The event at Lake Fairfax Park is one of nine around the county scheduled for 9-11:30 a.m. April 1. The cleanup effort is a partnership between the Park Authority and The Nature Conservancy to attempt to prevent trash from reaching the Chesapeake Bay, the nation’s largest estuary.
Snacks, giveaways and other incentives will be offered to volunteers.
For more details or to register, visit the Fairfax County Park Authority website.
Photo via Fairfax County Park Authority
More Speak Out Against Paid Parking — The owner of Obi Sushi says sales are down about a third since Boston Properties initiated paid parking at Reston Town Center. Meanwhile, the president of the Reston Citizens Association says it’s just one more sore spot to a community battling an increasing cost of living. [Washington Post]
Retired Detective’s Story Gains Attention — As we reported, retired Fairfax County Police Department detective Bruce Wiley took care of a 17-year-old intruder at his Beaver Circle home last week using no more than a flashlight and a baton. Since, he has shared further details about the incident with Washington television stations. “I was lucky that he didn’t have a gun,” he told one. [Fox 5 DC/WJLA]
Nominations Still Open for Reston Volunteer Awards — Candidates for Reston Association’s Volunteer Service Awards can still be nominated until Friday. The awards recognize individuals, families, groups and businesses that make a significant contribution to the community through volunteer service. [Reston Association]
SLHS Baseball Star Continues His Success — Jared Abelson, a 2015 South Lakes High School graduate, picked up two hits for Macalester College in a game over the weekend against Marian University in the Tucson Invitational. The sophomore is batting .478 through six games this season. [Macalester College Athletics]
Girl Scout to Help Repair Bridge — Sathiya Kannan of Reston plans to work on a bridge on Alexandria’s Mount Vernon Trail as a Silver Award Project. She will be part of a team of National Park Service volunteers on March 25. Additional help is sought. [Connection Newspapers]
Questions on County Budget Proposal Being Accepted — County Executive Ed Long will participate in an online discussion about his proposed FY 2018 budget at 3 p.m. Friday. Residents are being invited to submit questions in advance. [Fairfax County]
Reston Woman Named Humanitarian Group’s Director — Cecilia Capece (pictured) is the new executive director of the INMED Opportunity Center. According to a press release, her role with the Sterling-based organization will be to “focus on developing partnerships to expand INMED’s ability to serve low-income communities in Loudoun County to protect children from the immediate and irreversible harm of abuse, neglect, violence, homelessness and instability and to equip them for self-sufficiency and success.” [INMED Opportunity Center]
Herndon Reston Softball Seeks Players, Coaches, Umps — The girls’ fast-pitch softball league season begins March 3-4 with player tryouts and evaluations. Practices start in mid-March, and opening day is April 1. [Herndon Reston Youth Softball]
Reston Association is expanding its Volunteer Reston Service Awards in 2017 to include more recognition categories. Nominations opened Jan. 27 and can be made through March 17.
RA’s service awards recognize individuals, families, groups and businesses that make a significant contribution to the community through volunteer service.
The 2017 awards winners will be announced at a special ceremony during National Volunteer Week, Thursday, April 27, from 6:30-9 p.m. at The Lake House.
Every year, hundreds of Reston volunteers give their time to make a difference in the lives of those around them. RA volunteers participate in community cleanup and environmental events; take shifts at community events and festivals; serve on the RA Board of Directors, advisory committees and working groups; and others provide daily operational support to the association.
Completed nomination forms should be brought to the RA headquarters (12001 Sunrise Valley Drive) and left for Ha Brock, RA’s volunteer supervisor. They can also be mailed in or emailed to [email protected].
Photo via Reston Association
Roman Blazauskas, president of SpeedPro Imaging Northern Virginia, said in a press release that the funds will help support the Y’s efforts to help less fortunate youth attend preschool and day camp.
“There is only one YMCA in Fairfax County serving 10,000 individuals and throughout the year, many at-risk local youth and families apply for financial assistance to participate in the Y’s early learning programs, sports, STEM activities, child care, and summer camps at little or no cost.”
SpeedPro NOVA’s program serves as the cornerstone of its overall community relations efforts, which includes volunteerism and sponsorships. Recognizing this commitment, Blazauskas was honored as Volunteer of the Year by the Greater Reston Chamber of Commerce in 2016.
The company also recently announced it will make Loudoun Habitat for Humanity its 2017 Charitable Partner.
“Having a stable home and fixed address is life-changing for families, including their furry friends,” Blazauskas said. “Habitat makes that happen, and we look forward to supporting their work this year.”
When tens of thousands descend upon the National Mall on Saturday for the Women’s March on Washington, many will be adorned with pink knitted hats. A large number of those hats, products of the worldwide Pussyhat Project, will have filtered through a home on Lake Newport Road in Reston.
The house, which looks quiet from the outside, is filled with bustling action as women of all ages work hard to prepare hats that are arriving every day. Boxes upon boxes of the hats, knitted by concerned people from around the world, are stacked in the home’s basement in various stages of the organizational process.
College student Molly McKnight and her mother, Carrie, volunteered to make their Reston home the hub for the hats. Family friends, including Jeanne Robertson and Diane Brown, are among the dozens of volunteers who have assisted with the project.
“We’re the grunt work,” said Robertson, who was processing hats in the basement Wednesday along with Brown. “There are a lot of friends who are here to help.”
Stefanie Kamerman, the project’s D.C. organizer, is coordinating the effort. She said the final days have been hectic, as many hundreds of hats — some days as many as 2,000 — have been showing up through the mail every day.
“We are hoping to distribute them at the march successfully,” Kamerman said. “We are trying to get the hats from Point A to Point B, to get them to the women who are marching on the 21st.”
