Voter in training//
Zahria Blocker, 17 months, accompanies her grandfather, Levonne Johnson, to the voting precinct on Tuesday so he could cast his ballot in the primary election. The youngster is getting early lessons on the importance of voting. Location: 31st Street Baptist Church in the East End.
Natalie Parker and her Labradoodle, Charlie Parker, have Dogwood Dell all to themselves. But that will soon change as the 61st Festival of Arts moves into full swing. The festival will open the summer season 8 p.m. Sunday, June 18, with a show featuring the Richmond Men’s Chorus. The season will continue with 18 more free programs featuring popular Richmond musical performers, dance troupes, gospel singers and more. The biggest show will be held Tuesday, July 4, featuring holiday fireworks. The city-sponsored festival will wrap up on Aug. 18 with a show featuring indie rocker Janet Martin. The full schedule can be found on the city’s website, www.richmondgov.com, under the Parks, Recreation and Community Facilities page.
Daylily in the East End
Daddy boot camp // Expectant fathers get lessons on fatherhood during a Boot Camp for New Dads last Saturday at Chippenham Hospital in South Side. Sponsored by the Relationship Foundation of Virginia, the session provided dads-to-be with practical tips from new dads and their youngsters on a host of things, including how to change and dress a baby. Top left, Kenneth Jackson Jr. of Midlothian, holding his 7-month-old son, Nasir, serves as an “expert” during the session.
Jeff Duresky of Midlothan, right, shows off the outfit he will put on his daughter Sansa, 7 months, to dads-to-be Jarrod Loadholt, left, of Washington and Ricky Patel of Glen Allen.
The boot camp has trained more than 1,000 fathers to date.
Riding with Pride //
More than 100 Richmonders board buses last Sunday outside Diversity Richmond in North Side to head to the national Equality March for Unity and Pride in Washington. The march on the National Mall mobilized LGBTQ community members, an array of groups and their supporters seeking to address issues of discrimination and violence against gay individuals. Events also were held in more than 100 cities across the nation in support of the rights and safety of marginalized people. The march came on the first anniversary of the Pulse nightclub massacre in Orlando, where more than 49 people were killed. Several of the survivors participated in the Washington event.
Pet benefit //
People and their furry friends enjoy FETCH a CURE’s 10th Annual Pets on Parade Benefit & Auction last Friday at Plant Zero in South Side. The charity auction raises money for the organization’s mission to further pet cancer awareness, education and treatment. The group also provides financial assistance to help families pay for life-saving treatments for pets diagnosed with cancer. Above, April, a pitbull mix, dressed in a colorful tutu for the occasion.
Pet benefit // Bowie gets a treat from his human handler, Brenda Gentry, as the event starts.
Pet Benefit // Kevin Epps peruses the silent action offerings with his black Labrador, Noell.