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Violent weekend demonstrators caused more than $100,000 in damages to VCU, surrounding area

“It is heartbreaking to see extensive damage at our Monroe Park Campus following a violent demonstration overnight in Richmond, President Michael Rao said. “About 80 windows were broken in a dozen buildings along with site furnishings dragged onto the street and damaged and numerous buildings tagged with graffiti.”

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Weekend protests and riots in and around the Fan and VCU area caused more than $100,000 in damage to university property, with the price tag much higher for businesses in the surrounding area that had windows smashed out or were tagged with graffiti.

The Richmond Times-Dispatch recapped the night’s events, saying:

After 24 days without major clashes between police and protesters, demonstrations on Saturday night into Sunday morning ended with six arrests, damage to several businesses and VCU properties, and a city dump truck in flames outside Richmond police headquarters.

City officials said supporters of both left-wing and right-wing movements attended the protests, which were advertised as being in support of protesters in Portland, Ore.

Richmond Mayor Levar Stoney said at a news conference on Sunday that white supremacists marched among the hundreds of protesters who wove through downtown Richmond before stopping at the Richmond Police Department headquarters.

Continue reading their coverage here.

VCU President Michael Rao released a statement on the vandalism on Sunday, reading in full:

To the University and VCU Health Communities,

It is heartbreaking to see extensive damage at our Monroe Park Campus following a violent demonstration overnight in Richmond. About 80 windows were broken in a dozen buildings along with site furnishings dragged onto the street and damaged and numerous buildings tagged with graffiti. Damage is being assessed now, but it is expected to be more than $100,000.

Both Richmond and VCU Police tell us the demonstrators were different last night compared to those participating in other peaceful demonstrations that occurred in Richmond over the last several weeks. The protest was promoted in social media and flyers to be destructive, ostensibly to support protests in Portland. We are concerned about groups that promote destruction and violence co-opting important social justice reform movements.

VCU supports free speech and stands in solidarity with those peacefully expressing messages of social justice and equity for all people. VCU does not condone – under any circumstance – acts of violence or vandalism, regardless of the purported cause.

Violence against people and deliberate destruction of property are contrary to the values of our community and will not be tolerated. VCU has asked the Commonwealth’s Attorney to press criminal charges against any individuals involved.

The safety of our university and health system campuses are of paramount importance. Our greatest contribution to equity and inclusion of our people is to provide a conducive environment for learning, working, living and health care for our students, patients, faculty, staff and health care team members.

I am confident that you, too, share our commitment to social justice and equality, peaceful expression and also our repudiation of violence and vandalism.

Sincerely,

Michael Rao
President, VCU and VCU Health System

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PREVIEW: Kickers vs Madison

This is the second attempt to host a home opener for the Richmond Kickers. This is also the only professional sports being played Richmond and perhaps the state.

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Opponent: Forward Madison FC (0, 1, 1)
Date/Time: Saturday, Aug. 8th, – 6:30 PM
Last Result: Kickers 0 – Tormenta FC 0

Weather Forecast from Weatherbug.com:

Three Things to Kick About

  1. Goodbye Conor – Defesenive stalwart Conor Shanosky surprised the fans with announcement on Thursday that he and the Kickers have agreed to release him from his contract. One of the few Kickers veterans, a fan favorite, he’ll be missed. The Kicker wasted no time in replenishing their defense and signed Hassan Pinto out of Duke University. This is Hassan’s first pro-contract.
  2. Rest – The team’s official home opener was last week but was canceled due to Covid-19 concerns. Forward Madison played last week so in theory, the Kicker should be more rested. Hopefully, that rest translates into high pressure and mistakes by the visitors. Due to the schedule teams are allowed 5 subs this season so that rest mentioned above might not be as big of a factor as I hope.
  3. Who are we? – The Kickers have only played two games, none at home. We really don’t have a good idea on the identity of this team and new coach Darren Sawatzky. This game should give us a better idea but it certainly won’t give us the full picture.
  4.  Bonus Round of Henny – Take the time to read this article about the special meaning behind this game and the Henny Cup. Get the Henny! Soccer and a Celebration of Black Culture

Prediction

Forward Madison FC has nearly the same record as the Kickers. Both teams have only played 2 games, have lost one, tied one, and have a -1 goal differential. I’ve seen the Kickers play once on television and they looked tired and for the most part unthreatening as a result of having to play two games in four days. Most of the Kickers roster is new to me and to Forward Madison. I’m going strictly with the gut and know that the Kickers and Coach Sawatzky are desperate for a home win.

Kickers 2  Forward Madison 0

Official Kickers Match Preview

The Richmond Kickers (0-1-1) 2020 Home Opener, presented by Woodfin is this Saturday at 6:30 p.m. as they host league rivals Forward Madison FC (0-1-1). A limited number of single match tickets are available now at RichmondKickers.com/Tickets. The match will air live on WTVR CBS 6.3 (Comcast 206, Verizon FiOS 466) and streaming on ESPN+.

The fourth edition of the already lively rivalry between the Kickers and the ‘Mingos sees both sides seeking their first wins after scrappy 0-1-1 starts to the abridged 2020 season. Better known as the Henny Derby as created by the black supporters of both clubs, bragging rights for the season are on the line with the League One Final as the only other opportunity for the teams to face each other this season.

