Because a drayage load can mean a few different things, confusion among carriers is common. Many carriers link drayage with going into a port, but that isn't always true. While all drayage loads typically originate from a port of entry, there are often several legs of a drayage journey before a container turns up at its final stop. Legs of a drayage load may include:
You may be thinking, what's so important about drayage? It's such a small step in the container storage transport process. In reality, it's an integral piece needed in the logistics industry and a crucial part of U.S. supply chain management.
To truly understand the importance of drayage, let's use flowers as an example. Most cut flower shipments enter the market from areas in South America until they end up at Dutch auction houses. Once there, wholesalers purchase flowers in bulk and send those products to retail outlets worldwide. Because flowers are perishable, they typically need to be refrigerated and are often shipped in reefer containers. These refrigerated vessels must maintain a certain temp to prevent loss.
Drayage companies like RelyEx allow flower shippers to send their products from Argentinian ports to airports in the Netherlands with peace of mind because their products are protected. The only way to accomplish this feat is with the help of swift, meticulous port drayage services. Drayage companies allow flower shippers to send their products from Argentinian ports to airports in the Netherlands with peace of mind, because their products are protected. The only way to accomplish this feat is with the help of swift, meticulous port drayage services.
If port drayage is compromised, it can cause delays and even fines. You know the packages you get delivered to your front door from apps like Amazon? Without drayage and drayage brokers, one or two-day shipping times wouldn't even be possible.
As a multi-billion-dollar industry in the U.S. alone, it seems like drayage shipping issues shouldn't exist. But the fact is inefficiencies and congestion are still major problems at ports. Whether it's a lack of carriers, absent chassis, or overburdened terminals, delays lead to missed deadlines, lost revenue, and worse.
But anytime challenges exist, so too do innovative solutions.QUOTE REQUEST
At RelyEx, we like to consider ourselves problem solvers. The nature of the container drayage industry presents new challenges every day, but we're firm believers that there's a solution to every hurdle we encounter. And while some drayage businesses implement a reactive approach, RelyEx customers choose us for our proactive mindset. We take pride in solving your company's drayage challenges to help you avoid frustrating fees, missed expectations, and delayed shipments. We strive to make every transaction successful and streamlined by partnering with shippers who prioritize transparent, prompt, and accurate communication.
RelyEx approaches your business from the customer's perspective - a unique approach that helps us provide high-quality, effective drayage services. We've been in the customers' shoes, know their pain points, and because of that, provide first-hand solutions to stressful supply chain issues. With over 30 years of collective knowledge, our team excels in:
Our varied, high-level drayage shipping experience helps us achieve our overarching goal: expertly managing your freight movement needs. That way, you can direct your time and focus on growing the core aspects of your business while we handle the heavy lifting. Throw in proactive planning to avoid bottleneck situations and strong communication for transparent customer relations, and you can see why so many companies trust RelyEx.
When it comes to shipping logistics, it only takes one mistake by a mediocre worker to disrupt your business. That's why, at RelyEx, we pride ourselves on forming and nurturing relationships with carriers who match our standards of care. Our founding partner started his career transporting freight for companies as an on-demand carrier. He uses that knowledge to maximize the resources of our carriers so that our customer's expectations aren't just met - they're exceeded.
Based in the port city of Front Royal, RelyEx has a keen understanding of the challenges of managing the inbound and outbound flow of containers. Our team of container drayage experts provides your business with unique solutions to nuanced shipping problems, minimizing demurrage and ensuring the successful delivery of your freight.
Customers choose RelyEx because:
Some drayage brokers don't care how customers feel about their service as long as they sign a contract and get paid. As a solutions-oriented team, RelyEx takes the opposite approach. We're motivated by the opportunity to overachieve for our customers and to provide them with the best logistics experience possible. With professional experience as carriers and shippers ourselves, we know the roadblocks and challenges you're facing. We excel at mapping out the best plans of action to solve those problems. But that's just the start.
