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by Chris Teale December 4, 2017 at 4:45 pm 0

A nationally-known Pilates studio has opened its first D.C.-area location in Pentagon Row.

Club Pilates had its soft opening this weekend at 1101 S. Joyce Street, and will host a grand opening celebration on January 6. The gym is next to the Saigon Saigon restaurant. It had planned to open earlier, but organizers blamed delays on the county permitting process.

The soft opening included three full days of free 30-minute introductory classes and specials. Soft opening pricing specials are available through January 5 and include 20 percent off the first three months, 5 percent off an annual membership and the waiving of the enrollment fee.

Classes are available in the mornings and evenings at the studio, which modernizes traditional Pilates with the help of state-of-the-art equipment. Eight different class formats are available, with four levels of difficulty.

“Club Pilates is like nothing the DC area has ever seen — merging a variety of exercises that complement the core traditional Pilates practice,” studio owner Michael Grams said in a statement. “And in our efforts to modernize the workout even further, we’re bringing a group class feel with slightly larger classes (12 reformers vs. the traditional 2 to 8) so students will feel the motivation of community while providing personalized attention in this all-in-one workout.”

by Chris Teale November 30, 2017 at 10:45 am 0

Second Lady Karen Pence is scheduled to appear on Arlington community radio station WERA next week.

Pence will join a show hosted by citizens group Embracing Arlington Arts to discuss art therapy, the group’s chairwoman said. The show will air Tuesday, December 5 at 3 p.m. and will raise awareness of the role art therapy plays as a mental health treatment, we’re told.

Pence has started a blog about her efforts to spread the word about art therapy, and posts regularly on Twitter about its positive impact on veterans, those fighting cancer and children suffering from mental illness, among others.

“I am so thrilled to not only be able to chat with Mrs. Pence, but also to discuss such an important topic as art therapy — her policy priority as Second Lady,” Janet Kopenhaver, chair of Embracing Arlington Arts, said in a statement.

According to the American Art Therapy Association, art therapy is an “integrative mental health and human services profession that enriches the lives of individual, families and communities through active art-making, creative process, applied psychological theory and human experience within a psychotherapeutic relationship.”

The association said it can help improve cognitive functions, foster self-esteem and self-awareness, cultivate resilience, enhance social skills and reduce/resolve conflicts and distress.

Official White House photo by Allaina Parton

by Chris Teale November 29, 2017 at 3:45 pm 0

A camera store already in Burke and D.C. plans to open a new flagship location in Virginia Square.

District Camera & Imaging will move into the first floor of the ARC condo building at 3409 Wilson Blvd. An employee who answered the phone at the Burke store confirmed it will be its third location, and not replace the existing ones.

The employee said District Camera is targeting a February or March opening in Arlington, and that with a big space, they have big plans.

“We’re going to make it our flagship store,” he said. “It’s a broader and bigger space, so we’re going to try and use it to display more inventory.”

District Camera currently sells all manner of photography equipment, including cameras, accessories, tripods and batteries. It also offers equipment rentals, printing facilities and classes on photography skills.

by Chris Teale November 28, 2017 at 9:45 am 0

With the Thanksgiving holiday over, a number of local Christmas tree sales are now underway.

The Arlington Optimist Club’s tree sale at the Well Fargo bank parking lot on the corner of Lee Highway and N. Glebe Road began last Friday (November 24).

The schedule for the sales will be as follows:

  • Monday to Thursday: 2 to 8 p.m.
  • Friday: Noon to 8 p.m.
  • Saturday and Sunday: 9 a.m. to 8 p.m.

The Clarendon United Methodist Church (607 N. Irving Street) started its tree sale on Saturday (November 25). All proceeds go towards Rise Against Hunger (formally Stop Hunger Now), the Arlington Food Assistance Center and other ministries that help those in need.

The hours of the sales are as follows:

  • Saturdays: 11 a.m. to 7 p.m.
  • Sundays: Noon to 6 p.m.
  • Weeknights: 6-9 p.m.

The South Arlington Lions Club’s sale was forced to move this year from the intersection of Columbia Pike and S. George Mason Drive due to development at the site.

Now, the sale is located at American Legion Post 139 (3445 Washington Blvd) in Virginia Square, and began last Friday too.

