Former Alexandria City Councilman Willie Bailey has done it again. Over the weekend, Bailey and a large collection of supporting organizations, groups and volunteers gave out more than 800 backpacks full of school supplies and thousands of books, with ice cream on the side.
Bailey, a deputy fire chief for the Fairfax County Fire and Rescue Department, was raised in Alexandria and says he’s just paying it forward.
“I’m just making sure these kids are able to succeed and do good and give back to society when they get old,” Bailey told ALXnow. “And that they remember what someone once did for them. That’s all.”
The distributions took place at Charles Houston Recreation Center on Saturday and outside T.C. Williams High School on Sunday.
Bailey was joined by representatives from the Alexandria Police and Fire Departments, Alexandria Redevelopment and Housing Authority, the Sheriff’s office and the Departmental Progressive Club. The Alexandria nonprofit InspireLit was also on-hand and provided thousands of books for kids to take home.
ARHA representative Daynelle Diaz said that the supplies will have a major impact.
“We’ve had a lot of families that have either lost work or haven’t been able to work,” she said. “With no money coming in, this is a big relief, because even though kids are going to be online for school, they’re still going to need supplies. This is a great weight off their shoulders.”
City Councilman Canek Aguirre volunteered at the event and praised Bailey.
“My hat goes off to Willie Bailey,” he said. “Just because of the pandemic, and he doesn’t stop and he’s here to help fill an important need. We’re greatly appreciative to him for everything that he does for the city.”
Bailey also said that his annual coat drive is still happening this fall.
— Alexandria Sheriff (@AlexVASheriff) August 22, 2020
The Alexandria Tutoring Consortium has launched a fundraising campaign to continue a virtual program that teaches young children how to read.
The 24-year-old nonprofit needs $22,000 to fund a leveled reading program that started after its personalized literacy tutoring program was shifted online after the pandemic hit the city in March. So far, Burke and Herbert Bank donated $1,000 to kick things off, and donations can be made on the ATC website.
“This has been a trying time,” said ATC Board Chair Yvonne Folkerts, who is also a former chair of the Alexandria School Board. “Yet despite the challenges, our tutors remained dedicated, the parents supported our virtual needs, our staff stayed true to our mission, and the students have benefitted.”
ATC, which uses a University of Virginia curriculum, was tutoring 128 students in its “Book Buddies” program last March. It was able to connect with 102 of those students when the virtual program started in late April. Now, the nonprofit estimates that 84% of those kindergarten and first graders will be reading on grade level.
With the entire school system going virtual this fall, the leveled readers will replace books that are kept in the classroom.
“Our staff has decided leveled readers are the best choice for a virtual program and therefore we intend to find the resources to provide this literacy tool for these young readers,” Folkerts said.
Photo via ATC/Facebook
Alexandria Man Wins $100,000 in Virginia Lottery — “Darrar, who used to be a small business owner, bought the winning ticket at Global Food, 1476 North Beauregard Street in Alexandria for the July 28 drawing. He plans on saving his winnings.” [Patch]
COVID-19 Cases Increase by 16 — “Positive tests up 16 to 3,146 in the City 7-day Positivity Rate up to 5.8% 3 new hospitalizations Still safer at home, wash hands, wear masks and support our essential workers.” [Twitter]
Beyer Refutes Trump Claim on Coronavirus Testing — “The United States has a quarter of the world’s cases and a fifth of its deaths with only 4% of its population. That isn’t because of testing — which STILL isn’t good enough — it’s because President Donald “it will disappear soon” Trump ignored the scientists and let it spread.” [Twitter]
Environmental Council of Alexandria Writes School Board Asking to Save 150-Year-old Tree — “As with the Potomac Yard Metro Station which destroyed dozens of mature trees in a wetland despite the availability of alternative sites, the City cannot continue to tell citizens that they are too late to preserve tree canopy and open space. The City should be preserving our tree canopy without requiring citizens to review architect’s drawings before learning of destruction of trees and open space. How is the City to be taken seriously about its claim to be an ‘Eco City’ when it continually elevates construction convenience over trees and open space? It’s never too late to do the right thing.”
