An exploration of things to do in Arlington

Tuesday, July 29, 2008

New Study on Volunteerism

Arlington and the DC metro area deserve a pat on the back! According to the new Volunteering in America study just released by the Corporation for National and Community Service, we are volunteering at a greater rate than the national average, ranked 14th among the 50 largest cities. The metro area is doing much better than the state of Virginia as a whole. Virginia’s volunteer rate is 29th in the nation.

Don’t think you have time to volunteer? The biggest difference in time use between volunteers and non-volunteers is how much TV they watch. So turn off the tube and get up, get out, and get involved!!

Where do you think is the best place to volunteer in Arlington?

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Monday, July 28, 2008

Tallula/EatBar To Roll Out New Menus

From the Washington Business Journal via DCist comes word that Tallula/EatBar is getting a new executive chef:
The previous chef of both restaurants, Nathan Anda, will be staying with the local ownership group, Neighborhood Restaurant Group.

Anda plans to open a butcher shop and restaurant for the group. He is currently nailing down the concept and finding a spot for it.

[New executive chef Andrew] Markert plans to roll out new menus in both restaurants that stick with seasonal fare.
I'm a big fan of EatBar, but I'm happy they'll be getting a new menu. I've had just about everything on the current menu and let's face it, you can only eat so many risotto fritters. I'll be looking forward to EatBar's fresh start!

Now just to get them to make the whole place smoke-free ...


Are you satisfied?

So, according to WTOP , the good citizens of Arlington County are way more satisfied with where they live and the services they receive than the rest of the world.

So, I want to know what you think?

Do you like living in Arlington? What do you like? Do you feel you receive good services from the County government?

Shout out in the comments.

Saturday, July 26, 2008

The Arlington Way

So, I am new to Arlington, and I hope in my posts to share a newcomer’s perspective on Arlington.

First, my background - I am a young professional who moved here, to the “big city”, for a better job and greater possibilities for career advancement. Like everyone else...

I moved here from a small city that considered itself very progressive and on the cusp of doing great things. I worked for the County government there and they liked to talk about “the County way”. I came to understand the “County way” to be a euphemism for entrenched bureaucracy and nonsensicalness.

When I started work for the Arlington County government recently I was disappointed to hear there was also an “Arlington Way”.

At orientation I had the opportunity to meet County Manager, Ron Carlee and he described the Arlington Way as being the doctrine that “each person has a chance to be heard”. Now that is progressive and a great motto for a County actively working towards great things.

What do you think? Is the Arlington Way alive and well or just a turn of phrase? Is this doctrine a good one?

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Thursday, July 24, 2008

Coffee Shop Alternatives

So you don't like Starbucks b/c they are a big chain. And you don't like Murky because they won't serve you the coffee you want.

So what do you do?

How about checking on one of the several small local coffee shops in the area including Arlington's own Java Shack, 2507 N. Franklin Rd, in the Clarendon/Courthouse area.

According to the Washington Post small coffee shops like this are often thriving despite the big, beastly Starbucks.

So what do you think? Where do you like to get your coffee?

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Wednesday, July 23, 2008

Spider Kelly's in Clarendon

I was driving home from a CRM event the other night when I noticed the new Spider Kelly's in Clarendon next to Ballroom. I was about to snap a cell phone pic when an SUV pulled up next to me. Damn gas-guzzlers.

Anyway, reviews are up at Clarendon Nights, Daily Candy and Apples and Bananas. Reviews at Yelp seem generally positive. However, seems to think it's a bit faux neighborhoody and overpriced.

Have you been yet?

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Stay in the Loop - Things to Do in Arlington

If you're looking for fun things to do in Arlington, make sure you sign-up for the What's Up Arlington e-newsletter.

Four highlights of fun things to do in Arlington - delivered to you e-mail inbox every two weeks.

Tuesday, July 22, 2008

Great Excuse for Dessert

Looking for a good excuse to grab dessert?

Portabellos American Cafe, 2109 N Pollard Street is now donating $1 from every dessert it sells, as well as $5 from every gift certificate sold, to Starlight MidAtlantic, a local children's charity.

Sounds like a great reason for dessert to me!
Eat. Donate.

Friday, July 18, 2008

(Cyber) Bar Fight at Murky Coffee!

If you haven't seen this around, (and you probably have), but you check this story out. What do you think? Crazy customer or bully barista?

There's not a great summer. You can just need to read the whole article.

Thursday, July 17, 2008

Cutting Commuting Costs

Smart Money Magazine recently listed bike sharing as one of the top 5 ways to cut commuting costs:

Other cities, including Chicago, Boston and Portland, Ore., are considering bike-sharing programs, which allow registered members to pick up a bike in one part of the city and drop it off somewhere else, says Paul DeMaio, founder of MetroBike LLC, a bike-sharing consulting firm. Washington, D.C. will become the first U.S. city to implement a bike-sharing initiative when — in partnership
with outdoor advertising company, Clear Channel Outdoor (CCO:
12.98, +0.70, +5.70%) — it launches SmartBike DC next month. Membership will cost $40 a year, and each use (for up to three hours) is free. More

Read more about bike sharing

From USA Today: Cities take bike-transit plans for a spin

From US News and World Report: Bike Shares Stalled Across the Country

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Wednesday, July 16, 2008

Thirsty Bernie Sports Bar Review

If you're looking for a good Arlington sports bar, Thirsty Bernie's sounds like a home run

One thing is certain if you visit Thirsty Bernie Sports Bar & Grille (2163 N. Glebe Rd., Arlington, 703-248-9300). You will not miss the game. Any game. Arlington's new gourmet sports bar has 15 flat-screen TVs showing any number of sports simultaneously. There are some over the bar, a few in the dining room, even one facing the parking lot so you can watch even before you walk in the
door. Read the full Post review.

Monday, July 14, 2008

Getting in the Swing of Things at Mister Days

I was walking by Mister Days recently and noticed they've added porch swing-type tables out on their patio:
My immediate reaction was, "Great! There's nothing I want more when I'm drinking heavily than motion sickness."

But maybe I'm being too harsh. Have you tried the table-swing-things?

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Thursday, July 10, 2008

New Arlington Sports Complex - Update.

Four new fields and a big, huge fitness center and athletic complex? This one is near and dear to my heart. Not a lot of action yet, but thought you might enjoy an update on the progress of the new Long Bridge Park.

Board Approves Deal on Sports Complex -

Last night, after years of on-again off-again negotiations, the Arlington County Board approved the final major land-use deal needed to set its plans for the modern recreation facility in motion. Planners say the sports complex, which could cost up to $100 million, would offer dazzling views across the Potomac River into Washington and serve as a spruced-up gateway to the southern part of the county ... More

Sports Complex's Costs Skyrocketing Costs Rising

Now that the Arlington County Board has finalized the last land-use deal needed to build a long-awaited sports complex near Crystal City, officials are scrambling to come up with the money to pay for the entire facility, which could exceed $100 million. More ...

Channel 8 Report on Long Bridge Park


Wednesday, July 09, 2008

CAPS Fan Fest - July 12

Let's go Caps! Let's go Caps!

I love the Caps. Ovehckin, Semin, Greenie, Backstrom. Who doesn't love the Caps?

If you're a Caps fan too, here's a great opportunity to meet some players.

Come to the Capitals Fan Fest on July 12 at the Kettler Capitals Iceplex!

Join the Caps for a day filled with hockey, skating, autographs, interactive games, an equipment sale and much more.

July 12 marks the culmination of the Capitals Development Camp and will include a scrimmage between the camp participants from 10 a.m. to 1:30 p.m. on the Capital rink. S

elect Capitals draft picks will even sign autographs for fans immediately following the scrimmage!

Center Brooks Laich will be signing autographs and the chairman and majority owner Ted Leonsis will join Laich to host a question and answer session with the fans.

Enjoy a free public skate from 12 to 3 p.m. and kids can try the moonbounce, a slap shot cage and an inflatable obstacle course. Slapshot, the team mascot will also be there!


Thursday, July 03, 2008

Where to Watch Fireworks in Arlington

Looking for a great place to watch fireworks in Arlington? Check out this great list that includes everything you need to know including transportation, etc on such great spots as Iwo Jima, Gravely Point, Gateway Park, and the Air Force Memorial.

How about a parade? Several small parades in Arlington to choose from as well. Check out the list here.

Enjoy your 4th!

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Tuesday, July 01, 2008

Another Arlington Establishment Goes Smoke-Free

This time it's Shirlington's Capitol City Brewing, which the Sun Gazette reports is going smoke-free effective today:
Although some customers have complained about the new non-smoking rule - there is even no smoking in the outside patio seating - [Capitol City owner David] von Storch hopes to reach customers who may have stayed away from the restaurant because of the smoke.

“We'll get complaints from someone with kids or who is offended by the smoke,” he said. “There is no good non-smoking area.”
The article paints Cap City as going it alone on going smoke-free, which is odd. Just off the top of my head in Shirlington alone, Carlyle, Luna Grill, and Busboys & Poets are all smoke-free.

For more smoke-free options, check out Arlington County's complete list (PDF) of smoke-free restaurants and bars!

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