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10 things you need to know about the Bluebell Festival

10 – Learn how to put up nesting boxes and invite bluebirds to your yard. And be sure to ask what they eat. You might be surprised.

 9 – Meet Wilson the friendly Ball Python. Not sure we have to say much more about that, except…ask what he eats?

 8 – Visit Green Level Cemetery, dating back to the early 1800’s, and learn about its history. It’s near an old house ruins in a grove of old oak and cedar trees. It’s only spooky at night.

 7 – Take a guided tour through 100 acres of floodplain wetlands. Wear boots. Life vests not needed.

 6 – Discover wetland critters, from insects to frogs. Get up close and personal with these guys. Be polite. Introduce yourself first.

 5 – Enjoy music provided by the Broad Run String Band. Enjoy great, local bluegrass. Ask them about goat yoga.

 4 – Meet more than a dozen local organizations and the people who make things happen. We’ll give you a hint. They love nature, and they’re good at storytelling.

[Photo: Prince William Conservation Alliance]

 

 3 – Find trout lilies, erythronium americanum and more nestled among the bluebells. Learn to pronounce erythronium.

 2 – View the fabulous Virginia bluebells that carpet the Cedar Run shoreline for nearly a mile. This official flower of Prince William County also happens to be popular in the UK. Who knew?

 1 – Explore the great outdoors with your family and friends. Merrimac Farm is beautiful, especially this time of year. This is a free event.

So now that you know, be sure to show. The Bluebell Festival is Sunday, April 8, 2018, from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. at Merrimac Farm in Nokesville. You might need directions, so here they are.

Oh and take some pics. Email them to PotomacLocal@Gmail.com. Tell us who’s in them and where you’re from. Get famous.



Eggs are not just for Easter

  • Dizzy Pig Barbecue Company
  • Address: 11301 Braden Drive Manassas, Va. 20109
  • Phone: (703) 273-3580
  • Website: https://dizzypigbbq.com/

Dizzy Pig classes draw aspiring master grillers who love their Eggs

There are a few things you need to grill salmon properly.

1. Make sure your fish is fresh and sourced from someone who knows a thing or two about great seafood. Dizzy Pig founder Chris Capell gets his from the hills of southwest Virginia. More on that in a bit.

2. Make sure you use the right kind of charcoal on the grill — wood briquettes work nicely to get the temperature up to the needed 500 degrees.

3. As for the grill, well for that, you’ll need a cooker shaped like an egg.

And those cookers, called “Big Green Eggs,” are what keep people coming back to Dizzy Pig in Prince William County to learn from the master grill chef.

Grilling for 20 years now, award-winning competitive chef and Dizzy Pig founder Chris Capell fired up his Big Green Egg for more than 25 people on a cold and gray Saturday morning in March. They were there for an expert seafood cooking class.

And while not ideal barbeque weather, Capell’s students enthusiastically encircled him on an outdoor patio as he smoked choice cuts of salmon.

Capell keeps the fish to one side of the grate, so as not to burn it, allowing for even heat distribution throughout the grill. The grate is positioned as high as possible, keeping the fish far from the flames.


He applies a butter-maple glaze to the fish and cooks each piece for about ten to twelve minutes on each side until it becomes a dark, rich color worthy of its namesake.

Once finished, Capell pulls the fish from the grill and places perfect portions into trays. He passes them around, so everyone gets a taste.

The smoky flavor gives the fish a more meaty feel, while the glaze adds an unexpected savory undertone. There is nothing fishy about this meat, and the crowd can’t get enough, as many return for seconds.

Preparing the fish


Capell bought his first Big Green Egg in 1998, four years before founding Dizzy Pig. And he’s been sourcing his fish from the hills of southwestern Virginia for many years.

“I had to drive down to Blacksburg this week to get this,” Capell told his class.

This fresh catch is not from any mountain lake, but rather the Outer Banks of North Carolina. Capell knows a couple that lives in Blacksburg. They travel to the shore each week to bring back seafood to sell to Blacksburg locals.

“They really know what they’re looking for when it comes to quality, and I’ve relied on them for years,” he said.

He takes his time to prepare the fish, using a six-inch blade to carefully slice away the skin. Afterward, he goes back and removes any leftover membranes.

“Some people like to cook the fish with the skin on, but it tastes very fishy,” Capell explained.

“There’s also a bloodline that runs underneath the skin. That’s fishy too,” he said, while making precision cuts with the blade.

Building a fanbase

This seafood cooking class is one of many Capell holds at his Dizzy Pig Headquarters near Innovation Park. With its large open space, high ceilings and a video monitor that gives the attendees a birds-eye view of Capell preparing his meat, the classroom serves as an ideal meeting space.

Down the hall is the grill shop, where visitors find shelves full of Dizzy Pig seasonings developed by Capell and his team. The new “Raging River” blend is meant to be used on pork, chicken, and salmon. The truth is it tastes great on everything.

The room is also stocked with an array of The Big Green Egg ceramic kamado-style cookers. Capell swears by them, and, even with prices ranging from $800 to $2,500 a cooker, so do his fans who’ve purchased from him.

“We’ve bought two Eggs, and we cook everything on them, especially in the winter months,” said Jill Caballero of Amissville, Va.

A year-round griller, she uses her Egg three to four times a week to make everything from meats to cake. Yes, cake, the kind you would eat on your birthday.

“It’s really good,” she said.

Many in the class own a Big Green Egg or are contemplating a purchase. These classes serve as how-tos for the Egg faithful.

John and Nelle Krobath of Haymarket purchased their Egg at Dizzy Fest, an annual event Capell holds to showcase great competition cooking on Big Green Eggs.

“We got ours already assembled and broken in,” said John Krobath.

The class was a mixture of singles and couples all looking for a shared cooking experience, and looking to share with each other tips and tricks they’ve learned along the road to master grilling.

