Citizen News Weekly

July 23, 2021

Hotel Gets New Owner and New Name; County Receives Multiple Awards; Head Start Enrollment Open; and Free Kid's Activities Coming Up

Big Announcement at the Waterfront:  Yorktown Beach Hotel

The Duke of York Hotel is officially under new ownership:  M.A. Bowery & Company and its investors. Renovations at the now rebranded Yorktown Beach Hotel should wrap up in about six months. As the only waterfront hotel on this side of the Peninsula, the hope is this property will become a popular overnight lodging spot for the entire Greater Williamsburg destination. The 57-room property will remain open as improvements are made and other guest amenities are added.  Special thanks to the Crockett family who owned and operated the Duke of York for many years and helped families create lifelong memories.
Duke of York Hotel

Ella Taylor Road Traffic Calming Project to Begin Soon

Following a speed study and survey by area residents, crews will begin installing speed tables (example shown) on Ella Taylor Road in the coming weeks. For many years, the road has been a cut-through for traffic attempting to avoid Route 17, and often these drivers go well beyond the speed limit causing unsafe conditions for Ella Taylor residents. Once work begins, the road will be closed to thru traffic for the duration of the project.  Electronic signs will notify drivers of the closure.  Updates will be posted on our Facebook page and Public Works website.   
Traffic Table
County Honored to Receive Several Awards!

  • The National Association of Counties (NACo) presented York County with three 2021 Achievement Awards for the following programs:  AED Management; Fire Academy Collaboration with York County, Virginia’s Fitness Ambassador; and Peninsula COVID-19 Operations Center. You can read more about these award-winners here.  
  • Congratulations also to our Dockmaster,  Captain James Scruggs, on being named one of Coastal Virginia’s “Millennials on the Move” by CoVABIZ Magazine. The distinction is reserved for young professionals who demonstrate business excellence, community involvement, and civic contributions to the region. Scruggs, who works in Tourism Development, is a familiar face at the waterfront where he welcomes boaters and tourists to Yorktown. Scruggs is featured in this month’s magazine now available online.
    James Award
  • For the second consecutive year, the Center for Digital Government, which recognizes the best technology practices among U.S. counties, ranked York County 7th in the category of localities with a population up to 150,000.  
  • The Peninsula EMS Council recently announced that the Operation Vaccinate the Peninsula multi-jurisdictional partnership – which includes York County – is the winner of the 2021 PEMS Special Recognition Award.  
  • At Tuesday’s Board of Supervisors meeting, York County was presented with the Greater Williamsburg Chamber Business Council’s Roll of the Drum Award for our pandemic response.  This award was also presented to our Historic Triangle partners – Williamsburg and James City County.

Space Available for Head Start Students Ages 3-4

Head Start offers comprehensive early childhood education, health, nutrition, and parent involvement services to children and families. Enrollment is now open for the 2021-2022 school year for eligible children ages 3 or 4 (by Sept. 30) including those with disabilities. Classrooms are available at the Griffin-Yeates Center, Bethel Manor Elementary, and Yorktown Elementary. Applications are available on the Head Start website.  And, we’re hiring! Visit the Human Resources website to apply. 
Head Start Jobs
Meet Four-Pawed Friends at Tabb Library Saturday

These are the dog days of summer and we mean that literally!  Come to the Tabb Library from 10 to 11:30 a.m. tomorrow for a special event with the Peninsula Regional Animal Shelter.  Visit with staff members and their adoptable furry friends and maybe take a fur-friend home with you! In addition to on-site adoptions, come out to enjoy the Sno-To-Go food truck and raffle prizes, donate pet food and supplies, and more. The Tabb Library is located at 100 Long Green Blvd. just off Hampton Highway (adjacent to the Victory YMCA). 
Books and Barks
Educational Pollinator Craft Kit Available for Kids

York-Poquoson Cooperative Extension is offering free Fairies & Friends craft kits that help teach children about pollinators. Parents and children may pick up a free kit from 10:30 a.m. to 1:30 p.m. next Friday and Saturday (July 30/31) at the Tabb Library (100 Long Green Blvd.) or Poquoson Learning Garden (968 Poquoson Ave.).  Can’t make it to either location? Any remaining kits will be available August 9-13 at the office located in Washington Square Shopping Center.  For more information, call (757) 890-4940. 
VCEAdditional Notes for the Week…..The Office of Economic Development’s Love York Biz contest continues throughout the summer. Submit video of your favorite local business by August 13 for a chance to win a prize for the business and yourself! Check out the rules and visit the Facebook page to vote for your favorite video.    Registration for Fabric & Fibre Camp (August 9-12) is now open and ends August 2.  This camp is for kids in grades 1 through 6 and is held at Tabb Middle School.  Kids will explore an array of textile arts.  More information is available on the Parks and Recreation website. 

Mosquito Dunks
Citizen News Weekly is compiled and published by York County Public Affairs each Friday to share news and events with our citizens and neighbors. This weekly newsletter is placed on our website and delivered directly to your inbox. Questions? Contact Gail Whittaker, Public Information Officer: (757) 890-3310 or

Citizen News Weekly

Citizen News Weekly Banner - July 4 _7

July 2, 2021

Parking for the Fourth; Small Business Grant Applications Start Phase 2; Chemical Collection and Paper Shredding on the 10th

4th of July Battlefield Parking Opens at 4 p.m. for Patriotic Festivities!

