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Holiday Inn Express North Stafford part of growing ‘select service’ hotel catering to business travelers

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It’s been about a month since the Wingate Inn in North Stafford changed its name to Holiday Inn Express, and there’s already been a noticeable improvement.

The rooms are completely renovated, and the pool went from a chlorine-filled swimming hole to a salt water oasis, and the continental breakfast is now anything but bland.

The changes are part of an $6 million renovation project at the hotel located the heart of North Staford, across from Stafford Marketplace. Changing the brand of the hotel was a significant move to attract and cater to business travelers.

“If we’re going to do a full renovation we’re going to go for a higher brand,” said Amal Lambaraa, Managing Director of Lambaraa Hospitality LLC at the Holiday Inn Express in North Stafford.

The new name not only means fresh linens and a brighter coat of paint. It means a better, healthier complimentary breakfast with low-calorie pancakes, waffles, and grab-and-go healthy options like fruit and gourmet coffee.

“Some days, the breakfast you take away can also be your lunch. You can take your food with you, and that prevents you from needing to run out to a gas station to get food or coffee,” added Lambarra.

There is over $1 billion in new hotel construction happening across Virginia right now. Leading the pack are these types of “select service” hotels. (more…)

News
Mental health counselor charged with contributing to the delinquency of a minor

From Prince William County Police Department:

Contributing to the Delinquency of a Minor – On March 6, detectives from the Special Victims Unit began an investigation involving a juvenile and a counselor at the Psychological and Life Skills Associates located at 13885 Hedgewood Dr, Suite 245, in Woodbridge .

The investigation revealed that between January and March of 2017, the accused, identified as Matthew Stuart BROUDY, had an inappropriate relationship with a client, identified as a 17-year-old female juvenile. During the course of their relationship, the accused engaged in inappropriate contact with the victim on more than one occasion while at his above office in Woodbridge.

Detectives further learned that the accused continued to send the victim sexually explicit messages. On March 16, detectives executed a search warrant at BROUDY’s office and seized electronic items. Following the investigation, the accused was arrested.

Arrested on March 16:
Matthew Stuart BROUDY, 46, of 5711 4th St N. in Arlington
Charged with contributing to the delinquency of a minor and using a communication system to facilitate certain offenses involving children
Court Date: Pending | Bond: Held WITHOUT Bond

News
Chimney fire scorches three-story townhouse in Woodbridge

From Prince William County Department of Fire and Rescue:

On Wednesday, March 15th at 8:55 p.m., fire and rescue units were dispatched to a townhouse fire located in the 3400 block of Braddock Road in Woodbridge.

Upon arrival, firefighters encountered heavy fire in the basement that had extended to the second and third floor of the home. Firefighters initiated fire attack and extinguished the fire.

No injuries reported. According to the Fire Marshal’s Office, preliminary damages are estimated at $200,000, a total loss.

The Building Official has posted the home unsafe.Red Cross was on scene to assist, 2 adults and 2 children, displaced by the fire.

The fire originated in the chimney and has been determined as accidental.

Prince William County Department of Fire and Rescue Chief Kevin McGee would like to urge residents to follow these fire and life-safety tips when using wood burning equipment:

  • Each year, prior to using your fireplace or wood stove, have your chimney and vents inspected and cleaned by a qualified professional.
  • Have a sturdy fireplace screen or keep the doors on the wood stove closed to stop sparks from flying into the room.
  • Burn only dry, seasoned wood in fireplaces and wood stoves and dry, seasoned wood pellets in pellet stoves.
  • NEVER start the fire with a flammable liquid, kerosene or gasoline; use newspaper or kindling.
  • Keep anything that can burn at least 3 feet away.
  • NEVER leave a fireplace or wood stove fire unattended, particularly when children are present.

 

 

News
Another Wells Fargo Bank branch robbed

From Prince William police: Wells Fargo Suspect 1

 

Bank Robbery – On March 13 at 11:08AM, officers responded to the Wells Fargo Bank located at 13716 Smoketown Rd in Woodbridge (22193) 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 Wells Fargo Suspect 2money before fleeing the area in a silver Dodge or Chrysler van. No injuries were reported. The investigation continues.

Suspect Description:

Black male, 5’08” with a thin build

Last seen wearing black jacket with purple stripes, sunglasses, and a Dallas Cowboys hatWells Fargo Suspect Vehicle

A Wells Fargo Bank branch on Dale Boulevard in Dale City was robbed in a similar fashion on March 3.

 


Bingo mixed with aerobics keeps seniors active during winter months

The winter months can be a difficult time for seniors.

