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FRPD settles into its new home with a smile – and continued unpacking



Above, FRPD Chief Kahle Magalis greets the media in public entranceway lobby of the new town police headquarters at 900 Monroe Ave. Photos/Roger Bianchini

On Monday, April 29, one week after the Front Royal Police Department transferred its base of operations out of the old and into the new, Chief Kahle Magalis offered the media a tour of that new. The new is the department’s new headquarters at Monroe Avenue’s intersection with Kendrick Lane. And while the length of the building runs along Kendrick, with its public entrance facing Monroe the address is 900 Monroe Avenue.

Greeting media at the public entrance and parking lot on Monroe Avenue, one of the first stops was what Chief Magalis described as a public meeting room.

“If somebody needs a meeting space and we’re able to make it happen for them then we’ll do that. This is the citizen’s building, we’re just living in it,” Magalis said of the community’s $10-million investment in a state-of-the-art police headquarters. It is an investment designed to take the department out of the past – a past that has included inadequate space to house the department under one roof since before its 2013 move into the old Jackson Street sheriff’s office – into a future forecast to stretch 40 years forward into the neighborhood of 2060.

Not far off the public entranceway a meeting room is available for citizen activities upon scheduled request – we hear the security is excellent.

Which one media humorist present – guess who – pointed out likely means the Front Royal Town Councils of that era will probably accomplish replacing the then 41-year-old building by the year 2100.

But today’s move – better late than never – is from the 7,236 square foot former Warren County Sheriff’s Office, as well as whatever square footage the department’s investigations unit occupied in the Town’s Comcast building on North Royal Avenue, into a two-building complex totaling 21,000 s.f., 14,600 s.f. in the front, main structure and 6,400 s.f. in the second, westernmost building. The last Town-owned police headquarters in the former post office at the intersection of West Main Street and Luray Avenue totaled 4,032 s.f.

So Magalis suggested visitors used to FRPD’s past locations not overreact to a sense of spaciousness in the new headquarters. “They designed it with that in mind, to accommodate that future expansion – that’s the new place. We’re tickled to death with it; we really are,” the chief said of his department’s reaction to its move. That department currently employs 52 staff, including 39 sworn law enforcement officers and 13 civilian support staff.

Built to last – architect’s aerial perspective on the 21,000 s.f. FRPD facility projected to serve 40 years of town and departmental growth

While moving into a single location, modern headquarters is the realization of a professional dream for the department’s personnel the chief noted that fatigue may be the dominant reaction thus far. To a great extent the move had to be accomplished by department personnel due to the nature of the materials being moved relating to law enforcement activity and equipment. But the department should be ready to celebrate, along with the citizens they serve, by the time an open house scheduled for the first week of June rolls around.

How is the adjustment to the new digs going, we asked the chief.

“It’s going to take some time – it’s like crawling out of a cave into functioning society, but we’re working on it,” he laughed in response.

The communications room was manned by Cassie Courtney during the April 29 media tour

Magalis said he has already observed a positive professional impact from moving the department under one roof. “You can walk down the hall instead of a couple blocks over to holler at people … the guys are seeing each other, the detectives are seeing each other at lunch or whatever – it’s just through the course of having that contact the information gets passed along faster.

Speaking of lunch we saw a nice kitchen, as well as some break areas spread through the facility – and even managed to score a donut from one of two boxes brought over by a new citizen neighbor. “Michael Williams brought these over,” this reporter exclaimed upon the news – “Oh yea, he owes me a donut from way back, I think, mind if I collect?” I asked, making sure a bust for stealing departmental assets wasn’t to follow my foray into the donut box.

Moving from the main, front building into the courtyard separating the two-building complex, Magalis and Major Kevin Nicewarner pointed to the stone wall separating FRPD from the rear of neighboring residential homes. Magalis and his major noted that the wall was designed to minimize noise and lighting consequences of the department’s presence from the closest of its new neighbors.

