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Posts from July 2014
by Deirdre Blake posted Jul 31 2014 9:33AM
You'll see lots of people around Fredericksburg's Hurkamp Park tonight.
The more than 200 people that bought tickets will be helping crown the local "Sandwich King" in the inaugural "Sandwich Invitational." It kicks of ten days of summer restaurant week that starts tomorrow and runs for ten days. Seventeen participating restaurants will offer two special menu selections for 20-bucks. 
by Deirdre Blake posted Jul 31 2014 9:32AM

A word of caution from a local infectious disease specialist about going swimming in the Potomac River or other local waterways, especially after days of heavy rain.
A Stafford man is getting a skin graft after he picked up a vibrio bacteria, that's acted like a flesh eating virus. He scraped his knee on a board off a dock in an inlet in the Potomac and got sick later that day. Doctors say if you're going swimming make sure you don't have any cuts or open sores on your body. 
by Deirdre Blake posted Jul 31 2014 9:28AM

The recent death of a young almost mother of five from Spotsylvania is a reminder to be aware of what your allergic to and to be ready.
It was ultimately a brain anuerism that took Sarah Harkins' life, but multiple bee stinks caused the initial shock. A nature camp she was leading this weekend for home schooled kids at St. Mary's Catholic Church will be run by her friends instead. Money is still being raised for Sarah's family at 
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People : Sarah Harkins
by Deirdre Blake posted Jul 31 2014 9:27AM
If you've got to do some business with the city of Fredericksburg, you'll be doing it at a new spot, starting next week.
The Fredericksburg Circuit Court is moving from the long-time Renwick building, one block away, to the new courthouse at 701 Princess Anne Street. The General District and Circuit courts will be closed tomorrow and Monday for the move. The next cases in the new building are set for next Thursday.
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Location : Fredericksburg
by Deirdre Blake posted Jul 31 2014 9:22AM
You might think of college frat guys as being all about parties, but a group of them from the Pi Kappa Fraternity in California are making a real difference.
More than 30 of them have been cycling on a 3900 mile journey to raise awareness for people with disabilities. The Push America's Journey of Hope Team gets to the Rappahannock Adult Activities building in Fredericksburg at 5:00 p.m. today. They get to the capitol Saturday and every one of them has committed to raising a minimum of $5,500 bucks.
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Topics : Social Issues
Location : California
People : Hope Team
by Deirdre Blake posted Jul 31 2014 9:20AM
More fake money has surfaced in our region. A Stafford man is facing a felony charge after being accused of trying to buy fast food with a counterfeit $20 bill yesterday.
A quick employee at the Warrenton Road McDonald's apparently knew immediately it was fake though. He gave the cops multiple stories about where the bill might have come from, but they found eight more in his car.
by Deirdre Blake posted Jul 31 2014 9:19AM
You may have already been enjoying what the annual Fredericksburg Fair has to offer and still can through Sunday, but another one is right around the corner. Advanced ticket sales for the State Fair of Virginia start tomorrow on The event at the Meadow Event Park in Caroline starts September 26th through October 5th.
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Location : Virginia
by Deirdre Blake posted Jul 31 2014 9:18AM
Back to school is on the way and Stafford schools need your help to get supplies to kids in need. It's taking donations at the Porter and England Run Libraries and Chick-Fil-A restaurants on Dunn Drive and International Parkway. Get those details at
A collection for Spotsylvania students is tomorrow from 9 a.m. to 6 p.m. at the Southpoint Walmart.
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Topics : Education
by Deirdre Blake posted Jul 31 2014 9:17AM
It'll cost you more to send your kids to Virginia colleges and universities, thanks to a decision by the State Council for Higher Education.
It says undergraduates at public four-year schools will see an average increase of about 5 percent, or $544, in tuition and fees in the 2014-15 academic year. Virginia community college students will pay about $180 more per year, or an increase of 4.6 percent.
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Topics : Education
Location : Virginia
by Deirdre Blake posted Jul 30 2014 9:11AM
A long awaited groundbreaking is set for VRE's new station in Spotsylvania, in the Crossroads Industrial Park, on August 12th.
It's also advertising for bids on the new station and 15-hundred space parking lot. Earlier this month, VDOT filed a "certificate of take" in court that lets the county start the construction process. The property owners and VDOT could still go to court to settle the price for the 25 acres of land.
by Deirdre Blake posted Jul 30 2014 9:08AM

