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by Jackie Friedman — May 27, 2016 at 10:00 am 0

There’s a new donut offering at Sugar Shack Donuts (3400 Columbia Pike), and it’s definitely not vegan. The store is now offering not one but two varieties of Korean fried chicken donuts.

The spicy option has a Sriracha maple glaze with spicy chicken on the top. The milder option has a maple glaze with honey chicken on the top.

It’s a collaboration with another Arlington eatery. The chicken comes from Dak! Chicken, which is a Korean style chicken restaurant in Shirlington.

Yesterday was the first day that the donuts were served. Sugar Shack has been advertising the donuts throughout the week on its Twitter and Facebook pages.

“We have sold quite a few,” said Sugar Shack employee Andy Barry. “We’ve definitely had people come in just for the donuts.”

Just don’t expect the fried chicken donuts to be an everyday offering. The donuts will be served only on the last Thursday of every month.

by ARLnow.com — May 26, 2016 at 9:00 am 0

Morning Notes

Plane Makes Emergency Landing at DCA — An American Airlines flight taking off from Reagan National Airport had to turn around and make an emergency landing after a bird struck and disabled one of its engines. The incident happened around noon on Tuesday. No one was hurt. [NBC Washington]

That’s a Lot of Parking Tickets — Arlington County issued some 109,000 parking citations last year. The two most ticketed spots in the county: the county-owned surface parking lot in Courthouse and the county-owned parking strip next to Northside Social. [WJLA]

Vihstadt Pens Statement of Support for Garvey — County Board member John Vihstadt (I) writes of Board chair Libby Garvey, who’s facing a challenge in the Democratic primary: “While we don’t agree on everything, she continues to be my ally on key priorities like championing open, accessible and transparent County government, adequate schools funding, robust transit solutions on the Pike and elsewhere, and streamlining our business processes.” [Libby Garvey]

GGW Endorses Gutshall — Urbanist blog Greater Greater Washington has endorsed Erik Gutshall, who’s challenging County Board chair Libby Garvey in the June 14 Democratic primary. Writes GGW: “Overall, Gutshall has demonstrated a strong grasp of the challenges facing Arlington and an ability to work with others to find solutions. Libby Garvey, his opponent, has not demonstrated these qualities.” [Greater Greater Washington]

Paving on Columbia Pike — Crews are repaving the westbound lanes of Columbia Pike between S. Glebe Road and S. George Mason Drive, through Friday. [Twitter]

Raising Funds to Help Baby Hear — An Arlington resident has launched an online fundraiser to help pay for travel expenses and medical expenses associated with his baby daughter’s participation in a clinical trial that will help her hear via an auditory brainstem implant. [GoFundMe]

by Jackie Friedman — May 24, 2016 at 10:00 am 0

A new gym and wellness center that focuses on holistic approaches and family-friendliness has opened along Columbia Pike.

Located at 1058 S. Walter Reed Drive, in the former World Gym space, True Health and Wholeness had its grand opening on Saturday, May 14.

Husband-and-wife team Nina and Christian Elliot founded True Health and Wholeness to provide people with a “one stop shop” for all health and fitness needs. “Our goal is to provide a place where people can get true and sustainable answers to really change their lifestyle, said Nina Elliot.

True Health and Wholeness provides fitness, food, wellness and education services. Fitness services include personal training, small group training and large group workouts. Fitness classes such as barre and yoga are offered. Cooking classes and nutritional coaching are services that are provided to members.

Wellness services include: naturopathy, massage, acupuncture, cranial sacral, muscle activation techniques, infrared sauna, ionic foot soaks and food sensitivity testing. Education workshops are provided as well as lifestyle transformation coaching and corporate wellness programs.

“By giving people more access to different things in one place, it gives us a way to mix all those passions of our own health and wanting to have a family environment,” said Christian Elliot.

A unique part of the gym is that there are fitness programs geared toward children. The Kid Fit program allows for children to gain coordination and fitness skills. The program will be starting in the fall and are age based skill applied groups. Kid Summer Camp will be starting in July.  There is also an area called the “Little Nest” where children 6 weeks to 18 months old are cared for while a member exercises.

The gym also gives back to the community as much as they can. In honor of National Purple Heart Day on August 7, True Health and Wholeness will identify two combat wounded Purple Heart recipients and present a certificate for one year of free Pilates classes. The spouse of a wounded veteran may be substituted to receive this offer.

“This is a passion that also helps other people change their lives,” said Christian Elliot.

by ARLnow.com — May 19, 2016 at 12:55 pm 0

Did you miss our Hot Topics on the Pike event last month?

