#LOVEstaunton

#LOVEstaunton

Four Quirky Staunton Stays

Break away from the traditional lodging molds of hotels and B&Bs (not that we don’t ADORE ours, of course), and try these fun, surprising, quirky Staunton stays instead. Staunton is home to the American Shakespeare Center’s Blackfriars Playhouse. Such an attraction requires occasional plays on words, don’t you think? Enter “The Bard’s Nest,” an accommodation within walking … Continue reading Four Quirky Staunton Stays

Break away from the traditional lodging molds of hotels and B&Bs (not that we don’t ADORE ours, of course), and try these fun, surprising, quirky Staunton stays instead.

Staunton is home to the American Shakespeare Center’s Blackfriars Playhouse. Such an attraction requires occasional plays on words, don’t you think? Enter “The Bard’s Nest,” an accommodation within walking distance of the Playhouse. If you didn’t know, William Shakespeare was known as “The Bard,” a professional story-teller. Welcome to what he might have enjoyed, were he a 21st century fellow.

The Bard’s Nest is a very cozy, comfortable arrangement for a solo traveler or a couple. Guests should not smoke, bring children or pets, or anticipate wheelchair access, as “the nest” is on the second floor. Natural light and vaulted ceilings make the space quite inviting. Equipped with a refrigerator, stove, and additional comforts of home, you may want to extend your stay.

The Bard’s Nest

The Storefront was literally a store front, and it’s also your next favorite Staunton stay. Affectionately called “a very small hotel,” The Storefront accommodation begins at street level where you’re likely surprised to find a bar right inside the front door. Yes, BYOB and make yourself at home! Climb the stairs to the second floor where a full kitchen and “the most comfortable queen-size bed in town” awaits.

Above Aioli, the best Mediterranean restaurant in Staunton, is Bella Inn, two studio suites with an abundance of natural light flooding in. Suite One features a king bed, full kitchen, spiral staircase to a loft with a daybed and washer and dryer, and comfortable appointments. Suite Two also boasts a king bed and full kitchen, but trades the loft for a private patio with skyline views. You’ll want to think a while before making your suite choice at Bella Inn.

The Villages Penthouse is a vast industrial accommodation with comfortable touches; a fashionable blend of textures. Wide open space divided only by black steel beams and a curtain for bedroom privacy lets light flood the main living areas. Lots of people can rest here and enjoy the rooftop patio views. It’s an amazing place to grill a fresh steak or burgers!

The Lofts at the Villages

Looking for more cozy places to stay in Staunton? See the options!

Free Things for Kids to Do in Staunton

Summer travels, spring break, and impromptu days off here and there often leave parents looking for things to do that won’t break the bank. Ta da! We’ve rounded up a list of free things for kids to do in Staunton and it’s all for you. Pin, Facebook, bookmark, or print this for future reference; we’re … Continue reading Free Things for Kids to Do in Staunton

Summer travels, spring break, and impromptu days off here and there often leave parents looking for things to do that won’t break the bank. Ta da! We’ve rounded up a list of free things for kids to do in Staunton and it’s all for you. Pin, Facebook, bookmark, or print this for future reference; we’re sure you’ll look to it as a resource for a while to come.

Artsy Things

Glow, cad sel, copper ruby.

A post shared by Doug Sheridan (@sunspotsstudios) on

One of the coolest demonstrations you’ll ever see is glassblowing, and you can see it everyday in Staunton at Sunspots Studios! Watch the masters seemingly turn glass into wax as they form big bubbles bound for a life of beauty. 

Outdoorsy Things

Most parks are fun, but have you seen our parks? Here’s what’s waiting …

Gypsy Hill Park is 214 acres and has a skate park (BMX, inline, scooters, and skateboards are welcome), the Gypsy Express Mini Trail (almost free; $1 per person), garden center, numerous ball fields, and of course, playgrounds. Don’t miss Family Nite Flix hosted by Staunton Parks and Recreation – free family-friendly movies at the Gypsy Hill Park Bandstand.

Lake Tams is a 2.5-acre lake that’s stocked for fishing. Bring your pole and valid Virginia fishing license to see what’s biting!

If your kiddos just like to ride their bikes or work to gain their balance on a new pair of skates, you’re in the right place. Constitution Drive meanders through the park is a designated play street, meaning kids have the right to play in the street.

Finally visited the Natural Playground at Montgomery Hill Park. Stayed for hours! 😍

A post shared by Valerie McQueen Crummett (@valerie.m.c) on

Montgomery Hall Park is 148 acres and is home to the long-awaited natural playground, Nature Ridge. Designed for imaginative play, Nature Ridge has a mud kitchen, rock quarry, pirate ship, ball drop, chimes, and an elevated sand pit accessible to children of all abilities. 

Do you have a little explorer on your hands? Feed the sense of adventure and mystery when you geocache in our parks or downtown.
Learn more about the process and fun of geocaching, then locate our area caches to get started.

Fun Things

Arguably, everything we’ve mentioned thus far is fun, but what about fun with toys? Did you know Staunton has a toy store that lets your kids play while you shop? “Don’t touch” is not a phrase you’ll hear at Pufferbellies. Pop in to play at the largest independently owned toy store in the Shenandoah Valley, and you can help your kids build their Christmas wish list while you’re at it!

Have you ever heard of Kids Bowl Free? Our very own Staunton Lanes is a member of the program that allows your children to bowl two free games every day all summer long. The catch is that once your child is registered, he or she may only bowl at the bowling alley initially chosen at the time of registration. If you never bowl but want to, go ahead and choose ours! 

Discover Staunton by Trolley! Although its not free—the cost is 25-cents per rider—hop on and off as you visit area attractions like the Woodrow Wilson Presidential Library & Museum, Gypsy Hill Park and several of Staunton’s historic districts. The Green route runs every 30 minutes from the Visitors Center located at 35 S. New Street. Or explore by foot using the free app, Traipse! Traipse takes you on an adventure that is half historic tour and half scavenger hunt. You can Traipse anytime, with whomever you want, in places like downtown Staunton, Gypsy Hill Park, and the campus of Mary Baldwin University. The app even provides discounts at select local businesses when you complete the challenges at those spots.

Historic Things

If you’re an active duty military family, we have great news! The Woodrow Wilson Presidential Library and Museum is free for you between Memorial Day and Labor Day! Check out the Blue Star Parent Tool Kit for great ideas to get your kids interacting with what they see during the visit.

History buff families with eager-to-learn children tend to appreciate a good walking tour with a knowledgeable guide. Fortunately, the Historic Staunton Foundation offers such tours every Saturday. Join in for free!


Our Visitor Center is located at 35 S. New Street. Come in for a map, directions, or help with reservations.

Free Things for Adults to Do in Staunton

  A post shared by Shenandoah Art Therapy, LLC (@shenandoaharttherapy) on Apr 9, 2017 at 3:15pm PDT Families aren’t the only ones looking for freebies these days. All of us want to save a buck where we can, right? Yes, of course! The good news is there are free things for adults to do in … Continue reading Free Things for Adults to Do in Staunton

Families aren’t the only ones looking for freebies these days. All of us want to save a buck where we can, right? Yes, of course! The good news is there are free things for adults to do in Staunton, which helps you splurge where you want to and be a frugalista when you want to, too.

Artsy Things

If you appreciate the finer things – the arts in many shapes and forms – this is your jackpot to free things to do in Staunton.

1. The Beverley Street Studio School Gallery hosts rotating exhibits, which are open to the public seven days a week. See what’s currently on exhibit.
2. When you find yourself in Staunton during lunch time on a Monday in the summer, DO find the Heifetz Institute musicians for a free concert. The summer series is called Mondays on the Market and the location varies.
3. The Staunton Augusta Arts Center is located in the historic R.R. Smith Center for History and Art. Peruse the galleries Monday through Saturday to check out the rotating exhibits, which change every six weeks. See what’s currently on exhibit.
4. Have you ever seen glass blown? Do so for free at Sunspots Studios. It’s free to watch and demos are offered daily until 4 p.m.

Historic Things

1. The Louis Comfort Tiffany windows at Trinity Episcopal Church are always a draw, and we’re always happy to inform you that you can visit the church for free to see them. Learn more about the windows and plan your visit.
>> Also See: Staunton Architecture: Newtown Historic District 
2. Thornrose Cemetery should probably be one of the places on your list if you didn’t receive a nudge from us or someone else with some knowledge of the property. Thornrose is the final resting place of more than 1,700 Confederate soldiers from five area battlefields. The various statues are worth attention as well.
3. A guided tour of Staunton is offered every Saturday – May through October – for free! Connect with the Historic Staunton Foundation to join in.

