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craft show logo 2020Watch it live! McLean Holiday Art & Crafts Festival Goes Virtual for 2020
McLean, Va.—The 2020 McLean Holiday Art & Crafts Festival, produced by the McLean Community Center, is being broadcast live this year at 4 p.m. on Saturday, Dec. 5, and Sunday, Dec. 6. Founded in 1982, the popular juried show features an exceptional group of regional artisans. Admission to the show is free; however, registration is required.

According to MCC Special Events Manager Catherine Nesbitt, the live broadcast will allow viewers a behind-the-scenes look at how artists and crafters create their products. “During our in-person event, we require the artists to be onsite, which allows attendees to meet them, but in some ways the virtual show allows for an even more intimate experience of how these artists are inspired to create their masterpieces,” she said. “In addition, the format will allow attendees to ask the artists questions in real time."

This year’s festival includes high-quality, traditional handcrafted works by established and seasoned artisans as well as innovative concepts by a number of new artists who are exhibiting. There will be pottery, glass, jewelry, holiday decorations, mixed media, fashion accessories, wood, fine art, artisanal foods, and more, all on display and all for sale—just in time for the holidays.

Show management is provided in part by the Northern Virginia Handcrafters Guild (NVHG). Founded in 1972, the NVHG, a 501(c)3 non-profit community-based organization, is dedicated to helping artists and craftspeople exhibit and sell their work, promoting the development of arts and crafts in the community and supporting arts and crafts educational activities.

For more information, call the center at 703-790-0123, TTY: 711 or visit the website at www.mcleancenter.org/special-events.

McLean Community Center Calendar of Events for November 2020

McLean, Va. The McLean Community Center (MCC) offers the following activities in November. Due to COVID-19 pandemic restrictions, many Center programs and events have been adjusted to virtual online or in-person, socially distanced formats. Please check the Center's website, www.mcleancenter.org, for up-to-date information. Residents of the Center’s tax district, Small District 1A-Dranesville, are eligible for discounts on fees. The center is located at 1234 Ingleside Ave.

Closing Notice
Veterans Day
Wednesday, Nov. 11

MCC and the Old Firehouse Center will be closed on Wednesday, Nov. 11, for Veterans Day. The centers will reopen on Thursday, Nov. 12, at 8 a.m. and 9 a.m., respectively.

The Old Firehouse
Snack and Paint
Saturday, Nov. 14, 1-3 p.m.

$35/$30 MCC district residents; preregistration is required.
Snack and Paint is an instructor-led painting class. This event is great if your teen has been painting for years or has never painted before. Painting is a great way to express your creativity! Snack and Paint gives your teen an opportunity to socialize safely. Participants will be painting a fall-themed picture.

The Old Firehouse Monday Game Challenge
Call of Duty: Warzone Challenge
Monday, Nov. 16, 3:30-6:30 p.m.
Calling all McLean warriors. Your help is needed on the battlefield! The OFC is hosting a Call of Duty: Warzone challenge where contestants will need to strategize their way to first place and a Call of Duty themed prize.

Read more: MCC November 2020 Calendar of Events

Recent Cutbacks LogoThe Alden’s Final Fall Drive-Thru Drama is Halloween-Themed “Objects in Mirror May Be SPOOKIER Than They Appear”
World Premiere of New Show Written by New York City-Based Recent Cutbacks

The Alden Theatre at the McLean Community Center (MCC) is presenting its third and final fall performance of its popular, socially distanced theater program, Drive-Thru Drama in October. New York City-based company Recent Cutbacks was commissioned by The Alden to write the new show, “Objects in Mirror May Be SPOOKIER Than They Appear.” The show will be presented over three weekends, from 6 p.m.-8:15 p.m., Friday-Sunday, Oct. 16-18, Oct. 23-25 and Oct. 30-Nov. 1. Tickets are $20 per car/$15 MCC tax district residents. The performances will be held in the parking lot of MCC at 1234 Ingleside Ave.

Every 100 years, the planets align in such a way that allows Spooky Scientists access to an alternate dimension. A century ago, physicist Dr. Doris B. Gool entered and has not been heard from again. Brave the portal this October and help a modern-day Spooky Scientist as you encounter werewolves, witches, zombies and more in the search for what really happened to Doris. A once-in-a-lifetime drive-thru adventure created by Recent Cutbacks (“Hold on To Your Butts,” “KEVIN!!!!!”) writers Nick Abeel, Darian Dauchan, Kristin Parker and Natalie Rich. The story was developed by Kristin McCarthy Parker and Kyle Schaefer.

