Alexandria, VA

With Alexandria poised to potentially lose two Metro stations due to funding cuts, Rep. Don Beyer issued a statement blasting the proposed cuts as “apocalyptic” and said Congress should rally to pass a new set of funding.

Proposed cuts include ending service after 9 p.m., ending weekend service, reducing the number of trains, and closing operations at 19 stations. Two of those stations, Eisenhower and Van Dorn Street, are located in Alexandria.

“The proposed WMATA budget cuts would be apocalyptic for Metro service and devastate its workforce,” Beyer said in a press release. “This catastrophe must not be allowed to happen, and Congress can prevent it by passing a new aid package. WMATA is not alone in its massive funding shortfall, which is a direct result of the pandemic. Cuts like this will hit across the country without robust aid for state and local governments and specific targeted funding for transit.”

Metro had already been facing a death spiral before the pandemic, but the bad situation was significantly exacerbated by the loss of ridership — around a 90% decrease — due to COVID-19.

“On the Joint Economic Committee we predicted massive, urgent need for state and local government funding at the beginning of April,” Beyer said. “The House passed a legislative package that addressed that problem and included $32 billion in transit funding in May, but Mitch McConnell has blocked additional aid.”

WMATA is currently facing an estimated $500 million shortfall.

Beyer was not alone. Other local leaders also shared frustration at the proposed cuts and said measures must be taken to prevent the worst-case-scenario cuts.

Staff photo by Jay Westcott

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Morning Notes

Elderly resident rescues dog walker pinned under 500-pound headstone — “When Suzanne Dalton went out to walk her dog in Bethel Cemetery… one fall afternoon, the last thing she expected was to have a literal brush with death. After a headstone fell on her arm and pinned her to the ground, Charles Nelson, an 89-year-old Alexandria resident, came to her assistance and lifted the 500-pound stone up just enough for her to escape.” [Alex Times]

Beyer Says Trump is Being ‘Theatrical’ — “Refusing to initiate a peaceful transition of power in the middle of a deadly pandemic because he’s being theatrical.” [Twitter]

Alexandria Sheriff’s Office Reports New Phone Scam — “If you receive a call from someone saying they are from the Alexandria Sheriff’s Office (or any other Sheriff’s Office) and that you have to pay them money, hang up. Scammers will try a variety of approaches to intimidate and coerce people into giving them money. But actual sheriffs’ offices in Virginia will never call you and demand money.” [Zebra]

The Story Behind the ‘Official Sock of Alexandria’ — “Alexandria’s new official sock is being made in the USA by Living Royal and will be a high quality, soft unisex crew sock. A hundred pairs will be made initially, with the potential for more if the initial batch sells out.” [Alexandria Living]

Made In ALX Makers Market Opens — “While millions of people shop on national retail websites, it’s harder to stumble across local artists and craftspeople working right here in Alexandria. MadeinALX.com is a website and platform designed to support local artists, creators and makers and connect them to consumers.” [Alexandria Living]

Today’s Weather — “Cloudy skies early, followed by partial clearing. Slight chance of a rain shower. High 63F. Winds NW at 10 to 15 mph. Clear skies (in the evening). Low around 40F. Winds NW at 5 to 10 mph.” [Weather.com]

New Job: Fingerprint Operator — “This is an entry-level, part-time position and prior experience in the field or a related field is not required. You will receive training in taking and verifying personnel fingerprints, making comparisons of rolled inked and computer image fingerprints, use of fingerprint scanning equipment, completing fingerprinting forms and submitting reports at the end of the fingerprinting session.” [Indeed]

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Morning Notes


Senators Kaine and Warner Urge GSA to Begin Transition Process
— “An orderly and peaceful transition process is critical as the country continues to grapple with the loss and far-reaching impacts brought on by the COVID-19 pandemic.'” [Twitter]

Beyer Asks Residents to Stay Home — “Being tired of the pandemic won’t make it stop, we need to be as careful as possible right now.” [Twitter]

Virtual Restaurant Touchdown Wings & Burgers Opens — “Touchdown Wings & Burgers runs out of Joe Theismann’s Restaurant. In mid-October, ARP opened Touchdown Wings & Burgers, a new brand for the organization.” [Alexandria Living]

Alexandria Library Gets Grant for Climate Change Programming — “By receiving the grant, Alexandria Library has committed to becoming a Climate Resilience Hub.” [Zebra]

