Trendy salad purveyor Sweetgreen will be opening the doors of its new Crystal City location (2200 Crystal Drive) this Thursday, Feb. 11.
The store will be open from 10:30 a.m. to 10 p.m., offering organic salads and seasonal bowls. During the grand opening, Sweetgreen will be donating 100 percent of the day’s proceeds to FRESHFARM Market’s Matching Dollars program.
Another popular and growing local fast casual restaurant chain, Taylor Gourmet, is expected to open next door later this winter.
Members of the Washington Capitals hockey team will gather in Arlington next month to help raise money for a local family whose youngest daughter, Emma, has been diagnosed with an inoperable brain tumor.
The fundraiser is scheduled for Friday, Feb. 19 at 5 p.m. at Don Tito (3165 Wilson Blvd).
Capitals players Karl Alzner, Nicklas Backstrom, Brooks Orpik and John Carlson will make an appearance to support the cause.
Tickets to the benefit are $75 each, and all proceeds will go directly to Emma and her family.
Emma is the three-year-old daughter of Jason Hensel and Teal Jones-Hensel. Approximately two months ago, Emma was diagnosed with Diffuse Intrinsic Pontine Glioma, or DIPG. It’s a rare, cancerous, inoperable brain tumor with a zero percent survival rate.
The February benefit was organized by John Carlson’s wife, Gina, who runs her own blog and uses it to raise money for her charity of choice, St. Jude’s Children’s Research Hospital. In a recent post, Carlson described knowing she “had to help” after she heard Emma’s story.
According to Carlson, Emma’s father has taken a leave of absence from work, so she organized the fundraiser at Don Tito with several ways for guests to help the family through the difficult financial time.
In addition to proceeds from ticket sales, proceeds from a raffle of Capitals memorabilia — including a jersey autographed by the team — a portion of all food and drink sales will be donated to the Hensel family.
Carlson also designed a t-shirt campaign, requiring all fundraiser guests purchase one online and either wear it or bring it to the event. The shirts start at $17.99, and proceeds from each one purchased will also go to the family.
Last week, Jones-Hensel used the t-shirt campaign page to publicly thank Carlson and those who have supported the fundraising effort so far.
“Thank you to each and everyone who has participated to help my family,” she wrote. “We are forever grateful.”
“Gina and her family have come together to give us an amazing gift, one that we plan to pass along someday,” she continued. “Emma’s little body is struggling to make it through the nightmare of radiation and treatments. Although her body is failing her, Emma’s spirit and smile light up my heart.”
Those interested in attending the fundraiser for Emma’s family can reserve tickets via e-mail and should do so soon, as Carlson expects the tickets to sell out.
Photo via Facebook/Loving Emma
Boards Cooperate on Stratford History — The Arlington County Board voted yesterday to collaborate with the School Board on a historic designation for the Stratford school, cutting the sometimes meddlesome Historic Affairs and Landmark Review Board out of the process to save time and money. Said County Board Chair Mary Hynes: “There is perhaps no building in Arlington more worthy of historic designation than Stratford — both for the seminal events that occurred there in 1959 and the unique architecture of the building.” [InsideNova, Arlington County]
Police: Inmate’s Death Due to Natural Causes — A 53-year-old man who died while being held at the Arlington County jail in October died of natural causes, according to Arlington County Police. Detectives determined that Edward Straughn had an “extensive history of medical issues.” He was originally arrested for being drunk in public. Straughn’s death was the second in-custody death for Arlington in 2015. [Arlington County]
Land Purchase Agreement With Hospital Approved — The Arlington County Board last night voted to approve an option agreement that would allow Virginia Hospital Center to buy 5.5 acres of county-owned property next to its campus for a minimum of $12.5 million. The eventual purchase may include cash and/or a land swap. [Arlington County]
Fundraiser for Local Dad Who Died Suddenly — Nathan Graham, the father of four young sons and a volunteer bishop at the LDS church in Crystal City, died unexpectedly while on a business trip to China. An online fundraiser to help support Graham’s family has raised more than $95,000. [YouCaring]
History Task Force Makes Final Recommendations — Arlington County’s History Task Force has presented its final recommendations to the County Board. The task force says Arlington should devote resources to better preserving Arlington’s history, including via the development of a unified digital archive. [Arlington County]
A 5K race is being held in North Arlington this weekend, in memory of an Arlington mom killed by a passing truck while placing her children in a minivan.
