Around F.C.

Community News & Notes: January 12th – 18th

VA DMV Connect Coming to the American Legion Building

The Falls Church City DMV Connect visit is held twice a month, usually for 10 days, on 5 consecutive days of one week, and then 5 days of the next week (frequently it’s the 2nd and 3rd weeks of the month) at the American Legion Building, Post 130, located next to the W & OD Bike Trail, at 400 N. Oak St, Falls Church, VA 22046. The Connect’s hours are from 9:30 a.m. — 3:30 p.m. They close for lunch for one hour from 12:30 to 1:30. It is mostly by appointment, through the DMV’s website under “DMV2Go or DMV Connect” and then under “Falls Church American Legion,” but the DMV Connect staff can usually accommodate walk-ins, so please do come by.  Walk-in opportunities can occur when there are cancellations, no-shows,  and overbookings. 

Members of City Council and the Library Board of Trustees tour the Mary Riley Styles Public Library, which opened after extensive renovation last Fall. Pictured (left to right): Library Board Member Molly Novotny, Library Director Jennifer Carroll, Mayor David Tarter, Library Board Member Jessie Labukas, Councilmember and Library Board Liaison Marybeth Connolly, Library Board Chair Jeff Peterson, Vice Mayor Letty Hardi, and Councilmembers David Snyder and Caroline Lian. (Photo: Brian Reach)

Tysons Corner & ArtsFairfax Announce Afghan Public Art

Tysons Corner Center, in partnership with nonprofit  ArtsFairfax, launched a call for local artists last year to showcase area talents in the region’s most prestigious shopping destination. ArtsFairfax, the designated local agency supporting arts activities and opportunities in Fairfax County, accepted and reviewed applications for artists, teams, or organizations to activate several spaces throughout the center in 2023.

Tysons Corner Center and ArtsFairfax selected ArtLords to be the first art group to debut its exhibition in the center. A global collective of self-styled “artivists,” ArtLords is dedicated to promoting peace through exhibiting artwork to exemplify culture, social, and political issues through street art. The artwork located on level 2 by Macy’s consists of 30 original pieces to be on display through February 2023 and was kicked off with an opening reception on Thursday, January 5.

ArtLords Curator and President Omaid Sharifi has selected thirty artworks representing the wide range of paintings from ArtLords artists. The artworks are in varied sizes, styles, media, and each one tells a different and fascinating story. The artworks range from paintings 36 by 24 inches oil on canvas to 16 by 12 inches acrylic on wood and rare miniature paintings.

The paintings were rescued from Afghanistan when the Taliban took over in August 2021. The artworks have travelled from Afghanistan to Uzbekistan to Turkey to France to the United States. Additionally, some of the paintings are painted by the recently evacuated artists of ArtLords from Afghanistan who are settled in North America.

F.C. Offers Christmas Tree Disposal Info

In the City of Falls Church, Christmas trees are collected for free on Wednesdays in January and February. Plastic bags, rope, tinsel and other decorations should be removed.

For Fairfax County collection customers outside towns like Vienna, Christmas trees will be collected from Jan. 2 to 13. Lights, decorations and stands must be removed to ensure trees will be collected. After Jan. 13, schedule a brush special collection for Christmas tree removal.

If one doesn’t receive curbside collection services from the City of Falls Church or Fairfax County, check collection policies with a private hauler. The City of Falls Church says residents of apartments and condominiums with private trash and recycling services should take Christmas trees to the I-66 Transfer Station, 4618 W. Ox Road, Fairfax, VA.

“ColorLove” On View at F.C. Arts

Forty artists’ boldest, brightest works of art are featured in the multimedia exhibition, ColorLove, on view at Falls Church Arts gallery from January 14 to February 26. The all-media show will open at 7:30 on Saturday, January 14, with an artists’ reception. The Juror’s Choice Award will be presented at that time. Participating artists will be on hand to answer questions about their process or inspiration. Members of the public are invited.

A Juror’s Choice Award and People’s Choice Award were made possible by a donation from DuBro Architects + Builders, 429 S. Maple Avenue, Falls Church, VA 22046. The People’s Choice Award will be announced on February 4, based on votes from visitors to the gallery.

Juror Sharon Malley described the forty-one–piece show as a “a feast for the eyes, representing a range of subjects, media, and design elements used by local artists. The works include abstract expression, representational, and graphic design, in oils, acrylics, mixed media, fabrics, glass sculpture, and photography.” The two- and three-dimensional works include everyday scenes, florals, landscapes, abstracts and otherworldly depictions in intense colors from a wide range of media.

City Surpasses Greenhouse Gas Emissions Goal

Greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions in the City of Falls Church have reduced by 22 percent since 2005, according to the Metropolitan Washington Council of Governments’ (COG) Community-Wide Greenhouse Gas Emissions Inventory Summaries. This achievement surpasses a goal set in the City’s 2017 Community Energy Plan. 

Despite an estimated 34 percent population growth between 2005 — 2020, the City reduced emissions through a cleaner electrical grid and better efficiency on several fronts.

New Vehicle Charging Fees Coming Soon

Starting February 1, 2023, the City will implement a new fee structure for its electric vehicle (EV) charging stations. This new fee structure is intended to encourage EV use (first hour free), recoup costs to the City (per kWh charge after the first hour), and increase turnover to make stations available to other users (move vehicle fee after charging is complete). 

Access to the charging stations will require the SemaConnect app, which can be downloaded to your smartphone (iOS or Google).

Signature Theatre Announces 3 Plays for New Series

Signature Theatre is thrilled to announce that works by local playwrights Audrey Cefaly, Jennifer Barclay and Nayna Agrawal have been selected for the 2023 season of SigWorks: Monday Night New Play Readings. Their plays, “Trouble (at the Vista View Mobile Home Estates)” (Audrey Cefaly), “Behave Yourself” (Jennifer Barclay) and “Dharma” (Nayna Agrawal) will be read on February 6, March 27 and June 5, respectively. Free tickets are required for attending either in-person at Ali’s Bar or streaming online, and can be reserved at SigTheatre.org starting 2 weeks prior to each reading.

“SigWorks: Monday Night New Play Readings” is an initiative which highlights and supports the work of DMV playwrights. This series is an opportunity for playwrights, actors, directors, and patrons to explore new plays in a fun and informal environment. Each reading will include a post-show Q&A with Anika Chapin, the playwright and director. Over the last six years, four plays developed as part of the SigWorks program have gone on to full productions at Signature Theatre including “The Gulf” by Audrey Cefaly, “4,380 Nights” by Annalisa Dias, “Masterpieces of the Oral and Intangible Heritage of Humanity” by Heather McDonald and “Easy Women Smoking Loose Cigarettes” by Dani Stoller. “The Gulf” has gone on to major international productions and was the winner of the 2018 Lammy Award for LGBTQ Drama and a recipient of the Edgerton New American Play Award.

Recipients Announced for F.C. Arts and Humanities Grants

City Council recently approved the recommendations from the Arts and Humanities Grant committee to allocate $44,000 in funding for Arts and Humanities grants for Fiscal Year 2022-2023. The City will apply for an additional $4,500 of funding through a grant from the Virginia Commission for the Arts.

Four proposals were received for Project Grants for a total of $17,300. Four proposals were received for Operational Grants for a total of $29,829.

Recipients include Creative Cauldron, Falls Church Arts, Tinner Hill Heritage Foundation, The CATCH Foundation and Washington Sinfonietta. 

Mosaic Elects F.C. Resident to Its Board of Directors

Mosaic–a nonprofit, whole-person healthcare network that serves people with intellectual and developmental disabilities in 13 states in more than 700 communities–has elected Falls Church resident Sarah Meek to serve a three-year term on its Mosaic Board of Directors.

Meek, an accomplished government relations professional, is the Director of Federal Affairs for CareFirst BlueCross BlueShield in Washington D.C. Meek has represented Mosaic as a federal lobbyist, first through Lutheran Services in America, a national disability network representing faith-based disability services and then through ANCOR, a leading trade association of disability service providers.

“I still wanted to be connected to disability work and long-term services and supports,” said Meek. “When the Mosaic Board vacancies became available, I was motivated to apply, because the organization is rooted in what people with disabilities want and how they can be achieved.”

F.C. Episcopal Host MLK Day Event

On Monday, January 16th at 10:00 a.m. and 12:00 p.m., The Falls Church Episcopal will be hosting an event in celebration of Martin Luther King Jr. Day called “A Day of Action and Justice.” It will be in association with the Tinner Hill Heritage Foundation, The Social Justice Committee of Falls Church and Vicinity, Homestretch and more. 

At 10:00 a.m., there will be a gathering of speeches at the Tinner Hill Civil Rights Monument, followed by the marching down on South Washington Street at 11:00 a.m.

At 12:00 p.m. at The Falls Church Episcopal will host a panel discussion “How to be an Anti-Racist” with panelists The Hon. Parisa Dehghani-Tafti, Commonwealth’s Attorney for Arlington County and the City of Falls Church and The Rev’d Canon Dr. J. Lee Hill, Jr., The Episcopal Diocese of Virginia Canon for Racial Justice and Healing. Following the discussion there will be an opportunity to connect with local organizations to learn about volunteer opportunities.