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Lovettsville Invests In Its Future

February 3, 2016 Development 1 comment
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By Nathaniel Stephens

If you have not passed through Lovettsville lately then you may be surprised at the major facelift the town has received over the past year; and if you have, then you are more than acquainted with the traffic jams stemming from the work. That once sleepy little town, mere pit stop for commuters, is now busy with construction crews expanding roads. … Continue Reading

Plan To Reduce Congestion on I-66 Approved

January 7, 2016 Development Comments Off on Plan To Reduce Congestion on I-66 Approved
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The Commonwealth Transportation Board approved new travel choices to ease congestion and improve reliability on I-66 inside the Beltway during rush hours.  Improvements will move more people with fewer vehicles by increasing transit, carpooling and other multi-modal options and allowing single-occupant drivers access to the facility for a toll. 

“After years of exhaustive study and public input, we finally have a pragmatic solution that can be can be implemented quickly and provide real results to improve traffic flow on one of the nation’s most congested roadways,” said Transportation Secretary Aubrey Layne. “The CTB supported the McAuliffe administration’s proposal to deliver reasonable solutions to ease congestion in Northern Virginia.” … Continue Reading

Another Annexation Proposal in for Purcellville

December 2, 2015 Development, News 6 comments
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The Warner Brook Annexation proposal has been submitted to the Town of Purcellville, bringing the current annexation proposals to two.

The Warner Brook annexation proposal is for 131.29 acres. It is located across from Brookfield Mayfair (formerly Autumn Hill) and the address of the property is 17100 Purcellville Road. The property is currently in the county and is zoned JLMA-3 – one house per three acres. If developed at its current zoning it would allow for approximately 43 homes on the property.

The owners of the property are requesting an annexation into the Town of Purcellville for the available utilities which would allow the property to be developed at a much greater density. When community residents asked Jim Herbert, who is representing the owners, to develop the property by-right, he said that the owners want more money and are interested in more density on the property. This is the same answer that the representatives of the Kline property are giving. … Continue Reading

Save Old Town Purcellville Organizer Goes To Court December 4

December 2, 2015 Development, News Comments Off on Save Old Town Purcellville Organizer Goes To Court December 4
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Purcellville resident and 21st Street business owner Mary Ellen Stover is ready for the big day. Her attorney Frank Bredimus of Hamilton will be in Loudoun County Circuit Court Friday to argue her August 2015 appeal challenging the decisions of Purcellville’s Board of Zoning Appeals.

The BZA ruled that Town of Purcellville Zoning Administrator, Patrick Sullivan, was correct in his determination that the proposed Vineyard Square project had “commenced” when the developer tore down two small brick historic structures connected to the project. But, Stover’s attorney says the BZA failed to determine whether or not Patrick Sullivan had the authority and jurisdiction to administer and enforce Chapter 54 of the Town Code, which controls such issues. Bredimus will also argue the BZA failed to provide written notice to adjacent property owners, including Mary Ellen Stover as is required, as well as a number of other illegalities. … Continue Reading

Town of Leesburg To Celebrate Opening of Hope Parkway

December 1, 2015 Development, News Comments Off on Town of Leesburg To Celebrate Opening of Hope Parkway
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At 2:00 p.m. on Thursday, December 3, Leesburg Mayor Kristen Umstattd, members of the Town Council and representatives from Loudoun County, VDOT and K2M will celebrate the opening of Hope Parkway with a ribbon cutting ceremony. The ceremony will take place near the intersection of Hope Parkway and Oaklawn Drive.

Construction of the 1,400 linear foot extension of Hope Parkway, from Whipp Drive to Miller Drive, began in June 2015 and is completed less than a year after Governor McAuliffe announced the K2M Global Headquarters expansion. The total cost of construction was an estimated $1.8 million. The Virginia Department of Transportation provided an Economic Development Access Fund grant of $650,000 in conjunction with the construction of K2M’s new global headquarters facility. The Oaklawn development will reimburse the Town for the remaining costs of construction. The design engineer was Paciulli, Simmons & Associates, and the construction contractor was Phillips Construction, LLC. For more information about the project, visit the Town of Leesburg website at www.leesburgva.gov/government/departments/capital-projects/current-projects/streets/hope-parkway-extension.

