Stories for January 2013

Stories for January 2013


Thursday, January 31

Titans Hand Spartans First Home Loss Since 2009

TC’s Roberts scores 18 points before leaving with wrist injury.

The T.C. Williams girls' basketball team is tied with West Springfield atop the Patriot District standings, but the Titans won both meetings with the Spartans this season.

Letter: Taking Exception on Medicaid Expansion

Your recent editorial ["Expanding Medicaid Good For Virginia," The Connection, January 23-29, 2013] is noble in its desire to "extend health coverage to more than 400,000 residents who currently have no health insurance." If public policy making were just that easy. The editorial then goes on to indifferently say, "the Federal government picks up the tab.

Editorial: Extreme, But Brief, Volunteering

More than 150 volunteers needed to survey chronic homeless for three days in February.

The real solution to homelessness is housing. This week in Northern Virginia, a point-in-time survey will record all of the “literally homeless” individuals and families in the region. Last year, on Jan. 25, 2012, there were 1,534 people who were literally homeless in the Fairfax-Falls Church Community; 697 of them were single individuals and 837 were people in families. A third of the total number of homeless were children. Nearly 60 percent of the adult members of the homeless families were employed.

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Lawmakers Consider Effort to Increase Salary for Next Gunston Hall Director

Next museum leader could pull down more than $88,000 a year.

George Mason was one of the wealthiest Founding Fathers, and now the Virginia General Assembly may be moving to increase the salary of the director of the house where he once lived. Gunston Hall has been in a state of flux since the previous director was finally removed from office after more than a year of calls for his resignation.

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Former School Budget Director Files Discrimination Lawsuit as ACPS Looks Forward

Last year’s scandal lingers over upcoming financial deliberations.

This time last year, the budget office at Alexandria City Public Schools was in full meltdown.

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Bipartisan Team Seeks Compensation for Victims of Forced Sterilization

Effort would give $50,000 to survivors; estimated cost would be $73 million.

Nobody knows how many people are survivors of Virginia’s forced sterilization program, which targeted people with mental illness, mental retardation or epilepsy.

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Coming for the Guns: Confiscating Firearms During Mental Health Evaluations

Alexandria delegate wants to expand police powers to confiscate guns of the detained.

Imagine the scenario: Sheriff’s deputies arrive at a home to issue a temporary detention order against an individual.

Wednesday, January 30

Classified Advertising Jan. 30, 2013

Read the lastest ads here!

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Donating Hair, Raising Awareness

Junior Girl Scout Troop 4143, of Alexandria, hosted a hair donation event recently.

Letter to the Editor: Embracing School Choice

School choice is a hot topic in Virginia, especially as our great commonwealth debates the merits of school choice policies.

Letter to the Editor: Guns Make It Too Easy to Kill

“Guns don’t kill, people do,” says the National Rifle Association. It sounds so right because it’s so obvious. But while it’s obvious that people kill, guns make it too easy to kill.

Letter to the Editor: Need Sensible Gun Laws

Two recent national events have caused me to reflect on the nature of our democracy. In the Capitol of the most powerful country on earth we witnessed the peaceful continuation of leadership. In a small Connecticut town we witnessed a violent destruction of sanctuary.

Letter to the Editor: Despicable Maneuver

On Martin Luther King Day, Henry L. Marsh III, who grew up in segregated Virginia, became a civil rights lawyer who worked on school desegregation cases who went on to become Richmond’s first African American mayor and has been a state senator since 1991, went to Washington, D.C. to see the nation’s first African American president sworn in for the second time to preserve, protect and defend the Constitution of the United States.

‘Dance Your Heart Out’ in February

In honor of National Heart Month, Metropolitan Fine Arts Center (MFAC) of Alexandria and Fairfax Station is featuring their “Dance Your Heart Out” campaign, offering unlimited adult dance and mind/body classes throughout February for a special price of $110.

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City Museums Receive Accreditation

The Office of Historic Alexandria has earned accreditation as a museum system at the November 2012 meeting of the Accreditation Commission, according to The American Alliance of Museums.

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A Noble Cause

Charity event raises $6,200 for Special Operations families.

Their victories are unknown, their successes and accomplishments unheralded. Yet our nation's Special Operations troops are considered America's best — the toughest mentally and physically and the most elite of units on any battlefield.

George Washington: Surveyor

George Washington's career began as a surveyor, and he continued that activity throughout his life.

