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It's getting chilly outside, but the fun gatherings continue in your Captain's Cove home. Bring the good food and good times from your summer barbeques indoors to host your very own autumn dinner party.
A well-decorated table creates the perfect setting for your fall dinner party. From simple layouts to bold arrangements, a few hues of autumn in your dining decor is sure to compliment your seasonal dinner party. This pumpkin and candle centerpiece from Sophia's Decor is excellent for bringing a touch of fall the table.
The Galento Baguette Dough Decorative Bowl from Wayfair adds a dash of well-worn charm to your simple tablescape.
Just twenty-five minutes away from Captain's Cove Resort Community, residents are sure to find a great selection of pumpkins to add to their table at M&C Vessey Farms in Westover, MD. Remember to choose pumpkins small enough to fit into the baguette bowl.
Head to your local Target to top your autumn table off with candles from Chesapeake Bay Candles. The Ombre Macaroon Pillar Candle is sure to bring the subtle sweet rustic aromas of fall to your dinner party. The only thing left is to drape few feet of decorative vines, delicately across your fall arrangement. Save the extras for your next gathering!
Now, what's for dinner?
Start your dinner party off right with this easy to make Harvest Punch recipe. Set the bowl out before the main dish is served to give the guests a chance to mingle casually over tasty drinks. Made with fresh apples, the champagne and vodka mixed drink pairs nicely with Martha Stewart's Cinnamon-Spiced Moroccan Chicken. A mix of cinnamon, turmeric, and chili powder seasonings, will warm up your guests on any chilly autumn night.
Wrap up your evening dinner with a delicious sweet treat. The Caramel-Glazed Monkey Breadrecipe will leave everyone at the table satisfied. Once in the oven, the dough becomes a cakey filling and is baked to a sweet crusted finish!
Enjoy the company of your friends and family on a lovely autumn evening!
With the brisk weather of fall approaching Virginia's Eastern Shore, the residents of Captain's Cove will soon begin to spend some of those chilly autumn nights in the warmth of their homes. Nothing compares to curling up on the couch with a bowl of hearty, feel-good, food on a crisp evening. Cozy up by the fire or binge watch your favorite shows with these mouth-watering comfort food recipes.
Double Crust Chicken Pot Pie
Many consider chicken pot pie to be the ultimate comfort food. However, this Double Crust Chicken Pot Pie recipe will be your rainy day go-to meal for sure! Topped with a thick golden brown crust, the rich, creamy filling pairs nicely for an evening planned in the comfort of your home. This flavorful recipe is also quick and easy to whip up!
Bacon Shrimp and Corn Chowder
This chowder Bacon Shrimp and Corn Chowder dish is sure to satisfy your soul. The crispy bacon, smoky shrimp, and sweet corn are the ideal comfort foods that create a smooth, creamy chowder. Perfectly seasoned with smoked paprika, garlic, and thyme, this meal is excellent all year round. But, like most comfort foods, it tastes better in the fall!
Ultimate Sloppy Joe
The Ultimate Sloppy Joe is the ideal handheld comfort food. These juicy homemade sloppy joes are made with ground beef, onion and green bell peppers that are gently simmered in a brown sugar and tomato sauce. The savory filling is then toppled to your liking in between two toasted brioche buns.
Creamy Beef and Mushroom Stroganoff
Best described as "comfort food at it's finest," this pasta dish will bring out your inner chef! Enjoy juicy steak in a creamy white wine sauce, served over your choice of pasta or noodles. This Creamy Beef and Mushroom Stroganoff will have the heavenly aromas of white wine sauce all throughout your kitchen.
Crunchy Apple Crisp
We saved the sweets for last! The Apple Crisp recipe is the most fitting dessert to indulge in on those cold fall nights. With crust baked golden brown for a crunchy buttery finish, add a scoop of vanilla ice cream to cool off your fresh out the oven apple crisp and enjoy. Don't forget to drizzle a little-salted caramel on top!
Labor Day marks the unofficial end of summer. In the coming weeks, residents of Captain's Coves Resort Community will trade in their colorful floral home decor for the rustic neutrals of autumn. Add the perfect amount of charm to your winter nest with these stylish fall home decor trends!
Velvets Are In
Add a dose of texture to your home this fall with a touch of velvet! Only looking for a little velvet contrast? Try these luscious Pressed Velvet pillows from West Elm, for a warm yet elegant atmosphere in your living room. If seeking a statement piece in your home decor go for the peek of velvet luxury with the Skye Crushed Velvet Comforter from Urban Outfitters.
Light the Way With Lanterns
Illuminate your living space by adding pillar lanterns. Display these fun indoor lights on console tables or grouped on family room floors. Some homeowners will opt for a simple, clean look like the Contemporary Iron Lantern from Wayfair, while others will add their personal touch depending on the season.
Don't let the pending cold weather dampen your green spirit. Shy away from the typical fall decor and lean towards house friendly plants. Adding greenery to the inside of your home is a fresh way to spruce it up, no matter the season. Click here for more for unique ways to add greenery to your fall home decor.
Like velvet, Macrame is no longer a trend of the past. The soft and warm ambiance of the Marcrame adds a gentle touch of autumn to your home. From table runners to wall hangings to woven chairs, the options to incorporate macrame into your home are endless.
A Touch of Blush
Take a break from the usual autumn colors and try the soft tones of blush in your home decor. This color may seem like the idea for spring, but pairing these blushing tones with cool blues and grey tones of winter creates a warm and inviting palette that's perfect for fall.
As summer comes to an end on Virginia's Eastern Shore, the residents of Captain's Cove Resort Community can look forward to the vibrant festivals that celebrate the beauty of fall and all it has to offer. From sipping on your favorite apple spiced seasonal brews to sampling the delicious comfort food of a chili cook-off, we've picked some of the best fall festivals to attend this season.
6th Annual Craft Beer and Music Festival
Less than an hours drive from Captain's Cove, the Eastern Shore's Own Arts Center is excited to host this year's Craft Beer and Music Festival! Enjoy award-winning local and regional craft beer, wine and non-alcoholic beverages along with an array of food highlighting the culture of the Eastern Shore. Guest purchasing the $30 tasting ticket will enjoy festivals admission, unlimited craft beer tastings, a commemorative glass, and one raffle entry.
Chincoteague Chili Chowder Cook-off & Car Show
Take a thirty minute drive to the main street of Chincoteague Island for live music, arts and craft vendors, great food, and a car show. Sample delicious chilis and chowders, enjoy live entertainment and cheer on the participants of the Little Miss Chili Pepper and Mr. Hot Stuff competition. The Chilli Cook-Off is open to the public!
Eastern Shore Music and Soul Food Festival
Enjoy the soulful savory dishes at the Eastern Shore Music and Soul Food Festival. This fun two-day festival is full of exciting ways to enjoy a crisp fall night. Show off your dance skills in the Friday night Dance Challenge, or listen to the smooth sounds of the Evolution Soul Band as you feast on a variety of dishes from celebrity chef, Jacoby Ponde. Only an hour away from our Captain's Cove community, this soul food festival is worth the drive. General admission for the festival is $30.
Chincoteague Oyster Festival
The famous Chincoteague Oyster Festival signifies the official kickoff oyster season on the Eastern Shore. Half an hour away from Captain's Cove Resort Community, indulge in an array of oyster and clam dishes at Tom's Cove Park while listening to the rock and roll sounds of the Island Boys. Guest can also look forward to shrimp cocktail, a salad bar, hot dogs, hush puppies, and Boardwalk Fries. Beverages are included in the $45 ticket price.
Enjoy autumn on the Eastern Shore at one or all of these fall festivals!
Less than twenty minutes away from Captain's Cove Resort Community awaits the perfect quick summer getaway. Home to one of only four major rocket launch locations in the United States, Wallops Island has become a must-see tourist attraction along the Delmarva Peninsula.
Start your day at the NASA Wallops Flight Facility Visitor Center. The facility offers guests the unique opportunity to explore the past, present, and future of Wallops Island. Discover exhibits about orbital and suborbital rockets, current missions, and the history of the Wallops Flight Facility. In addition to several insightful exhibits, the museum features a slew of interactive activities for visitors of all ages to enjoy. Check the facility website for scheduled rocket launches and viewing locations before traveling.
A few minutes away from the flight facility is the Chincoteague Bay Field Station. This non-profit environmental center is dedicated to providing adventures that explore wildlife and marine environments through hands-on education. Make your visit one to remember by signing up for one of the Family Day Programs. Throughout these programs, groups will discover the unique marine habitats of the Eastern Shore and the fascinating creatures that live in them.
Take a break from your coastal getaway and stop for a quick bite. Ray's Shanty has been serving up the Eastern Shore's freshest seafood since 1986. Try a pound of the freshly caught Chincoteague Clams and Oysters with a hearty side of Ray's famous hush puppies.
Once you've finished your delicious seafood lunch, make your way to the Eastern Shore's Queen Hive Farm for a fun afternoon of horseback riding. Book your rides in advance as this is one of the few horse farms in the area that offers riding sessions for visitors. Enjoy an hour horseback riding through the grass fields and wooded area of Queen Hive Farm.
A day of Eastern Shore's coastal adventures awaits you. From rocket launches to horseback riding, the quick drive to Wallops Islands makes for an ideal day trip. Head to Wallops Island before the summer season ends!
Who hasn't been loving these hot sunny summer days? Beach days and barbeques are what summers are all about! However, everyone needs a chance to cool off during the hottest months of the year. Take a break from the sun with these fun summer themed DIY projects.
Take some much-needed rest from the rising temperatures of summer with this fun Seashell Bath Bomb DIY. Pick up seashell molds from the local craft store to recreate this particular batch of nautically themed bath bombs. Click here for a detailed list of ingredients. You'll love the aroma of of these earthy scents after a hot day
Keep the sand to a minimum with a DIY Mesh Beach Bag. Grab an old window screen, or find one from the local hardware store, to create your go-to beach tote. The versatility of the screen mesh allows the material to be molded into the perfect bag everyone should have at the beach.
Skip tossing out your wine bottles in the trash, and opt to transform them into mini gardens. Creating this Wine Bottle Succulent Planter is a relaxing way to spend a hot summer day indoors. Although this particular project calls for a little patience, the succulent planter is worth it.
Three ingredients and little time in the freezer is all this easy Blueberry Breakfast Popsicle recipe needs! Start your summer day off refreshed with these delicious, quick, and healthy breakfast popsicles.
Repurpose your old hose from last year to create this DIY Garden Hose Rug for your patio or deck! Using nothing more than a few old hoses and a bag of zip ties, you can create an outdoor mat that adds just the right amount of color to your backyard.
Enjoy the rest of summer!
Add a little patriotic pride to your 4th of July barbecues this year. These fun themed recipes and decorations are sure to make your all-American cookout one to remember.
Set the Scene
Your guests will love these DIY Patriotic Plastic Cup Twirlers. Grab a few solo cups (red and blue recommended, of course) and start cutting them into a festive spiral party decoration. Hang them from your fence, tables, and chairs to show your 4th of July Spirit.
For a little extra sparkle try these Patriotic Sand Art Mason Jar Decorations. Layer a clean mason jar with your sandy Independence Day colors and add a tealight candle or sparkler to illuminate your BBQ while waiting on the fireworks.
The Sounds of Independence
It's not a 4th of July party without music. Luckily, Spotify has accumulated the perfect playlist to get your BBQ started in the right direction! Partygoers won't be able to resist singing along to Bruce Springsteen's Born in the USA or Living In America by James Brown.
Red, White, and Blue Cocktails
Toast to the land of the free with this patriotic cocktail Make the most of berry season as you sip on the Berry United. This delicious beverage combines lemon juice, Cointreau, and Crème de Mure to create the ideal 4th of July signature drink!
Fire Up the Grill
Stack up the veggies and meats with these grilled Chicken Fajita Kabobs. For an extra burst of flavor, marinate your chicken with a zest of lime. Don't forget the guacamole and sour cream!
These Dr.Pepper Baby Back Ribs are sure to add that extra pop to your BBQ this year. Once seasoned with dry rub, place the ribs meat side up in a large roasting pan with a rack. Pour Dr. Pepper to the bottom of the roasting pan. Cover the roasting pan with foil so Dr. Pepper can steam and infuse the ribs.
What's for Dessert
Hope you have room left over for dessert. With fresh fruit and creamy cheesecake filling, the Red White and Blue Cheesecake Salad is sure to be a crowd pleaser. Fresh strawberries, blueberries, bananas, and cream are gently tossed together to create a creamy red, white and blue fruit salad!
The sun is out and the skies are clear. Sounds like the best time to hit the road and drive towards a new adventure. No need to worry about lodgings. We're not going too far on these short summer road trips so you'll be back just in time for dinner!
Kiptopeke State Park
Time: One Hour and Twenty-Five Minutes
An hour and a half away from Captains Cove is Kiptopeke State Park. With more than 5 miles of biking and hiking trails, explore the park's wooded area as you keep an eye out for eagles and other Virginia native wildlife. Swim in the coastal beach waters if you're looking to cool down or cast a line from the fishing pier for a little R&R.
Barrier Island Center
Time: One Hour and Ten Minutes
Once the home to a vibrant fisherman community, the Virginia Barrier Islands now serves as wildlife and recreation areas along Virginia coastline. The Barrier Island Center (BIC) strives to preserve the unique culture and history of the barrier islands through education and the collection and interpretation of artifacts. Entry to the museum is free of charge. Enjoy artifacts artfully displayed that tell the stories of the men and women who lived, worked, and played on the barrier islands.
Auburn Heights Preserve
Time: Two Hours and Fifty-Five Minutes
See what life was like at the dawn of the automotive era! Auburn Heights Preserve features a furnished mansion completed in 1897 as well as the Marshall Steam Museum with the largest collection of operating steam cars in the world. Call ahead to schedule visit today!
Chesapeake Bay Maritime Museum
Time: One Hour and Fifty-Seven Minutes
A true treasure of the Chesapeake Bay, the Chesapeake Bay Maritime Museum is dedicated to preserving and exploring the history, environment, and people of the Chesapeake Bay. Situated in St.Michaels, Maryland, the museum's boat collection includes 85 Chesapeake Bay authentic watercraft.
Weather your learning about the history and culture of Virginia's Barrier Reef or watching for bald eagles at Kiptopeke State Park, these short summer road trips are worth the drive!
Head to your favorite Chincoteague beach to enjoy a day of picnicking by the water! We've picked out our favorite picnic baskets and a few suggestions on what to put in them! Let's get picnic ready.
Picnic Time Country Basket
Basket Suggestion- Fresh fruit! Especially your favorite apples.
Price - $36.00
Let's start with this traditional basket from Target! The wooden lid provides a level surface for placing your lunch Although these adorable baskets are sold out in stores, they're still available to order online.
Willow Picnic Basket with Wooden Lid
Basket Suggestion-Fresh baked bread, antipasto platter, and wine
Price - $34.99
Straight from Chip & Joanna Gaines home decor line, Hearth and Hand by Magnolia, this stunning basket will have you eating in style. The basket is made from sturdy, woven wicker and features leather straps for easy, comfortable carrying.
Picnic at Ascot Settler Hamptons Picnic Basket
Basket Suggestion-Sandwich or sub and chips
Price - $85.99
Set the scene for a romantic lunch with this beautiful light wicker picnic basket from Bed Bath and Beyond. The woven basket with wooden handles includes melamine plates, napkins, wine glasses, and flatware to cut your sandwiches in half.
Woven Willow Vintage Hamper Set Basket
Basket Suggestion-Caprese chopped salad and macaroons (for dessert)
Price - $85.99
This luxurious basket takes picnicking to the next level! This durable, dark wood picnic basket includes cutlery, plates, and glassware. The cold storage lining is perfect for packing salads and keeping drinks cool.
Erving Park Picnic Basket Set
Basket Suggestion- Hummus, pita bread, and lemonade
Price - $112.99
Awaken the pioneer in you with this cotton canvas picnic basket. The water-resistant lining is perfect for carrying your beverages and we can't get enough of the khaki accents!
Memorial Day is a day of remembrance. But for many this holiday signifies the start of the summer season. Fire up the grill and prep the meats (and veggies)! We've got some fun recipes to throw on your grill this Memorial Day.
Grilled Aloha Chicken
Add a little sweet and tangy to your grilled chicken with this yummy Aloha Chicken recipe. The smokey smell of pineapple is sure to be a crowd pleaser.
No campfire needed for this potato lovers dream! Guests won't be able to resist these cheesy Campfire Potatoes. For a fully "loaded" experience, chop up some crispy bacon and add a dollop of sour cream.
Creamy Black Pepper Coleslaw
Coleslaw is a summer cookout must! This coleslaw recipe ensures that the veggies will stay crisp and the flavors will meld as the slaw chills.
Sirloin Steak Kabob
Kabobs require a little extra prep, but these tender Sirloin Kabobs are worth it! Give your veggies and meat a few extra minutes to marinate for an explosion of mouthwatering flavors!
Grilled Corn and Black Bean Salad with Cilantro Lime Dressing
This smokey grilled corn paired with the zesty lime dressing makes the perfect salad side dish!
Show moms a little extra love this Mother's Day with these fun celebration ideas your mom will enjoy.
Blushing Mimosas for Mother's Day Brunch
Mom will enjoy every last drop of these yummy Blushing Mimosas. These bright pink cocktails will lighten up any Mother's Day brunch. Step out of your traditional mimosa box and try the refreshing taste of pineapple juice, grenadine, orange juice, and, of course, champagne.
Mother's Day Cupcake Toppers
Here's something that's sure to sweeten up mom's day! These easy to make cake toppers will have your mom smiling from ear to ear. Simply download and print these high resolution PDF files, cut, glue and you are ready to entertain.
