Hatrick’s Leadership Evaluated

April 24, 2009 by Blue Ridge Leader Schools Comments Off on Hatrick’s Leadership Evaluated

April 24, 2009

Edgar Hatrick, Superintendent of Loudoun County Public Schools, was both lauded and reviled this week.

The American Association of School Administrators chose Hatrick as its president elect for its year 2009-2010. Hatrick has belonged to the AASA for 22 years, serving on its Executive Committee and Governing Board.

“Ed is a veteran school leader and AASA member who is committed to the work of the association and our members,” said current President Randall Collins, superintendent of schools in Waterford, Conn.

Hatrick responded to the honor by promising that “as president-elect, I will seek to represent AASA’s members to the best of my ability and work to increase membership so we can continue as a strong national voice for America’s children. I learned long ago that if we frame our decisions in what is right for children, we cannot fail.”

However, another prominent American institution believes that Hatrick has done just that: failed to make decisions based on what’s right for children. The Loudoun chapter of the NAACP asserts that Hatrick has undermined the interests of all children by condoning discriminatory hiring practices. … Continue Reading

Blue Ridge Leader Bids Adieu

April 24, 2009 by Blue Ridge Leader Business Comments Off on Blue Ridge Leader Bids Adieu

April 24, 2009

The Blue Ridge Leader, Purcellville’s newspaper for over two decades, will cease publication in its current form with this issue.

The Leader was born in 1984, when five local businessmen joined forces and funds to establish a free paper covering western Loudoun County from an office in the basement of the old firehouse on 20th Street. Four years later, during a financial crisis, publisher and editor Philip Hahn informed the paper’s board of directors that he was moving the operation into his home on Main Street. He hoped to keep publishing the paper, “but the advertising base in Leesburg and western Loudoun County is limited,” he reminded the board.

Some 21 years later, the paper is back where it started, in the basement of the old firehouse, facing a financial crisis. Western Loudoun’s advertising base is once again contracting during the worst economic climate since the Great Depression, but this time there’s no board of trustees, and Phil Hahn died a year ago. So tonight, after putting the paper to bed one last time, we’ll add The Blue Ridge Leader to the growing list of newspapers throughout the country that won’t wake up tomorrow.

It has been our pleasure and privilege to serve our neighbors, and we sincerely appreciate the support of our faithful advertisers and the many readers who contribute to our weekly articles and send their thoughts in letters.

Thanks for 25 years, Purcellville.
Goodbye.

Democracy

April 24, 2009 by Blue Ridge Leader Dear Editor, Opinion Comments Off on Democracy

April 24, 2009

I write in response to a comment made by Purcellville Mayor Bob Lazaro at the April 14 meeting of the Town Council where he stated an opinion about being critical of “someone” for getting involved after only being in Purcellville less than a year. While this statement was made known to me by multiple citizens who were in attendance, I am going with this paraphrased version. Why? The options that I have to get the actual statements are to pay a small monetary fee of $5 for the CD audio copy of the meeting, wait two weeks for the draft copy of the minutes, or issue and pay for a Freedom of Information Act request. Given those options, I only have to assume that he is referring to me. However, even though he wasn’t willing to name me specifically, I have chosen to respond. Democracy as it exists stresses that citizens hold some form of power because elites must compete for citizens’ “favor.” Participatory democracy does this by including the citizens in the political process. So, to be critical of someone for getting involved after only being here less than a year is again an example of elitists in power who don’t understand who is the employee and who is the employer in this system of government. Mr. Mayor and members of the Town Council, we taxpayers do not work for you. We are American citizens who have the responsibility to be involved regardless of how long we live in a particular place. As FDR said, “The only sure bulwark of continuing liberty is a government strong enough to protect the interests of the people, and a people strong enough and well enough informed to maintain its sovereign control over the government.” If you choose to have a different view of how citizens interact with their elected representatives and question policies via their own opinion, there are other nations that will certainly open their doors to you. Here we have a citizen-led political system. Further, if our opinions aren’t valid until we are residents of this Town for a set time period, please let me know as I and others will cease the payment of taxes, water and sewer bills, etc. until this period of time has elapsed. If the interested citizen is constrained by such requirements, there can be no citizenship because there is no room for opinion.

