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Business in brief


St. Joseph’s Villa recently received a $50,000 grant in support of its Career and Transition Services (CATS) program from the Altria Companies Employee Community Fund. Funds will be used to provide training and experience in job skills, work habits, teamwork and leadership to students with emotional, behavioral, developmental or intellectual disabilities. St. Joseph’s Villa’s CATS program consists of a series of steps to prepare students for workplace employment: assessments, goal development, in-class training, on-campus internships and off-campus work. More than 40 students took part in the program during the 2010-2011 school year and more students are expected to take part in the program this year. To learn more about CATS, visit http://www.neverstopbelieving.org/cats.

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The Princeton Review recently chose the Robins School of Business at the University of Richmond for its newest guidebook, “The Best 294 Business Schools (2012 Edition).” Princeton Review selected the 294 business schools based on 19,000 student surveys that rated their school’s job placement, potential for real-world business experience, professors and other factors. Editors cited area and regional business ties, faculty-student relationships and an MBA program support staff in selecting UR. The Robins School of Business was founded in 1949 and is consistently ranked among the top 20 in the country by Bloomberg Businessweek.

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Firehouse Subs recently announced its partnership with Coca-Cola as the first national chain to roll out the Coca-Cola Freestyle fountains. Coca-Cola Freestyle fountains are in place in all six Richmond-area restaurants and guests can try them out for free during Happy Hour on Friday, Nov. 4 from 4 p.m. to 6 p.m. The single, freestanding unit is touch-screen operated and offers regular and low-calorie beverage brands, flavored waters, sports drinks, lemonades and other options, many exclusive to Coca-Cola Freestyle. Guests can choose from endless possibilities, many never before marketed in the U.S., including brands such as caffeine-free Diet Coke® with Lime, Fanta® Peach, Minute Maid® Light Orange Lemonade and more. Firehouse Subs’ top-selling Cherry Lime-Aid®, an exclusive original recipe served with fresh squeezed lime, is one of the offerings on the fountains, making the chain the first to have its own signature drink brand with Coca-Cola Freestyle. For more information, visit http://www.firehousesubs.com .

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This Halloween Atkins, Maestrello, Miller & Associates Pediatric Dentistry will be giving away dollars in exchange for cavity-provoking candy. Trick-or-treaters can turn in their candy and receive $1 per pound, up to $5 per child and $10 per family. Every donor will also be entered into a raffle to win a family movie prize pack and will receive coupons for free food and prizes from local businesses, including Chick-fil-A, McDonald’s, SkateNation and Kangaroo Jac’s. Candy will be collected Nov. 1-11. All candy must be unopened. The collected candy will then be shipped to troops overseas in partnership with Operation Gratitude. Atkins, Maestrello, Miller & Associates is located at 2560 Gaskins Rd. For more information, call 741-2226. For more information on Operation Gratitude, visit http://www.operationgratitude.com .

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Debbie Johnston, president of Care Advantage, Nurse Advantage and All About Care, recently won the MS Society’s 2011 Women on the Move Award. The Central Virginia Chapter of the National Multiple Sclerosis Society announced Johnston as the winner at an awards luncheon in September. The luncheon helped to raise funds for “A World Free of MS” and included a silent auction, lunch and touching speeches from doctors and those struggling with MS. Johnston was chosen from 11 women who were recognized for their outstanding professional accomplishments and their contributions to the greater Richmond community.

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Virginia Credit Union recently received federal approval to originate, underwrite and close Federal Housing Authority (FHA) mortgages, a move which could reduce cost and save time for borrowers seeking FHA loans to purchase a home. Achieving the status places the credit union’s FHA offerings on par with major national banks and large originators, according to Jeff Coward, the credit union’s vice president of real estate lending. For credit union members, the designation will mean speedier loan origination and closing. By eliminating the need to send files to HUD or to an investor prior to closing, VACU will cut 5-10 business days off the FHA loan origination process. FHA loans allow sellers to contribute toward closing costs and borrowers may use gifts of funds in the down-payment.
Community

Celebrating 106 years

Former Sandston resident Mildred Taylor celebrated her 106th birthday Aug. 9. Taylor, who now lives in Powhatan, is still a member of Sandston Baptist Church. She was visited the day after her birthday by several members of the church, who played for her a recording of the entire church membership singing happy birthday to her during worship. > Read more.

YMCA breaks ground for aquatic center

YMCA officials gathered last week to break ground on the new Tommy J. West Aquatic Center at the Shady Grove Family YMCA on Nuckols Road. The center, which will featured 7,600 square feet of competitive and recreational space, including water slides, play areas for children and warmer water for those with physical limitations, is the fourth phase of a $4 million expansion at the facility. West was president and CEO of Capital Interior Contractors and a founding member of the Central Virginia Region of the Virginia Chapter of Associated Builders and Contractors. > Read more.

Rotary donates to ‘Bright Beginnings’

The Sandston Rotary Club recently donated $1,000 to the Sandston YMCA for its Bright Beginnings program, which helps provide children in need with school supplies for the new school year. > Read more.

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Entertainment

Journey to mediocrity

‘The Hundred-Foot Journey’ fails to capitalize on tasty concept
The Hundred-Foot Journey is a curious little Romeo and Juliet of a film. A family, forced out of their native India, begins a trek across Europe.

The family’s sole mode of transportation sputters and dies in a sleepy little French town, but the town’s food culture is high, and that’s a perfect place for a family of restaurateurs to settle down. There’s only one problem – the family’s rustic “Maison Mumbai” is right across the street (a hundred feet away, if the title didn’t clue you in) from a prestigious French bistro with a Michelin star, run with an iron fist by the dreaded Madame Mallory (Helen Mirren, pictured).

It’s here that a particular Romeo and Juliet story begins to develop, with Hassan (Manish Dayal) on the Indian side and Marguerite (Charlotte Le Bon) on the French side. > Read more.

Weekend Top 10


Enjoy the final days of summer with comedian Guy Torry, the Sam’s Club National BBQ Tour or mystery writer Mary Miley Theobald at Twin Hickory Library. Another great way to welcome the beginning of fall is to check out the UR Spider Football season opener with man’s best friend. For all our top picks this weekend, click here! > Read more.

Bottoms up

Short Pump brewery offers more than just beer
I am still (happily) thinking about my entire experience at Rock Bottom Restaurant and Brewery last week. Knowing nothing about this new brewery out of Denver, I was leery of brew-pub in the heart of Short Pump Town Center – this is not what I’d usually think of as a perfect fit, and yet, it was.

The restaurant and craft brewery opened in early June and features 10 beers made by female brewmaster Becky Hammond (pictured). This is the restaurant’s second location in Virginia; the first is in Arlington. Behind glass walls, customers watched the beer brewing in massive steel barrels. For our up-and-coming beer region, it makes sense that Short Pump would jump on board.

As I walked up to the back of the mall near the comedy club, I was taken aback by what I saw: at the top of the stairs was an overflowing restaurant with outdoor seating, large umbrellas and dangling outdoor lights. > Read more.

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