C-VILLE Weekly | June 5 - June 11, 2024

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JUNE 5 –11, 2024 CHARLOTTESVILLE’S NEWS AND ARTS WEEKLY C-VILLE.COM FREE TRISTAN WILLIAMS Summer soccer league Charlottesville Blues off to a strong start Why our elected representatives can't quit their day jobs PAGE 10 NPR science writer Nell Greenfieldboyce seeks out the strange PAGE 29
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Summer Blues

Charlottesville’s new football club finds a home at St. Anne’sBelfield—and dominates away.


10 Local legislators discuss their second jobs

11 We can—and should— utilize tech to educate voters and repair our democracy.

13 Real Estate Weekly: UVA’s upcoming projects.


29 Pages: Science reporter Nell Greenfieldboyce investigates life’s mundanities.

31 Galleries: What’s on view this month. 32 Sudoku


Free Will Astrology

Podcasters Bree Luck and Mendy St. Ours in the HotSeat.

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V.36, No. 23
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Hello, Charlottesville. Thank you for reading C-VILLE Weekly. I’d like to turn your attention, just for a moment, away from the newspaper and instead to Best of C-VILLE, our annual magazine that asks readers to choose their favorite people, places, and things in Charlottesville. Voting began over the weekend and I encourage you to visit vote.c-ville.com to cast your ballot. When the magazine publishes in August, it will include not only your top choices, but also a collection of stories from the C-VILLE editorial staff revealing our own ideas about what’s the best of C’ville.

I’ll let you in on a little secret: Included in those writeups is one about Charlottesville Blues, the city’s newly launched football club that, so far, is proving a formidable foe in the United Soccer League. As you’ll read in this week’s cover story, the men’s team trounced Lionsbridge at their first away game in mid-May, ending a winning streak the Virginia Beach team had held since 2019. Check out Julia Stumbaugh’s story on page 20, and root! root! root! for the home team.

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SEPT 28-OCT 26 FEB 14-MAR 2 MAR 21-APRIL 12 NOV 22-DEC 15 SEPT 27-OCT 27 MAY 16-JUNE 1 SEASON SUBSCRIPTIONS START AT $110 Live Arts Theater | 123 E. Water St | 434.977.4177 | livearts.org
“I have a visceral reaction against, against the attacks on those statues. There were heroes in

the Confederacy

who didn’t have slaves and, you know, I just, I just have a visceral reaction against destroying history. I don’t like it. I think we should celebrate who we are.” —Independent presidential candidate Robert F. Kennedy Jr. on “Timcast IRL,” a podcast from far-right activist Tim Pool


It’s a start

A $9 million settlement between the University of Virginia and the families of Devin Chandler, Lavel Davis Jr., and D’Sean Perry— the three students who were killed in a shooting on Grounds on November 13, 2022—was approved on Friday, May 31, by a judge in Albemarle County Circuit Court. The settlement grants $2 million to each of the families and $3 million between Mike Hollins and Marlee Morgan, two students who were injured in the shooting.

Saying goodbye

Beloved local restaurateur Mel Walker passed away on Tuesday, May 28. His eponymous West Main Street restaurant was one of the oldest Black-owned businesses in the city, having opened in 1984. Walker was a fixture in the community, born in the Vinegar Hill neighborhood and earning his restaurant chops in a variety of local kitchens. His absence leaves the future of Mel’s Cafe hanging in the balance. Visit gofundme. com/f/help-keep-mels-cafe-open to donate to the family’s fundraiser.

Standing O

The second round of grants for the National Endowment for the Arts’ 2024 fiscal year included a $20,000 award to Live Arts, the first for the local theater in its 33-year history. According to a press release, the grant will “advance the theater’s multi-year effort to diversify the stories on its stage” by supporting its third annual WATERWORKS festival.

In total, 20 grants were awarded to organizations in Virginia, four of which were in Charlottesville.

Delayed vote

Yearning for earnings PAGE 10

The Charlottesville School Board voted on Thursday, May 30, to delay a decision on reinstating School Resource Officers in city schools until 2025. Now referred to as “Youth Resource Officers,” SROs (YROs) have not served in Charlottesville schools since they were replaced with Care and Safety Assistants in 2020.

Several teachers, students, parents, and community members appeared at the Charlottesville School Board meeting in opposition to these cops returning to schools, including members of the Charlottesville Education Association, the union representing the faculty and staff of Charlottesville City Schools. It was the

About face

Thanks to a petition signed by more than 1,000 community members, Piedmont Community College nursing student Mustafa Abdelhamid will continue his studies at UVA Medical Center.

The nursing student’s externship was rescinded following an

Association’s Representative Assembly that recently voted unanimously to send a resolution opposing the return of YROs to the school board.

Shannon Gillikin, president of CEA, read the resolution at the meeting. “[The resolution] opposes the employment of police officers in [Charlottesville] schools,” arguing that their presence would not promote safety, instead citing “restorative justice and community outreach programs” as alternative ways to use the money that would be spent on employing YROs.

Other speakers at the meeting advocated for similar causes. Christine Es-

arrest at the UVA encampment earlier this month, but on Wednesday, May 29, Police Chief Tim Longo modified his No Trespassing Order (NTO) to allow Abdelhamid back on Grounds.

The decision was made after the University was met

posito, a gifted program specialist at Walker Upper Elementary School, questioned how the school board has the funds to employ officers while so many staff positions go unfunded. According to the Charlottesville Police Department, the addition of YROs would cost nearly $600,000 for the first year. Esposito expressed that this is not a conversation to be had “until we can fund our desperately needed instructional positions.”

Many pleaded for transparency from the school board in making this decision, given the rigorous process to remove YROs in the first place.

with action by community organizers.

The UVA Chapter of the American Association of University Professors issued a petition following the University’s denial to reconsider their

decision to ban Mustafa from University property.

The petition describes the decision as “prejudicial to his minority status” and raises concern for the supposed infringement on the student’s rights.

9 June 5 –11, 2024 c-ville.com cville.weekly @cvilleweekly cville_weekly
JOHN ROBINSON Mel Walker JOHN ROBINSON The decision to reinstate resource officers in city public schools has been put off until 2025, as decided by the Charlottesville School Board.

Stay awhile

Office politics

Most Charlottesville legislators have second jobs

Few people get into politics for the salaries, but for local and state representatives this rings especially true. Whether they’re on city council, serving in the House of Delegates, or a longtime member of the state Senate, most of Charlottesville’s legislators have a second job.

To find out more about compensation for elected officials, C-VILLE asked local legislators for their comments via email. Across the board, every member of council and state representative who responded is either working or has recently held a job outside of their elected position.

On city council, pay starts at $18,000 a year, with the mayor’s salary slightly higher at $20,000.

When he’s not attending meetings as the mayor of Charlottesville, Juandiego Wade works for Albemarle County as a Career Center Coordinator. Other councilors are also locally employed, with Natalie Oschrin working for Pippin Hill Farm & Vineyard, Brian Pinkston in facilities management at the University of Virginia, and Lloyd Snook serving as a lawyer at his own firm.

“I manage both jobs by carrying three phones everywhere I go: personal, UVA, City,” said Pinkston. “I have a degree of flexibility at my day job, which is very helpful. That said, I end up using several weeks of leave every year so that I can attend official City meetings.”

Other councilors shared their creative time-management skills for juggling multiple jobs. Oschrin splits her day, limiting her time for council-related responsibilities to before and after the work day. Still, it’s not perfect.

“I do miss out on some daytime activities, including certain boards and commissions, ceremonies, and conferences,” she said.

Private practice lawyer and city councilor Lloyd Snook makes it all fit by working late hours. “I manage by not sleeping much; I tend to go back to the office and work until 2am or later,” he shared.

In the state legislature, salaries aren’t any higher; delegates receive a base pay of $17,640 annually, with state senators earning $18,000.

Both Del. Katrina Callsen and state Sen. Creigh Deeds were in the local law scene until this April. While Deeds continues to practice, Callsen stepped down from her role as Charlottesville’s Deputy City Attorney to spend more time with family.

“At this time, I can say, happily of course, that my only other job is being a mom,” said Callsen.

While Callsen is able to hold only her elected office, she acknowledges the current salary caps are prohibitive for others. “By deliberately keeping the pay for elected officials low, we are locking out folks like single working mothers or civil servants who would otherwise make fantastic addi-

tions to the table but can’t because they simply can’t afford to serve,” she said.

“My work as a legislator makes me a better lawyer, and my work as a lawyer makes me a better legislator,” said Deeds about his jobs. “I have always thought that compensation was on the low end of fair.”

According to income guidelines for Housing and Urban Development programming in 2022, current salaries for local legislators qualify as “extremely low income.” Charlottesville’s area median income as of 2024 is $124,200 for a family of four.

Discussions of compensation for elected officials in Virginia have been a point of contention for years, with a bill introduced by Callsen this year that would raise salary caps for city councils statewide. Under House Bill 456, Charlottesville’s salary caps could increase to $37,000 annually for the mayor and $34,000 for other councilors.

Among proponents of the current compensation rates for local legislators, one justification for the pay is that both Charlottesville City Councilors and state legislators are considered part-time roles, despite the demands of the position.

“It is sometimes argued that raising pay for City Councilors will make it possible for more different kinds of people to serve; I’m not sure that that is true,” said Snook.

Other local leaders acknowledged both the positives and negatives of holding multiple roles.

“I think my roles definitely influence one another,” Wade said. “I constantly have a strong pulse on what is going on in the community.”

“Serving on Council is an honor and a privilege; it’s not the sort of thing you would ever do ‘just’ for financial reasons. That said, it is incredibly time-intensive,” said Pinkston. “More than that, you end up ‘carrying’ things for the City and its residents around with you—their concerns, struggles, hopes, fears, and so on—pretty much all the time. So while it’s an honor to do these things, it would be lovely to have a bit more stipend to go along with it.”

At the state level, compensation for legislators remains comparatively low. In contrast to other states whose legislative positions carry similar time commitments—which have an average compensation of $41,110 annually, according to Ballotpedia—Virginia’s compensation for its delegates and state senators is strikingly little.

Compared to the salaries of legislators, gubernatorial compensation averages at a much higher rate. Gov. Youngkin’s salary, for example, is $175,000 per year—even higher than the average of $148,939.

10 June 5 –11, 2024 c-ville.com cville.weekly @cvilleweekly cville_weekly NEWS
Del. Katrina Callsen introduced a bill this year that would raise annual salary caps for city councils statewide up to $37,000 for the mayor and $34,000 for councilors.
Inside. Outside. Home. SPRING 2024 STYLE IN THE CITY A small build in Belmont gets a serious design upgrade for this part-time local Out with some of the old (and in with some new) for this Ednam kitchen MORE LAPS A pool with a view in Whitehall FOR GOOD BOYS Wag's cool new vet office DO LOOK DOWN Eye-catching rugs in Keswick Spring 2024 issue on stands now


Plugging in

Why civic tech is critical for democracy

You stare at the names on the ballot, none of which you recognize, and appeal to a friend: “Just tell me who to vote for.”

If you’ve ever felt uninformed in local elections, you’re not alone. One could point to any number of theories for this lack of information: social media distractions, internet misinformation (and disinformation), breakdowns of trust in democratic institutions. In 2024, election information is scattered, disorganized, and sometimes downright toxic. Compared to venturebacked technology on your smartphone, election information is inaccessible and uninteresting. But the same technology that monetizes our collected attention could instead be used to build civic attention—a collective focus on our rights and duties as citizens.

Rapid advancements in information technologies have changed the media and how we access information. Though it began as potential for a better informationsharing medium, the internet has devolved into a clickbaity, sharing-obsessed, often toxic attention economy. Under the guise of saving the world, the biggest tech companies design apps to capture attention, harvest data, and sell advertising.

“There is a tech gap that has been growing over the past 20 years,” says Jonathan Kropko, a UVA data science professor who leads Code for Charlottesville. “The gap between what a well-financed large organization can do with technology and what a cash-strapped, small organization can do with technology. Right now that gap is bigger than ever.”

While the tech gap grows, there are glimmers of hope. Nonprofit civic tech organizations like Code for America aim to “transform government systems.” Since the organization’s inception in 2009, civic technology has changed government services for the better—how veterans access their benefits, how criminal records are processed, and how we do our taxes. Take, for example, the U.S. Digital Service. Established in 2014, the technology unit (housed in the Executive Office of the President), focuses on improving federal websites, making them simpler and more accessible. When it comes to election information, however, the government is not going to solve the problem—and both sides know it. Three retiring members of Congress who spoke to the New York Times in late April—

Larry Bucshon (R—Ind.), Anna Eshoo (D–Calif.), and Doug Lamborn (R–Colo.)— all responded similarly when asked about our broken government: The American people need to fix it. The subtext? Government can’t/won’t.

If the government won’t fix our politics, civic tech could help. It could make election information accessible, informative, and interesting. This space is ripe for disruption. Every year, millions of Americans search Google for election information. Ballot research is time- and labor-intensive and the current landscape is unnecessarily convoluted, putting an undue burden on American voters.

Election and civic information should be intuitive, engaging, and among the easiest things to find on the internet.

“Data is power in many ways,” says Kropko. “If you have the capacity to collect and organize and utilize massive amounts of data it gives you a lot of power. The only missing piece is the organizational one.”

Accessible information could transform elections, government, and civic engagement. Let’s give Americans the critical information they’re looking for and hand such power to a bipartisan, socially equitable, mission-driven organization whose interest is the public good. With appropriate strategy, funding, and state-of-the-art technology, we can rejuvenate our democracy. If we don’t prioritize civic technology, it will continue to get drowned out by big tech and for-profit inertia.

Toshy Penton is a digital marketer with a passion for politics. His website, Local Candidates, aims to simplify civic engagement with accessible information on Virginia elections and government.

“If you have the capacity to collect and organize and utilize massive amounts of data it gives you a lot of power. The only missing piece is the organizational one.” CODE FOR AMERICA’S JONATHAN KROPKO

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Code for America founder Jonathan Kropko says a tech gap has been growing over the last 20 years.
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Change order

Experience Matters

The University of Virginia has more influence and control over Charlottesville’s future than any other entity in the community. At this moment, UVA has more than a billion projects under construction, according to the packet for this week’s meeting of the Board of Visitors. The agenda of the Buildings and Grounds Committee is a good place to see what might be happening next. Rather than meeting at their usual Thursday afternoon time, the panel will convene Friday morning. This change comes because a “leadership discussion” is scheduled for the full 17-member board on Thursday and will be followed by a closed session.

Since becoming University president in August 2018, Jim Ryan has put a priority on building connections with the greater community. The President’s Council on UVA-Community Partnerships has led to several initiatives, such as a commitment to provide land for between 1,000 and 1,500 affordable units in the community.

Another initiative in the Great and Good Strategic Plan adopted during Ryan’s tenure is to house all second-year students on campus. UVA recently announced plans to build up to 2,000 beds for this purpose on either Emmet Street or Ivy Road, with the first units planned for 2027.

On Friday morning, the Buildings and Grounds panel will get an update on the 2024 major capital plan and will review the plans for a new North Grounds parking garage.

“This is a thousand-space structured parking deck which is going to be located at the northwest corner of Massie Road and Copeley,” says Michael Joy of the UVA Office of the Architect. “It will be adjacent to all of the competition venues and the John Paul Jones Arena.”

Joy says this will allow UVA to eliminate surface parkings for future development.

Some of the apartment buildings at Copeley Hill will be demolished to make way for the parking structure.

New projects to be added to the capital plan include the renovation of an engineering research facility on Observatory Mountain, a project called the Darden Global Innovation Nexus, and expansion of a child care center on Copeley Road. The lattermost project would see capacity grow from 115 children to a total of 285.

Other new initiatives will have a big impact on Charlottesville’s Fifeville neighborhood. Last year, UVA purchased the Oak Lawn estate for $3.5 million, having already purchased several properties a block to the north in 2016. Planning studies are proposed for both.

“The Grove Street planning study will consider program options for these two sites, which are likely to include UVA Health and neighborhood clinics, community uses, and parking in a mixed-use format,” reads a description in the B&G packet.

Written material for the Oak Lawn property hints at a future child care center on the 5.2-acre parcel.

The buildings panel will also approve the location and design guidelines for the new Center of the Arts to be built in the EmmetIvy corridor. This would be the new home for the Fralin and Kluge-Ruhe art museums as well as the music department. There will also be a 1,200-seat auditorium.

“Design is in the early stages and there will be ongoing funding efforts both with the Commonwealth and with philanthropic donors,” says Joy, who is a non-voting member of the city planning commission.

Also on the full Board’s agenda this week is a trip to the new football operations center, which will be named for Molly and Robert Hardie, the co-owners of Keswick Hall who made a large gift to support the Virginia Athletics Master Plan.

June 5 –11, 2024 c-ville.com cville.weekly @cvilleweekly cville_weekly 14 REAL ESTATE WEEKLY
CITY OF CHARLOTTESVILLE UVA’s Building and Grounds meets this week to approve Center of Arts, new parking garage
The Building and Grounds Committee will discuss the new Center of the Arts to be built in the Emmet-Ivy corridor (in yellow), the new home for the Fralin and Kluge-Ruhe art museums.
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being sold below the appraised value. It is 2 parcels located within the Town Activity Center Zoning (mixed use) on a combined total of 4.059 acres, 6 buildings, 1 pavilion, and 1 house, all totaling 35,034 sq ft with ample parking on a corner lot. Contact the listing agent to schedule a showing. The listing agent is related to the seller and must accompany. Parcel #1 is 385 and 389 Waugh Blvd, Orange, VA tax map # 44-111; parcel #2 is 401 Waugh Blvd tax map # 44-113A. The property is being sold in its entirety and will not be divided. Parcel #1 has 6 buildings with a combined square footage of 30,832 plus a 900 SF pavilion, and 3.632 acres. Parcel #2 has a 2,822 gross sq ft residence which includes a full basement, 4 bedrooms, and 3 full baths plus a 480 sq ft detached garage on 0.427 acres. $2,900,000


16 June 511, 2024 c-ville.com facebook.com/cville.weekly Jack Samuels Realty inc. ESTABLISHED 1913 • 138 EAST MAIN STREET, ORANGE, VA
540-672-3233 www.jacksamuels.com • Jacksamuelsrealty@gmail.com
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opportunity in the Town of Orange Donna
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17 June 511, 2024 c-ville.com facebook.com/cville.weekly 189 PILOT MOUNTAIN HOLLOW $1,495,000 FABER, VA STEVE WHITE (434) 242-8355 JIM BONNER (434) 981-4327 2797 PROFFIT RD $925,000 CHARLOTTESVILLE, VA WENDY PEERY (434) 953-2480 2495 KIMBROUGH CIR $639,000 CHARLOTTESVILLE, VA TODD MORGAN (434) 962-8054 1889 GLISSADE LN $685,000 CHARLOTTESVILLE, VA PETER MCFARREN (434) 422-0642 518 MEADE AVE $450,000 CHARLOTTESVILLE, VA DAVE ALLEY (434) 760-0077 SIMONE ALLEY (434) 760-0076 3033 BACON HOLLOW RD $357,500 DYKE, VA COLLEEN MARSHALL (434) 960-6081 29 SMOKEWOOD DR $335,640 PALMYRA, VA SUSAN STEWART (434) 242-3550 8138 S BLUE RIDGE TPK $899,000 MADISON, VA GERRI RUSSELL (434) 531-9581 8 GEORGETOWN GREEN $349,000 CHARLOTTESVILLE, VA JAN SHIFLETT (434) 242-6057 SCAN QR CODE TO VIEW LISTINGS ONLINE CHARLOTTESVILLE 434.951.5155 | ZION CROSSROADS 434.589.2611 | GREENE COUNTY 434.985.2348 PENDING PENDING PENDING



A hidden gem nestled in one of Charlottesville’s most charming historic neighborhoods, Oakhurst Inn is an intimate boutique hotel conveniently located just steps away from the University of Virginia. Experience luxurious accommodations, delectable cuisine, an inviting ambiance, and picturesque surroundings. A place connecting visitors and locals alike.

18 June 511, 2024 c-ville.com facebook.com/cville.weekly
19 June 511, 2024 c-ville.com facebook.com/cville.weekly VOTE FOR YOUR FAVORITE BUSINESSES ON OUR DIGITAL BALLOT: vote.c-ville.com 2024 VOTE FOR US! the Hits All 2023 BEST OF C-VILLE 2023 ENTERTAINMENT HEALTH & FITNESS FOOD & DRINK SHOPPING SERVICES WEDDINGS KIDS FAMILY C-VILLE BEST OF TOMORELOVE170+ of your things—andCharlottesvillefavorite a few of our own 2022 BEST OF C-VILLE 2022 ENTERTAINMENT HEALTH & FITNESS FOOD & DRINK SHOPPING SERVICES WEDDINGS KIDS & FAMILY CITY VIBES LET THE GOOD TIMES ROLL! You’re out there living it up—we have the votes to prove it Blue Moon’s back! ...and we’re over the roof about it What a trill Victory Hall's serving up uncommon opera SHAPING UP Stretch, sweat, repeat: Your picks for getting fit C-VILLE BEST OF ALL NEW!Kids & Family P.123 City Vibes P.137 Your votes are in for 183 of the greatest things in Charlottesville—plus 60 of the C-VILLE staff’s own faves 2021 No limits The gloves are off for comedian Chris Alan Podcast, activist, place of worship: We’ve added new categories! BEST OF C-VILLE 2021 ENTERTAINMENT HEALTH & FITNESS FOOD & DRINK SHOPPING SERVICES WEDDINGS KIDS & FAMILY CITY VIBES FORTHEWIN! FIRST CHAIR Laura Mulligan Thomas on CHS’ rise to orchestral success Right ’round In appreciation of Bodo’s ballyhooed drive-thru 2024 BEST OF C-VILLE VOTING IS OPEN! This year's ballot contains 190categories, which means nearly 200 opportunities to recognize the best people, places, and things in our city, from podcast to pediatrician. Voting ends June 30th!


20 June 5 –11, 2024 c-ville.com cville.weekly @cvilleweekly cville_weekly
Charlottesville Blues FC brings TRISTAN WILLIAMS


pre-professional soccer to town

21 June 5 –11, 2024 c-ville.com cville.weekly @cvilleweekly cville_weekly

Local soccer fans considering making the trip to New York or Los Angeles for the 2026 World Cup or 2028 Olympics needn’t go that far for a fix.

