Spring Break in Richmond and Doswell

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If you’re looking for something to do for spring break and want to stay in Richmond or take a side trip to Doswell, you’ll find plenty of things including night life. Before you head out, especially if you decide to head to Doswell, be sure to have your vehicle serviced at Richmond Ford – or pick up your new vehicle before you head out.

Spring Break Week at Maymont

Spend the week at the Maymont visiting indoor exhibits including the Maymont Mansion and Nature Center. Hours are Monday, April 6, 2015 through Friday, April 10, 2015 from 10:00 a.m. until 5:00 p.m. You’ll find something fun for the entire family during spring break week. The Maymont is located at 2201 Shields Lake Drive, Richmond, Virginia. Most exhibits require advance registration so check the website or call before you show up. For more information visit maymont.org or call (804) 358-7166, ext. 310. Admission fees vary per activity.

Spring Break at Kings Dominion

Visit the Kings Dominion theme park for a little excitement during the spring break. The park is located at 16000 Theme Park Way, Doswell, Virginia and is open during spring break from April 6, 2015 through April 10, 2015. For more information visit kingsdominion.com or call (804) 876-5000. Visit the website for admission prices.

A Million Blooms

Visit Lewis Ginter Botanical Garden starting April 1, 2015 from 9:00 a.m. until 5:00 p.m. to see the blooms at one of the best botanical gardens in the United States. Exhibits include 19th French-inspired floral arrangements, a cherry tree walk and butterflies. The gardens are located at 1800 Lakeside Avenue, Richmond, Virginia. For more information, call (804) 262-9887 or visit lewisginter.org. Regular Garden admission applies during spring break.

Visit Richmond Ford

Be sure to call Richmond Ford to set up a service or maintenance appointment; or if you are in the market for a new vehicle, stop by to test drive a coupe, sedan, truck or SUV. Ask your salesperson about any specials we may be running when you come in, especially if you are undecided on your vehicle choice.

Winter Road Trip Destinations

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If you are planning on a road trip in the winter, where you go depends on what kind of weather you want to visit. If you want warm weather and are considering Florida, be sure to watch the weather channel as it can get pretty cold if your destination is middle Florida or north Florida. While it can get cold in the south Florida and the Keys, you have a better chance of beach weather in those destinations. Be sure to visit Richmond Ford before you leave on long road trips to have your vehicle checked and serviced if necessary.

Norman Rockwell Country

If you prefer to stay in the colder climates, take a road trip to Ellicottville off I-80 in New York. Ellicottville is home of HoliMont, a private ski resort – the largest one in North America. From there, ride south on U.S. 219 along the Allegany State Park to go ice skating, sledding or cross-country skiing at Relais & Chateau Lodge at Glendorn. You can also go ice fishing for walleye then warm up in front of one of 43 fireplaces in the Lodge.

Vermont and New Hampshire

Visit Jackson, New Hampshire in the White Mountains for some great pictures of red covered bridges and over 154,000 cross-country ski trails. Stop in Burlington, Vermont for some great coffee at the Maglianero Cafe, then head up to Montpelier through the White Mountain National Forest. Visit Bretton Woods for some downhill skiing and be sure to stop at the Christmas Farm Inn and Spa for some great relaxation and more cross-country skiing.

Minnesota and Wisconsin

If you have a ton of time or don’t mind flying to take a road trip, head out to Duluth to start a 240-mile loop. Start out on state route 13, making sure you stop at Apostle Islands National Lakeshore to see the ice caves, spend the night at the Old Rittenhouse Inn in Bayfield, and then head out on U.S. 63 for some Nordic skiing in Hayward at the American Birkebeiner trail system. Head back to Duluth to catch your flight home – or drive that long distance back to Virginia.

Stop by Richmond Ford

Before you head out, whether you are heading north, south or west, be sure to have your vehicle serviced at Richmond Ford – especially if you are heading north or west into the cold.