Denstock Real Estate Investments Eyeing Property in Purcellville

November 4, 2015 Development, News Comments Off on Denstock Real Estate Investments Eyeing Property in Purcellville
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In October, Purcellville Vice Mayor Ben Packard disclosed that he and town council member Joan Lehr had met with Denstock Real Estate Investments of Charlottesville to discuss a potential new development near the western entrance to town.

The company is interested in the O’Toole property, located on Main Street across from Crooked Run Orchard. The company is looking into putting luxury apartments on the parcel, which also borders the Southern Collector Road.

Denstock Real Estate Investments describes their focus as “primarily [on] multifamily development,” building “Class A luxury communities.” Per its website, the company claims to have “created significant value for both our investors and our residents,” focusing on establishing apartments near medical facilities.

Other Denstock developments include the 170-unit Meadow Branch Apartments complex in Winchester (under construction), the 155-unit Stonegate Apartments at Zion Crossroads, the 204-unit Apartments at Goose Creek in Fishersville (under construction) and the 348-unit Lakeside Apartments in Charlottesville.

Purcellville Crossroads Proposal Moves Forward

November 4, 2015 Development, News Comments Off on Purcellville Crossroads Proposal Moves Forward
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In early October, Vice Mayor Ben Packard proposed to put the Purcellville Crossroads Application on the October 27 Town Council Work Session Agenda for discussion. His reason for doing so was to have any additional questions answered so council could make a decision on whether or not to annex the property. Typically, it is the applicant that requests this process.

Background

Pleasants Kline, along with two other property owners, is requesting that Purcellville annex and bring into town approximately 50.4 acres of farmland rezoned for residential use. The property is currently within the Purcellville/County Joint Land Management area and zoned JLMA-3 (one house per three acres). It is located at the northwest corner of the intersection of Berlin Turnpike (Route 287) and Harry Byrd Highway (Route 7) and along St. Francis Court. … Continue Reading

Defiant Planning Commission Sends Zoning Changes To Town Council

September 30, 2015 Development, News 1 comment
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In a dramatic 5-1-1 vote, the Purcellville Planning Commission has put the ball squarely in the Purcellville Town Council’s court, recommending dozens of sweeping zoning changes fought for tooth and nail by developers. The vote shifts the focus of the debate from the Planning Commission to Town Council meetings and public hearings scheduled to start in October.

Planning Commissioner Nedim Ogelman was the sole dissenter in the Planning Commission’s dramatic volley, voting no on the proposed changes. Planning Commissioners Chip Paciulli, Theresa Stein, Edward Van Istendal, Doug McCollum and Gil Paist, voted yes, with planning commissioner Chris Bledsoe absent for the vote.

At the Planning Commission public hearing Mayor Kwasi Fraser said, “A vast majority of the proposed changes will increase the value of a few property owners by granting by right use…while other citizens will lose out on the ability to obtain value added conditions for development that might compliment the lifestyles and environment they cherish in Purcellville … the majority of the residents with whom I have spoken … are recommending that we suspend making these drastic changes to the zoning uses … all energy should be on the Comprehensive Plan review; you have the attention of the citizens so let’s do it.”

A few of the changes proposed by the Planning Commission include:

  • Allowing completely new uses in select districts.
  • Eliminating Special Use Permits for many uses.
  • Increasing limits on restaurant size.
  • Adding big box retail up to 10,000 square feet to the C-4 and C-1 Districts to name a few.

