Car on Fire Spotted Driving Down Street — Yesterday evening, an Arlington County Fire Department unit radioed dispatch to report that they had just seen a car with flames visible from the engine compartment drive past them on Carlin Springs Road, its driver oblivious to the fire. The fire engine was able to turn around, catch up with the driver near the intersection of Wilson and Glebe, pull the car over and extinguish the flames. [Twitter, Twitter]
Wrong Man on Iwo Jima Memorial? — The Marine Corps is investigating claims that a Navy corpsman identified as one of the men who raised the flag in a moment depicted by Arlington’s Iwo Jima Memorial was not, in fact, in the original photo. [USA Today, Associated Press, New York Times]
USS Arlington Returns Home — The sailors and Marines aboard the USS Arlington have returned to Norfolk after a seven-month overseas deployment assisting in the fight against ISIS. [Marine Corps Times, WAVY]
Former Top Federal IT Official Dies — Greg Ambrose, who had served in senior information technology posts at the departments of Defense, Homeland Security, State and Veterans Affairs, died early Tuesday morning. Ambrose took his own life at a Rosslyn condominium after posting on Facebook about a woman who had left him for another man. [FCW, Twitter]
Arlington, Virginia Tech Join ‘Smart City’ Network — “Virginia Tech and Arlington County have been accepted into the MetroLab Network of 35 city/county-university partnerships that works to bring data, analytics and innovation to local government.” [Arlington County]
Flickr pool photo by Joseph Gruber
Brendan Hurley currently lives in Ashton Heights and got engaged back in January.
However, not long before he proposed, the 29-year-old bet a friend $20 he could get John Stamos to be a groomsman in his wedding. The friend accepted the bet, and Hurley has made it his mission to win.
“I got engaged after I made the bet, and my fiancé told me she had picked six bridesmaids,” Hurley recalled. “I remembered Stamos, so I got six of my friends to sign up and told one specifically that if Stamos shows up, he’s out.”
Hurley added that sixth friend isn’t particularly happy with him, and his bride-to-be isn’t thrilled either.
“She jokingly says she doesn’t want him to come because she doesn’t want him to take all the attention,” he said, laughing. “I know she’ll be absolutely gorgeous that day, so I told her not to worry about it.”
Hurley’s making several efforts to bring Stamos to Virginia for the big day in May 2016.
The first step was getting active on Twitter — something Hurley said he would never do — by directly tweeting at the Full House celebrity. He’s used the social media platform to recruit the support of some friends and a John Stamos fan page.
He also started a blog that he updates periodically. Some of the posts mention reaching out to bigger media outlets like BuzzFeed and The Ellen DeGeneres Show.
The most recent entry was about Hurley completing this year’s Marine Corps Marathon while wearing a custom shirt that he designed and La Tee-Shirt on Lee Highway printed.
It read, “I run for Stamos.”
“That shirt got a lot of hooting and hollering,” Hurley said. “I think that’s going to be my racing shirt from now on.”
Hurley even offered to buy his plane ticket and give him the $20 for winning the bet if he shows up.
Despite his efforts, the celebrity hasn’t responded… yet.
“I’ve got some time,” Hurley said. “I’m not giving up hope.”
Photos courtesy of Brendan Hurley
The “Cow Flop Drop” game is part of the Lyon Park neighborhood’s family-friendly, all-day Halloween festivities.
A cow named Blossom will wander around part of the park, marked off in an 8×8 grid. Residents will buy a square in the grid and hope that Blossom deposits her droppings in that square, to win cash prizes.
If Blossom’s bowels are uncharacteristically unproductive, a “brave volunteer” will “dress as a cow an lob a water balloon into the field to identify a winner.”
From the Lyon Park and Ashton Heights listservs:
This Saturday, shoehorned in between the Parade of Costumes at 10 AM and the bonfire at dark, Lyon Park will hold a Cow Flop Drop.
Yes, we have a cow. Yes, we have a plan. Yes, there will be games (with cow-themed prizes) and food.
Volunteers will create a grid on the ground with 64 square, and you’ll be able to purchase a square starting at 10:00 AM. Our cow, Blossom, will surprise and delight you as she enters the field at 10:30 AM.
From 10:30 AM until 2 PM, we’ll monitor Blossom’s “movements.” Each time she selects a square, the square’s owner will win a portion of the proceeds from that game. It’s cow chip bingo!
The earliest games will be low-stakes, and you can purchase a square for just a few dollars. Around noon, we’ll offer a high stakes game with each square costing $50. And don’t have a cow — if Blossom doesn’t deliver every 30 minutes, we have a very brave volunteer who will dress as a cow an lob a water balloon into the field to identify a winner!
