• October 20, 2017 6:30 AM | Pat Miller (Administrator)
        Three Del Ray Business Association members, along with one of DRBA's nonprofit partners, were recognized during the Alexandria Chamber of Commerce's annual "Best in Business" awards.  Congratulations to:

    2017 Business Leader of the Year 
    Bill Blackburn
    President Emeritus of the Del Ray Business Association and 
    Managing Partner of Homegrown Restaurant Group (which includes Pork Barrel BBQ, Holy Cow, and the sushi bar)

    Rising Star Business of the Year
    Four Directions Wellness

    Small Business of the Year
    GEICO Insurance Agent - Alexandria, VA

    Association/Nonprofit Business of the Year
    Rebuilding Together Alexandria

         In his acceptance speech, Blackburn explained how small businesses transformed Del Ray into "one of the most desirable places in the country to live and do business." From the speech:

    "Mike [Anderson] and I get a lot of credit for helping make Del Ray great, but the truth is that we stand on the shoulders of giants of our community.  Friends and neighbors like Gayle Reuter, Pat Miller, Jen Walker, and Carol Bailey are the true heroes, and the entire Del Ray Mafia is an incredible powerhouse of neighborhood vitality and economic drive.

    I feel part of why I was selected for this honor is because of my ties to Mount Vernon Avenue. I'd like to talk a little more about what makes Del Ray special, because there are lessons for every neighborhood and for the entire Alexandria community.

    Twenty years ago, Del Ray wasn't the place to be.  There were lots of empty storefronts, poor maintenance, high crime, and in general, it wasn't a place you would want to take your family for cheeseburgers on a Friday night.

    So how did we get to where we are today as one of the most desirable places in the country to live or do business?

    No one swooped in an saved it.  There was no BID.  The local government didn't do this.  Our representatives in Richmond didn't spur this change.

    Who turned things around?  We did.  And when I say we, I mean the small businesses.  Nora Partlow at St. Elmo's and the folks at The Evening Star took a chance and started doing business here when no one else would.  They started taking care of their block, creating energy, and bringing good people with them.  

    Other businesses followed, and brought with them more positive energy and ideas.  Neighbors responded by taking pride in the neighborhood, supporting shops and restaurants, and volunteering for events and projects.  The pride that came from these businesses was contagious and the residents soon followed.

    In fact, a year ago, some folks from the Arlington planning department came to Del Ray to meet with the Del Ray Business Association and figure out the "secret" so they could create a Del Ray-type neighborhood in Arlington.  After everyone talked for awhile about Del Ray, here's what I told them: This isn't something any type of government can create.   Government is an important partner, but the magic in Del Ray is not a formula and there's no secret except a lot of wonderful people working hard to ensure their own success.

    It's the people of each neighborhood that makes them special, and small business is the hub. Coming together through business associations, the Chamber, and in coffee shops and kitchen tables, it's all the people in THIS room that create the magic. The energy and creativity that is needed to make a neighborhood or community desirable comes from small business.  It has to be natural and real, and it won't work if it's contrived or forced.  Consumers are smart, and they want something real.  And this can only be created organically.

    To put it simply, business must be led by business.  I am here today on behalf of every small business leader who wakes up early, works into the night, earns the loyalty of customers and staff, and provides the best products and services possible.  I'm here because I didn't whine and I didn't wait.  Like so many of my colleagues, I rolled up my sleeves and went to work.  When I see an opportunity to grow my business or contribute to my community, I take it.  And it's because so many here tonight have done the same that Alexandria is such an incredible place."

  • October 04, 2017 11:52 PM | Pat Miller (Administrator)

    The 22nd annual Art on the Avenue festival will take place Saturday, Oct. 7 from 10 a.m. to 6 p.m. in the Del Ray neighborhood of Alexandria. The event, which takes place on Mount Vernon Avenue between Hume and Bellefonte Avenues, is free and open to all, featuring: 

    -- Over 350 artists: Fine artists, artisans and craftspeople sell their handmade items, such as wheel thrown vases and bowls, tiles, sculpture, tote bags and purses, drawings and pastels, knitted and crocheted hats and gloves, woven scarves and shawls, gourmet food, fused and blown glass, jewelry, turned wood bowls, paintings, photography, wooden puzzles, and much, much more. 