Noted dissenting commissioner Nedim Ogelman, “We said we would not change the purposes of the districts to avoid claims we are engaging in rezoning, yet the draft ordinance amendment before us … is essentially rezoning … We are tasked with advising the Town Council on planning issues. My advice to the Town Council is to listen to what citizens have been telling us in our information sessions, through correspondence, in our public hearing, and in the town survey … that we table the draft zoning use changes until after we have a Comprehensive Plan Review.”
Many citizens spoke at the Planning Commission public hearing including Ed Need who highlighted the negative effects of rezoning.

Developer interests, however, presented a very different point of view. Attorney Mark Nelis, representing Jiffy Lube and others continued to press for a reduction in the number of zoning districts and a reduction in the number of special use permits required for various uses; the goal? – to save his clients time and money.

At the Town Council work session in late September, Councilmember Ben Packard made a motion to put the proposed zoning changes on the Oct. 13 town council meeting agenda.

Mayor Kwasi Fraser and Councilmember Karen Jimmerson objected, with the mayor noting that over the last three months he had sent numerous questions about the Planning Commission’s long list of zoning changes to Commissioner Gil Paist, but, had received no answers.

Said Mayor Fraser “ … we have a Planning Commission that refuses to answer fundamental questions about the economic, social, and environmental impacts of their recommended zoning use changes … There seems to be this continuous push to erect buildings without careful thought about supporting infrastructure and the impact to the surrounding environment … experts in the field of town planning warn [that] it is poor practice and could result in legal trouble for a community to adopt a zoning ordinance first and then write up a town plan.”

Planning Commissioner Nedim Ogelman, town council member Karen Jimmerson, Mayor Fraser and others are also expected to continue to push for a thorough Comprehensive Plan review before any major zoning changes are put in place.

PDH Districts Go Down, More Big Box Stores and Restaurants

August 7, 2015 Development, News Comments Off on PDH Districts Go Down, More Big Box Stores and Restaurants
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You win some you lose some. But, citizens participating in three days of Purcellville Planning Commission public input sessions held their own in expressing concerns about the large number of town zoning use changes being proposed by the commission.
With more than 200 zoning regulations up for debate – covering everything from alterations to the purpose of the Planned Development Housing Districts (PDH) to additional permitted uses in the Commercial, Mixed-Use Commercial, Industrial and other designations – the tenor of the three public input sessions – held July 7, 8 and 9 – reflected the polarized zoning debate taking place in Purcellville, pitting the preferences of most citizens against the special interests of a few. … Continue Reading

Purcellville Crossroads Developers Seek 50+-Acre Annexation

August 7, 2015 Development, News Comments Off on Purcellville Crossroads Developers Seek 50+-Acre Annexation
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Developers are requesting that some 50 acres at the intersection of Route 287 and St. Francis Court be annexed into the Town of Purcellville for the purpose of developing an intensive residential and commercial project known as Purcellville Crossroads. Proposed in conjunction with the Tilly’s Entertainment Company, the development would bring in dense commercial and residential uses – including national chain restaurants, a hotel, go-carts, commuter parking and other uses. The area is now predominated by 3-acre residential properties, and farms and wineries consistent with distinctly rural uses. As such, Purcellville Crossroads is drawing the ire of the homeowners and rural businesses in the area. … Continue Reading

“Future Developers Must Follow The Rules Of Law Set Forth In Our Town” Citizen Activist Challenges Vineyard Square Development

July 1, 2015 Development, News Comments Off on “Future Developers Must Follow The Rules Of Law Set Forth In Our Town” Citizen Activist Challenges Vineyard Square Development
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– By Andrea Gaines

Purcellville resident and businesswoman Mary Ellen Stover addressed citizens June 27, as she explained her legal challenge to Purcellville Zoning Administrator Patrick Sullivan’s decision to let the historic downtown project known as Vineyard Square proceed, despite at least two expired Certificate of Design Approval permits.