The Jennifer Bush-Lawson Memorial 5K Race will take place on Saturday, at 8 a.m. There will also be a children’s fun run featuring two of the Washington Nationals racing presidents, starting at 9:30 a.m.
A Family Fun Day will be held in conjunction with the races, at the Knight of Columbus (5115 Little Falls Road), from 8 a.m. to noon. The event will include “activities like face painting, air brush tattoos, balloon animals, photo booth, moon bounce, obstacle course, rock climbing wall, local food trucks, and even a beer garden.”
The fundraiser will help to fulfill Jennifer Lawson’s dream of helping mothers in need of medical care. Proceeds will benefit the Jennifer Bush-Lawson Memorial Foundation, which provides prenatal and postnatal health services for underprivileged mothers and babies at Virginia Hospital Center and the Arlington Pediatric Center.
Expected at the event: Lawson’s husband and three young children, pictured above.
The following road closures are planned for the races, from 7:30 to 10 a.m., according to Arlington County Police.
- Little Falls Road: N. George Mason Drive to Yorktown Blvd.
- Yorktown Blvd.: N. George Mason Drive to Williamsburg Blvd.
- Williamsburg Blvd.: Yorktown Blvd. to N. Emerson Street
- N. 33rd Street: N. Emerson Street to N. George Mason Drive
- George Mason Drive: N. 33rd Street to Yorktown Blvd.
Sun Gazette Endorses Cristol — After endorsing Michael McMenamin last week, the Sun Gazette is endorsing Katie Cristol for the second open Arlington County Board seat. The paper opined that Cristol had one of the worst campaign kickoffs in Arlington Democratic history, but “very few candidates in recent memory have improved so quickly.” [InsideNova]
Board Candidates Agree on Accessory Dwellings — The candidates for County Board reportedly agreed on one thing at a recent candidate forum: the need to loosen Arlington’s restrictive rules on accessory dwellings, “so that more seniors and young people could afford living in residential areas.” Accessory dwellings are sometimes called “granny flats,” “in-law apartments” or “backyard cottages.” Currently, Arlington approves the construction of no more than 28 accessory dwellings per year. [Falls Church News-Press]
GGW on County Board Race — The urbanist blog Greater Greater Washington has a breakdown of the Arlington County Board race and the stances of candidates on I-66, bike lanes, transit and development. [Greater Greater Washington]
Reminder: E-CARE This Weekend — Arlington County will hold its biannual E-CARE recycling event on Saturday. The event was rescheduled to take place on Halloween due to bad weather earlier this month. [ARLnow]
Walking for Lung Cancer Research — An Arlington woman is walking in a lung cancer fundraiser Sunday in memory of her sister, a nonsmoker and recent mother who died from the disease earlier this year. The event, “Breathe Deep D.C.,” is being held on the National Mall and is raising money for lung cancer research. [Patch]
Flickr pool photo by TheBeltWalk
Church Squatter Arrested — A man who has managed to squat in the attic of an Arlington church for three years has been arrested and charged with trespassing. An air conditioning repairman discovered the man and his makeshift living space in the attic of St. Ann’s Catholic Church, near Ballston. [NBC Washington]
New Rosslyn Sushi Restaurant Close to Opening — Rolls By U, a new sushi restaurant at 1731 Wilson Blvd in Rosslyn, is getting set to open next week, after originally hoping to open last month. The restaurant will offer burrito-sized sushi rolls in addition to regular-sized rolls. [Washington City Paper]
Fundraiser for Former Yorktown Football Player — Friends have organized an online fundraising campaign for a former Yorktown High School football player who was injured in an incident that was caught on video. Josh Bunche was attempting a flip while tailgating at a Clemson football game, but he slipped and suffered serious facial injuries. [Patch, GoFundMe]
McMenamin Responds to Sewage Plant Fence — Independent Arlington County Board candidate Mike McMenamin has issued a statement calling the $350,000 public art installation along a fence at the county’s sewage plant “wasteful.” Said McMenamin: “Extravagant projects like this help drive up taxes in Arlington County, making it more costly to own a home or to start a business.”
