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The former Whitlow’s space will apparently three separate identities when it reopens under new ownership.

In December we reported that Michael Bramson, who’s behind The Lot beer garden and the Clarendon Pop-Up Bar, was opening something new called B Live in the long-time local watering hole’s former Clarendon home. Before that, we also reported that locally-founded burger chain Five Guys was planning to take part of the space, perhaps as soon as this summer.

Whitlow’s closed in June after more than 25 years at 2854 Wilson Blvd.

But B Live and Five Guys aren’t the only things planning to open there. A new permit application has been filed for “Coco B’s,” another forthcoming Bramson concept.

While B Live will occupy the first floor and possibly the basement of the space, according to building permit applications, it appears that Coco B’s will be the name of what used to be Whitlow’s rooftop tiki bar.

A stop by the space today revealed the Coco B’s application posted on the street-level entrance to the stairs that lead to the tiki bar, while B Live permits were near the main entrance to the indoor space. Most of the windows were papered over, but a gap in the covering revealed an interior that had mostly been cleared of its former accoutrements — as well as two people working inside.

Bramson and his PR rep both declined to reveal any information about the new concepts last week.

“At the moment there actually isn’t anything to share about B Live or Coco B’s,” wrote Vicki Holcomb, the PR rep.

“I don’t have any info to share at the moment,” Bramson himself told ARLnow.

The name Coco B’s seems to have been chosen because Bramson is retaining the tiki bar theme. It’s sure to raise some eyebrows, however, given its similarity to the name of a noted local TikTok personality whose arrest and subsequent exoneration — amid allegations against two Arlington bars — attracted considerable attention last summer.

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The past several months haven’t exactly gone as expected, but Maison Cheryl in Clarendon is very much looking forward to the future, chef and co-owner Robert Maher tells ARLnow.

The bistro officially opened in early September in the former Heritage Brewing space at 2900 Wilson Blvd, looking to appeal to “older millennials.”

The business has been growing and already has a number of regulars, Maher says, but a combination of continued COVID-19 concerns and not securing an outdoor seating permit has dampened expectations a bit.

“We’re still trying to get our outdoor seating, which is amazing how it’s been like five months and we still don’t have it,” he says. “But we should be getting that next week.”

Though, mid-January isn’t exactly the ideal time to eat outside.

Nonetheless, Maher is encouraged by the experiences he’s had so far in Arlington. He and his wife moved from New York City to Bethesda during the pandemic to be closer to family. He initially looked at opening a restaurant there and in D.C., but was attracted to Clarendon’s growing population.

“It looked like such a growing area. Not only with people that have been here for decades and live in the houses, but younger [people] who are working in D.C.,” he says. “I think it’s one of the best places to open a restaurant.”

Another thing that Maher is learning is the amount of work it takes to be both the head chef and co-owner of a restaurant.

“There’s a lot on the plate,” he says. “There’s so much that has to be done besides cooking, food ordering, costs…that’s been the most eye-opening experience. I take a lot of work home with me.”

Maher is a trained French cook and the menu is inspired by “French-New American” cuisine. Best sellers are the Maison Wagyu burger and seared duck breast, but his personal favorite is the bucatini and fried burrata in a zucchini sauce.

Maison Cheryl changes the menu seasonally and next week it will shift to winter. Most of the favorites will still be on it, but Maher is adding several new dishes including mussels mariniere, a honey lavender duck breast, and bouillabaisse with muscles, clams, shrimp and Chilean sea bass.

“Bouillabaisse is one of the first dishes I perfected so I love coming back to it especially during the cold winter months,” he says.

He’s enjoying his time growing Maison Cheryl and becoming part of the Clarendon community.

“I’m hoping to see the same faces over and over again,” Maher says. “One day, I might think of [opening] another one, but right now just trying to become a staple in the community. I’m having the time of my life doing that.”

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3839 Military Road (via Google Maps)

Welcome to 2022! A new year is here and January kicked off with a cold and snowy start.

Taking a look back, 114 new listings hit the market in the past four weeks and 263 were recently sold, according to Homesnap.

Additionally, there was a median sales price of $695,000 and a median list price of $579,999. There were a total of 414 homes for sale, with 276 condos, 111 detached homes and 27 townhomes.

Let’s take a look at a few of the most expensive homes sold in December:

In the market? See properties that have been Just Listed and Just Reduced.

Image via Google Maps

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It appears that the Italian market in Pentagon City has closed.

Napoli Salumeria on S. Joyce Street at Westport (formerly Pentagon Row) opened just over a year ago, but now it has seemingly served its last focaccia.

The windows are covered with brown paper, most signage is gone, and the storefront has seemingly been cleared out.

