Today’s kids are in danger of losing touch with their creative energy as public schools slash arts education programs in favor of increased skill building. Luckily, local arts organizations are stepping in to fill the void. Discover how they are keeping our youth connected to art in Tidewater Women’s September cover story: Engaging with Art.
Next check out TW’s 2017 Arts Guide where you’ll find the best local arts offerings this fall including performances, programs, and exhibitions.
TW’s 2018 editorial calendar and rate card are now available! Contact your sales rep to get the scoop on next year’s themed issues, special sections, advertising rates, and more!
Find more useful information online at www.tidewaterwomen.com and connect with TW on Facebook, Twitter and Instagram. Message, post, tweet, and gram with us this month. Tag your comments #tidewaterwomen and we will get back to you pronto!
While going on nature hikes, singing songs, and roasting s’mores around a campfire are often what draws kids to summer camp, some local girls chose adventure this summer—a camp experience that immersed them full-throttle in career exploration. Read more about Camp Fury, a program that introduces girls to firefighting as a career in this month’s Tidewater Family: Girls Fighting Fire.
Plus, don’t miss Tidewater Family’s 2017 Arts & Fun Guide, where we list opportunities for enriching fun for the whole family.
Also check out TF’s website for health information, parenting tips + our Go-To Guides to help you be the best parent you can be. We’d love to connect with you through social media, so find us on Facebook, Twitter and Instagram. Tag your messages, posts, tweets, and grams #tidewaterfamily and let’s chat!
Are you in the business of helping women get healthy and stay that way? Seeking new patients? Share your health care practice with local women in the October issue of Tidewater Women featuring our 2017 Women’s Wellness Guide and health-related editorial. We’re also offering our special advertorial section, Women in Health, where you can tell the story of your practice in a 1/3-page ad that includes a professionally written 250-word article, your photo & contact info at a reduced rate. Get more bang for your buck and keep those appointment books filled!
Parents want to make sure their kids are getting the best care possible, but may not know where to turn. You can share your health care practice with local parents in Tidewater Family’s 2017 Kids’ Wellness Guide, coming up in October. Health facilities, birthing centers, pediatricians, dental practices, weight loss, doulas, nutritionists, and dermatologists are among the providers who will be featured in this special guide. If you help kids stay healthy, let area parents know in our October issue.
Summer’s finally coming to an end, bringing cooler weather and great opportunities for fall family fun. From Halloween events to pumpkin patches, corn mazes to fall hikes, enjoying the outdoors with your family is what it’s all about. Need to spread the word about your fall activities? Call us today to find out how you can be part of Tidewater Family’s 2017 Fall Fun Guide in our October issue. Ensure your advertising dollars reach your target market in the area’s only monthly magazine for parents.
Come with Peggy to Michigan’s Upper Peninsula to discover pristine nature, honest living, and plenty of good, clean fun in this month’s Tidewater Family travel feature: Nature’s Playground: Michigan’s U.P.
Then, travel to Arizona where you’ll stay with Peggy at the White Stallion Ranch, saddle up for a horseback ride in the desert, and even try line dancing! Here’s part one of Peggy’s southwest adventure in Tidewater Women’s September travel feature: Saddle Up at White Stallion Ranch. Giddy-up!
This has been the most distracting deadline ever. Two nights ago my son and his girlfriend went to the hospital, and yesterday my first grandchild was born!! I wanted to drop everything, go to the hospital, and see Lincoln up close. But the folks who print Tidewater Women would not be happy if I missed my deadline, so duty has kept me bound to my chair even if I’m not entirely focused on what I’m doing.
My friends who have grandkids have been saying for years how wonderful it is to be a grandparent. I always shrugged it off and thought to myself that I was too young to be a grandmother and having a grandchild was way off in the future. Then when we found out Ross and Katie were expecting, the gushing started up again. “Your life will never be the same once that baby gets here,” one friend said. “You will never be the same,” another friend shared.
I shrugged all this off, too, thinking, well, I just don’t know if I’m going to fall head over heels with this baby. I shared my thoughts with a friend at church, who admitted she didn’t immediately go all ga-ga when her grandkids started arriving. Now she says she can’t get enough of them.
So I wasn’t really sure what to expect. Then Katie’s labor started, and I felt this strange feeling: worry and love and a connection to something inside that’s so deep and nameless, I can hardly describe it. It’s like there’s a thread running through me, connecting me to my ancestors, to Lincoln, and to the generations to come. It’s a feeling of timelessness and continuity, a sense of the past, present, and future all jumbled up together. It’s like we are the water in a fountain that never runs dry.
I’m finally getting what all the gushing is about, and I haven’t even met my grandson yet. So this will be a short note because I can hardly sit here any longer! Please forgive me if you find more than the usual number of typos and grammatical errors in this month’s issue. I am doing my best!
Meanwhile, I am sending out hugs to all the grandparents out there—and children and grandchildren and ancestors and future generations. Let’s try to live in harmony, for our grandchildren’s sake.
Ever notice how engaged kids are when they draw or color? The same is true when children dance, listen to music, or watch a play. Studies show that including arts in your child’s education has a positive impact on their self-esteem, motivation, and grades. In addition, kids who are involved in the arts have improved motor skills and language development. Exposure to the arts sparks creativity and increases cultural awareness as well.
In spite of these benefits, many school systems have reduced funding for arts education. Fortunately, local arts organizations are filling the void by offering programs to encourage our youth to engage in the arts, especially those who might not have the means or ability to discover art in all its forms.
MAGIC OF THE ARTS
Since 2010, the Sandler Center for the Performing Arts in Virginia Beach and the Sandler Center for the Performing Arts Foundation have collaborated on the Access the Arts Education Program. Access the Arts gives local students in grades K-8 a chance to watch a matinee performance at the Sandler Center. The foundation’s funding initially covered students in Virginia Beach, but has since expanded to seven cities in the area.
“The Sandler Center for the Performing Arts was conceived and constructed to be a cultural center and community resource,” said Christine Layne, education and programs director for the foundation. “It was a natural fit from the beginning to include educational programs.” More than 50,000 students have watched performances through Access the Arts since it began.
“It’s neat to watch kids as they get off the bus, all dressed up,” said Lisa Baehre, executive director of the foundation. “Some have never been to a live performance. We are showing children the magic of the arts.”
Last year, the foundation began a partnership with the Richmond Ballet, in which students attended a ballet performance at the Sandler Center or watched a performance at their school through the “Sandler on the Road” initiative. More than 3,000 students who attend Title I schools saw the Richmond Ballet at the center and at seven schools in Chesapeake, Norfolk, Portsmouth, and Suffolk over a three-day period in April.
“It was a unique opportunity to reach them,” Christine Layne said. “We had a lot of positive feedback from that, and we are looking forward to growing our partnership with the Richmond Ballet. We are very excited.”
Danielle Roby, senior coordinator of music education with Norfolk Public Schools, often attends performances with students through Access the Arts. She says field trips to the Sandler Center enhance the students’ arts education. “It offers enrichment and exposure to the arts, venues, and styles we may not be able to provide during the school day,” Danielle said. “The students love to get out and see the various arts venues. It’s exciting for them.”
Seeing a performance by the Richmond Ballet, for example, “is eye-opening for some students,” she continued. “It allows students to dream and plants a seed for them. It also facilitates a great conversation with the parents about what opportunities there are for students. The arts bring families together.”
The Sandler Center for the Performing Arts will partner again this school year with the Richmond Ballet. As many as 14 ballet performances are being planned. Other curriculum-based Access the Arts matinees for the 2017-18 season include My Father’s Dragon; Miss Nelson is Missing; Let It Shine: The American Civil Rights Movement; The Lightning Thief; Nugget and Fang; and Moon Mouse: A Space Odyssey. Standards of Learning information is integrated into these performances.
The Virginia Museum of Contemporary Art (MOCA) in Virginia Beach also offers a variety of educational programs for children, teens, and families. The 3,800 sq. ft. facility is home to a year-round Studio School with classes for children as young as two, including spring break and summer art camps.
Pre-K Art Day is an art class for 2-5 year-olds that combines gallery tours, literacy, creative movement exercises, and hands-on art making for parent/guardian and child. 1st Art, a similar program, welcomes children ages 2-5 to create art in a studio designed just for them. Besides having fun, the students also improve motor skills and self-confidence.
Teens also have dedicated programs. The popular Teen Apprenticeship Program (TAP) is a unique opportunity for 12 high school juniors and seniors to learn about contemporary art, MOCA, and related careers in the arts. These students plan Teen Takeover Nights, during which teens from local schools gather to enjoy an evening of art, music, mocktails, and free eats.
MOCA also offers activities and programming at area elementary schools, numerous festivals, and local libraries. The museum teams with the Girl Scouts of the Colonial Coast to provide opportunities for girls to earn badges.
“Education is core to MOCA’s mission,” said Dot Greene, public relations and marketing specialist. “We are particularly honored to educate close to 12,000 local students each year in grades one through five, using ten different outreach programs.”
In addition to children’s programming, MOCA features a variety of exhibition-inspired classes, events, films, and workshops for adults, including artist talks, master classes, panel discussions, and hands-on mixers like Art Crush.
Art Crush “is a gallery-centered experience,” said Truly Matthews, MOCA’s associate curator of education. “It’s a fun way for adults to engage in art, spend more time with a piece of work, and talk about art with other people.”
