Spotted Lanternfly spotted, Meals on the Bus, Discovery Hike and other news from Shenandoah

Spotted Lantern Butterfly

~ PVN staff report

SHENANDOAH, July 12 — Members of the Shenandoah Council heard a report on Tuesday night that Spotted Lanternfly nymphs have been spotted in the southern end of Town.

The Town is considering signing an agreement with the U.S. Department of Agriculture and the Virginia Department of Agricultural and Consumer Services to help address the spread of the pests. However, signing a Survey and Treatment Release Agreement does not guarantee treatment. Limited resources have forced the agencies to prioritize treatments.

The Town can not be considered for treatments or surveys if the agreement is not signed. There are no fees for treatments.

The Virginia Farm Bureau Federation reported last month that the species of invasive pests were damaging vineyards in a few northern Virginia counties and were headed south. State officials are taking action to prevent further spread.

“Together, pesticide treatments and the Spotted Lanternfly Quarantine have slowed the spread of this invasive pest,” said David Gianino, program manager for the Virginia Department of Agriculture and Consumer Services Office of Plant Industry Services. “However, surveys conducted by VDACS indicate that spotted lanternfly populations have now become established in other cities and counties.”

With no natural enemies in the U.S., spotted lanternfliesLycorma delicatula, can cause extensive damage to vines, crops and trees. Virginia’s Spotted Lanternfly Quarantine currently includes the City of Winchester and the counties of Clarke, Warren and Frederick.

In early July, the quarantine zone was expanded to the cities of Buena Vista, Charlottesville, Harrisonburg, Lexington, Lynchburg, Manassas, Staunton and Waynesboro, and Albemarle, Augusta, Carroll, Page, Prince William, Rockbridge, Rockingham, Shenandoah and Wythe counties.

“Beyond direct damage to crops, the lanternfly also poses a risk to any business reliant on import and export of goods between states, as other states consider quarantines to prevent the spread of the invasive species,” said Ben Rowe, Virginia Farm Bureau Federation district field services director.

The spotted lanternfly has been traced back to a cargo load of landscaping stone shipped to Pennsylvania from China in 2014. The insects have been prolific in Frederick County since 2018, said Virginia Cooperative Extension agent Mark Sutphin. 

Spotted lanternflies amass in high numbers and drink vast amounts of sap, draining a host plant of resources, Sutphin explained. They excrete a sugary substance called honeydew that encourages the growth of black sooty mold and blocks photosynthesis in understory leaves, further reducing plant capacity and feed on more than 100 plant species.

Visit bit.ly/3zES5ke for information on the Spotted Lanternfly Quarantine, including permitting instructions and a list of regulated items. 

In other business at its July 12 meeting, the Shenandoah Council took the following actions:

• Mayor and Council were scheduled to present the July 2022 Community Enhancement Award to Timothy Williams, 714 Denver Ave. However, Williams was unable to attend, and arrangements will be made for him to receive his plaque.

• Received a notice from the Virginia Alcohol Beverage Control Authority for the application of an alcohol license for Rudys Enterpise LLC (dba – Rudys Diner) at 418 N Fifth St.

• Received a flyer from Page County Public Schools for the Summer 2022 Meals on the Bus Schedule. The program will serve breakfast and lunch to any child 18 and under on a first-come, first-served basis. No registration is required. The bus will be in Shenandoah at various locations on Tuesdays and Thursdays. For more information, contact the PCPS Department of Nutritional Services at (540) 743-6533.

• Received a flyer about the Discovery Hike taking place in Big Gem Park on the Clinton Lucas Jr. Trail from 10 a.m. to noon on Saturday, July 23. All ages are welcome to join in the hike led by Mara Meisel, a retired Shenandoah National Park Ranger and Naturalist with 30 years of experience. Meisel will be pointing out the native and non-native plants and wildlife along the trail. The Clinton Lucas Jr. Trail is a 1-mile loop trail and is rocky and uneven with an elevation gain of about 100 feet, so please wear sturdy shoes. Don’t forget to bring sunscreen, bug spray and binoculars. No pets please.

• Heard actuarial study has been completed for the cost of the Enhanced Hazardous Duty Retirement Supplement for the Shenandoah Police Department. The initial payment to fund the Retirement Supplement will cost $253,256. The Town is looking into grants and other methods to pay the fee. The Town is the only locality [in the county] without the Enhanced Hazardous Duty Retirement Supplement, and offering the Retirement Supplement helps with retention of officers.

Shenandoah news briefs created from notes provided by Town Clerk.

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IN SHENANDOAH THIS WEEKEND…

Friday, July 15

Classic Car and Truck Cruz-in (weather permitting) on First Street from 6 to 9 p.m. at 426 First St. Sponsored by J&M Auto Parts. 

Spencer Hatcher & The ‘Ol Son Gang performing at the Shenandoah Moose Lodge from 7 to 11 p.m. at 1675 US Hwy 340 South.

Saturday, July 16

Daughter of the Stars Farmer’s Market open from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. at Big Gem Park 736 Fourth St. If you would like to be a vendor, e-mail [email protected]. Vendor applications are also at Town Hall, 426 First St., Shenandoah, VA 22849.

Race Night at Shenandoah Speedway (301 Precision Rd.). VA Sprints, Vintage, LM, SP, U-Cars, Leg, and Bando. Starting at 6 p.m. 

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