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More than ‘Irish nonsense,’ MurLarkey uses old-world infusion methods in oak barrels

Prince William Beer (and Spirits) Trail

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

Locally sourced and handcrafted in the heart of Bristow, MurLarkey’s officially opened its doors on January 6th, welcoming all who enjoy spirits and a good time.

Guests who visit MurLarkey will notice a beautiful array of names for their spirits featured on their website such as imagination, divine clarity, and justice. Spirit names are taken seriously at MurLarkey’s, just as seriously as the process of naming the establishment was.

A brainchild of first cousins Mike Larkin and Thomas Murray, they struggled to find a name that they could both agree on as well as pay homage to their Irish roots.

“After pondering the names Murray, Larkin and Kelly over a few drinks, they eventually came up with Mur.Lar.key,” said MurLarkey’s Founder and CEO Thomas Murray. “The coincidental play on the word “malarkey” (Irish for nonsense) made it all the better.”

One of their most popular products is their lemon infused Clemoncy whiskey. According to Murray, a restaurant in Fairfax used MurLarkey’s whiskey as a base and created the “Clemonade” — a drink so popular, that it spread from the Fairfax bar scene to Arlington.

MurLarkey’s is locally sourced and handcrafted, but they take it one step further. All of their infusions are done using old-world infusion methods in oak barrels.

“MurLarkey’s authenticity sets it apart from virtually any other distillery in the area,” said Murray. “From an award-winning pure potato vodka to all-natural infused whiskeys, there’s a spirit to please every pallet.”

Black bear struck and killed on Route 610

A black bear was struck and killed by a car traveling on Route 610 Garrisonville Road in North Stafford on Thursday night. 

The bear was walking in the area of Joshua Road when it was struck by a car, killing it instantly, according to a Stafford County Sheriff’s Office spokesman. 

The car that struck the bear was damaged to the point a tow truck was called to remove it from the roadway, according to the spokesman. 

The occupants of the car were not injured.

Water’s End Brewery knows ‘sometimes you just need a Damn Beer’

Prince William Beer Trail

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

After Prince William County had changed a zoning code that longer restricted breweries to industrial areas and allowed them to open in neighborhood shopping districts, Water’s End Brewery chose Dillingham Square in Lake Ridge, and the rest is history.

Owners Zach Mote, Ryan Sharkey, and Josh Fournelle are dedicated owners; you can always find them behind the bar serving customers. As of now, the brewery doesn’t have any other employees, but Ryan Sharkey, one of the three co-owners, noted that when they do start hiring employees, an owner will always remain present.

“We receive constant feedback and the raw experience of serving our customers face to face makes us focus intensely on producing the highest quality beer we can,” said Sharkey. “Our brewer has actually taken a “taproom vote” on which style of beer to brew the next day- that’s not something that would happen at most other breweries.”

Their most popular drink is “Damn Beer,” which they promise to always have on the menu. Sharkey describes it as an “easy-drinking golden ale that is often referred to as their ‘gateway beer.”

Sharkey notes that many customers are new to craft beer and it can be difficult to distinguish a brew that customers like. The Damn Beer gives an easy introduction for newcomers and provides a break from stronger flavors seen in stouts and other darker brews.

“Sometimes you just need a Damn Beer, and our craft beer aficionados will order it too as a break from the big flavors of some other beers,” said Sharkey.

There’s also a method behind the naming madness of each brew courtesy of their brewer, Zach Mote.
“Our Adventure Hat, strong American black ale, describes the hat Zach would like to wear while on brew days on the back deck,” said Sharkey. “You’ll find the hat proudly hanging behind the bar.”

The HopDrop, a white IPA, describes Water’s End logo; Sharkey explains that it’s a water droplet transforming to hop cone as “water ends and the beer begins.” Some names will also have references to the community.

Make sure to also keep an eye out for their Beer Club, one that sports 270+ members who can enjoy larger pours, discounts, special events, and beer releases.

More: Comics, sci-fi, and beer. A one of a kind brewery in Prince William.

