In May, press was buzzing about the World War II fighter bombers that were based at the Manassas Regional Airport for the Victory Capitol Flyover for the 70th anniversary of Victory in Europe (VE) Day. While special events like the flyover, airshows, and the Manassas Runway 10k/5k race help put the airport on people’s radars, many may not know what happens every day at Virginia’s busiest General Aviation airport.
The first order of business is: why is “HEF” Manassas Regional Airport’s identifier code? Richard Allabaugh, who works in airport operations, asked the Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) the same question, but didn’t get a definitive answer.
The FAA uses a computer program to suggest allowable codes from which the airport owner can choose. Codes that are too similar to other airports within 200 nautical miles aren’t allowed. The airport was dedicated as Harry P. Davis Field in honor of Mayor Harry P. Davis, the City’s longest serving Mayor. As a result, “HPD” or “HDF” would seem like the best fit for an airport identifier.
However, Allabaugh wagers an educated guess that those identifiers were probably too close to existing codes and “HEF” was the closest to the airport’s original requested identifiers.
It’s important to note that Manassas is a General Aviation (GA) airport, not a commercial service airport like Dulles. The main difference is that GA airports do not have commercial airline service, which requires certification by the FAA. However, Manassas Regional voluntarily holds itself to the certification’s standards.
You’ll find many GA airports near major commercial airports because they help relieve air traffic congestion. Manassas Regional Airport was designated by the FAA to be the official reliever airport for Dulles and National airports. When comparing nearby airports, HEF has benefits that its competitors can’t touch.
Pilots arriving at Manassas don’t have to wait behind commercial airliners; aircraft aren’t charged landing fees, and to top it off, fuel is typically cheaper. In comparing today’s retail prices with those at Dulles, jet fuel is $2 cheaper per gallon, and low lead fuel is $3.50 cheaper. Lastly, unlike some GA airports, Manassas Regional offers U.S. Customs services. When considering that HEF and Dulles are both 30 miles away from downtown D.C., a popular destination for airport guests, Manassas is an attractive option.
More than 420 aircraft are based at HEF in hangars that are leased by individuals, private jet owners, and corporations. Last year, there were a total of 82,130 take-offs and landings, but so much more goes on here. For example, there are four flight schools where people can work toward earning their private pilot’s license.
Allabaugh says the airport has more than 25 business tenants. “Some businesses have offices on site because they prefer to be close to their hangars,” he says. “While others, like Aurora Flight Services, locate here so they have the facilities to test their equipment.”
These include companies that specialize in some kind of aeronautical component like aircraft management, charter companies, aircraft sales, and fixed-based operators (FBO). FBOs offer aircraft servicing and accommodations to transient pilots and their passengers.
The combined flight and business activity is important to the City of Manassas. According to the Virginia Airport System Economic Impact Study of 2011, Manassas Regional Airport contributed more than $234 million and 1,056 jobs to the local economy.
When pressed for interesting stories or celebrity sightings, Allabaugh’s lips are sealed. “There’s nothing I can tell you,” he says. “People choose us because we are discrete.”
Learn more about the airport online and be sure to check out the History tab to find out the cool story behind how it acquired its air traffic control tower.
Sponsored Post Celebrate America in style in Manassas July 4
Fireworks show, watermelon, and pie contests planned
On Saturday, July 4, 2015, Celebrate America with the City of Manassas from 3 to 10 p.m. in Historic Downtown Manassas.
The celebration begins with the Bicycle Decorating contest. At 5 p.m. visitors are invited to take part in a Watermelon-eating contest.
Next, Judges from around the City will lend their culinary expertise to judge the Apple and Peach Pie Baking Contest. This is Americana at its best. To sign up for these contests, visit visitmanassas.org.
Visitors can bring a blanket or a lawn chair to lay claim to a spot for viewing the best fireworks in Virginia. Beginning at 3 p.m., there will be children’s rides, food vendors, and other vendors. The celebration centers around the Harris Pavilion, the Manassas Museum and the Train Depot.
The City of Manassas loves pets, but pets do not love loud noises. Their ears are more sensitive and the City asks that pets be left at home in the air conditioning. This time of year, streets and sidewalks are hot enough to burn puppy paws.
Sponsored Post Manassas awarded for Civil War Sesquicentennial celebration
The City of Manassas, along with Prince William County, were the recipients of the Virginia Sesquicentennial of the American Civil War Commission’s Leadership Award for the area’s efforts in commemorating the 150th anniversary of the Civil War during the past seven years.
