Spring has sprung. We’ve got Cherry Blossoms. And we can break out our white jeans, dip into our pastel sweaters and matching Jack Rogers. Yet you can still wear all black, leopard shoes, and a trench. I love springtime in DC!
All the beautiful Cherry Blossoms. And all of the excitement around all the beautiful Cherry Blossoms. And Old Town blooms too. Home sweet home!
Last year we were in Las Vegas snowbirding. It was our first time, and we didn’t quite get the memo that you were supposed to go home in the spring. We know better now. And I’ll say, now that I’ve seen spring again, I realized how much I missed being home for it!
Speaking of home. So much spring cleaning is happening in our home. Miles and I have been singing the symphony of “too much stuff” since we got married. And we both had nice stuff — no awful wagon wheel coffee table between the two of us. So getting rid of stuff was/is a challenge. I’ll share more on the story of our stuff later. But for now, just know that the spring cleaning is making the house, Miles, Mia, and me feel fantastic!
So in the middle of our collective spring cleaning. Here’s some activities and events to reward yourself with. I’ve curated them with lots of love from across the internet-land. Happy memory making, beauties!
p.s. My musings are in italics. Visit Alexandria’s descriptions in taupe.
p.p.s. If you’re just seeing this post and the event has already passed. Have no fear! It will probably happen again next year.
April Memory Making
This month, Ive broken this curation down by cherry Bloisso specific stuff, then all the other faboulous April stuff. Happy memory making! Enjoy!
Cherry Blossom Specific Stuff
Cherry Blossom Water Taxi to The Wharf
If we were going to do it this year. This is how we would do it!
Daily, beginning March 18, 2023
Departures beginning at 1:30 p.m.; check website for details
Admission: Starting at $23 one-way; $37 round-trip for adults
Departs from the Alexandria Marina, 1 Cameron St., Alexandria, VA 22314
Cruise from Old Town Alexandria to Washington, D.C., to enjoy the famous cherry blossoms. City Cruises Potomac Water Taxi offers a 25-minute direct water taxi from Old Town to The Wharf development in D.C. From the dock at The Wharf, it is a 10-minute walk to the cherry blossoms at the Tidal Basin. The water taxi docks at the Transit Pier, 950 Wharf St. SW, near the Tidal Basin, the National Mall, Hains Point and a Capital Bikeshare station.
The Torpedo Factory’s Cherry Blossom Jubilee
The Late Shift Art Night: Cherry Blossom Jubilee
This sounds like fun!
April 14, 2023, from 7 to 10 p.m.
Torpedo Factory Art Center, 105 N. Union St., Alexandria, VA 22314
In partnership with the National Cherry Blossom Festival, Torpedo Factory Art Center invites visitors to explore the celebrated cherry blossoms through art demonstrations, music and interactive activities among three floors of open studios and galleries.
Cherry Blossom Guided Tours with Pedego Electric Bikes Alexandria
Bicycles are not our thing. So we would never do this. But I’m including it here anyway in case it tickles your fancy.
March 20 to April 16, 2023 (or when the cherry blossoms are in bloom)
Departures at 10:30 a.m. and 2:30 p.m. on weekends; by appointment on weekdays
Admission: $69 per bike ($10 for passenger riders on cargo or tandem bikes)
Pedego Alexandria, 210 North Lee St., Alexandria, VA 22314
Join a three-hour guided tour from Old Town Alexandria to the cherry blossoms in Washington, D.C., including a ride through the blossoms around East Potomac Park. The views of the blossoms from a Pedego are fantastic, and you don’t have to fight traffic or find a place to park downtown. Tours will run as long as there are blooms on the cherry blossom trees. Group tour sizes will be limited. You must be at least 14 years old to ride alone. Weekend tours fill up quickly, so contact Pedego early to make your reservations. Call 571-312-5168 or email email@example.com.
Other Great April Events & Activities
90th Old Town Alexandria Historic Homes & Gardens Tour
This annual tour, unlike the other homes tours really focuses on the flowers in addition to the beautifully decorated homes! You get gardens and plants and centerpieces. Oh my! Also, look cute. Think: comfortable shoes for walking, and afternoon tea attire. People will range from Chanel to J.Crew. Be put together — athleisure for this event is a no-no. Lastly, Afternoon Tea at the recently opened Lady Camilla, or small plates along the water’s edge might be a nice idea after.
Saturday, April 15, 2023, from 10 a.m. to 4:00 p.m.
Admission: $55 per person
Begins at St. Paul’s Episcopal Church Rectory, 411 Duke St., Alexandria, VA 22314
Overlooking the Potomac and within minutes of our nation’s capital, Alexandria was the third city in the country to create a historic district to preserve its downtown. Part of Historic Garden Week in Virginia, this walking tour includes private townhomes and secluded gardens located along the tree lined streets of the historic district, boutique shopping, and fine dining, which are all just steps away. In addition, the tour ticket allows access to two Garden Club of Virginia restoration projects, George Washington’s Mount Vernon Estate and Gardens and Green Springs Gardens, along with other local places of interest. Tickets are available via Eventbrite.com
Garden Day Tours at Carlyle House
I love touring Carlyle House. It’s beautiful and grand. Yet somehow so intimate. And we always love walking by the gardens on our way out and about Old Town.