You can get everything from notebooks, folders and backpacks to calculators and even clothes during this weekend's back to school tax holiday.
It runs from Friday through Sunday for school supplies 20 bucks or less. For clothing and shoes, they have to cost under 100-dollars. The average local family will spend nearly $700 to stock up for the school year.
by Deirdre Blake posted Jul 30 2014 9:07AM
Many of you lined the streets of Stafford to honor the life of Marine Staff Sergeant David Stewart, who was killed in Afghanistan last month.
Now this Friday a group of college students will hold a 24 hour relay at Sport and Health to help his family. The dozen teams, up to 60 people, will trade off riding a stationary bike from 7 p.m. Friday to 7 p.m. Saturday. You can come cheer them on and donate there or on-line at
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by Raphael Okure posted Jul 30 2014 9:02AM

If you've lived here for a long time, you might not remember the big building at 900 Princess Anne Street being anything but a National Bank and now a PNC branch, but that's about to change.
That PNC branch will close at 3 p.m. on November 21st and be consolidated with the Chatham office on Chatham Heights Road, less than a mile away. U.S. President Abraham Lincoln and Confederate President Jefferson Davis both visited the building during the Civil War, as paintings in its lobby show customers.
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Topics : War_Conflict
by Deirdre Blake posted Jul 30 2014 8:48AM

Still planning a summer getaway? Some Apps for your smartphone or tablet can help you.
Personal Finance experts with TheStreet say if you're headed to a foreign country, the Google Translate app helps you communicate. TripAdvisor helps find hotels, flights, restaurants and rentals. And Expensify lets you track your receipts and bank accounts to stay on budget.
by Deirdre Blake posted Jul 30 2014 8:26AM
Crowds came out to the Fredericksburg Fairgrounds to get wowed by the King BMX Stunt Show last night. The former America's Got Talent team, that placed 48 on that show, soared through the air here at the fair. It was also dollar ride ticket night and runs through this weekend. Get the daily schedule at
by Deirdre Blake posted Jul 25 2014 11:28AM
If you're debating on stopping to buy that scratch off lottery ticket on your way home from work, this story might make the decision for you.
 Carl Johnson of Caroline County is $100,000 richer after he stopped and bought a winning $5 crossword ticket at the Lafayette Gulf, on Lafayette Boulevard, in Fredericksburg. It was the last of the top prizes and for now, the car dealership manager doesn't have big plans for the cash. 
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Location : Caroline County
People : Carl Johnson
by Deirdre Blake posted Jul 25 2014 9:06AM

