Henrico County VA

The Citizen Finds Out

What is the longest continuously licensed business in Henrico County?
The Henrico County Division of Finance began keeping business records in 1953. There are currently three active, licensable businesses located in Henrico County that reported being in existence in Henrico prior to that time.

The first is Southern States Cooperative. Originally called the Virginia Seed Service (VSS), this business was created by approximately 150 farmers who were dissatisfied with their inability to buy seed that was guaranteed to grow in the Commonwealth of Virginia. The farmers met in Richmond in 1923 and decided to pool resources in order to procure seeds that were better suited to Virginia’s growing conditions; the distribution of these seeds began in 1925. By the 1930s, the business was beginning to look beyond the state lines of Virginia and consequently changed its name to Southern States Cooperative. Having maintained the same name since then, Southern State Cooperative is currently one of the largest farmer cooperatives in the nation.

The second is The Westwood Club, which originated in the late 1920s as the Westwood Golf Club. Several name changes followed: in the 1930s it became the Westwood Supper Club and in the 1940s it was known as The Officer’s Club of Virginia. Finally, on Sept. 20, 1994, the Board of Directors voted to officially change the country club’s name to The Westwood Club.

The third is Bill’s Barbecue, which was founded on June 2, 1930 by William Stevens Richardson in Norfolk. The following year, 1931, Bill’s moved to Henrico County and has since remained a one-family owned and operated business. Today, Richardson’s daughter, Rhonda R. Elliott, runs the restaurant. Bill’s “claim to fame” is the minced pork barbecue, along with the freshly squeezed limeade and homemade chocolate pie.
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

Weekend Top 10


It’s Halloween! Ghosts and goblins are everywhere…especially at Dorey Park’s Monster Mash and the annual Pumpkin Festival at Gayton Crossing Shopping Center. But don’t let the fun stop on the 31st – the Latin Ballet of Virginia will present El Dia de los Muertos Family Festival on Nov. 1. And if you need a break from the candy, enjoy some classical music at the University of Richmond and the Weinstein JCC on Sunday. For all our top picks this weekend, click here! > Read more.

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.

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Virginia Opera will present “The Empress and the Nightingale” at 3 p.m. at Weinstein JCC. This adaptation of Hans Christian Andersen’s classic of the same name is a children’s story… Full text

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