A new annual community event will be launching later this year
in Arlington. Organizers have released a few tantalizing tidbits about the event, but most details will remain a mystery until a formal announcement featuring Virginia First Lady Maureen McDonnell on Wednesday of next week.
The one-day event is expected take place Labor Day weekend along the W&OD Trail
in Arlington. It will feature “a sports event with a historic twist, a large-scale environmental action activity (biggest in the park’s history) and a festival featuring a national recording artist which we expect will draw several thousand attendees,” said Chris Browne, Vice President of the Greater Washington Sports Alliance.
“It is going to be BIG and very relevant to our regional community,” Browne added.
Wednesday’s announcement will feature First Lady McDonnell, County Board Chairman Chris Zimmerman and Paul Koonce, CEO of Dominion Virginia Power, which is sponsoring the event. The announcement is scheduled to take place at 11:00 a.m. at Bluemont Park (601 N. Manchester Street).
Please be aware that we’re working to fix a bug in the comments section.
When selecting ‘reply’ on certain comments, the page will scroll to the beginning of the comments section. When this happens, you will need to scroll back down to the comment box, which will appear below the comment you’re replying to.
Sorry for the inconvenience. We hope to have this issue resolved within the next 24-48 hours.
Update at 10:25 p.m. on 4/24/11 — Most features of the new site are working, but it may take up to a week to get to the point where we can turn the forums on. Please excuse any snafus with the registration and login process, as well as any site slowness. Thank you for your patience.
Update at 4:15 a.m. on 4/23/11 — The forums are not operational yet. We expect them to be in place by Monday morning.
First, I want to thank all our loyal readers and commenters, who have made this site into a real community in just over 14 months. Our 3,100 Twitter followers, 2,400 email subscribers, 1,300 Facebook fans, and 200 Flickr poolers — as well as the 42,500 article comments we’ve received since launch — are all testaments to the passion many have for Arlington and its unique neighborhoods.
Several months ago, we decided to invest in a site redesign that will help enhance the community functions of the site, while at the same time making the site more visually-appealing. I’m pleased to report that, if all goes well, the new design will be in place by Monday. Here are some of the enhancements you can expect:
- Cleaner page layout
- Message board (forums) for community discussion of issues not covered in articles
- User registration, custom profiles, custom avatars and (maybe) private messaging
- A login will be required for the forums, but anonymous comments will still be permitted
- Prominent positioning for latest articles, comments and forum posts
- Current weather conditions visible on all pages
Early Saturday morning, the site will go offline so that that we can begin transitioning to the new site. Please excuse any technical problems that may ensue.
Although we’re not indulging in the Silicon Valley cliche of visually labeling the new site a “beta,” it will truly be a beta version for a few months. We expect fixes and changes to be a continuous process for a couple of months after launch. Feel free to use the comments section of this article to discuss the new design, report bugs and suggest changes.
Thank you again for your loyalty. Have a happy and relaxing Easter weekend and we’ll see you back here on Monday.
Tonight’s Crystal City 5K Friday race is your last chance to snap photos for our ‘Flickr Flash’ photo contest.
A panel will pick ten finalists and ARLnow.com readers will select the winners next week. Good luck to all contest participants!
Photographers: want to show off your skills and get a chance to win gift cards to local restaurants?
If so, head down to the 5K race on Crystal Drive in Crystal City tonight and get a few photos of anything race-related. Upload the photos to our contest Flickr group and get a chance to win some tasty prizes.
If you brought your camera to last week’s race and haven’t uploaded your photos yet, feel free to upload them now.
With any luck the rain will have passed by the time the race starts. The contest is sponsored by ARLnow.com, Foto DC, Crystal City BID and Pacers.
Flickr photo by Diltch1
Tomorrow hundreds of runners will kick off the first Crystal City 5K Friday of the year, and we’re hosting a contest to make the evening race as competitive for photographers as it is for runners.
ARLnow.com, in partnership with Crystal City BID, FotoDC and Pacers, is challenging photographers of all skill levels to take photos of the first four 5K Friday races and upload up to five to a specially-designated contest page on Flickr. Feel free to use your creativity and take photos of anything race-related.
On Sunday, April 24, a panel of representatives from all four organizations will help choose ten finalists. Then it’s up to ARLnow.com readers to vote for the winning photos.
We’re offering the following prizes to the top three vote-getters:
- 1st Prize: $200 Morton’s Crystal City gift card and a race t-shirt
- 2nd Prize: $50 Jaleo gift card and race t-shirt
- 3rd Prize: $25 Bozzelli’s Italian Deli gift card and race t-shirt
The winners will be announced during the race after-party at Crystal City’s FLASH photo exhibit. Happy snapping!
As it turns out, we’re pretty talkative.
This site has been around for less than a year, and yesterday we reached our 20,000th comment. When we launched, some people questioned whether Arlington was “interesting” enough for the site to succeed. Why not write about D.C., or Alexandria, or national politics, some asked.
About 2.2 million page views later, I think we have our answer.
Thanks for the support, Arlington!
Update on 12/23 — We have a winner.
