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Renovations on the Way for Former Capitol City Brewing Space, Though Future Remains Murky

There’s some renovation work on the way for the space once occupied by Capitol City Brewing in Shirlington, though the location’s long-term future remains unclear.

Sterling-based construction company Cypress Contracting secured permits in August to make “interior alterations” to the space at 2700 S. Quincy Street, part of the Village at Shirlington shopping center, county records show.

However, the permits do not make clear whether the changes are coming ahead of a new tenant moving into the space, with the documents noting that the changes are designed for “portions of an existing restaurant space” that will slightly reduce its square footage and involve a new “partition that creates a common service space.”

A spokeswoman for Federal Realty Investment Trust, the company that owns the shopping center, didn’t immediately respond to a request for comment on the location’s future.

Signs listing the space for lease still adorn its facade, as of Tuesday morning, and a small construction fence sits outside its storefront along Campbell Avenue.

Capitol City closed its Shirlington location back in March, after serving up brews there for the past 22 years. The chain’s D.C. location remains open, though the company filed for bankruptcy shortly after closing the Shirlington restaurant.

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I-CE-NY Coming to Shirlington Village

A unique ice cream chain that started in Thailand before expanding to New York City and then other U.S. cities is coming to Shirlington.

Signs are up in the windows of a storefront at 4150 Campbell Ave for I-CE-NY, which serves “smashed and rolled ice cream” with mix-ins like fruit, cookies and candy. That confirms our earlier report that the former Knits Etc. space would be filled by an ice cream shop.

I-CE-NY offers a number of signature pre-set ice cream and mix-in combos, including “Mango Sticky RI-CE” and “Strawberry Cheese-CE Cake,” per its website.

The business is currently hiring “ice cream crafters” for the new Shirlington location. So far there’s no word on an exact opening date.

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Dudley’s Inches Ever Closer to Opening, Begins Hiring

Dudley’s Sport and Ale in Shirlington is inching ever closer to opening, with plans to start hiring employees in the coming days.

Owner Reese Gardner told ARLnow that an “exact date” for opening of the long-awaited sports bar, located at 2766 S. Arlington Mills Drive, still remains unclear.

However, the restaurant did host a hiring fair this past Sunday (Sept. 23), and Gardner said the pub should be open soon. He’s been working since 2015 to bring the new bar to the space once occupied by The Bungalow Sports Grill, though he’s run into a series of delays over the years, some of which have been linked to the 3,000-square-foot rooftop space he’s building atop the 12,000-square-foot restaurant.

In a Facebook post earlier this month, the restaurant’s staff attributed some of the delays to more requirements from county planners, scuttling Gardner’s plans to open the bar in time for football season.

“Please understand we also want the venue to be open also but there have been continuous hurdles to overcome with this construction process,” staff wrote. “The latest is Arlington County would like us to add a dry sprinkler system to the outside rooftop area. The bottom floor is basically finished except for paint and small punch list stuff.”

Gardner added that the restaurant is now awaiting “final inspections” from the county, which will determine when exactly Dudley’s is able to open its doors.

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Sinkhole Opens in Shirlington Condo Complex Parking Lot

A small sinkhole seems to have opened in the parking lot of a Shirlington condo complex, snarling traffic in the neighborhood.

The hole, now several feet wide, is centered in a parking space near the 2900 block of S. Woodstock Street, where the Courtbridge I condominiums are located.

Elizabeth Hallman, who lives nearby, told ARLnow she first saw the sinkhole appear yesterday (Thursday), while a car was still parked in the space.

“At first, one of its back wheels started to dip down a little,” she said. “But just a little while later, it was really low, to the point where the front wheels were noticeably higher.”

She added that a “very skillful” tow truck driver was able to remove the car from the space a short time later.

As of this morning (Friday), crews were hard at work to patch up the hole. They’ve closed a section of S. Woodstock Street while those repairs continue.

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Lotus Grill and Noodles in Shirlington Closes

(Updated at 7:30 p.m.) Lotus Grill and Noodles, a Vietnamese restaurant in Shirlington, has closed its doors for good.

