This weekend officially marks the end of summer, with Labor Day on Monday.
Be warned if you’re staying in the area: there are plenty of closures this weekend for the federal holiday.
Libraries, courts, the DMV and recreation centers are among the county facilities closed, although spraygrounds will be open and trash pickup will operate as normal on Labor Day.
Trash pickup, recycling & cart services will operate as normal on Labor Day. See Arlington's full list of closures: https://t.co/N3rWWDa7y0
— Arlington DES (@ArlingtonDES) September 1, 2017
Before we all go and enjoy our holidays, these were our five most-read articles this week:
- Amid Parking Tensions, a Racially-Charged Vandalism
- Crime Report: Man’s Face Slashed in Ballston
- County Launches Food Scraps Drop-Off Program
- Ballston BID Faces Up to ‘First Real Challenge’ of NSF Departure
- Man Spurned By Disinterested Women Arrested for Throwing a Brick At Their Car
And these received the most comments:
- Amid Parking Tensions, a Racially-Charged Vandalism
- Morning Notes (August 30)
- Morning Notes (August 29)
- Morning Notes (August 28)
- County Launches Food Scraps Drop-Off Program
ARLnow will also take Monday off for the Labor Day holiday, barring any breaking news. We’ll be back on Tuesday.
Between now and then, feel free to discuss anything of local interest in the comments below. Have a great holiday weekend!
Flickr pool photo by wolfkann.
Local affordable housing provider AHC Inc. is still seeking volunteers to work in its education programs ahead of school resuming next week.
Spaces are still available to help in AHC’s After-School and Teen Tutoring programs, which help educate young people from kindergarten through 12th grade.
In the After-School program, volunteers work with elementary school students to build literacy and math skills, and to help with homework. AHC asks for a commitment of one hour once a week between 4 and 6 p.m.
Teen Tutoring helps foster both academic and life skills to help teens graduate from high school and maximize their potential. Tutors are paired with one student during the school year, and meet for one hour once a week between 6 and 8 p.m.
There will be several orientation sessions in the coming days for both programs:
- September 6 – After-School Orientation, 6-7 p.m. (Gates of Ballston, 4108 4th Street N.)
- September 12 – Teen Tutoring Orientation, 6-7:30 p.m. (Gates of Ballston, 4108 4th Street N.)
- September 14 – Teen Tutoring Orientation, 6-7:30 pm (Gates of Ballston, 4108 4th Street, N.)
In addition to these schemes, AHC offers various others through its resident services program. Earlier this year, 15 high school graduates in the pilot year of its college mentoring program celebrated finishing the program and advancing into higher education.
For more information, potential volunteers should contact Cindy Rozon at [email protected].
Photo via AHC
Flying Colors is a sponsored column on the hobby of backyard bird feeding written by Michael Zuiker, owner of the Wild Birds Unlimited store at the Lee Harrison Shopping Center. Visit the store at 2437 N. Harrison Street or call 703-241-3988.
It’s that time again. The sun begins to set a little earlier every day. The heat of the day does not reach as high as it did before. The gardens are beginning to go to seed. And your loved ones are beginning to leave the nest and head out on their own.
No, not those loved ones. The wild birds in your backyard. Off the nests and fully grown, they are out to explore. Some will set their GPS and head down south. There, in warmer climates, they will spend the winter.
Hummingbirds are ready to go. All they need are a couple of strong cold fronts from the north to set them flying. They will not fly against a strong southerly flow of wind, because too much energy will be spent. Hummingbird plants are drying up so a feeder will go a long wait to refueling them for their journey.
Keep your feeders loaded with fresh nectar (Four parts water to one part sugar) until early October. These tiny jewels of a bird will feed anywhere from seven to 12 times an hour to keep bulking up for the long flight south.
Nighthawks are grouping up and have already started their long migration south. Look to the skies just before dusk and you may see hundreds of these hawks gliding south. Common grackles are also beginning to develop their large flocks for their journey.
