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The Butchmeister: I’m a Strat-O-Matic Baseball nerd
The Butchmeister: I’m a Strat-O-Matic Baseball nerd

I’m a nerd.

No, I’m not one of those that would suffer humiliation through high school (well, maybe a little) only to later form a multi-million-dollar Internet startup.

Third annual Kanawha Farm Bureau horse show coming in October
Third annual Kanawha Farm Bureau horse show coming in October

The third annual Kanawha County Farm Bureau Fall Festival Horse Show will be held Friday and Saturday, Oct. 17 and 18, at Camp Virgil Tate in Cross Lanes.

Support sought for Sissonville Heritage Festival
Support sought for Sissonville Heritage Festival

A present-day effort to honor Sissonville’s past is hoped to become a future staple in the community.

Kanawha City exercise franchise introduces ‘Brickhouse Meals to Go’

The Charleston-based Brickhouse Cardio Club fitness studio franchise announced it has developed and will launch its own line of healthy, chef-prepared meals, called “Brickhouse Meals To Go,” at pilot locations across the country,...

Editor’s Desk: Time to huddle up with high school football
Editor’s Desk: Time to huddle up with high school football

Fall is almost a month away, according to the calendar, but one of the sure signs that summer days are waning is the start of high school football season, which kicked off last weekend.

Kanawha City exercise franchise introduces ‘Brickhouse Meals to Go’

The Charleston-based Brickhouse Cardio Club fitness studio franchise announced it has developed and will launch its own line of healthy, chef-prepared meals, called “Brickhouse Meals To Go,” at pilot locations across the country,...

Hunter safety course coming to Belle

A free hunter safety course will take place at Belle Town Hall from 9 a.m. to 2 p.m. Saturday, Sept. 13 and 2 to 7 p.m. Sunday, Sept. 14.

Charity golf tournament scheduled at Big Bend Saturday

Applications are being accepted for the annual St. Paul Community and Economic Development Corporation Charity Golf Tournament.

‘Cabaret’ to benefit Covenant House, Gay Men’s Chorale
‘Cabaret’ to benefit Covenant House, Gay Men’s Chorale

“Life is a Cabaret,” an evening of music and fundraising put on by the Charleston Gay Men’s Chorale, will be held at 5:30 p.m. Friday, Sept. 19, in the Great Hall of the West Virginia Culture Center in Charleston.

BridgeValley CTC to offer certified personal trainer instruction

BridgeValley Community and Technical College has an upcoming class to train people to become a nationally certified personal fitness trainer.

Mound Festival Arts & Crafts show slated in South Charleston

Rain or shine, the 36th version of the Mound Festival Arts & Crafts Show gets underway on Saturday, Sept. 13, at the Mound in South Charleston.

Vintage wine cellar prints available as fundraiser from Dunbar Historical Commission
Vintage wine cellar prints available as fundraiser from Dunbar Historical Commission

Prints of an original painting of the wine cellars in Dunbar’s Wine Cellar Park are being sold as a fundraiser by the Dunbar Historical Preservation Commission.

Taking a bite out of crime
Taking a bite out of crime

With an extra spring in his step, Rich White took off running across a field near Valley Park in Hurricane. In hot pursuit was Bella, a heat-seeking missile of a police dog intent on catching him.

City of Nitro’s ‘Central Bark’ dog park now open at Ridenour Lake
City of Nitro’s ‘Central Bark’ dog park now open at Ridenour Lake

New York City has its famous Central Park, but now Nitro has its “Central Bark,” a playground designed especially for dogs.

Foster care program NECCO sponsoring first-time golf scramble
Foster care program NECCO sponsoring first-time golf scramble

Area therapeutic foster care company NECCO will host its first golf scramble on Saturday, Sept. 13, at Little Creek Golf Course in Charleston.

The Butchmeister: Marshall looks at new-look Conference USA for rivals

When the Marshall University football team takes the field this season, they will be competing in a conference nowhere near the one they joined in 2005.

