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How to be a courteous driver



If you want to be a courteous driver who respects other road users, you should avoid making these risky, and sometimes illegal, maneuvers:

1. Tailgating
2. Cutting off other vehicles
3. Not using your turn signals
4. Zigzagging in traffic
5. Driving too fast
6. Not yielding the right of way
7. Honking repeatedly without reason
8. Stopping on the pedestrian crosswalk at an intersection
9. Making vulgar hand gestures or shouting insults

In addition, you should steer clear of driving too close to cyclists and pedestrians, passing them without slowing down and not giving them the right of way. You should also avoid going through puddles at full speed when driving past them.

Furthermore, it’s useful to keep in mind that not all irritating or dangerous maneuvers performed by other motorists are done deliberately. It’s essential to stay calm if another driver makes a mistake. Likewise, if you make a blunder, issuing an apologetic hand gesture can help diffuse the situation.

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Lastly, if someone helps you out when making a turn or changing lanes on a crowded street, remember to thank them with a wave. Courtesy is more than just not being rude.

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5 tips for driving with your pet this summer



Do you have plans to take your cat or dog on a road trip this summer? Here are five tips for a safe and comfortable ride.

1. Wear your pet out
Before you embark on your road trip, take your pet for a walk or engage in a long play session. This can help make your pet feel more rested and hopefully sleep for a portion of the trip.

2. Create a comfortable space
Purchase a pet hammock and harness to keep your pet safe and save your car’s upholstery from fur and claw marks. Alternatively, you can keep your furry friend in an enclosed crate if they’re likely to move around and become a distraction while you’re driving.

3. Pack the essentials
Always travel with your pet’s necessities, including food, water, treats, and bags for pet waste. You should also bring a few toys to keep your pet busy and prevent them from chewing on your car’s seat belts or headrests.

4. Take frequent breaks
Like you, your pet needs to take breaks after being cooped up in the car for hours. Consequently, it’s a good idea to stop every two hours to play with your pet and allow it to relieve itself.

5. Never leave your pet alone in the car
A parked vehicle can quickly turn into a hot oven during the summer, even with the windows open. On top of risking heatstroke, leaving your pet alone in your vehicle also makes it vulnerable to theft.

Lastly, ask your veterinarian about remedies you can give your pet to prevent nausea and motion sickness while you’re on the road.

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Leaks can be a tell-tale sign



Your vehicle probably isn’t very new. Still, it seems to be running well. Your budget won’t allow you to trade it in for a newer one. Consequently, you pay great attention to its maintenance: You check the tire pressure regularly, keep the vehicle clean, have the oil changed punctually, and use only good quality gasoline. You trust your vehicle entirely. But lately, you have noticed some dark spots on the pavement underneath it. Even worse, these spots appear to be liquid. They might very well mean you have a mechanical leak developing in your car or truck.

What can you do about it? Obviously, an appointment with your favorite me­chanic is a must. He will surely find where the leak (or leaks) is coming from and, in most cases, be able to make the necessary repairs.

The key is to understand what the leaks are; in most cases, they are oil. If the spots are black and shiny and feel slick to the touch, chances are its oil, and you should try to locate the source. In many cases, you won’t be able to fix these leaks, and it is time to see your mechanic. If the slick liquid has a reddish color to it, the leak might be coming from the vehicle’s transmission. In this case, it could only be a loose-fitting joint; however, you’ll still want to have a specialist look at it.

If the liquid is green or yellow and feels sticky (and tastes sweet if you dare test it — an old mechanic’s trick that is no longer recommended), chances are the leak is engine coolant. Many other accessories could leak from the steering pump, to the braking system. Never tolerate leaks or ignore them; in every case, have the vehicle inspected by a professional.

Leaks from a vehicle can tell a lot.

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The ‘big four’ driver distractions



Returning from vacation, you were pretty proud of yourself for negotiating all the interstates without a wrong turn. But then your seatmate engaged you in an interesting conversation, and what happened? You missed your exit.

Distraction. That interesting conversation not only made you miss a turn, it put you and your passengers in danger. If a situation occurred that required fast action, could you have avoided an accident?

According to the National Highway Traffic Safety Commission, four distinct types of distraction affect a driver’s ability to operate a vehicle safely.

Auditory distractions include conversations with passengers and listening to music or audiobooks.

Visual distractions include such activities as looking at the scenery and checking out other cars.

Biomechanical distractions are activities such as adjusting the air conditioning, dialing a cellphone, using day planners, making notes, and eating.

Cognitive distractions include whatever is taking your mind off the road and driving. Examples are preoccupation with other thoughts, worrying, and planning what you will do later.

Cell phones, especially texting, are unique in that they encompass all four modes of driver distraction, say experts at Dynamic Science, a private research organization.

Research on cell phone use crashes shows that drivers often run off the road or hit something stopped in front of them, neither of which would happen if they were paying attention.

