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    River Creek & Lansdowne
    RIVER CREEK/LANSDOWNE: New golf pro at River Creek
    Golf pro Mike Barillo began his tenure Feb. 25 as director of golf at the River Creek Club. Barillo is originally from Hornel, N.Y. He was in the professional golf program at Ferris State University and has been the assistant pro at the Congressional Country Club in Maryland. He was also head pro at Argyle Country Club in Silver Spring.

    After 16 years there, he decided to start a golf academy. He brings management and teaching experience to River Creek.

    Winter reading

    The River Creek book clubs have been active this winter – a good time to settle in by the fireplace with a Kindle or a regular book. The Book Club for Blondes – even though some members are non-blonde – have been reading Ken Follett’s latest book, “The Edge of Eternity.”

    One member commented that the book is quite ‘graphic.’ Still it’s a typical Follett offering, a book of 1,000 pages. Another club has just finished “The Boys in the Boat,” a story bout nine Americans and their epic quest for gold at the 1936. Bea Snyder says they plan to “go back to the classics in March to read 'A Pair of Blue Eyes' by Thomas Hardy.”

    Pam Johnson of the Between the Covers Book Club reports that they kicked off the winter season by reading holiday classic stories, “A Christmas Carol,” “The Chimes” and “The Cricket on the Hearth,” all by Charles Dickens. Their selection for last month was “The Immortal Life of Henrietta Locks” by Rebecca Skoot, the story of a cancer patient whose tissue was taken by a doctor for research that resulted “in benefiting everyone who’s taken modern medications.”


    A number of River Creek residents obtained visas for entry into Palm Desert, Calif. In doing so they must adapt quickly to local customs.

    For example, the speed limits are posted in minimums. When the temperature drops to 70 degrees, local folks put on heavy coats to go with their shorts. A typical tiled roof house is no more than 8-feet-high and spreads out over an acre-and-a-half. The servers in one restaurant frequently interrupt their serving to blurt out operatic arias.

    In and Out Burger is one of the most popular restaurants where people wait in long lines for their meals.

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    RIVER CREEK/LANSDOWNE: Dialogues of Discovery
    One of the many Valentine's Day offerings at Cracker Barrel is Sterling. Times-Mirror/Joe Motheral
    The Howard Hughes Medical Institute at its Janelia Research Campus in Lansdowne will have its next lecture at 7 p.m. Wednesday, Feb. 18 with light refreshments available at 6:30 p.m. The Chemistry of Color will be presented by Janelia group leader Luke Lewis who will, “discuss how scientists are revisiting the chemistry of color to transform old dyes into new imaging agents to illuminate complex biological systems.”

    The HHMI reports that, “Synthetic colors are everywhere: in our homes, clothing, and food. Synthetic dyes were first discovered in the 19th century and laid the foundation for the modern chemical industry.”

    These lectures are held quarterly in an auditorium that usually rapidly fills up. Admission is free. To obtain a ticket contact Margaret Oriot at 571-209-4332 or at .(JavaScript must be enabled to view this email address).

    The sugar free documentary

    Last Wednesday evening, Stephanie Manning of River Creek and her cohort Anne Flam along with Dr. Martha Calihan of the Integrative Family Medicine Center in Leesburg, organized the showing of the documentary, “Fed Up” at Ida Lee Park, a movie that emphasizes the drawbacks of eating too much sugar. Leesburg Mayor Umstattd made opening remarks to an audience of over 200 people.

    For most people it was an educational journey, for one it “educates as to how your body processes different types of food differently.”

    Dr. Calihan favorably commented about the “large turnout and the number of people interested in whole foods.”

    With farm products available prior to the showing, she said that people were surprised at how “simple farm products” can provide a wholesome, tasty meal. She explained that the food we eat has a medicinal function.

    Valentine's Day

    Would St. Valentine have approved of the proliferation of flowers, candy and cards in his name? He may have blushed with embarrassment or stepped up on a pedestal and proclaimed it a day of romance.

    History provides us with an account that he was a clergyman who performed weddings for soldiers in Roman times when it was forbidden by the Emperor.

    In search of a valentine, I went to the novelty gift shop at the Cracker Barrel restaurant. I found Roscoe, a small stuffed creature clutching an heart shaped object. He seemed so much at home in the gift shop that I somehow managed to resist the urge to buy him. Happy Valentine’s Day.

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    RIVER CREEK/LANSDOWNE: Martinis Matter to benefit Adler Center
    The 10-year run of the Daffodil Ball designed by Dr. and Mrs. Jack Fox raised sufficient funds to build a Capital Hospice clinic. For the Foxes and many others, the dream became a reality last year with the opening of The Adler Center in Loudoun County off Route 50 on the Van Metre Campus in Stone Ridge.

    With the Daffodil Ball now a thing of the pasteam became a reality oney to build what was then re Janet Fox says, “If you are like most of us, we miss the fun and camaraderie that we all had working together on the Daffodil Ball.”

    Now that the Adler Center is a reality, the Martinis Matter event at the River Creek Clubhouse on Jan. 30 from 5:30 to 9 p.m., hosted by Laurie Tansey and Felicia Kettler of Capital Caring, will offer an opportunity to help defray the center’s operating costs. There will be raffle prizes and the ultimate: Daffotini that will be concocted by guest bartenders Kevin Conley, Ginger Wassum and Tom Reed.

    “Fed Up” documentary

    The “Fed Up” documentary will be shown at the Ida Lee Recreation Center at 6:30 p.m. Feb. 4 following a farmers’ market at 5:30 p.m. Free tickets are available at The e.vent is sponsored by Inova, Leesburg Parks and Recreation and Wegmans, based on an initiative by River Creek’s Stephanie Manning and Anne Flam who promote healthy eating habits.

    Lansdowne Golf Pro

    I recently met with Craig Forgash, 15 years a professional golfer and the club’s director of golf and instruction at Lansdowne Resort. He discussed the three golf courses at the resort and he expresses an interesting concept for golfers who are always eager for tips on improving their swing. I know it’s hard to imagine golf this time of year with icy conditions and January’s opposition to the game. Maybe golfers can take heart that in six weeks or so winter will begin to loosen its grip and golf courses will be more receptive than they are now.

    “The importance of a neutral, fundamentally sound setup position cannot be overstated. If your body is not aligned properly, it is impossible to create efficient movement because your body has to compensate for the lack of balance and stability,” Forgash said.

    He added something about “unnecessary movements” leading to inconsistency and frustration. Now I know what caused me to take refuge in a vocabulary punctuated by expletives.

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    RIVER CREEK/LANSDOWNE: Fundraiser for the Leesburg Volunteer Fire Co.
    RIVER CREEK/LANSDOWNE: Martinis Matter
    RIVER CREEK/LANSDOWNE: Post script 2014
    RIVER CREEK/LANSDOWNE: Martinis that Matter
    RIVER CREEK/LANSDOWNE: Tree lighting
    RIVER CREEK/LANSDOWNE: Gifts of the season
    RIVER CREEK/LANSDOWNE: Driving in deer country
    RIVER CREEK/LANSDOWNE: Turkey trotters
    RIVER CREEK/LANSDOWNE: The annual art show
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