And Our Lady of Lourdes Catholic Church (830 23rd Street S.) in Aurora Highlands is hosting a tree sale by the local chapter of the Knights of Columbus. When an ARLnow reporter dropped by the church on Monday afternoon, trees were in the church’s front yard, but there are no details available online about hours.

Other usual Christmas tree sale locations include Whole Foods stores, local farmers markets, the Cathedral of St. Thomas More (3901 N. Cathedral Lane), the Dominion Hills shopping center (6000 Wilson Blvd) and the Unleashed by Petco parking lot (5400 Lee Highway).

by Chris Teale November 27, 2017 at 10:45 am 0

The planned Verizon store in Clarendon is expected to open in mid-December, according to the company’s website.

Signs are up for the store at 2930 Clarendon Blvd, and Verizon said the store should be open on Monday, December 11. Originally, it had been planned to open late last month, but that has been pushed back.

It replaces the former Pinkberry froyo shop, next to Cava Mezze. Verizon stores offer wireless plans, smartphones, cases and other products and services. The only other Verizon-operated store in Arlington is in the Fashion Centre at Pentagon City mall.

by Chris Teale November 22, 2017 at 1:45 pm 0

A bar that combines an extensive drinks menu with board games is now open in Clarendon.

The Board Room opened yesterday (Tuesday) at 925 N. Garfield Street, in the space formerly occupied by Sehkraft Brewing. This is The Board Room’s second location — it already has one in Dupont Circle.

It has space for around 140 people in the main bar area, as well as the adjoining “Ms. Peacock’s Champagne Lounge,” which was the butcher shop. Mark Handwerger, owner of The Board Room’s parent company Bedrock Bars, said this morning that he expects that section to be open on Friday, depending on construction.

The Board Room will look to continue Sehkraft’s in-house brewing, and Handwerger said it will start to have its own beer available for purchase on Monday, made initially at a commercial brewer. It also has an extensive cocktail and food menu.

Board games are available for rent, with various box tops from other board games added to the walls as art throughout. Even the entrances to the restrooms have references to board games on their doors.

Handwerger had planned to open The Board Room earlier, but construction issues caused delays.

by Chris Teale November 22, 2017 at 10:45 am 0

The day after Thanksgiving promises to be a busy one for the Fashion Centre at Pentagon City, as it throws open its doors at 7 a.m. for Black Friday.

It marks the start of the Christmas shopping period across the country, and the mall here will be open until 9:30 p.m. for shoppers looking for deals.

Todd Jerscheid, director of marketing and business development, said anticipation is building for customers and mall employees alike.

“It’s like our Super Bowl Day, if you will. It’s a big day for us,” he said. “It’s where retailers really pull out all the stops and put their best foot forward, and not only supply great sales and promotions and that sort of thing, but it’s also offering that customer experience and welcoming shoppers in during the holiday.”

Jerscheid said customers can expect a slightly slower start to the morning — fewer doorbuster shoppers — than in some other places that open early for Black Friday. But then by mid-morning, foot traffic really picks up.

“I’ve been here nine years, and we pretty much have a very good flow of traffic on Black Friday,” he said. “We are not an early-riser mall, like some malls that open really early in the morning. I would say from 11 a.m. on, the traffic becomes very heavy and then it goes on through the remainder of the evening.”

As in previous years, Jerscheid said the mall will offer its “Shopper Survivor Kit” for the first 100 people who visit Guest Services after opening. The kit has bottled water, coupons, samples and snacks, and is intended to encourage people to shop early in the day.

And the other offer, which Jerscheid said is a “pretty big hit,” is “Santa’s Grab Bag Giveaway.” If a shopper spends $150 or more between 7 and 9 a.m., they can reach into the grab bag and have a chance to win gift cards, prizes from retailers or even a free coffee at Starbucks.

That is in addition to the dozens of stores that will have sales and deals throughout Black Friday and the weekend, while the mall will have a special visitor for children of all ages.

“We can’t forget the big man in the red suit,” Jerscheid said. “He is definitely here. He arrived on November 18, and will be here for photos… Kids can also write a little letter electronically to Santa and send it up to the North Pole.”

by Chris Teale November 21, 2017 at 2:45 pm 0

A British-based clothing store is now open at the Fashion Centre at Pentagon City.

Superdry opened a 5,600-square-foot store next to Kate Spade New York on the mall’s second level earlier this month.

