Spring 2022 Issue of Ripples


From the Editor – Stephen Sapp  

Lakeport News 

News from Outside Lakeport

Helpful Information


From the Editor

By Stephen Sapp

As spring finally comes to Northern Virginia (at least, I think this time is for real!), I am once again reminded of how great a place Lakeport is. Mary and I moved here almost exactly seven years ago from a lush fifty-home development in Miami, and those seven years here have made me realize that that’s exactly what it was: a fifty-home development. Lakeport, on the other hand, is a genuine community, in fact, in many ways a neighborhood in the old-fashioned sense of that term. We “light up” for the holidays in December, hold a popular Easter egg hunt for our children, gather on the community dock to watch fireworks shows over Lake Thoreau in the summer, march together in an intergenerational Halloween parade, enjoy periodic concerts of various kinds, and share other social events throughout the year.

And it is Lakeport’s residents who make all of this happen, from the selfless service of our dedicated Board, to the committee chairs, to the volunteers who plant plants and water them, to those who participate in various workdays and in many other ways contribute to making Lakeport Lakeport. A hearty thanks to all!

On top of all this, we have the natural beauty that surrounds us, especially at this time of year. Please take time to enjoy the photos throughout this issue of our glorious spring in Lakeport!

If you have comments about this Spring issue of Ripples and/or would like to submit an item for our Summer issue, you are welcome to email me at ssapp@miami.edu.

From the President

By Chuck Foster

A couple of weeks ago, I got a call from a resident who lives near the common dock. She said there were “thirty teenagers on the common dock making loud noise and throwing rocks and each other into the water.” I assumed the caller was asking me to do something about it so I said I would check it out. While on my way to the dock, I remembered reading that the mental health of our nation’s teenagers is not good. A disturbingly high percentage are experiencing depression, hopelessness, and loneliness. I thought I should keep that in mind as I approached the animated crowd. I also recalled that, several years ago, I saw a large group of teenagers gathered in Triangle Park and there was quite a bit of trash left on the ground under and around the benches. I tried raising my voice to express my displeasure and some of the kids briefly protested, a few picked up the litter, and the rest scattered. I concluded my approach was not very effective. 

This time, as I approached the kids, I asked them in a whispered tone to meet with me. Amazingly, they all gathered around to find out why this old man was whispering. I told them they were welcome to be on the dock but please don’t throw rocks or each other into the lake. I spoke respectfully and they listened respectfully. Within twenty minutes, they were gone.

Several days later, I got an interesting email from Kathy Babbitt, which I followed up with a phone call. She discovered four young ladies looking for something in her backyard bushes. She said, “What are you looking for?” One of them replied, “a long stick.” Kathy said they were very focused on their task. It turned out that they were trying to retrieve one of the rarest creatures to be found in the lake . . . a Safeway shopping cart. Kathy asked, “Who do you think put the cart in the lake?” The reply was simply, “teenagers.”  

With the assistance of a rope and Kathy’s friend Larry Hamblett, the young rescue crew lifted the cart from its watery grave. They then described a plan to clean up the cart and return it to Safeway. We owe these young ladies a debt of gratitude for their dedicated service to the community. Many thanks to these little heroes, Mary Strickland, Mary Coogan, Bonnie Coogan, and Purva Bhosale!

Maintenance Committee

By Paul Renard

And Now . . . New Street Signs!

You may have noticed that our bent, rusted, and often redundant metal street signs and posts have been replaced with pristine new signs. We have installed eight composite signs made of 18-pound HDU plastic with a plywood backing for added stability, mounted on pressure treated 4”x4” wooden posts that should last about 30 years (see photos below). When a metal sign is damaged, nothing can be done about it other than replace it or live with the damage. Our new signs are somewhat repairable (a feature that will not be needed, we hope) and can be repainted in the future if they start to show wear.

We have been fortunate to work on this project with Clay Downing (clay@signsbyclaydowning.com), one of the very few local fabricators of this type of signs and one of the most responsive vendors we have encountered (hint: if you need an HDU sign or any other signage project, Clay is the man to call). With Clay’s help, we designed the replacements, obtained DRB approval, weathered delays caused by COVID and other illnesses, avoided seemingly endless Saturday rain, and finally had the signs installed on May 21.

Part of this project involved removing eight repetitive signs that had popped up at some point in the past and served no purpose; in fact, they had turned into eyesores. We hope that everyone is as happy about this improvement in our community as we on the Maintenance Committee are. Thanks to the Board for approving and supporting this project!

Signs as you enter Lakeport:

Other signs: two Stop signs, two pet signs, and a “Private Property” sign as people enter Lakeport from South Lakes Village


Landscape Committee

By Mary Sapp

This spring we have seen lots of residents sprucing up their landscapes, and Lakeport’s Landscape Committee (with help from residents) has been doing the same for our HOA areas by replacing plants that have died, filling in gaps in existing landscaping, and otherwise enhancing the beauty of our community. In addition, we have regrettably had to remove some hazard trees, we have trimmed some others, and in the fall we will plant new trees to take the place of those that have been removed or died. 

Landscape Enhancements

Entrance plants that died last year have been replaced with colorful heucheras. The photo above shows landscaping next to the entrance lane on the west side (the five golden heucheras on the right plus the three pink ones on the left are new; the rest are existing). The second photo shows landscaping next to the exit lane on the east side (the five golden heucheras in the center are new, and the rest are existing).

In addition, several new plants have been added near the dock. Owner Carol Leos graciously offered to plant three red rose bushes to brighten the landscaped area next to the short leg of the dock, and seven new junipers have been planted to reduce erosion next to the long leg of the dock. In addition, owner Clarence Delaine kindly offered to pay for one of the new azaleas that will be planted in June to shield the view of a transformer under the cherry tree a little uphill from the new rose bushes.

