Little Manatee River State Park

Little Manatee River State Park
Little Manatee River State Park

Sunday, May 14, 2017


May 8-14, 2017

May 8

 
 
 

 
Travel day to Mayberry RV Park
 

Mount Airy, NC






Site 69
We arrived and set up early enough at Mayberry RV Park to take a ride into the quaint town of Mount Airy. 
 The town’s claim to fame is that it was the home of actor Andy Griffith and the inspiration for the fictional town of Mayberry on his TV show.
Most of the shops were closed so we just took a stroll down one side and up the other.

Walkers Soda Fountain
 
 
We enjoyed a delicious steak dinner at the Sagebrush Steak House.







May 9

When researching the route we would be taking in a few days, I read that part of our route (I-77 near the town of Fancy Gap) was very dangerous.  We decided to take a ride to pre-check the route.  Other than heavy fog the road wasn’t as bad as I thought it was going to be.

After crossing the border we stopped in at the Visitor Center to pick up brochures and a map.

Then just explored some rural roads.

One road took us down to the Wytheville State Fish Hatchery.  Rainbow brook and brown trout are all hatched and reared there. 



May 10
Pilot Mountain State Park. 
 
 
May 11
We went back to downtown Mount Airy to sample the world famous pork chop sandwich at Snappy Lunch.  Our timing was not great as we arrived there were several people from a tour waiting for seats.  There are only three stools, 10 booths and 12 tables at Snappy Lunch.  We only had to wait 20 minutes for a booth. 

The famous pork chop sandwich consists of three and a half ounces of park tenderloin bathed in a sweet-milk batter and fired for 10 minutes, coleslaw, mustard, chili, onion and tomato.  Monte doesn’t like coleslaw, mustard, chili or raw onion so his was pretty naked.  I can’t tolerate onion so that was the only thing I changed on my order.  It was pretty tasty.

Our next stop was the Andy Griffith Museum.  The museum houses the world’s largest collection of Andy Griffith memorabilia.  Oddly enough included at the museum is a room dedicated to Chang and Eng Bunker famously known as the Siamese twins.  The twins settled in the Mount Airy area in 1839 where they married sisters and shared a bed built for four.  Chang had twelve children and Eng had eleven children. 
Back on Main Street we went to Walkers Soda Fountain. We opted to sit on stools at the counter that brought back childhood memories.   Monte ordered a Heath chocolate malt and I went with a vanilla egg cream.

While we were downtown we also toured the Earle Theatre.  The theatre is the home of the Old-Time Music Heritage Hall that exists to preserve, promote, and protect Surry County old-time music.
While we were there we learned that there is a live radio broadcast from the theatre every Saturday on WPAQ.  The radio station is located a couple of miles away from the theatre so we decided to stop in. 
   Jennie Lowry, the DJ, graciously allowed us to hang out a while during her broadcast. 
In the evening we returned to town and spent a very enjoyable evening listing to an Old Time musicians jam session at the Earle Theatre.
As the musicians were packing up, Monte went down to chat with them.


May 12
On Friday, it rained the entire trip as we traveled the 150 miles from Mount Airy, NC to Buena Vista, VA.  Our destination was Glen Maury RV Park.  The park is owned and operated by the City of Buena Vista and includes an 18-hole golf course, two campgrounds and a concert venue.
At check-in we were instructed to select any empty site.  We chose a site in the middle of the field so we would have a better chance up picking up a satellite connection.
We were chilled to the bone as we set up in the rain.  Once set up we turned on the fireplace and just relaxed the rest of the day.
May 13
On Saturday, the sun came out so we took a ride to Natural Bridge State Park.  The park includes several long-standing attractions including the trail under the bridge and along Cedar Creek, a recreation of Monacan Native American housing and the 30-foot tall Lace Falls. 
George Washington came to the site of Natural Bridge in 1750 as a surveyor.  Thomas Jefferson purchased 157 acres of land including the Natural Bridge from King George III in 1774. 
The bridge is 215 feet high with a span of 90 feet.
Natural Bridge State Park Visitor Center
After dinner we took a short walk up the hill to the stage to listen to a live band.
 

May 14
Downtown Lexington, VA

Washington and Lee University 
 
 
VMI (Virginia Military Institute
Dinner at Applebees
Monte tested our generator that we might need next week while we stay at Big Meadows Campground in Shenandoah National Park.


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