Dizzy Pig charges $95 per person or $180 a couple for the four-hour class packed with camaraderie and instruction. It’s part seeing, part cooking and part eating.

Capell is open to questions from the class throughout the experience. Attendees also get a 5 percent discount in the grill store and are served refreshments.

Attendees may register online for an April 21, 2018, pork barbeque class. The class is held from 10 a.m to 2 p.m. at Dizzy Pig Headquarters, located at 11301 Braden Drive.



Façade and landscape improvement grants attract new businesses, encourage expansion

The City of Manassas strategically uses local incentives to attract new businesses and encourage expansion of existing ones. 

Two of these incentives focus specifically on enhancing the aesthetics of highly visible properties within the City’s gateway corridors.  The Façade and Landscape Improvement Grant programs were launched in 2016 to encourage local businesses owners to reinvest in their properties. 

Since that time the programs have been highly successful, resulting in private investment in real property that otherwise may not have occurred. 

The City has funded 13 projects totaling $108,549; leveraging $1.4million in private investment. 

Awarded projects include:

  • Landscape improvements along the berm on Wellington Road between Dumfries and Hampton
  • New paint on the exterior of the building, trim and window replacement and repair of broken sidewalks at Sinistral in Historic Downtown
  • New paint and replacement of rotting cornice of Okra’s and Zandra’s in Historic Downtown   
  • Major renovations (including paint and awnings) as well as significant landscape improvements to Wellington Station

The Façade and Landscape Improvement Grants provide incentives in the form of matching grants to (1) encourage the improvement of landscapes along major thoroughfares and at gateway entrances to the City of Manassas and (2) visually enhance the streetscape and increase interest in the designated area. The initiative also serves as a tool in supporting and retaining small businesses.

For additional information on these and other Manassas incentives, please visit choosemanassas.org.

Our subscribers love us. Now you can try us free for 14 days.

First of all, thank you to all of you who subscribed to Potomac Local and trusting me to continue to provide local news for the community where I grew up.

Your subscription shows that you value our service. From our exclusive reporting on traffic and transit, our coverage of local government, or insight into the local business community, it tells me that you want essential local news that makes an impact — not just stories you can get on any other news website.

Here is just some of what our subscribers are saying: 

You are doing a great job in reporting on local news in Prince William County.  I am glad I paid for the subscription.  I like the Breakfast Links in general, and your daily featured news in particular.
Thanks!

Eric Fagerholm
Montclair, Va.

 

 

You can continue to count on us for this kind of reporting as I am indeed working for you.

When adding a subscription service became an option, I spent the majority of 2017 studying local news websites across the U.S. and Europe with subscription services.

I examined business models and studied what types of news readers would pay for and how they wanted it delivered.

I thought about what reader revenue would mean for us, and what new products and services, like or new personalized weekday Breakfast Links email and new podcast, I could offer our subscribers.

And, I agonized over the prospect of losing readers once we added our subscription service.

However, since our subscription service launched in January, I’ve seen the number of subscribers continue to rise steadily. This must mean we’re doing something right.

But I’ve also heard from some readers who have two common concerns.

1. Our subscribers see the value in our news but they’re shy when it comes to sharing our stories on social media because they’re afraid others won’t like it when they’re asked to subscribe to read.

2. They’d like to try us out before committing to a monthly or annual subscription. 

To the first point, I say sharing our news with your friends who may or may not be subscribers is no different than going to your favorite restaurant, taking a photo of an amazing dish, posting it to social media, and then telling your friends “you gotta try this place.”

The second, free trials are good (hey, even I like a free trial when I’m using new software for home or my business) and that’s why I’ve added a 14-day FREE trial option that will give you full access to our site for — you guessed it — 14 days.

Afterward, you’ll be charged $6 a month for full access to our reporting. Should you wish to save some dough and upgrade to an annual subscription, you can do that, too.

Your support is vital to our mission of bringing you local news and is always appreciated.

The children’s team at Sentara treats premature babies 24/7, keeping families close to home

Just as the weather breaks and it begins to grow warmer, the Women’s Health Center at Sentara Northern Virginia Medical Center’s team of doctors, nurses and staff are trading in their scrubs for tennis shoes.

It’s for the annual March of Dimes March for Babies walk.

It’s such a great way for all of us to celebrate, honor, and remember our babies with others who care so much about mother/baby health issues,” explains Florence Pullo, Interim Director for the Women’s Health Center at Sentara Northern Virginia Medical Center, “Sentara actively participates in this campaign to emphasize how important we believe the health of mom and babies is and to unite the community in building a brighter future for all of us!”

It’s that dedication to teamwork and commitment to the smallest members of our community which is the cornerstone of everything that happens in the Women’s Health Center and is the foundation for Sentara Northern Virginia Medical Center’s partnership with Children’s National Health System.

Children’s National is ranked number one for newborn intensive care in the U.S. News & World Report 2017-18 Best Children’s Hospital Survey.

“This partnership is a good thing for families and the community,” says Dr. Ashraf Afifi, MD, MPH. “The team from Children’s National offers their skills in both the full-term nursery and the intensive care nursey.”

Children’s National’s Neonatologist Dr. Afifi is the Medical Director of Neonatology at Sentara Northern Virginia Medical Center. He was named a “top doc” in the recent “Best Of” edition of Northern Virginia Magazine. Since 2014, he has led the team, which staffs the special care nursery, a Level II Neonatal Intensive Care Unit (NICU), providing expert care for the sick newborns of Woodbridge and the surrounding region.

“Sentara was looking for the skills and expertise of Children’s National on the ground. Right now, we keep the kids who are in need of neonatal intensive services in Sentara. However, if infants need extra help and support, we’ll stabilize them and a transport team flies or ambulances them to Children’s,” explains Dr. Afifi.

