A bit of Ireland is coming to Campbell Avenue in Shirlington with the return of the annual Beckett’s Celtic Festival this Saturday, Sept. 19.
“The Beckett’s Celtic Festival is a celebration of Celtic food, drink and culture. It is an opportunity for the community to come together, enjoy themselves and take in the very best of Irish music, dance, food, drink and all around ‘craic,'” said Daniel Perranzas, a manger at festival host Samuel Beckett’s Irish Gastro Pub (2800 S. Randolph Street).
The festival runs from noon to 7 p.m. and there will be about 20 vendors lining Campbell Avenue, selling beer and food. Samuel Beckett’s will have a vendor stand and will sell Irish delicacies like shepherd’s pie, bangers and mash, corned beef reuben’s, Irish sausage rolls and bratwurst, Perranzas said.
Vendors will sell Irish draft beers, including Guinness, Smithwicks and Harp, along with Magner’s Cider and wine, he said.
There will also be live music and Irish dancing, both outside and inside the pub.
“The Celtic Festival was started three years ago as a way to connect with a community that has shown us such great warmth and hospitality and also to emphasize the deep connection that Irish heritage and culture holds within the many residents of this and every community,” Perranzas said.
The Arlington County Police Department will close Campbell Avenue from S. Randolph Street to the parking garage at the Harris Teeter in Shirlington (4250 Campbell Ave.) from 8 a.m. to 7 p.m. on Saturday for the festival.
School Board Candidates Not Ruling Parkland Out — Two candidates for Arlington School Board say they aren’t ruling anything out — including use of parkland — for the building of new schools. Independent Green-endorsed candidate Brooklyn Kinlay said it would “be a tragedy” to use parkland. Reid Goldstein, who has the Democratic endorsement, said the school system is “not moving fast enough” to address the school capacity issue. [InsideNova]
Ray’s Company Files for Bankruptcy — A company affiliated with the popular Ray’s the Steaks and Ray’s Hell Burger restaurants in Arlington has filed for Chapter 11 bankruptcy. The restaurants’ operations are reportedly not affected. [Washington Business Journal]
Marymount Tops Diversity List — Marymount University ranks No. 1 for ethnic diversity among regional universities in the South, according to the new 2016 “Best Colleges” rankings from U.S. News and World Report. “It’s all part of our ongoing commitment to creating a culture of engagement that fosters intellectual curiosity, service to others and a global perspective in our students,” said Marymount President Matthew Shank. [Marymount University]
New Civic Association Forms — Arlington has a new civic association. The Arlington County Civic Federation has added the new Shirlington Civic Association as a member. Also, the Columbia Heights West Civic Association has changed its name to the Arlington Mill Civic Association. [InsideNova]
Newspaper Columnist Denied Lemonade — “Our Man in Arlington” columnist Charlie Clark received questionable service after ordering a 50-cent lemonade from a children’s lemonade stand near Virginia Hospital Center last week. [Falls Church News-Press]
Flickr pool photo by Erinn Shirley
The temporary housing of buses is one of the topics on the agenda for a Sept. 1 community meeting, said county spokeswoman Catherine Matthews. The meeting will also discuss street parking, the upcoming Shirlington Crescent-Four Mile Run planning study and Jennie Dean Park.
“The meeting on September 1 (with residents from Nauck, Shirlington and Fairlington) will really just be to communicate about and implement some community planning efforts and address some outstanding neighborhood concerns,” Matthews said in an email.
County officials will attend the meeting to answer questions about any of the agenda items, Matthews said.
Buses will be housed at LaPorte property until 2017, when the new facility at the corner of S. Eads and 32nd Streets is expected to be finished, she said.
“In terms of parking buses here, the County does not foresee any major changes or delays to existing traffic patterns. All of our ART buses are CNG (compressed natural gas) powered and run on natural gas, making these buses cleaner and quieter in operation,” Matthews said.
Construction to build the new ART facility begins Sept. 9 and is expected to last 18 months, according to the project’s website. The new two-story facility will have spaces for bus maintenance, bus washing, a gas station and parking.
The meeting will also discuss planning efforts for the Jennie Dean Park and Shirlington Crescent-Four Mile Run area. Both projects are in preplanning phases, Matthews said.
