Join Westbriar
List Server

New Join Westbriar
Next Door
Click to enlarge Photo

New 11/27/16

Metro Problems:
Larger than thought

The safety surges have made Metro a rough commute. Some have suspected a bit of grandstanding by the new manager.

Probably not. Turns out that an investigation of the July 29 derailing of a Silver Line train near East Falls Church has revealed lax inspection, falsified reports, and a management culture that discouraged reporting safety issues. The issues are serious enough that the investigations have been upgraded to examine possible criminal actions.

More information

New 12/1/27/16

Counting Down to

Westbriar's signature holiday lighting is gearing up. Volunteers will be around shortly to pass out the candles and bags, and pick up your annual dues of $10. For the new residents, see the Luminaria information.

HELP, Please!
We need special help this year with Zone E. Our Zone Rep, Susan Petrovich is undergoing some emergency surgery, and is currently under the weather. If anyone can stand in for her, please email or call 703-319-0840. You do not have to live in Zone E. Don't let this neighborhood go dark.

New 11/27/16

Featured Viral Video


Have no idea what this is supposed to mean, but it is fun to watch.

Happy Thanksgiving

from the Crier staff
at Westbriar

Even though I clutch my blanket and growl when the alarm rings each morning,
thank you, Lord, that I can hear. There are many who are deaf.

Even though I keep my eyes tightly closed against the morning light as long as possible,
thank you Lord, that I can see. There are many who are blind.

Even though the election may not have gone my way,
thank you Lord that I can vote. Most people in the world have no meaningful voice in their future.

Even though the first hour of my day is hectic, when socks are lost, toast is burned, and tempers are short,
thank you, Lord, for my family. There are many who are lonely.

Even though I grumble about my fate from day to day and wish my circumstances were not so modest,
thank you, Lord, for the gift of life.

New 11/22/16

Vienna is officially


Mayor Laurie DiRocco announced at last night's Town Council meeting that the Town of Vienna has been recognized by the League of American Bicyclists as a bronze level Bicycle Friendly Community. This difficult-to-achieve recognition is shared by 11 other communities in Virginia and a total of 404 communities nationwide.

The Bicycle Friendly Community designation recognizes Vienna's commitment to improving conditions for bicycling through investment in bicycling promotion, education programs, infrastructure, and pro-bicycling policies. DiRocco says: "We recognize that by supporting bicycling we can improve the environment as well as the health and well-being of residents, reduce congestion and automobile parking demands, increase opportunities for residents of all ages to participate socially and economically in the community, and encourage additional choices in travel modes, particularly among seniors and children."

New Final Quarterly Recycling Day of 2016:
Saturday December 3, 8AM to 2PM, Northside Property Yard at the end of Mill Street

New 11/22/16
Vienna Choral Society

Sounds of the Season

Saturday December 17, 4:30 PM

Vienna Baptist Church

Tickets and info



Our Voice in Fairfax, Hunter Mill Supervisor Cathy Hudgins, invites us all to join her Wednesday December 7 4:30 -6:30 PM at her new digs at 1801 Cameron Glen Drive Reston. Come on out, hoist a cup of holiday cheer and some tasty nibbles, meet with her great staff.



The Moon's orbit is not a circle, but an ellipse, so the distance between us is continuously changing. When the distance is the least at the time when the Moon is full, it can appear up to 14% bigger, and 30% brighter.

Check it out. You haven't seen a bigger full moon since 1948, and won't see it as big again until 2034. The weatherman promises great viewing.


Veteran's Day 2016


11/9/16 Hillary Clinton wins
Fairfax County

.... but not White House, as WI and PA tip the Electoral Vote to Donald Trump in early morning. Meals Tax defeated.



A threatening sky was of no concern at the biggest and best Oktoberfest yet. Bratwurst, sauerkraut, pizza, and giant pretzels seemed to top the list of edibles, while our own Caboose Brewery supplied the most popular of the potables.

And who to thank for a great afternoon? One would be Vienna Business Association's Director Peggy James, who was spotted as a reveler along with her dad.

Can still smell the deliciousness of the smokey brats.

Face painting was a favorite.

Some mellow sounds from Fat Chance.

Many opted to schmalze it up with party garb and accessories.


There was no shortage of ways to keep the kids entertained.

Can't wait 'till

Arf! Parties are not just for humans.




Vienna Appoints New DPW Head

Town Manager Mercury Peyton announced at the September 26 meeting the selection of Michael Gallagher as Director of Public Works. He had been serving as the Interim Director since the June retirement of Dennis Johnson.

Gallagher, 36. has 12 years of experience in civil enginnering, and has worked for the Town since 2010. He was appointed Deputy Director last February.

Explaining the Federal Budget Let's keep it simple:

* U.S. Tax revenue (income): $2,170,000,000,000
* Federal spending budget (outgo): $3,820,000,000,000
* New debt (the difference): $ 1,650,000,000,000
* National debt: $19,271,000,000,000
* Recent budget cuts: $ 38,500,000,000

Simple, but hard to understand.

Let's now remove 8 zeros and pretend it's a household budget:

* Annual family income: $21,700
* Money the family spent this year: $38,200
* New debt added onto the credit card: $16,500
* Outstanding balance on the credit card: $192,271
* Total budget cuts so far: $3.85

Now do you get it?


Following the
Blue Line

When planning to build something that involves digging, you must contact Miss Utilities, a group that keeps track of what is underground. They come out and mark stuff: Red for electrical lines, yellow for gas lines, blue for water, etc.

Westbriar's Echols Street has a lot of colorful markings as a new water line is being installed below. This particular stretch has experienced an unusually high number of pipe leaks over the last decade, indicating a probable systemic problem.

At left, workmen excavate to expose the connection point between Echols and the main line running under Niblick Drive. Above, with the work almost done, neighbors take turns rolling out the hot asphalt.

Your Vienna Vehicle Tax is due October 5  
Register for the Halloween Parade by 9/23
Further information.




The 15th anniversary of the 911 attacks was marked this morning at the Freeman House.

A persistant playful breeze made itself part of the ceremony, as it caused occasional roaring noises in the sound system. While this might be distracting in most venues, it seemed strangely appropriate this morning. At times it sounded like high altitude airliners. At other times, it sounded like roaring fire.

Just as Congressman Gerald Connolly was describing his experiences on that fateful day, and said, "... crashed into the Pentagon ....," a particularly strong gust sounded like an explosion.

How Do You Teach 9/11 to Kids that Didn't Experience It? See this story.


Clockwise from top left, American Legion Post 180 presents colors.

Congressman Gerry Connolly contributes some personal memories.

Vienna Mayor Laurie DiRocco reads our Proclamation of Remembrance.

Ron Patterson, past commander of Post 180 adds some moving readings.

VA Delegate Richard Anderson (51st District) delivered the Keynote Address.

Heather Colbert sang a moving rendition of "God Bless America."








Country Fair a Crowd Pleaser

Perfect weather combined with plenty to see made Saturday at the Freeman House the place to be. The theme was a walk back in history a hundred years or so, to celebrate Vienna's farming roots, and see how things were done before we had Giant, Safeway, and Walmart. Kudos to HistoricVienna for a fun afternoon.

The talented Difficult Run String Band kept it hopping with continuous Bluegrass music.

A future homemaker managed to work the washboard and hang it out with clothespins, despite the bright red cast on her arm

The petting zoo was especially popular, with about two dozen kinds of creatures to meet.

A boa constrictor has an interesting feel around one's arm.

A living hive showed what goes on inside.

Churning butter seems close to magic to the present generation.

A young Huck Fynn whitewashes the picket fence.

A mysterious blonde headed robot darted among the crowd all afternoon, amusing most, but sometimes startling little kids.

