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Alexandria Bulletin Nov. 13-19

The City of Alexandria’s Department of Human Services is currently accepting applications for the 2008-2009 Winter Fuel Assistance Program now through Friday, Nov. 14. Financial assistance is available to eligible low-income households to help pay for the primary fuel used to heat the home. Applications for assistance may be obtained at the Department of Human Services, 2525 Mt. Vernon Ave., Monday through Friday between 8 a.m. and 5 p.m. To request an application by mail, please contact Ward Pivec at 703-838-0971.

Every year, the Alexandria Office on Women organizes a holiday party for mothers and children who have been recently served by the Domestic Violence Program. If you would like to donate to the Children's Holiday Party this year, please bring unwrapped toys and gift cards to the Office on Women, 421 King Street, Suite 400. The office is open Monday through Friday from 8 a.m. to 5 p.m. All donations must be received by Monday, Dec. 15. If you have any questions, please call Shannon McGregor or Stephanie Romonchuk at 703-838-4911.

The Giving Circle of Alexandria (www.givingfullcircle.org), is holding a Community Forum, "Moving Ahead in Hard Times" on Tuesday, Nov. 18, 11:30 a.m. to 1:30 p.m., in the Durant Center, 1605 Cameron St. Free, box lunch for $15. Visit www.givingfullcircle.org for more.

The Alexandria Jaycees will sell Christmas trees this season, with proceeds to benefit the Holiday Shopping Tour for underprivileged children. This year's lot will be open Nov. 29 until all the trees are sold. The location is the Safeway parking lot in Old Town, 500 South Royal St. The operating hours are Monday-Friday, 6– 8 p.m. and Saturday/Sunday, 9 a.m.– 5 p.m. Prices from $45-$90. For more details or for membership information, call the Jaycees' 24-hour recorded event line: 703-866-7171 or visit www.alexjaycees.org.

The FitOne Studio will celebrate its Anniversary Party in Old Town on Saturday, Nov. 15 between 3 and 6 p.m. The main event will feature a star-studded fashion show, featuring FitOne clients and trainers working the catwalk in the latest exercise threads from lululemon athletica. No ball squats or bench presses, just lots of drinks, dips and special door prizes. Everyone is welcome to celebrate fitness, fashion, and fun at the FitOne Studio located at 814 North Saint Asaph Street. Free admission, for more details contact the studio at 703.548.2223 or visit http://www.fitonestudio.com

The Seminary Hill Association will hold their Annual Meeting on Tuesday, Nov. 18 at 7 p.m. at Addison Auditorium of the Virginia Theological Seminary. There will be refreshments and a business meeting followed by Councilman Timothy Lovain speaking on transportation issues at 8:15 p.m. For more information, contact Joanne Lepanto, 703-823-1241.

The City of Alexandria reminds property owners that the second half 2008 Real Estate Tax and Refuse Fee payments are due Nov. 17. To avoid a late payment penalty and interest, payment must be received by the City or postmarked by the U.S. Postal Service no later than Nov. 17. If you have not received a bill in the mail and do not have your real estate tax paid by your mortgage company, contact the City’s Treasury Division at payments@alexandriava.gov, or call 703-838-4777 to request a duplicate bill.

The City of Alexandria, Environmental Policy Commission & Virginia Tech will hold an Eco-City Open House to provide input about the Environmental Action Plan, which will be used as a roadmap for City leaders, staff, and citizens to implement the Eco-City Environmental Charter. The public is also invited to comment on the City’s Municipal Separate Storm Sewer (MS4) Stormwater Program Plan, a requirement of the Virginia Stormwater Management Program permit issued by the state, Monday, Nov. 17 from 6:30 p.m. to 9:30 p.m. at the Lee Center, 1108 Jefferson St Please RSVP to Eco CityAlexandria@alexandriava.gov by November 10

At the Alexandria Volunteer Bureau’s annual Evening in the Heart of Alexandria, the 28-year-old Alexandria nonprofit announced that its name had been changed to Volunteer Alexandria, reflecting an updated approach to volunteer recruitment and management.

Please note the winter hours for the following history museums operated by the City of Alexandria. These hours are effective from November 1, through March 31, 2009.

Fort Ward Museum & Historic Site

4301 West Braddock Road

Alexandria, VA 22304

703.838.4848

www.fortward.org

Tuesday through Saturday, 10 a.m. to 5 p.m.

