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Gettings Named 2010 Virginia Art Educator of the Year

The Extended Board of the Virginia Art Education Association (VAEA) recently selected Michael Gettings, art specialist for Henrico County Public Schools, as the Virginia Art Educator of the Year for 2010. He was honored at the annual fall conference awards ceremony held in Norfolk on Nov. 6.

Next, Gettings (at left in photo, with Scott Russell, president of the Virginia Art Education Association) will become a candidate for the Southeastern Region Art Educator of the Year, the next step in the National Art Education Association (NAEA) Awards Program, initiated to recognize outstanding art educations from all divisions. The outcome will be announced in the spring of 2012. If selected as the winner, he will then be considered for the National Art Educator of the Year.

“This is an honor that is truly humbling,” says Gettings. “Visual Art education is a transformative experience for our students that teaches critical and creative thinking skills needed in the 21st century. Data from The College Board shows that students who take four years of arts and music classes while in high school score 103 points better on their SATs than students who took only one-half year or less. As the art specialist, I am fortunate to work with people that put incredible effort into teaching our children. This effort is shown in the beautiful works of art in our community, schools, and homes. It is also reflected in the advanced levels of excellence that our students achieve. “

Gettings has served as the art educational specialist for HCPS for three years. He previously taught for Chesterfield County Public Schools as an elementary and high school teacher and an instructional technology resource teacher. Prior to a career in art education, Gettings worked for WRVQ Q94 Radio for 13 years.

Gettings has served on the VAEA Board as the Youth Art Month Co-Chair and Technology Chair. He is the founding member of the Web Policy Committee for the National Art Education Association. His work has been published in the VAEA newsletter, “School Arts” magazine, and the NAEA newsletter.

His past awards include: Teacher of the Year 1999, Swift Creek Middle School; National Youth Art Month Award Winner 2005, 2006; Virginia Secondary Art Educator of the Year 2004; and Southeastern Region NAEA Secondary Art Teacher of the Year 2006.
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

The Boathouse to open at Short Pump Town Center

The Boathouse restaurant will open at Short Pump Town Center in the spring, its third location in the region.

“People have asked us to come to the West End for years,” said owner Kevin Healy. “When the opportunity arose, we knew had to jump on it.”

The new restaurant will be located in a 5,800-square-foot space under the Hyatt House Hotel at the town center and will include a large outdoor patio. > Read more.

Getting a ‘mouf’-ful

Boka Kantina exceeds its strong food truck reputation
Already a fan of Boka fare from outdoor events with the Tako Truck, I was delighted to learn of the new restaurant, and eager to see if its reputation held up after putting down brick-and-mortar roots.

Would the food lose its zest if I wasn’t enjoying it in the great outdoors? Would it seem pedestrian served from an ordinary kitchen instead of a truck?

Would the tacos be less satisfying as an antidote to normal lunch hunger – instead of being ingested to stave off desperate hunger after a long afternoon of crowds, sun, and tedious lines? > Read more.

Lakeside microbrewery beginning to take shape

Original Gravity gets the green light to move forward with relocation, expansion into larger space

A Lakeside home-brewing shop has felt the gravitational pull toward the booming craft beer scene.

Original Gravity, a shop that sells beer and wine kits for homebrewers, has just been given the green light to start work on a microbrewery.

Owner Tony Ammendolia is expanding his 1,000-square-foot shop in Lakeside Town Center to 5,000-square-foot digs a few doors down to add a brewery and expand his supplies.

Ammendolia opened the home-brew supply store in November 2011 and since then he said business has taken off.

“I think I outgrew this place in the first year,” Ammendolia said. “We’ve seen steady growth and I’ve been looking for a place to expand to move the shop to get more square footage.” > Read more.

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