Henrico County VA

Strikers, other soccer officials visit China

Chinese youngsters display the Richmond Strikers’ logo
during a recent visit to the country by a local contingent.
Six representatives from the Richmond Strikers and other area soccer programs flew halfway across the globe to train a Chinese youth soccer league last month.

According to Scott Turner, the Strikers’ executive director, the representatives wanted to reengage the Chinese youth in soccer because the nation has not embraced the sport as much as the U.S. in recent years.

“The Chinese had a great women’s program back in 1999, and they competed in the World Cup against the United States in the final. Since then, their program has gone down while ours has gone up,” said Turner. “So part of this cultural exchange [was because] they are worried about the direction of soccer in China. They want to know how we do it over here.”

As a response to this, 50 coaches and soccer players from the Shanghai Football Association (SFA) participated in a series of sessions and drills led by the representatives for seven and a half hours a day. The delegation leading the five-day sessions were staff members from the Strikers, VCU’s Sports Leadership Program, University of Richmond, and the Virginia Youth Soccer Association.

Among the areas that the delegation focused on with the youth and coaches were attacking and defending, goalkeeping, and sports psychology.

Turner pointed out that Chinese exercise more structured and systematic coaching methods, whereas the United States has a more flexible and interactive approach to coaching. He said that the nation’s strong focus on cultivating Olympic athletes at a young age accounts for the Chinese’s orderly and precise coaching style.

“Over here we want kids to enjoy the game. They’re not going to get good at it unless they love it. And so we tried to teach them how you engage kids on a personal relationship as opposed to a sort of dictatorial relationship,” Turner said.

The delegation completed this final phase of this year-long mission as a part of the Developing and Improving Synergies in Chinese and United States Soccer (DISCUSS) program. During the first phase of DISCUSS, Chinese coaches teamed up with VCU and the Strikers in Richmond to observe the way that U.S. coaches trained their young players so that they could bring new coaching techniques back to their country.

The DISCUSS program, founded two years ago, is a federally funded initiative created with the intent of bettering cultural relations between the United States and China through sport.

‘Secret Keeper Girl - Crazy Hair Tour’ returning to West End Assembly of God

Hundreds of 'tweens' and their moms will attend the Secret Keeper Girl Crazy Hair Tour at West End Assembly of God on Jan. 22 at 6:30 p.m., a popular Bible-based tour geared toward building and strengthening relationships between mothers and their daughters (typically ages 8 to 12).

The event will feature a full fashion show, oversized balloon sculptures and confetti cannons – all in the name of inner beauty, Biblical modesty and vibrant purity. > Read more.

OutRVA, ‘Say I Do!’ to give away all-expenses paid wedding at Lewis Ginter

OutRVA and Say I Do! have collaborated to offer LGBT couples an opportunity to win an all-expenses-paid wedding at Lewis Ginter Botanical Garden’s Robins Tea House on March 7.

In September, Richmond Region Tourism launched OutRVA, a campaign designed to show people Richmond’s strong LGBT community and highlight the area as a travel destination.

The winning couple will say "I do" in a ceremony coordinated by event designer and floral artist Casey Godlove of Strawberry Fields Flowers & Gifts and marriage concierge, Ayana Obika of All About The Journey. The couple will receive wardrobe and styling, a custom wedding cake, florals, an overnight stay at the Linden Row Inn (including a suite on the day of the wedding for preparation), and a post-wedding brunch at the Hilton Garden Inn on Sunday, March 8. > Read more.

No CVWMA collection delays for Lee-Jackson, MLK holidays

CVWMA residential recycling and trash collections will continue as regularly scheduled for the Lee-Jackson (Jan. 16) and Martin Luther King, Jr. Day (Jan. 19) holidays. Residential recycling collections on Friday, Jan. 16 and the week of Jan 19-23 will take place on normal collection day. Residents should place recycling container(s) out for pick-up by 7 a.m. on their regular scheduled collection day. > Read more.

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Weekend Top 10

For our Top 10 calendar events this weekend, click here! > Read more.

CAT Theatre announces auditions for ‘Quartet’

CAT Theatre will hold auditions for Quartet on Saturday, Feb. 21, from 4 p.m. to 7 p.m., and Sunday, Feb. 22, from 3 p.m. to 6 p.m. Auditions will be held at the theatre, located at 319 N. Wilkinson Road in Richmond. Quartet will run May 22 through June 6 and will close out CAT’s 51st season.

Director Laurie Follmer is seeking two males, ages 50-70 and two females ages 50-70. British accents are required for roles and are requested for auditions. There is no actual singing in the show. Singing ability and experience is not a requirement. Audition sides are available at http://www.cattheatre.com on the Audition Page. > Read more.

Restaurant watch

Find out how your favorite dining establishments fared during their most recent inspections by the Virginia Department of Health. > Read more.

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