When they come through your yard later in the fall, in 300-bird flocks, your yard can not sustain them. They too eventually will move down to warmer climates and more open pastures. If they are attacking your feeders, switch to white safflower seed. They will not eat this and will leave your feeder alone. When they have left your neighborhood, you can switch back to your birds favorite blend of food.
We will lose a few of our summer birds, but we also are very fortunate to receive a number of birds for the winter. Most common birds coming through here are the many species of hawks. Every time I go out to deliver a bag of seed to a customer’s car from now until November, I will look up into the sky, because there will be an excellent chance that I will see a raptor gliding in a thermal in the sky.
Coopers Hawk, Sharp Shinned Hawk, Golden Eagle, Northern Harrier and Red Tail Hawk are just some of the raptors who migrate down on the wind rivers to settle in for the winter. If you have never been to “Hawk Mountain” near Kempton, Penn., you should give yourself a weekend gift. This mountain from now until November will put on a raptor aerial show like none other.
From the large to the small, we have two birds that become very common in the fall and winter. One is called the snowbird because as soon as we receive our first dusting of snow on the ground they can be seen everywhere.
The Dark Eyed Junco migrates down in large flocks and if you see one in your yard you will see dozens. They feed on the ground and love millet. But do not throw the seed on the ground. It is healthier for them to be eating on a large tray type platform just off the ground or on a hanging feed from a pole.
Millet will also be eaten by the White Throated Sparrow. This beautiful sparrow will be in and among the Juncos and are very common and abundant in the Fall and Winter.
These are just of few of the birds that are on the move. There is also a very large and diverse group of birds that will fly through our area and keep going to Central America. This group consists of Warbler, Vireos, Thrushes and other insect eating birds as they migrate they look for insects and water, for they are not seed or suet or nut eating birds. Their diets consist mainly of insects.
For the short time they are migrating through, you could attract them for a stay by offering them insects. Mealworm larvae is a tempting treat that many of these birds cannot resist. You can offer these mealworms as live, freeze dried and even in a suet type food source.
Water is also vital for these birds. Their travel is always long, and depending on the weather, can be hard. If you are fortunate to catch it just right when a strong storm from the south comes through, thousands of these birds will “Fall Out” and drop into the trees and wait it out. It is a magical moment in nature that affords you a great look at a beautiful and diverse species of birds.
So rather than anguish over the empty nest, celebrate the freedom of these colorful, singing birds that call our backyards their home; even for just a season. Thank them by feeding them a good healthy meal or two and send them, with the winds help, on their way.
Looking for a home? There are plenty of houses and condos open for viewing this weekend.
4312 2nd Road N., #2
2 Bed/1 Bath Condo
Agent: Katie Wethman
Open: Sunday 1-3 p.m.
1730 Arlington Blvd
2 Bed/1 Bath Condo
Agent: Eli Tucker
Open: Sunday 2-4 p.m.
4319 32nd Road S.
2 Bed/2 Bath Townhome
Agent: Kay Houghton
Open: Sunday 1-4 p.m.
3527 18th Street S.
3 Bed/2 Bath Single Family Home
Agent: Jim McCowan
Open: Saturday 2-4 p.m., Sunday 1-3 p.m.
5506 Williamsburg Blvd
3 Bed/3 Bath Single Family Home
Agent: Virginia Smith
Open: Saturday 12-2 p.m.
3413 17th Street S.
4 Bed/3 Bath Single Family Home
Agent: Shoshanna Tanner
Open: Saturday and Sunday 2-4 p.m.
3012 12th Street S.
5 Bed/4 Bath Single-Family Home
Agent: Derek Huetinck
Open: Sunday 1-4 p.m.
Virginia’s State Corporation Commission is warning of investment scams as Texas and Louisiana begin to recover from Hurricane Harvey.
The SCC warned of Virginians receiving unsolicited emails, social media messages, pitches or telephone calls promoting investment pools or bonds to help storm victims, or to make investments in water-removal or purification technologies, electricity-generating devices and distressed real estate remediation programs.
