Wednesday, April 30, 2008

Visitor Blog Entry

A colleague of a Crystal City BID staff member recently sent over this wonderful excerpt from a personal blog post that just had to be shared! It encapsaltes everything the Crystal Flight project was intended to bring to the streets of Crystal City.

Excerpt from Anonymous Blog Post
Buggy plane
After having dinner out [a rare treat], we happened upon this piece of public art. A neighborhood in Arlington is near the airport so they have all this (sic) planes on display that have been decorated by various artists. This plane, sponsored by the U.S. Air Force, is called "Fly Zone" by Jessica Van Brakle. It features these rather large flies on it. Vaughan thought it was pretty cool!
Hey! Look there are more flies over here!
Yep, there is a fly!
He got one last close look at a fly before we went home, he got a bath and went to bed. Whew! --

Monday, April 21, 2008

Crystal Flight In the News - Air & Space

Check out the latest mention of Crystal Flight in the Smithsonian's Air & Space magazine! They put together a great article after multiple site visits photographing sessions in the studio and on the street!

Monday, April 14, 2008

Crystal Block - A Celebration of Art & Air

The second annual Crystal Block party was a stunning success! Despite looming rain clouds and unseasonably cool temperatures, the festivities of Crystal Block, which included musical acts Wicked Jezabel, Folsom Prisoners, and the Reflex, children's moon bounces and slides, cotton candy, popcorn, and tons of give-aways from area businesses, attracted several thousand visitors!

In addition to the three planes located in the area - Freddie's Flotsam & Jetsam, CC Sports Pub's Bounce Off and BB&T's Pennies from Heaven - 23rd Street was the temporary home for Chalk It Up and Graffiti Plane. Graffiti Artist Kevin Irvin spent most of the 5-hours of the party painting his plane for Arlington Sports in the middle of the road! Interested Block Party attendees had the chance to see him in action and his design evolve! Chalk It Up offered children and adults the opportunity to put their own creative energies to work! Painted with chalkboard paint, the plane was certainly "Chalked Up" by the end of the day.

BB&T also treated visitors to their both with a contest using their plane as inspiration. Can you guess how many pennies (or how much money) is actually on the BB&T plane, Pennies from Heaven?

Thursday, April 10, 2008

The Planes Have Landed!

In case you have not noticed, the completed Crystal Flight Airplanes have "landed" all around Crystal City! JK Moving & Storage sent a Flat Bed Truck, a fork Lift, a box truck, and plenty of man power to get all 50 planes placed at their designated location.

The task was quite an event as eleven planes could be loaded directly onto the flatbed before it needed to be unloaded. It was certainly a sight to see the trailer traveling down the roads of Crystal City at about 5 MPH with dozens of on-lookers with smiling faces, cameras, and camera phones all pointed towards the spectacle! Many asked questions and expressed their delight at the arrivals, but nothing outdid the reaction of the Bright Horizon children who responded to a honk from the truck driver by rushing the window! Jaws dropped at hands waved as they saw the very plane they worked on unloaded and placed directly in front of their window!

Be sure to stop by one of the area restauraunts for an official map, but you can get a sneak peak at the 4.5-mile "Flight Path" that will take you to all 50 planes by downloading this map.

Sunday, April 6, 2008

Crystal Flight Artists Complete!

It has been a busy few final weeks in the Crystal Flight Artist's Studio. The Crystal Flight artists have been striving to compelte the designs they proposed nearly four months ago and began implementing in January. Only four planes remain to be completed - Arlington Sports' Graffiti plane which will be painted by talented graffiti artist, Kevin Irvin at Crystal Block and the three planes that make up Solar Sorcery, the three planes sponsored by the Consumer Electronics Association (CEA) and being completed by Butch Anthony.

After being compelted, the planes were treated with a Clear Coat application to protect the paint from the damaging and color-depleting sun's UV rays as well as a protection against vandalism. The Crystal City BID would like to thank Byron Peck and City Arts for agreeing to assist with the application of the coating on all of the planes.