Our tracking experts monitor and manage every aspect of your drayage shipment from booking to delivery, 24/7. Once booked, we look for the availability of your containers hourly once they're at port. When they arrive, our team acts quickly to access your storage containers when they're available.
Plus, RelyEx ensures your company's requirements are met by the carrier during loading and delivery and provide necessary documentation as fast as possible. With real-time tracking updates and access to our customer service professionals, your team has complete visibility throughout the shipping process.
Over the years, RelyEx has built a strong network of drayage carriers, transloading locations, and container storage spaces to provide you with the best possible options to match your drayage service needs. We know that searching for quality service presents an added layer of complexity and stress to our customers. That's why we work hard to take that off your plate by connecting you with our reliable shipping partners.
With a background moving freight as an on-demand carrier, our founding partner understands how to maximize the resources and equipment of our carriers to match your needs.
Like other industries, the global logistics space is complex. Mistakes will be made, and problems will happen. With those truths in mind, RelyEx has built its reputation as problem solvers. Unlike other drayage companies, we don't shy away from this industry's complexities because we take pride in solving problems. Even better, we aim to do what's needed to avoid those problems altogether.
As your logistics partner, we will provide your company with accurate, transparent, and prompt communication. If there are unexpected issues, we'll notify you immediately and will provide several options to remedy the problem. We even offer custom reporting for large clients who need at-the-moment updates and quick access to shipment documentation.
Why let the unpredictability of your industry dictate your success? With a background working in manufacturing, our founders are familiar with the demands of managing production schedules and sales orders. That experience makes it abundantly clear to us that every business and industry is different. If you struggle with seasonal surges or other factors, our team supports your business with a mapped-out plan and schedule, so you stay ahead of the game.QUOTE REQUEST
Typically, shippers need four specific documents to clear shipments through customs: A Bill of Lading (or BOL), a commercial invoice, a packing list, and an arrival notice. Seasoned drayage brokers like RelyEx are used to preparing these documents, but new shippers tend to miss this step due to inexperience.
If a shipper only pays for part of their shipment, a vessel operator may refuse to release their freight until their bill is fully paid. Payment delays lead to cargo detention at the port of entry, which triggers demurrage charges.QUOTE REQUEST
Paperwork is needed when you're shipping goods with a drayage company. When documents like the Certificate of Origin or Bill of Lading arrive at their destination late, you can expect demurrage fees. RelyEx avoids this situation entirely by being proactive when submitting paperwork.
Additional causes for demurrage fees can include:
At RelyEx, we know first-hand how stressful supply chain problems can be for business owners. Though drayage shipping might seem minor on the surface, it affects every stage of your shipping process. And when inevitable hurdles manifest, RelyEx propels you over the proverbial roadblocks with a proactive mindset and a passion for challenging projects. We believe that all problems have a solution, and our unique vantage point allows us to provide first-hand solutions to customers in a wide array of industries.
When it comes to your business, don't settle for anything less than RelyEx. Contact our office today to learn more about how we make your shipping experience streamlined and stress-free.843-885-3082
St. John the Baptist Church in Front Royal was dedicated in 1884. (FILE)Civilian Conservation Corps workers build Skyline Drive in 1933, elevating Front Royal’s profile. (NPS.GOV | COURTESY)Christendom College campus as seen circa 1979, when the school started its first academic year in Front Royal. (COURTESY)Seton Spiritual Director Fr. Vincent P. Miceli poses with the entire Seton Home Study School staff (from left) Julie Luckey, Mary Kay Clark, Fr. Miceli, Judy Ratgan, and Barbara Plaughler circa 1985. (COURTESY...
