George Mason plots future in Loudoun, Thirty-eight people arrested in herion raids in Dumfries, Twenty-two arrested in Loudoun for liquor purchases for minors and Suspected Fair Oaks Mall peeper hangs himself in jail

George Mason plots future in Loudoun

University given 37 acres in Ashburn by Van Metre Company

Wash Biz Journal

Thirty-eight people arrested in heroin raids in Dumfries

Eight homes raided in what police dubbed Operation Medicine Man


Twenty-two arrested in Loudoun for liquor purchases for minors

Sheriff Department worked with two teens to nab offenders


Suspected Fair Oaks Mall peeper hangs himself in jail

Incidents took place over the weekend, suspect had criminal history


Fairfax deer hunter strategy called inhumane, Sale of Fortune 500 Sunrise Senior Living put on hold, Fairfax to get $200M molecular lab and Manassas Park Councilman Peter Farrell resigns amid charges of fraud

Fairfax deer hunter strategy called inhumane

Bow hunting called “cruelest form of hunting” and “barbaric”

Wash Post

Sale of Fortune 500 Sunrise Senior Living put on hold

Stalling not seen as indefinite, $204M deal still to go through

Wash Biz Journal

Fairfax to get $200M molecular lab

Research will focus on cancer and other diseases


Manassas Park Councilman Peter Farrell resigns amid charges of fraud

Charges stem from residency issues, while Farrell insists it’s from his conflict with city attorney

Inside NoVA

NoVa Food Photography Gets Up Close and Personal

Image: Dan Currier

Image: Dan Currier

Foto Week D.C. (Nov. 7-14) kicks off this Saturday and the Art Institute of Washington in Arlington is celebrating by featuring a photography exhibit of fine food art captured on cellulouid by professional and student photographers. The exhibit at the institute’s Gallery 1820 opens Thursday November 12 and the public can come to an opening reception from 6:30 p.m.-8:30 p.m. that day.

If you’re a foodie and a photographer you’ll definitely be interested in a coinciding workshop the Art Institute is conducting with faculty member Dan Currier on food photography. Participants can geek out on nifty insider tips like how to make those dew droplets behave so well on set with fruits and vegetables, and capture that elusive splash in a glass.

“The workshop talks about some of the tricks of the trade,” and is for “basically anyone interested in photography,” says Dan. His class will be hands on and focuses on using lighting and point of view to achieve a stunning still image.

“When we eat food we look at it for a brief second,” he says. The point of food photography is to “show the audience a different point of view,” than the usual looking-over-the-plate perch we see when we eat and “enhance the experience of the viewer.”

 After all, taste is just one of the five senses.

American Freedom Festival

Country giants Montgomery Gentry, Lee Ann Womack and Phil Vassar headline this year’s festival. The proceeds will go to the American Freedom Foundation to support veterans’ organizations, specifically in the welfare and education of recent veterans. Patriot Center, 4500 Patriot Circle, Fairfax; 703-993-3000; www.ticketmaster.com; $34.50-$99, or $25 with military discount.

September brings a tale of Puerto Rico

38812174Happy September, everybody! The new month brings a new author to the area for a signing in Sarah McCoy, who will be signing copies of her debut “The Time It Snowed in Puerto Rico” at 4 p.m. Saturday at the Baileys Crossroads Borders. Set in Puerto Rico in the early 1960s amid political turmoil, the coming-of-age story follows an 11-year-old girl who accidentally sees her parents in an intimate way she never saw before, and lashes out via attitude and bleach dye job before discovering their encompassing love for each other and her.

The Politics and Prose downtown also has a couple events of note this week. Christopher Caldwell will speak at 7 p.m. Tuesday about the issues facing Muslim immigrants in European countries that he discusses in his book “Reflections on the Revolution in Europe,” and at 7 p.m. Thursday, Jonathan Tropper drops by to promote his latest, “This Is Where I Leave You,” about a parenting expert mom and her four kids bringing their dysfunctional family together at the funeral of the fam’s patriarch.

25636new_storyimage4581097_fullWith the big news of Disney buying Marvel Entertainment for a cool $4 billion, turning the comics world on its head, people are now worried about Scrooge McDuck and the Thing team-ups. Who knows what will happen, but Mickey Mouse needs to turn “Luke Cage Noir” into a flick, stat! Northern Virginia artist Shawn Martinbrough’s astounding illustrations are only part of what is making this miniseries great, and the second issue features Tombstone, a nasty Spider-Man villain and albino gangster who’s reimagined here as, well,  an albino gangster who’s back to rough up Harlem ex-con Luke Cage.

Also out this week: Reston native Steve Niles’ collection of his Batman series “Gotham After Midnight”; the debut of the new monthly “Magog,” spinning out of “JSA”; “Absolute V For Vendetta,” for all you Alan Moore completists out there; and Jeff Lemire’s “Sweet Tooth,” possibly Vertigo’s newest hit series starring a boy with deer antlers and only costing a buck for its first issue.

What books have leaked from your summer reading list into your fall one? Let me know in the comments.

The City of Angels, in black and white

37555865Pulp fiction and hard-boiled crime noir are back in fashion, and while it doesn’t have the same metropolitan air as a New York or Chicago, Los Angeles is a great setting for these types of stories. (What can I say, I have a thing for palm trees, starlets and sidearms.) In his new book “L.A. Noir,” author John Buntin chronicles stories from the true life of cop William Parker and his struggles against gangsters and other criminals from the Prohibition era through the Watts Riots in 1965. Ask Buntin all about L.A. law vs. crime when he appears at the Politics and Prose downtown at 7 p.m. Wednesday to sign copies of his book. Also at the store are two other events of note: At 7 p.m. Tuesday, Washington Post and NPR dude T.R. Reid talks healthcare systems when he stops by to promote “The Healing of America,” and literary wunderkind Nick McDonell will be there at 7 p.m. Thursday to showcase “An Expensive Education,” about Harvard students involved in a debate about African conflict on campus.

12427_400x600The great Kevin Smith, filmmaker and fanboy extraordinaire, found success (and met deadlines!) with his recent Batman miniseries, “Cacophony,” and he throws the Caped Crusader in more trouble in the interestingly titled “Widening Gyre.” Somebody should have had him write one of the new “Blackest Night” miniseries! Another one rises this week, this one starring the Titans,  as its members are forced to go one on one with Black Lantern versions of their deceased friends and loved ones. One of the oldest superhero teams, the Fantastic Four, gets a new creative team in writer Jonathan Hickman and artist Dale Eaglesham in its 570th issue, and if you’re a fan of Dan Brown, you may dig “Spin Angels,” the new series that crosses Mafia hitmen and a black-ops unit that works for the Vatican.

What superhero (or villain) do you most want to see come back as a Black Lantern during “Blackest Night”? Let me know in the comments.

Discover Finder and his latest series

photo11_0Joseph Finder’s one of the leading voices when it comes to books filled with crackerjack intelligence dudes and espionage aplenty (and lots of Washington intrigue, which we Northern Virginians are familiar with), and he’s started a new series starring Nick Heller, former Special Forces operative and ace investigator. In Finder’s latest, “Vanished,” Finder’s brother has, well, vanished in Georgetown and he teams with his nephew, comes to grips with his corrupt dad and takes on a nefarious corporation. You gotta love nefarious corporations. Finder is coming to town to sign copies of the book at 7:30 p.m. Thursday at the Baileys Crossroads Borders.

Those who are interested in breaking down fiction, or even just writing some, may want to stop by Politics and Prose downtown at 7 p.m. Wednesday, when James Wood will be chatting about his collection of essays, “How Fiction Works.” The store also hosts local author Eugenia Kim at 7 p.m. Tuesday when she’ll be there promoting her debut novel “The Calligrapher’s Daughter,” about her mother’s struggles in Japanese-occupied Korea.

12429_400x600There’s been all these shakeups in Gotham City lately, with a new Batman and Robin and the town going to heck with Arkham’s finest running amok, so why not add a new Batgirl to the mix? She makes her debut this week in her own monthly title, and the Man of Steel’s got one heck of a problem in the form of Black Lantern Superman when the ring-bearing corpse shows up in Smallville in “Blackest Night: Superman.” Daredevil celebrates his 500th issue by continuing his arc with Kingpin and Lady Bullseye, “Punisher Noir” (written by the fantastic Frank Tieri) looks great with the gun-toting vigilante targeting Dutch Schultz, and the first two books from the Vertigo Crime line debut: Ian Rankin’s “Dark Entries” (starring John Constantine) and Brian Azzarello’s “Filthy Rich.”

“The Time-Traveler’s Wife” debuted in theaters on Friday, so if you’ve seen it, what’s better: the movie or the book? Let me know in the comments.

They’re not booing. They’re saying, ‘Duuuuuune.’

51oNncKN0pL._SS500_Frank Herbert’s 1965 vaunted space opera “Dune” and its five sequels are close to many a sci-fi fan’s heart, and the series spawned the 1984 David Lynch film (you know, the one with Sting) and many other pop-culture adaptations over the years. Herbert died in 1986, but his son Brian and fellow scribe Kevin J. Anderson are keeping the sandy political and ecological epic going with a set of prequels and, currently, a set of novels set in between dear old dad’s tomes. The latest, “The Winds of Dune,” is a direct sequel to “Dune Messiah,” and Brian Herbert is coming to town for a signing event at the Baileys Crossroads Borders at 7:30 p.m. Wednesday. The store is also hosting ace crime novelist Linwood Barclay at 7:30 Thursday, who will be promoting his latest thriller, “Fear the Worst,” about a single father and the daughter who mysteriously disappears. And Democratic types will want to hit up Politics and Prose downtown at 4 p.m. Thursday since Howard Dean, former DNC Chairman, will be chatting up his new book, “Howard Dean’s Prescription for Real Healthcare Reform.”

