TO SPRINT OR NOT TO SPRINT ? THAT WAS THE QUESTION AT THE 2018 “FEBRUARY FREEZE” IN CAPE CHARLES, VIRGINIA

March 16th, 2018 by Marlene email

DSC_8855The sky was sunny, the air was balmy, the water was a beautiful blue. But the Bay temp was a body- numbing 47 degrees as dozens of excited, derring do “Dipper” teams and individuals got ready to brave the icy Chesapeake waters to raise money for the Eastern Shore chapter of Habitat for Humanity. This year’s event was Habitat’s 22nd Annual “February Freeze” benefit at the Cape Charles beach and it was especially exciting because of the tide, which was exceptionally low, exposing a huge tidal flat along the shoreline. Ordinarily one would think this would be quite beneficial. But, as fate would have it, the tide was rising and during the long run out to the deeper water, about a thousand participating toes were no doubt turning multiple shades of blue as the Dippers traversed ice cold sand covered by several inches of frigid water to get to the deep water beyond. Some sauntered along bravely while others raced headlong into the Bay, figuring that the better part of valor was zip in, zip out ! 3 memebers of the Cape Charles Coast Guard Auxiliary were on site in case of emergency, 1 wading out to what would likely be the furthest distance point for a swimmer, just in case.

On hand to lead the charge against the elements were two Celebrity Dippers, Robbie Marsh, Director of the Eastern ShoreDSC_8952 Chamber of Commerce, breezy in a hilarious green hat with bulging eyeballs, and Evelyn Shotwell, Director of the Chincoteague Chamber, both carrying scepters fashioned from pink swim noodles ! They were terrific sports- – the first in and, shivering only slightly, just about the last out ! An enthusiastic crowd was on hand to cheer the Dippers onward to February Freeze glory, with towels and a hand-warming fire barrel at the ready as they returned, soaking wet, to the beach. Volunteers served hot chocolate by the Gazebo and each Dipper who raised at least $35 was treated to a hot lunch. So it was a beautiful, sunny day for those helping to raise money for a tremendous organization which assists in building safe housing all over the Shore for those in need. Hats off to Habitat, it does great work !

DSC_9030 DSC_8907

 

 

 

 

 

 

DSC_8975

 

 

 

 

 

 

DSC_8890

 

 

 

 

 

 

DSC_9003

DSC_8988

VIRGINIA OPERA – – ANOTHER WONDERFUL EVENT AT LEMON TREE GALLERY !

February 23rd, 2018 by Marlene email

DSC_8743I don’t know why, but it always amazes me when members of the Virginia Opera Company perform here on the Eastern Shore. Maybe because of its stature as the “Official Opera Company of the Commonwealth of Virginia”, maybe because its other venues, the Harrison Opera House in Norfolk, the Dominion Arts Center in Richmond and the George Mason University Center for the Arts in Fairfax, are so imposing by comparison. But last Sunday afternoon, there they were at beautiful Lemon Tree Gallery in Cape Charles, 5 members of the Virginia Opera Company’s Emerging Artists program ! Stars in the making, they gave a wonderful performance of “Aria’s and Duets” in the small and intimate Lemon Tree setting in Cape Charles VA, particularly special because the audience can connect so personally with the performers. And such a lovely feel, surrounded by the gallery’s impressive collection of works by local artists and artisans.

Soprano Rachel Mikol led off with an aria from Mozart’s “The Impresario” followed shortly by the familiar and beloved Puccini aria, “ O mio babbino caro”, an audience favorite. The program concludedDSC_8588 with a soaring Marian Anderson spiritual performed by baritone Phillip Bullock and mezzo-soprano Melanie Campbell. Lots of energy was brought to their program which included an interesting mix of classical and modern, including a selection from Stephen Sondheim’s “Into The
Woods,” sung by Bullock and bass-baritone Joshua Arky, all accompanied by accomplished pianist, ChanMi Jean. But the showstopper was Campbell’s strong rendition of Hammerstein’s “Can’t Help Loving That Man of Mine” from Showboat.

