Manassas Local

Prince William County could move cemetery to make way for new fire station


This is the site of the abandoned cemetery.
'Option A' plan for the fire station.
Another alternative option for the station.

The Coles district is getting a new fire station.

But the location and plan for the new Coles District Fire Station is currently the subject of some controversy, as one of the proposed sites would require the county to dig up and move an old cemetery on the property.

The original station at 13712 Dumfries Road in Manassas, was built in 1976, according to county documents.

“The current station we have has exceeded its life cycle…a few years ago we hired a consultant – it was an architectural firm – who took a look at each of our stations…the recommendation for the Coles station was that it be replaced. Putting any more investment into that station, really isn’t going to give [us] the proper return. The construction style of that building was only meant to be a 30-year building, and we’ve far exceeded that,” said Prince William Fire and Rescue Chief Kevin McGee.

The new fire station would take 18-months to complete once it has been approved, said McGee.

According to McGee, the cemetery – which is abandoned – was from the 1800’s, and the county did not originally own the parcel the cemetery is sitting on, but purchased it as part of the plans to replace the fire station.

“We looked at some of the options for how to place the station on the property, and there was [the] cemetery. It was abandoned. We’ve known that it was there, but it is kind of ‘hidden away’…there are not visitors to it, it’s an abandoned graveyard,” said McGee.

Potomac Local visited the cemetery and found that there were no headstones remaining, but there were some field stones, and that the ground had sunken in, in the areas where human remains are buried.

“When looking at the site, it was very difficult to locate a station without moving the cemetery,” said McGee.

Four options for the fire station

County documents show that there are four options for the new fire station – with ‘Option A’ being the preferred route, according to McGee.

‘Option A’ would build a new fire station next to the current station, and relocate the cemetery to another site on the property, according to county documents. This would fit into the $10.7 million budgeted for the project, by Prince William County.

‘Option B’ would entail rebuilding on the same location, using a temporary facility in the interim, which would cost an additional $1.2 million, stated county documents.

‘Option C’ would be to build a two-story station, which would impact response times – according to McGee – and cost an extra $888,275, stated county documents.

And ‘Option D’ would reduce the sound buffer area for nearby residents, by building around the cemetery, it would create a segregated access point for apparatus, and cost an additional $1 million, according to county documents.

Descendants, historical groups upset by plans to move cemetery

While McGee stated that the county wants to involve descendants of those buried in the cemetery in the process, and wants the relocation of the graves to be done in a respectful way, the Prince William County Historical Commission and descendants have expressed their concerns.

“The Historical Commission objects to [the preferred plan] as we feel there must be some alternatives to disturbance of the cemetery…one being a two story firehouse, which would be similar to the last five firehouses built in Prince William County, and the proposed firehouse for Bacon Race [Fire Station]. They’re arguing that two story firehouses actually have a problem with increased response time, which we could not understand, as to why it seems to be the preferred plan in the past and the present,” said Bill Olsen, a member of the Prince William County Historical Commission.

Olsen stated that cemeteries shouldn’t be considered ‘moveable’ sites.

“The discussion should be, ‘Is there justification for moving a cemetery’ which is not normally considered a moveable object,” said Olsen.

Susan Tansill, a county resident whose husband is directly descended from one of the families buried at the cemetery, stated that moving the cemetery is a bad idea. Tansill had spoken with the county after hearing about the possible disinterment.

“When I responded back to the [county] that we were really more interested in hoping that they would keep the cemetery intact, I didn’t hear anything back from the county…our family feels that it’s better to preserve the dignity of the deceased, and work around, what is obviously inconvenient, but a fact on the site, instead of digging them up,” Tansill said.

A public hearing about the fire station and the cemetery will be held on September 8 at 2 p.m. at the McCoart Building in Woodbridge. Following the public hearing, the board of supervisors will ultimately select which of the four options the county will pursue, to build the new Coles District Fire Station.

Fall for Manassas! So many great events happening this season

Manassas Fall Jubilee
Manassas Fall Jubilee
Manassas Dog-a-pool-ooza

Children are already back in school and now the sun sets earlier and earlier. Why does summer always go by so quickly?

Don’t lament digging out your coats and putting away your flip flops. With autumn comes plenty of festivals and events to get you in the mood for fall.

First Friday

To kick off September, there is a First Friday on Sept. 4. Enjoy the last of the warm weather by strolling the streets of downtown where you can enjoy live music, shopping, and dining from 5:30 to 9 p.m. Downtown.

Bridal Showcase

Here’s a gift to all the brides-to-be is a one-stop shop for bridal research. Discover what Manassas businesses offer that will make the wedding of your dreams at the Historic Downtown Manassas Bridal Showcase on Sept. 6 from 11 a.m. to 3 p.m. Harris Pavilion. Buy tickets.

