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This week is devoted to infertility awareness

For millions of women, it’s an issue they’re all too familiar with and it’s something they deal with every day.

April 22-28 is designated National Infertility Awareness Week. The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention estimate 1 in 8 couples have trouble conceiving, that’s 15% of American couples.

It’s something Dr. Richard Jenet, Chairman of Obstetrics and Gynecology at the Women’s Health Center at Sentara Northern Virginia Medical Center and practicing physician at About Women OB/GYN, sees too often.

“We often times have to really calm people down. People get really anxious if they try for one month and haven’t gotten pregnant,” he explains.

Dr. Jenet says when a patient comes to him wanting to start a family, he starts with the basics – getting blood work and taking both general and reproductive histories.

“We talk about some healthy life choices and have people try to get pregnant on their own. Unless there’s something obvious, we don’t talk about infertility until after a year of trying.”

Most couples get pregnant within that year, but if not, Jenet starts looking at other factors, “Several items are taken into account: age, weight, health conditions and lifestyle, just to name a few.”

If there are no obvious problems, Dr. Jenet says that’s when a reproductive endocrinologist is recommended to help pinpoint the issue.

But, Jenet says the advances in medicine, over his nearly 30 years in practice, allow women more alternatives than ever before, “There are more medications. There are more treatments. There are a lot more options.” And, that means more hope for women trying to get pregnant.

To learn more about OB/GYN or endocrinology services near you, call 1-800-SENTARA or go to sentara.com.

Roofing contractors in our region are backlogged thanks to March wind storm

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Tour four beautiful homes at the Clifton Homes Tour for Charity

The Clifton Community Woman’s Club will host the 46th Annual Clifton Homes Tour and Silent Auction on Friday, May 18. Tour: 10 a.m. – 4 p.m. Silent Auction: 10 a.m. – 5 p.m. at the Clifton Presbyterian Church. Proceeds benefit the Club’s 501(c)(3) Charitable Trust and are distributed to local scholarships and charities.

The Tour offers guided tours of four beautiful homes in Clifton. Visitors can tour a farmhouse built in 1900 with furniture and antiques specific to Virginia. In another home, bold colors and true Williamsburg style combine to create a fun family atmosphere. A third home balances natural elements and 18th-century proportion. A fourth home is a Georgian hilltop manor with Virginia-made furniture and original artwork.

Free guided tours are offered for two historic churches: Clifton Baptist Church (1910) and Clifton Primitive Baptist Church (1871). Other events with free admission include a Silent Auction, Trinkets and Treasures, and wreath sale at the Clifton Presbyterian Church.

Tour tickets may be purchased in advance for $25 at local businesses: in Manassas at Flower Gallery; in Clifton at Adler’s Art & Frame, Belle Jar Design, and Hydrangea of Clifton; in Centreville at Banner’s Hallmark; in Burke at Five Star Hair, The Picket Fence, and The Yarn Barn; in Fairfax at Twinbrook Floral Design. Tickets are also available online for $30 at cliftoncwc.org or at Clifton Presbyterian Church (12748 Richards Ln, Clifton, VA 20124) the day of the tour.

Please visit cliftoncwc.org or contact Kay at kaygilbert@cox.net for more information.


We need a freelance community reporter

We’re seeking a freelance reporter who has a passion for community and who isn’t afraid to pick up the phone, use email, or dig on the web to get details.

Our ideal writer will be familiar with the Prince William County, Virginia region to include the cities of Manassas and Manassas Park.

They will be able to write about local government, schools, business, events and features.

Much if not all of the writing can be completed while working from home.

Experience gained while writing for a community news publication is preferred but not required.

Interested?

Send your resume, links to three of your best articles, and contact info to Uriah Kiser.

 



Business leaders, entrepreneurs to provide an interactive experience which will prepare participants to create/grow ventures successfully

CenterFuse and Innovate Manassas is set to launch the first LaB Bootcamp 101.

The boot camp starts May 2 and runs until July 25.

The Bootcamp is held every other Wednesday evening doors open at 6:30 p.m. until 9 p.m. The cost for the eight-session program is $200.

The program is ideal for those individuals in a home based business or any startup including those in the idea phase. Any people with the passion, vision, and insight to start and grow a business.