Residents will also notice some additions along Lakespray Way. The row of liriope on the Lakespray hill has been filled in, which will help even more to combat erosion. In addition, a new hedge of seven viburnums will be installed in the gap to the right of the Lakespray mailboxes to help screen South Lakes Drive, and the walk along the dirt path to the access road to the back Safeway parking lot will be more pleasant thanks to the addition of 26 large steppingstones to avoid the mud when it rains. At the south end of Lakeport Way, we arranged to replace one of the holly bushes that had died, and another generous owner, Gil Blankespoor, planted two additional bushes to replace two that were failing. Rounding out the new replacement plants are five ferns that have been helping to slow down stormwater next to 1952 Lakeport Way, and a holly tree at the top of the hill behind 1938 Lakeport Way (some of the ferns and the holly tree were under warranty). See photos below.

Because all of these plants are new, they will need watering through the summer to get them established, but thanks to volunteers Marilyn Bursch, Clarence Delaine, Henryk Gorski, Pete Hatfield, Carol Leos, Paul Renard, Mary and Stephen Sapp, and Rosemary Welch, we won’t have to spend your assessment fees to pay for commercial watering to keep these new plants alive. Instead that money can be used in the fall to add some trees in wooded areas behind homes or near streets and perhaps other landscaping. 

Tree Work

Unfortunately, we continue to have to do major tree work, including the removal of three live trees this year. Most obvious is the huge willow oak as you exit Lakeport on the RA path leading to the South Lakes Village dock. Although we tried to prolong the life of this oak by injecting it with a growth regulator, two certified arborists told us that a fungus that appeared on the roots means it was dying and posed a danger to nearby homes. It was removed Friday morning, shortly before the storm and tornado warnings (see photos of that impressive process below).

In addition, a black cherry in the wooded area next to 11121 Lakespray Way is leaning toward that home, also posing a risk. The cryptomeria in front of 1907 Lakeport Way—although not a risk—will be removed for esthetic reasons since it is almost dead. 

While the tree contractors are here, they will also remove a dead double-stem hemlock across from 1913 Lakeport Way and trim branches on three black locusts next to the path to the RA pool near Sunrise Valley Drive, in addition to a willow oak encroaching on the roof at 1930 Lakeport Way. 

Fall Workday

Thanks to Rich Shelton, a dead trunk next to the lake has been removed and branches that were hanging too low over Lakeport Way have been trimmed so trucks can pass without hitting them. A half-dozen other dead trees have been identified for Rich to remove in the fall, but we’ll need volunteers to haul the debris into a pile for Blade Runners to haul away (part of our maintenance contract). Therefore, we are scheduling Lakeport’s Fall Workday for the morning of Saturday, September 10 (coffee and bagels will be provided to volunteers). Please mark your calendars to join us to further beautify Lakeport. 

Stormwater Mitigation

As we all know, Lakeport’s hills create stormwater runoff that causes mud and erosion on owner and common property and dirty runoff into Lake Thoreau. To try to protect the quality of Virginia waters, the Northern Virginia Soil & Water Conservation District (SWCD) offers grants to help HOAs and individual homeowners fund projects to deal with this problem. Lakeport received grants in 2020 to install our rain garden and conservation landscaping between 1952 and 1954 Lakeport Way, which have successfully captured runoff from the roofs of three nearby homes (see photo to right). 

Unfortunately, surface-level runoff is still causing erosion between 11110 and 11112 Lakespray and mud between 1952 and 1954 Lakeport (even after those owners paid to install rock steps so they could safely reach their back patios). Based on advice from Dan Schwartz, whose job at the NoVA SWCD is to provide advice on dealing with stormwater, and contractor Adele Kuo, who is certified by the Chesapeake Bay Landscape Professional Certification program for “stormwater best practices,” the Board has decided to mitigate this second source of runoff by installing 1) two catch basins to help prevent ongoing erosion between 11110 and 11112 Lakespray from groundwater flowing from near Lakespray Way, and 2) two biologs (similar to those installed in 2019 along the shore) to reduce water flowing down to 1952 and 1954 Lakeport Way. We are happy to announce that our proposal for a $3,500 grant was recently approved by the NoVA SWCD. Installation is contingent on approval by RA’s Design Review Board.

Note that if you have stormwater issues, you might want to investigate applying for your own grant from NoVA SWCD to fund one of their best practices (e.g., a rain barrel, conservation landscaping, or a dry well). See https://vaswcd.org/vcap for more details and links to eligible practices.

Photos of removal of large willow oak at the south end of Lakeport Way on Friday, May 27

Early Friday morning, cars were moved from near the willow oak before the trucks from Riverbend Landscape and Tree Service arrived at 7:40 a.m. After setting up, the work crew started removing large limbs at 8:00 and putting them in their chipper.

Here is the sequence: 1) the crew member in the tree tied a strap (connected to a crane) near the top of the limb, 2) he sawed off the limb, 3) the crane lowered it to the ground, 4) other members of the crew directed the limb to the chipper, sawing off smaller branches as necessary, and 5) the chipper emptied the wood chips into the truck.

 In these photos, the top half of the tree is 1) being lifted up and 2) then lowered so smaller branches could be cut off to 3) go into the chipper.

Here the bottom of the trunk is being 1) removed and 2) lowered (notice the size of the trunk relative to the crew member below it; it was 5’ in diameter); then 3) the crew loaded the five main sections of the trunk into a truck and cleaned up the debris (all by 9:30 a.m.!). 

Photos of new plants (more will be installed in June):

 


Social Committee

Easter Egg Hunt

This year’s Easter Egg Hunt was enjoyed by both young and old. Despite competition from sports practices, participation was good, motivated hunters were aplenty, and lots of candy and some very cool prizes were taken home. The primary “Bunny Marshalls” were Brian Dryzga, Tanya Coogan, and Ashley Strickland. With some additional help from Deputy Bunny Marshalls Bonnie and Mary Coogan and Mary Frank Strickland, something like 100 eggs were loaded the night before with candy or coupons for prizes that were claimed at Triangle Park after the hunt. At 9:00 a.m., Ashley and Chuck Foster hid the eggs, and the hunters gathered in Triangle Park for the 10:00 a.m. start.  