Read more: Spooky New Drive-Thru Drama Coming

mcc facade webThe McLean Community Center Contracts with Purifi, LLC for Biopurification Services

As the area enters flu season, and as the efforts to contain COVID-19 progress, the McLean Community Center (MCC) is contracting with Purifi, LLC, a McLean-based bio-purification company, to receive a service that effectively reduces the risk of viral and bacterial transmission and infection. MCC will receive the treatment on Thursday, Oct.1. The expected completion time to test, treat, re-test and certify the entire facility will take between 6 to 8 hours. The center is located at 1234 Ingleside Ave.

The treatment is administered through spraying a very fine mist that is safe for humans and animals and kills viruses and bacteria on surfaces for 30-60 days. The spray does not leave a residue and is safe to the touch within 20 minutes of the application. This coating application provides enhanced protection by the sustained killing of 99.9% of viruses, including coronaviruses on surfaces. The coating is highly durable and remains effective and active on high-touch surfaces such as door handles, tables, chairs, countertops, and desks, even after frequent cleanings. According to the company, this bio-purification service provides persistent control and protection from the risk of community, workforce, vendor and patron infection from surfaces and HVAC systems.

Read more: MCC Obtains Biopurification Services 

McLean Community Center Calendar of Events for October 2020
The McLean Community Center (MCC) offers the following activities in October. Due to COVID-19 pandemic restrictions, many Center programs and events have been adjusted to virtual online or in-person, socially distanced formats. Please check the Center's website, www.mcleancenter.org, for up-to-date information. Residents of the Center’s tax district, Small District 1A-Dranesville, are eligible for discounts on fees. The center is located at 1234 Ingleside Ave.

Sponsored by The Alden

American Shakespeare Center on (Virtual) Tour
Live from the Blackfriars Playhouse
“Twelfth Night”
Friday, Oct. 2, 7:30 p.m.; Live music at 7:15 p.m.; includes a post-show chat with the actors
Tickets: $15/$10 MCC district residents
Alden audiences have an exclusive front-row seat to Shakespeare’s beloved comedy. They will get to watch the show as it’s performed live in front of a socially distanced audience, plus an ASC education staff member will text chat messages throughout the performance, answering questions and providing insights.


Sponsored by The Alden
The Unruly Theatre Project’s Virtual Improv Show
Wednesday, Oct. 7, 7 p.m.
Free; registration is required.
Join (the) Unruly Theatre Project’s virtual fall improv show from the comfort of your couch! Register here: https://www.surveymonkey.com/r/UTPFallShows. A Zoom link and password for the show will only be emailed to those who register for it.

Read more: MCC October 2020 Calendar of Events 

learning connection webOld Firehouse Learning Connection Offers Distance Learning Supports
The Old Firehouse Center (OFC) is offering a new program to provide support to families doing distance learning due to COVID-19 restrictions. The Learning Connection is a supervised e-learning program held at OFC and supervised by staff, designed for students in 5th through 10th grades. The program will provide a supervised environment for students to complete their individual, school-led virtual instruction. In addition, staff will provide limited socially distant recreation opportunities for students during their breaks. A division of the McLean Community Center, OFC is located at 1440 Chain Bridge Rd.

The program meets Tuesdays through Fridays and parents can drop off students as early as 7 a.m. and pick them up as late as 5 p.m. Three of the four sessions remain open for registration. Session 2, will be held Tuesday, Oct. 6, through Friday, Oct. 30; Session 3 will be held Tuesday, Nov. 4 through Friday, Nov. 24; and Session 4, which will be held for only three weeks, will meet Tuesday, Dec. 1, through Friday, Dec. 18. Each four-week session costs $400. Session 4, costs $300. Program participants must reside in Dranesville Small District 1A to participate.

Students must bring their own laptops (with chargers), and headsets or headphones as well as their own lunch, snacks and drinks. Wifi will be provided. OFC will have several COVID-19 precautions in place, including performing a health screening each morning and requiring students to wear masks at all times. Students will be spaced at least six feet apart from each other and frequent handwashing and surface cleaning will be encouraged.

For more detailed information or to register, call 703 448 8336, TTY: 711 or visit, https://bit.ly/33TSii4.

BudgetMCC Governing Board Holds Two Virtual Finance Meetings in September
on Center’s FY2022 Budget Proposal
FY2022 Budget Public Hearing is Set for Wednesday, Sept. 23

The McLean Community Center (MCC) Governing Board will use the video conferencing platform Zoom.us to hold two budget meetings in September. MCC is seeking input and suggestions on the Center’s fiscal year 2022 budget from Dranesville Small District 1-A residents. The first meeting, the Finance Committee Meeting of the Whole, will be held at 7:30 p.m. on Tuesday, Sept. 8. A second meeting, the Public Hearing on the FY 2022 Budget, will be held virtually at 7:30 p.m. on Wednesday, Sept. 23. All meetings of the Governing Board are open to the public; participation in this meeting by the public, MCC Board members and staff, will be virtual only.

