County Board Stalls on VRE Decision — The Arlington County Board, at a Tuesday meeting that stretched into early Wednesday morning, declined to endorse one of the options for a proposed new Virginia Railway Express station in Crystal City. VRE officials, county staff, the Arlington Chamber of Commerce and Arlington’s Transportation Commission backed Option 2, which places the station closer to the Crystal City Metro station and transit center. Some local condominium residents and the Planning Commission, citing concerns about noise, wanted Option 3 — which places the station behind an office building — to be considered as well. [InsideNova, InsideNova]
Michelle Obama Stops By Arlington for Salon Opening — Former first lady Michelle Obama and her Secret Service entourage were among “a crowd of about 40 VIPs” who came to Arlington Tuesday night for the opening of a new salon. The business, Aesthetics Salon, is owned by stylist Yene Damtew, who was part of Obama’s “glam squad” while she was in the White House. Aesthetics Salon is located at 2412 26th Road S. in the Long Branch Creek neighborhood just south of I-395. [Washington Post]
Clarendon Day Closures — Expect lots of road closures in central Clarendon on Saturday for the annual Clarendon Day festival, which is taking place from 11 a.m.-6 p.m. On Sunday morning Wilson Blvd will be closed from Clarendon to Rosslyn for the Clarendon Day 5K, 10K and Kids Dash races. [Arlington County, Arlington County]
More on Proposed Columbia Pike Bus Revamp — “Recently Metro unveiled the latest proposed changes to the Metrobus network which includes a major restructuring to the 16 series bus lines on Columbia Pike in Arlington. The long-awaited restructuring is aimed at simplifying and improving bus service in the corridor.” [Greater Greater Washington]
County Seeking Pike Bus Feedback — While WMATA continues to collect feedback on the proposed Columbia Pike bus changes via an online survey, a public meeting is scheduled tonight (Thursday) to discuss the changes in person with residents. The meeting is taking place at the Arlington Mill Community Center from 6-8 p.m. [Arlington County]
Local Nonprofit Lender Steps Up Loan Volume — “Arlington-based Capital Impact Partners said Wednesday it provided $75 million in private financing in the second quarter of 2017, the largest quarterly loan volume in its history. The nonprofit community development financial institution backs projects that support increased access to health care, education, affordable housing and healthy food in the United States.” [Washington Business Journal]
Flickr pool photo by Alan Kotok
Clarendon Day, one of Arlington’s biggest street festivals, is set to return next weekend.
The day-long event is scheduled for Saturday, September 23 from 11 a.m. to 6 p.m., centered around the Clarendon Metro station at Clarendon Blvd and N. Highland Street. Organizers said they expect 30,000 visitors if the weather is good.
It will feature several live music stages, a play area for children, arts and crafts vendors and exhibitors from local businesses and nonprofits. Local restaurants will also provide food, with local craft beers and wines also available.
“Clarendon Day is one of Arlington’s best loved and most diverse street festival, with several music stages, a large Kid’s Area, Arts and Crafts vendors, Business and Nonprofit Exhibitors from Clarendon and the region, plenty of great food from local and regional restaurants, Craft beers and Virginia wines, and more,” the event’s website reads.
The traditional International Chili Society Chili Cookoff will also return, with winners qualifying to advance to the World Championship Chili Cookoff next month. Entrants must be ICS members, and can compete in four categories: Red, Chili Verde, Salsa and Homestyle.
Organizers have made some changes for this year’s festival, which is now more than 30 years old. This year, the traditional Clarendon Day 5K and 10K race will be held the following day, Sunday, September 24, starting at 8 a.m.
The course takes runners east along Wilson Blvd and south past Arlington National Cemetery, before runners turn back and finish in Rosslyn.
“This change creates an opportunity for the CA to examine the event layout and logistics,” Clarendon Day organizers wrote.
Those in the area can expect significant street closures all day Saturday. Organizers recommended biking, walking or taking Metro to the festival.
