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Bargain-hunters flock to now legendary Route 11 yard crawl

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“Don’t give up, don’t get pale, straight ahead, for more yard sale.”

It is going to be a fantastic, festive day, attracting tons of people who are visiting the Lower Shenandoah Valley for the first time. The Valley’s stunning summer scenery, with lush greens and spectacular mountain views will provide each newcomer with an unforgettable experience to take back home and tell family and friends. Folks from all over the country are becoming interested in the event. Vendors within the mid-Atlantic area recognize the Yard Crawl as a major happening for selling product. The Yard Crawl has morphed into a cultural phenomenon and an economic boon to the small towns of the Valley community.

Newtown History Center yard crawl crowd on the museum green. Courtesy Stone House Foundation.

Each year more and more people are participating in the Route 11 (Old Valley Pike) Yard Crawl. A yearly event since 2005 (Stephens City and Middletown joined in 2008), held during the second Saturday in August; the Yard Crawl is a 43-mile-long yard sale that stretches from Stephens City’s Newtown Commons through seven historic small towns to New Market. As many as 1,000 vendors will be set up along the route and an average of 30,000 to 40,000 vehicles will rubberneck their way through each town. Over 3,000 individual sellers will clear their attics, basements, garages and carports and set up for the marathon event.


The Route 11 Yard Crawl is a partnership of the Valley Towns of Stephens City, Middletown, Strasburg, Woodstock, Edinburg, Mt. Jackson and New Market, the Shenandoah County Chamber of Commerce and the Shenandoah County Tourism Office. It is all about experiencing the heart and soul of small-town America.

The Yard Crawl is celebrating (Saturday, August 14) its 16th anniversary of flea market madness! It’s Virginia’s longest yard crawl, offering miles of yard sales, food trucks, fresh produce stands and indescribable family fun. The Crawl typically includes private residences, businesses and popup vendors who set out tables of sale items in empty parking lots, parks and sidewalks filled with tents and trailers, drawing crowds of yard crawlers and frugal shoppers along the route. Saleable items can include antiques, vintage collectibles, books, jewelry, furniture, tools, clothing, sporting goods, toys and the most unusual objects imaginable. Just start fantasizing about all the incredible treasures waiting to be discovered! It is almost Yard Sale Heaven.

Stephens City Lions Club advertises prime vendor space for rent on the Newtown Commons across from Clem’s Garage. Courtesy Mark Gunderman.

Local businesses can count on a 30% increase above normal summer revenue. The Crawl attracts thousands of visitors from around Virginia and other neighboring states and is a godsend for area restaurants, hotels and small businesses. The Crawl is a huge economic driver for the small-town communities to include our area nonprofits. The event has encouraged additional yard sales on adjoining days, soliciting tourism dollars from bargain-hunters and summer travelers alike.

Dudley Rinker, Chair of the Lions Club Yard Crawl Committee says, “business in Stephens City has increased with calls for more vendor spaces this year.” There are approximately 90 vendor spaces allotted at Newtown Commons on Main Street (where the yard crawl begins on the north end). The Commons are at 75% capacity, but rentals are filling quickly and there is a need to expand spaces at the Old School lot on the south of town,” Rinker said. Currently Lions Club has 17 spaces rented at the Old School and can expand to 50 spaces, if needed. The vendor spaces are 16′ X 20′ and cost $20 per spot. “Vendors can join spaces if they require additional room,” Rinker said. According to the Lions Club website, profits from the rentals provide financial and human resource support to sight/hearing conservation, youth activities and community improvement.

Former Lions Chair, Jack Treece, claims about one third of the residents living on Main Street also set up on front porches to sell their own wares. “Between vendors and locals as many as 400 people can be selling product within the Stephens City town limits,” Treece said.

Rick Kriebel, Manager of Collections and Programs, Newtown History Center, says he has 16 vendor spaces (front porch, south yard and parkway) for rent with excellent locations. Kriebel cites many prime spots are still available. Kim Begnaud, Trinity Lutheran Church Community Outreach Minister, has 10 designated spaces for rent in the church parking lot on Main Street. “However, all spots have been taken,” Begnaud reported.