The LaB Bootcamp offers assistance and training in:

• Challenges and opportunities for new and growing ventures
• Innovative marketing
• Business Concepts and ideas
• Legal considerations
• Sustainability
• Financing the business
• Accounting
• Fundamentals and operations
• Using technology & social media
• Intellectual Property
• …and much more!

The LaB Bootcamp is a series of intensive education sessions designed to help entrepreneurs and aspiring entrepreneurs develop the skills necessary to create successful, growth-oriented businesses.

A team of business leaders and guest entrepreneurs provide an interactive experience which will prepare participants to create/grow ventures successfully. Attendees also receive one-on-one consulting assistance.

Focused, intense, and packed with useful material, LaB Bootcamp is tailored to aspiring entrepreneurs, helping them answer the following questions:

• What is a good business concept?
• How can I determine if my business idea is a good one?
• Do I really need a business plan and, if so, how can I write a great one?
• What do I need to know about my customers and the market, and how can I get answers?
• Where do I get financing?
• How do I make sense of the numbers and which numbers really matter?
• What is a business model, and does my business model make sense?
• What is guerrilla marketing? Are there ways to do more with marketing while spending less?
• What does it really take to succeed in business by myself?
• Where do I go to get the information I need to organize my new business?

A team of experienced business leaders all successful entrepreneurs work with participants, introducing ideas and concepts, and showing you how to apply them to a current or potential business. At the end of the eight sessions, participants will have completed a business plan and have the opportunity to pitch their idea and plan to a group of potential investors.

Win four tickets to see ‘Avengers: Infinity War’ to benefit Haymarket Regional Food Pantry

A special screening of Marvel’s new Avengers: Infinity War movie will be held on Thursday, April 26 — a day before the movie is released in theatres.

The special screening will benefit the Haymarket Regional Food Pantry.

Potomac Local subscribers have a chance to WIN a family-four pack of tickets to the show courtesy of Simple Luxuries Travel

From an email. 

I wanted to make you aware of a community event here in Manassas that is designed to help stock the shelves of the Haymarket Regional Food Pantry.

Simple Luxuries Travel is hosting a private, invitation-only preview screening of Avengers: Infinity War on April 26 at 7 p.m. in Manassas.

We would like to offer you a family 4-pack of tickets to giveaway to one of your viewers/subscribers. How you choose to pick the winner is at your discretion, we would just need the name and email of the winner to get them their tickets since all tickets to the event will be electronic.

With Disney releasing the Avengers and the Incredibles movies this year we want to use this superhero theme to reach out and encourage people to be their own superhero and help those families in need. Many people look at the holidays to help those fighting hunger but this need must be addressed each day for some families.

The screening will be held at Manassas Stadium 14 & IMAX, located at 11380 Bullock Drive near Manassas.

The winning Potomac Local subscriber will be notified via email on Friday, April 20.

Become a Potomac Local subscriber today!

Charges filed after electronic threat made against Hylton High School student

From Prince William police: 

Threats of Bodily Harm | Threats on School Grounds – On April 10 at 5:26PM, officers responded to a residence located in Woodbridge to investigate a threatening message against a student of Hylton High School located at 14051 Spriggs Rd in Woodbridge (22193). The investigation revealed that the victim received several threatening messages communicated over the social media app “Instagram” from two user accounts that suggested an act of violence against the student while at the school.

On April 11, another student reported to a School Resource Officer (SRO) that he had found graffiti written on a bathroom stall also suggesting an act of violence at the school. Upon further investigation of both incidents, detectives with the Intel Unit and the SRO determined that the same student who found and reported the threatening graffiti had also fraudulently created the two Instagram accounts. Further investigation also determined that the same suspect wrote the graffiti on the bathroom stall then reported it. Detectives subsequently determined that the risk to the school was not credible. Following the investigation, the SRO obtained and served petitions for the student on April 13.

Charged on April 13: [Juvenile]

A 16-year-old male of Woodbridge

Charged with  communicating a threat of bodily harm over electronic means, threats of serious bodily injury on school property, and destruction of property

Court Date: Pending | Status: Held at a Juvenile Detention Center

Potomac Local Parent of the Month: Carrie

Potomac Local Parents is a monthly column that looks at life through the eyes of real parents. This month, we interview Carrie.

