Virginia Hot Glass Festival: The Fascinating World of Hot Glass

The Virginia Hot Glass Festival Wows!

Virginia Hot Glass FestivalOne of the joys of being a Shenandoah Valley Bed and Breakfast is hearing our guests talk about the wonderful festivals that happen right here.

A favorite to the festival arena is the Virginia Hot Glass Festival.

And it’s no wonder. The world of glassmaking is mysterious and fascinating!

Who isn’t entranced watching professional glassblowers bend, twist, and shape hot ooey gooey into beautiful works of art?

An ancient craft, dating back to 50 B.C., glass blowing is physically demanding, requiring hand dexterity, a creative mind, as well as stamina. But the glass artists make it look so easy!

Hot Glass Artistry: 16th Annual Festival at Sunspots

Flamemaking Glass techniqueThis is the sixteenth year that Sunspots is hosting the Virginia Hot Glass Festival, which takes place May 26-27, 2018.

As the only annual Virginia festival that is devoted entirely to hot glass artistry, you can watch as various glass artists demonstrate their techniques such as traditional glassblowing, bead making, and flameworking.

But it’s not just glassmaking that you’ll see.

Sunspots’ entire second floor will be devoted to vendor booths. Here you can browse, as well as buy jewelry and art directly from visiting glass artists.

John Mason Stone Sculpture
John Mason Stone Sculpture

It’s a rare opportunity to have so many glass artists under one roof and to see them in action. So take advantage of it! Additionally, Barren Ridge Winery will be on hand for wine tastings.

But that’s not all. Across the street from the festival in the Sunspots Pavilion, the Virginia Stone Carvers will be demonstrating and exhibiting stone sculpting throughout the day.

While you’re enjoying the Virginia Hot Glass Festival, make sure you wander through the Sunspots studio. There you’ll find copper artwork as well as glass to enjoy.

Located in historic downtown Staunton, Sunspots is just minutes from the Inn at Old Virginia. So book your stay with us here, and enjoy a full day of fun with very little driving.

And while you’re downtown at the festival, you’ll find that Sunspots is within walking distance of many other shops located on the Wharf. Wander, explore, and enjoy!







Battle of New Market Reenactment 2018

Annual Reenactment of the Battle of New Market

Battle of New MarketWhat is now historic Bushong Farm and the Virginia Museum of the Civil War was once the stage for one of the last major Confederate victories in the Shenandoah Valley, which took place on May 15, 1864.

Now every year, the Virginia Museum of the Civil War and the New Market Battlefield State Historical Park host the reenactment of the Battle of New Market. This year, the historical Civil War event will take place on May 19-20.

The oldest annual battle reenactment in the nation takes place on the original 1864 battlefield. Many guests at the Inn at Old Virginia enjoy have enjoyed experiencing the sights and sounds of one of the Civil War’s many conflicts.

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Staunton Spring Events 2018: April Blooms!

2 Big Spring Events on the Same Day!

Virginia Historic Garden TourStaunton celebrates the beauty of spring with two big events. And, you can enjoy them both at the same time!

As part of the eight-day statewide Virginia Historic Garden Week, the tour lands in Staunton on April 21st.

Hailed as “America’s Largest Open House,” each year, visitors are welcomed to over 250 of Virginia’s most historic landmarks, as well as her beautiful gardens and homes.

Locally, there just isn’t a better way to celebrate spring.

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Heifetz Hootenanny 2018: The Fun Begins Now

Heifetz Hootenanny 2018It happens every March, the Heifetz Hootenanny for Spring. And, let’s face it. By the time the third month of the year gets here, we’re all ready for a major lift!

While we never know just what to expect from March weather, we do know that this year’s Hootenanny will not disappoint.

Just in case you’re not familiar with the Heifetz Institute’s event, it happens both in the spring and in the summer. Exceptional talent from around the world delights audiences with a lively sampler of multi-genre music.

It’s highly anticipated and loved by all.Read More

Highland County Maple Festival: 60 Years of Sweetness

The Highland County Maple Festival Celebrates 60 Years

The Highland Maple Festival

Every March, thousands of people make the twist and turn ride through the Alleghany Mountains for the Highland County Maple Festival. And this year will be no exception.

However, it will be a little sweeter as the festival marks its 60th anniversary.

So what makes Highland County so special? For starters, it’s one of the last unspoiled rural regions in Virginia.

As soon as you arrive, you’ll feel like you’ve taken a step back in time. With mountain byways and back roads, “Virginia’s Sweet Spot” was designated a Local Legacy by the Library of Congress in 1999. Guests of the Inn at Old Virginia always rave about the quality and the fun they have at this treasured festival.

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2Wishes Music: The Spice of Life


2Wishes Music and Our Sweetheart Coffeehouse

2Wishes MusicThis year for Valentine’s Day, we wanted an event that was both a romantic getaway for couples, but also fun.

That’s when we came up with the idea of a sweetheart coffeehouse. Coffee, music, and love. What could be better!

And then we thought of 2Wishes Music, the local musical duo with just the right touch of easy going and saucy. They would be the perfect addition to our laidback event.

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Redbeard Brewing Company: A Small Brewery with Big Beer Taste

Jonathan Wright
Jonathan Wright, Brewmaster, Redbeard Brewing Company

“Where can we go for great beer?” That’s a question we hear frequently from guests of the Inn at Old Virginia.

They know they have lots of choices because of the Shenandoah Valley’s growing reputation for producing stellar craft beer.

One of our go-to places to send Inn guests for great beer isn’t even a micro brewery; it’s a nano ale brewery!

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Appalachian Piecework: Textile and History Delight Customers

Appalachian Piecework Preserves Old Textile Crafts


 Shibori Scarf
Shibori Scarf

“I just love the old textiles,” Laurie Gundersen of Appalachian Piecework says. Her love is obvious. Located at the Train Station in downtown Staunton, every part of Gundersen’s shop is a piece of local Shenandoah Valley history told through her skilled hands.

That’s why when we have guests here at the Inn at Old Virginia who are particularly interested in history, we tell them they have to go to Laurie’s shop!

There they will find items that were once a part of everyday 19th-century life. The difference?

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Historic Staunton Foundation: Winter Wine Weekend 2018

About the Historic Staunton Foundation

Old Historic Staunton Foundation
1894 Staunton Hotel before Renovation

You might think the Historic Staunton Foundation is a Non-Profit that’s stuck in the past. No, not stuck, inspired by it! While HSF is dedicated to preserving historic buildings here in Staunton, it is equally dedicated to preserving and revitalizing neighborhoods and communities.

Preserving our local culture and the stories associated with it is certainly part of their mission but so is restoring worn out buildings that ultimately build a sense of community pride!

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Reunion Bakery & Espresso: A European Style Cafe

Reunion Bakery & Espresso Raises the Bar on Coffee & Pastries

Brian Hollar
Brian Hollar

Bryan Hollar is a corporate dropout, and he likes that just fine. In fact, when you talk to him, it’s hard to even imagine him in a suit and tie.

Likeable and easy to talk with, we learned his passion for America’s go-to combo, coffee and pastries, started after he quit Corporate America.

“It was a confluence of factors that led me to baking,” he said on a relatively quiet Monday morning in his cafe, Reunion Bakery & Espresso.

In a quest to carve out a new career beginning, he took a couple of trips abroad and hung out with a close friend who became an oven builder.

He then moved to Pennsylvania and worked for a high-end French pastry shop as a “lowly pastry assistant.” In two years, he worked his way up to managing the kitchen that baked croissants.Read More

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