April 20th, 5-7 PM
NETWORKING HAPPY HOUR
A Critical Issue for Annandale
Fairfax County is proposing a parking amendment to Article 6 of the Zoning Ordinance that will reduce Minimum Parking Requirements (MPRs) both in residential and commercial areas. There are some benefits to the concept of reducing MPRs and residents support reductions that are reasonable and add a net benefit to the environment. The currently proposed parking amendment does not attain these goals. Residents have raised many issues associated with the proposed parking amendment during the last year, both in the County work group and in the virtual Town Halls. Some of these issues have been addressed, but many still exist. Issues which residents are the most concerned about include the following:
- The amendment benefits developers and the County, but it does not improve the quality of life for residents and does not do enough for the environment.
- While many think that minimum parking requirements should be reduced near metro transit stations, many have concerns about reducing MPRs in areas not near metro stations. The claim of County staff that MPRs can be reduced in areas where there is currently bus service instead of metro service is imprudent. Bus service in Fairfax County has been cut in the past for various reasons and could easily be cut in the future, leaving residents in these areas without necessary transportation.
- In regards to reducing MPRs in areas near metro transit stations, many think that this reduction should be done in relationship to distance from the metro station. Many surrounding jurisdictions choose to reduce MPRs within one half of a mile of a metro station. This is far more reasonable than reducing MPRs in the entire zoning designation, which is what Fairfax County is proposing.
- The County must identify the specific challenges of each area before changing parking requirements. Applying percentage reductions to areas based on their zoning designation is not sufficient.
- Many residents have voiced extreme concern that the proposed parking rates for multifamily dwelling units are not sufficient to support the residents living in these multifamily buildings. Residents have not found meaningful analysis for these proposed parking rates in the material posted on the Parking Reimagined website and do not think that they have received reasonable answers to their questions at the various virtual Town Halls hosted by the County.
- Reductions in MPRs need to take into consideration that we are now seeing extended families living in townhouses and multifamily dwellings. Also, reductions in MPRs should be integrated with other aspects of parking, such as enforcement procedures that ensure overflow parking into adjacent communities is prevented.
- Reductions in MPRs must provide adequate loading spaces for numerous daily deliveries and strict enforcement to ensure handicapped spaces remain accessible for handicapped use only. There needs to be a careful case by case review if a developer wants a reduction or waiver of loading spaces. Keep a public hearing requirement with notice and an opportunity to be heard is a matter of dignity and respect for the handicapped population in Fairfax County.
- Residents are concerned that the amendment gives the Director of Land Development Services (LDS) the ability to issue reductions in MPRs through administrative action, for up to 50% of the required parking. Residents do not think that MPRs should be further reduced without information indicating the availability of other accessible parking. In these cases, residents think that a public hearing concerning the further reduction in MPRs should be held.
- Residents do not think that the proposed parking amendment does enough to benefit the environment as a result of the reduction in required parking. Throughout the world, countries are using reductions in MPRs to increase green spaces to assist with climate issues, stormwater management, mitigation of heat islands and other environmental benefits. The proposed parking amendment does not require any additional green space as a result of reductions in MPRs. County staff has stated that developers are free to add green space if they wish, but that the County wants to keep the amendment “flexible”.
- County staff has stated that the parking amendment does not increase the Floor Area Ratio (FAR) of a proposed development. However, it does allow the developer to build out to the enlarged footprint resulting from the decrease in parking area. Therefore, the County could be increasing the buildings associated with a development, and hence the impervious surfaces, without an increase in FAR. It is conceivable that as a result of this amendment, Fairfax County could end up with more impervious surfaces then it currently possesses.
Even though many residents see potential benefits to reducing MPRs in certain areas throughout Fairfax County, they are worried that their questions concerning the above issues have not been adequately answered. Residents are especially apprehensive that the County does not have a viable plan, such as reducing MPRs in phases, in case their original assumptions about reducing parking requirements are incorrect.
The Board of Supervisors is deciding whether to authorize the proposed parking amendment for advertisement at their meeting on Tuesday, March 21st. If advertised, the public hearing before the Planning Commission is scheduled for Wednesday, April 19th and the public hearing before the Board of Supervisors is tentatively scheduled for Tuesday, June 6th. You can email your concerns about the amendment to the following email addresses: ClerktotheBOS@fairfaxcounty.gov Plancom@fairfaxcounty.gov
You can sign up to speak at the Planning Commission public hearing at: https://www.fairfaxcounty.gov/planningcommission/speaker Testimony can be given in person, via telephone or via video.
Fairfax County residents will be forced to live with the changes in MPRs for years. Any changes in MPRs need to be implemented in a fashion which ensures that Fairfax County has the resources and abilities to support the change. Most importantly, they need to be implemented in a fashion such that any unforeseen negative consequences which arise, will not be borne by residents.
Time to Sponsor the
Mason District Little League
In the late 1950's Annandale formed a Little League bringing the National sport and enjoyment to the boys and families in our community. Much later it joined with neighboring teams to form the Mason District Little League which brings the same spirit of teamwork, comradeship and sportsmanship to the next generation while providing them with a formative athletic experience.
