A Winter Escape to the Greenbrier

A Swedish massage at the famed resort is only a train ride away. The multiple restaurants, casino and massive parlor fireplace will keep you warm and entertained.

Kitty’s Gift of Camelot

The scene looked very familiar. There she was, biographer Kitty Kelley on NBC's "The Today Show," managing to look elegant in black with pearls, blonde hair, while being interviewed about her latest book by current co-host Savannah Guthrie this Tuesday. It looked familiar because Kelley writes big books about big people that generate controversy and buzz, people like the British Royal Family, the Bush family, Frank Sinatra, Nancy Reagan, Liz and Jackie Kennedy and Oprah Winfrey. Because of all that, it’s only natural that Kelly should be on a morning news show, right up there with the usual mix of the important issues of the day like the quickly mushrooming scandal over the startling resignation of CIA Director General David Petraeus and his mistress, alongside the presence of hunky movie star Bradley Cooper promoting a movie and the British boy rock group One Direction, filled the streets of still-reeling-from-Sandy New York with thousands of fans outside. It was familiar, and then again not. Because the book wasn’t the kind of book Kelley is known for, big, onrushing bestsellers full of bombshell revelations, accompanied by threats of lawsuits and denials. It was something else entirely, a kind of love letter, a gift to his- tory, the nation and our own younger selves. This time the book is “Capturing Camelot,” subtitled “Stanley Tretick’s Iconic Images of the Kennedys,” authored by Kitty Kelley and published by Thomas Dunne Books and St. Martin’s Press. On the cover: President John F. Kennedy walking outside at the White House with his young son John F. Kennedy, Jr., part of a commemorative Look Magazine cover in December 1963, called “The President and His Son,” photographed by Tretick. The photographs themselves were taken over a period of days in October 1963, only a month before the president’s assassination. They include the iconic, endlessly remembered shot of the two-and-a-half-year-old son of JFK snuggled under the Resolute Desk, while his father seems to be rifling through some papers, although you see the hint of a fatherly smile on his face. “Stanley said, ‘When I shove off, that’s probably the only shot I’ll be remembered for,’ ” Kelley told us in an interview at her office in Georgetown. “Stanley was my friend, my mentor, my buddy, he was brave and a pal ever since I met him,” she said. “When he suffered a series of strokes late in his life, I took care of him and had his power of attorney, and I was with him when he passed away in a home. “See, this all came about with his trunk. Stanley had this trunk, and I asked him what was in it. He sort of grinned and said ‘nude pictures.’ He left it to me. After he passed away in 1999, my husband John said, ‘Aren’t you going to open it? Don’t you want to see what’s in it?” So, we opened it, and it was like a treasure chest of Kennedy memorabilia” There was a PT 109 tie clasp and a lucite box with a gold airplane that was given to those people who had flown with him on the Caroline during the harrowing, exciting and historic 1960 campaign for the presidency against Richard Nixon. There were signed pictures, campaign buttons and bumper stickers.” Eventually, with all the material in the trunk and elsewhere—including an oral history made by Tretick for the Georgetown Public Library—Kelley decided to do the book. All her profits from it will go to the D.C. Public Library Foundation. It is, as noted, not a Kelley book in the sense of what anybody who knows only the Kelley books knows about her. In some ways, there are similarities—looking at the pictures of crowds reaching out wildly to touch JFK during the campaign and well as during RFK’s campaign. You can see the beginnings of the idea of political leaders as part of an emerging celebrity culture. Kelley’s writing in this book puts the gifts she displayed in her best-selling biographies to good use. She moves the book along with her storytelling gifts. Her writing is the engine of the book, and it’s a thoroughbred engine of telling tales, illustrating and illustrative. “He was my friend, he was a photographer, a cranky breed, sometimes,” he said. “Sometimes, he made me so mad I wouldn’t speak to him for days on end,” she said. In what she called a loving and intended good deed in “the sweet service of friendship,” he sent the Washington Post book critic who had panned her book on Elizabeth Taylor fishheads—mafia style—wrapped in elegant paper in stout defense of Kelley. There was also the occasion when he worked with her on an interview with Frank Sinatra, Jr., who had whispered to her that he knew where Jimmy Hoffa was. “Here was Stanley, shooting like the pro he was, unobtrusively, when suddenly he jumped in and said ‘Well, out with it, man. What the hell happened to Hoffa?’ ” In the book, and in person, Kelley tells the story. “Sinatra reared back as if he’d been shot.” The upshot was that he bolted out of the interview because of Tretick’s shouting. She never got her answer, and Sinatra had denied ever doing the interview. “That’s where Stanley saved the day—he shot a picture of me with pencil and notebook, talking with Sinatra. It was the proof. But I was furious, my God, I was mad at Stanley.” In her office, which is filled with her books and posters, a place that has a kind of quiet, gentle and genteel atmosphere, she obviously loves telling stories about her friend Stanley. In any conversation with Kelley, her love of Georgetown as place, idea and home also comes through—“Stanley when he came over said that’s the Brennan (Supreme Court Justice William Brennan) house. ‘It still is,’ I told him.” This is, as she said, a kind of love letter, an homage to Tretick, a man with a craggedly handsome face and eager eyes which seem to fulfill legendary photographer Walker Evans’s admonition: “When you go out in the world, go out with hungry eyes.” When she talks about the book, about the Kennedys (and it should be remembered that one of her first subjects was Jackie Kennedy, herself), about the pictures in the trunk, old friends and losses, you get a real appreciation of the rich treasures of history that are “captured” in this book. It’s not just Camelot, frozen in warmth and energy, but ourselves over time. When Kelley met Tretick, a veteran UPI and Look Magazine photographer in his day, she was working on a book about Elizabeth Taylor, and he apparently had some anecdotal information about Liz and Dick. There is a picture of them in the East Room of the White House in 1982, preened over by chandeliers, Kitty in curls, Stanley with big, black eyebrows, a “Hi, there” smile on his face. A lot has changed just about everywhere you look. Kelley, in the process of chronicling uniquely and with great, heart-blasting originality the lives of the biggest celebrities, leaders and players in the world, became a celebrity herself, the object of prying eyes, and public resentments, a status she still seems not entirely comfortable with. She has always had courage—a quality she shared with the Korean veteran and marine Tretick and friends like the pugilist and actor Tom Quinn—under fire, but she has endured losses, like everyone else, and those uniquely hers. It’s easy to tell she’s still in shaken mourning over the death of her second husband Jonathan E. Zucker, M.D., from a heart attack in late December 2011. “He was the love of my life,” she will tell you, and you could see that if you saw them out together. Singly, they were both impressive people with unique gifts and bearing— together, out and about as a couple they lit up a party, brightened up a room like a high-energy candle and flower setting. The book has Kelley’s energetic writing. It brings to life not only Camelot but also the man who captured it with his lens. Tretick had a warm connection to the Kennedys which continued after JFK’s death through Bobby and Jackie. He had an exclusive connection through Look magazine. In his last years, in which Kelley took care of him, she got John Kennedy, Jr., who was then editor of George Magazine and 37 years old, to sign a copy of the famous under-the-desk picture that she brought to his room. In July 1999, Tretick took has last breath with the television in his room showing images of the search for John Kennedy, Jr.’s body near Cape Cod. “Days later,” she writes, “John Kennedy, Jr., was buried at sea and Stanley’s ashes were placed in the Columbarium at Arlington National Cemetery not far from the Kennedy grave sites and the glow of the eternal flame.” Tretick was 77 when he died. The book is also a loving ghost story—memories and losses are on display here. The book is dedicated to Kelley’s husband “who made dreams come true.” It is a pane to the gifts of Tretick, his work fully and richly on display. More than that, it is, of course, about “capturing Camelot,” the times of our lives, the days of glory for wire services, daily newspapers and weekly picture magazines like Look and Life, the Kennedys alive in the cold memories of November, in the streets of Georgetown. In the end, “Capturing Camelot” is a gift book, a history book, a picture book with marvelous stories. Mostly, it’s a gift to all of us. [gallery ids="101061,137070,137049,137065,137060,137056" nav="thumbs"]

