Henrico County VA

Teddy bears donated to National Guard

Children of some local National Guard members will be able to find comfort when their parents are deployed overseas, thanks to a recent donation organized by a Henrico man.

At the Sandston Armory on June 15, LOGO Dynamics Incorporated’s Matt Davidson presented 75 National Guard teddy bears to Lieutenant Colonel Douglas Gagnon, State Family Programs Director Vickie L. Sais, and State Youth Coordinator Dana Ivory.

These bears, sporting shirts emblazoned with the National Guard symbol, will be distributed to the children of men and women in the Richmond area who are deployed for military service.

This was not Davidson’s first teddy bear donation; in 2008, he collected enough money to purchase 200 bears. He has acquired the necessary funds for this charity with the help of the Constant Contact e-mail marketing program.

Davidson utilized the program’s “event promotion” section to reach out to more than 300 contacts on his customer list and consequently received just more than $350 in donations. One such contributor was Bob Leahy from First Protection Equipment Company, who donated $250 – enough money to purchase 50 bears.

Davidson’s involvement in the effort stemmed from his membership in a community service group that organized an Armed Forces Day in response to the Sept. 11, 2001 attacks.

A contact from National Guard Family Support presented the teddy bear idea to Davidson, who jumped at the chance to give back to the community.

Virginia has supplied citizen soldiers to all conflicts from the Indian wars of the 1600s to the global fight against terrorism today. A $5 donation is enough to purchase one bear and show a National Guard family that someone cares, Davidson said.

The effort to show support for National Guard families is ongoing and anyone wishing to make a donation should mail checks to: LOGO Dynamics, Inc., P.O. Box 891, Glen Allen, VA 23060, Attn: Matt Davidson.
Community

Lions Club donates backpacks to elementary school

The Richmond West Breakfast Lions Club (based in western Henrico) recently donated 59 backpacks to the Westover Hills Elementary School on Jahnke Road.

Above, club members display some of the backpacks prior to their distribution. > Read more.

Glen Allen student to perform at Carnegie Hall

Thanks to a first-place win in The American Protege International Vocal Competition 2014, Glen Allen High School student Matija Tomas will travel to New York City to perform at Carnegie Hall in December.

At the first-place winners recital in Weill Hall, Matija will perform Giacomo Puccini’s opera aria, “Chi il bel sogna di doretta.” She will perform with other vocalists from around the world and have the opportunity to win other awards and scholarships.

Locally, Thomas has performed with Richmond’s renowned Glorious Christmas Nights, Christian Youth Theatre, and WEAG’s Urban Gospel Youth Choir. > Read more.

Gayton Baptist Church dedicates new outreach center


The John Rolfe YMCA and Gayton Baptist Church have partnered in an effort to bring greater health and wellness opportunities to the community.

Through this partnership, the John Rolfe Y will run Youth Winter Sports programs, including basketball and indoor soccer, in Gayton’s newly renovated $5.5 million outreach center that features a new gymnasium, youth and teen space, social space with café, meeting space and full service commercial kitchen. > Read more.

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Entertainment

Weekend Top 10


It’s Halloween! Ghosts and goblins are everywhere…especially at Dorey Park’s Monster Mash and the annual Pumpkin Festival at Gayton Crossing Shopping Center. But don’t let the fun stop on the 31st – the Latin Ballet of Virginia will present El Dia de los Muertos Family Festival on Nov. 1. And if you need a break from the candy, enjoy some classical music at the University of Richmond and the Weinstein JCC on Sunday. For all our top picks this weekend, click here! > Read more.

Brews and bites done right

Urban Tavern’s big, bold themes impress

The Urban Tavern opened in August, replacing the former Shackelford’s space at 10498 Ridgefield Parkway in Short Pump. Because of local and longtime devotion to Shackleford’s, Urban Tavern has some big shoes to fill.

Without any background information, I headed to the restaurant for dinner on a Wednesday night, two months after its opening.

On a perfect fall evening, four out of eight outdoor tables were taken, giving the impression that the restaurant was busier than it was. On the inside, a couple tables were taken, and a few folks were seated at the bar. > Read more.

A terrible, horrible movie. . . that’s actually pretty good

‘Alexander’ provides uncomplicated family fun
It’s not surprising in the least that Alexander and the Terrible, Horrible, No Good, Very Bad Day doesn’t much resemble the book it’s based upon.

Judith Viorst’s 1972 picture book isn’t exactly overflowing with movie-worthy material. Boy has bad day. Boy is informed that everyone has bad days sometimes. Then, the back cover.

In the film, the terrible, horrible, no good, very bad-ness is blown up to more extreme size. Alexander Cooper (Ed Oxenbould) has a bum day every day, while the rest of his family (Steve Carell, Jennifer Garner, Dylan Minnette, Kerris Dorsey) exist in a constant bubble of perfection and cheery optimism – to the point that the family is so wrapped up in their own success that Alexander’s being ignored.

So on the eve of his 12th birthday, Alexander makes a wish: just once, he’d like his family to see things from his perspective; to experience the crushing disappointment of one of those no good, very bad days. Once he has blown out the candle on his pre-birthday ice cream sundae, his family’s fate is sealed: one full day of crippling disasters for all of them. > Read more.

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