In fact, they’ll only have to travel as far as St. Anne’s-Belfield, where Charlottesville Blues FC is looking to seize on the growing popularity of American soccer by introducing United Soccer League-affiliated amateur men’s and women’s teams to Charlottesville.

“We will never see this level of injection into U.S. soccer history ever again,” co-owner Brian Krow says. “This is an unprecedented five years. That’s what really motivated us. Let’s get in, let’s start to build a fan base, build a community, build the sponsors, because our vision is to go full-time pro.”

The men’s club competes in the USL2, which expanded to a league-record 128 teams for the 2024 season, while the women’s team is taking on the 80-team USLW division.

The Blues’ inaugural season, which began in May and will conclude in July, pits the brand-new Charlottesville team, comprising college-age players and aspiring pros, against well-established pre-professional clubs with a history of sending players to the USL or international professional leagues.

The men’s team took on one of those pre-professional powerhouses on May 26 when they traveled to Newport News to face Lionsbridge FC, a club with 20 professional alumni that went to the USL League Two Championship game last season.

The Blues entered the game as consensus underdogs. Lionsbridge had not lost at home since 2019, marking 41 straight victories on their home field, and Charlottesville had yet to win a match.

But a goal from Princeton midfielder Samuel Vigilante and penalty kick from Mary Washington forward Josh Kirkland, combined with a strong Blues defense that limited Lionsbridge to two shots on goal, allowed Charlottesville to pull off a 2-0 shutout win.

“For us to secure this win at the start of our inaugural season truly sets the tone for what Charlottesville has to offer,” Krow says.

The Lionsbridge upset is the kind of result Krow was hoping for when he joined local co-owner Brian Kuk, as well as fellow co-owners John J. Kuk and Jim Kupec, in purchasing the rights to the teams in August, two years after beginning the process of bringing USL affiliates to Charlottesville.

The introduction involved consulting with other local clubs about how best to fit into the local sports landscape. The Charlottesville Tom Sox of the Valley Baseball League contributed advice about summer league business models and the logistics of hosting players with local families, while University of Virginia soccer provided local attendance analytics.

UVA soccer games are attended by an average of more than 1,800 fans on both

the men’s and women’s sides, a statistic Krow says gave the Blues owners confidence the clubs could fill the 1,500-person stands at STAB.

“This is a family-friendly, community-based sporting event,” Krow says. “It’s going to be a different business model than probably most have seen, but it’s all about the matchday experience. It’s really about a community.”

The Blues logo—which features a Virginia Fox, the color of the Blue Ridge mountains, and a font inspired by the Paramount Theater—accordingly integrated the city.

“It’s all about tying in the community of Charlottesville on that one little crest,” Krow says.

The Blues also stayed local in their leadership search. The clubs hired two Virginia-based coaches in Carolyn Warhaftig, a teacher at Tandem Friends School whose previous coaching roles include an administrative operations role with the UVA women’s soccer team, and Tommy DiNuzzo, head coach of men’s soccer at Hampden-Sydney College since 2017.

Warhaftig and DiNuzzo were tasked with building rosters that both followed league rules, which only allow five players to join from each NCAA program, while featuring players with the drive to succeed in a program the USL describes as “pre-professional.”

“I have an understanding of the USL, and the level and soccer IQ of players playing at this level is tremendous,” Warhaftig says. “So, I knew we were not searching for just any player who wanted to play competitively. These are players who have aspirations to play in the National Women’s Soccer League, to play professionally in the States, or to play internationally at the pro level. It’s not your average player. It’s not just about your skill level and your athleticism anymore, but it’s about your tactical understanding and awareness and how well you can translate that onto the field.”

Luckily for the two coaches, the Blues were able to draw on the UVA soccer program to fill out their summer rosters with precisely that kind of player.

“Charlottesville is such a great location. UVA is absolutely the starting point, because they’re probably the most historic men’s college soccer program in the country,” DiNuzzo says. “I know there’s such a great soccer following, and great players come out of Charlottesville constantly, so we have a really strong base of local Charlottesville guys.”

That local pull means the Blues are offering Virginia soccer fans a first look at two UVA transfer defenders who led their respective teams in playing time last season. Luc Mikula, who is joining the Cavaliers following three seasons with Coastal Carolina, and Moira

Kelley, an incoming transfer after four years with Kansas, will each be starting out their Charlottesville careers with the Blues.

Some of Mikula and Kelley’s summer teammates will also come from in-state schools, including William & Mary, Liberty University, University of Mary Washington, Longwood, Washington and Lee, University of Richmond, VCU, and Christopher Newport; others have traveled to Charlottesville from places as far as Japan, New Zealand, and Saint Lucia.

In return for the trip to Charlottesville, players get the chance to work under coaches with experience coaching at the college level, as well as the opportunity to play against high-quality competition.

An early-season men’s scrimmage pitted the Blues roster against a few DC United professionals, which is the kind of chance Charlottesville local and Longwood midfielder Joshua Yoder was hoping for when he signed up to play for DiNuzzo this summer.

“It’s just a good opportunity to see what’s at the next level, and not compare ourselves, but see the differences,” Yoder says.

Carolina Chao, a Charlottesville High School student and Blues defender, said playing for the Blues is the first time she has found a local opportunity to compete locally at a pre-professional level.

22 June 5 –11, 2024 c-ville.com cville.weekly @cvilleweekly cville_weekly
PHOTOS: TRISTAN WILLIAMS Fans watched at St. Anne’s-Belfield as both the men’s and women’s teams of the Charlottesville Blues FC faced opponents on Saturday, June 1. The men crushed the Shenandoah Marauders FC 5-0 later in the evening, while the women lost 0-3 to the Northern Virginia FC.

“To be honest, there’s not been a lot of soccer opportunities in Charlottesville that are the bridge between club and college,” Chao says. “There’s a lot of those opportunities in Richmond, and of course NOVA, D.C. … I’m super grateful that this has become a thing and I’m able to take advantage of the Charlottesville Blues because it’s so unique to have that right near me, only 15 minutes away.”

Blues players aren’t getting paid, so many are juggling the season between summer jobs in a bid to step up their games before the college season begins in the fall.

Some are also taking on the busy schedule because they want to be an inaugural member of the new club, DiNuzzo said.

“We have guys on the roster that are doing this to play at a great level, be a part of a first-year team, which I think is something special, and go and then really hit the ground running going into their college soccer season in the fall,” DiNuzzo said.

The Blues’ impact on these players could potentially last past college. After all, the USL designates these clubs as a potential pipeline into getting paid to play soccer.

Warhaftig, a former Colgate player who competed professionally in Iceland, wants her players to know a pro career is more possible than ever.

“Some of them may not have the belief in themselves yet that it really is a possibility,” Warhaftig says. “But my hope is that by surrounding themselves with players who are of that mentality, they will learn that they are very capable of playing professionally and gain knowledge that just because maybe they’re not going to play professionally in the U.S., doesn’t mean that there’s not a place for them to play abroad.”

Professional opportunities are now even greater for players on the women’s team thanks to the launch of the USL Super League, a professional women’s league kicking off their inaugural season in August.

“As a female soccer player, seeing this opportunity in Charlottesville has helped me,” Chao says. “And I think for the younger females playing the sport, it’ll be super helpful to see how there’s this opportunity, not just for soccer to go beyond college,

but a different kind of thing that is available to them. It’s really been eye-opening to me about where the sport can go, especially on the female side.”

While players consider their own future careers, the Blues’ ownership is already looking at the next step in the rapid growth of the Charlottesville soccer landscape.

Krow said the team’s goal is ultimately to bring professional soccer to Charlottesville by launching a men’s USL League One club and women’s USL Super League team, which would hold games throughout the majority of the year rather than squeeze them in between college seasons.

Bringing these clubs to Charlottesville would require more than just renting out a high school field, however. League guidelines require that these teams play in stadiums capable of seating at least 5,000 fans, and even UVA’s Klöckner Stadium can only fit about 3,500 viewers in traditional seating.

But that lack of a suitable venue might not be an issue in a few years. Krow says the Blues’ owners are already looking at

purchasing land where a stadium of that size could potentially be constructed.

For now, the possibility of professional soccer matches taking place in Charlottesville will have to wait, at least until the Blues prove they can succeed as a pre-professional summer league.

But Krow already believes the next step is possible, in part because of local sponsors like Three Notch’d Brewing, which created a beer collaboration with the teams, and the Boar’s Head Resort, the brand displayed on players’ sleeves.

These companies started collaborating with the Blues even before the clubs’ season-openers kicked off, Krow said.

“The community support here is unbelievable, once you start to go around and meet everybody,” Krow says. “The amount of community sponsors that we have brought into the mix is crazy.”

Soccer fans can watch both Blues teams play in one of five doubleheaders taking place at St. Anne’s-Belfield. The teams’ full schedules, and live streams of every home game, can be found at charlottesvillebluesfc.com.

23 June 5 –11, 2024 c-ville.com cville.weekly @cvilleweekly cville_weekly
“T H I S I S A FA M I LY - F R I E N D LY, C O M M U N I T Y - B A S E D S P O R T I N G E V E N T. I T ’ S G O I N G T O B E A D I F F E R E N T B U S I N E S S M O D E L T H A N P R O B A B LY M O S T H AV E S E E N , B U T I T ’ S A L L A B O U T T H E M AT C H D AY E X P E R I E N C E . I T ’ S R E A L LY A B O U T A C O M M U N I T Y.” BRIAN KROW
24 June 5 –11, 2024 c-ville.com cville.weekly @cvilleweekly cville_weekly At last, it’s time to relax in a carefree home designed for your comfort. Featuring main-level living, flex spaces, and timeless features for an easier today and tomorrow, our floor plans are ideal for right-sizing. *Promotions subject to change without notice. See a Cornerstone Homes representative for details. Life is like a song when you choose Spring Creek in Charlottesville! Low Maintenance Villa Homes From the Mid $400’s 390 Bayberry Lane (#18) Zion Crossroads, VA, 22942 3 beds | 2.5 baths | 2,275 sq ft Priced at $475,701 Ask us how you can save $7,000 today!* Featured Move-In Ready Home Take It Easy VillasAtSpringCreek.com | 434-813-6082

Proudly welcomes David Tomlin as the newest member of their Commercial REALTOR® Team!

David is committed to helping you with your Commercial Real Estate needs both locally and across the state of Virginia.

David Tomlin | Tomlin.David@aol.com | 434.989.9393 1116 E High Street, Charlottesville, VA 434.817.1240 | www.RE3CP.com

Pre-register starting May 28, 2024. jmrl.org/challenges

Summer Kickoff Parties

Nelson, May 30, 2-4pm Greene, June 3, 6-7:30pm Louisa, June 4, 2-4pm Central, June 8, 10am-12pm

Northside, June 8, 1-3pm Crozet, June 10, 5:30-6:30pm Gordon Ave, June 10, 6-8pm Scottsville, June 11, 2-4pm

Our retail store is open regularly and we carefully curate and host a variety of 21+ events, supporting local artists and artisans, to bring cannabis lovers together. Whether you are passing through the city or found your forever home in Charlottesville, Virginia, The Hidden Leaf will continue to provide a safe haven for all of us. We look forward to welcoming you with open arms in a friendly and hidden place, where you are seen and known.

