Practicing

Practicing

(Tom Robotham -- on the left -- has been perfecting his French with Duolingo so he can better converse in the future with local Parisians like this street vendor selling books and art along the River Seine) By Tom Robotham  J’apprends Français. Well, a little bit each...

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Marine Corps Veteran Recalls V-J Day

Marine Corps Veteran Recalls V-J Day

(NOW & THEN: 95-year-old Gary Crane with his 1943 Marine Corps portrait)  By Jeff Maisey September 2 of this year commemorated the 75th Anniversary of V-J Day — Victory over Japan — marking the end to the Pacific theater of war and effectively bringing the horrors...

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Producing A Christmas Carol in COVID Times

Producing A Christmas Carol in COVID Times

(The Virginia Stage Company set begins to take shape.) By Jeff Maisey Sorry, Mr. Scrooge, but humbuggery won’t entirely dampen Christmas this year if the Virginia Stage Company has a say in the matter. And it seems they do. From December 16-24, the professional...

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Big Ugly Brewing Wins Golden Tap Award

Big Ugly Brewing Wins Golden Tap Award

(Big Ugly Brewing stacked up well against the competition in 2020) By Jeff Maisey Chesapeake’s Big Ugly Brewing edged-out two-time defending champion Benchtop Brewing Company to take home Veer Magazine’s 2020 Golden Tap Award. Breweries from across the 757 region were...

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ARTfull Pops Up for the Holidays

ARTfull Pops Up for the Holidays

(Gail Juren returns to the Ghent retail scene with ARTfull exclusively for the holiday season.) By Jeff Maisey One of the unexpected gifts of the 2020 holiday season is the return of retailer Gail Juren.  In late October, Juren popped-up with ARTfull in a familiar...

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BONKO: And This Just In….

BONKO: And This Just In….

(WEATHER REPORT: Meteorologist Steve Fundaro joins WAVY 10. Photo courtesy of WAVY 10) By Larry Bonko   Hello, Steve Fundaro. Welcome to our world of tolls and tunnels.   And hello to you, too, Alex Littlehales and to you, too, Eugene Daniel.   They are the three...

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Now What?

Now What?

BY TOM ROBOTHAM On the morning of Nov. 7, I was watching CNN, fervently hoping that they would finally call the election in Joe Biden’s favor. When they did, at 11:26 a.m., I let out a whoop that was likely heard throughout West Ghent. Van Jones—a CNN commentator whom...

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Mural Artist of the Year: Clayton Singleton

Mural Artist of the Year: Clayton Singleton

(MURAL, MURAL ON THE WALL: Artist Clayton Singleton stands with the Black Lives More Than Matter mural he collaborated on with Nicole Harp. Photo by Jeff Maisey) By Betsy DiJulio Since the pandemic began in earnest, evenings and weekends have found Clayton Singleton,...

Best Local Music of 2020

Best Local Music of 2020

(Bennett Wales & The Relief's dynamic sophomore album, "II."  By Jeff Maisey Way back in 1980 — 40 years ago — MTV debuted with The Buggles’ “Video Killed The Radio Star,” and thus entered a new threat to a medium in which recording artists made a career for...

SURREAL: Pfac Goes Out on Top

SURREAL: Pfac Goes Out on Top

(Peninsula Fine Arts Center Executive Director Courtney Gardner)  By Jeff Maisey When the Peninsula Fine Arts Center (Pfac) presents Masters of Surrealism: Picasso, Dalí and Miró November 21 through December 20 it astonishingly marks the visual arts center’s...

MUSIC REVIEWS: Sinnett, Lucky 757 & More

MUSIC REVIEWS: Sinnett, Lucky 757 & More

Jae Sinnett & Brittany Burrell “All the Lights We See” (Single) (J-Nette Music) How do you cap off a year when your “Just When You Thought…” album continues to reel-in great reviews and remains high on jazz recording charts?  When you’re Jae Sinnett, you drop an...

MUSIC REVIEWS: Lori Creek, Koren Grace, Myra Smith & More

MUSIC REVIEWS: Lori Creek, Koren Grace, Myra Smith & More

Myra Smith “Walking on the Moon” (Single) (Self-Release) With life during the pandemic heavy on her mind, R&B vocalist Myra Smith put her frustrations and depression into the best creative outlet available — her music — and release the cosmic “Walking on the...

