Monday, August 6, 2007

8/3/07 First Bluemont, East Ashland Development, YMCA's Bright Beginnings

The first Bluemont concert of the summer was held indoors for the first time this past Sunday at the Hanover Arts and Activities Center. While we all appreciate a good rain storm in the middle of summer, it would have been nice if it held off until after 9 pm. The crowd was small, but enthusiastic for Mary Ann Redmond, her band, and her dog, who filled the Center with soulful rhythm and blues. Before the concert, Ms. Redmond took her music to the Ashland Convalescent Center, as part of the Outreach that makes these Bluemont events so much more than just a show. Come out for the second concert, this Sunday, Aug. 5th when we welcome renowned folk singer John McCutcheon to our town. Tickets are $5 for adults, $4 for Bluemont friends and seniors, and $2 for children under 12. Tickets are available for purchase at the concert only.

This Wednesday, August 7, the Ashland Town Council will be meeting at 7pm at Town Hall. This should be a pretty important meeting and if you’re at all concerned about The Wilton Company’s development of East Ashland/Ashbury, then you should attend if your schedule permits it.

The children of Hanover County are fortunate that the YMCA’s “Bright Beginnings” Program has such dedicated volunteers who help hundreds of kids get the school supplies and new clothes that they need to start school. Please help support this program that makes such a difference in the life of a child in your neighborhood. You can give a monetary donation on-line at www.ymcarichmond.org (go to “branches”, then “Patrick Henry”, then “Bright Beginnings”. You can also drop off donations of school supplies at any YMCA branch. Call 798-0057 to see how you can help.

The Farmer’s Market is open every Saturday from 9am to noon behind Town Hall. Be sure to stop by and see all the beautiful organic produce grown right in your back yard. Eating local foods is not only healthy, but also saves energy when the food isn’t shipped from across the country. Plus, you’re supporting small Hanover farms which are a vital part of our lovely county. I’ve heard that there are plans in the works to build a new, covered market for next summer.

Congratulations to Mattie Grant who secured her first medal at the Greater Richmond Aquatic League’s Championships this past weekend in Northern Virginia!

You can reach me by phone at (804) 310-5320 or email at ashlandnews@gmail.com. Let me know about what’s going on in Ashland for the month of August. Have a great week!

8/10/07 John McCutcheon, Mighty Barracudas, Library Concert, Farmer's Market Music

Our Bluemont concerts seem to be attracting thunder storms this summer. We are be caught between wanting the rain, and wanting a dry evening to listen to some music. John McCutcheon was particularly incredible this past Sunday. There was a whole stage set with several different instruments and I kept thinking that his band would be arriving any minute, but he played alone- entertaining the crowd with banjo, piano, guitar, hammer dulcimer, and the auto harp. We were lucky to hear half of his show and unfortunately the skies opened up just after intermission, making us all scurry home. Let’s try again this coming Sunday when the Mark Newton Band comes to town with some wonderful contemporary bluegrass. Tickets are $5 for adults, $4 for Bluemont friends and seniors, and $2 for children under 12. The show begins at 7 pm on the front lawn of the Hanover Arts and Activities Center, 500 South Center St. Call 798-5018 for more information.

Next Tuesday, August 21st, the Ashland Town Council will hold a public hearing at 7pm. An approval or denial of the East Ashland/Ashbury project could happen that night. Please come out and let your town council hear what you think.

The Ashland Barracudas won the Len Everett Award for Division II at the Greater Richmond Aquatic League’s Championship Swim Meet in Northern Virginia. This prestigious award recognizes exceptional sportsmanship during the regular season and is voted on by each team within the division. This is the third time that our team has won this award in six years. What a wonderful team we have: coaches, swimmers, and parent volunteers. Three cheers for the Baracudas!

Congratulations to all the winners and record breakers: Elisa Worrell, Seth Gulas, Matthew Pienkowski, Quinny Kinser, Curran Henry, and Lui Mallory.

The Ashland Farmer’s Market is the place to be on Saturday mornings. Not only will you find enough organic and local veggies to last you the entire week, but now there is music to serenade you while you shop. We’ve heard bluegrass from C.B. Schools and Chris Hale, and Celtic and Irish music from Daniel Gonet. Shopping at the Farmer’s Market is a wonderful way to support small, local farmers which are such an important part of our community. The market is open from 9 am to noon every Saturday in the parking lot behind Town Hall.

Wednesday, August 15th is the deadline to register your child for fall soccer with the Ashland Youth Soccer League. Register on-line at www.aysl.org. Call Vern Inge at 798-7485 or Diane Kellogg at 798-5430 for more information.

Mark your calendar for Friday, August 24 for a free concert at the Ashland Library. Local folk artists “Coleman and Fuller” will perform at 7pm. Come listen and enjoy some ice cream on a hot summer’s evening.

There are only a few more weeks left of summer before the school buses start rolling again. I think we would all be better off if we resisted the pull of the retail stores who start marketing school supplies as soon as the 4th of July is over. I say relax, and pretend it’s the middle of June, and that the summer is spread out before you like a dusty dirt road. Spend some evenings catching lightning bugs, or go float in the Town Pool and pretend that you’re 12 years old again. Fall and winter will be here too soon and we’re bound to get some snow and ice this year.

Call or email me with your Ashland news. You all are the people that make this town such a fun place to live. Ring me at 804-310-5320 or email ashlandnews@gmail.com. Have a wonderful weekend. See you at Bluemont!