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Moshos a Dedicated Swimmer, Student

MANASSAS, Va. – What you do know about Reni Moshos is that she is a phenomenal swimmer.

She is currently being recruited by some of the top colleges in the nation, including University of Florida and University of Arizona.  

What you don’t know about Moshos is that she also excels in the classroom, and was recently named to the 2013-14 USA Swimming Scholastic All-America Team, with a 3.5 grade point average.  

She enjoys sports movies where athletes overcome obstacles and succeed as a team, has played on a travel volleyball team and after a challenging swim meet, can be seen scarfing down a snack wrap with fries and a McFlurry from McDonald’s.

Reni began her love of swimming when she was six years old.  She enjoyed the water, but sought out the competitive spirit that embodies those who participate and watch the sport. So when her father, James, offered up the opportunity for her to swim full time in a competitive nature, she dove in — literally.

Reni is a junior at Highland School in Warrenton.  Along with participating on her school’s swim team, she’s also a member of her travel swim club, Nation’s Capital Swim Club (NCAP), with some meets being held at the Freedom Aquatic Center in Manassas, VA.

 “You know a lot of the people you are swimming against, so you work hard not to lose to anyone,” said Moshos.

This April, Moshos faced a challenging obstacle while participating with her swim club in Arizona competing in the Grand Prix swim meet.  The first day was a success, but the second day proved to be a hurdle for each of the members of her relay team who did not swim well.  

“After our coach talked sat us all down and spoke to us, we were able to go and swim fast and strong,” says Moshos.  

They didn’t win, but the team worked together to perform better by the conclusion of the meet.

“Even though it’s still a meet and there are a high level of swimmers there, we still have to perform at our best and try our best.”

Moshos credits much of her success to her parents, James and Olympia Moshos, because they encourage her to do her best and drive her wherever swimming dictates they travel.

“My parents are extremely supportive,” comments Reni.  “After I have a bad swim they critique what I did well and what I didn’t. They are like my coaches in a way.”  

Along with her parents the instructional support provided by her coach, Jeremy Linn, is the extra key to her success.  

“He knows how far to push me,” says Moshos.  As a 1996 Olympian, Reni is confident that Linn can show her the skills necessary to get her there too, “He definitely knows what I need to do and what it takes to get [to the Olympics].”

There is no off-season for Moshos other than a two week break in summer.  Swimming takes place all year round.  

When there is no off-season, athletes go from good to great much like Reni and her fellow teammates.  Workouts are usually daily and consist of plyometrics, ab and core work, aerobics and distance running.

A strength for Moshos is her ability to get excited about her relay splits in the 200 meter freestyle even more than her individual races; her best time of 23.01” with her 50 meter portion of the race.

“I get really excited about having the team aspect,” says Moshos, “because it boosts my confidence and gets me ready.”

For now, Moshos sets her sights on graduating from Highland School and working hard in her studies.  Attending a prestigious university is also on her horizon, but she knows she will still be actively involved in the sport of swimming.  

“I can see myself as a coach or mentor.  I don’t think I can ever fully leave it [swimming],” says Reni who has the talent to be a viable candidate for the 2016 or 2018 Summer Olympics.

Reni encourages younger athletes who want to explore the swimming world and try their hands at competitive swimming.  “Make sure you are happy with it and want to be there. In the end, it’s a lot of commitment to yourself and a team,” states Moshos.

Fall for the Book: Haute Cuisine at the Hylton is Sept. 18




091514-fall-for-bookMANASSAS, Va. – Read Manassas author Belinda Miller’s Winterfrost, part of the Phillip’s Quest Series, and you may find yourself whipping up a batch of Ivy’s Tater Dumplings (gnocchi) with Phillip’s Hazelnut Sauce (marinara with hazelnuts) in the kitchen. It’s her mother’s recipe, and it’s in the back of the book. You’ll find the recipe for her mother’s Pine Nut Cookies (Amaretti con Pignoli) in her newest book, Above the Stars.

“Those are three recipes she always served at Christmas,” said Miller. “They mean ‘familia’ – family.”

Belinda Miller is one of the featured writers at Haute Cuisine at the Hylton, a Fall for the Book event this Thursday, Sept. 18 from 6 to 9 p.m. at the Hylton Performing Arts Center, 10960 George Mason Circle, Manassas, on the Prince William Campus of George Mason University. The event is free.

