Top 6 Can’t-Miss Family Fun Activities for Spring

The redbuds are blooming, and spring is bursting with opportunities to celebrate the season. Our top six family fun offerings will have the young and young at heart in your life exploring the outdoors, cheering to musicals, and safely meeting the region’s wildlife. Not to be forgotten, we’ve included fur-ball friendly adventures for man’s best friend, plus spring-themed beverages for adults along for the ride. Don’t miss these gorgeous days of mountain air filled with small town charm.

Alice in Wonderland the Musical–April 13 & 14

Head down the rabbit hole with zany characters, mad tea parties, and flamingo croquet in this new musical version of the timeless classic Alice in Wonderland. The ever-curious Alice, the White Rabbit, tap-dancing playing cards, the Mad Hatter, the mysterious Cheshire Cat, the Queen of Hearts, and all your favorites from Lewis Carroll’s beloved books take the stage to make this a magical, tuneful, and over-the-top entertaining musical for the whole family.

Alice in Wonderland will be presented by the Wayne Theatre with a student cast in two shows on Saturday, April 13, at 7 p.m., and on Sunday, April 14, at 3 p.m. Tickets to the musical are $5 for students and $12 for adults.

Hoppy Easter Extravaganza–April 14

It’s a Hoppy Easter at Stable Craft Brewing this year, as fun-filled family celebrations are topped off with a Jelly Bean IPA for parents. Doors open at noon, with all-afternoon festivities including Easter Egg Decorating (3-6pm), live music from (1-4pm), Easter themed races and prizes, a chance to meet the horses, and S’mores and Sunsets from 4pm till closing.

With a full tap room, a pub-style restaurant, and on-farm stables, Stable Craft Brewing offers a scenic and authentic setting to explore hops fields and to peek inside the on-site brewing process. Hoppy Easter, all!

Parkway Discovery–Starting April 26

 

 

 

 

 

The vistas from the Blue Ridge Parkway never fail to wow drivers, but young explorers in the backseat sometimes miss out on the experience. On April 26, the Humpback Rocks Visitor Center (milepost 5.8) will open for the season, offering kids the chance to explore a mountain farm and pick up a Junior Ranger packet to earn an official BRP patch. Within minutes of the visitor center, short but rewarding hikes welcome families–like Greenstone Trail (with unique geology), Ravens Roost (with cool rocks for climbing), and Catoctin Trail (with a thrilling view at the end). Make your enjoyment of this scenic byway a family affair!

Mutts Gone Nuts–April 26

Disorderly duo Scott and Joan Houghton and their hilarious pack of pooches have created a comedy dog thrill show like no other. Expect the unexpected in this top-notch presentation that includes high flying frisbee dogs, tightwire dogs, dancing dogs, magic dogs and of course, the one and only Sammie the Talking Dog. All nine canine partners are adopted from animal shelters and rescues. Have your photo taken with up to two of the dogs after the show, with a $10 donation to the Augusta Regional SPCA.

 Mutts Gone Nuts comes to the Wayne Theatre for one show on Friday, April 26, at 7 p.m. Tickets start at $18.

Riverfest–May 4

Riverfest, Saturday Apri. 30, 2015. (Photo by Norm Shafer).

Canoe rides, Stream Safari, Reptile World shows, life animal presentations from the Virginia Wildlife Center, Fish and Fun Rodeo, electro-fishing with the Department of Game and Inland Fisheries, and child-focused arts and crafts are just the beginning of the all day family fun unfolding at this year’s Riverfest.

Programs and activities start at 10am and continue throughout the day until 4pm. This FREE annual event takes place river-side at Constitution Park South in Waynesboro and is capped off by the Great South River Duck Race.

Petpawlooza–May 5

Celebrate your family’s furriest members in this afternoon event, or choose to grow your family’s fun with on-site pet adoption and rescue agencies. The Marvelous Mutt Stunt Show will air in Coyner Springs Park (home to Waynesboro’s Dog Park) at 12:15, 1:45, and 3:15pm on Sunday May 5th, plus join in for the Musical Sits Pet Contest, meet the Kissable Pits, and commission pet caricatures and balloon animals. Bring your leases, all your pets are invited to Petpawlooza.

 

 

 

 

Don’t Miss These Bucket List Views: Breathtaking Vistas for the Young and the Young at Heart

Where the Skyline Drive meets the Blue Ridge Parkway lies basecamp: an outdoor trail town ready to launch unforgettable adventures, with memories for years to come. You won’t want to miss any of these Bucket List Views, which range from the curbside-accessible to all-day mountain adventure, all a short drive from Waynesboro, Virginia.

Spy Rock: 360 Degrees of Grandeur

Described by some as “the best viewpoint in the central Blue Ridge” Spy Rock offers a fully panoramic view including the neighboring mountain summits of the Priest and the Three Ridges. At nearly 4,000 feet of elevation, visitors will breath fresh mountain air while “standing on top of the world.”

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The Oldest Rocks, the Deepest History: Five Reasons to Visit Virginia’s Historic Blue Ridge Mountains

The ancient Blue Ridge Mountains shelter not only millions of years of species diversity, but also tell a compelling story of native and early European settler history. Their rolling hills, shaded forests, and granite peaks invite visitors to experience history in a hands-on way, providing the perfect combination of education and exploration in this uniquely accessible mountain setting. We’re sharing five reasons to make the Blue Ridge Mountains your next geographic and cultural history adventure.

