Morning Notes

Taking a walk on North Shore Drive (Photo via vantagehill/Flickr)

Fairfax County Commemorates COVID-19 Losses — The Northern Virginia Regional Commission held a COVID-19 Remembrance Ceremony at the Fairfax County Government Center last night to recognize the more than 2,350 lives that have been lost to the pandemic. The ceremony streamed live on Board of Supervisors Chairman Jeff McKay’s Facebook page.

Sunset Hills Road Sidewalk Closes for Reston Station Construction — “Beginning yesterday, June 8, the sidewalk on Sunset Hills Rd. near the intersection of Wiehle Ave. will be closed long-term due to the ongoing Comstock construction projectSee the map for closure area and alternative pedestrian route.” [Hunter Mill District News]

County Board Approves PIVOT Grant Program — The Fairfax County Board of Supervisors voted on Tuesday (June 8) to create a new grant program that will use $25 million in federal COVID-19 relief funds to support businesses hit hard by the COVID-19 pandemic. The program will focus on the hotel, food service, retail, and arts and culture industries with applications scheduled to open from June 23 through July 9. [Fairfax County Government]

Democratic Primary Favors Moderates over Progressives — Three of the Virginia General Assembly’s most outspoken Democrats lost their seats on Tuesday (June 8), as voters largely opted for more moderate candidates backed by the party’s establishment. The upset incumbents included Herndon Del. Ibraheem Samirah as well as Prince William’s Del. Lee Carter and Del. Mark Levine of Alexandria. [Virginia Mercury]

Reston Chamber Offers Grants to Business — The Greater Reston Chamber of Commerce’s nonprofit subsidiary INCspire Education Foundation is launching a BizMaker Grant Program to “promote inclusive entrepreneurship and a diversity of economic opportunities for businesses committed to job creation and revenue generation within Fairfax County.” [Greater Reston Chamber of Commerce]

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Morning Notes

Cicadas Light Up Local Weather Radar — Weather radars in the D.C. area, including one in Sterling, have been picked up a lot of activity in recent days that the National Weather Service believes stem from insects, including the Brood X cicadas that have been making noise around the region since early May. [Capital Weather Gang]

Connolly Cross Country Trail to Partially Close — “Starting on Monday, June 21 and continuing through July 9, 2021, the Gerry Connolly Cross County Trail will be closed between mile markers 3.2 and 3.8 in the Difficult Run Stream Valley Park north of Route 7 (Leesburg Pike) while crews perform maintenance on the Potomac Interceptor sanitary sewer. Signs and barricades will be in place to alert the public.” [Route 7 Corridor Improvements/VDOT]

Reston Chamber Hosts Valor Awards — The Greater Reston Chamber of Commerce, which is serving as host for the first time after taking over from the Northern Virginia Chamber of Commerce, announced the recipients of the 43rd annual Fairfax County Valor Awards yesterday (Tuesday). The awards recognize heroic acts by first responders from the county’s public safety agencies as well as the Town of Vienna Police Department and Virginia State Police. [Patch]

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The First Responders Council of the Greater Reston Chamber of Commerce delivered meals to first responders during the holidays.

The annual drive, which has been in effect for the last 11 years, raised more than $6,000 for more than 500 meals in Reston last month. Food was purchased from local restaurants that are struggled due to the COVID-19 pandemic.

‘Now more than ever the restaurants and First Responders are deservingly soaking up any bit of support from the community,’ GRCC wrote in a statement.

In previous years, food was donated by restaurant instead of being purchased.

Drive sponsors included the following :

  • Dave & JoAnne Adams Group – Coldwell Bank Realty
  • CST Group CPAs, PC
  • Thompson Hospitality
  • Chick-Fil-A – North Point Village
  • Force Security Services, LLC
  • Offit Kurman
  • BluePrint Financial Group
  • BEI
  • Pineapple Payments
  • Edward Jones Investments – Gene Summerlin
  • Maggie Parker
  • Huey & Associates
  • Fatech International
  • Katherine & John Deming
  • Ellen & Mike Jennings
  • Allen & Jennifer Herzberg
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On Nov. 19, The Greater Reston Chamber of Commerce held its 2020 Awards for Chamber Excellence (ACE), recognizing the most engaged businesses, members and committees of the Chamber community over the last year.

In past years, awardees are honored in June at an annual membership meeting luncheon, according to a press release from the Greater Reston Chamber of Commerce.

However, due to COVID-19 restrictions, the luncheon could not take place. Instead, the Chamber held a virtual event to recognize and appreciate the honorees for their hard work and contributions. 

