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Autumn at the MSV

“When is the best time to visit the garden?” This is a question Director of Gardens Perry Mathewes gets frequently. The short answer is “Any time we are open.” Of course, a longer more complex answer requires you to pull up a chair for this read.

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Finding Fleming Jordan: A Free Black Barber in the Shenandoah Valley

One of the many stories told in the new exhibition, Contributions: African Americans in the Shenandoah Valley, is that of free Blacks living in the region. Including those who were either born free or achieved their freedom through manumission (release from enslavement), free blacks in Virginia numbered approximately 58,000 people just before the Civil War … Continued

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The Moon and the MSV

This past Full Moon on November 19, we took a group out on the Trails to experience the nighttime environment for the second time since opening the Trails to the public. The moon was stunning, if tough to capture on a cell phone camera. When you think about a Full Moon, what comes to mind? … Continued

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National Geographic at the MSV

Was there ever a time in your life when you saw the yellow spine of a National Geographic magazine and didn’t feel even the slightest curiosity about what was inside its pages? I still remember the anticipation I would feel as a small child waiting for my dad to unwrap a new issue so I … Continued

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Animals at the MSV

By Perry Mathewes, Deputy Director, Museum Operations and Director of Gardens One of the great things about working in the MSV Gardens is that you get to spend lots of time around beautiful plants and nature. Yes, there is the drudgery of weeding, mulching and other mundane tasks, but there are also sublime moments as … Continued

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And the Award Goes To…Education and Rewards of Merit in the Shenandoah Valley

As Covid-19 vaccines became more readily available this spring and summer, Virginia school officials began developing strategies to restore full-time, in-person learning. Local and regional schoolteachers now face the important but unenviable task of reintroducing students to classroom settings after those students spent over a year in front of computer and tablet screens. To make … Continued

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