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Hills & Heights

Weekend Event Picks: Richmond Jazz Festival, Carytown Watermelon Festival, Filipino Festival, & more

World-class Jazz, Filipino and Tibetan culture, NFL football, and watermelon all intersect for a fun-filled outdoor weekend around Richmond.

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Redskins Training Camp Fan Appreciation Day

The Washington Redskins are hosting their annual Fan Appreciation Day this Saturday–a chance for fans to get up close and personal with their favorite players. Following practice, both players and coaches will be available to sign autographs and take pictures, schedules permitting, at the Bon Secours Washington Redskins Training Center on W. Leigh Street. The team and Bon Secours will also offer health screenings, giveaways, and more.

When: Saturday, August 13th; 1:30 – 3:30 PM | Where: Bon Secours Washington Redskins Training Center, 2401 W. Leigh Street | Cost: FREE | Training Camp website

Richmond Jazz Festival

The Richmond Jazz Festival returns for its seventh year this weekend with an impressive bill of nationally- and internationally-known jazz, blues, and funk acts. The fun began Thursday evening at Hardywood and the Virginia Museum of Fine Arts, and continues Saturday and Sunday at Maymont, where hot acts such as Herbie Hancock, The Roots, Al Jarreau, Michael Franks, Esperanza Spalding, Vanessa Williams, Ramsey Lewis, Diane Schuur, Grace Kelly, and Arrested Development will perform. In addition to live jazz, the festival will also feature complimentary wine tasting by Ste. Michelle Wine Estates, as well as chef demonstrations, artist meet-and-greets, and over 30 food and merchandise vendors from across the region.

When: Thursday, August 11th – Sunday, August 14th; view schedule | Where: The Hippodrome Theater, the VMFA, Hardywood Park Craft Brewery, and Maymont | Cost: View available packages | Festival website

Filipino Festival

For over a decade, the Filipino Festival has been a popular community showcase of the richness of the Filipino culture and heritage. The festival features a wide variety of traditional food, music, folk dancing, and more. It also serves as a cultural immersion program for more than 100 youth of Filipino descent each year. For nine months, they are immersed in bi-weekly classes that teach them their parents’ language, culture, stories, history, dances and songs to pass down to future generations.

When: Friday, August 12th 5:00 – 10:00 PM;  Saturday, August 13th 10:00 AM – 10:00 PM | Where: Our Lady of Lourdes, 8200 Woodman Road in the West End | Cost: FREE to attend | Festival website

Carytown Watermelon Festival

This annual celebration of watermelon and the dog days of summer takes place along Richmond’s Mile of Style, Carytown, this Sunday. Expect a bevy of local food and retail vendors, food and drink specials at many of Carytown’s unique and vibrant restaurants, live music, and of course, plenty of cold, fresh watermelon sliced up and served by the bowl. Last year festival organizers estimate over 118,000 people attended–quite a crowd. If you live in the neighborhood, keep in mind that parking is restricted on W. Cary Street and towing will begin at 2:00 AM Sunday morning.

When: Sunday, August 14th; 10:00 AM – 6:00 PM | Where: Carytown, West Cary Street between Nansemond Street and N. Boulevard | Cost: FREE to attend | Festival website

Public Sand Mandala Celebration at the Virginia Holocaust Museum

Tibetan Monks of the Drepung Loseling Monastery will be at the Virginia Holocaust Museum this weekend for a unique event. For the past several days, the monks have been creating a sand mandala–a Tibetan Buddhist tradition as much about creation as it is destruction. Watch them create this work of art or join in and even help fill in the design. There will also be lectures and daily evening meditation at 6:00 PM. At the closing ceremony around noon on Sunday, the monks will destroy the mandala and release the sand into the James River to spread blessings upon the world.

When: Ongoing through Sunday, August 14th at noon; various times | Where: Virginia Holocaust Museum, 2000 E. Cary Street in Downtown Richmond | Cost: FREE to attend; $10 suggested donation | Event page

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Community

Road Closures for Richmond Folk Festival

Quick summary, all the roads around Brown’s Island

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Road Closures/No Parking 4 p.m., Friday, Oct 7 – 11:59 p.m., Sunday, Oct 9 Starting Friday afternoon, several roads near Brown’s Island will close through the weekend for the Richmond Folk Festival. Parking will be prohibited.

Road specifics.

  • North 6th Street between East Broad and East Grace streets
  • Tredegar Street between South 7th Street and Belle Isle lot
  • South 10th Street between Haxall Point and Federal Reserve Bank
  • Spring Street between South 2nd and Belvidere streets
  • East Byrd Street between South 2nd and South 7th streets
  • South 2nd Street between Lee Bridge off ramp and East Byrd Street
  • South 3rd Street between East Canal and East Byrd streets
  • South 4th Street between East Canal and East Byrd streets
  • South 5th Street between East Canal and Tredegar streets

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We need your help. RVAHub is a small, independent publication, and we depend on our readers to help us provide a vital community service. If you enjoy our content, would you consider a donation as small as $5? We would be immensely grateful! Interested in advertising your business, organization, or event? Get the details here.