The City of Manassas partnered with Prince William County, the Prince William County Historic Preservation Division and many area museums, parks, and historic sites to coordinate dozens of local events that brought history to life for thousands of residents and visitors from across the country. The Prince William County/Manassas Committee began meeting in 2007, and helped plan and promote the signature 2011 Sesquicentennial commemoration at multiple sites across the city and county.
The local committee also fostered a strong partnership with the Virginia Sesquicentennial of the American Civil War Commission. The Manassas Museum hosted both the Commission’s traveling exhibit, An American Turning Point: The Civil War in Virginia, and the Legacy Project, an effort to scan and archive the Civil War-era documents of local residents. The city also twice hosted another of the Commission’s traveling exhibits, the award-winning Civil War 150 HistoryMobile.
On average, more than 11,000 visitors a day attended events in the city during the four-day July 2011 Sesquicentennial commemoration despite an average heat index of 103 to 105 degrees. The city saw a 14% increase in meals taxes and a 55% increase in sales taxes during the month of the event, and garnered significant national media attention for its expansive free programs.
The annual Manassas Civil War Weekend, scheduled for August 21-23 this year, was created as a result of the popularity of the 2011 and 2012 Sesquicentennial commemorations held throughout the City of Manassas. The Weekend’s program tells the story not just of Civil War battles, but of the War’s impact on civilians and African-Americans.
The Virginia Sesquicentennial of the American Civil War Commission was created by the General Assembly to plan and commemorate Civil War events in the Commonwealth. The Commission officially ended its work this year with a Memorial Day award ceremony and concert on the Capitol steps in Richmond. Virginia House Speaker William J. Howell served as Chairman, and State Senator Charles J. Colgan, Sr., served as Vice-Chairman of the Commission.
Sponsored Post You’ll be surprised at the local artifacts featured in the ‘Hometown Tourist’ exhibit in Manassas
Manassas Museum ‘Hometown Tourist” exhibit coming to Bull Run Regional Library
Trade your suitcase for some walking shoes and be a Manassas hometown tourist this summer. If walking shoes aren’t an option, take a virtual tour.
The new Manassas Historical Sites Map Tour lets you click on a map to find in-depth information about the city’s eight historic properties. The tour includes photographs, little-known stories about people and places associated with the site, behind-the-scenes glimpses, and information about visiting in person. Visit manassasmuseum.org/tour to access the tour.
The Manassas Museum is taking to the road for a new summer travelling exhibit, Hometown Tourist, at the Bull Run Regional Library. The exhibit features artifacts, old post cards, and archaeology from nine area historic sites: The Southern Railway Depot, the Hopkins Candy Factory, Liberia Plantation, the Stone House, the Manassas City Cemetery, the Manassas Museum (built on land where Eastern College once stood), the Manassas Industrial School, the former Grace United Methodist Church (now Bull Run Unitarian), and the Albert Speiden House.
Most of the City’s nationally significant historic sites are open free every day and offer interpretive signage that tells their story. Take along the mobile version of the Manassas Historical Sites Map Tour as you visit the Manassas Museum, the Southern Railway Depot, the Hopkins Candy Factory, Liberia Plantation, Mayfield and Cannon Branch Earthwork Forts, and the Manassas Industrial School/Jennie Dean Memorial to enhance your experience.
If you would like to learn even more about the sites, guided walking tours of Historic Downtown Manassas are offered every Thursday and Friday at Noon, and Liberia House tours are offered Sundays at Noon through the summer. Meet at the Manassas Museum, 9101 Prince William Street, for the Downtown tours, and at Liberia, 8601 Portner Avenue, for the Sunday tours.
Call 703-268-1873 or visit manassasmuseum.org for more information.
Sponsored Post History thundering toward Manassas Railway Festival
Norfolk Southern is bringing Steam Engine 611 to the City of Manassas during the 21st Annual Manassas Heritage Railway Festival on Saturday, June 6. The “611” belongs to the Virginia Museum of Transportation, but Norfolk Southern will have it out for 11 round-trip single day excursions beginning with the Railway Festival on Saturday.
Along with excursion rides on 611, there will be VRE rides for the younger set. Also featured at the Railway Festival are model trains, train memorabilia, live entertainment and great food. This is an event not to be missed!