Stover’s antique shop, Mary Ellen Stover Antiques, is located in a part of historic downtown Purcellville that will be directly impacted by the 5-6 story, mixed-use Vineyard Square development. But, according to Stover, while she opposes the project on principle, believing that its size and scope is inappropriate for the spot and incompatible for historic downtown, the essence of her legal challenge centers on the special treatment being given to developers John Chapman and Mark Nelis.

… Continue Reading

Stage Is Set For Purcellville’s July 7, 8, 9 Zoning Debate

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No-Size-Limit Big Box Stores, By-Right Drive-Thrus And More On Developers’ Wish List

The Purcellville Planning Commission has finalized its agenda for the approximately 229 zoning regulations that will be the subject of three major public input sessions in early July.

The commission’s agenda ranges from uses that will remain unchanged in residential, commercial and industrial zones, to new uses that would now fall into the by-right category, eliminating requirements for public input before a particular project can proceed. These by-right uses include drive-thrus, no-size-limit big box stores, and high-density town center-style developments.

… Continue Reading

Public Asked To Weigh in on Developer Demands for Sweeping Changes to Zoning Map

June 3, 2015 Development, News Comments Off on Public Asked To Weigh in on Developer Demands for Sweeping Changes to Zoning Map
town of purcellville sign

Expanded Big Box Stores, By Right Drive-Thrus, Data Centers and More on Planning Commissioner’s Agenda

Purcellville Planning Commission Chairman Gilbert Paist – under significant pressure from Mayor Kwasi Fraser, Town Council member Karen Jimmerson, Planning Commissioner Nedim Ogelman and others – is asking for public input on a long and increasingly aggressive list of developer demands for sweeping changes to town zoning regulations.

Paist, serving on the Planning Commission since 2011 and as chairman since 2014, is viewed by the preservation community as decidedly pro-developer, as are many long-standing members of both the Planning Commission and the Purcellville Town Council. … Continue Reading


 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Columns

Superforecasting a Book Review

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The book “Superforecasting” by Philip Tetlock and Dan Gardner contains a nearly complete list of the attributes of superforecasting, as well as critical thinking. Tetlock’s research empirically confirms the aspects of critical thinking I’ve been discussing in this column. Their …

Pokémon GO: A Fun New Gaming App or an Accidental Treatment?

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Penicillin was accidently discovered in 1928 when scientist Alexander Fleming returned to his lab from vacation to notice that a strange fungus growing on a culture had killed off the neighboring bacteria. After WWII, psychiatrist and researcher, Dr. John Cade, …

Brotherly Love

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– By Samuel Moore-Sobel There he was. A small, innocent being entering the world for the very first time. Can I touch him? Nervously, I lean forward. He seems so perfect, so completely serene. He is loved instantly. The last …

To The Teen Who Feels Alone

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– By Mary Rose Lunde I’m going to do something real here and be honest for a second. In a society where telling someone your deep emotional feelings is considered weak, doing just that seems to be detrimental and could …

Unmotivated Teen

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– By Michael Oberschneider, Psy.D. Dr. Mike, At our insistence, our 17-year-old son is going to get a summer job. Well, that’s what he agreed to, but we are two weeks into the summer and guess what … he doesn’t …

Time To Add Discipline To Your Good Money Habits

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– By Amy and Dan Smith For many, their 30’s is a time to build a family and a stronger financial future That 30th birthday can be a somewhat traumatic event, but with people living longer, they say 50 is …

Student News

Congratulations, Class of 2016

6 Jul 2016

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Woodgrove High School’s Class Of 2016 Graduation – By Amanda Clark On June 16, Woodgrove’s Class of 2016 was the 5th graduating class to walk the stage and accept their diploma. The ceremony was filled with anticipation as the chorus, …

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Buckland Earns Degree In Medicine

6 Jul 2016

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Molly Buckland, D.O., graduated from the West Virginia School of Osteopathic Medicine with a degree of Doctor of Osteopathic Medicine on May 28. While at WVSOM, Dr. Buckland received the Dr. Roland P. Sharp President’s Award and the James R. …

