News to Know for May 21: Democratic debate for governor; Regal cinemas reopening; Casino selection

News to Know for May 21: Democratic debate for governor; Regal cinemas reopening; Casino selection
The first televised debate of Virginia’s Democratic gubernatorial primary started out tame Tuesday evening, with almost 25 minutes of civil discussion about how the five candidates onstage plan to lead the state out of it. (Source: Virginia State University)

RICHMOND, Va. (WWBT) - Take a look at our top headlines before you head out the door!

Sunny, Low Humidity

Beautiful Friday weather with lots of dry heat in the week ahead.

Mostly sunny. Low Humidity. Best weather day of the week!

Highs in the mid 80s, cooler again along the Bay.

Friday Forecast: Sunny and warm with low humidity

Latest On Israel

The 11-day war left more than 200 dead — the vast majority Palestinians — and brought widespread devastation to the already impoverished Hamas-ruled Gaza Strip.

Thousands took to the streets of Gaza as the cease-fire took hold at 2 a.m.

Israel and the Palestinian militant group Hamas have agreed to a cease-fire, after more than a week of conflict left hundreds dead.
Israel and the Palestinian militant group Hamas have agreed to a cease-fire, after more than a week of conflict left hundreds dead. (Source: CNN)

Young men waved Palestinian and Hamas flags, passed out sweets, honked horns and set off fireworks.

Spontaneous celebrations also broke out in east Jerusalem and across the occupied West Bank.

Gubernatorial Debate

Five candidates took the stage Thursday, May 20, with one common goal: winning over voters before they head to the polls on June 8.

The candidates discussed where they stand on vaccines coming out of a pandemic, as well as other issues such as health insurance and educational opportunities.

The first televised debate of Virginia’s Democratic gubernatorial primary started out tame Tuesday evening, with almost 25 minutes of civil discussion about how the five candidates onstage plan to lead the state out of it.
The first televised debate of Virginia’s Democratic gubernatorial primary started out tame Tuesday evening, with almost 25 minutes of civil discussion about how the five candidates onstage plan to lead the state out of it. (Source: Virginia State University)

Ahead of next month’s primary, McAuliffe, the favorite in the race took a slightly different approach this time around.

Theaters Set To Open Today

Four Regal theatres are set to reopen in the metro Richmond area on May 14.

The theatres will also have limited capacity limits. Starting on May 15, the venues will be able to operate at 50 percent capacity or 1,000 people.

Regal will open its Summerville and Mount Pleasant locations on Friday.
Regal will open its Summerville and Mount Pleasant locations on Friday. (Source: Regal)

Regal says Lionsgate’s Spiral will headline new movies, including Wrath of Man and Those Who Wish Me Dead. 

Other titles will also be included.

Kings Dominion Opens! 🎢

Kings Dominion will open for the 2021 season on Saturday, May 22.

In accordance with CDC and state guidelines, the park has updated its COVID-19 protocols.

All guests who are 5 and older and not fully vaccinated will be required to wear a facemask outdoors when they are unable to social distance except on water attractions, while in Soak City Waterpark, or in RelaxZones, and while indoors unless actively eating or drinking.

For those who are fully vaccinated, face coverings are not required. More details on COVID-19 protocols can be found, here.

Mobile Vaccines

Governor Ralph Northam took to Twitter Thursday evening to announce that next week, the Virginia Department of Health and Virginia Department of Emergency Management will deploy several mobile vaccination units.

NEW: Next week, the Virginia Department of Health and Virginia Department of Emergency Management will deploy several...

Posted by Governor of Virginia on Thursday, May 20, 2021

These health organizations will provide free COVID-19 vaccines to underserved communities across the state.

Learn more here.

Vaccine Clinic At RPS

Richmond Public Schools will be hosting a special vaccination event at George Wythe High School for students ages 12 and older.

The vaccine clinic will be held on May 22 from 11 a.m. to 3 p.m.

(Source: Richmond Public Schools)

RPS nurses will be staffed to administer the vaccines.

A parent or guardian must sign a consent form for a child aged 12-15 to receive the vaccine.

RPS Hiring Bus Drivers

The demand for school bus drivers is growing in Richmond as school leaders prepare for the start of the school year on Sept. 8.

The school district says they have 25 vacant positions to fill. This summer, they anticipate this number to grow to 40.

The district will also hold a job fair at Arthur Ashe Center on Saturday.

The bus driver job fair at Arthur Ashe Center will take place this Saturday from 9 a.m. to 12 p.m. For more information, click here.

Virtual Academy Deadline

Henrico County Public Schools (HCPS) announcing the creation of “Henrico Virtual Academy” set to open in Fall 2021.

Students would learn in both synchronous and asynchronous methods, like the way virtual learning is done currently due to the COVID-19 pandemic.

(Source: HCPS)

However, they would be required to have their cameras on and interacting during the lesson.

The application window to enroll in the virtual academy will close on May 21.

Henrico Rent Relief Deadline

Henrico County announced they will be ending the county’s Emergency Rental Assistance program.

The county says they are ending the program because the state is now available to help residents who may need help with rent due to the pandemic.

The last day to apply for Henrico’s Rental Assistance program is May 21. After May 21, residents needing help should contact the Virginia Rent Relief Program.

To apply for the Virginia Rent Relief Program, click here.

Casino Selection

The city of Richmond is now betting on a single casino project to move forward. Thursday, an advisory panel announced ONE Casino + Resort could bring the massive development to south Richmond.

Urban One, Inc. is behind the $517 million proposal. The 300,000 square foot facility is slated to be built just off Interstate 95 on the city’s southside.

Bally's is one of three casino options on the table for the Richmond area.
Bally's is one of three casino options on the table for the Richmond area. (Source: Hand-out)

Touted as the nation’s only black-owned casino, the project offers up to 150 hotel rooms along with a dozen bars and restaurants and plenty of gaming space.

It also has the backing of Mayor Levar Stoney who also promised a public meeting about the decision next Tuesday with city councilors.

Look Before You Lock!

As temperatures start to rise, the Virginia Department of Motor Vehicles is urging drivers never to leave children or pets in a hot vehicle.

In 2020, there were 24 children who died in the United States as the result of being left in a hot car, the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration reports.

(Source: {WBRC})

Children and pets are especially prone to be harmed by heatstroke.

Officials said it is always good to “look before you lock.” A helpful reminder could be to put a toy in the back seat when it is empty and move it to the front seat as a visual reminder when there is a child or animal in the back seat.

Final Thought

Pity is a paralyzing mental luxury - Will Durant

Copyright 2021 WWBT. All rights reserved.

Want NBC12’s top stories in your inbox each morning? Subscribe here.