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The future of retail in the City of Manassas: Why some stores are perfect, and some aren’t

retail shopping in Manassas

The City of Manassas recently completed a retail study using H. Blount Hunter Retail & Real Estate Research Co. The study was designed to examine the market and trade area from the perspective of a retailer. This economic analysis is intended to assist in recruiting retail businesses to Manassas and guide future planning and development efforts.

The City analyzed several existing and potential retail trade areas where shoppers can find a mix of chain and independent businesses. These areas are primarily located on transportation corridors and include Sudley Road, Mathis Avenue, Liberia Avenue, and Route 28/Nokesville Road.  

The analysis also included Historic Downtown which is both on a transportation corridor and is a destination center. Hunter identified several sites within these areas that are well-positioned to capitalize on emerging consumer trends and market factors. 

Route 28

For example, residential development has been successfully sustaining retailers along Route 28. It is a high-visibility area that is well traveled, which are benefits that are attractive to retailers. And, in the next few years, Manassas Gateway between Godwin Drive and the Prince William Parkway will begin developing with an exciting mix of housing, office space, entertainment businesses, and retail space. New residents, office workers plus visitors to the planned hotel, Heritage Brewing and other planned attractions will generate the critical foot traffic that new retailers want.

Mathis Avenue and Centreville Road

Another area for retail development is along Mathis Avenue and Centreville Road. This major commuter route is lined with businesses that generally offer “convenience goods.” 

There is incredible potential for refreshing the look of the existing shopping centers with façade improvements and enhancing parking lots with landscaping to completely change their appearance. Aesthetic improvements can go a long way in helping to fill vacancies as well as to attract high-quality tenants. Also, the large parking lots offer plenty of room for developing pad sites along Mathis Avenue, which means more commercial buildings can be built within them to create space for new businesses.

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Downtown

In Downtown Manassas the unique historic district is set apart from other commercial areas in the region because it is filled with independent restaurants and retailers that can’t be enjoyed anywhere else. It offers an attractive sense of place, a storied history, a year-long calendar of events, and experience-driven visits from local residents as well as people who come from miles away.  

Hunter points out that unlike other shopping areas in the D.C. Metro region, shoppers will travel greater distances to the downtown for the “powerful combination of community events, dining, and specialty shopping in a walking environment that has niche appeal.” 

New development opportunities may present themselves along areas that are underutilized – such as the commuter parking lots surrounding the Manassas Museum — and can accommodate new, mixed-use construction. Future development can likely attract even more boutiques, galleries, and restaurants, especially since most chain businesses require bigger spaces than what is available there.

Chain businesses have very specific requirements

Retail development is a complex process. Residents of a community frequently ask that a specific retailer be recruited to the City; however, retailers, especially large chain businesses, have very specific requirements that they look for when choosing a new location. These include a minimum building size, access to highways, and certain customer demographics – typically income levels. 

Since the City can’t grow in size, the retail that Manassas can recruit has to fit within the existing buildings or on the vacant land that is available. Each retailer’s preference for where they want to open a location is different, too. Some want to be near their competition and others want to be near other stores that appeal to similar customers. 

All chains avoid opening new locations in close proximity to their existing locations because they don’t want a new store to steal sales away from an existing one. This is why your favorite store in a nearby town might not open another location in the City. 

For example specialty retailers currently located in Fair Lakes, Potomac Mills, and the growing commercial corridors in Gainesville to the west may not be able to locate in Manassas. Consumers travel greater distances to take advantage of these mall environments and consequently the retailers will space their locations much further apart.

Why a cashier asks for your zip code

Many people don’t realize what a complex science retailers practice when siting new stores. In addition to analyzing complementary and competitor businesses, they use demographic information, drive times and zip code data which they get from your credit card company whether you shop in a physical store or online and when you otherwise provide it. Have you ever wondered why a cashier asks for your zip code when checking out with your purchase?

Choosing poorly is the worst decision a retailer can make. In addition to the capital cost of opening a new store, companies lock into lengthy leases. Plus, closing a store can tarnish a company’s image in the eyes of the consumer who wonders why the business failed and may attribute it to other peoples use and perception of the product.

For a City of approximately 40,000 people, Manassas has more opportunities for retail development than experts typically anticipate for communities of that size. This is because there is a customer base of about 150,000 people within a five mile radius, which builds the potential for retail recruitment.  

Future development opportunities and destination commercial districts means there is a lot in store for retailing in Manassas.

This post is written as part of a paid content partnership between Potomac Local and City of Manassas to showcase businesses and economic development in the city.

News
Dominion repairs power lines at Graham Park Shores

Crews with Dominion Virginia Power are still working to repair power lines that went down about 4 p.m. 

A car crash brought down the lines and damaged power poles at the intersection of Graham Park and Cabin roads in in Triangle.

Drivers who live in the Graham Park Shores neighborhood were directed to use Fuller Heights Road, according to Prince William police. 

News
Residents on Potomac River Coal Ash Plan: We weren’t notified

Coal ash

Virginia environmental officials took questions Tuesday night from the public about a plan to treat toxic water and drain it into the Potomac River.

Residents who live near Dominion Virginia Power’s Possum Point Power Station outside Dumfries and across from Quantico say they’re fearful of the plan, which could lead to higher than normal levels of heavy metals in Quantico Creek and Potomac River that would flow downstream to the Chesapeake Bay.

Those waters would be drained from a large coal ash pond at the power plant called “D pond.”

Coal ash is what’s left behind after coal is burned to create electricity. Possum Point switched to gas technology and stopped burning coal in 2003. Coal ash has been stored in water ponds at the site since the 1950s.

Dominion says it must get the water out of “D Pond” before it can cap and close it. Virginia’s Water Control Board is set to vote January 14 on final approval of a permit, written by the state’s Department of Environmental Quality that will set limits on the levels of toxic materials allowed in the water if the toxic water treatment and drainage begins.

DEQ will stop accepting public comments on the permit on December 14.

A toe drain at Possum Point has been draining water from a coal ash pond, groundwater from a natural dam containing the water in the coal ash pond, and storm water, for about 50 years, said Virginia DEQ spokesman Bryant Taylor.

The draft permit does not set safe limits on the amount of heavy metals that may come out of that drain. It does set maximum limits on 14 “toxics” commonly found in coal ash, including arsenic, cadmium and zinc.

The permit will require monitoring of sediment and water at the toe drain site to occur weekly. Dominion must monitor levels of heavy metals and report back to state officials, per the permit written by DEQ.

