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singh headshotMcLean Community Center Governing Board Appoints Daniel Phoenix Singh New MCC Executive Director
Singh Outlines Center’s 180-Day Plan

The McLean Community Center (MCC) Governing Board has appointed Daniel Phoenix Singh as the center’s new executive director. Singh is replacing George Sachs, who retired on Friday, May 7, after 11 years of service. MCC is located at 1234 Ingleside Ave.

In his previous position as Division Chief of Tourism and Cultural Arts for Baltimore County, Singh lead countywide initiatives in coordination with the Tourism Commission and the Arts and Sciences Commission. Singh is also Artistic and Executive Director of Dakshina/Daniel Phoenix Singh Dance Company, which he founded in 2003. The multi-genre dance company has won national acclaim and was lauded by DC critics as one of the top three local dance companies in 2012. Singh has earned two master’s degrees in subjects that are highly relevant to his new position: a master’s degree in Business Administration from Georgetown University and a master’s degree in Fine Arts from the University of Maryland.

MCC Board Chair Suzanne LeMenestrel said of Singh, “On behalf of the Governing Board, we are thrilled that Daniel will be leading the MCC. His expertise in the arts, technology and recreation and his commitment to diversity, equity and inclusion will serve our community exceptionally well. We are looking forward to working with Daniel as the MCC welcomes community members back to the center.”

Read more: Singh Named MCC Executive Director

Unruly Theatre Project castMcLean Community Center Calendar of Events for April 2021

The McLean Community Center (MCC) offers the following activities in April. 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.

Your Mission, Should You Choose To Accept It
Mission: McLean
Now through Saturday, May 15
Free to participate.

Here's how to work up to a great McLean Day! Answer local trivia questions, complete fun missions and support McLean’s businesses and organizations by signing up for Mission: McLean! Download the free secure Goosechase app and complete the virtual and in-person missions on your own schedule! Participants who complete the missions will be automatically enrolled in a random drawing to receive great prizes. A smartphone is required to participate.

For more information or to register, visit: www.mcleancenter.org/special-events or call 703-790-0123, TTY: 711.

The Old Firehouse
Virtual Family Bingo Night
Friday, April 9, 7–9 p.m.
$5 per person for five Virtual Bingo Cards

Join us for a virtual evening of fun and prizes with your family! Winners will take their pick of prizes! Preregistration is recommended.

For more information or to register, visit: www.oldfirehouse.org or call 703-448-TEEN (8336).

Sponsored by The Alden
(the) Unruly Theatre Project’s Virtual Improv Show
Wednesday, April 14, at 7 p.m.

Free admission.

Join us for (the) Unruly Theatre Project’s virtual spring improv shows from the comfort of your couch! All performances begin at 7 p.m. and last approximately one hour. You can register for one show or as many as you like, but participants need to register at least two hours in advance of a show to see it. A Zoom link and password for the show will be emailed to registrants.

For more information or to register, visit: www.aldentheatre.org.

Read more: MCC April 2021 Calendar of Events 

recycling symbolReduce, Reuse, Recycle at McLean Community Center’s Earth Day McLean—Act Locally Drive-Thru Event on April 17
Residents Can Vote for MCC Governing Board Candidates, Too

McLean Community Center (MCC) is holding an environmental action event for residents of Dranesville Small District 1A from 9 a.m. to noon on Saturday, April 17. Earth Day McLean—Act Locally is a drive-thru, outdoor, event that provides a convenient way for McLean residents to better the planet. Admission is free; preregistration is recommended. The center is located at 1234 Ingleside Ave.

Several local community businesses and organizations will provide four key facets of environmental health in the spirit of shredding, reusing, recycling and planting.

Earth-friendly opportunities include:
• Paper shredding provided by ShredInstead
• Paint recycling provided by Yuck Old Paint
• Bulk/Household Items accepted by College Hunks Hauling Junk
• Composting by Veteran Compost
• Bike donations provided by Wheels to Africa
• Tree saplings donated by Bartlett Tree Experts
• Art Alchemy, an innovative recycled art installation provided by Brooksfield School.

Read more: Earth Day McLean—Act Locally Event

Father Daughter Enchanted Evening Dance 2019Dads and Their Daughters Can Boogie on Down in the Open Air at MCC’s Reimagined, Outdoor Father-Daughter Silent Disco Dance
Dancers will be assigned parking lot spaces and will hear the tunes through headphones.

The program staffers at McLean Community Center have reimagined the center’s popular Father-Daughter Dance that was held in 2019 but was canceled in 2020 due to the pandemic. This year, a new Father-Daughter Silent Disco Dance will be held from 7-8:30 p.m. on Friday, April 30, in the center’s parking lot. Admission is $25 per participant; $15 for MCC district residents. Preregistration is required. The center is located at 1234 Ingleside Avenue.

The dance is for fathers and daughters of all ages. Participants will be required to wear masks and social distancing will be enforced. Each couple or group will be assigned to their own dedicated spaces and will be given headphones with a choice of three, family friendly music genres. DJ BigCourt will provide music and entertainment and participants will receive snack bags and glow products to help get the party started.

For more information or to register, call 703-390-0123, TTY: 711.