Outdoorsy Things

1. Betsy Bell and Mary Gray Wilderness Parks are open to the public from dawn until dusk. Walk the nature trails and appreciate the expansive views of Staunton and the surrounding area. Be sure to bring your camera to capture wildlife!
2. In downtown Staunton is the 214-acre Gypsy Hill Park. Some people love the duck pond, others appreciate the swimming pool. We’re sure our skilled readers will go for the skate park. Bring your inlines, your BMX, or your skateboard to thrill onlookers with your mad tricks. During the summer, we’d expect to see you at the bandstand for free summer concerts as well. Featuring a different genre almost every night of the week, with band concerts by the Stonewall Brigade on Monday; Praise in the Park on Tuesday; Bluegrass in the Park on Wednesday; and Jazz in the Park on Thursday. 
3. Those with a need for some adrenaline will enjoy the mountain biking trails at Montgomery Hall Park. Check out the map to see what the fuss is all about.

Tasty Things

1. Shenandoah Hops offers complimentary tastings every Friday from 6 to 8 p.m. Those tastings could include craft beer, wine, or cider.
2. Another evening tasting option occurs at The Wine Cellar. Sometimes the tastings are on Fridays and sometimes they’re Saturdays. Check the calendar to see what’s being poured.
3. If you enjoy cooking stop by Staunton Olive Oil Company’s tasting room for a cooking demonstration and to try their many varieties of infused and fused olive oils and balsamic vinegars. 


Enjoy your time in downtown Staunton and let us know how we can be of assistance. Our Visitor Center is located at 35 S. New Street. Come in for a map, directions, or help with reservations.

May is the Month for Art Lovers to be in Staunton

Sunny days, festivals, and beautiful art are on tap this month in downtown Staunton. From shopping along Beverley Street to two big Memorial Day weekend festivals, May is the month for art lovers! Little Made; Market | May 13, 10 AM to 4 PM | 15 E. Beverley Street Made; For the People, By the … Continue reading May is the Month for Art Lovers to be in Staunton

Sunny days, festivals, and beautiful art are on tap this month in downtown Staunton. From shopping along Beverley Street to two big Memorial Day weekend festivals, May is the month for art lovers!

Little Made; Market | May 13, 10 AM to 4 PM | 15 E. Beverley Street

Made; For the People, By the People, is a thoughtful curation of re-purposed and handmade items in a sweet downtown Staunton storefront on East Beverley Street. For this inaugural Little Made; Market, 20 or more carefully selected local and regional makers meeting the Made; standard are showcasing and selling their work. Market goers can shop an array of handmade affordable goods. If you’re looking for fine art or on-trend pop culture pieces, you won’t find them here.

 

Art in the Park

Art in the Park | May 27, 10 AM to 5 PM & May 28, Noon to 5 PM | Gypsy Hill Park

Now in its 51st year, Art in the Park is a art shoppers paradise! Local, regional, and even national artists are juried, then invited to converge on Gypsy Hill Park every Memorial Day Weekend. Those perusing their booths are treated to not only beautiful original fine art pieces, but also great music and food, and children’s activities throughout the day. Admission is free.

 

Virginia Hot Glass Festival

 

Virginia Hot Glass Festival
May 27, 9 AM to 6 PM & May 28, 10 AM to 5 PM | Sunspots Studios

Lovers of hot glass or art demos will want to be at Sunspots Studios on Memorial Day weekend. The annual Virginia Hot Glass Festival features two floors of beautiful glass art and two dozen hot glass artisans. Barren Ridge Vineyards pours tastings or wine by the glass, and each artisan has a space to sell their creations. Don’t miss the fire-breathing dragon, the flaming ray gun, or the Virginia Stone Carvers Guild chiseling across the street.  Admission is free.

MORE ART

If you can’t make one of the festivals or are seeking more art while you’re in Staunton, please check out our galleries and maker spaces.

Your Guide to Staunton’s Summer Music Festivals

    A post shared by Red Wing Roots Music Festival (@redwingroots) on Jul 10, 2016 at 11:03am PDT During the summer months, Staunton abounds with the sounds of music! The festival season kicks off with the Heifetz Institute’s Festival of Concerts on June 24 and culminates with the Staunton Music Festival’s 20th Anniversary Season on August 20. Add … Continue reading Your Guide to Staunton’s Summer Music Festivals

 

During the summer months, Staunton abounds with the sounds of music! The festival season kicks off with the Heifetz Institute’s Festival of Concerts on June 24 and culminates with the Staunton Music Festival’s 20th Anniversary Season on August 20. Add the Red Wing Roots Music Festival at Natural Chimneys and we have over 8 weeks of live music to choose from—and happening just about anywhere and everywhere in Staunton. Planning your festival experience will involve some coordination so check out our festival guide with insider tips and must-see performances. 

Heifetz Institute’s Festival of Concerts

June 24-August 4

The Heifetz Institute’s Festival of Concerts kicks off a summer of music making starting with their Opening Concert and Convocation on June 24 and the music doesn’t stop until August 4. The six-week festival consists of over 40 events including daily concerts, outdoor events, “Heifetz Happy Hours” featuring local wine and artisan food, and special performances featuring their world-renowned faculty and guest artists. Read more. 

Fan Favorite: The ever-popular Heifetz Hootenannies happening every Saturday night under the big tent; you never know who might just show up and play!

A Midsummer Night’s Mendelssohn
A Midsummer Night’s Mendelssohn

Must See: A Midsummer Night’s Mendelssohn: A celebration of Felix Mendelssohn’s music at the midpoint of the Institute, with some of his most glittering compositions, including A Midsummer Night’s Dream and the Octet for strings, played by some of the brightest stars in the Heifetz faculty firmament, including Ensemble in Residence the Borromeo String Quartet, cellist Timothy Eddy, and soprano Angel Azzarra. The concert begins at 6, preceded by a 5 pm “Happy Hour” featuring wine from Ox-Eye vineyards and artisan foods from local eateries. 

When & Where:

Friday, July 21:
Happy Hour Reception: 5 pm, Page Terrace
Concert: 6 pm, Francis Auditorium
Mary Baldwin University
$30

Have a Listen:
Check out this video of Heifetz students playing Mendelssohn: 

And violinist Nicholas Kitchen and cellist Yeesun Kimn of the Borromeo Quartet,
the Heifetz Institute’s Ensemble in Residence for summer 2017!  

 

Before You Go:

  • Free performances every Monday; All other concerts range from $7.50 to $50
  • For classical music fans who don’t want to miss a moment of music, 2017 Season Passes are available online and guarantee you a seat at every show.
  • For lodging and to plan your trip to Staunton, click here.

All the Details:

Calendar of Events >

Red Wing Roots music Festival

July 14-17

With the beautiful backdrop of the towering limestone formations, known as The Natural Chimneys, this family-friendly music festival features the best of both worlds: great music in the great outdoors. Spend the weekend listening to the music stylings of The Steel Wheels, Steve Earle and the Dukes, Lake Street Dive, and many more while immersed in outdoor activities including daily hikes, morning yoga, fun runs and more. Set-up camp for the weekend or come for the day—either way you’re guaranteed to have fun!

Must See: Don’t miss the innovative soul-pop band, Lake Street Dive, making headlines and appearances following their 2016 release Side Pony. The whimsical hairstyle—also the name of their album—is illustrative of their fun and funky style.

When & Where:
Friday, July 14 at 9:30 pm
Shenandoah Mountain Stage

Have a Listen

Check out headliner, The Steel Wheels and the track “Scrape Me Off the Ceiling” off their new album, Wild as We Came Here

Fan Favorite:
Singer/songwriter Pokey LaFarge returns to Red Wing Roots Music Festival after a three year hiatus. 

When & Where:
Sunday, July 17 at 6:45 pm
Shenandoah Mountain Stage

Before You Go: 

All the Details:
Complete Line-up >
Tickets >


Staunton Music Festival

Staunton Music Festival
Staunton Music Festival

August 11-20

The Staunton Music Festival celebrates 20 years of music with a 10-day festival. One of the most popular music events of the summer— happening August 11-20—includes multiple performances a day with music ranging from the Middle Ages to commissioned world premieres and taking place throughout historic downtown Staunton in a variety of locations ranging from intimate venues to traditional settings. Read more.

Fan Favorite: Always an audience favorite, the Piano Extravaganza showcases works for one piano, from one to eight hands. As enjoyable to watch as it is to hear. Music by Rachmaninoff, Debussy, Scriabin and many others.

