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Santa Bar Crawl and More This Weekend in Reston

In addition to the Holiday events we covered earlier, there’s plenty to do around Reston this weekend. This weekend should be especially busy for the more artistically inclined readers, with dancing, music, and photography events tomorrow and Sunday.

Tomorrow (Dec. 8)

Cookies with Santa (9 a.m.-12 p.m.) — Hot chocolate and cookies will be available for children and adults at an arts and crafts event hosted by the Reston Association at Lake House (11450 Baron Cameron Ave). The program is geared towards children ages 2-12. Admission is $15 for Reston Association members of $20 for non-members.

Irish Dance (12-1 p.m.) — The Foley Academy of Irish Dance will offer a dance performance and lesson at the Reston Regional Library (11925 Bowman Towne Dr).

Singer Songwriter Crys Matthews (6:30-9:30) — The alternative rock singer-songwriter will be performing at the Lake Anne Coffee House & Wine Bar (1612 Washington Plaza) tomorrow night. Matthew is also scheduled to perform in January at a three-day event for Reston’s Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. Birthday Celebration.

National Parks Photography Exhibit Reception (7-9 p.m.) — Artspace Herndon (750 Center St) will host a reception for Jim Schlett’s gallery of national park photography. Most of the work was photographed during ling walked through the parks around dawn or dusk. The exhibit will run until Jan. 5.

2018 Reston Santa Bar Crawl (8 p.m.-1 a.m.) — The rules for a Santa Bar Crawl are simple: wear a Santa suit, or some other holiday costume, and hit up a series of Santa-friendly bars across Reston. A full list of participating bars is available at the event page.

Sunday (Dec. 9)

Christmas at the Farm — The Frying Pan Farm Park (2739 West Ox Rd) will offer cookie decorating, Sant-driven dractor rides, and more for $10 per person. Sessions at the farm are held throughout the day. Children must be accompanied by an adult.

Sunday Afternoon Dance (2:30-4:30 p.m.) — The Reston Community Center (2310 Colts Neck Rd) is hosting a dance for all skill levels, with music ranging from waltz and swing to modern dance selections. Partners are not required. The cost is $5 for Reston residents or $10 for non-Restonians. The event is followed by a County Western Dance from 5:30-8 p.m.

Photo via Facebook

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Friday Morning Notes

County remains among the richest — the U.S. Census Bureau estimates that Fairfax County ranks second as the richest county from 2013 to 2017, following Loudoun County. [U.S. Census Bureau]

It’s snow joke — With snow predictions looming, the Virginia Department of Transportation wants residents to stay safe by looking over its 2018-2019 “snow facts.” [VDOT]

Fine arts photography collection — The “La Lumiere DuBois VII” exhibit by Michael DuBois, who highlights his love of nature, opens today at the Reston Community Center Hunters Woods. The exhibit is open until  Jan. 6. [Reston Community Center]

“She Kills Monsters: Young Adventurers Edition” — Watch students from the Herndon High School perform a contemporary dramatic comedy tonight at 7 p.m. Parental guidance is recommended. [Herndon High School Theatre]

Photo by Susan Berger

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New Steel Sculpture in Reston Town Center Delayed Until Spring

The Greater Reston Arts Center has pushed back the completion of a new 50-foot steel sculpture in Reston Town Center from this fall to spring 2019. 

Reston Now previously reported the installation and an opening ceremony were expected in August.

Now, the sculpture’s anticipated unveiling is set for spring after the project faced construction delays, Lily Siegel, executive director and curator of the Greater Reston Arts Center (GRACE), told Reston Now.

“As we embarked on [the project], things have shifted and got a little bit delayed,” she said.

Titled “Buoyant Force,” the sculpture by artist Sue Wrbican is inspired by the work of Kay Sage, an American surrealist who was known for her paintings of scaffolded structure and furled fabric in barren landscapes. GRACE previously featured Wrbican’s work last fall.

Currently, the sculpture is getting fabricated by two fabricators. The main 50-foot piece is getting welded together at one fabricator’s shop in Rockville Md.

Siegel said that the GRACE team has dropped in several times on the fabrication, describing the tall piece as reminiscent of scaffolding or the inside of a skyscraper. Even though the 50-foot piece is lying on the ground, “it’s very impressive,” she said. “The impact is pretty powerful.”

A second fabricator is making other steel structures that will get attached to the sculpture. Both sourced preexisting, pre-fabricated materials at Wrbican’s request. 

While the main work on the pieces is “pretty much done,” technical details still need finishing before installation. Once the pieces are on site, the installation will require a crane and boom lift, she said.