At Home Spa Day
Give your mom the pampering she deserves while you treat her to a personal spa day! Make your own rose water toner or use your blender to create a hydrating mask! These DIY spa day ideas are sure to leave mom feeling relaxed and rejuvenated.
Mothers Day Tea Party
Invite all the mothers in your life to a Mother's Day Tea Party! Adorn your table with lace cloth and bring out your best china to eat crumpets from. Hand out scarves and white gloves to make your guests feel like they're at an authentic tea party. And don't forget mom's favorite tea!
Breakfast in Bed
Give mom a gift she would love and greatly appreciate, breakfast in bed! Wake mom up to the smell of the breakfast of champions ( aka the breakfast of moms) as you hand her a beautiful tray of her breakfast favorites! Don't forget to clean up the kitchen when you're done. No moms are allowed to clean on Mother's Day!
As the weather continues to warm up, many are headed to the beach for a little rest and relaxation. Pack these New York Times best sellers into your beach bag this spring for a perfect day at your favorite Virginia Beach.
Camino Island, John Grisham
Synopsis: A search for stolen rare manuscripts leads to a Florida island.
New York Times Review: The book provides the pleasure of a leisurely jaunt periodically jolted into high gear, just for the fun and speed of it.
Ready Player One, Ernest Cline
Synopsis: It's 2044, life on a resource-depleted Earth has grown increasingly grim, and the key to a vast fortune is hidden in a virtual-reality world.
New York Times Review: Ernest Cline's "Ready Player One" is a book filled with references to video games, virtual reality, '80s pop-culture trivia, geek heroes like E. Gary Gygax, and funny-sounding cult items like Frobozz and Raaka-Tu. Yet it works for people who like books without pictures too.
Little Fires Everywhere, Celeste Ng
Synopsis: An artist upends a quiet town outside Cleveland.
New York Times Review: The magic of this novel lies in its power to implicate all of its characters — and likely many of its readers — in that innocent delusion. Who set the little fires everywhere? We keep reading to find out, even as we suspect that it could be us with ash on our hands.
Educated, Tara Westover
Synopsis: In this biography, the daughter of survivalists, who is kept out of school, educates herself enough to leave home for university.
New York Times Review: The extremity of Westover's upbringing emerges gradually through her telling, which only makes the telling more alluring and harrowing.
Red Sparrow, Jason Matthews
Synopsis: A Russian intelligence officer trained in the art of seduction becomes entangled with a young C.I.A. officer.
New York Times Review: From dead drops to honey traps, trunk escapes to burst transmissions, Matthews offers the reader a primer in 21st-century spying.
12 Strong, Doug Stanton
Synopsis: Special Forces soldiers fought the Taliban on horseback shortly after 9/11. First published in print as "Horse Soldiers." 16 hours, 40 minutes unabridged. Read by Jack Garrett.
New York Times Review: There's a lot to admire about "Horse Soldiers." Stanton packs a huge amount of research into a thrilling action ride of a book.
The annual Pony Swim from Assateague Island to Chincoteague Island gains the attention of locals and hundreds of tourist each year in July! Many are surprised to learn that the famous Saltwater Cowboys round up the Assateague ponies in the spring and fall, in addition to their celebrated Pony Swim during the summer. On April 12 and 13, the ponies will be rounded up into corrals on Assateague Island for an overall health check by a veterinarian before they are auctioned off in July.
The "Southern Herd", located on the southern end of Assateague Island, is rounded up Friday afternoon starting at 4 pm. Fifty wild ponies are herded along the beach access road which leads to the Woodland Trail Coral. The roundup usually takes a couple hours and spectators are able to view the ponies in the corral after the roundup.
First thing in the morning visitors can witness the roundup of 100 ponies further north of Assateague Island. The"Northern Herd" is rounded up into a corral which is about 3 miles from the Service Road. The roundup of the herd takes about 5-6 hours to complete due to there being more ponies than the southern herd and more ground to cover.
- The Spring Pony Roundup is a great opportunity for the public to view the ponies up close without large crowds of the Pony Swim and Auction in July.
- If you are planning to view the Ponies in the "Southern Corral" Saturday get there early. The vet will start in the morning and once all the Ponies have been treated they will be released.
- For a better view bring a step stool so you can see over the top of the fence.
Visit Assateague Island National Seashores website for more information on the fall and spring Pony Round Up and check out our blog on the annual Pony Swim from Assateague Island to Chincoteague Island.
Spring is around the corner! Welcome the change of season to your home with these fun spring DIY projects.
3D Framed Botanicals
Add a touch of spring to your walls with these fun 3D garden frames. Whether you're looking to create one frame to sit on an end table or cover an entire wall, this DIY will add the perfect touch of spring to your home.
Fruit Slice Welcome Mat
Welcome your guest to those spring soirees with this mouth-watering door mat. Revamp any circular mat to create your lemon or watermelon spring welcome mat!
This lemon lined floral centerpiece will look great and smell even better! The chic centerpiece calls for a mason jar, lemon, and your favorite flowers. Switch out the lemons for oranges to experiment with scents.
Dip Dye Linens
Transform your basic table linen this spring into a colorful arrangement made for entertaining. Choose from a variety of trendy art and patterns to bring spring to the table.
Rainy Day Storage
April showers are sure to come with the arrival of spring. Be ready to grab your umbrella and go with a variety of fun DIY umbrella holders.
Feb 28, 2018
New year, new decor trends. We've rounded up some of the top home decor trends of 2018 that we can't wait to try out this year!
Use natural wood in your kitchen for the counter and table, shelving and storage, and accent pieces.
This year, brass is making a comeback. No more brushed silver or stainless steel; this year look for brass finishes, light fixtures and decor.
Wallpaper is a lot of work, and a big commitment. Use removable wallpaper instead to give your home an accent wall or a pop of color, without the commitment.
Marble is making a comeback, but that doesn't mean you have to go buy all new marble countertops. Incorporate this trend with marble print wallpaper, pillows and secor.
Move over, white subway tile. Now it's all about geometric tiles in bold, bright colors. Utilize this trend in your kitchen backsplash or in the bathroom.
Feb 12, 2018
When we're ready to make some DIY home upgrades, we look to look to home bloggers for inspiration, tips and how-to's. We've rounded up 5 of our favorite DIY Inspiration Blogs. Enjoy!
Ikea Hacking is all about taking simple furniture from Ikea and turning it into something more. Get some great ideas here.
Must-read recent post: Hack List: 12 Ikea Hacks to Try in 2018
Young House Love
Creators John and Sherry have fixed up 3 homes, written books, and designed products, so you could consider them experts with their blog of over 3,000 DIY and home projects & posts.
Must-read recent post: How to Create a TV Gallery Wall
At Charlotte's House
Blogger Charlotte takes on everything from fixing up a 100 year old house, to tiling, upholstery, and flea market finds.
Must-read recent post: Winter Gear Storage
Nesting With Grace
Follow along with blogger and designer Brooke Christen as she nests and creates a home in her family's 1950's tiny cape.
Must-read recent post: Top 5 Bang For Your Buck Ideas
Little Green Notebook
Blogger Jenny is a Phoenix-based interior designer sharing her favorite products, ideas and projects on her blog.
Must-read recent post: Office Makeover with BEHR's 2018 Color of the Year
Jan 31, 2018
With the low light, cold temperatures, and dry air of winter, your houseplants may need a little extra TLC to make it through to spring. But don't worry; all it takes is a few quick changes to your normal routine. We've rounded up some easy tips to make sure your houseplant is happy and healthy all winter long!
Many plants go into a hibernation mode in the winter, so they don't need as much water. Water them lightly, and when in doubt check to see if the soil is moist about an inch below the surface. If so, they're fine.
Humidity drops drastically with the dry, winter air but plants prefer higher humidity. Keep your plants happy by keeping them near a humidifier if you use one, or try one of these methods:
- Group plants together. There tends to be more moisture around the pots because they are full of moist soil so your plants can share that moist air. Plants don't like to touch each other though, so keep some space in between.
- Create a pebble tray: Line a waterproof tray with pebbles and then fill the tray with water. Place the plant on the pebbles (there should be enough pebbles that the plant is not resting directly in water). As the water in the pebbles evaporates, it creates humidity for the plants.
Most houseplants prefer temperatures between 65° and 75°, so keep them away from particularly drafty windows or direct heat sources.
During winter, the sun is lower in the sky and light levels drop. Check to make sure your plants are in a location that are getting enough sun. Move plants closer to the windows (as long as they're not drafty -- see above) and if possible, they should face south or west.
Clean the leaves
Homes tend to accumulate more dust in the winter because the air is warm and dry. Dusty plant leaves can be bad news, as they encourage disease and can prevent sunlight absorption. Make sure you keep your plant leaves dust-free.
Jan 11, 2018
If your New Year's resolution was to be more clean, organized or just to live more simply, we have some tips for you. From small steps you can take every day to cleaning and decluttering problem areas, we've rounded up 10 tips to help you get organized in January.
You stare at your phone all day, using it for grocery lists, notes, calendar reminders, and more. Start by giving your phone a refresh. Clean out old notes, contacts, text messages, and unused apps. Then organize your homepage into folders and get a new wallpaper.
Walk your home with a trash bag (or several). Go room to room, and fill them.
Walk your home with a donation bag. Hit the closests, toy room, bookshelves. Schedule a pickup or drop off as soon as the bag is full.
Start off with the storage supplies you need. Make sure you have plastic bins for off-season items, a filing system for the office, shelves for the kids' toys, and a drawer organizer like this Everything Organizer from the Container Store.
Make sure your foyer is set up for organization. Have a bowl for keys, hooks for bags, shoe rack for shoes, and a bin for umbrellas, sports equipment, and other random things.
Forget the weekends spent doing laundry all day long. Do a small load of laundry every day and stay head of it.
Next time you get gas, don't just sit and wait. Collect all of the trash and clean your car out. Throw it away there, and drive off in a clearer car.
Clear out your fridge and cabinets, throwing away expired items and making a restock list. Before you put items back in, wipe down the shelves.
Use baskets, jars and clear bins to organize your pantry and keep like-items together: kids' snacks, baking supplies, pasta boxes, etc.
Make your mornings easier. A measly five minutes in the evening to pack your work and school bags, make lunch, and pull out an outfit will not only make the morning go smoother, but you won't end up with a messy room and kitchen when it's time to run out for work.
Follow Emily Ley on Facebook, who wrote the bestseller A Simplified Life: Tactical Tools for Intentional Living and has been sharing a tip for each day in January!
Dec 14, 2017
New year, new cocktails. A plain glass of champagne is so last year. Instead, ring in 2018 with one (or a few) of our favorite champagne cocktails. From jello shooters to gummy bears to sorbet floats, there's nothing boring about these drinks. Enjoy responsibly, Cheers, and Happy New Year from Captain's Cove!
Cotton Candy Champagne Cocktails from Kirbie's Cravings
Add fluffy cotton candy to your glass of champagne for a fizzy, sweet champagne cocktail.
Champagne Jello Cups from The First Year Blog
This beautiful concoction layers a sweetened condensed milk jello layer in between two champagne jello layers. Complete with gold sprinkles on the rim, it looks too delicious not to devour.
Champagne Soaked Gummy Bears from The Skinny Fork
Sipping your champagne is so last year. Instead, let these gummy bears soak it up for you. Then, enjoy!
Frozen Champagne Margaritas by Sugar and Soul
This fun twist on a classic margarita recipe makes it perfect to help you ring in the new year.
Raspberry Champagne Float by Well Plated
Start with a scoop of your favorite sorbet, and top with champagne. As the sherbet melts, the frothy liquid becomes rich, creamy, and fizzy. And delicious.
Champagne Jello Shots by Feast and West
Haven't made jello shots since college? Follow this recipe for a more sophisticated version, with champagne mixed in and topped with glittery gold and white sprinkles.
New Year's Eve Champagne Punch by Sugar and Soul
If you're hosting a large crowd, this punch recipe is the perfect thing to mix up. The longer the mixture sits together, the better it tastes.
White Chocolate Champagne Cheesecake Shooters by The First Year Blog
White chocolate, cheesecake, and champagne -- what more could you want?! And they look extra festive topped with a gold tinsel ball or cherry dipped in gold sprinkles.
Dec 01, 2017
When we think holiday shopping, there's one place that comes to mind: Main Street in Chincoteague. The quaint downtown area of Chincoteague is full of locally-owned shops and galleries with one-of-a-kind items you can't find anywhere else. Here, you're sure to find something for everyone on your list.
Flying Fish Gallery
4088 Main Street
This gallery has over 100 American artist on display, with 30 local and regional artists. You'll find unique paintings, metal and glass art, jewelry and more, with a different selection each time you visit.
4019 Main St Chincoteague
This is unlike any other shop on the island, featuring unique and original jewelry, wood, shell, paint, textile, glass, and photographic creations. They also have fun products like colorful kites, flags and banners; unique games, puzzles and toys for all ages; spiritual art and books; and one-of-a-kind craft and art pieces.
Hollyhocks on Main
4090 Main Street
Hollyhocks features home decor, vintage finds and items made by local artists. You're sure to find something different every time you visit.
4065 Main Street
Now in it's 10th season in business, Sundial Books has an eclectic mix of new and used books, local favorites and unexpected treasures, as well as gifts and local art.
The Osprey Nest
4096 Main Street
The Osprey Nest has an art gallery, custom framing services, and a gift shop including works from over 50 local, regional, and nationally known artists with items ranging from apparel, pottery, jewelry, decoys, children's gifts, and home decor.
Nov 22, 2017
As we get ready to kick off the holiday season, we like to take some time to think of those who are less fortunate. We've rounded up just a few worthy causes near Captain's Cove where you can donate and volunteer this holiday season.
The Eastern Shore SPCA provides shelter, food, medical care, and adoption services for homeless and abandoned dogs and cats. You can help this season by making a donation, choosing Eastern Shore SPCA as your cause when you shop on AmazonSmile, or come to the shelter to volunteer your time in the kennel and cat rooms.
Since 1981, the Foodbank has been leading the effort to eliminate hunger in our community, distributing over 272 million pounds of food equating to over 226.8 million meals. The 21st Annual Mayflower Marathon Food Drive last weekend was able to raise enough food to distribute non-perishable items, turkeys, potatoes, sweet potatoes, and onions to 172 partner agency food pantries and soup kitchens. See more here.
The Eastern Shore Coalition Against Domestic Violence's mission is to provide support and empowerment to victims of domestic and sexual abuse and to provide programs that increase awareness and prevention in the community. You can help with a monetary donation or volunteering in several different areas, including fundraising support, children's services support hotline support and more.
Living in Captain's Cove has given us a unique view of the beauty of Virginia's Eastern Shore. CBES is a grassroots organization dedicated to promoting sustainable development on the Eastern Shore to promote balanced growth, enhance the quality of life of all our citizens, and preserve our cultural and natural resources.
Can't choose just one cause? Make a contribution to the Eastern Shore of Virginia Community Foundation, which is a charitable endowment that provides grants to nonprofits on the Eastern Shore of Virginia. 2017 recipients include Cape Charles Citizens For Central Park, Tasley Fire Company and Shore Soccer League.
Nov 08, 2017
One of our favorite parts of living in Captain's Cove is that there's always something to do outdoors, like fishing, birding, hiking and more. Outside time doesn't stop when it gets cold outside, so we've rounded up some of our favorite ways to get your outdoor living area ready for fall, winter and beyond.
Make your outdoor space cozy by adding a rug to your porch, and plenty of seating covered with pillows and throw blankets.
Make it festive
Make your porch a place you'll really want to spend time by dressing it up for the holidays! Start will autumn wreaths, faux pumpkins, corn husks and more with these fall porch decorating ideas, and bookmark these holiday decorating ideas for next month!
Make the space feel warmer and more inviting with plenty of candles and soft, low lighting.
Drink in the warmth
Stay warm with a hot, seasonal drink like hot apple cider, white hot chocolate, hot mulled wine and more. See some of our favorite recipes here.
Add some life to your porch, even in the colder months. Check out this list of cold-loving plants that will last all winter long!
When it gets too cold and the blankets just aren't cutting it, add a fire feature! Get a chiminea, fire table or even make your own fire pit. See how here.
Oct 24, 2017
Captain's Cove is close to many of the area's best places for animal lovers to go birding, with its location along Virginia's Barrier Islands and near two of the state's National Wildlife Refuges. We've rounded up our favorite places to go birding near Captain's Cove and some of the species you can expect to see this fall.
Chincoteague Island National Wildlife Refuge
8231 Beach Road, Chincoteague Island, VA 23336
Chincoteague is home to beaches, dunes, shrubland, maritime forest, freshwater wetlands, and salt marshes, making it one of the most diverse birding locations. More than 320 species are known to use the refuge regularly during migration, and at least 100 species of birds are present at any given time. A visitor center, bird checklists, beach access, and an array of wildlife species make this one of the nation's premier sites for easily accessible wildlife viewing.
The fall and winter months provide the best time to see large varieties of geese, ducks and swans. Almost 200 sightings of Canada Goose have been reported in just the last 3 days.
Kiptopeke State Park
3540 Kiptopeke Dr., Cape Charles, VA 23310
At the southern end of Virginia's Eastern Shore, Kiptopeke State Park is a great place for fall migrant birds of all sorts, as they're funneled toward the tip of the Delmarva Peninsula on their southward journey. Five miles of hiking trails provide plenty of wooded and open habitat for wildlife viewing.
Kiptopeke State Park is established as one of the most important fall hawk-watch sites in the country. Hawk Watch began here in 1977, and has accumulated a list of 19 species, having recorded 750,000 individual birds. Observations begin annually on September 1 at the park's Hawkwatch platform and Hawk Watching there is one of the premier events at the annual Eastern Shore Birding and Wildlife Festival in early October.