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How to pack your vehicle for a road trip



Are you going on a long road trip? Here are a few tips on how to organize your luggage.

Load heavy objects lower in your vehicle, and pack larger items at the back and smaller ones near the front. Fill in the gaps with bags and soft pieces. If your trunk isn’t separate from the cab, don’t stack items above the height of the back headrest. This will prevent things from falling over the seat if you suddenly hit the brakes.

Roof rack
Consult the manufacturer’s recommended weight capacity for your vehicle before loading your roof rack. In any case, avoid placing heavy items on the roof of your car. Store them in the trunk instead. Place the heaviest items against the roof bars and ensure the load is well balanced and securely strapped down.

Place heavy items on or close to the floor and as centrally as possible. Store light items on either side of the trailer, taking care not to obstruct your vision. Make sure you don’t exceed the vehicle’s load and towing capacity. Safely secure the items so nothing falls off or gets blown away. If your car’s rear suspension feels saggy, your load isn’t properly balanced and could negatively affect your handling.

Keep your vehicle’s registration, itinerary, tickets, sunglasses, tissues, games, bottled water, and snacks in the cab. Of course, try to leave enough space for everyone to sit comfortably.

Have a great holiday!

If you’re carrying luggage in a roof box, make sure you know the total height of your vehicle with the roof box to avoid getting in an accident.

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How to clean your tires and wheels



Cleaning your vehicle’s tires and wheels does more than make your car look good. Manufacturers recommend cleaning your tires every other week. Cleaning removes brake dust, rotor shavings, and road salt, all of which can shorten the lifespan of your tires. Here’s how to properly clean your car’s tires and wheels.

What you’ll need
Have these products ready to go:

• Bucket and warm water
• Clean cloths
• Hose and spray nozzle
• Medium-bristled brush
• Toothbrush
• Dish soap

Step 1: Rinse
Wash the tires one at a time to keep the surface wet while you work. Get rid of any loose dirt with a quick spray of your hose. Spray from various angles to remove the most debris from the wheels.

Step 2: Wash the tires
Work on the tires first because the dirty water will soil the wheels. Scrub the tires with a brush, warm water, and dish soap. Allow the soapy water to soften the grime on the tires before rinsing. Repeat this step if necessary and rinse out your brush when finished.

Step 3: Wash the rims
Wash the rims using the brush, warm water, and dish soap. Use an old toothbrush to get into tight areas. Repeat if necessary. After rinsing, thoroughly dry the wheel and the tires with a clean cloth.

With shiny tires and wheels, your car is in showroom shape, and you’ll give your tires a few more miles on the road.

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Is it safe for young children to sit in the front seat?



Although it may seem logical to place your young child in the front seat of your car to keep an eye on them, you might want to think again.

The back seat is safest
While legislation varies throughout North America, the safest place for your child is the back seat, away from active airbags. In a head-on collision, the front airbag will restrain the head and abdomen of an adult. When a child sits in the passenger seat, the airbag deploys at head level, potentially causing severe neck and head injuries. The sheer force of airbag deployment is enough to harm a child seriously.

Airbag deactivation
Today, many vehicles are equipped with a mechanism that momentarily deactivates the passenger-side airbag if a child is sitting there. If your car doesn’t have this feature, and you must put your child in the front seat, make sure to move the front seat as far back from the airbag deployment zone as possible. You may also want to consider permanently deactivating the airbag.

Correctly using a car seat is one of the best steps you can take to protect your child in a crash.

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Thank You to our Local Business Participants:


Aders Insurance Agency, Inc (State Farm)

Aire Serv Heating and Air Conditioning

Apple Dumpling Learning Center

Apple House

Auto Care Clinic

Beaver Tree Services

Blake and Co. Hair Spa

Blue Ridge Arts Council

Blue Ridge Education

BNI Shenandoah Valley

C&C's Ice Cream Shop

Christine Binnix - McEnearney Associates

Code Ninjas Front Royal

Cool Techs Heating and Air

Down Home Comfort Bakery

Downtown Market

Dusty's Country Store

Edward Jones-Bret Hrbek

Explore Art & Clay

Family Preservation Services

First Baptist Church

Front Royal Women's Resource Center

Front Royal-Warren County Chamber of Commerce

G&M Auto Sales Inc

Garcia & Gavino Family Bakery

Gourmet Delights Gifts & Framing

Green to Ground Electrical

Groups Recover Together

House of Hope

I Want Candy

I'm Just Me Movement

Jen Avery, REALTOR & Jenspiration, LLC

Key Move Properties, LLC

KW Solutions

Legal Services Plans of Northern Shenendoah

Main Street Travel

Makeover Marketing Systems

Marlow Automotive Group

Mary Carnahan Graphic Design

Merchants on Main Street

Mountain Trails

National Media Services

No Doubt Accounting

Northwestern Community Services Board

Ole Timers Antiques

Penny Lane Hair Co.

