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Relief for Dulles Toll Road Users

January 8, 2014 Dear Editor, Opinion 1 comment
Dave_larock

By Delegate-Elect Dave LaRock

Why are Dulles Toll Road tolls rising? Like it or not, as Dulles Toll Road users we have been strapped with a huge share of the Dulles Rail construction costs which, although originally estimated to be $875 million, has increased by 245 percent to $3 billion today.

If you pay the outrageous round-trip toll of $7 to use the often-congested Dulles Toll Road, which now costs the average daily commuter about $1,750 annually, you can look to the center lanes and see drivers who pay zero dollars in tolls zipping along in those free center lanes. Elsewhere, drivers who attempt to cope with soaring tolls by moving onto local non-tolled routes add further to already gridlocked conditions. Regional mobility overall is diminished for local residents, businesses and travelers. … Continue Reading

Hope for Rural Loudoun in the Board Room

January 8, 2014 Editorial, Opinion 1 comment
malcolm_baldwin

By Malcolm F. Baldwin

Let us begin the New Year by crediting Loudoun’s Board of Supervisors with some important 2013 actions benefitting our rural economy.

Earlier this year the board approved the Rural Business Strategy developed by the board-appointed Rural Economic Development Council (REDC, of which I am a member), albeit by narrow 5-4 vote. It later funded the staff assistant position requested by the REDC and the Economic Development Department staff to help implementation. And, it went on to reject a proposed notion of eliminating the REDC as an advisory body.

Further support for rural Loudoun came in December with the board’s consideration of the unanimous planning commission recommendation not to allow new school siting by right in rural zoning districts. Several supervisors reversed previous positions favoring speedier approval of school sites, now seeing benefits of public comments and requirements for board approval of special zoning exceptions for new school sites in rural Loudoun, and possibly elsewhere. The board appears likely to follow its planning commission’s recommendation. … Continue Reading

Bumper Cars on Main Street

January 8, 2014 Editorial, Opinion 2 comments
town of purcellville sign

By Karen Jimmerson

America’s main streets are on a path to all look the same – the same McDonald’s, Taco Bell, Starbucks and Jiffy Lube. They fill the landscape of our everyday paths. Our lives have been franchised or chained. It is so commonplace that is now seems inevitable, unavoidable, and just a fact of our modern lives. Small towns that used to belong in a Norman Rockwell painting are losing that very real esthetic.

As you drive into western Loudoun, large tracts of open space still embrace you. A drive into neighboring counties and parts of eastern Loudoun, you see tangible evidence of development gone awry. Every few miles, fast food restaurants repeat themselves. Strip malls flank bumper to bumper traffic. Western Loudoun is slowing falling prey to this, and remember eastern Loudoun looked like western Loudoun not too long ago. … Continue Reading

A Few More Facts About The Autumn Hill Development

December 4, 2013 Dear Editor, Opinion Comments Off on A Few More Facts About The Autumn Hill Development
town of purcellville sign

To continue the discussion at the point where Bob Lazaro and Janet Clarke left off. “Chestnut Overlook residents bought [land] next to something that was already approved, 20 plus years ago.”

Yes, we did. We bought land in a Joint Land Management Area (JLMA) that was governed by the Purcellville Urban Growth Area Management Plan (PUGAMP). And this area was set in a County that has regulations for all developments in western Loudoun to be on home sites of at least three acres and to be horse properties. This was in place to ensure that the agricultural traditions of the area remain in keeping with its roots within the character of “This Hallowed Ground.” Additionally, Purcellville was a town that at one time outlawed drive throughs. Purcellville was a town that valued its 21st Street, and “Don’t Fairfax Loudoun” was a very popular bumper sticker. The approved 500 unit complex was placed in as a defensive measure because it was so absurd that the town’s people would never want that. The people I knew in town, liked a low crime, low density, rural small town that valued its old family farms and the traditional western Loudoun life. … Continue Reading

21st Street Is Charming and Authentic

December 3, 2013 Dear Editor, Opinion Comments Off on 21st Street Is Charming and Authentic
town of purcellville sign

Purcellville’s old-town business district on 21st Street is charming and appealing because it is authentic. Many of the businesses have changed over the years, but the exteriors of the buildings have remained essentially the same.