Richmond closed out a two-match road trip last Tuesday night, earning their first point of the season in a 0-0 draw at South Georgia Tormenta FC. Akira Fitzgerald put up a man of the match performance with eight saves en route to the first clean sheet of the season — a performance later awarded with a Team of the Week nod from the USL. The Kickers came close on a couple of occasions from both Ryley Kraft and Emiliano Terzaghi that forced worldly saves from the Tormenta keeper. Now, the team is raring to open their City Stadium campaign after the original home opener on Aug. 1 against Fort Lauderdale CF was postponed to a later date.

Madison opened its season with a 2-1 loss at 2019 League One Champions North Texas SC. The FC Dallas-affiliated North Texas took an early 11th minute lead before Madison’s marquee 2020 offseason signing Wojciech Wojcik scored from close-range — a signature of the forward’s. However, North Texas would regain the lead thanks to the efforts of 2019 Golden Boot winner Ronaldo Damus who delivered the 2-1 lead that would hold until the final whistle. The following matchweek, Madison would find its first point of the season by holding current league-leaders Greenville Triumph SC to a 0-0 result. Madison was tenacious on defense as it clamped down on a Greenville team that enjoyed five goals in its opening two matches.

The Kickers continue a two match homestand next Saturday night as FC Tucson comes to City Stadium for a 6:30 p.m. kickoff. Tickets are on sale now at RichmondKickers.com/Tickets.

Stay up to date with the latest news from the Kickers at RichmondKickers.com and on the official team app.

WTVR CBS 6 Players to Watch
Richmond: Goalkeeper Akira Fitzgerald (#1) earned his first shutout of the 2020 season last Tuesday night against Tormenta FC behind eight saves, earning him a spot on the USL League One Team of the Week for Week 3. The veteran keeper is coming off a 2019 season that saw him named a finalist for the USL League One Goalkeeper of the Year after nine shutouts. Midfielder Ryley Kraft (#98) has put up a strong effort in the attacking third through the first two matches, including having one of his shots saved at Tormenta that looked to be goal bound. Kraft signed with the Kickers midway through the 2019 season and has been a regular in the lineup since making his debut. Defender Kyle Venter (#12) played his first match for Richmond against Tormenta, playing 54 minutes in his first action for the Kickers. Venter led all of the Kickers completing 86.2 percent of his passes.

Madison: Forward Wojciech Wojcik (#9) scored the lone goal for Madison this season in their season opening loss to 2019 champions North Texas SC. The Poland native signed for the club after 31 appearances for Hartford Athletic, scoring seven goals for the USL Championship side. Defender Connor Tobin (#13) returned to Madison for his second season with the club, playing 90 minutes in both of the opening matches. He joined Madison after five seasons with North Carolina FC, playing in 129 matches. Goalkeeper Philipp Marceta (#1) made his debut for Madison this season, earning his first shutout of the season in the last outing against Greenville. After an extensive career in Austria and Germany, Marceta joined the club after trialing with the Seattle Sounders during the MLS preseason.

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Conversations at the Monument this Saturday

The end goal is to record and allow for these conversations to create a framework for change and policy making at the state and local level.

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Councilperson Stephanie Lynch is hosting a set of five conversation stations at Marcus David Peters Circle. A chance to listen and be heard.

Location: Lee Monument, 1700 Monument Ave
Date: Saturday, August 8th
Time: 2PM – 4PM

This city has been through a lot in the last several weeks and we have heard repeatedly from both organizers and every day residents that they would like more opportunities to have their voices heard. The movement for justice and equity is a fervent one and there has never been a more pertinent opportunity to bring people together and move into the action phase with real policies and solutions. The purpose of this event is to bring various groups together to listen to one another and have facilitated conversation with legislators, local elected officials and city leaders so that we can hear directly from the people we serve and represent. This event will happen rain or shine and will start promptly at 2pm-4pm.

There will be 5 facilitated “conversation stations” for residents to record their concerns, recommendations and policy ideas. Each station will be moderated by a designated facilitator around different institutions in our system that impact black lives (Education, Criminal Justice & Public Safety, Housing, Health and mental health care, and Economic Development). The end goal is to record and allow for these conversations to create a framework for change and policy making at the state and local level as legislators prepare for the August 18th General Assembly Special Session and on the city level, the resuming of the regular City Council calendar year.

Bring a mask, dress for the weather. All are welcome and no voice will be left out.

Confirmed Guests Thus Far Include:

Senator Jennifer McClellan
Senator Ghazala Hashmi
Delegate Betsy Carr
Delegate Dawn Adams
Delegate Schyler Vanvalkenburg
Councilmember Mike Jones
Councilmember Stephanie Lynch
Councilmember Andreas Addison
School Board Member Patrick Sapini
Chief Gerald Smith
Sherriff Antoinette Irving
Representation from the Office of the Mayor
Representation from the Office of the Superintendent

In service and solidarity,

Stephanie Lynch
City Council, 5th District

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Richmond BizSense.com Reporting Naked Onion Permanently Closed

The take-out sandwich spot has been closed since the start of the pandemic.

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Richmond BizSense.com has the news of another restaurant feeling the sting of Covid-19.

“We have decided to permanently close. With COVID, and giving birth to our second child in May, we just don’t feel comfortable with the daily risk, nor do we feel it responsible to put our staff at risk,” the Comstocks said in a message to BizSense via Facebook.

The Comstocks said they’re not sure what their next move might be. Both are chefs who had prior experience in the culinary scenes in Las Vegas and Richmond before opening The Naked Onion.

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