Polk and Ramsay Students Invited to Pick a Free Book Today — “Before selecting a book, children will be given a mask and gloves for their well-being.” [Zebra]
Today’s Weather — Showers in the morning, then partly cloudy in the afternoon. High 83F, low 64F. Winds N at 5 to 10 mph. Chance of rain 40%. [Weather.com]
New Job: Digital Audience Manager — “The Digital Audience Manager leads the National Military Family Association’s micro-audiences pivoting between brand awareness initiatives, organizational campaigns, programmatic promotion, and press outreach and response.” [Indeed]
Bookstore Operator Denies Raiding Little Free Libraries for Stock — “A Nextdoor site dedicated to Del Ray in Alexandria has been roiled by allegations that the operator of a nonprofit used bookstore slated to open next week in Alexandria was visiting Little Free Libraries to obtain stock for his shop.” [Washingtonian]
City Extends Public Feedback Deadline on Accessory Dwelling Units — “The public is invited to watch the City’s latest presentation on ADUs and provide feedback through Aug 19 here. There will be a virtual open house on ADUs scheduled before the Planning Commission and City Counsel hearings this fall.” [Alexandria Living]
Tammy Mann Chosen as Business Leader of the Year by Chamber of Commerce — “The Chamber ALX is thrilled to announce that Dr. Tammy Mann, President & CEO of The Campagna Center, has been selected as the 2020 Business Leader of the Year. She will be honored at the annual Best in Business Awards, presented by Burke & Herbert Bank, on October 1, 2020.” [Alexandria Chamber]
Alexandrian Named 15th Chief of Navy Reserve — “Vice Adm. John B. Mustin relieved Vice Adm. Luke M. McCollum as Chief of Navy Reserve and Commander, Navy Reserve Force, during a change of command ceremony at the Washington Navy Yard, Aug. 7.” [Zebra]
Animal Welfare League Saves Raccoon — “We’re so glad some Alexandria workers spotted this raccoon on top of their truck and waited until our Animal Services Officers arrived so he could be safely returned to the wild. Officer Stanback was able to safely remove the little raccoon and release him after confirming that he hadn’t sustained any injuries.” [Facebook]
Torpedo Factory Hosting Virtual Conversation With Artist — “The events and public space activation team in the Office of the Arts is working with local artist Melanie Kehoss for a mini exhibition in Torpedo Factory Art Center.” [Facebook]
Today’s Weather — “Thunderstorms likely in the morning. Then a chance of scattered thunderstorms in the afternoon. High 82F. Winds ENE at 5 to 10 mph. Chance of rain 80%. Locally heavy rainfall possible.” [Weather.com]
New Job: Construction Manager — “The Construction Manager is directly responsible for managing the safe, efficient and quality production of a team of Outdoor Construction Crews, equipment, materials and workmanship for small and large scale residential projects.” [Indeed.com]
Beyer Says Acting Homeland Security Chief Should Resign — “Ordering the occupation of US cities, seeking the escalation of violence, and intentionally risking American lives over peaceful protests and graffiti is unfathomable and unacceptable. Acting Secretary Wolf must resign immediately or be fired.” [Twitter]
Del Ray Used Book Store to Open in August — “Piles and boxes of thousands of donated books crowd Donald Alexander’s house as he prepares to turn his vision for a used bookstore in Del Ray into reality.” [Alexandria Living]
Police Report Carjacking on Edsall Road — “The Alexandria Police Department is investigating a carjacking in the 6000 block of Edsall Road. There were no injuries. Expect police activity in the area.” [Twitter]
ACPS Staff Discussion on Reopening Today at 12:30 p.m. — “In order to be able to hear voices from across every school during the Reopening Community Chats, ACPS has asked for representation from various staff groups across the school division to serve as conduits for feedback and questions from their school, department, office or facility.” [ACPS]
Food Drive at Trinity UMC Wednesday — “Thank you to all who have and are continuing to contribute to the food drive for Rising Hope United Methodist Church, which takes place each Wednesday from 4:00 – 7:00 p.m. at Trinity United Methodist Church.” [Rising Hope UMC]
Metro Expanding Operations in Mid-August — “Metro will add more buses, more trains, and more hours of service beginning on August 16, restoring most service to pre-Covid levels while maintaining a strong response posture to Covid-19. Metrorail will add 15 hours more service per week, with opening times returning to normal and the system closing two hours later each night in anticipation of potential increases in ridership after Labor Day.” [Facebook]
New Job: Nanny — “MyWoosah provides personalized childcare solutions for busy families across the country. Our services include childcare, transportation, home management, and nanny share.” [Indeed]
