• psst … I’m a Realtor! Thanks for stopping by my website. I would love to help you find your dream home and community in the Hampton Roads or Williamsburg area or to sell your existing home. This website is authored by local resident and REALTOR, John Womeldorf. John is known around town as Mr. Williamsburg, for both his extensive knowledge of Hampton Roads and the historic triangle, and his expertise in the local real estate market. His websites, WilliamsburgsRealEstate.com and Mr Williamsburg.com were created as a resource for folks who are exploring a move to Williamsburg, VA , Hampton Roads VA and the surrounding areas of the Virginia Peninsula. On his website you can search homes for sale , foreclosures, 55+ active adult communities, condos and town homes , land and commercial property for sale in Williamsburg, Yorktown, New Kent, Poquoson, and Gloucester, VA as well as surrounding markets of Carrolton, Chesapeake,Gloucester, Hampton, Isle of Wight, Portsmouth Mathews, Newport News Norfolk, Poquoson, Smithfield, , Suffolk, Surry, Va Beach, Yorktown and York County Virginia You can reach John by email John@MrWilliamsburg.com or phone @ 757-254-813

Are you looking for more info on Williamsburg VA real estate ?

My main website is MrWilliamsburg.com , head on over there to get all the current news and updates on homes and communities in the area..

eSignature_Womeldorf

Busch Gardens Williamsburg Special Events 2017

Details are still being added but here are the main special event announcements for the 2017 Busch Gardens Williamsburg season. Concerts are back this year with Summer Nights Concert Series featuring popular rock, pop, country and contemporary Christian performers live under the stars in the Royal Palace Theatre. Confirmed acts so far include 38 Special, Josh Turner, MercyMe, and, with additional names to be announced. Concerts are free with park admission.

Summer Nights
(July 1 – August 31, 2017)


busch-gardens-fireworks

New Shows

Two special shows also join the Summer Nights line-up. Britmania™, a new musical revue featuring British hits from the 1960s to today, debuts June 30, and will be performed throughout the day in the Globe Theatre. Busch Gardens also will debut a new show in Das Festhaus® on March 31. The yet-to-be-named show will feature traditional German music and dances, with a modern twist, offering diners a fun Oktoberfest experience every day.

Jack Hanna Weekend
(Sat. March 25 & Sun. March 26, 2017 )

Join “Jungle Jack” and some animal ambassadors at Busch Gardens® as they examine the importance of wildlife conservation. With his infectious energy, Jack Hanna makes animal and conservation education entertaining for the whole family. Jack will be in the Globe Theatre at 11:30 a.m. and 3:30 p.m. both days.

Food & Wine Festival
(Fri., Sat., & Sun., May 26 – July 2, 2017)

Tickle those taste buds with culinary delights at Busch Gardens® Food & Wine Festival. Enjoy authentic tastes from around the world while strolling through the world’s most beautiful theme park. Individual tasting portions make exploring all that the Food and Wine Festival has to offer easy. The hardest decision might just be deciding what to eat, or drink, first.

Fireworks Spectacular

(July 3 & 4, 2017)

Celebrate Independence Day with two days of fireworks. The pyrotechnic displays will illuminate the skies. Guests can set up at their favorite spot in the park and watch a colorful display.

Bier Fest
(Select Days, Sept. 1 – 17, 2017)

More than 200 years of Oktoberfest traditions come to life this fall at Busch Gardens ® Bier Fest. Raise a glass to toast the end of summer with a variety of craft beers from around the globe. Sample traditional German food, listen to live music, and experience all this unique Bavarian celebration has to offer. Prost!

Howl-O-Scream®
(Select Days, Sept. 23 – Oct. 29, 2017)

Fill fall nights with fright at Busch Gardens® Howl-O-Scream®. At the stroke of 6 p.m. Busch Gardens becomes home to a host of creepy creatures that lie in wait for unsuspecting victims. Fear abounds in the Virginia theme park’s collection of haunted houses, Terror-tories™ and darkly entertaining live shows.

Christmas Town™
(Select Days, Nov. 24 – Jan. 1, 2018)

With eight millions lights, one of the largest light displays in North America, Christmas shines brightest at Busch Gardens ® Christmas Town ™.  Festive food and drink, holiday shopping and heart-warming shows make the season come alive at Busch Gardens.

Sneak preview of new wooden roller coaster at Busch Gardens Williamsburg

I just got back from a construction tour of Invadr, Busch Gardens Williamsburg newest ride and the first wooden roller coaster at the park. Remember riding a wooden roller coaster as a kid ? Well Busch Gardens is hoping to recapture that feeling. “Nothing feels like a wooden coaster ” said Adam House with Great Coasters International the PA based contractor Busch Gardens partnered with to build InvadR.

The wooden roller coaster will include a 74-foot drop through two tunnels, nine hills and two tunnels. Top speed will approach 50 mph. And its all gravity powered. I have to admit when I heard it was a wood coaster I assumed the entire structure was wood. Not so, all the rails are wood but most of the structure is steel..

The trains, or frames, used to travel around the track on Gwazi at Busch Gardens  in Tampa. After that ride was dismantled the cars were brought to Williamsburg last summer and  completely stripped, inspected and updated to current technologies, with the added theming and comfortable seats, to produce a great ride on InvadR.

Busch Gardens will host a pass-member preview day March 18 and will open to the public March 25.

 

 

 

How is the real estate market in Williamsburg Virginia ? August 2015

When looking at sales statistics for any market you really need to drill down into the specific price range to gain an in depth understanding of what is happening. As you can see in the chart below depending on the price range closed sales, number of homes on the market and pending sales are drastically different within the various price bands. These number reflect sales in the 23188, 23188 and 23168 zip codes which cover the areas of City of Williamsburg, James City County, Upper York County and the Toano areas. How is the real estate market in Williamsburg Virginia ? August 2015

Does it seem like there aren’t many homes on the market ? That is a result of a dearth of listings. The number of homes on the market is down almost 30% over last year in the $200-$250k price range and between 9% and 160% in the $250k to $600k price ranges.  As a result of low inventory overall sales are down slightly (3%) from last year. But sales in the 350-400k range are up 30.8% and 50% in the $600k to $750k range.

Home sellers and buyers are basically on an  equal footing when supply equals demand. The magic number, many housing experts say, is six.

As in, "it’ll take six months to sell all the homes now on the market at the current pace of sales."

In Williamsburg we are basically there in the under $400k market. Above that we still have a ways to go with inventories ranging from 10 months of supply in the $500-$600k range and as high as 22 months in the $750k + price range.

One last note I am happy to report. Although sales for the year are down slightly in the overall Williamsburg VA real estate market our company ( Liz Moore and Associates) continues to lead the market in sales. Our companies sales are up 38% over last year. We lead the area in sales and sell one in six homes in the market.

psst … I’m a Realtor! Thanks for stopping by my website. I  would love to help you find your dream home and community in the Hampton Roads or Williamsburg area or to sell your existing home.If you’re a Williamsburg or Coastal Virginia home seller who has been wondering if it might finally be time to sell, email me at John@MrWilliamsburg.com ,  and I can prepare a complimentary analysis of market value for you – you just may be pleasantly surprised.

This post was authored by local resident and REALTOR, John Womeldorf. John is known around town as Mr. Williamsburg, for both his extensive knowledge of Hampton Roads and the historic triangle, and his expertise in the local real estate market. His websites,WilliamsburgsRealEstate.com and Mr Williamsburg.com were created as a resource for folks who are exploring a move toWilliamsburg, VA , Hampton Roads VA and the  surrounding areas of the Virginia Peninsula.

You can search homes for sale , active adult communities, 55+ communities,  condos and townhomes , land and commercial property for sale in Williamsburg, Yorktown, New Kent,  Poquoson, and Gloucester, VA as well as surrounding markets here

You can reach John by phone at 757-254-8136 or email him at John@MrWilliamsburg.com

I look forward to serving your real estate needs!

Read the latest Fords Colony newsletter…

Folks considering a move to Fords Colony in Williamsburg VA should read the latest issue of the “Talk of The Colony for June 15.

