• Kayaking in Virginia

    Meeting so many wonderful people at Greenock Manor Bed and Breakfast in Orange, we often ask people what it is they would love to do. We have found many dream and plan things for the bucket list, but few schedule those dreams and adventures in for now! Some dream of hiking Blue Ridge Mountain trails. Others want to skydive and then of course there is kayaking in Virginia!

    Dean and I decided to give the local kayak instructor, Beth a call at Rapidan River Kayak Company. We were delighted to find that they are a short 5 minute drive from Greenock Manor. Being eager to prove that we are not ‘over the hill quite yet’ and both having an adventurous spirit we set out on a beautiful summer morning.

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    Beth specializes in guided kayak tours on the picturesque Rapidan River. She is situated only four miles from the world famous historical site, Montpelier. All necessary equipment was included. I was lucky and fast enough to snatch the smartest red kayak, with a piercing look from Dean 🙂

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    Our adventure began with a step by step safety and skill training introduction. We found Beth warm, very professional and thorough. Her most senior clients have been in their seventies, while she has had children join excursions as young as four years old.

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    Once we set off kayaking in the Rapidan River we were delighted. Our spirits lifted being completely surrounded by the natural beauty of Virginia. Further more, the river is framed by towering trees and teaming with fish. On occasion Beth’s clients have spotted wildlife such as, bears, coyote, beaver, deer and many others.

    The river sparkled and soon we were followed by the most beautiful blue crane! What graceful long legs and huge wing span he or she had! In the far distance, Beth pointed out an American Bald Eagle nest. Wow! Probably the greatest find of the day! Originally from South Africa, if we had seen a giraffe or zebra appear amongst the trees I would more than likely have been bored 😉

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    The river twisted round as we gently padded our way. Most noteworthy, at one point we crossed an historical American Civil War site, where soldiers from long ago had heaped pebbles to make a shallow crossing for their horses and carriages. One of their well known camps is directed beside the Rapidan river. Hence this could be a great spot for metal detectors and excavasions.

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    Are you excited yet? Visit Greenock Manor Bed and Breakfast and let us book a suprize kayaking tour for your spouse or group of friends. In conclusion, it’s a memorable, fun and an ‘easy to accomplish’ four mile tour. Finally, as my dad always tells me – don’t postpone, Carpe Diem! (Latin for Seize the Moment) Any questions simply contact us HERE and remember to click to share this article with your friends.

  • Skydiving in Orange! Wedding Venue in the Countryside!

    Every bride wants her wedding day to be unique and remembered forever. Our most recent bride and groom most certainly made their special day unforgettable. On meeting Josie and Mathew, they informed us with a twinkle in their eyes that they were throwing themselves out of an airplane in their wedding attire to seal their marriage!

    This was most certainly a first for us, and Skydive Orange is across the road from Greenock Manor, set to work to make this special wedding idea a reality.skydive orangeOur wonderful couple set out on their adventure as single people, and much to our relief and that of their anxious parents- they both made it safely back to planet earth in one piece!

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    A short drive across the road, our wedding guests made their way to Greenock Manor. The wedding reception was held on our gorgeous spacious wooden deck which was luckily under roof and perfectly sheltered from gentle summer rainfall on that day. Josie’s color choice was pink and black and she wanted a relaxed country feel – easy for us to accomplish due to our farmland setting and country environment.

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    The guests celebrated on the deck with champagne and music, while the bridal party had their wedding photo shoot in our majestic gardens. Their idea was a casual yet chic wedding and this was most certainly achieved.

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    Our wonderful in-house catering team Ashly Kaye’s cooked up a storm for the hungry guests. Josie and Mathew had chosen the wedding barbeque menu to ‘marry’ perfectly with their country theme. Most delightful of all (in my personal opinion was the cheesecake wedding cake topped by C-3PO and his robot soul mate R2-D2 from Star Wars of course!

    Wedding Catering

    Thank you to Josie and Mathew for choosing us as their wedding venue in celebration of such a special day. We wish you a wonderful lifetime together filled with cherished memories and happy times. Please visit us to celebrate your one year wedding anniversary- the honeymoon suite is waiting for you both!

    For couples looking for possible Wedding Venue in the heart of the countryside – please call us or email us to quote. We would love to assist you and plan your special day.

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    Top Tips for planning your Wedding!

    Every girl (and guys of course!) dream all their lives of their wedding day. They want it to be remembered forever. Each have their own ideas of what would make their dream wedding perfect. At Greenock Manor we get many inquiries for country weddings, some smaller wedding receptions and large flamboyant wedding events catering for up to 200 wedding guests as well.

    We like to advise our brides to be on exactly how to structure your special day to make it stress free and as memorable and fun as possible. We decided to write a wedding blog post with the hope that it will help many in planning their special day.