The museum is partnering with the Mariners’ Museum in Newport News for one of its fall exhibits, Wayne White: MONITORIUM, a unique perspective on the 1862 Battle of Hampton Roads through oversized props, puppets, sounds and lighting. Nine Virginia artists, meanwhile, will be featured in the second fall exhibit, Small Works, Tall Tales.
GOOD FOR KIDS
Besides bringing high caliber arts performances to our region year round, the Virginia Arts Festival in Norfolk also offers outreach programs and maintains an on-going partnership with the Sandler Center for the Performing Arts.
“We believe that the performing arts are beautiful, enriching, and life-affirming, and we want to offer the arts to people in our community of all ages,” said Christine Foust, director of education and community engagement for Virginia Arts Festival.
“With younger students, we want to expose them to the arts as early as possible, and not just any art but to the world-class artists that the Festival brings to Norfolk,” Christine continued. “For students in middle school and older, we want our programs to encourage them to play an instrument, sing in the choir, join a theatre or a dance program because we know that creative activities are good for kids.”
“For all ages of students, the arts have a huge impact on motivation,” she noted. “Students involved in music have better overall school performance. And sometimes it takes seeing an arts event to open a student’s mind to this kind of pursuit.”
Recently the Virginia Arts Festival offered a Master Class program with Urban Bush Women at Booker T. Washington High School in Norfolk.
“Bringing in programs like this gives the students the opportunity to broaden their horizons,” said Tamika Steeley, director of dance for the Academy of the Arts program at Booker T. Washington High School. “In a lot of cases, students cannot afford to take classes outside of school or go see these shows. Having the opportunity to have such outstanding groups come to the schools is a very, very important thing for them to expand their education in the arts.”
An arts education can especially benefit students in an urban school district. “We know that in addition to making students into complete, well-rounded individuals, the arts can also help combat some of the specific issues in an urban school system and can drastically improve graduation rates and civic engagement,” Christine added. “High school graduates who were involved in arts programs are more likely to volunteer in their communities and more likely to vote.”
FORCE OF ENERGY
In addition to partnering with local schools on arts programming, the Virginia Arts Festival also has an in-house program, The Rhythm Project.
“This is the festival’s year-long community engagement program, in which over 200 students participate in our nine steel drum ensembles,” Christine explained.
Virginia Arts Festival started The Rhythm Project in 1996 in Portsmouth. Today it also serves students in Norfolk and Virginia Beach. Four elementary schools and three middle school percussion groups feed into the program’s premiere drum ensemble, the All-Stars, which is a year-round program for high school students. The group has been recognized internationally and opened for or shared the stage with famous artists, including Gladys Knight, pan artist Victor Provost, and the Metropolitan Jazz Orchestra.
Elly Carlson participated in The Rhythm Project during her senior year at Salem High School in Virginia Beach after hearing about the program through a friend.
“What originally drew me to the art form was the energy [of] the group,” she said. “I had never seen any type of music where you actively physically expressed it while playing. I wanted to be a part of that force of energy. My favorite part continues to be dancing, smiling, and playing with my friends, who love it as much as I do.”
“Art is an amazing form of expression,” Elly continued. “Rhythm Project gave me the opportunity to study under phenomenal instructors. I traveled and played with world-class artists and was able to soak up tons of knowledge along the way. This group completely changed my life. It heavily influenced my decision to continue my education in music. I can easily say that I would not be the same person without this amazing program. I have loved every second of it and highly recommend it to anyone who has the opportunity to join.”
Brandy Centolanza is a freelance writer who covers health, travel, parenting, education, business, and community issues for several publications.
Court Watson grew up in Chesapeake and studied acting with the Hurrah Players. In college Court studied scene design and costume design and graduated with a BFA from Virginia Commonwealth University and an MFA from New York University. Court founded his own company, Sehnsucht, Inc., in 2012 and has designed over fifty productions. He’s also a painter, and his works are full of transformative color and motion.
Now Court is back in town as set and costume designer for Virginia Opera’s upcoming production of Samson and Delilah. During our hour-long interview, Court impressed me as a young man who has reached the pinnacle of success but continually credits and praises the colleagues and mentors who’ve helped him succeed.
TW: Tell us what you do as a designer.
Court: We’re there to support the director’s vision and the performers’ storytelling. Everything we do is to keep the audience in the moment during the performance. It’s a bigger undertaking than people realize. I design the big picture, and then I partner with twenty crafts people and artists that make what’s actually going to be on stage. At the end of the day, the audience doesn’t see what my hand touched. They just see what I inspired this great team of really talented people to do.
TW: Do you consider elements of the performers’ personalities when developing their costumes?
Court: Absolutely. For Katharine Goeldner [who plays Delilah] I hope I picked her favorite color for her first dress. She has these fantastic publicity photos, and that impacted what the color of her first dress was going to be.
TW: What was it like working with costume designer William Ivey Long at North Carolina’s outdoor drama, The Lost Colony?
Court: My job the first summer was painting Native American backsides and scrubbing the toilets to get the makeup off. William grew up in North Carolina and has a connection with the Lost Colony, going back to the 1950s, and he designed the first Broadway show I ever saw. In this industry, our heroes are real people: living, breathing human beings with working studios in NYC. I share a studio with the genius Ann Hould-Ward. Every day going to work is an inspiration. There’s very much a mentoring relationship in this business, which goes back 100 years.
TW: What’s your favorite thing to do in your free time?
Court: I consider myself an artist, and you can’t turn that off. It’s a thunderstorm in your head. Everything in your life influences what your art is, and I draw and paint a lot in my spare time.
TW: What drew you to this profession?
Court: There’s this strange contract that the audience enters into when they walk into the theatre. They’re agreeing to participate in this artificial universe, and that always struck me as a kid. I felt like an outsider growing up at Western Branch, I was a bullied kid, and I found a community of people in the theatre that were open minded and supportive of me when I was nine years old and figuring out what all that was.
TW: You mentioned you were surprised your peers at VCU hadn’t seen as much theatre as you had.
Court: There’s a legitimate arts district in Norfolk. Someone from somewhere else—they don’t have all of that. I was exposed to so much that my peers weren’t, and I took it for granted. At the Governor School, I learned how to build a scale model and do costume sketches by the time I was 18.
TW: What inspired the name of your company?
Court: Sehnsucht [Zane zookt]. It means the search for sense, longing, yearning, or aspiration. It’s in nearly every German musical and opera. It’s a word pregnant with meaning. In musical theatre we say that there’s an “I Want” song. It’s where the leading man or lady tells you what they’re looking for in life, what their dream is, and sehnsucht sums all of that up in one very simple word.
TW: What’s the most challenging show you’ve done?
Court: I designed a production of The Sound of Music in Salzburg, where the story happened. There were people in the audience that know [the Von Trapps]. I wasn’t there in the 30s, and I can’t say what it was like when the Nazis invaded, but there were people in the audience who did. At opening night I gave Johannes von Trapp a backstage tour. He grabbed my hand and said no one had ever gotten it this right before, and that felt good. Six years later the show is still running there.
TW: If you could choose any story to design what would it be?
Court: I love Wagner and Mozart. I’d love a crack at Les Miserables, something that’s that iconic. When you close your eyes and you know what the original production looked like, having that ability to crack that nut in a different way in a different time for a different audience is an exciting opportunity.
Lisa Bowditch graduated from Old Dominion University with a Master’s in literature. Currently she teaches middle-school students with disabilities in Newport News. She likes hiking in isolated places and helping out at her family’s business, The Hornsby House Inn in Yorktown.
