Reston, VA

Cafesano’s cafe in South Lakes Village Center is finally open after a fire fired the Italian and Mediterranean restaurant to cease operation of its dine-in services.

But normal business has not resumed yet. As of last week, Cafesano is offering a limited dine-in menu at the location. The full menu is being offered for all online, take-out and catering orders.

A Dec. 1 fire that started in the kitchen forced the business to partially close. Fire investigators discovered that the fire was caused by grease buildup in the ventilation system.

The incident caused $2,000 in damages, according to fire investigators.

Photo via Cafesano

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It could take up to two weeks for Cafesano’s cafe to reopen in South Lakes Village Center after a fire caused $2,000 in damages in early December.

A company representative told Reston Now that the Italian and Mediterranean restaurant is currently taking takeout orders.

On Dec. 1, a fire broke out at the shopping center. Fire investigators said the fire was caused by grease buildup in the store’s ventilation system.

An exact opening date has not been set yet.

Photo by Jay Westcott

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A fire has broken out at South Lakes Village Center, according to officials.

Earlier this morning, units were on the scene of a fire at the shopping center, which is located at 11000 South Lakes Drive, according to the Fairfax County Fire and Rescue Department.

A second fire alarm was requested around 10 a.m. today.

This story will be updated.

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Construction on new upgrades to make South Lakes Village Center more of a local destination are planned for this summer.

Thomas Regnell, president and CEO of Chevy Chase Land Company, told Reston Now that construction is expected to start over the next several weeks. Planned upgrades, which include an amphitheater, a bike rack and repair station, and a fire pit, are intended to help turn the aging commercial center into an attractive destination that brings local residents together.

Regnell said it was too early to indicate when upgrades will be completed, but the construction process will take eight weeks.

Some features of the plan — which originally included ping pong tables — were removed at the request of Reston Association’s Design Review Board, which approved the project in June. Citizen groups and nearby residents sounded off against the plans, which they said would attract noise, vandalism, and too much activity.

The project is expected to cost between $300,000 and $400,000, Regnell said.

Photos via Chevy Chase Land Company

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Several restaurants around Reston regularly offer performance venues for DJs, touring artists and local bands.

Reston Now rounded up some spots offering a range of food and live music.

Lake Anne 

Kalypso’s Sports Tavern (1617 Washington Plaza N.)

What’s on the menu: Greek, Italian and American fare on the menu. Happy hour is from 11 a.m.-7 p.m. on weekdays.

Live music: Kalypso’s hosts live bands and DJs from 9:30 p.m.-1 a.m. on Fridays. Diners on Wednesdays and Saturdays can partake in karaoke from 9:30 p.m.-1:3- p.m. All of the events are free, according to Kalypso’s website.

Cafe Montmartre (1625 Washington Plaza N.)

What’s on the menu: French and Vietnamese cuisine for lunch, brunch and dinner.

Live music: Tom Saputo & Friends perform the second Friday of every month, letting diners enjoy singing and dancing from 7:30-10:30 p.m. Other upcoming shows include The Get Down Band from 5-8 p.m. on March 29 and New Blue Soul Band from 7-10 p.m. with a $10 cover charge on April 5.

Lake Anne Coffee House and Wine Bar (1612 Washington Plaza N.)

What’s on the menu: Locally sourced American fare and coffee.

Live music: The live music usually takes place upstairs by the wine bar Wednesdays-Saturdays. Until May, locals can listen to jazz with half-priced bottles of wine on Thursdays and music ranging from classical guitar to jazz on Saturdays.

Reston Town Center

Crafthouse (1888 Explorer Street)

What’s on the menu: American pub food: burgers, sandwiches, salon, steak. Happy hour is from 3-9 p.m. on weekdays.

Live music: The growing beer-centric restaurant chain usually has a live band or DJ playing at 10 p.m. on Fridays and Saturdays. Karaoke starts at 8 p.m. on Wednesdays.

South Lakes Village Center

Red’s Table (11150 South Lakes Drive)

What’s on the menu: American fare with a focus on meat and seafood. Happy hour is from 3:30-7 p.m. every day, featuring $4 for the daily beer on tap and $5 cocktail of the day.

Live music: Red’s Table hosts weekly live music performances. Upcoming ones include Bad Influence Band on March 30 and singer and musician Ted Garber on April 19.