St. John the Baptist Church in Front Royal was dedicated in 1884. (FILE)
Civilian Conservation Corps workers build Skyline Drive in 1933, elevating Front Royal’s profile. (NPS.GOV | COURTESY)
Christendom College campus as seen circa 1979, when the school started its first academic year in Front Royal. (COURTESY)
Seton Spiritual Director Fr. Vincent P. Miceli poses with the entire Seton Home Study School staff (from left) Julie Luckey, Mary Kay Clark, Fr. Miceli, Judy Ratgan, and Barbara Plaughler circa 1985. (COURTESY)
Cloistered Dominican nuns moved to Linden from West Springfield, Mass. in 2008. (FILE)
What was once known as “Helltown” in the late 18th century — due to the working men who ventured over from the nearby Shenandoah River seeking alcohol — has emerged in the 21st century as a place for thousands of Catholics seeking a deeper relationship with God and one another.
Front Royal is the seat of Warren County, which grew more than 10 percent between 2010 and July 2022, according to the Census Bureau, bringing the population to 41,440. New faces at St. John the Baptist Church in Front Royal are growing at a faster clip lately. Nearly 1,000 new people have registered with the parish this year compared to 2020, raising the number of total parishioners from 4,559 to 5,552 — a 21 percent increase. While some are graduates of or affiliated with nearby Christendom College, others have no connection to the school. Eager to join the growing Catholic community, some even have bought homes through local real estate agents site unseen.
“I’ve talked to dozens of these families,” Father Michael R. Duesterhaus, a parochial vicar at St. John, said between Masses June 25. “They’re moving specifically to come to Front Royal. They want to be in a community where their kids are going to be supported.”
The influx to the northern edge of the Blue Ridge Mountains is at odds with national opinion surveys suggesting a rise in so-called “nones” — those without any affiliation to organized religion. While some denominations may be losing members due to disaffiliation, there are a growing number of Catholic institutions at least in this region. John Paul the Great Montessori Academy rents space in a Methodist church with declining attendance. Sts. Joachim and Anna Ukrainian Catholic Church celebrates weekly divine liturgies in a former Baptist church.
Approximately 30 Masses are celebrated each week collectively by parish staff and visiting clergy, between the parish chapel, local Catholic schools, St. Dominic’s Monastery in nearby Linden and occasionally Human Life International, a Catholic pro-life nonprofit. Father Duesterhaus credited Father Daniel N. Gee, pastor, and previous pastors, including Father Edward C. Hathaway and Father William Ruehl, for the parish’s growth, reverent liturgy and abundant confession opportunities (six days each week).
Edward and Michelle Kotulski joined the parish last fall, initially drawn to the area by Chelsea Academy, which offers a Catholic liberal arts education to grades K-12. Their two daughters attend. While living in Hawaii during Edward’s U.S. Marine Corps assignment there, Michelle discovered Chelsea online while researching the family’s plans to return to Virginia. They appreciate the parish’s traditional liturgy and worship.
“It’s a little gem,” she said. “It’s kind of hidden. You don’t really know that it’s here and how good the community is until you move here.”
Where it began
Longtime residents said that a series of successive developments in recent decades produced a snowball effect to raise Front Royal’s profile as a Catholic destination.
The earliest was the establishment of Christendom College’s campus in 1979. The college was founded by Warren H. Carroll two years earlier with an agreement to operate temporarily at St. Francis of Assisi Church in Triangle.
As college leaders searched for a permanent location, Thomas McFadden, then-president of Virginia Right to Life, suggested a facility in Front Royal used to train union organizers. The site, owned by the AFL-CIO (then led by George Meany), featured residential space, a kitchen and a swimming pool, and was managed by a fellow parishioner of McFadden’s. At the prompting of Arlington Bishop Thomas J. Welsh, retired Washington Archbishop Cardinal O’Boyle called Meany, a longtime friend, to advocate for Christendom’s bid to purchase the property. The bid was eventually accepted at a discounted rate, according to a history published on the college’s website.
No other location was ever seriously considered, said Anne Carroll, executive director of the Seton School in Manassas, who supported her husband Warren’s efforts to found the college. “It was a beautiful place and it met all our needs at the beginning,” she said.
While she called her late husband a long-term planner, the developments at Front Royal’s exceeded anyone’s expectations. “I don’t think even he with all his vision would have foreseen the rapid growth,” she said. “He would have been vastly overjoyed.”
She credited current President Tim O’Donnell’s “vital” work growing the college from its beginnings in her living room. “We started with nothing,” she said. “God is good all the time.”
Another building block for the growth to come was Anne’s establishment of Seton Home Study School in 1982, a program for homeschooling families that extended Seton School’s approach to Catholic education beyond Manassas. Soon, it was headquartered in Front Royal, with Mary Kay Clark as director and, later, separately incorporated. Demand for its educational resources surged, and more homeschool families came to the area.
By the time Tom McFadden moved to Front Royal in 2000, it was well-established as a magnet for homeschooling families who wanted to commune with like-minded Catholics. McFadden, Christendom’s vice president for enrollment and student success and a St. John parishioner, said that the rising cost of housing reached the point around 2005 that more people were willing to take on longer commutes, including the 70-mile trip to Washington. The growing population led national retail chains to open local operations.
“There was life and vibrancy and things to do in Front Royal and in the area,” he said, which led more of the college’s students to stay after graduation and other alumni to move back.”
During the COVID-19 pandemic, Northern Virginia lockdowns fueled another surge in interest and real estate transactions, McFadden said.
The community has produced many vocations to religious life. Christendom counts 23 alumni priests in the Arlington diocese. In the past four years, St. John has hosted seven first Masses of priestly sons of the parish.
Father Philip Briggs is among them. His mother, Nancy, moved to Front Royal in the mid-1980s when her husband, Doug, took a job at the college. She said the parish population was elderly and there were few young families. Scanning the congregation for teen girls who could babysit her young children, she could identify just three potential candidates — and two were sisters. She said the composition of newcomers is broader than just homeschoolers now, with more singles and younger people relocating here.
Catholic schooling evolves
In 2008, Chelsea Academy opened, giving parents a Catholic education alternative to homeschooling. It expanded over the years to offer kindergarten through high school, and paved the way for a half-dozen other Catholic learning options, including all-boys, all-girls, Montessori and hybrid. Chelsea is moving to another location after recently concluding its last academic year on the campus of Human Life International, which has leased space to many Catholic organizations or Catholic-owned businesses since relocating from Gaithersburg, Md., to Front Royal in 1996. The Institute for Catholic Culture will move into the space Chelsea is vacating, said John Martin, chief advancement officer for HLI.
The large families and passenger vans may still occasionally raise eyebrows and turn heads among some locals, according to McFadden. As more Catholics relocate to the area and staff restaurants, buy real estate and pay taxes, however, their growing profile has increased awareness and acceptance overall.
“A perfect storm got it together,” McFadden said.
Schweers can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org.
A Front Royal timeline
1788 – Front Royal is incorporated, soon gaining a reputation as “Helltown”
1884 – St. John the Baptist Church is dedicated
1933 – Civilian Conservation Corps workers build Skyline Drive, elevating Front Royal’s profile
1979 – Christendom College begins its first academic year on the Front Royal campus, after two years in Triangle
1982 – Seton Home Study School is established
1989 – Population Research Institute is established
1996 – Human Life International relocates to Front Royal
2006 – Institute of Catholic Culture is established with operations in Front Royal
2008 – Chelsea Academy opens
2008 – Cloistered Dominican nuns move to Linden from West Springfield, Mass.
2015 – Sts. Joachim and Anna Ukrainian Catholic Church is established in Front Royal
Every fall sees large numbers of visitors heading to the Shenandoah National Park and Skyline Drive area in pursuit of the breathtaking fall foliage vistas. But if you’re seeking nature’s glory this year, make sure you catch the whole show! Mother Nature isn’t done after a day of stunning leaf changing displays in the splendor of fall. There’s an equally glorious display about to come: the star-filled night sky above Front Royal, Va.Today, ...
