“The expansion gives many more people in Reston easy access to bike share stations, like the one…at the South Gate Community Center,” Hunter Mill District Supervisor Walter Alcorn said at the ribbon-cutting ceremony. “They especially provide more access south of the Dulles toll road where it is needed.”
The newest installation more than doubles the number of stations in Reston, which had 16 existing locations.
The Capital Bikeshare program originally launched in Reston in 2016. By 2019, the area saw 7,800 bike-share trips, though the COVID-19 pandemic led to a dip in rides in 2020, when there were only 4,400 trips.
“2021 Bikeshare trips are rebounding, and the people are already riding bikes from the newly installed locations,” according to Alcorn.
Among the new locations, the bicycles on Seahawk Drive and Ridge Heights Road have been getting the most use. The Southgate Community Center is getting lots of use as well, landing in the top four most-used of the new sites.
Alcorn did note that the program is still working on choosing ideal locations.
“This is a work in progress,” he said. “This is something we’re learning as we go, and frankly, as people in the community make their choices on where to use these things and when to use them we will adapt and support accordingly.”
Capital Bikeshare locations are chosen with specific criteria in mind. In order to host a new Bikeshare station, a site should be:
- A trip generator — a place that people will be traveling to and from
- A community center or shopping center
- In or near development density
- In proximity to transit for those who want to bike from home to their transit to work
- An equitable location to serve those who want to bike but may not have a bicycle of their own
- In a sunny spot for the solar panels
Alcorn also mentioned that most stations are put on the street in existing public parking spots to save time and money in creating the location.
Fairfax County is already working on another expansion in the Vienna and Merrifield area.
“The future is bright for Capital Bikeshare in Fairfax County,” Alcorn said. “The system throughout the National Capital region has more than 600 locations so far. We are going to continue to expand Bikeshare in the county with planned, grant-funded locations in the Providence District and building on what we have in the Merrifield area in Tysons. This program is one way that Fairfax County is innovating to find new ways for people to get around.”
This year, ArtsFairfax received requests for over $937,000 in funding and allocated a total of $441,900.
The Operating Support Grant program is designed to assist local, nonprofit arts organizations with funding to support their basic operational needs.
In recognition of the challenges that the arts community has faced during the COVID-19 pandemic, ArtsFairfax says it increased the minimum grant amount to $1,000 and waived a requirement that recipients match the funds they receive.
ArtsFairfax President and CEO Linda S. Sullivan says the program was also modified to place more emphasis on equity and how organizations are considering issues of diversity, access, and inclusion in their operations, programs, and services.
“The past year has created an unprecedented hardship for arts organizations and artists,” Sullivan said. “The Operating Support Grant provides arts organizations with critically needed funding for basic operations — funding that helps keeps the doors open — as they develop artistic programming for audiences return.”
The Reston and Herndon organizations that received grants are:
- Arts Herndon
- Gin Dance Company
- NextStop Theater
- Public Art Reston
- Reston Chamber Orchestra Trust
- Reston Community Player
- The Reston Chorale
- Tephra Institute of Contemporary Art
- Virginia Chamber Orchestra
“Fairfax County residents benefit from a dynamic and diverse arts sector,” Sullivan said. “To sustain and grow our cultural capital over the long-term requires a consistent source of public and private funds. ArtsFairfax’s Operating Support Grants are a direct investment in our community ensuring that the arts remain centerpieces and economic engines in our community.”
Now in its 38th iteration, this year’s Century Ride offers 33, 60, 80, and 100-mile routes. There are over 800 participants registered, and the organization is expecting 200 more.
With attendance capped at 1,200 riders this year, spots are limited, but the last-minute registration period will remain open until the morning of the event. The cost is now $85, which includes a t-shirt, a post-ride lunch and after-party as well as route support and photography.
Proceeds will “fund local and regional cycling-related projects such as trail building, bike racks, an after-school bike shop, and helmets for kids,” according to Reston Bike Club, a volunteer nonprofit that formed in 1982 to promote cycling in the area.
“We provide donations to our partners including the towns of Purcellville, Lovettsville, the W&OD trail, Ashburn & Hamilton Volunteer rescue squads,” said Laura Robinson, a member of the Century Ride organization team. “Last year, while not directly bike-related, we donated $1,000 to Cornerstones to support feeding our community.”
