Crozet Trails Crew Update – March/April 2018

via email –

Saturday, March 31, 9:00 a.m. — Work day to extend the Creekside Trail from Birchwood Hill Road to Jarman’s Gap Road. Meet on Birchwood Hill Road between Birmingham Drive and Welbourne Lane in Old Trail. Be prepared to clear grass, bushes, and tree limbs, and to use rake and shovel to even out the trail. Bring your own tools or use ours. Please dress for the weather, wear sturdy shoes and gloves, and bring water. Hats, sunscreen, and insect repellent are recommended.

Directions: from Old Trail Drive heading south, pass the first traffic circle then take the first right on Welbourne Lane. Follow it to the end, where it meets Birchwood Hill Road in a “T” intersection. Turn left and park along the road.


“Cheers for Charity” Kickoff Party, Saturday, April 7, 2:00 p.m. — Starr Hill Brewery will donate $1 for every pint of beer purchased at the Crozet brewery in April. Help get the fund off to a good start at our kickoff party. Get to know the trails and the trails crew. Food, drink, and maps–maybe even prizes! But fun conversation is guaranteed.

“Cheers for Charity” Bike Clinic, Sunday, April 15, 2:00 p.m. — More opportunities to drink beer, plus learn how to take care of your bike. Cor, owner of Crozet Bike Shop, will teach us some simple bike maintenance. Door prizes — you could win a free bike tune-up. Extra challenge: ride your bike to Starr Hill that day; show off your steel (or carbon). Lycra bike shorts not required!


“Cheers for Charity” Earth Day event TBA – the weekend of April 21-22

Mark your calendar: Monthly Trails Crew meeting Thursday, April 26, 6:30 p.m. at Starr Hill. Note the location — food truck and yes!, beer will be available.

How Does Local Government Work?

Let’s be inspired. I think we can do this here.

I saw this post recently – An Adult Civics Hour and think we can do the same thing Crozet. And Albemarle.  Based on the Facebook responses, we’re interested.*

I’m thinking of doing this at Crozet Mudhouse to start. Maybe an initial meeting to set the stage.

Topics? Maybe set a monthly agenda?

Note: This is about local politics, but it’s not partisan political; leave that stuff at home.

If you’re interested, please tell me here.

How the heck does local government even work?

City Council, School Board, Pierce County Council, it can all be so confusing. Maybe we learned this in high school, but let’s face it- most of us have forgetten it all.

Join us for a night with Washington State Teacher of the Year Nate Bowling and Metro Parks Commissioner Erik Hanberg. They will be breaking down how local government works and how we can impact the decisions that are made in our communities.

One of the goals for this year is to help Tacomans feel more educated and empowered about how local government works (instead of confused, mad, or disempowered/hopeless…)



In other words.




*I’m going to be moving away from Facebook. They are awful..

A Thought on Growth in Crozet

as seen on the Crozet Nextdoor, and posted with permission:

Looks like the Earth movers are in place at 1166 Blue Ridge Ave. William Park gets his wish & one of Crozet’s oldest neighborhoods gets sold out for a cheap apt complex. “The Vue” 130 units shoehorned on less than 5 acres which is zoned for no more than 30 total. They gamed every zoning loophole possible in maximizing density & profit. Public safety & quality of life in this little town gets brushed aside.

Ann Mallek ( has the nerve to praise The Vue in the name of the master plan & as a way to deflect criticism for rightfully refusing to expand zoning on the Adelaide property on Rt 250. Why is it an ‘either or’ when they are both bad for Crozet & there are great solutions under our noses?

She is having a town hall so we can ask her ourselves along with great questions like “Why would we ever vote for you again?” this Saturday, March 24. White Hall Community Building. 10 am – noon. Garth Road and White Hall Road. 2904 Browns Gap Turnpike. Thanks for listening. I wish this was the end of rant.

Some background on the Vue, for those unawares.

March 2018 CCAC Meeting – More on Master Plan

Hope everyone enjoyed their snow day!  This month’s Crozet Community Advisory Committee (“CCAC”) meeting has been rescheduled for next Wed, March 28 at The Crozet Library from 7-9pm.  NOTE CHANGE IN LOCATION.   Attached is an updated agenda.

Have you read the Crozet master plan? *


via email:


The Field School

Wednesday, March 21, 2018 from 7:00 p.m. to 9:00 p.m. Canceled due to snow.


