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Archive for May, 2012

One Million Reasons to Celebrate

by Casey | Posted on May 24th, 2012

Visitation to Virginia.org is nearing the 1,000,000 mark and our prize packs are winding down in the Share the Love, Be One in a¬†Million Sweepstakes. Still up for grabs is prize 8 – four season passes to Kings Dominion with the platinum dining option included. We’ll draw three winners – very soon -¬†who will each recieve the KD pack valued at $780 each.

JUST UNLOCKED is Prize 9! We’ll randomly draw two winners for this prize pack valued at $1,020. Will it be you? Enter now and don’t forget to share your entry with friends and family to receive up to 10 extra entries!

Skyland Resort at Shenandoah National Park. Photo by Kelly J. Mihalcoe LLC.

Skyland Resort at Shenandoah National Park.

* $50 dining card for Skyland Resort or Big Meadows Lodge in Shenandoah National Park.

Hot Air Balloon. Photo by Casey Higgins.

Hot Air Balloon.

* Hot air balloon ride for four.

Thomas Jefferson's Monticello. Photo by Stephanie Gross.

Thomas Jefferson's Monticello.

 * Presidents Pass for four to include visits to Monticello

Ash Lawn-Highland. Home of President James Monroe. Photo by Bill Crabtree, Jr.

Ash Lawn-Highland. Home of President James Monroe.

 * Ash Lawn-Higland

Montpelier. Home of James and Dolley Madison.

Montpelier. Home of James and Dolley Madison.

 * and Montpelier.

Luray Caverns - Totem Pole Valley. Photo by Mark Delsasso.

Luray Caverns - Totem Pole Valley.

* Admission for four to explore Luray Caverns.

So what are you waiting for? If you enter soon, you’ll be eligible¬†to win¬†prize 9¬†(the items listed above), as well as¬†the Kings Dominion prize pack. Enter Now

LOVE is at the heart of every Virginia vacation. Virginia is for Lovers.



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How About an Old School Road Trip?

by Casey | Posted on May 23rd, 2012

You remember those places you loved¬†back in the day? You know – that¬†diner that’s been serving the best BBQ since your¬†grandma was a teenager, piling up into the bed of the truck to watch a flick or two at the drive-in movie theater, or the handmade ice cream cones that the franchises still can’t beat? Yeah. Those were the days …

Doumar's, 1957

Doumar's, 1957

Why let those awesome memories stay memories? Make some new ones and share those experiences with your kids. I certainly am!

To get you in the spirit and officially launch this idea of revisiting our “old school” treasures for new memory making, join the Virginia is for Lovers staff at Doumar’s Cones¬†& Barbecue¬†in Norfolk tomorrow at 2 p.m.

Doumar’s is a legendary drive-in restaurant named for the family that INVENTED the ice cream cone. Yep. Invented.

Why come out?

Because you know you love a little nostalgia.

Because Guy Fieri’s been there and he loved it.

Because you love¬†ice cream and we’re giving away 100 FREE ICE CREAM CONES.

And because you love Virginia is for Lovers and we’re giving away vintage swag.

Doumar’s – 1919 Monticello Avenue * Norfolk, VA 23517 – 2 p.m.

The 100 free ice cream cones are available until 3 p.m. or until all 100 or gone, so don’t be late!



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Small Towns, Big Charm

by Casey | Posted on May 22nd, 2012

We’re always happy to tout Virginia’s small towns, but when media and acclaimed travel writers take note, you should definitely pay attention and book a weekend of big charm.

A.V. Symington Aquatic Center, Leesburg

A.V. Symington Aquatic Center, Leesburg

Though Money Magazine identified five Virginia localities among its list of¬†Best Places to Live 2011, that doesn’t mean you need to relocate to one of them (although you can if you want). Visits to the¬†Leesburg (#4), Herndon (#34), Montclair (#35), Oakton (#36), or Manassas Park (#56) areas might just be the relaxing, quiet getaway you need.

