Monster Drawing Rally and More This Weekend in Reston

More than 50 artists from around the region will create live artwork using their preferred media at a live fundraising event tomorrow (Saturday).

The Greater Reston Arts Center will host the third annual Monster Drawing Rally, which helps raise funds for its programs, at Signature apartments (11850 Freedom Drive).

As works are completed, they will be hung on a wall and will be available for purchase at $75 each. The event is free and open to all.

Tomorrow (Saturday)

  • Gifts from the HeART Shopping Event (11 a.m. to 4 p.m.) — Residents can buy artwork, jewelry, and other items at Reston Community Center Lake Anne’s annual event.
  • Mystery Authors Extravaganza (1-4 p.m.) — Authors from the Chesapeake Chapter of Sisters in crime will prevent their 2019 novels. Books will be available for sale and signing.
  • Reston Friends Holiday Book Sale (10. a.m. to 4 p.m.) — Gently-used books will be available for purchase at the annual event at Reston Regional Library. 
  • Lake House Open House (10 a.m. to noon) — Light refreshments will be available at the open house which takes place at the Lake House.
  • Reston Town Center Holiday Performances — Over the weekend, several performers and groups will perform at the Reston Town Center promenade. Performances continue through Saturday, Dec. 21.

Sunday (Dec. 8)

  • Reston Friends Holiday Book Sale (1-4 p.m.) — Gently-used books will be available for purchase at the annual event at Reston Regional Library. 
  • Holiday Open House (1-4 p.m.) — A holiday open house to celebrate the 10th anniversary of the opening of the Nature House takes place at the. Walker Nature Center. The event is free and registration is not required.
  • Best Kept Secrets with Dr. Charles Thomas (2 p.m.) — Dr. Charles Thomas, CEO of Clear Cloud, discusses his new book, “Best Kept Secrets from Invisible Walk-ons to Life Champions.” The event takes place at Scrawl Books (11911 Freedom Drive).

Photo via GRACE

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Friends of Reston Holiday Book Sale Kicks Off Today

Thousands of books are available for purchase beginning today (Thursday) during an annual sale by Friends of the Reston Regional Library.

According to information provided by the Friends, the nonprofit organization has raised more than $700,000 for the library through its book sales over the past 15 years. In addition, it has been able to donate $200,000 to direct library support programs — including $100,000 in eBooks, $25,000 in children’s series books, a Braille printing station for the Access Services branch, librarian scholarships and more.

Science fiction, religion, romance, cooking, sports, history and many other genres of titles are available. Small paperback books are available for as little as 50 cents, with hardcovers books priced as low as $1.50.

The sale is on through 8 p.m. today, between 10 a.m. and 5 p.m. tomorrow (Friday), between 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. on Saturday, and from 1-4 p.m. on Sunday.

The Friends’ next sale will be mystery, thriller and adventure sale, which is set for Feb. 6-9. Friends of the Reston Regional Library is made up of nearly 100 active volunteers who donate over 10,000 hours a year to process donations, run sales and reach out to the community.

For more information about Friends of the Reston Regional Library and its book sales, visit its website or its Facebook page, find it on Twitter, call 703-829-5467, or email [email protected].

File photo

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Reston Chorale Presents “Wonder of the Season” Holiday Concert

The Reston Chorale, a county-based choir, will present a special holiday choir this weekend.

The performance, “Wonder of the Season,” is set for Saturday, Dec. 7. Two concerts are planned at 4:30 p.m. and 7:30 p.m. and will take place at Reston Community Center, Hunters Woods (2310 Colts Neck Road).

The concert features Antonio Vivaldi’s Gloria with Soprano Meagan Sill, a chamber ensemble and organ, as well as seasonal favorites for all ages.

Tickets are $25 fro adults and $20 for seniors. They can be purchased online and will be available at the RCC box office for pick-up.

Photo via Facebook/Reston Chorale

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Nova Labs to Host Market with Items Made from 3D Printers, Laser Cutters

An upcoming event in Reston will offer patrons a chance to purchase out-of-the-box holiday gifts.

Artisans from Nova Labs, Inc. will display gifts made from 3d printers and laser cutters at a maker market and artisan fair this weekend.

Nova Labs, Inc. (1916 Isaac Newtown Square West), a nonprofit organization that offers artisans tools and equipment to create items, will display work like glassware, personalized items, vases, cards, and jewelry at the fair, which is set for Saturday, Dec. 7 from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m.

The fair will also include blacksmithing demonstrations, tours, a magic sandbox and virtual reality rooms.

The event is free and open to all.

Photo via Unsplash

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Walker Nature Center Celebrates 10th Anniversary of Nature House

This Sunday (Dec. 8), the Walker Nature Center (11450 Glade Drive) will celebrate the 10th anniversary of its indoor facilities.

The center invites the community to come by its Nature House for an afternoon of nostalgia and celebration from 1 to 4 p.m. The event features live music, guest appearances from Santa and the center’s mascots, ornament crafting, sing-alongs and a cake-cutting ceremony.