When & Where:
Saturday, August 19 from 12-1 pm
First Presbyterian Church

Must See: Beethoven’s Ninth Symphony for vocal soloists, chorus, and orchestra. The SMF concludes its 20th anniversary season with Beethoven’s last completed symphony, a work that transformed music, rewrote accepted norms of symphonic music, and carried poet Friedrich Schiller’s message of “Ode to Joy” to all future generations. SMF artistic director Carsten Schmidt conducts the SMF Chamber Orchestra, a brilliant period instrument ensemble, along with featured vocal soloists and chamber chorus.

When & Where:
Sunday, August 20 from 3-4:30 pm
Trinity Episcopal Church

Have a Listen: 

 

Before You Go:

  • Free daily concert; All other concerts range from $10-22 (not including college and youth ticket prices)
  • For classical music fans who don’t want to miss a moment of music, 2017 Subscriptions are available with two options: Patron of the Arts Annual Subscription which includes all events in 2017 and the Festival Pack Subscription which includes admission to all performances in the regular August series.
  • For lodging and to plan your trip to Staunton, click here

All the Details:
Calendar of Events >
Tickets >

Mother’s Day: Gift Ideas, Brunch Spots and Shopportunities

Find the perfect gift, take mom shopping or out for a “Momosa,” and brunch. We’ve got you and mom covered this Mother’s Day weekend.  See just a sampling of all the great finds and fun things to do with Mom in downtown Staunton.  gift guide for mom Looking for that perfect gift for Mom? See some … Continue reading Mother’s Day: Gift Ideas, Brunch Spots and Shopportunities

Find the perfect gift, take mom shopping or out for a “Momosa,” and brunch. We’ve got you and mom covered
this Mother’s Day weekend.  See just a sampling of all the great finds and fun things to do with Mom in downtown Staunton. 

gift guide for mom

Looking for that perfect gift for Mom? See some of these unique finds available only in Downtown Staunton. 

For that affordable yet

H.L. Lang Jewelers has Staunton charms that include popular Queen City landmarks like the Gypsy Hill Gazebo, the clock tower, the Marquis Building and of course everyone’s favorite—the flower pot! 

Spoil Mom with luxurious soaps, lotions and all things that smell good from Redwood & Co

Give her the gift of experience with a felting class or pick out a hand-felted scarf, hat or jewelry from Artful Gifts.

Inspire your favorite cook with an infused olive oil, balsamic vinegar—or both from Staunton Olive Oil Company.

 

 

Express your gratitude with a card that says it all from Latitudes Fair Trade

 

 

shopportunities for Mom – Saturday, May 12

Spend the day with Mom shopping in Downtown Staunton. Check out some of these events happening: 

Little Made; Market

East Beverley Street
A Curated Indie Arts & Craft Festival featuring 20 specially selected artists showcasing their handmade works. Click here for more details.

World Fair Trade Day

Downtown Staunton businesses: Latitudes, Harmony Moon, Sacred Circle and Cranberry’s
Celebrate World Fair Trade Day by visiting your favorite fair trade shops in downtown Staunton. Each shop will have a special activity to celebrate the day. Click here for more details.

Shop Staunton First Saturday

Downtown Staunton
Get ready for Mother’s Day with a shopping trip to Downtown Staunton. Look for Daisy Depots at participating stores and pick up a free daisy. Check SDDA’s Facebook page to see all of the special activities planned just for Mom.

 

Mother’s Day Brunch and specials – SUNDAY, May 13

Stonewall Jackson Hotel
From 11 am-2 pm

This Mother’s Day spread includes something for everyone—even picky eaters! Choose from over six stations with everything from salad to smoked salmon, spinach and smoked mozzarella lasagna to roasted beef strip loin and of course dessert! See the full menu.
To make your reservation call: 540-885-4848 or email: reservations@stonewalljacksonhotel.com

Yelping Dog
12 pm to 6 pm

Featuring refreshing cocktails like mimosas with mango, peach or orange juices and Sunday Sangria made with a blend of Italian Pinot Noir with fresh fruit. Known for their grilled cheese, try this Mother’s Day Special of Raspberry French Toast Sandwich serviced on Newtown sour dough bread egg washed with cinnamon crust, stuffed with chèvre and raspberry jam.

 Zynodoa
4 pm to 9:30 pm
Special four-course tasting dinner menu.
To make your reservation, click here or call: 540-885-7775

Other Brunch Spots:
The Shack open 10:30 am-2 pm
Byers Street Bistro brunch served from 11 am-2 pm
The Depot Grille brunch served from 11 am-2 pm
Farmhouse Kitchen & Wares (OPEN for brunch on Saturday from 8 am-3 pm)
Mill Street Grill brunch served from 11 am-3 pm

Treat Dad to a Beer Tour this Father’s Day

  A post shared by beerwerkstrail (@shenandoahbeerwerks) on Jun 20, 2016 at 5:23am PDT What beer adventure best describes the father figure in your life? This Father’s Day send Dad on a brew tour of the Shenandoah Valley where he can taste some of the best craft beer in the country while exploring the great … Continue reading Treat Dad to a Beer Tour this Father’s Day

What beer adventure best describes the father figure in your life? This Father’s Day send Dad on a brew tour of the Shenandoah Valley where he can taste some of the best craft beer in the country while exploring the great outdoors. For Dads’ who like an adrenaline rush induced by mountain biking see the “Hoppy” IPA Dad adventure; for Dads’ who enjoy the calm waters by kayak see Living “Lager” Dad; for those Dads’ who like to keep it simple and stick to the trails try the Traditional ‘Ale Dad daytrip; and for the Dads’ looking to catch both a prizewinning fish and a cold beer the Fishing for Stout Dad is the way to go.

“Hoppy” IPA Dad

Pairing bold flavors and extreme sports this adventure is perfect for the Dad looking to push the limits. Hop on a mountain bike and explore the trails at Massanutten’s Mountain Bike Park offering a variety of trails for all levels; from veteran riders looking for a challenge to aspiring riders looking for a few pointers. Their Pathway Package includes a 75-minute lesson, bike rental and 3 hours of trail use. 4-hour and 8-hour rental and lift ticket options are also available. Other cycling options include Rocktown Trails at Hillandale Park in Harrisonburg.  This shared-use trail, offers three different levels of difficulty to appeal to a complete spectrum of cyclists, runners and hikers.  After the adrenaline rush is over, check out the craft beer selection in Harrisonburg and try up to four different breweries like Brothers Craft Brewing and Three Notch’d Brewing Company.

Other brew options for Harrisonburg, include:

Pale Fire Brewing >
Wolfe Street Brewing >

To book your mountain biking excursion visit the Massanutten’s Mountain Bike Park website.

Living “Lager” Dad

Great water makes great beer and that is certainly true in the Shenandoah  Valley. Live “lager” with a day on the river while enjoying some of the Valley’s fresh, craft brews. Dad can float, paddle and play as he makes his way down the mighty James River in Rockbridge County. He can take advantage of the great fishing opportunities or just relax as the river gently takes him to Glasgow where the river excursion ends and the beer tour begins. Visit Lexington/Rockbridge’s two breweries Great Valley Farm Brewery and Devils Backbone Outpost Brewery & Taproom

Traditional ‘Ale Dad

Traditional ‘Ale Dad prefers the perfect balance of refreshing beer and outdoor adventure. Explore scenic overlooks, spectacular waterfalls and breathtaking mountain views throughout Augusta County—home to some of the best hikes around. Both locals and visitors enjoy Crabtree Falls a beautiful 3-hour waterfall hike featuring a series of five cascades falling 1,200 feet. Or if you’ve come for the views, try Humpback Rocks. This amazing view of the Valley is a 2-mile trek with a gain of 800 feet of elevation. After taking in the sights and scenes from above, head down into the Valley to Waynesboro’s  Basic City Brewing Company where cold beer and food trucks await. Before you head to the not-so-sleepy, City of Staunton stop by Stable Craft Brewing and enjoy a pint on their patio or head to Seven Arrows for a session beer in their comfortable taproom. Next and last stop is Staunton where Dad can choose from up to four different breweries to try, along with a great restaurant scene. Staunton’s breweries include:

fishing for stout Dad

Whether Dad’s fishing for trout or a handcrafted stout, we’ve got him covered! With nearly 3,000 miles of public trout water in and around the Shenandoah Valley, Dad can spend the day learning how to fly fish with a private instructor or take a floating trip—warm water floats available— in search of a trophy trout, largemouth and smallmouth bass, musky, or carp. He can learn casting techniques from some of the best anglers in the Valley or more seasoned fishermen can take a guided trip. Check out these experienced outfitters located throughout the Valley to book Dad’s next fishing trip:

 Mossy Creek Fly Fishing in Harrisonburg
 John Roberts Fly Fishing in Lexington
South River Fly Shop in Waynesboro

There is no better way to celebrate the days catch than with a valley brewed beer. End your day at one (or two) of the 13 breweries along the Shenandoah Beerwerks Trail.

