Sen. Kaine leads economic development roundtable


Sen. Tim Kaine speaking at the Stafford Economic Development Authority roundtable April 8. Also present were Stafford County supervisors Jack Cavalier (left) and Laura Sellers (right).  [KJ Mushung/Stafford Local News]

Sen. Tim Kaine speaking at the Stafford Economic Development Authority roundtable April 8. Also present were Stafford County supervisors Jack Cavalier (left) and Laura Sellers (right).
[KJ Mushung/Stafford Local News]

U.S. Sen. Tim Kaine paid a visit to Stafford County, where he led a roundtable discussion at the Stafford Economic Development Authority on April 8. More than a dozen business and political leaders were present, including Stafford County supervisors Jack Cavalier (Griffis-Widewater) and Laura Sellers (Garrisonville).

The group touched on many different topics, but the need to fund cyber-security initiatives and the effect of BRAC got much of the attention. 

BRAC stands for base realignment and closure. According to the U.S. Department of Defense website, BRAC is “the congressionally authorized process [the DOD] has used to reorganize its base structure to more efficiently and effectively support [U.S.] forces, increase operational readiness and facilitate new ways of doing business.”

Kaine said: “BRACs are obviously very tough. I mean, nobody wants to contemplate dramatic scale-downs of infrastructure when they’re such significant job creators, economic centers of gravity for communities where a military installation is [located]. At the same time, the defense budget Priority One is not a job creator. Priority One is national defense. And if you spend more on installations than you need to, then you’re spending less on something else [like cyber-security].”

Sen. Tim Kaine speaking at the Stafford Economic Development Authority roundtable April 8. Pictured on the left of Kaine is Stafford County Supervisor Jack Cavalier and Gabe Patricio of Patricio Enterprises.  [KJ Mushung/Stafford Local News]

Sen. Tim Kaine speaking at the Stafford Economic Development Authority roundtable April 8. Pictured on the left of Kaine is Stafford County Supervisor Jack Cavalier and Gabe Patricio of Patricio Enterprises.
[KJ Mushung/Stafford Local News]

“I’m not sure the BRAC process is really the best way to come at the rationalization of physical infrastructure,” he added.

Past base closures didn’t save money, they cost money, said Kaine. He told roundtable that the Pentagon claimed BRACs that didn’t save money weren’t done efficiently. And when a BRAC is announced, every community hires attorneys and lobbyists to try and protect what they have, even in communities where the installation is not at risk. It becomes a massive check to the lobbyists and lawyers, said Kaine.

“You’re never out of the woods if you have an installation in your community.”

Sen. Tim Kaine speaking at the Stafford Economic Development Authority roundtable April 8, 2015.  [KJ Mushung/Stafford Local News]

Sen. Tim Kaine speaking at the Stafford Economic Development Authority roundtable April 8, 2015.
[KJ Mushung/Stafford Local News]

Also present at the meeting were Stafford EDA Chairman Joel Griffin, Curry Roberts, Howard Owen, George Judd, Patrick J. Gallagher, Ken Fried, Gen. E. Gray Payne, Rich Sackette, Suzanne Milem, Martin Arase, Cristina R. Barnes, Kent Farmer, Mark Kavanaugh, Ken Farquhar, Gabe Patricio, Joshua Kovacs, Jeff Speights, Shannon Howell, Sarah Kirkpatrick, and M.C. Moncure.

Photo contest honors historic local resource

Joy Cox's winning entry in the photo contest.

Joy Cox’s winning entry in the photo contest.

The first ever Government Island photo contest, called “Picturing Government Island,” just concluded. The contest, run by Tour Stafford Virginia via their Facebook page, features five winners.

The photo contest was judged by photographer Buddy Secor of Ninja Pix and historian Jane Conner, who is the author of book about Government Island called “Birthstone of the White House and Capitol.”

Stones from an old quarry that used to be on the small island inside Aquia Harbour in Stafford, Virginia, were used to build the White House and Capitol. Government Island is now a park with hiking trails.

Maria Cannata's winning entry.

Maria Cannata’s winning entry.

Maria Cannata received Honorable Mention in the Nature and Landscape category and will receive a copy of Jane Conner’s book.

Laura Stoffel's winning entry.

Laura Stoffel’s winning entry.

