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Happy Holidays


Capture the Spirit

Ho! Ho! Ho! Have we got a sleigh full of holly, jolly holiday activities for you this year! We've made the list below and checked it twice.  Whether you've been naughty or nice this year, you can make your case to Santa in person in the parks!

Looking for unique gifts to give? Stop by Audrey Moore RECenter's annual holiday crafts show to peruse handmade items from over 120 artisans. Kids can get in on the spirit of giving during special children's shopping programs at Frying Pan.

What's the holiday season without festive lights? Sully Historic Site's past will be illuminated by candlelight, and the tree will be decorated in Victorian splendor all month. Whichever programs and events you attend, we wish you the happiest of holidays!

 Saturday, December 5
Children's Holiday Shopping
Children get to do their own gift shopping during the annual Children's Holiday Shopping Day at Frying Pan Farm Park from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. Volunteers help children shop for everybody on their holiday list. The Country Store stocks many unique items in all price ranges. Free wrapping assures surprises for family and friends. No reservations are required. Meet at the Old Floris School House. For more information, call 703-437-9101.

 Saturday, December 5
Winter Wreath WorkshopClick to Register with Parktakes Online
Create a beautiful, winter wreath after Green Spring staff demonstrate the dazzling possibilities. Greens, forms, ribbon and cones are included in the $25 supply fee. The Green Spring Gardens workshop runs from 10 a.m. to noon, and is designed for those 14 and older. The cost is $38. Please register for both the program and supply fee. For more information, call 703-642-5173.

 Saturday, December 5
Holidays on the Home FrontClick to Register with Parktakes Online
Growing up in the WWII era was hard. Families sent care packages and letters to soldiers, planted victory gardens and helped ration food through creative recipes. Plant a seed for a victory garden, write a letter to a soldier, make a 1940s-era ornament and learn about ration recipes at this event at Ellanor C. Lawrence Park from 2 to 4 p.m. The cost is $12 per person, and the program is designed for those ages eight to adult. Children must be accompanied by a registered adult. For more information, call 703-631-0013.

 Saturday-Sunday, December 5-6
Burke Lake Winter Wonderland Click to Register with Parktakes Online
Celebrate the season with a train ride on the Holiday Express at Burke Lake's Winter Wonderland. Enjoy a tour on the U.S.S. Reindeer, take a spin on the Carolers Carousel, experience the Snowman's Wagon Ride, play Gingerbread Man's Golf, or warm yourself by the fire and toast s'mores. Visit with Santa, enjoy hot chocolate, spiced cider and candy canes. Passes can be purchased in advance for $15 through December 4; $20 at the gate until 2 p.m. Buy one or more items at a time on the day of the event until 2:30 p.m. or while supplies last. Call 703- 323-6600.

 Saturday-Sunday, December 5-6
38th Annual Holiday Arts and Crafts Show
Shop at one of Northern Virginia's largest holiday shows, and find the perfect gift for everyone on your list at Audrey Moore RECenter. Top-quality handmade arts and crafts will be offered by nearly 120 of the area's finest artisans. Admission is $2 per person; children ages 12 and under are free. Door prizes will be awarded. Shop from 9 a.m. to 4 p.m. on Saturday and from 10 a.m. to 3:30 p.m. on Sunday. For information, call 703-321-7081.

 Sunday, December 6
Christmas at the FarmClick to Register with Parktakes Online
Enjoy a special holiday visit and take a wagon ride with Santa through the woods and fields at Frying Pan Farm Park. Activities for those two and older include a holiday craft, cookie decorating and puppet show. The hour-long program runs at 11:30 a.m., 1:30 p.m. and 3:30 p.m. each day. The cost is $8 per person. Children must be accompanied by a registered adult. Dress for the weather. For more information, please call 703-437-9101.

 Sunday, December 6
Deck the HallsClick to Register with Parktakes Online
Tour the house at Sully Historic Site with a focus on holiday decorations -- the history, style and materials. Create your own wreath to take home using cuttings from the historic property, and before you leave, enjoy hot cider and cookies. The program is designed for those ages 12 to adult and runs twice – from 11 a.m. to 1 p.m. and from 2 to 4 p.m. The cost is $20 per person. For more information, call 703-437-1794.

