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Janelle Germanos

Stories by Janelle

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Honored by Supervisors

Norma Heck, who has been an owner of a home in North Springfield since 1956, was recognized last week by the Board of Supervisors for her service and dedication to the community.

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Principals Visit Island in Chesapeake Bay

Environmental lessons will be incorporated in classroom teaching.

From July 30 to Aug. 1, 24 principals from elementary and middle schools in Fairfax County embarked on a journey to Port Isobel, located near the island of Tangier Island in the middle of the Chesapeake Bay.

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Traffic Changes on I-95

Left-turn Lanes to Close at Franconia-Springfield Parkway Interchange

On Aug. 8, or shortly around this date, all left turns from Franconia-Springfield Parkway and left turns to and from I-95 north and south will close to allow for widening of the ramps connecting the I-95 HOV Lanes and Franconia-Springfield Parkway.

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Greenspring Recognized for Awarding 32 Scholarships

Students receive $10,000 each for college or trade school.

Greenspring Village recently awarded 32 student dining services employees scholarships of $10,000 each, and was recognized for this achievement at a recent Fairfax County Board of Supervisors meeting.

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Fairfax Considering Changes to Rules on Food Trucks

Planning Commission continues food truck discussion.

Fairfax County is considering a change to the zoning rules concerning the operation of food trucks within the county. Under new rules, vendors would pay under $200 for licensing and would require permission from property owners.

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Honored by Supervisors

Resolution honors Braddock Resident Norma Heck for years of community service.

Norma Heck, who has been an owner of a home in North Springfield since 1956, was recognized last week by the Board of Supervisors for her service and dedication to the community.

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School Board Funds Full Day Mondays

School system has over $38 million surplus.

The Fairfax County School Board voted at its last meeting to approve funding for full day Mondays for elementary-school students. The board voted back in June to approve ending half-day Mondays, but voted to fund the move, which will cost $7,639,300 at its July 24 meeting.

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Planning Commission Tables Residential Studio Amendment

Discussion on affordable housing likely to continue.

Although more than 15 public meetings and seven committee sessions have been held since Oct. 13, the Fairfax County Planning Commission voted unanimously last week to table the proposed Residential Studio Amendment, which would have provided apartments to residents working low-income jobs.

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Springfield Shortlisted for FBI Headquarters

Other locations are Greenbelt and Landover.

Springfield could very well be the next site of the FBI headquarters. The General Services Administration and FBI announced Tuesday that Springfield was included on the shortlist for the new FBI headquarters.

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Laurel Hill Master Plan Meets Final Approval

Construction expected to begin this fall.

The Fairfax County Board of Supervisors voted Tuesday to approve the plan to develop the site of the former Lorton prison.

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Supervisors Deny Landfill Application

Board votes against plan to extend life of Lorton Landfill.

The Board of Supervisors voted late Tuesday to reject an EnviroSolutions application to extend the life of the Lorton construction debris landfill until 2034. Supervisors voted in a 6-4 vote to deny the application, which in effect will require the landfill to close by the end of 2018.

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How Has the Library Affected You?

Friends of Richard Byrd Library encourage visitors to share library stories.

Springfield resident Eleanor Lamb loves the library. The West Springfield High School graduate visited consistently while growing up in the area, and is now giving back through her internship with the Friends of Richard Byrd Library. Lamb, a rising junior at William and Mary, has spent the summer gathering the opinions and viewpoints of people who used the library, taking their picture and making posters with the responses as part of the “Library Stories” project.

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Serving up a Summer Treat

Springfield residents make homemade ice cream at area farmers markets.

Even with flavors that contain vegetables like beets and rhubarbs, children and adults alike are crazy for Craig and June McMullen’s homemade, fresh and natural ice cream. “It’s a great way to get kids to eat vegetables,” June said.

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Express Lanes, Rapid-Bus Transit Planned for I-66

Improvements will be made from Capital Beltway to Haymarket.

