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Riparian Woman's Club

Emporia Police Appreciation Dinner

The Riparian Woman’s Club honored the Emporia Police Department with dinner recently.

It was the club’s way of congratulating the EPD on their CALEA achievement, a gold standard award in public service. It involved a lot of hard work under the direction of Chief Rick Pinksaw and it so happens that only a small number of law enforcement departments earn this special award. It is an ongoing effort on behalf of the department to continue its high standards.

Later in the evening Laura Saunders, Regional President of CALEA, presented the department a framed CALEA certificate at the Emporia City Council meeting. A standing ovation by a full house of citizens expressed appreciation for the department.

The dinner was another way of the Riparian Woman’s Club expressing its support of the EPD

who every day and every night protect our community. How fortunate we are for their bravery.

The Elms Featured on Riparian Christmas Home Tour

Welcome to this historic home on the Emporia Riparian Woman’s Club Christmas Home Tour. We are excited that guests will have the opportunity to see this home located in the Town of Jarratt.

The Elms, aka the “Jarratt House”, in Jarratt VA, was originally built in 1833. Burned by Union soldiers in Dec 1864, it was rebuilt on the original footprint in 1866. It’s believed that the 14 inch solid brick walls of the 1st floor survived the fire. The home remained in the Jarratt family until 2012 but had been vacant for several years. It is currently being restored by Kurt Whitehead of Richmond VA. He is the son of Thomas and Cecelia Whitehead, who grew up in Greensville County and currently reside on Lake Gaston. Mr. Whitehead’s family connections to the area are extensive. He is the great, great grandson of Newitt H. Ferguson; one of five local Confederate men who participated in the Hicksford Raid. 

As you enter the grounds, there are two large antique iron urns on brick pedestals. The house, surrounded by massive magnolia and pecan trees, is a raised basement Greek Revival style with Italianate details. A basket weave pattern tumbled brick sidewalk leads to the columned porch and 2nd floor entrance. Since the house is still being renovated, only the 2000 sq. foot 2nd floor containing a hallway, living room, three bedrooms, two baths, and enclosed rear porch are on the tour. There are pine floors, 12 foot ceilings, and 3 of the 4 original fireplaces.

The home is furnished primarily with American Empire antiques from 1820s – 1860s, Victorian, and period reproductions. The walls are hung with antique prints, paintings, portraits and family photos. Throughout the house are many 19th century items like converted oil lamps, bronze and spelter statues, books, clocks, and girandoles.

Upon entering, you will be welcomed into a stately 12 x 38 foot hallway that runs from the front to rear of the house. The dark gray walls are offset by white woodwork, antiques, and artwork. Among the antique hallway furniture are pier tables, sofa, chairs, and a bookcase housing a collection of books printed in the 1800s and early 1900s.

In keeping with the original style, the living room is the most formal room in the house. Over the mantle hangs a 5 ft. x 7 ft. ornate mirror. There is a 12-light vintage French Empire chandelier. The Empire sofa is upholstered in archival reproduction fabric.  Of particular interest are an exceptional antique chair with ormolu mounts and a rosewood marble top cabinet. There is a collection of French ethnography prints from the late 1700s.

    

The bedrooms are furnished with antique and reproduction beds, marble topped dressers, chests, and other furnishings. 

Mr. Whitehead travels extensively for both work and leisure. He has acquired many antiques and decorative items on trips throughout the US, Europe, India, and Central and South America. The house is decorated with fresh and artificial greenery and seasonal décor. In the windows are custom made Christmas candles.  In the hallway is a Christmas tree decorated with ornament that were collected on his travels.

While the home contains 19th century furniture, it also has fully integrated 21st century technology. The house uses smart technology for the heating/AC, security, and entertainment systems. Using a phone App or accessing a computer allows the owner to adjust heating/AC settings, music, volume, and monitor security from any place in the world. 

The owner regrets that the first floor containing formal dining room, library, kitchen and pantry are not available for the tour but he hopes you will return again next year to see the completed home.

The Riparian Woman’s Club of Emporia, VA will once again present the 15th Christmas Home Tour. The tour will be Friday, December 2 from 4:30 pm to 8:00 pm and Saturday, December 3 from 11:30 am to 3:30 pm. The proceeds will go toward the Community Improvement Project, a two- year project, to make the community a better place to live, work and raise a family. Tickets are $13 and are available from Riparian members, Emporia-Greensville Chamber of Commerce or Paws, Purrs, and Hers, Nottoway House, Courtland or by calling 434-594-4369.

