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Botanicals in Watercolor I

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When:
August 13, 2019 @ 1:30 pm – 4:00 pm
2019-08-13T13:30:00-04:00
2019-08-13T16:00:00-04:00
Where:
Art in the Valley
205-A East Main St | Front Royal
VA 22630
Cost:
$140
Contact:
Kelli Hart
540-252-2260

This four week course with the instructor, Elena Maza, will deal with the basic three-primary color palette, different pigments and how they interact, how to mix all colors from three primary colors, how to apply washes, use brushstrokes and lifting to achieve the effects of light and shadow. Students will practice applying washes on paper, start mixing colors and paint several color wheels to explore color. Students will work on simple line drawings of a sprig of leaves or flowers they have drawn, transfer these onto watercolor paper and practice their techniques.

Recommended materials (not included in class fee) are listed on our website.

Tuesday afternoons, 1:30-4:00pm, Aug. 6 – Aug. 27. Classes will be held in our upstairs studio at 205 E. Main St., Front Royal, Virginia.


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.

Community Events

‘Yappy Hour’ returns to Main Street this Friday, July 10

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When:
August 13, 2019 @ 1:30 pm – 4:00 pm
2019-08-13T13:30:00-04:00
2019-08-13T16:00:00-04:00
Where:
Art in the Valley
205-A East Main St | Front Royal
VA 22630
Cost:
$140
Contact:
Kelli Hart
540-252-2260

Special ‘Yappy Hour’ guest LaBella

“Yappy Hour” — a fun fundraiser for the Julia Wagner Animal Shelter – returns to downtown Front Royal’s East Main Street courtesy ViNoVa Tapas Bar and Restaurant Friday, July 10, after an absence since last March due to the COVID-19 Coronavirus pandemic emergency response closings.

Owners and operators Rachel Failmezger and Chris Kenworthy will continue to host “Yappy Hour” which features lower cost food and drink prices, a generous cut from sales during the 6-8 p.m. event, and proceeds from a traditional 50/50 raffle all donated to the Humane Society of Warren County (HSWC) for its Wagner Shelter operations.

In celebration of her release from her shelter kennel just 24 hours earlier, La Bella will be the “belle of the ball” as the rescue dog takes a bow with her adopters, Michael and Sherry Williams, at the opening of this weekly event.

Since meal and bar service has been moved outdoors into the “closed to car traffic” East Main Street, attendees are encouraged to bring their (well behaved!) dogs to join La Bella and my own rescue husky, La Diva, to the soiree. All spacing, masking and other suggested state and local requirements will be observed.

Front Royal’s original “Yappy Hour” was launched at the same restaurant site under a different name (Vino e Formaggio) by myself and Christian Failmezger several years ago, and over a two-year span raised some $12,000 for the animal shelter. It was re-launched last September with similar financial success during its first six months.


(Malcolm Barr Sr., our contributing writer, is a past president of HSWC)

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State News

2020 Independence Day holiday traffic crashes claim nine lives

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When:
August 13, 2019 @ 1:30 pm – 4:00 pm
2019-08-13T13:30:00-04:00
2019-08-13T16:00:00-04:00
Where:
Art in the Valley
205-A East Main St | Front Royal
VA 22630
Cost:
$140
Contact:
Kelli Hart
540-252-2260

Unfortunately, thousands of drunk, speeding and reckless drivers kept Virginia State Police busy and put countless lives at risk during the 2020 July 4th holiday weekend across the Commonwealth. Preliminary reports indicate nine individuals, to include a 4-year-old child, died during the holiday statistical counting period that began at 12:01 a.m. July 2, 2020 and concluded at midnight July 5, 2020. During the 2019 July 4 holiday counting period, there were seven traffic deaths on Virginia highways.

The nine fatal crashes occurred in the counties of Albemarle, Arlington, Augusta, Bedford, Carroll, James City, Lunenburg, Prince Edward and Russell counties. The Augusta County, Arlington County and Russell County crashes involved motorcycles. The Prince Edward County crash claimed the life of a 4-year-old Charlotte County male.