Express lanes and rapid-bus transit could be coming to Interstate 66, Virginia Governor Terry McAuliffe announced on July 17.

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Give Blood, Give Back to Community

Paul VI student hosting blood drive in Clifton.

When Mitch Kiefer was 6, his 3-year-old brother Brent was diagnosed with leukemia. Brent recovered, but Kiefer remains committed to helping others suffering from similar illnesses. Now, Kiefer, a student at Paul VI Catholic School in Fairfax, is planning a second blood drive in Clifton in honor of his brother.

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Springfield Pet Store Shares Importance of Good Nutrition

Felix & Oscar provide natural pet food.

Nikki Logan and Matt O’Leary, employees of Felix & Oscar, a natural pet food store in Springfield, admit that their pets probably eat better than they do sometimes. “With all of the processed and artificial stuff that’s in fast food, I would definitely say yes,” Logan said.

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Caring for Aging Pets

Jason Overman of Springfield Animal Hospital shares some best practices.

Even for those pet lovers who pay close attention to the health and well-being of their pets, it’s not uncommon for owners to be unaware of when their pet is reaching the point of becoming a senior. Because the lifespan of pets can vary, it’s important to do extensive research, and to take pets to the vet at least once a year.

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Express Lanes, Rapid-Bus Transit Planned for 1-66

Improvements will be made from Capital Beltway to Haymarket.

Express lanes and rapid-bus transit could be coming to Interstate 66, Virginia Governor Terry McAuliffe announced on July 17.

Give Blood, Give Back to Community

Paul VI Student Hosting Blood Drive in Clifton

When Mitch Kiefer was six, his three-year-old brother Brent was diagnosed with leukemia. Brent recovered, but Kiefer remains committed to helping others suffering from similar illnesses. Now, Kiefer, a student at Paul VI Catholic School in Fairfax, is planning a second blood drive in Clifton in honor of his brother.

Cross County Trail Renamed to Honor Connolly

“Gerry Connolly Cross County Trail” unveiled at ceremony in Lorton.

On National Trails Day on June 7, the Cross County Trail, which goes through each district in Fairfax County, was renamed to the “Gerry Connolly Cross County Trail” in honor of U.S. Rep. Gerry Connolly’s work to build the trail.

Fairfax County Updates Green Building Policy

New policy is result of new technology for green rating systems.

The green building policy in Fairfax has been updated, requiring higher standards for residential, retail, office and other construction projects seeking approval for rezoning in the county.

Food Truck Changes Considered in Fairfax County

Public Hearings are July 30 and September 9

On June 17, the Board of Supervisors voted to move forward with a proposal to make changes to food truck regulations.

Archive Provides ‘Insight into the Reality of Segregation’

Northern Virginia Civil Rights Archive dedicated at George Mason.

Civil Rights activists Edwin Henderson, Lillie Jessie and Ralph Smith joined numerous other Virginia residents who lived through the Civil Rights movement and provided their stories during a dedication ceremony for the Northern Virginia Civil Rights Archive on July 7.

Give Blood, Give Back to Community

Paul VI Student Hosting Blood Drive in Clifton

Kiefer, a student at Paul VI Catholic School in Fairfax, is planning a second blood drive in Clifton in honor of his brother.

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Saying Goodbye at Halley Elementary

School says goodbye to a ‘true humanitarian.’

Since Halley Elementary School opened in the 1990s, Phoebe Boatright has been at the school inspiring students and helping the Lorton community. This June, Boatright retired after 46 years in education. Students, staff and parents at Halley say they will miss Boatright, who worked as a counselor at the school.

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Expect HOV Lane Closures This Summer

Construction of 95 Express Lanes continues.

Drivers planning on using Interstate 95 to get to their vacation destination, or even just to get to work, should prepare for overnight and weekend HOV lane closures from Washington, D.C. to Dumfries as construction of the 95 Express Lanes continues.