Did we miss a spot? Let us know in the comments. Check back next week for our roundup for places with live music and food in Herndon.

Photo via Ted Garber/Facebook

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Now that spring has finally arrived, warmer weather will invite locals outside to mill around Reston’s many shopping areas.

While Reston has an abundance of stores at Plaza America, Reston Town Center and the Spectrum, one of Reston’s unique design elements lies in its mix of residential and retail at its five village centers.

The first one — the Lake Anne Village Center — looks almost the same today as it did in 1976.

Many of the other village centers, though, are undergoing transformations, including South Lakes and Tall Oaks.

The Hunters Woods Village Center, which saw most of its original buildings demolished and replaced with more modern retail in the 1990s, is on a 2017 list of potential spots for new residential development put together by the Fairfax County Department of Planning and Zoning.

Meanwhile, North Point Village Center has seen retailers and businesses leave and open. Most recently, a Thai restaurant opened at the village center.

Reston Now wants to know if there is a certain village center you frequently visit or really love going to.

Photo via Courtlyn McHale/Flickr

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Seahawks fans can head to the Chipotle in the South Lakes Village Shopping Center next week to help raise funds for South Lakes High School girls basketball.

The Chipotle at 11160 South Lakes Drive will donate 33 percent of proceeds for customers who display the flyer or mention the Seahawks.

The fundraiser runs from 4 p.m. to 8 p.m. on Monday (Jan. 21).

South Lakes High School girls varsity basketball won their eighth consecutive game at Washington-Lee High School on Jan. 8.

Photo via South Lakes High School Basketball/Facebook

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This week on Then and Now, we’re going back to our roots as seeing how Reston’s iconic lakes have changed over the years. With help from Fairfax County’s Historic Imagery Viewer, which offers aerial views of the county dating back to 1937, Reston Now has put together a review of how the area around Lake Thoreau and Lake Audubon has evolved since the lake’s creation.

Like Lake Anne, there was no “South Lakes” in photography from 1960. Reston as a planned community was founded in 1964. Before that, much of what is the South Lakes were forests with a few cut-through roads. Interestingly, where Lake Audubon would be built later there was a large pond.

Lake Thoreau and Lake Audubon were built as reservoirs collecting the runoff created by the rapid urbanization nearby. Lake Thoreau was built in 1970 and Lake Audubon was built in 1971, though from the aerial photography there wasn’t much of a “lake” about Audubon until the late 1980s.

One of the earliest large scale developments in the area was the South Lakes High School, which opened in 1978 on 600 acres of land with an “open classroom” design.

The school was not broken into individual classrooms, a plan teachers and students discovered early on was ineffective and distracting. They wound up building temporary barriers until more permanent ones built in 2006 killed the open classroom idea for good.

Langston Hughes Middle School was originally an intermediate school for South Lakes High School, but in 1980 it was officially renamed the Langston Hughes Intermediate School, then Langston Hughes Middle School in the early 1990s.

By 1980, new residential developments had sprung up along the northern and southern edges of Lake Thoreau.

In 1984, the South Lakes Shopping Center opened, marking the last major shift in the area, though the design of that area could be undergoing some visible changes.

Between 1990 and 2017, most of the changes to the area involved the filling in of residential developments in the vicinity of the lake. In 2006, South Lakes High School also expanded and the aforementioned open-space classroom model was eliminated.

If you enjoyed this piece, check out our Then and Now coverage of:

If there are any places in Reston you would like to see covered as a Then and Now feature, let us know in the comments.

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Updated 11:20 — The Ping-Pong Tables were removed, from the project and the story.

Construction on new upgrades for the South Lakes Village Center could be coming next year.

The upgrades proposed by the Chevy Chase Land Company were approved by the Reston Association Design Review Board in June. Plans include upgrades like an amphitheater and a fire pit.

The upgrades are planned to help turn the aging commercial center into a local destination, though earlier this year residents nearby said they were concerned that the upgrades could lead to increased noise levels and vandalism.

Idrissa Sesay, assistant property manager of South Lakes Village Center, told Reston Now in an email that the company is still working on a construction timeline.

“Our marketing director informed me that we are working on the construction timeline now, but hoping to have [the construction timeline] complete this coming spring,” Sesay wrote.