25 June 5 –11, 2024 c-ville.com cville.weekly @cvilleweekly cville_weekly Summer @ your library
Join the Summer Challenge
JMRL programs are generously funded by the Friends of Jefferson-Madison Regional Library June 3 - August 31
FIND US HERE 105 W MAIN ST STE 200 CHARLOTTESVILLE VA 22902 GET IN TOUCH INFO@HIDDENLEAFCVILLE.COM (434) 284-5229 BUSINESS HOURS Wed - Fri: 12pm - 7pm Sun: 12pm - 5pm www.hiddenleafcville.com
26 June 5 –11, 2024 c-ville.com cville.weekly @cvilleweekly cville_weekly Visit us at the Eternal Attic on Friday, June 7th 10 – 4 paying you top dollar for your gold and silver and antiques. HOURS: tues - sat 9:30 - 5 • (540)-234-8676 Antiques open at 9:00 rockysgoldandsilver.com gold and silver are still up! now is the time to sell! Rocky’s pays more for gold, silver and many other items we can resell ROCKY’S BUYS: GOLD, SILVER, PLATINUM JEWELRY (EVEN BROKEN) GOLD, SILVER PLATINUM COINS, BULLION WE PAY EXTRA FOR GEMSTONES AND DIAMONDS WE CAN RESELL ROCKY’S WILL PAY UP TO $3000 FOR A GOOD ONE CARAT DIAMOND SOLITAIRE STERLING FLATWARE, HOLLOWWARE, SWORDS, CIVIL WAR ITEMS, OLD CLOCKS, SOME COSTUME JEWELRY SOME POCKET AND WRIST WATCHES LIKE ROLEX, PATEK PHILIPPE, OMEGA, AND MORE RUNNING OR NOT buying gold silver and antiques daily jewelry repairs done on the premises often while you wait PAYING TOP DOLLAR FOR HIGH GRADE WATCHES LIKE ROLEX, PATEK PHILIPPE, OMEGA, AND TAG HEUER VISIT ROCKY’S EBAY SITE FOR SPECIALS ON GOLD, SILVER, ANITQUES AND COINS 2024 SILVER EAGLES IN STOCK NOW (434) 295-9379 | Abrahamse.com | Clover Fine Art Restoration Cecile Wendover Clover Conservator Specializing for over 40 years in the thoughtful restoration and preservation of fine art. Paintings • Murals • Wallpaper Available by appointment 434.825.0734 www.stoathall.com • clover@stoathall.com Stop Paying Inflated Real Estate Commissions List Your Home for as Low as 1% Interview Jordan before you sell! Charlottesville native, Jordan Hague, is the owner and broker of Equity Saver USA which offers sellers and buyers of real estate a low cost alternative with no compromise in services or results. Interview Jordan before hiring anyone else. Ever seen what your real estate agent takes from you? Keep more of what’s yours with our 1% business model for buyers and sellers of real estate. For more information: www.EquitySaverUSA.com An Old Dominion Realty & Investment LLC company Full Service real eState. 1% commiSSion We Pay buyer cloSing coStS! What separates Jordan from others: - Born and raised in Cville - Over $16M in annual sales - Ranked in top 20 out of over 1,000 realtors - Owner and Broker - Additional Savings for Seniors 65+ - Financial supporter of area non-profits IN CHARLOTTESVILLE CELEBRATING 16 EquitySaverUSA.com • 434-964-SAVE (7283) Saved over $6,000 Saved over $6,000 Saved over $8,000 Saved over $5,000 Get Your Free Property Valuation Today! Call to learn how much you can save. Seller Review: ”We recently sold our home of 30 years to move in with our adult children. Jordan helped us step by step in preparing and planning not only for the sale of our home but in the down sizing and actual move. Jordan sold our home for over asking price and we were able to move out at our pace. Highly recommend Jordan and Equity Saver USA.” - Jim and Carol

magical forest outside of Athens, four young lovers fight for each other’s affections on the eve of their duke’s wedding. Meanwhile, six would-be thespians create stress in an attempt to impress the duke’s marriage party, and Oberon—king of the fairies—navigates his own marital missteps. Themes of friendship, jealousy, desire, and magic are all explored in this play about the irrationality of love. Plus, in a turn of meta-commentary from the Bard, someone makes an ass out of an amateur actor. $28–78, times vary. Blackfriars Playhouse, 10 S. Market St., Staunton. americanshakespearecenter.com



Celebrating 20 years of untethered comedy in C’ville and beyond, Bent Theatre’s 2024 season is set to split your sides and make you cry (with laughter, of course). The improv troupe makes the rounds of local theaters, bars, and breweries entertaining the masses with bits and acts pulled from their asses pulled from thin air! Or from a hat? Audiences are in on the joke too, shouting out suggestions that will have everyone on hand laughing out loud. Free, 7pm. Decipher Brewing, 1740 Broadway St. benttheatre.weebly.com




These aren’t your average battle hymns; they’re songs to celebrate a movement—and they’re easy to move to. Please welcome to the stage … Pride Anthems. Featuring Kevin Smith Kirkwood of Broadway’s Kinky Boots fame, New York City cabaret-crooner Amy Jo Jackson, and Grammynominated recording artist and actor Marty Thomas (who has his own Broadway bonafides), the concert spans 50 years of songs that inspire, celebrate, and commemorate LGBTQIA+ resilience in the march for equality. Covering classics from Donna Summer, Queen, George Michael, Madonna, Lady Gaga, and many more, this raucous review proves “there’s no such thing as being extra in June.” $29.75–49.75, 7:30pm. The Paramount Theater, 215 E. Main St., Downtown Mall. theparamount.net

27 June 5 –11, 2024 c-ville.com cville.weekly @cvilleweekly cville_weekly


Wednesday 6/5 music

Berto and Matt. Latin guitar night. Free, 7pm. The Bebedero, 201 W. Main St., Downtown Mall. thebebedero.com

Karaoke. Downtown C’ville’s longest-running Karaoke party. Hosted by Jenn Deville. Free, 9pm. Rapture, 303 E. Main St., Downtown Mall. rapturerestaurant.com

Open Mic Night. Open to all the musicians, poets, and everyone in between. Hosted by Nicole Giordano. Free, 9pm. Holly’s Diner, 1221 E. Market St.


A Midsummer Night’s Dream Center members perform a Shakespearean classic. Follow famed characters as they romp through the woods near Athens—from runaway young lovers to amateur actors bickering and prank-happy fairies. Free, 2:30pm. The Center at Belvedere, 540 Belvedere Blvd. thecentercville.org


Pictures and Pages. Gordon Avenue children’s librarian Glynis Welte delivers dynamic arts-related story times with a variety of exciting books, helping to enrich the art experience of a particular exhibition or piece. Free, 10am. The Fralin Museum of Art at UVA, 155 Rugby Rd. virginia.edu


Summer Sewing Sessions. An open-door sewing class. Sign up for the evenings you can attend and work on a project with an instructor at your own pace. $40, 5:30pm. The Scrappy Elephant, 1745 Allied St. scrappy elephant.com

Karaoke. Sing karaoke with us at Firefly Restaurant + Game Room. Food and drink specials from 7–9pm. Free, 7pm. Firefly, 1304 E. Market St. fireflycville.com

Michael Clem. Enjoy live tunes and specials in addition to the regular menu. Free, 5pm. Eastwood Farm and Winery, 2531 Scottsville Rd. eastwoodfarmandwinery.com

Opening Night Aria Concert. The kickoff event for Charlottesville Opera’s season. This fast-paced concert features the sixteen Ader Emerging Artists performing their most beloved arias. $20, 7pm. Grisham Hall, St. Anne’s-Belfield School, 2132 Ivy Rd. charlottesvilleopera.org

Soundflight 3 VHO returns to nature’s amphitheater for immersive, acoustic concerts in the glorious Quarry Gardens at Schuyler. Program includes operatic, art song, folk, spiritual, and contemporary repertoire. $15–45, 6pm. The Quarry Gardens at Schuyler, 1643 Salem Rd. victory hallopera.org

Travis Elliott. Travis plays originals and covers, and his thoughtful takes on classic and contemporary songs tend to tease out nuances and moods that may have slipped by you. Free, 10pm. Rapture, 303 E. Main St., Downtown Mall. rapturerestaurant.com


Dart Night. Luck-of-the-draw, double-elimination games and $1-off pints. Free, 6pm. Decipher Brewing, 1740 Broadway St. decipherbrewingco.wixsite.com

Friday 6/7 music

Watercolor Workshop. Unveil your artistic potential in our immersive workshop, “Watercolor Mushrooms: Painting Amanita Muscaria.” Ages 15+. $35, 5pm. The Scrappy Elephant, 1745 Allied St. scrappy elephant.com etc.

Bent Theatre Improv. A hilarious evening of improv comedy where you make the show by shouting out suggestions. Free, 7pm. Decipher Brewing, 1740 Broadway St. decipherbrewingco.wixsite.com

Bingo. Free to play, fun prizes! Free, 6pm. Firefly, 1304 E. Market St. fireflycville.com

Drive Professional stunt driver Ryan Gosling cruises into a dangerous world when he tries to help a neighbor (Carey Mulligan). $10, 7pm. Alamo Drafthouse Cinema, Fifth St. Station. drafthouse.com

Exhibition on Screen™: My National Gallery, London This film gives voice to those who work at the gallery—from cleaner to curator, security guard to director— who identify the one artwork that means the most to them and why. $11–15, 7pm.

The Paramount Theater, 215 E. Main St., Downtown Mall. theparamount.net

SuperFly Run Club. Run around the city, then enjoy $5 pints. Free, 6pm. SuperFly Brewing Co., 943 Preston Ave. superfly brewing.com

Thursday 6/6 music

Berto and Vincent. A night of wild flamenco rumba and Latin guitar. Free, 7pm. The Bebedero, 225 W. Main St., Downtown Mall. thebebedero.com

Duke Merrick. “Groovin’ at Greencroft” is back for another season of live and local music. All ages, open to the public. Free, 5:30pm. The Greencroft Club, 575 Rodes Dr. greencroftclub.com

Cherry Red: Rolling Stones Tribute. If you wanna rock, roll, dance, knock a few beers back, and smile ... they’re your boys. All Stones, all the time. Free, 7pm. Pro Re Nata, 6135 Rockfish Gap Tpke., Crozet. prnbrewery.com

Chickenhead Blues Band. Charlottesville’s premiere boogie-woogie beat and rhythm and blues dance band. Free, 9pm. Holly’s Diner, 1221 E. Market St.

