Partisans Stake Out Sides on Country Club Tax Bill — There are two very different political perspectives on the state bill that would greatly lower the tax bills of Arlington’s two country clubs. On one hand, a writer on the conservative blog Bearing Drift says Arlington’s tax treatment of Army-Navy Country Club (which is covered by the bill along with Washington Golf & Country Club) is “manifestly unfair, and… impacts an especially distinguished and patriotic group of older folks.” On the other hand, progressive blog Blue Virginia says the bill, which passed the Virginia General Assembly last week, should be vetoed by Gov. Ralph Northam (D) because it would “lavish big $$$ on super-rich people, weaken local autonomy vs state AND set a horrible precedent.” [Bearing Drift, Blue Virginia]
County Launches Online Payments for Building Permits — After years of grumbles from local businesses, starting today Arlington County is accepting online payments for building permits. Payments can only be made online when one is submitting permits via the ePlan Review portal. [Arlington County]
Arlington Tourism Tax Bill Passes — “More than a dozen Republican members of the House of Delegates voted against, but Arlington’s effort to retain its ability to levy a surtax on hotel stays to pay for tourism promotion is headed to the governor’s desk.” [InsideNova]
Arlingtonian Making World Record Attempt — Crystal City resident and elite runner Tyler Andrews will attempt to break the 3o-year-old record for fastest 50K run next month. [STRIVE Trips]
First Down Marks Ninth Anniversary — First Down Sports Bar & Grill in Ballston is celebrating 9 years in business today. [ARLnow Events]
Nearby: Lebanese Taverna Closing in Bethesda — Arlington-based local restaurant chain Lebanese Taverna is closing its Bethesda location, citing an inability to reach agreement on a new lease with the landlord of Bethesda Row. [Bethesda Beat]
Photo courtesy Paola Lyle
Record Warm Temperatures — Yesterday’s high temperature of 82 degrees was the hottest it has ever been this early in the year. Records were set at all three D.C. area airports. [Twitter, Capital Weather Gang]
Fatal Fall in Clarendon — The man who fell from the roof of a building in Clarendon last week died, police confirmed Wednesday. “The subject was transported to the hospital by Arlington County Fire Department medics where he was later pronounced deceased,” said Arlington County Police spokeswoman Ashley Savage. “The police department is conducting an active death investigation and nothing in the investigation has lead us to categorize the death as suspicious.” [Twitter]
Vihstadt Expands Bipartisan Support — Former Arlington School Board member Sally Baird is the latest Democrat to endorse County Board member John Vihstadt in his reelection campaign. “We both know that maintaining top quality public schools is essential to Arlington’s future, and I’m honored to have her support,” Vihstadt said in a statement.
Photo courtesy James Mahony
Record High Low Temperature — The area has set another record for a warm low temperature. Yesterday, the low temperature at Reagan National Airport was 74 degrees, besting the previous Oct. 9 record of 72 degrees. [Twitter]
Record APS Enrollment — Enrollment at Arlington Public Schools for the 2017-2018 school year has been recorded at 26,927, surpassing the previous record set in 1963 in the midst of the Baby Boom generation. “The official count was up 789 students – 3 percent – from a year before, and has now risen 27 percent since the 2010-11 school year,” the Sun Gazette reported, though the final figure was well below the more than 27,000 projected. [InsideNova]
Record School Library Circulation — Print is apparently not dead yet, as 1.044 million books and other printed materials were checked out at Arlington Public Schools libraries last school year, a new record. It is the first time that count has exceeded 1 million. [InsideNova]
ACFD Getting New Ambulances — The Arlington County Fire Department is getting two brand-new ambulances for its fleet. [Twitter]
Courthouse Meeting Bowls in KidsPost — “Near Arlington’s courthouse, three unusual round wooden objects are attracting attention and exploration by people of all ages. Some think they look like amusement park rides. To Hadley Christiansen, 3, of Arlington, ‘they look like salad bowls.'” [Washington Post]
Meeting Set on High-Speed Rail Line — A public hearing is being held in Alexandria next Tuesday to gather public input on proposed high-speed rail service from D.C. to Richmond. [InsideNova]
Flickr pool photo by James L.
A record number of votes were cast Tuesday in Arlington in the Democratic gubernatorial primary, according to the Arlington County Democratic Committee.
