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News
Miss Rivershore provides boat rides to Leesylvania park guests

WOODBRIDGE — Capt. Mark Perry is giving boat tours of the Potomac River.

His boat the Miss Rivershore leaves from Leesylvania State Park in Woodbridge every other Sunday. Sightseers are taken on an eight-mile trip that loops from Freestone Point at Leesylvania south to Possum Point, and then back to Leesylanvia park.

The loop takes 75 minutes to complete. Perry makes a stop at the popular Tim’s Rivershore restaurant so riders can stop, get off the boat, eat and drink. When the boat makes a later pass, customers can get back onboard and be ferried back to Leesylvania.

“As you know, the park hosts a number of guests who are interested in a variety of day use pursuits related to the water,” Leesylvania State Park manager Karen Lambey tells Potomac Local. “Not everyone has the space, means, or desire to maintain a boat of their own, so the recreational boating tours provided by the Miss Rivershore allows these park guests to experience the Potomac River from a new perspective. The service also nicely compliments the other concessions operation at the park, Woodbridge Sailing, which provides sailing lessons and sailboat rentals but no actual boat rides.”

The Miss Rivershore began service from Leesylvania in June. Perry, the owner of the boat and the Rivershore Charters company, bid and won a five-year contract to be the exclusive boat concessionaire at the park. The Miss Rivershore is a 50-foot covered pontoon boat with room for 46 passengers.

Trips leave Leesylvania the first and third Sunday of the month at 11 a.m., 12;15 p.m., 1:30 p.m., 2:45 p.m., 4 p.m., and 5:15 p.m. Tickets for adults cost $20 each, $15 each for seniors, $8 each for children between four and 10 years old. Children under age four ride free.

News
National Night Out activities planned in Prince William, Manassas

Prince William police tell us they will be out on Tuesday, August, 1 in the community meeting with residents. While the department has not told us about any large NNO celebrations, it did encourage neighbors to head outside and gather with each other to build a sense of community.

From Prince William police: 

The Prince William County Police Department will observe the 34th National Night Out celebration this year by encouraging County residents to lock their doors, turn on outdoor lights and spend the evening of Tuesday, August 1, outside with their neighbors as a symbol that they care about their neighborhoods. National Night Out – coordinated by the Crime Prevention Unit of the Police Department in partnership with the Prince William Crime Prevention Council – creates healthy neighborhoods block by block, to help neighbors know one another, to celebrate community, and to take steps to make neighborhoods safer for all residents. Additionally, National Night Out helps build positive relationships between the community and the Police Department.

Neighborhood Watch programs, and National Night Out, help to create a neighborhood network to prevent crime and enhance the quality of life in the County. Watches throughout the County will host motorcade stops and invite police officers and other law enforcement personnel for refreshments. For more information, call the Crime Prevention Unit at 703-792-7270.

From Manassas police: 

News
Updated: First time in 60 years Fort Hunt Baseball wins the Majors

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TRIANGLE — The Virginia Little League Championship wrapped up today with a local team taking home the state title. 

From emails: 

Local [Northern Virginia] wins and is head to regionals in Georgia. Fort Hunt Little League wins with a walk off single against Atlee Little League.
Another email: 
Fort Hunt…Atlee’ 6 to 5 in the bottom of the sixth
The majors, as they’re called, were held this week at Fuller Heights Park in Triangle at 18511 Old Triangle Road.
 
9:40 a.m. Friday, July 28, 2017
 
From an email: 
The Fort Hunt Little League (FHLL) Majors All-Star team won the 2017 Virginia State Championship on Tuesday, July 26 beating Atlee Little League 5-4 at the Fuller Heights baseball complex in Triangle, VA. 
 
This is the first time Fort Hunt Baseball, in it’s nearly 60 year history, has ever won the Majors Virginia State Championship. FHLL was 6-0 at the state tournament outscoring their opponents 94-12. Including the District 9 tournament, the team has gone 12-0 since starting All-Star play earlier this month. FHLL will next play at the Southeast Regional Little League Championship Tournament in Warner Robins, Georgia starting on August 4 in their bid to earn a spot in the Little League World Series in Williamsport, Pennsylvania in mid-August.
 
