Arts & Culture

Arts and culture

Galax Vies to Break World Record...Again

Jul 28, 2015

The 80th Galax Old Fiddlers’ Convention begins next Monday, August 3. On day two, Tuesday, of this year’s week long convention, hundreds of musicians will attempt to assemble the world’s largest mandolin ensemble.

Sound: “One, two, three, play.” (followed by hundreds of mandolins playing “Old Joe Clark.”)

That is the sound of 389 mandolins playing “Old Joe Clark” in the grandstands at Felts Park, home of The Galax Old Fiddlers’ convention.

Sound: cheering

Rest in Pieces

Jul 23, 2015

Shopping has moved to a whole new level this summer, with the opening of a gift shop in Richmond – a place that specializes in bones and soft tissue preserved in jars.  

If you’re looking for an unusual gift – something that really is one of a kind – Justin Torone invites you to visit Rest in Pieces, a store that specializes in things that are dead.

“There’s butterflies, and there’s like eyeballs in jars.  Everybody can find something here that they like.”

Chincoteague Pony Swim Celebrates 90 Years

Jul 22, 2015

This month marks the 90th year the Chincoteague Volunteer Fire Company's Saltwater Cowboys run their annual pony swim. The wild ponies, whose Spanish lineage dates back centuries, are moved from Assateague and Chincoteague Islands, to the fire company's carnival grounds where a selection of foals are auctioned off. But unless there's a fire, rounding up cowboys is sometimes more difficult than ponies.

At a booth to the entrance to Chincoteague National Wildlife Refuge, park ranger Naomi Belton collects park fees and gives directions to the best places to see them.

Karl and Hari Berzins, along with their two children, live in a tiny home in Floyd County. Their whole home is smaller in square footage than the average living room. Much of the material is reclaimed: the roof, siding, and interior wood. In part two of our tiny home visit, we learn no space goes unused.


In 1974 the average new home in the U.S. was just shy of 1,700 square feet. By 2014 the average new home size was over 2,600 square feet.  Even with that trend there is an opposing one where homes are shrinking to sizes smaller than the average living room.

Today, we meet Karl and Hari Berzins who, along with their two children, live in a Floyd County home that's only 8 feet by 21 feet in total size.