Reston Bike Club accepts donations on its ongoing basis through its website.
It also has a grant application that bicycle-related organizations and nonprofits can fill out to apply for funding. The club provides up to $1,000 for each approved grant request.
The promotional materials and t-shirt for this year’s Century Ride were designed by local artist Tracie Griffith Tso. She aimed to capture Reston in 2021, incorporating Brood-X cicadas and lotus flowers from the pond by Fannie Mae’s Reston Technology Center offices into the design.
“By engaging local artists, we believe we can celebrate where we live and ride,” Robinson said.
Reston Bike Club is still seeking a few volunteers for those who want to help but not ride. Volunteers do not get free entry into the ride. They will receive a T-shirt to be worn at the event during their volunteer time slot.
COVID-19 protocols will be followed in accordance with Virginia and Fairfax County guidelines due to the recent uptick in coronavirus cases. Volunteers will be required to wear masks and gloves, and social distancing will be required for both riders and volunteers. Hand sanitizer will be available for all.
The first bicyclists will start at 6:30 a.m., but the ride is a “show and go” event, meaning riders can begin whenever they arrive and show their wristband.
T-shirts and wristbands can be picked up ahead of time at The Bike Lane from 6-9 p.m. tonight (Thursday) or at House 6 Brewing from 6-9 p.m. tomorrow. Wristbands can also be picked up the day of the ride from 6:30-10 a.m. T-shirts are not guaranteed for last-minute registrations.
The ride will start and end at the Reston Town Center pavilion (1818 Discovery Street). After the riders have finished, there will be an after-party with boxed lunches from noon to 4:30 p.m.
“While we have reinvented many of our programs since March of 2020, offering virtual and socially distanced options, it was impossible to convert some of our most popular programs to that format,” RCC Director of Leisure and Learning Karen Brutsché said. “We know our patrons are eager to socialize with their friends at their favorite RCC activities.”
Registration is now open for both Reston and non-Reston residents:
- Bridge — Players with intermediate or advanced knowledge of Bridge are invited to play on Mondays at Hunters Woods (10 a.m.-2 p.m.) and Tuesdays at Lake Anne (10 a.m.-1 p.m.). These games are free to attend.
- Trips — Day trips organized by RCC this fall include the Museum of the Bible (Sept. 16), the International Spy Museum (Oct. 14), Toby’s Dinner Theatre (Nov. 17), and more. Prices vary depending on the trip.
- American Mah Jongg — Open to American mahjongg players on Wednesdays (1:15-3:45 p.m.) and Thursdays (9:30 a.m.-noon) at Hunters Woods. These games are free to attend.
The shift to advance registration for drop-in programs was an initially temporary change prompted by the need to limit crowds during the pandemic, but RCC decided to make it permanent after seeing how the appointment system eliminated conflicts over space for its most popular activities.
RCC also still has some safety precautions in place, including the continued availability of touchless hand sanitizers and virtual programming. Masks are required for everyone when indoors in accordance with Fairfax County’s recently reinstated policy for public facilities.
NextStop Theatre announced yesterday (Tuesday) that it will join other local theatre companies in requiring proof of vaccination from all patrons who attend any live performance at its theater (269 Sunset Park Drive) through at least December 2021.
The theater says it already had a vaccination mandate in place for all of its staff, contractors, and volunteers.
Other policy changes intended to prevent the spread of the coronavirus include requiring that everyone wear masks inside at all times, except for on-stage performers. The theater’s capacity will be reduced by 50% to a maximum of 60 seats per performance.
NextStop will also postpone the opening of their upcoming production of “An Act of God” from Aug. 12 to Aug. 20 to give the company time to adjust to the new procedures and communicate the new policies to those who have already bought tickets. Those who purchased tickets for the first week of “An Act of God” will be contacted by NextStop to reschedule their tickets.
In addition, NextStop will push back its previously announced fall shows of “Sherwood: The Adventure of Robin Hood” and “Disaster (the Musical)” until 2022. Those productions are larger in scale, resulting in more challenging casting, technical, and financial requirements, according to the theater company.