“Buoyant Force” marks Seigel’s first public sculpture — an undertaking that has taught her quite a bit throughout the process. For starters, the project initially planned to have one fabricator, before she decided the work required two people, she said.

“It’s taking a whole team of professionals to get this done,” Seigel said That team includes architects, inspectors, a concrete team, engineers, movers and — of course — the artist.

Seigel also took a new approach to fund the sculpture. For the first time, GRACE started a crowdfunding campaign to cover the costs. Locals can donate online.

So far, the campaign raised about $50,000 — nearly half of the required funds — in roughly five months, she said. The Reston Town Center Association, Reston Community Center, ArtsFairfax and Public Art Reston are some of the places that have donated.

Seigel said the “slow” fundraising efforts are not causing the delay.

Additionally, the architect, engineer, concrete company and transportation company are providing pro bono work — a donation of its own kind, she said.

Siegel said a community celebration to mark the grand opening will happen.

After that, she plans to host programming, including dance, poetry and education, around the sculpture, which is expected to be on view for five years. “We’re looking for different ways to bring the community back around the sculpture” with different perspectives, she said. “We are incredibly excited about this project.”

Images via Greater Reston Arts Center 

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Reston Community Center Adds Herndon Singer to Martin Luther King Jr. Show Line-up

Herndon resident Crys Matthews will perform her songs at the 34th annual Reston Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. Birthday Celebration.

The Reston Community Center recently added the singer-songwriter to its lineup of artists for the three-day event, which takes place from Jan. 19 to Jan. 21.

Matthews has gained national acclaim for her music, which blends Americana, folk, jazz, blues, bluegrass and funk. In 2017, she was the grand-prize winner in the NewSong Music Competition and won the People’s Music Network’s Social Justice Songs contest at the Northeast Regional Folk Alliance.

“Crys Matthews is an important voice of her generation and will be an excellent addition to our weekend lineup,” Paul Douglas Michnewicz, the arts and events director for Reston Community Center, said in a statement. “Her perspective reminds us that our similarities are far more important than our differences.”

Matthews is scheduled to perform at 2 p.m. on Jan. 20 at CenterStage. Tickets cost $15 for Reston residents.

She also plans to conduct a workshop for students at Langston Hughes Middle School and South Lakes High School as an artist-in-residence in Reston.

Photo via Fairfax County

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Wednesday Morning Notes

Opening night for “The Nutcracker” — The Conservatory Ballet begins performances tonight of the holiday classic at 7 p.m. at CenterStage. [Reston Community Center]

Deadline pushed for Silver Line project contractors — The Washington Metropolitan Area Transit Authority extended the deadline yesterday for proposals to accommodate the vendors interested in operating the extension of the Metrorail Silver Line to March 18. [WMATA]

Reston-based technology developer is raking in the money —  OpenLegacy has raised $30 million in funding. Silverhorn Investment Advisors led the round. [OpenLegacy]

Snow possible this weekend — Get your snow boots out. Forecasters say a chance of wintery storms could hit Reston over the weekend. [Reston Patch]

Photo via Marjorie Copson

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Friday Morning Notes

Overcome writer’s block before NaNoWriMo ends — Join fellow locals from 10 a.m. to 6 p.m. at the Reston Regional Library to finish up the National Novel Writing Month challenge of writing a 50,000-word novel before midnight tonight. [Fairfax County]

Take a dip in the pool — Summer is long gone, but pool time isn’t. “The Family Splash” from 7 p.m. to 9 p.m. at the Reston Community Center is $13 for residents. [Reston Community Center]

W&OD Trail project continues — A major 1.2-mile stretch of the trail’s bike path in Falls Church will be turned into a dual path — one for bikes and the other for pedestrians. The Northern Virginia Transportation Authority is providing $3.2 million for the project. The trail also faces planned construction over Wiehle Avenue. [Falls-Church News Press]

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Thursday Morning Notes

“O Christmas tree, o Christmas tree” — If you’re looking for a place to get a tree this holiday season, this roundup lists nearby Christmas tree farms. [Reston Patch]

Dollars and Sense — The free monthly group at Reston Regional Library focuses on business leaders and markets. Tonight’s 7 p.m. discussion will be about Mel Lindauer ‘s book “The Bogleheads’: Guide to Investing.” [Fairfax County]

Tackling Reston’s housing inclusiveness — Richard Rothstein, author of “Color of Law: The Forgotten History of How our Government Segregated America,” will lead a discussion on how housing policy impacts equitability and inclusiveness in Northern Virginia communities. An interactive panel discussion with local community experts will follow. The event takes place tonight at the Reston Community Center at 5 p.m. [Reston Community Center]

Investigating how the media impacts victims of crime — Karen Bune, a criminology professor at George Mason University, will dive into the news media’s role related to crime victims and ways to disseminate news without negatively impacting victims, survivors, confidentiality and ongoing investigations. The event is at 7 p.m. at the Herndon Fortnightly Library. [Fairfax County]

Photo via Ray Copson

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Reston Tech Consulting Firm Collects 500 Items for Food Drive

(Editor’s note: This story was updated Monday at 2 p.m. to clarify where the collected food items went.)

