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Next Year’s Vehicle Decal to Feature USS Arlington

by ARLnow.com October 23, 2012 at 11:15 am 6,669 82 Comments

The Arlington County Treasurer’s Office will again be holding a contest for high school students to design the county’s new annual vehicle decal, but this year’s competition will have a theme.

All designs for the 2013-2014 decal must feature an image of the USS Arlington, a new Navy ship named after the county in commemoration of the 9/11 attack on the Pentagon. The ship will be commissioned in Hampton Roads, Va. this coming spring.

The design contest is open to all high school students residing or attending school in Arlington. Entries are due by 5:00 p.m. on Wednesday, Nov. 21. Rules and entry instructions can be found online.

Four decal design finalists will be announced on Thursday, Dec. 13. The winning decal (chosen by popular vote) will be announced on Jan. 22, 2013. The new decals will be distributed next summer, to be displayed on the windshield of more than 155,000 vehicles in Arlington.

  • internet tourettes

    That’s the USS Francis X. O’Leary to you!

    • WeiQiang

      That would be “HMS O’Leary”

      • J

        They should have named a tugboat after Arlington. They the city could tow on land and sea.

        • WeiQiang

          That’s outsourced: Advanced Tug & Salvage

          • YTK

            Will the Trolley also have flotation capabilities? That would help the commute immensely.

          • DCBuff

            Trolley sticker is coming in 2014!

          • Right of Center

            Glebe Rd bridge in 2015

  • JimPB

    Nice recognition for Arlington.

    I wish the government would cease naming buildings, ships and other things after living and recently deceased politicians. Allow at least 50 years after death before naming anything governmental after a politician so that there is time to gain adequate perspective on the significance on the politico’s significance.

    • internet tourettes

      I wish they would have waited on the Reagan naming fiesta. I have a feeling that in a few years history will not treat the man well as well as the immediate nostalgia for his presidency has……

      • SomeGuy

        At least they waited for his presidency to conclude though, right?

    • cbone

      Arlington was selected, along w/ the New York (LPD-21) and the Summerset (LPD-25), in recognition of where the attacks of 9/11 occured, not specifically for anything Arlington did.

      • coppa

        are you saying that pentagon workers and arlington county early responders are not worthy of recognition for the sacrifices made that day?

        • cbone

          well, not all pentagon workers lived in arlington, so should the Navy do a pull on where they all lived and name a ship after each place?

  • Ugh

    A terrible idea. *dislike* How many Arlingtonians have even seen this boat? Almost none. Why not feature the community we have here?

    • Deadite

      How about a decal featuring the Whole Foods logo? Or maybe Pottery Barn?

      • Just Me

        But if corporations want to put their logos on property tax stickers in exchange for reducing rates for everyone….

    • Ren

      Well, it’s based right down in Norfolk. With motor vehicle properly decaled by Arlington County, it’ll be easy to go pay a visit!

    • 1RLI

      How about the Shirlington Oktoberfest? Ballston Common Mall? Columbia Pike before the trolley?

      • YTK

        “How about the Shirlington Oktoberfest? Ballston Common Mall? Columbia Pike before the trolley?”
        Even better, a sticker with “Shirley” on it. Cute gal.

    • drax

      Well, most will see it when it’s on the sticker. Duh.

      • Ugh

        But why is that important? The decal was meant to reflect this community. A boat docked hours away doesn’t seem a fit, regardless of what a bunch of pols named it.

    • SHLady

      well, we’ll see it when we get our stickers.

  • novasteve

    Is the USS Arlington the Froyo tender of the USN?

    • FrenchyB

      I suggest you pose this question to a member of a Marine Expeditionary Unit, and see what kind of response you get.

  • nom de guerre
    • 1RLI

      Except that the sign in the door reads “open.” Karzai will assume it’s photo-shopped!

  • ChugALug

    The sticker theme would make more sense if all those DoD jobs hadn’t moved out of the county.

  • Ashton Heights

    But will the Arlington police pull the ship over when it sails up the Potomac for not carrying a county decal?

    • WeiQiang

      Clown comment, bro. Since the USS Arlington will be moored at the mobile dock unit to be installed at Roaches Run, it will technically still be in DC waters. If it was to moor at DRYC, then you’re talking a fine AND berthing fees.

      • drax

        It could dock at Donaldson Run too. Deep water and not in Arlington County.

      • YTK

        What if we see it floating down Four Mile Run???

        • WeiQiang

          I suppose we’d see the Arlington Alert.

      • b

        Roaches run is not DC property…

        • WeiQiang

          Correct. DC ends at the shoreline.

          BTW, here’s the back story on my schtick: http://www.arlnow.com/2012/05/30/changes-proposed-for-gravelly-point-roaches-run/

        • YTK

          If you really want to see roaches run, consider visiting the site of the Navy Annex demolition – I think the only thing holding up those buildings is the roaches (and the waterbugs, some of which I heard were as big as dinner-plates)

  • Palease!

    How about deleting them altogether! They send them to you before you pay the darn tax to begin with. They are meaningless in today’s age of computers. And while we’re at it, how about deleting the darn car tax too like was promised over a decade ago! Why do people get so exciting about paying this ridiculous tax??

    • Glebe Roader

      I don’t think too many of us are “excited” about paying this tax.

    • ACDC Hack

      Because the county get an over one million dollar windfall from those stickers…they sure as heck aren’t going to give that up without a fight !!

  • David

    Why can’t Arlington get one of those fancy underwater boats named after us?

    • novasteve

      SSNs are named after cities and SSBNs are named after states. Arlington is neither.

