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City of Alexandria, VA City of Alexandria, VA
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Page updated Dec 11, 2009 3:00 PM
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Weekly Event Announcements for the City of Alexandria: December 12 – December 18, 2009

For Immediate Release: December 11, 2009

Saturday, December 12 – Kwanzaa Celebration and Film Screening
The Alexandria Black History Museum, 902 Wythe St., will host two free Kwanzaa programs. At 11 a.m., Brian Sales explores the history of Kwanzaa, performing the Libation Ceremony and leading a presentation of the holiday principles through illustrations and food samplings. At 4:30 p.m., award-winning filmmaker, M.K. Asante, Jr., presents his film, “The Black Candle: A Kwanzaa Celebration” (71 minutes). Narrated by Maya Angelou, it traces the holiday’s growth out of the Black Power Movement in the 1960s to its present-day reality as a global, pan-African holiday embraced by more than 40 million celebrants. A discussion follows the film screening. For more information, call 703.838.4356 or visit www.alexblackhistory.org. 

Saturday, December 12 – Holiday Concert in Old Town Alexandria
Enjoy the music of the season in Old Town Alexandria at a holiday concert at Market Square, 301 King St. At 1 p.m., Bell’s Angels and the St. John’s Lutheran Church Handbell Choir will provide holiday music, followed at 2 p.m. by the Alexandria Harmonizers, a barbershop musical group, who will also perform a selection of holiday favorites. For more information, call the Special Events Hotline at 703.883.4686 or visit alexandriava.gov/Recreation.

Saturday, December 12 – Silhouette Artist
Anne Leslie, a silhouette-cutting artist, will demonstrate her talent in this timeless portrait art at History Center & Museum Store, 101 North Union St., from noon to 3 p.m. Request a personal work of shadow portrait art—a one-of-a-kind holiday gift that is sure to become a family treasure!  While you’re there, choose from a great selection of gifts and stock up on beautiful household goods to add that extra special touch to your holiday home. For more information, please call 703.706.5262.

Saturday, December 12 – Christmas in Camp Open House
Get into the holiday spirit and learn how Christmas was observed during the Civil War by attending Fort Ward Museum’s annual Christmas in Camp Open House at the Fort Ward Museum and Historic Site, 4301 W. Braddock Rd., at 5 p.m. This popular family-oriented event features a patriotic Santa Claus, living history presentations, period music, Victorian decorations, refreshments, tours and crafts. The suggested donation is $2 for adults and $1 for children. For more information, call Susan Cumbey at 703.838.4848 or visit www.fortward.org. 
Saturday, December 12 – Annual City of Alexandria Cheerleading Exhibition
Attend the City’s Annual Cheerleading Exhibition at the T.C. Williams High School, 3330 King St., at 11 a.m. The exhibition features pre-teen and teen cheerleading teams from the Charles Barrett, Charles Houston, Cora Kelly, Mount Vernon, Nannie J. Lee, Patrick Henry and William Ramsay Recreation Centers.  Tickets are available for purchase at the door. For additional information, call 703.746.5402.
Sunday, December 13 – Holiday Concert in Old Town Alexandria
Enjoy the music of the season in Old Town Alexandria at a holiday concert at Market Square, 301 King St. The St. Matthews United Methodist Church Youth Handbell Choir will perform at 2 p.m., followed at 3 p.m. by the Alexandria Singers, who will also play holiday favorites. For more information, call the City’s Special Events hotline at 703.883.4686.  For more information, visit alexandriava.gov/Recreation.

Saturday, December 12 & Sunday, December 13 – Caroling for Cats
Join staff from the Animal Welfare League of Alexandria, volunteers and residents at the Vola Lawson Animal Shelter, 4101 Eisenhower Ave., for songs, snacks and “arfs and crafts!” The shelter will be open until midnight, so feel free to stop by for a late night snuggle with our shelter residents or a cup of cocoa and a sweet treat. For more information, visit www.alexandriaanimals.org.

Saturday, December 12 & Sunday, December 13 – Historic Alexandria Candlelight Tours 
Take a break from the fast pace of the season and experience the unique charm and history at Old Town Alexandria’s most popular holiday event. Tour Gadsby’s Tavern Museum, Carlyle House, Lee-Fendall House and the Apothecary Museum by candlelight and enjoy seasonal decorations, entertainment and light refreshments. Sunday features kid-friendly tours and a special activity! Tour times are from 6 p.m. to 9 p.m. on Saturday and 3 p.m. to 6 p.m. on Sunday. Cost is $20 for adults, $15 for seniors (65 and older), and $5 for children (ages 6-17). Reservations are recommended. For more information or to buy tickets, please visit www.historicalexandria.org or call 703.838.4242.