Welcome to Tidewater Women’s September 2017 Calendar of Events
Friendly Friday Yoga Flow - 10-11:30 a.m. Every Fri. ($) Wells Therapeutics 490-9488 (VB)
Bier Fest - 10 a.m.-9 p.m. Select dates thru 9/17. German food, music & int’l craft beers. ($) Busch Gardens 229-4386 (W)
Seasoned and Sassy - 2 p.m. Every Fri. Get active & socialize! Black Library 441-5806 (N)
Bike Nights - 4-7 p.m. Nightly thru 10/15. ($) Norfolk Botanical Garden 441-5830 (N)
Concert in the Courtyard - 5-8 p.m. Every 1st Fri. Ports. Art & Cultural Ctr. 393-8543 (P)
Downtown Norfolk Council First Fridays - 5-8:30 p.m. Live music. TCC Plaza, 300 Block of Granby St. 623-1757 (N)
Meditation: Unwind the Mind - 5:30-6:15 p.m. Most Fri. ($) Keajra Kadampa Buddhist Center, 156 Newtown Rd. #A2 504-4425 (VB)
American Music Festival - 6:30 p.m. Enjoy five major headline bands along the beach. ($) 5th Street Stage 385-7873 (VB)
Party at the Pier - 7-10 p.m. Music, food trucks, and dancing. Little Island Park 385-2990 (VB)
Healing Sanctuary - 7:25 p.m. Most 1st Fri. thru Nov. Emmanuel Episcopal Church, 5181 Singleton Way 932-5263 (VB)
Paint Night - 7:30 p.m.-9:30 p.m. Every 1st Fri. ($) Downing Gross Cultural Art Ctr. 247-8950 (NN)
Old Beach Farmers’ Market - 8 a.m.-noon. Every Sat thru 10/28. Produce, meat, baked goods & more. 19th & Cypress 428-5444 (VB)
Farmers’ Market - 8 a.m.-noon. Every Sat thru 10/28. McDonald Garden Center, 1144 Independence Blvd. 464-5564 (VB)
Farmers’ Market - 9 a.m.-1 p.m. Every Sat. Olde Towne Portsmouth 397-6395 (P)
Farmers’ Fare Market - 9 a.m.-noon. Every Sat. Fresh veggies + more. 4730 Hammock La. www.farmersfaremarket.com (N)
Suffolk Farmers’ Market - 9 a.m.-1 p.m. Every Sat. Suffolk Visitor Center 514-4130 (S)
Piggin’ & Grinnin’ - 9 a.m.-10 p.m. Music, craft vendors, a food truck rodeo, and more. ($) Tryon Palace 252-639-3542 (New Bern)
Fort Huger Civil War Walking Tour - 10-11 a.m. RR Fort Huger, 15080 Talcott Terrace 373-0115 (Smithfield)
VBIANDS Speaker: Ellyn Dye - 10 a.m.-noon. Workshop 2-4 p.m. Learn about her experience in the Light. ($) Edgar Cayce’s A.R.E. 428-3588 (VB)
Old Towne Antiques to Flea Market - 10 a.m.-2 p.m. Every 1st Sat. Middle St. Garage 339-1876 (P)
Create Your Own Chocolate Bar - 11 a.m.-2 p.m. Every 1st Sat. Choose fun toppings. ($) The Royal Chocolate 557-6925 (VB)
Fuse Fest - 12-9 p.m. Ignite hope through art, music, culture, and interactive zones. Spon. by Teens with a Purpose. Downtown Church St. 747-2679 (N)
Prayers for World Peace - 10:30 a.m.-noon. Every Sun. Keajra Kadampa Buddhist Center, 156 Newtown Rd. #A2 504-4425 (VB)
Drag Yourself to Brunch - 11 a.m. & 2 p.m. Every Sun. Age 18+ High-energy entertainment from female impersonators. RR ($) Croc’s 19th Street Bistro 428-5444 (VB)
Group Life Coaching & Hypnosis - 1-3 p.m. Every Sun. Manifest your dreams. RR ($) 101 N. Lynnhaven Rd. #205 729-2716 (VB)
One Love Caribbean Steel Drum Band - 5:30-7:30 p.m. Bring a lawn chair. Elizabeth River Park 382-6411 (C)
Symphony Under the Stars - 6-9 p.m. Enjoy music from Va. Symphony Orchestra and visit the ArtsAlive! tent. City Park 382-6411 (C)
Big Bands on the Bay Grand Finale - 7-10 p.m. Ocean View Beach Park 441-2345 (N)
Monday Yoga Flow - 10-11:30 a.m. Every Mon. ($) Wells Therapeutics 490-9488 (VB)
Lunchtime Meditation - 12:15-12:45 p.m. Most Mon. ($) Keajra Kadampa Buddhist Center, 156 Newtown Rd. #A2 504-4425 (VB)
Saints Alive Senior Chorus - 12:30 p.m. Every Mon. St. Paul’s UMC, 437 Providence Rd. 543-5721 (C)
Yoga for Special Needs - 4:30-5:45 p.m. Every Mon. A class for those w/physical challenges. RR ($) Wells Therapeutics 313-4962 (VB)
Yoga/Functional Fitness - 5:30-6:50 p.m. Ages 50-80. Open level classes on alt. Mon. ($) Old Donation Episcopal Church 464-0250 (VB)
Sophisticated Steppers - 5:45-7:15 p.m. Every Mon. Seniors dance. ($) Cuffee Community Ctr., 2019 Windy Rd., 382-6411 (C)
Functional Forum - 6:30 p.m. Every 1st Mon. Get the latest health news. Holistic Family Practice 685-4325 (VB)
Peace Circle Group w/ Rev. Laura - 6:30-8 p.m. Every 1st Mon. Unity Church of Tidewater, 5580 Shell Rd. 804-818-6084 (VB)
Drum Circle - 7-10 p.m. Every Mon. Donations accepted. Mystic Moon, 3365 N. Military Hwy. 855-3280 (N)
Yoga in the Galleries - 8:45-9:45 a.m. Every Tues. RR ($) Chrysler Museum 664-6200 (N)
Yin Yoga - 10:45 a.m. Every Tues. Seniors. Improve flexibility and strengthen muscles. RR ($) PrimePlus, 7300 Newport Ave. 625-5857 (N)
Behind the Scenes: Costume Shop - 2-3 p.m. Learn about sewing techniques and current projects. ($) Tryon Palace 252-639-3542 (New Bern)
Keep Me in Stitches - 2-5 p.m. Every Tues. Knit & crochet for cancer patients. Grace Comm. Church, 1725 Salem Rd. 404-6593 (VB)
Cooperative Co-Parenting - 4-8 p.m. Every 1st Tues. Prevent problems related to divorce. RR ($) 135 Hall Ave., 624-6666 (S)
Peppy Steppers - 5:45-7:15 p.m. Every Tues. Seniors dance. ($) Western Branch Community Center 382-6411 (C)
Life 101- 6-7:15 p.m. ($) Wells Therapeutics 490-9488 (VB)
Pocahontas in Image and Myth - 7 p.m. Enjoy this lecture on the Powhatan princess. ($) Jamestown Settlement 253-4838 (W)
Magic of Harmony Show Chorus Rehearsals - 7-9 p.m. Every Tues. Visitors welcome. Tabb High School Chorus Rm., 4431 Big Bethel Rd. 566-8600 (Y)
Spontaneous Theater Troupe Training - 7-9 p.m. Every Tues. RR ($) Fellowship Center, 620 14th St. 472-0662 (VB)
In-Depth Study Program - 7-9:30 p.m. Every Tues. Meditation, chanted prayers & more. ($) Keajra Kadampa Buddhist Ctr. 504-4425 (VB)
Early Morning Spiritual Practice w/ Rev. Ruth - 6:30-7 a.m. Free conference call. 641-715-3200, code: 1019089# (remote)
Skippers Farm Market - 9 a.m.-4 p.m. Every Wed. thru Nov. 1. 748 Battlefield Blvd. N. 368-0355 (C)
All the Buzz: Beneficial Bugs - 9:30-10:30 a.m. Learn about insects and arachnids that help maintain a natural balance. RR ($) Norfolk Botanical Garden 441-5830 (N)
Harmony & Fitness Yoga - 9:30 a.m. Every Wed. ($) Eliz. Gardens 473-3234 (Manteo)
Breastfeeding Support Group - 10-11:30 a.m. Lifestyle Center 312-3000 (C)
Crocheting - 10 a.m.-noon. Seniors. Every Wed. Bring supplies. South Norfolk Community Center 543-5721 (C)
Chesapeake Social & Newcomers Club - 11 a.m.-1 p.m. Every 1st Wed. RSVP by preceding Friday. RR ($) Traditions Grill, Chesapeake Golf Club 966-9000 (C)
Auditions: Roald Dahl’s Willy Wonka - 4 p.m. thru Thurs. All ages. RR Downing-Gross Cultural Arts Center 247-8950 (NN)
Food Truck Hump Days - 4 p.m.-dusk. Also 9/20. Gourmet fare + live entertainment. Battlefield Park 408-2245 (C)
My Healthy Weight - 6-7:30 p.m. RR ($) Lifestyle Center 312-3000 (C)
OBC Trivia Night - 6-8 p.m. Every 1st Wed. ($) O’Connor Brewing Co. 623-2337 (N)
Weekly Meditation Class - 6:30-8 p.m. Most Wed. ($) Fred Heutte Ctr. 504-4425 (N)
Paint 4 Fun - 9 a.m.-2 p.m. Every Thurs. Seniors. River Crest Community Ctr. 436-3100 (C)
City Center Farmers’ Market - 10 a.m.-2 p.m. Every Thurs. City Center at Oyster Point 873-2020 (NN)
Art Connections - 1 p.m. Every Thurs. Seniors. All mediums accepted. PrimePlus 7300 Newport Ave. 625-5857 (N)
Ask the Artist - 5:30 p.m. Every Thurs. Engage with works of art through artist talks. d’ART Center 625-4211 (N)
Sunset Thursdays - 6:30-9 p.m. Every Thurs. in Sept. Music and food on the Elizabeth River. Portside 393-5111 (P)
Healing Energy: An Angel Meditation - 7-8 p.m. ($) Wells Therapeutics 490-9488 (VB)
Veterans Support Group - 7-8:30 p.m. Lifestyle Center 312-3000 (C)
Weekly Drop-In Meditation Class - 7-8:30 p.m. Most Thurs. Guided meditation & discussion. ($) Keajra Kadampa Buddhist Center, 156 Newtown Rd. #A2 504-4425 (VB)
Planetarium Show: Full Dome Experience - 8 p.m. Every Thurs. in Sep. ($) Chesapeake Planetarium 547-0153 (C)
Garden Tracks - 9:30-10:30 a.m. Get wellness tips while enjoying the garden. RR ($) Norfolk Botanical Garden 441-5830 (N)