Fridays After Five: The Currys. The Currys have been staking their claim within the indie music scene since 2013. With Rebecca Porter. Free, 5:30pm. Ting Pavilion, 700 E. Main St., Downtown Mall. tingpavilion.com

Josh Mayo and The House Sauce. C’ville favorite Josh Mayo brings rock ‘n’ roll vibes with a rotating cast of familiar friends in a cozy but spacious honky-tonk bar setting. Free, 8pm. Vision BBQ & Catering, 247 Ridge McIntire Rd. visionbbqcville.com

Ken Matthews. Come and spend Friday night at DuCard Vineyards with music by Ken Matthews, as he lays down some wailing saxophone and classic tunes on the clarinet. Free, 5pm. DuCard Vineyards, 40 Gibson Hollow Ln., Etlan. ducard vineyards.com

Midnight Buzz. Eclectic blend of acoustic and electric classic rock tunes covering the Allman Brothers, Tom Petty, Steve Miller, Joni Mitchell, Fleetwood Mac, Linda Ronstadt, and more. Free, 6pm. Glass House Winery, 5898 Free Union Rd., Free Union. glasshousewinery.com

Mr. Space Cat. Sunset soirée featuring Mr. Space Cat—six friends playing acoustic rock and blues with lots of harmonies and feelgood music. With Popitos Pizza on site. Free, 6pm. Chisholm Vineyards at Adventure Farm, 1135 Clan Chisholm Ln., Earlysville. chisholmvineyards.com

The Wavelength. Enjoy live tunes with your wine, cider, and beer along with a full menu of food options to choose from. Free, 5pm. Eastwood Farm and Winery, 2531 Scottsville Rd. eastwoodfarmandwinery.com

28 June 511, 2024 c-ville.com cville.weekly @cvilleweekly cville_weekly
2024 VOTE FOR US! BEST BRUNCH Located near Crozet - Ivy Area Just Off Route 250 Membership applications are now open! 12-Month Full Membership Included TRIAL POOL/PICKLEBALL/SOCIAL MEMBERSHIPS NOW AVAILABLE Contact the Club to schedule your tour today! 434-296-5597 575 Rodes Drive Charlottesville, Va 22903

Victoria’s Missa O Quam Gloriosum

Transport yourself to the glory of the Spanish High Renaissance as Musica Sacra Virginia presents Thomas Luis de Victoria’s Missa O Quam Gloriosum. $10–20, 8:30pm. Holy Comforter Catholic Church, 208 E. Jefferson St. musicasacravirginia.org


Friday Night Writes. An open mic for emerging musicians and writers performing short stories, poetry, and music. Free, 7pm. New Dominion Bookshop, 404 E. Main St., Downtown Mall. newdominionbookshop.com etc.

Art Mix at Ix. A fun night of painting, live music, projection art displays, and cocktails at the outdoor Ix Art Park. Free, 7pm. Ix Art Park, 522 Second St. SE. ixartpark.com

Friend Speed Dating: For Women. Friend speed dating is a light-hearted social experience designed to bring people together. Grab a seat, have a drink, and meet new friends. $20, 6pm. Albemarle CiderWorks, 2545 Rural Ridge Ln., North Garden. albemarlecider works.com

Puzzle Crawl. This puzzle crawl takes you to the breweries on Preston Avenue. Crack codes, solve puzzles, and enjoy some of Charlottesville’s best beers along the way. $15, all day. Starr Hill Brewery, Dairy Market. puzzledbee.com

Saturday 6/8 music

Berto Sales. Sounds of Brazil, Spain, and Latin America with Berto Sales. His unique fingerpicking style and contagious energy will have you tapping your feet. Free, 11am. Tavern & Grocery, 333 W. Main St. tavernand grocery.com

The Charlottesville Band. Come join us for an unforgettable concert in The Arboretum featuring the Charlottesville Albemarle Saxophone Ensemble. Free, 7pm. Kimpton The Forum Hotel, 540 Massie Rd. cvilleband.org

Free Pony. A night of indie-rock from three buzzing local acts. Charlottesville’s most underground rock band, Free Pony, is joined by Cat Ferrari—fronted by Matt Curreri—and newcomers The Blincoe Boyz. Free, 8pm. Dürty Nelly’s, 2200 Jefferson Park Ave. durtynellyscville.com

Haze and Dacey. “Music in the Mountains” series presents music by Haze and Dacey. This acoustic duo plays a variety of folk, alt-country, roots-rock, country-blues, and a hint of jazz and swing. Free, 2pm. DuCard Vineyards, 40 Gibson Hollow Ln., Etlan. ducardvineyards.com

Josh Mayo and The House Sauce. Josh Mayo and his group of great musicians lay it down with fantastic originals and masterfully done covers. Free, 10pm. The Bebedero, 201 W. Main St., Downtown Mall. thebebedero.com

Queeraoke. Welcome to Queeraoke, a place where everyone can come by and have a good time belting it all out. Free, 9pm. Holly’s Diner, 1221 E. Market St.

Ramona Martinez. Enjoy live tunes with your wine, cider, and beer along with a full menu of food options to choose from. Free, 1pm. Eastwood Farm and Winery, 2531 Scottsville Rd. eastwoodfarmand winery.com

Robert Jospé Trio. An evening filled with high-energy, world-class jazz. Free, 5pm. Glass House Winery, 5898 Free Union Rd., Free Union. glasshousewinery.com


Essaying our world

New book examines life’s curiosities through a scientific lens

Nell Greenfieldboyce’s debut book, Transient and Strange: Notes on the Science of Life, delivers on the promise of its title. A carefully woven and emotionally resonant collection of creative nonfiction essays, the book is as much a cabinet of curiosities as it is a glimpse behind the curtain of motherhood in contemporary America.

“For nearly thirty years, I have made my living by writing about science … stories that are designed to inform or delight, [but] I never planned to write about private scenes,” writes Greenfieldboyce, a science correspondent for NPR. “I kept my job as a science reporter separate from my life at home.”

Roughly a decade ago, however, that began to change when Greenfieldboyce’s friend invited her to contribute a personal essay to a creative blog run by fellow science journalists.

“It felt risky,” she reflects. “A reporter traditionally remains somewhat anonymous, and I had been a reporter for more than half of my life … But once I wrote that piece, I began to write about other personal experiences, too—including ones that were more fraught … I felt compelled to experiment—to essay.”

The essays in Transient and Strange were born out of this experimentation, and their meticulously crafted and graceful narrative arcs showcase Greenfieldboyce’s talents as both a researcher and a storyteller. She writes, “Despite what’s taught in school about the scientific method, much of scientific inquiry, like poetry, involves play and metaphor and idiosyncratic obsessions and just plain fiddling around with mysterious things.”

The mysteries explored within this collection include but are not limited to: tornado chasers and modern weather forecasting, Moby Dick and Cold War fears,

aging parents and dial-up internet, children and trauma coping, Stephen Hawking and black holes, abortion and miscarriage, flea circuses and the Black Death, the Black Stone in Mecca and Paleolithic cave art, room tone and polycystic kidney disease, and the eugenics of genetic counseling and fertility treatments.

In each of these explorations, Greenfieldboyce invites the reader into her life and her family, sharing captivating facts about the science behind the phenomena as well as more personal reflections. For instance, writing about a funnel weaver spider who has taken up residence in her house, she muses, “I wondered about her inner experience, what she thought as she crouched in her funnel, whether she had dreams.”

In another essay, on doodling, the author writes, “I think of this book I am writing, the one that’s now before you, another collection of black marks on white that I made in a state of half-aware compulsion … I told a writer friend that my exploration of doodling felt unsatisfying, that this effort wasn’t coming together in a way that made sense, and he reminded me that in an essay, unlike poetry and fiction, one can just come out and explicitly state the point of the piece, the underlying thesis or message. ‘But that implies that there is a point.’”

Indeed, Transient and Strange revels in cultivating an appreciation for layers of reality that are often overlooked or taken for granted—that could easily be mistaken as pointless. But for those who are excited by the mundane—as Greenfieldboyce writes, “Maybe you’re my favorite kind of person, the curious kind, the kind who is intrigued by this unexpected experiment”—and for those who thrill at the chance to follow someone else down countless rabbit holes, the book is a wonder.

For Greenfieldboyce, these rabbit holes are often as akin to science fair projects as they are thought experiments. In considering meteorites, she writes, “Scientists estimate that some 5,200 tons of outer space dust reaches the surface [of Earth] each year; that’s 14 tons per day, about the weight of three ambulances, drifting invisibly down.” You or I might underline this fact on the page, store it up to share as a weird factoid at a party some day, and carry on with our lives. Greenfieldboyce takes a different approach, recounting how she filled a plastic tub with water to place on her roof in the hopes of capturing some of this space dust. She writes, “Even if I’m lucky enough to have my plastic bin positioned out there to catch one at the right time, these spheres of molten-and-then-solidified space rock typically are only a few hundredths of an inch across. A micrometeorite could fit in the valley between two fingerprint ridges. Still, I go through the water in my bin with a strong magnet, to fish out anything that might contain iron.” Failing in that approach, she collects crud from her rain gutters, sifting it and hoping for a discovery that never comes, even as her family lightly ridicules her for her ongoing efforts. But that doesn’t seem to matter much to the author—it’s the search that holds the excitement.

“Maybe I’ll find a meteorite, and maybe I won’t,” she reflects. “Maybe all I’ll ever do is quietly sift through a bunch of ordinary, sometimes beautiful stuff, searching for something ethereal that I’m not equipped to recognize and probably won’t ever truly understand.” In a metaphorical sense, this act of sifting is where the true magic of Transient and Strange lies. Greenfieldboyce writes to reveal the ephemeral and extraordinary nature of our world, sharpening our senses and helping us recognize novelty in the everyday.

29 June 511, 2024 c-ville.com cville.weekly @cvilleweekly cville_weekly
Nell Greenfieldboyce will discuss Transient and Strange: Notes on the Science of Life on June 8 at New Dominion Bookshop.





Is about the Demolition and Gentrification of The Fifeville Community

Located around Fifth And Dice Streets during the 1990s as part of Charlottesville’s “Urban Renewal/ Black Removal Initiative.”

Program Director, Leslie Scott Jones

The Play Will Be Read At The Jefferson School African-American Heritage Center 233 4th Street N.W. Charlottesville, VA 22903

June 14, 2024 at 7:30 P.M.


Call (434) 260-8722 for Ticket Info

Tickets can be purchased Online at: Jefferson School African American Heritage Center. 5th & Dice by William A. James, Sr.



The University of Virginia Bookstore

400 Emmet Street, Charlottesville, VA 22904 (on UVA Grounds)

Patsy Goolsby, Manager, 434-924-1075 | bookshop@virginia.edu 2nd Act Books

214 East Main Street, Charlottesville, VA 22902

Daphne Spain, Owner, 434-202-0754 | daphnespain@gmail.com

Call or Write, William A. James, Sr. 434-985-8987 • Wjpublications@aol.com PO Box 6991, Charlottesville, VA 22906



Saturday 6/8

Soundflight 3 See listing for Thursday, June 6. $15–45, 6pm. The Quarry Gardens at Schuyler, 1643 Salem Rd., Schuyler. victoryhallopera.org

South Canal Street. “Second Saturday” concert series with South Canal Street. Their repertoire includes top hits from the golden era of music—the late 1950s to the 1970s. Free, 6pm. DuCard Vineyards, 40 Gibson Hollow Ln., Etlan. ducard vineyards.com

Sue Harlow. Americana-folk singer-songwriter whose haunting vocals delve into the depths of what makes people real. A thread of emotion runs through Sue’s music and binds together life’s moments. Free, 2:30pm. Albemarle CiderWorks, 2545 Rural Ridge Ln., North Garden. albemarleciderworks.com

The Pollocks. Batesville’s House Band. They not only bring it ... they burn it down. Come thirsty and wear your dancing shoes. $15, 7pm. The Batesville Market, 6624 Plank Rd., Batesville. batesvillemarket.com

Travis Elliott Band. Join us for upbeat and fun bands every Saturday night. Gather your friends and family and join us for live music that you’ll want to dance to. Free, 5pm. Eastwood Farm and Winery, 2531 Scottsville Rd. eastwoodfarmandwinery.com


