May 2014

Woodburn Homes Civic Association Newsletter  May 2014

Neighborhood Road Construction to Begin This Summer!

by Carol Russell

According to INOVA Fairfax Hospital, the following two phases of road construction are scheduled to begin this summer:

  1. Beginning July 1, 2014 with projected completion date of July1, 2015:
  • Widening of Woodburn Road from Gallows Road to the INOVA’s Wellness Boulevard.
  • Widening of the I-495 outer loop ramp to Gallows Road to include a

through lane and dual left turn lanes.

  • Add dual left turn lanes on Northbound Gallows to Westbound Woodburn.

(INOVA Fairfax Hospital will be commencing a small portion of the project in early May 2014 in an effort to complete the utility relocation.)

  1. Beginning August 1, 2014 with projected completion date July 1, 2015:
  • Add a third Southbound lane on Gallows Road from Willow Oaks

Corporate Drive to the Emergency entrance.

  • Add dual left turns on Northbound Gallows to Westbound Willow Oaks Corporate  Drive.
  • Replace ExxonMobil’s free flow right turn lane from the ExxonMobil

north entrance.

VDOT to Evaluate Repaving Needs of Our Roads

At the April, 2014 WHCA meeting, one of our neighbors asked about road repaving. The WHCA Council has requested that VDOT do an evaluation of each of the roads in our neighborhood.

VDOT will evaluate our neighborhood’s roads sometime this year (during 2014), and will make a determination about the need for repaving.

In 2015, VDOT will publish the list of highest priority repaving needs.  Budget limitations will determine how many roads will be repaved during 2015.

The WHCA Council will continue to work with VDOT to ensure that our neighborhood roads are in the best possible condition.


Social Committee News by Kristin Haynes

Please contact Kristin Haynes at if you have any ideas for new neighborhood social events or to volunteer to host any social event.

Neighborhood Memories

as reported to WHCA by Avonjeanette Hill

(In our February 2014 Newsletter, Betty McCurry recounted some of the early history of our neighborhood and that sparked another neighbor, Avonjeanette Hill, to share “some good and some not so good” community memories of hers, which date back to 1936.) 

Mrs. Hill remembers that in 1936 when she moved into the area that is now the ball fields, the mailing address for this area was “Merrifield”.  At that time, no mail was delivered to a mailbox! Instead, mail was delivered to the post office in the general store in Merrifield that was owned by Mr. Dunn and later  Mr. Vincent.  Also, Gallows Road was narrow and wooded on both sides, and Arlington Boulevard was not there.  Woodburn Road had no name and was identified by a sharp V shape right turn from Gallows Road, and residents had to go to either Route 236 or Lee Highway to get to Fairfax. Mrs. Hill recalled an area that extended from the ball fields to The Pleasant Valley Cemetery on Route 236 as “our Community all owned by Blacks.” That “no longer Black Community” included Bannerwood Dr. (first named Collins St. and later changed to Bannerwood), Holly Rd., parts of Camelot at the dead end of Robey Ave., and the area where Pine Ridge School was located.

Mrs. Hill has vivid recollections of the neighbors for whom many of our streets are named, the Tobins, Robeys, Haydens and Reedys. She also recalls Delbert Walker whose property is the site of the Epiphany Byzantine Catholic Church today.  Her family, the Collins family, were “musical people” and “the Robeys, Tobins, and Reedys would come to their home and learn to play string and other instruments.”  Mrs. Hill, herself, has shared her musical talents over the years playing the organ for different organizations such as the youth groups at the First Baptist Church of Merrifield and for the male chorus at another church and filling in as organist when her uncle, Guy Collins, was unable to play!  Mr. Collins was Choir Director at Mt. Calvary Baptist Church in Fairfax, and founded a choir that performed for all of the NAACP fund raising events and for voter recruiting events. He also wrote a book of hymns and anthems.

She also remembers the Mountains, who taught horseback riding and stabled horses on Woodburn Road and lived “in the log cabin house before the bridge on Woodburn Rd” (currently the home of Mimi Harris), the Johnsons who owned the property where St. Ambrose Catholic Church and the Pine Ridge School (now the police station) were built,  and “the bridge where the fishing was good” and where local churches held baptisms. On a sadder note, there was a family who “lived in the house that Betty McCurry mentioned was a school at the bend of Woodburn Road and the entrance to Woodburn Village…who “were not fond of our race…. They would call us the N word… throw stones at us… and let their dogs out to chase us.”
As a young child, Mrs. Hill picked cherries, strawberries and veggies for Delbert Walker to take to the Washington, DC market, and in fact she did part of this gathering from the property where she and her husband live today at the corner of Knox and Hayden!

Mrs. Hill reports that, her grandfather, William Collins, Jr. was a 10th Calvary Buffalo Soldier, who rode with Teddy Roosevelt in the Spanish American War, saved his earnings and bought the property that is now the ball field from G. Mason.  Mr. Collins did this so that his family, then and for generations to come, “could have a secured future and the rest is history.”

This brings us to some of the “not so good” memories, which relate to Mrs. Hill’s family being told that the county planned to build a high school on their property and that they had 60 days to relocate in order for the county to start building. They were told that if they did not sell to the county, their  property would be condemned, and the family would receive no compensation. Mrs. Hill recalls that they “could not buy in just any community”,  and with the money they received for the forced sale of their property, which was “not the market price of the day,” they needed to obtain mortgages.  Her uncle, Guy Collins “tried to buy land in this community, but was told he couldn’t.”  In Mrs. Hill’s words, “The family have passed on with a broken heart…nothing will ever seem like home.”
Mrs. Hill and her niece are currently working with Congressman Gerald Connelly to gather a “history of Blacks in Fairfax County to be placed in a future African American Museum in the County” and also to be given to the Library of Congress.  WHCA neighbors look forward to learning more about this heritage, and we are grateful to Mrs. Hill for sharing her memories – “some good and some not so good” of our neighborhood’s past.


There are two nearby community pools for neighbors to join for summer fun:

  • Camelot Community Club (CCC) at 3604 Balin Court, Annandale, VA 22003, phone: 703-560-1222 (in season), website:
  • Holmes Run Acres (HRA) Pool at 3451 Gallows Rd., Falls Church 22042,        phone: 703-560-2750 (in season), website:

Camelot Community Club’s (CCC’s) 48th Summer Season


It’s hard to believe that winter is finally gone and we’re now ready to start this summer at the pool. For nearly 50 years, the CCC has been offering our community an amazing place to swim, relax, and connect with neighbors.

The pool opens at 10 am on May 24th. For the entire Memorial Day weekend (Sat., Sun. & Mon.), we will be hosting an open house for the community.  Anyone is welcome to check out the pool and enjoy swimming for the day.  Registration is required, but the visit is free.


The Camelot Pool is a family friendly pool offering swimming lessons, swim & dive teams, exercise classes and social events for adults and children. We are accepting new members. For details on CCC memberships and events, please visit our website at: or contact Courtnie Ross at, 571.259.8319.

Here are some details on our adult socials: Come help us celebrate the kick off of our 2014 summer season! Our first adult social of the season is the Mediterranean Wine Night. It will take place at the CCC pool on May 23 (Fri.) at 6:30pm. There will be appetizers, wine and dessert. To reserve your spot, please contact Becky Heironimus (  The cost is $25/person for members and $30/person for non-members. Look for adult social events throughout the summer!

Holmes Run Acres’ (HRA’s) 61st Summer Season

Holmes Run Acres (HRA) Pool is a community pool with 3 sparkling pools in a large wooded, private park-like setting with picnic areas, grills, and numerous recreational and social events.  It’s a healthy and safe place to meet your neighbors and enjoy your friends and family during the summer at a friendly community pool.
Holmes Run Pool is located at 3451 Gallows Road, next to Woodburn Elementary, in an area that is sheltered from the noisy road traffic, yet still offers easy access to a large parking area.  It’s a wonderful oasis for summer activities: swimming, sunning, grilling, picnicking, parties, aqua aerobics, and yoga.  Your kids can learn how to swim and enjoy an energetic swim team or just relax and have summer fun.

Holmes Run Pool offers a variety of adult social events, movie nights and food festivals throughout the summer. Our family friendly pool includes a diverse community that welcomes everyone. Our facility offers the very best value for your money among the surrounding community pools.
To join, e-mail for information. For swim team information,

e-mail  Also, you may pick up information at the Holmes Run Pool front desk beginning on Memorial Day weekend.


Camelot Elementary School

by Aileen Flaherty, Principal

It is hard to believe that we are nearing the end of another school year!  The 2013-2014 school year was productive and fun.  Part of the fun was due to the fact that we now have an active Makerspace at Camelot.  The Makerspace builds on the National Maker Movement, and the space is a place where students can work on critical and creative thinking in a messy but productive way.   Camelot’s Librarian and Advanced Academics Resource Teacher have designed a number of before and after school classes to engage students in critical and creative thinking in the Makerspace.  Examples of classes include: New Uses for Simple Machine, SCRATCH Programming, and Upcycling Found Objects.  In addition to these classes, teachers and students are visiting the Makerspace during the day to extend the curriculum.   We are grateful to the community volunteers who are teaching some of the beyond-the-bell classes and for the donations of interesting supplies for the space.

This spring we engaged in a number of PTA sponsored events that brought the whole community together.  These events included: BINGO and Movie Night, the Silent Auction, International Night, and the Faculty/Community Basketball Game.  We also had a number of informative Parent Round Table sessions on nutrition, bullying, honesty and responsibility and screen time.  Thank you to the many PTA volunteers who made these events possible!  This spring, our PTA also sponsored a first grade and third grade field trip to the zoo, a second grade field trip to Hidden Oaks Nature Center, and a fifth grade field trip to Lake Accotink Park for a science program about Earth and Sky.

Our end of year events include: Field Day on June 13, a chorus concert on June 16, a band and strings concert on June 17, and 6th Grade Recognition on June 18.  We hope to see many community members at these events!

This summer, Camelot will host a four-week summer program to provide students with additional reading experiences.  There are no other summer programs at Camelot this year, since Camelot’s gym will be getting a new floor.  Have a wonderful spring and summer!

Falls Church High School

by Kristin Haynes

Later High School Start Times Are Under Consideration. Fairfax County high schools could start 30 minutes to almost two hours later as a result of proposals to give teenagers more sleep.  Plans are being considered to shift high school start times to 8a.m. or later , as opposed to the current 7:20a.m. start time. After deliberating over proposals presented on April 23, 2014 by a sleep research team, the School Board has decided to bring four scenarios to the community for discussion during the next several months.

Town-hall style meetings will be hosted in the 8 school clusters across the county to solicit input from the public. After which, the sleep research team is expected to present a final recommendation and report to the School Board in July 2014. The School Board may possibly vote on this issue in September 2014. However, if approved, later high school start times will not be implemented until the September 2015-16 school year.

Our Cluster 2 (which includes Falls Church High School) community meeting on these proposed changes for later high school start times is on Wednesday, May 28 from

7:00 – 9:00 p.m. at Madison High School.  The following link has more details:

Join or Renew WHCA Membership

You can join or renew membership in the Woodburn Homes Civic Association by sending your name, address, email address and phone number, along with your $15.00 per household annual dues, to:

Jeanne Midgett

3413 Beverly Drive, Annandale, VA,  22003-1110

Reminder:  Dues are collected annually at the April WHCA meeting; however, payment of dues is welcome any time during the year.

Make check payable to:   Woodburn Homes Civic Association

Welcoming and Helping Our Neighbors

All WHCA residents,  please let Ernestine Hall at  know if you hear of new neighbors or anyone who needs any type of assistance (such as a ride to the doctor, the grocery store, or pharmacy for medication, etc.)  Ernestine will try to help or find a neighborhood volunteer.

Also, please let Ernestine know if you would be willing to help in such situations. You can email her at:

WHCA Website

Thank you to Loretta Rowe for efforts to keep our WHCA website up to date! And, a special thanks to Joe Loudon for volunteering to help with updates to the WHCA website.

Starting a Home Project?     Need Help around the House or Yard?

Want to Pass on a Referral?


What better way to help each other than to use the Association to share contractors you recommend.  If you have any recommendations , please send them to the WHCA Newsletter Editor.  The following have been recommended by our neighbors.

Please note:  WHCA does not officially promote or criticize contractors.

JL Tree Service, Inc., Fairfax, VA, 703-359-4444,, serving Northern & Fairfax, VA, MD, and Washington ,DC since 1975. Certified arborists provide tree removal, tree pruning, tree trimming & cutting, and 24 hour emergency tree service.  Recommended by Randy and Jess Fulk at 8300 Taylor Lane, who contacted JL Tree Service to remove 3 trees from their yard due to proximity to the house, and commented that JL Tree Service did an excellent job, was very cost competitive and followed-up to ensure satisfaction with their work.

Jim Hughes of MAILBOXXPRESS at delivers quality service and mailboxes at most reasonable prices! Recommended by Michael and Loretta Rowe.

Need your Gutters Cleaned?  Call Jose Landscaping, 571-594-6630.  Recommended by Mark Russell (703- 573-1124).  Nan Bradley recently called Jose to clean the gutters on her house and was also very pleased.

Woodburners Chimney Sweep and Repair, LLC, 8975 Miles Place Manassas, Va.  20110,  571-379-4820.  Recommended by Nelson Hall.

Capital Discount Fuel Company in Purcellville, Virginia, for home heating oil, 115 East Main Street, Purcellville, Va.  20132 ,  703-978-6400. Recommended by Ernestine Hall.

Excellent General Contractor (drywall, painting, tile, bathrooms, plumbing, electrical, cabinetry) Alan Schottroffe 540-869-6390 or 540-533-7467.  Recommended by Mark Russell (703-573-1124) and Michael and Loretta Rowe.

Maria Mitchell highly recommends Pier Professional Painting (Bill Pier), who can be reached at: 703-402-2857.  Maria notes he is generally booked far in advance.
Kristin Haynes had her almost 20 year old lawn mower serviced and recommends this company as reasonable and great, quick service:   Branch Grigg Small Engine Service and Repair. Near Woodburn Elementary School.   Mark Griggs: 703-560-3317.  Also, highly recommended by Michael and Loretta Rowe.

Excellent job of installing heating/air conditioning.  Scott Bailey at Lanark Mechanical, 703-489-7944,  Recommended by Loretta and

Michael Rowe.

Brian’s Home Services for gutter cleaning, 703-505-6153.  Recommended by

Joyce Mcphee (703-560-5382).

CertaPro Painters of Arlington (located in Annandale) for house painting,

1-800-462-3782.  Recommended by Joyce Mcphee (703- 560-5382).

Excellent House Cleaning on occasional or routine basis.  Sabina Carrera, 703-583-7509.  Recommended by Carol Russell (703- 573-1124).

Quality Electric Services at 703-642-1880.   Recommended by Ed and Betty McCurry  (703-560-2262).


Ross Tree Service at 703-583-8733.  Recommended by Ed and Betty McCurry

(703-560- 2262).



• Babysitting Services.
Kelly Haynes
Red Cross Certified Babysitter
• Pet Sitting Services
Nicole Haynes
Pet Sitter


Service & Replacements

Call Scott Bailey at Lanark Mechanical


Email address is:

Website is:

Woodburn Homes Civic Association (WHCA) Meeting

April 28, 2014

Proposed Minutes for Approval at July 28, 2014 Meeting

The spring WHCA meeting, held at Epiphany Byzantine Catholic Church, was called to order at 7:35pm by Carol Russell, President.


