May Events in Northern Virginia and Festivals Near DC

2022 May events in Northern Virginia celebrate spring, strawberries, art, and more plus special holidays including Mother’s Day, Kids to Parks Day, and Memorial Day. There are some great new May events to check out in 2022 as well as several annual favorites returning.

Our list of May events includes things to do in Fairfax County, Loudoun County, Prince William County, Alexandria, Arlington, and other Northern Virginia towns. Festivals and events are listed in order of start date, with multi-day May events generally listed first.

Some 2022 events require reservations so plan ahead. Follow the links for further details, and always check for cancellations and other updates.

2022 Northern VA May Events and Spring Festivals

Plan a month of spring fun at these great 2022 May events and festivals in Northern Virginia and the DC region. Since May 2022 starts on a Sunday, consider these events on Saturday, April 30th, as well:

Revolutionary War Weekend, Mount Vernon, Apr 30 – May 1

George Washington’s Mount Vernon estate hosts one of the largest Revolutionary War encampments of the year when the 12-acre field is transformed into a battleground.  See Continentals, Redcoats, and cannons in action at this family-friendly event, and meet the soldiers and “General Washington.”

Be sure to check out the indoor exhibits, including the interactive Be Washington exhibit and the 4D theater. Activities are included with regular admission; 9:00 – 5:00 daily.

Artisan Pop-up Market, Fairfax Corner, Apr 30 – May 1

Shop for unique handmade and vintage items (perhaps a Mother's Day gift?) at a weekend marked at Fairfax Corner. This family-friendly weekend also includes live music plus crafts and activities for kids. Free; 11:00 – 5:00.

Theater in the Park, Reston, Apr 29 – May 1

Enjoy a free presentation of Shakespeare's comedy A Midsummer Night's Dream at the new Theater in the Park at Reston Town Center. This family-friendly production is a collaboration between NextStop Theater and Reston Community Center. Free; 7:00 pm.

Farmers Markets, Multiple Locations

Some of the best seasonal Farmers Markets in Northern Virginia open in May, while several Saturday markets open on April 30. Our complete guide lists more than 50 farmer's markets in the DC area with a market for nearly every day of the year.

Happy May Day!, May 1

Start a May Day tradition with a visit to one of the many beautiful gardens in Virginia and Washington DC. May is one of the best times to see Virginia gardens in bloom. Plus, you can often shop for your own native plants at many of the gardens in our area.

Big Truck Days, Public Works Complex, Herndon, May 5 – 6

Herndon's annual Big Truck Days lets children and their parents see the town’s big trucks and heavy equipment on display. The event is free but attendees are encouraged to bring non-perishable food donations for the needy. Thursday 9:00 – 3:00, Friday 9:00 – 7:00.

Cinco de Mayo, Multiple Locations, May 5

Celebrate Cinco de Mayo with a dine-in or takeout order of tasty tacos in Northern Virginia, from your favorite local spot.

Margaritas and tacos on the patio at Taco Bamba Vienna Virginia
Taco Bamba tacos

Friday Night Live!, Herndon, May 6

Several outdoor summer concert series start in May including the popular Friday Night Live concerts in Herndon. See our complete guide to Outdoor Concerts in Northern Virginia featuring more than 40 concert series offering a whole season of free family-friendly music.

Free Outdoor Concerts in Northern Virginia and Summer Music Series

Spring Art Market, Del Ray, May 7

Shop local from Del Ray artisans at the Spring Art Market in Colasanto Park. Media includes ceramics, fiber, jewelry, mixed media, paper, photography, and more. Free admission; 10:00 – 4:00.

Mason Neck Eagle Festival, Lorton, May 7

The 24th annual Mason Neck Eagle Festival returns as an in-person event in 2022. Celebrate and learn about eagles by the Potomac River with a full day of live animal shows and family-friendly activities plus pony rides, food trucks, and more. The event (including park admission) is free. 10:00 – 6:00.

Plan your visit: Mason Neck State Park: Nature and Fun in Northern Virginia

Spring Farm Day, Frying Pan Farm Park, May 7 CANCELED

Enjoy a day of family fun at Frying Pan Farm with hands-on farm activities like cow and goat milking, crafts, games, and puppet shows. You can also meet the baby farm animals up close and watch sheep shearing and antique farm equipment demonstrations. Walk-ins are welcome; admission is $12 at the door, $10 in advance, kids under 2 free. 10:00 – 3:00.

Visit Frying Pan Farm Park for Free Family-Friendly Fun

Virginia Gold Cup, The Plains, May 7

The 97th running of the world-famous Virginia Gold Cup returns to the first weekend in May 2022. Head to Great Meadow in The Plains to watch some of the best steeplechase racing you'll find anywhere. Race day activities include terrier races, shopping, hat contests, tailgate contests, and more. Ticket pricing varies; follow the link for details.