Sunday, noon to 5 p.m.

Monday, closed

Gadsby’s Tavern Museum

134 North Royal Street

Alexandria, VA 22314

703.838.4242

www.gadsbystavern.org

Wednesday through Saturday, 11 a.m. to 4 p.m.

Sunday, 1 p.m. to 4 p.m.

Monday and Tuesday, closed

Stabler-Leadbetter Apothecary

www.apothecarymuseum.org

Wednesday through Saturday, 11 a.m. to 4 p.m.

Sunday, 1 p.m. to 4 p.m.

Monday and Tuesday, closed

Runners in Alexandria will once again pound the pavement for the 33rd running of the Alexandria Turkey Trot, held each Thanksgiving morning in Alexandria’s Del Ray community. This year’s five-mile road race will be held on Thursday, Nov. 27 at 10 a.m. at the Cora Kelly Elementary School at the intersection of West Reed and Commonwealth Avenues. The entry fee -- with two cans of food – is $15 for individuals ages 13-21 years and $20 for those age 22 and over. Children 12 and under can participate for $10 at the door and two cans of food. The food will be donated to ALIVE, Inc. Register online before Monday, November 24th and save $5! Visit www.visitdelray.com/turkeytrot. Alexandria Turkey Trot T-shirts

Applications for the following awards are now being accepted: The Women’s Opportunity Awards program aids women seeking to improve their economic status by gaining additional skills, training and education. The women may use the award to offset any costs associated with their efforts to attain higher education including books, childcare and transportation.

The Violet Richardson Award recognizes and honors young women, between the ages of 14 to 17, who make the community and world a better place. The program offers a cash grant to award recipients and the organizations for which they volunteer.

Applications are available by contacting Sylvia Winterling, svlwint@aol.com. All completed applications are due by January 10, 2009.

The Alexandria Commission on Persons with Disabilities (ACPD) is currently seeking input from City residents through a Needs Assessment survey. If you are a person with a disability, a family member of a person with a disability, or a service provider to persons with disabilities, please take the Needs Assessment survey today at alexandriava.gov/acpdsurvey. To request additional information, a reasonable accommodation, or an alternative format, e-mail mike.hatfield@alexandriava.gov or call 703.746.3148, TTY 711.

Every year the Alexandria Office on Women organizes a Holiday Party for children and their mothers, who have been recently served by our Domestic Violence Program. If you would like to participate in the Children's Holiday Party this year, we are asking that your donated gifts remain unwrapped. For the mothers' presents we are requesting gift certificates to area stores in denominations of $25.00. The Children's Party will be held on Thursday, Dec. 18. Donations accepted at the Office On Women, 421 King St., Suite 400, Monday-Friday, 8 a.m.-5 p.m., beginning Monday, Nov. 3. The deadline for having unwrapped gifts delivered or picked-up is Monday, Dec. 15 by 5 p.m. 703-838-4911.

Wright to Read is a program of the Frank and Betty Wright Foundation and is administered by The Campagna Center in Alexandria. The program trains and places tutors with students in the Alexandria City Public Schools who are reading at least one year below grade level. Needed are volunteers to participate in one of our programs. Contact Heather Miles, the program assistant director, if interested in helping children through volunteering. Phone 703-549-0111 ext. 134 or e-mail hmiles@campagnacenter.org.

The Special Education Parent Resource Center holds a weekly Support Group for Parents of Children in Special Education from 10 a.m. to noon every Thursday in the Parent Resource Center at Jefferson-Houston Elementary School, 1501 Cameron St. (Ring the bell at door No. 4).

Each meeting includes coffee and bagels, and an opportunity to share stories, support, information and problem-solving ideas related to special education issues, school and family life. The group is open to parents who have children of all ages with special needs. Infants and toddlers are welcome. Parents are welcome to drop in whenever they can.

For more information, please contact Anne Lipnick at 703-706-4552 (office) or 571-274-2866 (work cell), or email alipnick@acps.k12.va.us.

CrisisLink's 24/7/365 hotline for the Washington Metro Region is currently recruiting volunteers. Come to a training session on Oct. 18. Go to www.crisislink.org, e-mail volunteer@crisislink.org, or call 703-527-6016 to learn more.