Giving Tuesday is right around the corner, and one Reston-based company got a head start.

The Goal, a technology-based consulting firm, collected more than 500 food items in its annual food drive, the company posted today (Nov. 26) on social media.

The food will go to the Reston Community Center’s Thanksgiving Food Drive to benefit Cornerstones, a local nonprofit organization. The items gathered by the employees, known as “Goalies,” include cans of yams, potatoes and Campbell soup.

Founded in 2002, The Goal is headquartered in Reston at 11921 Freedom Drive, Suite 920. The company’s services include software development, cybersecurity and data solutions.

The donation is meant to help people living in poverty, the company tweeted said.

Photo via The Goal/Instagram

This story has been updated.

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Wednesday Morning Notes

Wegmans cements deal in Reston Crescent project — The supermarket chain will set up shop by Reston Parkway. [Washington Business Journal]

Try out American mahjong — Drop in to try out the game using tiles instead of cards for free at the Reston Community Center. [Reston Community Center]

“Green is the Secret Color to Make Gold” — There are only a few days left to see the photography exhibition by Caitlin Teal Price. [Greater Reston Arts Center]

Keep an eye on the Metrorail’s schedule — Riders can expect reduced hours and track work tomorrow and over the weekend. [WTOP]

Photo by Bill Burton

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Restonian Opera Singer to Perform at the Reston Community Center

A well-known mezzo-soprano, who resides in Reston, will take to the stage to perform a variety of songs.

Elizabeth Bishop, a long-time resident, will perform operatic songs and American folk standards, ranging from Gustav Mahler to Cole Porter.

She will be accompanied on the piano by Patrick O’Donnell, along with additional instrumental support from Salvatore Amadeo on the violin and Jihea Choi on the Cello, Paul Douglas Michnewicz, director of arts and events at Reston Community Center, told Reston Now.

“From Here to There” will take place at the Reston Community Center (2310 Colts Neck Road) at 7 p.m. on Dec. 16. Tickets are $15.

She has performed at The Metropolitan Opera and the Washington National Opera. In December, Bishop will travel to the Lyric Opera of Chicago for the role of Madame de la Haltière in “Cendrillon” — an opera adapted from Cinderella.

Bishop is part of the Reston Community Center’s lineup of old and new professional touring artists, including singer Jazzmeia Horn and DeRay Mckesson, a civil rights activist. This is her first time performing in the Professional Touring Artist Series, Michnewicz said.

Photo via Madeleine Gray Divatography

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‘The Color of Law’ Author to Lead Reston’s Housing Inclusiveness Discussion

What can Fairfax do to make Reston more affordable and diverse?

Richard Rothstein, author of “Color of Law: The Forgotten History of How our Government Segregated America,” will lead a discussion on how housing policy impacts equitability and inclusiveness in Northern Virginia communities.

The free event will be hosted at the Reston Community Center (2310 Colts Neck Road) at 5 p.m. on Nov. 29. Registration is available online.

Housing inclusivity has been an ongoing discussion in Reston with county officials working to implement a series of ambitious housing affordability goals by the end of the decade. The average rent in Fairfax County is between $1,700 and $1,800 a month, but half of the jobs in the area earn less than $50,000 annually.

Following Rothstein’s comments will be a panel discussion with local housing experts about future plans for the area’s housing.

Copies of the book will be available for sale at the box office for $15, and Rothstein will be available after the lecture for book signings.

Photo via Liveright Publishing

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Art Exhibit to Raise Money for Cornerstones Ahead of Holiday Shopping Event

Ahead its annual holiday and gifts shopping event, Reston Community Center Lake Anne is organizing an exhibit to benefit Cornerstones, a local nonprofit organization.

Artists will display and sell original artwork in the Jo Ann Rose Gallery from Nov. 26 through Jan. 7. A holiday gift shopping event will follow on Dec. 1, turning the facility into a marketplace with food and gifts from 11 a.m. to 4 p.m. Entries fees and 10 percent of sales will be donated to Cornerstones.

