Man Struck by Car in Clarendon Runs Race — Michael Sizemore, 28, is making a remarkable recovery after being struck by a car in Clarendon and nearly dying this past fall. Sizemore, who suffered a fractured skull and two broken legs in the accident, among other injuries, ran a 5K race in Martinsville, Va., near his hometown of Collinsville, this past Saturday. Sizemore’s father, girlfriend, friends and other families were on hand to cheer him on. [Martinsville Bulletin, Facebook]
Residents Speak Out at Tax Rate Hearing — It was a much shorter affair than Tuesday’s nearly four hour public budget hearing, but a public hearing on Arlington County’s proposed tax rate drew a small crowd of activists Thursday night. Those advocating for more affordable housing and social services asked the County Board to raise taxes up to the legal maximum of 5 cents, while budget hawks asked for no tax increase or, at minimum, following the County Manager’s recommendation for a 3.2 cent tax increase. [Sun Gazette]
County to Hold Student ‘ART’ Contest — The county is challenging budding middle school and high school artists in Arlington to design a pedestrian safety-themed “wrap” for buses. The winning entry will be used to wrap one ART bus. The submission deadline is June 3. [Arlington County]
What if there were a site where you could post online reviews for a variety of local government services, similar to review websites like TripAdvisor and Yelp? That’s the concept a local man hopes will become a million dollar idea.
District resident Josh Glasstetter entered his idea for a website called “Civicly” into the Knight Foundation’s “Knight News Challenge.” This year’s competition offers winners a share of $5 million in funding for entries that best promote open government and present ways to improve interaction between citizens and governments.
Civicly would allow residents to leave reviews for government agencies and services such as the DMV, police, utilities, transportation and public schools. There would be opportunities to leave feedback for both specific and larger scale entities. For example, users could write a review about WMATA in general, just Metrorail, or could review a specific Metro stop.
“The idea is to take something that people are familiar with, such as online reviews, and take into new area like government and the public sector,” Glasstetter said.
Although the concept of giving feedback to government entities isn’t unique in and of itself, the innovation comes through with the idea of allowing the public to see every piece of feedback that’s submitted.
Glasstetter, who works for an advocacy group in the District, said he’s focusing first on D.C., Arlington and Alexandria as pilot areas for launching Civicly. Eventually, it would branch out to other parts of the country.
“Arlington is really a perfect place to try something out like this because of the demographics. I think people would naturally take to it. Folks in Arlington and D.C. are already so accustomed to using these kind of tools,” Glassteetter said. “I think this is the right kind of population to launch this.”
With more than 830 News Challenge submissions, Glasstetter acknowledges the odds of winning are slim, but he remains hopeful.
“There’s no way around it, the odds are very steep,” he said. “But my hope is that regardless of what happens for Civicly in the News Challenge, the idea has been seen by a lot of people. Hopefully that by getting this started and putting ourselves into this contest, we’ll be able to take the proposal and discuss it with foundations and other potential supporters.”
Viewers can give feedback on the proposals through Friday (March 29). Semi-finalists should be announced within the next week and will have the opportunity to further refine their proposals, as well as to submit a funding request ranging from $1,000 to $1,000,000. Winners will be notified when judging ends in June.
Ben Jenks, a Washington-Lee High School junior, designed the decal based on this year’s decal competition theme of “USS Arlington.” The theme was chosen to highlight the ship bearing the county’s name that will be commissioned this spring. The USS Arlington is named to honor those who lost their lives at the Pentagon on 9/11 and the first responders who risked their lives.
“I think this decal will be a fine inspiration to the sailors and Marines that will be onboard our ship, the USS Arlington,” said Treasurer Frank O’Leary. “It will also be a fitting tribute to those who died and those who served so heroically on 9/11.”
Jenks’ design was chosen through a county-wide vote after the field of competitors was narrowed from 23 entries to four finalists. The other finalists were Wakefield High School junior Kira Tucker, Wakefield High School junior Isabel George and Washington-Lee High School junior Ben Tobin.
The Treasurer’s Office began the design competition for high school students in 2005. This year, 2,080 votes were cast online and by mail.
Each week, we’ll pick a new “Arlington Pet of the Week.” From dogs, cats, birds, fish and everything in between, the feature will include photos and an explanation of what makes that week’s pet so special. The owner of each Pet of the Week will receive a gift card to a local pet store, in addition to the recognition of just how awesome his or her pet is.
If you think your little guy should be a contender for Arlington Pet of the Week, email one or more photos of and a 2-3 paragraph write-up about your pet to [email protected]. Please also include your name and the neighborhood you live in. All material sent to ARLnow.com may be used for publication.
For the first time, the 2013-2014 decal contest included a theme. Entrants — the contest is open to Arlington high school students — were told to include a photo of the new USS Arlington in their design. They were also given the option of choosing a background color for the first time.
Arlington residents can vote for their favorite of the four designs via the Arlington County Treasurer website. Voting will close on Thursday, Jan. 24, 2013, and the winner will be announced at the Jan. 29 Arlington County Board meeting.
