The Piedmont Virginian's Blog

Serving and Celebrating America's Historic Heart

Author: Morgan Hensley (page 1 of 3)

A Great Month for Local Art

This February features several great opportunities to see the work of local artists, all of whom capture the ineffable beauty of this region and then share it with us, adding to our understanding of this gorgeous region.

Ode to Young Hare by Trish CroseOn Friday, new exhibits open at Piedmont Virginia Community College. “Saints and Angels,” a watercolor series by Trish Crowe is inspired “by the terrain that surrounds her Madison County home, Crowe’s work depicts fields, farms and the animals within. Rendered with her signature strong lines and vibrant colors, the works evoke the energy and beauty of nature.”

Also on display is work by other artists in the “Firnew Farm Artists’ Circle,” of which Crowe is the founder and one of the 35 members in the artistic collective. The gallery features works by John Berry, Leslie Barham, Tina Wade, and many others.

Opening Reception Friday, Feb. 12, 5-7 p.m.

Next week, the 5th Annual Art of the Piedmont event features local fine art, an auction, food, drink, and entertainment. All-you-can-eat hors d’oeuvres from the Goodstone Inn and drinks sponsored by the Piedmont Fox Hounds add to a night of art appreciation and community outreach, as the event benefits Middleburg Montessori School.


The event takes place at the Middleburg Community Center, February 19, from 5:30 – 7:30 p.m. Tickets, further information, and a full list of contributing artists and their biographies are available on the AotP’s website:

Art by: Trish Crowe | Ode to a Young Hare

1796573_10202889919310186_4960203201090092007_nMorgan Hensley is a recent graduate of William & Mary where he studied English and creative writing with an emphasis on poetry. He is the Assistant Editor of the Piedmont Virginian and enjoys writing about music and the arts.

Calendar for PV Newsletter, week of 2/8/16

“Convenience” at Stage Door Productions (Fredericksburg), FINAL WEEKEND. A musical by Gregg Coffin. “Convenience” is a musical about family, the ties that bind, and the ones we struggle to break. A mother and son learn from their broken past that the promise of a better future is always present, if not elusive.

Hairspray Douglas Graham:Loudoun Now 2

“Hairspray,” presented by Loudoun Centre Theatre, at the Franklin Park Arts Center (Purcellville), FINAL WEEKEND. The big musical hit that will sweep you away to 1960’s Baltimore. Queen-sized teen Tracy Turnblad turns her passion for dancing into a spot on the local TV dance program. Transformed into an overnight teen celebrity, Tracy teaches 1962 Baltimore a thing or two about integration and fair

Pianist Emile Pandolfi, at the Louisa Art Center (Louisa), Fri., Feb 12. Emile performs lush arrangements of standards, Broadway, a dash of classical and new gems as part of a special Valentine’s Day show. Joining Emile’s musical stylings is talented guest vocalist Dana Russell. All ladies receive a rose.

Thomas Jefferson’s Gadgets, at the Woodland Pavilion, David M. Rubenstein Visitor Center at Monticello (Charlottesville), Sat., Feb. 13. Join Charles Morrill, Monticello guide and woodworker, to hear of Jefferson’s passion for gadgets from folding ladders to orreries. Morrill has replicated a number of such items for Monticello and will have them on hand. Light refreshments provided.

Valentine’s Weekend – Wine and Truffles, at Granite Heights Winery (Warrenton), Sat., Feb. 13. Opened for tastings for a special Valentine’s Day pairing of our wines with our delicious chocolate truffles. Hours are from 1 – 5 p.m. This is the only date we will be open for tastings in February.

Be Mine with Wine: A Special Wine & Dessert Pairing at Keswick Vineyards (Keswick), Sat., Feb. 13. Join us in our wine cellar for this special tasting of Keswick Vineyards wines paired with delicious desserts, then enjoy the romantic setting while savoring a glass of wine by the fireplace on our enclosed porch. $10 for Keswick Vineyards Wine Club Members; $20 for non-members. Please call ahead for reservations (434-244-3341 x105) or email Walk-ins welcome based upon availability.

