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First Female to Head Major US Intelligence Agency

Letitia A. Long is being promoted to the director of the National Geospatial-Intelligence Agency today. There will be a ceremony at the agency’s high-tech campus in Springfield, VA. While the building is still not completely built, the entire NGA staff is expected to relocate to this building by fall of 2011.

Long was most recently second in command at the Defense Intelligence Agency and will now be the first woman ever to head a major US intelligence agency. She has held several senior management positions over her 32 years in the industry, including deputy director of Naval Intelligence and deputy undersecretary of defense for intelligence.

Come Solve an Architectural Mystery at Gunston Hall

Gunston Hall is calling all young detectives to help solve an 18th century mystery! Gunston Hall was once a 5,500 acre corn and tobacco plantation and home to George Mason IV. Plantation Sleuth Family Program: Architecture Antics will be both educational and fun. Children will find out about the building of the mansion, as well as uncover clues in the mansion, garden, school and kitchen yard. Families will get a child-friendly mansion tour and pre-reserved groups will received a guide for the plantation experience.

This mystery event is open for the rest of August on Tuesdays, Thursdays, and Saturdays from 9:30 a.m. to 3:30 p.m. Adults are $9, children between ages 6-12 are $6, children between ages 2-5 are $2, and family admission is $25. You can also reserve a Sleuth tour for a group of ten or more for $5 a child.

Come Experience Mason Neck State Park like Never Before

Belmont Bay and Kanes Creek Paddle Expeditions at Mason Neck State Park are a fun way to explore the natural diversity and history of the park, while having fun and getting exercise at the same time! There are kayak trips on Saturdays and Sundays from 9:00 a.m. to 11:30 a.m. and canoe trips available Saturday nights from 6:00 p.m. to 8:30 p.m.

Reservations are required for these paddle expeditions and the cost is $15 per person. Mason Neck State Park is located at 7301 High Point Road in Lorton. For more information and reservations you can call (703) 339-2385.

Lorton's Juried Photographic Competition Exhibition

The 2nd Annual Juried Photographic Competition Exhibition is being presented by The Workhouse Arts Center until August 15 in Gallery W-16. The exhibit includes photographic images submitted by both professional and amateur photographers. Each artist submitted up to 3 different photographs for the competition.

The artists are all at least 18 years old and the deadline for their submissions was June 12. An awards reception occurred on Sunday, July 25, but the exhibit is still open for public viewing on the second floor of the Gallery Building.

The gallery is open Wednesday through Saturday 11:00 a.m. to 7:00 p.m. and Sunday 12:00 p.m. to 5:00 p.m.

Fairfax County Residents Find Chemical Bombs in Mailboxes

Fairfax County Officials have reported at least eight homemade chemical bombs in mailboxes since May 2010. These bombs have shown up in Northern Virginia mailboxes and front yards in residential areas of Reston and West Springfield.

The chemical bombs are being made with chemicals such as baking soda and Drano and some of the explosives even contain shredded aluminum. While no one has been injured by the bombs, they could potentially cause serious harm to people, as well as damage property. The Fairfax County police and fire officials are working together to warn area residents and are looking into those individuals responsible. Many community residents believe that a group of local teens are responsible for the incidents.