Wednesday, February 14, 2024

Stand With Youth Assembly

There has been a spate of drug overdoses among young people in Arlington in recent months. including two fatal overdoses from fentanyl. A heavily-attended assembly to advocate for funding for prevention efforts and especially for increased after-school activities was convened by VOICE (Virginians Organized for Interfaith Community Engagement) and ASHPA (Arlington Schools Hispanic Parents Association). Particularly moving testimonies and a call for help were made by Luz Rodriguez, the mother of Jorge Chavarria Rodriguez, a teenager who died from a fatal overdose, and from Marina Cura, a Wakefield High School student sharing her own struggles and making a plea for mental health support for our youth.

Janeth Valenzuela of ASHPA, County Board members Takis Karantonis and Maureen Coffey, Arlington school board members Mary Kadera and Bethany Sutton, plus numerous faith and community leaders spoke about how to move forward.

There is additional coverage of the event in an article in the Washington Post.

Photography by Lloyd Wolf.

Sunday, February 11, 2024

Tsagaan Sar 2024 - Year of the Dragon (#1)

Mongolian Tsagaan Sar, the Lunar New Year Festival for the Year of the Dragon, was just celebrated in Arlington. Much of our County's large Mongolian community lives in the Columbia Pike corridor.

The gathering features Mongolian foods, dance, traditional wrestling (a national sport), costumes, music, and pageantry from Mongolian lore. Particular respect is paid to the elders of the community.

There will be additional celebrations of the festival in the community, which we will also be documenting.

Thank you to Ganna Gankhuyag Natsag, the Cultural Envoy of Mongolia.
Photography by Lloyd Wolf.