Every fall sees large numbers of visitors heading to the Shenandoah National Park and Skyline Drive area in pursuit of the breathtaking fall foliage vistas. But if you’re seeking nature’s glory this year, make sure you catch the whole show! Mother Nature isn’t done after a day of stunning leaf changing displays in the splendor of fall. There’s an equally glorious display about to come: the star-filled night sky above Front Royal, Va.
Today, light pollution has made stargazing difficult for those living in highly populated, metro areas. That’s yet another reason to escape to the Front Royal area this fall so you can enjoy the night sky the way it should be seen.
Skyline Drive and its home, the Shenandoah National Park are incredible leaf-peeping destinations. It’s not surprising that the park is something of a national treasure in the fall. And the northern entrance station to the park is conveniently located right in the town of Front Royal. See here for a handy list of leaf-peeping spots near the Front Royal entrance station.
George Washington National Forest is another great option for fall outdoor adventure in the Front Royal area. The National Forest is full of hiking and biking trails, and boasts great locations for camping and fishing. If you’re looking for scenic views in the George Washington National Forest, check out the Buzzard Rock hike. You’ll follow a wooded trail before emerging on the exposed rocks at the top of the mountain. From this vantage point, enjoy stunning views of the surrounding countryside. There’s a good chance you’ll even see some buzzards soaring through the skies.
Why leave when there is more to see? For those in search of the thrill of gazing at a starlit sky, there are two parks in the Front Royal area that offer particularly outstanding displays.
The first is Shenandoah National Park. To maximize your night sky viewing in the national park, head to one of the top stargazing areas. The Big Meadows area is a sought-after stargazing spot, and the location of Shenandoah National Park’s formal astronomy program. The Skyland Amphitheater is another favorite stargazing spot in the park. Making arrangements for a campsite, cabin, or hotel room in Shenandoah National Park is a great way to enjoy some stargazing without having to make a long trip home at night.
On the other side of Front Royal, another great option is Sky Meadows State Park. Sky Meadows offers such great night sky views, that it’s recently become an officially designated Dark Sky Park. The park typically closes at dusk, but check their schedule of events for the popular Astronomy for Everyone program. For these family friendly events, the park stays open after dark, and you can enjoy a guided stargazing experience. Or if you want a real stargazing adventure, plan on using their primitive hike-in tent camping site and spending a memorable night under the stars.
If you’ve spent the day out leaf peeping and are planning a night of star gazing, you’ll want to fit dinner somewhere in between! Another great reason to make the Front Royal area your fall destination is the number of conveniently located gourmet eateries available. Head back to town around dinner time, and you can take your pick from craft breweries such as Vibrissa Beer and Pavemint Taphouse, fine dining at Element on Main, or legendary pizza at Melting Pot. There’s plenty more to choose from too. You can make eating part of your adventure in Front Royal! See here for a more complete list of Front Royal’s restaurants.
There are few sights as captivating as a night sky filled with stars, or as stunning as the Blue Ridge mountains lit up with the colors of fall. Plan to enjoy both in Front Royal this year. A combination leaf-peeping star-gazing trip will leave you filled with awe at nature’s wonders.
All photos courtesy of Front Royal
HARRISONBURG — A jury found Jennifer Rae McDonald, a former executive director of the Front Royal-Warren County Economic Development Authority, guilty Wednesday of stealing $5.27 million from the government agency.The jury in the U.S. District Court for the Western District of Virginia, in Harrisonburg, found McDonald guilty of all 34 counts against her — federal charges of wire fraud, bank fraud, money laundering and aggravated identity theft.Jurors deliberated for about four hours on Wednesday bef...
HARRISONBURG — A jury found Jennifer Rae McDonald, a former executive director of the Front Royal-Warren County Economic Development Authority, guilty Wednesday of stealing $5.27 million from the government agency.
The jury in the U.S. District Court for the Western District of Virginia, in Harrisonburg, found McDonald guilty of all 34 counts against her — federal charges of wire fraud, bank fraud, money laundering and aggravated identity theft.
