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by ARLnow.com — March 27, 2015 at 11:35 am 2,961 0

Police car lightsA man was robbed by a team of thieves on Columbia Pike early Wednesday morning, according to this week’s Arlington County crime report.

Police say a male suspect put the victim in a chokehold while a female suspect went through his pockets and stole a cell phone.

From the ACPD:

ROBBERY, 150325003, 5100 block of Columbia Pike. At 12:38 am on March 25, an unknown male suspect placed the victim into a choke hold while a female suspect went through his pockets and stole his T-mobile cell phone. The male suspect was described as a black male in his 20′s, approximately 6’0 and 230 lbs. He was wearing a dark color baseball cap, dark long sleeve shirt and dark color pants. The second suspect was described as a black female in her 20′s. The suspects fled the scene on foot prior to officers arrival.

Last weekend, police found a man who had been knocked out, lying on the ground in Clarendon. A 49-year-old Woodbridge man was arrested and charged with malicious wounding.

MALICIOUS WOUNDING, 150322006, 3100 block of Wilson Boulevard. At 12:30 am on March 22, officers located a 26 year old male victim on the ground and unresponsive. The victim was transported to George Washington Hospital with non-life threatening injuries. Investigation revealed that the suspect assaulted the victim. Ivan Deloria, 49, of Woodbridge, VA, was arrested and charged with malicious wounding. The suspect was held with not bond.

The rest of this week’s crime report, after the jump.

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by ARLnow.com — March 25, 2015 at 2:55 pm 1,647 0

Dog up for adoption at Taste of Arlington 2012Market Common Clarendon (2700 Clarendon Blvd) will be holding a pet adoption day on Saturday in conjunction with two animal rescue groups.

The event is being held at the shopping center from 11:00 a.m. to 3:00 p.m. on March 28. It will be followed by a “Yappy Hour” at Zaika restaurant from 3:00 to 5:00 p.m.

The pet adoption day is scheduled to be the only D.C. area stop this year for the North Shore Animal League “Tour of Life” bus. New York-based North Shore bills itself as the world’s largest no-kill animal rescue and adoption organization. Beyond that, it’s perhaps best known nationally as the animal shelter publicly supported by Beth Stern and her husband, Sirius XM host and America’s Got Talent judge Howard Stern.

North Shore Animal League is partnering with Arlington-based Homeward Trails Animal Rescue for the event.

“The Tour of Life bus… will park on the Community Loop and house approximately 50 animals ready for adoption,” according to a Market Common spokeswoman. “The Loop will be transformed into an interactive dog park, where Arlington residents will have the opportunity to bring their pets to mingle with other animals, as well as have the opportunity to adopt from and donate to Homeward Trails.”

Ten percent of the proceeds from the Yappy Hour will be donated to Homeward Trails.

by Ethan Rothstein — March 23, 2015 at 6:00 pm 1,795 0

Startup Monday header

Editor’s Note: Sponsored by Monday Properties and written by ARLnow.com, Startup Monday is a weekly column that profiles Arlington-based startups and their founders. The Ground Floor, Monday’s office space for young companies in Rosslyn, is now open. The Metro-accessible space features a 5,000-square-foot common area that includes a kitchen, lounge area, collaborative meeting spaces, and a stage for formal presentations.

Cowork Cafe, a new coworking concept in Boccato in ClarendonA Monday in Boccato Gelato & Espresso in Clarendon looks vastly different now than it did two months ago, thanks to a new Arlington startup called Cowork Cafe.

Founded by David James and Ramzy Azar, Cowork Cafe is a partnership between the two entrepreneurs and Boccato (2719 Wilson Blvd) owner Christian Velasco in which James and Azar rent out Boccato’s lounge for 9 hours on weekdays, and offer it to members for $200 a month. Those members get souped up WiFi, $50 in food and beverage credits, soundproofed phone booths and, soon, personal lockers for storage.

From 9:00 a.m. to 6:00 p.m., Velasco puts stanchions through Boccato’s lounge separating a dozen or so tables — including bars that function as standing desks — for Cowork Cafe members, and keeping a small handful for walk-in Boccato customers. During the cafe’s busiest times in the evenings and on weekends, the stanchions are removed and it’s a full-fledged coffee and gelato shop once more.