Ryan J. Cool
Purcellville

Putting the Paper to Bed

April 24, 2009 by Blue Ridge Leader Columns Comments Off on Putting the Paper to Bed

April 24, 2009
By Mark Dewey

Last week a herd of buffalo which had been living as relics on a farm near Round Hill crashed its fences and made a run for the old grazing grounds, remembering, perhaps, that its kind was here first. As of this writing, eight of them are still roaming the patchwork of pasture, woodlands, and patio furniture that western Loudoun has become.

During most news cycles, that would be the story to tell, but this week the story is The Blue Ridge Leader: we’re going out of business.

When The Rocky Mountain News went out of business after serving Denver for 149 years, the columnist Mike Littwin noted that, “newspapers don’t simply close. They die.” That’s because newspapers exist to tell stories, and though story-telling may not be the reason people exist, it’s bred in our bone, along with the need to matter.

The Blue Ridge Leader is the right thing in the wrong time, like those buffalo. Phil Hahn, the paper’s founder, believed that keeping up with the times meant paying attention to the day’s events and talking to the people behind them, not retooling. He recognized the internet’s convenience but didn’t jump to build a website for his paper, which wasn’t a convenient undertaking, after all.

Some people say that all newspapers are like those buffalo now, displaced from their ancestral lands by new technology. News is different now, they say. Information transfer systems like Twitter will unroll ribbons of text across your computer screen, like tickertape from the wire services of old. “Anyone and everyone who sees or hears just about anything can put it online,” Wendy Kaufman reported this week on National Public Radio. In fact, she said, Twitter feeds from cell phone users on a ferry first informed journalists that Captain Chesley Sullenberger had ditched his Airbus A320 in the Hudson River. “Sometimes it’s nonsense,” Kaufman said, “and sometimes it’s breathtaking.”

If that’s the future, then The Blue Ridge Leader is the past, because like any decent paper, it tries to make sense, not just convey information. Seventy-five percent of the information that comes into our office doesn’t make the paper because it doesn’t matter enough to warrant space. We have to decide what matters most, and why, and if people think we’re wrong, that means the give-and-take of making sense is underway, because I make my sense in light of yours, and you in light of mine, until one of us stops talking. Right now, folding The Blue Ridge Leader feels like saying that it doesn’t pay to talk about this place. But that’s not true.

“The column is called The View From the Ridge,” Phil told me three years ago, “and you live on the ridge. So write what you see.” And try to make sense. That went without saying.

Today I see a herd of buffalo. Bearded, surly, undomesticated beasts. They stand six feet at the shoulder and weigh 1800 pounds. Their heads are bigger than a bale of hay, and the hump of muscle on their backs provides more thrusting power than the engine of a Honda Civic. Last week one of those buffalo was hit by a car on Route 7 and survived until sheriff’s deputies arrived to put it down. Another buffalo on the scene charged the sheriff’s cruiser, ramming the door with its head and its horns, and then backing up and charging again, and again, and again.

I also see The Blue Ridge Leader. Most of the stories the paper has told in its 25 years relate to growth and its attendant change. In 1984, 60,000 people lived in Loudoun County, most of them in Sterling and Chantilly. Today that number approaches 300,000. Purcellville itself has grown from a village of 1,600 to a town of nearly 8,000, virtually engulfing Hamilton, Lincoln, and Round Hill.

What does growth like that mean? What does change like that mean? What does ramming that cruiser again and again in brute frustration mean? We could say that it doesn’t mean anything: it just is. But those two buffalo and those two cars, one car wrecked by one beast lying dead beside the road while the other creature tries to push the cruiser out of its world, back through the portal of mystery from which it emerged, its blue lights flashing and its sirens screaming, “Get the hell out of the way!”—that picture looks so much like a living symbol of the conflict caused by change that calling it merely information is a waste of food for thought. Why pass up the chance to ponder what it means?

That’s what this job has given me: a chance to make sense of what I see. It made me pay attention. It made me ask why. It made me listen, and wonder, and take notes. It made me try to understand. It’s a better way of living than the way I lived before, and I’m grateful for that. Thanks, Phil. Thanks, Jane Ann. Thanks, western Loudoun County. So long.

Redbud Season Salute to Those Slip Sliding Away

April 24, 2009 by Blue Ridge Leader Columns Comments Off on Redbud Season Salute to Those Slip Sliding Away

April 24, 2009
By Dr. Dave Williams

Coming from New England to Loudoun, some 25 years ago, I was for a long time thoroughly confused by Virginia’s seasons. My first winter, every time the snow fell and then in a few days melted, I kept thinking it was awfully early for Spring. In New England, the snow cover sat there, dirty and hard, until March or even April before melting. Icicles dripping off the southern side of the house in March were the first signs of a slowly coming Spring.

