Finding the perfect beer in Fredericksburg
Mark and are beer drinkers. When we travel we like to try local microbrews and other regional favorites. Here we find at the Capital Ale House sampling Avery a lot microbrew. If your Fredericksburg we both recommend checking out the samples of Avery brewers.
Fredericksburg Confederate Cemetery, Part I
A group of Fredericksburg women formed the Ladies Memorial Association and purchased land for a Confederate cemetery in 1867. Originally organized the previous year to care for the graves of the Confederate dead on the battlefields, the Association re-interred 3,300 Southern soldiers, 2,184 of them unknown, in a new location, the Confederate Cemetery; six Confederate generals also lie buried here.
Eventually headstones, supplied by various Southern states, replaced the original cedar post markers. In 1884 the Assocation placed a monument of a Confederate soldier amid the graves (see photos #4 & #5).
Historic Civil War area
Fredericksburg and Spotsylvania County, being about halfway between the Confederate and Union capitals of Richmond and Washington were the sites of some of the bloodiest battles of the civil war. There were literally tens of thousands of casualties on both sides and the sites of the battles of Fredericksburg, Chancellorsville, the Wilderness and Spotsylvania Court House raged throughout the early 1860’s and are all memorialized today. Civil War buffs could spend an unlimited amount of time visiting the sites, walking the trails through the battlefields and seeing the many statues, etc. Besides its Civil War history, the farm where George Washington lived as a child is nearby and the town features a university named for his mother, Mary – the University of Mary Washington.
I am not a Civil War buff and have visited Fredericksburg only to visit family living nearby and for a weekend VirtualTourist meeting. The town is not large, only about 20,000 residents, but it is a charming place with lots of nice shops and good restaurants. An added bonus is that the street parking in the historic downtown area is free.
Fredericksburg VT meet
"Zana's fabulous barbeque dinner and party."
Most of us gathered Thursday afternoon/eveing at the Inn at the Old Silk Mill who provided a nice room for us. Zana and her family cooked barbeque, chicken, baked beans, collards, mac and cheese, pasta salad and some of the best pecan pies I have tasted. I don't think anyone got a photo of the whole group as people arrived and left different days and times. I am sure everyone is on one of Hansi's videos at some point. But here is the first attempt at a group picture. Getting VTers together is sort of like herding cats.
"Lake Anna wine tour"
Trivia question of the day: How many wineries are there in Virginia. I was astounded at the number: 180! We toured the Lake Anna Winery and got a nice lesson on the whole process of wine making. The photo below is in the temp-controlled storage area which is filled with oak barrels of wine as well as the cases you see stacked up.
We got a taste of about a dozen of Lake Anna's wines and found a number of them very nice indeed. Contrary to public opinion and the photo, Iant and Mrs. Slapshot are not always the first ones to the bar, but they did seem to enjoy it.
"Rocks that look like cloth"
On Saturday we toured Luray Caverns which are spectacular. In a huge chamber there is even an organ that plays music by means of small rubber mallets striking the stalactites. It is quite lovely. I was impressed with the "drapery rocks" which are stalactites that form in sheets and do indeed look like hanging draperies. I particularly like the one int he photo with the light shining through the "drapery."
Saturday night we had dinner at Tru Luv's, a nice little bistro with really good food and they provided us a nice room. Everyone seemed to enjoy the food - I went crabby all the way - nice crab bisque and crab cakes which were some of the best I have eaten.
"Video of video"
Hansi not only had his video camera but had his laptop and we talked via Skype with a number of other VTers who could not make the meeting. In the photo Hansi is videoing a video while Lori talks to I think one of the Aussie VTers. You can see a lot of his videos on his page and he did take a lot. After our tour of Luray Caverns, Lori commented that he videoed every stalactite and every stalacmite there. I haven't seen it yet, but there was evidently a young couple touring and when they reaced the lovely "wishing well" in the caverns, he got down on one knee and proposed - while Hansi videoed them.
I don't know how many but there were a lot of virtual attendees there. My VA was YVRDave so I very graciously took him to dinner virtually Sat night and even picked up his virtual tab. Giampiero, VT's GM, joined us Friday and Saturday and it was a treat for several of us to finally meet the "main man." In the photo YVRDave is with G and Zana, our fabulous host. Zana's "horns" are provided by her granddaughter.
"Brunch at Poppyhill"
On Zana's recommendation, 4 of us had brunch Sunday morning at the very nice Tusdan Poppyhill - delicious breakfast with great VT friends on the sidewalks of historic Fredericksburg on a sunny, cool day - doesn't get much better than that. Here I am with Balfor, Gillybob and Suet.