Cold temperatures and wintry weather conditions can make it difficult to go outside or to take regular shopping trips and excursions.

The Arbor Terrace Sudley Manor Assisted Living and Memory Care Center near Manassas recognizes this can be a problem and works to keep their residents active and engaged on gray winter days.

One of the ways it does so is by gathering residents in a dining area and playing “Arringo,” an activity that mixes aerobics with bingo to engage the mind, body, and soul.

This post is sponsored by Home Instead Senior Care of Manassas

News
Attic blaze at house on Colchester Road doused

Submitted: 

Woodbridge, VA March 12, 2017 — 8:22 a.m. Occoquan-Woodbridge-Lorton  Volunteer Department responded to the report of a house fire at 1416  Colchester Road in Woodbridge. Initial units arrived on scene within minutes and reported smoke showing from the attic.

The fire was under = control quickly with minimal damage. Fire & Rescue units from OWL VFD, Dale City VFD and PWC Department of Fire & Rescue and PWCPD, responded to the incident. No one was injured.

The cause of the fire is under investigation by the Prince William County Fire Marshal’s office.

News
Potomac Nationals stadium lease deal would be most expensive in Minor League Baseball

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Photos: Potomac Nationals fans pack the Board of Supervisors chambers, Potomac Nationals Owner Art Silber

WOODBRIDGE, Va. — The owner of the Potomac Nationals told Prince William County leaders they had to choose to move forward with a proposal to build a new baseball stadium in Woodbridge or lose the team.

“We’re outta time…We need to know if we’re going to move. The lead time for another ballpark for another community is two years. We will sell the team. We’re not going to own the team unless it is here,” Potomac Nationals Owner Art Silber told the Prince William County Board of Supervisors.

Supervisors listened, and to move ahead with a non-binding agreement that calls for the prospect of building a $35 million baseball stadium with as many as 7,000 seats for the Potomac Nationals to lease from the county for 30 years. In addition to construction costs, county taxpayers would be on the hook for up to $7 million in site work to prepare the stadium site and cover the cost of a $450,000 annual rent payment to JBG Companies, the owners of the Stonebridge at Potomac Town Center where the new stadium would be built.

The annual rent payment would be the most expensive in all of Minor Leauge Baseball, said Michelle Attreed, who works in the county budget office. With a rent escalator clause in the contract, the county would pay millions in rental fees to JBG Companies for the seven acres of land on which the stadium will sit, across from Sentara Northern Virginia Medical Center. (more…)

News
Suspect wanted for abduction arrested without incident

Abduction | Unlawful Wounding * ARREST – On March 8, John David CABRERA-BONILLA, wanted for a domestic incident which occurred at a residence located in the 14400 block of Brandon Ct in Woodbridge on February 24, was arrested without incident at his residence.

Arrested on March 8:
John David CABRERA-BONILLA, 19, of the 14400 block of Brandon Ct in Woodbridge
Charged with abduction and unlawful wounding
Court Date: Pending | Bond: Held WITHOUT Bond (more…)

News
Man, 26, arrested for dealing drugs via Uber

Abduction | Narcotics Investigation – On March 7 at 12:58 p.m., officers responded to the area of Minnieville Rd near Cardinal Dr in Woodbridge to investigate a possible ongoing abduction. A third party caller reported to police that her friend, a 26-year-old woman of Woodbridge, had picked up an unknown man in the above area with her Uber vehicle. (more…)


3rd Annual Historic Manassas Bridal Show

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The 3rd Annual Historic Manassas Bridal Show is taking place on Sunday, March 12, 2017, from 11 a.m. to 3 p.m. at the Center for the Arts at the Candy Factory. This free event is proving to be that the third times a charm for this growing event with a wide variety of 30 wedding-related vendors. In years past, the event has been held at two other potential wedding venues in the City – the Harris Pavilion and the Manassas Museum Lawn. This year will be the first indoor show at another great downtown wedding venue – Center for the Arts at the Candy Factory.

This year’s Bridal Show will make the most out of this unique, gorgeous location. The first floor of the Center for the Arts features a gallery ideal for a happy hour before the reception. Hop on the elevator to the third floor featuring the perfect space for a reception. With gorgeous exposed brick walls and hardwood floors, this space is perfect for a reception with around 120 guests.