A revised fall 2021 schedule will be announced in the next few weeks.
NextStop will issue refunds to those who purchased season ticket packages, as well as extending them special discounts for “An Act of God” and other shows in the 2021 season.
“We recognize and apologize for the significant disruption that these changes represent,” NextStop Producing Artistic Director Evan Hoffmann said. “We remain passionate about honoring both our mission of creating high-quality theatrical performances for the community and keeping an unwavering commitment to do everything in our power to protect the health and well-being of all those who honor us with the gift of their labor, their creativity, and their patronage.”
While the COVID-19 pandemic has made wedding planning an especially turbulent affair in recent months, couples in Herndon at least have a new option for getting outfitted for their walk down the aisle.
The bridal and event planning shop Lulu’s Bridal and Global Events is holding its grand opening today (Friday) with an official ribbon-cutting at 1 p.m. The store is located in Suite 202 at 731 Elden Street, right across from Herndon’s Old Town Hall.
Founder and owner Luzette “Lulu” Njweipi has dreamed about dresses she’s wanted to design her whole life.
“Since about the age of 16 I have always wanted my outfits to be unique and standout,” Njweipi says on her website.
She started designing and making wedding dresses officially in 2019, but she was designing dresses before then.
“I have a love for love, and weddings and everything dresses,” Njeweipi. “So I’ve always wanted to have my own bridal shop.”
Lulu’s Bridal and Global Events doesn’t just make dresses, though. They also help plan events, put together accessories and decor, and do make-up.
While there are some dresses that can be bought off the rack, Njeweipi specializes in making unique gowns that fit the vision of each individual customer.
“If you have a unique style that you want, we are able to kind of work with you to bring it to life,” she said.
Information on booking consultations and images of some of the looks Lulu’s Bridal has can be found on their website. Custom pieces and designs need to be ordered with plenty of advanced notice so the designers have time to make the items.
“We’re excited about the grand opening and we hope we will be able to serve the community as a whole,” Njeweipi said.
ArtsFairfax, a nonprofit that has been designated as the county’s arts agency, announced the winners of this year’s awards on Tuesday (July 27).
“For ten years, our annual Arts Awards has recognized the creative visionaries who inspire us, engage us, and create transformational change in our communities,” ArtsFairfax President and CEO Linda S. Sullivan said in a press release. “This year’s honorees exemplify the impact that artists, arts and cultural organizations, and those that support them are making to the future of Fairfax County.”
In addition to marking their 10th anniversary, this year’s Arts Awards herald a return for both the awards themselves after they were canceled last year and local arts groups, which are tentatively starting to reemerge from the upheaval of the COVID-19 pandemic.
The Reston Town Center Association (RTCA) will receive the Arts Philanthropy Award, which “recognizes an individual, corporation, or foundation that has provided leadership funding or long-term monetary support to the arts,” according to ArtsFairfax.
A private nonprofit incorporated in 1988, RTCA says its mission is to “maintain a vibrant and viable downtown for the benefit of residents, employees, and visitors,” including by providing public arts, social, and civic events at Reston Town Center.
Since its founding, the association has maintained an Art Fund with revenue from its annual commercial property assessments to support public art and cultural programs, such as the summer Concerts on the Town and the annual Northern Virginia Fine Arts Festival, according to Arts Fairfax.
While the summer concerts were canceled for a second year in a row, RTCA is planning to bring back the Tephra Fine Arts Festival in September, and it is working with Herndon’s NextStop Theatre on a new Theater in the Park initiative expected to launch next spring.
“Supporting a strong cultural proposition is central to our mission,” RTCA Executive Director Robert Goudie said. “It is part of what we think differentiates Reston Town Center as a compelling destination. So we are very proud to receive this recognition, especially from an organization, ArtsFairfax, that is so important to the region’s arts scene.”
Goudie says RTCA shares the award with its partners, including Reston Community Center, Tephra Institute of Contemporary Art, Public Art Reston, Washington West Film Festival, and Reston Town Center owner Boston Properties.
