What's Happening in Downtown Ashland - Mar/Apr '14
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Mar-Apr 2014 Issue:

Main Street Happenings

Featured Downtown Spotlight On:

Our Town
Arts & Culture
Randolph-Macon College

Upcoming Events

Did you know?

Message from
Tom Wulf Ashland Main Street Association Executive Director
Save the date - May 3, 2014 for the 5th Annual Chalk Walk.  We provide the chalk - you provide the Art!  Adults, kids - all are welcome to join in the fun!  Stay tuned for more details in the next issue of GET CENTERED!
Visit us on the Web: http://www.mainstreetashland.org 
Questions/Ideas email:  mainstreetashland@gmail.com
 PO Box 33 Ashland, VA 23005  Call:  804.301.6913  
Become a Friend of Main Street! 
Let us help you promote your next Arts & Culture Event.  Send all news items for review to mainstreetashland@gmail.com by the 1st of the month to be considered for the next edition of 'GET CENTERED'.  Please include graphics in jpg format.  We look forward to hearing from you!
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Did you know?
'Tiny Tim's Toys will be coming to 104 S Railroad Ave  (formerly Train Town Toy & Hobby).  They will have trains and more!  Stay tuned for details! 

Ashland Main Street Association will receive their official Virginia Main Street Milestone Achievement Award on March 19, 2014 11:30am - 2:00pm at the Hippodrome Theatre in Richmond. 

Ashland and Hanover County are now featured in Hotel Information guidebooks throughout the region!  Check out the ad - which we hope will bring many visitors to the COTU! 

Pepicelli's Pizza offers a spirit night each month to benefit Henry Clay and Gandy Elementary schools!  Next ones are Mar 25 and Apr 22nd from 4-8pm.  We appreciate businesses who give back to our community! 

Upcoming Events

Mar 6 Thurs  5:30pm 
Gallery Flux (307B England St)
Opening Show Ashland First Thursday

Mar 6 Thurs  5:30pm 
Town Hall 
Zoning Discussion for Business & Property Owners

Mar 7-9 Fri Noon - Sun Noon
Ashland Coffee & Tea
Phloc Madness

Mar 8 Sat 8am
Henry Clay Elementary (310 S. James St.)
7th Annual Tiger Trot

Mar 8 Sat 7-11pm
Hanover Arts & Activities Center (500 S. Center St.)
Mardi Gras at the Center

Mar 8 Sat 7-11pm
Patrick Henry High School Auditorium

Miss Ashland Pageant

Mar 8 Sat 7:30pm
R-MC Blackwell Auditorium (205 Henry St)

Guitarist Mark Edwards

Mar 12 Wed  7pm 
Ashland Library
Mark Twain Live

Mar 12 Wed  7pm 
Town Hall 
Zoning Discussion with Planning Commission

Mar 12 Wed 7:30pm
R-MC Blackwell Auditorium (205 Henry St)

Play:  'The Life and Times of Fannie Lou Hamer'

Mar 14 Fri  6-8pm
Ashland Library
Teen Movie Night for Ages 11-up

Mar 19 Wed 7pm
Brock Center Aerobics Room (400 N. Center St)

Latin Ballet of Virginia

Mar 22 Sat  All Day
Hickory Creek Antiques (427 England St.)
Spring Open House

Mar 25 Tues  4-8pm 
Pepicelli's Pizza 208 S. Washington Hwy 
Spirit Night for Henry Clay and Gandy 

Mar 27 Thurs 6pm
Hanover Arts & Activities Center (500 S. Center St.)
Little House on the Prairie 

Mar 29 Sat  11am-12:30pm 
Ashland Library
Alpaca Children's Program

Apr 3 Thurs  5:30pm 
Gallery Flux (307B England St)
Ashland First Thursday

Apr 5 Sat  10am 
Ashland Library
American Girl Children's Program

Apr 9 Wed  7pm 
Ashland Library
Poetry Reading Night

Apr 11 Fri  6-8pm 
Ashland Library
Teen Movie Night for Ages 11-up

Apr 19 Sat  1pm 
Gallery Flux (307B England St)
Virginia Art Chat

Apr 22 Tues  4-8pm 
Pepicelli's Pizza 208 S. Washington Hwy 
Spirit Night for Henry Clay and Gandy 

