Happy New Year! Plan now to experience the new things Virginia has to offer in 2013, as well as be a part of significant milestones for key events.
Salamander Resort & Spa makes its much-anticipated debut this summer. Set on 340 acres near Middleburg, the resort will boast 168 luxury rooms and suites, 23,000-square-foot spa, full-service equestrian center, fine dining and 12,000 square feet of conference and event facilities.
Michelangelo Sacred and Profane, the touring exhibit of drawings of the master artist and architect, makes its only American stop at The College of William and Mary’s Muscarelle Museum of Art from February 9th to April 13th, 2013. The exhibit includes 26 original drawings preserved in the family home in Italy, some of which have never before been seen in the U.S.
Center in the Square, the home for Mill Mountain Theater, the Science Museum of Western Virginia, the Harrison Museum of African American Culture and the History Museum & Historical Society of Western Virginia, will re-emerge after a $27 million do-over with refurbished exterior and redesigned interior, a 5,500-gallon living coral reef aquarium and a green rooftop facility.
70th Waterford Homes Tour and Crafts Fair: The oldest juried crafts fair in Virginia celebrates 70 years in 2013. Talented crafters present their wares and visitors may also enjoy tours of historic homes, music and historical interpreters. The entire village of Waterford is a National Historic District.
Old Hill Cider is just one of a bushel of hard cideries recently opened or soon-to-open in Virginia in 2013. More than a dozen cideries can be found in settings from bucolic back roads to urban cityscapes. In Colonial times apple cider was allowed to turn “hard” in order to preserve it through winter. Today that tradition yields delicious ciders from Virginia’s bountiful annual apple crop.
The Museum of the Shenandoah Valley in Winchester will host an exhibit in 2013 honoring one of its favorite citizens, Patsy Cline. Becoming Patsy Cline will focus on the early years of the legendary country singer and first female member of the Country Music Hall of Fame and will run from August 2013 through February 2014. The plane crash that took her life occurred 50 years ago in March. She is buried in Winchester’s Shenandoah Memorial Park and her home is now open as a museum.
80th Historic Garden Week in Virginia: “America’s Largest Open House” celebrates 80 years in 2013 with tours of more than 250 of Virginia’s finest historic homes and gardens.
The President’s Photographer: Fifty Years Inside the Oval Office, a National Geographic exhibition featuring dozens of rarely seen images of recent U.S. presidents through the eyes of their official photographers, will be on display at the Virginia Historical Society from March 4 – July 8, 2013. Featuring images taken in tense times and on joyous occasions, the exhibit explores the role of the president’s photographer, documenting for history every possible aspect of presidency.
Craft breweries are springing up all around Virginia. Among the hot new places offering cold brews are Center of the Universe Brewing Company in Hanover, Beer Hound Brewery in Ruckersville, Charlottesville’s Champion Brewing Company, Lickinghole Creek Craft Brewery of Goochland and Three Brothers Brewing of Harrisonburg.
Kings Dominion will open the world’s largest Peanuts-themed children’s area Spring 2013 with its new Planet Snoopy. The 14-acre area will feature 12 new or re-themed attractions including a monorail, two live shows and an open-air marketplace.
Virginia’s Executive Mansion turns 200: Built during the War of 1812, Virginia’s Executive Mansion has set the tone for the hospitality for which Virginia is famous. The Marquis de Lafayette, Winston Churchill and Queen Elizabeth II have all been guests in America’s oldest governor’s residence still used for its original purpose. Special tours and events will mark the 200th birthday of this historic house which was also used as a film location for Steven Spielberg’s movie LINCOLN.
The LINCOLN Movie Trail is based on Steven Spielberg’s blockbuster movie filmed entirely in the Richmond/Petersburg area. The Trail pinpoints film locations as well as sites favored and frequented by stars such as Daniel Day-Lewis, Sally Field, Tommy Lee Jones and the producer/director himself. The real Abraham Lincoln visited both Richmond and Petersburg in the closing days of the Civil War.
50th Season Trail of the Lonesome Pine: When the curtain first came up on what is now Virginia’s official Outdoor Drama it is doubtful anyone imagined a run going on 50 years. The play shows no signs of slowing down as audiences continue to flock to the June Tolliver Amphitheater in downtown Big Stone Gap to experience a story of turn-of-the-century romance in the Appalachian Mountains.
Wine in Virginia continues to make headlines and win coveted national and world ribbons. New wineries such as The Winery at Bull Run join established vineyards totaling now more than 220 in all. Look for new experiences at Virginia wineries as well including oyster pairings, personal blendings, workshops, overnight stays, special events and festivals.