Manager Chuck Gupton said, “this exceptional group of players earned this opportunity through hard work and by never giving up. Playing at the Little League Southeast Regional Championship is a once in a life-time opportunity for these players and so exciting for our families and fans. We look forward to representing our Fort Hunt community and Virginia at the next level.” 
 
-Tony Castrilli, Fort Hunt Little League board member and one of the coaches of the Majors All-Star team

 



‘Brew Republic’ a nation devoid of craft beer snobs

Prince William Beer Trail

Editors note: This is the fourth in a series of posts showcasing breweries in Prince William County, Virginia.

Inspired by familial ties in the industry and an obsession for beer, the Heisey family, and the Frederick family came together in a joint venture to create Brew Republic Beirwerks, a new brewery in Potomac Town Center.

Brew Republic’s roots are embedded in beer culture. The Heiseys had been home-brewing for many years, becoming natural experts on commercial brewing. The Frederick’s pursued a venture to revive an old Yuengling affiliated brewery.

The venture fizzled, but in junction with The Heiseys, the two families joined forces to create an establishment in an unlikely venue. Brew Republic’s edge over its competitors is its unique environment, courtesy of its location.

“We have created a hybrid between full-service brewpubs and industrial package breweries by bringing the production to an upscale retail town center,” said Frederick. “Ordinarily, breweries are located in industrial parks or agricultural areas, far away from the beaten path, or they exist as part of a large restaurant with a full menu and mixed drinks.” (more…)

News
500 officers will have body cameras by Thanksgiving

WOORBDRIDGE — Taxpayers will begin to see their $2.7 million investment into body-worn police cameras this fall.

Prince William County Police Chief Barry Barnard said up to 500 cameras will be given to patrol officers between Labor Day and Thanksgiving.

Officers who patrol the streets, work traffic enforcement, in the K9 division, and school resource officers will all be trained to use the body-worn camera system.

“The officers are required to turn on the camera whenever they are going to have what would be described as an enforcement encounter which could lead to reasonable suspicion or probable cause that there is criminal activity occurring or that an arrest may likely result,” said Barnard.

The department’s policy requires officers to activate their camera during traffic stops, car, and foot chases while making arrests, when taking suspects to and from jail, when an officer makes a show of force, or whenever else the officer deems a body-worn camera should be activated. (more…)

News
‘During the encounter, the accused allegedly put the victim in a chokehold’

From Prince William County police:

Strangulation | Domestic Related – On July 25 at 10:33 p.m., officers responded to a residence located in the 3200 block of Berlin Court in Woodbridge to investigate a domestic assault. The victim, a 19-year old woman, reported to police that she and the accused, a family member, were involved in a verbal altercation, which escalated physically.

During the encounter, the accused allegedly put the victim in a chokehold. Once released, the victim fell to the ground. The parties eventually separated and the accused left the home. Following the investigation, officers obtained a warrant for the arrest of the accused, identified as Tony Edward BEST. The warrant on accused was served on July 26. (more…)

News
Man suspected of domestic related abduction arrested

Michael Kelly Puckett, previously sought for abduction and domestic assault and battery has been located and arrested by police, thanks to an anonymous tip. 

From Prince William County police:

Abduction | Domestic Related *ARREST – On July 25, officers located the accused, Michael Kelly PUCKETT, who was wanted in connection to a domestic altercation which occurred at a residence located in the 10400 block of Lonesome Road in Nokesville on July 23. Police received an anonymous tip, which ultimately led officers to his location where he was arrested without incident.

Arrested on July 25:
Michael Kelly PUCKETT, 48, of the 10400 block of Lonesome Rd in Nokesville
Charged with abduction, domestic assault & battery, and destruction of property
Court Date: Pending | Bond: Held WITHOUT Bond

Abduction | Domestic Related [Previously Released] – On July 23 at 3:30 a.m., officers responded to investigate a domestic call which occurred earlier that morning at a residence located in the 10400 block of Lonesome Rd in Nokesville. The investigation revealed that the victim, a 48-year-old woman of Nokesville, was involved in a verbal altercation with the accused, a family member, which escalated.  (more…)

News
In rain, heat, it’s game on for volunteers at Little League majors

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From an email from Amy Craig: 

“Taken SaturdaySunday and Monday. Plus these of our volunteers during the rain delay on Sunday.”