In addition to the 5 officers listed below, 9 members attended the meeting, for a total of 14 attendees.

Officers present were:

President Carol Russell

Vice President Loretta Rowe

Secretary Anna Fotias

Treasurer Jeanne Midgett

Area Representative Kristin Haynes

Carol Russell, President, distributed the meeting agenda, which was accepted as proposed.  A motion was made, seconded and passed to accept the previous January 27, 2014 WHCA meeting minutes. President Russell thanked Secretary Anna Fotias for production of the quarterly meeting minutes and reported that WHCA Council members met on April 10, 2014 to prepare for this April 28 WHCA meeting.

The President then asked for the Officers’ reports, provided as follows:

Vice-President Loretta Rowe reported that work is progressing on creation of WHCA welcome gift baskets for new neighbors and on updating the WHCA website.

Treasurer Jeanne Midgett reported there is $892.75 in the WHCA Treasury as of March 31, 2014.  This is the balance prior to WHCA’s annual donation of $75.00 each to Falls Church High School for their All Night Graduation Party and to the Epiphany Byzantine Catholic Church for providing WHCA meeting space. Treasurer Jeanne Midgett then reminded members that WHCA annual dues were due at this April 28,  2014 meeting and that she would appreciate payment at the end of the meeting to facilitate her accurate recordkeeping.

Secretary Anna Fotias, as WHCA Newsletter editor, reported that the deadline for submission of materials for publication in the next Newsletter is May 20, 2014.  She requested that members consider submitting their articles of community interest and any recommendations for contractors and service providers to help make the Newsletter as informative as possible. Distribution of the next Newsletter is scheduled to occur at the end of May.

Area Representative Coordinator, Kristin Haynes reported on upcoming social activities.  Mainly, a neighborhood yard sale is scheduled on Saturday, May 3 from 8am-12Noon on the corner of Hayden and Beverly Drive. She has not received any new volunteers for WHCA Neighborhood Block Captains, and suggested waiting until WHCA actually had some materials to be distributed and then requesting volunteers to help deliver these items in their respective blocks.  Finally, she noted that Dan Pritchard has offered to host this year’s annual WHCA summer picnic at his home on Beverly Drive in September 2014, with a specific date to be determined and announced.

Ernestine Hall, who is the coordinator for welcoming and providing assistance to community residents, reported that she was not aware of any new neighbors or requests for assistance.

President Russell then called for the annual election of WHCA officers for 2014-2015, noting that the minimum attendance of ten people was present as required by the Bylaws. A motion was made to re-elect the current officers as a group; the motion was seconded and approved, thus the election was held by voice vote. The officers elected were:

President: Carol Russell

Vice-President: Loretta Rowe

Secretary: Anna Fotias

Treasurer: Jeanne Midgett

Area Representative: Kristin Haynes

The President then announced the arrival of a new family to the neighborhood on Hayden Lane, next door to Richard Morris. Vice-President Loretta Rowe mentioned meeting these new neighbors, parents Scott and June and their son Chance, and welcoming them to our community. Another new arrival is Alessandra Nider born in March 2014 to Kate and Steven Nider of Hayden Lane.

Other community news included:

