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Prince William, Manassas police plan VIN Etching Event

Good morning Prince William – you don’t want to miss the 3rd Annual Cajun Occasion Crawfish Boil on Saturday, June 10th, noon- 4 pm on the Manassas Museum Lawn. This fun event includes all you can eat Louisiana Buffet, live music featuring Kitty and the Fat Cats and beer and wine garden with Louisiana beers available on tap. Bring your blankets, chairs, pop-up tents and set up on the lawn. Proceeds from the beer and wine garden benefit the Un Trim A Tree Holiday Gift program for over 5,000 needy kids in our community. Tickets can be purchased at www.cajunoccasion.net.

· Habitat for Humanity has plenty of work to do to get their new Woodbridge ReStore ready to open. Please visit www.habitatpwc.org and schedule yourself on their Volunteer Calendar – slots are open for more volunteers June 1 through June 3! Lunch donations for volunteers on this project would also be appreciated. If you have an interest in home ownership or are in need of home repairs, applications are available on their website.

· House of Mercy is collecting new packages of underwear, briefs, undershirts, socks and bras in any size, age, gender or color on Thursday, June 8th. Just drive through the parking lot at 8170 Flannery Court anytime 10am-5pm to help families with the basics! This event is called U is for Undies- super cute! (more…)

Alarm company names Manassas Park Named 6th safest in Virginia

A home security company says two cities in Prince William County, and one town are some of the safest in Virginia. 

Nearest the top of the list at number 6 is Manassas Park.

From Alarms.org: 

“An independent city in Prince William County, Manassas Park is home to 15,625 residents.  Located approximately 30 miles southwest of Washington D.C., the community has a small town feel with all the amenities of a big city.  It is primarily residential and known for its rich history and well-performing schools.  Manassas Park receives high marks for keeping safety a top priority and has been recognized as one of the Safest Cities in Virginia.”

Also on the list at number 9 is Dumfries and the city of Manassas at 16.

‘…the accused locked the vehicle doors and would not let the victims out until their mother arrived’

From Prince William police: 

“Abduction – On May 24 at 7:05PM, officers responded to investigate a possible past abduction which occurred at Patriot High School located at 10504 Kettle Run Rd in Nokesville (20181) on May 4 around 4:30PM. The investigation revealed that on May 4, the victims, a 16-year-old female juvenile and 14-year-old female juvenile, were waiting to be picked up from the school by their mother when they were approached by a vehicle being driven by the accused, an acquaintance. During the encounter, the accused told the victims that she had been requested by their mother to pick them up so the victims got into the vehicle. At some point, the accused locked the vehicle doors and would not let the victims out until their mother arrived. When their mother arrived approximately an hour later, the accused let the victims go and the parties eventually separated. The victims and their mother responded to the Western District station on May 24 to report the incident. Further investigation determined that the mother and the accused were involved in an ongoing verbal dispute. No injuries were reported. Following the investigation, the accused was arrested without incident.

Arrested on May 24:

Aleasha Rashea MILLER, 41, of 13601 Chapeltown Mews in Bristow

Charged with 2 counts of abduction

Court Date: Pending | Bond: Held WITHOUT bond”

Dogs owner accused of dumping bodies on walking path

From Prince William police: 

Felony Animal Cruelty *ARREST – On the morning of May 25, Animal Control officers received a tip regarding the ongoing possible animal cruelty investigation in the area of Cherry Hill Rd in Dumfries after two American pit bull terriers were discovered deceased along a walking path in the area on May 21. Further investigation by Animal Control officers and detectives revealed that the owner of the dogs, later identified as the accused, left the two pit bulls inside of a storage unit on the porch of his apartment without water, climate control or proper ventilation on May 19 around 10:00AM. When another resident of the apartment returned home approximately seven hours later, the dogs were located deceased. The accused then disposed of the remains in a wooded area near the 1500 block of Cherry Hill Rd. Following the investigation, the accused responded to the Gar-Field Station in Woodbridge where he was arrested without incident later that evening.

Arrested on May 25:

Kevin Matthew BLEDSOE, 27, of 2951 Fox Lair Dr, Apt 304, in Woodbridge (more…)

Water outage planned in Haymarket

From the Prince William Service Authority: 

“The Service Authority will be performing work on a water main overnight on May 30 in the area of the Haymarket Village Center. The work will affect the entire shopping center as well as the Sheetz gas station across the street.

However, since the work is being done at night, only the businesses that stay open 24 hours a day should be majorly impacted. Limited on-site water service to Wal-Mart will be provided by the Service Authority.”

Excursion train ride tickets for the Manassas Heritage Railway Festival are selling fast. Get yours today.

The Heritage Railway Festival is back in Manassas for its 23rd year! Enjoy the rich railroad history of Manassas Saturday, June 3rd from 10 a.m. – 3 p.m. surrounding the Train Depot.

