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Media & Press

We are always available to help members of the working press with site tours, press kits, press passes, and suggested itineraries.

Everything you need to begin your Staunton travel story is here. We know the inside story about what’s happening around town and can provide you with tips, sources, and anything else you might need.

We’re committed to connecting qualified journalists with quick and accurate information, additional resources, and photography.

Awards & Acclaim

Rankings & Awards:

2016

  • “The Top 28 Hot Destinations for 2016” – Travelsquire.com
  • “9 of the Best Small Towns for Food in the U.S.”  – Tasting Table
  • “20 Great Small Towns Near Washington, DC” – About.com
  • “12 Perfectly Picturesque Towns in Virginia” – OnlyinYourState.com
  • “The 6 Cutest Main Streets in America” – Purewow.com
  • “The 30 Small Towns You Should Visit This Summer” – Country Living
  • “The 30 Small Towns You Should Visit This Summer” – Cosmopolitan
  • “The 30 Small Towns You Should Visit This Summer” – MSN.com
  • “America’s Favorite Towns” – Travel+Leisure
  • “Best Main Streets in the USA” – USA Today

2015

  • Staunton tops the list of the “10 Most Beautiful Towns in Virginia!” – TheCultureTrip.com
  • The 15 Best Places To Live In Virginia…and Why – Staunton “Most Beautiful Town.” – OnlyinYourState.com

2014

  • America’s Best Main Streets – Fodors / Huffington Post
  • America’s Favorite Mountain Towns – Travel + Leisure
  • Top 10 Idyllic and Historic Main Streets Across the USA – USA Today
  • The Fall Foliage Bike Festival was selected as one of “America’s Best Fall Bike Rides” – US News & World Report

2013

  • Great Places in America – American Planning Association
  • America’s Greatest Main Streets – Travel + Leisure

2012

  • Best Small Towns in America – Smithsonian
  • Number One For Small Town Charm – AirTran’s Go magazine
  • Small Towns We Love – Southern Living

Acclaim:

  • “Staunton offers big-city vibrancy and culture. Its downtown district teems with independently-owned businesses, including a locavore restaurant scene that visitors are loath to leave behind.” – Virginia Living, 2012
  • “From its fresh dining options to its farm-centric tours, this Shenandoah Valley enclave is a must-visit destination for anyone who loves tasty food and scenic views.” – Flavor, 2012
  • “The American Shakespeare Center, located on a hilly side street of this college town…takes on the Bard and his classical _ contemporaries in a manner as charming and adaptive as Staunton itself.” – Washington Post, 2012
  • “The charming architecture, walkability, and lively cultural scene draw more and more people to Staunton.” – Preservation, 2012
  • “The burgeoning restaurant scene has a distinctly locavore focus.” – Washington Post, 2011
  • “Staunton has been restored to a high sheen of antique charm…” – Forbes, 2011
  • “Virginia’s Shenandoah Valley is for lovers of great food, live music and historic Americana. And its unofficial cultural capital, Staunton, may be the region’s best kept secret.” – Arrive magazine, 2010
  • “Downtown Staunton looks and feels charmingly old, yet it’s very much alive, with its own distinct Valley vibe.” – Virginia Living, 2010
  • “Staunton…one of the country’s best-kept foodie secrets.” – Baltimore magazine, 2010
  • “Staunton has reinvented itself as an arts and culture destination…” – Philadelphia Inquirer, 2009
  • “Staunton is emerging as a surprisingly hip getaway where hundreds of Victorian-era storefronts and buildings set the stage for a unique blend of world-class Shakespearean performances, music festivals, locally grown artisan foods, gourmet restaurants, art galleries, and, historical attractions.” – Richmond Times Dispatch, 2009
  • “Staunton is absolutely charming, with thriving arts and local-food scenes and an abiding sense of community.” – Southern Accents, 2009
  • “The Virginia town of Staunton has some big draws – including good food and terrific theater.” – Washingtonian magazine, 2009
  • “One of Virginia’s many handsome small cities, this hometown of President Woodrow Wilson is a back-from-the-dead success story that’ll make you smile.” – New York Post, 2009
  • “The narrow streets of Staunton…are full of handsome, 19th century buildings, enticing storefronts, and good restaurants.” – Wall Street Journal, 2006

Press Kit

Fast Facts:

  • Staunton is pronounced STANN’-tun.
  • Staunton was founded in 1747 and incorporated in 1871.
  • Few places in the nation can boast of a community heritage as rich, deep, and varied as that of Staunton and Augusta County. Augusta County (with Staunton as the county seat) once stretched to the Mississippi River.
  • The city’s population is approximately 24,000.

