You might think of indoor fun on rainy days or those chilly winter days that seem so far away. But a few hours in air conditioning is welcome this time of year. You probably know that the Smithsonian museums are a free place to escape the heat. But some local movie theaters, bowling alleys and skating rinks are offering fun for you and a break for Mom and Dad, at a price of $5 or less.
Summer Movie Express at 10 area Regal Cinemas offers $1 tickets Tuesdays and Wednesdays through August 22. Shows, which are rated G or PG, begin at 10 a.m. This week, Majestic Stadium 20 in Silver Spring will screen the animated “ Rio ” on Tuesday (that’s today, so get moving!) and “ Spy Kids: All the Time in the World” on Wednesday. At Fairfax Towne Center 10, “ Kung Fu Panda 2 ” and “ Rango ” are playing. Moviegoers in Bowie can see “Chimpanzee” and “ Hoodwinked Too .”
Arlington Cinema ’N’ Drafthouse has family-friendly $1 movies every Monday. The shows, which start at 4:30 p.m., often fill up, so it’s best to arrive by the time doors open at 4. Recent movies have included “Chimpanzee” and “ Dr. Seuss’ The Lorax .”
●Regal Summer Movie Express: www.regmovies.com/summermovieexpress.
●Arlington Cinema ’N’ Drafthouse:
2903 Columbia Pike, Arlington. 703-486-2345. www.arlingtondrafthouse.com
If you’re looking for a bit more activity while staying cool, have your parents sign you up for AMF’s free Summer Unplugged bowling program. Kids age 15 and younger can bowl two free games per day until September 3. Shoe rental is not included and usually costs about $5. Nearby bowling alleys include those in Temple Hills, College Park, Annandale and Centreville. AMF e-mails coupons to parents, and participants must bring the coupons to the bowling alley.
Bowl America gives students a free game for each A or B on their end-of-the-year report card. Rental shoes are $4.25. Bring the report card into a local Bowl America by September 3. Area locations include Gaithersburg, Falls Church and Woodbridge.
●AMF Summer Unplugged: www.freebowling.amf.com.
●Bowl America: www.bowl-america.com.
For another stay-cool activity, take a spin at an area roller rink. If you are 12 or younger and your parents sign you up for the Kids Skate Free program, you can skate — you guessed it — free (plus $3 for skate rental). Participating local rinks are in Lanham, Crofton and Manassas. Hours for the free sessions vary, and you must bring coupons, which are e-mailed weekly.
If you’re looking for a wintry experience, Summer Skates at Cabin John Ice Rink and Wheaton Ice Arena offer $5 admission including skate rental. Wheaton offers the discount at all public skates through August 26. At Cabin John, it’s Monday through Friday from 4:30 to 6:30 p.m. through August 26. Tucker Road Ice Rink in Fort Washington offers $4 sessions (for Prince George’s and Montgomery county residents), including skate rental on Fridays from noon to 2 p.m.
●Kids Skate Free: www.kidsskatefree.com.
●Cabin John Ice Rink: 10610 Westlake Drive, Rockville. 301-765-8620. www.montgomeryparks.org/enterprise/ ice/cabin_john.
●Wheaton Ice Arena: 11717 Orebaugh Avenue, Wheaton. 301-905-3000. www.montgomeryparks.org/enterprise/ ice/wheaton.
●Tucker Road Ice Rink:
1770 Tucker Road, Fort Washington. 301-265-1525
— Christina Barron