Tourism Spending Record in Arlington — Visitors to Arlington spent about $3.1 billion in 2015, a new record. That’s up 3 percent compared to 2014. The tourism spending generated $86 million in county tax revenue and $115 million in state tax revenue. [Arlington County]
New ART 92 Schedule Starts Today — A more frequent ART 92 bus schedule starts today, with buses running every 15 minutes during peak times. ART 92 runs from Crystal City to Long Bridge Park to the Pentagon. [Arlington Transit]
Cesar Millan in Crystal City — ‘Dog Whisperer’ star Cesar Millan was spotted walking the streets of Crystal City on Sunday. Millan was in town filming a new show, Cesar Millan’s Dog Nation, which will air on the Nat Geo Wild channel. [Patch, Twitter]
Arlington ’40 Under 40′ Honorees — The Leadership Center for Excellence has announced this year’s Arlington “40 Under 40” honorees. The 40 Under 40 luncheon will be held Dec. 2. [InsideNova]
Photos from Weekend Events — Pleasant late-summer temperatures helped drive big turnouts at Clarendon Day and Pups and Pilsners this weekend. Meanwhile, ARLnow’s Fall Beer Mega Tasting Event at Arrowine drew a (relatively) big crowd as well.
Flickr pool photo by Angela Pan
The annual Clarendon Day street festival will take place a week earlier than usual this year.
Clarendon Day is now taking place on the third Saturday in September — Sept. 17 — from 11 a.m. to 6 p.m. That permanent change follows last year’s extension of the event hours by one hour.
This year’s event will include music, food and drink, vendors and a kids area, in addition to a 5K/10K race before the event.
“Clarendon Day is Arlington’s biggest street festival,” the event’s website says. “With four music stages, craft beer and wine, the Clarendon Chili Cookoff, scores of local restaurants, a great kids area, a terrific VIP tent, arts and crafts vendors, plus local businesses and nonprofits, this free event has something for everyone.”
Organizers say they’re expecting more than 30,000 attendees.
This year, however, runners will have to find their own way back to Clarendon following the race.
“Unlike in previous years we are unable to provide Metro cards back to the start line due to Safetrack work and change in WMATA policy for paper Metro cards,” the race’s website says. “Please consider walking or running back to the start (and stopping at Four Courts on the way!) or parking in Rosslyn or Courthouse (be mindful of parking restrictions).”
Clarendon Day is free to attend. Race registration starts at $40, while a separate “Kids Dash” is only $10.
Music and the smell of chili will fill the air around the Clarendon Metro station on Saturday, Sept. 26 for the 18th annual Clarendon Day.
There will be arts and crafts, food, beer, music and the annual chili cookoff, all on Clarendon and Wilson Blvds outside the Clarendon Metro station. The free festival will be open from 11 a.m. to 6 p.m., an hour longer than previous years.
“Slam Allen is not only pretty good, he is taking the blues world by storm having sat at No. 1 on the Roots Music Report Blues List for 16 straight weeks with top single and album,” said Anders Thueson with Songs, Writers and Poets, one of the festival’s sponsors.
Slam Allen will play until 6 p.m., but the other four stages, including one dedicated to dance performances, will close at 5 p.m., said Matt Hussmann, executive director of the Clarendon Alliance.
Members of the chili society will enter their best recipes for red chili, chili verde, salsa and homestyle chili in hopes of winning and moving on the the World Championship Chili Cookoff this October in Palm Springs, California. Proceeds from the cookoff will benefit Wounded Warriors, Hussman said.
Chefs will be giving samples of their chili, but there plenty of other food options from local restaurants, including Bowl’d, Circa at Clarendon, Fuego Cocina y Tequileria and Liberty Tavern, Hussman said. Top Chef contestant Mike Isabella will be selling food from his three Ballston restaurants — Kapnos Taverna, Pepita Cantina and Yona.
“We’re also bringing back several longtime specialty food vendors — evidently fried food is a hit at Clarendon Day,” said the event’s website.
