The Piedmont Virginian's Blog

Serving and Celebrating America's Historic Heart

Category: Horse Events

The Piedmont Weekend Roundup: February 26 – 28

Pouring red wine from bottle into glass with wooden wine casks on background

Fauquier County Wine Tasting & Competition at Airlie (Saturday, Warrenton). Come out and sample the wines of sixteen local vineyards and vote for your favorites in the People’s Choice Wine Competition. Delicious food pairings, prepared by the Airlie Chef, and live music. Please note that, to accommodate more visitors, this year’s wine tastings will be offered during two time periods. All tickets must be pre-purchased.

Riverside Group Show postcard-3 copy-1Art in Its Natural Habitat: An Exhibit of Paintings in a Model Home (Friday, 5-7 p.m., Charlottesville). Interior designer Robin Ellis invites you to celebrate Stony Point Design/Build as well as Charlottesville artists Helen Hillard, Chris Tucker, and Nancy Wallace.

Lighting the Creative Spark lightingthecreativespark(Thursday, Live An Artful Life Gallery, The Plains). This workshop, led by Dr. Celia Im, utilizes the power of music to ignite attendees’ creative potential. By engaging this part of ourselves, we are driven to finish that creative project, sculpt the next stage of our lives, and live in the moment.

Winemaker for a Day: Blending Seminar at Narmada Winery (Saturday, Amissville). Have you always dreamed of being a winemaker? Challenge yourself and your friends at our interactive winemaking seminar. Join our winemaker Sudha Patil and guest speaker Duane Harris for this workshop and experience the excitement of combining both the art and the science that goes into making a distinctive wine! You’ll be sampling and blending cabernet franc, malbec, merlot, cabernet sauvignon, and petit verdot. Once your perfect blend is bottled, teams compete, imbibe, and select the most spectacular wine of the day!

FB_Motown-768x284Motown & More: A Tribute to Motown and Soul Legends (Friday, State Theatre, Culpeper).  An ensemble of today’s most talented artists brings it all back! Vocalists Bryan Fox, Gene McBride, Jeffrey Walker and Shang (each phenomenal in their own right) come together with exquisite harmonies to recreate classics and develop new musical arrangements. Less than a year old, Motown & More has become a popular production in the Baltimore/Washington/Virginia region.

An Evening with Groucho (Sunday, Louisa Arts Center, Louisa). Award-winning actor Frank Ferrante reprises his New York and London hit in this fast-paced hilarious tour-de-force. You will swear legendary comedian Groucho Marx is alive and well and making you laugh. Accompanied by his pianist, the comedy, one-liners, and songs of Groucho Marx make for an all-ages treat!

Six Pack Songwriter Series: An Evening of Central Virginia Songwriting (Friday, The Paramount, Charlottesville). With the goal of allowing audiences to experience a mixture of our best local artists at once, each “Six Pack Songwriter Series” event features 6 artists for one evening of live and local music. This year’s  production welcomes an all-new lineup to The Paramount stage. This year’s roster includes Michael Clem, Ben Eppard, Paulo Franco, Julia Kwolyk, Anne O’Brien, and David Tewksbury, all backed by a live band.

National Theatre Live in HD Presents: “As You Like It” at the Paramount (Sunday, The Paramount, Charlottesville). Shakespeare’s glorious comedy of love and change comes to the National Theatre for the first time in over 30 years, with Rosalie Craig (London Road, Macbeth at MIF) as Rosalind.  With her father, the Duke, banished and in exile, Rosalind and her cousin Celia leave their lives in the court behind them and journey into the Forest of Arden. There, released from convention, Rosalind experiences the liberating rush of transformation. Disguising herself as a boy, she embraces a different way of living and falls spectacularly in love.

Smithsonian at Little Washington Concert Series: Haydn Piano Trios (Sunday, Theatre at Washington, Washington). Pianist Kenneth Slowik is an artistic director of the Smithsonian Chamber Music Society. Violinist Heather Green joined the National Symphony Orchestra in 2005, and became a member of the first violin section in 2007. Cellist James Lee made his debut with the San Francisco Symphony Orchestra at the age of 15. These three come together for a marvelous performance.

2015 90th Gold Cup 1

photo by Doug Lees

“Virginia Steeplechasing: The History and Future of the Sport in the Piedmont” (Sunday, National Sporting Library, Middleburg). This steeplechasing panel discussion is mediated by Robert Banner, President of Great Meadow Foundation. Panelists are Dr. William Allison (Ex-MFH and President and Race Chairman of the Virginia Gold Cup Races), Dr. Alfred Griffin (Ex-MFH and Director of Racing of the Virginia Gold Cup), Will O’Keefe (Race Director of the Virginia Fall Races), and Don Yovanovich (President of the Virginia Point-to-Point). Panelists discuss the history and future of this region’s beloved steeplechasing and equine sports. The audience will have an opportunity to ask questions of the panelists. Also at NSLM currently are the exhibits “Side by Side with Gun and Dog” and “Line Dance: the Art of Fly Fishing.”

