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Congratulations to Skyline High School Seniors – Class of 2020



Royal Examiner presents the Skyline High School Class of 2020. Congratulations to these wonderful seniors on their hard work and deserved accomplishments! We wish you the best in your next big endeavors. Photos courtesy of Victor O’Neill Studios, Tolliver Studios, and Nik’s Piks Photography.

Brandon Ahlemann

Mackenzie Amos

Robert Atkins

Jacquelyn Bailey

Jason Balderson

Miranda Baltimore

The most important thing in your life is to live your life with integrity and to not give into peer pressure to try to be something that you’re not.”
—Ellen DeGeneres

Benjamin Barnett

Samuel Baugher

Jacob Bennett

Taylor Bolt

Taylor Bowers

Emily Boyd

Julie Bravo

“The old rules are crumbling and nobody knows what the new rules are. So make up your own rules.”
—Neil Gaiman

Cheyenne Broadbent

Heather Brogan

Brianna Brookman

Dakota Brown

Aiden Brune

Lonnie Campbell

“Graduation is not the end; it’s the beginning.”
—Senator Orrin Hatch

Sarah Carcamo

Charles Carey

Hannah Carlson

Kaleb Carnes

David Carter

Jose Castillo

“Start where you are. Use what you have. Do what you can.”
—Arthur Ashe

Breanna Challis-Steshoski

Owen Chenery

Anna Christopher

Zane Clark

Gage Clem

Mark Clem Jr.

“Education is not preparation for life; education is life itself.”
—John Dewey

Derrick Coleman

Sophia Conrow

Kierstyn Cornwell

Rangel Covarrubias

Sydney Crafton

Joshua Craighead

“There are far, far better things ahead than any we leave behind.”
—C.S. Lewis

Lacey Cross

Skyler Cross

Michael Davis

Andre’ Deville

Ashleigh Dickman

Alyssa Dodson

“To accomplish great things, we must not only act, but also dream, not only plan, but also believe.”
—Anatole France

Anthony Domino

Caleb Dotson

Brian Downs

Victoria Dunivan

Catelyn Egnor

Natalia Ferguson

“Your life is your story, and the adventure ahead of you is the journey to fulfill your own purpose and potential.”
—Kerry Washington

Eve Fincham

Hudson Fortney

Ashley Foster

Bryona Foster

Alyssa Foxwell

Willow Frenzel

“What lies behind us and what lies before us are small matters compared to what lies within us.”
—Ralph Waldo Emerson

Lindsey Fristoe

Mattison Fritts

Ashly Osorio Funes

Jeremy Funk

Marcus Funk

Christina Geiser

“The fireworks begin today. Each diploma is a lighted match. Each one of you is a fuse.”
—Edward Koch

Carrie Gibson

Nolan Golden

Hayden Gray

Edwin Green Jr.

Chandler Griffith

Ethan Gue

“There are no regrets in life. Just lessons.”
—Jennifer Aniston

Dominic Guizar

Briana Gutierrez

Ulices J. Gutierrez

Kaliyah Hackley

Alexandra Haffer

Samuel Harris

“Take pride in how far you’ve come. Have faith in how far you can go. But don’t forget to enjoy the journey.”
—Michael Josephson

Jaylon Harrison

Megan Haun

Nicholas Heberle

Olivia Heflin

Brandon Henry

Jarrett Henry

“The only thing you can do in this life is pursue your passions, celebrate your bloopers and never stop following your fear.”
—Grace Helbig

Luis Vasquez Hernandez

Joseph Hillaert II

Alexa Hire

Kayla Hudson

Georgina Hyers

Alexis Isom

“Kid, you’ll move mountains.”
—Dr. Seuss

Luke Jakobsen

Carli Jenkins

Ayanna Johnson

Jasmine Johnson

Teagan Johnson

Abbigail Kapp

“Your imagination is your preview of life’s coming attractions.”
—Albert Einstein

Jordan Kenney

Adriane Kinsey

Alex Lalumondiere

Justin Laney

Magdalene Lavey

Aaron Lawson

“Every person you meet knows something you don’t; learn from them.”
—H Jackson Brown Jr.