Laura Stoffel received Honorable Mention in the People category and will also receive a copy of Jane Conner’s book.

Joy Cox received Honorable Mention in the Animals category. She, too, will receive a copy of Jane Conner’s book.

An entry by Alyssa Douglas.

An entry by Alyssa Douglas.

The Fan Favorite, with 346 votes, is Alyssa Douglas. She won a $50 gift certificate to Zibibbo 73 Trattoria Italiana & Bar.

The Grand Prize Winner and recipient of a $50 gift certificate to Zibibbo 73 Trattoria Italiana & Bar is Brant Stevenson.

Brant Stevenson's grand prize-winning photo.

Brant Stevenson’s grand prize-winning photo.

CVTV public access network to partner with Dragon Talent

CVTV and CVTV Kids are proud to announce their latest partnership! Dragon Talent & Performance Coaching will bring over twenty years’ experience nurturing young, professional and pre-professional theatrical talent to the Fredericksburg area.

Want to work in theatre and television? How about one of CVTV Kids exciting new shows?

Located at the heart of the new CVTV studios in Fredericksburg VA, Dragon Talent & Performance Coaching is poised to assist with training young, emerging talent entering the commercial and theatrical professions.

Get on the list for Summer Camp and Fall Sessions. Contact Jennifer Gregory before end April 2015.


Manassas Airshow Bringing in the Big Jets

The Manassas Airshow is bringing in Breitling Jet Team
The Manassas Airshow will take place Saturday, May 2.
This is the flattest run in the area, on the runway.
The 3rd Dimension Parachute Team.

On May 2, 2015, from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. the Manassas Airshow is bringing in Breitling Jet Team, the largest professional civilian flight jet team. This team demonstrates aerobatics with precision, speed, mastery and style. The Breitling Team coordinates a meticulous ballet in which planes sometimes fly within three meters of each other at speeds of over 700 kilometers  per hour.

They are really a sight to see and the event is free to the public. 

Also performing this year are the 3rd Dimension Parachute Team, the American Helicopters Demonstration Team, Andrew McKenna P-51 and T-6 Aerobatics, the Flying Circus Stearman Flight, Scott Francis MXS Aerobatics, Jack Knutson Extra 300 Aerobatics, Matt Chapman CAP 580 Aerobatics, Randy Devere CJ-6 Aerobatics and there will be an RC Modeler Jet Demonstration. Along with these performers, the Manassas Airshow offers aircraft displays, military re-enactors and much more.

Also at the Manassas Regional Airport on April 26 at 7:30 a.m. runners will be getting ready to race the Manassas Runway 10K/5K presented by the Bull Run and Manassas Rotary Clubs. This is the flattest run in the area, being held on the actual runway.

The Texas Raiders B-17 will be at the Manassas Regional Airport from May 3 to 6 offering rides on their B-17, which is one of only eleven B-17 flying fortresses still flying today. On May 8 from noon to 1 p.m. 15 historically sequenced warbird formations will participate in the World War II Victory Capitol Flyover in honor of the 70th Anniversary of Victory in Europe (VE) Day. While several of these majestic warbirds are visiting the Manassas Regional Airport, they will be giving tours, May 9-10 from 9 a.m. to 5 p.m.

For more information on any of these events, visit

‘Wings Pizza N Things’ opens at George Mason University


Students at George Mason University’s Beacon Hall have a new dining option.

Wings Pizza N Things will hold a ribbon cutting ceremony at 4 p.m. Friday, April 2, 2015. The new restaurant joins a Subway restaurant located on the ground floor of a new residence at the Prince William Campus, or soon to be known as Science and Technology Campus of George Mason University just outside Manassas.

Novant Health also plans to open a Bull Run Medicine inside the ground-level retail area near the new restaurant.

Special discounts will be offered following a ribbon cutting ceremony that will feature locally elected officials, according to a press release. The restaurant is a sports bar and grill that serves up American food, according to the release.

Beacon Hall sits across from the Hylton Performing Arts Center. It’s dubbed a mixed-use development center that has student housing, educational space, as well as spaces for additional retail stores.

In all, the 105,000 square foot facility provides 152 beds for students enrolled in the university’s medical education program, according to the release.

Constructional Beacon Hall was completed in 2012, the release stated.

