Skip to main content

Join George Washington’s Mount Vernon for a Historic Summer

Independence Fireworks, Guest Artist on Site, New Tours and Programs 

MOUNT VERNON, VA – George Washington’s Mount Vernon honors the nation’s first president with patriotic events and specialty tours throughout the summer.

Special Events:

Spring Garden Party

Saturday, June 15, 6:30 p.m. – 8:30 p.m.

Enjoy the longer days and Mount Vernon’s blooming gardens during this evening reception. Take a leisurely stroll through the historic area while enjoying a menu of hors d’oeuvres curated by Michelin-starred chef and owner of Masseria in Washington DC Nicholas Stefanelli. The hors d'oeuvres will be paired with wines made by AldenAlli. Stefanelli and Dan Kosta, co-founder of AldenAlli, will be on site and mingling with guests throughout the evening. Listen to readings from Cato, George Washington’s favorite play, read by costumed characters, followed by drinks and colonial music. Tickets: $200 per person. More details:

Independence Fireworks

Friday-Saturday, June 28-29, 6 p.m. – 9:30 p.m.

Start your Independence Day celebration with a bang! Enjoy an evening of family fun and fireworks choreographed to patriotic music and celebrate our nation's founding. Greet General and Mrs. Washington near the Mansion and watch colonial artisans make ice cream with 18th-century methods. Tickets: $20-$36. More details:

An American Celebration

Thursday, July 4, 8:00 a.m. – 5:00 p.m.

Salute the first commander in chief during Mount Vernon's annual Independence Day event! Celebrate with daytime fireworks, military re-enactments, and a wreathlaying ceremony. Enjoy free birthday cake (while supplies last) and visit with General and Mrs. Washington. Listen to a performance by the National Concert Band during its "Red, White and Blue" concert and observe a moving naturalization ceremony for 100 new citizens. Included with general admission. More details:

Plein Air at Mount Vernon

Friday-Sunday, July 12-14, 12:00 p.m. – 4:00 p.m.

Mount Vernon hosts one of the country’s top-selling artists, Simon Bull, to paint in Mount Vernon’s gardens throughout the weekend. Visitors can watch Bull at work painting flowers, trees, and scenes from the gardens on a mural-sized canvas using a brush and pouring paint on the canvas. As he works, Bull discusses his process and painting techniques and answer questions. Included with general admission. More details:

Simon Bull Evening Reception

Sunday, July 14, 7:00 p.m. – 9:00 p.m.

At the conclusion of Simon Bull’s residency, Mount Vernon hosts a reception in the Education Center. Visitors can enjoy wine while viewing the work created by the artist throughout the weekend. Tickets: $40. More details:

Purple Heart Commemoration

Saturday, August 10, 10:30 a.m.

Join Mount Vernon and members of the Military Order of the Purple Heart for the estate’s official National Purple Heart Day Ceremony. Enjoy a musical prelude before the ceremony commences. The ceremony includes the presentation of the colors, a musical performance by the Old Guard Fife and Drum Corps, and keynote remarks given by Lieutenant Colonel Matthew Kutilek, United States Marine Special Operations Officer. More details:

New Tours and Programs:

Preservation Tour

This 75-minute tour gives participants extraordinary access to the processes and practices of our preservation staff, including visiting the basement, second floor of the servants hall, and recently completed rooms. Available Thursday-Friday, April – November, 1 p.m. Tickets: $30 in addition to admission. More details:

Mount Vernon in AR

Celebrate Washington’s love of emerging technologies and enjoy lesser-known stories of the first president’s estate revealed by immersive 3D imagery layered over a view of the real landscape. Holograms of George and Martha Washington, 360-degree recreations of former buildings and gardens, and images of artifacts placed in their original context, are among the many tools used in the one-of-a-kind storytelling. Available daily, weather dependent. Tickets: $12.50 in addition to admission. More details:

Special Tours with Additional Fee:

  • Potomac River sightseeing cruises offer a refreshing opportunity to explore Mount Vernon from a different view with a 45-minute narrated excursion aboard the Spirit of Mount Vernon or Miss Christin. Tickets for sightseeing cruises are $11 for adults and $7 for children (6-11) in addition to admission. Children ages 5 and under are free. More details:

  • The Enslaved People of Mount Vernon Tour explores the lives and contributions of the enslaved community who built and operated Mount Vernon. In 1799, more than 300 slaves lived and worked on the five farms that made up Washington’s plantation. Listen to their stories and learn more about their daily life. Visit the slave quarters and view reproduction clothing, tools, furniture, cookware, ceramics, toys, and personal accessories that represent their experiences. Daily from April – October at 10 a.m. and 2 p.m. Tickets: $10 in addition to admission. More details:

  • Mount Vernon’s popular National Treasure Tour returns! This tour is dedicated to the behind-the-scenes filming of the blockbuster movie “National Treasure 2: Book of

    Secrets” at Mount Vernon, combining Hollywood and history and giving visitors stories about the filming and how the locations were used during George Washington’s time.  Offered daily April – December. Times vary. Tickets: $10 in addition to admission. More details:

  • The Gardens & Groves Tour examines Washington’s brilliant design for the grounds at Mount Vernon. Visit the gardens he envisioned, see some of the original trees that are still standing, and learn how he merged areas for work and leisure to create a master plan for his beloved home. Offered daily April – October at 11 a.m. Tickets: $10 in addition to admission. More details:

  • Through My Eyes Character Tour uses actors portraying characters such as Washington's granddaughter, personal secretary, or farm manager will guide you across the estate as they go about their daily activities, making several stops along the way. Offered on Saturdays and Sunday, March – December at 1:30 p.m. Tickets: $10 in addition to admission. More details:

  • Surviving the 18th Century

    On this interactive family tour, visit the wash house, necessary, and other outbuildings and discover the personal hygiene of people in the 18th-century. Available daily, March – October, 1 p.m. Tickets: $10 in addition to admission. More details: org/survivaltour.

  • Mount Vernon’s In-Depth Tour offers guests a 90-minute guided tour of the estate that explores the Mansion enslaved quarters, grounds, and outbuildings. Discover more than 250 years of history at Mount Vernon. The tour begins in the Mansion, which serves as an autobiography of George Washington—the architecture, function, and furnishings of each room reflected his status in society. The experience concludes with a special wreath-laying ceremony at George Washington's Tomb, and a visit to the Slave Cemetery. March – December. Times vary. More details:

Other Seasonal Activities – Included in Admission:

  • George Washington’s Distillery & Gristmill Demonstrations by costumed distillers take visitors through the historic process of whiskey-making in this reconstruction of Washington’s 18th-century distillery. George Washington’s Distillery is adjacent to his reconstructed Gristmill, a water-powered mill where Colonial millers grind corn into meal and wheat into flour just as it was done more than 200 years ago. George Washington’s Distillery & Gristmill are located three miles from Mount Vernon. More details:

  • At the George Washington: Pioneer Farmer site, visitors can tour the re-created 16-sided barn George Washington designed.  This four-acre site also features rare-breed farm animals (oxen, mules, roosters, sheep, and chickens) similar to the varieties Washington had at his farms. The cultivated area includes eight fields, and illustrates Washington’s advanced farming practices and crop rotation scheme. More details:

  • During Mount Vernon’s Tribute at the Tomb, visitors recite Washington’s “Prayer for his Country” and the Pledge of Allegiance as part of this daily program offered at the tomb of George and Martha Washington at 10 a.m. and 3 p.m., April – October. More details:



News Filming & Photography

Interested in filming or photographing at Mount Vernon? Check out our guide for professional photographers.

Learn more

News Backgrounders card

Access bulleted facts and background information about the Mount Vernon Ladies’ Association, George Washington, the Estate, and more.

Learn more