These stories have appeared previously in the Westbriar Crier.

Mayor's Holiday Reception 12/11/15

When the town lights up for the holidays, Town Hall responds by inviting everyone down for a cup of cheer and some great muchies.

This year was especially nicely done with chocolate covered strawberries, and the usual top-rated chocolate chip cookies, courtesy of the Women's Auxillary.

Music was by the James Madison Madrigal Singers.



GTGCC Elects New Civic Association Leaders

Our neighbors on the other side of Old Courthouse Road, the 575 -home Greater Tysons Green Civic Association, last night elected their new officers.

Because of our proximity, GTGCC and Westbriar have interests which are usually very close. We have worked together on key issues over the years, most notably Save Tysons Last Forest, the Connector bus routes, trails and street improvements. We look forward to continuing this productive relationship with their new Board.

L to R: Lisa Robinson, Board Member; Kalvin Saccal, Treasurer,
Luke Foster, President; Maurice Giguere, Secretary.


Route 66 Upgrade Plans presented to Vienna residents

The Virginia DOT detailed the preliminary design concepts for Route 66 at a Vienna At Your Service meeting at the town hall last night. This is a major project transforming 25 miles of I-66 from the Beltway out to Route 15 at Haymarket.

The plan calls for three regular lanes and two express lanes in each direction, with a 42 foot median for future expansion of the Orange Line. In addition new Park & Ride lots would be added with bus service, and bicycle trails.

Worse before it gets Better

The plan envisions selection of the general contractor in September of 2016, with construction starting in 2017, in stages with completion by 2021. Details HERE.

The intersection with Nutley Street will be somewhat complex, to better serve the Vienna Station.

There will be a total of 11 homes slated for removal by eminent domain, but none are in Vienna.



Westbriar members at the General Meeting last night re-elected all present officers to a four year term.

The proposed Constitution was approved with some modifications, and is available HERE.

The division of former Zone G was approved, as shown HERE, and as an attachment to the Constitution.


Concord Honors
Mayor DiRocco

The Freemason Concord Lodge #307 on Tuesday presented Mayor Laurie DiRocco their Community Builders Award, the highest award given to a community leader by the organization. Lodge Director James Cudney said, "Mayor DiRocco is very deserving of this award. She has quickly become a pillar of the community and has a terrific grasp on what it takes to enrich the lives of the residents, businesses, and organizations that energize our town. She is a great role model and a genuine person. I am proud to call her a friend."

Walking with the Mayor

Join her on a walking tour, which takes place every Friday at 9:30 AM, starting at the Town Hall. Learn interesting facts about our town, as well as insider info on policy items that the Town is considering. A great way to spend a morning. Comfortable shoes mandatory.

Concord Lodge shares space at this historic building at 146 Mill St. with the Pennywise Thrift Shop near the Caboose. Founded in 1910, Concord Lodge is one of the longest continuously operating entities in Vienna.

Music Lovers:
Want to be Astounded?

Amazing talent is sometimes found among the very young. Here's 9 year old Amira Willighagen of the Netherlands, who began singing various classical pieces only a few years ago, without ever have taking a single music or singing lesson.

When she isn't demonstrating her command of music, she is organizing playgrounds for poor children. Click on Amira's image, turn the sound up, and enjoy.



Hunter Mill Supervisor Cathy Hudgins and FCDOT invite you to a meeting on Wednesday, January 13 at Wolftrap Elementry School Cafeteria on Beulah Road, 7:00 PM.

Topic: Plans for improving the section of OCHR at Besley. That is the point where the road crosses the Wolftrap Creek, and has been the scene of frequent flooding, causing nightmare traffic backups for commuters.

For additional information, call Paul Davis at 703-478-0283


Weather Relents, Making a Great 2015 Luminaria

How about this weather? The warmest Christmas on record!

A huge unsettled weather system that gave us two days of rain and tornados across the south and midwest looked like bad news for the Westbriar Luminaria last night.

But the rain bands veered off toward the Chesapeake, and the winds steadily fell. It was a go for light-off, and we had one of the better Luminarias of the last decade.

A Big Thank You to all who joined in to make it happen!

The Luminaria is a tradition that goes back to the start of the Westbriar Civic Association in 1962. It was inspired, according to one of the original officers, by a report by the wife of one, who was a stewardess on a route into Mexico City on the 24th, and was astonished by the sight of the entire city glowing from tiny points of light.

Many US communities add the Luminaria to the holiday lights. But the Mexican connection is undeniable as south west cities such as El Paso, Albuquerque, and Tuscon are lit up nearly 100%


The Luminaria has strong metaphoric dimensions. We in Westbriar see it as symbolic of many hands working together to keep our community the way we want it. Friendly, safe, distinctive, and valuable.

But the metaphor also works to remind us that life is fragile, and we can't win them all no matter how hard we try. Nature often rules. Without the occasional rain-out, we would not be able to be so appreciative and satisfied with our efforts on those clear, calm, candle-friendly holidays.

January 11

Famous Birthdays

Alexander Hamilton

Would have been 260

(killed in a duel in 1804)

Eden Sweden

Will be 1

Reminder ....

New Year Reception

Thursday January 14th, 4:30 - 6:30 PM

Chairman Bulova invites you to celebrate the New Year.
Refreshments will be served

Government Center Forum, 12000 Government Center, Fairfax VA


A Trip to Cuba

Our favorite local Advocate-Author and Durable Visionist, Jenifer Joy Madden has tweeted us an invitation to follow her blog on a new adventure. She wants to see what Cuba is all about before the rush starts and makes it unrecognizable. And she was successful in the first step, which was to get authorization, not so easy yet.

Get your first installment HERE, and we will keep you up to date in the future. Cuba is particularly fascinating for those of us over a certain age, and Jenifer's writings are never uninteresting.


Thomas Jefferson

for 2nd straight year.

Newsweek Magazine has ranked Fairfax County's Thomas Jefferson School for Science and Technology the best in the nation in their latest issue. The list included 500 schools.

Vienna Councilman Pasha Majdi, was President of Thomas Jefferson's Student Body. His reaction to the latest news was more thoughtful than celebratory: "The rankings don't truly reflect the value of the education students receive," he said. "But if there is going to be a national ranking, it's good to see TJ at or near the top."


The Conquest
Half Dome

The apex of rock climbing is free solo, which means no ropes. Nothing.
26 year old Alex Honnold shows how the world looks at 2000 feet where a single mistake means a fall to certain death.

Click the Dome for something different.
It is hard to watch.


Meadowlark: Winter Walk
Lights Program ...
Better Than Ever!

Impress your visitors this Holiday Season with a visit to our best kept secret. Winter has never been quite like this. And each year it gets better.

Check out this video by a Westbriar amateur photographer.

More info on Meadowlark here.


This Saturday ....

Vienna Choral Society presents ....

Harmony and Light
A Jazz-Inspired Christmas

Saturday, December 19, 4:30 - 6 PM

Vienna Baptist Church, 541 Marshall Ave SW
Tickets and More Info


First Year of Silver Line Analyzed

With data in after the first year of Silver Line operation, Metro reports are mixed. Good: Commuter automobile traffic at three key Tysons intersections show a reduction of about 11 percent. Bad: Metro ridership, however, is significantly below 2012 federal estimates. Currently, just over 17,000 commuters take the Silver Line on weekdays. The Reston-Wiehle station is the busiest.

Tysons still has a long way to go. Several mixed use projects are in progress, and the pace of development will continue to rise. By 2030 residents and workers will be about four times present.

Happy Thanksgiving

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 I huddle in my bed and put off the effort of rising,
thank you, Lord that I have the strength to rise. There are many who are bedridden.

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 and bemoan my fate from day to day and wish my circumstances were not so modest,
thank you, Lord, for the gift of life.