The Mason District Little League is seeking sponsorship from Annandale businesses and organizations. Donations and Sponsorships are used to help keep the league operating by helping to buy equipment, making field improvements, covering scholarships to help families afford to have their kids play in the league, and more!
Mason District Little League is completely run by volunteers. Show your support for the volunteers and families by sponsoring the league and show your brand to the community. Sponsorship is very affordable beginning at $150.
The Garden Path: Get Ready for Spring
Start Planning Your Outdoor Living Space Now
PLANNING YOUR LANDSCAPE DESIGN
Spring is just around the corner, and now is the perfect time to start thinking about transforming your backyard into an outdoor living and entertainment space.
Whether you're looking to host a summer barbecue, enjoy a cozy evening by the fire pit, or relax in a peaceful garden, many landscaping elements must work together to create the perfect outdoor oasis. Here are the landscaping elements we use:
- Outdoor lighting
- Plant design
- Retaining walls
At Campbell and Ferrara, planting design is crucial for our successful outdoor designs. Our landscaping company’s focus on hardscape and landscape elements allows us to bring a holistic approach to your outdoor space.
It's time to start planning and bringing your vision to life. Let us show why you should be excited about your landscape this spring.
Beanetics Coffee Roasters
The Evolution of a Better Coffee
When Beanetics Coffee Roasters opened its doors in February 2007, Annandale residents joined communities such as Seattle and San Francisco with their own coffee micro-roaster. Beyond the prestige of having freshly roasted coffee in our community, having our own micro-roaster means that we can enjoy the full experience of drinking wonderful coffee – a naturally smooth taste, without bitterness.
Every day it is estimated that Americans consume 300 million cups of coffee. But few of these coffee drinkers ask the most important question about their coffee: when was it roasted. Who would buy a bottle of wine without first seeing what its “vintage year” was? Just as vintage is to wine, the roast date is to coffee.
Beanetics Coffee Roasters is Annandale’s only independently owned micro coffee roasting facility. Since the evolution of a better cup of coffee starts with the origin of the beans and the roasting, Beanetics customers can watch the roasting process in the glass enclosed roasting room, and select single bean or blended roasts. This home grown business has become the favorite haunt for the residential and business community. It is not unusual to see politicians, journalists, artists, joggers, or moms with a baby carriage sipping and chatting. Visit Beanetics and find coffees from around the world, and blends that you can only find at Beanetics. Seating is and has been available both indoors and out.
Besides coffee, Beanetics offers a selection of pastry and the best bagels you will find this side of NYC. They also carry a number of coffee related gift items so you can put together a single gift or an entire gift basket for the coffee lovers in your life. You can purchase coffee by the cup or by the pound to take home or to the office from some of the most knowledgeable, friendly, and professional staff found anywhere. Many started, after extensive training, part time while in high school, and have continued through college enjoying the Beanetics' atmosphere, customers, and owners.
BEANETICS COFFEE ROASTERS
7028 Columbia Pike, Annandale, VA 22003
(In the Annandale Shopping Center on Columbia Pike at Gallows Road)
www.beanetics.com (you can also order online)
- Monday to Thursday: 9am – 5pm
- Friday to Saturday: 9am – 5pm
- Sunday: 9am – 5pm
ACTIVITIES FOR ST. PADDY'S DAY
St. Patrick’s Day is a festive holiday opportunity to connect traditions, activities and fun with your senior friends and family members. Here are some great ideas to celebrate, remembering the past and making new memories together.
- Head to a local parade! Always an exciting time when available. Just make sure there’s proper seating and that seniors are safely accompanied.
- Make a St. Patrick’s Day feast! Try cooking corned beef & cabbage with potatoes, try to make an Irish Stew or a Cottage Pie.
- Go to an Irish themed restaurant for lunch or an early dinner and order some traditional foods. Don’t forget the green beer, wine or cider.
- Create homemade ornaments or decorations. Shamrocks, pots of gold and cards are easy to make. And they can boost the mood and increase dexterity for a senior.
- Make Green desserts, snacks or beverages. A little green food coloring should do the trick.
- Sing or play traditional Irish songs. They can unite all ages, reminds us of St. Patrick’s Days of past…. And bring smiles to everyone’s faces.
HOME INSTEAD SENIOR CARE
Deena Imbriglia, Community Liaison
7058 Columbia Pike, Annandale, VA 22003
(In the Annandale Shopping Center Columbia Pike at Gallows Road)
703-750-6644 . www.homeinstead.com/location/624/
Six Historical Markers Chosen to Honor the Black/African American Experience
- Six Historical Markers were chosen from a field of 53 submissions to honor the Black/African American Experience in the county.
- The Historical Marker Project launched in February 2022 and engaged students as historians to shine a light on the past by advocating for stories underrepresented in history books.
- Markers chosen include Annie Harper, who challenged the constitutionality of Virginia’s poll tax, and Colin Powell, a long-time county resident who served as the first African American Secretary of State.
