In brief: Wegmans frenzy, costume don’ts and more

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Election prank calls

Residents in Louisa have reported phone calls in which the caller asks who they are voting for in the presidential election, and depending on which candidate they indicate, might tell them their polling place has been moved. It is unclear whether the voters are hoping to sway Hillary Clinton or Donald Trump backers, but the registrar said no voting precincts have changed.

Crystal ball

UVA Center for Politics’ Larry Sabato announced Monday his final Crystal Ball predictions, which called for a victory for Hillary Clinton with 322 electoral college votes, followed by 216 for Trump. Sabato also predicted a 50-50 Senate with a GOP-led House of Representatives.

UVA student charged with false report

According to the Cav Daily, first-year Thomas Shaw’s report of an October 29 robbery by a knife-wielding, white plastic Halloween mask-wearing mugger who took his wallet and ring led to a University Police charge for filing a false report, and could bring an Honor Committee investigation.

In the ‘what were they thinking?’ category

r.e. lee hs
The News Leader

Robert E. Lee High School principal Mark Rowicki and secretary Stephanie Corbett dressed as Donald Trump and an orange prison jump-suited Hillary Clinton, respectively, in Staunton on Halloween. Parental outrage ensued and the photos on the school website were replaced with a  notice from school superintendent Linda Reviea that called the choice of costumes “in poor judgment.”

Ike’s reopens

The vintage clothing store on the Downtown Mall that was damaged by an electrical fire June 29 opened for business again last week.

Wegmans wonderland

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A new day dawns in the parking lot of Wegmans at 5th Street Station. Matteus frankovich/skyclad AP

Ranked No. 5 on Forbes’ list of America’s Best Employers this year, the 120,000-square-foot supermarket opened its doors to a long line of grocery fanatics at 7am on Sunday, November 6, and 23,000 people flocked there that day. With a giant rooster cuckoo clock that cock-a-doodle-doos on the hour and a train set chugging along a track suspended from the ceiling, the Wegmans at 5th Street Station is the company’s 92nd to open in the U.S.

We bet you didn’t know:

  • The chain began as a modest food cart called the Rochester Fruit and Vegetable Company in 1916 and is basking in its centennial celebration.
  • Carrying some products from its own farm in Rochester, New York, the store also sells regional products, such as beef from Senterfitt Farms in Madison County.
  • The Pub, a sit-down restaurant, has a full menu with five local beers on tap, and the grab-and-go Market Café offers indoor and outdoor seating for 250 people.
  • About 65,000 products are available, including 1,000 different SKUs of beers, 700 fresh produce items, hundreds of imported and domestic cheeses and a seafood market with whole fish delivered from around the world daily. Lest we forget, 56 varieties of cookies are baked daily.

PEARLS OF WISDOM

First Lady Dorothy McAuliffe supports the second annual Virginia Oyster Month at Public Fish & Oyster. Photo: Rammelkamp Foto
First Lady Dorothy McAuliffe celebrates the second annual Virginia Oyster Month at Public Fish & Oyster. Photo: Rammelkamp Foto

“R” months don’t mean much anymore for oyster consumption, but November is officially Virginia Oyster Month, and that means all you can eat from the commonwealth’s eight oyster regions. Salty? Buttery? Sweet? Virginia apparently has ’em all. The state launched an Oyster Trail in 2015, which has spurred agritourism, and now shore-to-table is a thing. In fact, Governor Terry McAuliffe has proclaimed Virginia the “oyster capital of the East Coast.”

  • Oysters are a nearly $34 million industry in Virginia
  • More than 135 million were planted in 2015

Quote of the week

“We’re experiencing history here. It’s awesome.”—30-year poll worker JoAnn Perkins says about the unprecedented turnout at Crozet Elementary on Election Day.