Top Ten Spooky Places to Visit in Richmond 17 Oct 2013, 7:48 am
Every day is Halloween in Richmond! A city so steeped in history it can’t help but have a certain “spirit” that pervades almost every square city mile. Try walking down the cobblestone paths of Shockoe Slip or the time capsule-esque streets of Church Hill on any misty, purple-skied day and tell me you don’t feel a palpable sense of otherworldly eeriness that arouses a light shudder. The following are the top ten places in Richmond where you can feel that chill of Halloween – and local historical lore – up your spine.
1. St. John’s Church – St. John’s Church, the oldest church in the city of Richmond, is famed for serving as the location for Patrick Henry’s speech “Give me liberty or give me death!” It’s also a hauntingly beautiful final resting place of many of Richmond’s upper crust, including Declaration of Independence signer George Wythe, Chief Justice John Marshall, and politician Henry Clay. A few near and dear to one of the great melancholy poets of all time, Edgar Allen Poe, are also buried here: his mother Elizabeth Arnold Poe and his alleged fiancé at the time of his death, Elmira Shelton. This Halloween, give yourself a slight fright – and an education – with one of the Church’s graveyard tours.
2. Hollywood Cemetery – Hollywood Cemetery is one of the most striking, tranquil places to visit in Richmond, drawing visitors for its views of the city. And like St. John’s Church, many of Richmond’s and Virginia’s most notable figures are buried there, along with hundreds of others who have made their mark on the city big or small. Hollywood Cemetery is to Richmond what Bonaventure Cemetery is to Savannah – it’s a decadent landscape, with ornate headstones, mausoleums, lush arbors, and decorative wrought iron gates – all of the makings of the ideal Halloween haunt.
3. Byrd Park Pump House – Built in 1882, the Pump House is the second oldest water pumping station in Richmond. The second floor of the Victorian Gothic structure also once featured a dance floor, which triggers Hitchock-ian visions of the merry widow waltz, where well-heeled Richmonders obliviously danced the night away. In the Alfred Hitchcock film “Shadow of a Doubt,” a line that Uncle Charlie (played by Joseph Cotton) utters about “Are they human?” – or something else – springs to mind when I think of the faded, spooky spirit of the Pump House at Halloween. Rent the film, then go visit the Pump House and you’ll know what I’m talking about.
4. Byrd Theatre – The Byrd Theatre is a Richmond treasure, and if you haven’t donated some dough to help restore the building back to its heyday, then you really need to open up your pocketbook and give. But wherever there is a Wurlitzer organ being played, it automatically conjures up a certain ominous feeling, as if you’re an extra in a silent German horror film from the 1920s. The theatre was apparently inspected by ghost hunters a few years ago, in search of a long-time former theatre manager who may or may not still haunt the building.
5. Monumental Church – 1224 E. Broad Street downtown was once the site of the Richmond Theatre. At that location, more than 200 years ago, a deadly, fast-moving fire broke out, burning the theatre to the ground, killing nearly one-sixth of those in attendance. The embers were replaced by Monumental Church, built in 1814, and now serving as a memorial to those who died. The fire was considered one of the biggest urban disasters of its day, drawing international attention. In a crypt in the church’s basement lie the remains of those who lost their lives in the fire.
6. Governor’s Mansion – Former governors and gubernatorial staff reportedly have seen the ghost of a young woman in a white gown who lurks the Executive Mansion. Gov. Phillip W. McKinney, who served in the early 1890s, was one of the first to spot the apparition. According to the Associated Press, even Tim Kaine has admitted to “paranormal experiences” while living there.
7. The Lost City of Richmond – So you’ve never heard of the Lost City of Richmond? Well that’s the way they liked it back in the day. Top secret. Interest in the backstory of this urban facsimile located near Richmond International Airport on the “Elko Tract” has been sparked by local historians and keepers of urban legends for years. The story goes that a “fake” city and airfield were created during World War II to protect the “real” ones against Nazi enemy air raids – Richmond would be blacked out and the decoy city and airfield would draw the warfare. After the military base was decommissioned and returned to the government, plans called for building state mental health facilities on site – infrastructure was put in place, but the development never happened. All that’s left are remnants . . . fire hydrants, paved streets, a water tower, a sewage system, now repossessed by nature and a virtual ghost town.
8. James River – The James is the heart of the city’s recreation, where sun bathers, nature enthusiasts, and kayakers go to have some peace. But no doubt the river holds many secrets below its depths. Any quiet, cool October evening spent on the river’s banks while listening to the water rush by endlessly can give you the chills. Some of the river plantations below Richmond, such as Edgewater, a Bed and Breakfast in Charles City that was featured on “Ghost Hunters,” can give flesh to the spirits that haunt the James if you want to take a guided tour.
