New and Coming Soon to Rio in Gaithersburg (October 2023)

Below is a list of businesses that have recently opened, or are coming soon to Gaithersburg’s Rio.
Now Open: Spirit Halloween

Spirit Halloween is now open at 30 Grand Corner Ave. This will be the only Montgomery County Spirit location for 2023.  New at Spirit this year will be a buy online/pickup in-store option, as well as delivery through DoorDash. A sneak peak of the Rio location can be seen below. During the Halloween season, Spirit operates over 1,400 stores in North America. The Spirit Halloween website is open year-round, offering its in-store products online. The store usually open 30-60 days prior to Halloween.

Coming Soon: Han Spot
Back in May we let you know that the owner of popular dim sum restaurants China Garden (Rockville) and Han Palace (Tysons, Woodley Park, Barracks Row) announced that she is bringing a new restaurant to Rio– taking over the space that was previously home to Union Jack’s until June 2020. It has now been confirmed by Rio that the restaurant will be known as Han Spot. 

Chris Zhu made the announcement via social media in May, “Another milestone. New baby from Han Palace coming to Rio Gaithersburg. Next to AMC theater & Guapo’s 🤗🤗🤗.” One of Zhu’s other restaurants, Han Palace, offers an all-day dim sum menu. Scallops, shrimp, pork/crab dumplings, rice rolls, barbecue pork buns, lobster sticky rice, Han-style filet mignon, and Peking duck are included on the Han Palace menu.

Coming Soon: IKEA Gaithersburg: Plan & Order Point with Pick-Up
Earlier this year, IKEA announced plans to open new format IKEA stores in Fairfax, Virginia (now open), and Gaithersburg, Maryland, in fall 2023.  Signage is now up at the Gaithersburg location located at 101 Boardwalk Place Ste 102– the former home of Charming Charlie. This new customer meeting point, called a Plan & order point with Pick-up, will  include home furnishing inspiration and personalized interior design planning, with the addition of an IKEA Pick-up point, allowing customers to pick up their purchases made online or purchased at either Plan & order point location. Purchases made at IKEA Fairfax and Gaithersburg can also be arranged to be conveniently transported to a customer’s home or to another convenient point of delivery.

Coming Soon: Copper Canyon Dining Pier on the Lake
In April we let you know that Copper Canyon Grill is requesting approval for a 1,012 square foot covered dining pier to be located on the RIO Lake. The restaurant submitted its final site plan back in July and the planning commission approved it unanimously in September. Renderings of what the pier will look like can be seen below.

Access to the outdoor dining area/pier will be via two gangways attached to the existing boardwalk. The new structure projects 10’-2” from the boardwalk and will be 12 feet tall from the finished floor. Gaithersburg Planning Staff supports the proposal for a dining pier in the Rio Washingtonian Lake, finding it in compliance with the approved sketch plan and Schematic Development Plan SDP- 9462-2023. “The dining pier will provide additional outdoor seating for Copper Canyon and will enhance the use of lake. There remains adequate parking for the proposed commercial addition and all applicable development standards have been met.” No timeframe for the pier has been announced.

Coming Soon: Sportrock Climbing Center
Sportrock Climbing Centers will be opening in the space that was previously occupied by Sport & Health. Sportrock opened the first commercial climbing gym in the DC metro area approximately 28 years ago in 1994, when it opened its Rockville. That location closed in 2006, but Sportrock has continued to operate successfully in Alexandria, Virginia. Now, it’s bringing rock climbing back to Rio, where many remember the much smaller walls that were a part of Sportland in the 90s. The Sportrock founders met while training together at Zich’s (pronounced Zeke’s) Garage, a handmade climbing gym in Washington, DC. When Zich was 19 he was looking for a place to train in the wintertime. Zich convinced his supportive parents to let me build a DIY climbing space in their freestanding car garage. When the demand outgrew the space, Sportrock founders broke off and formed Sportrock’s first location in Rockville (14708 Southlawn Ln) so they would continue to have a place to climb and train together. An opening date is not yet available.


