Family-Friendly Fairs and Festivals
Thrill your kids and make lifetime memories at these amazing Maryland events.
Re-enact the American Revolution, dress up as a pirate, or spend Halloween with wild animals. For kid-friendly entertainment, here are a few ideas throughout Maryland to get you started planning an awesome family adventure. And for even more fabulous family-focused events, check out our events calendar.
Exercise your imagination at the pirate-themed Fell’s Point Privateer Festival in July. Costumes are encouraged! Interactive exhibits, re-enactments, tours and crafts make this a great way to learn how locals helped fight British troops during the War of 1812.
A perennially popular escape is the Renaissance Festival, which brings medieval merriment to Crownsville, near Annapolis, from late August to mid-October. Wander through a forest setting, listen to merry minstrels, barter with a merchant, meet a king and laugh out loud at a comedy show.
Go fly a kite! No, really, the Maryland International Kite Expo is sheer springtime fun. Each April, watch colorful giant kites fly high for both applause and prizes. Kids can even learn how to make their own kite.
In June, family activities figure prominently at the Columbia Festival of the Arts. The two-week, top-notch smorgasbord of dance, music and visual arts for kids of all ages showcases the best talent in Howard County in addition to international artists.
On the Eastern Shore, costumed Colonials reenact the dumping of British tea into the Chester River during the three-day Chestertown Tea Party Festival each May. Children will love making Colonial crafts, learning to clog to music by a jug band and listening to lively storytellers.
Animal lovers will delight in ZooBOOO! During this Halloween tradition at The Maryland Zoo in Baltimore, kids can collect candy at trick-or-treat stations throughout the zoo. Don’t miss the ever-popular elephant pumpkin smash!
Animals are in the spotlight each May at the Maryland State Fair in Timonium. Wander through barns to look at livestock and other farm animals. Watch thoroughbreds race, see a newborn piglet and pick up some skills at the U-Learn Farm.
Step right up and find out absolutely everything you never knew about sheep at the Maryland Sheep & Wool Festival in May in West Friendship. You’ll see more than 800 sheep, watch them get shorn, and see how their wool gets transformed into fiber arts and warm, comfy garments.
Get your fill of autumn’s red, yellow and green bounty at the Darlington Apple Festival in Darlington. It’s all about the double-crust and crumb-top pies at this October staple. Go on a pony ride or a hay ride, listen to bands and face tough competition in the cornhole contest.
Delight in the hayrides, apple cider and pumpkins galore in September and October at Butler’s Orchard Pumpkin Festival in Germantown. Kids will love jumping in the hayloft, winding through the corn maze and playing on pedal tractors.
Save the date for the first Saturday in October. That’s when kids are the focus at Kinderfest at Watkins Regional Park in Upper Marlboro. They’ll love the sweet treats, midway amusements and Main Stage entertainers.
Formerly a community turkey dinner, the Autumn Glory Festival blossomed into a four-day festival in Oakland. You’ll find tons of family fun, including crafts, a car show, farmers market, and fiddle, banjo and mandolin championships.
The town of Oakland hosts the popular Winter Fest over Presidents Day weekend in February. It’s chock-full of musical performances and activities for kids. Everyone will marvel at illuminated and intricately carved ice sculptures. Try the ice slides and horse-drawn carriage rides!
In addition to the traditional bratwurst, German music and beer, Frederick’s Oktoberfest features plenty of activities for kids that are just plain fun—like decorating pumpkins and making scarecrows. As a bonus, you can learn a bit about German heritage at this traditional festival each fall.