Loudoun Workforce Resource Center Presents STEM Career Fair March 28

Anyone interested in a career in the rapidly growing field of STEM (Science, Technology, Engineering and Math) is encouraged to attend an upcoming STEM Career Fair in Loudoun.

The Loudoun Workforce Resource Center, in partnership with Northern Virginia Community College (NVCC)’s Loudoun campus and NOVA SySTEMic Solutions, is holding a STEM Career Fair Tuesday, March 28, from 1:00 to 4:00 p.m. in the Higher Education Center on NVCC’s Loudoun campus, 21200 Campus Drive in Sterling.

More than 20 employers will be attending to recruit for entry-, mid- and senior-level science, technology, engineering and math/banking positions. According to the Virginia Employment Commission, the professional, scientific and technical services sector is one of the fastest growing in Northern Virginia.

Those interested in attending the STEM Career Fair are encouraged to register for the “Ready, Set, Go to the Career Fair!” workshop on Tuesday, March 21, 2017, and the Mock Interviews workshop on Thursday, March 23. Both workshops will be held at the Loudoun Workforce Resource Center, 102 Heritage Way, N.E. in Leesburg. Participants may register online for these and other workshops at www.loudoun.gov/wrcworkshops.

To learn more about Loudoun Workforce Resource Center programs and services, visit www.loudoun.gov/wrc.

Keep Loudoun Beautiful—Greater Lovettsville Area Volunteers Needed

The Keep Loudoun Beautiful spring clean-up takes place the entire month of April and greater Lovettsville needs volunteers. Bags, vests, gloves and grabbers are available at the Lovettsville Community Center during normal business hours, Monday-Friday. This is a great group or individual activity that can be scheduled around your availability. E-mail Lovettsville Area Leader, Laura Lieberman, for details and to coordinate pick-up locations: laura.long.lieberman@gmail.com

National Awkward Moments Day

?Laughing at Yourself Is the Best Medicine

No one knows who invented National Awkward Moments Day, Saturday, March 18.

That’s no surprise, since it probably came about as the result of one stunningly awkward moment that the owner of that moment was hoping to forget.
We surveyed our readers and friends to ask them about their most awkward moments, sharing our own silliness to give others the courage to share theirs. As it turns out, lots of people assume that they are the only ones with a history of awkward moments.

That’s not really true. Awkward moments are … everywhere. Here is a treasure trove of the greatly embarrassing times that our friends and readers shared with us:

Pad Thai It’s Not: “So, I went by myself to my favorite Thai restaurant – feeling very proud of my courage and independence. I ordered something completely new off the menu. Why not, I thought. When my meal arrived, I did my best to look like I knew what I was doing – but, oh boy, was that stuff hot! The waitress noticed my distress, and, approaching my table, whispered, ‘You are eating the condiments tray … your meal is not out of kitchen yet.’

Anne Klein She’s Not: “Getting back to my office after a major marketing presentation for a big fashion company, I sat down at my desk, put my feet up, and exclaimed, ‘Whew! Glad that’s over!’ Pointing at my feet and laughing hysterically, my office mate screamed: ‘You wore those to a fashion presentation?’ Looking down, I realized I’d worn shoes from two entirely different pairs.”

Slipping Wet: “Running through the rain to get to work, I arrived at my office, and ceremoniously yanked off my soaking wet coat … only to find I had completely forgotten to put a dress on, and was standing there for all to see in a soaking wet slip.”

Groucho Marx To The Max: “I tried to dye my own eyebrows at home to save money. I was watching my grandkids that day, and got distracted. Twenty minutes of recommended dying time turned into almost an hour. By the time I realized this and looked into the mirror, it was all over. Groucho Marx brows all the way.”

Green Cheeks: “Getting ready to go out shopping with my young son, I decided to put a face mask on for a few minutes. Running low on time, I put the mask – bright green in color – just on my forehead, nose, and cheeks. Arriving home after a full day of shopping, I looked into mirror and realized I had completely forgotten that the mask was still on … and had been, all, day, long.”

Flying Escargot: “I worked at a posh restaurant on Capitol Hill. One of my customers ordered escargot, snails in garlic butter. She was having trouble getting the snail out of the shell. I told her to ‘hold the shell while I pry it out …’ That worked, but too well. Free of the shell the snail launched itself across the dining room, bouncing off another customer’s forehead. Oh, la la!”

Remember that National Awkward Moments Day is Saturday, March 18. Have a good laugh at yourself – enjoy!

Journey through Grief

This six-week educational, discussion-oriented series focuses on growth through grief and is designed for any person who has experienced the loss of a loved one. Tuesdays, March 21 – April 25, 2:00 – 4:30 p.m., Blue Ridge Hospice, 1025 W. Main Street in Berryville. *Pre-registration is required.  $25 fee to cover cost of book and handouts. Call 540-313-9200 to register.