The Children’s team at Sentara consists of full-time, board-certified neonatologists and neonatal nurse practitioners for around the clock care.

“We are here 24/7. Not all specialty nurseries have this level of care around the clock. We do,” explains Children’s National NICU Nurse Practitioner, Rosemary O’Neill.

The 14-bed unit typically consists of six intensive care and eight step-down beds. As a Level II NICU, Sentara Northern Virginia Medical Center is licensed to treat babies between 32 to 44 weeks of gestation and at least 1,500 grams or 3.3 pounds.

This partnership allows families to stay close to home as they deal with a premature baby.

“For our part, we want you to stay in the community, we have everything here. You don’t have to go elsewhere. We want to be full service for you. We’re trying to get the word out and inform more families because they’re not aware of those things,” explains O’Neill.

Last year there were 260 admissions to the intensive care nursery, which is reflective of how this collaborative approach has been effective and was needed by the community. Just over 15% of those babies were transferred to Children’s National for a higher level of care.

“This collaboration give families and caregivers more advanced technologies, more advanced diagnosis, more advanced devices,” says O’Neill. “Not only do we have access to Children’s National in D.C., but we also have access to all of Sentara’s resources to our south.”

Dr. Afifi agrees, citing the advancements in research and telemedicine.

“Super pediatric subspecialties, which are few and far between, we can now reach them by telemedicine. We can reach them from the comfort of the practitioner here at Sentara. For example, the peds pathology, endocrinology, cardiology –who will give the information and have the best advice.”

In the end, the partnership is a win for both the hospital and the community it serves.

“At the end of the day, you have a family caring for their child, they have their worries and anxieties for their child, will that child make it or not, how’s that child going to be, what will this child look like down the road in a year or two, having been born at 600 or 700 grams, all of this. Our team practicing here will definitely give them assurances and we can share all the numbers and statistics with them,” explains Dr. Afifi speaking to the team’s level of expertise.

It’s this commitment to the babies they serve and the families they get to know personally every day that motivates the team to participate in the March of Dimes walk. This year is no different as they’ll be part of the Sentara Northern Virginia Medical Center’s March for Babies team on Sunday, April 29 at the Loy E. Harris Pavilion in Manassas.

Join the Sentara team and register for this family and dog-friendly event.

Deadline to apply for One Degree Capital scholarship approaches

The John Mathis Entrepreneurial Spirit Award, named after the father of One Degree Capital co-founder Jenn Mathis, is now accepting applications for the 2018-19 academic year scholarship award.

Established in 2016, the scholarship award seeks to encourage the entrepreneurial spirit of youths. The inaugural scholarship award went to then-high school senior Destini Sapp, owner of two-year old custom craft business Crafted by Des.

Jenn and her business partner, Rod Loges, routinely seek ways to give back to communities including donating goods, services and time as well as mentoring aspiring entrepreneurs of all ages.

“When Rod and I discussed starting a scholarship,” Jenn explains, “we knew we wanted to create something that encouraged today’s entrepreneurial youth. Small business owners employ over half the nation’s workforce. Here at One Degree Capital we do everything we can to encourage growth in this critical segment of our society.”

“We named the scholarship after my dad, John Mathis,” continues Jenn. “Daddy continues to be an enormous inspiration to my growth as a business owner. He constantly inspires, encourages and mentors me on business ownership and leadership. I would not be where I am today without him.”

The application process is now open and continues through March 31. Semi-finalists are notified in April with final selection made on May 15. The scholarship award is open to high school seniors who either work for a small business owner or who currently own their own small business. For more details, visit www.onedegreecapital.com/scholarship.

About The John Mathis Entrepreneurial Spirit Award

High school seniors who are either employed by a small business or who own their own small business are eligible to apply. The non-renewable $2,000 scholarship award can be applied toward tuition and fees of a postsecondary school. For full details and to apply for the scholarship award, visit www.onedegreecapital.com/scholarship.

About One Degree Capital

Headquartered in Tysons, Virginia, One Degree Capital is a privately funded direct lender dedicated to helping business owners get the right capital at the right time for their unique business needs. Established in 2010, One Degree has helped over 5,000 business owners secure millions in capital through dozens of different financing vehicles including term loans, receivables financing, purchase order financing, SBA loans, real estate loans, asset based loans, lines of credit and unsecured working capital loans. For more information or to speak with a Business Capital Advisor, contact One Degree Capital at 1.703.579.6868.

And the Winners Are: FirstLight Home Care, Emerging Business of the Year

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Taking the senior in your life to a doctor’s appointment? Here’s your to-do list.

In a previous article, we talked about ways to make local travel easier for the senior in your life. Sometimes, local travel means going to the doctor’s office. If you care for a senior who needs you to take them to see a doctor, you’ll need to be prepared. The general rules of planning a trip will probably still apply, but visiting the doctor requires some additional considerations. Here’s your to-do list.

Start the conversation – A few weeks before the appointment, when the senior in your care is relaxed and preferably talkative, ask how they have been feeling. Is there anything new bothering them? Do they have any questions? Listen closely and jot down notes in a health journal or notebook. Then list all medication and doses and how long they have been taking it. Document the day and time of the conversation.

Continue the conversation – Two weeks before the appointment, have the same conversation you held in the weeks prior. Ask as many questions as you need to, but be sure to repeat the original questions you asked, too. One week before the appointment, repeat the process. Do the same one day before the appointment and the day of the appointment. Each time you do this, document the day and time of the conversation, as well as medication information. By the time you’re ready to meet the doctor, you will have four entries with useful data that could end up playing a critical role in your senior’s medical treatment.