But oddest and most disturbing here in Loudoun was the shocking raspberry sherbet color of the Spring redbuds blossoming long before most trees even had their first light green leaves. … Continue Reading

New Loudoun EduPlex… Too Expensive, Too Big, and Too Remote…

April 24, 2009 by Blue Ridge Leader Dear Editor, Schools Comments Off on New Loudoun EduPlex… Too Expensive, Too Big, and Too Remote…

April 24, 2009

As a mother, teacher, and 12-yr Loudoun County taxpayer, I am appalled that Loudoun officials, namely the Loudoun County Public School Board, have recently contracted to purchase a 170-acre site in the agricultural district of Wheatland (between Lovettsville and Purcellville) for a future 4,000+ student elementary school, middle school, and high school complex. This EduPlex is too expensive, too big, and too remote. In the current real estate market and with the current budget crisis where land is going for $20K-30K/acre, it is absolutely absurd for them to pay an average of $67K/acre for this land. (Note that the majority of the site (160 of the 170 acres) were purchased in 2007 – at the height of the market – for $46K/acre) In addition, the size of the proposed complex is too large considering western Loudoun’s buildout projections at the current zoning density. Furthermore, the complex is much larger than most other school sites within the County as well as in surrounding Virginia and Maryland school districts. Considering what this County pays to build these kinds of schools, this project will end up costing us taxpayers over $200M to complete! To paraphrase Loudoun County’s Revised General Plan, “new public schools will be located in or immediately adjacent to existing villages, towns, and joint land management areas. Wheatland is not a town. There are no services nearby… Nor is there public water or sewer available. This area of Loudoun County contains a diverse and successful farming community (commonly referred to as the “Agricultural Jewel of Loudoun” for its important economic, scenic, and historic resources). Draining groundwater at a rate of 2,000+ gallons per day to serve so many students/faculty in a single massive complex is not sustainable and will certainly deplete the water needed to supply neighboring farms and homes. Not to mention the outrageous expense for the building and lifetime operation of not only a communal water treatment system(s) but at least one, and quite possibly multiple, wastewater treatment facilities. Given the opportunity to be in on the process of selecting a school site or even deciding what general criteria are most important for siting, I doubt most taxpayers would have approved this property as the best and most affordable option available. To get involved or if you’d just like to get a map or more information, go to http://www.wheatlandalliance.org.

Michele Trankovich
12-yr Loudoun County Resident

Valley Alumna Wins Prestigious Grant

April 24, 2009 by Blue Ridge Leader Schools Comments Off on Valley Alumna Wins Prestigious Grant

April 24, 2009

Kelsey Threatte of Lovettsville, is one of 40 college seniors in the country to win a highly competitive Thomas J. Watson Fellowship for a year of independent exploration and travel outside the United States.

Her creative research project, “Voice and Veil: The Power and Impact of Arab Women Poets on Society,” will take her to the Jordan, United Arab Emirates, Tunisia and Morocco to examine how Arab women acquire a voice in shaping their communities socially and politically.

The awards are not just for travel, explains Watson Fellowship Program Director, Cleveland Johnson, but are “long-term investments in people…We look for persons likely to lead or innovate in the future and give them extraordinary independence to pursue their interests outside of traditional academic structures.”

Kelsey attended Lovettsville Elementary School, Blue Ridge Middle School and Loudoun Valley High School. At Ursinus College she studied Arabic, established the Arabic Language and culture club, and was on the board of the Muslim Student Association. Kelsey graduates this term with Advanced Honors with a B.A. degree in Politics, International Relations and Philosophy.

The mission of the Thomas J. Watson Fellowship Program is to offer college graduates of unusual promise a year of independent, purposeful exploration and travel outside of the United States in order to enhance their capacity for resourcefulness, imagination, openness, and leadership and to foster their humane and effective participation in the world community.

Vikings Women’s Soccer Undefeated

April 24, 2009 by Blue Ridge Leader Uncategorized Comments Off on Vikings Women’s Soccer Undefeated

April 24, 2009

Halfway through the season, both Loudoun Valley Varsity and JV womens soccer teams are undefeated, with only one goal scored against total for each team, and that in non-district play. Head Coach Kerry Davidson, last year’s Cedar Run District Coach of the Year, has returned for her third season with the Vikes, aided by new Asst. Coach Erin Barrett.

