A rooftop pool, squash courts and a dedicated yoga studio are just three of the amenities that members of the new ACAC in West Broad Village will be enjoying when the health club is completed at the end of 2012.
The club's management says it was attracted to the fast-growing Short Pump area, particularly West Broad Village, because it has the right mix of tenants. "The number of tenants has grown, and we are encouraged by the pace of development, both commercial and residential," says Chris Craytor, ACAC's vice president of development. "We felt that [businesses like] REI and Whole Foods were complementary to our business. There are also a lot of local businesses such as 3Sports and LaDifférence."
The Charlottesville-based operation started in 1984. It now maintains six facilities in Richmond, Charlottesville and West Chester, Pa., and has 38,000 members. Its massive 95,000-square-foot facility in Chesterfield includes 29,000 square feet of indoor tennis courts. The smaller West Broad Village club, now under construction, will top out around 58,000 square feet.
The new four-story building, located across from Whole Foods, will have group exercise facilities, a well-equipped fitness floor and an extensive indoor aquatics facility. "We are also proposing platform tennis on the roof," Craytor says, adding that the building is being designed by Antunovich Associates of Chicago.
From a health club perspective, ACAC is well known in its industry. "We've been on Club Industries' top 100 clubs for the past nine years," Craytor says of recognition by a trade journal, adding that he's excited about the new facility because it's a "great location for us. We're looking forward to opening up next year."
ACAC is just one of the new tenants at West Broad Village. Other new kids on the block include the third location of All Fired Up; plus Spirited Art, which will feature classes for people who want to learn the basics of acrylic painting; and two new eateries: The Halligan Bar & Grill and Bonefish Grill .
My Manakin Market Returns in May
The new year will also herald the second season for Chikn E.G.G.'s My Manakin Market in Manakin-Sabot. Even though this year's season ended in October, owner Lisa Dearden hopes to stage a holiday market. Up-to-the-minute news of her holiday plans can be found at chiknegg.com .
Dearden says she's "really pleased" with the success of the market's first year in operation. "We surpassed our goal for sales. We had over 50 participating vendors and a big selection of products that included pastured meats, eggs, candy, nuts, wine, artisan crafts, plants and live farm animals." Yes, she said farm animals. The market had rabbits, chickens, baby ducks and alpacas for sale. It also created the Critter Corner, where children could pet farm animals.
The 2012 market will run from the beginning of May through the end of October on Saturdays from 8 a.m. to noon at 68 Broad Street Road. In addition to the products it sells, the market will also feature live music and special events such as a recent health fair and live chef demonstrations.
Dearden also will expand the popular Barnyard Peeps Heyday, where kids from 6 to 16 have the opportunity to sell what they grow. "We want to focus on young farmers," she says.
Another novel event that will be returning is mutton bustin', where kids get to ride a giant sheep until they get bucked off. "That was really popular," Dearden says.
The market will also focus on traditional crafts, with knitting and crocheting demonstrations and hand spinners who will show people how to spin fiber.
Thanks to the big turnout this year, Dearden is considering opening the market year-round. "I had to get a year under my belt first," she says.
Benedictine's Move to Goochland
On Dec. 6, Goochland County residents will learn whether Benedictine College Preparatory will be granted approval by the Goochland Board of Supervisors to move from its North Sheppard Street location in the Fan to the Mary Mother of the Church Abbey on River Road. The Benedictine Society of Virginia currently owns the property.
In September, the school's attorney, Darvin Satterwhite, asked the Board of Supervisors to postpone the hearing so that he could address some "misinformation" that had shown up on a flyer distributed by opponents of the move, who cite concerns about added traffic, noise and the ability of the abbey's water and sewer system to handle an increase in use. "There's a lot of information being put out," says William E. Quarles Jr., chairman of the Goochland Board of Supervisors. "The information didn't speak the whole truth. When you don't dot all your I's and cross your T's, people get nervous."
Quarles points out that the abbey has its own sewage treatment plant. "The water has been vetted and evaluated, and it appears they have the water to do what they need to do," he says.
Approximately 200 people attended the September hearing, which sparked some heated discussions. James Eads, supervisor of the district that would house the school, urged the board to take a vote in September, but that idea was voted down.
Quarles says that the board will make sure everyone is in compliance before making any decisions. "We will hear the applicant present its point of view and then open it up for public [comments]," he says. "The board members will evaluate what has been stated."