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    Do you recognize one of the oldest tourist destinations in the US? This beauty has been included on several "Seven Natural Wonders of the World" lists, was surveyed by George Washington in 1750 and was once owned by Thomas Jefferson as a personal retreat. While you're visiting don't forget to swing by the legendary Foamhenge, explore the Natural Bridge Caverns and get your photo taken with a baby tiger at the Natural Bridge Zoo. Photo credit: @takeiteasybee #loveva #virginia #vaoutdoors #naturalwonder #naturalbridge #howisummer #vatravel #virginiaisforlovers #photooftheday #fatherson
    #HappyBirthday to #NASA, launched 51 years ago in 1958. This is an awesome shot of the Minotaur V launch from #WallopsIsland, #Virginia last September by @_miancab. If you're interested in watching their next #launch, the Antares is scheduled for October of this year (date TBD). You can view from bleachers or the rooftop observation deck at the Wallops Island Flight Facility Visitor Center OR you can watch from Chincoteague or the Assateague Island beach. #rocket #loveva #space #stars #photooftheday #blastoff @nasa
    Is everyone excited for #Virginia #CraftBeer Month next month? It's time to put your game face on and visit a new local #brewery or get adventuresome on a #VA #beer trail. Find your way at and tag your photos with #vacraftbeermonth! This is glass of @ardentcraftales' #IPA, found on tap in Richmond. #rva #vabeer #drinklocal #locavore #ardentcraftales
    Spend a day at Buckroe #Beach in Hampton, #Virginia. You'll find a popular cobia fishing #pier and kayak, paddleboat, chair and umbrella rentals. If you time your visit right, you'll even get to hear some live music in the beachside pavilion. Photo props to @jennaevelyndill. Post your #VA photos with #LoveVA for a chance to be featured here! #repost #ocean #howisummer #sand #photooftheday
  • Archive for the ‘Civil War’ Category

    “Lincoln” Poster Revealed

    by Casey | Posted on August 22nd, 2012

    The official poster for the movie “Lincoln” was released today. This movie was filmed in Virginia.

    LincolnSteven Spielberg directs two-time Academy Award® winner Daniel Day-Lewis in “Lincoln,” a revealing drama that focuses on the 16th President’s tumultuous final months in office. In a nation divided by war and the strong winds of change, Lincoln pursues a course of action designed to end the war, unite the country and abolish slavery. With the moral courage and fierce determination to succeed, his choices during this critical moment will change the fate of generations to come.

    Starring Daniel Day-Lewis, Sally Field, David Strathaim, Joseph Gordon-Levitt, James Spader, Hal Holbrook and Tommy Lee Jones, “Lincoln” is produced by Steven Spielberg and Kathleen Kennedy, with a screenplay by Tony Kushner, based in part on the book “Team of Rivals: The Political Genius of Abraham Lincoln” by Doris Kearns Goodwin. The DreamWorks Pictures/Twentieth Century Fox film, in association with Participant Media, releases in U.S. theaters exclusive on November 9, 2012, with expansion on November 16, 2012.

    Learn more about movies filmed in Virginia at

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

    Civil War, Filmed in Virginia, History | 1 Comment

    Commemorating Second Manassas

    by Casey | Posted on August 20th, 2012

    Virginia is home to more Civil War sites than any other state, nearly 800 in total. Experience a bit of that history up close and personal this weekend as the 150th Anniversary of the Second Battle of Manassas is commemorated at the Manassas National Battlefield Park.

    Manassas National Battlefield Park

    Manassas National Battlefield Park

    According to the National Park Service, “The campaign and battle of Second Manassas demonstrated the impact of an expanding war, both in terms of the size of the armies that fought here and in the numbers of casualties resulting from the battle. The campaign showed the effects of a widening Union war effort, resulting in increasing impacts upon civilians and consideration of emancipation as a war aim. The campaign also marked the rise of Robert E. Lee as a battlefield commander: his success at Second Manassas opened the opportunity to the Confederate army to carry the war into the North, leading directly to the Maryland Campaign and the Battle of Antietam.”