The Talk of the Colony is a monthly newsletter that is distributed to all homeowners at the first of each month. In it you will find details of over 52 clubs for Fords Colony residents along with monthly happenings, articles on aging, community updates and a wealth of other important information.

 

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Ford’s Colony is an award winning multi-generational community of over 5000 residents in more than 2400 homes.  It is situated on 3,000 acres in Virginia’s Historic Triangle, comprised of Williamsburg, Jamestown, and Yorktown. With nearby Chesapeake Bay and Atlantic Ocean beaches to the east and the beautiful Shenandoah Valley and Blue Ridge Mountains to the west, Ford’s Colony is surrounded by a wide range of outdoor activities, entertainment, arts and cultural venues, good shopping and great dining. 

Ford’s Colony is a gated community, designed and built along landscaped roads that meander in and around a landscape of ponds, wetlands and woodlands.  The community has activities to suit residents of all ages who come from across the country and around the world with diverse backgrounds, experiences and careers.  Ford’s Colony offers about 52 clubs and activities, two community pools, hard and clay tennis courts, a nature trail, walking and bicycle paths, as well as the Ford’s Colony Country Club with three golf courses.

Read more about Fords Colony here

Search homes for sale in Fords Colony here

Busch Gardens Announces new roller coaster 

 

Roller coaster features multiple launch elements, loop-the-loop inversion

 – Busch Gardens’ newest thrill attraction, Tempesto™, debuts April 25 at Busch Gardens. Park President Carl Lum announced the launch coaster’s name, its key features and its opening date during a special pass member preview day held March 21.

Tempesto’s three launch experiences propel riders forward and backward through the ride’s station house, speeding past waiting guests at more than 60 miles per hour. Riders then climb 154 feet in the air for Tempesto’s signature loop-the-loop inversion.

“Guests waiting to experience Tempesto will certainly feel its power as the coaster train races past them at highway speeds,” said Larry Giles, Busch Gardens’ vice president of engineering.

Work on Tempesto began in fall 2014. The construction team bolted the final piece of track in place in late January. The construction phase will come to an end in the next few weeks and the the park’s operations team will begin ride testing.

“I’m looking forward to seeing the expression on our guests’ faces when they watch Tempesto in action,” said Park President Carl Lum. “The speed of this launch coaster, combined with its compact footprint will make for an exhilarating ride.”

  • Now through March 31, the Williamsburg parks are offering a great deal to enjoy Tempesto over and over with a 2-Park Fun Card. For just $75 – the same price as a one-day ticket to Busch Gardens – guests receive unlimited admission to both Busch Gardens Williamsburg and Water Country USA through Sept. 7.The offer represents a 25 percent savings off the regular price of a 2-Park Fun Card. For more information, visitwww.buschgardens.com/va.

 

 

Destination Recreation Expo Sat Feb 21, 2015

Your one-stop-shop for everything James City County Parks and Recreation has to offer! Discover your parks and facilities, learn about all the classes and programs offered throughout the year and be one of the first to register for summer camps! Informational booths, interactive demonstrations and hands-on activities are just a few great features of this event. We’ll keep your children engaged while you gather information about summer camp opportunities, sports, outdoor, aquatic programs, special events, parks and facilities, REC Connect, inclusion and therapeutic programs and activities offered through our affiliate organizations. Raffles and discounts for camps, classes and facilities given on the day of event! All ages welcome.

Saturday, Feb. 21: Destination Recreation Expo, Free, 9 a.m.-noon at the James City County Recreation Center

5301 Longhill Rd.
Williamsburg, VA 23188

 757-259-5353

More info here

Kids play all Spring and Summer with a Free 2-Park Preschool Pass

IT’S GOOD TO BE A KID AT BUSCH GARDENS®
AND WATER COUNTRY USA®

WILLIAMSBURG (February 2, 2015) – Taking young children to Busch Gardeimagens® and
Water Country USA® is more affordable than ever with a free 2-Park Preschool Pass. This limited-time, online-only offer, lets kids ages 3 to 5 enjoy free unlimited admission to the Williamsburg theme parks through Sept. 7.
Busch Gardens offers more than 50 KIDsiderate® attractions, including Sesame Street® Forest of Fun™ and Land of the Dragons®. Kid-sized roller coasters like Grover’s Alpine Express at Busch Gardens and Water Country USA’s Kritter Korral™ are among the can’t miss attractions waiting for little ones to enjoy.
And for a limited time, the Williamsburg parks are offering a great deal on a 2015
2-Park Fun Card. For just $75, a savings of 25 percent off the regular price of a 2-Park Fun Card, guests receive unlimited admission to both Busch Gardens Williamsburg and Water Country USA through Sept. 7.
For more information and to register for the free, 2-Park Preschool Pass, visit http://www.buschgardens.com/bgwpreschoolpass before May 31. Proof of the child’s age is required at the time the Preschool Pass is redeemed and must be redeemed at either park by May 31, 2015. Examples of valid identification are an original certified birth certificate or travel passport. Children ages 2 and younger receive complimentary admission and do not need to register.

A Mr. Williamsburg -Neighborhood Spotlight: Governor’s Land at Two Rivers, Williamsburg VA

An award-winning golf course, two pools, a deep water harbor marina, tennis courts, and a clubhouseGovLandSign hopping with social activities — this is Governor’s Land at Two Rivers. Yet, so is this: miles of private trails for quiet walks through the woods and marshlands, park benches placed for optimum viewing of nesting eagles tending their young, and a sand beach along the James River that’s perfect for picnics and bonfires.

For Dan Fitzpatrick and his wife, Tryna, it was that active, family-oriented lifestyle that drew them to Governor’s Land four years ago. “We have three daughters and knew that the local public schools were highly rated,” said Dan, who with Tryna owns and operates 3a Media, an IT marketing company. “We also like that even though Governor’s Land is fairly large, when you come into it, past the front security area, you feel like you’re entering a small community.”

Governor’s Land offers a variety of luxury homes — Federal, Colonial, Georgian, and Cape Cod – to view all homes for sale in this neighborhoodappeal to the genial mix of empty-nesters/retirees and young families that call it home. Located seven miles from Colonial Williamsburg, at the junction of the James and Chickahominy rivers, it encompasses more than 1,400 acres, sixty percent of which are dedicated green space, including 200 acres of shoreline and a wildlife sanctuary. “The neighborhood makes it a priority to maintain its protected wetlands,” Dan said, noting that owls, eagles and osprey are just a few of the birds that thrive in the ecologically rich area.

The community’s myriad recreational offerings include miles of walking and bike trails, a favorite with the Fitzgeralds, who can hop on the Virginia Capital Trail from just outside the Governor’s Land entrance. The 18-hole, Two Rivers Country Club golf course was designed by three-time GolfGovLandGolf Architect of the Year Tom Fazio, and Golf Digest has twice named it one of the Top 10 courses in Virginia. (It encompasses tidal marshlands, crystalline lakes, woodlands, and 1,000 yards of riverfront.) As Williamsburg’s only member-owned golf club, it offers year-round clinics and tournaments for all ages and levels of golfers.

The Two Rivers clubhouse is a neighborhood hub, with waterfront restaurants Dan described as “having the best sunsets, hands down.” There is sophisticated fine dining at the River Room, and casual fare and cocktails at the bustling Osprey Grille, Terrace and Bar, which offers live music on weekends. Clubhouse activities range from speaker forums and pasta nights to games of bridge, poker, and mah-jongg.

GovLandPoolGovernor Land’s pools are also gathering spots. “On July 4th, Uncle Sam comes out to lead the group to the pool for a cookout. It’s like Norman Rockwell in 2012,” Dan said, laughing. Likewise, the community’s beach, which is equipped with picnic tables, a grill and outdoor shower, offers more than swimming. “In the summer, people grill there, they have a bonfire. There’s a real sense of this being a family community,” Dan noted. The beach is also the site of the country club’s annual Christmas party, which features a boat parade, caroling, a marshmallow roast, and Santa’s arrival on an offshore barge.