Apr 26 Sat 10am-2pm 
Ashland Library
Spring Book Sale

Apr 26 Sat 8am
Hanover Arts & Activities Center (500 S. Center St.)
Race the Rail 

Ongoing Entertainment in Downtown Ashland:

Ashland Museum is open every Sat 10am-2pm & Sun noon-2pm

Ashland Library is open Mon-Thurs 10am-9pm, Fri-Sat 10am-6pm. Story times for kids Mon10-12am & Tues 10-11am. Book Clubs meet every month 10am 3rd Friday, 1pm 3rd Mon, 7pm 3rd Thurs

Farmer's Market is open every Sat from 9am-12pm May-Nov

Live Music:
Ashland Coffee & Tea (Song-Writer Showdown on Tuesday nights), Iron Horse, Farmer's Market,Concerts at R-MC

Wine Tastings: Every Friday Evening at Caboose Wine & Cheese .
Have an event to share? email
mainstreetashland@gmail.com. We encourage you to post events on the Town of Ashland calendar as well.

7th Annual Tiger Trot will benefit Henry Clay and John M. Gandy Elementary Schools' PTA. The 5K course is flat and will wind you through beautiful Historic Ashland and next to the train tracks that travel through the “Center of the Universe”.  Join the fun on Saturday, May 8 at 8am
Congratulations Hanover Idols for 2014!  
Many thanks to Lorie Foley and Sue Watson for producing this amazing community event!   (Photo taken by  Nick Liberante)
COTU Restaurant/Foodie Spotlight: 
Cross Bros. Grocery  
If you want a unique experience - visit our 101 year old Cross Bros. Grocery!  (107 S Railroad Ave).  They have Wonder Roast Chickens & so much more!  Grab some take out items and have a picnic at our lovely Visitor's Center.  Watch the trains go by and enjoy downtown Ashland!  

Let us know your favorite restaurant/foodie experience! Send your recommendations to mainstreetashland@gmail.com.

Hickory Creek Antiques will be hosting their annual
Spring Open House on Sat, March 22 All Day
Visit 427 England Street in the Ashland Town Center.  For more information email: hickorycreekantiques@yahoo.com
Photo:  Ashland Winter Finale by Nick Liberante

Happy Anniversary, GET CENTERED!
Message from Tom Wulf, Ashland Main Street Executive Director 

It’s hard to believe it’s been a whole year since we published our first Get Centered newsletter!  A huge thank-you to Jen Chambers and her promotions committee whose creativity and discipline has kept this newsletter fresh and timely for 12 consecutive months.  In my humble opinion, the development and publication of Get Centered is one of the Ashland Main Street Association’s greatest contributions to the community this past year.
And what a year it has been for Main Street!  This time last March we were still working on our Virginia Main Street Designation application.  In April we helped dedicate the new Municipal Parking Lot with a “You’ve Been Noticed” award.  We held our 4th Annual Chalk Walk in May, and partnered with the Ashland Museum to celebrate the 100th Anniversary of the D.B. Cox Department Store building (now home to the Iron Horse restaurant).  In June we earned our VMS Designation and celebrated with the Market Ashland Partnership (MAP) and our many supporters at Gallery Flux.  We also held our third Streetscaping Roundtable with downtown business and property owners.  In August, we opened our Main Street downtown office.  In November, we organized and hosted the biggest and best Ashland Train Day ever, drawing about 7000 visitors into our downtown!  In December we were awarded a grant through the Virginia Tourism Corporation to improve Ashland-Hanover marketing materials.  The New Year brought in the National Main Street Center assessment team, which was able to hear your suggestions for improving our downtown.  And in February 2014, Main Street partnered with the Hanover Arts and Activities Center, the Ashland Museum, and the Hanover County Black Heritage Society to organize a fascinating forum titled “Untold Stories: Growing Up in Ashland/Hanover – Black and White Experiences.”  A panel of six life-long residents – three black and three white – shared their disparate stories about growing up in the once-segregated Hanover County Public School system.  More than 200 attended the forum, which brought the entire community together in a spirit of understanding.  
Throughout the year, Get Centered promoted the events and activities of many other worthy organizations and businesses, including:  the Center, Ashland Street Parties, MAP, Ashland Museum, Bluemont in Ashland, First Thursdays, Randolph-Macon College, Hanover Tavern, Montpelier Center, and Friends of the Ashland Branch Library (to name a few!)
What’s next for Main Street?  On March 19th, Ashland will receive official recognition of its recent VMS Designation at an awards luncheon at the Hippodrome Theater in Richmond.  We are also teaming up with the Town and MAP to advertise Ashland in King’s Dominion promotional brochures, which will reach 150,000 households – many of which are regular season pass-holders.  We will give our Doswell visitors plenty of reasons to come stay, shop, dine, and enjoy our wonderful town. 
Happy Anniversary, Get Centered!  We will build on the newsletter’s popularity and success to ensure that the “Center of the Universe” becomes a thriving destination-location.  Please forward this edition to your friends and colleagues and encourage them to subscribe.  We love to promote your events.  Send your news to mainstreetashland@gmail.com
Thanks again to all of Main Street’s constituents and supporters.  We are doing great things together!  

