Tuesday, May 20, 2014

Eats and Arts in Bedford, Virginia

Bedford is a charming little town in Southwestern Virginia, just half way between the larger cities of Lynchburg and Roanoke.  This little town is very special, another gem, I've recently discovered in my travels.  The community is best known for their tragic losses during the Normandy Campaign.  Home now to the National D-Day Memorial, Bedford remembers the loss of  22 brave soldiers out of a population of a mere 3,200 in 1944(the highest losses in the nation in one community), when American troops stormed the Normandy coast of France on June 6th, to wipe out the Nazi Army in WWII!  More than 9,000 Allied soldiers gave their life or were wounded on this day, but more than 100,000 soldiers survived and began their march across Europe to defeat Hitler!!!  
So when you make your trip, take a moment to give your thanks to these brave men at the memorial and spend a lovely afternoon exploring this beautiful little town.   

My new favorite art space, Goose Creek Studio!  This gallery is one of the finest I've visited, and I fell in love with a new local artist and couldn't leave without making one of what will be many purchases to treasure and love, for years to come!  This gallery features several local artists, including Botanical artist Virginia Klute, Mixed Media Artist Carol Burnette, and Landscape Genius Patricia Strobel!!!  

Patricia's warm and inviting oil landscapes of the Virginia countryside pulled me right into the scene.  Mesmerized by the color combinations in the sky's to the exquisite feast of colors in the pastures and mountains, I felt a sense of calm and peace, like no other.  A lovely addition to my home!    

Just steps from the Art Gallery are many other wonderful shops and restaurants!    

Everafter was filled with fresh flowers, cakes, gifts and antiques!  Vintage garden furniture and other curiosities were combined with lovely folks ready to create a beautiful floral arrangement or delicious cake for your special occasion!

Bell Treasures, located on one full side of the Bedford Mini Mall was packed with wonderful antiques, and it's much bigger on the inside than it looks on the outside!  Best finds included: vintage, beautiful children's clothing and accessories, china, glassware, vintage umbrellas, jewelry, and lovely furniture pieces:)

North Bridge Books and Antiques (across from the mini mall) is a treasure hunters paradise, curiosities from all walks of life adorn these shop walls, take your time, you'll see everything from the primitive to the exquisite! 

Retro on the Depot is a charming little shop with a great selection of antique books, hats, gloves, records, glassware and a unique collection of South American and Mexican clothing and accents.

Liberty Antique Mall is just a short drive around the corner to another world of beautiful antique furniture, glassware, china and other odds and ends.  My favorite finds here: vintage dress forms, Victrola's and record players, hand painted Victorian floor screens, and darling vintage patio furniture!!! 

Bedford Antique Mall is another large space just further off the hwy, this was a great place too, lots of furniture, old books, rhinestone jewelry, beaded handbags, linens and other curiosities!

The Charles and Louise Wharton House, built in 1883, still stands on the Main road leading into Bedford and is home to the quaint Wharton gardens that grace the side and back yard of the property, my husband and I took a little stroll over here after our lunch, next door.

The lunch spot like no other is located inside this charming little cottage.  Town Kitchen and Provisions is Bedford's best place for a nibble!!! Melanie and Jared Srsic of The Millstone Tearoom bring you this beautiful gathering place for all things food, and Yummmmm!!!!  
Being a huge fan of The Millstone as well, I was awaiting the opening of this lovely luncheon and it totally lived up to my expectations and more:)    

Order your delights at the counter and gather around a french bistro table among wine bottles on the back porch, art along the entryway or find a seat at a small garden table on the front porch or out in the front gardens and get ready to sink your teeth into something amazing!!!

After you've enjoyed your amazing burger, sandwich or salad, step into their lovely little kitchen shop and take home a cast iron skillet or beautiful french linens and wine!

The first of the many times I've now been here, my husband and I enjoyed an afternoon lunch date in the garden!  Feasting on an amazingly tasty brisket burger, I was immediately in Heaven:)

On my second trip, I enjoyed a seasonal salad of grilled chicken, avocado, cucumber, carrots and apples!  Deeeeeelish!!!!  From the friendly, warm and inviting staff to the delectable eats and drinks, this place is seriously a new favorite I will enjoy time and time again:)  P.S. On my third visit I tried the Friar Cluck....OMG, talk about GOOD!!!!! ;)

Historic Avenel Plantation is just around the corner, and it being a historic Plantation, you know I had to visit;)  Built circa 1838 by William and Frances Burwell, Avenel Plantation has been a hub of social, political and cultural life around Southern Virginia for over 150 years!!!  Purchased by J.W. Ballard in 1906, the home then remained in the Ballard family until 1985, when the Avenel Foundation purchased it and has worked dilegently in the restoration and preservation of the property so that many more may visit it for many years to come!  

Beford is also an amazingly beautiful neighborhood to simply take a stroll through, you'll see everything from Cape Cod style cottages to elegant Victorian and Colonial style homes and gardens.  

If you'd like to stay the night in Bedford there is a charming Bed and Breakfast I came across, Almost Home.  
Being in Bedford you can easily stay for a weekend or longer and experience all that Bedford, Lynchburg, Roanoke and the surrounding Blue Ridge Mountains and wine trails have to offer, there will be no shortage of things to do, food to eat, wine to drink and treasures to be picked fresh and taken home!

Come see for yourself!

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