Washington and the Culper Ring

In the 18th century, an insult to a Gentleman’s honor required a duel to settle the score. It was better to die respectably in a duel than to live without honor.

George Washington: Using Reasoning as a Winning Strategy

George Washington was committed for the long-haul to winning the American Revolution. He hoped to out-think, out-maneuver, and wear out the British before the patriots themselves lost their commitment.

Police To Provide Free Child ID Kits

Kits meant to help in cases of missing children.

The Alexandria Police Department has partnered with the Department of Community and Human Services to provide free SafeAssured child ID kits to families on Saturday, Feb. 2.

Column: Senior Services Of Alexandria

February is Heart Health month so it's not too early to register for Senior Services of Alexandria's next speaker series: "Heart Health and Fitness for Seniors."

Column: Building a Budget to Transform a Division

Students, staff, parents, members of the School Board and the entire Alexandria Community: I am honored to offer you my proposed FY 2014 combined funds budget which is centered on our students and dedicated to their learning.

Column: Home Grown

Growing up, Lucinda, the daughter of sharecroppers, lived on a plantation in the small town of Edgefield, S.C. Her family raised most of their own food, never having to buy meat, milk, eggs, potatoes, sugar …, Lucinda even became an expert butter churner as a small child. Even clothes were sewn by hand from cloth bought at a nearby cotton plantation.

Column: The High Cost of Ignoring Mental Health

Before Newtown, there was little discussion of the dismal state of mental health services. In fact, the budget knives have been sharpest at the state and local levels when it came to mental health services particularly prevention. That is not surprising.

Column: Helping Keep Community Safe

There isn’t one answer to prevent violence in our society. Gun debates often take all the headlines. Those debates are important to have. But they are not the only debate.

Column: Focus on Roads, Schools, Medicaid

It has been a week since Virginia Senate Republicans pushed through a partisan redistricting plan that has made our Commonwealth’s legislature become a national spectacle once again.

Column: Protect Yourself from the Flu

No doubt, you’ve heard the news stories about the severity of this year’s influenza season. The annual virus struck early this year across most of the country, according to tracking models compiled by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, and remains “widespread.”

Get Creative and Stay Active This Winter

A guide to local activities.

On a sunny day with a high temperature of 60 degrees, it is difficult to imagine that this is the middle of winter. While unseasonably warm days can fade snow-filled memories, there are still several weeks left in the winter season, meaning there is plenty of time to enjoy or retreat from the cold. Even if you’re not a cold-weather enthusiast, a bit of ingenuity and investigation into Alexandria’s cultural and recreational offerings can help anyone stay active this season. Here are three ways to have fun and avoid hibernation.

Indoor Winter Fun with Children

Ideas for entertainment when Jack Frost appears.

Winter weather often means limited open air playtime for some children. “It is very important for children to get as much outdoor activity as possible, but there are times when it is not safe for them to be outside for an extended length of time, or any time at all, because it is too cold. ” said Shannon Melideo, chair of the Education Department at Marymount University in Arlington. “There are many other things that children can do besides sledding and ice skating.”

Winter Fun with Food

Easy and tasty ideas for winter meals.

The stove is fired-up, a sauté pan is sizzling and the thud of a steel knife blade hitting a wooden chopping block fills the air along with the woodsy aroma of fresh thyme. The temperature outside is frigid, but the kitchen feels like an inferno as Chef Kristen Robinson drives a knife though a fennel bulb, kale leaves and a tough-skinned butternut squash with staccato succession.

Column: Redistricting Shenanigans Distract General Assembly

From constitutional amendments and uranium mining to electoral reform and redistricting, the General Assembly is dealing with a wide range of issues this year in our fast-paced 46-day session.

Friday, January 25

Classified Advertising Jan. 23, 2013

Read the latest ads here!

Thursday, January 24

Editorial: Expanding Medicaid Good for Virginia

Real health coverage for an additional 400,000 people is in reach.

Virginia has an opportunity to expand Medicaid in a way that could extend health coverage to more than 400,000 residents who currently have no health insurance while the Federal government picks up the tab; Virginia would pay 10 percent of the additional cost after 2020.

News Briefs

As Democratic delegates fight to keep firearms further from school property, Republican Bob Marshall (D-13) is pushing legislation to bring more guns in. Marshall is the chief patron of HB 1557, which would require every school board in the state to designate one volunteer to carry a concealed weapon on school property. Training for selected volunteers would be provided by either the Virginia Center for School Safety or the NRA, of which he is a member.