The tour will include the homes of David and Rosemarie Bland, Mike and Dawn Veliky and the Historic Masonic Lodge located in Emporia, the home of Jamie and Robin Rawles of Southampton County (Capron), Timothy and Stephanie Dunlow of Roanoke Rapids, NC.

Get Your Riparian Miniatures While You Can!

The Riparian Miniatures Series is coming to a close. All miniatures are currently on sale for $15 each.  The history book, Sketches of Greensville County is also $15.  Once all miniatures and books are sold, this project will come to an end.  Funds raised by this project are donated to community projects.  Contact Evelyn Ewing at 634-9227 or another Riparian member for more information.

The Masonic Lodge

The Riparian Woman’s Club is honored to have this historic building on the Christmas Home Tour.

The Widow’s Son Lodge #150 (Masonic Lodge) was organized and held its first meeting in 1829 at Haley’s Bridge in Greensville County. In 1840 they held meetings in the Hicksford Courthouse until property was purchased for this grand building you are standing in today. The property known as “Lands old store lot” was acquired from William and Helen Land for $650 and in 1905 built an impressive Classical Revival style building. In 1955 another piece of property was purchased from Sallie Baily for $5.00 for purpose of adding an addition at the back of building. In the front of the lodge is one of Virginia’s Historical Markers.

    

The Lodge is under the jurisdiction of The Grand Lodge of Virginia. The Fraternity encourages its members to practice the faith of their personal acceptance with the single purpose “to make good men better.”

In 1850 Dr. Rob Morris, lawyer, educator and mason started The Order of the Eastern Star which is open to both men and women. Its teachings are based on the bible and is open to all faiths. The Emporia Eastern Star was chartered in 1940.

The first floor is now a shop offering clothing and all kinds of household items, donated by the community. The Eastern Star opened the shop about ten years ago and now have been joined by the Masons. The funds are given to the Greensville and Jarratt Fire Departments and are used as well to fund their scholarship programs. You will find the shop neatly organized for easier shopping. Tour guests may make purchases while on tour.

    

The second floor as well as the third floor may be reached from the stairs or the elevator. This floor offers a very large room where the Masons enjoy dinner on their monthly meeting night and the where the Eastern Star has their fellowship time. This room is available for rent to the public. Throughout the building notice the tall windows and ceilings. Time has taken its toll on this grand building and the location near the railroad is largely responsible. Renovation of the ceiling and walls in some areas are in the planning stage.

The Eastern Star membership has prepared refreshments on Saturday for your enjoyment on this floor.

The third floor is the chapter room where the Eastern Star and the Masons hold their monthly meetings. The two aluminum ceiling medallions that adorn the large meeting room were installed by the late Harry S. Klugel! Those who knew Mr. Klugel will appreciate his work.  (Mr. Klugel owned the beautiful Klugel building on E. Atlantic Street.)  In the center of the meeting room is a King James Bible that is always open during the meetings to the book of Matthew. Much of the Eastern Star devotions and study are centered on Matthew and his teachings.  

The Riparian Woman’s Club of Emporia, VA will once again present the 15th Christmas Home Tour. The tour will be Friday, December 2 from 4:30 pm to 8:00 pm and Saturday, December 3 from 11:30 am to 3:30 pm. The proceeds will go toward the Community Improvement Project, a two year project, to make the community a better place to live, work and raise a family. Tickets are $13 and are available from Riparian members, Emporia-Greensville Chamber of Commerce or Paws, Purrs, and Hers, Nottoway House, Courtland or by calling 434-594-4369.

The tour will also include the homes of David and Rosemarie Bland, Mike and Dawn Veliky located in Emporia, the home of Jamie and Robin Rawles of Southampton County (Drewryville), Timothy and Stephanie Dunlow of Roanoke Rapids, NC and Kurt Whitehead of Jarratt.

2016 Riparian Home Tour Starts at Oak Lawn

Oak Lawn, in Purdy, VA is the home of Mike and Dawn Veliky, who purchased the property in the summer of 2013.  Mike is the Greensville County Building/Fire Official and Dawn is the Register/Director of Veterans Affairs at Halifax Community College.   

The Southern Colonial home was constructed in 1953 by Wiley and Francis Cole, who operated a working cattle farm on the original 200 plus acres.  Most locals came to know the home a the “The Cole Place”, although it was named Oak Lawn by Mrs. Cole, cue to the many oak trees that once existed in the front yard. Only one massive oak remains today.

