Posts Tagged ‘Bed and Breakfast’

Black History Month in Virginia

Friday, February 3rd, 2012

“The African-American experience is one of the most important threads in the American tapestry.”  –Bill Frist

When one thinks of the month of February, the first event that comes to mind is probably Valentine’s Day. However, February also possesses a celebration of much more historical and hereditary significance—it is Black History Month.

Virginia will be celebrating Black History Month with music, films, lectures, dramas, tours, and many more events and gatherings. So, while you’re enjoying a much-needed vacation at one of our B&Bs, why not celebrate the culture, traditions, and heritage of our African-American citizens?

Locomotion, February 28, 2012, Virginia Beach, VA- This theatrical production is written by Jacqueline Woodson and is based on her Coretta Scott King Honor book of the same title. It follows the story of Lonnie Collins Motion, his triumph over hardships, and his passion for writing. (Click here for inns near Virginia Beach).

Metropolitan Jazz Orchestra Presents Buddy, Woody, and Stan, February 25, 2012, Fairfax, VA- This musical event is a must-see for admirers of jazz classics. The program features renowned alto sax virtuoso Jim Carroll, the founder of the Met Jazz Orchestra. (Click here for inns near Fairfax.)

12th Annual Virginia Black History Month Formal Dinner, February 25, 2012, Fredericksburg, VA- The Keynote Speaker for this event is Hollywood actress and producer Vivica A. Fox. Enjoy a night of delicious food, wonderful speakers, lively dancing, and a number of other features of entertainment. (Click here for inns near Fredericksburg.)

Ezibu Muntu African Dance Group, February 18, 2012, Richmond, VA- Gather the kiddies, take them to the Children’s Museum of Richmond, and delight in a performance by this renowned African dance group. (Click here for inns near Richmond.)

Performing Arts Live Presents Ladysmith Black Mambazo, February 14, 2012, Winchester, VA- Make your Valentine’s Day special with a performance by this Grammy Award-winning, all-male, a capella group. (Click here for inns near Winchester.)

 

 

 

By Tara Stoll

Bed and Breakfast Babymoons in VA

Wednesday, January 25th, 2012

They say that pregnancy is beautiful, that the glow of an expectant mother is one of the most simplistic forms of natural beauty. Of course, “they” don’t take into consideration the morning sickness, the stretch marks, the mood swings, and the many other forms of nine-month-long discomfort. While pregnancy may be beautiful, it certainly can be stressful for both the mother and the father.

Don’t worry; there is a point to that seemingly irrelevant introduction. You may be asking yourself, “How does that relate to the Bed and Breakfast Association of Virginia?” I’m glad you asked. If you are an expecting couple in desperate need (or in not-so-desperate need) of a getaway, then reserve a few days for a babymoon at one of our BBAV inns.

Magnolia House Inn, Hampton, VA- Your babymoon at Magnolia House includes homemade desserts, a picnic with sparkling cider, a full breakfast, two nights’ accommodations, and a gift for your little one. (Add a massage to the Babymoon Package if you’re needing some muscle relaxation.)

South Court Inn Bed and Breakfast, Luray, VA- South Court Inn’s Babymoon Pakcage includes a one-hour, in-room massage for both the parents, a dozen roses, two lead crystal champagne flutes, a gourmet dinner for two, and decadent chocolates.

The Hummingbird Inn, Goshen, VA- Enjoy your time together before the baby arrives by spending an amazing two nights at the Hummingbird Inn. Delight in roses, chocolate-covered strawberries, sparkling cider (and wine for Dad), a massage for two, a carriage ride through Lexington, dinner at Bistro, and a special gift for your baby.

Chestnut Hill Bed and Breakfast, Orange, VA- Chestnut Hill’s add-on package consists of an aromatherapy facial massage for Mom, a deep tissue massage for Dad, chilled sparkling cider, and gourmet chocolates.

© Stuart Miles

By Tara Stoll

Valentine’s Day in VA, 2012

Tuesday, January 10th, 2012

Virginia is for lovers, right? Then Valentine’s Day is certain to be extra special for those romantic couples who choose a Virginia bed and breakfast for their holiday destination. Picture, if you will, a lavish suite, scarlet rose petals carefully strewn about the bed and crystalline glasses of champagne set atop the table. The room is bathed in the soft glow of candlelight, and further embellishment includes lusciously ripened strawberries with a shell of fine chocolate.

