The Virginia Delegation of LGAC from left to right: Andria McClellan, Ruby Brabo, Richard Baugh, and Jasmine Gore

The Virginia delegation of the Local Government Advisory Committee to the Chesapeake Executive Council was pleased to host its first ever bus tour entitled Wandering Virginia’s Waterways last week! Virginia LGAC members: Richard Baugh, Councilmember, City of Harrisonburg, Ruby Brabo, Supervisor, King George County, Jasmine Gore, Mayor, City of Hopewell, and Andria McClellan, Councilmember, City of Norfolk, hosted the event that was also staffed by the Alliance for the Chesapeake Bay and funded by the National Fish and Wildlife Foundation (NFWF).

Twenty-eight Virginia local elected officials and a series of invited guests traveled from the Central Virginia areas to the Northern Neck/Middle Peninsula regions to explore the Chesapeake Bay’s Watershed. Participants had the opportunity to:

  • Visit the Potomac River Fisheries Commission to learn more about the economic impact of fisheries in Virginia and the collaborative management that is required to maintain a robust fishery relationship between Maryland and Virginia in regards to the Potomac River.
  • Explore the innovative and restorative practice of incorporating living shorelines, which was demonstrated by Westmoreland State Park and Longwood University’s Hull Springs Farm. These natural coastlines aid in the impact of erosion, stabilize sediment run-off, and create a safe habitat for neighboring wildlife.
  • Experience oyster collection methods on the Rappahannock River by viewing local fisherman use patent tonging and dredging methods near oyster reefs. Participants were also able to experience the hatchery process exhibited at the Rappahannock Oyster Company.


Concluding the tour, participants were treated to some locally sourced goodies: Northern Neck Ginger Ale, produced out of the town of Montross and the proposed official soft drink of Virginia, and Northern Neck Popcorn Bag, gourmet popcorn that comes in a variety of assorted flavors from cinnamon roll to rainbow! The Northern Neck Planning District Commission and their Tourism Corporation helped considerably to make this event possible.

The Wandering Virginia’s Waterways Bus Tour was the pilot to future LGAC bus tours for local elected officials across the watershed. Members hope to organize the next bus tour of 2020 in Maryland.

For access to more photos from this event, please refer to the Alliance’s Facebook page here.

Alliance’s Local Government Team from left to right: Ola-Imani Davis, Jennifer Starr, Laura Cattell Noll