While Miller talks with fans of Ragwort Chronicles, Chef Anthony, a friend and former chef at the Stanley Hotel in Estes, Colorado, will be handing out samples of her gnocchi with hazelnut sauce, prepared by Miller’s friends, Ciro D’Augustino, of Ciro’s Italian Pizzeria in Centreville and Andy Travers (100 pignoli). “They wouldn’t let me cook,” she said.

Novelist Claudia Lefeve will bring her new Texas-based crime novel, “Destined for Trouble, a Jules Cannon Mystery,” to the at the Hylton event, along with her husband, Dave Lefeve, a chef at The Cock and Bowl restaurant in Occoquan. Chef Dave will be serving samples of scallop ceviche, a dish featured in the fictional town of Trouble Island, where Lefeve’s main character comes to the rescue of a friend who is the prime suspect in the murder of a local restaurant owner. Haute Cuisine at the Hylton is all about mixing up food and fiction or, at least, flair.

Claudia Lefeve

Claudia Lefeve

The event starts at 6:15 p.m. with a food writing workshop led by Jason Shriner, the Aubergine Chef, familiar to many for his popular and affordable baking classes at the Manassas Park Community Center.

At 7 p.m., headlining novelist Laura Florand takes the stage to discuss her bestselling and award-winning Amour et Chocolat series, including The Chocolate Thief, The Chocolate Kiss, and more. Now a lecturer at Duke University, Florand is very dedicated to her research into French chocolate.

For patrons who with that sudden craving for chocolate, at 7:30 p.m.,individual stations open for tastings, demonstrations, and discussions by a variety of chefs and food celebrities, including Robert Kingsbury of Kingsbury Chocolates and Confections, distributed throughout No.Va. and D.C.; Amy Riolo, author of The Mediterranean Diabetes Cookbook, and Joe Yonan, food and travel editor of The Washington Post and the author of Eat Your Vegetables: Bold Recipes for the Single Cook.

Miguel Pires, owner of Zandra’s Taqueria, and recognized as Top 40 Under 40 Rising Stars in Full Service Restaurants Magazine in March 2014, will be giving patrons a sneak peek at the fare available at his new restaurant opening in historic downtown Manassas.

Representatives of Heritage Brewing Company will offer samples of their organic and locally sourced craft beers, direct from the tasting room of the veteran owned and operated microbrewery on the outskirts of Historic Manassas. They’ll be sharing news about their new “Freedom Isn’t Free” canning line.

Recently appointed Prince William County Poet Laureates Robert Scott and Alexandra “Zan” Hailey will be in the house, sharing original food poems and the latest news about their ongoing community outreach – Zan’s Ekphrasis program and Robert’s 10,000 Poems project. Both just returned from making waves in Williamsburg as part of a Poetry Society of Virginia event.

The second annual Haute Cuisine at the Hylton is sponsored by Write by the Rails, the Prince William Chapter of the Virginia Writers Club.

Admission is free and open to the public.

For more information on the complete schedule of Fall for the Book events—taking place Sept. 11-18 at George Mason University and at locations throughout VA, DC, and MD—visit www.fallforthebook.org.

Novant Health Announces ‘TrueBeam’ as Cancer Treatment Option


GAINESVILLE, Va. – Novant Health’s cancer center in in Gainesville has added a new tool to its center at the entrance of Lake Manassas.

The “TrueBeam” system is designed to perform sophisticated surgeries, and it will expand the treatment options for those with challenging cases of cancer, according to a hospital spokeswoman who released the following statement:

The system works by choreographing highly sophisticated systems—imaging, beam delivery and motion management—and makes it possible to deliver treatments quickly while monitoring and compensating for tumor motion. It will enable faster, accurate tumor targeting in the treatment of challenging cancers throughout the body, including those in the brain, spinal cord and lung. The $6 million construction project is expected to be complete with the new TrueBeam system operational in the spring of 2015.

“TrueBeam is a breakthrough technology that enhances our ability to treat cancer and other diseases with noninvasive image-guided radiosurgery,” said Dr. Sanjeev Aggarwal, medical director of Novant Health Cancer Center. “It represents a quantum leap in terms of the spectrum of advanced treatment options we can offer patients fighting serious disease.”

