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by Katie Pyzyk October 4, 2017 at 3:30 pm 0

Police have arrested a man suspected of stealing from a woman on S. Glebe Road this afternoon.

The suspect reportedly stole an “unattended bag” from a woman who was shopping in the Unit block of S. Glebe Road. Although police do not release the names of businesses where crimes occur, that block is home to a Goodwill store, among others.

The suspect fled the scene and police took him into custody nearby, on the 100 block of S. Glebe Road. An ARLnow tipster who lives near the arrest scene said numerous police vehicles responded and officers urged neighbors to lock their cars and doors.

ACPD says the investigation is ongoing but there is “no threat to the public.”

Update at 10:50 a.m. — From an ACPD crime report:

GRAND LARCENY (Significant), 2017-10040137, Unit block of S. Glebe Road. At approximately 11:26 a.m. on October 4, police responded to the report of a larceny that had just occurred. Upon arrival, it was determined that a female victim was shopping when her purse was stolen from inside a shopping cart. When witnesses attempted to stop the suspect, he fled the area on foot into the National Foreign Affairs Training Center where he was detained until Arlington County Police arrived on scene. James Mitchell, 53, of No Fixed Address was arrested and charged with Grand Larceny. He was held on no bond.

Photo courtesy Amy Collins

by Chris Teale September 26, 2017 at 2:45 pm 0

A Pentagon City resident has launched a social media campaign against abandoned Costco shopping carts, which she says are a persistent “eyesore” for the neighborhood.

Sarah Wohl started posting from the @CartsOfPCArl Twitter account on September 20, after walking around the neighborhood with her husband and finding it “comical” to see so many. She has tweeted about two dozen photos of abandoned carts in the week since the account launched — showing carts near apartment buildings, next to parking meters and outside restaurants.

“I’ve lived in Pentagon City for a couple of years, and since I’ve moved there, there’s always been Costco shopping carts everywhere, and it is an eyesore as you walk around,” Wohl said. “They’ll be by cars, by apartment buildings and blocks away from Costco. They’re kind of everywhere.”

NBC Washington reported earlier this year on residents’ renewed efforts to improve matters, including writing to Costco and documenting the abandoned carts.

And past online petitions have urged Costco to “take responsibility” for the carts left behind by their shoppers.

“These abandoned shopping carts create safety hazards and bring the overall image of our community down,” reads one petition from four years ago. “Please assist me in making our community a better place that doesn’t have shopping carts littering parking lots, store fronts, streets and our local park.”

Wohl said things haven’t improved, and that the responsibility must be shared between Costco and those who shop there.

“I think it’s because people live around there and don’t want to drive to Costco, but you can’t really carry bags of stuff from Costco home, so it’s easier to just take a cart and bring it home and then it’s a pain to bring it back,” she said. “Or people that drive from elsewhere may just take the cart to their car, which they don’t park in the Costco parking lot because that’s always a headache and they leave it by wherever they park their car.”

So Wohl decided to shine a light on the problem in her own way, using humor to highlight the neighborhood issue.

“It started as a silly thing, just putting it on Twitter, but it’s part of a larger problem,” she said.

For residents, visitors and businesses alike, Wohl said the sight of so many abandoned carts damages the neighborhood’s character.

“I think it detracts from the community and detracts from Pentagon City and Crystal City, because it looks like an eyesore and it looks a little trashy having these carts everywhere,” Wohl said.

A Costco spokeswoman declined to comment.

Photos via Sarah Wohl (@CartsOfPCArl)

by ARLnow.com Sponsor August 22, 2017 at 5:00 pm 0

The hustle and bustle of the holidays are rapidly approaching the D.C., Maryland and Virginia area. The days are shorter, the leaves are beginning to change color and local businesses are pushing their holiday marketing efforts.

When we discussed how to increase your revenue without relying on discounts and sales, we mentioned the need for creating personalized and memorable customer experiences. Holidays present a great opportunity for marketing to your customers around a topic that is relevant, that they’re fully aware of and that they’re interested in.

Here are a few simple ways to get creative with your local holiday marketing that works in conjunction with your digital signage and will keep your clients interested in following your brand.

Oktoberfest: Whether you choose to don Lederhosen or not, it’s hard to ignore that Oktoberfest events have continued to gain popularity in the local area, especially amongst millennials. Take advantage of this celebration by promoting happy hour specials or outdoor Biergarten parties.

