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Coo-Coo for Cah-COW

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Chocolate – the mind-blowing substance we coax out of the modest cacao bean – is everywhere this time of year. Wafting past our noses from the cake in the oven. Showing up as cookie crumbs in the pockets of our jeans. Catching our eye as those skinnier-than-skinny office mates pop yet more malted milk balls in their mouths. We’re obsessed with this bean, it’s true. We celebrate Chocolate Mint Day on February 19, Chocolate Mousse Day on May 2, and Chocolate Milk Day on July 28. According to an organization called Farm Flavor, there are in fact 30 different dates set aside to pay homage to our love of chocolate. But, here at the Blue Ridge Leader, we are partial to the granddaddy of them all: America’s official Chocolate-Covered Anything Day, which is celebrated on December 16. In celebration of the holidays and this sacred substance, we present to you three tantalizing ways to enjoy the taste of chocolate this month, and any day of the year. … Continue Reading

Here’s To Equal Ice Cream Rights For All

July 6, 2016 Dine With Us, Lifestyle Comments Off on Here’s To Equal Ice Cream Rights For All
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Check me on this. But, isn’t it true that a great big spoonful of ice cream would taste just magnificent right now?

July is National Ice Cream Month, and we Americans have a long and personal history with ice cream – and with the patents to prove it. So, let’s celebrate.

A Brief History Of Ice Cream
According to The Farmer’s Almanac, Emperor Nero enjoyed something like ice cream – shaved ice mixed with fruit. China’s royalty is reported to have enjoyed a dish made with heated, fermented milk, flour and camphor (a spice with a sweet licorice-like flavor). And, ice cream-like deserts were also popular with American colonists, who brought it over from Europe, the nations of which had probably gotten their ice cream basics from either Asia or the Middle East.

But, it was a Ms. Nancy Johnson of Philadelphia who deserves to have ice cream month – and the last century and a half of ice cream consumption – named after her. Johnson patented what she called her “artificial freezer” in 1843 – the basic mechanisms of which used a tub, an inner cylinder, a lid, a crank and a “dasher” (moves the mixture around in the cylinder as it freezes) to create the sweet delight we call ice cream, today.

A Baltimore Maryland dairyman named Jacob Fussell is known as the father of the wholesale ice cream industry, he opened the first commercial ice cream factory in 1851. Italian immigrant Italo Marchiony of New York may have patented the first machine for the making of the waffle cone in about 1903. And, ice cream’s status as a very American dessert was made official during WWII when Mussolini banned the sale of ice cream in Italy, seeing it as a symbol of America.

Dogs Love It, Too
Understanding the influence that inventors from right here had on the ice cream industry might make you love it even more. But, don’t leave you-know-who – your dog – out of the fun and cool deliciousness. So, as we bore into the hot month of July, remember that they enjoy a cool and tasty summer treat as much as we do.

There are a few ingredients in popular ice cream flavors that are not good for dogs (chocolate and raisins, for example are major no-no’s for dogs).

But, having a healthy version of this sweet summer treat around will do both of you a lot of good. Here’s to equal ice cream rights for all!

“Cloud Nine” Ice Cream For Dogs
Ingredients: 1 ripe banana, 1 cup of peanut butter, 2 cups of natural plain yogurt, 2 tbsps. of honey.?Instructions: Mash the banana and then stir it into the natural yogurt; warm the cup of peanut butter using a microwave or stove; add the banana, yogurt mixture and honey to the soft peanut butter and mix until everything is combined. Make the ice cream as you normally would, with an ice cream maker or by freezing and mixing as it hardens. (Add sweeteners for humans.)

P.S. Dog ice cream is making its way “across the pond.” A London dog ice cream truck serves its customers two varieties – “Dog Eat Hog World” (ham and chicken sorbet topped with a biscuit) and “Canine Cookie Crunch” (mixed dog biscuits and ice cream). The truck also broadcasts the Scooby Doo theme song as a signal to dogs that they are in the area. Woof! Woof!

May is National Hamburger Month

May 4, 2016 Dine With Us, Lifestyle Comments Off on May is National Hamburger Month
May Is National Hamburger Month What Is Your Favorite Burger?

