This had been one our favorite dock diving events in the past. We loved attending this event in both 2015 and 2016 . We camped at Sunset Beach Resort (another favorite!)
Although were extremely excited to be back a third year in a row in July 2017, the weather this year was just unbearably hot. We tried jumping the dogs, but by the time Limoncello’s came up, the temperatures were a real-feel of over 103 degrees… too hot and dangerous to compete in our opinion.
22’8″ 23’5″ 2nd Place Elite Division
Even though the one jump that Lager and Hooch executed put them into the Finals, we scratched our jumps for the rest of the weekend, and forfeited our spot in the Finals. We chose to make the best of the remainder of the weekend, and enjoy the campground with the dogs.
Back to the campground to enjoy some Chesapeake Bay fun!
It sure wasn’t the weekend we thought it would be, and people thought we were crazy to give our spot in Finals…but our dogs’ safety and health come first. We made the best of the hot temps, and enjoyed cooling everyone off in the Chesapeake Bay. A bad storm eventually rolled in, but the outcome was a beautiful double rainbow, and a gorgeous sunset!
Fort Monroe served as a key defensive site of the Chesapeake Bay from Native American’s use before the settling of Jamestown, to its most recent mission as the US Army’s Headquarters for Training and Doctrine Command until 2011.
Rita is finding Glamping to be fun, and is exploring all over the camper! Here she is in the shower:
View from our camp site:
Around the campground and fort:
Fort Monroe Quarters Number 1
Old Point Comfort Light
Inside on of the buildings
The campground was very peaceful, and the pups were able to rest well in the camper after each day of the event!
Cello and Hooch competed in a Wild Card event, called “Bark in the Park,” held at Bay Creek, in Cape Charles, VA. What a gorgeous and dog friendly community!!
We bought a new canopy – LOVE it!
Cello had an awesome weekend. What started out as an event to continue practicing, ended up with Cello taking first place in the Semi-Pro finals, and also setting a new Personal Best in Speed Retrieve!
17′ 11″ 21′ 00″
20′ 08″ 20′ 03″
21′ 06″ 21″ 06″
21′ 05″ 22′ 05″FIRST PLACE SEMI-PRO FINALS!
8.325 7.650 NEW PERSONAL BEST!
We entered Hooch in this competition specifically to see if we could get him an additional invitation to the World Championships in Extreme Vertical. Not only did he win First Place in Cadet EV and achieve an added invitation in Extreme Vertical, he jumped a new Personal Best (and on camera!!) of 24′ 2″ and made the PRO Finals (first time ever!)!!
24′ 2″ 22′ 5″
23′ 3″ 23′ 4″
23′ 0″ 22′ 11″
22′ 10″ 22’2″
23′ 6″ 23′ 9″ Fourth Place in Pro Finals – not bad considering it’s his first time!
Starting Height: 5′ 4″
Ending Height: 5′ 10″ First Place Cadet (and an invitation to compete in the World Championships in Extreme Vertical!)
This hotel is located close to Newport News/Williamsburg International Airport, Ferguson, Patrick Henry Mall, Peninsula Town Center, Prime Outlets, Colonial Williamsburg, Busch Gardens, and Water Country USA. They offer a free grocery shopping service so that you can cook in the full kitchen, which is stocked with cookware, dishes, and appliances. The hotel also has an outdoor BBQ and fire pit, fitness center, indoor pool, coin laundry facility, free Wi-Fi, and free breakfast buffet. In addition, enjoy free Wi-Fi, and a convenience mini-mart inside the hotel.
Even better, this hotel is pet friendly, and has a pet “park” located behind the hotel.
Capital City Brewing company first opened in 1992 in our nation’s capitol as Washington DC’s first brew pup since prohibition. We visited the Arlington location, located at the Village of Shirlington, on Campbell Avenue in Arlington, VA.
We enjoyed some of Capital City’s signature beer and some delicious food from their menu, as we toasted to Millie and Cello!
Cello, Addison, and Millie hanging out at Capital Brewing Company:
On Easter morning, Cello woke up to her basket and huge bunny left for her from the Easter Bunny!
Cello’s Easter Basket:
Cello’s Easter gifts waiting for her on Easter morning in our camper:
Cello was happy to see that the Easter Bunny did not pass her by in her camper
Cello even had her own egg hunt! Each egg was filled with treats!
Lamb Chop was even hiding an egg!
Found another one in the toy basket!
Brian helped Cello get the treat in each egg as she found them:
After the Easter festivities in our camper, we took a ride onto Skyline Drive. Even though we had been on Skyline Drive before, we had never been this far south on it, and we can’t ever get tired of seeing these views!
Cello had her first ride on the Blue Ridge Parkway! She had been on Skyline Drive before, but she had never been on the Blue Ridge Parkway! The Blue Ridge Parkway spans 469 miles and connects the Great Smoky Mountains National Park to the Shenandoah National Park and Skyline Drive. Construction began in 1935 in Cumberland Knob, near the North Carolina/Virginia state line. The parkway was completed in 1983.
The Natural Bridge is located in Natural Bridge (Rockbridge County), Virginia. It is one of the oldest tourist attractions in the United States, and is included in several “Natural Wonders of the World” lists, designated a National Historic Landmark, a Virginia National Landmark, and is listed in the National Register of Historic Places.
Natural Bridge was amazing to see. We enjoyed sitting down for a while and taking in all it’s beauty.