Gracious Weddings in the Virginia Countryside

` Tucked away between the Blue Ridge Mountains and the nation’s capital, along dirt roads and country curving streets, lies a secret garden of green pastures growing local produce, freshly painted farms with white picket fences and acres of vineyards with large succulent grapes and tasting rooms filling visitors’ glasses with the latest and greatest new wines. Hidden in these foothills are also lists of wedding venues, vendors and anxious brides hoping to secure their spot in peak season at the pavilions located here. Say goodbye to the destination weddings on sugar white sandy beaches in the Caribbean and hello to the horses and historical lands in the country side of Virginia. There is something to be said when a small town stubborn girl from the rocky coast of southern Maine who doesn’t think anything is more pristine and precious than her local beach town in New England begins to have second thoughts when driving along Loudoun County. This area may lack the sound of crashing waves, but it is smothered with kindness, tranquility and nature that could de-stress any city slicker. This area is truly the spot where fairy tale weddings come alive and bride’s dreams come true. Allow yourself to explore the opportunities each season will bring to your special day in a handful of options ranging from bed and breakfasts and farms to vineyards and mansions. The Goodstone Inn & Estate ------ Location: Middleburg, Va. Cost: $23,935- $30,174 Contact: Emily Tabachka 540 687 3092 Emily@Goodstone.com Goodstone.com This bed and breakfast is more than a place to rest your head, but an inn where you will be swept away. With 265 acres of open fields and cottages with rooms filled with original antique furniture and four post beds, a bride can live like a princess for a weekend with up to 150 friends and family members. Elegant weddings over the meadows on this estate are hosted poolside by the façade of an old mansion with overgrown ivy and gardens. Rehearsal dinners and receptions can be held outdoors or inside at the Carriage House, where guests can enjoy local food and wine designed by executive chef William Walden. Wherever you choose to say your vows, a picturesque view of the country side is sure to be in sight. Why we love it here: The Goodstone Inn & Estate offers in-house catering and planners to help make your event exclusive and as easy to plan as possible. The Fox Den at Briar Patch ------ Location: Middleburg, Va. Cost: $10,000 + tax Contact: Charlotte John 703 327 5911 Info@BriarPatchBandB.com BriarPatchBandB.com This historical bed and breakfast has unlimited possibilities for today’s bride. On 47 acres of property dating back to 1805, the guests stay the weekend to enjoy family, friends, Virginia wines and mountain views. Rehearsal dinners, receptions and ceremonies can all be accommodated for groups up to 200 people (and your pets are welcome, too). Whether you choose to say “I do” outside or in, Briar Patch has several options to choose from. Dance the night away in the Fox Den, a spacious hall filled with white linen tables, floor to ceiling windows and plenty of room to mingle. Have your first kiss by the shaded trees along the property or choose to have your event poolside in the warmer season. Why we love it here: When you book your wedding here, you’re given access to it all and have the option of getting married at just about any spot on the property. The Pavilion at The Farm at Broad Run ------ Location: Broad Run, Va. Cost: $1,750 Contact: Michelle DeWitt 703 753 3548 