06 June 2024

Norfolk Admirals Full 2024-25 Schedule

The Norfolk Admirals, proud ECHL affiliates of the Winnipeg Jets and Manitoba Moose, recently announced their schedule for the upcoming 2024-25 season.

The Admirals will play a 72-game regular season schedule comprised of 24 Friday games, 23 Saturday games, 13 Sunday games, eight Wednesday games, three Tuesday games, and one Thursday game.

All home games on Wednesday, Friday, and Saturday will be a 7:05 PM start time with Sunday’s at 3:05 PM.

Along with the traditional road trips to the North Division cities (Adirondack, Maine, Reading, Trois-Rivières, Worcester), Norfolk will travel to three South division cities (Atlanta, Greenville, Savannah). Additionally, the Admirals will be making their first trip to Iowa for a three-game series against the Heartlanders.

With the additions of the Tahoe Lake Monsters and Bloomington Bison to the ECHL, the Wheeling Nailers will be transitioning from the Central to the North Division.

A full promotional schedule for home games will be released at a later date and time.

Norfolk Admirals 2024-25 Schedule

Home – BOLD || Away – ITALIC

–Note: Dates are subject to change​​–

October 2024 (3 Home, 2 Away):

Friday, October 18 – vs. Adirondack Thunder

Saturday, October 19 – vs. Adirondack Thunder

Friday, October 25 – at Maine Mariners

Saturday, October 25 – at Maine Mariners

Wednesday, October 30 – vs. Worcester Railers

November 2024 (8 Home, 5 Away):

Friday, November 1 – vs. Worcester Railers

Sunday, November 3 – vs. Worcester Railers

Wednesday, November 6 – at Reading Royals

Friday, November 8 – at Adirondack Thunder

Saturday, November 9 – at Adirondack Thunder

Sunday, November 10 – at Worcester Railers

Friday, November 15 – vs. Toledo Walleye

Saturday, November 16 – vs. Toledo Walleye

Wednesday, November 20 – vs. Reading Royals

Friday, November 22 – at Reading Royals

Wednesday, November 27- vs Maine Mariners

Friday, November 29- vs Maine Mariners

Saturday, November 30- vs Maine Mariners

December 2024 (6 Home, 6 Away):

Friday, December 6 – at Adirondack Thunder

Sunday, December 8 – at Worcester Railers

Friday, December 13 – vs. Cincinnati Cyclones

Saturday, December 14 – vs. Cincinnati Cyclones

Sunday, December 15 – vs. Cincinnati Cyclones

Friday, December 20 – vs. Trois-Rivières Lions

Saturday, December 21 – vs. Trois-Rivières Lions

Sunday, December 22 – vs. Trois-Rivières Lions

Friday, December 27 – at Savannah Ghost Pirates

Saturday, December 28 – at Atlanta Gladiators

Sunday, December 29 – at Atlanta Gladiators

Tuesday, December 31 – at Greenville Swamp Rabbits

January 2025 (6 Home, Away):

Friday, January 3 – vs. Wheeling Nailers

Saturday, January 4 – vs. Wheeling Nailers

Saturday, January 11 – at Maine Mariners

Sunday, January 12 – at Maine Mariners

Friday, January 17 – vs. Trois-Rivières Lions

Saturday, January 18 – vs. Trois-Rivières Lions

Sunday, January 19 – vs. Trois-Rivières Lions

January 21-23 – All Star Break

Friday, January 24 – at Trois-Rivières Lions

Saturday, January 25 – at Adirondack Thunder

Sunday, January 26 – at Adirondack Thunder

Wednesday, January 29 – at Adirondack Thunder

Friday, January 31 – vs. South Carolina Stingrays

February 2025 (5 Home, 4 Away)

Saturday, February 1 – vs. South Carolina Stingrays

Tuesday, February 4- at Reading Royals (Education Game)

Friday, February 7 – at Maine Mariners

Saturday, February 8 – at Maine Mariners

Saturday, February 15 – vs. Reading Royals

Friday, February 21 – vs. Maine Mariners

Saturday, February 22 – vs. Maine Mariners

Sunday, February 23 – vs. Maine Mariners

Friday, February 28 – at Trois-Rivières Lions

March 2025 (6 Home, 9 Away)

Saturday, March 1  – at Trois-Rivières Lions

Sunday, March 2  – at Trois-Rivières Lions

Wednesday, March 5 – vs Florida Everblades

Friday, March 7 – vs Florida Everblades

Saturday, March 8 – vs Florida Everblades

Tuesday, March 11  – at Maine Mariners (Education Game)

Thursday, March 13 – at Worcester Railers (Education Game)

Friday, March 14  – at Worcester Railers

Saturday, March 15  – at Worcester Railers

Friday, March 21  – at Reading Royals

Saturday, March 22  – at Reading Royals

Sunday, March 23  – at Reading Royals

Wednesday, March 26 – vs. Reading Royals

Friday, March 28 – vs. Savannah Ghost Pirates

Saturday, March 29 – vs. Savannah Ghost Pirates

April (3 Home, 3 Away)

Friday, April 4 – at Iowa Heartlanders

Saturday, April 5 – at Iowa Heartlanders

Sunday, April 6 – at Iowa Heartlanders

Wednesday, April 9 – vs. Reading Royals

Friday, April 11 – vs. South Carolina Stingrays

Saturday, April 12 – vs. South Carolina Stingrays

To inquire about ticket packages for the 2024-25 season, call 757.640.1212 or CLICK HERE.



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29 May 2024

What's in Season in Norfolk: Spring 2024

After some unsettled days of “is it winter or summer?” the weather in Norfolk has finally decided to declare itself springlike, which means warm-season farmers’ markets are in full swing. A recent visit to the Afterglow Summer Market (held each second and fourth Wednesday of the month in the Railyard District, part of the Railroad neighborhood) yielded some details on what’s perfectly in season right now.

Here’s your guide to what’s peaking at local farmers’ markets in late spring 2024.

From their Fields to Your Table

Cruciferous Crunch: Be on the lookout for crisp cauliflower, peppery arugula and vibrant kale. Each is loaded with vitamins and perfect for salads, stir-fries or roasting.

Hearty Greens and Roots: Grab some leafy collard greens and bok choi for steaming or braising. Don’t forget those vibrant loose beets – perfect for roasting, pickling or adding a splash of color to springy salads. Garlic scapes, the flowering tops of garlic plants, offer a milder garlicky flavor ideal for pestos or dipping sauces.

Spring Greens and Alliums: Tender baby spinach is a versatile green perfect for salads or quick sautés. Look for crisp green onions and stock up on pungent garlic for all your culinary creations.

Early Gems: Spot smaller, new potatoes perfect for roasting or boiling. Tender sugar snap peas add a delightful sweetness to salads and stir-fries.

Blooming Beauties

Norfolk’s farmers’ markets are bursting with color this spring. A stop by the Hidden Gem booth showed off a bounty of flowers from this Chesapeake-based vendor. Here’s a small sampling:

Classic Elegance: Nothing says spring like Peonies, and they offer the feel of luxury with their large, fragrant blooms at an affordable price.

