The holidays have begun in earnest. Passing by a local shopping center revealed jammed parking lots and people hurrying from cars to stores and back again. Shopping on-line has picked up, too; be sure to have that credit card ready when you order!
You won’t need a credit card to attend the 11th Annual Holiday Town Gathering at the Mason District Governmental Center next Wednesday, December 6. This annual kick-off to the holidays is different than most town meetings. We’ll have refreshments and entertainment along with a few speeches and some door prizes (more prizes than speeches). This year’s musical performance will feature the Christopher Johnston Ensemble. Contributions (cash or checks) to purchase gifts for children at the Strawbridge Community Center in Mason District also will be accepted at the Town Gathering. The festivities start at 7:30 p.m., and I hope to see you there.
You also won’t need a credit card to participate in the Fairfax County Environ-mental Quality Advisory Council (EQAC) public hearing on Monday, December 11, at 7:30 p.m. in the Board Auditorium of the Fairfax County Government Center, located at 12000 Government Center Parkway in Fairfax. The public is encouraged to attend and share views on the state of the environment, and identify any environmental issues applicable to Fairfax County. Items considered by EQAC include water and air quality, noise, hazardous materials, stream valley protection, light and visual pollution, and use and preservation of ecological resources. EQAC members are volunteers from the community, appointed by the Board of Supervisors. Mason District is represented by Annandale resident Rachel Rifkind.
You might need a credit card at the Belvedere Craft Fair scheduled for this Saturday, December 2, from 9 a.m. until 4 p.m., at the school, 6540 Columbia Pike. Admission is free, and there will be approximately 75 vendors, food sales, and children’s activities. Last year’s event had lots of wonderful holiday crafts and jewelry, so you might just plan to do your holiday shopping and help the school at the same time.
Also on Saturday is the annual meeting of the Green Spring Master Gardeners, who are celebrating the fifth anniversary of the group. Green Spring Gardens Park is open during daylight hours, and the Horticultural Center has a variety of gifts for gardeners available for sale. The Manor House Gift Shop at Green Spring, a brief walk from the main building, features gifts with a tea motif to commemorate the teas held in the historic 18th century home nearly every week. They do take credit cards. Information about operating hours can be found at www.fairfaxcounty.gov/parks/gsgp. By the way, a stroll through the gardens at Green Spring is a great stress reliever during the holidays.