Casa Chirilagua 5K Extended to November 11 — “GREAT NEWS! Christ the King Church has extended the Casa Virtual 5K to November 11! You now have 2.5 more weeks to register and participate. This is one way you can support the Chirilagua families that face so much adversity with strength and courage. Can you help us reach our 1,000 km goal?” [Facebook]

Today’s Weather — “Rain early…then remaining cloudy with showers in the afternoon. Morning high of 65F with temps falling to near 55. Winds N at 10 to 15 mph. Chance of rain 90%. Rainfall near a quarter of an inch. Cloudy skies. Low 48F. Winds N at 5 to 10 mph.” [Weather.com]

New Job: Dog Trainer/Instructor — “Olde Towne School for Dogs, the premiere dog training company located in Alexandria, VA serving the D.C. metropolitan area, is looking to hire new full-time trainers to our high energy team in a fast-paced and dog-filled environment!” [Indeed]

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Morning Notes

Alexandria Man Shot to Death in Georgetown — “Officers from the Second District responded around 2:56 a.m., to the 3300 block of Water St., N.W., for the sound of gunshots. They found Franklin Hernandez Arevalo, 19, of Alexandria, Virginia suffering from a gunshot wound. D.C. Fire and EMS determined Arevalo had died and transported him later to the Office of the Chief Medical Examiner.” [Patch]

Beyer Says Trump Trying to Steal Election — “This is simple: Donald Trump is openly trying to steal an election he lost. He will not succeed, but we will remember who went along with it. ‘I was just following orders’ will not be accepted as an excuse for attempting to overthrow the results of an American election.” [Twitter]

ALIVE! Free Food Distribution is this Saturday — “On Sat, Nov 14, 8:30-10:30 am, @ALIVE4AlexVA will distribute food in Cora Kelly Elementary School parking lot (3600 Commonwealth Ave) and parking lot B-1 of NOVA-Alexandria Campus (3320 Bisdorf Drive; map at alive-inc.org).” [Twitter]

Free Flu Shots This Wednesday — “Now is the time to get a flu shot! The next Alexandria Inova Cares Clinic for Families FREE flu shot clinic for uninsured people is Wednesday, Nov. 11, 3-5 p.m.” [Twitter]

Virtual Alexandria Film Festival Kicks Off Nov. 12 — “There are about 50 films in this year’s festival.” [Alexandria Living]

Today’s Weather — “Intervals of clouds and sunshine (during the day). Areas of patchy fog. High around 75F. Winds S at 5 to 10 mph. Partly cloudy skies during the evening will give way to cloudy skies overnight. Slight chance of a rain shower. Low 62F. Winds S at 5 to 10 mph.” [Weather.com]

New Job: Juvenile Detention Specialist — “The Detention Specialist work involves providing direct care to detainees in the custody of the Northern Virginia Juvenile Detention Center. The primary responsibilities for the position are to provide security, safety and care for juveniles. The Detention Specialist shall receive direct supervision by the Assistant Shift Supervisor and Shift Supervisor.” [Indeed]

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Morning Notes

Beyer Says Biden Needs Support — “President-Elect Biden must be given all the support he needs to take the helm of government, including swift consideration and confirmation of his team, so that he can take the country forward. We have no time to lose – there is serious work to be done.” [Twitter]

Commonwealth’s Attorney Bryan Porter Was on Jeopardy — “This picture is from years ago when I had the opportunity of a lifetime to appear on Jeopardy and personally meet Alex Trebek. He was as warm and engaging as you would think he was. Today we mourn his loss. He was a television icon and philanthropist who left the world a much better place. My heart goes out to the Trebek family and to the families of all who have been impacted by this terrible disease.” [Facebook]

Mayor Reminds Residents of Celebrating Biden Win Without Fireworks — “Just a reminder from your Mayor/Wet Blanket: Fireworks remain illegal in the City of Alexandria #CelebrateResponsibly” [Twitter]

City Recommends Celebrating a Virtual Thanksgiving — “The City and the AHD strongly urge those celebrating Thanksgiving to choose lower risk activities to reduce the likelihood of COVID-19 outbreaks, rather than the traditional indoor gatherings and traveling.” [Twitter]

City Tearing Down Robinson Terminal North — “AlexRenew is demolishing the building as part of its much larger plans to improve Alexandria’s sewer and stormwater infrastructure.” [Alexandria Living]

