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The Scoop: Week 30, 2012

This week: Olympic opening, nicotine-stained money, RVA Prince tributes + more.

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NOTE: The Scoop, Style Weekly's RVA insider newsletter is puiblished on Thursdays. The dates and times mentioned in the text reflect this. To have the Scoop delivered to your inbox every week, sign up here.

“If the vote doesn’t give us the results we’ve been working for … off come the gloves!!!” -- A posting on the Jay Must Stay Facebook page supporting ousted executive director and co-founder Jay Ipson, whose future at the museum will be decided by the board tonight.

HELLO: You might have been forced to marry a cow, Ngurah Alit, but at least you’ve learned a valuable lesson in love. If only Robert Pattinson could have been spared such heartbreak. Quote from the archives, September 2011: “It’s Twitter’s fault. If this website didn’t exist, I’d be in peace.” … Or maybe you’d rather target Facebook? Trending on Twitter in Richmond today is the hashtag: #5reasonsIHateFacebook. Here’s an idea: Unplug it all and go listen to some Bruce Hornsby. And that, you might say, is “The Way It Is.”

LIGHTING THE TORCH: The Summer Olympics in London start tomorrow. Athletes with Richmond connections include James River High School and University of Richmond graduate Shannon Taylor in field hockey; Collegiate graduate Nina Ligon, playing for Thailand on the equestrian team; Richmond native Reid Priddy in volleyball; former VCU standout Quanitra Hollingsworth, playing women’s basketball for Turkey; and James River High School graduate Kellie Wells in women’s hurdling. More on those athletes and other Virginia connections from the Times-Dispatch’s Paul Woody. … Here’s our interview with Wells before she left for London. … And in case you’re wondering what it is that gives Olympic athletes an edge, here’s one scientific explanation of how the brains of elite athletes are different from mere mortals’.

WHERE THERE’S SMOKE, THERE’S PROFIT: The Landmark Theater will become the Altria Theater, with the parent company of Philip Morris USA giving $10 million for a renovation of the 85-year-old venue. Last week Scott Bass explored where the rest of the money is coming from. Now columnist Jack Lauterback asks, should we feel morally conflicted about accepting nicotine-stained cash? His answer: Take everything you can get: “Until Puppy Dog and Ice Cream Inc. decides to start bankrolling projects and giving out hundred-dollar handshakes like the smooth operators do at Big Tobacco, does this city, or any other entity, really have a choice not to accept its money?” Tell me what you think.

HOTEL STORIES: “From its elegant opening celebrations in 1929 until the years just before its demise and closing in 1988, the John Marshall was the hotel in Richmond. … Its fascinating story provides a lens through which to glimpse Richmond's intriguing political, economic and particularly racial 20th century history.” Edwin Slipek’s cover story explores how some of the racial struggles of the 20th century, from Oliver Hill to Martin Luther King to Doug Wilder, intersected at this Richmond landmark.

JAY IPSON VOTE: The board of the Holocaust Museum is set to vote tonight on whether ousted executive director and co-founder, Jay Ipson, may continue his work with the museum in an emeritus role. … Although a rally was planned outside the museum, Ipson asked that supporters not attend, according to a posting on the Facebook group Jay Must Stay.

THE OTHER GUYS: Journalists often work to localize news that happens elsewhere to make coverage more relevant and tap into broader discussion. And social media adds new and fast ways of connecting with viewers and readers. But sometimes efforts can move too quickly or collide. After the Aurora, Colo., shootings last Friday, NBC-12’s Twitter feed caught some flak for asking followers about security changes at local theaters. A different spin from WRIC-TV 8’s tweet at 5:42 a.m.: “#RVA, are you having second thoughts about catching the new Batman movie this weekend? @LMorris8News is live with reaction at the theater.” Outraged responses included “u are disgusting,” “This is the dumbest thing I’ve ever read,” and “using a tragedy for a bit to get twitter followers?” In reply, @8News wrote: “We’re not trying to spark fear, but tragedy raises concerns over safety at the movies.” How should local news outlets’ Twitter feeds engage followers in discussion about such news? Let me know here.

