Cedar Creek and Belle Grove host trench tours

cedar creek

Cedar Creek and Belle Grove National Historic Park announced they will offer ranger-guided tours of Civil War trenches on Sunday mornings beginning May 21st.

The walks will start at 10 AM and last about an hour.

Walks will follow a half mile of the trenches which were dug days before the Battle of Cedar Creek to fortify the United States position south of Middletown and stretched about a mile north of Valley Pike.

Rangers recommend bringing water, suitable walking shoes, and insect repellant.

Participants should meet at the entrance to the 19th Corps Trails on Route 11 2.4 miles south of the NPS Visitor Center in Middletown.

Additional dates for the walks include June 4th, September 17th, and October 4th.

For more news from across the Shenandoah Valley, click here.

Kris Kringle Christmas Market returns to Belle Grove

Kris kringle outdoor market

This weekend is the 3rd annual Kris Kringle Christmas Market at Belle Grove.

Admission is free and open Saturday from 10 am to 4 pm and Sunday from 1 pm – 5 pm.

There will be over 60 local artisans and businesses to help you get ahead on holiday shopping as well as a variety of food options including German selections and hot chocolate or cider.

There will also be a Wreath Making Class, Story Time with Santa, a presentation on Christmas traditions of German immigrants in the Shenandoah Valley, and caroling from the Kernstown United Methodist Church Choir.

The Manor House will also be open for tours for a small fee but keep in mind the house is not yet decorated for the holidays.

For more news from across the Shenandoah Valley, click here.

Final Star Party at Cedar Creek and Belle Grove

cedar creek

Tonight is the final Star Party of the year at Cedar Creek and Belle Grove National Historic Park.

Viewing of the Orionid Meteor Shower will begin at 6:30 pm at their remote location on the property.

This shower will produce up to 20 meteors per hour from debris left by Comet Halley.

Telescopes will be available with Shenandoah Astronomical Society members on hand to show you how to use them.

Guests are encouraged to bring a blanket and chair to enjoy the show and keep in mind there are no bathrooms on site.

Meet at the Thoburn Redoubt Tract (stop no. 2 on the self-guided battlefield tour), owned by the Shenandoah Valley Battlefields Foundation (SVBF) on Bowman’s Mill Road.

This is a remote area and the property does not have a street address. Use the following directions or set your GPS device to 38°59’55.4″N, 78°19’10.7″W.

From U.S. Highway 11 just south of Middletown, turn onto Water Plant Road.

Go 1 mile to the intersection with Long Meadow Road.

Turn right onto Long Meadow Road. Go 0.1 mile.

Turn right onto Bowman’s Mill Road. Go 1.4 miles.

The Thoburn Redoubt Tract is marked by a Civil War Trails sign and some roadside exhibits.

Turn right into the property.

For more news from across the Shenandoah Valley, click here.

Belle Grove’s Annual GardenFest

Kris kringle outdoor market

Today is the Annual GardenFest and Master Gardener Plant Sale at Belle Grove Plantation from 8 am – 2 pm.

Admission and parking are free and all plants are for sale for $5.

Plant sale proceeds benefit Virginia Cooperative Extensions educational programming in Clarke, Frederick, Page, Shenandoah, and Warren Counties.

There will also be children’s activities, historic garden tours, information booths and more.

Tours will also be available for the Belle Grove Manor House from 10 AM to 4 PM.

For more news from across the Shenandoah Valley, click here.

Star Party with CCBF and Belle Grove

Kris kringle outdoor market

Star Parties have returned with the National Park Service and the Shenandoah Astronomical Society.

Three meteor showers are forecast for this year’s Saturday evening dates with the first shower tonight.

The Lyrid Meteor Shower is expected to start at 8 pm tonight.

Guests are welcome to these free events which will be held at Thoburn’s Redoubt, part of the Cedar Creek and Belle Grove Historical Park.

Telescopes are provided with instruction from Astronomical Society members or you can bring your own.

The other Star Parties this summer are planned for the Perseid Meteor Shower on August 13th and the Orionid Meteor Shower on October 22nd.

For more news from across the Shenandoah Valley, click here.

Belle Grove celebrates opening day

Kris kringle outdoor market

Belle Grove Plantation’s Opening Day for the 2022 season is today.

From 10 am to 4 pm, admission is free to the grounds and museum.

This season will feature the new exhibit Unearthing Enslaved Lives at Belle Grove.

From 2015-2019 archaeologists excavated over 60,000 artifacts from the Enslaved Quarter Site.

This helped them learn how the over 270 enslaved people lived at the plantation and their effect on the history and economy of the Shenandoah Valley.

For regular hours and tour information, go to bellegrove.org.

For more news from across the Shenandoah Valley, click here.

Belle Grove Plantation host National Sheepdog finals

Kris kringle outdoor market

Belle Grove Plantation is hosting the 2021 U.S. Border Collie Handlers Association National Sheepdog Finals Oct.5-10.

In today’s News Maker we talk to Belle Grove’s Executive Director Kristen Laise about the event.

The good news is brought to you by the town of Front Royal.

Kristen tells us about the history of the event as well as what to expect at Belle Grove over the five days.

Click here for Kristen’s interview.

For more news from across the Shenandoah Valley, click here.

Belle Grove’s annual wine fest has returned

Kris kringle outdoor market

Belle Grove Plantation’s Annual Wine Fest will kick off today starting at 11 am and will wrap up at 6 pm.

The event will feature wine, cider, and mead from across Virginia as well as a few local breweries and distilleries.

Live music will be playing all day thanks to the Gingerfunk Allstars and the Elizabeth Lawrence Band.

A chef’s demo will also be held along with plenty of food and merchandise vendors.

Tickets are $30 at the gate and tasters will receive a souvenir glass.

Options are available for non-drinkers as well.

For more news from across the Shenandoah Valley, click here. 

Gardening Classes at Belle Grove Plantation

Kris kringle outdoor market

Two separate classes will be offered at Bell Grove plantation both taught by master gardeners.

Joyce Watson of the Northern Shenandoah Valley Master Gardeners Association will be teaching about floral arrangements. Using all of our favorite summer flowers such as dahlias, sunflowers, coneflowers, and zinnias.

All participants should bring floral shears. Class is held at the Beverly B. Shoemaker Welcome Center on July 29, 2021.

Lynn Hoffman of the NSVMGA will be instructing a course on hanging basket planters on August 9, 2021. They cost 15 dollars a piece for supplies.

You can register and pay for both at http://bellegrove.org.

For more news from across the Shenandoah Valley, click here.

Belle Grove Plantation host living history demonstration

Kris kringle outdoor market

The Cider Creek Battlefield Foundation presents a living history weekend at Belle Grove Plantation Middletown.

Historians will demonstrate many aspects of life in from the mid-19 century.

Demonstrations will be available for the family with historians in full dress from the period.

Demonstrations include period photography, a recruit muster, practice drill, games, cooking class and more.

Activities begin early tomorrow May 15 and last through the weekend.

For more news from across the Shenandoah Valley, click here.