Corinna Laycock

Logan Lockhart

Montana Lockhart

Gavin Long

Alyssa Look

Elizabeth Loveland-Gonzalez

“Twenty years from now you will be more disappointed by the things you didn’t do than by the ones you did do. So throw off the bowlines. Sail away from the safe harbor. Catch the trade winds in your sails. Explore. Dream. Discover.”
—Mark Twain

Jacob Lowery

Kaley Mahoney

Benjamin Mandiak

Destinee Manning

Christian Massey

Dylan Mauck

“If you want something you’ve never had, you must be willing to do something you’ve never done.”
—Thomas Jefferson

Matthew McHargue

Lemuel McKenney IV

Megan McLendon

Reid McMillin-Goodwin

Andres Becerra Mendez

James Miller

“You have to dance a little bit before you step out into the world each day, because it changes the way you walk.”
—Sandra Bullock

Madison Miller

Seth Mills

Jenavieve Moyer

Savannah Mullins

Andrew Neale

Kiara Newman

“Be who you are and say what you feel, because those who mind don’t matter and those who matter don’t mind.”
—Dr. Seuss

Kristal Nguyen

Phu Nguyen

Emma Nicola

Lauryn Nielsen

Jayden Norwood

Riley Oates

“Don’t ever confuse the two, your life and your work. The second is only part of the first.”
—Anna Quindlen

Colin Parsons

Cameron Payne

Jasmine Payton

Dionte Peacock

Hunter Peacock

Dakota Pearson

“I encourage you to live with life. Be courageous, adventurous. Give us a tomorrow, more than we deserve.”
—Maya Angelou

McKenzie Pence

Miura Person

Chloe Phillips

Mary Pierce

Ethan Potter

Matthew Presley

“Get busy living or get busy dying.”
—Stephen King

Jordan Price

Karlee Priest

Brianna Rack

Mia Ralls

Justin Reid

Kobe Rhodes

“Life is ten percent what happens to you and ninety percent how you respond to it.”
—Charles Swindoll

Lindsay Ritenour

Joseph Rizzo

Morgan Robinson

Christopher Rodgers

Imani Ross

“Opportunity is missed by most people because it is dressed in overalls and looks like work.”
—Thomas Edison

Jake Ross

Rian Ruffner

Damarys Ruiz

Julian Sanchez

Madison Satterfield

Abigail Scriva

Alexis Sears

“Even if you are on the right track, you will get run over if you just sit there.”
—Will Rogers

Chad Sears Jr.

Hannah Shamblin

David Shenk

Jennifer Shenk

Katlyn Showers

Taja Showers

“There is no script. Live your life. Soak it all in.”
—Dick Costolo

Layth Smadi

Sayf Smadi

Karlie Smelser

Avery Smith

Angeline Sotelo

Miranda Sowers

“If opportunity doesn’t knock, build a door.”
—Milton Berle

Nathaniel Spiewak

Wyatt Spiker

Jenna Stanley

Thomas Stelzl

Jaime Stewart

“We know what we are, but know not what we may be.”

Savannah Stiles

Roan Sudermann

Tasha Tharpe

Andrew Thompson

Zachary Unger

Jace Ursey

“Spread joy. Chase your wildest dreams.”
—Patch Adams

Sierra Viera

Austin White

Sabrina Wilkins

Walker Wilkins

Brooklyn Williams

Carolyn Williams

“Creativity is intelligence having fun.”
—Albert Einstein

Kandice Williams

Kayla Wood

Ethan Wooddell

“You can’t climb the ladder of success with your hands in your pockets.”
—Arnold Schwarzenegger

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Local News

Shopping Small has its rewards



Shopping Small does have its rewards in Front Royal.

Beginning on November 28, 2020, and continuing through December 20, 2020, shop ANY small business in Warren County and turn in your receipts for inclusion in a weekly gift bag drawing!

Here are the rules:

Receipts must be submitted for purchases totaling $100.00 or more and purchases must be made on the same day.

Any purchase from any Warren County small business (does not include chain stores, gas stations, or grocery stores) made on the same day will count toward your entry.

You may enter the drawings as many times as you wish.

Drawings for gift bags will be held every Monday morning and the winner will be chosen from only that week’s entries.

Receipts should be presented at Key Move Properties, 403 E Main St, for verification for drawing entry.

Weekly winners will receive gift bags of local business donated goods including gift cards. The value of gift bags may vary.