“We’ve done tests in the area of the toe drain that show higher than normal toxins int he water, and you have that data,” Potomac River Keeper Vice President Nick Nutter told Virginia Department of Environmental Quality officials.

The tests of sediment and water taken around the toe drain do show higher than permitted levels of heavy metals, but there is some “uncertainty to that data,” added DEQ officials.

Fishing advisories are frequently issued for the Potomac River warning fishermen not to eat carp, American eel, and catfish they catch, said Taylor. In November, Taylor told Potomac Local there are not accelerated levels of heavy metals in the water or the sediment at the toe drain.

Working under a permit issued in 2013, Dominion moved coal ash from four other ponds at the power plant into “D Pond” where they wish to drain it, between May and October 2015. The movement consolidation of the ash is the impetus for the new permit.

Some asked if water has been leaking out of the toe drain for 50 years, what is the need for the new permit now being considered.

“The recent stirring up of the ash is not aligned with [the drainage that’s been] going on during the past 50 years,” said Taylor.

Quantico Mayor Kevin Brown told DEQ officials his town council and residents were not notified of the plan to allow Dominion to treat and maintain the water. DEQ officials confirmed they notified Town of Dumfries officials, but not those in Quantico.

“I’m going to consult with our town’s legal council and see what options we have to delay this action,” said Brown. “January 14 is just not enough time for us.”

Several residents at Tuesday’s meeting noted a lack of communication from DEQ notifying them of Dominion’s permit request. The agency held a two-hour public meeting November 18 at the request of elected officials to answer questions from the public on the plan.

Prince William County Public Works chief Mark Aveni said the Prince William County Board of Supervisors passed a resolution asking for a 60-day extension of the public comment period on the Possum Point permit.

“If the comment period is not extended, the Prince William County Board of Supervisors will oppose the issuance of the permit,” said Aveni.

Delegate Scott Surovell said he, along with elected officials in Fairfax County, requested a 60-day extension on the public comment period but were denied. 

The process of treating the coal ash water and draining it would be a first for Dominion. The company is in talks with a third party about using a large sand filter to treat the water and then to release it, said Dominion Director of Electricity and Environment Cathy Taylor.

The treating and drainage of water at Possum Point would begin shortly after Dominion’s permit is approved. Once the pond is drained leaving behind coal ash, a synthetic liner will be put in place in at the pond, then 18 inches of soil, and then a 6-inch vegetation layer that will have plants and grasses, said Taylor.

If Dominion’s permit is approved, other utility companies will monitor how Dominion’s treatment process to learn best practices, said Taylor.

More than 50 people attended the public hearing at the Northern Virginia Regional DEQ Headquarters in Woodbridge. It was the final public hearing scheduled before the state Water Control Board’s vote on Jan. 14, 2016.

News
Here are the winners of the 41st Annual Dumfries Christmas Parade

The judges decided the best floats and marching groups in the 41st Annual Dumfries Christmas Parade. 

 Scouting  
Girl Scout Unit 80-08 and Daisy Troop 3799 1st Place
Girl Scout Nations Capitol 80-01 2nd Place
Girl Scout Unit 80-03, 80-04, Troop 4980, Triangle Elementary 3rd Place
   
                                                    Youth Group  
Star of Bethlehem Christian Academy 1st Place
Nikki’s Daycare and Learning Center 2nd Place
Top Teens of America 3rd Place
   
                                               Non Profit/Volunteer  
Prince William Forest National Park 1st Place
Rolling Thunder 2nd Place
Woodbridge Kiwanis Club 3rd Place
Triangle Lodge 293 3rd Place
   
                                        Police, Fire, and Honor Guard  
Dumfries Triangle Rescue Squad 1st Place
Prince William County Sheriffs Office 2nd Place
Dumfries Volunteer Fire Department 3rd Place
   
                                             Vehicles and Motorcycles  
DMV Dynasty Auto Club 1st Place
Top Flight Corvette 2nd Place
Kings of Heart MC 3rd Place
   
                                       Non-Performing Business Group  
DJ’s Towing 1st Place
Waggys Towing 2nd Place
TD Bank 3rd Place
   
                                                         ROTC  
Potomac Navy ROTC 1st Place
Freedom High School AF JROTC 2nd Place
Woodbridge JROTC 3rd Place
   
                                                Performance Groups  
Graham Park Dance 1st Place
Wesley Spangler 2nd Place
Old Guard and Fife Drum Corps 3rd Place
All that and Jazz 3rd Place
   
                                                Church Groups  
Mt. Zion Baptist Church 1st Place
Dumfries United Methodist Church 2nd Place
   
                                     Best Performance Business Group  
Luv-N-Laffs Clown Alley 1st Place
United Martial Arts 2nd Place
Sweet Frog 3rd Place

 
 
“Plaques will be made for every group that placed in their category and will be given out at the awards ceremony on Wednesday, Jan. 6, 2015 at 6 p.m. in the Community Center next to Town Hall,” said Dumfries Community Services Director Brittany Heine. 

Chapel Springs produces unique Christmas CD, offers free concert in Stafford

Christmas music is so popular that many radio stations start playing holiday tunes before Thanksgiving. So giving away free CDs of Christmas music is a perfect way to invite people to celebrate Christmas at Chapel Springs Church, which has campuses in Bristow and Stafford.

Matchless King is the title of the newly-released CD written and produced by Chapel Springs Worship Pastor Josh Wesley and several key members of the church’s worship team. The CD takes a different approach from most Christmas CDs, though, because it tells the story not just of Jesus Christ’s birth, but God’s plan to redeem mankind through Jesus’ death and resurrection.

Matchless King features five songs including several that were written specifically for this project, and new arrangements of other classic Christmas songs.

“We wanted to think outside the box” in designing tools to invite the community to worship at Chapel Springs, said Bristow resident and Chapel Springs worship leader Aaron West, who has been a member of the worship team for about 15 years. Pastor Josh suggested creating a Christmas CD, and as the team worked through the details it realized that a CD would be a great invitational tool and would be ideal as the focus for the church’s Christmas celebration this year, West said.

“The idea was to deliver the gospel through the CD, and give the narrative from creation to the death of Christ, which is unusual for a Christmas CD,” said West, who has some experience in music production, but earned his first producing credit on this project.

