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    Road trippers and warriors may recognize the Hampton Roads #Bridge Tunnel at sunset, though it looks different when you're not behind the wheel of a car. Beautiful shot by @slayerlovnhippy! Don't forget to tag your #Virginia photos with #LoveVA for a chance to be featured here. #repost #dusk #photooftheday #bridgetunnel #vatravel #moon #hamptonroads
    Picking #blueberries at Mount Olympus Farm in Ruther Glen. If you visit soon, you'll be able to pick your own blueberries (end of season) AND blackberries (beginning of season). Pull out those homemade #pie and #muffin recipes and get cookin'! Tag your #Virginia photos with #LoveVA for a chance to be featured here. #eatlocal #pickyourown #blueberry #summer #vatravel #locavore #vafood
    Even your best friend is bound to enjoy the views from the Blue Ridge Parkway! Here's Aspen and @samanthabrookephoto taking advantage of the #DogDays of #summer. #repost #loveva #virginia #vaoutdoors #photooftheday #BlueRidgeParkway #vatravel #goldenretriever
    #Virginia #oyster shuckin' at #Merroir with Rappahannock River Oysters. If you haven't visited this sea-to-table restaurant in Topping, VA, they've got another location in Richmond: Rappahannock #Restaurant. #loveva #vafood #eatlocal #locavore #rva #vaoyster
  • Posts Tagged ‘southern virginia’

    5 Out of the Way Places to Explore in Central and Southern Virginia

    by Casey | Posted on February 11th, 2014

    Get off the beaten path to see the lesser-known attractions from Richmond to Danville and Bedford and Petersburg. You’ll be delightfully surprised to find these “hidden” gems!

    Shug the Grizzly Bear at Bear Path Acres

    Shug the Grizzly Bear at Bear Path Acres

    1. Bear Path Acres in Franklin is a non-profit animal sanctuary and the only place in Virginia where you’ll see a grizzly bear up close and personal (aside from your own mountain run-in). Not exotic enough for you? Leonard the Black Leopard is a beautiful, unexpected gentleman who also calls Bear Path home.  This animal education center is open March through November, weather permitting. $10 per adult; $5 per child age 4 to 12. Group rates available.

    2. Visit the 100-acre Cheroenhaka (Nottoway) Indian Territory in Courtland to see Cattashowrock Town, a replica of the Native Palisade Fort/Village that William Byrd I of Westover documented during his visit in 1728. The Cheroenhaka (“People at the Fork of the Stream”) were the first to make contact with the English settlers in 1607/1608 in what is now Nottoway County, and are a state recognized Iroquoian Speaking Tribe. Walk the tribal interpretive trails, powwow grounds, and see the native sweat lodge. Cattashowrock Town is open Fridays and Saturdays from March 20 through November 15, 2014, 10 a.m. to 4 p.m.

    Annual Events:

    • July 26, 2014 – Cattashowrock Town “Green Corn Dance” Powwow
    • November 15 – Cheroenhaka (Nottoway) Indian Inter-Tribal Fall Festival

    3. It’s a simple thing, really, but will bring much joy to those who haven’t experienced it. The last hand-poled ferry in the United States operates Saturdays and Sundays, April through October in Scottsville. It’s the Hatton Ferry and it crosses the James River south of Charlottesville every Saturday and Sunday, so long as water levels permit. Free to cross, but donations are encouraged. See the video below!

    4. Boys big and small, young and old will fall in love with the American Armoured Foundation, Inc. Tank Museum in Danville. It’s the most extensive collection of tank and cavalry artifacts in the world with more than 115 tanks and artillery pieces, 15o mid-size weapons, and more than 1,800 uniforms, headgear, pins, patches, and more. The collection dates from 1509 to present day with all nations represented. Open Saturdays only through March, and then Wednesdays through Saturdays April through December. $12 per adult and $10 for ages 5 to 12.

