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Colonial Heights October 2020 Update

NEWSLETTER Story Highlights

Colonial Heights Recreation and Parks receives multiple awards at VRPS State Conference

In the beginning of October, over 150 delegates from around the state gathered virtually last week at the 65th Annual Conference of the Virginia Recreation and Park Society held online. The conference is a learning exchange and provides an opportunity for recreation and park professionals to discuss areas of common interest.

Highlighting each year’s conference is a formal presentation of awards. This state-wide program honors individuals, departments and organizations throughout Virginia who have demonstrated excellence in any of several areas during the previous year.

Judged by a jury of its peers, Colonial Heights Recreation and Parks received awards for the following programs and initiatives for localities with a population under 25,000: Best Health and Wellness Initiative; Most Innovative Marketing Strategy; and the Distinguished Private Sector Service Award (more highlights below).

The mission of the Virginia Recreation and Park Society is to unite all professionals, students, and interested lay persons engaged in the field of recreation, parks, and other leisure services in the Commonwealth of Virginia. For more information on the Society contact the state office at 804-730-9447 or visit the website at www.vrps.com

For additional Recreation & Parks Department programs and information, you can visit their website at https://www.colonialheightsva.gov/256/Recreation-Parks or call (804)520-9390.

Violet Bank Museum: Most Innovative Marketing Strategy category for the Violet Bank ROCKS! Marketing strategy for Violet Bank Museum.

Violet Bank Rocks! was conceptualized as a way to spread positivity while reaching a demographic that may not normally visit a historic house museum. The violet purple rocks are part of an overall color branding effort to tie in that color to Violet Bank Museum. This color branding is being reinforced by the use of a light violet color on the cover of a newly redesigned and updated museum brochure. This is being done in an attempt to make Violet Bank Museum stand out and be noticed in the overly saturated field of historic house museums. (Click here for more details)

Distinguished Private Sector Service Award category was presented to The Maddie Mann Foundation for their work on the Maddie’s Magnificent Playpark located at White Bank Park.

The Maddie Mann Foundation for Accessible Play’s mission is to: promotes community support and sponsorship to enrich the lives of our special need population, our senior citizens and wounded military citizens through recreation, education, inclusion, and socialization with their peers.

Jaime Mann, founder of The Maddie Mann Foundation for Accessible Play, choked back tears as she spoke to the crowd who gathered before her on December 7th, 2019. It took 5 years to get to this point – the summit to a climb that on some days felt insurmountable. Together with the City of Colonial Heights, faithful volunteers, and Play 4 ALL – the social impact division of Cunningham Recreation, a $266,000 play campaign was waged and won.

This flagship playground was a beacon of hope for many years to so many people and is now a reality. “The City of Colonial Heights was excited to partner with Maddie Mann Foundation, Play 4 ALL and Cunningham Recreation to bring a barrier free playground to White Bank Park. We are experiencing a tremendous increase in attendance to the park thanks to the playground” Parks Director Craig Skalak shared. (For more details click here)

(Photo courtesy of Larry Tipton)

Best Health and Wellness Initiative category for the Healthy Lifestyle and Diabetes Education Class at the Senior Center.

In response to the diabetes crisis that we see here in our own community, Colonial Heights Recreation and Parks developed the Healthy Lifestyle and Diabetes Education Class to help guide our citizens to a healthier life thereby possibly preventing the onset of diabetes or gaining control of their diabetes.

This small group class is limited to ten participants with weekly one-hour meetings that run for twelve consecutive weeks. For more program information, please click here or call the Senior Center at (804)520-9220.

Colonial Heights Economic Development Update

Economic Development would like to share a wave of positive news for business in Colonial Heights. Colonial Heights still continues to be the “Center of All Things Retail” in the Crater Region.

In mid-April, the first franchised Extended Stay America opened, just as Covid-19 began escalating. This brand-new, beautiful hotel, full of amenities, is located directly behind Sedona Taphouse.

In June, City Council passed an ordinance allowing restaurants to expand patio seating on sidewalks and in parking lots in an effort to encourage restaurant dining. Furthermore, City Council allocated $500,000 from CARES Act Funding to the Economic Development Authority for the creation of a small business grant program. As of October 15,2020, a total of $385,000 has been awarded to sixty-eight small businesses in Colonial Heights. The City has welcomed several new restaurants who triumphed opening in the midst of a pandemic.

Boil Bay at 1829 Southpark Blvd, between Gold’s Gym and Party City; Volcano Crab at 204 Southgate Square in the Southgate Square Shopping Center, and Wings and Burgers Factory – WNB in Colonial Square Shopping Center.
In addition to restaurants, Boot Barn, a western wear company with 200 stores across 33 states is constructing a store adjacent to the Home Depot on Conduit Road. An opening date has not been announced at this time.

New Ways to pass the time!

Photos courtesy of Tatianna Hoosack, Member of Colonial Heights Photo Club

For long time local resident, Darla Tipton, finds joy in Magnet Fishing. Magnet fishing is exactly what it sounds like: fishing, with magnets. Tie a rope onto a magnet and throw it in the water. If you’re lucky, it will stick to something that you can haul out and take home. "My dream is to find an old musket, something with good history. I find trash and old items. It's a way to give back, clean the river, and have fun!" said Darla.

Did you know that Colonial Heights is almost entirely surrounded by water? We have several water access points for you and your family to enjoy. So the next time you want to get out and enjoy the great outdoors, come visit one of our beautiful river parks: Roslyn Landing Park (Boat Ramp, hiking/biking trail, and fishing) Appamatuck Park (Newly completed Appomattox River Trail Section), Whitebank Park (Home of Maddie's Magnificant Playground, disc golf course, boat ramp, and picnic pavilions), and Fort Clifton Park (hiking/biking trails, pavilion, playground, and fishing pier). For a list of all of our parks and their amenities, click here!

Upcoming Community Events...

Join us for this self-guided Halloween Drive Thru event. Local businesses will be providing FREE candy for families looking to have fun on Halloween night! And more importantly for the kids, FREE CANDY! Wear your Halloween costumes and enjoy a safe way to get out this Halloween. This is a drive-thru event, so please remain in your cars and drive-thru the designated area in front of businesses. Pre-registration in highly recommended, but not required. Click HERE to register online or call us at (804)520-9390. Click HERE for Participating business's information.

There is so much to do in Colonial Heights.

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