So, what does it take to “Fire Up 611?” Other than 10,000 hours of volunteer labor, it takes about 25,000 gallons of water for each trip of about 100 miles. This Steam Engine rolled off the line on May 29, 1950 and traveled nearly three million miles before its retirement in 1957 when diesel became the more price-conscious option. 611 was in such great condition, she was selected to pull the company’s “farewell to steam” excursions in October 1959.
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In 1981, Norfolk Southern president Robert Claytor sent 611 to the Norris Steam Shop in Birmingham, Alabama. The 611 became the star of the Norfolk Southern steam program pulling excursions throughout the eastern U.S.
While previously limited to the N&W’s system, 611 was able to travel as far south as Florida, as far north as New York, and as far west as Chicago. For 22 years she traversed the mainlines recreating the golden age of American railroading and inspiring a new generation of steam fans. Norfolk Southern decided to end the program in 1994. The 611 returned to her hometown of Roanoke, Va. to once again serve as a static display.
If you prefer not to take a ride, 611 will be available for picture opportunities at the 21st Annual Manassas Heritage Railway Festival at about 1 p.m. For more information on 611, visit fireup611.org.
On Friday, June 5, from 5 to 9 p.m. come to First Friday in Historic Downtown. The June First Friday features corn hole playing and corn hole tournaments throughout downtown, plus, great food and wonderful shops.
On Sunday, June 7, get ready for the Taste of Historic Manassas from noon to 4:30 p.m. This annual event transforms Historic Downtown Manassas into a lively festival with local entertainment and lots of great food.
For more information on these and other events in the City of Manassas, visit visitmanassas.org.
Close to 100 people gathered at the Center for the Arts for the inaugural Manassas Business Appreciation Breakfast where they celebrated the City’s entrepreneurial spirit and thriving business community. The City of Manassas and the Prince William Chamber of Commerce hosted the event to recognize local businesses.
In his opening remarks, Mayor Harry J. Parrish II thanked the audience for choosing Manassas and “for all that you bring to the community.” Beyond creating jobs and boosting the local economy, he acknowledged the many business leaders who serve on boards and commissions and participate in the robust calendar of events.
Those in the room took a moment to welcome the newcomers to downtown, which include Amy’s Bridal, Totally Vintage Designs, and Scatter Seeds as well as the soon-to-open Cut Rate Barbershop and Jitterbug ice cream shop. H Mart and Firehouse Subs, which recently opened on Liberia Avenue, were recognized as well. Dalena Kanouse, the CEO of MTCI Management and Training Consultants, Inc., and incoming chair of the Prince William Chamber, pointed out that her well-established company was once a newcomer to the City of Manassas. She told the tight-knit business community that MTCI moved from Dumfries to take advantage of the opportunities in Manassas and are happy to be here.
Existing businesses in the City are flourishing, too. Fauquier Bank relocated within the City to accommodate its anticipated expansion. Malone’s opened a second floor to accommodate their growing business. Another expansion in the City is Aurora Flight Science who are sub-leasing the airport’s FlightWorks hanger and envision creating 50 new jobs over the next several years. B. Hayes Framme, advisor for infrastructure and development for the Commonwealth of Virginia, acknowledged that most businesses have “Chief ‘Everything’ Officers.” He also identified high-growth opportunities in Virginia like cyber security and biotechnology and discussed incentives and policies that support job creation.
The City strives to create a business-friendly environment and is always interested in speaking to prospective business owners who wish to join this supportive community. For more information, call the economic development department at 703-257-8881.
Mayor Harry J. Parrish II congratulated Whitt’s Harley-Davidson this week on their 30th Anniversary. Whitt’s is the oldest dealership in Northern Virginia and will be celebrating their anniversary with year long activities. This includes taking part in Rolling Thunder on Sunday, May 24 and an open house on Saturday, May 23 from 9:30 a.m. to 4:30 p.m.
“We enjoy celebrating these milestones with City businesses,” said City Manager William Patrick Pate. “The City looks forward to the next 30 years working with Whitt’s Harley-Davidson.”
This dealership has been in business since March 1985. The current Center Street location, formerly Southern States, was built in 1957. It still has the railroad tracks in the back of the property. In June 1998, T. Ellsworth Davison purchased the property and relocated his dealership from a 5,000 square foot building to the current 30,000 square foot building. The renovated showroom gleams with new paint and chromed Harley motorcycles.
