News, views and musings from the Blue Ridge Mountains of Southwestern Virginia

Changing faces in Floyd County government

Changing faces in Floyd County government

Faces of Floyd County government will be gone from the scene by the end of 2015. Some will be replaced by familiar folks while others will have newer, and not as recognizable, ones when 2016 starts.

Stephanie Shortt left county government shortly before the end of 2014, moving on to become a juvenile and domestic relations judge. Eric Branscom, who lost an earlier attempt to take the job in 2007, won a three-way primary earlier this month and appears headed for a four-year term in a November election with no opponents.

Sheriff Shannon Zeman is retiring after many years in the department and three terms in the top job. He’s been a popular and effective sheriff but leaves after pissing off some hardcore Floyd County Republicans who didn’t like his endorsement of Democratic Senator Mark Warner for re-election in 2014. Read More…

Sounds of Chantilly Farm Bluegrass

Music from Meadows of Dan’s Sammy Shelor, Floyd’s The Wildmans and New River Valley’s Gravel Road Bluegrass accompany clips of the Chantilly Farms Bluegrass and BBQ Festival this weekend. Scenes also feature Rhonda Vincent, wearing a costume that seemed more tu-tu than dress and Junior Sisk. (Read More)


Please remember and honor those who gave the ultimate sacrifice to our nation. (Read More)

Chantilly Farms Bluegrass and BBQ 2015

The Fifth Annual Chantilly Farm Blugrass and BBQ Festival brought thousands to the sprawling landscape off Franklin Pike in Floyd County on Friday and Saturday of this three-day Memorial Day Weekend for listen to headliner Rhonda Vincent plus Meadows of Dan’s Sammy Shelor and Lonesome River Band, Junior Sisk and much more. (Read More)


In the good old Summertime…

Officially, the Memorial Day weekend that arrives a few days from now is the start of summer but the heat of summer, along with afternoon thunderstorms, is already on us. Read More…

That Good Old Mountain Dew

The Whitetop Mountain Band, minus spark plug Martha Spencer, who was performing in Richmond and leader Thorton Spencer who is ill, packed the house at The Floyd Country Store Saturday night for a dance and show. Read More…


Special athletes on a special day

Special athletes on a special day

Shooting high school sports is always special. Even more special is shooting a group of special athletes at the start of a Floyd County High School multi-team track meet Wednesday.  They tossed softballs and raced. They made a special day even more so. Many more photos in next week’s Floyd Press. Continue Reading


Branscom, Craig win GOP Convass

Branscom, Craig win GOP Convass

Interim Commonwealth’s Attorney Eric Branscom took the Republican nomination for election to the job in the GOP Canvass Saturday, easily defeating Harrison Schroeder and Travis Epes. Long-time Deputy Brian Craig won a tight race for Sheriff against Christiansburg police officer Doug Weddle 1359-1245. Weddle, Schroeder and Epes have conceded. Branscom took every district of the… Continue Reading


Brings people together

Brings people together

Floyd is a diverse area and that diversity is most visible in the music heritage that dominates the county and Southwestern Virginia.

I shot this photo on Locust Street on a Friday night in Floyd in 2007. It still is one of my favorites because it shows young and old and those of different lifestyles playing together.

The music brings people together. Continue Reading