Ready To Bloom in Round Hill

By Hannah Hager
March is a month for the imaginative. It’s not exactly the prettiest time of year to scout out properties when looking to set down roots somewhere new. Most of the lawns will appear naked; devoid of trees, the flower beds will be bare and the bushes won’t be in bloom.

It takes curiosity and vision to see a new home’s potential. This is not dissimilar of a skill required of anyone who is trying on the bones of new place to see how it fits within the whole body of your life.

Luckily, this 117-year-old home has a built-in track record. Not only has it been lovingly maintained through the centuries by conscientious caretakers, but it just so happens it sits on some of the most beautiful countryside in Virginia. With a Round Hill address, it’s situated in the foothills of the Blue Ridge Mountains and is one of the last stops en route to the Shenandoah Valley. The address is the very definition of God’s country.

The home itself is a reflection therein – you’ll find yourself saying, “They just don’t make ‘em like they used to,” and you’ll be right. It’s evident in the knotty pine hardwood floors and curved banister in the foyer and the exposed beam ceilings and stone fireplace in the family room. It’s apparent in the wainscoting, the trim and even the light fixtures.

The details that tell the story of this turn-of-the-century home are evident, but they don’t overshadow its general sentiment. The craftsmanship executed when updating, maintaining and modernizing the house is bar none. Put simply, it’s hard to believe this house permits any kind of draft to pass through its windows or doors despite its age. It goes without saying this is a balance that is hard to strike, much less upkeep.

White cabinets offset the stainless-steel appliances in the kitchen. French doors and updated floor-to-ceiling windows welcome an abundance of sunlight. The upstairs bedrooms are cozy and a second-story patio provides a private quiet space for enjoying a beverage of your choice. If you’re feeling social, however, you could always join the others around the fire pit in your backyard.

It might be hard to envision these possibilities as you tread through the last of winter. But, good things come to those who wait … and to those who see the potential of a place before it comes to full bloom.

Address: 35169 Harry Byrd Hwy, Round Hill
Bedrooms: Four bedrooms
Bathrooms: Two full and one half bathrooms
Year Built: 1900
Acreage: 4 acres
List Price: $649,500
Agent: Marcy Cantatore
Phone: 540-553-7453

Color Me Anything, But Color Me Beautiful

Thoughts on Garden Colors

Where does your spring garden’s color pallet lie – and what will your emerging annuals and summer blooms reveal? Will it punctuate its early displays with the warm yellow of a happy daffodil and cool purple of scattered crocuses, or the fresh and sassy vermillion of a shaded helioborus? Will orange-toned foxglove contrast with a sweeping, bright-white mock orange, or will you experiment with towering hollyhocks and dancing bachelor buttons?

As the cold white of winter fades and spring’s color begins to emerge, we’re all out there combing the local nurseries for that dramatic new plant – something to cut for the house or boast about to our friends.

But, think about this, and, do something new. Focus on one of your favorite flowers and why you like their color. Then, let your mind wander a bit.
What if your garden were a sea of tall bright whites and various shades of green – relatively monochromatic but with the occasion splash of deep blue or red?

How about companion colors? Two colors close to each other on the color wheel, but different – a red and a pink, a blue and purple, a yellow and orange – or dark and light colors of the same hue?

What if you went cool and pale – pinks, baby blue, light green and soft yellows.?Or, what if you went out and a limb – spicy hot and a little wild – with reds, yellows and orange, and salmon.

If all of this is too far out – too much change – think about the cut flowers you tend to buy at the grocery store, the colors you like. Consider planting in these colors as a way to experiment with something new.

The most interesting and beautiful gardens surprise and satisfy. So, color it up. Color it something beautiful.

Emma Clifton Makes Dean’s List

Emma Clifton of Leesburg, has been named to the Dean’s List for the Fall 2016 semester at Hillsdale College in Michigan. Clifton is a freshman with a double major in Latin and Applied Math. She has also been invited to join the national classical studies honorary Eta Sigma Phi and the national mathematics honor society Kappa Mu Epsilon.  Clifton is pictured with the bust of Julius Caesar in the Classics Reading Room at Hillsdale College.

Artsy Things To Do Inside …

There is big news in the New York art world – and art worlds everywhere.

The great Metropolitan Museum of Art in New York – “The Met” as it is known – is releasing 375,000 images of “public domain” art from its incomparable collection … in partnership with the website powerhouse Wikimedia.

Art lovers, educators, parents stuck inside with bored kids – or people who just want to expand their horizons – can now open up their computer, go to metmuseum.org/art/collection, and search away through some of the most cherished pieces of art the world has to offer.

We did a Met search and found this beautiful-in-blue image of a painting by Reginald Pollack, who lived for a time in Loudoun County. We searched through our favorites – old masters, impressionists, sculptures, anything we could think of. So much to see.

Per the museum’s website, “ … images of the Met’s public domain artwork will be freely available online to be reused for any purpose, without restriction under copyright law.” What a treasure. Take advantage of it.