Leesburg children noted their favorite places around town as being Leesburg Restaurant, Freedom Park, The Pink Shop, Lola Cookies & Treats, and the A.V. Symington Aquatic Center. Perhaps your kids would enjoy the same locations.

Staunton recently received the honor of being listed as one of The 20 Best Small Towns in America by Smithsonian Magazine. Why so great? The culture is astounding, taking visitors from the frontier to the Civil War, and incorporating a little Elizabethan flare, too. The food and the arts might make you extend your visit. Children enjoy the interactive Kids’ Corner at the Woodrow Wilson Presidential Library and Museum, as well as taking a ride on the Gypsy Express at Gypsy Hill Park.

Barter Cafe, Abingdon

Barter Cafe, Abingdon

Frommer’s is a go-to for travelers seeking a new vacation destination, and the publication has given a nod to their favorite Virginia small towns in their The Best Small Towns and Villages article for Virginia.

In addition to Staunton, Lexington, Middleburg, Abingdon, and Monterey are included. Middleburg for its notable horse country esteem and upscale shopping; Lexington for its collegiate atmosphere and Civil War roots; Monterey for its New England-esque feel (though it’s called Virginia’s Little Switzerland); and Abingdon for its pioneering roots and culture.

So which charming small town will you venture through?

Trip Ideas:

LOVE is at the heart of every Virginia vacation. Virginia is for Lovers.
Request your free Virginia Travel Guide.



Destinations, Family | 1 Comment

Virginia’s Blue Ridge Railroad Heritage

by Casey | Posted on May 21st, 2012

Experience the splendor of the Roanoke Valley on a Blue Ridge Mountain Getaway all about the railroad.

Visit the Virginia Museum of Transportation, celebrating the road, rail, and air. It alone will fire your imagination with decades-old steam, diesel, and electric locomotives. Little ones love the model trains, but their moms and dads might just enjoy the buggies and Jupiter Rocket just as much.
Admission: $8/adult, $7/senior, $6/child (3-11)
Hours: Mon-Sat 10 am to 5 pm; Sun 1 to 5 pm

One of O. Winston Link's iconic photographs. Courtesy of O. Winston Link Museum.

One of O. Winston Link's iconic photographs. Courtesy of O. Winston Link Museum.

The O. Winston Link Museum is home to more than 300 of Winston Link’s dramatic black and white Norfolk¬†& Western Railway photographs from the 1950s. Browse through seven galleries of the distinct images focusing on life along the railway,¬†and also check out the 30-minute documentary.
Admission: $5/adult, $4.50/senior, $4/child (3-11)
Hours: 10 am to 5 pm daily

Families interested in both the Virginia Museum of Transportation and the O. Winston Link Museum can indeed visit both, and at a reduced rate: $12/adult, $10/senior, $8/child

Stay a while with a train themed travel package!

From $177 — Hotel Roanoke offers the Train Lover’s Package to include one night in a room overlooking the railroad, breakfast for two, two tickets to the O. Winston Link Museum, and two tickets to the Virginia Museum of Transportation.

 

LOVE is at the heart of every Virginia vacation. Virginia is for Lovers.
Request your free Virginia Travel Guide. 



Destinations, Family, History, Travel Ideas | 2 Comments

PHOTOS: Where to Go this Memorial Day

by Casey | Posted on May 21st, 2012

A¬†three-day getaway is¬†a¬†rejuvenating way for¬†your family to reconnect,¬†and you¬†can do just that while visiting the historic sites that honor America’s fallen heroes this Memorial Day weekend in Virginia.

The U.S. Marine Corps War Memorial (also known as the Iwo Jima Memorial) is dedicated to all Marines who've given their lives in defense of the United States since 1775. It is the largest cast-bronze statue in the world. Photo by Bill Crabtree, Jr.

The U.S. Marine Corps War Memorial (also known as the Iwo Jima Memorial) is dedicated to all Marines who've given their lives in defense of the United States since 1775. It is the largest cast-bronze statue in the world. Photo by Bill Crabtree, Jr.

