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    River Creek & Lansdowne
    RIVER CREEK/LANSDOWNE: Dialogues of Discovery
    One of the many Valentine's Day offerings at Cracker Barrel is Sterling. Times-Mirror/Joe Motheral
    The Howard Hughes Medical Institute at its Janelia Research Campus in Lansdowne will have its next lecture at 7 p.m. Wednesday, Feb. 18 with light refreshments available at 6:30 p.m. The Chemistry of Color will be presented by Janelia group leader Luke Lewis who will, “discuss how scientists are revisiting the chemistry of color to transform old dyes into new imaging agents to illuminate complex biological systems.”

    The HHMI reports that, “Synthetic colors are everywhere: in our homes, clothing, and food. Synthetic dyes were first discovered in the 19th century and laid the foundation for the modern chemical industry.”

    These lectures are held quarterly in an auditorium that usually rapidly fills up. Admission is free. To obtain a ticket contact Margaret Oriot at 571-209-4332 or at .(JavaScript must be enabled to view this email address).

    The sugar free documentary

    Last Wednesday evening, Stephanie Manning of River Creek and her cohort Anne Flam along with Dr. Martha Calihan of the Integrative Family Medicine Center in Leesburg, organized the showing of the documentary, “Fed Up” at Ida Lee Park, a movie that emphasizes the drawbacks of eating too much sugar. Leesburg Mayor Umstattd made opening remarks to an audience of over 200 people.

    For most people it was an educational journey, for one it “educates as to how your body processes different types of food differently.”

    Dr. Calihan favorably commented about the “large turnout and the number of people interested in whole foods.”

    With farm products available prior to the showing, she said that people were surprised at how “simple farm products” can provide a wholesome, tasty meal. She explained that the food we eat has a medicinal function.

    Valentine's Day

    Would St. Valentine have approved of the proliferation of flowers, candy and cards in his name? He may have blushed with embarrassment or stepped up on a pedestal and proclaimed it a day of romance.

    History provides us with an account that he was a clergyman who performed weddings for soldiers in Roman times when it was forbidden by the Emperor.

    In search of a valentine, I went to the novelty gift shop at the Cracker Barrel restaurant. I found Roscoe, a small stuffed creature clutching an heart shaped object. He seemed so much at home in the gift shop that I somehow managed to resist the urge to buy him. Happy Valentine’s Day.

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    RIVER CREEK/LANSDOWNE: Martinis Matter to benefit Adler Center
    The 10-year run of the Daffodil Ball designed by Dr. and Mrs. Jack Fox raised sufficient funds to build a Capital Hospice clinic. For the Foxes and many others, the dream became a reality last year with the opening of The Adler Center in Loudoun County off Route 50 on the Van Metre Campus in Stone Ridge.

    With the Daffodil Ball now a thing of the pasteam became a reality oney to build what was then re Janet Fox says, “If you are like most of us, we miss the fun and camaraderie that we all had working together on the Daffodil Ball.”

    Now that the Adler Center is a reality, the Martinis Matter event at the River Creek Clubhouse on Jan. 30 from 5:30 to 9 p.m., hosted by Laurie Tansey and Felicia Kettler of Capital Caring, will offer an opportunity to help defray the center’s operating costs. There will be raffle prizes and the ultimate: Daffotini that will be concocted by guest bartenders Kevin Conley, Ginger Wassum and Tom Reed.

    “Fed Up” documentary

    The “Fed Up” documentary will be shown at the Ida Lee Recreation Center at 6:30 p.m. Feb. 4 following a farmers’ market at 5:30 p.m. Free tickets are available at The e.vent is sponsored by Inova, Leesburg Parks and Recreation and Wegmans, based on an initiative by River Creek’s Stephanie Manning and Anne Flam who promote healthy eating habits.

    Lansdowne Golf Pro

    I recently met with Craig Forgash, 15 years a professional golfer and the club’s director of golf and instruction at Lansdowne Resort. He discussed the three golf courses at the resort and he expresses an interesting concept for golfers who are always eager for tips on improving their swing. I know it’s hard to imagine golf this time of year with icy conditions and January’s opposition to the game. Maybe golfers can take heart that in six weeks or so winter will begin to loosen its grip and golf courses will be more receptive than they are now.

    “The importance of a neutral, fundamentally sound setup position cannot be overstated. If your body is not aligned properly, it is impossible to create efficient movement because your body has to compensate for the lack of balance and stability,” Forgash said.

    He added something about “unnecessary movements” leading to inconsistency and frustration. Now I know what caused me to take refuge in a vocabulary punctuated by expletives.

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    RIVER CREEK/LANSDOWNE: Fundraiser for the Leesburg Volunteer Fire Co.
    The River Creek Club on Jan. 24 will be serving at 5:30 p.m. The Hook and Ladder Martini for the standard price of $10 – $5 of which will be headed for the coffers of the Leesburg Volunteer Fire Co. an organization that relies on charitable contributions to support itself.

    Again in keeping with the typical format, there will be raffle prizes. For advance sales of raffle tickets at $5 each, three for $10 or other donations get in touch with River Creek resident Georgina Potter at 703-669-9470 or by email at .(JavaScript must be enabled to view this email address).

    Potter urges participation because of the dedication and selfless involvement in men and women who care about the communities in which they are responsible.

    “So come out and have fun, (or call me to arrange a donation) and contribute to a great cause. Keep in mind that the work that these volunteer firefighters do help to minimize the tax burden on our community and that they have to raise about 30 percent of the budget every year,” Potter said.

    Pre-owned land

    Somehow a seat in front of the fireplace causes minds to wander and as such it may come as a surprise that residents of River Creek and Lansdowne are actually living on pre-owned land.

    Old building foundations, a cemetery, pottery shards, flint implements and ceremonial grounds – evidence that the Algonkian Indians inhabited Lansdowne in the early 1600s – have been found by a site survey conducted by historian Eugene Scheel. Maura Steele once uncovered an arrowhead along the river that testifies to the Algonkians or some other tribe having lived in River Creek.

    Thomas Ludwell Lee farmed the area in Lansdowne near the beginning of the 19th century. He named the homestead Coton after the Lee ancestral home in England. Elizabeth Mills Park, adjacent to the locks that once existed on Goose Creek near the Potomac, preserves the remains of a small village and a mill. The survey also discovered Civil War gun emplacements and trenches.

    Some time in the 1790s, Benjamin Edwards started a ferry service near the confluence of Goose Creek and the Potomac River. Bazil Newman’s family cemetery, marked by his headstone, is adjacent to Olympic Boulevard in River Creek. In the early to mid 1800s Newman owned 119 acres in River Creek and was the ferryman on Edward’s Ferry and part owner of a warehouse along Goose Creek.

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    RIVER CREEK/LANSDOWNE: Martinis Matter
    RIVER CREEK/LANSDOWNE: Post script 2014
    RIVER CREEK/LANSDOWNE: Martinis that Matter
    RIVER CREEK/LANSDOWNE: Tree lighting
    RIVER CREEK/LANSDOWNE: Gifts of the season
    RIVER CREEK/LANSDOWNE: Driving in deer country
    RIVER CREEK/LANSDOWNE: Turkey trotters
    RIVER CREEK/LANSDOWNE: The annual art show
    RIVER CREEK/LANSDOWNE: Pink Friday finale
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