The Historical Marker Project launched as part of the Black/African American Experience Project has generated six new historical markers throughout the county that will be installed over the next year. In February 2022, students and youth groups were encouraged to submit historical marker proposals that shine a light on the contributions Black/African Americans have made to our community.
Students, classes and scout troops submitted a total of 53 proposals of individuals, groups and locations relevant to Black/African American History in the county.
From there, a committee of appointees from board offices, community organizations and student representatives reviewed the proposals and selected 14 finalists that would be considered for historical markers. Four members of the History Commission were tasked with reviewing the finalists for feasibility, historical accuracy and ensuring there were no more than one marker per magisterial district. The committee chose six outstanding markers that fulfilled these criteria and were recommended to begin the research and installation process over the next year.
These six markers are:
- Louise Archer, an educator, who supported numerous students over her time.
- Lillian Blackwell, who sued successfully to ban segregation of movie theatres and public schools.
- Annie Harper, who challenged the constitutionality of Virginia’s poll tax.
- Robert Gunnell, a freedman who conveyed land for Gunnell’s Chapel, a 19th century African American Methodist Church.
- Colin Powell, who was a long-time county resident, four-star general, chairman of the joint chiefs of staff, founder of America’s Promise and the first African American secretary of state. There is an elementary school named after him in Centreville.
- December 20, 1856: The 16, which recognizes 16 enslaved individuals named in an 1856 property inventory for the land on which West Springfield High School now stands.
The next step in the process will be working with staff and members of the History Commission to refine the language of the markers, work with a vendor to create the marker and plan installations in the defined locations across the county.
The Garden Path
Ten Best Winter Trees
Your winter landscape doesn’t need to look bleak. Instead, you can incorporate trees and shrubs with attractive bark, evergreens, and other woody contrast against the winter landscape.
Your patio contractors probably built your patio so you can look at it from inside your home. If you plant trees and shrubs with berries near your patio, you’ll also have many birds visiting your backyard, which you can watch from your warm home.
Planting Design Considerations + 10 Trees & Shrubs for Winter Interest
If you want to add more winter color and attract birds to your backyard, then you want to add evergreens and woody plants with showy bark, berries, and evergreen leaves.
But first, you must consider what will grow in Annandale, VA. We’re in zone 7, so there are many trees and shrubs to consider for winter interest. Here are four characteristics to keep in mind when adding trees and shrubs to your backyard landscape:
- Attracts birds with the plant’s berries
- Look for woody plants that have sturdy branches to hold snow and ice
- Plant trees and shrubs with interesting bark
- Plant shrubs and trees with evergreen foliage.
Fortunately, in zone 7, many cultivars provide one to two of the above features to grace your landscaping this winter.
The ENDEAVOR News Magazine is the Chamber's quarterly online publication and the must read magazine in Annandale. Acquaint yourself with local businesses, community history, revitalization efforts, and issues that concern Annandale: The Crossroads of Northern Virginia TM.
January is Stalking Awareness Month
- is repeated and unwanted contact that makes you feel afraid or harassed.
- is serious, often violent, and can escalate over time.
- is common. About 1 in 6 women and 1 in 17 men have experienced stalking in their lifetime.
- is pervasive. 81% of women who were stalked by a current or former husband or cohabitating partner were physically assaulted by that partner; 31% of women were sexually assaulted.
- is a crime in all 50 states and the District of Columbia.
- is a crime that happens across all ages and genders, though people aged 18 to 24 have the highest rate of stalking victimization.
- is a crime with financial repercussions. 1 in 8 stalking victims has reported losing work because of the stalking. More than half of these victims reported losing five or more work days.
- starts early. Nearly 54% of female victims and 41% of males victims experienced stalking before the age of 25.
Stalking happens in many types of relationships:
- A current or former romantic partner
- A friend
- A stranger
- A family member
- A community member
- A boss or coworker
Stalking can look like:
- calling, texting, social media messages, or leaving voicemails even after you’ve asked them to stop.
- constantly checking in on you at home, work, or school.
- vandalizing your car or other property.
- controlling your phone, internet or social media.
- showing up where you are, even when you haven’t shared your location with them.
- asking friends, family or co-workers for information about you.
Prevention is possible. Everyone can work together to know, name, and stop stalking.
- Help educate others to define and recognize stalking behaviors.
- Engage men and boys as allies in prevention efforts.
- Create and support safe environments within relationships, schools, and communities through programs and policies that promote healthy relationships.
Have questions or need help?
- Domestic and Sexual Violence 24-Hour Hotline 703-360-7273
- Domestic Violence Action Center 703-246-4573
- Domestic and Sexual Violence Services Main Office 703-324-5730
- If the threat is immediate, call 911.
Kitchen and Bath Solutions
7024 Columbia Pike, Annandale
(in the Annandale Shopping Center) 571-232-8822
Don’t Spoil the Serenity of the Season with a House Fire
Tips for playing it safe — start with battery operated candles!