Yard Crawl traffic looking south from Stephens City to Signal Knob, Strasburg, VA. Courtesy Pamela A. Miller.

Yard Crawlers can prepare for the event by bringing small bills and change to make shopping more convenient, but also may get you a discount by enabling a smoother transaction for the vendor. The Crawl officially opens at 7 a.m. on Saturday, but the stores and antiques sellers typically welcome early birds. Some Route 11-yard crawl vendors setup on the Friday before and traffic usually begins to pick up on Route 11 by early Friday afternoon. Saturday is the prime travel day and traffic will be stop and go for the entire stretch of Valley Pike. Adept shoppers begin on Friday or early Saturday before the event to locate any rare or collectible items for cherry-picking at daybreak.

By the end of this epic day folks are doing a lot of “lookie loo” shopping, driving slowly by the roadside stands and viewing from the car. Churches, businesses and civic organizations sell snacks, boxed lunches and beverages all along this historic thoroughfare. Bring bottled water to stay hydrated. Stow away nylon rope, lashing straps or bungee cords to tie down any oversized purchases.

The event will be held rain or shine. Expect traffic congestion along Route 11 most of the day. Watch for pedestrians crossing Route 11. Navigate streets carefully, as pedestrians get distracted by displays and may appear to meander across the street without watching for oncoming traffic. Park vehicles completely off the road and do not block driveways. No double parking is permitted along the route.

May God continue to bless our Shenandoah Valley communities.

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Sons of the American Revolution participate in dedication ceremony honoring William Wirt Henry

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The plaque honoring William Wirt Henry. Photos courtesy of Cat Schwetke.

On September 10, 2021, the Colonel James Wood II (CJWII) Chapter of the Virginia Society Sons of the American Revolution participated in a dedication ceremony at Red Hill, Virginia. A plaque was presented by the Virginia Society to honor William Wirt Henry. The plaque was laid on the grounds of Red Hill, the final home of Patrick Henry.

Participating were members from Colonel William Grayson (CWG), Culpeper Minutemen (CMM), Dan River (DR), Fairfax Resolves (FR), George Mason (GM), George Washington (GW), James Monroe (JM), Patrick Henry (PH), Richard Henry Lee (RHL), Thomas Jefferson (TJ) and Thomas Nelson, Jr (TNJ) Chapters.

William was born 1831 at Red Hill, the grandson of Patrick Henry. He was a lawyer, politician, historian and writer. He authored a biography of Patrick Henry and served in both houses of the Virginia General Assembly, was the President of the Virginia Bar Association, the American Historical Association and the Founding President of the Virginia Society Sons of the American Revolution. William eventually became the owner of the plantation and his office was located at the site where the plaque was installed.


Virginia State Color Guard led by Commander Ken Bonner.

President Jeff Thomas emceed the program which was opened with the Virginia State Color Guard led by Commander Ken Bonner presenting the colors. President Thomas gave a presentation on the life of William Wirt Henry. Next, Marshall Henry (a descendant of Patrick Henry) and compatriot Dale Corey unveiled the plaque.

The Colonel James Wood II Chapter was represented by Dale Corey, Thomas “Chip” Daniel, Brett Osborn and Barry Schwoerer. Dual members present included Ken Bonner (Fairfax Resolves), Dave Cook (Fairfax Resolves), Mike Dennis (CMM), Charles Jameson (CMM), Bill Schwetke (CMM), Doug Schwetke (CMM) and Mike Weyler (CWG). Other compatriots with the color guard were Forrest Crain (FR), Mike Geisinger (DR), Gary Hall (DR), Ken Morris (GM) and Jim Russell (JM).

Colonel James Wood II Chapter members from left to right: Dale Corey, Charles Jameson, Doug Schwetke, Jeff Thomas, Thomas “Chip” Daniel, Mike Dennis, Barry Schwoerer, Brett Osborn, Bill Schwetke and Mike Weyler.

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Constitution Day 2021 event at the Wayside Inn in Middletown, VA on Friday, September 17th

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Join Winsome Sears to celebrate the 234th anniversary of our United States Constitution and honor our men and women in the U.S. Military.

