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May 7, 2014

Faces of Fauquier: Second job all about weekend “fun”

Photo/Cassandra Brown
“I like the customer interaction,” Ms. Strain says. “It’s my fun job. You meet a lot of fun people.”
I wouldn’t change anything (about Fauquier County), except maybe fix some of the roads and fix the winery ordinance.
By .(JavaScript must be enabled to view this email address)
Staff Journalist
Holding two jobs, this amiable lady enjoys meeting the people of Fauquier and those who visit the county.

On the weekends, Melissa Strain works as a tasting room attendant at Marterella Winery, nestled on the outskirts of Warrenton.

“I like the customer interaction,” Ms. Strain says. “It’s my fun job. You meet a lot of fun people.”

Pouring Merlot, Chardonnay and other wines, she explains the tastes and tells patrons what food pairs well with each.

She also loves her other job, driving a bus for Fauquier County Public Schools the past 18 years in the northern and central regions.

An outdoor enthusiast, she enjoys hiking and camping with her family.

She describes Fauquier County as “quiet and rural. No traffic. I love being out in the country.”

• Age

• Home

• Work
Part-time tasting room attendant at Marterella Winery in Warrenton for almost a year. Full-time bus driver for Fauquier County Public Schools in the northern and central regions for 18 years. Also trains new bus drivers.

• Why you do the job?
I like the customer interaction. It’s my fun job. You meet a lot of fun people. I had past customer service experience working at FedEx for 13 years.

• Family
Husband, Bryan, and two teenage sons, Brady and Brandon.

• Education
Herndon High School, 1985.

• How long have you lived in Fauquier?
Since 1988 — 26 years.

• Why do you live here?
It’s quiet and rural. No traffic. I love being out in the country.

• How do you describe this county?
The quiet, friendly and beautiful countryside.

• What would you change about Fauquier?
I wouldn’t change anything, except maybe fix some of the roads and fix the winery ordinance.

• What do you do for fun?

I go camping, hiking, skiing. We just planted a garden this year — tomatoes, lettuce, green beans, etc. I like to go to the movies and hang out with friends.

• What’s your favorite place in Fauquier?
Sky Meadows State Park and Marterella Winery.

• What will Fauquier be like in 10 years?
I’m afraid it’s going to be overgrown.

• Favorite TV show?
“I Love Lucy.” That’s my all time favorite.

• Favorite movie?

“Grease,” I could watch it over and over and not get sick of it.

• Favorite book?

“Marley and Me” by John Grogan and “Weekends with Daisy” by Sharron Kahn Luttrell. I love dog books.

• Favorite vacation spot?

The Outer Banks. We go skiing in the winter and go to the beach in the summer.

• Favorite food?
Mexican, Thai, Italian — anything really.

• What is the best advice you have ever received? From whom?

Do what makes you happy. It’s what I live by.

• Who’s your hero and why?
My dad, because he raised four children as a single parent. My mom died when I was young.

• What would you do if you won $1 million in the lottery?
Pay off debt and probably buy homes for both my children, wherever they wanted. Probably move out West.

>> Suggest a “Faces of Fauquier” profile subject

Do you know someone who lives in Fauquier County you would like to see in Faces of Fauquier? E-mail Cassandra Brown at .(JavaScript must be enabled to view this email address) or Editor Lou Emerson at .(JavaScript must be enabled to view this email address).

Previous Faces of Fauquier:

• Bartender Taylor Edgar has a pretty good standup routine.

• A nomad childhood led Paul Schmeling to start a moving company.

• Adam Lynch’s family owns café with local food focus and a special name.

• Patricia McMahon Rice turns passion for art into her livelihood.

• Cindy D’Ambro works as “director of first impressions” at LFCC.

• Ginger Hilleary leads local literacy organization.

• Farmers with groundhog problems call Rod Kirkpatrick.

• Horses “retire” to work with Jeanne Blackwell.

• Remington cattle farmer Doug Linton loves his home and work.

• Sports central to Robert Glascock’s life’s work.

• For Richard Mast, company ownership started with his summer work as a teenager.

• Bernice Simpson knows northern Fauquier back roads and the people who live along them.

• Eddie Payne has logged 38 years as a volunteer firefighter in Marshall.

• Stephanie Layton turns her lifelong passion for dance into her livelihood.

• Shawn LaRue matches children and adoptive families.

• Biker and psychology major Clif Stroud makes music in a big way.

• Becky Crouch greets lots of visitors.

• She helped blaze trail to equality for black teachers.

• Family and food come first for Marshall pizzeria employee.

• Rural “closeness” of Fauquier appeals to Kansas native

• A “spoke” in the wheel of preservation.

• His job dovetails with passion for hunting

• Veteran educator sees the potential in every child.

• His passions: Fixing cars and helping people

• Habitat ReStore volunteer appreciates Fauquier’s diversity.

• Dad’s example led to new career at Fauquier Hospital.

• He lives and works in a beautiful place.

• The Goldvein firehouse ranks as his favorite place.

• Pretty things everywhere she looks.

• Through scouting, he encourages girls to explore.

• One day, he might run the company.

• FISH volunteer likes to help others.

• She sees the community’s generosity.

• Cop patrols while most people sleep.

• Pastor a constant in Calverton.

• She keeps the courthouse spotless.

• He loves working working outdoors at the park.

• She sees “everyone” at Carousel

• Library assistant works in a “fun place"

• Hat lady sets up shop in Old Town Warrenton
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