Steamy Stretch Starting — It’s hot and humid outside today and through the end of the week. Afternoon storms are possible each day. During this hot stretch, authorities are warning people to stay hydrated and to make sure their air conditioners are in good working condition. [Washington Post, Twitter, Twitter]
Ultra-Nationalist Group Based in Arlington — The National Policy Institute, the “institutional center” of the nationalist movement that has come out of the woodwork in the U.S. thanks to the presidential candidacy of Donald Trump, is based here in Arlington. The Southern Poverty Law Center has called the think tank a “white supremacist” group. [Forward]
New Book About Arlington — Local author HK Park has published another book about Arlington. This kid-oriented, 44-page paperback is called “How Your City Works!! Behind The Scenes In Arlington, VA.”
Discussion of Pike Development — Arlington County Board members Libby Garvey and Christian Dorsey discussed the approval of the Rappahannock Coffee site redevelopment in the county’s Board meeting wrap-up video. [YouTube]
Signature Theatre Announces New Cast — The cast for the Signature Theatre production of “Jelly’s Last Jam” includes a Tony Award winner, a Helen Hayes Award winner and a star jazz pianist. The musical begins at the Shirlington theater in August. [Playbill]
Arlington’s Got Talent Winner — Lyfe, a spoken word artist, is the 2016 winner of the Arlington’s Got Talent competition. [InsideNova]
Photo courtesy B. Heather
With temperatures expected to reach into the low- to mid-90s today and tomorrow, now’s a good time to review some hot weather safety tips and some of the cooling assistance programs offered by Arlington County.
Arlington’s Agency on Aging offers free fans to low-income seniors. The program, sponsored by Dominion and the Va. Dept. for the Aging, is open to Arlington residents 60 or over, with income at or below 150 percent of the federal poverty level, and a home without air conditioning or fans.
Arlington also administers Virginia’s Cooling Assistance Program. Qualifying households can apply for the program, which assists with the purchase of cooling equipment and/or the electricity to power that equipment, between June 15 and Aug. 15. For more information, Arlington residents can call 703-228-1350.
The county maintains a “Hot Tips for Keeping Cool” page on its website. Among the tips for staying safe in hot weather:
- Drink plenty of fluids (non-alcoholic), even if you’re not thirsty.
- Wear light-weight, loose-fitting clothing.
- Stay cool indoors.
- Schedule outdoor activities carefully and wear sunscreen.
- If you exercise outdoors, go in the morning or evening hours.
- Eat light, regular meals — avoid hot foods and heavy meals.
- Never leave anyone — infants, children, or pets — in a parked car.
- Know the signs of heat related illness.
- All County facilities — including community centers and libraries — are air-conditioned and open to the public.
Flickr photo by Philliefan99
The Tree Stewards of Arlington and Alexandria are asking local residents to water their trees. The group says that the hot, dry weather has “taken a toll” on trees in the area.
The stifling weather has taken a toll on trees in Arlington and Alexandria. Many need water, especially those planted in the last three years. Community members can make a big difference just by watering their trees says TreeStewards, a volunteer group that provides education and support to our trees. Residents are urged to water both their own and street trees they see in need. To water, leave your hose turned on low for a half hour once a week or install a slow-release watering bag (Ooze Tube, GatorBag sold in hardware stores). TreeStewards guarantees Instant Karma to all who water a street tree weekly!
Trees make an enormous impact on our community. They help clean the air and provide shade and beauty. Our summer droughts and storms can do lasting damage unless we tend to our trees.
The Tree Stewards offer advice for watering trees here.
To help you get through this cold, rainy November day, we thought it might be a good time to go through the archives and find some of the “hottest” stories of the summer.
These are not necessarily the most important stories — rather, they’re just intended to get your mind off the cold and on to something from those hot, humid, hazy days of summer.
Flickr pool photo (top) by philliefan99
On this, the 50th 90+ degree day of the year, you’re probably already a pro at beating the heat. But just in case you need a refresher on hot weather best practices, here are a few resources that may come in handy.
For bike commuters, Bike Arlington’s Chris Eatough has a number of important tips for staying cool and hydrated on the road and non-smelly in the office. Among them: leave earlier in the morning, don’t wear a backpack and freeze your water bottles before heading out.
For pet owners, the Animal Welfare League of Arlington has advice for keeping your pets safe in hot weather. Limiting exercise for older dogs and dogs with thicker coats is recommended. Put sunscreen on your pet’s nose and ear tips if he or she is going to be out in the sun for awhile. And, of course, never, ever leave your pet in the car while running errands.
For people of all ages, Arlington County’s Hot Tips for Keeping Cool includes classic, common-sense hot weather advice that sometimes we can lose sight of in the midst of our busy schedules. For instance, if you’re going to be outside drink plenty of fluids, even if you’re not thirsty. Exercise in the morning or evening hours. And, again: never, ever leave kids or pets in the car unattended.
For local parents, the county’s spraygrounds are a great place for younger children to have fun and cool off. Check out the list of sprayground parks and their hours.
Finally, the county also has a page with tips for reducing your electricity usage during times of high power demand, such as hot and humid days like today.
With temperatures hitting 102 degrees in Arlington this afternoon, it would be a perfect day for kids to cool down at the spray park in Shirlington’s Drew Park. Unfortunately, due to budget cuts that took effect last week, the park is now closed on Tuesdays.
Tomorrow, as temperatures again climb toward the triple digit mark, the water will be shut off at Hayes Park, on North Lincoln Street near Clarendon. On Thursday, the county’s third spray park — Lyon Village Park — will go dry.
“Our FY2011 budget cuts included closing each spray park one day a week between Memorial Day and Labor Day,” Parks Department spokesperson Susan Kalish said in an email. “The good news is that there are at least two spraygrounds open in the County on any given day.”
In addition to cutting three days from the spray park schedule, the budget also included a reduction in hours. Formerly, each park was open from 10:00 a.m. to 8:00 p.m. during the summer. Now, the parks are open from noon to 5:00 p.m. Monday through Thursday, and noon to 8:00 p.m. Friday through Sunday.
Some people question the wisdom of cutting morning hours.
“Now parents who wanted to take their kids at 10:00 a.m. before the heat of the day will be forced to take their kids during the hottest parts of the day,” one parent told us.
The cuts will collectively save the county $20,000 in water costs per year.
Arlington County photo.