This little, fictional scenario can quickly become your reality. Quite a few BBAV inns offer Valentine’s Day packages or romantic getaway specials, and what significant other would not be thrilled to spend a few days away, engulfed in romantic relaxation?

Summerfield Inn, Abingdon, VA- “Treat your special sweetheart to a memorable Valentine’s break during the entire month of February.” This package includes a beautiful flower bouquet, decadent chocolates, and a delectable gourmet breakfast.

Cooper’s Landing Inn and Traveler’s Tavern, Clarksville, VA- This B&B offer a Valentine’s Day package through the whole of February. Treat your loved one to a one- or two-night stay, an in-room massage, a bouquet of long-stemmed roses, and a gourmet breakfast in bed.

Mark Addy Inn, Charlottesville, VA- Take advantage of this inn’s Valentines Sweetheart Getaway. Enjoy a candlelit dinner, gourmet chocolates, a gift basket with wine, and various other treats.

Corner Stone Farm, Clarksville, VA- Unwind with the rural romance of a two-night stay, cider and cheese, flowers, and chocolates. What better place is there than the country to relax with your special someone?

Holladay House, Orange, VA- All of the Holladay House’s Romance Packages are included in their Valentine’s Day special during the month of February. Stay for three nights at this bed and breakfast, and receive your third night at half price.

 

By Tara Stoll

12 Reasons to Visit Virginia in 2012

Tuesday, January 3rd, 2012

“The country is not mountanous not yet low but such pleasant plaine hils and fertile valleyes, one prettily crossing an other, and watered so conveniently with their sweete brookes and christall springs, as if art itself had devised them.” –Captain John Smith, “A Map of Virginia”

Why should you visit (or re-visit) Virginia? The reasons could quickly conglomerate into a great novel that would require hours of your time to read. Since neither you nor your humble blogger has the time to compose and study a novel of such great proportions, enjoy another of our increasingly well-loved BBAV lists.

12 Reasons to Visit Virginia in 2012:

  1. The historical sites. Virginia has Jamestown/Yorktown, Monticello, Montpelier, and a vast number of other sites that explore our rich history.
  2. The wineries, vineyards, and breweries.
  3. The amusement parks and theme parks.
  4. The state parks and hiking trails.
  5. The museums and exhibits.
  6. The theatres. (Did you know that Virginia boasts the only replica of Shakespeare’s Blackfriar Theatre? Yep, we do, and along that that theatre, there are many, many more scattered about the Commonwealth.)
  7. The scenic drives.
  8. The mountains.
  9. The family-friendly activities.
  10. The beaches.
  11. The shopping centers, malls, outlets, downtown boutiques, and locally-owned shops.
  12. The Bed and Breakfasts. What kind of association would we be if we didn’t highlight the wonderful businesses that comprise our organization? Virginia has some truly wonderful, individually unique bed and breakfasts, and no trip to and around Virginia would be complete without staying at one of them.

By Tara Stoll

BBAV Holiday Packages

Tuesday, December 13th, 2011

If you read our last BBAV blog entry, you know that we encourage you to shop and buy locally to acquire all of your holiday gifts. And did you realize that the Bed and Breakfast Association of Virginia is also a local business??? You could purchase a BBAV gift certificate if you would like, or you could partake in one of the holiday packages that some of our bed and breakfasts offer.

1. Serenity’s Edge!- The beautifully romantic cottages of Serenity’s Edge are located in Braxton, Virginia (near Roanoke). For a $35 add-on during the month of December, you can enjoy a Holiday Escape Package, which includes a holiday basket, cookies, assorted snacks, a keepsake collector’s ornament, and a CD of holiday music. Contact Serenity’s Edge for more information.

2. Belle Hearth B&B- Belle Hearth in Waynesboro, VA is another inn that offers a holiday package, which includes the following: “Reserve any room, anytime, for two nights and take 50% off the second night rate. Must mention this special when reserving by phone or online and cannot be combined with any other offer or special.”

