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Top of the mornin’ to ya! This year’s St. Patrick’s Day Celebration kicks off in a brand new fashion: with the Potomac River Running Lucky Leprechaun 5K on Saturday, March 16, at 8:30am!

Start your Irish-palooza with a festive 3.1 mile run around Reston Town Center.  The 5k course winds its way on the roads surrounding Reston Town Center, and let it be noted – with a 60 minute time limit en tow.  If that sounds daunting, don’t worry! The average time to walk a mile is 20 minutes, and with this track being just over three miles maintaining an easy pace should get you through! Who knows, maybe you’ll even find some gold.*

Stroller-bound wee ’uns: unfortunately this course is not stroller friendly, so you will have to wait for your care-taker at the finish line; we recommend waiting with another care-taker. For the slightly older tykes, there will be a free Kid’s Fun Run at 9:30am – registration for this portion of the event will take place on the morning of March 16 in front of the Pavilion.

Like proof of your commitment to fitness and all things St. Patty’s?  Register early and snag some sweet swag in the form of a Lucky Leprechaun t-shirt: www.prraces.com/luckyleprechaun.

Ok, so you just ran an incredible race on a Saturday morning through the wilds of Reston. It was harrowing. It was revitalizing. It was the fuel for your healthy Irish heart! And, not to mention it gave some early repentance for the day’s coming food and beverage choices…

So, what are you going to do next?!

Stomp across that finish line and get refueled Emerald Isle-style with the Clyde’s of Reston St. Patrick’s Day Celebration – that’s what you’re going to do! At 10am get your fill with the Bacon & Kegs Irish breakfast, then enjoy Clyde’s food, Guinness beer, and Irish folk dancing all day long.  Kid’s get in the spirit too with activities to keep ‘em going all the live long day, including festive face painting and a moon bounce.

Raise a pint, dance a jig, twirl a lass, and eat your fill. This celebration raves on rain or shine on Saturday, March 16, 10am – 11pm. Sláinte!

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*Reston Town Center does not maintain or manage the existence of gold or its distribution in or around the 5K loop area. That is left for participating leprechauns, rainbows, or Brangelina to bestow upon who they wish.

Yes, chilly winds blow and snowflakes flurry down from the skies, but according to Punxsutawney Phil spring is on it’s way! The celebrity groundhog and Seer of the Seasons did NOT see his shadow, which means we get to dodge an additional six weeks of winter.

We’re welcoming the budding season with open arms here at Reston Town Center, and want to remind you of all of the fun things coming your way!

Embrace your Irish at Clyde's St. Patrick's Day Celebration!

Spring kicks-off with Clyde’s St. Patrick’s Day Party!

March

3/16 Clyde’s of Reston‘s 3rd annual St. Patrick’s Day Celebration

3/17 Persian New Year – Nowruz – Celebration & Festivity 

April

4/13 Walk MS 2013, produced by MS Society

4/17 R4 Collection Day – Reduce. Reuse. Recycle. Reston!

4/20 Ride to Provide, presented by Lorenzo Alexander

4/21 Northern VA Kidney Walk, presented by the National Kidney Foundation 

4/27 Paul’s Ride for Life, benefits the Washington Regional Transplant Community 

4/27 – 4/28 Great Grapes! Wine, Arts & Food Festival, produced by Great Grapes!

May

5/4 Pet Fiesta, produced by Gooddogz.org & Reston Dogs

5/5 March for Babies, produced by March of Dimes

5/5 Cinco de Mayo Street Fiesta, produced by Uncle Julio’s Rio Grande Cafe

5/17-5/19 Northern Virginia Fine Arts Festival, produced by Greater Reston Arts Center

June

Taste of Reston, produced by the Greater Reston Chamber of Commerce

Taste of Reston, produced by the Greater Reston Chamber of Commerce

6/1 Concerts on the Town Series begins, Presented by Reston Town Center and Reston Town Center Association

6/2 Tour de Cure, produced by American Diabetes Association

6/9 Love Your Body – Northern Virginia Yoga and Wellness Day, produced by Beloved Yoga

6/14-6/15 Taste of Reston, produced by Greater Reston Chamber of Commerce

6/23 Reston Grand Prix Bicycle Races, produced by Evolution Cycling and The Bike Lane

View a full listing of Reston Town Center events at http://www.restontowncenter.com/events


The Reston Holiday Parade has marched down Market Street, you’ve snapped a few pictures with Santa, done a little shopping, and maybe even grabbed a nap in the afternoon (it is a holiday after all) and November 23, the day after Thanksgiving has been a success, but now it’s time to bring on Christmas! So you’re in front of Fountain Square at 6pm and you’re standing in a crowd electrified with the excitement of Christmas while waiting for Santa’s re-appearance for the Tree Lighting and Sing Along!