Improving the patient experience
TrueBeam also offers features to improve the patient experience. The machine’s mechanisms run smoothly, quietly and fast. Three closed-circuit television systems and a two-way audio system allow for comprehensive monitoring of the patient from outside the treatment room and facilitate interactions between patient and therapist. Enhanced technology enables music to be played during the short treatments, helping to create a more soothing treatment environment.

Fast, precise treatments
The system can deliver treatments 2.4 to 4 times faster with a dose delivery rate of up to 2,400 monitor units per minute—double the output of most other radiosurgery systems, including CyberKnife. This is important, as independent studies have shown that with faster treatments there is less tumor and patient movement.

“Intelligent” automation further speeds treatments with an up to five-fold reduction in the number of steps needed for imaging, positioning and treating patients compared with earlier Varian technology. A complex radiosurgery that typically takes 30 to 60 minutes can be completed in just 5 to 20 minutes. 

Novant Health Cancer is nationally recognized by the American College of Radiology, and is a vital part of Novant Health’s comprehensive cancer care program. That program includes Novant Health Prince William Medical Center whose cancer care is accredited by the American College of Surgeons Commission on Cancer, and the Novant Health Breast Center, recognized by the National Accreditation Program for Breast Centers. The collaborative and multidisciplinary clinical care team treat cancers, including bladder; bone; brain; breast; colorectal; esophageal, gynecologic, head and neck; lung; pancreatic, prostate; skin; stomach; and testicular.

Newton, Thomas to Perform at Celebration Stage

STAFFORD, Va. – Stafford County is proud to announce that one of its own, renowned bluegrass musician Mark Newton, and his partner, Steve Thomas, will perform the first concert held at Stafford’s new Celebration Stage at Pratt Park. Newton and Thomas are set to play the stage, an initiative of the Stafford’s 350th Anniversary Celebration, on Friday, Sept. 19, 2014, at 7:30 p.m.

“We are delighted to have a wonderful venue to offer performances of this caliber to our citizens,” said Chairman of the Board of Supervisors Jack Cavalier, Griffis-Widewater District. “I think it’s fitting that a native son of Stafford County performs the first concert at a stage that symbolizes our 350 years of history.”

Newton is a veteran of the Heights of Grass, Cabin Hill, the Knoxville Grass, Virginia Squires, Tony Rice Unit and even the Seldom Scene for a brief stint. Thomas has toured with award-winning artists such as Barbara Mandrell and Del McCoury. He’s played the Grand Ole Opry with Jim & Jesse and the Osborne Brothers. They bring with them years of musical experience, a Grammy nomination, a CMA nomination and multiple IBMA awards.  The duo formed in 2012 and just released their first album Reborn.

Tickets for the concert are $1 and may be purchased online, at a Parks, Recreation and Community Facilities office, or at the concert. No alcohol is allowed at the park and patrons are asked to bring their own chairs and blankets. Celebration Stage is located near the entrance to Pratt Park at 120 River Road, Falmouth, VA 22405.

Yankees Back in Falmouth This Weekend

STAFFORD COUNTY, Va. – This weekend, Sept. 13 and 14, teach President Lincoln how to take a “selfie” at the 7th Annual “Yankees in Falmouth! And Some Confederates Too!”

This family-friendly and free event in Stafford County interprets the Union Army’s occupation of the Rappahannock River community of Falmouth during the Civil War. The event will be held on the grounds of the Moncure Conway House, an Underground Railroad Network to Freedom Historical Site, and the Historic Port of Falmouth Park.

Bring your family out to the event and engage them in history while they capture pictures of a variety of reenactors, including Union and Confederate soldiers, President Lincoln, the 14th Brooklyn, also known as “The Red Legged Devils”, 23rd USCT African-American regiments, 8th Virginia Infantry, 13th Virginia Infantry, 47th Infantry, Edenton Bell Battery/Artillery, and 3rd U.S. Regulars. Some of the military reenacting units will portray the historical counterparts that were encamped and quartered in Falmouth during the Civil War. Event activities will include daytime and nighttime artillery firing demonstrations, period music by Evergreen Shade, special lectures, strict military impressions, period telegraph display, encampments, civilian living history interpretation, and other special activities.

