Dogs and their owners will make their way around the Market Common Clarendon loop, while stopping at local businesses to trick-or-treat. Each year, owners compete to have the best costume for their furry friends.
Kelly Spafford, a spokeswoman for Doorways, recommends owners use “originality, creativity and humorous/clever costumes” to win the costume contest.
“Consider combining your dog’s costume with your own (dressing up isn’t mandatory, but there will be prizes!),” Spafford said in an email. “Remember to make sure your dog feels safe and comfortable in their costume.”
In addition to trick-or-treating and the costume contest, dogs will have the ability to show off their skills on an agility course.
Howl-O-Ween is dog and human friendly, Spafford said.
“It’s a way to get your kids involved in charity work, [as] volunteering is typically unavailable to them for confidentiality, insurance or other reasons at most human service nonprofits, so this is a way to get them connected to the importance of helping others early, so bring the whole family,” she said.
Howl-O-Ween is a charity event, and costs $30 for adults and $20 for children. All proceeds go to helping women and dogs that are victims of abuse.
Immediately after Howl-O-Ween, the Market Common Clarendon will host its annual family-oriented Falloween event from noon to 4 p.m.
The free event will also have a petting zoo, face painting and pumpkin decorating. Kids will have the opportunity to go trick-or-treating at local businesses from 1-3:30 p.m.
Fairlington Dental will be buying back candy after Halloween this year.
Kids can bring their Halloween candy to the dental office from Nov. 2-5, where they will be paid $1 per pound.
The candy will be sent to Operation Gratitude in California, a program that sends care packages to troops serving overseas. Dawn Patrick, patient concierge at Fairlington Dental, said that the candy is used as filler in boxes that mostly include personal cards, games, hygiene products and snacks.
This is the 10th year Fairlington Dental has bought back candy, and the office has donated to Operation Gratitude since it started the program.
Fairlington Dental will also donate a portion of the candy to the Mattie Miracle Foundation, Patrick said. The foundation collects candy for a free snack cart for children and families at the MedStar Georgetown University Hospital, as well as for other hospitals and cancer wards, according to the website.
The dental practice used to buy candy for $3 per pound but dropped the price to $1 per pound as the program became more popular. The office also pays for the shipping, which can get pricey with such heavy packages.
“Back then, we were getting about 100 pounds,” Patrick said. “Now our biggest year has been around 600 pounds.”
The office asks that the donations are capped at five pounds for the buy back program.
Donors also have the option to donate their candy as an entry in a contest where groups can win an $100 pizza party for selling back the most candy. Patrick said a group Fairlington mothers has won the contest for the past few years, with a group donation of about 35 pounds of candy.
The key for eating candy and other foods high in sugar is to do so in moderation, Patrick said, adding that a one-time pizza party is much better than eating candy for days or weeks after Halloween.
Instead of sugar, Fairlington Dental tries to encourage eating candy with xylitol, a sweetener that breaks down bacteria instead of feeding it.
A full list of local dental practices that buy back candy can be found on the website halloweencandybuyback.com.
Filckr pool photo by Ddimick
(Updated at 5:05 p.m.) The Arlington County Police Department live-tweeted Saturday’s Halloween-themed bar crawl in Clarendon, providing Twitter followers with frequent updates, safety tips and photos.
The bar crawl, billed as “The Rise of the Day Drinkers,” ran from 2:00 to 9:00 p.m. It was the first bar crawl approved for a permit under the county’s new bar crawl regulations, which are intended to curb drunken criminal activity by providing a larger police presence, at the expense of crawl organizers.
The stepped-up police presence apparently worked. This past weekend’s Halloween-theme was a relatively quiet affair, with only 9 or 10 arrests, according to initial reports. There were no reports of any bar crawl patrons stripping naked, or any other significant incidents, according to police spokesman Lt. Kip Malcolm.
ACPD’s live-tweeting highlighted authorities’ efforts to keep everyone safe — from officers making sure long lines outside of bars did not stretch out onto the street to paramedics having a stretcher ready should medical assistance be needed.
The police department’s running commentary also had some lighter moments, including an officer taking a photo with Muppets characters, a joke about finding Waldo, and a reminder that orange could be the new black for bar crawl patrons who choose to drive home while drunk (see below).