Tuscan Tomato Bean Soup
Tuscan Tomato Bean Soup

Four years ago, I purchased a packet of Italian tomato seeds at an Italian grocery store in Steubenville, Ohio. I’d forgotten about them until this year.

Capital City Vapors opens in Kanawha City
Capital City Vapors opens in Kanawha City

“Vaping” is a new and increasingly common part of the American lexicon, derived from the growing popularity of “e-cigarettes,” the modern counterpart to tobacco products.

South Charleston Interpretive Center honors late donor of Indian artifacts
South Charleston Interpretive Center honors late donor of Indian artifacts

As an enthusiastic amateur archaeologist, Carl H. Wills never left home without a desire to discover something from the past.

Kanawha State Forest hosts first enduro bike race
Kanawha State Forest hosts first enduro bike race

It is said that what goes up, must come down.

When it comes to the enduro, a kind of a mix of downhill and cross country mountain bicycle racing that is becoming more popular in the United States, truer words were never spoken.

On Aug. 9,...

Fennel Vichyssoise
Fennel Vichyssoise

I like to introduce farmers market customers to “new” items. I recently harvested several bulbs of fennel, which seemed to interest a lot of people. However, I couldn’t convince a single person to buy a bulb. It is one of those...

Vickers competes in first national lifting event
Vickers competes in first national lifting event

Austen Vickers picked up weightlifting while playing football at South Charleston High School.

He loved it so much that he bulked up from a wide receiver to a larger, more imposing, 220-pound offensive tackle and defensive end, helping lead the...

Albans Arts Center to present ‘Legend of Sleeping Beauty’

The Alban Arts Center will present the family-friendly story of “The Legend of Sleeping Beauty,” a musical adapted from the story of “Briar Rose” by the Brothers Grimm.

The musical will be staged at 8 p.m. Fridays...

South Charleston Lions sponsoring ‘Kiss a Pig’ fundraiser
South Charleston Lions sponsoring ‘Kiss a Pig’ fundraiser

If you can’t find the love to pucker up for a porker yourself, you can still see it for yourself from a trio of local men willing to take a chance.

The South Charleston Lions Club will host a Kiss a Pig contest to raise funds for eye...

Editor’s Desk: Images from abroad

Got a call from a well-known Putnam County personality the other day.

Bill Ellis of Scott Depot rang to say how much he enjoyed the Readers’ Gallery in Metro Putnam (it also runs in our Kanawha Valley Neighbors sections). Each week, the...

Elk River Back Pack Blessings provides weekend nourishment to youths
Elk River Back Pack Blessings provides weekend nourishment to youths

Elk River Back Pack Blessings is an ongoing operation of donations, volunteer support and community outreach.

Weekly, volunteers assemble at Clendenin United Methodist Church on Koontz Avenue in Clendenin to fill back packs with food items for...

S.C. Chamber hosting interactive murder mystery theater

The South Charleston Chamber of Commerce will host “Another Fistful of Bullets,” an interactive murder mystery dinner theater, at 7 p.m. Friday, Aug. 22 and Saturday, Aug. 23, at the Comedy Zone Charleston, located in the Holiday Inn...

Summerfest returns to S.C. this week

Kicking off at 6 p.m. sharp on Wednesday, Aug. 13, the South Charleston Summerfest returns to the Mound on D Street, offering four, fun-filled days and evenings of free, family-style entertainment.

The music lineup, rife with fondly remembered...

Monsanto lawsuit settlement finalized

Thomas V. Flaherty, of the Nitro Class Action Settlement Administrators, LLC, the court-appointed administrator of the Monsanto Nitro Class Action, opened an office in Nitro on July 8.

The settlement will provide benefits for people who owned...

St. Albans Riverfest National Kiddie Tractor Pull winners announced

At the recent St. Albans Riverfest, 66 children ages 3 to 10 participated in the Kiddie Tractor Pull, sponsored by David Smith Frame and Body Shop.

