COVID-19 restrictions have started to ease up around Fairfax County today (Friday).
Now that the county is joining the first phase of Gov. Ralph Northam’s reopening plan, here’s what people who live and work around the Reston area need to know about county-operated facilities.
Parks and Recreation
Parks and parking lots controlled by the Fairfax County Park Authority are open with the exception of dog parks, visitor centers, playgrounds and public restrooms, according to the website.
Athletic fields will officially open for unpermitted groups of 10 or less today under phase one of plans to reopen the county.
Both publicly and privately run pools are currently not allowed to open yet, the website said, adding that certain pools might open for lap swimming during phase one. Pools run by the Park Authority will not open at all this summer.
At schools in Fairfax County, both the tracks and tennis courts have been reopened but playgrounds, basketball courts and athletic fields will remain closed for the time being, according to the website.
Fairfax County summer camps have already been canceled, according to a press release.
For people indoor entering public spaces, the Virginia Department of Public Health announced that they are required to wear a mask or protective face covering. This order will go into effect on Friday (May 29) but the Centers for Diseases Control have suggested for weeks that people cover their mouths and noses to reduce the risk of spreading the virus.
Farmers Markets will look different this year with the implementation of preorder options and social distancing guidelines.
Reston Farmers Markets opened earlier this month with new measures to guard against COVID-19 such as people being able to prepay and pick up groceries, the website said. The Reston Farmers Markets are held every Saturday from 8 a.m. until 12 p.m.
In Herndon, it is still unclear when the market will reopen for the year, according to the website.
All Fairfax County Public Library branches will be closed until further notice, according to the website — but this doesn’t mean that libraries aren’t offering online resources for patrons.
Anyone with a library card can check out digital resources such as e-books, audio files, online magazines and videos.
Starting Monday, patrons can take advantage of some contactless services — including picking up holds — throughout the county.
Reston Farmers Marke will open this weekend with new social distancing rules in place at Lake Anne Plaza.
But it may be a while before other farmers markets in the county, including the Herndon Farmers Market, welcome customers.
The Fairfax County Park Authority says that it will determine when and if it is safe to open other markets after it evaluates operations, staffing needs, volunteer resources and other conditions.
The Reston Farmers Market kicked off the 2020 season on May 9 and will continue to take place on Saturdays from 8 a.m. to noon. The Mount Vernon/McCutcheon Farmers Market is set to begin on Wednesday, May 13 while the Burke Farmers Market is set to begin on Saturday, May 16.
Market shoppers should comply with safety guidelines and social distancing orders, including limiting no more than two family members in the market, wearing a face covering, and avoiding touching surfaces. No pets are allowed.
The town's Farmers' Market is not ready to open but three FFx Co. markets will open in May. The markets will be decidedly different than in the past as the county complies with VA Governor Northam’s social distancing orders & safety guidelines. https://t.co/Ya2KMXecO5 pic.twitter.com/KVTB5LHX5u
— herndon parks (@herndonparks) April 30, 2020
Photo via Photo by Anne Preble/Unsplash
After deliberation from Fairfax County officials, the fate of farmers markets around Reston and Herndon is still undecided.
Though this decision will likely negatively affect local vendors who sell goods at these markets, it is unclear what the long-term economic impact might be.
People who still want to support vendors in this time of crisis can check out places like Sterling-based Baguette Republic, which allows customers to order freshly baked goods online. Customers can score six personal size ciabatta rolls for $6, according to the website.
Ashburn-based Roots to Rise is another local food producer that offers pickup at several locations. Customers can order fresh juices, breakfast and lunch, the website said.
Fairfax County Chairman Jeff McKay issued a statement today (April 14) during a Twitter Q&A saying that county staffers are trying to come up with a configuration that allows people to shop while still practicing the six-foot social distancing requirements.
Currently staff is working on a future plan that meets social distancing requirements for farmers markets using health and social distancing related guidelines and a plan that we can configure things in such a way as to open in a safe manner on a case by case basis. https://t.co/h7H61UCcay
— Jeff McKay (@JeffreyCMcKay) April 14, 2020
Photo via Anne Preble/Unsplash
Spring is around the corner and farmers markets around the are preparing to open for the season — offering visitors an array of fresh vegetables, fruits, baked goods and other locally sourced commodities.
Reston Now rounded up a list of markets in the area so shoppers can plan ahead.
The Reston Farmers Market will open for visitors next month, on April 26, according to the Fairfax County website, which added the market will take place Saturdays from 8 a.m. until noon at 1609 Washington Plaza N.
For those who drive, the web page said parking will be available along North Shore Drive. A list of vendors from previous years can be found online.