Ashley attempted to give a head start to anyone 5 or younger, but the one hunter who took advantage of the opportunity appeared unsure of where to go. A moment later, Ashley unleashed the hounds, with kids sprinting in all directions. The speed at which the hunters worked was quite amazing. One observer noted that the first round of the hunt lasted 14 minutes flat. The kids were super-efficient! It was a great community event and we look forward to next year’s hunt!  

Many thanks to James Pan, Rich Shelton, Rich and Linda Rosenberg, Tanya and Robert Coogan, Brian Dryzga, Ashley Strickland, and Chuck Foster for donations of candy and prizes.

Concert for Ukraine

A little more than a month after Russia invaded Ukraine, cluster residents gathered at the south end of Lakeport Way to express solidarity with the people of Ukraine. Despite periodic bouts of rain and snow, low temperatures, and a relentless March wind, many attended and stayed to contemplate and discuss the plight and courage of the Ukrainian people. Many thanks to the volunteers who made this event possible: Chuck Foster’s band for three hours of classic pop and rock music; Joerg Dronia and Jeanette Malin-Berdel for tables; Rich Rosenberg for a list of options for charitable donations; Bobby Chan for a recycling bin; Kathy Babbitt for help with the setup and drinks for the band; Shelby Friedel for organizing the volunteers and providing drinks; and Liz Blankespoor for face painting for children and adults. 


    


Standards Committee

RA’s Design Review Board approved adding two proposed post lights (Camden by Kichler and Millbourne Iron 1 by Latitude Run), which was necessary because the current Forecast by Lightolier light is no longer available. The updated standard is on Lakeport’s web site: https://drive.google.com/file/d/1obTtjZk_isundxaUChTjHNcHQAnydzQT/view.  

IMPORTANT: Please remember that both Reston Association and Lakeport Cluster have strict design standards for the exterior of your home. To avoid expensive repairs to unapproved changes, be sure to read the standards carefully before making any changes and ensure your contractor follows them. If you have any questions, please ask a Board member. 

Neighborhood Watch

By James Pan

POLICE ASK FOR HELP FROM RESTON RESIDENTS

The Fairfax County Police Department is seeking help from the Reston community to help prevent car-related thefts. The Reston District station recommends residents lock their car doors and remove all valuables from their vehicles, particularly at night. Police are also asking car owners to be aware of their surroundings and report any incidents where someone is seen checking cars for unlocked doors. Other suggestions for residents include the following:

  • Turn on notifications if you have a home motion-detector security recording system.
  • Be a "good witness" by looking out the window if dogs are barking, a car alarm goes off, or you hear an unusual noise.
  • Observe and report, but do not engage. 
  • Close and lock your garage door.

Police contact numbers are 703-691-2131 (non-emergency) and 911 (text or voice) for emergencies.

BE AWARE OF TEXT PHISHING (SMISHING)

Have you received unsolicited mobile text messages with an unfamiliar or strange web 

link that indicates a USPS delivery requires a response from you? If you never signed up for a USPS tracking request for a specific package, then don’t click the link! This type of text message is a scam called smishing.

Smishing is a form of phishing that involves a text message or phone number. Victims will typically receive a deceptive text message that is intended to lure the recipient into providing their personal or financial information. These scammers often attempt to disguise themselves as a government agency, bank, or other company to lend legitimacy to their claims.

The criminals want to receive personally identifiable information (PII) about the victim such as account usernames and passwords, Social Security number, date of birth, credit and debit card numbers, personal identification numbers (PINs), or other sensitive information. This information is used to carry out other crimes, such as financial fraud.

The Postal Service offers tools to track specific packages, but customers are required either to register online or to initiate a text message and provide a tracking number. USPS will not send customers text messages or e-mails unless a customer first requests the service with a tracking number, and it will NOT contain a link. So if you did not initiate the tracking request for a specific package directly from USPS and the message you receive contains a link, do not click the link!

Book Club

By Barbara Khan, Coordinator

Want to join some of your neighbors and talk about a good book? Lakeport has an informal book club that is always open to new members. No master’s degree in literature is required (not even a bachelor’s!), and no grades are given. Just read the assigned book and show up for a lively, lighthearted discussion. We usually meet monthly on the third Monday evening from 7:00 p.m. to 8-ish, either rotating among members’ homes or, in comfortable weather, taking advantage of our beautiful Lakeport setting to meet earlier (5:30) outside in Triangle Park.

The June meeting will be a “pick-your-own-book” gathering. Participants are asked to read whatever they want and then share a report on that book at the June meeting for consideration as a future assigned book for the group to read and discuss. 

June
Book:   Your Choice
Time:    5:30 PM
Where: Triangle Park (if weather holds up)
Date:    Monday, June 20 



Thanks to Our Volunteers

Please be sure to express your appreciation to your neighbors for their efforts to make Lakeport a better place for all of us to live. And if you want to volunteer, let the Board or a committee chair know—it’s a great way to get to meet your neighbors and to contribute to your community.

Landscape Projects 

  • Mary Sapp, Steven Browning, Don Nagley, and Elizabeth Pan – serving on the Landscape Committee 
  • Carol Leos – purchasing three low rose bushes by the dock
  • Clarence Delaine – purchasing a new azalea by the dock
  • Gil Blankespoor – purchasing two holly bushes to replace failing ones near Safeway
  • Elizabeth Pan – purchasing and planting begonias around two gingko trees
  • Rich Shelton – cutting down the trunk of dead tree by the lake and trimming low branches over Lakeport Way
  • Mary Sapp – writing the DRB proposal for removing three live trees, writing the DRB and grant proposals for installing coir logs and catch basins near 11110 and 11112 Lakespray, and communicating landscape maintenance concerns to Blade Runners 
  • Marilyn Bursch, Clarence Delaine, Henryk Gorski, Pete Hatfield, Carol Leos, Paul Renard, Mary and Stephen Sapp, and Rosemary Welch – watering ferns, azaleas, liriope, Lakespray hedge, roses, juniper, entrance plants, and holly bushes
  • Marilyn Bursch and Don Nagley—maintenance of rain garden and conservation landscaping
  • Don Nagley – weeding and sprucing up Kid’s Garden and picking up debris around Triangle Park

