There are more than 80 historical markers scattered throughout Arlington County’s 26 square miles, but if you’re like many locals, you probably haven’t visited all of them.
A recently launched video series from Arlington Public Schools will let you learn about some of those sites without leaving your computer.
The program, hosted in part by APS Superintendent Dr. Pat Murphy, highlights 11 of the county’s most significant historic sites.
Since the series debuted earlier this summer, it’s already uncovered some interesting tidbits about the area, such as:
- An Arlington resident’s medical research led to a breakthrough in blood transfusions.
- A community campaign turned an old school into a museum.
- The first flight of an aircraft on a military installation happened at an Arlington fort.
- The first federal building constructed in the county was a post office in Clarendon.
- Arlington once had a community for newly freed slaves.
- There used to be three massive radio towers in Arlington that were, at the time, the second-tallest manmade structures in the world.
- The county’s first fire company consisted of 10 leather buckets, a ladder and some volunteers.
- Chain Bridge got its name from a chain suspension bridge built over the Potomac River in 1808.
And there’s more history on the way. Next up, the series will tackle historical sites such as the Necostin Indian Site at the Roosevelt Island Parking Lot, Stratford Junior High School (which currently houses the H-B Woodlawn secondary program) and the Reevesland farmhouse.
Screenshot via Arlington Historical Markers video
The new Nando’s Peri-Peri in Ballston will hold its grand opening celebration this coming Saturday, Sept. 17.
The restaurant, in the former Vapiano’s space at 4401 Wilson Blvd, is celebrating its opening with appearances by Washington Capitals players, media personalities and the Caps’ Red Rockers squad.
The new Nando’s will be open from 11 a.m.-9 p.m. Saturday and all opening day sales will be donated to the Capitals’ official charity, the Monumental Sports & Entertainment Foundation, according to a press release. The guest appearances will take place between noon and 7 p.m.
Among those expected to help flip chicken on the grills during the opening event, are:
- Radio personality Elliot Segal from “Elliot in the Morning”
- Left winger Andre Burakovsky
- Center Lars Eller
- Right winger Stanislav Galiev
- Defenseman Nate Schmidt
- Right winger Tom Wilson
- Capitals alumnus Paul Mulvey
- Red Rockers squad
- Caps announcer Wes Johnson
- CSN Mid-Atlantic’s Capitals analyst and Caps alumnus Craig Laughlin
- Capitals contributor Courtney Laughlin
“Nando’s is thrilled to partner with the Caps to Rock the Red in Ballston and support Monumental Sports & Entertainment Foundation,” said Nando’s U.S. CEO Burton Heiss. The Capitals practice facility, Kettler Capitals Iceplex, is located in Ballston.
From the press release:
Nando’s has built an intensely loyal following by providing fresh food in a relaxed atmosphere with friendly service. Nando’s is known worldwide for its succulent PERi-PERi chicken, marinated for 24 hours, flame-grilled to perfection, and basted to the customer’s preferred flavor and spice.
Every Nando’s is painstakingly designed and completely unique, with earthy textures and bright colors that reflect its sunny African-Portuguese heritage. With thousands of pieces of original works of art that are a constant reminder of where the restaurant came from, Nando’s has become the largest collector of South African contemporary art in the world. In the United States alone, there are more than 600 pieces of original African art in Nando’s restaurants.
The Apple Store in the Pentagon City mall has announced that it will be closing for renovations starting on Sunday, Sept. 25.
“We’re making the Apple Store you love even lovelier,” the announcement says.
Meanwhile, the Clarendon Apple Store remains closed due to renovations and no reopening date has been announced. The renovations may have been hampered by a large electrical fire at the Market Common Clarendon shopping center.
The new iPhone 7 launches this coming Friday, Sept. 16, leaving only 9 days to get one before the Pentagon City store shuts its doors. Other Apple Store locations in the D.C. area include Georgetown, Tysons Corner and Bethesda.
Update at 9:30 a.m. — A number of readers have said that they’ve received emails or had conversations with employees at other Apple stores indicating that the Clarendon store will reopen on or around Sept. 24. The store’s website and phone number still does not list an opening date, and no opening date was posted on the store’s exterior on Monday.
Popular Ballston bar Carpool has been sold to developer Penzance and is set to be replaced by a 22-story-apartment building.
The sale closed on Friday, said co-owner Mark Handwerger. The good news? Carpool is expected to remain open for a few more months.