“Disasters bring out the best in some people, but they bring out the worst in others,” Ron Thomas, director of the SCC’s Division of Securities and Retail Franchising, said in a statement. “Fraudsters often follow the headlines to peddle their schemes. Be leery of unsolicited investment opportunities that seek to capitalize on Hurricane Harvey’s devastation.”
The SCC advised people to do the following:
- Delete unsolicited emails or social media messages and hang up on aggressive cold callers promoting hurricane-related investments, especially those from small companies touting unproven or new technologies or products.
- Don’t be pressured to make rushed decisions about investments you don’t understand. Before making a decision to invest, request written information that fully explains the investment.
- Don’t fall for unrealistic claims or offers touting guaranteed returns with little or no risk. Every investment involves some degree of risk.
- Do your homework. Contact the SCC’s Division of Securities and Retail Franchising to check that both the seller and investment are registered. If they are not, don’t invest. Contact information is available on the division’s website at www.scc.virginia.gov/srf/srf_contact.
- If you suspect you are the victim of fraud, report it to your state securities regulator immediately.
On a cool, gray day when the calendar flipped to September, there was another sign of the start of fall in Arlington: the arrival of the ever-popular Pumpkin Spice Latte at at least some local Starbucks stores.
The sugary, caffeinated beverage is as much a harbinger of fall as crunching twigs and acorns, plaid flannel shirts and brown boots. This year its potential Sept. 1 availability was cryptically teased by Starbucks on its social media accounts, though an official release date has yet to be announced.
This morning at the Clarendon Starbucks store (2690 Clarendon Blvd), there were plenty of Starbucks customers who knew to ask for the “PSL” by name, despite a lack of signs or updated menus announcing its availability. And for those who asked for it, they received it.
After successfully ordering a grande Pumpkin Spice Latte (and paying $5.57 with tax for the privilege), an ARLnow.com reporter asked the barista how many PSLs had been served so far that morning.
“A lot,” she said.
With schools set to welcome students for the new year this coming Tuesday, Arlington Public Schools and the Arlington County Police Department are urging everyone to stay safe on the roads.
Police will conduct highly visible traffic enforcement around county schools starting that day, while electronic message boards placed next to the roads will remind everyone of the start of school.
To ensure everyone’s safety, police reminded drivers to:
- Obey speed limits which may change during school zone times.
- Avoid distracted driving and keep your attention on the road.
- Watch for students walking and riding bikes to school.
- Don’t pass a stopped school bus loading or unloading passengers.
- On a two-lane road, vehicles traveling in both directions must stop.
- On a multi-lane paved across road, vehicles traveling in both directions must stop.
- On a divided highway, vehicles behind the bus must stop. Vehicles traveling in the opposite direction may proceed with caution.
- Have all vehicle occupants wear their seat belts.
— ArlingtonCountyPD (@ArlingtonVaPD) August 29, 2017
Students, bicyclists, and pedestrians are reminded to:
- Cross the street at marked crosswalks and never against a red light.
- Look before you cross and follow the direction of school crossing guards.
- Always walk on designated sidewalks or paths, never along the side of a road.
And for general safety, students and parents are reminded to:
- Ensure students know their address and phone number.
- Be aware of your surroundings.
- Whenever possible, walk or bike with another person. Stay in well-lit areas.
- Limit the use of devices that may distract you.
- Avoid engaging with or answering questions from strangers.
- If something occurs that makes you feel unsafe, report the incident immediately to an adult such as a parent, guardian, principal, teacher or school resource officer.
- Parents and guardians are encouraged to roleplay possible situations with students and discuss personal safety and awareness tips.
In a video (below) released by APS, Superintendent Patrick Murphy, Police Chief Jay Farr and School Resource Officer supervisor Lt. Susan Noack, the three urge being safe, like staying within speed limits, avoiding distracted driving and looking out for students on bicycles or on foot.
