Day: July 30, 2017

Arts & Entertainment, High Notes

The Suburbs: Hey Muse!

By Chris Anderson   The Suburbs: Hey Muse!   I’ve said it before, just what it is that I love the most about music – no matter how much I think I know, no matter how much I have heard, no matter how many records I own or how many articles I’ve read, what I know barely scratches the surface of what is out there. And quite often artists who I damn well should be aware of still manage to slip by my radar, simply because there is so much music to be heard and I simply had yet to come across them. Such is the case with The Suburbs. I recently came across their latest release, Hey Muse!, totally by chance, and gave it a listen. I figured that they were a new band, some quirky indie pop outfit that had really studied up on the 80s, and happened to pull it off better than just about anyone. I was immediately blown away by just how convincing they were, impressed to see a modern band that had gotten it so right. I had no idea.   Further research hipped me to the fact that no, in fact they are not a new band, not by any stretch, but rather a legendary new-wave band from Minneapolis that formed in the late 1970’s, one that was known for bridging the gap between the funk of Prince and the punk of Hüsker Dü. Somehow the legend totally dodged my consciousness over the years but it turns out that they put out four excellent albums in the 80’s and, after reuniting more recently, this is their second of this decade. My initial pleasure in thinking they were a contemporary band that got it right quickly gave way to a whole new sense of…

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Exploring VA Wines, Wining & Dining

Kids or No Kids – That is the Question!

by Nancy Bauer, Virginia Wine in My Pocket Kids or No Kids – That is the Question!   Some wineries love kids, some tolerate them, and some say nope, not happening, “don’t even think about it!” We’ve rounded up a few of each to help you pick the right winery for your day away in Virginia Wine Country. ADULTS-ONLY WINERIES All adults, all the time at these peaceful Northern Virginia wineries. (No one under 21 permitted.) Chateau O’Brien, Markham Delaplane Cellars, Delaplane RdV Vineyards, Delaplane “NO-GO ZONE” WINERIES Each of these Northern Virginia wineries offers designated “family-friendly” or “adults-only” areas. Breaux Vineyards, Purcellville – Children are welcome everywhere, except for the upper patio, which offers adults-only seating for 50. Cana Vineyards, Middleburg – Kids are welcome in the first floor tasting room, porch, patio, and grounds. (A separate area is designated “adults only.”) Chrysalis Vineyards, Middleburg – Age 21 and over only on the second floor and deck areas. Fabbioli Cellars, Leesburg – Kids allowed in the barrel room and second level. No one under 21 permitted on the third level and on the sail patio. Paradise Springs, Clifton – The winery’s back patio deck is reserved for adults only. Stone Tower Winery, Leesburg – The Harvest Barn tasting room is family and pet friendly. The Tower View Tasting Room next door is limited to those 21 and over. The Winery at Bull Run, Centerville – Kids welcome in the tasting room and the two-acre back yard and adjacent patio. The one-acre front yard and patio are strictly 21 and over. “KIDS WELCOME” WINERIES Little ones find a warm welcome at these Northern Virginia and Central Virginia wineries. Northern Virginia 612 Vineyard, Berryville – Kids here get a playground and play area of their very own. Aspen Dale Winery, Delaplane…

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Featured Post, Go Fish, Pets, Places, & Things

Fishing Adds Up For St. Jude Children’s Hospital

By Steve Chaconas Fishing Adds Up For St. Jude Children’s Hospital Sports are measured in numbers. Games are determined by inches. Clocks run out. Close only counts in horseshoes and hand grenades. Americans are always keeping score. On 7-7-17, 127 anglers took to the waters of the Potomac and by the end of the fishing day; they raised $6,820 for the kids of St. Jude Children’s Hospital. This might not seem to be a lot, but there were more than 2 times the participants this year. This was the 22nd tournament. Going back 20 years, Viacom DC radio General Manager Charlie Ochs listened to one of his managers make a pitch for the country music radio giant WMZQ to enhance their fundraising efforts for St. Jude Children’s Hospital. The program Director and Sales Manager at the time were solidly opposed to a bass fishing tournament. They didn’t like the image fishing presented, at least in their minds. They felt the bass fishing demographic didn’t suit their demographics. Charlie heard them out and then took off his glasses and became Sargent Ochs. His eyes lit up and he asked if they knew anything about bass fishing. Charlie wasn’t a bass fisherman, but knew they bought boats, trucks, and tackle and made every Middle America purchase. He also knew they had families and made donations to worthy causes like St. Jude. Consensus was reached and here we are more than 20 years later. Amazingly, there are a few guys who fished the original event who continue to show up and bring others to the tournament. This event is like no other competition. Oh sure, there are a few gunslingers seeking prize money, but there are others like the Pyles brothers who in 2016 donated their winnings right back to St. Jude. This gathering…