“CarPool has leased back the property for a period of time, and the bar will remain open through at least the end of November,” Handwerger.
In August, groups that used Carpool as a gathering spot for things like football games and other regularly-scheduled social events were told that Carpool was likely to close within a few weeks.
At 30, she might not have been elected as the youngest County Board member ever — that distinction belongs to Paul Ferguson — but Cristol saw her election as an opportunity to engage a typically under-represented group in Arlington: those under the age of 35, who make up half of Arlington’s population.
“It seemed important to me to have that point of view represented in the mix,” she said.
Cristol is the first guest on ARLnow.com’s new podcast, 26 Square Miles, which you can subscribe to on iTunes, Google Play, Stitcher and some other major audio services. (Let us know, in the comments, if there are any we should add.)
Cristol discussed a number of issues that have faced the Board this year and that are on the Board’s agenda for this fall.
We asked about the so-called Blue Ribbon Panel that was proposed, debated, then ultimately scrapped — what was that all about? Cristol pointed out that it was an initiative of the County Board chair, Libby Garvey, and that the Board has typically given some leeway to the chairman to accomplish their set priorities.
“There’s generally been deference to the idea that when someone’s done their rotation, served their time and they get to be chair, they can push forward something they’re really interested in,” she said.
Cristol supported the panel because there was a need to get a handle on the “tremendous amount of planning documents in Arlington,” but added that “we got a lot of, very frankly, fair criticism about it.” If it were to be proposed again, she said, she wouldn’t necessarily support it.
On her and fellow County Board member Christian Dorsey’s support for striking workers at Arlington National Cemetery, she acknowledged that the Board “does not adjudicate labor disputes” but said that Board members do have a responsibility as leaders to support those who are struggling.
“I’m very proud to stand with workers who stand in the right in that particular dispute. We want people in our community to be treated with dignity,” she said.
On the topic of Fire Station No. 10 in Rosslyn, which is set to be torn down to make way for a development and a brand new fire station, Cristol said the decision on where to locate a temporary station has come down to two options, both of which are controversial: next to the future H-B Woodlawn or on Rhodeside Green Park.
“There are just no other options that meet the technical requirements and won’t affect response times,” Cristol said, calling it a “brutal decision.” The Board is expected to make a final decision this month.
On the loss of market rate affordable housing in Westover to new development, Cristol said even if the Board could legally stop the development, it would come with “unintended consequences.”
“I don’t think the most effective way is ever for the government to intervene in the market in such a dramatic way,” she said.
Nonetheless, the Board will be taking this fall about tools it can use to help preserve such affordable housing, perhaps with funding from the county’s Affordable Housing Investment Fund. The Board will have to weigh whether it’s worth spending more per unit to preserve affordable housing in a pricey neighborhood like Westover, when it’s less expensive to build new affordable housing along Columbia Pike.
Cristol also addressed:
- Housing affordability in general: With the entry level for a family buying a home in Arlington around $700,000-800,000, there needs to be “more rungs on the ladder.”
- Child care affordability: “Existential for Arlington [so] can we keep our young families here.”
- The debate over proposed new child care regulations: “One of the things that really lit my fire was the idea that it ought to be government’s job to encourage child care providers to then encourage mothers to breastfeed their children.”
- On the “underwhelming” transit plan for Columbia Pike: “I am impatient. I want us to be thinking big and I want us to be thinking quickly. We’re putting a lot of pressure on staff to do exactly that.”
The Pinkberry frozen yogurt shop in Clarendon has closed.
A worker was changing the locks at the store this afternoon, which is usually a sign that a business has been kicked out by its landlord. Later in the evening, the door handles could be seen chained together from the inside, and a letter from Arlington County was visible on the floor.
Over the past two years Pinkberry has closed for the off-season, only to quietly open up again when the weather started to warm up. It’s yet to be seen whether Pinkberry will rise again, the lone survivor of the once–vibrant Clarendon frozen yogurt scene, or whether it has finally closed for good.
The Harris Teeter at the Lee-Harrison shopping center is currently being remodeled.
The supermarket is adding a full-service wine bar, an expanded salad bar, a “cheese island” with hot pizza options, American and Asian hot bars, a breakfast bar and more.
Harris Teeter sent the following email to customers this week, discussing its plans for the store.
