HomeAid, Madison Homes Improve Home for the Disabled

With the help of Builder Captain Madison Homes and seven trade partners, HomeAid completed a $44,000 renovation project for Community Residences, which offers individuals with disabilities—many of whom would otherwise be homeless—supportive housing and the physical, mental and emotional services needed to facilitate independent and dignified living within the community.

“The improvements made—entirely new flooring on the first level and better accessibility in the bathrooms—have made an enormous difference already for our residents,” said Jeff Scannell, facility manager at Community Residences. “Many of the floors were worn and sloping, which posed mobility issues, and the addition of step-in showers and grab bars have made our bathrooms safer and more accessible. Many of the individuals have disabilities, and we strive to give them a more fulfilled life through living in the community, being amongst peers, and having more freedom and opportunities through a safe home environment. This project has helped us better meet all of those goals. When you walk into this home, it doesn’t feel like a hospital or a ‘facility’ … it feels like a warm, welcoming home.”

Madison Homes has led many HomeAid projects, and with Madison Homes President Russ Rosenberger also serving on HomeAid Northern Virginia’s Board and as HomeAid’s 2006 and 2013 president, giving back to the community is an integral part of the company’s culture. For Charles Battle, project manager for Madison Homes, however, the project with HomeAid was his first.

“It was a great experience,” he said, “and allowed me to also invest in this aspect of our company’s philanthropic efforts. It was great to see the original proposal revised so that we could replace 100 percent of the flooring on the first level, and it’s testament to our trade partners to see the entire project completed on-time and on-budget, even with the home being occupied the entire time we were there. It was a complicated schedule to get residents and furniture moved as we worked, but we did it. I was honored to be involved.”

Don’t Miss the Chocolate Lovers Festival this Weekend!

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Don’t miss the Chocolate Lovers Festival this weekend! An annual Fairfax tradition featuring all things chocolate, including the Taste of Chocolate, Chocolate Challenge, Kiwanis Chocolate Chip Pancake Breakfast, open houses at historic buildings and much more.

To learn more about the Chocolate Lovers Festival and download the full schedule of events, go to www.chocolatefestival.net.

Our Favorite Date Night Spots

With Valentine’s Day right around the corner, we’ve got date night on the mind. While the official most romantic night of the year is a few weeks away, there is no wrong time to treat your other half to a night out. Here are our favorite date night spots near Eleven Oaks in Fairfax.

Bastille

A french bistro that offers a contemporary spin on French cuisine, using seasonal, locally sourced and farm fresh ingredients. They are “Embracing the casual elegance of Parisian dining.”

Bollywood Bistro

A contemporary Indian fusion restaurant specializing in North Indian cuisine,  where Bollywood music plays and the walls are adorned with photos of Indian movie stars.

The Wine House

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Bistro-style dining, where the dishes of fresh, local ingredients are designed to accentuate the selection of wines from around the world. Wine lovers can also purchase bottles from an extensive collection of more than 500 wines from around the world.

Trummer’s on Main

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This “creative American” restaurant features a lounge with some of the best cocktails in the area (including the signature Titanic) and a formal dining room with seasonally changing cuisine.

Villa Mozart

Villa Mozart uses ingredients from local farmers to complement the chef’s homemade pastas and hearty dishes from his beloved South Tyrolean region in Northern Italy.

Pinterest’s Top Christmas Cookie Recipes

Office potlucks, family parties and Santa’s midnight snack… there are plenty of reasons to bake cookies this holiday season. We have scoured Pinterest to find the best holiday cookie recipes. All have been shared over 100,000 times, so you know they have stood up to the test and are truly the best.

Red Velvet Cream Cheese Thumbprints

Shares: 107 thousand

Chocolate Crinkles

Shares: 140 thousand

Melt-in-your-Mouth Eggnog Cookies

Shares: 251 thousand

Confetti Cake Batter Cookies

Shares: 252 thousand

Candy Cane Kiss Cookies

Shares: 432 thousand

White Chocolate Dipped Ginger Cookies

Shares: 454 thousand

 

Holiday Events in Northern Virginia

With Thanksgiving just a week away, we about to enter holiday season and a full calendar of holiday events in Northern Virginia. We’ve rounded up a list of the best events near Eleven Oaks to get you in the holiday spirit.

Tyson’s Corner Annual Tree Lighting
November 20, 6-8 pm
http://tysonscornercenter.com/Events/Details/385772?startDate=11/20/2015&back=

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Reston Holiday Parade, Tree Lighting and Sing-a-long
November 27, 8 am – 11 pm
http://www.restontowncenter.com/events/signature-events/

Northern Virginia Handcrafters Guild Thanksgiving Art and Craft Show
November 27-29
http://www.nvhg.org/9-uncategorised/156-thanksgiving-art-and-craft-show

Meadowlark’s Winter Walk of Lights
November 13 – January 3
http://winterwalkoflights.com/

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Bull Run Festival of Lights & Holiday Village
November 18 – January 3
http://www.bullrunfestivaloflights.com/

Christmas at Mount Vernon
November 27 – January 6
http://www.mountvernon.org/plan-your-visit/activities-tours/christmas-at-mount-vernon

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Ice Rink at Tyson’s Corner Center
November 13 – March 6
http://www.tysonscornercenter.com/Events/TysonsCornerCenter_IceRink

Ice Skating at Reston Town Center Pavilion
November 27-March 16
http://www.restontowncenter.com/amenities/ice-skating/

Best Halloween Festivities

Halloween is right around the corner, and Northern Virginia offers many great Halloween events. We’ve rounded up some of the best events near Fairfax that will be sure to get you in the holiday spirit!