“Even though state police did its part to enhance its response times and traffic safety enforcement efforts, too many motorists still put their lives and others at risk during the holiday weekend by failing to drive smart, safe or sober,” said Colonel Gary T. Settle, Virginia State Police Superintendent. “As we look towards the remainder of the summer travel season, I can’t stress enough the need for every driver and passenger, motorcyclist and bicyclist, pedestrian and commercial vehicle driver to make travel safety a priority. Sharing the road responsibly, complying with speed limits, buckling up and never driving impaired or distracted are what it takes to reduce crash-related injuries and deaths on Virginia’s highways.”

During the Operation Crash Awareness Reduction Effort’s (C.A.R.E.) four-day statistical counting period, Virginia troopers arrested 44 drunk drivers. In addition, state troopers cited 1,537 speeders and 732 reckless drivers, and issued 126 citations to individuals for failing to obey the law and buckle up. During the holiday statistical counting period, Virginia State Police responded to a total 444 traffic crashes statewide and assisted 1,153 disabled/stranded motorists. Operation C.A.R.E. is a state-sponsored, national program intended to reduce crashes, fatalities and injuries due to impaired driving, speed and failing to wear a seat belt.

Funds generated from summonses issued by Virginia State Police go directly to court fees and the state’s Literary Fund, which benefits public school construction, technology funding and teacher retirement.

For more information on traffic safety and how to keep Virginia “Moving Toward Zero Roadway Deaths,” go to www.tzdva.org.

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Business

The key to fraud — printed right on your checks

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When:
August 13, 2019 @ 1:30 pm – 4:00 pm
2019-08-13T13:30:00-04:00
2019-08-13T16:00:00-04:00
Where:
Art in the Valley
205-A East Main St | Front Royal
VA 22630
Cost:
$140
Contact:
Kelli Hart
540-252-2260

In a business checking account, a small charge of $10 to $20 might not generate too much concern or suspicion.

But, beware, small amounts coming out of your checking account can be a fraud, and all the criminal needs to know are printed right on your check.

Automated Clearing House (ACH) fraud is a common way to steal. The criminal only needs your account number and the bank routing number. It is like check fraud only much easier since the funds come right out of your bank account without the need for paper.

Be aware that any time you type in your checking account and routing number online you are offering a bad actor all he or she needs to steal from you, either in small amounts over time, or by gutting your account entirely.

Criminals get your checking account information through phony websites, phishing schemes, spoofed emails from entities such as the IRS, and even work at home schemes.

Or, if you send them a check. That’s all it takes.

Such fraudulent ACH transactions can be labeled many things, including “Bank Card draft” or “Bank payment” and seem legitimate at a glance.

Consumers have 60 days to alert their banks and recover funds, but businesses may only have one day to do the same. The key is daily monitoring of the account, reviewing all the credits and debits to detect fraud immediately.

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Local Government

Doug Stanley reflects on 25-years in Warren County government

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When:
August 13, 2019 @ 1:30 pm – 4:00 pm
2019-08-13T13:30:00-04:00
2019-08-13T16:00:00-04:00
Where:
Art in the Valley
205-A East Main St | Front Royal
VA 22630
Cost:
$140
Contact:
Kelli Hart
540-252-2260

In a statement emailed to the media at 4:30 p.m. Wednesday afternoon, Stanley reflected on his time and career in Warren County.

“I have spent the past 25 years or half of my life serving the Front Royal-Warren County community, the last 20 as County Administrator. During that time, I have worked at the pleasure of the Warren County Board of Supervisors and appreciated the Board’s confidence, trust, and support over the years …

“I have been fortunate and blessed to work with an outstanding and professional staff of talented individuals who work hard to improve the quality of life of our citizens on a daily basis.

Above, the county supervisors and their administrator at distance as the meeting began. Below, Stanley acknowledged the board members following their action regarding his departure at the end of the month.