The restaurant has been on 4041 Campbell Ave in the heart of Shirlington since 2013. From its Facebook page:

We’d like to thank all our local patrons, loyal customers and our friends & family [who supported] us over the past 5 years, and even thanks to our Facebook fan just hitting “like” us and never had a chance to visit us once. Yes, we surely missed being a part of a nice area [like] Village of Shirlington. Adieu, ciao, sayonara, bye bye and thank you again.

The interior of the restaurant is currently empty, but the owners said at the door that they are currently showing off the space to new clients.

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New Crystal City Oktoberfest Planned for Next Month

Northern Virginia’s largest Oktoberfest is coming to Crystal City. On Sept. 29, 220 20th Street will play host to the first time to over 100 craft beers from over 50 regional breweries.

Tickets to the event are $30 if purchased in advance, or $45 at the door. Tickets give visitors entry into the festival and live entertainment, as well as ten beer sampling tickets along with a custom mug to fill.

VIP tickets, $50 in advance or $65 at the door, includes 15 beer sampling tickets, early access, a private tent and private bathrooms.

In addition to German food, the Oktoberfest will host various food trucks serving things like New York-style pizza or tacos.

But the Crystal City Oktoberfest isn’t the only one in Arlington this fall. In the wake of the closure of Capitol City Brewing, hosts of Shirlington’s annual Oktoberfest, New District Brewing is taking up the mantle and expanding its “Arlington ValleyFest” on Sept. 30.

The festival will take place at 2709 S. Oakland Street. While the event will have plenty of beer, the focus will also be on promoting local arts.

Meanwhile, on Oct. 20, the Copperwood Tavern on 4021 Campbell Ave. will also be hosting their “Shucktoberfest”, an event co-sponsored by Northern Neck’s Waverly Point Oyster Company, highlighting beer and oysters as a major draw.

Photo via Crystal City BID

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Prankster Reprograms Electronic Sign in Shirlington to Display ‘Fortnite’ Meme

For the last few days, an electronic sign meant to inform drivers about some upcoming roadwork in the Shirlington area has displayed a different message instead: “Ligma.”

A prankster seems to have reprogrammed the sign, located near the intersection of S. Walter Reed Drive and S. Arlington Mill Drive, sometime in the past few days. A tipster told ARLnow the sign’s been changed since at least this past Wednesday (Aug. 22).

The word itself seems to be a reference to a popular meme among fans of the video game Fortnite — its origins are perhaps best not explained on a family website.

When informed of the vandalized sign by ARLnow, county transportation spokeswoman Jessica Baxter explained that it belongs to a contractor working on improvements to S. Walter Reed Drive as part of a bid to “alert the public of the start of upcoming work.”

“The sign is supposed to reference the upcoming construction and date range of work,” Baxter said. “We’ve alerted our contractor to correct the sign as soon as possible.”

Construction on that work is supposed to start in early September, and last for close to a year after that.

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Shirlington Road Closure Planned for Signature Theatre Open House

Signature Theatre’s annual open house will take place in the Village at Shirlington between noon and 8:30 p.m. Sunday (Aug. 5), accompanied by a road closure.

The Arlington County Police Department will close Campbell Avenue from S. Arlington Mill Drive to S. Randolph Street from around 8 a.m. to 11 p.m. for the event.

Harris Teeter shoppers should plan to use the alternate entrance to the store’s parking garage while the road closure is in place, and street parking will be limited in the area.

The open house aims to introduce Signature Theatre’s 2018-19 season. Attractions include free performances, discounted tickets to upcoming shows and show merchandise at clearance prices.

Photo via Arlington County

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Construction on Dudley’s Picks Up Steam, As Opening Nears

Work on a long-awaited Shirlington sports bar seems to be picking up steam.

Dudley’s Sport and Ale, set to be located at 2766 S. Arlington Mill Drive in the Village at Shirlington, could be open in time for football season to kick off, according to a post on the restaurant’s Facebook page.

Owner Reese Gardner has worked for years now to open up a new pub in the space formerly occupied by The Bungalow Sports Grill, which closed in June 2015.