Improved I-95 interchange at Quantico would improve access from toll lanes

Plans for an improved interchange on Interstate 95 at Quantico are under review.

Engineers are looking at ways to increase access to Quantico Marine Corps Base. Options in the plan include access to and from the I-95 E-ZPass Express Lanes via a flyover, like the Joplin Road access, or a slip ramp that allows for smoother transitions, according to Amanda Baxter, a spokeswoman for the Virginia Department of Transportation.

A northbound flyover exit from the Express Lanes to the existing Russel Road exit off I-95 is proposed, according to Baxter. This movement will allow those heading to Quantico use the Express Lanes if they enter them at the proposed terminus at Exit 133 at Route 17 or from a new park and ride lot being constructed at Courthouse Road (Rt 630) at Exit 140.

There is also a southbound facing slip ramp that’s being evaluated by VDOT just south of Russell Road that will allow vehicles to “slip” into the Express Lanes from the regular travel lanes. Both of these options are under consideration and no decision will be made until sometime this summer. (more…)

Updated: Drone finds suspect after partial school lockdown

Details are few, but this is what we know about a partial lockdown affecting two schools in Stafford County. 


From Stafford County Schools spokeswoman Sherrie Johnson: 

Margaret Brent Elementary School and Mountain View High School are under a partial lockdown due to police activity in the area. 
A statement posted to the schools’ websites: 
“Mountain View High School and Margaret Brent Elementary School are on a partial lockdown due to police activity in the area. Students will resume normal activity inside the building; however, there are no outside activities at this time.  A partial lockdown allows for instruction to continue while increasing the safety and security of students and staff in the building. We will keep you informed of the situation. Please be assured student and staff safety is a top priority for Stafford County Public Schools.”


Two partial lockdowns at Stafford County Public Schools have been lifted, and a road closed due to police activity has reopened. 
Still no new information about the police incident. 
From Stafford schools: 
“The partial lockdown at Mountain View High and Margaret Brent Elementary Schools due to police activity in the area is lifted.  Students will resume normal activities. Please be assured student and staff safety is a top priority for Stafford County Public Schools.”
From Stafford sheriff:


A drone helped investigators find the man caused a partial lockdown at two Stafford County schools today.

Police used the drone to identify the suspect they say fired shots at a home on Tacketts Mill Road about 10:05 a.m. A woman called 911 to report that a man became angry and then firing shots into a car parked on the property.

The woman and her young son were at home at the time shots fired. Stafford authorities went to the scene where witnesses told them they saw a man fire shots into the vehicle and walk back inside the home, according to a Stafford sheriff’s spokeswoman.

The woman and her son were able to escape the house without injury. Deputies then had to determine if the shooter was still inside the home and later learned that he was not.

Stafford deputies erected a perimeter that covered a section of western Stafford County from Rockhill Church Road & Dunbar Drive to the Fauquier County Line.

The sheriff’s office used SWAT teams, K9 units, and a drone to search for a man known as “Patrova.” Police later learned that name was an alias.

Later, police used the drone to spot a suspect along Barrington Woods Boulevard. A SWAT team moved in and arrested the suspect without incident.

Jeffrey Owens is charged with Felony Possession of a Firearm and Reckless Handling of a Firearm and is incarcerated at the Rappahannock Regional Jail on no bond.

Owens was also wanted in connection to weapons and a probation violation, according to the Stafford sheriff’s office.

Shootout in Stafford: 3 arrested, investigation continues


From the Stafford County Sheriff’s Office: 

“On May 26, 2017, at approximately 7:31 PM, patrol units responded to North Stafford as multiple witnesses reported that two vehicles were exchanging gunfire while traveling westbound on Garrisonville Road.  

Both vehicles were silver; one was a Mercedes, and the other was a Chrysler.  At 7:33 PM the Chrysler was involved in an accident with another vehicle near the intersection of Garrisonville Road and Shelton Shop Road.  The two male occupants of the suspect vehicle then fled the area on foot.