“Without a doubt, the past year has been the most difficult and challenging in my career. That said I believe we have made strides in bringing those responsible for the EDA embezzlement to justice and to recover what has been stolen as well as supporting the current EDA Board and staff to clean up the mess.

“To the community, I sincerely appreciate the opportunity to serve you over the past 25-plus years. Warren County has been able to strike a balance between economic growth and protecting the rural character, scenic vistas, and special places that we as a community treasure. I know in my heart that I leave Warren County a better community, a stronger more resilient community that is poised to continue to flourish in the coming years,” he concluded.

During that lengthy professional tenure here Stanley noted the challenges faced by the community regarding economic redevelopment after the closing of what was for decades beginning with World War II, one of, if not the county’s largest private-sector employer.

The north corridor commercial development overseen by County and EDA helped community bounce back from 1989 closure of the largest private-sector employer, Avtex.

“Over this period I have had the fortune and honor to be part of significant improvements to this community in replacing the lost jobs and tax base of the former Avtex facility with over $500 million in industrial development and the creation of over 2,000 jobs in the Route 340/522 corridor. This does not include the $1 billion invested by Dominion in the new power plant. The County has been able to attract significant retail development to the corridor which provides our residents with shopping and dining opportunities while generating revenue to reduce the County’s reliance on real estate taxes.”

And he noted the variety of capital improvement projects taken on, of particular note with the county’s public school system.

“We have also made tremendous strides in addressing the capital facility needs of our community thanks to the vision and support of the various members of the Board of Supervisors through the construction of numerous school, community, parks and recreation, and public safety facilities.

“I am proud that we have been able to make all of these improvements and additions to our community while still maintaining one of the lowest real estate tax rates in the region.”

EDA Board Chair Ed Daley will replace Doug Stanley on interim basis at month’s end

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Local Government

EDA Board Chair Ed Daley will replace Doug Stanley on interim basis at month’s end

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When:
August 13, 2019 @ 1:30 pm – 4:00 pm
2019-08-13T13:30:00-04:00
2019-08-13T16:00:00-04:00
Where:
Art in the Valley
205-A East Main St | Front Royal
VA 22630
Cost:
$140
Contact:
Kelli Hart
540-252-2260

Following a 2-1/2 hour closed session convened three minutes after opening Wednesday morning’s Special Meeting, the Warren County Board of Supervisors unanimously approved a “Separation Agreement” with County Administrator Doug Stanley and the appointment of current Economic Development Authority Board of Directors Chairman Ed Daley as interim county administrator effective August 3rd.

Daley, now retired, has 35 years’ experience in the municipal/city management field, including in Winchester; Dodge City, Kansas; Fairmont, West Virginia; Hopewell and Emporia, Virginia. He will be paid at a $70 per hour rate. Daley confirmed that he will resign his EDA board position at the end of the month with the hope of returning to it upon the end of his tenure as interim county administrator.

Following adjournment of the special meeting North River Supervisor Delores Oates, who made the motion on the Separation Agreement, explained that Stanley’s final day on the job he has held since April 1, 2000, will be July 31, 2020.

Doug Stanley, right, greets Ed Daley and leads him to the closed session discussion of the shakeup in county administration. Royal Examiner Photos/Roger Bianchini – Royal Examiner Video/Mark Williams

Board Chairman Walt Mabe said that a press release on the departure of the only county administrator Warren County has had this century would be forthcoming, along with a copy of the “Separation Agreement” about an hour-and-a-half following the 1:36 p.m. adjournment of the July 8 special meeting. The board was in open session for a total of six minutes, three on each side of the 150-minute closed session.

In the County press release Mabe states, “We appreciate Mr. Stanley’s service to the Warren County community over the past 25 years. He has many wonderful accomplishments that have helped make Warren County a great place to live, work, and visit. We wish him the best as he continues with the next step in his career.”

Over the past year and a half Stanley has been a target of criticism on social media and by a few citizens at county board meetings as a symbol of the “business as usual” governmental scenario some hold as a causal factor in the EDA financial scandal. Whether such criticism is factually based or largely opinion rooted in the length of Stanley’s tenure with the county government or interpersonal issues remains to be seen.

