Kenny Chesney’s Big Revival Tour Delivers Beachy Vibes to DC

Last night, my sister and I saw Kenny Chesney, Jake Owen, and Chase Rice perform at Merriweather Post Pavilion in Columbia, MD. This was a tour stop to support Kenny Chesney’s latest album, “The Big Revival.”

Merriweather is constantly ranked a top concert venue. Did it meet our expectations? You betcha!

We arrived at Merriweather close to the end of Chase Rice’s set, courtesy of DC traffic, so we didn’t hear him perform anything except for “Ride” and “Cruise” as we were walking up to the venue. Rice’s music is interesting to say the least. It certainly fits the “bro-country” mold; hits like “Ready Set Roll” and “Ride” are evidence of that . That’s not to say he isn’t a talented or good musician. He wrote Florida-Georgia Line’s hit single “Cruise” and has several great songs on his debut album “Ignite the Night.” (My personal favorites are “Carolina Can” and “Mmm Girl.”) We were obviously more impressed with Jake Owen and Kenny Chesney.

Florida-grown Jake Owen was next. He recently said he’s ditching “fantasy” songs in response to criticism about him incorporating “bro-country” platitudes into his music. His music certainly has a beachy vibe, which we absolutely appreciate as Southern California natives. Owen performed a host of singles, ranging from “Days of Gold” to “Barefoot Blue Jean Night.” He also performed his new single-“Real Life”-live for the first time, so that was quite exciting. It’s quite catchy. (Apparently, it was inspired by some Sugar Ray songs? Very cool.) Watch the lyric video below:

Below are some pictures I took of Jake Owen. (Swoon!)

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When Kenny Chesney took the stage,  you could feel the excitement build. That man knows how to entertain! (He’s quite the dancer, too.) Kenny Chesney seems like a chill guy–someone you’d want to go fishing with. His music universally appeals to people, regardless of age. His songs speak to the heart. Even better: he sounds authentic during live performances! He started off with “Reality” and also sang “Wild Child,” “Big Star,” “Til It’s Gone,” “American Kids,” “No Shoes No Shirt No Problem,” among other famous hits. Below are some shots I took of Mr. Chesney:

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Hands down, this concert was fantastic. You couldn’t ask for a more perfect Mid-Atlantic summer night either! Apart from the swaths of half-naked teenagers (especially some questionably dressed girls) and some drunkenness, this country concert experience is one I will forever cherish. Glad to see Kenny Chesney is still cranking out good music!

Concert-going season is just getting started! What’s up next in the DMV? Stay tuned…

Anti-Gunners Want to Prevent Gun Shop From Opening in Arlington, VA

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Fellow small business supporters and pro-gun folks of Northern Virginia–where you at? One future gun shop is under attack, and its owner needs our support in wake of salacious attacks targeting his new gun shop.

Nova Firearms – a McLean, VA-based gun shop – is set to open an Arlington, VA shop in August. Its owner- U.S. Marine Corps veteran J.B. Gates, 28- is facing backlash from local curmudgeons of the leftist variety. Some local Arlington residents are trying to prevent the store from opening up in Cherrydale. Here’s more from the Change.org petition:

There are reports that the former Curves storefront at 2105 N. Pollard Street, in a small strip mall along Lee Highway, will be occupied by a gun shop. We, the citizens of Arlington County, oppose a gun shop at this location. We are alarmed that the shop is within 2 blocks of an Arlington County Public School that houses the HB Woodlawn Program and Stratford Program. Further, two elementary schools (Taylor and Arlington Science Focus), are only blocks away. Four additional schools are within 5 miles: Washington-Lee High School, St. Agnes, Key Elementary, and Glebe Elementary.

It is unconscionable, in an era where our children are forced to practice “lock down” drills designed to train them how to protect themselves from armed intruders, to locate a gun shop anywhere in the vicinity of schools. The fear of armed intruders permeates their education, and placing a shop that sells guns and/or ammunition within immediate distance of schools is confusing to students at best, and sparks fears of access to them at school at worst.

We call on the owner of the shop to exercise concern for the community, and most particularly its youngest and most vulnerable residents, and cease any action that would allow a gun shop to occupy the space.

Please also express your concern to your local elected officials –

Arlington County Board Members:  countyboard@arlingtonva.us
Arlington County School Board Members:  school.board@apsva.us

The petition has amassed nearly 2,000 signatures. And property owner Kostas Kapasouris may cave to pressure if we don’t speak out in support of  Mr. Gates, who’s the co-owner of Nova Firearms. From Washington Times:

And he has reason to be worried. Mr. Kapasouris told local news station WJLA-TV last week: “The community is very upset, and I don’t want the community to be upset.” The landlord said to the local television station he was looking for a way to legally break his lease with Mr. Gates.

I tweeted about the ordeal on my Twitter account:

Nova Firearms has every right to open up shop in Arlington. Our beloved Commonwealth of Virginia is a so-called business-friendly state. It’s relatively pro-gun too. And most of all, Arlington residents are allowed to conceal carry. 