Lt. Gov. Ralph Northam defeated Tom Perriello 56-44 statewide and 62-38 in Arlington. According to the committee, a record 28,167 votes were cast in Arlington.
Northam will face Republican Ed Gillespie in November’s general election.
In a press release, excerpted below, ACDC said the turnout record “is proof that Democrats across Virginia — and especially in Arlington — will vote for progressive, Democratic candidates in November.”
The Arlington County Democratic Committee (ACDC) congratulates the winners of the Democratic Primaries across the Commonwealth of Virginia, and in particular Ralph Northam, who has secured the nomination for Governor and Justin Fairfax, who has secured the nomination for Lieutenant Governor.
Arlingtonians came out again in record numbers to participate in the Democratic primary this year: 28,167 votes strong is the highest gubernatorial primary turnout in Arlington’s history, and 25,717 votes strong is historically high turnout for the lieutenant gubernatorial primary. The surge of enthusiasm in our party is proof that Democrats across Virginia — and especially in Arlington — will vote for progressive, Democratic candidates in November.
Four years ago in the Commonwealth, women’s reproductive rights, the right to marriage equality, and progress on renewable energy were all at risk. But in the four years since we regained the Governor’s mansion, our Governor has stood up for Planned Parenthood, supported marriage equality, expanded access to voter registration and absentee voting, and strengthened protection for victims of domestic violence. The ACDC is committed to building upon these achievements by electing a Democratic ticket and helping elect more Democrats to the House of Delegates.
The 42-year-old international shipbroker has set perhaps his most superhuman running record yet: he ran seven marathons on seven continents in seven days, each in under 2:55. Then he went for another 17-mile run just for fun.
The feat started with a 2:54:54 marathon in Antarctica, in -30 degree wind chills, and ended on a summer day in Sydney, Australia yesterday with a 2:45:31 time. In each of the seven marathons, Wardian placed first, besting a former Olympic distance runner, among others.
Even after seven days of nonstop flights, hotels and running, Wardian tells ARLnow.com that he’s “feeling pretty great.”
“It was a huge effort for sure and I just got food which is making sleepy but all good,” he said via email from Sydney. “I also just finished an extra 17 miles to get to 200 miles for the week and that was awesome. I have never run this far before in a week so I am pretty fired up.”
How did he keep his record-setting pace up all week?
“I really went for it each day and just ran my absolute hardest knowing that my body recovers really well between tough efforts,” he said. “I can’t believe it worked out and can’t wait to celebrate with family and friends.”
Wardian said he will be flying back to Arlington on Tuesday and will “work for a few days before heading to New Zealand for the Tarawera 100k” race.
His record-setting week, via Twitter:
— John Legere (@JohnLegere) January 28, 2017
— HUTC (@HUTCTV) January 26, 2017
Record for Rainfall Set — A record amount of rain fell on Arlington yesterday. Reagan National Airport recorded 2.49 inches of rainfall, overtaking the previous record of 2.20 inches in 1907. [Washington Post]
Sun Gazette Endorses Fallon, Lander — The Arlington Sun Gazette newspaper has endorsed Peter Fallon and James Lander for the Democratic County Board nomination. The paper said Fallon can be “prickly” but has the “strongest community background,” while Lander can sometimes “wing it” on important matters but has “specific and out-of-the-box proposals.” [InsideNova]
Hynes Endorses Lander, Schneider — County Board Chair Mary Hynes has endorsed James Lander and Andrew Schneider ahead of the June 9 Democratic County Board primary. Hynes said Lander, the current chair of the Arlington School Board, is “the best partner on the School Board I’ve ever had.” She said she’s been “impressed with [Schneider’s] diligence and openness to different perspectives, new ideas.” [InsideNova]
New Rooftop Deck for Rosslyn Buildings — Rosslyn’s Twin Towers office building complex is getting a new rooftop deck. Located at 1100 Wilson Blvd, the 5,000 square foot terrace will feature sweeping views of the D.C. skyline, for use by tenants of the 31-story buildings. Tenants of the complex include WJLA and Politico. The terrace is expected to be completed by next spring. [Virginia Business]
Rise in New Catholic Priests — Following a national trend, the Catholic Diocese of Arlington is seeing a rise in the ordination of new priests. Bishop Paul Loverde is scheduled to ordain seven men to the local priesthood on Saturday, bringing the number of new priests ordained since 2012 to 20. [Catholic Diocese of Arlington]
No Big Buses on the Pike, Yet — There’s a reason why there are no articulated buses running down the Columbia Pike corridor, at least not yet. For one, standard bus service is sufficient at this time. Another reason: there’s no local storage space for big articulated buses. [Greater Greater Washington]
Arlington Students to Attend Governor’s School — Twenty Arlington Public Schools students will attend the prestigious Governor’s Schools or Governor’s Foreign Language Academy this summer. [Arlington Public Schools]
Flickr pool photo by Jason OX4
A new world record may have been set in Arlington over the weekend.