DSC_8665

 

At the conclusion of the performance, the audience gave a standing ovation and Clelia Sheppard’s daughter, Sheila, and her granddaughter, Aven, presented bouquets of lovely pink roses to each performer. After an encore, wine and light hor d’oeuvres were served, giving audience members an opportunity to meet and speak with the performers. All the performers were terrific, and Ms. Whipple and Mr. Bullock were standouts. Definitely we can expect to see all of these “ emerging artists” making their presence felt on the national and international stage.

 

DSC_8559 DSC_8569

 

 

 

 

 

 

DSC_8638 DSC_8645

 

 

 

 

 

 

DSC_8714

 

 

 

 

THE 2018 EASTERN SHORE LUNAR ECLIPSE & THE “SUPER BLUE BLOOD MOON”

February 2nd, 2018 by Marlene email

DSC_8312

For the first time in about 150 years, a lunar eclipse occurred on the exact same date as a “super blue blood moon.” Unfortunately, Mother Nature blew in a blanket of thick, thick clouds which obscured the horizon at both moonrise on the evening of January 30th and at moon set on the morning of the 31st, preventing folks on the lower Eastern Shore from seeing the vibrant moon colors that would have otherwise been visible and gorgeous. But were able to catch some good photos after the moon rose fairly high in the sky, brightly shining, huge, gleaming pearly white over Oyster, the Cape Charles water tower, the Harbor and the Hump. And in the icy chill at dawn on the morning of the 31st, it was simply beautiful over the Cape Charles beach and the LOVE sign as slowly it sank westward. But sadly, just as its color would have morphed red as it approached the horizon, the moon completely disappeared behind a thick cloud bank, concealing the actual eclipse and the super blood moon ! Goodnight Moon ! Good morning Sun !

 

DSC_8331DSC_8350

 

 

 

 

 

 

DSC_8368 DSC_8399

 

 

 

 

 

 

DSC_8377 DSC_8373

 

 

 

 

 

 

DSC_8372 DSC_8414

 

 

 

 

 

 

DSC_8397 DSC_8418

 

CAPE CHARLES, VA IS ONE OF TEN FINALISTS IN COASTAL LIVING MAGAZINE “HAPPIEST SEASIDE TOWN” CONTEST !

January 25th, 2018 by Marlene email

1Aerial 300dpi2We are thrilled that our little coastal town of Cape Charles is in the “Top 10” on Coastal Living Magazine’s 2018 list of the “Happiest Seaside Towns” ! Every year for the past seven years, Coastal Living magazine has created a Top 10 list of the “Happiest Seaside Towns”. Original nominations come via social media. From there, Coastal Living evaluates the nominees for such qualities, outlined on its website, as we looked at their ranking the Gallup-Healthways Well-Being Index, percentage of clear and sunny days, healthiness of beaches, commute times, walkability, crime ratings, standard of living and financial well-being of locals, geographic diversity, and our editors’ assessment of each town’s “coastal vibe.”

Cape Charles is very much a happy little town, relaxed, low-key, with lots of lifestyle amenities and things to do. A beautiful soft sand beach, multipleDSC_2779 marinas and boat ramps, Palmer and Nicklaus1Aerial 300dpi2 Signature golf courses, cute little shops and galleries, an impressive art presence, a theatre, fine and casual dining, all these opportunities are the raw ingredients. Mix in the wonderful Cape Charles community spirit and there we see the possibilities for being voted the 2018 Happiest Seaside Town ! If you want to participate and vote for Cape Charles, click the link below. You can vote multiple times but voting ends at 5pm on February 6,2018. As of this writing, Cape Charles was fifth in the number of votes so we have a ways to go to hit #1 by February 6th. So let’s get voting !!

HERE IS THE LINK FOR VOTING: https://www.coastalliving.com/travel/happiest-seaside-town

brown dog DSC_4052

 

 

 

 

 

 

DSC_1671 smyth_beach_photo

 

 

 

 

 

 

22048111_625479491175046_3583599484166833963_o DSC_2773

 

 

 

 

 

 

DSC_4948 Sailboat Reflections

 

 

 

 

 

 

DSC_0301 DSC_3140

 

 

 

 

 

JUST RECENTLY LISTED! “Magnolia” A Spectacular Brick Waterfront Home With Dock in Cape Charles, VA.

January 25th, 2018 by Marlene email

111 Creekside Ln Cape Charles-print-004-9-Exterior Front-4200x2362-300dpiLocated in the charming historic beach town of Cape Charles, VA in the impressive Plantation Pointe village at Bay Creek Golf Resort, “Magnolia” was designed with a traditional Southern flair, combining the classic with the nostalgic in a modern waterfront home with all the bells & whistles. Offered at $1,700,000 and located on a partially wooded 1.12 acre lot on a wide saltwater inlet from the Chesapeake Bay, this magnificent home of over 7000 sq. ft. offers 6 bedrooms, 5 full and 3 half baths, 3 fireplaces, 4 balconies, an amazing chef’s kitchen, a spacious media room, mahogany paneled library, a 3 car garage and a backyard dock. From the gracious entry foyer with gorgeous inlaid magnolia mosaic to the broad rear patio with in-ground pool overlooking blue waters, this stunning home is ready for you and your guests and entertaining in brilliant style. Bay Creek offers miles of soft sand beaches, Palmer and Nicklaus Signature golf, jogging trails, pool, tennis, on-site restaurant and more along the shores of the Chesapeake Bay. Just 5 minutes to the Cape Charles Historic Area with yesteryear architecture, quaint shops, restaurants, theatre, art galleries, boat ramps and 2 marinas. So if you are coastal by nature, come discover the allure of our Eastern Shore Lifestyle ! Call us at 800-258-3437 for an appointment to view this very special home.

111 Creekside Ln Cape Charles-print-117-112-DSC 0307-4200x2803-300dpi

 

 

 

 

 

 

111 Creekside Ln Cape Charles-print-052-17-Study-4200x2803-300dpi - Copy 111 Creekside Ln Cape Charles-print-025-31-Dining Room-4200x2803-300dpi - Copy (2)

 

 

 

 

 

 

111 Creekside Ln Cape Charles-print-042-57-Living Room-4200x2803-300dpi - Copy 111 Creekside Ln Cape Charles-print-045-30-Living Room-4200x2803-300dpi

 

 

 

 

 

 

111 Creekside Ln Cape Charles-print-078-72-Kitchen-4200x2803-300dpi

111 Creekside Ln Cape Charles-print-081-197-Kitchen-4200x2803-300dpi

 

 

 

 

 

 

111 Creekside Ln Cape Charles-print-059-88-Master Bedroom-4200x2803-300dpi

111 Creekside Ln Cape Charles-print-072-67-Master Bathroom-4200x2803-300dpi

 

 

 

 

 

 

111 Creekside Ln Cape Charles-print-111-69-Bedroom-4200x2803-300dpi 111 Creekside Ln Cape Charles-print-114-100-Bedroom-4200x2803-300dpi (1) - Copy

 

 

 

 

 

 

111 Creekside Ln Cape Charles-print-127-146-Bedroom-4200x2803-300dpi 111 Creekside Ln Cape Charles-print-120-182-Bedroom-4200x2803-300dpi

 

 

 

 

 

 

111 Creekside Ln Cape Charles-print-167-153-MediaGame Room-4200x2803-300dpi 111 Creekside Ln Cape Charles-print-157-148-MediaGame Room-4200x2803-300dpi

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

DSCN7184-MAK DSCN7221

 

 

 

 

 

Live The Eastern Shore Waterfront Life!

January 25th, 2018 by Marlene email

15871622_454166924972971_3837683010458265046_nYou’ll feel like you are on a relaxing vacation everyday in this delightful 5 bedroom, 3.5 bath custom built, contemporary waterfront home on a high wooded knoll with a multi-slip dock & good boating water. Priced at $629,000, located in Machipongo on the scenic Eastern Shore of Virginia, just 15 minutes to all the great shopping and golf amenities in Cape Charles. Sited on a large lot on a quiet cul-de-sac, this spacious home with southern exposure and great water views offers coastal living at its best. Top of the line construction, great window package, chef’s kitchen with granite countertops, dual ovens, kitchen Island breakfast bar, masonry fireplace, intercom, recessed lighting, hardwood floors, custom bathroom tiles, full walls of near floor-to-ceiling windows for enhanced water views, Hunter Douglas blinds, etc. are just some of the upgrades in this lovely home. Filled with natural light, quite open and airy, with 14′ ceilings in Living Room and 12′ ceiling in family room. Family Room, kitchen, eat-in area (other Rm2) & living room are all open to each other, offering great water views and fabulous entertaining opportunities. Nearly every room opens onto the full house length back covered porch area. Large Master Bedroom with huge walk-in closet, Jacuzzi style tub and large shower with decorative tiles. Large bonus room over the oversized 2 car garage, perfect for fitness room/home theater/bunkhouse, etc. Multi-slip dock with seating, boat lift and plenty of space for all your other other water toys. Check out http://www.blueheronva.com/boating_properties/

15895515_454172568305740_1376593153605995441_o 15844046_454167541639576_2171838038748438658_o

 

 

 

 

 

15875333_454169311639399_6325348334180335802_o 15875287_454169114972752_5981659480618705593_o

 

 

 

 

 

 

15843967_454169048306092_6910476946109025350_o 15874685_454169211639409_6616363267802653772_o

 

 

 

 

 

 

15896075_454169528306044_1333022206207615439_o 15875140_454168991639431_8423410678153366745_o

 

 

 

 

 

 

15896067_454169714972692_8977752492734556935_o 15895945_454169894972674_1499820801322261809_o

 

 

 

 

 

 

15895836_454172438305753_8424804846639101313_o 15895918_454172798305717_6937986322059121576_o

 

 

 

 

 

 

15896089_454167904972873_8397775164218914_o 15844255_454174078305589_1265783981648509184_o

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

SHINE ON, SHINE ON, SUPER MOON SO WAY UP HIGH… OVER VIRGINIA’S EASTERN SHORE ! AND IT DID ! SUPER MOON RISE/SET JANUARY 2nd/3rd, 2018

January 9th, 2018 by Marlene email

DSC_8077Not only did the Super Moon shine brightly on the night of January 2nd, there is still a second 2018 Super Moon coming on January 31st. The 2018 calendar year boasted 2 Super Moons- – the January 2nd and the upcoming January 31st, a moon which will not only be a Super Moon, where the moon is closest in its orbit to Earth, but also a “Blue Moon”, a second full moon falling within a given calendar month. Chronicling the January 2nd event from the harbor’s viewing stand overlooking Parting Creek in Willis Wharf sounded like fun. Moon rise was indicated for 5:56 pm, more than an hour past sunset so full darkness which unfortunately, for me, increases the difficulty of getting good photo takes which include surrounding landscape. Even more unfortunately, it was well after 6 when we rolled up, the moon already above the horizon, disappointing, because seeing the moon as it just peeks over is always special. And it was really cold, dare we say Super Cold – – but the night was crystal clear, the stars were like brilliant twinkling diamonds flung across the sky and the moon glowed a deep, lovely gold, an incredible sight as it began its journey westward. Only a few boats were tied up in the marina, the harbor’s street lights creating a rather erie feel, water sluggish, new ice everywhere, little chunks and ice pans undulating around the empty boats, the super-bright Super Moon above, all the while my shutter finger screaming Frostbite Alert ! Frostbite Alert !

