YMCA in Reston Celebrates 20th Anniversary With Fundraising Gala

The YMCA Fairfax County Reston is hosting a fundraising gala in celebration of its 20th anniversary.

This year’s annual gala will be held at the YMCA (12196 Sunset Hills Road) from 6-11 p.m. next Saturday (Nov. 16) and feature a dinner party, silent auction and after-party, according to the event page.

“Our mission ensures that no one is turned away from access to ‘Y’ programs and membership,” the page said.

Last year, the gala raised $280,000 for the center, according to the  YMCA’s website.

Individual tickets start at $150 and sponsorships start at $1,000.

Image via YMCA Fairfax County Reston

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Upcoming Fundraiser to Benefit Indigenous Amazon Population

An upcoming fundraiser in Reston will help save the Amazon Rainforest.

There will be family fun activities including a yard sale, a ranger station, live music and crafts for kids at the Pony Barn Picnic Area (Steeplechase Drive and Triplecrown Road) on Sunday (Oct. 27) from 10 a.m. until 4 p.m., according to a press release.

Admission is free but all of the donation funds from the event will go towards the Amazon Conservation Team, an organization that preserves indigenous communities and natural ecosystems, the press release said.

“The Amazon Rainforest supplies 20 percent of the oxygen we need to live on Earth; however, the size of three football fields are being deforested every minute at the Amazon, according to latest government data,” the press release said.

The event is sponsored by several local businesses around the Reston community.

All are welcome to attend. Anyone wanting to sponsor a yardsale table can email the event organizer.

Photo via Reston Association

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Upcoming Herndon 5k Aims to Stop Driving Under the Influence

A 5k in Herndon this weekend aims to end people driving under the influence of drugs and alcohol.

From 9 a.m. until midnight this Saturday (Oct. 12), the Walk Like MADD & MADD Dash 5k will raise money to prevent underage drinking, help victims and support educational outreach. The race will start at the Herndon Police Department (397 Herndon Pkwy #300).

The organization was started in 1980 by a mother who lost her daughter to a drunk driving incident, according to the organization’s website. The organization boasts helping nearly 1 million drunk and drugged driving victims and survivors.

So far, the event has raised more than $1,800 with 22 participants, according to the event page.

People can register or donate online.

Image via Facebook

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Fashion Show, Raffle in Reston to Raise Funds to Battle Breast Cancer

Breast cancer survivors will model top name brands to raise funds and awareness at Reston Town Center next week.

The Runway to the Cure Fashion Show will take place on Saturday (Oct. 19) from 6-9 p.m. at 11900 Market Street and will mark the event’s third year. Tickets are donation-based but event organizers recommend a $25 donation.

Attendees will have the chance to participate in a raffle and silent auction as well. Raffle tickets are $5 each or five for $20.

The money raised from the event will benefit the Susan G. Komen Foundation and the Step Sisters organization, both of which help women battling breast cancer.

Event sponsors include Scout and Molly’s Boutique, Hyatt Reston, Reston Town Center, Reston Hospital Center and Washington Radiology.

People who have questions or want to donate items for the auctions can call Jane Abraham at 703-362-5860.

Photos via Runway to the Cure/Facebook

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Charity Walk to Help People Affected by Crohn’s, Ulcerative Colitis

An upcoming walk aims to raise money to assist people with Crohn’s disease and ulcerative colitis.

Take Steps, a national organization, plans to host charity walk on Saturday, Oct. 5, at Woodland Park Crossing (12960 Highland Crossing Drive) starting at 10 a.m.

All of the funds will go toward research for cures, patient advocacy and community education, according to the website.

There will be food and music at the event, a press release said, adding that the walk is also dog and family-friendly.

Participants can register as a team, an individual or as a “free agent” to join another team. During registration, participants can donate money and start a sponsorship campaign so their friends can donate as well.

“Crohn’s disease is an inflammatory bowel disease that causes chronic inflammation of the gastrointestinal tract,” according to the Crohn’s and Colitis Foundation. Though similar, ulcerative colitis only affects the inner lining of the large intestine, according to the site.

Over three million men and women are affected by the illnesses around the United States, according to the foundation.

Photo via Take Steps

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Scrawl Books Hosting Back-to-School Party Saturday to Help Kids in Need

Scrawl Books is hosting a family-friendly party to benefit an organization that high-quality early learning for kids.

The Reston bookstore will have fun activities for kids and parents scattered throughout the store and each half-hour a staff member will read a book for the audience. The event will run from 10:30 a.m. until 2 p.m. at 11911 Freedom Drive on Saturday (Sept. 7).

Donations will be accepted on-site and a portion of sales will benefit the Northern Virginia Association for the Education of Young Children.

The organization’s goal is to create a safe, healthy and happy learning environment for every kid under the age of eight.