Be ready this week to see the planes landing all over Crystal City courtesy of our Crystal Flight partner, JK Moving & Storage! Be certain to stop by Crystal Block along Restaurant Row on 23rd Street between S. Fern and S. Eads Streets. You can pick up a "Flight Plan" showing all of the plane locations throughout Crystal City at local restaurants and stores throughout the area.

Saturday, April 5, 2008

Crystal Flight In the News!

This week's Washington Business Journal included an article about Crystal Flight! Read all about it here: WBJ Article

Friday, April 4, 2008

Artist Spotlight - Byron Peck

Building on its participation in the first annual Vintage Crystal - A Taste of Wine & Jazz, the Duke Ellington Jazz Festival procured local artist Byron Peck to paint the Crystal Flight plane it sponsored. "Mood Indigo's" artistic concept involves gradiated transitions of colors and abstract designs intermixed with depictions of Duke Ellington on opposite sides of the plane.

About Byron
Over the last twenty-five years PeckStudios and, more recently its non-profit partner City Arts, have been commissioned to create over 80 murals, mosaics, and other public artworks. The majority of our past public artworks are site-specific designs that are inspired by the unique environment for which they were created. Many have been created with input and participation from the communities in which the artworks are located. Our studio's approach to public art is to maximize the artwork's relevance to the architectural and natural environment of the site, in addition to local history, culture, and purpose of site.

About Duke Ellington Jazz Festival
The Duke Ellington Jazz Festival (DEJF) is an annual celebration that honors musical genius and native Washingtonian Edward Kennedy “Duke” Ellington. Each year, tens of thousands of music lovers come together in the nation’s capital to share in the city’s rich Jazz history, to see local and world renowned Jazz artists and to pay tribute to legendary Jazz greats. The festival features more than 100 performances and programs in 35 venues citywide. Its impressive mix of local, national and international Jazz artists meets the diverse interests of Jazz aficionados and families from Washington, DC, and around the country and world. DEJF is a project of Festivals DC, Ltd. a non-profit educational organization.

The fourth Duke Ellington Jazz Festival will be held October 1 – 7, 2008 throughout Washington, DC. Go to to join the festival’s mailing list and receive periodic updates and schedules.

Thursday, April 3, 2008

The Flight to Brighter Horizons

The children of Bright Horizons added their artistic input to the Crystal Flight program last week. With help from JK Moving & Storage who helped transport the plane to and from the temporary space provided by Vornado / CES, the three groups of children cooperated to create a truly unique and special plane!

Led by Bright Horizons Center Director Amiee Lacson, a group of the Center's younger toddlers painted the base, another older group painted the pedestal, and the oldest group painted the actual plane. The Bright Horizons' plane dubbed "The Flight to Brighter Horizons" will be located directly in front of the Center's Crystal City location at 2344 Crystal Drive.

Previous Posts about Bright Horizons

Kids & Community to Join the Fun

Crystal Flight In the News

Wednesday, April 2, 2008

Crystal Flight on the News!

Crystal Flight received some amazing PR this morning when Channel 9 news came out to do a live shot of the project on the morning news edition. Reporter Howard Bernstein toured the Crystal Flight Artist studio with CCBID President and CEO Angie Fox and interviewed Chuck Baxter (Flotsam & Jetsam for Freddies Beach Bar and Restaurant) and Christopher Kelley (Kong Returns for Gensler). A number of planes were specifically focused on by Howard including “Pennies from Heaven” (Courtney Stevens for BB&T), Barnstorming (Matt Wuerker for Politico), Fruit Flies (Pamela Marcon for the Crystal City BID), Chalk It Up (by the Crystal City BID), Crab Rock (Sandra Bacon for McCormick and Schmick’s), and several others!

Click here to see Howard Bernstein’s morning video blog.

[BID President and CEO with Channel 9 Reporter Howard Bernstein]

[BID President and CEO Angie Fox with rest of the BID team - Maurisa Potts, Marketing Director and Rob Mandle Operations Director]

Tuesday, April 1, 2008

Sponsor Spotlight - Cucina Vivace

Italy has influenced the cuisine of dozens of countries. That influence is reflected in the love so many have not only for Italian food, but for the comfort of the Italian dining experience. People see our shared history in every meal; making us all one family at the table. This cultural blending takes shape in “True Colors”, where the flags of five nations (Ethiopia, Romania, Croatia, US, and Nicaragua; representing the Cucina Vivace staff) blend into the predominant color scheme of the plane – the Italian flag.

About the Sponsor - Cucina Vivace

Welcome to Cucina Vivace, a trattoria and enoteca created by Chef Gordon Vivace. We take pride in offering you innovative, contemporary dishes born in the oldest traditions of Italian cooking. Variations on classic themes are created with the use of fresh, local ingredients, just as dishes have been created in Italy for centuries. We strive to bring you the heart of the Italian table, where recipes are uniquely crafted cook by cook with individual flair and become centerpieces in a social event. Our structure is a four course offering, though we encourage guests to share our antipasti and primi courses with no additional plate charges so almost any budget and appetite can enjoy our relaxing full dining experience. Our wine list is designed to bring you a preferred selection, representing the best Italy has to offer in a broad range of geographies while each uniquely complements the flavorful creations on our menu. We invite you to share an authentic four course dining experience with us, select a light meal, or just join us for coffee and dessert. Come as you are, from jeans to black tie. You can enjoy it all in a casual environment where one of the most revered Italian traditions continues – good food creates good friendships.

Website - Cucina Vivace

Artist Spotlight - Sandra Bacon

Crystal Flight's call for artists attracted a number of out-of-town artists. Completing the proposed designs for these artists can prove to be a struggle as artists have to plan travel, locate accommodations while in town, and complete the statue on an accelerated schedule.

Illinois artist Sandra Bacon was able to meet these challenges head on! Arriving in town and staying locally with her sister's boyfriends, Sandi arrived in the studio on Monday morning and had completed two statues - "From Earth to Space" for the
Gramercy at Metropolitan Park and "Crab Rock" for McCormick and Schmick's by Thursday evening. Impressive to say the least, but they also LOOK impressive!

From Earth to Space
This plane articulates the ascent from the core of the earth to the mysteries of the universe. With wonder at the beauty of the earth's inner core, through the atmoshere and into the cosmos, this painting refers to mystery, man's ascent to the heaves, the face that is presented to the heavens and the face that is presented to man on earth.

Crab Rock
This plane is a lighthearted look at the underwater world with the notion of "if crabs could fly". The artwork whimsically portrays the dichotomy between the weightlessness of underwater with the weightlessness of air.

About Sandi
Sandra Bacon is a versatile artist known nationally for the drawing/paintings and her public art. Her recent series of paintings, "Shattered Earth" has recently been shown at the Peppers Art Gallery in Redlands, California and at Deerpath Gallery in Lake Forest, Ill. She participated in last summer's Cool Globes exhibit in Chicago and her artwork was shown outside the Field Museum, at Navy Pier, at the United Nations(NY), and at the Chicago Department of the Environment.

Currently she is working on another Cool Globe for San Francisco, and an installation called "Lawn Games", at the Peggy Noteabaert Nature Museum (Chicago). Learn more about Sandra at her website by visiting her
Since teaming up in the early 1970s, Bill McCormick and Doug Schmick have established more than 50 restaurants and catering operations throughout the country - an extraordinary feat in a business with the highest attrition rate of any in the United States. The two men, very different yet surprisingly compatible, have established themselves as entrepreneurs with one collective vision, to run the nation's premier family of seafood restaurants.

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Part of the managerial talent McCormick tapped was Doug Schmick, a management trainee. The two formed a partnership in 1974, creating Traditional Concepts, a precursor to today's McCormick & Schmick's Seafood Restaurants. In 1979, they opened the original McCormick & Schmick's Seafood Restaurant in Portland, Ore. Since that time, the company has expanded to more than 50 restaurants across the country.
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