Good news: our friends at Arlington Independent Media were there and they just released their video from the event (above).

The first half is a discussion among our opinion columnists — Mark Kelly (The Right Note), Peter Rousselot (Peter’s Take) and Larry Roberts (Progressive Voice) — on countywide issues. (The opinion columns will return next week. This week we are publishing candidate essays from the contenders for the Democratic School Board endorsement.)

The second half was a discussion of Columbia Pike-specific issues with County Board member Katie Cristol, Arlington County Transportation Commission Chair Chris Slatt, Columbia Pike Revitalization Organization Chair John Murphy and small business owner Michael “Mike on the Pike” Garcia.

The event was held at the Celtic House Irish Pub (2500 Columbia Pike) and hosted by Amanda Fischer.

by ARLnow.com — May 19, 2016 at 11:30 am 0

Police cars outside of Department of Human Services (file photo)A man armed with a semi-automatic handgun robbed a store on Columbia Pike during yesterday’s evening rush hour.

The robbery happened around 5:20 p.m., according to police, at a dollar store-type retailer on the 5000 block of Columbia Pike.

“An unknown male subject brandished a firearm at an employee and demanded cash from the cash register,” according to the Arlington County Police crime report. “The suspect fled the scene on foot with an undisclosed amount of cash.”

The suspect is described as “a black male in his thirties, approximately 6’0″ tall and… 180 lbs.” He was wearing an orange long sleeve shirt, blue pants, a black mask and latex gloves, according to the crime report and scanner traffic.

by ARLnow.com — May 12, 2016 at 11:30 am 0

The existing Food Star on Columbia PikeMore than 1,800 people say they oppose replacing the Food Star supermarket on Columbia Pike with a new Harris Teeter store.

A Change.org petition called “Help Save the Food Star Supermarket” had 1,817 supporters as of 11 a.m. today.

The petition is a response to the redevelopment of the Food Star strip mall site, which was approved by the Arlington County Board in February. The shopping center is slated to be torn down and replaced by a six-story apartment building with 365 market-rate units and, on the ground floor, an array of retail locations including a 50,000 square foot Harris Teeter store.

The petition paints a picture of Harris Teeter as a “high end” grocery store and Food Star as an affordable, unique neighborhood institution that should be preserved.

I am very concerned that the Food Star grocery store is being targeted for demolition. A well-known business that has been at the same location since 1984, Food Star has become a cultural hub for residents in Arlington County.

  • It is centrally located (within walking distance of most of our residents) and caters to our culturally diverse population. Anywhere between fifteen – sixteen thousand residents (maybe even more) will purchase groceries from Food Star every month and even every week.
  • It serves as a place of employment. Thirty – forty residents that live in the area work there full-time.  The employees are friendly, helpful, and knowledgeable about the products that are being sold.
  • It serves as a “home away from home” for many of its patrons. Food Star sells unique products from all over the world that caters to many different multiethnic groups. Most of these products cannot be found at any other grocery stores.

While it is understandable that Harris Teeter is looking to expand into Alcova Heights area (at the corner of Columbia Pike and George Mason Drive), it seems like a very unnecessary business practice that is driven purely by profit and not by necessity. A cursory search on Google Maps indicates that there are at least 7 other high-end grocery stores located within a ten mile radius of the Food Star grocery store. However, if Food Star were to be torn down, most of the residents in the area would not be able to afford the costs associated with traveling to or shopping at these stores.

For the residents of Alcova Heights (Arlington) and other patrons from Virginia, Washington D.C. and Maryland, The Food Star grocery store is more than just a grocery store. It serves as a cultural icon, valuable resource, and a place of employment. I firmly believe that it should stay open. I am calling on Harris Teeter to reconsider adding a new location at Food Star’s current address, and to cease any actions related building a new store.

by ARLnow.com — April 25, 2016 at 12:35 pm 0

Police car (file photo)A delivery driver was arrested in the Ballston area Saturday morning and charged with assaulting police and a local residents.

The incident started around 6:45 a.m., when a resident on the 700 block of N. Tazewell Street started filming the driver and called police with a noise complaint, all as part of “an ongoing dispute [regarding] the time of deliveries.”

A verbal dispute between the resident and the driver ensued, leading the driver to punch the resident in the face, according to Arlington County Police spokeswoman Ashley Savage.

