By Diana McFarland

Managing editor

A street closing request for an autumn vintage market spurred Arts Center Director Sheila Gwaltney to raise concerns about its management.

Gwaltney spoke Monday at the Smithfield Town Council Police Committee meeting about the request, which calls for 7,000 attendees and 60 vendors to be spread out over the 100-300 blocks of Main Street in downtown Smithfield.

The event is scheduled for Saturday, Sept. 30 from 9 a.m. to 2 p.m. Market Manager Cheryl Ketcham is requesting that the street be closed from 6 a.m. to 4:30 p.m. that day.

Armed with photos from last year’s Christmas market, Gwaltney said a vendor set up tents and blocked off the Arts Center @319, which significantly reduced visibility and traffic to the facility. 

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By Ryan Kushner

Staff writer

Schools may be out for summer, but several continue to bustle with activity in Isle of Wight County — one of them with chickens.

The division launched multiple facility renovations this summer, including a repaving of the parking lot at Hardy Elementary School and a building-wide repainting at Carrollton Elementary, which is also having pipes and pipe connections replaced in its sprinkler system after it was cited for a violation this past year due to leaks.

Windsor High School is currently undergoing the most substantial overhaul, as the division moves to carve out a new cosmetology lab and collaboration space as well as build a greenhouse before the new school year begins. The work is part of a new education plan and high school redesign unveiled by the division earlier this year, which calls for an influx of new Career and Technical Education (CTE) courses for students.

The construction at Windsor High is scheduled to be completed by Sept. 1, according to Director of Support Services Marty Callender. Classes are scheduled to begin Sept. 5. 

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By Diana McFarland

Managing editor

SURRY — Law enforcement officers arrested nine individuals for operating under the influence, two for marijuana possession and issued numerous summonses at the annual offshore boating event in Cobham Bay off Chippokes Plantation State Park.

While the boating event occurs the same weekend as the Pork, Peanut and Pine Festival, it is not connected to that event, according the Virginia Department of Game and Inland Fisheries.

There were no incidents at the festival itself, said Surry County Sheriff Carlos Turner, adding that park rangers made three arrests for drunk in public. 

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The Navy takes the Gazebo Stage at 8 p.m. Friday for the Summer Concert Series.

Fleet Forces Band’s Four Star Edition, a high-energy six-piece combo, performs both contemporary and classic rock and roll.

The group’s members are among the Navy’s most talented an versatile musicians.

Four Star Edition is no stranger to the Summer Concert Series. The group has supported it for six out of the past 11 years, though several of those performances were cancelled at the last minute due to thunderstorms.

The concert series is sponsored by The Smithfield Times and the Isle of Wight Arts League. Performances are underwritten by private donations and are free to the public.

Task force work shows in state report spike

By Diana McFarland

Managing editor

The number of reported drug-related offenses have skyrocketed in Isle of Wight County, as well as the towns of Smithfield and Windsor.

At the same time, the overall number of reported criminal incidents have fallen in Isle of Wight and Smithfield, but have gone up in Windsor.

Reported drug offenses have tripled in Isle of Wight, doubled in Smithfield and jumped 900 percent in Windsor from 2011 to 2016, according to the Virginia State Police annual “Crime in Virginia” report. 

Arrests for those crimes have shot up 400 percent in the past five years in Isle of Wight, according to the report. 

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By Ryan Kushner

Staff writer

The owner of a landmark structure that predates the town of Smithfield has filed another application to have it torn down.

Mary Delk Crocker, 86, was born and raised at 502 Grace St., commonly known as Pierceville, which has been under violation of the town’s historical preservation ordinance for nearly a decade.

Crocker’s latest application seeks again to demolish the dilapidated structures “as a matter of right.”

However, her application, received by the town June 26, may be incomplete, according to a staff report from Smithfield Planning and Zoning Administrator William Saunders, who was scheduled to discuss the application at a meeting of the Board of Historic and Architectural Review Tuesday, July 18. 

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By Diana McFarland

Managing editor

WINDSOR — Windsor’s annual Fourth of July town bash included fireworks, food, music and drones.

It was the last item that gave members of the Town Council pause.

“We had four over our house,” said Council member Patty Flemming. 

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By Diana McFarland

Managing editor

WINDSOR — Turning the Windsor Town Center into a rentable facility is just one idea to raise money for its operation, according to the new Advisory Board Chairperson, Brenda Stephenson.

Stephenson gave an enthusiastic report about the Windsor Town Center Advisory Board’s first meeting recently to the Windsor Town Council.

“The ideas just kept coming,” she told the Town Council, and added that the 10-member Board has seemed to gel well together.

Isle of Wight County Parks and Recreation Director David Smith is also eager to get his staff involved in running programs at the facility that was once the gymnasium for the former Windsor Middle School.

“It allows huge opportunities for indoor activities … for everyone from the little infants to the seniors,” he said. 

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The Williamsburg Classic Swing Orchestra will bring the sounds of yesterday to the Gazebo Stage Friday.

The orchestra is one of the area’s longest running Big Bands. They specialize in the dance band music of the 1940s and ’50s, including works by Duke Ellington, Glenn Miller, Tommy Dorsey and Benny Goodman.

They are heard regularly at many summer festivals as well as in concerts at the Kimball Theater and First Night of Williamsburg. Many of the band’s members originally met as performers at Busch Gardens. Smithfield resident Dru Stowe, who plays bass trombone and fronts the band, is one of the charter members of the group who have been together over 30 years. 

Friday’s concert is being underwritten by G.F. Walls Insurance Agency. The Summer Concert Series is sponsored by The Smithfield Times and Isle of Wight Arts League. All concerts are free to the public. 

 

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Edna Felts Myers

 

Edna Felts Myers, 96, passed away on Tuesday, Aug. 4, 2015 in her home. She is preceded in death by her husband, Luther Power Myers. Edna leaves to cherish her memories her son, Robert Hall. A graveside service will be held Friday, Aug. 7, 11 a.m. in St. Luke’s Memorial Park with the Rev. Mike Frank officiating. A special thank you to Marilyn Oliver and Joe Brown for all their love and support. The family request memorial contributions to VFW POST 8545, PO Box 461, Smithfield, VA 23431.

Service arrangements are in the care of Colonial Funeral Home, Carrollton, Smithfield, Isle of Wight and the surrounding communities.  Family and friends are encouraged to share condolences and remembrances at colonialfuneralhomesmithfield.com.

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