Americans consume about 50 billion (beef) hamburgers a year – three burgers per week for every man, woman and child. The oldest burger chain, but the way, is White Castle, started in 1921.

Nobody really knows how hamburgers originated – from a hotdog maker who was trying to innovate a new sandwich, from 12th Century Mongolians who tenderized beef by putting it under their saddles, from the guy who flattened his meatballs and stuck them between two slices of bread, or, from the owner of a little sandwich joint somewhere in Connecticut. … Continue Reading

Focus On: Monk’s BBQ

May 4, 2016 Dine With Us, Lifestyle Comments Off on Focus On: Monk’s BBQ
Focus On Monk's BBQ

Monk’s BBQ in Purcellville focuses on slow smoked, no shortcuts, BBQ. Make sure to check them out every Wednesday for Whiskey Wednesday where 128 of their 130 bottle Rye Whiskey and Bourbon collection is half off. Every Friday and Saturday starting at 8 p.m. they have live music featuring the local musicians. They support the local brewing scene with 16 taps that always feature Virginia and DC craft breweries.

Pictured: from l to r: Mike Jewell, Brian Jenkins and Tim Owen, Photo by Sarah Huntington

Don’t Forget the Pie

December 2, 2015 Dine With Us, Lifestyle Comments Off on Don’t Forget the Pie
momsapplepie

This holiday season, don’t forget the pie! Mom’s Apple Pie Company has been selected by Yahoo Travel as the best pie shop in the state of Virginia.

Mom’s is locally owned and specializes in fresh pies using locally grown fruit as much as possible. They have a large variety of pies and since we have tried them all it is hard to decide which is our favorite. All we know is that they are delicious.

Their pies are preservative free and not too sweet – so you can really taste the fruit. Mom’s has three locations: Leesburg at 220 Loudoun St, SE, Round Hill at 35246 Harry Byrd Hwy., and Occoquan at 126A Commerce St.

For more information go to www.momsapplepieco.com.

Photo courtesy of Mom’s Apple Pie

Two Kitchen Cousins Present …

August 7, 2015 Dine With Us, Lifestyle Comments Off on Two Kitchen Cousins Present …
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What’s For Dinner? … A Turkey Casserole for You and Your Pooch
– By Lisa Wasson And Andrea Gaines

As we celebrate the dog days of August, we look to foods that are as tasty and nutritious for us humans as they are for the family dog.

Here’s a fun one – turkey casserole with rice and veggies. Save it for a special occasion … like your dog’s birthday, or any time you want to remind your dog how much your love them. … Continue Reading

Two Kitchen Cousins Present … Plate To Tempt, Plate To Tease

July 1, 2015 Dine With Us, Lifestyle Comments Off on Two Kitchen Cousins Present … Plate To Tempt, Plate To Tease
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– By Lisa Wasson And Andrea Gaines

Plating pulls a dish together, using color for visual appeal, showcasing ingredients and revealing the flavors and textures to be enjoyed. It isn’t so much about making something look pretty as it is about making it look appetizing. Here are the basics of good plating, along with some great examples.

Good plating …

Is more than a garnish. Everything on the plate should be edible and compliment the flavors in the dish.

Is simple. Even if the presentation is a bit unstructured and scattered, it has a limited number of features and a decided theme – whether casual or 5-Star.

Showcases the food. Placing a smaller portion of food on a larger plate or platter, and otherwise allowing the food to be the focus of attention can achieve this.

Balances color. The dark and neutral colors of meat, bread and pasta for example, are offset by bright greens, reds, pink, yellow and orange.

Structures the dish. Sometime this means clustering items in threes – with starch at 10 o’clock, proteins at 6 o’clock and vegetables at 2 o’clock; sometimes this means creating a stack or pyramid; sometimes it means using geometric patterns to emphasize contrasts in flavor and color.

Shows creativity. Food stylists say nothing says good plating more than something that surprises – a chilled shrimp accenting a fish dish, a vertical sprig of fresh herb, a beautiful edible flower resting atop a hearty steak.

Fancy Grilled Steak: Make a signature piece of meat, fish or pork the focus of your plate. Here, a filet mignon is dressed with a small pool of gravy, a dried red pepper, julienned fried onion and a spring of thyme.

