As Memorial Day approaches on Monday, May 31, a few community and government facilities will be closed or have altered schedules.
Fairfax County Government:
- County government offices will be closed on May 31.
Fairfax County Courts:
- The Fairfax Circuit, General District, and Juvenile and Domestic Relations District courts will be closed all day on May 31.
County Libraries, Recreation Centers, Parks:
- All Fairfax County library branches will be closed.
- All Fairfax County RECenters will operate at their regular hours.
- Colvin Run Mill and Sully Historic Site grounds will be open from noon to 4 p.m. for strolling, but all the buildings will be closed.
- The E.C. Lawrence, Hidden Oaks, Hidden Pond, and Huntley Meadows nature centers will be open from noon until 5 p.m. on May 31.
- The Riverbend Park visitor center will be open from 9 a.m. to 5 p.m.
- Green Spring Garden’s horticultural center will be open from noon to 4:30 p.m., and its historic house will be closed.
- Fairfax Connector buses will operate on a Sunday service schedule. Check the link for details on specific routes.
- WMATA Metrorail service will operate from 7 a.m.-11 p.m. on Saturday and from 8 a.m.-11 p.m. on Sunday and Monday.
- WMATA Metrobus will operate on a Sunday service schedule.
County Trash and Recycling:
- There will be no change in the county’s trash and recycling collection.
- The recycling and disposal centers at the I-66 Transfer Station and I-95 Landfill Complex will be open.
- The Reston Community Center Hunters Woods will open from 9 a.m. to 2 p.m.
- Reston Community Center Lake Anne will be closed all day Monday.
- The town offices and Herndon Community Center will be closed Monday.
- Recycling normally collected on Monday will be collected Tuesday, June 1.
- The farm at Frying Pan Farm Park will be open from 9 a.m. to 5 p.m., and the indoor arena will be open from 9 a.m. to 9 p.m. The visitor center at the park will be closed Monday.
As a head’s up for anyone planning to renew their driver’s license soon, all DMV offices will be closed Monday.
After a year off, the two-decade-old Ride of the Patriots in Fairfax is back and ready to rumble.
With the 2020 iteration canceled due to the pandemic, the Memorial Day weekend event and ride is returning to the D.C. area, but it will be scaled down a bit compared to previous years.
It will take place Friday (May 28) through Sunday (May 30) starting at Patriot Harley-Davidson on Fairfax Boulevard in Fairfax.
There will be vendors, food trucks, an appearance from the “Saluting Marine,” and a gathering of bikers.
There will also be two rides, each limited to 225 riders. On Saturday, the ride will begin at 11 a.m., and on Sunday, it will depart from Patriot Harley-Davidson at 11 a.m. to join up with AMVet’s Rolling to Remember in D.C. Registration to ride cost $25.
First held in 1999, the ride’s purpose is to remember and commemorate military veterans, particularly those who fought in the Vietnam War and those who remain missing in action. In recent years, there’s been a focus on veteran suicide.
An average of 17 veterans die by suicide per day, according to a recent report from the U.S. Department of Veteran Affairs.
In previous years, upwards of 12,000 bikers would join in on the festivities from across Northern Virginia and even the country. But this year, there will be significantly fewer participants.
Kevin Hardy, the event’s organizer since 2017 and marketing director at Patriot Harley-Davidson, thinks there will be about 300 to 400 bikes this year.
Hardy says the constantly changing COVID-19 health regulations over the last few months made it tough to plan for more than that. He’s excited, though, that the end of most capacity limits starting May 28 will allow Ride of the Patriots to happen again this year.
“You don’t want to not have it for two years. I’m a big believer in things being front of mind,” Hardy said. “If you don’t [hold the event], it kinda fades away with time.”
Rolling Thunder, the similar, long-running Memorial Day weekend event, officially ended in 2019, leaving smaller events like Ride of the Patriots to fill the void.
Hardy believes bringing awareness to veteran issues remains of the utmost importance. He also has a personal connection to the topic, with his father being a retired military colonel who served in the U.S. Army for 27 years.
