Arts & Entertainment, Events

Outdoor Festivals, Historical Happenings and More


An American Celebration at George Washington’s Mount Vernon
9 a.m. to 5 p.m.
Admission: Included with general admission ($28 for adults; $15 for youth ages 6 to 11; free for children); free for members
George Washington’s Mount Vernon

3200 Mount Vernon Memorial Highway

Salute the first commander-in-chief during Mount Vernon’s annual Independence Day event. Meet George Washington, watch made-for-daytime fireworks, and observe a moving ceremony in which people from across the world become U.S. citizens.

July 9th

Alexandria’s 273rd Birthday Celebration

6 to 9:45 p.m.

Admission: Free

Oronoco Bay Park

100 Madison Street

The City of Alexandria celebrates its 273rd birthday and the USA’s 246th birthday on Saturday, July 9, with a performance by the Alexandria Symphony Orchestra and a grand finale fireworks display at 9:30 p.m. Enjoy the return of the big birthday experience of years past with cupcakes, local vendors, live music and an extended runtime.

More Summer Events & Tours

For more summer events and activities in Alexandria, see the listings below and explore more at

Through August

First Thursdays in Del Ray
6 p.m.

Admission: Free

Various locations in Del Ray

Held the first Thursday from April to August along Mount Vernon Avenue in the Del Ray neighborhood of Alexandria, First Thursday is a series of free outdoor street festivals that bring the community together around a fun theme, benefiting a local nonprofit. This summer’s themes include “Unmask Your Superhero First Thursday,” “First Thursday Red, White & Blue,” “First Thursday Aloha Thursday” and “First Thursday Show Your Spirit,” respectively.

Sundays Through September 4th

Junior Docents at Gadsby’s Tavern Museum

Admission: $5 per adult; $3 per child (ages 5 to 12) and free for city residents

Gadsby’s Tavern Museum

134 N. Royal Street

Gadsby’s Tavern Museum’s Junior Docent Program is back with an exciting new offering this summer thanks to American Heritage Chocolate! Every Sunday, June 19 through Labor Day weekend, from 2 to 5 p.m. guests can meet Junior Docents (grades 4 and older) who will be stationed throughout the tavern. They will be sharing the history of the early America and the tavern, but also the history of chocolate, including a hands-on demonstration of historic chocolate-making in the ballroom.

Through October

Potomac Paddle Club Booze Cruises

Select Thursdays and Fridays

Admission: $75 per person

107 N. Union Street


The nation’s capital’s only passenger pedal boat, the Potomac Paddle Club, is cruising its second season from Old Town Alexandria. Passengers have the option of cruising southbound underneath the Woodrow Wilson Bridge, past the Jones Point Lighthouse and around the channel markers to National Harbor and back or cruising northbound towards either DC’s Wharf or Navy Yard before circling back to Old Town for a total cruise time of two hours. The 20-passenger vessel is powered by ten cycle stations surrounding a mahogany bar. The party is bring-your-own-food and drink and is assisted by a captain and motor if needed, allowing guests to enjoy monumental views on an intimate cruise at their own pace.

Thursdays through October

Old Town Art Walk

5 to 8 p.m.

Admission: Free

Various locations in Old Town Alexandria

Enjoy a self-guided tour of Old Town Alexandria and explore the fine art and studio crafts found in art galleries and boutique shops on the third Thursday of each month, May to October. The stroll is a great activity after an early dinner, or before enjoying a meal at one of Old Town Alexandria’s restaurants. The Old Town Art Walk is presented by the Old Town Business Association.

Through November 13th

Lives Worth Celebrating: Stories of Resilience, Rebellion and Freedom at Lee-Fendall House

Admission: $7 per person

Lee-Fendall House

614 Oronoco Street


Explore a timeline of major events related to the history of slavery in the Americas as you learn about legendary African American leaders, stories of self-liberation and family legacies including the descendants of free and enslaved African Americans who worked at the Lee-Fendall House. Part 1: “Freedom” will launch this 3-part exhibit which will delve into stories of rebellion and resilience by enslaved people in America over the next two years.