3. South Court Inn Bed and Breakfast- This lovely inn offers a 3- or 4-day Fantastic Christmas Getaway and Dinners for $680. This includes a Christmas Even dinner, a Christmas Day lunch buffet, a Christmas present opening breakfast buffet, and a Christmas evening tea. Contact the South Court Inn for more information.

These are only two of the BBAV’s many inns, and there are many more offering holiday specials. If you would like to know if a bed and breakfast offers a special or package, check out our website, find an inn, and give them a call!

Photo by JJ Harrison

By Tara Stoll

Shopping Locally in Virginia

Tuesday, December 13th, 2011


There are many, many benefits to buying locally, especially during the holiday season, and Virginia has no shortage of small businesses from which it would be advantageous to make your purchases. Many of the art-related establishments such as 16 Hands in Floyd, VA, Sunspots Studios in Staunton, VA, and Glenfiddich Farm Pottery in Leesburg, VA even feature local artisans who display and sell their beautiful pieces of artwork.

It would take an abundance of time and energy to research every single small business in Virginia, not to mention that it would be a very long, increasingly dull blog entry. Thus, I would encourage you to do a google search for downtown shopping in Virginia, and I guarantee that you will find a vast amount of small, eclectic shops that will fulfill all of your gift-giving needs.

If you have read any of the BBAV’s previous blog entries, you know that I, your humble blogger, love a good list. Therefore, enjoy yet another list, this one presenting you with a few reasons as to why you should shop and buy locally:

1. Obviously, by buying locally, you are supporting your local economy which is an indirect benefit to yourself because of the re-circulation of money and all that jazz. See? It’s good for you!

2. Small, local businesses provide a wide range of unique holiday gifts. From jewelry to artwork to random trinkets, downtown shops offer any type of item that you can think of, and gifting someone with something unique is sure to make you the most celebrated gift-giver of them all.

3. You avoid the crabby crowds that infest big retail stores during this time of year. I mean, really, who wants their toes run over by cart-pushing grinches and line-cutting scrooges?

You know what? Those three reasons pretty much sum it all up, so Merry Christmas and Happy Shopping!

 

Photo by Patrick Neil

 

By Tara Stoll

BBAV Cookbook, 2011

Monday, December 5th, 2011


The name “bed and breakfast” conjures up many different mental images and most are related to cozy little getaways, luxurious rooms, and smiling innkeepers. But the one overlying image that almost immediately comes to everyone’s mind is the absolutely delicious food.

If you have ever wanted to re-create some of the decadent dishes that you have tried at a B&B, you’re in luck, because the Bed and Breakfast Association of Virginia has recently released a fantastic cookbook. From Apple Coffee Cake to Cheesy Potatoes, there are various recipes from each inn in the BBAV, instructing you on how to create desserts, main courses, holiday treats, and much, much more.

Each inn is also featured on a page with a brief description about their establishment, so besides being a wonderful culinary treasure, the cookbook serves as a quick guide to Virginia bed and breakfasts and their surrounding areas. As the BBAV website states, “This is not just a cookbook, but a travel companion. Each B & B is unique. Virginia offers historic Colonial homes, country manors, Victorian homes, old train depots, and former plantations. This book will help you discover a Virginia Bed & Breakfast that is perfect for you.”

One final aspect of this cookbook that makes it unique from all others is that many of the recipes are ones that are prepared in advance. Working at a B&B means that you must become an expert in time management, and preparing food ahead of time is often one way to do so. Thus, if you’re throwing a huge holiday party and you don’t have time to prepare food that day, check out our recipes and make them ahead of time!

(And don’t forget that this cookbook would make a wonderful Christmas gift!)

By Tara Stoll

BBAV Gift Certificates

Tuesday, November 22nd, 2011


The usual holiday gifts include such dull items as a tie for Dad, a scented candle for Mom, sets of lotion and bodywash for the girlfriends, and moderately pleasant aftershave for the boyfriends. While these are not necessarily bad gifts, they’re not particularly memorable and certainly not personalized enough to express how meaningful a relationship you have with these individuals.  (Although, if you’re not terribly fond of these acquaintances, a bodywash set might be appropriate.)

