Thursday, August 9, 2012

New York County History book; Bird Watching; BYOK; Symphony Concert


New book explores little known York County history
August 7, 2012
     The York County Historical Committee recently published a new book, "York County History: Essays and Memories," which focuses on 400 years of African American history in York County.
     It is a collection of articles, essays and oral history transcripts from the colonial period through the Civil War era, and into the 20th and 21st centuries. Included is information about the first Africans to arrive in the Virginia colony as indentured servants, the creation of an economic system based on slave labor, the role of African Americans in the Revolution and the Civil War, and the development of post-war African American communities.
     This is the second book published by the Historical Committee. The first, "Fact Sheets of York County History," is a compilation of writings by the late Dick Ivey, local historian, author and speaker. It contains over 40 articles and covers a wide range of subjects dealing with York County's long and illustrious history. Subjects include "Kiskiak Indians and the Europeans," "The Early Churches of Yorktown," "Old Yorke Village," and "Yankees in Yorktown." 
     Both books are available for purchase at the Gallery at York Hall and the Yorktowne Shoppe on Main Street in Yorktown, or by calling 757-898-0782. For more information on the Historical Committee and how it serves the community, visit


Birding at New Quarter Park on August 11
Join members of the Williamsburg Bird Club at New Quarter Park for an early morning bird walk on Saturday, August 11, at 8 a.m.  Birders will meet in the parking lot near the park office for the two-hour walk. The leader will be local naturalist Susan Powell, member of the Williamsburg Bird Club.  Binoculars and guides are available to borrow from the park office.  The group will walk to Queen's Creek to see waterfowl and birds of prey, and then through the woodlands and into a meadow to see songbirds.  The group usually sees 25 to 45 species.
New Quarter Park is located at 1000 Lakeshead Drive, near the Queen's Lake neighborhood.  From the Colonial Parkway, exit at Queen's Lake, turn right, and look for Lakeshead Drive.  Follow Lakeshead for 2 miles to the park. From I-64, exit at Rt. 199 toward Jamestown.  Take the first exit off of Rt. 199 on Rt. 143 West. Turn right at the first traffic light, Penniman Road. Turn left on Hubbard Lane and look for Lakeshead Drive on the right just after the Colonial Parkway overpass.  Follow Lakeshead to the park.


Kayaking from New Quarter Park on August 18
August 9, 2012
     Bring your own kayak (BYOK) or canoe to New Quarter Park on Saturday, August 18, to paddle on Queen's Creek with park staff.  BYOK takes place every third Saturday of the month from April through October. Learn more about the historic creek and enjoy seeing Ospreys, Egrets, Great Blue Herons, and Bald Eagles along the way.
     Participants should arrive at 9 a.m., drive 1 mile to the put-in site with park staff, and expect to launch by 9:20.  The paddle will last about two and a half hours with take-out around noon. The program is free with your own kayak or canoe and open to the public. Kayaks are available to rent for BYOK. Call the park office for information.
     New Quarter, a York County park, is located at 1000 Lakeshead Drive between the Queens Lake neighborhood and Cheatham Annex. From the Colonial Parkway, exit at Queen's Lake and turn right at the end of the exit ramp. Travel a short distance to Lakeshead Drive. Follow this road into the Park. If traveling to Williamsburg on Interstate 64, take exit 242, Route 199 toward Jamestown, then take the first exit on Route 143 west. Turn right on Penniman Road, travel one block, and then turn left on Hubbard Lane. Travel toward Queens Lake and turn right on Lakeshead Drive. Follow this road about 2 miles to the New Quarter Park office.
     For more information or to add your name to the New Quarter Park e-mail list, call York County Parks and Recreation at 890-3500 or New Quarter Park at 890-5840.


Symphony to perform 16th annual concert at Victory Monument
August 9, 2012
     The Virginia Symphony Orchestra, under the baton of Benjamin Rous, returns to Historic Yorktown at 7:30 p.m. on Saturday, September 1, for its 16th annual outdoor concert at the Yorktown Victory Monument on historic Main Street.
     Attendees are encouraged to arrive early with lawn chairs and picnic baskets. A just-for-fun blue ribbon judging for the most creative picnic set-up will be awarded prior to the concert. The award-winning Fifes and Drums of York Town will perform a pre-concert show at 6 p.m. Vendors will be on-site with light picnic fare, hot dogs, desserts and soft drinks.
     The symphony concert is funded by community contributors from organizations, businesses and individuals along with sponsors York County, York County Arts Commission and the Virginia Commission for the Arts, whose financial support makes it possible. The volunteer Celebrate Yorktown Committee annually raises $26,000 to present this free-to-the-public evening of music for the enjoyment of the community. 
Event parking information is as follows:
·        Plan to arrive early as parking is expected to fill up in Yorktown.
·        Event parking will be available at the York County Courts and Office Complex, Administration and York Hall buildings on Ballard Street, National Park Service Visitor Center, and the Riverwalk Landing Parking Terrace on Water Street.
·        Free handicapped-accessible trolley service will be available from these parking lots from 4 to 7:30 p.m. and beginning again at the conclusion of the concert. 
·        Due to heavy traffic; the trolley will not service the Visitor Center. Guests wishing to park at the Visitor Center will have a short walk to the concert grounds. 
·        Due to limited capacity, heavy pedestrian and vehicular traffic, the wait lines for the trolleys after the concert may be longer. 
     No rain date is scheduled for the concert. In the event of inclement weather, please call the event weather hotline at 890-3520 for updated information. For additional information, visit or call 890-4490.

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