A drugstore becomes a restaurant. A car dealership becomes a furniture store, then a gift store, then a distillery. Part of another auto dealership becomes a storage facility and then a bazaar. A grain mill becomes a restaurant and another mill becomes a bicycle shop and bookstore. On and on, the buildings are adapted and modified in a natural progression to accommodate new enterprises without destroying the basic architectural character of the old town. … Continue Reading

Preserve Our Unique Old Town

December 3, 2013 Dear Editor, Opinion Comments Off on Preserve Our Unique Old Town
town of purcellville sign

A comment on the proposed 21st Street Project in the historic Purcellville town: This ghastly, tacky, multi-story monstrosity has no place in Purcellville unless the sole object of the development is the generation of maximum revenue for the developers at the prohibitive cost of replacing our charming and unique old town with yet another slice of generic, cookie-cutter suburbia. If this development is permitted, what is left of historic Purcellville will be swallowed whole, leaving little motive to preserve the small remnant that would be left. To add insult to injury, some taxpayer funding will no doubt be required to force us to assist in the destruction of our historic district. This project should be rejected.

D.L. Bell
Purcellville

The Good, the Bad, and the Ugly

December 3, 2013 Dear Editor, Opinion Comments Off on The Good, the Bad, and the Ugly
town of purcellville sign

The good citizens of the Town of Purcellville and the surrounding neighbors have seen few good things happen in and around Purcellville over the past several years. Many people moved here from areas of rapid growth to get away from it all. They liked the small unique character of the town and surrounding community. Now these same people feel the need to move away: Purcellville is becoming “Any town USA.”

Here are some of the reasons: 50 acres of proposed residential and commercial on 287 north of Hirst Road. Travel further south on 287 towards the traffic circle and you have another planned retail area including a gas station, travel south around the traffic circle along the Southern Collector Road, and yet another soon to be planned commercial development. There may be plans to build across from Blue Ridge Middle School, also. … Continue Reading

Autumn Hill/Mayfair – The Real Reason Behind Annexation

December 3, 2013 Editorial, Opinion 5 comments
town of purcellville sign

In 1991 the County approved the Autumn Hill rezoning request that would allow the development of 492 multi-family residential units just north of Purcellville. The proffers or legal agreements that were approved required that the development be served by town water and sewer service which could only occur if the property were annexed into the town. Since the town refused to annex and provide the utilities, the current landowner sought and received a permit from the Loudoun County Health Department (which is a state agency) to construct an on-site alternative sewage system rather than use town utilities.

The Health Department’s permit expired November 15. The permit stated explicitly that “Any proposed construction or other action in furtherance of or pursuant to this permit shall be subject to and must comply with all applicable state and local ordinances or regulations, including without limitation, any applicable zoning regulations, proffers, or conditions, any applicable comprehensive plan conformance review requirements, and applicable inter-jurisdictional agreements.” … Continue Reading

Thank You From Delegate-Elect, Dave LaRock

November 11, 2013 Dear Editor, Opinion Comments Off on Thank You From Delegate-Elect, Dave LaRock
Dave_larock

Dear Residents of the 33rd District,

I’m writing this letter to express my sincere thanks to the good people of the 33rd District for making me your Delegate-elect. This is a great honor, and a humbling one; I look forward to building on the accomplishments of the other leaders who have served in this position with dedication and distinction.

To all of the folks that turned out and voted for me on Election Day, worked at the polls, organized behind the scenes, endorsed me, wrote letters on my behalf, and otherwise gave of your effort, time, and treasure, I am very grateful. Many of you gave very much, and many could only help in small ways, but all of you played an essential part in our campaign. Congratulations on a job well done! … Continue Reading

Preserve Our Unique Old Town

November 11, 2013 Dear Editor, Opinion Comments Off on Preserve Our Unique Old Town
21stSTfrontpagepic

A comment on the proposed 21st Street Project in the historic Purcellville town: This ghastly, tacky, multi-story monstrosity has no place in Purcellville unless the sole object of the development is the generation of maximum revenue for the developers at the prohibitive cost of replacing our charming and unique old town with yet another slice of generic, cookie-cutter suburbia. If this development is permitted, what is left of historic Purcellville will be swallowed whole, leaving little motive to preserve the small remnant that would be left. To add insult to injury, some taxpayer funding will no doubt be required to force us to assist in the destruction of our historic district. This project should be rejected.

D.L. Bell
Purcellville

Should VDOT Remain a Four Letter Word?

