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Waggin’ for Dragons races Saturday, Aug. 3, aid Front Royal animal shelter

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Eight teams are ready to paddle on the Shenandoah in support of the county Humane Society and Wagner Animal Shelter. Courtesy Photo HSWC

The Julia Wagner Animal Shelter in Front Royal has a busy time ahead of it this summer, including the popular “Waggin’ for Dragons” boat race on the Shenandoah River this coming Saturday, August 3.

Eight boats containing 20 paddlers in each compete for “honor and glory” again this year in one of the Humane Society of Warren County’s (HSWC) major fundraisers. Some $16,000 alone will be donated by boat sponsors and the individual paddlers.

The competitors this year, who will practice Wednesday through Friday prior to Saturday’s race, are: Winchester Petco (the Petco Foundation is the major sponsor of the event); “Legally High” launched by the High Knob Community Association; “Good Neighbors,” representing the two State Farm Insurance agencies in Front Royal; the “Rotary River Dogs” representing the area’s three Rotary clubs; “Paws for a Cause” sponsored by Veterinary Surgical Centers; the “Jason Poe for Sheriff” paddlers; the “Premier Paddlers” representing Coldwell Banker; and the “Next Homies” representing Next Home Realty.

The races may be viewed from the Front Royal Golf Club property with transportation provided by the Front Royal Trolley and a County school bus from the Walmart store parking lot starting at 8:30 a.m.

The Humane Society of Warren County’s Wagner Shelter Executive Director, Meghan Bowers, also drew attention to August 17 and the national “Clear the Shelters” adoption event in which the HSWC will participate. Animals will be available for adoption throughout that day from 10 a.m. to 7 p.m.

Also, with “kitten season” already here, the shelter is seeking people/families to provide foster care for kittens that overwhelm the shelter at this time. “The HSWC will provide everything you need,” Bowers said.

Wagner Shelter

It is ‘kitten season’ and the Wagner Shelter is looking for help in either temporary to permanent housing for some lovable younger cuties. Royal Examiner File Photos/Roger Bianchini

New volunteer orientation classes for adults (16 and over) are scheduled for three Sundays, August 11; September 8; and October 13, at the Progress Drive shelter at 2:30 p.m. For children (10 to 15) to become active volunteers, orientation dates are Wednesday, September 4, and Wednesday, October 2, both at 5:30 p.m.

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Volunteers turn Day of Service into an effort to cleanup part of Warren County

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Rea with Eric and his sons are ready to fill some trash bags

Roadside trash includes fast food containers, plastic bags, lighters, butts, bottles, cans, and Styrofoam.

As part of this year’s National Day of Service, a group of folks from Warren County decided to clean up sections of Route 522 between Robin Lane and Gate 3 of the Smithsonian Conservation Biology Institute.  It was a perfect day for the cleanup, with temperatures above freezing and into the 40s, and little wind or precipitation.  One big advantage of doing a cleanup at this time of year is that you can go into the underbrush and not worry about encountering a snake, or dealing with ticks, spiders, etc.  In addition, with the leaves off the trees and bushes, it is easier to spot trash.

Most of the cleanup crew members met at Mountain Home B&B about 10am on January 18th, dressed for the weather and wearing good boots for tromping along the side of the road and into the brush.  Mountain Home provided trash bags and gloves, and offered a free Gatorade or Vitamin Water for each volunteer.  The B&B owners also assured participants that they would transport all the bags of trash to one of Warren County’s five refuse/recycle collection sites.  Several participants also helped with taking pictures to commemorate the event.

Steve shows what’s already in the bag

The road section that was cleaned up includes the Appalachian Trail road crossing and parking area, but that wasn’t where most of the trash was found.  Cigarette butts, glass and plastic bottles, beverage cans, Styrofoam cups and plastic lids and straws, were distributed fairly evenly across the entire stretch of roadway, indicating that some people in vehicles must be tossing these items out their windows as they drive along.  One brand of beer kept showing up again and again, leading us to wonder if one person was throwing a beer bottle out the window every day.  Other items collected appeared to be construction debris that was not carefully strapped down and then flew out of trucks as they began to accelerate.

Most of the trash bags headed to the refuse collection site

Rea and Lisa prep to pick up trash

Smokers may not realize that tossing their butts out the window or on the ground (unless it is on your own private property) is littering and is against the law.  The filters, made up of plasticized cellulose acetate, do not biodegrade and can last for many years.

Besides being gross, and littering being illegal, the trash isn’t good for the local wildlife either.  It can be eaten by fish, birds, and insects, cause suffocation, and eventually get into our streams and contribute to pollution in our oceans.  Plastics and Styrofoam are particularly troublesome as they do not biodegrade, but just break into smaller and smaller pieces that make them even more likely to be consumed in the ecosystem.  Trash on our roadsides will not help bring visitors into our county and town, or help local businesses, or bring tax revenue into our local government.