    -- Five stages of live music: From Blues to Bluegrass, Irish to Americana, Country to Rock and Roll, there's something for everyone on the festival's five entertainment stages. 

    -- Children’s activities: Build a scarecrow; make & launch a rocket; paint a pumpkin (and a DASH bus!); create stained glass art, light-up sculptures, tote bags, spin art, and more. All children's activities are free, and led by local non-profits. 

    -- Artist demonstrations: Contribute to a collaborative art piece; watch a 3-D printer in action; learn about the life cycle of bees; compare different methods and mediums of painting; transform recycled materials into art; and more. 

    -- International Food: There is no better way to experience Del Ray’s diversity than through food! Enjoy specialty items from neighborhood restaurants, plus food from a wide variety of street vendors. 

    -- Pie Baking Contest: All are welcome to compete in an old-fashioned pie baking contest with prizes awarded in three divisions – youth, amateur, and professional bakers. After the competition, slices of pie available for sale to benefit the Bellefonte Wizards, the neighborhood Special Olympics basketball team. Complete details and rules available at

         Free trolley transportation will be provided from the Braddock Road Metro Station to the festival. 

    STREET CLOSURES: Please note: Mt Vernon Avenue (plus one block to the east and west) will be closed to traffic from Bellefonte to Commonwealth Ave. from 7am to approx. 8pm. Residents on those blocks can come and go, but no one will be able to cross the Avenue. 

    BUS SERVICE (10A, 10B, AT10) will be rerouted along Monroe and Commonwealth to bypass festival blocks. 

    PLEASE NOTE: there will be NO Del Ray Farmers' Market this week, and no compost collection. 

        For more information, plus a complete schedule, visit

  • September 28, 2017 5:30 PM | Pat Miller (Administrator)

        In recognition of her tireless work to improve the Del Ray neighborhood of Alexandria, the Alexandria City Council will officially dedicate the Del Ray Farmers' Market site "The Pat Miller Neighborhood Square" on Sat., Oct 7 at 2pm.  The dedication will take place during the 22nd Annual Art on the Avenue, one of many community events and initiatives organized by Del Ray Business Association Treasurer Pat Miller.

         "Del Ray is Del Ray because of the force of nature that is Pat Miller," said Alexandria Vice Mayor Justin Wilson, a Del Ray resident. "It is altogether fitting to name a space that brings our neighborhood together after a person who has brought our neighborhood together for so long.”

        Miller, who has lived in Del Ray for over 30 years, is a past president of the Del Ray Business Association; has served on the board for over 20 years; and co-chairs the Special Events Committee, which plans First Thursday, Taste of Del Ray, Halloween Parade, Turkey Trot & Holiday Tree Lighting.  Miller also serves as Market Manager of the Del Ray Farmers Market; Chair of Art on the Avenue; serves on the Alexandria Police Foundation Board; served on the Kelly Cares Foundation board, which was responsible for several major projects for special needs children, including the Miracle Field; is a board member of the Community Partners for Children; and is a former Chair of the Alexandria Commission for the Arts; among numerous other volunteer roles.  She was named an Alexandria "Living Legend" in 2012.

         "If there's a need or a call for volunteers, then Pat is part of it," said Del Ray Business Association board member Gayle Reuter, who co-chairs the DRBA Special Events Committee with Miller.  "Every time we talk I find out something new that she has volunteered for."

          The naming of the public space, approved by the Alexandria City Council, was endorsed by both the Del Ray Citizens' Association and the Del Ray Business Association.

