Learn and practice the art of botanical drawing in pencil with local artist and instructor Elena Maza.
This four session course will focus on learning basic drawing skills as applied to botanicals: basic line drawings of leaves, flowers, the different types, shapes, composition and layout, etc. from live plant materials. Students will take their drawings of sprigs of flowers and/or leaves and learn how to use shading techniques to create the illusion of three dimensions and depth.
Wednesdays: 1:30pm – 4:00pm, Sept 4th – 25th. Classes will be held in our upstairs studio.
Materials are not included. Recommended supplies are listed on our website.
Class policies: We understand that scheduling conflicts do happen. You may cancel your class for a full refund up to 48 hours before the first class, by phone or in person. No refunds will be issued after this time.
In case of inclement weather, we will reschedule the class. Please check our Facebook page for updates on class cancellations due to weather.
Wildcat golfers suffer close loss to Hawks
The WCHS Golf team had a match Wednesday, September 18, at Shenandoah Valley Golf Course in Front Royal. The team lost a hard fought match against Skyline High School 191 – 194. WCHS Coach, Matt Wadas, stated that “although they lost the match, the team had fun and played well. Jackson Pond posted a personal best of 47.”
WCHS junior Michael Kelly was top finisher for the Wildcats, placing second in the match, shooting a 45. Jackson Pond placed third overall in the match. First year Wildcat Will Waller shot a 50, placing third for Wildcats.
The Wildcats’ next match will be the District Conference Match on Monday, September 23 at Bryce Resort Golf Course at Basye, VA.
A history of roads in Virginia: Strengthening the organization
Other study commission recommendations led in 1964 to steps aimed at equipping the Department of Highways to better meet the growing challenge. The General Assembly established the urban street system as a separate entity for the distribution of highway funds and directed that it receive a minimum of 14 percent of all revenue exclusive of federal interstate funds.
The urban system was to include extensions of the state’s primary routes within cities and towns and other local streets of adequate width and surface. Eighty-five percent of the cost of building improvements on this system was to be paid for with state highway funds or with a combination of state and federal funds, with the local governments providing the remaining 15 percent. In addition, millions of dollars in state road-user revenue were to be returned to the cities and towns each year for maintenance of local streets.
As another result of the study commission, the Department of Highways was reorganized to reduce the number of individuals reporting directly to the commissioner, giving him more hours a day to concentrate on broad policy and administrative issues.
The new organizational structure provided for the commissioner to carry out his assignment largely through the delegation of responsibility to two persons — a deputy commissioner-chief engineer and a director of administration. The division organization also was to be changed somewhat to more effectively meet the public’s highway needs. Its landscape division, organized in 1930 to deal mainly with erosion control, beautification, and outdoor advertising control, was expanded into an environmental quality division to coordinate increasing ecological considerations. A metropolitan transportation planning division was established to prepare long-range, comprehensive plans for more than 45 cities and towns and to aid in development of urban mass transit improvements. A data processing division was formed to take maximum advantage of the remarkable time savings permitted through computers. A management services division became responsible for ensuring implementation of internal policies and procedures.
Through the 1960s and into the ‘70s, the emphasis of the organization continued largely on the interstate and arterial programs, and on upgrading older routes by elimination of obsolete bridges, poor alignment, and curves. The factor of “need” was added to others, such as population, land area, miles of road, and vehicular miles of travel, which long had been considered in apportioning funds.
Improvements also continued on the secondary road system. By 1972, four decades after the system was established, 27,000 secondary roads were hard-surfaced, compared to 2,000 miles at the outset. Only 400 miles remained unsurfaced, and most of them served fewer than a dozen vehicles daily. The public’s investment in Virginia’s highways was valued at more than $5 billion. With nearly 12,000 employees, the Department of Highways was the largest agency in state government and was among the half-dozen largest employers in the commonwealth.
A strong corps of private contractors had developed, and major construction projects were built under contracts awarded on a low-bid basis. Prospective bidders on this work were required to be “pre-qualified” on the basis of their experience, manpower, equipment, and financial resources, to ensure satisfactory completion of contracts.
Questions about the importance of road and bridge maintenance had vanished long before, and millions of dollars were spent annually to protect the public’s investment and to keep the facilities in safe condition.
Some 5,000 department employees were assigned to maintenance operations — snow and ice control, roadside mowing, as well as resurfacing, clearing side ditches, collecting litter, and a multitude of other jobs. The road system they maintained had become the nation’s third-largest, covering about 51,000 miles. But for maintenance personnel, the demands sometimes were far from routine. The night of Aug. 19, 1969, was an example.