First and foremost, opening a gun shop near an elementary school or any school for that matter shouldn’t be cause for alarm. Anti-gunners and other leftist apparatchiks have imposed “gun-free” zone policies nationwide. These zones arguably leave people, particularly students and teachers, vulnerable to attack. These signs invite dangerous folks to commit crimes at these respective places. (More good guys with guns will take out bad guys with guns. Period. I recommend supporting Project ChildSafe.) Second, guns don’t have a mind of their own. Responsible gun owners  practice the four gun safety rules. Guns won’t up and shoot an unsuspecting person; they’re operated by a person. (It’s called personal responsibility and having common sense!) Third, anti-gunners harassing Mr. Gates should redirect their efforts to combating crime in nearby D.C. perpetrated by criminals. Violence is high in The District because criminal activity isn’t reined in and strict gun control policies  dominate the Beltway. Fewer gun owners are able to legally protect themselves due to Draconian laws already in effect. This constant fearmongering isn’t going to fly anymore; we won’t tolerate it.

J.B. Gates appeared on Fox and Friends this morning to counteract attacks on his prospective gun shop.How can we support Mr. Gates and his gun store? Like Nova Firearms on Facebook, follow them on Twitter, and sign this petition in support of the store. Additionally, we – citizens of Northern Virginia, regardless of jurisdiction – should be patrons of Nova Firearms and help this store rake in big bucks to show these bullies they can’t undermine local small businesses.

Welcome to Arlington, Nova Firearms! We look forward to welcoming you with open arms.

UPDATE I:

A counter Change.org petition in support of Nova Firearms has been created. It has amassed close to 2,000 signatures. If you live in Northern Virginia, please sign it here.

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Mount Vernon Spring Wine Festival and Sunset Tour

Gabriella Hoffman:

Check out my review of the Mount Vernon Spring Wine Festival and Sunset Tour up at A Taste of Patriarchy today!

Originally posted on A Taste of Patriarchy:

Anna Maria and I spent Saturday evening at George Washington’s Mount Vernon Estate to attend their annual Spring Wine Festival and Sunset Tour event. This was a three-night event, which ran from Friday, May 15, until Sunday, May 17. Tickets ranged from $35-$45 per person. We got to sample some fine Virginia wine and enjoy sweeping views of the Potomac River. Despite getting caught in torrential downpour, we enjoyed our time sampling some fine Virginia wine! We got to sample from about 16 different wineries: Barboursville Vineyards, Barrel Oak Winery, LLC, CrossKeys Vineyards, Delaplane Cellars, Early Mountain Vineyards, Fincastle Vineyard & Winery, Fox Meadow Winery, General’s Ridge Vineyard, Gray Ghost Vineyards, Horton Vineyards, Jefferson Vineyards, New Kent Winery at Dombroski Vineyards, Potomac Point Winery, Prince Michel Vineyard, Rockbridge Vineyard, Trump Winery, and Veritas Winery

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Eat and Be Social at Mason Social

Gabriella Hoffman:

Check out my review of Mason Social in Old Town Alexandria up at A Taste of Patriarchy!

Originally posted on A Taste of Patriarchy:

I’ve previously written about the farm-to-table movement before and how it encourages customers to eat locally-grown/sourced food, a cause conservatives surely endorse. One great place that is part of this movement is Mason Social in Old Town Alexandria’s Parker-Gray neighborhood.

Mason Social opened its doors in early March. Here’s more about the restaurant:

Chad Sparrow, his brother Justin Sparrow, Teddy Kim and Larry Walston have been friends for over 20 years. In 2015, the lifelong friends launched Mason Social, a contemporary American restaurant in their hometown of Alexandria. Early on, the group saw the potential of the formerly industrial area in historic Old Town known as Parker-Gray. As the warehouses were converted to luxury condos, the demand for a restaurant grew and TLC Group decided to take a risk on the revitalizing neighborhood. Mason Social was then consciously designed to create a space where the diverse and growing neighborhood…

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People of America: Giving a Human Face to Conservative Values

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On Monday, my sister Anna Maria and I unveiled a new project over social media called People of America.

What is People of America, you ask? It’s modeled after Humans of New York in terms of storytelling, but a project boasting a conservative grassroots bent powered by social media. Here’s more on our new project:

People of America seeks to spread conservative ideas through storytelling. Through the power of photos, stories, and social media, we hope to give a human face to conservative principles. This project aims to give people a voice who are ignored by the media, Congress, and the political establishment.

Our side fails to personalize conservatism. It’s almost embarrassing to point out how terrible the elites in party politics avoid this.  People view our side as uncreative, boring, rigid, and uninspiring–sentiments which do nothing for our cause. Why not give a human face to our values? It’s long overdue.

