The nation's first drive-in theater reportedly got its start in New Jersey, way back in 1933. By the World War II years, drive-in movie theaters were popping up all over Virginia.
At the end of the 20th century, nearly all of them had faded out of existence. So many aspects of modern life had changed. Today, there there are only six still operating in the Old Dominion. Two of them can be found along historic U.S. Route 11 here in the Shenandoah Valley.
Hull's Drive-in is located a couple of miles north of Lexington, Va. in Rockbridge County. It opened in 1950 as the Lee Drive-In. That year may have been the perfect time to open a drive-in theater, seeing as it was at the start of a big decade for drive-in theaters across the country.
Sebert W. Hull and his wife, a local couple from Lexington, purchased the drive-in theater seven years later, and changed it's name to Hull's Drive-in. Known for their friendly way of doing business, they kept it going until Mr. Sebert passed away in 1999. That year, for the first time in its history, the theater shut down.
Then, thanks to a community support group that was hastily formed to take it over as a non-profit operation, the feature film schedule was back before the year 2000 rang in. The quick action by a concerned group of people allowed the theater to hang on to its record of continuous operation since it opened.Read more...
The oldest, biggest, most unique and nostalgic Shenandoah Valley county fairs happen this month. Shenandoah County Fair, the oldest in the Valley, adds parimutuel harness racing this year. The Rockingham County Fair is another big August event. Experience an exciting and nostalgicValley vibe on a warm summer evening at the fairgrounds!
382 High St. Within the Frame: A Portrait Exhibit. Portraits from the Harrisonburg-Rockingham County Historical Society collection capture men and women of the 18th, 19th, and 20th centuries through a variety of media, including paint, charcoal, silhouette, and tintype. Runs through the summer months.
Blandy Library. Fourth Thursday of the month, from 1 p.m. to 2 p.m. Participants should read book before then meeting. Free admission. For more information, visit blandy.virginia.edu.
Fire House Gallery, 23 East Main St. Lunchbox Jam Session at 12 p.m. every Thursday. For more information, call 540-955-4001 or visit www.firehousegalleryva.com
Visitor Contact Station 7712 Main St., Middletown, Va. National Park Service Centennial Celebration. 100 thanniversary of the National Park Service. Cake and light refreshments. Free admission. For more information, call 540-869-3051 or visit www.nps.gov/cebe
Extreme Mustang Makeover and Adoption. Aug. 25-27. 100-day-trained Mustangs. Adult Mustangs will be available for adoption. For more information, visit virginiahorsecenter.org
Cedar Creek and Belle Grove National Historical Park, front lawn. 1864 Shenandoah Valley Campaigns in a Box. 30 minute program provides an overview of either the the 1862 or 1864 Shenandoah Valley Civil War campaigns. Free admission, open to the public. For more information, visit www.nps.gov/cebe
National Park Service Birthday Weekend Aug. 25 - 28. Entrance fees will be waived to celebrate and honor the National Park Service 96th Birthday. For more information, visit nps.gov/shen
41 Court Square. National Theatre Live: The Audience. Two-night screening of the recorded live production of The Audience - featuring Helen Mirren's multi-award-winning performance as Queen Elizabeth II. Aug. 24-25 at 7:35 p.m. Members save 20 percent off admission price and get free popcorn. Tickets: $14, seniors and students, $12. Ages under 13, $10. For more information, visit valleyarts.org/cst
95 Chalmers Ct. Every Thursday from 6 p.m. to 8 p.m. Play old-time music, or just listen. Family friendly event. Barns bar open untill 8 p.m. For more information, visit www.barnsofrosehill.org.
10 S. Market St. Twelfth Night performance at 7:30 p.m. Talk-back performance. For more information, call 540-851-1733 or visit www.americanshakespearecenter.com
Council Chambers in the Woodstock Town Hall, 135 North Main St. Susan Walls: The DAR, its history and its role in Shenandoah County. Hosted by Narrow Passage Chapter of the Daughters of the American Resolution. Doors open at 6:30 p.m. Free admission, open to the public. For more information, call woodstockmuseumva.org or visit 540-335-2162
5 Fairlane Dr. Aug. 21 - Aug. 27. Food, rides, and games. Booths in commercial and livestock buildings. Gates open 4 p.m. 4-H exhibits. Horse show Aug. 20, Kids night Aug. 22, Aug. 24 tractor pull. Live music concert on Aug. 25. Demolition derby Aug. 26-27. For more information, visit pagevalleyfair.org
Kitchens Orchard and Farm Market, 1025 Kitchen Orchard Rd. Spring hours: Thursdays, Fridays and Saturdays from 9 a.m. to 4 p.m. Fresh produce and fruit, homemade goods, jams and local and state wines and spirits. For more information, visit www.kitchensfarmmarket.com.
One-hour, costumed, living history interpretive program about the early days of the park. Big Meadows Amphitheater, at 8:30 p.m. For more information, visit www.nps.gov/shen
Daleville Town Center, 90 Town Center St. Party in the Park. The Tams, soul and R and B music. Admission: $6. Ages under 12 admitted free. For more information, visit www.dalevilletowncenter.com
336 Belle Grove Rd. Belle Grove Plantation front yard. Belle Grove in a Box. 30 minute interactive orientation for all ages about the history and settlement of the Shenandoah Valley, the Battle of Cedar Creek and the impact of the Civil War on the Valley. Various props from a box to visually interpret surrounding landscape features. Aug. 22-26, Aug 29-31 at 11:30 a.m. Aug. 28 at 2:30 p.m.
ShenandoahValley.com is owned and operated by Shenandoah Valley Productions, a little “mom-and-pop” business, but one that’s located right here in the region. Our mission has long been to showcase the area’s visual beauty, unique “Valley” people and culture and, of course, some really, really rich history.
We first fell in love with Virginia in 1970, courtesy of the U.S. Navy, stationed in Norfolk. That was the year Virginia officially declared itself “for lovers.” But for us, the real love affair started in 1977, when we first visited the Shenandoah Valley on our wedding night. We moved here a year later, and well ...we are still here!
So it’s kind of a long story how we got from 1978 to this website, but here it is.
Website background photos are provided by a select group of photographers from across the region who share their own love of the Valley through the lenses of their cameras. Words alone may not really describe the place.
Our regional events listings are always up to date, and we’re not really selling anything on here. In fact, we get no outside funding, but are wholly independent. Like many of our friends and neighbors who also feel blessed to live here, free and independent, surrounded by peace and beauty.
Each month we head out to some part of this diverse region and do a feature story and travel video about it -- some cool event, piece of history or special place that makes the name "Shenandoah" so uniquely known worldwide.
So, come and set a spell, and please also consider making a donation. Either way, we’re glad you stopped by. Come on back to see us again!
Oh, and please visit our Facebook page, too.
Union forces burned or destroyed many barns in the Shenandoah Valley during the Civil War. Some survived and others were rebuilt. The Valley recovered and today continues on as a productive farming region.