Delicate Charm: Campanula, commonly known as bellflowers, come in various shades of blue and purple, adding a touch of elegance to bouquets or container gardens.

Wild and Wonderful: Embrace native wildflowers. They’re always a better choice than their invasive counterparts and are good for the ecology of the region. Look for cheery yellow Black-Eyed Susans and the graceful plumes of grey-leaf goldenrod. These low-maintenance beauties attract pollinators and add a touch of natural charm to your landscape. Or, buy them cut and display them in your home to bring a touch of the outdoors inside.

Fresh From the Seas

While they’re not exactly farmers’ market fare, it’s worth mentioning that we’re in that moderately short window of time when soft shell crabs become available. These delicate crustaceans are a local favorite, typically available from late spring to early summer. Enjoy them simply fried or get adventurous with stuffed soft-shell crab recipes.

Beyond The Market

There’s much more becoming available over the next few weeks, so keep an eye out for asparagus, radishes, lettuces and fresh herbs like basil and mint as the season progresses.

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29 May 2024

Hope, Solutions On Full Display at Ryan Resilience Lab


As Luísa Black Ellis surveys Knitting Mill Creek on the Lafayette Branch of the Elizabeth River, she can’t help but recall a time not so long ago when the river was declared “dead.” 

“Thirty years ago, the Elizabeth River was so polluted that scientists would hold competitions to see who could pull out the most deformed fish from the river,” says Ellis, Resiliency Manager at the newly opened Ryan Resilience Lab at 4610 Colley Ave. 

Today, the river’s improved health stands as testament to the efforts of the community, which along with some encouragement from the Elizabeth River Project (ERP), has adopted more sustainable building practices along its banks. 

“Now we face the new threat of sea level rise,” Ellis says. “That’s why we built the Ryan Resilience Lab – to build a grass roots environmental resilience for the river and for the people who live on it.” 

Situated off Colley between 45th and 46th streets, the Ryan Resilience Lab (RRL) serves as the ERP’s latest stunning visual showcase for these practices, and it’s hosting a grand opening Saturday, June 1, 2024 from 11 a.m. to 4 p.m. The public is invited to join the festivities and to learn about the lab’s efforts to combat the inevitable effects of climate change on our region. 

There will be a brief grand opening ceremony at 11:30 a.m, and there will be a kids’ scavenger hunt, electric boat rides, tours, free bike rides and kayak ecotours for visitors to partake in. Earlier in the day is the Clean the Bay Day Cleanup from 9 a.m. to 10:30 a.m. Learn more here.

Green Systems 

The first thing a visitor to the RRL sees is a sleek exterior fronting Colley Ave. A stone’s throw from Old Dominion University and Chartway Arena, the 6,500 square foot lab isn’t just about making visual impressions: there’s also substance to its design. The closer you look, the more impressive the structure becomes.  

Built with green systems designed to withstand elements that will eventually destroy the structures around it, the lab uses off-the-shelf solutions that are within reach of the average homeowner, builder or developer. Decked out with solar panels, gardens that absorb rain, adaptable floodproofing, floating storage buildings and living roofs, the lab is meant to inspire homeowners who are concerned about the near future, but aren’t sure where to begin. 

Case in point: Ellis leads a tour to the second floor of the lab on the river side, where a lush garden grows atop a flat roof. Planted with native vegetation with shallow roots, this “living garden” serves multiple purposes, she says. 

“It passively insulates the building and cools or heats it as needed while reducing our need to burn fossil fuels,” she says. “It also reduces our heat island effect where cities have a lot of paved surfaces and cement that act like mirrors, doubling and redoubling the ambient heat of that area.” 

Ellis adds that heat islands are often found in historically black, brown and working class neighborhoods, which is why affordability of designs like living gardens is crucial to their eventual adoption.  

“The bulk of these systems we can help you design, install and cost-share,” Ellis says. “This is a really simple off-the-shelf system that anyone can install.” 

Part of the RRL’s mission is to persuade builders and developers to see that green systems are not only good for the earth and the community, but can also serve as cost-saving measures during construction. 

A Living Shoreline 

Contrasting the hopeful energy around the lab is the stark reality that sea level rise is projected to overtake the facility within 30 to 50 years. In fact, this is why the ERP chose the former American Legion building in the first place: to show visitors in real-time that the land they’re standing on will one day no longer exist. 

The lab’s living shoreline is evidence that progressive adaptation may be a better approach than a protracted fight against the inevitable. Ryan Resilience Lab’s floating structures and deep wetlands are designed to inspire homeowners to consider a not-so-distant future when they may no longer be able to occupy their homes. Built with recyclable elements, the lab is designed to be dismantled and its materials reused elsewhere when that day comes. 

“We built it that way on purpose hoping people will see that and replicate it and start planning for the future with their wetlands,” Ellis says. 

What may sound like a dystopian outlook for the Ryan Resilience Lab is actually a hopeful one, Ellis suggests. 

“People no longer say the river is dead,” she says. “They just ask what they can do to help. We’ve made incredible progress healing the river, but we still have a long way to go.” 

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23 May 2024

June 2024 Pride Events in Norfolk

Norfolk is bursting with pride all June, from lively kick-off fests to the city’s signature boat parade. Support the LGBTQ+ community while having a blast at any of these events.

June 1

NEON Rainbow Market (Noon-4 p.m.): Celebrate Pride and Juneteenth with unique vendors showcasing art, fashion, and crafts in the trendy NEON District (The Plot, 776 Granby St, Norfolk, VA).

  • Pride Kick Off Pop-Up Event at Aries Apothecary (Noon to 6 p.m.): Support local businesses and artists at this special Pride kick-off event featuring vendors and sales (Aries Apothecary, LLC, 3822 Granby st, Norfolk, VA).
  • Pride Kick-Off at MJ’s Tavern (10 a.m.): Enjoy live music, drag shows, fun games, food, and festivities to kick off Pride Month at MJ’s Tavern (4019 Granby Street, Norfolk, VA).

June 6

Pride Night: Celebrate Pride at the Chrysler Museum from 6-9 p.m. The Chrysler Museum of Art is kicking off Pride Month with Hampton Roads Pride! Step right up and prepare to be amazed by a Rainbow Circus full of live performances, aerialists, carnival games, music, dancing, and art. Grab your best top hat or tutu and run away to the Museum for the greatest PRIDE on Earth! Free admission. Experience the collection after-hours on the first Thursday of each month, from 6–9 p.m. In addition to the galleries, the Museum Shop and Zinnia Café are open. Cash bar and live music. New themes each month. (1 Memorial Place, Norfolk).

June 7

  • Hopes & Dreams Pride Night at Smartmouth Brewing Company (6-11 p.m.): Enjoy drag performances by Jasleane Jade, Naomi Black and Maria Rose, a live DJ, and a special Pride-themed beer release, “Hopes & Dreams Hazy DIPA,” with proceeds benefiting the LGBT Life Center (Smartmouth Brewing Company Norfolk HQ, 1309 Raleigh Avenue, Norfolk, VA).
  • New Moon Pride Market at Selden Market (7-10 p.m.): Feel the magic of the night at this market celebrating Pride with local vendors, tarot readings, psychic and astrology readings, workshops and more at Selden Market (208 E Main St, Norfolk, VA).

