Alexandria, VA

Morning Notes

Victory Center Property Sold to Townhouse Developer — “Winchester Homes plans to build 138 townhouses ranging from 1,700 SF to 2,600 SF on the site. Winchester has built over 20,000 residential units across the Mid-Atlantic, including six communities that have opened in the last year. The deal comes after the Alexandria City Council in May approved a rezoning of the site’s 7-acre eastern parking lot that allows for a mix of uses. Two weeks later, Stonebridge acquired the property from PGIM Real Estate for $43M.” [Bisnow]

Alexandria Woman Arrested for Breaking Quarantine in Hawaii — “Kauai police arrested 31-year-old Desiree Marvin of Alexandria and 36-year-old Hawaii resident Adam Schwarze after they ignored orders to immediately self-quarantine.” [Alex Times]

Burke & Herbert Bank Responds to Limit on PPP Loans — “The Bank also has many applications in various stages of completion that had not yet been entered into the SBA system. While the SBA no longer is allowing us to submit applications to them at this time, we believe that it is in our customers’ best interest to continue finalizing these applications, collecting all required information and documentation, and readying them for immediate entry should new funding become available. Please continue to work with your banker to ensure that we have a complete application package ready for your business.” [Burke & Herbert]

Polk Elementary School Student Pens Inspiring Message — “This virus spreads. So can kindness. We’re in this together!” [Facebook]

Cheesetique Thanks Delivery Driver — “This is why it’s no exaggeration when I say that Malcom’s arrival is heralded with shouts, cheers, and sighs of relief from my team. And he’s out there EVERY DAY. He’s doing the heavy lifting to ensure that folks like us can take things the last 10 feet. Thank you to all of those ‘behind-the-scenes’ heroes who keep our businesses running. Thank you, Malcolm, for being there… with our cucumbers.” [Facebook]

Amtrak PD Officer Provides Pizza for Alexandria Police — “Ofc. Cameron Dux (AmtrakPD) is on a crusade to thank police officers during the pandemic. He delivered Valentino’s Pizza to our agency.” [Twitter]

RunningBrooke Launches Move2Learn-At-Home — “In an effort to make these as widely-accessible as possible, RunningBrooke videos can be viewed on ACPS-TV, RunningBrooke’s YouTube channel, multi-“classroom” Zoom fitness sessions, the RunningBrooke website and on social media platforms.” [Alexandria Living]

Junction Bakery & Bistro Delivering Soon — “Check it out, folks — our new Junction Delivery is almost ready to launch! We bring it to you: groceries, breads & pastries, family meals, and beer & wine — and pssst … cocktails coming too . Cheaper than Uber Eats!” [Facebook]

Carpenter’s Shelter Needs Food — “With the opening of the Safety Shelter at the Charles Houston Recreation Center, our food needs have expanded. We would like to thank our amazing community for jumping right in and helping to fulfill our needs within an incredibly short window. As of right now all of our meals are covered for the Safety Shelter through April 24th!” [Facebook]

Center For Alexandria’s Children Gets Face Mask Donation — “We received these cloth masks from Brooksie & Cas! Thank you so much for making and sending these to us. We are very grateful to you for helping to keep our team members safe. #StaySafe #StayHome #MasksForAll” [Facebook]

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Morning Notes

Alfred Street Baptist Church Virtual Worship Service Gets 19K Views –“Thank you for this amazing word today!! God Bless!” [Facebook]

Hospital Nurses Play Games With COVID-19 Patients — “Inova Nurses are helping our patients any way they can during these challenging times, from medical attention to a friendly game of tic tac toe. #InovaHeroes” [Facebook]

Early Giving Begins For Spring2ACTion Fundraiser — “Because of the current crisis, organizations have had to cancel fundraising events and programs that generate revenue. Classrooms and theaters are dark, and programs are cancelled in adherence of social distancing guidelines. Many nonprofits are depleting their reserves to purchase emergency food and supplies for their constituents.” [Spring2ACTion]

Sales of Titan Senior Magnets and Yard Signs Going to Relief Fund — “Don’t have a senior but want to show your support? Buy a community sign! All proceeds will support the PTSA’s new initiative [the] Titans Care COVID Relief Fund!” [tcwallnightgradparty.com]

ALIVE! Thanks Community For Food Giveaway Support — “Huge THANK YOU to Old Blue BBQ for purchasing and donating 500 pounds of potatoes for this weekend’s Truck-to-Trunk food distribution! They came to help pack 4000 grocery bags, but when they realized there wouldn’t be enough produce, left and came back with fresh produce for Alexandria’s neediest.”[Facebook]

Alexandria Symphony Reschedules Performance — Due to concerns surrounding COVID-19, the Alexandria Symphony has rescheduled its “Brandenburgs and Brew” concert to Friday, June 12, 2020. [alexsym.org]

Sales From Alexandria Restaurant Partners T-Shirts Going to Staff — “T-shirt sales end on Monday, April 6, so be sure to purchase yours today!” [Facebook]

Atlantis Pizzeria and Family Restaurant is Open For Carryout — “Jimmy and Bill are brothers who opened Atlantis 38 years ago. They have built up a loyal customer base that continues to support them during this difficult time. They remain open each day because they never want to disappoint their customers. They could use all the help they can get right now. Open for carry out only. Order a pizza and come pick it up. It’s easy. Plenty of room to keep your distance and they are keeping it clean as a whistle. Hope to see you soon!” [Facebook]

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The COVID-19 pandemic has put thousands out of work around the city, but it’s also meant a surge in business for pizza delivery businesses that now need drivers.