Alexandria Businesses Get Millions in Federal Loans — “The vast majority of the loans in Alexandria were less than $150,000, helping small businesses keep their employees instead of laying them off. About 600 of the loans in Alexandria were worth more than $150,000, and about 100 of those were for more than $1 million. Top-dollar loans went to patent lawyers, information-technology professionals and commercial contractors. Only three of loans in Alexandria were in the coveted top bracket, which range from $5 million to $10 million.” [Gazette]
Beyer Tweets Potential Unemployment Losses of Every State — “At least 200,000 workers in Virginia will lose nearly two thirds of their weekly income at the beginning of August unless Mitch McConnell allows the Senate to pass an unemployment extension in the next few days.” [Twitter]
Fairlington United Methodist Church Blesses 1,000 Face Masks — “Over 1,000 face masks, most of them homemade, were blessed and donated by the FUMC community to Alive! Alexandria. Alive! will hand them out at their rapidly growing food distribution sites.” [Facebook]
Commonwealth’s Attorney Gives Opinion on New Laws — “At the beginning of this month, a litany of new laws went into effect. In this article, I’ll provide a synopsis of changes to the code that citizens should know about.” [AlexTimes]
New Italian Restaurant Opens in Del Ray — “Piece Out LLC, which operates Café Pizzaiolo, St. Elmo’s and Markt2Market, opened a from-scratch Italian restaurant at 2419 Mount Vernon Ave. Piece Out will initially focus on carry-out dining with plans to grow into a sit-down restaurant as the region starts to recover from the coronavirus crisis, according to owner Larry Ponzi.” [Alexandria Living]
Apothecary Museum’s Harry Potter Event Goes Virtual — “Stabler-Leadbeater Apothecary Museum’s Harry Potter birthday celebration, a favorite for visitors in Alexandria, will move online due to the pandemic.” [Patch]
New Job: Retail Cheesemonger — “Everyone’s favorite Cheese & Wine Shop is hiring retail sales associates (“cheesemongers”) for all locations. Part-Time and Full-Time available.” [Indeed]
Beyer Warns of Looming Economic Catastrophe — “For months we’ve propped up the economy with strong government stimulus, especially unemployment benefits. Those benefits will expire in 25 days amid dire state and local government shortfalls. McConnell and Trump remain opposed to extending them. Economic catastrophe looms.” [Twitter]
ACPS Asks for Community Input With Reopening Survey — “We are aware that the situation we are facing is unprecedented, constantly changing, and requires a degree of flexibility from all of us. You will be asked to make a decision about your commitment to return to school in late July. By that time you will have a clear idea of our anticipated reopening plans for the fall to assist you in your decision.” [ACPS]
Visit Alexandria Shifts Strategy — “In a complete shift from prior marketing plans, Visit Alexandria emphasized the need to focus much closer to home. They plan to target the drive market, beginning with the local DC area and moving out to a 3-hour drive radius. This is in direct response to trends in consumer comfort levels which show that many people are afraid to fly or travel great distances.” [Alexandria Living]
How An Old Town Book Shop Adapted to COVID-19 — “Inside, the shop went from cozy bookstore to book-packing assembly line, and the team was grateful to be able to keep working.” [Alexandria Living]
There’s Outdoor Yoga in Del Ray Wednesday — “This class is for all levels but is designed to be an easy and cooling flow class. Bring your mat. All spots will be socially distanced and it will be first come first serve. Masks are not required for outdoor activity but are encouraged. Refreshments to follow. We look forward to seeing you there!” [Facebook]
New Job: Interview Supervisor — “The Interviewer Supervisor, a public health professional, is responsible for managing a team of approximately ten (10) Contact Interviewers and/or Case Interviewers.” [Workforce Development Center]
Alfred Street Baptist Church Leaders March on Washington — “Reverend Dr. Howard-John Wesley, pastor of the Alfred Street Baptist Church, welcomed hundreds of marchers, including regional and local ecumenical believers and leaders, along with national faith leaders.” [WTOP]
Nonprofit Used Book Store Planned for Del Ray — “Don Alexander, a resident, posted on the web platform Nextdoor that he is collecting used books and plans to open a used bookstore at 1712 Mt Vernon Ave., which is near Alexandria Hyundai and R&B Plumbing.” [Alexandria Living]
City Reports 17 New COVID-19 Cases Sunday — “These new cases come as Northern Virginia is in Phase Two of reopening.” [WJLA]
Office of Historic Alexandria Documenting Protests — “Recognizing the importance of this moment in history, the Office of Historic Alexandria invites the community to share signs, t-shirts, flyers, photographs, journals, personal stories, and artifacts that document local vigils and protests surrounding the murders of black and brown victims at the hands of police.” [Facebook]
