Making Great Falls Better 

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Latest from VDOT on Route 7 Road Closures

For more info go to: https://connectroute7.org/news_updates/lane_closures.asp

GFCA is a 100% volunteer 501(c)4 organization without paid staff.

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Holiday Ornament Sale Begins Oct. 7

GFCA and The Arts of Great Falls have teamed up to offer signature ornaments of Great Falls.  It is the first of what is planned to be an annual series of ornaments that will highlight the many unique features of our community.  The inaugural ornaments feature a watercolor painting of the “Great Falls of the Potomac” by local artist, BegoƱa Morton.  Printed on wood, the ornament is being offered in two styles: a cutout design (4.4 inches wide) and an oval design (3.5 inches wide).

The ornaments will be on sale at The Artists’ Atelier for $20 each, cash or check only, beginning October 7 at the 1st Friday Art Walk, 6:00 p.m. - 8:00 p.m.  Thereafter, ornaments can be purchased at The Artists’ Atelier weekly Open Studio hours on Wednesdays 12:00 p.m. - 2:00 p.m. and Saturdays 10:00 a.m. - 2:00 p.m.  Ornaments will also be sold during the Great Falls Studios Art Tour (October 21-23) and the Great Falls Studios Holiday Fest at the Artists’ Atelier (December 3 - 4).  The Atelier is located at 756 Walker Road, in the Great Falls Village Center, near the Old Brogue.  As a fundraiser for our non-profits, the proceeds will fund activities in both organizations.

Great Falls Grange to Install New Water Line; Parking Area to Close  During Construction
GFCA has learned that construction work involving the installation of a new water line to serve the Grange Hall will commence on Monday, October 31  and run for approximately one week, according to the Fairfax County Park Authority.
As a result of the construction, the Grange Parking Area serving the Grange Hall and the Old Schoolhouse will be closed for the period of construction.  Once the construction is completed, the parking area will be resurfaced.  The Fairfax County Park Authority together with Great Falls Grange Foundation maintain the historic Grange and schoolhouse.  The GF Grange Foundation operates both as a venue for community meetings, special occasions, and as a venue for public and private events.

Top Stories and 
News Briefs

What's Happening Around Great Falls

President's Notes
Civic opportunities come along and then are lost if not acted on.  Great Falls does not look like it does today by chance or because of some master plan.  It looks the way it does because countless residents stepped up at the right time.

One hundred years ago, farm families in Great Falls, then known as Forestville, joined a nationwide movement that was sweeping rural America at that time, to organize a Grange Chapter that recognized a need to "... build strong communities through fellowship, service, and advocacy." 

This effort resulted in the building of the Grange Hall where the community could also meet for plays, recitals, dances, and potluck dinners.  Our predecessors had the vision to build the Grange Hall, which still serves us to this day.  It opened in 1929.  Had they waited, would it have ever been built during the Great Depression?
About 40 years ago, the old schoolhouse next to the Grange was going to be sold, and a group of residents raised funds to purchase the historic site, eventually partnering with the Fairfax County Park Authority (FCPA).  Had those residents waited, we might have a strip mall at that location today.

And about 25 years ago
, much of the Turner Farm property was to be sold.  Once again, residents organized to save that farm for a county park.  Funds were raised and a partnership with FCPA led to the establishment of a park for equestrian events and an observatory.  At about the same time, Evans Farm in McLean was also put up for sale; today it is a subdivision, not a green space.

As you will read in this newsletter, today’s residents face a similar dilemma.  How can Great Falls preserve the traditional dark skies that contribute to our semi-rural character while also being sensitive to the concerns of residents?

Bill Canis
president@gfca.org


Deer Management Program Underway in Great Falls

Fairfax County’s Deer Management Archery Program, which began on Saturday, September 10, 2022, runs through Saturday, February 18, 2023.  The archery program is conducted in parks and other locations throughout Fairfax County under the oversight of the Fairfax County Police Department, in collaboration with the Fairfax County Park Authority, Northern Virginia Regional Park Authority, and other public landholders.

The program is part of an integrated effort to reduce and stabilize the white-tailed deer population in Fairfax County so as to minimize safety and health hazards as well as other impacts related to an overabundance of deer.  These impacts include deer-vehicle collisions, potential spread of diseases, and environmental damage attributed to deer that can impact the ecosystem.

Parks remain open to the public during the archery program.  Fluorescent orange signs are posted in parks where hunting is authorized.  Hunters can only take shots at deer from elevated tree stands; hunting from the ground level is prohibited in county parks.  Tree stands must not be located closer than 100 feet from property lines or closer than 50 feet from established park trails.  Archers are not allowed on private property without permission by the owner or tenant.

Archers are approved to hunt at assigned sites Monday through Saturday during legal hunting hours, i.e., 30 minutes prior to sunrise until 30 minutes after sunset.  No hunting is allowed on Sundays in County parks.

For more information, see the Fairfax County Police Department News blog and the Fairfax County Deer Management Program website.

Watch GFCA
Yo
uTube Channel Videos Here:

EP Committee Presentation on Fairfax County's recycling Program
https://youtu.be/_ITeR28ULAk

Town Hall re: Proposed Dark Sky Preserve at Turner Farm Park Observatory
https://youtu.be/Picv6xt8iuI
EP Committee Presentation featuring Tips on Lawn Care from Master Gardener Tony Makara
https://youtu.be/JVaAP5th7SQ
Town Hall re: Towlston Rd./Rte. 7 Intersection -
https://youtu.be/FXdel1pYOkc

Town Hall re: Milestone Towers proposed Monopole - 
https://youtu.be/QwRui2L1DNw

Town Hall re: Springvale Rd. Bridge Replacement -
https://youtu.be/npSkWpbIwcw

Deer Management Presentation - 
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=QIV9QOiwlaw

Native Plants Presentation - 
https://youtu.be/WEoC75APda0

ABOUT GFCA

The Great Falls Citizens Association is an all-volunteer, non-profit, 501(c)4 organization that advocates solutions and government actions that benefit Great Falls. 

Our goal is to preserve the semi-rural character of our community while addressing practical concerns like traffic, zoning, retail, schools, parks and the environment where problems arise and solutions must be found. 

Since Great Falls is not an incorporated municipality like the Town of Vienna, or City of Falls Church, we lack a town/city government to represent our local interests.  The GFCA acts in an unofficial capacity to represent the voices of the citizens of Great Falls on these matters, and works with county, state, and national government to get things done.  On Great Falls issues, no other organization has GFCA’s influence with elected leaders at the County and State level, or is as respected by them.

Our charter calls for GFCA to "serve as a community organization to promote all aspects of community interest accruing to a common good and, in general, to preserve the historic, low density, semi-rural character of Great Falls and its natural resources."