Author Event: Nell Greenfieldboyce. Author and NPR science correspondent Nell Greenfieldboyce speaks about her new book Transient and Strange: Notes on the Science of Life. A conversation with writer Kelly Weinersmith follows. Free, 7pm. New Dominion Bookshop, 404 E Main St., Downtown Mall. ndbookshop.com


Amigurumi Bees. Join Emma as she teaches you how to make an adorable amigurumi bee. Come with basic crochet knowledge and leave with a cute bee and a bamboo crochet hook. Ages 12+. $35, 12pm. The Scrappy Elephant, 1745 Allied St. scrappy elephant.com

Beginner Pottery Wheel Workshop. Learn to throw a cup, bowl, planter, and more on the wheel. Fun for friends, families, and couples. Perfect for first-timers wanting to try out the wheel. $85, 4:30pm. Morehouse Studio, 1575 Avon St. Ext. morehouse.studio

Crochet for Beginners. Learn a new art form. Join Emma as she teaches you the basics of crochet. Leave with a bamboo crochet hook and a small crocheted washcloth. Ages 12+. $25, 10:30am. The Scrappy Elephant, 1745 Allied St. scrappy

Watercolor Class. Explore techniques to create the appearance of starfish and shallow water in watercolor paint. Ages 16+. $35, 2pm. The Scrappy Elephant, 1745 Allied St. scrappyelephant.com

Paramount On Screen: To Wong Foo, Thanks for Everything! Julie Newmar Three drag queens set off on a madcap road trip across America and struggle to make it to Los Angeles. $7–9, 7:30pm. The Paramount Theater, 215 E. Main St., Downtown Mall. theparamount.net

See listing for Friday, June 7. $15, all day. Starr Hill Brewery, Dairy Market. puzzledbee.com

Readings of recent favorites and classics. Free, 11am. New Dominion Bookshop, 404 E. Main St., Downtown Mall. newdominionbookshop.com

Sunday 6/9 music

Bluegrass Jam. All levels, all ages, all instruments. Come join the fun. The musicians gather in a circle to jam, and the audience sneaks a spot to sit or stand to watch from the perimeter. Free, 2pm. The Batesville Market, 6624 Plank Rd., Batesville. batesvillemarket.com

Patrick & Aaron Olwell and Friends. Enjoy this energetic and eclectic Irish jam session. Patrick & Aaron Olwell and Friends play their fine renditions of traditional tunes. Free, 2:30pm. Albemarle CiderWorks, 2545 Rural Ridge Ln., North Garden. albemarleciderworks.com

Sharif. Sharif travels the globe sharing his incredible talents through his music, playing both originals and covers. Free, 2pm. Glass House Winery, 5898 Free Union Rd., Free Union. glasshousewinery.com

Vinyl at the Vineyard. We’re dusting off the turntable and bringing in our favorite LP’s. Dig out the old albums and bring dad along for an afternoon of listening, sharing, and reminiscing to celebrate Father’s Day. Free, 1pm. DuCard Vineyards, 40 Gibson Hollow Ln., Etlan. ducardvineyards.com


Beginning Embroidery. Learn the basics of embroidery making a fun and flexible project. Covering satin stitch, running stitch, and backstitch. You’ll use your new skills to embellish a piece of printed fabric. Ages 16+. $60, 1pm. The Scrappy Elephant, 1745 Allied St. scrappyelephant.com

Make A Mug Workshop. Hand build a oneof-a-kind ceramic mug with a local ceramic artist. $85, 4:30pm. Morehouse Studio, 1575 Avon St. Ext. morehouse.studio Painting Workshop. “Special Small-Group Experiences.” Come to Chiswell Farm and Winery to enjoy a painting workshop with Adam. $55, 2pm. Chiswell Farm & Winery, 430 Greenwood Rd., Greenwood. chilesfamily orchards.com

Paint + Sip. Learn a variety of techniques and skills to render a “dockside dreams” scene. Paint, sip, relax, repeat. $38, 2pm. Eastwood Farm and Winery, 2531 Scottsville Rd. eastwoodfarmandwinery.com etc.

Back to the Future, Part III Marty McFly (Michael J. Fox) travels back 100 years to save Doc Brown (Christopher Lloyd) from a showdown. $10, 3:30pm. Alamo Drafthouse Cinema, 5th Street Station. drafthouse.com

Developmental Darts. Open to dart throwers of all skill levels or anyone who just wants to learn the basics. Free, 1pm. Decipher Brewing, 1740 Broadway St. decipherbrewingco.wixsite.com

Paramount On Screen: Milk. Academy Award-winner Sean Penn stars in this stirring celebration of Harvey Milk, a true man of the people. $9, 2pm. The Paramount Theater, 215 E. Main St., Downtown Mall. theparamount.net

Puzzle Crawl. See listing for Friday, June 7. $15, all day. Starr Hill Brewery, Dairy Market. puzzledbee.com

Steel Magnolias Movie Party. A tight-knit group of Southern women support each other through the ups and downs of life. $13, 6pm. Alamo Drafthouse Cinema, 5th Street Station. drafthouse.com

Monday 6/10


Berto and Vincent. A lively night of rumba guitar set in a modern atmosphere. Free, 6:30pm. South and Central Latin Grill, 946 Grady Ave., Suite 104. southandcentralgrill.com

30 June 511, 2024 @cvilleweekly cville_weekly


Comedy Open Mic. An opportunity to showcase your talent, try out new material, and take in the best local comedy that Charlottesville has to offer. Hosted by comedian Chris Alan. Free, 8pm. The Southern Café and Music Hall, 103 S. First St. thesoutherncville.com

Geeks Who Drink Trivia. Compete with teams of up to six people for chances to win gift cards. Hosted by Audrey. Free, 6:30pm. Decipher Brewing, 1740 Broadway St. decipherbrewingco.wixsite.com

Little Naturalists Program. Bring your 3–5-year-old out to Ivy Creek to introduce them to nature and get them exploring the trails. Free, 10am. Ivy Creek Natural Area and Historic River View Farm, 1780 Earlysville Rd. ivycreekfoundation.org

Rent A group of New York artists look for love, acceptance, and hope at the dawn of the 1990s. $10, 6pm. Alamo Drafthouse Cinema, 5th Street Station. drafthouse.com

Tuesday 6/11


Josh Mayo and The House Sauce. Charlottesville staples Josh Mayo and The House Sauce take the Rapture stage for a night of live originals and classic covers. Free, 10pm. Rapture, 303 E. Main St., Downtown Mall. rapturerestaurant.com

Karaoke. Sign up and sing your favorite songs. Hosted by Thunder Music. Free, 9pm. Holly’s Diner, 1221 E. Market St. Paramount Presents: Pride Anthems Celebrate Pride Month with a journey through the past 50 years of pride anthems. From Donna Summer and Queen to George Michael and Lady Gaga, the fight for LGBTQ+ equality is linked to this music. $29–49, 7:30pm. The Paramount Theater, 215 E. Main St., Downtown Mall. theparamount.net

The Charlottesville Band. The Charlottesville Band opens its 102nd Summer Season playing a program called “Music in Motion.” From gallops to waltzes and everything in between, the band will explore music created around motion. Free, 7:30pm. Monticello High School, 1400 Independence Way. cvilleband.org

Vincent Zorn. Vincent Zorn performs wild flamenco rumba. Must say OLE! Free, 7pm. The Bebedero, 225 W. Main St., Downtown Mall. thebebedero.com


A Midsummer Night’s Dream See listing for Wednesday, June 5. Free, 5:30pm. The Center at Belvedere, 540 Belvedere Blvd. thecentercville.org


Paint + Sip. Learn a variety of techniques and skills to render a “colorful country road” scene. Paint, sip, repeat. $38, 6pm. Starr Hill Downtown, 946 Grady Ave. Ste 101. catelyn kelseydesigns.com


Bingo. Five rounds of this brew-tiful game. Family-friendly, so bring the whole crew. $20, 6pm. Three Notch’d Craft Kitchen & Brewery - Charlottesville, 520 Second St. SE. threenotchdbrewing.com

But I’m a Cheerleader A high school student gets the shock of her life when she’s sent to a weird counseling camp after her parents suspect she might be a lesbian. $7, 7:15pm. Alamo Drafthouse Cinema, 5th Street Station. drafthouse.com

Geeks Who Drink Trivia. Good trivia and good times at this awesome evening of challenging questions and endless fun. Free, 7pm. Firefly, 1304 E. Market St. fireflycville.com

Music Bingo. Prizes to be won. Hosted by King Trivia. Free, 7pm. SuperFly Brewing Co., 943 Preston Ave. superflybrewing.com



The Barn Swallow Artisan Gallery 796 Gillums Ridge Rd. “Listening to Artifacts,” new works in sculpture and collage by Kim Boggs. Through July 7. First Fridays reception at 5:30pm.

Botanical Fare Restaurant 421 E. Main St. Downtown Mall. “Then And Now,” a series of conceptual photographs by Cindy Stegmeier. Through June.

Chroma Projects Inside Vault Virginia, Third St. SE. In the Micro Gallery, “Nocturne,” Peter Eudenbach’s multidisciplinary exhibit explores relationships and poetic connections. Through June 28. First Fridays reception at 5pm.

The Connaughton Gallery McIntire School of Commerce, UVA Grounds. “Virginia is for Artists,” paintings and prints by Uzo Njoku. Through June 14.

Crozet Artisan Depot 5791 Three Notch’d Rd., Crozet. “Wild Wonder” by Lucinda Rowe features intricate biological illustrations with a focus on birds and insects. Meet the artist June 15, 11am–1pm. “Object Study” by Sarah Grace Cheek displays reimagined adaptations of life through hand- and power-carving techniques. Through June.

C’ville Arts Cooperative Gallery 118 E. Main St., Downtown Mall. “Ebb & Flow,” exploring painter and mosaicist Eileen Butler’s journey through glass and paint. Through June. First Fridays reception at 5pm.

Dovetail Design and Cabinetry 1740 Broadway St., Suite 3. “TWEETS,” acrylic and watercolor works by Matalie Deane and Juliette Swenson. Through July.

FIREFLY Restaurant & Game Room 1304

E. Market St. Whimsical paintings by Oxana Balke. Through June 30. Opening reception June 6 at 6pm.


The Fralin Museum of Art at UVA 155 Rugby Rd. “Madayin: Eight Decades of Aboriginal Australian Bark Painting from Yirrkala.” Through July 14. “Patricia Michaels: Bringing Awareness for Missing and Murdered Indigenous Women and Relatives.” Through June 10. Fralin After 5 Tasting Notes, a pairing of art and wine. June 7, 5:30pm.

Infinite Repeats Studio 1740 Broadway St. “Stale Bread” by Torie Topor (@eirotropot) features prints and other mixed media. Through June 28. First Fridays reception, 7–9pm.

Ix Art Park 522 Second St. SE. Art Mix at Ix, a fun night of painting, live music, projection art displays, and cocktails. Paint Swap Party, where artists switch canvases every 5 minutes. First Fridays, 7pm.