Construction Update! We are making a push for the start of regular season. Depending on county inspections we should make it.

Posted by Dudley's Sport and Ale on Wednesday, August 1, 2018

Gardner told ARLnow that he still doesn’t have a firm opening date ready, though he hopes to have “a solid date after a big round of inspections next week.” As of late May, he was eyeing a grand opening sometime this month for the restaurant.

Most of the delays have been driven by wrangling with county inspectors over the bar’s planned steel rooftop, Gardner’s stressed in the past. He’s hoping to have 3,000 square feet of rooftop bar space to sit atop the 12,000-square-foot restaurant.

Gardner’s company also owns Copperwood Tavern in Shirlington and Irish Whiskey Public House in D.C.

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County Looking for Four Mile Run Valley Planning Feedback

With a key bit of planning work on the Four Mile Run valley in Nauck wrapped up, the county is pushing ahead with the development of additional design guidelines for parks and other features in the area.

Arlington is currently soliciting feedback on both a park master plan and an area plan to guide the valley’s future, and will accept comments on both through Aug. 20.

The County Board approved a “policy framework” for the area in May, sketching out general goals for the remainder of the planning process. Chiefly, the work is focused on the redevelopment of Jennie Dean Park, the evolution of pedestrian and cycling options along roads like S. Four Mile Run Drive and the promotion of the arts industry in the area.

In the framework, the Board endorsed one plan for the redesign of Jennie Dean to account for the county’s plans to someday acquire WETA’s building in the area (3620 27th Street S.).

The Board expects to approve a plan calling for two planned baseball and softball fields to be aligned closer to S. Nelson Street, with new basketball and tennis courts on the site of the WETA building, even though it attracted some fierce pushback from some in the Nauck community. Now, the public will get another chance to weigh in on the design, including the county’s plans to add a new “gateway” to the park near the Weenie Beanie on S. Four Mile Run Drive.

The plans also include details on how the county might manage stormwater in the area moving forward, and future tweaks to features throughout Shirlington Park. The area’s dog park, however, won’t see big changes under the proposed plans, after the Board declined to move forward with any reduction in size for the park.

The Board expects to vote on a final parks plan in September, and could sign off on the area plan in November.

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Ping by Charlie Chiang’s Closed Permanently

Modern Asian restaurant Ping by Charlie Chiang’s is closed in The Village at Shirlington.

A posting to the restaurant’s 4060 Campbell Avenue door dated Monday (July 16) thanked customers for their patronage over the past three decades.

The Shirlington site remained open after Charlie Chiang’s closed in Crystal City in 2015.

As of this morning, Charlie Chiang’s website was down. There was no answer to the phone at Kwai, Charlie Chiang’s Tysons restaurant, yesterday evening (Thursday) or this morning, though its website is still active.

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BREAKING: Police Arrest Man Following Shirlington Standoff

(Updated at 4:50 p.m.) Arlington police have arrested a man after he barricaded himself inside an apartment in Shirlington while attempting to evade arrest.

Police were called to the 2700 block of S. Arlington Mill Drive, adjacent to the Village at Shirlington Shopping Center and the Arlington Trades Center, this afternoon (Thursday).

Officers were seeking 31-year-old Brian Covarrubias out of Alexandria, and managed to arrest him following an hour-long standoff, according to police spokeswoman Ashley Savage.

Covarrubias is now in custody in Alexandria, where he’s charged with robbery, malicious wounding, assault and battery, unlawful dissemination and “prevent summoning of law enforcement,” Savage said.

Police briefly had close off access to the area, but have since opened things back up.

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Firefighters Rescue County Parks Worker Stranded in Bucket Truck Near Shirlington

Firefighters were called out to a rescue a county parks and recreation worker from a malfunctioning bucket truck in the Shirlington dog park this morning (Thursday).

The man was stuck in the bucket after the arm of the truck stranded him near a tree at the park’s entrance at S. Four Mile Run Drive and S. Oxford Street.

First responders at the scene said the worker was not injured and brought down without incident.