9. Chimborazo Park – Between 1861 and 1865, more than 78,000 ailing and injured soldiers were treated at the Confederate hospital, formerly located in Church Hill. A medical museum built in 1909 now exists on the property, which also serves as a visitor center for the Richmond National Battlefield Park. Even though the hospital maintained a low mortality rate in its day and was the best of its kind, when you walk the grounds today, you can still sense the history and the collective stories of the sick and wounded rising up out of the soil.
10. Belle Isle – Belle Isle has been the site of many “functions” throughout its history, but most sadly and notoriously, it was the site of a prisoner-of-war camp for Union soldiers during the Civil War. As you might expect, the prisoners suffered in deplorable conditions that left many riddled with disease, and by some historical accounts, thousands died while being held captive – a stark contrast to the recreational playground that it is today. The barren beauty of the river island in the fall, coupled with what we know of its past, make it a natural haunt this time of year.
Hogtober Festival Oct 5 30 Sep 2013, 8:05 am
Hill Yeah! It's HOGTOBER time. Saturday, October 5, 12:00 pm - 7:00 pm. BBQ, Bands, and Beers atop historic Church Hill. This annual FREE fall festival is full of flavor and fun for the whole family.
Barbecue legends Alamo BBQ, Buz & Ned's Barbecue, Extra Billy's BBQ, Halligan's Bar and Grill and P&T Kitchen bring their best to the hill, And new this year, Mosaic will be serving up Vegan Brisket, Pork Crispies (which are fried pig skin rice crispy treats) and Korean BBQ sliders. The King of Pops will have maple bacon and chocolate bacon pops f...or kids of all ages. Featured music by: The Southern Belles, Peoples Blues of Richmond, Long Arms, The Hit List and more. Beers by Brown Distributing-Richmond with special thanks to our presenting sponsor Shock Top.
Bring the kid's too! Face painting, balloon art, pig skin toss, and games will all be part of the piglet pen. Lawn chairs welcome, but leave all coolers, food and beverages at home. No pets allows, but due to the large crowds they are safer at home.
Color Me Rad Richmond 5K 25 Sep 2013, 5:31 am
Don't miss out on the fun this Saturday, September 28th when Richmond hosts the Color Me Rad 5K Run at Kings Dominion. This race is all about fun for the entire family and supports a wonderful cause, Special Olympics. Special Olympics provides year-round sports training and athletic competition in a variety of Olympic-type sports for children and adults with intellectual disabilities, giving them continuing opportunities to develop physical fitness, demonstrate courage, experience joy and participate in a sharing of gifts, skills and friendship with their families, other Special Olympics athletes and the community.
Come out this Saturday to support this cause and have a BLAST doing so!! Don't forget to look out for your favorite Innkeeper! Hope to see you there!
Fashion Feeds the Byrd 23 Sep 2013, 1:12 pmThe Carytown Merchant Association proudly presents: Carytown Fashion Feeds the Byrd (CFFB), a fashion show event set to celebrate the glamorous history of the Byrd Theatre Foundation.
In homage to the theatre’s establishment in 1928, guests dressed in Gatsby-Era garb will gather in this historic theatre to see an evolution of fashion on the historic stage. Carytown boutiques will showcase looks, vintage and modern, to a unique beat by DJ DSD. On September 26, 2013, fashion enthusiasts can expect a roaring atmosphere dolled up in a time when flappers, speakeasies, and bootleggin' were the bees knee’s.
This will be the first annual Carytown Fashion Feeds the Byrd, presented by the Carytown Merchants Association. Models will be dressed in looks styled from ByGones, Champagne & Shoes, Pink, Lex’s, Fab’rik, Alternatives, West Coast Kix, Artisan Shops, Eurotrash, and Glass Boat. Seating will be limited for the comfort of all guests. Tickets will be available in student, general admission, and VIP. VIP will include ideal seating in the first three rows, complimentary bubbly upon entry, and 2 drink tickets.
Seating is limited.
General Admission Advance: $20
General Admission at the Door: $25
Don't miss restaurant week in Carytown this week! 17 Sep 2013, 7:38 am
Carytown Restaurant Week is September 16-21, 2013
"Educate Richmond...With Taste!"
Prepare to entice your taste buds with amazing Carytown dining during "Taste of Carytown" Restaurant Week. Participating Carytown restaurants are offering special pricing and menus to showcase their most popular dishes and raise funds for the Richmond Public Schools Education Foundation.