Arts Alive festival coming to Hylton Center May 2

Arts Alive! 2015, a co-production of the Prince William County Arts Council and the Hylton Performing Arts Center in Manassas, is a free, family-fun arts festival on Saturday, May 2, 2015 from 12 p.m. to 4 p.m. at the Hylton Center.

This highly-anticipated annual community event celebrates the diversity and talent of visual and performing artists and ensembles from Prince William County and the City of Manassas, and also offers hands-on arts-related activities for children and adults, as well as food and craft vendors with items for sale. Admission and parking to the event are FREE. Arts Alive! 2015 Sponsors are United Bank and NOVEC.

This exciting afternoon will feature 32 indoor and outdoor performances occurring on four stages: Merchant Hall, Gregory Family Theater and the Buchanan Partners Art Gallery inside the Hylton Center, and on the Showmobile outside of the building. Local artists and ensembles performing include Old Bridge Chamber Orchestra, Magnificent Belly Dance, Dumfries Elementary School Chorus, New Dominion Choraliers, scholarship winners from the Woodbridge Music Club, the Church Street Singers, Fools! Improv and much more. There will also be strolling performers from the Bull Run Unitarian Universalists Mime Troupe and Pied Piper Children’s Theatre.

Visual arts groups participating include the Manassas Warrenton Camera Club, Stone House Quilters and the Prince William Art Society. Activities for children include watercolor painting with Edgemoor Art Studio, face painting and a children’s story corner. Local artisans will sell their diverse wares, including jewelry, pottery, quilts and photography. Write by the Rails, the Prince William Chapter of the Virginia Writers Club, will sell books by local authors.

Arts Alive! 2015 will be held at the Hylton Performing Arts Center on the Prince William Campus of George Mason University at 10960 George Mason Circle, Manassas, Va. 20110. Free parking is available in the lot next to the Hylton Center. Additional information about Arts Alive! 2015 is available at or


Pets to adopt at Stafford County SPCA

Willy went missing from his home.


BC is an 11 month old DSH cat that is UTD on shots and neutered. He has a huge personality and gets along very well with the other cats in his room. He enjoys interacting with volunteers and is a silly, curious boy. He is by far our favorite goofball!


Rose is a 1 year old Jack Russell Terrier/Pomeranian mix that is UTD on shots, spayed, and microchipped. Rose is a bit quieter than her brothers and sisters and is usually the first one in your lap if given a chance to cuddle. If you’re looking for a cuddle bug this is your girl!

Lost dog

Willy – LOST DOG – Last seen 3/26 at 12 PM. Just a year old, blue collar, name tag, rabies tag, county tag and is micro-chipped. If you see him, PLEASE call 703-899-0604.

-Information provided by the Stafford SPCA. Contact them for more information on any of the animals shown above.

Easter egg hunt starts Dumfries spring events series

042111 Around Town

An annual Easter Egg hunt will take place Saturday in Dumfries.

The Dumfries-Triangle Rescue Squad purchased Easter Eggs purchased eggs to be hidden at Ginn Memorial Park on Graham Park Road. The event begins at 11 a.m.

Pillar Church in Dumfries will provide a children’s bounce house, as well as volunteers to run family games at the Easter event. The church will also provide an Easter Bunny suit to be worn by Dumfries Parks and Recreation Committee member Matthew Critchley.

Face Odyssey will also be on hand to paint childrens’ faces, according to Dumfries Community Services Director Ryan Gandy.

Easter is the following day, Sunday, April 5.

The following Saturday on April 11, volunteers will gather in Dumfries for the annual Quantico Creek Clean Up. Coffee, bagels, and donuts will be served starting at 8 a.m. at Town Hall while participating volunteers are registered for the event, according to Public Works Director Richard West.

The clean up will take place from 9 a.m. to noon. Lunch will be served after the clean up ends, and volunteers will tally up the amount of garbage collected, said West.

Community Services Director Ryan Gandy is also organizing the town’s Multicultural Festival. It is slated to take place May 9 at 11 a.m. at Merchant Park, next to the Weems-Botts Museum.

Gandy said this year’s event will focus more on celebrating the ethnic heritage of many cultures and less on vendors selling products and services. 

