News Briefs: September 10 – 16, 2009

Fairfax Dems Unanimous for ‘Public Option’ Reform

A resolution passed the Fairfax County Democratic Committee unanimously last week calling for “health care reform that includes a comprehensive public option similar to Medicare” and calls for “every Democratic member of the Virginia delegation to Congress to actively support” the position.

Among 15 “whereas” clauses in the resolution, the committee cited health care as “a moral issue,” and quoted the late Sen. Ted Kennedy saying, “We will guarantee that every American will have decent, quality health care as a fundamental right and not just a privilege.” It also quoted President Obama saying, “One of the best ways to keep down costs, provide more choices and ensure quality is a public option that will force the insurance companies to compete and keep them honest.”



Former Marshall H.S. Teacher Dies at Age 59

After a two-year struggle with cancer, Mary Newsom-Schoff, 59, a former special education teacher at George C. Marshall High School in Falls Church, died at her home in Reston on Aug. 22. A memorial service will be held on Wednesday, Sept. 23, from 4-8 p.m. at the covered pavilion in Lake Fairfax Park, in the form of a picnic-style event as she had requested.


F.C.’s Chef Tennille Shines in ‘Hell’s Kitchen’ Episode

Falls Church’s Chef Tennille Middleton, a tenacious competitor on the TV reality show, “Hell’s Kitchen,” put in one of her strongest performances yet in this week’s episode, emerging as a clutch “game saver” with co-competitor Ariel and drawing praise from the show’s frantic host Gordon Ramsey. The show continues next week at 8 p.m. on Fox. Middleton is the chief chef at the Sweetwater Tavern in Falls Church.


‘Project Runway’ Co-Host at Tysons Galleria Sept. 19

Tim Gunn, chief creative officer for Liz Clairborne and ‘Project Runway’ TV reality series co-host, will appear at 1 p.m. on Saturday, Sept. 19, with an exclusive runway presentation as part of the three-day “All Access: Fashion” fashion and trend event benefiting YouthAIDS at the shopping center this month. More information is available at


F.C.’s Abbey Guaranteed Slot in U.S. Olympic Trials

Tom Abbey, a physical trainer at Falls Church’s Vantage Fitness Center, announced this week he’s been guaranteed a slot in the Olympic Trials for skeleton competition for the 2010 Winter Olympic Games in Vancouver.  He’ll begin training at Lake Placid in early October before the trials begin in mid-October. He then proceeds to Park City, Utah for the second half of the trials. Abbey continues to seek contributions to underwrite his training and competition efforts, which can be made at Vantage, 402 W. Broad St., 2nd Floor, Falls Church 22046. For contributions to be tax deductible, checks must be made out to USBSF ATF, and Abbey’s name cannot appear on them.


F.C. Arts Drop Off Deadline for Upcoming Show is Friday

The art and entry form drop off deadline for the upcoming juried sow beginning Sept. 18 is this Friday, Sept. 11, at 7 p.m. Drop offs can be made from 5-7 p.m. both Thursday, Sept. 10, and Friday, Sept. 11 at the Arts Space Falls Church, 410 S. Maple Ave. The show, based on the theme, “The Whole is More Than the Sum of Its Parts,” will run from Sept. 18-Oct. 11.


H1N1 Town Hall Meeting Slated Friday, Sept. 11

The Fairfax County Health Department is hosting a series of town hall meetings about the H1N1 flu virus, including one this Friday, Sept. 11, at 7 p.m. in the James Lee Community Center, 2855 Annandale Road. Dr. Gloria Addo-Ayensu, the county’s director of health, will be on hand to answer questions.