Signs near the park said the area would be closed for tree trimming today.

The rescue effort briefly involved the closure of that section of the park, but it’s since reopened.

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Copperwood Tavern Planning ‘Shucktoberfest’ This Fall in Shirlington

Beer lovers will have not just one, but two Oktoberfest-themed events to enjoy in the Shirlington area this fall.

New District Brewing announced this week that it’s expanding its “Arlington ValleyFest” event to help pick up where Capitol City Brewing, long the hosts of an Oktoberfest celebration, left off after the brewpub closed this spring.

But restaurateur Reese Gardner tells ARLnow that he’ll also be hosting an Oktoberfest gathering along Campbell Avenue, in and around his Copperwood Tavern (4021 Campbell Avenue), ensuring that the Village at Shirlington will still have a fall beer festival even with Cap City gone.

Gardner is dubbing the event “Shucktoberfest,” as it will be co-sponsored by the Northern Neck’s Waverly Point Oyster Company, and it’s now set for Oct. 20. He says he secured an agreement from the shopping center’s landlord to host the event shortly after Cap City closed up shop in April, and recently finalized securing the necessary permits from the county.

Gardner said 19 Virginia breweries have committed to attend, many of which served up their suds at Cap City’s Oktoberfest events. Gardner says the event will feature “oyster tents” and other food options, as well as a “kids’ zone” and game area that will include cornhole.

Tickets will be available for the event on its website. Gardner is also looking for volunteers to help staff the festival.

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New District Brewing Plans ‘ValleyFest’ to ‘Pick Up the Mantle’ of Capitol City’s Oktoberfest

Capitol City Brewing might’ve closed up shop in Shirlington, but some of the area’s remaining brewmasters are trying to keep the spirit of the brewery’s popular “Oktoberfest” celebration alive.

Cap City started hosting an annual Oktoberfest event back in 1999 at its former location in the Village at Shirlington. The brewpub’s sudden closure back in March marked the end of that event, but the New District Brewing Company is hoping to fill the void with a similar event just across Four Mile Run.

The brewery is planning to host “Arlington ValleyFest” around its home on 2709 S. Oakland Street on Sept. 30, the same weekend Cap City traditionally convened Oktoberfest.

New District founder Mike Katrivanos told ARLnow that he envisions that ValleyFest can “pick up the mantle” of what Cap City started.

“With every end coming, there’s a new beginning,” Katrivanos said.

Katrivanos says New District hosted ValleyFest for the first time last year, but on a substantially smaller scale. They put on the festival the first weekend of November, but he says the chilly weather made that a “not very desirable date” moving forward.

But when he saw that Capitol City would be closing up shop, he decided to call around and check with other business owners to see if anyone else would be hosting Oktoberfest instead. He discovered that no one was especially interested in doing so, and he set about seeing if he could move up ValleyFest a bit.

Katrivanos quickly secured the county’s approval for the change, and even earned permission to double the festival in size. The event will now run nearly the length of S. Oakland Street, after it intersects with S. Four Mile Run Drive, running past the Shirlington Dog Park.

“We really hope to kind of replicate Oktoberfest, though hopefully not in the drunken mob type of sense,” Katrivanos said. “We’re not trying to get that crowd coming to consume too much, but we definitely are trying to create an enjoyable vibe centered around a large event.”

While Katrivanos says the event will have plenty of beer on hand, he also wants to be focused on local art, especially given the debate around the best ways to promote the arts in the Four Mile Run Valley as part of the county’s review of its plans for the area.

Katrivanos expects to have a variety of local artists on hand, as well as the Arlington Art Truck. He’s even planning a “pop-up” art installation he hopes will be a “Burning Man-style exhibit built in one day.”

He added the event will also include some of the same vendors who staffed Cap City’s Oktoberfest will be in attendance, with food trucks and even a “Ben and Jerry’s Dessert Truck” serving up treats.

The festival will run from 12 p.m. to 5 p.m. on Sept. 30. The event will be free, but New District is offering deals for beer tickets on the event’s website.

Photo via Facebook

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