MCC Logo horz color webMcLean Community Center Certifies 13 Dranesville District 1-A Residents
to Run for Governing Board Positions

Three Adult, Two Teen Positions Available

McLean Community Center (MCC) has certified 13 Dranesville Small District 1A residents, five adults and eight teens, to run for seats on the McLean Community Center Governing Board. The board sets policy and provides general oversight for all facilities and programs of the Center, including the Robert Ames Alden Theatre and the Old Firehouse. The center is located at 1234 Ingleside Ave.

Residents of Dranesville Small District 1A are eligible to vote during the election. Open Voting began on Wednesday, March 17. Residents may vote in-person or by mail. To request a ballot, residents may phone 703-744-9348, or send an email to elections@mcleancenter.org. After May 10, ballots must be picked up in person only. Open voting will end on Saturday, May 15, at 5 p.m. All ballots must be received at MCC by 5 p.m. to be counted.

There also will be two in-person voting opportunities at MCC: MCC’s Earth Day McLean—Act Locally event on Saturday, April 17, from 9 a.m. to noon and McLean Day 2021: A Drive-Thru Celebration, on Saturday, May 15, between the hours of 11 a.m. and 5 p.m. Both events will be held at McLean Community Center, 1234 Ingleside Ave.


Three adult positions and two youth positions are open this year. The adult candidates who receive the three-highest vote counts will serve three-year (3) terms. Youth candidates, one from the McLean High School boundary area and one from the Langley High School boundary area, will serve one-year (1) terms. Youth candidates do not have to attend these schools to serve on the board.

Adult Candidate Personal Statements

Sepehr Harandi
I’m a McLean boy, I attended Churchill Road Elementary, Cooper Middle and Langley High schools, Longwood University where I played Division 1 soccer and obtained my master’s from Oklahoma University. Growing up in McLean was vital to my maturity and development and I ultimately returned. I’ve been involved in the community in a variety of ways—coaching McLean youth football and basketball, sponsoring McLean 5k and playing for McLean Youth Sports. I choose to run for the MCC board to be a vital part of the community and stay connected to my roots while helping in any way I can.

Read more: 2021 MCC Governing Board Candidates

Fill Us In crayon imageMcLean Community Center Holds A Virtual Public Hearing on FY2023 Programs and Asks Tax District Residents to “Fill Us In” on Their Choice of Programs and Services

The McLean Community Center (MCC) is asking residents of Small District 1A-Dranesville, who pay a real estate tax surcharge to support the center, to “Fill Us In” on what kinds of new programs and services they would like to see offered and/or improved upon in the planning for the center’s FY2023 fiscal year. Residents can access an online survey to submit their ideas, here: https://conta.cc/3ckvdsU.

In addition, MCC is holding a Virtual Public Hearing on FY 2023 Programs at 7:30 p.m. on Wednesday, March 24, over Zoom (ZOOM Meeting ID: 817 619 39845; Password: 559547). The hearing is the first step in planning for the FY2023 budget cycle, which begins July 1, 2022, and ends June 30, 2023. MCC’s operations include the Robert Ames Alden Theatre and The Old Firehouse Center. All meetings of the board are open to the public.

Tax district residents who plan to log in to the hearing and wish to speak are asked to call the Center at 703-744-9348, TTY: 711, to have their names placed on the speakers' list; however, speakers are not required to sign up in order to speak. Residents also may submit comments by mail, email (holly.novak@fairfaxcounty.gov) or in person up to seven days after the hearing.

Read more: Public Hearing on FY2023 Programs 

Amazing Joshua Virtual Alden 2021
McLean Community Center Calendar of Events for March 2021

McLean, Va.— The McLean Community Center (MCC) offers the following activities in March. 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.

The Old Firehouse
Learning Connection
Session 7: Tuesday, March 2–Friday, March 26
$400 per session; registration is open and ongoing

The Old Firehouse Learning Connection is a supervised e-learning program supervised by staff, for students in the 5th–10th grades. The program will provide a supervised environment for students to complete their school-led virtual instruction. Staff will provide limited socially distant recreation opportunities for students during their breaks. Program waivers, participant contracts and additional information will be sent to all registered participants prior to the start of the program. To register, visit: www.oldfirehouse.org or call 703-448-8336, TTY: 711.

Sponsored by The Alden
“The Joshua Show”
Saturday, March, 13, 10 a.m. and 4 p.m.
$15/$10 MCC tax district residents (this fee is per device)

Joshua Holden is a modern-day Mr. Rogers with hipster appeal! When Mr. Nichols makes an unnerving self-discovery that causes him to spiral down a path of loneliness and hopeless despair, it's up to Joshua and his cast of characters, including Larry the Lint and the Wonderbook, to show his best friend the joy in being yourself. With live music, physical comedy and multiple styles of puppetry, this whimsical show is sure to bring out everyone's joyful side. Purchase tickets at www.aldentheatre.org.