In addition, there will be arts and crafts booths and a kids zone with rides, music, storytelling and face painting.
The Arlington County Police Department will close down Clarendon and Wilson Blvds from Washington Blvd and N. Highland Street starting at 5 a.m. for the festival. N. Highland will also be closed from 11th Street N. to the Views at Clarendon (1210 N. Highland Street).
Wilson Blvd will be closed from N. Highland to N. Lynn Streets from 5-9:15 a.m. for the annual Pacers-organized Clarendon Day 10K/5K/Kid’s Dash. The southbound lanes of Route 110 will also be closed from 8-10:30 a.m. for the race.
Clarendon’s biggest annual street festival, Clarendon Day, is back for its 17th iteration this Saturday, and with it comes the return of the D.C. Chili Cookoff.
This year’s festival goes from 11:00 a.m. to 5:00 p.m. on the streets outside the Clarendon Metro station, at the intersection of N. Highland Street and Wilson and Clarendon Blvds. There will be 40 bands and musicians playing on five stages throughout the day, headlined by singer-songwriter Amber Rubarth at 2:45 p.m. on the main stage.
While music will fill the air all afternoon long, so will the smell of chili. The chili cookoff, sponsored by the International Chili Society, will see dozens of homemade chili chefs cooking up batches of red chili, chili verde, salsa and homestyle recipes, all competing for the chance to participate in the World Championship Chili Cookoff this October in Palm Springs, Calif. Chefs will be providing tastings of their chili, and those hankering for something else will be able to choose from more than a dozen local restaurants’ tents.
Participants last year were disappointed by the long lines for beer, which often stretched dozens deep. This year, festival organizer Clarendon Alliance said “we have revised our event layout to allow for faster beverage service,” which includes two bars in different sections, with breweries participating in next month’s Courthouse Arts and Craft Beer Festival and wine.
Along Wilson Blvd, there will again be dozens of arts and crafts vendors and exhibitors, and by Clarendon Central Park there will be activity spaces for children. The festival itself is free to enter.
Roads in Clarendon will be closed all day Saturday to accommodate the festival. That includes starting at 5:00 a.m. on Wilson Blvd to N. Lynn Street to accommodate the annual Clarendon Day 5K/10K, which will also close southbound Route 110 from 8:00-10:00 a.m. Wilson and Clarendon Blvds will close from Washington Blvd to N. Highland Street until the evening, as will Highland Street from 11th Street N. to just before N. Hancock Street.
Flickr pool photo by J Sonder
Construction to Begin on Ballston Garage — Local developer The Shooshan Company says it is beginning construction on a 550-space parking garage at 4040 Wilson Blvd, site of a planned 20-story office building in Ballston. The building is the final component of Shooshan’s Liberty Center development. [Washington Business Journal]
Clarendon Day Date Set — The annual Clarendon Day street fair will be held on Saturday, Sept. 27, the Clarendon Alliance has announced. This year the event will add a bluegrass music stage next to the Clarendon Chili Cookoff. The layout is also being changed “to make it easier for people to find the cold beverages of their choice.” [Clarendon Alliance]
VDOT Warns of E-Z Pass Scam — VDOT says some Virginia E-Z Pass users have reported receiving emails demanding payment for a past due debt. The emails are a scam, the department says. It’s unclear how the scammer obtained the email addresses of E-Z Pass holders. [Reston Now]
New Arlington Book Released — “We Are Arlington,” a book featuring 180 pages of photos and history about Arlington and Arlington residents, is now on sale. The author is Bill Hamrock, co-owner of Pasha Cafe and Billy’s Cheesesteaks in Cherrydale. [Preservation Arlington]
Flickr pool photo by Kevin Wolf
The 16th annual Clarendon Day and the official D.C. Chili Cookoff are back for another year this Saturday.
From 11:00 a.m. to 5:00 p.m., visitors can partake in the street festival with food, beer and wine, local vendors and businesses.