To win, the children rode a tractor pulling a weighted sled down a 30-foot lane. In most groups,...

St. Albans, Nitro fire departments go online with mobile data terminal technology
St. Albans, Nitro fire departments go online with mobile data terminal technology

The St. Albans Fire Department and Nitro Fire Department are using computer tablet technology to enhance their responses to fires and other emergencies.

The two departments’ fire trucks and emergency vehicles are now equipped with...

Active Medical LLC in Hurricane provides mobility solutions, expert care
Active Medical LLC in Hurricane provides mobility solutions, expert care

Helping people stay mobile and independent in spite of medical conditions is just one of the new Active Medical LLC’s specialties.

The locally owned home medical equipment company opened earlier this year at 3475 Teays Valley Road,...

Teen writes political thriller with faith-based message
Teen writes political thriller with faith-based message

Not many teenagers are writing books at age 14, especially not political fiction.

Joshua Higginbotham, though, has written has three such novels, the first one when he was 14. Having just turned 18, Higginbotham’s latest book,...

Marie’s Kanawha River Cafe serves maritime meals in Chesapeake
Marie’s Kanawha River Cafe serves maritime meals in Chesapeake

It may be something of a geographical oddity, but there’s a restaurant in Chesapeake that’s been compared to culinary counterparts in Philadelphia and Little Italy in New York City.

Moreover, the eatery extends roughly 100 feet or...

Cucumber Kimchee
Cucumber Kimchee

This is the time of year when we have too much produce. When I stumbled upon a recipe for Cucumber Kimchee, I was ecstatic, because I could use up some of the cucumbers I’d harvested in a new and different manner.

Kimchee is a spicy,...

Pinch Reunion on tap this weekend
Pinch Reunion on tap this weekend

Continuing a tradition that extends beyond a century now and bears national distinction, the annual Pinch Reunion will take place this weekend in the Elk Valley town.

Festivities begin on Friday, Aug. 8, with the annual Pinch Reunion...

Ribfest sizzles into Shawnee Park this month
Ribfest sizzles into Shawnee Park this month

Several seasoned, world-class chefs will be doing far, far more than just blowing smoke in and around Dunbar in a few days.

That impending, smoky, sizzling haze over Shawnee Park, located between Institute and Dunbar on W.Va. 25, will be a...

‘Affordable Meals’ program launches Monday in Dawes
‘Affordable Meals’ program launches Monday in Dawes

For many -- if not most -- families nowadays, preparing healthful meals can be a challenge on a tight budget and a frequently frenzied everyday household schedule.

Help is on its way to harried parents and singles next week, in that regard. The...

Summer Squash makes tasty dish from garden favorites
Summer Squash makes tasty dish from garden favorites

The ripe fruits and vegetables in our garden often inspire our summer meals. There is no need to go to the grocery store when every thing needed for a healthy meal is right outside the back door.

Some crops are always more prolific than others,...

ARC co-founder joins Mountaineer Montessori School faculty
ARC co-founder joins Mountaineer Montessori School faculty

Jennifer Carriger, the co-founder of the Appalachian Reading Center, has been named the full-time reading and learning consultant at Mountaineer Montessori School, 308 20th St., Charleston.

Carriger received bachelor’s degrees in...

Summerfest 2014 kicks off Aug. 13 with live music, food, dancing

When the conversation turns to the annual South Charleston Summerfest, “free” is the key word.

This year’s Summerfest, which kicks off at 6 p.m. Wednesday, Aug. 13, at the Mound on D Street, is the 15th version of the summer...

St. Albans 9-10-year-old girls win state title
St. Albans 9-10-year-old girls win state title

St. Albans has had a pretty strong history when it comes to softball over the past few years.

In 2006, the St. Albans 11-12 Little League team won a state title.

Four years later, the high school team, which has had only one losing season...

Anytime Fitness sponsoring 5K run/walk

Anytime Fitness will sponsor a 5K run/walk to help an area couple with medical treatment costs for their 1-month-old daughter.