When police arrived, the driver was confrontational and struck at least one officer, Savage said. From and ACPD crime report:

ASSAULT ON POLICE, 160423017, 700 block of N. Tazewell Street. At approximately 6:48 a.m. on April 23, officers were dispatched to a noise complaint regarding an ongoing dispute between the time of deliveries. The victim was recording the incident when they were struck in the face by the subject. The subject became combative when officers arrived on scene but subsequently was taken into custody. Roderick Watt, 41, of Wilkes Barre Pa, was charged with assault on police (2 counts), obstruction of justice, and assault and battery. He was held on a secured bond.

A second incident of an assault on police happened later that night, in the Nauck neighborhood, according to the crime report.

ASSAULT ON POLICE, 160423049, 2400 block of S. 24th Road. At approximately 10:42 p.m. on April 23, officers conducted a traffic stop in regards to a suspended license. During the stop, the passenger became combative, pushed an officer to the ground, and fled on foot. Officers were able to apprehend Justin Murray, 31, of Alexandria VA. He was charged with assault on police, obstruction of justice, possession of marijuana(second offense), and failure to identify to law enforcement. He is being held without bond.

Also Saturday night, according to police, two drunk men were arrested after they both grabbed the buttocks of a woman and then started fighting. The incident started as all three were leaving an establishment near the intersection of Columbia Pike and S. Four Mile Run Drive.

The men were both charged with sexual battery and being drunk in public, according to the crime report.

SEXUAL BATTERY, 160423043, 4800 block of S. Columbia Pike. At approximately 9:40 p.m. on April 23, officers responded to the area for reports of two males fighting. When officers arrived on scene a female advised that her buttocks was grabbed by both suspects. . Carlos Rivas Martinez, 22, of Arlington VA, was charged with sexual battery and drunk in public. He was held on an unsecured bond. Lorenzo Rivas Martinez, 20, of Arlington VA, was charged with sexual battery and drunk in public. He was held on a secured bond.

by ARLnow.com — April 25, 2016 at 9:15 am 0

Pink carpet around tree (Flickr pool photo by Kevin Wolf)

Community Garden Fundraiser Fizzles — Arlington County’s attempt to crowdfund a community garden accessible to those with disabilities has not gone so well. As of Sunday the county has only raised $465 out of the $10,000 it sought, with only five days to go in the fundraiser. The failure raises questions about local government use of crowdfunding, the Post suggests. [Washington Post]

Meeting on Career Center Changes — Some major changes could be coming to the Arlington Career Center. Arlington Public Schools will be discussing that and other South Arlington school projects at a meeting Tuesday. The meeting is scheduled for 7 p.m. at the Career Center, at 816 S. Walter Reed Drive. [Taylor PTA]

More on Notable Tree Planted at Fire House — A Southern Magnolia tree planted outside Fire Station No. 4 in Clarendon was recognized as a “Notable Tree” last week. The tree was planted in 1965 in memory of ACFD Capt. Archie Hughes, who died while responding to a house fire at the age of 33. [NBC Washington]

New Movie’s Arlington Connection — A new indie flick, “Green Room,” follows the travails of a fictional Arlington-based punk band. The film was written and directed by Alexandria-born filmmaker Jeremy Saulnier. [DCist]

Spotluck Launches in Crystal City — Restaurant discovery and discount app Spotluck has launched in Crystal City. Participating restaurants include Crystal City Sports Pub, Kora and Kabob Palace. [Spotluck]

Arlington’s Diversity Highlighted — The world is learning about Arlington’s diversity. The Voice of America notes that Arlington is home to more than 130 ethnic groups, particularly around Columbia Pike. [VOA]

Flickr pool photo by Kevin Wolf

by ARLnow.com — April 22, 2016 at 8:45 am 0

Leaves in Glencarlyn Park (Flickr pool photo by Dennis Dimick)

County Announces ‘Energy Lending Library’ — Today, on Earth Day, Arlington County is formally announcing what it says is the nation’s first “energy lending library.” Via Arlington Public Library, residents will be able to borrow thermal imaging cameras, energy meters and books that will help residents identify areas of energy waste in their homes. [Arlington County]

Woman Arrested After Foot Chase in Pentagon City — A shoplifting suspect was taken into custody in Pentagon City after leading police on a foot chase yesterday, just before 6 p.m. Police were still searching for the woman’s shoplifting accomplice. [Twitter]

New Lubber Run Community Center Planned — Arlington County Manager Mark Schwartz has proposed a new, $45 million Lubber Run Community Center. The four-story structure would also include a parking garage, so that the existing surface lot can be converted to parkland. [InsideNova]

Arlington Hires Full-Time Ombudsman — Arlington County has a new ombudsman. Former Dept. of Human Services assistant director Robert Sharpe has been named to the county’s newly-created position of Director of Constituent Services. Sharpe’s job will be “troubleshooting issues on behalf of his fellow Arlington residents while working directly with departments, County leadership and the County Board.” [Arlington County]

