“Super Tuesday” is in March — but Fairfax County is reminding voters about absentee voting and seeking election officers now.
Absentee voting for the 2020 presidential primary starts later this week on Friday, Jan. 17.
The deadline to register to vote in the March 3 primary is Feb. 10. People can check their voter eligibility on the Virginia State Board of Elections website.
Last week, the county announced that it needs 2,100 election officers for the primary.
The Office of Elections especially is looking for bilingual officers who speak Korean or Vietnamese for the Falls Church area, along with Annadel and Centreville, according to the county.
Election officers help set up voting equipment, check photo IDs and tabulate poll results. Compensation starts at $175 or people can choose to volunteer their time.
The Weekly Planner is a roundup of interesting events coming up over the next week in the Tysons area.
We’ve scoured the web for events of note in Tysons, Vienna, Merrifield, McLean and Falls Church. Know of any we’ve missed? Tell us!
Wednesday (June 19)
- Kiki’s Delivery Service at Angelika Film Center — 7 p.m. at Angelika Film Center (2911 District Avenue) — As part of their Studio Ghibli summer festival, Angelika Film Center will be screening Kiki’s Delivery Service — the anime classic about a young witch striking out on her own — on Wednesday at 7 p.m. and Thursday at 11 a.m. Tickets are $14.50.
Thursday (June 20)
- The Boro Summer Kick Off — 11:30 a.m.-1:30 p.m. at The Boro — Boro Tysons is hosting a summer kick off event with food trucks, music, lawn games and “puppy therapy.”
- Summer Reading Party — 7-8 p.m. at Bards Alley (110 Church Street NW) — The Bards Alley bookstore in Vienna is hosting a summer book party with finger foods and lemonade available. Booksellers will be in attendance sharing their favorite summer reads.
- Vienna Stories Book Talk — 7:30 p.m. at the Vienna Community Center (120 Cherry Street SE) — Marie Kisner, a former public information officer for the Town of Vienna, collected newspaper stories about Vienna into a new book called “Vienna Stories 1950-2000.” Kisner is also planning a book signing at the Freeman Store on Saturday, June 22, from 11 a.m.-1 p.m.
Friday (June 21)
- Echosmith at Tysons Corner Center — 3:30-9:30 p.m. at Tysons Corner Center (1961 Chain Bridge Road) — HOT 99.5 and Tysons Corner Center are hosting a free concert with the band Echosmith. The show is scheduled to start for 6:30 p.m. but attendees are encouraged early to grab a seat.
Saturday (June 22)
- Daylily Walking Tour — 10:15-11:15 a.m. at Meadowlark Botanical Gardens (9750 Meadowlark Gardens Court) — The Northern Virginia Daylily Society President Janice Kennedy will lead a walking tour through the gardens showing the daylily collection including a few award-winning varieties. The tour is free and those participating in the tour will have free admission.
- Georgia Peach Truck — 12 p.m. at Merrifield Garden Center (8132 Lee Highway) — The Georgia Peach Truck is planning to roll into Merrifield at noon on Saturday with beaches brought up from Georgia available to be purchased by the box. One 23-25 pound box is $45.
Sunday (June 23)
- Providence Democrats Unity and Summer Solstice Celebration — 4-7 p.m. at Nouvelle Apartments (7911 Westpark Drive) — Following a crowded Democratic primary that saw Dalia Palchik voted as the Democratic nominee for the vacant Providence District Board of Supervisors seat, Providence District Democrats are hosting a buffet and silent auction fundraiser with the nominees and the other candidates. Attendees are encouraged to RSVP early.
Photo via Meadowlark Botanical Gardens/Facebook
Palchik won the nomination for the Providence District seat on the Board of Supervisors, defeating four challengers and pulling ahead of Fairfax County Planning Commissioner Phillip Niedzielski-Eichner by nearly 1,500 votes.
Meanwhile, McKay beat three challengers to clinch the Democratic nomination for the county board’s chair.
Frank Anderson, the executive director of the Fairfax County Democratic Committee, told Tysons Reporter that he was surprised by how many Democratic candidates flooded the Board of Supervisors races, although the large fundraising sums weren’t unexpected.
“I was surprised by how many candidates decided to jump in,” Anderson said, adding that a race like the one for Providence District supervisor typically has two to three candidates instead of five.
With crowded races, some of the candidates’ clashing resulted in an “acrimonious” primary, Anderson said, adding, “It’s expected to be.”
On the Democratic Party’s end, Anderson said that the debates “got awkward,” yet the staff focused on staying “as non-partial as we can” and professional.
The primary also turned out to be expensive for several candidates.
Niedzielski-Eichner and Palchik both neared the $100,000 fundraising mark in the race for the Democratic nomination.
Every candidate for the Democratic nomination to the chair position raised over $100,000, with developer Tim Chapman raising $952,109.
Anderson said that the high fundraising amounts serve several purposes. Beyond paying for resources like campaign staff, recorded calls, glossy mailers and advertising, they also help to give the impression that a candidate has the backing of more supporters.
“When you donate to a candidate, you do it because you believe in them,” Anderson said. “You can’t know whether your dollar made the difference.”
Anderson said that potential donors can become enticed to give money if they see how much others have donated — essentially equating money with value.
Some candidates in the race received sizable checks, either from donations to themselves or from a few key supporters, like developer Tim Chapman who raised most of his $952,109 by donating to himself in the chair race and Hunter Mill candidate Maggie Parker, who received support from Comstock Companies, her employer.
“Not many voters have the time to see who is donating to the candidates,” Anderson said.
(Updated at 10:05 p.m.) School Board member Dalia Palchik won the Democratic nomination for the Providence District seat on the Board of Supervisors.
Shortly after 9 p.m., Palchik defeated Fairfax County Planning Commissioner Phillip Niedzielski-Eichner and three other challengers in the Democratic primary.
Palchik received 39.7 percent of the vote. She will face Republican Paul Bolon in the November election.
Palchik said in her victory speech:
This is part of a movement; a movement of people who want new leadership. People who want classrooms — not trailers — and teachers who can afford to live here. They want someone who is going to fight to protect the environment, to get solar panels, who are going to work hard every day to get us out of our cars and walking, biking, getting around, with access to buses and metro, and into a community that cares and is inclusive. This is the beginning. It’s been an incredible campaign. It was scary. It was fun. We cried. We laughed. And we want to see the next phase of Providence District in Fairfax County.
Palchik celebrated her win at Settle Down Easy (2822 Fallfax Drive), a local brewery that launched in 2018. It was a trendy spot that is representative of a candidate who pulled together a coalition across a variety of demographics.
Even at the headquarters of Niedzielski-Eichner, the runner-up in the race with 23.4 percent of the vote, there was a reluctant admission that Palchik was a charismatic candidate. Several Niedzielski-Eichner supporters noted that they saw her at polls shaking hands and taking selfies with voters.
Del. Mark Keam (D-35th) said Niedzielski-Eichner relied on an older local establishment, while Palchik was able to tap into a younger, wider base of local supporters.
Linda Smyth, the current Providence District supervisor, announced in December that she wouldn’t run for reelection this year, along with several other supervisors on the 10-member board.
Shortly before 10 p.m., current Lee District Supervisor Jeff McKay won the Democratic nomination for the Board of Supervisors’ chair with 42 percent of the vote. McKay beat Georgetown law professor Alicia Plerhoples, who received 31 percent of the vote, and two other Democratic challengers.
For the Virginia State Senate, incumbent Barbara Favola won with 61 percent of the vote, beating Nicole Merlene for the 31st District seat, which encompasses McLean.
Incumbent Dick Saslaw narrowly beat challengers Yasmine Taeb and Karen Torrent for the 35th District seat. Saslaw received 48 percent of the vote.
In a close race, challenger Steve Descano beat incumbent Raymond Morrogh for the Democratic nomination for the commonwealth’s attorney position in Fairfax.
Catherine Moran and Vernon Miles worked on this story.
Half of the day has gone by for voting in the Democratic primaries.
For Tysons-area residents, upcoming retirements have the Hunter Mill District, Providence District and chairman seats open on the Fairfax County Board of Supervisors.
The voter turnout so far in the Providence District is slightly above 4 percent, while the Hunter Mill District is 4.6 percent — both higher than the county’s district average of roughly 3.4 percent, the county tweeted at 1:02 p.m.
Voting kicked off quietly around Tysons this morning.
“A lot of people vote absentee,” John Shivnen, the chief election officer at the Providence Committee Meeting Room polling place, told Tysons Reporter. By 10:51 a.m., 36 people had voted there (7921 Jones Branch Drive).
While Shivnen said the county is expecting a higher turnout than in previous years, he expected the day to stay slow, except during lunchtime and early evening after people get off of work.
The Democratic candidates for the Board of Supervisors are:
Board of Supervisors chair:
Hunter Mill District:
Tysons-area voters will also determine the Democratic nominees for two Virginia Senate seats and the Commonwealth’s Attorney.
The polls are now open until 7 p.m. for today's primary election. While it's a Democratic primary, every registered voter can participate because in Virginia you don't register to vote by political party. #vote #votejune11 pic.twitter.com/b93Vqw9fPm
— Fairfax County Votes (@fairfaxvotes) June 11, 2019
The primaries today (June 11) for Tysons-area voters will determine the Democratic nominees for two Virginia Senate seats; the Hunter Mill District, Providence District and chair for the Fairfax County Board of Supervisors; and the Commonwealth’s Attorney.
Here’s a refresher on who the Democratic candidates are for each race:
Board of Supervisors chair:
- Reston developer Timothy Chapman
- Lee District Supervisor Jeffrey McKay
- Georgetown law professor Alicia Plerhoples
- Fairfax County School Board Member At-Large Ryan McElveen
Providence District seat on the county board, which covers Tysons and Merrifield:
- Technology professional Linh Hoang
- former Vienna Town Councilmember Edythe Kelleher
- Fairfax County Planning Commissioner Phillip Niedzielski-Eichner
- Providence District School Board Member Dalia Palchik
- Rotunda Condominium Unit Owners Association board member Erika Yalowitz
Hunter Mill District seat on the county board, which covers Vienna:
- Former Fairfax County Planning Commissioner Walter Alcorn
- Lawyer Laurie Dodd
- U.S. Air Force veteran and community advocate Shyamali Hauth
- Recent Roanoke College graduate Parker Messick
- Comstock Companies executive Maggie Parker
District 31 in the Virginia Senate, which encompasses McLean:
District 35 in the Virginia Senate, which encompasses Falls Church:
- incumbent Dick Saslaw
- lawyer and activist Yasmine Taeb
- attorney and small business owner Karen Torrent