It was then that rains from Hurricane Camille touched off flooding that swept across large portions of western and central Virginia, striking while people slept. The U.S. Weather Bureau said later that 27 inches of rain had fallen in about eight hours near the little community of Massies Mill in Nelson County. Great torrents of water streamed down the mountainsides, uprooting trees that became battering rams against the houses below. Ordinarily tranquil rivers and creeks poured out of their banks and rushed ahead with massive destruction. Some said it was the worst storm in America’s history, and it struck hard at much of the nation’s East Coast. In Virginia 114 persons were killed, 37 others were missing, and more than 100 were injured.
Two hundred miles of the state’s roads were destroyed, and nearly 100 bridges were wrecked. The cost of repairing the facilities alone would exceed $20 million. Less than three years later, on the night of June 19, 1972, rain from a new hurricane — one called Agnes and considered a tropical storm by the time it reached Virginia — caused similar destruction over a wider area from the western regions to the coast.
At least 13 people died; dozens were injured. The property damage climbed above that of Camille, and estimates placed the toll at $160.7 million. Six hundred miles of roads were damaged; 104 bridges were left useless — washed away, heavily damaged, or without passable approaches.
Road maintenance crews hadn’t seen problems of these proportions before. Yet, they worked around the clock, and traffic was moving again within hours in many of the flood-wrecked areas and within a few days in most other places. The urgency was underscored because frequently other emergency and rescue operations could not proceed until roads were reopened and river and creek crossings were restored.
Produced by the
Virginia Department of Transportation
Office of Public Affairs
1401 E. Broad Street
Richmond, VA 23219
Children’s activities at Samuels Public Library for the month of October
These are the events taking place in the Youth Services Department of Samuels Public Library during the month of October. Thank you for sharing this information. More information about Samuels Library and the programs and services available can be found at www.samuelslibrary.net or by calling (540) 635-3153.
Tuesday, October 1
- 11:00 Time for Baby. What do books, scarves, puppets, music and babies have in common? They are all part of Time for Baby. Join us as we use all of our senses to explore the world around us. Once Upon a Time will be the theme this month. Meet with your baby up to two years of age. Siblings welcome.
- 4:30 Science Scouts and More. Kids will explore popular books and book series through science, games, food, and more! Based on the Goosebumps series of books, this week we will get into slime and chemical reactions. For ages 6-11. Registration begins September 1.
Wednesday, October 2 and Thursday, October 3
- 10:15 Toddler Story time.
- 11:00 Preschool Story time.
They are tall, and their leaves are changing colors… Trees! Come in for some wonderful stories, songs, and a craft! Siblings welcome.
Saturday, October 5
- 10:00 Books and Barks. Come to our extremely popular monthly program that gives developing readers the chance to read and relax with a trained therapy dog. For beginning readers and up. Choose a time slot at registration, which begins September 5.
- 2:00 Discuss This Book. Are you inspired by good books, articles, movies, and art? Do you write, draw, or enjoy playing music? If so, join us as we discuss books and share our creations. This is a group for those who wish to talk seriously about a variety of topics. This month, we will be discussing our favorite dystopian books. Refreshments will be provided. For ages 12 and up. Registration begins September 5.
Tuesday, October 8
- 4:30. Science Scouts and More. Kids will explore popular books and book series through science, games, food, and more! Based on the Goosebumps series of books, this week we will learn about insects. Hungry? We’ll have some edible insects for you to try! For ages 6-11. Registration begins September 8.
Wednesday, October 9 and Thursday, October 10
- 10:15 Toddler Story time.
- 11:00 Preschool Story time.
Our stories this week will be about our pink farm friends, pigs! Come in for fun stories, songs, and a craft! During Thursday’s Preschool Story Time, author Mary Ann Olsen will highlight her picture book Little Cousins Birthdays. Copies of the book will be available for purchase and signing. Siblings welcome.
Saturday, October 12
- 11:00 Saturday Morning Movie: Aladdin. It’s a whole new world! Enjoy the new, live-action version of Aladdin at the library, complete with popcorn! For ages 5 and up. Registration begins September 19.
- 2:00 World of Lego. Children and teens, ages 5 and up, are invited to explore all the amazing things you can do with Legos. Registration begins September 12.
Tuesday, October 15
- 4:30 Science Scouts and More. Kids will explore popular books and book series through science, games, food, and more! As we consider the Goosebumps series of books, children will have the opportunity to make their own creatures, just like Frankenstein! ! For ages 6-11. Registration begins September 15.
Wednesday, October 16 and Thursday, October 17
- 10:15 Toddler Story time.
- 11:00 Preschool Story time.
Meet Mr. Policeman will be the theme of our stories and special visitors this week! Siblings welcome.
