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Michael McMorrow

Stories by Michael

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Farewell to Circus ‘Big Top’

Last chance to see it in Northern Virginia.

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They’re Off!

Arlington: Brunch Preview of Joplin’s ‘Treemonisha’

In a matter of days, joyful singing will burst from the confines of Washington Golf and Country Club, courtesy of Opera NOVA.

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Arlington: Laid Bare, Laid Low

Historic house demolished.

Last week an old house on Minor’s Hill was felled for new development.

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Arlington: A Heroine’s Final Touches

For her grave, to her life.

It is hard to close the book on a hero, and even harder in the case of a celebrated heroine.

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Arlington: A Case of History Passing

Lustron: The forgotten experiment.

A special sadness arises when noticing a family consists only of aging members without child or grandchild or niece or nephew, their string of genealogy reaching its end. Some people, often called “preservationists,” suffer the same sense of sadness seeing a special structure threatened. Very soon, the few remaining Lustron houses in Northern Virginia will suffer losses. They, too, are approaching their end.

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Arlington Photos: Happy 50th Birthday

Happy 50th Birthday

It was quite a day. Artifacts of American Indians were displayed beside children making butterflies of paper and clothespins.

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Arlington: Belated Recognition for a Spy

Alexandria resident honored at her funeral at Arlington National Cemetery.

Many are the unseen heroes and heroines living among us, most masked by their own modesty. One died early this year: Stephanie Czech Rader.

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Arlington Snapshot: Protecting Personal Security and the Environment

Arlington’s Solid Waste Bureau offers “free paper document shredding” every month. Watch old medical records, credit card receipts, tax returns, and the like being turned into harmless confetti. It is enough to make an identity thief cry. Scraps are recycled, so some trees are also saved. The shredding takes place on the first Saturday of the month from 8 a.m. to 4:30 p.m. at the county yard, 4300 29th Street, South (near Shirlington, off South Arlington Mill Road). Next event is April 2.

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Arlington: A Business-as-Usual Election

Lack of competitors for offices changes nothing.

“Surprising” is the way Betty Adelman described the absence of representatives from other than the Democratic Party.

Arlington: Masonic Lodge, Leader Honored

Awards reflect local lodge’s community service.

At its annual state convention last month, The Most Worshipful Prince Hall Grand Lodge of Virginia Free & Accepted Masons bestowed its two highest honors for fraternal year 2014-15 upon an Arlington unit and its leader.

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Arlington: Much To Discover at Discovery Elementary

Meeting construction deadlines, new school welcomes students this week.

A new school often is thought of as “added to” the neighborhood. Dr. Erin Russo, founding principal of Discovery Elementary School located beside Williamsburg Middle School, disagrees. She says the new school is, and will remain, “of” the community it serves. Russo underscores the point by describing citizen involvement over the years between concept and completion.

Arlington Snapshot: Flamingos

Sign of climate change along George Marshall Drive.

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Arlington: Masonic Story Memorialized

African-American Lodge honored.

History finally caught up with Arlington Lodge #58 F&AM, Prince Hall on Saturday, June 6. Arlington County erected a marker commemorating the strong and beneficial presence of generations of mostly African-American men in the Nauck community.

Arlington Police Documented in Pictures

Retired officer writes history of county police department.

Some few years ago, Janet Rowe attended a law enforcement officer convention in Pittsburgh and was impressed with that city’s police museum. On another occasion, she came across a book telling the history of the Alexandria Police Department. Nothing comparable existed for Arlington’s police department. She bided her time and this year took a first step in remedying the situation. “Arlington County Police Department” is now on booksellers’ shelves.

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Arlington: ‘Oakgrove’ or ‘Oak Grove’

A small neighborhood park is rededicated.

“What’s in a name? that which we call a rose, By any other name would smell as sweet.” Shakespeare, “Romeo and Juliet” So it is with Arlington County’s park at North Quincy and 17th Streets.

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TechShop Arlington Celebrates 1st Birthday April 18

TechShop To Host Tours at Open House

Some folks always want to build “it” with their own hands, whatever “it” may be. Inventors/entrepreneurs believe a solid, hand-held prototype will help sell a new idea. All they lack is a modern $1,500,000 (give or take a few dollars) workshop in the garage or basement. Now they have one, here in Arlington, and it is open 24 hours a day.

Arlington's Little Libraries: Take a Book, Return a Book

Front lawn libraries sprouting all over.

The “little free library” movement has arrived in Arlington. It explains those unusual structures beside the sidewalks that look like overgrown birdhouses. Soon, more will appear on county-owned property courtesy of Arlington Public Library.

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Heaven and Earth in Arlington

The best of both for pets.

Many say faith and science are incompatible. But every so often, they appear together in unusual settings. One example is a local animal hospital.

Arlington County Celebrates Hispanic Heritage

Highlighting contributions by the Latino community.

Each September, the President of the United States proclaims “National Hispanic Heritage Month.” Nothing in the document says contributions by Hispanics must or should be restricted to a single month.

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Navy Band To Visit Arlington's Yorktown High School

Concert to include students.

At the upcoming performance of the U.S. Navy Band, the uniformed professionals will be joined by members of the event host, Yorktown High School Band. The free concert will be held in Yorktown’s auditorium this coming Saturday evening.

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Arlington: Scout Project Rolls On

Eye-catching homemade signs caught more than eyes. They also caught a large number of donors living in the Nottingham area, thanks to Marcus Ayoub. Marcus organized nine other members of Troop 647, Boy Scouts of America, sponsored by the local Church of the Covenant, in a bicycle collection project to earn his Eagle Rank.

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And the Bands Played On

Two local high schools reach finals.

“I was absolutely thrilled with [my students’] efforts” in “very difficult conditions for a marching band,” said Band Director Adam Foreman of Thomas Jefferson High School for Science and Technology in Alexandria.

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And the Bands Played On

Two local high schools reach finals.

“I can’t say enough about how proud I am of the students’ efforts throughout the day. It was by far the coldest, windiest, and rainiest day they have had to perform in all year,” said Brian Bersh, band director of Yorktown High School in Arlington.

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‘Property Genealogy’

Researching the life of a house.

When “a house” becomes “my home” it assumes a unique identity. According to George Combs, manager, Special Collections Branch, Alexandria Public Library, that transformation explains the steady stream of visitors, be they “retirees with time on their hands or new homeowners once they have settled in,” seeking what Combs calls “property genealogy.”

Rotary Is All Around

85 years of service, and counting.

In conversation, it becomes clear that Rotary’s idea of “community” is not limited to one’s own city or county, but stretches coast-to-coast and extends to other countries.

First Annual Springfest Arrives

Capitol City Brewing Company had a new idea inspired by the decade-old Oktoberfest tradition: “Let’s invite about 50 local breweries to a festival welcoming spring.” A funny happened. They all accepted. Thus, 2014 is witness to The First Annual SpringFest in The Village at Shirlington.

Ball-Sellers House Opens for the Season

Twenty-five years or so before the Revolutionary War began, an English immigrant homesteaded in what is now Arlington’s Glen Carlin community. His name was John Ball and the small cabin he built, to house the family of wife Elizabeth and their five daughters, still stands.

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Winning National Art Awards

Local student artists triumph.

March 2014 will be remembered by many for its late winter storms. In Arlington, that memory will be overshadowed by the successes of local high school students at the highest rungs in the National Scholastics Art Competition.

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Ageless Beauty Peers over Lee Highway

An eye-catcher on display.

Model T Ford on display at Mr.Tire.

Picture Perfect Pieces

Student art on display at Central Library.

Scholastic Award winning pieces return to the Central Library.