Eastern Shore of Virginia National Wildlife Refuge
32205 Seaside Road, Cape Charles, Virginia 23310
Located at the tip of the Delmarva Peninsula, the Eastern Shore of Virginia National Wildlife Refuge is one of the most important avian migration funnels in North America, making it an ideal place for bird watching. In the fall, southbound waterfowl, raptors, shorebirds, and songbirds pass through the refuge, where they pause to rest and feed before continuing their journey.
The refuge's beautiful salt marsh is one of the most beautiful landscapes in the National Wildlife Refuge. The abundance of water is ideal for water-loving birds, like egrets, ibis, rails, and the beautiful Blue Heron seen above.
Oct 16, 2017
Looking for a fun, local event to go to this October? Don't worry, we've got one of the best events coming. Check out over 50 craft beers from over 25 breweries will be available for sampling at the Virginia Beach Craft Beer Festival. Tickets are $35 for Saturday and $30 Sunday. The tickets include unlimited sampling, a commemorative cup, and live entertainment. Performances include Dustin Furlow and Nate Sacks & the Lifehacks (Saturday) and Blackwater Jam and Woodwork (Sunday).
Some great breweries will be there that you must check out! Stop by Smartmouth's with their great all-year-round brews like Murphy's Law and Safety Dance. Checkout Devils Backbone- they've got some fun beers to try with some fun names to match like Cattywompus or Kilt Flasher. They are also going to feature more well-known breweries like Goose Island and Lagunitas. Get your red solo's ready, bring along a designated driver, and come enjoy trying new brews and great music!
Check out the website for more information on tickets, parking, and the breweries that will be joining you. This is a great way to spend the day with some adult friends and family. Drink responsibly and have fun!
Sep 25, 2017
September into October is the best time of the year here! No mosquitoes, balmy weather, no crowds, dolphins frolicking in the ocean every afternoon- you definitely don't want to miss it. This is our list of how you make the most of it.
- The Chamber of Commerce is a good place to start - they can provide you with maps and lists of activities. This is a great place to find out about current local events and tours.
- Most restaurants are still open in September and you can get menus at the Chamber of Commerce. Even better, you can scope out the restaurants before you go so you can hit up the one with the best reviews!
- Be sure you visit the Wildlife Refuge center and maybe take a bus tour or a boat tour while you're here.
- The new Museum of Chincoteague is also great. Here they make it their mission to "collect and preserve the material culture that reflects the historical progression of the life on Chincoteague Island." This museum is unique to Chincoteague and is a wonderful way to experience its charm.
- We have a wonderful downtown area on Main Street that includes lots of little shops and a waterfront park. See Misty's hoofprints in the sidewalk in front of the Island Roxy movie theater. It really is a great time to visit Chincoteague!
- Don't miss out on the beauty of Chincoteague this next month! It's truly a gem to behold with perfect weather and no crowds. Whether it's a trip with friends or family there is so much to see and explore. You may even have to make multiple trips to truly experience all of the amazing things here. You'll never want to leave!
Sep 07, 2017
Helping with hours of homework on top of bringing the kids to their extracurriculars takes up a lot of time after school. If the back-to-school season is leaving you with little time to prepare better dinners, start prepping on the weekend! We've got you covered with some great meal prep tips. With these tips, getting dinner on the table in your Captain's Cove home should really only take twenty minutes.
1. Plan for the Week
You can't go into meal prep blind. Plan out your meals for the week before you go to the grocery store. This will help you not overspend and will organize your meals for meal prep day. Need some ideas on meals that kids will like? Check out this list!
1. Chop Chop!
Now that all your meals are planned, you can figure out what needs to be chopped, sliced, or diced up! This is something that you can do ahead of time that adds on a lot of time to cooking dinner each night. You can then store what you've cut into sandwich bags or tupperware containers.
3. Measure Up
Measuring out things ahead of time such as rice or spices can also help you save time during the week. This is another reason why planning meals for the week is so handy and saves you time in the long run. You can even prep marinades or sauces beforehand by measuring out the ingredients and storing them either individually or separately.
4. Order Up!
While you don't have to cook the meal and reheat it during the week, you can cook parts of it such as a sauce or broth. These things are easy to reheat to save you time, while not giving you a leftover feeling with your dinner. Cooking proteins or starches beforehand are things you can cook, but these things are harder to heat up while still keeping the meal fresh.
Our last tip is to use paper plates to eat. Cooking takes a lot of time and effort and so does doing the dishes. While you will have some dishes, a lot of them will be done on your prep day and if you use paper plates and cups this will also save on time loading the dishwasher! Also, while eating out or ordering delivery can get expensive, if you need a break it's okay to do it once in awhile and take some time for yourself! Happy eating!
Aug 21, 2017
Labor Day Weekend is a great time to spend with friends and family on the water. The sun beaming down on the water and the company of your friends and family. What could be better? Here's some safety tips to help you really enjoy the boat this labor day weekend.
1. Check the weather
It's better to know the weather before hand. You don't want to get caught in the rain and have soggy sandwiches for lunch. So, be safe and check your local weather beforehand.
2. Consider a Free Vessel Safety Check
Take advantage of a free vessel safety check from the US Coast Guard they offer free boat inspections to verify the presence and condition of certain safety equipment required by state and federal regulations.
3. Follow a Pre-Departure Checklist
There's a lot you need for a day out on the boat. Here's a good list to check of some of the essentials before taking off.
4. Use of Lifejackets
Whether you're a good simmer or not, you should always wear a lifejacket. Buckle the jacket up and be safe!
With these safety tips, you've got a great start to enjoying Labor Day Weekend on the boat! Cheers!
Aug 14, 2017
We have a great golf course here, at Captain's Cove. If the heat is keeping you from enjoying 18 holes with your friends and family, we've got some great tips on how to golf in the heat! We challenge golfers with one of the finest experiences on the shore.
Wear light colors
Everyone knows that darker colors attract more sun, so be sure to keep this in mind when getting ready for your golf trip.
Clothing fabric counts
Ditch the close-fitting spandex. Instead opt for breathable attire made of cotton or moisture-wicking fabrics. If you visit your local sports store, a sales associate should be able to help you choose appropriate fabrics like these. You can even check out our pro shop for your next tee time and we would be happy to recommend something for you!
Book an earlier tee time
The earlier you can book your tee time the better. Don't give the sun too much of a jump start to heat up the course.
Nutrition and water
It's important to prep, even the night before, don't load up on carbs the night before. The day before, you should eat a meal with protein and vitamins and you should even start hydrating with water days before. Drinking coffee, soda, or alcohol will dehydrate you quickly, so be weary of these beverages.
Also, while sunblock won't help turn the heat down it will protect your skin, so be sure to grab a high spf sunblock and bring it along so you can reapply.
With these tricks to face the warm weather, you'll be enjoying tee time with all of us at Captain's Cove Golf Course in no time!
Jul 31, 2017
It's summer and you want to make the most of the gorgeous weather, but some days it's just too hot. After the adventures you've already had outdoors this summer, you may be stumped for ideas on some activities indoors to beat the heat. Have no fear! Here are five great ideas on things to do inside.
Build a Fort
Building a fort, regardless of what age you are, is always fun. Even better than that, staying in a fort with cool sheets to block out the heat is a great way to stay cool in your Captain's Cove residence. You can always rent a redbox movie or two, or use an online streaming service to watch a movie while you're in the fort. Heck- even ordering a pizza (take out is key so you don't have to fire up the oven and heat up the house) and eating it in the fort is fun. Fairly inexpensive and you don't even have to leave the house!
Visit the Osprey Nest Art Gallery in Chincoteague
Here you can see Chincoteague pony, wildlife, and landscape paintings by resident artist Kevin McBride. Original works, giclees, and prints are available and can be custom framed to suit your needs, or you can stop in to view the art. After, you can visit a local restaurant for a bite to eat! For more information on the art gallery, visit their website.
Visit the Eastern Shore Railway Museum
If you like to explore museums, but art is not your thing, check out the Eastern Shore Railway Museum in Parksley! Learn all about the iron horse and it's history! The main museum building contains railroad memorabilia from the mid-1800s, and the 1927 Diplomat, which has several cars that are available for guided tours. Admission for children 12 and under is free and only $2 for adults! For more information, check out this website.
Visit the Chincoteague Island Library
Libraries can keep you entertained for weeks, and are the perfect place to visit other worlds and time periods while still keeping cool indoors. Get lost in a book, enjoy the AC and revitalize that lost love of reading. For more information, visit their website here.
Visit the Island Creamery
What better way to stay cool than to pick up some ice cream to eat there or to go? The Island Creamery has some amazing flavors like marsh mud, snickers cheesecake, java jolt, black raspberry, birthday cake, and more! For more information and a list of their flavors, visit their website!
There are plenty of things to do on the Virginia shore besides enjoying the beach and waterlife. And there's more to do indoors than just the movies or bowling. Be sure to stay safe and cool this summer, and have fun while doing it!
Jul 15, 2017
Summer is booming in Chincoteague and there are so many fun activities to do in the month of July. From game nights and pony auctions to storytelling and music at the dock, there is so much to do. Here are some of our favorite upcoming events this month!
July 15, 2017
The Island Coffeehouse presents a variety events in the arts each month. Acoustic musicians, visual art showings, spoken word artists, are all found at this monthly event. Stop on by for food, drink and enriching artistic experiences.
Fee: $5; $3 for students aged 22 and under.
For more details: www.chincoteagueculturalalliance.org/coffeehouse.htmlytelling-guild.html.
Time: Doors open 6:30 pm; Performances begin 7:00pm.
Location: Chincoteague Cultural Alliance (6309 Church Street)
Sponsor: Chincoteague Cultural Alliance
July 18, 2017
Tuesday Nights at the Museum: Where Island Tales Are Told
Every Tuesday the Museum hosts a different speaker to discuss a topic, so take advantage of this enriching experience! Check the museum website for up-to-date speakers and topics.
Fee: $4 admission for adults. Free event admission for children (12 years & under), active military, & Museum Members.
For more details: chincoteaguemuseum.com/programs.
Time: 7:00 PM
Location: Chincoteague Museum (7125 Maddox Blvd)
Sponsor: Museum of Chincoteague
July 21 - July 23, 2017
Chincoteague Island Blueberry Festival
This is the largest Fine Arts & Crafts Event on the Eastern Shore of Virginia. Fresh blueberries and entertainment with friends and family is where it's at!
For more details: www.chincoteagueblueberryfestival.com.
Time: 9:00 AM - 4:30 PM
Location: The Chincoteague Center (6155 Community Drive)
Sponsor: The Chincoteague Center
July 24 - July 29, 2017
Chincoteague Volunteer Fireman's Carnival
Pizza, Boardwalk Fries, Clam & Oyster Fritters: all the best carnival foods. Come together with the community and enjoy all the carnival excitement, rides, food, and entertainment galore.
For more details: www.cvfc3.com.
Time: 7:00 PM - 11:00 PM
Location: Chincoteague Island Carnival Grounds
Sponsor: Chincoteague Volunteer Fire Company
July 28, 2017
Ponies Swim back to Assateague
The ponies make the return swim to Assateague Island. One of the best events that gives Chincoteague such unique character- this is a must-see.
For more details: www.chincoteague.com/pony_swim_guide.html.
Location: Memorial Park (7427 Memorial Park Drive)
Sponsor: Chincoteague Volunteer Fire Company
July 29, 2017
Chincoteague Island Farmer & Artisan Market
"The best from farm, field and bay." Come shop and sell at this local farmer's market while enjoying artisans, food, and music.
For more details: www.chincoteagueculturalalliance.org/chincoteague-island-farmers-market.html.
Time: 9:00 AM - 1:00 PM
Location: Chincoteague Cultural Alliance (6309 Church Street)
Sponsor: Chincoteague Cultural Alliance
For more local Chincoteague to-do's in July and the months to follow, check out http://chincoteague.com/events.html. These events color Chincoteague's community with laughter and fun that you don't quite get anywhere else.
When the summer hits, we love to spend as much time as possible outside enjoying the beautiful weather in our neighboring, charming town of Chincoteague. Not sure how to spend your next free summer day? From breakfast all the way to watching the sunset, we've mapped out the best way to spend a summer day on Chincoteague!
Start the day off right with a delicious breakfast from Chincoteague Diner and Restaurant. Sleep in a little bit? Don't worry, the full breakfast menu is available all day!
Morning Activity - Kayaking
After breakfast, head over to Snug Harbor Marina for a kayak rental, or for a guided eco tour through the Chincoteague and Assateague waterways. If you're a big fan of the local wild ponies, these kayak tours offers an amazing glimpse of them right from the marsh.
Worked up an appetite on the water? Grab a quick lunch at Pico Taqueria, our favorite local taco stand with a great variety of chicken, beef, fish, shrimp and even oyster tacos.
Afternoon Activity - Biking
Head over to the Bike Depot for bike rentals of beach cruisers, tandem bikes, kiddie karts and more. Explore downtown or take a more natural route through miles of trails on Chincoteague's National Wildlife Refuge.
For fresh, local seafood, head to one of our favorites: Don's Seafood Restaurant. Don's is located in the heart of downtown Chincoteague, with panoramic views of Chincoteague Channel. If you stick around late enough, head upstairs to Chatties Lounge, with music and dancing nightly and live entertainment on weekends.
After dinner take a very short walk to Robert Reed Waterfront Park for beautiful sunset views over the Chincoteague Bay.
Jun 15, 2017
We love to tune into the Food Network and watch Guy Fieri tour the best diners, drive-ins and dives around the country. We took a little of that Triple-D inspiration and headed out around Captain's Cove to find the best local diners, drive-ins and dives.
Mr. Baldy's Family Restaurant
3441 Ridge Rd | Chincoteague, VA
This friendly restaurant has great food and great service for breakfast lunch & dinner.
Chincoteague Diner & Restaurant
7085 Maddox Blvd | Chincoteague, VA
Stop by for lunch, dinner, or breakfast all day long, with a great deck filled with outdoor seating.
6382 Maddox Blvd. | Chincoteague, VA
Drive up to this local taco stand, with a unique menu that offers new flavors and combinations to try every time you visit.
6201 Maddox Blvd | Chincoteague, VA
For some of the best ice cream in the area, head to Mister Whippy's to enjoy your treat outside, or stay in the car and head through the drive-thru.
The Crab Shack
6560 Maddox Blvd | Chincoteague, VA
This small seafood shack serves a variety of seafood baskets, steamed crabs and shrimp, with plenty of outdoor seating.
Woody's Beach BBQ
6700 Maddox Blvd | Chincoteague, VA
This outdoor, beach-themed food shack serves BBQ and seafood with a casual surfer dude vibe.
When summertime arrives, we love spending time outside in the sun and the water. But it's important to protect yourself from the sun's harmful rays. Make it easy with these 8 tips and tricks.
Anything less than SPF 15 doesn't protect you enough from harmful sun rays, so ditch the tanning lotion. Ideally use SPF 30 or higher, and make sure it's labeled as "broad spectrum."
Reapply every two hours, and after swimming or sweating.
You may think you're covered if your makeup or moisturizer has SPF, but it's probably not enough. Unless it's broad spectrum and you're reapplying regularly, you'll need extra protection.
Don't wait to apply protecting once you're in the sun. Apply sunblock a half hour before going in the sun to give skin time to absorb it.
Check the expiration date. Sunblock generally has shelf life of three years, but that can be less if it's been exposed to high temperatures.
Protect your eyes with sunglasses with 99% UVA and UVB and keep your lips from getting burnt with lip balm that contains SPF.
Limit exposure between 10am-2pm, when the sun is at its strongest. When you're in the sun during those hours, protect your skin with clothing and a large hat.
While sprays may seem easiest, they can make it easy to miss spots. We recommend sticking to thicker formulas like cream lotions, so you can be sure you cover all exposed skin.
With these tips in mind, you'll stay sunburn-free and be able to have fun in the sun all summer long!
Every year, paint brands reveal their forecast for colors that will be trending in the coming year. In 2017, we have plenty to choose from, including soothing neutrals, rich dark tones, and bright pops of color. Here are our five favorite colors of the year, and our favorite ways to use them in 2017.
Benjamin Moore: Shadow
This shade couldn't be more different than last year's color, Simply White. The rich, dark purple exudes warmth, so we love it in the dining room where guests and family gather.
Sherwin-Williams: Poised Taupe
The last few years have been all about the neutrals when it comes to paint colors, and Sherwin-Williams has this to say about its color of the year: "This timeless neutral is modern, classic and a beautiful balance of warm and cool." This taupe color can work in any room of your home.
This robust teal color is part of Behr's 2017 color trends, 20 new limited edition colors. We think Wanderlust can make a beautiful, rich accent wall in a bedroom or living room.
Glidden: Byzantine Blue
This blue-purple hybrid color offers a sense of calm and tranquility, making it the perfect soothing shade for a bedroom.
Dunn-Edwards: Honey Glow
This golden yellow is a great choice for an accent wall in the living room or kitchen, adding a cheerful pop of color.
A fresh coat of paint can change a whole room and it's an easy DIY. Take advantage of the spring weather, open your windows, grab your paint brush and freshen up your home this weekend!
Springtime means it's officially soft shell crab season on the Chesapeake Bay and its surrounding waters! Keep reading to find out more about soft shell crabs, our favorite recipes and the best local restaurants that serve them.
Soft Shell Crabs
Soft shell crabs are blue crabs that are in their molted state. They're available from late spring to early fall, with May through September being some of the best months.
Crabbers can spot a crab that's about to molt by seeing the development of a line on the last leg, known as the paddler fin, that starts out white and progresses to pink and then red as it grows closer to molting. These crabs are harvested in this stage (the peeler stage) and they're held in special tanks until they shed their shells.
