Southwest Virginia: Best Living & Recreation Winners 2022 – Virginia Living




Annual Charity Event

1st: Boots & Bowties

Woodbrook Limousin Farms, Abingdon

Boots and Bowties is a charity event benefiting the Johnston Memorial Cancer Center in Abingdon. Held at the beautiful Woodbrook Farms, attendees enjoy dinner and desserts, great music, and a silent auction, all for a good cause. Auction items include vacations, jewelry, sports memorabilia, and more.

2nd: The Charity League of Martinsville/Henry County Bargain Fair

CharityLeague. org

3rd: Cancer Kids and Christmas, Narrows


Art Event

1st: Virginia Highlands Festival

1 Partnership Cir., Abingdon

VaHighlandsFestival. org , 276-623-5266

The first Virginia Highlands Festival was held in 1949 to preserve and celebrate the cultural heritage of the area. Over the decades, it has grown to include even more artists, craftsmen, and performers from Virginia’s Southwest. Organizers take pride in the particular worldly cultural and creative exchange it provides.

2nd: Art In Bloom, William King Museum of Art, Abingdon

WilliamKingMuseum. org , 276-628-5005

3rd: Chautauqua Festival, Wytheville

Wythe-Arts. org , 276-228-6855

Entertainment for Adults

1st: McClains at First & Main

1614 S. Primary St ., Blacksburg

McClainsBlacksburg. com , 540-242-5246

McClains at First & Main is a dining, bowling, and arcade experience. Utilizing one of their several party packages, plan a celebration or special occasion with friends and family. The bowling lanes plus arcade help create an air of excitement as you enjoy socializing. Good food, local brews, music, a good arcade and bowling—McClains has it all.

2nd: Blue Ridge Axe Throwing, Roanoke

BlueRidgeAxeThrowing. com , 540-266-7293

3rd: State Street Brewing, Bristol

StateStreetBrewing. com , 276-644-3773


1st: Bristol Rhythm & Roots Reunion

416 State St ., Bristol

BristolRhythm. com , 423-573-1927

The Bristol Rhythm & Roots Reunion, held annually at the Birthplace of Country Music Museum, is a three-day music festival with more than 100 live music acts performing on over a dozen outdoor stages and indoor venues. This festival “showcases the very best in Appalachian roots music’s past, present, and future. ”

2nd: FloydFest

FloydFest. com , 888-823-3787

3rd: Blue Ridge Folklife Festival, Ferrum

BlueRidgeInstitute. org , 540-365-4416

Historic Theater

1st: Barter Theatre

127 W. Main St, Abingdon

BarterTheatre. com , 276-628-3991

The Barter Theatre opened its doors in 1933, proclaiming “with vegetables you cannot sell, you can buy a good laugh, ” referring to the ticket price being equivalent to a piece of produce. It has a long history of innovation, big dreams, and the Appalachian culture of tenacity that has ensured the theater’s survival and prosperity for nearly 90 years.

2nd: The Grandin Theatre, Roanoke

GrandinTheatre. com , 540-345-6177

3rd: Mill Mountain Theatre, Roanoke

MillMountain. org , 540-342-5740


1st: LOVEwork at Burke’s Garden

Burke’s Garden Rd., Tazewell

Virginia. org , 276-322-1345

Located right off of Virginia Scenic Byway Route 623, this LOVE sign is a nod to the many barn quilts that can be found all over Burke’s Garden. This red, black, and white sign has a quilted design and rests on the side of a barn in Tazewell—a picture-perfect opportunity!

2nd: LOVEwork at Black Dog Salvage, Roanoke

Virginia. org , 540-343-6200

3rd: LOVEwork in Abingdon, Abingdon

VisitAbingdonVirginia. com , 276-676-2282


1st: Birthplace of Country Music Museum

101 Country Music Way, Bristol

BirthPlaceOfCountryMusic. org , 423-573-1927

As an affiliate of the Smithsonian Institution, this museum celebrates the 1927 “Bristol Sessions, ” which recorded some of the earliest country music in America. Returning this September is the Bristol Rhythm & Roots Reunion, a three-day songs festival with more than 100 live music acts.

2nd: Taubman Museum of Art, Roanoke

TaubmanMuseum. org , 540-342-5760

third: Virginia Museum of Natural History, Martinsville

VMNH. net , 276-634-4141

Music Venue

1st: Harvester Performance Center

450 Franklin St ., Rocky Mount

Harvester-Music. com , 540-484-8277

Harvester Performance Center opened inside April 2014 with the mission of bringing people to Rocky Mount to enjoy live music and experience the town’s charm. Its first national act to perform was The Indigo Girls and it has since hosted stars like Willie Nelson, Merle Haggard, and Brandi Carlile.