1. Agenda Review (Dave Stoner – CCAC chair)
2. Approval of Minutes
3. Officer Nominations/Elections( 15 Min)
4. WAHS Wireless Tower SUP follow-up discussion (All 15 min)
5. Discussion on Crozet Master Plan Update – review of (All 90 min)

6. Items Not Listed on the Agenda

7. Announcements
8. Potential Future Agenda Items
a. Apr – Western Park Master Plan Update (Bob Crickenberger, Albemarle County)
b. Apr–Bucks Elbow Mnt Radio Tower replacement (Gabe Elias, Cville – UVA – Albemarle ECC)
c. Jun – Crozet Drinking Water Infrastructure Plan Update (Mr. Mawyer ACSA/RWSA)
d. Summer – Albemarle County Stormwater Utility Plans (Greg Harper, Env. Services Chief)


Please find attached the agenda for this month’s Crozet Community Advisory Committee (“CCAC”) meeting to be held next Wed, March 21 at The Field School from 7-9pm. NOTE CHANGE IN LOCATION.

As discussed last time, much of the meeting will center around a discussion of the future Crozet Master Plan (“CMP”) update. Specifically, please review the existing Crozet Master Plan and bring your ideas of changes, new or existing priorities, or other updates that should be considered in the future Master Plan update. Given that the CMP update may well be a year or likely more in the future, the CCAC wanted to compile an initial list of needs/priorities to complement the findings of the recent community survey (attached), in order to: (1) have an initial compilation of such priorities/changes to feed into the CMP update, whenever that happens, and (2) to communicate such to the County staff, PC and BoS for consideration in the interim when making decisions on rezonings, SUP’s, resource allocations, and ongoing efforts.

The Crozet Master Plan can be found here or hardcopies may be available by contacting Emily Kilroy.


Crozet Community survey 2018–Master Plan slides


*I would wager most in Crozet haven’t read the Crozet master plan

More, via email, from Dave Stoner

Attached are some supplementary materials in preparation for this Wed’s CCAC meeting.  These items are intended to help guide the discussion about key changes, new or existing priorities, principles, or other updates that should be addressed by the future update of the Crozet Master Plan:

  1. An outline of the Crozet Master Plan – I am thinking we simply use this outline to organize and guide our discussion;
  2. Summary of key issues CCAC addressed in 2016 and 2017 – This may in part remind us of at least our more recent important concerns;
  3. Crozet Community Survey – Findings Related to the Master Plan (previously discussed and distributed).

I think that this discussion can be a quite daunting task to accomplish in one meeting. I would thus suggest that at this meeting we simply try and brainstorm or list key changes/priorities/updates in each area of the plan, and prioritize them as “major” or “minor/detailed” issues.  In a subsequent follow-up meeting we might then further prioritize the list, decide exactly what and how we want to transmit this information to the County staff, Planning Commission, and Board of Supervisors, and wordsmith any such statement.  I also think it is important to realize this is just an interim first step in any future Master Plan update, in order to:  (1) create an initial compilation of such priorities/changes to feed into the future CMP update, and (2) to communicate such to the County staff, PC and BoS for consideration in the interim when making decisions and for ongoing efforts.  The future full Master Plan update will require a much more detailed set of conversations with supporting work product, performed over a period of time to properly capture the detail required in such a plan.

If anyone has suggestions they wish to offer prior to the meeting I will endeavor to compile them quickly and bring to the meeting to “seed” the discussion.  Additionally, if anyone is particularly passionate about a particular topic/chapter and wants to lead the discussion about that topic, please feel free to do so.  Finally, if there are other ideas about how to run this…I’m all ears.

I look forward to a productive discussion Wed eve.  Reminder – we’re at the Field School.

Crozet Trails Crew Workdays – March 2018

via email

Go green for St. Patrick’s Day by helping to maintain a Crozet trail! We have a workday this Saturday, March 17 at 9 am at the Creekside Trail in Old Trail (apologies for the date error in our last email). This beautiful trail that runs along Lickinghole Creek needs some attention–we will build a section of boardwalk and make other trail improvements. Wear sturdy shoes or boots and bring water, pruners/loppers, and work gloves.

Directions: from Jarman’s Gap Road, turn into Old Trail on Old Trail Drive. Go through the first traffic circle, then turn right on Welbourne Lane to pass through the Creekside gate/pylons. Entrance to the trail is .2 miles on the left, almost directly across from Millstream Drive. Park along the street. If coming from 250, simply reverse!

Continue the celebratory spirit into April by raising a toast to our trails! Starr Hill Brewery has once again named the Crozet Trails Crew as the April beneficiary of Cheers for Charity! $1 of every pint sold during the month will be donated to our work building and maintaining Crozet Trails. Plan to attend some of our planned special events at Starr Hill (and buy a beer or two while you’re there)–or just stop by for no reason at all!