Lighting of the National Christmas Tree: This time-honored tradition has been a staple of Washington Christmas celebrations for more than 90 years. Create templates that show off your holiday and American spirit for this historic event by displaying a slideshow of previous Christmas Tree lighting ceremonies alongside your regularly scheduled content. You could even host your very own holiday lighting ceremony for customers or guests!

New Year’s Eve in the City: As we close out the year and welcome a new one, all of our local communities showcase an impressive display of colorful fireworks at midnight. How can your business ring in the new year?

Engage your clients with crowdsourced social media. Ask your customers to submit their photos and New Year’s Resolutions with a custom hashtag and then display the content in-store. They will be thrilled to see their posts on your screen as they countdown to midnight! It’s a cheap and fun method to build customer engagement.

White House Easter Egg Roll: Since the 1800s, local children and their families have been invited to the White House Lawn for the Easter Egg Roll. Decorate your templates like you would do with an Easter egg, or hide rabbits and eggs in your designs for kids to discover. Additionally, you could run kid-friendly events for your business that the whole family can enjoy.

Cherry Blossom Festival: When winter begins to thaw, the cherry blossom trees quickly steal the spotlight in D.C. Rows of beautiful pink blooms give way to some brilliant marketing ideas. Decorate your display templates with cherry blossom frames and springtime coloring.

Fourth of July: There’s something special about celebrating Independence Day on the lawn of the National Mall. Make a bang with your red, white and blue themed designs and include motion graphic fireworks to woo customers.

Local businesses that can creatively adjust their marketing strategies during the holiday season will drive sales and maintain high levels of customer engagement. A digital signage strategy that takes advantage of theses occasions is sure to bring attention to any store or business.

Jacqueline Hoffmann is a Solutions Consultant at Mvix, a leading provider of content-rich digital signage solutions. She leads the Washington, D.C. team, working with designers and engineers to build digital signage networks that connect brands with people. To learn more about Mvix, please visit www.mvixdigitalsignage.com or call 703.584.4304.

by ARLnow.com July 12, 2017 at 9:20 am 0

‘Meeting Bowls’ Coming to Courthouse — A new, temporary public art installation is coming to Courthouse. Workers will be building 5-foot high “meeting bowls,” designed by the Spanish art collective “mmmm….,” and featuring an 8-foot long circular bench inside. The bowls, which are meant to be used by passersby, are expected to be completed by Monday, July 17 and will remain in place until November. [Washingtonian]

Roosevelt Island Back Open — Roosevelt Island is open again after being temporarily closed by the National Park Service for the removal of diseased trees. [DCist]

Pentagon City Residents Peeved by Shopping Carts — Legions of stray shopping carts are getting on the nerves of Pentagon City residents, NBC 4’s Julie Carey reported during a news broadcast last night. [NBC Washington, Twitter]

Scholarships Awarded to Wakefield Students — “The Wakefield High School Education Foundation recently awarded 27 scholarships totaling $201,000, bringing the total number of scholarships presented over the history of the foundation to 400 and the total dollar amount of scholarships and teacher grants to more than $2.25 million.” [InsideNova]

Local Author Pens New Thriller — Arlington resident Bill Schweigart, author of the Beast of Barcroft, a supernatural thriller set in Arlington, has penned another book of local interest: The Devil’s Colony, which features a fictional Arlington resident as its main character. [Penguin Random House]

Nearby: Montgomery Co. Consider Plane Noise Suit — Montgomery County, Maryland has hired a law firm to explore legal action against the Federal Aviation Administration in response to new flight paths that have produced a dramatic increase in aircraft noise complaints. The flight paths were implemented in 2015 as part of the FAA’s NextGen system and have prompted some complaints in Arlington and D.C. as well. [Bethesda Beat]

Flickr pool photo by Erinn Shirley

by Adrian Cruz August 5, 2016 at 9:00 am 0

School suppliesThis weekend, Virginia will hold its annual sales tax holiday for shoppers purchasing qualifying school supplies, clothing, footwear, emergency preparedness items and certain energy-efficient items.

The tax holiday — which runs from early Friday morning to 11:59 p.m. Sunday — is aimed at helping families doing back to school shopping along with encouraging Virginians to prepare for the hurricane season.

Online purchases of qualifying items are also tax-exempt as long as orders are placed and paid for during the tax holiday and the items are available for immediate shipment.

“This sales tax holiday will make items that help families prepare for the school year or for a potential emergency more affordable,” said Virginia Governor Terry McAuliffe, in a statement. “It is my hope that shoppers will use this time to get their children the items they need to succeed in school, as well as stock up on the essentials that may come in handy during a hurricane or other emergency where electricity or clean water may be unavailable for an extended period of time.”