The CD will be distributed throughout the community for free, and also can be downloaded for free at chapelsprings.org

Music from the recording will be featured at several upcoming Chapel Springs Christmas concerts. The first concert will take place Sunday, December 13 at 6 p.m. at Chapel Spring’s Stafford campus, which meets at Shirley Heim Middle School, 320 Telegraph Road in Stafford, VA 22554.

Kaleb Weaver and Michaelah Faith, who lead worship every Sunday at Chapel Springs-Stafford, also played a vital role on the project – helping to write and arrange songs. Faith, Weaver and Wesley also are featured as soloists on the CD.

“Matchless King is about taking the church outside the four walls. We have a lot of gifted and talented people in the church, but if we contain that talent within the building, we’re not fulfilling what God wants us to do with what he has given us,” Weaver said.

 

This post is written by Chapel Springs Church as part of a paid content partnership between Potomac Local and Chapel Springs Church.

News
Dumfries holds 41st Annual Christmas Parade

Dumfries held its 41st Annual Christmas Parade today. The theme was “A winter’s dream.” 

The parade route took floats and parade participants down Main Street toward Dumfries Shopping Plaza. 

The parade started at noon and wrapped up before 1 p.m. Police closed a portion of Main Street (Route 1 south) to traffic during the parade. 

Following the parade, the Weems-Botts House held a holiday open house from 2 to 5 p.m. 

Officials were scheduled to gather at 5 p.m. outside Town Hall to light the town Christmas Tree. 

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Six area shopping centers giving away $500 to $1,000 this holiday season

Six Prince William County shopping centers are giving you the chance to win big this holiday season.

Bristow Center, Davis Ford Crossing, Dillingham Square and Smoketown Plaza are taking part in their annual Holiday Shopping Spree, a promotion that has one lucky winner at each center walking away with $500 worth of gift certificates to the specific center and a $1,000 donation to their favorite local school.

At Bull Run Plaza, the winner receives $1,000 worth of gift certificates to spend at the center, as well as a $1,000 donation to the winner’s favorite local school.

At Dominion Valley Market Square, five winners will each receive $100 worth of gift certificates to center.

Entry forms are available in the shopping centers’ stores and online.

 

DillinghamSquareDonatesToAntietam Elementary
To enter the Bristow
Center’s Holiday Shopping Spree, click here: http://bit.ly/BristowCenterHoliday2015. Bristow is located at the intersection of Nokesville and Linton Hall roads, features Harris Teeter and CVS/pharmacy.

Enter Bull Run Plaza’s Holiday Shopping Spree here: http://bit.ly/BullRunPlazaHoliday2015. Bull Run is located at the intersection of Route 234 and Sudley Manor Drive in Manassas, and includes Dick’s Sporting Goods, Shoppers Food & Pharmacy, Office Depot and Chili’s.

Click here to enter Davis Ford Crossing’s Holiday Shopping Spree: http://bit.ly/DavisFordCrossingHoliday2015. Davis Ford Crossing is at the intersection of Liberia Road and Prince William Parkway in Manassas. The center features L.A. Fitness, Petco and Staples.

Enter Dillingham Square’s Holiday Shopping Spree here: http://bit.ly/DillinghamSquareHoliday2015. Dillingham Square is at the intersection of Old Bridge Road and Dillingham Square in Lake Ridge. The center includes Food Lion, Gold’s Gym and Brittany’s.

Enter the Dominion Valley Market Square’s Holiday Shopping Spree here: http://bit.ly/DominionValleyHoliday2015. Anchored by Giant Food, Dominion Valley Market Square is located at the intersection of James Madison Highway (Route 15) and Dominion Valley Drive in Haymarket. 

To enter Smoketown Plaza’s Holiday Shopping Spree, click here: http://bit.ly/SmoketownHoliday2015. Smoketown Plaza is at the intersection of Smoketown Road and Minnieville Road in Woodbridge. The center includes Lowe’s Home Center, Glory Days Grill and Dunkin’ Donuts.

Dillingham Square and Smoketown entry forms are due no later than 10 a.m. on December 9. All Bristow, Bull Run Plaza and Davis Ford Crossing entry forms are due by 10 a.m. on December 10. Dominion Valley entry forms are due no later than 10 a.m. on December 11.

News
70th Annual Greater Manassas Christmas Parade welcomes Ed Asner as the Grand Marshal

 

So many holiday events this weekend: 

The Christmas season gets underway this weekend on our area with the following events: 

Manassas Christmas Tree Lighting — Friday 5:30 p.m. 

The Christmas Tree in Downtown Manassas will be illuminated at 6:30 p.m. The festivities begin at 5:30 p.m. when Santa Claus arrives at the Manassas Train Depot. There will be holiday music at 6 p.m. 

Attendees can take free hayrides around Downtown, and skate at Harris Pavilion.

70th Annual Greater Manassas Christmas Parade — Saturday 10 a.m. 

The Greater Manassas Christmas Parade is honored to announce our 2015 Grand Marshal, Ed Asner! Mr. Asner comes to us with a prolific resume and may be best known for his role as Lou Grant on the Mary Tyler Moore Show and later on a spin off titled Lou Grant.

The younger generation might best recognize him as the voice of the older man in the 2009 Pixar film Up or as Santa Claus in the 2003 movie Elf. Mr. Asner is known to be a versatile, committed, eloquent and talented actor and has received seven Emmy Awards – the most any man has ever received.

The Greater Manassas Christmas Parade has been a hallmark event for 70 years providing entertainment for families and friends in the Greater Manassas community and beyond! It sets the mood for the holiday season!

The parade features over 100 marching units, numerous floats, high-flying balloons, several dancing groups-in all totaling over 2,000 participants each year! Come watch this year’s theme ‘Lights…Camera…Christmas!’ For more information, visit gmchristmasparade.org.

41st Annual Dumfries Christmas Parade — Saturday noon 

Join residents from Dumfries and eastern Prince William County for the 41st Annual Dumfries Christmas Parade at noon on Saturday. The parade route takes marchers and floats down Main Street (Route 1) past Town Hall. The Dumfries-Triangle Volunteer Fire Deparment, Dumfries-Triangle Rescue Squad, as well as several churches and businesses participate in the parade each year.

A tree lighting will follow the parade at 5 p.m. at Town Hall.

Lunch with Santa — Saturday 12:30 p.m. 

Come have lunch with the man in the big red suit at 12:30 p.m. in the Old Manassas Courthouse.