It’s not only the natural setting and country club amenities that make Governor’s Landing exceptional, but also the sense of being part of a safe (24-hour security includes surveillance cameras and a car patrol) and caring community. “If my kids didn’t make it to the bus, I know there’d be someone there to look out for them,” Dan said. “There’s a feeling here that your neighbors look out for you and your well being.”

Governor’s Land, which is a short drive from the shops, restaurants and cultural activities of downtown Williamsburg, will have 733 homes when it is fully built-out. There are currently homes on the market, as well as select home building sites available. For more information, or to arrange a personal tour of Governor’s Land, contact realtor John Womeldorf via email at  John@MrWilliamsburg.com  or by telephone at (757) 254-8136.

 

Psst. I’m a real estate agent…

This Neighborhood Spotlight is brought to you by local resident and REALTOR, John Womeldorf, known around town as “Mr. Williamsburg” because of his extensive knowledge of the Williamsburg/Hampton Roads area and its real estate market. If you are relocating, retiring, seeking a vacation home, or simply curious about homes and neighborhoods in the Williamsburg/Hampton Roads area, John is happy to help. Click here to send him an email, or call him at 757-254-8136.

 

Neighborhood Orientation ToursGovLandArial

Are the schools good? How is the traffic? Can you hear planes from nearby airports? What are the grocery options nearby ?

It can be daunting to get all the information you need to choose not only the right house, but also the right neighborhood. Schedule one of John’s Neighborhood Orientation tours of communities in the Williamsburg/Hampton Roads area to get such essentials as:

home prices – shopping centers – military bases – recreational facilities – public and private schools – public transportation – aircraft/traffic noise – flood zones – playgrounds – major traffic patterns and commute times and more

Click here to email John about arranging a tour, or call him at 757-254-8136.

Are You A Military Family?

The Williamsburg/Hampton Roads area is home to many military families. John is experienced in helping them with the unique issues raised by frequent relocations,(PCS) and he understands the kind of support team it takes to make smooth transitions both into and out of the area. Click here to email John about your needs and concerns, or call him at 757-254-8136.

Specific Needs Properties

Active Adult/55+ Communities, Building Lots, Foreclosure/REO Properties, Townhomes, Condominiums, Golf Course properties and more….

If you have a specific type of property in mind, John can help you find it. For assistance in unearthing just the right property in the Williamsburg/Hampton Road area, click here to contact John by email, or call him at 757-254-8136.

FAST FACTS

Community: Governor’s Land at Two Rivers

Location: Only a few minutes drive from Colonial Williamsburg, where the Chickahominy and James rivers meet

Number of Homes: 733 when built-out only a few building lots left.

Lots for New Construction: Yes Click here to search

 

Public Schools: Matoaka Elementary, Hornsby Middle School, and Jamestown High School. Click here to email realtor John Womeldorf about arranging a tour or interview with the administration of any of these schools.

Nearby Private Schools: Walsingham Academy, Williamsburg Christian Academy, Providence Classical, Williamsburg Montessori, Hampton Roads Academy

Homes Styles: Federal, Colonial, Cape Cod, and Georgian

Home Sizes: 2500-7000 sq feet (4000 Avg)

Date Homes Built: 1991- Today

Lot sizes: .30 to an acre. .56 Avg.

HOA: The Governor’s Land at Two Rivers Homeowner’s Association fee is $223 monthly. Membership in Two Rivers Country is mandatory for homeowners in Gov Land. Different club membership options are available, including some for residents of Williamsburg who do not live in Governor’s Land; email John@MrWilliamsburg.com for details.

Home Prices: From the mid $400’s to $1 million plus

Property Tax Rate: .77 per $100 of value . ( Taxes on a home valued at $600k would be $4620 annually)

HOA: The Governor’s Land at Two Rivers Homeowner’s Association fee is $635 every three months. Different membership options are available, including some for residents of Williamsburg who do not live in Governor’s Land; email John@MrWilliamsburg.com for details.

Home Sales: There are currently 47 homes on the market, for prices ranging from $458,000 to $3,000,000. click to search all homes for sale in this williamsburg communityIn the last 12 months, 24 homes sold for between $425,000 and $999,000 (an average price per square foot of $166). Average time on the market was 145 days.

 

Property Tax Rate: .77 per $100

Public Transportation: Governor’s Land is within 30 to 90 minutes of three international airports: Norfolk, Richmond, and Williamsburg/Newport News. Amtrak has a station here in Williamsburg with direct service to the northeast corridor. Richmond, DC, NYC and beyond.

NEIGHBORHOOD AMENITIES


· Award-winning Golf CourseGovLandKayak

· Clubhouse with Waterfront Restaurants

· Deep Water Harbor Marina for Boats up to 50 Feet in Length

· Private Beach with Picnic Tables, Grill, Outside Shower

· 24-hour Security Patrols and Camera Surveillance

· Exercise Facility

· Pools

· Tennis CourtsGovLandBoatSlip

· Wildlife Sanctuary

· Marshlands Boardwalk

· Tot Lot

· Ball fields

· Volleyball and Croquet Courts

· Walking and Biking GovLandTrailTrails

· Planned Social Activities

Colonial Williamsburg Announces $600 Million Campaign

The Colonial Williamsburg Foundation has embarked on a $600 million campaign to both reinforce and reimagine its role in the 21st century as a leader in history education and historical preservation.
Since its restoration began in 1926, Colonial Williamsburg has evolved as a source of learning and inspiration about America’s founding. To this day, visitors to the colonial capital city encounter the very halls, homes and taverns where visionaries like Thomas Jefferson and Patrick Henry debated the promise—and perils—of a revolution that would change the course of human history.
Preserving this essential part of America’s heritage—and finding new ways to deepen the public’s appreciation of its relevance today—is the focus of the Campaign for History and Citizenship that Colonial Williamsburg will announce on Saturday, Nov. 22. Investments in the campaign will strengthen and expand the programs, staff, facilities and technological innovation necessary to advance Americans’ understanding of their nation’s history and the very principles on which their own citizenship is based.The Colonial Williamsburg Foundation has embarked on a $600 million campaign to both reinforce and reimagine its role in the 21st century as a leader in history education and historical preservation.
“The American Revolution set in motion the world’s greatest experiment in representative government; it remains a touchstone that helps Americans understand who we are and how we have evolved as such a diverse and enterprising society,” said Foundation President and CEO Mitchell B. Reiss, who will formally launch the campaign’s public phase with other Foundation leaders in a ceremony Saturday at the Capitol. “By preserving the artifacts, stories and very setting of the Revolution, Colonial Williamsburg offers modern Americans a direct link to the founding generation—whose extraordinary words and deeds challenge us to embrace our own roles in shaping our country’s future.”

 

Continue reading

Virginia Capital Trail ribbon cutting in Charles City Oct 15th

On Oct. 15, 2014 cyclists will gather at the Charles City Courthouse complex to officially cut the ribbon on the 13-mile Sherwood Forest section of the Virginia Capital Trail. Charles City County officials are planning to help celebrate the addition of 13 more miles (and 29 contiguous miles) of the trail. That would leave work still to completed in Richmond, Varina and New Market Heights in eastern Henrico County, all scheduled to be completed by summer 2015.

This is another opportunity to gather in huge numbers, sending a message to First Lady Dorothy McAuliffe, our keynote speaker, and officials from Richmond to Williamsburg that this trail is important to a lot of people throughout the whole region. 

Hope to see you there!

Sherwood Forest Ribbon Cutting

Please join us to celebrate the opening of the 13-mile Sherwood Forest phase of the Virginia Capital Trail!

Wednesday, October 15, 2014

11:00 am

Location: Charles City County Courthouse Complex, 10900 Courthouse Road, Charles City, VA 23030

Keynote Speaker: Virginia First Lady Dorothy McAuliffe

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The Virginia Capital Trail is a dedicated, paved pedestrian and bicycle trail that will connect the Commonwealth’s past and present capitals of Jamestown and Richmond along the Scenic Route 5 corridor.