Up early on January 3rd, hoping for some good photos of Super Moon Set on my way to an appointment across the Bay. By the crack of dawn, as the moon was rapidly DSC_8067cruising West and the sun was rising slowly in the East, I was heading down Bayside Road. Although it was barely 6 am, an early gathering of Franktown farmers was already out in the field, pick-up taillights glowing red, bright spotlights illuminating a big piece of machinery, the Moon now pearly white and huge overhead, moonbeams falling softly on wide fields and clattering diesel motors below. Farming by moonlight, that’s dedication! Moon Set was indicated for 7:31 am on the 3rd but an early appointment in Virginia Beach kept exploration for a variety of moon-set photo locations to a minimum. Luckily, still bright and still Super, the moon yielded some interesting shots near The Colony, the Oyster Farm Marina and the Outlook pull-off on the Bridge. So, Super Moon 2018 # 1 over, looking forward to Super Moon # 2/Blue Moon on the 31st ! And then – – that’s it until January 21, 2019.

 

 

 

DSC_8006 DSC_8008

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

DSC_8056

IMG_6326

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

DSC_8025

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

DSC_8079 DSC_8081

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

“Festive Friday” In Cape Charles, VA”

December 21st, 2017 by Marlene email

DSC_7598Happily, there is still one more chance to experience a “Festive Friday” in Cape Charles this season ! Still one more chance, on December 22nd, to enjoy the beautiful and cheery shop windows along Mason Avenue and down Strawberry Street, all dressed to the nines for the holidays. Maybe shop for a unique piece of art at Lemon Tree or Ellen Moore Gallery, enjoy a savory gourmet dinner at Hook-U-Up or a steaming cup of hot chocolate at the popular Cape Charles Coffee House, sample the smooth balsamic vinegars at Drizzles, select your New Year’s Eve champagne at Gull Hummock, visit with a friendly agent at Blue Heron Realty, browse the gift shop at the beautiful, newly re-opened Northampton Hotel, check out the international offerings from Voiajer, take a horse and carriage ride and so much, much, much more ! You might even take time to drop in at the “North Pole” to tell Santa or Mrs. Claus ( aka the ever-effervescent Trina Veber ) what you want, what you really, really want, for Christmas this year ! And so, Merry Christmas to all and to all a Goodnight !

If you’ve never, ever been to a “Festive Friday” in Cape Charles, you probably don’t realize that it is so much more than just a few merchants staying open late each FridayDSC_7503 evening between Thanksgiving and Christmas. At its heart, it is the culmination of the hopes, dreams, efforts and financial investments of a myriad of individuals, businesses and organizations who believed that Cape Charles could rise like a Phoenix from the ashes of its post-ferry, post- railroad, essentially “post-everything” economic doldrums and become, once again, the dynamic little coastal town of its yesteryear, with well cared-for homes and bustling shops, a spirit of civic pride and a sense of fun. And not to get too, too sentimental, but when you think back to the near-derelict homes throughout town and the boarded-up stores along Mason Avenue that were still in existence even 5 years ago ( farewell McCrory’s and BeLo, hello Strawberry Station), the Cape Charles transformation from down-at-heel to sparkling restoration is truly inspiring.

DSC_7510So “Festive Friday” is the actualization of those aspirations rolled into 2017, into lots of happy folks strolling down the street at 8 pm on a windy, cold December Friday evening, beautifully decorated shops serving smiling customers, clever street performers doing their entertaining thing, lively songs of the Christmas carolers, horse-drawn carriage rides, delicious gourmet dinners and free holiday movies at the Palace Theatre. And, of course, Santa and Mrs. Claus, greeting excited little kids eager to shyly whisper their Christmas wishes. “Festive Friday” is truly like a 1000 points of new light, illuminating historic downtown Cape Charles, amazing and wonderful!!