The Shirlington Crescent-Four Mile Run Planning Study is planned for 2015, according to the project’s website, and will look at the land use in the area.
“The goal will be to develop a vision and long-term planning guidance for the area, which includes primary industrially zoned properties,” Matthews said in an email. “We will be examining potential land use changes, transportation improvements; and environmental issues, given the proximity of the Four Mile stream.”
At the same time, the county will also be creating a master plan for Jennie Dean Park, but the project is still in the early stages, she said.
The Bungalow Sports Grill closed in June but a replacement is already in the works. The owners of Copperwood Tavern, another Shirlington restaurant, are planning a new sports bar called “Dudley’s Sport and Ale.”
Dudley’s will open in the 12,000 square foot Bungalow space at 2766 S. Arlington Mill Drive), but amazingly the owners also planning a big addition. The sports bar will have a 3,000 square foot rooftop bar — a first for Shirlington.
In a separate post, Gardner said Washingtion Nationals General Manager Mike Rizzo has joined his ownership team. Gardner’s company also owns a trio of D.C. bars: Irish Whiskey Public House, Orange Anchor and the soon-to-open Union Social.
Dudley’s is hoping to open early next year, according to its Facebook page.
Arlington Inmate Dies — A 48-year-old convict died early Saturday morning in the Arlington County Detention Facility in Courthouse. The man, who had a “history of medical issues,” was found unresponsive in his cell and rushed to the hospital, where he was pronounced dead. [Arlington County]
More Sequestration Could Hit Virginia Hard — Virginia, and in particular Northern Virginia, is bracing for more sequestration cuts to the Defense Department, which are set to take effect in five weeks. Virginia’s two U.S. Senators are pushing for new budget legislation to replace the sequester. [Washington Post]
Cemetery Superintendent Removed — One year after taking the position, Arlington National Cemetery superintendent Jack E. Lechner has been given the boot. The Army says Lechner’s job performance was unsatisfactory. [Washington Post]
DAK Chicken Opens in Shirlington — DAK Chicken, a Korean-style chicken restaurant, welcomed customers on Friday for its soft opening. In addition to chicken wings the new Shirlington eatery offers other Korean and Asian-fusion dishes like kimchi, bulgogi and ramen. [Northern Virginia Magazine, Facebook]
Arlington Company Makes Fortune List — Courthouse-based Opower has made Fortune Magazine’s inaugural “Change The World” list. Opower is ranked No. 45 on the list of 51 companies “that have made a sizable impact on major global social or environmental problems as part of their competitive strategy.” How long Opower remains in Arlington remains a question: the company is currently considering a move to the District. [Fortune]
The eighth annual Wags N’ Whiskers event will be held from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. and will feature more than 60 exhibitions, ranging from pet supplies to onsite adoptions.
In addition to shopping for food, treats, toys and other pet goods, owners can get their pets’ portrait taken for $5. There will also be strolling entertainment and kids activities, including face painting and balloon art. Visitors are encouraged to bring their pets with them.
The Arlington County Police Department will close Campbell Avenue and S. Randolph Street from 5:30 a.m. to 7 p.m. for the event. Campbell Avenue will be closed from S. Quincy Street to the parking garage in front of the Harris Teeter (4250 Campbell Avenue). S. Randolph Street will be closed from Arlington Mill Drive to the alley just south of Campbell Avenue. Street parking will also be limited.
The restaurant is envisioned as following in the footsteps of ARP-managed restaurant Cafe Tu Tu Tango in Orlando, Florida, a small-plates eatery which boasts the theme of “Food, Art, Fun.” The company describes Palette 22 as Cafe Tu Tu Tango designed “for the local, millennial crowd,” and says the restaurant will emphasize authentic international street food, street art and a creative craft bar program.
According to Paul Beckmann, the architect on the project, the building permits for the restaurant were submitted on July 13 and are currently under review. Beckmann anticipates that construction will start mid to late August and last about three months.
Palette 22 is opening in the space formerly occupied by Italian restaurant Extra Virgin, which closed in 2013.
“The space right now is pretty rough,” said Beckmann. “Much of the equipment has more than lived out its life span. We’re having to clear out the entire space.”
