HCPS named a ‘Best Community for Music Education’ for 18th straight year


For the 18th year in a row, Henrico County Public Schools has been named one of the best communities in America for music education by the National Association of Music Merchants Foundation. The school division has earned the designation in each year the group has given the awards.

The designation is based on a detailed survey of a school division’s commitment to music instruction through funding, staffing of highly qualified teachers, commitment to standards and access to music instruction. The award recognizes the commitment of school administrators, community leaders, teachers and parents who believe in music education and work to ensure that music education accessible to all students.
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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.
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Drive nets book bonanza

Ministers’ group donates to elementary schools

Hundreds of Eastern Henrico elementary school students – many of whom don’t have books of their own at home – soon will have new reading materials, thanks to the generosity of a number of local churches.

The Henrico Ministers Conference, which counts nearly 50 members from churches throughout the county, collected about 1,200 books and recently donated them in equal quantities to the PTAs at Glen Lea, Montrose and Ratcliffe elementaries, which will distribute them to students at the schools. > Read more.

Local, state races take shape


Competition for elected positions in local and state government has picked up, with a number of candidates formally announcing their plans to seek office. The current slate of candidates includes:

Brookland District Supervisor (a special election will be held in November to fill the remaining two years of the term of Dick Glover, who died in February)

• Democrats – Courtney Lynch (the founder of Lead Star, a leadership development organization) and Danny Plaugher (the executive director of Virginians for High Speed Rail). The Democratic candidate will be selected during an April 29 caucus at The Cultural Arts Center at Glen Allen, from 10 am. to 2 p.m. > Read more.

Tax-filing deadline is Tuesday


Usually, April 15 is the filing deadline hanging over the heads of U.S. taxpayers. But this year, Americans have been granted a slight reprieve: They have until April 18 – this Tuesday – to submit their federal income taxes.

By law, individual tax returns are typically due on April 15. But when that falls on a weekend or holiday, as it does this year, the deadline is automatically extended.

The Internal Revenue Service offers a number of tips for people still working on filing their 2016 federal taxes. > Read more.

McClellan nominated for EMILY’s List’s Gabrielle Giffords Rising Star Award


EMILY’s List, the nation’s largest resource for women in politics, recently announced that Virginia state Senator Jennifer McClellan is a 2017 nominee for its Gabrielle Giffords Rising Star Award.

Named in honor of Giffords, a former Arizona Congresswoman who survived an assassination attempt in 2011, the Rising Star Award celebrates an extraordinary woman serving in state or local office. The award honors a woman who demonstrates the sort of commitment to community, dedication to women and families, and determination and civility that have been the highlights of Giffords’ career, in and out of office. > Read more.

Henrico names England to lead county’s public utilities department

Henrico County Manager John Vithoulkas has appointed Charles B. “Chip” England to serve as director of the Department of Public Utilities, effective May 15.

England currently works as the director of the Department of Engineering and Utilities for Prince George County. He will succeed Arthur D. Petrini, who is retiring from the position. Petrini has led Henrico’s DPU since 2001. > Read more.

Varina Area Library earns national design awards


The Varina Area Library recently won the AIA/ALA Library Building Award. The library, designed by Richmond architecture firm BCWH and Tappé Architects of Boston, was one of eight American and European libraries to be recognized. The Library Building Award is presented by the American Institute of Architects in conjunction with the American Library Association, and is the only award that recognizes whole library buildings for their design.

Varina Library was noted by the awarding agencies for “[bridging] its rural and historic context with the contemporary ambitions of the community.” The design was praised for its variety of indoor and outdoor spaces, supporting collaboration, communal activity, quiet study, project production, self-directed access to information and appreciation of the natural landscape. > Read more.

School system seeks bus drivers, nutrition workers

Job fair scheduled April 18

Henrico County Public Schools is seeking candidates for full-time and substitute bus drivers and full-time and substitute school nutrition services workers. Members of the HCPS Human Resources, School Nutrition Services, Custodial Services and Pupil Transportation departments will be at Henrico County Public Library’s Glen Allen branch on Staples Mill Rd. April 18 from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. to talk with interested candidates. Applicants are encouraged to apply online in advance at henricoschools.us/careers. Good bus driver candidates will be paid while they train.

