Frederick County Sheriff’s Office seeks to ID three

The Frederick County Sheriff’s Office is seeking to identify three people in connection with an incident Friday at Lowe’s in Stephenson.

The three individuals entered the Lowe’s at 261 Market St. on Friday, according to a department Facebook post. One subject proceeded to fill a cart with Dewalt tools.

The agency has 10 photos of the trio in its Facebook post on the incident.

No further information was available as of Saturday morning.

Deputies ask anyone with information to call 540-662-6162, reference 2400 1706 or contact Frederick Clarke Crime Solvers at 540-665-TIPS.

For more news from across the Shenandoah Valley, click here.

The Nationals Park Tour

views from the booth header v2

Happy Easter from The Booth!

It’s Easter Sunday as I write the latest VFB, a day that means hope and renewal for many. For baseball fans, this time of year also fills us with hope that “this could be our year,” no matter who we root for. Everyone is undefeated on Opening Day. But remember, the long baseball season is a marathon, not a sprint, and the best teams are the ones who can show consistency, stay injury-free, and weather the occasional losing streaks over a 162-game schedule. The cream usually rises to the top, but right now most of us are saying, “why not us?”

The baseball season usually begins in February with the arrival of pitchers and catchers to Spring training. It began in earnest for me this past Monday with the Media Day tour of Nationals Park. I’ve never taken part in this event before, but this year I, along with my sports broadcasting partner and fellow Sports Dog, Ryan Rutherford, decided to head to DC and take the ballpark tour.

Walking out on the lower concourse and seeing the immaculate outfield grass and perfectly smooth infield took me back to my very first major league game at old RFK Stadium, where my beloved Senators played in the late 60s through early 70’s. The sound of the baseball smacking into leather, the sight of the bright green turf, and the smell of ballpark food were all part of a sensory overload on the sunny but cool late-March morning.

The tour started out with the Nats showing off their upgraded high-resolution scoreboard. This year, even on the brightest sunny day, fans will have no problem seeing the scoreboard, and there will be newly-added hitting charts and info to add to the fan experience. Along with the improved scoreboard, there is also a new LED light display, complete with red, white, and blue lights which I can’t wait to see at a Nationals’ night game.

We were then taken through the various nooks and crannies of the stadium, where we heard from several Nationals’ officials about ticket plans, souveniers, special promotional days, and such. But the best part of the Media Day tour was saved for last–the food. The Nats have added some new ballpark concessions this year along with the tried and true favorites, and we had the pleasure of sampling some of those (think of Costco on steroids) on Monday.

I especially enjoyed the shrimp tacos and crabcake sliders. The Korean hot dogs were interesting, as were thre calamari rings. However, when I take in a game or two this season, I will probably revert to my favorite ballpark snack–peanuts in the shell.

All in all, a great day, and many thanks to the Washington Nationals for their hospitality. Now, if we can just speed that rebuild up a bit…

Until the next visit from The Booth, GO NATS!



Laurel Ridge prepares for “Spring Follies”

Logo used by permission from Laurel Ridge Community College

Laurel Ridge Community College is preparing to present a long running tradition.

The “Spring Follies” variety show will be presented at 2 and 6 p.m. April 13 and 2 p.m. April 14 in the Corron Community Development Center on the college’s Middletown campus. The show will feature music and skits performed by children and adults of all ages

The variety show is a long-running Laurel Ridge tradition, started in the 1970s by Professor Emerita Andrea Ludwick, according to a news release from the college. Ludwick still helps put on the Follies.

This year’s theme is “Be Happy,” according to the release. Director Russell Rinker, who has performed as a member of Blue Man Group and in many other plays and musicals, got his start as a preschooler in The Follies.

“It’s going to be such a fun show!” Ludwick said in the release. “The upbeat music and funny skits are certain to put everyone in a happy mood!”

Preshow activities will begin 90 minutes before showtime, and will include face-painting, coloring, musical chairs and a selfie station. Free ice cream will also be available, the release states. Additionally, Cub Scout Pack 3 will be selling hamburgers, hot dogs, chips and drinks as a summer camp fundraiser.