Top Places to Travel in Virginia in 2015

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Once you have your vehicle serviced at Richmond Ford – or you pick up a new vehicle if you want to upgrade – you’re ready to start planning trips throughout the state. Whether you decide to take a weekend trip or head out on your vacation, visit some of these top places to travel in Virginia in 2015.

Arlington National Cemetery

This historic landmark sees three million visitors every year. Many of them have family members buried in the cemetery. You can visit too, just to remember those who fought for your freedom. The cemetery has a Welcome Center close to the entrance gate so you can pick up maps, learn more about the cemetery, view exhibits and visit the bookstore. For more information, visit arlingtoncemetery.mil.

Colonial Williamsburg

If you are a history buff, you’ll love Colonial Williamsburg. This living history museum/city has tons of historic attractions and art museums. And, if you’re in the mood for a round of golf, play the golf course. For those who love shopping and dining, you won’t be disappointed.

The Natural Bridge

This National Historic Landmark is one of the best places to catch pictures. It’s located in the Shenandoah Valley and close to the Blue Ridge Parkway. Stay at the family-friendly Historic Hotel and take a week to explore the area and the Blue Ridge Parkway. For more information, visit naturalbridgeva.com.

Busch Gardens

For those who prefer tons of excitement or need something to do to keep the kids occupied on a long weekend, visit Busch Gardens, located about 3 miles east of Williamsburg. In addition to water rides, roller coasters, simulators and other fun rides, you’ll have plenty of places for shopping and dining.

Manassas National Battlefield Park

If you want to walk tons of trails and learn about the Civil War, visit the 5000-acre Manassas National Battlefield Park. Be sure to stop by the Henry Hills Visitor Center for an orientation film, and the museum to see some of the artifacts, uniforms and weapons of the Civil War. For more information, visit nps.gov.mana.

Stop by Richmond Ford

Before you head out on vacation or a long weekend, visit Richmond Ford to have your vehicle serviced or to upgrade to a newer vehicle. Be sure to ask your salesperson about any finance or lease specials we may be running.

Getting Your Car Road Trip Ready

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Before you head out on a road trip, you should always make sure your vehicle is road-worthy, no matter how new it might be. This means keeping up with the manufacturer’s recommended service and performing equipment checks at the appropriate times – and sometimes more often.

Equipment Check

Richmond Ford will check your vehicle for potential issues before you head out on a road trip. Even though you may have just checked your tires and other equipment on your vehicle a couple of months ago, it’s always a good idea to do it just before a long road trip. Too many things could happen between the time you last checked your vehicle over and the day you leave on your road trip.

Tires

Have the service department check your tires for uneven wear, low tread and proper air pressure. If you notice a vibration in the steering wheel, the tires may need balancing or you could have a separated tire. Take note of what speed you feel the vibration and when it goes away – that will help tell the service techs whether they should be looking at a balancing issue or a separated tire.

If you feel any pulling, have the techs check the alignment. Your vehicle should go straight down the road without constantly pulling to one side or the other.

Brakes

Even if you haven’t heard your brakes squeaking, have them checked. You don’t want to get 1,500 miles away and have them start squeaking as you’d have to replace them on the road. It’s better to replace the brakes at your trusted dealership rather than take a chance on an unknown shop or unknown dealership.

Belts and Hoses

Belts and hoses don’t seem like a lot since they are rather inexpensive to replace. However, they can and will leave you stranded in the middle of nowhere if they break. And, if the water pump belt breaks, it could further damage your engine by overheating it – the same as a broken hose would.

Furthermore, the belt or belts, if you have more than one, often run more than one accessory. If the belt that runs the power steering breaks, your arms are not going to be happy. And if the belt that runs the air compressor breaks and it’s 90 degrees out, you’re going to hear about that from the family.

Stop by Richmond Ford

Stop by Richmond Ford to have your vehicle thoroughly checked by our service department before you head out on a road trip, even if it’s a short 200-mile trip.

Virginia Events in September

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If you just bought or leased a new vehicle from Richmond Ford or plan to before the end of September, you’ll be ready to take some fall trips to break in your new car, SUV or truck. Virginia has events throughout the month, including festivals and other celebrations; don’t miss out on the fun.

If you’re a Johnny Cash fan, be sure to visit the Barter Theatre Main Stage, 127 W. Main Street, Abingdon, Virginia, 24210 to see Ring of Fire: The Music of Johnny Cash. The show runs until September 6, 2014. Take a journey through Cash’s life via his music. For more information, contact the theatre box office at (276) 628-3991 or visit bartertheatre.com.

Visit the Franklin County Agricultural Fair at the Franklin County Recreation Park, 2150 Sontag Road, Rocky Mount, Virginia, 24151 from September 10, 2014 through September 13, 2014. The fair features live entertainment, student SkillsUSA competitions, a livestock show, merchandise vendors, food and more. For more information about the fair, visit fcagfair.com or call (540) 483-3040.

Can’t get your fill of good music? Visit The Crooked Road Music Festival at the Heartwood Artisan Center, One Heartwood Circle, Abingdon, Virginia, 24210. The festival is devoted to telling the story of The Crooked Road: Virginia’s Heritage Music Trail. There will be a Thursday Night Jam at the Artisan Center, a youth concert on Friday, the festival on Saturday and a gospel brunch on Sunday – all at the Artisan Center. The festival runs from Thursday, September 25, 2014 through September 28, 2014. For more information, call (800) 435-3440 or visit abingdon-crookedroadmusicfest.com.

You can also enjoy some of the wine festivals in Virginia, including the South Hill Wine Festival at Centennial Park, Danville Street, South Hill, Viriginia, 23970. The festival will feature wineries from the area, food, artists, music and more. The festival runs from noon until 5:00 p.m. on Saturday, September 27, 2014. For more information visit southhillrotaryclub.org or call (434) 447-4547. Admission is $20 if you buy tickets in advance and $25 if you buy the tickets at the gate.

Before you head out, be sure to get your Ford serviced at Richmond Ford or stop by to pick out your new for truck, SUV or car. Be sure to ask your salesperson about sales on select models.

Top Road Trip Desinations in Virginia

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While summer is almost over, that doesn’t mean the road trips have to end. Stop by Richmond Ford to get your car serviced before a new round of late summer and early fall road trips start up. One of the things that you just have to do – especially if you’ve never done it – is to take a trip up the Blue Ridge Parkway to catch the fall colors.

October is the peak visiting month for the Blue Ridge Parkway as the leaves are in full color. You’ll see orange sassafras, scarlet sourwoods and golden poplars – all backed by green conifers. The actual viewing season starts in late September – this is when the dogwood, black gum and sourwood turn red. Maples also turn red a bit later. Toward the end of October, the oaks turn brown or red.

Start off in early October in Shenandoah National Park near Waynesboro, Virginia for the best view. Head south along the Parkway for the best views. If you have the time, drive all 469 miles of the Parkway into the Great Smoky Mountains National Park in Cherokee, North Carolina.

Waynesboro hosts the Virginia Fall Foliage Festival, right at the start of the Parkway, during the first two weekends in October. Check out the arts and crafts and explore Main Street and the historic district while you are there.

Head over to Linville Falls Visitor Center, located off US 221 between Linville and Marion. Hike up to the waterfalls to watch them drop 2,000 feet into the Linville Gorge. Pictures of the falls with colorful foliage would make a perfect postcard picture.

Travel the Parkway to Mabry Mill at milepost 176.2 to see the most photographed site on the Parkway. Visit the sawmill, the gristmill and the blacksmith shop. If you keep going, stop at Little Switzerland at milepost 334 for shops and resorts with a Swiss theme. The scenery looks like something right out of Switzerland.

At milepost 382, stop to visit the Linville Caverns. Hike 2,000 feet underground and into the caverns. And, be sure to stop in Asheville to see the childhood home of Thomas Wolfe. While you’re there, be sure to visit the Biltmore Estate.

