Fluvanna Review

Chris VanSlooten, FUMA aquatics director.More than 2,000 swimmers and their families are coming to Fork Union for two days of racing this weekend.

Fork Union Military Academy is opening its doors to the Jefferson Swim League for its annual swim championship July 27 and 28, said Chris VanSlooten, FUMA aquatics director. Add a comment

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The newly opened Panda Chinese restaurant has a lot going for it, food-wise that is. If you’re one of the ones looking for décor and ambiance, Chinese red walls and gold Oriental fans, that is not what Panda is all about. The restaurant offers take-out, a few tables set up for eating in, and catering for small or large parties. It is a place for the true Chinese food lover.

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Coach Michele Caron (left) and her assistants brief the Sharks.The Lake Monticello Swim Team defeated the Key West Swim Club by a score of 378-306 on Wednesday (July 18). The meet was held at the Key West neighborhood pool. First year head coach, Michelle Caron said that her team of over 100 youth swimmers has not lost a meet this year, and this was the team’s sixth and final swim meet of the regular season.

Caron, who is a rising junior and varsity swimmer at Bridgewater University, is well known for her swimming prowess. She won the Lake Monticello Fourth of July lake swim repeatedly while she was swimming for the Flucos.

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“Carpenters for Christ” is a group which sends out teams of carpenters to various churches to help with construction projects. Photo by Tricia JohnsonAround 80 volunteers arrived at Beulah Baptist Church on June 6 to help build a new sanctuary and fellowship hall for the church – in just one week.
The volunteers are part of a program called “Carpenters for Christ” – a group which sends out teams of carpenters to various churches to help with construction projects. This particular team is based in Glen Church in Glen St. Mary, Florida, but the volunteers come from 12 different churches in five states. All of them will call Beulah Baptist Church home for the next week.
“God calls us once a year to serve a local church that is growing and bursting at the seams,” explained Eric Raulerson, the team leader. “We want to come build something for them so they can keep right on growing! “ The sanctuary and fellowship hall will add 7,000 square feet of space.
Why would these men give up their vacation time, sleep on cots and eat food prepared in a church kitchen for a week each year? “God has been so good to us,” said Raulerson. “He saved us and he has given us a purpose in life. This is one of our purposes in life. He’s been so good to us and we can’t wait to find ways to serve him, and that is why we are here,” he added.
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Austins getaway. Photo by Tricia JohnsonIn a sense it could be any children’s baseball game. It is a sunny Saturday morning, and the sound of children laughing and adults talking mingles with the ring of metal bats. One child stands on the pitcher’s mound, ball in hand. Another plants both feet at the plate and angles the bat back over his shoulder and a third is staring at the infield dirt, studying the footprints his shoes have left.
Just another kids’ baseball game.
Except it isn’t. There are no teams (there are not enough participants), and while one child is three– another is 15. The parents are on the field with their children, and the coach wanders from child to child, a perpetual smile on his face. This is a different baseball; maybe, in some ways, a better baseball. A baseball where the joy of hitting the ball isn’t immediately lost in the urgency of a headlong race to first base. Where everyone celebrates a good throw. Where one mother, each time her son makes it to another base, picks him up and spins him in circles. This is Buddy Ball.
Four of the players have special needs.
Two of them – brothers – don’t. They volunteer to help the players run bases, bat, or throw.
The special needs players, and the typical kids, are buddies.
Landon is at bat. The little blond-haired boy shuffles his feet in the box and lays the bat on his right shoulder. He looks around to make sure everyone is watching, then wiggles his behind, and joins in the outburst of laughter from the adults, shouting his joy to the perfect blue sky with abandon. Minutes later, a swing connects and his mouth opens wide in an amazed smile and he drops the bat and jumps up and down with excitement. No one seems to mind that he forgets to run to first base. It doesn’t matter. Not at all.
Austin is dark haired and quiet; a tall, thin, ten-year-old boy with an otherworldly air. He and his father play an endless game of tag on the infield; Austin gets his hands on a ball and wants to keep it; he and his father play the game until his father catches him, laughing, and gets the ball back. They both seem to enjoy the back and forth. For a while he finds a spare ball, and stands on the pitcher’s mound with it, looking towards home plate. He is thinking deep thoughts, I can tell, but I cannot ask Austin what he thinks or feels: he is autistic, and non-verbal. His dark eyes are beautiful – especially when he smiles; a shy, sidelong grin. He likes to bunt the ball.
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