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Archive for June, 2010

Del Ray Celebrates July First Thursday with Health and Wellness

Del Ray will celebrate July First Thursday, today, July 1, with a theme of Health and Wellness –  along with the traditional nod to the Fourth of July holiday –  from 6:00pm – 9:00pm.

There will be music at the Del Ray Farmer’s Market location (Mt. Vernon Ave and East Oxford) by The Legend of Lummy Hallin featuring our own Fox Vernon.  Dozens of neighbors and businesses have baked and donated cakes, pies, cookies, etc. for an old-fashioned Cake Walk. 

The “walk”  will run about every 15 minutes from 6:00pm till 8:30pm or until the cakes run out!  Not familiar with a Cake Walk? 

It’s similar to playing musical chairs and will be done in groups – groups of children, groups of strollers, groups of adults -well, you get the picture. 

There will even be a group for Del Ray’s favorite four legged friends, although they will get doggie treats, not cakes.

July First Thursday will also include a fun scavenger hunt to eight local businesses on Mt. Vernon that will provide heath and wellness screenings, fun activities and demonstrations (yoga, massage, etc.). 

At each of the eight stops you will get a stamp for your ‘entry’ form.  The first 50 completed entries will receive goody bags and all entries will be eligible for several grand prizes.

Want to know more about Del Ray and First Thursday?  Check out this great video clip from a visit by Channel 5, Fox News.


Posted by Michael Bergin | Currently 2 Comments »

The Fourth of July in Northern Virginia – Where to Go and What to Do

With the Fourth of July rapidly approaching it’s time to start making plans for the weekend, especially if out-of-town guests are on hand. 

Of course the concert and fireworks on the Mall is the big attraction but if you are looking for other venues in Northern Virginia, here is a check list of where to go and what to do:

Culpeper – A 5K race starts the day at 8am while food, historical reenactments and a battle of the bands set up at Yowell Meadow Park.  A parade takes to the streets at 4pm and fireworks start at 9:15pm. (FREE)

McLean – Langley High School is the site for food, field games and family friendly band “Chairmen of the Board.”  Fireworks at 9:15pm. (FREE)

Mount Vernon – Revolutionary War reenactments, a reading of the Declaration of Independence and daytime fireworks (12:45pm).  Events run from 8am – 5pm.  Admission $15, $7 for ages 6-11, free for ages 5 and under.

And now for the big one – the Fourth of July on the National Mall in Washington, D.C.

Start your day with the Independence Day Parade at 11:45am, then take in the Smithsonian Folk Life Festival, and special Fourth of July activities at the National Archives and the White House Visitors Center.  Public access to the Mall begins at 10:00am with all visitors required to enter via a security checkpoint.

Choose one of two locations for your evening concert –

The U.S. Navy Band performs on the grounds of the Washington Monument starting at 6pm.  The concert will feature the U.S. Navy Concert Band, the Sea Chanters chorus, and the Cruisers, a rock and top-40 ensemble.  The Navy Band Commodores Jazz Ensemble takes the stage at 8pm and concludes at 9:10pm for the fireworks display.

The National Symphony Orchestra and several pop artists will perform patriotic music on the West Lawn of the U.S. Capitol Building starting at 8:00pm, (Admittance begins at 3:00pm)

Fireworks at approximately 9:15pm.  Not sure you want to travel into the District for the fireworks? 

Check out these local spots for viewing from the Virginia side: 

So there you have it, The Fourth of July in Northern Virginia – Where to Go and What to Do.


Posted by Michael Bergin | Currently 3 Comments »

Six Things NOT to Ask Your Realtor®

Most of the time you will find me writing about all the things you should ask and need to ask your Realtor®.  But today I am going to talk about the six things NOT to ask your Realtor®.

As a licensed professional Realtor®, I am bound by a Code of Ethics, by local and state laws and by the Federal Fair Housing Act.

Under the Federal Fair Housing Act I am prohibited from addressing any issues around:

Read the rest of this entry »

Posted by Michael Bergin | Currently No Comments »

Sunday News Roundup for the Week of June 21

Here are some of our favorite articles and our Sunday News roundup for the Week of June 21.

Washington Post:
Climbing Wall, Zip Lines and More at National Harbor
Prices and Interest Rates Favor Condo Buyers
Marquette, MI and Huntsville, AL –  National Trust for Historic Preservation’s Distinctive Destinations 2010

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Posted by Michael Bergin | Currently No Comments »

Del Ray Music Festival 2010

The fourth annual Del Ray Music Festival took off today under bright, sunny skies.  A large tent was strategically placed front and center and hay bales (for sitting) were scattered over the field. 