ARLnow has reached out to ownership for confirmation and to get a reason for the apparent quick departure, but has yet to hear back as of publication.

A spokesperson for Federal Realty Investment Trust, which owns Westpost, noted the market was always intended to be a pop-up and not permanent. It’s not known yet what might replace it.

Napoli Salumeria was owned by Antonio Ferraro and served Neapolitan street food — like focaccia and fried mozzarella — as well as sandwiches, homemade sauces, pasta, Italian meats, and cheese.

Ferraro also owned Napoli Pasta Bar in D.C., which was named a Michelin Bib Gourmand restaurant in 2018. That eatery closed its doors in early 2021.

While a number of businesses in Westpost have closed in recent months, including Thaiphoon, the development is preparing for a big year of openings, including Nighthawk Pizza, Banditos Bar & Kitchen, and Target.

Hat tip to CartChaos22202

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For the first time in nearly three years, Arlington experienced a significant snowfall.

Starting very early yesterday morning and finally tapering off in afternoon, preliminary estimates suggest that the county got close to seven inches of snow.

The storm brought power outages, closures, the suspension of bus service, cancellation of trash pick-up, and numerous skidding cars.

It was a very bad day to be on the roads, with the Arlington and VDOT crews unable to pre-treat the streets because the storm started off as rain.

As of Tuesday morning, Arlington County snow crews — their ranks thinned by Covid absences — were tackling neighborhood streets after spending most of Monday treating and clearing main roads.

Despite the challenges, with everything that the region has been dealing with lately, the snow also brought a considerable amount of joy to some.

“I love it,” Javed Malik told ARLnow, peering up at the falling flakes at Penrose Square. “It’s a beautiful, gorgeous day.”

In Ballston, kids and adults alike were spotted pulling sleds to the nearest hill. Pedestrians were reclaiming the covered streets as their own, snapping selfies and looking up at the snowy sky.

Persi George, from California, had never seen anything like it in person before.

“I’ve seen it before in the movies,” she said with a laugh standing in front of her apartment building along Columbia Pike. It’s a little softer than she expected, but that doesn’t dampen her enthusiasm as she prepares to make her first snow angel. “I’m in love with it.”

Yesterday was also set to be the first day back to school after the long holiday break with Arlington Public Schools continuing to commit to in-person instruction. That didn’t happen because the storm cancelled classes across Arlington and the region. School is cancelled today, too, with an expected refreezing overnight.

At least one teacher is breathing a sigh of relief. With Covid cases on the rise, likely due to holiday gatherings, the two extra days off provides more time for students to get tested.

“This couldn’t have been more well-timed. Coming back from the break, we are all worried about the rising case numbers,” Arlington high school teacher Josh Folb told ARLnow. “Hopefully, this gives people more time to get tested and… isolate, if needed. I haven’t talked to a teacher yet, and I’ve talked to a lot today, that isn’t grateful [about the snow days].”

There remains a chance it will snow again this week, Thursday night to Friday morning, though it’s not expected to dump as much snow as Monday’s storm.

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Snow on trash and recycling cans in North Arlington (staff photo)

If you live in a home that gets Arlington County’s trash collection service, with a Monday or Tuesday collection day, prepare to hang on to your refuse for another week.

Arlington’s Dept. of Environmental Service said in an email this afternoon that Monday and Tuesday trash, recycling and organics collection has been cancelled due to “safety issues related to today’s storm.” Christmas tree collection has also been cancelled for those two days.

For those who now have to hold on to their trash for an extra week, “excess trash can be stored and placed curbside in plastic bags and personal containers with lids,” DES advised.

Collection service is expected to resume Wednesday on a normal schedule.

More from DES:

Greetings:

Because of safety issues related to today’s storm, Monday and Tuesday curbside recycling/trash/organics collection will not take place for those routes this week.

Weather-permitting, curbside service will resume Jan. 5 with regular Wednesday morning routes, continue on Jan. 6 with regular Thursday routes and conclude for the week on Jan. 7 with regular Friday routes. There will be no shifting of routes and days as previously publicized.

Excess trash can be stored and placed curbside in plastic bags and personal containers with lids.

The County offers two major recycling drop-off locations.

Special Christmas tree collection will resume Wednesday, weather-permitting, and continue through next week.

On behalf of the County’s contractor and its crews, thank you for your patience and understanding.

For the latest County office delays/cancellations, please visit [this page].

Sincerely,

Arlington County Department of Environmental Services

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ARLnow is ringing in the New Year with a look back at 2021 through our photo archives.

We compiled a slideshow to encapsulate this year and recall some of the stories and moments that made 2021 memorable.

This year, Arlingtonians celebrated local heroes, pushed for and saw cultural changes and said goodbye to venerable institutions — all against the backdrop of the ongoing pandemic.