The 2020 ACE Award Winners are:

The full list of ACE sponsors and nominees can be viewed on the award website

The 2020-2021 Chamber Board of Directors was also announced after being confirmed by membership in June.

Image courtesy of the Greater Reston Chamber of Commerce

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The Reston Community Center is working with the Greater Reston Chamber of Commerce, Reston Association, and Cornerstones to expand its Annual Thanksgiving Food Drive this year.

The drive is introducing two “Stuff the RA Camp Van” events this month, according to a press release from the RCC, encouraging people to bring non-perishable food and other items to the RA Camp Van. The van will be open at these places and times:

  • Saturday, Nov. 7 from 10 a.m. until 2 p.m. at the SunTrust Bank parking lot at South Lakes Village Center.
  • Saturday, Nov. 14 from 10 a.m. until 2 p.m. next to the BB&T Bank at North Point Village Center.

The Annual Thanksgiving Drive as a whole will run through Nov. 23. There are collection boxes at RCC facilities, the Greater Reston Chamber of Commerce and other drop-off points, according to the release. People are encouraged to donate non-perishable food and gift cards, amongst other things. 

“The impact of COVID-19 has been profound, and the challenges faced by families struggling to meet their commitments during the pandemic are enormous,” said Leila Gordon, the RCC Executive Director. “We know that keeping our community strong and safe depends on the generosity of those who have the ability to give. We are very grateful for all the support people can offer.” 

Those looking to volunteer can sign up to be a Volunteer Loader on Nov. 24 or 25, or a Volunteer Food Sorter on Nov. 26 or 27. The events will be held with social distancing, mask-wearing, and smaller group sizes.

Photo via the RCC website

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Wednesday Morning Notes

Phase Two of Election Week to Continue — From this morning to Friday at noon, localities will process mail ballots that were received by 7 p.m. yesterday but not counted that night and hose delivered by USPS and postmarked by Election Day. [Virginia Public Access Project]

Thanksgiving Food Drive Underway  Reston Association is teaming up. With Cornerstones, Reston Community Center, and the Greater Reston Chamber of Commerce to help families need. Donations of non-perishable food and other items can be brought to the SunTrust Bank parking lot (11180 South Lakes Drive) on Nov. 7.  A second donation site is planned at North Point Village Center. [RA]

Herndon Man Arrested in Connection with Robbery — “Mohamad Alie Bangura, 30, of Herndon, VA, was arrested for the robbery of a fellow passenger on public transportation. Additionally, Bangura was charged with disorderly conduct and public intoxication. He was transported to the Fairfax County Adult Detention Center where he was held without bond.” [Herndon Police Deprartment]

Photo via Marjorie Copson

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The Greater Reston Chamber of Commerce has opened registration for its Annual Pumpkin 5K and Movement Challenge. 

The month-long fitness celebration offers four different challenges encouraging good health for the community to participate in: a one-mile run/walk, a 5K run/walk, the “Halloween 13” consisting of a 13-mile virtual run around Reston, and several moving minutes challenges of 500, 700 or 1,000 minutes, according to the event’s website

The 5K challenge can be completed by run, walk, swim or bike. Additionally, after registering for one event, all events are unlocked — meaning those who want to participate in multiple challenges can. Registration is available on the website for $30. 

For those who aren’t interested in the races, the three different moving minutes challenges log exercise activity over the course of the month until reaching one of the time goals. Participants can choose any physical activity of their choice to log, from golf, to yoga, to a game of pickleball. 

Participants are also able to create teams to go head-to-head with their neighbors, according to the website. The challenge is also handing out gear, including a commemorative short-sleeved shirt, a commemorative medal, a printable custom bib and more. 

Local businesses looking to promote their products are encouraged to sponsor the 5K, and can do through the website

Photo via the Greater Reston Chamber of Commerce

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Another major event in Reston has been canceled due to health concerns posed by COVID-19.

The Greater Reston Chamber of Commerce decided to cancel this year’s Taste of Reston, the largest outdoor food festival in Northern Virginia, due to the pandemic.

“Taking everything into account, this decision supports the community’s efforts to keep us safe and healthy during these unprecedented times,” according to a press release.

Taste of Reston is expected to return to Reston Town Center next summer on Father’s day weekend on June 18 and June 19.

This year’s festival was originally expected to take place in late September. 

Late last month, the Greater Reston Arts Center announced that it is also canceling the Northern Virginia Fine Arts Festival this year due to similar concerns.

