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by Fatimah Waseem May 15, 2018 at 2:30 pm 2 Comments

Reston Regional Library is one of 50 libraries across the country to receive “The Great American Read” grant from the American Library Association and PBS.

The Great American Read is an eight-episode show that explores the power of reading. Viewers will select the top book of 100 best-loved novels at the end of the show, which runs from May 22 through October.

The Reston branch will host programs related to the television series with the help of WETA, the local PBS station.

“We are delighted to be part of such a unique initiative that encourages appreciation of reading and the world of discovery opened to us through books,” Library Director Jessica Hudson said.

The library will host a premiere party for the series on May 22 and special screenings of each episode thereafter. A lecture series led by local scholars, writing workshops for adults and teens and a discussion with Newbery medal winner and Reston native Kwame Alexander is also planned.

The top 100 books are selected through a public opinion polling service, with 7,200 respondents.

Photo via Fairfax County Government

by Kalina Newman July 21, 2017 at 9:00 am 12 Comments

Lake Anne Brew House Earns Best Brewery Spot — Determined by the results of the Virginia Craft Brewers Cup, Lake Anne Brew House is one of three breweries that have shared the title of Best Brewery from Virginia Craft Beer magazine. [Virginia Craft Beer]

Gillespie, Northam Confirmed for Debate — The two gubernatorial candidates will participate a debate in Tysons on Sept. 19, hosted by the Northern Virginia Chamber of Commerce. Chuck Todd of NBC’s “Meet the Press” will moderate. [NOVA Chamber]

Former Clyde’s Chef Now in Charlottesville — Patrick Carroll, who formerly served as executive chef with Clyde’s of Reston, has been tapped as the new executive chef at Three Notch’d Brewing Company in Charlottesville. The craft brewer is investing nearly $3 million to expand its restaurant. [Gov. Terry McAuliffe]

Terry McAuliffe on ‘The Daily Show’ — The Virginia governor was on “The Daily Show with Trevor Noah” earlier this week, talking about how he challenged the Trump Administration’s voter fraud commission. He also weighed in on the GOP’s effort to repeal Obamacare. [The Daily Show]

Suspected Child Predator Nabbed — Jerberth Adallir Palma, 43, of Springfield, was arrested July 13 by Fairfax County Police and charged with numerous sex crimes against children. Detectives believe there might be other victims.  [Fairfax County Police Department]

by Kalina Newman July 20, 2017 at 4:00 pm 0

Lauren Liess has been a face in the Northern Virginia interior-decorating scene for years.

Now Liess, formerly of Herndon and now of Great Falls, has the opportunity to spread her knowhow nationwide.

Liess and her husband, David, are now the stars of their own television show, “Best Home on the Block.” A pilot episode will air on HGTV — and if the response is good enough, it could become a regular series.

Her company, Lauren Liess & Co., was founded in 2010 with the intent to offer stylish full-scale interior design to residents of the D.C. area. She’s worked on clients across the country and many lavish homes in D.C.

Liess also has a blog, Pure Style Home, and an Instagram account with over 50,000 followers. Her rustic style combined with contemporary accents has garnered her a massive following — and the attention of HGTV.

In a blog post last month, Liess said the process to create the show began last spring and filming wrapped up a few months ago.

It was seriously creatively satisfying to get the chance to design, renovate & decorate a home on such a short timeline and we all (especially our clients!!) got a major dose of instant gratification. I used mostly vintage and ready-made furnishings (with a few special custom projects thrown in!) to meet our deadline and it was such a blast.

The pilot will take a different turn from the usual house-flip shows that have dominated HGTV the past few years. Instead, the Liesses plan to follow “underwhelming” houses in the D.C. area and document the renovation process.

“We looked for clients and found a super-sweet couple,” Leiss said in a Facebook Live video announcing the show. “We renovated their house from top to bottom and did it in a really short time period.”

trailer for the show shared by Liess on Facebook shows off blocks of D.C. suburbs crowded with identical homes, while Liess and her husband comment about how they’re all boring and the same. The pair works to deliver a complete renovation on one of them, inside and out.

The pilot episode of “Best Home on the Block” will air Sunday, July 30, at 2 p.m. on HGTV.

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