ShellyD96@aol.com TheFarmAtBroadRun.com Greenhouses, vegetable patches, fresh fruits and animals graze this 72-acre family-owned farm located just a short trip down a classic gravel driveway. At first glance, this may look like an unexpected place for a grandiose affair, but look again. The family recently opened “The Pavilion” to host events including weddings, which owner Michelle DeWitt said have often been over the top. The contrast between the relaxed and comfortable atmosphere of the farm mixed with an elegant white gown has been simply majestic here and word is spreading. Events are booking frequently and we’re not surprised. The Farm at Broad Run offers a solely outdoor wedding with a covered pavilion protecting a large, outdoor, artisan stonework kitchen with granite countertops, stainless steel appliances and a grill to allow your chosen caterers to complete a fantastic meal for your guests (and the option of eating produce right from the farm). Why we love it here: A newly built two-bed, two-bath farmhouse with a wrap-around porch and exquisite decor has been placed on the property for the convenience of the wedding party to relax and prepare before the main event. Whitehall Manor ------ Location: Bluemont, Va. Cost: $4,500 - $8,000 Contact: Douglas Armstrong (703) 948- 2999 HistoricWhitehall.com Stepping in to Whitehall Manor is like stepping back in time. This mansion, built in 1790, was once occupied by our first president’s brother, John Augustine Washington, and survived the Civil War’s Battle of Snickersville. A catering company later purchased the property from dairy farmers in the 1990s and has since turned the home in to the ultimate wedding venue (and offering, of course, a gourmet meal for your guests). Brides are given access to the entire first floor of the mansion to prepare prior to the ceremony and to unwind during and after the reception, which takes place in the newly added pavilion built in 2005. This space holds 225 guests comfortably and boasts a large dance floor for those who choose to kick off their shoes and let their hair down after a bit of bubbly. Why we love it here: Your wedding photos will never fail with the mix of historical and modern architecture, green grassy pastures, large trees and views of nearby farms and mountains. The Stable at Bluemont Vineyard ------ Location: Bluemont, Va. Cost: $3,000 - $6,000 Contact: Debbie Zurschmeide Schoeb 540 554 2073 Debbie@BluemontVineyard.com BluemontVineyard.com Off the beaten path and beyond the hustle and bustle you’ll find a vineyard hidden on top a hill with breathtaking panoramic views spanning as far as the Washington Monument. Event planners and coordinators specialize in making your day special and allow you to work with other vendors to perfect your dream wedding. The Stable is one of the largest event facilities in the county holding more than 200 people in a climate-controlled space with stamped cement floors, natural light and original wooden beams from when it was first built decades ago. Step outside the country doors to say your vows and step back in for cocktails on the patio and back in to The Stable for dinner and dancing wherever you choose. Why we love it here: Since I can’t mention the view again (or can I?), I must say the next best thing is that having a wedding on a vineyard means having a wedding with fresh and locally produced wines as well as farm fresh ingredients in all menu items. [gallery ids="100485,117295,117285,117277,117267,117258,117250,117241,117309,117233,117315,117225,117321,117217,117326,117303" nav="thumbs"]