Rustic Brochette: French or Italian toast rounds – topped with your favorite brochette mixture and garnished with freshly ground black pepper and cherry tomatoes – is simple, rustic and beautiful.

Spaghetti With Mushrooms & Orange: Plate your pasta to reveal its flavors. Here, creamy mushrooms are presented as a topping with strips of orange zest. A spray of savory orange sauce finishes off the dish.

Blue Cheese Burger: For burgers – and any kind of sandwich, really – put the ingredients together in a loose way that lets all of them show … much more appetizing than a regular old closed face sandwich plate.

Sliced Meats & Cheeses: Arranged on a cutting board with some fresh greens and herbs, sliced meats and cheeses look delicious and ready to snack on – on their own or with a cracker or slice of bread.

Pizza: Fresh out of the oven pizza benefits from an added something – a sprinkling of arugula, a drizzle of oil, a chiffonade of basil, a sprinkling of fresh parsley or thyme or a grind or two of fresh pepper.

About Andrea & Lisa: Andrea and Lisa are cousins who grew up on Long Island together. Andrea is a well-know writer for the Blue Ridge Leader & Loudoun Today. Lisa is a private chef who has been making people’s mouths water ever since she started baking fresh muffins for her office mates in New York City.

Two Kitchen Cousins Present a Cool and Spicy Treat for Father’s Day

June 3, 2015 Dine With Us, Lifestyle Comments Off on Two Kitchen Cousins Present a Cool and Spicy Treat for Father’s Day
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Andalusia Gazpacho
By Lisa Wasson And Andrea Gaines

All Dads agree … there is nothing like a chilled mug or shot glass of salty sweet, citrusy gazpacho on a warm summer evening. Originating in the Spanish region of Andalusia, our recipe for this chilled vegetable soup is perfect with Dad’s a favorite thing from the grill … or as a prelude to a hearty dish of pasta.

Gazpacho provides lots of nutrients, including Vitamin A, Vitamin K, Vitamin B6, Iron, Potassium, Copper and Selenium, Vitamin C and Manganese. It is also a good source of protein and is low in saturated fat. Healthy, not just for Dad, but for all. … Continue Reading

Calling All Kids: Lets Make Popsicles

June 3, 2015 Dine With Us, Lifestyle Comments Off on Calling All Kids: Lets Make Popsicles
popsicles

Love popsicles? I do. The delicious and healthy kind kids can make at home with summery treats from the garden or local farm stand. The kind that – if the kid doesn’t happen to have a real life popsicle mold – can be made with everyday items from the kitchen like a juice cup, Dixie cup, ice cube tray or cupcake tin.

Popsicles are a – mostly – no rules kind of treat. Just a few things to keep in mind: 1) Freeze your popsicles for a good four to six hours before eating; 2) Let your popsicles freeze for about an hour before you insert your popsicle stick; and 3) To unmold your popsicle, run the container under a bit of warm water. … Continue Reading

Two Kitchen Cousins Present …Cod In Parchment with Citrus Butter

May 6, 2015 Dine With Us, Lifestyle Comments Off on Two Kitchen Cousins Present …Cod In Parchment with Citrus Butter
twokitchencousins

By Lisa Wasson And Andrea Gaines

The key to success with any dish is picking a good recipe and then repeating it until it’s second nature to you.
Cooking with parchment is one of the easiest ways to guarantee success, particularly when it comes to subtlety of flavor. It may feel intimidating at first, but it is simple, really – easy to prep, easy to cook, easy to serve. In the case of this dish – which translates to “Le Cabillaud dans le Parchemin Avec le Beurre d’Arrume” – it’s also an opportunity to bone up on your French. Enjoy! … Continue Reading

Two Kitchen Cousins Present: Mason Jar Salads – Healthy, Pretty, Convenient and Fun

March 4, 2015 Dine With Us, Lifestyle Comments Off on Two Kitchen Cousins Present: Mason Jar Salads – Healthy, Pretty, Convenient and Fun
kitchen cousins salad

By Lisa Wasson and Andrea Gaines

To begin, line up your mason jars (or any wide-mouthed glass jar with a lid) along with your chosen dressing and ingredients. Prepare and season the ingredients as you normally would – slicing, blanching, roasting and shredding – so they are all ready to go. Return pasta, roasted vegetables and other cooked/steamed ingredients to room temperature before layering, and also drain items that come in their own juice – including canned, pickled or marinated vegetables and beans. … Continue Reading

Two Kitchen Cousins Present – Let’s Throw a Winter Chili Party

January 6, 2015 Dine With Us, Lifestyle, Uncategorized Comments Off on Two Kitchen Cousins Present – Let’s Throw a Winter Chili Party
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By Lisa Wasson and Andrea Gaines

If you’re going to be snowed in, there’s nothing better than being snowed in with something savory simmering on the stove and making the house smell delicious.