Staunton Architecture: Gospel Hill

The beautiful name Gospel Hill comes from the sounds ringing out from Sampson Eagon’s blacksmith shop. 1700s religious meetings occurred in Eagon’s shop, and of course, that included singing. Gospel Hill Historic District is on the National Register of Historic Places and is home to grand old trees and grander homes. 238 E. Beverley Street … Continue reading Staunton Architecture: Gospel Hill

The beautiful name Gospel Hill comes from the sounds ringing out from Sampson Eagon’s blacksmith shop. 1700s religious meetings occurred in Eagon’s shop, and of course, that included singing. Gospel Hill Historic District is on the National Register of Historic Places and is home to grand old trees and grander homes.

238 E. Beverley Street is a beautiful 1840s home that was remodeled by T. J. Collins in 1915. Of additional interest: the home sits on the site of Sampson Eagon’s blacksmith shop; the place where Gospel Hill got its name.

“Oakdene”

An elaborate Queen Anne called “Oakdene” sits at 605 E. Beverley Street. It was built in 1893 by Virginia Lieutenant Governor Edward Echols and features an owl atop its turret.

Civil War mapmaker Jed Hotchkiss added an elaborate addition to the ca. 1840 house at 437 E. Beverley Street in 1888. He called the home “The Oaks.”

“The Oaks”

Kalorama is a street name in Gospel Hill, but it’s also the name of the beautiful home at 19 S. Market Street. While a private residence now, the home has seen use as a hotel, girls school, and a public library over the years since its 1810 construction.

An unusual style, certainly for Staunton, is the 1891 Richardsonian Romanesque home standing at 215 Kalorama Street. T. J. Collins designed it for the City Treasurer, Arista Hogue. The home’s date and the initial A.H. are carved into one of the stones on the façade. This home is the only one of its style in Staunton.

You learned about the First Presbyterian Church and its architectural and historical significance to Staunton, Virginia, and the United States. The church campus initially included a manse – the home of the minister. That manse is now known as the Woodrow Wilson Birthplace. It was built in 1846 in Greek Revival style. It features 12 rooms; in one of the, Thomas Woodrow Wilson was born on December 28, 1856. Wilson went on to become America’s 28th President.

There are at least 12 more sites within Gospel Hill of historic significance marked in the Historic Staunton Foundation walking tour map. Be sure to pick up a copy from their office at the R. R. Smith Center or check out their Flickr Account for a “virtual tour” of Gospel Hill. 

And while you’re here, be sure and visit some of the other historic districts in downtown Staunton:
Beverley District
Wharf District 
Newtown District 
Stuart Addition 

Staunton Architecture: Stuart Addition

Stuart Addition Historic District is named for Judge Archibald Stuart, a wealthy, influential resident who deeded the area to the city in 1803. Mary Baldwin University if located within this historic district, as are notable historic churches. Augusta Female Seminary was founded in 1842, but you know it today as Mary Baldwin University. The large … Continue reading Staunton Architecture: Stuart Addition

Stuart Addition Historic District is named for Judge Archibald Stuart, a wealthy, influential resident who deeded the area to the city in 1803. Mary Baldwin University if located within this historic district, as are notable historic churches.

First Presbyterian Church

Augusta Female Seminary was founded in 1842, but you know it today as Mary Baldwin University. The large Greek Revival building on campus dates to 1844 and was built to meet the needs of the growing school. The building is often the backdrop for photos; take one there yourself.

The Presbyterian congregation in Staunton predates the First Presbyterian Church at 100 E. Frederick Street. Fellowship of congregants began in 1804 and their first house of worship was built in 1818. The church you see today is their second: a Romanesque Revival with a tall white spire. It was dedicated in 1872.

An interesting bit of extra history about First Presbyterian: Reverend Joseph Ruggles Wilson was at the pulpit when his son Thomas Woodrow Wilson was born in 1856. The basin used to baptize the would-be President of the United States is still in use.

The Catholic Church is at home at St. Francis of Assisi Parish, a commanding Gothic Revival designed by none other than T. J. Collins, a parishioner, and built in 1895. The church was Collins’ first major commission in Staunton. 

Formerly the Old YMCA

In our article about the Beverley Historic District we introduced you to a one-time YMCA the locals refer to as the clock tower. In Stuart Addition Historic District, we have another one-time YMCA for your interest. The Renaissance Revival at 41 N. Augusta was built as a YMCA in 1914. The estate of Cyrus McCormick, the inventor of the mechanical reaper, donated $50,000 toward its completion. Today the Y is a series of quirky lofts – the Old Y Lofts – that include nostalgic pieces of the building’s original use. In one loft, a bed platform is actually the old stage. In another, a fun trap door leads into the old pool, which is now a wine cellar. Fun, huh?!

There are at least 13 more sites within Stuart Addition of historic significance marked in the Historic Staunton Foundation walking tour map. Be sure to pick up a copy from their office at the R. R. Smith Center or check out their Flickr Account for a “virtual tour” of Stuart Addition.

And while you’re here, be sure and visit some of the other historic districts in downtown Staunton:
Beverley District
Wharf District 
Newtown District 

Staunton Architecture: Newtown Historic District

If you suppose that Newtown is so named to distinguish it from what was once known as Oldtown, you’re right. Newtown is Staunton’s oldest residential neighborhood and home to significant landmarks. Staunton’s oldest church is Trinity Episcopal, built in 1855 in Neo-Gothic style. It’s actually the third house of worship on the site; the first … Continue reading Staunton Architecture: Newtown Historic District

If you suppose that Newtown is so named to distinguish it from what was once known as Oldtown, you’re right. Newtown is Staunton’s oldest residential neighborhood and home to significant landmarks.

Trinity Episcopal Church
Trinity Episcopal Church

Staunton’s oldest church is Trinity Episcopal, built in 1855 in Neo-Gothic style. It’s actually the third house of worship on the site; the first was built in 1763. Trinity is a must-see when you’re in Staunton. One dozen Louis Comfort Tiffany stained glass windows grace the space with The Ascension Triptych (dated 1897) believed to be the first installed.

Companion buildings on the Trinity campus include the 1872 Parish House of Gothic Revival style, and the Trinity Rectory (also 1872) in Jacobean Revival style, a rare architectural gem in this area.

From Trinity Church emerged Emmanuel Episcopal Church, an 1894 Gothic Revival designed by T. J. Collins. The interior is no longer exactly what he planned, as church traditions and needs evolved to dictate a shift in floor plan. If you pay a visit, you won’t be able to ignore the soaring vaulted ceiling with its delicate details.

Beverley Street School Studio

Built in 1887, the Stonewall Jackson School was Staunton’s first permanent public school. In 1912, President Woodrow Wilson reviewed a parade in his honor from the front of the school. In 1913, T. J. Collins directed a remodeling of it. Today the school building is a school of a different sort. The Beverley Street Studio School occupies the first floor.

The 1792 Smith Thompson House at 701 W. Beverley Street is an original log home and one of Staunton’s last 18th century structures.  It was built by Revolutionary War soldier, Smith Thompson, a barber who showcased a razor he said he used to shave George Washington. The left side of the house is an addition to the right and sits on a stone foundation. It was appended in 1870.

There are at least 13 more sites of historic significance marked in the Historic Staunton Foundation walking tour map. Be sure to pick up a copy from their office at the R. R. Smith Center or check out their Flickr Account for a “virtual tour” of Newtown Historic District

And while you’re here, be sure and visit some of the other historic districts in downtown Staunton:

Staunton Architecture: The Wharf District

In existence because of the Virginia Central Railroad arrival in 1854, the Wharf Area Historic District is on the National Register of Historic Places. Therefore, it’s no surprise to find the 1902 C & O Train Station among one the key architectural prizes in The Wharf. While it’s not the original 1854 depot (rather, it’s the … Continue reading Staunton Architecture: The Wharf District

In existence because of the Virginia Central Railroad arrival in 1854, the Wharf Area Historic District is on the National Register of Historic Places. Therefore, it’s no surprise to find the 1902 C & O Train Station among one the key architectural prizes in The Wharf. While it’s not the original 1854 depot (rather, it’s the third), the building’s style is what is unusual. Who would consider Bungalow style for a train depot? T. J. Collins, of course. Today the depot is home to The Depot Grille.

As business boomed when the railroad came to town, The Wharf Warehouses sprung up across from the depot to support the activity. Built between 1870 and 1910, this row of brick warehouses were the place to find the farmers, grocers, and wholesalers engaging in commerce. The buildings now house retailers, offices, and restaurants rather than goods and supplies.

Also adjacent to the train depot is The American Hotel, circa 1855. The Greek Revival structure was built by the railroad and served the traveling public well. A key claim to fame was the 1869 overnight stay by President and Mrs. Ulysses S. Grant, who emerged from the balcony while being serenaded by the Stonewall Brigade Band outside. Visitors to The American Hotel today are likely there for a special event. The structure has been restored and renovated, keeping the 1950s architecture and details in the Banquet Room.

The Historic Staunton Building at 120 S. Augusta Street was built in 1876. There are two especially unique facts about it: 1) The upper levels of the façade is fluted metal giving the appearance of columns; 2) it’s built over the still-flowing Lewis Creek. Today you’ll find attorneys and other professionals at work within the building.

Continue your virtual “walking tour” of The Wharf District by visiting the Historic Staunton Foundation’s Flickr Account. 

Check out the other historic districts in honor of Virginia Architecture Week and visit:

 

 

 

Staunton Architecture: The Five Historic Districts

As you look upward at Staunton’s buildings, you’re obviously looking at the handiwork of many men. Yet, one family of men contributed to the look and style of most of what you see. Architect T. J. Collins, his sons Will and Sam, and his grandson Joseph Johnson left an indelible mark on the architecture of the Queen City. … Continue reading Staunton Architecture: The Five Historic Districts

As you look upward at Staunton’s buildings, you’re obviously looking at the handiwork of many men. Yet, one family of men contributed to the look and style of most of what you see. Architect T. J. Collins, his sons Will and Sam, and his grandson Joseph Johnson left an indelible mark on the architecture of the Queen City.

Take a mini tour of the five historic districts in honor of Virginia Architecture Week.

historic beverley District

The center of downtown Staunton is the Beverley Historic District, an area found on the National Register of Historic Places. The buildings here date between the 1870s and 1920s, with one as old as 1830. That building is home to Cranberry’s Grocery & Eatery on S. New Street. Its previous uses include life as a laundry facility, taxi garage, print shop, and tailor’s studio. As you look up at the building, note the original stone still exposed on either side.

Perhaps Staunton’s most recognizable architectural feature is the clock tower at the corner of Beverley Street and Central Avenue, city center. The building and tower date to 1890 and originally housed the YMCA and all its athletic space. Indeed, a bowling alley, gym and track resided behind those walls! Today the first floor is the Clocktower Restaurant and Bar and the Clock Tower Convenience Store.

If the clock tower is Staunton’s most recognizable architectural gem, the 1896 Masonic Temple is the most imposing. Rising high above the rest of the skyline, the gable roof is quickly identifiable. In addition to its life as a Masonic Temple, the building houses Baja Bean Co., The Split Banana Co., and H. L. Lang & Co. Jewelers.

Stained Glass Skylight in the National Valley Bank

 The T. J. Collins-designed National Valley Bank building on West Beverley Street was built in 1903 and is quite distinct from other buildings in Staunton. It’s of the Beaux-Arts style and features ornate exterior carved limestone. The 10′ x 34′ stained glass skylight is the highlight inside!

One of the most beautiful buildings on New Street is the old Eakleton Hotel, now the R. R. Smith Center for History & Art. Designed by T. J. Collins in the French Second Empire style, the building boasts a series of three ornate iron balconies, arches, and mansard roof. The original windows are still intact in this 1894 structure that now houses the Staunton Augusta Art Center, the Augusta County Historical Society, and Historic Staunton Foundation.

Beverley Cigar Store

We’d be remiss to tell you about T. J. Collins and identify some of his genius without telling you where he drew his plans. On the Corner of Beverley and Augusta Streets is the distinguishable Marquis Building, notable for its rounded corner entrance and stone columns. The style is Romanesque Revival and the building is now home to the Beverley Cigar Store.

One of the youngest buildings in the Beverley Historic District is The Stonewall Jackson Hotel with its iconic neon sign atop the roof. The Colonial Revival was built in 1924 for $750,000, which would be close to a cool $10.5 million today. For perspective, 2005 hotel restoration, renovation and expansion came in at $21.5 million. Indeed, its the beauty that awaits inside that deserves nearly all of the attention. For example, guests are treated to a 1924 Wurlitzer Organ, believed to be the only remaining one of its kind. Additionally, the marble floors have been restored, and original features like the chandeliers and sconces remain in use.

Visit the R. R. Smith Center to pick up your copy of “A Self-Guided Tour of Staunton’s Historic Districts” at the Historic Staunton Foundation for more information on the Beverley Street Historic District and its 10 other notable buildings. Or to complete your virtual tour check out the Historic Staunton Foundation’s Flickr Account and see the other architectural treasures unique to downtown Staunton.

Check back each day as we continue our series on the Historic Districts of Staunton.

Beverley Historic District

REASON #17: NOT TO MISS STAUNTON IN ’17

REASON #17: red wing roots festival And last but not least…#17 is the Red Wing Roots Festival. With the beautiful backdrop of the towering limestone formations, known as The Natural Chimneys, this family-friendly music festival features the best of both worlds: great music in the great outdoors. Spend the weekend listening to the music stylings … Continue reading REASON #17: NOT TO MISS STAUNTON IN ’17

REASON #17: red wing roots festival

And last but not least…#17 is the Red Wing Roots Festival. With the beautiful backdrop of the towering limestone formations, known as The Natural Chimneys, this family-friendly music festival features the best of both worlds: great music in the great outdoors. Spend the weekend listening to the music stylings of The Steel Wheels, who call Virginia’s Blue Ridge Mountains home, while immersed in outdoor activities including daily hikes, morning yoga, fun runs and more. Set-up camp for the weekend or come for the day—either way you’re guaranteed to have fun! For the entire 2017 line-up click here. 

For the complete list see:
REASON #1 – Queen City Potter Party
REASON #2 – Polyface Farm’s Lunatic Tours
REASON #3 – Staunton Music Festival’s 20th Anniversary Season
REASON #4 – Staunton: Your Gateway to Shenandoah National Park
REASON #5 – ASC’s 2017/18 Season Announcement
REASSON #6 – The Shack Makeover
REASON #7 – More Brew
REASON #8 – An Elegantly English Tea
REASON #9 – Fall Foliage Bike Festival
REASON #10 – Virginia Hot Glass Festival
REASON #11 – Winter Wine Festival 
REASON #12 – Heifetz Institute’s Festival of Concerts
REASON #13 –  Crack the Code Escape Room
REASON #14 – July 4th with Wilson Fairchild
REASON #15 – Family Fun at NatureRidge
REASON #16 – Food Truck Battle
    
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REASON #16: NOT TO MISS STAUNTON IN ’17

REASON #16: food truck battle and beer competition Whose food (and beer) will reign supreme? Food trucks—and craft breweries—go head-to-head in the annual food truck battle hosted by the Frontier Culture Museum. Fans taste, sip, and vote for their favorites during this festive event which features live music and children’s activities. Bring your chairs and blankets … Continue reading REASON #16: NOT TO MISS STAUNTON IN ’17

REASON #16: food truck battle and beer competition


Whose food (and beer) will reign supreme? Food trucks—and craft breweries—go head-to-head in the annual food truck battle hosted by the Frontier Culture Museum. Fans taste, sip, and vote for their favorites during this festive event which features live music and children’s activities. Bring your chairs and blankets and spend the afternoon enjoying the best food and beer from across the state. For foodie and craft beer lovers this event is a MUST, so save the date for Sunday, September 3, 2017.

