To the world, Mykle Lyons was an accomplished jazz musician, a student of the late Ellis Marsalis who played in venues like Carnegie Hall and the Kennedy Center and counted former Vice President Al Gore among his fans.
To residents of Reston, his long-time home, Lyons was also a neighbor, a regular sight at the now-closed Market Street Bar and Grill in Reston Town Center and at local schools where he sometimes volunteered to perform.
Now, in the wake of Lyons’s death in May, Lake Anne Plaza hopes to keep alive his legacy as a musician and valued community member by launching the first annual Mykle Lyons Food and Music Festival on Sept. 18.
“The cultural impact of Reston ripples far beyond its boundaries, and nowhere is this better exemplified than by the contributions of our own Mykle Lyons, an accomplished musician, an educator, a philosopher, and a generous and compassionate soul,” the Lake Anne & Washington Plaza Merchant Association said yesterday (Tuesday) in a news release announcing the festival’s musical lineup.
Organized by the association in conjunction with Roxplosion and Kalypso’s Sports Tavern, the free festival will take place at the plaza waterfront (1609 Washington Plaza) from 5 to 8 p.m. The Chris Timbers Band and Sam Gunderson & The Cactus Groove will perform.
Born in Ocean Springs, Mississippi, Lyons became immersed in jazz through trips with his father to nearby New Orleans. He and his family moved to Reston when he entered middle school, where he joined his first band, Amethyst, according to Kalypso’s owner Vicky Hadjikyriakou.
He later studied with Marsalis while attending Virginia Commonwealth University and formed the Mykle Lyons Quartet, which appeared as the featured act at the 1992 and 1996 Presidential Inaugural Galas at the National Gallery of Art.
Lyons released four professional recordings, including an album called “Heritage” that featured all original music and arrangements, but his primary passion was for live music.
An archived Washington Post feature on pianist Loston Harris II describes Lyons’s bass solo during a sold-out concert that they played at The Lyceum in Old Town Alexandria in the late 1990s, saying that “the instrument seems to be alive, bucking and rolling.”
Other collaborators included the Marsalis family, Don Braden, Lew Tabacken, Ralph Bowen, Vincent Herring, Wes Anderson, Eric Alexander, and Victor Goines.
“Through his travels and gigs, Lake Anne remained his home and the Plaza his neighborhood,” Hadjikyriakou said by email.
In addition to putting on weekly shows at the Market Street Bar and Grill until it closed, Lyons performed at a range of venues throughout Reston, from weddings to the United Christian Parish preschool. He even once coordinated a volunteer performance by Lady Gaga’s cellist at Buzz Aldrin Elementary School.
Lyons also left his mark in Reston by creating the Lake Anne Jazz and Blues Festival, which celebrated its 14th year of existence on Saturday (Sept. 4). His band, which expanded into a sextet, had performed at the annual festival in the past.
“Kalypso’s, Roxplosion, and Lake Anne & Washington Plaza Merchant Association all look forward to honoring Mykle’s contributions by providing an event to celebrate and share the gift of music with our community, just as he would have wanted- in his neighborhood,” Hadjikyriakou said.
Monday, August 30
- Take Me Out To The Ball Game (5 p.m.) — Join the Reston Association for a night at Nats Park. All are welcome to grab a ride on the bus (pick-up at 12001 Sunset Valley Drive) and head to the ballpark. Seats are under cover and snacks/drinks are welcomed on the bus.
Tuesday, August 31
- Owl Prowl (8:30-9:30 p.m.) — Head out to Potomac Regional Park in search of the barred owl, Northern Virginia’s most frequently-observed owl. Listen closely to hear their call which sounds a lot like the owl saying “”Whooooo cooks for youuuu?”
Wednesday, September 1
- Yarn-aholics (7 p.m.) — Calling all knitting, crochet, and yarn enthusiasts, head over to George Mason Library in Annandale for a yarn meet-up. Discuss projects, learn from one another, and share yarn!
