Archive for the ‘Entertainment’ Category

NOW IS THE PERFECT TIME TO PLAN YOUR SUMMER VACATION IN CAPE CHARLES, VIRGINIA

Friday, February 22nd, 2019

As I write this post, cold rain is sloshing down here on Virginia’s Eastern Shore but almost everywhere else on the East Coast, folks are digging out from under another miserable storm, with yet another avalanche of snow and ice. Brrrr… So what that says to me is that it’s time to turn to more pleasant thoughts …. like planning a beach vacation ! Nothing like dreams of summer fun, of toes wiggling in the sand and sea breezes cooling the brow to push away the reality of winter blues. ( Did the groundhog see his shadow? How many more weeks to go ? )

And if you’re looking for a weekly vacation rental which offers both a relaxed and quiet atmosphere paired with lots to do, might I suggest Cape Charles, VA as a great destination. Coastal traditions, historic towns and tiny villages to explore, soft sandy beaches to relax on, off-shore Barrier Islands to visit, broad saltwater inlets to boat and kayak,  fabulous fishing and crabbing, artist’s studios and antique shops to visit,  seafood restaurants to sample, Palmer and Nicklaus golf to take a swing at– from A for Art Galleries to Z for Zesty clam dip, there is so much to do.  Or… just laz around on the deck,  book in hand, a  iced tea or cold glass of Chardonnay waiting close by,  letting the tension just slip away like an outgoing tide.  That is the promise of a Simply Relaxing Vacation on Virginia’s Eastern Shore because Virginia’s Eastern Shore is not just a place, it’s a relaxed coastal state of mind !

Which brings us to the list of  the 9 terrific vacation homes offered this year for weekly vacation rental through Blue Heron Vacation Rentals   ( Use this link to email them your desired dates and the house you are most interested in at easternshorevacationtime@gmail.com   .  Or call them at 757-678-5277 )   Though the homes vary by size and price, each has a distinctive personality–  historic, waterfront, beachfront, in-town, in the country.  From a ” 1 bedroom cozy nest for two”  through ” 5 bedrooms, sleeps 14″,   there is something for everybody.  ( And a couple are even for sale,  so if you fall in love with it, it could be yours for life !! How cool is that ? 

“SEA GATE”-Ca. 1912 Charm. 1 Block to Beach. Sleeps 14. Equipped Rec. Room.

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“BayPlace”-Exquisite Historic Home, 7 Bdrms, Sleeps 18 ,Comfy Furnishings, Fully Equipped Kitchen.

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Historic “Peach Retreat” Sparkles Like New! Great Location. Pets Considered.     

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SEASHELL COTTAGE” -Enjoy Your Vacation With Only Steps To The Soft Sand Cape Charles Beach. 

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“BayView Cottage”- West Indies Style Home; Community Beach & Pool; Waterfront Dining Nearby.

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“SEAHORSE RETREAT”, Only 1 Block From The Beach, A Sweet Beachy Vacation Nest For 2 Or 4 In Quaint Cape Charles.

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“Dolphins’ Doorway” 3 Bedrooms, 3 1/2 Bath With A Backyard Beach!

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Bayfront Breezes”- Charming Bayfront Home, Spectacular Sunsets Over the Water, Beach Access.

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“SANDY HARBOR COTTAGE” A Waterfront Vacation Home With Beach Access On Virginia’s Eastern Shore Offering Both Beach and Boat Dock.

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Pick Up Some Holiday Vibe ! Two More Chances To Experience A “Festive Friday” Evening In Cape Charles This Holiday Season !

Monday, December 17th, 2018

DSC_3778If you haven’t been to Cape Charles on a Friday night this holiday season, happily, you still have two more opportunities to enjoy the fun during the 5th Annual Festive Friday evening celebrations in the historic downtown area. Strolling down Mason Avenue will give you a Close Encounter of the Best Kind with Santa and Mrs. Claus. You can find them relaxing in front of their Cape Charles “vacation home” at Strawberry Street Station, a respite from their busy North Pole primary residence at the Toy Factory. Nearby, a ballooning project will be happening, myriad shapes and colors magically fashioned for delighted boys and girls. Last Friday at the Candy store, busy kids gathered around a table of colorful icings to decorate their gingerbread men, a tasty task. Across the way at Lemon Tree Gallery, the Boot Scootin’ Belles were bursting with energy and ready to go, those boots were made for dancing and dance they did ! Out front, a magician made one tiny foam rabbit turn into about 8 tiny rabbits right in my own chilly hand- – amazing, still can’t imagine how he did it !