A day full of family-friendly fun, the Heritage Railway Festival will feature a community stage on West Street hosting the Bull Run Cloggers, Wildlife Ambassadors, Premier Martial Arts, and the Suburban Gypsies Belly Dance Club.

Take an excursion train ride to Clifton and back at 10 a.m., 11 a.m., noon, and 1 p.m. The morning trains at 10 a.m. and 11 a.m. will feature character Chase from the popular cartoon Paw Patrol and the afternoon train rides at noon and 1 p.m. will feature Princess Belle. The 10 a.m. train ride has already sold out but remaining trains have tickets available for purchase online or in person at the Train Depot with ticket prices ranging from $5-$6.

After your train excursion, walk over to the Harris Pavilion and view the model train displays or walk along West Street, Prince William Street, and Battle Street to enjoy delicious food vendors, shop novelty railway crafters, and more!

The Museum Lawn will also be featuring the Greater Manassas Women’s Club canned sculpture challenge “ExtravaCANza” where organizations will be creating sculptures made entirely out of canned goods to resemble a train theme. Stop by and watch the progress as these canned goods become sculptures.

Whether you love trains and railroads or are just looking for some family fun, this event is a great way to spend your Saturday and see all that Historic Downtown Manassas has to offer. For more information on this and other events in the City of Manassas, go to www.visitmanassas.org.

National Museum of the Marine Corps welcomes 5 millionth visitor

First on Potomac Local

From the National Museum of the Marine Corps: 

“The National Museum of the Marine Corps recently welcomed its 5 millionth visitor when Carol Ellison of Stafford, Va. crossed the threshold. The Museum, considered one of the top museums in the state, hosts an average of 1,500 visitors a day.

Ellison’s visit was on a relatively slow day when only five large tour groups visited but it was a great day for her. She and her husband, a retired Marine Corps master sergeant, were given a gift certificate to the Museum Store, a brick in Semper Fidelis Memorial Park and a behind- the-scenes tour of the Museum’s Final Phase. (more…)

Construction set to begin on Northern Virginia veterans care center

Northern Virginia veterans will soon have a new place to recover and retire.

A new Puller Veterans Care Center will be built on a 30-acre site at Vint Hill Road and Vint Hill Parkway in Fauquier County, just across the Prince William County line.

The one and a half story veterans center will house 128 veterans and will serve as a place to care for inpatient care for veterans going through medical rehabilitation and for those who have Alzheimer’s.

The duration of stays for veterans at the facility and those who are admitted will be based on the medical needs of the patient. Veterans needing memory care could conceivably spend the rest of their lives at the center.

The veterans care center is named after the Puller family which includes Marine Lt. Gen. Lewis B. “Chesty” Puller who fought in World War II, his son and Pulitzer Prize-winning author Lt. Lewis Burwell Puller Jr., who served in Vietnam, and the recently retired former Virginia State Senator Toddy Puller, the ex-wife of Puller, Jr.

Construction on the center is expected to begin late this year, and an opening date for the facility is slated for late 2019. (more…)

Comics, sci-fi, and beer. A one of a kind brewery in Prince William.


Prince William Beer Trail

Editors note: This is the first in a series of posts showcasing breweries in Prince William County, Virginia.

Born over brunch in 2013, Heroic Aleworks finally set up shop in Woodbridge in January. But, make no mistake, this isn’t your ordinary brewery.

The theme of the brewery infuses specific passions of the owners: comics, sci-fi, and beer. The brewery initially drifted toward a local Virginian theme, but before a research trip to the Craft Brewers Conference in Denver, Colo., the owners decided on the comic based brewery.

Visitors who come out can enjoy a good drink, a good comic, and experience the ambiance of a seemingly untapped market. The website features comics since each beer has an associated character developed in conjunction with the brew recipe. The artwork is also developed by local and internationally known comic artists.

Besides the comic theme, the brewery also takes pride in their taproom, which is described “an amazing place to hang out and play one of our many board games, our free classic arcade, and get together with friends for a role playing game such as “D&D” or any other activity.”

Keep an eye out for the Minde Trappe Belgian Style Dubbel, their most ordered brew. “With its slight sweetness, higher ABV, and amazing flavor profile provided in part by our house-made candy sugar, it’s definitely a crowd pleaser.”

Heroic Aleworks has also incorporated a series of fun activities coming soon. Geeks Who Drink Trivia on Wednesday nights, and it joins other themed nights and new beer releases. Don’t forget to check out their new Mug Club will be capped at 100 members.