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Adams Promoted To Lieutenant

6 Jul 2016

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Lt. James Adams, from Sterling and a Potomac Falls Halls Graduate, earned the promotion to the rank of Lieutenant. Adams is a Navy Week and Executive Outreach Planner for the Navy Office of Community Outreach in Millington, Tennessee. U.S. Navy …

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Calendar

July 2016
M T W T F S S
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Bingo at St. Francis de Sale Catholic Church

It’s a Beach Thing . . . featuring lamp-work glass artist Julie Bahun and abstract painter Karen Hutchison

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Bingo at St. Francis de Sale Catholic Church

It’s a Beach Thing . . . featuring lamp-work glass artist Julie Bahun and abstract painter Karen Hutchison

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Bingo at St. Francis de Sale Catholic Church

It’s a Beach Thing . . . featuring lamp-work glass artist Julie Bahun and abstract painter Karen Hutchison

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Bingo at St. Francis de Sale Catholic Church

It’s a Beach Thing . . . featuring lamp-work glass artist Julie Bahun and abstract painter Karen Hutchison

1

Bingo at St. Francis de Sale Catholic Church

Dancing Through Color

TGIF - Jake & the Burtones

2

Bingo at St. Francis de Sale Catholic Church

Dancing Through Color

Ken Wenzel Live at North Gate Vineyard

Notaviva Vineyards - Bluegrass Jam - FREE event

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Bingo at St. Francis de Sale Catholic Church

Dancing Through Color

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Bingo at St. Francis de Sale Catholic Church

Dancing Through Color

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Bingo at St. Francis de Sale Catholic Church

Dancing Through Color

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Bingo at St. Francis de Sale Catholic Church

Dancing Through Color

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Bingo at St. Francis de Sale Catholic Church

Dancing Through Color

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Bingo at St. Francis de Sale Catholic Church

Dancing Through Color

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Bingo at St. Francis de Sale Catholic Church

Dancing Through Color

Yard Sale Benefiting EPIC

10

Bingo at St. Francis de Sale Catholic Church

Dancing Through Color

Moon Music Live at North Gate Vineyard

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Bingo at St. Francis de Sale Catholic Church

Dancing Through Color

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Bingo at St. Francis de Sale Catholic Church

Dancing Through Color

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Bingo at St. Francis de Sale Catholic Church

Dancing Through Color

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Bingo at St. Francis de Sale Catholic Church

Dancing Through Color

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Bingo at St. Francis de Sale Catholic Church

Dancing Through Color

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Bingo at St. Francis de Sale Catholic Church

Dancing Through Color

Dear Creek Live at North Gate Vineyard

17

Bingo at St. Francis de Sale Catholic Church

Dancing Through Color

Quentin Walston Live at North Gate Vineyard

18

Bingo at St. Francis de Sale Catholic Church

Dancing Through Color

19

Bingo at St. Francis de Sale Catholic Church

Dancing Through Color

Paint Your Pint

20

Bingo at St. Francis de Sale Catholic Church

Dancing Through Color

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Bingo at St. Francis de Sale Catholic Church

Dancing Through Color

22

Bingo at St. Francis de Sale Catholic Church

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Bingo at St. Francis de Sale Catholic Church

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Bingo at St. Francis de Sale Catholic Church

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Bingo at St. Francis de Sale Catholic Church

Dancing Through Color

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Lifestyle

Farmers Urged To Be on the Lookout for Marijuana

23 Jul 2016

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Farmers in Southwest Virginia are being urged to check their property for marijuana planted by trespassers. Within the past year, hundreds of marijuana plants have been discovered between rows of hay bales on farms in and around Pulaski County, according to the Claytor Lake Regional Drug Task Force. “Unfortunately this is a growing trend,” said Corporal Barbara Owens of the …

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Bluemont Harvest Ball To Be Held on September 17 in Warrenton

20 Jul 2016

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To commemorate the organization’s 40th Anniversary, Bluemont has announces the first ever Bluemont Harvest Ball, to be held on September 17 from 6:30 pm to 11:00 p.m. on Main Street in downtown Warrantor. This black tie event will feature live music from the Silver Tones Swing Band, dancing, a four-course, seated dinner, an open bar, and a silent auction. Tickets …

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What Do You Do To Stay Cool?

