Robious Corridor

The Eighth Day

Brian McCall

HelmetWhile I was playing football I learned a lot about life.  I learned very early on that there are three kinds of people in this world.  There are the spectators, there are the stars, and then, there are the linemen. 

The spectators in life do pretty much the same thing that the spectators do at a football game.  They watch the game and then they cheer or they criticize, making a whole lot of noise in the process.  When the team wins, they say, “We won!”  And when the team loses, they say, “They lost.”

The stars in life do pretty much the same thing that the stars do in a football game.  They are usually the players who get to touch the ball at some point in the game.  They score the touchdowns.  They make the big plays.  We all know them, because they are the most talked about players on the team.  The stars, many people think, determine if a team wins the game or loses the game.  When the team wins, they say, “I won!”  And when the team loses, they say, “We lost.”

The linemen in life do pretty much the same thing that the linemen do in a football game.  They are the ones that do what the spectators and the stars are not able to do.  The lineman do everything else.  The spectators make the noise.  But you can play a football game without the spectators.  The stars score the points.  But you can play a game without the stars too because the linemen will figure out a way to score the points.  You see, the linemen don’t care who scores the points.  All that the linemen want to do is win.  And when the team wins, they say, “We won!”  And when they lose, they say, “We lost.”  I am a lineman.  Brian McCall was a lineman too. 

I once had a coach who once played football before he became a Jesuit priest.  He had a different take on the creation story.  It went something like this, “…and on the seventh day the Lord rested because He knew on the eighth day He had to create people to do the hard work, and He called them linemen.”  That coach would always go on to say, “No one knows about that because the linemen didn’t care if anyone knew about them or not, they just cared about getting the job done.”

footballUnwilling to sit in the stands and watch the game of life, Brian had to get in the game.  To become a lineman you have to be strong.  So Brian started working to make himself strong.  You do not get strength.  Strength is built. It is built day after day. It takes a lot of sweat, a lot of effort, and a lot of pain.  Day after day after day. Until one day, Brian woke up and found that he was strong.  Strong enough to take the field.  He needed a team, though, so he joined the team at Bon Air Baptist Church.  Brian was a lineman.

Like all rookies, Brian made some mistakes.  Like all linemen, he learned from his mistakes.   He learned from the other linemen on his team too. That is how linemen learn. He learned what worked and he learned what didn’t.  He learned from the people who came before him. And he put what he learned into action when he spearheaded the charge to get the James River Campus of the Bon Air Baptist Church up and running.

When linemen find something that works for them, they not only keep doing it, they find ways to do it better.  So Brian helped to found Bridging RVA.  A local nonprofit group that helps those who need help the most.  He didn’t do that for fame.  Nor for fortune.  He did that because it was the right thing to do.  He did that, not because he could,  Brian did that because he should.  Brian did that because that is what linemen do.  They do the grunt work, the work no one else wants to do, the work that is required to make things happen.  They do the work that is required to win. That is what linemen do.

Work is not the only thing a lineman does.  Lineman teach too.  Old linemen show the new linemen the ropes.  They test them first to see if they have what it takes to be a lineman.  And if they pass the test, the teaching begins.  The old linemen lead by example and the young linemen follow.  Brian was an old lineman when he started a recovery house to help those young linemen who needed to be shown how it was done.  How to use the tools that God had given them to do the right thing.  No matter how hard it may be, a lineman does his job.  In the trenches.  In the mud. In the heat and in the cold. In the rain and in the snow.  When the other players leave the field for a rest, the linemen remain.  They grind on.  Working together to win.  Because that is what linemen do.

Brian McCallThe brotherhood that is formed among linemen is strong.  It lasts forever.  It transcends the team to include all linemen, because only another lineman can understand the struggle of the linemen.  They appreciate each other in world where their work goes unnoticed.  There is no hall of fame for linemen.  There are two reasons for that.  The first is that no self-respecting lineman would allow himself to be held above his brothers. The second reason is that there is no building large enough to house all of the linemen worthy of being in a hall of fame.  The only hall of fame Brian sought is the hall of fame that he is in right now.  Because that is where linemen go.