Alexandria’s Tree Lighting Goes Virtual on Nov. 21 — “Alexandria’s annual Tree Lighting ceremony that rings in the holiday season will be a little different this year. Because of the coronavirus pandemic, the event that usually takes place at Market Square will be held online on Saturday, Nov. 21.” [Zebra]

Today’s Weather — “Areas of patchy fog early. Partly cloudy skies. High 72F. Winds light and variable. A few clouds overnight. Areas of patchy fog. Low 54F. Winds light and variable.” [Weather.com]

New Job: Development and Communications Specialist — “The Campagna Center’s (TCC) Development Specialist plays a vital role in ensuring that TCC’s donors feel good about their giving. The individual will act as the first point of contact for stewardship activities and donor requests, always presenting an amicable demeanor, a can-do attitude, and appropriately reflecting TCC’s mission and values.” [Indeed]

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It was a historic week in Alexandria.

Alexandrians overwhelmingly helped reelect U.S. Senator Mark Warner and Congressman Don Beyer, and 80% of voters chose Democrat former Vice President Joe Biden for president over incumbent Republican President Donald Trump.

Out top story this week was election-related. It turns out that before election day several Alexandria households with Joe Biden signs were sent letters with a Northern Virginia postage mark stating that Biden is a pedophile. The Chair of the Alexandria Democratic Committee advised that anyone who receives such notes should call the police. The police, in turn, are sending along the information to the U.S. Postal Inspection Service.

Additionally, 91 people participated in our weekly poll. This week we asked about election night plans, and 65% of respondents said they were staying home to watch the results, 24% had no eleciton night plans, 10% planned to protest that evening, and 1% were going to an election night event.

School News

Alexandria City Public Schools were back in action this week — sort of. While the ACPS opened in-person classes on Thursday, fewer than 10 students made it to class. There were about 60 students eligible to go back to school, since only kids with kindergarten through second graders with disabilities were allowed to attend Jefferson-Houston PreK-8 IB School.

It was the first in-person public schooling in Alexandria since the pandemic shut down schools in March. ACPS plans to expand opening for all citywide special education students by December. Meanwhile, however, hundreds of parents want the school system to open and have started the #OpenACPS messaging campaign.

Also in school news, a two-year-long court battle was settled with the city and 15 Alexandria homeowners were settled regarding the addition of stadium lights to Parker-Gray Stadium at T.C. Williams High School.

The Week in Crime

The week started with news that there were two shootings in Alexandria over the weekend.

The was also the story of a 17-year-old on the run since last month after allegedly stealing a car in the West End. The juvenile, who later admitted stealing the car, was seen by the victim — a federal law enforcement officer — driving past his house, and the victim got into another of his cars and followed the suspect. The victim got the juvenile out of his car and held him at the scene until police arrived, and the juvenile left the area after being charged.

We also covered the story of the ‘Beltway Bank Bandit’. Freddie Lee McRae, 34, of Washington D.C., pleaded guilty to three counts of brandishing a firearm during a series of bank and shoe store robberies in and around Alexandria in 2018 and 2019. He will be sentenced on February 23, 2021, and faces up to life in prison and a mandatory minimum of 21 years in prison.

Health and Business

As of Friday there were 76 deaths attributed to the coronavirus in Alexandria, and the case count stands at 4,444, according to the Virginia Department of Health. Latino residents continue to lead the case count.

We also reported that longtime Del Ray staple, Al’s Steak House, is for sale since the owner passed away.

This week also saw fewer continued and initial unemployment claims in Alexandria.

Here are ALXnow’s top stories of the week in Alexandria:

  1. Alexandrians with Joe Biden Yard Signs Get Anonymous Letters Saying Biden is a Pedophile
  2. Del Ray Staple Al’s Steak House for Sale After Owner’s Death
  3. Republican Jeff Jordan Running Uphill Battle Against Incumbent Rep. Don Beyer
  4. Braddock West Project Headed to Planning Commission Later This Year
  5. Identity Released of Old Town North Suspect Killed in Shootout
  6. Soft Opening for New Chicken Joint in North Old Town Today
  7. Alexandria Parents Start #OpenACPS Sign Campaign as School System Begins Partial Reopening
  8. Juvenile Allegedly Steals Car and is Tracked Down by Victim in the West End
  9. BREAKING: Massive Power Outage Reported in Alexandria
  10. The Alexandria Drive-In Just Kicked Off an Encore Series on Halloween
  11. Did You Know: The Tall Ship Providence Encountered a Ghost Ship in 1777

Have a safe weekend!