 

25587937_668697106853284_7134603120880215510_o DSC_7585

 

 

 

 

 

 

DSC_7486 DSC_7541

 

 

 

 

 

DSC_7552 DSC_7542

 

 

 

 

 

DSC_7550 DSC_7532

 

 

 

 

 

DSC_7539 DSC_7595

 

 

 

 

 

DSC_7618

 

 

 

 

 

DSC_7614

The 7th Annual Grand Illumination And Golf Cart Parade In Cape Charles, VA

December 8th, 2017 by Marlene email

DSC_7178The 2017 Annual “Grand Illumination” kicked off the official start of the holiday season in Cape Charles, VA last Saturday evening with the 7th Annual “Grand Illumination” in Central Park. This community event was originated in 2010 by Citizens for Central Park and was hosted for many years by Chris Bannon of Sea Gate BnB ( aka Mr. Cape Charles ) as its delightful Master of Ceremonies. A newish addition to these festivities, the “Golf Cart Parade”, started just a few years ago with 11 participating carts. It grew and grew into this year’s dazzling parade of 33 golf carts, all gussied up, resplendent with lights and ornaments, smiling drivers and laughing passengers. Happy to note that Blue Heron Realty’s cart participated again this year for a 2nd time – – looking good, Blue Heron guys and gals !

By tradition, Christmas carols were sung by the gathered crowd, candles were lit and held aloft by the audience in memory ofDSC_7112 loved ones, hundreds of points of light, quite beautiful piercing the darkness of Central Park. And then, with a flip of a switch by the Mayor, thousands of lights on the Gazebo and on all the Park’s trees glowed brilliantly in the dark, a very Grand Illumination ! Afterwards, a jolly Santa Claus took Christmas requests from dozens of children whose heads would soon, no doubt, be dancing with visions of sugarplums. All this made cheerier under a bright moonlit sky, almost but not quite, the vaunted Super Moon, but very special nevertheless.

 

DSC_7164 DSC_7121

 

 

 

 

 

 

DSC_7099 DSC_7109

 

 

 

 

 

 

DSC_7127 DSC_7068

 

 

 

 

 

 

DSC_7088DSC_7103

 

 

 

 

 

 

DSC_7138 DSC_7131

 

 

 

 

 

 

DSC_7144 DSC_7155

THE SILVERY BEAMS OF THE 2017 SUPER MOON ON THE EASTERN SHORE OF VIRGINIA

December 5th, 2017 by Marlene email

DSC_7212What appears brighter and bigger and might only appear but once a year ? A Super Moon ! And during the December 3rd the 2017 Super Moon, our moon orbited to its closest distance to earth for this entire year, making this silvery orb appear much brighter and larger than a normal full moon. Here are a few Eastern Shore Virginia Super Moon shots we took that night. From the vivid pink moonrise as it climbed above the horizon in Oyster, VA  to its pearly white aspect and glittering beams high in the sky above Cape Charles, it really was a beautiful sight !  I think Shakespeare said it best – – “How sweet the moonlight sleeps upon this bank ! Here we will sit and let the sounds of music creep in our ears. Soft stillness and the night become the touches of sweet harmony. “

By the way, soon, another Skywatchers delight ! A Blue Moon is coming – – In just a few weeks, the two Super Moons of 2018 will both take place in January, on the 2nd and 31st. The Moon on the 31st will be a “Blue Moon” as it is the second full moon in a calendar month. So, once in a blue moon … get ready to “croon love’s tune” to your honey by the light of these two silvery Super Moons !

DSC_7210 DSC_7225

 

 

 

 

 

DSC_7310 DSC_7305

 

 

 

 

 

DSC_7261 DSC_7267

 

 

 

 

 

DSC_7285 DSC_7256

 

 

 

 

 

DSC_7318DSC_0648

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

DSC_0611 DSC_0628

 

 

 

 

 

DSC_7235 DSC_7303

 

 

 

 

 

 

DSC_0607 DSC_7324