Spring Festival, Gunston Hall, May 7

Visit historic Gunston Hall for a Spring Festival and old-time family fun. Fly a kite in the pastures, write with a quill pen, play 18th-century games, climb on a modern fire truck, and purchase colorful kites. $10/8 adults/under 18, 10:00 – 4:00.

Run the Greenway, Dulles, May 7

Join the 2nd annual Run the Greenway 5K, 10K, and Kids Fun Run. This is a rare chance to run on the Dulles Greenway, beginning at the Toll Plaza. Follow the link for race schedules and to register.

Mural Day at The Parc, Tysons, May 7

Celebrate the unveiling of The Parc at Tyson's new mural with an afternoon of music, food, and family-friendly activities. Free; noon – 5:00.

Mother’s Day, May 8

May 8 2022 is Mother's Day, and we rounded up lots of places to celebrate Mom this year. Our list of local parks, gardens, and other destinations includes an active option and one that is ideal for folks with limited mobility or families with strollers. Plan a unique and special day with Mom:

Beyond Brunch: Mother’s Day Outings in Northern Virginia

Spring Wine Festival and Sunset Tour, Mount Vernon, May 13 – 15

Get your tickets early for this sell-out event. Celebrate the history of wine in Virginia with exclusive evening tours of the Mansion and cellar, appearances by “George and Martha Washington”, and live jazz on the east lawn overlooking the Potomac. Ticket prices start at $49; 6:00 – 9:00.

Fun Things to do at George Washington’s Estate in Mount Vernon Virginia

2nd Saturday Art Walk, Workhouse Arts, Lorton, May 14

On the second Saturday of each month, the Workhouse Arts Center hosts a fun evening featuring art and music. View artists creating art in the studios or exhibiting in 12 campus galleries. Enjoy live performances of dance, cabaret, comedy, big band, jazz, and theater. Indulge in classes in the art of mixology or cuisines from around the globe. Free; 6:00 – 9:00 pm.

Observe the Lunar Eclipse, Chantilly, May 15

Head to our favorite Smithsonian museum, the Air and Space Udvar-Hazy Center in Chantilly, to learn about and view a total lunar eclipse. Attendees will be able to view the eclipse and stargaze through the telescopes of the Northern Virginia Astronomy. Museum parking is free after 4:00 and the event is free and open to all ages. 8:30 pm – 1:00 am.

Northern Virginia Fine Arts Festival, Reston, May 20 – 22

One of the most popular festivals in Northern Virginia, the Tephra ICA Festival (formerly the Northern Virginia Fine Arts Festival) lines the streets of Reston Town Center with art-filled booths. Each booth is staffed by artists who are happy to answer questions and discuss their work. This weekend of quirky, unique, and beautiful art also features kids activities, food trucks, and live entertainment.

Locals Guide: 10 Best Things to Do in Reston Virginia

The Jurrasic Encounter Drive-Thru Dinos, Centreville, May 20 – 31

Experience the fun and terror as you walk through a Jurrasic landscape featuring over 75 lifesize animatronic and still dinosaurs. You'll feel the roar as you get up close to touring dinos at the Bull Run Event Center. Tickets are $19/$25 per person weekday/weekend with add-ons available. May 20 2:00 -7:00; all other days 10:00 – 7:00.

McLean Day, Lewinsville Park, McLean, May 20 – 21

Celebrate McLean at this annual festival featuring live entertainment, carnival rides, a petting zoo, food trucks and more family fun. The rides area is open Friday night and all day Saturday while other activities are Saturday only. Admission is free; tickets are sold for rides and some activities. Friday 2:00 – 10:00; Saturday 11:00 – 5:00.

Perchfest Spring Edition, The Perch, Tysons May 21 – 22

Head to The Perch at Capital One Center for two afternoons of spring celebration. The fun includes live music, lawn games, food trucks, and the brand new Perch Putt. Admission is free but advanced registration is required. Saturday noon – 11:00, Sunday noon – 5:00.

Loudoun County Farm Tour, May 21 – 22

Head out on a self-guided tour of farms in the beautiful countryside of Loudoun County for an up-close experience with the county’s agricultural community. Meet local farmers, learn about their products and what they do, and enjoy a local meal. Check out our scenic drive on the Unpaved Roads of Loudoun County to add more fun to your day. 10:00 to 4:00 daily.

Strawberry Jubilee, Great Country Farms, May 21 – 22, 28 – 30

Head to Great Country Farms in beautiful Bluemont and join the longest-running strawberry festival in Loudoun County. The Jubilee is packed with live music, farm contests (including the daily Diaper Derby), and infamously yummy Donut Strawberry Shortcake. Timed entry tickets are $12/14 child/adult. 9:00 – 5:00.

Find more tasty: Strawberry Picking in Virginia, Fun U-Pick Farms Near DC.

Bike to Work Day, May 20

Celebrate bicycling as a clean, fun, and healthy way to get to work. The DC region's 21st Bike to Work Day celebration features pit stops throughout D.C., Maryland, and Virginia. The first 15,000 people to register and bike to a pit stop will receive a free T-shirt. Follow the link to register.

