A safer way across

Brook Road project to assist disabled residents

A project years in the making is beginning to make life easier for wheelchair-bound residents in Northern Henrico.

The Virginia Department of Transportation is completing a $2-million set of enhancements to the Brook Road corridor in front of St. Joseph's Villa and the Hollybrook Apartments, a community that is home to dozens of disabled residents. > Read more.

New conservation easement creates wooded buffer for Bryan Park

Five years ago, members of the Friends of Bryan Park were facing the apparently inevitable development of the Shirley subdivision in Henrico, adjacent to the forested section of the park near the Nature Center and Environmental Education Area.

As part of the Shirley subdivision, the land had been divided into 14 lots in 1924, but had remained mostly undisturbed through the decades. In 2012, however, developers proposed building 40 modular houses on roughly 6.5 acres, clear-cutting the forest there and creating a highly dense neighborhood tucked into a dead end. > Read more.

Meet the men running for governor


Virginia will elect a new governor this year.

The governor’s position is one of great power and influence, as the current officeholder, Terry McAuliffe, has demonstrated by breaking the record for most vetoes in Virginia history.

However, during the last gubernatorial race in 2014, the voter turnout was less than 42 percent, compared with 72 percent during last year’s presidential election. > Read more.
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Henrico County property transactions, Nov. 3-9


A sampling of property transactions in Henrico County Nov. 3-9, 2014 appears below:

514 Dale Street – $86,322, 1,073 SF (built in 1957), from Tracy M. Manoley to Federal National Mortgage Association.
1528 Young Street – $100,000, 1,484 SF (built in 1940), from Gwendolyn C. Wells to J&R Rent to Buy LLC.
2307 Nortonia Road – $106,100, 925 SF (built in 1956), from James F. Moore to C. Brown Properties LLC.
2704 Chariot Street – $131,973, 1,344 SF (built in 1988), from Vergyl L. Cabbagestalk to Federal National Mortgage Association.
23 Huntsman Road – $140,000, 1,042 SF (built in 1951), from William Lee and Sue P. Smith to Dallas Pitcock Anthony. > Read more.

Varina District meetings to highlight road projects, Virginia Capital Trail, new library

Varina District Supervisor Tyrone E. Nelson will hold two Community Conversations meetings in December to discuss various road initiatives, the Virginia Capital Trail and the planned Varina Area Library.

The meetings will be held at 7 p.m. Tuesday, Dec. 2 at Dorey Park Recreation Center, 2999 Darbytown Road, and at 1 p.m. Friday, Dec. 5 at Henrico Theatre, 305 E. Nile Mile Road. > Read more.

Student helps sprout ‘STEM’ growth


Disappointed by the fact that women are under-represented in STEM (science, technology, engineering and math) career fields – often because they have lacked other women in the disciplines to emulate – J.R. Tucker High School senior Sierra Semel was motivated to address the issue.

Semel, who is part of the Advanced College Academy specialty center at Tucker, became interested in engineering in the eighth grade and quickly began to realize her interest was a rarity amongst other girls her age. After completing a research paper on the lack of women in STEM fields for Robert Meister’s AP composition class, she decided to do something about it. > Read more.

Grapevine access opens

Bridge builders
River lovers gathered Nov. 6 to celebrate the grand opening of a new public access site at the Grapevine Bridge on the Upper Chickahominy River in Eastern Henrico.

Part of the larger Chickahominy Water Trail and the Captain John Smith Chesapeake National Historic Trail, the river segment will now be easily accessible at the Virginia Department of Transportation (VDOT) gravel parking lot adjacent to the Grapevine Bridge on North Airport Drive.

In addition to its historic significance as part of Captain John Smith's explorations and the nation's colonial beginnings, the Grapevine Bridge played an important role in the Civil War during the Battle of Seven Pines. > Read more.

McDonald’s operator wins national award

Freda Thornton, a local McDonald’s franchisee who owns five Henrico and Richmond locations, recently received the Ronald Award, the highest regional award that a franchisee can receive. Thornton is pictured, second from right, with (from left) Bianca Olivas, vice president and general manager of the company's Baltimore Washington region; Rodney Henry, Thornton’s son and local McDonald’s franchisee; and Doug Jubic, QSC vice president of the Baltimore Washington region).

The award is given to just one percent of McDonald's owners nationwide and is designed to honor a franchisee for outstanding service to the McDonald’s brand and local community. > Read more.

VIPs for a day

Wayman Swanson and his son, Nicholas, were among the “VIPs” who gathered at Shula's Steak House in Short Pump Nov. 5 for a reception celebrating the 25th anniversary of the restaurant chain.

Included in the festivities were opportunities to view a “25 Years of Shula's” commemorative video featuring the restaurant's founder, the legendary Baltimore Colts’ and Miami Dolphins’ coach Don Shula, and to hold a replica of the Vince Lombardi trophy that is presented to the NFL’s Super Bowl champion each year. > Read more.