Keep “things” simple – If you’ve ever had to fumble through a large handbag full of cosmetics, medication, pieces of paper, stale chewing gum and free-roaming pennies, you know how frustrating it can be to find what you need, especially if you’re on the spot. Don’t let this happen to the senior in your care. Pack your senior a purse, wallet or bag with only the necessities, such as ID, insurance card, credit card, pen and the health notebook. Make these items easily identifiable and accessible. Everything else can stay in a different bag.

Let your senior lead – Often the most difficult part of having a caregiver is that it brings on feelings of dependence and vulnerability. Couple this with the natural anxiety many of us feel at the doctor’s office and you can understand why it’s so important to let the senior in your care do as much as they can for themselves. If possible, let your senior enter the office first. Have them sign in for themselves. Since a bag or wallet has been packed in a friendly way, it should be easier for your senior to take out their health insurance card and ID and hand it to the receptionist. Have them choose the seats in the waiting room. All of this will help empower your senior.

Be the interpreter – Medical terminology can sound like a foreign language. Watch your senior’s facial expressions and body language when the doctor is speaking. If your senior appears confused, zoned out, anxious or agitated, ask the doctor to slow down and explain. Repeat back what the doctor says and ask your senior if they understand. Encourage them to ask questions about diagnosis, prognosis and treatment, and discuss the information in the health notebook. Help your senior find words if they are struggling to remember them. Throughout all this, take notes so you can remind your senior (and yourself) of the conversation later.

Decompress – Depending on the reason for and duration of the appointment, your senior could feel exhausted after. They might also be experiencing other emotions, such as sadness, anxiety or anger. Once you leave the appointment, it’s important to let the senior in your care talk. Be sure to recap what happened and touch on the next steps. However, it’s important to then move on to a topic and/or activity that is less stressful. Think of something both of you find relaxing and enjoy doing it together.  

As with anything else in caregiving, don’t try to go it alone. Seek the support you need to better care for the senior who needs you. Your senior and you will both be happier – and healthier – because of it.

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

 

Mary Washington Healthcare first in D.C. Metro to offer breast Microseed treatment

The Mary Washington Healthcare (MWHC) Regional Cancer Center is one of only six sites in the U.S. and the first in the Washington D.C. metro to offer the most advanced radiation therapy for early-stage breast cancer: Breast Microseed Treatment®. Dr. Jean-Philippe Pignol, the innovator of this treatment, recently visited Mary Washington Hospital to share his knowledge and experience with the MWHC Regional Cancer Center team. 
 
Breast Microseed Treatment® is a groundbreaking radiation therapy that works to prevent the recurrence of cancer by treating both the site from which a cancerous tumor was removed and the surrounding tissue. The new treatment is similar to seed radiation therapy used successfully to treat prostate cancer. To deliver this treatment, radiation oncologists place radioactive palladium-filled titanium seeds in the breast around the tumor site. The seeds, approximately the size of a grain rice, deliver low dose radiation over several weeks following the procedure. After treatment, the radiation delivery is complete and the seeds are safe to remain in the breast. 
 
“Breast Microseed Treatment® offers comparable results to traditional beam radiation therapy but this procedure provides so much more in terms of a patient’s experience and quality of life during treatment. This one-time procedure takes the place of what can sometimes be more than 30 radiation treatment sessions. Because the microseed uses less radiation than traditional treatments, patients also experience fewer side effects. This technology allows patients live their lives and get back to the people and things they love,” said Dr. John Chinault, Director of Radiation Oncology at the MWHC Regional Cancer Center. 
 
To be a candidate for Breast Microseed Treatment®, patients must be 50 years of age or older with early-stage breast cancer. Learn more online at cancer.mwhc.com. 
 

Woodbridge suspect wanted for attempted robbery, burglary, strangulation, assault, battery

From the Prince William police press release:

Residential Burglary | Attempted Robbery | Strangulation | Domestic Related – On March 13 at 2:50AM, officers responded to an apartment located in the 3200 block of Ridge View Ct in Woodbridge (22192) to investigate a burglary. The investigation revealed that the victim, a 32-year-old woman of Woodbridge, was involved in a verbal altercation with the accused, an acquaintance, which escalated. During the encounter, the victim asked the accused to leave her apartment. The accused exited the apartment and the victim locked the front door. A short time later, the accused began knocking on the door. When the victim refused to open the door, the accused kicked it open. As the victim was calling police, the accused attempted to take her cell phone. The accused then grabbed the victim by the hair, pulled her to the ground, and choked her. The parties eventually separated and the accused fled the apartment prior to officers arriving. Minor injuries were reported. Following the investigation, a detective with the Property Crimes Unit obtained multiple arrest warrants for the accused, identified as Christopher Maurice GILLETTE. Attempts to locate the accused have been unsuccessful. The investigation continues.

Wanted: [Photo from March 2018]

Christopher Maurice GILLETTE, 34, of the 13400 block of Classic Ct in Woodbridge

Described as a black male, 5’10”, 160lbs, with brown eyes and black hair

Wanted for attempted robbery, burglary, strangulation, and assault & battery

Do Prince William schools offer a ‘world-class education?’

MANASSAS — The Prince William Committee of 100 will turn its attention to schools this month.

The committee will hold a panel discussion called “What is a world-class education and does Prince William County offer one?”

“The county school division’s motto is “a world-class education.”

Panelists will include

  • Riley O’Casey, Prince William County Education Association President
  • Alyson Satterwhite, Gainesville District School Board member
  • Rita Goss, Prince William County Public Schools Associate Superintendent for Learning and Accountability
  • Charles Ronco, a math teacher at Stonewall Jackson High School

I’ll be moderating the event.

Last month, the committee held a panel discussion on transportation and regional development.

I asked Prince William Committee of 100 President Ann Wheeler about why the committee wanted to this month focus on education.

PL: Why did the Committee of 100 (C of 100) choose to talk about schools this month? Is there a sense that county schools are underperforming?

