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Which Wich to Open Tuesday in Ballston

by ARLnow.com | May 16, 2013 at 3:50 pm | 2,414 views | No Comments

Which Wich, a new sandwich shop at 4300 Wilson Blvd in Ballston, is planning to open its doors on Tuesday.

The store is the chain’s first in the D.C. area, and the third fourth in Virginia. Which Wich touts its selection, with over 50 sandwich varieties and more than 60 toppings — offering some 56 trillion possible combinations. There’s also a Coke Freestyle machine at the store, with more than 100 drink and flavor combinations.

“The eatery offers a wide variety of options, from flavorful BLTs to offbeat offerings like the honey-banana-peanut butter-bacon-laden Elvis Wich,” said a press release. “Those seeking a healthy spin can choose from over 30 Wiches and Bowlwiches that contain fewer than 400 calories and 6 grams of fat.”

The store officially opens on Tuesday, May 21, according to the press release. It held a “special VIP Preview Party” on Wednesday night.

Which Wich will be open Monday through Friday from 7:00 a.m. to 10:00 p.m., and Saturday through Sunday from 10:30 a.m. to 9:00 p.m.

Photos courtesy Joy Asico/Which Wich (as noted)

The Right Note: Do Something

by Mark Kelly | May 16, 2013 at 3:00 pm | 647 views | No Comments

The Right Note is a weekly opinion column published on Thursdays. The views and opinions expressed in the column are those of the author and do not necessarily reflect the views of ARLnow.com.

Mark KellyThis is not news, but the Democratic party controls every elected office in Arlington.  While we witnessed a rare, and extremely close, intra-party endorsement contest for sitting School Board member James Lander last week, the accountability for what our elected officials do falls primarily on the press and the public at large.

However, a competitive electoral process with candidates from across the spectrum is healthy, and one we need to see more of here in Arlington.

Running for the County Board twice myself gave me the opportunity to talk to thousands of Arlingtonians from across the political spectrum. When I write about concerns with major spending projects, or the levels of taxation and debt, or the frustrations of business owners, it comes from listening to people. And, I can say for certain, even before I opened myself up to the comments section here, that Arlingtonians are not shy with their opinions.

Over time, many of the people I’ve spoken with have just accepted that our County Board will do what it wants, regardless of any public protestations. I remain eternally optimistic. I believe if we make it a priority to consistently hold our elected officials accountable they will either change their course of action, or the voters will eventually change it for them.

Look at what my counterpart from the left Peter Rousselot has had to say many times in his take. He has called upon his party to have even more competitive primaries. And, he agrees with me that the county’s spending priorities are currently out of whack.

Living in Arlington is certainly a choice for most of us. I appreciate my neighbors and enjoy my relatively easy commute into the District. My children attend our public schools and play in our recreational sports leagues. And, the church we attend is just a short drive away in Alexandria.

Even though our quality of life in Arlington is relatively high, the way to make it higher is not for our County Board to continually dream up new ways to spend our money. Instead, we should hang that big ‘Open for Business’ sign on the door. We should demand independent accountability with an Inspector General. We should put our county’s checkbook online in real time, and then ask if we are getting our money’s worth for our tax dollars.

You have to evaluate for yourself whether you believe a change in leadership would produce better results. Would new ideas and a fresh perspective be a welcome change? If so, you have the power to help make that happen. There is still time to file as a candidate for office this fall. You can actively support a Republican, Green or Independent candidate who does file. Or, you can become more vocal by speaking up in your civic association, at County Board public comment times, and at other public meetings. But please, if you agree that a little change would be a good thing, do something.

Mark Kelly is a former Arlington GOP Chairman and two-time Republican candidate for Arlington County Board.

Peter’s Take: Democracy Wins in Democratic School Board Endorsement

by Peter Rousselot | May 16, 2013 at 2:15 pm | 586 views | No Comments

Peter’s Take is a weekly opinion column. The views and opinions expressed in this column are those of the author and do not necessarily reflect the views of ARLnow.com.

Peter RousselotThe Arlington Democrats School Board endorsement election produced many winners. The clearest winner was the strong affirmation of the benefits of challenges to incumbents by other Democrats.

As I wrote in my May 2 column, we need to encourage more Democrats to challenge our incumbents for the Democratic endorsement or nomination.

As ARLnow reported, James Lander, the incumbent Arlington School Board member running for re-election, won the Democratic endorsement — but only by 47 votes. He received 51 percent of the votes cast. As with any incumbent seeking re-election, both Lander’s record, and the record of the public body on which he serves, were issues discussed during the campaign — publicly or privately.

