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La Bella Strada – An Italian Chalk Art Festival

On Saturday, May 12th come on down to Mount Vernon Avenue to view and create some vibrant chalk art. The third annual La Bella Strada Street Painting Festival will bring artists from around the region to create masterpieces up and down the Avenue.  The event is modeled after an ancient Italian art form.

It is a great way to meet with friends and observe the vibrant colors!  We just hope it doesn’t rain! (The rain date is Sunday, May 13th.)

All proceeds from the event will help fund the creation of an outdoor garden, play space, and education programs for The Del Ray Montessori School. A $100(or more) tax-deductible donation gets you your very own 5 x 5 foot square on Mount Vernon Avenue and artist-grade chalk.

Click here for more information including a list of artists who will be in attendance.

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Events, House

2018 House and Garden Tour

The 2018 House and Garden Tour will be Saturday, May 12, 2018 11:00am- 5:00pm.  The event is self-guided and will go on rain or shine.  You should start at Nectar Del Ray (106 Hume Ave) to pick up a tour brochure and wristband that will serve as your entrance pass to the homes on the tour.

The Del Ray Citizens Association event serves as a fundraiser for Alexandria neighborhood projects.  This year all proceeds will benefit the Nancy Dunning Memorial Garden and the Del Ray Gateway Project.

The 12 homes on this year’s tour range from a row house renovation to a single family new construction and more.  Walk through the city to see an old farmhouse renovated for a young family, an open concept home with an inspiring art collection, and a catalog home built in 1917 and sold for $1,396.50.

Get inspired by the work of local architects, builders, and interior designers.

Tickets are $30 and can be purchased at a reduced price by DRCA members at the May membership meeting. Click here to purchase tickets.

You can also volunteer for a shift as a docent at one of the homes and receive a free ticket.

Lifestyle

Splash Park Proposed For Del Ray

It is looking like the “gateway” into Del Ray will be transformed into a splash park and memorial garden to honor the late Nancy Dunning!

The corner of Mount Vernon and Commonwealth Avenues currently holds a park and the former Colasanto Pool, which has been closed since 2010.  But the Del Ray Community Partnership is hoping to transform it into Gateway Park.

Nancy Dunning, a.k.a. the “The Queen of Del Ray,” was an Alexandria real estate agent who was credited with bringing new business to Mount Vernon Avenue and the surrounding neighborhood. Sadly, she was killed in 2003 inside her Del Ray home.  It would be appropriate and fitting if the Nancy Dunning Garden becomes a beautiful entrance into Del Ray

According to the city plans, the spray park could be open by 2020.  Before that time, it would be a green space available to everyone.

For more information on the project, visit the Del Ray Gateway’s website or their Facebook page.

Events

5th Annual Del Ray Chili Cook Off and Beer Tasting

The Fifth Annual Del Ray Chili Cook Off & Beer Tasting is this Saturday, February 10 from 6:00PM – 8:00PM at the Commonwealth Academy Gym, 1321 Leslie Avenue.  The event is sponsored by the Del Ray Citizen’s Association with proceeds going toward their Spring Build Project with Rebuilding Together Alexandria, which helps transform the lives of low-income homeowners by improving the safety and health of their homes and revitalizes communities.

Single entries or teams (up to three people) from Del Ray can enter the Cook Off.   Awards will be given in three categories: meat, veggie, and people’s choice.  Judges will be looking at taste, aroma, texture, after-taste and heat.  But this doesn’t mean the hottest chili will win.  All of last year’s winners generously donated back their $250 awards.

To learn more about the rules and fill out an application, click here.

To buy tickets are to just make a donation click here.