Have you overcome adversity created by big government policies? Have you defied the status quo without government assistant? Are you currently battling bureaucrats or statists? Have a story to share? Let us tell your story!

If you wish to get involved, find People of America on Facebook, Twitter, and Instagram.

Hope you join us at People of America!

New Counter Cultured Article: UCSD Professor Makes Students Strip for Final Exam

I’ve penned a new article at Counter Cultured today about the latest controversy transpiring at my alma mater involving a leftist professor. Here’s more about it:

UC-San Diego professor Ricardo Dominguez is coming under fire for requiring his students to strip for a final exam.

Dominguez, an associate professor of visual arts at our alma mater, is being rightfully criticized for subjecting his students to partaking in erotic behavior. Dominguez has taught a course called Visual Arts 104A: Performing the Self for nearly 11 years. Additionally, he was hired by UCSD in 2005 and awarded tenure in 2009. According to the class syllabus, students are required to perform eight gestures including  “a gesture that traces, outlines or speaks about your ‘erotic self(s).’ ” One student’s mother – who wishes to remain anonymous – helped bring this class to light according to 10News:

Continue reading at Counter Cultured.

Dear L.A.: Leave San Diego Alone!

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San Diego, a.k.a. America’s Finest City, will always have a special place in my heart. I spent three years there during my time at UC-San Diego. Though I moved out of California several years ago, I fondly look back on my time in S.D.

I recently learned that UT-San Diego, formerly the San Diego Union Tribune (SDUT), was bought by the parent company of the L.A. Times. (Ugh.) Here’s more about the recent merger:

The day after the announcement of an agreement to sell the U-T San Diego to the parent company of the Los Angeles Times, the reaction among a variety of civic leaders struck a welcoming tone to the new owner, tempered with a cautious note of wait-and-see about possible changes in a newspaper that traces its lineage back 146 years.

SDUT always had decent commentary, especially with its conservative/libertarian-leaning editorial board. Its reporting is far superior to that of LAT’s “reporting,” in my humble opinion. (LAT is notoriously leftist.) I suspect UTSDo will adopt a more leftist bent following this deal. Truly sad.

This is not the only attempt to subvert San Diego or nearby counties to the whims of L.A. There is immense chatter about transferring Qualcomm Stadium in downtown San Diego up to Carson in L.A. (The Chargers would potentially share their stadium with the Oakland Raiders.) Additionally, the renaming of the Anaheim Angels to the Los Angeles Angels of Anaheim was perhaps the most idiotic move imaginable. (I don’t even follow sports that closely but found this move to be nonsensical since L.A. already boasts the L.A. Dodgers.) Again, L.A. has an encroachment problem.

Here’s more about the rivalry:

“There is a great rivalry going back to the late 19th century in terms of who would be the great Southern California metropolis, San Diego or Los Angeles,” said UC San Diego political science professor Steve Erie. “But then L.A. ended up getting the Southern Pacific railroad in 1873 because they were willing to pay more, and about a quarter of the San Diego business community high-tailed it up to L.A. believing that is where destiny smiles. In a sense, we have been in L.A.’s shadow ever since.”

Now don’t get me wrong–I don’t hate Los Angeles; I just prefer San Diego.

Growing up in Orange County, which is situated between these two metropolises, I had the luxury of traveling to both cities as a child, teenager, and college student. The L.A.-S.D. rivalry was widely apparent, and I always sided with San Diego. I always loved San Diego and knew deep down in my heart that I’d attend college there.

Suffice to say that L.A. is not an entirely horrible place; it’s just so overcrowded, leftist, and superficial. Several relatives live or have lived in L.A., so there were always frequent visits up to Santa Monica or Marina del Rey.  (Thank you Hollywood and decades’ long leftist policies in place for tainting this once-great city!) There are many wonderful things in L.A.–the food, the beach, great art museums, etc.–just not many attractive things available to convince me to move to the City of Angels. (Thankfully I’m out of California entirely.) However, here are just some of my observations as to why S.D. is more superior than L.A.:

  • Fewer, much nicer people – S.D. is home to friendlier people. It must be due to less traffic, proximity to beaches, and better standard of living.
  • Rich military history–Just about every branch of the military is housed in S.D. Navy SEALs are trained here. Plus, there’s the U.S.S. Midway.
  • Fewer taxes, more politically sane – The current mayor is a Republican, though he could benefit from being more conservative. It’s the eighth largest city in the U.S. and is more prosperous than L.A.
  • Nice beaches–Coronado, La Jolla, Encinitas, Carlsbad–need I say more??
  • Great brews, good food–S.D. is known for its variety of food and libations, especially its authentic Mexican food and craft beers.
  • Oldest city in California–S.D. was founded in 1769 and is known as the birthplace of California. Juan Rodriguez Cabrillo stumbled upon it about 200 years before its establishment. Top that, L.A.!

To my fellow California natives still residing in the once Golden State or residing elsewhere: what do you think? Do you think L.A. has an encroachment problem? Weigh in below!