Bundled in warm coats, close to your family and neighbors, hugging a cup of hot chocolate, the moment comes when Santa asks for everyone to help light up Reston Town Center with the spirit of Christmas. Led by Cerphe, a DC radio icon, the crowd unites to close their eyes, find that perfect Christmas wish and join that collective wishing power with a 1…2…3…WISH! The power of that Christmas wish lights not only the tree in a brilliant glow, but the entire Reston Town Center!

As everyone marvels at the twinkling spectacle, Santa stirs up the brass quintet and Reston Chorale with a mighty rendition of “O Christmas Tree.” If you missed the handing-out of song books before the tree lighting, you’ll be able to find one at this point and finish singing in the Christmas season. Santa will eventually make his way back to the North Pole, but the crowd will still be singing merrily along.

If you can’t bear to part from this magical Christmas wonderland once the music finishes, you can always hop into a horse-drawn carriage for a ride around Reston Town Center while reveling in the Christmas spirit. And if you’d prefer a warmer climate, head over to Candyland in the lobby of the Hyatt Regency Reston for their magnificent Gingerbread Village made entirely out of confection!

We hope you welcome Christmas with us on November 23 starting with the Gingerbread Man Mile at 8am, the Reston Holiday Parade at 11am, Visits & Photos with Santa 12:30-4:30pm, all the way to the Tree Lighting & Sing Along at 6pm. To join us for the day’s activities, find more info at http://www.restontowncenter.com/holidays/!

Some of the great things about the day after Thanksgiving: you have leftovers for days, you’re finally able to listen to Christmas music without earphones, but best of all, there’s a full day of activities going on at Reston Town Center! In case you’re not the type to get up at 3 am after eating all that food to go shopping (there will be plenty of time for that later), it’s time to “Come out to Play” with friends and family on Friday, November 23, featuring the Reston Holiday Parade at 11 am!

Imagine standing next to a giant Christmas tree along Market Street (at an hour where the sun is out), cradling a warm cup of coffee or hot chocolate (depends on how grown up you feel that day), while you excitedly wait for the Emerald Society Pipe Band to signal the beginning of the parade as the opening banner makes its way down Market Street toward you. Pipes blaring, you cheer, clap, and join in with hundreds of children ringing their jingle bells as legendary creator of Reston, Bob Simon, rolls by.

Dancers, musicians, acrobats, antique cars and more parade pass by while a few groups, like “Gotta Swing” and “Dynamix Salsa Dance Group” stop to really show off what they’ve got. There’s so much to see, but there’s no way you’ll miss those monstrous Macy’s-style helium balloons as they slowly float by, marveling in their wake. The line-up is different every year, but the nostalgia, camaraderie and merriment remain the same!  So come out and see what spectacles await!

And then FINALLY, after all the balloons, merriment and performances … Santa and Mrs. Claus, the ones we’ve been waiting for,  come clip-clopping into view down the street in their horse-drawn carriage waving, and bringing the magic of the Christmas spirit with them. And as you feel that tingly emotion all over, you know, officially, Christmas has arrived and it really is the most wonderful time of the year!

For more pictures of last year’s parade, check out our Facebook album!

We also invite you to join the rest of our memorable day – with the Gingerbread Man Mile (for kids!) at 8am, Visits & Photos with Santa 12:30-4:30pm, Tree Lighting and Sing-Along at 6pm, Horse Drawn Carriage Rides 6:30-10pm. More information at www.restontowncenter.com/holidays! And for a little preview of what the day is going to look like, check out this news clip with Reggie the Bear!

Whatever you do, we hope you and your family create a holiday season worth remembering for years to come!

The heat is on! Prepare your taste buds now for the epic chili you will sample this weekend at Oktoberfest Reston at Reston Town Center. It may not be German, but it certainly is delicious, a little spicy, and a savory favorite for the fall months. The showdown is on Library Street, Saturday, October 6, 12-5pm, but the festival is the weekend of October 5-7, 2012, so plan your visit to Oktoberfest accordingly!

