Monthly Archives

October 2014

Local Spots

Pick your own pumpkins

October 9, 2014

Pumpkin picking

A pumpkin is the epitome of Fall. Having one on the front porch is almost a rite of passage for the weather to finally get cold and for Halloween to arrive. Picking your own pumpkin out of the field is even more festive. Growing up, all I would have to do is walk into our 10 acres of gardens and clip one off the vine. This year was truly my first pumpkin patch experience, and I really enjoyed it. We headed into the farmland of Pungo and stopped at Cullipher Farm‘s pumpkin patch, a few miles away from their farm stand. Armed with very large clipper shears, and tugging a metal wagon, we trudged into fields full of gleaming orange and white pumpkins. THE perfect pumpkin was out there, and we were going to find it. And pick it, we did (along with a wagon full of assorted sizes & colors).

To find the perfect patch: Cullipher Farm | Hunt Club Farm | Brookdale Farm

Painted pumpkins





October 7, 2014

Fall in the park

Bikes on VB Boardwalk


I must admit, Fall happens to be my favorite time of year to be active outside. What’s not to love? Cool temperatures, and mosquito free evenings. It’s truly the perfect time to take advantage of the low temperatures when you don’t feel like your entire body is about to melt into the pavement or sand.

Don’t forget to dress warmly. Layers under your coat, gloves, warm socks, hat, etc. Better to be prepared, than cold!

  • Take a hike out of the wind in First Landing State Park. Maybe it’s the Vermonter in me, but one of my favorite places to visit during Autumn is the Park. It’s almost as if I’m back in the Green Mountains with the beautiful changing foliage.
  • Cruise down the 3 miles and 27 feet of Virginia Beach’s Boardwalk on your beach cruiser. I bet you’ll run into at least one of your friends doing the exact same thing! Often, I like to go even further down past the Cavalier and zip onto Ocean Front Avenue. If you bike slowly, you can check out the beautiful houses that hug the sand.
  • Stroll down the miles of beach along the shoreline. There is a lot of beach to cover if you start in the 40s and head towards Fort Story! Breathe in the ocean breeze, watch the surfers and paddleboarders ride the waves and brave the cold. Dog owners, your beloved four-legged friends are allowed on the beach un-leashed until Spring.

What are your favorite out-of-doors activities to do in the Fall?

Just asking...

A Word With: Holly Henry

October 2, 2014

Holly Henry Paddling

I met Holly a few years ago at my favorite local gym, Wareing’s. She is always out and about around town, and on the beach. A local gal all the way!

Online Producer at WTKR NewsChannel 3

Going to the beach, paddleboarding, working out, doing classes and yoga at Wareing’s Gym, tennis, running on the boardwalk, reading (I’m in a book club, I’m a nerd, haha), and mowing the lawn with our old school lawn mower! And cooking with Kiel, my boyfriend. I also write a lot. Aside from being an online producer for WTKR, I also write stories for And I’m a contributing writer for a new up and coming magazine for Hampton Roads, called Bonfire.

Are YOU a VB “local”?
Yes – to the core! Other than the four years I attended Radford University, I have always lived in the 23451.

Favorite family activity to do in Virginia Beach
Going to the beach, stand-up paddleboarding – and running/walking on the boardwalk. I literally run or walk on the boardwalk five days a week year round, on a normal week. It’s my go-to place to run and do some thinking. I love it.

Top 5 “must have” items for going to the beach
Water, for sure; a towel, the paddleboard, sometimes a chair, sunglasses, and sunscreen.

A perfect date with your significant other
My favorite thing to do with Kiel is to make dinner together, especially rolling sushi, talking and catching up. We always have more and more things to say, we can never run out of conversation. We love just going to the beach together for hours, no matter what season. We also love going to the bay, and just hanging out. Kiel is from New Kent and then lived in Richmond, so we also love to go to the river. It’s really peaceful. We love hanging with our awesome Australian Shepherd, Browning.

Favorite restaurant
Beach PubThai Arroy, and Big Sam’s. Comfortable and relaxing. I also love Isle of Capri. But as far as groceries – I totally encourage eating local and shopping local if you can – I love Old Beach Farmers Market, and Cullipher Farm Market. Check them out if you haven’t been.

Go-to drink{s} at the moment
Honestly I love any light beer – I probably need to try new things!

Something you CAN’T live without
Kiel, my family, close friends, and our pets – they are priceless to me. Oh and also…post it notes. It’s out of control, I am always writing down ideas and lists and things going through my head… I know, it’s just crazy!

What’s on your bucket list?
Going to Croatia with Kiel, and visiting the Adriatic Coast. Kiel is of Croatian descent, and it’s something we have wanted to do for a while.

Local tip
There are three times a year that you avoid the Oceanfront – Memorial Day, Labor Day, and 4th of July. Other than that, you’re usually good – you usually have your secret spots for parking and such.

Any events in Hampton Roads that you’re looking forward to?
I love Neptune Festival, and the Shriners Parade. I have gone since I was a kid, and I love the little cars, and when they give out candy (not sure if they still do, though!). It’s nostalgic for me.

Back to Basics

Welcome to VB Basics

October 1, 2014

VB Basics is an open invitation to rediscover and reconnect. Rediscover the heritage of our beautiful city of Virginia Beach, notice the old that typically escapes us in our day to day movements around the neighborhood, and celebrate new sprouts of life and culture on our streets and our shores. Reconnect with ourselves, nature, and each other. Take back time, regain our senses, step back and observe. There is so much to enjoy and so many relationships to treasure around here.

“Do the best that you can in the place you are at, and be kind”

– Scott Nearing

About Tessa

As an import from a vegetable farm in Vermont who married a VB native, I have immersed myself in the culture and lifestyle of Virginia Beach and the Hampton Roads area for many years. I share both a local and outside perspective on what this vibrant and diverse community has to offer from entertainment, to food, to outdoor activities and the beach, in an effort to maximize your experience whether you’re a seasoned local or a curious tourist. I encourage you to join me on this journey and to follow along as I take a soulful quest to reconnect with the basics and explore Virginia Beach.