Come one, come all, to the 29th annual Centreville Day celebration. It’s set for this Saturday, Oct. 16, from 10 a.m.-5 p.m., in Historic Centreville Park, 5714 Mount Gilead Road (off Braddock Road, across Route 29 from the IHOP).
The fun includes a parade, live entertainment, children’s activities, marketplace, food, crafts, pet pageant, safety expo and historic-homes tours. Free, remote parking and shuttle service will be at Carrabba’s Italian Grill, 5805 Trinity Parkway. (Overflow parking: Trinity Centre, 5860 Trinity Parkway).
Friends of Historic Centreville puts on Centreville Day, and Event Chair Cheryl Repetti and her Centreville Day Planning Committee volunteers have worked on this festival since February. They’re also excited that it’ll again be in person.
“Last year’s event was scaled back and virtual, so we’re looking forward to seeing old friends, enjoying live entertainment and eating great food,” said Repetti. “We hope everyone will join us. Although it’s outdoors, we’re encouraging folks to wear masks when they can’t socially distance, and they must wear them inside any buildings.”
“With our busy lives, it’s nice to stop and appreciate what a great community Centreville is,” she continued. “From its earliest settlement in the 1760s to the dynamic and culturally diverse community we know today, Centreville has experienced a wealth of history. And Centreville Day is a great opportunity to explore the places where it happened, while having fun with your family.”
At the 10 a.m. opening ceremonies, Supervisor Kathy Smith (D-Sully) will present Centreville Day’s Citizens of the Year Awards on the stage near St. John’s Episcopal Church. And throughout the day, pets will be blessed on the St. John’s lawn. Thanks to the sponsors, almost all activities are free; but attendees must pay for whatever they purchase.
Masters of Ceremonies from Bach2Rock will introduce the performers, including local rock band, The VaDeatles, comprised of Stone Middle teachers. Entertainment schedule (subject to change):
10:30 a.m. - Magic Hand Orchestra
11:45 a.m. - The VaDeatles
1 p.m. - Centreville Dance Academy
1:20 p.m. - Washington Senior Korean Harmonica Players
1:40 p.m. - Korean Women’s Autoharp Ensemble
2 p.m. – Blessing of the Pets by the Rev. Carol Hancock of St. John’s Episcopal.
2:10 p.m. - Cavalcade of Pets
3 p.m. - Northern Virginia Wushu Academy (martial arts demonstration)
3:30 p.m. - Hula Hoop Contest open to all attendees to vie for Pineapple Awards
4 p.m. - Bach2Rock All Stars (music).
Parade, Cavalcade of Pets
* American Legion Post 1995 organizes the parade. Participants are expected to include fire, police and sheriff’s personnel, McGruff the Crime Dog, Scout groups and dancers. Individuals and families are welcome; decorate a bike or scooter and join the fun. Costumes are encouraged, and prizes will be awarded. For example, the Most Enthusiastic and Most Patriotic groups will receive $50 each.
The parade assembles near Wharton Park Court, beginning at 10:30 a.m. It’ll kick off from Wharton Lane at 11 a.m., passing the stage shortly before noon and continuing along Mt. Gilead Road to Braddock Road. To register for it, see www.CentrevilleDay.org or contact parade coordinator Steve Hunter at email@example.com.
* Billed as “fabulous and friendly,” the Cavalcade of Pets onstage processional includes time for individual introductions of all kinds of pets. Registration for it begins at 1:30 p.m. by the
Pet costumes and tricks are welcome, but not required. “Feel free to bring your pet unadorned and share what you love best about them,” said Repetti. “Local pet stores and veterinarians have donated great prizes.” For further information, contact Cammy Gawlak at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Food, Marketplace, Safety Expo
* This year’s food court has moved. Look across the street from the Sears House and head to the end of the marketplace rows. Returning food vendors include Bangkok House and Kona Ice. Or venture down to the Old Stone Church for hot dogs, a traditional Plowman’s lunch or home-baked treats.
This year’s marketplace features several crafters, including artists Rebekah Keener (pet portraits) and Missy Sheldrake. Children may wear their Halloween costumes and trick or treat at the vendors’ booths. Also here are local businesses, churches and nonprofits. Spaces are still available in both the food court and marketplace; to participate, contact Repetti at centrevilleFHC@gmail.com.
* The Safety Expo features snake expert Bill Crisp, plus Fairfax County first responders, their vehicles and equipment, and McGruff the Crime Dog. This area promotes greater community interaction with fire and police, while teaching people about the safety services available here and how to better respond to emergencies. The Sheriff's Office will make child IDs, and Family Hearing Services will do free screenings.
Children’s Activities, History
The children’s area will feature a climbing wall, double slide and various games. It’s in a new location this year, on the lawn at Mount Gilead. Children and adults may also become immersed in history by either walking or riding the history train to visit Mount Gilead, the Old Stone Church, the Spindle Sears House and St. John’s Church.
Built as a tavern in 1785, Mount Gilead is one of the oldest surviving buildings in Centreville, dating back to when it was called Newgate. In honor of Centreville Day, this private residence will be open for small-group, guided tours.
Or disembark at Braddock Road stop and stroll downhill to explore the Old Stone Church (Church of the Ascension), do children’s crafts or buy food. There, as well will be local historian John Carter, sharing the community’s history and distributing walking-tour brochures of the Centreville Historic District. A display of curiosities and demonstrations drawn from 18th-century science is also planned.
And at the Spindle Sears House, reenactors will share WWII soldiers’ experiences. Purchased in 1933 from a Sears catalog, this tiny house will be open for tours led by Ellanor C. Lawrence Park historian Kiersten Fiore and Historic Centreville Society Board Member Debbie Robison.Sponsors
Supporting Centreville Day are its vendors, sponsors and community partners, including Korean Central Presbyterian Church, Sandy Spring Bank, Wegmans, Goodwill, Historic Centreville Society, Rotary Club of Centreville-Chantilly, Signarama of Centreville, American Legion Post 1995, Fairfax County Park Authority, Sully District Police, and Supervisor Smith’s office.Proceeds benefit the nonprofit Friends of Historic Centreville, dedicated to preserving history in Historic Centreville Park and western Fairfax County. For more event information or to be a vendor, go to www.CentrevilleDay.org.