Thursday, September 2
- Evening Under the Stars (6 p.m) — Peer into the night sky at the George Mason University Observatory. Hear from experts and glance through the state-of-the-art telescopes to see the stars. Note, stargazing might be cancelled if atmospheric conditions do not allow for viewing.
Friday, September 3
- Broadway in the Park (8 p.m.) — Wolf Trap National Park celebrates the return of live theater and Broadway with their own special show, featuring performances from Hamilton’s Renée Elise Goldsberry and Tony Award-winning Brian Stokes Mitchell. Plus, a few favorites from Arlington’s Signature Theater as well.
Saturday, September 4
- Lake Anne Jazz and Blues Festival (1–8:30 p.m.) — Reston’s jazz and blues festival is back after taking a year off. This edition will be the 14th annual with performances from a number of well-known area groups, including the Doc Dikeman Big Band.
- Arlington Festival of the Arts (10 a.m.-5 p.m.) — This two-day arts festival in Clarendon is back on with artists across the country coming to show and sell their wares. Masks must be worn inside the festival at all times.
Sunday, September 5
- Ghost Hunting Tour (8:30 p.m.) — Start the spooky season off early with this ghostly tour in old town Manassas. The “Ghost Doctors” lead the tour through this centuries-old town, while looking and, perhaps even, interacting with spirits.
- Virginia Scottish Games (9 a.m.-6 p.m.) — Piping competitions, terrier races, highland dance, and fiddling performances are just a few of the competitions that are taking place at this year’s Virginia Scottish Games. Head 40 minutes west from Reston for a day’s worth of athletic competitions, bagpipes, and whiskey.
The 13th annual Lake Anne Jazz and Blues Music Festival returns to Lake Anne Plaza on August 31.
The following groups and individuals are scheduled to perform:
- BIG Whitson
- Shacara Rogers
- The Vaughan
- Ambrose Octet
- Jamal A. Brown, Feedel Band
- Michael Pavone
The event is hosted by the Friends of Lake Anne and is sponsored by Lake Anne, Reston Community Center, Friends of Lake Anne and Foxes Music Company.
Photos via Charlotte Geary Photography
TSA stops Reston man with loaded guns – A Reston man was reprimanded after an X-ray machine at Dulles International Airport spotted two loaded semi-automatic handguns in his carry-on bag. According to the Transportation Security Administration, the weapons were fund when the man went through a security checkpoint on Saturday. [WTOP]
When fiction, fact and fantasy collide — Five regional artists are teaming together to present the exhibition “Building World” at the Greater Reston Arts Center. The exhibition ends on September 13. [The Connection]
Bring back jazz and blues — Roughly 400 people took part in the 12th Annual Jazz and Blues Festival at Lake Anne Plaza over the weekend. Concert-goers enjoyed seven acts of jazz, blues and soul. [Local DVM]
Survival lecture at Reston Regional Library tonight — New York Times bestselling author Tim MacWelch dispels myths and shares facts about surviving in the wilderness. This interactive lecture is open to attendees age 10 and up. [Reston Regional Library]
Flickr pool photo by vantagehill
Two bold black and white chalkboards are up at Lake Anne Plaza, challenging passers-by to write down what they wish to do or achieve before they die.
The public art installation, called Before I Die, is a temporary public art installation as part of the run-up to the 12th annual Jazz and Blues Festival at the plaza this Saturday (September 1). The festival is free and open to all ages.
The community project was started by artist Candy Chang in New Orleans. Chang created the project to examine the way “the wall of our cities can help us grapple with death and meaning as a community today.” After undergoing grief and depression following the loss of a loved one, Chang covered a crumbling house in her neighborhood in New Orleans with chalkboard paint and stenciled the prompt, “Before I die I want to.” Since then Before I Die walls have popped up in more than 70 countries, including China, Brazil, Kazakhstan and South Africa.
