Lynchburg’s Holiday / Christmas Parade Winners Announced

Some Obvious Winners in Parade Contest 2014…some not so Obvious

I think it is well noted that the December 7th Lynchburg Christmas & Holiday Parade was a big hit for 2014, but for the Parade Judges there were some obvious winners and some not so obvious winners.

Many might not know but one of the reasons Monument Terrace is lite up for the parade is not just for the MC’s but for the parade [entry] judges. “This year was very difficult because it was such an amazing, well-thought out group of entries, but someone has to be a winner,” said one judge. The winners are based on the following categories: Overall Interpretation of the Theme (A Season of Lights and Laughter), Overall Artistic Style, and Overall Performance.

Marching Band winners – (1st Place) EC GLASS High School (2nd Place) Heritage High School

Walkers: (both first time entry’s for this parade) – (1st Place) Monacan Indian Nation, Amherst VA: Wonderful tribal dancers in full authentic costumes, wonderful performance, stopped every few blocks to entertain spectators, and (2nd Place) New Horizons Equine, Phenix VA: Large group of well trained horses, lit and decorated for the event, dogs and walkers too, amazing first time entry for this parade.

Vehicles (no floats attached): (1st Place) Virginia Select Auto, Amherst VA Creatively filled interior of vehicles with lights, blow-ups and stunning decorations, and (2nd Place) Lynch’s Landing Trolley, a regular at the parade, but was beautifully decorated, carrying Beautiful Miss Lynchburg, Stephanie Szkalak.

Floats: 3 winners – (1st Place) Caterpillar Club House & Stormtroopers with Purpose – Star Wars Christmas Float with Real Star Wars Characters in Christmas Boxes. (2nd Place) Lynchburg Elite Dance, Gorgeous Oversized Dance Float on a semi-truck with lights, dancers, elves. (3rd Place) Jelly Stone National Park, Yogi Bear, Ranger & Friends: Pleasantly lit natural float, wonderful characters of the park – entertained the judge with the national dance craze “the Wobble”! “Truly adding ‘laughter’ part to the event hands down” said one judge.


Notable Mentions:

Retail Merchants Float “Be a Star in your Community, BUY LOCAL”, Elvis Tribute Artist, Taylor Rodriguez from Bedford. Funny note: Many in the crowd thought he was lip sinking, though he was NOT. Taylor has performed for many organizations, rescue squads, adult care centers, homes for the disabled, various charity events and in 2013, at the age of 15, he performed at Graceland.

Garry Viar and Salon V of Acorn Hill Spa / “Miss Virginia Float”. Lovely Float with lights and filled with beautiful people including Miss Virginia, Courtney Garrett. Since Garry Viar and Salon V cater to the small, more intimate weddings and are a one-stop wedding planning business, they tried to capture this beauty in their float.

There were so many entertaining and heartfelt floats this year. We hope to have a gallery of more pictures on the parade website later this week. Many are coming in on the Parade Facebook Page, so keep checking back. The event was successfully streamed LIVE during the parade; however, a recording was not secured. If the community has video and would like to share it, RMA would appreciate any submission. We would be most grateful and it would be wonderful Christmas gift for us.

Email RMA Parade Chairman, Laurie Gullusico at or call the RMA office at (434) 528-1732.

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ROSE Project in Appomattox Keeps Getting Delayed

Town of AppomattoxThe roadside garden project in Appomattox, has been delayed several months. Nicknamed the ROSE program. The project started about a year ago as one of Appomattox Town council’s priorities initiatives to improve economic development and visitation. The gardens were scheduled to be planted in November but was held off for various reasons not entirely bad news, because the delay has allowed for more potential sponsors to get involved. The program’s board of directors will select the planter at a meeting next week. The planting will take place in March plenty of time for the plants to bloom for the upcoming sesquicentennial events.