“I think there’s a lot of change going in America today and a lot of what [these veterans] did enabled people to speak their mind and protest certain things,” Hardy said. “A lot of what America is and those rights were fought for by veterans.”
After starting in Fairfax, the Ride of the Patriot will proceed down Route 50 towards the District.
The Fairfax County Police Department confirmed to Reston Now that they will temporarily close Route 50 between Patriot Drive and I-495 “to allow safe passage” for the riders starting around 11 a.m. on Saturday and at 10 a.m. on Sunday.
The hope is that next year’s event will be back to 2019 attendance levels with thousands of bikers making their way down Route 50 to pay their respects to those who have served.
“We’ll be ready to go in 2022 for thousands and thousands of bikes heading from here to D.C. in honor of veterans,” Hardy said.
Photo courtesy Kevin Hardy
Editor’s note: Reston Now will be taking Memorial Day weekend off starting tomorrow (Friday). Except in the case of breaking news, publishing will resume on Tuesday (June 1).
More Early Voting Sites to Open Saturday — Fairfax County will add 13 more early voting sites for the June 8 Democratic primary on Saturday (May 29), bringing the total number of locations up to 16. In the Reston/Herndon area, the Herndon Fortnightly and Great Falls libraries will join the North County Governmental Center, which has hosted early voting since April 24. [Fairfax County Government]
Couple Killed in Springfield Shooting — “A husband and wife are dead following a shooting in a residential area of Springfield, Virginia, on Wednesday morning, according to police. Police Chief Kevin Davis said authorities believe the ‘shooter or shooters’ are ‘known to a relative of our two victims.'” [WTOP]
Fairfax County Considers Renaming Two Highways — “A list of possible new names for Lee Highway (Route 29) and Lee-Jackson Memorial Highway (Route 50) could be ready as soon as this December. On July 13, the Fairfax County Board of Supervisors could approve about 25 members for a task force to examine the possibility of renaming the highways and appoint the group’s chair.” [Tysons Reporter]
Herndon Businesses Burglarized — The Herndon Police Department is investigating multiple commercial burglaries where individuals smashed businesses’ front doors and windows with rocks and stole cash and cash registers. The first incident occurred overnight between May 17 and May 18 in the 600 block of Carlisle Drive, and the second happened shortly after 1 a.m. on May 18 in the 300 block of Elden Street. [HPD]
Herndon to Hold Memorial Day Observance — The Town of Herndon will observe Memorial Day on Monday (May 31) at Chestnut Grove Cemetery on Dranesville Road with an Avenue of Flags that will be erected from dawn until dusk. The holiday takes place on the final Monday of every May as “a day to remember all American lives lost during military service.” [Patch]
Photo via vantagehill/Flickr
Monday, May 24
- Citizenship Game Show (6 p.m.) — If you are trying to become a citizen or simply looking to brush up on American history, jump on this virtual game show hosted by the Richard Byrd Library staff. There will be over 100 questions to answer.
Tuesday, May 25
- Outdoor Family Storytime (10 a.m.) — Sit outside in the plaza at Shirlington Library in Arlington for some interactive story time. Intended for young kids, there will be rhymes, picture books, and plenty of songs.
Wednesday, May 26
- Crash Funk Brass Band (5 p.m.) — Part of the Jewish Film and Music Festival, this local brass Klezmer band will perform in Lincoln Park in D.C. for free. Grab a coffee, take a seat, and listen to this unique genre of European Jewish folk music.
Thursday, May 27
- Civic Duty at Jammin Java (7 p.m.) — To celebrate Jammin Java’s 20th anniversary, the music venue is putting on a jam-packed series of free, donation-only outdoor concerts. Up this week is local band Civic Duty, who describe themselves as being influenced by Nirvana and the Beatles.
Friday, May 28
- Bridesmaids at the Drive-In (8 p.m.) — Grab your fully-vaccinated friends, hop in the car, and take in a drive-in movie at Buzzard Point in D.C. This six-week series is being organized by the Capitol Riverfront BID, and all proceeds are being donated to local charities. This week’s movie is the 2011 comedy “Bridesmaids.”
Saturday, May 29
- 100 Years of the Glen Echo Park Carousel (10 a.m.-6 p.m.) — Celebrate 100 years of the area’s most celebrated carousel. The Dentzel Carousel, a national historic landmark, was closed for nearly two years for restoration and the pandemic. So, take a ride on a lion, tiger, or bear…oh my!
- Meow Day (10 a.m.-5 p.m.) — This day-long virtual celebration hosted by the Humane Rescue Alliance in D.C. will have tons of “CATivities.” This includes a lesson on doing yoga with your cat, a virtual tour of a cat NICU, and a chance to ask experts about why your cat barfs on your pillow at night (or is that just my cat?).
Sunday, May 30
- The Ride of Patriots (11 a.m.) — A smaller, more localized version of Rolling Thunder (which officially ended in 2019) will be one of many events taking place over Memorial Day Weekend to honor those who died serving in the U.S. military. All riders will meet at the Patriot Harley-Davidson in Fairfax before venturing over to D.C. to pay respects at memorials.
Monday, May 31
- Viva! Vienna! (10 a.m.-6 p.m.) — This long-running festival returns after taking 2020 off due to the pandemic. There will be amusement rides, games, and foods. All proceeds will go to charitable and community organizations and will take place over the entire weekend.
Photo via Flickr/Link576
New-Grad Virtual Career Fair is Today — The Fairfax County Economic Development Authority is holding a virtual job fair today for new graduations from 1-4 p.m. Almost a dozen companies including Northrop Grumman, NTT Data Federal and Sparks will attend the event. [FCEDA]
Athletic Fields to Reopen Tomorrow — All outdoor athletic fields in Fairfax County will be open beginning tomorrow (Friday). This includes more than 850 athletic fields, including synthetic turf fields. At Fairfax County parks and public schools. [Fairfax County Government]
Honoring the Fallen in a Small Way — Members of the Post 184 Avenue of Flags Committee did not hold a Memorial Day ceremony at Chestnut Grove Cemetery in Herndon. Instead, the group received permission to place small American stick flags with name cards indicating the fallen soldier being honored at the cemetery. [The Connection]
Photo via vantagehill/Flickr
This weekend made for tempting conditions to break from safer-at-home guidelines in Northern Virginia and throughout the state.
Beach-goers packed Virginia Beach over Memorial Day Weekend while others turned to local parks to grill and gather while social distancing.
In the area, we spotted groups of more than 10 playing on local soccer fields. In some cases at Lake Anne Plaza, folks gathered with not much social distancing at mind.
With Gov. Ralph Northam expected to announce reopening plans for Northern Virginia later today, we’d love to know how you spent Memorial Day weekend in these unprecedented times.
Park-goers will be able to enjoy some features of county parks ahead of Memorial Day weekend.
The Fairfax County Park Authority has started reopening parking lots and parks in its park system beginning today. The process of clearing barricades and opening parking lots for its 427 parks is expected to continue through Friday, May 22. Facilities and restrooms will remain closed.
Indoor and outdoor parks closed roughly one month ago due to the coronavirus pandemic.
“We greatly appreciate the patience and cooperation shown by County residents during this closure,” said Park Authority Executive Director Kirk Kincannon. “We understand this has been a challenge to many who enjoy the park system on a regular basis. And it will be important that everyone follows the safety and physical distancing guidelines recommended by health authorities.”
Park visitors should adhere to social distancing guidelines and groups of more than 10 people should not congregate. Other areas that will remain closed include dog parks, playgrounds, nature centers, visitor centers, volleyball and basketball courts, and athletic fields. Water foundations will also be returned off.
The opening is part of the first phase of FCPA’s reopening plan.
Photo by Marjorie Copson
Six Metro Stations to Close from Memorial Day through September 8 — Fairfax County commuters should plan to travel ahead and avoid gridlock as six Metrorail Blue and Yellow line stations close for major reconstruction and station improvements. County officials are urging commuters to use online tools to travel via transit, ride sharing, and alternate connections. [Fairfax County Government]
Reston Association Board of Directors Meets to Discuss Boats, Docks, and Other Issues — At the board’s meeting last night, a new at-large director was appointed. Board members also heard findings from the lakes, docks and boats working group, among other issues. [Reston Association]
Ravel Dance Studio Presents “Sleeping Beauty and the Street Scene” — Young dancers will perform a variety of dance genres at Reston Community Center’s CenterStage today at 7:30 p.m. Tickets are $25. [Reston Community Center]
Flickr pool photo by vantagehill
As we head into Memorial Day weekend, here’s some information on the latest closures and openings.
Fairfax County government offices, libraries, schools, and courts will be closed on Monday.
Frying Pan Farm Park’s farm will be open from 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. and the indoor arena will be open from 9 a.m. to 9 p.m. The visitor center will be closed.
Reston Community Center Hunters Woods will be open from 9 a.m. to 2 p.m. and the Terry L. Smith Aquatics Center will be open from 6 a.m. to 1:30 p.m. RCC Lake Anne will be closed.
Metrorail and Metro bus will operate on a Sunday schedule. Off-peak fares will be in effect all day and parking will be free at all Metrorail parking facilities. Silver line trains will run every 21 minutes from Wiehle-Reston East to Largo Town Center.
Single tracking will be in effect between Eastern Market and Stadium-Armory to “allow for rail, fastener, cover board and grout pad renewal,” according to the Washington Metropolitan Area Transportation Authority.
The I-66 transfer station and the 1-95 landfill complex will be open. Residents should contact their trash and recycling collector directly for schedule changes due to the holiday.
Reston Association headquarters and the Central Services Facility will also be closed on Memorial Day.
RA pools and tennis courts will open all weekend, so long as the weather permits. Members and non-members must purchase or renew pool and tennis passes in order to access facilities. RA member services will be open Saturday from 9 a.m. to noon for members and non-members to purchase or renew pool and tennis passes. Members with existing pool passes can renew them online.
The Reston Masters Swim Team will host the 31st annual Jim McDonnell Lake Swim on Sunday at Lake Audubon.
The swim has been held every Memorial Day weekend since 1988, according to the team’s website. In 1999, it was named in honor of McDonnell, a founding member of the team who was on the committee that first organized the swim. McDonnell died from lymphoma in 2016.
“Reston Masters is excited to host the 2018 U.S. Masters Swimming (USMS) Middle Distance Open Water National Championship,” said Reston Masters President Brian Evans. “Our 2-mile swim is the kickoff race of the USMS championship series and we are ready to deliver a top-notch, well-organized experience for JMLS competitors.”
Up to 200 swimmers will vie for national champion status. Swimmers take part in a two-mile open water loop around Lake Audubon. This year, two visually impaired swimmers are competing, along with a young woman trying to qualify for the U.S. Special Olympics
A practice swim will take place on Saturday.
Proceeds from this year’s event will be donated to Lymphoma charities. In the past, recipients have included Herndon-Reston Fish, Inc. and the Lymphoma Research Foundation.
More information about the event is available online.
Here’s more about the event from the organizers:
Swimmers of all abilities compete every year. This year’s field includes elite swimmers like 66-year old Shirley Loftus-Charley, a USMS All-American and All-Stars champion and record holder, who is competing in her 31st consecutive JMLS.
Swimmers in the 30-34 year age group will be watching out for distance swimmer and triathlete Shannon Greene. Shannon has placed first in the 1-mile race three times, and has taken first in the 2-mile twice.
“You can expect to see some fast swim times,” said Evans.
One swimmer is hoping to score a qualifying time to compete with Special Olympics USA, and two visually impaired swimmers are also taking on the challenge.
Competitors will swim counter-clockwise around buoys over a 1-mile course. Those swimming the 2-mile race will make the trip twice.
Photo by Ryan Dawson
Fairfax Closures for Memorial Day Weekend — Fairfax County government offices will be closed this weekend through Monday, as will libraries, schools and animal shelters. Public transit, trash pickup, recycling centers and recreation centers will all operate on a normal schedule. [Fairfax County]
Free RECenter Admission for Veterans on Memorial Day — Fairfax County Park Authority will honor former veterans and those in active duty Monday with free access to RECenters and lakefront parks. [Fairfax County]
Appian Now Open for Stock Trade — Trading on NASDAQ has begun for Appian, a Reston-based group that provides cloud-based business process management software solutions. Managed by Morgan Stanley and Goldman Sachs & Co., stock is available for $12 a share and the trade will be open until May 31. Appain has approximately 280 customers and will use the money raised to pay off loans and expansion expenses. [Washington Business Journal]
Scrawl Books Morning Story Time — Scrawl Books in Reston Town Center will have its weekly story time at 10:30 a.m. today. [Reston Town Center]
Metro’s Silver Line Will Get 7000 Series Railcars — Starting around June 25, the Silver Line will have two new 7000 Series trains added on weekdays to provide additional capacity. All previous trains have been the older versions that only feature six railcars, while the 7000 Series has eight. The cars are funded by the Metro Washington Airports Authority. [NBC Washington]
Here are some things to do:
In Herndon, there will be a Memorial Day observance, to include the ceremonial Avenue of Flags, at Chestnut Grove Cemetery at 10 a.m.
Chestnut Grove Cemetery is located at 831 Dranesville Rd.
In Vienna, ViVa Vienna, the annual family friendly carnival with rides, live entertainment and street fair food, continues from 10 a.m. to 6 p.m. See more info on ViVa Vienna’s website.
In Washington, DC, the National Memorial Parade marches at 2 p.m.
We will be saluting our service members today; be back tomorrow. Have a safe and fun holiday.
If you are traveling for the Memorial Day weekend, you may want to stay put Thursday afternoon.
AAA Mid-Atlantic says nearly 966,000 D.C.-area residents will travel at least 50 miles for the holiday. And the heaviest congestion on area roads is predicted to occur Thursday afternoon between 5-6 p.m.
This is the highest travel estimate in the last 11 years, representing a nearly 2 percent increase over the 951,000 residents who traveled at this time last year, according to AAA.
“The great American road trip is back due to cheaper gas prices. We’re seeing this play out for Memorial Day, with a projected 869,600 people in the Washington metro planning to drive to their Memorial Day destinations,” AAA’s John Townsend said in a press release.
Gas prices this year are noticeably lower compared to previous years, with the national average at $2.29 a gallon, 45 cents cheaper than a year ago. Prices in the D.C. area are also down, averaging $2.28 a gallon, 41 cents cheaper.
Along with the roads, air travel is also expected to increase with a predicted number of 69,100 people expected to fly, a 1.7 percent increase from last year’s numbers.
Overall, AAA says more than 38 million Americans will travel this Memorial Day weekend. That is the second-highest Memorial Day travel volume on record and the most since 2005. It’s about 700,000 more people than last year’s numbers.
AAA estimates that Americans have saved $18 billion on gas so far this year compared to the same period in 2015, and prices are at the lowest levels in 11 years.
Photo: Traffic on I-66/ARLnow.com file photo
Here is a list of what is open and closed today.
Nearby in Vienna, the annual ViVa Vienna fair continues with rides, carnival games, live music and other family fun. There will be a Memorial Day tribute at 1 p.m.
Reston Now will be back on Tuesday.
If you are planning to participate, not that The Reston Chorale is also collecting items for care packages to send to troops deployed overseas.
Attendees are encouraged to bring donations of items such as:
Single-serve, sealed powdered drink mixes and snack packs (flip-top canned fruit, jerky, tuna pouches, sunflower seeds, cookies, crackers, gum, individually wrapped hard candy, etc.)
Non-aerosol, unscented toiletries (lip balm, lotion, antibacterial wipes, baby wipes, toothbrushes, toothpaste,deodorant, sunscreen, etc.);
Paperback books and magazines (mysteries, action, drama, science fiction books and sports, news, entertainment, travel or nature magazines);
Comfort items (hand-held fans and misters with non-lithium batteries, insect-repellent wipes, bandannas, etc.),
Hand-held games and non-lithium batteries, puzzle books, playing cards, Nerf balls, water guns, Frisbees, Yo-yos.
For more information, visit www.restonchorale.org or call 703.834.0079.