New Job: The Fish Market is Hiring — “We are back open and in need of some help! Positions available include Host, Server, Cook, Dishwasher, Busser, Food Runner, and BarBack. Stop by TODAY and fill out an application!” [Facebook]
Alexandria Enters Phase 2 of Reopening Economy — “Under phase two, the maximum number of people allowed to gather increases from 10 to 50. Restaurants can open indoor dining at 50 percent capacity, and fitness centers can open at 30 percent capacity.” [Alex Times]
Del. Herring Supports Criminal Justice Reform — “As legislators there is a lot of work ahead of ahead of us. This piece was originally published in 2018 & updated. From policing to solitary confinement this is worth reading & then acting.” [Twitter]
Sheriff and Staff Congratulate T.C. Williams High School Graduates — “You’ve handled it with true Titan spirit — responsibly, creatively and boldly! We’re so proud of you and we will always remember the 2020 Titans!” [Facebook]
Locals Create Face Mask Company — “The masks sell for only $5.00 apiece in packs of 3/$15 for a very breathable fleece, and 3/$20 for the scuba knit. They also have adorable children’s masks, in colorful fabrics, sized appropriately.” [Zebra]
Old Town Books Closed Sunday in Recognition of Black Lives Matter Protestors — “Our storefront will be CLOSED this Sunday, June 14 to stand in solidarity with protestors in Old Town. We’ve also extended our donations from the antiracist reading list on our homepage, with 20% of sales from those books going toward the Black Lives Matter movement. A lot of the books on the list are in high demand right now and are taking a bit longer than usual to receive, so we appreciate your patience as we continue to fulfill all your orders!” [Facebook]
fibre space Staying Closed Until Next Week — “While northern VA will begin phase 2 tomorrow, we will remain closed to the public for in store shopping until some time next week. This will allow us to monitor Nova cases of covid as well as figure out a schedule for the team that balances processing web orders with hosting customers in the shop. More details to come. See you soon.” [Facebook]
Bishop Ireton High School Raises $70K for Annual Fund — “We did it! Thanks to YOU and your generosity, we met our goal of getting a donation from every state (and DC) during our 2020 Annual Fund Day of Giving. We raised more than $70,000 with a number of first time donors. Thank you for supporting Bishop Ireton, our current students and faculty and the future of our school.” [Facebook]
New Job: Event Manager — “The Individual will be responsible managing part and full time employees in operations, logistics, and events. The position requires a strong Project Management background to ensure the continued success of our various events offered throughout the country.” [Indeed]
High School Student Assaulted Walking Home — “The assault occurred near the intersection of Russell Road and Rosecrest Avenue in the Del Ray/Rosemont neighborhood. The victim was a member of the T.C. Williams High School baseball team.” [Alex Times]
Officers Complain of Toxic Work Culture at Alexandria Police Department — “There are employees, including some who resigned after allegedly being subjected to retribution, who blame Chief Michael L. Brown for establishing an environment without discipline or accountability, where misconduct is swept under the rug. They say that under Chief Brown’s leadership, problems have gotten worse, which has fueled retirements and resignations from the department.” [Alex Times]
Vigil for Victims of Police Brutality Tonight in Arlandria — “Let’s join in solidarity with our Black community. Please bring a candle, poster, or other tribute to honor the lives lost at the hands of police. We will gather in the parking lot behind TWU’s building at 3801 Mount Vernon Avenue, Alexandria, VA 22305. For everyone’s safety, please wear a face covering.” [Facebook]
fibrespace Gives May 31 Profits to ‘Innocence Project’ — ‘Thanks to your shopping, we sent almost a thousand dollars today to this incredible organization who is working to exonerate the innocent and reform our broken criminal justice system.” [Facebook]
George Mason Elementary Donates Books to Community Lodgings — “The principal, Mr. O., was so generous to collect the books and spread them around the lawn at Fifer so that families could select books while maintaining a safe distance from one another.” [Facebook]
Virtual Concert Saturday Benefiting Senior Services of Alexandria — “100 percent of your contributions to the Löwball virtual tip jar for our June 6th webcast will go to support SSA Meals on Wheels program.” [Facebook]
Wesley Housing Closes on Affordable Housing Near Huntington Metro — “Located at 2317 Huntington Avenue, The Arden will be a seven-story building at the intersection of Huntington Avenue and Biscayne Drive.” [Zebra]
New Job: Brand and Public Relations Specialist — “The Specialist, Brand and Public Relations is a core member of the SHRM Brand and Communication team with responsibilities to support national TV commercials, brand activations, PR campaigns and earned media to amplify SHRM’s thought leadership and reputation.” [Indeed]