According to the Design Review Board’s approval, the upgrades would add also add a bicycle rack and a bike repair station to make the area more bike accessible.

Photos via Chevy Chase Land Company
This story has been updated

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To the dismay of some area residents, a series of upgrades — including an amphitheater, fire pit and ping pong tables — are being considered for South Lakes Village Center (11120 South Lakes Drive).

The project by village center owner Chevy Chase Land Company is intended to activate space at the edge of Lake Thoreau between Cafesano and Red’s Table.

But residents near the center and merchants worry the new space will become a magnet for youth from Langston Hughes Middle School and South Lakes High School. The project would also increase noise — a concern that already rattles some residents as sound travels down the lake.

Reston Association’s Design Review Board deferred a decision on the project Tuesday night to allow the development team, which includes engineering firm Kimley-Horn, to revise the plan. The DRB could consider updated plans at its next meeting.

Mary Sapp, president of the Lakeport Cluster Association, said the project would increase noise levels, raise safety concerns due to unsupervised teens, and increase the chance of vandalism of the plaza’s “very attractive features.” Sapp said three of the cluster’s 11 bollard lights were destroyed, three were knocked over and two Safeway carts were thrown into the lake from the dock over the last 15 months.

We assure you that Lakeport Cluster is not ‘anti-students’; a number of our residents have children (or grandchildren who visit often), and several are actively involved with South Lakes High School,” Sapp wrote in a statement to the DRB.

Charles Foster, a Lakeport Cluster resident, called the project an “unprecedented experiment in Reston” that would attract 3,400 young adults within walking distance, creating an environment that “ allows anyone at any time to engage in any type of activity.”

Upgrades include an amphitheater, new lighting, a chalkboard wall, outdoor ping pong, lounge and plaza seating area and outdoor ping pong. A new, back-lit sign is also proposed for the center.

Gil Blankespoor, a resident in the Lakeport Cluster, questioned how the property owner will maintain the upgraded site.

“We know Chevy Chase Land’s heart is in the right place. They did a fabulous job last year with the new landscaping, and their plan is to build community activities. But what they propose is in the wrong place — far too close to residential developments,” Blankespoor said.

The development team said they were open to removing the gaming features of the site, including ping pong tables, in order to allay community concerns. DRB members also suggested removing outdoor cushions, which could end up in the lake, and adding more shaded trees.

In response to concerns about attracting area teens, Michael Casey of Kimley-Horn said the plaza was open to “all generations” and should not exclude any demographic. By design, the commercial plaza is placed next to residential development, he said.

“This is what community is,” he said.

Given the “brutal reality” of the retail world, activating the space is necessary to ensure the long-term viability of the center, said Tom Regnell, president of Chevy Chase Land Company.

“We are interested in that very long-term view,” Regnell said.

Photos via handout

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Thursday Morning Notes

Top Reston Volunteers to Be Honored — An awards ceremony to recognize individuals, families, groups and businesses who make a significant contribution to the Reston community through volunteer service will be held tonight from 6:30-9 p.m. at The Lake House (11450 Baron Cameron Ave.). [Reston Association]

Meeting on Glade Drive Bike Lanes Tonight — The Fairfax County Department of Transportation will host a community meeting tonight from 6:30-8 p.m. at Hunters Woods Elementary School (2401 Colts Neck Road) to discuss potential changes to Glade Drive, including the addition of bike lanes and sharrows. [Reston Now]

Fairfax Corner Art Festival (Sponsored) — Fairfax Corner will transform into an outdoor art showcase during the 2nd Annual Fairfax Corner Art Festival this weekend. Monument Corner Drive will feature more than 100 national and international artists, arranged in pop-up gallery style and filled with all mediums of fine art. Admission is free and it’s taking place this Saturday and Sunday 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. at 4100 Monument Corner Drive, Fairfax. [Howard Alan Events]

Reston Couples Find Business Success with Mat — Gerald and Michelle Zingraf, along with Ben and Camille Arneberg, have made about 6,000 sales of their new product, TerraMat, since February. The ergonomic anti-fatigue desk mat is designed to provide exercise, stretching and therapeutic massage for the feet of those who spend hours at a time standing at a desk. [Fairfax County EDA]

