Page 1

The Capitol Steps

p. 19

| Mid-Century Mod Style

p. 41

| Weddings

p. 47



Meatless meals go uptown

our 5

favorite recipes p. 60

due east

VCU Qatar celebrates

15 years

p. 86


Holiday walking the wicklow way p. 64 State of Education Featuring

Virginia’s Top High Schools & Colleges

2013 p. 99

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Experience the masterpieces

Psychologically alluring, investment quality art in Williamsburg, VA

Where visual and culinary arts align

Whether you are visiting for the first time or the hundredth, a visit to the Muscarelle is always an invigorating and unique experience in Williamsburg! From standing in awe of Old Masters like Titian & Velasquez, to soaking in the emotion of abstract expressionists like Goldberg, the Muscarelle offers an array of art from various ages and cultures. The Muscarelle Museum of Art on the campus of The College of William & Mary. Plan your visit today! Image credit: Jacob Lawrence | American, 1917-2000 | Shopping Bags | 1994 | Gouache on paper | Purchase, Gene A. (W&M 1952) and Mary A. Burns Art Acquisition Fund | 1997.115

Linda Matney Gallery - a magnet for established contemporary artists and emerging artists alike – is owned and curated by Lee Matney, an awarding winning photographer and artist. Matney’s experience with collaborative artist exhibits spans the United States, drawing nationwide public and media attention. The gallery also offers art brokerage services and art investment consulting. 5435 Richmond Rd | Williamsburg, VA 23188 | 757-675-6627 |

Connie Desaulniers’ fanciful art surrounds the culinary wizardry of Death by Chocolate author Marcel Desaulniers. The artist designed much of the decor - including the mosaic in the open air kitchen, where bakers make decadent desserts from scratch. Lunch, wine & gifts, too. 204 Armistead Ave | Williamsburg, VA 23185 | 757-645-2995 | | Image credit: Connie Desaulnier | Blueberry Bird | Apoxie Clay, acrylics and other mixed media Photo credit: Lee Matney

Image credit: Kent Knowles | Island





Home to the artwork of contemporary American artist Nancy Thomas

Fine dining amidst sophisticated, contemporary art

Provocative Southern Art

The art of Nancy Thomas is prized throughout the country for its color, warmth and style. Since opening her exquisite and kaleidoscopic gallery in 1983, collectors and enthusiasts have been lured by her paintings, sculptures and accent pieces, as well as her collection of antiques and fine wines.

The ethereal drawings and paintings of French artist Anne Fleury are displayed at artcafé26, where fine food and wine has put this European inspired café on the culinary map. Featured events include a “Meet the Artist” dinner on September 22, 2013, as well as a night of art, music, hors d’oeuvres and wine on September 26 from 5 – 8 p.m.

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Curated by Lee Matney and Tyrus Lytton, the Art House showcases art seldom seen in Virginia. A diverse range of art from the South will be displayed, from traditional paintings to contemporary multimedia art, revealing unexpected connections between different styles and points of view. Stryker Building, 412 N Boundary Street | Williamsburg, VA 23185 | 757-675-6627 | Image credit: Art Rosenbaum | Self Portrait with Fiddle | 2002 | Oil on Linen

August 28 – October 13, 2013

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“Moving to RWC was the greatest gift Dad could give us. He has everything he needs and more.” – Son, Robin Barlowe

“There are so many options around meals and activities. Life is good at RWC.” – RWC Resident, Bob Barlowe

Robin Barlowe and his brothers know Rappahannock Westminster-Cantebury provides a safety net for their active, independent father, Bob Barlowe. “Dad can spend his weekends at the family cabin on the York River and his weekdays at RWC. He doesn’t worry about maintaining a home or meal planning. He travels, spends time with friends and family, and still finds time to chair the RWC Residents’ Association.” To learn more about embracing your life at RWC, call 804-438-4000 today. E mbrace life on your terms. Equal Housing Opportunity © 2013 RWC

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Sentara Norfolk General Hospital is #1 in Virginia.


entara Norfolk General Hospital has been recognized as a #1 hospital in Virginia in the 2013-14 America’s Best Hospitals rankings of U.S. News & World Report. Contributing to the top-hospital ranking, which it shares with VCU Medical Center this year, Sentara Norfolk General Hospital was recognized with 10 “top-performing” programs, including two “nationally ranked” and eight “high-performing.” We’d like to thank our exceptional members of our team, physician partners, and longtime partners at Eastern Virginia Medical School for making this achievement possible. We’re proud to be a resource for consumers looking for high-quality care and advanced programs. After all, it’s not being #1 in the rankings that matters, but being #1 with our patients. For more details, please go to

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Natural Bridge, Virginia • Rockbridge County


The Historic Natural Bridge, 120+ Room Hotel, Natural Bridge Caverns and More - On 1600± Acres

Thursday, November 14 at 2:00 PM — On Site

One of the Natural Wonders of the World, Natural Bridge, is for sale at public auction. Included within the 1,600 acre boundary are The Natural Bridge, Natural Bridge Hotel, Natural Bridge Caverns, Stonewall Cottages and Inn, single family homes, Natural Bridge Gift Shop and Wax Museum. This National Historic Landmark was purchased by Thomas Jefferson from King George, III of England in 1774 and has hosted millions of visitors from around the world. George Washington surveyed The Bridge in 1750 as evidenced by his initials carved into this famous stone arch. The current owners, in their late 80’s, have been stewards of this monument for almost 30 years. It is now time for new owners to take the helm. The property will be offered in various parcels and groupings of any request, up to and including the entire 1600± acres.

The Natural Bridge

The Hotel: 92 guest rooms overlooking the rolling hills of The Shenandoah Valley only minutes from Historic Lexington, Virginia. The beautiful foyer gives way to an elegant dining room and tavern on one side and a spacious conference center on the other. The adjacent annex offers an additional 30 guest rooms. Across from the Hotel is a large parking area that supports the gift ship, wax museum and The Natural Bridge. Over 65,000 square feet are available in the buildings on this parcel. Adjacent to the parking area is the Stonewall Inn and Cottages perched on a gentle knoll and on the hill above, overlooking Cedar Creek. For millions of years the creek carved its way through the Bridge making its way to the James River less than a mile away. The eight cottages feature 36 guest rooms. Near the Hotel complex is the Natural Bridge Caverns with its spectacular rooms and features. It was discovered in the 1800’s but not open to the public until 1977. Natural Bridge Caverns descend 34 stories with exciting twists, turns and beautiful formations, and are the deepest caverns in the eastern United States. The land: 1,600± acres of scenic, rolling farmland and forest surrounds this national treasure and is accessed by miles of state road frontage, including US Highway 11. Hundreds of years ago Natural Bridge was the passage early settlers crossed to make their way westward to new territories. This property has significant conservation easement potential.

Natural Bridge is a multi-million dollar income revenue enterprise. For details and financial information please contact us. The Natural Bridge Caverns


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Ten GreaT VirGinia Chefs and fifTeen GreaT VirGinia Winemakers Together for the First Time!

The VirGinia Wine and OysTer ClassiC Saturday, November 2, 2013 • 11 am – 5 pm On the grounds of The Dog and Oyster Vineyard, Irvington, VA. Hosted by The Hope and Glory Inn



Vineyard Images: Mark Atkinson Styling: Tracy Lee

VirGinia ChefS inClude

A new, one of a kind culinary event featuring wine tastings, oyster pairings, oyster bars, other fine foods, tailgating, and live music.

VirGinia WinemakerS inClude

Todd Gray, Executive Chef and Co-Owner of Washington’s acclaimed Equinox Restaurant and Culinary Director of The Salamander Resort and Spa, Middleburg, Forbes magazine’s #2 of “The 20 Most Highly Anticipated World Hotel Openings in 2013. Walter Bundy, Executive Chef, Lemaire Restaurant, The Jefferson Hotel, Richmond, a perennial Five Star and Five Diamond hotel property. Virginia’s native son and Richmond’s Chef of the Year 2009. Esquire’s food critic John Mariani says “Bundy represents all the traditions of the South”; and, he has made “Lemaire one of the best restaurants in the United States.”

Philip Carter Strother, Philip Carter Winery, Hume. Philip Carter Strother’s 2010 Cleve won a Governor’s Gold this year. The Classic is being held on land once owned by his ancestors, the esteemed Carter family. Ancestor Charles Carter became the first American to successfully grow European vinifera in the US and he also was awarded a Gold Medal in 1762 from The Royal Society in London. Stephen Barnard, Keswick Vineyards, Keswick, has won 2 Governors Cups; and, Keswick Vineyards has received a gold medal every year since first entering the competition in 2003. Other accolades include 1) a double gold medal for their Cabernet at the 2013 San Francisco International Wine Competition, one of only 22 out of over 500 wines; and, 2) the highest scoring Viognier by the Wine Spectator magazine. Stephen was recently named “One of the Top 100 Most Influential Winemakers in the US”.

even more reasons to visit and enjoy the northern neck and Chesapeake Bay region of Virginia during the weekend of The Wine and Oyster Classic The UrBanna OysTer fesTiVal (november 1-2, a 20 minute drive from irvington) and The irVinGTOn farmers markeT (saturday, november 2, 9 am - 1 pm) Voted Best of the Best by Virginia Living readers. (just steps away from the dog and Oyster Vineyard).

Ticket and Tailgate information: or call The Hope and Glory Inn (804) 438-6053 or 800-497-8228 Beneficiaries: • The Animal Welfare League of the Northern Neck & The Richmond SPCA • The Virginia Waterman’s Scholarship Fund

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Con te n ts october 2013

Features 86 VCUQ

VCU was the first of eight elite Western universities to open a branch campus in the Arabian Gulf country of Qatar. We discover why as VCUQ celebrates its 15th anniversary. By Erin parkhurst


Promised land Producing a world-class wine is only half the battle. The tough part, as Rutger de Vink of RdV Vineyards tells us, is convincing the rest of the world that you’ve done it. By caroline kettlewell


state of education A new special supplement featuring Top High Schools & Colleges 2013, a list of nearly 150 of the most innovative programs in the Commonwealth.

On the Cover Rutger de Vink with Sage at RdV Vineyards. photo by m a r k e d w a r d at k i n s o n

Departments 19 | u p f r o n t

photo by mark edward atkinson

The Capitol Steps, green burials, Dominion Derby Girls Boot Camp, Virginia International Raceway’s queen of speed, the National Sporting Library and Museum, mid-century modern style, Bellwether and more!

43 | a b o u t t o w n

Galas and gatherings around the state, supporting art, institutions and charities.

47 | w e d d i n g s

Real weddings from across the Commonwealth.

49 | e v e n t s

51 | p r o f i l e

64 | t r av e l

Virginia Hispanic Chamber of Commerce founder and CEO Michel Zajur helps both Hispanic and non-Hispanic entrepreneurs by connecting business with community.

A 100-kilometer walking holiday on one of Ireland’s most scenic long-distance trails leads the author to the culture-drenched city of Dublin.

By Shannon O’Neill

By Tricia Pearsall

55 | d i n i n g

74 | h o m e

Chef Jacques Haeringer carries on his father’s legacy at L’Auberge Chez François in Great Falls where classically decadent French cuisine is served sans apology. By Lisa Antonelli Bacon

60 | f o o d

Exotic ingredients, global influences and imaginative twists are making vegetarian cuisine as haute as it is hot. Five chefs share recipes for meatless meals with caché.

Falls Church builder Mark Turner wants to change the way you think about green design. Can sustainable still be stylish?

By K athleen Toler

128 | d e pa r t u r e

Celebrating a silver wedding anniversary by experiencing the sensual pleasures of Paris ... one bistro at a time. By Dean King

Our picks for the most interesting goings-on this season.

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CONTENTS_OCT13.indd 13


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E ditor ’ s letter The Awakening Hour Morning at the vineyard brings the promise of possibility.


ook at this gorgeous shot. It was taken by Mark Edward Atkinson, one of our favorite photographers, early the morning of our cover shoot at RdV Vineyards in Delaplane. It was the kind of irresistible Virginia morning when you don’t mind being up before 6 a.m. because in that brilliant light everything just seems so possible, so right, so sure to succeed. I envy the man who lives there—Rutger de Vink, the subject of our story starting on page 90—for waking up to this view every morning, to this daily invitation to do something extraordinary. And de Vink has done something extraordinary. Beneath the verdure we see in the photo is about 18 inches of rock and rubble—and beneath that is solid granite. It’s not exactly prime farmland, certainly not by Virginia standards. But it is this land’s very unsuitability for anything else that has made it so perfect for de Vink. The success of his wines hinges on something that seems counterintuitive—the soil’s inability to hold water for very long. The result is wine that has earned de Vink, a former Marine officer and corporate foot soldier, hearty approbation from some of the industry’s heavy hitters (who have suggested that his wines are on par with wine from Napa and even the hallowed estates of Bordeaux). De Vink has become something of a second-career wunderkind in the wine world, but the story doesn’t end there; in fact, that’s where we were keen to begin. What happens next? Yes, de Vink has produced a great wine, but has the world embraced it? Does his opening night come with a standing ovation? Caroline Kettlewell very deftly expresses the story of this winemaker’s quest not only to make a great American wine, but also to get the rest of the world to think so, too. Innovation. Pushing boundaries. De Vink is doing it, and so are some other folks whose stories we bring you in this issue. Fifteen years ago, then Dean of VCU School of the Arts Richard Toscan seized an opportunity to open a branch campus in the Arabian Gulf country of Qatar—VCUQ. But why? And how? I spoke to Toscan, and to many from VCUarts and VCUQ to learn how the Richmond-based university landed in what seemed at the time the most unlikely of places. Toscan had the prescience to know that taking this leap could propel VCUarts forward, and it did. The move helped VCUarts become one of the top five-ranked art and design schools in the country (page 86). Our home story is also about someone who is looking forward and taking a risk—Mark Turner of GreenSpur, a design-build firm in Great Falls. Turner has constructed a home in Fauquier County—he calls it the One Nest Project—that is both sustainable and stylish, descriptors that are not often paired together. He

envisions a revolution in home construction that may make more of us eager to embrace green design (page 74). Innovation is a word that has been used a lot lately around here as we wrap up a months-long project to identify the state’s most innovative education programs for a new special supplement we are delighted to present this month—Virginia Living State of Education. In it, we feature Top High Schools & Colleges 2013, a list of almost 150 programs around the state that we think are introducing students to new ways of thinking. From Emory & Henry’s new Semester-A Trail (as in Appalachian Trail) to Norfolk Academyˇs medical externship program and Loudoun County Public Schoolˇs partnership with Singapore’s Hwa Chong Institution, these schools have a strong desire to help their students discover not just what is, but what is possible. Of course there is more—a lot more—in this issue, including an homage to vegetarian cuisine, which has of late been elevated to the level of haute (page 60), an interview with Virginia Hispanic Chamber of Commerce founder and CEO Michel Zajur (page 51), and a walking holiday in Ireland (page 64) that deposits the intrepid Tricia Pearsall in Dublin for a good soak in Irish history and culture. I hope you enjoy it. Erin Parkhurst, Editor

Write to us!

Coming Soon! second annual

Letters to the Editor

photo by mark edward atkinson

Made in Virginia Awards Tell us about your favorite Virginia-made products from sports and style to food, drink and home—and everything in between—and one of them just may win a spot on our second annual list of the Old Dominion’s best products! We are looking for the kinds of products that make us all proud to be Virginians, designed and manufactured right here in the Commonwealth. Post your favorites on Facebook, tweet them at us, or email your suggestion to If you’re a producer of a quality item made in Virginia, send us a sample! Nothing can convince us better than seeing, feeling and maybe tasting (yum) the real deal. No entry fee required, just a great product. Mail to: Virginia Living Made in Virginia, 109 E. Cary St., Richmond, VA 23219. We’ll take it from there. Look for Made in Virginia Award winners in our December issue, on newsstands in November! o cto b e r 2 0 1 3

EDITOR LETTER_OCT13_revised.indd 15


We love receiving letters and emails from Virginia Living readers and hearing your reactions to our stories. Don’t keep your thoughts to yourself! Write them down, or type them up instead! Email us at Editor@CapeFear. com or write to us at Letters to the Editor, Cape Fear Publishing, 109 E. Cary St., Richmond, VA 23219. Please include your name, address, phone number and city of residence. Letters may be edited for length and clarity. For subscriptions, see our website, VirginiaLiving. com. Kindly address all other editorial queries to

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8/23/13 12:42 PM

2013–2014 Inaugural Season


new perspectives

Grand Opening Week of Events, October 28–November 3 including Inaugural Performance, Philip Glass Ensemble, Friday, November 1

Single tickets and packages available now

The Center for the Arts at Virginia Tech Grand Opening Week is sponsored by

190 Alumni Mall, Blacksburg, VA Box Office: 540-231-5300

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8/22/13 3:08 PM


VOLUME 11, NUMBER 6 October 2013 Published by

Cape Fear Publishing Company

109 East Cary Street, Richmond, Virginia 23219 Telephone (804) 343-7539, Facsimile (804) 649-0306

Joe Tennis


Virginia Beach native Joe Tennis has been a regular contributor to Virginia Living since 2009. A Radford University graduate, Tennis is the author of seven books, including Beach to Bluegrass (The Overmountain Press, 2007), which inspired the title of Virginia’s planned Beaches to Bluegrass Trail, along the U.S. Highway 58 corridor. Tennis’ latest book is Washington County, Virginia: Then & Now (Arcadia Publishing, 2012), which features Emory & Henry College and the Virginia Creeper Trail.

John-Lawrence Smith EDITORIAL STAFF editor Erin Parkhurst Art Director Sonda Andersson Pappan associate editor Daryl Grove assistant editor Lisa Antonelli Bacon assistant editor special projects Christine Stoddard assistant art director Megan Mullsteff


Bland Crowder, Bill Glose, Don Harrison, Caroline Kettlewell, Dean King, Sarah Sargent CONTRIBUTING writers

Patricia Held, Greg A. Lohr, Shannon O'Neill, Tricia Pearsall, Ben Swenson, Joe Tennis, Kathleen Toler, Joan Tupponce CONTRIBUTING photographers

Mark Edward Atkinson, Ash Daniel, David Deal, Adam Ewing, Issac Harrell, Ken Wyler CONTRIBUTING illustrators

Gary Hovland, Chris Gall, Robert Meganck editorial interns

Marie Albiges, Andrew Stoddard, Beth Wertz art interns

Cabell Edmunds, Meredith West Advertising executives

Caroline Kettlewell

Caroline Kettlewell is a freelance writer and the author of two books of critically praised narrative nonfiction, Skin Game (St. Martin’s Press, 2000) and Electric Dreams (Capo Press, 2006). She writes on a wide range of topics, and particularly enjoys stories that combine her interests in the natural world and consuming passions. She is Virginia Living’s regular Natives columnist, exploring the delightful diversity of Virginia’s flora and fauna.

central virginia

sales MANAGER Torrey Munford

(804) 343-0782,

Christiana Roberts

(804) 622-2602,

eastern virginia

Thomas Durrer

(804) 622-2614,

Bill Glose

Mary Evans Callahan

For the past 10 years, Bill Glose has written the Books page and other articles for Virginia Living. His second book of poetry, Half a Man, to be released in October, features poems about his experience as a paratrooper and Gulf War veteran. He is also the author of the poetry collection, The Human Touch (San Francisco Bay Press, 2007), and short story anthology Ten Twisted Tales (San Francisco Bay Press, 2008).

(804) 622-2605,

Northern Virginia

Haley Bien

(804) 622-2603,

western virginia

Heather McKinney

(804) 622-2611,


OFFICE MANAGER Maria Harwood chief financial officer Tom Kozusko Creative Services director Kenny Kane Creative Services Assistant Joseph Wharton circulation manager Kim Benson Web editor Daryl Grove event SPONSORSHIPS Kim Benson Groundskeeper Melwood Whitlock Activities & Morale Director Cutty Assistant Activities & Morale Director Rex


We welcome calendar items; to ensure consideration, printed copies of information must be sent four months before publication via U.S. Mail to our Editor at the above address.

Don’t forget, you can find even more Virginia Living online!


Send address changes to VIRGINIA LIVING 109 East Cary St., Richmond, VA 23219


One year - $24, two years - $40. Send to 109 East Cary St., Richmond, VA 23219 or


Back issues are available for most editions and are $9.95 plus $5 shipping and handling. Please call for availability.

REPRINTS & REPRODUCTION PERMISSION Contact John-Lawrence Smith, Publisher, at (804) 343-7539 or


Virginia Living is a registered trademark of Cape Fear Publishing Company, Inc. Copyright 2008, all rights reserved. Reproduction without written permission from the publisher is strictly prohibited.


(USPS) ISSN 1534-9984 VirginiaLiving is published bimonthly by Cape Fear Publishing Company, 109 East Cary St., Richmond, VA 23219. Periodical postage permit 021-875 at Richmond, VA.

Visit our website at for bonus images from stories in this issue. You’ll find more of Mark Edward Atkinson’s photography from Rutger de Vink’s magnificent RdV Vineyards and more of Ken Wyler’s images of Mark Turner’s revolutionary 1,100-square-foot home—the One Nest Project. We also take a closer look at VCU’s branch campus in Dohar, Qatar, and see more from international art and design conference Tasmeem, hosted by VCUQ this spring.

O cto b e r 2 0 1 3

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We also encourage you to connect with us via social media. Find us on Facebook, Twitter and Pinterest to see all the latest from Virginia Living, including exciting and exclusive giveaways and contests.

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8/23/13 12:54 PM

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October 12 & 13

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UpFro n t odd dominion

cat obsession |


mid-century mod |


national sporting library & museum

Capitol Comedy

by Greg A. Lohr

The Capitol Steps tackle the nation’s political problems one nonpartisan poke at a time.

Photography by

David Deal

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Hull Street 804-321-0470 6710 Hull Street at Chippenham

Remodeling A Pre-1978 Home? Attention: Homeowners

Federal law requires contractors that disturb painted surfaces in homes, child care facilities, and schools built before 1978 to be certified and follow specific work practices to prevent lead contamination. Always ask to see your contractor’s certification. The contractor must provide a copy of the RENOVATE RIGHT pamphlet before starting work. To learn more about the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) Lead Renovation, Repair, and Painting Rule (RRP) call the National Lead Information Center toll-free 1-800-424-LEAD (5323) or go to: Common renovation activities like sanding, cutting, and demolition can create hazardous lead dust and chips by disturbing lead-based paint, which can be harmful to children and adults. Make sure lead-safe work practices are listed in your contract, and if lead abatement is performed, check with the Department of Professional and Occupational Regulation to verify licensure at or call (804) 367-8595. For more information, please visit the Virginia Department of Health, Lead-Safe Virginia Program at Please have your children tested for lead exposure.

8/17/13 5:07 PM

UpFront Virginia’s gubernatorial candidates are fortunate that the Capitol Steps reserve their satirical barbs

place 90 minutes before showtime each Friday night. “It’s a fast turnaround business,” Eaton says. Newton goes further: “It’s very terrifying for the first couple of years in the group. Then they get used to it. People ask us if our show is improvised. I say, ‘Not if we remember the words!’” William Biddle can attest to the fact that jokes about national news and politicians go over well outside D.C. He is executive director of the Ferguson Center for the Arts at Christopher Newport University in Newport News, where the Capitol Steps are slated to perform Nov. 2—for the third time in nine seasons. “Each year on surveys,” Biddle says, “people ask us to bring them back.” (In a small-world connection, the Steps’ Eaton worked in the 1980s for then-Senator Paul Trible Jr., now president of CNU.) It’s anybody’s guess which politicians and events will make headlines this fall and provide fodder for the Steps. At a summer show, jokes about disgraced New York City mayoral candidate Anthony Weiner were a given,

for federal politicians and national news. Otherwise, Messrs. McAuliffe and Cuccinelli would be ripe for skewering when the renowned comedy troupe brings its successful brand of satire from Washington, D.C., to the Commonwealth this fall with two performances leading up to the Nov. 5 election. Consider, for instance, how the Steps handled various topics-du-jour during one of its regular weekend shows in the District this summer. Performances are as low-tech as they are fast-paced. Backed by a lone keyboardist, and with no real scenery to speak of, five of the troupe’s 31 members took turns singing songs and donning silly costumes to the delight of a clearly appreciative audience at the Ronald Reagan Building and International Trade Center. Impersonations ranged from British royals and a Somalian pirate to a National Security Agency official dressed in a dark suit, sunglasses and a head-mounted “satellite dish” that had been hastily, cheekily fashioned from a stainless steel vegetable steamer. Familiar melodies and stinging one-liners abounded. Leave it to the Steps to find fun beneath serious issues such as domestic surveillance, immigration reform, the sluggish economy and the unpredictable leadership of North Korea. In an early sketch, unnamed Republican members of Congress debate how to boost their appeal among women and minorities to the tune of the “Battle Hymn of the Republic.” Unable to decide, they state the obvious: “Let’s deny Barack a third term. That’s something we could win!” They’re replaced onstage by President Obama, who says people often ask him how to start a small business in a down economy. “And here’s your answer: You start a big business ... and you wait.” (Guffaws follow.) Then an Al Jazeera network executive announces “big plans to expand our audience of American infidels.” The network’s sitcoms, he quips, soon will include Allah in the Family, Everybody Loves Ramadan and How I Met Your Mullah. Whether you’re laughing or groaning, rest assured this Previous page: Elaina Newton. Above: Mike Tilford as Pope Francis, Mike Thornton as Hugh Jim has been the Steps’ tongue-in-cheek, irreverently nonBecile, Mike Carruthers as the late Kim Jong II, Morgan Duncan as President Obama, Janet Gordon partisan approach toward current events since the group explaining the facets of Obamacare, Newton as herself. was formed in December 1981 by three Capitol Hill senatorial staffers—Elaina Newton, Jim Aidala and the late as was a monologue by a gumshoe-style private Bill Strauss, who died in 2007. These days, many of the group’s members Thank you detective hired to track down NSA whistleblower boast prior experience in theater, improvisational comedy or music compoEdward Snowden. The recession has been rough, sition. Far from remaining an “inside the Beltway” phenomenon, the group very much, the detective complained. “I’ve been working less now performs around the country and has been featured on national TV Capitol Steps. than Paula Deen during Black History Month.” and radio shows, including Good Morning America, Nightline and National The same show poked fun at Vice President Joe Public Radio’s All Things Considered. Based in Alexandria, the group also Now you're all Biden for a tendency to say too much, too soon. has released dozens of albums (its latest is Fiscal Shades of Gray) and performed for five U.S. presidents (Ford, Clinton, Reagan and both Bushes). under arrest.” Wielding a fake guitar, he was joined onstage by House of Representatives Minority Leader Nancy Reagan, always the showman, cracked the group up when he joined them Pelosi, and “Mr. Excitement,” Sen. Harry Reid of Nevada. To laughter and onstage following their performance and said, “Thank you very much, applause, the unlikely trio reworked Lyin’ Eyes by the Eagles into Ain’t No Capitol Steps. Now you’re all under arrest.” Way to Hide This Biden Guy. Longtime Steps fan Jan Du Plain gushed about the group moments Politicians rarely complain about being the butt of the Steps’ jokes, before a recent show at the Reagan Building. “It’s such a brilliant concept,” Newton says. They’ve been more often aggravated when they’re not says Du Plain, president and CEO of Falls Church-based public relations featured in a song. firm Du Plain Enterprises. “If they hadn’t done it, it would have had to be “A lot of these guys invite us to perform or have, over the years, come to done, because we need laughter in the nation’s capital.” shows,” she adds. “I think they realize having a sense of humor is imporPossibly even more impressive than the Steps’ live performances is how tant with voters.” ❉ quickly the group prepares and memorizes new material. Early each week, Newton, one of the troupe’s founding members, brainThe Capitol Steps perform Friday and Saturday nights at the Ronald Reagan storms with Mark Eaton, who joined the Steps in 1993, to write new lyrics Building and International Trade Center in Washington, D.C. They will to hit pop songs and old standards. They email the lyrics to the rest of the perform in Virginia at the Cultural Arts Center of Glen Allen Sept. 7 and at troupe on Wednesday afternoon. the Ferguson Center for the Arts in Newport News Nov. 2. For a complete “I’ll say, ‘Here are the words. Do you know the tune? If not, look it up performance schedule, go to on YouTube,’” Newton explains. The troupe’s only full rehearsal takes

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UpFront n at i v e s | by caroline kettlewell

experience you will not likely soon forget. It starts unassumingly enough, typically with no more than a pinprick sensation. Within a halfhour to a few hours, however, symptoms, which can last for up to a couple of days, develop. Victims commonly suffer severe abdominal pain and cramping, but also possibly cramping of other large muscle groups such as the back, chest, legs and shoulders, along with other assorted unpleasantries like nausea, vomiting, profuse sweating, headache, increased blood pressure and—not surprisingly—anxiety. Widow spiders belong to the genus Latrodectus, and collectively these symptoms are known as “latrodectism.” On the bright side, then, take comfort in the fact that black widow bites aren’t all that common, don’t always produce symptoms and very rarely prove fatal. Interestingly, we can thank modern plumbing for a decline in the frequency of black widow bites. Apparently, in the days when the outhouse was a common domestic feature, widow spiders found that the cozy space beneath the seat suited them ideally, and were inclined to take offense when bare parts disturbed their tranquility. Black widows belong to the family Theridiidae, also known as the “cob weaver” or “cob web” family, and to insert an etymological note into this entomological narrative, the word “cob” is derived from for “spider,” in A single female “coppe” turn derived from the Old English “attercoppe,” can produce meaning literally “poison between four head.” Widow webs are indeed cobwebby, and not and nine egg particular works of beauty sacs in a single (one website refers to them dismissively as “often summer.” tangled and grubby”), but it is there that the black widow lays her eggs in spherical sacs, several hundred to a sac. The Virginia Cooperative Extension’s Widow Spiders publication notes that, “A single female can produce between four and nine egg sacs in a single summer,” a fact you may not want to dwell upon too closely before bedtime. It should be noted that not just the egg detail, but everything else you’ve read here applies almost exclusively to the female black widow. Remember when Liz Taylor married device, black widows are, so the bug experts Larry Fortensky? So it is with the black widow tell us, actually quite timid and non-aggressive. spider—all the glamour and reputation are hers, Although their fondness for nesting in dark, and he is but the bit player in the shadows of undisturbed places can lead them to our the limelight. woodpiles and sheds, our garages and attics, And speaking of “bit,” it’s time to clear up and that pair of work boots in the mud room a bit of a misconception, the most common that you haven’t put on since last fall, still, when misconception, in fact the misconception that threatened, widow spiders are more likely to earned the widow spider its familiar—and prefer retreat over engagement, unless you come undeserved—name: that the black widow female into direct physical contact with them (say, by always kills and eats her mate. Alas, for the putting your foot in that work boot). metaphor that launched a thousand noir novels, And about that bite. Here, it seems, Mother she doesn’t, at least not always. Nature has gone in for a serious case of overkill. Which isn’t to say that she’s exactly June Why does a creature that could fit in a thimble, Cleaver; Mr. Widow is wise to beat a measured whose diet consists generally of small insects retreat before love’s passion cools, because if he that blunder into its web, come equipped with a hangs around long enough, she may figure what neurotoxin so potent that it can reduce a grown the hell, he does kind of look like dinner. human to a writhing heap of agony? When it comes to encountering the black Should you be so unfortunate as to suffer a widow, respect always beats regret. ❉ black widow spider bite in all its glory, it is an


mommie dearest

It’s time to rethink the black widow’s lethal reputation.

illustration by robert meganck


ity the poor black widow spider.

No, really, do. True, she can deliver a nasty bite that could—though it probably won’t— kill you. But putting aside this minor point, she’s really just a quiet, retiring, hard-working mom, trying to give her spiderlings a good start in life. It’s not like she wants to bite you. And that whole man-killer reputation? Mostly a bum rap. So, you know, cut her some slack, OK? Let us instead consider her excellent qualities. You have to hand it to her on style points. There are several widow-spider species in the U.S., but the Southern black widow is the glamour girl of the bunch. In glossy, alwaysfashionable black with long spindly legs and a striking, red, hourglass-shaped accent on her abdomen, she’s the creepy-crawlingest standout in the world of eight-legged arthropods. And though the arachnid is armed with the biochemical equivalent of a thermonuclear

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UpFront MEAT-JUICE MADNESS The house that meat juice built is about to reopen.

valentine’s meat juice took the world

by storm in the late-19th century, earning the Valentine family a fortune large enough to found a museum. Now the Valentine Richmond History Center has reopened the exhibit that explains its origins, Creating History: The Valentine Family and Museum, in Wickham House. Unlike other meat extracts, processed by boiling or roasting, the Valentine’s concoction, first produced in Richmond in 1871, was made using mechanical compression and low heat to render from meat what is described on the label of its distinctive brown bottle as “the germ of life.” VMJ was promoted to assuage a plethora of problems, from la grippe to TB to

ghoulish pursuits

What makes these bottles so desirable? An 1850 law required bottles containing poison to have distinguishing characteristics: they had to be identifiable in the dark as well as by the illiterate to prevent their contents from being consumed. As a result, poison bottles are among the most intricate of all antique bottles, manufactured in striking colors such as cobalt blue, amber and emerald, and fashioned into unusual shapes and textured with latticework, ridges, dots and diamonds. “Each of them is different,” says Cabaniss. “And they are all old because they stopped making these bottles in the 1930s,” when the elaborate safety requirements ended. Cabaniss keeps her bottles, including both skull and coffin-shaped sets, in the ideal cabinet—an old wooden casket (it was never used for its intended purpose). “The skull is one of the most desirable of all the poison bottles,” says Cabaniss. “All of my cabinets are locked because some of the bottles in my collection still contain the actual poisons.” These poisons include antiseptics, insecticides, vermin poisons and cleaning compounds. If you are looking to start your own skull-andcrossbones collection, the Richmond Area Bottle Collectors Association, which has been active since 1970, will stage its show Oct. 5 at Chesterfield County Fair Grounds. After all, one man’s poison is another man’s treasure.

ta k e n o t e |

Poison bottles (c. 1894) from the collection of Joan Cabaniss.

