Inside the Isle Newsletter...February 2020
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Franklin Airport Renamed
Franklin Municipal Airport has officially been renamed Franklin Regional Airport. The name change was recommended by the Airport Advisory Board and approved by Franklin City Council in 2019. The request had been under review by the Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) and the Virginia Department of Aviation and was officially approved last month.

Franklin Regional Airport is located in Isle of Wight County and is owned and operated by the City of Franklin. It is a general aviation commercial airport catering primarily to private, military and corporate aircraft and serves Franklin, Isle of Wight and Southampton Counties. MORE
Grafik Trenz Celebrates Sweet 16
and New Smithfield Location
On January 31, 2020, Grafik Trenz, a full-service sign & screen printing shop, celebrated 16 years in business and a new, larger location at 1402 B South Church Street, Smithfield, with a ribbon cutting hosted by the Isle of Wight Chamber. The shop offers full-color banners, vehicle & trailer lettering and wraps, sports uniforms, embroidery and more! 
Congratulations to owner Anna Chapman!
Innovative Scheduling Program for Career Academy Students

In January, the Isle of Wight School Board approved the creation of a forward-thinking, year-long schedule that allows students to spend one whole week in their Career and Technical Education (CTE) Career Academy course, alternating with one week of core classes.  This pilot program will begin with the 2020-2021 school year.  Career Academy Programs include: Agriculture, Building Trades, Cosmetology, Culinary Arts, Nurse Aid and Welding.

As part of the schools’ redesign of the CTE program, an emphasis has been placed on developing high-quality internships and apprenticeships with area business partners. Businesses have been fully supportive of this initiative, indicating that the traditional high school schedule was not conducive to authentic, longitudinal, work-based experiences.

If your business is interested in partnering with Isle of Wight County Schools to offer internships and/or apprenticeships, please email Jeff Mordica or call 757-365-1635. MORE
Adult Welding Classes Offered
at Smithfield High School

Isle of Wight County Schools is offering an adult education welding program beginning February 25th. The 10-week program will be held in the welding lab at Smithfield High School on Tuesdays and Thursdays from 3:30 p.m. to 6:00 p.m.  Tuition is $220, which includes personal protection equipment. The classes are endorsed by the American Welding Society (AWS) and will provide safe, expert, step-by-step instruction. Students will also have an opportunity to participate in online certification testing.  Limited space available so sign up early!
For more information, contact Tawana Ford at or 757-542-3481.

 Isle of Wight County 17 17 15
 Town of Smithfield 5 5 10
 Town of Windsor 5 5 2
 TOTAL 27 27 27
*Includes home occupations and out-of-town contractors.

Download the Complete Business License List:  PDF Format (.pdf)  Excel Format (.xlsx)

New Business Highlights:
Joe's Pizza & Pasta Palace (new owner!)
Journey Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu
P&D Fumigation Company
Taylor Manufacturing & Design LLC

Tara's Youth Theater Company
We extend a warm welcome to all of our new businesses -- thank you for putting down roots to grow in Isle of Wight County!
Business License Renewal Time!
Attention Business Owners: It's time to renew your business licenses. Renew before the deadlines below in order to avoid penalties:
Isle of Wight County:
Monday, March 2, 2020

Town of Windsor:
Monday, March 2, 2020

Town of Smithfield:
Wednesday, April 15, 2020
Featured Available Property


Bring your ideas and your business to this commercial property on a busy road with great visibility. This 1.26 acre property includes two buildings. First is a former, partially-renovated convenience store that has a sign pole and lots of parking. The second is a two-bedroom one-bath, single-family home that is rented for additional income to supplement your business. Both located at the entrance of the Jones Creek Landing public boat ramp, which provides plenty of drive-by traffic. Would be a great place for a bait shop or boating accessory retail. Plenty of potential for someone with vision and a small business plan. MORE
For more information, contact Jon May,
Fathom Realty, 757-356-1226.

Search the County's available properties database for more commercial or industrial properties. If you own or represent a commercial property in Isle of Wight County that is available for sale or lease, please CONTACT US, and we will add it to our database.
NexGen Opportunity Fair
March 4th - Chesapeake

NextGen Opportunity Fair provides teens and young adults with an opportunity to gain access to employment, volunteer, and post-secondary education opportunities in the region. The Fair attracts more than 300 attendees and more than 80 vendors annually - successfully connecting businesses and organizations with the emerging workforce.
The next Fair will be held March 4, 2020 in Chesapeake. REGISTER TODAY!
(attendees and vendors)
Virginia Food & Beverage Expo
March 18th - Richmond Convention Center
Sponsored by the Virginia Department of Agriculture and Consumer Services (VDACS), the Virginia Food and Beverage Expo connects industry buyers with Virginia specialty food and beverage products. The trade event takes place once every two years to promote Virginia products and advance economic development. 

Retailers, wholesalers, distributors, food service representatives and those in search of private-label brands will find hundreds of Virginia-produced and processed products that are properly packaged and labeled for the retail setting. Attendees meet one-on-one with producers, select new items and place orders right on the show floor. There is no cost to attend.
Home-Based Business Conference 2020
CALLING ALL HOME-BASED BUSINESS OWNERS AND ENTREPRENEURS! You don’t want to miss the region’s 5th annual Home-Based Business Conference on Friday, March 20, 2020 at the Peninsula Workforce Development Center in Hampton. This unique event features a resource fair with over 20 exhibitors, as well as conference sessions and specialty breakout track focused on topics relevant to all stages and types of home-based businesses, including traditional, franchise, and direct and network marketing. Whether you are thinking of starting a new home-based business, or have operated one for years, this event is for you!
For more information, call 757-877-5920.
Virginia Agritourism Conference
March 30th - April 1st in Smithfield
The Virginia Cooperative Extension will host the 2020 Virginia Agritourism Conference March 30th - April 1st at The Smithfield Center. This three-day event includes farm tours and educational sessions on a variety of topics for both beginning and experienced agritourism producers.
For more information, contact Livvy Preisser,
Isle of Wight Extension Agent, at 757-365-6261 or REGISTER TODAY!

Economic Development Website

Economic Development Facebook Page

Isle of Wight County Website

ACT Work Ready Communities

Isle of Wight County Central Permitting

Newcomer's Guide

County Procurement Opportunities

Smithfield & Isle of Wight Tourism

Smithfield Farmers Market

Visit the Farms Brochure

Town of Smithfield

Smithfield 2020

Town of Windsor

Isle of Wight Chamber of Commerce

U.S. Small Business Administration

Virginia Economic Development Partnership

Port of Virginia

Virginia Department of Small Business & Supplier Diversity

Virginia Business

Virginia Small Business Financing Authority

eVA - Virginia's eProcurement Portal

Virginia Department of Agriculture & Consumer Services

Virginia Department of Housing & Community Development

Hampton Roads Economic Development Alliance

Hampton Roads Small Business Development Center

Hampton Roads Small Business Loans

757 Angels


ODU Institute for Innovation & Entrepreneurship

SCORE Hampton Roads

Isle of Wight County Schools

Paul D. Camp Community College

Hampton Roads Workforce Council

Blackwater Regional Library

Retail Alliance
Economic Development Staff:
Chris Morello

Kristi Sutphin
Economic Development Coordinator

Nicole Talton
Economic Development Coordinator

Gloria Spratley
Administrative Assistant


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Isle of Wight County Economic Development · 17146 Monument Circle · P.O. Box 80 · Isle of Wight, VA 23397 · USA

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