Above, Chief Magalis and Major Nicewarner in the outside lounge between the two buildings; below a neighborly wall – constructed not only for security, but to minimize departmental noise and night lighting from neighbors.

“We’ll still be out here slamming car doors at two or three o’clock in the morning; radios will be going off and everything else; so you want to try to be as environmentally friendly with the neighbors as possible,” Magalis observed.

“We’re trying to keep as much normalcy in the neighborhood as possible,” Magalis said of shielding the light and noise pollution of 24-hour-a-day police activity from neighbors.

The chief said there were still punch list tweaks to the building being accomplished by the contractor, primarily on the outside – though one suddenly pumping, unused air nozzle in the enclosed back garage area gave a noisy punctuation to the ongoing punch list work.

As we made our way back through the facility it was observed that the building had that “new car smell” to it, though perhaps more appropriately it should have been “new PD smell” – though none of us present had likely ever experienced the scent of the latter previously, at least not without a visit to an outside jurisdiction.

But no more, right here in River City law enforcement has met the 21st Century – and they like what they have found there.

Captain Crystal Cline welcomes the press to the second building housing an enclosed garage – recalcitrant air hose hangs from ceiling between utility vehicle and motorcycle; and K-9 units among other things. The main staff parking lot is visible beyond dog run and garage bay doors at the western end of complex.

Officer Bryan House at work at computer terminal in common area leading to break room

Above, Patrol Division briefing room; below a schedule and event board; and below that a clean captain’s office

There is a physical component to the job – portion of the gym and staff lockers beyond

The bike patrol room needs a little work

Evidence lockers and evidence collection materials

Above, the chief in main break area; and yes, even law enforcement officers get some down time

Facility dedication plaque near front of main building

A view of Kendrick Lane out the front public entrance-lobby area where the chief greeted us to begin the tour

Patrol cars re-entering the facility

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Front Royal based substance abuse recovery program receives grant



Harvest Missions Outreach Center’s Exodus program has been awarded the Rappahannock Electric Power of Change grant. Each month Rappahannock Electric members give to The Power of Change. These donations are invested back into Rappahannock Electric communities through grants to organizations that work towards improving REC communities.

Harvest Missions Outreach Center’s Exodus program is a faith-based intensive outpatient substance abuse recovery program. The program utilizes evidence-based curriculum in a faith-based setting to provide a comprehensive recovery program. The grant made it possible to expand their curriculum to include the Matrix Model for Criminal Justice Settings. The Matrix program, which is used by drug court programs across the country, is designed to meet the needs of law-involved clients who struggle with addiction to alcohol and other drugs. The program focuses on overcoming criminal thinking and strategies for successful recovery skills. With the implementation of the Matrix curriculum, the Exodus program will be able to provide services to those who are in the criminal justices system in Warren County.

To assure that finances are not a barrier to treatment, there is no fee for the Exodus program. The program is supported by grants, contributions from local churches and individual donations (Clients are asked to make a contribution of whatever they can afford, even if it is only $1.00).

Harvest Missions Outreach Center is located at the former United Methodist Church in Happy Creek (1652 Happy Creek Rd). To find out more about the program, visit or call (540) 645-6450.

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Element Risk Management acquires new agency, expands local footprint



Element Risk Management has acquired Stoneburner-Carter Insurance, located in Front Royal, Virginia.

Stoneburner-Carter Insurance

Stoneburner-Carter Insurance was established in 1985 and is a three-generation family firm based in Warren County, Virginia, formerly at 11 Water Street, Front Royal, VA 22630. Stoneburner-Carter has served their clients well by putting them first and delivering first-rate customer service. For over 35 years, they have taken pride in knowing that the insurance they offer is the best for their clients’ families and businesses. Stoneburner-Carter has been committed to working with and protecting their community.