On Saturday, two presentations will be given: “Civil War Union Women in Falmouth and Stafford” by Al Connor and “Servant Call Bells and the Southern System” by Lenetta Schools. On Sunday at 11 a.m., a Civil War Church service will be held and the general public is encouraged to attend.

Saturday’s daytime event is from 9 a.m. to 6 p.m. Saturday will also feature a special night time cannon firing at 8:30 p.m. at the Historic Port of Falmouth Park.

Sunday’s event is from 9:30 a.m. to 3:00 p.m. For a complete schedule of events, visit tourstaffordva.com. For more information about the “Yankees in Falmouth! and Some Confederates Too!!” annual event and other Civil War activities in Stafford County, please visit the tourstaffordva.com or contact Stafford County Tourism directly at 540-658-8681.

Eagle Scout Makes Benches for Clearbrook Center of the Arts at Tacketts Mill

090914 benches

LAKE RIDGE, Va. – Sean Zylich, of Boy Scout Troop 295, has fulfilled the requirements of Eagle Scout rank by designing and implementing the construction of 12 ash benches  at the Clearbrook Center of the Arts, located at the Tacketts Mill shopping center in Lake Ridge.  

The benches will be displayed around the Tackett’s Mill Center after they have been painted by local artists through a design competition.  

Clearbrook Center of the Arts is a new presence in Lake Ridge and is located at 2230B Tackett’s Mill Drive.  The center relies on local volunteers and seeks to promote artistic and educational activities in the eastern end of Prince William County, Virginia and the public appreciation of these activities in both public and private venues.  

The Clearbrook Foundation, a  Virginia non-profit, is underwriting the Center of the Arts and is funding Prince William County’s Poet Laureate program.

Tackett’s Mill’s June event, Poetry and Jazz, crowned Zan Hailey and Dr. Robert Scott as Prince William County’s first ever Poet Laureates.  

Readers are encouraged to visit tackettsmill.com for more information.

Prince William’s 5 Classic Fall Activities

Editor’s note: This column is written by Discover Prince William / Manassas and is posted to Potomac Local under a special content-sharing agreement. 

Discover Prince William County and ManassasWith fall upon us, visions of pumpkin and smells of fresh apple cider are filling the air. We invite you to get out of the house this weekend to experience these five traditional autumn activities in Prince William & Manassas. 

1)      Go for a fall foliage bike ride through Prince William Forest Park. One of the National Parks in the County, Prince William Forest has more than 21 miles of bicycles-accessible roads and trails. Enjoy the 12 mile paved Scenic Drive and see if you can spot wildlife throughout this quiet ride. Prince William Forest Park also offers rental cabins and campsites for those wanting to continue the outdoor experience all weekend!

2)      Take in a taste of fall. Grab a pint (or two) at Heritage Brewing Company where their autumn seasonal ale, the Bradford Ale is fermented with pumpkin and bourbon infused cinnamon sticks. Cross the street to BadWolf Brewing Company where their taps are continually changing.

3)      Go pumpkin picking. Get the experience of one of the few pumpkin patches left in Northern Virginia at Yankey Farms. Choose your fall pumpkin, and cut it right off the vine. Enjoy shopping through their other seasonal produce including gourds and winter squash. If you have kids, check out the corn maze and cow train.

4)      Take the free Prince William County Farm Tour. Enjoy a weekend in the country experiencing modern farm life through the annual Prince William County Farm Tour on September 27th-28th. With 10 locations open to the public, experience fun and educational activities for the whole family. Follow the farm tour map to watch a sheep shearing demonstration at Ben Lomond or tour the flower gardens at Lynn Vale Farm & Studio.

5)      Enjoy a fall festival. From the Occoquan Arts and Craft Festival to the Taste of the Potomac in Woodbridge, there are plenty of fall festivals, no matter your interest. 

Make sure to mark your calendars to discover all of the fun fall events and activities in Prince William & Manassas. For more information visit our website, discoverpwm.com and share with us on Facebook and Twitter how you #discoverpwm.

