Alexandria is really proud to be George Washington’s hometown. And our neighborhood, Old Town, Alexandria — a Washington DC neighborhood to give perspective to our non local friends — well, Old Town does the biggest George Washington Birthday Celebration anywhere.
There’s still a birthright ball at Gadsby’s Tavern — where there was an actual birthright ball for Washington that the General himself attended. The General is what locals often call America’s first president. It’s a thing.
In addition to the ball — which is awesome! — there’s a parade.
Miles actually proposed to me on this day. At King’s Jewelry. And we got married a few months later on Alexandira’s Birthday. We’re the quintessential Old Town couple. lol. Even though we snowbird and digital nomad now.
Here’s the deets of what’s happening on George Washington’s Birthday Parade Day this year . . . .
😘 Jennifer Miles & Little Mia Chou Chou
p.s. If you’re in the know around here, you know that things are pretty much the same every year for all of Old Town’s big events. But I just want to highlight that the parade is a different route this year. 😎
George Washington Birthday Parade Day Activities – February 20, 2023
Italicized is me. Normal type is direct from Visit Alexandria’s release.
Friendship Veterans Fire Engine Association Breakfast, also known as the breakfast we attended right before Mile’s took me up to King’s Jewelry and proposed! But that was when they still had it at the Hotel Monaco. We haven’t done it since they moved it out of Old Town . . .
From 8:30 to 10:30 a.m.
Meet special guests and enjoy a hearty breakfast with members of this historic association. This will be the first appearance of the day of General and Martha Washington. The guest speaker is Dr. Doug Bradburn, Director of the Mount Vernon Ladies Association, speaking about “The ‘Great Experiment’ and Ongoing Legacy of George Washington.” For more information and to purchase tickets, contact Bill Kehoe, Secretary, firstname.lastname@example.org. Location: The Westin Alexandria Hotel, 400 Courthouse Square, Alexandria. Admission is $45 per person; $400 for table of 10.
Wreath Laying Ceremony at the Tomb of the Unknown Soldier of the Revolution
We’ve never done this one. But Miles just sparked up when I mentioned just now, and said that it might be cool. So who knows, maybe this year.
Beginning at 11 a.m.
Join the Daughters of the American Revolution and the Sons of the American Revolution as they honor the soldiers of the Revolution. Location: Old Presbyterian Meeting House, 321 S. Fairfax St. FREE.
George Washington Birthday Parade
We walk in this sometimes. lol. With the Boat Club. Then we keep walking to the Club. So we’ve attended. And participated. It’s fun both ways.
This year it’s a different route. So keep that in mind. And let us know if the change in route bugs you too? I don’t know why I’m bothered by it. But Miles is too. lol. smh.
1 to 3 p.m.
Alexandria residents and visitors will line the streets of Old Town Alexandria to cheer on the oldest and largest George Washington Birthday parade in the country. The parade features drum corps, color guards, bands, community and fraternal organizations, youth groups, local merchants, city dignitaries and, of course, General Washington and Martha Washington. This year, the theme is “George Washington: The Man, The Mason, The Cornerstone of Our Republic.” The Grand Marshal will be George D. Seghers, Executive Director of the George Washington Masonic National Memorial, in honor of the 100th Anniversary of the laying of the Memorial’s cornerstone. For more information, including the new parade route, parking, maps and status, visit www.washingtonbirthday.com or email email@example.com. FREE.
Rededication of the George Washington Masonic National Memorial’s Cornerstone
I don’t really have anything to say on this. But here’s the info . . . also, it’s the reason for the change in the parade route . . .
From 3:30 to 4:30 p.m.
The George Washington Masonic National Memorial celebrates the 100th anniversary of its cornerstone ceremony. To learn more, please visit www.gwmemorial.org/pages/cornerstone. Registration is recommended but not required. Location: George Washington Masonic National Memorial. FREE.
Historic Sites Open on Parade Day
Partial addresses next to the particular historic site. If you’re using Waze the rest of the address is: Alexandria VA 22314. Also, keep in mind, that the parade route will shut down some of the roads so, be prepared for detours depending on what time you go.
Also, if I was here only for the day, I’d pick the Carlyle and Gadsby’s Tavern tours. But here’s the list . . .
Carlyle House – Open 10 a.m. to 3 p.m. – 121 N. Fairfax Street – Admission: $7 per adult; $3 per child
Christ Church – Open 10 a.m. to 1 p.m. – 118 N. Washington Street – Admission: Free
Freedom House Museum – Open 11 a.m. to 5 p.m. – 1315 Duke Street – Admission: $5 per person; free for City residents
Gadsby’s Tavern Museum – Open 11 a.m. to 5 p.m. – 134 N. Royal Street – Admission: $5 per person; free for City residents
Old Presbyterian Meeting House – Open 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. – 323 S. Fairfax Street – Admission: Free
Stabler-Leadbeater Apothecary Museum – Open 11 a.m. to 5 p.m. – 105 S. Fairfax Street – Admission: $5 per person; free for City residents