Visit Richmond’s History in Shockoe Bottom 4 Sep 2013, 12:21 pm
Shockoe Bottom is an evolving industrial neighborhood that is home to Richmond's premiere restaurant and nightclub district. The neighborhood is located immediately east of the central business district and Interstate 95. Lying in the shallow valley adjacent to the James River, Shockoe Bottom served as a hub for industrial enterprises throughout much of the late 19th and early 20th centuries.
Currently the area known as Tobacco Row located within the neighborhood is experiencing a boom in loft apartment and condo construction from previously abandoned tobacco warehouses (hence the name).
The Canal Walk has also managed to creep its way into the southern portion of the neighborhood with plans to expand it the length of Tobacco Row. Shockoe Bottom continues to prove to be one of the City's most progressive and trendiest neighborhoods. Only a few minutes from The One Bed and Breakfast, Richmond's Shockoe Bottom has history, tourism and great dining for our guests!
RVA Wake N' Sun Fest This Weekend at Rocketts Landing 28 Aug 2013, 5:53 amDon’t say there’s nothing to do in RVA this Labor Day Weekend, because the brand new RVA Wake N’ Sun Fest is bringing food trucks, music and water sports to the James River this Labor Day Weekend. The first ever RVA Wake N’ Sun Fest will be held Sunday, Sept. 1 at Rocketts Landing. Hosted by Fisher Budd Ventures, the same people who’ve done RVA Fashion Week for the past five years, organizers say they’ve been thinking about hosting a festival like this for years. A fun, active lifestyle festival that combines music and food trucks with the river, water sports and skateboarding. “Our overall goal is to draw more awareness [to Rocketts Landing],” says organizer Jimmy Budd. “With a lot of the festivals we’ve been to, there haven’t been extracurricular things going on. That’s why we wanted to have it on the water, to have rentals and the cool experience of being on the river. Follow the link for details about the festival. Hope to see you there!! http://www.richmond.com/events/article_1b3678de-0b67-11e3-9c5e-001a4bcf6878.html
Highlighting a Local Favorite 26 Aug 2013, 10:57 am
No trip to Richmond is complete until you have visited the City Diner. Located for years at 2237 West Broad Street, The City Diner is a must for great breakfast fixin’s. Historically, the City Diner has been open daily from 6AM – 2PM, but recently this great establishment announced it will now be serving dinner. During a visit to the City Diner, you’ll rub shoulders with a great cross-section of Richmond locals – Grandpa’s, Grandma’s, Mom’s, Dad’s, office workers, city workers, all the way to grandkids. Don't miss it...you're sure to love it!
Rams vs Rams in Richmond Tonight 2 Feb 2013, 12:34 pm
VCU hits the court tonight looking to close out the first half
of its Atlantic 10 slate with at least a share of the top spot in
the league when it hosts Fordham on Homecoming Weekend. The Black
& Gold are looking for their second straight win and 15th in
their past 17 games.
Tonight is the first meeting between these two programs. While it may be the first game at the Siegel Center for Fordham, it's not for its third-year head coach Tom Pecora, who was the head man at Hofstra for nine years. Pecora enters this evening winless in seven trips to the Stu.
The Verizon Wireless Arena at the Stuart C. Siegel Center boasts quite a home-court advantage for the Black & Gold with VCU compiling a 173-29 record during the 13-year history of the building. Tonight's Homecoming game with Fordham is a Gold Out. Fans are encouraged to wear all the gold
The Gold Out is one of fans favorite promotions every year because it’s VCU’s most vibrant color. It looks fantastic on TV and creates an intimidating backdrop for the opposition.
VCU Rams vs Richmond Spiders Tonight at 7pm 24 Jan 2013, 8:37 am
The #19 VCU Rams look to make it 14 straight wins as they face the Richmond Spiders in a conference showdown tonight at 7pm.
Virginia Commonwealth (16-3) prides on their “havoc style” defense as they are currently ranked #1 in the nation in steals. Shaka Smart has done a great job leading this team to success as they have emerged 4-0 in Atlantic-10 play. Last game the Rams won 90-63 dominating Duquesne from start to finish.
Richmond (12-7) evened out in A-10 conference play after sustaining back to back losses to La Salle and #9 Butler. The Spiders countered their losses with a solid 81-61 victory over Charlotte. The Spiders are currently 2-2 in conference play after beating Rhode Island in their opener. Richmond is 10-1 at home this season.
The VCU Rams are on a 13 game winning streak and should bring their A game as they face their crosstown conference rivals.