Vienna Choral Society presents Animal Crackers

October 24, 2015, 4:30 PM, Vienna Baptist Church

featuring the Freedom Hill Singers Tickets

Westbriar Considering
new Zone

Westbriar Zone G, bounded by Country Club, Overlook, Creek Crossing and Fairway, is currently our largest Zone. The Board of Directors is considering dividing the zone into two smaller ones to share the work more equitably during the Luminaria distribution.

Members, email your thoughts on this proposal.


Westbriar Toddler's Death Under Investigation

The Manassas Medical Examiner's office yesterday has revealed that a massive head injury last Mother's Day was the cause of death of three year old Beckett Podominick, who lived on Westbriar Court with his mother Erin TePaske. According to accounts of witnesses, apparently the last person to see the boy healthy is Kenny Bartley, a 22 yr old man who was convicted of murdering a school official in Campbell County TN when he was 14 yrs old.

More information at WATE, a Knoxville news source which is following events closely. Another report.

Current Vienna Patch release.


Don't Let it

Go to Waste


The power of the sun is enormous. When the sun is overhead, it delivers about one Kilowatt for every square meter. If you could capture all of that, your energy problems would be solved. As a matter of fact, if you could capture even a small part of that free, clean energy, you could make a significant dent in your living expenses. A great investment opportunity.

Actually, you can. The technology is here and now. Prices for solar panels and the equipment to interface to your home circuits and the power grid have steadily been falling. It is entirely possible that your home would be a good candidate for a look into this exciting technology.


Route 66 Upgrade Plans Open to Public Comment

At thethe Virginia DOT unveiled to the Commonwealth Transportation Board its design concept for transforming 25 miles of I-66 from the Beltway out to Route 15 at Haymarket.

The plan calls for three regular lanes and two express lanes in each direction, with space in the middle for future expansion of the Orange Line. In addition new Park & Ride lots would be added with bus service, and bicycle trails.

Worse before it gets Better

The plan envisions construction starting in 2017, in stages with completion by 2021. Details HERE.

October will see a series of local meetings to gather public comments.

Conspicuous by absence is mention of the 35 Vienna homes slated for possible removal by eminent domain.

Community Center
to Close for


The Vienna Community Center on Park St SE will close on September 4, and work will begin on a comprehensive refubishing which may take several years to complete. The project will include expansion with a new mutipurpose gymnasium.

"There is only so much that can be done with duct tape," said the Center's manager, Nick Jones, pointing to a bucket strategically placed in his office to catch rain.

The entire HVAC system, which is over 30 years old, will be replaced with modern high efficiency designs. "It was constantly breaking down," said Jones.

Most of the existing roof will be replaced. The floors and lighting will also be new. The auditorium will be upgraded with an audio-visual system.

As the location for the Parks and Recreation Department, the Community Center is a fairly busy place, offering a variety of programs to Vienna residents. The rennovation work is certain to present challenges.

The Center is also the polling place for Vienna's elections. An arrangement has been made for a shift to the First Presbyterian Church.


Westbriar General Membership
Meeting & Election

Westbriar will hold a membership meeting on Tuesday
Oct 27 7PM Ephiphany United Methodist Church on Country Club Drive at Old Courthouse Road. This will include an election of officers. Hope to see you there.

A flyer will be distributed soon with more details on the issues and election procedures. Unfortunately we reach only about 40% of our membership by our newsletter and list server. The only way we can reach the entire membership is still by something delivered to the door.

Would you like to serve your Civic Association? We have an opening for Vice President: Any takers?

Send in your nomination by October 15 to Elections Chair Beth Corrigan to get your name on the ballot. Self-nominations are absolutely fine.



Navy Federal Credit Union, largest credit union in the country, and Vienna's largest employer by far, will get even bigger. And with the growth, approximately 600 job opportunities.

The present Annex D building will be replaced by a quarter million square foot, four story office complex with parking. An elevated walkway across Electric Drive will connect empoyees with the main structure.

Navy Federal has been mentioned in the Crier last summer in connection with an improvement to Follin Lane, which will add a lane for two blocks to better accomodate 123-bound traffic at the end of the work day.

NFCU is Westbriar's closest commercial neighbor to the south.
Architectural drawing credit: Vienna Patch.


Polling Place


Our Town elections are held at the Community Center on Park Street. However, renovations are scheduled to begin this year. At the Town Council meeting on Monday, July 6, a public hearing met no objections to temporarily moving the polling site to the Vienna Presbyterian Church. The change will be effective for the May 2016, and probably also the May 2017 elections.

The new Solarize initiatives have made solar panel installations affordable and cost effective. Solarize is run in Northern Virginia by the Local Energy Alliance Program (LEAP). Its strategy uses the bulk purchase concept to obtain a lower cost of installation for a group of homeowners.

To promote community support, the mayors of Vienna and Falls Church have undertaken a friendly challenge between our two communities to see which community will have the larger number of installations.

Learn more about Solarize Vienna.



Right for you?

A reverse mortgage is a loan. You are borrowing against your home equity. However, unlike traditional mortgages, with a reverse mortgage you do not have to pay back the money you have borrowed as long as you are living in the home. Housing is usually both the most costly expense as well as the most valuable asset for most senior households.
A reverse mortgage takes advantage of both of these facts. The loan enables you to eliminate ongoing mortgage payments. And for borrowers with sufficient home equity you can also get access to cash to use however you want or need. However, the decision to secure the loan can be complicated and confusing. Read more
See if you are a candidate for seriously considering a Reverse Mortage. Take this 1 minute suitability test.


9-11 Remembered
at Freeman House

Events were recalled by Dan Dellinger, national commander of the 2.4 million-. member American Legion

Mayor Laurie DiRocco, Council
Member Edythe Kelleher

NEW 10/615
Open House
at the

Saturday, October 10, 10 AM to 4 PM at the Vienna Volunteer
Fire Dept on Center Street SE

Climb on the equipment, treat your kids to a Moon Bounce, enjoy free food and refreshments, check out safety exhibitions.

See more info HERE.

NEW 10/3/15


Weathers the Storm

The hurricane was no match for fesivities on Church Street today . The light misty rain was great for the parched lawns, and it did nothing to dampen the spirits of this year's Oktoberfest. The folks dressed for the autumn weather and turned out in droves to munch brautwurst, hoist a brewsky, and meet friends and neighbors at the Caboose.

Oktoberfest is one of Vienna's greatest gathering spots in the fall. Tip of the hat to Vienna Business Association.

A hiding place under the Caboose


October is
Just Around
the Corner....

That means

Saturday, October 3, 11AM to 7PM

Come on down to the Caboose and help kick off the Holiday Season!

Sponsored by the Vienna Business Association. Live entertainment on two stages, beer and wine garden, food, children's activities, and a festival marketplace.

Free Admission. For more info, click HERE.


James Madison High School is on the Move.

Saturday is Tag Day with the JMHS Band as school starts.

Madison is among the top performers in the country. Fairfax County Schools does not fully fund this excellent group, so they will be at your door hoping you will fill the gap.

Please be generous. It's tax deductible and for a worthy cause. A red tag will be left on your door if they did not find you home.


Old Magruders Site

It will be a Chop't Salad restaurant, with carryout service, a walk-in clinic, and two other commercial spaces. At the moment, the three existing businesses at the end closer to Fosters have almost disappeared in the maelstrom of construction. This includes the popular Rexall Pharmacy. They are OPEN however. Just a little hard to find at the moment.


New Art Commission Formed

Vienna has new Arts Commission to advise and assist the Vienna Town Council on matters relating to the advancement of public art in the Town, including the development and funding of a public art program. The proposal for a Vienna Public Art Commission evolved from the research for a M. Jane Seeman Memorial by the Mayor's Advisory Committee.

Want to help?

Residents of the Town or representatives of businesses or professions located in and licensed by the Town interested in serving on the Commission can apply online HERE.