The actual shedding of the shell can take anywhere from one to three hours, and then the soft shells are removed from the water to prevent hardening of their shells before they are cooked and eaten.
Our Favorite Soft Shell Crab Recipes
From Handy Seafood in Salisbury, MD, this deep fried recipe will give you golden brown and crispy soft shells.
This recipe from MyRecipes calls for a light breading of flour, salt and pepper, cooked in a skillet over butter.
Local Restaurants Serving Soft Shells
Always serving up only the freshest local seafood, Ray's in menu includes local soft crabs when they're in season.
With a menu full of fresh local seafood, The Crusty Crab Shack offers up local soft shell crabs whenever they can catch them.
A Downtown Chincoteague staple since 1973, Don's serves soft shell crab entrees and sandwiches.
Preparing your home for spring isn't just about spring cleaning. We've rounded up 10 spring maintenance tips to get your home prepared for the warm season ahead.
Examine the roof for any broken shingles, and schedule an inspection if you see anything that doesn't look right.
Clean the gutters and make sure they're clear and ready to direct those April showers away from your home.
Examine the exterior of the chimney for any damage, and have the flue cleaned and inspected by a chimney sweep.
Prepare lawn equipment for the season by draining the old oil, replacing the air filter, and cleaning and sharpening blades.
Service your HVAC system by changing the filter, checking hoses for leaks, and vacuuming dust from the unit and connections.
Trim dead, overgrown branches or shrubs that might blow over in during a storm. Always keep healthy trees and bushes trimmed away from utility wires.
Check weather stripping on windows and doors to make sure that you're keeping warm summer air out and cool air in.
Repair small holes in screens of your windows and doors. It's great to let a cool breeze into your home; not so great to let the bugs in.
Switch ceiling fans to counter-clockwise, which pushes cool air down and creates a wind chill effect to cool you in the warmer months.
Replace batteries in your smoke detectors. This should be done twice a year, at the time change. If you missed it at Daylight Saving Time, do it now.
Springtime on Virginia's Eastern Shore is the perfect time to catch striped bass, tautog and flounder in the waters around Captain's Cove. We've rounded up the best ways to catch the peak fish of the spring, and the best recipes to serve them.
Striped bass are opportunistic feeders with a keen sense of smell. You'll have success with live bait like bloodworms, spot, clams and eel, or by trolling a tube and worm, imitating a large sandworm or a swimming eel.
Check out this recipe from Old Bay, Rockfish with Crab and Old Bay Cream Sauce. (And be on the lookout for the switch from Old Bay's traditional metal can to a new fully-recyclable BPA-free plastic late this summer.)
Tautog, a.k.a. Blackfish, tend to go back to the same places over and over, taking up residence in the rocky areas where they feed. They eat crustaceans, so you'll most likely have success with crabs, mussels, clams and sandworm.
One of our favorite tautog is recipes is this Parmesan Crusted Tautog with Herb-Lemon Sauce from My Fishing Cape Cod. This flaky, mild-flavored fish pairs well with the flavors of herbs and lemon.
Flounder tend to stay flat to the ground along ledges and drop-offs just a few feet deep. The best way to find these areas can be to wade around before you cast your line. Some of the best bait for flounder include
We love this Baked Flounder with Parmesan Crumbs recipe from Food and Wine. A simple coating of parmesan cheese and breadcrumbs is all it takes to make this fish delicious.
With a cold couple of days ahead, we headed to Pinterest to find 10 of the most pinned and most loved one pot dinner recipes to get you through (hopefully) the last of the cool weather of the season!
One Pot Garlic Butter Chicken, Green Beans & Potatoes from Yummy Healthy Easy
Pinned 128k times
One Pot Lasagna Soup from Carlsbad Cravings
Pinned 93.6k times
One Pot Chili Mac from Num's the Word
Pinned 93.2k times
One-Pan Chicken Thighs with Cilantro-Lime Black Bean Rice from Julia's Album
Pinned 79.3k times
One Pot Zucchini Mushroom Pasta from Damn Delicious
Pinned 76.9k times
One Pot Beef Stroganoff from Hip Foodie Mom
Pinned 57k times
One Pot Greek Chicken & Lemon Rice from RecipeTin Eats
Pinned 55.2k times
One Pot Chicken Teriyaki Bowls from Favorite Family Recipes
Pinned 35.7k times
One Skillet Sausage, White Bean, and Gnocchi from Chelsea's Messy Apron
Pinned 38.6k times
One Pot Creamy Chicken and Rice from I Heart Naptime
Pinned 15.5k times
It looks like spring has officially sprung almost 20 days early. Earlier than expected, it's suddenly time to get your garden ready for the season. Here are our top 9 tips for preparing your garden for an early spring.
1. First things first: Spring Cleaning. A good spring cleaning in the garden means removing leaves, digging out weeds, and cutting back vines and grasses.
2. Prepare your soil by tilling your garden area around 8 to 12 inches beneath the surface and removing any rocks or debris, then add organic matter and fertilizer.
3. In addition to organic material and fertilizer, you may want to add mulch to your flower beds. One to three inches of mulch can help prevent weeds and diseases, and keep moisture in the garden.
4. Clean leaves and debris from drainage areas. Spring seedlings do best in soil that drains well.
5. Test and adjust the pH. Most plants thrive in the 6.0 to 7.0 range, so a soil pH of 6.5 is ideal. A local test kit from a home improvement store can help you monitor your soil pH, and you can adjust it with these tips.
6. Add pavers and stepping stones. Once your garden is up and running, you need to be able to tend to your plants without trampling them down. A few well-placed stepping stones will make the job easier.
8. After cooking pasta or vegetables, use the excess (and cooled) water for your plants. Your garden will appreciate the extra vitamins and minerals.
9. Crush up egg shells and plant with them your seedlings to aid in healthy calcium levels.
It seems we may have skipped winter this year, and it's already time for spring cleaning. Living in Captain's Cove, you probably have plenty of outdoor recreation equipment for you to enjoy our amazing amenities like the marina, golf course, tennis courts and more. Keep reading for some of the best ways to organize your recreation equipment!
When it comes to storing your fishing equipment in the garage, there are some great DIY solutions. This PVC Organizer is an easy way to keep your fishing rods organized, and is customizable to fit however many you need. We also love this easy tutorial for a wooden fishing pole rack. Check out the video below.
As for the rest of your equipment, here's a great Beginner's Guide to Tackle Management.
Any avid golfer will know that a game of golf is all about pacing. You'll be thrown off if you have to spend time before every swing digging around your bag for the right club. Here's a great blog from Golfsmith on the best way to organize your golf bag.
With access to Captain Cove's tennis courts, basketball courts and more, there's probably plenty of sports equipment lying around your garage. We love these clever sports equipment storage solutions, with solutions like peg boards, a repurposed pallet, and a DIY rolling storage cart.
Whenever you're organizing recreation equipment, you'll probably find that some of it is just taking up extra space and it's time to be donated. Goodwill has a retail store in Salisbury, MD, and a drop-off location in Berlin, MD.
It's January: the holidays are over, you're back to the hustle of everyday life, and you're probably trying to keep a new year's resolution that seems unattainable. But we're here to help. From resolutions including being more active, more relaxed or just healthier, here are some of the best health and wellness centers near Captain's Cove to help you achieve them!
Pinder Massage Therapy
20441 Market Street, Onancock, VA
Here you'll find ultimate relaxation, with massage services including deep tissue, hot stone, injury treatment, stress management, and aromatherapy.
Level Up! Fitness
36154 Lankford Highway, Belle Haven, VA
This new gym offers classes in the mornings, afternoons and evenings, to help you kickstart your health on your own schedule.
21194 North Bayside Road, Cheriton, VA
Freestyle Yoga offers a variety of classes, including Gentle Stretch, Slow Flow, Yoga Basics and Basics for Men, all taught by an instructor with over 15 years of experience.
8 North St, Onancock, VA
If you think working out should be more like a party, this is the place for you. Classes here include Zumba, Zumba Toning, Zumba Sentao, Zumba Step, Zumba Gold, and Spin. You'll also find yoga, kickboxing, barre, and more.
Chincoteague Island Yoga
4391 Main St, Chincoteague, VA
Perfect for yogis of all skill levels, Chincoteague Island Yoga holds classes twice a week on Wednesday evenings and Saturday mornings overlooking the inlet on Chincoteague. When the weather warms up, classes are sometimes held outside!
It's getting cool on Virginia's Eastern Shore but that doesn't mean you should stay cooped up inside all winter. We've rounded up some of our favorite ways to get outside and stay active this winter.
Hiking the local beaches is a popular activity in the warmer months, but there's just something we love about the beaches during the winter. This is a great time for hiking and beachcombing with minimal crowds around some of Virginia Eastern Shore Tourism's favorite local beaches.
Seeing the Ponies
People love to head out to see the wild ponies of Assateague during the annual Pony Swim each summer. But winter is also a great time to visit the ponies when you'll find brisk, cool weather and fewer crowds. Check out this blog post from one of our favorite B&Bs, Miss Molly's Inn, about exactly where you can find the northern and southern pony herds during the winter months.
Not all birds fly south for the winter, and the cooler months can be a great time to go birding around Chincoteague National Wildlife Refuge. Check out their list of recent bird sightings to get an idea of the species you may glimpse on your next trip.
If you haven't winterized and stored your boat for the winter, this is a great time to head out fishing. Check out our blog post about where you can find striped bass during peak season around the waters of Captain's Cove.
Chincoteague is a popular spot for winter waterfowl hunting. Assateague and Chincoteague Islands are located within the 'Atlantic Flyway' migration route and they are popular wintering spots for a large variety of species. Learn more here about winter hunting and some of the best Chincoteague guides to help you with a successful hunting trip.
Dec 30, 2016
Will this be your lucky year? To help you ring in 2017, we've rounded up some of the best casinos where you can celebrate the new year!
Casino at Ocean Downs
There will be live entertainment all night long on New Year's Eve, as well as Double Bonus Prize Patrol where every 30 minutes a randomly selected player could win an assortment of cash prizes.
Harrington Raceway & Casino
With over 1700 slots, plenty of table games and a NYE Dance Party on the calendar, there will be no shortage of fun here on December 31.
The casino's Fire & Ice Lounge is featuring the band To The Max on New Year's Eve, with a huge variety of music, including '50s, '60s, '70s, '80s and today, swing, classical, waltz, jazz, pop, Hip Hop and R&B.
Maryland Live! Casino
Everyone's sure to be a winner here on New Year's Eve, where the giant jackpot is guaranteed to hit before the sun comes up and when it does, every slot player will get $25 free slot play.
Hollywood Casino Perryville
Celebrate here all day long, with prize drawings all day, surf & turf dinner reservations beginning at 3pm and live entertainment beginning at 10pm!
Enjoy live entertainment all weekend long, as you play 2,200 of the newest slots, including more than 150 video poker machines.
MGM National Harbor Casino
Oxon Hill, MD
Celebrate at MGM's brand new resort, with a casino, eight restaurants, several entertainment lounges and hotels with gorgeous National Harbor views.
Dec 09, 2016
It's holiday season on Virginia's Eastern Shore, with events all month long like Santa's arrival, free holiday movie viewings, and New Year's Eve celebrations!
Every holiday season, families head to Chincoteague for a calendar packed with fun, free holiday events. This weekend, attend the Children's Tea Party with Mrs. Claus. Then in just a few weeks, the big man himself will be visiting, stopping by the North Side of Chincoteague Island on the 20th and the South Side on the 21st.
On Friday nights throughout December, head to Cape Charles to do your Christmas shopping, as well as enjoy free, holiday fun. Upcoming Fridays will feature live music, visits with Santa, showing of favorite holiday movies like Elf and The Polar Express, kids crafts and more!
This weekend, Santa will arrive by boat, lead by his fleet of Kayak Reindeer. Following his arrival, head to the Holiday Open House at Ker Place for photos with Santa. On Sunday, the Hometown Christmas Parade of fire trucks, ponies, floats, bands and more will go down Market Street and through town.
This end of year celebration culminates in a promenade of crazy costumes just before the countdown to the stroke of midnight. This year's theme - Boots, Chaps & Cowboy Hats! Then the lighted horseshoe drops to ring in the New Year!
Ring in the new year in Cape Charles with the 3rd Annual Dropping the Crab Pot!
Nov 22, 2016
This Thanksgiving, ditch the classic turkey, stuffing and mashed potatoes and try a few dishes more reflective of our location on Virginia's Eastern Shore. We've rounded up some delicious Chesapeake-inspired Thanksgiving recipes, incorporating some of our favorite local foods like crab, oyster and duck. Happy Thanksgiving!
From the Chesapeake Bay Foundation's Director of Fisheries Bill Goldsborough, this stuffing recipe incorporates our favorite Chesapeake Bay seafood. Perfect timing right in the heart of oyster season.
This stuffing recipe incorporates another classic Chesapeake seafood, and was a finalist in the America's Best Stuffing recipe contest, sponsored by Delish and CountryLiving.com.
A delicious alternative to turkey, this roast duck recipe is perfect for Thanksgiving, which falls right in Virginia's duck hunting season.
Oysters, creamy sauce and a crispy topping: this dish is a southern staple and a must on an oyster-lover's Thanksgiving table.
Seafood skins are a classic dish on the Eastern Shore and a great Thanksgiving alternative to simple mashed potatoes.
Oct 24, 2016
It's almost Halloween! To help you celebrate the spookiest day of the year, we've rounded up some of the best Halloween events near Captain's Cove. Happy Halloween!
Halloween Costume Party at The Marina Restaurant
Friday October 28, 8-12 pm
This Halloween party with feature food and drink specials, live entertainment and prizes for scariest costume, most original and best group theme.
Halloween Party at Maddox Family Campground
Saturday October 29, 1-4 pm
Located in the pavilion at Maddox Family Campground, this party will have games, hay rides, and Halloween candy.
Trunk-or-Treat at Captain Cove's Cove Commons
Saturday October 29, 3-5 pm
There will be a costume contest for several age groups, in addition to family and pet, as well as a trunk decorating contest!
Halloween Activities at The Palace Theater in Cape Charles
Saturday October 29, 3 pm
Join in on a full day of Halloween activities, starting with trunk-or-treat in Cape Charles. At 7pm, get ready for a spooky Zombies performance at the theater, immediately followed by a Halloween party with live music, food and refreshments.
Trick-or-Treat Main Street in Chincoteague
Monday October 31, 4-7 pm
Come trick-or-treat at participating merchant locations along Chincoteague's Main Street!
Oct 03, 2016
Autumn is the season for apples, pumpkins and caramel. There's nothing better than when the sweet flavors of fall combine into a delicious dessert. We went to Pinterest to find some of the best fall desserts. Here they are!
Caramel Apple Cheesecake Bars
"These creamy cheesecake bars start with a shortbread crust, a thick cheesecake layer, and are topped with diced cinnamon apples and a sweet streusel topping."
Pumpkin Pecan Cobbler
"It's spicy, sweet, festive and gets thrown together in a snap.....This is like a pumpkin lava cake and cobbler love child."
Mini Pumpkin Pies
"Quick & Easy to make with a package of refrigerated pie crusts!"
"Moist and flavorful recipe for Apple Cider Cupcakes made from scratch with Brown Sugar Cinnamon Buttercream Frosting makes for a mouthwatering fall dessert!"
Pumpkin Cream Cheese Swirl Muffins
"These Pumpkin Cream Cheese Swirl Muffins are simple enough to put together and take 30 minutes or less to make. The sweet cream cheese on top adds a ton of flavor and I love how pretty they look."
Apple Pie Bites
"These incredibly delicious (and easy) Apple Pie Bites are going to be your go-to dessert in a hurry!"
Sep 28, 2016
Celebrate the autumn season with pumpkins, corn mazes and, of course, oysters. (After all, this is the Eastern Shore!) Here are some of the best seasonal events near Captain's Cove this fall!
Adkins Farm Market
Visit Adkins Farm Market in Salisbury to pick out your own pumpkin from the patch, and visit the play area complete with a 7-acre corn maze!
Of course fall means pumpkins and corn mazes, but here it also means oysters. Chincoteague Island is kicking off oyster season with its annual oyster festival featuring fresh, local oysters; clam fritters; clam chowder; hush puppies; salad bar; and hot dogs; as well as live entertainment and an Extravaganza Raffle.
October 22-23 & 29-30
Ocean City is getting into the Halloween spirit for two weekends. Free family events include a Giant Halloween Beach Maze, Howl-O-Ween Pet Parade and the Great Pumpkin Race.
After a two year break, World Championship Punkin Chunkin is coming back to Bridgeville, DE, the weekend after Halloween. The event features 9 different categories, a pageant and live music.
Punkin Chunkin Cooking Contests
Fall officially begins this week, and over the next month, beautiful fall foliage will be popping up all over the state. Here are 3 great fall road trips where you can see the colors of the season!
Skyline Drive is possibly the most famous scenic drive in the country, and it's easy to see why. This 105-mile scenic byway traverses the entire length of Shenandoah National Park and offers gorgeous panoramic views, with a speed limit of only 35 mph and 75 scenic overlooks.
Expanding on the beauty of Skyline Drive, just to the south is the Blue Ridge Parkway: 469 miles between the Shenandoah National Park in Virginia and the Great Smoky Mountains National Park in North Carolina.
Aug 22, 2016
In a blog post last month, we highlighted some of the best breweries near Captain's Cove. Now, check out one of these great wineries and vineyards!
Chatham Vineyards on Church Creek
9232 Chatham Rd | Machipongo, VA 23405
Tasting Room Hours:
Open Daily 10 am - 5 pm April - December
Closed Tuesdays & Wednesdays January - March
Winning wine: 2014 Church Creek Vintner's Blend -- "A classic Bordeaux-style blend with a Merlot base that brings elegant fruit flavors, Cabernet Franc that contributes complexity and herbal notes, and Petit Verdot for ripeness, deep color and fresh acidity. This wine was barrel-aged for 12 months in 30% new French oak."
Bordeleau Vineyards & Winery
3155 Noble Farm Rd | Eden, Maryland 21822
Tasting Room Hours:
Wednesday-Saturday 12 - 6 pm
Monday and Tuesday: by appointment only (min. 8 people)
Winning wine: 2 Meritage -- "Enjoy this classic Bordeaux Style blend made from wines selected from our barrels with the highest scores. This blend was aged in a combination of French and American oak barrels for more than 24 months. This wine exhibits layers of black cherry, black raspberry and currants gently melded with light oak tannins. Our blend consists of 50% Merlot, 30% Cabernet Sauvignon, 10% Malbec and 10% Petit Verdot."
9031 Whaleyville Rd | Whaleyville, MD 21872
Tasting Room Hours:
Friday-Sunday from 12-6 pm
Winning wine: Assawoman Bay Chardonnay -- "This clear, pale straw colored Chardonnay is reminiscent of the smells of country life: apple, spiced apple, with hints of dried herb, toast and linden. Think of plucking a big green apple and savoring the taste; you'll find this crispness in the wine, along with citrus and apricot. Grapefruit and lemon are on the finish."
Layton's Chance Winery
4225 New Bridge Rd | Vienna, MD 21869
Tasting room hours:
Monday - Thursday: 11 am - 5 pm
Friday & Saturday: 11 am - 6 pm
Sunday: 12 - 5 pm
Winning wine: Lazy Day White -- "Traminette grape similar to a sweet Riesling. Honeysuckly, jasmine, apricot."
Experiencing drops and loops on a huge roller coaster or plunging down a slide in a water park... what better way is there to spend a summer day than in an amusement park? With one month left of summer, here are our top amusement parks near Captain's Cove.
Distance from Captain's Cove: 2 hours, 30 minutes
Highlights: 6 roller coasters, 12 adventure rides, 3 water rides, 11 kids rides, live shows and summer fireworks; right around the corner from Water Country USA, Virginia's largest water park with 16 attractions
Craziest coaster: Apollo's Chariot, with a drop of 210 feet and speeds reaching 73 mph, consistently voted one of the top 10 steel coasters in the world
Six Flags America
Upper Marlboro, MD
Distance from Captain's Cove: 2 hours, 30 minutes
Highlights: 13 thrill rides, 13 family rides, 17 kids rides, a full water park with 15 rides, live entertainment
Craziest coaster: Superman: Ride of Steel with a 208-foot drop and a max speed of 74 mph, all on 5,400 feet of twisting red track. Now available with a headset to immerse you in a virtual reality experience
Distance from Captain's Cove: 3 hours, 30 minutes
Highlights: 18 thrill rides, 14 family rides, Planet Snoopy kids area, Soak City water park, Dinosaurs Alive interactive experience, live entertainment
Craziest coaster: Intimidator 305 features a 300-foot drop at an 85-degree angle and reaches speeds of 90 mph
Distance from Captain's Cove: 4 hours
Highlights: 13 roller coasters, 29 family rides, 20 kids rides, The Boardwalk at Hershey Park with 15 water rides and slides, live entertainment
Craziest coaster: Fahrenheit, a steel coaster that climbs 121 feet before plummeting down a 97-degree drop
Jun 14, 2016
It's crab season on the Eastern Shore, and what goes together better than crabs and beer? Grab a delicious craft beer from one of our favorite breweries.
Evolution Craft Brewing Company
200 Elmwood Street, Salisbury, MD
The tasting room and The Public House Restaurant are open daily, and tours are available at set times Friday - Sunday.
Must-try brew: Pine'hop'le IPA -- "Brewed with loads of pineapple juice and aggressively hopped to contribute big tropical and citrus notes."
Burley Oak Brewing Company
10016 Old Ocean City Blvd., Berlin MD
The Taproom has a calendar packed with fun events, like game nights, live music and Sunday Funday.
Must-try brew: Lost IPA -- the brewery is bringing back this fan favorite IPA for one day only, this Saturday, July 16. Only 25 cases will be available so be sure to pick one up!
Tall Tales Brewing Company
6929 Heron Grove Court, Parsonburg, MD
The brewery restaurant serves up a diverse menu, including wood-fired pizza oven, and has live music on the weekends.
Must-try brew: Some Beach Island Ale -- "A light bodied Blonde Ale infused with Pineapple and Orange. This brew is very lightly hopped with a smooth tropical flavor."
Assawoman Bay Brewing Company
45th Street Village, Ocean City MD
Stop by for a free brewery tour at 12 and 2 pm Monday-Friday (or by appointment on weekends), and then head over to the brew pub for a delicious meal with a bay view.
Must-try brew: Pony Swim IPA -- "This is a true IPA, a malt backbone gets bent over by a huge hop finish.... Look for whole peppercorn aromas and flavors with hints of garlic to balance the citrus notes."
Ocean City Brewing Company
56th Street & Coastal Highway, Ocean City, MD
This is a full scale operation with a craft brewery and distillery, a family restaurant, sports pub, and a gift shop. Brewery and distillery tours are offered daily. (Check out their delicious Beach Vodkas in the distillery!)
Must-try brew: Orange Crush -- "Orange Crush is direct from the citrus farm. This wheat beer is infused with fresh whole oranges.... A true taste of the beach!"
Backshore Brewing Company
10th Street on the Boardwalk, Ocean City, MD
Take a break from walking on the boards to stop by the beachside brew pub, open daily. They change flavors often, so there's always something new to try on tap.
Must-try brew: Boardwalk Blonde -- "An easy drinking, light, & tasty blonde ale with subtle fruitiness."
3rd Wave Brewing Company
501 N. Bi-State Blvd, Delmar, DE
Located right on the Maryland-Delaware line in "The Little Town Too Big for One State," 3rd Wave is small but mighty, producing 5 house beers year round and a variety of seasonal beers. The brewery is open daily, with the Backyard BBQ food truck available on the weekends.
Must-try brew: SandStorm Belgian Tripel -- "Smooth and creamy with a hazy light golden color. Hints of banana and clove from the yeast along with the spicy/woodsy hop flavors prevail up front, giving way to a subdued sweetness in the finish."
Jun 30, 2016
Virginia's Eastern Shore is home to many unique habitats, with beaches, marshes, and protected areas for wildlife and plants. Explore our unique area with these best hiking areas near Captain's Cove.
Assateague Island National Seashore
Assateague Island has a variety of paved and unpaved trails open for hiking, as well as 37 miles of beach to wander. The Maryland side of the island has 1 1/2 miles of trails and the Virginia side has almost 15 miles of trails, where you'll be sure to catch a glimpse of the wildlife that calls the island home, including of course the famous Chincoteague Ponies. Make a weekend out of it by camping at one of the campsites on the Maryland side of the island, where sites run $30 per night and have running water. Get more info here.
Mutton Hunk Fen Natural Area Preserve
On the sea side of Accomack County, this 412-acre Natural Area Preserve is surrounded by Gargathy Bay to the east and Whites Creek to the north. It is one of only four sea-level fen communities in Virginia. Sea-level fens are open, freshwater wetlands located between uplands and wide, oceanside tidal marshes. The low nutrient content of the groundwater and the acidic conditions of the soil strongly influence the types of plants found in sea-level fens; five state-rare plant species occur here. Explore this unique habitat with two walking trails - one to the marsh overlooking Gargathy Bay and one along White's creek. Learn more here.
Kiptopeke State Park
This bay-front park is 562 acres and features over 5 miles of walking and biking trails. This is a great birding location, as the coastal habitat is a major flyway for migratory birds. The park also has many options for campers, with six-bedroom lodges, RV and tent camping, a yurt (part cabin-part tent), camping trailers and a bunkhouse. There is a boat ramp, lighted fishing pier, picnic areas, playground, beach bathhouse and swimming beach with calm, shallow water. More info here.
Eastern Shore of Virginia National Wildlife Refuge
Located at the tip of the Delmarva Peninsula, the Eastern Shore of Virginia NWR offers the chance to see the area's wildlife up close with several different trails. Walk the ½-mile Butterfly Trail; try the 2.6 mile Bike & Hike trail, with opportunities for wildlife observation and photography; or, walk the ½-mile Wildlife Trail, which loops through mixed hardwoods, past an old cemetery, and out to the saltmarsh overlook. Climb to the top of a WWII bunker for a breathtaking view of refuge marshes, barrier islands, bays, inlets, and the Atlantic Ocean.
Come back in the fall, when the Eastern Shore of Virginia NWR, one of the most important avian migration funnels in North America, is the scene of millions of songbirds and monarch butterflies and thousands of raptors converging on their voyage south. Learn more here.
Jun 13, 2016
Every year, Chincoteague hosts several iconic summer events including the Volunteer Fireman's Carnival, Blueberry Festival, the world famous Pony Swim, and more. Here are our top events to check out in Chincoteague this summer.
Chincoteague Volunteer Fireman's Carnival
Enjoy this annual tradition of rides, games, food, and much more! Dates for this year's carnival are: June 24- 25, July 1- 2, 4, 8- 9, 15- 16, 22- 30 from 7-11pm.
Summer Cinema Series
On five Thursday evenings throughout the summer, catch a movie outdoors under the stars in Robert Reed Downtown Waterfront Park. Just bring a chair or blanket! Films begin at dusk on June 30, July 14, July 28, August 11 and August 25. See the movie schedule here.
Music at the Dock
Several Saturday evenings this summer enjoy free concerts held in Robert Reed Park. Just bring a chair or blanket, or dock your boat! The fun starts on July 2 with the Salisbury Community Band, followed by concerts on August 6 and 27. See the lineup here.
Independence Day Fireworks
The Chincoteague Volunteer Fireman's Carnival will be open on the 4th of July at 7pm with rides, games, and food, and the fireworks will begin at approximately 10pm.
Chincoteague Island Blueberry Festival
The 31st Annual Blueberry Festival will be July 22-24, and it's the largest Fine Arts & Crafts Event on the Eastern Shore of Virginia. You'll find 100+ fine artists and crafters from 12 states, live music, delicious food and, of course, lots and lots of blueberries!
91st Annual Pony Swim
In this world-famous event, see the Chincoteague Ponies swim from Assateague Island to Chincoteague Island. See our blog post from last year's Pony Penning for a complete guide of the week's events. This year's Pony Penning stars with the Pony Roundup on the 23-24th, Beach Walk on the 25th, Pony Swim on the 27th and Auction on the 28th. The carnival is open every night during pony penning week.
If you're looking to spend a day out on the water but don't have a boat of your own, here are the best boat rentals near Captain's Cove. Motor boats, pontoons, kayaks, fishing rods, bait, and crabbing and clamming equiptment; these shops have everything you need to spend a beautiful day exploring the waters of the Chincoteague Bay!
Captain Bob's offers both 8 and 15 HP motor boats for either all-day or afternoon rentals, all of which include a fishing license and all safety equipment. They also offer naked (non-motor) boats. All of the fishing equipment you need is available to rent, including inshore fishing rods, surf rods, crab pots and clam rakes, as well as slip rentals and dry storage. The tackle shop has all of the live and frozen bait you need. You can also book charters for fishing, clamming, nature tours and for a front row seat of the famed Pony Swim!
Snug Harbor has plenty of boats available to rent, including Carolina Skiffs, Console Boats, Canoes, Kayaks and Pontoon Boats. Rental prices include a fishing license and life jackets. Looking for a guided tour? They offers Kayak Eco Tours throughout Chincoteague and Assateague waterways, where you can see the famous ponies, wild birds and sometimes even dolphins. Snug Harbor also runs a hotel, offering waterfront cottages overlooking Assateague Island and the Chincoteague National Wildlife Refuge.
East Side Rentals has large (9 person) and small (6 person) pontoon boats available to rent, fishing license included. The full service marina has everything you need, including fuel, fish cleaning tables, a bait & tackle shop with live bait in-season, as well as floating docks and boat slips. They also offer waterfront vacation rentals - apartments, cottages, and a condominium located on the Assateague Channel and overlooking the iconic Assateague Lighthouse. Each unit rental includes a private boat slip. Just bring yourself and your boat!
May 13, 2016
If you are craving a weekend getaway in a place dubbed one of the Most Charming Beach Towns and one of the Happiest Seaside Towns, you don't need to go far. Chincoteague's quaint downtown area, charming Bed and Breakfasts and adorable ponies have made it a go-to destination for a quiet and relaxing weekend getaway. Here are our favorite B&Bs in Chincoteague for your next weekend away.
Island Manor House
4160 Main Street, Chincoteague
This historic B&B circa 1848 has nine guest bedrooms and four comfortable common rooms, and it is fully air conditioned and has wireless internet access. They will also provide everything you need for a day at the beach.
Channel Bass Inn
6228 Church Street, Cincoteague
This Bed & Breakfast and Tea Room sits among gorgeous perennial gardens, with large and comfortable guest rooms, each with their own sitting area and private bathroom. Well behaved pets are also welcome! Afternoon tea is served most days, and guests can enjoy a special rate.
Garden and Sea Inn
4188 Nelson Road, New Church
This Victorian B&B sits on four beautifully landscaped acres and offers a swimming pool and lush gardens to relax in. Each room has a private bath (most with whirlpool tubs), air conditioning, television/DVD player, coffee maker and refrigerator.
Miss Molly's Inn
4141 Main Street, Chincoteague
Miss Molly's is a seven bedroom Victorian B&B, minutes from shops, restaurants, and more on Main Street. It has five porches, rocking chairs, loungers and a hammock on the large second floor deck overlooking the working bay.
The Watson House
4240 Main Street, Chincoteague
The Watson house offers cozy guests rooms with antique furnishings, private baths and air conditioning. They offer everything you need to enjoy the outdoors including beach cruiser bikes, beach chairs, & binoculars.
Apr 30, 2016
Virginia's Eastern Shore is home to many beautiful beaches. Whether you're looking to explore a quaint town's local shops or explore a remote island, it's nearby. Here are our favorite beaches near Captain's Cove.
Assateague Island National Seashore
Distance to Captain's Cove: 25 minutes
With its beautiful beaches, wild ponies, and quaint town of Chincoteague, of course, this is our Number 1. Enjoy many activities such as sightseeing cruises, kayak tours, crabbing, bird watching, fishing, hunting, biking and more.
You can't think of Assateague without thinking of the famous Pony Swim in the end of July. Learn more about it from our past blog post here.
Distance to Captain's Cove: 45 minutes to the ferry in Onancock, 1 hour ferry ride
Tangier Island was recently named one of 2016's Best Trips by National Geographic. After an hour long ferry ride, explore the island by foot, bike or boat. You can't leave the island without having a soft shell crab; after all, it is the Tangier Island is the self proclaimed "soft-shell crab capital" in the nation.
Distance to Captain's Cove: 1 hour, 20 minutes
Beach-goers here love the clear and calm waters. The water is shallow, making it a perfect location for kids and families. While you're in Cape Charles, be sure to grab a pic next to the LOVE statue!
Kiptopeke State Park
Distance to Captain's Cove: 1 hour, 30 minutes
If you're looking to go camping for the weekend, this is the place for you. The park has lodges, RV and tent camping, a yurt (part cabin-part tent), camping trailers and a bunkhouse. You can also enjoy the park's boat ramp, fishing pier, picnic areas, 5.1 miles of hiking and biking trails, playground, beach bathhouse and swimming beach. More info here.
Apr 15, 2016
Spring has finally sprung, and it's hopefully here to stay! This season, brighten up your home with one of these easy spring DIY projects!
See the tutorial here.
See how here.
Bottle Vase Centerpiece
See full instructions here.
Decoupaged Terra Cotta Pots
See how here.
Painted Daisy Mason Jars
Get instructions here.
Painted Bud Vases
See how here.
Get instructions here.
See how here.
Mar 30, 2016
We love to hit the green at the beautiful Captain's Cove Golf Course, but sometimes there's just something special about hitting a lime green ball through a windmill and into a clown's mouth. These are the best mini-golf courses near Captain's Cove.
Refuge Golf/ Funland Amusements
Children will love that the mini-golf course is lined with animal statues. After you're finished your round of golf, the fun continues with go karts, a rock wall, bumper boats and more.
Surfside Golf offers two course options, easy and challenging, each with 18 holes. Perfect for players of all skill levels!
Old Pro Mini Golf
Ocean City, MD
This one is further away but for the real mini golf enthusiasts, Old Pro is consistently considered the best mini golf in OC. Choose from four themed outdoor locations, as well as two indoor locations: 23rd Street- Temple of the Dragon (Outdoor); 28th Street- Renaissance Castle (Outdoor); 68th Street- Prehistoric Dinosaur (Outdoor) and Undersea Adventure (Indoor); 136th Street- Caribbean Pirates (Outdoor) and Safari Village (Indoor).
* Join Union Craft Brewing on April 16th as they host a tournament style golf event with a special release of two limited edition Chardonnay Barrel-aged Older Pro variants (Italian Plum & Boysenberry) and our regular classic Old Pro cans available to-go. Your registration includes golf and all-you-care-to-drink UNION cans. Food will be available for purchase. 21+ Details Here
Mar 10, 2016
When the warm weather hits, some of us are content to spend a quiet day out on the boat with a fishing pole. But others might need a little more adrenaline-pumping action to be happy, like barreling through the sky at 120mph. If that's you, read on; here are 5 Extreme Outdoor Activities near Captain's Cove.