And what a spectacular battle of the beans and beef it will be at this year’s Guns ‘N Hoses Chili Cook-off!  The rivalry between the Fairfax County Police and Fire & Rescue departments has reached an all-time high since last year’s cook-off at Taste of Reston.

After the Police Department won last year with their “Reaper’s Stew,” the Fire Department is gunning (or hosing rather?) for the title of chili champ. The winner will be announced at 4pm on Saturday, so be sure to make it down to Library Street before the panel of judges crowns the newest victor. The panel will be voting based on aroma, color, consistency, taste, and aftertaste to award the “Overall Best Chili.”

But they’re not the only ones who get to choose a winner. After sampling all the varieties, you decide who gets the “People’s Choice” award. This sounds easy enough, but with names such as “The Chili Department Reston Road Kill Chili” and “Crime Scene Section Reaper’s Stew” if may be harder to pick a favorite than you think.

Winners receive not only the title of champion and bragging rights in this battle of the hometown heroes, but a coveted trophy. Who will win? Come out this weekend and find out!

The holidays are coming to Reston Town Center on Friday, November 23! We’re pleased and excited to announce the 2012 theme “Come Out to Play!” celebrating the child in all of us with games of every shape and size – from board games and yard games, to card games and organized sports! We’re also delighted to honor Bruce Butler as this year’s Grand Marshal, he recently retired from South Lakes High School where he served as Assistant Principal for seven years and as an award-winning Principal for another  seven! So join us for a playful day of holiday celebrations with activities, festivities and events for the whole family!

Black Friday
We like to think of this day as “Parade day,” but it’s also Black Friday to the rest of the world, so stores open at 8 am instead of 10 am for those who want to do a bit of shopping while the kids are “running” around before the festivities.

The Gingerbread Man Mile
The day starts off bright and early at 8 am with the Gingerbread Man Mile fun run for kids ranging from toddlers to high schoolers. Presented by Potomac River Running, registration is free and all donations benefit Neediest Kids!

8:00 am – 6-7 year olds (1 mile)
8:15 am – 8-9 year olds (1 mile)
8:30 am – 10-11 year olds (1 mile)
8:45 am – 12-14 year olds (1 mile)
9:00 am – High School Division (1 mile)
9:10 am – 4-5 year olds (approx .4 mile)
9:20 am – Tot Trot (2 blocks)

There’s a reason to run as fast as you can; race winners get to take part in the parade following the race!

The Reston Holiday Parade
The event we’ve been waiting for all year starts at 11 am sharp, so “Come Out to Play! ” – we had fun with the logo, hope you do too!   The parade has been a tradition since 1990 with Macy’s-style balloons, marching bands, dance numbers, cars, community groups and more, but most importantly it’s become a family tradition for many who join us year after year to watch the holidays come alive.  And each year Santa and Ms. Claus are featured at the end of the parade, wishing everyone another memorable and joyous holiday season! So come out early for a good spot, and come dressed for any type of weather, as the show goes on no matter what!

It wouldn’t be the Holiday Parade without the bells! Volunteers will be handing them out to children along Market Street prior to the start of the Parade so they can clap and jingle for the participants! Once the Parade has started, any remaining bells will be handed out near the fountain and Ice Skating Pavilion. Our goal is to make sure every child can receive a bell, thus, we strictly limit distribution to children. The 20 and up crowd, we understand your pain, we love the bells too, but we want to make sure the little ones have the most magical holidays and we appreciate your cooperation.

Visits & Photos with Santa
Once Santa and Mrs. Claus make their way over from the Parade, they will be available for visits and pictures from 12:30 – 4:30 pm by the information center. You can take home a 5” x 7” souvenir portrait when you donate any amount to South Lakes High School Chorus, who will be providing volunteers for the event!

Tree Lighting and Sing Along
The day isn’t over yet, Santa and Mrs. Clause still have more work to do! At 6 pm a horse-drawn carriage will whisk the pair down Market Street to the giant Christmas Tree. And as everyone gathers around, the whole crowd will close their eyes, count to three, and with a mighty wish, help Santa light up the tree and Reston Town Center for the holiday season! At that moment, Santa and Mrs. Claus, the Reston Chorale and a brass quintet will lead the merry bunch in Christmas carols and holiday melodies. Song books are provided before the tree lighting and after Santa heads back to the North Pole.