Wheeler: The C of 100 often has forums on schools this time of year because of the budget season. Last year we held a forum on the Revenue Sharing agreement which funds the schools and whether it should be revised. The fact that there are many people in the county involved in school advocacy (both social and fiscal) indicates that it’s a topic that might be of value to present to the community and that the C100 members would like to learn more about.

PL: It’s county budget season, and for years I’ve covered the Board of County Supervisors find new ways to fund the school system. This year, it seems the funding focus has shifted to other county agencies like public safety. Has the C of 100 discussed/have concerns about school funding?

Wheeler: As you mentioned it is the budget season and the schools receive over half of the county revenues, so schools are always a focus. Many of the people posting on social media outlets about the PWC budget are concerned with teacher pay and school overcrowding. I believe this is also reflected at the School Board level.

While the importance of public safety funding is being discussed this year from the county executive, the school funding issue has never gone away. The C100 has no position on whether it’s underfunded, but the question of whether it’s world class or not is possibly a reflection of adequate or inadequate funding.

PL: Obviously those parents who have children in school care about the school division, but what about those whose children have graduated, or who don’t have children in public schools? Why should they care?

Wheeler: Everyone throughout the county should care about school performance. School performance is one of the main drivers behind community attractiveness which drives home prices. We have many over 55 communities that are filled to the brim with grandparents who moved here to be near grandchildren, grandchildren who are in our school system. Finally, corporate businesses look at the success of the school system as a criterion for locating here, because they want an excellent school system for their employees who will live nearby.

The event will be held Thursday, March 15 at City Tavern, located at 9550 Center Street in Manassas.

A social begins at 6:30 p.m. and dinner is served at 7 p.m. The cost of the dinner is $30 for Committee of 100 members, $35 for nonmembers. (Dinner is sold out).

Those who wish to come for the panel discussion may do so at no charge starting at 7:45 p.m.

‘Who we are as a company can be traced back to our Ethos’

Over the course of the past few weeks, we’ve examined in depth how every facet of the FreshySites Ethos can be traced back to our commitment to serving the customer.
 
Through being ego free and asking for more from ourselves, as well as our clients, our team proves its readiness to consistently treat our clients like the top priority they are, with us always going the extra mile if need be. This has both internal and external effects on our company.
 
While pushing FS forward, these foundational elements of our daily processes simultaneously allow our individual team members to grow from within as they push themselves in their abilities and expand their responsibilities/roles within the business.
 
Because who we are as a company can be traced back to our Ethos, which in turn, comes back to our best-in-industry customer service and support, it only makes sense that this is the core of how we market ourselves externally.
 
Using our service as marketing is how we showcase our internal processes in our external outreach efforts. We always want to be known for our willingness to do whatever we can for our clients, in a timely and professional manner, especially delivering answers to their questions – consequently ‘Being Solution Centric.’
 
This sixth part of the FS Ethos is all about focusing on the solution to a situation, rather than dwelling on the problem. Acting defeated and accepting that something is broken, with no solution, is not the mindset with which we train our team.
 
Whether through additional research, team collaboration or an innovative combination of the two, we firmly believe any problem we encounter can be resolved in an efficient and effective way to better serve our clients and our company.
 
Being solutions centric is about being both positive and innovative in our thinking. It requires our being ahead of the curve, which is why our team is constantly educate themselves and researching new tools, approaches, etc. to broaden our individual and collective knowledge of this industry – whether it be WordPress, SEO, Google applications or anything else we utilize daily.
 
A key part of our purpose as a company is a commitment to being there for our clients and delivering solutions to their problems – you can always count on us for that.
 
FreshySites – a regionally focused, solution-centric company with national reach and operations.
 
FreshySites is a fast-growing website design firm dedicated to creating beautiful websites, while consistently delivering best-in-industry customer service and support. Founded in 2011, FreshySites has quickly expanded into the largest in-house WordPress web design shop on the East Coast. Our Washington D.C. office was founded in 2012 by Vincent Consumano. With additional offices, we have the team, resources and tools to serve our local – and national – clients through website mockups, creative briefs, revision rounds, and Search Engine Optimization audits. FreshySites is determined to take our regional clients’ online presence to the next level, ultimately helping them to grow and thrive. Explore our website to learn more about us, see our portfolio of work and become a part of our client family today! ?”

Ah, ’tis a joy to celebrate St. Paddy’s Day locally

If you’re looking for the luck o’ the Irish, there’s no better place than local. Music, food, entertainment and of course, festive libations, abound in our area. Check out the fun and make some plans. (Potomac Local reminds everyone to please drink responsibly).

3/14 Hylton Performing Arts Center’s 8th Anniversary Gala and After Party (Manassas)

Enjoy a reception, dinner and silent art auction. Black tie optional; open to ages 21 and over. The Gala supports the Hylton Center’s many artistic performances, arts education programs and outreach initiatives, as well as the Hylton Center’s Endowment. 

3/16  St. Patrick’s Wine Dinner at Rangoli (Manassas)

Enjoy a four-course dinner with unlimited paired wines and a specially chosen chef’s menu.

3/16 – Wearing of the Green Celebration at Potomac Point Winery (Stafford)

Celebrate St. Patrick’s Day in style this year with Potomac Point Winery. Wear your most festive green attire to come wine and dine Friday, March 16th. A special Irish bistro menu will be served and the wine will be flowing.  Partake in the annual Leprechaun Toss or sit back and enjoy Friday night music. Wine discounts available. 

3/17 – 6 Bears & A Goat Brewing Company’s St. Patrick’s Day Bash & Beer Release (Stafford)

They’re celebrating St. Patrick’s Day the best way they know how….with craft beer, music and food. Join the party for the release of their Irish Red, as well as live music from Marc Allred and Karen Jonas. Enjoy corned beef sandwiches in addition to the usual bbq menu. All ages welcome, must be 21 to drink. 