    MacCallum More Museum and Gardens

    MacCallum More Museum and Gardens

    5. MacCallum More Museum and Gardens in Chase City is listed on both the Virginia Landmark Registry and National Historic Register. Statues and plaques from around the world are found within the gardens – the rose garden, pink garden, herb & wildflower garden, joy garden, and a future children’s garden. The museum is home to five permanent exhibits including the Arthur Robertson Arrowhead Collection, the largest public display of arrowheads in the United States. Pieces date from the Archaic to Woodland Period; the collection is approximately 50,000 pieces strong.

    Virginia is for Lovers.
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    48 Hour Fall Getaways in Virginia, Part 4 of 8

    by Casey | Posted on September 12th, 2013

    The great outdoors are calling your name. You must climb, paddle, run, or ride. But where? Enter the beautiful season of fall where the mercury slowly dips to moderate numbers and the shorter days are loaded with excitement.

    Leaf Peeping in Lynchburg

    Lynchburg is serving up fantastic outdoor recreation and you really don’t want to miss out on it.

    Start with the Liberty Mountain Trail System. It’s more than 65 miles zig-zagging across 5,000 acres and up to more than 1,360 feet.

    Next up could be a lazy kayak trip with James River Float Company. After all that strenuous mountain work, this might be the perfect attraction.

    Since you’ve gotten up close and personal with the foliage on the trail and admired its brilliance from the water, where else to see it but from the air? Call up Precision Windsports, Inc. They’ll get you up and flying in a light sport aircraft for a unique leaf-peeping vantage point.

    Stay:
    Craddock Terry Hotel (Stay 2 nights; get 3rd 50% off!)
    Federal Crest Inn B&B
    Kirkley Hotel

    Eat:
    Main Street Eatery
    Shoemakers Fine Dining
    The Crown

    Do:
    Rise Up Climbing
    Jefferson Street Brewery
    Upcoming Events

    New Adventures at Mountain Lake

    This beautiful mountain reprieve tucked away in Giles County is the 1986 filming location for the incredible (am I biased?) Dirty Dancing featuring Patrick Swayze and Jennifer Grey. While the urge to stay at “Kellerman’s” is a persistent annual draw, Mountain Lake Lodge & Conservancy has been revamped for a new generation of family fun.

    You should know …

    • 2,600 acres with 22 miles of hiking and mountain biking trails
    • Rafting, canoeing, kayaking and fishing on-site
    • A new aerial and zip line adventure course, geocaching, and archery lessons are just some of the outdoor offerings
    • Dining on site at Harvest or Stony Creek Tavern
    • Stay on site in either the Main Stone Lodge, Chestnut Lodge, the Front Lawn Cottages & Historic Rustic Cabins, or in a Blueberry Ridge Mountain Home.

    Also Nearby:
    Blackberry Morning Retreat
    Walker Creek Retreat
    Inn at Riverbend (Quick! Stay 2 midweek nights; get 3rd 50% off!)
    Cascades National Recreation Trail

    Saddle Up in Southern Virginia

    Shangrila Guest Ranch

    Shangrila Guest Ranch

    South Boston is your destination and horseback riding at Shangrila Guest Ranch is your pleasure for these 48 hours. An all-inclusive ranch, you’ll be more than comfortable in their log cabin, old home place or packhouse. If you’d rather try another accommodation, they’ll still let you saddle up with their beautiful horses. Ride, regardless of experience, for an hour or all day …  just make an appointment!

    Explore South Boston and Halifax, but be sure to try the barbecue at Smokin’ Jakes. That definitely has to be on your list.

    Also Nearby:
    Berry Hill Resort
    Oak Grove Plantation B&B
    The Prizery
    Bob Cage Sculpture Farm

    Mountain Explorations in Southwest Virginia

    The Blue Ridge Parkway is pure outdoor recreation. Start anywhere you like and you’re golden. For this purpose, let’s shoot down near Meadows of Dan and make a plan.

    Blue Ridge Tree Climbing

    Blue Ridge Tree Climbing

    Pick things up with Blue Ridge Tree Climbing, LLC. Instructor Bob Wray is inspiring, stating, “If you cannot remember the meaning of childhood magic, or do remember and want to get it back, then I suggest you simply climb a tree again.”