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Four Northern Virginia Senators Targeted

Redistricting effort puts Fairfax County seats in the spotlight.

Four Northern Virginia state Senators are targets of a Republican-led effort to draw new districts — Sen. George Barker (D-39), Sen. Dave Marsden (D-37), Sen. Toddy Puller (D-36) and Sen. Chap Petersen (D-34). Democrats say the redistricting effort is a cynical attempt to take advantage of the absence of Sen. Henry Marsh (D-16), a prominent civil rights veteran, who was in Washington, D.C. for the inauguration on Monday. But state Sen. John Watkins (R-10) of Powhatan defended the effort as a way to create a sixth majority black Senate district in Southside. It passed the Senate on a 20-to-19 vote.

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Making Schools Safer

Two Northern Virginia Democrats take part in panel to consider school security.

Do Virginia schools need more guns? That question is at the heart of a debate that’s now reaching a fever pitch in the commonwealth, especially after a man with a Bushmaster assault rifle blasted his way into a Connecticut elementary school and killed 20 children and six adults before killing himself. Republican Gov. Bob McDonnell responded to the tragedy by creating a School Safety Task Force, which is considering a proposal for every school in Virginia to have an armed school resource officer.

Wednesday, January 23

SSSAS Girls’ Basketball Stepping up to the Challenge

Saints manage winning record against the odds.

The St. Stephen's & St. Agnes girls' basketball team fell short against Sidwell Friends.

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Woodson Boys’ Basketball Extends Win Streak to 12

Cavaliers adapt to TC’s physicality in second half.

The Woodson boys' basketball team outscored T.C. Williams 23-14 in the fourth quarter.

Tweens and Teens Have a Ball

First Lady Michelle Obama and Dr. Jill Biden host Kids Inaugural Concert to honor military families.

Teens, tweens and their parents danced in the aisles, on their chairs and around the stage at the star-studded, Kids' Inaugural Concert honoring military families on Saturday, Jan. 19, in Washington, D.C.

Letter to the Editor: Imposing User Fees on the Poor

In Michael Lee Pope's article [“Smart Growth Vs. Affordable Housing,” Jan. 17], the premise is that Alexandria must choose between smart growth and affordable housing.

Getting Back to Work with Confidence

Panel reassures seniors looking for jobs.

For older adults looking to return to the labor force, getting back to work requires confidence and a willingness to embrace new technologies.

Column: Goodwin Supports Meals Program

Senior Services of Alexandria is pleased to announce that it is the recipient of the Goodwin House Angel Tree program sponsored by the Goodwin House Alexandria Memorial Chapel Outreach Committee.

Column: Commemorating MLK through Service

Both T.C. Williams campuses — King Street and Satellite at Landmark — worked together on Saturday, Jan. 19, for the National Day of Service and in commemoration of the 57th Inaugural Celebration.

Column: GOP’s Naked Power Grab

Virginia’s General Assembly session carries forward; however, this week we have seen the Senate re-tread issues of the past. Earlier this week, the Republicans in the State Senate manipulated their close numbers to force an issue through that Virginians already thought was settled for the decade — redistricting.

Obituary: John Bruce Hammond

After a six-year battle with a rare form of cancer, John Hammond died peacefully while surrounded by family on Saturday, Jan. 12, 2013.

Obituary: Dr. Bernard Greifer

On Saturday, Jan. 19, 2013, Bernard Greifer, 91, of Rockville, Md., previously of Alexandria, died.

Obituary: Gerald V. Godfrey

Gerald V. Godfrey, born March 26, 1938, died on Jan. 20, 2013 at his home in Alexandria.

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Residents Attend 57th Presidential Inauguration

Many brave crowds to witness history.

Local residents were among the hundreds of thousands who left their homes on a cold winter holiday, Jan. 21, to brave packed Metro trains and slow-moving security check points for a chance to celebrate and witness President Barack Obama’s second inauguration.

Column: Gun Safety Among Early Legislative Actions

Though barely two weeks old, the General Assembly Session is already moving at breakneck speed, with multitudes of bills being considered and with ongoing discussions of how to move Virginia forward on key issues including transportation and gun safety.

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Honoring Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr.