So many things to see and do for kids and adults alike. Beautiful and cheery shop windows along Mason Avenue and down Strawberry Street, dressed to the nines for the holidays, beckon to smilingly folks strolling past. Lively songs by Christmas carolers, horse drawn carriage rides, clever street performers, candlelight story reading by Mrs. Claus at the Library, free holiday movies – – always something to delight everyone. Many of the shops feature live music to entertain customers who clearly love it all.

Festive Friday is the perfect opportunity to get your holiday spirit on and shop for your Special Someones. Check out the new jewelry at Moonrise, find a unique piece of art at the Lemon Tree or Ellen Moore Gallery, relax over a scrumptious gourmet dinner at Hook Up, warm up with a steaming cup of hot chocolate at the popular Cape Charles Coffee House, indulge in a hot read plus hot coffee at the newly-opened Peach Street Books, explore international gifts at Voiajer, browse the new inventory at Periwinkle’s. Try sampling the wonderful flavors of sweet balsamic vinegars at Drizzles or head down Gull Hummock’s way to select your New Year’s Eve champagne. Take some time to drop in for info on new listings from Blue Heron Realty or browse the gift shop at the gorgeously renovated Northampton Hotel. This and so much more awaits you each Friday night until Christmas !

It’s so, so easy to get into the swing of things and pick up some holiday vibe. On Friday, December 14th or 21st, just grab your whole group and head on out to one of the Eastern Shore’s best holiday events, Festive Friday in historic downtown Cape Charles. Get ready to discover the old-fashioned fun of a small town coastal Christmas . You’ll have a great time, guaranteed !

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Eastern Shore Virginia’s 2018 Fall Trail Ride

Tuesday, November 13th, 2018

DSC_2944Keep Calm and Ride Horses was the masterplan for the October 6th weekend when the attendees of the Eastern Shore of Virginia’s Fall Trail Ride arrived on scene. Rescheduled from late last month because of weather, this time around it went off without a hitch. Within moments of arrival, riders turned into busy bees- – unpacking and setting up their campsites, lighting fire pits, chatting with friends, meeting new corral neighbors, walking dogs. Some saddled up for a quick jaunt before dark but most concentrated on feeding, grooming and getting their horses comfortable and settled in after what had been, for many, a long trailer trip to get to the Shore. ( Although many arrived in what I think of as very comfy “horse mansions” on wheels. )

Several of the folks we met had driven down from Delaware and Maryland, including one rider who said her horse Andy was “ just the best” and he had inspired her to buy a little farm. Bouncy little dog Ember’s owner indicated that this was the 8th Ride she had attended and had come to love the Shore just from participating. A lady who hails from nearby Greenbackville, busy feeding some treats to her gorgeous white and chestnut mare, mentioned that she had started attending the precursor to today’s Ride way back when, nearly 30 years ago. Nearby, a group of moms and daughters played cards while their horses munched contentedly just a few feet away. Everywhere, a spirit of calm and happy relaxation reigned.

Saturday is the big day, lots of excitement as riders set off early for a nearly full day excursion. It’s a great opportunity to soak up the Shore’s relaxed coastal ambiance, exploring winding trails through farm fields, into woodlands bordering large waterfront farms, past little freshwater ponds, across roads and over dams, and out onto beaches bordering the Chesapeake Bay, splashing enthusiastically across sand flats, through saltwater shallows. Saturday evening the Station 16 Northampton Fire & Rescue Company, the event sponsor, hosts a big BBQ to celebrate the exciting day, after which most riders are ready to relax by the fire, pleasantly tired, drowsing off to the sweet night music of owls calling from nearby woods and horses nickering softly under the moonlit sky.

