The Charc Board recently received a $10,000 grant from VCEDA. Second from left is owner Misti Ramey in this photo of the ribbon-cutting held to celebrate her new business in Wise. Photo courtesy of VCEDA.

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

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The Charc Board in Wise receives $10,000 grant from VCEDA

The Charc Board, a small business in Wise that sells charcuterie boxes and boards, has received a $10,000 seed capital matching grant from the Virginia Coalfield Economic Development Authority.

The shop’s offerings include selections of meats, cheeses, fruits and vegetables, breads, spreads and more, according to a news release announcing the grant. The shop also sells grab-and-go lunch items.

Misti Ramey said she used the grant to pay for plumbing needs at her Main Street location and other equipment and supplies. Ramey said future plans include developing a website and offering online ordering as an option.

The Charc Board projects five full-time and five part-time employees within three years, said Jonathan Belcher, VCEDA’s executive director/general counsel.

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Blue Ridge Institute highlights Franklin County history in new exhibit

The Blue Ridge Institute & Museum of Ferrum College recently opened a new exhibit highlighting Franklin County history: “Yesterday, Today, and Tomorrow: The Dorothy Cundiff Collection.”

A prominent businesswoman and local historian, Cundiff collected local photos, stories, memories and books about Franklin County. She also published a series of more than 40 booklets titled “Yesterday and Today.” The Cundiff family donated her extensive collection — including photographs, newspaper articles, bills, receipts, memos, books, pamphlets and antiques, with subjects covered ranging from local businesses to local genealogy — to the BRIM for preservation. 

“It is rare that the collections of a woman historian are gifted to museums. We are especially proud to add her work to our collections because it provides another perspective to our archives,” said Ariel Dalton, curator and archivist at the BRIM. 

Cundiff was the driving force behind community events including the Fun Festival and the annual Rocky Mount Christmas Parade.

The exhibit will be on display at the BRIM through the end of June. Museum studies students, including recent graduates Caleb Bailey and Kelsey Smith, played a significant role in planning and producing the exhibit. 

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Blue Ridge Parkway opens 2023 season Memorial Day weekend 

Blue Ridge Parkway campgrounds, picnic areas and visitor centers open with full services for the 2023 visitor season this weekend.  

Multiple road projects are underway along the Parkway this season. The Parkway website and road status page provide milepost-by-milepost status information with links to additional project information or detour maps. In addition to previously announced projects for a major paving project in northwest North Carolina and repairs to Price Lake dam bridge, visitors may experience intermittent or one-lane closures related to paving projects in some North Carolina overlooks, parking areas and picnic areas.   

A complete schedule of open facilities is also available on the Parkway’s website.  

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Forest Service announces updates for 2023 Bolar Mountain recreation season at Lake Moomaw

The George Washington and Jefferson National Forest is providing a renewed summer recreation season at Lake Moomaw starting this week.

Bolar Mountain campgrounds 1, 2 and 3 in Bath County will be open to the public starting May 24. Reservations are required and are available at The Bolar Mountain day use area, including the swim beach, will also open May 24.

Repairs were made earlier this year to the wastewater treatment plant that caused the 2022 closure; however, the plant still needs to complete commissioning to confirm it can fully process waste from the recreation area.

Portable restrooms will be available in campgrounds and day use areas. Standard restrooms will remain closed. Showers and dump stations will be open from 8 a.m. to 6 p.m. daily. Users are asked to conserve water and to limit showers to 5 minutes or less.

For more information, call the James River Warm Springs Ranger District at 540-839-2521, visit or go to Facebook ( or Twitter (

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State awards 10 grants to boost outdoor recreation tourism

Ten Virginia communities will receive up to $20,000 each to help launch new tourism programs to boost their outdoor recreation economies, the governor’s office announced.

The grants are through the Virginia Tourism Corporation’s DRIVE Outdoor grant program, which targets outdoor product development and entrepreneurial expansion, according to a news release.  

The grants will be used for development projects including buying new outdoor recreation equipment for rentals and outfitting opportunities, hosting events, and launching studies for outdoor recreation development and expansion.  

The grants were awarded to:

  • Bristol 
  • Charlottesville-Albemarle County 
  • Floyd County 
  • Giles County 
  • Harrisonburg 
  • Lexington-Rockbridge Area 
  • Nelson County 
  • Smithfield-Isle of Wight County 
  • Virginia’s Blue Ridge  
  • Waynesboro 

The next round of DRIVE Outdoor funding will open this summer.