The event organizers also ask that attendees bring along photos that they’ve previously taken and hang them to a wall along with written notes about memories surrounding the center, which will be on display through January.

A cake-cutting ceremony will take place at 1:15 p.m. and Santa is expected to arrive around 3 p.m.

Before the Nature House opened in 2009, the center was forced to turn people away due to a variety of reasons, Katie Shaw, the center’s manager said. Inclusion of the nature house was a gamechanger, she said.

The implementation of the facility allowed the center to host guests and student groups regardless of inclement weather, which Shaw said often left dozens of kids disappointed when their field trip was canceled.

“The fun goes on, the learning goes on. It has been wonderful,” she said.   

Though the Walker Nature Center is nearly as old as Reston, Robert Simon included a suggestion for an indoor nature facility in his original plans, which was finally built thanks to financial assistance from the Friends of Reston.

Now, the center includes on-site naturalists to answer community questions, running water and plumbing, seasonal programs for all ages, event space and even an environmental film series for adults.

“Our environment, especially here in Reston, is under a lot of pressure now,” Shaw said. “Having this center here in the middle of this community engages people in something bigger than themselves.”

Photo via Friends of Reston

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Reston Town Center to Host Annual Tree Lighting This Week

The holiday tree in Reston Town Center is set to light up this Friday (Nov. 29).

This year’s celebration is set to begin at 5 p.m. with a performance from “The Nutcracker” by the Conservatory Ballet before the official tree lighting takes place at 6 p.m.

A half-hour-long holiday sing-along, in conjunction with the Reston Chorale and a brass quartet, will wrap up the evening after the tree is lit.

Attendees are encouraged to show up early and gather around Market Street near Fountain Square (11921 Freedom Drive).

Songbooks will be provided, and there will be a guest appearance from Mr. and Mrs. Claus.

Photo via Facebook

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Annual Turkey Trail Tour in Reston to Teach Turkey Facts

The annual “Turkey Trail” event in Reston invites community members to take a nature hike and learn about wild turkeys.

People can take a guided tour from a naturalist on Saturday (Nov. 30) from 11 a.m. until 12 p.m. at the Walker Nature Center (1140 Glade Drive). Participants will learn about turkey facts and the climate, according to the Facebook page

All ages are welcome and programming is designed to interest a variety of participants, the event page said.

Tickets are $5 for Reston Association members and $7 for non-RA members. Anyone wishing to participate needs to register by Wednesday (Nov. 27).

Photo via Walker Nature Center/Facebook

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Reston Holiday Parade Returns Later This Month

Later this month, people in Reston have the chance to celebrate the holidays with a day of festivities.

The Reston Holiday Parade is set to take place on Friday (Nov. 29) in the Reston Town Center (11900 Market Street) and includes family-friendly events that are scheduled to take place throughout the day.

Festivities will kick-off with a half-mile parade beginning at 11 a.m., which will last an hour and feature “Macy’s-style balloons, musicians, dancers, antique cars, characters, community groups, dignitaries, special guest emcees,” according to the event website.

Children will be given bells along the parade route.

The route will run along Market Street and finish up with Mr. and Mrs. Clause, which kids will have the opportunity to interact with later.

People can enjoy mini train rides, street entertainment and take photos with Mr. and Mrs. Clause from noon until 4:30 p.m, following the parade.

At 6 p.m. there will be a Fountain Square tree lighting and sing-along, followed by horse-drawn carriage rides from 6:30 until 10 p.m.

All proceeds from the paid activities will benefit local charities.

Photo via Reston Town Center

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Reston Community Orchestra to Kick Off 32nd Season This Weekend

Reston Community Orchestra kicks off its 32nd season this Saturday (Nov. 2) at 4 p.m. at Reston Community Center Hunters Woods.

The ensemble, which is composed of volunteers, aims to enhance the culture of the community by presenting diverse symphonic music.

Maestro Dingwall Fleary has served as the music director and conductor of the ensemble since 1995.

The orchestra offers free concerts in an effort to fulfill its pledge, “Great music for a great community.”

The show, which is free and open for all, kicks off at 4 p.m. Donations are appreciated.

Photo via Reston Community Orchestra

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YMCA in Reston Celebrates 20th Anniversary With Fundraising Gala

The YMCA Fairfax County Reston is hosting a fundraising gala in celebration of its 20th anniversary.

This year’s annual gala will be held at the YMCA (12196 Sunset Hills Road) from 6-11 p.m. next Saturday (Nov. 16) and feature a dinner party, silent auction and after-party, according to the event page.

“Our mission ensures that no one is turned away from access to ‘Y’ programs and membership,” the page said.

Last year, the gala raised $280,000 for the center, according to the  YMCA’s website.

Individual tickets start at $150 and sponsorships start at $1,000.

Image via YMCA Fairfax County Reston

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Bestselling Author to Discuss Iranian Revolution at Reston Community Center

The Iranian American bestselling author of “Reading Lolita in Tehran” comes to Reston Community Center’s CenterStage next month.

Author Azar Nafisi is set to discuss her book and other work — which offers a portrait of the Islamic revolution in Iran and its effect on one university professor and her students — on Wednesday, Nov. 6 at 8 p.m.