A D.C. man claims to have set the world record for most pullups done in a 24 hour period, recording the feat on video at the Ballston Crossfit gym at 1110 N. Glebe Road.
John Bocek, a D.C. resident, reported completed 5,801 pullups, setting a new unofficial record. The Guinness World Records still has to approve Bocek’s record before it is an official world record, said Tucker Jones, the owner of Ballston Crossfit.
The last official record was 5,101 pullups set by Michael Tufo on May 3 of this year.
“He smashed the record,” Jones said of Bocek.
Bocek started his pullups at the crossfit gym at 6 p.m. on Saturday and finished at 6 p.m. on Sunday. He initially set out two years ago to break the world record, but the number of pullups for the record increased a couple of times, he said.
His original goal was 5,000 pullups but last month the record was broken again, prompting Bocek to raise his goal to 6,000. While he did not reach that goal, he was very happy with 5,801 repetitions.
“That’s a lot of pullups over 24 hours,” Jones said.
Three hours from the end of his record attempt, an article surfaced saying another unofficial record of more than 5,700 pullups had been set, so Bocek knew he had to make it past that mark to set the record.
At that point, he was past his physical limit but the support from family, friends and viewers around the world kept him going.
“It was probably the toughest thing I’ve done,” Bocek said.
Via donations, the record attempt raised money for a cause championed by Bocek: the Panama Mission Foundation, a non-profit that builds churches and works to spread the Christian gospel in Panamanian rainforest villages.
Bocek says he trained throughout the two years for the pullup challenge, training at different gyms and at least once a week at Ballston Crossfit. He would go to the gym in the middle of the night and train for about six hours, Jones recounted. Training in the middle of the night helped him get ready for doing pullups for 24 hours without sleep.
The training was more intense than his prior preparation for the 100-mile marathons, Bocek said. His strategy for breaking the record was to do 2,500 pullups in the first seven hours, which he was confident of because of his training, then sets of 500 between 15 minute breaks.
As he neared the end, it got increasingly difficult, and Bocek said there were repetitions that didn’t count because he couldn’t get his chin above the bar.
Although he reported being very sore on Monday, Bocek said would “absolutely” be up for another world record attempt, should anyone break his new record.
Screen capture via YouTube
Arlington Loses Lowest Unemployment Crown — Arlington’s years-long streak of having the lowest unemployment rate in Virginia has ended. In November Falls Church had the lowest jobless rate, at 3 percent, to 3.1 percent for Arlington. Statewide, Virginia’s unemployment rate fell from 4.8 percent in October to 4.5 percent in November. [InsideNova]
Arlington Man Pleads Guilty to Drug Trafficking — Arlington resident Anthony Tatum, 36, has pleaded guilty to drug trafficking, money laundering and other related crimes, according to federal prosecutors.Tatum and a co-conspirator were accused of distributing cocaine and heroin, primarily in Maryland. Tatum, who agreed to forfeit $108 million in cash, vehicles, jewelry and other items, reportedly lived in a Pentagon City apartment building. [Patch]
Pinkberry to Close? — The future of Arlington’s Pinkberry frozen yogurt store is uncertain. The local Pinkberry franchisee has filed for Chapter 7 bankruptcy liquidation. The franchisee, which has stores in D.C., National Harbor, Clarendon and elsewhere in Northern Virginia, cited debts of more than $1.2 million in the filing. Those debts include $44,121 in back taxes owed to Arlington County. [Washington Business Journal]
Wardian Sets New Record — Arlington resident Michael Wardian, 40, has set a new world record for the fastest indoor 50K. Wardian covered the distance in 3:06:07 at a 200-meter indoor track in Hagerstown, Md. That shatters his former world record, of 3:12:13, set at the Thomas Jefferson Community Center in Arlington. [Herald-Mail]
Arlington Native Releases Music Video — Arlington-born rapper C-Luv has released a new music video for his track “Grind.” The video features scenes shot around Arlington, including in a skatepark, Wakefield High School and in the Nauck neighborhood. [YouTube – NSFW]
Flickr pool photo by Dennis Dimick
(Updated at 10:00 a.m.) Three records fell Sunday at Thomas Jefferson Community Center during the annual Grant-Pierce Indoor Marathon & 50 Kilometer races, two of them broken by Arlington residents.