The highlight of the festival figures to be the D.C. Chili Cookoff. Hard Times co-founder Jim Parker brought the cookoff to Clarendon after 33 years in D.C., most recently as the DC101 Chili Cookoff at RFK Stadium.
Judges will begin tasting the chili at 1:00 p.m., and those in attendance — once the judges have their fill — will be able to sample the chili for 25 cents apiece, with proceeds going to the Wounded Warrior Project. The winners of the cookoff, in the red chili, chili verde, salsa and homestyle categories, will go on to participate in the World’s Championship Chili Cookoff in October.
The event is free and open to the public, and will be put on rain or shine. From 5:00 a.m. to 7:00 p.m., Wilson Blvd and Clarendon Blvd will be closed from Washington Blvd to N. Garfield Street and N. Highland Street will be closed from N. Hartford Street to 11th Street. Parking will be restricted, so those planning to drive should be aware of the “No Parking” signs posted in the area.
Disclosure: Clarendon Alliance is an ARLnow.com advertiser
The 16th annual Clarendon Day festival, in September, will include a new addition: the official D.C. Chili Cookoff.
The cookoff is moving to Clarendon after its usual venue, the DC101 Chili Cookoff at RFK Stadium, apparently didn’t include an actual chili competition this past May. The event will now be sponsored by Hard Times Cafe.
“We wanted to carry on the D.C. Chili tradition since we’ve been involved with it for the past 33 years,” said Hard Times co-founder Jim Parker. “The cookoff is sanctioned by the International Chili Society (ICS) and we expect to host competition chili cooks from all over the East Coast.”
Parker said past chili cookoffs have consisted of about 30 cooking teams competing in three categories: red chili, chili verde and salsa. This year, however, a new category, called “homestyle,” will be added.
“This category is more like the chili your mother used to make,” Parker said.
The teams will set up on the morning of Clarendon Day and cook chili on site. A panel of judges will start tasting the chili around 1:00 p.m., and the winners will be announced around 5:00 p.m. The winners will be the final qualifiers for the World’s Championship Chili Cookoff in California in October.
“Once the chilies (and salsa) are turned in to the judges the general public may taste and vote for the chili or salsa they like the best — as long as it lasts,” said Parker.
Clarendon Day will take place from 11:00 a.m. to 5:00 p.m. on Saturday, Sept. 28, in the area around the Clarendon Metro station. In addition to chili, the event will feature live music; food from local restaurants; beer, wine and other beverages; arts and crafts exhibitors; kids’ activities; and booths manned by local businesses and organizations.
Matt Hussmann, Executive Director of the Clarendon Alliance, which organizes Clarendon Day, says the chili cookoff will be a welcome addition to the day’s festivities.
“We’re very excited about having the D.C. Chili Cookoff,” said Matt Hussmann. “We’re hoping for a great event.”
Whereas the DC101 Chili Cookoff was a music-centric event, Hussmann said that cookoff organizers were looking for a new venue that will allow the chili to stand on its own.
“They really wanted to re-calibrate what they’re doing,” he said. “They wanted to focus on the chili and on family-friendly events. We’re pretty happy about it.”
Hussmann said other Clarendon Day details, like the live music lineup, are still being worked out. One notable subtraction this year: the Virginia Hospital Center Foundation “Family Fun Day” attractions that have been featured in previous years.
Clarendon Day Draws a Crowd — Thousands enjoyed “picture perfect” weather at the annual 15th Clarendon Day street festival and 10K/5K race (photo, above) on Saturday. [Patch]
Victories for Yorktown, DJO, W-L — In local football action over the weekend, Yorktown defeated Hayfield 17-10 and Bishop O’Connell defeated Carroll 38-7 over the weekend. Both teams are now undefeated with a record of 4-0. Washington-Lee is now 2-2 after beating Mount Vernon 41-20. Wakefield is 0-4 after losing another lopsided game. The Warriors fell to Freedom South Riding 55-6.
Free Coffee at McDonald’s — McDonald’s restaurants are giving away free small cups of coffee through Saturday. The restaurant is offering the one free cup of coffee per person per visit.