Polo for a Purpose Van Metre Polo Cup

Can one put a price on polo lessons with polo superstar and Ralph Lauren model, Nacho Figueras? (Yes, a lot!) Yet the cause for which Figueras is donating instruction is priceless. On June 18, Salvatore Ferragamo, (Grandson of the famed Italian designer), John Walsh of America's Most Wanted, and Tim Gannon, co-owner of Outback Steakhouse, and other polo greats, will play in the Van Metre Polo Cup. Inaugurated in 2007, the competition will benefit Capital Caring and the new Adler Center for Caring on the Van Metre Campus. The ground-breaking for the state-of-the-art facility in Stone Ridge is scheduled for October 2011. In an age of senseless celebrity from Snoop Dogg to Snooki, true heroes are individuals who care for chronically and terminally ill patients on a daily basis. Capital Caring, with their committed staff and volunteers, provide extensive services to help families cope with illness and loss. Through the generosity of the Adler and Van Metre families, and other donors, patients and loved ones in Loudon County will benefit from Capital Caring's coordinated care. Ashley Van Metre, an accomplished polo player, will play in the match which takes place at Great Meadow in the Plains. Ashley's grandfather, Al Van Metre, a developer and philanthropist, was a longtime supporter of hospice care. With the Van Metre Cup, his legacy continues in a delightful day of polo for a wonderful and worthy cause. Dea Van Metre (Who is chairing the event with her husband Beau) shared thoughts on the polo cup and the new Adler Center for Caring. GTMG: When was the Polo Cup founded? DVM: This will be our fifth year. It is another area to raise funds for a charity that has been important to our family. GTMG: Nacho Figueras has played in the past. What celebrities will be on board this year? DVM: Nacho regrettably had a conflict, but he has been very dedicated to our cause. Tim Gannon, founder of Outback Steakhouse, John Walsh of America's Most Wanted, and the handsome Salvatore Ferragamo will be on the field. GTMG: How did you decide to benefit Capital Caring? DVM: My father-in-law, Al Van Metre, started a sailing regatta over 35 years ago to benefit the cause. While hospice is not particularly glamorous, it is about quality of life. The Adler Center will provide comprehensive care for people in Loudon County. GTMG: Tell us about the new Adler Center on the Van Metre Campus? DVM: The first donation was three million dollars from the Adler Family. Prior to that, our Company executives and my father-in-law donated the land for the facility. We have raised 11.5 million and our goal is 15 million. We have also received in kind donations, including a large donation of electrical equipment. GTMG: How can people help? DVM: We welcome volunteers for the event. There is a tent with sponsored tables and tailgate spaces, as well. Out Back Steakhouse is providing wonderful food at cost. We are grateful for volunteers and for contributions, many of which are from the community. GTMG: Has the event grown considerably in the last five years. DVM: Yes! We have the other side of the field now, so we have over 800 guests. GTMG: You have fabulous silent auction items. Can you tell us what they include? DVM: We have a backyard picnic for one hundred guests donated by Outback Steakehouse. Round trip tickets to Italy with a stay at the Ferragamo Estate, Il Baro in Arezzo, Italy. Two round trip tickets to Argentina or South Hampton for private lessons with Nacho Figueras, and the use of a private jet for up to six people to West Palm Beach or South Hampton. GTMG: How wonderful! Good luck with the event. To make donations to Capital Caring visit CapitalCaring.org or call 800-571-5700. [gallery ids="100000,100001,100002,100003,100004,100005,100006" nav="thumbs"]

