Thanks to everyone who came out to celebrate with us last Saturday. Thanks to the musicians who entertained us all day. Thanks to the partner organizations who shared their passion. Thanks to all the volunteers at the event and to the planning committee. Thanks to the sponsors who made it all possible.
So, just thanks.
We're still tallying up all those survey sheets (thanks to those of you who handed them out and to those of you who filled them in), but it's already looking as though we had at least 1,000 people celebrating the day with us.
The Town of Round Hill is just getting started as an A.T. Community. Besides this site, we hope you'll check out our Round Hill Outdoors site, where we post events and news.
(If you didn't make it, here's a peek of what went on. Thanks, Erik Burnham, for taking the video.)
We are happy to announce we'll have a native plant nursery joining us at the festival. Seven Bends Nursery of Winchester was founded this year by a pair of friends with a talent for growing plants and a passion for protecting the environment. You can find them at plant fairs and events like ours across the region.
Here's an introduction to Seven Bends, courtesy of their website:
At Seven Bends, we believe that the act of gardening reminds us of our dependence on a healthy planet. Gardening teaches us patience and care and connects us more deeply to the environment around us.
Seven Bends Nursery is committed to providing lovingly curated, high quality native plant material, herbs, and food starts that support the creation of ecologically friendly landscapes. Our plants are chosen for both their beauty and for their role is supporting the wildlife that keeps our minds peaceful and our landscapes healthy and beautiful.
We grow an assortment of native perennial flowers, trees, and shrubs important for wildlife within the Shenandoah Valley, Piedmont, and Appalachias. Our native plants are noteworthy for their beauty and resiliency, and support diverse, healthy landscapes. And because these plants are adapted to local regions, they are surprisingly easy to care for!
One dollar, one ticket—and you could win:
Raffle winners will be drawn every half-hour. If you win, you'll pick your prize from the raffle table in the festival's White Blaze tent.
We'll announce winners on stage and post winning numbers at the tent. $1 gets you a chance at $1,000 of prizes. (Or increase your odds, with 6 tickets for $5!)
Thanks to many local businesses, we'll have a table full of silent auction items. Bid on a dining certificate to your favorite restaurant. Get yourself a new tent or a hiking shirt—and know you're supporting this free festival as it celebrates the great outdoors.
Going once, going twice....
A tent, courtesy of REI
A Madison Belle gift certificate
Training sessions, courtesy of Potomac River Running
A gift basket from Delirium Cafe
Classes, courtesy of Jen Stone Yoga
Art work by Michelle Hummel
A shirt by Brag Swag
"The Bluemont Experience" package from Great Country Farms/Dirt Farm Brewing/Bluemont Vineyard
Plus, dining certificates from: Trungo's, Fireworks, SideBar, Dragon Hops Brewing, West End Wine Bar & Pub, Finn Thai Restaurant, More Better Beer Garden, Cocina on Market, Mod Pizza and Tuscarora Mill Restaurant.
And a deluxe gift bag of Round Hill Appalachian Trail Festival merch. Let the bidding begin!
Before 1994, hikers and climbers in Winchester, VA, had to drive miles and miles to find something as basic as a Nalgene water bottle or a carabiner. Thus, Mountain Trails was born. Over its 25-year history, Mountain Trails has established itself as a one-stop shop for all things backpacking, day hiking, rock climbing and travel. Mountain Trails' mission is to help create a safer, more enjoyable wilderness experience.
Garry Green took over the store in 2015, and he opened a second location in downtown Front Royal, VA on Main Street. Next to this shop, Garry helped establish a unique backpacker facility called Basecamp. Thru- and section- hikers can catch a shuttle from the Hwy. 522 A.T. trailhead to the Visitor's Center downtown. From there, it's just two blocks to Basecamp, where they find free laundry facilities, lockers, clean towels and a shower, boot dryer, message board, hikers' box and small lounge dedicated to long-distance hikers. Free laundry detergent is provided, and hikers can borrow loaner clothes while theirs are in the wash.
Though it opened late last year, this year's thru-hikers are the first to take advantage of its amenities. Basecamp is supported by the Front Royal Brewing Company, Mountain Trails Outfitters and the Down Home Comfort Bakery. To get into Basecamp, hikers enter the outer door of the Front Royal Brewery building (122 Main St.) and then go to one of the participating businesses to get a door code.
An entire wall is provided as a "Basecamp Journal." Here, hikers leave messages, trail updates, inspirational quotes and original artwork.
When one of our vendors mentioned he wanted to bring "products with a purpose" to the festival, we wanted to know more. Here, we'll let Daniel Daymude of PERIL tell you what that means:
"We are a group of outdoor enthusiasts who have hiked and traveled throughout the country. We've noticed small things like people leaving trash, cutting through trails in between switchbacks, forgetting safety steps when climbing and practicing other potentially harmful habits we believe could be replaced with safe, conservation-minded habits.
"PERIL shirts serve as a reminder of the dangers and responsibilities we all have when venturing into nature. We promote positive outdoor practices on high-quality, synthetic hiking shirts. Whether it be 'pack in, pack out' or something as simple as 'follow the trail blazes,' we want to be there motivating people to do the right things when they’re outside in nature.
"Having high-quality hiking shirts with important messages for safety and conservationism will hopefully enable people to be outside in comfortable clothing while making a positive impact in places like the A.T., bodies of water, the crag or anywhere in nature. We want to reinforce the concept of 'think global, act local.'"
—Daniel Daymude II, PERIL Adventure Wear
When Thaddeus Lamar graduated from college, he decided to put one foot in front of the other—for 2,185 miles. Lamar set out to thru-hike the Appalachian National Scenic Trail, and he brought along his camera. More than 100 fellow hikers shared their stories of adventure, hardship and camaraderie with Thad "No Pants" Lamar. What emerged was a cinematic portrait of a priceless American resource and its dedicated community.
The Round Hill Appalachian Trail Festival and B Chord Brewing are proud to present a screening of Lamar's 2019 documentary, "Barbarian Utopia: Encounters on the Appalachian Trail." Lamar's production company, Campfire Productions LLC, has previously screened the film at the Rehobeth Beach Regional Showcase and at Trail Days in Damascus, VA, to great acclaim. The documentary is currently being submitted to film festivals.
Stay after the official hours of the festival to see "Barbarian Utopia." B Chord Brewing will be screening the film at 5:30 p.m. Learn more on the documentary's Facebook page, and view the trailer on YouTube.
Round Hill AT: Join us in bringing together local friends and family to get outside. Let’s discover our amazing backyards — from national treasures like the Appalachian Trail to new local and regional parks.