So far, the display in Reston includes wishes and goals like building a business, climbing a mountain and adventuring all over. It will be on display until September 10.
Lake Anne Plaza will once again be lit up with an influx of jazz and blues tunes on September 1.
The 12th annual Lake Anne Jazz and Blues Festival will take place at Lake Anne Plaza from 2-9 p.m. The event is free and open for all ages.
The festival is hosted by Lake Anne Plaza and sponsored by Reston Community Center, Fola, Public Art Reston, and Foxes Music Company.
The New Line Brass Band will perform on August 30 at 7 p.m. for an unofficial kick off of the festival.
This year’s lineup includes the following:
- 2 p.m.: Shannon Gunn Quintet
- 3 p.m.: Revelator Hill
- 4 p.m.: Shacara Rogers
- 5 p.m.: Vaugh Ambrose Quintet
- 6 p.m. Gigi MacLaughlin Quartet
- 7 p.m.: Adrian Duke Project
For the latest updates, follow the Lake Anne Plaza Facebook page.
Photo via Lake Anne Plaza
The Lake Anne Jazz & Blues Festival has gone off for 10 years without a hitch, but the 11th time isn’t so lucky.
Lake Anne Plaza has announced that the festival, which was scheduled for Saturday from 1-9 p.m., is being canceled due to rain in the forecast.
According to the Lake Anne Plaza Facebook page:
JAZZ FESTIVAL CANCELLED TOMORROW: Due to declining weather conditions we’ve made the very painful decision to cancel the Jazz & Blues Festival for 2017. This has been a tough decision to arrive at but in the end we think this is the best thing to do. We did look at the possibility of shifting the event to Sunday but the logistics of that are not surmountable both in terms of permit limitations, (ABC Licenses, County Permits, Fire Marshall, etc.) equipment rental and musician schedules.
This is only the 1st time in 11 years that we’ve actually canceled the festival so the Labor Day weekend has been good to us. I know we’re all disappointed. Thank you for your support- we’ll look forward to the planning of the 2018 festival.
The Washington Post’s Capital Weather Gang says there will be possible downpours Friday evening, followed by showers and isolated storms Saturday.
There are several marquee events in the area this weekend, beginning with the kickoff of the JamBrew series tonight in Herndon. Aslin Beer Co. will be pouring frosty mugs, Weird Brothers Coffee will be offering tasty drinks, Lake Anne Brew House/Nordic Knot Pretzels “will be vending fresh baked soft pretzels to the masses,” and there will be much more. Live music will be offered from DJ Cihad, Todd Wright and Tammy Gann, and Turtle Recall. The free event is slated for 6-10 p.m. at the Herndon Town Green (777 Lynn St.).
(Lake Anne Plaza’s Jazz & Blues Festival has been canceled due to rain in the forecast.)
Over at Lake Anne Plaza, the 11th annual Lake Anne Jazz & Blues Festival will go down from 1-9 p.m. Saturday. The lineup of musicians for the festival includes many well-known names in the local music community. The eight hours of music will include performances by Cheick Hamala Dibaté, Sam Gunderson, John Lee & Michael Pavone, Integriti Reeves, Mykle Lyons (sextet), Gigi MacClaughlin, Kriss Funn and Crush Funk Brass.
On Monday in Herndon, the town’s annual Labor Day Festival will feature Virginia wine tastings, craft beers, live music, a craft show, food vendors, lawn games and more. Eight craft brewers will offer tastings, and eight wineries are participating as well. There will also be live music throughout the event and much more. Admission for those participating in sampling wine and beer will be $20, which includes a glass for wine and three complimentary beer tastings. Anyone who won’t be purchasing alcoholic beverages will be admitted for $5, and children 12 and under will be admitted free. The event is slated for 11 a.m. to 5 p.m. at the Herndon Town Green (777 Lynn St.).
The weekend weather forecast calls for a chance of rain Saturday, a partly sunny day Sunday and then a gorgeous Labor Day holiday. Get out there and make the most of it!