  • September 09, 2017 9:27 AM | Pat Miller (Administrator)

        During National Wellness Week (Sept. 10-16), local wellness businesses in the Del Ray neighborhood of Alexandria will feature free classes, educational ta"lks, and discounts throughout the week. The Well Ray businesses of the Del Ray Business Association are dedicated to providing the community with services that contribute to a strong foundation of wellness. Please join us for the following:


    Sunday, Sept. 10

    • 10am: Free Yoga Class at lululemon Alexandria (700 King Street) with Xtend Barre Old Town

    Monday, Sept. 11 

    • 12pm-1pm: Free Mindfulness Hour by Four Directions Wellness (2001 Mount Vernon Avenue)
    • 4pm-5:30pm: Open house at Counseling of Alexandria (2104 Mount Vernon Avenue), featuring a Q&A about parenting and child emotional & behavioral development. 
    • 6:30pm-7:30pm and 7:30pm-8:30pm): Outdoor spin classes with Ascend Cycle on the 2400 block of Mount Vernon Avenue, featuring free giveaways. Sign up at
    Tuesday, Sept. 12
    • 12pm-1pm: Caring Acupuncture (2111 Eisenhower Ave, Ste 402) will host a wellness talk "Energy and Wellness Talk" by Lindsey Godwasser of Wholesome Health.
    • 6:30pm-7:30pm: Free Flow Yoga class at the Bean Creative Field (2200 block of Mount Vernon Avenue) hosted by Wholesome Health with Lindsey, followed by a health coach Q&A.

    Wednesday, Sept. 13

    • 5pm-6pm: Educational talk at Dental Excellence (3116 Mount Vernon Avenue). Please RSVP to Mari at

    • 6:30pm-7:30pm Free Cool Yoga class by Maureen Clyne at the Just ASK Publications & Professional Development Parking lot (1900 Mount Vernon Ave).  The class ends with an essential oil and guided meditation for relaxation by Del Ray Psychological & Wellness Associates. Yoga powered by @Home Real Estate Lounge & Design and sponsored by Just ASK Publications & Professional Development.  After class refreshments served by Bon Vivant Cafe + Farm Market and ketone samples provided by Dr. Lola Capps of Chrysalis Chiropractic of Alexandria.

    • 7:30pm-8pm: Licensed physical therapists from ProFlex Physical Therapy will be at the Just ASK Publications & Professional Development Parking lot (1900 Mount Vernon Ave) to offer free screenings to attendees who wish to have an injury or condition examined to help them determine whether or not physical therapy would be beneficial. For more information, visit
    Thursday, Sept. 14
    • 6:30pm-7:30pm: Free Hawt Pilates Boot Camp by Mind the Mat Pilates & Yoga at Bean Creative field (2200 block of Mount Vernon Avenue). 

    Friday, Sept. 15

    • 4pm-6pm: Wings & Wellness at Pork Barrel BBQ (2312 Mount Vernon Avenue). Please join the Well Ray community for "Wings & Wellness"! Get to know your local wellness providers and the wide variety of services they have to offer and enjoy some wings!

    Ongoing Events

    • Alexandria Children's Dentistry of Del Ray: Schedule a "happy visit" tour of the office (609 E. Monroe Ave) to better get to know them. Contact Amber at


    Visit Bellies & Babies Consignment Boutique (1913 Mount Vernon Avenue) anytime during Wellness Week to enter a raffle for a 50-minute Reflexology session with Virginia Patton, certified Reflexologist from the renowned International Institute of Reflexology.

    Visit Acupuncture in Del Ray (3140 Commonwealth Ave.) to enter a drawing for a free food therapy consultation.

    • Acupuncture in Del Ray (3140 Commonwealth Avenue) will offer food therapy consultations in-office for $85 (regular price $95; limit one per person). This will come with recipes and suggestions for fall foods. Special price valid when appointment is booked by October 3, 2017. For more information, visit

    • Core Wellness (2212 Mount Vernon Avenue) will offer an introductory 30-minute Infrared Sauna Session for $20 (regularly $30) from Sept 11-15. Discounted Packages will also be available for purchase during this time:10 Pack/$250 or 30 Pack/$500. For more information, visit

    • Ease Yoga & Cafe (3051 Mount Vernon Avenue) has a special discount for new clients: 30 days unlimited yoga for $30!  Fore more information, visit
    • FIT4MOM Arlington- Alexandria is offering a free week of classes for all new participants and 10% all monthly packages. For more information and a class schedule, visit

