Liberation Road Trip: Orkney Springs

The goal was to finish the house renovations by the end of Labor Day weekend.  I came up short but will stick to the follow-up goal of taking a little road trip to celebrate being (almost) free from the shackles of construction.  Trim work and painting can wait a few more days.

I volunteered to drive Mom to Harrisonburg to return her cable gear to Comcast.  [Shout-out to her for cutting the cable cord!].  It was too nice a day to drive that far and not make a day of it.  There are so many cute towns up/down the Valley, but I opted for one of my favorite little spots in western Virginia: Orkney Springs – Shrinemont.

I’ve posted about this village before, but it’s worthy of a repeat.  Orkney Springs is an unicorporated town reminiscent of Walton’s Mountain:  a few houses, a general store and a post office.  Shrinemont is an Episcopal retreat that is so charming, even the most stoic couldn’t help but be moved just a little.  They are separate but intertwined so that you can’t tell where one ends and the other begins.

My hope was to take lots of pictures of the beautiful buildings.  Unfortunately, we were not the only ones to think this weekend was perfect for getting away.  The retreat was PACKED.  And since we were visitors to an otherwise private event, I didn’t want to include photos of people – especially the children.  I was able to visit the shrine and enjoy the flowers, And that was good enough for me.

If you live in this part of the world, it’s truly worth a visit. There are workshops and church retreats through most of the year, and home to the summer Shenandoah Valley Music Festival.  For me, the bucolic charm is all the enticement I need to take the 1+hour drive.

We capped off the day with a glass of wine and crab cake sandwich at Cross Key Vineyards in Mt. Crawford. Not only is the wine pretty good, they have a bistro on premises. Definitely worth the trip if you’re looking for a good lunch with a fabulous view.

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