Social

  • Shelby Friedel – chairing Social Committee 
  • Carol Leos – welcoming new residents
  • Brian Dryzga, Tanya Coogan, and Ashley Strickland – organizing and serving as “Bunny Marshalls” for the Easter Egg Hunt
  • Tanya, Bonnie, and Mary Coogan; Chuck Foster; and Mary Frank Strickland – stuffing plastic Easter eggs
  • Mary Frank Strickland and Chuck Foster for hiding the eggs 
  • Tanya and Robert Coogan, Brian Dryzga, James Pan, Richard and Linda Rosenberg, Rich Shelton, and Ashley Strickland – donating prizes, candy, and cash for the Easter Egg Hunt

Maintenance

  • Paul Renard – chairing the Maintenance Committee and overseeing the installation of the new signs 
  • Annabelle Hammer and Paul Renard – keeping our dock clean
  • Annabelle Hammer – restocking doggie-bag stations

Other 

  • Barbara Khan – coordinating the Lakeport Book Club 
  • James Pan – chairing Neighborhood Watch
  • Tom Barnett – maintaining Lakeport’s online directory and listserv for announcements and posting Ripples
  • Stephen Sapp – editing Ripples

Update on Lake Thoreau Pool

Source: Reston Association

The Reston Association project team is still working to obtain the required permits from local and state agencies. Construction has been delayed to early June due to these ongoing efforts, but once permits have been secured, on-site work can begin. Work will be performed Monday through Friday starting no earlier than 7:00 a.m. and ending no later than 7:00 p.m. Weekend work is not anticipated but will be communicated in advance should it be deemed necessary. Noise levels will vary and will be at their greatest during the first few months of the project during the site work and demolition phase. Heavy machinery, dump trucks, jack hammers, and heavy drilling should be expected.

Construction is planned to take 12 months following mobilization so, assuming construction begins soon, a reopening early in the 2023 swim season is still likely. However, ongoing supply chain disruptions, labor shortages caused by COVID-19, or severe weather disruptions may affect this schedule. Multiple steps are being taken to anticipate and minimize these impacts whenever possible.

Thank you for your continued interest in this project. If you have any questions, concerns, or complaints leading up to or during the project, please contact the RA Capital Projects Department at capitalprojects@reston.org or call 703-435-6556.

Here is a link to the summer pool schedule if you wish to enjoy an alternative location this summer: https://www.reston.org/aquatics.


Preventive Maintenance Checklist for Spring

Important note: If you are addressing issues with the exterior of your home, please consult the Lakeport standards and remember that you may have to seek approval from Reston Association’s Design Review Board.


Homes in Lakeport Cluster, all of which are more than 30 years old and some over 40, are unique in several ways. This checklist is designed with Lakeport homes in mind. Your help in keeping this list current and relevant is essential. Please send suggestions to Board@LakeportCluster.org.

Outdoor Checklist (these items will also help you prepare for annual inspections)

  • Several Lakeport owners have had to replace their roofs because of damage from windstorms and aging of the roofing materials. If you have not accessed your attic to check for leaks, it’s a good idea to do so. You may avoid potential damage to the interior of your home.
  • A dark vertical line in the middle of your garage door is most likely caused by insufficient tension on the chain from your garage door opener to the front wall of your garage. Over time, the chain will slacken and start to drag on the door, which leaves that black mark and eventually will wear through the paint if left uncorrected. Most of these chains have a tensioner or turn­buckle that can be tightened to fix the problem. Once you have tightened the chain, the door can be cleaned with something like Scott’s Outdoor Cleaner (or whatever you prefer) and the gentle use of a scrubbing sponge from your kitchen.
  • Check for mildew, mold, and grime on exterior walls, garage doors, fences, decks, walkways, brick, roofs, etc., and power wash if needed.
  • Sand and paint rusted railings so the rust does not cause further damage.
  • Trim overgrown vegetation. 
  • For most Lakeport homes, make sure your home address numbers are properly positioned over your garage door or entry arch (see House Numbers standards). If you have a brick wall by the sidewalk, be sure the brass number plate is glued tightly to the surface and that the numbers are legible from the street. This helps first responders find your house more easily in case of an emergency.
  • Inspect and repair any damaged fences or other outside boundaries. If you have a brick wall in common with your neighbor, examine it for mildew and mold. If there is staining from either, try removing the stains with a power washer.
  • Check the outside lighting around your house and replace bulbs and batteries that aren’t working.
  • If you have outdoor security cameras, make sure they have not been damaged by snow or harsh winter weather. Check that camera lenses are focused on the areas you want them to cover. Clean lenses with a microfiber cloth and tighten all camera mounts. As summer approaches, you may want to protect your cameras from spider webs and insects that can obscure the view. One suggestion is to attach a dryer sheet to the outside of your camera with a rubber band (just make sure not to cover the lens); the strong smell will keep bugs away. You can also try looping a flea collar around the camera.
  • Remove leaves and other debris that have collected over the winter and place in large paper yard bags available at home improvement stores. Check the current waste management company procedures for proper disposal.
  • Remove leaves from gutters and make sure gutters are still firmly anchored and properly connected to downspouts.
  • Take steps to protect wood on your decks, patios, and entrance walkways. These areas should be sealed every two to three years. The wood will hold up better with a sealant rather than with paint.
  • Check your siding for staining. If you see a problem, check with a home repair supplier for a suitable cleaning product.

