Tag Archives: Blacksburg Regional Arts Association

Blacksburg Regional Arts Association- DBI- Non-profit Member of the Month


Downtown Blacksburg, Inc is proud to present our Non-profit Member of the Month for September 2015 Blacksburg Regional Arts Association

Mission: Our aims are to make quality art events affordable,attractive and accessible to our members and the public; and to encourage and support one another while fostering creativity and joyfully exploring the arts.

The Blacksburg Regional Art Association is a group of artists in Blacksburg, Va., and the surrounding area.  The association is dedicated to the pursuit and enjoyment of art both personally and in the community. Established in 1950, the association has continued through the all-volunteer efforts of creative people of all ages and styles of art, the enthusiastic support of the community and the ever-present urge to see, create and enjoy beauty in the world around us.


Mina Hejazi,Lois Stephens, Gerri Young, Teri Hoover

BRAA member, and current President of the organization Gerri Young shares what makes this organization so important to her.

“I moved to Blacksburg in early 2010, knowing only a handful of people.  I joined BRAA two weeks after I arrived.  It is quite clear to me that art was my passport to the town and to many new and wonderful friends.  In the last two years, BRAA has made great strides in re-making itself with totally new branding designed to give the organization a new look and feel with a new logo, new webpage, the first Facebook page, new luncheon venue and many new and different events.  All that has paid off with an increased membership from about 80 to around 120 and a greatly improved reputation in the Blacksburg art scene. We have many excellent artists working in a variety of media and it is heartwarming to know that a number of those new artists came to us with the same story of being new in town.  Many of them found out about BRAA through information in the Community Art Information Office, (149 College Avenue) followed the trail to our monthly luncheon and our webpage and are now active members enjoying our assortment of events and networking among themselves.  The enthusiasm and energy that is clearly part of our organization, founded in 1950, is something of which we all are proud.  It took a serious team effort  to create the organization we are today.”

The BRAA keep busy and use Facebook as one of their ways of communicating with each other and the public.

Members frequently hold workshops such as the upcoming Eco- Printing and Mark Making workshop. Oct. 16-18, 2015 at
Hahn Horticultural Garden Pavilion led by BRAA member Becca Imbur.  Eco-Print Workshop Flier

The BRAA also shares information about upcoming art exhibitions and juried shows such as the upcoming  New River Art 2015 13th Juried Biennial Exhibition Fine Arts Center for the New River Valley Pulaski, Va. Oct. 9 -­‐ Nov. 20. Call for Entry New River Art 2015 – july28 edition

The artwork of approved BRAA exhibiting members can always be found in Blacksburg. Various businesses in the area support us through an agreement which welcomes 2D and/or 3D artworks to be exhibited in their establishments on a quarterly or longer schedule.

Those community galleries are:
Community Arts Information Office
Brown Insurance
Main Street Inn
Mill Mountain Coffee and Tea
Real Life Dental Care
See Mark Optical
VTLS, Inc.
Zeppoli’s Restaurant
VT Women’s Center
Pointe West Management
Blue Ridge Cancer Care


This slideshow requires JavaScript.

Pita Vera-Made from Scratch with a Lebanese Flair

2 Nov pitat11

Post written by Cyndy Graham

Yes, you heard correctly. The food at Pita Vera is made fresh and baked fresh. From gyros to kabobs, Pita Vera prepares your food to order with the finest and freshest products. Owner Sam Makoley knew he wanted to open his restaurant in Blacksburg after working in the hotel and restaurant industry in LA and Phoenix. It didn’t take many trips to Southwest Virginia before he was won over by the beauty of the area, sense of community, peace and quiet, and most of all, the people. When he would visit his cousin in Roanoke, he enjoyed the slower pace of life compared with big city life. After the economy took a downturn in 2008, he decided to sell his restaurant in Phoenix, and head to Blacksburg.

Pita Vera is in the former “More than Coffee” location at 235 North Main St. Also, the former site of Mr. Fooz Sub Shop (1981), a favorite location of Hokie alums, including myself, the name was changed in June 2010 to more accurately reflect the food and the atmosphere. Sam bought the restaurant in May 2009. The food is a combination of Mediterranean, Lebanese, Greek, and Italian, using recipes passed down through Sam’s family and new dishes that the owner puts together on his own. Menu items are continually updated, and include fresh fish and homemade pasta. A $100,000 building renovation is in the works, which will include new seating. The focus of the menu is on fresh, healthy options using ingredients such as olive oil, and menu items are cholesterol free. Sam always “treats the customer the way I would want to be treated.”

The downtown location has many plusses, and a few minuses. Having such a visible location is a great advantage, but there is a lot of competition. New restaurants are opening all of the time and there are more dining options on campus. The location also does not allow for outdoor seating, at a time when College Avenue is being upgraded for more outdoor seating options. Pita Vera does have a lot of loyal, local customers, as well as customers from Roanoke, Winchester, and even Boston, who make sure to stop by when they are in town.

Sam Makoley brought his passion for ethnic foods to Blacksburg along with his philosophy of being true to the customer (vera is Latin for “true”).  Sam and his staff at Pita Vera simply “try to do our best.” Evidently his customers agree. I urge you to check it out!
Take in a little art with your meal- Pita Vera carries a rotating display of art by members of Blacksburg Regional Arts Association.

Pita Vera
235 N. Main St.
Blacksburg, VA   24060
Tel: 540-552-9222

Hours of operation:
Monday through Thursday 11:00 to 9:00pm
Friday and Saturday 11:00 to 9:30pm.

This slideshow requires JavaScript.

The Gift of Art

21 Dec jewels

“Our aims are to make quality art events affordable, attractive and accessible to our members and to the public; and to encourage and support one another while fostering creativity and joyfully exploring the arts.”

Promoting the arts in the New River Valley since 1950, the Blacksburg Regional Arts Association is a Virginia Museum of Fine Arts Partner, a member of the Blue Ridge Arts Council, and a non-profit volunteer organization. Showing now in the Community Arts Information Office (149 College Ave), is a holiday display of art and craft by members of the Blacksburg Regional Art Association.

The Gift of Art
The work of the following artists is featured in this special exhibit- Dale Norton, Toni Bowman, Marie Collier, Paula Golden, Susan Hensley, Nancy Norton, David Pearce, Mary Ratliff, Cecilia Riegert, Robi Sallee, Lois Stephens, Donald Sunshine, Joanne Sunshine, and Gerri Young.
Items available include art in a variety of media- from carved wooden bowls, sparkling beaded jewelry, and woven rugs to photography, stained glass, and watercolors; guaranteeing that there really is something for everyone. And that includes something for everyone’s budget. You can buy your friend a beautiful handcrafted stained glass Christmas tree for as little as $12. Original holiday cards, customized jewels, and recycled glass pendants add to the mix. Give the gift of art, created by local artists; the gift that keeps on giving all year long.

This slideshow requires JavaScript.

The exhibit runs from December 1-30, 2010 and all items on display are available for purchase so drop in and find a gift for someone special!

Community Arts Information Office, 149 College Ave, Blacksburg
Hours of Operation: 9:00 am to 7:00 pm, Mon. – Fri
10:00 am to 7:00 pm, Sat. *
1:00 pm to 6:00 pm, Sun. *
* As Staff is Available

For the first time in sixty years of service, the BRAA has a public presence! “It’s a place to gather, welcome visitors, show our art, store our stuff, and toot our horn. Our office is located at: 149 College Avenue, Blacksburg, VA 24060, in the Central Arts Information Office (CAIO,) near the Lyric Theatre and across the street from Theatre 101, and Henderson Lawn. It’s the heart of the developing Downtown Blacksburg Arts District.” says President and local artist, Nancy Norton.

Want to know more about how you can support the BRAA? Check out the website: BRAA or call: 540-552-0552.


Get every new post delivered to your Inbox.

Join 29,294 other followers