Once completed, the restaurant will be able to seat 168 inside and an additional 34 on an outdoor patio running along Campbell Avenue.
This will be ARP’s first restaurant in Arlington. The company currently owns Old Town Alexandria restaurant The Majestic, manages Virtue Feed & Grain, and has plans to open Lena’s Wood-Fired Pizza & Tap in Alexandria in September.
Photos via Beckman Architects
Arlington County has enjoyed near-perfect weather today, with blue skies, plenty of sun and a high of only 82. What better way to celebrate the end of a beautiful summer day than to attend one of three outdoor concerts taking place this evening?
Summer concert series Rock at the Row kicks off tonight at 7 p.m. in Pentagon Row’s plaza area (1101 S. Joyce Street) with Bon Jovi cover band Slippery When Wet. The concert series also includes a VIP section with craft beers and food samples.
Residents less enamored of Bon Jovi can head over to Rosslyn for its “Throwback Thursday” concert in Freedom Park (1101 Wilson Blvd). Tonight’s concert features Baltimore-based cover band Sly 45. It’s the last scheduled Throwback Thursday concert until September.
Also tonight, the Village at Shirlington (2700 S. Quincy Street) will hold its weekly Shirlala music festival, which started in June. Playing from 6:30-8:30 p.m. will be alternative rock band Lloyd Dobler Effect. In addition to the live music, there will be $5 wine tasting courtesy of local cheese and wine bar Cheesetique.
All three concert series are free and open to the public. Rock at the Row’s lineup was announced earlier this summer. Shirlala’s remaining performances are below.
- July 23: Paul Pfau (pop, rock and blues)
- July 30: Ewabo (reggae and tropical steel drums)
- August 6: The Morrison Brothers Band (Southern rock)
- August 13: Dan Haas Trio (pop rock)
- August 20: King Teddy (swing)
- August 27: Sandra Dean Band ft. Daryl Davis (50s and 60s tribute)
Photo via lloyddoblereffect.com
Le Village Marché, a Parisian-inspired store in Shirlington Village, is expanding across the river just in time for Bastille Day tomorrow (July 14).
Owner Angela Phelps opened the store’s second location in Cathedral Commons (3318 Wisconsin Ave. NW) in D.C. on June 25.
The new store is very similar to the one in Shirlington, Phelps said, though it stocks more furniture. Both stores have a French theme and sell items that range from French glassware to cookbooks and doormats.
“It appeals to people, not just because we have great items, but it’s like a trip to Paris without actually going there,” Phelps said.
Developers in Cathedral Commons reached out to Phelps, prompting her to open the second location, she said.
For local Francophiles looking to throw a Bastille Day party, Phelps recommended serving French baguettes, wines and cheeses, perhaps followed by a French martini and an entrée Coq au vin for the party. She also recommended some French decor and little gifts, like fluers de lis, which she bien sûr carries at the store.
On the 14th, both stores are offering a free gift with a $25 purchase, Phelps said.
The Village at Shirlington announced late last month that DAK Chicken would be opening in the former Bonsai space on Campbell Avenue.
“DAK Chicken, a modern Korean fusion restaurant will offer Korean style soy garlic, spicy, or honey glazed chicken, as well as a variety of Korean style fusion food and unique Korean drinks,” the shopping center said via Facebook.
The concept is similar to Bonchon, a Korean-style chicken restaurant that opened on N. Pershing Drive in Lyon Park in 2013.
ABC Distributors, Inc., a lumber yard near Shirlington, will be closing its doors at the end of the summer.
The 50-year-old company is currently holding a liquidation sale to sell off the store’s entire stock. The sale started today and will last about six weeks, said Bernard Lynch, the president of the company and one of the owners.
Merchandise has been marked down by 10 to 40 percent, depending on the item, and prices will be reduced as the sale goes on, Lynch said.
“So everything has to go,” he said.
The store is also raffling off a 60-inch Visio Smart TV; customers can enter to win when they buy something.
The business’ closure comes after the owners of the property it sits on decided to sell. ABC Distributors is a part owner, but it owns a much smaller percentage of the property than those that decided to sell, Lynch said.
“It’s been a struggle, to be honest with you, in the last seven years to stay in business,” he said.