June 8

Pawsnickety Pets Pride Pet Parade & Block Pawty (8:30 p.m.-10:30 a.m.): Dress up your furry friend in their most fabulous attire and join the fun at Pawsnickety Pets’ pet parade featuring a costume contest, vendors, raffles and free mini dog cupcakes (Pawsnickety Pets, 957A W. 21st Street, Norfolk, VA).

June 12

  • Tides Baseball: Celebrate Pride Night at Harbor Park as the Tides take on the Memphis Redbirds. It’s also Wine Down Wednesday. 6:35 p.m. (150 Park Ave., Norfolk)

June 15

Pride Night at the Virginia Zoo (5-8 p.m.): Celebrate Pride with a night filled with love, drag queens, your favorite animals like lions and tigers, a mini market with local vendors and educational resources from LGBTQ+ organizations at the Virginia Zoo (3500 Granby St, Norfolk, VA).

June 16

  • Pride in Chelsea: details TBA

June 17

Ghent Pride (5:30- 9:30 p.m.): Don’t miss this inclusive community event presented by the Ghent Business Association featuring food trucks, drinks, entertainment, a “Lock of Love” display where you can write a message for $8, and a chance to celebrate Pride in the heart of Ghent (The Palace Shops and Station, Ghent).

June 19

  • Pride Speakeasy: At Gershwin’s piano bar and restaurant, 332 Granby St. Details TBA.

June 21

  • The Generosity Network’s LGBTQ Happy Hour / LGBT Life Center Fundraiser (5-7 p.m.): Enjoy a fun happy hour with free drinks and giveaways while supporting the LGBT Life Center at Cogans Pizza North (4311 Colley Avenue, Norfolk, VA).
  • Camp Pride Block Party (7 p.m.): Dance the night away at this 18+ block party featuring top DJs, Anelz, DJ Kenny Cruz, and DJ Coop (location to be announced).

June 22

Hampton Roads PrideFest Boat Parade (Noon-2 p.m.): Kick off the PrideFest weekend with the vibrant and historic Boat Parade along the Elizabeth River, departing from Town Point Park (100 E Virginian St, Norfolk, VA). The parade is a part of the overall Hampton Roads PrideFest, being held across several cities in the region this weekend.

  • Norfolk Official Pride Bar Crawl (4-11 p.m.): Join the official Pride bar crawl and celebrate with friends at participating locations throughout Norfolk (locations to be announced).

June 27

Naro Minded: BOUND (1996) at Naro Cinema (7 p.m.): Enjoy a free screening of the classic lesbian neo-noir film “BOUND” in celebration of Pride Month at Naro Cinema (1507 Colley Ave, Norfolk, VA).

June 29

  • Sapphic Pride: 7 p.m. at 37th and Zen, 1083 37th St.

All Month

Whether you’re here during June when a lineup of event take center stage or you’re exploring Norfolk any time of the year and want to show support, we’ve got the Pride gear to add some vibrancy and inclusion to your wardrobe.

Shop online, stop by our Mermaid Market at 232 E. Main St., Norfolk, or come to our Mobile Visitors Center during PrideFest to stock up on rainbow swag representing Norfolk as a city for all.

This is just a taste of the many exciting events happening in Norfolk for Pride Month. You can find up-to-date information on many events on the official Hampton Roads Pride website and social media pages for the latest updates and details.

Are you hosting a Pride event we missed? We’d love to know about it. Email us here to have it included!

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22 May 2024

June 2024 Events Guide

Look, June is so packed with events in Norfolk, VA that we couldn’t possibly fit them all here or else you’d be scrolling for days! Just visit our events calendar and you’ll see there’s a world-class event happening nearly every single day. With that said, here are the top June events from Tides games to Pridefest to Juneteenth to Father’s Day and more.

Tides Baseball Games

Harbor Park

Sat., Jun 1 vs. Gwinnett
6:35 pm EDT

Sun., Jun 2 vs. Gwinnett
1:05 pm EDT

Tue., Jun 11 vs. Memphis
6:35 pm EDT
Bark In The Park

Wed., Jun 12 vs. Memphis
6:35 pm EDT
Pride Night

Thu., Jun 13 vs. Memphis
12:05 pm EDT

Fri., Jun 14 vs. Memphis
6:35 pm EDT

Sat., Jun 15 vs. Memphis
6:35 pm EDT

Sun., Jun 16 vs. Memphis
1:05 pm EDT
Fathers Day Catch On The Field

Tue., Jun 25 vs. Charlotte
6:35 pm EDT

Wed., Jun 26 vs. Charlotte
6:35 pm EDT

Thu., Jun 27 vs. Charlotte
12:05 pm EDT

Fri., Jun 28 vs. Charlotte
6:35 pm EDT
Negro League Tribute Night

Sat., Jun 29 vs. Charlotte
6:35 pm EDT

Sun., Jun 30 vs. Charlotte
1:05 pm EDT

Big Bands On the bay

Ocean View Beach Park

Enjoy living music in Ocean View throughout the summer! Welcome the stars every Sunday night from 7–9 p.m. Guests are invited down to the Gazebo at Ocean View Beach Park for live Big Band music and dancing. Get up and dance or sit back and relax as you enjoy these incredible summer events! See the full summer lineup here.

Aoife O’Donovan: Light in the Eastern Sky

June 1, 2024
Perry Pavilion

A day of music and workshops curated by Aoife O’Donovan set for Saturday, June 1, 2024 at the Perry Pavilion and surrounding venues downtown. Events include several concerts, a music workshop, a street market and a headlining show at 6:30 p.m.

The day’s events include: Purchase tickets here.

Norfolk Street Food Festival

June 1-2, 2024
Waterside District

This spectacular weekend-long event will feature the Norfolk area’s most unique & best-tasting restaurants and food trucks with all food items priced at $5 and under. This will allow you to sample a wide range of flavors and options from over 20+ vendors. Come for the food, and stay for the fun as there will be tons of live entertainment, family-friendly activities, contests, activations, and more.

Norfolk Harborfest

June 7-9, 2024
Town Point Park, Downtown Norfolk Waterfront

@coopdeville_, Instagram

America’s largest, longest-running, free maritime festival, the iconic Norfolk Harborfest enters its 47th year. For three memorable days along the Downtown Norfolk Waterfront, Harborfest celebrates all of the elements that make Norfolk and Hampton Roads a historic maritime and naval community. On both land and sea, thrilling activities and live music take center stage, including the annual Parade of Sail featuring international tall ships, one of the largest fireworks shows on the East Coast, a mesmerizing drone show, interactive family games and activities, Navy exhibits and demonstrations, artisan foods and beverages, national and regional live entertainment and much more.

Juneteenth in the Park

June 15, 2024
Town Point Park

Join in the fun of Juneteenth this year! This free event is open to the public and designed to promote and support as we celebrate Juneteenth!

Sunsets on the River

June 13 and 27, 2024
Hermitage Museum & Gardens

Norfolk’s favorite riverside concert series returns for its 14th summer with fun for the whole family! Relax on the shoreline and enjoy live music from across the musical spectrum. This year’s line up includes: Interactive Top 40, Country/Americana, R&B, Swing, Psychedelic Rock, Rockabilly and more. See full summer schedule.

