News of interest to Loudoun and Fauquier counties that appeared in the daily Post Oct. 17-23.

Sunday17

Race Turns Fiercely Personal

Candidates in the increasingly bitter race to represent Northern Virginia's 10th Congressional District have cast their contest in stark, personal terms that stray from the ever-present suburban flash points of traffic and schools. Challenger James Socas (D), a former investment banker, has portrayed 12-term incumbent Frank R. Wolf (R) as a right-wing religious extremist who is out of touch with a fast-changing district. Wolf, in turn, casts his opponent as a lightweight and reckless carpetbagger from California seeking to use his dot-com fortune to buy an election.

Monday18

A Pioneer at Secret Service

Barbara Riggs of Middleburg is the first female deputy director of the U.S. Secret Service and one of the highest-ranking female federal agents.

Thursday21

Hospital to Merge With Inova

The nonprofit Loudoun Healthcare Inc. has decided to merge with the Inova Health System, a move that could allow the only hospital in the nation's fastest-growing county to greatly expand its services and remain competitive with a second, for-profit hospital being planned nearby.

Friday22

Trying to Keep Dances Clean

It turns out that the students at Loudoun Valley High School will, in fact, be allowed to tango at Homecoming Dance. They can salsa and swing dance, too, Principal Gerald Black has promised, although they have all signed a pledge that they will "face each other" on the dance floor. Also on the pledge: no drugs, alcohol or "freak dancing."

Loudoun Valley and Loudoun County's other seven high schools are just the latest to grapple with the bumping and grinding club moves that have seeped into school dances across the Washington region and the nation the past couple of years.