IN RADIO LAND: Cox Media group is selling K-95, 103.7 The River, 96.5 KLR and Hot 100.9, among its stations in several markets across the country, in part citing a new corporate strategy to focus on larger radio markets. … K-95’s Countryfest on Sunday features Darius Rucker, Colt Ford and Corey Smith. … The band Bush is playing at Capital Ale House on Monday for an audience of only 200. But the only way to go is to win tickets from 102.1 The X. … Happy birthday to Q94’s music director and nighttime jock Chris Kash, who celebrates today, and to Kevin Begley, music director and afternoon jock at 103.7 The River, who celebrates Sunday. Trivia: Both are natives of Massachusetts.

SPEAKING OF SPOKESMEN: I first met Taylor Thornley when she sat in during an interview with then-candidate for governor, Bob McDonnell. She went on to serve as his deputy director of communications. Starting Aug. 2 she’s going back on the road as director of communications for Bill Bolling’s gubernatorial campaign. … As for McDonnell’s current communications director, Tucker Martin, he’s engaged: In his daily newsletter, Politico’s Mike Allen writes: “His bride-to-be is Emily Kennedy, native of Roanoke. The two met in Richmond. The word is that the best man might well be the groom’s trusted dog Blue. That is unconfirmed. They are just now planning their wedding. Perhaps late fall. (hat tip: Tim Murtaugh)”

THREE QUESTIONS: 1) How can Richmond keep these three dreary spots from zapping the life out of downtown?2) Why did this Shockoe Bottom business owner become featured in Mitt Romney's campaign?3) How does the state stiff Richmond on the money it owes?

EATING AND DRINKING: Craving a little taste of the Caribbean? Restaurant reviewer Matthew Freeman shares his three local picks for enjoying the flavors of the islands. … Deveron Timberlake has more on a new Italian spot in Church Hill. “Everything is made from scratch and it’s all fresh,” says Michael Calogerakis, who opened Anthony’s on the Hill with Adrian Burton in July. … More than 15 restaurants are offering prix fixe menus as part of Richmond.com’s Sampling Shockoe restaurant week, which closes out on Sunday.

HAIL TO THE PRINCE: Several performing arts groups are paying tribute to Prince this weekend, kicking off with “The Purple Party: Under the Cherry Moon.” That’s Friday night at Wonderland with doors at 9, movie at 10:30. Richmond Filmroast promises entertaining commentary during the film. And then Richmond Burlesque Babies picks things up Saturday at the Richmond Triangle Players with a two-part show: “The Purple Mixtape Vols. 1 and 2”: “You grew up with the music which still resonates to this day. Prince, The Revolution, Morris Day & The Time, Vanity 6, Apolonia 6, Shelia E, Sheena Easton, the list goes on and on. See RVA’s rebel burlesque troupe take on the songs in their own sexy style….” Here’s a video preview.

COMIC STRIP ISSUE: This is the final weekend we’re accepting entries for our annual Comic Strip Issue. Send us your take on what’s funny -- or tragically funny -- about Richmond, and we’ll feature the best work in a special Style Weekly cover story. The winner also lands a biweekly cartoonist gig with us through the end of 2012. Deadline July 30. Find contest details here.

SELLING DOWNTOWN RVA: Venture Richmond and RVA Creates are seeking entries in a 30-second television commercial contest that offers a top prize of $2,000. They’re looking for original ads that spotlight downtown and drive people to visit its attractions. Finalists will work with professionals to fine-tune their spots. You can find all the details here.

GIVEAWAYS: We run giveaways each week exclusively for our newsletter subscribers. For your chance at tickets to RVA music, shows and other free stuff, sign up here to receive the Scoop in your inbox each Thursday.

WEEKEND ASSIGNMENTS:

1. Hear Bruce Hornsby tickle the ivories at Innsbrook After Hours. (From the Style Weekly archives: our 2006 cover story on the Grammy winner.)

2. Get out of town: Alison Krauss, Jackson Browne, Drive-By Truckers and more at FloydFest.

3. Laugh at the unrehearsed and unexpected with West End Comedy Improv at HATTheatre.

4. Watch Firehouse Theatre steam things up with a new version of "The Rocky Horror Show.”

5. Catch the closing weekend of Richmond Shakespeare’s “The Merry Wives of Windsor.”

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