Norfolk Notable Cemetery Tour - 6-8 p.m. Learn about Elmwood’s most notable residents. Donation. Elmwood Cemetery 621-3710 (N)
Earth, Wind & Fire Exhibition Opening - 6:30-8:30 p.m. Celebrate ancient elements of life expressed in art. The Artists Gallery, 608 Norfolk Ave. 425-6671 (VB)
Muse Jam - 7-10 p.m. Every 2nd Fri. Read your work, play music, or just listen. Muse Writers Center 818-9880 (N)
Bird and Plant Walk - 7:30 a.m. w/ Lynnhaven River Now. RR Brock Environmental Center 962-5398 (VB)
Freedom Run - 8 a.m. Kids Run 10 a.m. Honor those who lost their lives on Sep. 11, 2001. RR ($) Dismal Swamp Canal Trail 382-8244 (C)
Watercolors: Wildflowers & Bluebirds - 9 a.m.-1:30 p.m. Expand your artistic palate. RR ($) Norfolk Botanical Garden 441-5830 (N)
VBCF Annual Victory Walk - 9 a.m. All ages. Hosted by HR Va. Breast Cancer Foundation. RR ($) Portsmouth Pavilion 393-8885 (P)
River Cleanup - 9 a.m.-noon. Every 2nd Sat. Locations vary. Spon. by Lynnhaven River Now. Call for more info. 962-5398 (VB)
Go Green Expo - 10 a.m.-3 p.m. Spon. by VCE Peninsula Master Gardeners. Bake sale, chef demos, vendor hall, and more. ($) Midtown Community Center 591-4838 (NN)
Downtown Street Festival - 11 a.m.-5 p.m. Food, vendors, and more from Finney Ave. to Washington St. Downtown Suffolk 514-7627 (S)
Open House - 12:30-4:30 p.m. Artwork, door prizes, guided tours, and demos. Ocean View Arts 961-0808 (N)
The Many Faces of Preservation Talk - 2:30 p.m. Where does conservation end and restoration begin? ($) Mariners’ Museum 596-2222 (NN)
Taste 2.0 - 2:30-5:30 p.m. Sample dishes from participating restaurants to raise money for the hungry. ($) Olde Towne 201-6284 (P)
Opera in the Park - 6-10 p.m. Browse the Artists’ Market, enjoy food and opera music. Town Point Park 441-2345 (N)
Celebrating Va. Filmmakers - 7-9 p.m. Enjoy upcoming trailers, panel discussion, and a special announcement! ($) Downing-Gross Cultural Arts Center 247-8950 (NN)
Second Sundays Williamsburg - 11 a.m.-5 p.m. Enjoy living history, artisans & more. Merchant’s Square 879-3029 (W)
Sunset Cruise - 6-7:30 p.m. Enjoy an informative cruise on Lake Whitehurst. RR ($) Norfolk Botanical Garden 441-5830 (N)
9-11 Remembrance Ceremony - 6:30 p.m. High Street Landing 393-5111 (P)
Women’s Voices Book Club - 7:30 p.m. Every 2nd Mon. New members welcome. Barnes & Noble, 4485 Va. Beach Blvd. 671-7929 (VB)
Coffee Connection - 7:30-9 a.m. Spon. by Va. Peninsula Chamber. RR Courtyard by Marriot, 105 Cybernetics Way 262-2000 (Yorktown)
Defense & National Security Innovation Summit - 9 a.m. thru Wed. Presentations, opportunities, solutions, demos, and more. RR ($) Norfolk Waterside Marriott, 235 E. Main St. 202-552-0179 (N)
Business Education Seminar - 3-4 p.m. Learn about leading high-performing teams. RR ($) Va. Peninsula Chamber of Commerce, 21 Enterprise Pkwy 262-2000 (H)
Find Your Cause Fair - 5-7 p.m. Discover volunteer opportunities. Atlantic Bay HQ, 596 Lynnhaven Pkwy. 213-1660 (VB)
Cooperative Co-Parenting - 5-9 p.m. Every 2nd Tues. Prevent potential problems. RR ($) 424 W. 21st St., 624-6666 (N)
Adult/Child/Infant CPR/AED Class - 6 p.m. RR ($) Lifestyle Center 312-6132 (C)
Weight Loss Surgery Information Seminar - 6 p.m. RR Lifestyle Center 312-6132 (C)
Weekday Wine Down - 6-8:30 p.m. Sample wine and paint your own glass! RR ($) Norfolk Botanical Garden 441-5830 (N)
Garden Origami: Autumn Nights - 6:30-8:30 p.m. Create nature-inspired works of art. RR ($) Norfolk Botanical Garden 441-5830 (N)
25 Mics: Spoken Word and Open Mic Night - 7-8:30 p.m. Every 2nd Tues. Downing-Gross Cultural Arts Center 247-8950 (NN)
C’Mon Get Happy Luncheon - 11:30 a.m.-1 p.m. Learn skills to be happy. RR Pop’s Diner Greenbrier 635-5379 (C)
Palace Tours: Oktoberfest - 5:30-7 p.m. Imbibe some German beers during a discussion about Oktoberfest. RR ($) Tryon Palace 252-639-3542 (New Bern)
Croc’s Cooking Class - 6 p.m. Every 2nd Wed. Incl. tastings and wine. RR ($) Croc’s 19th Street Bistro 428-5444 (VB)
Reel Indian: The Portrayal of Native Americans in Film - 7 p.m. Enjoy this lecture relating to current the current “Pocahontas Imagined” exhibition. ($) Jamestown Settlement 253-4838 (W)
Va. Stage Company: “Ring Of Fire: The Music of Johnny Cash” - 7:30 p.m. Times vary thru 10/1. Explore love, family, and heartache through the tumultuous biography of Johnny Cash. ($) Wells Theatre 627-6988 (N)
Breast Thermography - 10-3 p.m. Call to schedule. RR ($) Wells Therapeutics 490-9488 (VB)
Cancer Education Support Group - 10:30 a.m. Cancer Treatment Center 312-3000 (C)
Pink Bag Lunch: High Heels and Cute Shoes - 11:30 a.m.-1 p.m. What they are really doing to your feet and how to remedy the problem. RR ($) Va. Peninsula Chamber of Commerce, 21 Enterprise Pkwy 262-2000 (H)
HR Writers: 9th Annual Writers Conference -12 p.m. Times vary thru Sat. Workshops, agent pitches, writer’s boot camp, and more. RR ($) Holiday Inn VB/Norfolk Hotel & Conference Center, 5655 Greenwich Rd. 639-6146 (VB)
Haven of Safety: The Kaiser’s Courteous Pirates - 4 p.m. Learn about the WWI-era German sailors who were interned at Norfolk Navy Yard. Churchland Library 393-5258 (P)
HR Chamber Wing Fling - 4:30-7:30 p.m. Wing sampling, craft beer, music, and more. ($) Bayside Harley Davidson 622-2312 (P)
CoolSculpting Event - 5:30 p.m. Learn more about this non-invasive treatment to reduce fat. RR Ches. Vein & Med Spa 663-5463 (C)
Wine After Work - 5:30 p.m. Hosted by WSWA-HR. Complimentary glass of wine and free business info. RR Simply Fresh Café 635-5379 (VB)
Art After Dark - 6-8 p.m. Every 2nd Thurs. Enjoy food and drinks, music, and more. Peninsula Fine Arts Center 596-8175 (NN)
Lalique Roaring Twenties Soiree - 6-9 p.m. Live jazz, speakeasy lounge, and cash bar. Era appropriate attire encouraged. RR ($) Chrysler Museum 664-6200 (N)
Gardening for the Home Brewer - 6:30-8:30 p.m. Learn the basics of home brews! RR ($) Norfolk Botanical Garden 441-5830 (N)
Shakespeare’s “The Tempest” - 7 p.m. thru 9/16. Also 9/21-23. See how America’s first colonists would have staged production of the play. ($) Jamestown Settlement 253-4838 (W)
Caregiver Support Group - 12-1 p.m. Every 3rd Fri. For caregivers of the elderly. Nimmo UMC 422-1292 (VB)
Lalique Inside and Out - 6:15 p.m. Enjoy a private tour followed by a lecture/demo. RR ($) Chrysler Museum 664-6200 (N)
Exhibit Opening - 6:30-8:30 p.m. Join us for tall tales and sailor songs. Meet artists and enjoy gypsy jazz with JANKS, creative cuisine, complimentary valet, and cash bar. ($) Va. MOCA 425-0000 (VB)
The Bra-ha-ha 5K - 8 a.m. RR ($) Chesapeake Regional Healthcare www.brahaha.org, 312-3000 (C)
Walk to End Alzheimer’s - 8:30 a.m. 1- and 3-mile options. RR ($) Constant’s Wharf 793-5064 (S)
Healthcare Provider CPR - 8:30 a.m.-1 p.m. RR ($) Lifestyle Center 312-6132 (C)
Old Beach Farmers’ Market: We’re a 10 - 8 a.m.-noon. Bring your pet for a “yappy parade” and visit the petting zoo. 19th & Cypress 428-5444 (VB)
Bonsai Workshop - 9 a.m.-1 p.m. Learn design and care. RR ($) Norfolk Botanical Garden 441-5830 (N)
Outdoor Yoga - 10-11 a.m. Connect with nature. RR ($) Norfolk Botanical Garden 441-5830 (N)
Monarch Tag & Release - 10 a.m.-3 p.m. Help tag butterflies. ($) Norfolk Botanical Garden 551-5830 (N)
Elite Fleet of Virginia Beach - 10 a.m.-5 p.m. See radio-controlled model boats. Nauticus 664-1000 (N)
Happy Birthday, Lightship! - 10 a.m.-5 p.m. Music, living history, crafts, and cake! Lightship Portsmouth Museum 393-8591 (P)
Va. Craft Beer and Wine Festival - 2-6 p.m. Samples + entertainment. Portsmouth Pavilion 393-8181 (P)
Civil War Lecture Series - 2:30 p.m. USS Mississippi: Ship of the Manifest Destiny. ($) Mariners’ Museum 596-2222 (NN)
Growlfest 2017 - 5:30-9 p.m. Tour the zoo with your favorite brew, food trucks, yard games, bounce houses, and more. ($) Va. Zoo 441-2374 (N)
