David and Jennifer White are in the process of building Devils Fork Campground, not far from the Devils Bathtub in Scott County. The campground is expected to open this summer. Photo courtesy of VCEDA.

Here’s a roundup of news briefs from around Southwest and Southside. Send yours for possible inclusion to news@cardinalnews.org.

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New Scott County campground receives $10,000 VCEDA grant

The owners of Devils Fork Campground, which is expected to open this summer near the Devils Bathtub in Scott County, have received a $10,000 seed capital matching grant from the Virginia Coalfield Economic Development Authority.

Jennifer and David White will use the funding to dig a well for the campground, and to help pay for building a bathhouse, according to a news release announcing the grant.

The couple plans to initially create 10 primitive campsites, then build a one-bedroom cabin and offer yurt camping. As the campground continues to grow, a bathhouse will be constructed on the property as well. The campground will include fire pits, picnic tables and a community gathering place. A camp store and check-in station will also offer basic supplies and necessities, snacks and souvenirs.

The campground will be less than a mile from the entrance to the Devils Bathtub, on land where Jennifer White grew up.

The Devils Bathtub has been gaining in popularity, she said in the release; foot traffic during peak hiking months is estimated to be an average of 300 per day on the weekends, she said.

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NRV Food Assistance Directory now available

The Community Foundation of the New River Valley recently released its 2023-2024 NRV Food Assistance Directory.

The directory was created in collaboration with members of NRV Thrive, a network of agencies working to address food insecurity in the region, and aims to connect community members in need of food assistance to the programs providing this support.

It includes details of 53 food assistance programs in the counties of Floyd, Giles, Montgomery and Pulaski as well as the city of Radford. 

The directory is at cfnrv.org/thrive. To get involved with the Thrive initiative, contact the foundation at 540-381-8999 or cfnrv@cfnrv.org.

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Update, May 16: The Star City Sustainability talk scheduled for May 20 has been canceled.

Clean Valley Council hosts free talk about forest management

Roanoke’s Clean Valley Council will host a talk about forest management this week as part of its ongoing Star City Sustainability Series.

Dennis McCarthy of the Virginia Department of Forestry will lead a talk titled “Clearing Up Misconceptions About Forest Management.” It will be held from 2 to 4 p.m. May 20 on the Virginia Western Community College side of Fishburn Park in Roanoke.

McCarthy will talk about what foresters do and address preconceptions and misconceptions about clear-cutting and other forest management practices.

Register here for the free event. Meet in the Virginia Western parking lots 14-15, located near McNeil Drive at the southeast edge of the park. For a map, follow this link.

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Crooked Road announces youth music festival winners 

The Crooked Road hosted a Youth Music Festival and Competition on May 13 at the Southwest Virginia Cultural Center & Marketplace.   

More than $1,100 in cash prizes were awarded and more than 20 youth participated in the music competition. Prizes were given out for fiddle, guitar, mandolin, clawhammer banjo, bluegrass banjo, other (instruments, song and/or dance) and band.  

The winners included: 

Banjo/clawhammer: first, Margo MacSweeney, Floyd; second, Josiah Wilkerson, Roaring River, North Carolina; third, Silas Wilkerson, Roaring River, North Carolina. 

Banjo/bluegrass: first, Ayden Young, Roanoke; second, Berkley Stewart, Saltville; third, Josiah Wilkerson, Roaring River, North Carolina. 

Fiddle: first, Sam Wilkerson, Roaring River, North Carolina; second, River Smith, Johnson City, Tennessee; third, Hollace Oakes, Radford.

Guitar: first, Croft Wilson, Yulee, Florida; second, Berkley Stewart, Saltville; third, Pierce Workman, Boones Mill. 

Mandolin: first, Blane Young, Roanoke; second, Cort Workman, Boones Mill; third, Hollace Oakes, Radford.

Other: first, Naomi Childress, Big Stone Gap; second, Margo MacSweeney, Floyd; third, Hollace Oakes, Radford.

Band: first, Denim & Plaid; second, Denim Girls; third, Lucy & The Brothers Young.