In my opinion, it is always a good time for a daytrip or an overnighter. Which is why I took off to Loudoun County, Virginia.
There is plenty to do there but I’m going to keep my comments confined to just a few places. For one thing, I was only there one night and also I have limited space here.
From my home, I arrived at my first stop in 90 minutes. And that was in the rain. So here I am pulling into the driveway of Winery 32, so named because there are 32 acres and 32 peach trees. It has been open for nine years and is owned and operated by Winery 32, LLC. And yes, in case you’re wondering, Virginia, is a very good state for wine production.
Winery 32 produces 17 wines over about 1,000 acres. Currently, they are open Friday through Monday and will be closed in January. Tours now are basically self-guided but you can do a tasting. A walk through the vineyard is okay when the weather cooperates….15066 Limestone School Rd…240-687-1989….winery32.com. (Enjoy a glass on the deck with a fabulous view).
The next stop is the Leesburg Animal Park, 19246 James Monroe Highway. This covers 22 acres, closed Tuesday, and of course is perfect for the family. When there are no concerns about a virus it offers a playroom and play area. The park has domestic and exotic animals. Exotic animals would include camels. zebras and monkeys. Adult admission $15.00, kids and seniors $13.00….703-433-0002…leesburgsanimalpark.com
Okay, I know what you’re thinking. When do we eat. How about right now. And for that we go to 17 North king and stop in for brunch at Shoes Cup & Cork. This was at one time a shoe store, hence the name. So obviously you’ll be dining in a historic building. They are adhering to social protocols so the seating area is reduced, but until the cold weather arrives there is outside dining and a tent area in the rear.
Parking is either on the street or in a close-by garage. Seating is on two floors and if you really need to relax they have a wine list. I’m told one house specialty is the paninis but I had bagels, lox and scrambled eggs for my breakfast. The restaurant is very comfortable and the service was impeccable…703-771-7463…shoescupandcork.com
I can see I wore you out so let’s call it a day. For that let’s go to the Homewood Suites by Hilton, 115 Ft. Evans Road, NE.
There are 91 rooms, remember all suites, free parking, a TV in the lobby, pool (outside), spa, firepit, small business center, and discounts for five-plus nights. Average rate $139.00.
Now here comes what I think is the best part. They offer complimentary breakfast daily and a complimentary dinner Monday-Thursday.
And I’m not talking potato chips and raisins. Both meals are hearty and complete. Be sure to ask about Hilton Honors….571-258-1068….leesburg.homewoodsuites.com
One suggestion, when arriving in town, probably on Route 15, stop by the Visitor Center, 203 Harrison Street, on the lower level of Market Station. Get brochures and ask questions.
As I mentioned at the top, there are plenty of things to do in this county. So before I leave let me list just a few. The Loudoun Museum,16 Loudoun St, NW located in an 18th Century log cabin, Morven Park, 17195 Southern Planter Ln, 1,000 acre home to a former Virginia governor and you take your own guided tour of Historic Leesburg. For that go to the app store – Leesburg Walking Tour.
For more information on the entire area go to visitloudoun.org.
Eddie Applefeld is a Baltimore native and a graduate of Towson University. He has been in the broadcasting profession for over 30 years. Currently he is the Promotions Director of WCBM radio. Before that, he was part of the Rouse & Company show on WQSR, host of a cable TV show called Dining Out and adjunct instructor at Towson.
His past accomplishments include being named a finalist in Baltimore Tourism’s Employee of the Year Program and winner of Toastmaster’s Speaker of the Year contest. He was also twice a heartthrob for the American Heart Association’s gala fund raiser.