Back up in Virginia, turn off the Parkway onto Route 56 to visit the McCormick Farm in Steeles Tavern. Visit the museum, gristmill and blacksmith show in the town.

Before you head out, be sure your vehicle has been serviced at Richmond Ford – or if you are in the market for a new vehicle, pick up the new Ford for your trip.

Discover Virginia in Your Richmond Ford

After you buy or lease your new Ford or get your current vehicle serviced at Richmond Ford, it’s time to head out for some Virginia fun. The state is full of different landscapes for sightseeing, including mountains for hiking. Before the cold hits, head out in your new vehicle for some camping and hiking.

Drive up the Appalachian Trail to Mount Rogers, the highest point in Virginia. Mount Rogers is 5,729 feet above sea level. The actual hike begins at Elk Garden Gap and is 9 miles round trip. The trail you are looking for is the white blazed AT trail heading north.

If you really want to do some hardcore hiking or biking – or even horseback riding – take the Virginia Creeper Trail. Mile 0 is in Abingdon. You can also start in Alvarado (mile 8.5), Damascus (mile 15.5), Creek Junction (mile 25), and Whitetop Station (mile 32.3). The entire trail is 34.3 miles long and ends on Whitetop Mountain.

If you want a great valley photo op, take the Mountain Farm Trail to Humpback Rocks at mile marker 5.8 on the Blue Ridge Parkway. The trail also has a 19th century interpretive farm. If you hike out to the rocks, you’ll get one of the best views of the Shenandoah Valley.

If you are looking for waterfall pictures, hike the Whiteoak Canyon trail. It’s one of the more popular trails because it has six waterfalls. The falls range from 35 feet to 86 feet. Each one also has a swimming hole, so be sure to bring swimwear. You can park your new Ford off of Route 600 at the Boundary Trailhead. You can also access the trail from Skyline Drive at mile marker 42.6.

If you want to hike but are not into doing a strenuous hike, then choose Cold Mountain Loop. This is a moderate 5.7-mile loop that starts on Rt. 755/Wiggins Spring Road at Hog Camp Gap. The trail head is about a half mile past Hog Camp Gap.

Because some of these places are way out of the way, you’ll want to be sure your Ford is running perfectly – or have a brand new vehicle. Stop by Richmond Ford today to test drive a truck, sedan, coupe or SUV.

Top Road Trip Destinations

Summer is the perfect time for a road trip – the kids are out of school and many people take their vacations in June and July. One of the things you should do before you head out is to bring your vehicle to Richmond Ford to have it checked for the trip. If you’re considering a new vehicle, pick it up before the trip so you can enjoy that new car smell.

Once you have your vehicle serviced or you pick up your new vehicle, it’s time to decide where you want to go. If you have a couple of weeks, you might consider heading up to New England. You can visit the beaches in Rhode Island, Connecticut, Massachusetts and New Hampshire. If you head into Maine, you can visit more beaches and tons of fishing villages. Plus the area, including Vermont, is full of historical sites to visit. Be sure to climb Mt. Washington if you do visit – and take the Cog train up to the top for a spectacular view.

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You just might see Dolly Parton at Dollywood if you visit on your next trip!

If you head toward the south and west, you can visit the Carolinas and Tennessee. The Carolinas have excellent beaches including Myrtle Beach. Once you head south, turn west to get into the Blue Ridge Mountains and the Appalachian Mountains. Be sure to drive the Blue Ridge Parkway, including Little Switzerland. Going further west, you can visit Dollywood, Sevierville, Knoxville, Chattanooga and Nashville – and everything in between. Tennessee has tons of parks that allow camping, tons of lakes for fishing and excellent scenery.

Be sure to visit the Cumberland Caverns on the Cumberland Plateau, Dale Hollow Lake near the Kentucky border and Music Row in Nashville.

As always, before you head out, be sure to have your vehicle thoroughly checked at Richmond Ford, especially if you decide on a long road trip. If you plan on purchasing a new vehicle or leasing a new vehicle before you go, be sure to ask your salesperson about any specials that we might be running.