The Virginia Little League Championship scheduled Friday, July 21 to Tuesday, July 25 at Fuller Heights Park.

It is the crowing event for Little League teams in the state. The winner will head to Williamsport, Pa. for the Little Leauge World Series. 

News
Police charge man identifying himself as Cowboy’s player Lucky Whitehead

Lucky Whitehead of the Dallas Cowboys was recently charged with petit larceny and wanted for failure to appear in court, or so Prince William County Police thought. According to police, an individual arrested for those crimes, not possessing identification verbally identified himself as Rodney Darnell Whitehead, Jr. to include the date of birth and social security number. 

From Prince William County police:

Upon reviewing the June 22, 2017 arrest of an individual named “Rodney Darnell Whitehead, Jr.”, the police department is confident that the man charged with petit larceny, and who is subsequently being sought on an active warrant for failure to appear in court, is not Lucky Whitehead of the Dallas Cowboys.

The man charged on the morning of June 22 was not in possession of identification at the time of the encounter; however, did verbally provide identifying information to officers, which included a name, date of birth, and social security number matching that of Rodney Darnell Whitehead, Jr. Officers then checked this information through the Virginia Department of Motor Vehicles (DMV) database. The DMV photo on file was then used to compare to the man who was in custody. (more…)

News
Surovell: Voluntary background check system is a failure

In 2016, the General Assembly enacted a legislation requiring the Virginia State Police to staff gun shows and be available to conduct voluntary background checks upon request by private, non-federally licensed gun sellers as part of a broader compromise on concealed weapon permits. The law has been a total failure.

The legislation required the state to spend $300,000 to hire three new Virginia State Police employees to be present at all gun shows. What have we got for our $300,000?

In January, The Daily Press reported that as of January 1, 2017, one person was denied a purchase at 41 gun shows after thirty-nine checks. (more…)

News
Call if you can, but Text to 911 is now available in Prince William

From Prince William County:

Calling is still the best way to contact 911 in an emergency, but in certain situations, a text might be better. The Prince William County Office of Public Safety Communications can now accept text-to-911 emergency messages from AT&T, Sprint, T-Mobile and Verizon Wireless customers who find themselves needing assistance in Prince William County and the cities of Manassas and Manassas Park. The service should only be used when someone has a physical disability or special need where calling is not possible or when speaking out loud would put the caller in danger.

Certain communities will find text-to-911 particularly helpful, said Prince William Public Safety Communications Director Captain Alfred Miller. People who are deaf or hard of hearing, those with speech disabilities or who are unable to speak, and community service or suicide hotlines will find the service useful.

The texts can be up to 140 characters and should include the location and type of emergency. They should be short, with simple words, and without abbreviations or slang. People should be prepared to answer questions and follow directions provided by the 911 call taker. They should not text and drive. (more…)



Sell for FREE, shop at the Chick-fil-A Bristow Community Appreciation Yard Sale

Chick-fil-A Bristow will host its first-annual Community Appreciation Yard Sale on Saturday, August 5.

The community-staple restaurant will offer spaces for area residents to sell their wares at no charge — that’s right, FREE!

Each participant will be given a parking space where they can set up to sell their wares. Participants must bring their own table, up to a 10×10-sized tent, as well as bring items to sell, and remove any leftover items.

The yard sale is open to residents, crafters, and the community. There will also be a bounce house set up for children during the community yard sale.

Electricity to the vendor area and spaces will not be provided.

The event takes place from 9 a.m. to 3 p.m. Participants should head over to Chick-fil-A Bristow’s website to register (click on Aug. 5) and RSVP to grab your FREE space.

News
Slushies keep players cool at Little League championship

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TRIANGLE — The concession stand is easily one of the busiest places at the Virginia Little League Championships.

And the business comes in waves.

“You go through ketchup like crazy,” said Valerie Barlow, one of the volunteers working today where games are being played at Fuller Heights Park in Triangle.