What time you do wake up?

5:45am

What are your children’s names and ages?

Four boys: Quentin 14, Christian 13, Xavier 10 and Brandon 7.

What’s the most difficult part about your morning routine?

Getting the kids out the door for school! It’s hardest to get the kids up in the morning (multiple attempts), share the bathroom (they lock their brothers out) and get them to bus stops on time. They have three separate bus stop times. Our mornings are chaos!

What is your morning beauty or grooming routine?

Shower. Luckily, I work from home.

Are you a coffee or tea person?

Coffee. If I’m lucky I can make a cup of coffee before I start work.  

What do you do once the kids are in school?

I have run a small daycare for the last sixteen years. I watch four kids, all two and three-year-olds.I have my first dropoff for childcare right after my oldest two leave. By the time my third and fourth go to school, I have all my daycare kids here.

What is the biggest challenge of trying to get work done – any work – with your schedule and responsibilities?

Lots! Juggling projects and activities for all the children. Having a 12-hour workday. All four of my sons play travel sports, too.

What do you wear during the work week?

Scrubs

What’s the craziest thing that happened to you so far this week?

I had a much needed, impromptu day off on Monday. I didn’t take off, but I had two kids on vacation for spring break, and the other two called out. It’s very rare! I went to the gym with my oldest two sons and took them out to lunch for some quality time.

Do you have pets?

Yes – two dogs, two cats and a rabbit, all rescues.

How do you get through the hard times?

Staying busy, organizing and lots of caffeine!

What’s your favorite color?

Lavender

What kind of car do you drive?

Mom minivan – Town and Country, and I love it!

If you could be any animal, what would you be and why?

Lion, because he’s king of the jungle.   

 



Sentara Heart & Vascular Center introduces new minimally invasive technique for atrial fibrillation

WOODBRIDGE — On Monday, April 2, 2018, Sentara Northern Virginia Medical Center ushered in a new level of care with the introduction of left-sided pulmonary vein ablation. The Sentara Heart & Vascular Team, led by Dr. Aysha Arshad, Medical Director of Electrophysiology, performed the first of its kind procedure for the hospital.

“This is wonderful for our community,” says Dr. Arshad. “This means the beginning of more complex procedures in the Electrophysiology Lab here at Sentara Northern Virginia Medical Center, which opens up these vital services to members of our community. They won’t have to travel long distances for care because our highly experienced staff and physicians are the same that are working in all the top hospital centers in the area.”

Left-side pulmonary vein ablation or pulmonary vein isolation is used to treat Atrial Fibrillation, also known as AFib. AFib is a type of heart arrhythmia or irregular heartbeat that an estimated seven million Americans live with every day.

In atrial fibrillation, disorganized electrical signals originate in the heart’s upper chambers, or atria, causing the rhythm to be irregular. Because the contractions are not coordinated as in a normal heartbeat, the heart does not pump blood effectively to the rest of the body causing patients to experience a racing or quivering heartbeat, dizziness, shortness of breath and often feel tired.

People with AFib have a five times greater risk for stroke. 

After living with the condition for three-years, Woodbridge resident Claudia Warszawski, was looking for relief.

“I’m a very active 67-year-old. I walk three days a week at the mall and I just couldn’t keep up my pace. I’d have to stop and it was irritating,” said Warszawski.

After consulting with the grandmother of five and reviewing her history, Dr. Arshad shared she was a perfect candidate for the procedure. 

As the Electrophysiology program at Sentara Heart & Vascular Center has grown, so have the services. Left-sided ablation is the latest advancement of the program. In ablation, areas of tissue in the heart that cause arrhythmias are destroyed. 

“In left-sided procedures, where AFib comes from, it involves tackling circuits on the left side of the heart. There’s no natural passage to the left side of the heart, so we enter through a vein in the leg and travel to the chest where we make a tiny puncture in the interatrial septum with a small needle and pass a catheter through that tiny hole to the left side of the heart. From there we create a 3D map of the heart and get to the circuits that cause AFib,” explains Dr. Arshad.