9th & 24th

Free Yoga in the Fresh Air in Old Town North

10 to 11 a.m.

Admission: Free

Montgomery Park Gazebo

901 North Royal Street


Start your day with a burst of energy from this all-level al fresco yoga class offered on select Sundays throughout the summer.

8th & 22nd 

Trivia Nights at Historic Sites
7 to 9 p.m.

Admission: $8

Lee-Fendall House Museum & Garden

614 Oronoco Street


Staff members at Carlyle House Historic Park and the Lee-Fendall House Museum combine their knowledge to create bi-weekly trivia nights throughout the summer in the beautiful gardens of the Lee-Fendall House. Test your knowledge on everything from pop culture to history.

Registration must be done in advance. Limited capacity so register early! Tickets include snacks and one complimentary drink. Additional drinks can be purchased at our bar. Teams are limited to 6 people, ages 21+ only. Each trivia night will have a different theme, ranging from literature to horror to 1990s. There will be weekly prizes for the winning team as well as a grand prize for the team that wins the most points over the entire summer.


“The Quanders” with Rohulamin Quander at Lee-Fendall House

6 p.m.

Admission: $8 per person

Lee-Fendall House Museum & Garden

614 Oronoco Street


Join us for an evening with Rohulamin Quander, founder of the Quander Historical and Educational Society, as he discusses his book The Quanders – Since 1684: An Enduring African America Family Legacy, which introduces stories that constitute the Quander Family legacy as one of the oldest consistently documented African American families in the United States.


Discovering Alexandria Architecture Walking Tour with Carlyle House
10 to 11:30 a.m.
Admission: $20 per person
Carlyle House

121 N. Fairfax Street

Alexandria has grown from a small town in the 18th century to a bustling small city in the 21st century. Join Carlyle House for a tour of Alexandria, exploring the various architectural styles that adorn the city streets and make it one of the best places to live and work. Reservations are required as space is limited. All COVID-19 procedures will be in place during this tour. Please wear comfortable shoes for this one and a half-hour guided tour. Tour is held rain or shine unless there is severe weather.


Workshops on the Waterfront

1 to 3 p.m.

Admission: Free

Torpedo Factory Art Center

105 N Union Street


Enjoy a free workshop or live demo with a Torpedo Factory Art Center artist at the Waterfront entrance of the Art Center. There will be a different project every third Saturday of the month from April to October.


Taste of Art at the Torpedo Factory Art Center

12 to 5 p.m.

Admission: $15 to $50 per person

Torpedo Factory Art Center

105 N Union Street


Cool off inside Torpedo Factory Art Center, then surprise your taste buds with delicious masterpieces from local food truck vendors, breweries, and culinary arts partners as we pair studio artists with culinary artistry. Plus: Celebrate National Ice Cream Day with a special Torpedo-inspired dessert inside the Art Center at the Waterfront, along with iced coffee and tasty beverages.


Music at the Market at Old Town North

July 21

6 to 7 p.m.

Admission: Free

Montgomery Park

901 N Royal Street

The Old Town North Community Partnership, with support from NOTICe, The Old Town North Alliance and local businesses and residents, present Music at the Market on the third Thursday of the month throughout the summer. Head to the Old Town North Farmer’s and Artisans Market to browse, pick up a bite and picnic in the park while soaking in great live music. Rain dates are June 23, July 28 and September 8.


The Science Behind Harry Potter Specialty Tours at the Apothecary Museum

10 a.m. to 8 p.m.; Tours offered every 30 minutes on the hour and half-hour; last tour starts at 8 p.m.

Admission: $8 per person

The Stabler-Leadbeater Apothecary Museum

105-107 S Fairfax Street


In honor of Harry’s birthday on July 31st, the Apothecary Museum is offering a special guided tour for families (and adults who missed their Hogwarts letter) that will explore the old Apothecary and the historic Muggle medicines that inspired the Herbology and Potions of Harry’s wizarding world.

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