With the cold winter months comes the rise in home heating costs and the increased use of alternative heating sources. Statistics show that the number of home fires increases dramatically during the winter months, fueled in part by the increase in alternative heating sources, seasonal displays, and candles.
According to the latest figures from the National Fire Protection Association (NFPA), fireplaces, space heaters and chimneys were involved in 68 percent of the home heating fires reported to the nation’s fire departments.
It’s important to make sure you take the appropriate steps to protect what matters to you most – your loved ones and your property. Most home fires are preventable. By taking a few simple precautions, you can help ensure a warm and safe winter.
At the Top of the Safety List:
Don’t leave children or pets unattended near any heating source.
Create an evacuation plan for your home and make sure everyone in your home knows what to do in case of a fire.
UnCovered: Tracing the Origins of Silhouettes
Before photography, if someone wanted to have their portrait made quickly and inexpensively, they might visit a silhouette artist. Cutting portraits became popular in the mid-18th century, and skilled artists using minimal materials could cut an accurate portrait in a matter of minutes. They represented a cheap but effective alternative to the portrait miniature, and skilled specialist artists could cut a high-quality bust portrait, by far the most common style, in a matter of minutes, working purely by eye. (1)
The term silhouette comes from Étienne de Silhouette, a French minister who enacted severe economic demands on the French people during the Seven Years’ War to curb the deficit and strengthen the nation’s finances. His name became synonymous with anything viewed as cheap and austere, and people who could not afford more expensive painted portraiture turned to the cheap paper cutouts that we now know as silhouettes. Prior to this, silhouettes were referred to as profiles or shades. The invention of the camera heralded the end of the popularity of these portraits.
This unidentified profile of a man in a gilded frame was purchased by the Park Authority in 1989 from an antique store. It is a hollow-cut silhouette, meaning the positive image was traced and cut away from a light-colored paper, leaving the negative outline behind.
MEET THE ARTIST: NOBUE YAMABAYASHI
Work on Display and for Sale at the Artisans United Gallery
“Origami” literally translates to the “folded paper” in the Japanese language. I was surprised at the amazed reaction of my American friends when I casually folded a paper frog at a restaurant table. For me, a Japanese citizen, origami seems second nature since children in Japan are taught this craft from elementary school and it becomes automatic like braiding one’s hair.
In October 2021, I become a member at Artisans United as I realized that I could create miniature origami shapes into earrings and other unique ornamental pieces. Japan is well known for its paper creations, and history shows references in poetry to butterfly origami as far back as 1680. Japanese culture has embraced origami as a time-honored art and many of the paper creatures are symbolic. One of the most famous creatures is the paper crane (tsuru). The paper crane symbolizes honor, good fortune, happiness and longevity. I choose to feature the crane in my origami jewelry (see picture) because of the many positive qualities it represents.
Each crane I fold begins with a square piece of origami paper sized 3 cm x 3 cm (approximately 1 inch x 1 inch). I carefully and painstakingly fold the paper 22 times to create a miniature crane. I apply a clear glaze and attach the earring hooks to create a delicate hanging earring. It is my hope that my customers will appreciate not only the craftsmanship but also the symbolism the crane has in Japanese culture.
Prepare for Colder Weather and Save on Your Energy Bill
Now is the perfect time to prepare your home or business for the colder weather. To help you get started, Virginia Energy Sense has rounded up some wintertime energy saving tips and tricks to help you stay warm while saving you money on your energy bill.
Make Use of Your Window Coverings
During the winter, open your window curtains or shades during the day to let in natural light and help keep your space warm and comfortable. At night, be sure to close the curtains or shades to keep warm air and heat inside and reduce the chill from cold windows.
Turn On Your Ceiling Fans
Ceiling fans circulate air and are great for making rooms feel more comfortable. During colder months, make sure your fans are set to rotate in a clockwise motion by using the switch on the fan motor to adjust spin direction. The clockwise rotation helps direct warm air away from the ceiling and down into the room. Just remember to turn off your ceiling fan when no one is around!
Replace Your Air Filters
Dirty air filters restrict air flow and force your heating and cooling systems to work harder. Be sure to check your air filters often, and replace them monthly or as needed to keep your systems running smoothly and efficiently. Also consider having your heating and cooling systems serviced by an HVAC technician once a year to keep them in top shape.
The Golden Years
Happier Holidays for Your Senior
Navigating the holiday season with an older loved one can be emotional and stressful for family members. Here are a few tips from professionals that will help you support older adults – without overextending yourself.
- Include your family member in event and/or meal planning. From choosing the meal courses to picking out linens, involve your older loved ones, especially if they are able to cook.
- Make some of their favorite meals or treats. This makes them feel special, shows you care and may help with memory challenges.
- Help them primp. Treat your loved one to a “spa day”, professionally or at home. - Look at photo albums. Spend time looking at photos of holidays past. It may be a healthy way to release normal feelings.
- Guide a “life review”. Ask questions that evoke thoughts and feelings like “What is your favorite piece of music?” or “What is the most satisfying thing in your life?”.