Last Friday the teams traveled to Fauquier, where the Varsity Vikes enjoyed a 8-0 win, and JV a 3-0 victory. For Varsity, senior keeper Shelby Hall recorded her eighth shutout of the season, assisted by fellow defenders Amber Cook, Katie Beebe, Hannah Cousland and Ashleigh Hammer. Offense was led by Ashley Manning, who leads the team in scoring with 15 goals to date. Though Manning is the top scorer, several Vikes have the ability to find the back of the net, including Tabitha McHale, Amber Cook, Danielle Stephens, Charlotte Ratcliff and Amanda Hilditch. The Viking midfield held strong against the Fauquier Falcons, with key plays set up and great distribution and leadership by Sarah Van Vleet, Allie Hardesty and Lucy Etro.

The JV Vikings, coached by Dennis Roos and Jack Kelly, are coming out strong each game and winning, setting up the field for Varsity to “sweep.” This year’s squad is led by sophomores Jaimie Gutch, Amber Kelly, Haley Johnston, Kyra Kilfeather, keeper Emily Fuller, and is aided by several talented freshmen.

The teams play away this week at Osbourn Park and Liberty, and next week host Stonewall Jackson and district rival Battlefield.

Farewell To the Leader

April 24, 2009 by Blue Ridge Leader Columns Comments Off on Farewell To the Leader

April 24, 2009
By Al Van Huyck

It was with great sadness that I heard the news that The Blue Ridge Leader was shutting down publication, another victim of the recession and declining ad revenues. The paper has always held a special place for me. I wrote 60 “View from the Ridge” columns in the 1990’s and published multiple “Letters to the Editor” since.

It was the late Phil Hahn’s commitment to having a free flow of ideas and debate about the issues of the day that made the paper special. To me it was a forum, much like family and neighbors sitting around the kitchen table, to exchange ideas and the local news of the day in western Loudoun.

The Blue Ridge Leader started a quarter of a century ago. Only the Loudoun Times Mirror covered western Loudoun then, but now multiple papers are distributed each competing for limited ad revenues. Now one voice will be silenced.

It seems particularly sad because the paper has its best staff and is offering the best coverage in its history. The current raging hot debate on the controversial Taco Bell well illustrates the point. Through articles and battling letters to the editor The Blue Ridge Leader has informed its readers of the issues. This is the job of newspapers and the paper has consistently met this challenge.

Western Loudoun is facing multiple threats and challenges. Today, and tomorrow, we will need to challenge the PATH power line alignment, find better locations for future western schools, stop the environmental degradation of our mountainsides and landscape, seek clean water to drink, support agriculture and rural businesses, and praise and challenge our Board of Supervisors as needed. Who will pick up the struggle, define the issues, and propose solutions when The Blue Ridge Leader is no more?

The burden is squarely on all of us who love western Loudoun and have a deep vested interest in its future. We need to speak out and have our voices heard, trying all the harder now that The Blue Ridge Leader is gone.

So it is time to say “goodbye” to The Blue Ridge Leader. Let’s remember Phil Hahn and thank his widow Jane Ann Simpson for their service to our community through their paper. And thank the staff who has worked so hard to bring us the news and wish them well in their future activities. Let’s hope that the spirit of the paper will live on with all of us as we seek to preserve the unique assets of western Loudoun for ourselves and future generations.

DAR Honors Valley Students

April 24, 2009 by Blue Ridge Leader Schools Comments Off on DAR Honors Valley Students

April 24, 2009

Two Loudoun Valley High School students were honored by the Ketoctin Chapter of the National Society of the Daughters of the American Revolution on April 7.

Teresa McCarthy, 2nd Vice Regent; Wendy Roth, Loudoun Valley High School; Lauren Stephens, Heritage High School; Virginia Burke, Loudoun County High School; Ashlee Bowers, Simpson Middle School; and Joan Whitener, Regent of Ketoctin Chapter enjoy the DAR banquet held early this month.

Teresa McCarthy, 2nd Vice Regent; Wendy Roth, Loudoun Valley High School; Lauren Stephens, Heritage High School; Virginia Burke, Loudoun County High School; Ashlee Bowers, Simpson Middle School; and Joan Whitener, Regent of Ketoctin Chapter enjoy the DAR banquet held early this month.

