Wednesday, January 28, 2009

F'burg Polar Plunge 2/7

From the website:

Are you willin' to be chillin'?? If so, please join in for the Wounded EOD Polar Bear Plunge!! Saturday, February 7, 2009, City Dock, Sophia Street - Fredericksburg, VA. More details to follow - look for registation, sponsorship forms, and additional information coming soon!! We look forward to seeing you there!

Polar Bear Plunge Flyer
Registration Form
Corporate Sponsors Form
Sponsorship Form
Accident Waiver Release of Liability Form

For that matter, why don't you get a group of friends, dress in some crazy costume, and come down and go for the best outfit award. As you can see from the pictures from last year, there were a variety of costumes!

Here is my post from this event last year:
Brrr... The Rappahannock is 41F

Images from 2008:

Saturday, January 24, 2009

2009 Marine Corps Historic Half set

We've known for some time that May 17th is going to bring the 2nd annual Marine Corps historic half marathon to Fredericksburg, VA. Registration is now open, but limited to the first 9000 registrations. To register, visit the official race website

Here are some important changes from last year. No running on canal path this year. To make up for the lost mile, the course changed a little bit in the college terrace area of town. Looks like there will be two doglegs out to William street this time. The course will also go around the back of MWH for the last major hill instead of using Sam Perry Blvd. It's still going to be the most challenging hill of the course.

For those that arrived at this page from outside the area, here are a few tips from last year:
1 - If traveling from DC/MD or points north on Friday afternoon, consider coming down 301 to RT3. Don't follow your GPS down I-95 on Friday afternoon unless you feel like being a commuter for the day.
2 - Don't push yourself too hard by driving down from north of about Dale City on the morning of the marathon. The city does a lot to support this activity, and you'll find more places to stay this year. Consider coming Friday night and staying through Sunday. It's an interesting city to explore. Most any of us bloggers will happily point you to our favorite spots around town.

Here are the road closures:
6:50 a.m. - 7:30 a.m. Carl D Silver Parkway (CDSP) southbound from Convention Center to Cowan Boulevard.
6:50 a.m. - 11:00 a.m. Traffic control point (TCP) at Fall Hill Avenue and CDSP.
6:50 a.m. - 8:00 a.m. Cowan Boulevard (eastbound) from CDSP to Keeneland Road.
7:00 a.m. - 8:05 a.m. Woodland, Keeneland and Westwood Roads from Cowan Blvd to Route 3.
7:05 a.m. - 8:10 a.m. Route 3 (westbound lanes) from Westwood Rd to William Street.
7:10 a.m. - 8:55 a.m. William Street (westbound) from Blue/Gray Parkway to Sunken Road.
7:10 a.m. - 8:35 a.m. Sunken Road northbound from William Street to Fitzhugh Street.
7:15 a.m. - 8:35 a.m. Fitzhugh Street between Sunken Road and Franklin Street.
7:15 a.m. - 8:35 a.m. Franklin Street between Fitzhugh and Madison Streets.
7:15 a.m. - 8:35 a.m. Madison Street between Franklin Street and Littlepage Street.
7:15 a.m. - 8:40 a.m. Littlepage Street between Madison and Grove Avenue.
7:15 a.m. - 8:40 a.m. Grove between Littlepage and Kenmore Avenue.
7:20 a.m. - 8:50 a.m. Kenmore Avenue between Grove and William Street.
7:30 a.m. - 9:00 a.m. William Street between Kenmore Avenue and Washington Avenue.
7:20 a.m. - 9:05 a.m. Washington Avenue between William Street and Maury Street.
7:20 a.m. - 9:10 a.m. Maury Street from Washington Avenue to Fall Hill Road.
7:25 a.m. - 9:10 a.m. Fall Hill Road/Canal Street from Maury to Princess Anne Street.
7:25 a.m. - 9:20 a.m. Prince Edward Street from Canal Road to William Street.
7:25 a.m. - 9:20 a.m. William Street between Prince Edward Street to Princess Anne Street.
7:25 a.m. - 9:20 a.m. Princess Anne Street between William Street and Charlotte Street.
7:25 a.m. - 9:20 a.m. Charlotte Street between Princess Anne and Caroline Streets.
7:30 a.m.- 9:50 a.m. Caroline Street between Charlotte and Van Buren Streets.
7:35 a.m. - 9:50 a.m. Amelia Street between Caroline Street and Sophia Street.
7:35 a.m. - 9:55 a.m. Sophia Street between Amelia Street and Pitt Street.
7:35 a.m. - 9:55 a.m. Riverside Drive from Woodford Street to Fall Hill Avenue.
7:35 a.m. - 10:00 a.m. Fall Hill from Riverside Drive to US Route 1.
7:40 a.m. - 10:15 a.m. US Route 1 (southbound) from Fall Hill to Mary Washington Boulevard.
7:40 a.m. - 10:20 a.m. Mary Washington Boulevard from Route 1 to Hospital Drive.
7:45 a.m. - 10:30 a.m. Hospital Drive from Mary Washington Boulevard to Cowan Boulevard.
7:20 a.m. - 10:50 a.m. Cowan Boulevard (westbound) from Hospital Drive to CDSP.
7:20 a.m. - 11:00 a.m. CDSP northbound from Cowan Boulevard to Fall Hill Avenue.