- Revive old family traditions. This is a great way to honor the past in a joyful way. For example, watch holiday movies or take a drive to see the holiday lights.
- Keep your loved one involved. Include them in the spirit of the season by engaging them and having them participate. Have them be included in whatever way they are capable.
- Enjoy the moment! While you may worry about your loved one’s age, declining health or memory loss, this is a perfect time to just enjoy what is, right now.
Annandale's Kona Ice Now at Springfield Mall
Kona Ice of Annandale & Burke, owned by a great corporate citizen and friend to Annandale Trung Dinh, has ended their main season but have opened up a Kona Ice Kiosk inside Springfield Town Center (6500 Springfield Mall, Springfield, VA) for a three months pop-up though the end of January, 2023. If you are a Kona Ice fan or enjoy premium flavors (they mix their own flavors and use cane sugar) shaved ice / snow cones. Visit them during your holiday shopping on the first floor between Target and Starbucks in front of Forever21.
The Garden Path
Front Yard Landscaping Ideas for Fall
The days are getting shorter, the kids are back in school, and there’s a crispness in the air. It’s time to give your Alexandria, VA, front yard a boost to welcome your neighbors and upgrade your curb appeal. Did you know that an attractive front yard improves your property’s value? According to HomeLight.com, landscaping can increase your property’s value between five to 15%.
A beautiful front yard also invites your neighbors and friends to your home. And you can look forward to coming home when you’re greeted with a symmetrical front landscape. Finally, your neighborhood improves when homeowners pay attention to their front yard design. There’s less crime, and folks are vigilant in keeping their front yards looking beautiful.
Perennials Add Continuous Color to Your Front Yard
The architecture of your home determines the fall landscaping color scheme. Since your front door is the focal point of your front yard, you also want to consider its color and style. (You may wish to consider planting Coral Bells, Pansies, Ornamental Cabbage & Kale, Ornamental Garlic, Dwarf Ornamental Grasses, Chrysanthemums, Black Eyed Susans and Snapdragons.)
For example, if you have a red door, you want to complement it with browns, oranges, and yellows, typical fall colors. You can add a pop of blue and green to add contrast to your flowerbeds. Sedum’s blue-green leaves against crimson flower heads will accessorize your front yard seamlessly. Perennials, like Stonecrop sedums, black-eyed Susans, and ornamental grasses, give you a better ROI compared to using only annuals because they come up every year.
You can control the front yard’s continuous color by planting a mixture of perennials that bloom from spring to fall. Many perennials and bulbs reproduce yearly, making your fall planting look fuller within two to three years.
VIEW ON NATURE: Will You Walk Into My Parlour?
Venomous Southern Black Widow Spider w/ telltale red hourglass on underbelly
(males are brown/ grey, smaller, no red hourglass marking & harmless)
They are the only venomous (poisonous) spider in Virginia. (1)
As a Nature lover, I’ve got a confession…spiders (and only spiders) give me the creeps. My instinct is unfounded given there are only 60 species of spiders found in Virginia, of which only two (3%) are considered menacing -- the poisonous black widow and the rare brown recluse spider whose venomous bite only sometimes requires medical attention. Even though the other 97% of spider species in Virginia are considered relatively harmless to humans and ecologically very beneficial, I can’t explain my aversion to the 8-legged critters.
Virginia’s largest spider families fall into several groups including jumping, orb weaver, cobweb, wolf, funnel-web spiders and grass spiders. Hands down, spiders employ the most diverse hunting methods of any creature in Virginia. For example, consider the common yellow garden spider, an orb-weaver also known as the ‘writing spider’ due to its trademark vertical zig-zag pattern of their beautiful webs. The spider rests in the hub of its web feeling for vibrations. After prey become entangled in the silken web and struggle to exhaustion, the spider pulls on the radii of its web to ‘feel’ where the prey is located before being wrapped in silk, envenomated, and eaten.
Next, let’s consider the goldenrod crab spider which uses a strand of silk as a safety line that they swing down with to catch prey. The line also keeps the spider from falling, and is used to climb back up to safety.
PARKING REIMAGINED INITIATIVE
"The County is reducing the ability to use cars without reducing the need to do so."
As it stands now, this will not work for Annandale Residents
Overflow parking on residential streets is epidemic in Annandale.
County staff from both the Land Development Services and the Department of Planning and Development have been asked by the Board of Supervisors to review Article 6 of the Zoning Ordinance (ZO), which sets requirements for off-street parking and loading.
County staff is currently working on a White Paper concerning proposed changes to the minimum parking requirements (MPRs) for new and renovated developments. This White Paper should be available on the Parking Reimagined website this fall at: https://www.fairfaxcounty.gov/planning-development/zoning-ordinance/parking-reimagined. County staff is expecting to be presenting their proposed parking amendment to the Zoning Ordinance to the Planning Commission and the Board of Supervisors in early 2023.