 

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WINDOW SHOPPING ON A SERENE CAPE CHARLES SUMMER EVE

Tuesday, October 9th, 2018

DSC_1268I long for more calm summer nights, more peaceful and quiet moments, more serene memories. Does anything feel more gentle or tranquil than a balmy summer’s evening outdoors, touched by soft salty breezes carrying sounds of murmured conversation and light laughter ? On an evening like that I love to window shop in Cape Charles. Everything closed, including late lingerers at the Brown Dog Ice Cream Shop shop, lights already dimmed, just a few folks out on Mason Avenue, strolling leisurely, holding hands, walking dogs or shepherding children. A couple cars driving to Kelly’s Pub, a few heading back to the hotels from The Shanty, a golf cart headed for the beach loop around Bay Avenue, one or two people at the LOVE sign, taking photos in the fading twilight, a murmuring couple sitting side by side in the sand, savoring the last moments of sunset. Otherwise, all quiet on the Western front. And in that peaceful instant, in that tiny sliver of time between the end of a busy day and the hush of nightfall, you’ll find the perfect time to window shop in Cape Charles.

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CRUSH FRIDAYS ON C-PIER DOWN AT THE OYSTER FARM MARINA

Wednesday, August 22nd, 2018

DSC_1896When it’s Friday and you’re feeling really, really Friday-ish, completely ready to kick off the shoes and let down the hair, try heading over to the Oyster Farm Marina on King’s Creek in Cape Charles. Because from 4 to 9pm on summer and fall Fridays, the best band-beer-boat ambience on the Eastern Shore can be found out on C- Pier at the Oyster Farm Marina. Sort of an Ahoy Matey, Hail Guys and Gals Well Met, Challenge You To A Game of Cornhole, TGIF The Shore Way kind of thing ! Plus steamed clams, oysters, shrimp and more ! Ride your bike, take your golf cart or, if needs must, your car. Just be prepared to have a whale of a good time. Because that’s what it’s all about out on C-Pier, meeting up with family and friends, listening to some beats, watching the boats glide by, enjoying the cool salty breezes, just having a great time !

P.S. Now, if you catch that “Friday feeling” on a Saturday, Oyster Farm has the cure ! This year, Crush Friday and Saturday down at C-Pier !

 

The Sky Was Blue And Hearts Were Sunny For The Annual Shuck and Suck Oyster Festival…

Monday, August 20th, 2018

DSC_2631The Shuck and Suck Oyster Festival on Virginia’s Eastern Shore has something for everyone, landlubbers and mariners alike. On the land side, the Shriner’s Parade is the big attraction. Shriners are known for mixing fun with good works, a laudable life balance and last Saturday morning they delighted kids and adults alike at the annual Shriner’s Parade down Mason Avenue in Cape Charles, a big part of this colorful Festival. Led by the color guard from the USCG station, followed by Mayor Smitty Dize and local Fire Department vehicles ( including the impressive tanker truck aptly named “Big Water” ), the Shriners brought a sense of joy and lightheartedness to a beautiful breezy summer morning. The little cars and little trucks are personal favorites, the incongruity of seeing these great big guys zooming around in these teeney, tiny vehicles absolutely tickles my funny bone.

 

DSC_2613Of course, the cause they are marching to raise awareness of is deadly serious. The Shriner’s mission is to support the 22 Shriner’s Hospitals which sponsor cutting edge research and offer innovative medical care to children suffering from acute burns, serious orthopedic problems, lip and cleft palate and spinal injuries. For children in need, it’s provided absolutely free of charge. So it was great to see them in Town again Saturday, their own Color Guard, the clowns, the tall pirate ship, the HeeHaw gang, antique cars, motorcycle contingent and of course the big guys driving the tiny cars and tractor trailers, all parading down Bay and Mason Avenues to the applause of the crowds gathered along the route to cheer them on.

