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Historic Del Ray Symposium Set for Nov. 10

Del Ray Citizens Association teaming with Alexandria historical organizations for free conference aimed at preserving Del Ray's history and structures.

The Del Ray Citizens Association is teaming with the Office of Historic Alexandria, Historic Alexandria Resources Commission and the Alexandria Historical Society to sponsor a free symposium on Nov. 10 highlighting the unique history and architecture of the city’s Del Ray neighborhood.

Attendees will hear speakers representing several of Alexandria’s historical organizations discuss the history of Del Ray, which has long been recognized for its days as a streetcar hub (take a look at today’s street signs).

Speakers will cover an infamous racetrack once within Del Ray’s confines, mail-order homes and the remarkable rock-and-roll heritage of George Washington High School (now a middle school). Jim Morrison of The Doors and John Phillips and Cass Elliot of the Mamas and the Papas were former students.

The symposium will also examine Del Ray’s Art Deco-style buildings and why some of them along Leslie Avenue might be at risk.

Preservation issues such as easements, tax credits, historic districts and tools for preserving historic structures and landscapes will be discussed.

DRCA President Bill Hendrickson said with so many new residents in the neighborhood and the high turnover rate of the region, he wanted to create an opportunity for residents to learn about the neighborhood’s history, something that they otherwise may not have considered.  

The event will be held from 9:30 a.m. to 12:30 p.m. Nov. 10 at the George Washington Middle School cafeteria. Coffee and refreshments will be served 30 minutes before the conference begins. The event is free and open to the public. No advance registration in necessary.

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