As the 11 a.m. meeting time approached at the Warren County Government Center, 14 county staffers from seven county departments with no business on the one-topic meeting agenda filled a number of seats in the back rows of the public seating area. One, past and Interim Social Services Director (as of July 9) Beth Reavis held an “I Support Doug Stanley” sign.

Retired and soon-to-be Interim County Social Services Director Beth Reavis holds sign indicating staff support of the departing county administrator.

Perhaps that county staff presence led Board Chairman Mabe to open the meeting with a notice that any “outbursts or cheers or tears” would not be tolerated and that he would have the room cleared by the two Sheriff’s Office deputies present if such behavior occurred. As the motion was made to approve Stanley’s “separation” from County employment over 2-1/2 hours later those staffers all remained, observing silently.

Resigned or shown the door?

The press release from County Human Resources Director Jodi Saffelle issued at 2:53 p.m. is titled “Doug Stanley Has Resigned as County Administrator”

The press release begins stating, “Warren County Board of Supervisors Chairman Walt Mabe announced today that Douglas P. Stanley has tendered his resignation effective July 31, 2020. Mr. Stanley has been employed with the County since December 19, 1994, and has served as the County Administrator since April 1, 2000.”

However, in the Separation Agreement added to the release, it is noted in Points 1 and 2 that:

1 – Mr. Stanley, at the request of the Warren County Board of Supervisors, agrees to resign as County Administrator effective July 31, 2020.

2 – The County Agrees that Mr. Stanley’s resignation shall be considered an involuntary separation as that term is defined in Section 51.1-155.2 of the Code of Virginia.

That Virginia Code Section states that, “Such member may retire without the reduction in retirement allowance required by subdivisions A 2 and A 3 of § 51.1-155.2 upon attaining age 50”.

During the lengthy closed session, Stanley informed the media that his 51st birthday was the previous day, July 7, 2020. – Well happy birthday a day late, Doug, looks like you won’t lose any accumulated retirement from this “involuntary separation” resignation.

Stanley began his employment with the County as Zoning Administrator in December 1994. He became both planning director and county administrator on April 1, 1996, and 2000, respectively; serving in the dual role of county administrator/planning director until June 30, 2008, when Taryn Logan was named planning director.

Above, Stanley kills time as the 2-1/2 hour closed session discussion of his ‘Separation Agreement’ from his quarter-century place of employment progresses. Below, flanked by Planning Director Taryn Logan, Stanley chats with county staff present at Wednesday’s meeting.

Logan was one of the 14 employees, including several other department heads, present to hear Wednesday’s announcement without the need of a law enforcement escort out of the building. Other department heads spotted, masked and unmasked, were Fire Chief Richard Mabie, Parks & Recreation Director Dan Lenz, Building Code Official David Beahm, and Reavis on an interim basis at DSS, along with other staff including Deputy Emergency Management Director Rick Farrall, Joe Petty, Mike Berry, semi-retired Finance Director Carolyn Stimmel, among others, including Administrative Assistant Shelley Hayes filling in as deputy board clerk.

See events unfold in this Royal Examiner video:

Doug Stanley reflects on 25-years in Warren County government

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Opinion

Thoughts on the debate that black lives matter

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When:
August 13, 2019 @ 1:30 pm – 4:00 pm
2019-08-13T13:30:00-04:00
2019-08-13T16:00:00-04:00
Where:
Art in the Valley
205-A East Main St | Front Royal
VA 22630
Cost:
$140
Contact:
Kelli Hart
540-252-2260

There is no legitimate debate that black lives matter. Without capitalization, those words capture an issue of tantamount importance in today’s America.

But there is extreme cause to be concerned over Black Lives Matter (capitalized).  If ever there was a wolf masquerading in sheep’s clothing, this is it.  This is no Aesop’s fable.  It is a treacherous strategy.  If unchecked, Black Lives Matter will destroy the very people it feigns to help – black lives.  And with them, the nation itself.

