Northbound lanes of the Spout Run Parkway are closed due to a fallen tree.
Traffic heading from Lee Highway toward the GW Parkway is being diverted from Spout Run onto Lorcom Lane.
U.S. Park Police officers are directing traffic while crews work to clear the fallen tree.
Vincent Crapps, 24, is believed to have drowned after diving off cliffs on the Virginia side of the river. After an extended search and rescue effort, his body was found by Montgomery County (Md.) Police this afternoon.
Crapps was a member of the 3rd United States Infantry Regiment, better known as the “Old Guard.”
From a Montgomery County Police press release:
Detectives from the Montgomery County Police Major Crimes Division – Homicide and Sex Section are investigating a drowning that occurred on Saturday.
On Saturday, June 29, at approximately 5:30 p.m., Montgomery County Fire & Rescue received a call for a possible drowning of a 24-year-old male in the Potomac River near Bear Island. Montgomery County Fire & Rescue began a rescue mission. Montgomery County Police search and rescue officers responded to the area to provide assistance on land.
Today, following an extended joint operation, Montgomery County Fire & Rescue recovered the victim’s body in the water at approximately 2:25 p.m. Montgomery County Police search and rescue officers were on scene during these recovery efforts. The victim was pronounced deceased at the scene.
Montgomery County Police detectives are leading the investigation into the victim’s death. Investigation has revealed that the victim was diving off the cliffs on the Virginia side of the river when his friends noticed him go under the water and not surface. His friends called 911.
The victim has been identified as Vincent Crapps of the 3d United States Infantry Regiment (The Old Guard), stationed at Fort Myer, Virginia.
That’s what one resident told ARLnow.com in a letter to the editor. “John Henry” — not his real name — says that he has seen unsuspecting families walk into the establishment, which features semi-nude dancers.
“The embarrassed looks I’ve seen from parents quickly ushering out their young children bring tears to my eyes,” he wrote. “There should be some requirement or warning sign on the door of the club or a doorman that warns those entering that it is a sexually-oriented business… certainly not a generic ‘Crystal City Restaurant.'”
(A longer excerpt of the letter can be found below, after the jump.)
Bayne says he has taken steps to make sure the nature of the business is clear to those walking in the door, including a sign on the door that contains the words “gentlemen’s club” and “must be 21 to enter,” but he can only go so far before the county or nearby businesses would object.
“Obviously we don’t want people coming in that are underage… [and] we don’t want people coming in here that don’t know what it is,” he said. But “the county is not going to let us put pictures of women outside.”
Bayne says that he’s willing to put a sign up saying “gentlemen’s club” or “live entertainment” in larger letters outside, if there seems to be a call from the community for it.
“I would have no problem in doing that,” he said, adding that he’s not aware of any other formal complaints about the restaurant’s name. The restaurant does serve a full lunch and dinner menu.
Bayne, a life-long Arlington resident who has three children in Arlington Public Schools, says Crystal City Restaurant first opened at The Arlington Luncheon in 1941. Back then, it was just a normal restaurant.
His father, William Bayne, Sr., purchased the restaurant in 1963 and then renamed it Crystal City Restaurant around 1970, when the neighborhood was first dubbed Crystal City. A relatively short time thereafter, Bayne Sr. added topless dancing to bring in more customers.
The name of the restaurant “wasn’t changed to disguise anything,” Baynes said. “It’s the name of the place.”
On Saturday, Arlington County police made 13 alcohol-related arrests in Clarendon during the All-American Bar Crawl, according to ACPD spokesman Dustin Sternbeck. Among the arrests were two for assault on a police officer and one for a man who attempted, unsuccessfully, to throw a chair through the front window of a business.
Sternbeck said calls for police in Clarendon were “steady” throughout the evening, up until about midnight. “Multiple” fights were reported during that time.
On Sunday, meanwhile, police were called to a pool on the 1600 block of S. Eads Street — at the Crystal Towers apartment complex — for an intoxicated man who allegedly exposed himself.
