If you are visiting Washington D.C., take time to visit the hidden gem of Glen Echo Park, which lies just a few miles northwest of the city. The park began its life as a learning center in 1891, and was turned into an amusement park in the early 1900’s. It closed in 1968, and was purchased by the National Park Service in 1971. Through the work of the NPS and local non-profit arts organizations, Glen Echo has been turned into a unique art community. It offers numerous classes in the visual and performance art, artist studios, children’s theater, summer concerts and exhibits, all housed in the wonderful Art Deco amusement park buildings. The beauty of the architecture mixed with the vibrant art scene makes for a heady experience. Photo by Rachael Holliday.