 

 

Although the Parade is a big part of the Annual Shuck and Suck Oyster Festival, over at Oyster Farm Marina, the Smith Island Skiff races featuring tiny skiffs racing at amazing speeds along a difficult course in King’s Creek, the Annual Boat Docking contest, Oyster and Clam Eating Contests, numerous bands, fireworks are huge favorites and generate lots of excitement each year. So if you missed it this year, mark it on your August calendar for next, loads of fun to be had for all.

 

 

 

 

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The 1st Annual Honey Fest At Quail Cove Farms

Monday, July 16th, 2018

IMG_1320Lots of rhythm-keeping, toe-tapping and goody-munching happening over at Quail Cove Farms in Machipongo last Saturday at its 1st Annual Honey Fest. As the talented Side Porch Pickers picked away, wowing the crowd with bluegrass favorites, folks circulated up and down Quail Cove’s attractive new porch, checking out all the goings-on. Plenty of goodies were on offer including lovely little tea & honey flavored Parisian-style macaroons, honey butter, honey flan cakes, honey peanut butter, tasty honey mini-donuts and more. Plus some unique bars of honey and milk soap, very soothing ! And of course, jars and jars and jars of sunshine in a jar, pure golden honey in all sizes. The “Honey Guy” we see at the Cape Charles Farmer’s Market was even there with a little sampling jar of his delectable local Eastville honey. Yum !

Pony rides, a little petting zoo with curious, friendly sheep and a goat plus a bucket of corn to hand-feed them, aDSC_1954 Bouncy House plus an Activities Tent all kept kids involved in the fun. For those who got the serious munchies, Gordo’s Taqueria Truck could definitely satisfy cravings for spicy and delicious. And of course, Quail Cove was doing a brisk business at the inside store featuring the organic and natural foods and produce its famous for, especially their Amish Country cheeses, etc. Thanks Quail Cove Farms, a great idea, a very pleasant afternoon, looking forward to a 2nd Annual Honey Fest next year.

 

 

 

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ONCE AGAIN, THE CAPE CHARLES 4th OF JULY PARADE WAS A REALLY HUGE SUCCESS !

Monday, July 16th, 2018

DSC_0854The Cape Charles Independence Day Parade is always a marvelous combination of local pageantry, creative floats, colorful banners, fire company trucks with air horns blasting a loud ” howdy”, antique tractors, vintage cars, high stepping horses, kids on bikes, motor scooters, skateboards, resplendently decorated golf carts and energetic marchers representing local organizations, clubs and individuals. And this year was no exception ! Led by the Color Guard from the VFW, marchers enthusiastically paraded down Bay Avenue and over to Mason Avenue, tossing candy, colorful strands of beads and even a few yellow rubber duckies to all the kids and appreciative spectators lining the streets cheering them on !

And the Parade within the Parade, the Golf Cart Parade, was truly amazing this year, with the mostDSC_0909 participants I’ve ever seen ! Golf carts, dozens, dozens and dozens more, were dressed to the nines, red, whites and blues galore, flags of all sizes, balloons, Pom-poms, streamers, banners, signs, Uncle Sam top hats. Creativity shone everywhere. With golf carts being street-legal in Cape Charles, lots of Town residents have their very own electric golf carts and a little friendly competition among neighbors has resulted in some fancy and fantastic cart entries, all the better to enjoy this annual Parade ! Can hardly wait till July 4th, 2019 !

 

 

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Bravo To All Those Who Made The Palace Theatre’s Recent Dance Production of “The Legend of A Tree” Possible !

Friday, June 15th, 2018

I’m not sure why I was surprised. But I was expecting just your standard dance recital, nothing special, the “clap for everyone’s child and go mad for one’s own” version. Sunday matinee at the Palace Theatre in Cape Charles, there to cheer on my youngest granddaughter, Jessica, who we knew was going to be a “bluebell”, whatever that entailed, knowing that she had been working really hard on her performance. Running late, we slid into our seats just as the house lights faded and the stage set was revealed. A simple set but striking, a painted backdrop of an enormous tree at the edge of a beautiful park. And the audience mood came alive as the music cued, the narration began and the lead dancer appeared on stage in lovely costume. From there the audience was pulled headlong into a spirited performance by the Mara Ifju Dance Company of Shelia Cardano’s “The Legend of A Tree”, gliding gently into its fantasy world of peaceful meadow, pirouetting tulip, daisy and rose, dancing bluebells, cyclamen, honeysuckle, twirling sunflowers and, of course, the “nolia” tree.

Rarely have I initially expected so little of a performance and been surprised by enjoying it so much as with this program. From beginning to end, we loved it !IMG_9379 Music was key and the selections were perfect, familiar classical passages from Chopin, Beethoven, Bizet and Vivaldi, a little modern touch of Michael Jackson, but my personal favorites were pieces featuring the unique and haunting flutes from the Andes region of South America, a captivating sound. The choreography was well suited to the music selections and to individual dance talent. All the costumes were beautifully designed and so evocative of each flower. We especially loved the tap number, glitzy with bright green bowler hats contrasting with dark wardrobe, danced to the signature tune from A Chorus Line, “One”. And who wouldn’t have been captivated by the tiny Sunflowers, twirling in golden petals, and the teeny Fox and Rabbit, so cute !

DSC_0338_1So bravo, bravo to the Mara Ifju Dance Company and all its dancers ! You were great ! And hats off and thank-you to all the support staff, volunteers and donors who make a program like this possible. From countless hours spent on choreography and costume design to music recording, live piano accompaniment, scenery, make-up, lighting, sound, stage manager and crew, box office and more, It Takes A Town to create a production like this ! And isn’t the Shore fortunate to have this amazing Theatre and so much local talent to perform there, lucky, lucky us !

 

 

 

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THE ART AND MUSIC FESTIVAL AT THE BARRIER ISLAND CENTER – – AN ANNUAL EASTERN SHORE MEMORIAL DAY TRADITION

Tuesday, May 29th, 2018

DSC_0174The 2018 “Art and Music on the Farm” celebration in Machipongo at the distinctive Barrier Island Center was splendid, as always. Held Saturdays on Memorial Day weekends, this is one of the Virginia Eastern Shore’s most anticipated art events each year and not to be missed if you are looking for a unique gift, large or small, for others …. or, dare I say it, for oneself ! Or if you are a lover of traditional country and folk music, this year’s concerts on the Center’s West lawn were made better by the addition of a large tent to enable listeners to sit and relax in the shade as well as at the numerous umbrella- shaded tables provided. Featuring different music groups each year, interpretations of traditional Appalachian and folk music by the five bands this year were huge hits Saturday.

One of the most exciting aspects of this annual event is the sheer number and diversity of talented Shore artistsDSC_0038 and artisans it brings together in one spot. Sculpture, oil and watercolor painting, jewelry, decoy carving, ceramics, custom stuffed animals, woodworking, floral, pottery of all sorts, papier-mache’ figures, metal work, bronze casting, photography and more, something big or small, for everyone to love. I found an amazing gift for my husband for Father’s Day ( which I shan’t enumerate as he often reads these posts ), a Bethany Simpson painted magnet for my niece, a too-too cute blue and purple stuffed octopus from The Sheep Lady for my little great-grandson as well as some Mama Girl sand dollars for my daughter’s upcoming birthday. ( Thought about a Hogg Island fig tree from Island View Farms but decided to wait until Fall and look for one at the Cape Charles Farmer’s Market so as not have to water it through the summer.)

DSC_0114And what’s a celebration without food ? Nada ! So for all those who got the munchies, plenty of choices on offer. Kitchen Sync was there with lots of goodies including an aromatic jambalaya and luscious fresh strawberries in chantilly cream, the Cape Charles Lion’s Club offered sandwiches and crispy, salty fries, spicy gorditas could be found at the Taco Truck and folks lined up xx sausage tent. Beer, wine and iced coffee/tea/fresh lemonade purveyors offered their sublime chilled liquids of the day. A perfect day and a wonderful time, the weather was lovely, temperate and breezy, blue skies, puffy white clouds, golden sunshine. What more could one ask – – beautiful art, toe-tapping music, good food, cold drink, a stunning venue and a beautiful day, Art on the Farm, 2018 !

 

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