The excitement is building in Yorktown as staff and residents get ready to welcome visitors for the annual 4th of July celebration!  Our Department of Public Works crews have worked this week getting the battlefield parking area set up and ready to welcome hundreds of cars for the afternoon and evening events. The parking lot opens at 4 and you don’t want to be late!   This is the only parking area for visitors on Independence Day and once it’s full, the town is closed to traffic. Remember, the walk from the parking lot to the waterfront is approximately one mile on uneven terrain.  Those requiring handicapped parking and special assistance are asked to report to Yorktown Middle School from 4 to 7 p.m. for special needs transportation.   This is available to the person requiring assistance and one escort (i.e. family-member, friend, caregiver).   Complete details are available in An Insider’s Guide to Celebrating Independence Day in Yorktown.   We have had a lot of rain late this week, which may impact parking.  If the battlefield is determined to be too wet for vehicles, evening activities could be affected. As information is made available, it will be posted on our Facebook page.

Battlefield Parking

Curbside Service Begins Tuesday at Grafton Annex

 While the Yorktown Library undergoes expansion, patrons may take advantage of curbside service at the temporary location beginning this Tuesday, July 6.  Monday through Saturday, from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m., visitors may drive up to the Grafton Annex (5751 George Washington Memorial Highway), park in a marked space, and follow posted instructions to call a member of staff who will bring your items to you!  Access to the parking lot is from Grafton Drive, which runs behind the facility.  A portion of the Yorktown branch collection has been temporarily relocated to the Tabb Library, which is open and has a full calendar of events for all patrons.  For more information about programs, visit the Library’s website

Grafton Annex 

Sounds of Summer Concerts, Yorktown Market Days Resume Next Weeksounds of summer logo

After a week off, the Sounds of Summer concert series and Market Days resume.  Come down to Riverwalk Landing Thursday, July 8 for Slapnation performing from 7 to 9:30.   This area favorite brings a variety of tunes that is sure to get you singing along!  Saturday, July 10, Yorktown Market Days is back from 8 a.m. to noon.  Fresh produce and baked goods along with fantastic artwork will be there for you to purchase.  And it’s all along the waterfront where the views are spectacular and the breeze off the river always refreshing.  For the complete event listing, go to the Visit Yorktown website.

Grant Applications Opened This Week: Up to $15,000 Available to York County Small Businesses

Businesses in York County, Williamsburg and Poquoson that had 20 or fewer full-time employees during the COVID-19 pandemic are now eligible to apply for grant funding up to $15,000. The money is designated to reimburse small businesses for rent or mortgage expenses, up to a maximum of six months of payments.   This is the second phase of this grant program, which is funded by a Community Development Block Grant through the Virginia Department of Housing & Community Development.  Previous grant recipients are eligible to apply for additional funds. Eligibility requirements and applications are available on the Economic Development Authority’s website.  While you’re on the website, check out the winner in June’s Love York Biz contest . . . CongratulatioLove York Bizns to Persnickety Crane Café for winning the first round of the Love York Biz contest! There is still a chance for individuals to enter their favorite business in the contest. Love York Biz continues throughout the summer. Check out the rules and visit the Facebook page to vote for your favorite video.

Comprehensive Plan Review Steering Committee Meetings Again In-Person

The committee, also known as York2040, returned to in-person meetings in May and have now gathered together twice in larger facilities that allow social distancing for the safety and comfort of all. The York2040 members provide input to staff working to update this long-range planning York 2040 Logo largerdocument. Meeting notices, presentations, minutes, and a blog are posted on the York2040 website.  These meetings are open to the public.  Check out the website today.

Get Moving with Parks and Recreation

Summer’s a great time to start a new exercise program and we have just the right activity for you.  Summer Adult Fitness Classes begin the week of July 12 and continue for six weeks:  Abs and More (Mondays 5:30 to 6:30 p.m.), Cardio Combo (Wednesdays 6 to 7 p.m.), Strength Training (Saturdays 10 to 11 a.m.), and Yoga (Mondays or Wednesdays both sessions 7 to 8 p.m.).  Classes are held at Grafton Bethel Elementary School. Registration ends one week prior to the start of class.  Pickleball Nights also begin July 12 and continue until August 23. Join in the fun at Back Creek Park for pick-up games on Mondays from 7 to 9 p.m. Cost is only $2 a night. The fee covers paddle, ball, and court rental.  Our Senior Center is back open for classes and programs and there’s room for boot-scootin’ across the dance floor in Line Dancing Classes on Mondays, July 19 through August 9. Beginners take the floor from 1 to 2 p.m., with more experienced dance lessons from 2 to 3.    Parents: Be sure to sign your children up for Field Trip Fever II. This summer program features fun the week of August 2-6 from 7:30 a.m. to 5:30 p.m. Actual field trip times vary depending on the itinerary for each day.  Visit the Parks and Recreation website for more details, to register for these classes, and to see the many other opportunities for fun and fitness.

Time for a News Break!

Citizen News Weekly is taking a short summer vacation and will return on Friday, July 23. Staff are hard at work keeping an eye on things and if breaking news happens, we’ll jump right in and keep you informed!  Our website and Facebook page are not taking a break, so bookmark and follow those County resources for the latest news and info.  

Household Chem Collection 7-10

Citizen News Weekly is compiled and published by York County Public Affairs each Friday to share news and events with our citizens and neighbors. This weekly newsletter is placed on our website and delivered directly to your inbox. Questions? Contact Gail Whittaker, Public Information Officer: (757) 890-3310 or