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Donna Manz

Stories by Donna

Vienna: Chillin’ on Church Draws Hundreds to Block Party

Second seasonal party on Church Street to become Vienna tradition.

The second seasonal Chillin’ on Church block party drew in hundreds more guests than the debut party in June. Church Street lit up with music, games, food, and neighbors meeting neighbors.

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Vienna Looking Forward to New Look

From community center to Marco Polo, change comes to Vienna.

Vienna doesn’t change much … and that’s the way the Vienna zip codes like it --- a small-town feel, family-focused. There’s not much in the way of crime unless an unlocked vehicle break-in counts. The annual Halloween parade, Oktoberfest, Church Street Stroll, and ViVa! Vienna! are traditions that don’t die.

Vienna Snapshot: Country Fair Draws Hundreds to Church Street

Sweltering heat did not deter families from activities and games on grounds of Freeman House.

If smiles, wonderment, laughter, photo ops, and crowds are an indication of success, by that standard the debut Historic Vienna, Inc. Freeman House “country fair” on Aug. 20 was a booming celebration of country life.

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When Vienna Was Still a Small Town

John Becci recalls growing up in town before it boomed.

John Becci’s step-mother, Milly, still lives in the house on Branch Road that the Becci children, now adults, grew up in decades ago. John Becci’s dad, Aldo, who bought that home from Yeonas builders in 1956, died in 2014. His mom died of cancer in 1978, the year John graduated from James Madison High School.

Old-time Country Fair Comes to Vienna

Historic Vienna, Inc. hosts free activities reminiscent of an earlier time.

Step into a Norman Rockwell painting on Aug. 20 as Historic Vienna, Inc. hosts a country fair with a myriad of activities, at no charge, for families. The debut “Vienna’s Country Fair” takes over the Freeman House end of the Vienna Town Green from noon to 4 p.m. on Saturday, Aug. 20. HVI refers to the fair as a “return to a simpler time.”

Vienna History Revisited at Freeman Store

Connie Stuntz chatted about ‘This Was Vienna, Virginia’ to friends and fans.

Connie Stuntz was born in Falls Church in 1923 and moved to Vienna after she and Mayo Stuntz were married in 1947.

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Vienna: Putting Their Money Where Their Heart Is

Vienna siblings raise funds for children rescued from child labor and human trafficking.

Vienna siblings Medhnaa Saran, 12, and her younger brother Kushaan, 11, are on a mission to help children halfway across the world, victims of child labor and trafficking, to be safe and to get an education.

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Vienna: Big Splash on Town Green Made a Big Splash

Hundreds of kids and parents turned out for water fun.

The Town of Vienna Parks and Recreation Department picked the ideal sultry summer day – July 31 - for its first-ever Big Splash on the Town Green.

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Jesus Christ Superstar Live in Vienna

Vienna Youth Players bring Andrew Lloyd Webber’s smash musical to life.

The Vienna Youth Players have interpreted Andrew Lloyd Webber’s smash Broadway musical, “Jesus Christ Superstar,” with an era twist. Turning its back on the traditional biblical setting of the play, the VYP has set its upcoming production as a 1920s period-piece in a nod to the timelessness of the story’s essence of friendship, steadfastness, and betrayal.

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Summer Activities in Vienna and Reston Abound.

When the children – or their parents – tire of the local swim clubs, parents look for alternative community attractions and events.

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A Tea in Vienna with a Taste of History

Clothed in the dress of her day – mid-1800s, Ms. Elizabeth Cady Stanton greeted her guests demurely at a “tea” on Sunday, July 3, in the parlor of Freeman Store and Museum.

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Vienna Hawks Finish a Perfect Season

Fifth and sixth graders smothered competition throughout lacrosse season.

Fox 5 Zip Trip Comes to Vienna

Morning program broadcast live from Town Green and Church Street.

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Vienna: Pet Adoption Expo Finds Forever-Homes for Homeless Animals

Organized and sponsored by the Vienna Arts Society, adoption event pulled together adoptables and families looking for a furry family member.

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Vienna: Chillin’ on Church Block Party Draws Crowds

Debut block party on Church Street and Town Green sponsored by Town of Vienna Parks and Rec offers live music, food, fun.

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Vienna Bike Rodeo Kicks Off ‘Bike/Walk to School Week’

Annual kids’ obstacle course embraces safe biking.

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2016 Vienna Idol Voted by Community on Town Green

Brian Bui pulled the most cash-votes to take the title.

It took 45 auditions, months of preparation and community outreach, and dozens of sponsors and volunteers to come down to this moment: Vienna Idol 2016 finals.

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Vienna: Some Are Hidden Gems, Others Star in Local Businesses

Throughout Vienna, small shops are loaded with a big fan-base.