County Touts Fully Funded Pension — Arlington County’s employee pension fund is now 99 percent funded, thanks to prudent management. While some other communities struggle with underfunded pensions, Arlington has now been able to decrease the percentage of employee compensation going to the pension fund, from 24 percent — about $58 million — last year to 22 percent this year. [Arlington County]
Flickr pool photo by John Sonderman
Please also join us for the kick-off party on Thursday, October 22!
The Tenth Anniversary Appreciation Event will celebrate 10 years of the fun-run way to love our neighbors! The event is from 5:30 p.m. to 7:30 p.m. at Trot founder, Christ Church of Arlington (3020 N. Pershing Drive, on the corner of Highland).
- Everyone is invited to this free event!
- Come learn what’s new about this year’s Turkey Trot and how we’ll raise more funds than ever for our non-profit beneficiaries!
- Mark Schwartz, Acting County Manager, is the featured speaker, and we’ll have a panel discussion with some of our beneficiaries and supporters, including 2015 sponsors to date and the Arlington Small Business Alliance. (This year’s beneficiaries are AFAC, A-SPAN, Bridges to Independence, Doorways and Linden Resources.)
- Refreshments provided by Trot sponsor Pete’s New Haven Style Apizza.
- Twenty-five (25) complimentary registrations will be given as door prizes and each attendee will receive a Tenth Anniversary Commemorative pin.
- Questions? Please contact Trot director, Mark Riley at [email protected] or 703-927-0328.
- Lots of info available on our website: arlingtonvaturkeytrot.org
The preceding post was sponsored by the Arlington Turkey Trot.
Water Meter Replacement Nearly Complete — An effort to replace outdated water meters in Arlington with more modern meter technology is nearly complete. The project, which began in 2007, is now 98 percent complete and is expected to wrap up by the end of the year. [InsideNova]
Emergency Preparedness Month — September is Emergency Preparedness Month in Arlington. This year’s theme, which is also the theme of National Preparedness Month: “Don’t Wait, Communicate. Make Your Emergency Plan Today.” [Arlington County]
Donations Sought for Funeral — Residents in the Barcroft neighborhood are raising money following the passing of a beloved neighbor. Abuelita Pacheco was “a ‘grandmother’ to many of the neighborhood kids… a lady full of joy and resilience, always willing to lend a hand to anyone who needed it.” Now, funds are being raised to cover the cost of a funeral and burial in Pacheco’s native Colombia. Her family is already facing financial hardship: Pacheco was grandmother to five, include three blind triplets. [Crowdrise]
Arlington Neighborhood College Enrollment — Applications for Arlington County’s Neighborhood College program are due Sept. 10. The program “provides the knowledge and skills necessary for residents from across the County to get involved in local issues that affect their day-to-day lives and the lives of their neighbors.” [Arlington County]
Metro Delays This Morning — There were delays on the Orange, Silver and Blue lines during the latter part of the AM rush hour this morning, due to “police activity” at the L’Enfant Plaza station in D.C. [Twitter]
Flickr pool photo by Erinn Shirley
A Courthouse restaurant owner is hosting a gathering to celebrate the city of New Orleans’ progress since Hurricane Katrina.
Chef David Gaus, a New Orleans native who owns the Bayou Bakery, is holding an event called “Katrina 10” to show how far the city has come in the 10 years since the hurricane’s destruction.
Katrina 10 will be held at the Bayou Bakery (1515 N. Courthouse Road) from 5-7 p.m. on Aug. 29. There will be New Orleans-style food and drinks, with music provided by Laissez Foure. The gathering will also have an open mic for anyone to share their Katrina stories.