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Morning Notes

Beyer Says Trump Only Cares About Himself — “Trump doesn’t care about legal principles or the law. Trump doesn’t care about fair counts, and he doesn’t care about our democratic norms. Trump doesn’t care about his oath to protect the Constitution. The only thing Donald Trump cares about is Donald Trump.” [Twitter]

Mas Seafood to Open Retail Space in Old Town — “From the previous North Henry Street location, they supplied restaurants in Alexandria and Arlington, including Daniel O’Connell’s Pub, Fontaine Caffe & Creperie, Alexandria Pasty Shop and Belle Haven Pizzeria. While they had always been interested in doing retail sales, it wasn’t until the COVID-19 pandemic upended their market that they were able to make the shift — almost by accident.” [Alexandria Living]

Outcasts Brass Band Jazzes Up Old Town — “Band members who can wear masks while playing wear their masks, and all band members wear masks in between songs. They also stand farther apart from one another and encourage audiences to practice social distancing and wear masks.” [Alex Times]

Alexandrian Sending Space Cube to Moon — “Alexandria’s Hudson Merrick is going to take a selfie in space. At least that is part of what he what he and 19 other carefully selected students at Embry-Riddle Aeronautical University are attempting in the latest space mission, the EagleCam CubeSat camera system. The first-of-its-kind student-led project aims to snap a third-person ‘selfie’ of a lunar lander touching down on the moon.” [Zebra]

DCHS Helping Residents with Medicare Open Enrollment — “Do you or someone you know need assistance with Medicare Open Enrollment? The Department of Community and Human Services can help. The Medicare health insurance program–for people age 65 or older, or under age 65 with certain disabilities or disease–encourages all enrollees to review their plans  to ensure the plans meet their needs. Open enrollment ends December 7.” [City of Alexandria]

Today’s Weather — “Some clouds in the morning will give way to mainly sunny skies for the afternoon. High 72F. Winds light and variable. A mostly clear sky (in the evening). Low 46F. Winds light and variable.”[Weather.com]

New Job: Ministry Program Associate — “This is a full-time position at the Alfred Street Baptist Church (ASBC) located in Alexandria, Virginia. The incumbent is under the day-to-day supervision of the Liaison for Ministries and serves as Ministry Program Associate. This role is primarily responsible for providing direction and leadership to ministry leaders and staff in the areas of ministry program development, volunteer and event management and new ministry development.” [Indeed]

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Democrat Don Beyer didn’t waste any time after his reelection on Tuesday to go back to bashing President Donald Trump on Twitter. With his fourth Congressional election for Virginia’s 8th District wrapped up, Beyer says he’s on pins and needles to see the results of the presidential election.

He also just tweeted that President Trump a liar who is trying to steal the election.

“I love my job,” Beyer told ALXnow. “I love the responsibilities that I have. And, you know, I work my heart out. I’m glad I get to do it for two more years, but I but I’m always very humble about it. I know there are a lot of other people who could do this job well and so I’m just determined to take this responsibility as seriously as I can and work as hard as I can.”

Beyer, a former lieutenant governor, defeated Republican Jeff Jordan to retain his seat for a fourth term. Beyer won with 76% of the vote (293,235 votes) to Jordan’s 24% (93,906 votes), according to the Virginia Department of Elections.

“I think we’re discovering yet again just how divided our country is, and it in me at least it inspires a real need to try to find ways to to heal up the divisions,” Beyer said. “One of my great hopes for Joe Biden is that he would be a healer, you know that President Trump obviously has been working on a different philosophy of dividing us, which I don’t think is good for the health of our country.”

If Democrats win the House, then Beyer will chair the Joint Economic Committee, he says.

“I’m hoping to use those two years of hearings to dive deep on the income inequality and the wealth inequality in our country,” he said. “We need to look really deeply at what the concentration of business have done to the wages of the average person. That lax antitrust enforcement has made ever more employees of  companies with wages continually pushed down.”

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It’s election day, November 3, 2020. Here’s what you need to know about voting today in Alexandria.

On the ballot for Nov. 3 is the race for president and vice president, a U.S. Senate and Congressional seat and two proposed Constitutional Amendments.

