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 

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

This Veteran's Day, Fairfax County is the ideal base camp for exploring the military experience. To truly get a sense of their history, culture - and sacrifice - we suggest you take a trip to visit the attractions, museums, and memorials that tell their story. The state-of-the-art National Museum of the United States Army is brand new and their free timed-entry tickets are in hot demand. (Here's a sneak peek at some of the exhibits you can see there.) And with the National Museum of the Marine Corps and US Marine Corps Memorial, the United States Air Force Memorial, and the United States Navy Memorial and Naval Heritage Center - there's always a story to be told. 

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

LuminoCity FestivalImage courtesy LuminoCity Festival

Light up your November by visiting one of the area's magnificent light shows! NEW this year in Fairfax County is the LuminoCity Light Festival, an immersive wonderland of larger-than-life light art sculptures at Roer's Zoofari. Also, be sure to check out these beloved favorites that draw crowds each and every year: 

Meadowlark’s Winter Walk of Lights –  November 11, 2021 through Sunday, January 2, 2022

Bull Run Regional Park’s Festival of Lights – November 11, 2021 through January 2, 2022


Ice Skating

Reston Ice Skating

Lace up those skates and get moving at one of the area ice rinks. Reston's famed ice skating pavilion will open this November - 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


Turkey Trots

Turkey Trots
 

Burn off some of those (pre or post!) Thanksgiving calories at one of these fun runs and be sure to check back for more coming soon:

Vienna Turkey Trot - November 21st, 2021 at 8AM
9th Annual Fairfax Turkey Trot - November 25th, 2021 at 9AM
Pacers Fairfax Turkey Trot - November 25th, 2021 at 9AM

 

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 browse the shelves at these indie book shops. 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
 

Special Events

Kean Stage Presents Lightwire Theater with "A Very Electric Holiday"
Photo Courtesy Lightwire Theater

There are a few extra special events this month you won’t want to miss. Here’s a breakdown:

28th Annual Northern Virginia Christmas Market at Dulles Expo Center – November 12-14

Lightwire Theater’s A Very Electric Holiday at George Mason University's Center for the Arts - November 28

The Elf on a Shelf: The Christmas Musical at Capital One Hall - November 28

For a full calendar of special happenings, be sure to check out our events page.

 

We know that this year still 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