Horse-drawn Carriage Rides
The sounds of horse hooves clip clopping down Market Street and sleigh bells can only mean one thing … carriage rides! Starting at 6:30 pm, get picked up in front of Talbots on Market Street and enjoy a ride through the newly lit Reston Town Center. Rides cost $5 per person, (children 5 and under ride free!) with all proceeds benefiting Volunteer Fairfax, who also provides volunteers for the evening.  But don’t worry if you can’t get a ride that night, carriage rides will also be available Saturdays in December, 4-9 pm benefiting different local non-profits.

December 1, benefits Reston Rotary
December 8, benefits Character Counts! Reston
December 15, benefits Reston Interfaith
December 22, benefits Volunteer Fairfax!

Volunteer
This special day wouldn’t be possible without the hundreds of faithful volunteers each year. So if you want to experience the holiday celebration from “inside,” email volunteer@restontowncenter.com for more information on volunteering!

Ice Skating
The sparkling ice skating rink will be open from 9 am – 11 pm for those whose holidays aren’t complete without some winter fun on the ice. Any skating supplies you may need are available in the Skate Shop next to the Pavilion.

Gingerbread Village at the Hyatt Regency Reston
Don’t forget to visit the Gingerbread Village, a tradition as old as the Parade, on display in the Hyatt Regency Reston lobby from November 21 – December 27. Let the sweet aromas of gingerbread and candy take you back in time as you look through the intricate holiday village made completely of confection. The village takes five days to make and consists of 100 pounds of flour, 2 gallons of molasses, 2 gallons of honey, 145 pounds of sugar, 1 ½ pounds of cinnamon, 1 ½ pounds of nutmeg, 15 pounds of pretzels and 90 pounds of candy. So go and literally feast your eyes!

We look forward to seeing you there, and if you’d like to see more pictures of last year’s festivities, check out our Facebook page!

It’s only been a few months since Reston Town Center hosted the spring Great Grapes Wine, Arts & Food Festival, but now the cooler weather is about to set in, it’s prime wine season and the fall festival is coming up September 8 & 9!

For Restonians, the festival is a seasonal staple with more than 200 wines from 20 Virginia wineries, delicious food with live gourmet demonstrations, crafts, a kids’ activity area and live entertainment. But let’s get down to business and talk about the real reason we’re all here: the wines. We went through the participating wineries and picked a few of our favorites. (We by no means claim to be expert sommeliers, these just struck our fancy!)

Here are a few of our top wines to watch:

  • Cooper Vineyards in Louisa, VA won eight awards with their 2010 Norton Reserve. Made of 100% Norton grape, it has a deep purple color and a robust burst of fruity, silky flavor and tannins that are best tamed by letting it breathe first.
  • Mattaponi Winery in Spotsylvania, VA, is best known for its Odeimin (meaning strawberry) wine that has won seven awards. It is a light dessert wine made from local strawberries that hints of the fruit starting sweet, but not overly sweet, and finishes with a tart lingering flavor on the palate.
  • Democracy Vineyards in Lovingston, VA, has an eight-time award-winning wine, the Velvet Revolution Reserve 2009, which is a varietal with an explosive complexity that’s a mixture of cherry notes, deep tannins and a nutty, dry-yet-still-fruity finish. The equal parts Cabernet Franc, Chambourcin, Merlot and Petit Verdot round it out for a well-balanced wine.
  • The Williamsburg Winery in Williamsburg, VA, has their barrel-aged Acte12 Chardonnay 2010, which is an eight-time award winner. It is a smooth, toasty chardonnay with a strong buttery finish that leaves a creamy sugary taste on the palate.
  • Potomac Point Vineyard & Winery in Stafford, VA, has the best Viognier of the East Coast according to the Beverage Wine Institute. The Richland Reserve Viognier 2009 has a golden yellow color with gentle, yet complex aromas of tropical fruits such as citrus, and dragon fruit yet with a creamy banana and coconut custard finish. This is a well-balanced wine with a crisp medium-to-full-body taste.
  • And lastly, don’t miss the Unicorn Winery in Amissville, VA – we can’t speak to their wines, we just love the name!

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So now you know about a few of the great wines that are going to be at the festival, grab your tickets (a percentage of the proceeds go to Spirit of Hope Children’s Foundation!) and get ready to uncork the fun!  If you can’t make it to the festival this season, don’t worry, Reston Town Center has plenty of delicious wines to taste at our restaurants or grab a bottle at our specialty shops like Market Cellars!

