Category Archives: Events and Things to Do

Crafts, hikes and more events coming up this weekend

Doesn’t it sound like a fun weekend? And fun gets started tonight! Events are free, unless otherwise indicated. Enjoy!

Photo by Irina Iriser on Pexels.com

Thursday, November 14

  • NGA Nights: Theme: 90s Throwback. 6 p.m. – 8 p.m. National Gallery of Art. Washington, DC
  • Holiday Wreath Making (18 and up). 6 p.m. – 8 p.m. Reston Community Center. $45

Saturday, November 16.

  • Make Break DIY Christmas Wreath (adults). 1 p.m. – 3 p.m. Michael’s Pan Am Shopping Center, Fairfax. Call store for availability. Cost of supplies.
  • Cooking Your Thanksgiving Turkey. 2 p.m. – 3 p.m. Oakton Public Library, Oakton.
  • Night Hike and S’mores Campfire. 7 p.m. –  8 p.m. Lake Fairfax, Reston. $7

Sunday, November 17

  • Paint Christmas Ornaments (family program). 11 a.m. – 12 noon. Tysons-Pimmit Public Library.
  • A Bountiful Harvest program. 1 p.m. – 3 p.m. Sully Historic Site, Chantilly.
  • Burke Lake Sunset Cruise. 4:30 p.m. – 5:30 p.m. Burke Lake Park. $7.

Christmas Tree Lightings in November and December

Do you light up like a Christmas tree when they light up Christmas trees? Here’s an ahhh-some (and printable!) list made just for you.

Some of these tree lightings occur in November so I’m giving you advance notice. Most events include free entertainment, visits from Santa Claus and in some cases, toy collections. Click the links to learn more and plan your fun evening.

Friday, November 15, 6 p.m. Tree lighting at Holiday Light-Up, Fairfax Corner, Fairfax. Plus: horse carriage rides!

Friday, November 15, 6 p.m. Tree Lighting on the Plaza with Tommy McFly and musical entertainment. The Plaza, Tysons Corner Center, Vienna.

Saturday, November 23, 6 p.m. Tree Lighting Ceremony in Old Town Alexandria, City Hall on King Street and Market Street.

Friday, November 29, 6 p.m. Tree lighting and Sing-a-long at Fountain Square in Reston Town Center. While you’re there, visit the Hyatt Hotel lobby to see a real gingerbread village.

Monday, December 2, 6 p.m. Tree lighting in the Town of Vienna at The Church Street Holiday Stroll. Santa arrives by firetruck!

Tuesday, December 3, 6 p.m. Norwegian Christmas Tree Lighting and ceremony at Union Station, Washington, DC. Plus: the famous model railroad display on view all December!

Wednesday, December 4, 5 p.m. U.S. Capitol Tree Lighting, West Lawn, U.S. Capitol, Washington, DC. The tree will be lit by House Speaker Nancy Pelosi, and will be illuminated each evening in December until 11 p.m.

Thursday December 5, 5 p.m. The National Christmas Tree will be lit by the First Lady and will remain on view through December at the Ellipse (in back of the White House) in Washington, DC. The National Tree is surrounded by 50+ smaller trees for each U.S. state and territory.

Saturday, December 7, 5:30 p.m. Tree lighting at The Festival of Lights and Carols, Old Town Square, 10415 North Street, Fairfax City. Holiday Festival of Lights and Carols 2 pm. – 7 p.m. with live music, s’mores and hot cider.

 

Do something FUN on Thanksgiving Day

“Be thankful for what you have. You’ll end up having more.” — Oprah Winfrey

How long, really, does it take you to eat Thanksgiving dinner? An hour, tops? That leaves plenty of time left over. Fortunately, there are plenty of fun options for Thanksgiving Day.

Watch the Macy’s Day parade or other parade on TV.

Go walking, jogging or running. Register for the Reston Turkey 5K (a 1K and kids’ race is also available), the Fairfax Turkey Trot or the Alexandria Turkey Trot.

Play Thanksgiving games. This is the best article: it lists 17 really fun-looking Thanksgiving games, including Mad Libs, an Escape Room, pumpkin races, guessing games and more. Some of these would be good for classrooms, too. Check it out!

Soak up some culture. All the Smithsonian Museums, the National Zoo and the U.S. Botanic Gardens are open on Thanksgiving Day. Mount Vernon and Luray Caverns are also open to visitors. Tickets are available for the 7:30 p.m. performance of The Nutcracker by the Atlanta Ballet at the Kennedy Center. The Kennedy Center also presents a free Millenium Stage concert at 6:30 p.m.

Have a laugh. Watch the Thanksgiving episodes of Friends. Listen to old radio show Thanksgiving programs — Jack Benny and Our Miss Brooks are funny ones. You can find them on YouTube.

Read the kids a story. I like The First Thanksgiving by Linda Hayward and One Little, Two Little, Three Little Pilgrims by B.G. Hennessy.

Play Turkey Day Trivia. You can play in teams and take turns drawing questions, or play with just two people. Here is the Word file so  you can download and print it, or customize it with your own questions: Thanksgiving Trivia.

Shop for early Black Friday bargains. Dulles Town Center, Tysons Corner and Fair Oaks will be open for shopping on Thanksgiving Day at 6 p.m.