3/17 –  Adventure Brewing Company’s St Patrick’s Day Parade and Festival (Fredericksburg)

The 16th Annual Jeff Fitzpatrick St. Patrick’s Day Parade starts off at noon and includes fire trucks, classic cars, high school marching band, community organizations, Irish dancers, horses, military equipment and local pageant winners. The parade ends at A. Smith Bowman Distillery, where Adventure Brewing will be hosting a St. Patrick’s Day Festival including local vendors, live music and entertainment, family-friendly activities, food from local food trucks, and of course, plenty of beer. The brewery will be collecting food for the Fredericksburg Regional Food Bank.

3/17 – History of Cooking: St. Patrick’s Day at Ben Lomond Historic Site (Manassas)

For St. Patrick’s Day, join the PWC Historic Preservation team at Ben Lomond Historic Site and the Pat White Center at Ben Lomond as they make traditional Irish cuisine as it would have been made in the days before electricity and pasteurization.

3/17 – St. Patrick’s Day Celebration at Sinistral Brewing Company (Manassas)

St. Patrick’s Day at Sinistral Brewing Company means good beer, good music & good times. There will be sing-alongs. There will be bagpipes. There will be Irish dancers, and yes, there will be lots of green.

3/17 – St.Paddy’s Day Party & Steal the Glass at Ornery Beer Co. (Woodbridge)

The Party’s at Ornery Beer Company for St. Patrick’s Day!! Tapping their newest IRISH STOUT at 12pm Noon and visitors can Steal the Glass: First 300 guests keep their special St. Paddy’s Day Pint Glass!!

3/17  St. Patrick’s Day Party at BadWolf Brewing Co. (Manassas – Kao Circle)

Specialty Cask, Irish Dancers, Phat Yummies Food Truck: Phat Yummies Quesadilla Cantina On Wheels & Kilt Contest at 8:30pm – come dressed in your best outfit!!

3/17 Shamrock & Shenanigans at Brew Republic Beirwerks (Woodbridge)

Join the Brew Republic team on Saturday, March 17th, starting at 9am for kegs and eggs in the tap room! They will be serving Irish breakfast (eggs, hash browns, sausage, bacon, etc.) and we’ll also be serving non-breakfast Irish fair throughout the day.

3/17  St. Paddy’s Day Celebration at Tim’s Rivershore (Dumfries)

Spend the day on the Potomac River enjoying live music, drinks & food specials to celebrate St. Patrick’s Day in style at Tim’s Rivershore.

3/17  Bar Louie’s Annual St. Pat’s Day Bash (Multiple)

Grab your crew and Unleash Your Leprechaun at Bar Louie this St. Patrick’s Day! Get “Lucked Up” at the best party outside of Ireland with drink specials and live entertainment!  Check out your local Bar Louie for details. Locations:

  • Bar Louie Manassas: 9501 Liberia Ave, Manassas, VA 20110
  • Bar Louie Gainesville: 14081 Promenade Commons St, Gainesville, VA 20155
  • Bar Louie Stonebridge: 15001 Potomac Town Pl Suite 100, Woodbridge, VA 22191

3/17 and 3/18  Prince William Humane Society’s St. Pittie’s Day O’Dopt-a-thon (Dumfries)

Come adopt a loving pet looking for a forever home! Pit mix adoptions will be half price at the Adopt Shop (17983 Dumfries Shopping Plaza, Dumfries, VA) and the Prince William County Animal Shelter. This event is sponsored by the Prince William Humane Society.



Revelations and Ancient Discoveries coming to Manassas

Mark Finley, television personality, radio speaker, author, and international traveler, is headed to Manassas where he will present Revelation’s Ancient Discoveries, a series of fully-illustrated prophetic presentations focusing on the Bible’s last book, Revelation. 

Finley has lectured in approximately 100 countries and written more than 70 books. His presentation style brings Bible prophecy to life with fully-illustrated messages he says are “filled with encouragement for people looking for hope in the 21st century.” 

He believes the book of Revelation provides answers to life’s bigger questions, answers “that satisfy our minds and give hope to our hearts.”

Topics include: 

  • Revelation’s amazing end time predictions
  • The Middle East crisis and Bible prophecy
  • Will Jerusalem’s temple be rebuilt
  • Revelation’s world of tomorrow
  • The mark of the beast and the mysterious number 666
  • Hope for today, tomorrow and forever
 
Charles Haugabrooks of It Is Written Television and Voice of Prophecy, along with other notable musicians, will provide music throughout the series. 

Spanish speaking guests will be provided headphones for simultaneous translation. All graphics will be in both English and Spanish on two separate large screens.

Each evening there will also be separate meetings for children ages four to ten. Children’s meetings will include crafts, Bible stories and “nature nuggets” in a separate room.

During the Revelation’s Ancient Discoveries Series, Ernestine Finley will give health presentations that Finley says, “will help you reduce the risk of heart disease, cancer, diabetes and the killers of the 21st century. Her presentations will help you feel better, live longer and experience a greater quality of life.”

The series is affiliated with Hope Channel television, Three Angels Broadcasting, the Voice of Prophecy Radio and It Is Written Television. 

The Revelation’s Ancient Discoveries series begins Friday, March 23 at 7 p.m. and continues through Saturday evening April 28. Meetings are Friday, Saturday, Sunday, Tuesday and Wednesday evenings, with the exception of three Saturday evenings (April 7, 14, 21)

The event will be held at the Best Western Battlefield Inn, 10820 Balls Ford Road, Manassas.
All seats are free, but the best are reserved, Finley says.

 
For a free reserved seat, call 800-467-6443.

