Henrico County VA

Steward DI team advances to global competition

These Steward School Destination ImagiNation team members will compete in the Destination ImagiNation global finals in Knoxville, Tenn., in May. Pictured (left to right) are: back row – Callen Smith, Katie Jobe and front row – Channing Haas, Dabney Leverty and James Cox.
Starting out as one of five Steward Lower School teams competing at the Destination ImagiNation (DI) regional tournament in Richmond, a group of Steward fourth and fifth graders is now the only Richmond team going global.

Having placed first in the improvisational “News to Me” category at the regional level, the team represented Steward at the state tournament March 31. The team earned highest honors in its “News to Me” skill challenge category there, which led the way to a wildcard bid to global competition slated for May 23-26 in Knoxville, Tennessee.

Under the leadership of parents and team managers Sydney Smith and Kris Leverty, the team consists of fourth graders Dabney Leverty, Callen Smith, Channing Haas and James Cox, and fifth grader Katie Jobe.

After weeks of preparation, the team brought selected news stories with them to the challenge site. There, they randomly selected one of their stories and related it to a second news story they were given through a "cause and effect" relationship. Additionally, they were given a one-minute “glitch,” which they had to incorporate into their improvised skit.

This is the second Steward team to reach the Global DI competition in two years. Last year, the Middle School team of Mary Madison Andrews, Will Jackson, Danny Kovach, Taylor Leahy, Connor Parish, Quincy Rhodes and Grace Yucha advanced to global competition.

Destination ImagiNation, Inc. is a non-profit organization that provides educational programs in which student teams solve open-ended challenges and present their solutions at tournaments. Teams are tested to think on their feet, work together and devise original solutions that satisfy the requirements of the challenges.
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

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.

Deep Run HS plans fall musical

Tickets for Deep Run High School’s fall musical production – Aida – will go on sale Nov. 3. The Elton John-Tim Rice pop opera, inspired by Verdi’s classic opera, tells the story of enslaved Nubian princess Aida, who falls for captain of the guard Radames, who is betrothed to the Egyptian princess.

Performances will be held Nov. 13-15 at 7 p.m. each day. > Read more.

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