From Ballston’s pop-up library to a beer festival: What we’re looking forward to this week, July 29-Aug. 4

This week, the editorial team at Northern Virginia Magazine is looking forward to reading, pizza, E.T., murals and potentially making peach cobbler.

Paradiso in the Park (Photo by Sam Kittner for Visit Alexandria)

This story appears in our weekly Things to Do newsletter, sent out to subscribers every Monday. Get it in your inbox by signing up here.

By Katie BiancoJess FeldmanHolly GambrellStefanie Gans and Jennifer Zeleski

A mid-year resolution
We’re more than halfway through 2019, and it’s safe to say that many people have completely abandoned the New Year’s resolutions they set on Jan. 1. (To be honest, I can’t even remember what my resolution was.) So, I’m proposing we all make mid-year resolutions. I’ll start: Stop buying so many books. Although I love supporting local bookstores, a huge vice I have is buying all the books I want, instead of just heading to libraries in the area to get my reading fix for free. That all changes this week when I head to Ballston Quarter’s pop-up librarywhich closes Aug. 2offering not only books, but also an immersive exhibit from Harvard University’s metaLAB called Alterspace. -HG // 4238 Wilson Blvd., Arlington; free

E.T. phone home
Steven Spielberg has been pulling my heartstrings for pretty much the entirety of my life. From his thrilling, yet comical 1975 classic, Jaws, to his recent portrayal of the Watergate scandal in The Post, each film is so characteristically different than the next and still, Spielberg finds a way to intrigue me. Of all his masterpieces, though, E.T. The Extra-Terrestrial is by far my favorite. I’m not sure if it was the bond between Elliot and E.T. or the fantastic flying bike scene that appealed to my 8-year-old self when I first saw the flick, but either way, I am just as entertained today as I was then. So this Friday, I will be heading to the Filene Center to hear the National Symphony Orchestra perform in-sync to the original movie at the E.T. the Extra-Terrestrial in Concert event. Nothing like a classic score to inspire my child-like imagination, right? JF // Filene Center: 1551 Trap Road, Vienna; Aug. 2, 7 p.m.; $40

One more beer fest
With new breweries seemingly opening all of the time, it’s increasingly hard to drive to the source for all of this Virginia-made beer. Pizzeria Paradiso is helping out with Paradiso in the Park, bringing 30 Virginia craft breweries together on the Old Town Alexandria waterfront for its inaugural beer fest. Breweries include Aslin, Caboose, Commonwealth, Crooked Run, Fairwinds, Old Bust Head and Solace. Also find pizza, meatballs, live music, lawn games and whatever splash golf is. SG // Waterfront Park: 1 King St., Alexandria; Aug. 3, noon-8 p.m.; free ($6 beer tickets, $5 food tickets)

Mural mastery
It’s no secret that I have no artistic talent. Draw a straight line? Nope. Try to paint a portrait? Your dog could probably put something prettier on a canvas. But just because I don’t have artistic talent doesn’t mean I can’t appreciate it when I see it. That’s why I’m headed to see an inspiring handful of artists bring their talent to life at the Workhouse Mural Project and Festival in Lorton. Not only is the Workhouse Arts Center‘s history fascinating, there’s something about mural art that feels more important than just an Instagram-worthy trend. I remember when I first started seeing murals pop up on brick canvases around my hometown in North Carolina, and now that city is plastered with astonishing spray-painted, airbrushed and hyper-realistic images of Wonder Woman, Stan Lee and Mac Miller. I’m hoping to catch Joey Allen’s creations at the festival, who will travel from Winston-Salem, North Carolina, to get a quick glimpse at something that reminds me of home, as well as just to look at incredible artwork. JZ // Workhouse Arts Center: 9518 Workhouse Way, Lorton; Aug. 3, 3-9 p.m.; $20

More peaches, please
We just returned from a week at the beach in North Carolina and, on the way home, we stopped at a roadside farm stand and bought a bucket of peaches. Turns out, my kids loooove peaches. I’ve been slicing them up every morning so my 3-year-old can have them for breakfast. Finding something healthy your kids loves is always great, so I’m going to keep it going by taking the family to the Peach Daze Fuzztival at Great Country Farms this weekend. The annual festival offers a peach pancake breakfast, peach-themed games and peach picking. We’ll load up on the fruit, have them for breakfast all next week and maybe I’ll even make a peach cobbler. KB // Filene Center: 18780 Foggy Bottom Road, Bluemont; Aug. 3-4 and 10-11; Tickets at the gate: $12 adults, $10 children 

Want more fun? Check out the August issue’s NoVA in 19 to see what else should be on your radar as we kick off the last month of summer vacation.

Loading cart ...