After the procedure is completed and the catheter removed, the tiny hole heals on its own over the next four weeks. A chip, implanted in the chest at the time of the procedure, allows real-time monitoring of the patient.

“It’s the whole advent of real-time telemedicine,” explains Dr. Arshad, “The device will track her rhythm all day and at night transcribe it into a report, which will be emailed to me that evening. The device downloads all that data so I’ll know how she’s going to do long-term.”

As for Warszawski, days after her procedure she’s already feeling better, “This gives me a new lease to live the life I want before I was tired and always had heart palpitations and flutters. Now, I can’t even feel my heart beating, and that’s a good thing!”

If you’re experiencing a racing, fluttering, pounding or irregular heartbeat, don’t ignore those symptoms, find a healthcare provider at 1-800-SENTARA or Sentara.com to schedule your exam.   

Last call for entries ‘Help a Horse’ Day

From a press release: 

The Prince William County Animal Shelter’s annual “Help a Horse” Day is Sunday, April 29. To help observe this important day, the Animal Shelter is sponsoring an art contest for middle school students who live in Prince William County. This is the last call for entries!

The theme is “Horse Feathers,” and all artwork must include an equine animal and be the original work of the exhibitor. Computer-generated artwork is not accepted.

Entries are limited to 2- or 3-dimensional artwork. Colored pencil, ink, and crayon are the suggested materials. The minimum size of the artwork is 5”x7” – and it can be no larger than 11”x14”. Artwork must be framed and ready to hang. Each piece must have the exhibitor’s name, address and phone number secured on the back.

Please bring submissions with completed registration forms to the Prince William County Animal Shelter during normal operating hours. The Shelter’s address is 14807 Bristow Road, Manassas (20112). Entries will be accepted April 17-22. The artwork will be on display at the Shelter from Tuesday, April 24, through Sunday, April 29, and will be judged prior to the event, which starts at noon.

Ribbons will be presented for “champion” and “popular vote,” as well as first place through sixth place. Winning artwork will be displayed at the McCoart County Government Building from May 25, 2018, until June 1, 2018.

Contestants may pick up their artwork on April 29, between 4 and 5 p.m. All artwork, other than the winning entries, MUST be picked up by 5 p.m. Winning entries may be picked up from the Animal Shelter after June 6, 2018.

To see the 2018 contest guidelines, including the registration form, please visit the Animal Shelter website at www.pwcgov.org/animalshelter.



Chick-fil-A Bristow turns 9!

Chick-fil-A Bristow turns nine years old this week. Check out these other awesome anniversary week specials.

And, don’t miss the party coming this Saturday.

Chick-fil-A Bristow is located at 9939 Sowder Village Square in Manassas. It’s open 6 a.m to 10 p.m. and is closed Sunday.

And the Winners Are: Micron Technology, Inc., Tech Company of the Year

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Make downsizing a step up for the senior in your life

Seniors have specific challenges that we often don’t think about when we’re younger. One of those is downsizing. Often, after the kids are grown and have moved out or a larger home just becomes too much to manage, seniors opt for smaller living spaces. This transition can prove stressful for all concerned, but especially the senior homeowner. Here are some ways you can help ease that move from big to small.

Strategize – This is the first step after the downsizing decision is made. Think about reasons for downsizing and formulate goals with the senior homeowner. Reasons could include financial, accessibility, health, proximity to family, maintenance or something else. Set goals that match the reasons. Would a one-level, two-bedroom home three miles from the grandchildren work well if it had wheelchair accessibility? Or would a condo be a better option? Is assisted living the best choice? Don’t make any decisions before you have a strategy.

Bring in the pros – You have your expertise, and others have theirs. Get a team of professionals behind you to help ease the transition for everyone concerned. Start with a good real estate agent to help with selling and buying. Be sure the agent is familiar with senior moves and up-to-date on communities that support seniors. Ask people you trust for recommendations on lenders and moving companies that are experienced in downsizing.

Manage the process – As a loved one of the senior who is downsizing, it can be difficult to hand over the reins to someone else. But sometimes, it’s better to let a third-party oversee the details. Timing the move, changing over utilities, notifying doctors and others of the new address, organizing packing, etc. can become overwhelming. Consider hiring a transition specialist or moving manager to coordinate the many aspects that go into moving.