Philip Vaught Real Estate Management

Phoenix Project

Reaching Out Now

Rotary Club of Warren County

Royal Blends Nutrition

Royal Cinemas

Royal Examiner

Royal Family Bowling Center

Royal Oak Bookshop

Royal Oak Computers

Royal Oak Bookshop

Royal Spice

Ruby Yoga

Salvation Army

Samuels Public Library

SaVida Health

Skyline Insurance

St. Luke Community Clinic

Studio Verde

The Institute for Association & Nonprofit Research

The Studio-A Place for Learning

The Valley Today - The River 95.3

The Vine and Leaf

Valley Chorale

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

Warren Coalition

Warren County Democratic Committee

Warren County Department of Social Services

Warrior Psychotherapy Services, PLLC

WCPS Work-Based Learning

What Matters & Beth Medved Waller, Inc Real Estate

White Picket Fence

Woodward House on Manor Grade

King Cartoons

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Upcoming Events

7:00 pm Appalachian Chamber Music Festiv... @ Barns of Rose Hill
Appalachian Chamber Music Festiv... @ Barns of Rose Hill
Aug 18 @ 7:00 pm – 9:30 pm
Appalachian Chamber Music Festival - Opening Night @ Barns of Rose Hill
The Appalachian Chamber Music Festival is delighted to be returning to the Barns of Rose Hill on Thursday, August 18, at 7pm, for the opening night concert of our 2022 summer season. The festival celebrates[...]
6:00 pm Fire Pit Fridays @ Shenandoah Valley Golf Club
Fire Pit Fridays @ Shenandoah Valley Golf Club
Aug 19 @ 6:00 pm – 9:00 pm
Fire Pit Fridays @ Shenandoah Valley Golf Club
…and be sure to attend our Fourth of July event!
11:00 am National Honeybee Day @ Sky Meadows State Park
National Honeybee Day @ Sky Meadows State Park
Aug 20 @ 11:00 am – 4:00 pm
National Honeybee Day @ Sky Meadows State Park
Historic Area The bees are buzzing at Sky Meadows State Park! Meet the Beekeepers of Northern Shenandoah as they perform a honey extraction. Learn about beekeeping, honeybees and the art of apiculture. Support beekeeping and[...]
12:00 pm Meet the Beekeepers @ Sky Meadows State Park
Meet the Beekeepers @ Sky Meadows State Park
Aug 21 @ 12:00 pm – 3:00 pm
Meet the Beekeepers @ Sky Meadows State Park
Carriage Barn in the Historic Area. What’s that buzzing? Meet with local apiarists of the Beekeepers of Northern Shenandoah (BONS) and discover the art of Apiculture (a.k.a. Beekeeping). This monthly program series examines all aspects[...]
3:00 pm Valley Chorale Audition Day @ Calvary Episcopal Church
Valley Chorale Audition Day @ Calvary Episcopal Church
Aug 23 @ 3:00 pm – 4:30 pm
Valley Chorale Audition Day @ Calvary Episcopal Church
If you have choral-singing experience, you’re invited to join The Valley Chorale! Rehearsals this fall culminate in our always-popular Christmas concerts in December. This year, we have a truly fantastic Christmas program planned. Auditions are[...]
6:30 pm Front Royal Wednesday Night Bingo @ Front Royal Volunteer Fire Deptartment
Front Royal Wednesday Night Bingo @ Front Royal Volunteer Fire Deptartment
Aug 24 @ 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[...]
7:00 pm Appalachian Chamber Music Festival @ Middleburg Community Center
Appalachian Chamber Music Festival @ Middleburg Community Center
Aug 25 @ 7:00 pm – 9:00 pm
Appalachian Chamber Music Festival @ Middleburg Community Center
Join the Appalachian Chamber Music Festival on Thursday, August 25, at 7:00 pm, for a concert at Middleburg Community Center as part of their 2022 Festival! ACMF brings this concert of festival highlights to the[...]
6:00 pm Fire Pit Fridays @ Shenandoah Valley Golf Club
Fire Pit Fridays @ Shenandoah Valley Golf Club
Aug 26 @ 6:00 pm – 9:00 pm
Fire Pit Fridays @ Shenandoah Valley Golf Club
…and be sure to attend our Fourth of July event!
10:00 am Habitat Detectives: A Late-Summe... @ Sky Meadows State Park
Habitat Detectives: A Late-Summe... @ Sky Meadows State Park
Aug 27 @ 10:00 am – 11:00 am
Habitat Detectives: A Late-Summer Children's Walk @ Sky Meadows State Park
Sensory Explorers’ Trail. Join Virginia Master Naturalist and teacher, Barbara Ermler, on a walk of exploration. Use your five senses to uncover clues to how various organisms – plants, animals, and more – work together[...]
7:30 pm Astronomy for Everyone @ Sky Meadows State Park
Astronomy for Everyone @ Sky Meadows State Park
Aug 27 @ 7:30 pm – 10:30 pm
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[...]