Journey Group 418 Fourth St. NE. “PANGRAM: The Art of Letters,” featuring small works by dozens of artists. All sales benefit Literacy Volunteers. June 7, 5pm, Kluge-Ruhe Aboriginal Art Collection of UVA 400 Worrell Dr. The Charlottesville Indigenous Art Takeover. “Shifting Ground: Prints by Indigenous Australian Artists from the Basil Hall Editions Workshop Proofs Collection,” curated by Jessyca Hutchens, featuring work by 22 Indigenous Australian artists. Through October 6. “Close to the Wind,” prints, installation, and mixed media works by Lisa Waup. Through June 30.

Les Yeux du Monde 841 Wolf Trap Rd. “Passenger Manifest,” oil paintings, collage, and works on paper by Dean Dass. Through June 30.

Martin Horn 210 Carlton Rd. Images from wildlife photographer Jacob Buck. First Fridays reception 5pm.

McGuffey Art Center 201 Second St. NW. In the Smith Gallery, “In a Different Light,” pictorialist photographs by Russell Hart exploring ways humans occupy natural landscape from June 4-30. Artist talk June 16, 2–3pm. First Floor North and South Galleries, artworks by McGuffey Art Center Incubators from 2023–24. Second Floor Gallery

North, “Miscellaneous Musings of a Manic Maker,” by Jill Kerttula. Second Floor Gallery South, Blake Hurt’s “Greek Landscapes.” Through June. First Fridays reception, 5:30–8pm. Y’art Sale June 8, 10am–2pm.

New City Arts 114 Third St. NE. In the Welcome Gallery, “above [collecting] below [detaching] above,” a multimedia installation by Anna Hogg. Through June 27. First Fridays reception at 5pm, artist talk at 6pm.

The PVCC Gallery V. Earl Dickinson Building, 501 College Dr. The 2024 Student Art Exhibition. Through September 7.

Quirk Gallery 499 W. Main St. In “Care Less,” artist Seth Bauserman borrows the subject matter of his daughter’s drawings to explore the space between innocence and experience. Through July 28. First Fridays reception at 6pm.

Random Row Brewing Co. 608 Preston Ave. “Landscapes: Here and There,” oil paintings and pastel works by Julia Kindred. Through June.

The Rotunda UVA Grounds In the Upper West Oval Room, the Charlottesville Indigenous Art Takeover. “Waŋupini: Clouds Of Remembrance And Return.” Through July 7.

Second Street Gallery 115 Second St. SE. In the Main Gallery, “The Art of Collage” comprises works of 41 contemporary artists. In the Dové Gallery, “Paper Room,” a mixed-media and interactive exhibition by Jess Walters with Stephen Haske and Sarah Lawson. Through July 19. First Fridays events at 5:30pm.

Studio Ix 969 Second St. SE. “Journey From Grief To Art,” paintings by Colleen Rosenberry. Vivid and heartfelt representation of nature and the artist’s inner feelings about life and death. Through June. Artist’s Talk June 27, 5pm. First Fridays reception at 5pm.

The Unitarian Universalist Congregation of Charlottesville 717 Rugby Rd. Photographs by David Shoch. Through June.

31 June 511, 2024 c-ville.com cville.weekly @cvilleweekly cville_weekly
Russell Hart at McGuffey Art Center Julia Kindred at Random Row Brewery Anna Hogg at New City Arts Peg Sheridan at SVAC Sarah Grace Cheek at Crozet Artisan Depot IMAGES COURTESY OF GALLERIES AND/OR ARTISTS



Complete the grid so that every row, column, and 3x3 box contains every digit from 1 to 9 inclusively.

32 June 5 –11, 2024 c-ville.com cville.weekly @cvilleweekly cville_weekly
solution #1 solution
#2 solution
#2 #5 #4
#1 #4


1. Put ___ to (halt)

6. Argument

10. Racing form info

14. Curmudgeonly sort

15. Suffix with “trillion”

16. Miami team

17. Wrigley brand discontinued in the 1990s but brought back in 2004

19. ___ mort als

20. Concert souvenir

21. ___ seat (enviable position)

23. Dessert with a lattice

24. Bur y the ___

25. Believed to be

27. No-cost gift, as some spell it

30. Poly follower?

31. Half a NYC neighborhood?

32. Lawn sign word, maybe

35. “Sure!”

36. Actor Michael of “Ant-Man”

37. Prepared to ride, with “up”

41. Increases the st aff

44. Lorna ___ (Nabisco cookie)

45. Tahiti’s capital and largest city

46. Swiss territorial divisions

48. Cinco follower

49. Rainforest inhabitant

50. Chart topper, perhaps

52. Playfully demure

55. Commuted by bus

57. Group that covered “Venus” to hit the 1986 charts

59. Carmaker Ransom

60. Suffix after “out”

61. Light show beam

62. “The ___ From Brazil”

63. “While” beginning, once

64. Shell out


1. Eight, in Germany

2. “Leaving Las Vegas” actress Elisabeth

3. London subway

4. Spheroid

5. Pill with no intended effect

6. Fried lightly

7. Soft drink that used to have a “Mr.” title

8. Dispute settler

9. Flower named for its fragrance

10. Unit of electrical resistance

11. Suspended animation that’s really cold

12. 1997 Literature Nobelist ___ Fo

13. Take the wheel

18. Part of RBG

22. Love to a fault

24. Directionally named Titleist ball for pro golfers (there’s also a “dash” version)

26. Shape-shifting spirits in Scottish folklore

27. ___ Most Wanted list

28. “Fancy” singer McEntire

29. 1999 Cartoon Network title trio

33. Online tech review site

34. Zap, in a way

38. “A Strange ___” (Tony-winning musical)

39. Elevate in rank

40. Lose hope

41. Presumptuous one

42. Exult ant song

43. Corkscrew shapes

46. Chocolate substitute

47. Speed skater ___ Anton Ohno

51. Super Mario World console, for short

52. Law assignment

53. Sign of impending doom

54. Patio locale

56. Curvy letter

58. Jurassic 5 genre

33 June 5 –11, 2024 c-ville.com cville.weekly @cvilleweekly cville_weekly
ANSWERS 5/22/24 Opera biffs CARED LCDS SHAD OTERI ALIE IAGO MAGICFLUKE DYAN FRANKLIN NEEDIT YIN DOGGIOVANNI BAJA DUE OJELLO LOT DEVS ZOWIE POL FOLIO SEEP SAX CARMAN NHL NOLA WILLIAMTEAL TBA ONEILL AUTODIAL KNOT LATRIVIATA EINE OREO ERROR NEAR WARN REARM 12345 6789 10111213 14 15 16 17 18 19 20 21 22 23 24 25 26 272829 30 31 32 3334 35 36 37 383940 414243 44 45 4647 48 49 50 51 525354 55 56 57 58 59 60 61 62 63 64 #5 solution #3 #6 #6 solution
34 June 5 –11, 2024 c-ville.com cville.weekly @cvilleweekly cville_weekly



(April 20-May 20): Since 1969, Taurus singer-songwriter Willie Nelson has played his favorite guitar in over 10,000 shows. His name for it is Trigger. Willie doesn’t hold onto it simply for nostalgic reasons. He says it has the greatest tone he has ever heard in a guitar. Though bruised and scratched, it gets a yearly check-up and repair. Nelson regards it as an extension of himself, like a part of his body. Is there anything like Trigger in your life, Taurus? Now is a good time to give it extra care and attention. The same is true for all your valuable belongings and accessories. Give them big doses of love.

(April 20-May 20): There is an abundance of good news, Taurus. In the coming weeks, your conversations could awaken realizations that will augment your wealth—both the financial and emotional kind. So be eager to commune with vigorous souls who inspire your power to attract resources and goodies. Furthermore, you could generate enriching benefits for yourself by engaging with unfamiliar influences that are outside your web of expectations. Don’t be too sure you already know everything you need. Helpful surprises could arrive if you’re extra open-minded.



(June 21–July 22): Your subconscious mind is full of marvelous capacities and magic potencies. But it also contains old habits of feeling and thinking that influence you to respond to life in ways that are out of sync with what’s actually happening. These habits may sabotage or undermine your conscious intentions. Now here’s the good news: In the next nine months, there’s a lot you can do to dissolve the outmoded imprints. You will have more power than ever before to perform this wizardry. So get started! How? Ask your subconscious mind to send you intuitions about how to proceed.

(June 21–July 22): When I worked as a janitor at India Joze restaurant in Santa Cruz, California, I did the best I could. But I was unskilled in the janitorial arts. I couldn’t fix broken machines and I lacked expertise about effective cleaning agents. Plus, I was lazy. Who could blame me? I wasn’t doing my life’s work. I had no love for my job. Is there an even remotely comparable situation in your life, Cancerian? Are you involved with tasks that neither thrill you nor provide you with useful education? The coming months will be an excellent time to wean yourself from these activities.







(May 21-June 20): Though 2024 isn’t even half over, you have already earned the title “Least Boring Zodiac Sign of the Year.” Or maybe a more positive way to frame it would be to award you the title “Most Scintillating, Interesting, and Stimulating Zodiac Sign of the Year.” Please keep doing what you have been doing, Gemini. Entertain us with your unruly escapades and gossip-worthy breakthroughs. Encourage us to question our dull certainties and dare us to be more fun. If we seem nervous to be in your stirring presence, disarm our worries with your humor.

(May 21-June 20): Off the coast of West Africa is an imaginary place called Null Island. A weather buoy is permanently moored there.

Geographers have nicknamed it “Soul Buoy.” It’s the one location on Earth where zero degrees latitude intersects with zero degrees longitude. Since it’s at sea level, its elevation is zero, too. I regard this spot as a fun metaphor for the current state of your destiny, Gemini. You are at a triple zero point, with your innocence almost fully restored. The horizons are wide, the potentials are expansive, and you are as open and free as it’s possible for you to be.

Maybe you are comfortable with your current type of success and don’t want my cheerleading. But if you would welcome an ally like me—an amiable motivator and sympathetic booster—I will be glad to help you strive for new heights of accomplishment.


BCE, Chinese people had built many local walls designed to keep out invaders. Qin Shi Huang initiated a great public works project to connect all of these fragments into what’s now known as the Great Wall of China. He also erected a vast system of roads and a citysized mausoleum filled with the Terracotta Army: sculptures of 8,000 soldiers with their chariots and horses. Qin Shi Huang was a big thinker who was also highly organized! In accordance with astrological omens, I invite you to glide into your very own Qin Shi Huang phase. What long-lasting structures do you want to build in the next 11 months?



the way, could be freer and more muscular than it has been in a long time. Now here are the potential developments. 1. An offer to create one of the most symbiotic unions or robust collaborations ever. 2. Great chances for you to capitalize on the success of others. 3. Alterations in the family configuration. 4. Major shifts in loyalty and affinity. 5. A raise in rank. 6. Revelations of secrets you can use to your advantage.


(July 23–Aug. 22): I foresee two possible approaches for you in the coming months. Either will probably work, so it’s up to you to decide which feels most fun and interesting. In the first option, you will pursue the rewards you treasure by creating your own rules as you outfox the system’s standard way of doing things. In the second alternative, you will aim for success by mostly playing within the rules of the system except for some ethical scheming and maneuvering that outflank the system’s rules. My advice is to choose one or the other, and not try to do both.