The City of Manassas values all of its businesses, whether they are new to the City, like Manassas Olive Oil or Totally Vintage Designs, or they are celebrating a monumental anniversary, like Whitt’s Harley-Davidson.
Also celebrating a momentous anniversary is Heltzel Mortgage. They are celebrating 50 years in business. Originally founded in 1965 as the Robert Heltzel Company, became the Hetzel Mortgage Corporation in 1980. Heltzel Mortgage will be celebrating their 50th with a free community concert at the Harris Pavilion on May 29 from 7 to 11 p.m.
The City of Manassas is proud of Whitt’s Harley Davidson and all of those businesses that have such a long history of success in Manassas. Especially during Business Appreciation Month, it is important to make acknowledgements of these successes. If you or someone you know is celebrating a milestone anniversary, let us know at 703-257-8881.
Sponsored Post 21st Annual Manassas Heritage Railway Festival
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Can you hear the far off whistle? Can you feel the rumble as the train lumbers down the tracks?
Get ready! The 21st Annual Manassas Heritage Railway Festival is on June 6 from 10 a.m. to 3 p.m. in Historic Downtown Manassas. This is a family-friendly celebration of railroad history.
There will be live performances on two stages. Folsom Prisoners, Justin Trawick and High Grass Bluegrass Band are a few of the performers lined up for the day. Enjoy great food and lots to see and do. Take a train ride on the a VRE train with a princess for $6 per person, or just peruse the memorabilia and the model trains under the Harris Pavilion.
On Saturday and Sunday, June 6 and 7, the inaugural trips of the 611 Steam Train will be rolling through the City. Norfolk & Western 611 will pull passengers from Manassas to Front Royal and back. This is part of Norfolk Southern’s 21st Century Steam program.
Owned by the Virginia Museum of Transportation, 611 recently underwent a massive restoration after more than two decades in retirement. The Steam Engine will be available for photos near the Harris Pavilion after its Saturday trip. Tickets for both trips start at $109 and may be purchased online.
Whether you are a railroad enthusiast or just looking for something to do, this event is a great way to spend a Saturday.
On Friday, June 5, from 5 to 9 p.m. come to First Friday in Historic Downtown. The June First Friday features corn hole playing and corn hole tournaments throughout downtown, plus, great food and wonderful shops.
On Sunday, June 7, get ready for the Taste of Historic Manassas from noon to 4:30 p.m. This annual event transforms Historic Downtown Manassas into a lively festival with local entertainment and lots of great food. For more information on these and other events in the City of Manassas, go to visitmanassas.org.
The City of Manassas partnered today with the Prince William Chamber of Commerce to recognize city business owners.
A special breakfast was held at the Center for the Arts at the Candy Factory in Downtown Manassas.
Business owners were invited to attend the event free of charge.
See photos from the event
Sponsored Post For City of Manassas business owners, breakfast is on us
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City of Manassas, Prince William Chamber of Commerce team to recognize city businesses
To thank the businesses owners and operators who choose to be located in the city, the City of Manassas and the Prince William Chamber are hosting a free Manassas Business Appreciation Breakfast on Wednesday, May 6, from 8 – 10 a.m. at the Center for the Arts, located at 9419 Battle Street.
“Seats are going fast,” says Economic Development Director Patrick Small. “We want to honor as many of our businesses as possible at this exclusive event.” Local businesses are encouraged to spend the morning networking and hearing from the Mayor, Council and State Economic Development Leaders. To register for the event, contact Anita Duecaster at the Chamber at 571-765-1876. Space is limited.
Each year in May the Commonwealth of Virginia pauses to recognize the many contributions that private enterprise and entrepreneurs make to the quality of life for residents. At a recent City Council meeting, Mayor Harry J. Parrish II proclaimed May as Business Appreciation Month in the City of Manassas.
The City of Manassas has more than 1,400 business establishments within its boundaries and that number is growing every day. More than 14,000 people commute into the city to work each day with about 7,000 commuting out of the City. City of Manassas businesses range from new start-ups to Fortune 500 corporations.
There are unique shops, one-of-a-kind restaurants offering a spectrum of cuisines, two breweries and a brand new distillery. The Manassas Regional Airport is home to more than 25 businesses employing more than 1,050 people. The City’s Economic Development Department partners with the Chamber of Commerce to celebrate the business community and all that they bring to the community.