This year’s show will feature 30 vendors located on both the first and third floors. Local downtown merchants including Amy’s Bridal Boutique, Shining Sol Candle Company, Scatter Seeds, Jirani Coffeehouse, Travel Place, and Okra’s Cajun Creole will be set up along with popular venues such as Morais Vineyards and Airlie. Photographers, bakers, entertainment providers, specialty gift providers and more will be set up as well. A complete listing of all participating vendors can be found here. (more…)


Manassas Park builds community, finds success with youth basketball

Ask any Manassas Park, Department of Parks and Recreation staff member what is the most popular program offered and without hesitation, they will respond, “The youth basketball league.”

The Manassas Park Youth Basketball League (MPYBL) is going into its 20th year, and lots of credit is owed to the community spirit the residents and employees of Manassas Park exude.

“Whenever we come there’s always a sense of family,” writes 2016-2017 MPYBL Coach Steve Gaskins, “There’s something here for everyone. It’s like a second home. The staff is always friendly and knowledgeable, and the building is organized and clean.”

Gaskins is not exaggerating. Generations of families have grown up with Manassas Park Parks and Recreation including children who enrolled in Manassas Park Community Center (MPCC) preschool before the current building was built and are now graduating from high school. Children who participated in Extended Care and MP3, afterschool programs for school-age children and teenagers respectively, are now working part time jobs at the Community Center.

Many players return year after year to participate in the league. High school freshman Jonathan Ojo enjoys the basketball league for its great level of competition. (more…)

News
Where Woodbridge voter office sits, DMV wants its space back

WOODBRIDGE, Va. — A long-standing relationship between Virginia’s Department of Motor Vehicles and the Prince William County Voter Registrar could be coming to an end. 

A voter registration office at the Woodbridge DMV Customer Service Center — an office in which the county does not pay rent to use — could be reclaimed by the DMV to make up for lost revenue. 

From Virginia DMV spokeswoman Brandy Brubaker: 

“The decision to end our longstanding relationship with the Prince William County general registrar was not one we made lightly. We are proud to have been able to offer gratis space at our Woodbridge Customer Service Center to our local partners for more than 14 years, at an estimated cost savings to the county of $438,000.  However, in difficult fiscal times, DMV, unfortunately, can no longer afford to continue this practice and needs to make the best use of this premium office space to better serve our customers and increase revenue.

The monthly fee we must now assess the general registrar, effective July 1, 2017, will enable us to recoup a modest portion of our monthly building overhead costs. We are not trying to recover previous costs related to this more-than-a-decade-long partnership. We have kept the monthly fee as low as possible, at $2,600 a month, as we have long valued this partnership and recognize that budget challenges extend beyond state government.

Beginning February 28, 2018, we will need the space the registrar’s office occupies for DMV services. Fortunately, local residents will still be able to apply to register to vote at DMV as they have been since 1996. And, with our new electronic system, these applications are submitted to election officials in real time.”

Many of the voter registration processes are completed at the DMV counter and not at the adjacent voter registration office, an office worker told us. The voter registration office is heavily used during election season for absentee-in-person voting. 

Absentee in-person voting is about to begin soon with the special election to replace the late Michele McQuigg, who served as the Prince Willaim County Clerk of the Circuit Court. The special election is set for April 18, 2017.

We’re asked for and are waiting for an official comment from the Prince William County Voter Registrar’s office.

News
Arrest made in malicious wounding where woman knocked unconscious

From Prince William police: 

Malicious Wounding *ARREST – On March 1, Jorge de la FUENTE, wanted for an assault which occurred at a residence located in the 14700 block of Arizona Ave in Woodbridge on February 25, was arrested without incident.

Arrested on March 1:

Jorge de la FUENTE, 25, of the 14700 block of Arizona Ave in Woodbridge

Charged with malicious wounding

Court Date: Pending | Bond: Held WITHOUT Bond

(more…)

UPDATE: Woodbridge man, 54, missing and believed endangered

From Prince William County Police:

**MISSING ENDANGERED ADULT**: The Prince William County Police Department is asking for the public’s help in locating a missing, endangered adult, Peter Dailey COOPER. The investigation revealed that Peter left his residence located in the 5800 block of Anthony Dr in Woodbridge (22193) sometime around 10:00AM on March 4.

Peter is believed to have left his residence voluntarily but may be in need of assistance, which qualifies him as being endangered. Peter may be driving a Red 2007 Hyundai Sonata with Va Tags JNE6918. Anyone with information on Peter’s whereabouts is asked to call police at 703-792-6500.

Peter Dailey COOPER is described as a white male, 54 years of age, 5’10″, 175lbs with blue eyes and blonde/gray hair.
He may be wearing a faded brown leather jacket.