Tax exempt items include:

  • Most school and office supplies, such as pens, loose-leaf paper, scissors, binders, backpacks, and construction paper, priced at $20 or less.
  • Clothing and footwear, priced at $100 or less per item or pair.
  • Batteries, flashlights, bottled water, tarps, duct tape, fire extinguishers, cell-phone chargers, smoke detectors, buckets, rope, and first aid kits, priced at $60 or less.
  • Gas-powered chainsaws, priced at $350 or less, and chainsaw accessories, priced at $60 or less.
  • Portable generators, priced at $1,000 or less.
  • Energy Star-labeled dishwashers, washing machines, air conditioners, ceiling fans, light bulbs, dehumidifiers, and refrigerators, priced at $2,500 or less.
  • WaterSense-labeled sink faucets, faucet accessories, aerators, shower heads, toilets, urinals, and landscape irrigation controllers, priced at $2,500 or less.

by ARLnow.com June 27, 2016 at 8:30 am 0

Daily food specials at Mister Day's in Clarendon

Power Restored at Market Common — Power is back on at the Market Common Clarendon shopping center, following last Tuesday’s transformer explosion and fire. The electricity is being supplied by mobile generators over the next two weeks, before the shopping center can be reconnected to Dominion’s power grid. [Facebook]

Fire at River Place — A fire broke out in the kitchen of one of the units at the River Place residential complex in Rosslyn Saturday afternoon. The fire charred the walls of the kitchen. Smoke spread to several floors of the building. [Twitter]

Some Inconvenienced By Latest Metro Surge — The second phase of Metro’s maintenance surge is entering its second full week and riders have mostly adjusted to the latest round of station closures and service changes — but some are feeling the effects more than others. The current phase of “SafeTrack” work will run through July 3. [WJLA]

AFAC Seeks Fresh Food Donations — The Arlington Food Assistance Center is asking gardeners to donate fresh produce to help feed families in need in Arlington County. [InsideNova]

by ARLnow.com June 22, 2016 at 5:25 pm 0

(Updated at 6:20 p.m.) The effects of Tuesday’s major electrical fire at Market Common Clarendon (2800 Clarendon Blvd) are still being felt.

Large, noisy mobile generators are now providing power to the shopping center and its attached apartment complex, Avalon Clarendon. Nonetheless, some stores remain closed and the apartment building was still without air conditioning, hot water and elevator service.

Building management sent the following email to residents Wednesday evening.

Dear Residents,

We would like to provide the latest update on the power situation. We regret to inform that A/C, hot water and elevator service will not be restored today. Our team is making every effort for these services to be available tomorrow.

Comcast has notified us that phone, cable and internet has been restored in all three buildings. Verizon has yet to confirm a timeframe for their services.

The Whole Foods Market across the street also lost power after the transformer explosion and fire. Although the store reportedly brought in a freezer truck Wednesday, large quantities of meat, milk, cheese, juice and other perishables had to be thrown away.

Store employees were busy restocking throughout the day on Thursday.

by ARLnow.com June 21, 2016 at 8:55 am 0

Update at 5:15 p.m. — Residents of the Avalon Clarendon apartments at Market Common Clarendon are being told they should consider booking a hotel room, as power for two of the three buildings is not expected to be restored until Wednesday. Management sent the following email to residents Tuesday evening.

Dear Residents,

While we are still awaiting additional details from Dominion Virginia Power on the full repairs, please know that we are actively working on a temporary solution. Our third party contractor is currently making every effort to get temporary power to the East and West buildings. They are working to get generators here tonight; however the connection process will take into tomorrow to complete.  Please note that temporary power does not include elevators, hot water or A/C.

We recommend each resident to make the best decision for their own comfortability as far as staying in your home or searching for a hotel. While many hotels are booked, we have found 3 that may still have availability.
Hilton Arlington 703-538-6000
Hilton Garden Inn DC 202-783-7800
Hilton Garden Inn Shirlington 703-820-0440

We will have associates monitoring the stairwells and doors throughout the evening, available to escort residents up the stairs to their apartments, as well as our Concierge on duty at the Front Desk.

We will send additional updates as we receive them. Thank you for your patience and understanding while we work through this.

Thank you,

Avalon Clarendon Team

Avalon Clarendon
2800 ClarendonBlvd.  | Arlington, VA 22201

Update at 10:50 a.m. — The fire is contained, ACFD says. A number of road closures remain in the Clarendon area due to the emergency response and power outage.