Dear Valued e-VIC Member,
Our records indicate that you shop at our Lee & Harrison location. We are currently in the process of ongoing renovations at this store, and we appreciate your continued patience as we work to bring new and exciting features to your Harris Teeter. While we understand that this transition presents some inconveniences, we wanted to take the time to familiarize you with what amenities we are adding to enhance your shopping experience.
In the upcoming months, expect to see a full service wine bar, an expanded seafood department, an extended salad bar, more LaBrea bread options, a more extensive cheese island with hot pizza, and American and Asian hot bars for you to enjoy. We appreciate your patience during this remodel, and as always, thank you for shopping at your Harris Teeter!
During the remodel, our hours of operation will be as follows:
Monday – Thursday: 7 am – 10 pm
Friday – Saturday: Open at 7 am Friday, then open 24 hours
Sunday: Close at 10 pm
If you have any questions or concerns about the remodel process, please visit the
Hat tip to Chris Slatt
The California Tortilla location in Crystal City location has closed.
The locally-based Mexican fast casual chain opened the location at 2450 Crystal Drive in 2012. It apparently closed this week.
A sign posted on the door reads: “California Tortilla is closing! We thank you for your patronage these past four years, and wish you the best of tacos in the years to come!”
An employee was removing the lettering with the restaurant’s hours from the door this afternoon.
Separately, the former Seattle’s Best Coffee location down the block is under construction. Permits displayed on the windows indicate that a Navy Federal Credit Union location will be moving in.
Hat tip to @34smiley
Bridges maintained by Arlington County are “generally in good shape.”
That’s according to Ramzi Awwad, the county’s Engineering Bureau Chief, in a county-produced “Street Beat” video segment (above).
Talking about bridge inspections that are currently underway in Arlington, Awwad said that routine inspections and maintenance help to keep overall infrastructure costs down.
“Our bridges are generally in good shape,” said Awwad. “Because that’s the case, we can focus on performing minor repairs before they become major problems. As bridge condition deteriorates further and further, the cost to make the repairs increases exponentially, so we want to make sure we get ahead of everything while we still can.”
Originally founded as a food truck, Pupatella opened its current Bluemont location, at 5104 Wilson Blvd, in 2010. Co-owner Enzo Algarme is now teaming up with the partners behind Elevation Burger to expand via franchising.
“After a decade of perfecting their craft, the owners have joined forces with two of the founding partners of Elevation Burger to begin offering franchises,” said a PR rep.
Additional Pupatella locations may be in store for the D.C. area, according to a press release. Other potential expansion locations, should franchise owners sign on, include Philadelphia, Richmond, Virginia Beach, Raleigh-Durham, Chapel Hill, Wilmington and as far away as the Middle East.
The full press release from Pupatella is below.
Started as a food truck in 2007, today Pupatella is a favorite Neapolitan Pizzeria among Northern Virginians, winning loyal fans with its classic artisan Neapolitan pizza. Due to high demand, Pupatalla has decided to expand through corporate development and franchise opportunities. To accomplish this, Enzo Algarme, Pupatella’s founder and owner, has joined forces with founding partners of Elevation Burger who grew the country’s first organic burger chain from one to more than 50 restaurants worldwide. Pupatella is now seeking entrepreneurs and franchisees that have a passion for classic, artisan pizza to help grow the brand.
Born and raised in Naples, Italy, Algarme takes tremendous pride in Pupatella’s “back to the basics” philosophy. The restaurant proudly possesses aVPN certification, a designation given to qualifying pizzerias by the Naples-based Associazione Verace Pizza Napoletana. To obtain the VPN certification, the pizza is made according to the 200-year-old Neapolitan technique. Only wood-fired ovens are permitted; the dough is made of only four ingredients: 00 Italian flour, sea salt, fresh yeast and water. The toppings for the D.O.C. (Denominazione di Origine Controllata) pizza may only include sauce made of San Marzano tomatoes grown in Italy, fresh cherry tomatoes, fresh mozzarella made with buffalo milk or fior di latte, sea salt, fresh basil and olive oil.
“I came to the U.S. for college and the one thing I missed the most was classic Neapolitan pizza that you could find on every corner in Naples,” said Algarme. “Cooking was a huge part of my upbringing in Italy and I felt a calling to start a business that was true to my roots. We’ve experienced tremendous success, with lines out the door everyday, and I feel confident that our pizza will be embraced around the world as we move forward with our expansion plans.”