Skydive OC in Berlin, MD
A plane will take you up to 18,000 feet in the air, where you and your instructor will jump out, freefall for 40-90 seconds, and then open the parachute and slowly drift back down to the ground. No big deal.
Virginia Hang Gliding in Painter, Va
Go up to 5,300 feet in the air above the Eastern Shore, where you can then float peacefully back to the ground or opt for heart-pounding aerobatics.
Water Propelled Jetpack
Relentless Watersports in Ocean City, MD
After a short training session, strap on a jetpack and the water will propel you into the air. Short on jetpacking experience? No worries - you'll receive one-on-one coaching via the safety helmet speaker.
OC Parasail in Ocean City, MD
You will be towed up to 800 feet above the boat, with beautiful Ocean City skyline views, as well as possible dolphin and stingray sightings.
Top Gun Water Sports in Berlin, MD
Start with a guided wave runner tour along the Assateague Island inner coastline, where you may be able to glimpse the famous Assateague ponies, ending at the 4 square mile unrestricted riding area where you can go up to 50+ mph.
Mar 02, 2016
After some glimpses of warm weather over the past few weeks, it's official: We have Spring Fever. It's almost time to get your boat out of storage and ready to hit the water. Here are 6 musts of de-winterizing your boat.
Change your oil if you didn't before storing your boat for the winter, as well as the outdrive oil. While you're in there, replace the oil filter.
Re-attach battery cables and make sure terminals are not corroded. Use a battery tester to check the volts and amps. If your battery takes water, make sure it is full. A dry battery is a bad battery.
You should have drained the cooling system before storing your boat for the winter, so fill it back up and check the hoses for cracks.
Hopefully you topped off the fuel before storing your boat for the winter to prevent any moisture forming in the tank. Change the fuel filter, and confirm that the fuel line is attached and free of cracks.
Clean out the distributor by removing the distributor cap and cleaning out any corrosion that may have occurred over the winter.
Make sure all belts are tight and don't need replacement. When you press down on the belts, there should only be a little bit of give; otherwise, it needs to be replaced. Another thing to look for is soot near the pulleys. Soot means worn belts that need replacement.
Be sure to check your boat's manual for all of the specifics of boat maintenance, and get ready for warm days out on the water!
Feb 10, 2016
Just a few days from the most romantic weekend of the year, we've rounded up a few ways you can celebrate near Captian's Cove and Chincoteague. Happy Valentine's Day!
It doesn't get more romantic than an 180-degree view of the sun setting over the Chincoteague Bay. Combine that with a special Valentine's Day menu full of fresh local seafood, and you have an evening to remember.
Bill's is a Chincoteague staple that has been serving breakfast, lunch and dinner since 1960. This weekend, order from their special Valentine's Day menu, featuring the freshest local seafood and hand cut steaks.
You don't have to travel far to find the romance! The Marina Restaurant is hosting a romantic Saturday night filled with delicious eats, delightful drinks and entertainment!
Do you love delicious food, good conversation, and trivia? Then, get "WILD" on Valentines Day Weekend and join us for our annual "Nature Lovers Dinner & Trivia". Enjoy a gourmet buffet-style dinner complete with appetizers, desserts, beer, and wine!
A family owned and operated florist in Chincoteague, that serves Greenbackville as well as much of the surrounding area and offers same-day delivery on many of their bouquets.
*Another great Florist option is the online florist The Bouqs, which offers beautiful farm-fresh flowers at a flat rate that includes shipping!
Daisey's runs cruises year-round, so bundle up for a romantic sunset cruise (at a discount because it's the off-season!). You'll get to see the ponies while they have their thick winter coats, and Daisey's says "seeing the ponies in the snow and ice is a truly unique and beautiful experience."
Jan 29, 2016
It's winter, but that doesn't mean you have to be stuck inside for months. Winter camping definitely has its perks: solitude, no bugs and a beautiful snowy view. Here are 10 tips for your winter camping adventure.
Block the wind
You'll want to set up your tent in a spot that's protected from the wind. Hang up a tarp between two trees to block the wind, which will keep you warmer and make it easier to start a fire.
Pack the snow
Pack down the snow where you will set up your tent. This will help you avoid stepping into a soft spot and ripping a hole in the floor of your tent. It will also make it more comfortable to sleep, as the ground will remain firm and you won't have to readjust the soft snow when you want to switch sleeping positions.
Say NO to cotton
Your layers should be made of wool or synthetic materials, which are much better suited to camping in cold weather. Avoid cotton, since it loses its insulating qualities when it gets wet, from snow or sweat, and takes a long time to dry.
Adjust your layers
Shed your top layer as soon as you start feeling warm, as sweat will make you freezing cold once it starts to evaporate. Put on an extra layer before you stop moving and cool off so that your body won't have to work hard to warm back up.
Don't constrict your hands and feet
Make sure your boots and gloves aren't too tight, as that will restrict blood flow and only make you colder.
Sleep with the next day's clothes
Getting out of your sleeping bag in the winter cold is hard enough without having to pull on cold clothes. Sleep with your clothes for the next day in your sleeping bag so they are warm when you wake up and get dressed.
Sunscreen and sunglasses
Don't forget them! The snow is highly reflective, so you'll need to protect your eyes and any exposed skin.
Extra hats and gloves
You may lose them, or they could get wet. You can't go without these essentials, so play it safe and pack extra.
Keep water bottles upside down
This way the water at the bottom of the bottle will freeze first, and you will still have drinkable liquid on the top.
Prepare for the long night
Nights are long in the winter, so bring a flashlight or headlamp with plenty of batteries, as well as some activities to keep you entertained in the dark hours.
Of course, this is by no means everything you need to know for winter camping. Come prepared, make sure you have the right gear and stay safe! Check out this expert advice on winter camping from REI to learn more.
Jan 15, 2016
As the winter weather is not ideal for boating, golfing or hiking, it's the perfect season to curl up with a good book. Here are 8 of the top books to grab this winter. Mysteries, romance, and celebrity memoirs... we've got it all.
If you like fiction, try...
The Nightingale by Kristin Hannah
Amazon says: The Nightingale tells the stories of two sisters, separated by years and experience, by ideals, passion and circumstance, each embarking on her own dangerous path toward survival, love, and freedom in German-occupied, war-torn France--a heartbreakingly beautiful novel that celebrates the resilience of the human spirit and the durability of women.
If you like mysteries, try...
The Girl on the Train by Paula Hawkins
Amazon says: A debut psychological thriller that will forever change the way you look at other people's lives. Compulsively readable, The Girl on the Train is an emotionally immersive, Hitchcockian thriller and an electrifying debut.
If you like fantasies, try...
A Knight of the Seven Kingdoms by George R. R. Martin
Amazon says: Taking place nearly a century before the events of A Game of Thrones, A Knight of the Seven Kingdoms compiles the first three official prequel novellas to George R. R. Martin's ongoing masterwork, A Song of Ice and Fire.
If you like romance, try...
Grey: Fifty Shades of Grey as Told by Christian by E L James
Amazon says: In Christian's own words, and through his thoughts, reflections, and dreams, E L James offers a fresh perspective on the love story that has enthralled millions of readers around the world.
If you like biographies, try...
The Wright Brothers by David McCullough
Amazon says: Two-time winner of the Pulitzer Prize David McCullough tells the dramatic story-behind-the-story about the courageous brothers who taught the world how to fly: Wilbur and Orville Wright.
If you like memoirs, try...
Between the World and Me by Ta-Nehisi Coates
Amazon says: In a profound work that pivots from the biggest questions about American history and ideals to the most intimate concerns of a father for his son, Ta-Nehisi Coates offers a powerful new framework for understanding our nation's history and current crisis.
If you like celebrity memoirs, try...
Why Not Me? by Mindy Kaling
Amazon says: Mindy turns the anxieties, the glamour, and the celebrations of her second coming-of-age into a laugh-out-loud funny collection of essays that anyone who's ever been at a turning point in their life or career can relate to.
If you like art and photography, try...
Humans of New York: Stories by Brandon Stanton
Amazon says: In the summer of 2010, photographer Brandon Stanton began an ambitious project —to single-handedly create a photographic census of New York City.... Now, Brandon is back with the follow up to Humans of New York that his loyal followers have been waiting for.
As we look ahead toward colder weather (if it ever comes...), you may be thinking it's time to winterize your boat and put it away for the season. But for those of us who just can't go months without being out on the water, don't worry. Winter means it's striped bass season in Virginia.
According to the Virginia Marine Resources Commission, Striped Bass' peak months are September - January, and again in May - June, with the peak for large fish in November and December.
Seventy to 90 percent of the Atlantic striped bass population spawns in the Chesapeake Bay, making it a prime fishing spot during striper season. Young bass will stay in the waters where they are born until they reach a length of about 30 inches. After that, they become migrators.
In the spring warm weather, stripers migrate north to New England for cooler water. Then in the fall, most of the migrating stripers end up back down in the deeper waters off of the VA and NC coasts, where they spend the winter, while some of the population winters in the Bay.
Striped Bass are can be found in all coastal inshore and Chesapeake Bay waters, and along the Assateague surf in late fall and early spring. Large stripers are most often found along Chesapeake Bay Bridge Tunnel, the main portion of Chesapeake Bay and off the Virginia Capes at the mouth of the Bay.
So shake off those winter blues and get fishing!
Dec 17, 2015
Although is doesn't feel like it outside, we are just about a week away from the official start of winter and temperatures will be dropping soon. If you're missing being out on the water like us, relieve your winter blues by getting out on the snow instead. Here are the four best ski resorts within driving distance to Captain's Cove.
2,925 peak elevation with 1,110 vertical drop, 70 skiable acres, 2 terrain parks and snow tubing at the Family Adventure Park.
Distance from Captain's Cove: 5 hours
125 skiable acres, 26 runs, and two terrain parks. Plus, go tubing, iceskating or play in the snow at Ridgely's Fun Park.
Distance from Captain's Cove: 5 hours
Omni Homestead Resort
Hot Springs, VA
Ski or snowboard on over 45 acres, or go ice skating and tubing at the Penguin Slides Tubing Park.
Distance from Captain's Cove: 6 hours
8 runs and a terrain park, with a peak elevation of 1750. Plus go snow tubing down the 800-foot tubing lanes.
Distance from Captain's Cove: 4 hours, 45 minutes
Nov 19, 2015
We are about to enter holiday season and a calendar full of spirited holiday events. We've rounded up a list of the best events near Captain's Cove to get you in the holiday spirit!
Captain's Cove Events
Kids Christmas Party
Location: Captain's Cove Community Room
Time: December 5; 4 - 6 pm
Tree Lighting & Caroling
Location: Captain's Cove Town Center
Time: December 5; 6 pm
7th Annual Christmas Show
Location: Captain's Cove Marina Club Banquet Room
Time: December 17 & 18; 6:30 pm
Annual Tree Lighting
Location: Robert Reed Downtown Mark
Time: November 28; 5 pm
Home for the Holidays Tour
Time: December 5; 11 am - 4 pm
Old Fashioned Christmas Parade
Location: Main Street
Time: December 5; 7 pm
The Great Gingerbread Challenge
Location: Chincoteague Center
Time: December 6; 1 - 3 pm
Chincoteague's Christmas by the Sea is full of even more fun holiday events. Find out more here!
Nov 13, 2015
It can be stressful to plan an entire holiday party, including the menu, guest list and table settings. But it doesn't have to be! Here are 8 holiday entertaining tips to make your celebrations smoother.
What are you making, who's coming, and who is bringing what? Plan all of this out days to weeks in advance, giving yourself less of a chance of scrambling on the day of. Here is a great Thanksgiving planner from Martha Stewart to keep you organized and relaxed.
Make anything you can ahead of time
You can make the pie dough in advance and freeze it to be used when you're baking. Anything that you can make ahead of time is one less thing on your plate in crunch time.
Do whatever you can the night before
Set the table, lay out serving dishes, and set up centerpieces and decorations. This will save you time and stress while you're doing everything else that has to be done on the day of the party.
Set up a separate drink area
Set up a separate bar area with cups, drinks, ice, garnish and everything your guests will need. Put your bar away from the appetizers and buffet to keep everyone spread out.
Dress up the table
Make the table festive, but keep it simple with centerpieces that aren't overwhelmingly huge and keep it to one color scheme. Here are some easy options from Midwest Living.
Line the kids table with brown kraft paper and set out crayons. Super easy to clean up and it will keep your younger guests entertained while they wait for dessert.
Serve festive drinks
Get guests in the mood with fun fall and Thanksgiving inspired cocktails. Here's a great selection from All Recipes.
A plate might break or someone might spill. And that's ok. Just enjoy having your family and friends around and don't sweat the small stuff.
Oct 15, 2015
Halloween night is just a few weeks away, and that means it's time to serve treats with spiders and googly eyes. We've rounded up some of our favorite Halloween recipes to plan out your perfect Halloween dinner.
Halloweeño Jalapeño Popper Mummies from The Hopeless Housewife
- 10 jalapeño peppers, sliced in half lengthwise and pith/ seeds removed (use rubber gloves so your hands don't burn from the jalapeño). Leave the stem if you can on some or all of the halves.
- 8 ounces cream cheese, room temperature
- 8 ounces jack cheese, shredded
- 1 scallion (green onion), finely chopped
- ½ teaspoon salt
- 1 package refrigerated crescent rolls
- 2 eggs, beaten
- candy eyeballs
- Preheat oven 400° F. In a small bowl, mix the cream cheese, jack cheese, scallion and salt until well blended.
- Roll out the crescent rolls and separate into 4 rectangles (not triangles) with a perforation in the middle of each. Press your fingers into the perforations to seal them. Using a pizza cutter, cut each rectangle into 10 long pieces lengthwise.
- Fill each jalepeño half with the cheese mixture. Wrap each jalapeño half with the dough, leaving a space for the eyes. Use two pieces of dough if necessary. Brush with egg mixture and place on baking sheet.
- Bake in oven for 8-10 minutes. Remove from the oven and press the eyes into the cheese where the opening is. Serve immediately.
Spiderweb Pizza from Woman's Day
- 1 package prebaked mini 8-in pizza crusts
- ⅓ c. pizza sauce
- 2 (1 oz each) mozzarella string cheese
- 3 large pitted black olives
- Heat oven to 450°F. Place crusts on a baking sheet; top with sauce. Pull cheese into thin strips; place on pizzas in the shape of a web.
- Bake pizza for 8 to 10 minutes until cheese melts. Cool 3 minutes.
- Cut off one end of 2 olives for spider heads. Halve remaining olives lengthwise. Use one half for body; cut remaining pieces into strips for legs. Assemble spider on each pizza.
Frankenstein Rice Krispie Treats from Big Bear's Wife
- 3 tablespoons butter
- 10 oz marshmallows
- 6 cups rice krispie cereal
- 10 drops yellow food coloring
- 10 drops blue food coloring
- Melted Chocolate/Candy Coating
- Candy Eyes
- Melt the butter in a large pot and add the marshmallows. Stir until they are all melted!
- Add in the food coloring and stir until it turns green.
- Add rice krispie cereal a little bit at a time and stir to combine.
- Press rice krispie cereal into a buttered 9 x 13 pan. Press flat and let cool.
- Let rice krispie treats sit for about 30 minutes.
- Remove from pan and cut into squares.
- Melt Chocolate according the package directions. Dip the tops of the Rice Krispie Treats into the melted chocolate.
- Lay on a sheet of wax paper (or a plate).
- Use some of the melted chocolate and "glue" on the candy eyes.
- Fill a ziplock bag with some of the melted chocolate, snip an end off and pipe a stitch mouth onto Frankenstein.
- Let the Frankenstein Rice Krispie Treats sit for about 20 minutes undisturbed or until the chocolate had hardened.
Brew-Ha-Ha Punch from My Recipes
- 2 cups sugar
- 2 quarts water
- 2 (0.13-ounce) envelopes lime drink mix
- 1 (46-ounce) can pineapple juice
- 1 quart ginger ale
- Stir together sugar and 2 quarts water until sugar is dissolved
- Stir in remaining ingredients. Chill.
- For a scary presentation, place punch bowl into a larger bowl, and add dry ice to larger bowl.
Oct 06, 2015
As we are officially in fall and less than a month away from Halloween, we rounded up 20 great fall decorating ideas to get your house in the autumn spirit!
Line the steps
Pinecones and candles
Leaf Garland and Pumpkins
Sep 23, 2015
Hurricane season in the Atlantic is from June 1 - November 30, usually peaking in late August and September. On average, 10.1 named storms occur each season, with an average of 5.9 becoming hurricanes and 2.5 becoming major hurricanes.
So far this year, we have had 9 storms with 2 hurricanes and only 1 major hurricanes. None have reached Virginia's Eastern Shore yet, but natives no doubt know quickly this can change and how much damage we can sustain.
Anyone living near the water should always follow basic preparedness tips for themselves and their homes.
For yourself and your family:
- Have an evacuation plan; know where you're going to go and how you'll get out of town
- Have a safety kit prepared, including a flashlight, batteries, cash, first aid supplies, and copies of your critical information
- Have a supply of water and food in case you are at home without power for a period of time
For your home:
- Trim damaged trees and limbs before hurricane season
- Secure loose gutters and clear them of debris
- Consider purchasing a generator in the event you lose power
For a detailed plan of how to prepare in the hours leading up to a hurricane, go here.
The Hurricane of 1933
One of the most memorable hurricanes in our area is The Hurricane of 1933, which shaped Ocean City, MD, into the resort town we know it as today.
Before this hurricane, there wasn't an inlet but several more blocks of business and houses below 2nd Street. After four days of heavy rain and two days of the actual hurricane, winds and flooding tore up the boardwalk and washed away cars, homes and businesses. The bays behind Ocean City became so overwhelmed with rainwater and storm surge, they began to resemble a water balloon and eventually burst, creating the inlet we know.
