The holidays offer many look-but-don’t-touch experiences. But you might be looking for some hands-on holiday fun. We’ve got you covered with several activities in the Washington-Baltimore area. Decorate cookies and build a gingerbread house. Create a new ornament for the Christmas tree. Make a card for a friend or relative. These events are for the entire family, so keep an eye on your little brother. He just might turn your gingerbread house into his dessert.

Mary McCallum and her daughter Nyiah Landfair build a gingerbread house at Gaylord National Resort. (Photo by Dan Ham/Gaylord National Resort)
Gingerbread decorating corner

National Harbor, Maryland

Use your creative culinary skills by selecting a gingerbread kit and make a masterpiece at Gaylord National Resort and Convention Center.

Where: Gaylord National Resort, 201 Waterfront Street, National Harbor, Maryland.

When: Daily until January 1. Monday-Thursday at 1 p.m. Friday-Sunday
at 10 a.m.

How much: Kits are $30 to $40. They can be purchased at the box office upon arrival or reserved online at

More information: A parent can visit or call

Annual holiday card workshop


The card workshop at the National Postal Museum. (Photo from the National Postal Museum)

Choose from a large spread of papers, 3-D patterns, postage stamps and stickers to create a holiday card at the National Postal Museum. The cards can be mailed from the museum’s mailbox.

Where: National Postal Museum,
2 Massachusetts Avenue in Northeast Washington.

When: Saturday-Sunday, 10 a.m. to 4 p.m.

How much: Free.

More information: Visit or call 202-633-5555.

Cookie decorating at Mount Vernon

Mount Vernon, Virginia

Stations will be set up in George Washington’s greenhouse to decorate your own box of holiday cookies provided by the staff. Choose from a variety of icing and other toppings.

Where: 3200 Mount Vernon Memorial Highway, Mount Vernon, Virginia.

When: December 15, 10 a.m. and 1 p.m.

How much: $5 per person in addition to general admission. Adults $18, ages 6 to 11 $11, age 5 and younger free (online prices). Event tickets can be purchased separately.

More information: Visit or call 703-780-2000.

Mount Vernon hosts cookie decorating. (Photo by Buddy Secor)

Morning light floods the Boeing Milestones of Flight Hall at the National Air and Space Museum in 2016. (Photo by Eric Long)
Holiday Family Day


Take part in a scavenger hunt to find the hidden Christmas tree at the National Air and Space Museum. Make holiday ornaments with clothespins to resemble biplanes. A free planetarium show will highlight winter constellations.

Where: National Air and Space Museum, Independence Avenue at Sixth Street in Southwest Washington.

When: December 8, 10 a.m. to 3 p.m.

How much: Free.

More information: Visit or call 202-633-2214.

Families can build musical ornaments at the B & O Railroad Museum. (Photo from the B & O Railroad Museum)
B & O's Magical Holiday Express


At Baltimore’s B & O Railroad Museum, learn how to make snow out of polymers that won’t melt inside! The museum will be hosting other craftmaking sessions, such as musical ornaments.

Where: B & O Railroad Museum, 901 West Pratt Street, Baltimore, Maryland.

When: For the musical ornament craft, December 15-16. For snow polymers, December 26-31. Hours are Monday- Saturday 10 a.m. to 4 p.m.; Sundays 11 a.m. to 4 p.m.

How much: Adults $20, ages 2 to 12 $12. Tickets can be purchased at the station.

More information: Visit or call 410-752-2490.