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Beauty & Health, Fitness

9 Things to Know About Fitness Technology Tools

By Cher Murphy  9 Things to Know About Fitness Technology Tools Those looking to get and stay fit may need look no further than their smartphone, desktop computer, or wrist. The many apps, wearables, and online fitness programs that are available today are helping to motivate people to get off the couch and start getting physical. In the January 2017 issue of the journal Frontiers in Public Health, researchers report that fitness technology, which includes apps and trackers, has become increasingly popular and that it has the potential to significantly impact public health, research, and policies. However, most people don’t know much about them. The more they know about the fitness technology tools, the better they will be able to choose one that will fit their lifestyle and goals. “The right fitness tool has the potential to be a virtual coach right at your fingertips,” explains Coach Sarah Walls, personal trainer and owner of SAPT Strength & Performance Training, Inc., who is also the strength and conditioning coach for the WNBA’s Washington Mystics. “An effective app, wearable or online program will give the ability to tailor your program to suit your needs, provide you with a variety of ways to meet your goals, and help you accurately track your progress.” Coach Walls, who developed her own fitness app that allows her to provide clients with customized training plans, videos, and more, offers these 9 things to know about fitness apps/tools: Apps have come a long way, now allowing individuals to get specific and customized training plans within minutes. Individualized training plans are essential in maximizing progress and limiting injuries. Programs such as hers allow for an individually tailored training plan at a fraction of the cost of a personal trainer. Some training plan generators even take into account injury history…

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Financial Focus, Pets, Places, & Things

To Be Active or Passive, That Is the Question

By Carl Trevison and Stephen Bearce   To Be Active or Passive, That Is the Question   Active investing or passive investing. It’s an ongoing debate, and here, briefly, is what’s behind it.   Active investing involves the skills of an investment manager who seeks to generate greater returns than a market benchmark or index and may pursue other goals, such as risk reduction and income enhancement.   A passive manager’s investment strategy, on the other hand, is designed to track the performance of an index, an asset class, or market segment (benchmark) and achieve returns that closely correspond to the returns of that benchmark with low fees. The goal of this type of investing might be, for example, to track the performance of the S&P 500 Index, which means owning a basket of stocks that mirror the composition of the index. Once the basket’s contents are determined, the manager generally steps back and lets market forces do what they will.   With this type of investing, the manager will not sell securities to take advantage of changing market conditions and may have less flexibility to react to price declines in the securities but will continue to hold the same securities as the benchmark it is designed to track.   Active investing includes substantial research and, possibly, a fair amount of trading, and the manager generally passes these expenses on to the investor. On the other hand, expenses for a passively managed fund, such as an exchange-traded fund (ETF), are usually low, making it comparatively inexpensive for investors to own. It is important to note that although these funds trade relatively infrequently, keeping administrative expenses relatively low, means the fund’s performance probably will not match the benchmark’s performance exactly.   This is the crux of the debate: Is active investing…

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Exploring VA Wines, Wining & Dining

Dog Days

By Doug Fabbioli   Dog Days Is it me or are things moving faster than ever before? It seems like a few weeks after school is out for the summer, the “Back to School” promotions start at the stores and on the TV. As we are growing our vines through the year, I feel like we quickly move from one season to another without ever catching up. Farming berries, hops, pears and grapes at 6 locations keeps us busy throughout the year, with the heavy push being when things are warm and wet. I think warm and wet is the best way to describe this season. We have had some pockets of dryness, but the majority of the summer has had its rainstorms come through to keep the grass green and the plants growing quite well. The challenge with the excess moisture in the vineyard this time of year is multifaceted. The vines will not grow more grapes when things are wet, but they will grow more leaves. The extra leaves will bring more energy into the plant but will also add to the shading of other leaves. All of the leaves are susceptible to diseases such as Downy Mildew when they do not get a chance to dry. Also the weeds and grass are growing like crazy, holding moisture and slowing down the air movement that would allow the vines to dry. So, what do we do to keep this situation managed in a way that we can still get top quality fruit for our vintage? First, we are mowing, controlling the weeds, pulling leaves off the vines and hedging to keep the air flowing and the sunshine reaching the inner part of the canopy. Also we use an irradicant organic spray that will rinse off the spores of…

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On the Road, Pets, Places, & Things

On the Road!

Jeff Leukel picked up a copy of the OTC while attending a conference at the Gaylord Resort in National Harbor. He decided to take it back to sunny Sanford, Florida and catch up with the latest from the comfort of his chair in the Office Of The Public Defender. We had the pleasure of meeting Jeff during his stay and look forward to the next time he is in the area.