“Chef David Guas, who is a fellow New Orleans native, has and continues to give back to his beloved home city through charities and fundraisers. After watching the waters ravage the neighborhoods in which he grew up and his parents’ home, he truly knows the real impact of the disaster all too well,” said Simone Rathlé, the PR rep for the restaurant and Guas’ wife.
The event kicks off Guas’ charity week, where he will donate $10 from each sale of his cookbook, DamSweetGood, to the Roots of Music, a nonprofit that helps provide free musical education to children in New Orleans. The charity week runs from Aug. 29 until Sept. 5.
“As a New Orleans native who has seen the devastating affects of Hurricane Katrina first hand, it is both with a heavy heart, and hopeful focus on the road ahead, that we think back to the day it struck 10 years ago,” Rathlé said in a press release. “Tragedy often gives way to hope and brings people together to rise up.”
The officer, whose first name is DeDe, set up a GoFundMe campaign with a goal of $800 to cover the medical expenses of veterinary knee surgery. (Ed. note: officer’s last name has removed due to safety concerns.)
Smyth, a 6-year-old Chihuahua, injured his knee while jumping off of a bed to get a toy stuffed monkey, DeDe said. The injury is common for small dogs.
Smyth can still walk, but the veterinarian recommend limiting his movement to stop him from hurting his knee more.
“Despite his injury, he continues to be a loving little dog that keeps trying to play with his brother and neighboring dogs,” says the fundraising page. “Smyth is in need of a surgery that I am unable to fund at this time to repair his patella luxation. I don’t want my little guy to suffer, while I’m trying to save up the money. Any donation help my little guy get back to his fun playful little loving self.”
The surgery, anesthesia and pre- and post-operation care total $800, she said. During the procedure, Smyth will also have to get a heart echo to determine if he has a heart murmur.
“My concern is his treatment being prolonged by trying to raise the funds,” DeDe said. She said she’s usually a private person but is going public with this in order to speed up the treatment.
A couple years ago, her other dog, a Chihuahua named Wessin, had to have a similar surgery on both knees. DeDe said has a special connection with Smyth, who can pick up her moods and try to make her feel better.
“I’d never admit this to the other one [Wessin], but he’s my favorite,” DeDe said.
Two Arlington dog daycares are also helping DeDe raise money. Wag More Dogs (2606 S. Oxford Street) and WOOFS! Dog Training Center (4160 S. Four Mile Run Drive) will hang flyers about Smyth and his surgery, DeDe said.
DeDe did not want the police agency she works for named because she’s raising funds as a private individual and not as a representative of the department.
Fundraiser for Arlington Store Owner — The owner of Maley’s Music (2499 N. Harrison Street) has been hospitalized with a rare disease, just weeks after his wife suffered a debilitating stroke. That has prompted the couple’s daughter to start an online fundraiser to help the family pay its expenses. [Facebook, GoFundMe]
Arlington’s Inaccessible Bus Stops — About two thirds of Arlington’s 1,100 bus stops are not fully compliant with the Americans With Disabilities Act. Metro estimates that the average cost of upgrading a bus stop to ADA standards is $10,000. [Washington Post]
USS Arlington Readies for Deployment — More than two years after its commissioning, the USS Arlington is getting ready for deployment. The ship has a 40 year expected lifespan in active naval service. [InsideNova]
Photo courtesy Crystal City BID
The annual Zero Prostate Cancer Run/Walk, hosted by Zero- The End of Prostate Cancer on Sunday, is a series of four events, with a four-mile run/walk, kids race, a one mile fun run and a “virtual” option for those who don’t want to wake up early.
“This series is a great chance for men, women, children, and families of all ages to increase awareness and raise funds to end a disease that affects one in seven fathers, husbands, brothers, sons, grandfathers, partners and friends,” said Jamie Bearse, the CEO of Zero in a statement.