Tom Wulf 
Town News
Town Invites All to Town Zoning Discussions!  

“The Town Planning and Community Development Department would like to invite all Downtown business and property owners, residents, and interested citizens to an upcoming open discussion on the proposed amendments for downtown zoning district, B-1. Since the adoption of the Town’s Comprehensive Plan in 2011, the Planning Commission, Town Council and staff have been reviewing and updating different regulatory aspects of the community (e.g. lighting, signage, etc.) to bring them into better conformity with the recommendations of the plan. The review of downtown zoning was the next area, as the Planning Commission is reviewing commercial zoning districts.  

The following meetings have been scheduled to gather input from key stakeholders and interested citizens before the public hearing at Town Council:

March 6th Thurs  5:30pm-7pm in Town Hall. Meeting for business and property owners.

March 12th Wed 7pm in Town Hall. Planning Commission public hearing on downtown zoning update.

A review document that provides detail on each amendment, the factors weighed, and whether this will further or repeal existing regulation, can be accessed at the Planning and Community Development homepage or by stopping into the Planning and Community Development office at Town Hall.
If you cannot make either of these input meetings, or have questions, please contact Garet Prior, Planner II, to discuss at (804) 798-1073 or gprior@town.ashland.va.us. You may also contact Nora Amos, Director of Planning and Community Development at (804) 798-1073 or namos@town.ashland.va.us.

Town shares the 'green' again in March Drawing! 

Congratulation to Lisa Checkosky who won the first drawing for a $100 Town gift certificate in February 2014.  Check out the cool Chevron scarf she bought at b. whimsy with her winnings.  With what is left over - she can shop at any of the following businesses:
Participating Businesses:    
*Iron Horse
*Changing Reins
*The Giving Tree
*Fin and Feather
*Trackside Grill
*Coronado Kingdom
*Homemades by Suzanne
*Tiny Tim's Toys (opening 4/14)
*Chiffarobe Antiques and Gifts
*Bell, Book and Candle
*Caboose Wine and Cheese
*Cross Bros. Grocery
*Ashland Coffee and Tea
*Jezebel’s Boutique
*Waves Hair Studio
*b. whimsy
*Home Energy Store
*Wagner’s Jewelers
*Shear Power

Spend at least $10 at Ashland local businesses between March 15th and March 29th and you could win a $100 town gift certificate!  Take a picture of your receipt and email it to shoplocal@town.ashland.va.us or drop it off at Town Hall to enter the raffle. Be sure to include your name and phone number on the receipt or in your email. The winner of the raffle will be selected in a random drawing on March 31st. A maximum of 5 entries per person will be allowed.
Shop Local, Shop Ashland!
Street Scape Progress!  