Instead of the usual generic gift sets, how about presenting your friends and family with Bed and Breakfast Association of Virginia gift certificate? You can buy them in $25 increments between the prices of $25 and $500. They are redeemable at any inn that is a current member of the BBAV. Yes, you’ve read that correctly. ANY INN!

Besides the fact that these gift certificates would make wonderful presents to the holidays, you might be wondering why else you should purchase one. I like a good list, so I’ve decided to present to you a list of three reasons why you should pick up a BBAV gift certificate:

1. You will undoubtedly be the most envied of all gift-givers at your holiday party.

2. You don’t have to fight the Black Friday crowds to buy your gift. In fact, you don’t have to fight any crowds, since the gift certificates are available for purchase online.

3. BBAV gift certificates have no expiration date. Much like that fruit cake that you’re thinking about giving the neighbors. But a BBAV gift certificate is much more appealing than fruit cake.

Photo by Kelvin Kay

By Tara Stoll

Giving Back for Thanksgiving in Virginia, 2011

Wednesday, November 16th, 2011

The word “Thanksgiving” has come to be synonymous with “turkey dinner.” The name of this holiday conjures images of a cozy family meal, a well-furnished table of food and autumn décor, and perhaps even a blazing fire in the hearth. But in all of the hustle and bustle of Thanksgiving preparations, the meaning becomes lost in the labor.

So focused are we on preparing that perfect, Norman Rockwell-worthy dinner that we often disregard those who are not fortunate enough to spend Thanksgiving with family, friends, and an overabundance of food. We are surrounded by the homeless, the hungry, and the lonely, and how much of an impact on their lives would it make to invite them to our Thanksgiving meals? I can see the skepticism on your faces, and unfortunately, most will label the notion of extending an invitation to strangers as little more than an interesting idea.

But you’re not off the hook yet, because there are many other ways to support the less fortunate during this holiday season. How about the Central Virginia Food Bank? Or the Foodbank of Southeastern Virginia? Or Feeding America: Southwest Virginia? One only has to do a quick Google search for “Virginia food banks” to see that there are so many establishments in the commonwealth in need of your assistance whether it be through donations of money or a few hours of your time.

And so, we here at the Bed and Breakfast Association of Virginia wish you all a wonderful Thanksgiving while encouraging you not only to appreciate all that you possess, but also to give back to the community in which you make your home.

The First Thanksgiving by Jean Leon Gerome Ferris

(This blog entry was inspired by a young boy named John, who decided that for this Thanksgiving, he was going to collect food for those in need. Thank you, John, for your kind-heartedness and your inspiration.)

By Tara Stoll

Veterans Day in Virginia, 2011

Monday, November 7th, 2011

 

November 11 is Veterans Day, Armistice Day, Remembrance Day, commemorating the end of World War I and honoring all the men and women of the armed forces.

Woodrow Wilson was the first to declare a November 11th celebration of Armistice Day, and he did so with the proclamation, “To us in America, the reflections of Armistice Day will be filled with solemn pride in the heroism of those who died in the country’s service and with gratitude for the victory, both because of the thing from which it has freed us and because of the opportunity it has given America to show her sympathy with peace and justice in the councils of the nations.”

 

Joseph Ambrose, 86-year old World War I veteran

There will be celebrations, free museum admissions, and military discounts all over the United States on Veterans Day, and Virginia will be no exception:

Mount Vernon, VA- free admission for active duty, former, and retired military personnel; free community concert by The Harmony Heritage Singers.

Grey Swan Inn, Blackstone, VA- 10% discount to military personnel

Montpelier, Orange, VA- free admission to all military personnel

Woodrow Wilson Presidential Library and Museum, Staunton, VA- free Veterans Day Program

Besides these specific events, there are a number of national parks that are offering free admission to everyone on Veterans Day:

  •     Colonial National Historical Park
  •     George Washington Memorial Parkway’s Great Falls Park
  •     Manassas National Battlefield Park

“As we express our gratitude, we must never forget that the highest appreciation is not to utter words, but to live by them.” –John F. Kennedy

By Tara Stoll