The 5K event will start at 8 a.m. Saturday, Aug. 9 at the University of Charleston.

The entry fee is $25 per...

Annual state Church of God camp meeting Sunday
Annual state Church of God camp meeting Sunday

With its proclaimed theme of “Identity,” the annual West Virginia State Camp Meeting of the Church of God will get underway at 7 p.m. Sunday, Aug. 3, and continue through Friday, Aug. 8.

The camp meeting will be held at the...

EKG/ECG training course offered at BridgeValley CTC

BridgeValley Community and Technical College will offer an EKG/ECG Technician Certification Training course that will prepare students to function as EKG technicians and to take the American Society of Phlebotomy Technician’s Electrocardiograph...

Annual 25177 Foundation golf outing Aug. 9 at Big Bend

The 11th Annual 25177 Foundation Golf Outing will be held on Saturday, Aug. 9 at Big Bend Golf Course in Tornado.

This two-person scramble golf outing will begin with a shotgun start at 8:30 a.m. The cost is $75 per golfer or $150 for a...

Free hoops camp a success
Free hoops camp a success

Four years ago, Cierra Jones and Kenneth Booth had a vision, to start up a free basketball camp for children from low-income families and others who could not afford one of pay camps in the region.

In 2011, they formed CJKB Infinity Sports, a...

Season’s right for Blueberry Peach Upside Down Cake
Season’s right for Blueberry Peach Upside Down Cake

The third most important fruit crop in the United States is the peach crop. (The first is apple. The second is orange.)

Peaches are an important agricultural crop in the Mountain State. The state is ranked 14th in U.S. production. Most are...

Grumpy’s Waterfront Grille provides riverside dining on MacCorkle Avenue
Grumpy’s Waterfront Grille provides riverside dining on MacCorkle Avenue

There’s a spacious, revamped dining room inside Grumpy’s Waterfront Grille, but during nice weather, customers flock to the large deck overlooking the Kanawha River.

The deck is one of the big draws at the eatery, which is at 5930...

United Way seeks community volunteers for Day of Caring

United Way of Central West Virginia is signing up volunteers for its Wednesday, Sept. 17, Day of Caring.

Day of Caring is a call for people from the community and businesses to come together to create positive change in the lives of children,...

Main Street Art Studio welcomes August guest artist
Main Street Art Studio welcomes August guest artist

In August, artist Susan Tschantz’s work will be exhibited as part of Main Street Art Studio’s Art Moves in Hurricane. To kick off the exhibit, the public is invited to a reception from 6 to 8 p.m. Saturday, July 26. It will be an evening...

Extension Service offering canning & preserving workshops
Extension Service offering canning & preserving workshops

Keeping pace with a renewed interest in eating locally and growing vegetables in home gardens, the West Virginia University Kanawha County Extension Service office is offering workshops on canning and preserving homegrown, or locally purchased produce...

South Charleston man turns love of cooking into his own line of barbecue sauce
South Charleston man turns love of cooking into his own line of barbecue sauce

Meet the “Lem” in Lem’s Meat Varnish.

He’s Chris Lemon of South Charleston, who developed a new barbecue sauce about three years ago after experimenting with different recipes in his kitchen.

Lemon’s...

SCHS students ‘reaching for space,’ Rotarians learn
SCHS students ‘reaching for space,’ Rotarians learn

NASA’s CubeSat Launch Initiative provides opportunities for auxiliary payloads to fly on rockets in upcoming launches.

“It’s a way for NASA to develop the next generation of scientists and engineers,” Joe Oliver told...

W.Va. School of Gospel Music accepting enrollment applications

304-348-1232

The 18th annual West Virginia School of Gospel Music is scheduled to take place Monday, July 28 through Friday, Aug. 1 at Fisher Memorial Church, in Goldtown, Jackson County, north of Sissonville and the Kanawha and Putnam county...