Genealogical Society Meeting - 6-9 p.m. 3rd Sat. Sept.-Jun. Central Lib. 385-0120 (VB)
ETC Concert at the Point - 6-10 p.m. incl. a hospitality tent with food + more. ($) Town Point Park 441-2345 (N)
Gallery Crawl: The Secret Life of Objects - 6:30 p.m. Sip, savor, and explore rare artifacts. RR ($) Mariners’ Museum 596-2222 (NN)
SkyWatch - 8 p.m. Northwest River Park 382-6411 (C)
Living to Laugh Out Loud - 8-9:30 p.m. Family. A comedy show of pure, clean fun! ($) Downing-Gross Cultural Arts Center 247-8950 (NN)
CHKD Survivor Day - 1-4 p.m. Food, speakers + activities to honor those who have fought cancer. RR Va. Living Museum 595-1900 (NN)
Men for Hope Celebrity Weekend Extravaganza - 6 p.m. Enjoy old-school hip-hop and favorite R&B hits! ($) Chrysler Hall 664-6464 (N)
ACHI Women Supporting Women Association, Inc. Meeting - 6 p.m. Open to members and guests. RR Outback Steakhouse, Kemps River Crossing 625-4321(VB)
Writer’s Block - 7 p.m. Every 3rd Mon. New members welcome. Barnes & Noble, 4485 Va. Beach Blvd. 671-7929 (VB)
Fall Perennials Walk - 9:30-11:30 a.m. RR ($) Norfolk Botanical Garden 441-5830 (N)
Alzheimer’s Association: The Basics - 11 a.m.-1 p.m. Lunch and Learn. RR The Crossings at Independence, 2077 S. Independence Blvd. 800-272-3900 (VB)
Movie Night - 4:30 p.m. Every 3rd Tues. Enjoy movie snacks! Black Library 441-5806 (N)
Dinner for a Cause - 4:30-9 p.m. Mention Bra-ha-ha and they’ll donate 10% of net sales! ($) Pungo Pizza 312-3000 (C)
Family and Friends Support Group - 6 p.m. Every 3rd Tues. Learn how to support a loved one in an abusive relationship. Perry Safe Harbor Ctr., 2620 Southern Blvd. 631-0710 (VB)
Bourbon, Burgers & Bingo - 6-9 p.m. Every 3rd Tues. RR ($) Croc’s 19th St. Bistro 428-5444 (VB)
Home Cleaning Products & Natural Pesticides - 6:30-8:30 p.m. Learn how to make environmentally-safe products. RR ($) Norfolk Botanical Garden 441-5830 (N)
Oneness Blessing - 7-8 p.m. Every 3rd Tues. Move into a higher state of consciousness. Donation. Wells Therapeutics 225-1496 (VB)
Overview of Developmental Disabilities for Case Managers - 9 a.m.-5 p.m. Spon. by Region V Child REACH. RR Western Tidewater Community Services Board 621-5527(S)
Senior Advocate Round Table - 12-1 p.m. Every 3rd Wed. RR Va. Peninsula Chamber of Commerce 262-2000 (H)
Senior Advocate Round Table - 4-6 p.m. Every 3rd Wed. Learn about services for seniors. HR Chamber 645-6364 (N)
Kayak Demos - 4-8 p.m. Weather permitting. Battlefield Park 382-6411 (C)
Deeper in Debt: Women and Student Loans - 6:30 p.m. Hosted by AAUW. Non-members welcome. RR ODU, 1881 University Dr. 646-3947 (VB)
The Writer’s Shelf - 7 p.m. Every 3rd Wed. New members welcome. RR Barnes & Noble, 4485 Va. Beach Blvd. 671-7929 (VB)
Va. Symphony: “Unforgettable: The Music of Nat King Cole” - 8 p.m. ($) Chrysler Hall 664-6464 (N)
Turning Vision into Action - 7:30 a.m.-5:30 p.m. Presented by Women in Defense Greater HR Chapter. Networking and sessions. RR ($) Holiday Inn VB-Norfolk Conference Center, 5655 Greenwich Rd. (VB)
Guided Kayak Tour: Sunset Paddle - 5-7 p.m. Enjoy a relaxing paddle on Lake Whitehurst. RR ($) Norfolk Botanical Garden 441-5830 (N)
Family Health 101 - 6 p.m. RR ($) Lifestyle Center 312-5144 (C)
Diabetes Sisters Support Group - 6:30 p.m. Lifestyle Center 312-3000 (C)
Beginning Digital Photography - 6:30-8:30 p.m. RR ($) Norfolk Botanical Garden 441-5830 (N)
Craft Hope - 10:30 a.m. Every 4th Fri. Knit and crochet for charity. RR Little Creek Library 441-1751 (N)
It’s Fall, Y’all - 5-8 p.m. Enjoy BBQ, oysters, adaptive games, and live bluegrass music to support those with disabilities. RR ($) St. Mary’s Home, 6171 Kempsville Cir. 622-2208 (N)
Walk to End Alzheimer’s - 8:30 a.m. 5K and 1-mile option. RR ($) Neptune Park 793-5064 (VB)
Nature Hike - 9-11 a.m. Northwest River Park 382-6411 (C)
Volunteer Service Day - 9-11 a.m. Be a river hero. RR Paradise Creek Nature Park 399-7487 (P)
Fish Bowl Parade - 10 a.m.-noon. Travels down London Blvd. to Olde Towne. I.C. Norcom High 397-0550 (P)
Cooperative Co-Parenting - 10 a.m.-2 p.m. Every 4th Sat. Recognize effects of divorce and prevent potential problems. RR ($) 424 W. 21st St., 624-6666 (N)
Fall Gardening Festival - 10 a.m.-3 p.m. Children’s activities, demos, make-and-takes, and garden tours. HRAREC, 1444 Diamond Springs Rd. 385-8156 (VB)
Family Fun Day - 10 a.m.-6 p.m. Free paddle boat, bike, and canoe rentals, putt-putt, wagon rides, fishing, and more. Northwest River Park 382-6411 (C)
World Rhino Day - 11 a.m.-2 p.m. Celebrate rhinos with story time, keeper chats, activities, and discovery stations. ($) Va. Zoo 441-2374 (N)
Ribtoberfest & Southern Foodways - 12-8 p.m. Enjoy southern-inspired dishes, cool craft brews, and a live blues band. Town Point Park 441-2345 (N)
Longleaf Pine Basket Weaving Workshop - 2-4 p.m. Learn how to weave baskets from longleaf pine needles. ($) Mariners’ Museum 596-2222 (NN)
Roots Rising Music Fest - 3-11 p.m. Enjoy music that honors the rich heritage of American music. ($) Portsmouth Pavilion 393-8181 (P)
Howl-O-Scream - 6 p.m. thru 10/29. Tour haunted houses and Terror-tories and enjoy spooky live shows. ($) Busch Gardens 229-4386 (W)
TBMA Monthly Bluegrass Concert - 7 p.m. Catch the best in local bluegrass. Donations ($) Hickory Ruritan Club 421-0297 (C)
Attucks Jazz Club: Nicole Henry - 8 p.m. ($) Attucks Theatre 282-2822 (N)
Victor Wooten: Holst’s The Planets - 8 p.m. 5-time Grammy winner performs w/ Va. Symphony. ($) Chrysler Hall 664-6464 (N)
Bird Watching on the Noland Trail - 7-10 a.m. Learn to identify local species. Mariners’ Museum 596-2222 (NN)
9th Annual Fall Fest - 12:30-3 p.m. ($) Military Aviation Museum, 1341 Princess Anne Rd. 426-6387 (VB)
Oyster Crush - 1-6 p.m. Charity fundraiser oyster roast. ($) Cape Henry Rotary Club 286-1099 (VB)
Taste 2.0 - 2:30-5:30 p.m. Sample dishes from participating restaurants to raise money for the hungry. ($) Downtown Norfolk 201-6284 (N)
STAR Performance Luncheon - 12 p.m. Learn how to UPLevel to Star Performer. RR Simply Fresh Café 635-5379 (VB)
Movie Night - 5 p.m. Every last Mon. Call for titles. Larchmont Library 441-5335 (N)
Caregiver Support Group - 5:30 p.m. Every 4th Mon. RR Prime Plus, 7300 Newport Ave. 800-272-3900 (N)
Diehn Concert Series: Indian Classical Music - 8 p.m. w/ Amjad Ali Khan, Ayaan Ali Bangash, and Amaan Ali Bangash. ($) ODU Diehn Center 683-5305 (N)
Business Education Seminar: Keeping the Doors Open - 8-10 a.m. RR ($) Va. Peninsula Chamber of Commerce, 21 Enterprise Pkwy 262-2000 (H)
Coffee & Conversation: English Gardens - 9:30-11 a.m. Learn about England’s most beautiful gardens. RR ($) Norfolk Botanical Garden 441-5830 (N)
Alzheimer’s Association: Know the Ten Signs - 10 a.m.-noon. Early detection matters. RR Primeplus, 7300 Newport Ave. 800-272-3900 (N)
Weight Loss Surgery Information Seminar - 6 p.m. RR Lifestyle Center at Chesapeake Regional Medical Center 312-6132 (C)
Books on Tap - 7:30-8:30 p.m. Adults. Read a book and try a new brew. Commonwealth Brewery 305-9652 (VB)
Tom Brokaw Live - 7:30 p.m. Presented by the Norfolk Forum. ($) Chrysler Hall 664-6464 (N)
Jack Johnson in Concert - 7:30 p.m. ($) Veterans United Home Loans Amphitheater 800-745-3000 (VB)
Business Funding Expose - 8:45 a.m.-noon. Learn about business financing and funding. RR ($) ODU Innovation Research Park II, 4211 Monarch Way 410-4678 (N)
Bridge (Young Professionals) Luncheon - 12-1 p.m. Learn about professional development. RR ($) Va. Peninsula Chamber, 21 Enterprise Pkwy 262-2000 (H)
Ocean Friendly Gardening - 1-3 p.m. Gardening for cleaner coasts and oceans. RR ($) Norfolk Botanical Garden 441-5830 (N)
Business Connection After Hours - 5-7 p.m. Spon. by Va. Peninsula Chamber. RR Bonaventure Realty Group, LLC, 600 Freeman Dr. 262-2000 (H)
Acrylic Painting Workshop - 6-8:30 p.m. Learn the basics. RR ($) Norfolk Botanical Garden 441-5830 (N)
