Reston’s African American History Explored — “Rev. LaVerne Gill’s book profiles individuals who went through the struggles of early Reston and still love it and believe in it.” [The Connection]
Seven Black Athletes Making History at the 2018 PyeongChang Winter Olympics — Originally from Ghana, Reston-based Maame Biney “is the first black woman to make the Olympic speedskating team and the second-ever African-born athlete to represent the U.S. in the Winter Olympics.” [NBC News]
Metrorail is No Longer the Second-Busiest Rapid Transit System in the Country — “Metrorail’s ridership is clearly lower than that of legacy rapid transit systems, due to basic decisions made during the design of the system.” [Greater Greater Washington]
Search for Armed Man Who Robbed Gas Station Ongoing — The Fairfax County Police Department continues to seek the public’s help to identify a masked man who police believe robbed a gas station on 11410 North Shore Drive last month.
Photo by Fatimah Waseem
Reston Community Leader, Civil Rights Advocate Remembered — “The letters and cards that Rev. Frederick Lowry’s family received after his death kept circling back to the same sentiments: how kind he was, how much he cared, his sense of humor,” writes Angela Woolsey. Lowry died due to complications from Alzheimer’s disease on Dec. 25. He was well-known for his 14-year tenure as director of the Community Ministry of Fairfax. [Fairfax County Times]
Ten Things You Should Know about Olympic Speedskater Maame Biney — The Reston native is headed to the Olympics. The 17-year-old speedskater is the first black woman to land on a spot on the U.S. Olympic speedskating team. [NBC4]
County Hosts Community Meeting on Plans to Convert Empty Office Buildings into Other Uses — The county is holding a meeting today at 6 p.m. in the Fairfax County Government Center (12000 Government Center Parkway) to discuss a comprehensive plan amendment that would allow empty office buildings to be converted for other uses. An attempt to carve a special exemption for Reston when the first phase of the amendment was introduced failed last year. [Fairfax County Government]
Build a Birdhouse Tomorrow at Walker Nature Center — Children between the ages of 7 and 12 can get their hands busy tomorrow from 11 a.m. to noon at the center. Attendees will practice basic woodworking skills by constructing a birdhouse. Tickets are $7 for Reston members and $9 for all others. [Reston Association]
Photo by Fatimah Waseem
A player from Vienna who played in Reston is among the roster for Team USA’s Olympic hockey team, which will vie for gold in the 2018 PyeongChang Olympics.
Garrett Roe, a 29-year-old former member of the Reston Raiders, a local hockey club, was selected for the roster, which was unveiled on New Year’s Day. He plays as a forward for EV Zug in Switzerland. He played in seven seasons of professional hockey from the American Hockey League.
According to the Washington Post, Roe’s father, Larry, is the founder of the Club. In an interview with the Post, he said his son always had an “extra little sense for the game.”
“Some players have a sense for the game. Some players are talented. Some players have both, and that’s Garrett,” he said.
Last year, the National Hockey League barred its players from playing in the games, which conflict with the league’s season schedule. The change opened up opportunities for players in less professional leagues to participate in the games.
Congratulations to former @RestonRaiders player Garrett Roe on being named to the U.S. Olympics Men’s National Team!! https://t.co/R7PCsPsPDP
— Reston Raiders (@RestonRaiders) January 1, 2018
Over the weekend, Maame Biney, a Reston native, became the first black woman to qualify for the U.S. Olympic speedskating team.
The 17-year-old native of Ghana won to two short track trials in Kearns, Utah on Saturday. According to the Associated Press, Biney set a “blistering pace” by taking an early lead.
Biney will be the youngest member of Team USA’s women speedskating team. She is the second black speedskater on a U.S. Olympic team.
Shani Davis, 35, was the first black athlete to win an individual gold medal at the Winter Olympics. He was 19 when he qualified for a short track team in 2002.
Biney immigrated to the United States from Ghana when she was five years old. The Washington Post reports she grew up around Reston’s Dominion Speedskating Club, where she first began practicing to learn the sport.
Seventeen-year-old speedskater Maame Biney just punched her ticket to the 2018 Olympics in South Korea. pic.twitter.com/VlrLuQFrMW
— Chris Kamrani (@chriskamrani) December 16, 2017
The 2018 Winter Games will take place in February in Pyeongchang, South Korea.
Photo via Associated Press
ABC7 Features Reston Athlete — Rose Pleskow, a Reston resident born with intellectual disabilities and epilepsy, was featured on the TV channel. She won the bronze medal in the 1500 meters race in the Special Olympic World Games in 2011. Pleskow now competes internationally in open water swimming. [ABC7]
Rich Kleinfeldt and Yuniko Rogers to Perform at CenterStage Today — The artists will perform at CenterStage (2310 Colts Neck Road) from 2:15 – 3:30 p.m. as part of a collaboration between will join us for our free Meet the Artists Series at the CenterStage tomorrow, 11/9, from 2:15 – 3:30 p.m. [Reston Community Center]
South Lakes High School to Perform ‘Almost Maine’ — Students will perform John Cariani’s classic romantic comedy on Nov. 16 and 17 at 7 p.m. and on Nov. 18 at 2 p.m and 7 p.m. Tickets are $10 for adults and $8 for students. [South Lakes Theatre Arts]
Greater Reston Arts Center Selects Volunteer of the Year — The arts center selected Nicola Shelley as the volunteer of the year. The award recognizes a volunteer that commits personal time and resources to support the center’s programs. Nicola is the lead art coordinator at Buzz Aldrin Elementary School. [Greater Reston Arts Center]
Matthew Centrowitz Jr., whose accomplishments as a runner include a gold medal in the 1,500 meters at the 2016 Olympic Games, will visit Reston Town Center next week for an event with Potomac River Running.
Centrowitz and his father, fellow Olympian Matthew Centrowitz Sr., will be at the Reston Town Center pavilion Tuesday, Sept. 5, at 6:30 p.m. to share their stories and sign copies of the elder’s new book, “Like Father, Like Son: My Story on Running, Coaching and Parenting.”
Centrowitz Sr. was a member of the U.S. Olympic Team in 1976 and 1980, while he son has done so in 2012 and 2016. The gold medal won by Centrowitz Jr. in Rio de Janeiro last year marked the first time an American had accomplished that feat in the 1,500 meters since 1908.
At Reston Town Center next week, the Centrowitzes will share their Olympic experiences and offer running advice. The event is free, but space is limited. Those who wish to attend should visit www.prraces.com to register.
According to an event schedule released by Potomac River Running:
6:30 p.m: Take your seats in the RTC Pavilion
7 p.m.: The Centrowitz Duo present a comedic, yet informative clinic and share adventures from their Olympic experiences
8 p.m.: See the Gold Medal in person and get your booked signed or photos taken with the legendary father and son team
As the Washington 2024 group gets organized to make its bid for the 2024 Summer Olympics, Fairfax County may be a viable location for many Olympic venues, training centers and athlete and press housing.
The nonprofit Washington 2024 unveiled a new website and a VIP-heavy board of directors earlier this month as it seeks to be the United States Olympic Committee’s American entry for the games. Other cities in the running for 2024 are Boston, San Francisco and Los Angeles.
The USOC will choose its nominee for consideration by the International Olympic Committee in 2017. The last Summer Games in the United States were in Atlanta in 1996. The Winter Games were held in Salt Lake City in 2002.
Fairfax County Supervisor Chair Sharon Bulova says that Olympic events in the region “could be a galvanizing event,” but there have been no formal talks with county officials.
“Our board has not passed a resolution [to get involved], but if someone made a motion, it would probably pass easily,” she said. “The idea is great.”
Fairfax County will get an Olympic-style test next summer, when the 2015 World Police and Fire Games will take place here. More than 12,000 law enforcement athletes, as well as families and spectators, are expected here, says Fairfax 2015 President and CEO Bill Knight. Athletes will compete in 61 sports at 53 Fairfax venues.
Russ Ramsey, Chair and CEO of Washington 2024, is on the Honorary Board of Fairfax 2015.
Knight points out that the police games actually have more athletes and more events than the Summer Olympics. One big difference between the two is the police and fire games use existing infrastructure, while Olympics tend to build new facilities, he said.
George Mason University’s Patriot Center, as well as other campus facilities, will host Fairfax 2015 events.
“George Mason has some beautiful facilities,” said Knight, who managed the events that took place at University of Georgia in Athens as part of the Atlanta ’96.
“For an event like this, it is not just about competition venues, it is training venues and spectators too,” said Knight. “It takes the entire region to support the Games.”
Meanwhile, Washington 2024 has had meetings with Loudoun officials about holding equestrian events at Morven Park in Leesburg, the Washington Business Journal reported this week. The committee has also looked at potential rowing and aquatics sites in Loudoun.
Bulova adds that Metro’s Silver Line would be an added bonus for Washington 2024’s bid. The rail line is expected to be completed by 2018, finally connecting Washington Dulles Airport with Washington, D.C. and the rest of the region.
“Visitors [by 2024] will be directly served by three airports — Dulles, Reagan National and BWI,” said Bulova. “The entire region would benefit.”
Photo: George Mason’s Patriot Center/File photo