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Celebrating the ‘Best of Braddock’

Braddock District residents honored for service.

From 10-year-old Rohil Bhinge, who helped raise funds to complete a handicap accessible playground, to Norma Heck, who was one of the first five homeowners of North Springfield in 1955, the Braddock District is full of exceptional citizens.

Fairfax School Board Elects Chairman, Vice Chair

Tamara Derenak Kaufax and Ted Velkoff elected to lead Board.

Tamara Derenak Kaufax (Lee District) and Ted Velkoff (at-large) were elected chairman and vice chair of the Fairfax County School Board on Thursday night, July 10, following an abstention from some members in the election of chairman. Both will serve in their positions for one year.

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School Board Decreases Suspension Time

Student Rights and Responsibilities revised.

The school board voted unanimously at the end of June to change the discipline handbook, which will now focus on in school suspensions to preserve time in school.

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School Board Decreases Suspension Time

Student Rights and Responsibilities revised.

Starting this fall, suspensions for certain student offenses in Fairfax County will decrease, thanks to a revision of the school system’s Student Rights and Responsibilities [SR&R]. The school board voted unanimously at the end of June to change the discipline handbook, which will now focus on in school suspensions to preserve time in school. Offenses that come with mandatory punishments are decreased under the updated handbook.

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Fairfax Updates Green Building Policy

New policy is result of new technology for green rating systems.

The green building policy in Fairfax has been updated, requiring higher standards for residential, retail, office and other construction projects seeking approval for rezoning in the county.

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Archive Provides ‘Insight into the Reality of Segregation’

Northern Virginia Civil Rights Archive dedicated at George Mason.

Civil Rights activists Edwin Henderson, Lillie Jessie and Ralph Smith joined numerous other Virginia residents who lived through the Civil Rights movement and provided their stories during a dedication ceremony for the Northern Virginia Civil Rights Archive on July 7.

Wild Horses and Burros Visit Lorton

Adoption event is one of many across the country.

Typical dog owners may not think of comparing their furry companion to a wild horse or burro, but the comparison isn’t too far-fetched.

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‘The Highest Achieving Class’

West Springfield High Class of 2014 told to ‘follow dreams, learn from failure.’

This year’s graduating class from West Springfield High School is one of the most high-achieving classes in the school’s history. That’s what Mark Greenfelder, principal of West Springfield High School and graduate of the school’s class of 1987, said at the Class of 2014’s graduation ceremony on June 23 at the Patriot Center. “The Class of 2014 is the highest achieving class I’ve had the privilege to be associated with,” he said.

Gadson, Army Honored by Board of Supervisors

Gadson praised for strengthening relationship between Fairfax County and Fort Belvoir.

For his work in strengthening Fort Belvoir’s relationship with Fairfax County and for serving as a community leader, Colonel Gregory D. Gadson was honored with a proclamation from the Board of Supervisors as he departs Fort Belvoir on June 25.

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Friends of Richard Byrd Library Improve Community

The group was awarded at the 2014 Volunteer Fairfax Awards.

As president of the Friends of Richard Byrd Library, Springfield resident Christine Peterson spends countless hours, along with other volunteers in the group, working to ensure the library is effectively serving the community.

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Marker Dedicated at Wolf Run Shoals in Clifton

Site played important role during Civil War.

During the Civil War, Wolf Run Shoals in Clifton served as a major entry point for the Union Army marching north. A marker written by historians James Lewis and Brian McEnany, honoring the site’s rich historical legacy, was unveiled during a ceremony at the site in Clifton on June 21.

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Wild Horses and Burros Visit Lorton

Adoption event is one of many across the country.

Typical dog owners may not think of comparing their furry companion to a wild horse or burro, but the comparison isn’t too far-fetched.

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Clifton Film Fest Coming July 19

Kickstarter campaign open until July 4.