“I am part of the organizing committee, and last year someone came to me and said that [last year’s multicultural festival] wasn’t a multicultural festival,” said Vice Mayor Willie Toney. “We were wondering if we should even continue with that name. The intent was to have a multicultural event to have different people, different food.”

Toney told Gandy he was pleased that this year’s festival will focus more on celebrating diversity in the community.

“I looked back last year on what it became it wasn’t really a multicultural festival,” added Gandy.

Festival goers should expect displays on native and African-African American life as it pertains to the early days of the Town of Dumfries, provided by Historic Dumfries, Inc. Gandy also contacted several food vendors that would “provide cuisine of their native lands,” said Gandy. The details of which food vendors will participate are still being worked out.

The festival is free to attend.


Manassas celebrates Founders’ Day on First Friday, April 3

Manassas, virginia, city, visit

When you say the words “Founders’ Day” it brings back images of a kinder, gentler time when people shared stories on front porches. The City of Manassas is celebrating Founders’ Day on First Friday, April 3, with restaurant specials, shops staying open late and, of course, birthday cake.

Stores and restaurants will be focusing on the history of the city and the buildings they inhabit.

This celebration is the brainchild of Councilman Ian Lovejoy. He was curious about the actual date the town was founded and in researching that date, found that the City was recognized as a town on April 2, 1873 by the General Assembly. The area was known as Tudor Hall, prior to that, until William S. Fewell, who owned the land, laid out the first six blocks and began selling lots.

The first official council meeting was held on May 17, 1873. Due to the town’s growth over the years, the town submitted a request to the General Assembly and in 1975 officially became the City of Manassas. From humble beginnings in 1873 as a half mile town concentrated along the railroad tracks, the City of Manassas grew to 10 square miles of homes, schools, shops and restaurants and more than 40,000 residents.

This Founders’ Day, come celebrate with the City of Manassas in Historic Downtown from 6 to 9 p.m. The Manassas Museum will host a City of Manassas trivia contest and a book signing. Love, Charley will offer cake, The Bone will have a beer garden and City Square Café is offering a three course dinner special and encouraging diners to dress in period attire. These are just a few of the offerings for First Friday. For more offerings and information, visit

Davis named dean for arts at George Mason University

rick davis

Rick Davis, the long-time Executive Director for the Hylton Performing Arts Center in Manassas, has been named as the new Dean for George Mason University’s College of Visual and Performing Arts.

Davis, who has been working with the university since 1992, will be in charge of overseeing seven academic programs and two performing arts centers in his new role.

“I have worked on both academic, and non-academic fronts…I’ve had about five different [roles] at the University. The first was running our theater company, and chairing the theater department. And then I became interim director of the Institute of the Arts, which is a predecessor to the college that we now have. Then artistic director for our Center of the Arts in Fairfax, and then Associate Provost for Undergraduate Education, and then I came to the Hylton [Performing Arts] Center in 2011,” said Davis.

The appointment comes after the current dean, Bill Reeder, decided to retire from the position.

“[The current dean] is retiring as Dean, although he’s staying on at George Mason as a faculty member in our management – which we’re very happy about…there was a nation search, that basically took from September till just now…I’m very honored and humbled to be the appointee,” said Davis.

While Davis is excited to get started as dean, he is no rush to transition a successor to the Hylton Center.

“We’re going to take our time and plan for an orderly succession at the Hylton. We don’t know what shape that will take – but I intend to remain in place at the Hylton for a while, because we currently have so many irons in the fire – so many things underway. I don’t see stepping away from that abruptly,” Davis commented.

According to Davis, his work over the years at the university, specifically as executive director at the Hylton Center has primed him for working as a dean.

“I think that my role at the Hylton has been to be a very public advocate for the arts as a whole, and for our work in the community. And I think that’s a good training ground for being a dean – you have to represent accurately and enthusiastically a whole range of art forms. And you have to be comfortable working across political spectrums, and fundraising and the community and all of those things are valuable in the toolkit of a dean,” said Davis.

There has been no announced start date for Davis to take up his new post at George Mason University as of yet. The Hylton Center announced their newest season lineup of performances last week.