“I totally understand the challenges of a food establishment; it’s dependent on volume,” Azar told ARLnow.com over coffee at the cafe. His parents own restaurants, he said, which is party of why old friend James asked him to cofound the venture. “As soon as I understood what coworking was about, it seems like a great way to contribute to the establishment.”

James came up with the idea after years of working at home as an independent software developer left him feeling “a little isolated.” He ventured to coffee shops with his laptop, but those started to become too crowded, too noisy and too distracted. Walking by Boccato’s empty lounge space on a weekday spawned the idea.

Cowork Cafe co-founders Ramzy Azar and David JamesNow, Cowork Cafe has 20 paying members, and two other restaurant businesses have reached out to become the home of the next Cowork Cafe.

“It’s something that could be a lot bigger than here,” James said. “We’re excited about the ability to scale quickly. Restaurants already have space, and we can just plug in and go. That means we can try out a place with low risk.”

Of course, some might raise their eyebrows at the idea of charging $200 a month to work in a space that was previously free, but James said the advantages to membership and the price hit a sweet spot for teleworkers and self-employed professionals.

“Most of the people that work here don’t need to go to a place to work,” James said. “But people can see the benefit of being around a community. If you haven’t worked form home a lot, it’s probably hard to understand.”

The 20 members are a hodgepodge of writers, developers, self-employed professionals and teleworkers, James said. Some have routines and come in most of every weekday. Others float in and out and use it more like a regular coffee shop. With the $50 in food credit, any member can go to the counter and get a coffee or empanada without taking out their wallet; Azar called it a country club-like system.

“Self-employed folks come to these spaces anyway,” he said. “It’s not an office. It has a rustic feel and a great sense of community.”

“A place like this encourages abstract thinking,” James added.

James and Azar didn’t just show up and launch the cafe on Feb. 2 — they put in some key infrastructure, like four soundproofed phone booths for phone calls and video conferencing. James said they installed about 50 plugs and business-class WiFi. They also didn’t quite know what to expect — they put a sign on the retail storefront on Wilson Blvd, held a few open houses and hoped for the best.

The expansion plans are underway sooner than either expected, but James and Azar aren’t saying yet where or when the next Cowork Cafe will be.

by ARLnow.com — March 23, 2015 at 11:00 am 3,577 0

Some 3,700 people participated in Saturday’s Shamrock Crawl, an annual St. Patrick’s Day-themed bar crawl in Clarendon, according to police.

That’s down from nearly 5,000 attendees for last year’s crawl. Unlike last year, however, this one resulted in relatively few arrests.

Police say they arrested two people in direct connection to the crawl — one for assault and battery, and the other for drunk in public. That compares to more than two dozen arrests during last year’s event, including a bar crawl attendee who was arrested for allegedly showing up naked at the Arlington magistrate’s office in search of her incarcerated husband.

The Arlington County Police Department credited planning and cooperation among police, bars, event organizers and neighbors for the largely drama-free afternoon.

“It was a lot smoother of an operation,” said ACPD spokesman Dustin Sternbeck. “We have to credit the bars that participated as their staff refused to let people who were highly intoxicated in. There was a great working partnership for this event between police and the participating businesses.”

“It was a year-long planning process… there were constant meetings among county staff, the civic associations, the businesses and the bar crawl hosts,” Sternbeck added. “It showed positive results in terms of behavior.”

Sternbeck said police “could have arrested quite a bit more for drunk in public” but instead focused on getting those individuals home safely via taxicabs. New this year, Sternbeck and another police department employee live-tweeted the bar crawl and set up an outdoor photo booth — complete with props including a McGruff the Crime Dog mascot head — where they mixed fun with a bit of public outreach.

“We definitely spoke to them directly about responsible partying, appropriate behavior and transportation usage,” he said.

Despite helping to drastically reduce crime, police did take note of one area for possible improvement.

“The biggest problem I saw was people darting into the street before waiting for the appropriate time to cross,” Sternbeck said. Several police department tweets showed attendees dressed in green crossing in the middle of busy roads, in front of cars.

Per new bar crawl regulations that were approved last year, bar crawl organizer Project DC Events was to pick up the tab for police overtime associated with security for the event. Sternbeck was unable to say what the bill was for this weekend, though the Washington Post previously reported that the cost to police was between $15,000 and $20,000.