Explore area bike trails with our guides:

National Kids to Parks Day, Multiple Locations, May 21

National Kids to Parks Day is a celebration of outdoor play in our beautiful public lands. There are more in-person events in 2022 and everyone can celebrate with a family-friendly visit to local, state, and national parks in the Northern Virginia area. Download the free ParksPassport mobile app to plan your trip, earn badges, and even open Junior Ranger Booklets from your phone.

Plan your Kids to Parks Day outing with our park guides:

Brambleton Brew Fest, Brambleton, May 21

The annual Brew Fest returns with local beer from Northern Virginia, Maryland, and West Virginia, from breweries within an hour's drive of Brambleton. Food trucks, live music, and beer-related activities add to the fun. Enjoy unlimited pours with your general admission ticket. $45/50 online/at the gate; 1:00 – 6:00.

Quarterfest Crawl, Ballston, May 21

Visit and support Ballston businesses with a restaurant crawl featuring local artists, games, outdoor seating, and a neighborhood-wide scavenger hunt. Plan your own route and head out from noon – 7:00.

Memorial Day Weekend Events, May 28 – 30

After all of the cancelations last year, many annual Memorial Day events will return in 2022. Plan your long weekend with our complete guide: 2022 Memorial Day Weekend events in Northern Virginia. A few popular events are highlighted below.

Viva! Vienna! Festival, Vienna, May 28 – 30

ViVa! Vienna! is a family-friendly celebration of Memorial Day and the greater Vienna Community spirit with carnival rides, food, crafts, vendors, and entertainment. 100% of proceeds go to charitable, community, and humanitarian organizations. The popular festival is open Sat and Sun 10:00 – 10:00, Mon 10:00 – 6:00.

Wolf Trap Summer Blast-off!, May 29

“The President’s Own” United States Marine Band launches Wolf Trap National Park’s summer season with a program of concert band favorites, followed by a fireworks display. The event is free but arrive early to guarantee a spot; the park will close at capacity. 

Gates open at 6:30 pm for Lawn seating. Concert begins at 8:00. Fireworks viewing area opens following the performance, at approximately 9:30 pm and fireworks begin at approximately 9:45 pm. Free.

Memorial Day Festival and Parade, Falls Church, May 30

The Annual Memorial Day Parade and Festival offers a day of family fun. A 3K Fun Run and the Memorial Day Ceremony and Parade highlight the event, plus enjoy amusement rides, arts and crafts, food, pony rides, and live entertainment. A Veterans Ceremony will be held at 11:00. Free admission; 9:00 – 5:00.

More Fun Things to Do During May in Northern Virginia

Here are more ways to have fun during May in Northern VA.

Plan a whole month of fun spring outings with these related articles:

Strawberry Picking in Northern VA

May is strawberry season in Virginia. Head to the field for family-friendly fun with our complete guide to Strawberry Picking in Virginia and U-Pick Farms Near DC.

Enjoy Local Campgrounds and Cabins

Warm weather returns and that means camping time is here. Find the perfect place overnight in nature with our guide to 15 Great Northern Virginia Campgrounds for Camping Near DC.

Burke Lake Train and Carousel, Burke

The Burke Lake Park train and carousel open on weekends beginning in early April. Memorial Day weekend marks the shift to daily rides on the one-third-scale replica C. P. Huntington steam train.

Update: The carousel is currently closed for maintenance. Visitors can also take a spin on the carousel and walk or bike the 5-mile trail around Burke lake, rated one of the 10 best urban fitness trails in the nation by the American Hiking Society. The train and carousel are open weekends through May, then daily from Memorial Day through Labor Day.

Take a Scenic Drive

In May, trees are green and gardens are blooming. It's the perfect time for a scenic drive to small towns, pretty parks, and historic sites. Plan your fun with our guide to 8 Great Northern Virginia Scenic Drives Near Washington DC.

Plan a Spring Getaway in and Near Northern Virginia

Find beautiful and unique places to stay in and near Northern Virginia with our guides:

Annual May Events TBA or Canceled in 2022

These annual May events are TBA or canceled for 2022. We hope to see them all return next year.

Manassas Air Show, Manassas Airport, TBA

A day of family fun for aviation lovers. Skydivers, helicopters, jets, and aerobatic aircraft perform in the air while aircraft displays provide fun on the ground. Free (donations accepted to support charities); 10:00 – 4:00

Clifton Homes Tour, Clifton, TBA

The Annual Clifton Homes Tour offers guided tours of four elegant homes and two historic churches. This is a wonderful opportunity to explore the charming town of Clifton and visit Fairfax County's first winery.

Even if your favorite festival is canceled this year, there are still plenty of 2022 May events to help you celebrate this beautiful month. Check back later in May for our updated guide to June Events in Northern VA. 

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May events and things to do in Northern Virginia, Washington DC. Celebrate history, art, strawberries, Mom, nature, and more. Close out the month at Memorial Day events that honor America's fallen heroes.

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