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by ARLnow.com — March 6, 2017 at 4:30 pm 0

A restaurant that can only rarely be seen serving customers is again closed for reported maintenance issues.

Pio Pio, located at 3300 Wilson Blvd between Clarendon and Virginia Square, has been closed “for at least a week,” according to a tipster. That’s despite a “help wanted” sign in the window.

A sign reading “today afternoon closed for maintenance” is posted on the door, as it was this past December when we first reported that Pio Pio was closed for an issue with the roof. It’s unclear if Pio Pio reopened at any point between then and now.

Reached at the restaurant’s phone number, a man who did not give his name said “I don’t know” when asked when Pio Pio would be reopening. “Someone will call you back,” the man said before hanging up.

Tipsters who’ve contacted ARLnow.com have expressed fascination with the “mysterious” business which, like the former Sam’s Corner before it, does not seem to keep regular hours.

Said one tipster:

The Pio Pio restaurant at the corner or Wilson and Jackson has been closed for at least a week. Interestingly, there’s a “help wanted”
sign in the window of the shuttered restaurant. The place rarely has had any customers, and often has a Hummer parked outside. And then there’s that man in a crazy chicken costume who used to stand outside scaring passers-by. Strange…

From another tipster:

… have you guys ever done any investigation as to the real story at Pio Pio? It would be funny if it weren’t so mysterious. There’s literally no one ever in there. They are closed during peak hours including Saturday afternoon and evening. Has to be some story there but I have never seen it told.

by Chris Teale — March 6, 2017 at 3:30 pm 0

Arlington Agenda is a listing of interesting events for the week ahead in Arlington County. If you’d like to see your event featured, fill out the event submission form.

Also, be sure to check out our event calendar.

Monday

The Complacent Class: The Self-Defeating Quest for the American Dream *
GMU Arlington, Founders Hall Auditorium (3351 Fairfax Drive)
Time: 6-7 p.m.

A live interview with “Reason Magazine’s” Katherine Mangu-Ward and Tyler Cowen, author of “The Complacent Class” on our desire to be more insulated, comfortable and accepting of the status quo, and what it means for the future of politics, the economy and the very foundation of our culture.

Wednesday

Free First Time Home Buyers Seminar *
Liberty Properties (888 N. Quincy Street)
Time: 6:30-8 p.m.

Liberty Properties, Arlington’s premier real estate broker, will cover the entire process of buying a home in this free seminar. The company will also have its preferred lender on hand to explain the pre-approval process, interest rates and get attendees pre-approved if ready.

Wine Dinner: California vs. Italy *
Osteria da Nino (2900 S. Quincy Street)
Time: 6:30-10:30 p.m.

Enjoy a complimentary glass of Nino Franco Rustico Prosecco to start the evening, before sampling wines and small plate foods from California and Italy paired together. The event will feature a number of classic varietals from distinctive regions. Tickets cost $95 per person for admission.

Helping Arlington Seniors Stay in Their Homes *
Marymount University Phelan Hall (2807 N. Glebe Road)
Time: 7-9 p.m.

The Arlington Committee of 100’s next meeting focuses on helping county seniors remain in their homes. The hall opens at 7pm, dinner ($28 for members, $30 for non-members) begins at 7:25pm, and the program begins at 8pm.

LUNAFEST
Arlington Cinema & Drafthouse (2903 Columbia Pike)
Time: 7:30 p.m.

A traveling film festival of award-winning short films by, for and about women. This season’s program of nine films – filled with stories of reflection, hope and humor – will travel to over 175 cities and screen in front of 25,000 people.

Arlingtonians for a Clean Environment 39th Annual Meeting
Navy League Building (3200 Wilson Blvd.)
Time: 6:30-9 p.m.

The meeting, “What It Means to Be Greener: Ecolabels and Standards for Environmentally Preferable Products” will include a panel presentation about the standards and labels used in the marketplace to guide consumer choices. Featured speakers will be Alison Kinn Bennett from the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency and Jason Holstine from Amicus Green Building.

Saturday

29th Annual Four Mile Run Stream Cleanup
Four Mile Run Valley (5 Locations)
Time: 10 a.m.-1 p.m.

Arlington County Park Rangers are calling on volunteers for the 29th annual stream cleanup for Four Mile Run at Madison Manor, Glencarlyn, Barcroft and Shirlington Parks and by Arlington Mill Community Center.

Sunday

Arlington Philharmonic Concert *
Wakefield High School Auditorium (1325 S. Dinwiddie Street)
Time: 4-5:30 p.m.

Join the Arlington Philharmonic for a delightful family friendly concert featuring acclaimed pianist Michael Sheppard and a program of orchestral music inspired by the rich tradition of storytelling.

