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Weekend Event Picks: Armenian Food Festival, St. Benedict Oktoberfest, sunflowers and more

Enjoy two delicious food festivals, get outside on Brown’s Island with your best (furry) friend, enjoy outdoor arts and crafts, and much more.

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Armenian Food Festival

If you’re in the mood for good Mediterranean fare, St. James Armenian Church is the place to be this weekend. The church is hosting the 58th annual Armenian Food Festival in the Near West End.

The festival features a wide selection of traditional Armenian food, wine, and beer, plus live music on the festival stage throughout the weekend. You’ll find a few culinary similarities to the larger Greek and Lebanese food festivals, but with a slightly smaller crowd and fewer lines, which is never a bad thing.

When: Friday, September 16th – Sunday, September 18th; times vary | Where: St. James Armenian Church, 834 Pepper Avenue in the Near West End | Cost: Free entry, pay as you go at food and drink tents | Event website

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St. Benedict Oktoberfest

The 12th annual St. Benedict Oktoberfest, a celebration of some of the best things about German culture–beer, food, and music–takes place this weekend at St. Benedict Catholic Church in the Museum District. The fun kicks off Friday evening in the church’s parking lot.

Expect a bevy of German food including the popular Wurst Platter (the best way to sample some of the festival’s most popular offerings) with bratwurst, knockwurst, weisswurst, sauerkraut, and German potato salad, or make your way through the tents and purchase a-la-carte.

The ever-popular beer trucks will have 47 brews on tap, including a number of local favorites. Hardywood Park Craft Brewery will also have their own tent featuring six beers throughout the weekend.

The festival will also have events and competitions throughout the weekend including the ever-popular stein-holding competition.

 

Visit the event website for more information.

When: Friday, September 16th – Sunday, September 18th; times vary | Where: St. Benedict Catholic Church, 300 N. Sheppard Street in the Museum District | Cost: Free entry, pay as you go at food and drink tents | Event website

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All You Can Pick Sunflower Weekend

Lickinghole Creek Craft Brewery continues its All You Can Pick Sunflower Weekend Saturday and Sunday at the brewery in Goochland. Visitors can take photos and pick sunflowers free of charge, enjoy craft beer in the taproom, listen to live music, and grab grub from on-site food trucks.

When: Friday, September 16th – Sunday, September 18th; times vary | Where: Lickinghole Creek Craft Brewery, 4100 Knolls Point Drive in Goochland | Cost: Free entry, pay as you go for beer and food | Event website

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43rd Street Festival of the Arts

The 43rd Street Festival of the Arts is a great opportunity to check out arts and crafts just outside your front door (if you live in Forest Hill, anyway) on Saturday. Expect lots of arts and crafts from local artists, food, and live music throughout the day from Rachel Leyco, Blue Line Highway, Elana Lisa and the Hot Mess, Bluz Catz, and Janet Martin.

Check out the Festival of the Arts Facebook page for more information.

When: Saturday, September 17th; 10:00 AM – 5:00 PM | Where: Forest Hill Avenue and 43rd Street in Forest Hill | Cost: FREE | Event website

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RTD Fido Fest

RTD Fido Fest is back at Brown’s Island for another year. This festival features a full lineup of activities for you and your pooch to enjoy including the Ultimate Air Dogs competition (where dogs jump as far as they can off a platform into a pool of water), a dog dock jumping competition, a pet photo booth, agility demonstrations, vendors and more. The Richmond SPCA’s Tail Wag’N will be on site for adoptions, too.

When: Saturday, September 17th; 11:00 AM – 6:00 PM | Where: Brown’s Island, Downtown Richmond riverfront | Cost: $8 in advance, $10 at the door | Tickets and more information

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Get Outdoors RVA

Isley Brewing Company is assembling some of the area’s best outdoor activity providers for the first ever “Get Outdoors RVA” this Saturday. The event takes place in the back alley of Isley Brewing Company from 2:00 – 7:00 PM.

Participants include Richmond Cycling Corps with bike demos, Peak Experiences Indoor Rock Climbing Center with climbing challenges and exclusive membership offers, Fleet Feet Richmond with a group run beginning and ending at the brewery, Walkabout Outfitter selling outdoor gear, and X-Team Fitness with details on their outdoor fitness program.

Live music will be provided by Vanilla Summit and Dalton Dash; the Sammich food truck will be on hand as well.

Check out the Facebook event for more information.

When: Saturday, September 17th; 2:00 – 7:00 PM | Where: Isley Brewing Company, 1715 Summit Avenue in Scott’s Addition | Cost: Free entry, pay as you go for beer and food truck fare | Event website

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Arts & Entertainment

PHOTOS: Circle Center Adult Day Services unveils massive new mural

Richmond-based artist Nico Cathcart designed and painted the 75-foot wide mural.

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Local adult services provider Circle Center Adult Day Services will be unveiling an unprecedented work of art to its supporters on Wednesday, December 7th at 8:30 a.m.

Richmond-based artist Nico Cathcart designed and painted the 75’ wide by 18’ tall mural on Circle Center’s building at 4900 West Marshall Street near Willow Lawn. The mural features four people who attend Circle Center.

“It’s simply breathtaking in its size and in how well Nico captured the personalities of Mike, Elizabeth, Banoo, and Winston,” says Heather Turbyne-Pollard, Circle Center’s CEO. Nico collaborated with local artist and photographer Caroline Shelnut to bring her concept to life.