This year’s other honorees are:
- Jinx Hazel Award: National Museum of the United States Army
- Arts Impact Award: 1st Stage Theatre
- Arts Education Award: Traveling Players Ensemble
- Individual Arts Education Award: artist Kelli Schollard-Sincock, who volunteers as an art class teacher at the Fairfax County Adult Detention Center
The 2021 ArtsFairfax Awards will hold a reception on Oct. 15 in The Atrium at Capital One Hall (7750 Capital One Tower Road) in Tysons. Tickets are now available for purchase.
Photo via Reston Concerts on the Town/Facebook
Reston Community Center has announced the lineup its 2021-22 Professional Touring Artist Series.
After a truncated season with limited audiences last year due to the COVID-19 pandemic, the series will bring a variety of musicians, theatrical performances, and speakers to a full-capacity CenterStage starting in September.
“It is our great pleasure to welcome our audiences back to the CenterStage,” RCC Arts and Events Director Paul Douglas Michnewicz said in a press release. “Whether you are seeking an escape from your troubles with sublime dance or want to be inspired by thought leaders or you just need to laugh, the Professional Touring Artist Series has something for everyone to enjoy.”
With seating limited by Virginia’s restrictions on indoor entertainment venues, RCC Executive Director Leila Gordon says the community center was still able to host some artists and speakers last season, including the folk/rock band Trout Fishing in America, jazz violinist Regina Carter, and actor BD Wong, whose talk coincided with the 2021 Reston Pride Festival in June.
Many artists who were unable to come to Reston still sent video messages that RCC posted to its YouTube channel, and some were rescheduled for this upcoming season.
Gordon says RCC has seen attendance at its shows pick up since late spring, but even in June, a good day would be one with an audience of 100 people for a show that normally might’ve filled up the 260-seat CenterStage auditorium.
“We are keeping our hopes high that widespread vaccination will continue to offer protection that will help artists and audiences return safely to the CenterStage this season,” Gordon said.
Unless otherwise noted, all shows are held at CenterStage, which is located at RCC Hunters Woods (2310 Colts Neck Road). Tickets go on sale for Reston residents and employees on August 1 at 1 p.m. Sales open to the general public on August 8 at 1 p.m.
The full schedule for this season is below:
Mutts Gone Nuts, A Comedy Dog Act
- Sept. 19, 3-7 p.m.
- $10 Reston/$15 Non-Reston
- Expect the unexpected, as canines and comedy collide in a smash hit performance that’s leaving audiences everywhere howling for more.
National Heritage Award Fellows at the Reston Multicultural Festival
- Sept. 25, 11 a.m.-6 p.m.
- Lake Anne Plaza; free, all ages
- National Endowment for the Arts (NEA) National Heritage Fellowships are the nation’s highest honor in folk and traditional arts. This year’s fellows, who will be recognized at the annual Reston Multicultural Festival, are Rev. Paschall & Company and The Chuck Brown Band.
The Seldom Scene
- Oct. 2, 8 p.m.
- $25 Reston/$35 Non-Reston
- What does it take for a bluegrass band to remain popular for more than four decades? For The Seldom Scene, it has taken talented musicians, a signature sound and a solid repertoire, as well as a delightful sense of fun.
The Encore Chorale of Reston will be back in person this fall after shifting to a virtual environment last year.
A branch of Encore Creativity for Older Adults, the largest choral organization for adults over 55 in the U.S., the community singing group announced last week that it has now opened registration for the fall semester, which will begin on Sept. 7 and conclude with a free public concert in December.
“We are thrilled to return to in-person singing and live performances in Reston, ” said Jeanne Kelly, Encore Creativity’s founder and artistic director. “Our singers not only learn about the craft of singing and improve their technique, but they can now enjoy socializing and bonding with a new community of friends, which is so important.”
The Encore Chorale of Reston meets on Tuesdays from 2:30 to 4 p.m. at Heritage Fellowship Church (2501 Fox Mill Road). It is directed by David Lang, who has led the group since it formed in 2015 and also serves as director of the Reston Chorale.
No audition is necessary, as Encore’s mission is to “provide an excellent and accessible artistic environment for older adults, regardless of experience or ability,” according to the Encore website.
There will also still be online rehearsals and classes through Encore University, which was founded in the summer of 2020 due to the COVID-19 pandemic.
