Newcomers Guide: Year-round Festivals 2014-2015

Newcomers Guide: Year-round Festivals 2014-2015

A list of annual community events in the area.

The Sandstorm Ride is a hit at the Burke Centre Festival.

The Sandstorm Ride is a hit at the Burke Centre Festival. Photo Contributed


McLean Day attendees enjoy a riveting ride aboard a swinging pirate ship.

August 2014

Saturday/Aug. 30

Lake Anne Jazz & Blues Festival. 1 p.m. Lake Anne Plaza (Waterfront), 1609 Washington Plaza, Reston. Showcasing a variety of talented local emerging artists and national jazz performers. Visit

Saturday-Sunday/Aug. 30-31

War of 1812 Signature Event. Noon-5 p.m. Alexandria Waterfront, 3 Cameron Street, Alexandria. Visitors are invited to delight in interactive historical exhibits, boating activities and food trucks. Features a tug-of-war, cricket match and yacht race as well. 703-746-4242. Free. Visit

September 2014

Monday/Sept. 1 - Sunday/Sept. 7

Annual Workhouse Clay National Ceramics Exhibition. Workhouse Arts Center, 9518 Workhouse Way, Lorton. This exhibition represents the depth and breadth of contemporary functional and sculptural ceramic artworks being created throughout the country. Visit

Monday/Sept. 1

Herndon Labor Day Festival. 12-6 p.m. Herndon Town Green, 777 Lynn Street, Herndon. Downtown Herndon celebrates Labor Day with an annual festival - great music, a craft show, food, wineries, micro-brews and culinary demonstrations will all be there. Visit

Saturday/Sept. 6

Virginia Indian Festival. 10 a.m.-4 p.m. Riverbend Park, 8700 Potomac Hills Street, Great Falls. Tribal dancing, songs and drumming make history come alive each September at the Virginia Indian Festival at Riverbend Park. Visit

Saturday-Sunday/Sept. 6-7

37th Annual Burke Centre Festival. 9:30 a.m.-10 p.m. 6060 Burke Centre Parkway, Burke. Burke Centre's signature event, which celebrates the spirit of the community each year with rides, activities and live entertainment for all ages to enjoy. Visit

Sunday/Sept. 7

Reston Triathlon. 7 a.m. Lake Audubon, Twin Branches Road, Reston. Swim, bike and run in the “Reston World Championships.” Visit

Thursday/Sept. 11-18

16th Annual Fall for the Book Festival. George Mason University, 4400 University Drive, Fairfax. A week-long, multiple-venue, regional festival that brings together people of all ages and interests. Visit

Saturday/Sept. 13

18th Annual CCÉ Irish Folk Festival. Noon-8:30 p.m. Sherwood Community Center, 3740 Old Lee Highway, Fairfax and The Auld Shebeen Irish Pub, 3971 Chain Bridge Road, Fairfax. All are invited to enjoy, free of charge, the “pure drop” - the beauty and depth of Irish music, dance, language and sport as it has taken root and come into full flower in our community. Visit

Silver Live Music and Food Truck Festival. 12-10 p.m. 1800 Tysons Blvd., McLean. Listen to performances from renowned local and national acts and find displays of fine arts and a variety of refreshments to benefit the Spirit of Hope Children’s Foundation. Visit

Lorton’s Fall Festival. 11 a.m. Lorton Station Town Center, 8998 Lorton Station Blvd., Lorton . Enjoy a magic booth, pumpkin painting, photo booth, games, prizes and more. Visit

Saturday-Sunday/Sept. 13-14

King Street Art Festival. 10 a.m.-7p.m. Saturday, 10 a.m.-5 p.m. Sunday. Old Town, King Street, Alexandria. At this community festival, art enthusiasts can discover spectacular paintings, life-size sculptures, jewelry, photography, ceramics and more. Visit

Saturday/Sept. 20

5K/10K Dulles Day on the Runway. 7:30 a.m. 14390 Air and Space Museum Pkwy., Chantilly. The full length of the runway will be closed off for runners to experience a flat, fast course and a unique look at the airport grounds. All race proceeds will benefit Special Olympics Virginia, the Committee for Dulles Community Outreach and the Washington Airports Task Force. Visit

Dulles Day Plane Pull. 10:30 a.m.-4 p.m. Dulles International Airport. Teams of 25 are pitted against one another to see who can pull a 164,000+ pound Airbus 12 feet the fastest in Special Olympics Virginia’s “heaviest” fundraiser. Visit

