STEPHENS CITY, VA — Event Coordinator Jacquetta Owen says November’s holiday festivities don’t have to end with Thanksgiving dinner.
Stephens City is hosting the second annual Hometown Christmas event from 10 am to 6 pm on Saturday, November 30th, along our historic Main Street. Hometown Christmas is planning to use Stephen City’s long-established community spirit and enthusiasm to get behind this wonderful event. The town is pulling out all the stops and event organizers and volunteers believe visitors will enjoy the arts, crafts and food while strolling downtown exploring what our local businesses have to offer.
The event will feature a craft fair, bake sale, music, house tours, a secret Santa shop, a Warming Tree and an appearance from Santa Claus.
To entice people to visit Stephens City’s small businesses on Shop Small Saturday, there will be a business scavenger hunt with prizes. Participants will be given cards that must be checked off by business owners to ensure that participants stopped by their store.
Businesses taking part in the scavenger hunt include Capon Valley Bank, Sophia’s Thrift Shop, Granny’s Restaurant, The Flower Center, The Cloth Peddler, Stephens City Outlet Discount Store, Ed’s Heads Hair Salon, Clem’s Garage, Dragon Fire Comics, Newtown Music Center, High Point Restaurant, Lantz’s Pharmacy and Classics on Main Antiques. Each business will offer specials during the scavenger hunt.
Scavenger hunt cards are available at any of the participating businesses and may be picked up starting Monday, Nov 25th, although they can only be filled out on Nov 30th. Once the cards have been filled out, they can be deposited in a box at Lantz’s Pharmacy, 5015 Main Street. Two lucky winner cards will be drawn for a $25 gift card.
Jacquetta Owen says Hometown Christmas is a terrific approach in getting people to recognize the benefits of Stephens City’s small town ambiance. Despite inclement weather, last year’s inaugural event was a success with lots of folks going home with unique gifts from the craft show and the experience of visiting newfound businesses. This year, the event expands to include a bake sale and a special shop for kids to purchase gifts for their families.
Other events include:
- Mayor Mike Diaz will be directing a free historic house walking tour at 11 am, starting at The Newtown History Center at 5408 Main Street. Those interested must check in at The History Center 20 minutes before tour time.
- A Warming Tree at Capon Valley Bank where newly donated mittens, gloves, scarves and hats can be clipped to a Christmas tree. The Tree supports Congregational Community Action Project (CCAP).
- A gingerbread house contest, with categories for children 11 and under and one for ages 12 and up. Entries can be brought in starting Nov. 25th but must be in by 5 pm Friday, Nov. 29. The houses must be made of edible ingredients and brought to Clem’s Garage, 5170 Main Street. An application can be picked up at the Stephens City Town Office. Judging will take place Friday night and the houses will remain on display through Hometown Christmas. $25 gift cards will be awarded to top entries.
- A Hallelujah Chorus sing-along at Stephens City United Methodist Church (SCUMC) in the sanctuary at 1 pm directed by Donna Greene and accompanied by David Renner.
- Greeting Cards will be made available for anyone wanting to send an anonymous “Thank-A-Veteran” greeting to military personnel receiving medical services in Martinsburg. A volunteer will take greeting cards to the Martinsburg VA Center on December 15th. The cards will be located at the Stephens City Town Office, Capon Valley Bank and SCUMC.
- A Secret Santa shopping area at SCUMC from 10 am to 2 pm, where children of any age can purchase gifts for friends and family for $1 to $5 (the gifts will be wrapped and tagged by Little Elf).
- A Bake Sale at SCUMC to support the youth mission trip next summer.
- Shenandoah Valley Chorus performs at 2 pm in the SCUMC sanctuary.
- A Stephens City Volunteer Fire & Rescue Santa will be available for children to share their Christmas lists at the Newtown Commons from 2 – 4 pm, then after a break, will return on a fire truck to light the tree at 6 pm. The Town Office will provide hot chocolate and cookies. Camp of Faith Church in Stephens City will sing Christmas carols.