Photos courtesy Arlington County Police Department

by ARLnow.com — March 18, 2015 at 9:45 am 2,327 0

S. Glebe Road and the Four Mile Run Bike Path at sundown (Flickr pool photo by Erinn Shirley)

Sephora Coming to Clarendon — Skincare and cosmetics retailer Sephora has signed a lease at Market Common Clarendon. The company plans to open a store at the shopping center later this year. [Washington Business Journal]

Contractor Causes Flood in Rosslyn — A contractor on a backhoe caused a mini flood on Wilson Blvd yesterday afternoon, after striking a fire hydrant line. The incident also caused several hours of water service disruptions in the area. It’s at least the second time in the past few months that someone at the construction site hit a water line and caused flooding. [WJLA]

New Website for Rep. Beyer — Rep. Don Beyer (D-Va.) launched a newly redesigned website this week. The site features a background image of Rosslyn and the Potomac River. [U.S. House of Representatives]

Village Sweet Bakery Opens — Village Sweet, a new bakery in Westover, opened for business on Tuesday. Owner Dawn Hart decided to open the brick-and-mortar store as an expansion of Monster Cookie Co., her online, customized sugar cookie business. The bakery is located at 5872 Washington Blvd, next to Lost Dog Cafe. [Facebook, Washington Post]

McAuliffe Signs Auditor Bill — Virginia Gov. Terry McAuliffe has signed Del. Patrick Hope’s bill that will allow the Arlington County Board to hire an independent auditor. The bill will become law in July. Board members Jay Fisette, Libby Garvey and John Vihstadt say they support the hiring of an independent auditor. Board member Walter Tejada, who’s retiring at the end of the year, has expressed reservations about the position. [InsideNova]

Signature Casts Wesley Taylor — Shirlington’s Signature Theatre has cast Wesley Taylor — who has held prominent roles on NBC’s “Smash” and Broadway’s “Rock of Ages” — in its upcoming production of “Cabaret.” The show will run from May 12 to June 28. [Associated Press]

Flickr pool photo by Erinn Shirley

by Ethan Rothstein — March 17, 2015 at 4:45 pm 3,963 0

A new, fast-casual, healthy restaurant in Clarendon has opened its doors at 1028 N. Garfield Street.

Bowl’d marries the quick, customizable serving style popularized by Chipotle with healthy, gluten-free options.

Customers can choose a base of brown or white rice, quinoa or greens, and build their own bowls with ingredients like baby kale, broccoli, garbanzo beans, carrots, mushrooms, red bell peppers and cabbage, along with chicken, grass-fed steak or tofu. Each bowl has at least two servings of vegetables in it, owner Allen Reed told ARLnow.com.

Bowl’d also offers pre-made bowls like the Mediterranean, Reed’s favorite: brown rice, garbanzo beans, broccoli, carrots, red bell pepper, red onion, mushrooms and baby kale, with sun-dried tomato olive sauce and feta cheese, for $7.75. Reed said he likes it because “it’s a bit different… it’s a bold-flavored sauce like most of our options, but different from our Asian and Southwest-inspired bowls.”

The restaurant opened to the public on Friday and will hold a grand opening on Saturday, March 21. It opens at 10:30 a.m. on weekdays and 11:00 a.m. on weekends, and closes at 9:00 p.m. every day but Sunday, when it closes at 8:00 p.m. Customers who come in during the grand opening get “a sweet treat” to go with their bowl.

“Some people who showed up on the first day have come back the next day and the next day,” Reed said. “This is a place that can be part of a person’s routine, because we’re trying to make it easier to eat better.”

All of the items are made in-house, Reed said, including the all-fruit smoothies that are sweetened with apple juice, pineapple juice or stevia, not frozen yogurt or ice cream. He’s particularly fond of the “whole kitchen sink” smoothie, made of berries, mango, baby kale, flaxseed, and rice protein powder.

“It’s a great grab-and-go portable meal,” Reed said.

by Ethan Rothstein — March 17, 2015 at 1:30 pm 1,327 0

Clarendon sidewalk bumpout (photo via Google Maps)The final, small portion of the project to improve pedestrian safety around the Clarendon Metro Station was approved by the Arlington County Board on Saturday.