Dr. Donald Shoup, a professor at the University of California at Los Angeles (UCLA) was the first to come up with the theory of reducing minimum parking requirements (MPRs). His theory was first applied in the low-income areas of Los Angeles, where MPRs were preventing the building of adequate low-income housing. Los Angeles implemented his reductions in MPRs and were able to build more low-income housing along transportation routes. Since that time, other localities have started to reduce the minimum parking requirements in their areas. This reduction in MPRs has been especially helpful in areas with well-established mass transportation and has allowed the introduction of additional green spaces and trees in areas which had previously been large, impervious parking lots.
Green spaces and trees are important to our area for numerous reasons, including:
¨ Assisting in managing storm water runoff.
¨ Assisting in improving air and water quality.
¨ Assisting in mitigating heat islands.
¨ Assisting in improving the quality of life for residents.
The ENDEAVOR News Magazine is the Chamber's quarterly online publication and the must read magazine in Annandale. Acquaint yourself with local businesses, community history, revitalization efforts, and issues that concern Annandale: The Crossroads of Northern Virginia TM.
Annandale REAL ESTATE
Are More Changes Coming in Our World?
I set out to write an article just about the Real Estate Market but so much else is happening and it is all interrelated.
Commencing with the start of summer we saw a slow down in the market for resales in many areas of our county. This is typical as the hot spring market usually starts in January, accelerates and this year became a very strong Seller’s market. Why? There is still a pent-up demand for housing, both sales
and rentals with a low inventory. Many buyers with school age children were frustrated at not becoming the accepted bid in their preferred school districts. So, successful bidding entailed waiving home inspections, appraisals, offering free rent backs to sellers, as well as an above-list price.
However, then came the slow-down, which only became more pronounced as summer ended and we moved into fall. After the heyday of the spring market, buyers were now taking more time to pull the trigger on an offer, making lower bids, including requiring a home inspection. This all pointed to a buyer’s market which is continuing today. Many listings are now showing price reductions, others are reappearing back on the market, or leaving the market. But, there is still a high demand with a shortage of inventory.
UnCovered: A Virginia Civil Rights Hero
From: Sen. Mark Warner
Moton High School (on the left, for black students)
Farmville High School (for white students) (4)
This Year marks the 68th anniversary of Brown v. Board of Education – the seminal case that ended institutionalized school segregation in America. But did you know that this case partially came from a Virginia native?
Prior to Brown v. Board, during the Jim Crow era, many Virginia schools remained segregated, including the R.R. Moton High School in Prince Edward County, where sixteen-year-old Barbara Johns was a student. After experiencing many years of substandard school conditions, (plywood and tar paper structures that lacked heating and plumbing) she felt called to action against the injustice of segregation. On April 23, 1951, she led her classmates in a walkout to draw attention to the issue.
The strike attracted local and national attention, and two lawyers from the NAACP filed a lawsuit against the school district as a result. This case would eventually go on to be filed jointly with four other cases and argued in front of the Supreme Court under the name Brown v. Board of Education. I’m guessing you know the rest from here – the Court ruled that there was no legal basis for “separate but equal” and school segregation was officially outlawed.
Meet the Artisan: Susan Yindra, Ceramicist
After practicing dental hygiene for more than thirty years, I thought about retiring and wanted to find an artistic outlet that would be challenging and fun. Over the years, I had collected glass bottles, paperweights, and stained glass. So I thought it might be fun to try and signed up for a beginner level stained glass class. In class, I learned how to score glass, work with a soldering iron, solder and copper foil to create sun catchers and glass panels. I especially liked working with the different glass colors and textures. After a year or so, I progressed to making three dimensional pieces such as jewelry boxes and Tiffany style lamp shades. I especially enjoyed designing lamp shades for small table lamps and gave them as gifts to family at Christmas. I continued working with stained glass, fused glass and even glass blowing for several years, but when my favorite instructor retired I decided to make a change.
With extra time on my hands, I began searching for a creative hobby to replace stained glass. In the 80's, I had enrolled in a beginner pottery class. I was introduced to hand building and using a coil technique I created a large bowl. My memories of the fun I had working with clay inspired me to look for another beginner pottery class. I discovered that Audrey Moore Rec Center offered pottery classes and I signed up for a level one wheel class. In class, I learned the basics of throwing pots on the wheel, starting with the preparation of the clay or wedging and moving on to centering the clay on the wheel. Centering clay is one of the greatest challenges for a beginning potter but it is an important step in producing a pot with uniform wall thickness. Once the clay is centered, you open the pot outward to achieve the desired diameter. Using both hands and the wheel speed, you begin raising the walls to the height you want. Learning to make a basic cylinder, allows even a novice potter to create small pots and enjoy a sense of accomplishment.
VIEW ON NATURE: After the Downpour
There’s nothing like a walk in the forest after a long rain to refresh your mind and soul. Early in the pandemic I shared in Endeavor the meditative, restorable feeling of walking in the forest popularized in Japan as shinrin-yoku (forest bathing), and by famous naturalists David Thoreau and John Muir (see Wash Your Mind, 2020).
