Thursday, June 24, 2021

Out And About In Colonial Williamsburg

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WILLIAMSBURG-Whether you are interested in history, art, gardening, or animals, Colonial Williamsburg has you covered.

Now that covid-19 restrictions have been lifted, Colonial Williamsburg is ramping up efforts to lure visitors back to the Historic Area and will reopen its attractions and restore its programming just in time for summer fun.

Those who prefer to be outside have a plethora of activities to choose from along Duke of Gloucester Street and beyond.

Colonial Williamsburg has more than 30 historic gardens and is home to the only Level 2 certified Arboretum in Virginia. The arboretum boasts 31 different species of oak trees, boxwoods dating back to the 1800s, and two national champion trees, a jujube tree behind King’s Arms Tavern and a paper mulberry tree near Wetherburn’s Tavern.

More than 30,000 annuals are planted yearly in the Historic Area, enabling guests to soak in natural color and beauty any season throughout the year.

Charles Gardner, a certified arborist with Colonial Williamsburg, recommends visiting the gardens behind The Apothecary or behind Christiana Campbell’s Tavern.

“The Apothecary is my favorite garden because it has so many plants with so many beautiful smells,” he said. “The garden behind Christiana Campbell’s has a beautiful topiary and lots of shade, so it’s nice on a hot day. It’s peaceful and quiet.”

Guests can also tour the grounds of The Rockefellers’ Bassett Hall or hike at nearby Bassett Trace Nature Trail, where they may encounter various species of birds including red-headed woodpeckers, yellow-throated warblers, eagles, and owls.

Colonial Williamsburg also has a Rare Breeds Program featuring diverse livestock including Leicester Longwool sheep, American Cream Draft horses, and American Milk Red Devon cattle.

Other outdoor entertainment includes the open-air stage The Play House Stage with the Jug Broke Theatre Co, whose performers hold productions twice daily six days a week throughout the season; the American Indian Encampment site, an interpretive camp where visitors can explore the way of life of regional native Americans during colonial times; and a new special evening program, The Musick that Binds.  The program, held outdoors on the Governor’s Palace Stage, includes music and stories performed by The Governor’s Musick Ensemble. The Musick that Binds will run Tuesdays through June 22.

For a complete list of Colonial Williamsburg’s attractions and programs, visit

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