Fins on the Fantail

June 15, 2024

Calling all Parrot Heads! Join us on the Battleship as we pay tribute the one and only, Jimmy Buffett, with live music by the Tiki Bar. Enjoy themed drinks, tasty bites, games and more provided by Sail Nauticus.  Doors open at 5 p.m., band goes on at 5:30p.m.. Must be ages 21+ to attend, ID will be verified upon arrival.

Celebrate Father’s Day

June 16, 2024
Norfolk, VA

Show Dad a fun time with Father’s Day fun throughout the city! Spend time with Dad at a beach, brewery or baseball game. Journey on a historic cruise, hit the golf course, catch a fish, or kayak along the Lafayette River. We’ve got the perfect ideas for a day with Dad.

Annual OV Mermaid Fest

June 22, 2024
Ocean View Beach Park

Swim & run your way to Ocean View! With competitions and awards celebrating the youngest, oldest and fastest swimmers.

Starting at 1 p.m., tantalize your taste buds with Coastal Virginia’s finest brews. The Coastal Virginia Brew Alliance (CVBA) presents 25-30 local breweries, featuring up to 60 locally brewed beers on tap.

But that’s not all. The OV Mermaid fest will be lined with food trucks and vendors of all kinds. Discover a treasure trove of mermaid-themed delights with mermaid tailfins, coconuts, jewelry, art and more.


June 22, 2024
Town Point Park

This much-anticipated annual event celebrates the diversity of the LGBTQ+ community and allies, providing the opportunity to unify through celebrations of inclusion and equality. Norfolk has the distinct honor of being the location for the only Pride Boat Parade in the country! The parade celebrates our connections with the 300-year-old maritime history of our port cities. Town Point Park, nestled along the riverbanks of the Elizabeth River, provides a unique setting for boaters to be part of this event. 

aJR: The Maybe Man Tour

June 23, 2024
Scope Arena

AJR – Photo by Jeremiah Kane, courtesy SevenVenues

Rescheduled from April: AJR’s 49-date Live Nation promoted tour has sold over 400,000 tickets to date and continues through the spring and summer with stops at several legendary venues, including Austin’s Moody Center, Los Angeles’ Kia Forum, Nashville’s Bridgestone Arena, and two nights at AJR’s hometown arena, Madison Square Garden. Full routing is available below.

See even more events here!

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19 May 2024

VisitNorfolk’s Champion of Hospitality Awards for National Travel and Tourism Week 2024

May 19-25, 2024 is National Travel and Tourism Week (NTTW), an annual tradition to celebrate the U.S. travel community and tourism’s essential role in stimulating economic growth, cultivating vibrant communities, creating quality job opportunities, inspiring new businesses and elevating the quality of life for Americans every day. 

Tourism is essential to our region and plays an integral role in Norfolk’s economy. As the third largest economic driver for our city, the travel and tourism industry mobilized a $149.7 million impact in fiscal year 2023. With over 7,000 jobs in the tourism and hospitality sector, our industry attracts a multitude of talents and provides significant economic benefits to both local businesses and Norfolk residents. 

To celebrate tourism in our city and to shine a light on the individuals and teams who make Norfolk such a welcoming city to experience, VisitNorfolk established in 2002 the Champion of Hospitality Awards. In March and April, we invited anyone who has had a positive hospitality experience in Norfolk to nominate an individual or an entire team for the Champion of Hospitality Awards. We are excited to share the winners of this year’s awards and encourage you to visit these Champions of Hospitality in person during your next Norfolk experience. 

Peter G. Decker, Jr. Hospitality Associate of the Year

Mary Buting
Laundry Attendant
DoubleTree By Hilton Hotel Norfolk Airport

Since 1994, Mary Buting has remained a steadfast and loyal employee in the laundry department of the DoubleTree by Hilton Hotel Norfolk Airport. She’s fluffed and folded laundry for guests, working extra hours and going above and beyond during Covid to clean rooms and spot check the lobby, something she said she’d never done before.

“That was a hard job,” she says. “I did a little bit of everything.”

This can-do attitude has led coworkers to say, “She is so well liked and kind to everyone that she exudes the spirit of hospitality all the way and never looks for recognition.”

“I try to give them everything they need,” she says about DoubleTree guests.

With this award, Mary is getting the recognition she deserves for three decades of service to Norfolk’s visitors.

– Nominated by Mary Elizabeth Collins, DoubleTree Norfolk

Champion of Hospitality Winners

Rob Asbury 
Todd Jurich Bistro

Always friendly and providing top-notch service, Rob Asbury mans the bar at Todd Jurich Bistro with the air of a true professional. Whether he’s serving our city’s visitors, locals or the eatery’s celebrity clientele, Rob is ready to deliver excellent service every time.

– Nominated by Bruce Watts

Scott & Corrie Bateman
COVA Brewing Company

COVA’s commitment to quality brews, community growth and sustainability is no accident. It’s a collective effort of the team led by Scott and Corie Bateman. These two work tirelessly, serving on community boards including the Ocean View Business Association, to make this city one that will be around for future generations to live and thrive in.

– Nominated by Scott Bateman, COVA Brewing Co.

John Carter
Sales and Catering Coordinator
HIlton the Main

As our first-ever Rookie of the Year, John already has the chops of a seasoned pro. He handles everything thrown his way while serving as a welcoming face for guests at the Main. His teammates say they’re very lucky to have him around and look forward to seeing what he does in the future.

– Nominated by Jessica Clingenpeel, The Main Norfolk

Drazey Carvajal
Front Desk Supervisor
DOubleTree Norfolk Airport

Despite having no prior hospitality experience, Drazey impressed the higher-ups at Doubletree enough to land a part-time position at the hotel. Over the past two years, he has gone above and beyond, becoming a supervisor and an indispensable member of his team. He’s called the “driving force” for the front desk team and someone who puts others before himself. He’s noted for being compassionate and helping out without batting an eye.

– Nominated by Crystal Dickey, DoubleTree Norfolk

Chrysler Museum Visitor Services Team

Walk into the Chrysler Museum and it’s likely the door will be opened for you by one of these friendly ambassadors for the arts. During the recent Paul McCartney photo exhibition, the team greeted more than 60,000 visitors with knowledge and friendliness while ensuring guest safety. They also work weddings, festivals and have been nationally recognized for the level of service they provide.

– Nominated by Ashley Grove Mars, Chrysler Museum

Hannah Coats
General Manager and Brew Master

For 10 years, Hannah has worked her way up through the Hilton ranks, now serving as GM and brewmaster at Grain. Her coworkers note that she makes every day look easy and fun, thanks to her positive attitude and friendly demeanor. She creates a positive atmosphere for both staff and guests – and it shows in her employee retention and guest satisfaction stats.

– Nominated by Jessica Clingenpeel, The Main Norfolk

Best Tourist Shuttle

F.R.E.D. may not be a person, but this electric vehicle packs a lot of personality. Offering near-daily rides (for free!) throughout the Downtown Norfolk corridor, this battery-operated, eight-seat people mover is an extension of the Downtown Public Service Ambassador program and, well, it’s a certified hit with visitors.