Without this secret ballot vote, neither Lander nor the School Board would have had the benefit of this Democratic voter feedback. Based on this important new information, they now can choose to make changes in what they have been doing.

Barbara Kanninen, a first-time candidate, deserves credit for challenging Lander. She almost won the endorsement, receiving 49 percent of the votes cast. Obviously, Kanninen raised issues that resonated with a very large minority of Democratic caucus voters. Several Arlington incumbents previously have lost elections by a wider percentage margin than she did.

Like Lander and the School Board, Kanninen now has the benefit of the voters’ verdict, together with the opportunity to draw valuable lessons from it. She clearly can run again and win — if she decides that is what she wants to do. (Disclosure: I publicly endorsed Kannninen.)

The Arlington County Democratic Committee (ACDC) also deserves praise for the way in which ACDC organized, promoted, and conducted this endorsement caucus. Because of the provisions of Virginia law, political parties that want to endorse candidates for School Board do not have the option to endorse those candidates in primaries conducted by boards of elections at all regular polling places. (Contrary to frequent claims that “school board races are supposed to be non-partisan,” partisan endorsements are authorized in Virginia school board elections.)

Political parties do have the option of making such endorsements by a vote only of their managing committees. By choosing the endorsement caucus option instead, ACDC selected the option that offers the opportunity for the widest possible participation by Arlington Democrats. (Disclosure: I played a small role in administering a portion of the second day of the caucus.)

Increased numbers of challenges to incumbents by other Democrats will lead to more democracy and better public policy in Arlington.

Peter Rousselot is a member of the Central Committee of the Democratic Party of Virginia and former chair of the Arlington County Democratic Committee.

Board to Consider Measure to Allow Year-Round Outdoor Cafes

by ARLnow.com | May 16, 2013 at 1:15 pm | 1,129 views | No Comments

Westover Beer GardenArlington County may soon officially drop its requirement that outdoor cafes close for the winter.

The Arlington County Board is considering an amendment to its zoning ordinance to allow outdoor cafes on private property to stay open year-round. The county was previously enforcing an uncodified interpretation of the ordinance that requires all outdoor cafes to be seasonal in nature — typically only open from April to November.

Sidewalk cafes located on public property will still be regulated under the seasonality requirement, but will only be required to close for three months of the year.

The amendment proposal comes just over a year after the Westover Beer Garden, which is on private property, defied the county’s seasonality requirement, calling it an “imaginary rule.”

The zoning amendment provides other policy tweaks and clarifications for outdoor cafes on private property. Among them:

  • Use of televisions, radios and other electronic media will be permitted at outdoor cafes from 9:00 a.m. to 11:00 p.m. The outdoor use of electronic media will still be regulated by the county’s noise ordinance.
  • Outdoor cafes “in side or rear yards adjacent to or across an alley from an ‘R’ or ‘RA’ [residential] District” must be closed between 11:00 p.m. and 9:00 a.m.
  • Outdoor cafes must have fewer seats than the main restaurant, and cannot be used when the main restaurant is closed.
  • All outdoor fixtures must be removable.
  • Only restaurants may have outdoor cafes

The amendment also carries a new legal definition for outdoor cafes. It’s described as “An area that contains portable seating and tables, intended solely for the consumption of food and beverages that are also included in the standard menu of the restaurant, outside the exterior walls of a restaurant (excluding rooftops).”

The Board is scheduled to vote on the measure on Saturday.

New Listing: Arlington Tree Care

by ARLnow.com | May 16, 2013 at 1:00 pm | No Comments

Arlington-Tree-Care-logoEditor’s Note: ARLnow.com will be highlighting the companies that join our Arlington Service Directory this summer. The Service Directory is a place where Arlington residents can discover quality local companies that provide necessary and useful services for people, properties, pets and possessions.

Arlington Tree Care is a forester-owned and locally-based company that helps maintain your trees so they stay healthy and don’t become a hazard.

From the company’s Service Directory listing:

Arlington Tree Care is a locally-based company here in Arlington, maintaining the natural health and safety of your trees. Our objective is to provide a seasonal maintenance program to promote natural health and growth for the life of your trees.

TV Station Stakes Out LBJ Grove ‘Cruising’ Spot

by ARLnow.com | May 16, 2013 at 11:30 am | 637 views | No Comments

Men are cruising for sex at Lyndon Baines Johnson Memorial Grove, and TV station WJLA (ABC 7) apparently has the video to prove it.