Free ‘Pop Up Yoga’ Session on the Pike — On Sunday, from 11 a.m. to noon, a free “pop up” yoga class will be held at Penrose Square (2503 Columbia Pike). “Lisa Marie, local artist and certified yoga instructor, will lead the participants through postures, intentions and breath” that are specifically inspired by the pair of sculptures in the park. [With Love DC]

Medics on Motorcycles? — The citizen task force coming up with recommendations for Arlington’s Fire Station 8 has struck upon a novel idea: using motorcycle-based paramedics to get to patients faster in traffic than would a big, lumbering ambulance. Not every member of the task force, however, thought that was a good idea, citing potential issues with staffing. [InsideNova]

Flickr pool photo by Dennis Dimick

by ARLnow.com — April 21, 2016 at 1:05 pm 0

Three men have been arrested in a shooting on Columbia Pike last night, including the man who was shot.

The incident started just before 10:30 p.m., on the 3600 block of Columbia Pike near the Burger King, as “a dispute between several subjects and a business owner over the sale of a vehicle.”

As police responded to the dispute, they received a report that one of the suspects was making a shooting gesture at the business owner with his hand. Moments later came word that actual shots were being fired.

“One subject brandished a firearm and shot multiple rounds towards the victim who was sitting in [his] vehicle,” police said in a press release.

Following the shooting, the subjects fled the area in what was reported to be a gray Dodge Charger.

“Officers observed the subject’s vehicle and initiated a short pursuit on northbound I-395,” said the press release. The chase was called off after officers lost sight of the vehicle prior to the 14th Street Bridge. A U.S. Park Police helicopter attempted to assist with the search but the vehicle was not found.

Following up on unspecified information, a SWAT team arrested two of the suspects on the 2400 block of S. Lowell Street, in the Nauck neighborhood, early this morning. The third suspect, it turned out, was the man who was struck by gunfire in front of the Burger King. He has also been charged in the shooting.

Police are still asking any witnesses to come forward. The full press release, from ACPD:

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 their 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 two suspects into custody from a residence in the 2400 block of S. Lowell Street. Martin Walker, 25, of Largo MD, was arrested and charged with Felon in Possession of a Firearm, Attempted Malicious Shooting, Display of a Firearm during a Shooting, and Shooting at an Occupied Vehicle. Joseph Thompson, 26, of Manassas VA, was arrested and charged with Felon in Possession of a Firearm and Shooting by Mob.

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., 20, of Triangle VA, has been arrested and charged with Shooting by Mob. He is being held on no bond.

Anyone with information about this incident and/or who may have observed anything suspicious in the area is asked to contact Detective S. Roeseler of the Arlington County Police Department’s Homicide/Robbery Unit at 703-228-4182 or [email protected] Information may also be provided anonymously through the Arlington County Crime Solvers hotline at 1-866-411-TIPS (8477).

by ARLnow.com — April 20, 2016 at 10:35 pm 0

Update at 1:15 p.m. — Three suspects have been arrested in the case, including the man who was shot.

Arlington County Police are on scene of a shooting on Columbia Pike.

Numerous shots were fired near the intersection of Columbia Pike and S. Monroe Street. One man was shot in the leg and has been transported to Inova Fairfax Hospital with non-life-threatening injuries, according to Arlington County Police spokeswoman Ashley Savage.

A resident who lives across the street from the shooting said she hear about 10 gunshots and then came outside to see the victim on the ground in front of the Burger King, screaming.

Police were initially dispatched to the scene for a report of several men threatening the owner of an automotive business on S. Monroe Street, near the Burger King.

Three suspects fled the area in a gray Dodge Charger, according to scanner traffic. Police chased that car northbound on I-395, but the suspects were able to outrun officers, who lost sight of the car before entering the District.

Columbia Pike is closed between S. Glebe Road and S. Quincy Street while police investigate, document the scene and interview several witnesses.

Photo courtesy @_UrbunHippie

by ARLnow.com — April 20, 2016 at 4:55 pm 0

Arlington National Cemetery will brief Arlington residents next week on its plan to expand around the Air Force Memorial and realign the eastern end of Columbia Pike.

The “scoping meeting” is being held at the Sheraton hotel at 900 S. Orme Street from 5-9 p.m. on Wednesday, April 27.

The cemetery, which recently embarked on another expansion project, says it needs “additional space that is contiguous with the existing cemetery in order to maintain future operations beyond 2037.” It is planning a land swap with Arlington County and VDOT that will create burial space on either side of the Air Force Memorial, including on the former Navy Annex site.