The breakfast is free to one registered person per business.
This promoted post is sponsored by City of Manassas, Virginia in recognition of the many business owners who help grow and sustain community.
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Starting May 1, the Manassas Museum will debut their newest exhibit on the fire, rescue and police equipment used in the community.
The museum will be hosting a reception at 6 p.m. and serve refreshments to residents looking to learn more about public safety history in the City of Manassas.
One of the unique highlights of the exhibit is the fact that back in the 1960s, responders in a hearse answered emergency response calls.
Before the first public safety group, the Manassas Volunteer Rescue Squad, was created in 1966, it was the Baker Funeral Home that would bring patients for medical treatment and respond to emergency scenes.
Manassas didn’t see a modernized police and fire department structure until the 1950s, and relied on mainly volunteer services.
This exhibit, which displays the evolution of Manassas and its public safety organizations, coincides with the World Police and Fire Games, which are being hosted in Prince William County this summer.
“Our Fire, Rescue and Police personnel run into a building when others run out,” said Mayor Harry J. Parrish II. “It is that courage and compassion for others that helps keep this City safe and well protected.”
The Manassas Museum will showcase the exhibit until July 15.
“I hope visitors and residents will come out for this exhibit. Our Police, and Fire and Rescue staff are top in their field and our volunteers are some of the most dedicated people I’ve met,” said City Manager W. Patrick Pate.
Sponsored Post Look up, see great art in Historic Downtown Manassas
If you are walking or driving through Historic Downtown Manassas, make sure to look up at the light poles that line the city streets. There are 60 original pieces of art hanging from the downtown light poles.
Over the winter months, Historic Manassas, Inc. in partnership with the City of Manassas, held a Banner Art Competition. This competition was for artists from Virginia, Maryland and Washington, D.C. to create original art that, if selected, would hang from the City of Manassas’ light poles. The competition was the brainchild of Debbie Haight from Historic Manassas, Inc. who formed a small committee to make the dream a reality.
More than 130 pieces of art were submitted for the competition. In February, members of the community gathered to select the 60 pieces of art that would hang on the light poles. This gathering included City Council members, students, business leaders, and community members. From the 60 selected pieces of art, one grand prize winner, who will receive $1,000, will be announced at an awards presentation during the spring gallery walk on May 1, 2015.
All summer long residents and visitors are invited to look at the banners and select their favorite for the “people’s choice” winner. In the fall, the artist who painted the people’s favorite piece will receive $500. A walking tour brochure of the banners will be available after May 1. This will have information about each piece and information on how to vote in the “people’s choice” competition.
So, the next time you are in Historic Downtown Manassas, make sure to take the time to look up and appreciate the art.
Sponsored Post It’s time for fresh, locally grown food
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On April 9 the City of Manassas Farmer’s Market opened for the season. This is the 24th season the City’s Farmer’s Market has been delivering fresh produce and goods to residents and visitors of the City of Manassas. On Thursdays, the Farmer’s Market is located in the Harris Pavilion and on Saturdays it is located in parking lot B or the water tower lot. Both markets are open from 7:30 a.m. to 1 p.m. In June, July and August there is a summer evening market from 5 to 8 p.m. in the Harris Pavilion.
About five years ago the City’s Farmer’s Market became a SNAP distributor by applying to the USDA Food and Nutrition Service. This opened the door for people that are receiving assistance to purchase fresh fruits and vegetable from the market. In addition, Historic Manassas, Inc. has formed a partnership with INOVA, who supplied matching funds for dollars spent by SNAP recipients. The City of Manassas Farmers Market was one of the very first in this region to be able to offer this service to customers.
Jeff Adams has been selling Walnut Hill Farms poultry, eggs, pork, beef and lamb at the market for about five years. His motto is “from birth to plate, we know what we ate.” Jeff is a former biology teacher and telephone company employee. He bought his farm in 2001 after saying goodbye to corporate America.
Ron Burleson of Skyline Premium Meats has been a part of the City of Manassas Farmer’s Market for seven seasons. Burleson and his wife, Suzy run a farm in Unionville, Virginia, where they raise calves. Ron and Suzy also maintain a greenhouse, and depending on the season, produce eggs. They raise an array of annuals; from hanging baskets to potted vegetable plants and beautiful handmade Christmas wreaths in the winter season.