**UPDATE**: Peter Dailey COOPER, who was reported as missing and endangered earlier this afternoon, has been located and is safe.

News
Updated: Shoplifter stabs to death Burlington Coat Factory guard at Potomac Mills

From Prince William police: 

Homicide Investigation – On March 4 at 2:33PM, officers responded to the Burlington Coat Factory located at 2700 Potomac Mills Cir in Woodbridge (22192) to investigate a stabbing. The investigation revealed that the suspect was observed shoplifting inside the store. Two loss prevention employees confronted the suspect as he exited the business.

During the encounter, a struggle ensued and one of the loss prevention employees was stabbed. The suspect then fled on foot. Police conducted an extensive search of the area and were unable to locate the suspect. The victim, an adult male, was transported to an area hospital where he died as a result of his injuries.

The other loss prevention employee was not injured. The identity of the victim will be released once a next-of-kin has been notified. The investigation continues. This is Prince William County’s third homicide for 2017.*

Updated 8:41 p.m.

From Prince William police: 

Murder Investigation *SUSPECT & VICTIM IDENTIFIED – On March 4, detectives from the Homicide Unit identified the suspect involved in the fatal stabbing which occurred at the Burlington Coat Factory located at 2700 Potomac Mills Cir in Woodbridge earlier that afternoon.

The suspect, Jamel Carlos KINGSBURY, was identified by officers through a previous unrelated domestic related call that morning. Following the investigation, detectives obtained a warrant for the arrest of this suspect who has not been apprehended.

Anyone with information on his whereabouts is asked to contact police at 703-792-6500 or Crime Solvers at 1-866-411-TIPS.

Wanted: [Photo from April 2012]

Jamel Carlos KINGSBURY, 35, of no fixed address

Described as black male, 6’2”, 190lbs with black hair and green eyes
Wanted for murder

Update 

Identified:

The victim was identified as Larry Donnell DRUMGOLE, 44, of Rappahannock Academy

News
Someone tried to rob Family Dollar on Route 1 in Woodbridge

From Prince William police: 

Attempted Armed Robbery – On March 2 at 9:10AM, officers responded to the Family Dollar located at 13975 Jefferson Davis Hwy in Woodbridge (22191) to investigate a robbery. An employee reported to police that an unknown man entered the business and approached the counter. During the encounter, the suspect implied he had a gun and demanded money. The suspect eventually fled the area without taking any property. No injuries were reported. A police K-9 was used to search for the suspect who was not located. The investigation continues.

Suspect Description:

Black male of an unknown age, 5’07” with a thin build holding a washcloth covering his face

Last seen wearing a hat with a white brim, black jacket with a hood, light blue jeans, and white shoes

News
Wells Fargo Bank in Dale City robbed, police search for suspect

DALE CITY, Va. — The Wells Fargo Bank branch at on Dale Boulevard, near the intersection of Interstate 95 was robbed this morning.

Police were called to the bank in Dale City about 9:15 a.m., as well as to areas around Ashdale Plaza, and the area around Stonebridge at Potomac Town Center search for the suspect.

A black man wearing a long black wig, sunglasses, a red jacket with the letters S and F on the back, and black pants, walked into the bank, passed a note, and made off with about $3,000, according to initial information.

The man was not armed, according to initial information.

We’ll have more as it becomes available.

Traffic
Old Bridge Road such a hot topic, we need a drink

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Residents, experts to talk transportation fixes at Waters End Brewery on Wednesday, March 8

LAKE RIDGE, Va. — For Lake Ridge residents, it’s no secret that a quick jaunt down Old Bridge Road to Interstate 95 is a thing of the past. There’s only so much room on the four-lane road, and couple that with a growing population, and rush hours seem to go on longer than expected.

Folks at the Virginia Department of Transportation (VDOT) and Prince William County hear the complaints about the traffic and are looking for solutions, even if it means extending a turn lane or adjusting the timing on a particular traffic signal. These are low-cost fixes that benefit the motorists to some extent but are not the magic pill that everyone is looking for.

“It’s a congested corridor,” said Richard Burke, VDOT Transportation and Land Use Director. “There’s only so much we can do. “The suggestions help red flag certain parts of the problem, but any action needs “a little more analysis.”