Pick Your Poison

top right photo courtesy of cook collection, valentine richmond history center. illustration by megan mullsteff


A delightfully dangerous collection. oan cabaniss is dead serious about

antique poison bottles. The editor of the Antique Poison Bottle Collectors Association Newsletter, Cabaniss has collected the ornate toxin containers for 33 years and amassed a collection of over 500 at her home on Smith Mountain Lake. Her interest was first piqued when she spotted a clear glass medicine bottle at a dump site in Northern Virginia. Then she saw eight cobalt blue bottles lined up with the sun pouring through at the Hillsville Flea Market in Carroll County: “I thought that was the prettiest thing I ever saw,” says Cabaniss, who purchased the set on the spot. She now travels the country to antique shops, flea markets, old drugstores and bottle shows gathering up her poisonous prizes.

—By Patricia Held

Do You Recycle?

While the tab for a conventional funeral can run as high as $10,000, green burials hover around half that amount. There’s no requirement for a vault ($1,200 and up) or a grave liner (around $1,000), according to Kathleen Zimmer, a funeral director for Hill & Wood, a Charlottesville funeral home and one of four in Virginia certified by the Green Burial Council to perform green burials. Caskets and embalming are other major costs. If you don’t mind being laid to rest in the likes of a cake box, for instance, you can pay well under $100 for a cardboard casket. That costly embalming process that allows distant loved ones time to arrive for one last look? Dry ice or a cooler will keep you recognizable for three to four days. (Really.) And those pricey headstones? Green cemeteries limit grave

Green burials provide an ecologically sound exit strategy. Forget the bunting. Forget your

favorite dress. Heck, you can even forgo the lipstick. You’ll only be in the ground as long as it takes for your body to become the ultimate recyclable material, now that green burials are a safe, socially acceptable alternative to a frilly send-off. A green burial—one that doesn’t inhibit decomposition—raises the bar for the ecologically conscious, who now have the option of covering themselves in some dirt and waiting for their bodies to be broken down and reabsorbed by the earth, leaving nary a footprint. Done. Gone. Hopefully not forgotten.

Green burials are gaining in popularity even among the ecologically challenged because they bypass the costliness of more traditional burial procedures by passing up some of the finer things in, um, life, like blooming biers or caskets as secure as Fort Knox. According to published reports, between 30 and 40 green cemeteries have sprouted in the U.S., while a decade ago, there were but a handful. And Bloomberg Businessweek reports that, in 2011, more than 300 funeral homes in 40 states were offering green burial services, up from a mere dozen in 2008.

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typhoid. But, in 1909, the American Medical Association declared VMJ to be no more effective than any other meat extract, whose salutary effects were merely nutritional. Still, Richmonders remained enthusiastic. The men-only Commonwealth Club used it as the secret ingredient in its Bloody Marys right up until Valentine’s shut down production in the mid1950s.

markers to native fieldstones, shrubs or trees. (Virginia’s only Green Burial Council-approved cemetery, Duck Run Cemetery in Penn Laird, allows only fieldstones.) Primitive, you say? Au contraire. Some green cemeteries use GPS coordinates to locate resting places. So before you set up that big-ticket burial account, consider going green. Then put away your checkbook, and stop worrying about how you will look for the viewing. Trust me. You won’t care. —By Lisa Antonelli Bacon

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UpFront ta k e n o t e |

Belle of the Battlefield Outfitting hardcore reenactors for nearly 20 years.

top left photo by travis david warley. bottom photo by laura esterman

dispatches from the field


enny indajani hanes may just be

the best in the business when it comes to recreating Civil War uniforms. The 39-year-old was studying architecture in her native Indonesia in the 1990s when her parents, concerned about social unrest, sent her to the U.S. She started out bussing tables in a Chinese restaurant, then became a waitress, but, wanting to get away from long 12-hour work days on her feet, she decided to look for another job. “I could sew,” says Hanes. “I found a small alterations shop and became a seamstress there.” Hanes’ husband at the time was a Civil War reenactor, and she used her sewing skills to make him a uniform, which she also showed to a more experienced reenactor for feedback. “It received positive results,” she says. “So I made another one and sold it on eBay the first

day. I thought, ‘Maybe I can make a living doing this.’” So in 1994, Hanes founded Richmond Depot, a telephone- and mail-order (now online) store selling her carefully recreated historical clothing, made from her Midlothian home. It takes Hanes about 27 hours to make a basic soldier’s uniform consisting of a kepi, or hat ($95$165), a jacket ($280-$530) and trousers ($170-$220). The interior and exterior stitches are done by hand with seven to nine stitches per inch, which is Fenny Hanes the same as many of with one of her Civil War uniform the original period recreations. garments on display at museums. An officer’s uniform takes more time to recreate because there are more details. And to a campaigning reenactor of 1861-1865 American history, it is all about the details. “I had to study the uniforms at the Museum of the Confederacy and at other museums in both the Carolinas and Gettysburg,” says Hanes. She studied the stitching on the clothing and learned what fabrics were available during the war—and when they were used—because experienced reenactors know, and new reenactors expected her to know. “I order my fabric from a small mill here in the United States that makes it to my specifications,” says Hanes. “There are at least four different fabrics that were worn by the Confederate soldiers that I must keep in stock.” But it’s all worth it to keep Hanes’ customers happy. “She is simply the best there is at recreating Civil War clothing,” says Scott Williams, a 10-year veteran of Civil War reenactments who will participate in the reenactment of the Battle of Cedar Creek at Middletown, Oct. 19-20, in a uniform made by Hanes. “It is as close to the real thing as you can get, and it lasts forever. Which is a good thing, because this is not a cheap hobby!” —By Clarke C. Jones

Save the Date! The ‘Rivah’ looks forward to the new Virginia Wine & Oyster Classic. They were as classically Virginian in the 18th century as they are now: wine and oysters. Three hundred years later, we’re still celebrating this practically perfect pair. And this fall, Irvington’s Hope & Glory Inn is spearheading a new event that will help you do it in high style. Mark your calendar for Nov. 2. That’s when some of Virginia’s best chefs, including Walter Bundy from Richmond’s Lemaire and Tarver King from the Ashby Inn in Paris, will meet up with some of the state’s top winemakers—including Philip Carter Strother of Philip Carter Winery and Stephen Barnard of Keswick Vineyards in Keswick—at the Dog and Oyster Winery for the first Virginia Wine and Oyster Classic. Ticket prices vary: General admission to the vineyard, where you can purchase wine-tasting tickets is $20; a wine-tasting package that includes 10 wine-tasting tickets is $30; a tailgate ticket is $100 (all guests with vehicle must also purchase general admission or wine-tasting admission); and finally, a VIP table ticket is $375 and includes seating and wine-tasting tickets for eight. Prices go up the day of the event, so buy ahead. Bags of oysters will be available to take home or for tailgating onsite. All food is sold separately. Organizer Dudley Patteson says tailgaters are welcome to bring grills. Chin chin, and down the hatch. or 804-438-6053 —By Lisa Antonelli Bacon

Turn Left, Now Go Right… There is nothing sheepish about these pups. It is said that the greatest bond is between a dog and its owner. But what about the bond between a dog, its owner and the sheep they herd? Live-action sheep herding makes its way to Middletown’s historic Belle Grove Plantation Oct. 8-13 when the 2013 National Sheepdog Finals will determine the best working sheepdog and handler team in the U.S. and Canada.

Dog sport, police dog demonstrations and other educational presentations will take place during the five-day event along with tours of Belle Grove Plantation (c. 1797) and nearby Cedar Creek Battlefield. Approximately 150 handlers and their dogs will be tested on their ability to move a flock of sheep through a designated course and into a fenced pen. “It’s a thrill to watch a dog that is

o cto b e r 2 0 1 3



bred to work do what instinct tells it to do,” says Susan Rhoades, a Berryville sheepdog trainer who has competed in several trials. Win or lose, while the rest of us are wheedling, coercing and cajoling our recalcitrant canines into the rain for a pit stop, these dogs are models of wordless communication. —By Marie Albiges

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Virginia wine is about to get another

celebrity thumbs up. Oz Clarke, possibly Britain’s most famous wine expert, familiar to millions through BBC television shows like Food and Drink and Oz and James Drink to Britain, is crossing the pond to be keynote speaker at the 2013 Virginia Wine Summit in Richmond this October. Clarke follows in the footsteps of compatriot Steven Spurrier, who spoke at the inaugural event last year and

Queen of Speed

on track

Old Dominion wines to be celebrated at the Virginia Wine Summit.

ta k e n o t e |

Tannin Salon

How one racy woman took Virginia International Raceway from cow pasture to premier motorsports resort.

top left photo by dan vaden, top right photo courtesy of jay paul and virginia wine board marketing office, bottom photo by mike amalfitano


e thought if we could get a track

that was built when sex was safe and racing was dangerous that it would have a lot more character and a lot more history,” says Virginia International Raceway co-founder and Martinsville native Connie Nyholm of her decision to re-open the then-defunct racetrack in 1988 with business partner Harvey Siegel. Nyholm, who had built a successful real estate company in New York before returning to Southside Virginia, had never set foot on a racetrack nor even seen a race before surveying VIR’s 1,200-acre lot, which had become a weed-infested eyesore since the track’s closure in 1974. But her real estate developer’s instinct kicked in, and she saw that they could not only turn the spot into a premier racing destination, but also a luxurious resort. “We’ve done most of everything we’ve envisioned and then some,” says Nyholm, 54. Then some includes two high-tech automotive laboratories built onsite by Virginia Tech and General Motors. The rest—two hotels, villas, children’s play area, restaurant, skeet range and luxurious spa—were part of Nyholm’s original vision for the property. “We built it as an all-

inclusive resort, but we built it around race courses instead of golf courses.” VIR’s “long straights, elevation changes, and a combination of slow, fast, and, scary-fast corners test a car’s capabilities better than any other track in North America,” according to Car and Driver magazine. This fall, VIR will host numerous events, including the Heacock Classic Gold Cup (Sept. 27-29) and the American Le Mans Series (Oct. 2-5). VIR features six different road course configurations, and cars will often run on two courses at the same time. “Fans can actually go down to where the big rigs are parked, and watch the crews and be close to the drivers right there in the paddock and garage area,” says Nyholm. If you go, bring lawn chairs and walking shoes. Bleachers are provided, but seating is unassigned. Tailgating is encouraged, but if you're after a more posh place to sate your race day appetite, Connie’s Pub at the property’s Oak Tree Tavern hotel may be the spot for you. How does it feel to have a pub named after you? “Well, I am their best customer,” says Nyholm, “so it’s pretty fine.” —By Bill Glose

Ready to Roll? Virginia Beach roller derby team is hungry for Fresh Meat. So you thought roller derby disap-

peared when the 1970s ended? Think again. Roller derby never died, and today it’s going strong with a flat track and a less-bruising set of rules. Twenty-one leagues in Virginia “whip it,” “jam” and “block” in this full-contact sport, which has gained such popularity that it is under consideration for the 2020 Olympics. “There’s no other sport like it,” says referee Rob Putz, 50, of Virginia Beach. “You blow a whistle, and the action keeps

going. In football, you throw a flag, and everyone stands around. Not here.” And the state’s oldest team, Virginia Beach’s Dominion Derby Girls, founded in 2006, is looking for a few good women. DDG hosts a Fresh Meat Program and Boot Camp several times each year in which any adult female—with health insurance, that is—can try out for the team. If they are brave enough. “We get some girls who have never skated before,” says Tabatha Anger, 44,

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of Norfolk, whose derby name is Holly Go Bite Me. “All that matters is the attitude you bring and how well you listen and do as asked so that you can learn the correct skills. Your determination helps a lot with improving your play.” In boot camp, new players are trained to pass a minimum skills requirement, which includes a written test on the rules. “You learn the basics,” says Sarah Whisman (aka Speed Stick), 36, of Virginia Beach, “like how to fall down, different kinds of stops, things like that. All of that without having any kind of contact. In the beginning, there’s no hitting at all.” That comes later when girls split into teams and play fullcontact scrimmages. Then

organized a blind tasting in which the Old Dominion’s fermented grapes crushed competition from around the world. Clarke, who was personally invited to speak by first lady Maureen McDonnell during the governor’s 2012 trade tour to the U.K., will set the tone for the two-day event, which has a wine-filled opening reception Oct. 27 at the VMFA’s Amuse Restaurant, followed by a full day of speakers, tastings and seminars at the Jefferson Hotel, Oct. 28. Tickets are $250 for members of the food and wine industry, $350 for the general public. Around 250 attendees are expected. —By Daryl Grove

you can bet there will be plenty of hitting. The DDG’s schedule runs February through November, and the nonprofit organization donates both time and money to charitable causes around Hampton Roads. The next Fresh Meat Program begins in October, so skate over to and sign up ... if you think you’ve got what it takes. —By Bill Glose

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The teetotaling attendees at the convention of the Woman’s Christian Temperance Union of Accomack and Northampton counties pass a resolution to “move forward with firmer faith and renewed energy to ‘possess the land,’” quotes Accomac’s Peninsula Enterprise. Championing legislated prohibition, they demand that Virginia “forever” bar the manufacture and sale of “intoxicating liquor.” An editorial in the same edition of the Enterprise is a screed against suffrage in “the home of Washington and Jefferson.” Perhaps the editor, certainly less lovely, is also less temperate than these prohibitive ladies.

odd dominion

Stumping for a Dry Shore

Chilling on His Mower

A Passel of Pesky Paws Cat obsession causes civic unrest.

illustration by gary hovland


ven facebook-deniers know the social

networking service is 95 percent about cats. People have one cat to keep them company, two cats so they can keep each other company, three because they didn’t want to break up a litter, four .… well, these folks escalate, from cat owner to cat person and finally to crazy cat person, sometimes further. In 1988, the fur was flying in Chesterfield County as some residents carped to the board of supervisors about their multi-catted neighbors, charging that their excessive number of felines was not just pesky, but downright destructive. “One of the complaints involves a whole lot of cats,” said Supervisor Maurice Sullivan, representing Midlothian District, “more than a dozen.” Chesterfield had a law limiting to three the number of dogs allowed per household but put no ceiling on cats. The supervisors were considering one. In an article about this “Noah’s ark” proposal, the Chesterfield Gazette recalled the board’s attempt the year before to pass the “now-famous chicken ordinance,” under which owners would have had to pay a fine for poultry-perpetrated damage to neighbors’ property. The biddy bill laid an egg, but the cat issue seemed to have more oomph, so the supervisors scheduled a public hearing in September. Harry Daniel, of Dale District, expected the hearing to be both “interesting” and helpful. Some of his best friends were cat owners, but things do sometimes get out of hand, he admitted. Not surprisingly, Jesse Mayes, author of the anti-chicken ordinance, was all for cat limits. “A neighbor has a right,” he said.

And such neighbors were seeking to codify that right. “Most people have agreed, you have to do something,” Sullivan said. His proposed ordinance, which did not pass, would have allowed a household to possess five or six cats, or more with a permit. While it’s hard to imagine living with 12 felines, “a person could have 100,” Sullivan said. Yes, they could, and do. And, of course, today there’s a buzzword for this: animal hoarding. Too often, this boils down to animal abuse, despite intentions that are usually good. Two years ago, Fairfax County animal-control officers removed more than 160 cats from an Annandale house after neighbors complained about the stench, D.C.’s CBS affiliate WUSA reported on its website. At first, the two cat ladies simply offered a haven to rescues, and on weekends, they’d take their charges to a pet store to try to get people to adopt them. But things snowballed. People began bringing cats to the ladies— one of the women gained a rep as a “kitten whisperer.” She evidently whispered too much: One woman drove all the way from Florida with five kittens for them. The Annandale cats had done heavy damage to the house. Anything that was porous had to be ripped out and replaced. The house was later sold, though below market value. For the cats, the story had a happier ending. The women had taken “really good care” of them, a neighbor said. Just one dead animal was found, and all had been neutered and vaccinated. And with the help of businesses, the NoVa cats and kittens were put up for adoption. In the end, the Chesterfield dozen was small potatoes.


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Richmonder W.L. Gibbs turns his ingenuity to the unappealing problem of cutting his “overabundant” grass, reports the Greene County Record. Gibbs wrenches his mower to pieces, jettisons the heavy gears, rigs a pulley onto the blade shaft and mounts a small but powerful electric motor onto the chassis, connecting it by a long cord to an outlet at the house. He adds an electric fan to the rig that “directs a stream of cool air” at the operator. Now he “mows blithely along in an effortless, ‘air-conditioned’ atmosphere” as his neighbors “perspire and groan” over their mowers. This will surely catch on.


A Pachyderm with a Twist

As the Twist sweeps the country as fast as the Hula-Hoop did a few years ago, the Northampton Times wonders, “How big can it get?” The answer: bigger than Chubby Checker. The centerpiece of the “Children’s Fun-Day” to be held at Cape Charles High School in October is Jewel, a teenage elephant that, when she hears Checker intoning “Let’s Twist Again,” “tosses her trunk in the air, sets her 3 tons of avoid du pois [sic] in motion,” and commences to twisting so avidly that she’ll “shake and rattle [if not roll] window panes for a block around.”


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UpFront books

New American Saga


hen my lewis earned her ph.d.

from Ohio State, she turned down a paying professorship at Harvard to work with a man she admired on a project of great importance. The man was Alex Haley, and the project was Roots: The Saga of an American Family. Although he had been toiling on it for 12 years, Haley’s epic tale was only onethird complete. So Lewis organized Haley’s mountains of research and devised a work schedule that had them writing the final twothirds of the book 24-hours-a-day, Lewis taking the shift from dawn until afternoon and Haley working from afternoon until the next morning. Eighteen months later, they were done and an American masterpiece was born. Conspicuously missing from the title page was Lewis’ name. “It did bother me,” she admits now. “I wondered why, but I didn’t let it stop me because I felt privileged to be a part of it. ... I felt a great calling to be there and to do that and to help this great man.” Thirty-seven years later, My Haley— she married Alex in 1977—finally has her own byline. Her novel, The Treason of Mary Louvestre, is the story of a slave in Norfolk who serves as a seamstress and carries the plans of CSS Virginia to the North. As the book opens, the Civil War is in its infancy, and the city of Norfolk is blockaded by the Union Navy. Mary Louvestre is a slave but sleeps in a comfortable bed in her own room in the main house. She is a highly skilled seamstress and is busy working on a fashion show that will demonstrate her talents to all of Southern high society. Her “family” promises that after this show, they will create her own fashion line to be managed by her. But, when the fateful day arrives, her mistress revels in comments by high-society friends that shed truth on the matter: “Speaking as if she weren’t

The Last Girlfriend on Earth and Other Lovely Stories by Simon Rich Little, Brown & Co. $19.99

Absurd and irreverent, Simon Rich does for fiction what Gary Larson did for cartoons. Each story in this collection begins with an awkward relationship, but then detours into the bizarre. A lonely astronaut suggests a no-gravity sexual experiment to NASA involving him and his female co-pilot. A couple sets up their single friend on a blind date, and she turns out to be a troll ... literally; she growls at him and bites him on the leg. A wonderful, hilarious collection!

within earshot, Mary heard a woman say, ‘The Louvestres trained her well. Now Norfolk and the entire South will benefit from her. Wonder if they could do it again with another one?’” Attitudes begin to shift in Norfolk, and guntoting outliers pour in from rural regions to sign up for the Confederacy. With the insurrection at Harper’s Ferry held up as good reason for “putting them back in their place,” some free blacks are sold into slavery and others are murdered. The black population realizes that their supposed freedoms were a sham. As brutalities mount, Mary decides to escape. Her master is a ship’s chandler overseeing the refurbishment of CSS Virginia, so she copies the blueprints and plots a course to Washington, D.C., hoping to do her part in bringing an end to slavery. But her journey must be taken on foot to avoid civilization. If she is seen, a black woman without papers, she knows what will happen— maybe rape, maybe torture, definitely death. To adequately describe the hardships of this 200-mile trek through Virginia’s forests, Haley took a wilderness class with a survivalist. And what did she learn? “Every single night, you have to take care of your feet,” she says. “You have to take care of your footwear. You can’t wear hard shoes [to] find your way in the woods. Imagine a woman alone trying to do that, and a woman who had grown up in privilege. One day she’s sleeping in four-poster beds, and the next day she’s trying to figure out how she’s going to live among raccoons and beavers. Then we’re talking about wintertime as well, and I don’t know about you, but I hate being cold!” Mary Louvestre was an actual person, but most of her life is unknown. It is surmised she was a free black working at the Norfolk shipyard, not a seamstress slave. But, as Haley points out, the real Mary Louvestre was just the

The Feud: The Hatfields and McCoys


The Treason of Mary Louvestre by My Haley Köehler Books, $19.95

genesis for the tale she wanted to tell. “I had to stay faithful to the times,” she says. “We can’t know actual conversations, we can’t know drama, we can’t know those kinds of things; but within that playground, we can surmise. And as we surmise, let’s be creative. That’s what historical fiction is all about.” In The Treason of Mary Louvestre, My Haley has created an intriguing and fast-paced story imbued with the realism of the early Civil War era, a time filled with uncertainty, mistrust and blind hatred. In depicting the horrors of slavery, she departs from convention by showing how African-Americans were able to fight back in a way that impacted the course of history. This historical novel is just the first in what Haley plans to be a six-book series. “What the stories will tell is the development of black America after the Civil War,” says Haley, “as we came across the Midwest, and we got into music, and we got into all sorts of areas, politics and whatnot, and we arrived to present day. All of it very, very dramatic.” Once completed, My Haley will have her own saga. And the apprentice will become the master.

The Dark Path by David Schickler Riverhead $27.95

by Dean King Little, Brown & Co. $27.99

To have sex or become a priest—this is the dilemma at the heart of David Schickler’s memoir. As a child, he spoke to God in dark places—in shadowed corners of church, in his basement bedroom at night, but mostly on a wooded path, which he visits daily in hopes that God will speak back and give his life direction. His “priesthood ache” is stymied when he goes to college and falls for a passionate, agnostic woman. This memoir is a cup of meditative punch spiked with the boozy thrill of wild and graphic sex.

Drawing upon years of original research, Dean King tells the full story of this feud from its quiet origins to its bloody end. Peace between the Hatfields and McCoys, once cooperative neighbors, was shattered by the Civil War. When the war ended their feud was just beginning, and violence escalated until the dead were too many to count on two hands. Filled with all the divergences and details that allow the story to fully manifest, The Feud is a well documented and intriguing read that American history buffs will enjoy.

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| by bill glose

A Norfolk slave smuggles Confederate Navy blueprints to the North.


And The Mountains Echoed by Khaled Hosseini Riverhead $28.95

This tale follows the vastly different paths of two motherless siblings, one adopted by a well-to-do family and the other left behind in Afghanistan. The adopted girl becomes a professor while the boy left behind sells kabobs on the street. In following their lives, Hosseini explores the many ways in which family members love, wound, betray, honor and sacrifice for one another. Broad in scope and setting, this is yet another profoundly moving novel by the author of The Kite Runner.

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8/23/13 1:06 PM

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These Charlottesville rockers have been compared to Radiohead, but AOF have a more complicated and melodic veneer that can take the listener everywhere from folk to new wave to jam rock, sometimes within the space of a single song. And it often works. Pick hit: “Hey SATAN! (I Know Where You Live).”

Put Your Lips Together Matt Ames

The Blue Ridge Folklife Festival showcases musical traditions.

Into the Ether (Philosophy Inc.)

photo top left by ferrum pr office. top right by karl roeper

This 40-song artifact is a real achievement in Outsider Art. Roanoke poet/musician Ames places his (often hilarious) spoken-word ruminations and character-driven vignettes over low-fidelity soundscapes that range from the eerily bluesy to the full-out rocking to the brazenly atonal. Get this crank an agent. Pick hit: “Hotel Lounge.”

Canary oh canary

Sleep (COC) A Richmond standout since forming three years ago in a band lottery, COC have perfected a danceable but strangely foreboding sound that focuses on guitarist/ vocalist Michael Harl’s talent in building an atmosphere. Good, but hard to sleep to. Pick hit: “Dreamshark.”


he blue ridge folklife

Festival, after 41 years, is starting to blow. “It’s the first time ever,” says Roddy Moore, the director of the Blue Ridge Institute at Ferrum College, with a giddy tone in his voice. “We’re doing a whistling workshop. There are people out there who are exceptionally good whistlers on their own [or] they might play banjo or guitar and whistle. We’d like to feature them at the festival.” This unique whistling demonstration will join numerous attractions taking over the Ferrum College campus Oct. 26. The Blue Ridge Folklife Festival has grown to become the largest nonprofit fundraising event in Franklin County and an important meeting place for a wide range of rural diversions that include coondogs, pinstriped automobiles, antique tractors, fiddlers, moonshine stills, handmade crafts and regional foods such as black pot chicken and Brunswick stew. The intent is to showcase the tradition-bearers, Moore says via telephone from the Institute, the official State Center for Blue Ridge Folklore. “It’s not something that they learn in a class but something that is a part of the people’s family history or lore.” A key feature, always, is the tra-


ditional music on stages across the grounds. “You’ve got to show how the future can tie to the past and we can show it with music,” Moore says, adding that the key is diversity. “We’ve had blues, bluegrass, old-time, rockabilly, anything that was played or sung around here.” The 2013 lineup will feature, among others, the AfricanYou've got American gospel of to show how Larnell Starkey and the Spiritual Seven, the future the deft country can tie to the guitar of Wayne Henderson and a past, and we host of mountain bands such as show it with string the Dry Hill Draggers, New Ballard’s music.” Branch Bogtrotters and the Zephyr Lightning Bolts. And let’s not forget the whistling. While the call is out for more “oldtime whistlers,” virtuoso lip players like Eddie Ogle and Greg Cornett are slated to strut their spit at this year’s gathering. Cornett comes from a family with Grayson County roots and many string players. “My dad always whistled, from as far back as I can remember,” Cornett says from his home in Kingsport, Tennessee, just

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| By Don Harrison

Pangaea (AOF)


The Anatomy of Frank

over the border. “And I could do it at a very early age. My son whistles as well, and you have to have some sort of musical aptitude to whistle in tune, and to be able to whistle the music that’s in your head.” “In the ’20s and ’30s, there were a host of country music artists who whistled, and then it disappeared,” Roddy Moore says. “It used to be that everyone knew someone in their family who could whistle a tune from beginning to end, and we’d like to know if there are any good whistlers still out there today.” This writer has worked on BRI projects and hosted showcases at previous installments of the festival, and what I like about it is the refusal to play it safe—as with the whistling. Ralph Stanley, the late Doc Watson, and the Cajun group BeauSoleil have appeared in the past, but the festival largely eschews star attractions in favor of regional performers still trafficking in original (or even unusual) styles. “We’re a reflection of the community,” says BRI Assistant Director Vaughan Webb, who has helped to put on the gathering for more than 30 years. But it’s not the same old thing year Above left: after year, Webb adds. Harry Robey Traditions can gain twisting or lose public intertobacco; right: est. “It’s impossible to Sam Wood get African-American fiddling. banjo players. They just aren’t out there,” he says. Considering that it was African-Americans who first introduced the instrument to America, this is cause for some folkloric concern. Webb also thinks that the region’s Piedmont Blues guitar style might be in jeopardy—but thank goodness for Jeffrey Scott, the late John Jackson’s nephew, who is on this year’s schedule. I’ve always appreciated that festival visitors learn about a host of traditions and subcultures from Southwest Virginia, not just the quilts and baked apple pies and bluegrass that we all know. “We’ve got five or six different piano players that play oldtime music,” Moore says of this year’s “Don’t Shoot the Piano Player” program, another unusual slated attraction. “You don’t think of old-time music and piano, but there was a strong tradition here of that. That’s because old-time music was the dance music. You see, bluegrass is listening music; old time was for dancing.”

virginia living

8/23/13 1:08 PM

Crossroads Art Center

Art happens here.

Meet International Artist David Dunlop Friday, September 20 | 6:00–9:00 p.m. David Dunlop is a painter, noted museum and gallery lecturer and teacher, and host/writer for the Emmy Award-winning PBS series, “Landscapes Through Time with David Dunlop.” He has developed two series of art-instruction DVDs: Painting Landscapes with David Dunlop and Painting Skies with David Dunlop. His interests range from painting technique and art history to neurobiology and research into sight and perception—all of which he writes about in his weekly blog.

Art opening & reception | Friday, September 20 | 6:00–9:00 p.m. Sponsored by Keep Virginia Beautiful Featuring the Crossroads Member and All-Media shows, Christopher Wynn Student Show, and exhibitions by the Bon Air Artist Association and the Virginia Collage Society. Admission to the art center is always free.

linda hollett-bazouzi

david tanner

christopher wynn

CroSSroADS ArT CEnTEr 2016 Staples Mill Road • Richmond, Virginia • 804.278.8950 • Find us on Facebook

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8/17/13 5:09 PM


Day's Catch, 1864 oil on canvas, 24× 36 in. by john bucknell russell


ocated at the epicenter of

Virginia’s horse country in Middleburg, the National Sporting Library and Museum was a complete revelation to me. Before I visited, I pictured a quaint little space with fox-hunting scenes and ducks mounted on the wall. Though I probably should have known better, given Middleburg’s tony reputation, nothing prepared me for the gem of an institution that I found set on the crest of a hill just outside the town center. I can perhaps be forgiven my ignorance because, while the library has been humming along nicely since 1954, the museum’s existence is actually quite recent. Its seeds were planted in 2002 when Felicia Warburg Rogan, former owner of Oakencroft Vineyard and Winery in Charlottesville, donated 16 major works from her important British sporting art collection. With this cornerstone in place, the library expanded its mission to include art, and the Felicia Warburg Rogan Sporting Art Initiative was established to encourage other donations. By 2008, so many had been received that a proper museum space had to be created. The historic Vine Hill, built in 1804 (which had

Exhibits Around the State

housed the library) was duly renovated, tripling in size and incorporating up-to-the-minute museum technologies. Considerable effort was made to preserve the building’s original character—fireplaces, floors, mantles and other ornamentation were retained, giving the gallery spaces a suitably elegant Old-World feel. Hunting, racing and fishing are all represented in the museum’s collection, which ranges in scope from contemporary artist Nic Fiddian-Green’s striking monumental bronze horse head, Still Water (2011), which graces the entrance foyer, to the charming Victorian genre scene, Foxhounds and Terrier in a Stable Interior (1878) by John Emms. The NSLM also presents an ongoing schedule of revolving exhibitions that feature animal and sporting art, including the upcoming Angling in the Western World (Sept. 28, 2013 – March 14, 2014), a loan exhibition of approximately 40 American and British paintings and sculpture drawn from museum and private collections, that focuses on the subject of fishing as it has been pursued by the gentry down through the ages using a hook and line. John Bucknell Russell’s beautifully painted Day’s Catch (1864), an arrangement of

■ The Fralin Museum of Art, Émilie Charmy.

■ Virginia MOCA, Matt Eich - Seven Cities.

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| by sarah sargent

The National Sporting Library and Museum in Middleburg will reel you in.



three trout on a leafy riverbank, is both still life and landscape with a little genre scene thrown in. The painting not only conveys the silvery suppleness of the freshly caught fish with incredible veracity, but also describes a pastoral setting, likely Scotland, and features a fisherman casting his line in the upper right corner. John Frederick Lewis’ Sportsman Fishing Beside a Highland Stream is a portrait of the gillie (sporting attendant) of Sir Edwin Landseer, the famous British sporting artist who was Lewis’ friend and angling buddy. The figure’s casual stance and the timelessness of his garb add a sense of immediacy to a work that was painted in 1829, and gives Day's Catch by one the sense that the pastime John Bucknell of angling has changed very Russell on exhibit little over time. at the National Opening Oct. 12, Sporting Library Contemporary Artistand Museum. Naturalists: Robin Hill & Meg Page (through Feb. 25, 2014) features two painters of enormous flair and sensitivity. The Australian-born Hill combines incredibly detailed representations of birds with a contemporary approach to composition. Influenced by Japanese screens, much of the space that Hill’s birds occupy is spare, sometimes gilded or colored, but otherwise unadorned. This approach not only adds an interesting tension between the representational and abstract, it also leaves room for the viewer’s imagination to come into play. Page’s luminous watercolors are built up with layer upon layer of pigment. Precisely rendered, the works range from the fanciful glistening blue crab on a map of the Chesapeake to her handsome Albrecht Dürer-like hare on its velvety perch of moss. Like Audubon before them, Hill and Page strive to capture their subjects in their natural surroundings but, as NSLM Curator Claudia Pfeiffer points out, these 21st-century artists face new challenges, for, “unlike their predecessors, who oftentimes found themselves cataloguing new species in a lush, abundant, and untouched environment, Hill and Page face the modern issue of documenting and preserving wildlife in a diminishing habitat.” Over in the library, Teaming with Nature (Oct. 8, 2012 - Jan. 30, 2014), curated by Maureen Gustafson, will feature James Prosek’s watercolors executed for his book Trout of the World (2013), an expanded version of a book the 38-year-old Prosek wrote on North American trout when he was just 19. Passionate about his subject, Prosek’s glorious watercolors capture the stunning beauty of this remarkable genus in all its eye-popping color and surface pattern. “Our goal is to highlight the rich artistic heritage of sporting pursuits,” says Pfeiffer, “not just within the genre of ‘sporting art,’ but in the broader art-historical context. Going forward, we will continue to develop exhibits delving more fully into the art and culture of equestrian, angling and field sports.”