The trio also encouraged parents practice looking both ways at crosswalks before crossing the street, as well as having a buddy to walk with.
(Updated at 12:30 p.m.) A series of public meetings will be held next week to discuss a possible new pedestrian connection between Crystal City and Reagan National Airport.
The meetings are scheduled to take place Tuesday, September 5 on the 11th floor of 2011 Crystal Drive, from 11:30 a.m. to 1 p.m. and 6:30-8 p.m. Both meetings will have the same agenda, with staff from the Crystal City Business Improvement District looking to gather public feedback on the proposed pedestrian link.
RSVPs for either meeting are requested but not required.
“Imagine walking from Crystal City’s main street to the airport in just under 5 minutes,” the meetings’ event page says. “The CC2DCA Pedestrian Connection Feasibility Study that is investigating this possibility.”
Earlier this year, the BID issued a Request for Proposals asking for consultants to study a possible connection. The deadline for sending those proposals, which included the studying of optimal alignments, real estate, regulations, costs and necessary approvals, has since passed.
BID officials say a new pedestrian crossing would help leverage various transportation improvements in Crystal City, including the revamped VRE station and a proposed new Metro station entrance on Crystal Drive. Reagan National is also set for a $1 billion refresh, with construction there expected to conclude in 2021.
Map via Google Maps
It’s September — As if to emphasize that today is the start of September and the first day of meteorological autumn, mother nature has dialed up a crisp start to the morning and a cool day overall in the D.C. area. [Twitter, NOAA]
Arlington Seeing Airbnb Tax Revenue — The recently-implemented enforcement of the transient occupancy tax on Airbnb-style rentals in Arlington County is producing revenue: nearly $18,000 through July. County tax enforcers think taxes on Airbnb and other short-term rentals may eventually bring in $250,000-$1.5 million per year. [InsideNova]
HS Football Kicks Off — The high school football season has kicked off for Arlington’s high schools. Wakefield defeated Washington-Lee 37-27 last night at the Generals’ home turf. The game was attended by a number of Arlington Public Schools officials, including Superintendent Dr. Patrick Murphy. Also Thursday night, Yorktown defeated D.C.’s Wilson High School 20-14. Arlington-based private high school Bishop O’Connell lost its season opener. [Twitter, Twitter, InsideNova, InsideNova]
Flickr pool photo by John Sonderman
Just Listed highlights Arlington properties that just came on the market within the past week. This feature is written and sponsored by Team Cathell, “Your Orange Line Specialists.”
Arlington’s summer market continued at a good pace this week with 71 new listings and 61 ratified contracts, 19 of those selling within a week.
Interest rates fluctuated this week with a drop of about eight basis points, then a regain to end a few basis points lower. The 30-yr fixed rate with no points is now at about 3.97%. Jittery investors moved capital into US Bonds on the news of the North Korean missile launch over Japan, which lowered the yield. But strong economic news on jobs growth and quarterly GDP growth is expected to lead to higher long term rates.
Our hearts go out to the victims of Hurricane Harvey. We encourage you to help however you can, but be cautious. Already there are scammers seeking donations. So give to reputable organizations.
Click to see all the fresh new inventory in MRIS and call Team Cathell (703-975-2500) when you find a home you like.
- 1024 UTAH ST #225, ARLINGTON, VA 22201 – $369,000
- 2874 BUCHANAN ST, ARLINGTON, VA 22206 – $422,900
- 2400 CLARENDON BLVD #105, ARLINGTON, VA 22201 – $534,900
- 1200 HARTFORD ST N #507, ARLINGTON, VA 22201 – $625,000
- 2416 QUANTICO ST, ARLINGTON, VA 22207 – $715,000
- 1239 TAYLOR ST, ARLINGTON, VA 22201 – $740,000
- 1105 20TH ST S, ARLINGTON, VA 22202 – $875,000
- 4857 35TH RD N, ARLINGTON, VA 22207 – $1,049,000