Are you intrigued by Thomas Jefferson and his never quenched quest of knowledge? Then you might want to spend Sunday, September 15, 2019 at Peaks of Otter in Bedford County.
“Thomas Jefferson” and National Park Service rangers will guide guests to tour the scenic mountain peak of Sharp Top. Thomas Jefferson will provide his unique perspective on the cultural and natural histories the mountain holds. The tour, via shuttle bus, begins at 2:00 and will last about 2.5 hours. Space is limited therefore reservations are required 1.866.387.9905. A shuttle bus fee does apply, price to be determined later.
Following the tour you can extend your time at Peaks of Otter Lodge and join Thomas Jefferson for dinner at the lodge. Starting at about 5:00, Jack Gary, the Director of Archaeology at Colonial Williamsburg will speak about Jefferson’s 1815 hike of the Peaks of Otter to take measurements, his calculations and discovery. Following his lecture you will retire to the dining room to enjoy a special dinner. The menu includes:
- Peanut Soup
- Artisan Greens Salad
- Pan-fried Rainbow Trout with Parsnip-Carrot Puree and Fried Round Potatoes
- Coffee and Tea
The cost of the lecture and dinner is $73 per person plus taxes.
A conversation with Jefferson, tour, dinner and overnight stay package on the night of September 15, 2019 is available. The all-inclusive package is $315, plus applicable taxes, for 2 people. Reservations are required, as space is limited. Call 866.387.9905 for additional information and to book your tickets.
Mike and I will be joining the tour and will stay for dinner. We have never hiked to Sharp Top, and since it is an extensive hike the shuttle bus sounds good to me! We will hope to see you there.
On the night of Saturday, September 7, 2019 you can experience a unique opportunity at Poplar Forest. Dr. Neal Sumerlin, former Director of the Belk Astronomical Observatory at the Claytor Nature Study Center at the University of Lynchburg, will share his and Thomas Jefferson’s love of astronomy.
Spending the evening on the south lawn of Poplar Forest Dr. Sumerlin will showcase the night’s sky. Following a short presentation about Thomas Jefferson and his fascination with astronomy you will then study the moon, stars and planets in the early fall sky. If the weather cooperates you may be able to see:
- the first quarter moon, a little less than half illuminated
- Venus in a crescent phase
- Jupiter with its four largest moons visible
- Saturn with its rings tilted for great visibility and its largest moon Titan
- Mars, not long after its closest approach to Earth in several years
The Stargazing Event will take place between 7:30 until 9:00. Reservations are strongly recommended, as space is limited. Admission is $10.00 per person, for guests 12 years old and older. Tickets can be purchased online (www.poplarforest.org/events) or by calling the Museum Shop at 434.534.8120.
Poplar Forest is located at 1542 Bateman Ridge Road, Forest, VA. The main phone number is 434.525.1806.
Just across the James River from downtown Lynchburg, VA and it’s fountain, you will find James River Adventures. James River Adventures opened last summer in Riveredge Park. Offering guided or unguided paddling trips using canoes, kayaks, stand up paddleboards, tubes and now a replica of an 1800’s batteau they hope to share the beauty of the James River with locals and visitors. Open 9 until 6 every day, except Tuesdays and Wednesdays, during April through October they look forward to helping you learn about the river. Kayaks, canoes, paddleboards and tubes can be rented by the hour, if you don’t want to commit to a 3-6 hour trip.
Safety is a top priority. Every guest is provided with a lifejacket and is given basic instructions on how to use the equipment and navigate the waters. Shuttle service is offered to their customers. Each tour is different but may provide the opportunity to see eagles, turkeys, ospreys, various fish, otters, deer and beavers. The guided paddle tours provide one-on-one lessons from the James River’s historical, ecological and environmental perspectives.
Since this spring James River Adventures, in conjunction with Rise Up Climbing, is now offering rock climbing. Outdoor climbing classes or rock climbing sessions are offered throughout the week. Call for more information, 434.847.1090.
Riveredge Park is located at 150 Rocky Hill Road, Madison Heights. Detailed information can be found at www.jamesriveradventures.org. You can also book your adventure down the James River on line on their website.
Lynchburg Parks and Rec and the Lynchburg Museum System will once again present their annual Easter Egg Roll on the Lawn at Point of Honor. This year it is being held on Saturday, April 20, 2019 between 10:00 until 12:00.