This summer is an exciting one because it’s finally the summer Olympics again! The whole country has been anxiously watching the trials since June, picked the favorites and now we’re ready for the real deal starting this Friday, July 27, 2012.

If you weren’t able to snag a ticket to London but still want to watch the Olympics with a cheering crowd of people, there are some great restaurants in Reston Town Center  just brimming with good food and drinks and plenty of fun people to watch the games with.
Ziegler of the U.S. poses with her bronze medal for the women's 800m freestyle final at the 14th FINA World Championships in Shanghai
As you cheer on our fellow Americans, be sure to root for Kate Ziegler, a Fairfax County local who is returning to the Olympics for the second time to swim the women’s 800-freestyle. At only 24, Kate is also the current World Record Holder in the 1500 meter freestyle and a 4-time World Champion  – way to represent Fairfax County!

 
While the Olympic Games may not be coming to Reston Town Center any time soon, the 2015 World Police & Fire Games are! From June 26 to July 5, 2015, Reston Town Center will become the Olympic village to more than 10,000 police officers, firefighters, customs and correction officers. They’ll come to Fairfax County from more than 60 countries around the world to showcase their athletic excellence in over 65 sporting events. The Hyatt Regency Reston will be one of the host hotels for the games, and there will be nightly entertainment for athletes, WPFG officials and their families at Reston Town Center. Additionally, Presidents Park and Hyatt Park will form an area of the Athletes’ Village for athletes’ social events. How exciting is that?!

The 2015 games will mark the 30th anniversary of the event while also coinciding with celebrations in Washington, D.C. for the Fourth of July. It’s going to be quite the special occasion! If you’re looking to get involved in this historic event, more than 5,000 volunteers are needed for the games to run smoothly, so find out how you can help.

The World Police & Fire games may be 2 years away, but the London Olympics are this week, so get ready, get excited and go team USA!

Let’s be honest- by show of hands, who likes going to the DMV? Just as I thought … no one. I think someone at the DMV also realized this and came up with a wonderful idea: the DMV2Go, where the DMV comes to you – literally!

We are so excited it’s coming back to Reston Town Center next Wednesday, July 18, 9am – 4pm. The newest DMV2Go in the fleet will be parked at the Pavilion on Market Street. We’re not talking about online renewals here; we’re talking about a fully-functioning office with wireless access to DMV computer systems.


DMV2Go had more than 100 different transactions at Reston Town Center last March, including applying for and renewing driver’s licenses and ID cards, road and knowledge tests, vision screenings and new pictures taken. Customers can order disabled parking placards or plates, and get vehicle titles, license plates and decals. You can also update your addresses for the DMV record, voter registration and organ donor information.

Because we are christening this new DMV2Go, there will be a ribbon-cutting event at 11am to celebrate with several local legislators and dignitaries in attendance. So come for the show, and stay for the service!

Don’t forget, you will need original documents that prove identity, legal presence in the United States, social security number and Virginia residency to receive a license or ID, so check the DMV’s document guide to see what you need to bring with you. And if you can’t make it next Wednesday, check out where the DMV2Go is headed next in Virginia!

Photo courtesy of Marine Corps Marathon

For the second year in a row Reston’s Potomac River Running Store has conquered the Marine Corps Marathon (MCM) Team Running Store Competition.  A total of 15 stores from Virginia, Maryland, and Washington, D.C. participated in the competition.  With a winning time of 8:46:30, PRR Reston clinched the win by 14 minutes.

PRR team members consisted of Adam Condit, Christ Sloane, and Mary Klaff.  Condit finished fifth overall in the competition – among 21,023 MCM finishers – with an individual time of 2:29:28 (beating his 2010 time of 2:31:00), pushing the PRR team into first.  Team Running Store results are determined by combining the finishing times of each store’s fastest three runners, including at least one runner of both genders.

The MCM Running Store Award was presented by MCM Director Rick Nealis and mascot Miles the bulldog to PRR store owners Ray and Cathy Pugsley and Margie and Brendan Shapiro on Wednesday, January 4. “We are so proud of our crew for once again hanging tough and finishing strong,” says Ray Pugsley.

Congratulations Potomac River Running and team! Find information on the Potomac River Running store and races at www.potomacriverrunning.com.

All unofficial results for the 36th MCM Team Competitions are available at www.marinemaration.com.

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