2nd: Floyd Country Store

FloydCountryStore. possuindo , 540-745-4563

3rd: Barter Theatre, Abingdon

BarterTheatre. com , 276-628-3991

Performing Arts Company

1st: Barter Theatre

127 W. Main St ., Abingdon

BarterTheatre. com , 276-628-3991

Under the leadership of Producing Artistic Director Katy Brown, the Barter Theatre’s bevy of resident artists reside and work year-round in Abingdon. From directing, design, and stage management professionals, to three acting companies, as well as in-house drama instructors for adults and children, the playhouse is truly the beating artistic heart of South west Virginia.  

2nd: Mill Mountain Theatre, Roanoke

MillMountain. org , 540-342-5740

3rd: Appalachia Cultural Arts Center, Appalachia

AppalachiaCulturalArts. apresentando , Facebook: @AppalachiaCulturalArtsCenter 

Radio Station

1st: WSLC FM 94. 9

3934 Electric Rd., Roanoke

949StarCountry. com , 540-387-0234

WSLC 94. 9 FM, or “Star Nation, ” is a country songs radio station serving the New River Valley. Featured artists include Kelsea Ballerini, Tim McGraw, Toby Keith, and many more. Tune in to the Star Country morning show every weekday from 6: 00 a. m. to 10: 00 a. m.

2nd: WXLK FM 92. 3, Roanoke

K92Radio. com , 540-774-9236

third: WFIR AM 960, Roanoke

WFIRNews. possuindo , 540-345-5955

Special Event Venue

1st: Hotel Roanoke

110 Shenandoah Ave., Roanoke

HotelRoanoke. apresentando , 540-985-5900

The particular elegant, Tudor-revival style Hotel Roanoke, now part of Hilton’s Curio Collection, was built in 1882 by what was then the Norfolk and Western Railway. After decades of renovations, it remains a fixture in Roanoke’s downtown landscape, blending antique decor with modern comforts. Well-suited for conferences and events, it includes 63, 000 square feet of meeting space, as well as an enclosed walkway that connects to the city.  

2nd: Harvester Performance Center, Rocky Support

Harvester-Music. com , 540-484-8277

3rd: The Martha Washington Inn & Spa, Abingdon

TheMartha. com , 276-628-3161


Dog Groomer

first: Biscuits & Bubbles

109 W. Main St, Salem

Facebook: @BiscuitsAndBubbles , 540-378-5200

Biscuits & Bubbles are all about canine culture. From doggie daycare to grooming and boarding, this dog-centric team in Salem promises to make your pet a priority. A budget-friendly, do-it-yourself option provides pet owners with all the essentials, like shampoo, towels, and blow dryers. Family owned and operated, Cookies & Bubbles treats almost all its customers like family.  

2nd: Dog Daze Grooming Salon, Galax

Facebook: @DogDazeGroomingSalon , 276-236-7877

3rd: Diva Dogs Canine Spa, Christiansburg

Fb: @DivaDogsCanineSpa , 540-392-4548

Dog Training 

1st: Beyond Sit And Stay Professional Dog Training

224 St . Johns Way Rd., Chilhowie

PSHUPE. webs. com , 276-685-1154

Owned and operated by a Certified Trainer, Beyond Sit and Stay provides training to pet owners, law enforcement agencies, and others. Offering many different coaching programs to fit your needs, including private lessons, owner Paula Shupe has over 25 years of expertise and understanding of dog behavior. She enlists different training techniques to benefit each need.

2nd: BarksBurg Canines, New River Valley

BarksBurgDogs. com

3rd: Appalachian Canine Coaching, Sugar Grove

AppalachianCanineCoaching. com , 276-685-2752

Pet Boarding/Day Care

1st: Biscuits & Bubbles

109 W. Major St ., Salem

Facebook: @BiscuitsAndBubbles , 540-378-5200

The owners of Biscuits and Bubbles decided that Salem needed a grooming and daycare boarding kennel just for dogs. After a successful six years, they expanded in 2009 to include grooming, boarding, and socialization skill training. The company’s focus on exceptional care and meeting grooming, boarding, and socialization needs ensures that you and your canine companion have a happy experience.  

2nd: Canine Cottage, Roanoke

CanineCottageRoanoke. possuindo , 540-206-3647

third: Buddy’s Boarding, Floyd

Facebook: @BuddysBoarding , 540-745-4465

Veterinary Hospital

1st: Animal Care Clinic

3649 Stoney Fork Rd., Wytheville

WythevilleAnimalCare. apresentando , 276-228-2727

This veterinary care clinic plus animal hospital is run by licensed veterinarian Dr . Tiffanie Walters. Services offered include preventative healthcare, microchipping, radiology, surgery, and more. Though the facility may be small, Pet Care Clinic is a full-service hospital where staff “treats your pets like the valued family members they are. ”

second: Big Lick Veterinary Services, Roanoke

BigLickVet. com , 540-776-0700

3rd: Abingdon Animal Medical Center, Abingdon

MyAbingdonVet. com , 276-628-9655


Family Entertainment

1st: Barter Theatre

127 W. Main St ., Abingdon

BarterTheatre. com , 276-628-3991

From productions associated with Shakespeare’s Romeo and Juliet to the world premiere of the musical Kentucky Spring , there’s never a dull moment at Barter Theatre, a fitting in Abingdon’s art scene since 1933. In warm weather, an open-air Moonlite Drive-In streams sound through your car’s radio while you watch actors live on stage and simulcast on the big screen.    