The County Board approved an easement at the corner of Wilson Blvd and N. Hudson Street, allowing the county’s Department of Environmental Services to extend the curb at the intersection, improving sight lines for crossing pedestrians and shortening the time they are walking in the street.

“These curb extension go out about six feet from the edge of the sidewalk curb line at the corners of intersections and they shadow the ends of the on-street parking,” DES Program Manager Bill Roberts told ARLnow.com. “Curb extensions have been built along Wilson Boulevard, Clarendon Boulevard and throughout the commercial corridors at most of the marked intersections over the last 10 years … and within the residential neighborhoods at the higher-volume pedestrian crossings.”

This final curb extension — in front of the recently opened Don Tito restaurant — is the culmination of the Clarendon Central Park revitalization that began in 2013. County officials held a ribbon-cutting for the new park in November of that year, but the work on the last pedestrian improvement is expected to take a month this spring.

In addition to making it safer for pedestrians in the heavily foot-trafficked corridor, the extensions will have ADA-compliant ramps.

No on-street parking will be removed as a result of the curb extension, we’re told. Construction is expected to take about a month.

Photo via Google Maps

by Ethan Rothstein — March 13, 2015 at 11:30 am 4,908 0

Clarendon’s newest watering hole will be open to the public this weekend, serving tacos, Tecate and plenty of tequila.

Don Tito will open to the public in the former Eventide space at 3165 Wilson Blvd this Sunday starting at 5:00 p.m. It will be considered a “soft opening” as the staff “works the kinks out,” co-owner Scott Parker said as he gave ARLnow.com a tour of the space yesterday.

The three-story restaurant, including two large indoor bars and a roof deck with views of Washington, D.C. and Ballston, is owned by the same group that owns A-Town Bar and Grill in Ballston.

We’re absolutely over-the-moon thrilled to open,” Parker said. “We hope that Don Tito brings a place where people of all ages can enjoy great Mexican-American fusion [cuisine] by my partner Mike, while at the same time being somewhere people can love to have a few drinks.”

Drinks will not be in short supply, with more than 60 types of tequila and a margarita list that includes “The Don,” a $59 concoction of Don Julio 1942 tequila, housemade sour mix, orange juice and Grand Marnier Cuvée de Centenaire, which comes in a take-home Don Tito glass. There are 14 beers on tap at $6 each, save for the $5 Miller Lite.

The restaurant offers 14 different tacos, including a surf and turf, a tuna with avocado and a Chinese five-spice pork taco. On Tuesdays and Thursdays, Parker plans to make tacos half-price.

by ARLnow.com — March 13, 2015 at 10:40 am 1,588 0

Red Top Cab's surface parking lot on N. Irving Street(Updated at 12:50 p.m.) Red Top Cab may be considering selling its headquarters in Clarendon, but it’s not considering ending its service in Arlington, company officials say.

Red Top has signed a purchase agreement with a developer for its properties on Washington Blvd and N. Hudson Street, the Washington Business Journal reported. While that article said Red Top’s future was “unclear” — the reporter was not able to talk to a Red Top rep before publication – Director of Sales and Marketing Von Pelot says the company’s future is secure, even in the age of Uber.

“I was reminded of the words of Mark Twain when his obituary was prematurely published, ‘Reports of my demise are greatly exaggerated,’” Pelot said via email. “Our recent development and introduction of the Red Top Select app which provides our customers with the convenience of booking, tracking, and paying for their ride through their mobile phone, is an example of our continuing commitment to our customers and our community.”

“Red Top Cab has served our community for over fifty years and plans to continue to do so,” Pelot continued. “Over the years we have moved our offices from time to time to update our facilities and accommodate a growing staff. Each time careful planning has enabled us to make these moves without any interruption of service to our customers.”

Red Top moved to its N. Hudson Street location in 1970, after its founding in 1964 by Washington-Lee High School graduate Neal Nichols. Before that it had another office in Clarendon, at 10th Street and N. Highland Street. Red Top’s dispatch center moved to a nearby location at 3251 Washington Blvd in 1994, Pelot recounted.