 The passenger of the Chrysler was immediately detained by an off-duty law enforcement officer.  He was identified as Quanze Lejaun Todd and was taken into custody. The other vehicle involved in the accident sustained damage, but no one was injured.

Responding officers were able to locate a handgun in close proximity to the Chrysler. A search of the vehicle recovered suspected narcotics in the form of pills.   

The tag of the silver Mercedes was provided by another witness and that vehicle was registered to an address on Coventry Court in southern Stafford.  Patrol units responded to that area to be on the lookout for the Mercedes.   (more…)

Excursion train ride tickets for the Manassas Heritage Railway Festival are selling fast. Get yours today.

The Heritage Railway Festival is back in Manassas for its 23rd year! Enjoy the rich railroad history of Manassas Saturday, June 3rd from 10 a.m. – 3 p.m. surrounding the Train Depot.

A day full of family-friendly fun, the Heritage Railway Festival will feature a community stage on West Street hosting the Bull Run Cloggers, Wildlife Ambassadors, Premier Martial Arts, and the Suburban Gypsies Belly Dance Club.

Take an excursion train ride to Clifton and back at 10 a.m., 11 a.m., noon, and 1 p.m. The morning trains at 10 a.m. and 11 a.m. will feature character Chase from the popular cartoon Paw Patrol and the afternoon train rides at noon and 1 p.m. will feature Princess Belle. The 10 a.m. train ride has already sold out but remaining trains have tickets available for purchase online or in person at the Train Depot with ticket prices ranging from $5-$6.

After your train excursion, walk over to the Harris Pavilion and view the model train displays or walk along West Street, Prince William Street, and Battle Street to enjoy delicious food vendors, shop novelty railway crafters, and more!

The Museum Lawn will also be featuring the Greater Manassas Women’s Club canned sculpture challenge “ExtravaCANza” where organizations will be creating sculptures made entirely out of canned goods to resemble a train theme. Stop by and watch the progress as these canned goods become sculptures.

Whether you love trains and railroads or are just looking for some family fun, this event is a great way to spend your Saturday and see all that Historic Downtown Manassas has to offer. For more information on this and other events in the City of Manassas, go to

Express lanes entrance will be closed overnight

From VDOT: 

“Interstate 95 northbound drivers are advised that the first entrance to I-95 Express Lanes in Stafford County will be closed for several hours overnight for installation of a sign structure.

The northbound entrance to I-95 Express Lanes near Exit 143/Garrisonville Road will be closed from midnight to 4 a.m. on Friday, May 26.

Northbound drivers can access I-95 Express Lanes at the next available entrance, near Exit 152/Dumfries. 

The sign structure is part of the ongoing I-95 Express Lanes Southern Terminus Extension project. The project is extending I-95 Express Lanes approximately 2.5 miles beyond the flyover ramp just north of Garrisonville Road. The new southbound exit ramp is scheduled to open by early 2018, and the northbound entrance ramp will open in summer 2018.”

Construction set to begin on Northern Virginia veterans care center

Northern Virginia veterans will soon have a new place to recover and retire.

A new Puller Veterans Care Center will be built on a 30-acre site at Vint Hill Road and Vint Hill Parkway in Fauquier County, just across the Prince William County line.

The one and a half story veterans center will house 128 veterans and will serve as a place to care for inpatient care for veterans going through medical rehabilitation and for those who have Alzheimer’s.

The duration of stays for veterans at the facility and those who are admitted will be based on the medical needs of the patient. Veterans needing memory care could conceivably spend the rest of their lives at the center.

The veterans care center is named after the Puller family which includes Marine Lt. Gen. Lewis B. “Chesty” Puller who fought in World War II, his son and Pulitzer Prize-winning author Lt. Lewis Burwell Puller Jr., who served in Vietnam, and the recently retired former Virginia State Senator Toddy Puller, the ex-wife of Puller, Jr.

Construction on the center is expected to begin late this year, and an opening date for the facility is slated for late 2019. (more…)