History, Arts & Culture:

  • Often called the “Queen City” of the Shenandoah Valley, Staunton boasts six separate historic districts.
  • A deep ethic of preservation, combined with an unusually strong cultural climate, has been cultivated in Staunton for decades.
  • Historic Staunton Foundation provides free, guided walking tours every Saturday morning from May through October.
  • Staunton’s rich history of arts and culture goes back to its days as a nineteenth-century rail junction and a center for travelers to stop over and enjoy opera, vaudeville, and rollicking nightlife. That tradition lives on today in Staunton’s arts and culture district, called the “Red Brick District.”
  • Live music festivals entertain all summer long – celebrating all kinds of music traditions, including jazz, Americana, blues, and classical.
  • The nationally acclaimed American Shakespeare Center offers top-notch performances year round. The 300-seat Blackfriars Playhouse is the world’s only re-creation of Shakespeare’s original indoor theatre.
  • The living-history Frontier Culture Museum offers an insider’s look at life in early America.
  • Staunton is the birthplace of the 28th U.S. President, Woodrow Wilson and the home of the Woodrow Wilson Presidential Library.
  • Mary Baldwin College, a women’s college that features a number of unique programs, including the Virginia Women’s Institute for Leadership and the Program for the Exceptionally Gifted, is located on the hilltops above downtown.

Food & Dining:

  • Staunton is located in the heart of the Shenandoah Valley and features a special emphasis on fresh cuisine emphasizing our rich agricultural heritage. Farm tours are available.
  • Staunton is the culinary epicenter for the agriculturally rich Shenandoah Valley. Tapping into this local food bounty are local chefs, from dining hotspots like Zynodoa and The Shack, who are putting Staunton on the “southern foodways” roadmap.
  • A fun selection of wine bars, coffee houses, vineyard tasting rooms and small-batch breweries round out the local flavor.
  • The Staunton/Augusta Farmer’s Market takes place in the Wharf district on Wednesday and Saturday mornings, from April through November.

Accommodations:

  • There are 670 lodging rooms located in the City of Staunton.
  • The Stonewall Jackson Hotel & Conference Center is one of the Historic Hotels of America (HHA.) HHA has identified 220 quality hotels that have maintained their historic architecture and ambience and the Stonewall Jackson Hotel & Conference Center is one of only eleven in Virginia.

Photo Gallery

We hope you enjoy looking at these photographs of our beautiful city. These images are intended for editorial use in newspapers, magazines, and other periodicals that promote Staunton. They may also be used to promote meetings and conventions taking place in the Staunton area.

If you are a member of the press or a travel industry professional, we invite you to download high-resolution images from our photo gallery. These images are provided free of charge. Please preserve photo credits as they appear.

Staunton’s Beverley Street
Photo Credit: Woods Pierce
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Nighttime Skyline
Photo Credit: Warren Faught
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Courthouse Dome at Dusk
Photo Credit: Woods Pierce
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Staunton City Skyline
Photo Credit: Jean Boyd
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Farm to Table Dining at Zynodoa
Photo Credit: Sera Petras
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American Shakespeare’s Center Blackfriar’s Playhouse “The Taming of the Shrew”
Photo Credit: Staunton Convention & Visitors Bureau
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Woodrow Wilson Presidential Library and Museum
Photo Credit: Staunton Convention & Visitors Bureau
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Sunspots Studios
Photo Credit: Staunton Convention & Visitors Bureau
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Staunton Music Festival
Photo Credit: Staunton Convention & Visitors Bureau
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Frontier Culture Museum
Photo Credit: Staunton Convention & Visitors Bureau
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Mary Baldwin College
Photo Credit: Staunton Convention & Visitors Bureau
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Gypsy Hill Park
Photo Credit: Staunton Convention & Visitors Bureau
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Film Industry Request

Staunton is often considered as a location for period films. Movies filmed on location in Staunton include Gods and Generals, Hearts in Atlantis, and Evan Almighty. Through the Governor’s Motion Picture Opportunity Fund, Virginia offers qualified production companies a range of incentives.

If you are interested in filming within the City of Staunton, please email Sheryl Wagner at WagnerSS@ci.staunton.va.us. You will be contacted within 48 hours regarding your request.

Fact Checking Service

The Staunton Convention and Visitors Bureau (CVB) is dedicated to making your job easier. We are happy to provide fact-checking services and background information for journalists on assignment. Our communications team is ready to help, and can offer an updated information database with unparalleled access to resources.

Please allow two-weeks for fact checking services; advance notice is appreciated.