Alexandria’s Biggest Halloween Celebration

Batman, Robbie and Friends won the award for Most Humorous in the stroller competition. The group is a three-time parade award winner; several members of the group visit from out of state to participate in the parade, “and are real full-time crime fighters and educators as well,” said Sandra Radice-Haley. (Photo: Will Niccolls)

ALEXANDRIA,VA- With a Halloween parade drawing over 7,500 ghouls and goblins — plus a flurry of long-standing community traditions surrounding the parade — Halloween is Del Ray’s biggest holiday. Here are five ways to celebrate:

1. Get In The Spirit: For over 30 years, local residents and businesses have gone all out decorating for Halloween, competing for bragging rights for the best decorated house and business. Join the fun! To nominate a home or business, email the street addresses to delrayhalloweenparade@yahoo.com by noon on October 20—and you can nominate your own haunted house!

Get in the Halloween spirit by visiting the top ten nominees for best decorated house. The map will available the week before the parade at www.visitdelray.com. Dog lovers: be sure to follow @dogsdelray on Facebook for details on community dog walks to check out the decked out houses.

2. Give Back: Help ensure that each child in our community has a happy Halloween. The Del Ray Business Association will host a free costume distribution for children in need on Saturday, October 26 from 2:00 p.m. to 4:00 p.m. at the Mount Vernon Recreation Center. New or gently used costumes can be dropped off at the Pat Miller Neighborhood Square (at the intersection of Mount Vernon & E. Oxford Avenues) or on the porch at 110 E. Del Ray by Friday, October 25.

3. Halloween Parade: The main event—the 23rd Annual Del Ray Halloween Parade—will take place on Sunday, October 27 at 2:00 p.m. along Mount Vernon Avenue, starting at Bellefonte Avenue. The event is free and open to all. The elaborate entries in the annual stroller contest rival the creativity and design of parade floats, and are often a family-wide, block-wide, or even business-wide effort.

In a neighborhood where pets are family, it wouldn’t be Halloween in Del Ray without a canine costume contest. The parade ends at Alexandria’s largest Halloween party, located at the Mount Vernon Recreation Center fields, featuring goodie bags for all children, live music, refreshments, children’s games, and more.

The T.C. Williams Zombie Band leads the Del Ray Halloween Parade. (Photo: Will Niccolls)

4. Step Into The Twilight Zone: The Del Ray Artisans’ October exhibit features art inspired by The Twilight Zone, bringing the timeless television show to life through art and photography. The exhibit runs October 4 through 27, 2019 at Del Ray Artisans gallery, located at 2704 Mount Vernon Avenue, and is free and open to all.

5. Halloween Fun All Month Long: From a Halloween-themed “glow and flow” yoga class (October 25 at 7:00 p.m. at Ease Yoga & Cafe) to a Harvest Festival featuring pumpkin and pint glass painting (October 19 at Hops N Shine), there are so many fun ways to celebrate fall. Visit www.visitdelray.com for a full round-up.

For the adults in the crowd, don’t miss Evening Star Cafe’s annual bash starting at 8:00 p.m. on Halloween night, featuring costume contests, a DJ, and drink specials!

Get complete details on Halloween in Del Ray, including how to enter the best decorated house or stroller and pet costume contests, at www.visitdelray.com/halloween.