Community Foodworks in Reston, which takes place at St. Johns Neuman Catholic Church (11900 Lawyers Road) is part of a larger network of markets around NoVA, which includes a location in Tysons. The Reston location set to open on April 17 and run through the end of November on Wednesdays from 3 to 7 p.m., the website said.
Shoppers can expect roughly 20 various local vendors to check out, each of which offers things ranging from dog treats to fresh pastries, according to the market’s website.
The Herndon Farmers Market will make its debut this year on April 23. It will be open every Thursday from 8 a.m. until 12:30 p.m. at 765 Lynn Street until Nov. 5, according to Fairfax County’s website.
The Reston Farm Market (10800 Baron Cameron Ave) isn’t a traditional farmers market– but is instead a seasonal family-owned and operated business that offers things similar to what someone would expect to find at a weekly farmers market.
The Weinstein family, who owns the market, announced on their website that it will open for the 2020 season this upcoming Monday (March 16).The daily hours of operation will be 9 a.m. until 8 p.m.
Photo via Anne Preble/Unsplash
The Town of Herndon is celebrating 30 years of keeping green with its Herndon Farmers’ Market and the town’s arborist program.
Although the local farmers market has gotten slightly smaller over the years, the weekday market has seen an increase in the variety of products sold, including empanadas, fresh pasta and pickles. Other vendors are not offering different types of fruits, vegetables, meats and breads. Nearby competition from other markets has strained the reach of the local market.
John Dudzinsky, the town’s community forester, says the town is looking to find “value added” vendors as well as more organic options.
Last week, the town distributed reusable totes and coasters to celebrate the milestone.
The town is also celebrating Dudzinsky’s position, which aims to maintain the health of the town’s trees and urban forest. Although this duty has remained the forester’s central task for the last three decades, the forester now manages the market, offers horticulture services to town residents and helps with environmental tasks like stream monitoring.
The Town has also maintained its Tree City status, which is given to comunities that meet standards of sound urban forestry management.
“The Town’s leadership has always been supportive of the Community Forestry program. Along with the support of our town citizens. With everyone’s’ support and assistance the Town has been able to maintain our Tree City USA status,” Dudzinsky said.
The designation is given by the Arbor Day Foundation, which is a nonprofit conservation and education organization founded in 1972.
The market is held on Thursdays from April to November from 8 a.m. to 12:30 on Lynn Street. Information about this year’s vendors is available online.
Photo via Town of Herndon/Facebook
Herndon’s Farmers Market Opens Today — The market kicks off the 2019 season today. As usual, it will be held on Thursdays from 8 a.m. to 12:30 p.m. on Lynn Street from April to November. [Town of Herndon]
Reston Association Volunteer Service Awards Reception Set for Tonight — “Two individuals were named as Volunteers of the Year. Doug Britt, who has been instrumental in collecting environmental data, and Cindy Metcalf, who coordinates and leads class instruction on how to start a garden, both won the top honor.” [Reston Association]
Evelyn Mo Returns to CenterStage Tonight — In this “Meet the Artists” event, the Harvard junior and pianist returns to CenterStage. The event starts at 2:15 p.m. and is open to all ages. [Reston Community Center]
Flickr pool photo by vantagehill
Signs of summer are abound as the farmers markets run by the Fairfax County Park Authority in Reston and Herndon kick off this week.
FCPA’s six other markets will roll in by the first week of May.
The Reston and Herndon Farmers Markets accept SNAP benefits. All purchases under the The Virginia Fresh Match Program are matched up to $20 for additional fresh produce.
Herndon’s market (777 Lynn Street) kicks off on Thursday (April 18) and runs every Thursday until Nov. 14 from 8 a.m. to 12:30 p.m. The Reston market (1609-A Washington Plaza N) starts on Saturday (April 20) and runs every Saturday until Dec. 7 from 8 a.m. until noon.
The Reston market welcomes three new vendors this year, said John Lovaas, who runs the Reston market. Shenandoah Seasonal, a “chemical-free produce farms,” adds a new variety of vegetables and fruits, Bee’s Wing Farm will sell flowers and Ozfeka Catering will bring a mix of Turkish savories and desserts to the market, Lovaas told Reston Now.
The county is also working with the market to carry out a pilot program to reduce the use of plastic bags. Clean Fairfax, a nonprofit organization that specializes in recycling and reducing the use of plastic, is partnering with the market for the program.
Information on other local farmers markets is available online. The Reston Farm Market (10800 Baron Cameron Avenue), which is not operated by FCPA, is open around the year, with few holiday exceptions, from 8 a.m. to 8 p.m.