Katie Russo won the American History Social Science Fair Award for a project called “George Versus George,” which analyzed the part King George played in the American Revolution. Wendy Roth received one of three Good Citizen Awards conferred upon seniors from the county’s high schools chosen for their dependability, service, leadership, and patriotism. Each student is required to write an essay on the topic, “Our American Heritage and Our Responsibility to Preserve It.” The National Society of the Daughters of the American Revolution has presented the Good Citizen Award every year since 1934 and was founded in 1890 to promote patriotism, preserve American history, and support better education for our nation’s children. Its members are direct descendants from the patriots who won American independence during the Revolutionary War.

Firestone to Hold Riding Clinic at Foxcroft

April 24, 2009 by Blue Ridge Leader Equestrian Comments Off on Firestone to Hold Riding Clinic at Foxcroft

April 24, 2009

Next weekend The Foxcroft School will host a riding clinic by Alison Firestone Robitaille, a 1995 Foxcroft graduate and a longtime member of the U.S Equestrian Team. Robitaille has represented the United States in many competitions, including the 1999 Pan American Games, where she helped earn the team Silver Medal, and the 1998 World Equestrian Games, where she was the top-placed U.S. rider. In 1997, Robitaille was one of 12 riders to contribute to the USET’s victory in the inaugural Samsung Nations’ Cup World Series. She was named Leading Rider of that series and 1997 Female Equestrian Athlete of the Year by the U.S. Olympic Committee.

On Saturday, April 25, Robitaille will focus on the flat work critical to successfully negotiating courses, including poles and small jumps. On Sunday, April 26, she will concentrate on more formal course work. Space is still available for the two sessions, which will be held in the recently refurbished indoor arena on Foxcroft’s Middleburg campus. The clinics are open to the public as well as to Foxcroft students. To reserve a spot, call the Foxcroft Riding Department at 540-687-4582.

Spring Farm Tour on Tap

April 24, 2009 by Blue Ridge Leader Business, Farm and garden, Lifestyle, Vineyards Comments Off on Spring Farm Tour on Tap

April 24, 2009

Farms and vineyards throughout Loudoun County will open their gates especially wide on May 16 and 17 to welcome visitors on the Spring Farm Tour. The self-guided driving tour allows people to experience the best of Loudoun’s rural economy: tour a winery, pick strawberries, listen to music, lunch on local foods, and buy seedlings.

Brochures with maps for the Spring Farm Tour are available at Loudoun County libraries and community centers, the Heritage Farm Museum, and the Loudoun Convention and Visitors Association in Leesburg. To have a brochure mailed to you, e-mail info@LoudounFarms.org or call the Loudoun County Department of Economic Development at 703-777-0426. Detailed tour information as well as an interactive map can be found at www.LoudounFarms.org.

Vikings Baseball Drops Third Straight

April 24, 2009 by Blue Ridge Leader Uncategorized Comments Off on Vikings Baseball Drops Third Straight

April 24, 2009

On Saturday the Loudoun Valley varsity baseball team lost their third straight game in as many days, losing to the Yorktown Patriots 5-0. Following their loss to Battlefield, 5-4, and to Fauquier, 14-12, the team was plagued by hitting and defensive problems. Yorktown pitched a complete shutout, allowing only three hits and striking out thirteen Viking hitters. Viking pitcher Carl Larsen got his first start of the season and pitched well despite getting the tough loss. He pitched a complete game allowing five runs (only three earned) and striking out eight Patriot hitters. Wes Walker, Iain Mottice and Alex Owens got the only three hits against the Patriots.

The Vikes fall to 3-6 overall and 2-4 in the Cedar Run District. They play this week against a tough Osbourn Park team and Liberty, both games to be held at Fireman’s Field in Purcellville.