From one end of Vienna to the other, there are small businesses loaded with a loyal customer-base who may not be famous – yet – in the community.

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ViVa! Vienna! Returns Memorial Day Weekend

Rides, food, entertainment, kids’ activities and Memorial Day tribute celebrate community spirit.

What has 300-plus craft and merchandise vendors, dozens of carnival-food kiosks, non-stop entertainment on multiple stages, more than 20 amusement rides for kids, and takes over the historic Church Street corridor for three days? The annual Memorial Day weekend festival, hosted by the Rotary Club of Vienna, ViVa! Vienna! does.

Vienna Arts Society Hosts Debut ‘Planet Art for Kids’ Workshop

Participants will create mobiles from repurposed natural and manmade materials

The Vienna Arts Society (VAS) has scheduled its first, “Planet Art for Kids” event in celebration of Earth Day, Saturday, April 30 at the VAS center on Pleasant Street, Vienna.

Vienna: Westbriar Elementary Celebrates 50th Anniversary

From 350 students in 1965 to 750 students today, Westbriar boasts outstanding academic programs and recognition.

In the early years of Westbriar Elementary School’s 50-year-run, there were but 350 students from the neighborhoods along Old Courthouse Road on down to Browns Mill.

Vienna Hosts Two Book Sales

Historic Vienna, Inc. and Friends of Patrick Henry Library offered more than 30,000 used books over April’s first weekend.

It was a big weekend over April 2 and 3 for Vienna-area book fairs. Both Historic Vienna, Inc. and Friends of Patrick Henry Library opened their doors to hundreds of residents and book dealers and offered thousands of inexpensive used books.

Vintage Radio Plays Come to Life in Vienna

Vienna Theatre Company reproduces two mysteries with humor and hard-boiled crime-solving.

The 18-month closure of the Vienna Community Center – renovation time – precipitated some scurrying around by groups that regularly used the center for programming and special events.

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Spring Fun Has Sprung in Vienna

From food festivals to ViVa! Vienna! and things in between, warm weather events blossom in the Vienna area.

Some days, more than others, it appears that spring has finally sprung. Fortunately, events are planned and announced long before the last snowflake has fallen, giving the community things to look forward to …

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Vienna: Fun Things To Do in the Area on Spring Break

You don’t have to fly to have fun.

Not everyone wants to get on an aircraft during one of the busiest travel weeks of the year. Fortunately, if you live in the Vienna area, there are lots of fun things to do that other Americans pay to do (hint: no hotels, no flights).

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Vienna: Umbria Olive Oil on Area Tables

From the rolling countryside of Umbria to the neighborhoods of Vienna, local oral surgeon brings the best of the best to local tables.

What do you call Washingtonian Magazine’s “Top Oral and Maxillofacial Surgeon” living out his alter-ego dream in a parallel universe --- overseeing production of 100 percent pure Italian olive oil and importing the finished product to the U.S?

Vienna: On the Way to Forever Homes

The Korffs of Vienna foster dogs who wait for a family to love them.

For many families, watching the family pup frolic and play around is fun.

Vienna: From Green Bean to ‘Green’

Caffe Amouri wins Virginia Green Restaurant of the Year award.

From cold cups made of corn starch rather than plastic, fettucine coffee stirrers (big hit with little kids), windows that open in warm weather, and coffee grounds set out in a bin for free use by local gardeners, all underscore Amouri’s commitment to sustainability.

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Optimists Present $29,000 Donation to Growing Hope

At Feb. 3 dinner meeting, check presentation and installation of new members.

Northern Virginia, in support of local families confronting childhood cancer.

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Vienna Volunteer Fire Department Honors Volunteers

Fire department, Auxiliary recognizes selfless service in 2015.

Approximately 130 friends of the Vienna Volunteer Fire Department came out on Feb. 6 to salute the department’s volunteers and staff for service to the community in 2015.

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Vienna: Cool Things to Do in Winter

When children are off from school in cold weather, there’s still fun to be found.

The children are off from school --- again. It’s winter and it’s cold, and, possibly, snowy. You’ve done the library (Patrick Henry and the Oakton Library), the movies (huge selection at Tysons AMC) and have taken the kids bowling (Bowl America is full of youngsters during “break”).

What to Do This Winter in Vienna

Fun to Fun Fundraisers coming up.

The thought of snow sends Northern Virginians into survival mode, discouraging the scheduling of mega-events.

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Vienna Athlete ‘Slides’ Towards 2018 Winter Olympics

Veronica Day competes in skeleton, nationally and internationally.