Applicants without computer access or having trouble with the online application may contact the HCPS Human Resources Department at 652-3664 or stop by the department office at 3820 Nine Mile Road in Henrico to use computers and get help if needed. > Read more.

Animal instincts

'All Henrico Reads' author makes memorable visit to county

In March 2011, internationally bestselling author Sy Montgomery met a friend who changed her life. Six years later, speaking to a full auditorium at Glen Allen High School on April 5, Montgomery painted a picture of this friend, Athena, for the audience.

“She had a beak like a parrot, venom like a snake, and ink like an old-fashioned pen,” Montgomery said. “She could change color and shape and pull her baggy, boneless body through an opening the size of a walnut.”

Athena, a giant Pacific octopus, was central to the researching and writing of Montgomery’s book The Soul of an Octopus. She was the “someone” that Montgomery first introduced to the students, families and library patrons who sat in the audience at the annual All Henrico Reads program last Wednesday. > Read more.

Henrico County property transactions, Mar. 20-26


A sample of property transactions during this period appear below:

10220 Winston Boulevard – $118,000, 1,152 SF (built in 1953), from William and Holly Romm to 10220 Winston Boulevard Series.
4906 Finnegan Court – $124,000, 1,120 SF (built in 1985), from Barbara Tate to Ariel A. Hayes.
4702 Fairlake Lane – $132,000, 1,028 SF (built in 1976), from Patty Jean H. Shields and C. M. S. Shields Sr. and C. M. S. Shields, Jr. to A2ZProperty LLC.
20 Longstreet Avenue – $147,500, 2,111 SF (built in 1952), from Gene G. Tatum Trustee to Rishard James.
9111 Derbyshire Road #B – $155,000, 986 SF (built in 1964), from David M. Headly to Mark Hansen Troemel.
7506 Greengate Drive – $157,000, 1,250 SF (built in 1956), from Crystal Dawn Munnings to Gary L. Odegaard. > Read more.

Henrico church to offer ‘drive-in’ prayer services on Good Friday


APR. 11, 11 A.M. –Need a quick prayer? One Henrico church is making it easy for you this Good Friday.

From 3 p.m. to 6 p.m. April 15, Pastor Mark Sprowl will offer "drive-in" prayer on the circular drive at Laurel Presbyterian Church, 9675 Staples Mill Road (just north of Hungary Road). > Read more.

Business in brief


NetSearch Digital Marketing recently launched four new websites for its clients. VAKnee.com - for a local West End orthopedic surgeon, Dr. Bill Nordt; Neka Inc - one of the largest stone fabricating facilities in the nation; Aero Transfer - a national transportation and logistics company; and YardBirdsRVA - a local birdhouse shop. The company also has recently completed a redesign of its West End offices on Rigsby Road. > Read more.

Reynolds to host student art show


The Conference Center Gallery in the Workforce Development and Conference Center on J. Sargeant Reynolds Community College’s Parham Road Campus will open its doors to the public April 14 for the annual Student Art Show.

From 6:30 until 9 p.m., Reynolds will host the free event to showcase winners of the art show, the unveiling of a collaborative painting created and donated by Steven Smith (Richmond Symphony maestro) and Michael Bishop (GWAR lead singer), the opening of a donated 50-work retrospective exhibition by JC Gilmore-Bryan, and the release of local art advocate John Bryan’s new book “ART MATTERS to Reynolds Community College.” > 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 Children’s Clothing Closet at Highland Springs United Methodist Church, 22 N. Holly Ave., will be open from 10 a.m. to noon every Tuesday and from 4 p.m. to 6 p.m. every second and fourth Thursday of the month. Clothing is available in sizes infant through teen and is free. Clothes are located on the second floor and no elevator is available. Full text

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