Beer, Bourbon & BBQ Fest. 12-6 p.m. 8025 Galleria Drive, McLean. Attend for a day of beer sippin’, bourbon tastin’, music listenin’, cigar smokin’ and barbecue eatin’. Your admission buys a sampling glass so you can enjoy all you care to taste while attending seminars in the tasting theater and enjoying live music all day. Visit

Mount Vernon Colonial Market and Fair. 9 a.m.-5 p.m. 3200 Mount Vernon Memorial Highway, Mount Vernon. Fifty colonial-attired artisans demonstrate 18th-century crafts and sell traditional wares such as baskets, woodcarvings, tin and ironwork, leatherworkings, weavings, furniture and much more. Visit

Paint Herndon Celebrate the Arts. 9:30 a.m. - 3:30 p.m. ArtSpace Herndon, 750 Center Street, Herndon. The annual Paint Herndon event is a celebration of the arts and the anniversary of the opening of ArtSpace Herndon, complete with a painting competition. Visit

Saturday-Sunday/Sept. 20-21

2nd Annual Arlington Festival of the Arts. 10 a.m.-5 p.m. Highland Street in the Clarendon District, Arlington. More than 100 artists will showcase their work including paintings, jewelry, pottery, glass, and much more. Visit for more.

Sunday/Sept. 21

Herndon Kids Triathalon. 7:30 a.m. Herndon Community Center, 814 Ferndale Avenue, Herndon. This kids triathlon gives youngsters an opportunity to compete in one of the fastest growing sports in the United States. The event is designed for any youth, ages 6-16, regardless of athletic ability or prior triathlon experience. Visit


A troupe of Cambodian dancers perform on the World Stage at the Reston Multicultural Festival on Sept. 28, 2013. This year’s festival will take place on Saturday, Sept. 27, 2014.

Saturday/Sept. 27

Clarendon Day. 11 a.m.-5 p.m. Near Clarendon Metro station, 3100 Wilson Blvd., Arlington. A celebration of the Clarendon neighborhood and a showcase for the people who make the neighborhood great with activities, live entertainment and food. Visit

Reston Multicultural Festival. 11 a.m.-6 p.m. 2310 Colts Neck Road, Reston. A celebration of the diversity and community spirit that is found in Reston, this annual event brings together the people of Reston to celebrate the rich medley of cultures. Visit

Sunday/Sept. 28

Walk to End Alzheimer’s. 3 p.m. Reston Town Center, 11900 Market St., Reston. Walk and fundraise to further the care, support and research efforts of the Alzheimer's Association. Visit

NatureFest. 1-5 p.m. Runnymede Park, 195 Herndon Parkway, Herndon. Explore various nature stations throughout the park including butterflies, bees, life in the meadow, web of life and much more with live animal shows throughout the day. Visit

October 2014

Thursday/Oct. 2

3rd Annual Reston Town Center Help the Homeless Walk. 12 p.m. Reston Town Center, 11959 Market St, Reston. Walk from Mayflowers Floral Design Studio on The Promenade to the Embry Rucker Community Shelter and back. Funds will enable Cornerstones to provide essential resources and services for individuals and families in the community who are homeless or at risk of becoming homeless. Visit

Friday-Sunday/Oct. 3-5

Fall Wine Festival and Sunset Tour. 6-9 p.m. Mount Vernon Estate, 3200 George Washington Memorial Pkwy., Mount Vernon. Enjoy live blues and spectacular views of the Potomac River while sampling wine from 16 Virginia wineries. Visitors learn about the successes and failures of our Founding Father’s wine endeavors, enjoy live blues music, and meet “George and Martha Washington” on the Mansion's piazza. Visit

Saturday/Oct. 4

Art on the Avenue. 10 a.m.-6 p.m. 2301 Mount Vernon Avenue, Alexandria. A multicultural arts festival celebrating the community’s diversity through the arts in the Del Ray neighborhood in Alexandria, Virginia. Visit


Rebeccah Graves and her daughter, Laylah, 6, wore traditional Bavarian dress to the Vienna Oktoberfest. Laylah is wearing the same dress that mother Rebeccah wore as a child. Connor, 3, is lederhosen-less.

