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The Beauty of the Uplands Neighborhood, Reston, VA

By Eve Thompson

Uplands Neighborhood

The Uplands neighborhood has something for everyone!

The Uplands is the quintessential Reston neighborhood — while it is convenient to all major roads, it feels like it is miles away from everything. As one of Reston’s older neighborhoods, and one that borders Lake Fairfax Park, the wooded areas are well established. Uplands has a great layout with just two access points. While there is a convenient secret short cut over to Rt. 7, for the most part the people who travel on Ring Road live in Uplands.

The Uplands neighborhood includes both townhome clusters and single family homes in a wide variety of styles, from ranch styles houses to large contemporary and pretty much everything in between. One of the best features of Uplands is the toddler and young kid-oriented Uplands pool. Okay, adults enjoy playing in the pools fountains too.

There is also a huge recreation area that includes two tennis courts, a full sized basketball court, and a baseball diamond. For those who like walking their dogs in the woods, or just going for a great hike, there is easy access into Lake Fairfax park via Buttermilk Creek trail. And in the winter, Uplands has the best sledding hill around.

Uplands is about a five minute drive to Reston Town Center, and same to the Reston Metro Station. But the neighborhood is so tranquil and beautiful, you may never want to leave.

Remembering Reston’s Founder Robert E. Simon

By Eve Thompson

Bob Simon

Bob Simon making an appearance at one of Lake Anne’s many events. He was always there to support the place he loved.

Last week, the entire Reston community mourned the loss of one of the most exceptional people I have ever known: Reston’s founder Robert E. Simon.

His death came as shock, even though none of us should be shocked that a 101 year old has passed away–after all, 101 is a hell of a run. But somehowe it seemed like Bob would just keep going forever.

I was fortunate to know him as a friend and a neighbor. He lived in Heron House on Lake Anne where my husband and I live, and I frequently drove him to Reston Association meetings.

As I’ve read the tributes in the press and on social media, it’s clear that what Bob created in Reston was special. The unique blending of proximity to our neighbors combined with our natural spaces, the yin and yang of density and openness creates a wonderful place to live; but even more than that is the foundational principals upon which we were built–the inclusiveness from the beginning, the need for connectedness are rare goals to have been cited as a measure of success.

I hope as we go forward that we are able to hold onto what makes us special. As for now, I’ll miss seeing Bob around the Plaza, but am so thankful for this place that he created.

Five Fun Fall Festivals Near Reston, VA

By Eve Thompson

Summer may be winding down (ok, ok. it’s officially over). But that doesn’t mean the fun is going to wind down at all. In fact, fall in Reston is the perfect time of year. You can find some great outdoor festival every weekend… and most are free. Here are five fun fall festivals in and near Reston that will keep you and your family happily entertained. Enjoy!

Cox Farms Fall Festival: September 26 – November 3, 2015, Centreville, VA. 
Giant slides, a fabulous hay ride, and the chance to do some farm chores are just a few of the things that make children BEG to go to the Cox Farms Fall Festival every year (yes, even the farm chores). There are also fresh apples, cider, live animals, pumpkins and food, and a great farmer’s market. It’s mega fun for the whole family. Opening weekend is September 26, and it runs through November 3. Do not miss it!

Fairfax Fall Festival: October 10, 2015, Fairfax, VA.
For 38 years, Northern Virginians have enjoyed this family friendly street festival in the heart of the City of Fairfax, VA. More than 400 juried crafters and food vendors will be selling their wares. Children’s activities include Touch a Truck, All American Lumberjack Show, and amusement rides. And there is musical entertainment for all ages! The best part? This festival is FREE.

Clifton Day Festival: October 11, 2015, Clifton.
One day a year, the quaint town of Clifton celebrates its history in style. With 150 antique dealers, artists, bakers and other street vendors lining the town’s streets, what more could you want? How about a train ride? Clifton Day is the only day of the year when the Virginia Railway Express (VRE) stops in town. Festival goers can take the train, which will provide roundtrip train service to Clifton from all stops between Manassas and Rolling Road. The train ride to Clifton is free and the return trip costs $5 per person (children under age two ride free). And if that isn’t enticement enough, there will be live bands, pony rides, craft demonstrations, children’s activities, a Civil War reenactment and a wide selection of food and beverages.

Oktoberfest Reston: October 10 and 11, 2015, Reston.
Oktoberfest Reston is Northern Virginia’s largest outdoor fall festival—and it’s right in our back yard at Reston Town Center! Come enjoy seasonal beer and wine, German fare from 17 area restaurants, a family carnival, live entertainment, a chili cook off and the Great Pumpkin 5K race. Live music will include traditional German tunes as well as favorites from a variety of local musicians.

