Just north of our homebase and west of Washington D.C. is the town of Winchester, Virginia. Among the various things that it is known for, one that is very important to Mama Nomad, is that it is the hometown of Patsy Cline. Needless to say, we had to pay the city a visit. And, to my surprise, there is a lot more to Winchester than I originally anticipated.
First thing when we arrived was head to Patsy Cline’s house. It is a nondescript, two-story home in a quaint little neighborhood. It has a historical sign out front as well as a sign that displays when they are open for tours and the cost to tour. We visited out of season so we were not able to venture inside. But, we did get some great shots of the exterior.
From Ms. Cline’s home we ventured out on a tour of the city to see the drug store where Patsy Cline worked and the radio station where her songs were first heard on air. You can also visit the cemetery to see a memorial constructed in her honor as well as visit her final resting place. In different parts of the town you will see various paintings and references to Patsy Cline. If you are a fan, you should stop into Winchester.
In addition to the road down the Patsy Cline memory lane, you will find many other interesting things of note. The first one I want to discuss is Old Town Winchester. This is a section of town, in the downtown area, that stretches for about 2 blocks. It is a brick laden walkway adorned with buildings on both sides. Some of these buildings date back to around the founding of the United States.
What I found extremely interesting is that you will find buildings built in the 1700’s with a new age gift shop or sushi bar next to it. There are a variety of shops and restaurants. You will also find the Civil War Museum and a unique restaurant that was a hotel and, during the Civil War, it was a hospital. They integrated the old with the new quite well and it really works in Old Town Winchester.
One new age side note while you are visiting Old Town Winchester pertains to a bathroom. There is one public restroom. This restroom costs money to use so bring quarters. You deposit the money into the slot and the door opens up like some kind of futuristic room you see on science fiction movies. The bathroom talks to you. You have to push buttons for toilet paper. And it has a timer before the door opens. it was interesting to say the least.
Not too far from Old Town Winchester we found a George Washington Office Museum. It was located in a park with different historical artifacts. This office was used by George Washington for about a year while Fort Loudoun was being built for the Virginia Militia in defense of a 300 mile frontier.
While we were wrapping up our exploration of this little park and office museum, we heard bag pipes. That’s right. Bag pipes. Most would be surprised at this. To The Nomads, it was just another day full of intriguing adventures. A group was preparing for the St. Patrick’s Day celebration. They were practicing outside and it was truly entertaining.
Winchester seems to be a true mix of colonial time with modern era. It is a unique mix and the town seems to be able to pull it off nicely. We did not expect all we found but we were pleasantly surprised. If you are near Winchester, Virginia, we suggest that you put it on your itinerary and do some exploring of your own. Safe Travels.