Here is a google terrain map of the course:

View Larger Map

Friday, January 23, 2009

Get Out and Eat More

<cross posted to>
Help the local economy, support your local restaurant. This week begins the 2009 restaurant week (actually a little longer than a week). From now until the end of Jan, you can experience lunch for $10.09 and dinner for $20.09 at many of your favorite dining establishments. Call it our local bailout. Call it a good time. The specialized menus are sure to delight. Last year we at at several, but the specials at Bistro seem to come to mind. We're going out tonight and the sample menu from Jake & Mikes looks particularly appealing to me.

Get your own special at any of the 12 venues:

Basil’s Italian Market and Pizzeria
Bistro Bethem
Blarney Stone Public House
Capital Ale House
Caroline Street Café
Jake and Mike’s
Kenmore Inn
kybecca Wine Bar & Shop
Poppy Hill Tuscan Kitchen

Visit the Visitor's Center website for more info.

To see sample menus, click here.

Sunday, January 18, 2009

Fredericksburg Inauguration Reception 1/20/09

From Fred2Blue:
Event: Grassroots Inauguration Reception Description: Come celebrate the inauguration of Barack Obama for the 44th President of the United States as we gather in Fredericksburg to celebrate all of the work grassroots supporters did to help change the course of history.
Time: Tuesday, January 20 from 5:30 PM - 8:30 PM
Location: Rappahannock Regional Library (Fredericksburg, VA)1201 Caroline StreetFredericksburg, VA 22401
Music: musicians scheduled to appear :
- - John Bachman,
- - Pete Mealey,
- - George Foster
- - Tres Seaver

– In addition to the musicans listed above, we will also have a new local group, the Hybrids, featuring Stephen Hu and Lowell Sale (from the Believers’), doing a rockabilly set.
Note: This is a grassroots event and attendees are asked to bring a “pot-luck” dish to share and to also bring a can of food which will be delivered to our local food bank.
Click here to sign up via … or send an email to …. space is limited to 120 participants

Fredericksburg Pub

Today Gail took me out to "The Fredericksburg Pub" for lunch. She had the pub burger, I had the bronzed fish sandwich. Both came with fries. I also added a Boddingtons (on tap) to the meal. This place is going to give other area restaurants a run for their money for the following reasons
a) Good pub fare
b) Fast service, I mean fast for everything, from getting our order, to bringing our drinks, to having the food in front of us.
c) Nice sized proportions and good prices
d) A Variety of flat screens showing football (American football) and football (soccer)
f) Attractive and unique uniforms

The F'burg Pub has a great architectural bar in the center, which is the focal point. In addition to the regular booths, they have an opening into a patio that will be open to the outside in the summer, but at the time is heated and closed in. It almost doubles the seating. The food was cooked wonderfully, and comes with a bar specialty, a fried pickel. We almost missed it in the pile of fries, but our waitress pointed it out and we both loved it.

On the service, we noticed on several occasions that the wait staff, servers, runners, everyone was working together to make sure we were taken care of quickly. We noticed a manager kick in at one point for a neighboring table.

The bar has not yet finished their cask system, so those wanting cask beer will have to wait a little longer. The selection of draught beers was adequate, but more interesting was the ability to get a nice sized flight tasting. Not only could you select a flight of beer or wine, you could also select any 3 ounce tastes 12yr or less Scotch ($18) or 3 tastes of bourbon ($14). Their menu excludes "local selections" of these flights, but that's still an interesting take on 'flights'.

We plan on heading back to The Fredericksburg Pub to try the deserts, after seeing the cheesecake at the table behind us.

Not being British, I'm not sure if the staff kilts are authentic, and I'm definitely curious if the miniskirts are typical of a British Pub. But rest assured, the place has good food and drink too.

That's the advantage of reviewing wonderfully run establishment like The Fredericksburg Pub, is you don't feel like the attractive uniforms are trying to distract from poor food or bad service. In this case it all adds to decor and feelings of drinking in a British corner PUB, with staff anxious to make you feel at home. Oh yes, and since this is a non-smoking environment, you will never leave smelling like a chimney. Lets hope that more area establishments take this cue.