■ Eleanor D. Wilson Museum at Hollins University, Sue Johnson: American Dreamscape.

virginia living

8/23/13 1:10 PM

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8/20/13 12:40 PM

UpFront notes from around the state.

One For The Books

Spat Sanctuary Cannes? After Math Class, Perhaps It’s suspense and high drama: A young widow sets up camp in a lonely bed and breakfast where she meets some questionable characters. But here’s the plot twist: Stephen French, the writer/director/producer, is a freshman in high school. To help fund his hour-long psychological thriller Detached, the young Edinburg resident snagged a $500 grant from the Virginia Film Office. The 14-year-old began filming in May, when he was still in eighth grade, and wrapped by mid-July. Two premieres—one at Theatre Shenandoah in Edinburg, the other at Winchester Alamo Drafthouse Cinema—are slated for August. French is already planning his next film, Tracing a Sparrow, a drama about a silent film director. VFO Director Andy Edmunds notes that it’s unusual for the VFO to provide a grant to someone so young. But, says Edmunds, “This young man Stephen French today could be Steven Spielberg tomorrow.”

photo by abby french

The Elizabeth River in Norfolk has been closed to oyster harvesting since the 1920s to protect the species, but efforts to change that might get oyster farmers back in the water by 2020. The Elizabeth River Project, a local wildlife restoration nonprofit, has built four artificial reefs to encourage oyster population growth along the Lafayette River, a tributary of the Elizabeth. One, made of recycled shards of concrete rather than old oyster shells, is already home to thousands of oyster babies, or spats. “The closer they are together, the better the chances for baby oysters to grow,” says Joe Rieger, the project’s deputy director for restoration. Plans call for two more acres to be added next year to the current setup, which now spreads over only three-tenths of an acre. For oystermen and oyster lovers, that is spat-tacular news.

| by marie albiges and andrew stoddard

In April 1797, George Washington wrote to a friend about his desire to build a place “for the accommodation and security of my military, civil and private papers, which are voluminous and may be interesting.” Now, more than two centuries later, the Mount Vernon Ladies’ Association is opening the Fred W. Smith National Library for the Study of George Washington, Sept. 27. The 45,000-square-foot library, located on the Mount Vernon estate, will house thousands of important books and documents from the 18th and 19th centuries, including 80 books owned by Washington as well as some 450 letters and other writings by our first president, most notably his Acts of Congress. While the library will not be open to the public on a regular basis, a small Scholar’s Residence next door to the library will allow visiting intellectuals to stay close to their studies.

b e l lw e t h e r

A compendium of news and

We're So Vain You see them every day: OINK1, ACHEW, MMMBACN. Vanity plates on some 10 million American vehicles generate more than $200 million a year in states’ revenues. And who is the vainest of them all? According to a study done by the Virginia DMV in November 2012, Virginia has the highest saturation rate of personalized plates of all the states, with 1.2 million drivers paying $10 apiece annually (in addition to registration fees) for custom-made tags … a pittance compared to some other states. Oregon, for instance, charges $124 for personalized plates. And, according to, one proud Texan earlier this year paid $25,000 for a tag that reads HOUSTON. But you can’t just say anything. The Virginia DMV has a “word committee” of employees that meets once a month to nix requests for offensive plates. Of 164,000 vanity applications in 2012, 860 were denied or recalled, including EWOBAMA and IPUNCHU, leaving the rest the opportunity to be heard or, um, read. “I definitely feel like I’m expressing my personality,” says Elisabeth Stephens, a Christopher Newport University student whose own plates read “LUV & FTH.” So, go ahead; express yourself, but KP IT RL.

contributed photos

Monkey See The Virginia Zoo in Norfolk is taking a holistic approach to keeping its animals healthy. Set to open next spring, its new 11,000-square-foot Animal Wellness Center will comprise a new veterinary hospital with a laboratory and a pharmacy, as well as a nutrition center where healthy meals will be prepared for the 400 non-human residents. “It’s a pretty unique concept on the East Coast,” says Windfield Danielson, marketing and public relations manager, adding that they hope the up-close-and-personal experience will attract young folks to the field of veterinary medicine. The $4.2 million dollar project, which began construction last summer, includes orchards and gardens that will provide food for the animals and even an educational component on organic gardening. A little less warm and fuzzy, large viewing windows will enable guests to watch medical procedures in state-of-the-art surgical and treatment suites. Now, if they can only keep the animals from pressing the button for the nurse.

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virginia living

8/23/13 1:14 PM

10 · 12 · 13 | VA BEACH



They are catastrophically injured. ‘They’ are you.

The suffering my clients endure and the courage and hope they demonstrate inspires and drives me.


I represent injured people. They are factory workers, police officers, doctors and nurses, insurance agents, laborers, housewives, executives, secretaries, school teachers, store clerks, grandparents, and children.

Duncan Garnett, Jr.

866.442.4583 |

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8/22/13 11:05 AM



s t y l e | September-October 2013




Innocently provocative, elegantly demure.


ecreate the sleek sophistication of

the time before unisex, when a well-turned ankle was enough to turn heads and finishing touches were flourishes, not mere accents.

1. Trussardi jacket Men’s Shearling DoubleBreasted Jacket, $2,650,



2. Dolce & Gabbana Fall 2013 Ready to Wear,


3. Elizabeth Locke Bangle Muse Intaglio 19K Gold in Neutral, $15,575, 4. Moschino Skirt Pleated Mid-Length Skirt, $1,685,


5. Louis Vuitton CuffLinks Cavalier Cufflinks, $575, 6. Gucci Pump Beverly Patent Leather in Black, $695, 7. Gucci Gloves Guanti Donna Jaguar-Print Calf Hair Opera Gloves, $845, 8. Prada Bag Saffiano Triple-Zip Satchel Bag in Orange, $2,290,

•7 •8

9 •

9. Moschino Blouse Embellished Collar Silk Top, $625, 10. HermÈs Scarf Pique Fleuri de Provence print, $410,

10 •

11. Ray Ban Sunglasses Clubmaster RB3016 114505, $195, 12. Prada Shoes Medallion Toe Wingtip Blucher, $1,100,

11 •

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KVB Keep Virginia Beautiful invites you to


KVB 60th Anniversary Gala October 5, 2013, 7-11pm VMFA in Richmond, VA

For tickets, visit

rafting on the james or hiking the blackwater trail? bicycling through town and shopping on main street? wood-fired pizza or a drunken ribeye? champagne or an ice cold microbrew? flip flops or high heels?

just some of the options you can enjoy during a weekend getaway at lynchburg’s only historic waterfront hotel. pack a bag, get a sitter, jump in the car, and in just a short drive you’ll be pampered at this old shoe factory that’s been converted into a luxurious boutique hotel dedicated to comfort, relaxation and, of course, shoes. relaxation at its best! enjoy two award-winning restaurants – shoemakers and waterstone – as well as our onsite jefferson street brewery.

2013 best luxury hotel winner!

w w w.craddock terr I 434.455.150 0 I Historic Water front, Downtown, Lynchburg, Virginia

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| galas & gatherings

Pam Reynolds, Alex Nyerges and Kathryn Gray

about town

Jim Moran and Doug Koelemay

Jack and Nita Enoch

{ Richmond }


On April 27, 165 guests attended the Richmond SPCA’s Progressive Dinner in homes along Monument Avenue. The sold-out event raised more than $40,000.

Jack and Sarah Robb

Marie Massey Alan Hutson and Megan Clyne

Casey Veatch and Mary Agee

{ Vienna }

NVFS More than 500 supporters of Northern Virginia Family Service attended the Road to Independence Gala at the Hilton McLean Tysons Corner. The May 3 event raised $470,000.

Allen King and Robin Starr

contributed photos by melissa desjardins and caroline radom

{ Newpor t News }

Mariners’ Museum

Bob Cohen and Dorothy Kerper Monnelly

Pam and Richard Neuhaus and Barb Worthen

On May 30, 250 members of the Mariners’ Museum attended a special opening of Fragile Waters. The exhibition, which closed Sept. 2, included works by photographer Ansel Adams. Pat Herrity and Bill Hazel Carolyn Berkowitz

Tom Moore, Elliot Gruber, Jeanne Adams and Michael Adams

Ernest H. Brooks II and Mike Robison

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Join us for some good food, great wine and lots of family fun. And you’ll have plenty of time to talk with the wine makers as you taste away.


The 7th Annual Stratford Hall


OySter FeStival

Fall in Love with Wine and Oysters! September 21 & 22, 2013 | Saturday, 11am to 6pm | Sunday, 11am to 5pm

Chesapeake Bay & Tidewater Oysters • Wine Tasting from Virginia Wineries • Great House Tours Arts & Crafts Vendors • Specialty Foods • Kids Arcade • Antique Car Show (Sunday)

Tickets & Information at or 804.493.8038 Event Sponsors

In Partnership with


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Fresh and classic styles for fall

EXIT 269 off I-81

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New accessories arriving daily


Jazzy Giraffe

In the Henry Street Shops in Merchants’ Square, Downtown Historic Williamsburg Mon–Sat, 10–6 Sunday, Noon–5 (757) 903-4884

8/19/13 11:46 AM

UpFront about town

Caption TK

{ Richmond }

Modelogic Wilhelmina

Linda Zachmann Sam and David A. Sam

Mary Horton and George Kartis

| galas & gatherings

On May 4, some 200 people gathered to celebrate the 20th anniversary of Modelogic Wilhelmina. The event took place at the INM United Building in Richmond.

Tiffany Ung, Clarissa Berry, Joseph R. Daniel and Sylke Heil

Jeff Hathaway and Stacie Vanchieri

Jay "Miss J" Alexander with MW Models

Felix Fraraccio and Patti Bricken

{ Culpeper } Ted Wallof, Su Thongpan and Emily Moser Wright

Jorge Urena, Dillon Rosel and Aly El

Donna Ransone and Stoner Winslett

{ Richmond }

photos right by sarah ferguson, contributed photos

Richmond Ballet

Germanna Educational Foundation Germanna’s Daniel Technology Center was the site of Monte Carlo Night April 20, when 250 supporters gathered to raise $140,000 to benefit the Germanna Educational Foundation.

More than 230 guests celebrated Leap Week at the Celebrate Richmond Ballet Dinner March 23 at the Page Bond Gallery and Try-Me. Leap Week was the most successful fundraising event in the Ballet’s history, grossing more than $700,000.

Dave and Diana Beran

Monte Carlo Night in Culpeper

Sunita and Shanataram Talegaonkar, Shira Lanyi and Tom and Barbara Wright

Moira and C.T. Hill and Gloria Keeton

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Anne and Ron Holmes

virginia living

8/23/13 1:18 PM



Take $25 Off Entire Purchase

Valid at any Doncaster retail store. Not valid on prior purchases or on merchandise discounted more than 70% off original price. One offer per customer and some exclusions apply. Offer expires October 31st, 2013.

New Town Shops

5102 Main Street, Williamsburg, VA | 757-221-6630

Mon. – Thus. 10 -7, Fri. 10 - 9, Sat. 10 – 6 & Sun. 12 – 6 Missy, Petite & Women’s sizes available Where prior season fashions create current season looks. Doncaster Never Goes Out of Style!

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aren Lynn Richardson and Michael Glen Littlefield were married June 2, 2012, at Pippin Hill Farm & Vineyards in Charlottesville. Mrs. Littlefield is the daughter of Mr. and Mrs. William Richardson of Vernon Hills, Illinois. Mr. Littlefield is the son of Mr. and Mrs. Glen Littlefield of Fredericksburg. The couple lives in Laguna Beach, California. Photography by Don Mears



he wedding of Lauren Pomponio and Rory Pillsbury, both of Washington, D.C., took place Dec. 15, 2012, at Keswick Hall in Charlottesville. The bride is the daughter of Mr. and Mrs. Joseph Pomponio of Willis. The groom is the son of Sarah Pillsbury of Washington, D.C., and Janet and L. Harrison Pillsbury of Bethesda, Maryland. Photography by Jen Fariello



eena Kapoor, daughter of Nirmala D’Souza of Austin, Texas, married Anupam Bapu Jena, son of Mr. and Mrs. Purusottam Jena of Richmond, Sept. 8, 2012. The wedding took place at The Cathedral of the Sacred Heart in Richmond. The couple lives in Brookline, Massachusetts. Photography by PW Photography

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Tabletopgraphics Window displays

Visit our 2000 sqft showroom to see over 800 samples of printing, displays, and graphics

Retractable bannerstands

Tradeshow displays

P.O.P. signage

Display stands

Decals & stickers

Outdoor/event signs

(804) 366-0642 • • 7 East Cary Street • Richmond, VA

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8/22/13 3:10 PM

september 5-8 Love in the Time of Inflation Arrington

| september~october 2013

Back in the days of free love, Neil Young was one of many headliners who drew thousands to Max Yasgur’s farm in upstate New York to make Woodstock history. Young is back with his band Crazy Horse, along with The Black Crowes, Widespread Panic and Love Canon, to name but a few of the 15-plus bands who will take the stage at the Interlocken Festival on Oak Ridge Farm in Arrington. Four-day tickets are $285. (No plans at present for one-day tickets.) Feel the not-so-free love. 1-800-594-TIXX (8499),

a r o u n d t h e s tat e


september 6-7 mo' better blues Virginia Beach

september 6-7 A Festivus for the Rest of Us, Mathews

top photo courtesy of the white dog bistro; bottom photo by cathy dixson

what’s that billow of smoke coming from the tent near The White Dog Bistro in Mathews? Don’t call the fire department. It’s Cigarfest, an event designed exclusively for our fuming friends who love to light up. While everyone else is enjoying Mathews Market Days, smokers can enjoy their very own festival. Tickets are $25 per person per day. Upgrade to the VIP package ($50 per day) to add barbecue, cigar samples and Scotch tasting. Both tickets buy you the companionship of other dedicated tobacco enthusiasts. So snip your tip, and puff away. 804-725-7680, september 20-22 Deer Tick to headline Bristol

september 21 Squeal Like a Pig Reston

september 21 Arrrggghh!! Blacksburg

No, we’re not talking about a weekend camping trip. Deer Tick is one of the musical acts appearing at the Bristol Rhythm and Roots Reunion Sept. 20-22 in downtown Bristol, along with Lucinda Williams, The Masters of Bluegrass and more. Bad news if you don’t already have a ticket: Prices went up Sept. 1. Day passes for Friday and Sunday are $25 per day; Saturday’s pass is $35. Weekend passes are $60 in advance; $70 at the gate.

That’s what organizers of the Beer, Bourbon and BBQ Festival say you’ll do if you join them in Reston Town Center. A $25 advance ticket gives you access to vendors, seminars, live music and exhibits; the $35 ticket adds a tasting glass to sample the more than 40 bourbons and 60 beers that will be available; and the high-on-the-hog $75 ticket includes libation tastings plus lots o’ pork in various presentations. Prices are higher at the door.

Here’s a double-header: a chance to dress like a pirate and break a Guinness World Record at the same time. Join other like-minded seadogs when they gather for Pirates Pack the Park at the Mariners’ Museum in Newport News. The park opens at 10 a.m.—the head count starts at 2 p.m. sharp. No pillaging or burning required.

october 18-19 Boo Who? Manassas Once a Civil War hospital and home to slaves, Ben Lomond Historic Site, along with East Coast Research and Investigation of the Paranormal, will host two ghost seminars and investigations to determine if all those plaintive wails and rattling chains folks claim to hear really are spirits from the past. (Many Manassas residents and visitors to Ben Lomond are already believers.) It’s hard to tell when the ghostliest times are, but take your chances and choose: Friday or Saturday. Both nights begin at 7 p.m. with a seminar about paranormal theories and techniques to monitor ghostly activities. Paranormal investigations begin at 9 p.m. and go to midnight. Reservations required. 703-367-7872,

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Summer is over, which is reason enough for the blues. But you won’t mind this kind: Blues at the Beach, two days of free concerts right on the water at Virginia Beach’s 17th Street Park. Local, regional and national headliners bring the sounds. In addition to the music, folks from the Natchel’ Blues Network will be offering instrumental workshops free to spectators.

october 4-6 Art, History and Moo-sic Bath County If you want to celebrate Bath County’s roots, amble on down to the Old Dairy, about a half-mile south of where US Route 220 (Sam Snead Highway) meets state route 39. That’s where folks’ll be gatherin’ for lectures, art shows and music at the Old Dairy Heritage Festival. Won’t cost you a cent.

virginia living

8/22/13 2:58 PM



at the Center!


Golden Opportunity

Experience a True Sailing Adventure aboard the Yorktown Schooners

Serenity & Alliance

Sailing three times daily from Riverwalk Landing Pier Yorktown, April thru October

Now accepting reservations for our

Caribbean Cruises.

hilltop west Hilltop West Hilltop West Shopping Center Virginia Beach 757.523.1549

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Spend a week aboard the Alliance sailing the U.S. Virgin Islands or the San Blas Islands of Panama! For Information Call

Must reserve your cabin by September 30.

757-639-1233 or visit www.sailyorktown.comm

8/23/13 1:46 PM

P rofile

Michel Zajur at Richmond’s Main Street Station.

We need engineers, we need scientists, we need the workforce for tomorrow. The Hispanic community is the fastest growing community. It’s a very young community, yet it has the highest dropout rate. That’s a problem. One of the big programs we’ve initiated is Passport to Education. We give out scholarships and information for students and we’re building a web portal to help guide parents and families. We worked with NASA at the Science Museum and brought together 200 Hispanic students and did a live tele-link with them— [the students] were talking with the astronauts in space, and it was televised nationally. When I started the chamber, I went to see Jim Dunn, who was the president of the Richmond Chamber. I didn’t want to start anything that divided people. I told Jim I felt this was something very needed, because how do you bring people who speak limited English that aren’t going to get involved in the RVA chamber ... they feel like fish out of water. He encouraged me.

Point Man

Virginia Hispanic Chamber of Commerce CEO and founder Michel Zajur builds bridges between communities. — i n t e r v i e w b y S h a n n o n O ’ N e i l l—

photo by isaac harrell


orn in mexico city, Michel Zajur immi-

grated to Richmond with his family in the early 1960s. For over 30 years, the Zajurs owned La Siesta Mexican Restaurant, a popular eatery that also served as a de facto information hub for the Hispanic community. In the 1990s, Zajur and his wife Lisa formed Siesta Town (now known as the Spanish Academy and Cultural Institute), a program to help young students—and now Fortune 500 companies—­ learn more about Hispanic culture. After years of counseling customers on employment, housing and legal matters, Zajur formed the membershipbased nonprofit Virginia Hispanic Chamber of Commerce in 2000 with a dual mission to provide the Hispanic community with access to education and information and to help with integration into the community-at-large. The top 20 Hispanic-owned companies in Virginia produced revenues of $1.3 billion and employed 7,613 people last year, according to the 2012 500 ranking. These figures, combined with the 2010 U.S. Census Bureau report that Hispanic-owned businesses increase at more than double the national rate, mean Virginia is poised to play a key role with a new generation of business owners. With offices in Richmond and Vienna, Zajur and the VAHCC have worked to collaborate with other chambers, businesses, nonprofits and government agencies to leverage this growth. They host conferences, workshops and networking events and participate in events like the Latino International Trade and

Business Summit. In October, they will host their 10th annual Hispanic Gala in honor of National Hispanic Heritage Month. Past attendees have included former president of Mexico Vicente Fox. The 55-year-old Zajur, who currently chairs the Virginia Latino Advisory Board, has been appointed by governors Mark Warner, Tim Kaine and Bob McDonnell to serve on various commissions, task forces and transition teams. In September of 2012, Zajur received the Ohtli Award, the highest honor bestowed by the Mexican government upon a non-Mexican citizen. my parents went through—I think it can be a lot easier if you have an organization like this to help guide you. My family came from Mexico when I was very young. We were the translators for our parents. There was no other option. You had to learn English, you had to speak English. If you wanted any different kinds of food, you had to go to Washington. We even grew jalapenos and different things because it wasn’t easy to get.

Just seeing what

A lot of what we do is help companies that face barriers so they can reach the market. We help them with Spanish, as they are trying to market their products to the Hispanic community, or help them do better outreach, or hire Hispanics. Language and cultural barriers are huge, so, one of the things we do is go to the companies and help to acculturate them and set up training for culture and language.

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One of the businesses we helped bring here is Goya Foods. We were having our gala and so I went and called the owner, Bob Unanue, and I invited him and said, “Look, I know you were here looking in Virginia, and I’d like to invite you [to the gala] so you can see it and not write it off.” So he came, and I introduced him to the governor, then it was Mark Warner, and to the head of the Greater Richmond Chamber of Commerce and the [Virginia] Secretary of Commerce and Trade. He and his brother Peter, they were the last ones to leave; and after that they came back and saw there was a Hispanic community here. They ended up putting their distribution center here just south of Chesterfield. The greater Washington area probably has one of the most affluent Hispanic communities in the world. A lot of our members in Northern Virginia are big IT companies. Dario Marquez [CEO of MVM, provider of physical security services and specialized training programs] has over 3,000 employees. I met Tony Jimenez [founder, president and CEO of MicroTech, a technology integrator and service provider], when he started his company and was working from his kitchen table. Now he’s grown his business to over $300 million, and it was listed as the fastest growing Hispanic company for three consecutive years. Joe Travez [CEO, Prototype Productions, a hightech product development, manufacturing and commercialization group] sold one technology for a half-billion dollars.

you help mainstream businesses do business with the Hispanic community here in the U.S., which is over 45 million Hispanics? It’s a huge opportunity, and you don’t want to miss the wave. If you can learn a little Spanish for competitive advantage, if you can understand and be acculturated, that’s how we’re helping mainstream business. On the Hispanic side, and that’s why our logo is a bridge, is the same thing—you’ve got to learn English. If you want to have any success here, you’ve got to learn English. If you want to go ahead and understand the system—the educational system, you want to understand how to do business, how to market yourself—you are in a new country, this is your country now, and you’ve got to learn about it. ❉

So how can

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E D U C A T I O N I N V I R G I N I A 2013

Cho ors’ Edit 2 0 1 3 i c e

Miller School of AlbeMArle

Building responsible citizens, insightful thinkers, and compassionate individuals since 1878

Miller School of Albemarle is a selective, college-preparatory boarding and day school for girls and boys in grades 8-12. Located on 1,600 pristine acres twelve miles west of Charlottesville, Virginia, MSA combines rigorous academics, comprehensive fine and performing arts, and a robust athletic program (including our nationally recognized endurance cycling team, above). To learn more about Miller School of Albemarle, or to schedule a visit, please call our Admission Office at 434-823-4805 x240.

StArt your Adventure At 1000 SAMuel Miller loop, chArlotteSville, virginiA






courage her


to of




school speaking

president. to




voice for the whole school. At Saint Mary’s, we’re here to support our students throughout any challenge they want to tackle. From honors classes to international studies to a renowned arts program, endless opportunities are yours for the taking.


Serving girls, grades 9-12, boarding and day. 900 Hillsborough Street Raleigh, NC 27603-1689 919.424.4100

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It’s a Northern Neck Tradition.

Readers of Virginia Living magazine selected Burkes Fine Jewelers as the “Best Fine Jewelry Store” in eastern Virginia.

86 South Main Street Kilmarnock, Virginia 804-435-1302

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8/20/13 9:38 AM

REVEL IN THE LUXURY EXPERIENCE of Regent Seven Seas Cruises.® Don’t Settle for Less.


804-747-7077 Glen Allen 804-344-3244 Richmond 434-295-0004 Charlottesville | Free Roundtrip Air, Unlimited Shore Excursions and Pre-Paid Gratuities Fares listed are per person in U.S. dollars, based on double occupancy. All fares and offers are for new bookings only, are capacity controlled and subject to availability, may not be combined with other offers and may be withdrawn at any time. At the time of your purchase, fares may be higher. 2-for-1 Fares are based on published Full Brochure Fares; fares may not include Personal Charges, Optional Facilities and Services Fees as dened in the Terms and Conditions of the Guest Ticket Contract. Air Inclusive Program applies to economy, roundtrip ights only from select U.S. & Canadian gateways: ATL, BOS, CLT, DFW, DEN, EWR, FLL, IAD, IAH, JFK, LAX, LGA, MCO, MIA, MSP, ORD, PBI, PHL, PHX, SAN, SEA, SFO, TPA, YUL, YVR and YYZ. Advertised fare includes all air surcharges, airline fees and government taxes. Some airline-imposed personal charges, including but not limited to baggage, priority boarding, and special seating, may apply. For details visit explore Air routing, scheduling and air carrier are at the discretion of Regent Seven Seas Cruises®. Air Inclusive Program and Air Upgrade Offers are not combinable with 3rd and/or 4th guests in a suite. Due to government regulations, if you are delayed or unable to board at embarkation, you may not be able to board at a later time. In such event, Carrier shall have no liability to refund any Cruise or CruiseTour Fares. FREE Unlimited Shore Excursion reservations are accepted on a rst-come, rst-served basis. Regent Seven Seas Cruises® reserves the right to correct errors or omissions and to change any and all fares or promotional offers at any time. Complete terms and conditions may be found in the Guest Ticket Contract. Ships’ Registry: Bahamas ©2013 Regent Seven Seas Cruises®

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8/23/13 2:52 PM

inspiring Summer Pittman Flowers, a Barton graduate who earned a Bachelor of Science in Nursing (B.S.N.) degree and is now a flight nurse at Vidant Medical Center

INSPIRING ALUMNI | You name it, they’re doing it. Barton Alumni are

employed as nurses and news writers, educators and engineers, bankers and brokers, photographers and fundraisers, ministers and managers, scientists and social workers, artists and athletic trainers. They’re civic leaders and community volunteers…parents, neighbors, and friends. Barton gives you the same promise it gave them: to provide a foundation that prepares you to achieve your dreams.

311 Second Street | Williamsburg, VA 23185 | 757-220-9494 164 East Lancaster Avenue | Wayne, PA 19087 | 610-995-0300

/bartoncollege NEED MORE INFORMATION? 1-800-345-4973 |


Look for our December 2013 Special Sections Holiday Gift Guide

State of Law

Hospitals & Health Care

Don’t miss the opportunity to promote your business in our December 2013 Special Sections! Deadline October 4

Join others who have enjoyed excellent success in advertising: Call (804) 343-7539 or visit to discover how your business can be a part of Virginia Living today!

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8/23/13 3:03 PM


Chef Jacques E. Haeringer.

L’Auberge Chez François Classically, unapologetically, French. — B y L i s a A n t o n e ll i B a c o n —

photo by françois haubtmann


f you truly love classical French

cuisine, the kind defined in 1903 by Georges Auguste Escoffier in Le Guide Culinaire, then you know that it’s hard to find, pushed aside these many years by dietary trends, the proliferation of health clubs and surgeon general warnings. In an age where we blithely pay $18 for two bites of tuna that share a platter with a squiggle of an unnamed sauce, not many establishments have the nerve to serve medallions of beef and veal, grilled lamb and lobster on one plate or to elevate rich sauces to the heights they deserve. Celebrating haute cuisine, L’Auberge Chez François in Great Falls is that rare exception, where butter is brazenly mentioned in a major percentage of entrée descriptions; where cream sauces nap anything from veal to crab; where princely truffles and saffron are used with a liberal hand. Ironically, owner and chef Jacques E. Haeringer scoffs at the notion that his menu is

decadent à l’Escoffier. “You’re making an assumption that all the food is very rich,” he says. Point taken. His menu includes options like le gâteau de legumes grilles et son coulis de tomates (grilled organic spring vegetables with herb tomato coulis) or les filets de truite du Shenandoah sautés, crabe du Maryland et amandes grilles (filets of fresh rainbow trout, sautéed crabmeat and toasted almonds). In fact, he notes, the oh-so-healthy farm-to-table movement is nothing new at L’Auberge Chez François: “Isn’t that the way it’s supposed to be?” he asks. In addition to using local, organic product, L’Auberge has its own garden behind the restaurant. “Last summer, I didn’t buy a single tomato in two-and-a-half months,” the chef says. But fresh veggies do not a classic French menu make. Excusez-moi, but most of its entries include something damned by cardiologists or personal trainers. Even the choucroute (sauerkraut, which is, for the most part, fatless), o cto b e r 2 0 1 3

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comes with sausages and a palm-sized portion of deliciously fatty foie gras. “We’re very unapologetic about doing stuff that is classic,” says Chef Haeringer. “It wouldn’t be on the menu if it didn’t move.” And move they do because, whether you know it or not, there is a huge cabal of serious if clandestine devotees of the classic French menu. A routine Saturday night at L’Auberge sees as many as 300 customers served in this rambling restaurant of interconnected dining rooms. A Tuesday night might see only 50 but, even weeknights, it’s very much a coat-and-tie crowd. And just who might be among them? Pols and Beltway denizens, of course, and celebrities, like Mick Jagger. (“He came out with Miss Hall one night,” says the chef.) World travelers and the business set, too. “We’re near Reston; we’re near McLean. We’re near Dulles, and everybody comes from around the world to do business here, so there are lots of international folks. .… And every president since Truman, except Obama,” he says. He hopes to host the Obamas in the near future but, he adds, “not all the presidents were presidents when they visited.” Chef Haeringer (who, one might argue, was fated to be a chef) has been doing this a long time. His father—the François—opened the restaurant in the District of Columbia in 1954 but had to move when the entire block was sold in 1976. “Dad always wanted to do a country inn,” says Chef Haeringer, 63. “When they tore down the block, he started looking around and found this.” Only “this” didn’t look like the charming remake of an Alsatian chalet that it does now. The site used to be a rustic retail cluster: an antiques store, a hardware store and a gun shop. Chef Haeringer started working summers at age 11, beginning as busboy. He was then salad maker, working his way up through the kitchen until he left to get a degree in English from VCU; he rejoined his father in the kitchen after his The fact that 1972 graduation. Chef was a formiwe’ve been here François dable presence until his death three years all these years ago. “He was in the attests to the kitchen every day until day before he died, fact that we get the tasting sauces, doing what we do,” says Chef it right most Haeringer, excusing of the time.” himself to say “Bon soir, Maman” to his mother, 95, who comes in every evening for veal scaloppini, a longstanding ritual that began when she ran the office at the restaurant for 25 years. While the menu remains rooted in the classics, Chef Haeringer is very much a modern chef. He knows, for instance, that L’Auberge Chez François is in America’s top 100 restaurants on, and he regularly scans for customers’ comments. More importantly, he knows that part of being a modern chef means being smart in business. As a balance to the deliciously indulgent L’Auberge menu, he has carved out a little weinstube on the main restaurant’s lower level, where diners can enjoy simpler brasserie creations that are easier on the constitution as

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photos top left and center courtesy of L'Auberge Chez françois; top right by françois haubtmann; bottom courtesy of stacey pryce of cute e's photography.

well as the wallet; more, shall we say, accessible dishes, like boeuf Bourguignon, moules frites (mussels with French fries), even Alsatianstyle white pizzas, as well as dishes made from handwritten recipes his father brought with him when he first came to America from France in 1947. In fact, Jacques’ Brasserie is an homage to his father, both in menu and in décor, with hand-painted, ceramic-topped tables made for the original L’Auberge Chez François and walls covered with red paisley fabric bought by his father on a trip to France. Also keeping current with modern business

practices, he writes a monthly newsletter that goes out to more than 15,000 subscribers. He has published two cookbooks (The Chez François Cookbook in 1991 and Two for Tonight in 2001) and had a cooking show (also called Two for Tonight) for three seasons on PBS beginning in 2000. And this month, he makes his 10th appearance as a guest chef on NBC’s Today show. But as the old saw goes, “Plus ça change, plus c’est la même chose”—the more things change, From left: Rack of lamb; lobster and asparagus salad; Chef Haeringer with his father.

the more they remain the same. At L’Auberge, rest assured ... classical French cuisine is alive and well. And it’s in no danger of disappearing. “You do a few new things, but you keep customers by giving them what they want,” says Chef Haeringer. “The fact that we’ve been here all these years attests to the fact that we get it right most of the time.” Besides, he adds, “I don’t know how to do anything else.” Would he want to? He thinks for a few seconds before answering. “We all have those days.” ❉

Tastings & Tip-offs If you have news of personnel changes, restaurant openings or closings, events or special menus, please tell us by writing to third annual gallery crawl Fine arts meet food arts Oct. 3, when folks load buses for Williamsburg’s 3rd Annual Gallery Crawl. Crawlers will be ferried from gallery to gallery in Merchants Square, the Bed and Breakfast District, the Arts District and High Street, enjoying wine and hors d’oeuvres (and art) at every stop. $40 per person, 5-10 p.m., 757-220-6104, the curious grape in Arlington now has a Sparkling Sunday brunch, which features global cuisine alongside festive cocktails (including three signature riffs on the Bloody Mary) and suggested wine pairings by the glass. Executive Chef Eric McKamey has a reputation for forging interesting combinations. One spring dish, for instance, saw gnocchi sharing a plate with fiddlehead ferns, morel mushrooms and ramps. This

is the spot for the unexpected or the unusual. Aren’t you curious? 703-6718700, taste tidewater tours Virginians love a good tour. And Taste Tidewater Tours is all things food and beverage, offering customized beer, wine and food tours. The company has partnered with a number of area breweries, wineries, farms and restaurants to put together group tours to takers’ tastes. Farm and food tours are only $20, plus meal costs; winery tours are $99 per person, plus cost of tastings at each winery; and brew tours are $65, plus cost of flight tastings. So what are you actually paying for? A good designated driver, informative commentary, and a comfy ride from door to door in an executive coach. 757-430-TOUR or

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port city brewing company in Alexandria is gearing up for Oktoberfest … not the event, the seasonal beer that’s been so popular in the past. PCBC is rereleasing its malty lager in early September. But if you’re one of those who loved the traditional Marzenstyle lager last year, better hop to it. The brewery is only producing two 90-barrel batches. $11.99 a six-pack. mussel bar and grill Chef Robert Wiedmaier has crossed the border into Virginia to open his third Mussel Bar & Grill in Arlington’s Ballston area. This one is in a retooled car dealership where the industrial accoutrements add a certain je ne sais quoi. Steel cargo containers are now individual bathrooms, and construction crane pursehooks at the bar and bare light bulbs hanging from twisted ropes add to its industrial charm. But don’t forget why you came. It’s all about the mussels.