The TV station secretly staked out the national park, located between the Pentagon and the GW Parkway, near the Columbia Island marina. They found men continuously driving around the parking lot and going in and out of a public restroom.

Asked about the illicit activity and the lack of enforcement, a U.S. Park Police spokesman would only say that “it goes on everywhere… it’s a problem everywhere.”

LBJ Memorial Grove isn’t the only cruising spot around Arlington where men are looking for casual sexual encounters. As reported last summer, the third-floor bathroom at the Pentagon City Macy’s and the bathroom at Arlington Public Library are mentioned on cruising websites.

Other public cruising spots mentioned online include:

  • Ballston Common Mall (third floor bathroom)
  • Bluemont Park (tennis pavilion bathroom)
  • Chain Bridge (woods near parking lot)
  • Rosslyn Metro Mall (second floor bathroom near food court)
  • Marymount University (basement bathroom in library)
  • Thomas Jefferson Middle School (jogging trail, at night)

Crime Report: Woman ‘Mugged’ in Sister Fight

by ARLnow.com | May 16, 2013 at 10:30 am | 2,649 views | No Comments

A woman had to get surgical staples in the back of her head after her sister struck her with a coffee mug, according to this week’s Arlington County Police Department crime report

The alleged incident happened early Saturday morning in Ballston.

MALICIOUS WOUNDING, 05/11/13, 800 block of N. Quincy Street. On May 11 at 4:20 am, an argument between sisters escalated causing one to strike the other in the back of the head with a coffee mug. The victim was transported to Virginia Hospital Center to receive surgical staples. The suspect fled the scene prior to police arrival, but a warrant was obtained for Jennie Lee, 26, of Arlington, VA.

Also in the Ballston area over the weekend, a cab driver’s jaw was broken after he was assaulted by two young men.

MALICIOUS WOUNDING, 05/12/13, 4300 block of N. Carlin Springs Road. At 2:58 am on May 12, a cab driver was assaulted by two subjects after paying for the fare with a credit card. The victim sustained a broken jaw and was transported to Virginia Hospital Center. The suspects fled the scene on foot and were described as white males between 25-30 years of age.

The rest of this week’s crime report, after the jump. All suspects are presumed innocent until proven guilty.

(more…)

Morning Notes

by ARLnow.com | May 16, 2013 at 9:30 am | 1,186 views | No Comments

Neon sign at Thai Square restaurant (Flickr photo by Ddimick)

Bike to Work Day Tomorrow — More than 12,000 bicyclists around the Washington region are expected to participate in Bike to Work Day tomorrow (Friday). Arlington will host four Bike to Work Day pit stops – in Rosslyn (6:30 to 9:00 a.m.), Ballston (6:30 to 9:00 a.m.), Crystal City (7:00 to 9:00 a.m.) and East Falls Church (4:00 to 7:00 p.m.). The annual event is free but attendees are encouraged to register.

Rosslyn Metro Project 85 Percent Complete – The new Rosslyn Metro entrance is over 85 percent complete, Arlington County announced this morning. The $32.6 million project will add a new entrance to the Rosslyn Metro station, featuring three high-speed elevators and an emergency staircase, but no escalators. With the elevator shaft and the emergency stairwell complete, the next step is installing the high-speed elevators.

Tiny Apartments: Solution to Rising Rents? — The average monthly rent for an apartment in Arlington was $1,999 in 2012, a 13 percent jump from one year prior. A recent forum sponsored by the Arlington-based Alliance for Housing Solutions suggested that one solution to rising rents could be smaller apartments. Specifically, the forum focused on sub-400 square foot apartments known as “micro-units.” [Sun Gazette]

Tuckahoe Home & Garden Tour on Saturday — The 13th annual Tuckahoe Home & Garden Tour will be held on Saturday from noon to 5:00 p.m. The line-up this year includes seven new and renovated homes and two gardens. Tickets for the event, which raises money for the Tuckahoe Elementary Discovery Schoolyard, are $20-25. [Tuckahoe Home & Garden Tour]

GU May Rent Rosslyn Apartments for Students — Georgetown University is considering renting units in the brand new Slate apartment building in Rosslyn in order to house graduate students. The Slate building, developed by JBG and located on the 1500 block of Clarendon Blvd, has 203 apartment units. [Washington Business Journal]

Flickr pool photo by Ddimick

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