The 2016 Reston Summer Bucket List

Reston really shines in the summertime. This season of fun always slips by too quickly — don’t miss it! Here’s a list of some of the best things to do during summertime in Reston and nearby parts of Northern Virginia.

How many of these things can you check off this year? You’ll want to bookmark this page and refer to it all summer long.


The Lake Anne Jazz and Blues Festival


☐ June 2-5, 2016: Enjoy the carnival and concerts at the Herndon Festival.

☐ June 11-12, 2016: Fill the Plaza with color at the Lake Anne Chalk Festival.

☐ June 12, 2016: Salute the sun at the Love Your Body Yoga Festival.

☐ June 17-18, 2016: Eat, drink, and be merry at Taste of Reston.

☐ July 4, 2016: Watch the fireworks over Lake Fairfax Park.

☐ July 9, 2016: Enjoy the tropical sounds of Lake Anne’s Ukulele Festival.

☐ September 3, 2016: Dance on the waterfront at the Lake Anne Jazz & Blues Festival.


Boat rental at Lake Anne


☐ Get swept along Rattlesnake River at the Water Mine Family Swimmin’ Hole.

☐ Tour a Reston lake by boat (you can rent one at Lake Anne).

☐ Tour a Reston lake by paddle board (you can take a lesson with Surf Reston).

☐ Go down the big tunnel slide at Glade pool.

☐ Cool off in the fountain at Lake Anne Plaza.

☐ Celebrate with friends at a pontoon party or dock party.

☐ Catch the one that got away while fishing at a lake or stream.

☐ See how many RA pools you can visit in a summer.

☐ Search for turtles and other wildlife at Lake Newport.

☐ Watch a movie while swimming at a Family Dive-In Movie.

☐ Eat free poolside burgers at an RA Community Cookout.

☐ Run through a splash pad at Reston Town Center, Dogwood Pool, or Lake Anne Park.

☐ Let your dog splash in kiddie pools at Reston Town Center on Wednesday evening Dog Days of Summer.


Free Sunday workout at Reston Town Center


☐ Calm your mind with free outdoor yoga classes at Lake AnneReston Station, or the Great Falls Green.

☐ Bike the W&OD Trail to Herndon or Vienna or beyond.

☐ Play a round of tennis on one of the 52 RA courts.

☐ Learn from experts with free Sunday workouts at Reston Town Center.

☐ Hike along the Potomac from Riverbend Park to Great Falls Park.

☐ Take your bike off-road on the mountain biking trails at Lake Fairfax Park.

☐ Explore a Reston trail that is new to you.

☐ Learn a new trick at Lake Fairfax Skatepark.

☐ Walk through the woods from Walker Nature Center to Lake Audubon.

☐ Race in a 5Ktriathlon, or kids triathlon (or watch and cheer for the racers)

☐ Watch and cheer for a kids’ swim meet, baseball game, or soccer game.

☐ Roast marshmallows and sleep in a tent at Lake Fairfax campgrounds.


Thursday night Take a Break Concert


☐ Thursdays: Eat a lakeside dinner at a Take a Break Concert at Lake Anne.

☐ Fridays: Celebrate Reston’s newest plaza at Summer Stage at Reston Station.

☐ Fridays: Join the party at Herndon’s Friday Night Live.

☐ Saturdays: Enjoy patio drinks at Clyde’s or Neyla during a Reston Concert on the Town.

☐ Sundays: Relax with classical music at Reston Town Center with Sundays in the Park.

☐ Sundays: Bring a picnic for a Concert on the Green at Great Falls Village.

☐ Watch a free movie under the stars at the Lake Anne Summer Film Festival or Movies Under Our Stars at Reston Station.

☐ Enjoy the ultimate in outdoor performance venues at Wolf Trap.

☐ Take the kids to Reston Town Center on Monday mornings to see Mr. Knick Knack.

☐ Take the kids to Lake Anne on Tuesday mornings for children’s entertainment.


Red’s Table waterfront restaurant at Lake Thoreau


☐ Eat lakeside at Kalypso’s, Cafe Monmartre, Singh ThaiCafe Sano, or Red’s Table.

☐ Sip Reston’s hometown beers at the Lake Anne Brew House.

☐ Sip a glass of wine with dinner on the patio of Vinafera.

☐ Enjoy Reston Town Center’s many restaurant patios, including Neyla, Clyde’s, Barcelona, Bar Taco, and Vapiano.

☐ Treat yourself to fine dining at L’Auberge Chez François in Great Falls.

☐ Drive out to the countryside for a winery picnic.

☐ Reserve a picnic pavilion at one of the RA parks.

☐ Reserve a picnic pavilion at Lake Fairfax for a cookout with a view.

☐ Visit the Reston Farmers Market or Smart Markets at Reston Station and try a food you’ve never tasted.

☐ Head to Tysons mall for outdoor dining and recreation on the Tysons Plaza.

☐ Bring a picnic or carryout and eat on the grass by the “Bird in the Hand” stick sculpture.

What did we miss? What are your favorite things to do in this area during the summertime? Please let us know in the comments. 

Photo credit for all photos: Charlotte Geary. All rights reserved.

Related stories:

The Ultimate Guide to Outdoor Things to Do in the Reston Area

Memorial Day 2016 Events in Reston, Northern Virginia, and DC

A Sneak Peek Inside the Gorgeous and Eagerly Awaited Lake Anne Brew House

A Perfectly Relaxed Summer Night at a Great Falls Concert on the Green

We Tried It: Paddle Polo, Reston’s Newest Sport

Photo Gallery: Fourth of July Holiday Weekend at Lake Anne

Photo Gallery: Reston in the Summer of 2015

Reston Town Center’s Colorful ChalkFest