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E A T .

S H O P .

R E L A X .

MAKE YOUR FRIENDS GREEN WITH ENVY (it is the color of the season after all!)

Aldo’s Ristorante

Jos A. Bank

Talbots Women

(757) 491-1111

(757) 425-0071

(757) 491-2175

Anthony Vince Nail Spa


The Full Cup

(757) 226-0900

Mizuno Japanese Restaurant

Apricot Lane Boutique (757) 422-5263

Bean There Coffeehouse (757) 422-5282

Chico’s (757) 417-0744

Closet Envy (757) 962-8837

Please join us for a Trunk Show featuring Suzy Landa and her beautiful collection. Friday October 25th and Saturday October 26th S







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Simply Selma’s 1860 Laskin Road, #119 Virginia Beach, VA 23454


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Ocean Palm (757) 437-7256

Pure English Couture Bridal (757) 631-9810

Simply Selma’s (757) 428-2885


(757) 226-9441

The Mole Hole (757) 417-7256

The Precious Gem (757) 428-1117

The Shoe Box (757) 437-2303

Williams Sonoma (757) 428-8908

Yves Delorme (757) 425-6963

(757) 422-1375

Talbots (757) 428-4442

For leasing information call (757) 422-8839 1860 Laskin Road, Virginia Beach 23454

Once in a Blue Moon? Sensational sapphires. True blues. Like clear skies and deep oceans. Surrounded by diamonds, shining stars. The artistry of Reggie Akdogan. Only here.

Merchants Square, Williamsburg, 757-220-1115 • La Promenade, Virginia Beach, 757-428-1117 •

• Like us on Facebook

Store hours are: Monday–Saturday 10 am to 6 pm. Some stores are open later and on Sunday!

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RICHMOND BALLET 2013 – 2014 SeaSon OctOber 1 – 6, 2013 Studio one Phoenix RiSing (World Premiere) - Philip neal BoW out - Val Caniparoli

NOvember 1 – 3, 2013 30 th anniVeRSaRy CeleBRation with Richmond Symphony SeRenade - george Balanchine FanCy FRee - Jerome Robbins the Rite oF SPRing - Salvatore aiello

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30Years the state ballet allet of virginia

Stoner Winslett Artistic Director

December 14 – 23, 2013 the nutCRaCkeR - Stoner Winslett with Richmond Symphony

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march 25 – 30, 2014 Studio tWo neW WoRkS FeStiVal

may 13 – 18, 2014 Studio thRee WoRld PReMieRe - Ma Cong lineS SquaRed - Jessica lang

30th anniversary season sponsors: AltriA, VirginiA Commission For the Arts, nAtionAl endowment For the Arts And west BroAd Audi e. rhodes And leonA B. CArpenter FoundAtion, Arts And CulturAl Funding Consortium (City oF riChmond, hAnoVer County And henriCo County) And riChmond BAllet ChoreogrAphers Fund sponsors for 2013 production of the nutcracker: dominion resourCes the riChArd s. reynolds FoundAtion

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8/23/13 5:11 PM

Haute Veg

M ph oto g r a ph y by m a rk edwa rd atk inso n

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food by chef j frank

styling by tracey lee


8/22/13 3:07 PM


from a tent at woodstock to a table at bouley, meatless meals have earned caché

miss granola, if you f o ll fi r u yo ad e devil If you’ve h ink seitan is th th u yo if relent: t, fa ispy steak long, it’s time to so st ju m is the crackle of cr n ia s, meatless resisted vegetar pages of menu k ve ac u’ b yo e if th … to n) fluences er relegated (it’s wheat glute ients, global in s own. No long d it re g to in in c e ti m o co ex h ine has it is hot. oughts. Wit Vegetarian cuis e is as haute as re than afterth in o s from is m cu e n ar ia s ar ay d et veg ated harrumph s, er p ef as ch d ex dishes these te d ca an u s ffering by friend e twists by ed e restaurants o ct to eye-rolling ar je and imaginativ b ly n su o e t o er N w . t lic u dining o meals. bivore pub o, vegetarians as meat-centric counts the her n is d io at at er th d t si n en m Not that long ag co ablish of equal se) to ity the poor est choices worthy e at a chop hou m ss re le p at e su s m n g servers. Now, p ig in d re vi ne who ine ety, they’re pro vegetarian cuis efs (including o w ch o h ia e in g vegetarian vari se ir ll V u’ y h yo rt otewo d we think and We asked five n pe. Try one, an ci re n ia ar arts, the minds e et h g e ve th te in ri vo ce fa la share a n, earning its p ste. has gone uptow ’s arbiters of ta ay d to f o s e at the pal Left: Lentil wheat berry couscous cakes. Here: Sherry and roasted garlic sauce ‘à la tegame’ with pasta. o cto b e r 2 0 1 3

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Caramelized eggplant with sprouted lentils, tofu and radishes.

Grilled Provenรงalstyle vegetables.

Left: Darryl Starr, Gwen Murray and Michelle Moriarty. Above: Artichoke bargoule.

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8/22/13 3:10 PM

Local Chop & Grill House

Clifton Inn

Harrisonburg −

Charlottesville −

Lentil Wheat Berry Couscous Cakes Chef Ryan Zale

2 cups couscous 2 cups wheat berries 2 cups lentils 1 quart oyster mushrooms, thinly sliced 2 carrots, grated 1 white onion, diced small 1 head garlic, minced 3 sprigs each, rosemary, oregano, finely chopped 2 bunches flat leaf parsley, finely chopped 3 lemons, juice and zest 1 teaspoon red pepper flakes 2 tablespoons smoked or regular paprika ¾ cup Dijon mustard salt and pepper to taste Fill pan with just enough water to cover the cous cous and heat to about 180 degrees. Pour water over cous cous. Cover for 10 minutes. When all liquid is absorbed, fluff with a fork and reserve. Cook lentils in water until soft, about 20 minutes, adding water as necessary. Cook wheat berries in water until soft, roughly an hour, adding water as necessary. Sauté onions, herbs, mushrooms and carrot in a bit of olive oil over medium heat until transparent. Add garlic, and cook over low heat for 3 more minutes, then remove from heat. Drain lentils and wheat berries and mash them with a potato masher, your hands or a whisk. In a large bowl, combine all the ingredients, and season with salt and pepper to taste. Mix until well combined. Shape the mixture into patties that fit in the palm of your hand. Coat in breadcrumbs and lightly sear in butter. Heat to serve. Serve with a sauté of cherry tomatoes, kalamata olives, roasted red peppers, basil and arugula. Serves 4

Ashby Inn Paris −

Artichoke Bargoule Chef Tarver King

1 quart dry white wine 1 cup white distilled vinegar 1 quart vegetable broth 4 lemons with zest ½ large onion ½ head garlic 2-3 stalks celery ½ cup olive oil ½ bunch parsley ½ bunch tarragon ½ bunch chervil ½ bunch chives 3 fresh bay leaves 1 cup pitted luques olives 3 very large artichokes ½ lemon for zesting salt and white pepper to taste (Be a tad aggressive with the salt to offset the sourness.) Put all ingredients except the parsley, chervil, lemon for zesting and chives into a heavy bottomed tall stockpot. Bring to a light boil and turn off heat. Let sit on the stove for two hours to infuse. As quickly as possible (to prevent browning), clean the artichokes of their green leaves and the furry choke. While keeping the stem attached, peel off its tough outer layer. After each artichoke is cleaned, add it to the broth to prevent browning. When all artichokes are cleaned and in broth, turn the heat up to a simmer and cook them until the tip of a knife can penetrate them easily. When cooked, turn off the heat, and add all the herbs. Let cool to room temperature. To Serve: Using a slotted spoon, remove the artichokes and plate each with some of the olives and aromatic goodies. Ladle over them some of the broth, some lemon zest, and serve with super hot crusty bread, butter, and buttery white wine. Serves 3

Caramelized Eggplant with Sprouted Lentils, Tofu and Radishes Chef Tucker Yoder For Sprouted Lentils: 1 cup dried lentils 3 cups water Soak lentils overnight in water. Drain and rinse. Spread on a cookie sheet. Cover with cheesecloth and let sit at room temperature for at least six hours. Rinse lentils and spread on cookie sheet for another night. At this point, you should see a little sprout coming out. If not, re-rinse, lay out and cover for one more day. This should not take longer than three days. For Charred Eggplant Purée: 1 large eggplant 1 tablespoon lemon juice 2 tabelspoons extra virgin olive oil salt and pepper to taste Roast eggplant over an open flame until it is fully charred all over. Place in 350-degree oven and cook all the way through, approximately 10-15 minutes. Purée everything until smooth. Season with lemon juice, olive oil and salt and pepper. To Plate: 2 medium Japanese eggplants 1 tablespoon blend of olive oil and canola oil 4 tablespoons charred eggplant purée 4 tablespoons Twin Oaks tofu 4 tablespoons sprout lentils 1 teaspoon fresh lavender 1 teaspoon malt vinegar 2 teaspoons extra virgin olive oil 2 French breakfast radishes, very thinly sliced

Williamsburg −

Grilled Provençal-Style Vegetables Chef Daniel Abid

4 green zucchini 12 sweet bell peppers 24 large green asparagus 6 large heirloom tomatoes 20 baby carrots 3 fennel bulbs 3 Portobello mushrooms 12 button mushrooms 18 fingerling potatoes 12 green onions 1 head of fresh garlic Clean and dry all vegetables. Marinate all except potatoes in olive oil. Precook potatoes in water with kosher salt. Peel the potatoes, and slice them. Place them on an oven pan, and bake with olive oil until golden. Tomato Jam or “Confiture”

Slice eggplant into 12 slices. Season with salt. Heat oil in a pan until very hot. Add eggplant and sear on one side until golden brown, 1 to 2 minutes, then flip eggplant. Add lavender and remove pan from heat. Place a small dollop of charred eggplant purée on a plate. Toss lentils with oil and vinegar. Place a small pile of sprouted lentils next to eggplant purée. Place tofu on opposite side of lentils. Shingle three slices of eggplant across the top of everything. Arrange radishes around plate.

paprika Herbes de Provence 1 large red onion 8 large plum tomatoes 3 cloves of garlic 4 tablespoons of light brown sugar sea salt, black pepper and peppercorn for seasoning to taste

Serves 4

Peel the tomato, onions, and garlic. Preheat a saute pan for 30 seconds, then add some olive oil and sauté the diced onions, chopped garlic, paprika and Herbes de Provence for about 2 minutes without any excessive coloration. Add the tomatoes, and cook at low heat for 25 minutes. Add salt, peppercorns, black pepper and brown sugar, and cook for another 10 minutes. Adjust the seasoning to taste. Then blend with immersion blender.

Local Roots Restaurant Roanoke −

Sherry and Roasted Garlic Sauce à la Tegame with Pasta Chef Nathaniel Sloan

Basil Oil

1 cup shallots, diced small 2 ounces garlic confit 3 tablespoons Local Roots City Farm arugula pesto ½ cup plus 1 tablespoon sherry Amontillado 2 cups Local Roots City Farm cherry tomatoes 1 ounce Italian parsley chiffonade 2 ½ ounces Chapel Hill Calvander cheese, peeled or grated 2 tablespoons fresh lemon zest 7 ounces dried handmade pasta 1 quart plus 2 ounces vegetable stock kosher salt to taste Freshly cracked black peppercorns to taste 2 tablespoons organic grapeseed oil 2 tablespoons organic California olive oil

4 ounces fresh basil 2 cloves of garlic 2 cups of extra virgin olive oil sea salt, black pepper

Over medium-high heat, cook shallots and sweat until translucent and tender. Add garlic confit, crushing cloves with wooden spoon, and cook until a nutty and roasted aroma is released; reduce to medium heat. Add cherry tomatoes and cook until skins begin to blister; remove tomatoes from pan, reserving for later. Add dried pasta to pan and immediately deglaze with sherry amontillado; reduce liquid until the alcohol aroma ceases, and deglaze once more with the vegetable stock. Continue to reduce liquid and cook pasta, stirring occasionally with a wooden spoon or pasta fork; this will thicken the sauce as the liquid reduces and the pasta cooks. Just before pasta is ‘al dente,’ incorporate the blistered cherry tomatoes, arugula pesto, parsley and lemon zest. Add salt and pepper to taste, and add olive oil to finish rounding out flavors.

Finely slice the 10 cloves of peeled garlic, and roast in the oven at 400 degrees.

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Le Yaca


Blend together fresh basil leaves and garlic while slowly adding the extra virgin olive oil. Add sea salt and black pepper. Balsamic Oil 2 cups Modena balsamic vinegar reduction roasted garlic 10 cloves garlic, peeled Parmesan cheese

Evenly spread and cover the bottom of a deep stew pot with the tomato confiture. Place the vegetables over the bed of tomato confiture. Drizzle balsamic vinegar reduction and basil olive oil over the vegetables. Sprinkle the thinly sliced roasted garlic over the vegetables, and finish off with a few shaves of Parmesan cheese. Place lid of pot slightly ajar so that contents within continue to absorb seasoning, and then serve. Serves 6

virginia living

8/23/13 1:39 PM


Destination Dublin

Walking the Wicklow Way, against the elements, toward Ireland’s capital. —T r i c i a P e a r s a l l—


tomping through the

slick crust of a stubborn April snow, my husband, Jack, and I clambered up the flanks of Fairy Castle under a churning Irish, light-noir drama produced by lateday storm clouds. This would be the last steep climb, according to our Wicklow Way walking notes. Glancing up at the rock cairn on the summit marking a Bronze Age passage tomb, we headed north following the trail over a rolling ridge of heather, and there it was, lying at our feet, the city of Dublin at the edge of the Irish Sea, aka “the fleshpot” in the Wicklow Way Map Guide. Through the haze I could make out Dublin Bay and Howth Head,

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under the heavily trafficked M50 and onto an idyllic path running through Marlay Park. Past a handcarved fairy tree, finally spilling out in front of the Georgian manor, Marlay House—the finish line for the Wicklow Way, one of Ireland’s most scenic long-distance trails. We snapped photos and hustled out the park gates to catch the #16 bus to O’Connell Street. Hopping aboard, we suddenly realized we had correct change for only one passenger—panic! The dour-faced driver slyly waved us both on, and we hunkered down, grateful and exhausted, for the ride into the city concentrate where we traded forest paths and solitude for concrete sidewalks bustling with chic

a peninsula northeast of the city. I could also see the docks, the Liverpool Ferry, a green dome and what looked to be a power station. It wasn’t exactly El Dorado, but it signaled our transition from hiking 20-plus kilometers per day for six days along Southeast Ireland’s soulful Wicklow mountains, finding sanctuary each evening in the pampered comfort of welcoming B&Bs, to full immersion in Dublin’s glut of Irish culture: the Book of Kells, James Joyce, St. Patrick’s Cathedral, the gold treasury at the National Museum, the Dead Zoo and a new play at Abbey Theatre. Only seven kilometers more to go—a steep descent from Fairy Castle to a blacktop road, then


shoppers and red-haired girls in high-heeled boots and short skirts. My husband and I suffer from disparate travel philosophy syndrome. I would rather hike and camp, feasting on a region’s natural wonders, whereas he prefers to visit museums and focus on art, architecture and historical gems, reveling in the cultural legacy of a country’s people. In Ireland, we satisfied both desires on our selfguided walking adventure, which combined over 100 kilometers along the Wicklow Way and two full days in Dublin. It included B&Bs and pubs along the route, a service to ferry our luggage from place to place and maps and straightforward walking instructions, all thanks to Christopher and Teresa Stacey of Ireland’s Footfalls Walking Holidays. We landed in Dublin and followed their printed directions, like a treasure hunt. From an on-time, six-hour crossAtlantic flight, we walked directly onto a bus just pulling away for the 30-minute ride to Connolly Rail Station. There, like clockwork, the ticket agent immediately put us on

photos by tricia pearsall

Kevin’s Kitchen, set against a mountain vista in Glendalough.

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a departing southbound train. After a spectacularly scenic trip along the Irish Sea coast, we arrived in Rathdrum, County Wicklow, a halfday before expected. Dropping our bags at the Stirabout Lane B&B, a cozy cottage fronting Rathdrum’s narrow thoroughfare, we hiked down to Avondale House and Forest Park, the home of Charles Stewart Parnell (1846-1891), the betrayed tragic hero, whose life typified Ireland for James Joyce. Born in Avondale House, this aristocratic Protestant landowner organized the landless class into seeking land reform, and, as a member of the British Parliament, initiated the first movement toward Home Rule. Alas, his career collapsed when it was revealed he had produced three children in a love affair with his friend’s wife. Though they married after her divorce, he died soon after in disgrace. Built in 1777, his home is the archetypal Irish Georgian country house, elegant and restrained, but also containing an American room dedicated to his mother and grandfather, Admiral Charles

Clockwise from hike through the Stewart, commander of USS left: Glendalough government’s Constitution during the War cemetery and tower; lush non-native of 1812. The loquacious house Glenmalure Pub fir and spruce steward started singing along to and B&B; sheep plantations, the the obligatory video’s background pasture near rotating cash music, insisting we join his Knockree Hill. cows that resulted rousing a cappella rendition of from these early experiments. the traditional ballad, “Oh, Have Christopher and Teresa appeared You Been to Avondale.” Spanning at 8 a.m. on Easter Sunday to 530 acres, the forests of Avondale give us a ride to the iron bridge were first planted by Parnell as west of Aughrim, our Wicklow heritage tree preserves. When Way trailhead, as Christopher, a the government purchased the legendary Irish walking guide, estate in 1904, it was turned into a was off to check out an alternate forestry school with experimental mountain route in the same area. silviculture plots in an attempt With no dispatch, we slugged to quickly reforest Ireland’s then uphill northward along the eastern denuded bogland. Centuries of spine of the Wicklow Mountains harvesting timber for shipbuilding, for a short first-day 15 kilometers for producing the charcoal needed towards Dublin, arriving that to smelt iron ore, plus clearing evening at the Glenmalure Lodge. of large pasture and farm tracts Over a couple of pints of Guinness, for plantations on top of natural we plumbed trail beta from a climate anomalies resulted in the Dutch girl finishing her hike. She disappearance of 99 percent of warned of icy spots from last week’s Irish woodlands before 1900. The freakishly-late spring snowfall, but most hearty and enduring of these we had little trouble the next day early test specimens turned out to on the pass toward Glendalough be redwoods from California and where we shared our bag lunch Sitka spruce from British Columbia. prepared by the Lodge with a For the next five days, we would

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member of the Glen of Imaal Red Cross Mountain Rescue and his ‘rescue’ Cocker puppy in a gulley huddled out of the wind. Cautiously navigating down the slippery ridge, we were relieved to reach a planked trail at the edge of the Spinc, the Irish word for pointed hill, a high crag which plummets down into the steeply carved Glendalough valley, one of Ireland’s finest specimens of a glacial trench embracing two long tranquil lakes. To protect the tundra-like bog from being tramped by the thousands of hikers in this walking-culture nation, the Irish Army brought in studded rail ties in 2002 to create this remarkable boardwalk running all the way along the ridge and down some 600 steep steps to the approach valley below. Foul weather or fare, it seems that a brisk walk is inherent in the daily Irish routine. Ireland boasts an endless network of well-worn walking paths from multiday waymarked trails and national looped walks to coastal hikes and inner-city strolls. Since it was a bank holiday during our visit, families were out walking in

virginia living

8/23/13 1:42 PM


Guinness Storehouse Gravity Bar.

Here: National Museum of IrelandArchaeology. Below: The Temple Bar in Dublin.

droves, many hiking up the 600 steps. Despite the damp cold and the difficulty of the climb, there was no whining, not even from the wee ones. Early Christian monks, in particular a hermit of noble birth named Kevin, found in the Glendalough valley a contemplative haven. Called the St. Francis of Ireland, St. Kevin (498-618) retreated to a Bronze-Age cave, which is still visible across the Upper Lake. His miracles and teachings soon garnered so many disciples and pilgrims that, by the ninth century, Glendalough had grown into Ireland’s largest monastic community. The fact that most of their imposing stone buildings still stand, in spite of Viking invasions and attacks by Henry VIII’s forces, is a testament to their construction and design and national reverence for the site. Towering over the entire city is the 110-foot high stone round tower. Often used as a lookout, it was actually a campanile used to call the monks to daily prayers. St. Kevin’s Kitchen, which is actually a church, is the monastic city’s signature edifice with its stone pitched roof supporting a small conical belfry

Holidays, past the Guinness estate, tower. Allegedly, locals referred Luggala, near Lough Tay, around to the tower as a chimney, and the stone marker celebrating the since only kitchens had chimneys, founder of the Wicklow Way, and it was called a “kitchen.” Staring on to the flanks of the absurdly at this early medieval monastic windy Djouce Mountain. Leaning cluster backlit by the two long lakes into the face of the gale, stooped leading up the rugged valley to over like two old people, we were sheer cliffs, I could easily imagine trying to stay upright, when a local these stunning surroundings as a walker wearing just a thin jacket compelling lure toward conversion came flying by of pagans. As evidenced by the rocking side to crowds that day, this sacred site My husband side at a fast continues to be one of Ireland’s and I suffer clip—what we prime destinations. the With rare sun overhead, we from disparate dubbed Wicklow dance. continued our trek up the valley Stopping, he floor under the Spinc to explore travel yelled over the the old lead mines that, starting wind’s roar, around 1800, had operated for 150 philosophy “Lovely day. years. Only building foundations, syndrome. Not a place I’d a few pieces of machinery and like to spend much time.” As we a mineshaft in the cliff remain descended the mountain in his as testament to what must have wake, a local young mountain biker been round-the-clock drudgery. headed up, peddling into the fury of We examined what I think was the blow. a crusher and the stone housing In contrast to the shapely moody for a waterwheel powered by the mountains and the fairytale villages oft-flooding stream feeding the poised at crossroads where our lakes, certainly a sturm-und-drang little B&B rooms (add-ons to private operation in stark contrast to the homes) came complete with multimeditative religious realm below. sausaged and grilled-tomato Irish From Glendalough, we hiked over breakfasts, I found Dublin to be as Scarr Mountain to Roundwood, cast in film and fiction, seeming home base for Footfalls Walking virginia living



almost like a disciplined stone and green caricature of itself. It’s a dense mini-metropolis, with Dubliners embraced by a cloak of down-home quiet, honest kindness; wickedly funny folks who waste no words and are genuinely helpful to a fault. Our first evening, we stumbled on The Celt, a pub on Talbot Street north of the River Liffey. Crammed inside were locals as well as a few tourists. We had settled down to dinner and a pint, when a couple of men seated next to us, 70-somethings dressed in coat and tie, broke into bellowing Gaelic harmony. No one noticed them or the two outlandishly garish crones nearby, well into their cups, who kept hitting on the guitarist as he was packing up to leave. The waiter navigated the crowd like a wirewalker, presenting my chips and fish—sautéed, not battered— with mock aplomb. I gave it three notches above regular bar fare. Jack had our two Dublin days meticulously programmed with walking guide and map, so when the front gates to Trinity College were closed for the annual Trinity Ball, the end of term black-tie all nighter, I thought our Irish luck had run out. Fortunately, we found

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top left photo courtesy of fáilte ireland

Clockwise from above left: Front Square, Trinity College Dublin; Dubliner boarding a bus; sheep in Glenmalure.

an entrance under a building on Nassau Street and made our way to the Trinity College Library. Founded by Queen Elizabeth I in 1592, Trinity College was modeled after the universities of Oxford and Cambridge, though it has remained a one-college university. Its library, however, is the legal-deposit library for Ireland and houses over 4.5 million printed books and rare and significant manuscripts including the famed eighth-century Book of Kells. The page of Kells on exhibit was exquisite but, like going to the Louvre just to view the Mona Lisa, one finds the essence of an institution is often not the main attraction; for us it was the 65 meter Long Room upstairs, stacked with 200,000 of Ireland’s oldest volumes. The arched ceiling and alcoves, the busts of Irish legends, the honey-colored, waxed-wood bookshelves alphabetically lettered in gold and the book ladders simply

museum, with its million species, is a feast of stuffed specimens of the natural world: polar bears, tigers, a fin whale, giraffes, apes, humans and ancient Irish elk skeletons. It is a catalog of zoology in a quiet, curious setting. As it was almost next-door, we stopped in at the National Gallery of Ireland and managed to get sucked into the European masterworks and sketchbooks of Jack B. Yeats, William Butler’s brother. My Jack suggested we then go to Christchurch Cathedral for Evensong. He was tiring, so we asked about a bus. A women standing nearby turned and said, “It’s ONLY a 10-minute walk.” Duly embarrassed, we hoofed it, only to find the cathedral closed for shooting a movie about Mary, Queen of Scots. Instead, we walked farther to St. Patrick’s Cathedral, discovering the grave of Jonathan Swift, the intriguing staircase to the organ loft and the choir

defined the importance of Ireland’s literary heritage. Feeling the heady glow of that legacy, we kept on down Kildare Street to the National Museum of Ireland to see the massive collection of prehistoric gold artifacts. Not only were the sheer numbers of neckpieces and adornments overwhelming, but the sophisticated skill required to craft such objects was amazing, particularly the miniature gold Broighter boat, complete with rigging and oars. Throughout Ireland, farmers plowing land or harvesting bogs have found—as recently as last year—many treasure hoards from the late 19th century. Suffering from objets d’art overload, we walked around the block to the national natural history museum, fondly called the Dead Zoo. Opened by Dr. David Livingstone in 1857, the same “Dr. Livingstone, I presume,” this Victorian-era, cabinet-style

stalls festooned by the swords and helmets of the chivalric Knights of St. Patrick. Boarding a Hop-On Hop-Off bus for our lazy last day, we wandered St. Stephen’s Green before stopping at the Guinness Storehouse for the tour. We leisurely digested our gulp of Dublin, enjoying the 360-degree panorama visible from the top floor Gravity Bar from which I could see the Irish Sea and the Wicklow Mountains. Then we headed back to The Celt for a farewell feast of beef and Guinness stew. This is not the last I’ll see of the Emerald Isle. County Cork is calling, for I need to find the home of my multi-great-grandfather, Darby Regan. Plus, there are 40 more walking trails waiting to be hiked, particularly the Kerry Way, and then I have a distant cousin who recently moved to Ballaghaderreen in County Roscommon. I’m checking for flight deals as I write. ❉

For Hiking Vacation and Trail Information:

Wicklow B&Bs, Lodges, Pubs and Restaurant Highlights:

Bates’ Restaurant, Rathdrum,

Glenmalure Lodge, Glenmalure,

Wicklow Heather Restaurant, Laragh,

Stirabout Lane B&B, Rathdrum,

Lake House B&B, Roundwood,

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For More Information on Ireland:


virginia living

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Welcome to In 2012, Wine Enthusiast Magazine named Virginia among the 10 best wine travel destinations in the entire world, up there with the Veneto region of Italy, Napa Valley in California and the Champagne region of France. The rest of the world was surprised, but we weren’t. Why? There’s more than one reason. It’s Virginia’s Viognier, Cabernet Franc, Cabernet Sauvignon, Petit Verdot and Merlot grapes, and its Bordeaux-style blends, which compare well with the best in the world—as proven at the “Breakfast of Champions” blind taste test, hosted by Steven Spurrier in Richmond last year. It’s Virginia’s seven certified American Viticultural Areas, a designation awarded only to wine regions with distinct terroir. It’s the nearly 200 individual wineries and nearly 30 unique wine trails to be found within our borders. But those who visit the Commonwealth find that it’s also about the variety of landscapes and landmarks they encounter between glasses. The Jefferson Heritage Trail, for example, takes in nine wineries along the foothills of the Blue Ridge Mountains, celebrating Thomas Jefferson, who laid the foundations for Virginia’s vineyard revolution at Monticello, the only place in America to be listed on the World’s Register of Historic Places. Or you can go up high for the Skyline Wine, Dine & Recline Trail, with 22 wineries, plus a whiskey distillery, among your destinations on a 105-mile hike or drive along the edges of the Shenandoah National Park. Or, if you prefer an ocean breeze, there are multiple kayak winery tours available on Virginia’s Eastern Shore, where you paddle to your destination for the next delicious sip. It’s this incredible variety that makes Virginia not just a great wine destination, but a great destination for any activity.


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photography by Ken Wyner

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Nesting Instinct by Kathleen Toler

The One Nest Project in Fauquier County could be the beginning of a revolution in green home design, transforming cold and sterile to stylish and inviting.

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and more. Its compact footprint meant that the foundation required minimal excavation, concrete, heavy equipment and disturbance to its pristine, wooded setting. The home does not include any wood framing, drywall or even ductwork making it more durable and energy efficient, yet faster and simpler to construct and easier to maintain. And Turner’s electricity bill so far, including heating and cooling, is about $40 per month, without using expensive solar or geothermal installations. But the way the home feels and brings people together is just as important to Turner as the way it performs: “We didn’t want to build a supermodern structure that people couldn’t relate to because, in our opinion, that’s where green sometimes goes wrong.” Befitting its countryside setting, the home’s design echoes a red barn and a rusty silo, and evokes the feeling a well-built nest should: cozy and warm with a bird’s-eye view of the landscape. A gravel driveway curves up and around the hill, dotted with butterflies flitting from Queen Anne’s lace to black-eyed Susan. Young river birch trees, bark curling from white trunks, accent the driveway and house. Although the home’s lines are clean and modern, its textures are warm and rustic; wood salvaged from a post-Civil War smokehouse and stone collected from the land lend an aura of authenticity. A shed next to the house shelters a bright red 1953 Farmall H tractor (a 70th birthday gift to Turner’s father) and a deck with the look of rough-hewn slate surrounds the house, creating an inviting place to rest and enjoy the views of Cobbler Mountain. “At night, it looks like New York City out here; the whole mountain lights up with fireflies,” says Turner. Completely imagined and decorated by Turner’s team at GreenSpur, the home’s interior reflects the 38-year-old’s Western heritage—he grew up in Grand Teton National Park on his family’s fifth-generation dude ranch, the Triangle X Ranch (the only ranch within the U.S. National Park Sys-

perched on a hill in the rolling mountains of delaplane,

a rural community in northern Fauquier County, stands a one-of-a-kind home where a quiet revolution may be taking place. “In the U.S., we haven’t had any radical shift in the way we’ve done things for the last 50 years. The materials have changed a little bit, but it’s still the same old stick-built homes we’ve been building for decades,” says Mark Turner, founder of GreenSpur Inc., a design-build construction company based in Falls Church. “There hasn’t been any revolution in that. And there needs to be a revolution in that.” Turner built this 1,100 square-foot home in just 100 days and hopes that it will spur what he says is a long overdue conversation about sustainable building practices and the role sustainable design has to play in making life simpler and less stressful for families. “Homes often own us,” says Turner. “A home should be a retreat, not a job.” For Turner, a sustainable home should not just use energy and resources efficiently; it should also reduce the cost and labor of construction and ongoing maintenance that can sap a family’s time and finances. And it should be built to last—able to withstand fire, mold, decay and natural disasters such as hurricanes, floods and earthquakes. Turner’s home—what he calls the One Nest Project—accomplishes all this virginia living

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photo courtesy of mark turner

Previous page: Dusk at One Nest in Delaplane. Here: Southfacing elevation of the home, showing chassis construction. Below: Mark Turner, during the home’s construction.

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Clockwise from above: Sleeping loft for kids; space-efficient two-story spiral spaircase; the main room is a connected living and dining space.

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tem). In the open living-and-dining room, which feels far larger than the home’s modest footprint should allow, 15-foot corner windows flanking the chimney face ever-changing mountain views, which are complemented by moody, large-scale landscapes painted on-site by Turner’s sister, Kathryn Mapes Turner. (An acclaimed artist, she still lives in Jackson Hole, where she co-owns Trio Fine Art Gallery.) The skull and antlers of an elk from Triangle X Ranch accent the chimney, and three spherical cage lights suspended from hemp ropes add rustic drama to the soaring cathedral ceiling. A “master nest” loft commands a view of the room, taking full advantage of the light and open space from its airy roost. Other details throughout the home recall the West: Oak flooring was repurposed from an old barn, and the bathroom countertops, a desk suspended by hemp ropes and the master bedroom headboard were all built from wood reclaimed from the smokehouse, with vestiges of whitewash and smoke still visible. Turner has masterfully blended old and new with a calming, neutral palette. The kitchen and bathrooms are thoroughly modern with sleek, white cabinets and energy-efficient appliances. The master bath “spa” in the silo of the house packs plenty of romance into 144 square feet, containing an elegant soaking tub, gas fireplace and a large, open shower with a trench drain. The silo also fits two more bedrooms plus a child-sized sleeping loft, all connected by a space-saving spiral staircase. Taking into account the living room couches that convert to beds, Turner claims the house can sleep 10 to 12 guests, making the retreat—a second home for the family whose primary residence is in Falls Church—capacious enough to share with family and friends. Family is, indeed, a driving influence for Turner, and he considers his father, John F. Turner—whom he describes as a hardworking, lifelong environmentalist—his greatest inspiration. His father’s love of the outdoors and passion for protecting land led to his appointment in President George H.W. Bush’s administration as director of the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service, and as assistant secretary of state for oceans and international environmental and scientific affairs under President George W. Bush. virginia living

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The presidential appointments brought the family to Falls Church. Turner attended Bishop O’Connell High School in Arlington and there met his future wife, Annie. They went their separate ways for college: She attended the University of Virginia, and he graduated from the University of Notre Dame in 1997 with a major in philosophy. After two years living the life of a self-described ski bum, working as a fishing guide at Triangle X Ranch and “slinging bags” at Jackson Hole Airport, Turner returned to Virginia to settle down, marry Annie and earn a master’s of business administration from Old Dominion University. “I like the sawdust and the dirt and the roughness of construction,” says Turner. His professional career in the industry took off managing complex, historic commercial renovation projects as vice president of construction for Abdo Development in Washington, D.C., for eight years. However, he felt he was getting away from his love of building intimate spaces, so he founded GreenSpur in 2008. “The mix of good building practices, good economics, good design, but also significant sustainable strategies—that was the niche I was trying to fill with GreenSpur, that middle line of smart and sensible development,” he says. GreenSpur established credibility in the green-building industry as the construction partner on several noteworthy homebuilding projects. One such home in McLean, designed by Cunningham|Quill Architects of Washington, D.C., earned LEED (Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design) Platinum certification from the U.S. Green Building Council, the highest level of certification in the rigorous LEED for Homes program. The home also won a Project of the Year nod from the National Association of Home Builders and was recognized by the U.S. Green Building Council National Capitol Region Chapter in the 2010 Awards of Excellence LEED for Homes category. However, of all the projects on his resume, Turner says, “The One Nest Project is the one I’m most passionate about.” Without a client, Turner had complete creative control with the One Nest Project to rethink the way homes are designed and built. Although the project has evolved in Turner’s mind over five years, he consulted colleagues with green-building experience, including Washington, D.C., firms

photo of wilson courtesy of mark turner

Clockwise from above: Wilson holding a wren’s nest; half-bath in the corner of the third bedroom; master spa in silo tower, with pre-Civil War wood topping the drawers and an ethanol fireplace providing warmth.

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photo bottom left by paul burk

Clockwise from far left: Guest bedroom at the top of the tower has barn doors; the main room has 26-foot-high ceilings; the porch flanks the main room and both sides of the home; Mark, Sarah, Jackie, Annie and Wilson on the porch.

Cunningham|Quill Architects and McGraw Bagnoli Architects. (The One Nest Project name was inspired by a nest the team saw during a design charrette held in a cabin in the West Virginia woods.) After purchasing the wooded property off Route 55 in Delaplane in February 2012, GreenSpur broke ground that November. Instead of digging a traditional foundation, the home rests on concrete piers, reducing the amount of excavation and concrete required. (Portland cement, an essential ingredient in concrete, consumes a lot of energy in its production.) “Once you move dirt, you have to think about how the water behaves. We think that nature has that equation figured out best, so the less we touch that, the less cost,” he explains. “We also want the building to sit lightly on the earth and be respective of its surroundings.” The team topped the concrete piers with a steel platform and framed the entire house in only five days with modular SIPs (structural insulated panels). Commonly used in Asia, SIPs sandwich a thick layer of EPS (expanded polystyrene) insulation between two thinner layers of magnesium oxide wallboard, forming the interior and exterior walls in one piece. Magnesium oxide, a naturally abundant binding material, creates a smooth, cementlike, paintable finish highly resistant to impact, fire, mold, pests and water. Turner claims the home is the first in Virginia and one of few in the country built using magnesium oxide SIPs. The SIPs for the One Nest Project were pre-cut in a factory based on a three-dimensional digital model of the house and shipped in large sections, reducing the labor associated with putting up framing, siding, insulation and drywall in separate steps. Turner likens the house to a Styrofoam cooler coated inside and out with an impervious layer of cement. “Because the envelope is tight and well insulated, it doesn’t take much effort to heat and cool,” he says. For heating and cooling, Turner chose wall-mounted ductless units. Popular in Asia and Europe, energy-efficient ductless systems eliminate temperature loss as air travels through ductwork to registers. Nor is it necessary to take up precious space with ductwork or a mechanical room. In addition, windows high in the stairwell passively draw air up into the silo like a o cto b e r 2 0 1 3

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chimney, so there are many days when air conditioning isn’t needed at all. Although Turner chose low-maintenance materials for the exterior, he would not sacrifice texture or character; he thinks many people won’t embrace green architecture if it feels cold and sterile. The silo is clad with corten steel, its warm patina providing a protective coating. A standingseam metal roof gives the home the character of an old barn, and the deck surrounding the house extends living space with concrete slabs that look convincingly like slate. Completed last April, the One Nest Project made its debut during an open house event held over two days in May. “To get people here to have a glass of wine and see the expressions on their faces and how they interacted with the yard and the space—it was great,” Turner says with satisfaction. That interaction is precisely what Turner believes smart, sustainable design can improve. He acknowledges that working and raising three children (Jackie, 10, Sarah, 8, and Wilson, 5) inside the Beltway can be hectic. His antidote for stress and chaos comes down to one word: simplicity. He believes that a less-is-more philosophy toward design and construction can help families spend less time and money building and maintaining a home and more time with each other. When they come to their new vacation home, the Turners recharge with the magic that the home and its surroundings create—the children spend their days playing soccer on the lawn, climbing trees and splashing in the creek. Evenings center around sharing great food, wine and conversation with friends. “Architecture plays a big role in encouraging moments like that,” he says. “To me, a green structure has got to be inspiring. If you live in a sustainable home, it should be a place where you’re happy, and it encourages healthy lifestyles.” The Turners’ family retreat will also serve to showcase GreenSpur’s sustainable building practices. He plans to host more gatherings so that others can experience his brand of simple, sustainable living. Although the One Nest Project may go on the market someday, he says, “We’ve fallen in love with it, so it would be hard to let it go.” ❉


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r AF

of One’s Own By Christine Stoddard


irginians have homesteaded from the start, whether their property has been on the scale of Berkeley Plantation or the size of a yard in Old Town Alexandria.

The Virginian tradition of farming has produced crunchy peanuts, succulent hams and bountiful vegetables for generations. But you don’t have to aspire to a full-time agricultural career to grow tomatoes for homemade pasta sauce or peaches for the best cobbler on the block. All you need is a little land, a little time and a little love. Micro-farming has taken off across America, and there’s no better place to try it than in your personal corner of the Old Dominion. Virginia’s temperate climate allows for a variety of plants—both edible and decorative—to flourish. Imagine pumpkins you grew yourself to carve up for Halloween or curly willow for your original Thanksgiving centerpiece. You could even get in on the urban poultry movement and wake up to fresh eggs every morning or cook your own Christmas goose. Depending on your budget, your location and your creativity, you could enjoy anything from a bitty herb garden to a mini orchard right outside your window. It’s mostly a matter of persistence and some tried and true methods. This is your chance to give your green thumb a go. Make hay, as they say, while the sun shines. Our special Home & Garden section is a resource guide for Virginians who want to

turn a new leaf and become more self-sufficient. These listings for local experts in landscaping, remodeling and design can help you get started on the micro farm of your dreams. APPLIANCES ON LAKESIDE One of Richmond’s largest independent appliance stores, Appliances on Lakeside at 5418 Lakeside Ave prides itself on friendly, knowledgeable customer service from appliance pros that can solve all your appliance needs. They stock the top brands of appliances: Miele, Kitchen Aid, Full line GE Dealer, Whirlpool, Speed Queen, SubZero, Wolf and carry parts for all brands. (804) 266-7621 or

ASSURED COMFORT BED Assured Comfort Bed is an adjustable bed that promotes wellness, relieves occasional discomfort and supports better rest. The bed features a remote-controlled, whisper-soft motor for smooth transitions from sitting to reclining or reclining to sitting. Reposition yourself for watching TV, reading, the occasional sinus infection or heartburn. Exclusive headboards and premium mattresses add to custom built frames. MADE IN VIRGINIA! (866) 852-2337 or

DAVEY TREE Davey believes that trees, like many things, should be left to the experts. That’s why this employee-owned company is run by certified-arborists. So whether you’re looking for someone to baby your maple or magnolia, you can trust Davey’s commitment to delivering exceptional client service no matter the scale of the project you have in mind. Residential services include tree health check-ups, removal, lightning protection, fertilization, planting and transplanting, pruning and trimming, among others. (703) 459-9164 (Chantilly) (804) 477-8108 (Richmond) or

DEE DAVID & CO Nationally recognized award-winning designer Dee David, CKD, CBD, brings more than 39 years of experience to Dee David & Co. LLC, specializing in residential kitchen and bath remodeling. David Dee & Co. brings a comfortable, oneon-one approach to the process, working with homeowners, builders, architects, and ‘Class A’ contractors in Northern Virginia and the Northern Neck; guiding each space from design to completion. Dee David & Co. is a design and build firm that believes no challenge is too small or too large for its team. (703) 560-6601 or

THE HOME SPECIALTY STORE Voted "Best of Virginia" in Home Décor in 2012 and 2013, it's a showroom like no place else! Fine quality, handcrafted furniture, fixtures, hardware, lamps, lighting, sculpture, art, florals, mirrors, house plaques, gifts and bath accessories, combined with old-fashioned face-to-face customer service have made this place a landmark in Northern Virginia for over 17 years. Plan a visit today and meet the owners, Wayne and Lynn Baker, who work the showroom floor daily. Closed Sundays and Mondays. (571) 258-0880 or

DULLES ELECTRIC SUPPLY Need lighting inspiration for a new home or upcoming renovation? Visit Dulles Electric Supply’s NEW website and download its FREE home lighting guide! Or visit the 12,000 square foot lighting showroom, featuring the nation’s largest Schonbek Crystal gallery, a recessed lighting applications lab, an outdoor lighting room and over 80 manufacturers on display. Dulles Electric has serviced the DMV area since 1985, providing the finest selection of lighting fixtures, and is the mid-Atlantic’s largest lighting showroom.

JANET BROWN INTERIORS OF CARYTOWN Janet Brown Interiors of Carytown is a destination shop for unique gifts and interior design. The retail shop is stocked full of an amazing variety of pillows, furniture, antiques, ceramics, linens, art and lamps, as well as a wonderful selection of posh baby clothing and gifts. The new full-service design studio at 3150 West Cary Street is an extensive resource library. Expert staff looks forward to assisting you in choosing the perfect design or accessory for all styles and budgets.

(703) 450-5700 or

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FACTORY ANTIQUE MALL Discover an endless collection of unique antiques from around the world at one of the largest antique malls in America, and still growing. A perfect destination for decorating any room in the home, outside or finding that one special, conservationstarting piece. From 19th-century American and European furniture, to the 1960s retro dining set you have looked everywhere for. All on one floor. Your one stop shopping destination.

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O Rare


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In the coastal village of Irvington, this striking, custom design with extensive stonework, cedar shakes, white trim, assorted decks and porches is reminiscent of a rambling, early seaside resort. The style provides the allure of times past, yet blends innovative details of today’s lifestyle to create an inspired river residence. With two integrated living areas, pool and pier, this distinctive home may be shared between friends or enjoyed as a retreat for family gatherings. $2,750,000

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Roanoke, Virginia

10,000 sq ft waterfront luxury home on 5+ acres. Six bedrooms, six baths, and in-law suite w/ kitchen. Detailed craftsmanship w/superior custom moldings, ceilings, marble and hardwood flooring. Panoramic views throughout. Outdoor oasis has a huge party patio, 1000 sq ft pool house w/granite bar w/stainless fixtures/appliances, bathrooms w/shower, and in ground swimming pool surrounded by cool decking. Protected shorelines. Sandy beach. Deepwater docks/piers and massive boathouse w/lifts and observation/party deck. Easy anytime access to the Chesapeake Bay and the Atlantic Ocean. Impossible to replicate this property in the Mid-Atlantic region! Secure, private, quiet seclusion yet only minutes to Interstate 64. Beautiful sun and moonrises; sun and moonsets. Can be bundled with adjacent 2,500 sq ft caretaker/guest house and 5,000 sq ft shop/garage. Additional deepwater waterfront acreage also available. Entrepreneurs! Combined commercial/residential zoning provides income producing opportunities! $3.2 million.

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REAL ESTATE AUCTION Maridor Bed & Breakfast

Friday, September 20 • 2:00 PM

SWEEPING SWEEPING SWEEPING SWEEPING BLUE SWEEPING BLUE RIDGE BLUE BLUE RIDGE RIDGE VIEWS RIDGE VIEWS VIEWS VIEWS VIEWS BRADFORD BRADFORD BRADFORD BRADFORD BRADFORD HALL HALLHALL HALL HALL Exceptional Exceptional Exceptional Exceptional English Exceptional English Country-style EnglishEnglish Country-style Country-style Country-style residenceresidence residence residence residence Magnificent Magnificent Magnificent Magnificent Magnificent 180-degree 180-degree 180-degree 180-degree 180-degree BlueBlue Ridge Ridge Blue Blue Blue MounMounRidge Ridge RidgeMounMounMounnestled nestled onnestled nestled 42 private onon42 nestled 42acres private private onin 42desirable acres private acresin acres indesirable Blandedesirable in desirable BlandeBlandeBlandetain Blandeviews tain tain tain abound views views views abound from abound abound from thisfrom this from from wonderful wonderful this this thiswonderful wonderful wonderful 93 93 93 93 93 justmar, mar, 8mar, miles just just just8south 8mar, miles miles just ofsouth Charlottesville. 8south milesofsouth ofCharlottesville. Charlottesville. of Charlottesville. Built acre Built Built Built estate acre acre acre nestled estate estate estate nestled innestled nestled theinheart theinin in heart the of the theFarmington ofheart heart heart Farmington ofof ofFarmington Farmington Farmington Incredible Opportunity — Property Will be Sold at Bid of $675,000 ormar, More!! 2007,c.the c.c.2007, 2007, 2007, 5 bedroom the the c. 2007, 55bedroom bedroom allthebrick 5 bedroom all residence allbrick brick all brick residence residence w/residence Huntw/ w/Country, Hunt Hunt Hunt Hunt Country, 12 Country, Country, miles 12 miles west 12 12miles miles west miles of Charlottesville. ofwest west Charlottesville. westofof ofCharlottesville. Charlottesville. Charlottesville. The Maridor is one of Southwest Virginia’s most beautiful properties and mostc.soughtcopper guttering copper copperguttering guttering &copper slateguttering & roof, &slate slate features &roof, slate roof,roof, afeatures features stunfeaturesaaStately astunstunstun- 5,600+ Stately Stately Stately Stately5,600+ finished 5,600+ 5,600+ finished sq.ft. finished finished finished sq.ft. Colonial-style Colonial-style sq.ft. sq.ft. sq.ft.Colonial-style Colonial-style Colonial-style after event venues. It is located in the City of Roanoke only a few blocks from historic Gran-copper gourmet ning ning ninggourmet gourmet gourmet kitchen, ning kitchen, gourmet gorgeous kitchen, kitchen, gorgeous gorgeous oakgorgeous paneled oak oakoakpaneled paneled paneled brick paneledresidence, brick brick brick brick residence, residence, residence, 4 BR,45.5 BR,44BA, 5.5 BR, BR, BR, BA, 45.5 5.5 FP, 5.5 4 FP, BA, BA, excellent BA, excellent 444FP, FP, FP,excellent excellent excellent din Village. The 10,093± sq. ft. home situated on a 0.73± ac. manicured corner lotning was built in 1916, is in excellent condition and has been meticulously restored. The retirement of thelibrary. library. Pool, library. library. 3-car Pool, Pool, library. garage. 3-car 3-car Pool,garage. Price garage. 3-car garage. & Price brochure Price Price & && brochure brochure brochure brochure details and details details details details superior andand and superior craftsmanship superior superior craftsmanship craftsmanship craftsmanship craftsmanship throughout. throughout. throughout. throughout. throughout. owner provides the opportunity to buy this desirable real estate for personal use or to con-available available available upon available request. upon upon available request. request. upon request. $2,595,000 $2,595,000 $2,595,000 $2,595,000 $2,595,000 tinue the well-established and profitable business or another business. Antiques, kitchen equipment and other furnishings will be included with the real estate.

The home has 8 bedrooms, 7 full baths and 3 half baths, including those in the carriage house that has been renovated to serve as an innkeeper’s residence or guest house. The home has living rooms, a ballroom, study, kitchen, dining room, porches and storage areas. Assessed Value of Real Estate: $743,100. Address: 1857 Grandin Rd., Roanoke, VA 24015.

Visit for detailed information Contact Jonna McGraw (VA #2434)

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503 Faulconer 503 503Faulconer Faulconer Drive, 503 Faulconer Ste. Drive, Drive, 5Drive, ~ Ste. Charlottesville, Ste. Ste. Ste.55 ~~~ Charlottesville, Charlottesville, Charlottesville, Charlottesville, VA 22903 VA 22903 VA VA22903 22903 22903

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8/23/13 9:45 AM


VC U The Doha, Qatar, branch campus of VCUarts may be half a world away, but kindred spirits bridge cultural divides in this desert city.

By Erin Parkhurst virginia living

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In November 1997, Richard Toscan, then dean of VCU School of the Arts in Richmond, stood in the desert of Qatar, a small peninsula reaching northward into the Arabian Gulf from Saudi Arabia. There, in the vast monochromatic landscape of shifting sand, located about 30 minutes outside of the country’s capital city of Doha, he saw a modest building, and, a half-mile off in the all-but-empty distance, another equally unremarkable structure. But he saw something else—opportunity. A year later, the site became home to the university’s first branch campus—VCU Qatar, which this year celebrates its 15th anniversary. VCU was the first Western university to be invited to start a program in Qatar’s Education City—today a 3,500-acre super campus enrolling more than 4,000 students from all over the world, and comprising programs from seven top universities in addition to VCU: Weill Cornell Medical College, Texas A&M University, Georgetown University School of Foreign Service, Carnegie Mellon University, Northwestern University, HEC Paris and University College London. Though VCUQ (known until 2002 as Shaqab College of Design Arts) began as an all-girls school, it went coed in 2006 and now enrolls more than 250 students (about 50 percent are Qatari nationals) representing 42 nationalities. It offers a bachelor of fine arts degree in graphic design, fashion design, interior design and painting and printmaking, as well as a new bachelor of arts degree in art history, which was established in 2012, and a master of fine arts degree in design studies. But why Qatar? How did the far-flung oil and natural gas-rich Middle Eastern monarchy, half a world away, find its way to Richmond? And, just as curious, why did VCU say yes? “In August 1997, I received a call” from a pair of representatives of Sheikha Mozah bint Nasser Al Thani—one of the three wives of the Emir of Qatar at the time, Sheikh Hamad bin Khalifa Al Thani—who was then developing a new private university in Qatar, says Toscan. Charged with identifying the world’s top schools for art and design and making a short list of candidates to be at the vanguard of the Sheikha’s education

Left: The modern skyline of Doha, Qatar. Above: Richard Toscan with VCU Qatar employee, Mohamed Ali, and Toscan's wife, Sharon Walker. Opposite page: interior of Saphron Hall, part of a 2010 addition to VCUQ's facility.

initiative, the pair looked at U.S. News & World Report’s list of schools for the top 25 in art and design (VCUarts was ranked 19th at the time) and made contact with those they thought would be culturally compatible: “It was very Japaneselike at the time in Doha,” says Toscan referring to the Qataris’ emphasis on restraint, hospitality and public decorum. The pair quickly eliminated schools in the Northeast and the West, and focused on those in the mid-Atlantic. The Sheikha’s representatives looked at other leading art and design schools around the world, but Toscan and his team from VCUarts were the only team that Sheikha Mozah wanted to meet. The cohort traveled to Qatar that November: “We were waiting in her palace, and in walks this stunning woman dressed in Western garb. ... She stuck out her hand—I was surprised because we’d been told never to shake hands with an Arab woman—and asked why I was interested.” Toscan answered that he had for some time been “intrigued” with the notion of single sex education for women and thought that Qatar’s culture seemed to be one where single-sex education made sense. “She asked if I was a feminist,” laughs Toscan. “I said, well, I’m married to one.” The Sheikha laughed, too, and in less than a year, VCUQ moved into a brand new 40,000-squarefoot building and enrolled its first 33 students. “Gene Trani was president of the university then and was a great risk-taker, so we decided to take the leap to see if it could work,” recalls Toscan. He says the prospect of starting a curriculum from scratch was exciting, but “what caught my attention was, first, that Qatar would pay the whole freight of this thing, including a building.” And, he adds, “We were going to get a very nice, hefty fee we could use to invest in the school.” The Qatar Foundation, a state-run organization established in 1995 and headed by Sheikha Mozah that funds a broad spectrum of education, science, research and community development projects in the country, offered to pay 100 percent of the school’s operating expenses in addition to constructing the building. The fee—Toscan won’t disclose the figure, honoring his original confidentiality agreement with QF—gave VCUarts O cto b e r 2 0 1 3

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the resources it needed to pursue Toscan’s goal to become one of the nation’s top five art schools. “I wanted to increase our national reputation,” he explains. “When people saw VCUarts’ name on a resume, I wanted them to say, ‘I need to pay attention.’” By 2003, U.S. News & World Report ranked VCUarts the #1 public university arts program in the country (Toscan retired in 2010). Today VCUarts retains that position (fourth overall), and holds the top slot for best sculpture program in the country as well. VCU recently signed a new 10-year contract with the Qatar Foundation to continue its mission. That empty sea of scrub and sand that Toscan saw in 1997 is now filled with sparkling new buildings (the other universities each have their own buildings and similar financial agreements with QF), including dormitories, faculty housing and even a stable. Three years ago, QF funded a renovation of VCUQ’s building, doubling its size. Expanded spaces include a media lab, digital fabrication lab, printmaking studios, photography studio, an expanded library and the first materials library in the region. VCUQ and the other universities and research organizations in Education City comprise the Hamad Bin Khalifa University community—named for the former Emir, 61-year-old Sheikh Hamad, founder of the Qatar Foundation who took control of the country in 1995 after deposing his father in a bloodless coup. (He ceded power to his second son, 33-year-old Sheikh Tamim bin Hamad Al Thani last June, when he stepped down and named the heir apparent the new Emir of Qatar.) The community shares a 108,000-square-foot student center that houses indoor waterfalls, a cinema, a bowling alley, an arcade and a dramatic sculpture garden in addition to the more quotidian coffee shop and bookstore. It has been estimated that as much as $40 billion has been spent on education projects in recent years in Qatar. And oil and gas power it all: Since the discovery of the world’s largest natural gas reserve there in the 1970s, the country has transformed from one of the poorest to one of the richest: Qatar’s annual GDP per capita is more than $100,000, according to the CIA World

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Factbook, and double that of the U.S. It is the largesse of Qatar’s ruling family that has funded QF’s education initiatives: Sheikh Hamad launched Al Jazeera, the Pan-Arab satellite television network, not long after taking power and, during his 18-year reign, amassed international holdings that include London’s iconic department store, Harrod’s, and Italian luxury label, Valentino. The motivation for the big spend on education? “The blessing of the oil and gas won’t last forever,” Sheikh Abdulla bin Ali Al Thani, Ph.D., a member of the ruling family and president of Hamad Bin Khalifa University, told BBC News in 2012, “so focusing on something more sustainable is more important.”


“I think about all the schools that are over there,” says current Dean of VCUarts Joe Seipel. “They looked around and cherry-picked the best operations. We’re really proud to be there.” Seipel travels to Qatar regularly. His most recent visit was in March for the eighth international art and design conference, Tasmeem. Organized by and held at VCUQ every other year, the conference brings together students and faculty from the Richmond and Qatar campuses with artists and students from around the world for a week-long series of exhibitions, charettes, tours, presentations by international artists, designers and architects, and collaborative workshops and labs. The 2013 conference involved 160 students from 74 countries, including 38 students and faculty from Richmond, and was designed around the

in the world right now. It just put it in perspective that you don’t need to go to New York to be an artist. There are so many different types of art in the world.” (In 2012, The Economist reported that the Al Thanis are estimated to have spent over $1 billion on Western art alone in the last decade, including the record $250 million purchase of Paul Cézanne’s The Card Players in 2011.) VCUarts sculpture and extended media department assistant professor, Corin Hewitt, led one of the week’s workshops: the building of a masonry wall in the exhibition space of the Arab Museum of Modern Art. “I was interested in the rapid shift in identity in the country and how this generation of Qataris have been afforded a less direct experience with the materiality of the city that surrounds them,” explains Hewitt of the thinking behind his project. Doha is a city under construction 24/7. Its futuristic skyline comprises gleaming modern buildings designed by leading international architects—including I.M. Pei who created the imposing Museum of Islamic Art—that rise up, mirage-like, out of Doha’s harbor. Everywhere is the detritus of this constant Joseph Seipel, dean of construction—piles of concrete block, VCU School of the Arts. stucco, mortar powder. The students “are surrounded by buildings of concrete and steel, but many in this generation probably never mixed cement,” says Hewitt. (Most of the students at VCUQ are the children of well-to-do Qataris and expats who regard manual labor as the exclusive work of the lower castes.) Asma Hosna, a 20-year-old VCUQ junior majoring in interior design was one of the students working on Hewitt’s

theme, “Hybrid Making,” exploring the role of art and design in the transformation of Doha from a small pearl-fishing village to a growing center of international influence. Architect Rem Koolhaas, whose projects include the new headquarters of China Central Television in Beijing and the Qatar National Library, delivered the conference’s keynote speech. “The kinds of activities that went on were amazing,” says Seipel. “They brought in professional artists from around the world who worked with these student teams to make these wonderful, wild, crazy things, like solar-powered bicycles connected to things like big inflatables, and people taking tents, taking them apart and making different things with them, then making them back into tents again.” “It was really great to kind of be removed, out of the situation I’ve been comfortable in,” says VCUarts senior Alex Curley, 21, a double major in art education and sculpture, who participated in the conference for the first time this year. “Qatar is one of the biggest buyers of contemporary art

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photos courtesy of vcuarts. photo of dean seipel by ash daniel

Clockwise from top left: VCUQ's building in Education City; Arwa Safri working on a Tasmeem project; Arabic letters spelling 'Desert Rose' on Corin Hewitt's masonry wall at Tasmeem were written backward to be read via a mirror hanging on the wall behind; Mariam Al Sarraj and Abdulla Al Kuwari with Assistant Professor of Graphic Design Michael Hersrud.

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photo courtesy of afp/getty images

Clockwise from far left: Asma Hosna mixes cement during the Tasmeem 2013 design conference; VCUQ students set up a mobile printmaking studio for the conference; head of the Qatar Foundation, Sheikha Mozah bint Nasser Al Thani; VCUarts faculty Elissa Armstrong and Bob Paris ride camels during a visit to VCUQ.

team. Born in Bangladesh, but a resident of Qatar since she was three years old, Hosna says her biggest challenge on the project was wearing her abaya; she layered a work jumpsuit over her traditional floor-length black robe and shayla (head scarf), to help haul cement and bricks to construct the wall. “This was an art-making conference, getting filthy, making projects,” says Elizabeth King, professor in VCUarts’ sculpture and extended media department who participated in the conference. “A lot of the women [in Qatar] wear the full abaya, and they had to roll their sleeves up. In a way this surprised everyone—seeing the way these women effortlessly navigated the divide between the messiness of the work and the decorum and tradition of the abaya.” “Many might take abaya as a challenge, and the solution to it might be to dress in something else,” says Hosna. “But for me, I feel I carry my dignity in my abaya, and changing to a different dressing isn’t my option. So I carried on with it, and it wasn’t impossible. Dressing won’t really matter if you have the will and determination to do it.” “We think of the abaya as being some kind of cloak of oppression, but women have turned it into a beautiful, fashionable piece of apparel,” says Sandra Wilkins, a VCU faculty member since 1977 who has headed the fashion department at VCUQ and lived in Qatar since the beginning. (Western women are not required to cover in Qatar but are advised to dress modestly.) Wilkins, who had never been to the Middle East before she agreed to teach in Qatar, says, “I was told it was dangerous and that they didn’t care for Americans or Westerners, but all of the things I had heard about were not true.” Wilkins

says when she first went to Qatar, people asked if she was afraid. Her answer? An emphatic no. (She confesses to but one fear—the drivers in Doha’s traffic-congested city of nearly two million.) What about 9/11? “It was a huge earthquake for us,” says Toscan, “because we didn’t know what would happen in Qatar, what their attitudes would be.” He describes an outpouring of sympathy following the attacks: “Our colleagues and parents and students urged us to stay in the country. ” He says they wanted “us not to feel like they shared anything in common with bin Laden.” Though faculty had the opportunity to leave the country, Toscan says not one of them did. VCUarts and VCUQ students who have had experience on each other’s campuses will say that they have found they have more in common than they expected. Hisham Dawoud, 21, a VCUQ senior majoring in fashion design, spent a semester studying in Richmond in 2012 (QF funds 3 exchange students from each campus each semester), and says that once, while pulling an all-nighter, he “came across a student who was riding a gyro car [a child’s toy]. I literally jumped at the sight of it, because we had one the exact same color back home in our department 7,000 miles away. I realized we really are more alike than I had imagined .… I blended right in.” But as alike as the world’s 18- to 22-year-olds may be, there are significant cultural differences between east and west, even in a country as friendly to the west as Qatar—home to the largest U.S. air base in the region, and host in 2022 of the FIFA World Cup. It begs the question: How does an art and design school firmly based in the traditions of Western art translate in a Muslim country? O cto b e r 2 0 1 3

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“We have some modifications that are both cultural and context specific,” explains Allyson Vanstone, dean since 2007 of VCUQ. “It is culturally inappropriate to have nude model drawing,” so drawing in Qatar is instead taught using objects that have amorphic shapes. The human figure is embedded in the Western tradition of art, but the tradition of Islamic art, with its wide use of calligraphy, is very different, at least in the areas of religious art and architecture. The Islamic resistance to figural representation stems from a belief that only God creates living forms. Vanstone says they also include bilingual typography in the graphic design program to incorporate Arabic text and fonts. “The one thing we really do not want to do, is we do not want our students to lose their identity—who they are at the core, and their culture at the core. It’s not for us to do that,” says Seipel. “We’re there to help them express themselves as who they are. What sense would it make for us to try to make a Chicago artist out of them?” Seipel says he is eager to avoid clichés “because it is so easy to fall into that.” But, he adds, “When you meet at a person to person level, there is one thing about art and design, it bypasses other barriers. “Once these students are focused in their creative fields this creative energy just pops between the two of them, and there’s something marvelous about it because, in the mix of their conversations, in the mix of their developing a project, there’s always a looking back and forth at each other and saying well, what happens from your point of view, and how do we work this out? Well, that’s what education is about. It’s pretty interesting.”, ❉

virginia living

8/23/13 2:00 PM

Promised land Is it possible to make a world-class wine in Virginia? rutger de Vink, of RdV Vineyards in Delaplane, says yes. Now he has to sell it. By Caroline Kettlewell

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photography by Mark Edward Atkinson

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Previous page: The vineyard's 30,000 vines cover 16 acres in Fauquier County. Above: Gabriel Flores, Oscar Vargas, Ezequiel Cortez and Raul Herrera tending to the vines at RdV Vineyards.

enter RdV vineyards, in delaplane,

of a rainy day. But, thwarted by the weather, they give themselves over instead to a wide-ranging, hours-long conversation in RdV’s private tasting salon, where their passion reveals itself through a steady procession of bottles— uncorked, breathed, swirled, sampled, discussed, analyzed. “A great wine,” explains de Vink, swirling the glass in his hand—a compulsive habit, he admits—“has to speak of a place. It can’t be replicated anywhere else. This wine comes from this vineyard. “And it has to deliver complexity in the glass, so that when you taste the wine, you taste many layers of nuances, and you have to go back to the glass, because the complexity keeps on growing.” What, really, does any of that mean? This isn’t the language of the something-red-with-dinner drinkers, the cocktail-party Chardonnay consumers that most of us, the majority of the wine-drinking public, are. To understand the story a good wine tells requires years of educating a palate, of days just like this one, tasting and tasting and discussing and appraising and comparing and questioning. “It’s all very complicated to understand,” says de Vink, “until you put the wine in your mouth.”

