Spring is here and summer is just around the corner. Whether one is into wine, dog, strawberry festivals or just hiking a mountain path, it is time to hit the road and visit the beautiful Blue Ridge Mountains and the Piedmont and Shenandoah Valleys.
Being a local, the owner of Go Blue Ridge Travel, Nancy Craun is well aware that spring not only signals the coming of the blooms but also the itch to get out and explore the beautiful mountains and valleys here in Virginia and West Virginia.
“It is the burst of the cherry and apple blossoms and the smell of the strawberries that gets the locales outdoors sprucing up their lawns and putting the convertible roof down for a drive in the mountains and valleys that we call home,” said Nancy Craun.
Spring kicks off the many festivals that last until the end of October. There is the traditional celebration of the crops such as the 88-year-old Shenandoah Apple Blossom Festival the first of May. This eventl has grown from a two day to a ten-day 42-event celebration.
At the same time if one is not into crowds and have a beloved a fur baby companion, then on May 2 and 3rd the farm goes to the dogs at Great Country Farms Dog Days Bloom. Enjoy the play area and a wagon ride to see the orchards and farm in bloom. There is an impressive dog agility course with new obstacles from Sit Stay Training, Doggie Olympic Games, and demonstrations that will keep tails a-waggin’! Bring one’s retriever’s favorite item to enjoy a dip in the pond. The first hundred pups to visit the farm each day will receive a doggie bag of goodies.
Agriculture has always been the economic foundation of the valley. As years have passed, an increased population of homes has swallowed up many apple and peach orchards but the agriculture industry has not left the valley. Today as part of the state of Virginia’s wine initiative, this area is a center for over 300 plus vineyards. I thought it might be interesting to look at one of the oldest as well as a new wine happeing. Wine, beer, and music festivals run from the end of April to late Fall.
Virginia Wine and Craft in Front Royal, Virginia on Saturday, May 16th – The Virginia Wine and Craft Festival is a great day trip to the Blue Ridge Mountains and the Shenandoah Valley. The event opens at 10 am and closes at 6 pm. The festival takes over the historic downtown Front Royal area with musical entertainment and over 20 Virginia vineyards covering seven blocks.
Wine and Trotter is on June 6th at the Shenandoah County Fairgrounds in Woodstock, Virginia. Just off of Interstate 81, an easy one-hour plus road trip from the metropolitan DC area, the Wine and Trotter Festival will offer the only Harness Racing and Wine event in Virginia. This is a small festival that is growing each year. Those attending will find this part of the valley offers vacation home rentals as well as leading hotels and bed and breakfasts near by.
A short distance from Woodstock is Bryce Resort, which offers a stunning mountain retreat weekend getaway far from the hustle and bustle of city life. While the slopes may have been shut down for the season the resort continues to offer a larger variety of activities such as golf, zipline adventures, lake beach and boating, hiking mountain trails, rock climbing walls, and a 340 foot mountain tubing.
Spring is the time to enjoy the dogwoods, azaleas and rhododendrons with a road trip to the Shenandoah Valley. Enjoy the wine and relax and listen to local music artists at these wine festivals. A hike is just a few miles away in the Blue Ridge Mountains.
Visit the Shenandoah Valley in 2015. Explore great road trips for kids. Learn More about hot happenings in the Valley –