Normally for our weekly “To Do” list we pick a few of the upcoming weekend’s most promising events and write a couple sentences about each.
This week, there’s so much going on that it was impossible to narrow it down. So rather than a novel-sized write-up, here’s a list of everything on our radar. See our events calendar for more details on each event.
- Canceled due to weather Rock at the Row Summer Concert Series – Pentagon Row Plaza
- Live Music: White Ford Bronco and Practically Einstein – Ri-Ra Irish Pub
- Clarendon Ballroom Blitz w/ Dr. Fu and Toxic Mouse
- National Donut Day
- Yorktown High School Art Show
- “I Love the 90s” Rosslyn Outdoor Film Festival – Rosslyn Gateway Park
- U.S. Air Force Band Summer Concert Series (Opening Concert) – Air Force Memorial
- Live Comedy: Natasha Leggero – Arlington Drafthouse
- Courthouse Farmers Market
- Aurora Hills Senior Center Trash ‘n’ Treasure Sale
- Focus Group: Re-Envisioning the Future of the Library – Fairlington Community Center
- Wylie Wagg Grand Opening
- Red Mango Grand Opening
- Live Theater: Every Young Woman’s Desire (“Pay-What-You-Can” showing) – Clark Street Playhouse
- Summer Concert: Soho Down (Country Rock/Pop) – Potomac Overlook Regional Park
- Vivaldi’s Extraordinary Four Seasons – Rosslyn Spectrum Theatre
- Columbia Pike Farmers Market
- Green Living Home and Garden Tour
- Film: “The Princess and the Frog” (2009) – Shirlington Branch Library
- Live Theater: R. Buckminster Fuller: The History (and Mystery) of the Universe – Arena Stage
- A German Requiem – Unitarian Universalist Church of Arlington
Carlin Springs Road is still closed between North Glebe Road and Vermont Street after a utility pole collapsed, sparked a fire and knocked out power to nearly 2,000 homes and businesses.
Crews from Dominion, Verizon and Comcast are still working to fix the mess. No word yet on whether the road will reopened by the evening rush hour.
Running your own business is hard work. Handling lunchtime crowds in hot and humid weather is exhausting. And nowadays, if you run a popular mobile food business, you need to keep your loyal fans apprised of your every move lest an online revolt breaks out.
District Taco is one of the more prolific food truck vendors on Twitter. They’re total social media pros — answering questions and retweeting customers’ feedback.
But even Twitter pros will sometimes send an errant tweet. Today, @districttaco was trying to answer a question about how someone got a t-shirt. Unfortunately, they clicked the wrong retweet button.
An apology quickly followed.
It’s not every day you hear someone complementing the way things are done at the Department of Motor Vehicles. It’s also fairly rare these days to hear a progressive Huffington Post blogger saying nice things about the Commonwealth of Virginia, land of the Confederate History Month and the anti-anti-discrimination directive.
But blogger Tamar Abrams was so delighted with her teen daughter’s experience with Virginia’s unique “juvenile licensing ceremony” that she felt compelled to tell the world.
There is one shining beacon of brilliance that I witnessed yesterday in the Arlington County Courthouse and which makes me want, for a moment, to brag about the state in which I’ve resided for 18 years.
Instead of just being handed a shiny new driver’s license at the DMV counter, new drivers under the age of 18 are summoned to appear in family court with a parent. There they watch a driving safety video (narrated by Arlington-born newswoman Katie Couric), hear a talk about teen driving laws, and are finally handed their license by a stern-looking judge.
Abrams wrote that the ceremony left a lasting impression.
It feels good to be proud of my home state, even for a moment. I can’t find any statistics proving that the juvenile licensing ceremony has reduced teen accidents in Virginia, but I know for one teen and her mom it reminded us of the gravity of earning a right to drive.
After a five year hiatus, Arlington is bringing back red light cameras at four busy county intersections.
Arlington’s previous generation of red light cameras went dark in 2005 after the Virginia General Assembly banned them statewide. The cameras were reauthorized in 2007 but stayed dormant in Arlington.
Now, the county is installing a new generation of cameras with the vaguely Bono-inspired name of ‘PhotoRED.’
The cameras will monitor eastbound Lee Highway at North Lynn Street, westbound Lee Highway at Washington Boulevard, northbound North Glebe Road at Fairfax Drive, and southbound Ft. Myer Drive at westbound Lee Highway.
The PhotoRED cameras are expected to come online on Monday, June 14. They will issue warnings for the first 30 days, police said. After that, drivers who run red lights or violate Virginia’s right turn on red law will receive this notice of violation and a $50 civil fine (like a parking ticket, it will not go on the driver’s record).
The system will cost the police department $14,900 per month, although the county will keep a portion of the fines collected. (Updated at 3:55 p.m.)
The county says that red light photo enforcement can reduce crashes at monitored intersections by roughly 40 percent.
Diagram courtesy of Arlington County Police Department.
The unemployment rate is down in most metro areas across the country — and Arlington is no exception.
Newly-released data for April shows that Arlington’s jobless rate dropped to 4.0 percent from 4.8 percent in March.
Arlington is holding on to the title of lowest unemployment in the region and the state. Alexandria city had the next-lowest rate, at 4.5 percent. The rate is 6.7 percent for Virginia as a whole, and 9.5 percent for the entire U.S.
According to the Virginia Employment Commission, 5,607 Arlington residents were listed as unemployed in April, out of a total workforce of 139,458.
Twenty professionals, including Arlington Chamber of Commerce president Richard V. Doud, Jr., signed a memo urging county board chairman Jay Fisette to embrace the toll lanes project.
“The primary obstacle to advancing this innovative, multi-modal improvement is the Arlington County Board’s lawsuit that precludes the project from securing any private or public sector funding,” the letter stated.
Alexandria and Prince William County business leaders also signed the letter, despite opposition to the project from elected leaders in those jurisdictions.
When Arlington filed the suit in August 2009, officials said the lanes would create more traffic, would lead to more pollution and would have an adverse affect on Arlington residents who live along I-395. They said Virginia transportation officials were allowed move forward with the project without conducting the necessary environmental studies.
Arlington officials also said the lanes would benefit mostly affluent, white residents from Stafford and Spotsylvania counties. Wednesday’s letter called those allegations absurd.
“Charges that the Obama administration and Governor Tim Kaine’s Secretary of Transportation acted with the ‘implicit intent’ to harm minority and vulnerable populations and benefit predominantly Caucasian Virginians are not credible and frankly an embarrassment to this region,” the letter stated.