Between 200,000 and 500,000 women are expected to participate in the event Saturday, Kamerman said. About 60,000 hand-crafted hats have been donated to the project so far, she said. The collection site on Lake Newport Road has been operating since early December.
Politically, Kamerman said she considers herself a Libertarian. She said concerns about women’s issues that arose during the election of soon-to-be President Donald Trump led her to fight for the female voice.
“It’s not necessarily that we’re anti-Trump; we’re just trying to take back those infamous words he said on the ‘Access Hollywood’ video,” Kamerman said, referring to audio from 2005 that emerged prior to the election in which Trump used vulgar terms to describe his treatment of women.
According to the project’s website, its name is in part a reference to one of those terms used by Trump — and its goal is to “reclaim the term as a means of empowerment.”
Each hat that is donated is accompanied by a note from its knitter, which includes not just a name and a hometown, but a list of women’s rights issues most important to him or her.
“Being involved [in this project] has opened my eyes to a lot of women that are hurting, and who don’t feel like their voices are being heard,” Kamerman said.
More than 50 volunteers are working for the project across the United States, Kamerman said, with about half of them having worked from the Reston site at some point during the past month.
“It’s helping other women get something that is special,” she said. “We’re all working together for something amazing.”
Kamerman said she and many of the other volunteers will be attending the march Saturday, both to support the cause and to see the fruits of their labor.
“I’m looking forward to seeing what we’ve been working so hard for coming together,” she said. “It’s been an amazing experience.”
Kamerman said she is hopeful her 8-year-old daughter, who has been helping with the project as well, will lead the next generation of activism.
“I wanted to raise her in a world where she will continue the good fight for women and men across the nation, regardless of who they love or what they believe or who they are,” she said.
For some, this was just a three-day weekend.
But for 100 Reston volunteers of all ages, Martin Luther King Jr. Day weekend provided an opportunity to give back to their community. Reston Association and Reston Community Center partnered with Southgate Community Center, Cornerstones and The Closet on several community service projects Saturday.
Among the projects completed by volunteers were an outdoor cleanup; the sorting of donated toys and preparation of bagged lunches for the residents of the Embry Rucker Community Shelter; and the organization of the Southgate Community Center library and kitchen.
“Volunteers demonstrated that we each have the power to make our community a stronger and more vibrant place to live, work, play and get involved,” said Ha Brock, Reston Association’s volunteer supervisor. “Many thanks to everyone that participated in the National Day of Service.”
Brock says it’s not too late to volunteer.
“If you would like to continue to get involved, Reston Association offers a variety of opportunities in our community,” she said.
More information about Reston Association’s volunteer program is available at their website.
Fairfax County Public Library Reveals Most Popular Books of 2016 — The Fairfax County Public Library yesterday announced that the books locals checked out the most this year were “The Girl on the Train” for adult fiction, “The Life-Changing Magic of Tidying Up: the Japanese Art of Decluttering and Organizing” for adult nonfiction, “The Fault in Our Stars” for teens and “Green Eggs and Ham” for children. [Fairfax County]
Reston-Area MLK Day Service Projects Planned — The Reston Community Center is partnering with the Reston Association, Southgate Community Center, Cornerstones, The Closet and other local organizations to host a day of community services projects in honor of Martin Luther King Jr. on Saturday, Jan. 14, from 9 a.m. to 1 p.m. [Reston Community Center]
What’s Open, Closed in Reston for Christmas — Christmas is nearly here. In Fairfax County, many government and Reston Association buildings will shut down for the holiday. [Reston Now]
Works Sunday, this year on Aug. 16, is a day of community service organized by Reston’s faith communities.
For 20 years, congregants have worked side-by-side on Works Sunday projects that help a spectrum of people in need –from serving lunch at the Embry Rucker Community Shelter to giving blood to helping out at Ronald McDonald House (which houses the families of sick children) at Inova Fairfax Hospital.
Signups have gone around at many of Reston’s churches and synagogues, but help is still needed.
Some project details (some involve time, some just a donation):
See the entire list, as well as registration info, on the Works Sunday website.
Photo: Works Sunday 2014/Credit: Tim Barwick
Collect for Kids is a coordinated school supply drive to benefit needy FCPS students. The drive will provide school supplies for the 2015-16 school year for students who qualify for free and reduced-price meals. Approximately 52,000 FCPS students receive free and reduced-price meals, FCPS says.
The drive, which will concentrate on cash, backpacks and calculators, will run through Sept. 4.
Citizens can support the students in one of three ways:
Cash donations: By partnering with Office Depot, Kitz for Kids, and Walmart, Collect for Kids purchases school supplies in bulk, translating a $1 donation into $3 worth of school supplies. A $10 donation can fill a backpack with FCPS-approved supplies. Donations are accepted online.
Backpack donations: Donations of new backpacks can be brought to any Apple FCU or Northwest FCU branch, or to any affiliated organization. Visit Apple FCU or Northwest FCU for branch locations. There is always a need for additional large backpacks for high school students, says FCPS.
Calculator donations: Calculators, which will help support students in STEM (science, technology, engineering, and math) subjects, can be donated to Apple FCU or any partnered not-for-profit organization. The Collect for Kids website lists partners.
Preferred models are the TI 30Xa Solar School Edition or TI-84 Series calculators, but other models may be donated.
NV Rides partnered with Reston Community Center to launch the service here last spring.
Volunteer drivers provide door-to-door rides for essential needs such as medical or dental appointments, shopping, personal care and banking for seniors who are no longer comfortable driving.
The service area covers residents in the Small Tax District 5 boundaries of Reston. Volunteers self-select ride requests and may choose not to drive farther distances.
To volunteer, visit NV Rides on RCC’s website and download an application. They will pay for a DMV and background check. You can choose your own rides and hours.