Come Together at The Chrysler

Come Together at The Chrysler

(Marilyn Nance (American, b. 1953), Three Placards (Elijah Muhammad, Martin Luther King, Jr. and Malcolm X), June 14, 1986, Gelatin silver print, Gift of Joyce F. and Robert B. Menschel, © Marilyn Nance) By Betsy DiJulio “We are there for our community,” asserts Lloyd...

MUSIC: Jason Cale, Jackie & Resa, Jones Brothers & Peppos

MUSIC: Jason Cale, Jackie & Resa, Jones Brothers & Peppos

The Jason Cale Band “World of Wonder” (Self-Release) Look out — The Jason Cale Band is about to set the blues-fusion world on fire when this 9-song album -- "World of Wonder" -- is released on all platforms September 8. The opening “Made a Fool of My Heart” makes a...

Downtown Norfolk Restaurant Week Begins

Downtown Norfolk Restaurant Week Begins

(Brick Anchor Brew-House offers a variety of pub fare and healthy options) By Jeff Maisey From January 17-24, Downtown Norfolk will be presenting its winter Restaurant Week. This year, in the midst of the ongoing pandemic, it is a welcomed promotion for restauranteurs...

Smartmouth and O’Connor Among Best in Nation

Smartmouth and O’Connor Among Best in Nation

  By Jeff Maisey Norfolk-based O’Connor Brewing Company and Smartmouth Brewing Company each scored gold medals earlier this fall when the Brewers Association held a virtual version of the 34th annual Great American Beer Festival in Denver. In total, 1,720...

HOLIDAY DINING: Feast Out (Or Get Gobbles To Go)

HOLIDAY DINING: Feast Out (Or Get Gobbles To Go)

(Thanksgiving to-go includes delicious Edwards’ ham biscuits from Chef Kevin Sharkey at 1608 Craft House in Virginia Beach.) By Marisa Marsey I can’t blame infectious disease expert Dr. Anthony Fauci for squashing big family gatherings at home this Thanksgiving. Even...

The Rebranding of St. George Beer

The Rebranding of St. George Beer

  By Jeff Maisey Knights, castles, dragons — oh my.  I’ve always been drawn to the imagery, symbolism and concept of St. George Brewing Company in Hampton.  From the prominent red cross on white background crest of St George and the weaponry of Medieval British...

Pandemic Brings Pizzeria to Norfolk Tap Room

Pandemic Brings Pizzeria to Norfolk Tap Room

(Vincent Ranhorn, Todd Craig, and Todd Leutner)  By Jeff Maisey Back in the 1980s and ‘90s, I used to make my way up to New York City for concerts, shopping in SoHo and the Village, and an authentic slice of the Big Apple — pizza.  When some old school music friends...

Saddle-up to the Coach House

Saddle-up to the Coach House

(Dana & Kevin Kern bring delicious bistro fare to the north end of Colley.) By Jeff Maisey I pony my hungry self up to the Coach House, ask for a Soggy Dollar Painkiller to relax my mind a bit, and peruse the menu while I await the arrival of two amigos.  It’s...

Well-Aged Williamsburg Winery

Well-Aged Williamsburg Winery

(Winemaker Matthew Meyer stands proud of his gold medal winning 2017 Petit Verdot Reserve. Courtesy photo.) By Jim Roberts In spite of the COVID-19 pandemic, 2020 is turning out to be a vintage year for the Williamsburg Winery. In January the winery won 11 medals at...

Fall For Restaurant Wines

Fall For Restaurant Wines

(At Voilà, delicious red wines from South Africa, Sonoma, and the Burgundy region of France pair perfectly with the ever-popular entree, Beef Wellington.) By Marisa Marsey When 2020 began, the biggest headaches in the wine world were tariffs and hard seltzer. Then...

757 Breweries Win Awards

757 Breweries Win Awards

(Elation Brewing Company of Norfolk scores a silver in the Fruit/Vegetable category) By Jeff Maisey Breweries from Hampton Roads scored medals in Richmond on Monday where the Virginia Craft Brewers Guild announced the 2020 winners in its ninth annual statewide...

Kings of Their New Realm

Kings of Their New Realm

(New Realm’s canned beers are everywhere these days in the Hampton Roads region)  By Jeff Maisey One year after opening its production brewery in Virginia Beach, New Realm Brewing Company conquered the Commonwealth by winning the 2019 Virginia Craft Beer Cup when...