“Remember, Celebrate, Act — Dr. King’s Dream for Our World” was the theme of the Alexandria Society for the Preservation of Black Heritage and the Alexandria Black History Museum program commemorating the birthday and life of Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr.

Alexandria Home Sales: December, 2012

In December 2012, 165 Alexandria homes sold between $2,499,900-$92,100.

Alexandria Home Sales: December, 2012

Tuesday, January 22

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Fairfax Families4Kids

Fostering bonds with children.

Nationwide, more than 463,000 children live in foster care. In many states, including Virginia, the number of foster youth has tripled in the last 25 years. As of Sept. 30, 2011, nearly 5,000 youth were in foster care in Virginia, according to the Administration for Children and Families (ACF), a division of the U.S. Health and Human Services Department. Physical abuse is the most common reason children enter foster, but it’s not the only reason. Often there’s emotional abuse, sexual abuse and the parent or caretaker’s inability to provide a safe environment due to substance abuse.

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A Family Made Whole

After a tragic loss, Reston couple creates a family through adoption.

The Granvilles look like a made-for-TV family. On a bright October afternoon, Chris, a computer engineer, is teasing his teenage son, Kenny, about what kind of pet to adopt, while Tiffany sits on a sofa, cradling Elijah, Kenny’s baby brother, who has just woken up from an afternoon nap. “Fish? No way,” Kenny, 15, says. “They just go ‘round and ‘round in a bowl.” Kenny is lobbying hard for a dog or—at the very least—a guinea pig or hamster.

Dancing Life into Books

Upcoming performances from Jane Franklin Dance incorporate movement and storytelling.

Jane Franklin likes to keep busy and to keep her company moving. During the next few weeks, the Arlington-based dance company is performing a number of pieces, each of which depend in movement and music to tell stories.

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Area Residents Attend 57th Inauguration

Many brave crowds to witness history.

Local residents were among the hundreds of thousands who left their homes on a cold winter holiday, Jan. 21, to brave packed Metro trains and slow-moving security check points for a chance to celebrate and witness President Barack Obama’s second inauguration.

Monday, January 21

A 10-Year Mission: End Homelessness

Our Fairfax-Falls Church community is one of the most affluent in the country. Our schools are second to none. We are the home for many Fortune 500 businesses. Even with the challenging economy, our unemployment rate is among the lowest in the country.

Sunday, January 20

Classified Advertising January 16, 2013

Read the latest ads here!

Friday, January 18

Queen of Household Hints to Share Five Essentials Every Home Should Have

Heloise to headline 2013 Home and Remodeling Show at the Dulles Expo Center.

The high priestess of household hints will share her domestic wisdom this weekend at the 2013 Home and Remodeling Show at the Dulles Expo Center in Chantilly, Va. A nationally syndicated columnist, Heloise is one of the presenters scheduled to headline the weekend’s show.

Thursday, January 17

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Defense Propels TC Boys’ Basketball Past Lake Braddock

Titans hold Bruins scoreless for 7-minute, 31-second stretch.

The T.C. Williams boys' basketball team used a 17-0 run to pull away from Lake Braddock on Jan. 11.

Editorial: Transportation Money

Eliminating the gas tax makes no sense.

Virginia, and especially Northern Virginia, is woefully short on funds for transportation. One reason is that its gas tax, a logical way to fund transportation infrastructure, is one of the lowest in the nation, and has remained flat since the ’80s, since it is not indexed for inflation. So the buying power of the gas tax has been dwindling.

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Smart Growth Versus Affordable Housing at Potomac Yard

Clash between opposing visions raises questions about parking on Jefferson Davis Highway.

What happens when the principles of smart growth collide with transit planning?

In Session

The hidden camera footage is shaky and brief. But state Sen. Adam Ebbin (D-30) and Del. Patrick Hope (D-47) believe it will change the momentum of the gun debate.

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Northern Virginia Democrats Finally Get Traction on Voting Rights for Nonviolent Felons

But House Democrats stand in the way of bipartisan effort.

The plight of the nonviolent felon has been a losing cause in Northern Virginia for decades. Year after year, Democrats introduce a bill that would restore voting rights for nonviolent felons. And year after year, the effort fizzles in Richmond.

Wednesday, January 16

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New Theatre for Young Artists To Perform ‘Music Man’

Local students in Bravo@Kat Theatre for young artists’ production.

