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Blog :: 12-2013

Five Fun New Years Day Activities

I'm looking forward to tonight. I love New Year's Eve! I don't know about you, though, but I usually spend so much energy deciding what to do on New Year's Eve, that I completely forget about planning about New Year's Day! This year I thought I'd actually look into what's going on New Year's Day in the Reston and DC area. Here are the five activities that made my list. Chances are I'll just decide to stay inside and drink coffee all day, but it's nice to have good options.

  1. Visit the Smithsonian museums I have to say it never occurred to me that the museums would be open on New Year's Day. But they are. Whether you love modern art, airplanes, or dinosaurs, the Smithsonian has something for you. Visit their website to find hours and locations.
  2. Explore the National Zoo Want to spend some time outside in the brisk January air? Visit the National Zoo. It should be quiet on New Years Day. And if you feel adventurous, you can wander on into Rock Creek park for an outdoor picnic. The website has more information.
  3. Take a hike I love hiking in the winter. The air is brisk and there are no bugs. If you really want to stay local, simply pick up any of the RA trails and go for an adventure. Or head off to one of the many local parks (click here for a list). I love starting at River Bend park in Great Falls and hiking along the river into Great Falls Park to look at the falls. The dogs like it too.
  4. Have brunch with friends Why should the new year festivities end at midnight? I love getting together with friends on New Year's Day and talking about our big plans for the coming year. Between Reston Town Center, Lake Anne, and South Lakes Village Center, and there are plenty of wonderful options to choose from in Reston. If I run out of coffee, you'll likely see me down at Lake Anne!
  5. Watch some college bowl games I'm not a huge football fan, but somehow watching college football on New Years Day just feels right. And since I'm not emotionally invested in any of the games, it's a stress-free activity! There are games all week, but here is the January 1 lineup:
  • Gator Bowl, EverBank Field, Jacksonville, Fla. - 12 p.m.
  • Heart of Dallas Bowl, Cotton Bowl, Dallas - 12 p.m.
  • Capital One Bowl, Florida Citrus Bowl, Orlando, Fla.- 1 p.m.
  • Outback Bowl, Raymond James Stadium, Tampa, Fla. - 1 p.m.
  • Rose Bowl Game Presented by Vizio, Rose Bowl, Pasadena, Calif. - 5 p.m.
  • Tostitos Fiesta Bowl, University of Phoenix Stadium, Glendale, Ariz., - 8:30 p.m.

However you decide to spend that day, I hope it is a fun and relaxing start to 2014. Happy New Year!

Ivy Oak Cluster

Ivy Oak Cluster

Ivy Oak cluster is close to Reston Town Center, Lake Anne, pools, paths, and the new metro!

Want the ease of condo living, without living in a traditional condominium high rise? Ivy Oak is the place for you. This condominium community is truly a gem, especially for families with young children (they will love the large playground!). And, Ivy Oak is about a ten minute walk to Reston Town Center, close to both Whole Foods and Harris Teeter, and has easy access to the new Wiehle metro station.

Ivy Oak Cluster was built in 1970/71 and consists of 96 2-story, 3 or 4 bedroom townhomes.  Each has a nice backyard space, many of which are fenced. The neighborhood also has a large common space with a wonderful playground. Ivy Oak is located off North Shore Drive, close to Temporary Road.

Ivy Oak Cluster

There is plenty of space for children to play in Ivy Oak Cluster

For me, the nice thing about condo living in Reston is that all of the exterior maintenance is covered in your condo fee. That means you won't have to replace your roof, or any other major exterior repair. Now that is peace of mind for the busy professional or family.

There are no current listings in Ivy Oak Square but this past year 9 properties sold with an average price of $355,700 (maximum $384,900; minimum $323,000) and an average days on market of just 12.

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Ring in the New Year Reston (Town Center) Style

New Year's Eve at Reston Town Center

Skating in the pavilion at Reston Town Center. Photo Courtesy of Jacky Cheong, Flickr.

I live, work, and socialize on Lake Anne, so my idea of an adventure is to head over to Reston Town Center (which is only a mile away, but feels like a different world). On New Years Eve, Reston Town Center is an idyllic place to be with the twinkling lights and sounds of laughter echoing down the streets. It's beautiful. As I'm making my own plans for New Year's Eve, I thought I'd share my idea of the perfect New Years at Reston Town Center:

1. Strap on your skates. The skating rink at town center will be open until 8:00 p.m. on New Years Eve. Take a few spins before and reconnect with your inner child. Click here for more details. After you've fallen a few times, head over to Clyde's, Paolo's, or any of the other restaurants nearby to warm up.

2. Treat yourself to an evening of dining and decadence. When you're done skating (and après skating), relax in your hotel room before heading out for a gourmet dinner and party. Every year the Hyatt Regency offers spectacular New Years Eve specials (4 course dinner at Tavern 64, room, and breakfast @ $299 per couple--what a deal!). For me, getting a hotel room less than a mile from my home is the ultimate indulgence--a mini vacation with no worry of stressful travel. Check out the specials here.

3. Start the new year right with a 5k run Okay, so you've indulged and had your fun. Now it's time to start the new year right. Or at least start it with 700 other crazy souls willing to strap on their sneakers and go for a fun around town center. The New Year's Day 5K presented by Potomac River Running is always a fun event. And if you really don't want to run (or you can't get a spot since they're limiting it to 700), then grab a coffee and come cheer the runners on! Find registration details here.

