Art Festival in Old Town Alexandria VA

Will and Julie at Art Festival
At the 2009 Alexandria Art Festival

This weekend Julie and I went to Old Town with the Alexandria Fun with Friends Group to enjoy the Alexandria Art Festival. The Art Festival occurs every year around this time and features artists and craftsmen from around the area.

2009 Art Festival
2009 Art Festival in Old Town Alexandria

King Street closes to vehicular traffic and artists set-up stalls in the street. It’s an easy way to enjoy lots of art from lots of folks. The weather was very co-operative, neither too hot nor too cold.

Old Town Alexandria
2009 Old Town Alexandria

This 12 foot tall image of a koi caught my eye, as did many smaller pieces.

Arts Festival in Old Town Alexandria

I found that my camera was drawn to the larger pieces, but this is probably because I knew they would photograph well. There were many smaller items for sale too. However, many of us felt that this year’s festival seemed to offer more pieces that would be welcomed in a restaurant or hotel lobby than usual and a few number of the smaller pieces that look nice in a home.


There were several musicians playing up and down the street. This harpist sang like an angel, but I have to admit that my favorite was the steel drum player.

King Street
People walking King Street during Art Festival

We walked all the way up to Washington Street before turning around and making way back to the Potomac. After some discussion the group voted to eat at the Charthouse. At the Charthouse, the ladies had a little wine and we enjoyed some relaxed conversation and then dinner. For my part, I think the food at the Charthouse is good, but not great. Even though it’s a little pricey, it’s worth it because of the pleasant views of the Potomac that are offered.


Will Nesbitt About the AuthorWill Nesbitt is the principal broker of Condo Alexandria and Nesbitt Realty. Will specializes in condos, townhouses and single family residences in Alexandria, Arlington, Fairfax County, Crystal City, and Kingstowne. Will resides in Belle Haven Estates just outside Alexandria VA in Fairfax County.

The Many Musicians of Old Town

If you like street music, then you’ll find no better spot to wander than Old Town Alexandria. Through-out the week, especially on weekends, musicians gather in Old Town at street corners and near the waterfront to play music for tips and applause. Most are highly talented professionals, some are learning to play their instrument in front of a crowd. I enjoy them both in different ways.

Here in Old Town Alexandria, you’ll find everything from a lonely saxophone, to steel drums to an entire band. Below I’ve collected a few photos to give you a taste of Old Town’s many musicians.


This foursome was phenomenal singing and playing old time mountain music. It was a great throwback to the Carters because the gal in the front on the guitar was a great singer. The banjo player and bass were on point, and I love the texture that the mandolin (seated behind guitar) provided.

Glass Harp

The glass harp as played by Jamie Turner is an old town treat one simply must hear in person to appreciate.


This miss not only strummed the harp to perfection but also sang beautifully.

waterfront musicans

At the waterfront behind the Torpedo Factory there are often a few soloists serving up music for passers-by.

banjo and guitar

I heard some fine picking and strumming from this pair.

Properties in Old Town Alexandria

819 Water Pl

WATERFRONT COMMUNITY. 4 level TH in move-in condition with fresh paint, new carpet, refinished floors and updated baths. Garage plus covered parking for 2 cars. Family room adjacent to charming kitchen walks out to private patio. Master bedroom boasts vaulted ceiling & large WIC. Home situated on same block as the river and park. Bicycle trail, health club, and 5 restaurants in next block. [Rivergate - $865,000]

1210 Queen St #7

Light-filled, open and bright Penthouse with 3 terraces and sunset views. Ideally located, 1 block to King St & EZ access to Metro. Gourmet kitchen w/ high-end SS appliances & granite counters. Hardwood floors, glass-enclosed shower, and contemporary upgrades throughout. Historic building, Green/LEED certified. W/D conveys. [Cromley Lofts - $504,990]

1600 Prince St #213

2 blocks to King St. Metro/totally reno 2BR,2BA+Den/large windows full length of condo including SGD to balcony/plantation shutters/brazillian cherry floors/mahoganycabinets/crown moldings/GE Profile SS appliances/Whirlpool Duet Full size W/D/new HVAC/recessed litghting/all closets installed by Closets By Design/pk.s #77/owner requests Monument Title to do settlement/Open House-7-15/1-4 PM/parking [1600 Prince Street - $649,900]

1407 Prince St

Brick Victorian with old pine floors, wood burning fireplace, washer/dryer upstairs. Partial basement for storage. Fenced rear yard with patio and alley access. Close to King Street Metro, shops, restaurants and Whole Foods Market! [Old Town - $615,000]

801 Pitt St S #229

End unit condominium in popular Saint Asaph Square. Large private patio is ideal for dog owners, gardening, grilling and entertaining outdoors. A second entry is just steps to the unit's parking space and close to the pool and neighborhood. Saint Asaph has a pool, newly redecorated lobbies and hallways and is located just a block to neighborhood restaurants and shops. Great Old Town location. [St Asaph Square - $389,900]

501 Slaters Ln #1411

ALL UTILITIES INCL! Beautiful Penthouse w/ Panoramic View! Gorgeous Day or Night! Long Balcony, Floor to Ceiling Windows! Best Remodel in Building! Open kitchen with Bar Seating. SS Appl - Sub-Zero fridge, Bosch DW, and Wine Cooler. ALL Updated - Baths, Lighting, Floors, Windows & Double Sliding Doors! Custom closets. Garage Spot avail for $18K. Mins to Old Town! 7 mins to airport,12 mins to DC! [Marina Towers - $525,000]

418 Oronoco St

Pendleton model four level townhome with Rooftop Terrace in historic Old Town Alexandria. Located 11 blocks to Braddock metro, two blocks to Trader Joe's, and 3 blocks to Founders Park and the waterfront. All the charm of a historic neighborhood with the comforts of a newer home. Walk-in closet, luxury bath, hardwood floors throughout. [Chatham Square - $939,900]


Will Nesbitt


About the AuthorWill Nesbitt is the principal broker of Condo Alexandria and Nesbitt Realty. Will specializes in condos, townhouses and single family residences in Alexandria, Arlington, Fairfax County, Crystal City, and Kingstowne. Will resides in Belle Haven Estates just outside Alexandria VA in Fairfax County.

