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Memorial Day Weekend Events: Parades, Festivals Around Northern VA, DC

Patch logo Patch 5/26/2022 Emily Leayman
There are plenty of ways to celebrate Memorial Day in the region, including the Falls Church Memorial Day Parade and Festival. © Emily Leayman/Patch There are plenty of ways to celebrate Memorial Day in the region, including the Falls Church Memorial Day Parade and Festival.

WASHINGTON, DC — The three-day Memorial Day weekend will bring plenty of events in Northern Virginia and DC, from ceremonies honoring those who have died in the armed forces, to performances and other events to welcome summer.

The nation's capital region is home to some of the largest Memorial Day remembrances, from the Arlington National Cemetery ceremony to the PBS National Memorial Day Concert and National Memorial Day Parade. There are other events to enjoy nearby, such as the Falls Church Memorial Day Parade and Festival, ViVa! Vienna! and Strawberry Jubilee.

Below are events throughout the weekend. Click on the links for more information.

Flowers of Remembrance Day at Arlington National Cemetery: Saturday, May 28

Arlington National Cemetery will host its first Flowers of Remembrance Day at the Tomb of the Unknown Soldier from 9 a.m. to 4 p.m. Visitors will be able to place flowers at the tomb to honor their sacrifice. Flowers will be provided, or visitors can bring long-stemmed flowers to place at the tomb. Vases, wreaths, or flowers with any packaging or plastic containers are not allowed.

Arlington National Cemetery historians will offer history talks at 10 a.m. and 2:30 p.m. in the center of the Memorial Amphitheater to share the history of Decoration Day, which Flowers of Remembrance Day honors. An optional walking tour will follow the 10 a.m. talk.

PBS National Memorial Day Concert: Sunday, May 29

The PBS Memorial Day concert special will return live from Washington, DC for the 33rd year from 8 p.m. to 9:30 p.m Sunday. The concert will be hosted by Tony Award-winner Joe Mantegna and Emmy Award-winner Gary Sinise, two actors who have shown strong support for veteran and active duty troops causes. Among the segments of the concert will be a remembrance of Gen. Colin L. Powell, USA (Ret.) with actor Dennis Haysbert, Generations of Service presented by actor Gil Birmingham, Honoring Gold Star Families with multi-Emmy Award-winning actress Jean Smart and Women in WWII Tribute. There will also be performances by award-winning actress and singer Lea Salonga; Emmy, Grammy, Tony, and SAG Award-nominated actor Norm Lewis; country music singer songwriter and U.S. Army veteran Craig Morgan; Grammy-winning singer Rhiannon Giddens; Tony Award-winning Broadway star Brian Stokes Mitchell; singer and "American Idol" alum Pia Toscano; the National Symphony Orchestra with top pops conductor Jack Everly; and Salute to Services with the Joint Chiefs of Staff. Other participants will include The U.S. Army Herald Trumpets, The U.S. Army Chorus, The Soldiers’ Chorus of the U.S. Army Field Band, The U.S. Navy Band Sea Chanters, The U.S. Air Force Singing Sergeants, the Armed Forces Color Guard and Service Color Teams provided by the Military District of Washington, D.C.

The concert will be available on PBS, online, YouTube, and on demand from May 29 to June 12.

Memorial Day Ceremony at Arlington National Cemetery: Monday, May 30

The 154th National Memorial Day Wreath-Laying and Observance Program will be held at noon Monday. The U.S. Army Military District of Washington will conduct a Presidential Armed Forces Full Honor Wreath-Laying Ceremony at the Tomb of the Unknown Soldier, followed by an observance program by the Department of Defense in the Memorial Amphitheater. The events will be preceded by the U.S. Army Band “Pershing’s Own” performance in the amphitheater at 11:15 a.m.

The wreath-laying ceremony will be limited to official participants only. President Joe Biden will lay the wreath at the ceremony. The ceremony is hosted by Maj. Gen. Duane R. Miller, Provost Marshal General of the United States Army.

Secretary of Defense Lloyd J. Austin III will hold the Department of Defense observance program in the Memorial Amphitheater. Seating will be available on a first come, first served basis. A free shuttle will be available from the Arlington National Cemetery's Welcome Center to the Memorial Amphitheater starting at 9 a.m. Walking to the amphitheater is prohibited. Family pass holders can enter at the Southern Service Complex Gate (Columbia Pike location) to minimize wait times for entry.

A live stream of the ceremonies will be available online. Visit Arlington National Cemetery's website for more details on visiting and the security checkpoint for Memorial Day.

National Memorial Day Parade: Monday, May 30

The National Memorial Day Parade returns along Constitution Avenue in Washington, DC at 2 p.m. Monday. The largest event to honor the men and women who have made sacrifices in the armed forces, the parade is available to view in person or on television. The parade will be preceded by a pre-parade performance by the Eli Young Band at 1 p.m. at Constitution Avenue and 7th Street.

Wolf Trap Blast Off with "The President's Own" United States Marine Band: Sunday, May 29

This free event launches Wolf Trap's summer season with a performance by "The President's Own" United States Marine Band. The band will entertain the crowd with performances of concert band favorites. The show at 8 p.m. will be followed by a fireworks show at approximately 9:45 p.m. The event will have limited availability with first come, first served seating. Gates will open at 6:30 p.m. Fireworks viewing areas will open around 9:30 p.m.