and you’ll travel a long gravel driveway, a barely marked turn off a narrow, winding side road. On this early June morning, it’s so quiet that all you can hear is the twitter of birds and, faintly drifting down from the hillside above where RdV’s permanent team of four vineyard workers is tending to the vines, a tinny chorus of norteño music from a pickup-truck radio. Low-hanging clouds threaten a rain that soon arrives, the latest dousing from a cool, wet summer, and the Blue Ridge foothills roll away, lush and green. You are here to meet Rutger de Vink, about whom you know only this: Dutch family, international roots, former Marine officer, business-school graduate, refugee from the 9-to-5 grind with private resources backing a young vineyard that, in its first few vintages, has produced some extraordinarily good wines, wines that can hold their own, so you have read, in comparison to some of the best of Napa and Bordeaux. The 43-year-old de Vink strides in to the vineyard’s cool, airy winery, sunruddied and disheveled, in heavy boots and grimy work shirt, his greeting friendly and unassuming. No lord of the manor, de Vink lives nominally in an Airstream on the property but, primarily, it becomes apparent, outdoors in the vineyard itself. He is followed closely by 32-year-old Josh Grainer, a Virginian from New Kent and RdV’s “technical director.” (You’d call him the winemaker, except, says Grainer, “We don’t use the term winemaker here—the wine will make itself. We just have to guide it.”) Almost immediately they begin talking about the wine, the vines, the weather forecast, the work to be done. And it takes perhaps two minute of listening to realize that you are in the company of people for whom wine is a lifeconsuming passion, a lived-and-breathed raison d’être .… a devotion. On RdV’s 16 planted acres are 30,000 vines, a mix of Bordeaux-style grapes, Merlot and Cabernet Sauvignon and Cabernet Franc and Petit Verdot. And every one of those 30,000 plants receives, says de Vink, its own individual care. “We know the perfect profile of a plant—the way a perfect plant should look—and we try to replicate it for 30,000 plants,” he says. “The canopy has to be positioned to be a perfect solar panel to capture the sunlight.” They speak of this process, this extraordinary care, not with weariness but with a reverence, and you sense in neither of them any gratitude for the respite virginia living

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The story of RdV

has been chronicled (“Rock Star,” “Gutsy Gambit,” “Virginia’s Rogue Winemaker”) across multiple publications in the scant twoand-a-half years since the winery’s first vintage was released: former Marine officer, making a success of himself in the boom-boom world of telecom venture capital, wearied of suits and ties and soulless suburbia and living for the weekend. He longed to be outdoors. He longed for work that, like the Marines, wasn’t a job, but a way of life. Drinking Champagne at a New Year’s Eve party, he had an epiphany—“I’ve got to change my life.” Intrigued by the wine business, he read a lot of books on the subject, called up a Virginia-based expert viticulturist, Lucie Morton, and asked, “Hey, can you make a world-class wine in Virginia?” Because de Vink likes a challenge, and he doesn’t do things by half measures, he would set himself the ambition of making not just a good wine, not a great Virginia wine, but a world-class wine; a wine that could be, as they say in the business “in the game,” that could earn its place at the table with the best of Bordeaux and Napa. But Morton’s answer to his question was this: Before you go into the business, you must understand wine. And she sent him to Jim Law. Who sent him away, and sent him away, until finally de Vink managed to beg himself


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Clockwise from above left: The vines at RdV Vineyards; Vineyard Manager Gabriel Flores with de Vink; the winery at night; adding new fruiting varieties to a vine through grafting. Below: De Vink in his Airstream on the vineyard.

an apprenticeship at Law’s Linden Vineyards in Fauquier County, where Law promptly set the former-Marine and M.B.A. to doing grunt work—cutting the tops off the shoots to control the vigor of the plant. And de Vink loved it. During his time at Linden, de Vink joined Law and a group of winemakers on a trip to France, and at Cheval Blanc, where the wine demands more than $1,000 per bottle, he met the vineyard’s consultant, Kees van Leeuwen, and a fast friendship was born. If a great wine is made not by the winemaker but by the land, then what de Vink learned from van Leeuwen is that the best land for wine should be lousy for growing much else. Put simply, the fundamental starting point of making wine is that if you stress a vine by restricting its water, it will focus its energies on the biological imperative to reproduce; it will pour its soul into its fruit, its seed, the grape. To grow a great wine then, particularly in lush, verdant Virginia, you would begin with low-water-holding capacity soil and a steep hillside, where the rain just runs away. You would begin with land like de Vink eventually found in Delaplane after years of searching, not just in Virginia but also in Sonoma, and Central California, and the Sierra Nevadas: pretty much nothing but a pile of rocks, 18 inches of stony topsoil sitting on a solid wall of granite, where the former owner’s Angus cattle had roamed and the county soil map indicated “not suitable for agriculture.” With private backing, including from family, he set out to see if he could answer the question he’d posed to Morton. In 2004, he cleared the land. He consulted with experts to lay out the vineyard, to understand its soil composition and microclimates, to prepare its trellising. He planted his grapes. He tended his vines. He waited. In the fall of 2008, he brought in his first harvest. In November came the first opportunity to taste the wine. De Vink’s technical consultant, JeanPhilippe Roby—a French viticulturist to whom Cheval Blanc’s van Leeuwen had referred de Vink—offered to deliver a sample of that wine into the hands of a fellow Frenchman named Eric Boissenot: one of the most important figures in French wine-making, a

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quiet unassuming “consultant winemaker” in Bordeaux who supervises the “assemblage,” or blending, that creates some of that region’s most famed wines. (An expertly orchestrated assemblage of a vineyard’s different grape varieties produces a wine of the greatest depth and complexity.) “C’est un vin du terroir,” came the email from Boissenot. “I do your blend.” Terroir. A French word with no exact English translation, it carries, in the world of wine, an almost mystically nuanced complexity of meaning. It is terroir that creates a great wine, and, in turn, a great wine expresses its terroir— that sense of place, as de Vink describes it, of that very particular land and the soil in which the grapes grew, but also of the sun and the rain and the microclimate and the infinite variations of a particular growing season. When you taste a wine that fully expresses its terroir, it should say all these things. That Boissenot had bestowed the distinction of “terroir” upon the first vintage of a new Virginia winery was extraordinary; that he had offered to supervise RdV’s blends was rather like Francis Ford Coppola reading your first

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Above: De Vink in “The Cave.” Below: RdV's two blends, Lost Mountain and Rendezvous.

thought by having a non-biased group of people taste it and recognize its quality, we thought it would be automatically accepted in the industry. We didn’t realize how it wasn’t going to be that way. We weren’t anticipating,” says this M.B.A., “that we would have to go out and sell our wine.” It wasn’t until 2011, three years after RdV’s first harvest, that de Vink finally added a marketing specialist to his staff. Should he have been less surprised? Although it is producing ever better wines in general and some very good wines in particular, Virginia is still a long way from being a byword in the industry for vins du terroir; Molly Choi, executive vice president at Cape Classics, a wine importer in Manhattan, diplomatically speaks of the state as an “up-and-coming” region that “may not yet have gotten that national acceptance.” De Vink, with the wisdom now won of some painful experience, puts it more candidly. “In Virginia, you’ll hear, ‘Oh yeah, Virginia wines are great, we are up-and-coming,’ but we are drinking our own Kool-Aid. You go out in the real world and you hear ‘Not bad, for a Virginia wine,’ or even, ‘Oh, I didn’t know Virginia made wine.’” Even de Vink, confident as he was in his wines, tacitly acknowledged that obstacle when he first released them. He initially priced his two wines, Lost Mountain (“dense black fruit notes and subtle oak”) and Rendezvous (“finishes with an energized backbone that sings of minerality”) at $88 and $55. The business of wine, as business, is not for the faint of heart nor the shallow of pocketbook. The startup cost for a fully operational winery, is something upwards of $50,000 per acre just for the land and the vines, then add staff, and the equipment and facilities to ferment, age, and bottle the wine. Not to mention the three-year wait before you can harvest your first grape, and the vagaries—particularly in Virginia—of weather and threats of disease and pests. And then there’s selling your wine, a process so mired in a nearly Kafkaesque tangle of regulations, with every state setting its own laws and licensing requirements, that it’s no wonder that, of the more than 200 wineries in Virginia, nearly all are happy to succeed on a mix of wine tourism—hosting weddings and bluegrass weekends—and selling their wine directly to purchasers. De Vink understands that to start from scratch today, to build a world-class vineyard from the ground up, demands a relentless, uncompromising passion, patience and persistence that few can muster and almost nobody can afford. On another afternoon, around another table, at another vineyard—Virginia’s long-established Barboursville—the wine flows again as de Vink joins in conversation with two of that small fraternity, winemakers he considers his closest mentors and colleagues: Jim Law, under whom he apprenticed, and Barboursville’s Italian-born Luca Paschina. Both have critically acclaimed wines of

script and signing on as director. Even de Vink was taken aback. Boissenot says, “When I tasted the vintage of 2008, I told myself that there was something interesting here, and I did not hesitate.” The well-known British wine critic Jancis Robinson called RdV “Virginia’s new star” and wrote of de Vink in The Financial Times, “I sincerely believe his considerable efforts stand a good chance of putting the state on the world wine map.” The then-winemaker at California’s famed Screaming Eagle Winery & Vineyards advised RdV to set the price at more than $100 dollars a bottle. These were people who owed de Vink no favors. “They wouldn’t stake their reputations on our wines if they didn’t believe they were good,” he says. Vindicated for his faith in terroir and passionate attention to detail, RdV was in the game. And then, with the work of years come to its first and rewarding fruition, de Vink was brought up hard by the cold realities of the marketplace. “The world,” he discovered, “has plenty of wine at the high end. It doesn’t need any more.” And it didn’t need, therefore, to sit up and take notice of a newcomer wine, however good, from a state without a solidly established international reputation for exceptional wines. While his 2008 and 2009 vintages sold out (a combined 1,500 cases), with a strong showing from regional customers in particular, de Vink wants to see his wine championed by a San Francisco sommelier, by a New York restaurateur, by a discerning collector who will offer it to friends saying, “Look at what I’ve discovered.” And that’s proving a tougher sell from the foothills of the Blue Ridge. “I never focused at all on wine marketing,” admits de Vink. “My focus,” he says, in something of an understatement, “was to make a great wine. And I virginia living

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Above, left to right: Stairs in the silo lead down to the fermentation room; inside the fermentation room; a freshly poured glass of RdV Lost Mountain. Below: Jim Law, de Vink and Luca Paschina share a bottle at Barboursville Vineyards.

their own—in particular Barboursville’s Octagon and Law’s Hardscrabble—and de Vink credits the two with generously sharing years of hard-won knowledge and experience that he has been able to build upon in his own vineyard. “It’s thanks to these two guys I’m here,” says de Vink. “They’re the pioneers in Virginia who made it possible for people like myself to come into the industry.” Barboursville is by far the largest of the three vineyards, owned by a successful Italian winemaking family of many generations’ standing that for more than 20 years has entrusted Paschina, a third-generation winemaker, with the work of developing Barboursville’s wine and building its reputation. Law has patiently nurtured his Linden over 30 years, acre by acre, harvest by harvest. The moment de Vink, Law and Paschina greet each other, it’s obvious that they are cut of the same cloth. The wine talk tumbles forth, taking in a dizzying array of topics, from Paschina’s bottle-supplier to the (still rainy) weather to the seductive call of the vineyard in any season. “You get out there, and you are looking at a vine,” Law, 58, muses, “and the next thing you know, two hours have passed.” “One thing just leads to another,” de Vink agrees. As the corks are pulled, Paschina produces plates of freshly made gnocchi, spinach and cucumbers harvested from his garden and venison he hunted and prepared himself. “This is the meaning of life,” says de Vink. “To drink wine and take time and sit around a table. You give the bottle the time it deserves. You respect the wine.” Alas, that’s not how everyone drinks wine. And it’s not always, the three recognize, how their customers drink it either, a fact which almost visibly pains them to note. Art demands an audience, but an artist yearns for the audience the art deserves. These three want you not simply to drink good wine, but to experience it: to be in the moment with the language of the land. And so, with frequent digressions on the subject of the wine (“it’s still fairly plummy in the back”), the food (“I soak the cucumbers in rice wine and rice vinegar and some lemon juice”) and viticulture (“wine is about soil”), they consider the challenges of making a Virginia wine that the world—and most particularly those fellow disciples of the vine, the sommeliers, the winemakers, the discerning connoisseurs—will take notice of. “It is great how we can sell wine here in Virginia, but at the end of the day, we have an ambitious goal to be a great American wine,” says de Vink. “And in order to do that you can’t sell your wine just in Virginia.” “It is important to me to be in a few good places,” agrees Paschina, who was recently profiled in The New York Times for his efforts to bring wider recognition to Barboursville and to Virginia’s terroir. But to accomplish that, admits de Vink, “I spend an inordinate amount of

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time going places, schlepping my wine, saying, ‘Try this.’” He eschews wine competitions but enthusiastically promotes “brown bag” or blind tastings of his wines in matchups with top Bordeaux and California vintages. RdV has begun opening its doors to its patrons, what the winery is calling its “ambassadors,” hosting small, private tastings and carefully planned events. De Vink would rather, he admits, be by himself, in his vineyard, his home. “I’m not Mr. Social,” he says. “But there is so much wine in the world today that you have to build relationships.” “It is a tremendous amount of work,” demurs Law, “and that is why I shy away from it.” With the satisfaction of knowing he can sell out his annual production within the borders of Virginia, Law chooses the pleasure of staying at home among his vines over the promise of earning his wines a broader audience. “But my thing is,” says de Vink, “I want to be in Jean-Georges. I want the top sommeliers to be like, ‘I have these great wines from California, but I have this East Coast wine, too; try this, this is RdV.’ And I have a better chance if I bring your wine and …. ” “You are not alone,” nods Paschina, completing the thought. Says de Vink, “When people drink a $100 bottle of wine, it is for a celebration, for a special event, and Virginia doesn’t connote that today. But if we keep at it, hopefully we will get to that point where I give you a bottle of RdV, and you say ‘OK, this is special, thank you.’” It’s not, he says, about trying to prove that RdV’s wines are better than those other, more established wines of Napa and Bordeaux “The idea,” he says, “is that we are in the game.” ❉

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TIME TO HIT THE BOOKS! ay! d o t e ib r c s b Su

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State of Education

Celebrating excellence and innovation in Virginia’s public and private high schools and four-year colleges, featuring Top High Schools & Colleges 2013!

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We’re Ready!

Center for Civic & Global Leadership

Newport News Public Schools is preparing students to be Students have access to 50 Advanced Placement and college credit courses. Through hands-on learning, clubs, internships and job-shadowing, students are jump-starting their careers. Through youth development and service learning programs, students are volunteering to improve our community.

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top high schools & colleges 2013 A list of nearly 150 of the most innovative programs in the Commonwealth.

101 | science , math & technolo gy 105 | arts & h umanities 111 | co - ops & partnerships 117 | capital improvements 123 | athle tics

feature stories


101 | N o rfo lk C o lleg iat e' s To p Sa i lo rs

103 | h a m p to n u ' s h a rv e y n a m ed a ll - ti m e g re at

105 | G re at er Ri c h m o n d L au n c h pa d fo r A r t s

109 | a r t o n m a n y le v el s at wo o d b erry fo re s t

107 | FFL a n n e H o lto n Fos t ers E xpec tati o ns

115 | m a rc h i n g to t h e rose bow l f ro m c h a nti lly

111 | UVA' s s ta r as t ro n o m er sh i n e s

121 | b ri d g e wat er ' s recyc lem a n iac s

113 | h i g h a r t at v i rg i n ia t ec h

126 | u va' s p o lo p ow erh o use P INIA’S TO





125 | a ppa l ac h ia n h i g h at em o ry & h en ry


119 | fo llowi n g d re a ms at foxc ro f t s c h o o l 123 | u r ' s ay ers: f ro m o n e pre si d ent to a n ot h er



117 | rita b ish o p: s ta r cit y ' s b e ac o n


Cover photo courtesy of Miller School of Albemarle. Photo of Westfield High School marching band this page by Jim Carpenter.





Ch oic e

s’ id tor 2 0 1 3

A Note from the Editors: Virginia Living’s Top High Schools & Colleges 2013 recognizes schools for their excellence and innovation in five categories: Arts & Humanities, Science, Math & Technology, Co-Ops & Partnerships, Athletics and Capital Improvements. After careful and thorough review of each school’s programs and accomplishments, Virginia Living’s editors selected schools that have instituted academic programs, excelled in athletics, or recently begun capital improvements, any or all of which are aimed at strengthening students’ experiences in the classroom, on the field and in their communities. From large public research universities to small private liberal arts colleges, and from public schools systems to private boarding schools, Virginia Living’s Top High Schools & Colleges 2013 is the resource for anyone interested why Virginia’s o cto bine rknowing 2 0 1 3 99 v i r g i n i a lschools i v i n g are consistently ranked among the country’s best.

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COVENANT SCHOOL Charlottesville’s Christian Liberal Arts & Sciences School for Pre-K – Grade 12 _____________


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top high schools & colleges 2013 Science, Math & Technology COLLEGES

Eastern Mennonite University Harrisonburg, 540-432-4000 EMU’s M.A. in biomedicine is a post-baccalaureate program designed for students from non-life sciences fields who wish to attend medical school or work in healthcare. The program can be completed as a master’s in two years or a postgraduate certificate in one. Students dissect cadavers, a practice usually reserved for medical school. Over the past decade, more than 90 percent of EMU’s biomedical students have been accepted into medical schools.

University of Richmond

University of Virginia

Richmond, 804-289-8000

Charlottesville, 434-924-0311

UR student scores on national accounting exams typically rank in the top 10 of business schools from across the nation. Organizations like PricewaterhouseCoopers, State Corporation Commission of Virginia and Accenture and graduate schools at UVA, William & Mary and NYU have recruited recent grads. Bloomberg Businessweek ranks UR’s accounting program one of the top in the U.S.

The new Contemplative Sciences Center explores the healing effects of yoga, meditation and mindfulness across multiple disciplines. The center’s first event, held in April 2012, was a symposium on Tibetan medicine and meditation, representing the sort of interdisciplinary work the Center hopes to accomplish. Researchers are exploring topics such as the effects of contemplative practices on epilepsy and depression.

George Mason University Fairfax, 703-993-1000 GMU established the nation’s first biodefense graduate program in 2003 through its National Center for Biodefense and Infectious Diseases and remains the only university in the country to offer a Ph.D. in the field. The doctorate prepares students for work in preventing biological terrorism attacks. NCBID researches biological threats, aerobiology techniques, pathogenic mechanisms and more.

Hampton University Hampton, 757-727-5000 In 2009, HU opened the Hampton University Skin of Color Research Institute to advance the research and treatment of skin diseases that primarily affect people of color. The HUSCRI is the first research center of its kind in Virginia. Housed in the HU Biomedical Research Center, the HUSCRI partners with Eastern Virginia Medical School, the Thomas Jefferson National Accelerator Facility and L’Oreal.

Center of Effort

Old Dominion University Norfolk, 757-683-3000

Norfolk Collegiate School’s sailing team leaves others in its wake.

Having just graduated its first class of four in May, ODU’s undergraduate program in modeling, simulation and visual engineering is the first of its kind in the U.S. The curriculum focuses on computer visualization, simulation software design and statistical analysis. With 1,500 unfilled modeling and simulation jobs in Virginia, the program and its Ph.D. counterpart, founded in 2000, attempt to fill a gap in the technology workforce.

by bland crowder

Shenandoah University Winchester, 540-665-4500

University of Mary Washington Fredericksburg, 540-654-1000 During the 2012-2013 school year, UMW began the pilot project, “A Domain of One’s Own,” in which 400 students and faculty were given their own website. Starting in the fall of 2013, every incoming freshman will have the same opportunity to create everything from an academic portfolio to a blog, and will get to keep the domain after they graduate.

photo courtesy of norfolk collegiate

Shenandoah’s pharmacogenomics program and its music production and recording technology program have been named Apple Distinguished Programs two years in a row, making SU the state’s only university to receive this honor for its use of Apple products in the classroom. Associate Professor of Pharmacogenomics Jim Green says, “The program’s graduates are sought out by potential employers because of their ability to effectively utilize technology-based information.”

Norfolk Collegiate School has one whale of a sailing team. Since forming in 1998, the team has captured 10 Virginia and 10 mid-Atlantic titles and three times has placed in the top 10 nationally. Its secret? “Top-flight sailors,” says Coach Randy Stokes, a 55-year-old Norfolk attorney who organized the team. “We have benefited by having dedicated sailors, working them hard and allowing them to develop in their own way. They have pushed and pulled each other.” Indeed they have. “Our sailors can join early and have the opportunity to learn, and master, the necessary skills to compete even at the national level,” says Headmaster Scott Kennedy. As many as 25 sixth- through 12th-graders sail on coed JV and varsity teams, with top younger sailors sometimes sailing varsity. It’s a fall school sport, but members sail in the spring, too, as a club. NCS sails on the Lafayette River, out of Norfolk Yacht and Country Club. In addition to a shining team, Stokes’ sailors excel individually, before and after graduation. Last year, ninth-grade skippers Darden Purrington and Victor Layne were named to the All-Tidewater Conference of Independent Schools, and this summer Purrington was invited to race in a women-only event at Harvard University. “Four of our sailors have received All-American honors in college,” Stokes says, “five have become captains, and seven have qualified for nationals.” The All-Americans include Stokes’ sons Sam, who sailed at the College of Charleston, and John, who sailed at Harvard, as well as Chris Clevin, who sailed at Hobart. Norfolk Collegiate’s state “league” is VISA, the Virginia Interscholastic Sailing Association, with 20 member high schools, public and private, from Richmond, Hampton Roads, the peninsulas and the Northern Neck. Stokes heads VISA and was instrumental in organizing it as he was building the NCS team. With so many schools on the water in Virginia, there are many events to see, but don't miss Oct. 23 when the VISA Championship will be held at Norfolk Yacht and Country Club, and all the member teams will compete.

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virginia living

8/23/13 2:30 PM

The Governor’s School for Science and Technology provides a distinguished STEM and scientific research curriculum to the Greater Virginia Peninsula’s gifted high school students. With small class sizes and advanced-degreed faculty, the learning environment at the Governor’s School is truly unique.

Illuminating Minds… Igniting Passions… Shaping Futures... For more information, contact Vikki Wismer, Director 757.766.1100 ext. 3313 520 Butler Farm Road, Hampton, VA 23666

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top high schools & colleges 2013 Science, Math & Technology continued Virginia Commonwealth University Richmond, 804-828-0100 The da Vinci Center for Product Innovation is an interdisciplinary arts, engineering and business program that offers an undergraduate certificate and a master’s in product innovation. Students solve real-life product development issues like identifying key insights and needs, designing product packaging and developing commercialization plans for Dominion Power, Pfizer Consumer Healthcare, Dupont, Science Museum of Virginia and others. Innoblitz is da Vinci's annual eight-hour challenge for two competing student groups to tackle a product innovation issue.

Virginia Military Institute VMI’s department of physics and astronomy started offering a new nuclear energy concentration in 2011 and graduates its first class in 2015. The program targets students who want to work in the nuclear energy industry, particularly as reactor designers. The department has also launched a new B.A. in physics, allowing students to take a number of humanities and social science electives while still gaining exposure to and practice in advanced physics and mathematics.

Virginia Polytechnic Institute and State University BlacksburG, 540-231-6000 Virginia Tech is the only school in Virginia with an Institute of Food Technologists-approved program for food science and technology. VT offers the program at both undergraduate and graduate levels. The Chronicle of Higher Education ranked the department seventh in the country in 2010. The program offers three options: science, food business and food and health. Students are trained in how to make best use of food resources and minimize waste.


Albemarle County Public Schools Charlottesville, 434-296-5820 Albemarle County will open a third Science, Technology, Engineering & Math (STEM) academy in the summer of 2014 at Western Albemarle High School. The new environmental science academy will offer two tracks: one focusing on independent field research and the other on real-world environmental problems. Courses like oceanography and environmental chemistry will give students a chance to learn about natural resources, clean energy and industry trends. Albemarle High School already hosts the county’s Math, Engineering and Science Academy, while Monticello High School is home to its Health and Medical Sciences Academy.

Christ Chapel Academy Woodbridge, 703-670-3822 Offering the only secondary school cyber security track in the country, Christ Chapel’s pilot program prepares students for entry-level employment as certified ethical hackers (also known as security penetration testers). The 12-course series includes training in several programming languages, ethics and management, and meets Department of Defense hiring requirements. Students are also prepared to work as computer or network technicians, entry-level managers for information assurance policies, or programmers.

photo by keith cephus

Lexington, 540-464-7230

Hampton University President William R. Harvey this year was named one of the top five Historically Black College and University presidents of all time by HBCU Digest.

Christchurch School Christchurch, 804-758-2306 Christchurch emphasizes the importance of environmental stewardship across disciplines through integrated curricula and field experiences on the Rappahannock River. The school assigns each grade a theme and a conflict to help students understand their place as individuals in a complex global society. In 12th grade, for instance, the theme is “Rivers Flow Past Many Shores: Ourselves, Our World,” and the conflict is, “In the world today, to what extent do one’s community needs and wants outweigh another’s?”

The Collegiate School Richmond, 804-741-9700 The economic education program at Collegiate incorporates economics across the curriculum, offering microeconomics and macroeconomics courses, the Darr Davis Investment Club and the Euro Challenge. Collegiate also offers a summer workstudy program—the Cochrane Summer Economics Institute, during which students from across Metro Richmond intern with local businesses and take classes. The Virginia Council on Economic Education named Collegiate’s Rob Wedge the 2011 Economic Educator of the Year.

Fork Union Military Academy Fork Union, 434-842-3212 Instead of taking five to six classes at a time on a “block” schedule as many high schools dictate, Fork Union cadets operate on the One Subject Plan, during which a cadet takes just one class for seven weeks. Fork Union is the only school in Virginia that utilizes this system, which allows deep focus on a subject and has been in continuous use nearly 60 years.

Miller School of Albemarle Charlottesville, 434-823-4805 The Miller School offers a pre-engineering track to prepare students for engineering coursework at the college level. Students maintain an engineering portfolio, showcasing

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objects they have built—like wall clocks and boats—as well as objects they have produced using a 3D printer. Students become familiar with design software, Autodesk Inventor and woodworking, and also go on engineering-related field trips.

New Horizons Governor’s School for Science and Technology Hampton, 757-766-1100 New Horizons has implemented a mandatory Research Methodology & Ethics course as part of its advanced math and science curriculum. The course introduces students to scientific research, experimental design and statistical analysis. Students are required to perform a behavioral research project (such as one student’s notable exploration of dietary taste perception) and present it at the annual Tidewater Science Fair.

Newport News Public Schools Newport News, 757-591-4500 Denbigh High School houses the only four-year Federal Aviation Administration magnet program in the Commonwealth. Many courses take place at the Newport News-Williamsburg International Airport where students learn about aviation maintenance, management and technology. Students are required to take advanced math and science courses and may also take dual-enrollment courses and earn specialized aviation certification.

Prince William County Public Schools Manassas, 703-791-7200 Osborn Park High School’s biotechnology program prepares students for the field by integrating AP science courses with English and social studies. Students may take elective courses, including scientific illustration, and introduction to forensic science, and complete a senior independent research project. They must also perform 100 hours of service or learning hours related to science; one student even traveled to Russia through NASA Space Camp.

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Academics shape the structure of our learning community. A robust athletics program, engaging fine arts curriculum, and strong commitment to service creates well-rounded individuals. We honor tradition while nurturing an environment of innovation and creativity. Get to know St. Anne’s-Belfield School. Visit us today.

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St. Anne’s-Belfield School

GRADES PS-12, 5- AND 7-DAY BOARDING IN GRADES 9-12 2 1 3 2 I V Y R O A D ~ ( 4 3 4 ) 2 9 6 - 5 1 0 6 ~ W W W. S T A B . O R G

Shenandoah University is an Equal Opportunity Educational Institution/Employer.

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top high schools & colleges 2013 Science, Math & Technology continued

Thomas Jefferson High School for Science and Technology

Randolph-Macon Academy

Alexandria, 703-750-8300

Front Royal, 540-636-5200

All Thomas Jefferson students must complete a yearlong senior research project using one of the 13 specialized research laboratories on campus or a professional lab off campus with a mentor. Dozens of student projects have received awards and recognition from the Intel Science Talent Search and the Virginia Junior Academy of Science.

The High Flight program is a track designed for students planning to enroll in one of the U.S. service academies. Students take AP calculus as juniors, shadow mentors and train to take the Military Candidate Fitness Test. Students can also earn their solo wings through flight lessons. The program’s three graduating classes have been offered admission to military service academies and earned ROTC scholarships to colleges and universities.

Winchester Academy Winchester, 540-542-1100

Roanoke Catholic School Roanoke, 540-982-3532

Students declare a concentration in the School of Math & Science and the School of Health & Physical Education and take relevant elective classes, like robotics, forensics, anatomy and travel sports. Winchester Academy tailors the elective offerings to the particular set of students each year. Any student in the school can declare such a concentration, with no test or academic portfolio required.

The National Parks Experience science program uses one of three national parks—the Grand Canyon, Yosemite or Yellowstone—as a classroom for lessons on natural and human history. Over spring break, the class takes a one-week backpacking trip to the national park. In preparation for the trip, students camp and hike along the nearby Appalachian Trail.

Woodberry Forest School

Roanoke Valley Governor’s School for Science and Technology

Woodberry Forest, 540-672-3900

Roanoke, 540-853-2116

Woodberry freshmen take conceptual physics as part of their “physics first” science curriculum. They then take chemistry as sophomores and biology as juniors. Conceptual physics is based on problem-solving rather than higher mathematics. Teacher Greg Jacobs believes that the “holy trinity” of freshman physics allows students to learn three skills: 1) how to reason with basic equations, 2) how to interpret graphs, and 3) how to understand “what numbers really mean.”

All Roanoke Valley freshmen are required to take the fundamentals of research, a yearlong course that prepares students to design and implement research projects that meet regional science fair standards. Students learn about proper research methods and data analysis and develop public speaking skills. The fruit of their labor is a formal paper written according to Virginia Junior Academy of Sciences guidelines.

Arts & Humanities

Rockingham County Public Schools Harrisonburg, 540-564-3200 Broadway High School’s students are among the first to control the National Radio Astronomy Observatory’s robotically operated telescope in Green Bank, West Virginia, earning the astronomy department the 2013 Programs That Work award from the Virginia Mathematics & Science Coalition. The radio astronomy program allows students to explore an environment that is normally beyond reach.

George Mason University Fairfax, 703-993-1000 George Mason video game design is ranked as one of the top animation programs in the South by the website Animation Career Review. In 2012, 10 teams of students designed computer games that encourage middle and high school students to resist peer pressure and refrain from joining gangs through a series of scenarios that result in good or bad consequences. The students partnered with the Virginia Attorney General’s office to distribute the game to schools across the Commonwealth.

Hampden-Sydney College Hampden-Sydney, 434-223-6000 Hampden-Sydney’s mandatory rhetoric program offers three introductory writing classes, as well as a minor, that train students to write persuasively and creatively in various contexts—even on topics as diverse as Star Wars or the concept of masculinity. H-SC rhetoric professors Dr. Elizabeth Deis and Dr. Lowell Frye co-authored an article for The Atlantic in October 2012, arguing for the importance of passionate prose, and noting, “teaching students to write and speak well has been a primary focus here since our founding in 1775.”

Hollins University Roanoke, 800-456-9595

Poets & Writers magazine recognized the creative writing program at Hollins as “one of the most productive creative writing programs in the country.” The current U.S. Poet Laureate is Natasha Trethewey, a graduate of Hollins. Other graduates have won the Pulitzer Prize, as well as National Endowment for the Arts and Guggenheim awards.


Lynchburg College

College of William and Mary

Lynchburg, 434-544-8100

Williamsburg, 757-221-4000 Through a partnership with Fudan University in Shanghai, the Executive M.B.A. at W&M focuses on Chinese business practices and culture, with lessons from top scholars at Fudan’s School of Management. The goal is to prepare students for a shifting global economy, and students actually visit China to learn how the Chinese do business. In 2013, Bloomberg Businessweek named W&M’s undergraduate business program the best in the nation.

Lynchburg’s major in economic crime prevention with a minor in fraud investigation is the only program of its kind in the state. This interdisciplinary program requires students to study accounting, computer forensics, economics and psychology of law and prepares them for entry-level positions in fields such as law enforcement and corporate security management.

How Do You Get to Carnegie Hall? drawing by courtney gerbec titled “michael and doxrang”

Richmond region students win big at Scholastic Art & Writing Awards. by joan tupponce Cosby High School student Kinsey Childress listened intently as singing sensation Usher and actress Sara Jessica Parker talked to award winners at The Scholastic Art & Writing Awards ceremony at Carnegie Hall in July. Childress, a junior at the Chesterfield County school, was at the prestigious venue to receive a gold medal for her ceramic and glass artwork. Childress is one of five high school students from the Greater Richmond Region who won national recognition in the awards. The remaining four winners—Summer Balcom of Manchester High, Courtney Gerboc of Cosby High and Katherine Monks and Mackenzie Neal of Maggie L. Walker Governor’s School all won silver medals for their entries. Balcom, who graduated from Manchester in June, won two consecutive national silver medals for her work in mixed media. “Carnegie Hall has such a reputation,” she says. “It gives you a wake-up call that you did something fantastic.” The Scholastic Art & Writing Awards date back to 1923. Past winners have included Andy Warhol, Truman Capote and Robert Redford, so these kids are in pretty good company.

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Hands on. Minds on.

Hokies think, and Hokies do. The first life-size robot, a self-sustaining solar house, and a bridge for schoolchildren in Haiti. Now, it’s your turn. Lose track of time and get lost in your thoughts. Hone your idea. Then test it. Launch it into action. Build a model, serve a community, give a speech. Leave your imprint.