Sportrock is aiming for a late 2023 opening. Sportrock opened the first commercial climbing gym in the DC metro area approximately 28 years ago in 1994, when it opened its Rockville. That location closed in 2006, but Sportrock has continued to operate successfully in Alexandria, Virginia. Now, it’s bringing rock climbing back to Rio, where many remember the much smaller walls that were a part of Sportland in the 90s. #MoCo #RioLakefront #Gaithersburg

♬ Ain’t No Mountain High Enough – Marvin Gaye & Tammi Terrell

Coming Soon: Le Macaron
Permanent signage is up at Le Macaron at 7 Grand Corner Ave (next to BurgerFi). The shop is expected to open in the coming months, and is owned by MoCo residents Natalia Mejia and Camilo Beltran. Le Macaron, a Florida-based pastry shop now has more than 70 locations across the US, with more locations on the way as franchisees are opening in shopping centers like Rio, food trucks, and kiosks in malls. Menu items at the upcoming Rio location will include macarons (available in 20 flavors), gourmet chocolates, French gelato, specialty European style coffees, classic French pastries, and homemade candies.

Taste of Rio
The first ‘Taste of Rio’ will take place on Sunday, October 15th from 2:00 pm – 6:00 pm. The “foodie celebration” will take place on the lakefront featuring bites from rio restaurants, live music, craft cocktails and more. Participating restaurants include: AMC, Auntie Anne’s/Cinnabon, BurgerFi, California Pizza Kitchen, Charley Prime, Chipotle, Copper Canyon Grill, Corner Bakery, Dave & Buster’s, Donutchew, Fantasticks,, Guapo’s, Han Spot, Kung Fu Tea, Lanzhou Pull Noodle, Le Macaron, Miss Toya’s Southern Kitchen, Muse Paint Bar, Nando’s Peri-Peri, Poki DC, Potbelly, Silver Diner, Starbucks, The Bench, True Food Kitchen, Uncle Julio’s, and Yard House.

Recently Opened:


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Washington City Paper is hosting its annual Best of D.C. contest -- and Well-Paid Maids is eyeing the Best Maid Service category. If you missed it: Well-Paid Maids has secured first place for the past three years. Can you help us snag gold again? Simply go to the ballot and write in your vote for the best maid service. In case you need a refresher before you vote, Well-Paid Maids is the only certified living-wage cleaning company in the D.C. area. We pay our cleaners, who are W-2 employees, at least $24 an hour and offer benefits like insurance, 24 paid days off per year and more. Voting is open until June 10 at 5 p.m., and the winner will be announced July 18. (We'll keep you posted!) Thank you for your support -- and if you still haven't booked a spring cleaning yet, now is the time!

Submit your own Announcement here.

Oak Chapel is excited that Priority Partners Managed Care Organization (PPMCO) in partnership with Johns Hopkins HealthCare (JHHC) have selected the Oak Chapel Hub as the location for the first mini-food pantry/mini library in Montgomery County. Please join us for the cupboard unveiling on Saturday, May 18th, at 10 AM (rain or shine). This is scheduled to be an outdoor event. If there is inclement weather, the event will be held in the multi-purpose room of the main church building (Hub distribution location). The cupboard will be fully stocked and ready for the community to take what they need and leave what they can. It is a privilege to be able to continue to serve the 20906 community.

Fighting food insecurity, feeding families.

Submit your own Announcement here.

Movie being filmed in McLean, VA, needs your support

A local community movie is filming in our area in June and needs contributions!

Local actors, teens, teachers, housewives, and retired residences are trying to make this film happen but we need your help.

This is an educational short story about teens learning how to navigate when they don't feel accepted by their friends and what to do to find acceptance. Yet this film isn't just for teens. In your life have you ever felt like you weren't accepted??

Come be a part of the audience for this film! Invite your friends. Be a part of this film being produced right here in our area.

This is a social impact film that will show locally and internationally at film festivals in 2025 and also at colleges.

More information can be found here. DONATE TODAY:

This is a not-for-profit film and donations are tax-deductible.

Free Community Father-Daughter Dance

Fathers and father figures, create unforgettable memories with your daughter at our free community father-daughter dance on June 1st, from 6-8 pm. Hosted outdoors at Olney Baptist Church. This event offers a delightful outdoor experience complete with a DJ spinning tunes, interactive games, a charming photo booth, delicious treats, and exciting raffle prizes. Fathers/father figures and daughters of all ages are warmly welcomed to share in this special evening together. Join us for an evening of joy, laughter, and cherished moments!

In the spirit of giving back to our community, we are partnering with Quest to Feed Montgomery to make a meaningful difference in the lives of those in need. We kindly ask each attendee to bring along a non-perishable food item to donate during the event. Every contribution, no matter how small, will go a long way in supporting families facing food insecurity in our area.


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