*Denotes featured (sponsored) event

by Chris Teale — March 6, 2017 at 2:30 pm 0

SoberRide announced a partnership with ride-hailing app Lyft last week (courtesy Washington Regional Alcohol Program)The region’s anti-DUI free ride service is switching from taxicabs to ride-hailing service Lyft, starting this St. Patrick’s Day.

Officials with nonprofit Washington Regional Alcohol Program announced the new partnership last week. Lyft, a competitor of market leader Uber, will provide the SoberRide service throughout the D.C. region through the end of the year.

The free St. Patrick’s Day Lyft rides begin at 4 p.m. on Friday, March 17, and continue until 4 a.m. on Saturday, March 18.

During the 12-hour period, area residents aged 21 or older can enter the code SOBERRIDE in the Lyft app’s “Promo” section to receive safe transportation home worth up to $20 for free. The code is valid for new and existing Lyft users.

Lyft will also donate $1 to WRAP for each new Lyft customer using the SoberRide code in 2017.

“We are excited to partner with WRAP in providing safe, reliable transportation to area residents,” said Steve Taylor, general manager of Lyft’s D.C. area office hub in Crystal City, in a statement. “Lyft is committed to improving access to transportation and reducing drunk driving.”

Previously, the SoberRide program partnered with local taxi firms, including with Red Top Cab of Arlington, to provide free rides. WRAP president Kurt Gregory Erickson did not respond to requests for further comment on the switch. Just over 330 people in the D.C. region used the cab-based SoberRide service this past New Year’s Eve.

Besides Lyft, the sponsors of this year’s St. Patrick’s Day SoberRide program include O’Sullivan’s Irish Pub in Clarendon and Sine Irish Pub in Pentagon Row.

According to the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration, one quarter of traffic deaths nationwide during the 2015 St. Patrick’s Day celebrations involved drunk drivers.

Arlington County police spokeswoman Ashley Savage said officers do a great deal of outreach to educate revelers of the risks involved in drinking and driving.

In previous years, Savage said, that outreach has coincided with the Shamrock Crawl bar-hopping event in Clarendon. But even with those festivities canceled this year, Savage said the outreach and education will continue.

“Anytime there are alcohol-related holidays, we always make a point to be extra cautious as officers for those driving under the influence,” she said.

Since 1993, the SoberRide program has provided 66,296 free safe rides home to would-be drunk drivers in the Greater Washington area.

by ARLnow.com Sponsor — March 6, 2017 at 1:45 pm 0

The Chew column banner

The following bi-weekly column is written and sponsored by Dog Paws n Cat Claws, which provides a heart-centered and safe environment for your pets. Conveniently located at 5818-C Seminary Road in Bailey’s Crossroads, DPnCC offers doggy daycare, boarding, grooming, walking and training services, plus in-home pet care.

A few years ago, one of my friends had a rare vacation in which she was unable to take her black Lab, Moonpie, along for the fun. She asked if I could take care of her for the week instead of boarding her. This was before I had a dog of my own and I thought it could be great training for me in becoming a dog owner, something I’d always wanted to experience.

One day, I decided to take her hiking on my favorite trail. When we got to our first manhole cover, instead of walking over it, she detoured around it. I thought it kind of funny so every time we approached another manhole cover, I would observe her behavior. Each time she went out of her way to avoid walking over them.

That night, I spoke with Moonpie’s owner Sonia, and asked about her dog’s little quirk.  She told me, “I know! At some point in time she must have walked over one and maybe it was too hot, or loose or something? Whatever it was, it scared her to death and she thinks manhole covers are the devil now.”

Last year, I was invited to a doggy dip and observed the different ways dogs reacted to a swim in the pool. Some jumped in head first, while others avoided getting too close to the edge. A few clung to their owners in fear. “If a puppy isn’t socialized during the first three months it can increase the risk of behavior problems later in life such as fear, avoidance and aggression,” says veterinarian Dr. Karen Becker.

At Dog Paws n Cat Claws, we recommend introducing a dog to as many different environments as possible. We work with our clients on having a well-rounded dog and to minimize the development of potential fear factors. While socializing your pup with other dogs is important, we think it’s just as important to take socialization a step further.

Introduce Different Environments

When you bring home a puppy or a rescued dog, expose them to as many different environments as possible. Show them how it feels to walk on grass, sand, gravel, pavement, dirt and mud. Lead them into water so they can experience that sensation. Take them outside when it’s raining or snowing to familiarize them with different weather conditions. Because puppies are more malleable, taking them out in different weather conditions can diminish the likelihood of developing a fear of such conditions as they mature.

Taking your dog to unfamiliar buildings is also important. Introduce them to pet friendly buildings and unusual spaces like pet stores, flea markets and outdoor shopping centers, both crowded and sparse.

Put them in your car and visit family and friends who won’t mind having you and your dog over for a visit. Your presence will help ensure your dog’s confidence.

