Morning Notes

Commercial Buildings Win Awards — Projects in Fairfax County received 10 honors at the NAIOP Northern Virginia awards earlier this month. College Board in Reston received the award of excellence for tenant space of over 50,000 square feet and the expansion of Reston Town Center received the office award of excellence. [Fairfax County Economic Development Authority]

Last Weeks for Leaf Collection in Town of Herndon — The last weeks for leaf collection are closing in for the Town of Herndon. North of the bike trail, the collection ends on Dec. 3, and south of the bike trail, collection ends on Dec. 10. Leaves must be bagged and will be collected only on trash days. [Town of Herndon]

Reston Students Earn Honors — Two Reston students received honors from their colleges. [Reston Patch]

Blood Drive in Reston This Friday — INOVA Blood Donor Services is holding a blood drive on Friday at 1700 Wainwright Drive from 1-5:30 p.m.  Appointments can be made online. [INOVA]

Photo via vantaghill/Flickr

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Another pizza spot is coming to the Town of Herndon soon.

Deli Italiano, a pizza chain with several local locations, plans to open at 700 Elden Street.

Yasser Baslios says he plans to open up the Town of Herndon location in around two months. That’s around the same time he plans to open up a location at 1631 Washington Plaza in Reston.

Both timelines are dependent on permitting and construction — which have delayed the project in Reston.

The pizza spot would join Marigold International Foods, which opened in 2019, and Town Barber. The suite has been vacant since the development first opened.

Deli Italiano serves a variety of salads, sandwiches, pizzas, subs, pastas, and calzones. The menu is available online.

Image via Google Maps

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Morning Notes

A fall day at Lake Audubon (Photo by Marjorie Copson)

Confederate Names Task Force to Meet — The task force, which was established by the Fairfax County Board of Supervisors, will meet today to recommend whether or not to rename Lee and Lee-Jackson highways. [Fairfax County Government]

Reston Association’s Holiday Fest Returns — Holiday Fest will return to Walker Nature Center on Sunday. Guests can enjoy live music, hot cocoa, and a gingerbread contest. [Reston Association]

Libraries to Offer COVID-19 Test Kits — Fairfax County Public Library branches will begin distributing free COVID-19 rapid antigen at-home test kits as part of pilot program that begins Dec. 3. Quantities are limited. Tests should be taken at home, not in a library branch. [Fairfax County Government]

Photo by Marjorie Copson

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Nothing Bundt Cakes plans to bring its tiered bundt cakes, bundtlets, and other sweet options to the Town of Herndon.

Exterior signs posted in Herndon Centre indicate the business has signed a lease for 334 Elden Street. That row of businesses has one vacancy and another dessert shop called Dessert Lounge, which serves up Indian-inspired desserts.

A company representative tells Reston Now that the shop is expected to open on May 22, 2022 — barring any construction and permitting delays.

Nothing Bundt Cakes was founded by Dena Tripp and Debbie Shwetz in 1997 in an effort to fill “a gap in the world for delicious cakes,” according to its website.

The business has other locations in Alexandria, Falls Church, Dulles, Fairfax, and Vienna. New Virginia locations are planned in Suffolk and Short Pump as well, according to the company’s website.

Menu options include 8 and 10-inch bundt cakes, tiered bundt cakes, bundtlets, bundles towers and bundtinis.   Flavors range from white chocolate raspberry to marble cake.

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Morning Notes

Fairfax Schools Settle Lawsuit — Fairfax County Public Schools has reached a settlement with parents and advocacy groups over a lawsuit that alleged students with disabilities experience discrimination, trauma, and physical harm through the improper use of seclusion and physical restraint. The agreement ends a lawsuit that lasted for more than two years. [Washington Post]

Ramp Closures Along Multiple I-66 Interchanges In Effect — Overnight ramp closures are expected from today through Dec. 4 for the Transform 66 outside the Beltway project. Several ramps will be impacted as part of the project. [Virginia Department of Transportation]

A Cyber Monday Reminder from FCPD — The Fairfax County Police Department is reminding residents of its package theft prevention tips. Some suggestions include closely tracking delivery so that dates and times are known and asking a neighbor to watch for your deliveries. [FCPD]

Photo via vantagehill/Flickr

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Hunter Mill Supervisor Walter Alcorn helps a Cornerstones effort to get bags that have food and gift cards as well as other bags with toiletries to those in need. (Photo via Cornerstones/Instagram)

With giving Tuesday on the horizon, the season of charity and gift-giving has arrived.