LtCol Daniel Gade will pay tribute to the Fallen, music performed by the Steel Peach Band, and a Constitutional Presentation by Bishop Larry Johnson, Liberty Man.

Join the celebration with Winsome Sears and patriots from Frederick, Clarke, Loudoun, Page, Warren, Shenandoah Counties, and Winchester City.

It’s a free event, but please register here.


 


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Oktoberfest in Rappahannock is Back

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Wakefield Country Day School is set to host the 2nd Annual Oktoberfest, located on a 12-acre campus in Huntly, on October 2nd from 4-8 pm. All are welcome to attend this family-friendly event, featuring festive live German and Austrian music by the Edelweiss Band. Their style ranges from traditional Biergarten tunes to occasional folk, and Latin vibes.

Food will be available for purchase from a German-inspired bar, dessert, and dinner menu. Featured beer will be a traditional Oktoberfest from Far Gohn Brewing Company of Culpeper, and an Optimal Wit from Port City Brewing Company in Alexandria.

Children of all ages are invited to play in the kinder zone area, available with multiple bounce houses, art and crafts booths, face painting, hair braiding, balloon art, potato sack races, pumpkin rolling contests, musical chairs, and more. The entire event takes place outdoors, and for safety, activities are distanced throughout. A Bavarian costume contest will take place, with the winners being crowned Mr. and Mrs. Oktoberfest 2021.

Presale tickets are $5 (extended until Monday 9/27 for Royal Examiner readers) and $8 at the door— unless you arrive in full (yes, top to bottom) Bavarian attire, in which case, entry is free! Tickets are available at wcdsva.org/Oktoberfest.


All WCDS events are run by a team of dedicated volunteers dedicated to supporting the student body. Wakefield Country Day School (WCDS) is a non-profit, preschool-12th-grade independent school located in serene Huntly, Virginia. Located at 1059 Zachary Taylor Highway in between Front Royal and Flint Hill. Just look for the blue and white flags! The Tapping of the Keg Ceremony begins at 4 pm sharp.

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Virginia Department of Veterans Services and Virginia’s Community Colleges hosting 2021 Military and Veterans Education Summit

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The Virginia Department of Veterans Services (VDVS) in partnership with Virginia’s Community Colleges will host the Virginia Military and Veterans Education Summit (VMES) on September 22 and 23, 2021.

The two-day Summit, which will be held as a virtual event this year, will bring together administrators, advisors and faculty members from Virginia’s community and four-year colleges and universities, school officials, government and business leaders and representatives from student veteran organizations. There is no cost to register online and participate in the Summit.

The Summit agenda will include a variety of presentations and panel discussions focusing on student veterans, career planning, educational benefits, opportunities, and community resources with a major focus on promoting advanced manufacturing and technical career pathways in the Commonwealth.

“Military-connected students comprise a growing segment of higher education at Virginia’s community colleges and four-year educational institutions,” said Martina Murray, Director of Education Programs at the Virginia Department of Veterans Services. “There is a great deal of diversity among these students in demographics and their service backgrounds. This is why it’s so important to develop comprehensive and targeted support services for these unique students.”


“Here in Virginia, we recognize the valuable contributions that our student veterans make to the economic vitality of our state. Our goal is to assure that, together with our partner educational institutions, we can direct them to successful positions in the civilian workforce and especially to jobs in the growing advanced manufacturing and technology sectors,” said Patrice Jones, VDVS Education Workforce Manager.

For more information on the Virtual Virginia Military and Veterans Education Summit, including how to register and participate, please visit vmes.windrosemedia.com or contact Ms. Bobbie Blakely, VMES Chair, at 804.310.0609 or bobbie.blakely@dvs.virginia.gov.