The Alexandria Workshop of Ikebana International meets at the Hollin Hall Senior Citizen Center, 1500 Shenandoah Road, at 9:30 a.m. on the first Wednesday of each month from September through June except December and January. Ikebana is the Japanese art of floral arrangement. The group makes Ikebana floral arrangements, studies the history of the art and learns new techniques. New members are welcome. For more information call Julie Cimino at 202-544-5331.

The Sexual Assault Response and Awareness (SARA) program is looking for compassionate listeners, both English speaking and bilingual, who would be comfortable talking to sexual assault survivors and their families. The next SARA training is scheduled to begin in early October and meets two evenings a week from 6:30-9:30 p.m. and on two Saturday mornings. For more information or to register for the SARA training, contact Stacey C. McCullough at 703-838-5030 or HYPERLINK "mailto:stacey.mccullough@alexandriava.gov"stacey.mccullough@alexandriava.gov.

The Alexandria Community Services Board is in need of volunteers to serve in the following positions:

* Friends of the Alexandria Mental Health Center Board Members: Friends is seeking new members who will take an active role in fund-raising, building relationships with the business community and helping coordinate Friends community events. The Board meets one Wednesday evening every other month with occasional subcommittee meetings and additional time required for leading or assisting with projects.

* Mural Artists: Alexandria Vocational Services is seeking a mural artist or group of artists to paint a portion of a 30’x 60’ concrete wall in a warehouse that houses the Sheltered Workshop Program. Program participants complete projects such as labeling, envelope stuffing and film recycling. Some funds are available for supplies.* Representative Payees: Payees receive Social Security checks and pay bills for persons with an intellectual disability or mental illness. A separate bank account is opened with automatic deposit and there are few monthly transactions. The duties require two hours per month, per account. For more information about these volunteer opportunities, contact Jennifer Cordero at jennifer.cohen-cordero@alexandriava.gov or 703-838-4455, x 161.

Nonprofit organizations and other grantseekers in Alexandria looking for funding sources now have access to a valuable new collection of resources through Alexandria Library. The Foundation Center’s core collection includes The Foundation Directory Online and Foundation Grants to Individuals Online. All four Alexandria Library branches have access to the two databases through their catalog computers. The complete Cooperating Collection of print and electronic resources is held at the Barrett Library, located at 717 Queen St. For more information visit visit www.alexandria.lib.va.us .

The 4Paws Rescue Team is allowed to keep foster cats at the Petco in Alexandria to increase their chances of finding a loving home. Petco volunteers are asked to commit to one evening or morning each week to care for 2-4 cats. Currently are in dire need of Friday, Saturday and Sunday morning volunteers (until noon), but volunteers for other shifts are encouraged to apply as well. 
If interested, contact info@fourpaws.org or by phone at 703-715-6369.

Alexandria Library now offers its patrons a chance to write their own reviews of almost all of the Library holdings (books, movies, music, and other materials) on the Alexandria Library Web site online catalog at www.alexandria.lib.va.us. To access the online catalog, visit www.alexandria.lib.va.us , click on “Library Catalog,” and begin browsing. To write a review, simply register and type your review for all to read. For more information, contact Mark Schwartz at 703-519-3498, or e-mail mschwartz@alexandria.lib.va.us

The Northern Virginia Long-Term Care Ombudsman Program is seeking persons who are diplomatic, assertive, and good communicators to serve as volunteer ombudsmen. Volunteers are assigned to a specific local nursing home or assisted-living facility in the City of Alexandria and make weekly visits, meeting one-on-one with residents. For further information and to obtain an application, call 703-324-5422, or visit www.fairfaxcounty.gov/LTCOmbudsman.

The Alexandria chapter of the National Association for the Advancement of Colored People (NAACP) meet at 7 p.m. on the first Wednesday of every month, at the Nannie J. Lee Recreation Center, 1108 Jefferson St. Contact 703-684-6190 or visit www.naacpalexandria.org.

Greenlight Toastmasters International meets every second and fourth Wednesday at 7 p.m. at Mount Vernon Rec Center, 2701 Commonwealth Ave. Visit greenlight.freetoasthost.info or 703-569-4810.

Every Saturday, 7–9 a.m. there are bookmark distributions in Del Ray and Old Town to promote awareness about domestic violence. For more information contact Stephanie Romonchuk at Stephanie.romonchuk@alexandriava.gov or 703-838-4911.