Which one sounds more tasty to you, the "Big Wolf Burger," a "pretzel bread slider" or a "Maui Wowi"? They're all names of sandwiches up to win a prize at the inaugural Fredericksburg Sandwich Inivitational next Thursday night.
It's the brainchild of the owners of Foode in Fredericksburg and kicks off ten days of summer restaurant week in the city. The event at Hurkamp Park is 25 bucks a pop on visit-fred-dot-com, but get em' fast. They're only selling 250.
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by Deirdre Blake posted Jul 25 2014 9:05AM
Do you already have kids, but have another one on the way and you're worried about how they'll adjust?
Spotsy Regional Medical Center is stepping in to help with a sibling Class at :00 a.m. tomorrow, for kids ages two through nine. They'll hear about what a new baby will mean in their house and make a big brother/big sister craft to take home. It's free to attend and the classes are usually held once a month. 
by Deirdre Blake posted Jul 25 2014 9:04AM
 Even if you're not planning to run the Marine Corps Marathon this October, you can still be involved.
Its' making a call for volunteers to help with everything from packet pick-up and manning water stations to people helping out that have skills like massage and medical training. You could volunteer anytime from October 23rd until the 26th. Sign up at
by Deirdre Blake posted Jul 25 2014 9:03AM
If you want to run for a good cause, but think you're not in good enough shape, a local doctor is here to help. Dr. Daniel Gray of Pratt Medical Center is hosting a free eight week "Couch to 5K" program.
It's in preparation for the ninth annual Baron "Deuce" P. Braswell Run Against Teen Violence on September 20th. The training will be every Tuesday and Thursday at 6:30 p.m. at the Spotsylvania Regional Medical Center's main entrance.
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Topics : Social Issues
People : Daniel Gray
by Deirdre Blake posted Jul 25 2014 9:02AM
You never know when your kids can be put in a dangerous position.
A former employee at a boarding school in Caroline County is charged with 13 counts of child endangerment. Caroline County Sheriff Tony Lippa says 13 male students of Abundant Life Academy were forced to do drills in a swamp in 35-degree weather, then made to wash off in a lake. Many of them got sick as a result.
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Topics : Law_Crime
Location : Caroline County
People : Tony Lippa
by Deirdre Blake posted Jul 25 2014 9:00AM
It looks like tornadoes are continuing to become more of a reality here in Virginia. 
The National Weather Service confirmed that an EF-1 tornado touched down at Cherrystone Family Camping & RV Resort in rural Northampton County yesterday morning. State Police say that it killed a New Jersey couple and more than two dozen were hurt.
Virginia Gov. Terry McAuliffe has cut a political fundraising trip short tp go see the damage the tornado did yesterday. More than 13-hundred people were at the campground in tents, campers and cottages when the storm hit, knocking down trees and flipping over some campers.
One woman says the sky turned jet black and hail that was as big as an inch was falling. 
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by Deirdre Blake posted Jul 25 2014 8:57AM
A summer time tradition in are gets under way today. The 276th annual Fredericksburg Agricultural Fair kicks at 5:00 tonight at the fairgrounds on Airport Ave.
There's lots of stuff to do for all ages from farm animals, food and rides to a bunch of new entertainment. The King BMX Stunt Show from America's Got Talent performs Monday and Tuesday nights. It runs for 10 days straight and you can get more at
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by Deirdre Blake posted Jul 25 2014 8:56AM
Some reconstruction of the Metrorail system continues this weekend, but the biggest changes on the ride, if you're taking in DC as a tourist, will be on the Red Line.
It starts at 10 tonight and runs through Sunday. Service on the new Silver Line also starts tomorrow at noon, so be ready for changes on the Blue Line from it and some longer waits between scheduled trains. 
by Deirdre Blake posted Jul 25 2014 8:55AM
If you love horses and history, the Meadow Event Park in Caroline is the place to be tomorrow and early Sunday.
It's hosting a historic family reunion of equestrian descendants of the Meadow. The Thoroughbred Heritage Horse Show will bring in 51 horses that are related to the famed racehorse Secretariat. A special ceremony is at 12:30 p.m. tomorrow. The show is free and open to the public.
by Deirdre Blake posted Jul 25 2014 8:54AM
 The first formal debate of the campaign season is this Saturday morning at the Greenbrier Resort in West Virginia.
The Virginia Bar Association invited Democratic Incumbent Senator Mark Warner to face off against Republican challenger Ed Gillespie. Libertarian Robert Sarvis won't be there, since the VBA's president says he doesn't meet its' criteria for invitations.
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Topics : Politics
Location : West Virginia
by Deirdre Blake posted Jul 25 2014 8:53AM
 A northern Virginia Congressman is standing up for the rights of animals and wants to have cosmetics being tested on them banned.
More than 50 other lawmakers are joining Jim Moran of Arlington on the Humane Cosmetics Act. It would phase out animal testing for makeup in the U.S. within a year, and on what's imported within three years.
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People : Jim MoranStands Up
by Deirdre Blake posted Jul 24 2014 9:26AM
Hopefully you already saw the letter, but if you're a Dominion Virginia Power customer in King George, don't expect to blow dry your hair after a shower this Saturday morning and afternoon.
Its' crews will be doing work on some local distribution facilities and have to cut the electricity from 7:00 a.m. until 3:00 p.m. In case the schedule changes, make sure your acount info's current so they can call you.
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by Deirdre Blake posted Jul 24 2014 9:23AM

Summer travel has left the American Red Cross in a tough spot and it's got a looming blood and platlet shortage, already with 80,000 fewer recent donations.
Types O negative, B negative and A negative blood are especially needed. There's a drive next Tuesday at the Spotsy Regional Medical Center and then at several regional businesses and churches through August 10th. Get the whole list at
by Deirdre Blake posted Jul 24 2014 9:20AM