Tysons Fall Harvest Festival: October 17, 18, 24, 25, 2015, Tysons Corner.
Bring the kids for the 2nd annual Tysons Fall Harvest Festival! Enjoy the Fall Harvest as you stroll through the arts and crafts booths and taste some of the fun flavors of Fall. It is all here for the reaping… bring your family and friends and carve out some special memories. Special activities include lots of fun FREE activities for the whole family: The largest hay pyramid in DC, Petting Zoo, Bouncy Houses, Pumpkin Bowling, Kids Candy Walk, Craft Corner, and the hay maze. And for mom and dad, there will be tons of craft beers and Virginia wines to sample! All this is happening at the Lerner Town Square at the Galleria Tysons II.

Heather Knoll Cluster, North Reston

By Eve Thompson

Heather Knoll Cluster in Reston, VA. Photo courtesy of Heather Knoll Cluster.

Heather Knoll Cluster in Reston, VA.
Photo courtesy of Heather Knoll Cluster.

The North Point area of Reston was the last place fully developed in Reston, and the homes are modern, clean, and beautiful. Heather Knoll Cluster is no exception. Built in the early 1990’s, Heather Knoll Cluster is a small community of 52 townhouses distributed among 13 buildings. These homes are perfect for young families as they’re situated on a charming cul de sac—providing children with a safe place to play.

Designed by Berry & Co., each home has a traditional brick front with fine detailing, classic cedar siding and elegant trim. They also each have a one-car garage—a bonus for Reston townhomes—and privacy fences separating the yards. They are all two levels with a basement, three bedrooms, and two and half bath. And they have fireplaces! The homes come in three different styles, with variations in room sizes and overall square footage.

Healther Knoll Cluster is located on Woodbrook Court off of Woodbrook Lane and Wiehle Avenue—with close proximity to the Fairfax County Parkway and Route 7. The surrounding area has wonderful walking paths and plenty of trees and nature.

This is the perfect neighborhood for anyone who wants something slightly off the beaten path, but still wants to have all the amenities of Reston easily accessible.

Is Reston Townhome Living for You?

By Eve Thompson

Golf Course Island ClusterThere is every type of dwelling available in Reston—from single family home to condos, from large to small… and everything in between. Despite the fact I live in a condo, I always associate Reston with townhomes. Perhaps that is because we have such diverse townhome communities—we have close to a 140 separate townhouse clusters. That’s a lot.

Many people who move to Reston have never considered living in a townhome. They perceive them as dark and small with little privacy from neighbors. Then they visit some of the townhome communities and change their minds. Our townhome clusters are wildly varied from the comfortable and modest to over-the-top luxurious. Many are on our lakes or golf course. All have beautiful, well-kept common areas.

cedar cove cluster

Cedar Cove cluster in South Reston has garages and access to Lake Audubon!

So is a Reston townhome right for you? Possibly yes. Reston townhomes offer a wide range of housing options for almost every price point. You’ll often find neighborhoods that are a combination of young families, singles, or couples who have downsized. It’s a wonderful, eclectic mix. And for busy professionals, you have the bonus of a lovely neighborhood that you don’t have to care for—your cluster will maintain the common property!

If you’ve never considered townhome living because you’re worried about the size, the light or living in such close proximity, maybe you should reconsider, there is a lot of upside to this housing style. And no place does it as well as Reston.

Waterview Cluster, North Reston

By Eve Thompson

Waterview Cluster in Reston, VA

Waterview Cluster is Reston’s most iconic neighborhood.

Whenever you see an article about Reston, the planned community or Reston appears in a history book, you will likely also see a picture of Waterview Cluster. It is perhaps the most iconic Reston neighborhood.

Built in 1965, many of the 75 two and three story townhouses on Lake Anne have beautiful water views with the remaining situated on lushly landscaped wooded lots. Award-winning architect Chloethiel Woodard Smith designed Waterview Cluster to feel like a French fishing village, and the exterior bricks painted in soft pastels and the charming balconies really do make it feel European.

The townhouses in this beautiful community have a charming mid-century modern meets cottage vibe. They are light and airy, with very inviting interior spaces. They range in size from 1,500 to 2,800 square feet. Residents affectionately call the homes “tall skinnies” or “short fats.” The mix of size and styles make for a unique and charming neighborhood. Waterview Cluster residents are unwavering in their affection for their neighborhood—they share a collective recognition that they live some place unique.

Like most of Reston, Waterview Cluster is very walk-able, with paved walkways leading to Lake Anne Village Center and Reston Town Center.

Tweets from Eve:

After years of trying to be all things to all people I finally said ENOUGH! Reston, VA is what I know and love and this is where I add real value to my clients! So if you're looking to buy or sell in Reston, VA please give me a call.

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