- A craft fair will take place at Trinity Lutheran Church on the corner of Main and Fairfax streets. There will be signs to direct shoppers.
For more information, contact Stellar Seven over 70 Award winner and Hometown Christmas Event Coordinator Jacquetta Owen at email@example.com.
Note: Stephens City is a remarkable community because Main Street has retained its small-town character over two centuries of progress and expansion. Development and growth in Stephens City has been small-scaled and well-managed. As a result, the town has a very high degree of historical integrity that will continue to be prominently featured through ongoing renewal and revitalization.
Warren County Middle School gifted and talented program students showcase their projects
Warren County Middle School students in the gifted and talented program displayed their presentations for parents and friends this week during a special showcase evening. Teacher Zach Logan welcomed guests and shared a few details about the students progress so far this year. Projects ranged from the Magic of Disney to interesting facts about New Zealand with several biographies in between! Great job by all of the students! Watch this video to see a few friendly faces and hear from Mr. Logan:
Belle Grove decorated for the holidays and open for touring December 6-30, 2019
Belle Grove Plantation is decorated for the holidays and will be open for touring from Friday, December 6, through Monday, December 30, 2019. Each room was decorated by a local Garden Clubs with the theme of “All Creatures Great and Small.”
“Belle Grove is celebrating the animal kingdom this year because it has always been a place that has included animals, from its more than 200-year history as a farm, to encouraging pollinators in the garden, to hosting the U.S. Border Collie Handler Association’s National Finals again in 2020,” said Kristen Laise, Executive Director.
Guided house tours are offered Monday-Saturday from 10 a.m.-4 p.m. with tours beginning at quarter past each hour (first tour at 10:15 a.m. and last tour at 3:15 p.m.) and on Sunday 1-5 p.m. (first tour at 1:15 p.m. and last tour at 4:15 p.m.). On Friday and Saturday evenings 4-8 p.m. visitors are welcome to take self-guided tours, the Manor House will be lit by candlelight, and there will be live music in the Parlor from 6-8 p.m. All guests are invited to enjoy spiced tea and cookies as part of their house tour admission. Belle Grove will be closed on Christmas Eve and Christmas Day and will close for the winter on New Year’s Eve.
The schedule for live holiday music on Friday and Saturday evenings will be:
- Friday, December 6, 6-8 p.m., Allen Dec, Happy Harper
- Saturday, December 7, 6-8 p.m., Soprano Deborah Balcom
- Friday, December 13 and Saturday, December 14, 6-8 p.m., Sweet Grass, Traditional Carols
- Friday, December 20, 6-8 p.m., Winchester Celtic Circle
- Saturday, December 21, 6-8 p.m., Flutist Elizabeth Dalton & Guitarist Jason Perry
- Friday, December 27, 6-8 p.m., John Tole, Evergreen Shade, Period Music
- Saturday, December 28, 6-8 p.m., Winchester Celtic Circle
The Little Garden Club of Winchester decorated the Manor House’s front porch and hall to welcome visitors as they arrive. The Massanutten Garden Club’s decorations in the Parlor compliment the 12-foot Norway Spruce Christmas tree donated by John and Judith Tole of Evergreen Christmas Tree Farm in Woodville, Virginia. Hawthorne Garden Club’s decorations are in the Library and Winchester/Clarke Garden Club adorned the Day Sitting Room. Glen Burnie Garden Club decorated in the Plantation Office and Warren County Garden Club decorated the Dining Room. Colonial Garden Club decked the Gold Bedroom and Middletown Garden Club decorated the Nursery. Shenandoah Garden Club of Woodstock festooned the Winter Kitchen and the Northern Shenandoah Valley Master Gardeners Association provided natural decorations in the other rooms of the lower level of the Manor House.
Admission for all tours is $12 for adults, $11 for members of the military, AAA, the National Parks, and individuals 60 and older. Students 6-16 and National Trust for Historic Preservation members are $6. Children 5 and younger are free. Belle Grove members are free of charge as benefit of their membership. Visitors may join Belle Grove and immediately use this benefit at Christmas along with 10% off non-consignment purchases in the Museum Shop.