The exhibit will include work in a variety of mediums, including watercolor, oil, mixed media, collage and photography. Artists will donate 10 percent of proceeds from sales during the shopping event and throughout December. Cornerstones helps operate the Embry Rucker Community Shelter, Laurel Learning Center, and community services outreach.

The event has raised $13,700 for the nonprofit organization since the first exhibit was held in 1999. For more information, contact Gloria Morrow.

File photo

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Wednesday Morning Notes

Wexton, Democratic incumbents celebrate Election Day victories — Local voters also turned out in numbers the surpassed recent midterm elections. The Fairfax County Office of Elections estimated a 69.7 percent turnout for the general election, up from 45.7 percent in 2014. [Fairfax County Times]

DMV2Go in RTC today — The wireless office on wheels will offer DMV services today from 9 a.m. to 4 p.m. at the pavilion. Services include driver’s license and ID card applications and renewals, driving records, decals and more. [Reston Town Center]

Reston Association budget hearing, assessment increase proposal tomorrow — RA will hear comments from members about its plans to increase assessments by $11 at a hearing tomorrow (Thursday). [Reston Association]

Robert Sapolsky to speak at CenterStage tonight — Sapolsky, a MacArthur “Genius” Fellow and a professor of biology and neurology at Stanford University, will speak tonight. His lectures touch on topics like stress, baboons, the biology of individuality, memory aggression and schizophrenia. Tickets are sold out but the box office will maintain a waitlist today for any returned tickets. [Reston Community Center]

Photo by John Pinkman

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What’s Going On This Weekend in Reston?

The Hindu Festival of Lights, known as Diwali, lights up Reston Regional Library with a cultural fair on Saturday.

The event will include games, music, food, arts and crafts and other activities. Attendees of all ages are invited to the fair, which runs from 10:30 a.m. to 12:30 p.m.

Below is a limited list of other 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.

  • In the mood for a little theater? Performances of Hairspray continue today and this weekend on CenterStage at RCC Hunters Woods. Tickets are $28 for adults, $24 for seniors 65 and older, and $24 for students and youth under 18.
  • Junior merchants will sell a variety of gently-used toys, books, and other child-friendly items on Saturday at the Children’s Fall Flea Market at Reston Community Center Hunters Woods from 9 a.m. to noon on Saturday.
  • You can also kickstart your morning with a beer run near Lake Anne Brewhouse from 9:45-10:30 a.m. All ages and paces are welcome.
  • On Saturday, Reston Community Orchestra will kick off the season with their opening concert at Reston Community Center Hunters Woods at 4 p.m. The concert is open to attendees of all ages.
  • Sing books with Miss Emily on Saturday at Reston Regional Library from 10:30 to 11 a.m. The event is co-sponsored by Friends of Reston Regional Library.
  • Blue Sky Puppets present folktales with puppets Chester, Buster, and Suzy Pig on Saturday from 2-3 p.m. at Reston Regional Library. The event is also cosponsored by Friends of Reston Regional Library.
  • Reston Association needs volunteers to help monitor stream conditions from 11 a.m. to 2 p.m. on Saturday. No prior experience is required and all ages are welcome.
  • The Lake House will be open for community drop-in time and light refreshments from noon to 2 p.m. on Saturday as part of a series of open houses.
  • Maria Gianferrari reads her book “Operation Rescue Dog” at Scrawl Books on Saturday at 11 a.m. The story is about a girl who goes on a quest to find a rescue dog she plans to adopt.
  • International games week kicks off on Sunday with the chance to play a few classic board games at Reston Regional Library from 1-5 p.m.
  • Professor Harry Butowsky also continues his six-part lecture series on the history of World War II on Sunday at the Reston Regional Library from 2-4 p.m.
  • On Sunday, Gina Clowes will perform as part of Frying Pan Farm Park’s Bluegrass Barn Series. Doors open at 6 p.m. and the show begins at 7 p.m. Tickets are $18 in advance and $20 at the door.

File photo

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Reston Community Center Children’s Fall Flea Market is This Weekend

Reston Community Center will present its annual Children’s Fall Flea Market this Saturday from 9 a.m. through noon at RCC Hunters Woods.

Attendees can browse several tables for gently-used toys, books, games, video, and other child-friendly items. Junior merchants between the age of six and 13 will sell the items.

The event is open to all. Admission is one non-perishable item for Cornerstones’ Thanksgiving Food Drive, which kicks off today.

Vendor spots are still available. Single-size, 3’x6′ tables cost $10 for Reston residents $15 for all others. Shared tables that measure 3’x9′ with two or more merchants are $15 for Reston residents and $23 for all others. Registration is open online.

For more information, contact RCC’s youth program director Debbie Heron at [email protected].

Photo via Reston Community Center

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