This chili recipe – meant to satisfy both the vegetarian and the meat eater in your household – fits the bill. It has a deep, spicy flavor and also freezes beautifully. Make extra that you can heat up over a weekend and/or have available for a quick lunch, a weekend afternoon of football or a ready-to-go dinner with a fresh salad and warm bread during the week. This recipe makes about 1-1/2 quarts. The list of ingredients is rather long, but it’s worth the effort. … Continue Reading

Restaurant Review: Magnolias at the Mill

December 10, 2014 Dine With Us, Lifestyle Comments Off on Restaurant Review: Magnolias at the Mill

magnoliaThe reservation was for a Sunday evening as this critic’s experience is that Sunday evenings can be difficult for restaurants. The executive chef is usually not in the house and the staff is generally not from the A-List. Chef Chris Carp who recently joined Magnolias as executive chef was not in the house on the evening we dined but his presence was felt. The menu Chef Carp has created is varied, seasonal and wonderfully tempting. Magnolias has several menus including gluten free and one for kids. The restaurant caters to varied tastes and dietary needs.

My guest and I were seated immediately upon our arrival and within five seconds Alex, our waiter, was at the table. Within 5 minutes we had ice water with lemon wedges served on the side. The entire staff was efficient and friendly. Now if the food is as exceptional as the customer service we were in for a wonderful evening. … Continue Reading


 

 

 

 

 

Columns

The Grim Reaper and the Great Barrier

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(to be presented to the Board of Supervisors in January) “The recent frequency and intensity of mass coral bleaching are of major concern, and are directly attributable to rising atmospheric greenhouse gases.” [1]

Pearl Harbor

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By Nicholas Reid Seventy-five years ago this December 7, to quote President Franklin D. Roosevelt, “the United States of America was suddenly and deliberately attacked by naval and air forces of the Empire of Japan.” It will have been 75 …

Early Returns: How U.S. Markets Reacted to the Presidential Election

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On November 8, 2016, Republican candidate Donald J. Trump won a closely contested election for president of the United States. Late on election night, when it became evident that Trump was likely to win, despite consistently trailing in the polls, …

America: Worthy of Our Trust

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By Samuel Moore-Sobel My friend and I sit in a bar near our office. He is upset, bags under his eyes due to lack of sleep. Thursday, our weekly night to meet is usually a happy hour filled with intellectual …

South Riding

South Riding

I should have known that this one would take me far from my contemplative, Zen-inspired comfort zone; after I’d traversed more construction projects than I wanted to tally, competed with hurried, coffee-driven commuters with no time for mere existence, and …

Support Group Help Needed

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Dr. Mike, My son was diagnosed with ADHD two years ago, and his pediatrician at that time recommended we try a social skills group for his “immaturity” and “impulsivity.” We did that, and our experience was horrible. The kids in …

The State of Corals

Figure 3 close up view of healthy coral polyps. [9]

(Presented to the Board of Supervisors December 6, 2016) “Events as severe as the 1998 event, the worst on record, are likely to become commonplace within 20 years.” – Ove Hoegh-Guldberg, 1999 [4] Tony Noerpel

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

December 2016
Monday Tuesday Wednesday Thursday Friday Saturday Sunday
November 28, 2016 November 29, 2016 November 30, 2016 December 1, 2016 December 2, 2016 December 3, 2016

Holiday Open House

Notaviva Vineyards - Bluegrass Jam - FREE event

December 4, 2016

Holiday Open House

December 5, 2016 December 6, 2016 December 7, 2016 December 8, 2016 December 9, 2016