2020 Garden Tour Is Shelved

They are gorgeous. Intimate. Grand. Colorful. Hidden. And they will remain so until next May. They are the gardens of the Georgetown Garden Tour,...

Something’s Brewing in Virginia

It’s hard to believe that summer is really winding down. One of the best things about summer dining is pairing a seasonal beer with seafood or barbecue. With fall and Oktoberfest just around the corner, take a look at these breweries and gastropubs in northern Virginia. Interested in making our own homebrew? You’ll find everything you need and more. Beach Brewing Company, Virginia Beach This microbrewery and tap room is open six days a week for hopheads to taste and shop their selection. The husband-and-wife team of Justin and Kristin McDonald have operated the brewery and tasting room. The Hammerhead IPA and Hoptopus Double IPA should provide the hoppy flavor enthusiasts vie for. The SeaDevil Stout is a darker beer to enjoy moving into the fall. Summer is coming to a close, but there are plenty of reasons to get back to Virginia Beach. Beach Brewing Company is located at 2585 Horse Pasture Rd. #204, Virginia Beach, Va. 23453. For more information, call 757-563-BEER or go to www.beachbrewingcompany.com Blue Lab Brewing Company, Lexington Blue Lab Brewing Company is a brewery and tasting room that has the ultimate small town feel. The brewery periodically hosts live musicians and is deeply rooted in its community. Both founders are affiliated with Washington and Lee University. Tom Lovell is the assistant director of alumni affairs and Bill Hamilton is an associate professor of biology. The two are quick to discourage anyone under 21 years old from even thinking of drinking their beer, as they mention on their website. Blue Lab’s chocolate coffee stout uses local coffee beans, chocolate and hops to create a delicious dark beer. Blue Lab Brewing Company is located at 123 South Randolph St., Lexington Va. 24450. For more information, call 540-548-0146 or visit www.bluelabbrewing.com Holy Brew Brewing Company, Leesburg Holy Brewing Company is a rock-and-roll branded brewing company located in Leesburg. Its Honey Blonde Ale, Brown Ale and “Liquid Confession” are distributed around Virginia. Check them out at www.holybrew.com Beer Run, Charlottesville This gastrobpub in Charlottesville is about as full-service as you can get. Serving lunch and dinner Monday through Saturday and a gourmet brunch on Sunday, the restaurant carries hundreds of beers from around the world. The gastropub even sells kegs. Weekly events include Pint Night on Tuesdays, free beer tastings on Wednesdays, free wine tastings on Fridays, and Belgian beer night every Sunday. Beer Run is located at 156 Carlton Rd. Suite 203, Charlottesville, Va. 22902. You can reach the pub at 434-984-BEER or at www.beerun.com Horse & Hound Gastropub, Charlottesville Horse & Hound Gastropub features a gourmet dinner and brunch menu that pairs craft beers with fine dining. The pub offers customers the option of ordering beers in six-ounce glasses to maximize the number of tastings during their meal. Chefs Luther and Brooke Fedora are the founders of the Horse and Hound. Both chefs trained at the Culinary Institute of America. Executive chef Luther Fedora worked for several years in London as a chef, and has served as a sommelier at classic London spots such as the Savoy and Drones. Brooke worked as a pastry chef in Manhattan before the couple moved to Charlottesville in 2003. Fermentation Trap, Barboursville Many of the brewers here began their businesses when curiosity pushed them to brew their own beer at home. With some basic equipment and knowhow, you too can begin crafting your own signature beer. The Fermentation Trap sells starter kits, ingredients and more advanced equipment for making beer and wine. Everything in the store is also available online for those interested in browsing their selection. The website also hosts the GHRUB club—Grapes and Hops Unedited Banter. The club’s website hosts forums, newsletters and podcasts all devoted to the making of beer and wine at home. The Fermentation Trap is located at 6420 Seminole Trail #12, Seminole Place Plaza, Barboursville, Va. 22923. For more information, call 434-985-2192 or visit www.fermentationtrap.com [gallery ids="102474,120592,120585" nav="thumbs"]

