Posts Tagged ‘Alexandria’

August Family Fun in NoVA= Fairs Rule

By Micaela Williamson

From funnel cakes to livestock, fire trucks to LEGO trains, August is packed with fairs to delight every interest and age level.

Northern Virginia Festivals and Fairs

Photo courtesy of gosphotodesign/

Fairfax County 4H Fair and Carnival
July 30-Aug. 2, 2014

The grounds of Fairfax County’s favorite farm becomes filled with contests, farm animals, carnival rides, and more. Families will love the free admission and so many interactive educational exhibits. Friday night at the fair is Big Truck Night, and kids can climb all over the biggest and coolest vehicles Fairfax County has to offer.


Friendship Firehouse Festival
Aug. 2, 2014

This popular family event includes outdoor exhibits, museum admission, antique fire apparatus, craft booths, entertainment and more. All children receive free helmets and The Alexandria Fire Department invites them aboard for a supervised visit inside the trucks.


Brick Fair
Aug. 2-3, 2014

LEGO fans and master builders take over the Dulles Expo Center with mind-boggling displays, models, trains, vendors, LEGO paraphernalia and plenty of hands-on activities for kids and adults alike. We recommend skipping the line by getting advance tickets online.


Arlington County Fair
Aug. 6-10, 2014

Amongst the urban sprawl, this fun-filled event has competitive exhibits, farm animals, community vendors, carnival rides, and lots of live entertainment. Additional events include a family-friendly 5K race and a nightly line up of outdoor movies featuring the fan favorites Frozen and The Lego Movie.


Prince William County Fair
Aug. 8-16, 2014

This highly regarded county fair is always a hit and includes attractions such as midway rides, vendors, interactive community booths, animals, and lots of live entertainment. Have some old-fashioned country fun by watching a tractor pull or rodeo, or the adrenaline pumping monster trucks and demolition derby. Check the website for daily schedules, coupons, and discount days.


The Lucketts Fair
Aug. 17-18, 2014

The Lucketts Fair caters to families and kids. There is true country fun with over 100 artisans and crafters, giant produce, homemade food and wholesome live entertainment.  Children will be pleased to pet animals, ride ponies, and participate in a-day-on-the-farm activities. This fair is a must for any aspiring little farmer.


National Book Festival
Aug. 30, 2014
Washington, D.C.

For the first time ever, the annual National Book Festival is moving indoors to the Washington Convention Center. The event is bursting with famous authors, live readings, book signings, and hands-on family activities. Before you go, download the special festival guide for kids and teachers online.

Courtesy of Tiffany Brown, Mamaratzy Photography

Micaela Williamson is a co-author of local travel guide, Kid Trips Northern Virginia, an extraordinary resource that provides descriptions, useful information and insider tips for hundreds of local destinations. Micaela is also an award winning blogger who enjoys supporting area businesses and scouting out family-friendly venues with her two young sons.


Get a sneak peek at the nice list at Alexandria’s annual Christmas in July

Posted by Editorial / Wednesday, July 23rd, 2014

Santa and Mrs. Claus at Christmas in July in Alexandria.

Santa and Mrs. Clause at Christmas in July. Photo by Abbie Rufener.

By Jessica Godart

Santa Claus is coming to town – and he’s showing up in his swim trunks. For the fifth year, Santa and Mrs. Claus will be making a special appearance for Alexandria’s Christmas in July event taking place at Union Street Public House in conjunction with The Christmas Attic next door.

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Hungry for Linkage: Ben’s Chili Bowl at Reagan + New Bar Crawl Regulations + Fairfax County Making Life Easier for Food Trucks

Posted by Editorial / Wednesday, July 23rd, 2014

Chili Cheese Fries at Ben's Chili Bowl / Photo by Stefanie Gans

By Ariel Yong

Ben’s Chili Bowl will open its first airport location at Reagan National Airport later this morning. Jack Potter, President and CEO of Metropolitan Washington Airports Authority, says, “It is fitting to have Ben’s at the airport, welcoming travelers and giving them their first taste of the region.”

Bar crawls in Clarendon may be changing after the Arlington County Board approved new event regulations Saturday. [ARLNow]

Eater asked readers to name their favorite local ice cream shops, and half of the nominees are in Virginia. Favorites include the Nicecream Factory of Arlington, The Creamery of Alexandria and Moo Thru of Bealeton. [EaterDC]

Fairfax County considers easing up on food truck restrictions. [FairfaxCity Patch] 

A handful of Virginia restaurants, such as Huong Viet in Eden Center and Taco Bamba of Falls Church, made the “12 Restaurants Guaranteed to Make You Leave the District” list. [Thrillist] 

Would you rather date a vegetarian or a vegan? [Yahoo]

Alexandria introduces bus-only lanes; FCPS considers later start times for high-school students

By Kate Masters

Alexandria inaugurates Metroway, the region’s first traffic lanes dedicated to buses

Fredericksburg boy heads home after receiving experimental drug treatment to beat viral infention
(NBC 4)

Federal judge sides with prosecutors on disclosing secret island getaway to jury in McDonnell corruption case
(Washington Post)

Fairfax County schools superintendent endorses later start times for high schoolers

NoVA’s New Place To Bounce: Alexandria Coliseum

Alexandria Coliseum

Photo courtesy of Alexandria Coliseum.