“Once I learned about Circle Center and witnessed the dignity and respect with which they treat everyone who attends their programs, I was inspired,” says Nico. “I reached out to Caroline because of her recent photography series.”

Caroline Shelnut, Creative Arts Coordinator for Hermitage Richmond, has taken over 30 Renaissance-inspired photographs of the residents with whom she works. “What I love about Renaissance art is that it features people of all ages,” said Caroline. She went on to say, “Whenever I photograph older adults, I want them to see themselves the way that I see them, as wonderful, valuable, and beautiful human beings.”

Circle Center’s unveiling will start at 8:30 a.m. on December 7th, rain or shine, and will include Nico signing the mural. In addition, Heather Turbyne-Pollard will interview Nico and Caroline about what Nico calls the “Age and Grace” mural. The four Circle Center participants who served as models will also be in attendance.

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Arts & Entertainment

New book chronicling Richmond’s music scene by local music journalist now available

Richmond music lover and former music journalist Andrew Cothern, better known in Richmond music circles as “RVA Playlist,” has announced the release of his first book, RVA Playlist: Stories from the Richmond, Virginia Music Scene.

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Richmond music lover and former music journalist Andrew Cothern, better known in Richmond music circles as “RVA Playlist,” has announced the release of his first book, RVA Playlist: Stories from the Richmond, Virginia Music Scene.

Cothern has been a music journalist, blogger, show goer, and champion supporter of the Richmond, Virginia music scene for nearly two decades. RVA Playlist: Stories from the Richmond, Virginia Music Scene shares more than 30 different stories of his life covering Richmond’s vibrant music scene from 2006 to 2016.

Highlights include him calling six bands by the wrong name in an interview, being embarrassingly drunk at a growing pop icon’s live performance, and trying to figure out why live music shows never start on time.

From the MashUp web series to Friday Cheers to the Ghost of Pop festival to the multiple RVA Playlist Anniversary Parties and more, this book is Cothern’s love letter to the RVA music scene.

RVA Playlist: Stories from the Richmond, Virginia Music Scene is available now in paperback and eBook. Click here to order online.

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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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Arts & Entertainment

VMFA acquires extensive photography book collection

“This collection is a transformative donation and has greatly increased our holdings in the subject areas of American and European photography,” said Alex Nyerges, VMFA’s Director and CEO.

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The Virginia Museum of Fine Arts (VMFA) has announced the gift of a significant library of more than 2,000 American and European photography books, donated by Barry and Gretchen Singer.

“This collection is a transformative donation and has greatly increased our holdings in the subject areas of American and European photography,” said Alex Nyerges, VMFA’s Director and CEO. “These books are already proving invaluable to exhibitions developed by the Virginia Museum of Fine Arts, and this gift further supports the museum’s future photography galleries that are being planned as part of our current expansion project.”

Barry Singer has been one of the country’s leading photography gallerists with a prominent gallery in Petaluma, California, specializing in 19th- and 20th-century photography. “A 2019 conversation with Alex at Paris Photo about the future of my large library of photography books led to my decision to give the collection to VMFA,” said Singer. “I knew that the museum would be able to ensure their care and value their importance, and that the books would be fundamental to VMFA’s other collections and exhibitions.”

Several significant monographs and reference books have been added to the general collection at VMFA’s Margaret R. and Robert M. Freeman Library, and many exceptional photography books and periodicals, including first editions and signed copies, are now part of VMFA’s rare book collection. The Singers’ gift includes the first edition of Robert Frank’s The Americans, published as Les Américains by Robert Delpire in 1958, Josef Sudek Fotografie by Czech film and photography critic Lubomír Linhart, published in 1956, and a first edition of Naked City by legendary photojournalist Weegee, published in 1945.

“This donation is especially relevant because the books relate directly to photographs in VMFA’s collection,” said Lee Ceperich, Director of Library and Special Collections at VMFA. “The library exists to support research about the art collection, tell stories and make connections between the art and the widest audience possible.”

Sarah Kennel, the museum’s Aaron Siskind Curator of Photography and Director of the Raysor Center, notes that many of these rare photography books will augment VMFA’s exhibitions. “One of the most important ways that photography has circulated in the past century is through the photo book, so these very rare editions are an exciting expansion to our holdings and allow us to better show how photography has shaped modern culture.” Included in the donated collection are two books featuring works by Ansel Adams, Michael and Anne in the Yosemite Valley (1941) and The Four Seasons in Yosemite National Park: A Photographic Story of Yosemite’s Spectacular Scenery (1940) — both of which appeared in VMFA’s traveling exhibition Ansel Adams: Compositions in Nature. Additionally, other books from the collection were used to inform the development of the museum’s exhibition Man Ray: The Paris Years and still others will be featured in the upcoming exhibition American, Born Hungary planned to open at VMFA in 2024.

VMFA’s Margaret R. and Robert M. Freeman Library and Special Collections is the most comprehensive art museum research library in the southeastern United States. With more than 150,000 volumes and 200 periodical titles, it provides important resources for the study of art. The library’s archives and rare book holdings include primary source material related to the history and activities of VMFA, the museum’s art collection, the history of art and artists in Virginia.

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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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