Updated: 46 minutes ago
RICHMOND, Va. (WHSV) — The Virginia Department of Health and the Department of General Services Division of Consolidated Laboratory Services announced Monday the first case of the SARS-CoV-2 variant B.1.1.7 has been identified in a sample from a resident of Northern Virginia. The variant, which first emerged in the United Kingdom in 2020, is associated with increased person-to-person transmission of COVID-19, the Virginia Department of Health (VDH) says. “Viruses change all the time, and we expect to see new strains as disease spreads,” said State Health Commissioner M. Norman Oliver in a press release from VDH. “We know this variant strain spreads more quickly between people than other strains currently circulating in our communities, but we still have more to learn about whether it causes more severe illness. As our state public health officials closely monitor the emergence of the B.1.1.7 variant in our Commonwealth, it is important that all Virginians continue following mitigation measures.” VDH says nearly 200 cases of the B.1.1.7 variant have been detected in 23 states throughout the country as of January 22, 2021. VDH also says early data suggests currently authorized vaccines are effective against the new variant. The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention has been notified of the case. “As a virus spreads from one person to another, it makes copies of itself and sometimes makes small genetic changes called mutations. Because of these mutations, new variants of a virus are expected to occur over time. According to the CDC, multiple variants of the virus that causes COVID-19 have been documented in the United States and around the world. The B.1.1.7 variant contains an unusually large number of mutations,” the press release from the Virginia Department of Health says. For more information about COVID-19 variants, you can visit the Virginia Department of Health’s website or the CDC’s website.
Updated: 48 minutes ago
HARRISONBURG, Va. (WHSV) — After closing their doors temporarily in December, Clementine Cafe and Ruby’s Arcade in Harrisonburg are planning to reopen. The manager of the two bars, Matthew Clancey, says they are prioritizing the safety of staff and saving some money. “A lot of restaurants in Harrisonburg are still open,” Clancy said. “We came to the conclusion that it was better for the safety of our staff and the public, and just for the lack of revenue that was gonna happen, that we know that happens every December and January, and that you know, a couple of our major revenue streams... there wasn’t gonna be anything.” Clancy says they plan on reopening safely by closely following state guidelines. “According to the regulations the state has, what’s best for our staff and best for our guests. But fall is kind of our hope when business will be somewhat back to normal that we can start doing large catered parties, having bands and shows in here and getting back to what clementine and the arcade do really well,” Clancy said. Dukes Bar and Grill, which made its debut in June, has remained open but is struggling after the 10 p.m. curfew was put in place. Kyle House became manager in October after bartending there since it opened, but he says it has been a stressful transition. “We’ve stayed open to keep everyone in their homes, making money, food on the table for their kids,” said House. “We’ve got these restrictions with no relief, and we have no choice but to push on the best we can.” House says until there are fewer restrictions, there will be more and more small businesses that close down. “I’d just like to ask the governor to give some relief if not help small businesses, because like I said before, if this carries on the way he’s running things, we’re going to end up with just Walmart and Applebee’s left, and there will be no feeling left in Virginia at all. It’ll just be a corporate state,” House said. House says he wants to keep staff and customers safe while allowing for some normalcy.
Updated: 49 minutes ago
ROCKINGHAM, Va. (WHSV) — Officials say two warrants have been issued regarding a poaching case just north of Harrisonburg. According to a Facebook post from the Virginia Department of Wildlife Resources, a private property owner alerted authorities between September 2020 and January 2021 of several suspects trespassing and poaching multiple antlered deer at night from the property. The suspects allegedly cut antlers off the deer and carried them out in backpacks. Officials say the Rockingham County Sheriff’s office posted photos of the suspects the property owner was able to capture using trail cameras on their Facebook page. The post asked for the community’s help in identifying the suspects. The Facebook post says the Virginia Department of Wildlife Resources was then able to charge the suspects, thanks to the community’s help.
Updated: 51 minutes ago
ROCKINGHAM COUNTY, Va. (WHSV) — In October a former Rockingham County teacher wrote a biography about Lucy F. Simms, a former slave who grew up in Harrisonburg and later went on to become a teacher. Simms would go on to the Hampton Institute, where she would study to become a teacher. After she graduated, she returned to the Shenandoah Valley and began to teach in Rockingham County and Harrisonburg schools. The book is available for purchase at Rocktown History, but soon the community will be able to find it in the classrooms of Harrisonburg and Rockingham schools. Beau Dickenson, the social studies supervisor with RCPS, said back in the fall, the underwriter of the project donated 30 copies for each 11th grade U.S. History class in Harrisonburg and Rockingham County high schools. Dickenson said the school divisions already talk about Simms and her impact on education in the Valley, but this book will provide a local look at history. “Now her life is a lens into what was it like to be born into enslavement, and then to be freed, and then to live during the Civil War, and to struggle during reconstruction,” Dickenson said. On Tuesday, at the Rockingham County School Board meeting, Dickenson will present more on the biography and provide a copy to each member of the school board. Dickenson said because of the pandemic, not many students have been able to pick up the book, but hopes in February as more students return to in-person classes, they will be able to learn more about Simms. The book was a collaborative project between Dale MacAllister, Rockingham County Public Schools, Rocktown History, the Northeast Neighborhood Association, Bridgewater College and Lot’s Wife Publishing.
Updated: 52 minutes ago
Updated: 53 minutes ago
Currently there are career clothes, p-p-e and other health items--- available.