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Business in brief


Universal Ford Sales, Inc., of Glen Allen, is one of 14 Virginia companies listed in “Black Enterprise” magazine’s 40th annual BE100s report. The comprehensive analysis includes a total of 230 companies broken down into seven categories; Universal Ford Sales is ranked No. 57 in the auto dealers category. The dealership had almost $23 million in revenue in 2011. “Black Enterprise,” a business, investing and wealth-building resource for African Americans, develops rankings by collecting surveys from companies and gathering information from various agencies and associations. The business must be at least 51% black-owned to be eligible.

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Simon Property Group, Inc. is inviting the public to explore leasing and advertising opportunities at the Business Opportunity Day on Thursday, July 19 from 9 a.m. to 1 p.m. at Virginia Center Commons Mall, 10101 Brook Rd. Small business counselors will be on hand to provide tools and financing advice, as well as two guest speakers – Certified Book Yourself Solid Coach Jan Leaton at 9:30 a.m. and Larry Lee, from the Richmond office of SCORE, at 11 a.m. Admission is free. For details, call Mall Manager Angela Crowder or Melody Braithwaite, leasing, at 266-9002.

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HHHunt Corp., the parent company of HHHunt Homes, made a significant jump on Builder Magazine’s recently released “2011 Builder 100,” showing the most improvement among all other homebuilders. Now ranked 71 in the nation, HHHunt Corp. climbed 71 spots from its rank of 142 in 2010. HHHunt’s national ranking is inclusive of 88 residences from Handcrafted Homes. Assessed independently, HHHunt Homes grew from 142 closings in 2010 to 281 closings in 2011, indicating a 98 percent growth increase – the fastest-growing builder on the magazine’s “Builder 100” list.

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Great Relationships, Inc., a global not-for-profit organization dedicated to strengthening marital relationships, has named Angelia (Angie) Z. Fritter, of Richmond, to the organization’s board of directors. Fritter, a financial adviser with Eagle Strategies, LLC, a registered investment adviser, will serve as treasurer.

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Chuck Bartlett, senior vice president of health strategies at the American Heart Association's Mid-Atlantic Affiliate (MAA), recently received the association's 2012 Earl B. Beagle Award for Staff Excellence. The award is the association's most prestigious staff leadership honor and recognizes leadership, professionalism, dedication and excellence in performance. Bartlett's innovative and forward-thinking leadership style has driven the MAA to continuous achievements and awards in areas including government relations, quality improvement, development, health strategies, health equity and volunteerism. He has been with the AHA for 29 years.

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Martin’s Food Markets recently participated in the Salvation Army’s Donuts of Hope: A Dough-Raising Event program. During the in-store campaign, Martin’s donated 25 cents of every donut sold at its stores in the Richmond region from May 27 to June 2, resulting in a contribution of $4,225. In addition, Martin’s matched the contribution for a total donation to the Salvation Army of $8,450. For more information, please visit http://www.donutsofhope.org .

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Cushman & Wakefield Thalhimer recently handled the following lease negotiations: Fast Auto Loans, Inc. – renewed its lease of 4,000 square feet at 5218 W. Broad St.; Hand & Stone Massage and Facial Spa – leased 3,000 square feet in The Corner at Short Pump at W. Broad Street and Lauderdale Dr.; Professional Financial Services – renewed its lease of 1,608 square feet in Glenside Commons at 5400 Glenside Dr.; and Consept, LLC – leased 1,500 square feet at 2421 Westwood Ave.

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The next Henrico Business Council Networking Breakfast will be held Wednesday, July 11 from 7:15 a.m. to 9 a.m. in the Forest Campus Cafeteria at Henrico Doctors’ Hospital, 1602 Skipwith Rd. Henrico County Manager Virgil Hazelett will give the State of Henrico County Address. The council is again partnering with the Henrico Education Foundation for the Henrico School Supply Challenge and will be accepting school supplies for students in need at the July and August meetings. To register, call 783-9368.

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The Greater Richmond Chamber of Commerce will host a healthcare reform panel discussion on Thursday, July 19 from 7:30 a.m. to 9 a.m. at Anthem Headquarters, 2015 Staples Mill Rd. Panelists will explore the status of healthcare reform, the impact of the Supreme Court decision and why employers should care. Admission is free for Chamber members and $15 to $25 for nonmembers. For details, call Stephanie Phillips at 783-9350 or visit http://www.grcc.com .

