Transcript News to Use Podcast

Fairfax County Podcasts

June 6, 2018

Good day, and welcome to the Fairfax County News to Use podcast. Coming up, learn about the Library’s Summer Reading Adventure, streetlights and how to report outages, a ribbon-cutting at Hidden Pond Nature Center, commuting options during the Transform 66 Outside the Beltway project and how to avoid tick bites this summer. Links to topics mentioned in this podcast can be found online at


Take part in the Library’s Summer Reading Adventure 2018. This year’s Summer Reading Adventure runs from June 15 to Sept. 1. To earn prizes, you must read a certain number of books, which varies depending on your age:

  • Preschool-3rd grade: read 15 books
  • Grades 4-6: read 10 books
  • Grades 7-12: read five books

Registration opens June 15 and you can register in your local library or online. Learn more about the reading adventure on the library’s webpage at


Did you know that all the streetlights in Fairfax County are installed, owned, operated and maintained by the two utility companies servicing the county. For this service, the county pays a monthly fee based on the number of streetlights in operation. Currently, there are nearly 58,000 streetlights in Fairfax County. Reporting a streetlight outage is easier than ever and helps keeps pedestrians visible and safe. Streetlights along public roadways in Fairfax County are typically maintained by Dominion Energy or the Northern Virginia Electric Cooperative (NOVEC). The Virginia Department of Transportation (VDOT) operates the streetlights along interstates and at major interchanges. You may contact any of these providers directly to report outages or issues. When reporting an outage to Dominion Energy or NOVEC, you will need to have the location of the pole and the pole number. To report an outage you can also use Fairfax County's Streetlight Reporting Map at and search “report streetlight outage.” If you need additional information or assistance, call 703-324-5111.


You’re invited to a ribbon-cutting ceremony and site celebration of the new playground and multi-use outdoor shelter at Hidden Pond Nature Center on Saturday, June 23, at 10 a.m. There will be a brief ceremony plus a cost-free visit to the nature center and family-friendly activities including pond netting, an animal talk at the new shelter and light refreshments. This capital improvement project involved demolition of the old playground and relocation of the play area. The new nature-themed playground contains equipment appropriate for children ages 2 to 5 and ages 5 to 12, including swing sets for all ages. A pre-fabricated multi-use shelter was erected at the site of the old playground. This shaded area expands the picnic facilities. The $1.1 million project also includes site improvements to meet ADA standards and improve accessibility. Work on new walkways and parking lot resurfacing is expected to be completed by the end of the summer. Funding for the project came from the 2012 Park Bond. Hidden Pond Nature Center is located at 8511 Greeley Boulevard, Springfield. For more information about the playground project, call the project manager at 703-324-7195. For more information about the ribbon-cutting, call 703-324-8662 or email


Are you one of thousands of commuters slowly inching your way along I-66 to work every day? The Transform 66 Outside the Beltway project will bring huge improvements to the highway, but first we have to get through the construction phase. The good news is that this summer is a good time to check out several options that can reduce your commuting stress and save you money, too! To find out what they are, visit the county’s NewsCenter at and search “I-66 Commuter Summer Survival Tips.”


Ticks are a concern every spring and summer because they can transmit infections that cause people to become sick. Lyme disease is still the best known and most common disease spread by ticks in Virginia, but there are others such as Rocky Mountain spotted fever. To avoid tick bites, minimize direct contact with ticks. Avoid wooded and bushy areas with high grass and leaf litter and walk in the center of trails. Also, use a repellent containing DEET. Repellents with DEET can be applied to exposed skin and clothing to help repel ticks. Follow the label instructions. And wear long, loose-fitting, light-colored clothing. Wear long-sleeve shirts and long pants. Tuck your pants into your socks and your shirt into your pants so ticks don’t have easy access to your skin. It’s easier to see ticks when they are crawling on light-colored clothes. For more ways to avoid tick bites visit the county’s NewsCenter at and search for “field guide to battle ticks.”


Finally, Fairfax County’s Weekly Agenda provides meeting agendas and information for the Board of Supervisors, the Planning Commission and the Board of Zoning Appeals, plus county news. Find it in your inbox Thursday mornings by subscribing at


That’s all for this News to Use podcast. Thanks for listening. For more information about the topics in this podcast and for news updates, visit You also may call 703-FAIRFAX, that’s 703-324-7329, weekdays between 8 a.m. and 4:30 p.m. or email News to Use is produced by the Fairfax County, Va., Government.