Monza / Carmellos collects gently used coats for gift cards

Monza of Historic Manassas will be collecting gently used coats to donate to SERVE in exchange for a $10 Monza or Carmello’s gift card and free hot chocolate and coffee on Sat., Dec. 5 during the Greater Manassas Christmas Parade. Coat donations will be accepted from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. at Monza at 9405 Battle Street in Downtown Manassas, Va., as well as throughout December to support SERVE of Manassas, Va.

They’ll also be accepting new toys for children of CASA (Court Appointed Special Advocates for Children of Manassas, Va.) in exchange for a $10 Monza/Carmello’s gift card during December. For more information, go to eatmonza.com. One gift card will be given per coat and/or per new toy.

“We all feel the drop in temperature, and for those in need, sometimes one warm coat is hard to come by which is why we wanted to help collect as many coats as possible for the our local SERVE program,” said Alice Pires, owner of Monza and Carmello’s in Historic Manassas, Va. “We’re excited to collect toys for the kids of CASA, let’s try to make sure no one is forgotten this holiday,” said Pires.

Traffic
Ahead for bus riders: OmniRide Delays Thursday, schedule changes Monday

If you’re riding OmniRide tomorrow, get ready for some delays due to the lighting of the National Christmas Tree. 

This is the official word sent out to bus riders from the Potomac and Rappahannock Transportation Commission: 

This is a reminder that the National Tree Lighting Ceremony is scheduled for the evening of Thursday, December 3, on the Ellipse near the White House. In anticipation of the extreme traffic congestion, PRTC will activate the Emergency Service Plan for the AFTERNOON/EVENING commute on December 3.

Beginning at 2 p.m., OmniRide buses will only pick up from the Franconia-Springfield Metro Station for eastern Prince Willi am County passengers and Tysons Corner Metro Station for Manassas, Gainesville and Linton Hall passengers. Midday trips meeting at the Pentagon at 12:34 p.m. will operate at the normal times along the regular routes. All other afternoon/evening trips will depart from the Metro stations. All regular drop-off stops will be served. Services from the Metro stations will continue until 7:30 p.m. except for Prince William and Manassas Metro Direct buses, which will continue operating until their last published departure time.

Bus fares will be $3.85 cash or $3.10 on your SmarTrip card.

It’s also time for PRTC’s Fall Service Change. The commuter bus operator says to expect changes to some schedules: 

Timetable changes will be made to the following schedules. Routes not listed below will not change.

OmniRide:

-Dale City – Pentagon/Crystal City – Timetable changes.

-Dale City – Navy Yard – Timetable changes.

-Lake Ridge – Pentagon/Crystal City – Timetable changes.

Montclair – Timetable changes.

-Manassas — The route will no longer serve Williamson Boulevard. Additionally, three more AM Manassas OmniRide trips will become express trips, originating at the Portsmouth Commuter Lot. This is in addition to the three express trips on the current AM schedule.

OmniLink:

Woodbridge/Lake Ridge – Timepoint changes from Prince William & Hoffman to Prince William & Hillendale; timetable changes.

-Dale City – The first three weekday inbound trips will begin at Dale Blvd. & Orangewood instead of the Chinn Center. Alternate service from Chinn Center is available on Woodbridge A OmniLink. Timepoints change from Mapledale Plaza to Dale & Orangewood/Dale &Trident.

-Dumfries – First three AM weekday trips and first AM Saturday trip will begin at the Lofts instead of the 7-11 on Fuller Heights Road.

Route 1 OmniLink – Timepoint changes from Dumfries Shopping Center to Fraley & Williamstown.

-Manassas – Timetable changes.

Manassas Park – Timetable changes.

Metro Direct:

-Manassas Metro Direct – Timetable changes.

-Linton Hall Me tro Direct – Timetable changes.

Cross County Connector – Timetable changes.

OmniRide commuter buses provide transit services for those traveling from Prince William County and Manassas to points in Northern Virginia and Washington. OmniLink local buses provide transit services for those traveling inside Prince William County, Manassas, and Manassas Park.

Aurora Flight Sciences launches world’s first 3D-printed Unmanned Aerial Vehicle

A 3D printed drone

Ten years ago it might have been hard for many people to imagine being able to send a digital file to a printer and producing a three-dimensional object. However, this advanced technology is becoming more widely used in many different industries and is inspiring innovations like 3D-printed cars that can drive and medical devices that can save lives.

Today, Manassas-based Aurora Flight Sciences is taking this technology one step further. The company unveiled the world’s largest and fastest 3D-printed, unmanned aircraft at the Dubai Airshow in November. This high-speed, jet-powered unmanned aerial vehicle (UAV) flies faster than 150 miles per hour.

Aurora partnered with Stratasys Ltd., a 3D printing and additive manufacturing company, to design and produce an aircraft using 3D-printed, lightweight plastics and metal. This UAV was developed in half the time it typically takes using traditional manufacturing methods.

By using 3D printers, Aurora’s aerospace engineers can build customized products quicker and produce them more cost effectively, which creates new opportunities for the company. For example, the U.S. Air Force recently announced an initiative called “Affordable, Attritable Aircraft” to significantly reduce aircraft procurement costs. The development of lower-cost, 3D-printed UAVs will make it more “affordable” for the military to lose a drone in combat situations.

“Part of the Air Force’s challenge is to separate manufacturing costs from production rate and quantity,” says Dan Campbell, Aerospace Research Engineer at Aurora Flight Sciences. “3D printing is a major enabler of meeting their needs.”

Additive manufacturing, or 3D printing, uses a “materials printer” to produce a three-dimensional object from a computer model. The printer builds the object by placing layers of a material on top of each other. Aurora and Stratasys mostly used a strong thermoplastic that is resistant to heat and chemicals to build their UAV. The materials that they chose significantly reduce the aircraft’s weight but still meet the Federal Aviation Administration’s requirements for flame, smoke, and toxicity. The UAV has a 9-foot wingspan and only weighs 33 pounds.

“Whether by air, water, or on land, lightweight vehicles use less fuel. This enables companies to lower operational costs as well as to reduce environmental impact,” says Scott Sevcik, Aerospace & Defense Senior Business Manager for Stratasys. “Using only the exact material needed for production is expected to reduce acquisition cost by eliminating waste and reducing scrap and recycling costs.”

Aurora Flight Sciences and Stratasys began working together through the U.S. Air Force Research Laboratory program. For four years, the two companies have been collaborating on developing novel materials and design methods for manufacturing small aircraft using 3D printing.