And that ketchup: It’s going on everything from cheeseburgers, hot dogs, to pretzels. There’s also cheese — the gooey kind for topping pretzels or nachos.

“We’ve got all kinds of weird candy, too, like gushers and Warheads that are sour,” she added.

The sweet treat that’s selling the most on a hot summer afternoon with temperatures in the mid-80s: cherry or blue raspberry slushies.

It’s a way for Little League Baseball players from all over the state, and their parents to keep cool. So far, volunteers here have used more than 800 pounds of ice. They’ll use nearly 200 more before the tournament is scheduled to end tomorrow.

If you’re following the games, taking photos, and want to report on the action to our readers, email photos and game info to news@potomaclocal.com.

News
Mark your calendar for the Walk to End Alzheimer on October 21

Good morning Prince William – Leesylvania State Park is looking for volunteers every Monday until Labor Day 10:30 a.m.-4:30 p.m. for lots of fun clean-up projects. Gather your work clothes, boots, water bottle, and friends to join in the fun. Please call (703) 583-6904 to learn more.

· Brain Injury Services is looking for a volunteer of Pakistani heritage to walk 1-2 times a month with a gentleman who lives in Springfield. What a great way to share your experiences with another. Please call Michelle at (703) 451-8881 ext. 232 to learn more

· Think cool fall weather! Mark your calendar for the Walk to End Alzheimer on Saturday, October 21 at the Harris Pavilion. Volunteers are needed with event set-up, clean-up, refreshments, route monitoring and much more. Please email Ben at: bedonnelly@alz.org to learn more.

· The National Counseling Group is collecting school supplies for at-risk kids. Items needed include backpacks, notebooks, pens, pencils to name just a few. Donation boxes at set up at each one of their locations including 9301 Forest Point Circle in Manassas. (more…)

News
Little League Championship kicks off at Marine Corps museum

Parents and children gathered on Thursday night for a dinner at the National Museum of the Marine Corps to mark the opening of the Virginia Little League Championship. 

The dinner was a ticketed-only event and attracted players and their families from all over the Commonwealth — some as far as eight hours away. 

The tournament will be held this week near the museum at Fuller Heights Park. 

These photos are by Catherine Hanafin: 

 

Traffic
Driverless cars to be tested in E-ZPass Express Lanes

Automation is coming to Northern Virginia’s E-ZPass Express Lanes.

Driverless cars, or CAV’s (connected and autonomous vehicles) will soon be tested on the E-ZPass Express Lanes on Interstates 95 and 495 “during non-rush periods at times when the Lanes are closed or traffic is not heavy.”

More in a press release from Transurban, the operator of the E-ZPass Express Lanes:

Authorization to begin testing connected vehicles and vehicle automation technologies on the 495 and 95 Express Lanes was approved earlier this week by the Commonwealth Transportation Board. The Commissioner of Highways agreed to enter into a memorandum of understanding with the Virginia Department of Transportation, the Federal Highway Administration and Transurban, the operator of the 495 and 95 Express Lanes, to study how connected and autonomous vehicles (CAVs) may improve safety and mobility. The program will enable the partnership to perform research, and develop and trial demonstration tests on the Express Lanes to examine real-world applications for the developing technologies. Program development is scheduled to begin later this month with on-road tests beginning as soon as summer 2018.

(more…)

News
Dumfries immigrant faces deportation

DUMFRIES — A Dumfries man now faces deportation from the U.S. after a visit to a federal immigration and customs office. 

From a press release: 

Fifty-seven-year old Juan Gutierrez Palomino will be deported to Peru after being detained during a routine ICE check-in in June. Juan is currently being held at the Farmville detention center.

A cherished member of his family, Juan has no criminal history. His wife and children are all U.S. citizens. His a 21-year old son is now serving in the Air Force and 13-year old daughter is an excellent student attending middle school. 

Juan was doing exactly as ordered when he reported to his ICE check-in. Now, he’s being treated as a criminal and will be forced to leave his family behind. Community members are preparing a fast and a vigil in Dumfries, where he lived with his family, on Saturday. Congregations throughout the state will be recognizing Pastor Juan and his family in their worship services to raise awareness.