The Upperville Colt & Horse Show

I look forward to the first full week of June every year. My colleagues automatically know I will be out of the office that week — on vacation, but not out of town. I’ll be where many horse lovers and enthusiasts will be: in beautiful Upperville, VA, just an hour outside of Washington, at the one and only Upperville Colt and Horse Show. For me, this event is nothing short of a full blown therapy session — but without all the psychobabble. The sights and sounds of the hustle and bustle around the show grounds renew my spirits and senses like nothing else can — the smell of the fresh horse stall bedding, the sound of the farrier’s hammer carefully shaping a horse shoe, and the gentle non-verbal conversation between horse and rider as they make their way through the course. It is truly magical and makes me anxiously anticipate my arrival at the barn every evening to tend to my own horses. Celebrating its 157th year, the oldest horse show in the United States is set to run June 7 through 13. Attracting competitors from all over the United States and abroad, Upperville boasts seven full days of exciting hunter, jumper and breeder competitions. Hunters and Jumpers The term “hunters” refers to horses that participate in the sport of fox hunting, including their manners, ability to jump and how well they maintain a steady pace as they encounter each jump or “fence.” The criteria they are judged upon in the various hunter competitions or “classes” relates to the traits they must demonstrate to be successful in the hunt field. With hunters, it’s all about their style and stride. Some hunter classes also judge the horse’s body structure, which is referred to as its “conformation.” Speed, stamina, and the ability to clear the course obstacles are what count in the various jumper classes. This is no easy feat, considering many of the jumps are three feet six inches to five or more feet tall, with spreads of up to six feet. Unlike the hunter classes, style, pace, and manners are not important, and are not judged. What matters is that horse and rider complete the course in as little time as possible without knocking down any of the obstacles. A Week Under the Oaks This year, the competition begins Monday, June 7 on what many refer to as “locals’ day” at the show, with the majority of hunter classes offered that day restricted to horses owned by residents of counties within a 60-mile radius of Upperville. Compared to the rest of show week, it’s a somewhat quieter day, perfect for kicking back in the newly renovated grandstand and taking it all in as the horses and riders leap through the hunter course under the beautiful and majestic hundred-year-old oaks of Grafton Farm. It’s also a great time for shopping. While some vendors are in the process of setting up their displays for the week, there are many that are already up and running and ready for business. It’s the perfect opportunity to pick up that one-of-a-kind item before it’s scooped up by other shoppers later in the week. A full schedule of hunter classes are on tap for Tuesday, and the action kicks into high gear as the jumper classes begin across the street amid the rolling green terrain of Salem Farm. In the afternoon, the Founder’s Cup, restricted to horses bred and foaled in Virginia, honors the memory of Colonel Richard Henry Dulany — an avid horseman and the driving force behind the establishment of the Upperville Colt and Horse Show. One of the many highlights on Wednesday’s schedule of events is the “Paul and Eve Go as You Please Handy Hunter” class, held in memory of Paul and Eve Fout, two of Virginia’s most prominent and accomplished equestrians. On Thursday, the ponies come out to strut their stuff. Unbelievably adorable and the dream of many little girls, you won’t want to miss these pint-sized equines with over-the-top personalities. Don’t worry if you miss the ponies on Thursday — you’ll have the opportunity to catch them on Friday and Saturday too. The weekend, of course, tends to draw the largest crowds, so plan to come early and spend the day. There’s plenty to see and do, and once you get there, you won’t want to leave soon anyway. Saturday morning features the Cleveland Bay breeder classes, and the ever-so-elegant ladies’ side saddle classes. Come see Upperville’s youngest riders (ages one to six years) make their appearance in the leadline competition on Saturday afternoon. With an adult handler keeping the pony in check, you won’t be able to stop smiling as you watch these young riders — dressed in proper attire, of course — make their way around the ring. On Sunday morning, additional breeder classes are scheduled, including those featuring the Irish Draught breed. The classic sport of carriage driving also takes center stage on Sunday with the Carriage Driving Grand Prix and the Concours d’Elegance. The week-long event culminates Sunday afternoon with the Budweiser Upperville Jumper Classic. Not to be missed, this challenge features many of the top riders in the world. Bring a picnic of your own, or pick up something to eat from the food vendors at the show. Then grab a spot on the lawn overlooking the course and get ready for an exciting, hold-your-breath type of contest amid a colorful and extremely challenging course. It’s the perfect way to end an extraordinary week of competition. The only downside? Well, the show is held only once a year. But, like me, I’m willing to bet you’ll be looking forward to next year’s show before you leave your parking space. For a complete schedule of events and information, check out their Web site at www.upperville.com. Upcoming Events The summer season in hunt country is kicking into full gear. Here’s just a few of the many upcoming events you may want to consider adding to your calendar. Vintage Virginia Wine Festival June 5 and 6, 2010 11 a.m. to 6 p.m. Bull Run Regional Park Special Events Center Centreville, VA www.vintagevirginia.com Magnolias at the Mill Beer Festival June 17, 2010 Magnolias at the Mill Purcellville, VA www.magnoliasmill.com Twilight Polo at Great Meadow Every Saturday through September 18, 2010 6:30 p.m. The Plains, VA www.greatmeadow.org Fourth of July at Great Meadow July 4, 2010 The Plains, VA www.greatmeadow.org [gallery ids="99135,102723,102709,102716" nav="thumbs"]

