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Second annual Plow Day brings parade of antique tractors to turn soil in rural Virginia Beach

BY JANE BLOODWORTH ROWE CREEDS — Farmers and tractor enthusiasts traveled to Bonney Bright’s Farm on Buzzard Neck Road on Halloween Day, and many of them brought their antique workhorses in all models, sizes and colors — and then they put… Continue Reading

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No, the post office in Back Bay is not closed or planning to close

BY JOHN-HENRY DOUCETTE BACK BAY — Despite online rumors, the post office in rural Back Bay remains open, and there are no plans to close it. The property the U.S. Postal Service leases for Back Bay Station is for sale, according… Continue Reading

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Project studying submerged aquatic vegetation in Back Bay shows promise, needs funding

BY JOHN-HENRY DOUCETTE VIRGINIA BEACH — A couple of years ago, Dr. Sara Sweeten, a research scientist at Virginia Tech, stumbled across specimens of an aquatic plant called wild celery that had been started from seeds left behind by undergraduate… Continue Reading

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From the Editor: Finding The Indy’s voter guide in print, next year’s publication dates

  BY JOHN-HENRY DOUCETTE BACK BAY — I have extra copies of our voter guide, which includes Q&As with candidates for City Council and School Board in Virginia Beach. I usually print extra of this voter guide, one of the most popular… Continue Reading

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After controversy, Virginia Beach will refocus on assembly uses for land zoned for farming

BY JOHN-HENRY DOUCETTE COURTHOUSE — Following the recent approval for a nonfarming commercial venue that will operate on farmland in the rural city, city officials are renewing efforts to create clear guidelines for assembly uses such as weddings on land… Continue Reading

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Ignoring farmers, City Council approves event venue on land zoned for agriculture in rural city

BY JOHN-HENRY DOUCETTE OCEANFRONT — Moments after a stunning reversal by the Planning Commission, the City Council on Tuesday, Aug. 25, voted to approve a conditional use permit so an event business can operate on land zoned for agriculture in… Continue Reading

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Column: City decisions about land use have real consequences for farms and rural communities

BY KAREN BEARDSLEE KWASNY VIRGINIA BEACH — Weather wreaks havoc on farmland?   So, too, do city decisions.   It’s a bit overwhelming — the myriad articles about the way our ever-changing climate affects our farmland.   A quick look at… Continue Reading

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Column: We should have fought the Wolfe Bros permit harder, but keep fighting

BY JARED BRANDWEIN BACK BAY — An editorial in the pages on The Independent News warned us all that we needed to show up at the Tuesday, Aug. 25, City Council meeting to be heard on a proposal to use land… Continue Reading

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Editorial: Virginia Beach City Council betrayed farmers and its own land use ideals — for tourism

Ed. — From the Sunday, Sept. 6, print edition. THE INDEPENDENT NEWS BACK BAY — False steps large and small by Virginia Beach’s government and people who advise it led to the City Council decision this past month to permit Wolfe… Continue Reading

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Column: We must preserve farmland and rural communities

  BY KAREN BEARDSLEE KWASNY VIRGINIA BEACH — In 2002, when my husband and I were looking for a new house, a friend said to me, “You need to live in Pungo, Karen. That place will feel like home to you.” … Continue Reading