Photo by Don Renner

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The Greater Reston Chamber of Commerce has elected its 2020-2021 Board of Directors.

Dee Kakar, vice president at M&T Bank, will begin his term as board chairman. He replaces Maggie Parker, senior vice president of community relations  at Comstock, who ended her year of leadership. Tom Madden of Visual Impact Productions will take over as chair-elect. Parker will continue in to serve on the board in her new position as secretary.

“The 2020 – 2021 year will be a challenging yet defining year for businesses and the Greater Reston Chamber of Commerce,” Kakar said. “I am committed to the challenge of furthering the conversation on diversity, social injustice, and inclusion. We will invent new ways of promoting business and continue our history of being a leader in the Dulles Corridor.” 

A complete breakdown of this year’s Board of Directors is below:

  • Matt Clary, law offices of Matt Clary
  • Kendal Coleman, CST
  • Charles Kapur, GRCC
  • Joe Becker, Not Your Average Joe’s
  • Matt Brennan, Brennan and White
  • Iris Britt, Iris Britt Consulting
  • Steve Coniglio, Hidden Creek Country Club
  • John Deardorff, Reston Hospital Center
  • Michael Delpierre, Conversion
  • Bailey Edelson, JBG Properties
  • Jame Estep, John Marshall Bank
  • Mike Franz, SOSi
  • Leila Gordon, Reston Community Center
  • Bob. Hicks, Bean Kinney & Korman
  • Mike Jennings, BEI
  • Andy Klaff, Newmark Knight Frank
  • Alex Lane, Northwest Federal Credit Union
  • Hank Lynch, Reston Association
  • Jeff Makhlouf, Sheraton Reston
  • Colin May, KME.digital
  • Mike Misleh, Veatch Commercial
  • Shane Murphy, Reed Smith LLP
  • Andrew Painter, Walsh., Colluci, Lubuley & Walsh
  • Chris Pharo, Leidos
  • Kenyetta Price, Boston Properties
  • Anne Rosenblum, Fairfax County Economic Development Authority
  • Laura Siko, Northern Virginia Community College
  • Kevin Taylor, CDB-X
  • Gordon. Thrall, ,Geurnsey Office Supplies
  • Monica Tressler, Sandy Spring. Bank
  • Tyson Warren, Hyatt Regency Reston
  • Carrie Welch, Comfort Works
  • Charlene Wheeless, Charlene Wheeless, LLC
  • Kerrie Wilson, Cornerstones

Charles Kapur, president and CEO of GRCC said the chamber has been “blessed with corporate citizens” who accepted nominations to serve as members of the board.

Each year, the chamber’s membership elected the chair-elect and new and re-appointed members of the Board of Directors. This year’s slate was unanimously approved by GRCC’s membership, Kapur said.

Photo via Myers Public Relations, LLC

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To help startups and small business owners, the Greater Reston Chamber of Commerce decided to host free online “business success” webinars.

These online events will teach people how to manage various challenges, covering issues like prolonged teleworking and financial strife, according to a press release.

Each event will be held through Zoom, a free digital teleworking software.

“These are free webinars designed to provide education around issues that are on the minds of people and businesses right now as a result of the coronavirus pandemic,” the press release said. “They have also adapted their popular Business Education Series (BES) to a webinar format.”

Though the seminars kicked off on March 27, there are several more scheduled in the next couple of days.

On Wednesday (April 1) people will be able to attend the digital seminar “Practical Tips for Prolonged Teleworking“from 1 until 2 p.m.

A seminar on “Financial Advice for Yourself, Your Business, and Details on SBA Loans” will be hosted on April 3 from 1 until 2 p.m.

To finish off the series, “How to Maintain Wellness (Physical, Mental and Nutritional) When it Matters Most” will be held from 1 until 2 p.m. on April 7.

People can visit the Greater Reston Chamber of Commerce‘s website for more information on upcoming digital events.

Photo courtesy Greater Reston Chamber of Commerce 

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Thursday Morning Notes

Donations Sought for Diva Central Dress Drive — Reston Community Center is looking for formal dresses, shoes, jewelry handbags, and accessories for the annual prom and middle school formal dress giveaway. Donations will be accepted through Feb. 29. [Reston Community Center]

It’s All Business for Reston Chamber’s New President — “When Mark Ingrao, the former CEO and president of the Greater Reston Chamber of Commerce announced he was leaving in June 2019, the Chamber went on a national search to find his successor. In the end, the organization opted to choose someone from within — Charles Kapur, a local banker who was then serving as the Chamber’s chairman of the board.” [Reston Patch]

Accident Closes Spruce Street in Herndon — An accident that happened around 4:30 a.m. this morning has prompted the closure of Spruce Street. Drivers should use Locust Street or Vine Street to detour around the accident scene. [Herndon Police Department]

Photo via vantagehill/Flickr

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The latest tenant to open near the Wiehle-Reston East Metro Station is celebrating its opening at an event next week.