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Nominations for the Henrico Business Council’s Henrico Business of the Year award are currently being accepted. First established in 2010, the Henrico Business of the Year award honors local businesses that positively influence the Greater Richmond's economy, contribute to the Henrico County community, improve the lives of their employees and/or demonstrate innovation within their specific industry. For-profit and not-for-profit organizations are eligible. For more information or to obtain a nomination form, email .(JavaScript must be enabled to view this email address).

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Effective July 1, the following Greater Richmond Chamber members joined the Henrico Business Council Cabinet: Tom Falat, of Policy Partnership, LLC; Katy Holder, of Free Agents Marketing, Inc.; Morenike Miles, of Dominion; and Dana Welcher, of CarMax, Inc. The HBC Cabinet focuses on issues of interest to the business community within Henrico County and shares an interest in applying a regional perspective to local issues.


Community

Varina Ruritans honor students

The Varina Ruritan Club hosted the winners of its 2014 Environmental Essay contest at its monthly meeting March 11 in Varina.

The contest, in its eighth year, was for the first time open to students in grades 3-5 at Varina Elementary School. (It previously was open to Sandston Elementary School students.)

The meeting included the winners, parents of the winners, Varina Elementary principal Mark Tyler and several teachers who were in charge of the contest at the school. > Read more.

Baseball game to benefit Glen Allen Buddy Ball


For the fifth consecutive year, St. Christopher’s and Benedictine will play a varsity baseball game at Glen Allen's RF&P Park as part of a fundraising effort for the River City Buddy Ball program.

The game will take place Saturday, April 12, at 7 p.m., and the teams hope to raise $3,000 through donations, raffles and other efforts. Admission to the game is free, but fans who attend are asked to donate funds for the Glen Allen Youth Athletic Association's Buddy Ball program, which enables disabled children and teens to play baseball. > Read more.

Highland Springs field to be dedicated in honor of longtime coach Spears

The Henrico Division of Recreation and Parks will dedicate the Highland Springs Little League Majors Field in memory and honor of Rev. Robert “Bob” L. Spears, Jr., on April 12 with a ceremony at the field at 8 a.m.

Spears served the league as a coach and volunteer for 30 years and was praised as a pioneer for equality. His “Finish strong” motto embodied ethical perseverance on the field and in life. > Read more.

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Entertainment

A fun, fuzzy ride

‘Muppets Most Wanted’ worthy of its franchise

Do Muppets sleep? It’s hard to say.

They don’t really eat (or breathe, as far as anyone can tell). And only occasionally do they have visible, functioning legs.

As far as anyone knows, sleeping might be off the table. And that makes it very hard to accuse the Muppets of sleepwalking through their latest feature, Muppets Most Wanted – even if that’s exactly what’s going on.

Jim Henson’s beloved creations were back in a big way after 2011’s The Muppets, with fame and fortune and even an Oscar, a first for the group (“Rainbow Connection” was nominated, yet somehow failed to collect at the ’79 ceremony). > Read more.

Weekend Top 10


There’s no excuse for kids and families to not get out of the house this weekend! The Armour House and Gardens has an “Egg-celent Egg-venture” planned and Reynolds Community College will host the Reynolds Family Palooza. If you’re looking to give back to your community, Dorey Park will host Walk Like MADD and coordinators2inc will present the annual Kids Walk for Kids. And a special event for children with special needs will be on Sunday – the Caring Bunny will be at Virginia Center Commons. For all our top picks this weekend, click here! > Read more.

A new meaning for fried chicken

Is it heresy to say – in this bastion-of-tradition capital of the Old South – that it's time for Southern fried chicken to take a step back and make way for a new fried chicken king?

Count me among the new believers bowing to Bonchon Chicken's delectable double-fried bliss. Hand-brushed with signature garlic soy or hot sauce, flash-fried once and then again, the decadent drums and wings take "crisp" to a new level. If you're eating with a crowd and everyone bites in at once, be warned: you might need ear plugs to handle the din. > Read more.

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The Richmond Apartment Owners’ “Think Tank” group will meet at 12 p.m. at Piccadilly Café, 8004 W. Broad St. The topic is Ideas for Maximizing Your Advertising. The Think Tank… Full text

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