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Deck the Halls: Alexandria hits another ‘favorite Christmassy Towns’ list

Santa Claus waves at the Scottish Christmas Walk Parade in Old Town on Saturday, Dec. 2, 2023 (staff photo by James Cullum)

(Updated 3:20 p.m.) Alexandria has nabbed a top spot on another holiday-focused tour list, this time on holiday gift website Mixbook.

The website’s list “America’s Favorite ‘Christmassy’ Towns 2023” ranked Alexandria at number five — though unlike AARP, Mixbook fails to note that Alexandria is a city, not a town.

“Alexandria, Virginia, voted as America’s fifth most Christmassy town, embodies the spirit of the holiday season with its unique blend of history and festive charm,” Mixbook wrote. “The town’s picturesque streets, lined with historic brick buildings, are transformed into a winter wonderland adorned with twinkling lights and holiday decorations.”

Like the AARP list, the Mixbook list praises the city’s candlelight tours and the Scottish Christmas Walk Parade hosted this past weekend.

According to the website:

Alexandria’s rich colonial history adds to its allure, offering a nostalgic backdrop to modern holiday celebrations. The town hosts a variety of seasonal events, such as traditional candlelight tours, and the iconic Scottish Christmas Walk Parade, showcasing its vibrant community spirit. The bustling holiday markets, local artisan shops, and cozy cafes create an inviting atmosphere, drawing visitors from near and far. Alexandria’s blend of historic ambience, community festivities, and warm, welcoming spirit make it a quintessential destination for experiencing the magic of Christmas.

While the highlight on the list of towns is nice, the distinction between cities, towns and counties is substantial in Virginia.

In Virginia, cities are independent of counties. City residents pay city taxes, elect city officials, and run their own school systems, etc. Towns, like Vienna and Herndon, are not separate from their counties — in those cases, Fairfax County.

Cities can also annex territories from counties, as Alexandria did when it took the West End from Fairfax County and as it should do with Shirlington.

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