Saturday, April 7, 2 pm, Kickoff party – an informal gathering to celebrate our work (and sell beer). If you already know the Trails Crew, come for the fun. If you don’t know us, come on out to meet some friendly people and learn about the trails.

Sunday, April 15, 2 pm — Bike Maintenance Demo presented by Cor from the Crozet Bicycle Shop. Learn how to do simple repairs and bring your questions. We’ll be giving away a couple of bike tune-ups as door prizes.

Sunday, April 22, 1 pm – Earth Day 4K Trail Race. More details to come.

Our next monthly meeting will be Thursday, March 22, 6:30-8 pm at Mi Rancho in Old Trail Town Center. See you on the trails,

New Voting Districts in Crozet

Important from Alison Wrabel at the Daily Progress:

The electoral board proposed subdividing several existing precincts because the number of registered voters in those precincts is growing.

One new precinct, named the Mechums River Precinct, has Western Albemarle High School as its polling place, and it moves some voters from the Brownsville and Crozet precincts.

The change will help with line lengths at the Brownsville polling place, reduce congestion in the Crozet Elementary parking area and shorten line lengths at the Crozet Precinct, the electoral board recommendation said.

 PDF from the DP

Development (units) coming to:


30 – Crozet Station
26 – Blue Ridge Co-housing
126 – The Vue
74 – West Glen


24 – Creekside Village
34 – Haden Place
1850 – Old Trail

Mechums River

180 – Foothill Crossing
24 – Chesterfield Landing
145 – Westlake Hills
65 – Wickham Pond
80 – Adelaide
14 – Fair Hills


Why Move to Crozet?

It’s a real estate post; I’m real estate agent. One of the best additions to Nest’s site over the years is the Seller’s Scoop – where the seller tells their story. Pictures are worth 1,000 words, but a few authentic words are invaluable. I love the words of my clients.

Wickham Pond

  • Living Here Has Been: We have loved that we have found this place in Wickham Pond in Crozet, VA. We had no idea how much we would fall in love with this place every. single. day. The mountains, the people, the energy! We love that we can go to D.C. or Richmond or just stay home. There is magic in these mountains!!
  • View: We love our mountain view from the master bedroom. It faces toward the farm with rolling hills with the mountain as a back drop. You can literally see the weather move in as it approaches.
  • Room: We love to watch the fire in the living room especially on a chilly night.
  • Walk: We love to walk through our neighborhood and even the Wickham Pond trails. There is even a trail that crosses over into Western Ridge. It is easy to walk to Highlands as well. So many ways to walk or run. All the neighborhoods have hills and flat areas
  • Hike: We love to hike Sugar Hollow, Humpback and even Mint Springs. We just discovered the Ragged Mountain area where you can hike around the reservoir. The options are endless from the Monticello Trail to the Shenandoah National Park right in our backyard!
  • Breakfast: A new local breakfast place just opened in downtown Crozet. Simple menu. Good food. We love to go to Charlottesville and eat at the Bluegrass Grill! YUM.
  • Lunch: Roots Natural Kitchen in Charlottesville is the best. A great meal that fills your belly and doesn’t empty your wallet! A UVA student started/run business. Greenwood Gourmet Grocery Store is such a fun place to shop for local and interesting goodies and
  • Dinner: Sal’s Pizza in Crozet is our go to Pizza Shop! Restoration in Old Trail in a wonderful place to chill out and enjoy a beautiful view!! On the Downtown mall, we love to go to the Red Pump. Delicious farm to table.
  • Pub/Winery: Fardowners….local fare and hometown feel right next to the Crozet Hardware store and Mudhouse Coffee Shop!!!