2nd: Clinch River Adventures, St . Paul

ClinchRiverAdventures. com , 276-275-4154

3rd: Downtown Roanoke

DowntownRoanoke. org , 540-342-2028

K-12 Independent School

1st: Carlisle School

300 Carlisle Rd., Axton

CarlisleSchool. org , 276-632-7288

This independent, college preparatory school offers a transformative learning experience with a balanced curriculum. Small class sizes afford teachers the ability to focus on individual attention, where the uniqueness of each student is recognized and fostered. Carlisle’s philosophy is to guide their curiosity and fuel their desire to learn through discovery and project-based studying.  

2nd: Christian Heritage Academy, Rocky Mount

CHAKnights. org , 540-483-5855

3rd: Glowing blue Mountain School, Floyd

BlueMountainSchool. net , 540-745-4234


1st: Carlisle School

300 Carlisle Rd., Axton

CarlisleSchool. org , 276-632-7288

Carlisle’s Preschool provides a transformative learning journey of discovery for every child. With a focus on the whole child’s physical, social, and academic requirements, preschoolers gain independence in a safe environment that is nurturing, enriching, and diverse. Faculty engages students in child-centered learning experiences that foster collaboration with their peers while immersed in discovery-based activities.

2nd: Building Bridges Child Development, Dublin

BuildingBridgesCDC. center , 540-674-0101

3rd: Central United Methodist Church, Radford

CUMCRadford. org , 540-639-3529

Summer Camp

1st: Southwest Virginia 4-H Educational Center

25236 Hillman Hwy., Abingdon

SWVA4HCenter. org , 276-676-6180

Located in Washington County, the particular Southwest Virginia 4-H Educational Center has been serving the community at its historic 79-acre facility since 1960. Situated on a property of rolling meadows and woodlands, the center provides affordable, accessible day and residential camping programs that focus on educational and cultural enrichment and outreach.

2nd: Camp Bethel Ministries, Wise

CampBethel. com , 276-328-6876

3rd: Blue Ridge Christian Camp, McCoy

BlueRidgeChristian. org , 540-639-9147


Bed & Breakfast

1st: Early Inn at the Grove

50 Floyd Ave., Rocky Mount

EarlyInn. com , 540-524-2525

Tucked behind the pines, the Early Inn at the Grove is an 1854 Greek-revival boutique hotel that sets on 10 scenic acres. Take a stroll through the wildflower-covered property, settle into the historic library with a good book, or enjoy drinks on the patio from the Breezeway Bar. Every guest leaves feeling pampered and well-rested.

2nd: The Tailo’s Lodging, Abingdon

ATailorsLodging. com , 276-628-7119

3rd: Rockwood Manor, Dublin

Rockwood-Manor. com , 540-674-1328

Historic Site

1st: Barter Theatre

127 W. Main St ., Abingdon

BarterTheatre. com , 276-628-3991

The longest running professional theater in the U. S., Barter Theatre was founded by Robert Porterfield during the Great Depression. His formula was ingenious: the price of admission was 40 cents, or even bartering the equivalent of produce from the area’s farms and gardens that would otherwise be rotting in fields. Nearly a century later, Barter remains the particular arts epicenter of this culturally rich region.

2nd: Mabry Mill, Meadows of Dan

NPS. gov , 276-952-2947

3rd: Booker T. Washington National Monument, Hardy

NPS. gov , 540-721-2094


1st: Hotel Roanoke

110 Shenandoah Ave., Roanoke

HotelRoanoke. com , 540-985-5900

With 329 luxuriously appointed guest rooms and ample convention space to hold meetings, conferences, and special events, on-site amenities also include two restaurants, a coffee bar, spa services, and a business center. In 1993, a multi-million dollar restoration of this sprawling, 19th-century Tudor Revival hotel guaranteed its position as the grand centerpiece of the city.  

2nd: Hotel Floyd

HotelFloyd. com , 844-851-5963

third: The Martha Washington Resort & Spa, Abingdon

TheMartha. com , 276-628-3161


1st: The Martha Washington Inn & Spa

150 Watts. Main St ., Abingdon

TheMartha. com , 276-628-3161

This historical inn was originally integrated 1832 as a private residence for General Francis Preston and his family. It didn’t open as a hotel until 1935, but now has over 60 rooms and suites, a swimming pool, putt golf, and, of course , the spa. The Southern elegance of this resort makes it a perfect place for weddings plus romantic getaways.