If your costumed child would like to run a game and toss a balloon, we will offer a few $1 games if you can recruit enough players to cover the entire board.
The aforementioned children’s parade of costumes starts at 10 a.m. Saturday, followed by an “explore a fire truck” event starting at 11 a.m. From 7-9 p.m., the community will hold its annual Halloween bonfire in the park.
(Updated at 1:20 p.m.) Starbucks will be opening a new cafe in Rosslyn this fall, with the opening of the new TargetExpress store.
The coffee shop will be located inside the store, at 1500 Wilson Blvd, which is expected to open next month. A quick peek inside the glass doors yesterday revealed that much of the familiar Target interior is already complete, with workers continuing to work on fixtures like security cameras.
Curiously, this will be the third Starbucks location within a one block radius. Shoppers sipping their latte from the store will be able to look out the big glass windows and see two Starbucks across the street, one inside the Safeway (1501 17th Street N.) and the other freestanding (1525 Wilson Blvd).
A fourth Rosslyn Starbucks is down the hill on N. Lynn Street, about a quarter mile away.
Such dense placement of Starbucks stores is not unprecedented, and Arlington is noted for its love of Starbucks, but it does seem a bit excessive even for Manhattan on the Potomac. The Columbia Pike corridor, for instance, only just got its first Starbucks.
“As a standard course of business, Starbucks continually evaluates our store portfolio, using various criteria to ensure we are meeting the needs of our customers,” a Starbucks spokeswoman told ARLnow.com.
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
Woman Takes Stage to Find Bathroom — An apparently intoxicated woman climbed on stage during a recent Signature Theatre production in Shirlington, made her way backstage and asked a cast member for directions to the bathroom. [Playbill]
Spout Run Closure — The eastbound lanes of the Spout Run Parkway will be completely closed from 9:30 a.m. to 2:30 p.m. today for road paving. No detours will be in place and “alternative routes should be used,” according to the National Park Service.
Arlington Murder to Be Featured on TV Show — This coming Sunday, at 10 p.m., the show “Deadline: Crime with Tamron Hall” on Investigation Discovery will feature the 2012 homicide of Mack L. Woods Sr. in Arlington. [Patch]
Charleys Now Open in Pentagon City — A Charleys Philly Steaks restaurant is now open in the food court of the Fashion Centre at Pentagon City mall food court. “Charleys brings a unique experience to the food court with its grilled-fresh-in-front-of-you flavor,” the company said in a press release.
Food Truck Stops Taking Cash — The Lemongrass food truck, which frequents Arlington, has decided to stop accepting cash. The truck now only takes credit and debit cards. [Washington Post]
Why Arlington Went to Paper Ballots — Arlington reintroduced paper ballots this year after dumping its electronic voting machines. Why did it get rid of the more modern tech? The WINVote system was found to be grossly insecure and the touchscreen devices were dubbed the “worst voting machines” in America. [Wired]
Flickr pool photo by Erinn Shirley
A homeowner returned to his or her residence on the 2700 block of N. Beechwood Street after a few days away, only to find that something wasn’t quite right — someone had been inside the house and had helped themselves to some sweet treats.
“Between 12:00 p.m. on August 9 and 9:00 p.m. on August 12, an unknown suspect(s) entered a residence through a doggie door and ate the homeowner’s popsicles and whipped cream,” according to a crime report. “The suspect(s) proceeded to play with Pokémon cards that were found in the residence.”
“After they enjoyed some popsicles, they played a bit with some Pokemon cards and left,” ACPD spokesman Dustin Sternbeck said of the suspect or suspects, whose identity and motive remains a mystery.
A man holding a Confederate flag was spotted marching down Lee Highway near East Falls Church this morning.
The above photo was taken near N. Sycamore Street around 8:00 a.m. A reader said the man was walking very deliberately down the street, with a Confederate flag that had the Gadsden flag’s “Don’t Tread On Me” snake in the middle.
“[He was] not yelling anything but [you] could tell he was walking with pride in his step,” said the reader.
At least one concerned resident called police to report the display, which is highly unusual for Arlington, but according to scanner traffic police determined that the man was exercising his First Amendment rights and not violating the law.
Photo courtesy @WanyeVVest
A single-vehicle accident on S. Arlington Mill Drive ended with the car rolling down an embankment and ending up on its roof.
The accident happened just after 2:00 p.m. The driver of a newer-model Acura was heading down Arlington Mill Drive, near 9th Street S., when she somehow lost control of the vehicle, drove over a curb and down the steep embankment.