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Numbers down but enthusiasm high for Turkey Egg Hunt 2020



It may not have been the 2020 Thanksgiving Day Turkey Egg Hunt originally envisioned to run from the Gazebo-Village Commons area up a closed-to-vehicular-traffic East Main Street involving “hidden” eggs in a variety of downtown business locations and a larger contingent of egg hunting families. But according to organizers Mr. and Mrs. Turkey (aka Willie and Nina Huck of C&C Frozen Treats) and musical backdrop providers Chris and Sue Laurence of White Picket Fence and Key Move Properties, the more localized and properly family group socially distanced gathering of about 25 total participants was a rousing success, nonetheless.

‘Look, there are eggs over there too!’ this happy egg hunter alerts mom and sis. Royal Examiner Photos by Roger Bianchini

The measuring stick – the smiling children’s faces as they ran around gathering candy and surprise-filled turkey eggs dominating the Commons area landscape mid-afternoon this Thanksgiving Day.

We spoke with the “Turkeys” after their official launching of the Turkey Egg Hunt about the trials and tribulations of a pandemic and extended, not-extended walking mall-impacted Turkey Egg Hunt.

“Gobble-gobble-gobble, gobble-gobble-gobble,” Mr. Turkey began before we reminded him his interviewer was not bilingual in Turkeyese, at which point Mrs. Turkey took the helm in human-English speak.

Above, the ‘Turkeys’ in full costume; below, egg hunters spread out, perhaps wondering where to start.

“Considering the environment that we’re in, I think we had a good turnout – we have less than 25 people, so we’re not breaking any rules (regarding gubernatorial COVID-19 Phase 3 pandemic guidelines prohibiting public and business gathering of more than 25 people).

“We have a lot of family groups socially distanced from each other and I think people are going to respect that more than anything,” Mr. Turkey added, regaining his command of human-English speak. “I classify this as a success. This is the community coming out and celebrating a little memory, starting a new tradition, second year running – third is the make it or break it, right?” Mr. Turkey observed the old standard of catching on or not.

Looking a year into the future, hopefully with successful vaccines having been developed, and on the market putting an end to the worldwide 2019 Novel Coronavirus pandemic that is thus far attributed to taking over 266,000 American lives, and over 1.42-million worldwide, Mr. Turkey forecast a bigger and better 2021 Turkey Day Egg Hunt. – “So, next year all this (pandemic restrictions) will be gone and it’ll be much larger, much bigger, and as much fun.”

While a smaller group than hoped for in year two, as noted above, those present, children and parents alike, were notable for the big grins on their faces as children raced to claim their turkey egg candy and toy stash.

“Seeing the smiles on the family’s faces makes it a hundred percent worth it,” Mr. Turkey observed.

“Absolutely,” Mrs. Turkey, who oversaw much of the egg-laying, agreed.

Above, at least Mr. Turkey got a smile from mom – kids look more baffled; below, Mrs. Turkey does some egg-laying prior to the launch of the hunt.

Royal Examiner asked the Turkeys about the planning involved amidst a constantly shifting pandemic and downtown walking mall landscape.

“Well, I had a conversation with Santa and the Tooth Fairy and the Easter Bunny, and we hatched this plan last year on a whim – why not do it?” Mr. Turkey replied, as Mrs. Turkey noted, “Last Easter we went to Walmart and bought all their leftover Easter eggs, so we’d have eggs, and asked our customers to bring us some candy after Halloween, so we could stuff the turkey eggs, and here we are after about an hour and a half of putting them out.”

As Mrs. Turkey retreats for supplies at C&C Frozen Treats, Sue Laurence eyes her musical setup in front of her and husband Chris’s Key Move Properties/White Picket Fence complex.

Mr. Turkey estimated that from community donations this year, as many as three thousand eggs and the candy and toys with which to fill them had been gathered. “We had an egg stuffing party at the ice cream shop and winter is upon us,” despite the 68-degree temperatures this November 26th we pointed out – “Despite the 68-degree temperatures – you stuff eggs in your downtime … and you have a bunch of smiling kids faces in the end, and that’s what it’s about.”

Sue Laurence concurred that in the circumstance of 2020, success can’t be measured solely in numbers. “We’re having a great time. There may not be a lot of people here but the weather’s great.

Next year, hopefully, more people will feel comfortable about coming out. But everybody who is here has got a smile.”

And the Turkey Egg Hunt is underway …

So many eggs, so little time … Below, the Hucks, I mean Turkeys celebrate a job well done despite the trying environment of 2020.

