Henrico County VA
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HCPS ‘Teacher of the Year,’ ‘First Year Teacher of the Year’ announced

Henrico County Public Schools recently named Taylor Snow, a social studies teacher at Moody Middle School, as the winner of the 2013 Gilman Teacher of the Year Award, and Alexandra Mendez- Zfass, a teacher at Highland Springs Elementary, as the winner of the First Year Teacher of the Year Award. The two were honored earlier this month at the 2013 Gilman Teacher of the Year Awards Ceremony held at Glen Allen High School.

Snow believes “outstanding teaching does not emanate from exhaustive reading of pedagogical texts or a process-oriented checklist. Rather, it emerges from a true passion for the act of learning and teaching.”

Speaking of Mendez-Zfass, HSES Principal Shawnya Tolliver said, “The passion and enthusiasm Alex brings to the classroom are captivating for her students and the adults who have the pleasure of working with her or observing her in action.”

Gilman Teacher of the Year is an annual event that rewards teachers from across the county for their commitment to education. Teachers are nominated by their schools, and a panel of administrators and specialists judges their applications. The group judges applications based on a point system for evidence of professional development, school/community activities in and outside of the classroom, participation in professional organizations, and a professional beliefs essay. Finally, five teachers (one from each magisterial district) are nominated for the Gilman Teacher of the Year honor. All five nominees undergo an interview with the panel, and the winner is declared.

The First-Year Teacher of the Year process begins with administrator and faculty nominations followed by an application and essay by the nominee. A committee of six administrators and specialists reviews applications before selecting a winner.


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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