Brian got lots of kisses from Cello at the Natural Bridge!
Rockbridge Vineyard sits on a hill at 2,000 ft in elevation in Raphine, Va. The wine maker has worked in wineries in Germany, California, and Virginia, before buying the land to have his own vineyard. The tasting room is actually inside the barn!
The wines here have won many medals including Best in Show in the Atlantic Seaboard Wine Competition, Best in Show in Town Point Competition, and has also won the Virginia’s Governor’s Cup twice.
We did the white wine tasting list – and each one was delicious.
Cello is waiting patiently for an oyster cracker – or maybe her own glass of wine? She is the “legal” human-age of 21 now 😉
After the wine tasting, we enjoyed a glass of wine before heading out to our next adventure!
This tasting room had a neat concept for the ceiling too…
Wade’s Mill is a working flour mill built in the 1700’s. The mill was built by Captain Joseph Kennedy, an early settler of the Shenandoah Valley. The Kennedy family owned the mill for about 100 years before it was bought by James Wade, whose family operated the mill for the next 4 generations.
Cello and Brian outside of Wade’s Mill:
Wade’s Mill is now officially registered as a historic place:
Wade’s Mill is one of the few remaining flour mills that actually still produces flour exclusively on mill stones. While we were there, the current owner was milling!
The bottom of the mill has a store where you can buy all the goods milled at Wade’s Mill. We bought some polenta, grits, and pesto bread…YUM!
This mill provides flour, grits, polenta, etc for the local restaurants.
How could Cello resist stopping at a brewing company named after her Daddy 😉 With Brian being a “ginger”… we couldn’t resist stopping at Redbeard Brewing Company , located in the historic Wharf district of Staunton, Va. It is Staunton’s first downtown brewery, and they specialize in “small batches of big beers.”
Ox-Eye Vineyards is located in the historic Wharf District of Staunton, Va. The Vineyard was named after the Ox-Eye flower that grows in abundance on the owners’ farm.
The tasting room is in a building that was originally built in 1904 and used as an office for a local coal and lumber business. The building also served as a scale house for horse drawn coal wagons. The loaded wagons would pull up under the building’s archway to be weighed by the Fairbanks scale.
Barren Ridge Vineyards is located in Fishersville, Va on a former apple orchard. The winery makes 14 different wines, many of them award-winning. The tasting room is a converted 1890’s apple barn. The owners preserved the original structure of the barn, and it’s wooden beams. The ceiling in the tasting room is constructed of the original barn’s wood…it was really neat!
We enjoyed doing their wine tasting, and being able to have Cello in the tasting room with us:
The tasting room was really nice:
Our friends Brandi and Stan, and their dog, Guinness, also enjoyed the wine tasting:
After the tasting, we enjoyed a glass of wine overlooking the vineyard:
During our Easter camping trip, we were lucky enough to have visited Virginia’s Natural Chimneys. Natural Chimney Park is located in Mt. Solon, in Augusta County, Virginia, along the North River. There is a campground located at the park with a pool, playground, and hiking trails. Natural Chimneys Park is also home to one of the largest jousting tournaments in the Eastern United States. The tournament has been held annually the third Saturday in August, since 1821!
It’s pretty amazing that the Shenandoah Valley was once the floor of an inland sea! The “chimneys” formed from limestone that began to accumulate under the sea during the Paleozoic Era (some 500 million years ago!!) … the seven “chimneys” that stand at Natural Chimneys Park in Mt. Solon, Virginia tower an amazing 120 ft, and have caves within them. While visiting the chimneys, Cello had her first spelunking expedition!
Jenny and Cello at Natural Chimneys:
Let’s go spelunking!
Brian and Cello entering the cave!
Friends Brandi, and her daughter, Payton, entering the cave:
Thank goodness for iPhones, and camera flashes…it was DARK in there!!
Jenny and Cello taking a rest after our first-ever cave exploration:
It was amazing to learn the history of this incredible natural formation. The chimneys and the cave we were in is something I will definitely never forget!
Looking at the AAA magazine one evening, an article caught my eye about a small town in Virginia ranked one of the best small towns in the United States… Staunton, Va. We decided that this would be a great place to camp for our annual Easter camping trip.
Staunton is a unique and quaint town made up of 5 historic districts. There is great architecture and unique shops and eateries to enjoy.
Looking at the AAA magazine one evening, an article caught my eye about a small town in Virginia ranked one of the top 20 small towns in the United States…Staunton, VA. After doing some research, and having never stayed at a KOA before, we decided to give Staunton/Walnut Hills KOA a try for our annual Easter camping trip. Not only was Staunton/Walnut Hills KOA in close proximity to the town of Staunton, it is also located between the Blue Ridge and Appalachian Mountain ranges on the site of a former walnut plantation…pretty awesome!
Our campsite was right on the lake, and was spacious and clean.
Around the campground…
We are the third camper in from the left.
The campground had a fenced-in dog run, so of course we broke out the “Chuck-It,” and let Cello run like the wind!
The sunsets we saw from our campsite were amazing!
We got to see and do some really incredible in and around Staunton, which you will see in upcoming posts!
On our way home from Myrtle Beach, we decided to try another stop-over location. We stayed the night at South Forty Camp Resort. It was a quick visit, just to get some sleep before continuing on our travels home. I forgot to take a picture of our campsite at this campground – but here were our views from the campsite…