Four Arlandria and Del Ray residents were presented with CIVIC awards at the city of Alexandria’s annual birthday celebration on Saturday.
Recipients Kevin Beekman, Nick Partee, Travis Hester and Melissa Garcia were all honored for their work making the streets and parks of Arlandria cleaner and safer as well as for their efforts in opening a new community building and farmers market.
Alexandria hands out CIVIC awards to citizens and organizations providing service in meeting park, recreation and cultural needs.
“This award is such an honor,” Beekman said in a press release. “So many things have begun happening to make Arlandria a great place for residents and neighbors—this really just tops it off!”
“This isn’t something a small group could have done alone,” Partee said. “But it seemed to inspire neighbors, civic groups, service providers and even city staff to get involved.”
Hester, a Del Ray resident, has devoted his time and effort toward the Four Mile Run Farmers and Artisans Market, which is the first market in Northern Virginia to make SNAP funds available.
“We are very proud of the diversity we have in Arlandria,” Hester said. “We thought this would be the perfect location to implement something inclusive that benefits the entire community and the city.”
The group worked with nearby neighborhood associations and service providers up and down Mt. Vernon Avenue at local pocket parks, cleaning up trash and replanting greenery. During the “Spring for Alexandria” cleanup, the group worked alongside city staff cleaning up Four Mile Run Park, which is undergoing a vast restoration project.
“Whether the common goal is working toward a cleaner environment, a healthier lifestyle or showcasing culture and the arts, it all comes down to bootstraps civic activism,” Alexandria Councilman Rob Krupicka said. “It’s especially great to see all of those things happen in Arlandria, where it will have such a positive impact on the families who live there."