M&T Bank, which is located at 1886 Metro Center Drive, plans to hold a grand opening on Wednesday, Jan. 22.

The company says the new location will “include more business bankers to meet the needs of local small-business customers and feature a new design intended to improve the customer experience by removing barriers between customers and bank employees.”

Customers of the M&T’s former branch at Wiehle Avenue are encouraged to visit the larger branch at Reston Station, the company says.

Greater Reston Chamber of Commerce President Charles Kapur will attend to share a few remarks. 

Image via Google Maps

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The Greater Reston Chamber of Commerce relocated to new offices earlier this month.

Chamber officials celebrated the move from Suite 150 to Suite 230 at 1886 Metro Center Drive at a ribbon-cutting event on Friday, Jan. 10. The organization is responsible for managing business growth and development in the Dulles Corridor.

Late last year, the chamber named Charles Kapur, a banking professional, as president and Chief Executive Officer.

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Monday Morning Notes

Silver Line Extension May Open in September — “The opening of the Silver Line extension could come as soon as September if all things go according to plan, Metro officials said. But with a sprawling $6 billion project, that’s not always guaranteed. The extension is being completed in two phases. The first was opened in 2014 and added five new stations to the Silver Line: McLean, Tysons Corner, Greensboro, Spring Hill and Wiehle-Reston East.” [WAMU]

Metro Board Delays Naming Rights Bid — The Washington Metropolitan Area Transit Authority has withdrawn an item from its board meeting involving potential naming rights for the Innovation Center Metro Station. [Washington Business Journal]

Self-Driving Trucks are in Town — “The vehicle manufacturer Daimler Trucks and the technology firm Torc Robotics are now testing self-driving trucks on U.S. public roads for the first time with Interstate 81 in southwest Virginia as the initial target, CNBC reported in September.” [Fairfax County Times]

Last Day for Thanksgiving Food Drive Locations — Today (Monday) is the last day to drop off donations for the drive, which is organized by the Reston Community Center, the Greater Reston Chamber of Commerce and Cornerstones. [Reston Community Center]

Photo by Jay Westcott

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With the holiday season approaching, organizations are setting up campaigns to help those in need.

The Reston Community Center teamed up with the Greater Reston Chamber of Commerce and Cornerstones to collect food and basic necessities, while Food For Neighbors is sponsoring an online fundraiser to provide meals for those struggling with food insecurity.

On the Food For Neighbors’ website, anyone can donate money to help feed families. They are asking for amounts in $50 increments, which will provide a meal for one family.

Under the RCC, there are more than a dozen locations where people can drop off non-perishable items, including food, paper towels, plastic bins and hygiene items.

They are looking for food items that are unopened, unused and unexpired, including coffee, tea, canned products, oatmeal, dry beans and rice, peanut butter, jellies, flour, sugar, condiments and cooking oil.

Volunteers can sign up online to sort the items.

Below, is a list of locations where people can drop off new items.

  • RCC Hunters Woods (2310 Colts Neck Road)
  • RCC Lake Anne (1609-A N. Washington Plaza)
  • Greater Reston Chamber of Commerce (1886 Metro Center Drive, Suite 230)
  • Atlantic Union Bank (1800 Robert Fulton Drive, Suite 105)
  • Hunter Mill District Office (1801 Cameron Glen Drive)
  • Guide Post Montessori Herndon (13251 Woodland Park Road)
  • Long and Foster Realtors (2100 Reston Pkwy, Suite 102)
  • Reston Association — HQ (12001 Sunrise Valley Drive)
  • Reston Associaton — Central Services Facility (12250 Sunset Hills Road)
  • Reston Association — Walker Nature Center (11450 Glade Drive)
  • State Farm Insurance (11868 Sunrise Valley Drive, Suite 200)
  • Tall Oaks Assisted Living (12052 North Shore Drive)
  • The Harrison at Reston Town Center (1800 Jonathan Way)
  • Washington Hilton Dulles (13869 Park Center Road)
  • YMCA Fairfax County Reston (12196 Sunset Hills Road)

Photo via Facebook

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