Concrete has been poured!  The work on the downtown streetscape project continues despite the cold snowy weather- lets think SUN!  The construction and weather have impacted our local businesses, so please make an extra effort to support them and shop local.  
Spring is NEAR! Have Fun in the COTU!
Opening Show at Gallery Flux: 
"Structures Brought to Light" 
Thursday, March 6th  5:30-8pm  
Miss Ashland Pageant  
March 8th 3-5pm at Patrick Henry High School
The Miss Ashland Pageant - a scholarship program will be held at Patrick Henry High School.  The purpose of this program is to provide education and training scholarships for the winners and a fundraiser for cancer research through the non-profit (501c3) organization – Wine For Cures.   The program provides an opportunity for young ladies to develop poise, confidence, stage presence, enhance conversation and interview skills and public speaking ability. This fun, natural, personality scholarship pageant is open to all Hanover County young ladies – Miss (ages 18-21) – Teens (ages 13-17) – Preteens (ages 9-12) and Little Miss (ages 5-8).  

Click HERE for more information.  Call Sue Cox 804.746.2018 if you have questions. Email: info@missashland.org
Something for Everyone at The CENTER  
Visit  www.hanoverarts.org for more information and to sign up for these fabulous events!  
Ashland Library & Friends of the Library are Energized for Spring! 
Mark Twain Live at the Library  Mar 12 Wed 7pm 
Local talent, Gary Robertson will portray Mark Twain

Teen Movie Night Fri Mar 14 6-8pm  Ages 11 & up.  See a great movie.  Pizza and beverages provided by Friends of the Library.

Alpaca Children's Program Mar 29 Sat 11am-12:30pm
Kids will get to see a live Alpaca and learn from their handlers.
American Girl Children’s Program Apr 5 Sat 10am 

Celebration of Poetry Month-Reading and Sharing Poetry Apr 9 Wed 7pm

Teen Movie Night Fri Apr 11 6-8pm  Ages 11 & up.  See a great movie.  Pizza and beverages provided by Friends of the Library.

Friends of the Ashland Library Spring Book Sale Sat Apr 26 10am-2pm 
Featured Artist & Business Spotlight: Thomas Wakefield & The Ashland Music Academy
Thomas Wakefield
 Founder of the Ashland Music Academy & Gifted 'Center of the Universe' Musician
116 N. Railroad Ave. Suite 1  798-0728
Ashland Main Street Association applauds all businesses that bring visitors to the Center of the Universe!  The Ashland Music Academy provides quality music instruction to students from Hanover, Caroline, and Henrico Counties, as well as metro Richmond.  The Academy is located in the "Weems Building" across from the Visitor's Center in downtown Ashland.   In 2007, Thomas Wakefield, founder of the Ashland Music Academy, recognized the need for this business when music stores in the area were forced to close down.  He rallied talented musicians together to offer instruction and education in guitar, bass, mandolin, ukulele, piano, voice, violin, viola, cello, brass and winds.  The Academy teaches music as if it is a language - a student has the opportunity to grasp it fully - reading, writing, hearing it, and speaking it. The instructors make sure that students are just as capable reading music as playing by ear and try to instill a firm foundation on the fundamentals and theoretical concepts while still making it fun and creative.  The curriculum is personally designed for each student and the instructors work closely with students to figure out their goals and provide a route to them.  The Academy is currently accepting new students – call 798-0728 for more information. 
Click HERE to listen to Thomas play the Ukulele- incredible!
Click HERE to listen to Gypsy Roots playing at the Iron Horse restaurant.
Thomas Wakefield is our featured artist for the Mar/Apr issue of ‘Get Centered’.  He is  a renowned guitarist and lifelong Hanover resident.    He has been in the music business for over 30 years and has taught music for 20 years. Wakefield's passion for music started early.  At age 5, piano lessons were a weekly staple in Thomas’ life.  At age 10 the trumpet was added to his studies as the primary instrument, and it was during this time that he discovered two of his lifelong influences: Louis Armstrong and Dizzy Gillespie. At the age of 14, Thomas purchased his first guitar after years of peeking into his father’s Gretsch guitar case.    Like many teens, he explored rock and roll, but his true interest laid in improv jazz and blues. Largely self-taught, he studied as much jazz theory and technique methods as he could find, but pursued studying the styles of the great guitar artists by ear and transcription. Through college, Thomas composed and performed with the regional rock and roll band, Hit and Run, as well as Kingfish Crawl, a local blues favorite.  His earliest influences were his father, Tom Wakefield and piano teacher, Mary Valdrighi and VCU music professor,  Bob Ellithorpe. He has always viewed music as a way to express, a way to explore, and a creative challenge while being a rewarding meditative experience at the same time.   Two rock guitarists that greatly influenced studying the instrument further are Jeff Beck and Carlos Santana. As an anthropologist, one of his primary focuses is in ethnomusicology and he has extensively studied the BATA drumming of Cuba and its roots with Lukumi of western Nigeria. In recent days, he has redirected his ethno musicological gaze to gypsy swing and jazz manouche. Thomas has found his home!   Thomas continues to compose, teach private lessons, lecture, and perform. He is a Dell’Arte guitar endorser and has performed at the Stonehaven Folk Festival in Scotland.  Visit Gypsy Roots to learn more about his amazing band based in Hanover County, Virginia.  You can hear them play at Ashland Coffee & Tea and the Iron Horse Restaurant in Downtown Ashland. 

