Henrico County VA

Henrico Opens New Tourism Center

Kicking off "a year of 16 months," Henrico County officials this morning officially opened the Henrico County Tourist Information Center, located at the Dabbs House Museum at the Eastern Government Center on Nine Mile Road.

The center, which is one of 61 certified visitors center statewide, will be open from 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. Wednesday through Sunday. The county intends to highlight its 2011 quadricentennial activities through the center and hopes to boost tourism as a result. Henrico is planning 11 featured events as part of its celebration, beginning with this year with the Oct. 16 Harvest Festival at Meadow Farm. {{more}}

"It's our anniversary, and it's our party, and we wanted to get excited," Board of Supervisors Chairwoman Pat O'Bannon said during today's ceremony. O'Bannon, who also serves as the chairwoman of the county's 2011 advisory committee, said she hopes the center will spur increased visitor traffic to Henrico.

"Tourism is our first stop on this journey," she said.

The center features multi-media information about the county's history, historical sites, cultural opportunities and local attractions. A new display highlights four centuries of Henrico history on a timeline. Tours of the facility, which also includes rooms redecorated as they would have looked during the Civil War, also are available.

The Dabbs House facility was built in 1820 and known as High Meadow. It later served as a Confederate hospital and as a military headquarters for General Robert E. Lee and then was purchased by the county in 1883 for use as an alms house for the poor.

The Henrico Division of Police occupied the building from 1941 to 2005, before the county renovated it and reopened it in November 2008 as a museum.

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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