Tysons, VA

Morning Notes

Truck of Fish Crashes on Capital Beltway in Tysons — A tractor-trailer filled with 41,000 pounds of frozen fish crashed on the Beltway Outer Loop at Route 7 around 4 p.m. yesterday (Monday), closing three lanes for more than an hour so a towing company could recover the vehicle. Because the trailer was “breached (rendering the fish unsalvagable),” crews ultimately decided to wait until after rush hour to complete the recovery. [VDOT Northern Virginia/Twitter]

Fairfax County Seeks Health Workers to Help with Vaccination Effort — “Since most school public health nurses have returned to schools, the Health Department is hiring approximately 250 vaccinators…in coming weeks to help get the COVID-19 vaccine into the arms of residents as quickly as possible. Vaccinators will be assigned to work at Health Department vaccination sites that operate six days a week, including the Fairfax County Government Center.” [Fairfax County Health Department]

Virginia Bans Single-Use Styrofoam — Gov. Ralph Northam signed a law yesterday prohibiting the use of polystyrene foam cups and takeout containers. The ban takes effect in July 2023 for food chains with 20 or more locations and in July 2025 for all other food vendors, nonprofits, schools, and local governments. [Patch]

Tysons Digital Security Company Raises $100 MillionID.me officially announced yesterday that it has raised $100 million in new funding, as first reported by Washington Business Journal. The company is now valued at $1.5 billion and says it will use the funding “to build out its secure digital identity network by attracting top talent and expanding the number of businesses and government agencies it serves.” [ID.me]

Photo courtesy Dulles Corridor Metrorail Project

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The Weekly Planner is a roundup of interesting events coming up over the next week in the Tysons area.

We’ve searched the web for events of note in Tysons, Vienna, Merrifield, McLean, and Falls Church. Know of any we’ve missed? Tell us!

Monday (March 15)

  • Honoring Women Warriors (Online) — 7-8:30 p.m. — In celebration of March as Women’s History Month, the Fairfax County Commission for Women is hosting a virtual event to highlight the work of women who have helped lead the county’s pandemic response, including Health Director Dr. Gloria Addo-Ayensu. The forum will stream on Facebook Live, and comments can be submitted before and during the event.

Tuesday (March 16)

  • Mystery Book Club (Online) — 7-8 p.m. — The mystery book group will be discussing The Last Detective by Peter Lovesey. New members are welcomed. Copies are available for curbside pickup at the Tysons-Pimmit Regional Library. Register for the Zoom link for the book club.
  • Bollywood Dance Fitness (Online) — 6-7 p.m. — Join fitness instructor Aparna Rao in a Bollywood dance fitness class. The class is virtual and free to join. No experience necessary. Register one day in advance to receive the Zoom link. This class is for adults.

Thursday (Mar. 18)

  • Vienna Metro Station Improvements Meeting (Online) — 7-8:30 p.m. — Fairfax County and the Virginia Department of Transportation (VDOT) will host a meeting to present the ideas to improve bicyclist and pedestrian safety and accessibility to the Vienna Metro stations. Some proposed improvements include shared-use paths, sidewalks, and two-way cycle tracks according to the project’s website. To join the live webinar register on the VDOT website.
  • “We’ve Got Issues” Teen Forum (Online) — 7-8 p.m. — While it’s hard to see each other in person, join fellow teens virtually to talk about topics like stereotypes, relationships, and more. Program kits are available while supplies last at your local Fairfax County regional library. Register online by Tuesday (March 16) to get the Zoom link.
  • Let’s Talk: Human Trafficking in the Age of COVID (Online) — 7:30 p.m. — The McLean-based nonprofit Anti-Trafficking International is hosting a discussion on how the pandemic has heightened the risk of trafficking, especially for young people. The talk will be led by ATI founder and Department of Justice Director of Human Trafficking Programs Bill Woolf. Contact [email protected] for more information on the webinar.

 Friday (Mar. 19)

  • Virtual Glow Party (Online) — 7-9 p.m. — McLean Community Center is hosting a free virtual dance party. Join online and request your favorite songs. The night will include music, games and other surprises! Open to all ages.

Saturday (Mar. 20)

  • Fairfax County Teen Job Fair (Online) — 11-2 p.m. — Fairfax County will host its annual teen job fair this Saturday. Normally spread across multiple high schools, this year’s fair will take place online over two days due to the pandemic. This is the second of the two-day event. The fair is open to all teens in Fairfax County looking for work, volunteer, and internship opportunities. Businesses and organizations can register for free “booth space” to advertise their available positions. Teens must register online to get a link for the event.
  • COVID-19 Vaccine Registration Information Session (Online) — 2-4 p.m. — McLean Community Center instructor Quentin Levin will teach a class on how to register to get the COVID-19 vaccine for those who are eligible. The class has no affiliation with any vaccine providers. The class will focus on navigating technical issues but does not guarantee an appointment. Check the McLean Community Center website for more registration and to register for this class.
  • Vienna Photo Show — 10 a.m. at Vienna Community Center (120 Cherry Street) — The Vienna Photo Show will be open Mar. 20 through Apr. 17. The exhibit will be open for visitors during business hours, except between 12 and 1 p.m. every day, when it will be closed for cleaning. Ribbons for various categories will be awarded.
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The Weekly Planner is a roundup of interesting events coming up over the next week in the Tysons area.

We’ve searched the web for events of note in Tysons, Vienna, Merrifield, McLean, and Falls Church. Know of any we’ve missed? Tell us!

Tuesday (Mar. 9)

  • Fairfax County Solar Panel Hearing (Online) — 2 p.m. — The Fairfax County Board of Supervisors will hold a hearing on 22 proposed sites for the next phase of the county’s solar panel program. The meeting starts at 2 p.m., but the hearing is expected to start at 4 p.m. and will be available to watch via the county’s cable TV channel and online live stream. Live audio can be accessed by calling 703-324-5300.
  • On Deck with Mercury — 6-8 p.m. at Vienna Community Center (120 Cherry St. SE) — Vienna Town Manager Mercury Payton and Mayor Linda Colbert will answer questions at this monthly community forum. While in-person attendance is limited by social distancing requirements, people can also register to participate in the Q&A session by Zoom, and the event will be rebroadcast on the town’s cable access channel and uploaded to YouTube.

Wednesday (Mar. 10)

Thursday (Mar. 11)

  • Trivia Night at Solace Outpost — 7 p.m. at Solace Outpost (444 West Broad St.) — It’s trivia night at Solace Outpost, and everyone is invited. Teams of up to seven people can compete in the free game to win a first-place prize of a $30 gift card or a $20 gift card for second place.

Friday (Mar. 12)

Saturday (Mar. 13)

  • Fairfax County Teen Job Fair (Online) — 2-5 p.m. — Fairfax County will host its annual teen job fair this Saturday. Normally spread across multiple high schools, this year’s fair will take place online over two days due to the pandemic. The fair is open to all teens in Fairfax County looking for work, volunteer, and internship opportunities. Businesses and organizations can register for free “booth space” to advertise their available positions. Teens must register online to get a link for the event.
  • The Joshua Show (Online) — 10 a.m. and 4 p.m. — The McLean Community Center will host this show of music, comedy, and puppetry by Joshua Holden about “the joy in being yourself.” The show is $15 per device ($10 for MCC tax district residents), and participants must register two hours before showtime.

Image via McLean Community Center

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Tuesday Morning Notes

Pop-Up Florist Coming to Mosaic District — The clothing retailer Anthropologie (2910 District Ave., Suite 100) is hosting a Valentine’s Day pop-up with the florist Studio Fleuraison from 12-4 p.m. on Saturday (Feb. 13). Purchases can be made in the store or as pre-orders. [Mosaic District/Twitter]

Fairfax County School Board Approves CIP — The Fiscal Year 2022-2026 Capital Improvement Program includes construction of a Dunn Loring Elementary School, partial funding for a Silver Line Elementary School, the James Madison High School addition, and renovations for four schools in the Tysons area. The school board approved the package when it met on Thursday (Feb. 4). [FCPS]

Sunrise Senior Living Names New CEO — “Sunrise Senior Living, the McLean company that operates more than 330 senior living facilities, has named Jack Callison Jr. its new CEO. Callison replaces Chris Winkle, who said in December he would step down after more than six years in the role.” [Washington Business Journal]

Fairfax Health District Hiring for Pandemic Response — The Fairfax County Health Department is looking to hire 100 individuals to support its COVID-19 vaccination and pandemic response efforts. Open positions include nurse practitioners, physician assistants, registered nurses, and licensed practical nurses that would join the vaccination team on a part-time, temporary basis. [Fairfax County Health Department]

Fairfax County Public School Trains Teachers for Concurrent Learning — Teachers at Holmes Middle School are learning how to use technology that will enable them to work with in-person and online students at the same time. The training is preparing them for about half of the school’s students to return for in-person instruction on Feb. 16. [ABC7-WJLA]

Photo via Beyond DC/Flickr

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Thursday Morning Notes

Fairfax Connector Reminds Passengers To Wear Face Masks — “Fairfax County Department of Transportation (FCDOT) officials would like to remind Fairfax Connector passengers that they must wear a mask or a face covering, as now federally mandated, when taking public transit or visiting a transit hub in Fairfax County. This safety measure, which has been in place on board Fairfax Connector buses since May 2020, aims to protect passengers and bus operators during the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic.” [Fairfax Connector]

Fairfax County Public Schools to Hold Virtual Job Fair — FCPS is “searching for educators with a strong academic background and a passion to make a difference in the lives of students. To open the 2021-22 school year hiring season, FCPS will host a virtual Instructional Job Fair on Saturday, February 20, from 8 a.m. to 11:30 a.m.” [FCPS]

Sens. Kaine and Warner Raise Concerns About Continued Mail Delays — “From Dec. 19 to 31, according to statistics in the [court] filings that the Senators cited in their letter, Northern Virginia residents received less than half of their first class mail on-time. While the holiday crush is surely to be a contributing factor, rates started dropping in mid-September.” [ARLNow]

Virginia Pauses E-Z Pass Deactivations During Pandemic — For the next six months, Virginia is suspending its policy of deactivating E-Z Pass accounts if they go unused for a year, since fewer people are traveling during the COVID-19 pandemic. The number of users who got a notice that their account would be deactivated last year nearly doubled from 2019. [The Virginian-Pilot]

The Boro Partners with Red Cross for Blood Drive — “#TheBoroTysons is partnering with @americanredcro5 to host another blood drive on March 4th from 9am-3pm in Boro Station (1775 Greensboro Station Place). Donors will receive free antibody testing. Help save a life and reserve your spot!” [@TheBoroTysons/Twitter]

McLean Contractor Buys Fairfax Firm — “McLean-based tech contractor IntelliBridge Inc. announced Monday it has acquired Fairfax-based tech company Alethix LLC. Financial terms of the transaction were not disclosed, but the acquisition will add DevSecOps and cloud services to IntelliBridge (which is backed by Enlightenment Capital), and also expand its clientele to include homeland security, federal-civilian and defense agencies.” [Virginia Business]

Staff Photo by Jay Westcott

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Amazon Web Services, Microsoft, and 25 other technology companies will be represented at a virtual career fair hosted by the Fairfax County Economic Development Authority on Thursday (Jan. 28).

The Cyber and Cloud Virtual Career Fair will focus on the information technology, cyber, and cloud industries. Participation is free of charge for job seekers, and the FCEDA is encouraging professionals of all experience levels to attend. People with security clearances are especially in demand, though that is not a required qualification.

“Our region is a top cyber and cloud hub and there has never been a better time to land a job in this industry because of the thousands of open jobs here,” FCEDA President and CEO Victor Hoskins said in a press release. “We are proud to be working with such a diverse group of companies that are letting us help them cast a wide net to find the right talent to fill these jobs and keep our networks, businesses, agencies and people secure.”

This is the latest in a series of job fairs that the FCEDA has been organizing throughout the past year in response to the COVID-19 pandemic. Previous events included fairs focused on hiring and reskilling, and women in technology.

According to the FCEDA, the first three job fairs in the series “collectively attracted over 2,100 attendees and resulted in 3,100 completed conversations between job seekers and hiring reps from a wide range of employers.”

The tech industry is expected to grow rapidly in Fairfax County in the coming years. About half of the more than 86,000 open jobs on the FCEDA’s job board are in technology fields, and the D.C. area is projected to add more than 130,000 tech jobs within the next five years.

The FCEDA’s job fair series is part of an initiative funded by Fairfax County to attract, retain, and retrain workers.

“Cloud and cyber companies are an important and growing facet of the Fairfax County tech economy,” Fairfax County Board of Supervisors Chairman Jeff McKay said. “I am delighted to see the talent initiative that the Board of Supervisors funded helping residents find jobs and emphasizing the importance of these sectors to Fairfax.”

Because the cyber and cloud career fair will be conducted virtually, candidates do not need to be currently located in Northern Virginia, and some companies are open to remote work options, the FCEDA says.

Interested job seekers can visit the FCEDA’s Work in Northern Virginia website to register and to see a full list of participating companies.

Photo via Glenn Carstens-Peters on Unsplash

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Fairfax County Public Schools will host a virtual job fair from 11 a.m.-1 p.m. on Friday (Dec. 18) as part of its search for classroom monitors and substitute teachers to support the potential return of additional students to in-person instruction in early 2021.

FCPS Superintendent Scott Brabrand reported to the Fairfax County School Board on Dec. 10 that the school system still needs approximately 730 classroom monitors to provide in-person assistance to students. So far, FCPS has filled 235 of the 966 total monitor positions that it says are necessary since first advertising the position on Oct. 31.

“Employment of classroom monitors is critical to standing up in-person instruction,” Sean McDonald, the interim assistant superintendent for FCPS’ Department of Human Resources said.

To fill its staffing gaps for classroom monitors, FCPS is considering letting schools compensate teachers who serve as classroom monitors during their planning periods, though workload concerns present a challenge to that strategy.

“Our goal remains hiring classroom monitors to fill the in-person coverage needs,” McDonald said. “However, in the near-term, schools may be in a position where it’s necessary to ask for teacher volunteers to serve as classroom monitors during their self-directed planning period.”

The county is also looking for substitute teachers, who can work either remotely or in-person.

According to FCPS, 30 teachers and 24 instructional support staff members have chosen to resign or retire as of Dec. 4, and 62 teachers and 13 support staff members have taken a leave of absence this year.

2,933 employees, including 2,020 teachers, have requested Americans with Disabilities Act accommodations, which are open to individuals with underlying health conditions that put them at higher risk of complications from COVID-19. As of Dec. 3, FCPS had processed 2,359 ADA requests.

FCPS has suspended its Return to School plans for phasing students back into in-person classes, which are now only open to about 1,340 students after consistently high COVID-19 case levels in Fairfax County prompted 4,100 students in special education and English-learning programs to revert back to virtual learning on Monday.

However, FCPS hope to resume bringing students back into school buildings starting on Jan. 12 with special education, pre-kindergarten, and kindergarten students. Elementary, middle, and high school students would follow in groups between Jan. 19 and Feb. 2.

FCPS says people interested in attending the upcoming virtual job fair can register online, and questions can be directed toward its human resources department.

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People whose employment has been affected by the COVID-19 pandemic may now be eligible to receive free job training from the Fairfax County Department of Family Services.

According to a news release published on Nov. 19, DFS will cover up to $1,000 in training costs for individuals who are looking to gain new skills in the high-demand industries of healthcare, information technology, skilled trades, public safety, and early childhood education.

Anyone who lost a job due to the impact of COVID-19 and received unemployment benefits on or after Aug. 1 is eligible to apply, along with anyone who was laid off from a full-time job due to COVID-19 and now earns less than $15 per hour working part-time.

The offer of job training support comes as part of a Re-Employing Virginians (REV) initiative launched by Virginia Gov. Ralph Northam’s office on Oct. 30.

Funded by $30 million from the federal CARES Act, the REV initiative aims to mitigate the long-term economic impact of the COVID-19 pandemic by providing one-time $3,000 scholarships for workforce training.

The funds are being administered by the Virginia Community College System and localities in Northern Virginia and Hampton Roads, which, combined, represented nearly 50 percent of all unemployment claims in the state as of the end of October, according to the governor’s office.

“Investing in programs that help people develop skills in high-demand fields is a win for workers, employers, and our economy,” Northam said. “As we focus on recovering from the impacts of the global pandemic, the new REV initiative will give Virginians the resources they need to get back on their feet and help ensure that our Commonwealth emerges from this public health crisis even stronger than we were before.”

The application deadline for the DFS program is Dec. 8, and training must be completed by Dec. 29.

People interested in applying should contact DFS REV Intake Specialist Ziyoda Crew at 571-536-1979 or email the department at [email protected]

Individuals can also apply for short-term training or certification programs at Northern Virginia Community College by certifying their eligibility for the REV initiative and registering for a training voucher by Dec. 14.

Photo via Bruce Mars/Unsplash

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Updated on 12/1/2020 — The Church Street Holiday Stroll was moved online this year. The live stream of the event can still be viewed on the Town of Vienna’s Facebook page. Tysons Reporter apologizes for any confusion or inconvenience caused by the outdated information in the Weekly Planner.

The Weekly Planner is a roundup of interesting events coming up over the next week in the Tysons area.

We’ve searched the web for events of note in Tysons, Vienna, Merrifield, McLean and Falls Church. Know of any we’ve missed? Tell us!

Monday (Nov. 30)

  • Church Street Holiday Stroll — 6-8:30 p.m. at Vienna’s Historic Church St. (131 Church St.) — Enjoy favorite holiday tunes performed by school choruses and others, along with s’mores, children’s activities, and more, the website says.

Tuesday (Dec. 1)

  • Holiday Gingerbread Decorating (Dec. 1-25) — 6:30-8 p.m. at McLean Community Center (1234 Ingleside Ave.) — McLean Community Center will provide a pre-built gingerbread house, traditional candy decorations, and frosting. To register, use this link.
  • Children’s Book Writing and Publishing Workshop (Online) — 7-9 p.m. — Learn how to effectively write, publish, and market a children’s book with a masterclass from Global Book Publishing CEO Sush Dutta. To register, use this link.

Thursday (Dec. 3)

  • The Boro Howliday Series — 5:30-7 p.m. at Boro Park (8350 Broad St.) — Pets and their owners can enjoy a dog pop-up zone. Toys and treats will be provided for the dogs, and guests can enjoy treats as well with specialty seasonal warm beverages, the website says.

Friday (Dec. 4)

  • Fairfax Virtual Employment Expo (Online) — 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. — In lieu of its usual employment expo in Fairfax County, the Jewish Council for the Aging of Greater Washington is hosting several virtual events. Job seekers of age 50 or more can attend workshops and network with employers. To register, use this link.

Saturday (Dec. 5)

  • McLean Holiday Arts & Crafts Festival (December 5-6) — 9 a.m to 5 p.m. — The McLean Holiday Art & Crafts Festival is a juried arts show. See behind the scenes and watch how these artists create their masterpieces. Support the arts and buy a unique gift for someone special, the website said. Admission is free. To register, use this link.
  • Cookies with Santa — 11 a.m. to 1:45 p.m. at Vienna Volunteer Fire Department (400 Center St. S.) — Share holiday wishes and Mrs. Claus’s delicious holiday cookies with the jolly ol’ elf, the website said. The cost is $5 per person. To register, use this link.

Staff photo by Ashley Hopko

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ID.me will hire 1,000 new workers in Northern Virginia over the next year, the McLean-based identity verification provider announced this morning.

With many workplaces going virtual this year amid the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic, ID.me has experienced significant growth that has enabled it to hire over 300 new employees and open two new office locations in Tysons since the start of 2020, according to a press release.

“Since the onset of the pandemic, ID.me has experienced explosive growth as consumers have shifted the majority of their shopping, banking, healthcare, and government interactions online due to social distancing protocols,” the company said.

While ID.me’s offices are currently closed except to essential workers, the company plans to expand its workforce through the end of 2021 with openings in its engineering, sales and marketing, and customer support departments.

Originally a military-focused startup called TroopSwap, ID.me launched in 2013 as an online network designed to let people more easily and securely share and authenticate their identity.

In addition to serving individuals and businesses, the company’s clients include federal and state government agencies, such as the U.S. Department of Veteran Affairs, the Treasury Department and the Social Security Administration, according to ID.me public relations and communications manager Nicholas Michael.

ID.me opened two new offices in Tysons earlier this year to accommodate a larger workforce.

All employees are given “generous” benefits that include sponsored healthcare plans, unlimited paid time off, and three months of parental leave. ID.me also allows employees to participate in its stock option plan, the company says.

“We are looking for candidates that are not only passionate about technology but are motivated to help make billions of people’s lives better with more trust and convenience online,” ID.me founder and CEO Blake Hall said.

Photo by Avel Chuklanov on Unsplash

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