Archive for the ‘Things to Do’ Category

At our pet friendly Virginia bed and breakfast, I am once again reminded this morning just how much we all (me, Suzanne and all the staff) enjoy our dog guests.   It is super to watch the dogs having such a ball running and romping.  Usually our lovable Golden Retriever Callie is right in the middle.   But today is especially wonderful because, along with Callie, there is an adorable black 11-month-old mixed puppy, Ursa; an extremely elegant German Shepard, Bandit; and a cute and lovable white, tan and black dog, Doc, all asking to play!  People and dogs are running in every direction and I must say it has made me laugh out loud. Our guests often tell us just how much their dogs like it here and return over and over with them.  We have watched many dog guests grow from puppy, to full-grown, to mature seniors, enjoying every phase.  We share the painful loss of pets with our guests when that happens, as well.

Callalilly, The beautiful golden retriever at The Inn At Meander Plantation

Our dog Callie

We’ve even had several dogs as  bridesmaid or best man at their human’s elopements.  Sometimes they can be really funny and never fail to produce light heartedness and love.

We are also introduced to new breeds.  Just recently we had a Japanese Shiba Inu, Anime, a breed of Spitz. Our guest explained that these small dogs resemble a fox (we agree!) and self groom like a cat.  And last week we met a beautiful Saluki, Luka, for the first time.

The two most jaw dropping dog guests have been an enormous bull mastiff, Agamemnon,,that weighed in at 225 lbs!  He was gentile and sweet and extremely well mannered…but his size was huge!  The second guests had two giant schnauzers.  I had no idea they were nearly the size of Great Danes.

I do have to say that watching our all time favorite pet-parent guests arrive at the Inn on motorcycle with their Golden Retriever, Gus, in the side car is a totally amusing sight.  He will wear his goggles but really doesn’t like the helmet.

visit from golden retreiver gus at our pet friendly inn

Gus the Golden Retreiver


There are several pet friendly, dog fun locations close to the Inn, like splashing in the Robinson River and walking along the river trails or chasing a ball out in the pastures.    If the weather cooperates we can even offer breakfast on the porch so pooch can come as well.  Away from the Inn we offer a list of great places that will allow and even welcome dogs.  Several wineries such as Early Mountain Vineyards, Old House Vineyards, Keswick Vineyards and Ducard Vineyards even put out dog treats and water bowls.  While most won’t let dogs come in the tasting rooms, some do have beautiful covered picnic terraces or patios where a glasses of wine can be shared along with a picnic from the Inn.

Come stay and check out our new pet friendly package located under “Specials” here on the website.


Suzie and Suzanne



Montpelier, the home of President James and his wife Dolly Madison is only a few miles from Inn at Meander Plantation and Orange area Bed and Breakfast. A fantastic new day long symposium: The Founding Friendship and Enduring Legacy of James Madison and Thomas Jefferson Saturday, October 13, at 9:00 a.m.-5:00 p.m.

The Founding Friendship and Enduring Legacy of James Madison and Thomas Jefferson. Visit James Madison’s home for a day-long symposium on the close personal and professional friendship between the Father of the Constitution and the author of the Declaration of Independence. Notable founding era scholars from across the country will offer remarks on the “long period of … private friendship and political harmony” of James Madison and Thomas Jefferson. A companion exhibit will open on October 13 in the Grills Gallery.

The exhibit will be on display through the end of the year. Montpelier is offering this special symposium to the public at no charge. Register for the symposium and lunch online by October 8. Please call 540.672.2728 x418, or email with questions.

Movies on Mount Pony: Library of Congress Packard Campus for Audio-Visual Conservation is just 15 minutes away for the Inn at Meander Plantation.

Set on a beautiful 45 acre campus with stunning architectural design and landscaping, the Packard Campus of the National Audio-Visual Conservation Center is a state-of-the-art facility where the Library of Congress acquires, preserves and provides access to the world’s largest and most comprehensive collection of films, television programs, radio broadcasts, and sound recordings. The Campus has globally unprecedented capabilities and capacities for the preservation reformatting of all audiovisual media formats (including obsolete formats dating back at least 100 years) and their long-term safekeeping. In addition to preserving the collections of the Library, the Packard Campus was also designed to provide similar preservation services for other archives and libraries in both the public and private sector. The physical description of the Campus is impressive enough—415,000 square feet, more than 90 miles of shelving for collections storage, 35 climate controlled vaults for sound recording, safety film, and videotape, 124 individual vaults for more flammable nitrate film—but it is also a “factory” for acquisitions, preservation, access, and partnerships.

