The defending Stanley Cup champions have returned to the ice — in Arlington, at least.
The Washington Capitals kicked off training camp today (Friday) at the newly christened MedStar Capitals Iceplex in Ballston.
The team will hold a series of practices and scrimmages over the next 19 days, leading up to the season opener (and hoisting of the Caps’ first title banner) on Oct. 3.
All of the practices will be free and open to the public at the iceplex, located atop the former Ballston Common Mall.
Practices and skates will generally run between 9:30 a.m. and 3:30 p.m. each day. A full schedule is available on the team’s website.
Photo via Monumental Sports and Entertainment
The Kettler Iceplex in Ballston, home of the Stanley Cup champion Washington Capitals, is getting a new name.
MedStar Health is taking over as the practice arena’s corporate sponsor, according to a press release from Monumental Sports and Entertainment, the company controlled by Caps owner Ted Leonsis. Effective immediately, the arena will now be known as the MedStar Capitals Iceplex.
— MedStar Health (@MedStarHealth) July 30, 2018
The Caps hold their practices in the 137,000-square-foot facility, adjacent to the new Ballston Quarter development, and it’s also home to office space for the team’s staff and executives with the Washington Mystics, the WNBA team owned by Leonsis.
Kettler, a local real estate developer, has sponsored the arena since shortly after it opened atop the Ballston public parking garage in 2006. Even though its name will soon no longer adorn the building, the company “remains a very significant partner of ours,” according to MSE spokeswoman Kate Bedingfield.
She added that work to outfit the building with MedStar signage, both inside and outside, will “get underway soon.”
MedStar will also become the naming rights sponsor for the new practice facility planned for Southeast D.C. to serve the Washington Wizards and the Mystics, as well as for the “new, top-of-the-line esports training facility adjacent to Capital One Arena” that’s home to Leonsis’ esports team.
Arlington Ridge Power Outage — Updated at 9:25 a.m. — A few dozen Dominion customers are without power in the Arlington Ridge and Pentagon City neighborhoods this morning due to an outage cased by “power line damage,” according to the utility’s website. Electricity is expected to be restored by 1 p.m. A tipster says the the Riverhouse apartments and some of the Pentagon Row shops were affected by the outage. Meanwhile, per Arlington County: “Arlington Ridge Road access from Washington Blvd as well as SB Arlington Ridge at S. Lynn Street will be closed for approximately 2 hours while Dominion Power repairs a damaged power line.” [Twitter]
APS Extended Day Website Survey — Arlington Public Schools is conducting a survey regarding its Extended Day management system. APS is considering a new system that would include an interactive parent portal, online registration, access to family accounts, and a database for family and staff information. [Arlington Public Schools, Google Forms]
Tax Delinquency Rate May Reach Record Low — “Arlington’s treasurer is optimistic that the county’s tax-delinquency rate could fall to another record low when it is reported later this summer… The delinquency rate to beat is the 0.226 percent reported last year, representing the amount of real-estate and personal-property taxes unpaid out of the roughly $800 million that flows through the treasurer’s office each year.” [InsideNova]
New Kettler Iceplex Sign — There’s a new sign on the parking garage in front of Kettler Capitals Iceplex: “Ballston / Home of the Washington Capitals / 2018 Stanley Cup Champions.” [Twitter]
Arlington Rocks the Red — It was lit in Arlington during last night’s Stanley Cup Finals — literally. In Rosslyn, a swath of red and the words “ALL CAPS” was projected onto a prominent office building. In Ballston, the lights atop another office building were switched to red. [Twitter, Twitter]
Young Caps Fan Provides All the Luck — Parker Matthews, a 7-year-old Arlington resident, kept finding four leaf clovers on the ground during the Washington Capitals’ playoff and championship run. She would display the lucky keepsakes in front of the TV during games. [NBC Washington]
Celebrations Around Arlington — The scene last night after the Caps won the Stanley Cup in Game 5 was one of jubilation throughout Arlington. In some parts of the county, homemade fireworks were going off. In Clarendon, fans cheered in the streets while a fire truck used its horn to lead the crowd in a chant of “let’s go Caps.” [Twitter, Twitter]
Where to Buy Caps Stanley Cup Gear — The team store at the Kettler Capitals Iceplex in Ballston could have Stanley Cup championship merchandise as soon as Saturday, though the exact timing is unclear. [Twitter]
In Less Exciting News — “Rising interest rates already are impacting the amount Arlington County taxpayers will have to shell out for bond-approved capital projects in coming years. But county-government officials hailed the recent 2.99-percent interest rate received on sale of $153 million in municipal debt as a testament to the government’s rock-solid credit rating.” [InsideNova, Arlington County]
Work Begins to Replace Collapsed Pipe — A collapsed 18-inch stormwater pipe is being replaced on Arlington Ridge. The work is necessitating a detour for Arlington Ridge Road traffic between 23rd Street and S. Glebe Road. The stretch has been the site of numerous water main issues over the past few years. [Twitter]
Big Turnout for Caps Sendoff — Thousands of fans reportedly flocked to the Kettler Capitals Iceplex in Ballston on Saturday to give the Caps a Stanley Cup sendoff as they traveled to Las Vegas for Game 1 of the finals. [WUSA 9]
Manager Warns Against Additional Debt — “[Don’t] do it. That’s Arlington County Manager Mark Schwartz’s advice to County Board members, urging them to resist any temptation to disregard the government’s self-imposed, and for the most part sacrosanct, debt guidelines. The guidelines, long in place to help the county government retain AAA bond ratings, call for the cost of servicing municipal debt to remain less than 10 percent of the total overall county-government budget in any given year.” [InsideNova]
ACFD Lends a Hand in Ellicott City — Arlington County Fire Department units are helping out the flood recovery efforts in Ellicott City, Md. The catastrophic flooding in Ellicott City over the weekend prompted a regional disaster aid response. [Twitter]
DJO Wins State Softball Crown — The Bishop O’Connell Knights girls high school softball team won the Virginia Independent Schools Athletic Association Division I tournament last week, capturing the state championship title for the seventh year in a row. [InsideNova]
Photo courtesy @thelastfc
The Washington Capitals are encouraging fans to flock to Ballston on Saturday to help send the team off to the Stanley Cup finals.