The event starts with the Superhero Dash, a short sprint for kids ages nine and younger, at 8:15 a.m. Kids can dress up as their favorite superheroes and will receive capes.
The four mile walk/run starts at 8:30 a.m. and will take runners from Pentagon Row courtyard (1101 S. Joyce St.) down Army Navy Drive to S. Adams Street. Runners will turn around at S. Adams Street and finish at Pentagon Row. Participants can select and put on a tie shortly after the one mile mark at the “Tie One of for Dad” transition area (at S. Nash Street).
There will be awards for the top three male and female finishers, top three survivor finishers and top three male and female finishers in each age group.
This year, people can help support the end of prostate cancer from their beds by wearing a “Snooze for Dudes” t-shirt and posting a picture to social media.
Participants can register as an individual or as team. Registration is $40 for the four-mile race, $20 for the one-mile walk, $20 for the Superhero Dash and $35 for Snooze for Dudes.
The race will also feature the “Courage Wall,” a chalkboard wall where people can write what they wish they had the courage to be or do. The wall was created by Del Ray local Nancy Belmont and has since gone viral.
“The run/walk aims to bring together survivors, patients, families, friends and many in the community to raise funds for prostate cancer, and share hope and passion, and the Courage Wall will help us to do that,” said Amanda Pini, the marketing and communications coordinator for the race.
S. Joyce Street, between 15th Street S. and Army Navy Drive, and Army Navy Drive, between S. Joyce Street and 25th Street S., will be closed from 7-11 a.m. as a result of the race.
Arlington Expects ‘Speedy’ Election Returns — The Democratic primary for Arlington County Board and the 45th Virginia House of Delegates district is taking place today, utilizing Arlington County’s new optical scanners. The county issued a press release on Monday promising that “changes should result in speedier reporting of unofficial results on election night.” Polls close at 7:00 p.m. and the first results are expected to be reported on the county website around 7:30.
Reminder: Candidate Essays — If you haven’t cast your ballot yet, you can peruse the “why should you vote for me” essays written by the six Democratic County Board candidates: Andrew Schneider, Bruce Wiljanen, Katie Cristol, James Lander, Peter Fallon, Christian Dorsey.
Working Group to Discuss S. Arlington School Site — Following the County Board’s scuttling of plans for an elementary school next to Thomas Jefferson Middle School, the Arlington School Board has created a working group to help decide the location for a new South Arlington elementary school. Former School Board candidate Greg Greeley was appointed chairman of the group, which is charged with creating a final report by November. The School Board is expected to take action on the new school on Dec. 15. [InsideNova]
Swimming Fundraiser Planned — The swim teams from four private clubs are coming together for a fundraiser on Sunday, June 28. Teams from Arlington Forest Club, Donaldson Run, Overlee and Washington Golf and Country Club will swim laps to raise money for the Arlington-based Marjorie Hughes Fund for Children. The fund helps low-income children obtain medical care and medications. [GoFundMe]
Flickr pool photo by Brian Allen
(Updated at 2:55 p.m.) An Arlington resident will take off on a 3,000-mile cycling race from Oceanside, Calif., to Annapolis next week.
Frank Fumich will ride more that 250 miles a day, since the Race Across America (RAAM), one of the most grueling athletic events around even for an endurance athlete like Fumich, must be completed in 12 days.
He is doing it in the hopes of raising thousands for a local man he does not know that well, but can really use his help.
Ryan Diviney, who was born in Reston, is cared for full-time by his father, Ken, in their Ashburn home. That care costs about $2 million annually, Ken Diviney said. Much of it is paid for by the family’s insurance, but there are still tens of thousands of dollars left uncovered.
Fumich, who also attended WVU, said he heard of the Diviney’s story a little over a year ago — shortly after he raised more than $75,000 to aid victims of the Boston Marathon bombings. Fumich ran 78 miles in 19 hours — representing three marathons for the three spectators who were killed on April 15, 2003. He then ran the money up to Boston.