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Sustainable Planet

Not Your Father’s El Nino

15 Aug 2015

noerpel150

NASA and other agencies now forecast the incipient El Nino conditions to continue at least into the winter and the early part of 2016. Figure 1 compares Pacific sea surface temperature anomaly for the El Nino of 1997- 1998 with …

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Ask Dr. Mike

At Wits End

7 Aug 2015

Michael_Pic

Dr. Mike, My sister’s son is autistic, but she is in complete denial. I’ve done my research and he fits a diagnosis of autism. He is three years old and doesn’t talk or socialize. He has meltdowns that are out …

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Just Like Nothing (Else) on Earth

Just Like Nothing (Else) on Earth: Morven Park

7 Aug 2015

morvenpark

I think what strikes me most about this place – as over the top as it is in many ways – is how understated it really is; I know that’ll take some explaining. I’ve been to Morven Park hundreds of …

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Mount Zion Church

1 Jul 2015

timjon

– By Tim Jon So: You’ve never given the American Civil War a great deal of thought, much less walked the grounds of Gettysburg or some of the other, major battleground sites located in our region; you may not be …

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Sushi's Corner

March Sushi

4 Mar 2015

pot of gold

Hello everyone, this is Hokie Cat from Fields of Athenry Farm. Sushi is in big trouble as we speak and is residing in doggy dungeon. I am here to fill you in on what took place. My brother Mountie loves …

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Virginia Gardening

Planting an Allergy-Free Garden

5 May 2015

donnawilliamson

By Donna Williamson Tom Ogren has a long-time interest in allergy-inducing plants. He has written several books on the topic and in February released his latest The Allergy Fighting Garden. He explains why plants can stir up allergies and has …

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Samuel Moore-Sobel

What It Means To Be a Man

7 Aug 2015

moore-sobelnewmug

By Samuel Moore-Sobel As I have gotten older I have noticed that there are more and more young men who ask me for advice. To me it seems silly – I am often not much older than the person asking, …

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Amy V. Smith's Money Talks

A Social Security Strategy Could Enhance Your Retirement Income Plan

7 Aug 2015

Smith0035

By Amy & Dan Smith What do you think of when someone mentions Social Security? Many people consider Social Security and retirement as one and the same. More than 90 percent of working Americans plan for Social Security to replace …

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Student News

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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Blue Ridge Middle Places 11th In National Science League

1 Jul 2015

blueridgemiddleschool

Blue Ridge National Science Day Declared Tuesday, June 10 has been officially been declared Blue Ridge National Science Day. At a recent Purcellville Town Council Meeting, Mayor Kwasi Fraser and members of the town council signed a proclamation designating this …

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Events

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Notaviva Vineyards Monthly Bluegrass Jam is BACK w/Short Hill Mountain Boys

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  • Mark Gunderman on Gifts Within: Second Mount Olive Baptist Church, located in Hamilton, VA, was founded in 1872. The congregation desires to exalt God and...
  • Kathleen Hannon on What It Means To Be a Man: Great article Samuel! We have two daughters and we try to teach them to look for qualities such as...
  • R. Ohneiser Esq. on Congress and MWAA VS Loudoun Taxpayers: Interesting discussion but let's consider how to actually resolve this problem permanently FOR THE BENEFIT OF LOUDOUN NOT JUST FOR...
  • Nan Siegel on Remembering Mabel: A lovely, heartfelt tribute. Though I never met Mabel, I think she must have had a wonderful life, full of...

View From the Ridge

An Open Letter to the Citizens of Purcellville

5 May 2015

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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 sessions June 4, 11 and 18 at 7:00 p.m. at town hall for the proposed sweeping zoning changes. These major …

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Editorial

Getting Purcellville Out of the Conflicts of Interest Trap

7 Aug 2015

town of purcellville sign

Three Virginia laws address openness in government: the Virginia Freedom of Information Act (VFOIA), The Virginia Public Records Act (VPRA) and The Virginia State & Local Government Conflict of Interests Act (VCOIA). VFOIA guides how public bodies conduct their meetings and regulates access to government records. VPRA establishes basic rules about what constitutes a public record and what the government’s …

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Lifestyle

Loudoun Health Officials Remind Septic System Owners of Need to Pump Out

28 Aug 2015

Loudoun County Seal Color

The Loudoun County Health Department reminds owners of septic systems that routine pumping out of their systems can extend the system’s life and reduce the risk of untreated sewage surfacing or backing up into a house. Loudoun County requires owners of conventional onsite septic systems to have their tanks pumped out at least every five years. Tanks must be pumped …

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Historic Village Prepares for 46th Annual Bluemont Fair

25 Aug 2015

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The sleepy Blue Ridge village of Bluemont in western-most Loudoun County, Virginia, is bustling with activity as it prepares for the 46th ANNUAL BLUEMONT FAIR, September 19 & 20, 2015 from 10AM to 5PM both days, rain or shine. Admission is still only $5/adults, under 10 free, with free parking available. One-way traffic and crosswalks will be enforced in the …

