The High-Octane Life in the Blue Ridge Mountains

Waynesboro, Virginia, is renowned for an abundance of high-octane thrills, with mountain biking and rock climbing often highlighted. A spirited heritage runs deep in these Blue Ridge and Allegheny Mountains, and an exploration into the region’s rich lore and mystique is itself an adventure!


These Spirited Mountains

Photo credit: Blue Ridge Institute & Museum of Ferrum College

“Mash,” “granny fee,” “singlings,” “mountain dew,” and “a bootleg turn”… the language, mystique, and modern media portrayals of Blue Ridge moonshining have created quite a body of lore.

For the real scoop on the history and culture of untaxed liquor in the mountains of Virginia, there’s no better resource than the Blue Ridge Institute & Museum’s online exhibition, “Moonshine – Blue Ridge Style.

Settlers to the Allegheny and Blue Ridge Mountains in the 1700s brought their traditions with them, including distilling grains into whiskey and fruit into brandy and using the leftover “slop” from the process for livestock feed. The United States government first began taxing alcohol to help pay for the Revolutionary War. Those distillers who chose not to get a license nor pay tax on their whiskey became known as “bootleggers” and “moonshiners.

Photo credit: Blue Ridge Institute & Museum of Ferrum College

When Virginia banned alcohol in 1914, the demand for moonshine only increased, and previously licensed distillers and bootleggers alike found illegal, but highly creative means to continue to produce and deliver their liquor.

For firsthand accounts and tall tales of moonshine’s role in mountain life, search the online issues of “The Mountain Laurel – The Journal of Mountain Life.” From “medicinal uses” and working a still before school to a story about a gorilla protecting the still of one moonshiner, this collection is a treasure trove of memories and stories!

Continue reading “The High-Octane Life in the Blue Ridge Mountains”

Live Like a Local: Best Burger Joints in the ‘Boro

If a mouth-watering burger is what you’re hankering for, look no further than Waynesboro!

Jake’s Bar & Grill, 137 N. Wayne Avenue

Tumbleweed Burger at Jake's
Tumbleweed Burger at Jake’s

Jake’s is a welcoming watering hole with a cozy, western flair, serving 100% all natural, locally raised, USDA ground beef burgers. Try their award-willing Tumbleweed Burger, featuring a beef patty topped with breaded jalapeño nuggets, cream cheese, apple jelly, and crunchy fried onion strips served on a glossy brioche roll. Once you’ve tasted it, you’ll know why it swept all three categories at the Staunton-Augusta Regional Chamber of Commerce Burger Cookoff.  Jake’s also won the attention of Scoutology as being among the best burger joints in the state!

Also try the Sagebrush, a beef patty smothered in grilled onions, peppers, and mushrooms with melted Swiss and homemade Coyote sauce.

Heritage on Main, 309 W. Main Street Continue reading “Live Like a Local: Best Burger Joints in the ‘Boro”

48 Hrs. of Blue Ridge Extreme Sports & Epic #WaynesboroVA Watering Holes

Design Your Own Adventure: Hike, Bike, Paddle, Climb, Crawl 

If you are an extreme sports enthusiast, there is no better place to test your strength, endurance and adventurous spirit than the mountains, rapids and cliffs near the Blue Ridge Parkway.  Whether you come fully equipped to head out on your own, or you need a guide or outfitter, make Waynesboro, Virginia, the base camp for your next outdoor getaway.

Pick two of the following high-octane adventures. Paired with our suggested watering holes, you’ll have 48 hours of spectacular sights, tastes, sounds, and memories. Continue reading “48 Hrs. of Blue Ridge Extreme Sports & Epic #WaynesboroVA Watering Holes”

“Drinking In” Waynesboro

Photos of beer from Shenandoah Valley Brewing Co. for the Shenandoah Beerwerks Trail. Photo by Pat Jarrett
Photo by Pat Jarrett

In the shadow of the Blue Ridge Mountains and Shenandoah National Park, three craft breweries— Basic City, Seven Arrows, and Stable Craft—grace Waynesboro and Augusta County. Each is a unique experience, showcasing the area’s history, hospitality, and horses. In common, they love all things local.

Basic City Beer Co. occupies the former brass foundry of Virginia Metalcrafters in what was once Basic City before it was annexed by Waynesboro. A trendy industrial space plus the effort to revitalize it equals something absolutely perfect for millennials and baby boomers alike. The brewery opened its doors in 2016, with long-term plans for the warehouse to include a restaurant, farmers’ market, artisan space, and more, making it an exciting destination business for the area. Continue reading ““Drinking In” Waynesboro”