“Stoneburner-Carter has always treated their clients as friends and neighbors. That is a core value of Element Risk Management and we will continue to provide the personalized service that their clients are accustomed to. We look forward to them joining us at Element Risk Management,” said Dave Rivell, Partner at Element Risk.

Element Risk Management is an independent insurance agency based out of West Chester, Pennsylvania. Element provides personal, commercial, and specialty insurance, as well as risk management solutions. For more information, visit

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Kindness is contagious at LFK Elementary School



On Monday, January 24, 2022, Leslie Fox Keyser Elementary School kicked off The Great Kindness Challenge week. LFK joins other schools and millions of students around the world in the Great Kindness Challenge 2022. Students and staff are creating a kinder and more compassionate community by practicing how easy it is to be kind to others during this week-long event.

The GKC initiative, presented by Kids for Peace, is a global campaign that promotes kindness in kindergarten through grade twelve schools. It is a positive, action-based bullying-prevention initiative that creates a school culture of kindness, compassion, unity, and respect.

Three things in human life are important: the first is to be kind; the second is to be kind; and the third is to be kind. – Henry James

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Update: Bentonville teen dies off Chincoteague Bay after boat capsizes, boy, 17, missing



Update January 22, 2022 – The Virginia Marine Police are investigating a boating incident that left one dead and one missing.

At approximately 9:22 am on January 22, 2022, the Virginia Marine Police received a call regarding a capsized vessel in the Chincoteague Bay near Curtis Merritt Harbor. Witnesses reported that a 16-foot John Boat carrying four people was struck by a wave causing the vessel to capsize. All four people went into the water. A Good Samaritan was able to rescue two people who remained with the vessel. The United States Coast Guard (USCG) recovered one deceased adult male, identified as Corey Alles of Bentonville Virginia. A 17-year-old male remains missing.

The Virginia Marine Police will resume the search for a missing 17-year-old male in the morning. The other adult male and a 17-year-old male were transported to the hospital with non-life-threatening injuries.

The United States Coast Guard, Virginia Marine Police, Virginia State Police, Maryland State Police, and the Chincoteague Police Department are assisting with the investigation.

The Virginia Marine Police and the Virginia Marine Resources Commission offers its deepest condolences to the families during this time.”

More information to follow as it becomes available.

A Bentonville teen died, and another teen is missing after their Jon boat capsized it Saturday morning in the Chincoteague Bay, according to a media release from the Virginia Marine Resources Commission.

The incident occurred around 9:20 a.m. near Curtis Merritt Harbor at the southern end of the island. A wave apparently hit the 16-foot boat, according to Marine Police and all four people went into the water.

Cory Alles, in a social media post from August 2021.

Marine police stated that on board were two 17-year-olds, a 19-year-old and 18-year-old Corey Alles of Bentonville, VA.

A good Samaritan rescued two of the passengers near the boat, while the U.S. Coast Guard recovered the body of Alles. Officials say the 19-year-old man and one of the 17-year-olds were taken to the hospital with injuries considered non-life-threatening.

The release said that a 17-year-old male is still missing, and marine police will continue their search for him in the morning.

The U.S. Coast Guard, Virginia Marine Police, Virginia State Police, Maryland State Police, and the Chincoteague Police Department are all jointly

conducting the investigation. The families and the next of kin have been notified.

Officials declined to comment if the missing teen was from the Front Royal/Warren County area. This story will be updated as more information becomes available.

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VSP investigating a fatal crash in Fauquier County



Virginia State Police Senior Trooper J. Lewis is investigating a fatal two-vehicle crash in Fauquier County. The crash occurred Friday, January 21, 2022, at 6:51 p.m. along Route 17 (Winchester Rd.), 2 tenths of a mile north of Interstate 66.

A 2021 Jeep Wrangler was traveling north on Rte. 17 when it crossed a double solid yellow centerline and collided head-on with a southbound 2017 Dodge Ram.

The driver of the Jeep, Gilbert F. Dzakpasu, 43, of Germantown, Md., died at the scene of the crash as a result of his injuries. Dzakpasu was wearing a seatbelt.