Photo courtesy of Rachel Wood

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Monster Drawing Rally Set for September in Reston Town Center

More than 50 artists will converge at the Greater Reston Art Center’s gallery in Reston Town Center next month for the annual Monster Drawing Fundraiser.

The rally turns the gallery into a public performance space as artists create artworks on-site using the media of choice from 4-8 p.m.

Completed works are hung on the wall and are available for purchase at $75 each. If more than one person is interested in an artwork, the buyer will be determined through a drawing.

All proceeds from the event will benefit GRACE’s exhibition programs.

The event, which is sponsored by Collective Arts Brewing, is free and open for all.

Volunteers can sign up online to help with the event.

Photo via GRACE

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Giving Circle’s Empty Bowls Fundraiser Set for April 26

The 12th annual Empty Bowls fundraiser will be held on Friday, April 26 from 5:30-9 p.m. at Floris United Methodist Church (13600 Frying Pan Road).

By providing a $25 donation, attendees can eat soups, breads and desserts donated by area restaurants and take home what organizers call a “unique artisanal bowl.” All proceeds from the event will help fund, Food for Others, the area’s largest food pantry.

The fundraiser is part of an international effort to fight higher and increase awareness about poverty-related issues. The idea was developed by a Michigan-based art teacher who wanted to find a way to raise funds for hunger relief organizations while giving donors tangible reminds about the problem of food insecurity.

It is hosted by the Giving Circle of Hope, which is part of the Community Foundation for Northern Virginia. Since the events inception, it has raised $300,000 in the past 11 years. In Fairfax County, six percent of residents live in poverty and 1 in 14 children are food insecure.

For more information and to buy tickets online, visit www.givingcircleofhope.org.

Photo via Giving Circle of HOPE

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Herndon 5K Benefiting Herndon High School Set for Saturday

As the weather continues to slowly warm up, the Herndon 5K Walk/Run is set to place on Saturday (March 23).

The proceeds from the 5K will go toward the Herndon High School’s All-Night Grad, prom and the Paige Saucedo Memorial ESOL Scholarship Fund.

Prospective participants can register online for $35 until 8 p.m. on Thursday (March 21). After that, the price increases to $45.

People can pick up their packets at the Potomac River Running store at 11911 Democracy Drive from 4-7 p.m. on Friday (March 22) or at the Herndon High School (700 Bennett Street) at 8 a.m. on Saturday.

The 5K starts at 9 a.m. starts and ends at the high school. The course makes a loop from Kingstream Circle to Coat Ridge Road and then to Kingstream Drive.

Runners can expect food and prizes by the finish line.

Awards will go to the overall male and female finishers and the top male and female finishers in each of the following age groups: 13 and under, 14-18, 19-29, 30-39, 40-49, 50-65 and finally 66 and older.

Image via Potomac River Running 

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‘Galentine’s Party’ Fundraiser and More This Weekend in Reston

Valentine’s Day is come and gone, but Scrawl Books plans to keep spreading love with a fundraiser this Sunday (Feb. 17).

The post-Valentine’s “Galentine’s Party” — which originated from an episode about female friendship on the show “Parks and Recreation” — will benefit Cornerstones and the Laurel Learning Program.

Authors Orly Konig and Erika Marks will discuss books, writing and life, according to the event description. The fundraiser will also have raffles and giveaways.

Interested? The fundraiser runs from 6:30-8:30 p.m. at 11911 Freedom Drive. Scrawl Books asks for a $10 suggested donation at the door.

Tomorrow (Feb. 16)

  • Raptors Up Close (11 a.m.-noon) — Locals can join naturalists at the Walker Nature Center for programs designed for a mix of ages. Participants will be able to take an exploratory hike, explore outside or participate in an indoor Nature House program to learn about the natural world. Costs range from $7 to $9 per person.
  • Glowing LED Artworks (2-3 p.m.) — Observe light and sculpture using LED’s, batteries and art materials. and then create your own at the Reston Regional Library. The event is for kids ages 6 to 11.
  • Astronomy Festival (6 p.m.) — The Observatory at Turner Farm Park in Great Falls will have guided stargazing, telescope viewing and listening to ancient stories about constellations around a campfire. Hot chocolate and snacks will also be available for purchase. The cost is $8 per person if you register online before the event and $10 at the door.
  • Stage Reading “Haint So” (7:30-9:30 p.m.) — The original work explores “the rich tradition of folklore, superstition and the mystical spirits of the dark mountains in Virginia,” according to the event description. Intrigued? Register for the ArtSpace Herndon event.

