Rebecca Bowyer

Becky Blanton became homeless by choice 10 years ago, but she didn’t realize the societal
and psychological ramifications she would experience. Today Blanton wants to help others in the same situation. Photo by Keith Alan Sprouse

New program guides homeless in starting their own businesses

Becky Blanton became invisible 10 years ago. She shared her story—how she went from working as a newspaper editor to living out of her van and eventually identifying as homeless—with her fellow entrepreneurs in a Community Investment Collaborative program in the fall of 2015. CIC runs a 16-week program for local entrepreneurs in Charlottesville, as […]

Albemarle Schools’ Lindsay Snoddy demonstrates an identification scanner, a new addition to keep county school kids safe. Photo by Eze Amos

Safe and sound: New locks, ID scanners at county schools

Walking into an Albemarle County school, a parent may notice new security measures. Although some are subtle, others, like a new identification scanning system, are hard to miss. In an era in which deranged gunmen have been known to target school children, local administrators say they are working to make sure students and teachers are […]

Caleb Fox works at The Haven to get veterans housed.

eze amos

House calls: Finding shelter for local homeless vets

It’s been almost one year since Governor Terry McAuliffe announced that Virginia was the first state in the U.S. to functionally end homelessness among veterans—and while it may not seem that way when residents drive through Charlottesville and see people begging, evolving housing programs are having positive effects on the city and surrounding counties. Partnerships […]

Between 300 and 600 bears roam Shenandoah National Park each year. Park officials say a lack in food source has caused bear sightings, such as in picnic areas, to increase this summer.
Courtesy of Shenandoah National Park

Bear necessities: Sightings in Shenandoah National Park up this year

Although increased bear sightings this year in Shenandoah National Park are causing some visitors to worry, park officials are offering insight into why that’s happening, as the height of black bear activity winds down during the late summer months. Rolf Gubler, a wildlife biologist at the SNP, estimates there have been between 30 and 60 […]

Since 2011, Charlottesville police say there have been 10 reported criminal incidents on the Rivanna Trail. Three of those were attacks at Jordan Park, where this sign is located. Staff photo

Pay attention: Staying safe on the Rivanna Trail

By Rebecca Bowyer Within the last six months, there have been three reported cases of sexual assault along the Rivanna Trail in Charlottesville. The attacks have led some to wonder—just how safe is it to run, walk or hike the 20-mile trail? Although normally rare, attacks along some portions of the trail aren’t unheard of. […]

Even among the scorched earth at Rocky Mountain, signs of life have emerged in the
Shenandoah National Park. Photo by Rebecca Bowyer

Wildfire aftermath: Shenandoah’s path to rehabilitation

By Rebecca Bowyer When a visitor journeys up Skyline Drive and looks out over the portion of Shenandoah National Park recently ravaged by wildfire, black scars, charred trees and the smell of soot linger—but, almost unexpectedly, a majority of the area is green. The Rocky Mountain wildfire was first reported to park officials on April […]