There may be trouble in River City — but at the new Bravo@Kat Theatre for young artists, there’s only the excitement and thrill of the inaugural performance of Meredith Wilson’s play, “The Music Man.” On Jan. 19 and 20, the Olney Theatre Center’s historic stage will reverberate with familiar tunes from “The Music Man” while 35 young performers from Montgomery County entertain and delight their audience.

Column: Transportation Debate Begins

Governor McDonnell’s transportation proposal dominated the first three days of session. I welcome this long-overdue debate.

Column: General Assembly Gets Underway

The Virginia General Assembly convened in Richmond last Wednesday. So far one of the major issues is whether or not to lift the moratorium on mining uranium.

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The Bare Necessities

LTA debuts “The Full Monty.”

The year is 1992 and unemployment is high in Buffalo, N.Y., where former millworker Jerry Lukowski hatches a plan to earn some quick cash by producing a Chippendale’s-style strip show in “The Full Monty,” now playing at The Little Theatre of Alexandria.

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Steep Canyon Rangers returning to The Birchmere

It's only the beginning of January, but the Steep Canyon Rangers have their whole year booked.

Drop Off Site for Shelter’s Wish List

Jodi Casamo, owner of Casamo Court Reporting and also three large dogs, contacted the Animal Welfare League of Alexandria when she realized that having her office nestled in the heart of Old Town could be a strategic drop-off point for individuals desiring to donate items to the shelter.

Letter to the Editor: Former School Board’s Achievements

Last week, newly-elected city leaders were sworn into office, and seven members of the Alexandria School Board — Mimi Carter, Yvonne Folkerts, Sheryl Gorsuch, Blanche Maness, Helen Morris, Art Peabody and Charles Wilson — ended their terms of service.

Letter to the Editor: Overpowering Gun Lobby

I’m a retired, wounded, and decorated army veteran who was raised during the Great Depression , served overseas in an infantry division in World War II, made the Inchon D-Day landing with the 1st Mar Div in the Korean War, was in the Tet Offensive in the Vietnam War, and also served in NATO in the Middle East.

Championing Lynhaven, Education and Voter Registration

Rosa Byrd: Protecting her neighborhood, improving her city.

Rosa Byrd and her husband Jack have lived in Alexandria for more than 50 years and for much of that time she has been a community leader and champion for causes to make her Lynhaven neighborhood a safe place to live.

United Way Awards Non-Profits $105,300

United Way of the National Capital Area awarded grants to 10 local non-profits through the Alexandria Community Impact Fund a total of $105,300 lon Tuesday, Jan. 8, at City Hall.

Column: Must an Affordable Neighborhood Be Lost?

Soon we’ll celebrate Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr.’s birthday — a day for service. But I want to suggest that it should be a day for justice, beginning in our own backyard. The injustice that my family and our neighbors are experiencing in the Beauregard area is “a threat to justice everywhere.”

Column: Success of Playfest in 2012

Students, staff and some community members all came together to create something meaningful and beautiful for the Playfest at T.C. Williams High School Black Box Theatre last November.

Column: Some Thoughts on Transportation

Transportation funding is going to be a big issue this General Assembly session. The Governor has taken the step of agreeing we need more revenue and tax increases to pay for transportation; but the details of his initial proposal are cause for concern.

Column: GOP Stands in the Way of Voter Issues

As the Virginia General Assembly begins its annual winter session, there are many areas of policy that require urgent attention. As we move forward, attention will be paid to transportation, education, and the way we fund our priorities in the Commonwealth, as it should be.

Two Charged in Stolen Police Cruiser Cases

Alexandria Detectives have charged two men in connection with the two stolen police cruiser cases from December 2012.

New Administrators at Central Office

Superintendent of Schools Dr. Morton Sherman has appointed two new Alexandria City public Schools Central Office staff members.

Lights To Be Replaced At Simpson Park

The City of Alexandria’s Department of Recreation, Parks and Cultural Activities is replacing the existing athletic field lights at Simpson Park, 426 E Monroe Ave.

DASH Increases Service To Community College

Riders on the Alexandria Transit Company’s (DASH) AT6 route will see more frequent service between the King Street Metrorail Station and the Northern Virginia Community College, starting this week.

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Obituary: Willard F. Townsend

Lt. Col. Willard F. Townsend (USAF-Ret.), age 79, of Pike Road, Ala. died on July 31, 2012.

Obituary: Muriel S. Rector

Muriel S. Rector, 90, formerly of Alexandria, died on Dec. 19, 2012, in Kilmarnock, Va.