Once complete, the Trail will traverse 50+ miles, four jurisdictions, and more than 400 years of history along one of the first inland routes in North America.

View the trail route and plan your visit.

Construction Progress for the VA Capital Trail

City of Richmond:

Rails have been pulled up just east of Lehigh Cement. City officials assure us they’re still on target for completion of this section by the spring of 2015.

Bridge over Gillies Creek

Varina:
V-DOT confirms that the Varina phase will be complete by summer 2015.

New Market Heights:

Scheduled to be complete by summer 2015

Archaeology open house at Kingsmill this weekend

The College of William & Mary’s Center for Archaeological Research will host an open house Saturday in Kingsmill to share with the public the work its staff has been conducting at a site believed to have been occupied in the 17th and 18th centuries.

More of the story here
http://wydaily.com/2014/10/01/archaeologists-to-host-open-house-at-kingsmill-dig-site?cat=localnews/

Lee Greenwood and The Romantics perform this weekend during Busch Gardens LIVE presented by Coca-Cola®.

It’s a red-white-and-blue-letter day at Busch Gardens® this July 4 weekend. As part of the park’s Star Spangled Nights celebration, an extended fireworks show will light up the sky July 3-5.
Country music singer Lee Greenwood will perform at 5 p.m. and 8 p.m. as part of the Busch Gardens® LIVE presented by Coca-Cola® concert series. Greenwood has recorded more than 30 albums with 25 charted singles and seven No. 1 hits including “Somebody’s Going to Love You” and “Dixie Road.” He has also given the country one of its most beloved patriotic songs, “God Bless the U.S.A.”
The Romantics keep the Royal Palace Theatre rocking July 5 when they perform during Busch Gardens LIVE presented by Coca-Cola. The high-energy group from Detroit with hits such as “Talking in Your Sleep” and “What I Like About You” will perform at 7 p.m.
The patriotic celebration continues nightly during Star Spangled Nights July 3 through Aug. 11. This celebration features breathtaking fireworks orchestrated to original music and an unforgettable patriotic atmosphere. Guests can also hop aboard the Rhine River Fireworks Cruise, have a drink at our Americana-inspired bar and have an up-close experience with our majestic Bald eagles.
All Busch Gardens LIVE concerts are included with park admission. For guests’ convenience complimentary tickets are distributed throughout the day at the park’s Guest Relations building. Tickets are distributed one per person on a first-come, first-served basis while supplies last. All party members must be present to receive tickets. Tickets are required for entry to the concert. Premium seating in a reserved area is also available with the purchase of concert and dinner packages. For more information, including complete concert and ticketing information, visit http://www.buschgardens.com/va or call (800) 343-7946.

MERCHANTS SQUARE HOSTS 6TH ANNUAL WILLIAMSBURG INVITATIONAL CAR SHOW June 8 Event Features Chrysler and Honors Mustang’s 50th Anniversary

On Sunday, June 8 from 10 a.m. – 3 p.m. Merchants Square will host the Colony Auto Enthusiasts for their 6th Annual Williamsburg Invitational Car Show featuring a collection of 12 Chrysler products including an award winning 1935 Imperial Airflow, a 1956 Plymouth Fury and a 1970 Plymouth Superbird.

Over 50 carefully selected cars from throughout the greater Williamsburg area are included in this unique non-competitive, non-commercial display. A special exhibit will recognize the 50th Anniversary of Mustang, while a second will illustrate the dramatic changes in “working carriages” from the 18th to the 20th Century. This exhibit will feature a circa 1775 carriage from the Colonial Williamsburg collection of carriages, a 1927 Ford Roadster Pickup and a custom, one of a kind, 1957 Oldsmobile Pickup.

This show is open to the public at no charge. All who attend are encouraged to make a cash donation in support of the wonderful service provided by RIDES, who will have a special display at the center of the car show.

The “Car Show Game” for all kids under 10 provides an opportunity for children and their parents to engage in the search for information to answer the “Car Show Game” questions. This search for answers requires the family to explore all of the cars in the show to find answers.

The Colony Auto Enthusiasts are a group of more than 50 Ford’s Colony residents with a common passion for cars: antique and modern, foreign and domestic. Inquires regarding the car displays may be directed to the Colony Auto Enthusiasts: info@colonyautoenthusiasts.com.

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We wanted a house with a great layout, we found a great home in the perfect neighborhood- FOR SALE NOW

 

Jen and Todd’s Ford Colony Home

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“We wanted a big house that had a great layout; we wanted our first really great family home.” That was Jen’s main goal when she and her husband, Todd, began their house search in the Williamsburg area after moving there from Cleveland. Of course, that perfect family home had to be located in the perfect neighborhood, one that was “quiet, safe and friendly.” And when they found their 3,200 square-foot home on Red Berkshire in Ford’s Colony, all those boxes were ticked.

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“The layout of this home is just fantastic. Every inch of it is space that is used, and we knew it would be great for parties,” says Jen about the 4-bedroom, 3.5-bath house. “We also liked that the home was so updated because it was a newer house.” The two-story Colonial was built in 2008.

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Ideal great room and kitchen. The main floor has open living and dining rooms, an eat-in kitchen, a master bedroom suite, and a two-story great room that has become Jen’s favorite space as her family has grown to include three young daughters and a dog. “The great room is flooded with beautiful light. You can look out and see the back yard and the tall trees,” Jen notes. “It also has a gas fireplace that we use often. It’s a great family space.”

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The spacious, up-to-date kitchen has granite tile countertops, stainless steel appliances, an island, and dark cabinets. “The kitchen has a clean, contemporary feel,” Jen says. She added a touch of whimsy by painting a chalk board for the kids on one wall.

 

Jen, who claims she is “not a cook but I try really hard,” especially loves the kitchen’s double ovens. “They are so wonderful for parties. For Easter, we had a big family dinner, and used one oven for a ham and the other for a turkey. It worked out great.”

 

Master bedroom flexibility. The first floor is also home to the master bedroom suite, which includes a large walk-in closet and a bathroom with double sinks and a jetted whirlpool tub. When their girls were very young, the couple used the main floor master suite as a guest bedroom, and converted a second floor bonus room into their master bedroom. “It worked out just fine because that bonus room is large, big enough to fit a pool table,” Jen says, noting that the room adjoins a bathroom. “When the kids got older we moved into the master bedroom suite on the first floor, and now use the bonus room as a guest bedroom, office, and playroom.”

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The second floor also has three bedrooms used by the girls, two of them connected with a Jack and Jill bathroom with two sinks. “The girls just loved running back and forth to each other’s rooms through the bathroom,” Jen says, noting that all of the bedrooms are “a good size.”

 

The back yard party place. Jen and Todd bought their home with plans to do plenty of entertaining there, and they have done just that.  Many of their parties have extended to the large, flat back yard, which Jen describes as “the yard everyone wants to come to.” The fully fenced yard includes swings, a slide, and a climbing wall for the kids. An extended back deck accommodates a grill and three tables.

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“We love to grill out, and to have family and friends join us,” Jen notes. “We especially throw really big birthday parties for the girls. We go all out with decorations inside and out, and lots of games. We’ve even rented a bounce house, which the kids loved.”

 

Close-knit community.  “I love our neighborhood,” Jen adds. “It’s quiet, there is little traffic, and it’s flat, so it’s wonderful for walking, running, and riding bikes.”

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The Ford’s Colony-Berkshire community stays connected through the Next Door social networking site. “We are an eclectic mix of retires and families, all of us borrowing from each other and watching out for each other,” Jen points out. She and one of her neighbors started a monthly pot luck party tradition, where families gather at a different person’s home each month. “Our neighborhood also does twice a year block parties,” she notes.

 

There are also planned activities through the Ford’s Colony Country Club, which is within walking distance of Jen’s home. “They have a lot of activities, bands, Pilates, and all kinds of clubs. There’s a newsletter that lets us know about everything, and keeps people involved.” Jen notes that the community also offers “Colony Kids” holiday events such as a July 4 parade and an Easter egg hunt. The pool also offers social activities.