Update at 10:20 a.m. — The fire is out and was contained to an electrical vault, according to Arlington County Fire Dept. spokesman Capt. Gregg Karl. No injuries have been reported. Power is being restored to parts of Clarendon (it was just restored to Le Pain Quotidien, pictured above, two blocks away) but the shopping center is expected to remain without power for an extended period of time.

Update at 10 a.m. — The smoke has largely dissipated as foam continues to be used to extinguish the flames. Another tanker unit is en route from Dulles International Airport, according to scanner traffic. According to Dominion, 933 customers in the area are currently without power.

Update at 9:40 a.m. — A foam tanker truck from the Metropolitan Washington Airports Authority fire department is attempting to extinguish the flames. Power is out to much of the Clarendon area.

Firefighters are battling a large fire at the Market Common Clarendon shopping center at 2800 Clarendon Blvd.

A “large electrical transformer has exploded and is on fire in the basement,” according to the Arlington firefighters union Twitter account. A second alarm has been sounded as the fire has grown.

A large, multi-jurisdiction fire response is on scene. Thick black smoke can be seen rising from the shopping center from miles around.

Stores at the shopping center include Crate and Barrel, Barnes and Noble and an Apple Store that’s currently closed for renovations.

(more…)

by ARLnow.com June 14, 2016 at 9:00 am 0

American flag on the Fairlington bridge over I-395

County Board Primary Voting Today — Arlington residents are heading to the polls today to vote in the Democratic County Board primary, choosing between incumbent Libby Garvey and challenger Erik Gutshall. Polls close at 7 p.m. [Arlington County]

Shelves Stocked at New Whole Foods — Some shelves are already stocked at the new Pentagon City Whole Foods. The store is set to open on Wednesday, June 29. [Twitter]

More Security at Local Gay Bar — Freddie’s Beach Bar in Crystal City has tightened its security, banned backpacks and is now searching purses in the wake of the mass shooting at a gay club in Orlando. [NBC Washington]

Art Therapy Group Shutting Down — The 296 Project, which provided art therapy for veterans with PTSD, is closing down. On June 25, the group will be hosting a big art supply giveaway at its Crystal City studio. [Facebook]

Local Jewelry and Fashion List — Washingtonian Magazine has released a list of what it says are “the best places to shop in Arlington for local art, custom jewelry, and discounted designer fashion.” [Washingtonian]

by Adrian Cruz June 1, 2016 at 6:00 pm 0

Expansion of the Pentagon City mall

Starting Friday, visitors to the Fashion Centre at Pentagon City will be able to use the mall’s new valet parking service.

“A valet service has been something we’ve wanted to implement for many years now,” said Todd Jerscheid, the mall’a director of marketing and business development. “As we prepare for the renovation completion later this summer, we couldn’t think of a better time to launch the program. We know this will be a huge hit for our shoppers, especially around the busy holiday season and as they begin to really experience all of our new features and services!”

The service will cost five dollars on top of the garage’s usual parking rate and it will be available from 10 a.m.-midnight from Friday to Saturday and from 11 a.m.-9 p.m on Sunday.

The Fashion Centre, which is starting to wrap up an expansion project, will hold a launch event on Friday. The first 50 customers to use the service will receive complimentary “swag bags” and two randomly selected shoppers will also win a $150 Simon gift card. Valet shoppers will also receive special promotions throughout the month of June.

by Jennifer Currier December 1, 2015 at 11:30 am 0

A long-vacant Cherrydale strip mall storefront, once slated to become a gun store, has been brought to life as a pop-up vintage gift shop.

NOVA Firearms cancelled its lease and its plans to add a location at 2105 N. Pollard Street this summer, following an uproar that pitted concerned residents against both local and national gun enthusiasts.

This holiday season, however, what was once an ideological battleground is now a temporary shop.

POP Vintage opened this past Friday as a vintage shop, featuring collected, donated, estate sale and consigned items, ranging in price from $2 to $20,000. It will be open every day from 11 a.m. to 7 p.m. now until Christmas Eve.

“This is a place where people can sell, barter and trade their items openly and safely, they just have to do it by Christmas,” owner Olympia Hantzopoulos said.

The store is the Rosslyn resident’s first time operating a pop-up. It’s also her first time dealing with a space with such a heated history.

Hantzopoulos said she doesn’t go a day without hearing about what the store could’ve been.