  • Truck with attached snow plow is still parked on street at end of Hayden. Steven Nider offered to speak with his across-the-street neighbor about removing the truck with snow plow from on street parking along Hayden by May 23, after which WHCA will take further action.
  • Kristin Haynes is the newly elected PTA President of Falls Church High School
  • Fairfax County Schools are considering changing to later High School start time. Kristin Haynes reported that Fairfax County high schools are considering starting later in the morning, 8am or later (as opposed to the current 7:20am start),  to give teenagers more sleep time. There will be town-hall-style meetings hosted in the 8 school clusters across Fairfax County to solicit input from the public on this issue. If approved by the School Board, implementation of the new start times would not occur until the Fall 2015.
  • State Representative Chap Petersen wrote letter to WHCA offering to come to any civic association meeting to discuss issues of concern. President Russell noted receipt of Mr. Petersen’s letter expressing his support of WHCA efforts to have no parking signs installed along Woodburn Road.
  • Earth Day announcements posted on WHCA website. Vice-President Loretta Rowe reported that she posted information about Earth Day 2014 celebrations on WHCA’s website in April to help increase neighborhood awareness of environmental issues.
  • Woodburn Road shoulder repair is scheduled. President Russell confirmed that VDOT has plans to schedule repair of the ruts along the shoulder of Woodburn Road where they recently installed no parking signs and to clean up the trash there in the near future. There was also discussion that WHCA request VDOT trim trees around the Woodburn and Tobin Road curve to improve drivers’ visibility.
  • Fairfax Hospital road improvements are planned. President Russell reported that Fairfax INOVA Hospital plans road construction in our neighborhood as follows:

Beginning July 1, 2014, with projected completion date of July 1, 2015:

  • Widening of Woodburn Road from Gallows Road to INOVA’s Wellness Boulevard.
  • Widening of the I-495 outer loop ramp to Gallows Road to include a through lane and dual left turn lanes.
  • Add dual left turn lanes on Northbound Gallows to Westbound Woodburn.

(INOVA will be commencing a small portion of the project in early May 2014 in an effort to complete the utility relocation.)

Beginning August 1, 2014 with projected completion date of July 1, 2015:

  • Add a third Southbound lane on Gallows Road from Willow Oaks Corporate Drive to INOVA’s Emergency entrance.
  • Add dual left turns on Northbound Gallows to Westbound Willow Oaks Corporate Drive.
  • Replace ExxonMobil’s free flow right turn lane from the ExxonMobil north entrance.
  • WHCA website will post recommendations and warnings about service contractors. Vice-President Loretta Rowe suggested that WHCA continue to post on its website any negative comments received concerning individual’s experiences with contractors or service providers. A motion was made, seconded and passed to keep posting negative as well as positive comments on WHCA’s website. However, WHCA’s quarterly newsletter will publish only recommendations for, and not warnings against, contractors and service providers in its Neighborhood Referrals Database.
  • WHCA Membership Directory is to be distributed to WHCA members only. A WHCA Membership Directory containing names, mailing addresses, telephone numbers and e-mail addresses of WHCA members, who give their permission to be included in the Directory, is being prepared for distribution only to WHCA members who have paid their April 2014 WHCA annual dues.
  • No news on Exxon Mobil property sale.  President Russell reported that there is no new information yet on any potential buyers or new tenants for Exxon Mobil’s 117 acre campus, which was officially put up for sale in November 2013.  The land still remains zoned for corporate use only with an option for a hotel, and not for residential or medical facility use.  We will continue to monitor and report on what impact a new buyer/tenant of the Exxon Mobil property could have on our community.
  • Osher Lifelong Learning Institute (OLLI) at George Mason University (GMU) plans an OLLI fashion show and luncheon fundraiser on May 20, 2014. Secretary Anna Fotias provided information on, and encouraged WHCA neighbors to attend, the OLLI fashion show and luncheon on May 20 at the Country Club of Fairfax beginning at 10:30am for the admission fee of $55 per person. Funds raised are to benefit OLLI programs and GMU student scholarships.
  • VDOT road repair schedule for our neighborhood is requested. Steven Nider noted that pot holes on Hayden were becoming dangerous and asked if VDOT has a road repair schedule for our neighborhood. Also, Randy Fulk stated that his home on Taylor has a rain water drainage problem and asked for advice on whether VDOT would install a drainage pipe under his drive way or the street to fix it. WHCA will follow up on both of these requests.

President Russell adjourned the meeting at 8:10pm.  Coffee and desserts, provided by Council members, were enjoyed by attendees remaining to socialize.  Our next Association meeting is scheduled for July 28, 2014 at 7:30pm in the Byzantine Catholic Church’s social hall basement, with separate entrance across from church.