Jurors deliberated for about four hours on Wednesday before reaching unanimous verdicts early that afternoon. The verdict came on Day 20 of a trial that began in August but was fraught by delays for health-related reasons — an attorney and the defendant tested positive for COVID-19 and then McDonald underwent unexpected surgery to have a pacemaker installed.
Assistant U.S. attorneys Andrea Broach, Rachel Swartz and Sean Welsh represented the government. Federal public defenders Andrea Harris and Abigail Thibeault represented McDonald. U.S. Judge Elizabeth K. Dillon presided over the trial.
The U.S. government accused McDonald of using EDA funds without the board of directors’ permission to make real estate transactions for her financial gain. McDonald also used EDA funds to pay off credit card debts and loans for family members. Prosecutors also argued that McDonald lost hundreds of thousands of dollars through gambling, giving her a motive to take the money from the EDA.
The defense attorneys argued that McDonald spent the money with the EDA board of directors’ authority per a $6.5 million settlement agreement over sexual harassment and assault claims. The defense contended that the secret settlement deal allowed her to use EDA money in exchange for her silence about the harassment claims and the agreement. To keep the agreement a secret, the defense attorneys say McDonald and the EDA board of directors had to make the disbursements to her look like authorized transactions.
Prosecutors called 52 witnesses to the stand and presented thousands pages of documents in an effort to prove McDonald took money and then concocted several lies to cover up the fraud. The prosecution claimed McDonald tried to cover up her theft by claiming she won millions of dollars gambling. Then McDonald produced the purported secret settlement agreement, which Welsh said was a fake document she created.
McDonald had alleged that while she was employed with the EDA, then-County Administrator Douglas Stanley and a board of directors member made lewd comments to her on more than one occasion. McDonald has claimed a man involved in the real estate business community sexually assaulted her. Stanley denied the sexual harassment claims.
The defense called three witnesses, two of whom were questioned about an Oct. 22 incident in which McDonald claims former EDA board member Ronald Llewellyn made a lewd comment toward her. Llewellyn refuted the claim and said he was nowhere near McDonald or Warren County at the time. The second witness was Justin Simmons, who runs a coal company in West Virginia that employed McDonald after she left the EDA. Simmons corroborated McDonald’s claim.
McDonald did not testify on her own behalf.
Welsh said in his closing statements that McDonald took advantage of the community’s trust and used her position with the EDA in an effort to “live the high life” on the EDA’s — and thus the taxpayers’ — dime.
Thibeault described McDonald as a victim of sexual assault and harassment at the hands of men with power and influence in the Warren County community. Thibeault said that the men who testified against McDonald, including former county government officials and members of the EDA board of directors, had reason to lie on the witness stand to protect themselves.
A sentencing date has not been set.
Samuels Public Library in Front Royal received 600 complaints about 134 books since May.FRONT ROYAL, Va. — A public library in Front Royal is forced to make adjustments after concerns over sexually explicit material.The Warren County Board of Supervisors approved the typical $1 million budget for Samuels Public Library during a work session meet...
Samuels Public Library in Front Royal received 600 complaints about 134 books since May.
FRONT ROYAL, Va. — A public library in Front Royal is forced to make adjustments after concerns over sexually explicit material.
However, four of the five members voted to keep 75% of the funding for now. From July through September, the county will appropriate $256,000.
Supervisor Jay Butler said the county wanted to give the money quarterly to “work things out” with the library about books some parents deemed controversial and inappropriate for children. Butler agrees with the parents who vocalized their issues that some of the content are pornographic.
“If they want to keep it in the library, that’s up to them,” Butler told WUSA9. “We just don’t want to have that available. We’re just letting folks know that if our public money is going to be used, then it’s going to be under scrutiny.”
Butler did not say if the books still exist after the first quarter that the county will withhold the rest of the funding.
Samuels Public Library Executive Director Michelle Ross said the team is working with the board on a couple of compromises to avoid infringing on anyone’s rights.