Saturday, October 19
- 2:00 Dungeons & Dragons (Group A.) Hail and well met, Adventurers! A new program is taking place for teens 13+. Dungeons and Dragons is an interactive, imaginative game that stimulates the mind with critical thinking, problem solving, and quick wits. New to the game? No problem. Our Game Master is prepared to help all learn the game and provide an enjoyable experience for all. Space is limited, so join up while there’s still room on the list!
Saturday, October 26
- 11:00 Aspiring Artists. Are you aged 7 and up? Do you enjoy art? If so, please join us for our children’s art class. Let’s paint together! We’ll make an autumn scene using acrylic paints. Registration begins September 26.
- 2:00 Dungeons & Dragons (Group B.) Hail and well met, Adventurers! A new program is taking place for teens 13+. Dungeons and Dragons is an interactive, imaginative game that stimulates the mind with critical thinking, problem solving, and quick wits. New to the game? No problem. Our Game Master is prepared to help all learn the game and provide an enjoyable experience for all. Space is limited, so join up while there’s still room on the list!
Tuesday, October 29
4:30 Science Scouts and More. Kids will explore popular books and book series through science, games, food, and more! As we consider the Goosebumps series of books, children will have the opportunity to learn about how pumpkins grow, and do some pumpkin carving and decorating! For ages 6-11. Registration begins September 29.
Wednesday, October 30 and Thursday, October 31
- 10:15 Toddler Story time.
- 11:00 Preschool Story time.
It’s Pumpkin time! Come in for stories, songs, and a craft about those big, orange pumpkins that we love.
FRPD project ‘double draw’ draws EDA Finance Committee’s attention
The so-called January double draw on the United Bank account the Economic Development Authority is using to pay for work or debt service on the Front Royal Police Station project was a topic of conversation at Friday morning’s EDA Finance Committee meeting. The double draw involves a second deposit from the EDA’s Construction Account into its checking account from which payments are made.
It came to light in recent weeks that a January 30 transfer of $1.1 million to the EDA checking account was not necessary because of a January 8 transfer of $2.8 million from which funds were still available.
Finance Committee Chairman and EDA Treasurer Tom Patteson raised the issue, stating, “Nothing was lost, stolen or misdirected.” He added that the Town, for whom the EDA has been overseeing project payments, had not been charged interest for the period of time the second checking account deposit had been received until the requisition for project payments utilizing the second deposit.
Retired Warren County Finance Director Carolyn Stimmel, who has been helping with the audit and bookkeeping review of EDA finances in the wake of the financial fraud investigation, observed that the second draw was made during a time of transition for the EDA. That transition included the hiring of an interim executive director for resigned Executive Director Jennifer McDonald.
Stimmel noted that one thus far unsolved mystery of the second January draw on the construction account was that no draw request signed by an authorized EDA official has been discovered.
“The process was flawed but the money was used for the correct purpose,” Committee member Jorie Martin noted, adding, “There was no malfeasance,” in that once deposited into the payment checking account the money was eventually used for payments on the FRPD headquarters project.
“We do want an explanation of how this happened,” current EDA Executive Director Doug Parsons told the committee and media present.
The January 30 deposit carried a draw notice addressed to then EDA and County Attorney Dan Whitten stating the deposit was being made “upon your request”. But prior to his weekend departure for the county attorney’s job in Prince George County, Virginia, Whitten said he hadn’t made the request and noted he didn’t have the authority to make it. He also has indicated in the past that the January 8 draw was set in motion by former EDA Executive Director McDonald prior to her December 20 resignation.
EDA Treasurer Patteson and others with the authority to request the draw at the time have also denied having requested the second January draw. Bank officials have not yet publicly commented or responded to requests for information about where the impetus for the January 30 draw came from.
So while the process remains a mystery under investigation, according to the EDA the end result seems to be mysteriously-transferred money spent on what it was supposed to be spent on, without undue expense to the Town of Front Royal.
The Finance Committee also discussed negotiations and the bid process on several outstanding projects. Those include repairs on the residential apartment building at 514 East Main Street attached to the old Stokes Mart building at 506 East Main; roof repairs at 1325 Progress Drive in the EDA’s Happy Creek Technology Park; and a contract negotiation on the Fairgrounds Road property. Prior to his early departure from the 11 a.m. committee meeting, Greg Harold told the committee he had another meeting with the Afton Inn developers on a mutually agreeable path forward.
Harold has previously told the EDA board that the developer is anxious to be allowed to resurrect the project halted upon filing of the EDA civil litigation in March due to the alleged use of the project to move some misdirected EDA assets. However the development group 2 East Main Street LLC was not cited as involved in that alleged misdirection of EDA assets. The EDA suit contends that former EDA Executive Director Jennifer McDonald utilized project funds for unauthorized transfers for personal use.