 

The Ford’s Colony security staff keep families feeling safe. “They will check on your home while you’re on vacation,” Jen says. “If you lose a dog, they’ll help with that. They’re great.”

 

Amenities and location. Ford’s Colony is known for its amenities, which include award-winning golf courses, a country club, swimming pools, tennis courts, and 12 miles of beautiful walking/biking trails. Jen and Todd are not golfers, but they often use the pools and the trails. “I’m a runner, and I use the trails all the time,” Jen says. “This is just a beautiful place, with everything so well maintained.” Their girls frequently enjoy one of the Ford’s Colony playgrounds.

 

The location of Ford’s Colony also has been ideal for Jen and Todd. It’s just a quick drive to Busch Gardens, Colonial Williamsburg, and the outlet shopping malls.

 

Although they love their home, Jen and Todd have decided it’s time to move on. To help find a new family for this “great family home” they are working with John Womeldorf, the real estate agent who helped them find their home five years ago. “We first began working with John while we were still in Cleveland,” Jen says, noting she found him after searching online for an agent with “a great marketing presence” in Williamsburg. “We subscribed to his blog, and got a lot of great information about Williamsburg. He was so accommodating to us as out-of-towners, sending us videos and other information … and he was helpful and patient through the process of finding us the right home.” Jen laughs. “You can’t go wrong with a guy named Mr. Williamsburg!”

 

Why the stories? Because these aren’t just houses, they’re homes

 

Mr. Williamsburg knows that when you’re looking for a new place, you’re searching for more than just four walls plus amenities, you’re looking for that welcoming refuge we call home. That’s why we go beyond the standard “4 bedrooms, 3 baths on large lot” statistics, to share how others have lived in this house, to reveal the home’s unique personality, to help you decide whether this is a place where your family could thrive.

 

Likewise, we realize that you’re seeking not simply a development within a particular zip code, but also an opportunity to become part of a community. That’s why we share our sellers’ experiences as members of that neighborhood.

 

We trust these stories will assist you in finding your way home.

Want to tell your home’s story? Contact John “Mr. Williamsburg” Womeldorf at (757) 254-8136 or John@MrWilliamsburg.com  and we’ll get you started.

Bicycle, jog or walk along the Colonial Parkway on Saturday May 3rd 2014!

Bicycle, jog or walk along the Colonial Parkway on Saturday May 3rd 2014! at the 17th Annual Pedal the Parkway Pedal the Parkway will be held on Saturday, May 3, 2014. The National Park Service closes the Colonial Parkway to motor vehicles from Williamsburg to Jamestown for cyclists, runners and walkers of all ages to enjoy a car free Parkway. In 2012, over 1000 people enjoyed the beautiful scenery along the Parkway during this event. New in 2014, an Outdoor Activity Expo located at the ECO Discovery Park will be held to promote outdoor recreation and healthy living activities.

When: Saturday, May 3rd 2014 from 8 AM to 1 PM.

Where: Pedal the Parkway is held on the Colonial Parkway section running from Williamsburg’s Newport Ave entrance to Jamestown.

What: Pedal the Parkway will be held on Saturday, May 3, 2014. The National Park Service closes the Colonial Parkway to motor vehicles from Williamsburg to Jamestown for cyclists, runners and walkers of all ages to enjoy a car free Parkway. In 2012, over 1000 people enjoyed the beautiful scenery along the Parkway during this event. New in 2014, an Outdoor Activity Expo located at the ECO Discovery Park will be held to promote outdoor recreation and healthy living activities.

Who: Your local bicycling club, Williamsburg Area Bicyclists (WAB) is once again organizing the 17th Annual Pedal the Parkway to provide an enjoyable experience along the historic and temporarily car-free Colonial Parkway.

Why: Fun, free, and family-friendly alongside the beautiful James River. Non-competitive, start at your own time, go at your own pace.

Free bicycle helmets for children at the ECO Discovery Park while they last. Suitable for young families, special-needs athletes.

Need more Info? www.williamsburgbikemonth.org

Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/pages/Pedal-the-Parkway/117268508285310 Contact: Nancy Carter, njcarter@starpower.net, 757-229-4907

 

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Sales Dip For First Time in More Than a Year

February 2014

The Hampton Roads real estate market is off to a slower start in 2014. Residential listings for sale are up slightly from the prior year, while residential pending and settled sales experienced declines when compared to January 2013. Conversely, the distressed market improved slightly in January. 

Residential active listings increased a marginal .52% year-over-year to 10,222 units. Of the region’s seven major cities (Chesapeake, Hampton, Newport News, Norfolk, Portsmouth, Suffolk and Virginia Beach) Suffolk and Newport News saw the largest increases in the number of home for sale at 12.23% and 1.35%. Chesapeake and Portsmouth experienced the greatest declines year-over-year at 3.34% and 1.21% respectively. There is currently 5.72 month’s supply of inventory for the region, up slightly from last month’s 5.45 months, yet down 7.44% from January 2013’s 6.18 months.  

January’s residential pending sales experienced a 4.46% decline year-over-year. This is the first year-over-year decline the region has experienced in residential pending sales in more than two and a half years, since April 2011. Suffolk and Chesapeake saw the largest declines at 30.69% and 14.02% respectively, while Portsmouth and Norfolk were on the opposite end, with residential pending sales increasing 42.19% and 10.47% from 2013.  

Residential settled sales declined as well when compared to January 2013. The region experienced a significant 15.12% year-over-year drop in residential settled sales, the first such downswing since December 2012. Each of the region’s major cities experienced a decline, with Chesapeake and Portsmouth undergoing the most significant regressions at 29.96% and 27.38%.  Newport News and Norfolk saw the lowest declines when compared to January of last year, at 5.88% and 8.70%. The region’s January median sales price dipped a nominal 1.55% year-over-year, now at $190,000 vs. $193,000 in January 2013.  

Two significant weather incidents occurred in the Hampton Roads area in January, possible impacts to the final number of pending and settled sales. Snow events such as these can substantially affect the ability to show properties, and may even delay closings, as settlements often occur at the end of a month (the second snow storm occurred January 29th).  Distressed homes, those that are either foreclosures or short sales, made improvement in the local real estate market. In January 2014 distressed homes accounted for 21.25% of all active residential listings, which is down 5.75% from January 2013 and the lowest since September 2010’s 20.95%.

Distressed homes accounted for 29.49% of residential settled sales during January 2014. This makeup is 5.39% lower than that of January 2013, when they accounted for 34.88% of residential settled sales. 

 

 

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Information provided by REIN

 

“Everything were looking for is in Williamsburg Bluffs” the Crosby Story

In 1997, Ed and Sun Crosby were just coming out of military housing, where they’d known only one or two of their frequently-changing neighbors. They were excited about getting into a more static community, one where they could form long-term friendships with other residents. Their new community also needed to have an “optimum location” that would allow easy access to Hampton, where Ed worked as a network consultant.

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The Crosbys found everything they were looking for at Williamsburg Bluffs, then a new development in York County, offering high-quality schools and good accessibility to both Richmond (45-minute drive) and Hampton (30 minutes away). “It’s great that the neighborhood is so close to I-64,” Ed notes. “But it’s not so close that we have road noise.” 

More importantly, Williamsburg Bluffs turned out to be the friendly, close-knit type of neighborhood that Ed and Sun had yearned for. “We know all of the neighbors on our block, even their kids’ names,” says Ed. “That’s a great plus for us. You just don’t see this type of closeness in a lot of neighborhoods today.”

“There’s a big variety here, with many retired military families, but also a lot that aren’t,” Ed adds. “People on our cul-de-sac routinely have block parties with another, close-by cul-de-sac. About every two months we get our grills together and everyone brings a covered dish. There are usually about 3 to 12 kids, although maybe half the people don’t have any children. It’s a really nice mix.”