Having already achieved similar success with unmanned aircraft developed under Department of Defense-funded programs, the Aurora and Stratasys team is excited to publicly demonstrate their achievements. The internally funded UAV showcased at the Dubai Airshow was developed specifically to demonstrate their technology and show the world what can be done with 3D printing and aerospace engineering.

Aurora Flight Sciences, which was founded in 1989, has its headquarters in the City of Manassas and is a long-standing member of the business community. This leading developer and manufacturer of UAVs and aerospace vehicles has won industry recognition and awards for its cutting-edge technology.

Aurora is one of the top ten employers in the City with 188 staff members who are active volunteers with civic organizations and STEM education programs. Since 2003, Aurora has been giving back to the community by supporting the Team America Rocketry Challenge, a national student rocket design contest, through sponsorship and mentoring of local middle and high school teams.

The company has grown considerably over the years and has expanded several times to include production plants in West Virginia and Mississippi; a research and development center in Cambridge, Massachusetts, where it collaborates with the Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT); and a new office in California’s Silicon Valley at Mountain View.

This post is written by the City of Manassas to showcase businesses and economic development in the city in a paid content partnership with Potomac Local.

News
Man shot in leg during argument

A man is charged with domestic assault and battery along with possession of a firearm by a convicted felon after police said he got into a fight with a woman.

The woman also faces chargeds, police said. 

Here’s more in a press release: 

Aggravated Malicious Wounding | Reckless Handling of a Firearm – On November 29th at 6:46AM, officers responded to a residence located in the 18500 block of Amidon Ave in Triangle (22172) to investigate a shooting. The investigation revealed that two occupants of the home, identified as Nathaniel BATTLE and Donna PERRY, were involved in a verbal altercation which escalated. During the encounter, Donna PERRY retrieved a firearm and fired a round into an interior wall of the home. The argument continued, at which point a third occupant of the home, identified as La Vonne BINNIX, attempted to break up the altercation and fired his own weapon twice. One of the rounds fired struck BATTLE in the leg causing a non-life threatening injury while the other struck the floor. He was transported to an area hospital for treatment. After the incident, BINNIX fled the home and was eventually located later in the day. Following the investigation, all parties were charged in connection to the incident.

PERRY

Perry

Arrested on November 29th:

La Vonne Michael BINNIX, 21, of 18525 Amidon Ave in Triangle

Charged with aggravated malicious wounding and use of a firearm in commission of a felony

 

Nathaniel Jerome BATTLE, 27, of 18525 Amidon Ave in Triangle

Charged with domestic assault & battery and possession of a firearm by a convicted felon

 

Donna Marie PERRY, 49, of 18525 Amidon Ave in Triangle

Charged with possession of a firearm by a convicted felon and reckless handling of a firearm

               

Court Date: January 11, 2016 | Bond: Unavailable

Parades, pancakes, ornaments, & Santa pet photos: Don’t miss holiday fun at the Manassas Park Community Center

 

‘Tis the Season at the Manassas Park Community Center!

There’s just something about the holiday season that makes it one of my favorite times of the year. Maybe it’s because this is the season for spreading happiness, togetherness, and well-wishes to everybody you meet. To help you get into the spirit of the season the Manassas Park Community Center has lots of special events lined up!

The festivities kick off on Thursday, December 3 from 7 to 8:30 p.m. where you and your family can decorate dough ornaments for only $3 a person. You can literally create a lifelong memory to include on your Christmas tree or to keep at your desk all year round.

As a baking enthusiast, nothing brings me more holiday cheer than gingerbread houses! You and your family can decorate your own gingerbread houses Thursday, December 10 from 7 to 8:30 p.m. for just $5 per participant. We’ll supply everything but feel free to bring your own special candy to make your houses extra unique.

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Our popular 10th Annual Light Parade is on Saturday, December 12 starting at 5:45 p.m. There’s a new route this year! It will start at the General’s Ridge Golf Course and follow Manassas Drive to the Manassas Park Community Center. There’s still time to have your vehicle be a part of the parade. Contact Tony Thomas at t.thomas@manassasparkva.gov for more details.

Santa will be visiting the Manassas Park Community Center for a pancake breakfast on Saturday, December 19 from 9 to 11 a.m. It’s only $5 per person for Breakfast with Santa and kids 2 years old and under can join us for free. Make sure to bring your wishlist!

Your pups can meet Santa on December 19 as well! From 11:30 a.m. to 12:30 p.m. bring your dogs to take pictures with Santa during our Santa Paws special event! It’s only $5 per dog and you’ll get a high quality digital photo to keep for years to come.

In addition to all of our special events, our monthly promotion gets in on the holiday action! Get 12% off an annual Basic or All-Access membership or 12% off any rental you book during the month of December! For more details on memberships and rentals you can visit our website at www.ManassasParkCommunityCenter.com or call the front desk at 703-335-8872.

We hope to see you soon here at the Manassas Park Community Center!

News
Davis charged with stabbing Triangle man

A man is charged with malicious wounding after a 23-year-old was stabbed.

Here’s more in a police press release:

Malicious Wounding – On November 28th at 8:30PM, officers responded to the 16700 block of Harwood Oaks Ct in Dumfries (22026) to investigate a stabbing. The victim, a 23 year old man of Triangle, reported to police that he was in the area of Harwood Oaks Ct when he was involved in a verbal altercation with an unknown individual. During the argument, the suspect who was later identified as the accused, produced a knife and stabbed the victim in the abdominal area. The accused left the scene prior to police arrival but was later located in his residence nearby and arrested without incident. The victim was flown to a nearby hospital for non-life threatening injuries.

Arrested on November 28th:

John Elkannah Davis Mead IV, 24, 16680 Harwood Oaks Ct in Dumfries

Charged with malicious wounding 

Court Date: Pending| Bond: Held WITHOUT Bond 

Sentara to host info meeting for Junior Volunteer program


Information Session for the 201
6 Junior Volunteer Program

Sentara Northern Virginia Medical Center Auxiliary will be conducting an information session about the Junior Volunteer program on Saturday December 12, 2015 at 10:00 am at the Hylton Education Center located inside the hospital’s garden level.

Every year in January, the Auxiliary opens its doors to new applicants. It is a competitive process into the program and once in, volunteering can be demanding if not well managed as many high school students are taxed with so many other commitments.

The purpose of the information session is to provide an opportunity for parents and their high school age students to come and learn more about the program before investing in the application process.