A number of local organizations have launched year-end campaigns and donations drives. We’ve rounded up some ways to help your neighbors and local nonprofit organizations.

Santa’s Ride

Drop off new unwrapped toys, games, books, and gifts to any Fairfax County police station through Saturday, Dec. 11. The items will be donated to Fairfax Hospital, the Georgetown Lombardi Cancer Center and other children in the community. The Town of Herndon’s police department is also participating.

Toys for Tots

The county’s fire and rescue department is taking part in the annual campaign. Residents can drop off unwrapped and new toys at any Fairfax County fire station through Sunday, Dec. 12.

Knitting Communities Together

Donate new or gently used handmade hats, gloves, mittens, scarves, and socks for adults and children. Items are distributed to local nonprofits like Cornerstones, Homestretch and ShelterHouse. Donations can be made through Jan. 5 at a number of locations, including the Herndon Senior Center in Herndon and the Pimmit Hills Senior Center in McLean.

Reston Winter Coat Closet

The Hunter Mill District Office and Cornerstones are collecting new or gently used winter coats and new hats, scarves and gloves for neighbors in need. Donations can be dropped off at the North County Governmental Center in Reston between 10 a.m. and 1 p.m. on Dec. 11 and Jan. 8.

Reston Elf Store

The recently renamed Cathy Hudgins Community Center at Southgate and the Reston Teen Center are collecting a wide variety of items. Suggested donations include candles, robes, nail polish, home goods, gloves, shaving kits and flashlights. Donations can be dropped off through Dec. 10 at the center in Reston.

Gift Cards

The county’s domestic and sexual violence services office is also accepting gift card donations. Mail cards by Thursday, Dec. 9, to Vanessa Cullers at the Domestic Violence Action Center or Gulira Alieva at Domestic and Sexual Violence Services.

The police department’s victim services division is also collecting gift card for child victims and witnesses of domestic and sexual violence. Residents can drop off gift cards or send them to Saly Fayez, Victim Services Section, 12099 Government Center Parkway, Fairfax, VA 22035.

Know of any other local opportunities to get into the giving spirit? Let us know in the comments below.

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Meet Comical Coco, an adult chi mix, a 15-pound happy little guy who is reportedly great with other dogs and kids.

Here’s what Stone’s friends at Safe Haven Puppy Rescue had to say about him:

Meet Coco, a 4 year old chi mix who weighs about 15 pounds. This happy, friendly little guy will make his adopters a wonderful companion.

Coco is up to date on his shots, dewormings, and has been neutered. This beautiful little fella is going to be the apple of his new family’s eye so don’t delay in making this love muffin a member of your family!

So, what do you think. Are you and Comical Coco the perfect match?

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Morning Notes

Juvenile Arrested in Connection with Robbery — A 16-year-old was arrested on charges of robbery and weapons offenses in connection with a robbery that happened on Nov. 16. Police said the suspect allegedly demanded a victim’s backpack while displaying a gun and then left the scene on the victim’s bike. The incident happened on the 800 block of Ferndale Avenue. [Herndon Police Department]

Reston Association Receives Award — The association was recognized for excellence in programming for its parks and recreation department’s camps in a box program. The award recognized innovative programs that contributed to the betterment of the community. [RA]

A Discussion with the Fairfax County Fire and Rescue Department — Fire Chief John Butler told the McLean Citizens Association that the department is preparing for the future by stepping recruitment and enhancing community partnerships. [Inside NOVA]

Why You Should Leave Leaves Alone — The Fairfax County Park Authority c=enncourages residents to leave leaves on the ground in order to help hibernating insects like caterpillars and to improve the health of your lawn. [Fairfax County Government]

A Decision on Renaming Lee and Lee Jackson Memorial Highways — The Confederate Names Task Force will meet on Tuesday to determine if the highways should be renamed. [Fairfax County Government]

Photo by David Taube

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After months of deliberation, the Town of Herndon has officially eased restrictions on accessory dwelling units.

The changes, approved unanimously by the Herndon Town Council earlier this month, allow the by-right use of ADUs in single-family units. The move eases current restrictions on renting out spaces inside and in detached units, which are were previously allowed only through special exceptions. The change also removes the age restriction on ADUs to those over 62 or disabled.