Whatever you choose to do, have a wonderful and safe New Year's Eve in Reston!

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  1. Susan on

    Thanks for the suggestion Eve. My husband and I have booked our room at the Hyatt and are looking forward to that wonderful 4-course meal. Not sure about the ice-skating, but I'm doing the run in the morning. Can't wait!

    Governour's Square

    Governour's Square

    Governour's Square offers comfortable homes in a great location!

    For those who like a more traditional, colonial style of home, Governour's Square (aka Governor's Square) in Reston is the community for you. Developed in the late 1960?s, the Governour's Square townhomes are 3-level homes with exterior brick construction and about 1,600 square feet of living space. A central common area is a great place for children and dogs to play, and the nearby Reston Association paths are perfect for those who like to walk or run.

    In fact, everything about the location of Governour's Square is great--this small community of townhouses in Reston is less than a 10 minute walk to Reston Town Center, and close to the new Wiehle Metro station. It's also within a few miles of several grocery stores, including Trader Joe's, Whole Foods, and Harris Teeter. For those with young children, Governor's Square is also a quick walk to Lake Anne Elementary School.

    Check out the current listings in Governour's Square and Reston townhomes here.

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    5 Fun Holiday Festivities Near Reston


    holiday festivities near Reston

    Come welcome Santa to Lake Anne Saturday, December 7. The Jingle on Lake Anne is fun for the whole family!


    Can you believe it's already December? The first Saturday in December is upon us, and in Reston that means Santa is coming to Lake Anne plaza. Watching the children as they wait for Santa to come into sight is one of my absolute favorite things. Jingle on Lake Anne got me thinking of other fun holiday festivities near Reston. There are many things to do, but these are five of my favorites. Enjoy!

    Jingle on Lake Anne Cost: Free Saturday, Dec. 7, 2013; 11 a.m. - 2 p.m., 1609 Washington Plaza, Reston

    Come cheer with the crowds as Santa Claus travels to Lake Anne by barge. Santa loves taking photos and greeting the children. He loves the other activities too--caroling, a petting zoo, music, wine tastings, children's crafts, cookie decorating, a holiday arts and crafts market and much more!

    City of Fairfax Festival of Lights & Carols Cost: Free December 7, 2013, 11:30 a.m.-7 p.m. Kitty Pozer Garden and Old Town Hall, 3999 University Dr., Fairfax

    After you visit Santa at Lake Anne, venture over to Historic Downtown Fairfax for a day and evening of seasonal fun. The holiday cheer lasts all day long--I especially love the s'more's by the yule log! There is also ice sculpting, hot cider, face painting, Christmas tree lighting and caroling.

    National Christmas Tree Cost: Free E St NW & 15th St NW, Washington, DC 20500, Phone:(202) 619-7400 Hours: Wednesday 4:00-6:30 pm, 7:00-9:30 pm

    If you didn't win a ticket to the tree lighting this weekend, don't worry--you can still enjoy the National Christmas Tree. I love parking on the Mall and walking over to the tree to enjoy its majesty. From Wednesday, December 11 until Sunday, December 22, 2013, you can enjoy fabulous music while you gaze at the tree. Bring along a thermos of hot chocolate and a blanket and enjoy the free concert!

    Festival of Lights at Bull Run Cost: See the website for fee schedules. Bull Run Regional Park, 7700 Bull Run Dr., Centreville, Virginia, (703) 359-4633

    The Bull Run Festival of Lights is a 2.5-mile drive-through holiday light show at Bull Run Regional Park. I love the penguins and snowmen. You'll see candy canes, jumping deer, Santa's workshop, Frosty the Snowman, tin soldiers, elves and Santa too. After viewing the lights you can visit the Winter Wonderland Holiday Village that includes amusement rides, an ice skating rink, entertainment, shopping, contests, food, and more. The park is located just off of Interstate 66 in Centreville, on Rt. 29 (Lee Highway).

    Dates and Hours:

    • November 20, 2013 - January 5, 2014.
    • Hours: Monday - Thursday & Sunday: 5:30 to 9:30 p.m.,
    • Fridays, Saturdays & holidays: 5:30 to 10 p.m.

    Mount Vernon by Candlelight Cost: $22 for adults and $15 for children under 12 November 29 - December 22, 5:00 PM - 8:00 PM 3200 Mount Vernon Memorial Highway, Mount Vernon, Virginia 22121

    Visiting Mount Vernon by candlelight is one of the most delightful ways to experience this piece of history. The town crier invites your group into the historic area and an expert Mount Vernon guide takes you on a tour of candlelit lanes, sharing the history of Christmases past as you approach Washington's beloved home. Meet characters from Washington's time, including "Martha Washington" and "Nelly Custis" inside the Mansion as you hear stories about how the Washingtons celebrated Christmas.

    After the Mansion tour, stay around for some 18th-century dancing in the greenhouse and enjoy the crisp evening air near an outdoor bonfire, complete with caroling, cookies, and cider.

    Be sure to purchase your tickets in advance as you'll be assigned a tour time. Click her to buy them.

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    For every new Like to our Facebook fan page in the month of December we'll donate $1.00 to Cornerstones, formerly Reston Interfaith! Like us so we can give!

    Waterfront like along a lake