It’s Beginning to Look a Lot Like Christmas
It is Thanksgiving Weekend and that means many of you will be waiting in lines Black Friday and Small Business Saturday to get holiday bargains. But when you tire of the holiday shopping crowds, there are plenty of other things to do in the DMV this weekend.
Metro will take a short break from scheduled maintenance over the four-day Thanksgiving holiday weekend. On Friday, rail and bus service will operate on a regular weekday schedule with normal fare and parking rates in effect. All Metrorail trains will operate with six cars. Regular weekend schedules will be in effect on Saturday and Sunday.
Once again, ZooLights decks the National Zoo out in environmentally friendly LED lights for the holidays. More than 500,000 lights will be used on everything from light-up elephants to twinkling floral displays. There will also be live performances from local artists, plenty of food and gift-worthy goods for sale.
Through Jan 1 from 5-9 p.m. at the National Zoo, 3001 Connecticut Ave. NW. Admission is FREE!
Winter Lights Festival
The City of Gaithersburg’s Winter Lights Festival is welcoming visitors for its 19th season. The 3.5 mile drive through Seneca Creek State Park takes you past more than 365 illuminated displays and 65 animated vignettes that light up the night. Themed areas include Winter Woods, Teddy Bear Land, Victorian Village, the North Pole, and more. Proceeds from the festival benefit local charities.
Through Dec. 31 from 6-9 p.m. Sunday through Thursday and 6-10 p.m. Friday and Saturday at Seneca Creek State Park, 11950 Clopper Road, Gaithersburg. Admission is $12 per car Monday-Thursday and $15 per car Friday and Saturday.
Holiday tree lighting and singalong
The main attraction at Reston Town Center’s all-day holiday celebration is the holiday tree lighting and singalong at 6 p.m. Other festivities include ice skating and a Gingerbread Mile for kids at 8 a.m., the Reston holiday parade at 11 a.m., visits and photos with Santa and a mini train ride beginning at 12:30 p.m. and carriage rides beginning at 6:30 p.m.
Nov. 28 beginning at 8 a.m at Reston Town Center, 11900 Market St., Reston. Admission is FREE!
Downtown Holiday Market
Black Friday marks the return of outdoor shopping, music, entertainment and more in Downtown D.C. at the 10th annual Downtown Holiday Market, produced by the Downtown D.C. Business Improvement District. At this year’s outdoor marketplace, located on F Street between 7th & 9th Streets NW, shoppers will find more than 150 exhibitors and artisans offering a diverse array of quality items including fine art, crafts, glass, jewelry, pottery, photography and clothing. The market’s festive atmosphere will be complemented by decorative accents and lighting, tasty treats, hot beverages and live musical entertainment. Highlights include acoustic folk rock from The 19th Street Band, gypsy jazz from the Hot Club of DC, updated classics from Ian Walters & Friends, holiday and contemporary from DuPont Brass and many more.
Through Dec. 23 from noon-8 p.m. daily on F Street NW between Seventh and Ninth Streets. Admission is FREE!
Cady’s Alley Holiday Bazaar
The popular pop-up holiday bazaar is now open for the festive season in Cady’s Alley. For the second year, the 8,000-square foot Cady’s Alley Holiday Bazaar indoor open marketplace features a collection of five up-and-coming online fashion and accessory brands including Pico Vela, Kim Schalk, Ikkon, Elaine B Jewelry and Stylecable. On Thursday from 7-9 p.m., the holiday emporium will host a free launch party to meet the faces behind the retailers.
Through Jan 4 at 3330 Cady’s Alley NW in Georgetown’s Design District. The bazaar is open 11 a.m.-7 p.m. Tuesday through Thursday, 11 a.m-8 p.m. Friday and Saturday, 11 a.m.-7 p.m. Sunday and closed Monday. Admission is FREE!
Small Is the New Black
Head to the DMV’s “shop small” headquarters for Small Business Saturday. More than 30 independent Alexandria boutiques will offer special promotions, such as merchandise discounts, gifts with purchase, complimentary services, treats and/or festive activities for shoppers to enjoy. Alexandria was recently selected as one of three cities, along with San Francisco and New York, for the “Shop Small” street banner program, encouraging shoppers to “Find Something Extraordinary” this holiday season. The street lamp banners appear along King Street and Mount Vernon Avenue, the city’s two largest retail corridors, where 80 percent of the retailers and restaurants are independently or regionally owned. Holiday shoppers will be rewarded for their “shop local” loyalty. Starting on Small Business Saturday, shoppers may get a free Rebecca Minkoff designer “Shop Small” canvas tote bag when they bring two receipts from local Alexandria shops to the Alexandria Visitors Center, 221 King St.–one bag per customer while supplies last.
Nov. 28 in the Old Town and Del Rey areas of Alexandria. Admission is FREE!
Made in D.C. Marketplace
For the second year in a row, D.C. Brau is celebrating Small Business Saturday with a daytime Made in D.C. Marketplace at is Bladensburg Road brewery. The Fishermen Band will provide the soundtrack as you sip pints, fill growlers and shop local vendors like Crunkcakes D.C., Jerkface Artisanal Beef Jerky and Junius Cold Brew Coffee Co. D.C. Brau is also promising to unveil a surprise, which we bet involves beer.
Nov. 29 from noon-5 p.m. at D.C. Brau Brewing Co., 3178B Bladensburg Road NW. Admission is FREE!
A Very Electric Christmas
Lightwire Theater’s holiday show looks like what would happen if the ZooLights display at the National Zoo came to life. A Very Electric Christmas has a plot, but all you really need to know is that his electroluminescent spectacular is performed completely in the dark and features dancing toy soldiers, caroling worms and a soundtrack filled with holiday classics.
Nov. 29 and 3 and 8 p.m. at the Music Center at Strathmore, 5301 Tuckerman Lane, North Bethesda. Tickets are $25-$42.
Editor-in-Chief Mark Heckathorn is a journalist, movie buff and foodie. He oversees DC on Heels editorial operations as well as strategic planning and staff development. Reach him with story ideas or suggestions at dcoheditor (at) gmail (dot) com.