Week of September October 13-19, 2014
Shops and restaurants are restocked, streets are cleaned and folks are rested from the cyclone of activity that surrounded Apple Butter Festival. All attention is focused on celebrating the beauty and charm of autumn with its brisk nights and splendid technicolor roadsides, hillsides and riversides.
When it comes to special events this weekend, it's all about music.
Friday night at 7:30pm there's an intriguing concert/presentation at the Ice House. Dr. Tina Chancey, "history detective" and musician answers the burning question of who was the most popular animated hero before Mickey Mouse in her show: Cartoons That Shook the World: Adventures in Animation and Fantasy. The program is a celebration of the earliest experiments in animation, demonstrating the labor-intensive process of turning hand-drawn cartoons into live-action films, with Cat stars such as Felix and Walt Disney's Julius. Tina Chancey, master of early music and early string instruments, provides music for this chronological exploration. You've never seen/heard anything like this so get here early this weekend. There's also music on Friday at the Troubadour Lounge at 9pm with the fabulous Carpenter Ants. If you're ready for a overdose of great music of totally different sorts, you should be able to make both.
On Saturday at 7pm the four-piece string band Allegheny Ramblers perform old time, folk and bluegrass at The New Earth Granary. There's more bluegrass in the lounge at Tari's Cafe on Saturday night from 8-11 p.m with the Lickety Split Banjo Boys. A different pace of music happens on Saturday from 6:30 pm – 8:30 pm when Bonnie plays piano in the Gallery Room at the Country Inn. Sunday afternoon at 4pm, award-winning organist Julie Vidrick Evans gives a free recital at the Presbyterian Church.
The Star Theatre is showing Pierce Brosnan in the spy thriller, "November Man" on Friday, Saturday and Sunday at 8pm. The movie is rated R but the popcorn is perfect for all ages.
Life through the month of October is dominated by the pleasures of a particularly colorful month of the year. There are drives to be taken and hikes to appreciate the fall foliage. At Cacapon State Park, meet at 3pm on Saturday for a naturalist led hike that explores what makes the leaves turn color. Check out the spectacular view from Panorama Overlook anytime -- and use the Washington Heritage Trail National Scenic Byway as a way to tour the county checking out great autumn scenery while learning history.
Shopping is also a big attraction -- always. Stroll the historic downtown with its shop-lined streets and explore all the treasures that can be found in shops that are owner-operated with specially chosen products of all sorts. One special event is at Jules, Enchanting Gifts and Collectibles celebrating their 17 years in business by offering all their puzzles at 17% off from now through Sunday. Open daily at 11am. Art shopping is found at several locations in town including Mountain Laurel Gallery, Lions Lair, Heath Studios and especially the Ice House Gallery. Not only is there selection from more than two dozen area artists but also see the special exhibits: Autumn Expressions and a photo exhibit of birds in nature.
Food is a major attraction in Berkeley Springs. The fine dining locales are all featuring autumn menus. There's special fun at the Farmers Market on Sunday from 10am to 2pm with a Fall Harvest Festival where ten vendors feature the best of the fall harvest and a sampling station offers tastes of all things sweet potato including Sweet Potato Soup with Bacon, Sweet Potato Pone (perfect for holiday dinners) and baked sweet potato fries.
For a unique food-related activity on Saturday from 11am to 4pm come to Cacapon State Park attend the Outdoor Cooking Class presented by the Potomac Valley Audubon Society at the Cacapon Campfire Circle, led by master naturalist Clark Dixon. It will provide instruction and practice in cooking outdoors without pots and pans or kitchen utensils.
Always the water is a magenta for drawing folks here. As the indoor season approaches, get those summer aches and dead skin out of your life with massages, facials and various impressive skin treatments at our several spas.
One of the best parts of an autumn weekend is the selection of places to stay that can find you along a river, atop a ridge, in the woods or in town -- each locale with its own special splendor. There are cabins and vacation homes, inns and B&Bs and even a couple campgrounds. Check the entire list, make your choice and come this weekend to enjoy the pleasures of autumn in the nearby mountains. The high color disappears quickly so don't miss a peak weekend.