“It was such a difficult issue for both sides,” she said. “Just this Saturday two women got in an argument in the store, which was full of customers, disagreeing over whether this space should be a gun store or not.”

Despite some leftover bitterness from the gun store debate, it hasn’t stopped customers from shopping. Hantzopoulos said her first weekend open was quite busy and the experience has been a positive one so far.

“I’m overwhelmed by the community support,” she said. “I think being here and having something here is doing a lot of good for the neighborhood.”

This also isn’t Hantzopoulos’ first time working with vintage and collectible items. She also owns Miracles in the City, a hair salon in Rosslyn that’s been open for nearly 20 years. The salon also has a small boutique where Hantzopoulos sells vintage jewelry, and all profits from jewelry sales are donated to charity.

She’s adopted the same charitable model for POP Vintage — any proceeds taken in beyond what’s needed to pay the lease will be donated to charities that support women and children in the United States and around the world.

One organization Hantzopoulos plans to support sends donations to an orphanage in Afghanistan, and another provides school supplies for local students. Hantzopoulos said helping in any way she can has always been a priority.

“Thinking about the reality of how little some people have just makes me miserable,” she said. “But you can’t dwell on that, you have to just do what you can do and trust it’s helping.”

From jewelry, to paintings by D.C. artists, to chandeliers, to one-of-a-kind rugs handmade in the Middle East, to tea sets and much more, Hantzopoulos has collected enough items to offer a little bit of everything for holiday shoppers. She knows where they came from, who they belonged to and why, in her opinion, they’re valuable.

“That’s the thing about vintage,” she said. “Everything has a story. It just so happens this space does, too.”

by ARLnow.com November 27, 2015 at 10:30 am 0

Crowds of shoppers at Pentagon City mall (file photo)In popular imagination, Black Friday is the biggest shopping day of the year.

In actuality, the Saturday before Christmas is usually the biggest shopping day of the year. And with Cyber Monday and e-commerce encouraging online shopping, and Small Business Saturday encouraging shoppers to support local businesses, Black Friday may be losing its luster.

We wanted to check with those who are actually heading out to the malls and shopping centers today: how big are the crowds?

Alternatively, if you had to head into work today instead of shopping — like us — there’s an option for you.

by Jennifer Currier November 25, 2015 at 3:30 pm 0

Christmas decorations outside of Nordstrom at Pentagon City mall

There are only a couple of days left to finalize Black Friday shopping plans, so it’s time to take stock of what’s open and when.

The biggest mall in Arlington, the Fashion Centre at Pentagon City, has announced its holiday hours and specials for holiday shoppers. The mall’s hours for this weekend are:

  • Thanksgiving Day, Nov. 26 — 6 p.m. – Midnight
  • Black Friday, Nov. 27 — 6 a.m. – 9:30 p.m.
  • Saturday, Nov. 28 — 9 a.m. – 9:30 p.m.
  • Sunday, Nov. 29 — 10 a.m. – 6 p.m.

On Friday, the first 100 shoppers who check in at Guest Services at the mall will receive a “Holiday Shopping Survival Kit.” The kit will include water, mints, snacks and store promotions.

Additional sales, deals and promotions will continue to be posted on the mall’s Facebook page.

by Heather Mongilio August 19, 2015 at 1:30 pm 1,276 0

Wags and Whiskers 2011 (courtesy photo)The Village at Shirlington’s annual pet expo will return this Saturday.

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 event will also have live music from Dan Haas, from 10 a.m. to 12:45 p.m., and Taylor Carson, from 1:15-4 p.m.

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.

by Mariah Joyce August 7, 2015 at 1:45 pm 1,079 0

School supplies (photo via pixabay.com)From today through this Sunday (Aug. 9), Virginia residents will be able to make some purchases tax-free.

Virginians are getting a break from the sales tax this weekend courtesy of Virginia’s General Assembly, which combined three existing sales tax holidays into one longer Tax-Free Weekend this year, according to the Virginia Department of Taxation.

According to the department, items exempt from the sales tax this weekend include school supplies, clothing and footwear, emergency preparedness items and some energy-efficient home appliances with either the Energy Star or WaterSense label.

Included in the list of exemptions are back-to-school staples like backpacks, calculators, flash drives and composition notebooks, as well as a variety of sports and recreational equipment.

For items that do not qualify for the sales tax exemption, store owners may still offer them as tax-free by choosing to have the store absorb the cost of the sales tax on behalf of the consumer.

More information about the sales tax holiday for both consumers and retailers can be found at the Department of Taxation’s website.

Photo via pixabay.com

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