Wednesday, January 14, 2009

Road to Salivation - Restaurant Week

2009 is off to a culinary bang! The 2009 Restaurant week is just around the corner. January 22nd - 31st you can dine at a dozen downtown locations for just $10.09 at lunch and $20.09 for dinner. The menues are typically similar the restaurants normal cuisine, but often the chefs take a little extra liberty with specializing items or trying something new.

From the 2008 visitfred website:

"food enthusiasts will be able to feast on three-course prix fixe meals for a fraction of the regular price. ... Several of the city's finest restaurants will be preparing special menus to showcase their house specialties during Fredericksburg Restaurant Week.

Fredericksburg's 40-block historic district features a variety of one-of-a-kind restaurants, where you'll often find the owner/chef in the kitchen preparing your meal. The Road to Salivation is the ideal time to taste-test the tempting delights found on menus throughout the city."

The 2009 writeup sounds delicious
Delight in sheer gastronomical bliss as you sample some of Fredericksburg’s best dishes. Slow braised beef short ribs with a grapefruit and fennel slaw and fingerling potatoes. SautĂ© of jumbo shrimp over lobster-enriched fried polenta.
Mahi filet with herbed risotto. Belgian chocolate Profiterole with Dulce de
Leche ice cream. In Fredericksburg, the flavor is as rich as the area’s history.
For a list of restuarants, visit this link.

Free Pottery! Empty Bowl Fundraiser, one of our favorites

It's that time of year, when one of our all time favorite fundraisers - The Empty Bowl. This is an annual even to benefit the Rappahannock Council on Domestic Violence, and it's absolutely delicious. For those that have never been, I strongly suggest you consider it to warm up your winter dining experience. The event remains a lasting memory, by filling your cupboard with a one-of-a-kind hand made pottery bowl. The fun of walking in the door and getting to pick out your own unique souvenir is matched only by the next decision of which soups to sample. Local restaurants, organizations, and soup chefs from around the area bring in a wide variety of soups, chilis, gumbos to fill your stomach. But leave space for desert!

Why we love this event? The food is great, the cause is wonderful, and the take home bowls are perfect conversations starters to tell others about this great event. We have friends that use them for parties, where no two people have the same bowl (they've been to several of these). See you there!

10th Annual Empty Bowl, hosted at the Fredericksburg Elks Lodge
New Date: February 8, 2009
Tickets: $40
Available at these locations:

RCDV Outreach Office
Liberty Town Arts Workshop
Sophia Street Studios
or call Kelly Sparr at 972.8357

Wednesday, January 7, 2009

River Park One Step Closer

As reported yesterday on the city beat blog, the city has finished purchasing the properties needed for the river front park. This was the first thing that got me interested in city politics. I envision a day when every week you can head downtown and stroll along the river, maybe catching a live band on friday nights, followed by dinner at one of our great restaurants. I want downtown to be a center for the region, drawing people from the city, Stafford and Spotsylvania. It could be the breakout location for local bands.

The articles report that we will have to wait a little longer due to limited park development funds at least they now own the properties.

Wonder and Mystery

Ed Jones, an editor at the FLS put a quote in his column today from his minister. We need to restore "Wonder and Mystery" to our lives.

Think about that for a minute. I think it's a great new years resolution. Where has our natural curiosity gone? I think I will try to remember this as I watch Bennett start to grow up this year.

Friday, January 2, 2009

Why I Won't Fly Airtran

Among other reasons such as sub par service. How many times have I gotten on a flight and bemoaned the lax security or dumb protocols that do nothing but provide an illusion of security? Rather than think this through, airtran and their prejudiced pilot just refused service to a doc and a lawyer and their families. I ask you, what would the response have been if it was a white guy in blue jeans?

Look as far back as this 05/06 story on boarding passes and yet nothing has really been changed.

I worry more about driving I95 to get to the airport, its still safer to fly!

Angry over Gas Tax Reporting

In today's FLS is an ap story about the gas tax. This article states the need to raise the gas tax because people drive less and drive more efficient! WTF! That is NOT the issue. The tax is fixed per gallon, so the revenue NEVER changes even as construction and maint costs have risen. Someone in the article states that the $105B needed in 2007 will grow to $134B by 2017. Duh, that's called inflation! They make like this shortfall is due to less gas being sold.

Yeah, fix the gas tax! Stop being idiots about it and make it a percent of sale! It is the closest gauge to the number of miles driven, which actually equates to maint requirements.

I also take issue with the end of the story where someone envisions a gps based logging system to track miles. There is no way to prevent privacy intrusion without also creating an easily hackable system. Let's see, spend billions on gps'ing every car vs fixing the existing gas tax that encourages buying more efficient vehicles? Its a no brainer.

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