Indoor Checklist

  • Replace batteries in smoke detectors.
  • If you have an alarm system, periodically change your access code and remove passcodes you’ve given out to contractors, cleaning people, babysitters, or guests who no longer need access to your home. Test your security systems regularly to ensure they are functioning properly and communicating with the central station.
  • Flooding is the single largest source of loss for homeowners, so it may be helpful to install water leak sensors in flood-prone areas. The sensors will detect accumulation of water caused by cracked or broken water pipes, loose pipe connections, inadequate drainage, or flooding. Some sensors connect to larger security systems, some work alone, and some connect to an app on your phone.
  • Move boxes or other items at least 30 inches away from your furnace and water heater; crowding either could lead to a fire.
  • Do a semi-annual check of the furnace/heat pump to assure that you have sufficient refrigerant for air conditioning. Follow manufacturer guidelines for replacing air filters (typically once per month or quarter). A clogged air filter places an unreasonable load on the HVAC system and will likely shorten its life.
  • Turn on outdoor water spigots from inside the house and be sure the spigot is closed on the outside. The valve is usually in a storage area near the water heater or utility tub.
  • Inspect the firebrick panels inside your wood-burning fireplace for cracks and replace them if they are damaged. Have the fireplace cleaned if you use it frequently or haven’t used it in a long time. Remove all ash from your fireplaces and clean the grates. Additionally, schedule a chimney cleaner to inspect the flues once a year. 
  • Check all window and door locks. If any seem loose or faulty, tighten or replace them.
  • If cleaning your windows isn’t already part of your spring-cleaning routine, then add it. Clean windows will make your home brighter and improve the visibility of your surroundings.

Reminders

Maintenance of the Exterior of Your Home: If you make any changes to the exterior of your home, be sure to check Lakeport Standards, and if none exists, you should read the relevant RA Guideline. Links to Lakeport and RA architectural requirements, the DRB application, discussion of RA’s counter-intuitive party-wall rules, and resources for replacement trees (required by RA if you remove a tree) and landscaping are all available in Section A at https://www.lakeportcluster.org/p/documents.html

Maintenance Resources: Be sure to review the Preventive Maintenance Checklist for Spring in this issue for smaller maintenance projects that could save you major expenses and headaches in the future. And remember that RA has arranged with Sherwin-Williams for a discount of 30% to 40% off paints and stains (exterior and interior) and 15% off paint supplies at Sherwin-Williams store #3385, located at 495A Elden Street in Herndon (703-471-1484). If you want to take advantage of the discount, the code is 2214-8496-7.

Washington Consumer Checkbook is a publication, now available online (www.checkbook.org), that offers a huge user-friendly database of reviews of many types of local service providers, along with high-quality advice about how to approach selecting and working with them.

You Must Replace Any Tree You Remove: If you recently removed a tree (dead or alive) on your property, remember that Reston Association requires that you replace it with another tree. RA has several resources for finding a replacement tree: See the lists of recommended small trees at https://drive.google.com/file/d/1a1epMYHN4gx8EB7l_K68ewk8bZnXnh1-/view

and https://www.dropbox.com/sh/f4ch21s6x062qsc/AABzwoLgm7q7-HL-WcrWbmCOa/Native%20and%20Invasive%20Species?dl=0&preview=Trees+in+Reston.pdf&subfolder_nav_tracking=1.    

Party Walls: Although sometimes counterintuitive, the RA Deeds make the repair of any architectural element that falls on the property line between two houses (e.g., wall, trim, fence) a joint responsibility. If you aren’t sure whose responsibility it is to pay for the repair or replacement of a shared wall or trim, please see https://drive.google.com/file/d/0BxSpjzCTaI6Jd0xnbEZEcEhLT3NiWjRKODNlZDBtTWdRdTBJ/view for information relating to party walls. 

Drive Slowly: With the warmer weather, neighborhood children are outside even more now, playing on sidewalks and in the streets. Please remember to drive slowly and keep your eyes out for children (and other pedestrians), who are not always thinking first and foremost about their own safety.

Improve Lighting in Lakeport: Even though it is staying light later and becoming light earlier, please leave your outdoor lights on at night. A well-lit community is one of the most basic measures we can take to ensure the safety of our residents and the security of our property. One way to further the goal of safe lighting is for residents to leave their exterior lights on at night, especially those in end units with post lights, which according to long-time Lakeport residents used to be standard practice. This is of course voluntary, but doing this one small thing is a gracious contribution to the overall safety and attractiveness of our community. 

Lock your cars: If you park your car outside, be sure to lock it and do not leave valuables visible, especially at night. Also remind guests to do the same. 

Report Suspicious Activity: If you see suspicious activity, don’t confront anybody but instead call the Fairfax County Police non-emergency number, 703-691-2131 (use this number also to report vandalism or any other crime that has already occurred). The police request that even if you just have a “gut feeling” something is wrong, you notify them with as many details as possible. It is helpful if you can also take photos unobtrusively. Police will be dispatched (or you may be able to provide a report over the phone). Also notify Lakeport’s Neighborhood Watch coordinator James Pan at jpamco@gmail.com. Please pay special attention to suspicious activity or sounds near the Lakeport dock, in the woods, or at night

Help Keep Our Community Clean and Beautiful: Please contribute to the appearance of our community by picking up trash anywhere you see it while you’re out walking and enjoying nature in Lakeport (and elsewhere).

Geese: We continue to experience problems with goose poop on our dock. Please don’t feed the geese (not only does this attract them, it’s not healthy for them), but do feel free to shoo them off the dock (just be sure not to harm them or allow them to attack you—we just want to make their time on our dock unpleasant enough that they will choose to hang out somewhere else!). 

Never Again Be Late Paying Your Quarterly Assessment: If you’ve been contacted by the Board for not paying your assessment as the end of the month nears (or even if you haven’t), please consider paying your quarterly assessments by direct debit through your bank instead of mailing a check or paying on TownSq (which incurs an extra fee). Doing so means that you never have to worry about incurring late fees because you forgot to make the payment (currently $25 plus the charge from SCS for sending the letter). Alternatively, you can pay the entire assessment at the beginning of the year. Either approach means the Board doesn’t have to spend time contacting you or pay SCS for mailing quarterly statements to owners who have not set up direct debit or prepaid (the cost to Lakeport last year was around $540). A third option for avoiding late fees (but you’ll still get a quarterly statement) is to use your bank’s electronic bill-pay option to set up recurring checks. For information about any of these three options and for mailing checks, go to https://www.lakeportcluster.org/p/hoa-fee-payments-lakeport-cluster-hoa.html

Update Your Contact Information: Please go to the Lakeport Directory https://drive.google.com/file/d/1lQmLFN8lmLdfoXajXB-j2ad5whVDsmO9/view) and check the contact information listed there for you. If a correction is needed, either 1) send an email to webmaster@lakeportcluster.org and copy along@scs-management.com or 2) fill out the form at https://docs.google.com/forms/d/e/1FAIpQLSfFILfWGBoWIgWlBPSQmIKj4kIX0kPA7XsRjnsaOsNXuvVSkw/viewform. If your home has renters, please ask them to fill out the form to be listed in the directory. Remember also that if you need to contact a neighbor or just remember someone’s name you have forgotten, you can always check this directory.