Investigation continues for robbery of Gainesville bank

From Prince William County police:

Bank Robbery – On May 23 around 3:45PM, officers responded to the Wells Fargo Bank located at 7591 Somerset Crossing Dr in Gainesville to investigate a robbery. An employee reported to police that an unknown man approached the bank area then passed a note demanding money. The suspect took an undisclosed amount of money before fleeing the area on foot. No weapon was displayed and no injuries were reported. A police K-9 and helicopter were used to search for the suspect who was not located. The investigation continues.

Neighborhood library celebrates 30th anniversary with naming of pavillion

From Prince William County:

The Prince William County Public Library System recently held an event to celebrate the Independent Hill Neighborhood Library’s 30th anniversary, as well as the naming of a pavilion.

Coles District Supervisor Marty Nohe spoke at the event. “This library is a gathering place… [it] is truly a pivotal and integral part of the Independent Hill community. The staff here has done a great job in making sure that the resources that are available in this building are the resources that best fit the community around it.”

Heather Parisi has been bringing her son, Owen, to the library since he was a young child and said he has made friends with the staff over the years. Parisi said Owen was thrilled with the library from the start. “The first time I brought him, he thought that I was kidding that he could get whatever he wanted and check it out.” (more…)

I-95 E-ZPass Express Lanes operators brace for holiday traffic

From an email: 

Good morning.  We wanted to pass along information regarding 95 Express Lanes Memorial Day weekend travel.  

Drivers are advised to prepare for increased demand on the 95 Express Lanes later this week as many in the region depart for vacation.  In addition, the northbound 95 Express Lanes and I-395 HOV lanes will close weekdays at 10 a.m. for the morning reversal beginning Thursday, May 25.  The early closure will enable southbound travelers to enter the 95 Express Lanes around 11:30 a.m., one hour earlier than the current schedule.  Overnight weekday reversals will continue to take place from about midnight to 2 a.m.  The schedule will remain in place throughout the summer.

To avoid higher-than-average tolls and peak traffic, drivers should depart before noon on Thursday or after 6 p.m. on Friday. 

Beginning the afternoon of Thursday, May 25, through the evening of Friday, May 26, drivers traveling along the 95 Express Lanes corridor should expect heavy traffic volumes and increased demand requiring higher-than-average toll prices to best manage the traffic on the Lanes. (more…)

Heavy rain, minor flooding possible Wednesday night

From the National Weather Service: 

“Most of the daytime hours of Wednesday will be dry as the coastal low moves away and the wedged high pressure continues to exert influence. A few showers or drizzle may develop in the Allegheny Highlands. It will be cloudy across the entire area with temperatures in the upper 60s to lower 70s.

Meanwhile, a dynamic low-pressure system will be winding up over the Ohio Valley. Strong low-level jet/moisture transport will overspread the area Wednesday night, resulting in a widespread moderate to perhaps locally heavy rainfall…here may be a few embedded rumbles of thunder\ as well.

If any areas in the mountains overperform on rainfall tonight, it could set the stage for minor flooding concerns but will have to let the preceding events play out first. Otherwise, the system is progressive as the dry slot works northward Thursday morning, with amounts from this wave ranging from 0.5 to 1.5 inches.”


Hard hat and orange vest: Bandit dressed as construction worker robs Wells Fargo Bank in Gainesville

From Prince William police: 

Bank Robbery– On May 23 around 3:45PM, officers responded to the Wells Fargo Bank located at 7591 Somerset Crossing Dr in Gainesville (20155) to investigate a robbery. An employee reported to police that an unknown man approached the bank area then passed a note demanding money.

The suspect took an undisclosed amount of money before fleeing the area on foot. No weapon was displayed and no injuries were reported. A police K-9 and helicopter are currently checking the surrounding area for the suspect. Heavy police presence can be expected in the area. More information will be released when available.

The investigation continues.

Lookout: Hispanic male, between 30-40 years of age, 5’09”-5’10”, 160lbs with a thin build. He was last seen wearing an orange construction vest, yellow hard hat, a dark hoodie, dark blue pants, blue gloves, and clear goggles.

Here’s why Manassas Park resident Vivian Ward had a Mother’s Day she’ll never forget

Did you hear about the Mother’s Day Makeover and Contest sponsored by the City of Manassas Park Department of Parks and Recreation?

This really is one of the most amazing programs held at the Manassas Park Community Center (MPCC). If you have not heard about the FREE Mother’s Day Makeover and Contest, let me take a moment to tell you all the details.

First, you need to write a short paragraph about what your mother means to you and your family and enter it into the contest. Contest entries were accepted online or at the Community Center throughout the month of April. After going through all the entries, the MPCC staff chose a winner!

“Each person who entered our contest had a compelling reason and we truly appreciated that as we read each entry and decided the winner,” explained Jason Shriner, Marketing Manager, “Our contest winner received generous gifts and services from local business owners who donated their time or their products to help make the winning mother truly feel special.”

