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Old Town Alexandria is a great place to live, work or visit. It was founded in the early 1700's, so it's got an old historic district near the water front of the Potomac River and the newer section, "The West End" which is at the other end of town. In all it runs along King Street from the waterfront for about 17-19 blocks to the King Street Metro. Bordered on the South side is the Carlyle District, which is the newer part of town and which is home to the new Patent and Trademark Office and several large corporations, which have chosen to call Alexandria, home. The free trolley runs up and down King St. from the metro to the waterfront. There are many wonderful, old historic homes and commercial buildings. There are history tours and ghost tourse daily and nightly. The big one is of course around Halloween, so be sure to catch one of the Ghost Tours then. Big Halloween party as they block off Lee Street and it's pretty awsome. And be sure to visit the Farmers Market on Saturday mornings during decent weather and throughout the Spring, Summer, Fall.
The water taxi runs daily from the foot of King St over to the new National Harbor and Gaylord Hotel and also to Georgetown and Mount Vernon. The Nina cruise lines runs lunch and dinner cruises from the foot of Prince Street. There's never a dull moment around here and there are tons of wonderful shops, boutiques, hotels, and restaurants! Be sure to stop in the Warehouse Bar and Gril and look for at the characatures on the wall - LOL - they do that for the regulars. There are a lot of good bars around town from those catering to the younger crowd to quieter ones. Some offer happy hours and drink specials. 219 has live jazz and music most nights and it's at 219 King St. Las Tapas has live Flamenco dancing on select nights. Several other places offer live music and dancing, so there is plenty to do while you are here.
Starting the day after Thanksgiving is the lighting of the Christmas Tree and concert in Market Square. The 1st Saturday of December is the Christmas Parade, Home Tours, and Boat Parade. Friday evening is the famous Taste of Scotland event, which is always a crowd pleaser. Throughout December there are numerous concerts and events. Mount Vernon does a candlelight tour of the mansion from late November through Mid-December. The annual Mount Vernon Wine Fesitval is usually in Sept or October. Check their site for dates.
Old Town hosts an annual Art Festival which is the 2nd weekend in September. It's really fabulous with super quality art, sculpture and exhibits. Artists from all over display their works at what I consider reasonable prices for the quality of the work. Early in 2011 they will have the President's Day Parade, the St. Patricks Day Parade (1st Saturday of March), Restaurant Week (August), and other events continue throughout the year. Also, visit the Little Theatre of Alexandria for Broadway level productions in a small theatre with cheap seats.
For more information about Old Town visit the online Visitors Center web site and you can view the calendar of events, see hotels, make dinner reservations and more. Here's the link: