Recent News – Bedford County Economic Development https://www.bedfordeconomicdevelopment.com Office of Economic Development Fri, 08 Nov 2019 20:35:43 +0000 en-US hourly 1 https://wordpress.org/?v=5.2.4 Local students win big at state competition /local-students-win-big-at-state-competition/ Fri, 08 Nov 2019 19:50:24 +0000 /?p=5996 Congratulations to local FFA students. Five students from Bedford County Public Schools won at the state level for Veterinary Science and/or Tractor Troubleshooting at the Virginia FFA State Competition. Each winner was recognized by the Bedford County Ag Board at its November meeting. Pictured here with Jeff Powers, Chairman of the Bedford County Ag Board, […]

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Five students from Bedford County Public Schools won at the state level for Veterinary Science and/or Tractor Troubleshooting at the Virginia FFA State Competition. Each winner was recognized by the Bedford County Ag Board at its November meeting. Pictured here with Jeff Powers, Chairman of the Bedford County Ag Board, and their teacher, Lindsay Tomlinson:

Parry Dooley won for Veterinary Science.
Joshua Leamy won for both Veterinary Science and Tractor Troubleshooting.
Makenna Garrett won for Veterinary Science.

Not pictured:
Thomas Burnette won for Tractor Troubleshooting
Olivia Croft won for Veterinary Science

Congratulations on all your hard work and thank you for your commitment to agriculture in Bedford County.

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Bedford/Franklin Area Visitor and Resident Survey /bedford-franklin-area-visitor-and-resident-survey/ Tue, 29 Oct 2019 12:41:39 +0000 /?p=5972 The Virginia Department of Rail and Public Transportation (DRPT), in conjunction with the Town of Bedford and Bedford and Franklin Counties, Virginia, is conducting an important survey that will help plan transportation in the Bedford/Franklin area including the potential for Virginia Amtrak service to add a station stop in the Town of Bedford.  The purpose […]

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The Virginia Department of Rail and Public Transportation (DRPT), in conjunction with the Town of Bedford and Bedford and Franklin Counties, Virginia, is conducting an important survey that will help plan transportation in the Bedford/Franklin area including the potential for Virginia Amtrak service to add a station stop in the Town of Bedford.  The purpose of this study is to capture how far people would be willing to travel to the proposed Bedford station, as well as current travel patterns in the Route 29 rail corridor.  This survey will be active until January 6, 2020, and should take approximately 10 minutes of your time. It is completely voluntary and any answers you give will be kept private. This survey makes no promise of future train service.

NOTE – In the context of this study, “Bedford/Franklin Area” includes the Town of Bedford, as well as the surrounding region, e.g. Bedford, Botetourt, and Franklin Counties.

Take the survey here: https://www.surveymonkey.com/r/J2G8T5P

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Coyote Lottery Opens on October 1 – Grand Prize $2,000 /coyote-lottery-opens-on-october-1-grand-prize-2000/ Tue, 01 Oct 2019 18:44:46 +0000 /?p=5902 Today is opening day of the Bedford County Coyote Lottery. From October 1, 2019 – February 29, 2020 you can help manage the over-population of coyotes by participating in the lottery. How to enter: Kill the coyote (follow state hunting guidelines). More than one kill allowed. Each kill qualifies and no limit to the number […]

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Today is opening day of the Bedford County Coyote Lottery. From October 1, 2019 – February 29, 2020 you can help manage the over-population of coyotes by participating in the lottery.

How to enter:

  1. Kill the coyote (follow state hunting guidelines). More than one kill allowed. Each kill qualifies and no limit to the number of entries. Only coyotes killed in Bedford County qualify.
  2. Bring the carcass or intact head to Southern States Cooperative in Bedford to be verified and entered into the lottery. Entry forms are available and must be filled out on site. Please note that you are responsible to properly dispose of the coyote following identification.
  3. The winners will be notified in March 2020.

Rules available at Southern States in Bedford.

Download the flier here.

 

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Educational Tours Day at Bedford County Fair /educational-tours-day-at-bedford-county-fair/ Fri, 27 Sep 2019 19:45:03 +0000 /?p=5896 All fourth graders in Bedford County Public Schools visited the Bedford County Fair today as part of their curriculum to learn about agriculture and environmental sciences. The students learned about soil and water conservation; fish farming; cattle, horses, and sheep; the chicken gestation process; and how to identify animal track marks, among other important agri-science […]

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All fourth graders in Bedford County Public Schools visited the Bedford County Fair today as part of their curriculum to learn about agriculture and environmental sciences.

The students learned about soil and water conservation; fish farming; cattle, horses, and sheep; the chicken gestation process; and how to identify animal track marks, among other important agri-science studies.

Thanks to the volunteers, and staff who were on hand to provide the numerous demonstrations about agriculture in Bedford County.