Near the Arlington National Cemetery is the United States Marine Corps War Memorial. On summer Tuesday afternoons you’ll find the U.S. Marine Drum and Bugle Corps performing “The Commandant’s Own” and performing precision drills. This Sunset Parade is open to the public and free of charge.

Specialist Joseph L. Hull of the 3rd U.S. Infantry, also known as the Old Guard, maintains a faithful vigil at the Tomb of the Unknown in Arlington National Cemetery. Photo by CameronDavidson@CameronDavidson.com.

Specialist Joseph L. Hull of the 3rd U.S. Infantry, also known as the Old Guard, maintains a faithful vigil at the Tomb of the Unknown in Arlington National Cemetery. Photo by CameronDavidson@CameronDavidson.com.

Every conflict in which the United States has ever fought is represented by more than 200,000 veterans and their dependents who are laid to rest at the 612-acre Arlington National Cemetery.

Memorial Amphitheater at Arlington National Cemetery. A shrine to the thousands who have died in foreign wars and domestic to keep our country free. Established as a national cemetery in 1864 by Brig. Gen. Montgomery C. Meigs, it was the ancestral home of Robert E. Lee. Photo by CameronDavidson@CameronDavidson.com.

Memorial Amphitheater at Arlington National Cemetery. A shrine to the thousands who have died in foreign wars and domestic to keep our country free. Established as a national cemetery in 1864 by Brig. Gen. Montgomery C. Meigs, it was the ancestral home of Robert E. Lee. Photo by CameronDavidson@CameronDavidson.com.

The fife and drums corp of Colonial Williamsburg, led by Lance Pedigo. Photo by CameronDavidson@CameronDavidson.com.

The fife and drums corp of Colonial Williamsburg, led by Lance Pedigo. Photo by CameronDavidson@CameronDavidson.com.

Colonial Williamsburg is America’s largest living history museum, consisting of 301 acres and 88 original 18th-century buildings. Dine in one of the four taverns, browse The Art Museums of Colonial Williamsburg, and of course, participate in the period activities.

Virginia War Memorial. Photo by Scott K. Brown.

Virginia War Memorial. Photo by Scott K. Brown.

 The Virginia War Memorial in Richmond includes the Shrine of Memory Рa place to read more than 11,600 names of Virginia veterans who perished in war. The Memorial honors all veterans, but particularly those killed in World War II, Korean, Vietnam, and the Persian Gulf Wars. Also see the Torch of Liberty eternal flame, a reflecting pool, rose garden, and more.

The National D-Day Memorial. Photo by Tony Hall.

The National D-Day Memorial. Photo by Tony Hall.

Why is Bedford, Virginia the location of the National D-Day Memorial? The town that suffered the highest per capita D-Day losses became the home of the Memorial, and that was Bedford. The Memorial pays tribute to the Allied Forces who participated in the largest land, sea, and air military operation in history Рthe invasion of Normandy on June 6, 1944.

The Appomattox Court House National Historical Park commemorates the heroic acts which took place in April of 1865.  General Robert E. Lee surrendered to Lt. General Ulysses S. Grant at the Appomattox Court House to end the Civil War. Photo by CameronDavidson@CameronDavidson.com.

The Appomattox Court House National Historical Park commemorates the heroic acts which took place in April of 1865. General Robert E. Lee surrendered to Lt. General Ulysses S. Grant at the Appomattox Court House to end the Civil War. Photo by CameronDavidson@CameronDavidson.com.

Take the walking tour of the grounds at Appomattox Court House. The buildings are original and have been restored to their original condition. The McLean House is the location where Generals Lee and Grant created and signed the terms of surrender for the Civil War.

Richmond National Cemetery. Photo by Bill Crabtree, Jr.

Richmond National Cemetery. Photo by Bill Crabtree, Jr.

There are 15 national cemeteries in Virginia. Visit one and speak a simple thanks to those who paid the price for the freedom you enjoy.

>>  Memorial Day Events  <<

LOVE is at the heart of every Virginia vacation. Virginia is for Lovers.
Request your free Virginia Travel Guide.



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