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EDA in Focus

EDA announces pending sale of Baugh Drive warehouse to medical marijuana distributor



The EDA Board of Directors met in a Special Board meeting this morning. With a unanimous vote on a motion by Greg Harold, seconded by Jim Wolfe, the Board approved a resolution authorizing the Chair and Secretary to sign a Letter Of Intent (LOI) to sell the former Atlantic Skyline Building at 426 Baugh Drive for the full asking price of $5,750,000 to Parallel Virginia, LLC, a pharmaceutical processor of medical cannabis. The sale is contingent upon the conditional approval of the company’s application for a pharmaceutical processor permit in Health Service Area 1 by the Virginia Board of Pharmacy – a decision expected in March 2021. As authorized by law, the Virginia Board of Pharmacy may award conditional approval for only one pharmaceutical processor application in this health service area.

The Commonwealth of Virginia passed legislation approving the production and use of medical cannabis oil in 2018. The legislation established five Health Service Areas with one pharmaceutical processor per area. The Board of Pharmacy has already awarded permits in Areas 2-5. The Area 1 permit reopened for applicants in the fall of 2020.

Parallel Virginia, LLC, if awarded conditional approval, will begin establishing its manufacturing presence in the spring of 2021. This experienced, multi-state operator is already successfully operating in four states – Georgia, Massachusetts, Colorado, and Florida. In addition, the company is currently developing a recently awarded research-focused operation in Pennsylvania in partnership with the University of Pittsburgh.

Parallel has a strong research and development component in every operation and has already signed letters of intent for strategic research and workforce partnerships with several public and private Virginia institutions of higher education.

The company’s industry-leading experience and multi-state success will greatly benefit the Warren County and Front Royal area. In the first five years of operation, they project a capital investment of tens of millions of dollars and the creation of hundreds of jobs.

Virginia law requires doctors who want to write prescriptions for medical cannabis to register with the Board of Pharmacy. Patients prescribed medical cannabis are required to pay an annual fee in addition to the cost of the prescription. The law also limits the number of dispensing facilities within the Health Service Area to five. The company, if selected, will establish its pharmaceutical processor operation at this facility, and has future plans to identify separate, stand-alone dispensing facilities within other localities in HSA 1.

Aerial perspective of the 426 Baugh Dr. warehouse – photo, graphic courtesy of WCEDA

Finally, selling the building will save Warren County taxpayers approximately $25,000 per month, or $300,000 a year, in loan payments, utilities, and insurance costs. It was a priority of the Board to get this building back into the hands of the private sector and back online creating jobs and adding to the economic engine of our community. This prospect will create jobs, generate tax revenue, and develop licensed medicine for patients in need. Doug Parsons, EDA Executive Director noted, “We believe this company is a good fit for our community. They have been thorough, transparent, and accommodating in thinking through their potential presence in Virginia. We appreciate their interest in our community and their commitment to making a lasting, positive impact in our region.”

Also following the closed session, on a motion by Tom Patteson, seconded by Harold, the board unanimously approved a short-term storage lease with Interchange Group for 10,000 square feet of space at 426 Baugh Drive for $4,125 per month.

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Community Events

Rotary Club of Front Royal providing free Doc Smith food boxes and Coats for Kids



The Rotary Club of Front Royal is partnering with the Department of Social Services to provide free Doc Smith food boxes and Coats for Kids. The Doc Smith Food Basket program has existed in Warren County/Front Royal since 1916. The Rotary Club of Front Royal has sponsored the food box program since 2003.

The deadline for applications is Monday, November 30. Applications can be dropped off at the following places:

  • Department of Social Services – 465 W 15th St (they have a drop box for contactless delivery)
  • Warren County Community Center – 538 Villa Ave – Friday and Saturday, November 20 and 21
  • Drop box at First Baptist Church -14 W 1st Street (in doors facing 1st Avenue)
  • Call or email First Baptist Church – 540-635-2122 or

Food boxes and coats can be picked up on Saturday, December 19, from 10:00am – Noon, at First Baptist Church Fellowship Hall. Delivery is also available.

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Traditional Thanksgiving off the table for many



Many Americans are grappling with ways to make one of the nation’s most celebrated holidays safe amid the coronavirus pandemic.

Richmond resident Caroline Kaschak will feast at home to protect at-risk elders in her family.

“It is just going to be my husband and me,” Kaschak said. “We are going to order in fancy takeout instead.”