The planning and designing of the home was ahead of its time, incorporating such features as walk in cedar lined closets throughout, double vanities in the master suite, a walk in shower, ceramic tiled bathrooms, circuit breakers instead of fuses, and under floor electric radiant heat throughout the home.  The home was constructed with steel and concrete floors over the basement, four fireplaces, a 12 inch thick poured concrete basement with over 8 feet of headroom, slate roof, insulated interior walls, nine foot ceiling throughout both stories and a full room width built in china cabinet in the large dining room. 

    

When the Velikys purchased the property in 2013, the home and grounds had unfortunately suffered from several years of neglect, due to the failing health and eventual passing of first, Mr. Cole, then Mrs. Cole a few short years later.  Even so, the Velikys were able to recognize the excellent quality of the materials and workmanship that went into the original construction, and decided to take on the challenge of restoring the home to its original splendor and charm.  Their vision is to keep the traditional southern architecture prominent, but to enhance the rear yard area with landscaping and features that personify their love of the outdoors and tropical lifestyle.  In the summer months, Mexican Petunias, banana and palm trees, night blooming Primroses and soft accent lighting add to the tropical feel out back, while the blooming crepe myrtles, fragrant hydrangeas, slate walkways, rockers, and shy blue ceiling of the front porch recreate a Charleston like atmosphere at the main entry.

Mike and Dawn are slowly restoring and renovating everything themselves, and thus far have remodeled the kitchen, added an in-ground fiberglass kidney shaped pool, outdoor shower, pool house/Tiki bar and stamped concrete patio.  Future plans include modifying a rear den into a sunroom overlooking the pool area, and renovating all three bathrooms.  Mike is interested in energy conservation and new technology, and has equipped the home with a security system and cameras, wifi, and is currently installing a hybrid solar heat pump system, which uses solar energy to convert the refrigerant from a liquid into a gas, reducing the load on the compressor.  He also plans to install a reflective radiant barrier in the full height attic, to assist with energy conservation. 

This is a gorgeous home and will be decorated for the Christmas holidays in evergreen swags up the curving banister leading to the second floor and around all four fireplace mantels.  There will be several decorated Christmas trees throughout and a snowman in the entryway to greet the guests.

The tour will include the home of David and Rosemarie Bland and the Historic Masonic Lodge located in Emporia, the home of Jamie and Robin Rawles of Southampton County (Drewryville), Timothy and Stephanie Dunlow of Roanoke Rapids, NC and Kurt Whitehead of Jarratt.

The Riparian Woman’s Club of Emporia, VA will once again present the 15th Christmas Home Tour. The tour will be Friday, December 2 from 4:30 pm to 8:00 pm and Saturday, December 3 from 11:30 am to 3:30 pm. Refreshments will be served at the Masonic Lodge on Saturday. The proceeds will go toward the Community Improvement Project, a two year project, to make the community a better place to live, work and raise a family. Tickets are $13 and are available from Riparian members, Emporia-Greensville Chamber of Commerce or Paws, Purrs, and Hers, Nottoway House, Courtland or by calling 434-594-4369.

Local Student Authors Win State Contest

The Riparian Woman's Club hosted it's annual Writing contest, the children who place first at the district level went on to the GFWC VA (General Federation of Women’s Clubs Virginia) State competition.  No student from Greensville County Public Schools has ever won at the state level.  This year two won.  Blair Dickens won 1st place for Poetry and Davis Robinson won 1st place for Short Story.  Both children will be moving on the National Contest.  Both are students in the 4th grade at Greensville Elementary School. Blair is the student of Melissa Harrison and Davis is the student of Brenda Matthews.  Blair is the 10 year old daughter of Doug and Tina Dickens of Skippers, VA and Davis is the 10 year old son of Will and Gloria Robinson of Emporia.

Riparian Woman's Club Dedicates "True Heroes" Mural

"Tribute To True Heroes"

It matters not what day it is
Or what time our clock shows
We know we're all being protected
By a class of true heroes.
 
Now some are on a payroll
While others just volunteer
Yet one cannot tell the difference
For each trains for years and years.
 
Yes they are all professionals
Performing in their chosen field
they do not stop their aid to us
Until a solution they do yield.
 
Now we can't put them in order
For we never know what will be our need
Yet whenever alerted they do respond
With times at amazing speed.
 
Now we have comfort for 24-7
For these are the hours our police patrol
Their constant efforts and ingenuity
Help to keep our crime rate low.
 
The police also run an escort
For funerals and parades
They fit this into their schedule
With no extra accolades.
 
Our police help teach our children safety
Like with strangers do not walk
Yes and they find the time if needed
To sit with them and talk.
 
Now all our police units work together
Yes the County City and State
They Keep Safe City streets and our highways
And that's something to appreciate.
 