Bands, Brews & Barbecue

How does a roasted porter with a vanilla finish or a seasonal ale with layers like a pumpkin pie sound? Sample the best beer that the region has to offer at Bands, Brews & Barbecue on Sept. 12 from noon until 6 p.m. Hourly BBQ pairings are featured in the VIP tent. Manassas Museum Lawn. Buy tickets.


Cool off the dogs of summer at the Dog-a-pool-ooza at Stonewall Pool. The afternoon of Sept. 13 is the only day pups are allowed in the pool before it closes ($5/dog). Stonewall Park.

Greek Festival 

Interested in a Big, Fat, Greek Weekend? Visit the Annual Greek Festival on Sept. 18 from 11 a.m. to 9 p.m. and the Taste of Greece and East the following day from 11 a.m. to 5 p.m. Opa! Harris Pavilion. Free.

Antique car meet

What’s more American than an apple pie? An antique car show! Come check out 150 four-wheeled beauties at the Annual Edgar Rohr Memorial Antique Car Meet on Sept. 19 from 10 a.m. to 3 p.m. This year’s feature car is a 1941 convertible Buick Phaeton and you can watch a team assemble a Model T Ford. There is still time to register to show your car for a small fee. Manassas Museum Lawn. Free.

Rev it up

Enjoy more classic cars as well as food trucks, cold beer, and live classic rock music at Bull Run Rotary’s Rev It Up for Rotary charity event benefitting CASA, Habitat for Humanity, and BARN from 5 to 9 p.m. Harris Pavilion. Free.

Chili cookoff 

Nothing says “fall” more than chili! Don’t miss the annual Chili Cookoff on Sept. 26 from 10 a.m. to 3 p.m. Think you have the best batch? It isn’t too late to join. Enter as a professional cook, amateur cook, or nonprofit organization. Sampling starts after 1 p.m. Harris Pavilion. Free.

Latino festival 

Salsa your way to the Annual Latino Festival on Sept. 27 from noon to 5:30 p.m. You will find tons of games for children, tasty foods, piñatas, and live music and dancing all day! Harris Pavilion. Free.

Fall Jubilee 

Pick a perfect pumpkin at the Annual Fall Jubilee. Enjoy the crisp air as you browse cool crafts, play games, and enjoy live music on Oct. 3 from 10 a.m. – 5 p.m. Downtown. Free.

Open house 

On Oct. 10 from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m., swing by the City of Manassas Utilities Open House at 8500 Public Works Drive to enjoy free food, a huge pumpkin patch where you can pick out a free pumpkin, children’s activities, and a chance to check out the cool utility trucks. Free.

Farmers market 

Don’t forget the farmer’s market is still open on Thursdays in the Harris Pavilion and Saturdays in Parking Lot B from 7:30 a.m. to 1 p.m. Pick up your favorite fall veggies before grabbing lunch at a nearby spot.

Digital solutions company JTC expands to Fredericksburg, Richmond

  • JTC, Inc.
  • Address: 9720 Capital Ct. #305, Manassas, Va.
  • Phone: (703) 794-1225
  • Website:
John Jewell is the president of JTC, Inc.

Jewell Technical Consulting will expand its market territory to include Fredericksburg and Richmond.

A Manassas, Virginia-based company, JTC, is the official IT provider of the Prince William Chamber of Commerce, and has long concentrated on the Northern Virginia market. The expansion marks the first time JTC has expanded into a new regional market.



Charles Sowers will lead the expansion and concentrate on growing the business in the Richmond, Fredericksburg, and Stafford areas in Central Virginia. Sowers will manage technical sales for JTC in these markets.

“I met Charles in 1995 when we were working on a project for Capital One Bank,” said JTC, Inc. President John Jewell. “We moved the bank from a Macintosh network and put it on a Windows network.”

JTC will market solutions to new customers in the medical and legal fields. The company will offer a wide range of solutions to include managed services of electronic medical records systems, disaster recovery, private cloud services, and IP telephone services.

“JTC Cloud is a private server. Unlike being on a Google, Amazon, or Rackspace server, we own the equipment, and our customers data is stored in a data center right here in Manassas,” said Jewell.

A large number of hospitals along the Interstate 95 corridor, and ancillary medical facilities that surround them made the area attractive to JTC. The expansion has been in the works for about a year, added Jewell.

JTC is a Microsoft Certified Partner and a Dell Certified Partner.

Expect parking changes for Downtown Manassas in coming weeks

Photo: City of Manassas

Parking changes are coming to Downtown Manassas.

According to Manassas spokeswoman Patty Prince, following a survey given to residents and tourists in the area, the city will undergo some changes to parking.