November 6, 2013 Dear Editor, Opinion 1 comment
LTEpic

As my wife and I visit our new home under construction in the Lucketts/Taylorstown area, it remains highly disturbing to see VDOT ignore obvious safey hazards on roads they are responsible for maintaining. New Valley Church Road has a curve just west of the Route 15 intersection that is so bad residents have to plea for help by putting signage on trees. This assumes VDOT managers can read. Even the minimum standards required for road acceptance by VDOT are not practiced on such roads. Some cul-de-sac’s in Ashburn have wider and safer roads than Route 15 and New Valley Church Road, and a great many “secondary” roads where residents pay just as much taxes for safety maintenance. … Continue Reading

Thank You For The Purcellville Halloween Block Party 

November 6, 2013 Dear Editor, Opinion Comments Off on Thank You For The Purcellville Halloween Block Party 
blueridge2

I would like to take this opportunity to thank Re-Love It and all the sponsors and organizers for allowing me to MC the recent Purcellville Halloween Block Party. To put it simply, it is this kind of community programming that helps makes small town USA such a vital part of our changing society. With the support of the Town of Purcellville and its police department and the PFVD, it was truly a fun experience, not only for all the residents, but for all the visitors as well. There was no talk of politics….unless it was Snickers vs. Milkyway and there was no talk of metro/taxes…unless it was about aliens in hovercrafts, in short, it was a wonderful time to get to know each other, even though we may have had a mask on.

While I was on stage keeping the ghosts and goblins at bay, I was reminded how much Purcellville means to me. Seeing this event in Old Town Purcellville was special. For years when I was on the Economic Development Committee for the town, we discussed “Where is the real Purcellville, where is the heart of Purcellville.” Well we have an answer, it is located on 21st Street and in the hearts of its residents.

R. Ben Weber

From “Affordable Housing” To “Food, Fun and Games”

November 6, 2013 Editorial, Opinion 1 comment
affordablehousingpic

By Karen Jimmerson

As promised in late summer, lawyer Mark Nelis has repackaged his proposal for the controversial 178-unit Catoctin Creek Apartment complex. Inappropriate development can come to growing towns like Purcellville with lightening speed, greased by a wink and a nod by those who are (supposedly) charged with the public trust and the developer’s “sales force” – insiders who know the soft spot citizens have for terms such as “family friendly,” “low-cost housing,” and “open [air] space.” But, an increasingly well-educated and wary public, I hope, will see through the language being used to try and get this project over the finish line.

In October, the Town of Purcellville received a revised concept plan application for the construction of an approximately 178-unit apartment complex on Hirst Road along with a large outdoor and indoor “entertainment complex” to also include retail. The project includes different properties under different owners now lumped into one application. … Continue Reading


 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Columns

Ice house, Hot House and Mad House

noerpel_new

Recently, I was asked: “I know we are putting carbon dioxide into the atmosphere and scientists say that will warm the planet but there were also ice ages and warmer climates in the past before humans so what caused those …

Sugar Crash

Lunde new

Sugar runs inside our body and fuels our very being. In biology they teach us that sugar is really glucose which is broken down in the body to produce ATP (adenine tri-phosphate). So why bring this up? Well, sugar is …

The Art of Memory

moore-sobelnewmug

By Samuel Moore-Sobel Still Alice. A movie that not only elicits tears, but naturally incurs reflection. This heartrending movie was the starting point of a personal wrestling with the implications of human memory. Remembering can bring us back to a …

Living in Debt

Michael_Pic

Dr. Mike, My husband has issues with money that are hurting our relationship and family. He makes a lot of money, but he spends more than he makes and we are in debt. He can’t just have a luxury car, …

June in the Garden

juneingarden flowers

Conserve Water, Beat the Heat and Keep Things Blooming By Andrea Gaines It’s getting hot out there. And, there’s nothing more discouraging for a gardener that to come home after a weekend away – or miss a regular watering schedule …

Potoma Wayside

potoma wayside

My advice is: Don’t look straight down; the combination of rushing highway traffic a couple of feet away and, what’s – to me, anyway – a dizzying height, can produce some unsettling sensations. I came to this conclusion after walking …

Editorial

Grief and Greed

blueridge2

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

Oh No, It’s the Christians!

blueridge2

By Nicholas Reid In the hours and days following every massacre perpetrated by radical Muslims, there is one unifying theme across most news coverage of the massacre, wherever it may …

Dear Editor

Thank You

nedimogelman

It is with great anticipation that I look forward to Monday, June 27, 2016. On that day new Purcellville Town Council members will be sworn into office, at Town Hall. …

View From the Ridge

An Open Letter to the Citizens of Purcellville

blueridge2

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 …

Student News

Four Scouts Achieve Eagle Scout Rank

3 Feb 2016

eaglescout

Joel Gicker, Kyle Siecker, Sam Soltis and David Watson achieved the rank of Eagle Scout at a Court of Honor conducted at Blue Ridge Bible Church in Purcellville on January 9. The four Eagles are members of Troop 711 of …

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8th Grade Writers Honored At Blue Ridge Middle School