Tickets are $5 at the door, with children under 5 free. All proceeds benefit the Andrea Ludwick Performing Arts Fund.

For more news from across the Shenandoah Valley, click here.

Winchester man arrested in child sex-abuse case

Used by permission by the Warren County Office employee Sergeant Terry Fritts

The Warren County Sheriff’s Office wrapped up an investigation on Tuesday with the arrest of a Winchester man.

While operating the investigation authorities received several downloads of child sexual abuse material from a Winchester online account. Investigators were able to pinpoint the location of the account in the 400 block of Wardensville Grade.

Search warrants were secured and executed by the Frederick County Sheriff’s office which led to the arrest of David A. Morelli. The 36-year-old Morelli is currently being held at the Northwestern Regional Adult Detention Center without bond.

Morelli has a April 11 10:00 a.m. court date in Warren County Juvenile and Domestic Relations Court.

Anyone with any information on this case or any case regarding the solicitation of or exploration of a minor should contact the Warren County Sheriff’s Office.

For more news from across the Shenandoah Valley, click here.

Department of Forestry: No uncontrolled fires

Virginia Department of Forestry used by permission from VDF Communication Specialist Cory Swift-Turner

Firefighters are mopping up hotspots in Page and Rockingham counties this weekend, but the Virginia Department of Forestry reports that there are no uncontained fires in the area.

The department said it suppressed three new fires covering 14 acres on Wednesday. All three fires were in Dickenson County, the largest of which was 10 acres.

Officials remind the public that dry, windy conditions are returning this weekend. They present an increased fire hazard and burning should be avoided in such conditions.

The statewide burning law is in effect from through April 30. The law prohibits outdoor burning before 4 p.m. when the fire is within 300 feet of the woods or dry grass.

The department adds that smoke may still be visible in some areas. Air quality information is available at

To report a fire, call 911.

For more news from across the Shenandoah Valley, click here.

Youngkin passes 100 bills; vetoes marijuana sales and raising minimum wage

Governor Glenn Youngkin acted on 107 bills yesterday regarding a variety of topics.

Of the 100 passed, they included increasing law enforcement’s ability to prosecute child predators, expanding inmate access to health services, and raising the age for Jury Duty exemption from 70 to 73.

7 bills were vetoed including raising the minimum wage and the retail sale of marijuana.

In Youngkin’s veto statement, he claimed that legalizing the sale of marijuana would increase gang and violent crime, and have a negative effect on youth.

Virginia became the first southern state to legalize recreational use of marijuana in 2021.

The minimum wage proposal would have increased the current $12 rate incrementally to $13.50 in 2025 then $15 by 2026.

A full list of the 100 bills passed is available here.

Veto statements for the 7 others are available here.

For more news from across the Shenandoah Valley, click here.

Warren County Board of Supervisors announce a tax adjustment

Warren County Virginia new logo used by permission by Warren County Director of Technology Todd Jones

The Warren County Board of Supervisors (WCBS) announced that they authorized the County Administrator to advertise a real estate tax of 54 cents from the previous 49 cents.

That adjustment is a 10 percent increase.

The personal property tax rate will raise 9 percent to $4.36 from $4.00.

Funding of the police fire and rescue was the reason sighted by several supervisors.

Public safety and public-school needs are a top priority in this situation.

North River District Supervisor Rich Jamieson put it in perspective in the email release stating that it is a highly unusual situation with revenue going down while inflationary pressures are driving costs up.

Jamieson went on to say that the board is facing a wider gap that poses higher challenges than normal when it comes to public safety according to the email.

Warren County has not had a real estate tax increase since 2019.

A public hearing on the matter has been announced for April 9 at the Warren County Government Center with additional details to come.

For more news from across the Shenandoah Valley, click here.

Shenandoah River Report 3-29-24

In this edition of the SRR, Riverkeeper Mark Frondorf updates us on current Shenandoah River conditions, and has some tips on what to wear on those early Spring river excursions. Brought to you by Front Royal Outdoors, where Don Roberts can help you plan those South Fork adventures in 2024. Visit FRO at