Environmental socialization may be challenging if you bring home an adult dog that already has certain fears or dislikes instilled in him. However, if you expose your dog to these different environments, you will gain valuable insights and can begin to put a counter-conditioning plan into action if needed.

Every dog may react differently to new environments but widening your dog’s environmental socialization will improve your dog’s confidence and make YOU feel more confident the next time you are out together on a new adventure.

Sara Schabach
In-Home Pet Care Manager

by Chris Teale — March 6, 2017 at 1:00 pm 0

Startup Monday header

Sponsored by Monday Properties and written by ARLnow.com, Startup Monday is a weekly column that profiles Arlington-based startups and their founders, plus other local technology happenings. 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.

Boston-based GreenSight Agronomics won this year’s annual Startup Arlington competition, Arlington Economic Development announced last week.

Selected from 129 applicants from 18 states and six international locations, GreenSight uses automated drones to take daily aerial images. Its stated mission is to become a go-to source for aerial information.

GreenSight logoThe company’s platform transforms that imagery into actionable information that can optimize businesses, drive automated decision systems and future autonomous robots.

The company already has contracts with Arlington-based agencies like the Defense Advanced Research Projects Agency and the Office of Naval Research as well as the Air Force Research Lab, the U.S. Army and the University of Maryland.

GreenSight Agronomics will move two employees to start its operations in the county next month.

“GreenSight is exactly the type of technology company that can truly succeed here in Arlington,” said Christina Winn, Arlington Economic Development’s director of business investment, in a statement. “GreenSight’s ability to easily connect with federal agencies and other top research institutions, many of which are already working with the company, will really position the company to be able to grow and succeed quickly. It’s the ideal company to be selected as the Startup Arlington winner.”

GreenSight will receive up to $25,000 from the private equity firm Kiddar Capital, plus get three months of complimentary office space in 1776 in Crystal City and complimentary living space for that time at the nearby WhyHotel, courtesy of developer Vornado.

It also will receive complimentary Metro passes and a Capital Bikeshare membership, provided by Arlington Transportation Partners, and a package of lifestyle amenities and restaurant offers from the Crystal City Business Improvement District.

“GreenSight has customers, investors and collaborators in the D.C. area,” said GreenSight founder James Peverill in a statement. “An office in the Arlington is a great opportunity to engage these partners more effectively and take advantage of the rich and growing ecosystem in the area.”

Startup Arlington applicants were evaluated on criteria ranging from how the company would benefit from locating in Arlington to growth potential and business plans. To be eligible, applicants must have been from outside the greater capital region and the application made under the direction of a founder and/or CEO of a technology-based company.

by Chris Teale — March 6, 2017 at 12:05 pm 0

Columbia Pike shooting suspect Martin Walker (photo via ACPD)A Largo, Md. man was sentenced to 17 years in prison Friday for his role in a shooting on Columbia Pike last year.

Martin Walker, 25, was charged with attempted murder, malicious wounding, use of a firearm during the commission of a felony and possession of a firearm by a convicted felon.

Arlington County police responded to the 3600 block of Columbia Pike on April 20, 2016, after reports of a dispute involving a used car dealer. Upon arriving, officers found a man suffering from a gunshot wound to his leg.

The victim was transported to the hospital with non-life-threatening injuries. Walker was one of three arrested in the case, including the victim, who was determined to be “an aggressor in the dispute” and was later sentenced to a year in jail.

More from ACPD:

Martin Walker, 25, of Largo, MD was sentenced on Friday, March 3, 2017 in the Arlington County Circuit Court to seventeen years in prison for his role in a shooting on Columbia Pike in 2016. Judge Fiore imposed a sentence of seventeen years for the charges of Attempted Murder, Malicious Wounding, Use of a Firearm During the Commission of a Felony and Possession of a Firearm by a Convicted Felon.

On April 20, 2016 at approximately 10:30 p.m., Arlington County Police responded to a report of a dispute in the 3600 block of Columbia Pike. Arriving officers located one male victim suffering from a gunshot wound to the leg. He was transported to the hospital with non-life threatening injuries.

The initial investigation revealed there was a dispute between several subjects and a business owner over the sale of a vehicle. One subject brandished a firearm and shot multiple rounds towards the victim who was sitting in his vehicle. Following the shooting, the subjects fled the area. Officers observed the subject’s vehicle and initiated a short pursuit on Northbound I-395. The pursuit was terminated in Washington D.C. United States Park Police assisted the investigation with the use of their helicopter.

Detectives from the Department’s Homicide/Robbery and Tactical Units developed suspect descriptions. Members of the SWAT Team took Martin Walker and Joseph Thompson into custody from a residence in the 2400 block of S. Lowell Street. Joseph Thompson, 27, of Manassas VA, previously entered an Alford plea to the charge of Attempted Malicious Wounding by Mob and was sentenced to serve one year in jail.