Remember to drink responsibly & plan a sober ride home. Over the limit & these costumes can become a reality. pic.twitter.com/38FxQlJFv9
— ArlingtonCountyPD (@ArlingtonVaPD) November 1, 2014
Photos via @ArlingtonVaPD
Many of us go through the annual struggle of figuring out a creative Halloween costume. For Clarendon resident and amputee Josh Sundquist, his disability presents him an annual showcase for his creativity.
Sundquist is dressing up as a foosball player — the tabletop soccer game — this year after being named to the U.S. Amputee Soccer team. His previous costumes include a lamp, a gingerbread man with a leg bitten off and a brilliant flamingo costume.
The above video is how Sundquist made this year’s costume. Sundquist is a 2006 Paralympian in downhill skiing and, according to his website, the only person in history named to both the Paralympian ski team and the amputee soccer team. He lost his leg after being diagnosed with bone cancer when he was 9 years old.
Sundquist is an also an author and motivational speaker, and his book, Just Don’t Fall is on sale now.
Photo via Josh Sundquist
It wouldn’t be October if there weren’t some creepy creations crawling onto lawns around Arlington.
We encountered residents who surrendered their yard to frightful grave-dwellers on N. Jackson Street, in Ashton Heights, and in two yards within a block of S. Joyce Street in Aurora Highlands.
Have you seen other ghoulish Halloween decorations around town? If so, snap a photo or two and post it in the comments section.
Halloween takes place on Friday, Oct. 31 this year. There is no official time for trick-or-treating in Arlington County.
A number of Halloween-themed events are taking place over the next two weekends, including the Howl-O-Ween dog walk, the Douglas Park Halloween Trail of Terror, a family-friendly Halloween party at Potomac Overlook Regional Park, and a Halloween bar crawl in Clarendon.
The study, conducted by financial advice company NerdWallet using data from online event platform EventBrite, says Arlington’s “overall score for Halloween parties,” which is a combination of number of RSVPs and affordability, is 83.79 out of 100.
Arlington registered a seven out of 10 for its “party engagement score” and has an average party cost of $12.15, second-lowest in the top 10, behind No. 8 Nashville, Tenn., at $12.11. Washington, D.C., is the 17th-best city in the country for parties with an overall score of 81.73 and an average cost of $25.64.
The engagement score is on a scale of 1-10, according to NerdWallet, with a 10 meaning more than 20,000 people in one city have RSVP-ed to a Halloween party. The only city in the country to achieve a 10 was San Francisco, the top city on the list. Behind San Francisco, which had an overall score of 96.14, on the list are New York City, San Antonio, Texas, and Phoenix.
Flickr pool photo by ddimick
Halloween Bar Crawl Begins Discounting — Tickets for the Nov. 1 Halloween bar crawl in Clarendon are being discounted from $15 to $9 on LivingSocial. So far, 63 tickets have been purchased on the site. A police source tells ARLnow.com that ACPD is planning on having “a number of officers specifically detailed to Clarendon for the crawl and throughout the night until a little after closing time.” [LivingSocial]
APS Finds Ways to Make Kids Want Veggies — The Arlington School Board was flabbergasted to learn that the school system’s food services division has apparently found a way to make kids want to eat their veggies. The secret: creatively pairing veggies with other foods. For instance, while spinach alone had an anemic 8 percent selection rate, a spinach and strawberry salad was selected by 78 percent of elementary students. [InsideNova]
What Foreign Students Like About Arlington — A group of exchange students from Germany and Ukraine recently talked about their experience staying in Arlington. They said they liked Arlington’s Metro access and bike paths, and were impressed by how proud Americans are of their country. However, our food got mixed reviews: “The food, they said, tastes good but is ‘a bit unhealthy.'” [Falls Church News-Press]
Open House for TJ Site Evaluation — The Thomas Jefferson Working Group, which is charged with evaluating the feasibility of a new elementary school near Thomas Jefferson Middle School, will hold an open house Saturday, inviting the community to “learn about the process, review site materials, provide feedback and ask questions.” A vocal group of residents has spoken out against the potential loss of parkland at the site.