– Nominated by Sam Black, Downtown Norfolk

Rebecca Kelley
Pastry Chef
The Stockpot Norfolk

The tasty treats on display at the Stockpot in Selden Market are carefully crafted by pastry chef Rebecca Kelley, who turns out custom cakes, themed deserts, cookies and house bread with ease every day. She pulls double duty as the Stockpot’s social media coordinator and is always happy to lend a helping hand by serving as the restaurant’s Manager On Duty multiple times a week. She’s a terrific asset for Downtown Norfolk.

– Nominated by Amber Kostka, The Stockpot Norfolk

Sydney Meers
Syd’s Fish Pig Cafe

Chef Syd Meers personifies “above and beyond” with the service he provides at Syd’s Fish Pig Cafe. From staying open late to cook for late-night VIPs to entertaining guests with colorful chitchat, Syd has often opened his doors on days off to provide private dining for conference officials. An award-winning chef, Meers is also an artist in his own right.

– Nominated by Wayne Callis, VisitNorfolk

Chris Perry
Assistant General Manager
Courtyard by Marriott Downtown Norfolk

Noted for being the “epitome of hospitality,” Chris Perry serves as the heart of the downtown Marriott. He always has a smile on his face and “bends over backwards” to help guests feel welcome. Also nominated to be the moderator/group expert on the Marriott Employee Forum on Facebook, Chris does his best to greet every guest who steps into the Marriott.

– Nominated by Brent Cosgrove, Marriott Downtown Norfolk

Carla Plummer
City of Norfolk Parking

Known for her charming personality and friendly demeanor, Plummer has helped keep city parking in check for years, going above and beyond during the recent MEAC Tournament. She bagged meters and spent three hours assisting by keeping spaces open during the opening night reception. Carla retires in October and is well deserving of this honor.

– Nominated by Jennifer Lopez, Visit Norfolk

Mary Ryder
Allied Universal Security Services

At a recent show, Mary assisted a young man who was experiencing sensory/anxiety issues. She checked on him and offered to reseat him on a lower level where he could – and did – enjoy the rest of the show. Mary went out of her way to ensure the entire family had an enjoyable evening, going far above and beyond her job description.

– Nominated by James Ball, VisitNorfolk

Lori Santiago
Bell Person
The Main

Walk in to the Main and it’s likely you’ll see the warm smile of Lori Santiago greeting you. She’s always dressed for the occasion, wearing themed outfits to welcome guests daily. It’s hard to beat the first impression Lori offers to guests walking into the Main, whether it’s for the first time or their hundredth time.

– Nominated by Stacy Lisborg, The Main Norfolk

Dave Walker
Operations Supervisor
Downtown Norfolk Council

For 25 years, Dave Walker has served as a dedicated member of the Ambassador team for the Downtown Norfolk Council. He’s always ready to lend a helping hand and direct visitors to where they want to go. He also keeps the streetscape clean and safe while dropping serious knowledge about Downtown for locals and visitors alike.  

– Nominated by Sam Black, Downtown Norfolk

Vinson M Wilson
Supreme Allied Commander Transformation

For 20 years, Vinson has served ACT/NATO in the Protocol Office. He supported all NATO Events for General Philippe Lavigne, SACT Commander and has been an inspiration to his colleagues and team. Vinson is a previous Hospitality Champion, having won in 2009.

– Nominated by NATO Protocol Staf

Meet our 2023 winners here.

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16 May 2024

Recently Opened in Norfolk

Because Norfolk is always evolving and changing, we want to make sure you don’t miss out on all the new talented chefs, baristas, boutique owners or pitmasters opening up businesses. Whether it’s trying an innovative dish or buying a new outfit, we’re always excited to try out the new locally-owned shops and restaurants. Although we cannot list every new entity that joins Norfolk’s culture, we encourage you to follow along with us on social media for more openings and happenings within the city!

Would you like your new business featured here? Email us with details.

May 2024

Potted: Houseplant Cafe

Part cafe, part plant shop, Potted combines two great things under one roof: brewed tea and houseplants. Situated inside Selden Market at 208 E. Main St., Potted is open daily from 11 a.m. to 6 p.m. except on Tuesdays, when it’s closed. The staff crafts milk, boba and more traditional teas, and also sells loose leaf tea for home brewing. The opposite wall features a small, but carefully curated selection of houseplants. Follow them on Instagram.

508 CraftHouse

Visitors to the Chelsea District have been eagerly awaiting the grand opening of 508 Crafthouse, which happened in late April. With dishes ranging from Oysters Rockefeller and jerked quail to bourbon lamb chops and scallop gnochi, the menu looks extremely promising, as does the weekly Sunday brunch. Located at 508 Orapax St., 508 Crafthouse is open Tuesday through Saturday 3 p.m. to 11 p.m. and Sunday 11 a.m. to 3 p.m. Follow them on Instagram.

District Taco

Fans of this D.C.-based regional taco chain, rejoice! Found at 2700 Hampton Blvd. across from the up-and-coming Railyard project, this taco joint features the familiar setup found at places like Chipotle, Qdoba and Moe’s, but boasts that its dishes are made fresh from scratch daily. See the menu here.

Slow and Steady Bike Goods

Slow and Steady Bike Goods, located at 2406 Colley Ave. in a former bike shop space, is the newcomer to the city’s burgeoning cycling scene. Owners Joey and Fred have set out to create a “unique and inclusive space that serves as a hub for bike enthusiasts and the community. The shop offers everything from basic flat repairs to premium tune-ups with a quick turnaround. They also host several monthly rides, the details of which are posted at their shop and on social media. Follow them on Instagram.

Virginia ABC (RailYard Branch)

One final Railyard update to add this month: Virginia Alcoholic Beverage Control has added a new, clean-as-a-whistle location to load up on libations at 1225 W. 25th St. The new Store expands the choices for those living in Ghent, West Ghent, Chelsea and the ODU neighborhoods. It celebrated its grand opening April 15.

April 2024

Amale Tre Focacceria
Amale Tre Focacceria

Amale Tre Focacceria

Operated by husband and wife partner Gabriele and Nicole Pianezze, Amale Tre Focacceria crafts mouthwatering foccacias, imported meats and cheeses and other Italian delights in Selden Market. Also serving homemade breads, pasts, sauces, deserts and more. You may know the pair from their popular La Cucina di Sophia food truck. A steady stream of customers at their kiosk tells you everything you need to know about the quality of their offerings.

Norfolk Naval Station Bus Tour

From $20. Get on board for an approximately 50 minute to one hour guided bus tour of Naval Station Norfolk – the world’s largest Naval installation. Our tour guide will provide a “Navy-approved” tour that includes the homes of the 1907 Jamestown Exposition, Chambers Field Air Station, the ships of the fleet and much more.

Learn More and Book Now

Crave Bakery & Coffee Bar

Camille Sheppard-Parrish has recently moved Crave Bakery from its Edinburgh location to the former Chocollage space at Boush and College in the Historic Freemason District. The bakery serves up coffee, pastries, ice cream and a full breakfast and lunch menu including croissants, toasts, waffles and more. 200 College Place.  