“During the pandemic, we reinvented Encore so we could continue to engage and enrich older adults during an unprecedented time for choral singing,” Kelly said. “Our virtual Encore University drew singers from 28 states who enjoyed a creative assortment of classes, virtual concerts and choral singing in a totally new way.”
Encore University will offer seven classes this fall, starting on Sept. 7:
- Chorale Sings/Rehearsals
- ROCKS Sings/Rehearsals
- Vocal Technique
- A History of Jazz
- Great Operatic Tenors
- Music & Your Brain
- #1 Hits of the 60s & 70s
Singers can choose to attend exclusively in-person rehearsals, only online rehearsals and classes, or a hybrid of in-person rehearsals and online classes.
Interested participants ages 55 and older can register through the Encore Creativity website or by calling 301-261-5747.
The Fourth of July is coming up this weekend, and with Monday (July 5) as a designated federal holiday, many public facilities and services will be shaking up their schedules.
The Fairfax County Health Department announced today (Friday) that all of its COVID-19 vaccination clinics will be closed on Independence Day, but walk-in services will be available at the Fairfax County Government Center and the former Safeway at Mount Vernon Square in Alexandria on Saturday.
A vaccine site at Springfield Town Center will also be open for walk-ins on Monday.
Here are some other closures that county residents should keep in mind this holiday weekend:
Fairfax County Government
- County government offices will be closed on July 5th
Fairfax County Courts
- The Fairfax Circuit, General District, and Juvenile and Domestic Relations District courts will be closed all day on July 5.
County Libraries, Recreation Centers, Parks
- All Fairfax County library branches will be closed.
- All Fairfax County RECenters will operate at their regular hours.
- Colvin Run Mill, Sully Historic Site, Hidden Oaks, Hidden Pond, E.C. Lawrence and Huntley Meadows nature centers will be closed.
- The Riverbend Park visitor center will be open from 9 a.m. to 5 p.m.
- Green Spring Garden’s horticultural center and historic house will be closed.
- Fairfax Connector buses will operate on a Saturday service schedule on Monday. Check the link for details on specific routes.
- WMATA Metrorail service will operate from 7 a.m. to 11 p.m. on Saturday and 8 a.m. to 11 p.m. on Sunday. Details on routes and closed stations can be found on the Metro website.
- WMATA Metrobus will operate on a Saturday service schedule on Monday.
County Trash and Recycling
- There will be no change in the county’s trash and recycling collection.
- The recycling and disposal centers at the I-66 Transfer Station and I-95 Landfill Complex will be closed.
- The Reston Community Center Hunters Woods will open from 9 a.m. to 2 p.m on Sunday and 9 a.m. to 9 p.m. on Monday.
- Reston Community Center Lake Anne will be closed all day Sunday and Monday.
- All Reston Association offices, including the central services facility and the Walker Nature Center’s Nature House, will be closed on July 5.
The Herndon Town Council will resume in-person meetings next month after 15 months of virtual meetings due to the COVID-19 pandemic.
The first in-person meeting since last March will be held on July 6.
“The Herndon Town Council is resuming in-person meetings due to the greatly improved state of the pandemic in Fairfax County, as the decrease in infections and increase in vaccinations make it safer to gather in person,” said Anne Curtis, chief communications officer for the Town of Herndon.
Seats will be spaced six feet apart, and masks will be required for unvaccinated attendees to comply with CDC guidelines.
Public hearings and work sessions will still be available for viewing via live stream, but interactions via WebEx will be discontinued. Those who wish to address the council must do so in person.
“While I am so appreciative of my colleagues on council, town staff and town citizens for their forbearance during this extraordinary time, I don’t think any of us expected we’d be meeting online for more than a year,” Herndon Mayor Sheila Olem said. “I am excited to see faces and to recapture the energy that is only found in person. I hope citizens will come out and participate as we resume our in-person sessions.”
The first in-person meeting will be on July 6 at 7 p.m. at the Herndon Community Center (814 Ferndale Ave.). The first in-person public hearing will be on July 13 at 7 p.m. in the council chambers located at 765 Lynn Street.