For the complete list see:
REASON #1 – Queen City Potter Party
REASON #2 – Polyface Farm’s Lunatic Tours
REASON #3 – Staunton Music Festival’s 20th Anniversary Season
REASON #4 – Staunton: Your Gateway to Shenandoah National Park
REASON #5 – ASC’s 2017/18 Season Announcement
REASSON #6 – The Shack Makeover
REASON #7 – More Brew
REASON #8 – An Elegantly English Tea
REASON #9 – Fall Foliage Bike Festival
REASON #10 – Virginia Hot Glass Festival
REASON #11 – Winter Wine Festival 
REASON #12 – Heifetz Institute’s Festival of Concerts
REASON #13 –  Crack the Code Escape Room
REASON #14 – July 4th with Wilson Fairchild
REASON #15 – Family Fun at NatureRidge
   
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REASON #15: NOT TO MISS STAUNTON IN ’17

REASON #15 family fun at natureridge For families looking to visit, Staunton has no shortage of family-friendly outdoor activities. From playgrounds to hiking trails, swimming pools to disc golf, Staunton’s parks offer families an opportunity to unwind and unplug. And now families can immerse themselves in creative, outdoor play at NatureRidge, Staunton’s first natural playground located at … Continue reading REASON #15: NOT TO MISS STAUNTON IN ’17

REASON #15 family fun at natureridge


For families looking to visit, Staunton has no shortage of family-friendly outdoor activities. From playgrounds to hiking trails, swimming pools to disc golf, Staunton’s parks offer families an opportunity to unwind and unplug. And now families can immerse themselves in creative, outdoor play at NatureRidge, Staunton’s first natural playground located at Montgomery Hall Park. Using mostly natural elements and materials, the new playground features an elevated zig zag, stump steps and rock quarry, mud kitchen, wooden ship and elevated sandbox allowing kids of all ages and abilities to explore, build and experiment. NatureRidge is still a work in progress and there are plans to construct a playhouse; a willow dome as well as a grass covered tunnel; and a small amphitheater for impromptu performances. Though April 2017 is the projected timeframe for completion, the park is OPEN to all for exploration and fun!

For the complete list see:
REASON #1 – Queen City Potter Party
REASON #2 – Polyface Farm’s Lunatic Tours
REASON #3 – Staunton Music Festival’s 20th Anniversary Season
REASON #4 – Staunton: Your Gateway to Shenandoah National Park
REASON #5 – ASC’s 2017/18 Season Announcement
REASSON #6 – The Shack Makeover
REASON #7 – More Brew
REASON #8 – An Elegantly English Tea
REASON #9 – Fall Foliage Bike Festival
REASON #10 – Virginia Hot Glass Festival
REASON #11 – Winter Wine Festival 
REASON #12 – Heifetz Institute’s Festival of Concerts
REASON #13 –  Crack the Code Escape Room
REASON #14 – July 4th with Wilson Fairchild
  
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REASON #14: NOT TO MISS STAUNTON IN ’17

REASON #14: America’s birthday celebration with Wilson Fairchild Wil and Langdon Reid, sons of Harold and Don Reid of the Statler Brothers, will revive the country groups’ famous “Happy Birthday USA” celebration. The free concert started in 1970 and drew nearly 100,000 people to Staunton each Fourth of July. America’s Birthday Celebration includes a parade, … Continue reading REASON #14: NOT TO MISS STAUNTON IN ’17

REASON #14: America’s birthday celebration with Wilson Fairchild

Wil and Langdon Reid, sons of Harold and Don Reid of the Statler Brothers, will revive the country groups’ famous “Happy Birthday USA” celebration. The free concert started in 1970 and drew nearly 100,000 people to Staunton each Fourth of July. America’s Birthday Celebration includes a parade, concessions and entertainment throughout the day. Wil and Langdon’s country group, Wilson Fairchild, will headline the event which will take place at Gypsy Hill Park. For more details check out: America’s Birthday Celebration’s website.

For the complete list see:
REASON #1 – Queen City Potter Party
REASON #2 – Polyface Farm’s Lunatic Tours
REASON #3 – Staunton Music Festival’s 20th Anniversary Season
REASON #4 – Staunton: Your Gateway to Shenandoah National Park
REASON #5 – ASC’s 2017/18 Season Announcement
REASSON #6 – The Shack Makeover
REASON #7 – More Brew
REASON #8 – An Elegantly English Tea
REASON #9 – Fall Foliage Bike Festival
REASON #10 – Virginia Hot Glass Festival
REASON #11 – Winter Wine Festival 
REASON #12 – Heifetz Institute’s Festival of Concerts
REASON #13 –  Crack the Code Escape Room
 
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REASON #13: NOT TO MISS STAUNTON IN ’17

REASON #13: crack the code Escape room Enter the Escape Room.  An interactive real life escape game in which you must solve the puzzles in order to escape the room. You have 60 minutes to find the clues, solve the puzzles and make your way to freedom. Choose from two different themed rooms, DaVinci’s Office … Continue reading REASON #13: NOT TO MISS STAUNTON IN ’17

REASON #13: crack the code Escape room

Enter the Escape Room.  An interactive real life escape game in which you must solve the puzzles in order to escape the room. You have 60 minutes to find the clues, solve the puzzles and make your way to freedom. Choose from two different themed rooms, DaVinci’s Office and The Bunker; with a third room, Asylum, opening in a few weeks. See if you are up to the challenge and crack the code—a fun alternative to the same old birthday party and family gathering. Now taking reservations!

For the complete list see:
REASON #1 – Queen City Potter Party
REASON #2 – Polyface Farm’s Lunatic Tours
REASON #3 – Staunton Music Festival’s 20th Anniversary Season
REASON #4 – Staunton: Your Gateway to Shenandoah National Park
REASON #5 – ASC’s 2017/18 Season Announcement
REASSON #6 – The Shack Makeover
REASON #7 – More Brew
REASON #8 – An Elegantly English Tea
REASON #9 – Fall Foliage Bike Festival
REASON #10 – Virginia Hot Glass Festival
REASON #11 – Winter Wine Festival 
REASON #12 – Heifetz Institute’s Festival of Concerts

 
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REASON #12: NOT TO MISS STAUNTON IN ’17

REASON #12: Heifetz Institute’s Festival of concerts June 24-August 4, 2017 During the summer months, Staunton abounds with the sounds of music! The Heifetz Institute’s Festival of Concerts kicks off a summer of music making starting with their Opening Concert and Convocation on June 24 and the music doesn’t stop until August 4. The six-week … Continue reading REASON #12: NOT TO MISS STAUNTON IN ’17

REASON #12: Heifetz Institute’s Festival of concerts

June 24-August 4, 2017

During the summer months, Staunton abounds with the sounds of music! The Heifetz Institute’s Festival of Concerts kicks off a summer of music making starting with their Opening Concert and Convocation on June 24 and the music doesn’t stop until August 4. The six-week festival consists of over 40 events including daily concerts, a speaker series and special performances featuring their world-renowned faculty and guest artists. The Institute serves as a training ground for outstanding string players, ages 13-25, who study alongside faculty from top universities, conservatories and performance groups from around the globe. Stay tuned as they announce their season programming on their website. And if you don’t want to miss a moment of outstanding music, all summer long, get your 2017 Season Pass online which will guarantee you a seat at every show!

For the complete list see:
REASON #1 – Queen City Potter Party
REASON #2 – Polyface Farm’s Lunatic Tours
REASON #3 – Staunton Music Festival’s 20th Anniversary Season
REASON #4 – Staunton: Your Gateway to Shenandoah National Park
REASON #5 – ASC’s 2017/18 Season Announcement
REASSON #6 – The Shack Makeover
REASON #7 – More Brew
REASON #8 – An Elegantly English Tea
REASON #9 – Fall Foliage Bike Festival
REASON #10 – Virginia Hot Glass Festival
REASON #11 – Winter Wine Festival 

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REASON #11: NOT TO MISS STAUNTON IN ’17

REASON #11: WINTER WINE FESTIVAL February 25 from 12-6 pm  Thaw out this winter with the 7th Annual Winter Wine Festival hosted by the Stonewall Jackson Hotel in partnership with the Historic Staunton Foundation. Spend the afternoon sampling wine from over a dozen wineries and vineyards, enjoy food by local purveyors and live music. Looking … Continue reading REASON #11: NOT TO MISS STAUNTON IN ’17

REASON #11: WINTER WINE FESTIVAL

February 25 from 12-6 pm 

Thaw out this winter with the 7th Annual Winter Wine Festival hosted by the Stonewall Jackson Hotel in partnership with the Historic Staunton Foundation. Spend the afternoon sampling wine from over a dozen wineries and vineyards, enjoy food by local purveyors and live music.

Looking for a mid-winter weekend getaway? Check out the Winter Wine Festival package the Stonewall Jackson Hotel is offering. This discounted lodging package includes:
-Overnight accommodations
-Two tickets to the wine festival
-Breakfast for two and overnight self-parking

For the hotel package—while supplies last—visit, the Stonewall Jackson Hotel website, here.

For tickets to the Winter Wine Festival, visit the Historic Staunton Foundation website.

