Festival in the Park, graduations and more news today

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Here’s a look at some of the stories we’ll be following today as they make headlines in Southwest Virginia:

  • The City of Danville will celebrate its Fête dans le Parc. The three-day event celebrates the arts and unity in the community. Events include live music, rides, a movie in the park and more. It starts today from 4 p.m. to 8 p.m. and continues from 10 a.m. to 10 p.m. on Saturday and from 1 p.m. to 6 p.m. on Sunday.

  • A new restaurant in Buchanan will celebrate its grand opening this weekend. Garrett’s Bistro and Spirits also offers classic American fare along with vegetarian options. The restaurant is on Main Street and will be open Fridays, Saturdays, Mondays and Tuesdays from 11 a.m. to 7 p.m.

  • A Bedford County bus driver who was arrested after deputies said she was driving under the influence to work will be in court today. According to the sheriff’s office, a concerned parent reported to authorities that Kimberly Ricketts was acting suspiciously on her ride. Ricketts faces four counts, including felony child endangerment and a DUI.

  • There is a memorial service today for a therapy dog ​​who served as the national mascot for a local veterans group. We first introduced you to Powmia in 2017 when she was recognized by Roanoke’s Post 64, which is made up of former serving members of the 29th Infantry Division. Powmia was owned by a veteran and had been a certified therapy dog ​​since he was two years old. She visited hospitals and veterans centers and also performed military drills. The memorial service is at noon today at the VA Medical Center Chapel.
  • There’s a grand opening ceremony today for Micah’s Pantry at the Warm Hearth Village. Micah’s Pantry is a new store, centralizing items from Micah’s programs on the Warm Hearth Village campus. Over the past decade, these programs have grown to include shelf stable foods, personal care items, pet supplies and more. The programs allow income-eligible residents to buy what they need for free.

  • Today is the last day to give your opinion on a community needs assessment. The Southern Virginia Child Advocacy Center provides services in Franklin, Henry, Patrick, and Pittsylvania counties as well as Martinsville. The center seeks to better understand what the community identifies as important issues as it works to plan, develop and maintain services for children and families affected by violence.
  • Virginia Western Community College will hold its spring debut today. More than 430 students are expected, receiving nearly 800 degrees and diplomas. The keynote speaker is Dr. Glenn DuBois, outgoing Chancellor of the Virginia Community College System. The student speaker is Vera Morton, 67. She grew up in Farmville, where rather than desegregate, schools were closed when she was about to start kindergarten. They didn’t reopen until three years later and she was placed in third grade. Morton will graduate with honors with an associate’s degree in liberal arts.

  • Wytheville Community College will celebrate its graduates tomorrow. Nearly 400 graduates will receive 578 degrees, diplomas and certificates. Fifty-one high school students will graduate while preparing for their high school diploma.

  • Virginia Tech will celebrate the class of 2022. The university will award 5,549 bachelor’s degrees, including more than 3,100 graduates with honors. The most popular major this year is Business Information Technology, followed by Computer Science, Mechanical Engineering, and Human Nutrition, Food, and Exercise. Virginia Governor Glenn Youngkin will deliver the keynote address. Today’s opening ceremony begins at 8.30am at Lane Stadium.

  • Virginia Amateur Sports and Centra are partnering to provide free sports physical exams before the next school year. The clinic runs from 10 a.m. to 12:30 p.m. Saturday at the Jubilee Family Development Center in Lynchburg. The clinic will also offer soccer skills training and health and wellness information at 11 a.m.

  • If your phone number has an area code of 540, ten-digit mandatory dialing begins today. Local calls made using only the seven-digit phone number will not go through. Starting next month, newly issued phone numbers may have the new 826 area code.

  • The Republican City of Lynchburg Committee will hold a mass meeting today. Three people will be nominated to run for city council in November. If you are registered to vote in the city, you can attend the meeting to nominate the three candidates. You are invited to pre-register. The meeting begins at 10 a.m. at the Liberty Mountain Conference Center.

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