Summer heat and traffic can make tempers flare, but take a moment to  calm down, especially when you're driving.
Fredericksburg cops are dealing with another case of road rage. This time a Unionville man is arrested in Central Park after he cut off the car of a Stafford driver, then got behind it and ended up waving a gun at the man and his girlfriend. He also had two small kids in the back seat.
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Location : Unionville
by Deirdre Blake posted Jul 24 2014 9:18AM
If you buy tickets to ride VRE from the 7-11 at the intersection of Leeland and Deacon Roads in Stafford, today's the last day to get them there.
The business has been sold, so starting tomorrow the vendor spot will stop selling the tickets. VRE officials say they are trying to work with the new owner and looking for another nearby convenient store. Until then, a list of other Fredericksburg line vendors is on 
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by Deirdre Blake posted Jul 24 2014 9:17AM
The design for Riverfront Park in Fredericksburg, on Sophia Street,  includes a tall mast that leans toward the Rappahannock River.
Some are saying it reminds them of the National Museum of the Marine Corps in Prince William. An Alexandria-based group is designing the concept for the 3.6 acres park. They will meet with the city's Architectural Review Board at a work session on August 4th. 
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Location : Alexandria
People : William
by Deirdre Blake posted Jul 24 2014 9:16AM
If you live on work around the area of Dukes Creek marina, in the Lake Anna area, you could hear some odd noises again today. County officials say a film crew on site there will be responsible. You may hear what sounds like gunfire in the area from 8:00 a.m. until 6:00 p.m.
by Deirdre Blake posted Jul 24 2014 9:14AM
 Before you hit the road for summer travel, make sure you know all the safety seat laws for kids in Virginia and neighboring states, even if you're just a family member and they're not your kids.
If you rent a car and can't bring a car seat with you, you can usually rent one from the company too. In Virginia, kids under a year 1 have to be in a rear facing infant seat, from one to eight, they need a child safety seat or booster seat and until they're 18, they all have to sit in the back seat.
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People : Know Virginia
by Deirdre Blake posted Jul 24 2014 9:14AM
Good news you use the crowded Staffordboro commuter lot. The project to double its' size and add a thousand parking spaces there is almost done, but it means changes by the end of this week. At 7 Thursday night, one 130 spot area closes and a new 280 space one opens. Slow down, be careful and look for lots of signs on the new traffic pattern. 
by Deirdre Blake posted Jul 24 2014 9:13AM
All the recent scams reported should be a reminder to keep your personal information close and check your mail every day.
That information may be what helped a Spotsylvania woman open credit card accounts in three other local women's names. Cops traced a paper trail and a po box back to the woman and found the bogus cards in a safe and mail from 20 area residents in her house. She'd already been charged with embezzelment from her old job at Wells Fargo Bank.
by Deirdre Blake posted Jul 24 2014 9:11AM

Most of us know to check the Carfax report, especially if we buy a used model. Now the company's making it easier to know if it's been involved in wrecks.
The car re-seller can now get accident reports from police departments across the U.S. Carfax says in many cases, the reports now available through Crash-docs-dot-org are sold at the same price charged if you get them in person at the police station.
by Deirdre Blake posted Jul 24 2014 9:08AM
Police have now found a gun in the car of a man from Fauquier that sped away from a deputy and flipped over on Route 17, and died at a hospital.
Doctors found the gunshot wound after he was taken to the hospital. While cops were looking for the gun at the crash scene, another man slammed into the cruiser. He's facing DUI and other charges. 
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by Deirdre Blake posted Jul 23 2014 10:33AM

Are you into craft beer and music? You can try some out and take some in at a festival at the Blue & Gray Brewing Company in Fredericksburg this Saturday.
Doors open at 6 p.m. and the concert will begin at 7 p.m. The bands range from The Pietasters soul roots and reggae to bluegrass and country. On-line tickets are 15 bucks through today, they're 18 at the door. 
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by Deirdre Blake posted Jul 23 2014 10:32AM

A new memorial is rising near the National Mall that will be the first in Washington dedicated to veterans who come home with life-changing injuries.
The American Veterans Disabled For Life Memorial is set to be dedicated October 5th. Glass walls will carry inscriptions and photos. Bronze silhouette sculptures will represent their service and a ceremonial flame will burn on the water's surface. 
by Deirdre Blake posted Jul 23 2014 10:31AM

If you live in Colonial Beach, hopefully you already got the word to boil your water before you drink it.
It comes after a routine test at a home on July 8th tested positive for E-coli that could now affect about 25-hundred homes. The town is flushing pipes and adding more chlorine, before taking more samples. E. coli's an indicator the water could be contaminated with human or animal wastes.
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Location : Colonial Beach
by Deirdre Blake posted Jul 23 2014 10:29AM

When you see a black Dodge Dakota parked around the area with writing all over it, it's not a mistake, but the owner's idea, after a deer hit the side of the truck.
When Bowling Green resident and Physicist Jason Phillips got a quote to fix it, he decided to paint it with chalkboard paint and leave out chalk for people to write on it as a social experiment. So far he says, there's not been one bad word, just things like "Carpe diem," "Inspire," "Give back" or "Live Long and Prosper." 
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People : Jason Phillips
by Deirdre Blake posted Jul 23 2014 10:27AM
Have you wondered how much Stafford has really grown when you sit in traffic around the area?
The answer is alot and the proof's in lawmakers agreeing that the county will need to invest in a sixth high school. Expansions are already planned at Brooke Point, Mountain View and Colonial Forge high, that will each get about 200 more students by 2019.
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Topics : Education
Location : Mountain View
by Deirdre Blake posted Jul 23 2014 10:26AM

Are you already wondering if it's worth it to drive on the new tolled express lanes when they open and how much more your commute will set you back?
You can already check the average price to travel before they open or before you get on the road next year. Price Alerts are available now by setting up an on-line account, then you can get the info by e-mail or a text. Just log onto 
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