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Best Festival:

Tysons Fall Harvest Festival

http://tysonspartnership.org/event-calendar/pumpkin-gathering-0/

October 17-18, 24-25

Stroll through the arts and crafts booths and taste craft beers and 10 of Virginia’s best wineries. Also enjoy the largest hay pyramid in DC, petting zoo, pumpkin bowling, and more!

 

Best Farm:

Cox Farms Fall Festival

http://www.coxfarms.com/fallfestival.aspx

Open daily through November 3

There’s an abundance of fun family activities here, including hayrides, slides, animals and the Cornundrum, a winding corn path filled with pirates, caves, jungles and more.

 

Best Kid-Friendly:

Reston Zoo Boo

http://www.restonzoo.com/Events/SpecialEvents/ZOOBOO.aspx

October 24-25, October 31-November 1

Head to Reston Zoo for acres of kid-friendly events, including a trick-or-treat trail, pumpkin patch, tractor rides and face painting. Meet alligators, spiders and more at the touch station.

 

Best Haunted House:

Bradley Farms Haunted House

http://www.bfhauntedhouse.com/index.html

October 23-24

Not sure if it’s scary enough? They say, “Each year we have many people unable to make it through the entire Haunted House.” For younger (or more scared) participants, try Saturday afternoon’s family-friendly Halloween carnival, with a brighter, less scary haunted house, trick-or-treating and carnival style games.

orchard

Best Orchard:

Stribling Orchard

http://www.striblingorchard.com/index.html

Open through early November

30 acres of apple trees offer 6 varieties of pick-your-own apples and 9 varieties of already picked apples, as well as pumpkins. Stop by the Harvest House for cider, honey, jams, jellies, salsas, hot sauces, local cheese, local eggs, Virginia peanuts, cookbooks, fresh baked goods and more.

 

Best Pumpkin Patch:

St. Thomas’ Annual Pumpkin Patch

http://www.stthomasmcleanva.org/pumpkin-patch

Open starting October 10

Pick your own pumpkin while helping the community. All proceeds from pumpkin sales go to charities in Northern Virginia working to end hunger and homelessness.

Fall Activities Near Fairfax

As the weather turns cooler and the leaves begin to change, this is the perfect time to explore the beautiful community of Fairfax. Now that fall is coming into full swing, festivals and farmers markets are all over the county. Here is a roundup of fall weekend activities near Eleven Oaks in Fairfax.

Farmers market

Farmers Markets

The Fairfax County Park Authority has 11 sites throughout the county that host weekly farmers markets, and there are several other farmers markets sponsored by independent organizations.  These markets feature local fruits, vegetables, flowers, baked goods, eggs, honey, cider and cheeses. All products come from vendors located within 125 miles of Fairfax County, and some vendors are based just a few blocks from the markets. Find a farmers market here.

Live Music at The Winery at Bull Run

Take in the picturesque scenery while enjoying the free live music offered every weekend. On Friday evenings and several Saturday and Sunday afternoons throughout the fall, hear some favorites from the local music scene. See the live music schedule here

Amazing Farm Fun Fall Festival

This festival at Ticonderoga Farms is open daily 9am – 6pm from September 19 to November 8. Enjoy the petting zoo, hay ride, corn maze and more. Learn more here

Cox Farms Fall Festival

Visit 90 acres of animals, hay rides, mazes and more. There is also a Festival Market full of pumpkins, local apples, sweet cider, kettle corn, pies and more. On the final weekend of the festival, come for Pumpkin Madness, where you can help smash, squish and throw all of the leftover pumpkins from the season. Find out more here

 

Stops on your Walk to Old Town Fairfax

Eleven Oaks is less than a mile away from the shops and restaurants of Old Town Fairfax, just a 15 minute walk down George Mason Drive and University Boulevard. So grab a coffee, head out for a walk and explore the area. Here are some of the places you’ll hit on your walk to Old Town Fairfax.

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My Vegan Baker
Order from this bakery on Courthouse Drive for vegan muffins, cupcakes and other desserts. Need gluten free? No problem. Everything here is made to order.

Second Chance 1 Thrift Shop
Take a minute to browse for collectibles, antiques and other treasures in the shop located in an old house off Chain Bridge Road. All proceeds go to the Humane Society of Fairfax County for medical care and other needs for rescued animals. You can also help by donating household items, toys, books and clean clothing.

Red Hot & Blue
Grab a bite at Red Hot & Blue on Chain Bridge Road, a local favorite featuring the perfect combination of Memphis-style barbeque and great blues music. The menu includes award-winning ribs, wings, and the best burger in Northern Virginia according to an online poll in June 2015.

Hard Times Cafe
Want to catch a Nats, Redskins or Caps game? Stop by Hard Times Cafe on Chain Bridge Road for chili, wings, burgers, nachos, ribs and more while you watch one of their many flat screen HDTVs.

Fairfax City Bike Trails
Fairfax County offers over 500 miles of trail, and the Fairfax City Bike Trail is just steps away off of Breckenridge Lane. Hop on your bike and tour the city’s seemingly endless bike trails.

IMMEDIATE DELIVERIES

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