Get prepped – Downsizing isn’t just about packing and shipping, unpacking and organizing. It’s about acclimating to a life in a new setting. Help your senior loved one by preparing them for what to expect. Talk about emotions and concerns. Get a plan of the smaller home and draw out where belongings will go. This will help determine what needs to be given away, as well as help the senior homeowner adapt emotionally and physically.

Respect belongings Downsizing usually means you can’t keep everything, but that doesn’t mean everything should get tossed. Once you have helped your senior homeowner separate items into keep/give away/sell/throw away, pack what is going. Then ask your senior to give family members opportunity to take what they like. After, get ready to donate, but remember that selling some items could be a viable option, too. When it does come time to donate, be sure to let your senior help decide where.

Set up to settle in – Don’t let your senior move into chaos. Before they arrive to the new home on moving day, set up as much as possible. Make sure the main living spaces are inhabitable and recognizable, especially if there are memory issues. Put things in familiar arrangements and intuitive places. Make rooms attractive and practical. Remind your senior homeowner that they can rearrange things if they want so they feel comfortable but empowered.

Downsizing doesn’t have to be a depressing life event if handled correctly. A little planning, a lot of patience and tons of TLC will help you relocate your loved one to a place they can enjoy calling home.

This post is sponsored by Home Instead Senior Care, serving Prince William and Fauquier counties.



Sentara hernia surgery kept one man from missing his workouts and got him back to the gym, better than before…

Joshua Goad and his wife are always on the go.

“We are very active. I’ve got a sailboat, a kayak. We enjoy going to the gym and working out. It keeps us young,” says the 56-year-old, smiling.

It was during one of his usual workouts when something unusual happened.

“I was at the gym and overexerted myself lifting. At first, I didn’t think anything of it, but then, I started to notice a bulge near my groin region,” he recalls.

Like a lot of people, Joshua Goad thought the problem would fix itself and heal on its own until it didn’t. It was about this time, he started to realize he might have a hernia. 

“I would get to the point where I was lifting, exerting and I could actually feel it tightening up on my intestines, the intestine that was hanging out. At that point, I said, if I strangulate this thing, I could be in a world of trouble,” he says, remembering.

That’s when he made an appointment with board-certified, Sentara Medical Group surgeon, Dr. Steven Nakao. Dr. Nakao quickly diagnosed Joshua with an inguinal hernia.

Dr. Nakao says hernias aren’t that uncommon, “A hernia is when an intra-abdominal organ, or fatty tissue, protrudes through a muscle defect.  This can occur in numerous areas of the body, the abdominal wall, diaphragm and in the groin.  Patients can have a single hernia or numerous hernias at one time.”

While asymptomatic hernias can be observed for some time, Joshua and Dr. Nakao discussed the options and decided surgery would be best. That’s when Dr. Nakao shared with Joshua, he was a candidate for robotic surgery.

“We can tackle all types of hernias using this method. We can approximate the muscles due to the advances in technology and be able to sew easily in the abdomen and then place mesh, if appropriate, through the small incisions,” said Dr. Nakao. “So we get both a return of muscle function and repair of a hernia through small incisions.  This is great for both post-op pain and time off work.”

Joshua had his surgery at Sentara Northern Virginia Medical Center in December 2017. He says he suffered some discomfort those first few days after his procedure, but it wasn’t long until he was back to exercising.

“The weekend after my surgery, my wife and I went to the gym and I was pretty much able to do a limited workout,” says Joshua smiling.

Now, four months later, he says he’s doing better than ever before and doesn’t know why he waited so long.

“I couldn’t have asked for anything better, I was very confident in Dr. Nakao and his abilities. And, he and his team were very helpful. The whole process was smooth,” says Joshua.

And, he has this advice for people living with a hernia: “I should never have let it go for so long. I guarantee it (your hernia) will not get any better. What are you waiting for?”

You shouldn’t live in pain, that’s why Sentara Northern Virginia Medical Center is hosting three, free hernia screenings over the next few months on the mornings of April 14 and May 19. The screenings are free, but you must register.