Ripples Recipe — Macadamia Coconut Cacao Nib Brittle

By Marcy Foster

Macadamia coconut cacao nib brittle—it's a mouthful to say, but it’s delicious to eat. It’s crunchy, nutty, and chocolatey—and made with only seven ingredients, with cacao nibs the star. They're less refined versions of the cocoa used in most chocolate, so more of their nutrients are retained, including antioxidants shown to improve cognitive function, reduce the risk of heart disease, and increase longevity. They're available in healthier food stores.

Ingredients

  • 1 cup coarsely chopped macadamia nuts
  • ½ cup dried, unsweetened coconut flakes (not shredded) 
  • ¼ cup cacao nibs
  • 2 tablespoons coconut sugar
  • Pinch sea salt
  • 2 tablespoons extra-virgin coconut oil
  • ½ cup maple syrup

Instructions

  1. Preheat oven to 325°F. Line a baking sheet with parchment paper.
  2. In a medium bowl, combine the nuts, coconut flakes, cacao nibs, sugar, and salt.
  3. In a small pan, combine the oil and maple syrup. Simmer over medium heat until the ingredients are combined, about three minutes, stirring continuously until the edges bubble.
  4. Pour the oil/syrup mixture over the nut mixture. Stir thoroughly and then pour the mixture onto the baking sheet. Smooth it out with the back of a spoon to spread it as evenly as possible.
  5. Bake for 15 minutes, checking to be sure it doesn't overcook. Place the baking sheet in the refrigerator until cool.
  6. Remove from the refrigerator and break the brittle into pieces. Serve immediately.
  7. To store, place wax paper in between layers of brittle in an airtight container and keep in a cool, dry place for up to two weeks
MAKES 6 SERVINGS


Winter 2022 Issue of Ripples


From the Editor – Stephen Sapp

Lakeport News 

News from Outside Lakeport

Helpful Information





















Landscape Committee

By Mary Sapp

As you are probably aware, Lakeport’s hilly topography poses challenges for our community. For example, a number of owners have installed steps on their property to help them more safely access their docks and back patios. But the slopes, especially the steep grades, create another problem for Lakeport properties and Lake Thoreau: storm-water runoff that leads to mud, erosion, and streams of dirty water that flow into storm drains that all empty into our lake and into the Chesapeake Bay watershed. In fact, some areas of Lakeport are designated as part of the Chesapeake Bay Resource Protection Area (RPA)—you can find links to maps and other information about the RPA  https://www.fairfaxcounty.gov/landdevelopment/faqs-resource-protection-areas to see if part of your property is included and what that means for you. 

To try to protect the quality of its waters, the Commonwealth of Virginia encourages property owners to engage in best practices to reduce the quantity of stormwater that leaves your property and to improve the quality. As an incentive, the Northern Virginia Soil & Water Conservation District (SWCD) offers grants for approved projects proposed by HOAs, civic organizations, religious institutions, and individual property owners. In 2020 Lakeport qualified for two grants to install a rain garden and conservation landscaping between 1952 and 1954 Lakeport Way. The rain garden has successfully captured runoff from four downspouts, but unfortunately surface-level runoff is still causing erosion between 11110 and 11112 Lakespray and mud between 1952 and 1954 even after the owners paid to install rock steps so they could safely reach their back patios. 

We consulted with the contractor for our rain garden and the NoVA SWCD, who determined that most of the current runoff (which creates an obviously flowing stream during a heavy rain) is from the grassy area between 11100 and 11112 Lakespray. They proposed the installation of five “infiltration steps” on the four-foot strip of common property between these two homes to capture and temporarily store the surface water before infiltrating it into the soil over several days based on a design prepared by a Soil Scientist at NoVA SWCD. The five 3.5’ W x 4’ L steps (three located on the steepest part of the hill and another two near the bottom, as shown in the photo rendering to the right) will help terrace the area to slow down the water, but the real value is the 3’x3’ reservoirs filled with rocks beneath the steps (the top three will be 20” deep and the bottom two 31” deep). 

In addition to controlling and minimizing runoff and conserving that water within the landscape, the infiltration steps will make it safer for contractors and anyone else going down that hill, although its use as a route to Lakeport Way (or for sledding/skiing 😊) is discouraged. The placement of these steps will also encourage anyone walking there to do so on common property rather than on private property. 

Installation of the steps is contingent on final approval by RA’s Design Review Board and approval of a $3,500 grant from NoVA SWCD that would cover most of the cost.

Note that if you have stormwater issues, you might want to investigate applying for your own grant from NoVA SWCD to fund one of their best practices (e.g., a rain barrel, conservation landscaping, or a dry well). See https://vaswcd.org/vcap for more details and links to eligible practices.

From the Editor

By Stephen Sapp

The past few weeks have reminded me of how blessed we are to live in a wonderful community like Lakeport and Reston. Mary and I have been keeping our “granddog” Hazel while her family has been having some major renovations done on their home, and I have been spending quite a bit of time walking with her around Lakeport and the Lake Thoreau and Lake Audubon area. This extended time outdoors has helped me appreciate yet again how special our location is. The recent snows, despite some of the issues they may have caused, have highlighted the  beauty of our community, as shown in the pictures of Lakeport in the snow in this newsletter (Hazel shares my assessment, by the way, as the photo above illustrates!). I hope you too are able to get out and appreciate the ever-changing splendor all around us (and we were reminded of how quickly our surroundings can change when it was warm enough to take Hazel out on our boat just the afternoon before our first major snowstorm hit).