How much is a view worth?

Pentagon City
Pentagon City as seen from Arlington Ridge in Arlington VA

When you're shopping for a home, how do you price a view? The view above is from a balcony at the Representative overlooking Pentagon City in Arlington County. Does this view make this condominium home more valuable? If so, how much more valuable?

Montebello condominiums
Many condos at Montebello have excellent views.

Like the Representative, Montebello sits atop the ridge overlooking the Potomac. Much of the best property in Northern VA is found on this ridge, because the elevation provides excellent vistas of the Potomac and the city.

westward view from Alexandria House
View of Masonic Temple and the shady streets of Old Town

The Alexandria House is not on the ridge, but down by the Potomac and surrounded by the smaller structures of Old Town Alexandria. Its balconies provide great views of the city and the river.

view from Port Royal
The Potomac River as seen from Port Royal in Old Town

Who's to say what a great view is anyway? Some people like the city view. Some folks prefer a nature view. Some folks like the monuments. And others couldn't care less about the view.

For myself, I never judge a view by standing at a window. Because when you live in a home, you don't stand at the window. You pass through rooms and halls on the way to do life's errands. I judge a view from the center of the room, or when seated at the couch. But in the end, it's all subjective. A view costs more, on that we all agree. But the value of a view is only known when the price a buyer will pay intersects with the amount a seller will accept.

Will Nesbitt About the Author --- Will Nesbitt is the principal broker of Condo Alexandria and Nesbitt Realty. Will specializes in condos, townhouses and single family residences in Alexandria, Arlington, Fairfax County, Crystal City, and Kingstowne. Will resides in Belle Haven Estates just outside Alexandria VA in Fairfax County.

French Provincial style

Houses with garage
Kingstowne is in Alexandria VA

Balance and symmetry are the ruling characteristics of this formal style. Homes are often brick with detailing in copper or slate. Windows and chimneys are symmetrical and perfectly balanced, at least in original versions of the style. Defining features include a steep, high, hip roof; balcony and porch balustrades; rectangle doors set in arched openings; and double French windows with shutters. Second-story windows usually have a curved head that breaks through the cornice.

The design had its origins in the style of rural manor homes, or chateaus, built by the French nobles during the reign of Louis XIV in the mid-1600s. The French Provincial design was a popular Revival style in the 1920s and again in the 1960s.

French Provincial revivals can be found in upscale neighborhoods throughout Northern Virginia.


  • Engleside and Woodlawn in the winter

    Engleside Plaza is a great reasource for Southern Fairfax County residents especially around Woodlawn and Engleside. This is is close proximity to the park at George Washington’s Grist Mill.

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  • George Washington’s Grist Mill

    George Washington’s Gristmill and Distillery
    A gristmill is a mill for the grinding of grain, specifically a customer’s own grain. Grist mills were a common site in colonial America, but there are few such mills still in operation today. Pierce Mill a Rock Creek Park in DC is open to the public but is non-operational. The mill needs repairs. But…

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Georgian style residences


Befitting a king–in fact, the style is named for four King Georges of England–Georgian homes are refined and symmetrical with paired chimneys and a decorative crown over the front door. Modeled after the more elaborate homes of England, the Georgian style dominated the British colonies in the 1700s. Most surviving Georgians sport side-gabled roofs, are two to three stories high, and are constructed in brick.

Georgian homes almost always feature an orderly row of five windows across the second story. Modern-day builders often combine features of the refined Georgian style with decorative flourishes from the more formal Federal style.

For more information or to set up an appointment call Nesbitt Realty at (703)765-0300.
Georgian style residence

Air Force Memorial

Air Force Memorial
Air Force Memorial
Air Force Memorial
Air Force Memorial as seen from the Representative

The Air Force Memorial is sited on a promontory overlooking Washington D.C., Arlington VA and, between them, the Potomac River. The Memorial’s spires measure 270 feet. These spires tower above the Pentagon, Rosslyn and Crystal City. The Memorial was formally dedicated on October 14, 2006. The Memorial remains dedicated to the United States Air Force service members and the Heritage Organizations of the USAF.

The design of the Memorial intends to evoke a modern image of flight by jet and space vehicles, but yet remembers the pioneers of flight who came before. The three spires of the Monument represent the three core values of the US Air Force: Integrity first, Service before self, and Excellence in all we do. It is interesting to note that the spires are different heights and asymmetrical giving the Memorial a dynamic quality that offers different views from every angle. Although the Air Force Memorial is visible all over town, one of the best views is from Arlington Ridge. At the end of Arlington Ridge Road, the Representative overlooks much of the samevistas as the Memorial.



For more information or to set up an appointment call Stuart at (703)765-0300.



Newer homes in Mount Vernon

Petitts Landing is a community of large newer homes in Mount Vernon.  These homes were built in the 1990’s and generally boast more than 4000 sqft of living space plus an ample basement.  Two-car garages and large lots are the norm in this community.  Buyers here should expect hardwood floors, multiple fireplaces and modern amenities not found in some of Mount Vernon’s older homes. Those considering a purchase at Petitts Landing may also want to take a look to see what’s available near Grist Mill.

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