Sunday (Feb. 17)

  • Walk or run (8 a.m.) — Join the group for either a 3- or 6-mile walk, a 10-mile run or a 12-mile trail run. Bring your running shoes to the South Lakes Village Center.
  • Herndon Library Board Games (1-2:30 p.m.) — Adults are invited to play classic board games. No registration is necessary.
  • Full Moon Nature Hike and Campfire (5:30-7:30 p.m.) — Locals can explore nature while a naturalist guide will point out signs of creatures in the woods at Riverbend Park in Great Falls. Participants can enjoy a campfire with s’mores after the hike. The cost is $9 per person.

File photo

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Fundraising Starts to Help Family After Herndon Home Fire

A GoFundMe page is raising funds for the family displaced after a fire broke out in their home in Herndon yesterday.

The campaign, which was created and activated today (Feb. 1), aims to help Tim Gaffney’s family cover the costs of “small things that add up” — clothes, toiletries, shoes, coats and more — with the hope that insurance will cover the larger losses.

In just a few hours, the GoFundMe page has raised nearly $2,000.

The Red Cross has put the family up in a hotel, according to the fundraiser.

The GoFundMe page says the following:

January 31, 2019 Tim Gaffney woke to the smell of smoke. The entire garage was engulfed and it was quickly moving to the house. He woke Ryan and Tara and they were able to get out. Janeen and Sofia were in MA at a skating event.

Flash forward 24 hours and my oldest friend in the world and her family are homeless.

The Red Cross has put them up in a hotel and friends have rallied around them. But this is just day one.

Our hope of course is that insurance will cover the larger losses. House. Cars. Boat. It’s all the small things that add up. Clothes. Toiletries. Shoes. Coats.

We are asking for any help you can provide to get this family through the next really difficult months until they find their new normal.

Anyone not comfortable with sending money is more than welcome to send gift cards. Anything — I mean anything — will be so appreciated.

Thank you on on behalf of Tim, Janeen, Ryan, Sofia and Tara.

Firefighters had the fire under control in about two hours after arriving at the house in the 12100 block of Westwood Hills Drive around 6:38 a.m. on Jan. 31.

The three people in the home at the time of the fire were able to self-evacuate. Two of the occupants received treatment for smoke inhalation, according to the fire department.

Photo via @ffxfirerescue/Twitter

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Capitol Steps Fundraiser Nets $400,000 for Embry Rucker Community Shelter

The 36th annual Capitol Steps fundraiser performance on Sunday (Jan. 27) raised nearly $400,000 for Cornerstones to help families in the Embry Rucker Community Shelter.

The D.C.-based political satire group is known for mocking both sides of the aisle in songs and comedy skits. A sold-out crowd of 700 attendees came to this year’s annual benefit show at the Hyatt Regency Reston.

“Even though we live in one of the wealthiest counties in the nation, more than 1,000 men, woman and children — 30 percent of whom are children — are homeless in this community,” Jeff Detwiler, the president and chief executive officer of Long and Foster, said before Capitol Steps performed. “We believe that supporting Cornerstones in its mission makes us as a community stronger.”

Bob Van Hoecke, co-chair of the event, noted that some attendees may be experiencing stress from the longest partial federal government shutdown, which ended days before the performance. “Cornerstones is here for anyone in our community in need because of the funds we are able to raise tonight and throughout the year.”

Del. Ken Plum rallied the crowd for the annual “Empty the Shelter” Paddle Auction and then thanked them after they raised $100,000 for Cornerstones’ rapid re-housing programs.

At the end of the night, a total of $412,557 had been raised for the cause, according to information provided by Cornerstones — a sizable increase from recent years. (The annual benefit performance raised roughly $340,000 in 2018 and almost $300,000 in 2017.)

Photos by Chip McCrea Photography

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Glory Days in North Point Hosts South Lakes HS Fundraiser Today

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If you’re looking for a post-work drink or bite to eat, stopping by Glory Days at North Point Village Center could also help out the local high school.

Today from 5-9 p.m., the sports bar and restaurant will be raising money for the South Lakes High School class of 2021, which is already fundraising for graduation events.

A manager at Glory Days said the restaurant regularly hosts “dining for dollars” events to support local organizations. All meals at the restaurant are eligible for the donation.

“Once you eat, you put your receipt at an envelope at the front,” the manager said. “We will donate 10 percent of the bill.”

Photo via North Point Village Center

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Chipotle to Fundraise for South Lakes HS Girls Basketball on Monday

Seahawks fans can head to the Chipotle in the South Lakes Village Shopping Center next week to help raise funds for South Lakes High School girls basketball.

The Chipotle at 11160 South Lakes Drive will donate 33 percent of proceeds for customers who display the flyer or mention the Seahawks.

The fundraiser runs from 4 p.m. to 8 p.m. on Monday (Jan. 21).

South Lakes High School girls varsity basketball won their eighth consecutive game at Washington-Lee High School on Jan. 8.

Photo via South Lakes High School Basketball/Facebook

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