While watching the 2010 winter Olympics bobsled and skeleton runs staged in Canada, James Madison High School graduate Veronica Day joked to her college roommate they they, too, should learn to bobsled.

Vienna: What’s on Radar for 2016

Local officials look out over the horizon in the new year in Vienna.

What does 2016 look like to elected officials and the business community serving the greater-Vienna area?

Vienna: New Year’s Hopes, Resolutions

What are your hopes and resolutions for 2016?

Independence Days

For many area seniors, aging-in-place is a strike for self-reliance.

Irene Coyne, 77, fills her days with activities, from crafting jewelry and knitting to volunteer work at a multitude of nonprofit organizations, such as Shepherd’s Center of Oakton-Vienna and Our Lady of Good Counsel Church.

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2015 in Vienna, The Year That Was

Community center renovation was community’s biggest newsworthy story.

Not much in the way of earth-shattering events happens in Vienna and not much changes there every year …

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December Events in Vienna Add Sparkle to the Holidays

From music to ice skating, area makes most of the colder months.

Most holiday fairs have passed by early December but special events and activities remain.

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Where to Find Last-minute Gift Ideas in the Vienna Area

From memorial contributions to over-the-top “wow,” The Connection looks at unique gifts for the holidays

What makes a gift one-of-a-kind? When it is customized to the recipient’s interests and joys. Here are a few last-minute gift ideas, from the noble to the sublime …

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Church Street Holiday Stroll Still Sparkles in the Rain

Hundreds of families enjoy the outdoor and indoor festivities.

A cold drizzle may have dampened the attendance numbers at the annual Church Street Holiday Stroll but it did not dampen the spirits of the guests and strollers who braved the weather conditions on Nov. 30.

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Vienna: Festive Fun Guide for the Holiday Season

From caring and sharing to Santa and shopping, Vienna-Oakton celebrates.

From food drives and coat drives to festive holiday events and activities, there is something for every age group living in the Vienna-Oakton area. Keep this calendar close by …

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Vienna Music Teacher Brightens Day of Underserved Children

Taffy brings performing arts to children in need locally

There are scores of kids you do not read about in the newspapers; they’re not award-winning students or scholarship-bound athletes.

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Television and Big-Screen Comic Comes to Vienna

Comedian and inspirational speaker Mack Dryden headlines benefit for Shepherd’s Center of Oakton-Vienna.

When the Shepherd’s Center of Oakton-Vienna (SCPV) hosts a fundraiser, it does so big-time, pulling in professional artists esteemed in their fields.

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Vienna: Family Fall Fun

From Oktoberfest to the much-anticipated annual halloween parade, Vienna offers a diversity of entertainment.

When the air turns crisp, colorful leaves fall, pumpkins and a halloween parade take over, it’s fall in Vienna.

Family Fun Day at Vienna Town Green

Optimists of Greater Vienna host fundraiser on behalf of Growing Hope.

On the morning of Sept. 19, the Vienna Town Green was filled with live music, laughter and children running around “dunking” local familiar-faces in a dunk tank, jumping in a bounce house, getting faces painted or fingers finger-printed, getting a balloon animal, or nibbling on free refreshments while listening to Donaldson’s Run perform classic rock and pop … all courtesy of the Optimists of Greater Vienna and its fundraising campaign on behalf of Growing Hope and childhood cancer research.

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Vienna Commemorates 9/11

American Legion Post 180 of Vienna hosts annual “A Day to Remember” program.

On a morning much like that of Sept. 11, 2001, the Vienna community commemorated the 14th anniversary of the terrorist attacks in the United States.

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Vienna: Family Fun Day for ‘Growing Hope’

Optimists’ annual event comes to the Town Green on Sept. 19.

The Optimist Club of Greater Vienna hosts its 10th annual Family Fun Day on behalf of “Growing Hope,” in support of children diagnosed with cancer and their families, on Saturday, Sept. 19 on the Vienna Town Green.

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McLean: Middle Eastern Food Festival Draws Hundreds

Annual Labor Day weekend event features Arabic food and sweets.

It was only a matter of minutes before the parking lot of Holy Transfiguration Melkite Greek-Catholic Church on Lewinsville Road filled to overflow on Sept. 5.

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McLean: Middle Eastern Food Festival Returns for Labor Day Weekend

Holy Transfiguration Melkite Greek Catholic Church in McLean hosts food and fun for families.

Labor Day weekend marks the “unofficial” end of summer and launches the football season.

'Fiddler on the Roof' Comes to Vienna

Vienna Youth Players brings beloved musical to life.

The musical is an extravaganza of haunting song and spirited dance, focusing on preservation and loss of “traditions” and changing times, and is a departure from the more contemporary pieces the Vienna Youth Players has done.

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