Oktoberfest Vienna. 11 a.m. – 7 p.m. Historic Church Street, Vienna. Enjoy beer, wine, food, music, kids activities and more. Visit

Sunday/Oct. 5

McLean Project for the Arts ArtFest. 10 a.m.-5 p.m. McLean Central Park, 468 Dolley Madison Blvd., McLean. The park is transformed into a lively landscape of mini art galleries showcasing and offering for sale the work of a diverse group of 50 juried artists. Visit

19th Annual Paws for a Cause 3K Walk. 12 p.m. Weber's Pet Supermarket, 11021 Lee Highway, Fairfax. Paws for a Cause benefits Fairfax Pets on Wheels, Inc., an all-volunteer organization dedicated to providing pet visitation to residents of nursing homes and hospitals since 1987. Visit

Saturday-Sunday/Oct. 11-12

Oktober Fest Reston. Reston Town Center, 11900 Market St., Reston. Enjoy food, wine, beer, live entertainment, a carnival and the Anthem Great Pumpkin 5K at Northern Virginia’s largest fall festival. Visit

Saturday/Oct. 11

Fall Festival in Old Town Historic Fairfax. 10209 Main Street, Fairfax. What started out as a small market for artisans has grown to a festival with over 400 arts, crafts and food vendors, children’s activities and entertainment for all ages. Visit

Thursday-Saturday/Oct. 16-Nov. 1

Great Pumpkin Gathering. 6-10 p.m. 1800 Tysons Blvd., McLean. Artisan pumpkin carvers showcase a dazzling display of pumpkin art beyond your wildest imagining. Visit

Friday-Sunday/Oct. 17-19

19th Annual Craftsmen's Fall Classic Art & Craft Festival. 10 a.m.-6 p.m. Dulles Expo Center, 4320 Chantilly Shopping Center, Chantilly. Features original designs and work from hundreds of talented artists and craftspeople from across America. Visit

Saturday/Oct. 18

Historic Hallows Eve. 4 p.m. Sully Historic Site, 3650 Historic Sully Way, Chantilly. Experience the traditions of Virginians in the 18th and 19th centuries by celebrating All Hallows Eve with storytelling, fortune telling, fall foods and family gatherings. Visit

Saturday-Sunday/Oct. 18-19

Claude Moore Colonial Farm 1771 Market Fair. 11 a.m.-4:30 p.m. 6310 Georgetown Pike, McLean. Warm yourself by the fires and enjoy the splendor of autumn with crisp local apples, warm savory meat pies and hearty breads, or let Market Fair entertainers, tradesmen and the militia amuse and educate you. Visit

Tysons Harvest Festival. 12-6 p.m. 1800 Tysons Blvd., McLean. Stroll through the arts and crafts booths and taste some of the fun flavors of fall. Visit

Sunday/Oct. 19

Neighbors Feeding Neighbors 5K. 9 a.m. 7925 Jones Branch Dr., McLean. Even though Northern Virginia is considered one of the wealthiest jurisdictions in the country, we still face a poverty rate of about 5 percent - more than 90,000 people are living in poverty and 30 percent are children. Come run or walk to help feed our neighbors. Visit

Friday/Oct. 24

Spooktacular. 6:30-8:30 p.m. Herndon Community Center, 814 Ferndale Avenue, Herndon. Enjoy ghoulish games, a spooky craft and a children's show. Visit

Saturday/Oct. 25

Volunteer Fest 2014. A region-wide day of community service that mobilizes hundreds of volunteers to help nonprofits accomplish tasks that they would not have the time or resources to do on their own. Visit for times and locations.

Clifton Haunted Trail. 7-10 p.m. Chapel Road, Clifton. A terrifying annual event that winds through Clifton's 8 Acre Park. Visit

Air and Scare. 2-7 p.m. Steven F. Udvar-Hazy Center, 14390 Air and Space Museum Pkwy., Chantilly. See the spooky side of air and space at the annual Halloween event. Arrive in costume for safe indoor trick-or-treating, creepy crafts, spooky science experiments and other Halloween-themed activities. Visit

Wednesday/Oct. 29

68th Annual Vienna Halloween Parade. 7 p.m. Maple Avenue, Vienna. With the theme of "Celebrating the Tradition of Vienna Girls Sports," come in costume to celebrate Halloween. Visit

November 2014

Saturday/Nov. 1

The Robinson Marketplace. 10 a.m.-4 p.m. 5305 Sideburn Road, Fairfax. Shop at over 80 vendors at the Holiday Market, raffle and silent auction sponsored by the Robinson Secondary School PTSA. Visit

Tuesday/Nov. 4

Election Day. General Election. Visit and

Tuesday/Nov. 11

Arlington National Cemetery Veterans Day Ceremony. Arlington National Cemetery, Arlington. About 5,000 visitors attend the annual remembrance ceremonies in the Memorial Amphitheater. Visit