Potomac Local Pets


Bandit is an affectionate boy who is always ready to play. He is a lab mix with a beautiful black coat and  a gentle, sweet disposition. Lots of adorable puppy energy. Estimated DOB is mid February 2014. Healthy and up to date on shots, he is ready to bring endless joy to his forever home

Spice: She is just the cutest thing! Spice is a very social and affectionate 3 year old calico  who still quite kittenish. She has been spayed and is UTD on all her shots

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

Quantico to Welcome 2nd Annual Blockade Run Kayak & Stand-Up Paddleboard Races

QUANTICO, Va. – In 1861/1862 Confederate forces blockaded the Potomac River with the use of land based cannon and artillery pieces.  One of the main gun batteries was located in the town of Evansport (present day Quantico).  Union vessels travelling up and down the Potomac River were forced to run the blockade. 

Make history, in a place of history. Come join us on Saturday September 20 from 3 p.m. to 7 p.m. for the 2nd Annual Blockade Run Kayak & Stand-Up Paddleboard (SUP) Races being held on the same waters as the Confederate Blockade of the Potomac during the Civil War!!!

The Town of Quantico is pleased to partner with the Ft. Belvior/Quantico Chapter of Team River Runner and the American Canoe Association (ACA) in hosting this event.

This event will include the following races: 1K kayak race, 1K kayak 4-person team relay race, 1K SUP race, 1K SUP 4-person team relay, 250M Youth kayak race and 250M Youth SUP race. An awards ceremony will follow the races.

All equipment will be provided and is included in the registration fee. The registration fee for this event is $20 for adults, kids race for free. Same day registration will be available. This event is open to the public. Families and pets are welcome. Children 8 years old and over are welcome to participate but must be accompanied by a parent or legal guardian.

This event will be held at Raftelis Potomac River Park 408 River Road Quantico VA 2213.

To register please contact Mayor Kevin Brown at cell/text (571) 334-3432 or mayor@townofquantico.org.  Find out more about this and other town events by visiting townofquantico.org or by searching for “Town of Quantico” on Facebook.

Palmer Family Celebrates Five Decades of Love

The family of Robe’rt (Bob) and Bettye Palmer are holding a surprise 50th wedding anniversary celebration today at the Waterford Hotel in Springfield.  Two hundred guests from across the country are expected to attend, including community leaders.

The Palmers were engaged in 1963, a pinnacle year for the Civil Rights movement.  As plans were being made for 100,000 people to converge on Washington, D.C. for the historic March on Washington where Dr. Martin Luther King would deliver his famous “I Have a Dream” speech, the Palmers were making a promise that has held firm for decades.  The Palmers married September 1, 1964.

Together, the Palmers raised a family in the wake of significant historic events, including the first moon landing, the Viet Nam War, the Nixon administration and the continuing conflicts in the Middle East.  They have four children: Robe’rt, Jr., Palmer, Remond Palmer, Nicole Guess and Germaine Palmer.  The Palmers also have four grandchildren: Dana Rae Lawrence, Remond Keith Palmer, Jr., Keshawn Jemond Palmer and Valentino Bryon Guess.

The Palmers are active members of Dumfries’ First Mount Zion Baptist Church, under the leadership of Dr. Luke Torian and Assistant Reverend Sandra James.  According to Robe’rt, Jr., “Over these 50 years, as with all families, Bob and Bettye have no doubt had their ups and downs, their triumphs and losses, sickness and health.  But the one constant, as anyone who knows them can attest to, has always been their love and commitment to God and to each other.”

Nicole Guess says her mother is known to say, “Keep your hand in God’s hand,” while Bob’s motto is, “I will trust in the Lord always.”

“You can be on time for everything else,” says Bettye.  “Don’t make me late for church.”

Bettye is also known for her coordinated outfits, from dress, to shoes, to hat, to handbag.  Guess remembers her father saying, “Bettye, you don’t have to buy another hat, dress or purse, even if they are giving it away!”

The Palmers met in 1963 in Asbury Park, NJ, where they both had moved to work.  At the time, the area was the hub of the African American community.  Bettye’s career took her from a clothes cleaners to manufacturing and corporate America, including Signal Light and AT&T.  Bob worked in the hospitality industry and eventually with the Asbury Park school system until he retired in 1999.  In 2006, the family moved to Dumfries.

Robe’rt, Jr., holds a Bachelor’s degree from Rowan University and a Master’s from Strayer University.  He has worked for the Department of Defense for 25 years in D.C. Metro. 

Remond attended Monmouth University and graduated from Seton Hall University.  He is a retired fireman and currently instrumental in the Asbury Park political system. 