American black citizens have for decades been victimized by the very Democrat party they thought to be their shepherd.  And now they are being victimized by Black Lives Matter.  The ruse is racism.  The reality has everything to do with destruction of America and little to do with racism.

For those who doubt that our nation’s black citizens have been victimized by the Democrat party, you need only review a bit of recent history.  Democrats collect votes on promises.  Once elected they fail to deliver. Between 1931 and 2016 the Democrat party held the majority in both houses of Congress for 62 years.  Yet, year after year, city after city, the record is the same.  Failure at education.  Failure at crime control.  City after city mired in debt.

So, if Black Lives Matter were truly about racism, about improving the lives of black citizens, they would direct their ire at the Democrat Party.

But BLM is not what it wants us to believe it is.  Jeff Minick (Intellectual Takeout, June 22, 2020) peels back layers of deception.   He writes, “The reality is that BLM is after power rather than justice, suppression rather than liberation, and class and racial warfare rather than peace.”

Minick, and fellow author Mike Scruggs (The Tribune Papers, September 28, 2016) lay bare the truth behind Black Lives Matter.

The violence and destruction we’ve seen in the wake of the George Floyd killing uses smoke and chaos to conceal BLM’s true objectives.  Make no mistake.  There is no excuse for police brutality.  Our nation must face and address its law enforcement problems.  Yet destruction of law enforcement agencies in an attempt to rectify abuse is nothing short of insane.  We’ve already seen black citizens suffer still more from lack of law enforcement owing to diminished police presence.  Were these citizens in any way protected or aided by Black Lives Matter leadership?

The answer to that rhetorical question is “No.”  And that is why we must return to revealing the reality of the BLM organization.

Here, along with my own reports, is some of what Minick and Scruggs have revealed, and what BLM has been concealing.

Black Lives Matter Global Network co-founder Patrisse Cullors is a trained organizer. “We are trained Marxists. We are super-versed on, sort of, ideological theories,” she said, adding that the group’s founders sought to “build a movement that could be utilized by many, many black folk.”

Marxist?  This fits well with the Democratic Party which embraces concepts such as ending capitalism, putting limits on speech and religious practices, and fundamentally transforming American laws, government, and society.   But neither Black Lives Matter nor the Democrats recognize the truth about Socialism and Communism.

Socialism and Communism are merely labels.  Even at its height, Russia was never a communist nation.  It was an oligarchy hiding behind the communist label.  The same is true for the Chinese Communist Party today.  Minick put it this way: “Like the Democratic People’s Republic of Korea, also known as North Korea, Black Lives Matter is a fine name. And like the Democratic People’s Republic of Korea, that name is a mask hiding reality.”

Yet another reality behind the Black Lives Matter label is its cozy relationship with the Muslim Brotherhood and other Muslim organizations.  “The Muslim Students Association (MSA), another Muslim Brotherhood front, recently joined BLM in a Chicago protest to disrupt a Donald Trump campaign rally,” Scruggs discovered.

Need more evidence?  “In a December 2015 speech to the Muslim American Society (MAS) and the Islamic Circle of North America (ICNA), Nihad Awad, the Executive Director of CAIR, urged American Muslims to support the cause of Black Lives Matter, saying:  “Black Lives Matter is our matter. Black Lives Matter is our campaign.”

So much is Black Lives Matter a Muslim agenda item of great interest that Muslims have been creating a Black Lives Matter Toolkit.

According to Margari Aziza of the Muslim Anti-Racism Collaborative, “I’ve helped facilitate roundtables on Black Lives Matter at ISNA, a panel at Mosque Cares. For almost two years, I’ve been curating the Black Lives Matter Toolkit.”

It is not at all clear how Black Lives Matter members see the benefit to American black citizens given this Muslim Brotherhood goal: “Their primary stated objective is to bring the whole world under Sharia Law.”

What is clear is this:  the next time we see a Black Lives Matter poster we ought to think long and hard how that organization plans to solve America’s problems with racism.

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King Cartoons

Front Royal
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