The car ended up on its roof, just steps from Four Mile Run and a popular pedestrian path. Amazingly, the driver was unhurt and was able to crawl out of the passenger side of the vehicle on her own power as police and a fire department rescue squad were arriving.
Police on the scene said they were unsure exactly how the accident happened. A flatbed tow truck is currently on scene, trying to figure out how to get the car up from the embankment.
No word yet on whether the driver will face any charges. The accident happened less than a block from the Arlington Mill Community Center and the site of an earlier water main break.
Police were called to the intersection of Fairfax Drive and N. Taylor Street around 9:30 p.m. for a report of a body lying in the street. Police and medics arrived on scene and and determined that the individual was bleeding from his head but was breathing.
Officers talked to a witness and learned that the man was “extremely intoxicated” and had been trying to walk backwards in the street when he lost his balance, fell, hit his head and knocked himself out, according to Arlington County Police spokesman Dustin Sternbeck.
The man, 33, was by himself at the time and it’s unknown where he was walking from. He was transported to Inova Fairfax Hospital with non-life-threatening injuries.
An accident at the intersection of N. Glebe Road and Wilson Blvd had office workers and bystanders scratching their heads this afternoon.
The accident happened at the Ballston intersection just after 3:30 p.m. Somehow, a red sedan entered the left-hand travel lane of traffic heading in the opposite direction on Glebe Road. It appears that the sedan ran head-on into a taxi stopped just before the intersection.
A photo sent by a tipster shows police on the scene and minimal damage to the two vehicles.
Photo courtesy Alex O.
Initial reports suggest the truck was heading southbound on Glebe near the intersection with S. Walter Reed Drive when a pair of its rear wheels flew off and struck a Mercedes SUV traveling northbound.
The driver of the Mercedes was taken to the hospital for evaluation of minor injuries, according to Arlington County police spokesman Dustin Sternbeck. The driver of the tractor trailer stayed on scene after the accident. The wheels ended up at the base of a clump of trees along the southbound side of Glebe.
As of 11:45 a.m., both the SUV and the tractor trailer had been towed away and an earlier northbound lane closure was lifted.
A local bike commuter decided to spice up his ride to work by bringing along his favorite plastic robot boxing game.
A YouTube video shows the anonymous cyclist riding down the Custis Trail with the Rock ’em Sock ’em Robots game placed in his bike’s cargo basket. As one point, the cyclist even starts playing the game.
Hat tip to @rcannon100
No, you weren’t imagining things on your commute that morning. Those were, in fact, two horses grazing near the off-ramp from northbound I-395 to Glebe Road.
It’s unclear why exactly the horses were there — some sort of accident or mechanical mishap involving the tow vehicle, perhaps — but those tending to the horses apparently decided that they needed to munch on some grass while waiting to continue on with their journey.
Finally, around 10:00 this morning, the horses loaded back into the trailer, following the arrival of an SUV. Minutes later, the SUV towed the trailer away and everything was back to normal.
Photo (right) courtesy Matt Coyne
Buttoned-up and professional inside, these restaurants become your chatty pal when you follow them on Twitter. Sometimes outspoken, sometimes outrageous, sometimes attention-seeking, and occasionally Tweeting about something legitimately restaurant-related, these eateries have a personality on social media that has little to do with to the experience of going there and having a meal.
We have selected L.A. Bar and Grill (2530 Columbia Pike), T.H.A.I. In Shirlington (4029 Campbell Avenue) and The Front Page (4201 Wilson Blvd) as Arlington’s Most Outspoken Restaurants on Twitter.
Whether it’s pontificating on the off-season signings of the Washington Capitals, telling someone who just went to a competing restaurant to “try us… next time” or calling Comcast a bunch of “a–holes,” these restaurants are unafraid to deviate from the normal sales pitches that one might find on the Twitter accounts of larger, corporate-owned restaurants.
“It’s just something to have fun with, not to be too serious,” said Sean Deloatche, general manager of L.A. Bar and Grill. “A lot of our regulars, to be honest, aren’t on Twitter. It’s more towards our younger crowd.”
Deloatche, who runs the restaurant’s Twitter account, says that it’s not about trying to sell more food or drink, it’s about having a conversation with customers.
“Every bar has to be more serious on Twitter, but that’s not the way we talk to our customers anyway,” he said. “We can say things that every other bar wants to say, but can’t. We are like a neighborhood dive bar, and we play to our strengths. We don’t try to be anything that we’re not.”
See examples of Sean’s nontraditional Tweeting, and the Tweets of the two other “outspoken” restaurants, after the jump.