Local tourism has a new cadence: Steins, Vines, and Moonshine

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Prince William lands nearly 1,000 new jobs in the past year

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Somebody ‘smack yo mamma’ because we’re on the hunt for the area’s best burger

We’re on a quest to find the best burger in the Potomac Local coverage area, which includes Prince William and Stafford counties, as well as the cities of Manassas and Manassas Park. Tell us your favorite burger joint in the comments and I’ll check it out.

To get started on this journey, my wife Jocelyn and I met our friends Rod and Jenn from One Degree Capital at Mason Dixon Cafe in Stafford on a Thursday afternoon. Mason Dixon is one of my favorites because it’s a diner in the heart of Stafford County that doesn’t have a diner feel.

The colors on the wall are a bright cheery orange. The lunch counter and full bar are always packed every time I come in there. Luckily, on this visit (Rod and Jenn’s first at Mason Dixon) we didn’t have to wait for a table.

When it comes to drinks, the beer list is extensive. Jocelyn and I drank blonde ales from 6 Bears and a Goat Brewery in Stafford, while Rod ordered a beer that looked and tasted like a caramel macchiato.

Then it came time for business: Burger time.

The “smack yo momma burger”

Jocelyn ordered what has to be my favorite-named burger on Mason-Dixon’s menu — the “smack yo mamma burger” topped with bacon, cheddar cheese, chipotle mayo, and, wait for it, grilled macaroni and cheese.

It’s got enough mac to smack you momma, I guess.

Jocelyn, who is a big fan of mac and cheese loved it.

I ordered the blackened blue burger with bacon, lettuce, tomato, onion, and bleu cheese dressing. Each savory bite of the burger melted in my mouth. And the barbecue chips on the side went nicely with the burger.

Jenn ordered a less adventurous sandwich — a plain cheeseburger with no toppings. Her favorite part of the meal was the side dish: the sweet potato tots.

Those sweet potato tots

Rod, the most adventurous of all, told our server to have the chef surprise him with the best burger on the menu. Out came the farmhouse burger topped with bacon, cheddar cheese, lettuce, tomato, onion, and one egg sunny side up.

While he wasn’t a fan of the egg (he removed it to a small place and used his lettuce to cover it up as if it was never there) he did enjoy scarfing down the rest of the sandwich.

Mason-Dixon took a chance when it decided to expand from its first location on Princess Anne Street in Fredericksburg and open a second in Stafford, and so far it seems the move has paid off.

Bleu cheese heaven

The restaurant has quickly become a gathering place for good food and good friends and has lived up to its motto: Where the locals really eat.

Mason-Dixon Stafford is located at 11 Hope Road just off Route 1, across from the courthouse. They serve breakfast, lunch, dinner, and brunch on Saturday and Sunday.

They’re open Monday through Thursday from 8 a.m. to 9 p.m., Friday and Saturday from 8 a.m. to 10 p.m., and Sunday from 9 a.m. to 2 p.m.

More arrests made in Dale City bowling alley brawl

Police arrested one person involved in a March 20 brawl at a Dale City bowling alley, and two other suspects turned themselves into police. 

From Prince William police: 

Strong-Armed Robbery *ADDITIONAL ARREST – On March 29, the remaining suspect, identified as  Steven Antonio FOY, who was sought in connection to a robbery at the AMF Bowling located at 4301 Dale Blvd in Woodbridge  on March 20, turned himself into police without incident. Five other suspects were previously arrested in connection to this investigation.

Rosato

Arrested on March 29:

Steven Antonio FOY, 22, of the 1500 block of Camellia Ln in Woodbridge

Charged with robbery and assault by mob

Court Date: Pending | Bond: Unavailable

Strong-Armed Robbery *ARRESTS [Previously Released] – On March 27, Ana Stephanie ROSATO and Jocelyn Verenice VENTURA-LEIVA turned

Ventura-Leiva

themselves in at the Gar-Field Station without incident. Both of the accused were wanted for their involvement in a robbery at AMF Bowling on Dale Blvd in Woodbridge on March 20. Three other suspects were previously arrested on March 21 in regards to this investigation. Attempts to locate the remaining wanted suspect, identified as Steven Antonio FOY, continue to be unsuccessful. The investigation continues.

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