“Sunrise, Sunset” (Byrne Gallery, Middleburg). This weekend is the last chance to see this juried show featuring artworks inspired by sunrises and sunsets, bringing joy and warmth to the cold month of February.

“Buddy: The Buddy Holly Story” at Riverside Dinner Theater (Through Mar. 13, Fredericksburg). Starring Todd Meredith as Holly, with the Buddy Holly tribute band, The Rave-Ons, this musical is the true story of the last few years of Buddy Holly’s life, spotlighting his meteoric rise to fame from the moment in 1957 when “That’ll be the Day” hit the airwaves until his tragic death on “The Day the Music Died.” Featuring many of his timeless hits, “Buddy” is a celebration of the life and times of “the young man with the glasses” that captures the unique mixture of innocence, determination, humor, and charm that was Buddy Holly and wraps it all up into a package that has become “The World’s Most Successful Rock-n-Roll Musical.”

Oldest Horse Show in the Nation Celebrates 162 Years: Upperville Colt & Horse Show

The Upperville Colt & Horse Show returns June 1-7, 2015

 UCHS was founded in 1853 to encourage better breeding of horses.  Since that time, thousands of equestrians, horse breeders and spectators have gathered in Upperville each year to admire some of the nation’s most talented horses and riders.

sidebar-left1What began as a one-day show, with only a few breeding classes, has grown into a week-long tradition with classes for children, adults and families. Each year, beneath the oaks at Grafton Farm, more than 1,500 horse and rider combinations compete throughout the week.  The week culminates with the $100,000 Upperville Jumper Classic that draws top riders from around the nation.

pattonThe weekend highlights begins Friday evening with the Markel & Norden Equine Insurance Amateur Owner Hunter Classic and $25,000 Welcome Stakes sponsored by Jim Thompson / Washington Fine Properties and Wiseman & Associates Wealth Management.  Saturday’s highlights include the Ladies Sidesaddle, Leadline and Family classes with the $20,000 USHJA International Hunter Derby, sponsored by Salamander Resort & Spa. The grand finale event is the competitive $100,000 Upperville Jumper Classic held on Sunday, June 7 at 2 pm.

This year, all of the jumper classes, including the Classic, will be held in the all-weather footing jumper ring. There will be bleacher seating and a grass area for the general public, as well as such VIP options at the 1853 Club, a Hunter Riders’ Lounge sponsored by Roger & Thomas Ltd, King Construction Co, LLC & Fenwick Equestrian, and a Jumper Riders’ Lounge sponsored by Charles Owen, Inc.

UHS-Teresa Ramsay

Courtesy Upperville Horse Show

Entertaining events on Sunday, beginning at 10 a.m., include the Jack Russell Terrier Races sponsored by Nutro, a Mars Petcare Brand, and other canine demonstrations.  Bring the family, for a day of great horse sport, browse and shop the food and retail vendors, and enjoy a day in some of Virginia’s most beautiful countryside.

Gates open at 8 a.m. throughout the week.  Admission is $10 per person. Children under 12 are no charge when accompanied by an adult. Bring a picnic or purchase food on the grounds. A variety of food vendors and retailers will be on site.

UHS-VD-14-1 (82) teresa ramsay

Valerie Durbon Photography

To get there, from Washington, D.C. take I-66 west to Route 50 West (Exit 57B) toward Winchester, Va. Drive approximately 25 miles to Middleburg and continue on Route 50 (John Mosby Hwy.) to Upperville and the show grounds (Route 50 passes right through the show grounds).  If you’re arriving from out of the area, the event is located just 40 minutes west from Washington Dulles International Airport. Take Route 28 from the airport to Route 50 west and follow as above. Follow signs for parking. For information, call 540-687-5740 or 540-592-3858. For complete schedules and up-to-the-minute results, visit the web site at

The Upperville Colt and Horse Show is a 501(c)3 charitable organization and raises funds for the Churches of Upperville Outreach and the Upperville Volunteer Fire Department, among other area charities.  Aside from many local families and friends, this traditional event is sponsored in part by several local area businesses including: Middleburg Bank, The Goodstone Inn & Estates, Upperville Auto Repair, The EMO Agency, Fuog/Interbuild and Tri County Feeds.

Text and photos courtesy of Upperville Colt & Horse Show

Top Photo: Mr. Robert J. Burke has been called a classic horseman, his quiet seat and steady hands have calmed the most nervous of young horse. He took a long hold and the horses seemed to respond with a freedom of movement and jumping as if loose, but in perfect control.

Second photo: General George Patton, Master of the nearby Cobbler Mountain Hunt, was a frequent exhibitor and supporter of Upperville. He often rode in the hunter classes and joined with General”Billy” Mitchell to compete in the team class.


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