Red’s Table Has New Top Chef — Adam Stein has left Red’s Table to open his own D.C. restaurant, The Eleanor. Kevin Ettenson, 28, is the new executive chef at Red’s Table (11150 South Lakes Drive). Among his plans are an emphasis on housemade pastas and an expanded late-night menu. [Northern Virginia Magazine]

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Tuesday Morning Notes

Local Resident Part of Climate Reality Leadership Corps — Christina Blocksom, of Reston, is one of several area citizens who recently participated in Climate Reality Training in Denver. Former Vice President Al Gore founded the project. [Inside NOVA]

Red’s Table Has New Seasonal Cocktails — Rhubarb purée is a special ingredient in one of the spring drinks at the restaurant, located at the South Lakes Village Center. [DC Eater]

comScore Working With Facebook to Improve Digital Ads — The Reston-based company is introducing new demographic metrics to help provide advertisers with “transparent, uniform measurement across all platforms and devices.” [Yahoo! Finance]

‘Guys and Dolls’ Coming to Herndon HS Stage — The theater department at Herndon High School will present the musical comedy this weekend. There will be shows Friday and Saturday night, and a Sunday matinee. Tickets are $15. [Fairfax Times]

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South Lakes Village Center

South Lakes Village Center has a new owner. The shopping center was recently purchased by Chevy Chase Land Co. for $62 million, The CoStar Group reports. The center was previously owned by a subsidiary for Cornerstone Real Estate Advisers.

There are no plans for redevelopment of the 110,000-square-foot village center, which was built in 1984 and is anchored by Safeway.

South Lakes currently has only one vacancy, an 888-square-foot space formerly occupied by Yogiberry frozen yogurt.

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Michael Wayne Edwards, Sept. 6 booking/FCPDMichael Wayne Edwards, the man charged with filming women without their consent at the South Lakes Safeway in Reston last summer, will be back in court in two weeks.

Edwards, of Centreville, was found guilty of filming women and simulated masturbation in Fairfax County District Court in January.

However, Edwards’ attorneys immediately appealed the decision, which paves the way for a new trial in Fairfax County Circuit Court.

He has a motion hearing on May 13, court information shows.

Here’s what happened:

Edwards, who was employed as a trainer at a South Lakes fitness studio at the time of his arrest, was charged in August and September for two incidents.

The first incident was July 24, where the victim said she was in the South Lakes Safeway and felt someone someone bump her and then touch her underneath clothing while she was in the store.

The other incident was Aug. 5. In that incident, a woman said Edwards followed her as she shopped at Safeway, and then followed her down Sunrise Valley Drive as she returned to work. He also exposed himself, the woman said. Read More

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Michael Wayne Edwards, Sept. 6 booking/FCPDMichael Wayne Edwards Jr., the Centreville man charged with filming women without their consent in the South Lakes Safeway, was found guilty by a Fairfax County District Court judge on several of the charges Friday.

Edwards, who was employed as a trainer at a nearby Reston gym at the time of his arrest, was charged in August and September for two incidents here.

The first incident was July 24, where the victim said she was in the South Lakes Safeway and felt someone someone bump her and then touch her underneath clothing while she was in the store.

The other incident was Aug. 5. In that incident, a woman said Edwards followed her as she shopped at Safeway, and then followed her down Sunrise Valley Drive as she returned to work. He also exposed himself, the woman said.

In the two cases, Edwards was charged with stalking, indecent exposure, filming a person without their consent (three charges) and simulated masturbation. He was released on $2,500 bond last summer.

In court Friday, Judge Ian O’Flaherty dismissed three of the charges and found him guilty of two of the filming charges and the simulated masturbation charge.

O’Flaherty sentenced Edwards to one-year supervised probation and six months in jail.

However, Edwards’ attorney, Jennifer Raimo, immediately appealed the sentence. When that happens, the defendant can remain free on bond while the case is revisited in Fairfax County Circuit Court.

Raimo had no comment on the case.

This is not the first time Edwards has been accused of a sexually related crime. In 2010, he was charged with several accounts of second-degree assault after he squirted semen from a bottle on women as they exited a Giant and Michael’s craft stores in Gaithersburg, Md.

Edwards pled guilty to one of those charges (the rest were dropped as part of the plea deal). He was fined $500 and given a three-year suspended jail sentence, Montgomery County records show. His probation period ended in June 2014.

Photo: Michael Wayne Edwards, Sept. 6 booking photo/FCPD

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