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Special Events

Join us this fall at Mount Vernon for a fun-filled line up of special events. Enjoy family-friendly festivals, exclusive culinary experiences & more as you discover the splendor of George Washington's estate.

Archaeology in Action Tour
Fridays in August
11 a.m. - 11:45 a.m.

Take an inside look at the history of the Mount Vernon archaeology program and the current discovery efforts in progress. What exciting things have been found on the grounds over the years? Learn more about what has been discovered about our founding father by excavating the Washington family’s “midden,” or trash bin. Hear how archaeology tells us more about the slaves who lived at Mount Vernon. See current excavation sites including the slave burial ground and Washington family kitchen.

Ice Cream Demonstrations
Saturdays in August
10:30 a.m. - 12:30 p.m.

George Washington’s home, Mount Vernon, welcomes visitors to learn more about a fascinating side to culinary life in the 18th century through ice cream making demonstrations every Saturday in August from 10:30 a.m. to 12:30 p.m. Visitors can watch as costumed staff provides a glimpse into the making of one of George Washington’s favorite desserts! Mount Vernon’s team will explain the fascinating process and use reproduction period equipment to demonstrate how ice cream was made in the 18th century.

National Purple Heart Day
Thursday, August 7
1 p.m. – 2:30 p.m.

Honor past and present recipients of America’s oldest military award on National Purple Heart Day. Join “General Washington” at his home for a musical performance by the U.S. Air Force Brass Quintet and a special ceremony featuring remarks by the General himself. After the ceremony, a special wreathlaying will take place at the Purple Heart Monument, the origin point of the nationwide Purple Heart Trail.

Gentleman Distiller: Whiskey Tasting & Dinner
Friday, September 12

Learn more about Washington’s role as “Distiller in Chief” at this exclusive event! The evening begins with a reception at the Distillery & Gristmill, where guests will get a first-hand look at how whiskey was produced in Washington’s time. The event continues on the estate with a brief talk by Mount Vernon’s resident distiller, followed by a whiskey tasting and seated dinner at the Mount Vernon Inn. Tickets are available beginning August 4 and are $125 per person.

Colonial Market & Fair
Saturday & Sunday, September 20 – 21
9 a.m. – 5 p.m.

The annual Colonial Market & Fair at Mount Vernon features dozens of America’s finest craftspeople and plenty of family fun! Fifty colonial-attired artisans demonstrate 18th-century crafts and sell traditional wares such as baskets, woodcarvings, tin and ironwork, leatherworkings, weavings, furniture, and much more. “General Washington” will be on hand overseeing the lively Revolutionary War military drills and 18th-century entertainment including music, fire-eating, sword-swallowing, puppet and magic shows, plus hearty specialty food for sale on site. This weekend only, Potomac River sightseeing cruises, courtesy of Spirit Cruises and Potomac Riverboat Company, are free of charge.

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Fall Wine Festival & Sunset Tour
Friday, Saturday, and Sunday, October 3-5
6 p.m. – 9 p.m.

Enjoy live blues and spectacular views of the Potomac River while sampling wine from 16 Virginia wineries. Visitors learn about the successes and failures of our Founding Father’s wine endeavors, enjoy live blues music, and meet “George and Martha Washington” on the Mansion's piazza. Tickets to the Fall Wine Festival & Sunset Tour are $38 per person Friday and Sunday night; Saturday night $44 per person, fruit and cheese boxes are $26 each. Ticket sales begin August 25 at 10 a.m. at the Ford Orientation Center or

Capturing an American Icon: Fall Photo Workshop at Mount Vernon
Saturday, October 25
Sunday, November 2
Monday, November 10
2:30 p.m. - 5 p.m.

Join Mount Vernon for an exciting new program, Capturing an American Icon: Fall Photo Workshop at Mount Vernon, offered in partnership with Washington Photo Safari. The photo safari includes many of Mount Vernon’s picturesque outdoor settings, including the gardens, orchard, farm, historic structures, and the Potomac River. Participants will go “behind-the-scenes” to areas not available to the general public. Washington Photo Safari director E. David Luria will give hands-on tips in architectural, travel, and nature photography, as well as instruction on camera use. Participants at any skill level, with any camera, are invited to attend. Participants are responsible for providing their own equipment and for any photo processing. The fee is $89 per person which includes general admission to the estate. Tickets available August 1.

Brewing History: Beer Tasting, Tour & Dinner
Friday, October 24

Mount Vernon hosts a special beer dinner, brewing demonstration, and private Mansion tour for guests at the first president’s estate. Learn more about how beer was brewed and enjoyed in early America. The evening begins with a reception and beer tasting. A special 18th-century beer brewing demonstration in the historic area will focus on the beer that would have been consumed by Washington. Listen to knowledgeable staff while enjoying a four-course menu paired with specialty beers by the Mount Vernon Inn. Tickets are $95 and are available online at Includes tax and gratuity.

Fall Harvest Family Days
Saturday & Sunday, October 25-26
9 a.m. – 5 p.m.

Mount Vernon celebrates the autumn season with Fall Harvest Family Days! The entire family enjoys autumn activities including wagon rides, wheat treading in the 16-sided barn, 18th-century dancing demonstrations, a straw bale maze, farrier (blacksmithing) demonstrations, apple-roasting, corn husk dolls demonstrations and early-American games and music. Potomac River sightseeing cruises are half-price this weekend only. Fall Harvest Family Days is included in admission.