Call to Action: Whether you’re into art, wine, jazz or something else, volunteer ops await

Good Morning Prince William – Project Mend A House is gearing up for their Spring Gala and need 25 volunteers to assist before and during the event on Saturday April 25th.
 
The 2018 Art, Wine and All That Jazz Celebrity Awards Gala promises to be fantastic with Dionne Warwick and Jerry Mathers who we of a certain age remember him as that darling “The Beaver” character.  There will be a VIP Reception and Celebrity Meet and Greet before the gala, silent auction and desert reception.  Musicians Marcus Johnson, Caleb Green and Kevin Sasaki as well as artist John Joseph Holohan III will be featured.  Please call Gina at (703) 792-7663 to register for this fun volunteer opportunity.
 
·         Serve our Willing Warriors is having their next volunteer orientation on Wednesday march 28th from 6-7pm at the Retreat in Haymarket.  Come learn about all the super programs and services they provide to the members of the military.  Please email them at: volunteer@willingwarriors.org if you plan to attend. They also are having their next Ambassador training on Wednesday April 18th at 6-7pm. This is the perfect way to enjoy community events and spread the word about all the good things happening at the Retreat.
·         Care Net is having their Run 4 Hope. Walk for Life 5K fun run and 1  Mile walk on Saturday April 14th beginning at 8:30 am at the Harris Pavilion in Manassas. It’s a fun way to start your weekend.  On line registration is just $15 and at the door is $20. Free T-shirt and wristband with registration. Kids 12 and under are free.  Please register at: voice4life.org or email them at:drc@carenetprcs.org for more info.
·         Keep Prince William Beautiful has a fun new program for fitness enthusiasts to take action to be environmental stewards.  This volunteer team is called Prince William Ploggers. Please call Lynda at (571) 285-3772 to get your Plogger team going.
·         Hey Teens – there are still a few volunteer spots available to help at the ICan Bike event during Spring break at Colgan High School. It’s a great way to help new bike riders and have tons of fun during spring break- March 26-30.  Please register to volunteer at: icanbikepwcvolunteer.eventbrite.com. You can call Jennifer or Yukiko at (571) 989-3618 to learn more.
·         The Autism Society of Northern VA is gearing up for the annual walk in the fall and need volunteers to join their planning committee.  Tasks include coordination, outreach, recruitment, promotion, fundraising and logistics management. Please email them at: volunteer@asnv.org to learn more.
·         Manassas Parks, Culture and Recreation is looking for volunteers to serve as instructors or assistants for a basic tech class for seniors. The curriculum includes navigating the internet, online banking, reading emails and attachments as well as basics of Microsoft Word.  Please call Jean at (703) 257-8451 to learn more.
·         CASA Children’s Intervention Services is looking for volunteer advocates to work with children in crisis.  They have an extensive training program to give you all the needed skills.  Please come to their next volunteer information session on March 21st from 6-7pm at 9415 West Street Manassas. Please email Suzanne at: smitchell@casacis.org to learn more.
·         The Haymarket Regional Food Pantry invites you to their 40 days of Giving Campaign- 2018 Lenten Challenge.  Gather your friends and family to pledge either a can a day or a dollar a day to support the many families in need.  This campaign started February 14th and goes through April 1st- Easter Sunday.  Suggested items are all the usual’s you know!  A full list and additional info can be found on their website at: haymarketfoodpantry.org
·         The Lutheran Church of the Covenant in Dale City wants to pack 30,000 meals for Rise Against Hunger on March 10th.  Super fun, family friendly event to help those less fortunate.  You can choose either morning or afternoon shift.  Please visit: www.whatsupwoodbridge.com for the link to register. They also need donations to buy the meal components.  Please call Patti at (703) 200-3077 to learn more.
·          Occoquan Watershed Clean-up is hosted by Rebekah a 13 yr. old Girl Scout on March 10th 10am-12;30 at Lake Ridge Park.  Come support her litter prevention project!  Please email Rebekah to volunteer or for more info at: sue.davejohnson@gmail.com
·         Save the date! April 21st for the 9th Annual Upper Occoquan River Clean-up – 9am-2pm. This extensive project has a whole number of places to start the day. Trash bags, water, gloves and refreshments provided.  Please visit their website at: pwtsc.org to register and get all the specifics for the day. Please email Ed at efdandar@verizon.net to learn more.
·         The ARC Greater Prince William invites you and your family to their 5K Run/Walk/Roll on Saturday April 28th, 8am at Potomac Nationals Stadium. $25 for the first 100 participants, $30 early-bird registration before April 1stand then $40 regular price.  Please visit arcgpw.org for more info and to register today!
·         Mark your calendars for April 18th at Chick-Fil-A in Lake Ridge to find more volunteer opportunities from area agencies.  The event is 9am-10:30am.  Bring your friends for free coffee.
·         The Bull Run Rotary Club invites you to their annual Manassas Runway 10K, 5K or 1 mile run on the Manassas Airport Runway on Sunday April 29that 8am. Please register online at: bishopseventregistrations.com
 
If you are looking for other opportunities, please don’t forget to call my wonderful team at Volunteer Prince William. Jan can help you with the Retired and Senior Volunteer (RSVP) opportunities at (703) 369-5292 ext. 1, Shelley can help with any individual or group projects and send you weekly updates if you’d like. Shelley is at (703) 369-5292 ext. 0, and Bonnie can help you with opportunities available in Disaster Preparedness at (703) 369-5292 ext. 3. Please visit our newly re-vamped website at www.volunteerprincewilliam.org. Thanks so much for all you do in our community.