The FY 2022 budget year begins July 1, 2021 and ends June 30, 2022. Finance Committee Chair Barbara Zamora-Appel will chair the Finance Committee Meeting of the Whole on Sept. 8, when the full board will work on the FY 2022 budget. The departmental and consolidated budget proposals will include a review of FY 2020 year-end actuals, the current year’s budget (FY 2021) and new proposals for FY 2022. The preliminary consolidated budget will be posted on the Center’s website, www.mcleancenter.org, and available at the Center’s reception desk a week prior to the public hearing. 

Read more: Virtual Meetings on FY2022 Budget 

Nine young performing artists awarded 2020 Macdonald Scholarships by The Alden in McLean

The Alden in McLean has awarded scholarships to nine local high school students through the 2020 James C. Macdonald Performing Arts Scholarship Competition. The competition began with a preliminary audition in February, but the final competition was canceled due to the COVID-19 containment efforts. A division of the McLean Community Center (MCC), The Alden Theatre is located at 1234 Ingleside Ave.

The James C. Macdonald Performing Arts Scholarship Competition encourages artistic achievement and promotes study in the arts by high school students who reside or attend school in the McLean district (Small Tax District 1A, Dranesville).

To recognize the hard work and creativity of these young artists, MCC opted to present Finalists Awards of $800 to each participant rather than the traditional first ($1,200), second ($800) and third ($400) places.

This year’s finalists are:

Instrumental Music
Ethan Hsiao, Basis McLean
Alyssa Kim, Langley High School
Karina Wugang, Langley High School

Read more: Alden Awards 2020 Macdonald Scholars

drivethrudrama logo webThe Alden in McLean Announces “Drive-Thru Drama”—Live Performances you can experience from the comfort and safety of your car
Online Auditions will be held via submissions to Instagram.

The Alden in McLean proudly presents “Drive-Thru Drama,” a new model of live theatre in the era of COVID-19. “Drive-Thru Drama” is a social-distancing theater format that allows people to enjoy a live theater performance from the safety and comfort of their own cars. Scheduled performances are from 6-8 p.m. over two weekends, Friday-Sunday, July 3-5 and July 10-12. A limited number of timed tickets will be available through The Alden’s website two-weeks prior to the show’s opening. The Alden is a division of the McLean Community Center (MCC) and is located at 1234 Ingleside Ave. Please note: Performance dates may change if Virginia Governor Northam’s Stay at Home Order is not lifted by early-June; check the theater’s website, www.aldentheatre.org for updates.

“Drive-Thru Drama” is the brainchild of The Alden’s Director of Youth Theatre Programs Danielle Van Hook. “Like so many, I was missing live performance and knew there had to be a way to safely produce a non-virtual show,” said Van Hook. “Nothing replaces the feeling of sitting with your neighbors in The Alden, but I hope this helps bring a little respite away from the screens and returns a level of normalcy to people’s lives.”

The show will be the debut performance of “Small Change,” a play written and directed by Andrew Scott Zimmer. Commissioned by The Alden, “Small Change” follows the travels of a $1 bill as it journeys through time and space, interacting with different people’s lives and leaving its mark on the world. Actors will perform one, cohesive story through short monologues at various stations in the center’s parking lot. Audience members will be directed to drive the route from actor to actor.

Read more: The Alden Announces Drive-Thru Drama

MCC Staffers Create Chalk Art Mural to Commemorate McLean Day 2020 

Before life as we knew it changed, Saturday, May 16, was the scheduled date for McLean Community Center's annual community festival McLean Day (video). 

The MCC Governing Board and staff are saddened to not be able to hold the event this year due to COVID-19 containment efforts, but a few dedicated MCC staffers got together on Tuesday, May 12, to create a commemorative chalk artwork on the sidewalk at the rear of the center.

Facilities Manager Joe McGovern, Youth Event Coordinator Nadia Kader, Registrar Katie Fedora, Special Events Coordinator Val Sheridan Comer, and Camp McLean Assistant Director Lorean Bradley all contributed their skills to bring some of the magic of McLean Day to life. 
 mclean day letters  chalk art in progress
 chalk art lbradley cropped  chalk art completed

Read more: Remembering the Magic of McLean Day