Project Impact Calendar Distribution Begins

STAUNTON (December 4, 2017) —A popular locally-produced calendar that features a collection of historic photos from around the Shenandoah Valley and amusing “holidays” for each day of the year is currently being distributed in the cities of Staunton, Waynesboro, Harrisonburg, Lexington and the counties of Augusta, Rockingham, Rockbridge, Highland and Bath. The unique calendar, produced by Shenandoah Valley Project Impact (SVPI) and the Central Shenandoah Planning District Commission (CSPDC), has become a community holiday tradition around the region, and is available at government centers, libraries and other locations, while supplies last.

“We start getting calls asking when the calendars come out as soon as the holidays hit,” said Rebecca Joyce, Community Program Manager with the Central Shenandoah Planning District Commission, developed the first calendar in 2003 and has been supervising production ever since.

This year’s calendar features the towns of the Shenandoah Valley, and contains a mix of entertaining historic photos and facts. But the underlying purpose of the publication is to provide easily accessible information about disaster preparedness and mitigation pertinent to each season. The distribution of materials to help the general public prepare for emergencies is part of SVPI’s mission to educate the community about opportunities and planning for severe weather events and emergencies of all kinds.

“We want the information at people’s fingertips all year long, so that’s where the idea of a calendar was born,” Joyce added.

The calendar is part of SVPI’s ongoing efforts to create awareness about preparedness. Since its inception in September 2000, SVPI has conducted hundreds of trainings, demonstrations, surveys, forums and planning meetings, as well as developed important plans and printed materials to educate Valley residents on ways to protect their families, homes and properties, and businesses from the impact of severe weather, emergencies, and disasters. SVPI is also a pilot community within the Resilient Neighbors Network, a national program that will forge stronger efforts within local communities to prepare and respond to emergencies.

Locations where the calendar is available (while supplies last) can be found HERE.

Request for Proposals – Auditing Services

The Central Shenandoah Planning District Commission (CSPDC) is requesting proposals from qualified firms of Certified Public Accountants to contract for financial and compliance audit services for the fiscal year ending June 30, 2018 through June 30, 2020 with the option to extend the contract for four subsequent years.

If interested, you may obtain a copy of the Request for Proposal in electronic form by emailing Bonnie Riedesel, Executive Director or refer to the RFP on the CSPDC website ( for detailed instructions regarding submission and for a description of the entity and records to be audited.

Proposals must be submitted no later than noon on Friday December 29, 2017. One electronic copy plus four (4) hard copies should be delivered to:

Central Shenandoah Planning District Commission
Bonnie Riedesel, Executive Director
112 MacTanly Place
Staunton, VA 24401

The CSPDC reserves the right to reject any, all or part(s) of responses. There is no expressed or implied obligation for the CSPDC to reimburse responding firms for any expenses incurred in preparing proposals in response to this request. CSPDC will select the proposal with the best overall value to the Commission.

Request for Proposal

FY16 Audit

FY17 Audit

Virginia Breeze Bus Line Launches

The Virginia Breeze, a new bus line along I-81 and I-66, launched December 1.  The Virginia Breeze, the program’s pilot route, connects travelers from Blacksburg to Washington, D.C. with multiple destinations in-between, including Lexington, Staunton, and Harrisonburg.
The Virginia Breeze features a modern 56-passenger coach with free Wi-Fi, in-seat power outlets, and other amenities, and provides a critical transportation connection between rural Virginia communities and the national bus network.  Customers can purchase Virginia Breeze tickets as well as access interline tickets for destinations beyond Washington, D.C. through Megabus.  The program is funded through the Federal Transit Administration’s 5311 Intercity Bus Program and administered by the Virginia Department of Rail and Public Transportation.

Braiding the Way Celebrates Completion of Outdoor Recreation Plan

In October, the steering committee for Braiding the Way for Outdoor Recreation in the Rockbridge Area celebrated the completion and endorsement of the Rockbridge Area Outdoor Recreation and Trail Plan.
The project, underway since 2015, has been a collaborative effort composed of key partners including Rockbridge Area Tourism, Rockbridge County, City of Lexington, City of Buena Vista, and representatives from government, educational, and community-based organizations.  The project was assisted by the National Park Service Rivers, Trails, and Conservation Assistance Program and a Rural Community Development Initiative Grant through USDA-Rural Development. CPSDC provided grant management, mapping, and staff support.
Moving forward, the steering committee will transition to the Rockbridge Area Outdoors Partnership which will serve as a coordinating entity and forum for continued collaboration, networking, project development, and promotion.  Twenty-eight organizations have committed to joining the Partnership.

Fields of Gold Featured in Series on WHSV

WHSV’s Claire Richardson recently produced a four-part series on the Fields of Gold Farm Trail that features farm trail members throughout our region titled Exploring the Fields of Gold Farm Trail. The series features many of the Fields of Gold members, including My Peeps Farm, Mount Crawford Creamery, Barren Ridge Vineyards, and Brothers Craft Brewing. Watch the series HERE.
WHSV Series

The Fields of Gold Farm Trail has also released a promotional video titled “Meet Our Farmers.” The video features the stories of multi-generational farming families and highlights the role of agritourism in the sustainability of their farms.  Spotlighting a mixture of Farm Trail members from the six-county, five-city region, the video includes insight from Shenandoah Valley historian Nancy Sorrells and a variety of regional “farm facts.”

A shorter video, “See You on the Fields of Gold Farm Trail,” debuted in July.  That video shows a family enjoying a fun-filled day on the farm trail, and highlights the convenient web and mobile-ready tools available for trip planning and navigating the farm trail. Both videos will be used to showcase the many ways visitors can have farm adventures in the Shenandoah Valley.