In addition to neighborhood events ranging from wine-and-cheese parties to crab fests, residents can mingle at the tennis courts, playground, picnic pavilion, or community pool, all maintained by the community’s HOA for a modest fee of  $33/month. “The pool is rarely crowded,” Ed says. “Sometimes it’s like your own private pool.” Ed also uses the community’s sports field to practice his golf swing.

Ed, who has a 7-year-old daughter, describes Williamsburg Bluffs as “absolutely a great place for kids. All the streets in the neighborhood end in cul-de-sacs. There is single access, and no through-traffic, keeping it very child-friendly.”

The house the couple built, a two-story, traditional-style home, is similarly family-friendly. It has four bedrooms, 2.5 baths, and a relaxing family room adjacent to an eat-in kitchen with granite countertops and ceramic tile floors. “The family room is our main area,” Ed says. “There’s a wood-burning fireplace there, and it’s so close to the kitchen. We like that it’s on the back of the house and overlooks the back yard. The family room also opens to the deck through French doors.”

 

The house has a good flow between rooms. “There are no doors to any of the rooms on the first floor,” Ed points out. “And, there’s a nice flow from the living room to the family room, with the dining room in-between. That works great for our Super Bowl parties, when one group can be in the family room and another in the living room, with the dining room central to both.” The living and dining rooms, along with the two-story foyer, all have oak hardwood floors.

But it’s a private space, the master bedroom suite, that is Ed’s favorite spot in the house. The generously sized bedroom features a tray ceiling, crown and chair rail molding, and plush carpeting. (The couple upgraded all of the home’s carpeting two years ago.) It connects to a large master bathroom with a jetted tub nestled beneath a bay window, and a step-down sitting room that Sun uses for her work room. That work space is where Sun creates one of the home’s more unique features: sophisticated custom window treatments. “Sun was an interior design professional before she became a full-time mom,” Ed notes. “Her window treatments are all custom and very elaborate. Some of them even include cornices.” The custom window treatments convey with the house.

Sun’s personal touch is also evident outside the home, in the landscaping that she has done in the quarter-acre yard. “We left the very back of the yard as natural woods to create a nice buffer from our neighbors,” Ed says. “Then we planted flowering trees such as dogwood and weeping cherry, and maples along the sides. The weeping cherry, which attracts butterflies, is at window level in the kitchen, and it’s beautiful to see.”

Sun also planted flowers such as calla lilies and cannas for back yard color, and added a moveable, cast iron fire pit (it conveys) that can be used in the yard or on the deck. The result is a yard that exudes serenity beneath a treed canopy. “The deck sits up high and it’s shaded from the summer sun,” Ed says. “In the evening, you can see the sun setting over the trees. Relaxing on the deck is very nice, very comfortable. We use it a lot and we love it.”

The Crosby family is relocating and has put the home on the market through John “Mr. Williamsburg” Womeldorf. “John came recommended by a neighbor,” Ed says. “She had used him to buy into this neighborhood.”

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Why the stories? Because these aren’t just houses, they’re homes.

 Mr. Williamsburg knows that when you’re looking for a new place, you’re searching for more than just four walls plus amenities, you’re looking for that welcoming refuge we call home.  That’s why we go beyond the standard “4 bedrooms, 3 baths on large lot” statistics, to share how others have lived in this house, to reveal the home’s unique personality, to help you decide whether this is a place where your family could thrive.

Likewise, we realize that you’re seeking not simply a development within a particular zip code, but also an opportunity to become part of a community. That’s why we share our sellers’ experiences as members of that neighborhood.

 We trust these stories will assist you in finding your way home.

 Want to tell your home’s story? Contact John “Mr. Williamsburg” Womeldorf at (757) 254-8136 or John@MrWilliamsburg.com  and we’ll get you started.  

A Strong Start to 4th Quarter 2013

 

 

 

 The Hampton Roads’ 4th quarter real estate market is off to a strong start. Residential active listings, under contracts, and settled sales all experienced year-over-year increases. Meanwhile distressed homes continue to impact approximately one quarter of the region’s market.  In October 2013, 3,115 new listings were added to the multiple listing service (MLS), with a median list price of $212,500. Compared to 2012, this is an increase of 12.09% in the number of new listings for the month of October, and a 10.10% increase in the median list price (up from $193,000).

Residential active listings increased a marginal 1.12% when compared to October 2012. This makes the third consecutive month in which residential active listings have increased year-over-year. Of the region’s seven major cities (Chesapeake, Hampton, Newport News, Norfolk, Portsmouth, Suffolk, Virginia Beach) Virginia Beach and Suffolk saw the largest increases in the number of homes for
sale at 7.39% and 3.73%, while Hampton and Newport News experienced declines of 3.37% and 3.12%. The region’s supply of inventory currently stands at 6.23 months, with Virginia Beach recording as low as 4.77 months inventory, and Portsmouth as high as 7.88 months.  Residential pending sales in the region continue to increase significantly, with a 15.19% year- over-year jump. All of the area’s major cities except Suffolk saw year-over-year increases, with Hampton and Portsmouth the primary contributors at 65.26% and 35.35%. The smallest year-over-year increases belonged to Virginia Beach and Norfolk at 2.94% and 14.97% respectively. Suffolk experienced no change year-over-year.

The residential settles sales segment of the market performed strong in October 2013, up 16.41% when compared to the same time last year. Portsmouth and Norfolk provided the most notable gains of 35.48% and 31.29% respectively. Hampton and Newport News were the only two major cities to experience year-over-year declines in residential settled sales, down 3.23% and 0.79%. The residential median sales price is currently $200,000, up just slightly .50% from October 2012’s $199,000.  While new construction sales remain approximately half of what they were 10 years ago, this month’s residential new construction sales are up 17.51% year-over-year. In October 2013 there were 255 new homes sold, more than half of which were built in Chesapeake (76 units) and Virginia Beach (53 units). October hasn’t seen new construction sales this high since 2007, when 304 units were sold.  The current median sales price for new construction homes is up 6.96%, from $278,400 in October 2012 to the current $297,770.  Distressed homes, those that are foreclosures or short sales, account for 22.13% of all residential active listings in October 2013. This percentage has held steady at or near the 22% mark for the past 6 months. Distressed homes are even more prevalent in home sales, as they account for 25.54% of all residential settled sales.

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The Whole Holiday Package in Merchants Square

 

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Inspired by its rich heritage of 85 years, Merchants Square, adjacent to historic Colonial Williamsburg, brings the full spirit of the holidays together with an atmosphere that delivers the whole holiday package—unique shopping, fine dining and entertainment and events for the entire family.  The Square brings the magic of the holidays alive with traditions for children of all ages. For the sixth year, the Virginia Theatre Machine brings its witty production of the Charles Dickens classic “A Christmas Carol,” performed in less than 30 minutes. New this year, fellow revelers can join in the tradition of Christmas caroling by the Merchants Square Christmas tree on Duke of Gloucester Street. The Williamsburg Waites will lead family and friends in a sing-along to the classic holiday tunes.

Visitors can forget the stress of shopping with the specialty boutiques and delightful selection of eateries while strolling musicians and choral groups further enrich this one-of-a-kind experience. Santa greets little ones at the William & Mary Bookstore on Saturdays and Sundays, with a professional photographer available to capture that special moment. On special Saturday mornings, Santa will arrive early to enjoy milk and cookies and story time with his young fans.  Most retail stores open at 10 a.m. on Saturday and noon on Sunday. Individual store hours will vary. A detailed schedule of performances and Santa appearances can be found on www.merchantssquare.org/holiday

Events include:

A Christmas Carol – There is nothing more delightful than the Victorian-era Dickens tale to bring the essence of Christmas. Appealing to young and old alike, this refreshingly funny version of the timeless tale of the power of forgiveness is a welcome reminder of the magic the holiday brings. Conceived and brought exclusively to Merchants Square four years ago by the Virginia Theatre Company’s Mark Lerman, this lively, entertaining and interactive 30-minute version of “A Christmas Carol” is sure to have the entire family laughing.

New Caroling with the Williamsburg Waites-Family and friends are invited to get into the holiday spirit as they join in a sing-along to their favorite Christmas carols by the Merchants Square Christmas tree on Duke of Gloucester Street.