Colleges like Virginia Commonwealth University are offering COVID-19 exit testing to students before they return home for the holidays. Some Americans still have scheduled traditional Thanksgiving gatherings with their families.

“I plan on going to my grandparents’ house for Thanksgiving,” said VCU student Rickaya Sykes. “They live in the same town as me, and we are very close. If I am not at home, I am at their house spending time with them.”

The Centers for Disease Control recently issued guidance for gatherings over the Thanksgiving holiday. The safest way to celebrate Thanksgiving is at home with people who live in the same household, the CDC said. Gatherings with family and friends who live outside the home can increase the chances of getting or spreading COVID-19 or the flu.

The agency recommends that hosts limit the number of guests, disinfect surfaces and keep windows open to decrease coronavirus risk. For attendees, the guidance includes bringing and eating food from home with their own utensils and staying out of the kitchen.

COVID-19 cases and deaths have sharply risen in the past two weeks across the nation and in Virginia, according to the New York Times. Over the past week, there has been an average of 2,262 new cases per day in Virginia, an increase of 62% from the average two weeks earlier, according to the Times.

Gov. Ralph Northam announced a coronavirus mandate in Virginia to limit private gatherings and some public events to 25 people. The restrictions took effect on Nov. 15, less than two weeks before the Thanksgiving holiday.

The CDC urged Americans to consider alternative Thanksgiving Day activities such as virtual celebrations, eating meals outdoors, post-holiday shopping online and using a curbside pickup.

Virginia State Parks is encouraging families to gather at its 39 parks— which have remained open during the pandemic—over the Thanksgiving holiday. The “Opt Outside” promotion will be celebrated throughout the holiday weekend from Nov. 26 to Nov. 29. Visitors have a chance to win a $500 Virginia State Parks gift certificate if they submit up to five photos of their trip and enter it into the annual photo contest. The Virginia State Parks promotion started 10 years ago as “Green Friday” to motivate families to visit the park instead of post-Thanksgiving shopping on “Black Friday.”

“Since the promotion started, we have seen more people visiting parks over the holidays,” said Tim Shrader, the eastern region field operations manager for Virginia State Parks. “You have all this family coming in, you probably need to get outside and enjoy each other’s company outside for physical and mental health.”

AAA released its annual Thanksgiving travel forecast, which anticipated at least a 10% drop in travel. The agency said that is the largest one-year decrease since the Great Recession in 2008. In mid-October, AAA expected up to 50 million Americans to travel for the holiday. Now they say it could be lowered given the recent surge in COVID-19 cases and health notices.

The nation’s airports saw an uptick in travelers over the weekend, despite the CDC advisory to avoid traveling. The Transportation Security Administration reported almost 4 million travelers from Nov. 19 to Nov. 22, but the rate of travelers was still much lower than at the same time last year.

By India Jones
Capital News Service

Capital News Service is a program of Virginia Commonwealth University’s Robertson School of Media and Culture. Students in the program provide state government coverage for a variety of media outlets in Virginia.

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FRPD releases Chief’s full statement on social media investigation



The Front Royal Police Department was made aware on Wednesday, November 11, 2020, of concerning social media posts that had been made by an officer within our department. These comments do not represent the views of the Town of Front Royal or our Police Department. Our mission remains to safeguard the lives of ALL members of our community. We take this behavior very seriously. Upon receipt of the complaint, the officer was immediately placed on administrative leave pursuant to an internal investigation.

The Internal Affairs Division conducted a thorough investigation, the results of which were also vetted externally by a third party. It was determined in the investigation that the Front Royal Police Department’s General Order 27.01.04; Public Information – Internet / Social Media had been violated by this employee. Specific violations include: ‘D.3 – Department Sanctioned Use’, and section ‘E. – Personal Use/Off-Duty Conduct’. In light of the totality of circumstances, appropriate punitive and corrective disciplinary actions have taken place which includes extensive training in cultural diversity, anti-biased policing, and the role of social media in public safety.

The officer is a 15-year veteran of the Front Royal Police Department. All 15 years of performance evaluations show above average work performance. In the past three years alone, this officer has responded to over 3,000 calls for service in our community. This officer has never had any disciplinary actions, no citizen complaints, and no excessive use of force incidents in the course of his career.

Again, we take this very seriously and do not condone the statements made by this officer. We are instituting social media training for the entire department and will be conducting antibias policing training in addition to the mandated yearly cultural diversity requirements of the Virginia Department of Criminal Justice Services.

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