Raydean Patterson was visiting the Smithsonian National Air and Space Museum’s Udvar-Hazy Center in Chantilly when he happened upon a familiar sight: a “Huey” Army helicopter used during the Vietnam War.
“When we came around to [the Huey], there was this real big plaque. I read it and it said it came from the 118th aviation company,” Patterson told Reston Now. “Then, I said ‘I was in that company’ and I looked at the tail and there it was.”
As it turns out, Patterson believes he flew the exact helicopter that the Smithsonian now has on display when he served in the Army during the Vietnam War in the mid-1960s. The Huey had a combat record from 1966 to 1970, according to the museum display.
“I was there for like six months, so if it was there, I flew it,” Patterson said. “We didn’t change planes too often, unless they’re a heap of a pile of nothing…and this was in pretty good shape.”
The reunion between pilot and helicopter was seemingly a coincidental one. Until Patterson spotted it on this recent trip, he never knew a Huey he likely flew sat in a museum so close to his home.
While originally from Missouri, 85-year-old Patterson and his wife Mickey, who celebrated their 63rd wedding anniversary today (Thursday), moved to Fairfax County several years ago to be closer to family, including their grown son.
The couple now lives at Hunters Woods at Trails Edge in Reston.
Patterson served two tours as a pilot during the Vietnam War, lasting a total of about 19 months. During his second tour, he was wounded in the leg. Overall, he was in the Army from 1958 to 1984, moving 34 different times, and attaining the rank of colonel.
Working as an Army aviator during the war was a tough, frightening job.
“Every morning or overnight when I would go out…I had this little diddy I’d say, ‘God, let me get through this one more time,'” Patterson recalled. “Then, coming back, I’d say a bunch of thanks to God…We had a little help from above.”
He had a somewhat surprising reaction to seeing the helicopter where he spent some of the most anxious moments of his life.
“I had a warm feeling for that piece of metal,” he said. “I liked flying it, though I didn’t like those guys shooting at us.”
Patterson did have a slight urge to go back in time a few decades and reconnect with the Huey.
“I wanted to go over there and crank the thing up,” he said. “And go take it for a ride.”
To celebrate Armed Forces Day, residents at Hunters Woods at Trails Edge in Reston will be treated to a parade of antique cars this Saturday (May 16).
The Northern Virginia Regional Group 96 Early Ford Club of America will drive roughly a dozen antique cars by the senior living facility around 10:45 a.m., according to a press release. The Cub Scouts Pack 159 of Fox Mill Elementary School will also participate by standing 10 feet apart and holding flags to represent each branch of the U.S. Armed Forces.
“Our LifeStages Director Paul Adam put together this creative event to honor the Armed Forces while safely treating our residents to a parade of wonderful antique cars,” Cissy Nickel, the executive director of the facility, said in the press release, adding that this event is special because many of the residents are veterans.
Residents and staff will remain inside their rooms and observe from their windows in order to maintain social distancing measures, the press release said.
Antique cars featured in the parade will range in age. Many of them were built between 1932 to 1953, according to the press release.
Photo via Hosea Georgeson/Unsplash
A new volunteer tradition aims to keep the Hunters Woods neighborhood clean.
The first annual Hunters Woods Clean-Up Day will take place on Sunday (Nov. 3) beginning at 11:30 a.m. at the Hunters Woods Fellowship House (2231 Colts Neck Road). Volunteers will improve the appearance of the neighborhood, according to the event’s Facebook page.
The event is sponsored by the Hunters Woods Neighborhood Coalition, which will provide the supplies for volunteers including gloves and trash bags.
During the event, volunteers will clean neighboring areas ranging from Hunters Woods at Trails Edge to Hunters Woods Village Condominiums.
All community members are welcome to swing by help the cause.
After the event, snacks and hot drinks will be provided for volunteers, according to the event page.
Image via Google Maps
The public unveiling is set for Wednesday (October 16) from 6-7 p.m. The free event will also includes ice cream.
The underpass is accessible from Hunters Woods Village Center and from Hunters Woods at Trails Edge. Parking is available at Hunters Woods Village Center.
The piece is titled “Thoreau’s Ensemble.” Ben Volta, the Philadelphia-based artist behind the work, was inspired by poet Henry David Thoreau’s quote, “Pursue some path, however narrow and crooked, in which you can walk with love and reference.”
Volta asked community members and residents to draw a path and add components that make Reston stimulating and worthwhile.
The final design was by approved by Reston Association’s Design Review Board earlier this year. The project is made possible through a partnership with Public Art Reston, Atlantic Realty Companies, and RA.
Photo via Public Art Reston
After a proffer from the developer of Hunters Woods at Trails Edge, a long-awaited project to bring path lights near Hunters Woods Village Center is coming closer to reality.
The Reston Association Board of Directors is considering installing 16 poles and lights near the village center and repurposing ball field behind Reston Community Center that is no longer used by the Reston-Herndon Little League.
RA received $81,300 via a proffer from IntegraCare, the developer of the senior living community. Plans to improve lighting in the area have been in the works since as early as 2013, but were hampered by limited funding.