Football, like life, involves a great deal of pain.  Linemen are not judged by how pain affects them, they are judged by how it doesn’t.  They are expected to play through pain, like Brian did.  They do not do what they want to do, they do what needs to be done. They sacrifice their bodies for the good of the team.  In the name of victory.  For linemen, it is an honor to be on the field of play.  A hard fought and well-earned privilege.  An honor.  And only when a lineman is faced with no other choice, due to injury or due to ALS, will he ever leave that field.  And when he leaves that field the only thing that he will take with him is his honor, because he will have left everything else on the field.

Because on the eighth day God created the people to do the hard work, and He called them linemen.  Brian McCall was a lineman.  His honor he took with him.  Everything else, he gave to us.


A memorial service and reception to celebrate Brian’s life will be held at the James River Campus of Bon Air Baptist Church, 2440 Hancroft Dr., Midlothian, Va., today, April 9, at 3 p.m.

In lieu of flowers, Brian’s wish was for donations to be made to one of two memorial funds set up in his name at Bridging RVA or Bon Air Baptist Church James River Campus. These funds will be used to further advance good in our community in memory of Brian.

written by Tony Young

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Doggie Play Dates

Are They for Your Dog?

Dog DateListen carefully, do you hear what your dog is telling you? “Oooh, Mom, Barkley is out chasing a ball! Can I go play with him?” “Dad, take me to that park down the street so I can run and wrestle with Spot. Pleeease!” “Hey, I’m getting really bored with being sacked out here on the couch. Let’s get some exercise and go for a walk with Fluffy and her family!” Doggie play dates give your dog the socialization, entertainment, and exercise that he may crave, and many pet owners are embracing the trend.

Why Play Dates are Important

Play dates are important to dogs in the same way they are to children. They provide an outlet for excess energy, making your dog less likely to become bored and exhibit destructive behaviors, like chewing on the couch, rummaging through the trash, or even self-mutilation. This release of excess energy also makes your dog more willing to focus during important activities, like obedience training.

Especially important for younger dog, play dates provide socialization with other dogs and other people. Socialization The Importance of Socializing Pups is a key ingredient in raising a well-mannered, polite dog. Spending time with other dogs and people allow your canine the opportunity to share toys, become comfortable with you giving attention to other dogs, and learn appropriate behaviors around strangers and unfamiliar pets. Not only will you provide your dog with these lessons, but your dog will also learn behaviors directly from his playmates.

Time spent playing and exercising is also important in maintaining a dog’s health. Running about with a canine friend or participating in a game of fetch are beneficial in muscle development, preventing obesity, and keeping joints flexible and comfortable. Adequate playtime is also crucial for a pet’s happiness and mental health.

The Play Date

There are multiple types of doggie play dates to accommodate your preferences and your dog’s interests and abilities. From young to old, and playful to shy, there are play date opportunities for every dog who desires socialization with his canine peers.

For the lover of the outdoors or the dog who loves to run, there are fenced off-leash parks where a dog can freely play and romp. There are day care centers for dogs whose families are very busy with work and want a relaxed, tired dog when they get home. Day cares are also great for a special treat for your canine friend a couple times a week. Regularly having friends and their pets over to your home or dropping your dog off at a friend’s house for the day are other options. Even a stroll around the block with another friendly pooch can be a healthy outing for your dog.

If you don’t have many friends with dogs, or if you’re still looking for another dog whose personality matches your dog’s, the Internet can help you find your perfect play date partner. Websites such as,,, and all allow you to search for other pet lovers, advertise yourself and your dog, and search for the right playmate for your pooch.

Other possibilities for finding the right canine companion include searching locally. Ask your local veterinarian for some advice on finding a friend for your dog. Take your dog to pet stores, bars and malls that allow pets, parks, pet-friendly festivities, etc. and get to know some dogs in your community.

Is the Play Date Appropriate for Your Dog?

Not every play date is appropriate for every dog, and, unfortunately, not every dog is appropriate for interacting with other dogs. Before engaging your dogs with other pets, be sure to do an honest evaluation of your dog and the social situation you are considering. Every dog who is new to the play date scene should take small steps into this exciting, social life.

If your dog has exhibited aggressive behaviors or extreme submission or fear towards other dogs, it is not advisable to subject your dog to a play date until appropriate steps have been taken with a trainer and/or behaviorist.