Noted Civil War historian and author LTC(R) Eric Buckland set up a book signing table for his latest publications.

Buckland is a leading authority
on the colorful local character
John S. Mosby, whose group
could be considered one of
the early versions of the
US Special Forces.

UPDATE 8/21/16


A few finishing touches, some signs and some white and yellow line painting, and the new roundabout was operational last night. A Crier reader reported entering from Locust Street, driving four and one half times around the circle and returning on Locust. "Works great!," he said.

Meanwhile, a stone's throw away, the roof girders of the Community Center's gym are silhouetted against the sky.


Coming Up


The Town has set August for making a roundabout at the intersection of Locust and Park Streets near the Community Center.

Although popular in the rest of the world, we have few roundabouts in the US. And that is a bit odd, considering that they have a lot going for them when compared to lights. They cause no confusion during power failure. But more importantly, they are much more efficient. Nobody waits idly for a red light that happens to be doing nothing for anyone at the moment.

Roundabout Rules are few and simple:

1. Travel the circle counter clockwise as the sign at the left suggests.

2. Cars already in the circle have Right-of-Way over cars that have not yet entered the circle.

3. IMPORTANT Don't do this. It scares dogs.

So, how are they going to fit this thing into the tiny intersection?

Click image to enlarge.

More Information

It will be a Mini Roundabout. The center will be a slightly raised dome of bricks, low enough that it could be driven over by fire engines and 18 wheelers when necessary.

Through traffic will be detoured around the construction via Park Street and Moore Avenue.


2-Way System
Up and Running

NextDoor has already
found 4 cats in our

Members of Westbriar have asked for it, and we now have it!

And that's the ability to talk directly with their neighborhoods. Do you want to borrow a ladder? Report a lost cat? Organize a book club or exercise class? Sell your old golf clubs? Share a great recipe? Advertise your availability for dog walking, or leaf raking? Recommend a painter?

You can do all this and much more. Join us on NextDoor. 100% of Westbriar Civic Association is now "wired" together. Each of our eight Zones is now a NextDoor Group. Much of Vienna has already joined and you can reach out to them also.

To join, simply CLICK HERE. Put in your address.
It will know you are part of Westbriar. Enter your CODE.
Fill out your profile, and say "Hi" to your neighbors.

See this short video for an introduction to NextDoor.

Still the #1 Scam
in this Area

It is the Computer Version of the Nigerian Letter. Twenty one Westbriar residents have reported getting the call, and four have been taken for an expensive ride. Thousands in Northern Virginia have been hit. Don't let it happen to you.
The caller usually has a thick Asian or African accent. "Hello, this is Microsoft calling. Your computer is giving out errors." See More.


Mosquitoes and Zika

Tiger Mosquito

Named for its black
and white bands

Native to SE Asia, it has invaded USA over the last decades, and is now the most common specie in the Eastern and Southern states.


Only a few months ago, we knew nothing about it. The Center for Disease Control didn't know much more. They suspected a connection, but were not sure. But now it is confirmed.

Zika Virus, which causes babies to be born with an unusually small head and brain, is transmitted through mosquitoes found in South America. And more recently, it has been proven to be transmitted by our own local pest, the Tiger. Some international scientists are cautioning about holding the scheduled Olympics in Brazil in August, worried that people will bring back and establish hot zones in other parts of the globe.

Mosquitoes need standing water for their life cycle. Fight them by depriving them of that water. Police your property for toys or other containers or surface shapes that trap rain. Blast out the birdbath with a garden hose every week. The Tiger goes from egg on the water surface to adult in 10 to 14 days. Disruption at any point kills the insect. Working together can eliminate them from an entire community.

Spraying one's own property does not last long, and is environmentally questionable. Honey bee populations are susceptable to the toxins, and bee keepers are concerned.

Never doubt that a small group of committed people can change the world. Indeed, it is the the only thing that ever has. Margaret Mead


Westbriar to Get

The Westbriar Civic Board of Directors voted last night to institute a community-wide social network which will give members the ability to communicate with other individuals, or selected members (such as a book club) or broadcast messages to an entire zone (such as a lost cat). Members will also be able to reach out farther into the surrounding neighborhoods, because this network is growing fast and many parts of Vienna already connect through it.

The network, based and managed in the San Francisco area is called "NextDoor." It has been used to advantage for the last six months by a smaller group in Westbriar. Look for further announcements soon. Meanwhile click HERE for an overview.

"The Pessimist complains about the wind; the Optimist expects the wind to change; the Realist adjusts the sails." William Arthur Ward


Fitness Just Got Easier in Westbriar

Westbriar Civic Association Members get 50% off Fee at Crunch Gym, located at nearby Pike 7 Plaza. Pricing for membership in physical fitness facilities differ. Some have no initiation fees, but a rather high monthly rate. Crunch has low monthly rates, but a somewhat high initial payment.

We visited several facilities in the area and were most impressed with this one, for the convenient location, the cleanliness, the newness of equipment, and the staff knowledge and attentivness. After a few months of negotiating with Manager Paul Harris, we struck an attractive deal. No excuses now for your fitness resolution in 2016....

Still Active in Vienna 11/26/15

"Hello, Microsoft calling....
Your computer is malfunctioning.
We are here to help you

We have reminded you of this before, but it remains, sadly, one of the most active scams at the moment. Another Westbriar resident this week got taken for a ride. Paying good money to a stranger who does nothing for you is bad enough. The real danger of this scam is in the last paragraph below.

When he calls, he sounds real. He is smooth, but he has had plenty of practice.

If you play along a bit, he will have you hold the Windows key down and press the R key. This will bring up a dialog box, into which he will tell you what to type. This will take you to an error log, which will typically show many low level harmless self-correcting errors that your computer logs every minute. This is to gain your trust, and convince you that your computer is malfuctioning.

Then, he will direct you to a web page where you will download software which gives him remote access to your entire computer, so he can "fix things." He will guide you through the steps to marry your computers together. He will pretend to fix things, and perhaps ask for your credit card for a small payment. Then, he politely says "Good bye." During the conversation, he has downloaded the entire documents section of your computer. He will at leisure browse all your communications, banking, and everything else. You shouldn't store your passwords on your computer, but we all do that, and he knows it. He can and will go into your on-line bank accounts and clean them out.

When Microsoft calls,

The Crier is the newsletter of the Westbriar Civic Association. All rights reserved.
Copyright 2011, 2012, 2013, 2014, 2015, 2016
Search: Civic Association Newsletter, Civic Association Publication
track internet visits Unique

Vienna VA

Fairfax County

Hunter Mill District

Cathy Hudgins



Browse other Crier stories
from 2011 to present in
the Crier Archives

In memoriam ...


Our Leadership at a glance


Join our List Server


Have an interest in singing?

The Vienna Choral Society
would like
to meet you!


Free Community Events Advertising

Send in your details, and we will post.


Westbriar Members
advertise their favorite
businesses for free.


Greek * Italian * American Cusine

Authentic  Delicious  Nearby

Westbriar's favorite carryout


Housekeeping Services

Eldercare, Babysitting


Add a little Latin energy to your next party or catered event.


Pure Pasty

Click photo to learn about something deliciously different

The un-burger
Buttery, Flakey, Dreamy

Emmaus UCC

"Many paths, traveling together..."



Call Rick

Full Service Landscaping



...more than coffee



Cafe Renaissance

... for that special occasion


2 great reads ...

... by a local author


How's your roof?

Advanced Roofing

Highly recommended.


Free Counter


Next ISS

Click photo for prediction


Jim Nelson is a Westbriar member and real estate agent with Long and Foster in McLean. He can be reached at













Online Diet Plans Coupon