After the inlet was open for good, commercial fishing thrived, helping Ocean City become the White Marlin Capital of the World, and ocean waters sweeping in and out of the inlet helped keep the bays cleaner and actually gave us better tasting oysters.
Who would've guessed that such a disaster could have actually helped Ocean City become the tourist destination it is today. Click here to read more about the hurricane of 1933 and watch the video below to see footage.
Sep 04, 2015
In some parts of the country, fall festivals mean pumpkin patches and corn mazes. Here on Virginia's Eastern Shore, it's all about the local oysters.
Here is a round-up of the local festivals seafood-lovers should plan to hit this fall.
Chincoteague Volunteer Fire Department Chili and Chowder Cook-off
When: September 26
Where: Chincoteague Carnival Grounds
What: Amateur and professional contestants go head-to-head cooking spicy chilis and rich chowders, and the public can purchase as many bowls as they want. When you're full, enjoy the car show and live music. More info here.
Chincoteague Island Oyster Festival
When: October 10
Where: Tom's Cove Park
What: All you can eat oysters on the half shell, steamed oysters, single fried oysters, oyster fritters, clam chowder, clam fritters, salad bar, french fries, hush puppies, hot dogs, water and soft drinks. Come hungry! More info here.
Soule Arnold Oyster Roast and Clam Steam
When: October 23
Where: Exmore Town Park
What: An all you can eat buffet of salty, roasted seaside oysters; fresh steamed clams provided by Eastern Shore Events; creamy clam chowder made locally by Terry Brothers Seafood; smoky pork barbecue; coleslaw and desserts. There will also be a cash bar and silent auction. More info here.
Terroir & Merroir: Oyster Extravaganza
When: November 14
Where: Chatham Vineyards
What: Enjoy Chatham Vineyard's wines paired with oysters that are cultivated in the waters surrounding the winery. You'll also enjoy the scenery of the winery, which sits on Church Creek and is dotted with buildings that date to the early 1800's. More info here.
Cape Charles Historical Society Oyster Roast
When: November 28
Where: Cape Charles Museum
What: It's all about the oysters, which will be served both roasted and raw. Also available will be spicy bacon and potato studded clam chowder, fried chicken, three bean salad, potato salad and homemade rolls. More info here.
Aug 25, 2015
Birding on Assateague Island
Bird watching on Assateague Island is must-have experience for residents in the area. Just a short drive or boat ride from Captain's Cove, the island is home to more than 300 species of migratory and resident birds.
Assateague is located along the Atlantic flyway for shorebirds, waterfowl and more that nest in the north and migrate south for the winter. The salt marshes, pine woods, and specially-developed freshwater impoundments on the refuge are also nesting places for a variety of birds including species of plovers, gulls, terns, geese, herons, and ducks.
Many parts of the island are best accessible by boat along the inland waters of Assateague. A birdwatching voyage by boat offers visitors the chance to see more of the refuge and its wildlife which can be found along over 37 miles of Assateague's pristine waterways. Go on a guided bird watching tour, where you can see different migrating birds and Bald Eagles every day from April to October.
Assateague Island is home to the Piping Plover, a threatened species of small, melodious shorebird. The Piping Plover breeding season begins in mid-April and lasts until the birds migrate south, usually between early August and early September. To ensure their safety, the National Park Service closes portions of the island during the breeding season.
Last year, an estimated 38 pairs of piping plovers nested along the Maryland portion of Assateague Island National Seashore and fledged 59 chicks, the highest productivity numbers since 2004, according to the National Park Service.
Chincoteague National Wildlife Refuge
Bird enthusiasts usually find the best opportunities along the Virginia portion of the island, at the Chincoteague National Wildlife Refuge. The refuge is home to about 90 species that nest either on or near the refuge. In addition to the birds that live in the area, over 250 bird species can be spotted on the refuge as they rest and refuel during migration.
The refuge is made up of four distinct habitats for birds: beach, saltwater marsh, freshwater marsh, and maritime forests of pine and oak. Throughout the spring, summer, and fall visitors will find many herons and egrets stalking the shallow ponds for a meal. Thousands of brant, geese, and ducks spend their winter on the refuge.
Virginia Birding and Wildlife Trail
The first statewide program of it's kind in the United States, the trail is divided into three areas: Coastal, Mountain and Piedmont. The Coastal Area features 18 loops incorporating Pocahontas State Park, The Eastern Shore of Virginia National Wildlife Refuge and the Virginia Living Museum. Plan your trip here.
Eastern Shore Birding & Wildlife Festival
You can register now for the Eastern Shore Birding & Wildlife Festival,where you can experience the peak of fall bird migration and see hawks, warblers and other songbirds. The festival will be October 8-11 in Cape Charles, Virginia. Last year, birders saw an incredible 162 bird species during the three day festival weekend! Get more info here.
Aug 07, 2015
Chincoteague Bay Fishing
Chincoteague is a flounder hot spot, with the best months usually being from April to October. Most flounder will be catch and release, as Virginia regulations state that the minimum size limit to keep flounder is 16 inches long, with a possession limit of 4 per person.
Speckled trout are most commonly caught from spring to fall, usually weighing in around 3-4 pounds, but sometimes up to 10. There is a minimum size limit of 14 inches long and a possession limit of 5 per person.
Croaker is especially plentiful during the summer months in the surf and in the bay. Croakers are small, but tasty. In Virginia, there is no minimum size or possession limit.
The largest striped bass can be found in the surf at Assateague or Ocean City, but many are caught in the Chincoteague Bay. To keep a striped bass, there is a one fish limit, with a minimum size of 28 inches long.
Peak season for white marlin is July to September. The White Marlin Capital of the World, less than 50 miles away in Ocean City, MD, hosts its White Marlin Open in the beginning of August each year.
Bluefin tuna's peak season is from June to August, but big fish can occasionally found around the Chesapeake Light Tower in late November and December. They average 30-70 pounds, but the state record is a whopping 573 pounds caught in 2007.
Yellowfin can be caught from May to October, with peak season in June through September. Like bluefin tuna, the yellowfin also averages about 30-70 pounds.
Wahoo are available from June to October, usually peaking from late summer to early fall. Wahoo can be hard to find, but once you find one you're bound to find more. They average from 20-40 pounds.
Crabbing and Clamming
Blue crabs only require a few tools: a crab line, a net, and a bucket for your catch. For bait, chicken necks are a popular choice. Steam the crabs in a large crab pot with plenty of Old Bay Seasoning. Remember to check state size limits, which differ for immature/mature and male/female crabs.
Tom's Cove is the go-to spot for clamming. All you need is a bucket and a clam rake. Look for a key-hole indentation in the sand, or just pick a spot to start digging.
'Tis the season for barbecues, pool parties and bonfires. We've compiled some tips to make your summer entertaining easy and fun!
Make it Comfortable
Keep guests comfortable with seating covered with cushions and pillows. You can even spread some blankets out on the lawn so people can enjoy their meal picnic-style. Make sure that there is more than enough seating for everyone.
Keep the Menu Simple
Summer means burgers, salads and fruit. Your guests won't be expecting a gourmet meal at a summer cookout, so keep it low-key and low-stress.
If you're serving your guests corn on the cob, try cooler corn. Just pour two kettles of boiling water into a cooler of corn and let it sit for 30 minutes. Get more info here.
Stick to the two-hour serving rule. Discard food that has been on the buffet table for two hours or more. On days warmer than 90 degrees, discard food after one hour.
Table Set Up
Cover the table with brown craft paper that you can just throw away at the end of the night. If you use a lighter table cloth, make sure your dishes are heavy enough to stop it from blowing off in the wind, or set a few tablecloth weights around.
Set up Different Stations around the Yard
You don't want everyone crowded in front of the one food and drink table. Set up several stations in different locations around the yard, like a drink station, a burger bar with condiments and toppings, and a side dish station.
You should also set up multiple lawn games around the yard so that people will be entertained all night long. Try corn hole, ladder ball or bocce ball. Or you could even spray paint the yard for an outdoor game of Twister! See how here.
Keep the Bugs Away
Put Citronella candles on the tables and torches around the yard. These will not only keep the bugs away, but provide nice mood lighting!
To keep the bugs from flying into drinks, cover glasses with a cupcake liner and stick a straw through. See more here.
Provide some relief from the sun by putting tables and chairs in the shade or setting up umbrellas. Help guests cool off with some outdoor fans.
Summer is time to experiment with fun, fruity cocktails, like some of these summer cocktails from Delish. Make sure you also have enough non-alcoholic drinks around to keep everyone hydrated. In the summer heat, you can never have enough ice and water!
Prepare for the Night
You may start your party later in the day to avoid the heat, or it might just be so fun that it lasts all night! Be prepared with blankets, string lights and even a fire pit.
Follow along with these tips and have a great time hosting your next summer event!
Jul 10, 2015
Heading out for a camping trip soon? Whether you're new to camping or an outdoor aficionado, here are some tips to make your next camping trip a little easier.
If you don't have all of the camping equipment you need, no need to run out and buy everything right away. Ask if you can borrow from a friend. Another option is to rent your equipment. Some online rental services include Lower Gear and Gear To Go Outfitters, or check out outdoor store rental services like REI.
Fire and Light
We know starting a fire can be hard, but did you know that Doritos can be used as kindling? You can also bring a few DIY fire starters, like cotton balls coated in vaseline or wax. To keep matches protected, pack them in a small plastic container and then glue a piece of sandpaper to the top to make lighting them easy. Lastly, you can wrap a head lamp around an empty jug with the light facing in to create your own lantern, as seen here.
To protect yourself from mosquitos and ticks, wear long pants and sleeves as much as the weather allows. Sage is a natural mosquito deterrent, so throw some on the fire every now and then to keep them away. Tea tree oil is a natural tick deterrent. Mix one part tea tree oil with two parts water in a spray bottle and spray it around your feet and legs. Keeping a dryer sheet in your pocket may also help to repel bugs.
No need to buy travel size spices. Pack your spices from home in tic-tac boxes and they're ready to go. See how here. Prepare your meals ahead of time, then freeze them and reheat them over the fire. For breakfast, put pancake batter in a bag, freeze it and thaw it out when you're ready to cook. Pre-crack eggs and bring them in a jar so you don't have to worry about them getting cracked in the cooler. Freeze gallon jugs or bottles of water before you go so that you don't need to buy as much ice for your cooler. Check out these nifty tips to pack your cooler.
Protect your toilet paper by putting it in an old coffee can and cutting a slit to slide the paper through. See how here. Place dots of toothpaste out on a baking sheet a few days ahead of time and let them dry, and pack those instead of a whole bottle of toothpaste. When it's time to brush, pop a toothpaste dot and some water in your mouth and you'll be good to go. Finally, fill an empty laundry detergent dispenser with water to easily set up a handwashing station.
Start planning for packing several weeks ahead of time so you have time to make sure you have all of the essentials. The most important packing tip is to use a checklist, like this printable camping checklist from REI. Another checklist tip: Check an item when you've gathered it, and then turn that into an X once it's actually packed in the car. This may seem obvious, but load your car in reverse order. The things you'll need first, like tents and tarps, should be the last things you pack in the car.
Hopefully you have a chance to enjoy the great weather on a camping trip this summer. Use these tips to make your next trip smooth and easy!
Jun 26, 2015
Pony Penning is a longtime Chincoteague tradition with roots dating back to the 1700s. Modern day Pony Penning has taken place since 1925, when the Chincoteague Volunteer Fire Company held the first Fireman's Carnival during the Pony Penning to help them raise funds for fire fighting equipment. More than a dozen colts were sold to benefit the fire company, the carnival was a huge success, and Pony Penning as we know it today was born.
Pony Penning is an annual event on the last Wednesday and Thursday each July, in which ponies swim from Assateague Island across the channel to Chincoteague to be sold in an auction to benefit the fire department. Wednesday July 29 will mark Chincoteague's 90th Annual Pony Swim, followed by the auction on Thursday. Every year, more than 40,000 visitors gather on the shoreline to watch the world-famous Pony Swim.
Here is a quick guide to the Pony Swim and its surrounding events:
The Chincoteague Fireman's Carnival will be open each night during Pony Penning week beginning at 7 p.m.
Pony Roundup - July 25 and 26
The weekend prior to the pony swim, Saltwater Cowboys will round up the approximately 150 wild ponies that live on Assateague Island. 50 ponies who reside on the southern end of the island will be herded into a southern corral Saturday afternoon, and 100 ponies on the northern end will be herded into a northern corral Sunday morning.
Beach Walk - July 27
Monday morning, the Saltwater Cowboys will move the ponies from the northern corral down the beach to join the ponies in the southern corral.To see the ponies make their walk, be at Assateague Beach by 6 a.m.
Pony Swim - July 29
The Saltwater Cowboys swim the ponies from Assateague Island to Chincoteague Island during slack tide - a period of about 30 minutes between tides when there is no current. Slack tide, which generally occurs sometime between 7am and 1pm, is the easiest time for the ponies to make their swim. Click here for more information about where and how to view the Pony Swim.
After the 5-10 minute swim, the ponies rest for about 45 minutes before they are paraded down Main Street to the carnival grounds for the auction Thursday morning.
Auction - July 30
The day after the swim, the foals are auctioned. The auction, set to begin at 8am, serves both to keep the size of the herd from getting too large and as a fundraiser for the Chincoteague Volunteer Fire Department. Last year, 54 ponies were sold for a record-high average cost of $2772.
Each year, a few foals are selected to be buybacks, which are auctioned with the stipulation that they are donated back to the fire company. The winners of the buyback ponies get to name them before they are returned to Assateague Island to replenish the herd and live out the rest of their lives.
The day after the auction, Saltwater Cowboys swim the remaining ponies back to Assateague Island where they will remain until next year's Pony Penning.
Jun 15, 2015
If you're looking to live near your work on the Virginia Eastern Shore, Captain's Cove is a top notch community. Conveniently located between Virginia Beach, VA. and Ocean City, MD. you'll find affordable resort living without giving up any of the perks!
Captain's Cove also offers a "Homes for Heroes" discount for military, law enforcement, fire & rescue, educators and medical personnel!
Whether you're looking for jobs in Greenbackville, VA. or already work nearby, share a slice of life on the Eastern Shore at Captain's Cove!
To Learn More About Captain's Cove Click Here
May 06, 2015
The open water is calling and to best enjoy it, we thought we'd share helpful maintenance tips to get you out to sea safely!
The following are general items to review before heading out on the water for the first time of the season as well as regular maintenance tips:
Do a general cleaning of hull, deck and topsides using a mild detergent then wax well
Make sure drains and scuppers are clear
Clean windows and hatches, canvas, bimini, dodger, and interior including bilges
Check and replace wiper blades if necessary
Make sure registration is current and onboard
We found a very detailed list from BoatSafe.com
Don't forget the basics during Safe Boating Week
Whether you have a sailboat, powerboat, fishing boat or other type of watercraft, enjoy getting your boat ready and have a wonderful summer on the water!
Spring is finally here!
Despite it's best effort, Winter has finally subsided and the great outdoors are calling. With the weather warming up landscaping quickly comes to mind for gardeners and those who enjoy landscaping.
While landscaping does require some dirty work, it doesn't have to be terribly difficult. And when done well, produces beautiful scenery!
Read on below for insights and great sites to visit with plentiful local gardening information.
What Makes Eastern Shore Native Plants So Special?
- ES native plants are survivors! They held an important place in the shore's local ecology prior to John Smith's landing and are well adapted to the Shore's soils and climate.
- ES natives generally require less watering and fertilizing than non-natives, and are less susceptible to drought.
- ES natives are often more resistant to insects and disease and less likely to need pesticides.
- ES natives can be resistant to occasional salt- water stress.
- ES natives help preserve the diversity, beauty, and function of our natural ecosystems.
These benefits save time, money and the Shore's Unique Environment! Make sure to visit the Virginia Department of Environmental Quality to print out their benefits fact sheet and more.
For a PDF of Virgina Eastern Shore Native Plants, Click Here.
If you're looking for a place to purchase plants nearby, you can visit the Environmental Concern wholesale wetland plant nursery. For more details on Eastern Shore flora, visit the Eastern Shore Gardener online.
We also found these two great organizations if you want to get more involved regionally:
Aside from the aesthetics of gardening, it can also be quite relaxing. We hope these resources reduce the potential anxiety of landscaping and help to paint a beautiful picture just outside your front door!
Mar 04, 2015
If you love to eat out, consider yourself a foodie or you're just looking for restaurants near Greenbackville, Virginia...
we hope you're hungry! The 12 destinations below offer everything from seafood (imagine that!) and BBQ to
Vietnamese and ice cream.
The Marina Club Restaurant
Call us biased, but we love our Marina Club! Come for the Prime Rib Night or Taco Night, stay for the view and great company.
The Crusty Crab Seafood Shack
Fresh seafood, kids meals and one heck of a mascot.
Ray's Shanty Restaurant
A staple for great shrimp and seafood for almost 30 years, it's be said if you don't eat at Ray's you're missing a shore thing.
Etta's Channel Side Restaurant
Great food and an amazing view of the Chincoteague lighthouse make Etta's a local favorite.
AJ's on the Creek
Family owned with a menu that has received many accolades over the years. You'll also find artists and live music to entertain you while you relax and dine.
Bill's Prime Seafood and Steaks
Serving breakfast lunch and dinner since 1960 and open at 6am. Stop in for a meal no matter what time of day hunger calls.
Don's Seafood Restaurant and Chatties Lounge
The oysters and clams at their raw bar are locally sourced from world renowned Tom's Cove Aquafarms. The sunsets and dancing are just added perks.