The 29-year-old Arlington resident exposed himself to about 25 people, including children, while sitting in a chair poolside, Sternbeck said. A lifeguard asked the man to leave, and police arrested him for indecent exposure at his apartment.
All courts, offices, human services facilities, libraries and schools will be closed. Parking meters will not be enforced.
Pools will be open on a holiday schedule. Arlington Transit will also operate on a holiday schedule. Metro will be operating on a holiday schedule, but will be boosting rail service due to the July 4 crowds.
Trash and recycling collection will proceed as normal, as will certain special collections.
All county offices will reopen on Friday, though General District Court will remain closed through the weekend, and the Circuit Court will close at 1:00 p.m.
Flickr pool photo by Ddimick
Mandrake Summers didn’t set out to maintain a collection for 20 years when he started a competition with his friend in his senior year of high school — in 1992 — to see who could collect the most Pez dispensers.
The Aurora Highlands resident, who has been working in Arlington County’s Department of Aging and Disability since 2009, has amassed a collection of well over 1,000 Pez dispensers at this point.
“Partly, it’s a compulsion,” admitted Summers. “I can’t walk into a store, see a Pez dispenser that I don’t have, and not buy it.”
Summers, 37, cites two key advantages to his Pez dispenser collection, as compared to other types of collectables: It takes up very little space, and Pez dispensers are easy to find.
“If I were collecting antique gliders, that would be very problematic,” said Summers, whose hobby also persisted when he stationed in the Ivory Coast for the Peace Corps in 2000.
“I would keep an eye out but my post was pretty rural,” said Summers. He caught up on his collection when he returned stateside.
While he has told his coworkers about his hobby, Summers surmises that if he has gotten any notoriety for it, it’s because he posts his new acquisitions on his Facebook page. One friend told us that he likes the posts because many of the photos bring back nostalgic childhood memories.
Summers owns a number of books on Pez that he uses as field guides, and he is part of an internet community of what he estimates to be approximately 100 or so forum members, who exchange information about new finds and reliable vendors.
Asked if he has any advice for would-be collectors, Summers said: “I guess I would say collect something that’s small because if you collect large items, they’ll quickly take over your house. Decide early on what you want to collect and sort of just commit to that.”
For those who take up Pez collections, Summers has more specific advice.
“My recommendation for anyone who’d want to start, is to go out to stores that are selling Pez dispensers and just buy as many different dispensers as you can, he said. “You can start there and within a few months you can probably get 30 or 40 dispensers without having to go on eBay.”
As for whether he developed a sweet tooth via his Pez collection, Summers says he doesn’t actually eat the candy — he gives it to his stepson.
From rooftops to parks to bridges, many spots attract loyal fireworks watchers who come back to watch the festivities across the Potomac year after year.
What’s your favorite place to watch the fireworks display?
Flickr pool photo by John Sonderman
New Laws, Sales Tax Hike Takes Effect in Va. — Today, July 1, a number of new laws take effect in Virginia. Among them: a new law cracking down on texting and driving, the decriminalization of unmarried cohabitation, and an increase in the sales tax in Northern Virginia from 5 to 6 percent. [WTOP]
NSF Buildings to Be Sold, Redeveloped — Changes may be on the way for the two office buildings in Ballston being vacated by the National Science Foundation in 2017. One of the building is being offered for sale, while the other is being considered for a conversion to apartments or a hotel, according to the Washington Business Journal.
Challenge to Va. Gay Marriage Law Considered — The law barring same-sex marriage in Virginia may face legal challenges in the wake of the Supreme Court’s decision on the Defense of Marriage Act, according to several local elected officials. [Sun Gazette]
Wayne Street Apartments to be Renovated — The Wayne Street Apartments on 2nd Street S. in Penrose have been acquired by developer Penzance. The company plans to renovate the aging complex, raise rents and incorporate the complex into the Myerton community apartment across the street. [Globe St.]
Flickr pool photo by Eschweik