While a redevelopment deal has been struck, with plans to eventually build 584 apartments on Red Top’s property, Pelot said Red Top is staying put for now.

“No move is imminent,” he said. “Planning is very much in the early stages.”

Pelot declined to discuss where Red Top may move its offices next.

“As is often the case in situations such as this, discussions about relocating our facilities are governed by rules of confidentiality and I can only tell you that we plan to continue to provide service to our Arlington community,” he said.

Disclosure: Red Top Cab is an ARLnow.com advertiser.

by ARLnow.com — March 12, 2015 at 9:15 am 2,272 0

Residents take advantage of warm weather on a trail near Shirlington 3/11/15

Red Top Development Deal Struck — A potential deal to redevelop Red Top Cab’s property in Clarendon, which we first reported in September, is closer to becoming reality. The Shooshan Company has reportedly entered a purchase agreement with Red Top that would build three residential properties with 584 units on the 3.44 acre site. [Washington Business Journal]

Spring Yard Waste Collection — Arlington County’s spring yard waste collection is set to start Monday and run through April 24. For homeowners, the collection will take place the next business day after their trash collection. [Patch]

APS ‘Traveling Trolley’ Wins Award — Arlington Public Schools has won a national award for its Traveling Trolley summer reading program . The trolley helps close the student achievement gap, providing “an effective way for low income families to gain access to printed text by providing free transportation to their neighborhood branch of the Arlington Public Library,” according to APS. [Arlington Public Schools]

New Va. Breastfeeding Law – A new law signed by Va. Gov. Terry McAuliffe allows mothers to legally breastfeed in public, including in privately-owned buildings and businesses. The law will take effect July 1. [WUSA 9 - WARNING: AUTO-PLAY VIDEO]

by Ethan Rothstein — March 11, 2015 at 2:30 pm 2,569 0

RA Sushi roll (photo via Facebook)RA Sushi, a Japanese restaurant chain owned by Benihana, appears on its way to move into 3001 Washington Blvd in Clarendon.

The location would be RA Sushi’s first in Virginia. The chain’s closest restaurant, in Baltimore, has a seven-page menu and offers hand rolls for $5.50 and specialty rolls from $8.50 to its king crab roll for $17. It also sells sake and sake bombs, as well as a list of cocktails, beer and wine.

The restaurant is hoping to add an outdoor cafe along Washington Blvd, but county staff have deferred their recommendation due to concerns about the width of the sidewalk.

RA Sushi would be yet another new business in the large new office building, following Citizen Burger Bar, Cherry Blow Dry Bar and Pure Barre. A Peets Coffee & Tea is under construction at the corner of Washington Blvd and N. Highland Street

We’re told that the chain has yet to sign a lease, but talks have been going on for some time.

Photo via Facebook

by ARLnow.com — March 10, 2015 at 3:45 pm 1,850 0

2013 Clarendon Mardi Gras paradeThe Clarendon-Courthouse Mardi Gras Parade is still on tonight despite the rain and despite Mardi Gras having happened three weeks ago.

The parade is scheduled to start at 8:00 p.m. on N. Barton Street. About 30 floats and assorted groups are currently expected take part in the roughly half-hour-long event, which will run up Wilson Blvd to N. Irving Street.

Last year the parade was postponed due to a snowstorm, before being cancelled altogether due to another snowstorm. This year the parade was originally scheduled for Feb. 17, but was again postponed due to snow.

Matt Hussmann, executive director of the Clarendon Alliance, which organizes the parade, said that he’d rather march in some rain than chance another parade-less year.

“It’s not raining hard,” he said. “What are the odds that if we postpone it again that it’s going to be any better?”

Hussmann said the parade has received a handful of cancellations from scheduled participants, including the beloved Ballou High School Marching Band. Still, Hussmann was optimistic for a good turnout and said the cancellations wouldn’t rain on his parade.

“It’s going to be a good crowd and we’re hoping as many people come out as [possible],” he said. “It should be fun.”