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Obituary: Edward Arthur Daggit

Lt. Col. Edward Arthur Daggit Ph.D., USA Ret., age 80, of Harrisonburg, Va., died on Friday Jan. 11, 2013.

Obituary: Hilary Carr

Hilary Carr, 62, of Alexandria, died on Thursday, Jan. 3, 2013.

Obituary: Helen D. Anderson

Helen D. Anderson died Jan. 9, 2013.

Tuesday, January 15

The New Year, Same as the Old Year?

Having survived almost four full years from the date of my original diagnosis/prognosis doing what I’ve done, all I should feel is: that anything is possible. I’m living proof.

Importance of Recess

Pediatric researchers say unstructured play can help a child’s cognitive, physical, emotional and social development.

Can climbing on monkey bars help a child’s cognitive development? Can a game of tag boost preschooler’s social skills? The nation’s top pediatricians say “yes” and some local educators agree.

Friday, January 11

Alexandria Home Sales: November, 2012

In November 2012, 181 Alexandria homes sold between $1,670,000-$69,000.

Alexandria Home Sales: November, 2012

Classified Advertising Jan 9, 2012

Read the latest ads here!

Thursday, January 10

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‘Resilient’ Cardinals Beat Flint Hill in Overtime

Bishop Ireton boys’ basketball improves non-conference record to 9-1.

Five Cardinals score in double figures against Flint Hill.

Editorial: More Fodder for Comedy?

2013 session of the Virginia General Assembly will tackle serious issues.

The 2013 30-day session of the Virginia General Assembly begins on Wednesday, Jan. 9. We can only hope that the various legislative proposals do not provide as much fodder for comedy as last session. The Virginia House of Delegates and the Senate of Virginia will offer live streaming video of the 2013 Legislative Sessions, and it is well worth tuning in once or twice.

Week in Alexandria

Alexandria City Public Schools is beginning 2013 with a bang.

Week in Alexandria

Alexandria's historically black American Legion Hall may be headed for the wrecking ball soon.

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One-Party Rule Takes Hold at Alexandria City Hall

All-Democratic City Council members begin three-year term.

Say goodbye to bipartisan government at Alexandria City Hall.

In Session

With the fresh tragedy of Newtown, Conn., haunting the Virginia General Assembly, the issue of gun control is certain to be one of the most emotional topics on the docket.

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Toxic Politics: Northern Virginia Delegation Split on Uranium Mining

Issue pits economic development against environmental concerns.

Northern Virginia may be hundreds of miles away from the Southside community where a family business is seeking to overturn a longstanding ban on uranium mining in Virginia.

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Northern Virginia Democrat Takes Aim at the Gun Show Loophole

Arlington delegates wants to require background checks for all private firearms sales.

Legislators will be dueling over guns this year at the Capitol, with gun-rights advocates set to oppose efforts to close Virginia’s gun-show loophole.

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Mental Health First Aid Seen as a Way to Identify Problems Early

Del. Rob Krupicka (D-45) leads effort to expand training for workers on the front lines.

In her role as a caseworker for Adult Protective Services, Wilma Roberts has seen it all.

Wednesday, January 9

Centreview School Notes Jan. 9

School notes for the Centreview area.

Alexandria School Notes Jan. 9

School notes for Alexandria natives.

Kehoe Joins Living Legends Board

Retired from the military, Bill Kehoe is a volunteer firefighter at the Alexandria Fire Department Emergency Operations Center.

Letter to the Editor: Get Facts Straight

Re: Jan. 13 letter "Replace the Teachers Not the Building."

Letter to the Editor: Loss of Parking

I am sure there were a lot of people enjoying all the events that came with the First Night Alexandria event, then there are the residents who have to put up with all the overcrowding of our streets.

Letter to the Editor: Anniversary of Black January

Twenty-three years ago, on the night of Jan. 19-20, 1990, Soviet authorities staged the falling empire's last brutal crime against their own citizens.

Letter to the Editor: Safety Issues of Shared Streets

The recent letter to the editor by the former chair of the transportation commission reflects how dissent is treated at City Hall.

A Look Back: How Del Ray Changed in 2012

For those who haven’t been keeping up with changes and activities in Del Ray, here is a recap of the past year, from my perspective as president of the Del Ray Citizens Association.