More on the changes from a Manassas release:

This fall changes are coming to parking in and around the Historic Downtown area of the City of Manassas.  Improvements are already underway at City Hall and the Parking Garage.  Changes of note include:

Daytime public parking in the garage has been moved from Levels 4 & 5 to Level 2 for customer convenience. Level 2 will have both four-hour free parking and all day paid parking.  The entire garage remains free and open to the public on evenings and weekends and after 10 a.m. on weekdays.

Permanent closure of the Journal Messenger Lot (Lot I) for public use.

Additional public and downtown employee/resident parking at City Hall.

Lengthened hours for public parking at the Manassas Museum and City Hall.

Additional four-hour public parking in the Water Tower Lot (Lot B).

When all of the changes are put in place, parking will be more streamlined.  Parking lots on the north side of the railroad tracks and all on-street parking will have a two-hour time limitation. On the south side of the railroad tracks, near Prince William Street, public parking lots will have a four-hour time limitation. All permit and time restrictions will cease at 5 p.m.,MondayFriday, excepting Red Permit commuter restrictions that will end at 10 a.m. There will be no permit or time restrictions in effect on evenings and weekends.

As always, certain parking lots and on-street parking may be closed for special events or street cleaning. Always read the posted signs before leaving your vehicle.

All of these changes come as a result of citizen recommendations gained from an online survey of residents and visitors, and the parking task force made up of residents, businesses and city staff.  Task force information can be found  For more information on permits, visit

Prince stated that the changes to the City Hall lot and it’s additional parking are already available, but there are not set dates for the other parking changes to take effect.

Man attacked during Manassas armed robbery


Prince William police are looking for two suspects, following an armed robbery in Manassas.

According to Prince William police, officers were called to investigate the robbery at Halterpath Trail in Manassas on the morning of September 1.

The victim – a 33-year old Manassas man – told officers he was walking when he was hit in the back from behind by an unknown object, which knocked him to the ground, according to Prince William police.

When the victim was on the ground, two unknown individuals kicked the victim and took his wallet before fleeing in a black vehicle, stated Prince William police.

The victim had minor injuries, and was taken to a local hospital for treatment, stated Prince William police.

Prince William police are looking for the two suspects, described as male, between 18 and 20 years old, wearing black face masks. They were last seen wearing black clothing and construction type gloves, according to Prince William police.

Expansion readies BadWolf Brewery for local distribution


Jeremy and Sarah Myers (left) own BadWolf Brewery.
BadWolf opened a new tap room inside a Manassas warehouse.
BadWolf opened a new tap room inside a Manassas warehouse.
BadWolf Brewery's first TV set arrives.

The goal for BadWolf Brewery: get its beer into every restaurant in Downtown Manassas.

The two-year-old brewery expanded to a new 6,200 square foot production facility and tap room in a warehouse complex on at 8420 Kao Circle in Manassas earlier this year. It’s “the next step up” in their game after opening the company’s original brewery on Center Street in Manassas.

Owners Sarah Meyers, 31, and Jeremy Myers, 35, and their nine employees will use the space to produce larger quantities of beer for with the goal of distributing it to local restaurants. The new facility also hosts events, and is a place where customers can walk in and buy a growler or keg for their parties at home.

Customers can also bring their own food to the new tap room — whether it be takeout or brought from home in a crockpot — and eat and sip on BadWolf beer.

“Manassas was ready for an eventual shift,” said Jeremy. “There was already so many great restaurants downtown, and the area was ready for a craft brewery, and we just happened to come in at the right time,”
The couple credits educated consumers who helped to build their strong local following.

“We live in cultured times when more people are asking questions about where their food comes from, where it’s made, what’s in it, and not just believing something that is crammed into their brain from a TV ad,” said Sarah.

BadWolf originally opened on Center Street in Manassas and quickly grew to be a local favorite. They Meyers’ wanted to open a large facility like the new one but couldn’t afford it.

BadWold eyed an old restaurant space for their expansion in the Tacketts Mill shopping center in Lake Ridge. But it would have cost too much to bring the Lake Ridge building up to current building codes, said Jeremy. Also, Prince William County did not allow small craft breweries in shopping centers at the time, but that has changed.

The company worked with a bank to secure a loan and then worked with Manassas City officials to find the new production house where they eventually located. The company plans to offer different experiences in their old and new tap rooms.

“We’ll do a batch of wild brews at the original brewery for those who want to mix it up, and then we’ll have the ‘safe zone’ here at the production facility for those who want the taste of something more familiar,” said Jeremy.

The brewery will next work to strike a deal with a beer distributor so its brews can be poured from taps in local restaurants. BadWolf’s two most-popular beers — “AK 47,” an Ameri-Kolsch style, hoppy-flavored ale, and its popular “Jesse’s Girl” amber ale is what they will pitch to Fredericksburg distributing company J.F. Fick.