Go to the movies. Recent releases on Thanksgiving Day will include Past Christmas, Frozen II, A Beautiful Day in the Neighborhood, and Knives Out, a “whodunnit” starring Daniel Craig, Chris Evans, Don Johnson, Jamie Lee Curtis, among others. Be sure to order your tickets in advance (e.g., on Fandango) so you aren’t disappointed.

Take a trip. Williamsburg is a great destination for Thanksgiving. Hotel prices are low, attractions are open (including Colonial Williamsburg and Historic Jamestown) and there are wonderful places to enjoy a Thanksgiving meal, not to mention Christmas Town at Busch Gardens. Richmond is also a close-by option. The Virginia Museum of Fine Arts is open and you can even make reservations to enjoy Thanksgiving dinner at the Amuse restaurant in the museum. Luray Caverns is also open on Thanksgiving Day.

Volunteer. The Reston Community Center needs volunteers on Thanksgiving Day. Other places to volunteer: animal shelters, food banks, etc.

An upcoming weekend of November fun

Make a memory, make a mini tree or make a recipe! There are lots of options for this weekend in Northern Virginia and DC. Events are free, unless otherwise indicated.

Friday, November 8

Saturday, November 9

  • Make Break DIY Mini Christmas Tree decorations (adults). 1 p.m. – 3 p.m. Michael’s Pan Am Shopping Center, Fairfax. Call store for availability. Cost of supplies.
  • Thanksgiving Recipes with Chef Cal. 2 p.m. – 3:30 p.m. Chantilly Regional Library, Chantilly.
  • Fall Foliage Tour Boat Ride. 4 p.m. – 5 p.m. Burke Lake Park. $8

Sunday, November 10

  • Fall Foliage Tour Boat Ride. 4 p.m. – 5 p.m. Burke Lake Park. $8

Happy November! Fun things to do this weekend

What appeals to you? A boat ride to see beautiful fall foliage around the lake? Exploring vegan Thanksgiving options? Attending a Day of the Dad celebration? This weekend has all that, and more. Events are free, unless otherwise indicated.

Saturday, November 2

  • Day of the Dead Celebration. 10 a.m. – 5 p.m. Museum of the American Indian. Washington, DC.
  • Day of the Dead Celebration. 10 a.m. – 2 p.m. Mexican Cultural Institute. Washington, DC
  • Plant-based Thanksgiving Meal Ideas. 1 p.m. – 2 p.m. Tysons-Pimmit Public Library.
  • Make Break DIY Ornament (adults). 1 p.m. – 3 p.m. Michael’s Pan Am Shopping Center, Fairfax. Call store for availability. Cost of supplies.
  • Fall Foliage Tour Boat Ride. 4 p.m. – 5 p.m. Burke Lake Park. $8
  • Dia de los Muertos celebration. 5 p.m – 8 p.m. National Portrait Gallery. Washington, DC.

Sunday, November 3

  • Fall Foliage Tour Boat Ride. 4 p.m. – 5 p.m. Burke Lake Park. $8

Make advance plans with the event listing for the full month of November 2019.

Christmas Crafts Classes Calendar

Photo by Irina Iriser on Pexels.com

Do you love to make crafts? Here’s a handy list of upcoming Christmas crafts classes for your reference. Scroll down to print or share. Classes are free, unless otherwise indicated. Enjoy!

Saturday, Nov 2

Make Break DIY Ornament (adults). 1 p.m. – 3 p.m. Michael’s Pan Am Shopping Center, Fairfax. Call store for availability. Cost of supplies.

Saturday, Nov 9

Make Break DIY Mini Christmas Tree decorations (adults). 1 p.m. – 3 p.m. Michael’s Pan Am Shopping Center, Fairfax. Call store for availability. Cost of supplies.

Thursday, Nov 14

Holiday Wreath Making (18 and up). 6 p.m. – 8 p.m. Reston Community Center. $45

Saturday, Nov 16

Make Break DIY Christmas Wreath (adults). 1 p.m. – 3 p.m. Michael’s Pan Am Shopping Center, Fairfax. Call store for availability. Cost of supplies.

Sunday, Nov 17

Paint Christmas Ornaments (family program). 11 a.m. – 12 noon. Tysons-Pimmit Public Library.

Friday, Dec 6

Make an Ornament (craft activity for Adults). 1 p.m. – 2 p.m. Reston Public Library.

Saturday, Dec 7

Make Break DIY Gingerbread House (adults). 1 p.m. – 3 p.m. Michael’s Pan Am Shopping Center, Fairfax. Call store for availability. Cost of supplies.

Monday, Dec 9

Jewelry Making. 7 p.m. – 8:30 p.m. Reston Regional Library. Reston. Free but register in advance.

Saturday, Dec 14

Make Break DIY Christmas T-Shirt (adults). 1 p.m. – 3 p.m. Michael’s Pan Am Shopping Center, Fairfax. Call store for availability. Cost of supplies.

Monday, Dec 16

Painting Poinsettias craft activity. 6:30 p.m. – 8:30 p.m. Thomas Jefferson Library. Falls Church. Free but register in advance.

Virginia Beach Christmas Lights Display (Video)

Check out this wonderful video showing the Christmas lights on the Virginia Beach Boardwalk. I hope I get to see this one day!