“My plan was to run to Morgantown (W.Va.) from Northern Virginia,” said Fumich. “But it was too close to another race. But I knew I wanted to do something to help. I told Ken I was going to to the RAAM. I thought he would think I am crazy.”
Said Ken Diviney: “I did [think he was crazy].”
But he is also already very grateful.
“This helps enormously,” he said. “[The money] is a substantial amount that can help us in two ways. We put away money for Ryan’s longterm comfort and care and also help us in the short term with something he needs, like a therapeutic massaging chair.”
Fumich said Ken Diviney “has not left Ryan’s side since that day in 2009.”
In November of 2009, Ryan was a 20-year-old sophomore who had earned an academic scholarship at WVU. Ken Diviney said his son was attacked by two other men (who later served jail time for the incident), suffering a fractured skull, a broken jaw, and bleeding of the brain.
Ryan had a third of skull removed in surgery to control the brain swelling and has suffered numerous complications. He has been a vegetative state since.
Ken works with Ryan, now 25, every day to keep his body and muscles moving. he also cares for his hygiene needs and feeds him via feeding tube.
“It’s relentless,” says Ken Diviney. “It never really ends. I try to keep his body in motion six to eight hours a day.”
Fumich, a father of 5-year-old twins, says being a dad has made him more empathetic. He said taking on an athletic feat like the RAAM for a worthy cause will make the miles worthwhile.
“It feels good to help someone,” he said. “When I was reintroduced to [the Diviney’s] story from a friend, I couldn’t help but be struck hard by the difference in our lives and how just a few seconds sent our destinies in completely different directions.”
“I knew I was going to do something to help Ryan and his family, and this is it. Every time I hit “the wall” and feel the urge to quit, I’m going to think of how hard Ryan has continued to fight, and how hard his dad Ken and family continue to push onward.”
Because of changes to local grocery stores’ policies in the last two years, donations that have come from shoppers signing up to donate a portion of their purchase to schools have almost disappeared. According to Drew PTA President Evan Thomas, grocery store donations accounted for $22,700 of the PTA’s $30,000 budget in the 2012-2013 school year.
This year, the PTA projects $495 in revenue from the two stores that it has received money from, Harris Teeter and Safeway.
A manager at Harris Teeter said their program hasn’t changed, but schools are no longer allowed to sign up shoppers on the way in, which has hamstrung participation, Thomas said. According to a manager at Safeway, the chain was just purchased, and in the lengthy negotiations over the past two years, the “program has changed some.” According to Safeway’s website, donations through its eScrip program aren’t taken from credit card purchases.
Thomas doesn’t begrudge the grocery stores, he said, but the fiscal reality of the PTA’s current budget is inescapable.
“We felt fortunate that we were able to work within the program as we were before those changes were made,” he told ARLnow.com today. “It’s just a reality of where we are, and we’re just trying to look for ways to move forward and fundraising without doing it on the backs of our families.”
The PTA has responded by hosting a Spring Fair next Saturday, May 16, to draw families to the school and raise a few thousand dollars.
The fair will take place on the school’s grounds (3500 23rd Street S.) from 9:30 a.m. to 2:30 p.m. There will be foods from a variety of food trucks, a moon bounce, a cake walk game, and raffles. There will also be carnival style games, with the price of participation going to the Drew PTA.
“We’re really hoping the Spring Fair can serve as a signature event so we can have a little more certainty going into each year to allocate comfortably,” Thomas said.
The PTA has received help from its counterpart at Nottingham Elementary School in North Arlington. The Nottingham PTA has chipped in $1,500 to offset costs and provided mentorship and support — Drew is hoping to model the Spring Fair after Nottingham’s annual MayFest.
As for the drastic downturn in PTA revenue, Thomas said purchases the group has made in the past, like smartboards for classrooms and a climbing wall, will no longer be feasible. Thomas said 65 percent of Drew students are on a free or reduced lunch program. APS spokesman Frank Bellavia said it’s one of nine schools in the county that have at least 40 percent of its students receiving free or reduced lunches.
Image, top, courtesy Drew Model School PTA. Photo, bottom, via Google Maps