Two suspects, two hotels, two robberies equal arrests

From the Prince William police press release:

Armed Robberies *ARRESTS – On March 5, detectives from the Robbery Unit identified two suspects involved in two separate robberies that occurred at the Rimpal Inn and Suites located on Old Centreville Rd on December 5, 2017, and the Holiday Inn located on Balls Ford Rd on December 7, 2017. Following the investigation, detectives obtained multiple arrest warrants of both suspects, identified as Brendon M. PAINE and Robert Jamal JACKSON. On March 8, PAINE was arrested without incident following the execution of a search warrant at his residence in Fairfax. Further investigation determined that the firearm used in the robberies was recovered when JACKSON was arrested on December 13 following a traffic stop for a traffic violation. JACKSON remains incarcerated at the Adult Detention Center and was served with the additional charges.

Arrested on March 8:

    Brendon M. PAINE, 19, of 6515 Terry Dr in Springfield

    Charged with 2 count of robbery and 2 count of use of a firearm in commission of a felony

       Robert Jamal JACKSON, 24, of 8529 Piney Point Ct in Manassas

    Charged with 2 count of robbery, 2 count of use of a firearm in commission of a felony, and 2 counts of possession of a firearm by a convicted felon

    Court Date: April 10, 2018 | Bond: Both were held WITHOUT bond

    Armed Robbery [Previously Released] – On December 7 at 12:22AM, officers responded to the Holiday Inn located at 10424 Balls Ford Rd in Manassas (20109) to investigate a robbery. An employee reported to police that an unknown man entered the business and approached the front desk. During the encounter, the suspect brandished a handgun and then demanded money. The suspect took an undisclosed amount of money before fleeing the area on foot. No injuries were reported. A police K-9 searched for the suspect who was not located. The investigation continues.

    Armed Robbery [Previously Released] – On December 5 at 11:44PM, officers responded to the Rimpal Inn located at 7399 Old Centreville Rd in Manassas (20111) to investigate a robbery. An employee reported to police that an unknown male wearing a mask jumped over the front counter and brandishing a handgun at the employee. During the encounter, the suspect forced the employee to open the register to obtain money. The suspect then fled the business on foot with an undisclosed amount of money. No injuries were reported. A police K-9 responded to search for the suspect who was not located. The investigation continues.

Make local travel easier for the senior in your life

We know what it’s like to live in this area. Between the busyness of everyday living, the demands continuously made of us and the traffic, it’s enough to try the sanity of even the most level-headed among us. So imagine what it’s like for the senior in your life who has to travel locally with you. Not only can they feel your stress, they have their own issues to manage.

We’ve worked with families enough to know that no one wants tempers to flare or plans to be disrupted, especially over something that could have been avoided by implementing some simple strategies. Because we understand how easy it is to get derailed by even the little things, we’ve put together these tips and reminders to help make traveling locally with your senior as smooth and painless as possible. Let’s get started.

One week or more before the trip – Yes, prep starts this early. It begins by being judicious about setting appointments or scheduling errands. Based on the needs of the senior in your care, book appointments and activities in segments that are reasonable. Don’t try to cram multiple appointments in on the same day if you don’t have to. And avoid running from one side of town to another if you can group your errands geographically. If you don’t plan this part wisely, the whole local travel experience can quickly become a tiresome exercise in frustration that rarely ends well.

48 to 12 hours before the trip – This is probably going to be mostly a period of observation. Pay attention to how the senior in your care is feeling emotionally and physically. If they have been having specific challenges close to the scheduled local travel, you’ll want to judge whether or not the plans you’ve made still make sense. Address any issues as soon as possible. Even if all is well, during this period you’ll want to remind your senior about the plans you’ve made together. It’s good to jog the memory as often as needed, and doing so can give the senior in your care something to look forward to.

Four to three hours before the trip – Depending on the needs of the senior in your care, you will need to allow plenty of time for getting ready. Choosing clothing, then bathing, dressing, eating, and discussing plans again, can be time consuming. Decrease stress by allowing enough time to get everything done at a comfortable pace.

Two hours before the trip – This is a good time for the senior in your care to relax a little while you do things like ready yourself and gather necessary items for the excursion. Veteran caregivers keep a physical or mental list of must-have items for the drive. These can include medical equipment, medication, snacks, books, checkbooks, credit cards, phones, extra clothing and sanitary items. Make sure you have enough of everything. You don’t want to run out of necessities like oxygen or blood sugar testing strips before you return home.

One hour before the trip – Remind the senior in your care that you are getting ready to leave. Take care of any last minute toileting or hygiene. Don’t expect to be able to rush out the door and jump into the car. Give yourself plenty of time to address any mobility issues. This is also a good time to reassess your senior’s mood. Some seniors become anxious as it gets closer to leaving the home where they know they have everything they need. Remind them you’ve planned and packed, and review with them what you have on hand. If your senior reminds you of something you’ve overlooked, be grateful they told you before you walked out the door!

In the car – Help the senior in your care into the vehicle. Make them comfortable and assist with the seatbelt, double checking to ensure it is fastened correctly. Play soothing music or enjoy a light conversation. Drive safely. And don’t be surprised if you need to stop prior to reaching your destination. If you’ve planned ahead, you know this is a possibility, and you’ll have plenty of time to take care of those emergency bathroom breaks.

Upon arrival – Arrange everything so that when you help the senior in your care out of the vehicle, you don’t have to leave them standing unassisted while you rush around and gather the items you’ve packed. If this means they have to sit in the car for a few moments while you prepare, that’s fine. Better to have everything organized so you’ll have free hands to help out your fellow traveler.

When you look at this list, you might say, wow. That’s an awful lot of preparation just to run a few errands or make it to an appointment. If that’s what you’re thinking, you’re right. Traveling with seniors requires more work and strategy than many younger people are accustomed to. The good news is, the more you do it, the easier it gets, and the more enjoyable your time spent together becomes. It’s these little local adventures that can mean a lot to the senior in your life. And that makes the effort well worth it.  

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

The best way to keep Prince William students safe: More guns?

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