Photo by Kris Harris King via Wikimedia Commons

Summer Fun in Virginia

It’s just about summer and that means it’s time to start planning some summer fun. Part of planning for fun is making sure your vehicle is up to date on maintenance – or maybe this is the year you decided to get a new vehicle. If you’re keeping your vehicle, stop by Richmond Ford to make a service appointment for maintenance. If you decided it’s time for a new vehicle, stop by the dealership to test drive one or three vehicles.

Once service has been completed, including checking the oil, power steering fluid, transmission fluid (if applicable), brakes, brake fluid, antifreeze, belts and hoses, you’re ready to head out on the road! If you’re buying or leasing a new vehicle, you’ll want to line up some places to go and things to do just so you can enjoy that new car smell.

Stop by the 2014 Virginia Burlesque & Sideshow Festival on Saturday, May 31, 2014 at Richmond Center Stage, 600 E. Grace St., #400, Richmond, Virginia. This is the second year for the show; and it celebrates burlesque and vaudeville revival in America. You’ll enjoy quality shows and learning opportunities with three days of shows, classes, networking and more. Tickets are available at absfest.com and run from $25 to $75.

Also on Saturday, May 31, 2014, Richmond Prep is holding the Richmond Prep 2014 Spring Bazaar, starting at 2:00 p.m. at 304 N. Sheppard Street, Richmond, Virginia. Help the school raise funds and celebrate the school year. You’ll enjoy activities, a vendor market, food, a silent auction, a fashion show and musical performances. You can get tickets for the fashion show from a Richmond Prep parent or through EventBrite. The vendor market and other activities are free to the public.

Saturday, May 31, 2014 at 7:00 p.m. RVA Has Talent Finals will be held at the Hippodrome Theater, 528 N. 2nd Street, Richmond, Virginia. Tickets are available at comedianmicahwhite.ticketleap.com/rva-has-talent-finals-2/.

Enjoy these upcoming events and more when you know your vehicle is running right or when your vehicle is brand new. Richmond Ford has something for everyone, from sports cars and coupes to pickup trucks and SUVs.

Hit the Road!

Whether you just bought a new Ford from Richmond Ford, have an older model, or are in the market for a new vehicle, you’ll want to jump in and enjoy some local trips that are close to home. Often, people have no idea what is right in their back yards or take area attractions and events for granted. Before it gets too hot, jump in your Ford, roll down the windows and take a drive to one of these local places.

The James River is located at 22nd Street and Riverside Drive, Richmond, 23223. You’ll find walking trails and some wild life. You can walk to the Wetlands and the Pony Pasture sections of the river. Be sure to bring your camera as you’ll get some excellent views of the rapids, kayakers and birds. Cross the pedestrian bridge to Belle Isle or take the Canal Walk to Brown’s Island. Be sure to bring plenty of drinking water with you.

The Canal Walk will take you along the canal where you will see some traces of the area’s rich history including crumbling walls and some plaques. Don’t forget to head over to Rocketts Landing if you cross to Brown’s Island. Guides will tell you about the path to the broken bridge, which retraces the three days surrounding the fall of Richmond during the spring of 1865. You’ll also hear about Lincoln’s visit to the area.

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Servicing your vehicle goes a long way in getting tons of miles on it without any major issues. Visit our web site to schedule your service appointment today.

Be sure to visit the Richmond National Battlefield Park, located at 3215 E. Broad Street in Richmond. You’ll see the Cold Harbor site, deer, turkey, and of course, tons of history about Richmond. If you look close enough, you can see the remains of Confederate and Union trenches in the fields and ridges.

As always, before you head out, even if your drive is short, be sure your vehicle has been properly maintained and that all the fluids are topped off. Check everything if you haven’t checked it in a couple of months. You can also stop by Richmond Ford to have our experienced service technicians look over your Ford to make sure it doesn’t need anything.

Top Image by Nannette Turner via Flickr Creative Commons