    • Foundation Fitness (2305 Mount Vernon Avenue) is offering $35 per session for the first month with the purchase of a minimum four month contract, plus a complimentary assessment and free introductory session. Contact CJ Wesby at
    • Healing Tree (2101 Mount Vernon Avenue): is offering a $10 discount off massages of 60 minutes or longer with Maryellen Thorpe and 1/2 off an initial chiropractic appointment Monday through Friday with Dr. Cindy Durakis. For more information, visit
    • Mind the Mat Pilates & Yoga (2214 Mount Vernon Avenue) is offering  $99/month Deluxe Membership PLUS 15% OFF workshops, class packages & expert series. For more information, visit

    • Mount Vernon Family Therapy Associates LLC (1707 Belle View Blvd) is offering free Heart Math Sessions. Contact Cara Shirley at for more information.

    • Solutions Physical Therapy (225 Reinekers Ln) is offering mobility packages with a free mobility evaluation. For more information,l visit

    • Tippi Toes DC is offering 50% off annual enrollment fee. For more information and class schedules, contact Claire Portolese at

    • Xtend Barre Old Town (1701 Duke St, Suite 160): Special Offers for New Clients: First Class Free & 1-Month of Unlimited Classes for $99.
    • YMCA Alexandria (420 E. Monroe Ave.) offers trial memberships, personal training consultations, group exercise classes, and more. Contact Aaron Riley for membership information, or visit branch.cfm?bid=02

       Wellness Week in Del Ray is sponsored by the Wellness Group of the Del Ray Business Association, which represents the independently-owned health and wellness businesses in the Del Ray neighborhood of Alexandria.  For more information, visit

  • September 06, 2017 4:57 PM | Pat Miller (Administrator)

        FIRST THURSDAY, Del Ray's monthly summer street festival, takes place September 7 from 6pm to dusk along Mount Vernon Avenue with the theme "Art, Music, and Dance on the Avenue." The event is free and open to all.  Join the Del Ray Business Association on Mount Vernon Avenue as we celebrate the arts:

    The Pat Miller Neighborhood Square (Mount Vernon and Oxford Avenues)
    6pm: Tippi Toes Dance
    6:30pm: Alexandria Symphony Orchestra Sympatico's Singing Eagles
    7pm: Alexandria Singers
    -- Community Kids Club bake sale for the Houston Food Bank
    -- Meet our featured non-profit, The Fund for Alexandria's Child, and learn about opportunities to help children in need during the holidays

    Del Ray Artisans (2704 Mount Vernon Avenue)
    "Childhood Passions" art exhibit; gallery open until 9pm

    Cheesetique (2411 Mount Vernon Avenue)
    13th Anniversary Celebration featuring live jazz and cheese board painting 

    United Bank (2401 Mount Vernon Avenue)
    Library card sign-ups and music, art, and dance-themed stories with Duncan Library

    St. Elmo's Coffee Pub (2300 Mount Vernon Avenue)
    Pressed flower art demonstration with artist Joyce Wagner 

    Bean Creative Field (2200 block of Mount Vernon Avenue)
    -- Instruments and fun with Music Together Alexandria
    -- Kindness rocks! painting with Friends of Guest House

    Breezeway Between Greener Cleaner & Neighborhood Pharmacy (2200 Block of Mount Vernon Avenue)
    Chalk art with Patrick Kirwin

    Counseling of Alexandria (2104 Mount Vernon Avenue)
    Giant community coloring page

    Del Ray Picture Framing (2009 Mount Vernon Avenue)
    Artist demonstration by Don Ripper

    Bellies & Babies Consignment Boutique (1913 Mount Vernon Avenue)
    7th Anniversary Celebration featuring live music by Mars Rodeo and children's activities

    Where's the Sheriff?  (Somewhere On The Avenue....)
    Find the sheriff at a mystery location for a prize!

    ... and more!