About the Virginia Department of Veterans Services

The Virginia Department of Veterans Services (VDVS) is a state government agency with more than 40 locations across the Commonwealth of Virginia. VDVS traces its history to 1928 and the establishment of the Virginia War Service Bureau to assist Virginia’s World War I veterans.  Today, VDVS assists veterans and their families in filing claims for federal veterans benefits and provides veterans and family members with linkages to services including behavioral healthcare, housing, employment, education and other programs. The agency operates two state veterans nursing homes, provides an honored final resting place for veterans and their families at three state veterans cemeteries, and operates the Virginia War Memorial. For more information, please visit www.dvs.virginia.gov.


About Virginia Community Colleges

Since 1966, Virginia’s Community Colleges have given everyone the opportunity to learn and develop the right skills so lives and communities are strengthened. By making higher education and workforce training available in every part of Virginia, we elevate all of Virginia. Together,

Virginia’s Community Colleges serve more than 271,000 students each year. For more information, please visit www.vccs.edu.

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Birthday of the Constitution to be Celebrated

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The celebration of the 234th Birthday of the Constitution is set for Saturday, September 18, 2021, beginning at 10 am at Mt. Hebron Cemetery in Winchester, Virginia. Presiding will be Pastor Alan Morrison, a well-known minister in the northern Shenandoah Valley.

The event is a joint celebration involving local churches and various local organizations. The Shenandoah Christian Alliance, Sons of the American Revolution, and a number of churches and other organizations are participating. The Black Robed Regiment will lay a wreath remembering the clergy who preached liberty during the Revolutionary War period. American Heritage Girls and Trail Life Boys from Shenandoah, West Virginia, and Warren County, Virginia will participate in this historic gathering.

There will be the presentation of the colors by the James Wood II Chapter of the Sons of the American Revolution, headed by Dale Corey, Commander of the SAR Color Guard. Youth will bring in the historic flags flown during the War for Independence. Additionally, the youth will recite portions of our founding documents, with lectures to follow by local experts on the founding of the United States of America.

The Rev. Larry W. Johnson of Warren County, also known as Liberty Man, and Dale Carpenter, will give the youth participants “Citizenship Certificates” recognizing their participation. Johnson gives lectures and presents programs on the history of the American Revolution. Carpenter, who heads the Shenandoah Alliance, is a retired business executive.


The Constitution will be two-hundred and thirty-four years old on September 17th. Virginia patriots helped to write this most important document, with James Madison of Orange County given credit as the primary author. General George Washington presided at the Continental Congress, where the document was approved. Washington as a young man lived in Frederick County and was a surveyor. He was elected to the House of Burgesses, representing Frederick County. He later was Commander of the American Army in the War of Independence and became the first President of the United States.

This celebration began in 2013 with the placement of monuments in the General Daniel Morgan Cemetery, a part of Mt. Hebron Cemetery, commemorating forty American Revolutionary soldiers buried in Mt. Hebron Cemetery and forty-two War of 1812 soldiers buried there. A hero of the war, General Daniel Morgan of Winchester, is also buried in Mt. Hebron Cemetery. The name of each soldier is inscribed on the monuments.

For more information, call the Rt. Rev. Larry W. Johnson at 540.454.4129, or email larrywjohnson@embarqmail.com.

Father of our Country- George Washington, Our First President

Birthday of the Constitution
10:00 A.M. Final Edition
September 18, 2021
Mt. Hebron’s Daniel Morgan Cemetery, Winchester, Virginia

Presiding Pastor Alan L. Morrison**
Prologue-Pastor Alan Morrison**- Christ Reigns Presbyterian Church, Cedar Creek, VA.

• Dedication of Program-Rev. Jim Simmons**, Baptist Pastor, Hebron Baptist Church, Gore, VA
• Welcome, Dale Carpenter**, Shenandoah Christian Alliance. Portraying Gen. G. Washington.
• Great Procession and Posting of Colors*- SAR Color Guard,
• Greetings and Remembrance, Commander Dale Corey**, Color Guard Col. James Wood II Chapter, SAR.

