Hearts, Flowers, and One Big Parade

Hearts, Flowers, and One Big Parade

Valentine's Day, GW events planned in city.

Valentine's Day has gone high-tech in Alexandria.

Weekend hotel packages, romantic dinner specials, Valentine gift ideas, and even an email Valentine card can all be found online at Alexandria Convention and Visitors Bureau's site at www.FunSide.com.

Dinner ideas range from five course meals at some of Alexandria's most elegant restaurants to innovative local cuisine at everyday eateries. Hotel packages include champagne and roses as well as welcome baskets with chocolate covered strawberries. Retail shops feature everything from the most unusual to the most practical.

For lovers of romantic music, the Alexandria Symphony will present guest pianist Peter Serkin in a concert of Beethoven and Brahms selections inspired by the movie "Immortal Beloved," Saturday, February 15, at 8 p.m., at the Rachel Schlesinger Concert Hall and Arts Center, according to Laura Overstreet, ACVA deputy director.

"And, ACVA's online ideas are not there just for tourists," she said. "They are there for our local residents to use as well. We want them to use our web page on a regular basis."

COMBINED WITH Valentine's Day activities is the George Washington Birthday Celebration Weekend, events include a Birthnight Banquet and Ball at Gadsby's Tavern Museum, a celebration at the Mount Vernon Estate and the largest GW celebration parade in the nation on Monday, February 17.

The parade kicks off at 1 p.m. in Old Town with marching bands, floats, military and reenactment units, and a host of other participants. Details can be found at www.washingtonbirthday.net or by calling 703-838-9270.

Other events honoring the nation's first president include:

* A classic 10K race on Eisenhower Avenue east of the Holiday Inn beginning at 9 A.M. on February 15.

* Breakfast with George Washington on February 15-16, at the Mount Vernon Estate. For details call 703-780-2000.

* Revolutionary War encampment at Fort Ward, 4301 W. Braddock Road, 10 a.m. to 4 p.m., February 16.

* Open House at Friendship Firehouse, 107 S. Alfred St., 10 a.m. to 4 p.m., February 17. Established in 1774, it houses historic exhibits and firefighting equipment.

* Ceremony honoring the unknown soldier of the Revolutionary War. Old Presbyterian Meeting House, 312 S. Fairfax St., 11 a.m. and noon, February 17.

* Washington's farewell address, 11 a.m. and noon, February 17, The Lyceum, 201 S. Washington, St.