The cost of the project increased over the last several years. Previous cost estimations did not account for expenses related to Dominion Energy’s engineering and equipment costs.
The first stretch of pathway lights is expected to cost around $100,000. At the request of the Hunters Woods Neighborhood Coalition, RA is also considering repurposing the ball field.
RA plans to use the remaining balance of funds to study, design and consider repurposing the ball field. Overall, RA has $124,916 to complete the overall project — after accounting for costs related to completing tree surveys and preliminary design work.
Larry Butler, RA’s Chief Operating Officer, is expected to discuss the issue at a board meeting on Thursday, Sept. 26.
In draft agenda materials, RA staff noted that the installation of the first stretch of path lights does not preclude additional projects in the future.
Photo via Reston Association/handout, File photo
Plans are in the works to install a project inspired by pathways and connection at the Colts Neck Underpass.
The project, which was approved by Reston Association’s Design Review Board this week, is composed of hundreds of sharpie-based drawings created by workshop participants and local students.
On Saturday, June 29, artist Ben Volta will hold his last workshop for the project at Hunters Woods at Trail Edge.
Participants will have a chance to help create the artwork. So far, seniors and students from Dogwood Elementary School, Hunters Woods Elementary School, Southgate Community Center and Hunters Woods Fellowship House have participated in the effort.
Volta will use drawings created by participants to form the overall artwork, which could have more than 30 colors. The concept is inspired by the connections created through pathways.
The workshop runs from 12 p.m. to 3 p.m. Ice cream will be served and the event is free and open to all.
Public Art Reston hopes to install the project by September.
Photo via Public Art Reston
After a year-long hiatus, the Reston Association’s Pedestrian Lighting Working Group made a comeback at the Design Review Board’s meeting last night (March 19).
Working group members Larry Butler, Rick Landers and Bill Burton presented a progress report as a first step toward developing specific lighting guidelines for RA properties and pathways.
Hunter Mill District Supervisor Cathy Hudgins’ recent call for more streetlights around Reston and some criticism of the lighting at the Sekas development along Sunrise Valley Drive renewed the focus on the lighting, Butler said.
“Lighting is going to be at the forefront for some time to come,” Butler said.
The report highlighted two main goals:
- development of “contextual application guidelines” for lighting
- prioritization of pedestrian lighting in the community — common areas including pathways and recreational amenities, transit station areas and clusters
Butler said that the working group is also adopting some guidelines from the Reston Annual State of the Environment Report (RASER).
Burton showed the Design Review Board the Reston lighting map that was created by overlaying existing pathway lights on a new land use map. Burton said that the working group members walked or biked Reston pathways and corridors to note areas of no, low, medium or high lighting.
The map has four main zones:
- zone 0: areas with no existing lighting for areas where RA wants to preserve darkness
- zone 1: traditional residential areas — most of the Planned Residential Community — that may want additional lighting
- zone 2: village centers, brightly lit schools and athletic fields that will need future lighting replacements
- zone 3: transportation corridor and Reston Town Center
In addition to marking the traditional RA pathways, the map also notes travel corridors along certain roads that bicyclists and pedestrians might frequently use.
Identifying areas that need more lighting is just one step.
“We want to do it right,” Butler said, mentioning LED lights on timers.
Landers added that the technological advances in LED lights provide more options for dimmer or brighter lighting, along with being more energy-efficient.
Vice Chair and Architect Member W. Neal Roseberry praised the three working group members for their effort, which has broad appeal to Restonians. “I think this is really pretty common sense,” he said.
While the Design Review Board supported the map and expressed a desire in making a future action item around lighting, Richard Newlon, the board’s chairman, questioned how much detail should get decided around lighting while still creating an enforceable guideline.
In addition to the progress report, Butler also gave the board a preview on other actions the working group is taking.
A pathway lighting project in Hunters Woods that the Design Review Board approved three years ago now has renewed interest because of a proffer commitment from Atlantic Realty — the developer behind the Hunters Woods at Trail Edge senior living facility — to add new pathway lighting
“We’re working with Fairfax County to get an interpretation on that proffer as to whether or not that money can be joined with our project, our current funding so that we can do lighting down there, because we don’t have enough money to do the whole project,” Butler said.
Butler said that he expects the working group to come back to the Design Review Board in April or May with information on the $81,300 promised in the proffer.
“The face of Reston is changing,” Butler said. “We want to make sure the lighting keeps up.”
Images via Reston Association/YouTube
The Colts Neck Road underpass will soon get its long-awaited makeover.
Public Art Reston recently awarded a contract to Philadelphia-based artist Ben Volta to create permanent public artwork for the underpass.
When selecting the artist, Public Art Reston sought someone who could “address the spirit of the Hunters Woods Neighborhood; respond to the cultural diversity of the community; and develop an artwork that identifies the underpass as a civic facility within the fabric of the surrounding neighborhood,” according to a Public Art Reston press release.
“The project is an opportunity for infrastructure beautification, engagement, education and inspiration,” Delaney said. “It will promote active use of the underpass that links residential areas, Hunters Woods Village Center, two schools, two senior facilities and two community centers.”
Known for his public murals and sculptures, Volta will work on the project with the Dogwood and Hunters Woods elementary schools, in addition to partnering with Hunters Woods at Trails Edge, a soon-to-open senior living facility.
Volta, who is familiar with working with students in participatory art creation, told Reston Now that he plans to engage with kids in the classrooms with the hope of brainstorming an idea, color or shape that will then get incorporated into the art.
Right now, he is working to get the design done before summer break starts for the kids.
He has started making several planned site visits, where he also meets with students, teachers and administrators at the two schools. “I like to start with the site,” Volta said about his artistic process.
While the Colts Neck underpass was “dark with lots of mud everywhere” on his first visit, Volta said he’s been thinking about how the tunnel’s purpose as a passageway between the two schools can lead to a transformative experience for people who enter and exit it.
“Really, the site has a lot to say because of the way people experience it,” Volta said.
Volta said he didn’t know much about the Hunters Woods area before he was chosen for the project, but said he was struck on his first visit by the area’s connection to nature. “I really fell in love with Reston.”
The project has an anticipated installation in the summer so that the artwork will be ready for when students return to classes in the fall, he said.
Photo of Ben Volta courtesy of Public Art Reston
A senior living community at Hunters Woods will kick off next week the first of three job fairs for 200 jobs ahead of its opening this year.
Currently under construction near the Hunters Woods Village Center, Hunters Woods at Trails Edge (2222 Colts Neck Road) is on track for its spring opening, Reston Now previously reported.
The IntegraCare facility will have 210 senior-living units — including 91 independent living units, 80 for assisted living, 24 for memory care and 15 for special needs. A temporary office and showroom opened last year at the Hunters Woods Shopping Center (2254B Colts Neck Road) to provide more information.
The jobs range from working with the hospitality to maintenance teams, according to a press release.
Positions are open in the following fields:
- Resident Wellness: LPN supervisor, medication associate, resident wellness associate
- Dining Experience: chef, associate, server, porter
- Hospitality: lead associate, associate, executive associate, laundry associate
- LifeStages (Activities): life styles associate, transportation associate
- Maintenance: painting and maintenance associate, safety and maintenance associate
The job fairs will take place:
- Tuesday, Feb. 26: 1-6:30 p.m. at the showroom
- Thursday, March 7: 11 a.m.-3 p.m. at the NOVA Medical Education Campus in Springfield
- Saturday, March 16: 10 a.m.-4 p.m. at the showroom
The retirement community will include multiple dining venues, resident gardens, several fitness centers, a juried art gallery and a movie theater, according to the press release.
Rendering by Moseley Architects
The art show “consists of mainly acrylic and ink on large stretched canvas, which includes a variety of styles,” according to information provided by Hunters Woods at Trails Edge.
Jan Dittmar, 68, started painting at the age of 50. A decade later, she earned an arts degree at Columbia College in South Car0lina at the age of 60. She is currently a member of the League of Reston Artists and the Vienna Arts Society.
Locals can view her nun-themed art while sipping sangria and enjoying sweets at the Pre-Opening Showroom (2254B Hunters Woods Village Shopping Center) from 6:30-8:30 p.m. on Friday (Feb. 8).
Photo via Jan Dittmar/Facebook
A new exhibition featuring the work of artists age 55 and above is coming to Reston next week.
The exhibit, “Young at Art,” opens on Oct. 10 at 6:30 p.m. in the showroom of Hunters Woods at Trails Edge (2254B Hunters Woods Plaza).
Attendees can meet the artists behind the event and enjoy local wines paired with desserts. RSVP by emailing [email protected] or by calling 703-708-4047.
Photo via Marion Myers
A showroom for Hunters Woods at Trails Edge, a senior living community under construction at 2222 Colts Neck Road, is now open in Hunters Woods Village Center nearly one year ahead of the project’s completion.
The project includes 90 independent units, 81 assisted living units, 15 units for individuals with special needs, and 24 units assigned for memory care.
“Hunters Woods at Trails Edge promotes Reston founder Bob Simon’s vision of a community where residents can live, work, play and, now, grow older.” says David A. Ross, Partner and President of Atlantic Realty Companies. “We are proud to bring this leading-edge amenity to the community, the first of its kind in Reston.”
Hunters Woods at Trails Edge is expected to be completed by spring 2019. The showroom is located at 2254B Colts Neck Road.
Photo via Myers Public Relations
On Monday, construction is set to begin on 210 new senior living units in Reston.
The units, to be called Hunters Woods at Trails Edge, will be located in place of the former United Christian Parish Church at 2222 Colts Neck Road.
Of the 210 units, 90 will be designated as independent living, 81 for assisted living, 15 for special needs, and 24 assigned to memory care.
The project will offer 20 percent of the independent living units as affordable units, and 4 percent of the assisted living beds will be available for residents who are eligible for the Virginia Department of Ageing and Rehabilitative Services Auxiliary Grant Program.
The project will offer 20 percent of the independent living units as affordable units, and 4 percent of the assisted living beds will be available for residents who are eligible for the Virginia Department of Ageing and Rehabilitative Services Auxiliary Grant Program. Read More