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Stories by Melissa Topey

Florence may bring heavy rain, flooding to our region

Residents should hope for the best but prepare for the worst as Hurricane Florence approaches the United States. That is the advice of area law enforcement. Shenandoah County Sheriff's Capt. Wesley Dellinger said Monday that a lot of waterways and streams are already at their limit. "They ...

GOP women hold town hall focused on alternative schooling

WOODSTOCK – Alternative education was the subject of a town hall-style meeting  Wednesday night, the first in a series being planned by the Republican Women of Shenandoah County. Shenandoah County Supervisor Richard Walker and Stephen Curtis, a retired veterinarian, led the discussion heard ...

Agencies not revealing details after bodies recovered

Law enforcement, government agencies, and a commonwealth attorney's office on Friday were mum Friday on details about the recovery of the bodies of a Harrisonburg woman and her granddaughter in Shenandoah County. Officials were not answering  requests to elaborate on where the bodies were ...

A life cycle lesson: Caterpillars, butterflies help students understand growth

Caterpillars and butterflies are helping teach students at Sandy Hook Elementary School. On Tuesday, Jessica Marrow, a third-grade teacher at the school, brought to school about 180 monarch caterpillars she collected on Monday at her grandmother's farm – enough for her class and about 10 ...

Supervisor questions salary of school position

A Shenandoah County supervisor would like to hear from the Shenandoah County Schools superintendent about why he created a position and then filled it at a much higher pay then approved. Supervisor Karl Ralston recently asked if Superintendent Mark Johnston could speak at a upcoming Board of ...

Lewis speaks with area residents at county fair

WOODSTOCK – Sixth Congressional District Democratic candidate Jennifer Lewis brought her campaign to the Shenandoah County Fair on Friday evening. Lewis, of  Waynesboro, said she is finding that as she knocks on doors or is at an event, like the county fair, people are grateful to have ...

Virginia’s first lady visits Central High School

WOODSTOCK – Virginia's first lady Pamela Northam, who taught high school biology, was back in her natural setting on Tuesday afternoon as she read “Baby Bear, Baby Bear, What do You See” to the pre-kindergarten class taught by Melissa Runion at  Central High School. “Who would like ...

LFCC offers classes to help boost employability

Changes to the American workplace are forcing citizens to adapt to a new business world and schools to rethink the skills they need to teach. Earlier this year, the Virginia Board of Workforce Development approved a strategic plan to offer insight into the state's workforce system as it is ...

Middletown property owners plead for help

MIDDLETOWN – Five residents who live in the area of Greenbriar Road and Third Street want the town to do something about draining issues they say threaten their homes and property. The residents attended Monday's Planning Commission meeting and complain about a culvert that drains stormwater ...

Charges filed in two school brawls

The Shenandoah County Sheriff's Office has filed charges against six students involved in two separate brawls at Strasburg High School during the first week of the school year. The first fight occurred shortly after noon Aug. 8 in the school's old gymnasium, two days into the new school ...

Raised dump truck hits bridge, closes interstate, street closed

A dump truck with a raised truck bed struck a bridge and closed Interstate 81 and Spring Street in Woodstock for several hours early Monday morning. The crash occurred 12:59 a.m. Monday as the driver was heading northbound on the interstate, approaching mile marker 284 at Spring Street, said ...

Businesses soon to invite visitors to ‘Find Your Outdoor MUSE’

A partnership between three area businesses has paid off. Muse Vineyards in Woodstock, working with Bryce Resort, Hampton Inn & Suites and Shenandoah County Tourism, has been approved for a $10,000 grant from the Virginia Tourism Corporation Marketing Leverage Program grant fund, ...

Proposed I-81 improvements unveiled

MIDDLETOWN – The public had its first look at possible improvements to Interstate 81 during a meeting Tuesday at Lord Fairfax Community College. “I think this is one of the more robust comprehensive looks of I-81 in decades,” said Nick Donohue, deputy secretary of transportation and ...

Grants awarded to two new teachers

The Shenandoah County Educational Association recently awarded two 2018-2019 New Teacher Mini-Grants, according to a statement from the association. One grant of $250 was issued to Kimberlee Whetzel, a new fifth-grade teacher at W.W. Robinson Elementary School. Whetzel, who wants her students ...

Clearance bars installed to protect bridge

The Meems Bottom Covered Bridge has one more level of protection while it will remain closed to commercial traffic. Ed Carter, the Edinburg Residency administrator, said the Virginia Department of Transportation completed the installation of clearance bars with chains hanging down to alert ...

SOL scores released: Shenandoah results following state trend

Shenandoah County Public Schools seems to be following a statewide trend of declining scores on the Standards of Learning test results that were released on Wednesday. Schools around the state recorded 2017-18 student scores that declined in every subject that was measured --  English, math, ...

I-81 corridor project meeting today

Another meeting for the public to hear more on improvements to the Interstate 81 corridor will be held from 4 to 7 p.m. today at Lord Fairfax Community College. The Office of Intermodal Planning and Investment, the Virginia Department of Transportation and the Department of Rail and Public ...

‘Good energy’ on first day back at LFCC

MIDDLETOWN – Monday was a good day for the 2,782 students who began classes for the 2018-2019 school year at Lord Fairfax Community College. “It went smooth. It was good energy. Despite the weather, it is sunny inside. Enrollment numbers are up. It is going to be a good year,” said ...

Woodstock hires two new police officers

Woodstock has hired two new police officers. Woodstock police Chief Eric Reiley said Chase Kerns and Arianna Smootz are in training at the Central Shenandoah Criminal Justice Academy, commonly known as the police academy. “They are enjoying it. They are learning every day,” Reiley ...