For anyone interested in checking out some local creative talent, consider the upcoming Clifton Film Fest, which will feature work from filmmakers around the area. The Clifton Film Fest is Saturday, July 19, and a Kickstarter campaign to raise funds for the event is underway until July 4. Funds raised from the campaign cover t-shirts and the VIP area for the filmmakers, as well as a red carpet area where they get interviewed.

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Cherry Run Celebrates 30 Years

School reflects on past, looks forward to renovations.

November 13, 1983 was dedication day for Cherry Run Elementary School, located just off Fairfax County Parkway in Burke. Over thirty years later, the school is celebrating its 30th anniversary, remembering years past and celebrating those to come.

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Youth Suicide Prevention Training Offered Online

Interactive training helps adults deal with serious issues.

Following several incidents in the community involving youth and suicide, Laura Yager, the director of partnership and resource development for the Fairfax-Falls Church Community Services Board, said the community has recognized the need for youth suicide prevention.

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Food Truck Changes Considered in Fairfax County

Public Hearings are July 30 and Sept. 9.

Instead of bringing a brown-bag lunch to work or venturing out for fast food, Fairfax County residents may soon have a different option. On June 17, the Board of Supervisors voted to move forward with a proposal to make changes to food truck regulations. The proposal will allow food trucks to operate at office buildings, construction sites, and commercial and industrial properties. Public hearings on the proposal will be held in front of the Planning Commission on July 30 and Sept. 9 in front of the Board of Supervisors.

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Former Hayfield Principal Dave Tremaine Dies

Dave Tremaine, a former principal at Hayfield Secondary School, died June 16. Tremaine recently retired from his position as principal at Hayfield, where he has worked since 2010.

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Celebrating New Athletic Fields

Audubon residents also looking to make changes in the community.

For years, residents living right off of Richmond Highway, including those who live at Audubon Mobile Home Park located next to Costco, faced a lack of safe, quality places for their children to play.

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Medicaid Expansion Supporters Rally in Lorton

Budget without Medicaid expansion being reviewed by Governor.

day before Virginia legislators reconvened in Richmond and passed a budget without Medicaid expansion, advocates gathered in Lorton to show their support for expanding health care coverage to 400,000 Virginians.

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Landfill Decision Deferred to July 29

Board Chairman Sharon Bulova looking for compromise.

The decision has already been delayed before, but the future of the Lorton landfill will remain uncertain as the Board of Supervisors voted Tuesday to defer the decision to July 29.

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First Responders Honored for Going ‘Above and Beyond’

Greater Springfield Chamber of Commerce hosts First Responders Benefit Lunch.

Being a first responder is stressful enough, but the first responders who were honored at this year’s Above and Beyond: First Responders Benefit Lunch excel at their jobs and more.

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Fairfax County Retired Educators Award Scholarships

Seven aspiring educators from Fairfax County receive awards.

Aspiring educators from across Fairfax County were honored for their accomplishments and presented with scholarships to help them begin their teaching careers at a luncheon and ceremony held by the Fairfax County Retired Educators on June 12 in Fairfax. Every year, FCRE awards students interested in teaching careers with $2,000 scholarships. This year, the seven students were either graduates or soon-to-be graduates of high schools throughout Fairfax County, including Robinson, Lake Braddock, West Springfield, Marshall, Mclean and James Madison.

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Despite Low Unemployment, Veterans Need Assistance

“Supporting our Region’s Veterans” report identifies suggestions for improvement.

Although veterans in Northern Virginia are more educated than those nationwide and are less likely to live below the poverty line and be unemployed, a new report has found that individual anecdotes from veterans in the area demonstrate that there are still areas that need improvement.

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School Calendar Changes Examined

Fairfax County considers ending half-day Mondays, at the cost between $4 to $7.6 Million.

Changes could be coming soon to school schedules in Fairfax County, under a new plan announced by Superintendent Karen Garza at a work session on May 28.

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