Enter Now through March 17

There is still time for students in grades K-8 to enter the poetry contest about how local parks have made Fairfax County a greener, cleaner, healthier place to live, work and play.

All participants will receive a certificate and opportunity to compete for prizes and a chance to read their poems in the 2021 Virtual Poetry Showcase in April.

“Like many of you, the Fairfax County Park Foundation Board of Directors, staff, and volunteers have adjusted to working at home and Zoom meetings. We continue to reach out to our generous donors who have shown their support not only through their donations but also through volunteering for environmental and educational programs, sharing beautiful photographs of their favorite parks, visits to the parks, and participation in many programs. The Park Foundation is grateful for our loyal donors and supporters and we look forward to being able to meet in person and personally greet you. Until then, please stay safe and continue to enjoy your wonderful, award-winning parks!“
Draft Dog Park Study
The Fairfax County Park Authority will hold a virtual public meeting on Tuesday, March 23, 2021, at 7 p.m. to present the study findings and gather public comment on the Dog Park Study Draft Report

Feedback from 4,600 residents was used in the draft report. Click here for more information about how to provide your comments. They are needed by April 23rd.
A Park Love Letter
Dear beloved Difficult Run Stream Valley Park in Oakton,

Thanks for all the fabulous, covid-safe recreational opportunities you offer during the pandemic such as walking, running, biking, birding, wildlife viewing, and nature photography. Thanks too for the physical and mental health benefits you provide.

Let's get to the point, we're worried about you. Why are you letting down your guard against the aggressively growing, non-native invasive plants that continue to survive and thrive during the pandemic? Japanese barberry and multiflora rose with their nasty barbs/thorns and difficult-to-remove roots. Pachysandra that escapes landscaping, carpets the ground, and chokes out native plants. Vines such as English ivy, wintercreeper, and oriental bittersweet that climb, girdle, strangle, and kill your beautiful native trees.

Luckily we -hundreds of devoted Invasive Management Area (IMA) volunteers of all ages, abilities, and socio-economic & cultural backgrounds- have been protecting you during these ‘unprecedented’ times. We are Girl Scouts, Scouts BSA, students, and residents of Fairfax County and beyond. We often work in extreme heat or cold and other uncomfortable weather conditions. Even when we wear thick protective gloves with gauntlets and multiple layers of clothes, sometimes invasive plants' nasty thorns and barbs prick us, and yet we return week after week bearing shovels, loppers, and weed wrenches to wrestle stubborn plants out of your soil. Despite the requirement to wear a mask and physically distance 6 feet, we love protecting you and the wildlife you host by spending hours pulling non-native invasive plants from you.

They say ‘everything looks different during covid’. Our love for you looks like a group of park-loving volunteers pulling invasive plants and expecting nothing in return except to enjoy your natural beauty and the native wildlife that calls you home.

an IMA site leader and volunteers at Difficult Run Stream Valley Park in Oakton
Supervisor Palchik and members of the Oakton High School Environmental Club
Carolyn Hindle & Sydney Rico
officers of the Oakton High School Environmental Club
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"I was pleased to join an amazing group of volunteers on Sunday at the Difficult Run Stream Valley Park in Oakton for the Invasive Management Area program. Invasive plants degrade our natural ecosystem and the Fairfax County Park Authority volunteer program battles those invasive species, by removing and replacing them with native species to protect our local parks. It was heartening to see that so many community members spent their Sunday volunteering to protect our parks.
We pulled 19 bags worth of the invasive plant pachysandra. This plant escapes yards, carpets park land, smothers native plants, and provides no benefit to local wildlife. The Girl Scouts, Scouts BSA, Oakton High School Environmental Club and residents of Oakton, Vienna, Fairfax, Herndon and Great Falls worked together on this project."
Before May 1, 2021, the Fairfax County Department of Transportation is asking for your help in providing information to be used in developing a safe, convenient, and fun street and trail network for everyone.

Your survey responses and map notations will be considered by county staff as the ActiveFAIRFAX Transportation Plan is developed. Connecting 390 miles of trails with 429 parks and other county facilities is not an easy task. The interactive maps allow you to "like" proposed trails and comment on critical missing links.

In addition to supporting the survey and mapping projects, the Park Foundation has a trail building and care fund should businesses and individuals care to make a donation.
Click here to complete an Active Transportation survey.

Click here to report where you face barriers where you want to walk or ride.

Click here to see the planned trail and bikeway networks and disclose any missing links.
Japanese Tea
March 27 – Spring Fling Tour through the Woods at Frying Pan Farm Park

Take a spring trek on Frying Pan Farm Park’s nature trail to experience the changes of the season. Visit special stations throughout the trail to build a fairy house, keep a tally of all the birds seen at the park, search for critters, and enjoy Japanese teas at the historic Frying Pan Meeting House. 1pm – 3pm; admission is free.

March 28 – Wabi-Sabi: Embracing Imperfection at Green Spring Gardens

Discover your sense of wabi-sabi, the Japanese art of finding beauty in the naturally imperfect world. Explore this philosophy of “making do” that resonates in austere times, and its origins in the world of tea. Japanese tea sample and traditional sweets included with optional tea box. Program runs from 2pm – 3pm; $12 - $24. Register online.

Moments of Beauty
Saving Trees – Before & After English Invasive Management
Upcoming Events