Ordinaire, Norfolk
Ordinaire, Norfolk


Located in the original Brothers restaurant space at 200 E. Plume St. in Downtown Norfolk, Ordinaire serves up a coastal Gullah-inspired menu. Appetizers include fried pickled okra, fried deviled eggs, boiled peanuts and entrees such as shrimp and grits, lamb chops, chicken and collar alfredo and more. 

Studio Kuumba
Studio Kuumba

Studio Kuumba

This pop-up art studio and workspace began as a pop-up in Selden Market at 208 E. Main St. The concept is simple: pop in any time for simple free flow crafting like creating bookmarks, bracelets, paintings and more. Sign up for guided workshops by yourself or with a group. Also carries local art, jewelry and more, created by the owner and other talented artists. Now, the store is expanding to a full-fledged storefront. 

Biscuit Belly

Slated to open mid-March in the ambitious Railyard at Lambert’s Point project is regional chain Biscuit Belly at 2401 Hampton Blvd. The eatery promises a “brunch menu filled with bold new twists on Southern favorites.”

StretchLab Norfolk


Also found in the Railyard at Lambert’s Point, StretchLab offers “one-on-one, customized assisted stretching sessions. The stretches are given on our custom designed benches by Flexologists who will customize your stretch to your needs and talk you through your stretches.” Find it at 1225 W. 25th St. 

Chicken Salad Chick

Load up on a dozen different types of chicken salad, served on bread, croissants or lettuce at this new Railyard entry. Find it at 1200 W. 26th St. 

Cooking with Greens

Slated to open in early April 2024, Cooking with Greens is operated by Derak and Anita Green (get it?). What began as a Facebook page has transformed into a storefront in Selden Market where the Greens will sell seasonings, cookbooks, kitchenware and more. 208 E. Main St.  

PJay’s Kitchen

Veteran-owned Granby Street spot for shrimp po’boys, slow-braised oxtail sandwiches, tacos and more. 323 Granby St. 


The New F.R.E.D.

If you’ve spent any time downtown, you’ve likely seen F.R.E.D. roaming the streets, offering Free Rides Every Day to visitors. Downtown Norfolk recently unveiled a new, fancified battery-operated F.R.E.D. unit that transports up to 8 passengers with confort. Call 757-478-7233 to hitch a ride. 

Victory Rover

Victory Rover

Like F.R.E.D., Victory Rover has been a downtown staple for many years, but it’s worth noting that March 2024 marked the return of these ever-popular naval base harbor cruises at the Waterside. As things heat up, don’t miss the chance to see Mermaid City from a different vantage point – aboard a 149-passenger ship. 

@CityofNorfolkVA LOVEwork sign at ORF.
@CityofNorfolkVA LOVEwork sign at ORF.

LoveWork AR Installation

As part of its “Love is in the Air” campaign, Norfolk International Airport recently unveiled its newest LOVEwork sign that features an Augmented Reality (AR) experience for those who scan the QR code. Check it out; it’s pretty neat!

Want to tell us about new business openings? Email us your tips

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13 May 2024

Unique Wedding Venues in Norfolk

Your wedding venue is one of the most important choices you can make for your big day. After all, in years to come your guest may not remember your exact vows, who was there or what type of flowers you carried, but they will certainly remember where your wedding celebration took place. 

One key to success? Choosing a venue that’s as unique as your relationship. Your love doesn’t fit into a category, and neither do these destinations. No matter what you love, there’s a location to help you celebrate that and incorporate your interests into the occasion for your Norfolk, Virginia wedding. 

Locales for Lovers of …

Animals: Virginia Zoo

Take your love on the wild side by hosting your wedding at the Zoo. Take advantage of the venue’s grand event pavilion, featuring all the amenities of indoors but with a fresh perspective. To take your event to the next level, you can add on an animal encounter or train tickets, allowing guests to participate in a one-of-a-kind experience while celebrating your love.

Wedding at Virginia Zoo. @emilyweddings Instagram

Architecture: NEON House

This two-story event rental space in Norfolk’s NEON District blends historic industrial chic appeal with modern design elements. With multiple space options to hold your ceremony, cocktail hour and reception, the possibilities are endless to bring your vision to life. The studio features brick walls, exposed beans and an 18-foot glass garage door while the gallery boasts floor-to-ceiling brick walls, charming architectural details and tons of stunning natural light. 

Neon House wedding. Photo by @the.neon.house Instagram 

Art: Chrysler Museum of Art

For a couple immersed in the wonderful world of art, a wedding at the Chrysler Museum is a must. Whether you desire a small and understated affair or a large and extravagant reception, there is a space for you. Consider Huber Court, the museum’s magnificent atrium and their most impressive event space. Alternatively, the Perry Glass Studio provides an unforgettable experience for a seated dinner or stand-up reception, complemented by a live glass demonstration. 

@hhpva Instagram 

Barry Art Museum

Exchange vows under the stunning Dale Chihuly glass chandelier that hangs from the museum’s 40-foot ceiling. This ODU museum is available for night weddings. The first floor Sculpture Court seats 80, while the first and second floor encompass four galleries that can host up to 150 standing. Opt for the terrace for an outdoors ceremony or reception when reserved in combination with the Sculpture Court. Bonus: the terrace offers a dance floor and tenting for your big event. 

A Slover Library Wedding. @everlyafterevents Instagram 

Books: Slover Library

For couples who love to get lost in a good book, we can’t think of a more suitable venue than Norfolk’s architectural marvel, the Slover Library. Not your typical library by any means, Slover is a spectacular destination innovatively designed to create a vital and dynamic resource for Norfolk’s residents and visitors. Slover offers an array of spaces to accommodate groups up to 250.

A wedding ceremony at Norfolk Botanical Garden. @heather_hughes_photography Instagram 

Flowers: Norfolk Botanical Garden

Have you always dreamed of getting married among gorgeous blooms, in a secret garden-style hideaway or in the presence of lush landscapes and natural beauty? A Norfolk Botanical Garden wedding is like no other, encompassing 175 breathtaking acres. The garden is the ideal setting for a dream wedding, with 13 serene outdoor locations to choose from. From an intimate party of 20 to an extravagant affair for up to 400 guests, the garden has everything needed to make your love blossom. 

Hermitage Museum and Gardens

Tucked along the waterfront of the Lafayette River, the Hermitage Museum & Gardens features 12 acres of gardens and grounds. This Arts & Crafts style estate is an extremely popular Norfolk wedding spot, thanks to the views of the river, the majesty of the building and the grandeur of the grounds. Host your ceremony in the Rose Garden, the historic (and romantic) interior or on the sprawling central lawn. The Hermitage is suitable for parties of up to 200. 

Food: Four Eleven York

This elegant, beautiful and unique bed and breakfast with one of Norfolk’s most esteemed restaurants on-site is the ideal venue to host a rehearsal dinner, wedding reception or all three. The restaurant can accommodate 28 guests for a rehearsal dinner they’ll never forget, and the outdoor courtyard can hold up to 24 guests seated or up to 50 for a gathering. Four Eleven York is a true Norfolk treasure and ideal for intimate weddings focused on a love for one another and an adoration for unmatched cuisine. 