Nicole holds a Bachelor’s degree from Rowan University and a Master’s from Strayer University.  She is a Department of Defense Contractor in D.C. Metro.  

Germaine graduated from Potomac High School in Dumfries and works for Prince William County. 

 “With that strong commitment, their union has stood the test of time,” Robe’rt, Jr. says about his parents.  “And that is what we celebrate today.”

Pastor, Fire Chief Do Ice Bucket Challenge

Pastor Connie Thomson

Pastor Connie Thomson

Besides both being community leaders, what do Connie Thomson, Pastor of River of Grace Lutheran Church, Manassas, VA and Prince William County Fire and Rescue Chief, Kevin McGee have in common? Both recently received the ALS “Ice Bucket Challenge”.

On Sunday, August 17, 2014, on the front lawn of River of Grace Lutheran Church, Pastor Connie Thomson was the first to complete the Ice Bucket Challenge.

When Jeff Stamp, member of River of Grace, was asked by Pastor Thomson why he chose her for the challenge, he told her it’s because she is always encouraging others to get out of their comfort zones.

Pastor Thomson said she believes “life happens when we get out of comfort zones because that is when we stop counting on ourselves and God can work with us.” Pastor Connie Thomson also said she accepted the challenge “because it was fun for the congregation and because she wanted people suffering from ALS to know that there are people standing with them spiritually and emotionally.”

Before being doused with the icy water, Pastor Thomson named her choices of people to receive the challenge. Pastor Thomson named two fellow pastors: Kate Davidson of Columbia, Maryland, John Stevens from Oregon City, Oregon, “because why should the East Coast have all the fun”, Jim Hedrick, member of River of Grace, and Prince William County Fire and Rescue Chief Kevin McGee. McGee was invited to River of Grace to receive the challenge with Pastor Thomson and he accepted.

Chief Kevin McGee said he accepted the challenge because, “it is a great opportunity to bring more awareness to this terrible and debilitating disease so society can develop better treatments. Chief McGee went on to say that receiving the ice bucket challenge “is a small price to pay in comparison to what the people with ALS suffer every day.” While still dripping with icy water, Pastor Connie Thomson appeared to eagerly drench Chief McGee with an equally icy bucket of water.

The “Ice Bucket Challenge” was originated by “Team Frate Train”, friends of Peter Frates who was diagnosed with Amyotrophic Lateral Sclerosis (ALS or Lou Gehrig’s Disease) in 2012. In addition to receiving the “ice bucket challenge”, Pastor Connie Thomson and Fire Chief McGee will be making contributions to the ALS Association.

The “ice bucket challenge” total donations has reached $22.9 million, 12 times the amount raised last year according to the ALS Association.

The Learning Experience Collects Backpacks for Charity


The Learning Experience (TLE) in Woodbridge, Va., conducted a back-to-school drive leading up to its ‘Back-to-School Bash’ on August 9 to donate school supplies to Operation Home Front, a local nonprofit organization.

In total, the TLE Woodbridge collected 15 backpacks filled with supplies for donation. The Back-to-School Bash was open to the community and included activities such as a large water slide for the kids, games and prizes.

All-in-part of the academy’s first-of-its-kind philanthropy program and curriculum at the preschool level, children enrolled at TLE are no strangers to philanthropic work. TLE students are taught how philanthropy’s core tenants of selflessness, generosity and giving can be applied to their classroom, home life, and community for years to come, and participate each month in philanthropic activities such as the school supplies donation project partnering with nonprofit organizations.

For additional information, visit thelearningexperience.com.

Anne Kadis Wins Stafford County 350th Art Competition

Local artist Anne Kadis envisioned marrying Stafford’s rich history with modern day life in her award-winning work “History Lessons.” Ms. Kadis won the Commemorative Art Piece Competition sponsored by 350th Anniversary partner The Professional Artists and Artisans Association of Stafford County (PAAASC). Limited edition prints of “History Lessons” will be offered as a thank you to the many volunteers who have helped make the 350th Anniversary a success.

“Without our many volunteers, we would not have been able to pull off the events and programming this year,” said Chairman of the 350th Anniversary Blue Ribbon Committee Harry Crisp. “We wanted to do something special for them and I think this lovely print will remind them of this special year and their important role in it.”