South Charleston native develops Vixen Vodka, now available in West Virginia
South Charleston native develops Vixen Vodka, now available in West Virginia

A South Charleston native has founded one of the few female-owned spirits companies in the country, and the brand, Vixen Vodka, is now available in the Mountain State.

LeeAnn Maxwell, 54, chief executive officer of Vixen Vodka, based in...

Summer a good time to tune up with yoga
Summer a good time to tune up with yoga

“I really hate the way yoga keeps my body youthful and fit,” said absolutely no one EVER.

And why would they? Everywhere you look, there are new products being sold claiming to burn fat, remove the muffin top and magically grow...

Fregola Salad with Broccoli and Onions
Fregola Salad with Broccoli and Onions

On a recent trip to Philadelphia, I purchased a bag of fregola (also fregula). It is commonly referred to as a type of pasta, although there are those who disagree. Pasta is generally made of flour and a liquid, while fregola is made of coarse...

Hernshaw teenager fighting Lyme disease for past five years
Hernshaw teenager fighting Lyme disease for past five years

While mowing his family’s yard at his Hernshaw home in July 2009, Caleb Norman was bitten on the ankle by a deer tick. A bulls-eye rash surfaced on his ankle a few hours later, and he began experiencing flu-like symptoms.

Five years...

Red, White and Bike
Red, White and Bike

What says summertime more for a child than riding their bicycles around the neighborhood or celebrating the Fourth of July by watching fireworks and enjoying other related activities?

The St. Albans Riverfest, celebrating their 20th...

Pink taxi nears retirement from C&H fleet
Pink taxi nears retirement from C&H fleet

A distinctively pink taxi is being put out to pasture, so to speak, on Charleston’s East End.

C&H Taxi, which owns and operates the vibrant pink cab, is preparing to retire the vehicle from regular shifts in coming days, after a...

CrossFit Never Give Up features varied workouts in supportive atmosphere
CrossFit Never Give Up features varied workouts in supportive atmosphere

During a morning workout session at the new CrossFit Never Give Up fitness facility in South Charleston, cheers of encouragement rang out as a woman hoisted a barbell and weights over her head.

It’s the kind of camaraderie and support...

Area Upward Bound youth attend Teen Summit Against Drugs at WVSU
Area Upward Bound youth attend Teen Summit Against Drugs at WVSU

The dangers of drug abuse among teenagers were brought into sharp focus during the first Teen Summit Against Drugs at West Virginia State University.

The event on Wednesday, July 2, in the Wilson Student Union was sponsored by the WVSU Upward...

Celebrate the Fourth with a blueberry cherry pie
Celebrate the Fourth with a blueberry cherry pie

The sour cherry season is finished in this area, and the yield was not big this year due to late frosts that killed the blossoms. Blueberries are just beginning to ripen. They, too, were affected by the early spring cold spell, but they are now...

Fourth annual FAN Night tabbed for July 11 at Power Park
Fourth annual FAN Night tabbed for July 11 at Power Park

The JeffersonWhitney Foundation, a Hurricane-based, nonprofit organization that advocates for the special needs community, is presenting its fourth annual FAN Night at Appalachian Power Park in Charleston on Friday, July 11.

FAN, similar to...

CAMC to offer tour, sibling ‘prep’ class Thursday
CAMC to offer tour, sibling ‘prep’ class Thursday

If you’re expecting a new family member in the near future, the staff at CAMC Women and Children’s Hospital can offer some preliminary preparation (and reassurance) for the new arrival.

On Thursday, July 3, the CAMC Women and...

Soccer’s popularity growing in the Kanawha Valley
Soccer’s popularity growing in the Kanawha Valley

As soccer continues to grow in the United States, it does so in West Virginia and the Kanawha Valley, as well.

More than 18 million watched the U.S. against Portugal in the World Cup on ESPN on June 22, setting a record as the most-viewed soccer...

West Virginia State University students earn top honors for graphic narratives

A trio of West Virginia State University students swept top honors in the graphic narrative category in the annual writing competition sponsored by West Virginia Writers Inc.

