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Get ready to fill your tankards and sing some German folk songs; Oktoberfest is coming back to Reston Town Center October 5-7, 2012! Hosted by the Greater Reston Chamber of Commerce, the 3-day event includes a Saturday morning 5K, food, wine & beer, a carnival, a chili cook off and live entertainment including traditional German music and dance. Whew! Sounds like a quite a weekend, so let’s get down to details, shall we?

The festival opens on Friday, October 5 at 3 pm. That means the carnival will be up and running with rides like the tilt-a-whirl and games to win fantastic prizes for the kids and the kids-at-heart who can’t resist. The food will also be underway with tasty treats like Japanese potstickers from Obi Sushi, Autumn Gnocci from Paolo’s Ristorante, Italian sausage from Il Fornaio, mac & cheese from Uno Chicago Grill, and lots more dishes from participating restaurants! (Carnival tickets will be available to purchase online soon and all-you-can-ride wristbands for Saturday morning will be available for purchase at The Greater Reston Chamber of Commerce starting September 17.)

Of course the beers and wines will also be available throughout the festival. In true Oktoberfest fashion, seasonal beers like Shock Top’s Pumpkin Wheat and Dominion’s Oktoberfest  will be available along with some perennial favorites  such as Beck’s, Bud Light, and Widmer. For those who love microbrews, there will be a couple craft beers on tap near the Library Street stage! And for those poor souls who can’t or don’t like beer, Market Cellars and The Wine Cabinet will have wine available near the Pavilion!

Saturday features a few activities unique to the Oktoberfest weekend!  The morning kicks off at 8:15 am with the Anthem Pumpkin 5K, offering a quick route around Reston Town Center and the surrounding community.  The 5K is followed by the Pumpkin Smash Mile, a non-timed mile long party with Halloween costumes and tons of enthusiasm. Participants with the BEST costumes will be awarded prizes, honor and bragging rights. And lastly, the smallest ones get to decorate pumpkins and compete in the Pumpkin Dash, which also encourages fun and costumes! Online registration is open through October 2, otherwise, you can register at packet pickup on October 5, or on-site before the races on October 6.

Since the runners loop back to the Pavilion prior to Oktoberfest kicking-off, the Scrambled Legs Breakfast will be open for post-race refueling, including fall brews of course, and the carnival will open early and offer unlimited-ride wristbands!  Of course, runners are encouraged to stay and enjoy all the festivities – Oktoberfest opens at 11 am!

If you’re still hungry after the Scrambled Legs Breakfast, you won’t have to wait very long before the Guns ‘n Hoses Chili Cookoff at noon where the Police Department and the Fire Department square off in a battle of brute cooking skills. You will need to taste the competition very, very carefully before deciding on your “People’s Choice” vote. The award ceremony starts at 4 pm, so make sure you’re there when they announce the champion!

It wouldn’t be a festival without live entertainment! Traditional German music and dance will fill the streets all three days. Then at night, the Pavilion will rock out to this line up: Friday night, Gonzo’s Nose, music from the 80s to today; Saturday night, 2U, a U2 tribute band; Sunday night, Almost Journey, as you could guess, a Journey tribute band.

And, as with any great event, volunteers are always a must! If you would like to participate in the event in a slightly different way (and get a few free tickets and a tee-shirt for your efforts!) sign up here.

This is the fall festival that really has something for everybody, so come ready to drink some brews, eat good food, ride the rides and get in the autumn spirit. For ticket sales and other updates, follow us on Facebook or Twitter, OR, follow Oktoberfest on Facebook. We look forward to seeing you at Reston Town Center – Prost!

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!

Great Grapes! Wine, Arts & Food Festival Comes to Reston Town Center
Saturday, April 24 2010, Noon – 6 pm

Attendees of the upcoming wine festival can sample over 200 wines from 20 different local wineries.

What’s All The Excitement About…

  • Great Family Fun. The festival is an inexpensive way to see Virginia Wine Country – right in your own backyard. Take your sample glass and enjoy samples from all your favorite wineries.
  • Great new kids activity area. If you want to bring the kids, have them enjoy the fun activity booths and craft area. Kids are FREE.
  • Crafts and Culinary Gift Items. The Show features about 60 different artists and crafters that will offer neat gift ideas for the foodie in you or your friends.
  • “Gourmet Live!” Enjoy cooking and wine pairing seminars on-site at the show.
  • Live Music on the Main Stage. Listen to your favorite bands while you try the different wines on-site.
  • Win a Trip to Sonoma Wine Country! One lucky winner will win a trip to Sonoma Wine Country in 2010. Make sure you join our mailing list at the entrance of the show to be entered to win.

One Adult Admission Includes:

Souvenir wine glass, unlimited samples, all performances and cooking demonstrations.

Ticket Prices

$30 2-day ticket

$25 On-site

$20 Advance online

$15 Designated Drivers

$18 Group Tickets (per ticket) for groups of 20 or more (must order by phone 800.830.3976).

Kids – 12 and under admitted FREE!

Advanced Purchase at www.uncorkthefun.com or 800.830.3976.

Reston Town Center at Night, at Oktoberfest Reston 2009

Reston Town Center at Night, at Oktoberfest Reston 2009

 

 

The sights, sounds and smells of a German Oktoberfest celebration once again filled Reston Town Center from Friday, October 9 through Sunday, October 11. Attendees enjoyed German food, beer and wine along with live entertainment plus carnival rides, all presented by the Greater Reston Chamber of Commerce.

Participating restaurants included a number of Town Center favorites such as Clyde’s of Reston, The Counter, Il Fornaio, McCormick & Schmick’s Seafood Restaurant, M&S Grill, Uno Chicago Grill as well as Cafe Montmartre, Dinner Zen, Paradise Ice Cream, Red Hot & Blue, Vie de France Bakery Café and Vinifera Wine Bar & Bistro.

Music and entertainment was presented all three days in the Reston Town Center Pavilion, featuring The Continentals, Sam Gunderson and Cactus Grove, Sexton’s German Band, the Kings Park German Band and many more. The Oktoberfest Reston Carnival offered amusement rides and entertainment for the young and young at heart. Attendees also enjoyed free horse-drawn hay rides and face painting on Saturday, adding even more family fun to Oktoberfest Reston.

Virginia's Greatest Pumpkin

Virginia’s Greatest Pumpkin

Also on Saturday, October 10 was the Anthem Great Pumpkin 5K Races. At the Finish Line Festival, participating runners, walkers, joggers and their families took part in the pumpkin decorating contest from and saw Virginia’s “Greatest Pumpkin” on display. The Children’s Pumpkin Dash offered free races for those 4 to 10 years of age – many who arrived in full Halloween regalia! The Anthem Great Pumpkin 5k was Presented by the Greater Washington Sports Alliance; Anthem Blue Cross and Blue Shield; and Potomac River Running to benefit the INOVA Heart and Vascular Institute.

Established in 1990, beautiful Reston Town Center is an acclaimed outdoor venue offering more than 50 retail shops, 30 restaurants and a 13-screen cinema, plus more to come.  At the Center’s hub, the Pavilion hosts special events, concerts, festivals throughout the year and ice-skating in winter. For more information on shopping, dining and events at Reston Town Center, visit www.restontowncenter.com, and find it on Facebook and follow on Twitter. Address: 11900 Market Street, Reston, VA 20190 Directions: From I-495, take I-66 west to the Dulles Toll Road (Exit 12, Route 267 West) to Reston Parkway (Exit 12). Turn right on Reston Parkway then left on New Dominion Parkway (4th light).

 

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