    Here are some great tips to help plan your wedding :

    • Have you arranged a ‘meet and greet person’ to welcome your guests on arrival and direct your guests to where they need to gather? This helps channel in the crowds to the right place and will start off your event smoothly and in an orderly fashion. It will also help the guests feel welcome and relaxed from the moment they arrive.
    • If your DJ starts playing later, do you have list of music (on an ipod possibly?) that you would like to play as background music? Set the atmosphere from the very beginning with some great background music!
    • Who will do the ‘official welcome’ for the guests once the actual wedding ceremony is complete. Your guests will be waiting for you to return from photos and it makes things extra special if the new Mr and Mrs is welcomed officially!
    • How can you add something to your wedding that is unusual and fun? Think of a treasure hunt for the guests while you have your photos taken? Or maybe toasting marshmellows at the fire pit as part of dessert? These are small extras but can make a wedding celebration even more special.
    • Remember to arrange a designated smoking area to prevent accidents and make your event fire safe.
    • Encourage your guests to share transport – this is safer with a designated driver, should they not be staying at Greenock Manor Bed and Breakfast in Orange.
    • If your family is helping you with planning – be sure to get your team a task list to share responsibilities. Delegate with lists so everyone knows exactly what they are responsible for. Helping is all part of the fun and it’s heart warming to know how many family members or close friends appreciate being included. My grandmother, who at that time was in her late 80’s was asked to keep the rings on a little pillow – that was HER responsibility for the day- and she beamed proudly from her seat when asked to hand over the rings. It’s lovely to include people you love, even if its a small responsibility you give them.
    • If children and pets are attending -make sure they are catered for with a proper baby sitter and have Disney TV and snacks, and a comfy place to sleep if they get tired all arranged for them.

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    There is so much more than we would love to share with you, but for that you need to call us on 703 687 7641 or even better visit us at Greenock Manor in Orange, VA in person! We have so much we can offer and would love to be part of your special day and be at your service to create the most special memories ever 🙂 Dean and Chanel

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    Historical Bed and Breakfast in Virginia

    I had a dream! Sound familiar? Well not quite as passionate and inspirational the dream that Dr Martin Luther King had, but it came from my heart all the same. Not many people may have heard of me, I am just an ordinary person born with a purpose and spent half my life travelling the world in search of home and ‘to reach the people I felt I was supposed to meet’. Born at the southern tip of Africa, spent 8 years mentoring business owners in the UK, and flocked across to the land of the brave and the free on the invitation of a very handsome man, my husband.

    So the story begins with my prayer…I asked the Lord, (as He does say if its in His will that He will give us the desires of our hearts) for a Victorian home situated deep in the southern countryside, a wrap around wooden balcony, and a lovely swing on the front porch. I wanted to hear the footsteps of happy visitors on the floorboards in the background, and at sunset watch the light change the colour of the hills as I breath in gratefulness of every blessing God sends us, His people and all his living creatures that sleep, dream and love- just like we do!

    So my love, Dean and I set out one early morning to an auction. It was a random decision after 3 months research of the property market in Virginia. We arent rich and famous and yes drive a humble car, our pooch however is pedigree and we realise such class is just a little above ‘us two gym fundies with our tennis shoes’. The cars and crowds arrive and I whisper ‘Dean my love , it’s in God’s hands so don’t be disappointed’ He only gives to us what is ours and what is not ours we don’t need to long or bother with. Turkish investors, and well known businessmen and women arrive from Washington DC – the bidding starts.

    We stood under the towering 100 year old oak trees while a ‘stern looking’, but professional gentleman starts to call prices out – at super top speed as if we are at the horse races! I sink shyly into my shoes and pray a prayer from my heart. Its ok not to have this house- I mean at the end of the day – it looks like the mansion from Gone With The Wind and I know I am not Scarlett O’Hara! (although as a child I ran around the forest and told the squirrels and birds I was)

    The auction was tense and yes we were outbid…or so I thought until a technical slip turned a miracle our way. It was as if for a moment my heart stopped beating. Are the crowds cheering for us? I looked at my love and said ‘Dean surely they don’t mean the house is ours?’ The rest felt like it was happening in slow motion as we signed to the smiles and somewhat envious eyes of all who were there that day.

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    Greenock Manor…a place where we hope to share inspiration, gratefulness, kindness and loving memories to all who visit us here. It is our new mission. Please visit us and pop in for a stroll in our gardens, I can show you where Col. Lee tethered his horse Traveller back in the days of the old Civil War or walk to our 50 foot towering Magnolia Tree! Dreams and prayers really do come true is what I ‘almost feel I am only able to whisper in order to keep my humility in check. Its as if we were given this huge gift and now we would like to share it with the local wonderful people in the area, our church and anyone who may want to share their wedding day steeped in history. Our new mission is to share and give. What more could bring more joy as its in giving that we receive.