Christmas Market and Trolley Tours

December 10, 2016

Holiday Open House

13th Annual Purcellville Christmas Parade

Barrel Tasting Event Saturday

December 11, 2016

Christmas Market and Trolley Tours

December 12, 2016 December 13, 2016 December 14, 2016 December 15, 2016 December 16, 2016 December 17, 2016

Intro to Essential Oils

December 18, 2016
December 19, 2016 December 20, 2016 December 21, 2016 December 22, 2016 December 23, 2016 December 24, 2016 December 25, 2016
December 26, 2016 December 27, 2016 December 28, 2016 December 29, 2016 December 30, 2016 December 31, 2016

Family New Year’s Eve Celebration

January 1, 2017

New Year's Day Musikabend

Restore & Renew

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Lifestyle

Farm Bureau President Hopes for Immigration Reform

5 Dec 2016

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Virginia Farm Bureau President Wayne F. Pryor told county delegates at the organization’s annual convention in Hot Springs that immigration reform “is an issue that has been delayed too long.” He noted that: “Work will begin on the 2018 Farm Bill next year. This is the most complex federal legislation farmers face, and it typically takes at least two years …

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Northern Virginia Chamber To Host Congressional Roundtable

5 Dec 2016

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The Northern Virginia Chamber will host its annual Congressional Roundtable on Monday, December 12, from 3:00 to 5:00 p.m. at the Northern Virginia Chamber in Tysons (7900 Westpark Drive, Suite A550). The dialogue will cover several issues at the intersection of federal policy and business – federal spending, energy, trade policy, the sequestration and the effect on Northern Virginia, transportation, …

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Ugly Christmas Sweater Fad Keeps Growing

30 Nov 2016

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Since 2012, the Re-Love It consignment shop, at 138 N. 21st Street in Purcellville, has developed the reputation as the place to get your Ugly Christmas Sweater in the Metro D.C. area. In that time, Re-Love It has sold more than 3,000 vintage Ugly Christmas Sweaters.

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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

Vote No To the Minor Special Exception

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We are a group of Loudoun County citizens who will be adversely affected if the board grants a special exception for the Catesby Farm property at your upcoming meeting. You …

It’s Our Right

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On December 6, the Board of Supervisors is scheduled to vote on a “Minor Special Exception” proposal we submitted earlier this year concerning our Catesby Farm property. Unfortunately, our limited …

View From the Ridge

Broken Promises, Hidden by a Six-Foot Berm

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By Andrea Gaines On August 9, 1825 at the age of 69, French military officer the Marquis de Lafayette was honored in Leesburg by former President James Monroe. The French-born …

Around Virginia

Warner Introduces Bill To Help Wells Fargo Victims Get Their Day in Court

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U.S. Sen. Mark R. Warner (D-VA), a member of the Senate Banking Committee, introduced legislation to give Wells Fargo customers who were victims of a fraudulent account scheme their day in court. The bank was involved in a scandal this year after it was revealed that Wells Fargo employees secretly …

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History’s Holy Places: Four Local Sites Worth Exploring This Fall

outandaboutloudoun

The Journey through Hallowed Ground is a 180-mile long, 75-mile wide trek from Gettysburg to Monticello, encompassing nine presidential homes and places, 18 national and state parks, and thousands of small and large historical sites. Dozens and dozens of these sites and related museums are short ride from just about …

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Land Trust Receives Large Donation

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On August 22, The Land Trust of Virginia received a $10,000 gift from the Sharon D. Virts Foundation, based in Herndon. The presentation of this grant was part of the Foundation’s official launch event, held at Selma Plantation in Leesburg. Notable speakers included Sharon D. Virts, FCiFederal Founder and Chair, …

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Sports

Accepting Applications for Sports League Funding

30 Nov 2016

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Purcellville is accepting applications from local organizations for its annual sports league funding program. Organizations must serve the Town of Purcellville area, have citizens of the Town of Purcellville as players, and provide a letter to the Town from the IRS confirming the organization’s tax exempt status in order to …

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Woodgrove High Student Will Pursue Track and Field at George Mason

30 Nov 2016

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Puneet Kaur of Woodgrove High School has signed a National Letter of Intent to continue her track and field career at George Mason University. Kaur has held the school record in shot put since her sophomore year and is looking to throw shotput, hammer, discus and maybe even the javelin …

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