Here are playful and tasty ways to celebrate Pi Day in Northern Virginia, along with great websites with pi facts and fun for all. Our Pi Day guide includes a sampling of favorite bakeries in Northern Virginia where you can buy a delicious, fresh pie for your celebration.
Pi Day 2015 was extra special because the date and time—3-14-15 9:26:53—aligned to match the first 10 digits of Pi (Greek letter “π”). Though 2020 is not so spectacular, every year offers an opportunity for celebration and fun with math.
Find more fun things to do in our guide: March Events in Northern Virginia: Festivals and Fun Near DC.
Celebrate with Local Pie from Tasty Northern Virginia Bakeries
There are plenty of local bakeries and restaurants where you can buy tasty pie of the sweet, savory, or pizza variety. Here are a few of the options we’ve checked out, some with special Pi Day pricing.
Mom’s Apple Pie, Leesburg, Round Hill, and Occoquan
This family-owned and operated gem packs loads of deliciousness into a tiny storefront, one of our favorite places to eat in Leesburg VA. Mom’s Apple Pie is known for natural, preservative-free, made from scratch pies, and they offer the widest variety of sliced and whole pies we’ve found.
At the Leesburg location, you’ll also find a case loaded with homemade cakes, cookies, giant brownies, loaves of bread, and other goodies. Along with our Chocolate Pecan Pie (amazingly good!), we picked up Irish Soda Bread and a bowl of Curried Apple and Sweet Potato soup that is sooo good. This is a destination that’s worth a drive. Be sure to look up to admire the pie plate-lined ceiling.
Little Apple Pastry Shop, Aldie
The Little Apple Pastry Shop bakes fresh apple pies daily, available whole or by the slice.
You can also stop by to make a special order from a list of nearly 50 other pie varieties including fruit, sugar-free, special, and cream pies. The shop also offers country ham biscuits, sandwiches (including a popular fresh turkey sandwich), and other treats.
Upper Crust, Middleburg
We stopped by Upper Crust in Middleburg for a quick lunch, but the bakery items are the bigger draw. The bakery case is packed with tasty-looking cookies, whoopee pies, and unusual treats like the cow puddle. They carry an impressive selection of whole pies, including the oddly named Jingleberry Pie and the Johnny Doughboy (apple with maple crust). Just be sure to bring cash because they don’t take credit cards.
Pie Gourmet, Vienna
Another local, pie-centric bakery is Pie Gourmet in Vienna. They have a selection of more than 50 custom dessert pies, 13 dinner pies, 10 cheesecakes, gluten-free pies, and more. Stop by to see what’s available that day or order ahead by phone or online. Prices are a bit higher, but the pies are all handmade from scratch, and they have many avid fans.
Amphora Bakery, Herndon and Vienna
Amphora’s two restaurant locations are popular spots for Sunday morning breakfast or a late-night snack. Two separate bakery locations offer a case-full of cakes, pies, and treats and there’s a long list of pies on their website.
Amphora celebrates Pi Day with special pies marked with the symbol of the day. Stop by your favorite location and see which pies are available, call to order ahead, or visit the restaurant to enjoy a slice.
We also picked up a giant chocolate chip cookie when we last stopped by and it was delicious!
Livin the Pie Life, Arlington
Thanks to our alert reader, Cara, we are adding Livin the Pie Life in Arlington to our pie shop list. While we have not visited ourselves (yet!), we hear great things about this small-batch bakery that sources ingredients locally. They offer an extensive menu of fruit, sweet, and savory pies that you can order online or purchase in the shop. Arlington pie lovers should consider joining the Pie of the Month Club for tasty pie all year long.
Craft Your Own Pi Day Celebration at Home
Plan a Pi Day Party
If you prefer, you can always craft your own homemade Pi Day fun.
- Bake your own Pi Day pie with this cool Pi Pie Pan from Amazon.
- The American Pie Council has some pie-making tips, along with a downloadable packet of pie-related activities.
- Gift your favorite geek a mathematically inspired coffee mug.
- Plan a party with Pi balloons and more fun Pi Day Amazon gear.
Eat Round Foods For A Day
See if you can spend the whole day eating round foods and pie. Extra points for pineapple slices, pita bread, and pickles, since they are round and begin with “pi.” If you want to challenge (torment) your children, have them calculate the circumference of each of the food items you eat. Serve everything on round plates, of course.
Here’s a sample round and tasty Pi Day Menu for committed celebrators.
- Breakfast: Cheerios or pancakes, with banana slices and blueberries
- Lunch: meatballs and provolone on pita bread; sliced carrots, cucumbers, and pickles; and pineapple slices, pie or cookies for dessert
- Snack: Ritz crackers with mini Babybel cheese and pepperoni slices
- Dinner: a savory pie (like Shephard’s pie), quiche, or pizza, with more pie and a nice round scoop of ice cream for dessert
See a Math Inspired Movie
No time for a movie? Dig out your Three Stooges DVD collection and re-watch those pie fight classics In the Sweet Pie and Pie and Half Wits Holiday.
Take a Pi Day Outing
Visit Albert Einstein in Washington DC
Did you know that March 14th is Albert Einstein’s birthday? Make a pilgrimage to Washington DC’s Albert Einstein statue and get a picture sitting with our favorite math genius on his Pi birthday.
Celebrate Pi Day at Sully Historic Site in Chantilly VA
Real pie may not go on forever, but it has a long history as a classic food made at Sully in the 1800s. Visit the 1794 kitchen and see interpreters bake traditional recipes over an open-hearth fire. Sample a piece as you learn about this historically delicious food. The program cost is $3.14 and it runs from 3:14 to 5:00 pm. No registration required.
Run a 5K… And a Bit More
The math-minded students at Thomas Jefferson High host an annual Pi Miler at Burke Lake Park. You can always create your own Pi-inspired run. Since a 5K is 3.1 miles, you’ll want to keep running a bit past the finish line to achieve a perfect Pi distance.
Make a Pi Sculpture
We spied this fabulous pi snow sculpture at Great Falls before the big day in 2015. If there’s no snow on the ground this year, be creative! Maybe you can sculpt your pi with mud; plentiful after pre-spring rains. Worst case, you can go two-dimensional and create a pi-inspired drawing in the dirt.
More Pi Fun
Mind blown in 3 easy steps:
- Write down the first 3 digits of pi on a big piece of paper.
- Hold your sign up in front of a mirror.
- What does it spell?
Coincidence? I think not.
Immerse yourself in pi with a visit to PiDay.org. Be sure to enjoy the persistence and symmetry in the wonderful 3 minute 14 second long video of Pi in dominoes. Stay to the end to see how pi was used to estimate the number of dominoes required. You can also read the resolution passed by Congress in 2009, designating March 14th as National Pi Day; learn pi fun facts, and buy cool pi gear.
Check out this article from the Virginia Governor’s Academy for Engineering Studies, which inspired some of the ideas on our list, for more fun ways to celebrate Pi Day.
Whatever celebration you choose, we wish you a very Happy Pi Day!
This article was published in 2015 and updated in 2019 and 2020.