By Micaela Williamson

For several years Eric Axilbund had been trying to open up a combination sports and family entertainment facility to be located in the Alexandria area, but was unable to raise enough money to get it off the ground.  

“While I was working on raising more money to achieve this goal, I started an events company that operated inflatables at large and small outdoor events,” says Axilbund. “I discovered that Kid’s Choice Sports Center had opened up in Annandale; I stopped in to see if they were interested in using my company for any special events.  The owner happened to be there, and they were looking to partner with a company to set up a bounce and party center. We were able to come to terms and moved in shortly thereafter.”

 Alexandria Coliseum

Photo courtesy of Alexandria Coliseum.

Now, the new Alexandria Coliseum, located in Annandale, is promising to bring inflatable fun to families closer to the Beltway. The facility boasts the biggest inflatables in the area. The slide stands at 22-feet-tall. There is also a giant soccer themed moon bounce and an inflatable two level crossover challenge obstacle course.

Open bounce is offered every day from open to close for a fee of just $9.99 per child. There are no time limits either.  Once a child enters, they are given a wristband and are even able to come back later in the day, without paying again, to enjoy more jumping fun.

Since Alexandria Coliseum is located in Kid’s Choice Sports Center, guests get the benefits of having multiple activities under one roof.  Right now, the building is shared with Fairfax Athletic Center, Blue Box Sports, Foxy Mommy Fitness and other sports leagues.  While one child is having soccer practice on the turf field, another child can be playing in the fun center.  They also offer free Wi-Fi and seating both in the amusement area and in the observation lounge.  

Birthday parties and events rule the roost at Alexandria Coliseum. Prior to the party, a party host conducts and interview with the birthday child and uses that interview to help tailor the party to make it special and amazing. Rather than running around, the hassle-free party experience allows parents to relax, enjoy the party and focus on taking pictures and having a great time. Special parties and events are also available for sports’ teams and scout groups.

Axilbund adds, “One of our popular events is Teen Night. We bring in a local DJ and karaoke, have pizza and drinks and open exclusively for high school students.”  

Alexandria Coliseum is still continuing to improve and update its space. By the fall, they plan to introduce a redemption style arcade, and in early 2015, a ropes course and bumper cars will be added to the attractions.  They are also currently exploring the feasibility to add some limited food service.

Kid’s Choice Sports Center hopes to open a few more centers in the region, and Alexandria Coliseum plan to grow with them.

Courtesy of Tiffany Brown, Mamaratzy Photography

Micaela Williamson is a co-author of local travel guide, Kid Trips Northern Virginia, an extraordinary resource that provides descriptions, useful information and insider tips for hundreds of local destinations. Micaela is also an award winning blogger who enjoys supporting area businesses and scouting out family-friendly venues with her two young sons.




Celebrate Bastille Day in NoVA

Posted by Editorial / Friday, July 11th, 2014

Bastille Day in Paris / Photo by Stefanie Gans

By Ariel Yong

French or not, if you’re looking to celebrate Bastille Day, here are six places with French-inspired deals for the Monday holiday. Some celebrations begin tomorrow and have a few reservations left.  

Starting Saturday
Creme de la Creme is having a three-day event starting Saturday and ending Monday that includes French treats and discounts on items “Made in France.” / Various locations

Fontaine Caffe & Creperie is celebrating all weekend long with French cheese and sparkling cider tastings. / 119 South Royal St., Alexandria 

Vive la Revolution! Bastille Restaurant is serving a three course prix fixe menu for $39 from 11:30 a.m. to 8:30 p.m. The menu includes shrimp beignets and citrus cantaloupe panacotta. / 1201 N. Royal St., Alexandria (limited availability as of this morning) 

2941 Restaurant and Chef Bertrand Chemel invite you to “A Taste of France Dinner” with a seven course tasting menu. / 2941 Fairview Park Drive, Falls Church

On Monday, The Wine House is celebrating with a Burgundy Dinner featuring Albert Bichot with special guest and host Guillaume Suss. Entrees include escargot and tuna tartare. / 3950 University Drive, Suite 212, Fairfax (1 reservation left as of this morning)