Chuck Engle, 43, won the indoor marathon in 2:43:49, setting an unofficial world record for fastest indoor marathon time ever by someone older than 40, according to Arlington running guru Jay Jacob Wind, who organized the event.
Wind broke his own record for fastest indoor 50-kilometer race by a runner 60 or older, completing the distance in 4:23:45. The 64-year-old Wind ran the same race, and set the same record, last year in 4:34:14.
The women’s champion on Sunday, Washington D.C. resident Kristen Jaremback, ran the 16th-fastest women’s indoor marathon of all time, finishing in 3:25:28, according to Wind. Jaremback didn’t stop running however, continuing to complete the 50-kilometer race — roughly 31 miles — in 4:03:43, an American women’s record and the sixth-fastest indoor 50-kilometer time ever run by a woman, according to records kept by the Association of Road Racing Statisticians (ARRS).
Engle unofficially broke the record set by German marathoner Uwe Langer, who ran the indoor marathon in 2:44:58.7 last year. Engle’s performance puts him at 17th-fastest of all time, according to ARRS. The world record holder regardless of age is Arlington’s own Michael Wardian, who ran the 26.2 miles in 2:27:21 in 2010, more than seven minutes faster than the next time on ARRS’ list.
The race was the fifth annual running of the indoor marathon and 50-kilometer race. Marathoners circled the community center track 211 times. Participants in the 50K circled the track 250 times.
Tax Delinquency Rate Hits Record Low — Arlington County Treasurer Frank O’Leary and his staff managed to get the county’s tax delinquency rate down to a record low 0.41 percent for the fiscal year that ended June 30. “Just amazing — phenomenal, absolutely fabulous,” O’Leary was quoted as saying during a celebration of the accomplishment last night. [Sun Gazette]
Remembering Arlington’s Nazi Past — He wasn’t very popular with his fellow residents, but George Rockwell, the founder of the once Arlington-based American Nazi Party, remains part of Arlington lore. Before being shot to death in the Dominion Hills Shopping Centre, Rockwell helped organize a picket of Mario’s Pizza House on Wilson Boulevard for refusing Nazi party members service while continuing to serve black customers. The Nazis also made a bomb threat against the Arlington Unitarian Church. [Arlington Magazine]
Adult Soccer Clinic Registration — Registration is open for a six-week adult soccer clinic for men and women, to be held at Washington-Lee High School. The clinic is primarily intended for adults who want to learn how to play soccer or who haven’t played since childhood. [Arlington County]
Photo courtesy Brendan P. Childs
In May, the airport served 1.88 million passengers, breaking the previous record of 1.85 million passengers set in August 2012. The May passenger figure represented a 9 percent increase from one year prior, according to the Sun Gazette.
The Metropolitan Washington Airports Authority said the increase in passengers was “largely driven by service additions on US Airways, JetBlue Airways, Alaska Airlines and new carriers Southwest Airlines and Virgin America beginning domestic service.”
Voter Turnout Just Missed Record — A record number of voters turned out in Arlington for the Nov. 6 election, but the turnout just missed the record for percentage of active voters who cast ballots. In the end, 84.6 percent of active voters in Arlington cast ballots, just shy of the 84.9 percent active voter turnout for the 1992 general election. [Sun Gazette]
County to Hold Recycling Chat Today — Arlington County officials will be holding an online chat about residential recycling today. The “Ask the Expert” chat will be conducted via Facebook from noon to 1:00 p.m. [Facebook]
JBG Installs EV Chargers — Property owner JBG has installed a number of electric vehicle charges at its Arlington properties. The company says charging stations have been installed at the Hilton Crystal City (2399 Jefferson Davis Highway) and at the Rosslyn Gateway buildings (1911/1901 N. Lynn Street). The charging stations, part of the Blink charger network, offer priority parking to electric vehicle owners, according to a press release.
(Updated at 4:10 p.m.) Arlington County set a new voting record yesterday.