History: Woman’s Club of Norfolk

Located in the historic Martin Mansion (a 10,000-square-foot, 21-room Georgian revival built in 1909), the Woman’s Club of Norfolk is a stately and historic venue for couples who can appreciate the finest details and simple elegance of yesteryear. Celebrate the night away as dignitaries, celebrities and many presidents once did during the golden age of the Roaring Twenties. Create an extraordinary memory for you and up to 100 guests that will be recounted for years to come. 

@rovercruises Instagram 

Nautical: City Cruises / American Rover

Yes, that’s correct. You can join together in matrimonial bliss aboard one of City Cruise Experience’s two ships. Choose from daytime, sunset or nighttime ceremonies and dance the night away just offshore as the lights of Norfolk twinkle, adding to the magic of the evening. City Cruises hosts ceremonies, receptions, rehearsal dinners and other wedding-week events to get your whole crew into the maritime spirit. Packages include multi-hour cruises with meals, cake cutting, champagne toasts, cocktails and service staff to make the most of your day. Likewise, the American Rover sailboat can accommodate up to 100 guests for a dual ceremony/reception, along with a full bar, catering and DJ services. 

Weddings That Take Center Stage

If your love is the stuff that great stories are made of, go ahead and make your day a production for everyone to see. These locales will provide all the theatrics (but none of the drama) needed to produce a truly show-stopping event. 

Attucks Theatre

The Attucks Theatre was built in 1919 as a mecca for entertainment and commerce in the heart of the city’s minority community, much like New York’s Harlem. In its heyday, it was even dubbed the Apollo of the South. Today, the Attucks’ ornate interior and storied history as being the oldest remaining theater in the country that was financed, designed, constructed and operated by African Americans make it an exceptional venue to start a journey together. For intimate settings, the Lower Banquet Room can accommodate receptions up to 190. For larger celebrations, the Upper Banquet Room can hold receptions up to 400. 

Chrysler Hall

Conveniently located on St. Paul’s Boulevard Downtown, Chrysler Hall has set the stage for some of Norfolk’s top performances and Broadway shows. Make your wedding the main event by taking advantage of the venue’s rich decor and glorious chandeliers. The main lobby and two-level grand hall can accommodate bistro tables and buffet serving tables, while the dress circle will hold up to 450 for standing cocktails and 250 for a seated dinner. 

Granby Theater

The historic Granby Theater has been renovated into a beautiful venue for private events, including weddings. Originally opened in 1916, Granby Theater still maintains its historic beauty with crystal chandeliers, tall ceilings, gold leaf trimmed walls, velvet curtained stage and more. Enjoy superior service along with the classical ambiance and unique characteristics the theater has to offer, making your event one-of-a-kind. 

Harrison Opera House

Start your marriage on a high note at Harrison Opera House, a premiere facility for elegant affairs. Dramatic towers frame the dynamic facade and enclose an elegant staircase to the grand foyer and balcony levels. A three-story grand lobby with cantilevered balcony lobby, floor-to-ceiling windows and grand chandeliers makes the perfect setting for a wedding that’s dramatic in all the right ways. The grand lobby on the second floor can accommodate up to 350 guests for cocktails, up to 225 for a seated dinner and up to 210 with a dance floor. 

@abbiewg Instagram 

Wells Theatre

Even when a wedding isn’t happening, there’s something about the Wells Theatre that’s timelessly romantic, an intimate glimpse into the gilded age of days gone by. The intricate design of this magnificent historical theater adds a touch of extravagance to events held here, particularly weddings. The handsomely appointed facility can host receptions up to 250 and banquets up to 75.

@valerie.demo Instagram

Venues With Brews

Love hanging out at Norfolk’s breweries? Who doesn’t? In fact, your guests would quite enjoy the laid-back, welcoming vibe at some of the city’s most beloved breweries, not to mention the never-ending supply of craft beers. Consider one of these venues to host your rehearsal dinner or wedding. 

Bold Mariner Brewing Company

You already love the vibe of Bold Mariner’s wraparound porches and laid-back leisure in Norfolk’s Ocean View neighborhood, so why not make it your venue? Reserve the second floor of this beautiful brewery (and the porch as well for an additional fee) and plan to bask in their wide open space with walls of windows and gorgeous hardwood floors. Take advantage of BAR-Q’s full catering menu, plus your favorite Bold Mariner beverages stocked to your delight. 

Elation Brewing

For lovers simply elated to tie the knot, Elation Brewing offers stunning architectural details as the backdrop of a perfect day. A completely exposed brick wall, plenty of windows offering bursts of natural light and nearly 90-foot bowstring trusses are just a few of the visual elements that couples can look forward to. Meanwhile, their stellar assortment of beers are sure to please the palate of each guest. 

Smartmouth Brewing Company

Another one of Norfolk’s OG breweries, Smartmouth is ready to host receptions in thea most wonderful way. Consider their climate-controlled tasting room for up to 50 guests or their warehouse space that can accommodate up to 160 people. Best of all, you’ll have dedicated beertenders, Smartmouth’s full selection of beers on tap, choice of streaming music station and the option to provide your own food or hire a caterer or food truck. 

The Veil Brewing Co.

Whatever it may be, “The Veil Made Me Do It.” This iconic neon sign of Norfolk’s top-notch brewery in the Railroad District is a favorite photo spot among wedding guests and couples, but there’s also way more reasons to consider The Veil as a place for vows. Their third floor private event space is a coveted location with a surprisingly grand view of the city. Holding up to 100 guests, it’s the perfect vibe away from all the hustle and bustle if you want to have your wedding in a brewery without feeling like you’re in a brewery. The Veil offers catering from their in-house restaurant and their event coordinator will help you iron out any and all details. 

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08 May 2024

Hunt, Gather, Repeat. 

Which is more fun when it comes to antiques shopping – the hunting or the gathering? With one of Norfolk’s newest players on the vintage shopping scene, you can accomplish both at the same time. 

Owned by local antiques dealer Michael Millard-Lowe, Hunt and Gather is a one-of-a-kind hot spot for treasure seekers situated in a spacious building off 21st Street in Norfolk’s Ghent neighborhood. The sprawling space features a carefully curated selection of vintage finds and handcrafted delights from local vendors and makers, offering a little bit of something for everyone. 

Store manager Emily Holt is one of 66 vendors across 79 booths selling everything from Mid-Century Modern home decor to antiques, vintage electronics, handcrafted jewelry, books and even some more contemporary finds dating back to the ‘80s and ‘90s. 

Holt’s booth, named Happy Pig Co. is a self-described “sweet little boutique filled with frivolous necessities.” Some of those necessities include eye-catching car air fresheners in a variety of scents and designs – from happy pigs to aliens and floral patterns. As with some of the other vendors, Holt also sells her wares on online platforms like Etsy.

An Upscale Flea Market

Running the shop, she says, is a dream come true. Quite a bit of hard work has gone into transforming Hunt and Gather into the hand-picked experience it is today. 

“Before, it was a bit overwhelming,” Holt says of the space that reopened under new ownership in February 2023. “Like a big palette of paint mixed together.” 