Pets to adopt at Stafford County SPCA

Billie Jane
Lost dog - Anya
Spice is a female DSH cat that is UTD on shots and spayed. She is a spunky girl that enjoys ear scratches and laser pointers! She is included in our Shamrock Special throughout March – could you be her lucky charm?
Billie Jane is a 2 year old female Heeler mix that is spayed, UTD on shots, and microchipped. She was rescued in Florida by our Director of Operations while visiting family. She pulled at our heartstrings with her well behaved demeanor and playful nature. Billie Jane can live happily with other dogs (with proper introduction) and children older than 5 years.
LOST DOG – Anya, missing since 8 PM on 3/13. She was last seen wearing a black, leather, studded collar off of RT 17 in Stafford. Please call 540-455-3126 if found.

-Information provided by the Stafford SPCA. Contact them for more information on any of the animals shown above.

21 honored at Prince William Chamber Valor Awards

Prince William police Officers Michael Szalach and Robert Minnick pulled 3 from a burning vehicle.
Prince William police Officers Stanley Korson and Nathaniel Probus apprehending a violent fugitive.
Prince William Animal Control Sgt. Lorie Newsome and Aminal Control Officer Jessica Wilfong Shiflett worked a case that led to 58 charges of animal cruelty filed.
The Prince William Chamber honored public safety workers at the annual Valor Awards.

The Prince William Chamber of Commerce presented the 29th annual Prince William Valor Awards.  The awards intend to honor the fire rescue and police in the region’s three jurisdictions – Prince William County, Manassas, and Manassas Park. 

Prince William Chamber of Commerce President Debbie Jones said that a thriving community depends on the people laying down their lives to protect it.

“They truly just make the county a better place, with a higher quality of life,” she said.

Jones said that many of the people at the Valor awards were business owners who wanted the chance to thank police and firefighters for their service. 

 “They are making a better place to raise a family and have a business,” said Jones.

 Jones said that they’re looking into increasing the size of the venue so that more businesses can come and show their support.

Eric Tatum of Dominion Virginia Power was the “quality of life vision” partner. 

“It is an honor to be one of the sponsors for this event.  We thank you for running towards trouble and not away from it,” Tatum said at the event. 

The presentation was narrated by voiceover artist Noelle Stanley, who presented each award by telling the stories of each firefighter and policeman who were receiving awards. 

Twenty one men and women were awarded Valor awards for their services, which included anything from investigating and solving murders, to putting out life-threatening fires while off duty. 

Stephen Porter of the Sentara Northern Virginia Medical Center was the master of ceremonies and described those receiving awards as being remarkable and selfless. 

 “Through these awards we celebrate the men and women who protect us with their acts of valor while many of them will say they are just doing their jobs,” said Porter.

‘Friends’ of Hylton Center, press, gather for season announcement

Last night, the Hylton Performing Arts Center in Manassas announced their sixth season performance lineup for 2015-2016 to patrons and the press.

The announcement included several acts in their Hylton Family Series, like ventriloquist Kevin Johnson, their Hylton Presents performances, such as The Midtown Men, and a slew of Matinee Idylls, including the Echos Chamber Choir.

According to Rick Davis, Executive Director of the Hylton Center, the announcement event has doubled in size from last year.

“By the end of our current year in June, well over 100,000 people will have taken advantage of the Center’s amazing capabilities, whether as an audience member for a great concert, a performer in a play, a guest at an art gallery reception, a business person or civic leader at a meeting, or a happy bride and groom,” said Davis in a release.

The Hylton Center has also recently garnered national attention, after a popular country group, Dailey & Vincent, filmed a performance on-site. The taping of the performance has since been released nationally by PBS and is being seen in homes across the United States.

During the event, members of the Hylton Center staff stated that residents can now subscribe, purchase tickets and manage their purchases at the Hylton Center all online.

When Potomac Local spoke to patrons, they stated that they were happy that a high-quality arts venue was so close to home.

“There’s selection and variety…and because they have such a diverse variety, we come here. Over the years, we’ve found that we can get equally good talent at either this venue or the one in Fairfax. And we can avoid the hassle of having to drive down to D.C.,” said Peter Coughlan, a Fairfax resident.

Alan Yates, a Prince William resident, said he that the value he gets from the Hylton Center performances rival well-known venues in D.C., including the Kennedy Center.