The home building business has been struggling as well after housing market crashes, Lynch said. He has seen multiple customers who were contractors go out of business or lose their jobs. And others just do not have the need to shop for housing materials as often because fewer people are building houses, at least according to Lynch.
ABC Distributors must be out of its location by Sept. 1, Lynch said. There are no current plans to bring the business to a new location.
The property was bought by an investors group, but Lynch said he does not know what their plans are.
Chester’s Billiards Bar & Grill will be located at 2620 S. Shirlington Road, which has been without a restaurant tenant since Lucy’s closed in December 2013.
Co-owner Derrick Fulghum, Sr. told ARLnow.com today that he’s hoping to open by mid-August, should all go well with his permits and licenses.
Chester’s will largely pick up where Lucy’s left off. No interior construction of note is planned — the pool tables and bar will be in about the same place. Two things that are changing: more of a focus on live entertainment and on families.
Fulghum said he will be applying for a live entertainment permit, to allow him to offer performances by standup comics, bands and DJs.
As for his customer base, Fulghum said he hopes to attract families and local residents around the Shirlington area. That’s a bit of a contrast from Lucy’s, which proudly displayed the motto “Shrews. Brews. Cues.”
“I have a family and I’m planning on bring them here,” he said. “It will be very inviting, a fun atmosphere. We look forward to giving back… and becoming part of the Shirlington community.”
Chester’s will serve American cuisine — “good food,” Fulghum promises. He said local residents he’s talked to have been positive about the concept. Plus, he’ll benefit from reduced competition: The Bungalow Sports Grill in Shirlington, which had billiards tables, closed last month.
This will be Fulghum’s second South Arlington and third D.C. area establishment. He and his business partner own Andalusia Tea Room, a hookah bar in Crystal City, as well as a bar and grill in Rockville, he said.
Photo via Google Maps
The Jewish Community Center of Northern Virginia is bringing its annual Israel Fest to Arlington this weekend.
The free event — dubbed Israel@67 — is billed as a celebration of Israel and Israeli culture. It will take place from noon to 5 p.m. on Sunday at the Village in Shirlington.
The event will include live entertainment, Israeli dancing and hands-on activities. There will be food to purchase and an Israeli-styled market.
While the festival has been held in the past in other Northern Virginia locations, this is the first time it has come to Arlington, said Laurie Albert, the center’s Director of Community Engagement.
“The location is wonderful,” she said.
The JCC decided to bring the festival to Arlington because it is a family-friendly area and the organization would reach a community it had not previously, Albert said.
The event will feature nine live musical acts, including Israeli pop singer Hadar and singer-songwriter Yoni Jahasi. There will also be a teen area with a live DJ.
More than 10 synagogues and community partners will have booths for visitors to stop by, and there will also be a moon bounce and balloon artists for children.
To accommodate the festival, Arlington County Police will shut down Campbell Avenue in Shirlington from S. Quincy Street to S. Randolph Street between 5:00 a.m. to 8:00 p.m.
Johnny Rockets has closed its doors in Shirlington.
A sign posted in the window of the retro burger restaurant at 4251 Campbell Ave this weekend stated that it had closed its doors permanently. No reason for the closure was given.
Johnny Rockets is the seventh business to close in Shirlington since last October. Other shuttered businesses have blamed high rent and slow business.
Photo top via Google Maps. Photo right courtesy @EdwardRyder.
‘Hula Girl’ to Open Shirlington Restaurant — The founder of the Hula Girl food truck, which specializes in Hawaiian style food, will be opening a new brick-and-mortar restaurant in the former Aladdin’s Eatery space in Shirlington. Mikala Brennan says Shirlington is “a very friendly place for families and dogs and everyone, and I always thought it’d be a great fit for what I do.” [Eater]
Bike to Work Day is Today — Hundreds of people stopped by the half-dozen Arlington pit stops for Bike to Work Day this morning. Among them were Rep. Don Beyer (D-Va.) and a guy on an old-timey penny farthing.
Candidates Want Manager to Live in Arlington — The candidates for Arlington County Board said they would like Arlington’s next county manager to live in Arlington. Retiring county manager Barbara Donnellan lives in Clifton, Va. [InsideNova]