Diverting the traffic to a lesser used route is one fix that VDOT has utilized in the past, and they are now looking at it for the Old Bridge Road corridor as well. For Prince William Parkway traffic coming in from the northwest, a sign was erected near the intersection of Prince William Parkway and Old Bridge Road in February to entice motorists bound for I-95 to stay on Prince William Parkway and not use Old Bridge Road. (more…)

News
Manassas, Woodbridge included in hhgregg store closings

From a press release: 

hhgregg, Inc. (“hhgregg” or the “Company”) today announced that as part of its turnaround efforts, the Company plans to close three distribution facilities and 88 store locations in order to reallocate resources to align more closely with its strategic goals to improve liquidity and return to profitability. These decisions will help the Company refocus efforts on its core markets and goals to enhance customers’ experience both in-store and online.

Current inventory in the affected stores will be sold over the coming weeks, with final closings expected to be complete by mid-April. The closings will result in the elimination of approximately 1,500 positions.

As a result of the store actions, hhgregg will close its distribution and delivery centers located in Brandywine, Maryland; Miami, Florida and Philadelphia, Pennsylvania. These facilities will continue to support customer orders of all product sold in the closing locations until all product has been delivered.

Stores to close in our region: 

Woodbridge 
Fredericksburg 
Manassas


Manassas City businesses shine, take home top awards

This past Tuesday evening, the Prince William County Chamber of Commerce hosted its 6th annual business awards dinner at the Hylton Performing Arts Center in Manassas to honor the best of the local business community. Awards recognize excellence in business, innovative practices, outstanding contributions to the community and businesses/organizations that stand out among their peers.

The City of Manassas presented its first “Business of the Year Award” to Management and Training Consultants Inc. (MTCI).  For more than 15 years MTCI has specialized in federal and military recruiting, retention and personnel management. MTCI is led by Dalena Kanouse, President and CEO.  Under Dalena’s leadership, MTCI has received a number of national and international certifications.  She is passionate about ensuring the principle upon which MTCI was founded — “maximizing human potential” is at the core of everything they do.  She truly believes the greatest asset of MTCI is the people who carry out the mission.  76 percent of the company’s associates are veterans; of those, 50 percent are retirees and 26 percent are combat veterans.

Additionally, many of the City’s businesses were nominated in the eleven categories of Chamber awards, including local favorite Jirani Coffeehouse for its commitment to enriching the lives of those in our community as well as Weber Rector Commercial Real Estate Services for providing outstanding professional services in the Greater Manassas region.

Four City businesses received top honors:

  • Tech Company of the Year: Aurora Flight Sciences

Headquartered at the Manassas Regional Airport, Aurora Flight Sciences is a world-wide leader in the research and development of unmanned aircraft systems, robotics and autonomous flight technologies.

  • Emerging Business of the Year: KO Distilling

Craft distillery KO Distilling opened their doors in the City of Manassas on September 12, 2015 with a 12,000 square foot facility featuring a state-of-the-art distilling plant, barrel storage, and tasting room. Co-founded by college classmates and long-time friends Bill Karlson and John O’Mara, KO Distilling is part of the emerging craft spirits industry in Virginia, providing exports as well as tourism revenue.

  • Business Excellence Award (11+ Employees): Vanderpool, Frostick & Nishanian, PC

From their start in 1986, one of Vanderpool, Frostick & Nishanian’s goals was to become a sophisticated law firm providing top-notch work for the community’s legal needs. Over the years, Vanderpool, Frostick & Nishanian has grown to include twelve practice areas and 29 employees who all work in concert to provide every client with the best possible outcome for their legal needs.

  • Agnes L. Colgan Community Service Award, Arts and Education: Center for the Arts

The mission of the Center for the Arts is to enrich the creative community by engaging people of all ages; celebrating diversity, fostering innovation and cultivating collaboration and communication. Where similar organizations may be focused solely on visual arts, or dance, or theatre with programs for either adults or children; the Center for the Arts is proud to offer programs for all ages, in a multitude of mediums.

Additional Nominees from the City of Manassas:

Innovative Practice/Partnership of the Year: Historic Manassas Inc., Novant Health UVA Health System

Community Outreach Award: Jirani Coffeehouse, Mr. Handyman, Apple Federal Credit Union, Transaction Expert

Government Contractor of the Year: MTCI-Management and Training Consultants Inc.

Outstanding Professional Service: Weber Rector Commercial Real Estate Services Inc., Twin Air LLC, Mr. Handyman

Tech Company of the Year: Tracen Technologies Excellence in Small Business: Transaction Expert Business Excellence Award: Hepburn and Sons, Apple Federal Credit Union

Chuck Colgan Visionary Award: Mike Vanderpool

Agnes L. Colgan Community Service Awards: Health and Human Service: Action in Community Through Service (ACTS), Apple Federal Credit Union

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