Scotty White, Frank Larnerd and Katarina Dedicova finished first,...

Bows and arrows, Mongolian-style
Bows and arrows, Mongolian-style

Archery is a sport that appeals to many, but when Michael Kane and Keith Mosteller get out their bows and arrows, they use equipment of a style dating to ancient Asia.

The two friends use Mongolian-style bows from the period of Ghenghis Khan.

Southridge Church volunteers return from mission trip to Nicaragua
Southridge Church volunteers return from mission trip to Nicaragua

A recent trip to the Central American country of Nicaragua was a bonding experience for 11 members of Southridge Church in South Charleston.

Southridge Church Lead Pastor Marc Sundstrom led the group of volunteers; they departed June 5 and...

Nitro teacher leaves legacy in hearts and minds of students
Nitro teacher leaves legacy in hearts and minds of students

The stands at the Nitro football field were filled with hundreds of people, but there was no cheering.

On Monday evening, June 30, students, teachers and other members of the Nitro community gathered for a memorial and candlelight vigil...

4-H Horse Camp teaches riding disciplines, horse care
4-H Horse Camp teaches riding disciplines, horse care

From beginners to seasoned riders, the Southern District 4-H Horse Camp at Camp Virgil Tate teaches the young participants everything from how to ride a horse to the proper care and feeding of one.

The annual camp, which ran the week of June 15,...

Secret Santa Foundation to host benefit golf tournament Aug. 4

The first week of August may seem a bit early to start thinking about Christmas, but not for the Secret Santa Foundation.

To help hundreds of local children in December, the foundation will host a fundraising golf tournament on Monday, Aug. 4,...

Ms. Groovy’s moving on up with catered cuisine
Ms. Groovy’s moving on up with catered cuisine

After nearly three years in business on Charleston’s West Side, Ms. Groovy’s Cafe and Catering keeps on trucking -- all over the Mountain State.

Proprietor Jeni Pettigrew Burns is focusing more on the catering aspect of her...

Former WVU standout stars for USA in the World Cup
Former WVU standout stars for USA in the World Cup

Once every four years, the global sport of football, or soccer as its known here in the United States, takes center stage for the planet’s most watched sporting event.

For many Americans it’s the only time the sport is given any...

Bacon Ranch Pea Salad
Bacon Ranch Pea Salad

I cannot begin to count the number of times my mother would tell me to “eat your peas,” when I was a child. She implied they were good for me.

The peas my mother served were usually straight from the can. They didn’t taste...

Elkview-based martial artists triumph at Parkersburg tourney
Elkview-based martial artists triumph at Parkersburg tourney

Members of the Dueling Dragon Martial Arts Academy in Elkview attended the Battle of Champions Karate and Jujitsu Tournament in Parkersburg on June 14, returning with an impressive array of trophies for their skills.

Students Jake Nichols and...

Rock Lake Arts Camp in July to feature arts, crafts, drama and dance
Rock Lake Arts Camp in July to feature arts, crafts, drama and dance

Drama, dance, singing, arts and crafts -- it’s all free at the Rock Lake Arts Camp in South Charleston.

The fourth annual Rock Lake Arts Camp is gearing up for its July 28 start, but organizers are getting a jump on the event by...

St. Albans Riverfest kicks off Thursday, June 26 at Roadside Park
St. Albans Riverfest kicks off Thursday, June 26 at Roadside Park

The bridge is back, and so is the St. Albans Riverfest.

The 20th version of the annual event kicks off at 6 p.m. Thursday, June 26, at Roadside Park, and continues through Sunday, June 29.

The four-day, family-friendly festival features a...

Richmond Elementary School principal wins statewide recognition
Richmond Elementary School principal wins statewide recognition

Richmond Elementary School Principal Terry Sauvageot doesn’t like being in the spotlight, preferring instead to shower attention on her students and staff.

But at the end of the school year, the veteran educator happily accepted a...