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Register for Rally for the Cure™

24 Aug 2015

blueridge2

Want to participate in a fun tournament for a great cause? Then sign up to participate in the Stoneleigh Women’s Golf Association’s annual Rally for the Cure ™ golf tournament in Support of Breast Cancer Awareness Month! This is a great opportunity to play at the golf course recently cited as being the Prettiest Golf Course in Northern Virginia by …

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Wild Loudoun

Dragonflies – To See Is To Believe

7 Aug 2015

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Shadow Darner. Unicorn Clubtail. Black Shouldered Spinyleg. Blue Dasher. Ebony Jewelwing. Calico Pennant. Sanddragon. Their names conger up some magical place inhabited by devils and demons, elegant queens, daring lovers – creatures you would need to see with your own eyes to believe really existed. But, each of these, including the Calico Pennant, is actually one of the most common …

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Around Virginia

Governor McAuliffe Launches Governor’s Council on Youth Entrepreneurship

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Governor Terry McAuliffe today signed Executive Order 47 establishing the Governor’s Council on Youth Entrepreneurship, which shall be responsible for coordinating and implementing youth entrepreneurship initiatives and fostering the growth of the entrepreneurial ecosystem for young people in Virginia. “The foundation of the new Virginia economy rests on the strength …

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Congress and MWAA VS Loudoun Taxpayers

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By Delegate Dave LaRock It’s no secret that population growth and business development have left Loudoun County, especially busy areas to the east, with some pretty challenging traffic. The process of expanding the local network of roads and transit always seems to be playing catch-up, usually tied to availability of …

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Governor Signs Senator Black’s Campus Sexual Assault Bill

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On Thursday, May 28, Sen. Richard Black traveled to Richmond for the bill signing ceremony of his bill, Senate Bill 712, the Campus Sexual Assault Bill. Black’s law will change the way that Virginia’s colleges and universities handle sexual assault cases.  “When I heard about the Hannah Graham case, I …

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Sports

Drew Hunter Heading To Pan American Games

7 Aug 2015

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Loudoun Valley’s Drew Hunter placed second in the United States Track and Field 1500-meter run Junior National Championship. That earned him a spot on the United States Junior Team going to the Pan American Games in Edmonton, Canada in late July. Drew lost to college freshman Blake Haney of the …

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American Legion Post 34 Hosting Mid-Atlantic Regional Baseball Tournament

5 Aug 2015

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Batter up! Chartered in 1919 by an act of Congress, the American Legion is one of our country’s oldest, largest and most prestigious veteran’s organizations – dedicated to mentoring youth, sponsoring community programs, promoting national security and supporting veterans and members of the armed forces. Specific programs include scholarships, scouting, …

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This Month in History

July, 1776: Loudoun’s Revolution Within A Revolution

1 Jul 2015

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– By Andrea Gaines Loudoun County was heavily invested in the fight for independence from Great Britain. Loudouner Francis Lightfoot Lee was one of 56 delegates to sign the Declaration of Independence. More Loudouners served in General George Washington’s army than any other county in Virginia, and the county’s enormous …

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Mary Rose Lunde

More Than a GPA

7 Aug 2015

Lunde new

By Mary Rose Lunde In school we are measured in every way based on a number system from a point scale resulting in grades then translated into a GPA that can’t be easily fixed in just one semester. Students are forced to think that all they have to achieve is …

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Sarah's Closet

Go Pink … As Pink As You Like

1 Jul 2015

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– By Sarah Nearis Look at these sweet and summery pink blouses and tops. Don’t you want to try one on? Some women are afraid to wear pink, thinking it’s a bit too feminine. But, pink comes in such a wide variety of shades – from soft mauves to fuchsias …

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Letters

Thank You Purcellville

7 Aug 2015

town of purcellville sign

I want to express my sincere appreciation for the outpouring of support by the local business owners and residents in relationship to my challenge to …

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Independence Won – Much Left To Be Done

1 Jul 2015

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With graduations behind us and summer vacations ahead, we have much to look forward to. My summer will be full of events and opportunities to …

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Reflections for Father’s Day, a Child’s Constitutional Rights

15 Jun 2015

Bob Ohneiser

I’ve been a licensed attorney and a father since the late 80’s. Yet, I wonder about how many of our country’s legal theories – theories …

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