Rea stands ready to tote some trash

The only excuse for littering is laziness and disrespect.  If we love our country, and love our county, we need to stop trashing it!

Disposing of trash properly (and reducing the Styrofoam and plastic packaging that you buy in the first place) helps keep it out of the environment and helps make Warren County a nicer place to live.  The 12 roadside cleanup volunteers did a fantastic job today, collecting roughly a dozen big, contractor bags of trash, and a few larger items like car parts and a cabinet panel. There are several places around Warren County where trash seems to accumulate at an alarming rate, and this stretch of 522 is one of them.  Any time you want to get out and make a difference, you can grab a trash bag and just pick up trash.  Just be sure to take each bag to a refuse/recycle collection site when you are done.

Steve extracts bottles from the brush

The National Day of Service is now a tradition each year on the 3rd Monday in January, Martin Luther King Day, to honor the life of Rev. Martin Luther King, who “sought equality and human rights for African Americans, the economically disadvantaged and all victims of injustice through peaceful protest.”  (The History Channel website)

Susan and Lisa are ready to tackle the terrain

Several groups interested in service projects and/or caring for creation were specifically invited to participate, but everyone was welcome.  There were representatives from the Warren County Democratic committee (WCDC), the Warren Front Royal Appalachian Trail (WFRAT) Committee, Calvary Episcopal Church and even an Appalachian Trail hiker who stopped by to help.  If you or your group are interested in helping with the MLK roadside cleanup next year, or with other roadside cleanups, please contact Lisa Jenkins of Mountain Home B&B at MountainHomeAT@gmail.com.

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This week’s showtimes at Royal Cinemas as of January 22nd

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Are you looking for the full movie-going experience without having to wait in the long lines that often accompany that experience? Then look no further because Royal Cinemas movie theatre is the answer. Get the whole gang together and enjoy a movie! We are continuing to practice “6 Foot Social Distancing” with 30% capacity reserved seating in all auditoriums.

Here is a list of this week’s showtimes at Royal Cinemas as of Friday, January 22:

• Friday: No Showtime
• Saturday: 3:45
• Sunday: 3:45 & 7:00

• Mon – Thurs: 7:00
Rated PG13  |  Run Time: 2 hour 29 min

• Friday: 7:20
• Sat & Sun: 4:10 & 7:20
• Mon – Thurs: 7:20
Rated PG13  |  Run Time: 1 hour 48 min

• Friday: 7:10
• Sat & Sun: 4:00 & 7:10
• Mon – Thurs: 7:10
Rated PG13  |  Run Time: 1 hour 58 min


Ticket prices are as follows:

  • Adult: $9
  • Child (under 12): $6
  • Military: $7
  • Student (college): $7
  • Senior: $7
  • Matinees, All Seating: $6

COMING SOON:

  • “Cinderella”
  • “Tom and Jerry”
  • “The Little Things”
  • “Nobody”
  • “Raya and the Last Dragon”
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Commemoration of the Battle of Cowpens sponsored by the Sons of the American Revolution

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On January 16, 2021, the Colonel James Wood II Chapter of the Sons of the American Revolution sponsored a commemoration of the Battle of Cowpens at Mt. Hebron Cemetery in Winchester. This was a hybrid event conducted both on-site and virtually.

On-site wreath presentation from left to right: Jim Simmons, Eric Robinson, Chip Daniel, Jeff Thomas and Dave Cook. Photos courtesy of Anita Bonner.

The Battle of Cowpens became the turning point in the southern campaign during the Revolutionary War. Up to the fall of 1780, the British under General Charles Cornwallis had been running over the colonial militias with relative ease in the southern campaign. In October, General Nathanael Greene was given command of the Southern Department of the Continental forces. He had determined that he was not ready to meet Cornwallis head on at this time and made the decision to divide his Army. He gave General Daniel Morgan command of a wing that was sent west to raise morale and find supplies for the Army. Soon after, the British felt this Army was a threat to their flank and General Cornwallis ordered cavalry Lieutenant Colonel Banastre Tarleton to the west to find and destroy Morgan’s fighting force. Morgan went north to avoid being trapped between Tarleton and Cornwallis. When he reached the Broad River and found it was at flood level, he decided to stand and fight. Tarleton had pushed his troops hard to catch his foe. Morgan was aware of Tarleton’s mode of attack, knowing he would be aggressive with a headlong assault and developed tactics that are still taught at West Point today. His plan was to conduct a double envelopment of Tarleton’s forces. His Army included 600 Continental and State Soldiers and roughly 1300 militiamen aligned against a force of 1,150 British. He knew many of his militiamen were not experienced fighters.

