The Wool Factory

Yesterday I had the good fortune to attend a gathering with some of the board members of the National Women’s Political Caucus – Virginia (check us out!) at a super fun place called The Wool Factory, “a unique collaboration between chefs, brewers, winemakers, and coffee roasters aimed at creating a distinct food-and-beverage destination”.

As always when I travel and explore new places, I must know the history and the Wool Factory’s website provides it! Originally a water grist mill (1795), and later burned by the Union Army (1865), the Charlottesville Woolen Mills was established in 1868 and “became nationally known for their excellent production of fine military fabrics and uniforms, furnishing cloth for the majority of railroad workers and military schools”. The mill closed in 1962 and “the majority of the surviving mill buildings standing on the site today were built in 1920-1930s”.

What a cool, cool place this is! The beers are named after the original wool fabrics that were produced at the mill. Needing a light cold beer after a 100 mile motorcycle ride, I opted for the Poplin followed by the Flannel No. 2. These paired well with the Peruvian Chicken.

The excellent company of board members and friends kept me from exploring the site further, but I will be back with camera again in hand for further photo ops and the trying out of new beers (they also have cocktails!) and elevated bar food.

If you are near Charlottesville, Virginia be sure to plan a visit to this historic woolen mill.

Bristol Tennesse / Virginia

Public Art: Take the Stage – Val Lyle, Sculptor

Back in December, Greg and I had the chance to spend 24 hours in Bristol, a city that straddles the state lines of Virginia and Tennessee. I posted about that quick visit and gave it the title 24 Hours in Bristol, and I almost, without realizing my mistake, gave this post the same title since that is about the same amount of time that we spent there.

We were in town to watch a debate between the 5 Democratic candidates for Governor of Virginia. After that, I managed to find a few moments to capture some of the flavor of this city.

The Paramount, preparing to reopen!
Under the bar …. it just caught my eye as I walked by
View of the backside of the City … I loved the subdued colors
Just a little fun with succulents
Evening on State Steet, the right side is Virginia; the left side is Tennessee
Public Art: Wall Mural reflecting the Virginia is For Lovers theme

Next time, we’ll try for a longer stay!

The Candler Hotel – Atlanta

The Candler Building was built in 1906 by Coca-Cola magnate and former Mayor Asa Griggs Candler. Standing on the site of one of Atlanta oldest churches, it was the city’s first skyscraper and tallest structure at 17 stories.

Now in the Hilton Curio Collection, the building underwent painstaking restoration and reopened as a hotel in 2019. Some of the features include:

  • Beau-Arts style, drawing upon the principles of French neoclassicism and incorporating Gothic and Renaissance elements
  • Picturesque, hand-carved marble staircase capped with The Candler Hotel’s iconic winged lion
  • Ornate décor using brass, mahogany & marble materials, that weaves an intricate family story is infused throughout the hotel
  • Lobby featuring two original Tiffany glass windows
  • Mysterious secret bank vault below ground
  • A historic Ballroom, completely transformed
  • A variety of window styles and layouts on each of the 15 stories
  • Detailed arched windows with elaborate cornices that crown the building, radiating its historical effect on downtown Atlanta

Moss and Lichen in Historic Fredericksburg

Just a quick stroll through historic Fredericksburg, Virginia. I have no idea how old this wall is but it was next to a home that was over a century old.

Atlanta: Decorated for the Holidays

My son’s negative Covid test meant that we were able to travel to Atlanta for a 48 hr stay over Christmas Eve and Christmas Day.  Despite being home to over 6 million people, we were able to remain socially distanced and follow precautions while thoroughly enjoying the outdoor festive decorations.

These images are a mixture of Fuji and Android, most taken on the fly in cccoooolllllddddd temps.  I’m definitely not bragging about these shots … just trying to give you a taste of the city!

We stayed in Midtown and despite the frigid temps, the sun was shining and we braved the cold to explore the area.

We stayed at the Georgian Terrace Hotel which opened it’s doors in 1911.

The Georgian Terrace Hotel is right down the street from St. Marks United Methodist Church which was erected in 1902.

 

We spent Christmas evening at the Atlanta Botanical Gardens which boasts an incredible light show set to music.  Truly magical!

What a joy it was to be with family in such beautiful outdoor surroundings.  I am a fortunate woman indeed!

Stay healthy, my friends!  Wear a mask!  Do it for others if not for yourself.

24 Hours in Bristol

Covid-19 Update:  Since I picked back up on blogging, I’ve been sharing brief updates about our travels.  Rest assured, we are taking precautions.  Wearing masks, eating outdoors or take out (or in empty restaurants), and hand sanitizing. 

We are doing our part to keep ourselves and therefore, others, safe!

*****

Bristol Virginia and Bristol Tennessee are two cities that share more than a name.  They share a Main Street!  State Street, which runs through the middle of these two cities is the official state line, and the iconic sign shown below is listed on the National Register of Historic Places.

Bristol, Viriginia was officially designated the Birthplace of Country Music by the U.S. Congress in 1998, and the Birthplace of Country Music Museum, an affiliate of the Smithsonian Institution, attracts 75,000 visitors per year.

Bristol, Tennessee is the home of the Bristol Motor Speedway, a place that hosts a fantastic holiday light show which runs for 8 weeks throughout the holiday season.  Part of the proceeds from the lightshow support the Speedway Children’s Charities.