The event will be held around noon at Kettler Capitals Iceplex (627 N. Glebe Road).
More from a media advisory:
Practice is scheduled for 10:30 a.m., with players beginning to exit the building in front of fans on their way to Las Vegas at approximately noon.
The 8th floor parking deck will be closed. Fans are encouraged to take the metro (Ballston-MU station) and access the facility from the elevators and stairwell located on Glebe and Randolph.
The Caps will face off against the Las Vegas Golden Knights at 8 p.m. eastern on Monday.
Arlington Economic Development is hosting Arlington Premiere at the Kettler Capitals Iceplex (627 N. Glebe Road) from 5:30-7:30 p.m. on Wednesday, November 29.
Attendees can “welcome new business owners and network with other key business and community leaders as we celebrate our growing business community,” a blurb on the event, which is sponsored by the Ballston Business Improvement District, says. Registration is no longer available as the event has reached capacity.
Also at the event, AED will reveal the winners of the Arlington’s First Four competition. The contest honors locally-based businesses that have shown revenue growth over a three-year period.
“The Arlington Premiere is a great way for you to meet our new businesses and strengthen your relationship with other county and community leaders,” AED director Victor Hoskins wrote in an email to the public.
McAuliffe Visits New District Brewing — Gov. Terry McAuliffe (D-Va.) made a “quick stop” at New District Brewing near Shirlington yesterday, touring the brewery and posing for photos. [Twitter, Twitter]
Caps Continue Playoff Fan Activities — For their Round 2 playoff matchup against the Pittsburgh Penguins, the Capitals are continuing a series of fan activities, including free yoga classes and viewings of team practices, at Kettler Capitals Iceplex in Ballston. [Washington Capitals]
County Gets Planning Award — Arlington County is one of a dozen recipients of the American Planning Association’s Gold 2017 National Planning Achievement Award. “County government and the community have together built Arlington into one of the nation’s best places to live, work or play,” County Board Chair Jay Fisette said in a statement. [Arlington County]
APS Pushes Solar Power — “Clearing a legal hurdle that may affect other Virginia school systems, Arlington Public Schools has created a new type of purchasing authority so it may enter into power purchase agreements (PPAs) for solar power.” [Blue Virginia]
Flickr pool photo by Dennis Dimick
Team yoga instructor Kelly Moore will lead classes on the rooftop of the Kettler Capitals Iceplex in Ballston every morning the Caps have a playoff game. The first hour-long class takes place tomorrow at 6:30 a.m. and the next one is on Saturday, April 15.
Although the likelihood of doing a downward facing dog pose next to a Caps player at one of the free classes is incredibly slim, the players do practice yoga, the Washington Post reported.
Caps fans are also encouraged to attend the team’s practices and take part in special activities throughout the week. Kids can visit the mezzanine level at Kettler Capitals Iceplex for face painting and balloon art. Team mascot Slapshot and the Red Rockers also will be there. The practice schedule is updated weekly online.