“It’s great for people to be exposed to the arts…we’ve been to many shows here, and many shows in Fairfax. And the shows are just fantastic. When you look at the price you’d pay at the Kennedy Center, this is a tremendous value for your money. A lot of people just don’t realize what’s at their doorstep,” Yates said.

Subscriptions for the Hylton Presents and Hylton Family Series go on sale today.

Manassas Restaurant Week is coming: 2-course meals for $25

restaurant, city, eat, festival

Have you been to Historic Downtown Manassas lately? Did you know there are numerous one-of-a-kind restaurants and shops?

To celebrate our culinary diversity, the Historic Manassas Restaurant Alliance is hosting Spring Restaurant Week.

What does this mean for you and me? It means that from March 22 – 28 diners can have two course meals for $25 and three course meals for $35.

Each restaurant will offer restaurant specific specials during the week as well. One-of-a-kind restaurants in the City of Manassas include Carmello’s, City Square Cafe, City Tavern, Deli Depot, El Cactus, Foster’s Grille, Ground Central Station, Katerina’s Greek, Mackey’s American Pub, Malones of Manassas, Monza, Okra’s, Old Towne Sports Pub, Philadelphia Tavern, The Bone and Zandra’s.

There’s something for every taste in the City of Manassas. This is the second Restaurant Week city restaurants have offered, the first being in September 2014. The Historic Manassas Restaurant Alliance was chartered to enhance the culinary experience of Manassas and to hold a Taste of Historic Manassas event every June and restaurant weeks in September and March.

The city’s newest restaurant, C.J. Finz is offering half a pound of shrimp or half a dozen oysters and a sandwich of your choice plus a glass of beer or wine for $25. Philadelphia Tavern is offering two Philly cheesesteaks and two microbrews for $25. Many of the restaurants are participation. To see all of the offerings during restaurant week, visit

This promoted post was written by the City of Manassas.

Secret Garden Café offers ‘gourmet comfort food’ in Occoquan


The Secret Garden Café, located in Occoquan, offers area residents a chance to relax patio-side and enjoy dishes made from scratch on the premises.

The café’s style is ‘gourmet comfort food’ according to Allison Dauksz, the café’s general manager. It was started in April 2013 by a husband and wife team that have since sold the establishment.

“It’s very quaint and comfortable. It’s a really great place…in the summertime we’ve got the patio, – it’s very romantic…Everybody likes to sit in the garden in the warm weather. The inside [of the restaurant] is an old 1800s house that has been refurbished. Lots of little nooks and crannies in the house – lots of old rooms to sit in. We have a nice old fireplace,” said Dauksz.

During the week, the Secret Garden Café offers dinner specials, and other special menus for holidays.

“We do a dinner for two special throughout the week. That is $32. Couples come, and they get a choice between three entrees, and those entrees switch every week. And they either get a starter of a cup of soup or a house salad, and then they share one of our house-made desserts,” commented Dauksz.

Additionally, the café offers a Sunday brunch. Dauksz recommended having a reservation for the brunch, as it’s a popular event at the café and tables fill quickly.

Screen Shot 2015-03-16 at 12.15.25 PMOn their menu, some of the most popular items, according to Dauksz, are their Monte Cristo sandwich, their house-made filet salad, and their take on the popular southern fare of shrimp and grits.

“We actually sell [shrimp and grits] for breakfast, lunch and dinner. It’s got a nice Cajun cream sauce with jumbo shrimp. And that’s got our homemade cheddar grit cake…it’s almost like a polenta cake where take the grits, and put cheddar cheese in them and then we pan-fry them, so it’s a little crispy on the inside and it’s got the nice warm, creamy grits in the middle. And that’s topped with our homemade corn salsa,” said Dauksz.

To give back to the community, the Secret Garden Café works with local charities and designates a day each month where they donate a portion of their profits to a charity.

“The first Friday of every month that we do, is a donation day…we pick different local charities, and 10% of our daily sales are actually donated to those local charities. [Within] these past couple of month’s we’ve done the Occoquan Historical Society, and that was really popular…and we also did some stuff with POW-MIA, and we also did Toys for Tots,” said Dauksz.

As the weather continues to warm up, it sounds like a good idea to grab a table on the patio at the Secret Garden Café and have dinner and drinks in Occoquan.