2013 Open House Dates Saturday, September 28 Sunday, September 29

Saturday, November 9 Sunday, November 10

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top high schools & colleges 2013 Arts & Humanities continued Mary Baldwin College Staunton, 540-887-7019 Mary Baldwin’s partnership with the American Shakespeare Center gives students in Mary Baldwin’s coed Shakespeare and Performance graduate program the experience of studying and performing Shakespeare’s works under their original staging conditions at Blackfriars Playhouse. The program is the only one in the country that focuses on a collaborative, company-based model, where students are responsible for coordinating all aspects of production.

Old Dominion University

Roanoke College

Norfolk, 757-683-3000

Salem, 540-375-2500

ODU’s M.A. in lifespan and digital communications focuses on how different age groups interact with and are affected by media and other forms of human communication in a changing technological landscape. This year, the program, which is the only one of its kind in the country, graduated its first class of six students, all of whom completed a capstone project. One student produced a documentary about how different age groups experience zoos and aquariums; another studied the possibility of stamping tombstones with QR codes.

Students at Roanoke College forgo traditional general education requirements and take the Intellectual Inquiry curriculum, which offers a series of 13 liberal arts classes like “The Search for Good/God in Fantasy Literature” and “The Mathematics of Democracy,” in which students actively pursue answers to urgent questions while using critical thinking, research and reasoning skills.

University of Richmond Richmond, 804-289-8000 More than 50 percent of all Robins School of Business undergraduates study in countries like Kenya, Singapore and Thailand. While abroad, students can perform community service, apply business skills in internships or complete international business consultancy projects. In 2011 and 2012, Bloomberg Businessweek ranked UR’s international business education program #1 in the country.

University of Virginia Charlottesville, 434-924-0311 The Institute of the Humanities and Global Cultures, opened in 2011 with a grant from the Andrew W. Mellon Foundation, attracts guest speakers from around the world. The Institute has also entered into a global collaboration with Delhi University in India, Nanjing University in China, the University of London and the University of Oxford to form the Global Humanities Initiative, which will study and discuss the state of the humanities in academia.

Virginia Commonwealth University Richmond, 804-828-0100 VCU’s Brandcenter students collaborate to create and market brands in an advertising agency model. Creative Magazine named the Brandcenter the #1 advertising program in the country, while in 2007 BusinessWeek named it among the world’s top design schools. U.S. News & World Report ranks VCU’s graduate sculpture program #1 and its School of the Arts #4 in the country overall (#1 in public universities).

Great Expectations

Virginia Polytechnic Institute and State University

Anne Holton, former first lady of Virginia, fosters education.

photo by ash daniel

by joan tupponce When former first lady Anne Holton was asked to serve as statewide director of Great Expectations, she saw the job as a natural fit. The initiative helps young adults (17 to 24) who are or were affiliated with the foster care system make the transition to college. Holton had seen that most foster care children “need an extra hand” when she served as a judge in Juvenile and Domestic Relations Court in Richmond. She continued her work with foster care children when her husband, Tim Kaine, was elected governor in 2006. “All of the work I did with my first lady hat was connected to helping young people in foster care be successful,” she says, adding that she hopes to increase the odds that foster care teens will continue their education after high school. Great Expectations started five years ago as an initiative of a private philanthropist. At the time, the program was in five of the state’s community colleges. Today it is in 17 of Virginia’s 23 community colleges. Since 2008, more than 1,200 students have gone through the program. “We serve about 500 students a year,” Holton says. “We had 44 individuals graduate or get some kind of post-secondary certificate this past calendar year.” The program provides everything from encouragement and guidance to academic and emotional support. “A lot of kids come in with major academic issues,” Holton says. “We help them know there is help when they need it.” Great Expectations is still supported by private donations. For more information, visit

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Blacksburg, 540-231-6000 Virginia Tech’s Hospitality and Tourism Management program offers classes in restaurant and food management, hospitality event management and global tourism management. The department is a top national research recruiting school for multiple international hospitality corporations like Marriott, Hilton and Hyatt. HTM was ranked sixth in the country and seventh in the world by the Journal of Hospitality and Tourism Research in 2011.


Appomattox Regional Governor’s School for the Arts and Technology Petersburg, 804-722-0200 More than 60 diverse arts and technology classes are designed to prepare students for college. Dance majors take classes at the Richmond Ballet, while music students compete in major festivals, like the Berklee Jazz Band Festival, where they finished fourth in the small ensemble/combo group last February. Arts and technology students share core classes, like biology, where, in one unit they modeled human skeletons out of masking tape.

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Expand your knowledge and career-building opportunities with STEM-H at Old Dominion University. ODU is the third-largest producer of Science, Technology, Engineering, Math and Health Sciences (STEM-H) grads in the state. Old Dominion’s STEM-H programs feature high nursing pass rates, access to innovative technology and cutting-edge research. With an enrollment of 25,000, ODU’s nationally recognized faculty use real-world expertise and award-winning teaching to challenge students to achieve their highest goals. ODU connects students to internships, co-ops, student research, service learning, clinical training and fieldwork opportunities close to home and anywhere in the world. Old Dominion also offers an award-winning distance learning program with STEM-H courses offered online and on extended campuses throughout the region.

For more information about STEM-H curriculums and course offerings, visit

Old Dominion University • 5115 Hampton Blvd. • Norfolk VA 23529 • (757) 683-3000 •

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top high schools & colleges 2013 Arts & Humanities continued Arlington Public Schools Arlington, 703-228-6010 H.B. Woodlawn Secondary School encourages “choice and voice,” allowing students to create individualized schedules that allow heavier course loads, independent studies, internships and dual-enrollments. This flexibility permitted one student to teach an English course on James Bond to fellow students, while another taught a poetry course on rap and hiphop. Several students have worked individually with theater teachers to develop one-person shows.

Carlisle School Axton, 276-632-7288 The Carlisle School is the only school in the Commonwealth that offers the International Baccalaureate program at all grade levels, beginning in elementary school. Ninety-four out of 97 of Carlisle’s IB students have earned the diploma, making the school’s program one of the most successful in the world. Many of Carlisle’s IB students have earned a full year’s worth of college credit from UVA, W&M, Virginia Tech and other institutions.

Community High School Roanoke, 540-345-1688 Community offers a distinct fine arts curriculum that takes students through the entire creative process in a discipline. Film students, for instance, study all stages of filmmaking, from storyboarding to producing to marketing a film. Curatorial students work at the school’s Liminal Gallery, founded in 2011. Standout arts classes include history of European cinema, animation, advanced painting studio and music production.

Fairfax Christian School

Henrico County Public Schools

New Covenant Schools

Henrico, 804-652-3600

Lynchburg, 434-847-8313

The Center for Education and Human Development at Glen Allen High School is a specialty center for students aiming to work in education and business. Students volunteer as tutors at local elementary schools, lead staff development for teachers on topics like social media and create online courses available to the public. Seniors complete a semester-long internship at area businesses, including programs such as Bank of America Student Leaders.

New Covenant’s use of the classical Trivium curriculum immerses students in the art and craft of rhetoric across disciplines. New Covenant uses “great questions” in all courses, which involves a student-led discussion on any particular idea. By their junior year, students start reading selected works in Greek or Latin. The liberal arts curriculum challenges seniors to write a thesis of a “controversial nature," such as one from 2012: “Submission or Rebellion: An In-Depth Study of the Ethics of the American Revolution.”

The Madeira School McLean, 703-556-8200 Madeira students observe a standard school day four days a week, with Wednesdays reserved for Co-Curriculum, which allows students to pursue educational activities outside of the classroom. Juniors are placed in internships on Capitol Hill, while seniors can customize their internship to their personal interests. Students have completed internships with C-SPAN, Ford’s Theatre, National Geographic and others. Freshmen and sophomores use the time for clubs, interscholastic sports or field trips.

Maggie L. Walker Governor’s School for Government and International Studies Richmond, 804-354-6800 Maggie Walker offers classes in more foreign languages than any school of its kind in the state. All students must study two foreign languages as part of the school-wide cultural understanding curriculum, preparing them for college studies and careers in politics and government. Students study one language for four years and another for two years, with the option for additional study. Upper-level language classes focus on history, culture and literature.

The New School of Northern Virginia Fairfax, 703-691-3040 At the New School, seniors are given an “essential question," which they must answer in a one-hour discussion and a 10- to 15-page research paper. This exam serves as the basis for the Early College Project, in which students can present their work as a pubic exhibition in any medium. One student researched the role of women in World War II and then created an audio archive of interviews with women who lived during that time.

Norfolk Academy Norfolk, 757-461-6236 Through the Center for Civic and Global Leadership, students complete a four-year fellowship: Chesapeake Bay fellows have studied with the Chesapeake Bay Foundation; Global Health fellows have traveled to Haiti for research; and International Relations fellows will be visiting Ottawa and Washington, D.C., to learn about foreign policy. In 2012, Norfolk Academy was one of three schools in the nation to receive a grant from the Edward E. Ford Foundation to support the center.

Vienna, 703-759-5100 Fairfax Christian School offers the USA Compete center, which holds intensive English classes for international students. Students are placed in classes according to skill, and receive full English immersion with exposure to American history, literature and culture. An intensive summer camp experience focuses specifically on American etiquette.

Fredericksburg Christian Schools Fredericksburg, 540-373-5355 Students interested in broadcast journalism get hands-on experience at the WWER-FM radio station housed on FCS’s campus. Students produce shows like Early Birds, which covers student life and current events, and 8th Period Music Bash which develops its playlist according to students’ tastes. FCS founded the radio station with the intention of training more Christian journalists for careers in mainstream American media.

Hargrave Military Academy Hargrave’s Colin Powell Center for Leadership & Ethics offers leadership classes for freshmen and sophomores during the school year and one-week institutes over the summer for juniors and seniors. During the summer institute, students apply the fundamentals of leadership and followership to the military program and practice communication skills. Cadet officers collaborate to draft the mission statement for the upcoming school year’s corps of cadets.

photo by robert radifera

Chatham, 434-432-2481

The double helix-shaped aluminum staircase in the Manning Family Science Building at Woodberry Forest School features famous quotations, selected by students, in the glass panels.

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Marymount University





Dance Theatre Visual Arts Vocal Music Musical Theatre Instrumental Music




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Join us for a CAMPUS VISIT DAY









Arlington, Virginia



Where Dreams are Made....

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October 20 • November 10 ACTIVITIES INCLUDE

• sessions on academics, admissions, and financial aid • opportunities to learn about campus life from students and coaches • tour of campus and residence halls

photo by Wendy W. Maness

Auditions for the 2014 - 15 Academic Year January 2014 contact or call 757-451-4711

We look forward to seeing you! painting by Natasha Levandoski

photo by Martin Barritt

photo by David A. Beloff

RSVP by phone at (703) 284-1500 or

photo by David A. Beloff

Find us on FACEBOOK

Preparing the next generation of dynamic, creative thinkers from Kindergarten through 12th grade.















To schedule a tour or receive more information, call 804.726.3300.

s ditor’

Ch 2 0 1 3 oi c e

103 North Mooreland Road Richmond, Virginia 23229 Collegiate School does not discriminate on the basis of race, color, religion, gender, sexual orientation, or national origin.

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top high schools & colleges 2013 Arts & Humanities continued Norfolk Collegiate School Norfolk, 757-480-2885 NCS features a communication arts department, allowing students to pursue filmmaking, animation and journalism. Every year, the school hosts a journalism conference, which draws 100 area students, teachers and media professionals for seminars and keynote speeches from seasoned journalists. Last year, in partnership with The Virginian-Pilot, NCS received a grant from the American Society of News Editors for digital camera equipment.

North Cross School Roanoke, 540-989-6641 The Horace G. Fralin Program for Global Studies immerses students in language and culture through academics and study abroad. Students who wish to be recognized as Global Studies Scholars must go on an international trip, take classes such as “Global Conflicts: Resolutions and the Leaders Who Make Peace” and attend cultural events such as the Harvard Model United Nations. The next trip, scheduled for June 2014, will focus on Australia and the Great Barrier Reef.

Walsingham Academy Upper School

Emory & Henry College

Williamsburg, 757-229-6026

Emory, 276-944-4121

The Walsingham Madrigals, a handpicked ensemble of 60 students, has performed at the Beijing and London Olympics, as well as for Pope Benedict XVI and Pope Francis I. This Advent, the group will take an eight-day pilgrimage to Italy. On Dec. 29, the Madrigals will be the headlining choir at St. Peter’s Basilica. The Madrigals will also sing at the crèche Dec. 31, during Pope Francis’ prayer for world peace.

Ninety-five percent of students complete short- and longterm service through the Appalachian Center for Community Service. Service opportunities include volunteering at the Boys & Girls Club, Habitat for Humanity, Crossroads Medical Public and other organizations. Degrees in public policy and community service are also offered through the center. Exemplary students may be eligible for Bonner, AmeriCorps and Appalachian Associates scholarships.

Co-ops and Partnerships

George Mason University


Fairfax, 703-993-1000

Bridgewater College Bridgewater, 540-828-8000 Bridgewater College is one of just five Virginia colleges that allow Palestinian students to obtain a degree via the Hope Fund, an organization that secures and coordinates scholarships from U.S. colleges. Most participants of the Hope Fund hail from refugee camps and occupied territories in Palestine. The scholarships, valued up to $60,000, were awarded to four Bridgewater students last year.

Christopher Newport University Pope John Paul the Great Catholic high school Dumfries, 703-445-0300 The school’s four-year bioethics program is the only one of its kind in the country, with courses like “Bioethical Issues at the End of Life,” “Health: An Ethical Approach” and “The Human Person in a Biotech Age,” emphasizing research, Socratic-style discourse and debate, and writing. In 2012, The Manassasbased Cardinal Newman Society named Pope John Paul one of the top 50 Catholic high schools in the U.S.

Stuart Hall Staunton, 540-885-0356 Stuart Hall emphasizes a liberal arts education, character development and global engagement, while also allowing students to concentrate in music, the visual arts or theater, with the bulk of concentration classes completed during junior and senior year. Seniors complete a capstone project related to their discipline, whether a performance or portfolio.

Newport News, 757-594-7000

In October 2012, GMU and The Smithsonian National Zoo partnered to create the Smithsonian-Mason School of Conservation in the Shenandoah Valley near Front Royal. Undergraduate students can live at the center for one of two 16-credit semester programs, focusing on either effective conservation practices or applied conservation. The school also houses Virginia Working Landscapes, a program that works to restore native grasslands on private properties.

Liberty University Lynchburg, 434-582-2000

At CNU’s Center for Wetlands Conservation, students coordinate with government officials and nonprofit organizations to research environmental conservation methods. Students also assist in the CWC’s conservation-based field projects, like the investigation of post-fire regeneration of Atlantic White Cedar or an investigation of tree growth in the man-made wetlands of Loudon County.

The School of Aeronautics has signed an agreement with American Eagle Airlines Pilot Pipeline Program, in which students who accumulate 1,500 hours of flight time and meet other Federal Aviation Administration requirements will receive an offer of employment and a $10,000 scholarship. LU has already established similar partnerships with ExpressJet and Freedom Aviation in Lynchburg. LU has one of the two biggest Christian university aviation programs in the country.

College of William and Mary

Marymount University

Williamsburg, 757-221-4000

Arlington, 703-522-5600

W&M’s Graduate School of Marine Science is housed at the Virginia Institute of Marine Science in Gloucester Point. Founded in 1938, it is the third largest marine research and education center in the country. W&M offers an M.S. and Ph.D. in marine science, as well as several internship programs at the facility. Programs of research include the Fisheries Genetics Program, which studies the genetic structure of commercially and recreationally important fisheries.

Marymount’s partnership with Fairfax and Arlington counties’ public school systems puts graduate education students in classrooms with practicing teachers for a nine-month internship, during which the students receive hands-on experience and a tuition stipend. Following the internship, students earn a master’s degree and Commonwealth teaching licensure. Nearly 100 percent of interns are hired by either Fairfax or Arlington county every year.

Master of the Universe

John Hawley, UVA astronomer, wins Shaw Prize.

photo by dan addison

by bland crowder When John Hawley received an email telling him he had won the prestigious Shaw Prize in astronomy, he thought it was another Internet scam: “I started looking for the Nigerian return address and a request for my bank account number!” But this was no hoax. Astronomer Hawley, 55, UVA’s associate dean for the sciences, and longtime research partner Steve Balbus, 59, formerly of UVA but now at the University of Oxford, will receive the Shaw—including a $1 million award—in Hong Kong, Sept. 23. The prize, the Asian equivalent of a Nobel, recognizes their research into how cosmic gases, orbiting some center of high gravity (like a black hole), collapse and accrete into a disk, a process key to the formation of objects in the universe. To accrete, Hawley says, the gases must lose their energy and the momentum that keeps them in orbit. The energy simply radiates out, but how is the momentum lost? Hawley and Balbus discovered that even a weak magnetic field would have that effect; the gases “spiral in” toward the center, and an accretion disk results. “It is a reward for a lifetime of work,” says Hawley, ”so it seems appropriate to put it toward retirement from a lifetime of work.”

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virginia living

8/22/13 4:35 PM


Church Schools in the Episcopal Diocese of Virginia Providing outstanding educational experiences throughout the Commonwealth

St. Stephen’s & St. Agnes School Coed JK-12 Day Alexandria

All Girls JK-12 Day Richmond

All Boys JK-12 Day Richmond

Christchurch School Coed 9-12 Boarding & Day Middlesex County

All Girls 8-12 Boarding/Day Tappahannock

Each of the Church Schools admits students without regard to race, color religion, or national or ethnic origin to all the rights, privileges, programs and activities generally accorded or made available to the students of the school.

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Coed PreK-12 Day 8-12 Boarding Staunton

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top high schools & colleges 2013 Co-ops and Partnerships continued Patrick Henry College Purcellville, 540-338-1776 PHC’s apprenticeship program permits students to complete as many as half of their degree requirements through internships. PHC students have consistently been offered internships at the White House, U.S. Congress, and other organizations in Washington, D.C. Half of the government major’s requirements include practicum in American politics and policy, international politics and policy and mock trial.

Chatham Hall

Danville Public Schools

Chatham, 434-432-2941

Danville, 434-799-6400

Chatham Hall’s Cape Town program connects students with South African nonprofits for one week of service. Students can spend their spring break tutoring at Caravelle Primary School in the underprivileged Bloekombos Township, volunteering at the Brave Heart Home orphanage or constructing neighborhood gardens through Soil for Life. Between 2008 and 2011, one in three Chatham Hall students participated in this alternative spring break.

The Galileo Magnet High School, opened in 2002, works directly with NASA to offer special curricula and programs to its approximately 250 students. As a result of this collaboration, Galileo’s students can study advanced communications and networking technology, air and space technology and biotechnology. NASA’s assistance goes back to the school’s roots, when Langley Research Center helped in writing the school’s original grant proposal.

Shenandoah University Winchester, 540-665-4500 SU’s Northern Virginia campus in Leesburg is being renovated to house the partnership between its three healthcare programs and INOVA Health System. Starting in fall 2014, graduate students in occupational therapy, physical therapy and physician assistant studies will have access to a six-table cadaver lab and a health sciences library. The expansion of these medical graduate programs stems from a need to strengthen the regional healthcare workforce.

University of Mary Washington Fredericksburg, 540-654-1000 In July of 2008, University of Mary Washington partnered with the Naval Surface Warfare Center Dahlgren, giving their chemistry students the opportunity to work in the Navy facilities alongside Navy personnel in relation to chemical, biological and radiological defense. In June 2013, this agreement was expanded, allowing students to participate in Navy research, gain more insight into their field of study and apply for internships within the Navy.

Virginia Union University Richmond, 804-257-5600 The City of Richmond Police Training Academy is housed at Virginia Union University, making VUU the only historically black college and university with a police-training academy on campus. All police training for the Richmond Police Department takes place at the Academy and, in the same building, VUU students in the Department of Criminology and Criminal Justice are taught by local police officers and judges.


Arlington Public Schools Arlington, 703-228-6010 Wakefield High School’s theater department partners with Signature Theatre, a Tony Award-winning, professional theater in nearby Shirlington Village. Wakefield students can audition for Signature productions and receive mentorship from a professional playwright. Students also work as crewmembers, stage managers and co-designers. Acclaimed artist Joe Calarco writes an original play for each production.

Cape Henry Collegiate School Virginia Beach, 757-481-2446 The Smithsonian Panama Field Study program at Cape Henry allows students to participate in field studies supervised by scientists in Panama. Before going to Panama, students take a yearlong, neotropical science course. While in Panama, students serve the Malambo orphanage and stay with a Panamanian family for Spanish immersion. Cape Henry is the only school in the country invited to take part in the program.

Virginia Tech’s New Front Door $100 million arts center to open this fall in Blacksburg. by joe tennis With a name like Virginia Tech, you just don’t think about the arts—well, not at first. But, with the $100 million Center for the Arts at Virginia Tech opening on the Blacksburg campus, you soon will, promises Ruth Waalkes, the center’s executive director, who describes the facility as “a pretty major enhancement.” Opening in October, this mammoth addition comprises 150,000 square feet, standing several stories tall. And it’s easy to find, just off Main Street, much like “a front door” to the university, Waalkes says. “There was a very strategic choice to place the center there. There’s also a very strong desire to make sure the center has a positive impact on the town, as well.” A 1,260-seat performance hall commands center stage—literally—with superb acoustics and a winged design, accented by tiered seating and opera boxes. This hall comes wired with enough technical flexibility and audiovisual capabilities to present, professionally, all forms of music, theater and dance, Waalkes says. So far, about 20 international and national touring performing artists or companies have been booked for the first season, including This American Life storyteller Ira Glass, Nov. 23, and the Roanoke Symphony Orchestra, Dec. 7. “This campus and the area are now going to get the same sorts of high-level performing arts that other major university communities have had for years,” says Doug Witney, the center’s director of production services. Additionally, the new center’s visual arts galleries will include the four-story experimental “Cube,” which can be primed to exhibit a wide range of traditional and trans-media works, installations and immersive environments. Adjacent research studios housing the Institute for Creativity, Arts, and Technology—or the I-CAT—can fuse science, engineering, arts and design. The center comes to the Tech campus as part of an arts initiative proposed by Virginia Tech President Charles Steger. Waalkes considers this center the cornerstone of that initiative: education is the primary goal, but it will also host talks, workshops and demonstrations. “We’re not emphasizing the arts here in order just to create bigger arts programs,” Waalkes says. “We really want to impact all students on the campus.”

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top high schools & colleges 2013 Co-ops and Partnerships continued Fairfax County Public Schools Falls Church, 571-423-1200 In Fairfax County, a partnership with the nonprofit Foundation for Applied Technical Education (FATE) allows vocational students to apply their skills in a professional environment. In May, more than 90 students from eight high schools seeking certification in fields such as plumbing, electricity and contracting helped build a house valued at $800,000 in Springfield. Profits from the real estate sale benefitted FATE.

Fishburne Military School The school’s new partnership with New Day USA Foundation in support of U.S. military veterans’ families grants one student a $2,500 scholarship beginning this year. Preference will be given to a student whose parent has been killed in action or is 100 percent disabled as a result of service. The winner of the scholarship will be held to the same college prep expectations Fishburne holds for all of its students, with no additional academic or community service requirements.

Governor’s School at Innovation Park Manassas, 703-993-7027 Housed on George Mason University’s Prince William Campus, this governor’s school offers select STEM courses for college credit through dual enrollment. Students take morning classes taught by GMU faculty members and return to their home high school in the afternoon. Earning up to 32 college credits in biology, chemistry, physics, pre-calculus or calculus, students meet many basic science major requirements before even starting college.

Liberty Christian Academy Lynchburg, 434-832-2000 LCA awards full-tuition Liberty University scholarships to all academically-qualified students who attend LCA from grades 3 through 12. With Liberty University tuition around $28,000 a year, the scholarship, valued at $77,000, speaks for itself. Seniors can also take classes at LU at a reduced rate for credit.

Loudoun County Public Schools Ashburn, 571-252-1000 Selected students at the Academy of Science partner with students from Singapore’s Hwa Chong Institution to collaborate on international research. Singaporean students visit in the fall and establish a timeline for projects with their American partners. For the rest of the year, the students share their progress on a Wiki page. The American students then go to Singapore the following summer and develop a presentation with their Singaporean partners for the school science fair.

Norfolk Academy Norfolk, 757-461-6236 Norfolk Academy’s Medical Externship program, NAME, gives students the opportunity to interact with the private healthcare industry. Begun in 2006, students participate in a series of medical education programs and shadow a healthcare professional. The program unites resources and facilities at Eastern Virginia Medical School and Sentara Healthcare with Norfolk Academy. One student interned at Mercy Medical Airlift, interviewing patients who had used the services of MMA.

photo by norfolk abc channel 13 WVEC.

Waynesboro, 540-946-7700

Chantilly’s Westfield High School marching band, the Marching Bulldogs, has been invited to perform in the 2014 Tournament of Roses Parade in Pasadena, California. Only three Virginia bands have ever performed in the parade’s 125-year history.

St. Anne’s-Belfield School

Wakefield School

Charlottesville, 434-296-5106

The Plains, 540-253-7600

Partnered with local food producers, nearly all of STAB’s meals are sourced from 60 nearby farms. Twin Oaks in Louisa County provides the school’s tofu, while Goodwin Creek Farm in Afton provides its bread. MarVa Maid, a farmerowned cooperative with strict animal care and food quality guidelines, supplies STAB with milk and other dairy products. Black Bear Composting composts all of the school kitchen’s organic waste.

The school’s partnership with the Cheetah Conservation Fund, the Conservation and Research Center, and the Smithsonian Institute allows for real-life observation and training in the field of wildlife conservation and management. Students may visit CCF in Namibia over spring break as part of the coursework for classes in conservation ecology and animal behavior. There, students observe cheetah rehabilitation and tour the veterinary hospital and museum of conservation.

St. Christopher’s School

Washington County Public Schools

Richmond, 804-282-3185

Abingdon, 276-739-3000

St. Christopher’s Luck Leadership Center hosts several leadership programs, including the T. Justin Moore Summer Institute on Leadership and Public Service. This past summer’s institute focused on food issues concerning social justice, health and economics in Metro Richmond. Sixteen students from 15 area high schools interned at Shalom Farms and volunteered at Feedmore’s Community Kitchen and toured Martin’s with a dietician.

Since 2010, the local Barter Theatre has worked with Abingdon High School through Project R.E.A.L. (Reinforcing Education through Artistic Learning). A Barter artist develops a kinesthetic exercise that complements a core class lesson and pushes students to physically explore ideas, solve problems and think creatively. A lesson on the Renaissance, for instance, focused on the concept of rebirth, with students brainstorming ways to rebirth the United States, sculpting ideas with their bodies and penning response poems.

St. Margaret’s School St. Margaret’s international exchange program gives students the opportunity to study in New Zealand or Chile. Students take classes at a sister school, also named for St. Margaret of Scotland, as part of an agreement set forth by The Queen Margaret of Scotland Girls’ School Association. The exchange takes place while classes are in session at the host school and during the sending school’s academic break. Two to four American girls participate in the program every year, with four to five girls coming to St. Margaret’s of Tappahannock.

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Wise County Public Schools

Tappahannock, 804-443-3357


Wise, 276-328-8017 Wise County’s three high schools have a special collaboration with Coal Education Development and Resources, a regional program that focuses on education about coal as an energy resource and seeks to increase public knowledge of the coal industry. Through this partnership, CEDAR bestows grants to Wise County teachers that allow them to integrate the study of coal into the regular curriculum, from lessons on economics to environmental science, and participate in a regional coal fair that features original student projects.

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top high schools & colleges 2013 Capital Improvements COLLEGES

Bridgewater College Bridgewater, 540-828-8000 Bridgewater College advocates energy efficiency with its new vehicle charging station for faculty and staff. The station will soon be open to the public to provide charges for four electric campus utility vehicles, which can be used to tour Bridgewater’s growing facilities. Nininger Hall will increase by 16,000 square feet, with a renovated gymnasium, updated classrooms and a laboratory for the Health and Human Sciences program, a new turf field and stadium lights. The finished project will be open by August 2014.

Christopher Newport University Newport News, 757-594-7000 Christopher Newport began with a single building in a former high school. Recently, it completed a $500 million capital improvements campaign, with plans to spend the same amount over the next 10 years. Completed features include residence halls, a university police system and the nearly 250,000-square-foot Ferguson Center for the Arts. Upcoming projects include an 80,870-square-foot student success building and a four-story bell tower.

Emory & Henry College Emory, 276-944-4121 There are more than $50 million in recently completed and planned construction projects at E&H. The LEED-certified Hickory Hall dorm, completed in the spring of 2013, is the largest passive energy design building in the U.S., providing 117 beds in double-occupancy rooms. Two notable projects under construction are improvements to the Fred Selfe Athletic Center, including the new, 18,000-square-foot Brooks Field House, and the Woodrow W. McGlothin Center for the Arts, which broke ground in April this year.

George Mason University

Radford University

Fairfax, 703-993-1000

Radford, 540-831-5000

Various campus construction projects include a $73 million health sciences center, a $57 million library addition and a $52 million science building renovation. The library addition, which broke ground in late 2012, is scheduled for completion in May 2015. The addition will make Fenwick Library the university’s flagship library. The health sciences building, which will break ground in July 2014, will provide additional academic and research space and consolidate the College of Health & Human Services in one location.

Radford University has two major capital projects under construction. The new Fitness and Wellness Center, scheduled to open in late 2013, will contain two facilities: An indoor graded running and walking track that will span two floors, and a 10,000-square-foot multiple activity court, suitable for various individual and team sports. The Center for the Sciences Building, expected to open fall 2014, will be a $49 million, 12,000-square-foot facility with interior glass walls where freshman can observe seniors at work.

James Madison University

Randolph-Macon College

Harrisonburg, 540-568-6211

Ashland, 804-752-7200

JMU currently has over $110 million in projects under construction. Duke Hall, the fine arts building, is undergoing a $43 million renovation so that it may accommodate over 2,000 people and earn LEED certification. The former Rockingham Memorial Hospital will be renovated into the new Student Success Center, housing offices like career and academic planning and disability services. Both buildings are slated to open in 2014.

Completed in May 2013, the $8.7 million Brock Commons is one of the newest buildings on campus. It features a variety of amenities for academics and student life, such as a bookstore, a movie theater, a café and the student mailroom. Brock will also serve as a student meeting place where various on-campus clubs and organizations can hold meetings. The new student commons is part of the Building Extraordinary Campaign, a $100 million initiative.

Liberty University

University of Mary Washington

Lynchburg, 434-582-2000

Fredericksburg, 540-654-1000

LU has launched a $400 million campus improvement plan through 2020. During the 2012-2013 academic year, the 33,000-square-foot Hancock Welcome Center and the new Liberty Baseball Stadium were added to campus. Hancock is equipped with touchscreen monitors and interactive photo centers. The baseball stadium, completed this summer, has seating for 2,500 people, a state-of-the-art press area and an Astroturf surface.

University of Mary Washington began constructing its new, four-story, $39 million, 76,000-square-foot Information and Technology Convergence Center in June 2012, which is scheduled to open in 2014. Features will include a digital theater, media labs, a walk-up “e-station bar” and a small video production studio. The Center will also house UMW’s Data Center and the Speaking and Writing Center.

University of Richmond

Norfolk State University

Richmond, 804-289-8000

Norfolk, 757-823-8600 Norfolk State University’s new Lyman Beecher Brooks Library building, which opened in Spring 2012 and won an America’s Best Buildings of the Year award from Building Magazine, displays the school’s Harrison B. Wilson Archives in an updated art gallery. The gallery features 400 pieces of African art, exhibited in new glass cases, illuminated by track lighting. The archival collection includes a variety of Civil War letters, oral histories and papers from African-American families. The library’s total cost amounted to $37 million.

In the past four years, UR has completed over $100 million worth of new construction. This includes the 57,000-squarefoot Carole Weinstein International Center, home to visiting scholars and 12 different academic departments, and Robins Stadium, the 8,700-seat home for Spiders football since 2010. Now construction on the South Campus Apartments and the Westhampton Residence Hall is underway, and both are scheduled to open in the fall of 2014. The units will accommodate 176 and 157 students, respectively.

Leading by Example

Roanoke City Public Schools’ Rita Bishop named Virginia Superintendent of the Year.

photo by sam dean

by joe tennis For some superintendents, commanding a school system may be viewed as a temporary post while waiting for the next great opportunity. But that’s not what has kept Dr. Rita Bishop in Roanoke City Public Schools since 2007. “I have never been much about career,” Bishop says. “What gets me to work every day is 13,000 children.” Bishop commands an economically disadvantaged school population, where 74 percent of children receive free or reduced-price lunch. Yet the educator’s good-natured obsession with overcoming obstacles—and encouraging students to finish diplomas at the city’s Forest Park Academy or two high schools—has won considerable praise: She was named Virginia’s Superintendent of the Year by the Virginia Association of School Superintendents for 2013, which puts Bishop in the running for the National Superintendent of the Year award, to be named in February 2014. “I have a great team of leaders. They are dedicated to skillfully mobilize resources and eliminate things that are not working,” says Bishop, who describes herself as “very” tough taskmaster. Bishop, 69, earned her stripes as a teacher four decades ago in the impoverished community of Salinas, California, and later in San Jose. “Salinas absolutely galvanized, for me, that if I worked really hard as a teacher that there would be no child that I couldn’t teach,” she says. “I never wanted to be in the easy places.”

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The One Subject Plan Fork Union Military Academy follows a unique curriculum schedule in our Upper School (grades 9-12 and postgraduate). It is called the One Subject Plan.

Instead of juggling four to six classes every day, or following a “block schedule,” our students take one subject at a time. The year is divided into five grading periods of about seven weeks each. Each grading period, the student takes one class. Talk about individual attention!