Falls Church Memorial Day Parade and Festival: Monday, May 30

Falls Church will host its 40th Annual Parade and Festival with other festivities throughout the day. It all starts at 9 a.m. with a Fun Run starting at Great Falls Street and Little Falls Street. At 11 a.m., a Memorial Day Ceremony will be held at the Veterans Memorial by the Community Center with Capt. Shaw H. Cohe, SC, US Navy (Ret.) serving as the keynote speaker, followed by the Falls Church Concert Band performing at 12:30 p.m. The parade will behind at 2 p.m. along Park Avenue between West Street and Little Falls Street. This year's grand marshal is Chet De Long, who was recognized for contributions to the Mary Riley Styles Public Library. In between the events, the festival will be held on City Hall and Community Center grounds with food and beverage vendors, merchants, craft vendors, and civic groups.

Memorial Day Concert by the Quantico Marine Corps Band: Monday, May 30

The Quantico Marine Corps Band will provide a free patriotic concert on Memorial Day at the National Museum of the Marine Corps from 3 p.m. to 4 p.m. Monday. Visitors can bring a blanket or camp chair to enjoy the show. In the case of rain or stormy weather, the concert will be canceled.

Manassas National Battlefield Memorial Day Program: Monday, May 30

The Manassas National Battlefield will host its Memorial Day program at 2 p.m. Monday. The location is the Patriots Monument on Henry Hill, a short distance from the park's visitor center on Route 234.

The program will look at the history of Memorial Day and honor those who have died in the armed forces. The special ceremony will include original remarks, songs, poetry from the original dedication of the monument 157 years ago by Civil War Union soldiers in 1865, wreath laying, National Moment of Remembrance at 3 p.m., and playing of Taps by the 8th Regiment.

The monument was dedicated on June 10, 1865 by Union troops, who wanted a memorial for those who died in First Manassas in 1861. The monument "In Memory of the Patriots Who Fell" is one of the oldest extant monuments on Civil War battlefields.

National Museum of the U.S. Army Memorial Day Weekend: May 27-30

This will be the first time the National Museum of the United States Army is open to the public on Memorial Day due to last year's pandemic-related closure. The museum and partner, The Army Historical Foundation, will host special activities, including a poppy flower-making activity from May 27 to 30. Screenings of the documentary "Sunken Roads: Three Generations After D-Day" will be held at 10 a.m on May 27, 10 a.m., 12 p.m. and 2 p.m. on May 28, and 10 a.m. and 2 p.m. on May 29. A Q&A with filmmakers will be held after showings at 10 a.m. on May 27 and 28, and 2 p.m. on May 29.

Over Memorial Day weekend, the museum will also open Operation Safe Passage, a simulated humanitarian mission where participants learn geography, science, technology, engineering, and math to respond to an earthquake. Advance registration is required. Visitors reserving museum admission tickets for May 28 to 30, between 9:30 a.m. and 3 p.m. can sign up.

All weekend, the museum will have a hands-on showcase with a close look at Army uniforms and equipment from different eras of Army history. Hours during Memorial Day weekend for this showcase are 10 a.m. to 12 p.m. and 1 p.m. to 3 p.m. In addition, the Army Historical Foundation Book Sale will offer new and used military books May 27 to 29 from 9 a.m. to 5 p.m.

At 10 a.m. on May 30, a Memorial Day remembrance and moment of silence will be held in the museum lobby with a playing of taps. The museum will also observe a national moment of silence at 3 p.m. on May 30.

ViVa! Vienna!: May 28-30

This three-day weekend festival is hosted by the Rotary Club of Vienna in downtown Vienna. ViVa! Vienna! features rides, entertainment, vendors, and a Memorial Day ceremony. New this year is the Backstage BrewFest with beer, wine, food and live music at the Vienna Fire Station. The festival area is Church Street between Lawyers Road and Mill Street along with surrounding side streets.

"This year we are excited to be back to a regular ViVa! Vienna! with the normal rides/games from Cole Amusements, a wealth of quality entertainment on the Town Green and over 200 vendors on Church Street for the festival," said ViVa! Vienna! chair AJ Oskuie. "We are also excited to be introducing Backstage BrewFest at the Vienna Firehouse this year."

All proceeds from the event benefit over 70 local organizations through the Rotary Club of Vienna.

Art, Flowers, and Flavors Festival: May 29-30

This festival will introduce the privately owned National Botanic Garden in Chantilly to the public over Memorial Day weekend. For over 10 years, Peter and Beata Knop have been working to build the garden from reclaimed materials, providing sculptures, plants, flowers and elements like stone.

"They reshaped it into this very rare landscape where art and nature come together," said Ola Rokita, a festival participant and Polish bakery who runs Ola's Bakery.

Rather than simply opening to the public, the National Botanic Garden's festival will to the experience with participation from artists, food and wine vendors and live music.

"Its' going to be a walk-through art gallery with food and drink," said Rokita. "As you walk through this garden, you discover little stations along the way."

The garden is not typically open to the public. After the Art, Flowers, and Flavors Festival, the National Botanic Garden will only be open by appointment a few times per month.

Tickets cost $25 and come with three samples of wine, beer or chocolate.

Ringing In Hope: A Salute to Our Troops, 5K & 10K Race, 1K Freedom Fun Run: Monday, May 30

Walk, job or run to support the men and women of the armed forces in this 10K, 5K and 1K fun run in Ashburn. The event raises funds for Boulder Crest Foundation, which provides free retreats for combat veterans and their families. There will be over $5,000 in prizes awarded and other family fun such as team challenges, vendors, a photo booth, food from Chick-fil-A and Wegmans and race swag. The race will start and end on the grounds of Christian Fellowship Church, 44505 Atwater Drive, Ashburn.

Strawberry Jubilee: May 28-30

It's strawberry season at Loudoun County's Great Country Farms. To celebrate, this strawberry festival features live music, farm contests, wagon rides, food, games and of course strawberries in the farm market. Tickets do not include the cost of strawberries.

The article Memorial Day Weekend Events: Parades, Festivals Around Northern VA, DC appeared first on Vienna Patch.


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