Please read through this issue of Ripples for interesting and helpful information, and if you have comments and/or would like to submit an item for our upcoming Spring issue, feel free to email me at ssapp@miami.edu.



Message from Lakeport President

By Chuck Foster

I can’t say being your rookie Board president has been boring. As my perpetually optimistic father used to say after both triumphs and setbacks, “I’m learning something new every day!”

In December, the new Board hit the ground running. We approved a new budget, renewed the contracts of three service providers, and received approval from the Reston Association to significantly expand the options available to homeowners in our design standards. Then the snow started and Omicron came to town. As a result, over the last few weeks, I have spent most of my time engaging with our trash, recycling, and snow-plowing service providers and fielding various complaints from the community.    

Everyone knows that the pandemic has hammered small businesses and they have had to adapt in order to survive. However, the latest pressures in the form of rising prices, Omicron infections, bad weather, and staff shortages have been another major blow.

American Disposal Services (ADS) is a good example. They have been struggling with rising prices for tires, fuel, and higher wages for labor. In addition, the Omicron virus and the hot job market have resulted in staff shortages. Further, the pandemic has increased the volume of trash approximately 30 percent as people work from home and buy a lot of stuff online. And, add to the mix higher trash dumping fees from the county, fewer outlets for recyclable material, and, of course, the weather. You couldn’t script a better disaster scenario for ADS. But, to their credit, they continue to show up and do the best they can for Lakeport. Blade Runners (landscaping and snow removal) has had similar issues and, as you are aware, Ecoserve (glass recycling) has shown evidence of ceasing operations. 

One issue I have spent a good amount of time on is the late-night and early-morning noise that emanates from the rear lot of the Safeway store. For some of our residents this means lost sleep and general aggravation. The unacceptable noise has two origins: a store renovation project and ongoing operations. Fairfax County has a noise ordinance that prohibits specified noises between certain hours. In order to address this problem, one resident and I have spoken with multiple Safeway store managers and employees. In addition, I have spoken with the store director and the operations manager for Chevy Chase Land, which owns the property. To date, the relief we have requested has not come. On January 20, I finally got to speak with the district manager responsible for our store and he pledged to address the problem. Sometimes the squeaky wheel has to turn a number of times before being heard. I am hopeful that, this time, we will get some relief.    

Let me end on a positive note. Last year, when preparing the budget for 2022, the Board decided to increase funding for snow removal.

Architectural Standards

By Mary Sapp

Lights: The post light for one of our owners broke shortly before Christmas, but unfortunately the post light specified in our standard (Forecast by Lightolier) is no longer available. An application is currently being reviewed by RA’s Design Review Board to add the Kichler Camden as an alternative (as well as the almost identical Latitude Run Millbourne). See the proposed new standard below, which also reflects the decision made by the DRB in late fall that allows security lights on the front of homes (the only time they have allowed security lights in that location). 

Last month Reston approved updates to two of Lakeport’s Architectural Standards that expand colors and products, resulting in many more options available to owners that do not require the submission of applications to Reston Association’s Design Review Board (DRB). 

  • Windows: In December the DRB approved an updated Window Standard that adds three more brands/materials and quadruples the number of pre-approved colors for window-palette combinations not requiring a DRB application. See https://drive.google.com/file/d/1AOti43w7zbs9nqHP8kLMoorrICDZPpCr/view.  
  • Decks: In December the DRB also approved an updated Deck Standard that increases by 75% the number of pre-approved colors that can be used to obtain very close matches for composites (any brand), paints, and stains without needing to file a DRB application. As before, no application is needed if the deck is just being repaired. See https://drive.google.com/file/d/1ZtuXkrUHLeS5KuwXnykloCqApevRDsFs/view 


Lakeport Cluster Association Standards

Exterior Lighting (Decorative and Security)

Reston Association’s Design Review Board approved the following revision to Lakeport Cluster standards on February ?, 2022.

Requirements for Decorative Lights 

    1. Wall lights shall be cylindrical (4.5”-5” diameter by 7”-7.25” tall), aluminum 120v light fixtures with a square mounting plate and be either bronze-colored, black, or gray. They shall be attached 7’ to 8’ above foot-level to outside wall/siding at the front and back entrances and/or beside garage doors. Applies to all units. Approved new lights: Kichler 9234BK (black) or 9234AZ (architectural bronze) or Progress P5674-31 (black), P5674-82 (gray), or P5674-20 (antique bronze). Existing fixtures that match this description but with a 4.75” diameter round mounting plate are also considered compliant if they are operating and in satisfactory condition.

    2. Non-recessed ceiling lights shall be the same cylindrical design as the wall lights except for being attached to the ceiling over the front door (either flush or with a mounting plate) instead of to a mounting plate on the wall and shall be 4.5”-5” diameter by 6.5”-7.25” tall, aluminum 120v light fixtures. Approved new lights: Progress P5774-31(black), P5774-82 (gray), and P5774-20 (antique bronze). Applies to all units listed in the history section below. 

    3. Recessed ceiling lights (over entry-door and under balcony/deck overhangs) shall be 5”-6” in diameter, flush lens, white trim. Applies to all units listed in the history section below. Approved lights are available from a variety of manufacturers. 

    4. Post light shall be 16”–17” high (including sleeve) and 8” – 9½” wide, deep bronze or anvil iron finish and etched white opal glass, with a 2¾” sleeve at the bottom of the fixture that fits over a black 3” diameter post. It shall have a photoelectric cell in the post or be controlled by a light switch and shall use a warm white (2700 - 3000 Kelvin) lamp. For all Phase 2 end units with house numbers attached to a brick wall, this post light shall be mounted on a 3” diameter, 11” tall post attached to the low brick wall near the house number so that the total height is approximately 26”–27”. With the exception of 1925 Lakeport Way, other Phase 2 end units that do not have numbers on brick walls (1907, 1915, 1917, 1923 and 1983 Lakeport Way) shall have the pole light mounted on a 48”–54” high free-standing post next to the front entrance. Approved lights: Forecast by Lightolier # F8494-68 and Camden by Kichler post lamp (or alternatively the very similar but ½” shorter Millbourne Iron 1 by Latitude Run). 




