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Smithsonian Associates - Entertaining, Informative, Eclectic, Insightful

This week's Wednesday offerings include tips on putting down roots and embarking on adventures across (and beneath) the world, as well as a presidential descendant's observations on the roots of our democracy.

It's all designed to make sure you continue to enjoy what you've come to value from Smithsonian Associates: programs and experiences that are entertaining, informative, eclectic, and insightful.

Home Harvest

Have you always wanted to cultivate a home garden but were unsure about digging into the project? Smithsonian Gardens' Victory Garden 2020, inspired by the home-front vegetable plots of World War II, offers the perfect model. Horticulturist Erin Clark, a member of the team that created the demonstration garden on the east side of the American History Museum, provides a comprehensive guide on when and what to plant at home, tailored to the Washington area's growing seasons. You can also fertilize your ideas with some practical gardening advice from National Public Radio.

Explore the Victory Garden

Start Your Own Garden

Staff C-SPAN Pick: Kermit Roosevelt

Have we gotten the principles of the Declaration of Independence and Constitution all wrong? In a recent Smithsonian Associates program, Kermit Roosevelt, constitutional law professor at the University of Pennsylvania's law school, and great-great-grandson of Theodore Roosevelt, challenged the conventional view that these hallowed documents established our core values and tell us who we are. Senior Program Coordinator Ruth Robbins, who organized the March 3 event, recommends the C-SPAN broadcast of Roosevelt's appearance in which he explores the idea that rather than a steady realization of principles established during the nation's founding, the story of America is one of repeated reinvention.

Watch the Program

Hidden Worlds of the National Parks

Caves and caverns in our region are regular destinations for Smithsonian Associates study tours participants. Though burrowing is an indoor sport at the moment, there are still underground adventures to experience. A stunning virtual tour of Carlsbad Caverns is one of several ranger-led excursions into national parks, focusing on distinctive elements of each location that most visitors might never see. Interactive features make the tours even more engaging.

Tour the Caverns

A Festival of Festivals

The 2020 Smithsonian Folklife Festival is now a digital event-and this version of the iconic summer celebration of world cultures has a head start. The first of this year's Story Circles, conversations about Ramadan and connection in the time of COVID-19 and Brazilian music in Washington, D.C., are available for viewing on the festival's blog. It's part of an extensive collection of videos, photos, audio tracks, and educational resources that span over five decades of Smithsonian Folklife Festival programs, covering areas from art and design to foodways, performances to language. Use it to curate your own festival-and you won't need to pack sunscreen and water bottles to enjoy it.

Join the Festival

Dive Into the Unknown

The budding marine biologists and gaming fans among your at-home students will love discovering The Secrets of the Sea. It's a new interactive Smithsonian Learning Lab experience that lets young people navigate through a 3D coral reef ecosystem and meet biologist Nancy Knowlton of the Natural History Museum as they gain a better understanding of the impact of humans on the oceans. Videos, games, and hands-on activities are part of the expedition.

Discover Secrets of the Sea


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