Steward School gives interim head of school permanent title

UPDATE: NOV. 21, 2:15 P.M. – The Steward School today named Interim Head of School Dan Frank as the new head of school.

The Steward Board of Trustees and Head of School Search Committee conducted a national search but determined that the best candidate for the job was the one who already held it. The board and committee unanimously supported Frank's appointment.

“We are absolutely confident that we have selected the candidate who best fits the needs of our school community," Board Chair Maria Brent Jones said. "Dan is an exceptional leader who brings a passion for innovation and community, as well as a deep understanding of Steward, to this leadership role.”
> Read more.

Four Henrico firefighters earn Valor Awards


Four Henrico County firefighters were recognized at this year's Silver Anniversary celebration of the Valor Awards, an annual event celebrating the courage of the Richmond area's first responders.

Held Nov. 7 at the Greater Richmond Convention Center, the event was sponsored by the Retail Merchants Association and honored law enforcement officers, firefighters and emergency services personnel from around the region for their brave and selfless acts.

Lt. Michael Jason Carneal received a Bronze Valor Award for his actions the night of July 22. While off duty, Lt. Carneal was leaving his home at approximately 5:45 a.m. when he noticed a neighbor knocking and screaming at the door of another neighbor’s house. > Read more.

Business in brief


Gov. Terry McAuliffe has announced that McKesson Medical-Surgical, Inc., an affiliate of McKesson Corporation, a leading healthcare services and information technology company, will invest more than $10 million in capital expense to expand its divisional headquarters operation in Henrico County, creating 225 new jobs. The company will relocate its headquarters facility to 168,500 square feet of the Deep Run III building, which was recently purchased and renovated by Markel|Eagle Partners. The Virginia Economic Development Partnership worked with the Henrico County Economic Development Authority and the Greater Richmond Partnership to secure the project for Virginia. Gov. McAuliffe approved a $500,000 grant from the Governor’s Opportunity Fund to assist Henrico County with the project. Funding and services to support the company’s employee training activities will be provided through the Virginia Jobs Investment Program. > Read more.

Tribal rhythm

This young dancer was one of many who participated in the 23rd annual Great American Indian Exposition and Pow-Wow at the Richmond Raceway Complex in Henrico Nov. 15-16. The event also included a number of other activities and demonstrations. > Read more.

Free Agents Marketing wins IMPACT award

Henrico-based Free Agents Marketing won the Greater Richmond Chamber of Commerce’s 2014 IMPACT Award in the Small Business category, besting TrueTimber Tree Service and Unboxed Technology.

The awards recognize small and large companies for their impacts on the region’s economy, through innovation in their industries, community involvement and improving the lives of their employees.

From 2009 to 2013, Free Agents, through client expenditures, reinvested more than $34 million dollars into the greater Richmond region. In 2013, the agency sought services from more than 350 local vendors. > Read more.

Henrico HS closed again Friday

Contractor unlikely to face financial penalty for accident
UPDATE: NOV. 21, 9:55 A.M. – The contractor whose employee accidentally destroyed the power supply to most of Henrico High School Tuesday – causing the school to be closed for more than three days this week – is unlikely to face financial penalties from the school system as the result of the incident.

School officials are focused on efforts to restore power to the school, HCPS spokesman Andy Jenks told the Citizen.

"But at a later date, we'll get together with the contractor and discuss responsibility," Jenks wrote in an email. > Read more.

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Community

Villa’s Flagler Housing wins national NAEH award


St. Joseph's Villa’s Flagler Housing & Homeless Services was one of three entities to earn the National Alliance to End Homelessness' Champion of Change Award. The awards were presented Nov. 17 during a ceremony at the Newseum in Washington, D.C.

NAEH annually recognizes proven programs and significant achievements in ending child and family homelessness.

Flagler completed its transition from an on-campus shelter to the community-based model of rapid rehousing in 2013, and it was one of the nation's first rapid re-housing service providers to be certified by NAEH. > Read more.

RIR’s Christmas tree lighting rescheduled for Dec. 12


Richmond International Raceway's 13th annual Community Christmas tree lighting has been rescheduled from Dec. 6 to Monday, Dec. 12, at 6:30 p.m., due to inclement weather expected on the original date.

Entertainment Dec. 12 will be provided by the Laburnum Elementary School choir and the Henrico High School Mighty Marching Warriors band. Tree decorations crafted by students from Laburnum Elementary School and L. Douglas Wilder Middle School will be on display. Hot chocolate and cookies will be supplied by the Henrico High School football boosters. > Read more.
Entertainment

Weekend Top 10


For our Top 10 calendar events this weekend, click here! > Read more.

 

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The American Legion Post 233, 8088 Recreation Rd. in Varina, will host a free Music Jam at 5 p.m. every fourth Thursday of the month. Featuring country gospel and bluegrass music. Anyone is welcome to play or sing. Food and drinks are available for purchase. For details, call Wayne Gilbert at 572-3124. Full text

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