In a typical school, a teacher is responsible for teaching 80 to 150 different students every day in several different classes. At Fork Union Military Academy, a teacher has only one classroom of students (usually about 10 to 17 students) each day, every day, for seven weeks. This enables the teacher to get to know each student as an individual, and enables each student to concentrate fully on each subject. There are no more nights of deciding “should I do my math homework or my writing assignment first?” or jumping the mind back and forth between geometry and grammar. Concentration goes up, learning goes up, and grades go up.

Download our white paper “About the One Subject Plan” from our website to learn more:

Success stories begin here.

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top high schools & colleges 2013 Capital Improvements continued Virginia Commonwealth University Richmond, 804-828-0100 Various capital improvements across the Monroe Park and Medical College of Virginia campuses include two highlights: the $158.6 million Medicine Education Building and the $32 million Institute for Contemporary Art. The 200,000-squarefoot medical building, which opened in March, is LEED certified. The 38,000-square-foot art institute, which will open in 2015, will feature a double-fronted design, sculpture garden and 240-plus-seat performance space.

Virginia Polytechnic Institute and State University Blacksburg, 540-231-6000 The two main construction projects taking place on campus now are the $100 million Center for the Arts and the $100 million Signature Engineering building. The Center for the Arts will span 147,000 square feet, featuring a performance hall that seats 1,260, several visual arts galleries for traditional and digital media, and the Center for Creative Technologies in the Arts. The Signature building is being funded in part by a $25 million anonymous private gift, the largest single cash gift in the history of the university.

Washington and Lee University Lexington, 540-458-8400 Washington and Lee University is spending $22.5 million to renovate two of its residence halls: Gaines Hall and GrahamLees Hall. Renovation work on the two halls is projected to be finished in December 2014 and will be an upgrade to first-year housing. W&L is also raising money to renovate and expand DuPont Hall into a Center for Global Learning, at a projected cost of $13.5 million.


Benedictine College Preparatory Richmond, 804-708-9500

The A-List Foxcroft program lets students follow their dreams without dropping out.

photo courtesy of foxcroft by gary w. cox

by bland crowder Sloane Coles and Meredith Gibson picked Foxcroft School for the same reason and for different reasons. The common attraction was its Exceptional Proficiency Program. Foxcroft, a girls preparatory school in Middleburg for grades nine through 12, founded 1914, allows qualifying students to pursue a special interest away from campus in addition to their usual studies. Equestrienne Coles, class of 2007, sought advanced experience in show jumping, while actress Gibson, class of 2014, wanted to continue honing her craft in Los Angeles, where she could chase television and film work. The EPP allowed them to both follow their dreams and stay in school. “The program combines the rigor of academics with the opportunity to develop exceptional gifts,” says Mary Lou Leipheimer, head of school at Foxcroft since 1983. Alison Firestone Robitaille, the pioneer EPP participant, in 1991, was an equestrienne, too, and they are still the program’s lifeblood, Leipheimer says. But other pursuits have included music, sport climbing, ballet—even motorcycling. Some programs last as long as three months, but “it’s far from a vacation,” Leipheimer says. The special work places heavy demands on the students, and it is in addition to, not instead of, the usual course load. To ensure that a student stays on schedule with her regular studies, Foxcroft finds and vets a tutor in the student’s city of choice. Gibson, from Waterford, in Loudoun County, enrolled at Foxcroft as a junior, having been training in California and doing all her schoolwork online. She wanted to get back to the “brick-and-mortar setting of a school” and yet still pursue her acting in L.A. “Foxcroft lets me have the best of both worlds.” For Coles, the program let her spend the three winter months training in Florida, and she appreciates the school’s approach. “It’s a lot of work at a young age, and it gives you a work ethic,” she said. “You have a lot more on your plate, you’re not being told what to do, you’re in charge, and there are deadlines to meet. It’s very similar to the real world.” Since leaving Foxcroft, she has been competing at the Grand Prix level. She attended Drew University, majoring in sociology, minoring in business, and playing lacrosse all four years. She has just started her own business in her hometown, The Plains, in Fauquier County, teaching show jumping and training young horses. Acquiring a work ethic doesn’t seem to be a problem for Foxcroft’s EPP students.

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In a controversial move, the school has relocated from its 102-year-old Sheppard Street location to the $5.6 million, 50acre Mary Mother of the Church Abbey campus in Goochland. The new 123,800-square-foot building features 28 classrooms, which are 33 percent larger on average than the former campus’ 21, additional science labs and larger arts space. Benedictine will also have direct access to its athletic fields, which have been located in Goochland since 2000.

Chatham Hall Chatham, 434-432-2941 The former Edmund J. and Lucy Lee Library has been transformed into a new, 12,256-square-foot “Gymnasium for the Mind.” The building features a central common space with mobile furniture, white boards and mediascapes. Many of the group and individual study spaces on two floors and a mezzanine have glass walls that can be written on. The Sandbox, an intellectual “play space,” also houses write-on walls as well as a video projector for multimedia.

Chesapeake Public Schools Chesapeake, 757-647-1053 A $42 million renovation of Indian River High School, including new mechanical systems and energy-efficient lighting, will modernize the school’s infrastructure. A two-story, glass-walled addition to the front of the school makes for an identifiable main entrance to the building, which was previously lacking. Other additions, like a media center and culinary lab, enlarge the facility by approximately 50,000 square feet.

Clarke County Public Schools Berryville, 540-955-6100 Just last year, Clarke County completed and opened the new Clarke County High School. The $33.8 million, 161,000-squarefoot facility, more than doubles the high school’s former 77,000 square feet and features five technical education labs, a fullserve kitchen and a 1,148-seat gym with college regulation-sized basketball court. The new school is also energy efficient, using 20 percent less than the previous building.

The Collegiate School Richmond, 804-741-9700 A new 27,000-square-foot academic commons includes a library, multipurpose space, boardroom, student life offices, writing/communications center, campus archives, covered patio and more. The new facility will also have a variety of technological enhancements, such as a high-tech collaborative and conference space located at the heart of the building with a presentation wall for multimedia displays. The $15.7 million facility opened in August 2013.

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Virginia’s Private Colleges and Universities A long and distinguished tradition of excellence and a national reputation for quality.

Learn more at

Appalachian College of Pharmacy Appalachian School of Law Averett University Bluefield College Bridgewater College Eastern Mennonite University Edward Via College of Osteopathic Medicine Emory & Henry College Ferrum College The George Washington University

Hampden-Sydney College Hampton University Hollins University Jefferson College of Health Sciences Liberty University Lynchburg College Mary Baldwin College Marymount University Randolph College

Randolph-Macon College Roanoke College Shenandoah University Sweet Briar College University of Richmond Virginia Intermont College Virginia Union University Virginia Wesleyan College Washington and Lee University


BRILLIANT Master teachers Highly interactive classes Intellectually curious students

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top high schools & colleges 2013 Capital Improvements continued

St. Catherine’s School

Virginia Beach City Public Schools

Dickenson County Public Schools

Richmond, 804-288-2804

Virginia Beach, 757-263-1000

The 16,155-square-foot Armfield Science Center opened in 2012 as the culmination of a four-phase, $36 million “For Girls Who Will Shape the Future” campaign. The new facility expands upon the previously existing Mullen Hall with an additional 8,730 square feet of space for new labs outfitted for biology, environmental science, physics and chemistry. A new independent research lab will also allow students to conduct their own research beyond their core coursework.

In the spring of 2014, Virginia Beach will open up the brand new, $102 million Kellam High School. The facility will feature six learning communities, state-of the art technology and a sustainable courtyard designed by the school’s AP environmental science students as a model for green landscaping and architecture. The building is expected to meet LEED Gold certification requirements due to features like bamboo wood flooring for the gym and roof-rainwater harvesting for irrigation of the surrounding playing fields.

Clintwood, 276-926-4643 The consolidation of Dickenson County’s two current high schools, Clintwood and Haysi, into one new $101 million high school building is underway. A groundbreaking ceremony was held Aug. 7 to mark the beginning of construction on the new Ridgeview High School. The building, which is scheduled to be completed by August 2015, will also be home to Ridgeview Middle School as well as the Ridgeview Career Center, a center for vocational studies.

Episcopal High School Alexandria, 703-933-3000 As part of its $85 million capital campaign, “The EHS Promise,” Episcopal High School in Alexandria has renovated the academic Townsend Hall and David H. March Library. A 60,000-square-foot athletic facility was added to provide more space to meet the needs of 43 interscholastic teams. The campaign also features a move towards environmental and fiscal sustainability, including care of the campus and a commitment to LEED certification for all construction.

Foxcroft School Middleburg, 540-687-5555 Foxcroft’s new $10 million dormitory, Stuart Hall, measures 26,000 square feet and accommodates 50 students. It is the school’s first LEED-certified green building and features geothermic walls. During the one-year construction project, students learned about green architecture through site visits. Stuart Hall is the third part of a five-part campus master plan, which includes a new maintenance facility (2008) and an expanded athletic and student center (2010).

The Steward School Richmond, 804-740-3394 Featured on Richmond’s PBS WCVE Science Matters, the new Bryan Innovation Lab at Steward is billed as a “21st-century problem-solving environment.” The facility, which opened in April, merges indoor and outdoor learning environments, with an indoor and outdoor kitchen as well as several gardens. Moveable interior walls double as white boards. Exposed energy systems show students a working model of environmental efficiency.

Thomas Jefferson High School for Science and Technology

Virginia Episcopal School Lynchburg, 434-385-3600 A $12 million campus renovation project, Vision 2016, broke ground in June, and will include a renovated library and dining hall plus a new fine arts center. Above the expanded dining room, the library will include three group study rooms, one global studies room, separate designated quiet study space, a coffee bar and a reading porch. The old gym now houses a 350-seat theater and academic annex for studies in instrumental, ceramic and artistic studies of other media.

Woodberry Forest School

Alexandria, 703-750-8300

Woodberry Forest, 540-672-3900

Thomas Jefferson broke ground this spring on a $90 million expansion. The project will increase the square footage of the school’s facilities by 50 percent to almost 400,000 square feet to relieve recent overcrowding issues. A new, two-story research wing will serve as home to the school’s state-of-the art laboratory and science equipment. This extensive overhaul, which also includes a greenhouse, outdoor classrooms, and common spaces, is slated for a January 2016 completion.

The 44,000-square-foot Manning Family Science Building opened in January 2013, features Woodberry’s traditional red brick and columns, but with the addition of more modern glass. Manning hosts an amphitheater, classrooms, laboratories, common study spaces, and a rooftop observatory. The project cost $17.5 million, including an endowment equal to 25 percent of the building’s overall cost to assist with its maintenance over time.

Bridgewater College took top honors at Recyclemania 2013 for its collection of corrugated cardboard. Bridgewater also placed fifth for its bottles and cans collection and seventh for paper collection.

Governor’s School for the Arts Norfolk, 757-451-4711 In celebration of the school’s 25th anniversary, the Governor’s School for the Arts is consolidating its programs in downtown Norfolk’s 100-year old Monroe building. Previously, the school’s programs were located in various buildings throughout the Norfolk area, hampering interdisciplinary collaboration. Each floor of the $9.6 million building will house a different artistic discipline and feature controlled acoustics to prevent rehearsals from interfering with instruction.

Hampton Roads Academy Newport News, 757-884-9100 A $6 million, 19,200-square-foot academic wing, unveiled in August, includes science labs, 13 classrooms, a student commons, a dining facility, a kitchen, a special events space, a new videoconference room and a Mac lab. All classrooms are equipped with interactive projection systems and podcasting equipment. The project is part of phase one of Hampton Roads Academy’s “Setting Our Course” capital campaign.

Norfolk Collegiate School Norfolk, 757-480-2885 March 1 of this year marked the opening of Norfolk Collegiate’s Meredith Center for the Arts. The centerpiece of the 26,000-square-foot-facility is a 425-seat theater for school plays and community events. Also included in the $8.5 million building are four classrooms, a chorus room, two seminar rooms, two art galleries and a two-story theater lobby. o cto b e r 2 0 1 3



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DON’T DO ORDINARY. Because at no other college in the nation will you pursue: Strength of Character, Perseverance, Leadership, Discipline, Integrity, Service, Honor, and Knowledge quite like you will at

Virginia Military Institute.

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top high schools & colleges 2013 Athletics COLLEGES

Averett University Danville, 434-791-5600 Averett’s dressage team placed 11th at the Intercollegiate Dressage Association Nationals in 2013. In 2011, the IDA named Averett’s Ginger Henderson the Coach of the Year. Henderson emphasizes core improvement through yoga and Pilates. The university’s facilities include two barns and an indoor arena, all on 100 acres. However, the team has outgrown these facilities and plans to relocate in two to three years.

Eastern Mennonite University Harrisonburg, 540-432-4000 According to the U.S. Track & Field and Cross Country Coaches Association, EMU’s women’s cross country team had the highest GPA in the country at the Division III level for the 2012 season. The 16 runners on the team averaged a 3.76 GPA and were one of 197 Division III women’s cross country teams recognized as All-Academic.

James Madison University Harrisonburg, 540-568-6211 Both the men’s and women’s basketball teams saw postseason play in 2013. The men’s team won the CAA conference championship for the first time in 19 years, defeating Northeastern in the title game in Richmond. The Dukes advanced to their first NCAA tournament since 1994, beating Long Island University-Brooklyn in one of the “First Four” play-in games. The women’s team, meanwhile, followed up its runner-up finish in last season’s WNIT with an Elite Eight appearance this season.

Marymount University Arlington, 703-922-5600 The Saints have established the first varsity triathlon team in the U.S. The team, coached by M. Zane Castro, who helped establish Ecuador’s national triathlon program, will compete in the USA Triathlon’s college club regional system. The school has also added baseball and men’s volleyball to its offerings.

Old Dominion University

Virginia Commonwealth University

Norfolk, 757-683-3000

Richmond, 804-828-0100

Competing in the Intercollegiate Sailing Association, Old Dominion has won 15 national championships and was ranked fifth in Sailing World magazine’s most recent national rankings. The school also changed conference affiliations this year, joining Conference USA, where most of their sports teams (except field hockey, wrestling and women’s lacrosse) will compete. The Monarchs football team will be an FCS independent this season, but will join the CUSA in 2014.

VCU’s men’s basketball has become an NCAA tournament regular since Coach Shaka Smart took over the Rams in 2009. They will be playing in the Atlantic 10 in 2014. Smart’s team is well-known for a defensive technique called “havoc.” In March 2013, the team was ranked #25 in the nation.

Sweet Briar College Sweet Briar, 434-381-6100 Sweet Briar College has one of the largest college equestrian arenas in the nation—the 36,000-square-foot Robin S. Cramer Hall. Its equestrian team was crowned 2013 American National Riding Commission champion in the novice division, and took second place in the national division. Students are welcome to pursue an equine studies certificate in addition to their major requirements.

Virginia Intermont College Bristol, 276-466-7867 VI's equestrian team has won 16 national championships. Its riding center features 120 acres of riding space, including two indoor arenas and one outdoor arena, 65 college-owned horses, plus 20 stall barns for students’ horses. Longtime associate professor and coach Lisa Moosmueller-Terry (VI ’92) took over as head riding coach and director of the Equestrian Center last July.

Virginia Polytechnic Institute and State University Blacksburg, 540-231-6000

University of Richmond Richmond, 804-289-8000 The UR women’s swimming team captured its third consecutive Atlantic 10 conference championship last season. It is also the Spiders’ 11th conference title in the past 12 seasons. Over the course of the A-10 meet, the female swimming Spiders broke conference records in the 100-meter butterfly and the 200-meter freestyle.

Since joining the ACC in 2004, VT’s football team has earned four conference titles and won at least 10 games in eight consecutive seasons each. The Hokies also host a literacy program called Herma’s Readers, founded by Coach Frank Beamer in 2008. Herma’s Readers has donated over $100,000 to First Book, for over 50,000 books.

Virginia Military Institute lexington, 540-464-7230

University of Virginia Charlottesville, 434-924-0311 The University of Virginia men’s and women’s swimming teams have established a dynasty in the ACC. Both teams won the past six ACC championships under recently retired head coach Mark Bernardino, who led the Cavaliers to 27 swimming titles (16 men’s, 11 women’s) during his tenure. Women’s rowing has won 13 of 14 ACC titles since the conference first sponsored the sport in 2000. Men’s tennis also won its first NCAA national championship in 2013, defeating UCLA.

VMI is the only college in the state with a water polo team. Entering its third year of competition, the team has played schools like Villanova and Notre Dame College in Ohio and earned its first MAAC win in 2012. Coach Anna Phelps, a graduate of Scripps College in California, was inducted into her alma mater's Hall of Fame for water polo in 2011.

A Man of Letters

UR president in national spotlight … again.

photo by getty images

by joan tupponce University of Richmond President Edward L. Ayers says he was “humbled” to receive the 2012 National Humanities Medal from President Barack Obama in a ceremony at the White House July 10. The medal honors Ayers’ commitment to making American history accessible to people everywhere through digital projects such as the university’s Digital Scholarship Lab, which is developing a digital atlas of American history. “My goal is always the same, regardless of the medium: To include many voices, from the past and in the present, in every conversation,” Ayers says. “It’s exciting and gratifying to bridge the past, present and future, and that’s what we’re trying to do at the Digital Scholarship Lab.” Ayers, who is co-host of the nationally syndicated public radio program BackStory with The American History Guys, has authored four books and edited seven. In 1993, his book The Promise of the New South: Life after Reconstruction was a Pulitzer Prize finalist.,

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TOP 50 PUblic research UNiversity

Make it real. At VCU, we do more than prepare you for the real world. Step into our thriving urban culture where you can turn your talents, ideas and discoveries into true difference-makers. It’s education that delivers. Start your experience at



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top high schools & colleges 2013 Athletics continued

Bishop Denis J. O’Connell School

Christchurch School


Arlington, 703-237-1400

Christchurch, 804-758-2306

Benedictine College Preparatory

Dating back to 1993, the Bishop O’Connell softball team has captured 18 of 21 VISAA Division I state championships. During that span, the Knights have had two separate streaks of eight straight titles, one from 1994-2001 and another from 2003-2010. A new streak is underway, as Bishop O’Connell has claimed the two state title in 2012 and 2013. USA Today ranked the O’Connell Knights #5 in the country this past season.

Located on the Rappahannock River, Christchurch houses a sailing center with two fleets of 420s, including eight for the Learn-to-Sail program, 18 for the varsity sailing team, and two zodiac chase boats for practice. “Mistake Mondays” push the team to focus solely on refinining its technique. Christchurch has finished 17th at the May 2013 Interscholastic Sailing Association’s national competition.

Richmond, 804-708-9500 Benedictine’s legacy as the established powerhouse of the Virginia Independent Schools Athletic Association men’s basketball league continues. Over the past seven years, the Cadets have won four VISAA Division I State Championships. Along the way, many Cadet players have gone on to play in college and the pros, most notably Ed Davis, who plays for the NBA’s Memphis Grizzlies.

The Covenant School Charlottesville, 434-220-7329 This spring, the Covenant School’s boys tennis team won the VISAA Division II state title for the sixth consecutive year. In fact, the Eagles are the only team to ever win the boys tennis title at the Division II level since it was first awarded in 2008. Leading the way for Covenant this season was Head Coach Patrick Kearns, who was named VISAA Division II Coach of the Year in his first season at the helm at Covenant.

Eastern Mennonite School Harrisonburg, 540-236-6000 In 2013, the Flames girls soccer team broke through for its first ever VISAA Division II state title. Led by Head Coach Jason Capps, the Flames were declared champions after defeating their opponents by a score of 1-0. The boys soccer team has previously won VISAA state titles in 2007 (Division I) and 2011 (Division II).

Fairfax County Public Schools Falls Church, 571-423-1200

Kasi Quinn and Kyle King at Springer Mountain in Georgia.

Oakton High School in Vienna won the VHSL AAA Wells Fargo Cup for Athletics for the first time in 2012-2013 due to strong winter and spring seasons, highlighted by a AAA title in girls swimming and state semifinal appearances in boys soccer, girls tennis and baseball. But Oakton is not the only standout school in Fairfax County Public Schools—earlier this year, Herndon High School’s step team won the Youth Step USA National Championship for the second time in three years.

Get Elevated Students hike the Appalachian Trail with Emory & Henry program. by joe tennis Jason Hibbitts hiked over 2,000 miles in 2006, from Mount Katahdin in Maine to Springer Mountain in Georgia, completing not only the entire Appalachian Trail but also earning 12 hours of college credit as the first student in Emory & Henry College’s Semester-A-Trail program. The unique program was “initially created for the most practical of reasons,” says Jim Harrison, who oversees outdoor programs at the small liberal arts college in Emory. “I had a student who wanted to thru-hike the entire Appalachian Trail, but he couldn’t take a semester off because he was on the G.I. Bill.” That student was Hibbitts, who now lives just over the border in Bristol, Tennessee, and grew up in nearby Honaker. Hibbitts, 30, served four years in the U.S. Air Force. “I felt like I had some PTSD, and I really just wanted to have some time to clear my head,” he says. Post-hike, Hibbitts returned to campus to complete three independent study programs. In creative non-fiction, he wrote about survival in the wilderness. For physical education, he prepared a presentation on how many miles he walked each day and how many calories he consumed and burned. He also used images on a digital camera to compile a project of nature photography. “The Semester-A-Trail isn’t getting college credit for hiking,” Harrison explains. “The student completes at least three independent studies that are organically designed to fit the experience.” For example. Kasi Quinn, 22, developed a study of her changing physiology as she recorded her heart rate while on the trail. Semester-A-Trail officially joined the course catalog of the Methodist-affiliated college in 2010. The program may be new, but it’s no small task. “It’s a big, big journey,” says Harrison.

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Hampton Roads Academy Newport News, 757-884-9100 This year, the Navigators swept the VISAA Division II state team titles in swimming and diving for both boys and girls. Standout performers in the state meet included Peyton Baldwin, runner-up in the girls 200-meter freestyle, and Jamie Eisner, who wound up third in girls diving. For his teams’ achievements, Head Coach Jeff Scott was selected to be Boys Coach and Girls Co-Coach of the Year for VISAA Division II.

Henrico County Public Schools Henrico, 804-652-3600 Three Henrico County high school teams captured 20122013 VHSL AAA state titles: Mills Godwin for boys golf, Henrico High boys basketball and Deep Run girls soccer. The district’s athletic accomplishments also include three consecutive AAA state titles from 2010 to 2012 for Deep Run boys tennis, and eight state titles since 2001 for Mills Godwin girls tennis.

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top high schools & colleges 2013 Montgomery County Public Schools Christiansburg, 540-382-5100 Blacksburg High School won the VHSL AA Wells Fargo Cup for Athletics for the seventh time since 1990 this year. The main contributors to Blacksburg’s victory were four AA state championship teams: boys soccer, boys indoor track and a sweep of the cross country championships for boys and girls. Christiansburg High School’s wrestling team, meanwhile, has won the VHSL AA title for the past 11 years.

Norfolk Collegiate School Norfolk, 757-480-2885 The Norfolk Collegiate varsity coed team has won five Virginia State Championships and two Mid-Atlantic Sailing Association Championships in the past three years, also winning the Atlantic Coast Championship for the first time in 2009 and again in 2011. They placed third in the Virginia Interscholastic Sailing Championships and second in the Tidewater Conference of Independent Schools Championships in 2012.

North Cross School Roanoke, 540-989-6641 In addition to winning VISAA Division II state championships in 2007 and 2012, MaxPreps and the Army National Guard ranked the boys soccer team as one of the top high school teams in the country. After their 2012 state title, the Raiders were ranked 13th nationally by MaxPreps and were one of just 10 schools in the U.S. to be presented with a trophy by members of the National Guard.

Oak Hill Academy Mouth of Wilson, 276-579-2619 The Warriors are consistently ranked among the best in the country. USA Today has ranked them #1 in the past, most recently in 2011-12. Oak Hill is also known for producing numerous great players, including current NBA stars Rajon Rondo, Brandon Jennings and Josh Smith.

Paul VI High School Fairfax, 703-352-0925 It’s safe to say that Paul VI has established itself as a dynasty in its division for girls basketball. Earlier this year, the Panthers locked up their seventh straight VISAA state championship. The national media has taken notice of Paul VI’s run of success. Their girls basketball team was ranked sixth in the nation by USA Today.

Rockingham County Public Schools Harrisonburg, 540-564-3200 Girls basketball was the standout sport among Rockingham County’s four high schools last year, as two of them went on to win VHSL state championships. Spotswood High School came out on top in Division 3 of the AA level, beating Brunswick County High 66 to 51. East Rockingham, meanwhile, laid claim to the title in Division 1 of the A level for the second year in a row, outlasting Altavista Combined School 35 to 31.

Eddie Lopez and Felipe Viana of the UVA men’s polo team. UVA’s men’s and women’s polo teams were both national collegiate champions in 2013.

St. Catherine’s School

Tandem Friends School

Richmond, 804-288-2804

Charlottesville, 434-296-1303

Over the past decade, the all-girls school has put together an impressive collection of state titles in indoor and outdoor track. Indoors, the Saints have won the VISAA Division I state championship in 2007 as well as the past three years. They were outdoor state champions from 2002-2006 and 20102012. Also, the soccer team broke through for its first ever VISAA Division I state championship this year and were ranked sixth in the nation by MaxPreps.

The Tandem Friends girls soccer team won three straight VISAA Division 2 State Championships from 2010-2012. The school’s strict “no-cut” athletic policy allows any student who wants to join the team to play, regardless of ability. In recent years, one student joined the team not knowing how to properly kick a ball, while another became the soccer player with the second most playing time on William & Mary’s team as a freshman.

St. Christopher’s School

Trinity Episcopal School

Richmond, 804-282-3185

Richmond, 804-272-5864

This May, the Saints broke through for their first-ever VISAA Division I state championship in baseball. The wrestling team is familiar with being state champions. The Saints wrestling team won the VISAA title 11 years in a row from 2002 to 2012. Head Coach John Gordon has been recognized nationally for this run of success, most notably being named Wrestling USA magazine’s National Coach of the year in 2011.

Led by head coach and Trinity alumnus Marcus Jones, the boys cross country team has won the past three VISAA Division I state championships (2010-2012). The Titans have also sported the past two individual state champions in Guy Shelby and Reider Strehler, who completed the five-kilometer race in 16:33 and 16:34 respectively. The girls cross country team is also among the best in Virginia, placing third in the 2012 VISAA state championship.

St. Stephen’s & St. Agnes School Alexandria, 703-751-2700 In VISAA play, St. Stephen’s and St. Agnes have won numerous VISAA Division state titles in both boys and girls lacrosse. Boys lacrosse laid claim to three of the past four Division I state championships while the girls lacrosse team has captured the past seven state championships. Last season, the Saints girls lacrosse team was ranked third in the country by Nike and Lacrosse Magazine, while the boys finished the season ranked 18th.

virginia living



Virginia Beach City Public Schools Virginia Beach, 757-263-1000 Kellam High School’s gymnastics team, which competes in VHSL AAA level competition, won the state title in 2006, 2010 and 2013. Kellam’s girls volleyball team has won the past three AAA state titles. Other standouts include the Princess Anne’s girls basketball team, with five straight AAA state championship game appearances and two wins, and the First Colonial and Frank Cox high schools’ field hockey teams, which between them have won six of the past seven AAA state titles.

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D eparture Travels with Bittman A guide to Paris, by the bistro. B Y d e a n k i n g | i l l u s t r at i o n by c h r i s g a l l


makers, something you just won’t find anywhere else. We bought a bottle of Aspasie, a rich honeyed wine, tasting of ginger and cooked fruit. Our culinary adventure was off to a fine start, and we hadn’t even passed a mealtime yet. However, Semilla burst the Bittman bubble. The trendy spot’s veal tartare was too chewy. The unusual vegetables that Bittman had raved about were nowhere to be found. My bonito, which was evidently in season, would be just the third best of our visit. But all was not lost, thanks to a wonderful carafe of 2001 Mont-Olivet Châteauneuf-du-Pape, which went superbly with three ripe cheeses (Cantal, Camembert and a bleu) before a dessert of cherry clafoutis and pistachio ice cream. We found two of the neo-bistros closed on Sunday but stumbled on a neighborhood café, Chez Paul, in the 4th, where my duet of rascasse and bonito was worthy to take on the Bittman contenders. The next day we called to book at Le Pantruche, in the 9th, but they could only offer us a table next to the WC, which we declined. In the three minutes it took us to reconsider, the table was gone. We decided to take our chances and kept walking. We got lucky again and smiled at each other as one of the waiters led us to a nice table for two—with no WC in sight. My appetizer of skate (to me, the most underrated seafood), tasting of backfin crabmeat but more tender, and the veal au jus, the daily special, were worth the journey. A Grand Marnier soufflé with salted caramel sauce capped Bittman’s redemption. We wanted to try one more of his selections, Le Sergent Recruteur, on the Île St.-Louis, on our last day. The four-course chef’s bar menu, which we ate at a marble-topped wine counter near the outdoor ice cream window, started off with a raw amberjack with cassis berries, horseradish and arugula, and finished with peaches roasted in thyme served with elderflower ice cream and raw almond slivers. Although Bittman praised everything but the food, we found the whole experience to be on par with Le Pantruche. The bistros, brasseries and cafés were all fine, but we had also reserved an evening for Lapérouse, a classic restaurant on the Quai des Grands Augustins, where with the yellowing column, we would explore sensual pleasures Our culinary 27 years earlier we had celebrated my admission into graduate of a different sort. adventure was writing school. That’s a long time for a restaurant to stay in busiStaying at the Relais Christine in the 6th arrondissement, just but a drop in the bucket for this one, which was founded down the quay from the École and near the Pont Neuf, which the off to a fine ness in 1766. We opted for the chef’s tasting menu with wines paired artist Christo wrapped during our earlier time here, we were well situated for Bittman’s picks, all oriented by their walking distance start, and we with each of the five courses. After several amuse-bouches, we ate foie gras, roasted octopus, lamb rubbed in cumin, cheese and from nearby Notre-Dame. hadn’t even strawberry soup. This grand old dame of restaurants showed an When we arrived, we asked the concierge to book us a table at to detail that no bistro is geared to match. Semilla, one of Bittman’s main picks. He raised his eyebrows and passed a attention In between the meals, we ran, of course. Our jaunts took us to said we’d be very lucky to get in. Turns out we were. They had a table at 8 p.m. We then scooted off around the corner for tea at mealtime yet. the Tuilleries, Luxembourg Gardens and the Promenade Plantée, the model for New York City’s High Line. The most scenic Mariage Frères. Jess ordered the afternoon tea, and as it was 5 of all was along the Left Bank of the Seine, up from the Pont Neuf, along a o’clock and I am a light sleeper, I ordered the 5 o’clock tea. It was light and stretch that has been reclaimed from auto traffic and is being transformed fragrant and washed down a madeleine and a piece of pistachio cake very into a revved-up pedestrian avenue complete with bars, restaurants and well. Still, to prevent any deleterious affects on my sleep, I suggested we walkup hotel rooms in designer pods. New life after all these years. ❉ visit the Champagne shop across the street devoted to boutique Champagne

y wife jessica and i brought mark bittman

with us on our 25th wedding anniversary trip to Paris. In case you don’t know Bittman, he is The New York Times food critic who also makes three-minute cooking videos you can watch online. His unruffled calm and optimism even once got me—a non-recipe-follower—to attempt coffee-braised short ribs. My version could have lit up the Eastern Seaboard for a week. But it was okay. Bittman would have smiled and continued dining, like I did. It doesn’t always have to be perfect. Okay, so we didn’t bring Bittman along in body. But we did have him with us in a bit more than spirit. Last April, he wrote a column on neo-bistros in Paris. He described four in some detail and listed three runners-up. Jessica and I decided we would have a culinary theme on our five-day return to Paris, where she had once spent a year as a graduate student in painting at the École des Beaux Arts and I had courted her while working elsewhere variously as a farmhand, a room service waiter and a tie salesman. We wouldn’t revisit the Louvre or the Rodin Museum or even l’Orangerie, where Monet’s water lilies had engulfed and dazzled us. Armed

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Behind every warrior

stands a loyal network of supporters

for naval speCial warfare, it’s the navy SEaL Foundation on any given day, throughout the world, members of the naval special warfare community put their lives on the line to defend our freedom. knowing there is an organization at home exclusively dedicated to supporting them and their families is an invaluable asset for u.s. navy seals, special warfare Combatant-craft Crewmen and naval special warfare support personnel. the navy seal foundation’s mission is to provide immediate and ongoing support to the naval special warfare community. our work focuses on three key areas: family support services including tragedy assistance and morale-building activities; educational programs that encourage lifelong learning; and preserving the legacy of our veterans as well as those who made the ultimate sacrifice.

your support Can make a differenCe visit to learn about online donations, planned giving, stock donations, employer matching gift programs and other ways to help support the naval special warfare community. Consider recognizing the naval special warfare community through the navy seal foundation text-to-give opportunity. to donate $10 now, text SEaL to 90999. a one-time $10 charge will be added to your wireless bill.

navy seal foundation is a 501 (c)(3) non-profit organization. the foundation has received a four-star rating from Charity navigator and is certified as a “Best in america” merica” charity by independent ndependent Charities of america. merica. tax ax id # 31-1728910 / C CfC C #11454

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Virginia Living–October 2013  

The magazine for Virginia lifestyles and culture. This issue features RdV Vineyards & VA Wine and a special section on Top Schools & College...

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