Pupatella is consistently named as one of the country’s best pizzerias by media and has received accolades by Business Insider and Washington Post. Its current location has experienced solid growth and high profit, totaling nearly 2.5 million dollars in gross sales in 2015. Pupatella has a top rating from more than 1,200 reviewers on Yelp. In addition to its classic artisan food, Pupatella is also known for it’s fast and affordable format. From a family outing to a romantic date night, guests appreciate Pupatella’s commitment to simple, true Neapolitan pizza served in a casual atmosphere where all are welcome.
Pupatella is now seeking entrepreneurs to help expand the pizzeria in key markets across the United States and Middle East. The ideal franchise partner has restaurant experience and a passion for executing a proven system. Specific areas for U.S. expansion include Washington D.C Metro, Philadelphia Metro, Richmond, VA, Virginia Beach, VA, Raleigh-Durham, NC, Chapel Hill, NC, Newark, DE, and Wilmington, DE. Franchise opportunities are also available in the Middle East.
To learn more about franchise opportunities, visit pupatellafranchise.com to submit an online application or call 703.825.6334.
A Stone Hot Pizza is coming to Arlington’s bustling Clarendon neighborhood, according to a construction permit application.
The eatery will be located on the ground floor of the Beacon at Clarendon apartments (1200 N. Irving Street). That’s according to the permit application, which was filed on Thursday, Sept. 1.
The small Northern Virginia pizza chain has three existing locations, in Alexandria, Falls Church and Fairfax. Its menu includes specialty pizzas, calzones, sandwiches, pastas, salads, wings, meat pies and various appetizers and desserts.
Hat tip to Chris Slatt
As it turns out, Il Forno was ill fated.
The upscale Italian restaurant at 900 N. Glebe Road in Ballston closed last week after about three and a half years in business.
Paper now covers the restaurant’s windows, which is usually an indication that construction is taking place inside and another business is on the way. However, no construction permit applications have been filed, based on a check of the county’s permit system Tuesday afternoon.
In April, ARLnow.com reported that Il Forno was listed for sale on a business broker website. The listing noted that the restaurant was “investor owned” but in need of an “operator-owner.”
Il Forno was located next to the recently-opened Applebee’s.
An animal control officer found the raccoon, oddly, in a cardboard box with a water bowl.
The Animal Welfare League of Arlington is asking those who may have had contact with the animal — or those whose pets may have had contact with it — to contact them.
From the AWLA:
The Animal Welfare League of Arlington seeks information about any people or pets who may have had physical exposure to a raccoon that has tested positive for rabies. An animal control officer found a sick raccoon in a cardboard box left on the street in the 1000 block of North Manchester Street on August 23, 2016. The box also contained a plastic bowl of water. The raccoon was brought to the animal shelter where it was humanely euthanized. When it was sent for testing, the raccoon was positive for rabies. We ask that anyone who may have had contact or whose pets may have had contact with any raccoon in that vicinity, please call the League at 703-931-9241.
A Michael’s craft store is set to open tomorrow (Sept. 2) near Arlington’s Fairlington neighborhood.
As of this afternoon, “opening” signs were posted on the window of the store and employees could be seen training inside.
The new Michael’s is located in the Bradlee Shopping Center at 3690 King Street in Alexandria.
Clarendon is getting a new upscale spot for men to get their hair cut and their beards trimmed.
Hendricks Gentlemen’s Barbershop, which is billing itself as Clarendon’s only high-end barbershop, is planning to open in just over a week.
Hendricks is the creation of Melanie St. Clair and Lisa Dahl, owners of Smitten salon in nearby Lyon Park.
“At Smitten we have a large male clientele so we know a barbershop is something Clarendon needs,” St. Clair tells ARLnow.com. “Hendricks… will offer men’s haircuts, beard trims and hot [straight razor] shaves. The concept is a throwback to old school barbershops, in a comfortable upscale setting.”
“Hendricks boasts a wall projector screen with ESPN as well as an original 100 year old barbershop chair from my great great grandfather’s barbershop in Baltimore,” St. Clair added. “We have experienced barbers on staff and will be opening Wednesday, September 7. Once the website is live this week, clients will have the convenience of online booking.”
Hendricks is located at 3000 Washington Blvd, near the 7-Eleven store, in the former Primp by Smitten space. Primp has since relocated to the main Smitten salon on N. Pershing Drive.
Photo courtesy Tim Donaldson