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In Virginia Beach, Chicho’s seeks volunteers to deliver Christmas trees to Outer Banks beaches

BY JOHN-HENRY DOUCETTE OCEANFRONT — On New Year’s Eve, some Christmas decorations came down at Chicho’s Pizza at the Oceanfront to make ready for 2020, and giant bags of colorful balloons were on hand. Just outside, a chunk of the lot near… Continue Reading

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Virginia Beach: A step forward in redevelopment of Dome site

BY JULIE TAYLOR COURTHOUSE –  Atlantic Park, the $325 million mixed-use development project planned for the former Dome site, is one step closer to becoming reality.     The Virginia Beach City Council unanimously approved the development agreement for the… Continue Reading

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In Virginia Beach, questions remain about political activities by nonprofit ‘teachers’ group

Ed. — This story appeared in the Friday, Nov. 29, print edition. BY JOHN-HENRY DOUCETTE VIRGINIA BEACH –  Weeks after Election Day, questions remain about the political activities and policy goals of a nonprofit organization that quietly was formed by a… Continue Reading

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Late-year crops at local produce markets — brussel sprouts, greens, squash, even bok choy

Ed. — This originally ran in the Nov. 1 print edition. BY JANE BLOODWORTH ROWE PUNGO — Now that the weather’s finally changing, locals are looking forward to the fall vegetables beginning to appear at local farm stands, and, despite hot, dry… Continue Reading

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Group claiming to represent educators makes surprise endorsements, raising questions about its political advocacy; commonwealth’s attorney reviewing complaint

Ed. — This story originally appeared in the Friday, Nov. 15, print edition. The VBTA has not responded to requests for information detailed below. BY JOHN-HENRY DOUCETTE VIRGINIA BEACH –  Early on Election Day, state Del. Barry Knight, R-81st District, drove… Continue Reading

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Agriculture: ‘Plow Day’ today at Bonney Bright’s farm in Creeds

BY JANE BLOODWORTH ROWE CREEDS — A nostalgia for the sight of freshly turned soil, an interest in retro machinery and a willingness to wear red bib overalls can drive antique tractor enthusiasts – and local tractor buffs will come together for… Continue Reading

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Us: Mark Michielsen of VFW Back Bay Post 1211

Ed. — The Independent News asked people to write about lessons from their military service, past or present, and most responses ran this summer and are now online at our website. To read the previous works from this series, please search… Continue Reading

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From the Editor: As school days near, savoring the last day of a summer together

Ed. — This column originally ran in the Friday, Sept. 20, print edition. BY JOHN-HENRY DOUCETTE PUNGO — On Labor Day, the end of our summer, we are together in the madhouse, making coffee, figuring out chores, awaiting the start of the… Continue Reading

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A new principal joins the community at rural school in Creeds

BY JANE BLOODWORTH ROWE CREEDS — Getting to know the community and the students is the key to being an effective elementary school principal, according to Douglas Knapp, the new principal at Creeds Elementary School. Knapp, who replaced Casey Conger as… Continue Reading

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Virginia Beach City Council will take more time to review appointments

Ed. — This story originally ran in the Friday, Oct. 4, print edition. THE INDEPENDENT NEWS COURTHOUSE –  The City Council on Tuesday, Oct. 1, unanimously adopted a change that will ensure members have more time to review nominees to the… Continue Reading