All existing exterior lights must be replaced with an approved light listed in this standard. If an approved light is discontinued or unavailable, the standard will need to be updated to identify a new option.

Requirements for Security Lights 

Security lighting should be selected and located to illuminate the owner’s property while minimizing glare onto neighboring properties, streets, or pedestrian walkways. The design, location, direction, and type of light bulb should reflect this goal. 

  • Fixture: Security lighting can be achieved least obtrusively by connecting a motion detector to an existing decorative exterior light (as described above). Alternatively, it may be a typical residential floodlight (but not a commercial wall pack or “box light,” spotlight, or sodium vapor light). A security light fixture should not be installed as a replacement for one of the decorative exterior lights described above. The color should be a close match to the trim or siding at the mounting location.
  • Shielding: The bulb must be “shielded” by the fixture (i.e., covered on the top and sides to ensure light goes down rather than up or horizontally) and/or by the deck/balcony under which it is attached. In addition, it must be directed down so that the beam does not reach adjacent property (either a neighbor’s or common property) and to minimize the impact of any glare on neighboring properties. If the property is uphill from other homes or the fixture is on the front of a home, especially if there is a sidewalk, it is even more important that the light be aimed so the area being directly lit is limited to inside the owner’s property line. 
  • Light bulb: The bulb must be LED, must not exceed 1000 lumens, and must not exceed 3000 Kelvin (i.e., warm or soft white rather than cool or bright white). LED bulbs that are rated as suitable for wet locations and enclosed fixtures are recommended to maximize the lifespan of the light bulb. 
  • Location:  Security lights located on the front elevation must be installed no higher than the first story plane level of the house inconspicuously under the balcony eave or garage eave dependent upon the home design. Security lights on the side or rear elevation must be installed inconspicuously under eaves or balcony or mounted through the wall. 
  • Power: Lights should be solar-powered, battery-operated, or “hard wired” so that no wiring or conduit is visible.
  • Number: A maximum of one single-headed or one double-headed security light can be installed on any one elevation (front, rear, or side).
  • No new ground-mounted or tree-mounted security floodlights are allowed.
  • Motion sensor: A motion sensor is required so that lights do not burn constantly.

All existing security lights must be brought into conformance with these standards when replaced.

RA Design Review Approval: No approval is required if these standards are followed exactly. Additional security or landscape lighting is restricted and may require Reston DRB approval.


THE FOLLOWING INFORMATION IS NOT PART OF THE STANDARD

IT IS PROVIDED TO ASSIST THE HOMEOWNER

History of Change to Standard / Current Situation: Original construction provided each house with standard decorative lighting (multiple standards applied to most units). The lighting standard was first documented and approved on April 18, 2005. The first revision was approved May 29, 2007. A second revision was approved September 7, 2021, when standards for security lights were added.

Wall light: Phase 1 homes originally had a white 5” x 5” square x 9” tall metal fixture mounted over the main entrance and white, 4.5” x 4.5” square x 9.5” tall plastic wall-mounted fixtures at other front and rear deck locations. All Phase 2 construction had cylindrical lights with specifications described above, except with round mounting plates instead of square plates. The standard approved in 2005 specified that all wall fixtures should be cylindrical lights with specifications described in the current standard, except with round rather than square mounting plates, and owners of Phase 1 homes were given until December 31, 2008, to replace their original wall fixtures with wall-light design used at that time for Phase 2 homes. The 2007 revision to the light standard specified that wall lights be as described above except it allowed only square mounting brackets and only the bronze color. 

Non-recessed cylindrical ceiling light: Cylindrical lights identical to wall lights were mounted to the overhang above the front entrances at 1909-1913, 1919, 1921, 1927, 1929, 1935, 1937, 1951, 1953, 1955, 1957, 1959, 1987, 1989, 1991, 1997, 1999, and 2001 Lakeport Way and 11100-11110 and 11114-11120 Lakespray Way. The 2007 revision to the light standard kept the description of the non-recessed ceiling light the same but required that it be attached flush to the ceiling instead of via a mounting plate that had been used originally. 

Recessed ceiling lights: One or more recessed lights matching the description in the current standard were used in entry-door ceilings and/or deck overhangs at 1915, 1917, 1923-1926, 1928, 1930-1932, 1934, 1936, 1938, 1940, 1942, 1954, 1956, 1958, 1960, 1962, 1964, 1966, 1971, 1973, 1985, 1993, and 1995 Lakeport Way and 11112 and 11121-11129 Lakespray Way. No changes have been made to the requirements for this type of light.

No ceiling lights: Only wall-mounted cylindrical lights (no lights in ceiling or overhangs) at 1907, 1933, 1939, 1944-1950, 1952, 1963, 1965, 1967, 1969, 1975-1983, and 2003 Lakeport Way and 11122 Lakespray Way. 

Post lights: The original pole light was an American Lantern #4881 clear globe with a rounded-square profile (total fixture: 11.5” tall and 8” diameter) on a 3” diameter 12” tall pole. It is no longer manufactured. The standard approved in 2005 specified that all pole lights should be replaced with the pole lights described in the current standard and gave owners of homes with pole lights until December 31, 2008, to replace their original pole lights with the new ones. These lights were used at all end units of Phase 2 homes except 1925 Lakeport Way. The posts for these lights were attached to a low brick wall with the house number at 1924, 1930, 1931,1932, 1933, 1939, 1942, 1954, 1963, 1966, 1971, 1973, 1985, 1993, 1995, and 2003 Lakeport Way, and at 11100, 11110, 11112, 11121, 11122 and 11129 Lakespray Way. Pole lights were mounted on free-standing posts in front of 1907, 1915, 1917, 1923 and 1983 Lakeport Way. In February 2022, because the Forecast by Lightolier became unavailable, the Kichler Camden and the almost identical Latitude Run Millbourne were added as approved alternatives. 

Possible Suppliers

Note: This list should be considered a starting point for homeowners replacing outside lighting. No endorsement of any supplier is intended.