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Morning Notes

ACT For Alexandria CEO wins nonprofit leadership award — “As nonprofit leaders in Greater Washington, Mike Di Marco, Kahina Haynes, and Heather Peeler are invested in improving and advancing their organizations–and themselves. This year, we’re excited to announce them as our fourth annual David Bradt Nonprofit Leadership Awardees. (They) will each receive up to $15,000 to attend an intensive executive training program of their choice.” [The Community Foundation]

City recommends monitoring for COVID-19 symptoms regardless of vaccination status — “Although the vast majority of new COVID-19 cases are among unvaccinated people, those who are fully vaccinated can still contract COVID-19 and are more likely to experience mild illness. Anyone experiencing the following symptoms should get tested: fever or chills; cough; shortness of breath or difficulty breathing; fatigue; muscle or body aches; headache; new loss of taste or smell; sore throat; congestion or runny nose; nausea or vomiting; or diarrhea. Protect yourself and others by getting vaccinated. Find your shot online today.” [City of Alexandria]

ALIVE! gets $100K Safeway grant — “@Safeway Foundation awarded ALIVE! a $100,000 grant to help connect individuals in Alexandria, VA with federal meal programs this summer. The grant is part of Safeway Nourishing Neighbors Community Relief Initiative to fight food insecurity.” [Twitter]

Today’s weather — “Intervals of clouds and sunshine (during the day). High near 85F. Winds N at 5 to 10 mph… Partly cloudy (in the evening). Low near 65F. Winds WNW at 5 to 10 mph.” [Weather.com]

New job: $200 a day tour guide — “Spirited Tours LLC provides day-long winery and brewery tours to D.C. residents and guests who’d like to explore Virginia’s countryside. Seeking a responsible, punctual, and social tour guide/driver to help with winery and brewery tours on weekends. Must be comfortable driving large groups (driving minivan or 15 passenger van).” [Indeed]

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ACT for Alexandria raised $2.5 million for more than 156 local nonprofits during its 11th annual Spring2ACTion fundraiser — breaking the $2.45 million record set last year.

As of Thursday morning, 8,250 donors raised $2,509,133 for 156 nonprofits in Alexandria for the biggest one-day fundraiser in Alexandria. The final numbers are currently being tallied, and stragglers will be allowed to donate through the weekend.

“The Alexandria community has done it again,” ACT President and CEO Heather Peeler told ALXnow. “It’s remarkable and I can hardly even put words to just how much appreciation I have for the enormous generosity of this community.”

The top three recipients were RunningBrooke with $165,053.60, followed by Casa Chirilagua with $106,247.34 and Friends of Guest House with $100,715.

“What we achieve is only possible because there are 156 nonprofits who are reaching out to their board members and their constituents and getting their friends involved,” Peeler said. “We had over 70 local businesses participating who were engaging their customers and their employees. It was an all-hands-on-deck effort across the community.

Spring2ACTion has raised million for local nonprofits since its founding 11 years ago. All donations are tax deductible and irrevocable.

The Del Ray Business Association also raised $18,466.92 from 127 donors, soundly beating the Old Town Business Association in its fundraising challenge. OTBA raised $16,272 from seven donors.

Peeler is thankful of her staff of six, especially Brandi Yee, ACT for Alexandria’s chief program officer.

“Brandi has been with Spring2ACTion from the beginning, and this would not be possible if it weren’t for her,” Peeler said. “She has tremendous relationships with the nonprofit community and donors, and has so much insight in terms of what to do and how to make it happen.”

Spring2ACTion Top 10:

  1. RunningBrooke raised $165,053.60 from 198 donors
  2. Casa Chirilagua raised $106,247.34 from 369 donors
  3. Friends of Guest House raised $100,715 from 170 donors
  4. ALIVE! raised $98,649.24 from 471 donors
  5. Carpenter’s Shelter raised $73,050 from 300 donors
  6. Space of Her Own, Inc. (SOHO) raised $62,731.38 from 174 donors
  7. King Street Cats raised $62,465 from 495 donors
  8. Together We Bake raised $60,378 from 193 donors
  9. Center for Alexandria’s Children raised $51,040 from 134 donors
  10. Alexandria Tutoring Consortium raised $49,805 from 180 donors

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The biggest one-day fundraiser in Alexandria is here. Spring2ACTion started this morning and donors have until midnight to contribute to more than 150 nonprofits in the city.

Last year’s event raised $2.45 million from 8,453 donors, and the goal has been raised to $2.5 million. This year, event organizer ACT for Alexandria is looking for 10,000 donors.

Last year’s top recipients were:

Spring2ACTion has also gained the attention of 36 businesses in the the Del Ray Business Association and Old Town Business Association, which are competing to outraise each other.

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Morning Notes

Spring2ACTion starts early giving — “Alexandria’s official Day of Giving is April 28, but early giving is open and residents are generously donating to more than 100 local nonprofit organizations.” [Alexandria Living]

Citizen group advicates to return to ward representation — “For most of its history since the early 1800s, the City of Alexandria had neighborhood-based  representation on its city council. Now, a bipartisan coalition of residents is calling for a return to that type of government, arguing that ward representation would foster better service and accountability to residents.” [Alexandria Living]

Mister Kleen donates hand sanitizer dispensers to Neighborhood Health –“Mister Kleen Maintenance Company, Inc. is giving back to the community with a donation of more than 100 automatic hand sanitizer dispensers with stands to Neighborhood Health, a local nonprofit community health center that serves more than 42,000 patients in clinics across Alexandria, Arlington, and Fairfax County.” [Zebra]

Today’s weather — “Thunderstorms in the morning will give way to partly cloudy skies and gusty winds late. Storms may contain strong gusty winds. Morning high of 67F with temps falling to near 55. Winds W at 20 to 30 mph. Chance of rain 80%… Clear (in the evening). Gusty winds diminishing after midnight. Low 37F. Winds WNW at 20 to 30 mph.” [Weather.com]

New job: Bartenders — “Doyles Outpost is the newest FUN in town a uniquely designed entertainment concept featuring a mouthwatering menu, full bar, novel two level laser tag arena, the latest arcade games and the HologateTM virtual reality attraction. We are the perfect venue for your next corporate event, social gathering or birthday party.” [Indeed]

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Spring2ACTion, the biggest annual fundraiser for Alexandria nonprofits, is around the corner and organizers want to raise $2.5 million from 10,000 donors.

On April 28, donors will get a 24 hour chance to contribute to more than 150 nonprofits in the city.

Last year’s event raised $2.45 million from 8,453 donors, and the money was a lifeline during the beginning days of the pandemic.

Spring2ACTion is hosted by the foundation ACT for Alexandria, and has raised more than $12.5 million for local nonprofits since its founding 11 years ago. Last year alone, ACT for Alexandria distributed $5.7 million to support 131 Alexandria nonprofits.

“Last year was like a lifeline for our organizations,” Brandi Yee, ACT for Alexandria’s chief program officer, told ALXnow. “This is people’s livelihoods, and Spring2ACTion allowed organizations to pay salaries and help people through the pandemic. And it was used to help all these nonprofits pivot to meet the needs of their clients who are experiencing the effects of the pandemic.”

Last year’s top recipients were:

This year’s Spring2ACTion has also gained the attention of 36 businesses in the the Del Ray Business Association and Old Town Business Association, which are competing to outraise each other.

Photo via DASH/Facebook

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Morning Notes

Beyer Calls Trump ‘Super Spreader in Chief’ — “The Super-Spreader-In-Chief strikes again. From coast to coast he visits American communities spreading dangerous aversion to science and public health precautions. He brings large groups of people together under unsafe conditions in state after state, and this is what results.” [Twitter]

Halloween Weekend Events in Alexandria — “While Alexandria police are not planning to close down Lee Street for the annual Halloween party, there are lots of activities Halloween weekend.” [Alexandria Living]

ACT for Alexandria’s #ArtsALX Fundraiser Extended to Nov. 6 — “We are still fundraising to save the arts! 100% of donations will directly support artists in Alexandria. Donation portals open thru Friday, Nov. 6.” [Twitter]

Two Alexandria Restaurants Make Washingtonian’s List for Cozy Escapes — “The Yates family went above and beyond when reimagining the outdoor space at Lena’s Wood-Fired Pizza & Tap during the pandemic. The 5,200 square-foot set-up has cabanas–hung with Moroccan lanterns–for parties of ten or less; pergolas glowing with string lights; and a new beer garden ringed around a fire pit… Pick (at Del Ray’s Evening Star Cafe) between two homey outdoor areas at this Alexandria mainstay: the Front Porch, where you can sip a bourbon slush by a fire-pit table, and the new, roomy Back Yard.” [Washingtonian]

ALIVE! Hosting Food Distribution Event on Halloween — “The event will be held at two drive-through sites: the parking lots of John Adams Elementary (5651 Rayburn Ave.) and Cora Kelly Elementary (3600 Commonwealth Ave.). Residents can pick up food at either location from 8:30-10:30 a.m. or until supplies last.” [Zebra]

Animal Welfare League of Alexandria Gets Pets Displaced by Zeta — “We are so glad we were able to welcome a group of dogs and cats from @LASPCA last night. In preparation for the landfall of Hurricane Zeta, The Louisiana SCPA needed to make extra room in their shelter so they could help animals displaced by the storm.” [Twitter]

Today’s Weather — “Cloudy skies (during the day) . High 53F. Winds NNW at 10 to 20 mph. A few clouds from time to time (in the evening). Low 37F. Winds N at 5 to 10 mph.” [Weather.com]

New Job: Deputy Clerk — “The Deputy Clerk (Grade 7) is assigned operational responsibilities and ensures court’s instructions are executed and legal papers are prepared with accuracy and in accordance with appropriate policies and procedures.” [Indeed]

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With limited public performances, shuttered galleries and cancelled events, the Alexandria art scene has been hit hard this year.

On Saturday (October 24), the Alexandria Arts Alliance and ACT for Alexandria will host a virtual fundraiser for arts organizations and artists in the city.

“We knew as the weather gets colder, gathering will become more challenging,” said Alexandria Arts Alliance Board President Melinda Kernc. “There is amazing and inspirational art happening all around us, and we want Alexandria residents to experience it, even if they are staying home. These artists and arts organizations desperately need support from the community they serve so well. This entertaining, collaborative showcase provides a way to ensure the arts will emerge strong when the pandemic subsides.”

The event, which will raise funds for dozens of organizations, will be live streamed Saturday at 7 p.m. on the Alexandria Arts Alliance Facebook page. The event will include Guests will include an appearance by the mayor, a Saturday Night Live cast member and video vignettes from 23 Alexandria-based artists and arts organizations.

Additionally, Homegrown Restaurant Group (Holy Cow, Pork Barrel BBQ, The Sushi Bar, Sweet Fire Donna’s, Tequila & Taco, and Whiskey & Oyster) will donate 10% from its take-out orders that night if customers mention the event.

The following artist organizations will be featured:

  • Alexandria Choral Society
  • Alexandria Citizens Band
  • Alexandria Film Festival
  • Alexandria Harmonizers
  • Alexandria Singers
  • Alexandria Symphony Orchestra
  • Art on the Avenue
  • Arts on the Horizon
  • ArtSpire VA
  • Brave Spirits
  • Del Ray Artisans
  • Eclipse Chamber Orchestra
  • Fantastical Glass
  • Karen Fitzgerald Art
  • Lisa Schumaier
  • Local Motion Project
  • Metropolitan School of the Arts
  • MetroStage
  • QuinTango
  • The Art League
  • UpCycle Creative Reuse Center
  • Washington Metropolitan Philharmonic Association
  • Yellow Door Concert Series

Wow! Just WOW! We are so grateful for the ACT donors who have pledged $14,000 in matching funds to save #artsALX!

Posted by Alexandria Arts Alliance on Wednesday, October 21, 2020

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Alexandria residents feeling the financial impact of the pandemic could be eligible to get $100 to $400 in grocery store gift cards as part of a new program with the city and ACT for Alexandria.

Residents who have not received financial help from the government will be prioritized for the ALX Cares Grocery Gift Card Program, which runs through December or until the funds run out.

“The City has continued to address ongoing food insecurity caused by impacts of COVID-19 by designating an additional $1.53 million in funding from the Coronavirus Aid Relief for Economic Security (CARES) Act to expand and extend food assistance programs,” according to ACT for Alexandria. “An allocation of $950,000 is designated for the ALX Cares Grocery Gift Card Program and $580,000 for ALIVE! to continue large-scale food distributions and pantry support.”

To be eligible, residents must provide documentation of their loss of income, receive 50% area median income ($63,000 for a family of four and $44,100 for an individual) and live in the 22206, 22301, 22302, 22304, 22305, 22311, 22312 or 22314 ZIP codes.

Up to 1,500 gift cards are planned to be given away per month.

ACT for Alexandria’s ACT Now COVID-19 Response Fund has also raised more than $1 million, and $914,000 has been given in grant funding to other city nonprofits.

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ACT for Alexandria has broken fundraising records this year, and next month will celebrate its achievements with its first-ever virtual fall fundraiser.

“There is a lot to celebrate,” Heather Peeler, the CEO of ACT for Alexandria, told ALXnow. “We had our best-ever Spring2ACTion, we raised more than $1 million for the ACT Now Fund, and gave most of it away to 80 organizations, we are partnering with the city on a grocery gift card distribution program and launched a fund to support city employees on the front lines facing financial hardship.”

The Fall Salud and Virtual Celebration will be held for an hour on Wednesday, September 23, from 7 to 8 p.m., and includes performances from local artists and musicians.

The event is still being planned, and all funds will go to ACT for Alexandria.

“Throughout the year, our partners and supports have been extraordinary with the support and care they have shown for our community,” Peeler said. “This is an opportunity to come together and celebrate what we’ve collectively achieved in supporting Alexandrians throughout the pandemic.”

Join ACT for Alexandria for it's first virtual fundraiser on Wednesday, September 23! From the comfort of your own home,…

Posted by ACT for Alexandria on Monday, August 10, 2020

Image via ACT for Alexandria/Facebook

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ACT for Alexandria’s ACT Now COVID-19 Response Fund has now raised more than $1 million, and $910,000 has been given in grant funding to other city nonprofits.

ACT for Alexandria Executive Director Heather Peeler says that even though COVID-19 numbers are going down, the community needs are still great. The nonprofit has paused its grant request process for the month of June while it maps out its fundraising strategy for the rest of the year.

“The needs of community members are still substantial,” Peeler said. “All of our community partners are getting calls from constituents who need assistance. The health and economic impacts of the pandemic are still with us, even though I think everybody’s really geared up to get back to work. There are still many community members who are disproportionately affected and we need to continue to support them as they navigate this crisis.”

Peeler and her staff of four employees and two interns also organized and managed the Spring2ACTion fundraiser on April 15, which broke the city’s one-day giving record by raising $2.45 million for Alexandria nonprofits.

Now ACT for Alexandria is crafting a racial equity statement to guide its future priorities, and Peeler and her staff are organizing racial equity workshops. Peeler said that there is currently a waiting list of 100 people who want to attend in June and July.

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