Waterford Foundation Valentine’s Sweetheart Ball, at Belmont Country Club (Ashburn), Sat., Feb. 13. Dress up and have a ball in 1940s festive finery to celebrate 73 years of preserving Historic Waterford. Champagne, cocktails, sumptuous dinner, silent and live auctions (of highly prized items), followed by dancing in the Grand Ballroom to the Big Band sounds of the 17-piece Martinsburg Jazz Orchestra.

Portraits of a Marriage: James and Dolley Madison, Presidents’ Weekend at Montpelier (Orange), Sun., Feb.14 at 2 p.m. Have you wondered about James and Dolley Madison’s love life? On Valentine’s Day, Hugh Howard, author of Houses of the Founding Fathers and Mr. And Mrs. Madison’s War: America’s First Couple and the War of 1812, will discuss the couple’s private relationship and public partnership. Grand Salon in the David M. Rubenstein Visitor Center.


Starr Hill Presents: Dr. John and the Nite Trippers with Red and the Romantics, at The Paramount (Charlottesville), Sun., Feb 14. Legendary Dr. John is a six-time GRAMMY® Award-winning musician and Rock & Roll Hall of Fame inductee, known throughout the world as the embodiment of New Orleans’ musical legacy. A true icon in American culture, who introduced to the world his unique blend of voodoo mysticism, funk, rhythm & blues, psychedelic rock and Creole roots.

“Love is in the Air” with cellist Amit Peled, at Grace Episcopal Church Concert Series (The Plains), Sun., Feb. 14, from 5 – 8 p.m. Israeli cellist Amit Peled, a musician of profound artistry and charismatic stage presence, is acclaimed as one of the most exciting instrumentalists on the concert stage today. Mr. Peled has performed as a soloist with many orchestras and in such world-acclaimed concert halls as Carnegie Hall and Alice Tully Hall, New York; Salle Gaveau, Paris; Wigmore Hall, London; Kanzerthaus, Berlin; and Tel Aviv’s Mann Auditorium.

Piedmont Landscape Association Annual Seminar, at The Paramount (Charlottesville), Wed., Feb. 17. This event strives to bring gardening enthusiasts and landscape professionals together in an educational setting. Lectures include: “Planting in a Post-Wild World – Creating Resilient and Thriving Landscapes”; “Designing Plant Communities: The Art and Science of Successful Native Planting”; “To Bee or Not to Bee”; “Surround Yourself with Shady Characters.”

Waterloo Bridge Updates



The Piedmont Environmental Council (PEC) hosted a community meeting last Monday (February 2nd) to discuss the prospect of saving the historic Waterloo Bridge–known locally as the Ghost Bridge–which spans the Rappahannock River and links Culpeper and Fauquier County. This past January 15th marked the two-year anniversary of the bridge’s closing by VDOT due to safety concerns. There is still no established group working towards a solution, no comprehensive funding plan, and no commitments. The longer the structure sits there, the further it falls into disrepair. Eventually the bridge will exceed the possibility of restoration, at which point VDOT is likely to demolish the historic bridge and build a new, more expensive concrete one in its place.

According to PEC staff, Monday night’s meeting at the Orlean Fire Hall had a good turnout. Approximately 45 people attended, including Supervisor Mary Leigh McDaniel, representatives from Concerned Culpeper Citizens and members of the Mosby Heritage Area Association. PEC’s presentation covered the timeline of what’s happened since October 2013–when VDOT first brought up the need to look at the Waterloo Bridge–to when VDOT stated that rehabilitation was an achievable goal last year to the current lack of progress on the bridge’s rehabilitation. The meeting ended with a call for continued pressure on VDOT and local and state representatives. Attendees left energized, ready to take action, and many even bought yard signs that read, “Save Waterloo Bridge.”

Visit to see how you can help save the Ghost Bridge!