The Easter Egg Roll is free and open to the public. Your children can take part in various egg rolls (arranged by age), have their picture taken with the Easter Bunny, listen to stories read by local celebrities, visit the petting zoo, have their faces painted, visit the jumpy castle, plat corn hole, learn a spring craft, enjoy the live music and have delicious treats from the food trucks.
Point of Honor is located at 112 Cabell Street. There is plenty of parking, please be aware of no parking signs and directions!
Lynchburg Virginia’s Parks and Recreation department is hosting it’s third annual Celebration of Lights in December 2018. Riverside Park will be lit with displays, snowflakes and various light features to honor and celebrate the season. This event is free and family-friendly. Between December 7 until December 31, 2018 the event will be open nightly between the hours of 5:00 until 9:00. Except on two special occasion nights this event is a drive-thru event.
There will be three special event nights during the Celebration. Friday, December 7, 2018 will be the grand opening. Members of the Parks and Recreation department will be on hand to welcome you and wish you holiday greetings as you begin your travel, via car, through Riverside Park. Friday, December 14, 2018 is Pedestrian Night. Pedestrian Night allows visitors to walk through Riverside Park to slowly take in the ambiance of the light displays. Thursday, December 20, 2018 presents a magical night of carriage rides throughout Riverside Park. The carriage rides are hosted by Lexington Carriage Company. You can enjoy a hot cup of cocoa while the horses do all of the work, pulling you through the park. **Please note: all carriage rides are offered on a first come, first served basis. It is advised you register in advance to ensure you get a seat! Rides cost $6.00 per person. Tickets are required. Tickets can be purchased on the Lynchburg Parks and Rec website www.lynchburgva.gov or at any of the community enters throughout Lynchburg.
Riverside Park is located 2238 Rivermont Avenue, Lynchburg, VA 24503. Check-in for the special event nights is located at the tennis courts. For more information visit www.lynchburgparksandrec.com/programs-and-activities/celebration-of-lights
Patrick Henry’s Red Hill is hosting the Bluegrass, Barbecue and Brew festival on Saturday, November 3, 2018, between 11:00 until 5:00. Located at 1497 Red Hill Road in Brookneal, Virginia you don’t want to miss the flavors and sounds of Southern Virginia. Combining the love of history with the love of music, barbecue, and Virginia craft beer the festival’s intention is to have festival attendees fall in love with Southern Virginia.
Music was the entertainment for the 18th century. Patrick Henry played the flute and fiddle, both of which can be seen in the museum at Red Hill. The featured bands at this year’s festival are Breaking Glass, Joe Mullins and the Radio Ramblers and Nothin’ Fancy.
During the 18th century raising hogs was easy. They would roam throughout the nearby woods so there was little to tend to. Farmers would smoke and cure the meat. You will have a choice of meats as your barbecue entree. All of the barbecue vendors are from South Central Virginia.
You will also be able to sample and purchase local beer and cider. While Patrick Henry was governor of Virginia he hired a Scotch brewer to make beer. Henry never served anything stronger at the Governor’s dining table.
Enjoy the museum, historic buildings and the grounds that Patrick Henry loved. Listen and dance to the music. Visit the local art and craft vendors, to start your holiday shopping. Fill yourself with delicious barbecue, beer or cider (but remember to do so responsibly.)
Tickets are either general admission or tasting tickets. The general admission ticket, $15.00, allows you access to the bands, food and craft vendors, admission to all of the historic buildings and the museum and grounds. Tasting tickets, $20.00, gives you all that the general admission ticket does along with your choice of a pub glass or a wine glass, for sampling.
Things to remember:
- Festival hours are 11:00 until 5:00. The music starts at 11:45 and the last pour is at 4:30.
- Bring your own chairs or blanket for seating to watch the Bluegrass performances.
- ID must be shown for all tasting ticket holders at the gate.
- Docents will be available throughout the historic site, buildings and grounds. Red Hill was Patrick Henry’s last home and is his burial place. Take the time to enjoy the seven historic buildings, his grave site and the beautiful grounds overlooking the Staunton River Valley.
For more information call 434.376.2044 or visit www.bluegrassbarbecuebrew.com
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