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Community

Friends of Fonticello Park Launch New Website and Continue Work to Improve Park

Learn more about efforts to make Fonticello/Carter Jones become a park that serves and enriches the community.

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Fonticello/Carter Jones Park has been around in one form or another since 1915. The surrounding area was subdivided and sold as lots, but the 11 acre section remained undeveloped as a park, and Fonticello Park was created alongside the establishment of the Woodland Heights and Swansboro neighborhoods. In 1924, soon after the land was annexed by Richmond, Councilman Carter Jones successfully advocated for the continued use of the land as a park, saving it from development. The park was subsequently renamed for him.

In 2020, the Friends group is made up of neighborhood volunteers who advocate for and collaborate to maintain and improve the park after years of neglect and deferred maintenance.

The Friends of Fonticello Park is actively involved in working with the City of Richmond through the Department of Parks, Recreation and Community Facilities to make improvements to the park that are aligned with the needs and vision of the community.

Friends of Fonticello Park recently launched a new slick website (https://fonticelloparkrva.com/) and Instagram @carterjonesfriends. Instagram looks to be a great way to keep up on what’s coming up in the Park and get involved. For example there is a planning meeting tonight.

There are four main areas in the park that the Friends are working to improve right now.

  • The Food Forest – Currently our FREE FarmStand is every Wednesday. Community members can visit any weekly Farm Stand to help set up, break down, go through produce for compost, or help in the food forest with weeding or planting. There’s always lots to do on Wednesdays.Our vision is to transition the FarmStand into an “always open” rotating free farm stand and food pantry, assisted by a network of volunteers who gather viable produce and rotate it into the farm stand while composting what can no longer be used.
  • Dog Park – During the pandemic shut down in 2020, all organized sports at the baseball fields came to a halt. During this time of social isolation, many came to use the baseball fields as a safe space to run their dogs. The park eventually placed “no dog” signs at the entrance of the fields and used heavy chains and locks to prevent people from entering. This didn’t stop people from using their park and fields to exercise their dogs in a safe way in a large expanse of unused space. It was during this time that the need for a dog park became evident.A group of neighbors are currently working together to envision what a dog park could be in order to present their plan to the city. They held their first meeting on August 28th, 2022. After hearing community feedback, the group in attendance felt the eastern baseball field (decommissioned) would be the best place to put a dog park to address concerns about noise and location. Meeting notes can be viewed on the Agendas page and this page will be updated throughout the process to keep the community abreast of the plan and progress.
  • Skate Park – The current conceptual plan and recent community surveys have all advocated to prioritize an expanded skate park. At the meeting held on September 14, 2022, the city stated there was no funding to move forward and that the community would need to raise funds for this expansion.Our plan is to continue to work with both the City and skateboarders to prioritize the expansion of the skatepark. If you are interested in getting involved in this work, please let us know on the form on the Get Involved page.
  • Native Meadow– During the September 21, 2022, Friends of Fonticello Park meeting with Parks and Recreation, Shamar Young proposed that the city could begin immediately working on a native meadow in the old playground space. He indicated they would be willing to till and level the area and plant wildflower seed in that space as part of the city’s attempt to become a “Bee City” .While this idea was intriguing, unfortunately, wildflower mixes are only native to the country usually, not the region. While they would provide immediate gratification, the Friends of Fonticello Park would rather see this done with true native plants from our local ecosystems. We want to make this an educational space in the park, where community members can come to learn about local ecosystem plants, how they support wildlife and native pollinators, increase soil health, and contribute to cleaner waterways. Our hope is that we may even be able to support seed sharing for folks to plant in their own yard gardens.
  • The Spring – They’re also looking at reopening the natural spring that is in the park but there are numerous hurdles including water quality etc. with that plan.

If you want to help the most obvious way is to follow them on Instagram, and check out the website to get involved with meetings and workdays.

Another way to help is to make a financial donation. The Friends have partnered with Verdant Richmond to accept donations.

Verdant Richmond was founded in May, 2017 to address the – at times – poor condition of Richmond’s parks and public green spaces.  Through volunteer efforts and charitable donations from the community, local small businesses, and the city’s large corporations and foundations, we work to revive and maintain the green spaces that provide moments of tranquility to the city’s residents.

Will you help support independent, local journalism?

We need your help. RVAHub is a small, independent publication, and we depend on our readers to help us provide a vital community service. If you enjoy our content, would you consider a donation as small as $5? We would be immensely grateful! Interested in advertising your business, organization, or event? Get the details here.

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Community

Snack Collection for Westover Hills Elementary

Everyone deserves a snack.

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The good folks over at Westover Hills United Methodist Church (1711 Westover Hills Blvd) are helping out Westover Hill Elementary students and you can help as well.

The WHUMC Connect Group is collecting snacks for Westover Hills Elementary! We will be organizing and delivering the snacks at our October 12th meeting and would love to have donations in by then. If you are able to donate, please feel free to drop off at the church! Thank you!

Will you help support independent, local journalism?

We need your help. RVAHub is a small, independent publication, and we depend on our readers to help us provide a vital community service. If you enjoy our content, would you consider a donation as small as $5? We would be immensely grateful! Interested in advertising your business, organization, or event? Get the details here.

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