These are just two of the many wonderful vendors at the City of Manassas Farmer’s Market. Visit the City of Manassas Farmer’s Market soon!
Sponsored Post Manassas Airshow Bringing in the Big Jets
On May 2, 2015, from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. the Manassas Airshow is bringing in Breitling Jet Team, the largest professional civilian flight jet team. This team demonstrates aerobatics with precision, speed, mastery and style. The Breitling Team coordinates a meticulous ballet in which planes sometimes fly within three meters of each other at speeds of over 700 kilometers per hour.
They are really a sight to see and the event is free to the public.
Also performing this year are the 3rd Dimension Parachute Team, the American Helicopters Demonstration Team, Andrew McKenna P-51 and T-6 Aerobatics, the Flying Circus Stearman Flight, Scott Francis MXS Aerobatics, Jack Knutson Extra 300 Aerobatics, Matt Chapman CAP 580 Aerobatics, Randy Devere CJ-6 Aerobatics and there will be an RC Modeler Jet Demonstration. Along with these performers, the Manassas Airshow offers aircraft displays, military re-enactors and much more.
Also at the Manassas Regional Airport on April 26 at 7:30 a.m. runners will be getting ready to race the Manassas Runway 10K/5K presented by the Bull Run and Manassas Rotary Clubs. This is the flattest run in the area, being held on the actual runway.
The Texas Raiders B-17 will be at the Manassas Regional Airport from May 3 to 6 offering rides on their B-17, which is one of only eleven B-17 flying fortresses still flying today. On May 8 from noon to 1 p.m. 15 historically sequenced warbird formations will participate in the World War II Victory Capitol Flyover in honor of the 70th Anniversary of Victory in Europe (VE) Day. While several of these majestic warbirds are visiting the Manassas Regional Airport, they will be giving tours, May 9-10 from 9 a.m. to 5 p.m.
For more information on any of these events, visit manassascity.org/airportevents.
Sponsored Post Manassas celebrates Founders’ Day on First Friday, April 3
When you say the words “Founders’ Day” it brings back images of a kinder, gentler time when people shared stories on front porches. The City of Manassas is celebrating Founders’ Day on First Friday, April 3, with restaurant specials, shops staying open late and, of course, birthday cake.
Stores and restaurants will be focusing on the history of the city and the buildings they inhabit.
This celebration is the brainchild of Councilman Ian Lovejoy. He was curious about the actual date the town was founded and in researching that date, found that the City was recognized as a town on April 2, 1873 by the General Assembly. The area was known as Tudor Hall, prior to that, until William S. Fewell, who owned the land, laid out the first six blocks and began selling lots.
The first official council meeting was held on May 17, 1873. Due to the town’s growth over the years, the town submitted a request to the General Assembly and in 1975 officially became the City of Manassas. From humble beginnings in 1873 as a half mile town concentrated along the railroad tracks, the City of Manassas grew to 10 square miles of homes, schools, shops and restaurants and more than 40,000 residents.
This Founders’ Day, come celebrate with the City of Manassas in Historic Downtown from 6 to 9 p.m. The Manassas Museum will host a City of Manassas trivia contest and a book signing. Love, Charley will offer cake, The Bone will have a beer garden and City Square Café is offering a three course dinner special and encouraging diners to dress in period attire. These are just a few of the offerings for First Friday. For more offerings and information, visit visitmanassas.org.
Sponsored Post Manassas Restaurant Week is coming: 2-course meals for $25
Have you been to Historic Downtown Manassas lately? Did you know there are numerous one-of-a-kind restaurants and shops?
To celebrate our culinary diversity, the Historic Manassas Restaurant Alliance is hosting Spring Restaurant Week.
What does this mean for you and me? It means that from March 22 – 28 diners can have two course meals for $25 and three course meals for $35.
Each restaurant will offer restaurant specific specials during the week as well. One-of-a-kind restaurants in the City of Manassas include Carmello’s, City Square Cafe, City Tavern, Deli Depot, El Cactus, Foster’s Grille, Ground Central Station, Katerina’s Greek, Mackey’s American Pub, Malones of Manassas, Monza, Okra’s, Old Towne Sports Pub, Philadelphia Tavern, The Bone and Zandra’s.