The EDA hopes to have several bids in place on repairs to the 514 East Main Street apartments within the week. It has given the three displaced tenants notice the EDA will stop covering their living expenses in a nearby motel as of September 30. Parsons later noted the tenants will be allowed to apply their rent payments to their accommodations until they are resituated in the repaired apartments.
Conversation early in the meeting indicated that Interim County Attorney Jason Ham of Litten & Sipe LLP had declined to also serve as EDA attorney. Parsons later explained that Ham indicated potential conflicts of interest between the County and EDA Attorney roles due to the swirling civil litigation had made him uncomfortable serving in both positions.
The EDA will utilize the services of counsel from Sands-Anderson, the Richmond-based company handling the EDA’s civil suit filed March 26. Bids on legal services long term are expected to be in by Monday. The EDA is exploring the use of independent counsel from the County’s in the wake of the prevalence of potential conflicts of interest that became increasingly apparent as the financial investigation and consequent litigation evolved in recent months.
See the entire open meeting of the EDA Finance Committee in this Royal Examiner video:
Open House: Saturday, September 21-22
You MUST SEE this upgraded Colonial in desirable Red Bud Run before it’s sold! Backing to green-space, this exquisite home offers so much. Beautiful hardwood flooring on main level. Oversized family room with gas fireplace open to kitchen. Main level is ideal for entertaining! Lovely screened porch off kitchen plus a separate poured concrete patio overlooking fenced backyard! 6 bedrooms, 3.5 baths, gorgeous granite counters in kitchen and bathrooms. Main level office and formal living room. Laundry hook ups on main and lower level.
All of this in a desirable east side location! Call today!
Governor Northam announces expansion of cloud computing degree programs with Amazon Web Services
WOODBRIDGE—Governor Ralph Northam announced a new collaboration between Amazon Web Services (AWS) and select K-12 school divisions, the Virginia Community College System (VCCS), and leading four-year universities. This collaboration will create opportunities and build pathways to high-skilled and high-wage cloud computing careers for students in all regions of the Commonwealth.
As part of the collaboration, participating academic institutions will use AWS Educate, an initiative to support cloud technology learning for students and faculty. AWS Educate will allow schools to incorporate cloud skills into high school STEM curriculum as well as associate and bachelor degree programs. This collaboration will also help employers throughout Virginia who have a growing need for workers with cloud computing skills.
“The field of cloud computing is growing and dynamic, and we know that for our Commonwealth to reach new heights and remain a national leader in tech talent, we must build seamless pathways from classrooms to careers at all education levels,” said Governor Northam. “This initiative represents exactly the kind of cooperation we need to ensure that Virginians have access to the skills they need for 21st-century jobs, while also helping employers find Virginia workers with the right training to fill those jobs.”
“The growing demand for these skills is clear,” said Chief Workforce Development Advisor Megan Healy. “Since September 2016, job postings requiring these skills in Virginia have increased from approximately 5,000 per month to 20,000 per month.”
Northern Virginia Community College and George Mason University are two of the first higher education institutions in the country to offer cloud computing degrees. As a result of this new collaboration, these successful programs will be replicated at other community colleges and four-year institutions, and high school students will have the opportunity to receive college credit in cloud computing courses through dual enrollment and early college models.
“This new degree program marks an exciting first step in a much broader plan to bring cloud computing education throughout the state, as the degree seeks to bridge into high schools and four-year institutions,” said Secretary of Education Atif Qarni.
“The need for these skills extend well beyond Amazon as a company, or even what we consider the technology industry. Practically every field is growing more reliant on this technology and need people who can make it work,” said VCCS Chancellor Glenn DuBois. “This collaboration means our students will be at the forefront of a degree program that will help prepare them for high-demand 21st-century jobs.”
“By embedding the AWS Educate program to create a statewide cloud degree program, Virginia is providing students with an on-ramp to innovation and careers in the cloud,” said Teresa Carlson, Vice President, Worldwide Public Sector, Amazon Web Services, Inc. “We applaud Governor Northam and Virginia’s educational leaders for providing this workforce development opportunity for students in all corners of the Commonwealth, from K-12 to community colleges to four-year institutions and on into the workforce.”
The following institutions will participate in this initiative and have committed to implement the cloud computing degree program in Virginia.
• Fairfax County Public Schools
• Loudon County Public Schools
• Alexandria City Public Schools
• Arlington Public Schools
• Northern Virginia Community College
• J. Sargeant Reynolds Community College
• John Tyler Community College
• Thomas Nelson Community College
• Blue Ridge Community College
• Patrick Henry Community College
• Dabney S. Lancaster Community College
• Tidewater Community College
• New River Community College
• Lord Fairfax Community College
• George Mason University
• Virginia Polytechnic Institute and State University
• Virginia Commonwealth University
• Old Dominion University
• Hampton University
• Virginia State University