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November Holiday Events in the Area

Laura Schwartz is a licensed Realtor in VA, D.C. and MD with McEnearney Associates in McLean. Reach the office at 703-790-9090.

Happening Now: Meadowlark Winter Walk of Lights
Daily, 5:30 p.m.

Meadowlark Botanical Gardens transforms into a half mile walk of amazing light displays with music. You can buy tickets online with the first entrance starting at 5:30 p.m.. At the end, there’s a big fire pit and a S’mores Snack Shop (the kids favorite part!).

The event runs everyday until January 6 and you can buy tickets online here.

Vienna Turkey Trot
Sunday, November 18, 8 a.m

Kids Fun Run, 5k and 10k race starting at 8 a.m.

Northern Virginia Handcrafters Guild Art & Craft Show
Friday, November 23, 10 a.m.

Northern Virginia Handcrafters Guild hosts their annual Art & Craft show at the Vienna Community Center where approximately 60 artists offer handmade pieces. Admission is $5 and you can learn more here.

Reston Town Center Holiday Parade
Friday, November 23, 11 a.m.

Macy’s style balloons, musicians, dancers, antique cars, characters, dignitaries and more come together at Reston Town Center for a 1-hour, half mile parade along Market Street.

The event includes Santa and Mrs Clause, along with photos, a mini-train ride and later in the day, the tree lighting and sing along. They usually hand out bells and the stores surrounding are open. You can find more info here.

2018 Church Street Holiday Stroll
Monday, November 26, 6 p.m.

Hosted on Church Street in front of the Freeman Store and Museum, you’ll find Santa on his fire truck at 6:15 to help the mayor light the Holiday Tree. There will be music, marshmallow-roasting stations and crafts.

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Ways to Give Back This Holiday Season

Laura Schwartz is a licensed Realtor in VA, D.C. and MD with McEnearney Associates in McLean. Reach the office at 703-790-9090.

There are many local charities you may not know about that offer great opportunity to give back this holiday season (and year round).

Committee for Helping Others (CHO)

All volunteer based organization in Vienna, Oakton, Dunn Loring and Merrifield providing emergency financial assistance, food aid, clothing, furniture, meals on wheels and transportation.

For directions to drop off or to pick up, please visit their website.

Bringing Resources to Aid Women’s Shelters (BRAWS)

Bringing empowerment to women and girls living in shelters by providing new undergarments and menstrual supplies. There are several drop off locations around the area, but their office is in Vienna at 303 Maple Avenue in Suite F. You can drop off new bras (tags on), unopened boxes of tampons and pads, and unopened packages of underwear.

Second Story (FKA Alternative House)

Providing a safe haven for children, youth and their families. You can donate hygiene products, food, shoes, clothing, school supplies, office supplies and/or furniture. They have 2 places to donate:

*They do accept lightly used goods, but won’t begin until January 2. Everything else must be new.

SHARE of McLean

Organization that provides emergency assistance in McLean and surrounding areas. They collect food, used clothing, furniture and help with transportation. They also provide computers and school supplies.

You can donate at their location at McLean Baptist Church (1367 Chain Bridge Road, McLean) every Wednesday and Saturday from 9:30 a.m.-12 p.m. (except Saturdays before Federal Holiday Mondays). For a list of what they need now, click here.

Britepaths (Formerly Our Daily Bread)

Britepaths helps 800 Fairfax County families with Thanksgiving meals, December holiday meals and holiday gifts for their children. You can sponsor a family, donate funds or volunteer.

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A Quick Guide to Moms and Dads Groups of Vienna and McLean

Laura Schwartz is a licensed Realtor in VA, D.C. and MD with McEnearney Associates in McLean. Reach the office at 703-790-9090.

Looking for mommy friends or friends for your little one? Look no further! There’s a group for that.

If you live in 22180, 22182, 22182, 22027 (Dunn Loring) and 22124 (Oakton) you can join the robust Vienna Moms group for $30 per year.

The group has a very active Facebook Page where members post questions ranging from child topics, vendors for various services and a gamut of other topics. Vienna Moms also provides a range of benefits:

  • Playgroups
  • Kids social events
  • Larger scale playdates (i.e. seasonal crafts)
  • Monthly events (magicians, musicians and traveling petting zoo)
  • Moms night out (sometimes free exercise classes, other times drinks at a local restaurant)
  • Speaker series (self defense, parenting experts, 529 and financial planners)
  • Philanthropy
  • Book club/other clubs for moms

The current headcount is around 900 members.

In the infancy stage, there is a developing Vienna Dads group as well. Currently organized via a Facebook Group, I’m sure they’d love some new members!

If you’re in McLean, you can join the McLean Moms Club and their closed Facebook page. Zip code requirements include moms living in 22101, 22102, 22106, 22107, 22108, 22109, 22182, 22066 and 22027. The group offers amenities similar to the Vienna Moms group as well as an online marketplace (think: very local Craigslist).

I’m currently a member of the Vienna Moms group and things I’ve loved from the group:

  • Hearing Rachel Bailey, a LCSW and parenting expert, talk about handling meltdowns from your kids and how to keep yourself in check.
  • I helped sponsor a “HandyMOM 101” event with Moss Building and Design where they brought in excerpts to talk about design trends when renovating or building your home.
  • Trying out new exercise places in town like Spin, Pure Barre and Orange Theory, usually for free!
  • The friendships! Some of my closest friends I’ve met through Vienna Moms, and some businesses too (for example, the woman who did my new logo is a fellow Vienna Mom who owns Tangible Designs).

I highly encourage you to look into the groups both for yourself as well as your kids.

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Tips on Attending the Vienna Halloween Parade

Laura Schwartz is a licensed Realtor in VA, DC and MD with McEnearney Associates in McLean. Reach the office at 703-790-9090.

On Wednesday, October 24, the town of Vienna will celebrate the 72nd annual Halloween Parade. The parade begins at 7 p.m. and starts at the corner of Branch Road SE and Maple Avenue E before ending in front of Patrick Henry Library on Center Street SW.

If you’ve never been, here are some tips to help you make the most of the experience!

  • People set out chairs and blankets early in the day to reserve their spot. If you want a front row view, I suggest you do the same. The town asks that no one does this before noon on the day of the parade and that revelers stay clear of the sidewalk and benches during the day.
  • If you have a flat bed truck, you can back into parking spaces at the shopping centers and sit high to get a better view.
  • In the parade, there are walking groups and floats with some walking groups giving out candy.
  • Some of the groups in the parade are very loud. If you have someone who is noise sensitive, consider bringing something to help them enjoy the parade without the noise.
  • There are no food vendors except for the nearby restaurants so plan to bring food if you need it or support a local restaurant.
  • Kids in costumes can walk in the parade with an adult if they want to. Participants meet at 6:30 p.m. in the parking lot at United Bank (374 Maple Avenue E).

Pro Tip: The Weichert Realtors office at 156 Maple Avenue E holds a haunted house every year from 5:45-7 p.m. They have a designated area for small kids, but they also have a scarier “Haunted Room” if you are looking for bigger thrills. They also give out candy.

The parade is one of my many favorite Vienna events! You’ll find me there with my 4 and 6 year old boys so please say hi!

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