Manassas holds annual St. Patrick’s Day Parade


Manassas Fire Chief Brett Bowman and Manassas Police Chief Doug Keen. [Photo: Manassas City]
Manassas City Councilman Ian Lovejoy at Manassas St. Patrick's Day Parade.
Manassas St. Patrick's Day Parade
Prince William County Sheriff Glen Hill, Prince William Fire and Rescue Chief Kevin MgGee, and Prince William police Major Kevin Hughart [Photo: Manassas City]
Prince William County Coles District Supervisor Marty Nohe. [Photo: Manassas City]
Green on display for St. Patrick's Day
Manassas City Councilwoman Sheryl Bass. [Photo: Manassas City]
Manassas St. Patrick's Day Parade

Manassas held its annual St. Patrick’s Day Parade on Saturday.

The event took place on Center Street in the city’s Historic Downtown area. This is the 16th year the city held a St. Patrick’s Day Parade.

The U.S. Marine Corps Base Quanitco Color Guard led the parade procession, followed by parade Grand Marshal Vince Patrick.

Several elected officials from the U.S. House of Representatives, Virginia State Senate, Virginia House of Representatives, Manassas City Council, and Prince William County Board of Supervisors were present.

Prince William County Clerk of the Court Michele McQuigg marched in the parade. As did several law enforcement officials from Manassas and Prince William County.

Fire and rescue departments from Manassas and Prince William were also represented in the St. Patrick’s Day Parade.

There were also several businesses that marched in this year’s parade to include Boyle School of Dance, Dunegan Orthodontics, Flying Circus, Gastroenterology Associates, Jewelry By Design, and Chick-fil-A Signal Hill, Spotlight Dance, Gainesville Pediatric Dentistry, Bull Run Bicycles, Marais Vineyards and Winery, Laser Quest, H and R Block, Mercier School of Dance, Nokesville Horse Society, Smoothie King of Woodbridge, and Firehouse Subs.

Churches that marched in the parade included Manassas Church of the Brethren. The Hylton Performing Arts Center in Manassas also participated in the parade.

There were also students from several schools that marched in the parade to include George C. Round Elementary School, C.D. Hylton High School, and Osbourn High School, John Paul the Great Catholic High School, and Seton School.

Virginia Knights of Columbus, Virginia Ancient Odr of Hibernians in America, and Virginia Ladies Ancient Order of Hibernians also participated.

City of Winchester Pipes and Drums and City of Alexandria Pipes and Drums also participated in the parade.


‘Treasure Island’ to take Potomac High School stage


The classic tale of hunting for buried treasure is coming to Potomac Senior High School. The Panther Productions drama department is putting on “Treasure Island.”

The stage play is the story of a young boy named Jim Hawkins, who is on the hunt for buried treasure with a few cohorts.

Treasure Island is a bit of a change for the students, as they’ve been putting on fairy tales for the past few shows. Cinderella was last year’s major production.

Earlier in the year the students performed Big Bad. For this year’s production, they wanted something that would be recognizable but still had action and drama.

“It’s a lot more straight characters. With the fairy tales, you had to be imaginative. With this one, you have to be more harsh and rigid,” said Mackenzie Guenther, the assistant stage manager as well as a Potomac High School senior. 

An abundance of work goes into a production like Treasure Island. Costume designers will have to put together themed outfits by shopping at thrift stores. Sets will be made by crew members that prefer to work behind the scenes. Actors and actresses will have to take their own time to memorize lines.

The majority of the play will be dialogue with a great amount of blocking. In the theatre world, blocking is known as the stage movements and directions worked out beforehand with the director. This production will be about two hours long with the original dialogue from Robert Louis Stevenson’s novel “Treasure Island.”

Tickets for the production tickets will be able to be purchased during student lunches, via email, and at the door the night of the production. The first show will be Friday April 24 at 7 p.m. followed by two showings the next day on Saturday at 2:30 p.m. and 7 p.m. The final show will be Sunday April 26 at 2:30 p.m. Tickets are $5 for students, $7 for adults.