For the complete list see:
REASON #1 – Queen City Potter Party
REASON #2 – Polyface Farm’s Lunatic Tours
REASON #3 – Staunton Music Festival’s 20th Anniversary Season
REASON #4 – Staunton: Your Gateway to Shenandoah National Park
REASON #5 – ASC’s 2017/18 Season Announcement
REASSON #6 – The Shack Makeover
REASON #7 – More Brew
REASON #8 – An Elegantly English Tea
REASON #9 – Fall Foliage Bike Festival
REASON #10 – Virginia Hot Glass Festival
 

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REASON #10: NOT TO MISS STAUNTON IN ’17

REASON #10: Virginia hot glass festival   May 27-28, 2017 Feel the heat of the furnace as you watch live glassblowing demonstrations and flame working techniques throughout the weekend. Visit the expansive exhibit by artists from around the region while enjoying wine tasting by Barren Ridge Vineyards. This annual event is FREE. For more details … Continue reading REASON #10: NOT TO MISS STAUNTON IN ’17

REASON #10: Virginia hot glass festival

 
May 27-28, 2017
Feel the heat of the furnace as you watch live glassblowing demonstrations and flame working techniques throughout the weekend. Visit the expansive exhibit by artists from around the region while enjoying wine tasting by Barren Ridge Vineyards. This annual event is FREE. For more details check out Sunspots Studio.

For the complete list see:
REASON #1 – Queen City Potter Party
REASON #2 – Polyface Farm’s Lunatic Tours
REASON #3 – Staunton Music Festival’s 20th Anniversary Season
REASON #4 – Staunton: Your Gateway to Shenandoah National Park
REASON #5 – ASC’s 2017/18 Season Announcement
REASSON #6 – The Shack Makeover
REASON #7 – More Brew
REASON #8 – An Elegantly English Tea
REASON #9 – Fall Foliage Bike Festival

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REASON #9: NOT TO MISS STAUNTON IN ’17

REASON #9: Shenandoah fall foliage bike festival October 20-22, 2017 With the fall colors on full display, take in the scenic views of the Shenandoah Valley with a full weekend of riding, sightseeing and Staunton hospitality. A favorite of cyclists up and down the Mid-Atlantic, this annual bike festival offers a range of riding opportunities … Continue reading REASON #9: NOT TO MISS STAUNTON IN ’17

REASON #9: Shenandoah fall foliage bike festival

Bike in the Shenandoah Valley

October 20-22, 2017
With the fall colors on full display, take in the scenic views of the Shenandoah Valley with a full weekend of riding, sightseeing and Staunton hospitality. A favorite of cyclists up and down the Mid-Atlantic, this annual bike festival offers a range of riding opportunities for all skill levels from motivated century riders to families with young children and everything in between. Fall is a popular time to visit Staunton so be sure and book NOW! For details on the bike festival, visit their website.

For the complete list see:

REASON #1 – Queen City Potter Party
REASON #2 – Polyface Farm’s Lunatic Tours
REASON #3 – Staunton Music Festival’s 20th Anniversary Season
REASON #4 – Staunton: Your Gateway to Shenandoah National Park
REASON #5 – ASC’s 2017/18 Season Announcement
REASSON #6 – The Shack Makeover
REASON #7 – More Brew
REASON #8 – An Elegantly English Tea

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REASON #8: NOT TO MISS STAUNTON IN ’17

REASON #8: an elegantly English tea Enjoy an authentically English tea at the Anne Hathaway Cottage Tea Room. Delight in a beautiful spread of homemade tea sandwiches, shortbread, and scones all served with clotted cream and jams—imported from England and served in fine china. The pleasant proprietors offer insight into the history of high tea and … Continue reading REASON #8: NOT TO MISS STAUNTON IN ’17

REASON #8: an elegantly English tea

Enjoy an authentically English tea at the Anne Hathaway Cottage Tea Room. Delight in a beautiful spread of homemade tea sandwiches, shortbread, and scones all served with clotted cream and jams—imported from England and served in fine china. The pleasant proprietors offer insight into the history of high tea and conclude the afternoon with the custard dessert posset which makes an appearance in Shakespeare’s Macbeth. After tea, peruse the rare collection of tea sets and imported goods. The Tea Room will re-open in April just in time for you to enjoy their beautiful gardens. Reservations are highly recommended and fill up quickly so be sure and book your tea when planning your next trip to the Queen City.

For the complete list see:
REASON #1 – Queen City Potter Party
REASON #2 – Polyface Farm’s Lunatic Tours
REASON #3 – Staunton Music Festival’s 20th Anniversary Season
REASON #4 – Staunton: Your Gateway to Shenandoah National Park
REASON #5 – ASC’s 2017/18 Season Announcement
REASSON #6 – The Shack Makeover
REASON #7 – More Brew

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REASON #7: NOT TO MISS STAUNTON IN ’17

REASON #7: more brew Looking to take a beercation? Look no further. Staunton’s newest brewery, Bedlam Brewing plans to open on January 25 becoming the 14th brewery on the Shenandoah Beerwerks Trail. Plan your next adventure using the Beerwerks website which includes a trail map, a complete listing of the participating breweries, lodging options and much more! … Continue reading REASON #7: NOT TO MISS STAUNTON IN ’17

REASON #7: more brew

Looking to take a beercation? Look no further. Staunton’s newest brewery, Bedlam Brewing plans to open on January 25 becoming the Craft beer from local brewery14th brewery on the Shenandoah Beerwerks Trail. Plan your next adventure using the Beerwerks website which includes a trail map, a complete listing of the participating breweries, lodging options and much more! To check out the status of Bedlam Brewing check out their Facebook Page.

In other beer news, Shenandoah Valley Brewing Company is moving their operation to 103 E. Beverley Street. The new location will allow the brewery to double their production and add more beers to their already robust list of quality beers.

For the complete list see:
REASON #1 – Queen City Potter Party
REASON #2 – Polyface Farm’s Lunatic Tours
REASON #3 – Staunton Music Festival’s 20th Anniversary Season
REASON #4 – Staunton: Your Gateway to Shenandoah National Park
REASON #5 – ASC’s 2017/18 Season Announcement
REASON #6 – The Shack Makeover

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REASON #6: NOT TO MISS STAUNTON IN ’17

Reason #6 The Shack Makeover After a brief hiatus, award-winning chef Ian Boden is back in the kitchen and is excited to show off the recent renovation of the 26-seat restaurant he calls “The Shack.” Check out a sneak peek of the newly made over restaurant and don’t forget to make your reservations when booking … Continue reading REASON #6: NOT TO MISS STAUNTON IN ’17

Reason #6 The Shack MakeoverReason #6 The Shack Makeover

After a brief hiatus, award-winning chef Ian Boden is back in the kitchen and is excited to show off the recent renovation of the 26-seat restaurant he calls “The Shack.” Check out a sneak peek of the newly made over restaurant and don’t forget to make your reservations when booking your next trip to Staunton. You don’t want to miss “The South’s Best New Restaurants,” as voted by Southern Living. Make your reservations here!


For the complete list see:
REASON #1 – Queen City Potter Party
REASON #2 – Polyface Farm’s Lunatic Tours
REASON #3 – Staunton Music Festival’s 20th Anniversary Season
REASON #4 – Staunton: Your Gateway to Shenandoah National Park
REASON #5 – ASC’s 2017/18 Season Announcement

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Gypsy Hill Park: The Place for Summer Entertainment

Locals and visitors, rejoice! There is near-nightly summer entertainment at Gypsy Hill Park, one of the jewels in the Staunton Parks & Recreation crown. Pack yourself a  picnic and spread out on the lawn for a terrific evening of music and family fun. MONDAY NIGHTS 8 p.m. June through August: Find The Stonewall Brigade Band on the … Continue reading Gypsy Hill Park: The Place for Summer Entertainment

Gypsy Hill Park 2

Locals and visitors, rejoice! There is near-nightly summer entertainment at Gypsy Hill Park, one of the jewels in the Staunton Parks & Recreation crown. Pack yourself a  picnic and spread out on the lawn for a terrific evening of music and family fun.

MONDAY NIGHTS

8 p.m. June through August: Find The Stonewall Brigade Band on the bandstand. It is the oldest continuous community band in the country, dating to 1855. Initially a brass band, now it’s a full concert band of at least 70 performers from the 120-strong roster of musicians. Each concert is different and includes a variety of genres. Of special note is July 17, a concert created just for the kids and featuring their favorite music from Looney Tunes and Sesame Street to Disney’s latest hits Frozen and Moana.

TUESDAY NIGHTS

7 p.m. in July and August: Praise in the Park is a series of concerts of gospel, contemporary, and hip hop Christian music along with family activities like free pony rides (July 11) and free pizza and soda along with bounce house (August 8). Concessions are available.

WEDNESDAY NIGHTS

7 p.m. in July and August: Bluegrass! If you love a little pickin’ and grinnin’, this is the night for you.  You won’t want to miss this series. Highlights to include the traditional Larry Stephenson Band (August 2) and the brother and sister duo, Marteka and William, performing in the styles of Lester Flatt and Earl Scruggs.

