It’s official: the long-awaited Trader Joe’s store in Clarendon will open at 8:00 a.m. on Friday morning. The company will celebrate the opening with a “ceremonial lei cutting” featuring Trader Joe’s officials and “local dignitaries.”
Trader Joe’s a press release about the opening tonight.
Trader Joe’s, a unique, neighborhood grocery store with foods and beverages from the exotic to the basic, will celebrate the grand opening a new store located in Clarendon on Friday, November 18 at 8AM. To commensurate the official opening Trader Joe’s Captain (store manager) Perry Zettersten, Regional Vice President Scott Lane, local dignitaries and the crew will gather at 8:00AM for a ceremonial lei cutting to welcome new customers– Trader Joe’s style. The celebration will continue throughout the day with live music, food demonstrations, balloon artist and face painters.
The store is located at 1109 North Highland Street and is approximately 12,300 square feet. The grocery store will be open from 8:00 am until 9:00 pm, daily. Inside will feature a festive décor mixing traditional Trader Joe’s cedar covered walls, Hawaiian inspired elements throughout the store combined with a local flare including art that celebrates the neighborhood. Throughout the grocery store there are several amazing hand painted murals that pay homage to the old Clarendon Trolley, hot air balloons used during the Civil War, the Clarendon Metro and more.
Trader Joe’s is pleased to announce the appointment of Perry Zettersten, as Captain (Store Manager). Perry comes to the new store from the Trader Joe’s in Washington D.C. and has been with the company approximately 15 years.
Trader Joe’s was originally named in recognition of its distinct grocery buying process, because they search the world for great values and distinctive products. Crew members (store employees) consider themselves “traders on the culinary seas.” Crewmembers sport brightly colored Hawaiian-themed shirts, adding to the light-hearted air of the store.
AFAC expects to distribute some 1,800 frozen turkeys between today and Saturday, when the distribution ends. The organization is also distributing stuffing and mashed potatoes for Thanksgiving, in addition to its normal weekly food distribution (eggs, milk, pasta, canned goods, etc.).
Rep. Jim Moran joined volunteers at AFAC’s Shirlington distribution site this afternoon. The 66-year-old congressman helped to distribute food to AFAC clients, in an effort to draw more attention to the group’s mission.
“I’m hoping to bring a little extra visibility to what AFAC does so that more people will support it financially and through volunteerism,” Moran told ARLnow.com. “This is the best, most extensive feeding program for Arlington residents… who don’t have the material resources to adequately feed their family. [AFAC] uses the least public money, has the most volunteers and is run the most efficiently.”
AFAC is handing out Thanksgiving dinners at all 12 of the group’s distribution sites in Arlington. Executive Director Charles Meng says this week is typically the busiest time of the year for the organization. Since AFAC recently set an all-time high for the number of families it served in a week, Meng expects it may set another record this week.
“Our demand is still increasing and the growth has not yet stopped,” Meng said. “So something’s happening in the community that’s still driving people to us.”
Meng says he believes “underemployment” is a problem for a significant number of AFAC clients — many who were formerly unemployed have found jobs, but the jobs they’ve found aren’t paying enough (often minimum wage) to allow them to buy all the food they need for their families.
“The bottom line is that people don’t really want to come here,” Meng said. “Yes, we’re giving out food — it’s free – but you really don’t want to come here. You’d prefer to go to a local grocery store, get your own food, select what you want.”
New AFAC clients must first be referred to the organization by Arlington’s Department of Human Services, Arlington Public Schools, churches or some other social service agency.
A three-to-four vehicle accident involving Metrobus occurred at the intersection of Army Navy Drive and S. Hayes Street, in Pentagon City, just after 3:00 this afternoon.
Two injuries were reported, but at least initially there were no injuries reported on the bus.
The accident snarled traffic at the busy intersection, adjacent to Pentagon City mall. Police and firefighters are currently on the scene.
The proposal would raise the initial drop charge from $2.75 to $3.00 and would raise the charge for additional passengers from $1.00 to $1.50. Arlington County staff is recommending the Board approve the increase in order to offset an estimated 5 percent rise in expenses for taxi drivers since the last fare hike in 2008. (The per-mile rate was increased from $1.80 to $2.00 in July 2008)
Although taxi drivers in Arlington drive branded taxi cabs — Red Top, Blue Top, Envirocab, etc. — they are actually independent business owners who merely pay the cab companies fees for use of the name and other services. Therefore it’s the drivers, not the companies, that are affected when gas prices or insurance rates increase. Arlington County estimates that cab drivers here currently make between $40,000 and $60,000 per year, after expenses.
To provide a benefit to local taxi riders who will be affected by the fare hike, the Board will consider a new rule requiring credit card machines in all Arlington-based taxicabs. Also, to lessen the impact of the fare hike on families, county staff is recommending the Board exempt riders younger than 12 from the additional passenger charge. Currently, the charge is only waived for children younger than 6 years old.
The fare hike will not only affect riders, but will affect the county’s bottom line as well. Staff estimates that the rate increase will cost Arlington’s STAR para-transit program — which uses taxis to transport disabled citizens — more than $12,000 per year.
If approved, the rate hike would go into effect on Jan. 1, 2012. The credit card requirement would take effect on Dec. 1, 2012.
Apparently the anti-drinking video made by Yorktown High School students last month didn’t quite get the point across to everybody.