A young puppy must be fully vaccinated and given a clean bill of health from a veterinarian before socializing with unfamiliar dogs. Start slowly with a pup. Don’t take him to a busy park and expect him to instantly know how to interact with the “big dogs”. Read this PetPlace article on introducing your puppy to other pets in the household to learn more about puppy for socialization Introducing a New Puppy to Other Pets. Beginning with a play date in the home with a friend’s dog may be an ideal start for a pup. Be very careful if a small pup is playing with a large dog, as the large dog can easily, inadvertently injure the puppy.

A geriatric or an unhealthy dog should also not be expected to socialize in large groups or stressful, extremely active situations. Short walks around the block or simply chewing on a toy in the comfort of the home with another less active dog may be all your dog needs to keep him happy and enjoying his life. Some inactive dogs may also enjoy going to the park and relaxing on a bench with his owner, watching the other pets.

Active, healthy dogs are the best candidates for the more active, busy social situations. Day cares, a park full of other dogs, and pet-related festivities (such as a 5K race or a fund-raising parade) may be the perfect play date to entertain and exercise an energetic, well-behaved dog. It is important that you are confident in your dog’s obedience skills before subjecting him to a challenging, social situation such as these.

You Will Enjoy It Too!

Not only will your dog thank you for providing him time to spend with his doggie friend, but YOU will also find pleasure in these activities. Spending time with animals will decrease your blood pressure, heart rate, and stress levels. Play dates can be the perfect relaxation tool after a long day at work. If engaging in exercise with your dog, your health will be further benefited. Along with the canine companionship, these activities will also provide you with new human friends who share your love of dogs. So, do something nice for your dog and yourself, and book a doggie play date. You might find that it becomes just as much your play date as it is for your dog!

written by Renae Hamrick, RVT

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Yes, You Can Have Bangs If You Have Curly Hair

And Here’s How

It’s all in the cut.

BangsIf we had a dollar for every time we heard someone say, “I look horrible with curly hair bangs,” then we’d have quite the savings account. No doubt, styling bangs can be a bit difficult. And when your hair is naturally curly, that may make getting your fringe to do exactly what you’d like even more frustrating.

But if there’s anything we’ve learned after seeing an explosion of curls on the runways at New York Fashion Week, it’s that you can have bangs with curly hair.

Stylist and founder of Ri Ci haircare line Ricky Pennisi is a professional whose work embodies the belief that natural waves and curves should be embraced.

“I’ve always said curls are sexy,” Pennisi told The Huffington Post. “I’ve seen so many great hair role models for women, like Zendaya, Shakira, Lorde, Beyoncé. Rihanna and Tori Kelly. All of these women were born with beautiful curly hair and have been rocking it.”

There are three things Pennisi says you need to pull off curly-hair bangs without a hitch:

Find a stylist who understands how to cut and style curly hair.

Too many times with wavy, curly and coily hair, the curls have no room to move or form and wind up just hanging, which causes frizz. So Pennisi developed his signature cutting technique to correct this — it’s based on the hair weight and density and not the curl pattern. He adds, “Since the ‘Ri Ci Cut’ focuses on each section and base individually, it gives me the advantage to shape the hair so that it has a natural movement that enhances the natural curl.”

For square-shaped faces … Pennisi says heavy bangs will help to soften the face and create a dramatic look that focuses on the eyes. Just ask your stylist to make your curly bangs more feathery and longer on the sides, but keep the length just below the eyebrows.

For round-shaped faces … Your bangs should be graphic, thick and fall just above the eyebrows. According to the professional, the right bang cut will create the illusion of a longer face.

For oval-shaped faces … You have a bit more freedom to experiment with shape. As a rule of thumb, Pennisi says curly bangs that fall right below the brow bone will accentuate the face and play up feminine features.

For heart-shaped faces … A side-swept bang will prevent the top from appearing too heavy. Pennisi also prefers to cut depending on which side his client naturally parts their hair.

When it comes to curly hair, the key is hydration.

Just like your body, Pennisi says your hair craves moisture. “Think of your hair as a sponge. It can only hold a certain amount of water in it,” he explains. “If you fill your hair with hydrating products, you satisfy your hair’s thirst and prevent it from getting it outside.”

Pennisi recommends using sulfate-free, water-based styling creams and gels that will moisturize and enhance curls, while eliminating frizz. “Sulfates will strip your hair’s natural oil, creating flyaways and even split ends,” he says.

Invest in a diffuser.

No need to spend a fortune on this hair dryer attachment, as Pennisi believes a simple, round one will enhance natural waves and curls by 30 percent without making locks frizzy.