Letter to the Editor: Benefits of Food Stamp Program

We were surprised to read Michael Lee Pope’s article “Use of Food Stamps Skyrocketing in Northern Virginia” in your December 6, 2012 edition.

Letter to the Editor: Taxpayer’s Lament

There was a recent story about city tax rates quoting the mayor, vice mayor and council member Alicia Hughes.

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Pine Wood Derby Workshop At Old Town Hardware

The jigsaw was buzzing. Wood shavings and fine sawdust lightly covered the work tables as dozens of cub scouts and their friends and parents worked on creating a Pine Box Derby winner.

Find Real Estate Sales, Home Remodeling in One Place

How much are those upgrades?

Suppose you were relocating to northern Virginia, found a house that — with some modifications — would perfectly suit your family’s needs, and within hours knew the exact cost of your desired upgrades?

“If It Ain’t Broke…”

Today is a day I feel like writing – not merely one when I am looking forward to having written, but rather one when I am interested and motivated by the process.

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Home and Remodeling Show Comes to D.C. Area

Nationally Syndicated Columnist Heloise and local contractors will educate homeowners.

Whether you’re planning to renovate an entire house, update an antiquated bathroom, create a more functional kitchen or simply add more color to your home, there will be inspiration and ideas aplenty at the 2013 Home and Remodeling Show.

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Unforgettable Spaces

Local designers share their favorite home designs from 2012.

Local interior designers spend their days mixing colors, accessories and furnishings to create chic and stylish rooms. As the new year begins, some local tastemakers look back on some of their most memorable accomplishments.


2013 Living Legend Nominees Honored

The 2013 Living Legends of Alexandria nominees were honored with a musical tribute at NOVA's Winter Concert at Rachel Schlesinger Hall Dec. 6. Nominees, nominators, board members and members of city council gathered for a pre-concert reception followed by the winter concert and formal introduction of the nominees during intermission.

Friday, January 4

Classified Advertising January 2, 2013

Read the latest ads here!

Thursday, January 3

Happy New Year, Keep in Touch

Reflecting and reinforcing the sense of community.

As local, weekly newspapers, the Connection’s mission is to bring the news you need about your community, to give you the information you need to enjoy the best things in and near your community, to advocate for community good, to call attention to unmet needs, to provide a forum for dialogue on local concerns, and to celebrate and record milestones and events in community and people’s lives. To succeed at any of that, we need your help.

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Advice for Seniors on Fitness in the New Year

Suggestions for making and keeping exercise resolutions.

Mary Garner’s New Year’s resolution is to increase the intensity of her workout routine. The 69-year-old retiree plans to seek the advice of a fitness trainer to create a plan to achieve her goal.

The Quest for Youth and Beauty

Spending billions of dollars to improve one’s appearance.

Hiba Hakki reclines on an exam table as a physician picks up a syringe with his latex-gloved hand and points it at her face. He inserts the needle into the flesh around her eyes. She cringes slightly. This is a Botox injection, just one of the cosmetic procedures Hakki undergoes for the sake of beauty.

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Should Virginia’s Governor Be Able to Run for Reelection?

Longstanding ban on second consecutive term to be reconsidered this year.

Virginia is the only state that limits its governor to a single, four-year term, a vestige of the distrust Americans had for executive power during the American Revolution. Now, more than two centuries later, the commonwealth may finally be ready to ditch the longstanding term limit and allow Virginia’s governor to run for reelection.

Wednesday, January 2

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Happy New Year

Thousands celebrate First Night Alexandria, flock to fireworks finale.

Revelers from as far away as New Zealand celebrated the New Year here as a dazzling display of fireworks lit up the Alexandria waterfront to signal the arrival of 2013.

Column: George’s Advice on Role of Party

In his Farewell Address in 1796, giving his final counsel to his country, after two terms as President, George Washington warned:

Editorial: Happy New Year, Keep in Touch

Reflecting and reinforcing the sense of community.

As a local, weekly newspaper, the Gazette Packet’s mission is to bring the news you need about your community, to give you the information you need to enjoy the best things in and near your community, to advocate for community good, to call attention to unmet needs, to provide a forum for dialogue on local concerns, and to celebrate and record milestones and events in community and people’s lives.

Column: Legacy Of Life

Dec. 12 marked an historic occasion in Inova Alexandria Hospital’s long and distinguished history: the 140th anniversary of the hospital’s founding by Julia Johns and a committed group of Alexandria women.