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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

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Editorial: Rural residents should speak because a commercial venue is proposed for agricultural land

THE INDEPENDENT NEWS BACK BAY — A pending conditional use permit request deserves attention before the Virginia Beach City Council makes a decision that could have consequences for rural communities. The City Council on Tuesday, Aug. 25, is scheduled to consider a… Continue Reading

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Planning Commission recommends denial of proposed event venue on farmland in rural Virginia Beach

Ed. — This story originally appeared in the Sunday, July 5, print edition. It has been updated to include the date upon which the City Council is scheduled to consider the proposal. Additionally, it now appears unlikely the City Council will… Continue Reading

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Blackberry season is underway in southern Virginia Beach

BY JANE BLOODWORTH ROWE PUNGO — Summer’s heat and sun are ripening the blackberries, and this fruit is becoming available locally at markets. Blackberries aren’t as widely grown commercially as strawberries in Virginia Beach, but farmer Roy Flanagan grows them to… Continue Reading

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After initially announcing closure, Pungo Blueberries Etc. is open this summer for you-pick business

BY JANE BLOODWORTH ROWE PUNGO — It was barely 7 a.m. on one recent humid, overcast morning, but already customers were in the orchard plucking the plump berries that were ripening at Pungo Blueberries Etc.   Farm owners Robert and Juanita… Continue Reading

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So long, strawberries: A big year for iconic Virginia Beach crop

BY JANE BLOODWORTH ROWE PUNGO — This spring may go down in local lore as one of the best strawberry seasons ever in southern Virginia Beach. There was a bountiful crop thanks to the weather conditions – and there were… Continue Reading

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New addition to pork retail market shows growing interest in local food sources during pandemic

BY JANE BLOODWORTH ROWE BLACKWATER — Land of Promise Farms, traditionally the go-to spot for youth raising pigs as 4-H projects, is now selling pork directly to local consumers at the Market at Land of Promise Farms. Sausages, bacon, pork chops, ribs… Continue Reading

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Column: Help is available for our businesses, citizens, and city priorities remain in place while we deal with the coronavirus crisis

BY BARBARA HENLEY PUNGO — Even though we are still not able to have regular meetings, and the monthly Princess Anne District Forum was again canceled this past month, there is work being done and issues to be discussed.   The budget… Continue Reading

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Henley: Budget efforts continue during coronavirus uncertainty

BY BARBARA HENLEY PUNGO — It is hard to believe that another month has gone by, and we still are not able to safely hold meetings and other gatherings. Certainly, if social distancing is what we must do to control the spread… Continue Reading