November is a transitional month for many – a change in scenery, a dip in weather, and a shift from pumpkins to turkeys to early holiday decorations. But what doesn’t change in November in Fairfax County is the multitude of events, activities, and entertainment options happening all month long.

Here’s a guide on how to spend November in Fairfax County.


Early Fall Reminders

Cox Farms pumpkin patch
Image courtesy Cox Farms

If you still need to find pumpkins for your November holiday get-togethers, don’t overlook these pumpkin patches. Several of these close the first weekend of November though – so be mindful.

The leaves are starting to carpet the ground, but that doesn’t mean there aren’t still beautiful foliage-viewing spots to explore. Check out these 9 leaf-peeping locations, these great stops along the George Washington Memorial Parkway, these pretty scenic drives, or see how you can pair some scenic backdrops with a visit to one of the area’s best attractions.


Veterans Day Events and the Grand Opening of the National Museum of the U.S. Army

Army MuseumPhoto courtesy National Museum of the U.S. Army/Duane Lempke

Breaking news: the much-anticipated National Museum of the United States Army is officially opening its doors on Veterans Day: November 11, 2020. Be sure to get your timed tickets online ahead of time - they're completely free. Otherwise, there are a number of ways to honor, celebrate, and give thanks to our nation's veterans and military personnel this Veterans Day weekend. Here’s where to celebrate Veterans Day in Washington, DC and Northern Virginia.


Holiday Festivities

We all know the craft stores and department stores have been itching to get their Christmas decorations up for weeks now, but in Fairfax County at least, early November brings the openings of several annual holiday traditions. Here are several to mark on your calendar:

Light Shows

Meadowlark's Winter Walk of LightsImage courtesy NOVA Parks

Light up your November by visiting one of the area's two magnificent light shows run by NOVA Parks. Get a full breakdown here. 

Meadowlark’s Winter Walk of Lights – begins November 11

Bull Run Regional Park’s Festival of Lights – begins November 6


Ice Skating

Reston Ice Skating

Lace up those skates at one of the area ice rinks. Reston's famed ice skating pavilion will open November 6, 2020 - stay tuned for updates on operational changes for this year. You can also skate at Mount Vernon Ice Arena and Fairfax Ice Arena


Thanksgiving Ideas


Virtual Turkey Trots

Turkey Trots
Image courtesy Fort Belvoir Turkey Trot Virtual Race

Burn off some of those (pre or post!) Thanksgiving calories at one of these fun virtual 5k runs. 

America's Turkey Trot - compete anytime between now and 11/26/20

Fort Belvoir's Turkey Trot - compete anytime between 11/1/20 and 11/30/20

Tysons Rotary Turkey Trot - compete anytime between 11/14/20 and 11/22/20

Vienna Turkey Trot - compete anytime between 11/24/20 and 11/28/20

Reston Turkey Day 5K - compete anytime between 11/26/20 and 11/29/20

Fairfax Turkey Trot - compete anytime between 11/26/20 and 12/03/20

Bonus: not so much a trot, but a kid-friendly Turkey Walk, hosted by the Fairfax County Park Authority at Ellanor C. Lawrence Park on 11/28/20. Kids will learn about the habits of wild turkey's and look for signs of the bird at this local park. You can also learn about turkeys at the Tricky Turkeys event at Green Spring Gardens on 11/25/20.

Thanksgiving Dinners To-Go

Thanksgiving - Turkey

Several restaurants in the area offer fully catered Thanksgiving dinners to-go. Browse our list of Fairfax County restaurants here to see if any of these suit your needs. Stay tuned for an upcoming post detailing some offerings from our local restaurateurs. 

 

Holiday Shopping

Tysons Corner CenterImage courtesy Tysons Corner Center

Holiday shopping madness officially begins in November. Lucky for you, Fairfax County has a TON of options to help you find that perfect gift whether you want to be one with the crowds or avoid them altogether. Looking for something truly unique? Shop local at these unique gift shops to find one-of-a-kind presents that'll stand out from the bunch - a great option to support Small Business Saturday! Need other ideas? Why not gift one of these 5 Local Authors' Books or grab a bag of locally-roasted coffee beans at one of these coffee shops. You can also pre-order some delicious chocolate gift boxes from these Fairfax County chocolate shops Or, head to the Town of Vienna's Shop and Stroll to experience live, socially-distant entertainment and community while you shop! 

 

We know that this year looks a little different than most years. But there's never been a better time to reflect on what we're thankful for. Share what you're thankful for in the comments below and let us know if there's something we missed here that you're looking forward to this month. Find us on social media at @VisitFairfax and #FXVA