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Business in brief


The Greater Richmond Partnership has announced that Kels USA Corporation has chosen Henrico County for the location of its expansion to the United States. The electrical contact material company has started business with a small sales office with plans to expand to manufacturing their products locally in the next 2-4 years. The Partnership first met with Kels during a marketing mission to Hannover Messe, the world’s largest industrial trade fair. Subsequent meetings and visits followed, including three visits to the Richmond Region and three to the Kels headquarters in Brazil during marketing missions. Before choosing Henrico, the company considered locations in Illinois, North Carolina, Massachusetts and Georgia. Kels cited their main reason to expand to the U.S. is for market entry and proximity to the current customers to provide better service. Kels, founded in 1976, manufactures metal-based products for the electro-electronics, automotive and appliance industries. Kels also plays a great role in refrigeration, tooling and metallurgical industries supplying brazing alloys. By 2019, the company estimates that it will be successful enough to expand its facility to a 100-person manufacturing center. > Read more.

Youth awards honor 17 from Henrico


Honorees from 45 area public and private schools joined with parents, educators, and community leaders Feb. 12 for the 48th Annual Brotherhood Sisterhood Youth Awards program, sponsored by the Interfaith Council of Greater Richmond (ICGR) and held at River Road Baptist Church.

Keynote speaker Jonathan C. Zur, CEO and President of the Virginia Center for Inclusive Communities, led the gathering of educators, parents, and community leaders in congratulating award winners. Among students recognized for their excellence of character, efforts on behalf of social and cultural justice, and desire to help others overcome prejudice and discrimination were 17 Henrico County seniors. > Read more.
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Henrico Fire officials pluck a duck, dog from icy ponds


Henrico Fire officials weren't auditioning for the sequel to the movie Frozen in recent weeks, but they could have been.

Firefighters used the bitter cold weather in late February as an opportunity to practice ice-rescue training at a partially frozen lake at Three Lakes Park – a rare opportunity to get hands-on experience in such environments.

The Division of Fire's Technical Rescue tam, Hazardous Materials team and Search and Rescue Dive team joined to practice rescuing a team member who was placed in the water in a special ice suit (above). > Read more.

Woman wins $4M lottery prize in Henrico

You might call it a very unusual Valentine’s Day present. Brenda Maxey won the $4 million top prize in the Virginia Lottery’s $4 Million Mega Multiplier Scratcher game – and it happened on Feb. 14.

She bought the winning ticket at Sandston Chubby’s, 5710 Williamsburg Road in Sandston. Then she took the ticket out to her car and scratched it. That’s when she realized she’d won the game’s top prize.

“I looked at. I looked at it again,” she said as she claimed her prize. “I thought, ‘That can’t be right!’” > Read more.

General Assembly finalizes ethics bill


The results are in. All of the General Assembly’s work on ethics reform in the 2015 session came to an end Friday with the passage of a 98-page bill that lawmakers hailed as a significant accomplish, but some critics said it still needs work.

The issue of ethics has been a joke for some legislators, but House Speaker William J. Howell said on the first day of the session that it is the responsibility of the General Assembly to gain Virginia’s trust back.

The week before the session started, former Gov. Bob McDonnell was sentenced to two years in prison for corruption – and toward the end of the session, his wife Maureen was given a prison term of one year and a day. > Read more.

Bill would deny bail in strangulation cases


People accused of strangulation would automatically be denied bail under legislation sent to Gov. Terry McAuliffe for his signature.

Proponents of House Bill 2120 say it will help protect victims of domestic violence. The Senate and House unanimously approved the measure during the final week of the legislative session.

The bill was sponsored by Del. Ben Cline, R-Rockbridge, with input from Attorney General Mark Herring. > Read more.

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Community

‘Fresh Start’ offered for single moms

The Fresh Start For Single Mothers and Their Children Community Outreach Project will host “Necessary Ingredients” on Thursdays from 6 p.m. to 7:30 p.m., beginning Feb. 12 and continuing through May 7, at Velocity Church, 3300 Church Road in Henrico. Dinner and childcare will be provided free of charge.

The program is designed as a fun and uplifting event for single mothers that is designed to provide support, new friendships, encouragement and motivation. Each event will include weekly prizes and giveaways. > Read more.

Daughters of American Colonists chapter clips $1M+ in coupons for troops

Members of a local organization gave their scissors a workout last year, clipping more than $1 million worth of coupons to benefit military personnel.

The Pocahontas Chapter, National Society Daughters of the American Colonists, clipped 735,479 manufacturers’ coupons valued at a total of $1.12 million throughout 2014 as part of its Coupons for Military Families Program. Program chair Carole Featherson recently shipped the coupons to U.S. military bases overseas, where they can be used in base stores.

The National Society Daughters of American Colonists is a women’s genealogical and patriotic society whose members are descended from a man or woman who rendered civil or military service in any of the American colonies prior to July 4, 1776. > Read more.

VCU to offer free dental services for children in need Feb. 6

On Feb. 6 – "Give Kids a Smile Day" – the Virginia Commonwealth University School of Dentistry’s Pediatric Dentistry Clinic will provide free services for local children in need of dental care who do not have dental insurance.

The clinic will be open Feb. 6 from 8 a.m. to 3 p.m., in the Wood Memorial Building, 521 N. 11th Street, Richmond.

The Department of Pediatric Dentistry will provide exams, cleanings, X-rays, fillings, extractions and minor restorations for children from birth to age 18. The Pediatric Dental Clinic has 14 chairs with two suites for general anesthesia and two rooms for oral sedation and specializes in dental care for medically compromised and special needs children as well as otherwise healthy children. > Read more.

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Entertainment

Soak up the fun

‘SpongeBob’ movie energizes with wit, laughter

There’s a ton of sugar in The SpongeBob Movie: Sponge Out of Water. Literal sugar, as SpongeBob Squarepants (Tom Kenny) and Patrick (Bill Fagerbakke) inhale their own weight in cotton candy and eat ice cream, one scoop per mouthful.

At one point we burrow into the brain of our boxy yellow hero and discover the inner workings of his brain: googly-eyed cakes and candies that giggle and sing. All of which is extremely appropriate for a film like Sponge Out of Water. Because not only is the movie sweet (the “awwww” kind of sweet), but it’s the equivalent of a 30-candy bar sugar rush, zipping between ideas like a sponge on rocket skates.

The story under all this is really not that complicated. SpongeBob flips burgers at the Krusty Krab. > Read more.

Weekend Top 10


With this last round of snow still fresh on the ground, the best way to start the weekend may be at Southern Season for their weekly wine-tasting program, Fridays Uncorked. Families with cabin fever will enjoy the Richmond Kids Expo, taking place tomorrow at the Richmond Raceway Complex. Some date night options include the Rock & Roll Jubilee at The Cultural Arts Center at Glen Allen, HATTheatre’s production of “The Whale” and National Theatre Live’s “Treasure Island” at the University of Richmond. 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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