Saturday/Nov. 22

Turkey Trot 5K Race. 4 p.m. Herndon Community Center, 814 Ferndale Avenue, Herndon. The course takes you through Herndon Centennial Golf Course grass and paved paths, parts of the W&OD paved trail and vehicular paved road. All canned food will be donated to LINK. Visit

Wednesday/Nov. 19 - Sunday/Jan. 4

Lights Festival. 7700 Bull Run Drive, Centreville. Almost two and a half miles of light displays and a Holiday Village to celebrate the season. Visit

Friday/Nov. 28

Alexandria Tree Lighting. 7-9 p.m. Market Square, 301 King St., Alexandria. Annual event featuring lighting the City tree, performances and a visit from Santa to open the Christmas season. Visit

Friday/Nov. 28 -Tuesday/Jan. 6

Christmas in Mount Vernon. 9 a.m. - 4 p.m. 3200 Mount Vernon Memorial Highway, Mount Vernon. Mount Vernon decks the halls with themed Christmas trees on the estate and festive greenery in the Mansion. Visit

December 2014

Monday/Dec. 1

Church Street Holiday Stroll. 6-9 p.m. Freeman House and Store, 131 Church St. N.E., Vienna. Enjoy fun family-friendly activities including a visit from Santa, petting zoo, free hot chocolate and roasting marshmallows at supervised bonfires. Visit

Saturday/Dec. 6

City of Fairfax Festival of Lights and Carols. Sherwood Community Center, 3740 Old Lee Highway, Fairfax. Come enjoy live holiday music, hot cider, s'mores by the Yule log, petting farm, ferris wheel, caroling and lighting of the Christmas tree in the winter wonderland. Visit for times and locations.

Great Falls Celebration of Lights. 5:30-8 p.m. Great Falls Village Centre Hill. Watch Santa and Mrs. Claus arrive to light the Great Falls Tree, drink hot chocolate and cider and listen to beautiful holiday music. Visit

44th Annual Campagna Center Scottish Walk Parade. 11 a.m. Old Town Alexandria, parade begins at St. Asaph and Wolfe Streets. More than 100 Scottish Clans, pipe and drum bands, Scottish dancers, re-enactment groups, Scottie dogs, dignitaries and, of course, Santa Claus will march through the streets of Old Town. Visit or

Sunday/Dec. 7

Holiday Arts and Crafts Show. 10 a.m.-4 p.m. Herndon Community Center, 814 Ferndale Avenue, Herndon. A variety of handcrafted items and fine art will be on sale including wreaths, quilts, jewelry, Christmas ornaments, decorations, original artwork, photography, stained glass and more. Visit

Saturday-Sunday/Dec. 13-14

Great Falls Studios Holiday Show and Sale. Wolf Trap Center for Education, 1645 Trap Road, Vienna. This annual show includes paintings, pottery, traditional and digital photographs, jewelry, drawings, art quilts and hand pulled lithographic prints, plus artful gifts and cards. All of the artwork is created by Great Falls artists, most of whom work out of their home studios. Visit

January 2015

Friday/Jan. 9 - Spring

Live Music at Paradise Springs Winery. Fridays 5-9 p.m. and Saturdays 2-6 p.m. Various live artists perform every Friday and Saturday. Visit

February 2015


Community Tax Assistance Day. Fairfax SkillSource Center, 7611 Little River Turnpike, Suite 300 West, Annandale. The IRS Volunteer Income Tax Assistance (VITA) program offers free assistance with 2015 Federal and state tax returns for households with a total income of $52,000 or less. Visit

March 2015

Second Tuesday in March

Clarendon Mardi Gras Parade. Annual parade to celebrating Fat Tuesday. Visit

Second Sunday in March

Chantilly Egg Hunt. Saturdays and Sundays. 26469 Ticonderoga Road, Chantilly. Join the Easter Bunny and search for candy and toy-filled eggs. Visit

Third Wednesday in March

Herndon Bluegrass Concert Series. Friday and Saturday evenings. Holy Cross Lutheran Church, 1090 Sterling Road, Herndon. Listen to different bluegrass concerts every week. Visit

Friday-Sunday/March 20-22

19th Annual Craftsmen's Spring Classic Art & Craft Festival. 10 a.m.-6 p.m. Dulles Expo Center, 4320 Chantilly Shopping Center Chantilly. Features original designs and work from hundreds of talented artists and craftspeople from across America. Visit

Friday/March 20-Sunday/April 12

National Cherry Blossom Festival. Enjoy world-class entertainment from the U.S. and Japan as they welcome springtime and celebrate the anniversary of the gift of trees from Tokyo to Washington, D.C.. Visit

April 2015

April - June

Relay for Life. Fundraise participate in all-night-long events to help those affected by cancer through the American Cancer Society. Visit for specific events and details.