Fall Lecture Series - 7 p.m. Film screening and discussion of “Tidewater.” ($) Mariners’ Museum 596-2222 (NN)
Peanut Fest Queen’s Banquet - 7 p.m. Dinner, Silent Auction, entertainment, and crowning of the queen. RR ($) Hilton Garden Inn, 100 E. Constance Rd. 539-6751 (S)
Garden Stars - 8-9:30 p.m. w/ Back Bay Astronomers. RR ($) Norfolk Botanical Garden 441-5830 (N)
Movie Night: “Star Wars: The Force Awakens” - 6 p.m. Incl. activities. Mt. Trashmore 385-2990 (VB)
Dan & Shay in Concert - 8 p.m. ($) Portsmouth Pavilion 393-8181 (P)
Va. Opera: “Samson and Delilah” - 8 p.m. Times vary thru 10/3. The Israelite warrior is thrust into the arms of the Philistine seductress who ultimately betrays him. ($) Harrison Opera House 623-1223 (N)
Peanut Fest Parade - 10 a.m. Downtown Suffolk 539-6751 (S)
Yorktoberfest - 11:30 a.m.-4:30 p.m. Food, music, vendors, and cars! ($) HR Harley-Davidson, 6450 George Washington Memorial Hwy. 877-5920 (Y)
Chesapeake Sheriff’s Pull for Pink - 12-4 p.m. Wild Wing Café www.brahaha.org, 312-3000 (C)
Khedive Swashbucklers’ “6th Ever” Pig Pickin’ - 2-5 p.m. Food, door prizes, auctions, activities, and more. ($) Khedive Temple Greenbrier, 645 Woodlake Dr. 420-4510 (C)
Hampton Arts 30th Birthday Gala - 8 p.m. Fundraising event features Megan Hilty, dinner, drinks, dancing and birthday cake. RR ($) American Theatre 896-1241 (H)
Please call to confirm. ($) Fee; RR - Reservations Req’d
(C) Chesapeake (H) Hampton (N) Norfolk
(NN) Newport News (P) Portsmouth
(S) Suffolk (VB) Va. Beach (W) W’burg
Want to make a bigger splash? Advertise your upcoming event in Tidewater Women. Call 757-204-4688 and ask about our affordable rates.
These days the dollar doesn’t go very far. But Taylor Swift just increased its value exponentially. What this young super star did for women will hopefully be seen as the beginning of the end of women having to silently bear the indignities often committed against them. I’m sure you’ve heard about her case involving a male DJ who thought it would be acceptable for him to “cop a feel” of this young woman’s bottom. After all, what are women for?
Ms. Swift’s reaction to this assault is in stark contrast to those women who allege they were assaulted by a once revered Bill Cosby. Approximately 50 women felt so intimidated and fearful that they kept silent, some for almost 50 years. If you’re a woman, you more than likely have experienced some form of sexual assault. Whether, physically or verbally, you have most likely been accosted by some man who thought it would be funny or fun to grope you. How did you feel when that happened? What did you do? Who did you tell?
Depending on your age and your upbringing, your answers to those questions may range anywhere from I ran and hid and told no one to I kicked him in the b***s and let him know his advances weren’t welcome. Hopefully, it was closer to the latter.
When Taylor Swift filed a lawsuit and asked for one dollar as compensation, she sent a message to the world that women are no longer willing to keep their mouths shut. It is never acceptable for a man to grope a woman.
If you have been or are in a situation where unwanted advances are making you feel uncomfortable, here are a few tips on how to handle it:
1. Speak up. You are never required to keep your mouth shut. If you fear losing your job or having your career affected in a negative way, there are laws in place that are meant to keep that from happening. You will have to let people know what happened. And, if it comes to that, you will have to testify in court. But you have a right to stand up for yourself.
2. Never allow the abuser to make you feel guilty. You did not ask for it. You are not there to be a play toy and you do not have to deal with his advances. Whether in a work situation or in any other aspect of your life, you deserve respect. Stand your ground and firmly say no.
3. Often a man will tell you he had “no choice.” You made him act that way. No, he chose to act that way. And he can choose to be more respectful. You can choose to demand respect. That’s not an easy thing when you’ve never done it before. But you can learn to value yourself enough to firmly refuse his advances.
4. What if it’s your husband who is the abuser? Aren’t you required to put up with it? Doesn’t he have a right to expect you to be there for him? Again, no. It’s your body and you get to decide who touches it.
5. Most importantly, if you find yourself in a situation where a man is making you feel uncomfortable either by his language or his actions, and you don’t feel strong enough to handle it on your own, please seek help. Whether that means calling the police or getting in touch with a support network or therapist, get support. If it’s severe enough, get away from him. If he doesn’t treat you with respect, he isn’t someone you need in your life. For any reason.
This is a new era. Women have been fighting for years to be recognized as worthwhile citizens deserving of respect and of being treated with dignity. Fortunately, Taylor Swift, a “thoughtful, committed citizen,” has paved the way and sent a loud and clear message that we’re not willing to take it anymore.
Julie Holly, CEG, is a Life Vision & Empowerment Coach. For information, email julie@innerradiancecoaching or call 804-246-1509.
Julie is offering a free workbook for Tidewater Women readers to help you clarify your goals in life. Download it here: innerradiancecoaching.com/wp-content/uploads/2017/08/Create-Your-Ideal-Life-A-Practical-Guide.pdf
Sleep deprivation has become quite an issue in today’s fast-paced and wired world. From sleep lab research to new drugs hitting the market almost daily, it is obvious that sleep issues affect many people. One solution that many of my students have found helpful is to practice Chi Gung as a part of their pre-bed routine.
Typically, these ancient exercises are known for increasing and revving up your energy system, but that is only part of their function. The more important function can be the balancing of the nervous system and the release of nervous tension, especially for individuals that have difficulty falling asleep.
True, learning a Chi Gung set does take a bit of effort, but once acquired, it becomes an invaluable tool over the course of a lifetime. To give an example close to home, my wife Lauren is a born worrier, to the extent that this impacted her ability to sleep for years. Luckily (for both of us), years ago I taught her a specific form of Chi Gung called Dragon and Tiger. After each session Lauren felt sleepy and thought she was doing something wrong as she had heard that Chi Gung was supposed to energize a person. I explained that that energy boost usually comes from balancing the nerves rather than overtly stimulating them. In her case, the nerves needed to rest, and Dragon/Tiger’s calming effect achieved that. To this day, Lauren uses Chi Gung as an easy, gentle aid to sleep.
Learning a basic balancing Chi Gung set—such as Dragon and Tiger—can be done in a weekend workshop. In the meantime, here’s a simple tool that may be useful.
Anyone that has had children knows that rocking helps soothe a child. Some even say it mimics the sensation of being in the womb. Whatever the reason, the results of this overlooked yet simple tool are incontrovertible.
In Chi Gung training we use our body weight focused on certain parts of the feet to create upward and downward flows of chi, or life energy. These flows have an effect on the entire body, including the nervous system. When pressure is put upon the ball of the foot, there is a natural upward stimulation effect. And when a person shifts weight onto the heel of the foot, a natural downward flow is generated. In essence, this practice is rocking yourself to sleep while standing up.