Parkside Village


  • Living Here Has Been: Community. We’ll miss it. Crozet parades, special events. Passing books from one person to the next in a long line stretching from the “old Crozet library” to the beautiful new building will be something we remember forever!
  • View: Bathroom picture window. Most mornings I wake up, walk into the bathroom, and spend a second to take in the mountain view looking south from the house to Heards Mountain.
  • Room: Kitchen, as seen from the family room. Claudine loves to cook so I have spent many an evening sitting in the family room reading or watching TV while smelling the delights she’s cooking up from the kitchen. When onions, garlic, and olive oil hit the pan
  • Tree: The maple in our back yard. It’s beautiful in the spring and glorious in the fall. Best of all it’s far enough away from the house that I haven’t had to clean a gutter since moving in!
  • Walk: Name one. From this location we can walk to our favorite downtown shops or restaurants, hit the Crozet trails to surrounding neighborhoods, walk the new track around Crozet Park, or simply stroll the Parkside neighborhood.
  • Hike: Mint Springs Park – great mountain trails with great views. Once while in the park we may have even ventured off the beaten path and up Bucks Elbow Mountain to find the site of the 1959 plane crash.
  • Breakfast: Coffee and a pastry at Mudhouse
  • Lunch: Sandwich at Greenhouse or Crozet Pizza.
  • Dinner: Fardowners – Sunday evening especially – $2.50 pints on VA brewed beers!
  • Pub/Winery: Stinson Vineyards – unbelievable mountain views, great wine, and live music on Thursday evenings in the summer.

Crozet Soccer Players Seeking New Fields

Letter from Western’s Principal

This is an important conversation for us to have in schools, at homes, in coffee shops, and pubs. Posting with permission.

via email 

Dear Western Families:

It has been almost two weeks since I issued a statement in response to a controversy over a student project related to the study of To Kill a Mockingbird in one of our English classes. This incident elicited many emotions, from anger among our visiting girls’ basketball team to surprise and then concern among our own students who were unaware of the situation. It is important for us to understand how our visitors felt about what was displayed on the student project as well as our own students’ feelings.

While the conversation began because of the historic images used in a student project, this situation has sparked a larger dialogue around issues of racial equality, respect, tolerance and inclusiveness in our relationships with one another in our community. We see this as an important opportunity which should be seized.

We are now at a point in time when, collectively, we can address, head-on, many of the issues that concern us. This is an opportunity to listen, learn and work together for the benefit of our community. We already have many mechanisms in place to support this discussion. We must use these structures and others to increase dialogue and build understanding.

Last year we created the Western Feeder Pattern Diversity Focus Group comprised of elementary, middle and high school teachers, parents and administrators. This group was formed to address issues within our own community around diversity and to help all of our schools provide a more supportive atmosphere for all kids.

We have an Equity and Diversity team of teachers and staff at Western who are focused on understanding biases in our school and in our practices and is working with staff and students for equality, equity and success for all of our kids.

Our school improvement climate goal this year is focused on empowering all kids to have voice and agency and to be comfortable in stepping up when they see things that are harmful to others. We want our students to develop and actively use bystander awareness strategies to support each other and a healthier school community.

As principal, I see our students achieving in many areas as part of our school and division. Academically, students regularly challenge themselves to take many of the most rigorous classes offered. On the stage and athletic fields, our students compete at the highest level and challenge themselves and their teams in competition.

We must remind ourselves that achieving these goals should never be in the absence of qualities that best exemplify us as learners and leaders: sportsmanship, character, and integrity.

I care deeply about each one of my students, as does every member of our staff. We have and will continue to accomplish great things. If we are to continue to move forward as a caring, supportive, high-performing community, we must work together to better understand the contributions each of us will make. We need more honest conversations about school culture and student experiences.

Such conversations often are not easy, but they are necessary if we are to ensure that racism, bigotry and all forms of harassment will have no place in our schools. I know we can create the most respectful and best learning environment for every one of our kids. In the near future, I will be reaching out with information on opportunities for parents, students, and community members to join us in this work. I hope that you will partner with us as we move forward.

We will continue to find ways to improve. For your child. For every child.


Darah Bonham


Background from the Daily Progress

A homework assignment depicting racist themes in the novel “To Kill a Mockingbird” sparked controversy Monday when the English classroom at Western Albemarle High School was used that evening as a changing room for the Fluvanna County High School girls’ basketball team.

“So after our game we found a poster in the locker room we [were] in and it said ‘negros sit in the back of the bus,’” one player wrote on social media after the game. “That is very disrespectful and racist.”

The post angered others, including one parent who said that Western Albemarle should voluntarily forfeit the game it won, 45-34, to “voluntarily stand up to racism.”

Western Albemarle Principal Darah Bonham said the poster was part of a project on Harper Lee’s novel set in 1930s Alabama that asked students to analyze themes such as racial tension, injustice and poverty, and then draft written and visual depictions of them.



Just a Good Crozet Morning

Some days, it’s nice to take a breath, ride easy, and stop here and there for a photo or two. Often, I share these photos on social media, but this morning thought I’d share here.

We choose to live in a not-ugly place.

A highlight of this morning’s ride was seeing the woman in her bathrobe who was compelled to come outside and take a picture of the sunrise.

Continue reading “Just a Good Crozet Morning”