THURSDAY NIGHTS

7 p.m. July through September 1: Jazz in the Park takes control of the bandstand to bring you exciting Big Band, Prohibition era jazz, Blues, and even a little Zydeco this summer. JUST JAZZIN BIG BAND kicks off the 30th Season of Jazz in the Park on July 6. Hot summer nights will only turn up a notch when these exciting entertainers come to Staunton.

FRIDAY NIGHTS

June through August 4: Family-friendly movies under the stars create memories! Bring your kiddos and a big blanket to Family Nite Flix, lay back and watch some classics like Sixteen Candles and some new flicks, too, like Finding Dory and Zootopia. Concessions will be available.

Saturdays and Sundays in Staunton’s parks are great for swimming, golfing, picnicking, hiking, and biking. Make these green spaces your summer go-to for unwinding any day of the week. Happy Summer!

>> Summer 2017 Event Brochure

Summertime on the Frontier

Staunton’s Frontier Culture Museum is one of the most underrated destinations in Virginia. There are 11 living history sites on about 150 acres that are representative of more than 200 years of immigration and settlement. It’s high time the world knows about this significant opportunity in the Shenandoah Valley of Virginia, and one sure way to draw a crowd is … Continue reading Summertime on the Frontier

May Day at the Frontier Culture Museum
May Day at the Frontier Culture Museum

Staunton’s Frontier Culture Museum is one of the most underrated destinations in Virginia. There are 11 living history sites on about 150 acres that are representative of more than 200 years of immigration and settlement. It’s high time the world knows about this significant opportunity in the Shenandoah Valley of Virginia, and one sure way to draw a crowd is to throw a party. So let’s go!

Summertime is the best time to be at the Frontier Culture Museum. Concerts and special events are added bonuses to exploring the outdoor museum itself. Spend an afternoon learning something new and then settle in with a good bite to eat from a food vendor while enjoying great entertainment.

Put these on your calendar and we’ll see you on the Frontier.

August 5 :: Lammas First Fruits Fair
Bring the entire family to the annual Lammas “First Fruits” Fair, a traditional celebration of the first fruits & grains ready for harvest. This day is “pay what you will” and is an excellent opportunity for first-time guests to explore the Museum, as well as witness craftsmen demonstrating woodworking and ironworking techniques and food preparation like grain threshing and flax processing. And don’t miss the square dancing and food and craft vendors!

 

American Roots Music Concert Series

The American Roots Music Concert Series brings traditional Appalachian, old time, and bluegrass music to the Frontier Culture Museum. Every Sunday evening in August, celebrate the influence of music on our frontier culture with four entertaining concerts. Concerts are held in the Lee S. Cochran Pavilion from 5 to 7 pm and includes food and beverage vendors.

August 6: Whitetop Mountain Band
Steeped in the musical heritage and tradition of Whitetop, Virginia, this family-based band carries on the tradition of old fiddling and banjo picking.

August 13: Bud’s Collective
A driving group of West Virginia pickers, Bud’s Collective delights audiences with original bluegrass and old country songs too—you’ll likely hear something you know and love.

August 20: Commonwealth Bluegrass Band
If you love a “high lonesome sound,” you won’t want to miss Commonwealth Bluegrass Band, a harmonizing quintet pickin’ traditional and new ‘grass.

August 27: Amber Collins & Branch House Pavilion
Hailing for Floyd, Virginia, this versatile and entertaining band performs a wide range of music from original pieces and bluegrass, to gospel, Americana, and even rock.

September 3 :: Virginia Food Truck Battle
Whose food (and beer) will reign supreme? Food trucks—and craft breweries—go head-to-head in the 4th annual food truck battle hosted by the Frontier Culture Museum. Fans taste, sip, and vote for their favorites during this festive event. Eighteen Food Trucks and 6 Virginia breweries from all over the state will battle it out for “Fan Favorite!” Pick your VIP ticket zone (blue, red, or green) and enjoy tastings from 11:30 -12:30 PM from six food trucks in your zone.  Or purchase a general admission ticket and join us at 12:30 PM for a fun-filled afternoon with great food and drinks, live music, and free children’s activities.  Bring your chairs and blankets and spend the afternoon enjoying the best food and beer from across the state. For foodie and craft beer lovers this event is a MUST, so get your ticket early! 

See you soon in Staunton!

An Insider’s Guide to the Queen City Potter Party 2017

  queen city potter party september 22-24 Wizards and muggles from near and far descend upon Staunton, Virginia for the annual Queen City Potter Party. With a touch of wizardry, the historic downtown is transformed into the village of Hogsmeade. Local businesses reinvent themselves offering Harry Potter themed shopping, dining and hands-on activities for all … Continue reading An Insider’s Guide to the Queen City Potter Party 2017

 

queen city potter party

september 22-24

Wizards and muggles from near and far descend upon Staunton, Virginia for the annual Queen City Potter Party. With a touch of wizardry, the historic downtown is transformed into the village of Hogsmeade. Local businesses reinvent themselves offering Harry Potter themed shopping, dining and hands-on activities for all ages. Potter fans unlock the secrets of Hogsmeade using Marauder’s Map or explore the walkable downtown and take on the task of Horcrux Hunting using the free app Traipse— which will help you find them all. For Harry Potter fans this entertaining and family-friendly festival is not to be missed!

Visitors are greeted by Norberta the Dragon—where selfies and costumes are encouraged—Take a selfie with her! Other photo opportunities include:

  • Platform 9 3/4 awaits your arrival at Rachel’s Quilt Patch.
  • Become a Mandrake at Honey Dukes (Paris Cake Company)
  • Be cautious​ of the Goblins at Gringotts Wizards Bank (Suntrust)
  • Flying Cornish Pixies in Florish and Blotts (Black Swan Books)
  • A Life Size Prisoner of Azaban Wanted Poster
  • Daily Prophet Frontpage

hogsmeade businesses

Weasleys’ Wizard Wheezes

Use colorful potions to dissolve a magic fizzing treasure rock and find the key to your patronus’s true identity. This is but one of the enchanted activities you will find upon visiting Weasleys’ Wizard Wheezes (Pufferbellies Toys & Books) located at 15 West Johnson Street.

The Three Broomsticks

Quench your thirst with some butterbeer. On tap—all weekend— at The Three Broomsticks (Baja Bean Co.) located at 9 West Beverley Street. Available for grab and go or dine in and served in 2017 Queen City Potter Party souvenir cups; while supplies last. 

Hagrid’s Hut

Do you hear the calling of the Runes? If so, you need to confer with Bathsheda, Professor of Study of Ancient Runes, at Hagrid’s Hut (Artful Gifts LLC)—located at 6 Byers Street. Professor Bathsheda will be available for consult during the Queen City Potter Party as well as by appointment throughout the year.

Honeydukes

Searching for a Confectionery Charm? Then Honeydukes is the place to go! Paris Cake Company located at 310 Kalorama Street will transfigure itself into Honeydukes, the legendary wizarding sweet shop, offering Mandrake Cupcakes, Butterbeer Cupcakes, Cauldron Cakes, Golden Snitch treats, a multitude of Enchanted Cookies, Bertie Botts Cupcakes, Chocolate Frogs and many more sweet delights.

The list of activities and businesses continues to grow. Get your daily update at Queen City Potter Party website.

Schedule (still TBA)

 

Here is just a sampling of what will be an amazing weekend of Harry Potter fun:

When you arrive on Saturday visit Headmaster Dumbledore and Professor McGonagoll as they will be signing “Acceptance Letters” for all incoming students and Dumbledore shall have “Graduation Certificates” for the Alumni.

Sorting Ceremonies will take place at various locations throughout the day.

Visit with strolling characters like our very own Professor Rubeus Hagrid. Equipped with his enchanted umbrella, he will be walking about meeting with Students, Parents and Alumi throughout the entire weekend.

The magic continues after the sun sets at the Queen City Potter Party Hogwarts Homecoming Celebration. The Queen City Fire Circus shall be performing on both Friday and Saturday night. The Flaming Arena will be located directly behind Gringotts (Suntrust Bank).

Take on the task of Horcrux Hunting when you download Traipse, an app that will help you find them all. We must destroy He Who Shall Not Be Named! Two levels are available: Muggle and Potter Prefects.

*Activities and events are still being added throughout the weekend. 

The Details

 

Appropriate for all ages, no admission fee required. Some activities will require a small participation fee.

Times and locations for activities will be available at the official Queen City Potter Party website and will be published in the QCPP Map which will be available electronically as well as in print in numerous locations throughout the weekend.