the money. This is going to cost about $150. You’ll be glad to know that the Orphans Court will help you get signed up for that insurance.

The most difficult part of the process is the final form–this is where you, the executor, will account for the money that is being handled. They will need to account for all of the major assets and money the person who passed away had, then all of the money that was spent since they passed away including funeral expenses, electric, water, condo fee bills, etc, and other payments that may have been made along the way using the estate’s money and finally account for the distribution of the remaining assets to the heirs as described in the will.

The bottom line here, is that the final form won’t be accepted until the numbers all align. In other words, you have to be able to show how much money and assets there were from the moment the person passed away until the moment the remaining money is disbursed to the heirs. The money that remains can’t be given to the heirs until the final statement is accepted and a letter is received saying the money can be distributed.

In my case, I didn’t have the numbers quite right, and I had to redo it several times before it was finally accepted. The good thing was that the auditor at the court was helpful and patient while I got it right.

By the way, the same lawyer mentioned above said they would be happy to help me write a simple will starting at $900.  The will that was written for my mom was clearly just a copy and paste job with a few names changed and three lines leaving some specific items to specific people. It is clearly possible to do a will yourself (there is software and websites available to help you with this).  You just need to make sure it is properly witnessed.  You can then store it at the courthouse / Register of Wills for $5.

Here is a helpful website for getting your own documents in order: