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Week in Herndon

<sh>Crow Found with West Nile Virus

<bt>A dead crow found in the Herndon area has been confirmed to have the West Nile Virus, according to Dr. Carol Sharrett, director of the Fairfax County Health Department. This is the first positive bird to be found in Fairfax this year. Last year 53 positive crows were found in Fairfax County. The West Nile Virus positive crow was picked up in the Herndon area on Friday, April 19. The state's Division of Consolidated Laboratory Services in Richmond confirmed the bird tested positive for West Nile Virus on April 25.

West Nile Virus is spread to birds, humans, horses and other mammals through the bite of an infected mosquito. The majority of people bitten by an infected mosquito do not get sick. People who do get sick usually suffer a mild flu-like illness. People over age 50 are at greatest risk of serious illness, such as encephalitis — inflammation of the brain, or meningitis — inflammation of the lining of the brain and spinal cord.

As a response, treatment of the storm sewer catch basins within a half-mile radius of the positive crow location will take place. The treatment will not eliminate all the mosquitoes but will help reduce the mosquito population in the area. The product used to treat the catch basins is a naturally occurring bacteria, which is harmless to other insects and the environment.

Citizens can prevent mosquitoes from breeding by tipping and tossing containers of standing water or removing containers around the home where water collects, such as old tires, potted plant trays, buckets and toys. People should also clean birdbaths and wading pools once a week and clean out clogged roof gutters and down spouts regularly. For more information, log on to the county web page at www.fairfaxcounty.gov/service/hd/, then click on "mosquitoes" at the bottom of the page.

<sh>Second Annual Herndon Housing Fair

<bt>The Town of Herndon is holding its Second Annual Housing Fair from 10 a.m. to 3 p.m. on Saturday, May 11 at the Herndon Municipal Center located at 777 Lynn Street in downtown Herndon. The housing fair will provide information to the community about housing resources with the goal of increasing home ownership and conveying home maintenance information. Exhibitors will include mortgage banks, real estate agents and government and non-profit organizations specialized in housing. Workshops throughout the day will focus on home buyer programs, credit counseling, the mortgage application process and home maintenance. Admission is free. For more information, call Pablo Hollstein at 703-435-3182 or e-mail at pablo.hollstein@town.herndon.va.us.

<sh>McNair to be Dedicated

<bt>McNair Elementary School will hold its official dedication ceremony on Saturday, May 18 at 10:30 a.m. McNair, a Fairfax County public school, opened in September 2001. The dedication will include a reception and tour of the building followed by a ribbon-cutting ceremony and the planting and dedication of a dogwood tree donated by the McNair PTA. Guests will include Fairfax County Public Schools Superintendent Daniel Domenech, Fairfax County School Board chairman Stuart Gibson, School Board members Jane Strauss and Robert Frye, Fairfax County Supervisor Cathy Hudgins (D-Hunter Mill), state Sen. William Mims (R-33rd) and Del. Thomas Davis Rust (R-86th).

The McNair Elementary School site is part of what was the 170-acre McNair family farm, a working farm until 1985. The family can trace its roots in Herndon back to the 1700s. Members of the McNair family are planning to attend the dedication and have prepared a presentation on the history of the farm and the family. Following the dedication celebration, the PTA-sponsored Fun Fair will be held at the school.

McNair Elementary School is located at 2499 Thomas Jefferson Drive, Herndon. For more information, call 703-793-4800.

<sh>Auditions for 'Romeo and Juliet'

<bt>The Elden Street Players will be holding auditions for its August production of William Shakespeare's "Romeo and Juliet." Auditions will take place on Saturday, May 11 from 1 to 4 p.m. and on Monday, May 24 from 7 to 10 p.m. at the Industrial Strength Theatre located at 269 Sunset Park Drive in Herndon. Performance dates are Aug. 2 through 25. Up to 30 performers are being sought, 16-years-old and up. Depending on casting, some roles may be doubled up and some roles may be played as either male or female. All roles are open, no part has been pre-cast. Auditions will consist of cold readings from the script. Prepared monologues, not from the show, are encouraged, but not required. A character list and description is available at www.eldenstreetplayers.org or call 703-481-5930.