Toppers Pizza is currently looking for 10 new delivery drivers to work $4.25 an hour plus $2 per delivery and tips. Like their competitors, Toppers is also offering contact-less service.

“We are very busy right now and getting busier. We’re absolutely hiring drivers for our Del Ray location and our location in Beacon Center on Richmond Highway,” said Toppers Pizza Assistant Manager Stephen Nimer.

Nimer added, “Send in your application online and then we’ll ask you to come in for an interview and we’ll need to see your driver’s license and Social Security card and you’ll hear an answer in a couple of days.”

Most of the pizza delivery driving jobs available in the area are at Domino’s Pizza, with dozens of openings dotted in the above map. The company is reportedly hiring 10,000 people around the country to accommodate the new business resulting from the pandemic.

More pizza joints in Alexandria hiring drivers:

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Alexandria Police are searching for two suspects who assaulted and robbed a pizza delivery driver early Wednesday morning on the 6100 block of Edsall Road.

The driver had just finished delivering a pizza at around 1 a.m. and got to his car when he was approached by two unknown suspects. The victim, who is a male in his 50s, was punched in the face during the incident and his cash and car were stolen, according to APD spokesman Lt. Courtney Ballantine.

One suspect brandished a handgun during the incident, police said. No suspect descriptions are currently available.

The victim was treated at the scene for minor injuries.

The incident occurred near a number of apartment complexes in the city’s West End and within walking distance of S. Van Dorn Street.

Image via Google Maps

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(Updated 4:45 p.m.) If everything goes to plan, husband and wife team Jeffrey Jr. and Kelly Yates may finally be able to open the pizza restaurant that’s been “opening soon” since early 2014.

The dream of Yates Pizza Palace started in 2014 when Jeffrey Yates Sr., owner of the Yates Car Wash and recent purchaser of Table Talk (1623 Duke Street), purchased the space on the 3000 block of Duke Street that had been local pizza and pasta institution Generous George’s.

Jeffrey Sr. worked to completely remodel the building, with Scott Long Construction adding large windows, a rooftop deck, and a new kitchen. When Jeff Jr. walks inside the building and sees the tasteful and detailed work done by his dad, a down-to-earth engineer with a passion for the city, he said it makes him feel proud of his father.

The goal was to offer the best New York-style pizza in the city. But when Jeff Jr. and Kelly visited before a planned move out to Oregon, Jeffrey Sr. admitted to his son that he was sick with cancer and asked if his son could help with some of the work that needed to be done on the restaurant.

Jeff Jr. and Kelly moved to Alexandria in 2017 and worked to help get the restaurant together. Jeff Jr. said his father was insistent on doing much of the work himself, once devising an improvised mechanism that allowed the two of them and a few friends to move four massive pizza ovens into place.

Kelly said they thought Jeffrey Sr. was going to get better, but he didn’t. Jeffrey Sr. died in 2018, leaving his local businesses in the hands of his son. Jeff Jr. said he never thought he was going to be part of the family business, but over the last year he and Kelly have worked with the managers and staff at Table Talk and Yates Car Wash to help get their bearings.

“It’s nice to have people to lean on,” Kelly said. “The businesses are all so different and some of the people have been there as long as Jeff’s been around.”

During that time, Jeff Jr. said he also learned to become more comfortable not just following in his father’s footsteps, but taking his own ideas and implementing them as well.

“I’m getting less timid about doing it the way dad did,” Jeff Jr. said. “I’m different. I’m more cautious.”

As Jeff Jr. and Kelly worked to take the wheel of the businesses following Jeffrey Sr.’s death, the current businesses took priority over work on Yates Pizza Palace. After getting a green light from the city earlier this year, however, Kelly said the pair is ready to take off and fire on all cylinders to get Yates Pizza Palace open.

“It would kill me for another summer to go by while the building is ready to go,” Jeff Jr. said.

Their hope is for Yates Pizza Palace to serve quality pizza and pasta, but also to be a gathering place for the local community the way Generous George’s was. Jeff Jr. also said the name “Yates Pizza Palace” may or may not stay.

The last big thing that Jeff Jr. and Kelly have on their todo list before the restaurant is ready to open is picking the right partners to work with in operating the restaurant, but there are already a few potential partners the pair have in mind.

“It’s finally time,” Jeff Jr. said, prompting a soft laugh from Kelly.

“It feels funny to finally hear that,” Kelly said.

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Parent-teacher conferences can be a stressful situation for both parties, but a donation from a nearby pizza shop helped ease that stress last week at Cora Kelly School for Math, Science and Technology.

A manager at Toppers Pizza (3827 Mount Vernon Avenue) in Del Ray said they received an order for 185 pizzas from someone in Alexandria City Public Schools, in preparation for parent-teacher conferences.

“One store did half, and we did half,” the manager said. “It was just so many pizzas.”

https://twitter.com/CKELEM/status/1194948303722553349

Because it was going to the schools, Toppers ended up donating roughly 50 of the pizzas.

“We like to do that for the schools,” the manager said. “We’re constantly getting calls from the school, so we try to help as much as we can.”

Jasibi Crews, principal of Cora Kelly School for Math, Science and Technology, said the pizzas helped out with busy day.

“We are so lucky at Cora Kelly to have such a supportive local community,” Crews said. “We thank Toppers Pizza for their kind and delicious donation of pizzas. They were very much appreciated.”

Photo via Toppers/Facebook

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