    Ways to experience the history of the Battle of Second Manassas:

    • August 25
    • August 26
      • Thoroughfare Gap: A Walking Tour. Led by historian Jim Burgess. 90 minutes. Chapman (Beverly) Mill. 3 p.m.
      • Manassas Junction and Its Railroads: From Union Lifeline to Confederate Prize. One hour talk. Manassas Museum – 9101 Prince William Street, Manassas. 7 p.m.
      • Living History and Weapons Demonstration. Artillery firing at 11 a.m. and 1 p.m. Cavalry demonstrations at 11:30 a.m. and 12:30 pm. Infantry firing at 12 and 2 p.m. Brawner Farm.
    • August 28
      • Tour: Brawner Farm – The Battle Begins. Guided walking tour with a park historian, tracing the routes of the opposing battle lines at the beginning of the Second Battle of Manassas. Brawner Farm Interpreter Center. 7 p.m.
    • August 29
      • Tour: Standoff at the Railroad. Guided walking tour with a park historian. Focuses on the morning fight near Sudley Church on August 29, 1862. Sudley Church (Tour Stop 5). 10 a.m.
      • Tour: Breakthrough at the Railroad. Guided walking tour with a park historian. Highlights the attacks on the Confederates along the Unfinished Railroad. Tour Stop 6. 90 minutes. 2 p.m.
      • Tour: Battling for the Rocky Knoll. Guided walking tour with a park historian. Uncovers the struggle of the afternoon battle behind the Unfinished Railroad. Sudley Church (Tour Stop 5). 4 p.m.
      • Tour: Clash at Groverton Crossroads. Guided walking tour with a park historian. See what dusk at Groverton might have looked like as you hear about the August 29, 1862 evening fight. Tour Stop 9. 7 p.m.
    • August 30
      • Tour: Robinson Farm: Behind Union Lines. Guided walking tour with a park historian. Learn what the battle experience was like for free African-American James Robinson and his family. Visitor Center. 60 minutes. 11 a.m.
      • Tour: Slaughter at Deep Cut. Guided walking tour with a park historian. The largest Union assault by the troops under Fitz John Porter will be detailed. Tour Stop 7. 90 minutes. 2 p.m.
      • Tour: Counterattack at Chinn Ridge. Guided walking tour with a park historian. The Confederates battle back. New York Monuments (Tour Stop 9). 90 minutes. 4 p.m.
      • Tour: Battling Until Sunset: The Struggle for Henry Hill. Guided walking tour with a park historian. The final phase of Manassas-Sudley Road and on Henry Hill. Visitor Center. 90 minutes. 7 p.m.
    • August 31
      • Tour: On the Battle Lines: Sudley Church at Second Manassas. Guided walking tour with a park historian along the Unfinished Railroad to key battle sites and Sudley Church. Hear how the battle impacted the community. Vespers service at Sudley Church following the tour, including period music and guest speaker. Sudley Church (Tour Stop 5). 90 minutes. 6 p.m.
    • September 1
      • Second Manassas Lecture Series. Visitor Center Auditorium.
        • 11 a.m. – Alan Gaff, author of Brave Men’s Tears
        • 1 p.m. – Stephen Potter, editor of Archaeological Perspectives on the American Civil War
        • 3 p.m. – John Hennessy, author  of Return to Bull Run: The Campaign and Battle of Second Manassas
        • 7 p.m. – James I. Robertson, Sr. – author of Stonewall Jackson: The Man, the Soldier, The Legend
      • Living History and Weapons Demonstration. Artillery firing at 11 a.m. and 1 p.m. Cavalry demonstrations at 11:30 a.m. and 12:30 pm. Infantry firing at 12 and 2 p.m. Brawner Farm (Tour Stop 1).
    • September 2
      • Second Manassas Lecture Series. Visitor Center Auditorium.
        • 11 a.m. – John Matsui, author of the forthcoming book The First Republican Army
        • 1 p.m. – Scott C. Patchan, author of Second Manassas: Longstreet’s Attack and the Struggle for Chinn Ridge
      • Living History and Weapons Demonstration. Artillery firing at 11 a.m. and 1 p.m. Cavalry demonstrations at 11:30 a.m. and 12:30 pm. Infantry firing at 12 and 2 p.m. Brawner Farm (Tour Stop 1).

    Manassas National Battlefield Park is located at 6511 Sudley Road in Manassas, Virginia.

    Manassas National Battlefield Park

    Manassas National Battlefield Park

    Know Before You Go:

    • Park Map
    • Admission is $3 per person (16 and older) for three days’ entry to Manassas National Battlefield Park.
    • Henry Hill Visitor Center is open daily from 8:30 a.m. to 5 p.m., with the exception of special events as mentioned above.
    • “Manassas: End of Innocence” is a 45-minute film that covers both the First and Second Battles of Manassas. Shown on the hour beginning at 9 a.m. in the Henry Hill Visitor Center.
    • Park Rules: No climbing on monuments or cannons * Pets must be leashed * Alcohol and metal detectors are prohibited * Park in designated areas only * Bicycles are prohibited on trails

    Visit the Civil War 150 HistoryMobile August 24-26 at the Manassas Visitor Center to see the Civil War from a variety of points of view – young and old, enslaved and free, soldiers and civilians. To explore real lives of the Civil War online, visit - unexpected stories of real people who did extraordinary things.

    LOVE is at the heart of every Virginia vacation. Virginia is for Lovers.
    Request a free Virginia Travel Guide.
    Learn more about the Civil War in Virginia.

    Civil War, Events, History | Comments Off

    Mid-Summer Travel Savings

    by Dave | Posted on July 12th, 2012

    It’s summer and great vacation deals for you and your family are at your fingertips here in Virginia. To make planning a getaway easy, we’ve pulled together some of the best and most exciting family vacation savings here for you, with many more found on So what are you waiting for? Book a package deal and come see why we say love is at the heart of every Virginia vacation.

    Kids at Virginia Beach

    Kids playing at Assateague Island National Seashore

    • Unplug the Kids in Shenandoah National Park: Enjoy two nights in the park at Skyland Resort or Big Meadows Lodge with breakfast and dinner included for the kids; a fun filled Scavenger Hike Adventure book and admission to Luray Caverns. Starting at $359 Details
    • Williamsburg Flex Vacation: Take a family getaway with a whole lot of fun and flexibility. Experience all the adventure Williamsburg and the Historic Triangle have to offer: three living- history museums, two national park sites, and one amusement park. 3 Days / 2 Nights from $514 Details
    • 3 Night Summer Getaway in Virginia Beach: Save up to 15% Looking to take a mini-vacation? Come check out the newly renovated Holiday Inn & Suites, North Beach. Enjoy a 3 night stay in our two room suites.
    • The Homestead Experience Package: The Homestead invites guests to plunge into the family fun with complete abandon at a great nightly rate. You choose the activities to include in the package – all for one price! From $275 Details
    • Dolphin Discovery Package: 2 nights oceanfront accommodations Dolphin Watching boat excursion Admission to Virginia Aquarium, IMAX and Special Family Pack Welcome Gift. Starting at $124
    • August “beat the heat” Villa mountain escape!: Come on down to Meadow Villas in the beautiful Allegheny mountains. Take the vacation you want and enjoy 30% off ANY available villa when you mention this August “beat the heat ” special from
    • Celebrating Summer Package: Summer is always special at Keswick Hall. Package includes: Superior room, $50 credit to be used anywhere in the resort and parking. Details
    • A Natural Bridge Summer Family Escape: Book the Summer Family Escape Package to put the natural wonder at your front door & get a great deal on a room. Details
    • Busch Gardens Package: Great Deal! 1 night’s accommodations in a one king or two double-bed room 2 single day admission tickets to Busch Gardens Williamsburg. Details
    • Hilton Garden Inn Richmond Downtown Civil War Package: Includes breakfast for two, two tickets to Museum of Confederacy, two tickets for tour of Confederate White House and more. From $151.90
    • Summer Couple’s Getaway: Plan a “Summer” getaway to Shadow Mountain Escape! Enjoy a deluxe Timberframe cabin – celebrate Romance with your special someone! From $370. Details
    • “Concert Under the Stars” Wolf Trap Picnic Package: Enjoy great food and drinks while being swept away by world-class music and entertainment underneath clear, crisp skies. From $139 Details

    For more great travel package and discount offers, visit

    Beaches, Civil War, Deals & Discounts, Travel Ideas | 2 Comments

    Happy 200th, John Jasper

    by Casey | Posted on July 2nd, 2012

    Amid the fireworks and celebrations of Independence Day, might we remember (or come to know) a leader from our past who would be 200 years old this July 4th?

    John Jasper

    John Jasper

    John Jasper was born into slavery in Fluvanna County on July 4, 1812 as the youngest of 24 children. On July 4, 1839 at the age of 25, Jasper underwent a religious transformation on the steps of Richmond’s Capitol Square. It was a day that changed his life, as he would spend the next 25 years preaching sermons at slave funerals.

    At the age of 50 Jasper was emancipated. He was a brick cleaner, repairing the Civil War-burned city of Richmond, and still serving at a high demand as a slave funeral pastor.

    On September 3, 1867, John Jasper and ten friends held services in an abandoned stable on Brown’s Island in Richmond, founding the Sixth Mount Zion Baptist Church, a strong community of faith that is still present today. It was at the age of 66 (1878) that John Jasper reached a peak in his career, delivering “De Sun Do Move” to the Virginia General Assembly. The sermon was so well received, Jasper was requested to deliver it more than 250 times.

    In addition, Reverend John Jasper was one of only a few black ministers in Richmond who were authorized by the United States Freedmen’s Bureau to legalize ex-slave marriages, which were not legally recognized prior to early 1866* in Virginia.

    John Jasper died on March 30, 1901. His death was the noted headline of the day, overshadowing the burning of the famed Jefferson Hotel.

    Learn more about John Jasper and other influential people of his time at

    * National Archives. Spring 2005, Vol. 37, No. 1

    Civil War, History | Comments Off

    Big Battles Reenacted

    by Casey | Posted on May 17th, 2012

    Virginia is home to more Civil War sites than any other state, nearly 800 in total. History lovers come to Virginia to explore Civil War sites that stretch from the first major battles to the war’s end at Appomattox, and to explore the stories of ordinary people who did extraordinary things during the war.

    Battle of New Market

    Battle of New Market

    To get as-near a Civil War experience as possible, attend a battle reenactment. It just so happens that several major reenactments are this weekend.

    In Spotsylvania this weekend, your family can tour 1860s home life interpretive areas, listen to period music performed by the 2nd South Carolina String Band, gain knowledge of the battle and Virginia’s role from historians, buy Civil War souvenirs, and witness a reenactment of the Battle of Spotsylvania Court House, the second major battle of General Ulysses S. Grant’s 1864 Overland Campaign. It’s Saturday and Sunday, May 19 and 20 at Spotsylvania Courthouse Village. $10/Adult; ages 15 and under are free.

    Battle of Fort Pocahontas

    One major battle that is reenacted annually is the Battle of New Market in the Shenandoah Valley. Also held this Saturday and Sunday, this event places an emphasis on the importance of the corps of cadets from Virginia Military Institute in Lexington. The 300-acre battlefield comes to life again as nearly 2,000 reenactors play out the scenes on this 148th anniversary. In addition to the impressive battle scenarios, living history encampments educate attendees. Be sure to visit the Virginia Museum of the Civil War and see the Emmy award-winning “Field of Lost Shoes.” $10 for ages 10 and up; ages 9 and under are free.

    For a unique point of view of the Civil War, attend the reenactment of the Battle at Fort Pocahontas in Charles City this weekend.  The United States Colored Troops built the earth fort as protection from Major Fitzhugh Lee’s approaching forces. The USCT were victorious in their May 24, 1864 stand. See this battle reenacted both Saturday and Sunday, May 19 and 20.

    See other upcoming battle reenactments at or signature Sesquicentennial of the American Civil War and Emancipation events at

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


    Civil War, History | Comments Off