Henrico County VA

Parading through

The Christmas spirit was alive in Varina Dec. 13, as the Varina Toy Parade rolled along Osborne Turnpike (featuring Henrico Christmas Mother Becky Goshorn, above) to the Osborne Boat Landing, where hundreds of spectators then gathered to watch the James River Boat Parade of Lights. > Read more.

HCPS preschool program to expand in fall

Henrico County Public Schools will expand its preschool program for 4-year-olds next fall, thanks to new funding from the federal Preschool Expansion Grant.

The school system is one of 11 high-needs systems in Virginia that will share a total of $17.5 million in federal money, which will be dispersed in Virginia through the Virginia Preschool Initiative (VPI). Virginia was one of 18 states to receive a portion of $226 million in federal preschool grant dollars.

Henrico currently serves 774 preschool students in 43 classrooms at 22 elementary schools and the New Bridge Learning Center. The new funds will allow HCPS to add 10 preschool classes and serve 180 additional students, according to HCPS Director of Foundational Learning and Family Engagement Gail Jones. > Read more.
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Business in brief


Agents with Cushman & Wakefield | Thalhimer recently completed the following lease transactions: Phoenix Fitness and Martial Arts – leased 7,595 square feet in Deep Run Centre II at 3955-3979 Deep Rock Rd.; Acision, LLC – leased 3,248 square feet in Waterfront Plaza at 4401 Waterfront Dr.; The Weigh Station – leased 3,129 square feet in the Colonnade Building at 4050 Innslake Dr.; ALPS Insurance Agency, Inc. – leased 2,947 square feet in Interstate Center-Building B at 2112 W. Laburnum Ave.; Firehouse Subs – leased 2,440 square feet in 5215 Shoppes at 5215 W. Broad St.; and W. Moore – renewed its lease of 1,763 in Westerre III at 3900 Westerre Pkwy. > Read more.

Safe Harbor names new director

Safe Harbor has named Cathy Easter as its new executive director.

Easter will lead the Henrico organization's sexual and domestic violence prevention work throughout the Metro Richmond community. She was selected by the Board of Directors' Executive Search Committee to replace Kathleen Demro, who served as the Safe Harbor’s executive director for five years.

Board President Mary Catharine Ginn Kolbert said she is excited to have Easter as the next leader of Safe Harbor.
> Read more.

A visit to Santa Paws

Some local pet owners took the opportunity to introduce their pets to Santa Claus at Virginia Center Commons mall last month.

Above, Santa poses with four pugs and a cat named Macaroni (owned by Ruth Ferrer and Nancy and Gabriel Williams of Mechanicsville). > Read more.

Police charge Chesterfield man in 19 Henrico commercial burglaries

Suspect also charged in 20 other cases in Chesterfield and Richmond
UPDATE: DEC. 2, 11:14 A.M. – Henrico Police have arrested and charged a 50-year-old Chesterfield man in connection with 19 commercial burglaries in Henrico beginning in October. David Allen Williamson, of the 2300 block of Alfalfa Lane in Chesterfield, also faces charges in connection with 12 commercial burglaries in Richmond and eight in Chesterfield.

The incidents in Henrico showed that the method of entry was consistent, and similar items were taken from each location. When Richmond and Chesterfield began experiencing similar incidents, police in the two jurisdictions collaborated. > Read more.

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Community

Rotary donates to ‘Bright Beginnings’

The Sandston Rotary Club recently donated $1,000 to the Sandston YMCA for its Bright Beginnings program, which helps provide children in need with school supplies for the new school year. > Read more.

Author, child abuse survivor to speak at Henrico event

To help celebrate twenty years of service to advocating for abused and neglected children in Henrico County, Henrico Court Appointed Special Advocates, Inc. (CASA) will host an evening with bestselling author K.L. Randis on Tuesday, Aug. 26, from 5:30 p.m. to 7:30 p.m. at Belmont Recreation Center in Lakeside.

Randis is best known for her bestselling novel, Spilled Milk, which tells her painful – but ultimately triumphant – personal story of abuse and of child abuse prevention. The book is her first novel.

The event is free to the public, but seating is limited Reservations may be made by e-mailing .(JavaScript must be enabled to view this email address). Belmon Recreation Center is located at 1600 Hilliard Road. > Read more.

Philippines ambassador to the US visits Filipino Festival in Henrico


The Ambassador of the Philippines to the United States Jose L. Cuisia, Jr. attended the Ninth Annual Filipino Festival at Our Lady of Lourdes Church earlier this month. Cuisia (pictured above with festival performers) was welcomed by County Manager John Vithoulkas and Brookland District Supervisor Dick Glover (below) at the church, which is located in Lakeside.

While enjoying some of the cultural performances at the festival, the ambassador and his wife had a private lunch with Vithoulkas, Glover, Eldon Burton (an outreach representative from U.S. Senator Mark R. Warner’s Office) and Father James Begley, the pastor of OLL. > Read more.

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Entertainment

A ‘Life’ well lived

Animated ‘Book of Life’ overcomes average storyline with extraordinary presentation, details
“Beauty is only skin deep” applies all too well to The Book of Life. An animated feature from first-time director Jorge R. Gutierrez, The Book of Life spins a classic love triangle – two childhood friends, Manolo (Diego Luna) and Joaquin (Channing Tatum) both in love with Maria (Zoe Saldana).

Maria, in all honesty, is a little more interested in Manolo’s musical charms, but her father wants her to marry the boastful and militaristic Joaquin. And when two gods, La Muerte and Xibalba (Kate de Castillo and Ron Perlman, respectively), turn this little love triangle into a wager (as gods often do), Manolo’s quest for true love will take him through life, death, immortality and the underworlds of Mexican folklore.

Now, back to the “beauty” part – because as far as the visuals go, The Book of Life is the most extraordinary animated film to hit theaters this year. > Read more.

Weekend Top 10


The holiday season is underway and Lakeside Avenue has everything you need during its 10th annual Holly Jolly Christmas event! Shoppers will enjoy extended hours at several dozen shops and free trolley rides. Also this weekend, the 23rd annual Great American Indian Exposition & Pow-Wow. There will be over 200 American Indian dancers, singers, drummers, artists and crafters. In the mood for music? Check out The Gibson Brothers at UR and Susan Greenbaum at the Shady Grove Coffeehouse. For all our top picks this weekend, 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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