But lots of folks took matters into their own hands with blankets, folding chairs, and picnic baskets.


Local reggae band Antero had the crowd on its feet.



The master stroke though?  A “rain tent” for a quick cool down.

Watch out Wolf Trap, Del Ray is the place to be!


Posted by Michael Bergin | Currently No Comments »

Breaking Into A Garage in Six Seconds

Although garages are not a huge part of urban living, especially here in Del Ray or Old Town Alexandria, we still tend to think of them as safe havens for our cars, tools, bikes and other household items. 

Unfortunately that’s really not true. Want proof? This video shows someone breaking into a garage in just six seconds.

YouTube Preview Image

It may be a petty thief or it may be someone intent on doing bodily harm.  Don’t count on your garage door to protect you:

It may be that none of these things will deter a serious intruder but at least you can slow them down.


Thanks to Nevin Williams of First Priority Financial for this information.

Posted by Michael Bergin | Currently 2 Comments »

Del Ray’s Dairy Godmother Voted “Best’ Ice Cream” in Local Poll

Del Ray’s own Dairy Godmother has been voted “Best Ice Cream” in a poll conducted by WTOP radio.  With over 7,400 votes cast, the Dairy Godmother took 15% of the total, edging out Carl’s Ice Cream in Fredericksburg.

A long time Dell Ray staple, the Dairy Godmother is known for its creamy custard, unusual flavors, and presidential visits.

YouTube Preview Image

Congratulations Liz,


Posted by Michael Bergin | Currently No Comments »

City of Alexandria Approves Potomac Yard Redevelopment and New Metro Construction

In a long anticipated move, the City of Alexandria has approved the final phase of the massive Potomac Yard Redevelopment. Known more formally as the North Potomac Yard Small Area plan, the vote provides the framework to turn the Potomac Yard Retail Center into a 69-acre, 7.5 million sq. ft., mixed-use, transit-oriented development.

The retail center, a huge draw for District and Virginia residents alike is anchored on one end by Shoppers Food Warehouse and on the other end by Target.  Other shops include PetSmart, Barnes & Noble, and Staples.  These stores will be rebuilt/restructured/redesigned according to development guidelines.

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Posted by Michael Bergin | Currently 1 Comment »

City of Alexandria Announces Parking Meter Increases

The City of Alexandria has announced parking meter increases that will take the hourly rate from $1.00 to $1.75.  That’s a lot of quarters folks!

If it’s any consolation, meters in the District of Columbia are $2 an hour.

The parking meter increase is just part of an overall increase in several departments in response to the City’s current economic challenges and the increased cost of providing services to residents and the public.

Other increases include:

My suggestion –  bike, use the Trolley,  park in a garage – or better still, let me find you a house in Old Town and then you can walk everywhere!  Call me at 703.927.4554.


Posted by Michael Bergin | Currently No Comments »

Green Living Energy Tips for June

With sweltering temperatures already upon us, it’s a great time to look at a few green energy tips for the month of June.

1) A simple way to minimize a swimming pool’s environmental impact is to use a cover, even during the summer when the pool is not in use. A cover can reduce water evaporation by 90-95%, meaning less water is needed to fill the pool. A pool cover can also reduce the evaporation of cleaning chemicals like chlorine into greenhouse gases, and decrease your chemical use by up to 50%.

2) Make your summer meals energy friendly by prepping the grill by rubbing it with an onion instead of using a chemical spray; using propane, which is a fossil fuel but burns cleaner than wood or charcoal; having guests bring potluck meals in reusable Tupperware containers; offering beverages in larger containers with reusable cups instead of filling your trash with a lot of empty cans, bottles and plastic cups; and providing guests with recycled-plastic durable dishware and reusable bamboo cutlery.

3) Install a clothesline and start drying your laundry outdoors if you haven’t done so. It is better for the environment and conserves energy; many households who air dry shave more than $25 a month from their electricity bill. Clothes and linens smell better when dried outdoors than in the dryer, and you don’t have to worry about racing to get the clothes out of the dryer before they wrinkle. Clothes that are air-dried also last longer.

4) Using the correct mowing technique can decrease your lawn’s water usage. Use a mulch blade and leave grass clipping on the lawn, to keep moisture in and provide nitrogen. Set your cutting depth to leave 2 and-a-half to 3 inches of grass. Taller grass will protect the stems from strong sunlight and ensure a stronger root system. Less water will evaporate, meaning it’s less you have to water your lawn.

You may not be able to do all of these things but even one of them can help the environment and help you cut back your energy costs.

Don’t have a lawn to mow or a place to dry your clothes?  Call me at 703.927.4554 and let’s change that right away.


Posted by Michael Bergin | Currently 2 Comments »

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