The Piedmont Virginian's Blog

Serving and Celebrating America's Historic Heart

Category: Greene County (page 2 of 3)

Don’t Miss: The Garden Club of Virginia’s Annual Conservation Forum

Garden Club of Virginia, Conservation ForumOn November 6, 2009, The Garden Club of Virginia will hold its 51st Annual Conservation Forum at the University of Virginia’s Darden School of Business in Charlottesville. Open to the public (with a $16 registration fee, students are free), the forum addresses the critical issues facing Virginia’s community and environment today: sustainability, land use, urban design, housing, transportation and economic development. They’ve assembled a star line-up of speakers who will offer a vision for an environmentally sustainable and economically competitive Commonwealth of Virginia.

Stewart Schwartz, Executive Director of the Coalition for Smarter Growth
Speakers: Rachel Flynn, Director of Community Development who led the creative development of Richmond’s new Downtown Master Plan; Chris Miller, President of the Piedmont Environmental Council; Larry Schweiger, President and Chief Executive Officer of National Wildlife Federation.

Advance registration is required.

Historic Garden Week in Virginia

We’ve been anticipating this spring event for months! As detailed in the latest issue of The Piedmont Virginian (on newsstands now!), the Garden Club of Virginia has worked hard for over 75 years to restore historic sites and gardens across the state– including the gardens at Montpelier Estate and Morven Park. These historic landscapes flourish across the Piedmont, and Historic Garden Week provides an opportunity for guests to “step through the gates of more than 250 of Virginia’s most beautiful gardens, homes and historic landmarks.” Taking place from April 18-25, “America’s Largest Open House” provides a glimpse into Virginia’s finest properties during their springtime best, when everything is in colorful bloom. For house and garden tours in your area, check in with your local garden club, as the GCV is an association of 47 different area clubs.

Conservation Stories from the Piedmont Environmental Council

Virginia’s Piedmont achieved major conservation milestones in 2008, and we applaud the PEC for its important work. Below you’ll find some important snippets from the PEC’s latest newsletter- The Conservation Edition. Sign up for the PEC’s excellent, free newsletters— choose your preferences– and you can stay informed on the topics that matter to you:

300,000+ Acres of Land Protected

The Piedmont achieved a major conservation milestone in 2008, as the total amount of land protected by conservation easements crossed the 300,000 acre mark. Last year, Piedmont landowners permanently protected more than 14,000 acres of land, which brings the total to nearly 307,500 acres. That comes to 14% of the total land, in addition to public lands, which comprise another 4%.

Three Civil War Battlefields

As the 150th anniversary of the Civil War begins, private land conservation has protected 12,000 acres of battlefields in the Piedmont, including portions of three battlefields in 2008: Aldie, Brandy Station and Rappahannock Station. In the summer of 1863, Gen. Lee’s army was marching up the Shenandoah Valley, on its way to Gettysburg. On the other side of the Blue Ridge, in Loudoun County, Union and Confederate troops fought over roads that led to gaps in the mountains. If the federal troops could cross those gaps, they could attack Lee’s army.

2,700 Acres in Madison County

When floodwaters severed the road into the Graves Mill valley in 1995, Keith Wagner was stranded on the other side with his five-year-old son-separated from the rest of his family and from the 1,500 acre farm that he was responsible for managing. Because of Shenandoah National Park, the roads through Graves Mill don’t connect to other roads. The main road and its offshoots trace the river valley, climb a short way up the slopes of the mountains and end, at the forest’s edge. Other people in Mr. Wagner’s situation hiked in over Blakey Ridge, but Mr. Wagner, who was recovering from a badly broken leg, couldn’t do that.

Muskrat Haven and Sunnyside Farms

Two Rappahannock farms that are prominent producers of local food were protected by conservation easements in 2008. Manfred Call went through the county’s Purchase of Development Rights program to protect Muskrat Haven Farm while Nick and Gardiner Lapham donated a conservation easement on Sunnyside Farm to the Virginia Outdoors Foundation. “I think everybody has a responsibility to steward their land,” says Mr. Call.

Consider Yourself our Mate, Oliver Opens at Four County Players

Four County Players has announced its upcoming spring musical production: Lionel Bart’s Oliver!, based on the classic Charles Dickens novel Oliver Twist. The Four County Players will have ten performances in March. Follow Oliver from a workhouse through the tougher streets of London, and finally to the safe arms of long lost family. Along the way, he meets a host of exciting, dancing, and singing characters. Four County audiences first saw Oliver! on their stage in 1975, and now such well-known songs as “Food, Glorious Food,” “Where is Love?,” “Who Will Buy?,” and “Consider Yourself” will return to delight local audiences.
The 2009 production of Oliver! will be directed by Joncey Boggs, with musical direction by Greg Harris. Peter Balcke plays the title role, with Geri Carlson Sauls as
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Nancy, Francis Deane as Fagin, and Madison Probst as the Artful Dodger. Oliver! will run March 6 through 21 at the Barboursville Community Center, home of Four County Players. Friday and Saturday performances are at 8pm, with Saturday and Sunday matinee performances beginning at 2:30pm. Tickets are $14 for adults, $12 for seniors and students, and $10 for children under age ten. All tickets for Friday performances are $5 each. Tickets are available now by calling the Four County box office at 540-832-5355.

Photo Captions: Oliver (Peter Balcke), Dodger (Madison Probst), and Fagin (Francis Deane) meet and confer.

What’s On: Farm and Food Expo, Virginia Organic Producers’ and Consumers’ Assn

Get ready for a “cornucopia experience.” We’re headed to the Farm and Food Expo in Winchester this weekend- and we can hardly wait. There will be over 50 exhibitors representing local farms, ag agencies, farmers markets, seed and tool companies, food nutritionists, conservationists… Bravo to the Virginia Organic Producers’ and Consumers’ Assocation for organizing a fabulous, free event that the whole family will enjoy.

Sunday, November 2, 1 p.m.- 7 p.m; ZeroPak Warehouse, 580 N. Cameron Street, Winchester

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