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Saturday, February 17, 2018

Road Trippin’ to Lynchburg, VA!

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It’s been a number of years since I’ve been to Lynchburg, but this little city holds so much charm, right in the heart of Virginia.

A college town, with Liberty University at the forefront at its center (and thereby explaining all of the crazy traffic at all hours!) it is also a town with a lot of interesting history behind it.

And some really NICE independent businesses in the downtown area as well –of course mixed right in with the “strip mall of usuals” that you’ll find along the main drag.

I can get to Target or Dick’s Sporting Goods anywhere.  I didn’t need to go there.

I headed downtown.


A few years back on a driving trip up to New York (Boy, that was a long haul!) I only made it as far as Lynchburg on my way home.  Remembering how wonderful the Craddock Terry Hotel was, I made a plan to stay the night, going the rest of the way home in the morning.

I think I blogged about how fun this place is, being built in a reclaimed shoe factory.  Yep, HERE it is. Sheesh, was that really 2012?  Time flies.

At any rate, it was a nice enough day for me to park down by the fountain, and then walk the hilly streets to check out a couple of antique shops while getting some steps in.

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Here, exactly 250 years ago, in the spring of 1757, John Lynch established Lynch’s Ferry. One of the city’s newest attractions now stands, or spouts, in the river at the exact spot where the founder’s ferry crossed the James River centuries ago. The three-year old jet d’eau, donated by a public-spirited citizen as a focus for riverfront renewal, was dedicated on August 20, 2004, and immediately became a major Lynchburg landmark, or watermark.

Attached to a 19th -century stone pier that once supported a bridge across the James, and throwing a column of James River water 190' high, it is the highest such fountain east of the Mississippi. Critics have likened the water spout to a broken fire hydrant, which has a ring of truth when it is seen directly from the riverside. From a distance, however, and from other vantages points throughout downtown, the spray that rises above some of downtown’s tallest buildings adds a gossamer effect to the cityscape. [source]

The day was fairly gray, with intermittent rain and drizzle.  The fountain is much prettier when cast against a blue Virginia sky, but still.  A fun landmark.


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I poked around in here a bit!

Buzzard’s Roost is a very small, quaint shop with some nice things.  they even had a Singer 99 (Not in great shape and I don’t need one) and a couple of quilts, but no room to lay them out to really look at them.  It was cramped in there to say the least, and the lighting was ---well….what lighting?  It was dark. 

No spending happened here!

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Hiking uphill and admiring the buildings.

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Bank building dating to 1865!

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What stories these storefronts could tell!

I’ve felt this way about so many small cities.  When buildings sit half empty, windows boarded up – beautiful buildings, I just feel sad!  This could be such a vibrant downtown area, but the cost of reconstruction and upkeep in a place where traffic just isn’t what it used to be – with everyone flooding to stripmallville and big brand name stores by the University, I don’t know how a business could thrive down here.  Still there are some great boutiques, and some wonderful looking restaurants and it is my hope that the uniqueness of Lynchburg will continue to draw folks to this area.

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This antique mall happened.

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Lots of wandering and petting, but no purchasing.

Maybe I’ve reached saturation level?

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Beautiful Monument Terrace at my red light.

Dedicated in 1926 to commemorate the city’s military history, it has been stolidly performing that duty for the past 89 years. At its crest is the statue of a Confederate soldier; at the foot, a bronze World War I “doughboy.” In between, scattered among 10 landings (used not only for contemplation but also much-needed rest for out-of-shape step climbers) are plaques honoring Central Virginians lost in every war from the Civil War to Vietnam.

Given its location in the very navel of Lynchburg’s downtown at Ninth and Church streets and rising 132 broad steps up to Court Street, this is one monument that is almost impossible to ignore. It is a statuary version of the elephant in the living room, the rare monument that can also be used for aerobic exercise.

Moreover, Lynchburg has always lacked an iconic building — no true skyscrapers, no breath-taking museum or sports arena, no castle — and so Monument Terrace long ago moved front and center as the city symbol. [source]

Were I not on my way to check in to my hotel and meet some folks for dinner, and were it not raining, I would have loved to have stopped and walked the steps.  There are wonderful gems like this found everywhere.


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Hotel Sewing and CSI!

This trip is a week long, with plenty of time to get some pieces put through the machine.  I’m hoping to have blocks done by the time I get home so I can start assembly.  Last night it was MORE stitch &B flip corners and a plethora of bonus triangles that may be worked into THIS project as an additional border, or may find themselves into something completely different.  I love options!

The light you see has become my favorite travel lamp.  it’s the Clip On Smart Lamp by the Daylight Company.  It weighs NOTHING.  Seriously.  So light weight, and completely bendable for positioning that light right where you need it.

It’s got 3 brightness settings, and the battery charges by USB….It will stand on the desktop without having to be clipped to anything, but I kept knocking it over with my hands as I sewed so I attached it to the corner of the machine bed.  It’s got soft grippies, it’s not going to harm anything.  I love this thing!

I’m headed over to Bedford for today’s Scrap Crystals workshop with 50 quilters who have come as far as Arkansas and Kansas for our fun weekend ahead.

The Peaks and Pieces Quilt Guild is an amazing host, being a small guild of only about 24 members.  They have pulled this out in HUGE fashion!

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Quiltville Quote of the Day!

Vintage snowball quilt shared by Kevin H.

Change is inevitable. Either we go with it and grow with it, or we get left behind.

Did you enter yesterday’s Gift-Away for a copy of Frances O’Roark Dowell’s Margaret Goes Modern?

Enjoy your Saturday, everyone!


7 comments:

  1. Thanks for the downtown Lynchburg tour. Happy to see the school bus Featherweight stitching and getting used. No stitching for me today. I will just watch and enjoy your day with the Quilter's stitching away in Virginia.

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  2. Bonnie,
    Lynchburg is also the home of Randolph Macon (formerly Women's)College, an old, lovely, and well-respected institution!

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  3. What a lovely town. Even bigger towns have sad main streets. Luckily, here in Topeka, there's been some investment and our downtown is undergoing a bit of a resurgence. It helps, of course, that the state capitol and buildings aren't going anywhere and provide quite a bit of lunch/daytime traffic. A couple of the business have uncovered the antique storefronts, which I LOVE.

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  4. My home town! I still love the downtown area, and like you, it makes me sad to see it growing empty. Glad you got to stay at the Cradock-Terry hotel - super cute place. Enjoy your time there!

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  5. like to know where you got the light. looks like a great travel light for sew days and retreats. thanks

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  6. We love visiting Virginia. So much history! And that sewing machine is just the most awesome thing!!!

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