Attendees are asked to park in the Visitor Parking lot located in the back of the hospital. The Information session will start promptly at 10a.m. and will last approximately one hour.

Junior Volunteer Information Session

2300 Opitz Blvd

Woodbridge, VA 22191

Hylton Education Center

12/6/2014

10:00-11:00 am

For additional information, please contact Phim Gilberry, (703) 523-1345 or visit our webpage.

 

News
Treat and release: What Dominion wants to do with toxic water at Possum Point

The Possum Point Power Station opened in 1948 as a coal-burning facility, generating electricity for the region.

Coal, when burnt, leaves behind coal ash — a fine powdery, toxic substance. That ash was placed in five ash ponds surrounding the power plant.

Dominion Virginia Power owns and operates Possum Point Power Stations on the banks of the Potomac River outside Dumfries, but it hasn’t burnt coal since 2003. It now uses natural gas and oil to generate electricity.

The plant is in the process of capping those ash ponds. Water from a final pond will treated and drained into the Quantico Creek and then will flow into the Potomac River. Only two of the five coal ash ponds remain — three have been dry since the 1960s.

A 2013 permit allowed Dominion to dig up coal ash from the three old dry ponds and move it to the largest of the five ponds on the site, D-Pond. Some coal ash from E Pond was also moved to D-Pond, as allowed by the permit.

The coal ash movement took place between June and Octobert of this year. Now, Dominion wants to treat the water in D-Pond, scrub it of deadly toxins contained in the ash, and release the water into Quantico Creek where it will flow into the Potomac River.

The utility behemoth will need a permit to do so, and Virginia’s Department of Environmental Quality is now taking public comments about Dominion’s request to treat the ash water and eventually flow it — about 2.53 million gallons of water per day — into the river. If approved, DEQ will add an amendment to Dominion’s 2013 permit that allows it to move the coal ash.

If all goes to plan, water in the ponds will be treated and drained, and the ponds “capped” and closed, and filled with dirt.

“Once the final permit conditions are finalized, a waste water treatment system will be selected. The discharge will be routed through the treatment system prior to discharge. DEQ will develop limits for specific constituents that are associated with discharges. These limits are developed using conservative EPA and DEQ procedures that will ensure that the receiving stream and human health are protected. Monitoring of the discharges will occur to ensure that these limits are met,” said Dominion spokesman Dan Genest.

Virginia’s Water Control Board will meet Jan. 14, 2016 to decide whether or not to allow Dominion to drain the water. The change would amend a permit issued in 2013 that allowed Dominion to consolidate ash from all five ponds into one, and then drain treated water from the final pond into the Potomac River.

Written public comments are being accepted by Virginia DEQ until December 14. A public hearing at the DEQ Northern Virginia Regional Office, located at 13901 Crown Court in Woodbridge, will be held at 6 p.m. December 8.

How the coal ash is being moved

Coal ash is grey and dark. It turns to sludge when placed into a ash pond, said Bryant Thomas, with the Virginia DEQ Northern Virginia Regional Office.

There are five ponds at the Possum Point site. All of them are identified by letter: A, B, C, D, and E.

Ponds A, B, and C haven’t been used since the mid-1960s. Coal ash was buried in the ponds, and then dirt was used to cover, or cap the ponds. Trees and bushes now grow on the land, and power lines were strung overhead.

Between June and mid-October, crews at Possum Point have been digging up dirt and coal ash from ponds A through C and moving the ash into Pond D — the largest of two remaining ash ponds at the site. Some ash from Pond E — located next to Pond D, and easily seen from Possum Point Road — is being moved into Pond D.

A 2013 permit allows Dominion to consolidate the coal ash into one pond. The ash is toxic, and chemicals contained in the ash have been linked to causing cancer, neurological disease, respiratory illness, and organ disease. 

Treating the water

Waters from ponds D and E is largely contained by earthen berms. Some water from the ponds drains into Quantico Creek from two small toe drains or outfalls.

The water and sediment from around the toe drains are consistently monitored by DEQ, said Thomas. The sediment in the water contains elevated levels of copper, nickel, and zinc. However, elevated levels of those elements are not detected in the water.

“A domino effect is possible, where the detected elements in sediment could affect the water column, but we’re just not seeing that,” said Thomas.

Dominion says it has the experience to do the job correctly.

“We have benchmarked with other companies that are closing ash ponds and are applying best practices. Firms to complete the work were evaluated and a firm selected based on experience and performance in conducting similar work. We have project oversight to ensure the project is completed in compliance, focusing on safety and according to the design,” said Genest.

DEQ is now taking public comments on defines appropriate levels of metals are allowed in the waters of Quantico Creek and the Potomac River near Possum Point. DEQ would require Dominion to test regularly the waters for as long as it deems necessary, and then report their findings to the state.

Such self-reporting requirements are common in cases like these as Dominion could rack up several penalties that could lead to major fines if incorrect information on water contaminants is given to state authorities, said Thomas.

A large “Brita like” filter would be used to treat the water that would eventually flow into the creek.

“It could take months to drain,” added Thomas.

News
Coats for Syrian and Iraqi refugees collected at Dumfries Town Hall

You can drop off of a coat to Dumfries to help refugees from Syria and Iraq. 

Here’s more in a press release from Dumfries Mayor Jerry Foreman: 

Northern Virginia elected officials, religious groups and aid organizations have partnered for a blanket and coat drive aimed at assisting Syrian and Iraqi refugees in Turkey.

Coordinated through the Northern Virginia Regional Commission, the drive accepts new or lightly-used blankets & coats as well as monetary donations that can be dropped off at Dumfries Town Hall until December 4.

Stop by Dumfries Town Hall and drop off your blanket(s). Staff will put it in the Mayor’s office. Last year we collected over 200 blankets.

Turkey is home to more than four million refugees who have fled from Syria and Iraq to escape war and violence caused by ISIL.

3 ways to give local, taste local at Manassas Olive Oil Company this holiday season

Manassas Olive Oil wants you to give and taste local this year.

The shop in Historic Downtown Manassas has three unique gift items that are perfect for family, friends, and clients.

The first unique gift we offer are variety packs. They come with three paired olive oils and balsamic vinegars” said Cameron Thomson, manager at Manassas Olive Oil Company. “These are a great way to introduce people to good olive oil and balsamic vinegar. It gives you a nice variety of flavors as well as some of our more popular items.”