Place both feet on the floor and let yourself settle as you stand. Be aware of your feet. Feel your toes. Sense each one separately. Notice how one foot connects to the floor. Then compare that to the other foot.
Begin to shift your weight from your heels to the balls of your feet. Remember, this is supposed to be an exercise that has a nurturing and relaxing quality. Leave the gym/go-for-the-burn mindset for the morning.
As you play with this simple exercise, notice what is happening in your body and if there are any locations where you are holding on to tension. More often than not, most people find—like the proverbial forgotten pencil behind the ear—there are places with tension that you have not previously been aware of. Use this exercise to locate stress and release it in those regions.
For individuals with balance issues, you can place one foot in front of the other or use a chair for support. The important element is to use your weight to stimulate the heels and balls of the feet.
Like anything other skill or technique, there are more refined ways to do this exercise and more comprehensive methods to learn, such as the full set of Dragon and Tiger Chi Gung. But I encourage anyone with sleep issues to try this exercise for a week and see what happens. I’m confident you will be pleasantly surprised with the results.
Aaron Green is a Certified Senior Instructor of Bruce Kumar Frantzis, a Daoist lineage holder, and founder of the Energy Arts system. Having found these practices to be a superior method of self-cultivation, Aaron teaches Chi Gung and Tai Chi to groups and individuals that are interested in taking an active role in their personal health and well being. For more information, visit appliedenergyarts.weebly.com.
Values and opinions guide our lives and give us rules for living. Usually we pick up our values in childhood from our families, blindly swallowing other people’s opinions without question. Many of us graduate to adulthood still following these hand-me-down beliefs. But without questioning and developing our own values and opinions, we can’t become full-fledged grown-ups who can think for ourselves.
How do you feel about expressing your values and opinions? For many people, they don’t think twice about pushing their thoughts and beliefs on others, never questioning the absolute truth of what they are saying. But more self-reflective individuals may hesitate to speak up about the code they live by, for fear of rejection or reprisal. They may even doubt their own opinions or be ambivalent about the values that could put them into conflict with others. These people may have been raised in a parental atmosphere where rigid, emotionally immature authority figures did not allow free thought or standing up for oneself. In this way children learn to feel unentitled to their own opinion or shy away from speaking up about what matters to them.
Emotionally immature parents impose their values and opinions in a coercive way, sending the message you are bad if you don’t totally agree with them. Their rigid opinions and moral values maintain control over family members by discouraging any discussion or questions. But these emotionally immature parents’ values and opinions may not reflect what you now know in your adult experience to be true. Their concepts of what’s important in life don’t necessarily fit who you are now. When this happens, you may experience emotional conflict as you struggle to keep up a relationship with them at the cost of your authentic feelings.
So what happens if you point out that an emotionally immature parental value or opinion is inconsistent or doesn’t make sense? What happens when you think for yourself or set your own priorities and values? The emotionally immature parent typically will shut you down with anger, shaming, or emotional rejection. This leaves you in a state of moral confusion wherein strong but irrational parental opinions struggle against your secret realization that those beliefs can’t be true. At the very least, you might feel like a bad person for not valuing ideas and behaviors that the parent very much believes in.
Much adult anxiety and depression has its roots in deeply held, but unexamined parental values and opinions that operate against a person’s mental health. You might still hold rigid opinions from childhood that cause needless problems in your adult relationships or honor values that wear you out in unhealthy, unbalanced efforts to please other people. You might never think to question a self-defeating value by asking yourself, “Is this true?”
If you sometimes feel depressed and lacking in confidence, it may be a sign you are ready to begin actively questioning some of the hand-me-down beliefs you grew up with. The point is to construct solid, consciously chosen values and opinions that you feel good living by. Questioning outdated values and narrow opinions from your childhood is empowering, especially if these beliefs are causing unnecessary anxiety and low self-esteem.
The next time you feel conflicted or down on yourself, ask what underlying values are making you feel that way. For instance, are you valuing work and busyness over time to replenish your energies? Are you of the opinion that other people’s needs should always take precedence over your own? The next step is to question whether that belief makes sense for your healthiest life. This is especially so if the value begins with, “You should always…”
As an adult, you can decide what makes sense to you, based on your life experience. You can adopt conscious values that are kinder and more self-supportive. You can be of the opinion that you are worthy of consideration, too. For example, if you were mistreated or neglected in childhood, you can now form an opinion about that and consciously set a new value about being treated well. It is incredibly freeing to look at an inherited belief and declare it wrong according to your current adult values.
If you don’t do the emotional work of forming an opinion about how you were treated in your family, it can be much harder to take yourself seriously as an adult. It’s up to you to update values about the type of relationships you want and how you want other people to treat you. Deliberately forming opinions about right behavior allows you to be consciously guided by a set of values that matches who you really are. As an adult, you now get to decide if old beliefs have been good for you or not. Start living by your own opinions and values and watch the lift in your energy, health, and well being.
Preterm and premature mean the same thing—early. Preterm labor is labor that begins early, before 37 weeks of pregnancy. Labor is the process your body goes through to give birth to your baby. Preterm labor can lead to premature birth. Premature birth is when your baby is born early, before 37 weeks of pregnancy. Your baby needs about 40 weeks in the womb to grow and develop before birth. About 1 in 10 babies is born prematurely each year in the United States.
The earlier in pregnancy a baby is born, the more likely he or she is to have health problems. Some premature babies have to spend time in a hospital’s neonatal intensive care unit (also called NICU). This is the part of a hospital that takes care of sick newborns. But thanks to advances in medical care, even babies born very prematurely are more likely to survive today than ever before. Premature babies may need to stay in the hospital longer than babies born later. They also may have long-term health problems that can affect their whole lives.
There are major risk factors that can increase the risk for premature delivery. They are having a history of premature delivery in the past, being pregnant with multiples, and having problems with the uterus or cervix during pregnancy or in the past. Some of the lesser risk factors can include being underweight or overweight before pregnancy, getting pregnant again too soon after having a baby, getting late or no prenatal care, not gaining enough weight during pregnancy, bleeding from the vagina in the second or third trimester, having certain health conditions or infections such as high blood pressure, preeclampsia, diabetes or thrombophilias, being pregnant after in vitro fertilization, and being pregnant with a baby who has certain birth defects.
In addition, there are some risk factors that occur in our everyday life that can cause preterm labor and premature birth. Smoking, drinking alcohol, using street drugs or abusing prescription drugs, having a lot of stress in your life, low income, being unemployed or having little support from family and friends, being single, domestic violence whether it is physical, sexual or emotional abuse, working long hours or having to stand a lot, and being exposed to harmful chemicals. Most of these risk factors can be managed or changed in order to reduce the risk of preterm labor.
Others, such as age and race, can increase our chances of having preterm labor and premature birth. Being younger than 17 or older than 35 makes you more likely than other women to give birth early. In the United States, black women are more likely to give birth early. Almost 17 percent of black babies are born prematurely each year. Just more than 10 percent of Native American and Hispanic babies are born early, and fewer than 10 percent of white and Asian babies. We don’t know why race plays a role in premature birth. Researchers are working to learn more about it.
You can reduce your risk for preterm labor and premature birth by not smoking, drinking alcohol, using street drugs, or abusing prescription drugs. Make sure to go to your first prenatal care checkup as soon as you think you are pregnant. Going to all of your prenatal visits even if you are feeling fine is important. It helps your provider make sure that you and your baby are healthy. Get treated for chronic health conditions, like high blood pressure, diabetes, depression, and thyroid problems. Protect yourself from infections by washing hands with soap and water after using the bathroom or blowing your nose, avoid eating raw meat, raw fish or raw eggs, have safe sex, and don’t change the cat litter box. Get to a healthy weight before pregnancy and gain the right amount of weight during pregnancy. Reduce your stress. Eat healthy foods and do something active every day. And finally, wait at least 18 months between giving birth and getting pregnant again.
What are the signs and symptoms of preterm labor? Change in your vaginal discharge (watery, mucus, or bloody) or more vaginal discharge than usual, pressure in your pelvis or lower belly, like your baby is pushing down, constant low, dull backache, belly cramps with or without diarrhea, regular or frequent contractions that make your belly tighten like a fist, or your water breaks. If you experience any of these symptoms before 37 weeks of pregnant, you should contact your health care provider.
There are treatments that can help stop preterm labor. Progesterone injections weekly from 16 to 36 weeks and sometimes vaginal suppositories can stop/reduce preterm labor. Chemicals called tocolytics may also help slow or stop preterm labor. They are given in a hospital setting. When you see your provider, he or she may do a pelvic exam or an ultrasound to see if your cervix has started to thin out and open for labor. If you’re having contractions, your provider monitors them to see how strong and far apart they are. You may get other tests to help your provider find out if you really are in labor.
The best treatment for preterm labor and premature delivery is preventing it. Make sure you contact your provider if you have any changes during your pregnancy. Early diagnosis and early intervention could have positive effects on stopping or slowing preterm labor and premature delivery.
Melissa Waddell, WHNP, is a nurse practitioner at Atlantic Ob/Gyn located in Va. Beach and Chesapeake. Visit www.atlanticobgyn.com.