Arlington County Police say they’re planning the following parade-related road closures tonight:

  • Wilson Boulevard from Veitch Street to Barton Street will be closed from 6:45 p.m. to 9:30 p.m.
  • Adams Street and Wayne Street, between Clarendon Boulevard and Wilson Boulevard, will be closed from 6:45 p.m. to 9:30 p.m.
  • Wilson Boulevard from Barton Street to Irving Street will be closed from 7:45 p.m. to 9:30 p.m.

by Ethan Rothstein — March 9, 2015 at 11:45 am 6,419 0

The Bachelor contestants (photo via Facebook)Arlington’s very own contestant on the reality show “The Bachelor” will be at Clarendon’s very own “The Bachelorette” contestant-owned restaurant tonight for the 19th season finale.

Jillian Anderson was eliminated early on this season, and infamously slipped on a rug and nearly fell when she thought this season’s bachelor, Chris, called her name during the rose ceremony. Instead, he picked her competitor, Julia, and 25-year-old Anderson returned to her home in Arlington. Tonight, she will be at Bracket Room in Clarendon (1210 N. Garfield Street) to watch Chris hand out his final rose.

Bracket Room is owned by a former contestant of The Bachelorette, Chris Bukowski, and has hosted viewing parties for the reality show’s season finales since it opened in 2013. Happy hour begins at 4:00 p.m. and the show starts at 8:00 p.m. Bracket Room’s Facebook page says there will be specials on wine and dessert.

At the same time, at Guarapo Lounge in Courthouse, radio hosts Sarah Fraser — another Arlington resident — is hosting a watch party of her own. Starting at 7:00 p.m., Anderson is expected to stop by for another appearance. There will be $1 tacos plus wine and cocktail specials and the chance to win prizes.

It’s unclear at which restaurant Anderson will watch Chris give out the final rose to one of the two finalists, Whitney and Becca.

Photo via Facebook

by ARLnow.com — March 2, 2015 at 4:45 pm 4,823 0

Eventide Restaurant in Clarendon (file photo)(Updated at 5:10 p.m.) Don Tito is expected to open next week in Clarendon.

The “tacos, tequila and beer” spot will be opening in the former Eventide space at 3165 Wilson Blvd. Scott Parker, one of five partners in the business, says Don Tito should officially open to the public on Sunday, March 15, with a “soft opening” starting perhaps as soon as Wednesday, March 11.

Interior work is still underway, but should be wrapping up before the soft opening. The establishment’s exterior sign is expected to arrive this coming Thursday.

Parker says Don Tito will be different than A-Town Bar and Grill, the popular but sometimes rowdy Ballston bar that’s owned by the same group.

“[Don Tito] will have more of a lounge feel to it,” Parker said. “It will be a good place to have a good time and drink but it won’t be as much of a party atmosphere.”

He added that Don Tito will have a bit more of an emphasis on food compared to A-Town.

Parker said retrofitting the former Eventide space went “as well as could be expected.” Patrons can expect a “cantina look” inside, with a lot of exposed brick, wood grain and two bars on the rooftop.

The roof will open when the weather allows, he said.

File photo

by Ethan Rothstein — March 2, 2015 at 3:30 pm 1,865 0

shamrocklogo_newThe Shamrock Crawl, an annual bar crawl in Clarendon for the St. Patrick’s Day holiday, is back again this year, on March 21.

The Saturday following the annual celebration of the Irish spirit, thousands of carousers will be wearing green and holding commemorative mugs for the event hosted by Arlington’s Project DC Events.

To take part in the festivities, drinkers can register online for $15. After 11:59 p.m. tomorrow (Tuesday), the price goes up to $20.

The crawl will start at 2:00 p.m., with participants registering at either the Clarendon Grill (1101 N. Highland Street) or Clarendon Ballroom (3185 Wilson Blvd) before 5:30 p.m. Crawlers will get a shamrock mug to be refilled at participating restaurants, party favors, St. Patrick’s Day beads and $2 slices at Bronx Pizza (3100 Clarendon Blvd).

The participating businesses are:

  • Clarendon Grill
  • Clarendon Ballroom
  • Mad Rose Tavern
  • Whitlow’s on Wilson
  • American Tap Room
  • Hard Times Cafe
  • Spider Kelly’s
  • Hunan One Restaurant
  • Mister Days
  • SoBe
  • IOTA Club & Cafe
  • Don Tito

Last year, thousands of revelers packed the streets all day, including one woman who allegedly tried to visit her husband in the Arlington County jail sans clothing.

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