Walking along a rain-soaked trail stimulates the senses. The crisp air, fresh forest scent, dappling sunlight through the overhead canopy, and muted bird songs speak to me. The forest comes alive after a downpour. All the plants and wildflowers perk up with little dapples of yellow, pink and blue near and far. Enveloped below a thick tree canopy formed mostly by blends of red, white and chestnut oaks, hickory, maples, and ash, I am one with the forest.
And as I quietly pad up the spongy, verdant mossy trail I spy life stirring from storm sanctuary beds. A whitetail deer browsing, a chipmunk foraging seeds, an upside down squirrel eating a mushroom, and a curious ruby-throated hummingbird hovering eye-eye merely three feet away! A shiny box turtle seeking earthworms, a camouflaged toad cocking its head at a ladybug, a packrat grooming, a sleek ribbon of a black and pink ring-necked snake sunning, and numerous forest birds and butterflies flitted about. Wonderful butterflies– forest cloak, painted lady, white cabbage, silver spotted skipper – come in view and to mind. Even the notorious – the stinging buck moth caterpillar and gorgeous cyanide-emitting cherry millipede in all its glory of variegated papaya and yellow joints in its black segmented body -- actively ply the woodland floor for food and mates.
The Fairfax Medical Reserve Corps
MRC Volunteers Support the Daily Operations of the Fairfax County Health Department
The COVID-19 pandemic solidified just how important Fairfax Medical Reserve Corps (MRC) volunteers are to local public health when they stepped-up to provide testing, vaccines, and vital health and safety information. The residents of Fairfax County owe them a debt of gratitude.
MRC volunteers with the Fairfax County CareVan at a vaccine event
Since February of 2020, over 1,400 MRC members volunteered more than 65,000 hours at vaccination clinics and testing events, and assisting with outreach, isolation and quarantine efforts, logistical support, and so much more.
It was their tireless work during the COVID-19 pandemic that earned the Fairfax MRC program the Volunteer Fairfax award for Improving Quality of Life in Fairfax. "The impact of the Fairfax MRC is best represented by the countless lives that volunteers have positively impacted over the past two years and their hard work that continues to keep our friends, family, and neighbors healthy and safe!" wrote Paula Rosca, Fairfax MRC Program Coordinator.
"The most poignant moment as a volunteer came after I had been vaccinating for several months, first at the Herndon District Office, then at the Government Center and finally at Inova Stonebridge. I was on duty at Stonebridge when the announcement came out that teenagers could be vaccinated. The very next day, one mother came in with her three teenagers in tow. I took the mother and we distributed the kids out to nearby tables. I gave her the usual counseling, then completed the injection. As I was filling out her vaccination card, I commended her on bringing in her three teens. She looked at me and said simply, 'They lost their father to Covid last year.' We both has tears in our eyes. As I handed her the completed card, I felt a great sense of purpose as to why I had joined MRC," Phil Beauchene, Vaccinator, MRC.
Route 236/Little River Turnpike Plan HORRIFIC for the Residents and Merchants of Annandale
The proposed plan to expand Little River Turnpike has one and only one goal, to accommodate more and more cross county commuter traffic and move it through the LIttle River corridor as quickly and as unencumbered as possible. There is NO consideration shown for the residents and businesses of Annandale. This proposal will greatly hinder the people of Annandale while killing off easy access to Annandale merchants.
Just imagine driving from Fairfax to Annandale on your way home. You wish to take a left on Hummer Road or to access roadways to Falls Church? Under this new plan, you will be driving many more minutes while all but circumnavigating the western banks of Annandale traveling through one traffic circle to another. THIS PROPOSAL IS NUTS and we can only hope that the leadership in Mason District will stand up and fight for the rights of our citizens.
Many NO left turns off of Little River will be blocked causing more inconvenience and time burden to our residents. Other detour type routes and traffic circles are proposed taking you further from your destination every single day. Yet, the commuter traffic will race through our community unfettered while eliminating the much needed access roads that provide easy entrance and inter-parcel access to the merchants on which you depend.
These access roads also provide a calmer direct route for the local residents keeping them off Little River. Without them, we will be forced to join what will become a Freeway. Designers of this plan intentionally market a massive misdirect by calling the expanded Little River a Boulevard. Sounds nice but this is not Paris. Have no doubt, this will be a Freeway and one that is far harder for pedestrians to cross no matter how many cross walks are striped.
The breadth of Little River does not allow anyone to cross all lanes in one go. Waiting on the median for another round of changing lights is necessary and dangerous. Pedestrian accessibility in Annandale is all but non existent right now. The most dangerous spots have always been when attempting to cross both Columbia Pike and Little River. Recently we have also experienced such distracted and high volume driving that fatalities have occurred on sidewalks. The next victim, and there will be more, could be you! This new road plan does not improve pedestrian accessibility although there are lofty claims that it is one of the goals. If in fact that is more than lip service, that goal deserves a grade of (F) Failure.
As to Roundabouts the research shows serious concerns about safety, so much so that in England where Roundabouts have existed in plenty for more than 100 years, they are now disappearing because of serious safety concerns.