We’re told, Gutierrez Palomino has lived in the U.S. for 21 years, and has not been a U.S. citizen during that time. Since 2011, Gutierrez Palomino has sought an “adjustment of status” from the Federal Government that would have permitted him temporary status to live with his wife, who has citizenship.

The fact that Gutierrez Palomino’s wife is a U.S. citizen does not mean he would have been granted automatic citizenship, according to a spokeswoman from the Virginia Interfaith Center for Public Policy, which sent us the press release.

At the June 18 visit to the ICE office in Northern Virginia, Gutierrez Palomino was detained and taken to Farmville.

We’ve asked Central Virginia Sanctuary Network for more information about where and when the vigil will be held. We’ll post that information when/if we receive it. 

News
County will acquire Potomac trail right of way through wildlife refuges

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WOODBRIDGE — Prince William County officials today will sign off on a 50-year right of way plan to build new segments of the Potomac Heritage Scenic Trail.

The new trail sections will run through the Occoquan Bay and Featherstone national wildlife refuges in Woodbridge, adding to some 13 miles of the trial already constructed in the county.

When completed, up to 45 miles of the trail along the Potomac River between the Chesapeake Bay and Pennsylvania will traverse the county.

The trail winds into Prince William from Fairfax County on a footbridge in Occoquan. In Woodbridge, the trail traverses urban terrain in the northern section and crosses Route 1 into Belmont Bay. Further south at Featherstone, the trail will incorporate the entrance Rippon Virginia Railway Express station.

“The Potomac Heritage Scenic Trail is not just your traditional scenic trail. We’re also incorporating everyday human uses, like transportation,” said Ryan Delaney, a trails planner with the Prince William County Government.

The trail will also be a new way to see the Potomac River, along with the national wildlife refuges, long hidden from view from view along busy Route 1 and Interstate 95. (more…)

News
Price for senior pass to National Parks to increase

Since 1994 the National Parks and Federal Recreational Lands Senior Pass has been $10, but as a result of legislation passed in December of 2016, that price will increase to $80. The price hike is expected to take effect August 28 2017, so seniors are encouraged to act soon if they wish to purchase a senior pass. 

 

From Prince William Forest Park:

Seniors over age 62 may want to purchase a lifetime pass soon. The price goes up on August 28th, 2017. To qualify, you must be an American citizen or permanent resident of the United States and pay the $10 fee. This pass is a lifetime pass to National Parks and other federal recreation lands. When the supply at the Visitor Center is out, it’s out. (more…)

News
Suspect in felony child neglect eludes police

A woman, previously arrested for attempting to burn a mattress, is wanted by police for suspected felony child neglect.

From Prince William County police:

Felony Child Neglect – On July 15 at 12:24 p.m., officers responded to the 3500 block of Briarwood Drive in Dumfries to investigate a child neglect. When officers arrived, they located a 2-year-old boy and an 11-month old girl unattended outside of their apartment. Upon further investigation, officers located the children’s residence where the babysitter, later identified as the accused, was found asleep inside. (more…)

News
Message to the Prince William Chief of Police: Help us in Williamstown

WOODBRIDGE — A small but vocal minority brought the headlining issue to a public meeting with Prince William County’s police chief.

The message: There are problems in Williamstown, a neighborhood in Dumfries.

“No one has got hurt yet, but I’m afraid somebody will,” one resident told Potomac Local on the condition of anonymity in fear of retaliation.

In all, at least six Dumfries residents came to “A Conversation with the Chief” held Monday at the Ferlazzo government building in Woodbridge to voice their concerns about Williamstown. They say a gang of men ranging in ages between their 20s and 30s regularly walk up and down the streets, discharge firearms, loiter in the culdesacs, and intimidate others.

“They see you walking, they pick you out, and they know you’re not with them, not part of that lifestyle,” another resident told Potomac Local on the condition of anonymity,

Some of the men regularly walk up and down Old Triangle Road, loiter at bus stops, harass passersby, and lean on cars.

“I yelled at one of them to get off the car and and said ‘did you make the payment on [the car] this month?” one resident told a Prince William police officer. (more…)

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