The night of January 16th, he went among his men and spoke with them on a personal level, encouraging them to do their best. The battle order was “No burning, no flying: but face about and give battle to the enemy & acquit ourselves like men in defense of their baggage, their lives and the interest of the Country”. He deployed his Army in three main lines. The first was comprised of 150 sharpshooters and the second of militia men. He asked that they fire 2 rounds and then retreat to the left side of the formation. Tarleton roused his men at 2:00 a.m. on January 17th for a 12 mile march in difficult marching conditions. The British Army was exhausted after running out of food and having only four hours of sleep when asked to attack in damp, cold weather. When Tarleton saw the colonials retreating, he felt the field was his and encouraged his troops to charge ahead. Seeing the retreating Americans, the British charged aggressively into the third line of continentals and experienced militia who held their ground. Morgan’s Army went on the offensive. The Continentals in the center, mounted a bayonet charge. Tarleton’s force, faced with a terrible surprise, began to collapse; some men surrendering on the spot, while others turned and ran. The American cavalry came around from behind the American left to hit the British on their right flank and rear. The militia, having now reorganized, charged out from behind the hill to the British left flank.

Morgan’s Army took 712 prisoners and effected 110 casualties. Tarleton’s elite fighting unit was wiped out as a fighting force. Of note, fighting in the battle were several units from Virginia, including a company of Continentals, a detachment of Virginia State Troops and four militia companies. After the battle, Morgan sent the Virginia Militia home but used them as guards escorting the prisoners who were marched to Winchester prison camps. This victory is known as the turning point of the war in the South, which lead to the American victory at Yorktown in October of 1781.

The musket squad from left to right: Brett Osborn, Paul Christensen, Ken Bonner, Sean Carrigan, Pat Kelly, Dave Cook and Eric Robinson.

The commemoration ceremony was conducted at Mt. Hebron, with Chip Daniel conducting the on-site ceremony. This included a combined Color Guard from three SAR Chapters. Included were Virginia SAR 1st Vice President Jeff Thomas, Colonel James Wood II compatriots David Carpenter, Sean Carrigan, Paul Christensen, Brett Osborn, Eric Robinson and Jim Simmons. Participating from the Fairfax Resolves Chapter were Ken Bonner and Dave Cook with Pat Kelly from the Thomas Jefferson Chapter. Marc Robinson of the Colonel James Wood II Chapter conducted the on line event which was attended by Virginia SAR President Bill Schwetke and representatives from Virginia, Ohio, Texas and West Virginia Societies with 14 SAR Chapters and three DAR Chapters.

Group photo from left to right: Brett Osborn, Eric Robinson, Jim Simmons, Chip Daniel, Dave Cook, Sean Carrigan, Ken Bonner, Jeff Thomas, Paul Christensen and Patt Kelly.

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‘Dolly & Me’ Tea Party hosted by the Front Royal Church of Christ

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On January 9th, the Front Royal Church of Christ held a tea party for six little girls. Jane McCool and Tenia Smith hosted the event, and the girls shared it with their doll babies and special stuffed animals.

The menu included finger sandwiches of ham and cheese with baby spinach leaves, fruit trays, cheese and tomatoes, scones, and mini cupcakes.

The girls made their own Facilitators (Hats) for the tea party. A game was also led by Tenia, called “Freeze”, which included their baby dolls and stuffed animals. Songs were sung with merry hearts from little girls’ voices. And lastly, tea party favors of white gloves and jewelry were given as keepsakes to remember their ‘Dolly & Me’ Tea Party.

Please enjoy some photographs from the special event:

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This week’s showtimes at Royal Cinemas as of January 15th

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Are you looking for the full movie-going experience without having to wait in the long lines that often accompany that experience? Then look no further because Royal Cinemas movie theatre is the answer. Get the whole gang together and enjoy a movie! We are continuing to practice “6 Foot Social Distancing” with 30% capacity reserved seating in all auditoriums.

Here is a list of this week’s showtimes at Royal Cinemas as of Friday, January 15:

• Friday: 7:00
• Sat & Sun: 3:45 & 7:00
• Mon – Thurs: 7:00
Rated PG13  |  Run Time: 2 hour 29 min

• Friday: 7:20
• Sat & Sun: 4:10 & 7:20
• Mon – Thurs: 7:20
Rated PG13  |  Run Time: 1 hour 48 min

• Friday: 7:10
• Sat & Sun: 4:00 & 7:10
• Mon – Thurs: 7:10
Rated PG13  |  Run Time: 1 hour 58 min


Ticket prices are as follows:

  • Adult: $9
  • Child (under 12): $6
  • Military: $7
  • Student (college): $7
  • Senior: $7
  • Matinees, All Seating: $6

COMING SOON:

  • “Cinderella”
  • “Tom and Jerry”
  • “What About Love”
  • “Nobody”
  • “Raya and the Last Dragon”
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Winchester SPCA invites you to purchase a light in support of the Pets for Life program

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The Pets for Life program at the Winchester SPCA invites you to purchase a light on behalf of your pet and help us Light a Path to end pet homelessness. Your donation will help us keep loved pets with their families and out of the overcrowded shelter system.

  • $10 donation for one light
  • $50 donation for 10 lights
  • $100 donation for 20 lights

The lights will be illuminated February 1st in a virtual lighting ceremony.

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