Copies of her books, including “The Republic of Imagination: America in Three Books,” will be available for purchase and signing after the event.

Nafisi is a fellow at Johns Hopkins University’s School of Advanced International Studies and has taught at Oxford University and several universities in Tehran.

Tickets are $15 for Reston residents and $20 for all others. More information about the event is available online.

Photo via Twitter/Azar Nafisi

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Hunters Woods Clean-Up Day to Improve Neighborhood Appearance

A new volunteer tradition aims to keep the Hunters Woods neighborhood clean.

The first annual Hunters Woods Clean-Up Day will take place on Sunday (Nov. 3) beginning at 11:30 a.m. at the Hunters Woods Fellowship House (2231 Colts Neck Road). Volunteers will improve the appearance of the neighborhood, according to the event’s Facebook page.

The event is sponsored by the Hunters Woods Neighborhood Coalition, which will provide the supplies for volunteers including gloves and trash bags.

During the event, volunteers will clean neighboring areas ranging from Hunters Woods at Trails Edge to Hunters Woods Village Condominiums.

All community members are welcome to swing by help the cause.

After the event, snacks and hot drinks will be provided for volunteers, according to the event page.

Image via Google Maps

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Upcoming Fundraiser to Benefit Indigenous Amazon Population

An upcoming fundraiser in Reston will help save the Amazon Rainforest.

There will be family fun activities including a yard sale, a ranger station, live music and crafts for kids at the Pony Barn Picnic Area (Steeplechase Drive and Triplecrown Road) on Sunday (Oct. 27) from 10 a.m. until 4 p.m., according to a press release.

Admission is free but all of the donation funds from the event will go towards the Amazon Conservation Team, an organization that preserves indigenous communities and natural ecosystems, the press release said.

“The Amazon Rainforest supplies 20 percent of the oxygen we need to live on Earth; however, the size of three football fields are being deforested every minute at the Amazon, according to latest government data,” the press release said.

The event is sponsored by several local businesses around the Reston community.

All are welcome to attend. Anyone wanting to sponsor a yardsale table can email the event organizer.

Photo via Reston Association

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Washington West Film Festival Comes to Reston Next Week

A charity film festival is coming to Reston next week.

The Washington West Film Festival will take place from Thursday to next Tuesday (Oct. 24-28) at various venues around Reston, offering patrons a chance to watch the works of upcoming filmmakers on the big screen and contribute to a charitable cause.

The festival will kick off with a “Star Wars Red Carpet” event at Bow Tie Cinemas (11940 Market Street) at 5 p.m. on Thursday, Oct. 24. Tickets are free and admission is open to the public.

Since this event celebrates Anthony Daniels, attendees are encouraged to dress in costume as C-3PO — the humanoid robot Daniels’ played. There will be a prize for the attendee dressed in the most gold.

The charity festival was founded in 2011 by Brad Russell, according to the festival website. The festival gives all of its profits to charities, which differ from year to year. This year’s charity recipients are not listed on the website yet.

This year’s festival will feature around 30 films, ranging in genre and length. A schedule of showings and tickets can be found online.

Photo via Washington West Film Festival

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Reston Home Tour and More This Weekend in Reston

The Reston Historic Trust & Museum’s annual home tour offers residents a chance for a self-guided tour of five private homes. The tour, which runs from 10 a.m. to 5 p.m., also includes a look at VY/Reston Heights and Hunters Woods at Trails Edge, a new retirement community. Registration is open online. Tickets can also be purchased at the museum, Wine Cabinet, Chesapeake Chocolates, and the Greater Reston Arts Center.

A word of advice for those taking part: Roadwork is being done on Reston Parkway, requiring a quick detour. The parkway is open between Wiehle Avenue and Round Pebble lain for local traffic only.

Tomorrow (Saturday)

  • Diwali Cultural Fair (10:30 a.m. to 12:30 p.m.) — Celebrate the Hindu festival of lights with games, music, food, craft and other activities at Reston Regional Library.
  • Reston Newcomers’ Bus Tour (10 a.m. to noon) — Newcomers to Reston are welcome to take part in an open house and bus tour organized by the Reston Association. More information about the tour is available online.
  • Book Launch Party (3 p.m.) — Author MK Meredith comes to Scrawl Books for a launch party and a discussion on her new book, “Not Your Usual Boob: The Good, Bad and Wonky of Breast Cancer.” All proceeds from book sales will benefit Runway for the Cure.
  • Runway to the Cure (6 p.m.) — The fashion show kicks off at Reston Town Center — with all proceeds benefitting breast cancer research and local women fighting breast cancer. A donation of $25 is suggested.

Sunday (Oct. 20)

  • Chess Club for Kids (2-3 p.m.) — Learn openings, tactics and end-game strategies at the club, which is open kids of all ages at Reston Regional Library.
  • History of World War II (2-4 p.m.). — Dr. Harry Butowsky of George Mason University continues his six-part lecture series at Reston Regional Library.

Photo courtesy Charlotte Geary Photography

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