Reston Olympian to Race Today — “Fans of Team USA will need to set their alarms early on Friday if they hope to catch Reston short track speedskater Maame Biney’s next race in the 2022 Olympic Winter Games in Beijing. Biney will be competing at 6:04 a.m. (EST) on Friday in the second quarterfinal round of the Short Track Women’s 1000m.” [Patch]
Kids’ Trout Fishing Derby Returns — The Town of Herndon will restart the 17th annual kids’ trout fishing derby on March 19. Pre-registration is open through March 18. The event is open for children between the ages of 2 and 15. [Town of Herndon]
Changes Underway at Reston Tennis Courts — Two courts at Autumnwood in Reston are closed due to cracks caused by low temperatures. Reston Association is working with a contractor to repair the cracks. It’s unclear when the courts will reopen. [RA]
Photo via vantagehill/Flickr
Metro Looks for Bus Drivers — Metro is offering up to $2,500 in bonuses as it begins a campaign to hire more bus drivers. The agency is looking to hire nearly 70 bus drivers. [Washington Metropolitan Area Transit Authority]
South Lakes Graduate Prepares for Winter Olympics — Maame Biney, a graduate of South Lakes High School and speed skater, is preparing for her second Olympics this month. She completed in 2018’s Winter Olympics in South Korea after winning the U.S. women’s championship in the 500-meter race. [Fairfax County Public Schools]
A Look at Local Jobs — The Fairfax County Economic Development Authority has worked with 146 businesses and added nearly 9,000 jobs to the local economy. At the top of the list is Peraton in Herndon, which added 1,200 jobs. [Fairfax County EDA]
Photo via vantagehill/Flickr
Business Burglarized in Herndon — Local police are looking for a man who may have robbed a business on the 700 block of Elden Street on Jan. 18. Police recently released a video of the subject. [Herndon Police Department]
Bingo Activity Results in Backlash — A high school lesson plan that included an activity called Privilege Bingo has resulted in backlash against the Fairfax County Public Schools system. The activity marked several demographics as privileged. [Local DVM]
Reston Athlete Competes for Olympic Gold — Maame Biney is gearing up for this year’s Olympics in Beijing. The Restonian is the first black woman to compete on a U.S. short track speed skating team. [Northern Virginia Magazine]
Photo by Terry Barans
Reston Teen Aims for Beijing Winter Olympics — Ilia Malinin, a Reston-based teen, is aiming to compete at the Winter Olympics this year. He is described as one of the best junior skaters in the world. [Washington City Paper]
7-Eleven on Parcher Avenue Robbed — A man robbed the 7-11 on Parcher Avenue on Dec. 11 shortly before 7 p.m. Police believe the robbery happened at gunpoint. No injuries were reported. [Fairfax County Police Department]
Feedback Sought on Search for New CEO — Reston Association recently hired Baker Tilly to conduct a nationwide search for a new CEO, a position that has been vacant for many months. The association also launched a survey to gauge feedback from members on what qualities they want on RA’s new leader. [RA]
A Reminder to Social Distance — County officials are reminding residents to adhere to social distancing as much as possible as the winter surge of COVID-19 cases continues. [Fairfax County Government]
Schools Seek Bus Drivers –– The Fairfax County Public Schools system is seeing bus drivers. A job fair is planned for Friday, Jan. 14 from 10 a..m. to 3 p.m. at the Lorton Transportation Center. [Fairfax Schools]
Photo by Marjorie Copson
Maame Biney, the 21-year-old Restonian who became the first Black woman to land a spot on a U.S. Olympic speedskating team, is bringing her local Northern Virginia flair along with her on her Olympic journey.
For the last year and a half, she’s been training in Utah, where she earned a spot this month to compete in the upcoming 2022 Olympics. But despite not being face-to-face with people back in Fairfax County, she told Reston Now that she still has pieces of home with her, such as when grade school teachers Mrs. Bentley and Damon reach out to her.
“That’s super nice to know they’re out there supporting me and wanting the best for me beyond the role of a student, but as a skater and human being,” Biney said in an email.
Biney’s record-breaking history includes competing in the 2018 Olympics, and after three days of competition ending Dec. 19 at U.S. qualifiers in Utah, she secured her return to the Games next year in China.
She and four other female skaters, including Kristen Santos, made the short track team. Biney is the only returning Olympian on the squad.
“What was going through my head during qualifiers, was just to chill,” she wrote.
The athletes made the team based on their overall performance in six races (two 1,500-meter races, two 1,000-meter races and two 500-meter races).
Biney’s iconic smile came out as she skated off the rink following her win in the 500-meter final, quickly taking the lead from a third position on the starting line.
“I was mainly focused on my breathing and trying to be calm throughout the very big storm,” she said by email. “I really wanted to make my second Olympic team, but I can’t be too hard on myself. Then during the 500 I proved to myself I still got it, and I’m still the 500 queen!”
Overcome with emotion and talking amid tears, she talked about her family, friends and God
“This is for them,” she told NBC Sports while eventually breaking out smiles again.
Biney moved to the U.S. from Ghana at age 5 and began speed skating at the age of six.
While still a high school student at South Lakes, she made her Olympic debut in South Korea at age 18.
In high school, she also won bronze and gold medals at the world junior championships in 2017 and 2018 and defended her title as a University of Utah student in 2019 — when she also set a junior world record.
Reston Speedskater Qualifies for Olympics — Short track speedster Maame Biney, a Reston resident, has earned a space on Team USA. She placed first in the 1,000-meter race and second in the 500 during U.S. Olympic Trials over the weekend. [Reston Patch]
Demand for Office Space Near Metro Up — The county is seeing an increase in demand for new office spaces near Metro stations, but older suburban properties appear to be falling behind. [Bisnow]
Metro to Buy Electric Buses — Metro will provide up to 10 new battery-powered buses as part of its transition to a zero-emission fleet. The Board of Directors has aimed to meet this goal by 2045. A Request for Proposals has been issued. [Metro]
School Security Officer Charged for Assaulting Student — A school resource officer has been charged with assaulting a student at Stone Middle School in Centreville. According to the Fairfax County Police Department, Lamar Hardy, 26, of Centreville, was arrested and charged with misdemeanor assault. [FCPD]
Photo via vantagehill/Flickr
Masks Now Required in County Facilities — “Beginning Monday, Aug. 9, all employees and visitors — regardless of vaccination status — will be required to wear a mask while inside all Fairfax County facilities to help stop the spread of COVID-19…The rise in COVID-19 cases has resulted in the Fairfax Health District moving from moderate to substantial community transmission. This is due to the on-going spread of the highly contagious Delta variant of the COVID-19 virus.” [Fairfax County Health Department]
Former FCPS Student Gets Olympic Gold — The U.S. finished first in the men’s 4×400 meter relay at the 2020 Tokyo Olympics on Saturday (Aug. 7), besting the Netherlands and Botswana. Former South County High School student Trevor Stewart helped Team USA reach the finals by leading the qualifying round on Friday (Aug. 6). He was not in the final heat but will still bring home a gold medal. [Olympics]
General Assembly Reaches Deal on COVID-19 Relief Spending — Virginia’s Senate and House will vote today (Monday) on a deal that negotiators reached late Friday for how to spend $4.3 billion in American Rescue Plan funds. Changes from Gov. Ralph Northam’s original plan include the addition of one-time bonuses to sheriff’s deputies, a boost to Medicaid rates for workers who serve individuals with disabilities, and a requirement that the Department of Motor Vehicles reopen for walk-in services that had been halted during the pandemic. [The Washington Post]
NoVA Science Center Eyes 2022 Groundbreaking — The Fairfax-based Children’s Science Center hopes to break ground next year on its long-planned Northern Virginia Science Center in Loudoun County. The project has expanded from its original design, necessitating a relocation to a site that will accommodate an “expansion wing with a dome theater for large-format films and potentially even a planetarium contemplated for a future phase.” [Washington Business Journal]
Photo via vantagehill/Flickr
Updated at 4:20 p.m. on 8/8/2021 — Trevor Stewart will bring home a gold medal after the U.S. won the final men’s 4×400-meter relay on Saturday (Aug. 7), beating the Netherlands, which won silver, and Botswana, which got the bronze medal in the event.
Earlier: Lead-off runner Trevor Stewart helped his team secure the top qualifying spot in the 4×400 meter relay today (Friday) at the 2020 Tokyo Olympics, which could mean another medal for him in his first Games.
A former South County High School student, Stewart ran 44.79 seconds for Team USA’s combined time of 2:57.77, the fastest time posted for the Olympic Games in Tokyo not only for the Americans in their qualifying heat, but also against a second qualifying heat of eight other teams.
The event’s final race will take place at 8:50 a.m. EDT tomorrow (Saturday).
The Lorton native’s time was slightly faster than his other lead-off leg for the 4×400 meter mixed relay, where Team USA won a bronze medal last Saturday (July 31). This year marked the first time that the Olympics featured the event, where men and women compete together.
“When you believe in yourself, anything can be accomplished,” the 24-year-old said in an Instagram post published on Aug. 1 after the race.
In the mixed relay race, Stewart and teammates Kendall Ellis, Kaylin Whitney, and Vernon Norwood finished with a collective time of 3:10.22. They replaced another American team that was initially disqualified. The U.S. was allowed to continue after the decision was appealed and overturned.
During the men’s qualifying race, which aired live this morning due to Tokyo’s 13-hour time difference, Stewart handed off the baton to former college teammate Randolph Ross, but the two had a slight hiccup in which Ross reached for the baton twice.
Stewart, who has been asthmatic since childhood, helped his North Carolina Agricultural and Technical State University team win NCAA championship titles earlier this year, running the 4×400 meter race in 44.67 seconds and 44.17 seconds indoors and outdoors, respectively. He finished his college career with the A&T Aggies anchoring those races.
That team also included Ross, who will be a sophomore at A&T when classes begin Aug. 18.
Ross was the only teammate continuing with Stewart on the U.S. men’s 4×400 Olympic team as their other teammates moved forward with their home countries: Akeem Sirleaf represented Liberia and Daniel Stokes represented Mexico.
Stewart isn’t the only former FCPS student competing in this year’s Olympics. Other local athletes include swimmer Andrew Seliskar, discus thrower Chioma “CiCi” Onyekwere, shooter Lucas Kozeniesky, and West Potomac High School graduate Keyshawn Davis, who will be in contention for the boxing gold medal on Sunday (Aug. 8).
Photo courtesy USATF
Several Olympians competing on the world stage in Tokyo this summer can trace parts of their athletic journeys back to Fairfax County.
Swimmer Andrew Seliskar, discus thrower Chioma “CiCi” Onyekwere, and runner Trevor Stewart all qualified for the 2020 Olympics, which will take place from July 21 to Aug. 8.
The games were delayed for a year due to the COVID-19 pandemic, and they will be held without spectators after Japan announced on Friday (July 9) that it would enter a fourth state of emergency starting today (Monday) due to rising cases of the virus.
Seliskar, who graduated from Thomas Jefferson High School for Science and Technology in 2015, is taking on his first Olympics after two previous qualifying attempts at ages 19 and 15, including one where he “narrowly missed” a semi-final spot.
As a student, he broke a national high school record for the 100-yard butterfly in 2014 near Richmond with 53.24 seconds, and he won four national titles swimming at the University of California in Berkeley before becoming a professional swimmer.
The 24-year-old McLean native told Fairfax County Public Schools that he relishes his competitions against high school rivals.
“Those were great memories, and for my swimming career, those are some of the best ones,” he said.
Heats for the men’s 4 x 200 meter freestyle relay are scheduled for 6-8:30 a.m. EDT on July 27, and the final will air from 9:30 p.m. EDT on July 27 to 12:05 a.m. EDT on July 28.
Robinson Secondary School graduate Onyekwere will represent Nigeria at the Olympics, since she is a dual citizen of that country and the U.S.
“I feel like Nigeria made me the person I am today, so it’s so nice to give back in some kind of way and represent them,” she told FCPS.
The Michigan-born former University of Maryland athlete currently holds Nigeria’s discus throw record of 63.3 meters, which she set in April in Chula Vista, California, as part of the Nigerian Olympic Trials.
The 27-year-old engineer works for Ford and relocated back to Fairfax County last fall to be with family amid the pandemic, FCPS noted.
The qualifying round for the women’s discus throw is 8:30 p.m. EDT July 30, and the final is 7 a.m. EDT Aug. 2.
Stewart, who graduated from South County High School in 2016, will run the 4×400-meter relay race for Team USA.
His teammates include a fellow student at North Carolina A&T State University. The pair were part of a 4×400 relay team that won national titles this year for the indoor and outdoor track seasons, capping his senior year.
The 24-year-old switched from karate to track and field when he was in ninth grade. To prepare for the upcoming games, he has turned to prayer and meditation, according to FCPS.
“I worked hard for this,” he told FCPS. “There’s always room for improvement, but I’ve made it right now. I’ve made it right here.”
Heats for the men’s 4×400 meter relay are slated for 7:25 a.m. EDT Aug. 6 and 8:50 a.m. EDT Aug. 7 for the final.
Recognition for Frank de la Fe — The Fairfax County Board of Supervisors honored the Restonian for his service on the county’s planning commission for 16 years. [The Connection]
Mom defends son who faces murder charges — The 17-year-old Lorton teenager who has been charged with the murders of Scott Fricker, 48, and his wife Buckley Kuhn-Fricker, 43, has been called an alt-right killer. But his mother told says her son has struggled with mental health issues for years. [The Washington Post]
A response to school shootings and gun violence — South Lakes High School seniors held a voter registration drive in their U.S. history class. [The Connection]
Walk for the Walker Nature Center — The 15th annual walk to benefit the center, which offers environmental education, is set for April 14. Registration is open online. [Walker Nature Center]
USA Today highlights local Olympian — March is Girls Sports Month, so the news outlet featured Reston’s own Maame Biney, an Olympic short track speed skater. [USA Today]
Photo by Ruth Sievers
Windstorm cleanup continues — The storm left a path of tree limbs, uprooted trees and downed wires. Reston Association staff it could take up at least a month to clean up. [Reston Association]
Some schools still don’t have power — Students in Reston are back in session, but some Fairfax County Public Schools are closed today. Reston residents didn’t have power for more than two days near Lake Newport Road. [Reston Patch]
Reston Olympian makes history — Maame Biney wrapped up her junior career by becoming the first woman in the country to earn an overall medal in 21 years at the Word Junior Short Track Championships yesterday. [Team USA]
Support Herndon Track & Field with a salad — The team is hosting a fundraiser today from 6-10 p.m. at Cava (1815 Fountain Drive). Mention this fundraiser and get the Herndon Hornets some extra cash. [Herndon Track and Field]
Photo by Doug Errett
Body Cameras Go Live This Week— Police officers in the Reston police district will be equipped with body cameras beginning this week. During the six-month pilot program, cameras will record anytime officers respond to a scene and during routine traffic stops. [NBC 4]
Maame Biney Looks Forward to Beijing 2022 — Over the weekend, Biney finished last in the 1,500-meter short-track speedskating heat. She also finished fourth in the quarterfinals for the 500-meter race. The 18-year-old made history by becoming the first black woman to make the U.S. Olympic speedskating team. [The Washington Post]
Meet Reston Association Board Candidates — There are four open seats on RA’s board of directors. E-meet the 13 candidates who are running by watching their online videos. [RA]
Hiccups on the Metro Line This Morning — Metro trains did not share a track on the Blue and Silver lines this morning. Backups were caused by a report of smoke. [The Washington Post]
Photo by Twitter user @MrErrett
Maame Biney, a Reston teen whose infectious spirit, electric smile and notable speed has grabbed national attention, did not advance in the 500-meter quarterfinal at the Winter Olympics.
At the games earlier this morning, Biney, 18, began with a slow start and was unable to to recover.
But the speedskater’s time to shine in PyeongChang isn’t over. She has another chance to compete in the 1,500-meter race on Saturday at 5 a.m.
Biney’s journey to the United States began when she left her mother in Ghana to join her father. NBC News mapped her story in a video linked below.
She is the first black woman to qualify for the U.S. Olympic speedskating team.
Photo via NBC Nightly
Firing up some love for Reston Olympian Maame Biney – Fire Station 39 in North Point is showing Biney, a short-track speed skater, some love on their entrance sign. She advanced to the 500-meter Olympics quarterfinal over the weekend. [Fairfax County Fire Department]
Class on Insight Meditation and Mindfulness Practices Today — Steady your mind with this guided class on insight meditation, an art that aims to cultivate natural wisdom and compassion. The class will take place atUnitarian Universalist Church in Reston (1625 Wiehle Avenue) from 7:30-8:45 p.m. Newcomers are welcome and registration is free.
If you’re feeling adventurous – Reston’s Tropical Smoothie Cafe is offering a “red hot love” smoothie in celebration of Valentine’s Day through Wednesday. We’re told it’s a mix of green apple, white chocolate and cinnamon candies. [Tropical Smoothie Cafe]
“Naturally Yours Valentines” Today at Walker Nature Center — Celebrate Valentine’s Day by making a card, enjoying tasty treats and taking home a special gift made from natural materials. The program, which runs from 10-11 a.m., is for toddlers between 18 and 35 months . Can’t make it today? Don’t worry. There’s another session tomorrow: same time, same place. [Reston Association]
Reston Olympian Advances in Speedskating Round — “Biney advanced to the quarterfinal of the 500m despite late pressure from Kim A-Lang. Biney finished with a time of 43.665 seconds, good for second in her heat.” [NBC 4]
County Eyes Other Uses for Office Buildings — “Reston Association’s Land Use Planner, Kelsey Steffen, explains how Fairfax County is forming a policy amendment that would allow for vacant or underutilized office buildings to be converted for other uses, such as retail and residential.” [Reston Today]