2nd: Hill Lake Lodge, Pembroke

MtnLakeLodge. com , 540-626-7121

3rd: Primland, Meadows of Dan

Primland. com , 855-876-6593

Tourist Attraction

first: Blue Ridge Parkway

BlueRidgeParkway. org , 828-670-1924

The particular majestic highland boulevard from the Blue Ridge Parkway winds through the Appalachian mountains and sees about 15 million annual visitors. Along with providing scenic corridors of the tri-state region of Virginia, North Carolina, and Tennessee, the Azure Ridge Parkway also offers a broad range of recreation, shopping, lodging, dining, and support services to the community.

2nd: Dicker Theatre, Abingdon

BarterTheatre. com , 276-628-3991

3rd: Breaks Interstate Park

BreaksPark. com , 276-865-4413


Dance Studio

1st: A-List Dance Academy

455 S. Main St, Rocky Mount

AListDanceAcademy. com , 540-483-0307

A-List Dance Academy opened just last year and offers a wide variety of dance classes to dancers of all ages. Styles include ballet, hip hop, jazz, clogging, and more. The seven instructors have an immense amount of experience, and also passion and dedication with regard to what they do.

2nd: Derek Wagner Dance Center, Radford

RadfordDance. com , 540-835-3334

3rd: Ardell Stone School of Dancing, Inc., Roanoke

ArdellStoneDance. com , 540-774-8136

Golf Course

1st: Chatmoss Country Club

550 Mt. Olivet Rd., Martinsville

ChatMossCC. org , 276-638-2484

This 18-hole golf course, designed by J. Ellis Maples, spans well over 6, 000 yards of the Chatmoss Nation Club’s estate. Also on the premises is a driving range and practice putting green. After a round, take a dip in the club pool, or visit the Boxwood Grille for a hearty meal.

2nd: Draper Valley Golf Club

DraperValleyGolf. com , 866-980-4653

3rd: Ballyhack Golf Club, Roanoke

DormieNetwork. com , 540-427-1395


1st: Body by Lee

889 Empire Doctor SW, Abingdon

BodyByLee. com , 276-739-0188

Body by Lee is a 24-hour fitness facility with free weights, a women’s-only facility, machine weights, cardio machines, fitness studios, and much more. Body by Lee also offers personal training, either in the gym, at home, or virtually. Customers love the cleanliness of the fitness center and have nothing but praise for the personal training services.

2nd: Carilion Wellness, Multiple locations

CarilionWellness. com , 540-853-0000

3rd: Coomes Recreation Center, Abingdon

CoomesCenter. com , 276-623-5279

Hiking or Biking Trail

1st: Virginia Creeper Trail

300 Green Spring Rd., Abingdon

VaCreeperTrail. org

The Virginia Creeper Trail stands out from others due in part to its long, storied history plus uniquely beautiful landscape. The alpine-forested scapes near Whitetop roll through the agricultural area of Damascus all the way to the more suburban Abingdon—the trail sees more than 225, 000 outside adventure seekers annually.

2nd: Cascade Falls Trailhead, Pembroke

FS. USDA. gov , 540-552-4641

3rd: Dick & Willie Passage Rail Trail, Martinsville

Virginia. org , 276-634-4640

Specialty Fitness

1st: Blacksburg Boxing and Fitness

115 S. Hill Dr ., Blacksburg

BlacksburgBoxingAndFitness. com , 540-315-3231

Kevin plus Augusta Bowen founded this particular family-owned gym in 2015. As the only boxing-specific coaching gym in Blacksburg, they offer a variety of classes, like “BOXING 101” for beginners, “Fighter-Fit, ” “Weekend Warrior, ” and even low-intensity classes for those who are just starting out.  

2nd: 460 Fitness, Blacksburg

460Fitness. com , 540-509-1460

3rd: Crimper’s Climbing Gym, Christiansburg

CrimpersClimbing. com , 540-251-3040

Tennis Facility

1st: Chatmoss Residential area

550 Mt. Olivet Rd., Martinsville

ChatMossCC. org , 276-638-2484

With six outdoor clay courts and three indoor climate-controlled courts, Chatmoss Country Club offers year-round tennis programs. After a lesson or a friendly match, feel free to take a dip in the Chatmoss pool, or visit the Boxwood Grille for a bite to eat.

second: Coomes Recreation Center, Abingdon

CoomesCenter. possuindo , 276-623-5279

3rd: Burrows-Burleson Tennis Center, Blacksburg

VT. edu , 540-231-5908

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