News and notes from Reston (tm).

Monday, July 6, 2009

Flashback Monday: Reston's First Church


Even though the idea of a planned community with "town houses" in the middle of nowhere seemed a bit heretical at the time, the antidisestablismentarian types that decided to call the New Town home in the mid-1960s still hankered for that old-time religion.

Here is a nicely artsy picture of Reston's first place of worship, Redeemer Methodist Church -- which is what we think is now the UCC church on North Shore Drive near Lake Anne. Apparently their prayers were strong enough to create a mini-vortex near the right-hand side of the photo which looks remarkably like a hole punch.


  1. Short time reader and first time poster as a recent Restonian. Excellent blog and never stop bagging on the Macaroni Grill. I worked for that place in a former life and they are truly evil. Anyway, my point, according to the former owner of my townhome, it was the first Baptist Church before the current one was finished in the Reston Town Center. I feel a certain affinity knowing that my new home was a former place of worship. Now if I can only get Dwell magazine to worship there once my renovations are complete.

  2. Another flasback -- read the Dedication Issue of the Reston Newsletter, May 21, 1966. Makes you think...

    From Anne Simon...
    The Dedication of Reston, 1966

    "Childhood shows the man, as morning shows the day." And so it is with the young town Reston in the morning of its happening.

    Reston is sturdy. Belief in the human potential governs its every innovation. 20th Century man can flourish when the vitality of urban invention combines with the ancient heritage of fertile land. Here, a man looks at a tall tower and a tree against the sky and knows that both mark the place of his home.

    Reston is vigorous. Belief in the ferment between people and place is its strength. There is contentment and controversy in a town where each man matters. Here, people in ever-widening variety walk, work, watch a bird. They create their own life style, and by such creation make a valid community of men.

    Reston is buoyant. Belief in excellence is its absolute standard. Artistry in surroundings lifts the spirit, sparks the imagination. Planning is its tool. Here, children run free to delight in a bridge, a wooded path. Water glints against brick, music sounds in the village, and men know a sense of joy.

    Belief in people, in ferment among them and excellence around them, makes Reston sturdy, vigorous and buoyant. This is its promise. This is its dedication.

    by Anne W. Simon May, 1966

  3. And the mn's plan itself... anyone rmember typewriters -- I do...

  4. Reading the original plan is fascinating. 18 elementary schools, 5 middle schools and 2 high schools?

    Everyone will walk to the village centers? Would that include the people who are understandably afraid to walk the paths around Hunters Woods Shopping Center -- much less hang around there for social time?

    It sounds very much like the Disney "Future" rides that EPCOT forecast...


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