Here on vacation? Business? A little bit of both? Even if you’re a resident looking to break cabin fever, Fairfax County always has something to do. With any luck, March will be the start of a greener season. This means more time for Festivals & Special Events, Nature & Parks, and History -- all with a little extra Vitamin D and crisp early springtime air.
Festivals & Special Events
In the DC area, no March is complete without St. Patrick’s Day or the National Cherry Blossom Festival.
St. Patrick’s Day
Check out all the area happenings to celebrate St Paddy’s Day. Bring your chairs and blankets to King Street for the annual Ballyshaners parade in Old Town Alexandria on March 2!
National Cherry Blossom Festival
Image courtesy Steve Piacente
Take a peek for yourself from March 20 til April 14. Special events for the National Cherry Blossom Festival kick off March 23 with the opening ceremony at Warner Theatre. For a complete list of events, check out our Cherry Blossom page, and don’t forget to check the National Park Service's Peak Bloom Watch before you leave! #BloomWatch #CherryBlossomDC
Image courtesy of Central Fairfax Chamber of Commerce
I’m always looking for a deal and that’s why I love Restaurant Week. What a great way to try something new for such an awesome deal; $20 three-course lunches and $35 three-course dinners. Below is a list of participating City restaurants:
You could even do both and get more bang for your buck while you can! Check out the 7th Annual Restaurant Week in Falls Church from March 25–31. #FCRESTAURANTWEEK
Needlework at Woodlawn
If you’re like me and have a place in your heart for needlework crafts, be sure to visit Woodlawn Estate in southern Fairfax County for their 56th Annual Needlework Show & Sale. The show and sale is open all month long, with the exception of Tuesdays. I think one of my favorite parts about this event is the fact that Woodlawn embraces a diverse community of artists. When artists are encouraged to express their trueness, captivating art is created.
Woodlawn has done an outstanding job at putting together a diverse selection of events and programs – everything from “Introduction to Punch Needle Embroidery Workshop” to “Embroidering with Buttercream with Mayra Garcia.” Added bonus: many of these events are included with show admission, so book fast before they fill up. I know I am!
The DC Big Flea Antiques Market comes into town every two months and sets up shop at the Dulles Expo Center. I personally have always loved flea and antique markets since I was young. I grew up in Michigan, where the markets were way less glamorous, but my grandma would scoop me up for the day and we’d walk for hours while we munched on fresh cinnamon-sugar covered pecans.
There’s always something in these markets that give you nostalgia, and don’t we all love that feeling? Check it out on March 2-3. And if you miss this one, don't worry - it will be back!
Logo courtesy of Super Pet Expo
Shop, play, adopt or educate at Dulles Expo Center’s Super Pet Expo. This event only comes once a year, so be sure to show up with your furry friends! Leashed, friendly pets are always welcome. Even if you don’t have a pupper, it’s the perfect place to talk to an expert about the safe adoption process (which in my opinion is the best way to go, adopt a rescue!). Join the furry fun March 16-18.
Nature & Parks
There have already been a few nice days in February (Virginia and her crazy weather), and considering Punxsutawney Phil couldn’t find his shadow, I like to think it’s time for Spring. My favorite part of warmer weather is getting to stroll the trails that Fairfax County offers. We have so many traversable and unique parks (that, in my opinion, are very well maintained – and that’s coming from someone very afraid of bugs and creepy crawlies!). Here are some of my recommendations for hiking this March:
- Huntley Meadows Park – great hike for watching wildlife, HMP is home to wetlands/streams, meadows/grassland, and forest. Trails here for people, pets, and bikes.
- Burke Lake Park – one of the 10 best fitness trails in the nation according to the American Hiking Society. 4.7 miles of trail running along gorgeous Burke Lake.
Image courtesy of Don Sweeney/Fairfax County Park Authority
- Great Falls Park – always and forever a fan favorite National Park.
- Ellanor C Lawrence Park – my personal favorite, I visited ECLP last year and was in awe of how much land is here and protected right off I-66 and Route 28 -- 650 ACRES! You may even be able to spot deer, fox, turkey, and unique birds. Be sure to stop in the visitors center and check out their many weekly events held for the youngins.
Image courtesy of Ellanor C. Lawrence Park
- Frying Pan Farm Park – A friend let me in on this hidden gem. Many people think FPFP is just a farm park for kids. Turns out, their modest loop trail leads to a small waterfall -- who knew?!
Image courtesy of Live and Let Hike
Women’s History Month
Every year, March is designated Women’s History Month. So what can we do in Fairfax County that honors women’s contributions to American History? I’ve got you covered.
- The Smithsonian's National Air and Space Museum Steven F. Udvar-Hazy Center is hosting a Women in Aviation and Space afternoon event that you’ll want to take the whole family to. It’s even a great trip for Girl Scout Troops. What an achievement it was in history to fly a plane in the sky and a rocket to the moon. Many brave and bright women got the chance to get off the ground – learn more on March 9 from 10:00am – 3:00pm.
Image courtesy of Smithsonian's National Air and Space Museum Steven F. Udvar-Hazy Center
- Fairfax County's very own Lake Anne Brew House is an advocate for industry-leading women, especially in a predominantly male business like brewing. The brewettes have created a series of beer called “She’s Crafty” that will be featured March 7-9 for International Women’s Weekend. Come support the women on Lake Anne!
Logo courtesy of Lake Anne Brew House
- Fort Ward Museum & Historic Site is recognizing Women’s History Month by creating activities and displays that incorporate the life of women during the time of the Civil War. The Civil War Women’s Day event comes complete with civilian reenactors and hands-on activities to share an unforgettable storytelling experience. Join the fun on March 23 from 11:00am to 3:00pm.
Art courtesy of BBC
What are you most looking forward to this March? Tell us in the comments below or join the conversation on social media using #FXVA and @VisitFairfax.