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By concerts, events, fourth wave, hot lead singers of bands, music, norfolk, videos No Comments

It’s been almost ten years since my brother introduced me to Streetlight Manifesto, which has been hands down one of my favorite bands ever since. I’ve been lucky enough to see them in concert at least five times in NJ, Virginia and Maryland since 2004, two or three of those with my brother. Saturday night, I saw Tomas Kalnoky and his Streetlight cohorts for possibly the last time all together — or at least the last time in a long time — since they’re going on an indefinite hiatus when they finish up this tour.

Unfortunately, Stephen missed this go around because he’s out to sea, so while I don’t normally take the time to record videos of concerts with my phone, I did this time, so I could share some of them with him when he gets back.

The concert was amazing, but bittersweet because, let’s face it, whether they’re blaring their original songs, rocking TK’s old Catch-22 material, or covering Paul Simon tunes, they’re such ridiculously talented musicians. But who knows — maybe now there’s hope that BOTAR will someday release their second album, and in the meantime, I’ll be indulging in Toh Kay‘s toned down, acoustic versions of some of his best work — those are more my speed these days anyway. =)

Virginia International Tattoo

By events, music, norfolk No Comments

2010 VIT Finale C.Nate Kennison

Yesterday afternoon, a co-worker offered us last-minute VIP tickets to the Virginia International Tattoo — an event I’ve been wanting to attend for years. This particular tattoo has nothing to do with permanent ink markings, but everything to do with massed pipes and drums, military bands, and many other talented singers, dancers and performers from around the world. As part of the Virginia Arts Festival, the 2013 Virginia International Tattoo — comprised for more than 900 members from six different nations — will grace the Norfolk Scope with performances through Sunday.

Having spent many an autumn night in my lifetime marching with the band on a high school football field, as well as a solid week in college documenting and photographing the cadet drill team for a feature article, I have the utmost appreciation for the show I saw last night. My favorite numbers included the U.S. Air Force Heritage of America Band performing “In the Mood” fronted by the OzScot Australia Dance Team; the French Paratroopers Band executing some very snazzy dance moves as they played a tango; and the Band and Drill Team of His Majesty The King’s Guard impeccably marching and twirling their rifles in perfect time. I also really enjoyed all of the bagpipes and, of course, the ridiculously amazing massed band finale.

If you’re in the area this weekend, and you’re looking for something to do, the Virginia International Tattoo has shows tonight, tomorrow and Sunday. =)

Enjoy the weekend!

Virginia International Tattoo 2011, c. David Polston 101

Virginia International Tattoo, c. US Fleet Forces 02 040

All images courtesy of Virginia International Tattoo.

OpSail 2012

By boats, events, norfolk 4 Comments


Once every six to twelve years, OpSail comes along to celebrate a special occasion, and what with this year being the bicentennial of the War of 1812 and the writing of The Star-Spangled Banner, Hampton Roads welcomed ships from around the world into its ports for 12 days this June. It was all-out nautical extravaganza in downtown Norfolk a few Saturdays ago with tall ships from all over the world moored next to Waterside and Nauticus, flying colorful flags, and just looking plain awesome.

Many of these photos were taken aboard the Spanish ship Juan Sebastian Elcano — a four-masted topsail, steel-hulled schooner built in 1927. She is a training ship for the Royal Spanish Navy, and at 370 feet long, she is the third-largest tall ship in the world. And drop dead gorgeous, if I do say so myself.

OpSail has been making its way up the Eastern seaboard these last few weeks, and if you happen to be in the area, you can still catch the event in Boston from June 30 through July 5 and/or in New London, Connecticut from July 6 through 8. These magnificent ships from around the world are quite a sight to see, and they only come around once every several years.

This year marks the sixth OpSail event since the very first one, which was held as a tie-in with the New York World’s Fair in 1964. The last time OpSail came through Norfolk was in the year 2000, and while I didn’t live here yet, I was lucky enough to be in town for a few days visiting a friend, and I’ll never forget how fabulous the fireworks were. =)


















Let’s Do Lunch: Havana

By food, norfolk, restaurants One Comment


If you ever find yourself roaming the streets of downtown Norfolk, mouth watering, a little extra cash in your pocket, and in search of the perfect lunch, I think a mojito and a half order of bbq chicken nachos at Havana is one of the best choices you could make. The bronzed tuna wrap is pretty delicious, too. =)

It’s a little pricey, but so very authentic inside. I love the atmosphere, and I used to stop in for lunch at least once month when I worked downtown.

Nowadays, it’s more of a weekend splurge, or a quick stop for a bite of Cuban fare and a drink before a performance at Chrysler Hall or The Norva.

Havana is located at 255 Granby Street in Norfolk. They serve lunch and dinner Monday through Friday and dinner only on Saturday. Strangely, the restaurant has no website, but does have a rarely updated Facebook page.






Southern Belle

By fashion statements, norfolk, outfits, style, summer No Comments


H&M shirt, Urban Outfitters skirt (2004), Seychelles wedges, Betmar hat, Tory Burch sunglasses, Michael Kors bag

Do you like my floppy beach hat?

These photos are from a day my mom, J and I spent at the Norfolk Botanical Garden over Memorial Day weekend. I’ve been in Virginia Beach for almost seven years, and there’s still so many places around here I haven’t visited — this being one of them. I’m not normally much of a flower person, but the gardens were gorgeous, and I got some great photos.

I would totally post those photos, except I’ve been so busy out enjoying the summer festivities around here that I haven’t really felt like spending time inside on the computer… =)

I’m actually the furthest thing imaginable from a southern belle, but I kind of felt like one walking around the botanical garden in the sweltering heat in this girly outfit and huge hat.