Through the course of the investigation, detectives determined that the initial male victim suffering from a gunshot wound had been an aggressor in the dispute. Gregory Porter Jr., 22, of Triangle VA, previously pled guilty to the charge of Attempted Malicious Wounding by Mob and was sentenced to serve one year in jail.

Detective S. Roeseler was the lead detective and the case was prosecuted by Commonwealth Attorney Josh Katcher.

by ARLnow.com — March 6, 2017 at 11:00 am 0

Money (file photo)Scammers are trying to defraud local Parent Teacher Associations and civic associations.

The scam attempts “have been ongoing for several months,” a tipster tell ARLnow.com. It involves official-looking emails asking the organization’s treasurer to wire money.

On Friday, the Virginia PTA sent the following warning about the fraud to local organizations:

Please note there are fraudulent emails going to PTA units asking treasurers to transfer (wire) money to unknown accounts. Because they look to be sent from your PTA’s officers email addresses, please do not respond or wire money to unknown accounts without first doing due diligence on the request. This is happening quite often — even I receive them. They get names and email addresses from websites.

The tipster, who did not want to be identified, said that civic associations are also now receiving the scam emails.

“Recently the scammers have branched out to neighborhood associations,” said the tipster. “The citizens association that I am involved with has also gotten these emails.”

by ARLnow.com — March 6, 2017 at 10:05 am 0

Arlington Cemetery Metro station

Wakefield Boys Fall in State Tourney — An outstanding season for the Wakefield boys basketball team ended Friday when the Warriors fell to Bethel 62-56 in the state tournament quarterfinals. The Lady Warriors also lost in the state quarterfinals last week. [Twitter, Daily Press]

Logistics May Have Sunk St. Pat’s Bar Crawl — There’s no St. Patrick’s Day bar crawl in Clarendon this year, and the reason may be due to logistics, not lack of interest. Organizers might have been able to get bars on board and their permit applications in on time, one police official suggests. [CityLab]

Volunteers Needed to Bag Meals — The Clarendon United Methodist Church is seeking volunteers to help “pack 20,000 meals for distribution around the world” on Saturday. [InsideNova]

by ARLnow.com — March 6, 2017 at 9:05 am 0

House fire in Aurora Highlands (photo via ACFD)

One person is dead and another is in critical condition after a fire in an Arlington home that had “hoarding conditions” inside, according to firefighters.

The fire was reported at a home on the 2600 block of S. Grant Street, in the Aurora Highlands neighborhood near Crystal City, around 9 p.m. Sunday.

“Units are dealing with hoarding conditions,” an Arlington County Fire Department spokesperson said as firefighting operations were still underway.

One person was brought out of the home, treated by medics and transported to Virginia Hospital Center. A second person was located in the home and later pronounced dead.

Update at 2:30 p.m. — Arlington County has released the following press release about the investigation into the house fire.

One person is dead and another critically injured after a house fire last night at 2623 S. Grant St.

Arlington County Fire Department (ACFD) crews arrived on the scene shortly before 9 p.m. to find dark smoke coming from all levels of the single-family home and flames on the first floor.

After neighbors reported that the two residents of the home were unaccounted for, crews had difficulty entering through the front door because of hazardous hoarding conditions inside.

Widespread clutter in the home not only delayed search, rescue and suppression efforts but was also found later to be a factor in spreading the flames.

Both victims were ultimately located on the first floor and removed from the home. The fire was brought under control in about 20 minutes.

An adult male was pronounced dead at the scene and an adult female was transported to the Virginia Hospital Center in critical condition with life-threatening injuries.

Some 60 firefighters responded to the blaze, including personnel from Alexandria Fire Department, Joint Base Myer-Henderson Hall Fire Emergency Services and the Metropolitan Washington Airports Authority Fire and Rescue.

ACFD fire marshals are investigating the origin and cause of the blaze and have been unable to confirm the presence of any working smoke alarms in the home.

Smoke alarms provide vital early warnings, increasing time for escape and the chances of surviving a fire.

ACFD urges you to:

  • Install smoke alarms on every floor and in every bedroom of a home
  • Test alarms every month by pushing the test button
  • Change the batteries in alarms twice a year, at the beginning and end of daylight savings time
  • Replace all alarms every 10 years or according to the manufacturer’s instructions
  • Contact ACFD for assistance testing your smoke alarms or to request a free smoke alarm installation
  • Ensure every person in your home knows and practices a home escape plan: pay special attention to those needing help evacuating; have two ways out of every room; get low; close doors behind you; go to a family meeting place; and once outside, stay outside
  • Get help for hoarding situations: Arlington County has a Hoarding Task Force to assist in eliminating the hazards that stem from hoarding and to protect the community at large

The time to take steps to make a home safer is right now.

Photo via ACFD

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