The brewery also wants to bring in local restaurant owners to educate them on the beer making process. The new center also has yeast lab that will allow the company to harvest its own yeast. That key ingredient costs $300 per batch of beer brewed, and each brew nets 10 barrels of beer.

The couple will also add a new fixture to the new tap room: a 50-inch flat screen TV. UPS dropped it off on Tuesday and Jeremy helped unbox it.

“We always said we wouldn’t have a TV because we wanted people to come in and talk amongst themselves and interact. But people love to watch their games,” said Sarah.

The couple recently visited Old Ox Brewery in Fairfax County and noticed how many people came into watch baseball. That convinced them to order the new TV.

Friday and Saturday nights are the busiest times for BadWolf Brewery. The brewery will see about 100 customers at the new tap house on these nights, and about half that number at their brewery on Center Street.

Since BadWolf opened its doors two years ago, Manassas has welcomed Heritage Brewery, and KO Distilling that will focus its efforts on producing spirits. In nearby Woodbridge, Onery and Growling Bear breweries have opened.

Drink up at Fall BrewFest in Centreville Oct. 17, 18

2015_Brewfest_Beers_4_logos (10)

Grab some beer, cider and mead in Centerville this October.

Mad Fox Brewing Company is sponsoring the 9th annual Northern Virginia Fall BrewFest, which will be at the Bull Run Regional Park on October 17 and October 18, from 11 a.m. to 7 p.m.

According to a release, there will be more than 50 craft beers, ciders and meads available at the event.

More on tickets and details of the event, from a release:

The NoVa Fall BrewFest is ready to host serious brewers and beer fans alike. The focus for the NoVa Fall BrewFest will be fall and winter seasonal brews from local and regional breweries with some added meaderies and cideries in the mix. There will be more than 50 craft beers, ciders and meads to sample at the festival, with a nice representation from the local DC Metro area that has seen an explosion in the opening and establishment of craft breweries.

A ticket to the BrewFest costs $25 in advance online or $35 at the door. A ticket gives you admission to the festival, a special commemorative beer tasting glass and six tickets to taste your choice of craft brews. Designated driver tickets are also available for $10; children under 16 are free with an accompanying adult. Additional beer sampling tickets can be purchased for $2 per ticket.
For more information on the 2015 Northern Virginia Fall BrewFest, visit Also, follow us on Twitter @novabrewfest and like us on Facebook.

Minimally invasive heart surgery benefits Mary Washington Healthcare patients

Dr Alex Na, cardiovascular surgeon at Mary Washington Healthcare, talks about how patients benefit with minimally invasive heart surgery.

“They have less pain, and they have less wound-healing problems, they have less bleeding complications, and they less pulmonary complications,” said Na.

Mary Washington’s comprehensive heart center offers surgical excellence and advanced treatment options close to home and family.

“If you look at those complex cases, our outcomes are as good or better than most of the big institutions,” said Na.

While caring for each patient with dignity and compassion, our heart center continues to advance.

“The hospital is committed to bringing in the new technologies and keeping our cardiac surgery program as state of the art as possible. We’re doing all these things because it’s better care for the patients.”

Mary Washington Healthcare. Here for you. Always.

Manassas man charged after fleeing moving vehicle


A Manassas man has been charged for fleeing for his vehicle while it was still in drive, and had a child inside.

According to Prince William police, an officer saw a suspicious vehicle near Lomond Drive and Lomond South Drive in Manassas on the evening of August 30.

After the officer pulled the car over, driver of the vehicle – 27-year old Manassas man Nicholas Mavrommatis – opened his door and fled the area on foot when the vehicle was still in drive, stated Prince William police.

The vehicle began to move on to a sidewalk before a 26-year old Manassas woman in the passenger’s seat was able to place it in park, stated Prince William police.

When the officer investigated further, he found that the car was also occupied by a one year old girl, stated Prince William police.

Mavrommatis was arrested and is charged with felony child neglect, driving under the influence, unreasonable refusal, reckless driving and obstruction of justice, according to Prince William police.

Manassas man federally charged for child pornography


A Manassas man, and former school volunteer, has been federally charged with possession of child pornography.

According to a U.S. Justice Department release, 23-year old Manassas man David Battle II, was a volunteer for music programs at Osbourn High School and Metz Middle School in Manassas, prior to the child pornography charges.

Battle was arrested and charged back in June, by Manassas City police.

The detective that originally looked into the case is a member of the Manassas City Police Department, assigned to the Northern Virginia-Washington, DC Internet Crimes Against Children (ICAC) Task Force, according to Manassas City police spokeswoman Adrienne Helms.

After further investigation into his online activities, federal authorities became involved, and Battle was charged federally on August 6, stated a release.