Arlington Housing Sale Prices Drop — Arlington showed a year-over-year decline in housing sale prices in March. The median price of $508,500 was a 6.2 percent drop from a year ago. However, real estate experts indicate that’s only because of changing inventory in Arlington — more condos and townhomes instead of detached houses — and it’s not a sign of an overall slump. [WTOP]
No Fire in Barricaded Person Situation — Police and firefighters responded to the 1500 block of Crystal Drive last night for a report of a barricaded person inside an apartment that may have been on fire. The smell of smoke had been reported coming from the apartment. Emergency responders tried to gain access to the apartment for a couple hours but cleared the scene when they determined there was no fire. [Fox 5]
Motorcyclist Dies Following Collision — A motorcyclist has died following a collision with an SUV in Chevy Chase. The 24-year-old man was an Arlington resident. [Bethesda Magazine]
Caps Fan Leaves Salty Message — Starting tomorrow, the Washington Capitals face the Toronto Maple Leafs in the first round of the Stanley Cup playoffs, and one fan left a request for a different playoff outcome than in recent years. A photo shows a message written on the boards of the Caps’ practice rink at Kettler Capitals Iceplex in Ballston: “Y’all better make it past the 2nd round.” [USA Today Sports]
Competing Convention Watch Parties — The Arlington GOP and Arlington-Falls Church Young Republicans are hosting a Republican convention watch party tonight at Arlington Rooftop Bar & Grill in Courthouse. The Arlington Young Democrats, meanwhile, are holding their own watch party for the last night of the GOP convention. That event is being held at Mad Rose Tavern in Clarendon. [Facebook, Facebook]
Youth Hockey Team Profiled — As part of its “Harris’ Heroes” segment, TV station ABC 7 yesterday profiled the NOVA Cool Cats, a hockey team for youth with developmental disabilities. The team plays at Kettler Capitals Iceplex in Ballston. [WJLA]
Road Rage Incident in Rosslyn — A man allegedly brandished a handgun and followed two women during a road rage incident on Wilson Blvd in Rosslyn, after the female driver honked her horn while the man’s vehicle blocked her path. [Arlington County]
Lighting Task Force Needs More Time — A task force trying to determine whether to add lighting to the Williamsburg Middle School athletic fields says it will present its findings in January. The task force, chaired by former County Board primary challenger Erik Gutshall, was originally expected to wrap up its work in June. [InsideNova]
This Friday afternoon, an Arlington family is hosting an ice skating fundraiser to help fund childhood cancer research, in memory of the daughter they lost to the disease.
Ellen and Tom Blair lost their daughter, Catherine Elizabeth Blair, in 2011 to neuroblastoma, a deadly cancer that mostly affects children younger than 5 years old, according to the Mayo Clinic. In her memory, they started the Catherine Elizabeth Blair Foundation to provide grants to researchers searching for a cure for the disease that kills more than 60 percent of those afflicted.
Friday’s event, Skate for Catherine, is the foundation’s largest fundraiser, now in its fourth years. From 1:30-3:00 p.m. at Kettler Capitals Iceplex (627 N. Glebe Road), attendees will skate on the ice and participate in raffles for prizes like an iPad mini or a package of tickets to Capitals, Wizards and D.C. United games.
“Even though the reason is serious, the event is a lot of fun,” Ellen Blair says in the foundation’s promotional video, embedded above. “Catherine would have loved it. It’s a skating party with food, music, lots of prizes and your friends will be there.”
Tickets for the event are $20 and include skate rental and refreshments. The deadline for purchasing online is today (Wednesday), but tickets can be purchased at the door. Blair told ARLnow.com this morning that the event typically sells out, so online purchasing is strongly encouraged.
Fire at Pentagon Metro Station — A trash fire on the tracks at the Pentagon Metro station just before 8:00 this morning caused the station to fill with smoke. The fire was quickly extinguished by Arlington firefighters, but not before it resulted in delays on the Blue, Yellow and Green lines.
Capitals to Hold Blood Drive — The Washington Capitals will hold their annual summer blood drive at Kettler Capitals Iceplex in Ballston this weekend. The event will take place from 7:00 a.m. to 5:00 p.m. on Saturday. [Associated Press]
New Bus Route Serving Shirlington — Alexandria’s DASH will begin new service to the Shirlington Transit Center on Monday. The DASH AT9 will run from the Mark Center to Shirlington to Potomac Yard. [DASH Bus]
WJLA Sale Approved — The sale of Rosslyn-based TV station WJLA (ABC 7) has received FCC approval. Long-time owner Allbritton Communications is selling WJLA, NewsChannel 8 and seven other stations to Maryland-based Sinclair Broadcast Group. [Politico]
Flickr pool photo by Brian Allen
This Saturday, Jan. 4, the Washington Capitals will host their annual blood drive at Kettler Capitals Iceplex (627 N. Glebe Road) in Ballston.
From 7:00 a.m. to 5:00 p.m., donors can spend their time — about an hour — giving blood to Inova Blood Donor Services at the Iceplex. Donors will receive a Jay Beagle bobblehead and a Capitals T-shirt.
To schedule an appointment to donate, donors can go online and enter the sponsor name, “Washington Capitals,” or call Inova at 1-866-BLOODSAVES (1-866-256-6372).
Potential donors should be feeling healthy the day of the drive and should have not given blood in the last eight weeks, or 16 weeks if the donor gave double red cells.
This Saturday, November 9, blood donations will be collected from 7:00 a.m. to 5:00 p.m. Donors will receive a Braden Holtby bobblehead and a Capitals t-shirt.
In order to donate, a person must be feeling generally well on the day of the donation. Donors must be at least 16 years old (with parental consent), weigh at least 110 pounds and not have donated blood in the past 56 days (or 112 days for double red cells).
Donors can make appointments by calling 1-866-256-6372 or by going online and entering the sponsor name “Washington Capitals.” The whole process takes about one hour.