“The cemetery has been working with the owners and operators of the adjacent road network, Arlington County and the Virginia Department of Transportation, to pursue a roadway realignment and land exchange agreement that will also support the short- and long-term multimodal transportation system for the Commonwealth of Virginia and Arlington County,” the cemetery said in a press release.

The U.S. Army Corps of Engineers is working on an environmental assessment ahead of the project.

“The Environmental Assessment will evaluate the proposal to increase the cemetery’s contiguous acreage, realign roadways, and maximize burial space by utilizing an area adjacent to the existing cemetery (formerly known as the Navy Annex site) located south of the existing cemetery,” said the press release.

The Corps of Engineers has set up a web page to provide information about the project. The event next week will allow residents “to learn more about and provide comments on the proposed project.”

A new 9/11 Pentagon Memorial Visitor Education Center is also planned in conjunction with the project.

by ARLnow.com — April 11, 2016 at 4:45 pm 0

Police car lightsA man was assaulted by a group of people on Columbia Pike early Friday morning after he got them kicked out of a restaurant, according to police.

The incident started around 8:40 p.m. Thursday as a dispute between two groups of people, inside a restaurant on the 2900 block of Columbia Pike, police said.

One member of a group was upset about being filmed by members of the other group and complained to restaurant management, which reportedly kicked the offending group out.

“Why they were filming or taking pictures inside the restaurant, that was not explained by the victim,” said Arlington County Police spokeswoman Ashley Savage.

The group that got kicked out apparently decided to hang out in order to exact some retribution. When the victim exited the restaurant around closing time, they assaulted him. The victim later transported himself to the hospital, where he was treated for minor abrasions.

The victim waited until Saturday evening to report the crime to police. From an ACPD crime report:

ASSAULT BY MOB, 160409035, 2900 block of S. Columbia Pike. At approximately 8:40 p.m. on April 7, following a dispute, a victim was assaulted by a number of offenders after he exited a restaurant. The victim was able to give suspect descriptions for two of the suspects. The first suspect is described as a black male in his teens, approximately 5’6″ tall with a slim build. He was wearing glasses and had braces. The second suspect is described as a black male in his twenties, approximately 5’6″ tall with a slim build. The investigation is ongoing.

On Saturday, a block away from the first incident on Columbia Pike, police investigated an alleged abduction and sexual assault.

Officers responded to the Days Inn motel at 3030 Columbia Pike around 10 p.m. Saturday for a report of a dispute. The dispute turned out to be between the victim’s family — she had called them for help — and the suspect.

Police say the victim and the suspect were acquaintances and had gone out for drinks before heading to the motel, where he held her against her will and assaulted her. From today’s crime report:

ABDUCTION WITH THE INTENT TO DEFILE, 160409051, 3000 block of Columbia Pike. At approximately 10:00 p.m. on April 9, police responded to a dispute in progress, upon investigation they determined the male subject used threats to hold the female victim against her will and assaulted her. Jorge Luis Velazquez Camacho, 34, of Wheaton Maryland, was arrested and charged with abduction with the intent to defile, object sexual penetration, strangulation, possession of cocaine with the intent to distribute, and assault and battery. He is being held without bond.

by ARLnow.com — April 7, 2016 at 2:10 pm 0

The Celtic HouseDevelopment, affordable housing, school crowding, Metro’s woes. Those are just a few of the local issues we’ll discuss during ARLnow Presents: Hot Topics on the Pike on Wednesday, April 27.

The event is taking place at Celtic House, at 2500 Columbia Pike, from 6:30 to 8 p.m.

(Feel free to take advantage of the $5 Wednesday wing special or stick around afterward for Celtic House’s weekly trivia night at 8:30.)

The first half of the event will be a debate among our opinion columnists — Mark Kelly (The Right Note), Peter Rousselot (Peter’s Take) and Lawrence Roberts (Progressive Voice) — on countywide issues.

Next up is a discussion of the future of Columbia Pike. It’s been more than a year since the cancellation of the streetcar, yet development has continued on the Pike seemingly unabated. So what does the future hold for the corridor? Among those joining us for the conversation are County Board member Katie Cristol and Arlington Transportation Committee Chair Chris Slatt.

Doorways for Women and Families logoRSVP is required — tickets are only $5 online.

April is Sexual Violence Awareness Month. All of ARLnow’s proceeds from the event will be donated Doorways for Women and Families, an Arlington-based nonprofit that creates pathways out of homelessness, domestic violence and sexual assault.

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