If you’ve never been to Arizona’s Sonoran Desert, you might think it’s empty, barren, and hotter than blazes. But on my first morning ride at White Stallion Ranch just outside Tucson, the desert is vibrant and alive—and surprisingly cool. We’re walking in the shadow of a mountain, and ambient sunlight gilds the cacti in auras of gold, orange, and pink. Birds flit about as our horses clip-clop along the trail. I take a deep breath and inhale the herbaceous smells of the desert. I am in my element.
Whenever I visit the Southwest, I feel a strange kinship to the land, as if I belong here. In spite of the desert’s tranquil appearance, there’s a palpable sense of energy in the ancient landscape—the mountains, the desert, the canyons, and gorges, shaped by forces we can’t even comprehend, forces that are still at work. It’s hard not to feel awe.
Peter and I are here in Arizona for an 11-day vacation, and our itinerary is packed with all the activities I love: horseback riding, hikes, museum visits, gardens, history, nature, and delicious food and wine. Our trip will take us from Arizona’s southern side through Phoenix, one of my favorite cities, then northward, where we’ll visit Sedona’s Red Rocks and the iconic Grand Canyon. Along the way we’ll experience some of the best of what Arizona has to offer and reconnect with our ancient roots in this awe-inspiring state.
Here’s Part 1 of our adventure. Saddle up the palomino, and come along for the ride.
IN THE DESERT
The current owners of White Stallion Ranch, the True family, have been welcoming guests since 1965. I love it from the minute we arrive. Set among palm trees, like an oasis in the desert, the ranch can accommodate up to 100 guests in a variety of accommodations. While not a luxury property, it’s definitely a step up from rustic dude ranches with its spacious, updated guestrooms and suites—plus a 4-bedroom house for groups and family gatherings. Amenities include a pool, fitness center, hot tub, and a cozy bar where you can meet other guests before dinner. Our darling casita features wood paneling and Southwest decor, and we even have a patio with an outdoor fireplace and comfy chaise lounges, perfect for stargazing at night.
Whether you are a beginner or an experienced rider, I can’t think of a better place to get in touch with your inner cowgirl than White Stallion. The True family has made it their mission to provide a quality experience for guests, and the ranch runs like a well-oiled machine. Each afternoon in the main lodge, guests sign up for the rides they wish to join the next day. Most days options include a slow and a fast ride. Other rides offered regularly include a breakfast ride, all-day ride, wine-and-cheese ride, and beer-and-Cheetos ride. Cattle wrangling, rodeos, and cookouts are also part of the fun.
Don’t worry if you’ve never ridden or if it’s been ages since you sat in a saddle. White Stallion’s wranglers will match you with the perfect horse. I’m assigned to Stetson, and she’s gentle yet responsive. Our morning ride is a slow ride, required for all first-time guests. Slow simply means your horse walks the whole way—ideal for getting used to being in the saddle and waking up your muscles. Plus ambling along on horseback reminds you to slow down, breathe, and connect to the beauty of nature.
White Stallion Ranch is adjacent to the Saguaro National Park), and tall Saguaro cacti dot the ranch, like still-life statues watching the world go by. But other species of cacti also abound. One of my favorites is called the Teddy Bear Cholla. From a distance the cactus appears to be covered in fluffy, white down, but when you get close, you discover it’s full of spiky thorns. Not sure where the name comes from since you definitely would not want to hug one of these Teddy Bears.
After our relaxing morning ride, we are ready for a fast ride, available for more experienced riders. Peter and I have ridden a fair amount, but I’m still nervous as we mount up. Before taking off, you need to pass a test—i.e., show that you can canter confidently in a fenced-in arena. So I do my best to cue Stetson into a canter, and she glides into a nice, easy lope under the wrangler’s watchful eye. I’m bouncing in the saddle a bit, but I get a thumb’s up—and Peter does, too, so we are off and running.
Not really. The fast ride isn’t just running. It’s a series of walks and canters through the desert. Each time we get ready to canter, the lead wrangler says, “Is everybody ready?” The horses are so habituated to the routine, you don’t even have to give them a cue. They start running before the words are out of the wrangler’s mouth! We canter along mostly straight stretches of trail in single file. The challenge is to find the horse’s rhythm and keep your distance from the other horses—easier said than done since horses run at different speeds.
I’m still learning to canter, so I’m out of rhythm at times. Stetson is forgiving, luckily, and soon I figure out how to ease her into a slow canter and slow her down when she picks up her pace. The canters last a minute or two at most, and when we slow down to a walk, my heart is racing and I’m smiling like nobody’s business.
THE RIDING BUG
Meals are served family-style in the dining room, and the food is hearty and plentiful. Our first evening the dinner theme is Italian, so there’s fabulous lasagna, spaghetti, and ravioli. A cowboy breakfast is on tap the next morning featuring steak and eggs—perfect for a day in the saddle. What’s great about family-style meals is meeting the other guests, some of whom have been coming to White Stallion for years. In fact, Susanne, the ranch’s marketing director, says 65 percent of guests are return visitors. That’s amazing.
We meet Guenter, a retired dentist from Austria, his wife, Sylvie, and their niece, Elise. I happen to be reading a book called The Perfect Horse about how Austria’s Lipizanner stallions were kept safe during WWII, and Guenter tells us he met the director of Vienna’s Spanish Riding School, a main character in the saga, when he was a boy. Small world! We also meet a couple from Canada, a father and daughter from the UK, and two couples from Florida, who come every year after having been bitten by the riding bug. They now own horses back home and love their new hobby—all thanks to a vacation at White Stallion.
Each evening activities are offered. Our first night it’s line dancing, which is a hoot. I have two left feet, so it takes me a while to follow Megan’s instructions: Step to the left. Step to the right. Heel, heel, touch, tap, hitch. That last move is a quarter turn, and I’m either a few beats behind or “hitching” in the wrong direction. Megan also teaches us a barn dance, which involves changing partners after you do a series of simple steps plus a twirl. We are laughing a mile a minute, especially since some of us can’t keep up with the music’s tempo. Other nightly activities include stargazing, arts and crafts, and cowboy songs around a campfire.
On the second day at White Stallion, Peter and I challenge ourselves by signing up for the all-day ride. We head out after breakfast—along with two wranglers and another couple who we discover have ridden horses around the world—and follow a trail into Saguaro National Park. The scenery is stunning. We ride through canyons and gorges, past giant boulders, through dry riverbeds, up and down mountains, stopping for a midday lunch in a shady ramada. Yes, it might be January here in southern Arizona, but the temperatures climb into the 80s, and under a blazing sun, it’s pretty darn hot. Wide-brimmed hats are recommended.
The wranglers show us petroglyphs on boulders in the park, markings left behind by the prehistoric Hohokam people, which experts say may be thousands of years old. The Hohokam created petroglyphs by etching designs into the dark surface of sandstone and other rocks. For being so old and weathered, the spirals and squiggly lines are surprisingly vivid on the boulders. No one knows the significance of the markings. Maybe they were used to communicate—or perhaps someone just felt like creating a pretty design on the side of a rock.
We do a little cantering during the ride, but mostly we walk through the desert, sometimes chatting, other times quiet, alone with our thoughts. It’s in these moments that I feel glad to be alive and far, far away from the noise and stimulation of the modern world. Escaping into nature matters now more than ever. When we take the time to slow down and reconnect with what’s real in the world, we remember what life’s all about.
I guess you can tell I’ve been bitten by the riding bug, and even though it’s been a few months since we visited White Stallion Ranch, I only need to close my eyes to remember how alive I felt there. I hope one day to ride again through the Sonoran Desert on the back of a horse. It can’t happen soon enough.
White Stallion Ranch offers all-inclusive vacations year round, as well as workshops, clinics, seasonal discounts, and special packages—like Cactus Cowgirls, which is offered four times a year. The next cowgirl gathering is January 14-21, 2018. Visit www.whitestallion.com or call 520-297-0252 for more information.
NEARBY IN TUCSON
• Arizona-Sonora Desert Museum - The Arizona-Sonora Desert Museum is a world-renowned zoo, natural history museum, and botanical garden featuring interpretive displays of living animals and plants native to the Sonoran Desert region. This fab family attraction has been teaching visitors about the desert since 1952. Dine in the museum’s café—it’s affordable and tasty! www.desertmuseum.org
• Mission San Xavier Del Bac - Known as the White Dove of the Desert, this Catholic mission built in 1783 just outside Tucson is considered one of the best examples of Spanish Colonial architecture in the U.S. The interior and exterior are both breathtaking, and the story of the church is a fascinating insight into the history of this region. www.patronatosanxavier.org
• Old Tucson - Old Tucson is one of Arizona’s top Wild West attractions, featuring live-action stunt shows and live entertainment, vintage rides for the kids, genuine southwest BBQ, stagecoach rides, and more. Immortalized in 400+ films and commercial productions, Old Tucson continues to serve as a premiere film location. Perfect for anyone who’s a fan of westerns! www.oldtucson.com
• Tucson Botanical Gardens - The Tucson Botanical Gardens is an urban oasis of five-plus acres with 16 specialty gardens that surround visitors with beauty and inspiration. Families will love the seasonal, live tropical Butterfly Exhibit, Butterfly Magic. Don’t miss dining at Café Botanica, which features local, sustainable ingredients. www.tucsonbotanical.org
Coming Soon: Parts 2 & 3 of Peggy’s Arizona adventures.