Olympic swimmer Torri Huske received a hero’s welcome home from Japan, while “superwoman” Mariflor Ventura received accolades for her local mutual aid efforts.

Arlington removed vestiges of Robert E. Lee’s legacy, renaming Route 29 Langston Blvd and replacing the county logo depicting his house with one that ARLnow readers helped bring about. Teens protested how public school administrators handle complaints of sexual assault while bus drivers demonstrated for better pay and treatment. Locals picked up free cannabis seeds after private use was legalized.

But 2021 was the end of an era for some beloved Arlington institutions: Inner Ear Studios, the recording studio for Minor Threat and Fugazi; Clarendon watering hole Whitlow’s on Wilson; the Highlander Motel; and a few (arguably) historic estates.

Amid all that, the pandemic continued to run its course. After a chaotic start, the county helped to administer the vaccine to tens of thousands of residents. Locals started eating out again, kids returned for in-person school, and there was optimism about a return to normalcy over the summer — until that faded with the Delta variant and, now, Omicron.

And we almost got a gondola — or, at least, that’s what some want to believe.

With that we’ll step aside for the long weekend and see you back here on Monday, in 2022. Happy New Year, Arlington!

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On the eve of New Year’s Eve, we’re finishing up our countdown to 2022 with this year’s five most-read stories.

It was a close call for ARLnow’s first and second place stories, which each exceeded 100,000 views and were within 1,000 views of each other. And for the first (and last?) time in ARLnow’s history, an opinion column rocketed into the top 5.

The countdown finishes up as follows.

5. While the Capitol was stormed, a group of men gathered near the Marine Corps War Memorial (March 1 | 56,882 views)

A group of 10 or so men loitered near the Marine Corps War Memorial on Jan. 6, the day of supporters of former President Donald Trump stormed the U.S. Capitol. What they were doing there remains unclear, though ARLnow hears that another news organization is working on a story about the gathering.

4. Police officer killed in attack outside Pentagon (Aug. 3 | 65,263 views)

A massive emergency response surrounded the Pentagon this summer after a police officer was attacked and killed at the Pentagon bus platform, outside the Metro station. The assailant, who died on the scene after shooting himself, was identified as a Georgia man who unsuccessfully tried to join the Marine Corps in 2012. That man’s brother is now charged in a double homicide in the Atlanta area.

3.Local couple killed in California plane crash (July 19 | 66,073 views) 

An Arlington couple, Shauna and James Waite, along with Shauna’s father, died in the crash of a small plane in Napa County, California this summer. They are survived by her mother and Shauna and James’ young son. James worked for a California financial technology company and Shauna was a veterinarian. The two were avid runners who rescued a menagerie of animals.

2. Making Room: Stop using leaf blowers (Nov. 22 | 100,472 views)

As the era of columns on ARLnow neared its end, Jane Green published an opinion piece decrying gas-powered leaf blowers for being noisy and emitting copious carbon emissions. More than 425 comments later, it’s our second-most read story of all time.

1. Residents abuzz over mysterious bug bites possibly tied to cicadas (July 28 | 101,215 views)

Residents afflicted with strange, extremely itchy bites began suspecting oak itch mites, a microscopic organism that normally feeds on the eggs and larvae of the oak leaf gall midge — and also, it’s believed, cicada nymphs — but began biting humans. Our top story — later covered by TV stationsthe Washington Post and other national and international outlets — came to us via anonymous tips and a Facebook group discussion. Mercifully, the long-lasting and absurdly itchy bites eventually faded away later in the summer.

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We’re continuing our countdown to 2022 with our most-read stories of 2021.

Up next, in the top 10, we have more coverage from the summer tornado and the storming of the U.S. Capitol, as well as an update on a now two-year-old murder in Ballston.

The penultimate list of stories in our countdown is below.

10. NEW: Baltimore Ravens player arrested in Arlington (March 17 | 34,771 views)

Defensive lineman Broderick Washington, a second-year player on the Baltimore Ravens, allegedly damaged five vehicles with a metal object, plus damaged an apartment door and window, at the Dolley Madison Towers apartment complex. In June, he pleaded no contest to one count of misdemeanor property destruction and the other six charges were dropped, the Baltimore Sun reported. The judge barred him from contacting the victims and visiting the apartment complex.

9. BREAKING: Convoy of emergency vehicles seen heading towards D.C., Va. National Guard to deploy (Jan. 6 | 35,048 views) 

This story contained several updates as we received them on Jan. 6, the day supporters of former President Donald Trump stormed the U.S. Capitol. Arlington ambulances were told to avoid transporting patients to hospitals in the District while Arlington police officers, the Virginia National Guard and state troopers were dispatched to help D.C. and Capitol police.