12409_400x600The debut issue of “Blackest Night” last month was fantastic, and so should the second issue be this week. It’s getting pretty crazy with the Martian Manhunter, the Dibnys and (possibly) Hawkman and Hawkgirl being turned into Black Lanterns. Who’s next? I can’t wait to see, because Geoff Johns is writing some magnificent stuff. Batman gets his own “Blackest Night” miniseries, and he’s teaming up with Deadman to deal with some resurrected people from his own past. Also debuting is “Adventure Comics” featuring Superboy and Starman from the Legion of Superheroes, and “The Marvels Project,” a series breaking out of Marvel’s 70th anniversary this year that tells the origins of the Marvel Universe.

Better fantasy epic: “Dune” or “The Lord of the Rings”? As always, let me know in the comments!

The inherent zen of a motorcycle shop

37432927I’m back! And so is Matthew B. Crawford, who’s both philosopher and Richmond motorcycle shop owner. He worked at a D.C. think tank for some years before opening up his shop and writing the tome, “Shop Class as Soulcraft,” and he’ll be signing copies of this biography/self-help book about finding more of yourself through manual labor at the Politics and Prose downtown at 7 p.m. Tuesday. The store also hosts Washington Post writers Dan Balz and Haynes Johnson at 7 p.m. Wednesday — they’ll be discussing their coverage and analysis of the Obama/McCain presidential election that went into creating “The Battle for America 2008.”

41ONwmjiTlL._SS500_Being a comic geek, one of the events I’m most looking forward to is on Saturday, when the very talented Ben Templesmith stops by Laughing Ogre Comics in Lansdowne for a signing between 12 and 4 p.m. He’s one of the best horror comics around, co-creating “30 Days of Night” with Reston native Steve Niles and hatching both “Welcome to Hoxford” and “Wormwood: Gentleman Corpse,” which he writes as well. He also co-created and does the art for Warren Ellis’ fantastic “Fell.” His style is unmistakably detailed and colorful, so definitely be sure to check this out since he’ll be signing anything and everything.

And while you’re in the comics mood, be sure to pick up the debut issue of the new “Doom Patrol” series. The “world’s strangest superheroes” have gone through many different incarnations since 1963, but this time could be better than ever since the book’s courtesy of writer Keith Giffen. Also out this week: We fnd out what happened to the Masters of Evil when the Scarlet Witch went bonkers in a “House of M” special; “Luke Cage Noir,” featuring the great period art of Falls Church’s own Shawn Martinbrough; and everybody’s searching for Steve Rogers in the second issue of “Captain America: Reborn,” while Steve is doing his best “Lost” impression and is somewhere else in time.

It’s now August! What’s the one summer read you still need to get to before Labor Day? Let me know in the comments.

California dreamin’

24534new_storyimage7672643_fullHey all! I’m off to San Diego for the better part of the next two weeks, but I wanted to fill you in on what to do in the meantime. Because I know you’re all lost without me. (I kid, I kid.) So…

Go to: Sarah Dunant’s signing at Politics and Prose downtown at 7 p.m. Wednesday, July 29. She’s presenting “The Sacred Heart,” a 16th-century historical fiction revolving around a convent and perfect for anybody who was a fan of her “The Birth of Venus.”

Read: “Amazing Spider-Man” No. 600. It’s a milestone issue for Spidey, and to celebrate, Doctor Octopus is back! All eight of those mechanized arms will be in full effect, as will an appearance by Daredevil, a wedding the Webhead never saw coming and a return of someone we haven’t seen in a while. All that and Stan Lee, too.

Watch: One of three movies this week, depending on your interests (and age): the Disney family adventure “G-Force,” starring a bunch of guinea pigs who are crazy good at espionage; the chick flick “The Ugly Truth” pitting Katherine Heigl and Gerard Butler in a war of the sexes; or “Orphan,” a horror movie featuring one of the creepiest little girls since those twins in “The Shining.”

Buy: “Watchmen” Director’s Cut on Blu-ray. OK, you can get the standard edition, but this is the kind of thing that makes you upgrade your current home entertainment system. While the movie was good in the theater, Zack Snyder’s director’s cut is 30 minutes longer, features more stuff cut from the Alan Moore masterpiece, and looks INSANE in high definition. Seriously, go now. Turn off the computer. It’ll still be here when you get back.

What are your feelings on standard editions vs. super-duper extended extreme editions of movies on DVD? Let me know what you prefer in the comments, and here’s your video of the next two weeks:

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