Henrico County VA
Henrico County Opinions

Cabin fever cures - and blessings

The wintry weather we’ve been having lately brings to mind a popular discussion topic at playgroups and mom forums back when I had young children: cabin fever – and how to cope with it.

In Pennsylvania, where we lived when my kids were small, there was no such thing as having too many ideas on how to liven up those long dreary days of indoor confinement. Not only were winters considerably longer and snowier than Richmond’s, but it was the 1980s, and there were fewer entertainment options around.

Getting schooled

Just when you thought Tim Tebow was finally out of the public spotlight, his name is back in it.

The Virginia Senate this week passed the "Tebow Bill," which would allow homeschooled students the opportunity to participate in public school extracurricular activities such as sports and band, among others. The House had previously endorsed the bill as well.

But the bill, much like the short NFL career of the former quarterback whose name it bears, is a disappointment.

Time to give spanking the boot


The fuss about Adrian Peterson has died down in the last month, but the case continues to bother me – and will for some time.

Like a lot of people, I was appalled to hear that Peterson, a Minnesota Vikings football player, whipped his four-year-old with a wooden switch to the point of injuring him.

But that is not what left the lingering bad taste in my mouth, and what discouraged me so much about the whole affair.

What really took me aback was how many people defended him, and how many advocate physical punishment of children.

Bored senseless

“Short Pump is too boring.”

Ever heard anyone say that?

Unless “b-o-r-i-n-g” is a new way to spell “congested,” I never had.

That is, until this week, when an email from Movoto (a website that exists) arrived in my inbox, alerting me to the stark reality that Short Pump is, in fact, the second most boring place in all of Virginia. Well, technically it tied for second with another bastion of boredom – Loudoun County’s South Riding, whose poor residents suffer through sad lives that involve sitting around all day counting how many racehorses and Aston Martins they own.

Announcing Henrico Restaurant Week

Henrico County is home to more than 500 restaurants, and it always seems as if a few new ones are opening each month. Included among their numbers are eateries for just about any taste – from Indian to French, Mexican to Greek, Japanese to Mediterranean – oh, and American too, along with plenty of options in between.

We have wine bars, brewpubs, neighborhood barbecue joints and elegant seafood restaurants. So isn’t it about time we celebrated the unique spots that make Henrico a feast for our tastebuds?

We thought so.

That’s why we’ve created the first-ever Henrico Restaurant Week, which will take place this spring (April 11-19, to be exact). Technically it’s more than a week, because we think you’ll need five weekdays and two full weekends to sufficiently stuff yourself and appreciate the offerings that abound right here in Henrico.

An actual holiday spirit


There are three kinds of people when it comes to Christmas – those who love it; Scrooges and Grinches; and those who fall somewhere in between.

The Christmas-lovers are the ones who hum Christmas jingles year round; who start trying out new holiday cookie recipes in July and beginscouring Christmas stores for decorations in August; who love to flip through holiday-themed magazines; who are thrilled when stores hang ornaments in September; who like to wear those jingly, blinking sweaters; and who savor Christmas shopping as their favorite sport. I have even heard of Christmas lovers who go shopping on Christmas Eve – despite having everything on their lists – just because they want to be part of the "hustle and bustle."

Clearly, these people are certifiable.

Mi-‘Steak’-en anger

A seemingly popular West End restaurant closed this week without warning, leaving its staff unexpectedly jobless and plenty of fingers pointed angrily at its owner.

This was the angle most commonly reported during coverage of the closing of Quaker Steak and Lube on West Broad Street, and while it’s certainly a difficult situation coming a few weeks before the holidays, there’s also another angle that doesn’t get coverage – perhaps because it doesn’t fit the broadcast narrative.

The common cry here is “How could someone do this to his employees – and just weeks before Christmas, no less?! How dare he!”

Letters to the Editor


School overcrowding causes foundation problems

Editor:

I believe the article “Henrico School Board weighs projects” by Citizen Editor Tom Lappas is important to those of Henrico County. I am originally from Henrico but I am currently a student at James Madison University. In my current sociology class, education is a big topic of discussion.

I am sure that it is common sense that a bad foundation of knowledge leads to later struggles with education; however, what some may not realize is overcrowding, like what is occurring at the four elementary schools in Brookland District, is one of the leading causes in a weak foundation. Based on research, boys struggle with verbal skills early on.

The immigration complication

When he was 14 years old, my grandfather left the tiny mountaintop village in Greece where he’d spent his entire existence and walked with several other teens and young men down the mountain – a journey that must have taken a week or more – to the nearest port to board a ship to Athens, then another to New York City.

He never returned to Greece, never saw his parents or three younger brothers again.

I never knew my grandfather, because he died when my dad was just 15, so I never had the chance to ask him: Why?

Why was he willing to make such a painstaking journey at such a young age, giving up everything that he knew in exchange for so many things that he did not. A language. A country. A history. A family.

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Community

Weekend Top 10


If your New Year’s resolution is to eat healthier, a film playing at the Byrd Theatre on Saturday may be just for you. Also taking place this weekend: several Henrico libraries are offering family-friendly events and the Latin Ballet of Virginia will perform “Legend of the Poinsettia” at CACGA. For all our top picks this weekend, click here! > Read more.

Weekend Top 10


The new year is off to a great start! Catch a movie at Twin Hickory Library or Henrico Theatre, laugh at the Funny Bone or enjoy a classical or country concert – all events taking place this weekend in Henrico! For all our top picks, click here! > Read more.

Weekend Top 10


Henrico residents have a variety of performances to choose from this weekend: The Rinard Family at Henrico Theatre, The Hot Seats at Ashland Coffee and Tea and shows at Mystery Dinner Playhouse, Swift Creek Mill Theatre and Children’s Theatre of Virginia. For all our top picks this weekend, click here! > Read more.

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Entertainment

Hardball, the hard way

‘Million Dollar Arm’ inspires with true story of Indian pitchers

Million Dollar Arm is your traditional sports flick. It’s based on a true story, so if you’re curious, have access to Google, or follow baseball to some degree, you may know Dinesh Patel and Rinku Singh. In 2008, they were victorious on the Indian reality series Million Dollar Arm and won the opportunity to train for a shot in the major leagues.

But Million Dollar Arm isn’t so much the story of Dinesh and Rinku as it is J.B. Bernstein (Jon Hamm), the scout who first came up with the idea to take baseball (or, at least, a baseball-themed reality show) to Southern Asia. Because this is a Disney pic, and that is the typical Disney sports formula. Consider Miracle and Remember the Titans, two incredible athletic stories that were less about the athletes, and more about the coaches – played by Kurt Russell and Denzel Washington, respectively. But that’s not such a bad thing, because Million Dollar Arm benefits from the endless charm of Mad Men star Hamm. > Read more.

Weekend Top 10


The Richmond Men’s Chorus will end their season with “The Music of Elton John” – tomorrow at The Cultural Arts Center at Glen Allen. There are concerts this weekend for bluegrass and Mozart fans too! An organization that really needs fans is the Special Olympics – you can volunteer to cheer at their summer games, taking place this weekend at the University of Richmond and other local venues. For all our top picks, click here! > Read more.

Restaurant watch

Find out how your favorite dining establishments fared during their most recent inspections by the Virginia Department of Health. > Read more.

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Calendar

Twin Hickory Library will host a used book sale from 9 a.m. to 4 p.m. March 27-28. Children’s books will be sold on Saturday only. Sales benefit the Friends of… Full text

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