Because Manassas Olive Oil Company has so many options to choose from, they’re also a perfect gift for guests who are a little unsure of what to get their loved ones.

Manassas Olive Oil Company offers two variety packs: their Italian Collection and Manassas Collection. Included in the Italian Collection are Traditional Balsamic Vinegar, Sicilian Lemon Balsamic Vinegar, Fig Balsamic Vinegar, Garlic Infused Olive Oil, Basil Infused Olive Oil, and Tuscan Herb Infused Olive Oil.

In the Manassas Collection contains the Thomson family’s favorites and includes Traditional Balsamic Vinegar, Cranberry Pear Balsamic Vinegar, Raspberry Balsamic Vinegar, Leccino Extra Virgin Olive Oil, Blood Orange Fused Olive Oil, and Tuscan Herb Infused Olive Oil.

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Variety packs are also customizable per your personal preference. Each box is also uniquely packaged in a beautiful box, which are durable and hold up great during shipping. Variety packs are available for just $36.95.

Gift baskets at Manassas Olive Oil come in two different sizes. The largest pre-made gift basket comes with four bottles, two spouts, a dipping dish, and a sea salt.

It includes Traditional Balsamic Vinegar, Tuscan Herb Infused Olive Oil, Garlic Infused Olive Oil, and Fig Balsamic Vinegar. The smaller gift basket comes with two bottles, two pour spouts, and a dipping dish.

”Gift baskets are a great way to introduce people to olive oils balsamic vinegars because they feature our best-selling products, so they are definitely something people will love and use, said Thomson. .

You can also purchase gift baskets with different themes, such as winter, solid colors, and more colorful ones. These gift baskets are perfect for the holidays but are also a great gift all year round.

If you’re a business owner or a sales agent, gift baskets are great gifts to give to loyal clients.

Cameron said, “Since it’s the time of the year for rewarding clients, right now we have an order for several gift baskets from a company, so it’s proved to be another nice way to say thank you to anyone.”

The large gift baskets retail for $96 and the smaller gift baskets for $56. Manassas Olive Oil Company will customize gift baskets to suit your needs.

Customers can request to have products added, removed, or substituted in order to create something personal. They can even customize the type of basket and bows, And if the customer is wants a basket, but is unsure of what to add, the knowledgeable staff at Manassas Olive Oil will help.

“The third gift option is buying our products off-the-shelf,” said Cameron. “When purchasing, we wrap the bottles in colorful paper, but if our guest would like a different presentation, we carry a variety of one and two bottle gift bags in different themes.”

Manassas Olive Oil receives its bags from a company that specializes in wine packaging, so they are a better fit for the bottles that it carries.

“Olive oil and balsamic vinegar are gourmet products, which make wonderful gifts. Everyone loves to eat, so surprise your host, friends, and family with the gift of taste,” stated Thomson.

News
Steve Angrisano to perform free concert at St. Francis of Assisi Catholic Church in Triangle

Popular Catholic singer-songwriter and speaker, Steve Angrisano, will lead a three-part Advent reflection series at St. Francis of Assisi Catholic Church, Triangle, Va., over three consecutive nights: Sunday, December 13; Monday, December 14; and Tuesday, December 15. Start time for all three events is 7 p.m.

The concert/parish mission is open to the public and there is no admission charge. A freewill offering will be taken to help cover expenses. The parish is located at 18825 Fuller Heights Road, Triangle, Va.

“For the past year, we’ve rededicated ourselves to growing in the faith and putting that faith into action,” said Fr. Kevin Downey, O.F.M., pastor of St. Francis of Assisi Catholic Church. “We’ve asked Steve to be with us, because we don’t want this Christmas season to go by as just any other time. Our hope is that this year it’ll be healing, life-changing and a call to action for everyone.”

Each night, Angrisano will combine music with a different reflection. Themes will include “encountering God in your life and evangelization,” “responding to the call and living the faith,” and “missionary discipleship and making a difference.”

News
Police Chief: ‘We appear to have failed to notify ICE’

Two investigations centering on how police work with federal immigration and customs officials are ongoing in Prince William County.

One is a public probe ordered Saturday by the Board of County Supervisors to learn if county police are talking to federal immigration and customs officials, or ICE when officers come across anyone has criminal, or civil administrative — also called a deportation order — against them.

The second is an internal investigation ordered by Prince William County Police Chief Stephan Hudson, who wants to know why some officers declined to properly notify ICE in about half of the cases involving illegal immigrants with a civil or administrative warrant for their arrest.

A WJLA story labeling Prince William as one of four “sanctuary cities” in the Washington, D.C. region for illegal immigrants prompted a swift reaction from At-large Board of Supervisors Chairman Corey Stewart. The Chairman in 2007 made national headlines when he pushed for some of the strictest measures in the nation when leading the Board to pass an ordinance that would require all county police officers to check the legal presence of anyone stopped or arrested.

In an email obtained by Potomac Local, Chief Hudson told county officials that only about half of the cases involving illegal immigrants were handled properly.

“I have some additional info I can share, but am still working to verify some facts with ICE. Basically, our officers appear to have made phone contact with ICE’s screening center in about half the cases when we got these hits. We appear to have failed to notify ICE in the remaining cases… I will conduct a formal internal investigation into this matter to determine how this apparent failure to notify (in at least some of the cases) has occurred, but that will take time.

-Prince William County Police Chief Stephan Hudson

Officers check the ID of anyone stopped by for a suspected offense. Information on that person is returned to them on a computer. And, if the person has a criminal warrant out of their arrest, police place the suspect in handcuffs.

If the suspect has a civil or administrative warrant against them, police do not have the authority to arrest that person, explained Stewart. Officials now want to know how many times Prince William officers have come encountered individuals with such warrants and did not notifiy ICE.

The Prince William County Police Department’s authority to check the legal status of immigrants ended in 2012 when the 287g program — a joint program with the feds that trained officers on how to check the legal status of those arrested went away. Officers at the county jail are still trained in checking the legal status of those arrested, and still do so today.

“We certainly disagree with Channel 7’s labeling of Prince William County as a “sanctuary county.” Law enforcement officials in Prince William County have a well-established history of cooperating with ICE. In all criminal custodial arrests, PWCPD officers inquire into the immigration status of the arrestee and document the response on arrest paperwork.

100% of all arrestees booked into the Prince William/Manassas Regional Adult Detention Center (Jail) are screened through the 287g program, and the Jail notifies ICE of those findings.