“I am so proud to share all the participating vendors including Yellow Cab of Prince William who provided sedan service for the makeover winner, hair styling by Jaisyn Markley at PR at Partners, expert make-up by Niki Kalfamanolis at PR at Partners, a manicure and pedicure from Pretty Nails in Manassas Park, and a clothing item of her choice from DeeDee of LulaRoe,” said Shriner.

In addition, the winning mother received a balloon sculpture from Nani’s etc., flowers by Montejo’s Florist, digital photos from Carol Fleurette Photography, a catered meal from Heart 2 Heart Catering, a gift basket and Paparazzi Jewelry from Lisa Briones, and three free months of membership toward an annual membership at the Manassas Park Community Center.

This year’s Mother’s Day Makeover Contest winner was Manassas Park resident Vivian Ward. Her daughter Myra Ward Lilly submitted her for the contest.

“Each week, I get the Weekl-e which highlights events at the Community Center on my phone. I saw the contest, clicked on it, wrote my feelings, and clicked to enter,” Lilly said, “It was so easy to enter, and I can’t believe how much we won.”

“I never imagined I would win something like this, and here I am!” exclaimed Ward as she showed off her new manicure. “I never wear make-up, but I love what they did for me, and do not get me started about my hair! That young man is a magician and he made my hair look beyond amazing,” Ward giggled as she patted her hair.

“I can’t put into words how special I feel,” said Ward, “I never expected so much, but that sedan just kept taking us from place to place, and all I had to do was to get up early, and get myself over to the Community Center. I was so nervous because I didn’t know what to expect, but the day was just beautiful.”

After Ward and her family returned to the Community Center, there was a big reveal. The winning family ate a gourmet lunch of grilled salmon, sesame noodles, and a vegetable medley catered by Heart 2 Heart Catering.

In addition, Safari Bingo and Sweet Pickle the Ballonatic Clown made giant bubbles and created balloon figures. Everyone had their faces painted by Elaine Jenkins of Dabbledy Doo, enjoyed free cookies and hot tea while making free Mother’s Day cards and photo frames for the photos taken at the photo booth!

Dimitris Ward, grandson of the Mother’s Day Makeover winner, enjoyed watching his family participate in all the events.

“Everyone has been so nice and treated my grandmother with such kindness. We can never thank you all enough for what you did today,” he exclaimed.

“I am still taking it all in. My family and I are thrilled and will always remember what happened here today,” Ward said.

Look for this contest again in April 2018 and enter your mother! Entering the contest is easy. You may even get the chance to make your mother feel as special as Mrs. Ward and her family felt this year!

The Manassas Park Community Center is located at 99 Adams Street in Manassas Park, VA. Managed by the City of Manassas Park Department of Parks and Recreation, the facility is home to basketball courts, a swimming pool, wellness areas, and 29 special events and programs–many of which are FREE! For more information visit us at www.ManassasParkCommunityCenter.com or call at 703-335-8872.

Manassas police officer-involved shooting ‘justified,’ BB gun found

The investigation into the shooting of an 18-year-old man by a Manassas police officer is over. 

From a Prince William County police press release: 

“Upon reviewing the details of the shooting investigation involving the two Manassas City police officers, Prince William County Commonwealth’s Attorney, Paul Ebert, ruled the shooting was justified. Commonwealth Attorney Paul Ebert stated, “In my opinion, the officers involved were in reasonable fear of death or serious harm when they used lethal force and therefore their actions were justified.”

A Manassas City police officer pursued a car driven by 18-year-old Luis Daniel Torres Molina, of Woodbridge, from the city to George Helwig Memorial Park just off Route 234 and shot him early Friday. A 911 caller told Manassas police they heard shots fired, and then described seeing a black Ford Explorer with tinted windows.  (more…)

Knife, machete used in gang chase, police said

From Prince William police: 

Merino Argueta

“Attempted Aggravated Malicious Wounding On May 21 at 9:00PM, officers responded to the 13600 block of Charles Ct in Woodbridge (22191) to investigate subjects fighting in the area. Officers located two victims, a 20-year-old man and an 18-year-old man both of Woodbridge, who reported to police that they were in the area above when they were confronted by two individuals. During the encounter, the suspects brandished a knife and a machete then chased after the victims. The parties eventually separated and the suspects fled the area prior to officers arriving. No injuries were reported. Upon further investigation, officers determined that this incident was gang related. Later that evening, officers identified the suspects and detained them without incident at their residence. Following the investigation, both of the suspects were arrested.

Arrested on May 22:

Kevin Orlando MERINO ARGUETA, 19, of 13308 Alison St in Woodbridge

Bryan Wilfredo RIOS-GONZALEZ, 18, of 13308 Alison St in Woodbridge


Both were charged with attempted aggravated malicious wounding, gang participation, and brandishing a bladed weapon

Court Date: June 15, 2017 | Bond: Both were held WITHOUT bond”

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