7 Jul 2016

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– By Amanda Clark “To chill out this summer I will spend a lot of my time playing music. During the summer, I have so much free time and I devote as much of it as I can to playing music.” – Michael Preston (Lovettsville) “To chill out this summer I will go to a friend’s house and borrow their …

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Editorial

Grief and Greed

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By Matthew Parse What would drive a single individual to cause so much emotional stress and financial burden on hundreds, if not, thousands of families? What would drive the Town …

Op-ed

Opinion: Terrorism, Debt, and China: Oh My!

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– By Nick Reid world can be a very dangerous place sometimes, especially for a nation state such as the United States. Although danger is always present, the number and …

Metro Money Mess Pushing West

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– By Delegate Dave LaRock (R-33rd) A local paper recently quoted Loudoun Board Chair Phyllis Randall as saying that in her observation “some of the concerns raised by the people …

Dear Editor

Lessons from Short Hill

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It’s been a little over two weeks since the Commission Permit for the proposed AT&T facility on Short Hill was overruled by the Board of Supervisors. This is just about …

Thank You

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Dear Citizens of Purcellville: As your town council member it is my vision and priority that you feel welcome at your Town Hall and take part in shaping Purcellville’s future …

View From the Ridge

An Open Letter to the Citizens of Purcellville

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Mark Your Calendar, They’ve Asked for Our Input So Let’s Give It To Them By Steady and Nobull The Purcellville Planning Commission has tentatively scheduled a series of public input …

Around Virginia

Blood Donors Asked To Help Address Summer Shortage

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Virginia Blood Services is urging Virginians to help replenish an extremely low summer blood supply and asking eligible donors to visit any one of its area Community Donor Centers or mobile blood drives. “Summer is always a challenging time for blood collections,” says Virginia Blood Services Executive Director, Todd Cahill. …

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McAuliffe Announces New Exports for Virginia Lumber Companies To the United Kingdom

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Governor Terry McAuliffe announced new export sales of Virginia wood products to the United Kingdom (U.K.) during a trade and marketing mission to Israel and the U.K. The sales were struck between four Virginia lumber companies and James Latham PLC, one of the oldest and largest wood importers and distributors …

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Governor McAuliffe Announces 105 New Jobs in the Town of Berryville and Clarke County

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Handsome Brook Farm, LLC to Invest More Than $6 Million to Establish Egg Processing Operation in Virginia RICHMOND – Governor Terry McAuliffe today announced that New York-based Handsome Brook Farm, LLC will invest $6.4 million to establish a new pasture raised egg processing operation in the Town of Berryville and …

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Sports

Registration Open For Ida Lee’s Fall NFL Flag Football

7 Jul 2016

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Ida Lee’s Fall 2016 NFL Flag Football League will begin with player evaluations on Saturday and Sunday, July 30 and 31.  Players must be registered by Tuesday, July 26, to participate. This fall, Ida Lee’s Leesburg NFL Flag Football House League will have the following age groups:  6-7; 8-9; 10-11; …

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Everyone’s Getting Into Cannons Action!

6 Jul 2016

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Purcellville Cannons? Baseball July Schedule July 9, 7 p.m. at home Covington? July 12, 7 p.m. away Winchester? July 13, 7:30 p.m. Harrisonburg? July 14, 7 p.m. at home Strasburg? July 15, 7 p.m. at home Woodstock? July 16, 7 p.m. away Front Royal? July 17, 7 p.m. at home …

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