The chain offers “vintage Americana and Japanese-inspired graphics with a British style,” and is known for, among other things, its Windcheater jackets that keep the worst of the weather off. It also has clothing for men and women, and does a line of sportswear.

Its only other location in Virginia is in Tysons Corner, with another at the Clarksburg Premium Outlets in Maryland.

“Inspired by a trip to Tokyo in 2003, Superdry fuses design influences from Japanese graphics and vintage Americana, with the values of British tailoring,” reads a blurb on the mall’s website. “The result – unique urban clothing, with incredible branding and an unrivalled level of detailing. Such distinctiveness has gained the brand exclusive appeal, as well as an international celebrity following.”

by Chris Teale November 21, 2017 at 1:45 pm 0

(Updated at 4 p.m.) One of the last remaining businesses has departed the Buck property in Virginia Square, ahead of potential redevelopment of the site.

The Jumping Joeys children’s gym closed its doors at 1425 N. Quincy Street, across from Washington-Lee High School, on Sunday, November 12, according to a post on its website. It was part of the “Quincy Street Technology Center,” which included gyms and an Arlington Public Schools building and is zoned for light industrial use.

Still open in Falls Church, Jumping Joeys lets children bounce on soft play equipment, and is available for “Open Bounce” sessions open to the general public as well as for private parties and events.

That followed another closure in late August, when the NOVA MMA/CrossFit Arlington gym in the same building shuttered.

It sets the stage for the long-discussed redevelopment of the Buck property, a conversation that the county’s Joint Facilities Advisory Commission continued earlier this year.

Last month, Arlington County sold $34 million in revenue bonds to fund the purchase of the Buck property.

The deadline for the final payment of $27 million for the property was yesterday (November 20). A county spokeswoman said the county closed on the transaction as planned.

The Buck property could could allow for a building to be used by Arlington Public Schools, as well as provide space for the Office of Emergency Management and other public safety agencies, while some offer bus parking for both APS and Arlington Transit (ART).

One business remains at the site: Dynamic Gymnastics. It received an extension to its lease, which will terminate on May 31, 2018.

by Chris Teale November 21, 2017 at 9:45 am 0

Arlington County’s only Jerry’s Subs & Pizza has reopened after remodeling.

The eatery at 2041 15th Street N. in Courthouse appears to have been given a new lick of paint and some upgraded lighting.

When an ARLnow reporter dropped by on Monday evening, business was steady after the reopening, which employees said happened last week.

Jerry’s serves pizza, hot and cold subs and a variety of cheesesteaks. It is across the street from Arlington County jail, next door to a bond office and is a block away from an entrance to the Courthouse Metro station.

Hat-tip to Joshua Folb

by Chris Teale November 20, 2017 at 4:30 pm 0

The Arlington Cinema & Drafthouse (2903 Columbia Pike) will show the new Star Wars movie next month in what is being described as a first for the theater.

The iconic local business will show “Star Wars: The Last Jedi” from December 14 until January 11. Customers are being asked to buy tickets in advance due to high anticipated demand.

Due to what organizers called the “special screening nature” of the film, tickets cost $10 in the evening and $8 for matinees.

It comes as part of the Drafthouse’s decision to shift to playing movies on a first-run basis, meaning it has quicker access to films.

Owner Greg Godbout has said that the rise of video on-demand services has hurt its previous business model of showing mainstream movies several months after the initial release.

Income from the movie could be small for the Drafthouse, however, as like all movie theaters it reportedly must turn over at least 65 percent of revenue generated by ticket sales to Disney, which owns the Star Wars franchise.

The Drafthouse is making the most of its Star Wars deal, holding dozens of screenings and even offering the chance to host Star Wars-themed parties for businesses. Via a Drafthouse email forwarded to ARLnow.com:

Host a STAR WARS PARTY!!!  Is your company looking for a fun alternative holiday party? The Drafthouse can accommodate your group with our restaurant style seating, giant screen, no hassle buffet style catering options as well as our FULL BAR!! Give your employee’s the gift of a private screening.

Availability: Monday – Friday 9am – 5pm.  December 15th – January 11th.

Contact us: [email protected] for a full offering of catering, bar and rental options.

by Chris Teale November 20, 2017 at 1:45 pm 0

More than a dozen people protested outside Harris Teeter in Ballston this morning (Monday), urging the grocery store to make it easier to access a form of emergency contraception.