A free round-trip ticket to Paris and free champagne? La Cote D’Or Cafe is hosting a Waiter’s Race at 2:15 p.m on Monday. Carry a martini glass full of champagne on a waiter’s tray, finish the race with the most champagne left in the glass and you’re heading to Paris for free. Choose dinner entrees from a prix fixe menu and there will be free champagne and live music. / 6876 Lee Highway, Arlington 

Plan out the Rest of July with These Fun Happenings

Posted by Editorial / Thursday, July 10th, 2014

Photo courtesy of Justin Alexander Bridal

Bloomingdale’s and Clinique will introduce the ‘Smart Custom-Repair Serum‘ on July 15. In the hot days of summer our skin undergoes some serious damage, the serum targets both  the surface and beneath the skin to better attack those problem spots. The benefit of it’s double penetration is that it targets the source of uneven skin tone, dark spots, lines, wrinkles and more. Pricing starts as low as $59 and is available at your local Bloomingdale’s.

Heading to Haymarket for some wedding dress shopping? Make sure to stop by Blush Bridal Boutique as they host an exclusive trunk show unveiling Justin Alexander‘s Spring 2015 line from July 25 – 27. Meet with trained bridal consultants and have a chance to inquire about any styling tips from the acclaimed designer for the line, Jose Dias,  who will be in the boutique July 25-26 from 10 a.m.-6 p.m. and July 27 from 12-4 p.m. Any brides making purchases at the event will receive a special gift valued at $150. Set up your appointment today for this limited time opportunity. 

It is a season for giving at The Nest Egg in Fairfax - a retailer for home furnishings and decorative accents will be donating a portion of upholstered furniture purchase orders with LEE Industries during the month of July to Journey 4 A Cure in Ashburn. LEE Industries, a North Carolina based furniture manufacturer, launched a new initiative in January 2014 ‘LEE L♥ves America – Giving Back‘ to promote supporting businesses in local communities. For more information check out their website dedicated to help support the movement.

Keep your eye out for a different type of red-and-white stripes when heading to Old Town Alexandria where a ‘Where’s Waldo’ event hosted by Hooray for Books! will be held along with 25 participating local businesses until July 31. To participate in the search for Waldo print out the ‘Find Waldo Passport‘ or visit Hooray for Books! to get one. The first 125 people to get their passport stamped or signed 10 or more times can win a prize at Hooray for Books! Those that get 20 or more can enter in a grand prize drawing where the winner will be announced at the ‘Where’s Waldo Party‘ at Hooray for Books! on July 31 at 6 p.m. 

Va. legislators at odds over Puckett resignation; Prince William pursues sexting case

By Kate Masters

Virginia legislators fight over state senator’s resignation

Prince William County prosecutors want to take explicit photos of teen in sexting case

Alexandria officials narrow down potential sites for Potomac Yard metro station
(Washington Post)

2014 State Fair of Virginia recruits performers
(NBC 4)

Outdoor Summer Film Festivals

Posted by Editorial / Wednesday, July 9th, 2014

See the stars under the stars at these outdoor film festivals happening almost every night this month. –Janeé Williams

5 Outdoor Summer Film Fesitivals in Northern Virginia

Photo courtesy of Tomas Skopal/

Rosslyn Outdoor Film Festival
This year’s theme, Working for the Weekend, features movies about work: “The Internship” July 11; “How to Lose a Guy in Ten Days” July 18; and “Up in the Air” July 25. At dusk.

Lake Anne Summer Film Festival
Lake Anne hosts themed movies every second Sunday. This month go back to high school with “The Breakfast Club” July 13.

Crystal Screen: In Flight
Crystal City takes to the skies with a plane-themed movie every Monday night at sunset. This month catch “Hot Shots!” July 7; “Up in the Air” July 14; “Con Air” July 21; and “Iron Eagle” July 28.

Comcast Film Fest
Enjoy family fun with “Despicable Me 2” July 18, and an action flick with “Hunger Games: Catching Fire” July 19.

Films in the Park
Films show every Friday in Strawberry Park with a new series each month. This month, the All American Series: “The Rookie” July 4; “Apollo 13” July 11; “JOBS” July 18; and “Captain America” July 25.

Check out more outdoor movies this summer here.

(July 2014)

Silver Line will extend to Udvar-Hazy; Harry Potter returns older and wiser

By Jessica Godart

New Silver Line to offer shuttle service to Udvar

JK Rowling gives readers a look at the elder Potter
(ABC News

Favorite bakery, “Crumbs,” crumbles, closes all shops
 (The Washington Post)

Alexandria residents rally against factories dumping toxins in river
(Alexandria Gazette)

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