      • Quoth the Raven

        Not always. USS JIMMY CARTER, for one.

      • WeiQiang

        so, your input is that things are done one way, unless they’re not?

    • admiral baby

      that’ll only happen if arlington secedes from virginia and become’s it own state. right now, we’re only naming submarines after states…and john warner…

      that being said, the submarines we’re building now are called the virginia-class…so we got that going for us.

  • Mike Honcho

    I say get a sponsor, such as Bud Light to pick up the cost of the stickers, and keep personal property taxes down. I’m sure a regular sticker costs 1/2 what it takes to print a sticker with a of a damn boat, which will never be within 100 miles of Arlington.

  • bman

    I wonder how many libs will complain about promoting war with the decal.

    • internet tourettes

      I wonder how many Con’s will usethis or any other situation to be derisive? Come to think of it, I’d be an outraged Con because because all of the waste and overuns associated with these programs which are just corporate welfare for innefficient and wasteful contractors.

    • Jackson


      • DCBuff

        I’ll take that bet.

        • drax

          How will you know they are “liberals”? Will you ask to see their official Liberal ID card?

          Oh, and also – who cares?

    • dk (not DK)

      note me.

  • Flip

    My submission is a graphic of the ship with an upside-down car on the deck.

    • novasteve

      How about an upside down car, Froyo, burgers, a streetcar and the artisphere on the deck?

    • GoBlueVA

      Wonder of Gov. Romney counted this one in his tally of post- 1917 available U.S. Navy ships?

      • YTK

        Great idea– we could put a DOG CRATE (empty of course) on the deck, in addition to the upside down cars and Froyo.

    • DCBuff

      Can’t have MD plates on ArlCo stickers.

  • ReallyRally

    They have more than155,000 decals and charge a $33 “decal fee” for each. Do the decals really cost $5.1 million?

    • JimPB

      Handling & shipping cost.

      • realist

        Somebody’s got to pay for the public sector’s retirement funds….

        • drax

          Now’s where you prove the retirement costs for Arlington are excessive….no cherry-picking, please.

          • Old dude

            It is extremely simple math: normal folks don’t have a pension and need to save extreme amounts of funds to even hope for retirement. Why in goodness’ name should public servants retire as millionaires (note; do the simple math) while “saving” or contributing a tiny amount of money. It is a simple matter of fairness – just like rich people paying a “fair” share, public servants should do the same.

    • novasteve

      fair trade

    • Chris Slatt
  • Joe Hoya

    The decal should have the USS Arlington flying through space, like the Yamato in Star Blazers.

    • novasteve

      But it will fire froyo instead of its wave motion guns, right?

    • Brian

      Cosmo DNA

  • CA

    What’s next, decal pictures of bayonets and horses?

  • Cletus Van Damme

    I’d be fine with Trev’s mugshot on the sticker…

  • arlcyclist

    I’ll take the bait. A couple years ago it was the Air Force Memorial, this year the Pentagon (which has a 202 area code), and next year a Naval ship. Pretty unfortunate that the county doesn’t have any better options for subjects that represent “Arlington,” whatever that might be. Maybe that’s the problem.

    • internet tourettes


    • Quoth the Raven

      Pentagon doesn’t have a 202 area code. But it does, strangely, have a DC zip code. That might be what you meant.

    • ACDC Hack

      O’Leary used to do that to get under the skin of the County Board….he had stopped for a while after promising to NOT RUN for re-election a couple of terms ago.
      I guess that he no longer has the fear of god in him……

    • YTK

      “Pretty unfortunate that the county doesn’t have any better options for subjects that represent “Arlington,” whatever that might be”
      Sure it does — many half empty small-roomed condo buildings.

  • JNO

    What Bunk! I’ve asked the County, Numerous times, to up the price, say $5 and Include a separate Numerical for those who park in “zoned” areas.
    the present system is far too expensive and seems to limit the number of cars associated with an address. The Enforcement people would Only have to look at your windshield…
    I’ve posed this to several Police officers and several of my neighbors….all in agreement, that this is a better plan

    • T

      This is how the parking zones used to work until about 8 years ago. If you lived on a zoned street your property tax sticker would have the zone number on it. You didn’t have to pay anything extra for it, and you didn’t have to ruin your paint with an ugly sticker on your bumper or keep a card on your dashboard that is certain to get lost or stolen.

      Then someone got this great idea to screw the whole system up and turn it into a money making scheme.

    • T

      Oh, and we didn’t have the bogus decal fee in those days either.

  • love the idea!!

  • Ken

    I’m typing in ALL CAPS so you know I’m agitated…


    I GET the idea that they want/need the fee. FINE: CHARGE me the fee. But why do they make us undergo the ritual of stripping the old county sticker off, buffing the old adhesive off the windshield, and applying the new sticker to the windshield while carefully aligning it to the inspection sticker (which of course is a futile exercise because the inspector will invariably not align the inspection sticker when it’s his turn).


    Thank you.

    • cause

      They do it because they probably get a good amount of extra $$ in fines driving around and ticketing cars without the new sticker on the windshield. A surprising number of people are forgetful, busy, lazy, whatever, and the county trucks cruise the neighborhoods ticketing those people (like my neighbor). I believe it’s a $50 ticket, so it pays the county to pay the people to go out and do it.

    • gymmyray

      AMEN! Fairfax did the smart move and got rid of them years ago. We still pay car tax in Fairfax.

  • LPS4DL

    9:37 AM, September 11, 2001…

  • JnA

    Enough. No more decals. No more decal competitions. It gets more ridiculous, wasteful, and expensive every year.


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