        The Community Kids Club will host a bake sale at the Pat Miller Neighborhood Square to help those affected by Hurricane Harvey, with all proceeds to benefit the Houston Food Bank.  Those wanting to contribute baked goods can drop them off at the Pat Miller Neighborhood Square after 5:30pm.

        Held the first Thursday of the month from April to September along Mount Vernon Avenue in the Del Ray neighborhood of Alexandria, First Thursday is a series of free outdoor street festivals that bring the community together around a fun theme, benefiting a local nonprofit.   This month’s event is sponsored by the Del Ray Business Association and Rosemont Landscaping and Lawncare.

  • August 22, 2017 9:16 AM | Pat Miller (Administrator)

    Image result for junction bakery and bistroCongratulations to Junction Bakery & Bistro, named one of the region's top ten new restaurants by Washingtonian magazine!

    Washingtonian writes, "Neighborhood restaurants are notoriously hard to pull off.  How to balance moderate prices and a relaxed vibe with just enough cheffy ambition?  Nathan Hatfield -- a former bread baker for Restaurant Eve -- nails the genre.  What you'll find inside his sunny, family-friendly dining room: perfect sticky buns and everything-spiced croissants in the morning, excellent baked goods and sandwiches on fresh loaves throughout the day, and a simple, wine-friendly dinner menu. ... It's a neighborhood restaurant worth driving out of your way for."

    Junction Bakery & Bistro is located at 1508 Mt Vernon Ave.  For more information, visit
  • August 18, 2017 6:10 AM | Pat Miller (Administrator)

    From August 18-27, 2017, over 60 Alexandria restaurants will feature a $35 three-course dinner for one OR a $35 dinner for two during Alexandria Summer Restaurant Week. More than two dozen restaurants will also offer lunch deals at $10, $15 or $20 per person in addition to the dinner specials.

    Alexandria Summer Restaurant Week showcases the inventiveness of local chefs in neighborhoods throughout the city, including Old Town, Del Ray, Carlyle and the West End. At a range of locales, from fine dining establishments to casual neighborhood favorites, guests will savor the flavors of Alexandria's distinctive collection of eateries. 

    Participating restaurants in Del Ray:

    • Bombay Curry Company, 2607 Mount Vernon Ave.  Click here for menu
    • Cheesetique, 2411 Mount Vernon Ave.  Click here for menu
    • Del Ray Cafe, 205 E. Howell Ave.  Click here for menu
    • Evening Star Cafe, 2000 Mount Vernon Ave.  Click here for menu
    • Junction Bakery and Bistro, 1508 Mount Vernon Ave.  Click here for menu

    • Lena's Wood-Fired Pizza and Tap,  401 E. Braddock Road.  Click here for menu
    • Live Oak Restaurant, 1603 Commonwealth Ave.  Click here for menu
    • Northside 10, 10 E. Glebe Road.  Click here for menu
  • August 10, 2017 8:13 AM | Pat Miller (Administrator)

         During the 8th Annual Summer Sidewalk Sale, the streets of Alexandria will be buzzing with shoppers grabbing hot summer deals! The two-day event will take place throughout Del Ray and Old Town August 12-13.

         Participating Del Ray boutiques include Bellies and Babies (1913 Mount Vernon Ave.), Greenstreet Gardens of Del Ray (1503 Mount Vernon Ave.), Kiskadee,(2205 Mount Vernon Ave.), Purple Goose (2005 Mount Vernon Ave.), and Top it Off (1906 Mount Vernon Ave.)

         Share your fab finds using #VisitDelRay on your social media channels!

  • August 09, 2017 12:00 PM | Pat Miller (Administrator)

        The Alexandria Chamber of Commerce named Del Ray Business Association President Emeritus Bill Blackburn the 2017 Business Leader of the Year.  From the release:

    "The Chamber is excited to announce that Bill Blackburn, a Partner at Home Grown Restaurant Group, has been selected as the 2017 Business Leader of the Year.  He will be honored at the annual Business Leadership Awards Presentation and Reception, presented by Burke & Herbert Bank, on October 18th at the George Washington Masonic National Memorial.  