When Synetic Theater offered us two free tickets to their family-friendly performance of The Nutcracker — playing in Crystal City through Jan. 16 — we immediately realized that this was a perfect opportunity for a holiday-themed contest.
Compose a poem about Arlington, in the style of a classic holiday song or story. For instance, you might work brown flip flops into Twas the Night Before Christmas.
Submit your masterpiece in the comments section, and be sure to use your real email address so we can tell you how to claim your Nutcracker tickets if you’re the winner.
Please keep your poem short and lighthearted. Mean-spirited or obscene submissions will be removed.
We’ll pick our favorite and announce the champion around this time tomorrow.
Photo courtesy Synetic Theater
A quick programming note: ARLnow.com will be up until the wee hours tonight bringing you live, on-location election coverage. We’ll be reporting from Democratic and Republican victory parties, bringing you the latest results, photos and quotes from local leaders.
With that said, I wanted to offer a quick apology for anybody who tried to access the site between noon and 4:00 this afternoon. An ARLnow.com story was linked to by the ever-popular Drudge Report this morning. The flood of web traffic from that one link caused the site to crash — multiple times.
After two server upgrades we were able to get the site back up, albeit running very slowly. After another upgrade things were pretty much back to normal.
Since we were busy with the server, the site went a while without any new posts. Rest assured that we’ll get to any planned non-election-related stories tomorrow.
Thanks for your patience.
If you like the original news and information we provide on a daily basis, please vote for us online, under the category “Arlington’s Best Place to Learn Something New.”
Our most formidable opponent in the voting may be the Arlington Public Library (which isn’t really a business, coincidentally). The library won last year, commands considerable loyalty from the community (after all, they give away stuff for free) and has physical outposts around the community where they can post signs and such for thousands to see.
Help us defeat the big, bad library by voting. Thank you!
Disclaimer: The ABBIES are an ARLnow.com advertiser.
The nominations are in for the ABBIES, Arlington’s annual business awards. Now it’s time to cast your vote in categories like Arlington’s Best “Bargain” Restaurant, Arlington’s Best Happy Hour and Arlington’s Best Community-Based Nonprofit. (Disclaimer: the ABBIES are an ARLnow.com advertiser.)
This year, there’s actually a category that more important than the others, at least as far as we’re concerned. It’s the Best Place to Learn Something New category, featuring a take-no-prisoners competition between Arlington Public Library, Adagio Ballet, Fitness Break, Saffron Dance and yours truly, ARLnow.com.
That’s right, this site is nominated. Thank you to everybody who helped make that happen! Now it’s time to bring it home.
Go to the official voting page and, if you’re so inclined, tick the box next to our name.
The winners will be announced on Nov. 16.
You may have noticed some political ads on ARLnow.com over the past couple of days. Those ads have appeared in spaces that are filled by Google AdSense, an advertising network. We do not control the ads that appear in those spaces.
Starting today, however, you will see a political ad that was sold directly by ARLnow.com. Here are some quick facts about political advertising on ARLnow.com:
- We don’t actively solicit political advertising
- We charge all political ads the same rate as commercial businesses
- Political ads are placed in the same rotation as ads for commercial businesses
- We don’t pick and choose between candidates — any local candidate or cause is welcome to advertise on the site
- Just because we sold an ad to a candidate’s campaign does not mean we will in any way alter our coverage of the candidate or the candidate’s opponents. Our integrity and reputation for fairness are much more valuable than a three-week ad buy.
Please feel free to spread any advertising-related conspiracy theories in the comments section.
Advertisers make this site possible. Help us thank them by checking out what they have to offer.
ADORE Child and Family Services – Adore is an agency that helps place children in loving homes. Find out more about adoption or becoming a foster parent by attending a special breakfast at Metro 29 Diner (4711 Lee Highway) from 7:00 to 8:30 tomorrow morning. Guest speakers will include Jack Dalaba and county board member Barbara Favola.
Gossip on 23rd – Visit Gossip’s boutique on 23rd Street in Crystal City and find the latest in women’s fashion — all for under $100. See some of the store’s latest arrivals here.
Dudley Chapman — If you’re looking to buy or sell a home, give Dudley a call. He grew up in Arlington, knows the area like the back of his hand, and can help guide you through the particulars of the local real estate jungle.
Pathways 2 Independence — If you’re between 16 and 25 years old and you like money, this free financial fair will help you figure out how to keep more of it. There will also be prizes and the promise of a “surprise celebrity sighting.” Mark your calendar for the afternoon of Sunday, October 17.
Business owners: Click here to learn more about reaching the largest local audience in Arlington.
Click here to go to the ABBIES nomination form and — if you think we’re doing a good job — write in “ARLnow.com” in the category for “Arlington’s Best Place to Learn Something New.”
With the long list of bars, bakeries and restaurants that have opened in the past 12 months, we couldn’t possibly expect to win a nomination for “Arlington’s Best New Business.” But hey, if you’re feeling inspired, we’re not going to stop you.
Disclaimer: the ABBIES are an ARLnow.com advertiser. According to officials, however, that does not disqualify the site from award eligibility.