 Sunday, December 6
Making Nature Gifts WorkshopClick to Register with Parktakes Online
Parents can enjoy shopping at the mall from 1:30 to 3:30 p.m. while their children, ages five to ten, make gifts and wrap them for their families at Hidden Oaks Nature Center. The kids will also enjoy a range of activities from meeting live animals, to watching 16mm movies, to seeing a puppet show. Bring a snack. The supply fee is included in the $15 cost per child. For more information, call 703-941-1065.

 Sunday, December 6
Gardeners' Holiday: Puppet Show and Open HouseClick to Register with Parktakes Online
Treat yourself to a day of holiday fun at Green Spring Gardens from noon to 4 p.m. There's a little something for everyone: See holiday decorations and seasonal displays, enjoy holiday music, stroll the gift shop and more. Please register in advance for the puppet shows at 1 p.m. and 3 p.m. The cost of the show is $3 per person. This festive day is for gardeners of all ages, individuals and families. For more information, call 703-642-5173.

 Saturday, December 12
Santa at the Mill
Enjoy old-fashioned family holiday fun at Colvin Run Mill. Visit Santa in the mill, and see the Christmas tree trimmed with Victorian decorations. Join the costumed 49th Virginia Volunteer Infantry caroling around a bonfire. Roast marshmallows, and make a family craft. This event runs from 3 to 6 p.m. and is ideal for those ages three to adult. The cost is $5 per person, and no reservations are required. For more information, call 703-759-2771.

 Saturday, December 12
Holidays at Walney FarmClick to Register with Parktakes Online
Celebrate the winter holidays with the Machen family at Walney Farm at Ellanor C. Lawrence Park. Learn about the gifts and foods of an 1850 Virginia farm. Create your own historic holiday ornament. Enjoy hot apple cider and baked treats. This holiday celebration runs from 1 to 2:30 p.m. and is for those two to adult. The cost is $8 per person. For more information, call 703-631-0013.

 Saturday, December 12
Caroling Wagon Ride & CampfireClick to Register with Parktakes Online
Oh, Cedar Tree! Join us in song and exploration on a wagon ride through the cedars at Ellanor C. Lawrence Park. These evergreen trees are a part of Virginia holiday festivities and wildlife winter survival. Warm up and roast marshmallows at the campfire. Wagon rides depart at 2:30, 3 and 3:30 p.m. This event is appropriate for participants age two to adult. The cost is $3, and children must be accompanied by a registered adult. For more information, call 703-631-0013.

 Saturday, December 12
Holiday Horse Drawn Hayrides & Campfire Click to Register with Parktakes Online
Enjoy holiday music and merriment on a horse-drawn wagon ride through Lake Accotink Park. Warm up with seasonal treats available for purchase at our snack bar, and settle in to share stories around a toasty campfire. Also visit with Santa and tell him what's on your wish list. Dress for the weather and plan on a brisk walk from the parking lot. Horse-drawn hayride seating is limited. A tractor-pulled wagon will be available once seats on the horse-drawn wagon are sold out. Hayrides start at noon and run every 20 minutes until 3 p.m. The fee of $12 per person includes a seat on the horse-drawn wagon and a visit with Santa in the pavilion. Children two and under are free with a paying adult. For more information, please call 703-569-3464.

 Saturday, December 12
Civil War by CandlelightClick to Register with Parktakes Online
Experience a Civil War Christmas as Confederate soldiers cook dinner in the field and fire the Christmas guns at Sully Historic Site. Family members five and older can enjoy music by Evergreen Shade, make a 19th century holiday decoration, and sample hot cider and homemade cookies. Tours begin at 4:45 with a new tour starting every 15 minutes. The last tour starts at 7 p.m. Please register online. The cost is $10 per person. For more information, call 703-437-1794.

 Saturday, December 12
Holiday Ice Skating Show Returns to Mt. Vernon REC
Watch talented figure skaters show off their moves at Mount Vernon RECenter's Holiday Ice Show. The RECenter's most experienced skaters, as well as beginners of all ages, will perform from 11:30 a.m. to 1:30 p.m. Admission is free for this popular neighborhood event. Mount Vernon's ice rink is the only publicly-owned ice arena in the area and plays host to public skating sessions, hockey leagues, camps and "cool" parties For more information about this facility, please contact Carl Kirtley at 703-768-3224.

 Saturday, December 12
Ride the Holiday Train at Lake FairfaxClick to Register with Parktakes Online
Take a ride on Resources Railroad Engine #62. Santa stops by the park to visit with you. See the lighted Christmas tree and inflatable seasonal decorations, and make a holiday project to take home. Gather around the campfire to hear holiday music and enjoy warm drinks and treats from the food vendor. This event runs from noon to 6 p.m. and is ideal for those ages three to adult. The cost is $10 per person. For more information about this program , call 703-471-5414.

 Saturday, December 12
Family Fun: Holiday Craft PartyClick to Register with Parktakes Online
Join us from 1 to 3 p.m. for an afternoon of holiday crafts and activities in our festive Horticulture Center at Green Spring Gardens. Make custom greeting cards and create nature-inspired ornaments to give or display. Listen to stories of celebrations around the world as you enjoy tea and cookies. This party is for participants age five to adult. The cost is $12 per person. All participants must register. For more information, about this program please call 703-642-5173.

 Sunday, December 13
Christmas at the FarmClick to Register with Parktakes Online
Enjoy a special holiday visit and take a wagon ride with Santa through the woods and fields at Frying Pan Farm Park. Activities for those two and older include a holiday craft, cookie decorating and puppet show. The hour-long program runs at 11:30 a.m., 1:30 p.m. and 3:30 p.m. each day. The cost is $8 per person. Children must be accompanied by a registered adult. Dress for the weather. For more information, please call 703-437-9101.

 Sunday, December 13
Candlelight Tea: A Plum Pudding Christmas
Come to Green Spring Gardens and learn about the famous and often misunderstood Christmas pudding – also known as plum or figgy pudding – that generations of carolers have demanded. Enjoy a serving of this ancient and delicious tradition of the British Christmas table and take home a festive favor bag. The program runs from 4:30 to 6 p.m. and includes a traditional English tea served in the 1784 historic house. This program is suited to those ages 13 to adult. The cost is $45 per person. Reservations are required. For more information, call 703-941-7987.

 Sunday, December 13
Christmas in the Time of Jane AustenClick to Register with Parktakes Online
See how the traditional 12 days of Christmas were celebrated at the turn of the 19th century at Sully Historic Site. Elegant dancing, rich foods and travel made the season exciting. Learn the latest dance steps, make a holiday decoration, and take home a recipe for a "great cake." See cooking in the open hearth and sample sugar cakes and cider. These tours are designed for participants age five to adult. Tours begin at 4:45 with a new tour starting every 15 minutes. The last begins at 7 p.m. Please register online. The cost is $10 per person. For more information, call 703-437-1794.

 Sunday, December 13
Workshop: Pinecone WreathClick to Register with Parktakes Online
Fashion a wreath of mixed pinecones and nuts at Green Spring Gardens that will add rustic charm for the holidays and last for years. Designer Chuck Mason will lead you through the project from 2 to 4 p.m. and show you how to display the wreath indoors or on your front door. The cost of this workshop only for adults is $38, and there is a $25 fee for supplies. Please register for the program and supply fee. For more information, please call 703-642-5173.

 Saturday, December 19
65th Anniversary Party and Puppet Show
Our 65th anniversary wraps up with FREE a Holiday Party and Puppet Show at the Visitor Center at Frying Pan Farm Park, beginning at 10 a.m. See the "Crooning with the Critters" interactive musical puppet show at 10:45 a.m., pet live farm animals outside, meet officials and enjoy hot cocoa, cider and cookies inside. The event is free however donations will support Frying Pan Farm Park summer camp scholarships. For more information, call 703-324-8662.

 Saturday, December 19
Victorian Candlelight TourClick to Register with Parktakes Online
Participants five and older will enjoy Victorian-era traditions as you meet Sully's Santa, hear a reading of A Visit from St. Nicholas and see the Christmas tree decorated according to an 1885 memory. Make a tree decoration based on a Victorian original, see Sully's own puppet show and enjoy cider and sugar cakes. Tours begin at 4:45 with a new tour starting every 15 minutes. The last tour begins at 7 p.m. The cost is $10 per person. Please register online. For more information, call 703-437-1794.

 Wednesday, December 30
Holiday Concert – IONA
1 p.m. and 2 p.m. Ages 5-adult. One of the top rated pan-Celtic groups in the world, IONA treats its audience to high energy entertainment featuring Scottish fiddling, percussion, vocals and dancing. House tour included. Refreshments served in the 18th century kitchen. Limited seating. Purchase tickets online.

Sully Historic Site

Frying Pan Farm Park

Family Fun

Colvin Run Mill

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