The driver of the Dodge, a 22-year-old male, of Marshall, Va., suffered serious, but non-life-threatening injuries in the crash and was flown to INOVA Fairfax Hospital for treatment. The male was wearing a seatbelt.

Speed is considered a factor in the crash.


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Valley Health distributes COVID test kits to community partners in region



At a time of high community COVID-19 positivity, Valley Health is distributing more than 150,000 free COVID-19 test kits throughout its rural service area, courtesy of the federal government.

The 2-test kits began arriving last week through a Biden Administration initiative of the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services, Health Resources and Services Administration (HRSA), in an effort to address the needs of residents in medically underserved areas.

Valley Health operates 19 federally-designated Rural Health Clinics (RHCs) in Virginia, West Virginia, and Maryland to ease a shortage of primary medical care. HRSA’s program provides test kits through its network of RHCs to clinic staff, patients, and surrounding communities.

In addition to offering test kits to RHC staff and patients, Valley Health is distributing them to other physician practices and dozens of community agencies and organizations for use by their staff and those they serve. The distribution includes law enforcement, fire and rescue, free medical clinics, health departments, churches, and detention centers, shelters, and other congregate settings.

“We are entering our third year of caring for patients with COVID-19 and trying to protect the community from the ravages of this virus,” said Jeffrey Feit, MD, Valley Health Population and Community Health Officer. “The current Omicron variant is particularly contagious and there’s an overwhelming demand for testing. We are thrilled to be the conduit for these do-it-yourself test kits from the U.S. government to help our community take decisive steps if they are positive: isolate and protect others, and seek care if they have significant symptoms or underlying health conditions.”

Each test kit box contains two tests with clear instructions and the nasal swab and reagent needed to obtain fast, easy-to-understand results in 10 minutes. It is recommended that individuals use the second test over two to three days, with at least 24 hours and no more than 36 hours between tests.

Jason Craig, EdD, Valley Health Director of Community Health, has delivered thousands of test kits this week and learned first-hand how vital the rapid tests are for community agencies struggling to make safe decisions during the pandemic. The Salvation Army’s residential program manager, Deborah Moody, expressed her appreciation and offered insight on the value of the rapid tests to an organization trying to serve as many individuals as possible.

“We are currently running at half capacity because we were unable to know if someone was coming in with COVID and needed to isolate them for five days before releasing them into the population,” Moody explained. “This will allow us a shorter isolation time. Being the winter, it is crucial that we offer services to individuals experiencing homelessness. Thank you for helping to make that happen.”

Valley Health’s six hospitals are working on a plan to give kits to patients on discharge from the hospital, Craig added. ”We are putting them in the hands of many local family medicine and specialty care practices to help distribute throughout our communities. We want to be a good community partner and are eager to put the test kits we requested from HRSA to use for the health and safety of our friends and neighbors.” Valley Health is also asking employees to take two kits for their families and give two to a friend or neighbor “so that we can extend into the communities where our employees live,” Craig said.

Craig suggested that anyone unable to find a COVID-19 test kit through one of the practices or community organizations on Valley Health’s initial distribution effort should submit a request to receive by mail from

For more on Valley Health COVID-19 services and visitation guidelines, visit For information on testing and return to work guidance, visit

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Thank You to our Local Business Participants:


Apple Dumpling Learning Center

Apple House

Auto Care Clinic

Blue Ridge Arts Council

Blue Ridge Education

BNI Shenandoah Valley

C&C's Ice Cream Shop

Code Ninjas Front Royal

Cool Techs Heating and Air

Down Home Comfort Bakery

Downtown Market

Dusty's Country Store

Edward Jones-Bret Hrbek

Family Preservation Services

Front Royal Women's Resource Center

Front Royal-Warren County Chamber of Commerce

Gourmet Delights Gifts & Framing

Green to Ground Electrical

Groups Recover Together

I Want Candy

I'm Just Me Movement

Jen Avery, REALTOR & Jenspiration, LLC

Main Street Travel

Makeover Marketing Systems

Marlow Automotive Group

Mary Carnahan Graphic Design

Mountain Trails

National Media Services

Ole Timers Antiques

Phoenix Project

Reaching Out Now

Royal Blends Nutrition

Royal Examiner

Royal Oak Bookshop

Royal Oak Computers

Royal Oak Bookshop

Royal Spice

Salvation Army

SaVida Health

Skyline Insurance

St. Luke Community Clinic

Studio Verde

The Studio-A Place for Learning

The Valley Today - The River 95.3

The Vine and Leaf

Warren Charge (Bennett's Chapel, Limeton, Asbury)

Warren County Department of Social Services

Warrior Psychotherapy Services, PLLC

What Matters & Beth Medved Waller, Inc Real Estate

White Picket Fence

Woodward House on Manor Grade

King Cartoons

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Jan 26 @ 6:30 pm – 9:30 pm
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Bingo to support the American Cancer Society mission, organized by Relay For Life of Front Royal. Every Wednesday evening Early Bird Bingo at 6:30 p.m. Regular Bingo from 7-9:30 p.m. Food and refreshments available More[...]
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People Incorporated is cohosting a virtual financial services workshop for small business owners to learn about business loans, technical assistance, training, and other services provided by the agency. The workshop is scheduled for Monday, Jan.[...]
6:30 pm Front Royal Wednesday Night Bingo @ Front Royal Volunteer Fire Deptartment
Front Royal Wednesday Night Bingo @ Front Royal Volunteer Fire Deptartment
Feb 2 @ 6:30 pm – 9:30 pm
Front Royal Wednesday Night Bingo @ Front Royal Volunteer Fire Deptartment
Bingo to support the American Cancer Society mission, organized by Relay For Life of Front Royal. Every Wednesday evening Early Bird Bingo at 6:30 p.m. Regular Bingo from 7-9:30 p.m. Food and refreshments available More[...]
all-day First Friday @ Downtown Main Street
First Friday @ Downtown Main Street
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Come celebrate First Friday! Downtown businesses will be open late, until 8 p.m., on the first Friday and Saturday of each month.
all-day First Friday @ Downtown Main Street
First Friday @ Downtown Main Street
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First Friday @ Downtown Main Street
Come celebrate First Friday! Downtown businesses will be open late, until 8 p.m., on the first Friday and Saturday of each month.
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Women’s Wellness Workshop @ ONLINE
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Astronomy for Everyone @ Sky Meadows State Park
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Astronomy for Everyone @ Sky Meadows State Park
Historic Area: Discover our International Dark-Sky Park! Our evenings begin with a half-hour children’s “Junior Astronomer” program, followed by a discussion about the importance of dark skies and light conservation. Then join NASA Jet Propulsion[...]
6:30 pm Front Royal Wednesday Night Bingo @ Front Royal Volunteer Fire Deptartment
Front Royal Wednesday Night Bingo @ Front Royal Volunteer Fire Deptartment
Feb 9 @ 6:30 pm – 9:30 pm
Front Royal Wednesday Night Bingo @ Front Royal Volunteer Fire Deptartment
Bingo to support the American Cancer Society mission, organized by Relay For Life of Front Royal. Every Wednesday evening Early Bird Bingo at 6:30 p.m. Regular Bingo from 7-9:30 p.m. Food and refreshments available More[...]
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Winter Tree Identification Workshop @ Sky Meadows State Park
Feb 12 @ 10:00 am – 2:00 pm
Winter Tree Identification Workshop @ Sky Meadows State Park
Winter Tree Identification Workshop: Botany and Bloom Series Historic Area Even after the chilly breezes of autumn have stripped them of their leaves, trees provide clues to their identification by way of their bark, leaf[...]