Saturday, April 15, 2023, from 11 a.m. to 3 p.m.
Admission: Free, suggested $5 donation towards garden restoration
Carlyle House, 121 N. Fairfax St., Alexandria, VA 22314
Enjoy open house-style tours of the garden at Carlyle House as part of the Historic Garden Week in Virginia. Experts will be on site to answer questions about working within the confines of a historic garden in an ever-changing climate. Tours are continuous throughout the day. No reservations are required.
Clean-up Day at the Old Dominion Boat Club
This is actually a lot of fun! And it’s exactly how it sounds. You’re cleaning-up the building and grounds. Too include the docks. Everything from power-wasing to planting flowers. It’s a great thing to attend especially if you’re a new member. It’s a little more fuffy now that we’re in the new building professional staff. But it’s still a great chance to bond. At the old clubhouse I cleaned the catering kitchen with my friend Lauren. We became really tight — Miles and I even got married on her boat!
Saturday, 15 April, morning time
Old Dominion Boat Club • 0 Prince Street, Alexandria, VA 22314
Just show up in an outfit you don’t mind getting dirty. Also, bring garden gloves if that’s what you crave doing. Actually, work gloves in general are a good idea! Member’s only.
Sock Burning at the Old Dominion Boat Club
Almost always the evening following the clean-up is the sock during party that officially kicks off boating season. The lore is that the sailers wear the same socks all winter and come spring it’s time to burn ‘um. You can now pop your bare feat into your boat shoes for the season. There may have been some other things that burned in that cauldron over the years. But those are the stories of yesteryear, and for members only. lol.
Saturday, 15 April, evening time
Complimentary tickets to those that participated in the clean-up. $15 for the buffet tickets for non-helpers.
DJ, buffet, and lounge-y seating in the ballroom. Additional seats on adjacent patio. Bring socks to burn. Members and invited guests only.
Discovering Alexandria Architecture Walking Tour
One day we’re gonna do this! I remember it advertised before. I’d love to get some more tidbits on our town.
April 22, 2023, at 10 a.m., and May 20, 2023, at 2 p.m.
Admission: $20 per person
Carlyle House, 121 N. Fairfax St., Alexandria, VA 22314
Alexandria has grown from a small town in the 18th century to a bustling small city in the 21st century. Join for a tour of Alexandria and explore the various architectural styles that adorn the city streets. Reservations are required as space is limited. Please wear comfortable shoes for this 1.5-hour guided tour. Tours are held rain or shine unless there is severe weather.
ALX Dog Walk
We have a conflict so cannot make it. But wanted to share it with all of you!
April 29, 2023, from 8 to 11 a.m.
Oronoco Bay Park, 100 Madison St., Alexandria, VA 22314
Walkers and dogs alike can enjoy a two-mile walk down historic Union Street and return to the park along the beautiful waterfront walk for the awards celebration of music, prizes, treats, kids’ activities, dog fun and much more. Each registered walker receives a goodie bag, packed with sustainable items, a t-shirt, one free raffle ticket for incredible prizes and a dog bandana.
Ongoing Exhibits / Repeat Performances
Two Boxes of Oranges and Admonia Jackson — Temporary Waterfront Public Art Installation
Every year, there is different public art at the foot of King Street, by water’s edge, to be enjoyed by the tourist and locals alike. This piece is inspired by pieces discovered in 2015 & 2018 on Old Town’s own Potomac waterfront. I have a greater respect for the piece after learning of the inspiration leading to it’s creation, versus just the aesthetic alone.
Late March to November 2023
Waterfront Park, 1A Prince Street, Alexandria, VA 22314
In late March, Two Boxes of Oranges and Admonia Jackson will be unveiled as the fifth temporary public art installation on Old Town Alexandria’s waterfront, part of the City of Alexandria’s Site See: New Views in Old Town series. Created by Jamaican-born, New York-based award-winning artist Nina Cooke John of Studio Cooke John, the installation is inspired by the ships uncovered on Alexandria’s waterfront in 2015 and 2018 and the many layers of history that are not readily seen. The installation forms an abstracted ship’s hull with steel vertical elements that rise and bend, referencing the curve of the hull’s frame. Visitors can stand within the space and imagine a time in Alexandria’s history when the ships carried not only cargo like tobacco, molasses, rum and limes, but also enslaved people who were traded as part of the transatlantic and domestic slave trades. The outer blue of the installation is contrasted with an orange inner surface depicting text pulled from ships’ manifests listing items like herring, coconuts and gin, alongside names and descriptions of enslaved people, such as “Jane Tailor, female, 5’ 2”.” Also listed are “two boxes of oranges” and “Admonia Jackson.”