Listed below are some other events that will also be taking place this holiday weekend.
(Editor’s Note: This is just a limited list of all the events taking place in the Reston area this weekend. If you have an event you would like to ensure is listed on the website, be sure to submit it to our Events Calendar.)
- Reston Association is hosting a chartered bus trip to the National Book Festival at the Washington Convention Center on Saturday. All ages are welcome, but children under 18 must be accompanied by an adult. Cost is $18 for RA members and $23 for non-members. The bus will depart from RA headquarters (12001 Sunrise Valley Drive) at 9 a.m. Saturday. Registration can be done through Webtrac, by emailing [email protected] or by calling 703-435-6577.
- Reston Association will have four pools — Lake Audubon, Lake Newport, North Shore and Ridge Heights — open Saturday, Sunday and Monday. North Shore and Ridge Heights will be open from 11 a.m. to 7 p.m. each day; Lake Audubon and Lake Newport will be open from noon to 7 p.m.
- The Reston Farmers Market will take place from 8 a.m. to noon Saturday at Lake Anne Village Center.
- Lake Anne is also hosting Sunday Yoga on the Plaza each week, at 9:30 a.m.
- Surf Reston is offering the chance to paddleboard to the sounds of the Lake Anne Jazz & Blues Festival from 1-3 p.m. Saturday. Advance registration is required. In addition, there will be SUP yoga from 9-11 a.m. Saturday.
- Unitarian Universalist Church (1625 Wiehle Ave.) will show the film “A Five-Star Life” tonight beginning at 8:30 p.m., preceded at 8 p.m. by a social and snack opportunity.
- Many restaurants and bars in Reston will have live music this weekend. These include: Vinifera Wine Bar and Bistro (11750 Sunrise Valley Drive) from 7-10 p.m every Friday and Saturday night; Crafthouse (1888 Explorer St.) every Friday and Saturday night from 10 p.m. to 1:30 a.m.; and Tavern64 (1800 Presidents St.) every Friday from 6-10 p.m.
- Crafthouse (1888 Explorer St.) will also have a pregame party Sunday in anticipation of that evening’s college football game between Virginia Tech and West Virginia at FedExField. The restaurant will also charter a bus to the game, leaving at 3:30 p.m., with tickets starting at $29.99. (Note: That price only includes the ride and the party, not tickets to the game itself.)
- Kalypso’s Sports Tavern (1617 Washington Plaza N.) will have live music from Olivia & The Mates tonight from 9:30 p.m. to 1:30 a.m.; and from Sam Gunderson during those hours Saturday night.
- Mr. Knick Knack will provide “unique, heart-centered music” for children Monday from 10:30-11:15 a.m. at the Reston Town Center pavilion. Parking will be free at the Town Center for the Labor Day holiday.
Free Concert Tonight at Lake Anne — The “Take A Break” concert series at Lake Anne Plaza will continue tonight with the Uptown Vocal Jazz Quartet, providing an unofficial kickoff for this weekend’s Lake Anne Jazz & Blues Festival. [Lake Anne Plaza]
Restonians Take Part in Cycling Event for Cancer Research — Reston residents Peter Stevenson and Ed Shanahan both participated in the recent Pan-Mass Challenge bike-a-thon, a Boston-area fundraiser that raised for $40 million for cancer research. [Connection Newspapers]
Yoga at Reston Station Tonight — Beloved Yoga will host Yoga on the Plaza tonight from 6:30-7:30 p.m. at Reston Station, outside the Wiehle-Reston East Metro station. Parking validation for the free event will be provided through ParkX. [Reston Station]
Police Captain Visits School — Earlier this week, Capt. Ron Manzo of the Fairfax County Police Department’s Reston District Station stopped by McNair Elementary School in Herndon to wish everyone a good first week of school. [Fairfax County Police Department/Twitter]
Cybersecurity Firm Raises $26M, Building International Sales — LookingGlass Cyber Solutions Inc. is a Reston-based firm that specializes in threat-detection monitoring. Its clients include private companies and government agencies. It moved into a 20,000-square-foot office at 10740 Parkridge Blvd. in March. [Washington Business Journal]
The 11th annual Lake Anne Jazz & Blues Festival will hit the plaza Saturday, Sept. 2. The lineup of musicians for the festival includes many well-known names in the local music community. The eight hours of music will include performances by Cheick Hamala Dibaté, Sam Gunderson, John Lee & Michael Pavone, Integriti Reeves, Mykle Lyons (sextet), Gigi MacClaughlin, Kriss Funn and Crush Funk Brass.