2 Jul 2015

blueridgemiddleschool

Sixty-seven Blue Ridge Middle School eighth graders have been honored for their writing during the 2014-2015 school year. Many students had their writing selected for publication by Creative Communication, a program for student writers, while others won county-wide writing contests. …

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Ben Kellogg Achieves Eagle Scout

1 Jul 2015

benkellog

Benjamin Robert Kellogg achieved the rank of Eagle Scout at a Court of Honor conducted at St. Andrew’s Presbyterian Church in Purcellville on March 29. Friends, family and troop leaders attended the celebration, including his parents, Robert and Deirdre Kellogg. …

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Calendar

June 2016
M T W T F S S
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Sea & Sky – an exhibit by copper artist Anne Jordan and mixed media artist Karen Watson

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Sea & Sky – an exhibit by copper artist Anne Jordan and mixed media artist Karen Watson

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

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

Free Gardening Lecture

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

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

Yard Sale

Notaviva Vineyards - Bluegrass Jam - FREE event

PAUL REISLER TRIO WITH LEA MORRIS AND MARSHALL KEYS

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

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

7

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

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

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

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

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

19th Annual Cajun Festival & Crawfish Boil

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

Goats at BRNP

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

Bring Dad to North Gate Vineyard

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

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

22

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

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

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

June Fourth Friday at Breaux Vineyards

Love, He Called It

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

Love, He Called It

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

Sip & Paint at Breaux Vineyards

Love, He Called It

27

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

28

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

29

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

30

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

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Notaviva Vineyards - Bluegrass Jam - FREE event

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Lifestyle

Rummage Sale Trailers Open July 9

27 Jun 2016

rummage_sale

78th Annual Ladies Board Rummage Sale Ready For Donations The Ladies Board of Inova Loudoun Hospital is officially accepting donations for the annual Rummage Sale. The first Donation Day of the summer will be on Saturday, July 9 from 9:00 a.m. to 1:00 p.m. at Inova Loudoun Hospital, 44045 Riverside Parkway, Leesburg, and at Inova Loudoun Medical Campus – Leesburg, …

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Troy and Paula Haag Perform at Old Stone School

9 Jun 2016

troy and paula haag 1a

Troy and Paula Haag, will appear on The Gap Stage at the Old Stone School on Saturday, June 18. Tickets are $15 in advance and $20 at the door. Dinner will be sold by Big Mike’s BBQ, drinks will be sold by the glass, and there will be desserts at intermission. Troy and Paula will be joined by Max Haag …

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Here’s To the Colorists, Manicurists and Blow Dry Mavens… Thanks for Listening!

1 Jun 2016

hair color

Sunday, June 26 is Beauticians Day, celebrating the cosmetology and other experts who keep us looking and feeling our best – whether it’s with a haircut and style, a facial, a manicure, or just some quiet and light conversation.

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Around Virginia

HUD Awards $2 Million in Housing Counseling Grants To Virginia

Kaine

Sens. Mark R. Warner and Tim Kaine (both D-VA) announced today that Catholic Charities USA, headquartered in Alexandria, will receive $951,150 in federal funding, and the Virginia Housing Development Authority, located in Richmond, will receive $1,040,918. This nearly $2 million grant by the Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD) …

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Four Hop, Skip and a Jump Local Destinations

morven

Last month we encouraged our readers to consider visiting any one of five great destinations within just a stone’s throw of Loudoun’s history-lined borders – Berryville and Harper’s Ferry among them. This month we feature four destinations – two right here in our much-celebrated county, and two just over the …

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Out and About Loudoun and Beyond

The Plains’ charming restaurants, shops and sidewalks.

Five Stone’s Throw Spring and Summer Destinations By Andrea Gaines Bordered by the Potomac River to the north and beautiful mountains to the west – and with easy access to Rt. 95, the Dulles Toll Road and Route 66 – Loudouners have no short list of fun spring places to …

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Sports

The Lady Vikings Earned Back-to Back Conference Title

1 Jun 2016

lvhs

The Lady Vikings earned the back-to back conference title with a 4-1 win over Heritage in late May. The team earned a first round playoff bye finishing first in the conference and then went on to defeat Rock Ridge 12-0 in the conference semi-finals. The Lady Vikings ended their regular …

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Big Baseball Coming To Fireman’s Field

1 Jun 2016

purcellville cannons

Got Your Father’s Day Gift Lined Up Yet? The Purcellville Cannons’ Brett Fuller couldn’t be happier. He’s the owner of one of the most popular teams in the Valley Baseball League. The team, up until recently was called the Charles Town Cannons but now calls Purcellville its home.

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