Business News: Oct. 7-20, 2010 Issue

Greg Riggs opened Stone’s Field of Dreams farm at 8481 Hungary Road earlier this year, hoping to create an atmosphere in which future farmers can learn the trade. The farm produces and offers vegetables for sale to consumers and commercial businesses. It is offering hayrides daily from 11 a.m. to 6 p.m. (except on Sundays, when they will run from 11 a.m. to 3 p.m.). Haunted hayrides for children will begin Oct. 16. For details, call 332-7000.

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The Greater Richmond Partnership, Inc., a regional economic development organization, received six awards for excellence in economic development and communications from the International Economic Development Council (IEDC) and the Southern Economic Development Council (SEDC). The IEDC honors were presented at an awards ceremony Sept. 28 during the IEDC Annual Conference in Columbus, Oh. The SEDC Communications Awards were presented at the SEDC Annual Conference held Aug. 14-17 New Orleans.

The GRP also recently named Charles “Chuck” Peterson as vice president. Prior to joining GRP, Peterson spent 17 years at the West Virginia Development Office, where he advanced his career from research analyst to manager, research and strategic planning unit.

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The Richmond Metropolitan Convention and Visitors Bureau recently earned the 2010 Excellence in Internet Award by the Southeast Tourism Society. The award, which was presented at the Shining Example Awards banquet, recognizes extraordinary performance in digital communication.

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Thalhimer recently announced the following leases in Henrico County: Sausage Craft, LLC leased 4,400 square feet of space at 2004 Dabney Road (R. Scott Douglas and Franklin Bell of Thalhimer handled lease negotiations); VSF Sweepstakes Centers leased 2,200 square feet of space at 4501 West Broad Street (Michael A. Shaia of Thalhimer handled lease negotiations); Jeffrey C. Robinson CPA leased 1,296 square feet of space at the Banks Brothers Building at 4461 Cox Road (Evan M. Magrill, Dean Meyer and Brian K. Berkey of Thalhimer handled lease negotiations). Thalhimer also announced the sale of approximately 2.033 acres of land at 7800 Shrader Road, from A.F. Associates, LLP, to IHH Properties, LLC. Millard F. Jones of Thalhimer handled the sale negotiations.

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Richmond-based based company H&A Architects & Engineers ranked sixth of 200 on The Zweig Letter Hot Firm List, a construction industry consulting and publication firm. This annual list features the architecture, engineering, and environmental firms that have outperformed the economy and competitors to become leaders in their field.

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Volunteer leader Deb Downing recently was selected as the “Beacon of Hope” recipient by Safe Harbor, a Henrico organization whose goal is to stop domestic violence. The award recognizes excellence in advocacy against intimate partner violence.  Downing will be honored this week at a reception at the Visual Arts Center of Richmond. Downing has a long-standing history of activism against intimate partner violence in Virginia.  In 1975, she oversaw operations for Shelter for Help and Emergency, a program to help victims of domestic violence in the Charlottesville area.  Four years later, she was selected as the agency’s executive director, a position she held for 10 years. After 14 years of service at the local level, Downing transitioned to state-level policy and advocacy work. Downing has helped to implement public policy, and funding and training programs to enhance Virginia’s capacity to serve survivors of intimate partner violence and their children.

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Lisa Wilson Gidcumb recently opened her new company, S E M E Education Consulting LLC. S E M E is a “child first” business that works collaboratively with parents and schools for the children’s success. S E M E, “Special Education Made Easy,” is a comprehensive consulting company providing personalized and meaningful education solutions to parents and schools throughout Virginia. For details, visit http://www.semeedconsulting.com


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Founder and president of Richmond marketing and public relations firm OFD Consulting Meghan Ely recently was chosen as the keynote speaker for the Business of Wedding Ireland Conference, which will take place Nov. 2-3 in Killarney, Ireland. At the conference, Ely will cover topics such as “The State of the Wedding Industry,” “Expectations of Brides and Grooms,” “Marketing to Brides in this Economy,” “Social Media and Networking” and “Pre-bridal Show Strategies,” in a two day seminar.

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The National Association of Scholars recently recognized the University of Richmond’s John Marshall International Center for the Study of Statesmanship as an “excellent program” for its approach to understanding and practicing responsible leadership. The center is advised by an international board of distinguished scholars, including honorary chair and former prime minister of Great Britain Margaret Thatcher.

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America’s Best Cleaners recently selected Richmond’s Puritan Cleaners as one of America’s best dry cleaning establishments. The recognition also certifies the dry cleaning business under the Fashion Care Label of Europe, a worldwide network of certified dry cleaners.
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Henrico promotional company changes name


Henrico-based brand merchandising company NewClients, Inc. has changed its name to Boost Promotional Branding.

The company is one of the nation's largest in the branded merchandise industry. Founded in 1981, its serves more than 5,000 clients – including many Fortune 500 companies – nationwide. > Read more.

Lidl competition offers shoppers chance to win NYC trip


Three Lidl shoppers will win trips to New York City to receive a first-look at the Esmara by Heidi Klum collection and attend an international runway event debuting the collection. The contest is open to residents of Virginia, North Carolina and South Carolina – the three states in which Lidl currently operates grocery stores. The chain opened two stores in Henrico County last month. > Read more.

Glen Allen advances in 14U Babe Ruth World Series


The Glen Allen Babe Ruth Baseball League 14-year-old all-star team advanced to the single-elimination round of the 14-year-old World Series, which the Glen Allen Youth Athletic Association is hosting at RF&P Stadium in Glen Allen. > Read more.

Earnhardt gives Redskins a ride


Dale Earnhardt Jr., driver of the Hendrick Motorsports No. 88, stopped at Richmond Raceway Aug. 8 in advance of the track’s NASCAR weekend in September. He was joined by five players from the Washington Redskins, who were in town for the team's training camp, which concluded Aug. 14. The day in Richmond gave Earnhardt and the Redskins players an opportunity to see how the athletes compete in their respective sports. > Read more.

READ Center a finalist for $25k grant


The READ Center is a top-200 cause finalist in State Farm’s Neighborhood Assist program, making it eligible to earn a $25,000 grant to support adult literacy in the Richmond region. The 40 organizations from across the nation with the most votes will win grants.

The READ Center, based in Henrico, provides classroom instruction and one-to-one tutoring to adults with very low literacy. > Read more.

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Innsbrook After Hours continues its 32nd year with CMT’s Nashville in Concert. From screen to stage, experience the music from CMT’s award-winning show “Nashville” live with cast members Clare Bowen, Chris Carmack, Charles Esten and Jonathan Jackson, performing songs from the hit series as well as original material. Gates open at 5 p.m. Show begins at 6 p.m. Tickets start at $20. Net proceeds from the concert series benefit the American Constitution Spirit Foundation and the Innsbrook Foundation. Rain or shine. For tickets and more information, call the IAH Hotline at 423-1779 or visit http://www.innsbrookafterhours.com. Full text

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