Around F.C.

News and Notes: September 29th – October 5th

Plein Air Festival Announces Winners

The 2022 Falls Church Arts “Scenes in the City” Plein Air Festival and Quick Draw competitions took place under sunny September skies on Saturday, Sept. 24. Juror Andrei Kushnir selected the following prize winners at the close of the two-week outdoor festival:
Beyer Auto Group Plein Air Grand Prize: “Northside Social” by Rajendra KC (Falls Church, VA)
Founders Row Prize: “Clare and Don’s Beach Shack” by Vicky Zhou (Oakton,VA)
June Beyer Art Quick Draw Prizes: 1st – “First Punkins” by Lynn Lewis (Kensington, MD), 2nd – “Beach Shack” by Glen Kessler (North Potomac, MD), 3rd – “Happy to See You” by Yik Chek Chan (Bethesda, MD)
New Editions Consulting Prize – “Tinner Hill Golden Hour” by Christina  Blake (Annandale, VA)
The Kensington Senior Living Prize: “Same State” by Jill Banks (Great Falls, VA)
Barbara Cram Plein Air Prize (Falls Church Arts)  :  “Morning on North” Fairfax by Lynn Lewis (Kensington, MD)
The Young Group Prize: “To Keep My Heart in Tune” by Marci Green (Ashburn, VA)
Peoples’ Choice Award: “Beautiful Oakwood” by Valentina Yannotti (Geneva, NY)
Juror: Andrei Kushnir
The event drew more than 1,000 visitors with over 400 of them casting votes for the People’s Choice Award. “Beautiful Oakwood” by Valentina Yannotti (Geneva, NY) was the winner. Falls Church Mayor, David Tarter, welcomed guests to the event, and was very complimentary of how the event has grown bigger and better during the past 13 years. Other notable guests included Councilman Phil Duncan, Stacy Fierce, who presented the Barbara Cram Plein Air Prize, and Amy Feather, who presented The Kensington Senior Living Prize.

Photo Courtesy: Roxanne Kaytor

Goodwin Living Hosts Citizenship Celebration

Last Friday, Goodwin Living, a not-for-profit, faith-based, regional senior living and health care services organization in the National Capital Region, hosted events at its two Life Plan Communities, Goodwin House Alexandria and Goodwin House Bailey’s Crossroads, to celebrate team members and their family members who recently achieved their U.S. Citizenship or started on their path to citizenship through the Goodwin Living citizenship grant program.
The celebratory events featured panel discussions with team members and their family members who have participated in the program, a video message from Sen. Mark Warner (D-VA) and congratulatory letters for team members from Sen. Tim Kaine (D-VA). U.S. Rep. Don Beyer (D-VA) attended the celebration at Goodwin House Alexandria to extend his personal congratulations to the team members who have recently achieved their U.S. citizenship and those pursuing citizenship.
The Goodwin Living citizenship grant program was created in 2018 as a joint effort between residents and the Goodwin Living Foundation to provide team members interested in becoming U.S. citizens with grants to cover the cost of the application fees. Goodwin Living residents also offer tutoring services to help prepare team members for their citizenship exams. In 2021, Goodwin Living developed and launched an official playbook,“A Guide to Establishing a U.S. Citizenship Program for Employees” to show other organizations how to create their own citizenship programs.
In 2022, Goodwin Living announced that the citizenship grants would also be available to one immediate family member for every team member who has served at least one year.

MPAartfest Unvails Musical Lineup

McLean Project for the Arts has released the lineup and programming for MPAartfest 2022, set for October 2, 2022 in McLean Central Park. Featuring everything from nu jazz/progressive soul to blues and a 15-piece youth swing big band, the MPAartfest Music Stage schedule offers something for every age and musical interest.
Curated by Ken Avis—radio host of Antidote (WERA 96.7 FM) and a performing musician with the award-winning band Veronneau—MPAartfest’s musical lineup features artists fresh from the stages of venues such as the Kennedy Center, The Smithsonian Institution, Wolf Trap Farm Park, Blues Alley, and more.
Blues Alley Youth Orchestra will kick off the day at 10:00 am. Alison Crockett will take the stage at 11:00 am. Folk-blues singer-songwriter Bobby Thompson will kick off the 12:00 noon hour. Little Red & The Renegades, performing on MPAartfest Music Stage at 1:00 pm. Ruthie and the Wranglers take the stage at 2:00 pm. Taisha Estrada will close out the MPAartfest Music Stage at 3:00 pm.
MPAartfest will take place on October 2, 2022 from 10:00 am to 4:00 pm in McLean Central Park. A one-day juried fine art show and sale, MPAartfest features the work of visual artists showcasing a wide variety of media and styles. During MPAartfest, McLean Central Park is transformed into a lively landscape of mini art galleries showcasing and offering for sale the work of acclaimed artists from the Mid-Atlantic region and beyond. Along with the artists’ tents and live music, MPAartfest offers food from local restaurants, the New Dominion Women’s Club Children’s Art Walk, and a hands-on Children’s Art Village to engage creative minds and captivate art-lovers of all ages.

LGBTQIA+ Students Across VA Condemn Guidelines

On September 16th, the Virginia Department of Education (VDOE) released its revised model transgender policies. Passed in 2020, the model transgender policies were intended to protect Queer students against discrimination. These new revisions betray the original intent of the law, instead attacking LGBTQIA+ students across Virginia.
“As a closeted student, I wouldn’t be able to come home if my parents found out that I was Queer. I am terrified that these draft regulations will take away one of the few places I can just be myself,” said one student from Fairfax County.
“School is one of the few places where my Queer friends and I can feel safe to be ourselves. Turning that affirming space into a place of fear and bigotry is abhorrent and only hurts students,” said another LGBTQIA+ student from Prince William County.
The Pride Liberation Project, a student-led LGBTQIA+ advocacy organization in Virginia stated: “These revised guidelines will only hurt students in a time when students are facing unparalleled mental health challenges, and are a cruel attempt to politicize the existence of LGBTQIA+ students for political gain. We call for the VDOE to revoke its draft revisions and for school boards to affirm their commitment to protect all students by rejecting these bigoted proposed guidelines.”


Award Winning Painting Memorializes Daughter

A stunning painting memorializing the passing of an artist’s daughter has won the People’s Choice award at the Falls Church Arts gallery.
“Annelise’s Garden,” a 34-inch by 52-inch acrylic by Greg Skritic, won the award sponsored by Cuates Grill, a Mexican food restaurant at 502 W. Broad St. in Falls Church. The painting in the “Wild” show at the gallery continues through Oct. 2.
“When my daughter passed, our family created a memorial garden. This is how I dream of her in her garden – bleeding hearts and Japanese Maples with an Arabesque design that encircles the sun-lit stained glass windows that frame her like a halo,” Skritic said. “On her right wrist is a rose bracelet, while on her left forearm a golden serpent ascends.”
The $8,400 painting was chosen by visitors at the Falls Church Arts gallery at 700-B W. Broad St., Falls Church. The gallery is open Tuesday through Friday from 11 a.m. to 6 p.m., Saturday from 9 a.m. to 4 p.m. and Sunday from 11 a.m. to 4 p.m. Admission is free.
Juror Tara Barr, a painter with a studio in Alexandria’ Torpedo Factory, said the “Wild” show features 45 artworks illustrating “wild locations, wild plants and animals, wild characters, wild stories and lots and lots of frenzied, untamed energy.”