Ms. Kadis said this is the first painting she completely staged. She wanted to depict the strong roles of African-American women in the lives of children like the young George Washington as well as pay tribute to the role of Stafford County as being part of the “Freedom Trail” slaves used to escape. The quilt in the painting is an heirloom belonging to Ms. Kadis’ family. The setting for the painting is the front porch of Concord, a home built in 1790 in Stafford that belongs to local historians Rick and Jerrilynn MacGregor. The original painting is on display in the lobby of the George L. Gordon, Jr., Government Center, 1300 Courthouse Road, Stafford, VA 22554.

Stafford’s 350th Anniversary Celebration is still going strong! The Wings and Wheels Festival takes place on Saturday, October 18, 2014, where Stafford will honor its strong military heritage. The Trail to Freedom Tour and the Rowser African-American History Wall dedication follow on Saturday, November 1, 2014. Personalized bricks are still available to support these two events as well as other 350th Anniversary programming. The bricks will be placed at the Rowser Building. For more information, visit www.stafford350.com. 

Potomac Local Pets




Bandit is an affectionate boy who is always ready to play. He is a lab mix with a beautiful black coat and  a gentle, sweet disposition. Lots of adorable puppy energy. Estimated DOB is mid February 2014. Healthy and up to date on shots, he is ready to bring endless joy to his forever home.


Onyx is a striking, 3 year old, all black male cat with brilliant gold eyes. Onyx has been micro-chipped, UTD on vaccinations, has been neutered and would love to go home with you today!

Lost cat

Missing since last Saturday evening in Stafford on 610 at Stafford Glen Court area. His name is Kitty Boy – orange bobtail, 3 to 4 yrs old and neutered. Please call if seen found. Five four zero six two three three seven nine two. Reward offered.

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

Want a Garden Plot in Dumfries? Follow These 24 Rules

DUMFRIES, Va. – A new community garden has been built in Dumfries. Want a garden plot? Well, first you have to know the rules.

The Town Council had a look at the new rules for the garden – all 24 of them that outline how big each plot should be, how you shouldn’t steal vegetables from other people’s plots, and how community gardeners are expected to attend regular garden club meetings and workshops.

“The community garden brings together people of all ages. It helps people learn to be self-sustaining and learn more about healthy living,” said Dumfries Town Councilman Derrick Wood, who pushed for the creation of the new garden as part of the town’s recently formed Parks and Recreation Commission.

The garden, located in the town’s Ginn Park on Graham Park Road, has only been in use for three months and has five gardeners and one church group who have claimed 11 of the 26 plots. Wood says he hopes to have all of the garden plots claimed by next spring, just in time for the next growing season.

Jersey Mikes Opening at Smoketown Stations


WOODBRIDGE, Va. – Get ready for another Jersey Mikes sub shop, this time at Smoketown Stations shopping center.

The sub shop will open its doors next to the Barbershop & Co. and Old Country Buffet on Prince William Parkway in Woodbridge inside a shop that used to house a Quiznos Subs.

So far, no opening has been announced.

“The site has just been approved…it hasn’t even gone into lease execution yet,” said Jersey Mikes spokeswoman Josie Capozzi.

But that hasn’t stopped a flood of posts to social media from Woodbridge residents exited about the upcoming opening. The store will join locations in Stafford Marketplace shopping center and at Stonewall Shops Square in Gainesville.

The sub chain quickly expanding across the U.S. and plans to open its 800th shop on Wednesday, with 40 more stores to open by the end of the year.

Jersey Mikes typically opens its stores on Wednesday and offers a free sub sandwich in exchange for a donation to a selected local charity, said Capozzi.

Potomac Local Pets


Lost dog — Charger 

Vicinity of Mountain View Road in Stafford County. Charger is a 3-year-old male He weights about 85 pounds and has a completely black coat.

He should have a brown leather collar on He may be with a brown female pit-bull named Coco, she is around 65 lbs and may be a little friendlier than Charger.He is shy around people.

Kitty adoption 

The following kitties are available at special adoption rates: Midnight and Harmony – only $49. These sweethearts have amazing stories to tell and endless love to give!