More from a U.S. Justice Department release:

According to court documents and court proceedings, David Alexander Battle, II, 23, who worked for a private music company in Manassas, was arrested by the Manassas City Police Department on June 16, 2015, after law enforcement executed a search warrant at his residence and discovered evidence of child pornography, including two gigabytes of videos that appeared to be child pornography involving infants. Other evidence found at Battle’s residence included child pornography primarily of young boys and girls.

Battle is currently detained and awaiting trial.

Battle faces a mandatory minimum of 15 years in prison and a maximum penalty of 30 years, if convicted. The maximum statutory sentence is prescribed by Congress and is provided here for informational purposes, as the sentencing of the defendant will be determined by the court based on the advisory Sentencing Guidelines and other statutory factors.

Anyone with information about this case is encouraged to contact the Northern Virginia-Washington, DC Internet Crimes Against Children (ICAC) Task Force, or the Manassas City Police Department Investigative Services Division at 703-257-8092.

Paving in Manassas Park means missed OmniLink bus stops


Manassas Drive paving.
Manassas Drive paving.
Manassas Drive paving.

Several OmniLink bus stops in Manassas Park will be missed as road crews pave Manassas Drive.

Here’s the message from operators of OmniLink, the Potomac and Rappahannock Transportation Commission:

Due to safety concerns during the paving of Manassas Drive, the Manassas Park A OmniLink route detour, originally scheduled to begin on Wednesday, September 3, is being implemented immediately.

Detours for the Manassas Park A and B OmniLink routes will continue until buses can resume safe operations. Buses are unable to serve many stops. Passengers should anticipate delays.

A full list of stops that will be missed is on PRTC’s website.

Road crews in Manassas Park began work yesterday on repaving Manassas Drive, between Baker Street and Polk Drive. The work is expected to be completed this week, according to Manassas Park spokesman Calvin O’Dell.

The paving project is expected to cost the city $390,000. Manassas Drive is 15-miles long and links Lomond Drive in Prince William County to Generals Ridge Golf Course in Manassas Park.

Sheetz expanding in Bristow, Manassas, Stafford

sheetz ashton avenue

The popular gas station and convenience store Sheetz is expanding in the region.

A new store at the corner Sudley Manor Drive and Ashton Avenue outside Manassas is nearly two weeks on September 18. Company spokesman Allen Stevens said the new store will have:

— Expanded inside and outside seating
— A larger selection of freshly brewed coffee and iced tea
— Ice cream
— An aisle of beverage options including many frozen beverages
— A drive through window

The Pennsylvania-based company will also begin construction on a new store at the intersection of Balls Ford and Wellington roads in Bristow. Construction will begin this month, and the store should open in March.

A Sheetz at 8504 Centreville Road in Manassas Park will also get a makeover in the coming months. Prince William County officials are reviewing plans for a new Sheetz at the intersection of Route 28 and Bristow Road, added Allen.
A new Sheetz is under construction at the intersection of Garrisonville and Furnace roads in North Stafford.

Sheetz was founded in the 1950s, and today offers low-priced gasoline and cigarettes to its customers. The chain is also known for its made-to-order food that includes submarine sandwiches, burgers, hot dogs, pizza, wraps, and chicken wings.

Other Sheetz locations in the region include Dale City on Prince William Parkway and Hillendale Drive, and on Route 15 and Washington Street near I-66 in Haymarket. There are also two Sheetz locations in Fredericksburg and one in the Ferry Farm section of Stafford County.

Grab a bite at Duck Donuts in Bristow Center


A Duck Donuts location opened in Bristow this week.
They make all of their donuts fresh to order.
People lined up outside for their store opening on Monday.
They have 10 coatings and five toppings to choose from.

There’s a new donut shop in Bristow.

Larry Scherer and his business partner just opened the doors this Monday, of their first Duck Donuts franchise location at Bristow Center – on the corner of Route 28 and Linton Hall Road.

“I’ve lived in Prince William County basically my whole life, and had been looking for a business to open locally, and be a [bigger] part of the community,” said Scherer.

Duck Donuts started with their first store in Outer Banks, North Carolina, according to their website.

When looking at what business to pursue, Scherer said he chose Duck Donuts for several reasons.

“We were looking at different franchises, and we settled on Duck Donuts when we saw how popular it was, down in the Outer Banks [of North Carolina]…we knew there was a void for a breakfast spot in the Bristow area where we were looking…we really felt that Duck Donuts was young enough in it’s franchising that we could have some kind of impact on the company itself, and the operations of the company…and we love the product. The donuts speak for themselves,” said Scherer.

Duck Donuts are all vanilla cake donuts, that are made fresh to order, and come with 10 coating choices, including chocolate, maple and peanut butter, and five topping choices, according to Scherer.

“We fry all of our donuts made to order. So we don’t start frying donuts until people start ordering them…the donuts are actually fried on site – in front of your eyes. So you get a hot, fresh donut every time,” said Scherer.