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Police Warning of Break-Ins

LPD lynchburg policeLynchburg Police are warning citizens of car break-ins and urge residents to take precautions. According to the LPD, there have been 138 car break-ins reported so far in 2014- 38 percent have occurred in just last 3 months. But with the holiday season now upon us temptation increases. Experts urge shoppers to keep valuables or gifts out of sight packages should be put in the trunk. Never leave GPS units in your vehicle; don’t leave a car running and always lock your doors. Authorities say thieves are on the lookout for opportunity the items sought and most easily stolen include purses, keys and electronics. Since September, there have been 52 breakins and counting tis the season.

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Accused Man Now Facing Rape Charges

police lineThe Lynchburg man accused of holding a fundraiser in honor of his dead daughter but never giving the money to the charity now faces charges regarding the rape of a juvenile. Jonathan Craft now faces multiple charged in Campbell County including, abduction by force and rape of a juvenile. Media outlets report, Craft was arrested on November 7. On Monday, he appeared for a preliminary hearing on the new charges; and the case will continue to the Grand Jury in January. Craft was previously charged with obtaining money by false pretense, after CASA of Central Virginia says Craft held a fundraising event with their name attached to it in April but never received the money.

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Interview with Gary W. Reynolds, Ph.D

WLNI-SDiscussion on the editorial cartoon by nationally syndicated artist Pat Bagley published in the News and Advance Friday.

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Lynchburg Man Shot, In Critical Condition

police lineA Lynchburg man remains in critical condition today after being shot in the chest last night, the second shooting along Fort Avenue, in just over a month. Authorities say 32 year old, Haywood Keith Payne Jr., suffered multiple gunshot wounds to the chest just after 10pm Tuesday night; 63 year old, Larry Donnell Mosley faces multiple charges from that incident which occurred at an apartment. 34 year old Tony Brown, was hospitalized on October 25, after he was shot in the abdomen at the Japanese Steak and Seafood House also on Fort Ave. The two shootings at this time are not believed to be related.

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Lynchburg Tea Party Hosting Local Convention of States Tomorrow

WLNI-SThe Lynchburg Tea Party is hosting a local Convention of States event tomorrow evening. Organizers say it’s an opportunity to learn how the project is working with Legislators to use Article V and why proponents believe arguments made against their approach are misplaced. State Delegates and Senators across central Virginia have been invited; LTP President George Caylor told WLNI’s Morning show that the Convention of States Project is gaining momentum. Here is is the full interview:

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Click here for full event information.

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Demand for Emergency Services Growing

Campbell CountyThe demand for emergency services is growing in Campbell County; the Wards Road and Candlers Mountain area has seen the most growth in the past decade. Calls for emergency help in just that five-mile radius continues to increase on average between 1,000 to 1,200 per-year! County Administrator, Frank Rogers says they’re trying to plan ahead to protect lives. To address the growing need, officials are considering building a rescue squad near LU’s Medical School property the University donated. County leaders have 10 years to make a decision before forfeiting the property.

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Nelson County High School Prompted to Make Changes

NelsonCountyA site visit by Feds early this year, has prompted Nelson County High School to implement changes in order to meet accessibility standards. The Department of Education’s Office of Civil Rights, inspected the school in January, the first by the federal agency in 22 years. In May a report was released with 17 findings regarding equal access for students with disabilities. The school had 90 days to respond with a plan of action. Work began in July, and the school has already spent about $30,000 from its general maintenance budget toward modifications. The school board, anticipating a capital appropriation to address the remaining compliance issues, met with the board of supervisors on Nov. 13. A decision is forthcoming.

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Dominion Resources Provides Property Tax Estimates

dominionDominion Resources Inc. on Monday provided property tax estimates to local governments regarding the proposed Atlantic Coast Pipeline. According to the Richmond based company, the proposed pipeline which would deliver natural gas to the Southeast would provide up to $25 million in annual local property taxes for municipalities along the proposed route– Nelson County would receive among the largest amounts $41,500 in 2016 and $1.57 million by 2015. But the project continues to come up against pockets of opposition– Among the concerns expressed include fear that the line would traverse an environmentally sensitive landscape. If approved by federal regulators, the pipeline is projected to be in service by late 2018.

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