Historic Flags Presented:
American Heritage Girls WV0356 Trisha Richardson, Advisor, and Heritage Girls of Warren County, Abbi Griffeth, Advisor, and Trail Life Boys, Lee Richardson, Advisor

• Presentation of Founding Documents to Gen. Washington by Youth.
• The Pledge of Allegiance – Trail Life Member Leads Audience.
• Prayer for Revolutionary War Soldiers- The Rt. Rev. Larry W. Johnson**
• The Declaration of Independence Opening Sentences- Heritage Girl Member.
• The Constitution Preamble. Trail Life Member.
• Flags Presented to Gen. Washington. Youth may be seated.
• “The Relationship Between the Declaration and the Constitution,”- Mark Quimby, Army Retired.
• “The Bill of Rights” an Exegesis-Kelly O’Neal and John Austin, Shenandoah Christian Alliance.
• Prayers for our Military, Police, and Law Officers- Pastor Roger Orman, Chester Gap Baptist Church.
• Prayers for EMTs, Nurses, Doctors, and Hearth Care Workers. Billy Williams. Chester Gap Baptist Church.
• Prayers for all Pastors and Congregations, Tom Reed** Elder, First Christian Church, Winchester.
• A Special Prayer for our Nation-Charles Market.
• Alan Morrison Recognizes a Woman who questions Dr. Benjamin Franklin (Portrayed by Rev. Jim Simmons and Woman by Susan Howard)
• Pray of George Washington by The Rt. Rev. Larry W. Johnson.
• Placement of Wreathe by Black Robed Regiment Descendants of Patriot Clergy who Preached Liberty.
• Awards. Presentation of Leadership Certificates.
• Benediction, **, Rev. Jim Simmons, Col. James Wood II Chapter, Sons of the American Revolution.

Participating Organizations:
 Shenandoah Christian Alliance, Northern Shenandoah Valley, VA
 Col. James Wood II, Chapter Virginia Society of the Sons of the American Revolution, Color Guard.
 Christ Reigns Presbyterian Church, Cedar Creek, VA
 The Anglican Church of Virginia, Front Royal, VA
 Trail Life and American Heritage Girls of Shenandoah County Troop WV0356. Grace Bible Church. Shenandoah Junction, WV.
 American Heritage Girls of Warren County
 Black Robed Regiment, VA
 Hebron Baptist Church, Gore, VA
 Chester Gap Baptist Church, Front Royal, VA
 First Christian Church, Winchester, VA
**Descendant of an American Revolutionary Soldier.

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Black & White Masquerade – October 9th – benefits Front Royal Pregnancy Center

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Jig n’ Jive Dance Studio is hosting this fundraiser with the Silver Tones, featuring two long sets of big band swing and a dance lesson.

Tickets are just $15 and will be available for purchase at the door. Cash or check only, please.

The evening will begin with a dance lesson, and ballroom and swing music will be piped in during the band break. Come dressed in your best black and white attire and swing the night away with the Silver Tones! All proceeds benefit the Front Royal Pregnancy Center.

 

Silver Tones styling sax section, Dan Hurlow (left), Joe MacFarland (center), and Jeff Edmonds (right).


Black & White Masquerade

Saturday, October 9, 2021
6:30 to 9:30 pm

New Hope Bible Church
80 N. Lake Avenue
Front Royal, Virginia

The Silver Tones Swing Band is made up of professional musicians from the Northern Virginia area and is led by trumpeter Dave Shuma and vocalist Wendy Marie. Since the band’s inception in 2012, the Silver Tones have performed all over the DC Metropolitan Area, including at the Smithsonian’s Air and Space Museum, the Spanish Ballroom at Glen Echo, the Harris Pavilion, the Hylton Center for the Performing Arts, and countless galas and celebrations. The band is proud to bring to the stage their Silver Belles vocal trio, which recreates the exciting music of the Andrews Sisters from the 1940s era. Solo vocalists, Wendy Marie and Gene Bates, also bring audiences the dynamic music of Natalie Cole, Nat King Cole, Frank Sinatra, Bette Midler, Ella Fitzgerald, Bobby Darin, and Peggy Lee, plus many others. The Silver Tones’ show consists of the classic big band swing hits from the 1940s plus many more show-stopping tunes from the 1950s, 1960s, and beyond! Come swing with us!