(July 23–Aug. 22): The fairy tale “Jack and the Beanstalk” will serve as a prime metaphor for you in the coming weeks. Ruminate on its themes as being applicable to your life. I’ll refresh you with the main points of the story. Young Jack and his mother need money, so she decides to take drastic measures. She bids him to sell the family cow at the marketplace a few miles away. But on the way into town, Jack meets a man who coaxes him to sell the cow in exchange for magic beans—not money. When Jack returns home, his mother is angry at his foolishness. In disgust, she flings the beans out the window into the dirt. Later, though, the beans live up to their promise. They grow into a giant beanstalk that Jack climbs to reach the lair of a giant who lives in the clouds. There Jack retrieves three of his family’s lost treasures, which had been stolen by the giant long ago.


(Sept. 23–Oct. 22): Three months after Rachel Denning bore her fourth child, she and her husband sold everything they owned and embarked on a nomadic life. They have been roaming ever since, adding three more kids along the way. She says they have become addicted to “the personal transformation that travel extracts.” She loves how wandering free “causes you to be uncomfortable, to step out of the familiar and into the unknown. It compels you to see with new eyes and to consider things you had never been aware of. It removes preconceptions, biases, and small-mindedness.” If you were ever going to flirt with Rachel Denning’s approach, Libra, the next 12 months would be a favorable time. Could you approximate the same healing growth without globetrotting journeys? ProbHomework: Ask your imagination to show you appealing ways to expand.


(Sept. 23–Oct. 22): Psychologist Carl Jung believed we could accomplish profound self-transformation by working hard on our psyches’ unripe and wounded aspects. That might entail honest self-examination, objective observation of how we affect others, and a willingness to recognize and forgive our mistakes. Jung also recommended another way to heal our neuroses: through the power of numinous experiences. By “numinous,” he meant mystical, sublime, or awe-inspiring. Jung said that such visitations could radically diminish our painful habits of mind and feeling. They might arrive through grace, thanks to life’s surprising interventions. They may also be coaxed to appear through meditation, dreamwork, communing with myth and fairy tales, and spiritual practices. I foresee a wealth of numinous events in your life during the coming months, Libra. May they bring you a steady stream of healing.

(Nov. 22-Dec. 21): If you simply let the natural flow take you where it will in the coming weeks, you would become a magnet for both degenerative and creative influences. Fortunately, you are reading this oracle, which will help ensure the natural flow won’t lead you toward degenerative influences. With this timely oracle, I am advising you to monitor and suppress any unconscious attractions you might have for bewildering risks and seemingly interesting possibilities that are actually dead ends. Don’t flirt with decadent glamour or fake beauty, dear Sagittarius! Instead, make yourself fully available for only the best resources that will uplift and inspire you.


(Nov. 22-Dec. 21): Have you been metaphysically itchy and psychologically ticklish? Are you unsure whether those tingling sensations you’re feeling are worrisome symptoms or signs of healing and awakening? I believe they are signs of healing and awakening. They suggest you are doing the metaphorical equivalent of what a snake does when it sheds its skin. Expect imminent redemption, Sagittarius! Reframe the discomfort as a herald of relief and release.


now, I advise you to flirt with modest adventures and sensible risks. Can you contain your burning, churning yearnings for a while? Are you willing to coax your crazy wild heart into enjoying some mild pleasures? By early autumn, I’m guessing you will have done the necessary preparations to successfully roam through the experimental frontiers. Until then, you are most likely to corral X-factors on your behalf if you pace yourself and bide your time.

ateur is “someone who pursues sports, studies, or other activities purely for pleasure instead of for financial gain or professional advancement.” In accordance with astrological omens, I encourage you to make this a featured theme in the coming months. On a regular basis, seek out experiences simply because they make you feel good. Engage in lots of playtime. At least part-time, specialize in fun and games.



(Feb. 20-March 20): Good news, Pisces: In the coming weeks, one of your flaws will mysteriously become less flawed. It will lose some of its power to undermine you. If you engage in focused meditation about it, you could rob it of even more of its obstructive force. More good news: You will have an enhanced capacity to distinguish between skillful pretending and earthy authenticity. No one can trick you or fool you. Can you handle even more good news? You will have a skillful knack for finding imperfect but effective solutions to problems that have no perfect solution.

(Aug. 23–Sept. 22): Please note that during the next 12 months, I may seem a bit pushy in my dealings with you. I will encourage you to redefine and enhance your ambitions. I will exhort you to dream bigger. There may come times when you wish I wouldn’t dare you to be so bold. I will understand, then, if you refrain from regularly reading my horoscopes.


(Aug. 23–Sept. 22): Before the reign of Emperor Qin Shi Huang in the third century

(Oct. 23-Nov. 21): Among the Europeans who first settled in South America were Jews who had been forcibly converted to Christianity by Portuguese and Spanish persecutions. Centuries later, some families resolved to reclaim their Jewish heritage. They led a movement called la sangre llama—a Spanish phrase meaning “the blood is calling.” I invite you to be inspired by this retrieval, Scorpio. The coming months will be an excellent time to commune with aspects of your past that have been neglected or forgotten. Your ancestors may have messages for you. Go in search of missing information about your origins.

(Dec. 22-Jan. 19): Capricorn politician Robert F. Kennedy Jr. is campaigning to be US President. But oops: He recently confessed that a parasitic worm once ate a portion of his brain, damaging his memory and cognitive skills. “The worm is dead now,” he assured us, as if that were a good reason to vote for him. Why am I bringing this up? Like most of us, you have secrets that if revealed might wreak at least a bit of mayhem. As tempting as it might be to share them with the world—perhaps in an effort to feel free of their burden—it’s best to keep them hidden for now. Kennedy’s brain worm is in that category. Don’t be like him in the coming weeks. Keep your reputation and public image strong. Show your best facets to the world.

(Oct. 23-Nov. 21): In a moment, I will list events I foresee as being possible for you during the next 11 months. They are cosmic tendencies but not cosmic mandates. Whether or not they actually occur will depend on how you wield your willpower—which, by

(Dec. 22-Jan. 19): It’s time for Super Mom to make an appearance. Some circumstances in your life could benefit from healing tweaks best initiated by her. And when I say “Super Mom,” I’m not necessarily referring to your actual mother. I’m envisioning a wise older woman who sees you as you really are and who can assist you in living your destiny according to your own inner necessity, no one else’s. If you have no Super Mom in your world, see if you can locate one, even hire one. I also recommend creating an inner Super Mom in your imagination. You need and deserve sympathetic input from the archetype of the sage crone.



(Jan. 20-Feb. 19): I suspect that later in 2024, I will authorize you to commune with boisterous adventures and tricky risks. But right

(Jan. 20-Feb. 19): The English and French word “amateur” comes from amatus, the past participle of the Latin word amare, which means “to love.” According to one definition, an am-


(Feb. 20-March 20): “Oh God, if there is a God, save my soul, if I have a soul.” That prayer was the handiwork of Piscean philosopher Joseph Ernest Renan. If his ironic minimalism is the only spiritual aspiration you can manage right now, so be it. But I hope you will strive for a more intimate, expansive, and personal connection with the Divine Intelligence. The coming weeks will be an extra favorable time for you to speak and listen to mysterious powers beyond your rational comprehension. Please take advantage! Go in quest of the sweet, deep lowdown directly from the Sublime Source!


(March 21-April 19): The term “maze” has various meanings. Most commonly, it signifies a puzzling cluster of choices that lead nowhere and bode frustration. But there are more positive meanings of the word. In ancient myths, a maze was where heroes underwent ritual tests. There they might summon ingenuity to win access to a hidden treasure. In modern psychology labs, the maze is a structure used to stimulate learning in rats. According to my analysis of the astrological omens, the maze you are now in is metaphorically akin to the second two meanings, not the first.

(March 21-April 19): What potentials should you strive to ripen as the expansive planet Jupiter glides through your astrological House of Connection, Communication, and Education in the coming months? I’ll offer my intuitions. On the downside, there may be risks of talking carelessly, forging superficial links, and learning inessential lessons. On the plus side, you will generate good luck and abundant vitality if you use language artfully, seek out the finest teachings, and connect with quality people and institutions. In the most favorable prognosis I can imagine, you will become smarter and wiser. Your knack for avoiding boredom and finding fascination will be at a peak.

Expanded weekly audio horoscopes and daily text message horoscopes: RealAstrology.com, (877) 873-4888

Expanded weekly audio horoscopes and daily text message horoscopes: RealAstrology.com, (877) 873-4888

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Embracing the awkward

It goes without saying that we had to edit this interview for length. That’s what usually happens when you get best friends together—let alone best friends who’ve known each other for 20 years and have recently launched a podcast. “Well, That Was Awkward,” from Bree Luck and Mendy St. Ours, promises to celebrate authenticity and vulnerability in the way only besties can.

“Society is full of people trying to appear cool and invulnerable,” says St. Ours. “We wanted to do something authentic, empathetic, and relatable, but also entertaining and funny.”

The episodes, 30 minutes (“-ish,” says Luck) each and released on Thursdays, are produced by Luck’s Awkward Sage Media, a company she founded in 2023 that focuses specifically on personal, professional, and spiritual development shows. “Well, That Was Awkward” fits right in, spotlighting real (and real awkward) crowdsourced stories from listeners, submitted on social media or via email.

“Ultimately, we hope to provide entertainment and a reminder that it’s okay to be imperfect,” says Luck.

How did you settle on “Well, That Was Awkward” as a title and concept?

Mendy St. Ours: Pretty much every day, people tell us about something awkward in their lives. Sometimes it’s a small story—like going to a PTA meeting with your skirt tucked into your drawers—or a BIG story, like your ex showing up at your wedding with a clown nose on.

Bree Luck: That happened to me. Plus, post-pandemic statistics show that people feel a greater sense of social anxiety and awkwardness than ever before.

MSO: She doesn’t have numbers to back that up. You’ll have to trust her on that. So it just felt natural to lean into helping people normalize their most awkward moments—to laugh with them—and to mitigate or even eradicate the shame surrounding our mishaps. What does it mean to “embrace the awkward”?

BL: Honestly, it means just taking yourself a little less seriously. As we work our

way through such a polarizing period in our culture, it’s about finding that balance for taking responsibility for your missteps without delv-

Bree Luck (left) says the hot tub at ACAC is basically the production office for “Well, That Was Awkward,” the podcast she co-hosts with Mendy St. Ours.

ing into self-loathing. We can make mistakes, course-correct, and move on.

MSO: And learn that your worst moments can turn

into fantastically entertaining tales.

How many times a day do you all say the word “awkward” and are you okay with it?

MSO: Honestly, we’ve lost count! “Awkward” is basically our love language at this point, and we’re totally okay with it. Embracing the awkward is our superpower.

Bree, is this the first podcast under the Awkward Sage Media umbrella that you’ve hosted?

BL: No, but it is the first one I’ve started while I’m busy producing a bunch of other podcasts. I started my first podcast “Pause To Go”—about navigating life transitions, like menopause and perimenopause (also awkward topics)—back in 2022. Then, about a year ago, I launched Awkward Sage

Media, which offers podcast production services for coaches, healers, and educators. I currently produce eight podcasts under the Awkward Sage umbrella, and seven are featured in the Awkward Sage Network.

What’s it like taking on that particular role?

BL: Co-hosting “Well, That Was Awkward” with Mendy is exactly the project I’ve been hoping for. I get to hang out with my talented bestie, share some great stories, and (hopefully) help people feel a little less alone in their awkwardness.

Listen to “Well, That Was Awkward” wherever you listen to podcasts, or visit awkwardsagemedia. com/show/well-that-wasawkward-podcast.

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