    Originally from St. Louis, Missouri, Bill Blackburn graduated from The George Washington University with a degree in Business Administration in 2000.

    Upon moving to Alexandria, Bill soon began a life in the restaurant industry, starting from the bottom and culminating in his current role as managing partner in the Home Grown Restaurant Group (Pork Barrel BBQ, Holy Cow, the sushi bar, Sweet Fire Donnas and Whiskey & Oyster). Bill recently finished his second term as the president of the Del Ray Business Association (DRBA) and is a current board member of the Alexandria Small Business Development Center (SBDC). Along with Donna and "Mango" Mike Anderson, the restaurant group has invested dollars, energy and resources into the Del Ray and Carlyle Neighborhoods and employs over 100 people in the City of Alexandria. Their group has been instrumental in helping to make Del Ray a thriving neighborhood in which to live and work and has set the bar for unique and creative opportunities to become involved in the local community.

    Bill helped established the Holy Cow Burger Fund, through which a quarter for every sandwich sold is donated to a local Alexandria nonprofit through ACT for Alexandria. To date, the fund has donated nearly 400,000 quarters ($100,000) to over 150 local charities.  Bill serves on the Advocates for Alexandria Aquatics board of directors and helps to lobby for the local aquatics community.   As a member of the DRBA, Bill has been instrumental in providing knowledge, leadership, time and money for numerous efforts including: the annual Turkey Trot; the Del Ray Halloween Parade; providing a 30-foot Christmas tree for Del Ray; leading efforts for First Thursday events; and Art on the Avenue which draws over 20,000 people to the City of Alexandria. 

    Having lived in Alexandria for 15 years, Bill currently resides in the Del Ray neighborhood his wife Megan, their two-year-old son and, of course, two dogs.

    Please make plans to join us to celebrate Bill and our other award winners on October 18th at the Business Leadership Awards Presentation and Reception, presented by Burke & Herbert Bank." 

         Congrats, Bill -- and thank you for all that you do for the Del Ray community!

  • August 01, 2017 7:55 AM | Pat Miller (Administrator)

        FIRST THURSDAY, Del Ray's monthly summer street festival, takes place August 3 from 6pm to dusk along Mount Vernon Avenue with the theme "Staycation!" The event is free and open to all.  Join the Del Ray Business Association on Mount Vernon Avenue for fun summer activities, including:

    • Live music at the Pat Miller Neighborhood Square 
    • Beach Yoga with Mind the Mat Pilates and Yoga at 6:45pm at the Bean Creative field. Bring a beach towel! Families welcome.
    • Skateboarding with The Board Bus  
    • Upcycled cheese boards with Cheesetique
    • 2nd Annual Watermelon Seed Spittin' Contest at Pork Barrel BBQ
    • Photo booth and snow cones at Bellies and Babies 
    • Where's the Sheriff? (Kids: find the sheriff at a mystery location for a fun prize!)
    • Stories around the world with Duncan Library on the breezeway between Neighborhood Pharmacy and Greener Cleaner
    • At-Home Spa with Wise Light Wellness and Essentially Focused in front of Bon Vivant Cafe 
    • Greenstreet Gardens kicks off their weekend-long celebration of shop cat Della’s one-year anniversary
    • and more!
        The event is free and open to all. Participants are encouraged to bring single serving-sized, non-perishable food for Blessings in a Backpack, which provides food for the weekends for elementary school children across America who might otherwise go hungry. Suggested donations include boxes of granola bars, fruit snacks, juice boxes, individual cups of nut butter, boxes of instant oatmeal in single-serving packets, individual-size boxes of cereal, breakfast-in-a-cup selections, noodle cups, packets of heat-and-eat rice, and shelf-stable entree options.

        Held the first Thursday of the month from April to September along Mount Vernon Avenue in the Del Ray neighborhood of Alexandria, First Thursday is a series of free outdoor street festivals that bring the community together around a fun theme, benefiting a local nonprofit.   This month’s event is sponsored by the Del Ray Business Association and The Jen Walker Team.

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