Many thanks to Thomas Wakefield and the Ashland Music Academy for inspiring students and creating great entertainment in the Center of the Universe! For more information visit his website:  www.ashlandmusicacademy.com.  He is currently accepting new students.  Call 804.874.9135 for more information.  


Visit our Downtown Galleries
Gallery Flux (307B England Street, Open Tues-Fri 10am-5pm, Sat 11am-4pm)

First Thursday Opening Reception Mar 6th  5:30-8pm  
'Structures Brought to Light'- A Juried Exhibition featuring over 40 artists!  The works have a structure as a prominent subject or are a structure, such as a sculpture. Visit http://www.galleryflux.com for more information.  Show runs until April 26th

Virginia Art Chat with Mr. Foster Billingsley
Apr 19th, 1pm Saturday

Flippo Gallery (1st floor of Pace-Armistead Hall at Randolph-Macon College (211 N. Center St) Open Mon-Fri 10am-4pm

Current Show:  Sally Bowring’s paintings are reflections and active processes of work that involve her domestic life and its rhythms as well as subtle connections to gardens and ancient geometry. Her lyrical work speaks to our hidden need to find structure and cyclical strength in an unpredictable world.

Show runs until April 4, 2014.  Note:  R-MC is closed the last week of March 21-30, 2014 for Spring Break.
more Art... Hanover has wonderful art galleries just outside of Downtown Ashland and has shops that include fine art.  Visit the websites below for more information. Make Hanover & Ashland be your "art adventure" today!

Thrill of the Hunt
Cross Mill Gallery

Art Studio at 301
Montpelier Center for Arts & Education

Visit the Ashland Art Alliance website to find out about artists in our community.

Check out these wonderful FREE events sponsored by Randolph-Macon College that are open to the public in Mar 14': 

Concert: Guitarist Mark Edwards 
Sat. March 8, 2014 at 7:30pm Blackwell Auditorium, R-MC Center for the Performing Arts (205 Henry Street). Internationally renowned, Edwards returns to R-MC to present a host of masterpieces on solo classical guitar. Edwards has won top prizes in over 30 international guitar competitions.

Play: â€œThe Life and Times of Fannie Lou Hamer” 
Wed. March 12, 2014 at 7:30pm in Blackwell Auditorium, R-MC Center for the Performing Arts (205 Henry Street). The Touring Theatre of North Carolina, a professional, nonprofit theatre company, will perform the play.  Hamer was fired, beaten, jailed and shot at just because she wanted to vote. But this daughter of a Mississippi sharecropper went on to address two national Democratic conventions. The production demonstrates the pain and oppression met by black people who challenged the system. It explains the deep emotional scars of African Americans and it offers an excellent opportunity for attendees to discuss openly a means of approaching the truth about race relations. The production features spirituals and freedom songs.

Dance:  Latin Ballet of Virginia
Wed. March 19, 2014 at 7pm Brock Center Aerobics Room (400 N. Center St.)  Free performance!  

Art Exhibit:  Works by Sally Bowring
 Flippo Gallery,Pace-Armistead Hall (211 N. Center Street)  Show runs until Apr 4th  Bowring’s paintings are reflections and active processes of work that involve her domestic life and its rhythms as well as subtle connections to gardens and ancient geometry. Her lyrical work speaks to our hidden need to find structure and cyclical strength in an unpredictable world.  The gallery is open Monday-Friday from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. and by appointment, and will be closed Friday, March 21- Sunday, March 30 for Spring Break.  The show runs until April 4, 2014.