8. BREAKING: Widespread damage after tornado warning issued for Arlington (July 1 | 41,872 views)

The fire department was swamped with service calls after a (relatively) small tornado tore through parts of the county. The calls included one for a man who was trapped after a tree fell on his house. The National Weather Service later confirmed it was a category EF1 tornado, the second-weakest on the Enhanced Fujita Scale scale.

7. BREAKING: Police release surveillance video of ‘person of interest’ in Ballston murder (Jan. 15 | 48,309 views)

Arlington police released video footage of a “person of interest” in the January 2020 murder of 24-year-old Scott Ratigan. ACPD described this person as a White male between 5’6″ and 5’8″ tall with a pigeon-toed gait. In October, the Ratigans increased their reward for information leading to an arrest and conviction in their son’s murder to $50,000. The case remains unsolved.

6. Healthy Paws: Boy dog bumps — the mysterious bulbus glandis (March 8, 2018 | 52,566 views)

For reasons only known to the gods of Google, a 2018 sponsored article explaining the function of a little-known part of male dog anatomy that can cause pup parents alarm continues to grace our top stories for another year.

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The countdown to 2022 with this year’s most-read ARLnow stories continues today.

Falling just outside of the top 10 were the freak tornado that tore through Arlington and a story that stirred up patriotic feelings in ARLnow’s commentariat and which received national attention: Marines rescuing a stranded car during torrential downpour.

15. BREAKING: NWS confirms tornado ripped through North Arlington neighborhoods (July 2 | 22,382 views) 

An EF1 tornado, an exceedingly rare weather event for Arlington, uprooted trees and trampolines and tore siding and shingles off houses as it moved from the City of Falls Church through Waverly Hills and Lyon Village before crossing into D.C. The twister had maximum winds of 90 mph.

14. DEVELOPING: Arlington police aware of ‘non-specific, unconfirmed threat’ this weekend (Oct. 29 | 23,236 views)

Police departments increased police presence throughout Northern Virginia after hearing of an unspecific, unconfirmed threat to shopping centers. Some outlets reported the threat was tied to the terror group ISIS and Arlington police investigated a suspicious vehicle outside Fashion Centre at Pentagon City but found no threat.

13. Four bridges connecting Va. to D.C. will be closed starting Tuesday (Jan. 15 | 26,235 views) 

Ahead of the inauguration of President Joe Biden, a number of bridges connecting Arlington to D.C. were closed for additional security. Biden’s ceremony, days after the storming of the U.S. Capitol, featured historic levels of security.

12. Local TikTok star arrested amid spat with restaurants (Aug. 10 | 30,656 views) 

Here we first encountered Arlington resident Crystal Briscoe, known on TikTok as Coco, who was arrested for ignoring a court order not to talk about a local restaurant employee on social media. A judge later found fault with the order and charges against her were dropped. In the videos leading to her arrest, Briscoe described alleged harassment by employees of two Columbia Pike bars: Rebellion on the Pike and The Celtic House Irish Pub & Restaurant.

11. NEW: Viral video shows Marines helping stranded driver during Thursday’s flooding (Sept. 17 | 34,101 views)

A group of Marines in their dress blue uniforms trudged through floodwaters to help a stranded motorist along Columbia Pike, near the Pentagon, after a storm. During the rescue, documented in a viral TikTok video with nearly one million views as of today, the driver called it “the most American thing ever.”

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Christmas tree set for curbside collection (via Arlington County)

Those who decorated for Christmas with real trees this year can have their festive fire hazards collected by the county starting next week.

From Monday, Jan. 3 through Friday, Jan. 14, residents can place trees at their curb for pickup. The trees should be curbside “no later than 6 a.m. on your regular trash collection day after removing ALL decorations, nails, stands. Do not place trees in plastic bags,” according to the county.

Trees collected these two weeks will be turned into free mulch that locals can pick up from the Solid Waste Bureau’s Earth Products Yard in Shirlington (4300 29th Street S.) or at the corner of 26th Street N. and Yorktown Blvd.

“Make sure the tree is bare and ready for composting,” the county says. “Trees over 8 feet long will need to be dismantled.”

After Friday, Jan. 14, Christmas trees can be put on the curb as part of the county’s year-round yard waste collection.

Arlington residents who don’t have regular curbside pickup —  including folks who live in townhomes, apartments and condominiums — can bring their live Christmas trees to the Earth Products Yard in Shirlington.

The county asks those looking to drop off their trees to call (703) 228-5000 between 7 a.m. and 7 p.m. Monday through Friday to schedule a weekday appointment. Proof of residence in Arlington is required for drop off.

DES also has a guide for reducing holiday waste, including how to dispose of tissue paper and bows and what Christmas decor can’t go into blue bins.

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