We know at once that they all care
by the things they say and so
Still there are times we don't acknowledge this
Yes both me and you.
 
A little thank you here of there
For sure would be alright
Yes many leave their families to help us
Whether by day or late at night.
 
At times they have a thankless job
With danger lurking everywhere
Many times the only solace they will get
Is when we let then know we care.
 
Now the 911 dispatchers help to direct
All the emergency traffic flow
They alert the police, fire and rescue squads
As to where they have to go.
 
The dispatcher's job cam be critical
For it can assure a quick response
The time saved by good directions
Has saved lives more than once.
 
We can't forget the jailers and correctional crews
Who help keep safe both you and me
Yes they watch over the lawbreakers
So that none of them break free.
 
Now health care providers are there from the start
And their aid often interceded
They help us through disasters
Plus with many of our other needs.
 
We cannot forget the National Guard
Our men and women which are oh so brave
Yes they will remain on stand-by alert
Ever ready for our freedom to save.
 
Now these are all true heroes
And to show them honor we implore
Wes give the thanks that they deserve
For we could not ask for more.
 
The dedication of this mural today
Depicts the feelings of the community at hand
Yes and to share our gratitude with all
Makes this especially grand
 
Roy E. Schepp
Emporia, VA
 

Agencies honored by this mural are the Emporia Volunteer Fire Department, Jarratt Volunteer Fire Department, Virginia National Guard, Greensville Volunteer Rescue Squad, Virginia State Police, Emporia Police Department, Emporia Sheriff's Department, Greensville County Sheriff's Office, Regional Jail Officers, Greensville Correctional Center Officers, 911 Dispatchers, Health Care Providers, and all Military, past and present.

The mural was painted by Enfield, NC, artist Napoleon Hill.  Mr. Hill is no stranger to murals in Emporia, he also painted the mural of Royal Baptist Church and the Emporia Diner on the Samaritan Helping Hands Building on North Main Street.  Mr. Hill is a graduate of Halifax Community College with a degree in Interior Design and Commercial Art, he continued his education in the fine arts in Westport, Connecticut.  His murals grace Eastern North Carolina and Southern Virginia and he has been featured in the "Tarheel Traveler."

Two of Mr. Hill's paintings are housed in our Nation's Capital; one is in the office of his Congressman, C. K. Butterfield and the other is owned by President Barack Obama.

After asking each group to raise their hands, Jean Cobb added, " Thanks to each of you for your dedication and service to our community.  Thanks to your families who worry each time you leave home."
 

Riparian Woman's Clup Offers Special Pricing on Emporia Greensville Historic Miniatures

The series of historic miniatures that have been offered by the Riparian Woman's Club for many years are currently being offered with special pricing.

The newest offering, the Emporia Police Department, is still $25, but all previous years are offered at substantial savings.

Miniatures of E. W. Wyatt Middle School, the Emporia Diner and Royal Baptist Church are being offered for $10 each.

Miniatures of the Emporia Auditorium, Emporia Elementary School, Jarratt High School, Citizens National Bank, Emporia Armory, Emporia Post Office, Emporia Train Depot, Emporia Volunteer Fire Department, Emporia Water Tower, First National Bank, Good Earth Peanut Company, Greensville County Court House, Greensville Memorial Hospital, Greensville Volunteer Rescue Squad, Greensville County Clerk's Office, Klugel Building, Masonic Temple, New York Restaurant, Pitts Theater, Village View, Virginia Hotel, Calvary Baptist Church, Christ Episcopal Church, First Presbyterian Church, Main Street Baptist Church, Main Street United Methodist Church, Monumental United Methodist Church and St. John Lutheran Church are all priced at $15 each.

Miniatures are displayed and may be purchased at the Emporia-Greensville Chamber of Commerce or from Evelyn Ewing - (434)634-9227 or (434)594-4198

Sketches of Greensville County, Virginia, Second Edition 1650-2000 is available from the Richardson Memorial Library or from Evelyn Ewing.  Sketches is $30 id purchased in-person or $35 is shipped.  Miniatures will be shipped for a fee of $5 each for postage and handling.

Riparian Plant Sale Benefits Community

On Saturday, the Riparian Women's Club held a Plant Sale with baked goods and gently used jewelry.  All proceeds benefit local community organizations.

 

Reorder Jarratt High School Miniatures Now

The 2013 Riparian Miniatures arrived in November and, very quickly, were selected for treasured Christmas gifts. We have requests for more miniatures of the historic Jarratt High School and need to learn if others wish to place an order.  Please call Evelyn Ewing  at 434-634-9227 as soon as possible for delivery in March. The cost of the miniatures is $25.00. 

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