A letter sent to parents and students last week reveals that a number of students were caught under the influence of alcohol at the Yorktown/Washington-Lee football game on Friday, Nov. 4.
Dear Parents and Students:
We have had a large number of school activities this past fall season and want to begin by mentioning what has struck us most: the tremendous good will, good spirit and cooperation of our students who participated in and attended these events. We appreciate that, admire it, and thank you for it.
At the same time, when there is a problem, we want to address it. Several students in attendance at the football game this past Friday arrived under the influence of alcohol. Even if this were the case with only one student, it is unacceptable to all of us who work as supervisors at school activities. Knowing you are concerned about your own student’s health and those of all fellow students, I am sure that this is unacceptable to you, as well.
At school and school events, we will continue to stress the importance of healthy decision-making for all our students. We will continue to contact you if there are any incidents involving your child’s well-being. While we believe all high schools across the country have an important role in educating students about the dangers of alcohol, we also know that parents are crucial in working with us to ensure that students are safe and alcohol/drug free.
Parents, please make certain your children understand your clear expectations regarding the underage, illegal use of alcohol and other substances. Know who your student is associating with and where they are going before and after a school event. If your house will be unattended on an evening, make sure your child knows who can and cannot be in your home. Optimally, you may want to have someone else keep an eye on it. Do not hesitate to pick up the phone and call the parent of another student, if you have a question or need to express a concern. The bottom line is the same for all of us: we want to ensure the safety and health of every single Arlington Public School student.
Thanks to each of you — students and parents — for communicating openly and honestly about this issue. It is important we communicate the same message and help all students understand that we will hold all students accountable for any violations of underage use of alcohol (or any other illegal substance).
Dr. Raymond Pasi
Principal, Yorktown High School
Mr. Gregg Robertson
Principal, Washington-Lee High School
Gunfire was heard around 9:30 Friday night on the 1600 block of Constitution Avenue NW, near the White House. According to news reports, a driver was later seen abandoning a car and fleeing across the Memorial Bridge into Arlington. An AK-47 rifle was recovered, according to the Secret Service.
The Highland Park/Overlee Knolls listserv is now abuzz with word that Oscar Ortega, who is wanted by U.S. Park Police for carrying a dangerous weapon in connection with the incident, may have been staying in their neighborhood.
According to an email sent to the listserv on Sunday: “I thought you all might like to know that the police informed my husband and one of our neighbors that they suspect that someone they are seeking in connection with a shooting incident near the White House was squatting in the house on the corner of N. 22nd and Madison that is currently empty and awaiting demolition.”
Spokespersons for Arlington County Police and U.S. Park Police said they were unaware of any investigation in the area. But two residents who spoke to ARLnow.com confirmed that there were at least four police cars parked near the house on Sunday morning.
Oscar Ramiro Ortega is described by police as a 21-year-old Hispanic male with brown eyes, black hair and a medium build. He’s 5’11″ and 160 lbs, with tatoos on his right hand, upper back, chest and on the left side of his neck. Police say Ortega has ties to the state of Idaho.
Anyone with additional information is asked to call U.S. Park Police at 202-610-7500 or 202-610-8737.
Photo courtesy U.S. Park Police
According to police radio traffic, the young female deer was walking right up to Glebe Elementary School students today before school — a behavior much more reminiscent of a lost puppy than a wild deer. In days past, kids had been spotted feeding the deer in a local park.
Arlington animal control officers are reportedly aware of the deer and are trying to capture it.
Photo via Wikimedia Commons
Arlington Republicans are calling on state Senator-elect Barbara Favola to resign her County Board seat by Nov. 26, so that the seat can be filled in a special election in January.
From an Arlington County Republican Committee press release:
Ms. Favola was elected to the State Senate on Tuesday, and will take her Senate seat in Richmond on Jan. 11, 2012 . Under Virginia election law, if Senator-elect Favola does not resign from the County Board by Nov. 26, 2011, then the special election to fill her seat cannot take place until April 17, 2012.
“Leaving this County Board seat vacant for 100 days is simply not in the best interest of Arlingtonians,” said Mark Kelly, Chairman of the Arlington GOP. “We congratulate Barbara on her election to the State Senate and wish her well down in Richmond. Senator-elect Favola can demonstrate her commitment to the best interests of her constituents by ensuring that the people of Arlington will have a full complement of County Board Members during the upcoming Fiscal Year 2013 budget season.”
Aringtonians are encouraged to contact Senator-elect Favola and ask her to resign immediately in order to facilitate a County Board Special Election in January.
Arlington’s Historic Strip Malls — Arlington County is trying to convince owners of garden apartment buildings, one-story shopping centers and other properties deemed ‘historic’ to agree to be a part of new county-created historic districts. But some people are questioning whether the ‘historic’ properties identified by the county are really historic and worth the effort of preserving. [WAMU]
Another Candidate Joins County Board Fray — Arlington County Planning Commission member Peter Fallon has announced his candidacy for the County Board. Fallon, a 25-year Arlington resident, says he has “the experience necessary for the challenges ahead.” He joins fellow Democrats Melissa Bondi and Terron Sims on the official list of candidates hoping to replace to replace state Senator-elect Barbara Favola in an upcoming special election.
Yorktown Wins First Playoff Game — The undefeated Yorktown Patriots football team beat McLean 20-6 on Friday to advance to the semifinal round of the Northern Region playoffs. Yorktown will face the Lee Lancers on Nov. 18. [Sun Gazette]