According to Scherer, there will be more Duck Donuts locations in the area, in the future.

“We actually have the rights to four more franchise [locations] in the Northern Virginia area,” said Scherer.

The Bristow location is currently looking for 10 to 12 additional employees. According to Scherer, some positions require applicants to be 18 years or older, and they are currently looking for day shift workers, both full and part-time.

Prince William police officer punched, impersonated


Two individuals were charged this week, in separate incidents, for assaulting and impersonating Prince William police.

Prince William police officer attacked at Dumfries Walmart

One incident took place in the afternoon of August 29 at an apartment on Harwood Oaks Court in Dumfries, when Prince William police were called for a burglary.

According to Prince William police, a resident told officers that the burglary took place between 3:30 p.m. on August 28 and 1 p.m. on August 29.

There was no sign of forced entry, and entry may have been made through a back patio door that was not secure. Money, jewelry, cell phones and other items were reported missing, stated Prince William police.

On the afternoon of August 30, Prince William police were called to the Walmart at 17041 Jefferson Davis Highway in Dumfries for a shoplifter.

When the individual – 28-year old Dumfries man Mario Williams II – was being taken into custody, he punched a police officer in the face, stated Prince William police. Following the incident, Williams was determined to be involved in the earlier burglary.

Williams was brought to an area hospital for minor injuries, and the officer reported minor injuries, stated Prince William police.

Prince William police stated that Williams has been charged with one count of burglary, two counts of grand larceny, one count of assault and battery on a law enforcement officer, one count of obstruction of justice, and one count of providing false identification to avoid prosecution.

Prince William police impersonated

At 12:30 a.m. on August 30, Prince William police were called to the area of Sudley Manor Drive and Bethlehem Road in Manassas, for a call about a suspicious vehicle.

The caller, who was an off-duty Prince William police officer, told officers that when he was driving on Sudley Manor Drive, he saw a blue Pontiac G6 following him, stated Prince William police.

When the Pontiac was behind the caller’s car, the Pontiac’s driver – 18-year old Manassas man Joshua Rosene – turned on blue flashing lights that were mounted inside the car, according to Prince William police.

Believing that the vehicle was suspicious, the caller did not stop, and called Prince William police, before Rosene turned off the blue lights and drove away, stated Prince William police.

The caller provided the tag number and followed the car, stated Prince William police.

Prince William police stated Rosene is being charged with impersonating a police officer.

Do you know the street safety rules around school buses?

The school year in Virginia has just begun, and that means that school buses will be back out on the road.

Do YOU know the rules for driving and stopping around school buses?

When you see a school bus stopped with flashing red lights and an extended stop sign on the side of the bus, you must stop your vehicle from any direction, if you are on a highway, private road or school road. You must stay stopped until the area is clear, and the bus is moving again.

If a bus is loading or letting off passengers and the signals are not on, you still must stop.

If you are driving on a road in the opposite direction with a road that has a median or a barrier, and the bus is on the other side, then you do not have to stop.

School bus safety is the focus of many this week as children head back to school. The hashtag “#break4buses” is trending online.

Steve’s Auto Repair & Tire wants you to make sure you follow the rules of the road and be safe this school year.

Manassas townhouse fire displaces 7


PWC Fire and RescueA Manassas townhome caught on fire late yesterday morning.


According to Prince William fire and rescue, responders were called to the townhome on Monitor Court in Manassas at 11 a.m. on August 30.


When responders arrived, they found fire in the garage of the three-level townhome, and smoke coming from the side and front of the home, stated Prince William fire and rescue.


Prince William fire and rescue were able to put out the fire.


The Red Cross was called to the home to help the family displaced by the fire – five adults and two children, stated Prince William fire and rescue.


The Fire Marshal’s Office has estimated damages at $20,000, and a Building Inspector has declared the home unsafe.


According to Prince William fire and rescue, the Fire Marshal’s Office is currently investigating the cause of the fire.

How Chapel Springs is building a long-term relationship with Georgetown South in Manassas

Chapel Springs

Chapel Springs builds a long-lasting relationship with Georgetown South in Manassas.
Chapel Springs builds a long-lasting relationship with Georgetown South in Manassas.
Chapel Springs builds a long-lasting relationship with Georgetown South in Manassas.
Chapel Springs builds a long-lasting relationship with Georgetown South in Manassas.
Chapel Springs builds a long-lasting relationship with Georgetown South in Manassas.

Eleven-year-old Edwin Martinez had been looking forward to the Georgetown South Family Day event on Saturday, August 22, but said the day turned out to be even better than expected.

Standing in line for the Wild Rapids inflatable water slide with a half-dozen friends, Edwin said the community’s pavilion area was like a party with lots of different ways to enjoy the day.