For a no-heat option, when your hair is 80 percent air dried, the hair pro suggests applying a product like Styling Gel and twisting your hair around your finger to create small curls. Pin the curl to the top of your hair with a clip or bobby pin loosely. Allow your hair to completely dry naturally, take out and shake out your curls gently.

written by Dana Oliver

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Fantastic Sams


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Fantastic Sams Robious Corridor Reader Special Offer

$8.99 haircuts for men, women and children

Saturday and Sunday only in April

Cannot combine with any other offers or discounts

Long or thick hair is extra

Celebrate their first year under new management!

Offer good at Fantastic Sams at Belvedere and Robious location only.











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Robious Corridor

6th Annual Virginia Hops and Barley Festival

Powhatan Rotary Club

Robious CorridorThe Powhatan Rotary Club and Three One One Productions are at it again this year. 

The 6th Annual Virginia Hops and Barley Festival is a go.  As the final details are being wrapped up we wanted our readers to be able to…

SAVE THE DATE – Saturday, May 7th

TIME: 1p-7p

PLACE: Historic Malvern Estate, located in Chesterfield County, just off of 288.

This event features over 30+ craft beers, as well as many food vendors, Robious Corridorcraft vendors, bands, kids area, VIP and more. 

This event is always well attended and is likely to sell out.

Interested in becoming a vendor at this event?





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acac Midlothian

acac MidlothianIt seems that for many busy families, dinnertime can become a frantic race to get something on the table between sports practices, music lessons, and homework. Here are a few ways to take chicken and turn it into tasty and quick meals. Remember to cook it once and use it twice.

-Mix chunks of chicken with roasted red peppers (from a jar), black beans, quinoa, cilantro, lime juice, and avocado.

-Try chicken with Barilla Plus pasta, prepared pesto and edamame or peas.

-A slow cooker salsa chicken is nice to have ready at the end of the day. Just combine 2 lbs. of chicken with 1 cup of salsa, 1 cup of diced tomatoes, 2 Tbs. taco seasoning, diced onions(1 cup), celery (1/2 cup), and shredded carrots (1/2 cup), and 3 Tbs. reduced fat sour cream. Pur everything in and add about 1/2 cup water. Cook on low for 6-8 hours.

-Even a whole grain wrap with scrambled eggs, chicken, cheddar cheese, spinach, and tomato can be filling and fast.

Try to avoid the temptation to order pizza or fast food on those busy evenings. A few minutes of planning can keep the whole family healthier. ‪#‎acacNutritionTip‬

written by Donna Wheeler, acac nutritionist



acac Midlothian

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acac MidlothianBASEBALL

Trinity Episcopal 6 Benedictine 5
St. Christopher’s 5 Collegiate 4
Atlee 5 Lee-Davis 4
Douglas Freeman 11 J.R. Tucker 1
Maggie Walker GS 13 Thomas Jefferson 1
FUMA 20 Fuqua 10
Walsingham Academy 5 Tidewater Academy 1
Prince George 9 Matoaca 2
Steward 10 Blessed Sacrament Huguenot 0
Varina 5 Henrico 2



Nansemond-Suffolk Academy 10 Collegiate 1
Deep Run 3 Mills Godwin 2
Douglas Freeman 5 J.R. Tucker 4
Varina 10 Henrico 8
Maggie Walker 28 Thomas Jefferson 0
Caroline 12 Washington and Lee 2
Hanover 4 Patrick Henry 3
Lee-Davis 2 Atlee 0 (9)




Midlothian 5  Clover Hill 4
Collegiate 14 Blue Ridge 7
St. Christopher’s 18 Benedictine 4
Cosby 15 Manchester 6
Atlee 18 Lee-Davis 3



Midlothian 21 Clover Hill 3
Trinity Episcopal 15 Bishop Sullivan 9
Collegiate 10 St. Anne’s-Belfield 9
Cosby 18 Manchester 4
Glen Allen 16 Hermitage 0
Atlee 20 Lee-Davis 1




Glen Allen 0 Hermitage 0
Deep Run 2 Mills Godwin 1
Douglas Freeman 4 J.R. Tucker 1



Monacan 1 James River 0
Glen Allen 9 Hermitage 0
Mills Godwin 1 Deep Run 0
Douglas Freeman 8 J.R. Tucker 0







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Dogtopia Chesterfield


Dogtopia Weekend Weather


A slight chance of rain and snow showers before 11am, then a slight chance of rain showers between 11am and 2pm. Mostly sunny, with a high near 51. Breezy, with a west wind 11 to 20 mph, with gusts as high as 31 mph. Chance of precipitation is 20%.


weatherSaturday Night

Mostly clear, with a low around 28. Northwest wind 7 to 13 mph, with gusts as high as 21 mph.