Summer Wedding Destinations

By Selma Khenissi and Stephanie Green So, you’re engaged. Or, you and your current spouse have decided to renew your vows. Congratulations on this big...
Kentuck Knob.

Fallingwater, Duncan House and Kentuck Knob

Three Frank Lloyd Wright houses are open to the public in Pennsylvania's Laurel Highlands.

Historic Garden Week in Virginia

The Garden Club of Virginia will continue to nurture Virginia’s deeply rooted history during Garden Week, April 16 – 23, showcasing some of the finest properties the state has to offer. For the 78th year, Virginia’s Historic Garden Week will feature dozens of walking tours, winding through privately owned estates and renowned historic landmarks. From 17th century plantations to state-of-the-art gardens, the Garden Club presents a vast array of botanical beauty in over 250 homes and gardens, much of which coincide with restoration work that has been ongoing since Garden Week 1929. Proceeds from the tours of “America’s Largest Open House” have financed the restoration of more than 40 grounds and gardens as the Club strives for conservation and preservation of Virginia’s scenic landscapes. Charlottesville and Albemarle County The area that Thomas Jefferson once called home will be highlighted in a four-day tour featuring historic estates, including Monticello and Jefferson’s University of Virginia. The Morven house and garden, a 7,378-acre estate built in 1820, still holds its 19th century ambiance. Oriental rugs, documentary reproductions and elegant wallpapers keep the estate true to its Jeffersonian era. The grounds are filled with unusual trees including Osage orange, Chinese chestnut, and a dove tree. The gardens boast thousands of tulips, pansies, forget-me-nots, lilacs, wisteria, spireas, deutizia and a rose garden. Owned by the University of Virginia, Morven will be featured on the Historic Garden Tour April 16, 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. Travel to the Farmington neighborhood and stroll through the Periwinkle home and garden owned by Donna and Albert Ernest, evident art lovers who have decorated their home with 18th century décor. A number of paintings line the interior of the home designed by Marshall Wells in 1939. The garden’s two-acre landscape boasts an English-style cottage garden filled with roses and peonies. Eden roses climb up to the dormer windows. An American boxwood garden, formal rose garden and a kitchen garden makes up with a backyard enclosed by apple trees. A small stone chapel, designed by the owners, gives way to a path leading to a secret garden. The Farmington tours take place April 17 and April 18. The Cielo Rosso estate, comparatively modern for the Farmington neighborhood, was built in 2000. The house, inspired by the owners’ Italian travels, features handmade French tiles on the roof and extensive exterior stonework. The three-acre garden is filled with atlas cedars, honey locust, blue cypress and mature cryptomeria trees. An herb garden sits outside the kitchen and a Roman swimming pool occupies the backyard not far from a boxwood garden, sitting below a fish-filled fountain with a vanishing edge that cascades downhill. The garden is open April 17 and 18. Near Farmington is the historic University of Virginia. The University’s Pavilion Gardens, restored by the Garden Club of Virginia, will be featured during Garden Week, along with the University. The Colonial Revival gardens, designed by Colonial Williamsburg landscape architects Alden Hopkins and Donald Parker, are also on the campus. University tours April 19 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. Pavilion Garden tours 10 a.m. and 1 p.m. Jefferson’s lifelong passion for botany can be enjoyed at his Monticello home. The gardens and orchards have been restored to their appearance during Jefferson’s retirement years by the Garden Club of Virginia. Here you can see a vegetable garden that stretches 1,000 feet long, winding flowerbeds, two orchards, two vineyards, and an 18-acre ornamental forest, which resembles the foliage grown by Jefferson himself. Monticello is open daily from 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. with special events April 16- 19. Alexandria George Washington’s Mount Vernon estate and gardens feature a distinctive replica of Washington’s 16-sided barn and displays of his farming tactics. The plantation’s bowling green has been restored by the Garden Club of Virginia. Mount Vernon is open 365 days a year. George Mason’s Gunston Hall Plantation consists of a brick mansion furnished with colonial period décor. The estate was built around 1755 and is open from 9:30 a.m. to 5 p.m. Eastern Shore The Cedar Creek Farm is opening up its three-story home for the first time. The rich wood interior adds warmth to every room throughout the house and beloved hunting dogs lounge on the wide screened porch as Mr. and Mrs. A. Thomas Young welcome visitors to their estate April 16, 9:30 a.m. to 5 p.m. James River Plantations The Brandon Plantation dates back to the beginnings of English settlement. Its beautiful grounds lead from the grand, historic mansion to the James River. Old boxwood and a series of garden rooms are some of the plantation’s featured attractions. Today, the 4,000-acre property functions as a working farm with 1,600 acres still being cultivated. During Garden Week, self-guided tours are offered April 18-23 from 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. Louisa County Fair Oaks’ recently restored house sits atop a hill at the area’s highest point of elevation. Purchased by Mrs. Nancy Daniel in 1997, the house has undergone two major renovations. Osage orange trees, each 150 years old, stand in front of the house. Woodwork on the stairs and most of the flooring is original heart pine. The house is open for the first time April 16, 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. Petersburg Centre Hill Mansion, built in 1823, is now a museum in the City of Petersburg showcasing aristocratic 19th century Virginia. The house has been updated and restored after a number of ownership changes. During the Second World War, the property was a Red Cross headquarters. The museum’s grounds, restored by the Garden Club of Virginia, will be open April 16, 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. Warrenton The Orlean house, a late 18th century stone and clapboard home, sits on a beautifully landscaped park. The woodland garden, bursting with spring bulbs, faces the swimming pool outlined by a rocky hillside. Mr. John Krumholtz and Mr. Kevin DiLallo own the house, of which several barns and servants’ quarters make up the estate. Open April 20, 10 a.m. to 6 p.m. and April 21, 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. [gallery ids="99222,103521,103519" nav="thumbs"]