I think we all sometimes forget how special our Halifax County truly is. We get lost in the day-to-day hustle and bustle and forget to take a moment to celebrate the beautiful people, places, and attractions that make this area of Southern Virginia special. Here are five little reminders of what makes us so unique and worthy of celebration (in no particular order).
1. This week, Staunton River State Park plays hosts to a STAR PARTY! (Not an acronym, I'm just excited). No, Hollywood's A-listers are not descending upon Halifax County for the week. Instead, astronomers from across the country and WORLD are headed to Scottsburg for the week to look through powerful telescopes to observe celestial objects and other astronomical objects, learn from other astronomers, and attend lectures. What makes this so extra ordinary? Our very own Staunton River State Park is the site of some of the best observing in the mid-Atlantic, earning its designation as an INTERNATIONAL DARK SKY ASSOCIATION PARK. For an area to become a Dark Sky, it must provide a view of the night sky without the obstruction of light pollution. Strict regulations are in place to make sure our park keeps its status as an international dark sky. The week-long event is for astronomers ONLY, however, on Saturday, October 29, from 8-11 p.m., the park will host a FREE PUBLIC STAR PARTY. Park staff and astronomers will be on hand to answer questions about stars, planets, galaxies, constellations, and other astronomical objects in a family-friendly environment.
2. The culinary scene in Halifax County is something for all of us to be proud of. The inaugural Halifax County Restaurant Week was a huge success (more on that later) thank you to our fantastic restaurants for supporting the community event and showcasing the best of Southern Virginia. Restaurant Week diners aren't the only folks taking note of the culinary gems in this part of the Commonwealth. The Food Network recently featured Molasses Grill in its legacy of Virginia eats "Commonwealth Cravings--The Most Iconic Dishes in Virginia."
3. Who doesn't enjoy a compliment? We all do and truly appreciate the kind words when they come from visitors to our fair community. On a recent trip to Halifax County, Andrea from Richmond and her brother rode bikes along the Tobacco Heritage Trail, and following their experience, sent this note to Town of South Boston Manager, Tom Raab (reprinted with permission).
My brother and I rode our bikes along the Tobacco Heritage Trail in South Boston last week.We wanted to let you know that we were really pleasantly surprised how great this trail is. What a wonderful opportunity to be outdoors and enjoy such great scenery along the Dan River. The town should promote it much, much more and invite folks that like hiking and riding their bikes. Sincerely, Andrea S. (Richmond, VA)
4. A small committee has been formed to create awareness, to educate, and to enrich the broader community by sharing Halifax County's African-American heritage. Led by the Department of Tourism, several members of the community have been asked to work together to preserve and protect the history and culture of the African-American community in Halifax County. Barbara Bass, Emma Edmunds, Tonja Roberts, Leland Luck, and Patricia Jennings, along with Linda Shepperd and LaTonya Hamilton have devised a framework to create the Halifax County African-American Heritage Trail. The trail, for residents, and visitors alike will provide a broader understanding of the lives of African-American pioneers, entrepreneurs, civic leaders, and business owners who struggled, triumphed, and established themselves in the fabric of our community. The trail will focus on commercial, educational, recreations, and religious sites and provide a portrait of land ownership, political and civil rights activities, and burial sites. More than just a map of locations, the trail will be content-rich and provide access to primary documents and photographs that will provide a broad range of information to users. The Department of Tourism received a grant from Virginia Tourism to assist in the marketing and promotion of the trail. We'll be sharing more information about this project soon.
5. The list could go on forever about the many varied and exciting things that we have in our county. (and it will...in future posts). Fifth on the list of celebrations is the fact that we have so many talented craftsmen and artisans in our community. The Visitor Center is one-stop shopping for GENUINE HALIFAX-made products from wines to soaps, to cutting boards, jewelry, hand-painted glasses, pottery, and much more! We are proud to sell these items and help support our local community.