Coming Soon!

Thursday, December 31 – First Night Alexandria
Don't miss the best New Year's Eve party in the region! Alexandria will host 25 indoor venues with multiple stages featuring performances from 6:00 p.m. to fireworks at midnight! Tickets and additional information are available at www.firstnightalexandria.org.

Ongoing!

Annual Christmas Tree Sale 
The Annual Christmas Tree Sale to benefit the Alexandria Police Youth Camp is held by the Amtrak Station, 110 Callahan Dr. The sale will be ongoing, weeknights from 5 p.m. to 8 p.m. and every weekend from 10 a.m. to 8 p.m., until they are sold out!

Through Tuesday, December 15 – Alexandria Office on Women Seeks Donations for Children’s Holiday Party
Every year, the Alexandria Office on Women organizes a holiday party for mothers and children who have been recently served by the Domestic Violence Program. More than 100 families receive a bag of gifts, which they can take home, wrap and place under their tree. If you would like to make a donation, please bring unwrapped toys and gift cards to the Office on Women, 421 King Street, Suite 400 no later than December 15. We are also available to pick up donations if you are unable to bring them to our office. The deadline for delivery or pick-up of unwrapped gifts is Friday, December 11. For more information, call 703.838.4911.

Through Friday, December 18 – Community Partners for Children Holiday Toy Drive
Each holiday season, Community Partners for Children (CPC) collects toys for deserving kids in the Alexandria area, and asks the community for help. Make a cash contribution by sending your check to Community Partners for Children, P.O. Box 2738, Alexandria, VA 22301. Leave a doll, toy truck, game, or any other new toy for a deserving child or a grocery gift card at any CPC donation box. More than two dozen donation boxes are conveniently located throughout the City of Alexandria. In order to find out the nearest donation box, contact Pat Miller at pmiller1806@comcast.net or 703.683.2570. For more information on upcoming volunteer opportunities, contact Kendra Chambers at kendrajanedc@aol.com or 703.717.0373.

Through Thursday, December 24 – Alexandria Fire Department Toys for Tots Drive
The Alexandria Fire Department (AFD), is collecting toys for needy families and underprivileged children during the 2009 holiday season. For many years, AFD has partnered with the U.S. Marine Corps to support its Toys for Tots Campaign. Residents can drop off new, unwrapped toys at any Alexandria fire station through December 24. Donated toys may not be used as weapons or considered to be weapons (i.e., toy guns or knives of any kind). The toys are intended to go to children ages 0-17 years of age. For more information, visit www.dctoysfortots.org.

Donors Needed for Department of Human Services’ (DHS) Holiday Sharing Program
Be part of the holiday spirit and reach out to eligible low income families, foster children, and elderly or disabled citizens through the DHS Holiday Sharing Program. You will get “wish lists” for children or senior citizens, which will include necessary clothing (jeans, warm jacket), a toy or recreational item, a book and perhaps one family request (used computer, towels, pots and pans). Gift cards from stores such as Old Navy, Target, and Best Buy are also needed for teens in foster care. To sign up online, visit alexandriava.gov/HolidaySharing. For more information, e-mail holidaysharing@alexandriava.gov or call 703.746.5663.

“Tramping and Trailing with the Girl Scouts” Exhibition
A new exhibition at The Lyceum, 201 S. Washington St., blends historical photographs, artifacts and reflections to tell the story of Girl Scouting in Washington metropolitan area. “Tramping and Trailing with the Girl Scouts” features a collection of Girl Scout uniforms from the 1910s, 1930s and 1960s; Brownie items from as early as 1937; a display of cookie fundraising materials; and extensive camping and hiking exhibits; and official Girl Scout gear including a canteen, collapsible cup, pocket knife, compass and more. Suggested admission is $2 and the exhibition is open through May 31, 2010. The Lyceum, is open Monday through Saturday, 10 a.m. to 5 p.m., and on Sundays, 1 p.m. to 5 p.m. For more information, please visit www.alexandriahistory.org or call 703.838.4994.

Open through Saturday, January 9, 2010 – Spirits in a Bottle Exhibition
Artist Barbara Hardaway decorated more than a hundred Arizona Tea bottles for this exhibition of decorative expressions of an ancient African tradition. This whimsical show at the Alexandria Black History Museum, 902 Wythe St., pays homage to the 9th- and 10th-century Congolese tradition of adorning the ends of tree branches with colorful bottles that would catch the sunlight. Hardaway updated this ritual by festooning her bottles with feathers, fabric, beads, netting, ribbons and seashells. The museum is open Tuesday through Saturday, 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. Suggested admission is $2. For more information, please visit www.alexblackhistory.org or call 703.838.4356.