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Find out what's happening in the blog. Below is a list of blog items.

May 08

Star City Shining

Posted to City Manager's Blog by Carol Corbin

What do a pancake breakfast, a classic car show, a parade, Cinco de Mayo, and strawberries have in common?   They all were a part of a collection of events taking place this past weekend in or near Downtown Roanoke.   Just the latest reminder that we are indeed fortunate to live in Roanoke and what a truly great place the Star City is!

Strawberry Festival

Downtown Roanoke was bustling all weekend, beginning last Friday with the annual Community School Strawberry Festival, held at Elmwood Park where hundreds retrieved their strawberry deserts, enjoyed some entertainment and did their part to support this important education institution located right in the heart of downtown.

Pancakes and More

The Roanoke Kiwanis Club held their annual Pancake event at the Berglund Center.  For 25+ years, the Club has conducted an annual event to raise money by selling pancake breakfasts and conducting an auction and yard sale. Each year, thousands of tickets are bought and thousands of pancakes served, hundreds of hours of Club member efforts are volunteered, countless items are sold, and tens of thousands of dollars are raised. The proceeds are used for grants to dozens of local non-profit and charitable organizations focused on children, the elderly, and the environment.  

Classic Cars

The Roanoke Valley Mustang Club held their 34th Annual Mustang and Ford Powered Roundup at Magic City Ford this past Saturday.  Classic cars were on display throughout the day with hundreds of owners and guests in attendance.  

Hispanic Heritage

Cinco de Mayo festivals were held throughout downtown Friday and Saturday culminating in the inaugural TacoRita celebration at Elmwood Park.  The event produced by the Berglund Center, celebrates the Cinco de Mayo weekend, with live Latin music, salsa dancing, taco & chili pepper eating contests, tacos from local Roanoke restaurants, and of course…margaritas!  


Of course, the biggest event of the weekend was the celebration of the Roanoke Rail Yard Dawgs Ice Hockey Team and their victory last Tuesday where they claimed the President’s Cup and the SPHL Championship – the first for the team and the most recent such championship for a Roanoke team in over 35 years!  The team’s accomplishment was celebrated with a community party at Berglund Center preceded by a procession through part of downtown.  The team will be further recognized by the City Council through the reading of a Proclamation at the Council meeting today.  Way to go Dawgs!

What a weekend!  What a City!  

-- Bob Cowell

Jan 25

Roanoke Recap January 25, 2023

Posted to Roanoke Recap by Carol Corbin

Collaboration to Transform Southeast Roanoke Property into Riverdale District Announced

The City of Roanoke, the Roanoke Economic Development Authority, and local developer, Ed Walker, are collaborating and co-investing on a transformation of the former American Viscose Plant in Southeast Roanoke. Over the next several years, the collaboration will preserve elements of its industrial heritage while gradually transforming parts of the former industrial site into Riverdale, a 75+ acre mixed-use district featuring industrial spaces, residences, commercial uses, artist studios, maker spaces and manufacturing. Riverdale will be fully integrated into adjacent natural and recreation areas including the Greenway, Roanoke River, and Mill Mountain.


The agreement that establishes the collaborative investment was approved at the January 17 City Council meeting and includes a $10 million forgivable performance loan facilitating property acquisition, addressing immediate environmental and master-planning needs, and removal of debris currently on the site. This agreement requires and catalyzes at least $50 million of private investment and development. An economic study prepared by Chmura Economics indicates that the first phase alone could generate more than $300 million in economic impact, supporting 2,000 jobs in the process.

Vote for the Roanoke River for Best Urban Kayaking Spot 2023

The Roanoke River is one of the nominees for Best Urban Kayaking Spot for 2023 for the USA TODAY 10Best contest! Voting is open, and you can vote daily through February 6.

We are in the chase for the top spot, but we need your help. Make sure you click the link and vote for the Roanoke River today.

Let's help the Roanoke River win this award for the 2nd consecutive year!


river kayak

Swift Water Rescue Training

Check out what some of our swift water team has been up to lately! These B-shifters spent their off-duty day on the James River at Balcony Falls honing their skills in paddle craft operations. ??

swift water rescue

Thanks Capt. Robert Reid, Lt. Nick Sosik, Lt. Jonathan Metro, FF Daniel Driver, FF Kalin Conn, and FF Thomas Schacter for getting out there and getting it done, despite the frigid temps! ??

City of Roanoke Awarded Funds for the Virginia Business Ready Sites Program

Exciting news from Governor Glenn Youngkin's office! ??

It was announced on January 16, that the City of Roanoke was awarded funds for the Virginia Business Ready Sites Program. These funds will further develop Tract 8 located in the Roanoke Centre for Industry and Technology (RCIT).

Learn more about this announcement and Virginia Business Ready Sites Program at