1. The Blue Ridge Mountains are the oldest in the hemisphere, and nearly the world.

Sculpting the soft curves and inviting slopes of the Blue Ridge Mountains was no overnight trick of nature’s magic. Creating an ecosystem so diverse, ancient, and enchanting was a nearly billion year endeavor, and today’s Blue Ridges are the final testaments to mountains that once soared as high as any other in their day. Created by uplifting action from to the collisions of Earth’s tectonic plates, the Blue Ridge Mountains are second in age only to South Africa’s Barberton greenstone belt. While they may be smaller, this grandmother of a mountain range is many times the age of either the Rockies or the Himalayas, both mere geological upstarts in comparison. The Blue Ridge Mountains are living proof to the old adage, “it takes a long time to make something that looks this good.”

2. Explore the rich history of Native American settlements

While many children learn in school about the eastern Virginia Powhatan, in the mountain regions to the west dwelled the Siouan Indians of the Monacan and Mannahoac tribes, living in a confederation that stretched from the James River fall line in Richmond to the Blue Ridge. In these mountains, they grew the “Three Sisters” (corn, beans, and squash) along with fruit orchards, grapes, and nuts. Today, visitors can participate in a Monacan Indian living history exhibit at Natural Bridge State Park where they can learn about traditional cooking, tool production, pottery, basket weaving, gardening, and shelter construction.

Photo from the Virginia Department of Conservation https://www.flickr.com/photos/vadcr/27389921650/in/album-72157669233431052/

3. Visit the “Museum of the Managed American Countryside.”

The National Park Service calls the Blue Ridge Parkway the “museum of the managed American countryside” due to its easily accessible driving tour of historic sites such as the rough-hewn log cabins of mountain pioneers and the visible traces of early logging, railway, and canal industries. From the Humpback Rocks Visitors Center just south of Waynesboro, parkway travelers can walk through the Mountain Farm Trail to explore early settler life in the mountains, with log cabins collected from the surrounding region for easy viewing. During the summer, the log cabins are both open and staffed with historic educators.

Photo from https://blog.virginia.org/2016/08/blue-ridge-parkway-hikes-virginia/

4. Plumb the Depths of Ancient Geology

“Where History Runs Deep” is the apt and inspiring motto for Grand Caverns, a national natural landmark in Grottoes, Virginia. Formed from underground water action in the region’s limestone rock, Grand Caverns claims to be America’s oldest show cave, in operation since 1806. Visitors can stroll through high ceilings and open caverns in their classic tour, or sign up for an “Adventure Tour” through Fountain Cave. Fountain Cave was recently reopened to the public after almost 100 years, and visitors will be treated to a true caving experience that includes no interior lighting, a once-used rugged 1800s pathway, and a full outfitting of helmets, knee pads, and caving gloves. For those seeking a better lit encounter with geologic history, a hiking trail, swimming pool, miniature golf course, and picnic area provide family-friendly complements to the full caving experience.

Photo from https://www.facebook.com/Grand-Caverns-118751574853602/

5. Mile-by-Mile Driving Destinations, for Every Variety of Historic Adventure

The Blue Ridge Parkway offers nearly 500 miles of unfolding adventure, from waterfall walks to roadside historic interpretive signs. This Milepost Guide offers a turn-by-turn description of the cabin getaways, living history exhibits, sweeping vista overlooks, and roadside geologies of the Blue Ridge Parkway. Whether sticking to the Parkway or exploring the small towns and historic destinations in the mountain foothills, the road may be winding but it is never less than breathtaking, historic, and adventure filled.

4 Blue Ridge Brunches: The Perfect Pairing to Your Springtime Weekends

Each year, May brings the annual search for the perfect brunch. Warm days invite late morning lounging, families gather for Mothers Day, and weekend drives in the country remain incomplete without a favorite meal and relaxation stop. We’ve compiled the four best places that serve up a seasonal brunch of laughter, friendship, and amazing food.

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Two-Wheeled Touring Near Waynesboro – Bicycle and Motorcycle Itineraries

Sometimes the ride is as exhilarating and beautiful as any destination. If you’re looking for sweeping turns, windswept mountain vistas, or country roads to cruise, these bicycle and motorcycle itineraries are sure to inspire.

Pedaling on Pavement

Day Trip Tours from Waynesboro are plentiful. Beginners and family-friendly options include the South River Greenway, stretching from Constitution Park and meandering along the South River, which on Saturday mornings features the Waynesboro Farmers Market. Or stretch a little further with the 12.5 mile Waynesboro-to-Dooms Day Loop, which takes you along the South River as it flows north towards its confluence with the North River. Intermediate riders may love the Waynesboro-to-Grottoes Loop which, over the course of 35 miles, can include a tour of Grand Caverns in the town of Grottoes and passes the renowned horticulturalist André Viette’s extensive perennial garden and nursery on Long Meadow Road.  Don’t be shy about exploring other options, as Bike the Valley’s database of On Road rides remains extensive.

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Taste Bud Tempting Food & Brews to Power Your Next Outdoor Adventure

Outdoor adventures are fueled by more than good cheer: Great food and delicious hydration all contribute to the perfect day in the woods. From mountain treks to parkway picnics, we’ve paired the flavor of local food with the taste of adventure for every style of outdoor recreation.

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Waynesboro,VA: An Inspiring Playground for All Ages

School may be out, but recess is in!  If you’re an outdoor lover, there’s no better place to spend your summer than in Waynesboro, Virginia.  We’ve got the peaks, the valleys, the water, and all the good nature your body and spirit crave.  Can’t decide where to start?  Check out these summer events you won’t want to miss, then pack those hiking boots, bike helmets, or racing shoes and escape to the Blue Ridge Mountains for an adventure-filled getaway!

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