Pets to adopt at Stafford County SPCA

xena 3.12.15
Xena is a 14 week old pit bill mix that is UTD on her puppy shots and is already housebroken. She loves being around people! 
Nahla is one of the sweetest cats at our shelter! She is happiest when being pet. She is a tabby/calico mix, 4 years old, spayed, and UTD on shots.
LOST DOG – Senior Pug. Went missing 3/10/15 in King George Oakland Park area. Please contact or 540-657-7387 if you have any information. 



-Information provided by the Stafford SPCA. Contact them for more information on any of the animals shown above.

Madigan’s offers American fare on the Occoquan waterfront

Madigans, occoquan, restaurant

The next time you’re looking for a waterfront meal, and you don’t want to leave the area, head over to Madigan’s Waterfront Restaurant, a restaurant in Occoquan that’s been open for almost 10-years.

Cathy Madigan and her husband started in the restaurant business in Prince William back in 1997, before moving to their current location.

“We had Madigan’s Grille, which was up on Old Bridge Road…from 1997 until 2007,” said Madigan, continuing, “My husband always wanted to have a restaurant on the water. This is really his dream…we’ve lived in Florida and North Carolina for a long time, and we ended up settling at Madigan’s Grille, but when this location [in Occoquan] became available, then we jumped at it.”

Madigan said that their menu consists of American fare with a heavy emphasis on seafood, and many of their seafood items are among the most popular with customers.crab & avocado eggrolls.PNG

“The crab cakes. People love our crab cakes. The stuffed flounder – it’s wonderful – it melts in your mouth. It’s a filet of flounder that’s stuffed with crab meat and baby shrimp, Monterey Jack cheese and it’s topped with a little lemon butter sauce. And then also the Dirty Chicken – it’s kind of one of our signature dishes,” said Madigan.

They have inside dining space, patio seating in front of the Occoquan River, and an upstairs reception area where they host a slew of weddings and special events.

“We try to do special events every month,” said Madigan.

They offer themed dinners for the holidays, and one of their most popular special events is their wine nights.

“About once a month we do a wine glass painting, plus a half a bottle of wine or $35. People love that – they get to paint four wine glasses and enjoy a half a bottle of wine while they’re doing it with their friends,” Madigan said.

An upcoming event they’re hosting is ‘Shots Around the World’ which is run by Fireball Whiskey.

“We’re the only bar in this area that they’ve chosen to have it. This is our third year of doing it,” Madigan commented.

In their patio deck area, Madigan’s Waterfront Restaurant has a Tiki bar that opens in April, which offers local entertainment every night and drink specials.

The Madigan family does community outreach for charities, using the restaurant to host charity events and donations of food and gift certificates to charities.

“We donate a lot of gift certificates to charity events. We’ve had different [charity] events here at the restaurant. We have a yearly event for leukemia – a golf tournament. We’ve had the Wounded Warriors, where they took over the whole downstairs [for an event],” Madigan said.

According to Madigan, a big part of their success in the community has been their employees.

“We’re very fortunate – we have wonderful employees, that are very loyal,” Madigan commented.

The restaurant will celebrate its tenth year anniversary this October.

Manassas City Hall art exhibit: Water, water everywhere

manassas, virginia, art

Have you ever watched the Ebb & Flow of water as it laps against the bank, whether it is a river or the ocean? Photographer Hannele Lahti explores the visual fabric of life that is water in the next exhibit at The Hall at Manassas City Hall. Ebb & Flow is a photo exhibit capturing the fleeting moment when all of the variables meld together and are stilled. The exhibit opens on March 17 and runs through April 24 at City Hall, 9027 Center Street in Manassas, Virginia.

Hannele Lhati is a nationally-recognized documentary and fine art photographer who creates images that explore the wonder and fragility of the natural world. She is the owner of Hannele Lahti Photography and a contract photographer for National Geographic. As a child, Lahti grew up on a lake and learned to respect the natural world, to honor its beauty as she sat by the water’s edge with her grandfather.

Exhibits in The Hall rotate on a monthly basis and include different forms of visual art.   Visiting The Hall is free and open to the public from 8 a.m. to 6 p.m. and later when evening meetings are held in the building.

manassas, virginia, art

The Occoquan Reservoir depicted in the Ebb & Flow art exhibit will be held at Manassas, Virginia’s City Hall


manassas, virginia, art

Lake Champlain depicted at the Ebb & Flow art exhibit will be held at Manassas, Virginia City Hall

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