The winning design will appear on over 155,000 windshields.
Home Sales Up, Prices Down — October home sales in Arlington were up 45 percent by volume, year over year, but prices were down. The average home price decreased to $542,941 from $562,217 in October 2011, which was partially attributed to a larger proportion of rowhouse and townhouse sales in relation to detached single-family homes. [Sun Gazette]
‘Incredible Edible Book Contest’ — On Dec. 1, the Cherrydale Branch Library will hold an “Incredible Edible Book Contest.” Contestants will create something edible to represent a book title, scoring points for cleverness and originality. The entries will be judged by a panel that will include Justin Stegall of Bakeshop and David Guas of Bayou Bakery. [Arlington Public Library]
Arlington Teacher on Date Lab — Jose Fuentes — a teacher at Key Elementary School, we’re told — was set up on a date as part of the Washington Post’s weekly Date Lab feature. Unfortunately, his date was “not really a Clarendon person” and the dinner at Eventide did not lead to a second date. [Washington Post]
Flickr pool photo by Maryva2
All designs for the 2013-2014 decal must feature an image of the USS Arlington, a new Navy ship named after the county in commemoration of the 9/11 attack on the Pentagon. The ship will be commissioned in Hampton Roads, Va. this coming spring.
Four decal design finalists will be announced on Thursday, Dec. 13. The winning decal (chosen by popular vote) will be announced on Jan. 22, 2013. The new decals will be distributed next summer, to be displayed on the windshield of more than 155,000 vehicles in Arlington.
Mystery Surrounds Eden Center Shooting — Questions still surround the murder and suicide that occurred at the Eden Center in Falls Church on Saturday night. The victim, meanwhile, has been identified as 51-year-old Tai Phan, of Annandale, who at the time of the shooting was on his way to a gig as a bass player at a restaurant. [Washington Post]
Board May Drop Retail Requirement for Condo Complex — The Arlington County Board is poised to reverse a requirement it set 9 years ago for the Woodbury Park condo complex to reserve interior space for a convenience store. The store would have been located inside the 364-unit complex, with no outside signage and no easy access for non-residents. Nobody has stepped up to rent the space, so county staff is recommending the Board drop the retail requirement and allow Woodbury Park to build a condo unit in its place. [Sun Gazette]
Library, Bayou Hold Instagram Photo Contests — Arlington Public Library and Bayou Bakery restaurant (1515 N. Courthouse Road) are both holding photo contests aimed at smartphone users. Entrants to both contests are encouraged to enhance — and, in the case of Bayou, submit — their photos via Instagram, the photo sharing and special effect service recently acquired by Facebook. The library’s contest is entitled the “Steve Jobs Memorial Juried Cell Phone Photo Show,” while the Bayou contest is called “Bayou by You.” [Arlington Public Library, Bayou Bakery]
Flickr pool photo by Ddimick
The Animal Welfare League of Arlington (AWLA) has entered a wacky video into a virtual dog show contest.
The Best in Shelter contest highlights dogs that have had a hard time being adopted. Four area shelters were chosen to participate, and must submit a video submission for each canine entrant. Visitors to the website vote for their favorite dog based on the video, photos and listed information.
In addition to fulfilling the goal of finding homes for the featured dogs, the shelter with the winning pooch will receive a $50,000 donation. The second and third place winners will receive $25,000 and $15,000, respectively.
Longtime D.C. area resident and New York Times bestselling author Martha Grimes started Best in Shelter last year to bring attention to animal shelters. She is providing the prize money.
“I’m happy that the four animal shelters participating in Best in Shelter will help demonstrate that shelter dogs are the equal to purebred dogs when it comes to looks, love, and loyalty and would be a happy addition to any family,” Grimes said. “We hope this will encourage people who have not considered adopting a pet from a shelter to visit their local shelter to look at the dogs.”
AWLA made the special video (above) for Gaston, a four-year-old American Bulldog mix, because he has been there for so long. Shelter officials hope the publicity from this contest might help to find Gaston a good home. AWLA’s other entrants are Molly, Pooh Bear and Rumor.
Voting takes place from now until 11:59 p.m. on Sunday, June 17. Anyone may vote, but there is a limit of one vote per day. Winners will be announced sometime next week.
ARLnow.com readers have spoken, and the photo above — “Morning Coffee at Iwo Jima” by Kevin Wolf — has been chosen as the best of the best in our pre-Memorial Day Summer Photo Contest.
The winning photo received 226 votes. “Fourth of July Fireworks from the Netherlands Carillon” by Clint Farrell was a close second with 210 votes, while our third place winner, “Douglas Park Fire Station” by Mary Troyan, received 183 votes.
Kevin, Clint and Mary will receive $100, $50 and $25 gift cards, respectively, to Fire Works Pizza in Courthouse (2350 Clarendon Blvd). Kevin will also receive a ARLnow.com tote bag. Thank you to Fire Works for sponsoring our contest and helping to give us give us some summer scenes to look forward to as we counted down the hours to Memorial Day weekend.