Nearly 118,000 people voted in Tuesday’s general election, the largest numerical turnout on record in Arlington. Percentage-wise, however, the turnout came up just shy of a previous record.
About 83 percent of active registered voters cast a ballot yesterday, according to unofficial figures cited by Arlington County Registrar of Voter Linda Lindberg, compared to the record 85 percent active voter turnout during the presidential contest between George H.W. Bush and Bill Clinton in 1992. Just over 83,000 ballots were cast in Arlington during that record-setting election; the county’s population has grown considerably since.
The wait times to vote at some polling stations yesterday exceeded two hours. Lindberg noted that “the last voter didn’t finish voting until about 9 p.m.,” since those in line before the 7:00 p.m. Virginia poll closing time are still allowed to vote. As of this morning, absentee ballots were still being counted.
In a brief interview last night with ARLnow.com, Arlington County Electoral Board Chairman Charlene Bickford suggested that the county may need to bolster its election operation for the next presidential race, four years from now.
“We’re definitely going to have to look at the number of [voting] machines we have,” she said.
Photo courtesy @thePhilipJones
The National Weather Service has issued a Heat Advisory and an Excessive Heat Watch for Arlington and the surrounding region.
With temperatures expected to exceed 100 degrees today and tomorrow (Saturday), forecasters are warning of possible heat-related illness. According to NBC 4, by Sunday this will be the longest heat wave — 11 straight days above 95 degrees — in D.C. area history.
HEAT ADVISORY REMAINS IN EFFECT UNTIL 8 PM EDT THIS EVENING… … EXCESSIVE HEAT WATCH REMAINS IN EFFECT FROM SATURDAY AFTERNOON THROUGH SATURDAY EVENING…
* HEAT INDICES… AROUND 105 THIS AFTERNOON. AROUND 110 SATURDAY AFTERNOON.
* MAXIMUM TEMPERATURES… AROUND 100 THIS AFTERNOON. AROUND 100 TO 105 SATURDAY AFTERNOON.
* IMPACT… HIGH RISK OF HEAT EXHAUSTION OR OTHER HEAT-RELATED ILLNESS FOR THOSE WITHOUT AIR-CONDITIONING OR THOSE SPENDING TIME OUTDOORS FOR AN EXTENDED PERIOD.
A HEAT ADVISORY AND AN EXCESSIVE HEAT WATCH MEAN THAT A PERIOD OF HOT TEMPERATURES IS EXPECTED. THE COMBINATION OF HOT TEMPERATURES AND HIGH HUMIDITY WILL CREATE A SITUATION IN WHICH HEAT ILLNESSES ARE POSSIBLE. DRINK PLENTY OF FLUIDS… STAY IN AN AIR-CONDITIONED ROOM… STAY OUT OF THE SUN… AND CHECK IN ON RELATIVES AND NEIGHBORS.
TAKE EXTRA PRECAUTIONS IF YOU WORK OR SPEND TIME OUTSIDE. WHEN POSSIBLE… RESCHEDULE STRENUOUS ACTIVITIES TO EARLY MORNING OR EVENING. KNOW THE SIGNS AND SYMPTOMS OF HEAT EXHAUSTION AND HEAT STROKE. WEAR LIGHTWEIGHT AND LOOSE-FITTING CLOTHING WHEN POSSIBLE AND DRINK PLENTY OF WATER.
TO REDUCE RISK DURING OUTDOOR WORK… THE OCCUPATIONAL SAFETY AND HEALTH ADMINISTRATION RECOMMENDS SCHEDULING FREQUENT REST BREAKS IN SHADED OR AIR-CONDITIONED ENVIRONMENTS. ANYONE OVERCOME BY HEAT SHOULD BE MOVED TO A COOL AND SHADED LOCATION. HEAT STROKE IS AN EMERGENCY – CALL 9 1 1.
Last time we checked in with William Polly, the 10-year-old Penrose resident had just set a new sport stacking world record and was showing off his skills on the Tonight Show with Jay Leno.
Polly, now 11, is still up to his winning ways in the world of sport stacking — a competitive sport that involves stacking cups in set formations — or “sequences” — as quickly as possible.
Last month Polly set a new world record in the “individual cycle” competition. Unfortunately, his record was quickly broken by fellow young sport stacking phenom, William Orrell.
Polly now has his name on three of the five sport stacking world records.