Kudos for Crystal City’s Startup Scene — Southern Alpha, a website that writes about startups in the southeastern U.S., is impressed with Crystal City’s recent entrepreneurial push. [Southern Alpha]
Falloween runs from 10:00 a.m. to 1:00 p.m. on Saturday, Oct. 25, with a petting zoo, trick-or-treating and “strolling entertainment” throughout the event. The festival is intended for families to dress up, along with their pets, and all events during the day are free.
In addition to the petting zoo and trick-or-treating at retailers, starting at 10:00 a.m., D.C.-based children’s performer Mr. Knick Knack will bring his guitar and entertain the youngsters for the morning. At 11:45 a.m., Rocknoceros will take the stage with its three-man band of multiple instruments, including the accordion, ukelele and keyboard and continue to play for the little ones.
There will also be a festive photo booth and pumpkin painting. A spokeswoman for Market Common also promised “surprises” throughout the event.
Image via Market Common Clarendon
Just in case you need an excuse to dress up your dog in a costume while walking around Clarendon, there’s an event for that. Plus, it benefits two Arlington nonprofit organizations.
The Howl-O-Ween Walk runs from 9:00-11:30 a.m. on Saturday, October 25. Doorways for Women and Families teamed up with Homeward Trails Animal Rescue for the fundraiser, which also serves to raise awareness about domestic violence against women, children and pets.
The trick-or-treat event begins at James Hunter Park in Clarendon with coffee, bagels and a kickoff ceremony. Walkers and their pets will follow a one mile route, picking up treats at selected businesses along the way. Festivities continue back at the park with snacks, doggy goodie bags, a demonstration by the Arlington County Police K-9 Unit and a doggy costume contest.
Online registration is $30 for adults and $20 for children under 16. This year, people also can create an online fundraising page in their pet’s honor. The top fundraisers can win prizes including hotel stays and gift cards.
Sue Bell, executive director of Homeward Trails, said domestic violence victims and their pets will have something new to celebrate at this year’s event: the enactment of a pet protective order law in Virginia.
“This bill allows companion animals (dogs and cats) to be added to protective orders in the case of domestic violence… something that in the past has resulted in victims staying in a dangerous situation longer in order to protect their pets from harm,” Bell said via email. “We will be having Del. Patrick Hope and [state] Sen. Barbara Favola speak on this at the kick-off of the walk. It’s a huge victory for both human and canine/feline victims of domestic abuse!”
Participants are encouraged to wear their spooky and creative costumes to the event on Saturday, November 1. The crawl, dubbed “The rise of the day drinkers,” will take place from 2:00-9:00 p.m.
Tickets currently are available online for $15, and a limited number of tickets will be available at the door for $20. The fee gets participants a souvenir mug, food and drink specials at bars in Clarendon and a raffle entry. There will be prizes for the most festively dressed participants.
Bars along the crawl include Whitlow’s, Mad Rose, Clarendon Ballroom, Bracket Room and Hunan One. A full list of participating bars can be found on the Clarendon Halloween Crawl website.
Buses to Use I-66 Shoulder — Buses will be allowed to use the shoulder lane on I-66 inside the Beltway during heavy traffic, starting next month. VDOT is launching the program as a way to relieve some congestion and improve the on-time performance of bus routes that utilize the traffic-choked corridor. [Washington Post]
Parkmobile Now Available in Courthouse, Rosslyn — Arlington County has completed the implementation of the Parkmobile parking payment system for the Courthouse and Rosslyn neighborhoods, ahead of schedule. [Twitter]
KickStarter Launches for ‘Wearable’ Project — A Kickstarter fundraising campaign has started for a local startup company featured on ARLnow.com last month. OnYou is planning to produce a wearable compression sleeve and carbon case for smartphones. Worn primarily during workouts, the product uses powerful magnets to attach the phone and case to the sleeve. The product was designed by a former professional poker player and prototyped here in Arlington. [Kickstarter]
Elliot in the Morning Halloween Bash Returns — DC 101’s Elliot in the Morning will be back in Arlington for the show’s annual Halloween bash. The costume party will be held starting at 8:00 p.m. on Halloween — Friday, Oct. 31 — at Clarendon Ballroom. A $3,000 grand prize is being offered for best costume. [Clarendon Nights]
Flickr pool photo by John Sonderman
Hundreds of grade-schoolers flooded the sidewalks of Courthouse this morning, trick-or-treating for Halloween.
Key Elementary School students, along with teachers and parents, went up and down Clarendon and Wilson Blvd just after 9:00 a.m., collecting candy from tables local businesses like John Marshall Bank and the Bank of Georgetown.
At the same time, at Courthouse Plaza, a band made up of elementary schoolers in costumes — like North Korean Supreme Leader Kim Jong-Un and Nationals third baseman Ryan Zimmerman — played “Let’s Go Band” while workers from the office buildings walked by and snapped pictures with their cell phones.
Halloween is here and while children prepare to loot local homes of their sweets, adults may still be pondering what to do tonight.
Going out to a Halloween party? Accompanying your kids while trick-or-treating? Staying home to hand out candy?
Or, maybe, not doing anything festive at all.
Which option best describes your plans tonight?
Despite a full slate of Halloween activities last weekend, the actual holiday is this week, meaning coworkers in costumes and, of course, kids trick-or-treating.
“Moonset” is expected at 4:23 p.m., according to Weather.com, and if it takes too long to change into costume, parents could be caught in the rain thanks to a chance of showers at night.
Arlington officials and local organizations have a number of tips for staying safe Halloween night.
Police advise parents to instruct children to stay in the neighborhoods they know and to refuse any unwrapped candy. When children return home, parents should inspect candy for signs of tampering or foreign objects. Better yet, police say, parents should head out with their children on Halloween.
“We always recommend that parents accompany children, especially younger children,” said Arlington County Police spokesman Lt. Michael Watson. “We also recommend that children and parents have something that would be visible in the dark, like reflective vests, a flashlight or some sort of glow stick, so they can be seen by drivers.”
If it rains, the following advice from Arlington County, issued last year following Hurricane Sandy, could apply: “Watch out for slip and trip hazards such as wet leaves and small branches on sidewalks and driveways.”
AAA, meanwhile, is advising drivers to use extra caution after 4:00 p.m. on Thursday. There are about four times as many fatal child pedestrian collisions on Halloween compared to other days of the year.
“To prevent this from happening, area motorists need to be especially cautious between the hours of 4 p.m. and midnight, when pedestrians are most vulnerable,” said John B. Townsend II, AAA Mid-Atlantic’s Manager of Public and Government Affairs. “Instead of cruising along hell-for-leather, drivers should slow down in areas with pedestrian traffic and watch for trick-or-treaters who may be crossing mid-block. Most pedestrian fatalities happen in mid-block settings, not in crosswalks.”
The automobile organization also had the following advice for parents of trick-or-treaters.
- Make sure an adult or responsible older youth supervises children under age 12.
- Teach your child to stop at well-lit houses and never to enter a stranger’s home or garage.
- Establish a return time.
- Tell your child not to eat any treats until they return home.
- Review trick-or-treat safety precautions, including pedestrian and traffic safety rules.
SoberRide to Offer Free Halloween Cab Rides — The Washington Regional Alcohol Program is offering free taxi rides next Thursday on the night of Halloween. From 10:00 p.m. to 4:00 a.m., revelers can dial 1-800-200-TAXI, be picked up and taken to their destination free of charge, within a $30 fare. The service is offered in D.C. as well as the Maryland suburbs and other Northern Virginia municipalities. The service is being offered to prevent drunk driving, and WRAP says that 52 percent of traffic deaths on Halloween come from drunk drivers. [SoberRide]
Crystal City BID to Give Away Free Bike Lights — The Crystal City Business Improvement District will be giving away free bicycle lights this afternoon (Friday). The giveaway is taking place at the Crystal City exit of the Mount Vernon Trail from 4:00 to 6:00 p.m. At the bike light giveaway last year, cyclists received front and tail “Bug Eye” lights. [Crystal City BID]
Road Closures for the Marine Corps Marathon — The Marine Corps Marathon is this Sunday, and many road around Arlington will be closed while runners participate. The closures will begin at 4:00 a.m. and many roads will not reopen until 4:30 p.m. [Arlington County]
Flickr pool photo by ddimick. Disclosure: Crystal City BID is an ARLnow.com advertiser.