Although the facility is not open to the general public for tours, visitors can enjoy movies on Mount Pony when the Packard Campus hosts a regular series of film and television programming in its 206 seat theater. There are usually three shows a week: Tuesdays at 7:00 pm, Fridays at 7:30 pm, and a Saturday matinee at 2:00 pm. The state-of-the-art projection booth is capable of showing everything from nitrate film to modern digital cinema. Mt. Pony audiences are treated to a dazzling array of cinematic delights in a gorgeous Art Deco-style theater with superlative sound, state-of-the-art film projection, and comfortable seating.

All programs at the Campus are free and open to the public, but children twelve and under must be accompanied by an adult. Reservations are strongly encouraged.

Motion Picture, Broadcasting and Recorded Sound DivisionNational Audio-Visual Conservation CenterLibrary of CongressPackard Campus19053 Mount Pony RoadCulpeper, VA 22701-7551Call (540) 827-1079 x79994 (or) (202) 707-9994 no earlier than one week prior to the screening you plan to attend.
Click for Theater Schedule

Montpelier Civil War Encampment
August 1-3, 2008

So, history buffs – make note of two significant upcoming events at historic Montpelier, President James Madison’s home in Orange County, VA.

About 50 Civil War re-enactors from Company A 13th Virginia, which was known as the “Montpelier Guards,” will be camping Aug. 1-3 at Montpelier and participating in activities similar to those of the estimated 4,500 Confederate forces housed on Montpelier grounds in 1863-64. The event is open to the public on Friday, from 10 a.m. to 5 p.m., Saturday, 9 a.m. to 5 p.m.; and Sunday, 9 a.m. to 2:30 p.m.

The standard $14 admission to Montpelier covers entrance to the encampment and other activities. And by the way, we have discounted admission tickets which also give you a 10% discount at the Montpelier Gift Shop!

As part of the weekend activities, Montpelier senior guide and noted Civil War book author Jayne E. Blair will lead in-depth guide’s tours of the Confederate Winter Camp Site at Montpelier, as well as recognize the Aug. 1 anniversary of the Confederate return to Orange County Courthouse following General Robert E. Lee’s devastating defeat at Gettysburg.

Prior to the 1864 Battle of the Wilderness, Orange County served as headquarters for General Lee’s army. That winter before the 3-day battle that resulted in almost 30,000 casualties, General Samuel McCowan’s South Carolina Brigade occupied the camp located on what is now Montpelier’s 2,650 acres.

Since the site was abandoned on May 4, 1864, the 5-acre encampment that included huts with hearths laid out in 50-men streets has been nearly untouched. In an exciting discovery, Montpelier’s archaeologists have excavated four of these hut sites, and they are featured as part of a ¾-mile interpretive trail.

Also included on the tours will be the Gilmore Cabin, which is the post-Civil War home of freedman George Gilmore, his wife Polly and their five children. Born a slave at Montpelier during James Madison’s first presidential term, Gilmore was emancipated because of the Civil War. Following his freedom in the late 1860s, he leased nearby land from Dr. James A. Madison, a grandson the president’s brother. The 1873 home he built has been fully restored and opened to the public in 2005. It is the only restored Freedman cabin in Virginia.

Since 2003, Montpelier’s 26-room, 12,261-square-foot mansion has been undergoing the most significant historical restoration in the nation to return it to the home James and Dolley Madison created. Completion of the $24 million project will be celebrated on Constitution Day, Sept. 17, with a Restoration Celebration that will be attended by numerous national dignitaries and luminaries. Admission to Montpelier will be free that day, honoring Mr. Madison – the Father of the Constitution, architect of the Bill of Rights and fourth president of the United States.

Of course, there’s more to do around us than just go to these exciting events at Montpelier. And it’s going to take you more than one day to do it all!

We are surrounded by some of the state’s finest wineries – Gray Ghost, Old House, Keswick, Prince Michel, Horton, Barboursville, Gadino Cellars, Three Foxes and Pearmund, just to name a few.

And we’re within an hour’s drive of historic Charlottesville and Fredericksburg or the always scenic Skyline Drive. And then there are the galleries, antique shops and quaint markets.

So, if you reserve for the Civil War encampment on August 1-3 and mention you read this blog entry and we’ll give you $100 off a two-night stay with dinner at least one of the nights! You can make reservations on-line from our website,, or call us at 800-385-4936.