The free event is slated for 1-9 p.m. and will be held rain or shine. For updates, follow Lake Anne Plaza’s Facebook page.
Sponsors of the event include the Lane Anne Merchants, Friends of Lake Anne, Reston Community Center, Reston Association and Aperture Reston Station.
There will be an unofficial kickoff to the festival Thursday, Aug. 31 during the plaza’s “Take A Break” concert series. Uptown Vocal Jazz Quartet will perform during that event.
Lake Anne Jazz Week (Aug. 30 to Sept. 5) will feature a variety of jazz-themed events, including live music, merchant activities, an outdoor movie and, of course, the Jazz & Blues Festival.
The Jazz & Blues Festival is a free, family friendly, all-day event on Sept. 5 from 1 to 8 p.m. It will showcase a variety of talented regional and national jazz & blues artists.
Here’s what the rest of Jazz Week will include:
- Aug. 30 (sundown) – Summer Film Festival Series Movie “Jazz on a Summer’s Day” (1959 Classic)
- Sept. 1 (7-10 p.m.) – The Red Tree Solo (Café Montmartre)
- Sept. 1 (8 p.m.) – Jazz Trivia Night (Kalypso’s Sports Tavern)
- Sept. 1 (6-9 p.m.) – Mykle Lyons Trio (Plaza)
- Sept. 2 (8-10 p.m.) – The Caterpillars Duet (Café Montmartre)
- Sept. 2 (9:30 p.m.) – Jazz Karaoke Night (Kalypso’s Sports Tavern)
- Sept. 3 (7-9 p.m.) – Take A Break Concert Series featuring the Chris Vadala Quartet (Plaza)
- Sept. 4 (7:30-10:30 p.m.) – Cabernet (Café Montmartre)
- Sept. 4 (6:30-8:30 p.m.) – The Jason Kearse Trio (Plaza)
- Sept. 5 (9:30 p.m.) – Post Festival Late Night with Sam Gunderson (Kalypso’s Sports Tavern)
- Chesapeake Chocolates – Special Edition chocolate musical notes and instruments. Wine Tasting, Sept. 3, 5:30 – 7:30 p.m.
- Reston’s Used Book Shop – 50 percent off all books about music
- Small Change Kids Consignment Shop – Melissa & Doug musical toys 50 percent off
- The Reston Museum – Music sale on local jazz performers Beverly Cosham, Menda Ahart and Felicia Crowley
Jazz & Blues Festival, Sept. 5
Adrian Duke is this year’s headliner. Duke leads the New Orleans sounds of the Adrian Duke Project. Although he has found a home as a Blues artist, by blurring the lines between Blues, Funk, R&B, and Jazz, he has found critical acclaim, audience acceptance, and artistic peer recognition.
- 1:00 p.m. – Ted Garber
- 2:00 p.m. – Cissa Paz
- 3:00 p.m. – Integriti Reeves
- 4:00 p.m. – Nia Olabesi
- 5:00 p.m. – Mykle Lyons
- 6:00 p.m. – Texas Chainsaw
- 7:00 p.m. – Adrian Duke
The festival is sponsored by Lane Anne Merchants, Friends of Lake Anne, the Reston Community Center, and Reston Association. For the full schedule of events/times, visit www.lakeanneplaza.com.