More information on upcoming meetings can be found on the Town of Herndon website.
“The council is looking forward to greater citizen involvement in their meetings, as the opportunity for in-person testimony on issues that come before the council resumes,” Curtis said.
(Updated at 6:20 p.m.) While most schools are wrapping up and kids are headed into vacation mode, Flint Hill School junior Zoe Bredesen is making her mark on Reston’s environment by organizing tree plantings.
A Girl Scout since she was 5, Bredesen is now pursuing the organization’s highest award with her goal to plant at least 400 trees throughout Fairfax County, and she is working with Reston Association to achieve it.
The Girl Scout website says scouts can earn the Gold Award by finishing at least 80 hours of community service and showing “proof that not only can she make a difference, but that she already has.”
Bredesen has been passionate about the environment for as long as she can remember.
“I grew up in a very forested area,” she said. “So, I’ve always just really loved trees and nature, and climate change is something that I’m very concerned about. It’s one that I think demands radical, substantial effort to combat.”
Bredesen recognized that her ability to bring about the large-scale changes necessary to address climate change on a global level was limited, so she decided to focus on a project that would make an impact in her local community.
“I can’t shut down BP Oil or make every county use sustainable energy,” Bredesen said. “…One thing that I can just do as just me is plant trees to take in some of the [carbon dioxide] and put out fresh oxygen to combat atmosphere pollution. So, that’s just what I’m doing as a single person trying to make a difference.”
Bredesen has now been working on the project for two years with assistance from fellow students in the environmental club that she leads at her school. The group has planted 250 trees to date.
While the COVID-19 pandemic slowed their work due to the need to minimize the risk of close contact in large groups of people, Bredesen and her team have stayed committed to her goal.
Most recently, she worked with Reston Association volunteers and environmental resource staff to plant 40 trees along Moorings and North Shore Drive.
The next planting event will take on June 26 at 10 a.m., again in collaboration with RA.
Bredesen says she started working with RA, because she needed to get permission to plant on the grounds of their facilities. She has collaborated with other organizations as well, including Claude Moore Park and a homeowners’ association in Ashburn.
During her project, Bredesen has been helping train volunteers on how to plant and take care of the trees. She will be turning to the Reston community for help at the next planting, since many of her usual helpers from the school environemntal club will be away on summer vacation at that time.
Bredesen says spring is typically the best time to plant trees because that’s when they have the best chance of surviving. Summer into the early fall works as well, but trees have the “lowest chance of succession” during the winter months.
“Now that more people are getting vaccinated and covid restrictions are loosening, if we could get more people coming together to plant trees with the common goal of reducing our carbon footprint, I think that’d be awesome,” Bredesen said.
Photo via Volunteer Reston/Facebook
As Memorial Day approaches on Monday, May 31, a few community and government facilities will be closed or have altered schedules.
Fairfax County Government:
- County government offices will be closed on May 31.
Fairfax County Courts:
- The Fairfax Circuit, General District, and Juvenile and Domestic Relations District courts will be closed all day on May 31.
County Libraries, Recreation Centers, Parks:
- All Fairfax County library branches will be closed.
- All Fairfax County RECenters will operate at their regular hours.
- Colvin Run Mill and Sully Historic Site grounds will be open from noon to 4 p.m. for strolling, but all the buildings will be closed.
- The E.C. Lawrence, Hidden Oaks, Hidden Pond, and Huntley Meadows nature centers will be open from noon until 5 p.m. on May 31.
- The Riverbend Park visitor center will be open from 9 a.m. to 5 p.m.
- Green Spring Garden’s horticultural center will be open from noon to 4:30 p.m., and its historic house will be closed.
- Fairfax Connector buses will operate on a Sunday service schedule. Check the link for details on specific routes.
- WMATA Metrorail service will operate from 7 a.m.-11 p.m. on Saturday and from 8 a.m.-11 p.m. on Sunday and Monday.
- WMATA Metrobus will operate on a Sunday service schedule.
County Trash and Recycling:
- There will be no change in the county’s trash and recycling collection.
- The recycling and disposal centers at the I-66 Transfer Station and I-95 Landfill Complex will be open.
- The Reston Community Center Hunters Woods will open from 9 a.m. to 2 p.m.