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

The Lazy Pig BBQ and Catering Serves Up Homestyle Cooking

DUMFRIES, Va. – The Lazy Pig BBQ and Catering is a southern carry-out restaurant located off of U.S. 1 in Dumfries. The restaurant is housed in a small, rambler house that has been converted into a commercial space. 

At The Lazy Pig BBQ and Catering, barbecue lovers will find their favorites like macaroni and cheese, corn on the cob, cornbread, and collard greens. The Lazy Pig’s ribs, pulled pork, and briskets are all smoked on site in their two large smokers that sit in front of the restaurant. 

The owner, Ken Harris, created Lazy Pig BBQ and Catering in 2005. Before opening his business, Harris gained a lot of experience cooking for his friends and family.

Now after nine years, Harris said that customers still love the ribs, pulled pork, macaroni and cheese, and collard greens. Besides being local residents, much of the reason why Harris, last November, chose Dumfries to open The Lazy Pig’s newest location is that outside of Woodbridge and Stafford, finding barbecue restaurants independent of fast food was difficult. Harris said that there needed to be a home cooked barbecue restaurant that could be convenient for residents. 

The Lazy Pig, said Harris, is all about providing excellent customer service with high quality food. The Lazy Pig also prides itself on efficiency so that customers are in and out in the shortest amount of time. Overall, Harris said that he wants customers to know that The Lazy Pig BBQ and Catering cares about its customers and their needs.

The Lazy Pig BBQ and Catering is located at 17530 Waters Lane, Dumfries, VA, 22026. The restaurant is closed on Mondays and Tuesdays. It is open Wednesdays through Saturdays, 11 a.m. – 8:30 p.m. Sundays from 12 p.m. – 7 p.m. For more information call 703-221-4511. 

Siblings, now at Separate Schools, Support Each Other after Playing Together at Potomac

Trey and Amber Porter

WOODBRIDGE, Va. – Both Amber and Trey Porter attended Potomac Senior High School where they played basketball.  Both siblings assisted their teams on a successful first round appearance to the Virginia State Basketball Championship held at Robinson Secondary School in Fairfax, Virginia; with Trey and the Panthers most recently winning a State Championship title in March 2014.

Now, the duo plays college basketball separate from one another for the first time in three years; Amber at Stetson University located in DeLand, Fla. and Trey at George Mason University in Fairfax, Virginia.

Trey, a freshman, will play at the forward position this season for the George Mason Patriots.  His goal is to bring key extras to his new team.  

“I want to add athleticism and defensive intensity to the game with some offensive putbacks mixed in,” he says.

Amber, who plays Center, is eager to try her hand as a power forward if possible in an effort to broaden her game.  She averaged 14.9 points per game last season as a rookie for the Hatters and earned such titles as Atlantic Sun Freshman of The Year and Mid-Major Freshman of the Year (College Sports Madness).  Amber also set Stetson’s single-season record with 129 blocked shots on the season, breaking the previous record of 72.

Returning as a sophomore for the 2014-2015 season, Amber is working on improving her all-around game this summer; building on her gym workouts with personal trainer George Logan of G Team Sports, Inc.

“ I have really been focusing on my defense and ball handling moves,” says Porter.

School selections weren’t easy and many top Division-1 scholastic and athletic programs were after both of them during their recruitment period.  “Go somewhere you like and that works best for you,” says Trey, “you have to be prepared to utilize the school as well as the athletic program.”

Undoubtedly, the support of their mother over the years has been invaluable, but coupled with the support they give each other shows their dedication to family.  

“I am always amazed at all the people I don’t know who come up and show love for both of us,” expresses Amber, “but of course I am always going to support my brother.”

As siblings go, each know a little known fact about the other that would interest those who are learning about the dynamic duo.  

“I enjoy yoga,” said Trey. “Your body feels great afterward.”  Amber whispers, “I’m shy,” despite having to conduct regular interviews on account of her rookie success.

They each share a desire to reach the professional level with the NBA and WNBA, respectively, but they understand it starts with the present. Advising rising athletes who wish to get to the collegiate level

“Work hard, practice hard and play hard…constantly,” Trey said.

For now, Amber spends this summer working on her game independently from her team before her return for the fall school year and Trey is showing off his talent at the Kenner League (Nike Pro/College League) being held at Georgetown University in Washington from July through mid August.

And who else would be at Trey’s summer league games, but Amber, an older sister supporting her younger brother.

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