Protestors gathered near the store at 600 N. Glebe Road just after 10 a.m. holding signs and chanting, urging the grocery store to put Plan B One Step on its shelves. Currently, customers must pick up a card on the shelf for Plan B and take it to either a pharmacist or store manager to redeem it.

Plan B is a time-sensitive medication to prevent unintended pregnancy when taken within 72 hours of unprotected sex, but the sooner it can be taken, the more effective it is.

The protest was organized by Reproaction, a direct action group formed two years ago to help increase access to abortion and reproductive justice: the right to parent, the right not to parent and the right to raise children in safe and healthy communities.

“For over four years, the FDA has authorized emergency contraception to be sold on the shelf to anyone regardless of age or gender,” Erin Matson, co-director of Reproaction, said. “You pick it up off the shelf the way you do Tylenol. What Harris Teeter does is asinine.”

For others protesting, it was a chance to stand up for the rights of immigrants and the LGBTQ community, who are able to access such contraception easier than other types requiring identification.

“Plan B is something we have fought for so we don’t have any barriers for it,” Alejandra Pablos of the Virginia Latina Advocacy Network said. “It’s very important when you think about all the immigrant people, the trans people from the LGBTQ community having Plan B accessible to you without ID, without that barrier is super important.”

And Shireen Shakouri, another protestor, said she came to protest after some difficult experiences in the grocery store.

“When I was younger, trawling through the aisle that had sexual health products, I was often followed,” she said. “I don’t need that policing now, I didn’t need it then and I’m here to speak out against it.

Matson said Monday’s action is part of a wider push against the grocery store’s policy, timed to coincide with Thanksgiving and Christmas.

“We’re kicking off our campaign to make HT put emergency contraception on the shelf where it belongs at the beginning of the holiday season on purpose,” she said. “This is a time when shoppers are busy and coming over here, and we wanted to make sure we got the word out and make this change happen.”

For its part, Harris Teeter said in a statement posted on news website Rewire last year that the product must be sold by a pharmacy associate or store manager, as they are certified under the Health Insurance Portability and Accountability Act.

by Chris Teale November 20, 2017 at 10:45 am 0

A workout studio is coming to Clarendon’s Market Common.

Barre3 is set to move into the shopping center at 2800 Clarendon Blvd, above cosmetics store Sephora and between beauty salon Acqua Nails and the space formerly occupied by Indian restaurant Zaika.

The studio’s classes give a full-body workout, including by using a barre typically used by ballet dancers for balance.

“Barre3 mixes athleticism, grace, and the latest innovations designed to balance the body,” Barre3’s website reads. “Whether you have ten minutes or an hour, each full-body workout optimizes every moment with moves that adapt to your body for maximum results.”

This new, approximately 2,600 square foot studio will be the first in Arlington. The only other one in Virginia is located in Old Town Alexandria.

No word yet on an opening date for the Clarendon location, which looks set to be part of a revamp planned at Market Common by developer Regency Centers.

by ARLnow.com November 17, 2017 at 7:00 pm 0

For the latest 26 Square Miles podcast, we spoke with County Board member John Vihstadt about last week’s elections in Virginia, his reelection bid next year and various issues facing Arlington County, including budget pressures and development.

We also asked Vihstadt about the possibility of Arlington landing Amazon’s second corporate headquarters.

Listen below or subscribe to the podcast on iTunesGoogle PlayStitcher or TuneIn.

by Chris Teale November 17, 2017 at 10:00 am 0

Arlington County’s newest Dunkin’ Donuts is now open in Clarendon.

The combined Dunkin’ Donuts and Baskin Robbins store at 3009 Clarendon Blvd celebrated its grand opening this morning (Friday). The celebrations include free doughnuts for all customers and appearances by mascots Cuppy and Sprinkles and cheerleaders for the Washington Capitals.

Tomorrow (Saturday), customers can get a free medium hot or iced coffee with any purchase, while there will be a chance to decorate some doughnuts too. On both days, a prize wheel offers discount vouchers for various menu offerings.

It is the 12th Dunkin’ Donuts in the county, after one opened in September in Virginia Square. And at around 8:30 a.m., business was already brisk at the store located at the intersection of Clarendon Blvd and N. Garfield Street, just a block from the Clarendon Metro station.

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