Henrico County VA
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Supervisors fail to reach conclusion on dog parks

Following its second work session on the topic, the Henrico Board of Supervisors remains undecided about whether to alter a county ordinance in order to permit private dog parks.

Board members discussed the matter Dec. 11 but failed to reach a consensus about whether to move forward with it. The matter arose initially when the Wyndham Foundation inquired about the possibility of building such a park within its community, citing interest from residents who responded to a survey.

County officials do not recommend that the board authorize the establishment of private dog parks, County Manager Virgil Hazelett told the board. But if the board chooses to permit them, officials recommend that it does so with the same standards that apply to public dog parks – except within multi-family housing communities, where standards could be relaxed.

During the Dec. 11 work session, county planners told supervisors that they would recommend private dog parks in single-family communities be at least one acre in size with 400-foot setbacks on all sides and a five-foot fence around the perimeter of the park.

But within multi-family communities, planners would recommend that such parks need be only a half-acre at minimum and be located within the interior of the development, though not necessarily subject to setback requirements.

The Wyndham Foundation felt that the standards proposed by planners were too restrictive and not appropriate for their concept of a dog park, Henrico principal planner Ben Blankenship told the board.

Henrico’s first public dog park opened in October 2011 at Dorey Park. Another one is being considered at Short Pump Park, Three Chopt District Supervisor Dave Kaechele said.

Board Chair Dick Glover appeared visibly agitated during the discussion last week, suggesting on several occasions that the board should either act or quit talking about the matter.

“This is, what, the third meeting that we’ve had on this?” Glover said. “And we’re no farther along than we were when we started.”

Kaechele is expected to meet with Wyndham officials again to determine whether supervisors will take any action on the matter or not.


Community

Lewis Ginter Botanical Garden raises admission $1

Lewis Ginter Botanical Garden’s admission has increased by $1 across all categories. Admission is now $12 for adults; $11 for seniors ages 55 and older; and $8 for children ages 3–12. Admission remains free for children ages 3 and younger and for members.

The last price increase was in 2011, before the Garden consistently hosted Butterflies LIVE! (which is included with admission). > Read more.

Garden tails

The threat of bad weather didn’t keep visitors away from Lewis Ginter Botanical Garden July 10 for the facility’s weekly Flowers After 5 event (which pairs music and food with a chance to stroll the garden) and its monthly Fidos After 5 (which allows dog owners to bring their pets with them to enjoy the evening). > Read more.

Western Henrico Rotary helps fund Midwives For Haiti Jeep


Thanks in part to a $10,000 gift from the Western Henrico Rotary Club, another bright pink Jeep modified to travel extremely rough terrain has been delivered to Midwives For Haiti so that more pregnant women in the quake-ravaged country will have access to prenatal care and a greater chance of surviving childbirth.

The funds were raised at the annual casino night held in February, club president Adam Cherry said. The Rotary Club also helped purchase the Virginia-based charity’s first pink jeep three years ago. > Read more.

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Entertainment

Weekend Top 10


Take in a show at several locations this weekend! West End Comedy will provide laughs at HATTheatre; the production of “Pump Boys and Dinettes” will close Sunday; and the youth theatre company CharacterWorks will present “Footloose” at The Steward School. Another show perfect for the kids – “Despicable Me 2” is playing at the Eastern Henrico Recreation Center tonight. For all our top picks this weekend, click here! > Read more.

Is there an Echo in here?

‘Earth to Echo’ aims to become this generation’s ‘ET’
It’s no secret that all found-footage genre movies are the same. Grab a couple of characters, give one of them a camera, and expose them to something supernatural that’s content to lurk just off-screen until the last five minutes. Everything else will just fall into place.

But that formula isn’t particularly family friendly, if only because that thing waiting a few feet to the left of the cast is usually plotting their violent doom.

That’s what sets Earth to Echo apart from the pack. It, too, follows a group of characters armed with a camera and a tendency to encounter unknown life forms. But all those familiar parts have been rearranged just enough to make it suitable for a much younger audience. > Read more.

Weekend Top 10


An eclectic array of events are taking place this weekend throughout the county. In the West End, we have the Richmond Wedding Expo, the Under the Stars Family Film Series and Henrico Theatre Company’s production of “Pump Boys and Dinettes.” In the eastern part of the county, we have a blood drive at the Eastern Henrico Recreation Center, Gallmeyer Farm’s annual Sweet Corn Festival and an origami workshop at Fairfield Library. For all our top picks this weekend, click here! > Read more.

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