They are not as safe as traditional crossings for either pedestrians or bicyclists and they are not meant for higher speed roadways since entry speeds on each leg of the intersection should not exceed 15-18 mph. Roundabouts are also not designed for multilane road intersections which all of the roadways displayed for inclusion in this proposal are multilane. Raises even more questions about creating safe road conditions.
Ten years ago when a less dramatic version of this plan was first proposed, a compromise was reached to create an inner loop for the residents of Annandale so we would be able to avoid much of the commuter traffic and easily access our neighborhoods and merchants. That Inner-Annandale Loop has been abandoned. Do not be deceived, there is NOTHING in this plan that will benefit the people of Annandale.
Annandale Road to Backlick
We will forever be going around in circles. Have you seen the shockingly ugly Roundabout on Ravensworth Road that VDOT installed? If they can not install even one attractive “roundabout” what horror awaits with these circles littering every roadway?
DOT Extends Route 236/Little River Turnpike STARS Study Comment Period
By public request, the Virginia Department of Transportation (VDOT) is extending the comment period for the Route 236/Little River Turnpike STARS Study from May 31 through Sunday, June 12, 2022. This STARS (Strategically Targeted Affordable Roadway Solutions) Study is assessing potential cost-effective measures to improve safety and reduce congestion during morning and evening peak periods for approximately four miles of Route 236/Little River Turnpike, between I-495 in Annandale and I-395 in Alexandria. For more information, and to access the survey in English, Korean, and Spanish, visit www.virginiadot.org/projects/northernvirginia/route236stars.asp Make certain to add a note in the comment area that neither proposal is acceptable!
For more photos of other intersections, go to the VDOT Northern Virginia page or the Route 236 STARS Study.
GREEN SPRING GARDENS
FALL & WINTER GARDEN PROGRAMS
FOR ADULTS AND FAMILIES
Gardening, Fine Art, Fitness and Special Request Programs are scheduled year round. Register online at www.fairfaxcounty.gov/parks/parktakes or call Green Spring Gardens at 703-642-5173.
SCHEDULE OF SUMMER PROGRAMS
HISTORIC GREEN SPRING TEA PROGRAMS
A traditional English afternoon tea served in the 1784 Historic House follows each program. Full tea includes finger sandwiches,pastries, and scone with cream and jam. Specially prepared tea boxes to go are also available with advance purchase.
Programs are by reservation only. Call Historic Green Spring at (703) 941-7987.
SUMMER TEA SCHEDULE
The Bomb that Did Not Burst in Air
As Americans battled the British in the War of 1812, militiamen stationed near what is now Fort Belvoir caught a lucky break when one bomb did not perform as expected.
This 13-inch mortar shell was found at the US Army Engineer Research and Development Laboratories Pontoon Basin at Fort Belvoir in October 1959. Sometime between September 3 and 5 of 1814, the Royal Navy bomb vessel Aetna or Meteor likely fired this 194-pound bomb at an American gun battery that had been erected at a small building known as the White House, located at the Belvoir manor ruins.
This hollow bomb was filled with 10 to 15 pounds of gunpowder and plugged with a fuse. The fuse should have burned for 27 seconds before the bomb exploded, projecting two-inch-thick shrapnel at its target. Fortunately for the Americans at Belvoir, this bomb did not burst. The diffused bomb is now preserved with many other artifacts associated with the British attack in September of 1814.
Just a month earlier, Royal Navy commander Vice Admiral Sir Alexander Cochrane had begun assembling a large task force off the Maryland coast and assigned Rear Admiral George Cockburn to strike Washington in an effort to demoralize Americans and suppress local resistance. Admiral Cockburn ordered Captain James Gordon’s squadron to sail up the Potomac to Washington to destroy fortifications along the river. On August 24, British soldiers and marines defeated Americans at Bladensburg, Maryland. They entered Washington that evening and set fire to the Presidential Mansion, the U.S. Capitol, and other government buildings. The British left Washington the next day and occupied Alexandria.
Is Your Home in Need of a Makeover?
Exterior Improvements include Roofing & Siding
The Chamber would like to introduce Waris Mojaddidi and WISA Solutions, his family run business to the Annandale Community. Waris was born and raised in Springfield attending West Springfield High School. He went onto Coastal Carolina University playing Division 1 Soccer and graduating with a Business Management Degree in 2010. A year later he and his father drew together a business plan and opened WISA Solutions.
WISA is a full service home improvement company that specializes in mid to major interior design build renovations (kitchens, bathrooms, basements, additions) along with roof, siding and gutter replacement. They can make your home renovations easier by hiring one contractor to take care of your many needs.
Need more space? Have your basement renovated into a home theatre, home office, playroom, and study space.
Need a new roof? WISA can provide an accurate view of your roof with drone technology and then show you a range of roofing materials including the longest wearing materials on the market today.
Want to reduce your home insurance premiums? Replacing your roof, especially before the harsh winds and heavy winter storms, may be the single best home investment you can make.