Memorial Day Weekend events in Northern Virginia honor the fallen with ceremonies and salutes. The long weekend also kicks off the summer with festivals and fireworks. Our guide to 2022 Memorial Day weekend events in Northern Virginia covers activities in and near Alexandria, Arlington, Fairfax, Loudoun, and Prince William Counties.
Last year, many of the annual Memorial Day activities on our list were canceled, but most have returned in 2022.
Memorial Day Weekend events are listed below in two sections. Follow the links for additional details about each event.
- First are Memorial Day events in Northern Virginia that salute the brave men and women who paid the ultimate sacrifice in service to our country.
- Next, we highlight events that mark the unofficial start of summer with fun and festivals during the long weekend.
Memorial Day Weekends Events in Northern Virginia Honor the Fallen
Annual events at National Park sites and local towns honor our nation's fallen. Gather to remember and salute the brave heroes who gave all for their country at these Memorial Day weekend events in Northern Virginia.
“Flags In”, Arlington National Cemetery, May 26
For more than 60 years, the 3rd U.S. Infantry Regiment (The Old Guard) has honored America’s fallen heroes by placing American flags at grave sites for service members buried at Arlington National Cemetery.
The tradition begins at 2:00 pm on the Thursday before Memorial Day weekend. Within four hours, the soldiers place flags in front of more than 228,000 headstones and at the bottom of about 7,000 niche rows in the cemetery’s Columbarium Courts and the Niche Wall. Visitors may watch, but do not participate in placing flags.
Flags remain at the grave sites throughout the Memorial Day weekend. It’s an incredibly moving sight, and a popular time to visit.
Flowers of Remembrance Day, Arlington National Cemetery, May 28
During the inaugural Fields of Remembrance Day, the public is invited to place flowers at the Tomb of the Unknown Soldier. Honor and respect the sacrifice of fallen heroes by placing your own or provided flowers at the Tomb. ANC historians will share the history of this ceremony at 10:00 and 2:30. Flowers may be placed from 9:00 to 4:00.
Wreath Laying Ceremonies, Arlington National Cemetery
Many military organizations conduct annual memorial services, wreath-laying ceremonies, and observances at Arlington during the Memorial Day weekend. Many ceremonies and special events are free and open to the public. 2022 ceremony details will be updated once they are announced.
- An Armed Forces Full Honors Wreath-Laying Ceremony in honor of President John F. Kennedy is held at the Kennedy gravesite. The ceremony begins at 9:50 and the public is welcome.
- Traditionally, Arlington National Cemetery hosts a National Memorial Day Observance to honor America's fallen military service members. The observance includes wreath-laying at the Tomb of the Unknown Soldier and an observance program in the Memorial Amphitheater.
- The Women In Military Service For America Memorial, located at the gateway to Arlington National Cemetery, holds a ceremony that includes formal military honors, a keynote address, wreath-laying, and scattering of rose petals in tribute to departed comrades. Members of the public are invited to join in the personal tribute segment of the program.
Plan Your Visit: 5 Ways to Explore Arlington National Cemetery
Rolling to Remember, Fairfax, May 27 – 30
The annual Rolling to Remember (formerly Ride of the Patriots®) is a four-day event that includes the largest police escorted motorcycle ride to Rolling Thunder®, the largest single-day motorcycle event in the world. The ride and all events originate at Patriot Harley-Davidson in the City of Fairfax. 2022 events include multiple rides and activities in DC. Follow the link for full schedule details.
Memorial Day Ceremony, Falls Church, May 30
Honor those who paid the ultimate sacrifice for our country at an 11:00 AM ceremony at the Veteran's Plaza. (See below for parade and other activities.)
Memorial Day Ceremony, Leesburg, May 30
This annual observance commemorates those who have lost their lives in battle, serving the United States, and recognizes the brave military men and women who serve our country. Held at the Loudoun County Court House, this ceremony is highlighted by the reverent laying of wreaths at several war memorials. 10:00
Memorial Day Weekend Events in Northern VA Kick Off Summer Fun
The summer season kicks off with Memorial Day weekend events throughout Northern VA weekend. Multi-day annual festivals and single-day events give residents and visitors plenty of choices for fun things to do in the Northern Virginia area during the long Memorial Day weekend.
Viva! Vienna! Festival, Vienna, May 28 – 30
ViVa! Vienna! is a family and community-oriented celebration of Memorial Day and the greater Vienna Community spirit. The weekend-long festival features carnival rides, food, crafts, vendors, and live entertainment. 100% of proceeds go to charitable, community, and humanitarian organizations. Sat and Sun 10:00 – 10:00, Mon 10:00 – 6:00.
Strawberry Jubilee, Great Country Farms, May 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.
Sandlot Cars and Coffee, The Boro Tysons, May 28
Check our cool cars and sip tasty coffee at The Boro Tysons, one of the best urban parks in Northern VA. The event is free, no registration needed. 10:00 – 1:00.
Wolf Trap Summer Blast-off!, May 29
“The President’s Own” United States Marine Band launches the summer season at Wolf Trap National Park with a program of concert band favorites and 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. Fireworks viewing area opens following the performance, at approximately 9:30 pm. Fireworks begin at approximately 9:45 pm.
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.
Annual Alexandria Jazz Festival, Alexandria, Moved to June 17
The Annual Alexandria Jazz Festival has been to June and combined with the Portside in Old Town Festival. The festival, which used to be held on Memorial Day weekend, features a variety of musicians and diverse styles of jazz throughout the day.
Northern Virginia Waterparks Open for the 2022 Season
Memorial Day weekend events in Northern Virginia include the opening of waterparks throughout the region (cross your fingers for warm weather). The Water Mine Family Swimmin’ Hole at Lake Fairfax, Signal Bay and Splashdown Waterparks in Manassas, and NOVA Waterparks open for the season on May 28th. Check individual pool sites for details.
Whichever 2022 Memorial Day weekend events in Northern Virginia you choose to attend, we wish everyone a safe and rain-free weekend.