    Find rest in a cozy little cabin nestled among Christmas trees at River Walk Cabins, or delight in the views from Woodberry Inn, where there’s a restaurant on site.

    There are plenty of trails nearby, including Sweet Mountain Laurel Loop, Rock Castle Gorge National Recreational Trail, and the entirety of the Buffalo Mountain Natural Area Preserve.

    Also Nearby:
    Mabry Mill and Restaurant
    Saddle Up Farm
    Chateau Morrisette Winery and Restaurant

    Find more ways to spend 48 hours this fall in Virginia:

    LOVE is at the heart of every Virginia vacation. Virginia is for Lovers.
    Sign up to receive our weekly Fall Foliage Report.*

    *Fall Foliage Reports will begin on or about September 25.

     



    48 Hours, Destinations, Fall in Virginia, Outdoors | Comments Off

    Warm Up with Brunswick Stew

    by Casey | Posted on October 10th, 2012

    Brunswick stew is a culinary tradition that dates back to 1828 on Virginia’s Nottaway River where Dr. Creed Haskins’ cook prepared a pot for a hunting party, utilizing fresh ingredients nearby … squirrel.

    Brunswick Stew

    Brunswick Stew

    The stew is historically made in huge cast iron pots over an open flame in quantities large enough to feed entire communities. Rest assured, however, that the meat base nowadays is chicken rather than squirrel.

    For a taste of authentic Virginia tradition, make your way to one of these upcoming Brunswick Stew festivals. There will be more than enough to quiet your hunger on site as well as to take home for later.

    • October 13: Taste of Brunswick Festival & Cook-Off in Alberta, Brunswick County – This is the World Championship Brunswick Stew Cook-Off and as a taster, it’s you who truly reaps the reward. Pair this feast with a genuine festival atmosphere of arts and crafts, wagon rides, Bluegrass and antique tractors, and it’s a classic fall day in Virginia.girl eating brunswick stew
      • Stay the night at Alberta B&B! The innkeepers are including two quarts of Brunswick stew for you to take home after the festival. $300 for a two-night stay.
    • October 20: 3rd Annual Brunswick Stew and Classic Car Show in Gladys – Enjoy your stew here to benefit the local volunteer fire department. The kids will love seeing Smokey the Bear and Sparky the Fire Dog, as well as all of the emergency response vehicles.
    • October 27: Brunswick Stew Day in Nokesville – Brunswick stew will be cooked over an open flame and it’s “all you can eat” for as long as you’re there. One meal enough? Take home a quart and freeze it for later.
    LOVE is at the heart of every Virginia vacation. Virginia is for Lovers.
    Request your free Travel Guide and Scenic Roads Map.



    Events, Fall in Virginia, Family, Festivals, Food | Comments Off

    Art? We have trails for that.

    by Casey | Posted on April 30th, 2012

    If you’re on the hunt for handmade treasures why not throw in a scenic drive and make a weekend of it? Virginia’s artisan trails are immense. Each trail highlights Virginia’s beauty captured in virtually any medium of your choice, as well as right in front of your eyes.

    Heartwood: Southwest Virginia's Artisan Gateway

    Heartwood: Southwest Virginia's Artisan Gateway

    Southwest Virginia’s Artisan Network is known as ‘Round the Mountain. The network claims 19 counties and four cities’ worth of studios, galleries, vineyards, and more. It’s important to note that The Crooked Road: Virginia’s Heritage Music Trail intersects and may, in fact, run the same course occasionally as the ‘Round the Mountain trail network, so lend an ear while you treat your eyes.

    To make the ‘Round the Mountain network easier to navigate, the system is broken up into smaller trails.

    From the west and bordering Kentucky and Tennessee is the Wilderness Road Artisan Trail encompassing Lee and Scott Counties. North of that are the Lonesome Pine (Wise County) and  Rivers to Ridges (Dickenson and Buchanan Counties) artisan trails. Creeping west toward the Clinch River and named for it is the Clinch River Artisan Trail of Tazewell and Russell Counties.

    Marty Dunn, an artisan at Cave Arts in Abingdon, weaves a basket. Photo by CameronDavidson@CameronDavidson.com.

    Marty Dunn, an artisan at Cave Arts in Abingdon, weaves a basket. Photo by CameronDavidson @CameronDavidson.com.

    The Interstate 81 corridor is a busy one. Hop off the rat race and see these trails with much to offer. In Montgomery County (Blacksburg) is the Montgomery County Artisan Trail, but if you venture just west you’ll also encounter the artisans of the Giles Art & Adventure Trail. Moving south along I81 is the New River Artisan Trail in Pulaski, Mountain Crossroads in Bland County and Wytheville, Smyth County Artisan Trail in Saltville, and Countryside Artisan Trail in Abingdon, Damascus, and Bristol. While you’re in Abingdon, check out Heartwood: Southwest Virginia’s Artisan Gateway. In reality, it’s a great place to kick off the whole adventure!

    If you’re already off the beaten path and perhaps traversing the captivating Blue Ridge Parkway, you’ll find artisans all around you. Beginning in Franklin County around Rocky Mount, you’ll be in the middle of the White Lightning Artisan Trail (yes, THAT kind of white lightning).

    As you move south into the front-porch jam town of Floyd, you’ll also be in the midst of great art on the Floyd County Trail. Harmony Trail goes into Carroll County and the Hillsville area. Southwest is the Woven Mountains and River Bends Trail of Grayson County along the North Carolina border. Back to the east is the last trail of the network – Hidden Treasures - in Stuart and Patrick County.

    As if those trails aren’t enough, the rest of Virginia boasts some art, too. Venture the Discover the Arts Trail in Hampton Roads. It highlights 35 visual arts and 16 performing arts venues around the Historic Triangle.

    In Nelson and Albemarle Counties you’ll find the Monticello Artisan Trail. With the Blue Ridge Mountains as a backdrop to agriculture and history, the arts along this trail will fulfill a wide array of tastes.

    To  the west and spanning Staunton, August and Waynesboro is The HeART and Soil of the Shenandoah Valley. A world-class theatre in the American Shakespeare Center’s Blackfriars Playhouse gives this particular trail a little oomph.

    Lastly, the Western Highlands Artisan Trail includes Alleghany, Bath, Craig, and Highland Counties. From The Homestead to beautiful Humpback Bridge and famous maple syrup, this trail has tremendous scenic value in addition to the handmade arts.

    Visit Virginia.org/ArtisanTrails to download trail brochures and plan your trip. LOVE is at the heart of every Virginia vacation.



    Arts, Virginia Destinations | Comments Off

    Gary Sinise Concert Will Honor Virginia Marine

    by Casey | Posted on March 21st, 2012

    Gary Sinise and The Lt. Dan Band

    Gary Sinise and The Lt. Dan Band

    Award-winning actor and humanitarian Gary Sinise, best known for his portrayal of Lt. Dan in “Forrest Gump,” is coming to Martinsville next Saturday, March 31, with  The Lt. Dan Band to play a concert at Martinsville High School in honor of Cpl. J.B. Kerns, USMC of Ararat, Virginia.  The concert starts at 7 p.m.

    100% of ticket sales from the show will go toward funding a specially-equipped smart home for Kerns, who lost both legs and his right arm last April in Afghanistan. Kerns was the victim of an improvised explosive device (IED). 

    General admission to the concert is $25. A limited number of VIP tickets are available at $75 which include a ticket to the Goody’s Fast Relief 500 NASCAR Sprint Cup race and a Sunday morning meet-and-greet with Sinise at Martinsville Speedway.

    Cpl. J. B. Kerns in Afghanistan

    Cpl. J. B. Kerns in Afghanistan

    Tickets may be purchased online at PiedmontArts.org or by calling 276.632.3221.

    Can’t make it to Martinsville for the concert but want to help Cpl. Kerns? Buy a ticket online and note in the comments box, “Donate to a Veteran” and a local veteran will be given the ticket to go in your place! Again, 100% of the proceeds from this event goes to building a special home for Cpl. Kerns.

     

     

     



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