Read more: MCC March 2021 Calendar of Events 

red happy man hand up after selectionCare About Your Community? McLean Community Center is Seeking Candidates to Run for Election to Its 2021-2022 Governing Board
Nominating Petitions Will Be Available Thursday, Jan. 21

The McLean Community Center (MCC), an agency of Fairfax County Government, is seeking residents of Small District 1A-Dranesville to run for seats on its 11-member volunteer board. The board provides oversight and guidance for MCC programs and facilities, including the Robert Ames Alden Theatre (“The Alden”) and The Old Firehouse Center. MCC is located at 1234 Ingleside Ave.

To run for a seat on the volunteer board, a candidate must reside in the Center’s tax district (Small District 1A-Dranesville). Three adult positions and two youth positions are open this year. To have their names placed on election ballots, candidates are required to obtain the signatures of 10 tax district residents in their respective categories (either adult or youth). Candidate petition packets will be available at MCC starting at 9 a.m. on Thursday, Jan. 21. Residents who would prefer to not enter the center can call 703-744-9348, to arrange for an MCC staff member to deliver a candidate packet to them in the MCC parking lot.

The three adult candidates who receive the three highest vote counts will serve three-year terms. Youth members will serve one-year terms. Adult candidates must be at least 18 years of age as of Saturday, May 15, the date of the center’s annual McLean Day festival, where the election is usually held. Youth candidates must be 15-17 years of age on McLean Day (born May 16, 2003 to May 16, 2006). One youth member will be elected to represent McLean High School boundary area and one will be elected to represent Langley High School boundary area. Youth candidates are not required to attend either school (private school or home-schooled students are eligible), but they must indicate where they reside in terms of the areas served by the respective high schools, as defined by Fairfax County Public Schools.

Key Election Dates:
• Thursday, Jan 21: Candidate Petition Packets are available at MCC.
• Friday, March 12: Completed Petition Packets are due to MCC by 5 p.m.
• Wednesday, March 17: Open Voting begins at the MCC. Residents may vote in-person or by mail and may phone, send an email, or fill out an online form to request ballots for their households. The requested ballots will be mailed to their homes.
• Saturday, March 13: Candidates’ Orientation (via Zoom).
• Wednesday, March 17: Open Voting begins at the MCC.
• Saturday, May 15: Open Voting ends at 5 p.m.

For more information on the MCC Governing Board Elections, logon to the Governing Board Candidates’ webpage: https://bit.ly/2MYdJJN, or contact Executive Assistant Holly Novak at 703-744-9348 or holly.novak@fairfaxcounty.gov.

George SachsMCC Executive Director George Sachs Announces His Retirement

McLean Community Center (MCC) Executive Director George Sachs is announcing his retirement effective Friday, May 7, 2021. At the time of his retirement, Sachs will have served as the executive director at MCC for 11 years (2010-2021). The MCC Governing Board will be conducting a national search for his replacement with hopes of identifying his replacement by the end of March 2021, to allow time for a transfer of institutional knowledge from Sachs to the new director.

Sachs said during his tenure, “There was never a dull moment or lack of challenges.” Among them was his successful leadership of the recent renovation and expansion of the center’s 40-year-old Ingleside Ave. facility. The five-year, $8-million-dollar project involved securing an architectural firm to design and plan the renovation, working with Fairfax County staff to secure contracted services, closing the center for two years and relocating programs and services, and the entire MCC staff to four separate locations in McLean, overseeing the construction from beginning to end, returning programs and staff to the facility upon the renovation completion and creating a new slate of programs and services in the newly expanded facility.

Sachs’ career in the Recreation, Parks and Leisure Services profession started in 1974, when he was hired as a Recreation Specialist with the Fairfax County Department of Recreation. He later was hired by the Fairfax County Park Authority and opened the first RECenter at Wakefield Park, now named Audrey Moore RECenter. He left the county in 1982 to open the new Fieldhouse Sports Complex at George Mason University and managed the university’s recreation and sports facilities. While there, he also became an adjunct professor for the Department of Parks, Recreation and Leisure Services. In 1991, he was hired as the Deputy Director of MCC under Executive Director Page Shelp. Four years later, he moved to South Carolina, where he owned and operated what grew to be a chain of five recreation, health and fitness centers.

Read more: Sachs Announces Retirement in 2021

be fit logo whatsnewMcLean Community Center’s Live & Virtual Be Fit McLean Health & Wellness Fair is January 23

With the start of the new year, many people have made resolutions to improve their health. Be Fit McLean, a virtual health and wellness fair produced by the McLean Community Center (MCC), can help them meet resolution goals by providing health-enhancing information. Be Fit McLean, a live, virtual health fair event, will be held from 4 p.m. to 5:30 p.m. on Saturday, Jan. 23. Admission is free; however, registration is required.

This health and wellness fair brings highly qualified health experts and health-related activities to the community. The event features insights on healthy living and overall well-being. Focusing on aspects of healthy living, such as happiness, fitness, dance, nutrition and physical and mental health, Be Fit McLean offers participants of all ages the opportunity to learn more about how to create their path to a healthy and active life. Attractions include health-related lectures provided by certified nutritionist Kristen McGill of Giant Food and Virginia Hospital Center staff on such topics as the science of happiness, how to improve your resilience and stay strong and stress reduction.

To register or for more information, visit www.mcleancenter.org.