Furthermore, In the event our officers find a person to have a criminal “Previously Deported Felon” warrant from ICE, officers arrest that person and follow the same procedure at the jail.”

–Prince William police spokesman Jonathan Perok

Interacting with those who have administrative warrants is only a “small portion” of the department’s dealings with ICE, but that was the core focus of the WJLA story, added Perok.

The Board of Supervisors was beginning its search for a new police chief at the same time the police department’s 287g authority was coming to an end. Hudson was appointed Chief of Police in February 2013 after Charlie T. Deane, the department’s first second Chief of Police retired. It’s possible that someone could have dropped the ball during this changeover period, and at least some directives weren’t followed, said Stewart.

“There’s a lot that we don’t know yet, and we’re going to have to wait for the results of our audit,” added Stewart.

The county tasked private firm RSM with conducting the audit. The results could come before the end of the month.

Come for the Manassas Christmas parade, stay for lunch and learn why historic Santa wears red, white, and blue

On Saturday, December 5, Manassas will host its annual Christmas Parade in Downtown.

Why not make a day of it and come have lunch with Santa Claus at the Old Manassas Courthouse located at 9248 Lee Avenue in Manassas, at the corner of Lee and Grant avenues. He’ll be once again dusting off that old patriotic suit of red, white, and blue for his visit.

The suit, which resembles our nation’s flag was created by famed German Born cartoonist Thomas Nast and first appeared in Harper’s Weekly on January 3, 1863 and was used as a recruiting piece for the northern war effort during the Civil War.

Santa was illustrated giving Christmas gifts to soldiers outside Fredericksburg, and was meant to soften the blow suffered by the Federal Army under General Ambrose Burnside earlier in December of 1862.

The menu will consist of oven roasted turkey, honey baked ham, home-style mashed potatoes, baked macaroni and cheese, freshly cut bacon herbed green beans, fresh cranberry sauce, giant cookies, and freshly baked pumpkin pie.

Beverages will include spiced apple cider, freshly brewed coffee, and hot chocolate. After lunch, bring your camera for a picture with Santa and an opportunity to discuss your Christmas list with him.

Then make an authentic 19th Century Christmas decoration to take home. Participants are encouraged to bring a new, unwrapped toy to donate to Toys for Tots.

The cost is $20 per person ages 11 and up, and $10 for children 10 and younger. Lunch will begin at 12:30 p.m. in the Upstairs Ball Room.

Elevator access is available to those who need it. For more information or to make a reservation please contact the Prince William County Historic Preservation Division at (703) 792-4754.

European Wax Center in Manassas makes guests look and feel beautiful

European Wax Center in Manassas

European Wax Center opened in June at Bull Run Plaza in Manassas.

Ron Whidby, the franchise owner of the location, said European Wax Center in Manassas offers its guests a unique experience that stands out from the competition, and they strive to make guests look and feel beautiful.

“We provide an upbeat, friendly atmosphere. Our guests enjoy a personalized experience from the time they enter our doors. Our guest service coordinators greet you as soon as you arrive. We offer a private room with your licensed professional, whom we call Wax Specialists or Skin Care Specialists,” said Whidby.european-wax-center-3

European Wax Center in Manassas uses its own exclusive wax, called Comfort Wax that is shipped from Paris. The wax is applied at a lukewarm temperature, and there are no strips needed to remove the wax because it is a hard wax, meaning the wax hardens and is removed without strips, quickly and effortlessly. It’s ideal for sensitive skin and is unlike the traditional soft wax, which can cause irritations to the skin. Other places may use a hard wax like European Wax Center, but Whidby says that it’s not the same.

“A lot of the Wax Specialists can’t believe how well our wax works compared to other hard waxes they’ve used in the past,” said Whidby. The high-quality of the wax and materials used at European Wax Center is enough for guests to make return visits. Men and women, from a variety of ages, often visit the center.

“For women, the number one service is the bikini wax,” Whidby said. “Men typically get a back or shoulder wax.”

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Unlike other spas, European Wax Center in Manassas only provides waxing services. “Our Wax Specialists focus on waxing all day long so they master the techniques needed to complete a service effectively and efficiently.  We are the experts in waxing, because that is all that we do. Most services are scheduled for 15 minutes, which allows many guests to come in for their waxing on a lunch break. They are in and out before their breaks are over,” said Whidby.

What else keeps guests coming back? It’s the luxury feel and setting of European Wax Center.

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“When they walk past the glass door and into their wax suite, it’s a setting unlike anything else,” said Whidby. Guests are greeted by their Wax Specialist who will guide them back to their wax suite. Along the way guests see beautiful brick archways as soon as they enter the hallway.

“It’s eye-catching and that’s when we get that ‘wow,'” said Whidby.

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All of the Wax Specialists who work with European Wax Center in Manassas are state licensed and have graduated from esthetic or cosmetology schools. They are also required to complete an in-house training that ensures each Wax Specialist is providing the same level of excellent service to guests.

“We do more than just wax or remove unwanted hair; we reveal the natural, beautiful skin that remains. We educate our guests on proper skin care before and after their waxing,” said Whidby.

The Wax Specialists educate guests about how to hydrate their skin to prevent drying, and which products from European Wax Center’s exclusive product line they can able use so they can have better results as they continue to wax.

As part of the overall service, Wax Specialists educate guests on their exclusive four-step process, which prepares the skin before and after service, to make the waxing experience as comfortable as possible.

European Wax Center believes in the services provided, that a free service is offered to all new guests. “As long as you are a Virginia resident, we give a complimentary wax to first-time guests of European Wax Center,” said Whidby.

“We want our guests to try the products and services we have to offer. Women can get a complimentary eyebrow, underarm, or bikini line wax, or can upgrade to a Brazilian bikini wax for half-off the regular price. Men can get a free eyebrow, ear, or nose wax for their first visit.”

Packages are also offered to discount the price of services.

“For some services we have our unlimited wax pass where you can come in as often as you’d like for one year for that service,” said Whidby.  These passes are only available for the eyebrow, underarm, and bikini waxes.

The pre-paid wax pass allows guests to buy nine of the same service, and get three free where guests can save up to twenty-five percent off of their services. These passes are available for all of the services offered and the visits never expire, so guests have the flexibility to use their visits according to their own schedule.

“So for our regular guests that know they’re coming frequently, there are ways for them to save instead of paying full price every time,” said Whidby.

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