Community News and Notes

 ACADEMY AWARD-NOMINATED actor Ryan Gosling (right) appeared with Laren Poole (far left), co-founder of Invisble Children and John Prendergast (center), co-founder of ENOUGH, at a Capital Hill forum Tuesday to advocate on behalf of 1.5 displaced persons being held in squalor-ridden refugee camps in Northern Uganda. At the event co-hosted by Sen. Russ Feingold (D-Wis) and Rep. Jim McDermott (D-Wash), the speakers called on the U.S. to send senior level diplomatic representation to a renewal of peace talks in the region (see Nicholas F. Benton’s column, page 11 of this issue). (News-Press photo)

Speaker to Discuss Progress on Mental Health Reform Law

The Northern Virginia chapter of the National Alliance on Mental Illness will meet June 25 at 7 p.m. to hear the chair of Virginia’s commission on mental health law reform, Richard Bonnie, discuss its progress and activities.

Free admission. The event will take place at First Christian Church, 6165 Leesburg Pike, Falls Church. For more information, call 703-525-0686.    


Tryouts for Traveling Girls and Boys Soccer Teams

The Falls Church Premier Athletics Club will have travel soccer tryouts the week of June 11 for girls rising to U12 (PAC Strikers) and U13 (PAC Attack) teams and for boys and girls rising to U9 and U10 teams for the fall.

Tryouts will take place at Shrevewood Elementary School. Advance Registration is strongly recommended.  For more information about the tryout schedule, contact Sully Hamid at or visit the Premier AC website,  


Job Fair at Marshall H.S.

The Fairfax County Public Schools Adult and Community Education will be hosting a job fair at Marshall High School on June 27 from 6:30 – 9 p.m. Employers will include Dominion Power, United Airlines, MasTec Advanced Technologies and Fairfax County Fire and Rescue. For more information, call Florinda Rosen at 703-658-1265.


Foundation Posts Survey for McLean Residents

The McLean Citizens Foundation is putting out a survey asking residents to share their opinions about future community projects. The 14-question survey is posted on their website at for this month.

McLean Citizens Foundation has funded such ventures as rescue equipment for the city’s fire department and the restoration of the Burke Spring House.


New Gym for Older Crowd

Vantage Fitness, a gym that targets a mature customer base, is opening a new facility on June 11. It provides advanced equipment and a computerized system for tracking their workouts. The new gym is located at 402 West Broad Street, Falls Church. Their first fitness center, which opened in 2005, is located on 442 S. Washington Street in Falls Church.


Helping the Environment

The Arlingtonians for a Clean Environment are hosting a “Solstice Celebration and Work Party” on June 21 from 7 – 9 p.m.  Activities will include weeding out foreign plants, removing trash from Four Mile Run and marking “Don’t Dump” signs on neighborhood storm drains.  Refreshments will be included. 

The event will take place at Bluemont Park on Wilson Boulevard at N. Manchester Street in Arlington.  To register, call 703-228-6406 or email


Young Diplomat

George Mason High School senior Margaret Lipman received a full scholarship to attend the U.S. High School Diplomats Program in Japan this summer. 

The three-week long program is designed to promote international understanding among the attendees from around the world and is sponsored by the Freeman Foundation and AIU Insurance Company of Tokyo.


Splash into Open House

Woodley Pool will have an open house on June 10 from 1 – 5 p.m. which will include free swimming and ice cream.

The pool is located at 7421 Camp Alger Ave., Falls Church. For more information, call 703-641-0729.


CHRISTOPHER CASSIDY of Annandale was one of 12 students nationwide awarded as a “national” scholar in the Toyota Community Scholars Program. Cassidy was selected from a pool of 8,000 students who were nominated by their schools. Rory Kennedy (at right), a documentary filmmaker, was the key note speaker at the award ceremony. Michael Rouse, a Toyota representative, poses with them. (Photo: courtesy Toyota Motor Sales)Toyota Scholar

Christopher Cassidy, a senior at Falls Church High School, was one of 12 students from across the country to be named a “national” Toyota Community Scholar. He will receive $20,000 over four years to study at a four-year college in fall 2007.

The Scholars program, funded by Toyota Motor Sales, Inc. awards scholarships to 100 students in the United States who demonstrate leadership skills in both their schools and communities.   


Film on Comedians Premieres

Glenn Baker of Falls Church will premier his film “Stand Up: Muslim American Comics Come of Age” at the SILVERDOCS Film Festival on June 13 at 10:15 p.m. Two of the comics featured in the movie will speak after the screening.

It will be screened at the AFI Silver Theatre in Silver Spring. For information about tickets, visit


Preserving Wildlife in Congolese City
The Democratic Republic of Congo’s conservation director, Jean-Marie Benishay will be at Stacy’s Coffee Parlor on June 8 from 5 – 7 p.m. to discuss funding for the city Kokolopori using microcredit loans. Falls Church raised $13,000 for the city in April to aid in its conservation of rain forests and wildlife.  Stacy’s Coffee Parlor is located on 709 W. Broad St., Falls Church.

George Mason Hosts College Sports Seminar
George Mason High School
will hold a seminar about the ins and outs of playing for a college sports team on June 15 at 7 p.m. It will highlight a panel of former George Mason student athletes who play, or have recently played, on intercollegiate teams. The panel will cover such topics as time management, the differences between high school and college playing demands and the benefits and sacrifices of playing college sports.
The seminar is open to anyone, especially to students and parents from 8th – 12th grade in the greater Falls Church area. Admission is free. It will take place at George Mason High School’s Mustang Cafe.  For information visit

Fairfax Figure to Kick off Special Olympics
Democratic candidate for Fairfax County Clerk of Court David Miller will give the key note address at the Iwo Jima memorial on June 7, marking the last part of the Law Enforcement Torch Run to the Virginia Special Olympics Summer Games. Members of the law enforcement community will carry the torch from Northern Virginia to Richmond, kicking off the two-day Olympics from June 8 – 9.

Weaver Makes Dean’s List
Amanda Katherine Weaver of Falls Church was named to the Dean’s list at Northwestern State University of Louisiana. She was one of 838 full-time students who earned a grade point average between 3.5 and 3.99.

Mitchell to Play Division I Volleyball
Katie Mitchell, a senior at George Mason High School, will play on Columbia University’s Division I volleyball team in the fall. She will compete with her club team Metro American in at AAU Nationals in Orlando, Fla. June 16th – 20th. In July, she will also play at the USA Junior Olympic Girls’ Volleyball Championship in Minneapolis.

Virginia tech Scholar
Michael Murphy
of Falls Church, a wildlife science major at Virginia Polytechnic Institute and State University, received the Thomas H. Jones Scholarship. The scholarship is awarded to rising sophomores, juniors and seniors.

Brooks Makes President’s List at James Madison
Eric Brooks
, a 2006 George Mason High School graduate, was named to the President’s List of James Madison University for the second time this year. To make the President’s List, students must have a grade point average of at least a 3.9 on a 4.0 scale. Eric is a pre-med biology major who is transferring to Cornell University in the fall.

Perez Earns Highest Honors at Skidmore
Congratulations to Simone Perez, 2006 graduate of McLean High School and Falls Church resident, for making Dean’s List with Highest Honors at Skidmore College in New York for the spring semester. Highest Honors are awarded to students who achieve a 3.67 or higher grade point average.

Young Artist to Attend Governor’s School
Betsy Zimmermann
of Falls Church has been selected to attend the Governor’s School for Visual and Performing Arts at the University of Richmond this summer. Betsy is a rising senior at St. Stephen’s and St. Agnes School.


Salute to Eagle Scout

Jamie Peterson, a junior at George Mason High School, has been named an Eagle Scout of Troup 500 in Washington.


Boys Lacrosse Championships

The Falls Church Youth Lacrosse Club will host the Northern Virginia Youth Lacrosse League Boys U13 Championships on June 10 at George Mason High School. There will be 10 teams at A, B and C levels competing from across Northern Virginia.

The games begin at 9 a.m. and will run all day, rain or shine. Visit for a game schedule and more information.


News-Press Freelancer wins Award

Lois Elfman won Second Honorable Mention in the 2007 Cassell Network of Writer/Florida Freelance Writers Association Writing Competition.  Her article, which ran in the Falls Church News-Press in August 2006, was titled “Park’s Guardian Angel Central Figure in Kushner Documentary.


Graduation Ceremonies

The Congressional Schools of Virginia will hold its 68th commencement on June 7 for the school’s 21 eighth grade students. The 350-student private school is located on Sleepy Hollow Road, Falls Church.