Dear Neighbor,

Earlier this week, Annandale High School Orchestra Director, Annie Ray, received the 2024 GRAMMY Music Educator Award!

Mrs. Ray founded Crescendo Orchestra for students with severe developmental or intellectual disabilities and the FCPS Parent Orchestra for parents of music students to have the opportunity to learn the same instrument as their child.

She was selected from more than 2,000 initial nominations. The award recognizes current educators who “have made a significant and lasting contribution to the music education field and who also demonstrate a commitment to the broader cause of maintaining music education in schools.”

We are so fortunate in Fairfax County to have talented educators committed to providing our students with life-changing opportunities. Congratulations, Mrs. Ray!

Early Voting for Primaries

Early voting for the March 5 Democratic and Republican Presidential primary elections is happening now. You can vote early at three locations:

  • Fairfax County Government Center (12000 Government Center Parkway, Fairfax)
  • Weekdays 8:00 a.m. - 4:30 p.m.
  • Mt. Vernon Governmental Center (2511 Parks Lane, Alexandria)
  • Weekdays 1:00 - 7:00 p.m.
  • North County Governmental Center (1801 Cameron Glen Drive, Reston)
  • Weekdays 1:00 - 7:00 p.m.

13 additional early voting locations will open on Saturday, February 24, including the Burke Centre Library (5935 Freds Oak Road, Burke) and the West Springfield Governmental Center (6140 Rolling Road, Springfield). More information on early voting locations, how to vote, or requesting a mail-in ballot is available on the Office of Elections' website.

In the event of inclement weather, the status of early voting sites will be posted on the County's Operating Status page.

Water Main Breaks

While water main breaks are caused by various factors, including, pipe corrosion, soil conditions, age, ground movement, or being struck by heavy equipment, cold temperatures increase the likelihood of a break. 

When a main break occurs, Fairfax Water’s top priority is to return service to affected customers as quickly as possible. Once a possible water main break is reported, a Service Technician is immediately dispatched to the site to determine if it is a main break and to set up safety equipment. To report a water main break or other water-related emergency, call Fairfax Water at (703) 698-5613 | TTY 711 or report online. You can view a map of active water main breaks on Fairfax Water's website.

Due to recent cold weather, water main breaks have occurred along Commonwealth Boulevard in Kings Park West. As a result, Fairfax Water plans to replace 1.5 miles of existing pipe along Commonwealth Boulevard as part of the 2024 Distribution System Sustainability Program. Field surveying to document topography and utilities is underway and expected to be completed by early spring. Fairfax Water plans to finish designing and permitting new pipelines by fall this year. Construction will begin soon after by Fairfax Water's contractor.

Residents will be notified of the planned work and impacts of construction several weeks prior to beginning construction and my office will share relevant updates for this project.

BLUE Committee Date Correction

In last week's Braddock Beacon, the date for the Braddock District Land Use and Environment (BLUE) Committee's February meeting was incorrectly listed. The correct date is February 20 at 7:00 p.m.

BLUE Committee meetings are open to the public and interested residents are encouraged to participate. Join online or by phone: (571) 429-5982, Phone Conference ID: 730 922 969#.

Yours in service,

Supervisor James R. Walkinshaw

Please share the newsletter with your friends and neighbors. If this email was forwarded to you, consider subscribing to receive Braddock District news and updates.

Continue reading below for more information on:

  • Stuff the Bus
  • Chief vs. Chief Adoption Bowl
  • Inflation Reduction Act Presentation
  • Protect Loved Ones from Scams
  • Crisis Assistance Program
  • February Code Compliance Corner
  • Weatherization Providers

Stuff the Bus

Stuff the Bus began in 2011 in response to a critical need to help restock the shelves of local food pantries after the holidays. This collaborative program is a partnership between Fairfax County Government and local nonprofits. Now in its 13th year, Stuff the Bus continues to support food assistance efforts for families and households. Stuff the Bus has collected more than 220 tons of food to feed people experiencing food insecurity in Fairfax County since its inception.

Two upcoming events are in the Braddock District:

  • Saturday, February 10, from 10:00 a.m. to 3:00 p.m. at the Fairfax Walmart (11181 Lee Highway, Fairfax).
  • Saturday, February 17, from 10:00 a.m. to 3:00 p.m. at the Cardinal Forest Giant (8320 Old Keene Mill, Springfield).

For a full list of requested items, visit the Stuff the Bus page.

Chief vs. Chief Adoption Bowl

The Animal Shelter's Chief vs. Chief Adoption Bowl is waiving adoption fees for dogs 45 pounds and over until this Sunday, February 11.

This one-of-a-kind event pits Police Chief Kevin Davis against Fire Chief John Butler in a Chief vs. Chief challenge to get the most dogs adopted from their teams. The winning team will be announced based on the number of adoptions. Both teams' rosters are packed with adorable talent!

Visit the Animal Shelter's Michael R. Frey Campus (4500 West Ox Road, Fairfax) or the Lorton Campus (8875 Lorton Road, Lorton) to see more than 40 dogs ready to join your team! For more information, visit the Animal Shelter’s website.

Inflation Reduction Act Presentation

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Join volunteers from the Citizens' Climate Lobby to talk about the wide array of tax credits and rebates available for electric vehicles, solar panels, and more on Monday, February 12, at the Patrick Henry Library (101 Maple Avenue E, Vienna) from 7:00 - 8:30 p.m.

Whether you're a committed environmentalist looking to lower your carbon footprint, or a savvy consumer interested in long-term savings, this presentation will explain how to take advantage of all available incentives. 

Braddock Supervisor James Walkinshaw and Hunter Mill Supervisor Walter Alcorn will join representatives from the Office of Environmental and Energy Coordination to discuss financial incentives available at the local, state and federal levels. Registration is available on FCPL's website.

Protect Loved Ones from Scams

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The Fairfax Area Agency on Aging’s Caregiver & Supportive Services Unit is pleased to announce its 2024 Caregiver Webinar Series. The webinar series is designed to support family caregivers of older adults and/or adults with a disability.

Register for the webinar on Wednesday, February 21, from 12:00 - 1:00 p.m. titled Current Popular Scams - Tips for How to Protect Your Loved Ones.

In this presentation, Melissa Smarr will provide an overview of current popular scams that target loved ones of older adults and people with disabilities. Every day some victims are being financially and emotionally exploited by scammers. Learn how to protect, identify, and report these crimes to better protect yourself and your loved ones.

Melissa is a lifelong Northern Virginia resident, who has worked for Fairfax County Government for over 21 years in different capacities and at three agencies. In 2010, Melissa was promoted to branch chief, where she manages building code complaints, unlicensed contractor complaints, and conducts public outreach events. She is a facilitator of the multi-agency initiative, the Silver Shield Anti-Scam Campaign, which focuses on educating older residents about how they can protect themselves from scammers.  

Register today or contact Ayiguli Saifuding with questions at [email protected] or (571) 407-6961.

Crisis Assistance Program

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Do you know someone facing a “no heat” situation? The Crisis Assistance Program helps households overcome energy emergencies that cannot be met by other resources. An energy emergency is determined when a household has no heat or is in imminent danger of being without heat. The open application period for the Crisis Assistance Program closes on March 15.

Learn more and apply for the Crisis Assistance Program at Common Help's website or by calling 855-635-4370. 

February Code Compliance Corner

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Wondering about a home listed as an AirBNB, VRBO, or other short-term lodgings (STL)? Need a nearby rental for family or friends but want to know the rules first? The Department of Code Compliance (DCC) can help with questions or concerns you have about STLs. Learn more in this month’s Code Compliance Corner.


The use of a home for STL - the occupancy of a dwelling for less than 30 days in a row - is regulated by the Zoning Ordinance. Only a resident of the home (including renters with owner permission) can operate an STL and must get an STL permit before beginning rentals. Standards exist to keep occupants safe and minimize impacts on the surrounding community. The Department of Code Compliance (DCC) responds to reports or complaints of STL conducted in violation of Zoning Ordinance requirements or limitations. STL rules include, but are not limited to:

  • An STL unit can only be rented for up to 60 nights per calendar year.
  • Online posts for STL must include the STL permit number.
  • Only six adults are allowed in an STL rental.
  • Events or gatherings of anyone other than the short-term renters, such as weddings or reunions, are not allowed.


STL permits are valid for two years, at which point a new permit is required. Permits can be searched or applied for on PLUS. More information about STLs and permitting is available from the Department of Planning and Development.

Weatherization Providers

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Would you like to lower your utility bills? Is your home uncomfortable or difficult to heat and cool? Northern Virginia Regional Commission (NVRC) is proud to work with the non-profit Community Housing Partners (CHP) Energy Solutions to help improve homes and apartments across our community. CHP Energy Solutions provides no cost, government and utility-funded improvements to increase the energy efficiency, health, and safety of your home. This can include installation of insulation, LED light bulbs, heating and cooling repairs and upgrades, and more! Homeowners AND renters can see if they qualify by calling (888) 229-3714 or by visiting the CHP website.

CHP Energy Solutions is the VA Department of Housing & Community Development (DHCD) designated weatherization provider. All improvements are provided at no cost and are based on a site assessment and program guidelines.

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