Holiday Farmers Market – Visit this open-air market filled with fresh and organic produce, home-baked specialties, flowers and greens, herbs, demonstrations, music and more. Be sure to get some fresh pumpkin butter, apple butter and other items for your holiday feasts.

It’s Santa Time! – It’s not Christmas until you hear the old holiday jingles and you see the jolly old man with the red coat.

  • Santa at the College of William & Mary Bookstore – Hear a captivating story and enjoy milk and cookies with Santa. Capture the special moment with a picture.
  • Strolling Father Christmas – Feel the spirit of the past with Saint Nicholas who will stroll the streets of Merchants Square until Christmas. He might even have a little magic up his sleeve!

Strolling musicians – Encounter the enticing performances of colonial balladeers, College of William & Mary choral groups and brass ensembles. The music that spans different musical eras and styles will make your experience a truly magical one.

Blue Talon Bistro Turkey Trot 5K – What better way to start the holidays than a healthy activity for the whole family? The race in historic downtown Williamsburg and through the campus of the College of William and Mary is an incredible opportunity to get involved in the community. Events will be held for children and a raffle of outstanding food and wine items will help raise money to combat hunger in this country.

Fall Open House Tour in Ford’s Colony

The annual Fall Ford’s Colony Open House Tour will be held this Saturday, October 11th from 11am to 4pm.  Please plan to check out the exquisite Liz Moore listings and be entered into a drawing for an Opus 9 gift card.  I have a beautiful listing to be open in this Tour of Homes as well; 108 Machrie.

 Click here to download a copy of the brochure with a list of participating homes and directions, or call the office at 757.645.4106.  

homes for sale in Ford's Colony

Merchant’s Square is celebrating 85 years

Merchant’s Square is celebrating 85 years Friday, October 4th from 6:00 to 9:00pm.  

They invite everyone to Come shop and dine with us and celebrate our 85th anniversary. We hope you enjoyed the trivia contest that ran through April and early May, and the special pictures and signs throughout the Square. Please join us for our final celebration of the year on October 4.

After 85 years, Merchants Square is better than ever with more than 40 shops and restaurants. And on the eve of An Occasion for the Arts, we’re throwing a big birthday bash to celebrate! The outdoor concert is free. Please bring a lawn chair.  The Right on Band begins at 7:00pm & Fun for the whole Family begins at 6:00pm with children’s activities in front of W&M Bookstore.

For More information you can visit: http://merchantssquare.org

 

 

 

Wonder what’s up at Lumber Liquidators ?

Federal agents Thursday conducted a court-ordered search of Lumber Liquidators’ headquarters in James City County and another location in the Richmond area.

The company said the search had to do with certain imports it made.

Brandon Montgomery, a spokesman for the Department of Homeland Security, said agents from his office, the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service and the Department of Justice executed the search warrant at the company’s Toano office.

Agents also searched a location on Broad Street in the Richmond area, he said.

Read more here

Fall Landscape Extravaganza

The annual Fall Landscape Extravaganza sponsored by the Virginia Cooperative Extension-York/Poquoson Office will be held on Saturday, October 5, at Yorkminster Presbyterian Church, 6218 George Washington Memorial Highway, Grafton. Sign-in begins at 8:30 a.m., followed by orientation at 9 a.m. Two blocks of concurrent educational programs will be offered from 9:15 to 10:30 a.m. and from 10:45 a.m. to noon. Classes include:

  • Ten Plant Problems in Tidewater – Mike Andruczyk, Extension Agent, Chesapeake
  • Art in the Garden – Bill Smoot, Fred Heutte Center, Norfolk
  • New and Underused Plants – Eric Bailey, Landscapes by Eric
  • Landscaping for Good Bugs – Dan Nortman, Extension Agent, York/Poquoson
  • Create a Living Flower Arrangement with Layers of Bulbs ($30 fee) – Brent Heath, Brent and Becky’s Bulbs
  • Landscaping Basics – Helen Janele, Eco-Scapes Design

This popular event is free and open to the public. Seating is limited, so early registration is recommended. Registration materials can be found at www.yorkcounty.gov/vce and more information can be given by calling the York-Poquoson Extension office at 757-890-4940.

Inventory Increases Year-Over-Year for the First Time in Over 2½ Years

As summer’s end nears, the Hampton Roads real estate market remains hot with August yearover-year increases across the board, including residential listings for sale, pending sales and settled sales. For the first time in 31 months the number of residential listings for sale has increased year-overyear. There were 0.85% more residential homes listed for sale in August 2013 than there were in August 2012. The Hampton Roads market hasn’t seen an increase in this segment of the market since January 2011. Of the region’s seven major cities (Chesapeake, Hampton, Newport News, Norfolk, Portsmouth, Suffolk, Virginia Beach) Norfolk and Suffolk saw the largest increases at 8.55% and 4.6% respectively, while Newport News and Chesapeake each decreased 7.04% and 5.20%. Residential pending sales exhibited a positive trend, increasing 9.09% year-over-year. Suffolk and Portsmouth experienced the largest increases at 30.77% and 27.08% respectively, while Hampton and Newport News dropped 2.9% and 2.7%. Residential settled sales continue to increase year-over-year and rose 6.81% when compared to August of last year. Norfolk and Virginia Beach saw the most significant increases at 15% and 14.23%. Newport News and Chesapeake were the only two major cities not to experience year-over-year increases, instead declining 24.39% and 5.52% respectively. The residential median sales price for the region is currently $218,450, up 4.75% when compared to August 2012’s median sales price of $208,535. The distressed market, homes that are either short sales or foreclosures, showed slight improvements. Though up a slight .05% from the previous month, distressed properties made up just 22.08% of the total number of residential listings for sale in August 2013, which is 2.66% less than the same period of time last year. On the sales side, distressed properties accounted for 20.98% of all residential settled sales, up .45% from last month, but still down 3.42% year-over-year.

August 2013 Highlights

Listings 
Residential active listings increased, 0.75% year-over-year, to 11,347 (August 2013) from 11,263 (August 2012). 
Under Contract (Pending) Residential Sales
Total residential under contract sales increased by 9.09% when compared to August 2012 (2,041 vs. 1,871). 
Sales 
Total property sales and total residential sales increased when compared to August 2012 showing increases of 
7.96% and 6.81% respectively. 
Inventory 
There is currently 6.51 months’ supply of inventory of residential homes on the market in the Hampton Roads area, 
a decrease from last month (6.56) and down 7.53% from August last year when it was 7.04 months.

* Total Property statistics include all property types (Residential, Commercial, Duplex, Apartment and Land & Farms), resale and new construction.

* Months’ Supply Inventory estimates the number of months it will take to deplete current active inventory based on the prior 12 months average sales activity.

**This information was provided by REIN Press release 8/13.  These statistics are based solely on listings entered into the Real Estate Information Network by REIN broker members. The geographical area includes southeastern Virginia (Norfolk, Virginia Beach, Chesapeake, Portsmouth, Suffolk, Franklin, Smithfield, Isle of Wight, Hampton, Newport News, York County and Poquoson) to Williamsburg, James City County, Gloucester, Middlesex, Virginia’s Eastern Shore and northeastern North Carolina. Reports include all property types: Attached and Detached Residential, Duplex, Apartments, Commercial, and Land & Farms.

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Psst….    .I’m a real estate agent.

This post was authored by local resident and REALTOR, John Womeldorf. John is known around town as Mr. Williamsburg, for both his extensive knowledge of the Williamsburg/ Hampton Roads area and his expertise in the local real estate market.

I can help you access all the information you will need about choosing a neighborhood and buying a home in New Kent, Gloucester, Newport News, Hampton, York County, Smithfield, Williamsburg, Poquoson or the greater Hampton Roads area, including area information on schools, local government, shopping, activities for the children and more! Whether you have made a decision to relocate, retire or are just considering a move to Williamsburg or Hampton Roads VA, let me help make your transition or PCS to the  area a smooth and enjoyable one!

Hampton Roads is a transient community due to the large population of military members in the area. I have a unique perspective on relocation and have helped many families move in and out of the area. I understand the kind of support team it takes to make a smooth transition.

Area Orientations

Complete tours can be scheduled to help you familiarize yourself with Williamsburg and Hampton Roads neighborhoods, home prices, shopping centers, military bases, recreational facilities, public & private schools and transportation systems. My orientation will provide you with awareness of aircraft noise & accident potential zones, flood zones, major traffic patterns and commute times to your job.

You can search homes for sale , active adult communities, 55+ communities, condos and townhomes, foreclosures/ REO,  land, building lots, commercial property  in Williamsburg, Yorktown, New Kent, Gloucester, Poquoson as well as the surrounding areas of Hampton Roads, Virginia

You can reach me by phone at 757-254-8136 or email John@MrWilliamsburg.com

I look forward to serving your real estate needs!

Best,

John

Busch Gardens Pink Ribbon Merchandise

Busch Gardens Pink Ribbon Merchandise will be available at Festhaus Gifts and Tweedside Gifts®. Active, annual Pass Members can also purchase a Pink Ribbon hard-stock Pass card for $10* at Guest Relations. 

All profits from the sale of the Pink Ribbon merchandise will be donated to support breast cancer research. Thanks to the American Cancer Society and dramatic improvements in cancer research, treatment and early detection, millions of women are surviving breast cancer today.

Howl-O-Scream returns to Williamsburg

 

Sept. 13 – Oct. 27 (Fri., Sat. & Sun) Busch Gardens® is full of fall family fun during the day, but the evenings turn frightful with Howl-O-Scream®, the park’s annual horror fest. With the introduction of four Terror-tories™, transformed lands where spirits and fiends walk amongst the living, Busch Gardens has introduced a whole new immersive aspect to Howl-O-Scream. 

Cut Throat Cove™ joins the lineup of haunted houses that offer frightening surprises at every turn. Visit the Open CASKet™ bar, Inoculation Station, or new bars Demon Drinks and Pirate Baarrrgh™ for drinks that will make your blood run cold. Howl-O-Scream begins Sept. 13 and continues to terrify weekends through Oct. 27. 

Howl-O-Scream® features several themed dining experiences, including the all-new interactive Blood Banquet™ surrounded by Count Vlad and a host of paranormal characters for a truly otherworldly eating experience. 

Or experiment with the surgeon, his assistant and their kooky monster at Fright Feast™. The food and the energy are truly electrifying in this live-action atmosphere. 

BUSCH GARDENS® Announced whats going to be NEW for the upcoming Season

Peace, love and happiness filled Das Festhaus® at Busch Gardens® Saturday morning at the park’s annual Pass Member Appreciation Weekend kickoff. Pass Members who attended the event were the first to hear about a new Christmas Town™ Pass add-on offer, Howl-O-Scream® and Christmas Town details, as well as a new British rock-n-roll show debuting next year in the park’s Globe Theatre.
The exclusive event featured details about a special Christmas Town Pass available as an add-on for active Annual Pass Members that provides unlimited admission to Christmas Town for the 2013 season. The $30 pass add-on is the same price as a Christmas Town Single-Day Ticket and Pass Members retain their membership benefits, including free parking and in-park discounts.For a limited time, pass members can purchase the Christmas Town Pass add-on for $25. Pass members can visit http://www.bgwpass.com and log in to their Pass Member account for complete details. Christmas Town fans without an Annual Pass can visit buschgardens.com/va to become a pass member and then take advantage of this pass-member exclusive offer.

Busch Gardens, known for high-caliber productions like Celtic Fyre® is raising the bar again in 2014 with the debut of London Rocks™. Guests will embark on a musical journey that explores the roots of rock-n-roll and transforms Busch Gardens’ Globe Theatre into a rousing 25-minute live action and multi-media rock spectacular. The musical revue explores the powerful role that music plays in people’s lives.

Long before 2014’s British invasion, guests this fall will experience London’s more sinister past when Howl-O-Scream opens Sept. 13 and Busch Gardens’ England becomes Ripper Row®, one of four new Terror-tories™. France, Italy, Germany and England are being transformed into over-the-top thematic experiences that transport guests to another time and place full of startles and frights.  Chart a course through the haunted waters in Italy, flee the flames of burning France, avoid becoming a vampire’s dinner in Germany or hunt for Jack the Ripper in London’s East End. In these immersive experiences, guests are the main characters whose fates are linked to the creatures roaming through the “Dark Side of the Gardens.”

Leave the frights behind this Christmas season and visit Busch Gardens starting Nov. 22 when it transforms into a winter wonderland during this most wonderful time of the year. Christmas Town is opening one week earlier this year to meet the demand for this popular family tradition.  Visit Santa at his North Pole workshop and begin a Christmas Town tradition that is warm as apple pie, then take a step into the not-so-distant-past at Holiday Hills™ where mid-twentieth century Christmas celebrations come to life. Sip some of Busch Gardens’ signature peppermint fudge hot chocolate and let the warmth of the season take over.

For more information feel free to visit :Busch Gardens, www.buschgardens.com/va

 

 

 

SETTLEMENT ON FORD’S COLONY DRIVE

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Terms of a negotiated settlement have been agreed to in principle to resolve issues concerning Ford’s Colony Drive (FCD). Final agreements are being written to define detailed elements of the solution, and it is anticipated that a settlement agreement, along with other related agreements, will be executed on September 12, 2013. The FCHOA Board of Directors and representatives of Realtec are pleased with the settlement.

Here is a summary of the proposed settlement: the FCHOA and RCS will renew the management agreement at a reduced rate for the management fee until 2019; Realtec will assign certain marketing fees to the FCHOA; the membership will vote on accepting FCD, then Realtec will transfer FCD to the FCHOA; and there will be a shared maintenance agreement to cover future maintenance and repairs for FCD. Funding for the necessary immediate repaving of FCD and related landscaping improvements in 2014 will come from a special assessment of association members that will be recouped by savings over the life of the management contract. For additional information and details, see the October TOC, attend one of the town hall meetings on October 7th or 12th, and review the voting material that will come with your 4th quarter assessment notice. More details to follow.

This information was provided by:  https://www.facebook.com/FordsColonyLiving/posts/648192581871916:0

Historic Homes Across Virginia to Open Free to the Public September 14-15

RICHMOND – In celebration of the Executive Mansion’s 200th Anniversary, Governor Bob McDonnell and First Lady Maureen McDonnell designated 2013 the “Year of the Historic Home.” As a part of that effort, exclusively during the weekend of September 14 and 15, 2013, many of Virginia’s renowned historic homes and museums will be open admission-free to the public. Visitors just need to click HERE to print their ‘passport’ for free admission to the participating sites.

 

            “We are thrilled with the excitement surrounding the Year of the Historic Home,” said First Lady Maureen McDonnell. “The spring success of the Historic Home Promotional Weekend in Richmond came as a pleasant surprise and we are looking forward to promoting this initiative in September across the Commonwealth. We encourage you to print your passport and visit these historic sites, which have been home to many of America’s Founding Fathers, U.S. presidents, and many other significant figures.”

 

            There are over 120 sites across Virginia classified as Historic Homes that span from pre-Colonial times through the Modern era, all of which provide an abundance of cultural, historical, and architectural information and promote an understanding of, as well as an interest in, Virginia’s story.

 

            To further promote the Year of the Historic Home effort, in the spring of 2013, seven historic homes across Richmond came together in a collaborative effort to open their doors admission-free to the public for an entire weekend to “Time Travel through Virginia History.” Because of the successes and benefits experienced from the spring promotional weekend, over 50 homes throughout Virginia are coming together to offer free access to the public for the weekend of September 14 and 15. 

 

            A list of the participating homes follows. For specific details of each home, as well as their hours of operation on September 14 and 15, please visit the Virginia Historic Home website athttp://www.historicalhomes.virginia.gov/. Click on the “time travelers” link while on the site and print your passport in order to be granted free admission.