Recently, Greg and I spent 24 hours in Bristol … both Bristols!

We stayed at The Bristol Hotel, a “Virginia remix of a Tennessee Classic” built in 1925 and recently renovated into a gorgeous boutique hotel.

We enjoyed cocktail hour on the rooftop bar, enjoying the views of the city and of the Appalachian Mountains.

After that, we spent a couple hours winding our way through the lightshow at the Motor Speedway.  What fun!

Brunch at Vivian’s Table the next morning offered delicious food and fun photography.

It was a quick, but super fun getaway in the middle of this busy holiday season.

I truly hope that you are finding some moments of happy during these difficult days.

Stay Safe! Wear a Mask!

The Original Tiny House

My contribution to Monochromia this week. Joe gave this image the perfect title, which I changed from the original title.  This log cabin is part of the Wilderness Road Museum in Newbern, Virginia. The museum and surrounding cabins were closed when I road by last Sunday afternoon, but I believe the cabin was built in the early 1800s.

Monochromia

What does the title have to do with the photo?

Not a darn thing!

Instead, it’s referring to the fact that Joe had to remind me to post this week.  And i’m sliding under the wire with 90 minutes to spare!

View original post

Images of Greensboro

Weekends during the month of June were packed with travel, and my shutter finger worked overtime!

I’m still glowing over my time in Atlanta with my son, exploring public art and architecture, cocktails and cuisine, and green spaces. Then last weekend I was able to spend the weekend in Greensboro, NC to photograph a wedding.  Some of you have visited Karen’s blog about hiking, and she most recently posted about her daughter’s wedding.

I am not a professional photographer, and definitely not a wedding photographer, so I was a bit nervous (to say the least).   I’ve known the bride since she was a young teen, and despite my nerves, it was an honor to try to capture the joy of this fun loving couple.

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The time I had to photograph downtown Greensboro was limited, but I wanted to share a bit of it with you.  Some of these images were taken with my camera, and several with my cell phone.

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The city is a wonderful mix of old and new architecture,

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with a proud and tragic history.

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During my morning walk, I learned that Martin Luther King was scheduled to speak in Greensboro on April 4th, 1968.  He cancelled his visit to stay in Memphis one more night where he was assasinated that same day.  If only …

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Within a few minutes walk from Elm Street, the main drag in downtown Greensboro, is the Isley House.  Built by German immigrants, circa 1845, the log house was moved from its original location when the historical museum took it apart and reassembled it here.

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My morning walk took me past public art,

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and along the train tracks.

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Finally, just a few random images.

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Believe me, a cold beer tasted great after hours spent with the camera.

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Thankfully, my friend Tim was there to help me!

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I’m home for a couple weekends but the next trip in two weeks will be on the motorcycle!

Greenville, SC and The Swamp Rabbit

A road trip to Atlanta to see my son had been on the calendar for months, and I could not wait to get started.

I opted for the truck instead of the motorcycle because most of the 800 mile round trip would have been spent on the interstate. Truth be told, my son is always happier when I am not riding the bike anyway.  Since I was leaving from the office at the end of the day, I decided to stop in Greenville, SC that first night.

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Greenville is known for it’s urban revitalization.  With a focus on public-private partnerships and investment in natural resources, the city is enjoying the success of a 30 yr endeavor.

I arrived in Greenville at 9:30 on Thursday evening, and as I always do when I travel, immediately went on the hunt for a local restaurant and a cold beer.  Local Que was just the place, and I enjoyed a BBQ Quesadilla and this Quest Smoked Porter. Yum!

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The next morning, I was up early to ride the Swamp Rabbit Trail, a 20 mile bicycle / pedestrian trail that follows along the Reedy River.

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Amenities along the trail include lighting, picnic areas, benches, water fountains, restrooms, signage and bicycle racks. Views of the Reedy River are plentiful along the trail.

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The Swamp Rabbit runs right through downtown Greenville and over The Liberty Bridge.

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“At 345 feet long, 12 feet wide and 8 inches thick, the concrete reinforced deck is supported by a single suspension cable”.

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As I stood there on the bridge, attempting to capture the beauty of Falls Park on an overly bright, sunny day, I could feel subtle movement beneath my feet.

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Riding on, I passed this pre-civil war building.  The shell that remains is used for weddings and other events.

6/20/2016 –  I reached out to the Visitor’s Center for more information about this shell building and found out that it is the former Markley Carriage Factory Paint Shop.  It was part of an historic industrial complex constructed between 1850 and 1914.

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The Wyche Pavilion was built in 1904, and when sold, became the first factory for the production of Duke’s mayonnaise.

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I loved the mix of old and new,

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but mostly, I loved the commitment to appropriate growth, history, and nature that city leaders had.

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After a 14.5 mile ride, it was time to shower and get back on the road for Atlanta.

If you are ever in the area, be sure to explore Greenville. My visit was short, but oh so nice, and I look forward to a return visit.

Next Post: Atlanta!

On the Road Again

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A three day trip to Atlanta to see my son, with a brief stop in Greenville, SC, yielded many photos and wonderful memories.

This image is of a pre-civil war era building in Greenville. Only the shell remains and it is used as an event space.

I’ll be back to tell you about it soon, and to catch up on all of your adventures.