Lucketts, VA

“I must have flowers always.”  This quote describes the sunshine Lucketts brings to my life.

This quaint and seemingly untouched town was originally called Black Swamp.  They say it is because of the Black Oak trees growing in the area. The town later became known as Goresville from the late 18th century until the mid-19th century.  The town derived its name after a Thomas Gore a prominent local man.  In 1865 the town changed its name again to  Lucketts in 1865. The town’s Lucketts School is listed on the National Register of Historic Places.

When I am looking for a unique gift for a creative person I go meander through the antique stores.  A must stop are my favorites:
Bee Keepers Cottage
* The Old Lucketts Store
* Rust and Feathers

There is the design house that has various dates to which it is open.  I have not been able to be there on those days but here it is stellar.

This last trip we scored an Elvis Presley record, metal basket, 2 old photos mounted on a board with a news blurb and a must have tote Lucketts tote bag.

The shops are open mostly 10-5 everyday of the week.  Most of the shops are located around the only stop light in Lucketts.

Temple Hill Park

Come out to the farm to pick out a beautiful bouquet of Sunflowers, Zinnias and Cosmos. A bouquet is only $5.00 with each sunflower stem and additional $0.50.

Temple Hall was constructed in 1810 for William Temple Thomson Mason (24 July 1782–1862), a son of Thomson Mason and his second wife Elizabeth Westwood Wallace of nearby Raspberry Plain, and nephew of George Mason.

This can be an all day family activity.  Children will spend the day on the playground and enjoying all the animals on the farm.  The best time to visit is during the fall Festival including a giant 24 acre maze, paintball shooting gallery, pumpkin blasters, jumping pillow & much more!

The children can spend the day on the playground and walking around the farm visiting the animals. The best time to visit is during the fall festival including a giant 24 acre maze, paintball shooting gallery, pumpkin blasters, jumping pillow.

There is amble spots to picnic however dogs are not allowed on the property.  The farm is free to visit.

March 31 – November 6
Mondays (Open November 5): CLOSED
Tuesday-Sunday: 9:00-4:30 PM

Please call 703-779-9372 to reach the park staff.

Barnhouse Brewery

This local favorite brewhouse was started by Roger and Christine Knoell .  They have  giant Bavarian Pretzels with house-made beer cheese and several homemade beer mustard’s.  My favorite is the spicy mustard flavor paired with the Kolsch.

Lighter Side
Belgian & Seasonals

They are open Friday – Sunday are kid and dog friendly.

Vanish Brewery

Vanish Brewery is located near Lucketts and Leesburg with 20 taps started by Jonathan Staples in 2014.  The vast property 53 acres with black hops has room for kids to play and dogs to enjoy the sun.

The outdoor tables are the perfect spot to enjoy the live music. A perfect spot to spend the entire day with friends play Frisbee golf and lounging around the property.

42245 Black Hops Lane
Leesburg, VA 20176
Phone: 703-779-7407

Hours: Mon-Wed 12-9pm
Thurs, Fri 12-10pm
Sat 11am-10pm
Sun 11am-9pm

Scottish Rite Freemasonry Alexandria, VA

Scottish Rite is one of the two branches of Freemasonry in which a Master Mason (Third Degree) may proceed after he has completed the three degrees of Symbolic or Blue Lodge Masonry. (The other branch is known as York Rite consisting of Capitular and Cryptic Masons and Knights Templar.)

Scottish Rite includes the Degrees from the Fourth to the Thirty-third, inclusive. The moral teachings and philosophy of Scottish Rite are an elaboration of the basic Masonic principles found in Blue Lodge or Symbolic Freemasonry. Sometimes likened to a “College of Freemasonry,” Scottish Rite uses extensive drama and allegory to emphasize the content and message of its degrees.

the most visible and least understood appendant body of Freemasonry, the Scottish Rite isn’t particularly ancient, and it didn’t come from Scotland. It is technically a concordant body, because some of its degrees continue the story of the building of Solomon’s Temple started in the first three lodge degrees. The Scottish Rite appears in a major role in Dan Brown’s novel, The Lost Symbol.

Freemasons For Dummies Cheat Sheet

Some of my favorite pictures from our visit.

Address: 1430 W Braddock Rd, Alexandria, VA 22302
Monday 8AM–4PM
Tuesday 8AM–4PM
Wednesday 8AM–4PM
Thursday 8AM–4PM
Friday Closed
Saturday Closed
Sunday Closed

The National Museum of the Marine Corps

A lasting tribute to all U.S. Marines–past, present, and future.  This well designed museum is hosted on 135-acre site adjacent to the Quantico base.

The Museum’s  exterior soaring design resembles the image of the flag-raisers of Iwo Jima.  The interactive exhibits are state of the art and innovative.

Never seen before and one of a kind artifacts allow visitors to immerse themselves in history.

Address: 18900 Jefferson Davis Hwy, Triangle, VA 22172
9:00 AM (0900) to 5:00 PM (1700) every day except Christmas Day. 
Admission is free.
Opened: November 10, 2006


Mount Vernon

Mount Vernon was originally called Little Hunting Creek Plantation and owned by John Washington. Augustine passed the estate to his eldest son Lawrence, George’s elder half-brother, in 1740 who renamed it Mount Vernon after the famed English naval officer Admiral Edward Vernon.

George and Martha never had children together. He helped raise 2 of her children.  Martha gave birth to 4 children:
Daniel (Nov. 19, 1751–Feb. 19, 1754) died most likely of malaria
Frances (Apr. 12, 1753–Apr. 1, 1757)
John (Jacky) Parke Custis (Nov. 27, 1754–Nov. 5, 1781)
Martha (“Patsy”) Parke Custis (1756–June 19, 1773)

The children’s great-grandfather had imposed a strict condition on inheritance: only children bearing the name “Parke” as part of their given name would receive a portion of the family estate.

A law was passed to make George Washington the highest ranking U.S. officer General of the Armies of the United States. No one will outrank him.

He owned a whiskey distillery.  In 1799, his distillery produced nearly 11,000 gallons, making it one of the largest whiskey distilleries in America at the time.

In 1768 before the start of the American Revolution, Washington and his wife had guests for dinner on eighty-two of the 291 days.

George Washington did not have a middle name. The use of middle names was not a common practice in Europe or its colonies until the early 19th century. Of the first 20 United States presidents, only 5 had middle names.

George had almost every breed of dog known to American Kennel Club. He owned French hounds Tipsy, Mopsey, Truelove, and Ragman – just to name a few.




Admission for Adults is $13; senior citizens 62 and older pay $12; youth ages 6–11 are $6; kids 5 and younger are free. Mount Vernon is open every day of the year.

Address: 3200 Mount Vernon Hwy, Mt Vernon, VA 22121
Area: 500 acres

Occoquan Park, VA

This is the spot for beautiful walking trails, water, and outdoors. The scenery is decorated with unique items that will complete your experience.

Stellar spot for strolling, running, fishing, kayaking, boating and watching the wildlife. The geese are friendly and enchanting to watch.

The Brickmasters cafe has relaxing views of the park watching the boats coast up and down the river.

Occoquan park reopens this week, unveils new events venue and cafe


The Occoquan watershed (drainage area) covers 590 square miles and includes the 1,700-acre Occoquan Reservoir, which serves as the boundary between Fairfax and Prince William counties. Nearly 40% of Prince William County lands drain directly into the Occoquan Reservoir before flowing to the Potomac River and on to the Chesapeake Bay.

The Occoquan Reservoir:
Supplies about 40% of the drinking water supply for 1.7 million Northern Virginia residents.
Can supply drinking water for the entire region in an emergency.

Visit the city for your small town fix.  There are loads of shops and eateries and stroll along the streets to view the historic buildings.

Ball’s Bluff

The Battle of Ball’s Bluff in Loudoun County, Virginia on October 21, 1861, was one of the early battles of the American Civil War, where Union Army forces under Major General George B. McClellan, suffered a humiliating defeat.

The operation was planned as a minor reconnaissance across the Potomac to establish whether the Confederates were occupying the strategically important position of Leesburg. A false report of an unguarded Confederate camp encouraged Brigadier General Charles Pomeroy Stone to order a raid, which clashed with enemy forces. A prominent U.S. Senator in uniform, Colonel Edward Baker, tried to reinforce the Union troops, but failed to ensure that there were enough boats for the river crossings, which were then delayed. Baker was killed, and a newly-arrived Confederate unit routed the rest of Stone’s expedition.

The Union losses, although modest by later standards, alarmed Congress, which set-up the Joint Committee on the Conduct of the War, a body which would provoke years of bitter political infighting.

Take advantage of the trails.  I took one of the trails north of the parking lot.  Bug spray is highly recommended.

Hours are dusk to dawn.

Ball’s Bluff Battlefield Regional Park
Ball’s Bluff Road
LeesburgVA 21076

T 703-737-7800

White’s Ferry

White’s Ferry is a cable ferry service for cars, bicycles, and pedestrians across the Potomac River near Leesburg. White’s Ferry is located at 39°9′17.26″N 77°31′13.50″W.  The ferry is named after the confederate Civil War General Jubal A. Early.  At the peak of the ferries there were 100 now this is the only cable ferry in service.

This is a small ferry holding a max of 24 cars. The ride is quick around 5 minutes to cross and a couple of minutes to load and unload.

The cost for a one way car is $5 or $8 for a round trip.