There’s something for every taste in the City of Manassas. This is the second Restaurant Week city restaurants have offered, the first being in September 2014. The Historic Manassas Restaurant Alliance was chartered to enhance the culinary experience of Manassas and to hold a Taste of Historic Manassas event every June and restaurant weeks in September and March.
The city’s newest restaurant, C.J. Finz is offering half a pound of shrimp or half a dozen oysters and a sandwich of your choice plus a glass of beer or wine for $25. Philadelphia Tavern is offering two Philly cheesesteaks and two microbrews for $25. Many of the restaurants are participation. To see all of the offerings during restaurant week, visit manassascity.org/restaurantweek.
This promoted post was written by the City of Manassas.
Sponsored Post Manassas City Hall art exhibit: Water, water everywhere
Have you ever watched the Ebb & Flow of water as it laps against the bank, whether it is a river or the ocean? Photographer Hannele Lahti explores the visual fabric of life that is water in the next exhibit at The Hall at Manassas City Hall. Ebb & Flow is a photo exhibit capturing the fleeting moment when all of the variables meld together and are stilled. The exhibit opens on March 17 and runs through April 24 at City Hall, 9027 Center Street in Manassas, Virginia.
Hannele Lhati is a nationally-recognized documentary and fine art photographer who creates images that explore the wonder and fragility of the natural world. She is the owner of Hannele Lahti Photography and a contract photographer for National Geographic. As a child, Lahti grew up on a lake and learned to respect the natural world, to honor its beauty as she sat by the water’s edge with her grandfather.
Exhibits in The Hall rotate on a monthly basis and include different forms of visual art. Visiting The Hall is free and open to the public from 8 a.m. to 6 p.m. and later when evening meetings are held in the building.
Sponsored Post First Friday March Madness in Downtown Manassas
- Historic Manassas Inc.
- Address: 9431 West Street Manassas, Virginia 20110
- Website: visitmanassas.org
Historic Downtown Manassas is going a little “mad” for First Friday. On March 6 from 6 to 9 p.m., City restaurants, retailers and the Manassas Museum are offering specials and special entertainment.
The list participating merchants is growing and can be viewed at .visitmanassas.org.
Each store and restaurant is selecting their own way to celebrate March with either a Mardi Gras, St. Patrick’s Day or other March theme.
The Manassas Museum will offer free admission and 10% off at Echoes, their gift store.
The Osbourn High School String Quartet will serenade museum visitors.
There will be book signings, drink specials and much more around the Historic Downtown of the City of Manassas. Come for dinner and stay to shop and explore.
Inspired by the success of the monthly event concept held in other localities, First Friday in Historic Downtown was created by the Historic Manassas, Inc. promotions committee to enhance tourism and entertainment offerings in the City of Manassas.
The initial First Friday event was held in February 2014 and has grown and evolved. Some months feature roving musicians and caricature artists, while other months feature sidewalk art, games or special foods.
Sponsored Post Manassas turned a public place into a public art space
Manassas City Hall doubles as public art gallery
The Hall at City Hall is open with an inaugural exhibit by the p-ART-ners, a professional network of Manassas area artists. What is The Hall at City Hall? It is the new place for local artists to display their work. When Councilman Ian Lovejoy talked to City Manager W. Patrick Pate about replacing the 1980’s artwork in City Hall at low or no cost, an idea was born.
In 2009 the City Council created an Arts and Tourism District in the Historic Downtown area of the city. With City Hall being right in the middle of the district, why not bring public art inside City Hall? Staff was tasked with learning about gallery space and making the area ready for artist displays.
Local artist Michele Frantz, Center for the Arts Gallery Director Anna Mish, and Osbourn High School Art Teacher Sarah Weaver were consulted to help with preparations for the opening. A picture railing already existed in the first floor hallway, so very little was needed to turn the hallway into The Hall.
P-ART-ners volunteered to be the first group to display their art in The Hall. The exhibit features an eclectic mix of vibrant scenery, Civil War portraits, and historic sites from more than 10 different artists. There is something for almost any taste. The exhibit runs from Feb. 13 through March 13. Exhibits will rotate in and out of The Hall and will include different forms of visual art. Visiting The Hall is free and open to the public from 8 a.m. to 6 p.m. and later when evening meetings are held in the building.
“It is our hope that this new gallery space will be a great place for the public to visit,” said City Manager W. Patrick Pate. “Maybe it will inspire artists of the future.”
The preceding post was written by the City of Manassas under a marketing agreement with Potomac Local. (more…)
More new shops, restaurants opening in Historic Downtown Manassas
The City of Manassas and its downtown development partner, Historic Manassas Inc., have been gradually moving away from referring to Old Town in favor of the moniker Historic Downtown Manassas. This helps to avoid being confused with that other “Old Town” in Northern Virginia.
But in this case, the title seems to resonate because the City is welcoming a host of new businesses to its historic district.
Over the past 12 months more than 16 new businesses have opened or announced their intent to relocate into the Virginia Main Street Community. As 2014 drew to a close, the City had already welcomed new retail outlet Records and Rarities; professional office users Caitlan Jordan, Attorney at Law, and SCS Integrated Support Services; personal services provider the Man Cave; and restaurants the Bone and Zandra’s.
In January a regional favorite, Malone’s, expanded to offer consumers a more casual dining and bar area on the second floor to complement the fine dining experience locals and visitors have grown to love.
Beginning late last year, a series of announced closures by long-time business owners in the Historic Downtown Manassas left development officials scrambling to identify new business prospects. They need not have worried as the City proved both its resiliency and attractiveness to entrepreneurs who are rushing in to fill the spaces being vacated.
“What really happened was a generational opportunity for a new wave of small business owners to realize their dreams of opening or relocating their businesses in our Downtown. In many instances these spaces are some of the most attractive and high profile storefronts available,” City Manager Pat Pate told the Old Town Business Association.
A number of business owners obviously agree. Historic Downtown Manassas has recently announced that new business openings are pending by retail operators Scatter Seeds, a purveyor Fair Trade goods and local artisan products, Amy’s Bridal (formerly of Woodbridge), Manassas Olive Oil and Totally Vintage Design (formerly of Haymarket); raw bar and restaurant CJ Finz and ice cream parlor Jitterbug will join the crowd as will CutRate Barbershop and the NEW School.
In addition, and proving that Manassas is becoming a living destination of choice in addition to a retail and dining mecca, two new urban style apartment projects have been approved which will bring almost 200 new studio, one and two-bedroom luxury units into the Historic Downtown.
Economic Development Director Patrick Small and Historic Manassas Inc. Executive Director Debbie Haight say there are still a few opportunities left for new businesses that may have missed the initial rush to open. One of these, the site of the former Opera House Gourmet, is possibly the most desirable retail location in the City.
Located diagonally across Center Street from Harris Pavilion, it is the most prominent and highly visible storefront as people enter Downtown. Small and Haight say this and the few remaining retail spaces still on the market won’t be vacant long. In fact, several confidential business announcements are pending.
The preceding post was written by the City of Manassas under a marketing agreement with Potomac Local.
Manassas Mayor Parrish highlights the City’s many successes in 2014
Recently, Mayor Harry J. Parrish II delivered the State of the City of Manassas address. The address was delivered in a video message to city residents. In his address, Mayor Parrish welcomed new businesses to the city, like El Cactus, Don Lencho, The Bone, Fire House Subs, Zandras and the Olde Town Man Cave. He also spoke about expanding businesses including Heritage Brewing, Bad Wolf Brewing, Fauquier Bank and a few others.
Mayor Parrish spoke about the many family friendly events held in the city, Manassas City Public Schools and the summer camps held by the Fire and Rescue and Police Departments for Osbourn High School Students. He talked about the citizens group who asked that City Hall be named in honor of Mayor Marvin Gillum and how their civic involvement and community spirit led not only to raise funds for the signs, but funds for the upkeep of those signs as well.
Mayor Parrish talked about the City of Manassas’ first Citizen Satisfaction Survey held in 2014. The survey set a baseline for future surveys and will help determine priorities in coming years. This survey is available at www.manassascity.org/css. One of the findings of the survey was that city staff ranks 20 percentage points higher than the national benchmark in customer service.
Mayor Parrish also spoke about economic development for the City of Manassas including the hiring of a new Economic Development Director and a greater focus on business attraction, retention and expansion. In closing, Mayor Parrish said, “For those who appreciate independence and access, the historic City of Manassas enjoys a strategic location in Northern Virginia where Old Town charm combines with a new city spirit so you experience a sense of place, a sense of community and a sense of opportunity. To watch the State of the City in its entirety, visit www.manassascity.org.
The preceding post was written by the City of Manassas.