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Upcoming Events

Sep
19
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8:00 am 2021 Gnarled Orchard Hard Cider ... @ Valley View Farm
2021 Gnarled Orchard Hard Cider ... @ Valley View Farm
Sep 19 @ 8:00 am – Sep 20 @ 12:30 pm
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Come enjoy the challenging routes at Sky Meadows State Park and Valley View Farm, home of the Gnarled Orchard. These courses are knotty, knot nice at the farm as they are a mix of cross[...]
Sep
20
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2:00 pm Trauma-Informed Training @ ONLINE
Trauma-Informed Training @ ONLINE
Sep 20 @ 2:00 pm – 4:00 pm
Trauma-Informed Training @ ONLINE
WARREN COALITION OFFERS FREE TRAUMA-INFORMED TRAINING IN SEPTEMBER Have you ever felt alone? Do you wonder why you react the way you do? Do you work with children? If you answered yes to any of[...]
Sep
23
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6:00 pm Monument to Mosby’s Men Ceremony @ Prospect Hill Cemetery
Monument to Mosby’s Men Ceremony @ Prospect Hill Cemetery
Sep 23 @ 6:00 pm – 7:30 pm
Monument to Mosby’s Men Ceremony @ Prospect Hill Cemetery
The Col. John S. Mosby Camp, Sons of Confederate Veterans, will lead the annual “Monument to Mosby’s Men Ceremony” commemorating the fallen of Mosby’s command at 6 pm on Thursday, September 23rd, at Front Royal’s[...]
Sep
25
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10:00 am 3rd Annual French & Indian War W... @ Abram's Delight
3rd Annual French & Indian War W... @ Abram's Delight
Sep 25 @ 10:00 am – 5:00 pm
3rd Annual French & Indian War Weekend @ Abram's Delight
Saturday, September 25, and Sunday, September 26, from 10 am to 5 pm. 18th Century Colonial encampments with historical interpretation of British, French and Native Americans on the Western frontier of the Virginia Colony during[...]
10:00 am National Public Lands Day @ Sky Meadows State Park
National Public Lands Day @ Sky Meadows State Park
Sep 25 @ 10:00 am – 3:00 pm
National Public Lands Day @ Sky Meadows State Park
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11:00 am Friends of Sky Meadows Farm Market @ Sky Meadows State Park
Friends of Sky Meadows Farm Market @ Sky Meadows State Park
Sep 25 @ 11:00 am – 3:00 pm
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Historic Area. Stop by the Friends of Sky Meadows Farmer’s Market for tasty preserved products, heirloom vegetables, eggs and more. Pick from seasonal vegetables grown in Sky Meadows’ authentic Kitchen Garden, July through September. Grab[...]
Sep
26
Sun
10:00 am 3rd Annual French & Indian War W... @ Abram's Delight
3rd Annual French & Indian War W... @ Abram's Delight
Sep 26 @ 10:00 am – 5:00 pm
3rd Annual French & Indian War Weekend @ Abram's Delight
Saturday, September 25, and Sunday, September 26, from 10 am to 5 pm. 18th Century Colonial encampments with historical interpretation of British, French and Native Americans on the Western frontier of the Virginia Colony during[...]
Sep
27
Mon
2:00 pm Trauma-Informed Training @ ONLINE
Trauma-Informed Training @ ONLINE
Sep 27 @ 2:00 pm – 4:00 pm
Trauma-Informed Training @ ONLINE
WARREN COALITION OFFERS FREE TRAUMA-INFORMED TRAINING IN SEPTEMBER Have you ever felt alone? Do you wonder why you react the way you do? Do you work with children? If you answered yes to any of[...]
Sep
28
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7:00 pm Community Parent Night @ Dominion Ridge Academy
Community Parent Night @ Dominion Ridge Academy
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4:00 pm Oktoberfest: Family Fun Day @ Wakefield Country Day School
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Oct 2 @ 4:00 pm – 8:00 pm
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October 2, 2021 from 4pm-8pm All are welcome to attend the 2nd Annual Oktoberfest at Wakefield Country Day School. Loosen your Leiderhosen and get ready for Oktoberfest! This year, the Edelweiss Band is coming to[...]