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Meeting on the future of Martin’s and the nearby clearcut

Changes are on the way for the shopping center, find out what is being proposed.

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The local rumor mills have been working overtime with what’s going into the soon to be vacant Martin’s and the sizable clearcut next door. I don’t have any definite answer but if you attend the meeting that Councilwoman Kristen Larson posted in here newsletter:

Thursday, April 6th, 6:00 pm – 7101 Forest Hill Ave F
The Manager of the Shops at Stratford Hills shopping center is holding a community meeting at 6 pm on Thursday, April 6 in the vacant storefront adjacent to Tuesday Morning (7101 Forest Hill Ave F, Richmond, VA 23225).  The discussion will outline proposed changes to the Center concerning the pending departure of Martins, and proposed enhancements to signage, access, landscaping, as well as new retailers along Forest Hill Ave east of the intersection with Cherokee.  The meeting will offer the opportunity for community input and feedback on the plans, which will go before City Council for zoning approval.

For more information, please contact Preston Lloyd at [email protected].

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Richard Hayes is the co-founder of RVAHub. When he isn't rounding up neighborhood news, he's likely watching soccer or chasing down the latest and greatest board game.

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Two Gun Incidents in Two Days in James River Park

There were no injuries and at least two arrests in the incidents.

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In case your COVID-19 internment wasn’t giving you enough to stress about we’ve seen two firearm incidents this week in James River Park.

The first one was reported by RTD.

A man and a woman from Ohio have been accused of discharging a firearm in the James River Park System off Riverside Drive in South Richmond.

Shortly before 11 a.m. on Tuesday, officers were patrolling the park in the 4200 block of Riverside Drive when two people discharged a gun “on the trail area” near the West 42nd Street entrance, the authorities said. The police did not further specify the location in the park, but the area runs along the south side of the James River.

“They were not trying to shoot at anyone else or each other,” said police spokeswoman Chelsea Rarrick. “It was reckless discharge.”

Tony Isaac Jr., 27, of Springfield, Ohio, was charged with discharging a firearm in a public place, possession of a firearm in a city park and possession of a firearm as a felon, police said.

Jayona M. Franklin, 19, of Xenia, Ohio, was charged with discharging a firearm in a public place and possession of a firearm in a city park.

As someone who walks that trail a bunch the fact that “They were not trying to shoot at anyone else or each other,” doesn’t make me feel any better.

The other incident is equally scary and occurred yesterday on Belle Isle.

From the Woodland Heights Neighborhood Association Facebook.

A group of 10 or 12 teens hanging out and this young man brandishing a handgun. He was pointing it at hikers, kayakers and yelling “Pop,pop, pop!” Loud enough you could hear him over the rapids. The police showed up but I don’t know what came of it.

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Arrest Made in Forest Hill Avenue Rape

The incident occurred in the 4000 block of Forest Hill Avenue on August 4, 2019.

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From RPD:

Richmond Police Department detectives, with the assistance of the U.S. Marshals Regional Fugitive Task Force and Second Precinct patrol officers, have made an arrest in connection with a rape that happened last August.

Victor M. Manuel, 32, of the 3300 block of Shady Creek Road, Chesterfield, VA was apprehended today. He has been charged with rape in connection with an incident that occurred in the 4000 block of Forest Hill Avenue on August 4, 2019. His booking photo is attached.

Detectives want to thank the public for their assistance in this case.

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Critters of the Week

A wild critter we spotted in the RVA area and a critter up for adoption by SPCA or RACC.

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Where Spotted: Westover Hills
Common Name:  Common Starling or European Starling
Scientific Name: Sturnus vulgaris
Length: 7.5–9.1 in
Weight: 2.0–3.6 oz
Wingspan: 12–17 in

Quick Facts Courtesy of All About Birds

  • All the European Starlings in North America descended from 100 birds set loose in New York’s Central Park in the early 1890s. The birds were intentionally released by a group who wanted America to have all the birds that Shakespeare ever mentioned. There are now over 200 million European Starlings and they range from Alaska to Mexico.
  • Because of their recent arrival in North America, all of our starlings are closely related. Genetically, individuals from Virginia are nearly indistinguishable from starlings sampled in California, 3,000 miles away. Such little genetic variation often spells trouble for rare species, but seems to offer no ill effects to starlings so far.
  • Starlings are strong fliers that can get up to speeds of 48 mph.
  • In studies of starlings’ sense of taste, scientists have discovered that they can taste salt, sugars, citric acid, and tannins (bitter compounds that occur in many fruits, including acorns and grapes). They can tell the difference between sucrose (table sugar) and other kinds of sugars – helpful since starlings lack the ability to digest sucrose.
  • Starlings are great vocal mimics: individuals can learn the calls of up to 20 different species. Birds whose songs starlings often copy include the Eastern Wood-Pewee, Killdeer, meadowlarks, Northern Bobwhite, Wood Thrush, Red-tailed Hawk, American Robin, Northern Flicker, and many others.

 

Benjamin at Richmond SPCA

Behold! The bold and beautiful…erm…handsome Benjamin! Have you been yearning for a pal who will cuddle up with you at night? Is your heart aching for some TLC that can only be cured by toe pads and whiskers? Well then we have the best little buddy for you! If you’re interested in finally taking home your new best friend, come ask to meet with Benjamin today!

Age: 8 years, 3 months
Gender: Neutered Male
Color: Black
Declawed: No
ID: 43463251

Adopt Benjamin at Richmond SPCA

Learn more about their adoption process.

To reduce visitor traffic, during the COVID-19 outbreak they are scheduling adoption appointments beginning Tuesday, March 17, 2020. Please leave your phone number in a voicemail or email and an adoption counselor will call to set an appointment for you to meet with a pet. Email the adoption center or call 804-521-1307.

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