Flickr pool photo by Wolfkann
A number of streets will be closed tomorrow (Saturday) for the annual Clarendon Day festival and race.
The Clarendon Day 10K, 5K and Kids Dash races will take place between 8:00 and 10:30 a.m. During that time, drivers should expect closures along Wilson Boulevard from N. Fillmore Street in Clarendon to Route 110 in Rosslyn. Parts of northbound Route 110 and N. Kent Street will also be closed.
A large central section of Clarendon will be off-limits to motorists for most of the day for the festival — which includes live music, entertainment, arts and craft, food and beer. Closures will be in place from 5:00 a.m. to 7:00 p.m. along the following streets:
- Wilson Blvd from Washington Blvd to N. Garfield Street
- Clarendon Blvd from Washington Blvd to N. Garfield Street
- N. Highland Street between N. 11th Street and N. Hartford Street
Street parking along the race routes and around the festival area will be restricted, and police are expected to tow cars that are still parked in the temporary no parking zone Saturday morning.
Disclosure: Clarendon Day is an ARLnow.com advertiser
Clarendon Day will run from 11:00 a.m.-5:30 p.m. on September 22, near the Clarendon Metro. Admission is free to attend the event, which will take place rain or shine.
The morning begins with the fourth annual 10K/5K/Kids Dash, which begins in front of Whitlow’s on Wilson (Kids Dash in front of Market Common) and takes runners on a course along the Orange Line corridor. Registration can be completed online.
This is the first year the event will include the “Clarendon Alliance Battle of the Bands.” The music lineup hasn’t yet been announced, but should be listed on the event website as the day grows near.
There will also be more activities for kids this year. From face painting to jugglers to climbing activities, the little ones should have plenty to keep them occupied.
More than a dozen local restaurants will serve up food and drinks, including Delhi Club, Lyon Hall, Northside Social, Pete’s New Haven Style Apizza and District Taco. Dozens of other exhibitors will be set up to satisfy attendees’ shopping cravings.
There will be a number of street closures for Clarendon Day. Clarendon Blvd and Wilson Blvd will be closed between Washington Blvd and Highland Street by 5:00 a.m. Wilson Blvd between Highland Street and Lynn Street will be closed from 8:00–9:30 a.m. to accommodate the race. Route 110 southbound will be closed from 8:00–10:30 a.m. Additional closures may be announced as the event approaches.
Live music. Dancing. Food. Exhibitors. Kid’s activities. Arts and Crafts. A skateboarding demonstration.
Clarendon Day has a little something for everyone. The annual street fair, held on several streets in the heart of Clarendon, went off without a hitch on Saturday.
Though cloudy, the afternoon was mercifully rain-free, which helped to boost attendance. See the rest of our photos from the event, after the jump.
While this weekend’s IMF/World Bank meetings tie up traffic in the District, Arlington will be dealing with its own series of significant road closures on Saturday and Sunday.
5:00 a.m. to 8:00 p.m.:
- Wilson Blvd and Clarendon Blvd between Washington Blvd and N. Garfield Street
- N. Highland Street and N. Hartford Street at Wilson Blvd
- N. Herndon Street at Wilson Blvd
- N. Hudson Street at Wilson Blvd
- N. Highland Street at Washington Blvd
6:00 to 10:00 a.m.:
- Kent Street between N. 19th Street and Wilson Blvd
- Northbound Route 110 between Rosslyn and Route 1 in Crystal City
8:00 to 10:00 a.m.:
- Wilson Blvd from Arlington Ridge Road to N. Highland Street
On Sunday, the following streets will be closed for the Navy 5 Miler race.
6:00 to 10:00 a.m.:
- Northbound I-395 Exit 8B to Washington Blvd will be closed
- Washington Blvd between I-395 and the George Washington Parkway
- Southgate Road between Columbia Pike and S. Oak Street
- Columbia Pike east of S Joyce Street
- Access to Boundary Drive from I-395 (Exits 9 and 10A)