On Alexandria’s most festive weekend of the year, the Torpedo Factory joins the merriment with its annual Holiday Festival. The Torpedo Factory will be the afternoon destination for visitors after the 46th Annual Scottish Christmas Walk Parade and before the 25th Annual Holiday Boat Parade of Lights on the Potomac, which floats past the Torpedo Factory’s riverfront entrance.
More than 150 artists of the Torpedo Factory Artists’ Association share sweet treats in their studios for shoppers who want to buy gifts of art this year. Handmade jewelry and ornaments, original ceramics, family portraits, couture fashions, and other original works will be available for purchase.
The afternoon will also feature a children’s scavenger hunt, live music with the Alexandria Choral Society and Braddock Brass Quintet, and a visit from Santa. Several giveaways will occur during the festival, including coupons from a number of artists.
Festivities run 2 – 6 pm, but the doors stay open until 9 pm to welcome visitors in from the waterfront.
Schedule of Events
- 2:30 pm: Alexandria Choral Society performance I
- 3 pm: Santa Claus arrives by boat at the start of the Holiday Boat Parade of Lights
- 3:15 pm: Braddock Brass performance I
- 4 pm: Alexandria Choral Society performance II
- 5 pm: Braddock Brass performance II
- 9 pm: Doors close
Shop Local, Buy Handmade
In 2014, Alexandria was estimated to be home to nearly five time the national average for creative business (Americans for the Arts), thanks in large part to the Torpedo Factory Art Center, which is home to the nation’s largest community of publicly accessible artists’ studios under one roof.
All of the artists in the Torpedo Factory Art Center are also independent small-business owners. Not only do they help to shape the distinctive creative personality of Old Town Alexandria, but on average, dollars spent at local businesses return three times more money to the local economy compared to a chain. (Civic Economics)