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Hotel Monaco Offering "Your Summer Playground"

Kimpton’s Hotel Monaco in Old Town Alexandria, VA is offering a special summer package now until September 10. For only $10 more you received deluxe accommodations, $25 credit per night to spend in the hotel restaurants, morning iced coffee, a few in-room movie with popcorn, afternoon Arnold Palmers and sangria at the evening wine hour. The Summer Playground package is a perfect way to relax, wine, and dine in Old Town before the summer is over.

100 Needy Students Receive School Supplies Shopping Spree

Early this morning 100 local students in need were given the opportunity to visit a local Target store to buy back-to-school supplies. The Salvation Army and Target teamed up to help these students purchase a variety of supplies for the upcoming school year.

The Salvation Army and Target are helping a total of 12,000 students nationwide with the Target School Spree. Each student that is selected by the Salvation Army gets an $80 Target Giftcard for school supplies.

There were 30 students from DC and Prince Georges County, 30 from Alexandria and Arlington County, 30 from Fairfax and Prince William County, and 10 from Montgomery County.

Alexandria Health Department Issues Mosquito-borne Diseases Warning

The West Nile virus is active in the area and continues to be a threat, especially after last week’s storms. Alexandria Health Department has issued a warning about the risk of mosquito-borne diseases. The warning comes at a time when there is an increased amount of standing water around neighborhoods, damaged homes in the area allow mosquitoes indoors, and more local residents are spending time outside cleaning up debris and doing storm repairs.

While many people who get bitten by a mosquito with West Nile do not get sick, there is still a risk of getting meningitis or encephalitis. The Alexandria Health Department also wanted to remind residents that if you are over the age of 50, you may have an increased risk of complications from the West Nike virus and Eastern equine encephalitis (EEE).

A birth of a bumper crop of mosquitoes is expected very soon after last week’s storm and the health department has several recommendations to avoid any mosquito-borne diseases.

Sugar Cube Presents a Week of Sweets for Kids in Alexandria

Sugar Cube, a family-owned shop that specializes in candy, chocolate, and truffles, is offering some fun events this week for kids. The Sugar Cube, which is located on 210 North Lee Street in Alexandria, is hosting a movie screening on Tuesday, August 3rd from 9 a.m. to 11 a.m. They will be showing “Willy Wonka & The Chocolate Factory” and kids will get a chance to decorate their own Wonka top hats and take home goody bags with treats. The cost is $10 per child.

But that’s not all! The Sugar Cube is also offering a Candy Camp for kids this Thursday, August 5th from 9 a.m. to 11 a.m. Kids will get to dip pretzel rods in chocolate, decorate them with sprinkles and other fun toppings. While I'm sure not all of the chocolate pretzel rods will be packaged away, kids will get personalized bags for the pretzels they make. The cost is $20 per child plus a $15 materials fee.

'Festival of the Arts' Will Bring Art to the Streets of Alexandria

Howard Alan Events is presenting the 8th Annual Festival of the Arts on September 11-12, 2010 in Alexandria, VA. This outdoor art gallery will feature over 200 artists and as much as $15 million of artwork will be for sale. This two-day festival will transform the historic King Street into a first-class outdoor art gallery with over six blocks of artwork.

The Festival of the Arts will have booths lining King Street between South Washington Street and Union Street from 10 a.m. to 7 p.m. on Saturday and 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. on Sunday. It is recommended to take the (free) King Street Trolley from the King Street Metro to the Waterfront. The festival itself is free and open to the public. Don’t miss out on this world-class outdoor art festival!

Coming Soon: Alexandria Restaurant Week 2010

It’s time to start getting your taste buds ready for Alexandria’s 2010 Restaurant Week. This year’s restaurant week will feature 60 different, top neighborhood restaurants and will run from August 20th-August 29th. The 60 selected restaurants range from casually comfortable to formal dining and include a wide variety of cuisines and culinary diversity.

Alexandria’s restaurant has three different categories: a $35 Prix-Fixe Three Course dinner, a $35 Dinner for Two, and $3.50 Sweet Treats. Go ahead and make your reservations now! For a full list of participating restaurants and menus you can visit http://visitalexandriava.com/restaurants-nightlife/restaurants/alexandria-restaurant-week/.

Alexandria Library Holiday Closures

All Alexandria Libraries will be closed for Labor Day weekend: Saturday, September 4th, Sunday, September 5th, and Monday, September 6th. While Alexandria Library was founded in 1794, it is certainly doing a great job of staying up with the times. Now with electronic media available 24/7, Alexandria Library is ALWAYS open!

You can check out eAudiobooks and eBooks through Alexandria Library’s website with OverDrive downloadables. The collections are growing and now the Labor Day weekend holiday closures don’t inhibit your ability to pick up a new read for the weekend if you forget to do so the week before. Visit http://www.alexandria.lib.va.us/ for more information.

That’s not the only new feature of Alexandria Library. They are also now accepting credit cards so you can easily and safely pay library fines.