Here’s wishing you and yours a great holiday weekend, Arlington.
It was tough work but we’ve narrowed down the dozens of entries to our Summer Photo Contest to ten finalists who successfully captured a unique, visually-appealing summer scene in Arlington.
Fire Works Pizza in Courthouse (2350 Clarendon Blvd) is sponsoring the contest in celebration of their new outdoor canopy, which will help keep patio diners cooler when the sun’s beating down, warmer on cool evenings, and dry during summer downpours.
You can vote below for up to three of your favorite entries.
Voting will take place through 2:30 p.m. tomorrow (Friday, May 24). The finalist who receives the most votes will receive a $100 gift card to Fire Works Pizza along with an ARLnow.com tote bag. Second and third place will receive a $50 and $25 Fire Works gift card respectively.
Memorial Day is just around the corner. That means it’s time to break out the swimsuits, sandals, sunscreen — and the cameras.
In celebration of their new outdoor canopy — which will help keep patio diners cooler when the sun’s beating down, warmer (thanks to built-in heaters) on cool evenings, and dry during summer downpours — Fire Works Pizza in Courthouse (2350 Clarendon Blvd) is sponsoring a summer-themed photo conest.
We’re looking for your best summer snap from around Arlington. Maybe it’s your friends celebrating a patriotic holiday, neighbors out at a street festival, lightning from a summer thunderstorm, your pet trying to keep cool during the dog days of summer — anything that just screams “summer in Arlington.” (Since it’s not officially summer yet, it’s okay if the photo was taken in previous years.)
Email one photo in JPG format to [email protected] by 11:59 p.m. on Wednesday, May 23. Please include your name (which may be published) along with the best email address at which to contact you (which will not be published). ARLnow.com will pick 10 finalists and will let readers vote on their favorites this coming Thursday, May 24.
The finalist that receives the most votes will receive a $100 gift card to Fire Works along with an ARLnow.com tote bag. Second and third place will receive a $50 and $25 Fire Works gift card respectively.
The contest is open to U.S. residents 18 years of age and older. By submitting a photo to the contest you affirm that you took the photo, own the rights to the photo, and agree that ARLnow.com can use the photo for any and all contest-related purposes. Limit one entry per person.
Well, it seems that McLaughlin’s good luck in the roommate department didn’t end there. He recently proposed to his roommate — his girlfriend, Lisa — and the pair are now engaged.
McLaughlin said he spent the prize money ($10,000 plus free rent for a year) on an engagement ring.
“I was able to spring for a ring with the money I saved by winning the grand prize and not having to pay rent this past year,” McLaughlin said in a press release. “If there had been any question before, now I am definitely Roommate of the Year, at least in my fiancee’s eyes!”
Apartments.com is now seeking entries for its 2012 Roommate of the Year contest.
Arlington Valor Awards Held — The Arlington Chamber of Commerce held its annual Valor Awards presentation yesterday. More than a dozen personnel from the Arlington County Fire Department, Police Department, Sheriff’s Office and Office of Emergency Management received awards. The event was emceed by ABC7 morning news anchor Steve Chenevey. [Arlington Chamber of Commerce]
Sixteen Interested in School Board Seat — A total of 16 people have filed statements of interest for the School Board seat vacated by now-County Board member Libby Garvey. Among those seeking the nine month appointment are former state Senate candidate Jaime Areizaga-Soto. [Sun Gazette]
Yorktown Student Wins Optimist Essay Contest — Alina Kramer, a senior at Yorktown High School, has won the Capital/Virginia District Optimist Essay contest. Kramer will receive a $2,500 scholarship for her essay, which was based on the theme of “How My Positive Outlook Benefits the Community.” It was the first time in more than 10 years that a student from the Arlington Optimist Club won the essay contest.
New Car-Free Diet Show Episode — The fourth installment of Arlington County’s Car-Free Diet Show has been released. The episode features an interview with Chris Eatough, program manager for Bike Arlington and former professional mountain bike racer, as well as safety tips for avoiding being hit with car doors. [YouTube]
Rosslyn might not quite be Manhattan on the Potomac, but a loft-style condo that’s up for an award from HGTV does have a certain SoHo vibe to it.
A penthouse condo at Rosslyn’s Wooster and Mercer Lofts condo building (1600 Clarendon Blvd) is one of eight finalists for an HGTV “Doory Award” under the “Urban Homes” category. The two story, 1,111 square foot, 1 bedroom/1 bathroom condo features Brazilian cherry hardwood floors, 25 foot ceilings, a kitchen island, private roof deck, two walk-in closets and top-of-the-line stainless steel appliances like a Wolf gas range and a Sub Zero refrigerator. The building was built in 2007 and the condo is priced at $791,000.
The condo’s competition in the HGTV contest includes units from other trendy multifamily properties in big cities like San Francisco, Chicago, New York, Seattle — and New York City itself.
You can vote for Arlington’s hometown entry in the contest on the Doory Awards website.
Disclosure: John Eric, an ARLnow.com advertiser, is the listing agent for the condo.