An Art Exhibition to Remind Us of Warmer Days

Line Dance

“Line Dance” by Peter Corbin

“In the midst of winter, I found there was, within me, an invincible summer,” the dour existentialist Albert Camus once wrote. This sentiment bears repeating. The heaps of snow Jonas left behind are melting, warm sunny days have mounted a counterattack, and Punxsutawney Phil recently voiced his support of an early springtime platform.

"Broad River Redfish"

“Broad River Redfish” by Peter Corbin

Together these signs point towards the coming spring. These hints are tantalizing; we close our eyes and imagine a warm breeze, only to open them and find ourselves in the car with the heat blowing out at gale-force velocities.

There is a cure for these seasonal delusions: art.

The National Sporting Library and Museum in Middleburg opened a new exhibit January 30th. “Line Dance–The Art of Fly Fishing” features the work of angler and painter Peter Corbin.

"Ligonier Point" by Peter Corbin

“Ligonier Point” by Peter Corbin

“How do you start a painting? Go fishing. Experience the awe. See the fish, the land, and the seascape. Take notes with your mind, camera, or sketch book. Gather all the information you can in every way you can,” Corbin says.

His works capture the ocean’s vibrant blues, the warmth of a cloudless sky, the excitement of reeling in a gleaming striped bass. His works show the influence of the Hudson River School, and capture the intensity of Winslow Homer’s seascapes.

For more information, check the National Sporting Library and Museum

1796573_10202889919310186_4960203201090092007_nMorgan Hensley is a recent graduate of William & Mary where he studied English and creative writing with an emphasis on poetry. He is the Assistant Editor of the Piedmont Virginian and enjoys writing about music and the arts.

January 29: Local Breweries Add New Beer on Tap for a Great Cause

kerris cure

Just weeks after welcoming his son Lance into the world, Matt Rose, brewmaster and owner of Forge Brew Works in Lorton, lost his wife Kerri to cancer.

The Belgian beer enthusiast and former aerospace engineer and his wife were eagerly awaiting the birth of their son when Kerri began to have some problems. What were first deemed complications of her pregnancy turned out to be Stage IV gastrointestinal cancer. The shocked parents-to-be received the news in August, and Lance was delivered safely in September.

The cancer proved too malignant to combat, and Kerri passed away on January 15th.

A fundraising page was made to help with the costs of treatment, with any extra donations benefiting Lance’s education. The page has already raised over $55,000!

Tonight, many local breweries will offer “Kerri’s Cure”: a Belgian pale ale tailored to the Rose’s tastes and with proceeds benefitting the family.

When else will you find a way to sample limited edition beer, visit local breweries, and directly help support a family that is recovering from a loss?

Here is a list of breweries “Kerri’s Cure” on tap tonight:

• Adroit Theory Brewing Company (Purcellville)
• Adventure Brewing Company (Fredericksburg)
• Bad Wolf Brewing Company (Manassas)
• Caboose Brewing Company (Vienna)
• Capitol City Brewing Company (Arlington and DC)
• Corcoran Brewing Company (Purcellville)
• Crooked Run Brewing (Leesburg)
• Fair Winds Brewing Company (Lorton)
• Forge Brew Works (Lorton)
• Heritage Brewing Company (Manassas)
• Lost Rhino Brewing Company (Ashburn)
• Mad Fox Brewing Company (Falls Church)
• Ocelot Brewing Company (Dulles)
• Old Bust Head Brewing Company (Warrenton)
• Old Ox Brewery (Ashburn)
• Ornery Beer Company (Woodbridge)
• Port City Brewing Company (Alexandria)
• Spencer Devon (Fredericksburg)
• Tin Cannon Brewing Company (Gainesville)
• Pro Re Nata Farm Brewery (Crozet)

1796573_10202889919310186_4960203201090092007_nMorgan Hensley is a recent graduate of William & Mary where he studied English and creative writing with an emphasis on poetry. He is the Assistant Editor of the Piedmont Virginian and enjoys writing about music and the arts.

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