Visitors will arrive through the Beverley B. Shoemaker Welcome Center in the 1918 Bank Barn, which opened to the public in April 2019. This is now where the Belle Grove Museum Shop is located and it will be open during all touring hours. The Museum Shop carries unique gifts and many products from area artists, artisans, farms, and businesses. The Welcome Center also contains exhibits about Belle Grove and the families who lived here. On the exterior of the Welcome Center guests can see lifelike portraits by local artist Michelle Luttrell of the animals that used to be stalled on the lower level of the barn.
Belle Grove Plantation is a non-profit historic house museum that is a National Trust for Historic Preservation site and a partner in Cedar Creek and Belle Grove National Historical Park. It is located off Route 11 at 336 Belle Grove Road south of Middletown, Virginia. Information on Christmas tours may be found at www.bellegrove.org or at www.facebook.com/BelleGrove.
This week’s showtimes at Royal Cinemas as of December 6th
Are you looking for the full movie-going experience without having to wait in the long lines that often accompany that experience? Then look no further because Royal Cinemas movie theatre is the answer. Get the whole gang together and enjoy a movie! Here is a list of this week’s showtimes at Royal Cinemas as of Friday, December 6:
Ticket prices are as follows:
- Adult: $9
- Child (under 12): $6
- Military: $7
- Student (college): $7
- Senior: $7
- Matinees, All Seating: $6
Naughty or Nice: Triple Feature | Dec. 7 & 8 @ 10am
Christmas Classics: “Die Hard” | Dec. 11 @ 7pm
Other movies coming soon to Royal Cinemas:
- “Jumanji: The Next Level”
- “Star Wars: The Rise of Skywalker”
- “Spies in Disguise”
- “My Spy”
An invitation for you to honor George Washington
You are invited to the Second Annual Patriots Dinner honoring our Founding Father, Gen. George Washington, on the 220th anniversary of his death.
Dale Corey and the SAR Honor Guard will open the after dinner program. A short presentation on “George Washington and the Constitution” by Mark Donovan, retired Army officer, will be followed by stories by the Liberty Man – “Young George, the Virginia Boy who became the Father of his Country.” Master James McFadden will recite a portion of the General’s farewell address to his troops. The McFadden Girls will perform an original dance prepared especially for this occasion. We will close the evening by all singing Christmas Carols led by the McFadden Girls.
- When: December 19, 2019
- Where: Wayside Inn, Middletown, Virginia
- Time: 6:00 p.m.
- Cost: $25 (adults) | $15 (children 6-15) | Free for children under 6 who share a plate. Plus tax.
- Buffet Menu: Peanut soup, Fish, Turkey, and Ham. Three Sister’s Vegetables (squash, corn, beans), Sweet Potatoes, Bread.
Dessert will include fruitcake and ice cream.
Tea and coffee will be available.
- Dress: Period Dress is optional. Guests and reenactors are encouraged to wear Colonial dress. Color Guard members will come in uniform.
Come and enjoy short stories of the American Revolution, group singing of carols our forefathers would have known, and most importantly don’t miss this opportunity to enjoy colonial food and great fellowship.
For Reservations and to make payment by December 14, contact Inn Keeper Becky Reeves at 540-869-1797. Be sure to RSVP and make payment early as there are only 85 seats set aside for this event.
For further information, contact Larry Johnson at 540.454.4129, or email firstname.lastname@example.org.
First ever Turkey Egg Hunt a big success
It’s beginning to look a lot like Christmas
On Saturday, November 30th, the annual Christmas tree lighting took place at the Gazebo in downtown Front Royal. This year there was a special treat: the Front Royal Independent Business Alliance (FRIBA) unveiled the community LOVE Letters.
Our camera was there to capture the event! Enjoy and Merry Christmas:
Our reporter Roger Bianchini walked down Main Street and around the Gazebo to share these photos with us: