Monday, June 20, 2022

Chalk the Walk, Virginia Be

On the boardwalk (actually concrete) at Virginia Beach, CHALK THE WALK.  The theme was: Our Cartoon Pals.

Wow what a crowded place.  As well as it being Father's Day weekend it was the Juneteenth holiday weekend.  We went back to the beach on Saturday for the Chalk the Walk.  They had categories from novice to professional.  Looked like they were having a lot of fun!

We found these next to the boardwalk.  I guessed art work and Pat guessed air for a subway system.  Pat's guess was closest.  This is on top of the 16th street stormwater pump station.  It was built in 2001 as part of their hurricane protection. These stacks allow for ventilation of the station and a generator. The stormwater that drains here is pumped 2,000 feet off shore. It can pump 135,000 gallons of water, or approximately 102,000 bath tubs full of water, per minute.

After we checked out the chalk drawings we headed away from the beach searching for Lollys ice cream.  Our waitress yesterday told us they had good ice cream and vegan options (translates to non-dairy for me).  Sorbet is dairy-free, but sometimes I get a hankering for something creamy.  It looked good but there was no no-added-sugar for Pat.  They did have a Pina Colada sorbet, but the only non-dairy ice cream had peanut butter, another no-no for me.  A nice walk and we saw several murals.

Sunday morning we headed to the Cape Henry lighthouse built in 1792 at the mouth of Chesapeake Bay. Virginia Preservation now maintains it. It is the 4th oldest lighthouse in the country. The old lighthouse had problems with shifting and eroding sand so in 1881 the "new" black and white lighthouse replaced it and is still in service. 

Located by the lighthouse is also where the first English settlers landed in 1607 (before the pilgrims) and went on to make a settlement at Jamestown.

The interesting part?  These historic places reside in Fort Story a unique army base.  Because of its challenging and realistic training grounds it is also home to all branches including the Marine Corps, Navy, and Coast Guard.

We , unlike others, had done our research and were prepared.  When we arrived at the gate they took our driver's licenses. An officer walked them just a few feet to where we would turn into the parking lot to board our bus.  Once parked we went to a tent where we exchanged our licenses for a map.  Very Important:  blue lines on that map.  They checked us with a wand and examined my purse.  No backpacks, no pictures of the base, and DO NOT cross the blue lines on the map.  Our bus driver said both uniformed and non-uniformed serviceman patrolled the area.   

What happens if you cross the blue line?  You are arrested by the military and must pay a fine of $2,400.00 PER PERSON!  She said she has witnessed this, once with  family of 8.  On base you face a military court--no leniency. A couple on our bus had to park off base as their 16 year-old did not have an official ID and was not allowed on base.

This is a replica of the cross that was set up by those first arrivals on April 29, 1607.

Francois Joseph Paul de Grasse commanded the French Fleet at the Battle of the Chesapeake during the last year of the Revolutionary War in 1781.  This helped lead the rebels to victory.

Lots of flowers in the fields.

Trumpet Vine

Coral Honeysuckle

weather station

large cargo ship
St. Teresa's Chapel built in 1924 to serve Catholics who vacationed at Cape Henry Resort, prior to Fort Story. They say if you squeeze you might get 50 people in it.  It has been renovated but is only used for special occasions.

The current Cape Henry Lighthouse.

The Old Cape Henry Lighthouse. 

Including the outside ones it's 191 steps to the top. 

The final assent is on a short ladder.  He warned us about not hitting  your head on a beam, of course, I hit my head on it. 

The slogan for the Holiday Trav-L-Park in Virginia Beach:  Camping's Different Here.  It certainly is.  It has good size sites, is close to the beach, and it does provide a free parking lot a block away from the beach, but...  It is big at 700+ sites and was full on this holiday weekend.  We had a fairly basic RV site, water, electric, and sewer for $70 (on the very high end for us).  We did not go for a premium site with cable TV(surprised with a big town we didn't get much over the air) or a concrete pad (we had gravel).  Verizon service was not good (not their fault) but their wifi was terrible.  They had a few picnic tables, an OK mini-golf course, but charged $3 each, and if you wanted a fire ring they would rent one to you.  A bit pricey for us but there wasn't much else except the KOA down the street.  KOAs are notoriously expensive.  Our on-demand water heater wasn't impressed with the really low water pressure and often declined to heat our water. 

They do have 4 good sized pools.

Mini golf course was in good shape.

We did have a nice shady spot that still provided plenty of solar.  Saturday night brought a cool down with day-time highs in the mid 70's, night-time temperatures in the 60's  and a nice breeze.

We leave Tuesday for our next spot.  I am excited and anxious to share it with you!

Where are the Piepers now?  Virginia Beach. VA

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