Loudoun Library Events Focus on Women in Science and Technology

In honor of Women’s History Month, a series of March events in the Loudoun County Public Library system will focus on women in science and technology.

Hala Ayala, a cybersecurity specialist for the Department of Homeland Security, will explore opportunities and challenges in the tech industry with teens and adults in two programs: Monday, March 6, 7:30 p.m., at Ashburn Library, and Saturday, March 18, 2:00 p.m., at Rust Library. Ayala has more than 15 years of technology industry experience, is the mother of two, and an avid community advocate. The founder and President of the Prince William County chapter of the National Organization for Women, she advocates for women through grassroots activism and community education.

Cybersecurity expert Sushila Nair will share tips for getting ahead in a STEM-related field for teens and adults on Thursday, March 16, 7:00 p.m., at Cascades Library, and Tuesday, March 28, 7:00 p.m., at Gum Spring Library. Nair holds an honors degree in engineering and has 20 years of experience in computing infrastructure, business and computer security in diverse areas, including telecommunications, risk analysis, and credit card fraud.

There also will be a program focusing on hands-on STEM activities for the whole family on Wednesday, March 22, 6:30 p.m., at Sterling Library.

A “make your own ice cream” program for teens will honor Nancy Johnson, the inventor of the first hand-cranked ice cream machine in 1843 on Thursday, March 30, 5:30 p.m. at the Rust Library Teen Center in Leesburg.

Talk on C&O Canal Navigation at Opening of Civil War

On Sunday, March 12, the Lovettsville Historical Society will continue its 2017 Lecture Series with a presentation by historian Tim Snyder on the role of the C&O Canal during the opening phase of the Civil War.

One week after secessionists fired upon Fort Sumter on April 12, 1861, Confederate forces seized the U.S. federal arsenal at Harpers Ferry. Some of these Confederates then undertook to seize a boatload of grain being shipped from Charles F. Wenner’s warehouse in Berlin (Brunswick) to Georgetown. On April 24, at Point of Rocks, the Confederates forcibly boarded Wenner’s canal boat and seized his grain – triggering a protest and demand for compensation issued by the Governor of Maryland to the Governor of Virginia. Eventually, Virginia did compensate Wenner, who happened to be a Lovettsville native.

Tim Snyder, author of Trembling in the Balance: the Chesapeake and Ohio Canal during the Civil War, plus many articles in Maryland historical journals, will explore the importance of navigation along the C&O Canal before and during the Civil War. He will also discuss how the C&O Canal became an object of contention between the Union and Confederate Armies early in the war.

The program will be held at St. James United Church of Christ, 10 East Broad Way in Lovettsville, at 2:00 p.m.   Admission is free, but donations are welcome to defray expenses of the program and to support the activities of the Lovettsville Historical Society.

LCSO Announces Project Emergency Response

The Loudoun County Sheriff’s Office, in partnership with Loudoun County Public Schools, has developed a pilot program to assist emergency responders and individuals with Autism and their families to successfully manage emergency situations.

The program, called Project Emergency Response, will allow family members and other caregivers to provide crucial information about their loved ones to first responders. The information will be utilized by first responders to properly respond to the Autistic child or adult with details about proper interaction and care.

The program will be introduced to residents in the Sterling area on Thursday, February 23 at 10:00 a.m. at Seneca Ridge Middle School and again at 6:00 p.m. at Dominion High School.

Residents will also have an opportunity to learn about Project Lifesaver. The Project Lifesaver program is an electronic based tracking system for people with medical conditions such as Alzheimer’s, Autism, or other conditions, that have a tendency to wander from home and become lost. The program allows Loudoun Deputies certified as Electronic Search Specialists to fit clients with a wristband transmitter that emits an automatic tracking signal. If the client becomes lost, the specially trained deputies will use a mobile antenna and hand-held directional device to help locate the client.

Residents who are interested in attending either meeting are asked to register by calling 571-252-6540 or by clicking here.

Hillsboro Plans Mardi Gras Celebration on February 25

Mardi Gras celebration will be held in Hillsboro on Saturday, February 25 as a benefit for the Old Stone Schoolhouse. The event will begin at 7:30 p.m.

Hurricanes and New Orleans drinks, as well as Old 690 beer and local wines will be served in the Garden District Bar. The Cajun Cafe will feature New Orleans cuisine, including King Cakes. Music for dancing to New Orleans Jazz will be supplied by the disk jockey Ben Ortiz.

There will be a best costume prize and a silent auction.

Four Young Historians Discuss Civil War Turning Points

The Mosby Heritage Area Association will hold a talk featuring a panel of four young historians who will discuss turning points in the Civil War. The talk will be held at Unison Methodist Church, 21148 Unison Road, Middleburg, from 2:00 to 4:00 p.m. on Sunday, February 12. Tickets will be sold at the door or online at www.mosbyheritagearea.org/events for $15 each. These young historians/scholars/authors are members of the group “Emerging Civil War,” and provide fresh perspectives on the Civil War, 152 years after the fact.