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The Ghosts of Alexandria

Posted on | October 11, 2015 | No Comments

October Is the Month of Ghosts and Goblins

But in Alexandria, Spirits Walk Among Us All Year Long

By Kris Gilbertson

When a tour concludes in the Old Presbyterian Meeting House cemetery, guests take photos. On several occasions, a swirl of white smoke appears. Hazy emanations in cemetery photos are not novel or above suspicion, but Wellington Watts has been present when this occurred and attests that there was no smoke or haze in the area. Photo by Greg Knott, Greg Knott Photography

When a tour concludes in the Old Presbyterian Meeting House cemetery, guests take photos. On several occasions, a swirl of white smoke appears. Hazy emanations in cemetery photos are not novel or above suspicion, but Wellington Watts has been present when this occurred and attests that there was no smoke or haze in the area. Photo by Greg Knott, Greg Knott Photography

“About five years ago, an 8-year-old boy comes up to me while I’m selling tickets at the public tours,” said Wellington Watts, owner of Alexandria’s Original Ghost & Graveyard Tour. “He grabs my shirt sleeve and says ‘Mister, I see ghosts.’ Which sounds a lot to me like the movie, Sixth Sense.

“I think, this kid’s pulling my leg as well as my sleeve, so I say, ‘OK, what ghosts do you see?’ He said ‘I live in a house over on Prince Street. When I come down at night to get a drink of water in the kitchen, I see them all the time—I see two ghosts in my living room, and they are hanging from the rafters by their necks.’” Read more

Get a Grip!

Posted on | September 11, 2015 | No Comments

Alexandria Couple Is Worldwide Source of Impressive Tools

By Kris Gilbertson

From left, Robbie Wright, Dir. of Business Development; Christine Heiby, CEO; Dave Heiby, President of Beltway Supply, Inc. and AUTO-GRIP. Photo by Harry Merritt.

From left, Robbie Wright, Dir. of Business Development; Christine Heiby, CEO; Dave Heiby, President of Beltway Supply, Inc. and AUTO-GRIP. Photo by Harry Merritt.

Late 2011 into 2013 was a period of turmoil on the national scene as Congress and the president failed to agree to a federal budget. During this, federal agencies were funded month-to-month at previous budget levels, which meant they could not buy much or start new projects. Small businesses contracting with the government were hit hard.
“The time leading up to the government shutdown was really slow and it really hurt us,” says Christine Heiby, CEO of Beltway Supply, Inc. “When the Fed doesn’t have money, state government doesn’t have a whole lot of money either, and everyone is holding on to their dollars.”
Then, on October 1, 2013, the Federal government shut down. “That,” she says, “almost truly put us out of business.”

Read more

Alexandria Real Estate: WATERFRONT CHANGES DRIVING RISING HOME VALUES

Posted on | January 15, 2016 | No Comments

By Cheryl Spangler

Map depicting new development on Alexandria waterfront.

Map depicting new development on Alexandria waterfront.

Alexandria is not the only waterfront undergoing changes, the southwest waterfront in Washington DC is the *HOT SPOT* for millennials, professionals and investors.  Just like DC, Alexandria is transforming its waterfront and Robinson Landing is touted to be the focal point for the Old Town Waterfront.  Here’s what is coming, how it will affect your home value and the positive changes it will bring.  The current population for the primary Alexandria area is 101,000+ and is expected to grow 9% between now and 2020. 72% of those living in this area have a Bachelors degree, the average household income is $145,000 and the median home value is $662,000+. With the addition of the National Harbor MGM Casino, and the growth of the DC Waterfront, Alexandria home prices are sure to maintain values and increase as more jobs are created, businesses move in and it becomes the center for homeowners to live, work and play.  Below are some exciting additions to the already existing Alexandria Waterfront. Read more

ALEXANDRIA REAL ESTATE: BATTLE OF THE AMENITIES!

Posted on | December 15, 2015 | No Comments

by Cheryl Spangler

Special outdoor spaces entice certain buyers. Courtesy photo.

Special outdoor spaces entice certain buyers. Courtesy photo.

Ever wonder why your home is not selling, even though your price is clearly at or below market value, your marketing is spot on, your Realtor is actively pursuing buyers and communicating great with you weekly, but still NO OFFERS!  Yes, there are many other factors, such as location, time of year, features of your home, uniqueness of your home, price range in general, but there is something else that is in high demand and increasing across the country especially in urban cities such as Alexandria, VA. Read more

JON ANDERSON: CONSTANT AWAKENING

Posted on | November 6, 2015 | No Comments

Yes’ legendary voice keeps the band’s music alive amidst new landscapes.

By Steve Houk

Jon Anderson 1Just looking at and listening to him today, even in his early 70’s, you can still see why Jon Anderson was born to be the lead singer for Yes.

Physically, he doesn’t look a day over 60, and still has that whole prog-rock thing going on, so ethereal looking, gentle features, blonde-gray locks. And when a spotlight shines on him, it is still almost God-like. And musically? He hasn’t lost much vocally, if anything. His stunningly high voice and wide range still manages to reach the edge of the stratosphere. Yes, Jon Anderson was, and still is, the essence of Yes. Read more

GEORGE WINSTON: DRIVEN TO PLAY

Posted on | November 3, 2015 | No Comments

A piano master uses a health scare to craft more of his miraculous music.

By Steve Houk

Photo credit Joe Del Tufo.

Photo credit Joe Del Tufo.

The last time I interviewed George Winston, he was driving. It was about 4 years or so ago, and he was at the wheel of a rented Nissan heading from San Francisco to Minnesota for his next gig, talking away as he drove. It was amazing.

When I called to talk to Winston last week, lo and behold, once again, he was driving, to yet another show. Read more

JOAN ARMATRADING: ME MYSELF AND I

Posted on | November 2, 2015 | No Comments

A musical legend puts herself out there in the latter part of her career.

By Steve Houk

Joan Armatrading. Courtesy photo.

Joan Armatrading. Courtesy photo.

Recently, a friend of mine told me that when he was in college back in the 80’s, he went to his school’s coffee house one evening to see an unknown artist he wasn’t very familiar with, a woman by the name of Joan Armatrading. In no time, she transformed that non-descript little venue into a world class concert hall, mesmerizing my friend and everyone there with her very special talents, all right at the beginning of her illustrious career.

Well it’s 30 plus years later, and as far as transfixing audiences, not much has changed. Read more

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