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SML Packaging to expand in Bedford County, add four new jobs /sml-packaging-to-expand-in-bedford-county-add-four-new-jobs/ Wed, 25 Sep 2019 12:36:08 +0000 /?p=5891 The bottle machine manufacturer will lease a 22,000 square foot space on Venture Drive in Forest and plans to invest $650,000 and add four new jobs over the next three years.

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SML Packaging to expand in Bedford County, add four new jobs

Bedford, Virginia—The Bedford County Office of Economic Development, in partnership with the Economic Development Authority (EDA), is pleased to welcome SML Packaging, LLC to Bedford County. The bottle machine manufacturer will lease a 22,000 square foot space on Venture Drive in Forest and plans to invest $650,000 and add four new jobs over the next three years.

SML Packaging was established in the Lynchburg region in 2005 to meet the custom packaging machinery needs for the glass and bottling industry, such as craft beer and wine producers. The company employs seven full time employees and will add four more at its new location in Forest.

“We are happy to grow our business in Bedford County to support the increase in customer requests for specialty machines that deliver new features”, said Mark Wojdyla, managing member of the company. “This new location will give us the ability to increase production with the added square footage and provide more space for employees.

“Our area has become a national hub in the custom machine and conveyor systems industry and this company’s legacy and growth fits nicely with that story,” said Matthew Braud, District 4 representative on the Bedford County EDA. “We are thrilled to welcome SML Packaging to Bedford County.”

The Bedford County EDA will track the new equipment and jobs added over the next three years and incentivize the company’s growth with a cash grant tied to performance.

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About SML:

SML Packaging, was established in 2005 and has quickly gained a reputation the glass and plastic bottling industry for producing outstanding custom built packing machinery, particularly for the craft beer and wine industry. The company strives to produce the longest lasting, heaviest duty products on the market. With over 150 years of combined experience in the packaging industry they are able to design and fabricate grids and case packers to fit any need.

 

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5th Annual Bedford County Fair to be held September 26-29, 2019 /5th-annual-bedford-county-fair-to-be-held-september-26-29-2019/ Thu, 19 Sep 2019 18:09:39 +0000 /?p=5876 This year’s fair is bigger and better than ever as Bedford celebrates “Where Farm Meets Fun”

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This year’s fair is bigger and better than ever as Bedford celebrates “Where Farm Meets Fun”

Bedford, Virginia – The Bedford County Fair Board is hosting the fifth Bedford County Fair at the Glenwood Center in Huddleston. Once again the fair offers free admission and free parking. This is made possible by the generous support of sponsors and volunteers throughout the community.

The Bedford County Fair, has seen an increase in attendance in each of the last four years with more than 22,000 attendees last year alone and including visitors from as far away as Brooklyn, NY. Additionally, the Board estimates the onsite sales from vendors last year reached just over $250,000 and a total economic impact to Bedford County of over $700,000.

The 2019 Bedford County Fair will feature a variety of events to attract all ages and interests. Embracing the theme of “Where Farm Meets Fun” the fair will feature a midway by Brinkley Amusements, free daily shows by Super 3 Ring Circus, and an interactive experience in Old McDonald’s farm.

Each day will include a different event for attendees to enjoy. On Thursday, the fair will kick off with a demolition derby. Friday, the fair will host fourth graders from around the county for an educational day with various activities and events. Then Friday evening Tate Tuck will play a free concert. On Saturday, the day will start with a youth livestock show, and the evening will feature a fireworks show and Eric Gress playing a free concert. Sunday will start with a community worship service, horse show, a free concert by Goff Mountain, car show and antique farm equipment and tractor show.

The fair also provides the opportunity for adult and youth community members to compete in a variety of contests such as the nostalgic baking, canning and best vegetables, and artistry competitions including photography, art, quilt squares and crafting divisions. The demolition derby, car show, horse show and antique tractor show are also still accepting entries.

The fair prides itself on being a fun, affordable and safe event for the whole family. Full details can be found at BedfordCoFair.Org or on the Bedford County Fair Facebook page Facebook.com/BedfordCoFair.

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Valtim Expands Operations in Bedford County – invests $750,000 and adds 8 new jobs /valtim-expands-operations-in-bedford-county-invests-750000-and-adds-8-new-jobs/ Wed, 18 Sep 2019 13:57:41 +0000 /?p=5872 Valtim Marketing Solutions, Inc. will expand its operation in Forest and invest $750,000, adding eight new jobs over the next three years.

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Valtim Expands Operations in Bedford County – More than $750,000 in printing equipment and 8 new jobs to be added

Bedford, Virginia—The Bedford County Office of Economic Development, in partnership with the Economic Development Authority, is pleased to announce that Valtim Marketing Solutions, Inc. will expand its operation in Forest and invest $750,000, adding eight new jobs over the next three years.

“Due to client demand and an industry shortage in envelope production, we are vertically integrating, bringing more industry solutions under one roof to better serve our customers”, said Tim Hamilton, President and CEO of Valtim. “We can now do larger production runs – from the thousands to the millions – with quicker turnaround.”

The company, located on Venture Drive in Forest, employs 96 full time people and plans to hire eight more employees over the next three years as it grows its envelope production capacity.

“Steady and strong employers who provide a safe and clean environment like Valtim are who we like to have in Bedford County”, said Mickey Johnson, Chairman of the Bedford County Economic Development Authority. “Congratulations to Valtim on its continued success.”

Valtim started out as a small family business in 1986 and has expanded to providing solutions on a national scale, employing nearly 100 full-time employees as well as an average annual 25-35 seasonal or part-time associates. The company offers mailing, printing, fulfillment, and call center solutions for clients across the country. Valtim has also been recognized by Printing Impressions trade publication as one of the top 300 printers in the nation – and among the top 5% of the nation’s largest digital printers – for three years running.

 

About Valtim:
Valtim Marketing Solutions is a multi-channel marketing and fulfillment services provider supporting some of the largest organizations in America. It has grown from a local family-owned business to a versatile company with a national footprint. Valtim remains committed to building strong relationships by delivering customized, scalable solutions with a personal touch. To meet its clients’ growing need for integrated services, Valtim built a portfolio of affordable solutions to meet marketing, fulfillment and business support needs–all under one roof.

 

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Bedford County Celebrates 10th Anniversary of its Bedford ONE Program /bedford-county-celebrates-10th-anniversary-of-its-bedford-one-program/ Mon, 09 Sep 2019 18:49:21 +0000 /?p=5840 Bedford County celebrates 10 years of connecting local businesses with a young workforce through its Bedford ONE (Offering New Experiences) program. The Bedford ONE program was implemented in 2009 after an Office of Economic Development Roundtable meeting where local business leaders addressed the growing need for a qualified workforce. Since then, more than 4,000 high […]

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Bedford County celebrates 10 years of connecting local businesses with a young workforce through its Bedford ONE (Offering New Experiences) program. The Bedford ONE program was implemented in 2009 after an Office of Economic Development Roundtable meeting where local business leaders addressed the growing need for a qualified workforce. Since then, more than 4,000 high school students have toured area companies through a partnership between the Bedford County Office of Economic Development, Bedford County Public Schools, and area businesses. Through these industry tours, students are able to hear from companies about job opportunities as well as education and training needs for various careers.

“We welcome the students who tour our facility because it gives us a chance to talk directly to our future potential workforce,” said Steve Morris, Director of Finance & Operations at Valtim in Forest. “We show them the different types of machinery we use and talk about the skills we are looking for in employees.”

“Participating in the Bedford One program allows Blue Ridge Optics to introduce local students to an important and rapidly growing industry”, says Justin Siehen, General Manager of Blue Ridge Optics. “Students experience first-hand how optics are manufactured for some of the most exotic and exciting applications in the world, ranging from Defense, Aerospace, Research and Medicine, to items they recognize and use every day. By doing so, we hope to wake their interest in our field and steer them towards related educational and career opportunities. We also hope that some of the participants may one day take advantage of our internship program or perhaps even permanently join our team.”

An advisory committee is headed up by the Bedford County Office of Economic Development staff and comprised of officials from local companies, Bedford County Public Schools, the Bedford Area Chamber of Commerce, and Central Virginia Community College, including career coaches from Jefferson Forest High School, Liberty High School and Staunton River High School, and volunteers from local companies.

“It is our goal to increase awareness for students who may not know of the diversity of career opportunities that we have in our region”, said Pam Bailey who coordinates the tours. “Our surveys indicate that students who participate in these tours are more likely to stay or return to work in Bedford County following post-high school education.”

Tours this year so far are scheduled at Bedford Regional Water Authority, Bedford Solar Farm, The Landing restaurant, Liberty University School of Aeronautics, L3Harris, Liberty University Center for Engineering Research and Education. Other tours are being planned at other local companies such as Sentry Equipment, Custom Truck, Framatome, Centra, and US Pipe, to name a few.

If you know a company that would like to host a tour for 20 – 40 high school students, please contact Pam Bailey in the Bedford County Office of Economic Development at pbailey@bedfordcountyva.gov or call 540-587-5670.

 

 

 

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September marks the National Workforce Development Month /september-marks-the-national-workforce-development-month/ Fri, 06 Sep 2019 18:25:43 +0000 /?p=5853 September is National Workforce Development Month which highlights the important role that Career and Technical Education (CTE) plays in the workforce development Eco system.

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September is National Workforce Development Month which highlights the important role that Career and Technical Education (CTE) plays in the workforce development ecosystem.

Bedford County Office of Economic Development works diligently to partner with local businesses, Bedford County Public Schools, and Central Virginia Community College to connect our workforce with training programs and career exploration opportunities. Our Bedford ONE program is in its 10th year this year and since its inception, more than 4,000 high school students have toured area companies through these partnerships.

Programs such as CVCC’s XLR8 STEM Academy, and The Future Focus Foundation are important to our region’s future workforce. The STEM Academy’s curriculum is geared toward cultivating student interested in engineering, mechatronics, and biomedical sciences through project-based learning to prepare them for real-world challenges.

Bedford County Public Schools offers a Career Internship Program for high school seniors. Students receive workplace readiness instruction through an instructor and participate in a three-hour per week internship at a local business. For more information about the Internship program, contact Bedford County Public Schools or visit the website.

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According to the CTE Policy Watch website, a bi-partisan resolution introduced by United States Senators Dianne Feinstein (D-CA), Mike Enzi (R-WY), and CTE Caucus Co-Chairs Tammy Baldwin (D-WI) and Todd Young (R-IN), recognizes the growing skills gap and supports the promotion of federal workforce development investments to ensure our economic competitiveness in the 21st century economy. Read the full resolution here.

 

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Legacy Cider to invest $300,000 to establish new hard cider production facility /legacy-cider-to-invest-300000-to-establish-new-hard-cider-production-facility/ Mon, 12 Aug 2019 16:52:35 +0000 /?p=5828 Legacy Cider will invest $300,000 to establish a new hard cider production facility in Bedford County.

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Governor Ralph Northam on Friday, August 9, 2019 announced that Legacy Cider will invest $300,000 to establish a new hard cider production facility in Bedford County. Located on-site with the owners’ craft brewery Apocalypse Ale Works, the addition will also include improvements to the existing taproom and biergarten. Over the next three years, Legacy Cider will create five new jobs and purchase $146,000, or 12,150 bushels, of Virginia-grown apples, 100 percent of anticipated agricultural purchases.

“Legacy Cider’s new operation in Bedford County will further strengthen Virginia’s position as a top pick for artisanal ciders,” said Governor Northam. “This investment from Legacy Cider and their commitment to using 100 percent Virginia apples supports the Commonwealth’s farmers, who are at the core of our thriving craft beverage industry, and highlights the growing connection between agriculture and tourism in Virginia.”

In 2013, the John family opened Apocalypse Ale Works in Forest, and it became the first craft beverage attraction in Bedford County. Building on their success, the owners recently planted apple trees and acquired a Virginia Farm Winery license to establish Legacy Cider, which will produce a variety of traditional and innovative ciders made with 100 percent Virginia apples.

“This exciting announcement highlights continued success in Virginia’s craft beverage industry and the growing connection between agriculture and tourism,” said Secretary of Agriculture and Forestry Bettina Ring. “I am pleased that the Commonwealth could partner with Legacy Cider and the locality through the AFID program to support the first award in Bedford County.”

“We are incredibly excited to announce our plans to open Bedford County’s first craft cidery,” said the John family, owners of Legacy Cider and Apocalypse Ale Works. “Legacy Cider will be a hard cidery attached to Apocalypse Ale Works’ existing production facility and tasting room. The heart of Virginia has some of the most talented farmers and fertile farmland in the world, so we could not be more excited to take full advantage of this opportunity and produce world-class cider featuring exclusively Virginian apples.”

The Commonwealth is partnering with Bedford County and Legacy Cider on this project through the Governor’s Agriculture and Forestry Industries Development (AFID) Fund, which is administered by the Virginia Department of Agriculture and Consumer Services (VDACS). Governor Northam approved a $12,000 grant from the AFID Fund to secure the project for Virginia, which Bedford County will match with local funds.

“We have such a rich history of orchard production in Bedford County and it’s exciting that Legacy Cider is building on that tradition by sourcing produce from local and regional orchards,” said Chairman of the Bedford County Economic Development Authority Mickey Johnson. “This project makes a significant economic and tourism impact and also promotes a promising local agribusiness network.”

“By choosing to expand its existing facility after six successful years in Forest, Apocalypse Ale Works reaffirms that Bedford County is a great place to open, build, and grow a prosperous business,” said Delegate Kathy J. Byron. “Legacy Cider is an expansion that not only will create jobs, but also will use Virginia apples in producing a quality product. Clearly, the John family is committed to Virginia.”

“Congratulations to Legacy Cider on the exciting plans to open Bedford County’s first craft cidery,” said Senator Steve Newman. “We are delighted that over the next three years, five new jobs will be created and $146,000, of Virginia-grown apples, will be purchased. We wish them much continued success and we congratulate Bedford County, Legacy Cider, and our local government team who have worked hard to make Virginia thrive.”

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