“I give it an A+,” he said of the event, which was hosted by Chapel Springs Assembly of God in partnership with Iglesia Vida.

Chapel Springs has hosted Family Day at Georgetown South since 2011 as a way to show the love of Jesus Christ to the community. This year’s free event featured the extremely popular Wild Rapids slide, two inflatable bounce houses and face painting along with hot dogs and “sno cones.”

Family Day is the culmination of a week-long day camp for children in Kindergarten through 5th grade and gives church members a chance to connect with the families of those children, said Pastor Doug Dreesen. It’s also an opportunity to inform residents about the weekly English as a Second Language (ESL) classes hosted by Chapel Springs at the Georgetown South Community Center.

“Our goal is to come and help transform the community, really, for Christ. We want to tell them Jesus loves them, and we’re here to be His hands and feet, Dreesen said, adding that Chapel Springs is building a long-term relationship with Georgetown South.

Susana Ladino has lived in Georgetown South for three years, and stopped at the pavilion with her 6-year-old after they saw a group of children running toward the event.

“It’s beautiful. It looks very organized,” Ladino said through an interpreter.

Laura Leon also attended with her children. Leon has lived in the community for 11 years and has attended Family Day in the past. Through an interpreter, she said she was happy to enjoy a meal while her children played.

Sitting at a picnic table in the shade while children were enjoying activities nearby, Chapel Springs member Libny Fierro opened a Spanish Bible and led those seated around her to take turns reading from the book of Ephesians.

Ephesians has wonderful instruction about how we should live everyday– things like watching what we say and wearing the “armor of God” – and that was thought-provoking for those at the picnic table, Fierro said.

Fierro and her new friend Norma Arriaga handed out nine Spanish Bibles before the event was over. Having Bibles in Spanish was wonderful, Arriaga said, because while an English Bible is fine for the younger generation, she prefers to read in Spanish.

Asked what she learned from her discussion with Fierro and others at the picnic table, Arriaga had a quick reply: “God has a purpose for us and we need to follow His example,” she said through an interpreter.

Many church-goers focus on who they know and what people are wearing instead of spiritual matters, so reading and discussing the book of Ephesians was eye-opening, Arriaga added.

Ed and Miriam Bosch attend Chapel Springs and are preparing to become missionaries to Ecuador. They both participated in the day camp and were on hand for Family Day to celebrate a successful week.

“It’s been an awesome experience,” Ed Bosch said.

Chapel Springs member Denise Propps also volunteered to help at the day camp. She said it was important to her to attend Family Day and meet the families of the children she saw all week, noting that one child ran up and hugged her and said she had been looking specifically for her.

“It’s all about building relationships with the community,” Propps said. “We were made for relationships. We were made to love one another.”

And by building relationships, when someone has a need, we can pray for them as someone who knows them and cares for them, she added.

“I love it. It’s really what He’s called us to do, Propps said.

-Written by Christine Rodrigo

Manassas teen aids ISIS, jailed


A Manassas teen was sentenced to 11 years in jail today, after assisting the Islamic State in Iraq (ISIS).

Ali Shukri Amin, the 17-year old Manassas boy, was sentenced after being convicted of conspiring to provide support and resources to ISIS, according to a U.S. Justice Department release.

“Today’s sentencing demonstrates that those who use social media as a tool to provide support and resources to ISIL will be identified and prosecuted with no less vigilance than those who travel to take up arms with ISIL. The Department of Justice will continue to pursue those that travel to fight against the United States and our allies, as well as those individuals that recruit others on behalf of ISIL in the homeland,” said U.S. Eastern District of Virginia Attorney Dana Boente, according to a release.

Boente stated that ISIS has been using social media to recruit individuals and spread their message.

Amin was a student at Osborne Park High School in Manassas.

According to Prince William County Police Department Chief Steve Hudson, school staff had said Amin had exhibited some warning signs with suspicious behavior.

“Observations made by school staff and subsequent follow-up by the School Resource Officer were some of the earlier indicators of suspicious behavior regarding this individual,” stated Hudson in a release.

Amin pled guilty to all charges on June 11, according to a release.

More from a U.S. Justice Department release:

According to court documents, Amin admitted to using Twitter to provide advice and encouragement to ISIL and its supporters.  Amin, who used the Twitter handle @Amreekiwitness, provided instruction on how to use Bitcoin, a virtual currency, to mask the provision of funds to ISIL, as well as facilitation to ISIL supporters seeking to travel to Syria to fight with ISIL.  Additionally, Amin admitted that he facilitated travel for Reza Niknejad, an 18-year-old Prince William County resident who traveled to Syria to join ISIL in January 2015.  Niknejad was charged on June 10, 2015, in the Eastern District of Virginia with conspiring to provide material support to terrorists, conspiring to provide material support to ISIL, and conspiring to kill and injure people abroad.