“People have told us they want it,” said council member Signe Freidrichs.

The move comes as neighboring jurisdictions loosen restrictions for accessory units. Fairfax County eased rules for home conversions in June.

Councilmembers said the policy change was a good method to increase the stock of affordable housing in the town while ensuring that the town’s essential workers and teachers could live where they worked.

“This is part of an overall revitalization of housing in Herndon that needs to be addressed,” said council member Cesar del Aguila, adding that he was not worried about the impacts of easing restrictions on ADUs.

While issues like changing the character of neighborhoods and overburdening infrastructure may arise, council member Pradip Dhakal noted that people are already renting out portions of their homes.

He said he was hopeful it would boost the town’s supply of affordable housing. He cautioned that it was not a solution to the issue.

David Stromberg, the town’s zoning administer, emphasized that residents would still need to comply with a variety of other requirements.

Town of Herndon Mayor Sheila Olem also noted that residents would still need to go through the zoning and permitting process, requiring code-compliant stoves, staff review of plans, and property inspections before the space is occupied.

Councilmembers debated the merits of allowing the by-right use of ADUs for townhouses. Councilmember Sean Regan suggested asking the town’s planning commission to revisit the issue in a separate process.

ADUs inside or attached to homes cannot exceed 40 percent of the main unit or 1,200 square feet. The maximum for detached units is 900 square feet. Only up to three people can live in an ADU separate and in addition to one family in the main unit.

One additional parking space would be required for ADUs while two would be required for detached units in single-family homes. For detached units, the town council also expanded setbacks from two feet to 10 feet on the rear and sides of the property. Comparatively, Arlington requires a five-foot setback while Alexandria’s setback varies between 1.5 and five feet.

While the effort is intended to allow the slow densification of the town, Stromberg said he only expects two or three by-right uses every year.

Photo via Town of Herndon

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Morning Notes

Herndon workers put a wreath on the front of the town’s government center. (Photo by David Taube)

Seed Money Dedicated to Clean Up Lake Anne Plaza — A local foundation has donated $25,000 in seed money to help clean up Lake Anne Plaza. The beautification project is called “Lake Anne Rising.” [Reston Patch]

Reduced Metro Service to Remain — Metro plans to continue reducing service through Dec. 31 because it has not established a timeline to return the 7000-series fleet in the interest of safety. Nearly 75 percent of Metrorail stations have trains arriving at least every 10-12 minutes. Testing to determine if new inspection intervals are sufficient to safely return trains to service is underway this month. [Washington Metropolitan Area Transit Authority]

Updates to County COVID-19 Dashboard Expected — The Fairfax County Health Department has updated its COVID-19 dashboard after it discovered that roughly 200 reported cases — mostly from last year — were incorrectly marked as hospitalized. While the individuals were seen at emergency department, they were not hospitalized. [Fairfax County Government]

Photo by David Taube

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The Town of Herndon has released its official roster of events for this holiday season.

Residents can choose from several options, including craft pop-ins, improv events, a German-inspired market, and holiday performances. Below is a rundown of events that are expected to run from Saturday, Nov. 27 through the end of the year.

Every Thursday except this Thursday and Dec. 23, residents can enjoy a holiday craft pop-in, which includes crafts for children and parents at Arts Herndon. The event takes place from 10 to 11:30 a.m. and a donation of $5 is suggested.

A holiday market by local artists and artisans gives residents the chance to purchase unique Christmas and holiday presents at Arts Herndon. The market takes place on Saturday from 10 a.m. to 5 p.m.

An open-mic event is set at Arts Herndon later than day at 7 p.m. It is open to all.

But if you’re looking for something more structured, Santa Clause, Rudolph and a wide array of other seasonal characters make an appearance in NextStop Theatre’s performance, “Every Christmas Story Ever Told (And Then Some!). The show runs from Friday, Dec. 3 through Sunday, Dec. 19. General admission is $25, with additional fees on top of that.

The Wicked Olde Band will kick off a holiday performance with a mix of folk, blues, Celtic and light jazz at Arts Herndon on Saturday, Dec. 4 from 7-9:30 p.m. The event is free, but a donation of $10 is recommended.

At the Town Hall Square, all can join for a holiday tree lighting and sing-along that day. The hour-long event begins at 5 p.m.