The polls opened at 6 a.m. and close at 7 p.m. More than 50% of Alexandria voters have cast their ballots so far, and the Alexandria results and statewide results will be posted after polls close tonight.

Need a ride to vote? Both the Alexandria Democratic Committee (703-549-3367) and Alexandria GOP (571-281-7042) will drive you to the polls.

What To Expect At The Polls

Voters on November 3 should expect to find foot markers to encourage social distancing inside and outside polling precincts.

Additionally:

  • Polling officers will be separated from voters by plexiglass, and will not touch any identification
  • Voters will be required to wear face masks, and the Alexandria Medical Reserve Corps will be on-hand to make sure masks are worn properly. They will also have free masks
  • Voters who can’t go into a polling precinct can vote curbside
  • Ballots will be placed in one-time use manila folders

Polling Place Changes

See a sample ballot below the jump.

Read More

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Morning Notes

Beyer Slams Trump Before Election — “He has run the most corrupt presidential administration in history.” [Twitter]

Free COVID Test Pop-Ups Twice a Week — The City is continuing our targeted COVID-19 testing initiative in partnership with @NeighborhoodHth into November. Starting tomorrow, our free testing pop-ups are now scheduled twice a week!” [Twitter]

Alexandria Fire Department is Hiring — “The Alexandria Fire Department is now hiring for the Firefighter/EMT position. The application process is open through Wednesday, Nov. 4. No previous experience needed.” [Twitter]

Alexandria Deputy Shoots Self in Leg During Training — ” An Alexandria Sheriff’s Office deputy accidentally shot himself in the leg Friday morning at the Northern Virginia Criminal Justice Training Academy in Ashburn, according to the Loudoun County Sheriff’s Office.” [Patch]

Today’s Weather — “Sunny skies (during the day). High near 60F. Winds WNW at 10 to 20 mph. Clear skies (in the evening). Low near 40F. Winds light and variable.” [Weather.com]

New Job: Pet Care Specialist — “We are looking for dedicated animal lovers to join our growing company! We offer a competitive benefits package including health insurance, supplemental insurance, IRA, and smartphone for full-time VIP client routes. Applicants MUST have a car, internet access, and basic computer skills to be considered for employment.” [Indeed]

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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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Morning Notes

Beyer says New White House Science Report is Misinformation — “This kind of ridiculous misinformation is something you would expect to see from the government of North Korea.” [Twitter]

Senator Amy Klobuchar Attends GOTV Event in Alexandria — “Glad to join @AlexVADems, @C_Herring, @AmyJacksonVA and Councilwoman Del Pepper at an early voting event in Alexandria, Virginia for Sen. Mark Warner and VA candidates up and down the ballot. Everyone, please make a plan and go vote!” [Twitter]

New Luxury Condos Near Amazon HQ2 and Virginia Tech in Alexandria — “Just minutes from Amazon’s new HQ2 complex in Northern Virginia, The FORTIS Companies of Washington, DC has broken ground on a 138-unit luxury condominium community called Dylan. Its planned 2022 delivery coincides with the highly anticipated opening of the new Potomac Yard Metro Station, a five-minute walk from Dylan’s front door. Dylan’s spacious one- to three-bedroom condos will average 1,200 square feet and will be priced from the $600,000’s to over $1 million.” [Zebra]

Upland Park Development Gets BDAC Approval — “On Monday evening, the Beauregard Design Advisory Committee (BDAC) hosted its the final meeting to discuss Phase 1 of the Upland Park development project, giving approval to the plans to build a new townhome community.” [Alexandria Living]

Fire Department Recommends Battery-Operated Candles this Halloween — “If you have fall/Halloween decorations, use battery-operated candles in jack-o-lanterns & keep all decorations away from open flames to prevent home fires. Read more about celebrating safely & preventing the spread of COVID-19 during your festivities.” [Twitter]

Today’s Weather — “Cloudy (during the day). High 73F. Winds light and variable. Rain showers in the evening will evolve into a more steady rain overnight. Low 59F. Winds light and variable. Chance of rain 100%. Rainfall near a half an inch.” [Weather.com]

New Job: Document Control Specialist — “Use knowledge of the legal process and legal terms to analyze the content of legal documents and determine the status of investigative or court proceedings; recognize documents that are missing; and work with attorneys, paralegals, and legal assistants to obtain and organize documents for filing.” [Indeed]

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