Inside this Issue

February/March 2015

Visions of Spring
Historic Garden Week in Virginia

Photographs by Meg Runion


This spring, visitors will step through the gates of more than 250 of Virginia’s most beautiful gardens, homes, and historic landmarks during “America’s Largest Open House,” April 18 through 25. Three dozen Historic Garden Week tours present a rich mosaic of some of the country’s finest properties at the peak of Virginia’s springtime color. Sponsored by The Garden Club of Virginia, this 8-day statewide event benefits the restoration of important historic grounds and gardens throughout the state.

Local events are scheduled from the Atlantic Ocean to the Allegheny Mountains and will span the centuries from the early seventeenth through the early twenty-first. albemarle welcomes you to our surrounding community’s local homes and gardens and encourages you to explore the multitude of unforgettable gardens at the peak of Virginia’s springtime color.




















A Farm with a view
A Restoration at Chestnut Ridge Farm Takes Advantage of Its Surroundings

By Sarah Crain
Photographs by Jim Rounsevell


Anyone lucky enough to live in the Blue Ridge Mountain area undoubtedly understands the desire to take advantage of the landscape, never to miss a fresh snowfall, the spectacular fall foliage, or the newest blossoms of spring.

Bill and Monique Pritchard, the owners of Chestnut Ridge Farm, wanted to do just that—appreciate the scenery around them as much as possible. Chestnut Ridge Farm is a magnificent country property on 40 acres in Western Albemarle. The land rolls beautifully along the knoll from where the house sits and has wonderful views of the mountains to the northwest.

The previous owner, a retired doctor, had planted a large Chinese chestnut orchard, for which the property was appropriately named. Tending and harvesting the trees was a hobby that he enjoyed for many years. Eventually, he was ready to move on, and that was when the Pritchards discovered Chestnut Ridge Farm.

Bill and Monique Pritchard fell in love with the property’s potential and purchased the farm in 2006 with plans to renovate. The original house was built in 1986. They kept most of the chestnut trees, clearing only those closest to the house that blocked the scenery.



Devils Backbone Crowned 2014 Great American Beer Festival Mid-Size Brewery of the Year


In 1990, Steven Crandall went skiing in northern Italy, expecting an average skiing trip. While there, Crandall fell in love with the taste of a Weihenstephan beer he tried in a bar, and returned from his trip with much more than the experience of skiing in the Italian mountains—he came back with an inspiration. An owner of a construction company, Crandall had never planned on opening a brewery, but when he returned from his trip, he was determined to recreate the incredible beer that he had tried in that small Italian bar.

Crandall bought 100 acres of land in the heart of Nelson County, where he planned to construct and run his brewery. Once he had the space, there were several other pieces that needed to come into place in order to make his dream a reality. Crandall was fortunate to locate a Ziemann-Miyake 10HL 4-Vessel Decoction/Infusion Brewery, which he purchased from a failed brewpub in Tokyo. Jason Oliver, from Washington, DC, was brought in as the head brewer and Crandall’s right-hand man. Oliver was thrilled at the prospect of starting something from the ground up, and was particularly excited about the unique equipment that Crandall had purchased, which would allow for much more creativity in the beer-making process.





















Last Laugh
If I Had a Hammer…
By Louise B. Parsley


Twenty years ago, The Bob and I built our home. Actually, I managed the construction. The Bob managed not to throw a clot, his body into oncoming traffic or on the mercy of the court for assaulting the contractor with a T-square. We lied to our banker, hired a contractor whose car was a bigger clunker than our woody minivan and an architect who wasn’t exactly, um, certified. He was twelve.

We still live in—and love—that house. I cherish the memories we created as a family and loved every minute of building it.

Flash forward two decades—we are building a retreat on the North Fork of the Guadalupe River. I convinced the same architect (now looking almost 20) to design a small, comfy cottage. A place we could retire, a hangout for my kids and, someday, their kids—a place to create new memories. Build it and they will procreate, I thought.

The new house needed to complement the still-standing original yellow house comprised of stone, more stone, and daddy longlegs—just like every other house up and down the river. Architecture does not change on the North Fork. More to the point, change does not happen on the North Fork.









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albemarle magazine, an affiliate member of the Charlottesville Area Association of REALTORS® (CAAR), is pleased to support our area’s REALTORS® in promoting this beautiful and unique part of the country. Living in Jefferson’s Virginia offers the best of all possible worlds, from homes and estates, to farms and commercial properties. “Who’s Who of REALTORS® in albemarle magazine” is published twice yearly, appearing in the April/May and October/November issues. To become a member of “Who’s Who” and begin your campaign with the April/May 2015 issue call 434-817-2010 ext. 124 by February 16, 2015.



ph: 434-817-2000 fax: 434-817-2020 e-mail:info@albemarlemagazine.com

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