A arts and craft show with more than 70 vendors comes to Herndon Community Center. Admission and parking are free for the show, which takes place on Sunday, Dec. 6 from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. Residents can also enjoy a holiday performance by Treble Clefs and Friends that day at Arts Herndon from 5-7 p.m. A donation of $10 is recommended.

The Wintermarkt, which brings the old world charm of Christmas in Europe to Herndon, returns to the Herndon Municipal Center on Saturday, Dec. 11 from noon to 7 p.m. The event is free and open to all.

The holiday model train show also returns to Arts Herndon on Saturday, Dec. 18 from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. The caboose will be open for tours from 11 a.m. to 2 p.m.

A New Year’s Ev golf tournament is also planned for Friday, Dec. 31. The shotgun starts at 10 a.m. and the entry deadline is Dec. 26. The fee is $75 per player.

Photo via Herndon Wintermarkt/Facebook

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Morning Notes

All Adults Eligible for Booster Shot — Any adult who received a second dose of the Pfizer or Moderna COVID-19 vaccine at least six months earlier is eligible to receive a booster dose. The recommendations come after the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention expanded the eligibility criteria for both vaccines. [Fairfax County Government]

Reston Board Adopts New Budget — Reston Association’s Board of Directors has approved a $19.8 million budget for 2022. The assessment was set at $740. [RA]

Local Ways to Give This Holiday Season — Local residents can embrace the spirit of giving this holiday season by donating toys, clothes, gift cards, and more. Options in the county include toys for tots by the fire and rescue department and the Reston Winter Coat Closet. [Fairfax County Government]

Photo via vantagehill/Flickr

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Local police are searching for a man who reportedly fired a gun at Sully’s Pour House (Photo via Herndon Police Department)

Before we head into a weekend, let’s take a look back at the biggest stories on the site in recent days.

  1. Police search for man who reportedly fired a gun at Sully’s Pour House
  2. Seven new businesses — including a distillery — are coming to Reston Town Center next year
  3. Condo construction underway by Herndon Metro Station, office planned
  4. TikTok famous Crumbl Cookies are coming to Reston
  5. Reston holiday parade returns to Reston Town Center

If you have ideas on stories we should cover, email us at [email protected] or submit an anonymous tip. Photos from around the Reston and Herndon area are also welcome, with credit always given to the photographer.

Feel free to discuss these topics, your socially distanced weekend plans, or anything else that’s happening locally in the comments below.

Photo via Herndon Police Department

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Morning Notes

People stroll along path at Walker Nature Center (Photo by Marjorie Copson)

Reston Lease Gets Best Transaction Award — Boston Properties received the best transaction lease award for executing a lease with Volkswagen Group of America, which is headquartered in Reston. The award was given by the Commercial Real Estate Development Association. [NAIOP Northern Virginia]

Santa Comes to Town — Reston Association has set up a Santa-for-hire event. Residents can book Santa for a 30 or 60 minutes this holiday season. Bookings can be made through Dec. 31. [RA]

Fairfax County Police Department Collects Toys — The department is collecting toys for Santa’s Ride, which delivers toys to children in area hospitals and local charities. New and unwrapped toys, books, or games can be dropped off at any district station now through 9 a.m. on Monday, Dec. 13. [FCPD]

Photo by Marjorie Copson

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Reston Town Center is celebrating the 30th anniversary of its annual holiday parade.

The half-mile, one-hour parade along Market Street is set to take place on Nov. 26 at 11 a.m. Santa and Mrs. Clause will lead the parade in a carriage. They’re expected to return to light the tree at Fountain Square at 6 p.m. that day.

Horse-drawn carriage rides will continue from 6-10 p.m, the proceeds of which will benefit local charities.

While most of the parade returns to pre-pandemic norms, RTC will not distribute parade bell “out of an abundance of caution for the safety of our parade visitors, participants and volunteers,” according to a statement.

“We hope to continue this popular tradition in the coming years when social distancing is not an issue,” the statement read.

Parking is free that Friday.

Once again, the parade has been nominated for USA Today’s annual national ranking of holiday parades. Voting for the ongoing ranging is open online.

So far, Reston’s parade is fifth on the leaderboard. The tradition began in 1991 and features antique cars, musicians, dancers, floats and other special guests.

Photo via Reston Town Center

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