U.S. District Judge Claude M. Hilton presided over the case and delivered the sentence. This case was investigated by the Joint Terrorism Task Force of the FBI’s Washington Field Office. Assistant U.S. Attorney Michael P. Ben’Ary and Special Assistant U.S. Attorney Caroline H. Friedman prosecuted the case. Substantial assistance was provided by Trial Attorney Stephen Sewell of the National Security Division’s Counterterrorism Section.

Virginia eyes Tropical Storm Erika


S115331tormy weather may be ahead for Virginia.

According to the Virginia Department of Emergency Management, Tropical Storm Erika may become a hurricane by Monday, and has the potential to hit Virginia.

The storm is currently approaching the Dominican Republic, and is still impacting the Virgin Islands and Puerto Rico, stated the National Weather Service.

Tropical Storm Erika currently has wind speeds of 50 miles per hour, according to the National Weather Service.

According to the track, released by the National Weather Service, the storm could impact Virginia by Monday.

Girl, 12, sexually assaulted at Manassas Walmart


Prince William police are searching for a man, following a sexual assault of a minor at a Manassas Walmart.

According to Prince William police, officers were called to the Walmart on 8386 Sudley Road in Manassas on the morning of August 22.

The victim – a 12 year old Manassas girl – told police that on the evening of August 21, she was shopping at the Walmart, when she was approached by an unknown individual, stated Prince William police.

During the incident, the individual inappropriately touched the victim over her clothing, according to Prince William police.

No one was injured.

The Prince William police are looking for the individual that is described as a Hispanic male, between 30 and 40 years old with a thin build, short black hair, and a goatee. He was last seen in surveillance footage wearing a white t-shirt, blue jeans, and black and white Nike sneakers, stated Prince William police.

How Downtown Manassas changed empty buildings into a regional entertainment destination

Hopkins Candy Factory under revitalization.
Fairfax Windows & Doors Before
The farmers market at Harris Pavilion in Downtown Manassas.
Changes in Downtown Manassas.
Changes in Downtown Manassas.

When people visit the farmer’s market at the Harris Pavilion or navigate the crowds during First Fridays, they are surrounded by a beautiful historic downtown, thriving businesses, and lots of friends and neighbors. It is hard to believe that just 30 years ago, the streets of historic Manassas were desolate, buildings were in disrepair, and almost half of the storefronts were empty and boarded up.

How did downtown turn around?

In 1985, a group of business owners, residents, and City leaders rallied. Determined to revive the heart of Manassas, they needed to lure businesses and customers back from the sprawling strip malls and shopping malls. A series of community meetings explored both problems and opportunities before crafting a vision for a vibrant, walkable downtown filled with restaurants, shops, arts, and a city square

To realize this vision, the City embraced the Main Street Four-Point Approach that was designed by the National Trust for Historic Preservation to revive struggling historic downtowns. At this time, Historic Manassas Inc. (HMI) was born.

In 2003, HMI was nationally recognized by the National Trust for Historic Preservation for revitalization excellence. Downtown Manassas was held up as a model when it won a Great American Main Street Award for rehabbing 54 buildings, dropping the vacancy rate to zero, creating 350 new jobs, and spurring $12

million in private investment.

These successes are attributed to HMI’s strong public-private partnerships, committed vision, and volunteer support. Main Street programs like HMI rely on dedicated community members who volunteer on committees and the board of directors to help carry out its work together with staff.  

The Main Street Approach is also unique in that it tackles multiple problems throughout the community at once. Instead of relying on a single “white knight,such as a stadium or a company to save a community, Main Street rebuilds a downtown by leveraging its local assets like heritage, historic buildings, independent businesses, walkable streets, and events. Community projects and improvements are done incrementally

Gradual successes over time have made Manassas a place where people want to spend time and money again.

Downtown’s revitalization got a jump start in the 1990s when Virginia Railway Express started commuter service and the museum was built, which created an attraction for new visitors. Businessman Loy E. Harris sustained the momentum by restoring three historic buildings, including the 1906 Opera House. 

This motivated others to fix up their buildings, too, and new businesses began opening. Later, the community was given a place to gather when a vacant half-acre lot in the heart of downtown was transformed into the city square and an all-season pavilion, which was named after Harris.

HMI isn’t resting on its laurels; it continues to work in partnership with the City and local businesses to strengthen the downtown. It hosts a full calendar of events all year long and supports those produced by others

In September alone, the Historic Downtown Manassas Bridal Showcase will show off the local businesses that make Manassas a perfect wedding destination, while Bands, Brews & Barbecue turn the City into a regional entertainment destination. Manassasgrowing cluster of restaurants was made even stronger when the Battle Street enhancements created space for outdoor dining. And, excitement continues to grow with each new piece of public art, arts-oriented venue, and gallery.

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