Second Week of April

24th Annual Best of Reston Gala. An event to honor outstanding individuals, organizations and businesses for their distinctive service in making the Reston/Herndon community a better place in which to live, play and work. Visit

Saturday/April 18-25

Historic Garden Week. This eight -day statewide event provides visitors a unique opportunity to see gardens, as well as houses with over 2,000 flower arrangements created by Garden Club of Virginia members. Visit

Late April - Mid-May

Destination Fairfax: Annual Spotlight on the Arts Festival. Dedicated to showcasing the very best of the visual and performing arts in the City of Fairfax, Fairfax Spotlight on the Arts is an annual three-week festival comprising artists in and at local venues. Visit

Third Saturday in April

Herndon Easter Egg Hunt. Frying Pan Farm Park, 2709 West Ox Road, Herndon. Join the Easter Bunny and his helpers for an eggstraspecial event including games, craft projects and egg hunts by age. Visit

Fourth Saturday in April

Reston’s Great Grapes Wine, Art and Food Festival. Reston Town Center. Take your tasting glass as you enter the festival and stroll from tent to tent and table to table tasting and sampling the rich heritage of Virginia vines. Visit

May 2015

Saturday/May 2- Sunday/May 3

Fairfax Fine Arts Festival. Fairfax Corner, 11900 Palace Way, Fairfax. A fine art festival in the heart of Fairfax. Visit

Thursday/May 28-Sunday/May 31

Herndon Festival. Historic downtown Herndon, 777 Lynn St., Herndon. Four days of fun for the whole family. Visit

Fourth Saturday in May

Springfield Days. A full blown community-wide celebration that harkens back to the good old days. Visit

June 2015

Second Friday in June

Taste of Reston. Reston Town Center, 11900 Market Street, Reston.The largest outdoor food festival in the area with two days of restaurants and community vendors, live entertainment, a carnival and a Wine ‘n Dine area. Visit

Mondays, June-August

Crystal Screen. 1851 S. Bell St., Arlington. A free outdoor film every Monday at sunset in the summer. Visit

Fridays in June

Vintage Crystal: Wine in the Water Park. 10 p.m. Crystal City Water Park, 1750 Crystal Drive, Arlington. Live music and wine-sipping every Friday in June. Visit

Friday/June 5-Sunday/June 7

Celebrate Fairfax! Fairfax County Government Center, 12000 Government Center Parkway. Northern Virginia’s largest annual three-day festival and community-wide celebration at the Fairfax County Government Center. Visit

Fourth Saturday in June

Clifton Wine Festival. 7150 Main St., Clifton. Virginia vineyards and wineries come together for a day of wine, food, arts and crafts. Visit

July 2015

Saturday/July 4

Great Falls Fourth of July Celebration. Great Falls Village Center. A day of festivities in Great Falls to celebrate the birthday of the United States. Visit

City of Fairfax Independence Day Celebration. Events at various locations around the city. A fun-filled Independence Day celebration in the City of Fairfax. Visit

Second Saturday in July

Obon Festival. Ekoji Buddhist Temple, 6500 Lakehaven Lane, Burke. A traditional Obon Festival and Odori (dancing) around a yagura, with a special religious service on Sunday to remember loved ones who have passed away. Visit

USA and Alexandria Birthday Celebration. Oronoco Bay Park, 100 Madison Street, Alexandria. Celebrate Alexandria's 265th birthday along the Potomac waterfront with fireworks, cake and live music. Visit

August 2015

First Weekend in August

Country 4-H and Frying Pan Park Park Show. Frying Pan Farm Park, 2709 West Ox Road, Herndon. A weekend of 4-H competitions, farm animals and carnival rides. Visit

Tuesday/Aug. 4

National Night Out. A celebration across America to heighten police awareness and enhance community relations. Visit for local events.

Wednesday/Aug. 5-Sunday/Aug. 9

Arlington County Fair. Thomas Jefferson Community Center, 3501 Second St. S., Arlington. One of the largest free events on the East Coast with competitive exhibits, midway rides and games, entertainment, vendors and more. Visit

Third Sunday in August

Pakistan Independence Day Festival. Bull Run Regional Park, 7700 Bull Run Drive, Centreville. A fun filled day for all ages, cultural performances by popular artists from Pakistan, Pakistani cuisine, handicrafts, boutiques, sports and kite flying. Visit