Now, themed booths allow each vendor to showcase their own personal aesthetic. One booth features hand-sewn aprons, pillows and bags, while another is occupied by popular local seller Hank’s Vintage. This mix of styles allows shoppers to travel back in time from the 19th Century to modern times, shopping on their own terms while they discover their next great find. 

”This is the thrifting experience for people who don’t want to go thrifting,” Holt says. “Some people find thrift stores to be too chaotic. Here, I can see the vendor’s aesthetic and I don’t have to think too hard about what I want.”

Holt grew up shopping with her Mom for antiques in Maryland and always dreamed of being a part of a curated experience like Hunt and Gather. 

“I wanted this store to be like that. People could come in and see everything at every price point and aesthetic.” 

Currently, Hunt and Gather has a wait list for vendors, but has recently added a new space for micro businesses who don’t need a full booth but want to share their collection with the broad audience. 

With several vendors refreshing their items daily, Holt says, “There’s no other store like this in Norfolk. We tried to make sure we had a lighter, more airy space for the locals here.” 

As for the future of Hunt and Gather, Holt says it’s bright. 

“It’s a river right now, but eventually, it’ll become the Grand Canyon.” 

Hunt and Gather is located at 110 W. 21st St. and is open from 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. Monday through Saturday and noon to 5 p.m. on Sunday. Follow them on Instagram

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08 May 2024

Five-Day Itinerary to Celebrate Sail 250

What: Sail250® Virginia

 When: June 19-22, 2026

2026 marks the 250th anniversary of our nation’s birth in 1776- The United States of America’s Semi quincentennial.  International tall ships and military vessels will sail into the port of Virginia as part of Sail2025® America.  4,000 officers, cadets, and crews of more than 55 ships from 20 nations will engage in events along Virginia’s waterfront.

Thursday – Day One – Coastal Virginia – June 18, 2026

Arrive in Coastal Virginia and check into your hotel.

Start the morning at The MacArthur Memorial. The memorial museum and research center is dedicated to preserving and presenting the story of the life of General of the Army Douglas MacArthur. The Memorial also pays tribute to the millions of men and women who served with General MacArthur in World War I, World War II and the Korean War. A visit to the Memorial will allow you to explore the life of one of America’s greatest and most complex leaders.

Friday – Day Two- Virginia Beach, Virginia

Start the day with a visit to one of the smallest National Parks in the country. Here visit the First Landing Cross– marking the spot where the first permanent English settlers landed on April 26, 1607, before heading to Jamestown. The crew of 104 men and boys erected a wooden cross to mark their arrival. A granite cross was erected in 1935. Also located on this site is the Battle of the Capes Monument– honoring the Battle of the Chesapeake Bay between the French and British- one of the most significant battles, that helped clear the path for the creation of the United States. There is also a Statue of Admiral De Grasse, leader of the French Fleet.

Next up is the Cape Henry Lighthouse, the first federally funded lighthouse and the first public works project in the United States. Construction (1792) was authorized by George Washington and overseen by Alexander Hamilton. The Lighthouse is open to the public and guests can climb 191 steps to the top for a breathtaking view of where the Chesapeake Bay meets the Atlantic Ocean. Located next door (not open to the public) is the New Cape Henry Lighthouse, still in use today, and is the tallest cast iron, fully enclosed lighthouse in the United States. A gift shop is located on-site.

Head to downtown Norfolk and spend the afternoon watching Tall Ships from around the world sail into Norfolk’s Harbor, at Sail2025® Virginia. More than 60 international tall ships, characters, and military vessels; and more than 20 countries with a dock at Norfolk’s waterfront and the region. Ships will be open for touring after docking in downtown Norfolk. Enjoy lunch and explore Norfolk’s Waterfront with Navy exhibits and demonstrations, artisan foods and beverages, national and regional live entertainment, and much more.

Saturday – Day Three – Norfolk, Virginia

Start the morning at Nauticus and step aboard the largest and last battleship, Battleship Wisconsin. Battleship Wisconsin was commissioned 75 years ago. She saw action during the Luzon Attacks in World War II and earned five battle stars. The battleship served as a training ship and engaged in active assignments several times up until Feb. 27, 1991, during Operation Desert Storm.

Nauticus & The Battleship Wisconsin

It reached its final assignment on Dec. 7, 2000, when it docked in Norfolk to become a floating museum. Do not forget to stop on the second floor and visit the Hampton Roads Naval Museum. The Hampton Roads Naval Museum is an official museum of the United States Navy. The museum interprets the history of the U.S. Navy in and around Hampton Roads, Virginia from the American Revolutionary War to the present day for service members and the general public.

Lunch and shopping at Norfolk Premium Outlets.  The outlets offer a great selection of name-brand stores, a food court, and a restaurant.

In the afternoon, head to Norfolk. The first stop of the day is the Perry Glass Studio.  See artists from around the world blow glass art in a theater seating from noon to 1 pm.  Then take a guided tour of The Chrysler Museum of Art. Make sure your tour includes two copies of works that celebrate famous moments from the American Revolution, Washington at the Delaware: Two copies pay homage to John Trumbull’s Declaration of Independence and Thomas Sully’s Passage of the Delaware.

End the tour with a narrated tram tour of Norfolk Botanical Garden. Learn how the garden started a Works Progress Administration (WPA) grant for the Azalea Garden project. Since most of the male labor force was at work with other projects for the city, a group of more than 200 African-American women and 20 men were assigned to the Azalea Garden project. Today, Norfolk Botanical Garden includes 175 acres, with more than 60 themed gardens that can be viewed by tram, boat, or foot.

Enjoy dinner at Omar’s Carriage House.  The building is a historic site in Norfolk. The original Carriage House was built in the early 1840s. Its patrons then were horses. From the first floor, if you look up at the center of the room, you’ll see the large opening where hay used to be loaded into carriages.

Sunday – Day Four – Norfolk, Virginia

Spend the morning aboard the Victory Rover Naval Base Cruise for a two-hour narrated tour of Naval Station Norfolk, the world’s largest Naval Base. Cruise past the vessels that ensure our freedom – destroyers, submarines, air carriers, and more! The land on which Naval Station Norfolk is located was originally the site of the 1907 Jamestown Exposition. During this exposition, high-ranking naval officers were consulted and favored the idea that this site was ideal for a naval base. Immediately after the United States entered World War I in April 1917, the Secretary of the Navy was persuaded to purchase the property. A bill was passed for the purchase of 474 acres. 

Spend the rest of the day on the Virginia Waterfront at Sail2025® Virginia in downtown Norfolk, Virginia. 4,000 officers, cadets, and crews of more than 55 ships from 20 nations will engage in events along Virginia’s waterfront. A day of ship visitations, land and water events, food, and music.

Monday – Day Five – Virginia Beach, Virginia

Begin your morning with a Dolphin Watching Tour. Venture into the Atlantic Ocean in search of bottlenose Dolphins. Learn why Virginia Beach has the largest population of Bottlenose Dolphins on the East Coast (Whale Watching Tours are offered in the winter months)

Depart Coastal Virginia with lasting memories.

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Today’s students are environmentally conscious and deliberately mindful about their impact on our…
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Unique Group Shopping in Norfolk

There are many perks to traveling with a group, including amazing packages to take advantage of…
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