- Reston Community Center Lake Anne will be closed all day Monday.
- The town offices and Herndon Community Center will be closed Monday.
- Recycling normally collected on Monday will be collected Tuesday, June 1.
- The farm at Frying Pan Farm Park will be open from 9 a.m. to 5 p.m., and the indoor arena will be open from 9 a.m. to 9 p.m. The visitor center at the park will be closed Monday.
As a head’s up for anyone planning to renew their driver’s license soon, all DMV offices will be closed Monday.
(Updated at 11:45 a.m.) Virginia’s lieutenant governor race is coming to Reston.
The nonpartisan community action group #RestonStrong is hosting a forum for the candidates running to succeed current Lt. Gov. Justin Fairfax, who is vying to become governor, at Lake Anne Washington Plaza on Saturday (May 22) at 11 a.m.
#RestonStrong founder Sarah Selvaraj D’Souza says the group wanted to host the forum to help Reston residents learn how the lieutenant governor candidates address the issues they care about.
“The event is to educate and encourage citizen participation in the upcoming state election on matters impacting Restonians,” she told Reston Now.
Four candidates for lieutenant governor have confirmed their attendance at Saturday’s forum: former Fairfax County NAACP President Sean Perryman, Del. Hala Ayala (D-Woodbridge), Del. Mark Levine (D-Alexandria), and Del. Sam Rasoul (D-Roanoke).
All lieutenant governor candidates were invited, and D’Souza says more may accept the invitation by Saturday.
The other contenders are Norfolk City Councilmember Andria McClellan (D), Arlington businessman Xavier Warren (D), independent Bobby Junes, and former state delegate and Marine veteran Winsome Sears, who clinched the Republican Party’s nomination for the position on May 11 after a convention.
The event will be held at Kalypso’s Sports Tavern with overflow seating at Café Montmartre. D’Souza says #RestonStrong chose those two local, minority-owned businesses as the venues to support them as they try to rebuild after the COVID-19 pandemic.
For those unable to attend in person, the forum will stream live on #RestonStrong’s website, Facebook, and Instagram, along with the Lake Anne Washington Plaza Facebook. The event will proceed rain or shine. To make reservations at Kalypso’s Sports Tavern, email [email protected] or call 703-707-0660.
The Fairfax County Economic Development Authority (FCEDA) is hosting its fifth virtual career fair on May 20.
More than 25 Northern Virginia companies will participate in the fair, which is focused on hiring entry-level workers. The FCEDA is broadcasting the event to more than 100 colleges and universities across the country, and anyone who registers can join for free.
The fair is part of a series that the FCEDA has been organizing during the COVID-19 pandemic, which has made finding work more challenging due to the ongoing economic uncertainty and limited chances for face-to-face interactions. Hiring for college graduates at entry-level positions has dropped 45% since the beginning of the pandemic, the FCEDA says in a news release.
“We want to let anyone looking to start or restart their career – from recent college graduates and retired members of our military to parents reentering the workforce – that Northern Virginia is the place to do it,” FCEDA President and CEO Victor Hoskins said. “We couldn’t be prouder to partner with such a diverse group of companies to introduce fresh faces to an incredible place to live and work.”
The virtual career fairs is part of a talent initiative that the Fairfax County government is funding through the FCEDA to “attract, retain, retrain and grow the workforce that businesses need to succeed in Fairfax County — and to help those looking for jobs find them here, particularly during the pandemic.”
The four previous virtual career fairs in the initiative have attracted nearly 2,900 attendees, according to the FCEDA.
As part of the initiative, the FCEDA also launched a job search website that lists all job postings in the Northern Virginia area and sorts them by different sectors and job types. There are also opportunities to enhance or gain new skills for people who may be looking for a career change.
The Entry-Level Professionals Virtual Career Fair will be held on May 20 from 1 to 4 p.m. Prospective applicants can register to receive the link to the event. They do not need to reside in Northern Virginia.
Employers looking to promote their job openings can still register their companies by visiting the employer resource page.
More information on the virtual career fair, what companies will be attending, and how to register can be found on the FCEDA website.
Photo via Corinne Kutz on Unsplash