Best of R-MC Study Abroad Photo Exhibition 
McGraw-Page Library  Show runs until Fri May 2 
Students and faculty who have captured their experiences abroad in pictures submit their digital photos in February, and the winning images are displayed in McGraw-Page Library. The exhibition illustrates moments of connection across the globe: being exposed to the history and culture of Japan while exploring its innovative film music or political system, examining the history of the Holocaust and Jewish culture in Germany and Austria, discovering the Christian heritage of Italy, and more. 

Visit Randolph-Macon College  website for the schedule of sporting events & visit their bookstore too!   Many thanks to R-MC for giving so much to our community!  

The Ashland Christian Emergency Services (ACES) is located in Downtown Ashland.  Please help others in need.  ACES recently installed security cameras.  They have found that that donations left they are closed are either stolen or the bags are gone through. When the bags are torn open, the donations are exposed to the weather and they cannot use dirty and/or wet items.  We ask that, until we have installed a storage container, you bring your donations during our business hours. (Monday, Wednesday and Friday: 8:30 a.m.-11:30 a.m.) If you are unable to do so, please call us at 798-2784 or contact us via email: youraces@verizon.net and we will try to make arrangements to get those donations. Arrangements should be made for large items, such as furniture and appliances, as well. Yard good items should be taken to Goodwill since we no longer give them out.  Many thanks.  Here is their Wish List for March 14':

Men's dress shirts, all sizes
Men's heavy coats
Adult's shoes, especially large sizes
Men's new dress socks
Men's new briefs/boxer shorts
Men's new t-shirts, XL and up
Boy's winter clothes, size 6 and up
Boy's belts
Children's pajamas, all sizes
Children's new socks and underwear
Baby wipes

Canned meats, Brunswick stew
Instant potatoes
Canned spaghetti and ravioli
Cake mixes

Toilet paper
Paper Towels
Adult toothbrushes

All donations are greatly appreciated.  Donations may be dropped off at 507B Caroline St. (behind Haskins) on Mon, Wed and Fri from 8:30-11:30am.   
Become a friend of the Ashland Main Street Association!
All About Main Street  & 'GET CENTERED' 

Ashland Main Street Association is a nonprofit 501 (c)(3) organization, founded to help build Ashland into a vibrant, diverse community of residents, businesses, arts and cultural organizations, and to bring visitors into historic downtown Ashland.  It works to preserve, enhance and promote downtown Ashland, to improve the economic vitality and livability of our unique town while preserving its historic character.  On June 7, 2013 Ashland Main Street Association was recognized as a designated Virginia Main Street Community.  

The National Trust for Historic Preservation was founded in 1949 by congressional charter  to support preservation of historic buildings and neighborhoods through a range of programs and activities.  Its mission is to provide leadership, education and advocacy to save America's diverse historic places and revitalize our communities."

The National Main Street Center, Inc. is a nonprofit subsidiary of the National Trust for Historic Preservation.  The Center is committed to advancing the preservation-based revitalization of commercial districts throughout the country.  For the past 33 years, the Main Street Four Point Approach® has been used successfully in approximately 2,000 communities, producing $54 billion in investment, creating 450,000 jobs and resulting in the rehabilitation of more than 229,000 buildings.
The Virginia Main Street Program is a preservation-based economic and community development program that follows the Main Street Four-Point Approachâ„¢ developed by the National Trust Main Street Center. Virginia Main Street offers a range of services and assistance to communities interested in revitalizing their historic commercial districts.  
'GET CENTERED' is Ashland Main Street Association's monthly newsletter that highlights events in the Center of the Universe.  We feature businesses, artists, nonprofits, Randolph-Macon College and town events in each issue.

If you have questions or wish to submit an article for review - please email mainstreetashland@gmail.com.  Articles must be submitted by the 1st of the month to be published in the next issue.  

Copyright © 2014 Ashland Main Street Association, All rights reserved.
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