Ross said the library board would still have to vote on the ideas which include creating a New Adults section to move content from the Young Adults section. There is a proposal to have new library cards that would give parents the option and authority on what kind of book their child can check out.
“We are really a beloved institution here in our community, so I don't think the board of supervisors wants to defund the library,” said Ross.
Since late May, the library received nearly 600 complaints about 134 books.
In a board meeting last week, dozens of parents, many affiliated with the online group “CleanUpSamuels,” called the books “disgusting” and demanded the library be held accountable.
“A library that threatens the innocence of children puts parents in a situation where they can't trust the same community they paid with their tax money to maintain,” said one mother.
There is also an overwhelming amount of support for the library, which also makes money through different donations. In the same board meeting, many community members favored protecting the library and keeping the books.
Sydney Patton questions if the complaints are more geared towards LGBTQ+ literature. She believes opponents cherry picked lines to get a reaction and failed to consider the entirety of the book and its cultural and creative context.
In her opinion, the library is being ransomed of its money to comply with demands from the opposing groups.
“We have always said you have the option not to look at the material,” said Patton. “If you don't want your child to have access to it, then don't check it out.”
“Where are they going to come next?” questioned Patton. “There are plenty of other sections in here that they can attack. There's material in here that I don't like but a well cultivated library has different opinions and should reflect the diversity of the community.”
An online petition to support the library has garnered more than 16,000 signatures.
It's been dry in the D.C. area, but the drought in Virginia's Shenandoah region is severe, and more communities there are enacting water restrictions.The town of Front Royal has been hit especially hard, since its entire water supply comes from the Shenandoah River. The town has been forced to put emergency water conservation rules into effect. As lawns turn brown and flowers wither in their pots, streams and creeks are flowing at a trickle — in some cases drying up altogether.The Shenandoah River is so low that people co...
It's been dry in the D.C. area, but the drought in Virginia's Shenandoah region is severe, and more communities there are enacting water restrictions.
The town of Front Royal has been hit especially hard, since its entire water supply comes from the Shenandoah River. The town has been forced to put emergency water conservation rules into effect. As lawns turn brown and flowers wither in their pots, streams and creeks are flowing at a trickle — in some cases drying up altogether.
The Shenandoah River is so low that people could stand in the middle of it while fishing.
A brief thunderstorm Thursday was not nearly enough to replenish the water supply.
"It's the first time in over 100 years that we’ve been in this extreme drought condition, and so we issued on Tuesday an emergency water conservation effort," Front Royal Town Manager Joe Waltz said.
All outdoor water use is barred, and the town's light posts are bare after flower baskets had to be removed.
The outdoor adventure companies along the Shenandoah are also feeling the impact. At Front Royal Outdoors, fall bookings are down 50%.
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"When July hit, the bottom dropped out, and a couple of weekends ago was the lowest I’ve ever seen the river," Front Royal Outdoors owner Don Roberts said.
But, as the view from the parking lot showed, there is still enough water in many spots to float and paddle. Roberts says he's making sure customers know the experience will be a bit different.
"We really have to try to educate the people that do come out, as to the fact it is very low," he said. "You will be getting in and out of your boats and walking in the river."
Front Royal residents have been warned to expect at least another month with some sort of water restrictions. Violations of the water rules could bring fines of $1,000, but no fine have been imposed.
Front Royal is just one of many communities with water restrictions in place.
In Shenandoah National Park, all streams are closed to fishing right now. The lack of water and the heat are severely stressing fish that are used to cooler conditions.
"We are already seeing some fish mortality, so we just don’t want to further stress then," Claire Comer with Shenandoah National Park said. "Even in those streams that are catch-and-release."
For hikers, spectacular waterfall views are gone for now as the drought reduces gushing torrents to a trickle.
But the biggest worry in the national park is a high danger of fire.
"Not throwing your cigarette out the window, or you know, something that people don't think about is, even [car] exhaust. That exhaust heat can ignite those extremely dry grasses," Comer said. "Park your car on durable surfaces, only on gravel or asphalt."