While the nation continues to practice social distancing and takes extra precautions to stay healthy, we may feel we are neglecting the places and activities we love the most. Shenandoah Valley in particular is full of adventures and excursions that visitors and residents are itching to get back to. So, here’s a look at what your favorite destinations are offering now and how they’re gearing up for when summer season officially kicks off.
Shenandoah River Outfitters
Nestled by the South Fork of the ‘Doah, Shenandoah River Outfitters (SRO) is a destination for all water sports — from paddles, to tubes, to fishing rods. Although SRO is temporarily closed, this hasn’t stopped staff from celebrating their 50th year of operation and anticipating the arrival of future visitors. Established in 1970, founders Joe Sottosanti, Jackie Sottosanti and Nancy Goebel repurposed a grocery store into a watersport rental facility and campground. Since then SRO has become a popular destination for trips down the river, but perhaps most notably for their Lunch and Steak Dinner package for canoe and kayak trips. Halfway through a paddle on the South Fork, patrons are treated to a hamburger lunch on the side of the river, and after a successful finish to the trip, a steak and chicken barbeque dinner back at the pavilion.
SRO is ready to continue their legacy when public activities can resume, and they’re striving to keep patrons informed as quickly and regularly as possible.
To read more about SRO’s inspiring and adventure-filled history, be sure to follow them on Facebook. For information on trip bookings, head to shenandoah-river.com.
Front Royal Outdoors
Also located on the South Fork, recreational facility Front Royal Outdoors is working hard to make sure that its visitors find a safe way to enjoy the Shenandoah. While they currently cannot offer river trips, they have come up with alternatives for patrons that can’t ignore the call of the water. Any boats or paddleboards will still be available for rental, and Front Royal will either have the equipment available outside of the shop or bring it to a local vacation rental cabin. For those that prefer assistance at the put-in and take-out points, the “Two-Car Rental Option” allows paddlers taking two cars to park at the put-in and take-out points to receive their equipment at the put-in and then return it to awaiting staff members at the take-out.
Of course, regardless of which option visitors choose, Front Royal Outdoors guarantees that any gear that goes out on personal trips are thoroughly sterilized and sanitized after returning to protect the safety of the next paddlers.
For more information on how to book with Front Royal Outdoors for these alternative choices, visit frontroyaloutdoors.com under the River Conditions tab.
Downriver Canoe Company
If you’ve never been camping with Downriver Canoe Company, you should know there’s a reason why their campground is named Golden Rock. Located at a bend in the river, the campsite offers incredible views of the towering mountains, bright blue skies, and thrilling Compton Rapid. Downriver Canoe also welcomes well-behaved, furry passengers on kayaks and canoes, so everyone in the family can enjoy a day on the water. Downriver Canoe even has an option for visitors that need to expend their pent-up energy with a hike and float trip. Visitors can park their cars near the canoe launch to hike three miles up-river to basecamp and then choose between the boat of their choice to paddle their way back to their vehicles—a great option for anyone suffering cabin fever in spring!
Book your trip before availabilities fill up by visiting downriver.com.
Luray Caverns Country Club Resort
Perhaps you prefer spending your day on the green instead of the blue. You’re in luck — Luray Caverns’ country club has the course of every golfer’s dream in the Shenandoah Valley. With almost 65,000 yards of greenery, Caverns Country Club Resort is the perfect destination for anyone looking to keep their distance while still enjoying the serenity of the Blue Ridge mountain air. Packages not only include unlimited play on the course’s 18 holes but also lodging at the Luray Caverns motel and even breakfast and dinner coupons at participating locations. With shelter, meals taken care of, and physical activity, there’s no better place to be with the nation on-hold than the Resort.
For more information on packages, visit luraycaverns.com/attractions/caverns-country-club-resort.
Shenandoah Valley Music Festival
If your interests involve a little more toe-tapping than club-swinging, you may want to pencil in the Shenandoah Valley Music Festival (SVMF) Summer Concert Series into your summer schedule. Located at an outdoor pavilion in Orkney Springs, the SVMF has the sole intention of bringing a variety of good music to the Valley. The Summer Concert Series hosts eight concerts throughout July, August and September, offering a range of genres such as folk, classical, tribute bands and pop. With bands like Nitty Gritty Dirt Band and Hot Strings and Cool Breezes, the Summer Concert Series is the perfect way to celebrate the return of social and musical gatherings.
For more information on this year’s line-up and tickets, go to musicfest.org.