Sunny, with a high near 54.


weatherSunday Night

Partly cloudy, with a low around 38.



Partly sunny, with a high near 71.


weatherMonday Night

Mostly cloudy, with a low around 56.



Showers likely. Cloudy, with a high near 72. Chance of precipitation is 60%.


weatherTuesday Night

A chance of showers. Mostly cloudy, with a low around 46. Chance of precipitation is 50%.



Mostly sunny, with a high near 62.


weatherWednesday Night

Partly cloudy, with a low around 42.



Mostly sunny, with a high near 61.



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Ace Glass 

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Matoaca Elementary’s Running Club is getting ready for the Virginia 529 Kids Run sponsored by Sports Backers. The one-mile event starts at 8 a.m. April 9. For details, call 590-3100.


Middle and high school students will demonstrate enthusiastic problem-solving and teamwork during the annual STEAM Expo 8 a.m.-1 p.m. April 9 at the Career and Technical Center @ Hull. The event is free and open to the public. STEAM (which stands for science, technology, engineering, art and math) has exploded across Chesterfield County Public Schools, causing the annual STEAM fair to split into two events: the STEAM Expo on April 9 and an event in March for elementary students. New this year is a performing arts visual challenge. This “Stylin’ Face Off” challenges high school teams to create a contemporary Greek god or goddess — including costume, makeup, hair and character analysis — for a commercial. More information is available here:



Spring Run Elementary will recognize two Students of the Year at 3 p.m. April 12 in the school cafeteria. For more information, call 639-6352.

Recorder concert

Spring Run Elementary fourth-graders will perform on recorders at 6 p.m. April 12 in the school cafeteria. For more information, call 639-6352.

Field trip

Woolridge Elementary kindergarten classes will visit Lewis Ginter Botanical Garden 9:30 a.m.-1 p.m. April 12. For more information, call 739-6330.

Testing is Table Talk’s timely topic for April

Helping your child prepare for tests is April’s topic for Table Talk: Meals With Meaning. Whether you have a third-grader taking SOLs or a high schooler taking the SAT or a student somewhere in between, parents will learn strategies to help children succeed by attending one of these Table Talk sessions: 6-8 p.m. April 12 at Clover Hill High or 6-8 p.m. April 14 at Meadowbrook High. Table Talk is always free and includes dinner and activities for children ages 5-12. Online registration is now open: Registration closes at 8 a.m. April 11, but space is limited so do not wait until the last minute to claim your space at Table Talk. For more information, email or call 748-1781.

Special Education Advisory Committee

The Special Education Advisory Committee seeks to inform and involve parents in special education matters that affect more than 7,000 students with disabilities in Chesterfield County Public Schools. The committee will meet 5-6:30 p.m. April 13 to discuss Medicaid waivers. The committee meets at the Career and Technical Center @ Hull, 13900 Hull Street Road. Enter through Door 1 (facing Hull Street Road). Call 639-8918 for details.

Kindergarten registration day

Every Chesterfield County elementary school will register incoming kindergartners 9 a.m.-7 p.m. April 14, so parents should take their children to the elementary school they are zoned to attend. For more information, go to


Jacobs Road Elementary students in grades 3-5 will hear a performance by the Richmond Symphony 9-10 a.m. April 14. For more information, call 674-1320.

Field trip

Curtis Elementary fifth-grade classes will visit Washington, D.C., on April 14. The students will leave the school at 7 a.m. and return at 5 p.m. During their D.C. visit, they will drive by the Capitol, tour the Museum of Natural History and take a walking tour of the monuments. For more information, call 768-6175.

Go Nuts for Reading

Alberta Smith Elementary students and Ecoff Elementary students who read eight books and returned their bookmarks will attend a Richmond Flying Squirrels game free 6-9:30 p.m. April 15. Also, they will parade with Nutzy around the field before the game starts. For more information, email about Alberta Smith Elementary or email about Ecoff Elementary.


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