One of the newest restaurants in Chincoteague complete with 180 degree view of the bay and and beach too. Aside from the ambiance, the menu is fresh and satisfying.
Known for fresh ingredients (it's rumored that the owner drives hours weekly for key ingredients) and healthy traditional Vietnamese dishes this gem is a great change of pace.
Woody's Beach BBQ
A casual atmosphere featuring BBQ as well as the eclectic menu found at The Eatery for those food lovers not inclined to enjoy swine or bird.
After dinner calls for a treat (or maybe before dinner if you don't like rules) and Island Creamery has many frozen desserts and cakes to indulge your sweet tooth.
Enjoy your soft serve or shake on their patio or grab one to go at the drive-thru on your way home.
If you weren't hungry before, chances are your mouth is watering thinking of a meal at one of these great local businesses. Enjoy!
Feb 09, 2015
Tax time. Two words most people get a bit anxious about every year as thoughts of diving deep into receipts and paperwork take over. We took a look around and found some of the most useful articles covering the topic including general tax tips, homeowner advice, small business owner insight and even free tax help.
It's never a good sign when the IRS commissioner is worried about an upcoming tax-filing season. True, recent years have started off with tax uncertainty, which has led to delayed return processing and slowed refunds. And the latest concern is about some expired tax provisions that could produce a replay of the same in 2015.
But beyond those laws and the general hassle of the annual spring rite of filing, there are other tax issues to consider in the coming year. Here are 10 tax matters that could affect you in 2015.
You know all those tax breaks that were scheduled to expire at the end of 2014? More than 50 of them didn't expire after all but were extended at the last minute by Congress and the president with the Tax Increase Prevention Act, which was signed Dec. 19, 2014.
That's good news for people who have private mortgage insurance, suffered a foreclosure or short sale or live in a state with no income tax. Teachers and college students also benefited, as did homeowners who made energy-saving improvements.
With the housing market improving in some regions of the country, many people are becoming new homeowners. If you're among the new property owners, congratulations. You've just taken another step up the American-dream ladder and are a homeowner. Along with the joy of painting, plumbing and yard work, you now have some new tax considerations. The good news is you can deduct many home-related expenses.
Tax season is around the corner and whether you're filing as an LLC or S Corp, you want to get the most savings possible. To figure out the best ways to save in 2015, we asked accountants and finance experts for their best small business tax tips.
More than 12,000 free tax preparation sites will be open nationwide this year as the Internal Revenue Service continues to expand its partnerships with nonprofit and community organizations. The sites provide vital tax preparation services for low- to-moderate-income and elderly taxpayers.
We hope this information helps to educate a complex issue even if you're a seasoned tax pro!
Jan 15, 2015
Hobbies. You can enjoy learning new skills, create heartfelt gifts, enjoying personal time relaxing or participate in stimulating group interaction...the options seem endless. Below you'll find a handful of diverse crafting and DIY activities to enjoy.
How to Set Up a Crafting Corner in Your Home
Everybody has a hobby. At least, everybody ought to have a hobby. Some hobbies could be considered "passive engagement." These involve things like reading, crossword puzzles, movie watching and knitting. You can pretty much do those types of hobbies anywhere. Then there are the "active engagement" types of hobbies that require more participation on your part. We're talking arts and crafts. That could be quilting, decoupage or woodworking. For those kinds of hobbies, it helps to have a crafting corner in your home. How big and detailed that corner will be depends on your chosen hobby. Here are some steps on how to set up that crafting corner without breaking the bank. Read more...
Take Your Blanket Fort to the Next Level: Indoor Camping With Your Kids
It's the perfect time for winter nesting in a blanket fort. All you have to do is join the children's make-believe world. Set up camp indoors any time of the year, and as often as they want to. Foul weather or fear of creepy crawlies need not keep you away from camping fun. Discover the joys of family bonding, cocooned in cozy make-shift tents pitched right in the living room. Read more...
Homemade Romantic Gifts You Can Make in the Kitchen
It's almost Valentine's Day and you may be stumped on what to get your sweetheart this year. If the traditional chocolates and stuffed bears are growing old, you may want to consider something new and exciting that you can whip up right in your own kitchen. Read more...
Homemade Scented Oil Diffuser to Scent Your Home
Scent is perhaps the most important of all the five senses. It's a powerful memory trigger; it can conjure strong emotions and warn us if our milk has gone bad. Using scents to alter moods, relieve stress and to help psychological or physical well-being has been in use for centuries. This type of scent therapy is commonly referred to as aromatherapy. Read more...
8 New Ways to Use Clothes Hangers to Tidy Up Your Home
Just when you think you have no use for the extra wooden and wire hangers taking up space in your closet, we've rounded up a few awesome ways to repurpose them. Let these clothes hanger life hacks inspire you to make those ready-to-toss closet accessories work for you. Read more...
When crafting and DIY activities become a hobby, you truly have an endless amount of fun new projects to create!
Dec 08, 2014
The holidays are a great time of year to explore small towns and take in all the charm that goes with them! Enjoy the rich history, support local business while shopping and taking in a meal or two and marvel at the slower pace you're able to enjoy life. We've highlighted 5 local eastern shore towns for you to explore below.
The Friendliest Town on the Eastern Shore! Take in a movie or a show at The Historic MarVa Theater, capture the very essence of Pocomoke's history with a tour of The Delmarva Discovery Center and learn about what makes Pocomoke City and the surrounding areas so very special. Visit one of their two museums rich in local flavor, The Sturgis One Room Schoolhouse and The Coston House.
The waterside community of Crisfield in Somerset County, MD is the southernmost town in Maryland. Located on the Eastern Shore of the Chesapeake Bay, Crisfield is famous for its seafood - especially the Maryland blue crab - its Watermen, wildlife, natural beauty, simple lifestyle and strong sense of community built on faith and hard work.
Located on the shores of the Chesapeake Bay, Cape Charles continues its amazing transformation, recapturing its 1880s glory days when the railroad gave birth to this post-Victorian beauty. B&Bs, a boutique hotel, and cottage/resort rentals make staying here a pleasure. Unique shops in the downtown area, a full service European day spa, and nearby guided horseback trail rides on a waterfront estate add to the offerings. Dining includes waterfront restaurants, a Viennese-inspired coffee house, Irish pub, old-fashioned soda fountain, and more. The Cape Charles Museum provides a fascinating look back in time to see how Cape Charles was formed.
Even though this video is geared towards seasons other than winter (you can always plan ahead),
we loved it and wanted to share it.
*If you'd rather visit by sea, we've also shared local boating destinations to visit that might interest you!
Onancock is a small waterfront town on the Eastern Shore of Virginia offering shopping (lots of antiques), dining, bed and breakfasts and more!
Tangier Island, dubbed the "soft crab capital" of the nation, is a unique island located in the middle of the Chesapeake Bay. If you would like to see an unspoiled fishing village with quaint, narrow streets, then take a step back in time and visit Tangier Island today! The people of Tangier, who speak with a lingering trace of Elizabethan accent, are warm, friendly and proud of their island. They live here because they like the lifestyle and have no desire to live on the mainland. Spend some time on Tangier. Visit by air or sea. Stay for the night in one of the delightful bed and breakfasts, or take a day-trip on one of the ferries. An experience on Tangier Island will stay with you for years to come. It might be small in population, but the people of Tangier have a great love of the Chesapeake Bay and each other.
These are just some of the many small towns near Captain's Cove. Whenever you make the trip, enjoy the visit!
Nov 17, 2014
Cooking and Thanksgiving go hand in hand. With the potential for many different palettes to please, having a diverse menu can make it easier to please all of your guests! We've put together a list 6 dishes from the start of your meal all the way through dessert.
Butternut Squash Soup
Cut squash into 1-inch chunks. In large pot melt butter. Add onion and cook until translucent, about 8 minutes. Add squash and stock. Bring to a simmer and cook until squash is tender, about 15 to 20 minutes. Remove squash chunks with slotted spoon and place in a blender and puree. Return blended squash to pot. Stir and season with nutmeg, salt, and pepper. Serve.
Roasted Butternut Tossed Salad
This salad makes an easy and special side dish for Thanksgiving dinner, and it's packed with nutritious veggies, almonds, berries and squash. -Katie
Recipe Courtesy of Taste of Home. Other great Thanksgiving recipes.
Classic Sweet Potato Casserole
Cranberry Glazed Turkey Breast
Although you do have to brine it the night before, it's still super simple to make and only takes about 30 minutes of actual work time to prepare the brine, rub the turkey and make the glaze!
Recipe Courtesy of Little Leopard Book. Other popular Thanksgiving recipes.
Italian Sausage and Bread Stuffing
Gingersnap Cherry Cheesecake
While we selected just 6 dishes to serve, we also made sure to include the sites where we found these great recipes. Take a few minutes to visit them and find the perfect meal if you aren't happy with our selections.
Please enjoy your meal and the time spent this Thanksgiving with family and friends!
Oct 30, 2014
Do you know why the game is called golf? Because all the other four letter words were taken!
While golf can be frustrating, having a plan and committing to practice drills to improve your game reduces the unpleasantries of each round. We've researched several golfing websites to share tips that should help you take at least 5 or more shots off your game.
We've seen this first tip repeatedly on several sites. Learn to play strategically! Strategic golfers think their way around the course. Have a plan when you step up to the tee. Understand your limitations and judge the process, not the outcome.
Playing the right golf ball is as essential as any other piece of equipment in your bag. This chart from Golf Galaxy takes several important factors into consideration when it comes to choosing the best ball for your game.
If you're feeling totally lost on the tee, you need a swing key that combats a lot of potential problems. Try keeping your arms swinging at a constant speed through the ball and all the way to the finish. Many golfers swing to the ball and stop; they "throw" the club at the ball. This can lead to misses of all kinds, so picking the proper correction can be confusing. If you keep up your arm speed, you'll create good rhythm and flow through impact. Read More
With a fairway lie and plenty of green to work with, the pitch-and-run is the best shot to play. There's no reason to fly the ball all the way to the hole--even if you do see the pros doing it on TV. Read More
Many golfers grab a sleeve of balls, go to the putting green and hit putts of random length and break until they feel they have finished their lap. You need to have a strategy for getting better, and that means going to a teacher who can give you the tools you need because he or she is trained to teach putting and to fit you for a putter. According to industry data, fewer than 10 percent of golf lessons are on putting, so choose wisely. Read More
Remember, "Golf is deceptively simple and endlessly complicated." - Arnold Palmer
BONUS - GolfShot is a great app that uses GPS to find courses nearby and tracks your club selection, direction, strokes and more.
If you like to camp, chances are camping in the fall is one of your favorites. While camping in the summer can be tons of fun, it's often to hot to sleep well. Camping in the spring is cooler, but the crisp fall air, campfires at night and the many colors of the leaves turning are some of the great allures of camping!
We've put together a list of local destinations that offer all types of camping experiences to enjoy:
Camping MD National Park - Camping at Assateague will be a pleasant experience if you plan ahead! The barrier island habitat can be harsh if you are not prepared. Camping is available only in the Maryland district of Assateague Island. Campers are reminded to bring firewood(locally purchased), sunscreen, insect repellent, screen tents for shade and insect protection, and long tent stakes to anchor tents in the sand and wind.
Backcountry Camping MD - Assateague Island National Seashore has two oceanside and four bayside camping areas for visitors who wish to backpack or paddle the island. All backcountry campsites are located in Maryland; no camping is permitted in the Virginia district. The distance traveled to backcountry sites from the Ranger Station in Maryland range from 2 1/2 to 13 miles.
Camping VA - Maddox Family Campground offers the best in recreational camping, while being the closet campground to the Wildlife Refuge and Beach on Assateague Island. Maddox Family Campground includes over 550 sites, spread across 200 acres of wooded area.
Camping VA State Park - Camping, 6-bedroom family lodges, rental RVs, yurt and camping lodge (bunkhouse). For information on availability of overnight accommodations, particular park amenities or to make a reservation, you can reserve online or call 1-800-933-PARK. Rental rates for cabins and camping vary by season, dwelling and park. First, determine the appropriate season, which can vary by park, then the relevant rate.
Family Camping Resort VA - Popups, travel trailers, fifth wheels or motor homes, we have several 30-amp full hookup sites. For those who want to rough it a bit more, we offer many water/electric only campsites. If you want to experience the "true" camping experience, we also have no-hookup tent sites.
Family Camping Destination Park VA - Come enjoy the family-oriented destination park where there are no strangers, just camping friends you haven't met yet! Located on Virginia's Eastern Shore in Sanford, just minutes away from Chincoteague and Assateague Island. We are nestled amongst the tall pines and the beautiful waterfront of the Pocomoke Sound. Big Rig Friendly. Themed weekends throughout our season!
RV Camping VA - Located one half mile north of the Chesapeake Bay Bridge-Tunnel, Sunset Beach Inn is surrounded by 1700 acres of ecologically protected lands. Plus, our 38 acre site boasts one of the Eastern Shore's largest private beaches. Ecotourism, boating, swimming, biking, fishing and relaxing are yours to enjoy at our unique facility.
Now that we've given you some ideas as to where you might want to go, make sure to brush up your list of items to bring with these "10 Camping Essentials".
We hope you're able to get out and explore new territory this fall. Enjoy!
The Crab Feast is a staple to many Eastern Shore towns around the Chesapeake Bay...especially in Maryland. While crab feasts are prevalent in the late spring and summer months, they're a great way to enjoy the fall too! Below are the supplies you'll need to enjoy your feast as well as picking directions.
Chesapeake Bay Blue Crabs (steamed unless you want to steam them yourself)
Wooden Mallet (having a knife is also useful for the claws)
Old Bay / J.O. Spice
Drawn Butter (melted with lemon juice added if desired)
Shell Bowl / Trash Can
- Pick a nice flat surface with plenty of room for everyone and cover it with the newspapers. Crabs get messy so having space for everyone makes eating them more enjoyable and the newspapers make for easy cleanup!
- Pick up your first crab and remove the front legs with the claws by pulling them off where they meet the crabs body.
- Crack the leg at the joint.
- Position the leg vertically on the table and use the mallet to break it open. Just a wack or two to get the leg cracked and use your hands and/or knife to break it open and get the meat. For the claw, hold each end of the pincer and pull them apart. It you do it right, you should be able to pull out a nice bit of meat on the part that breaks away.
- Break off the back legs of the crab.
- Flip the crab over so it's upside down and locate the apron. On a female crab this will be rounded and on the male crab it will be pointed. Use your fingers of a knife to get under the apron. Pull it back and break it off cleanly.
- Turn the crab back right-side up and place your thumbs at the back end of the crab where you just broke the apron off. Pull the top of the shell from the bottom of the crab and separate the two parts.
- Discard the top of the shell or leave it near by to scrape off extra seasoning.
- In the body of the crab you will see feathery white/grey pieces which are the crab's lungs. Some people call these "Dead Man's Fingers". These aren't edible so remove them and toss them. You will also see a yellow substance which is called "mustard". This is the crab's liver and is edible, but an acquired taste.
- Place your thumbs in the center of the crab and break it in half. This allows you to get meat from each side.
- Use your fingers (or knife if necessary) to remove all the meat from each side. Once finished, enjoy your next crab!
- Once finished, you can use the leftovers to make crab soup or just roll everything up in the newspaper and throw it away.
We hope you found this information helpful and enjoyed reading how to properly pick a crab!
*Images courtesy of ChesapeakeBay.net
Sep 18, 2014
Life on the water has many great offerings, but the quaint little towns, unique history and ability to get around by boat are on the top of our list. Living near the Chesapeake Bay is no different and the abundance of history nearby makes for exciting weekend trips. In this post we share local destinations that offer an abundance of charm and a variety of activities that are sure to please those that live on the Virginia Eastern Shore.
Cape Charles: Ferry service to Norfolk and Hampton was a regular occurrence from Cape Charles up until the early 50's when the Chesapeake Bay Bridge Tunnel was built. Today you'll find public beaches, historic downtown shops and restaurants as well as a newly renovated marina. While you're in town you can also golf, kayak or enjoy bird watching.
Onancock: One of the largest old port towns on Virginia's Eastern Shore, Onancock was once frequented by steamboats in between trips to larger port towns of Baltimore or Norfolk. This is a great town for walking and exploring with it's downtown shops, restaurants and galleries. You'll also find many old Victorian homes for those that enjoy architecture and historical charm.
Tangier Island: Sitting in the middle of the Chesapeake Bay, Tangier Island is only accessible by boat or plane. The island is about 1 mile wide and 3 miles long with many of the residents making a living from crabbing. Aside from the many restaurants to choose from, bed and breakfasts are also popular on the island.
Hampton: The City of Hampton is a larger town and offers a wide variety of activities to enjoy. The downtown waterfront area is home to the Virginia Air and Space Museum (complete with 3D IMAX theater) as well as an antique restored carousel as you walk the waterfront. Nearby Fort Monroe and the neighborhood of Phoebus are more low key with historic fort and lighthouse tours, antique shops, restaurants and galleries. While you're in town try to catch a show at the American Theatre.
Virginia Beach: Although Virginia Beach is known for it's oceanfront beaches and heavy tourist activity, there is also a relaxed side to enjoy. The bayside has calmer waters and also has the Lynnhaven boat ramp to welcome your arrival. If you want to experience a totally different side of Virginia Beach, plan a day to visit First Landing State Park where the Susan Constant arrived weeks before landing at Jamestown!
Aug 28, 2014
Calling all golf fanatics! The weather this summer has been mild and great for hitting the links often without having to endure the sweltering heat. There are many new products in the marketplace to consider, but we thought we'd share the best staples of the game: drivers, putters and balls.
Our research took us to several sites as we wanted to gain insight from different perspectives. Take a look at what we found:
Drivers: Of the 5 drivers tested our favorite is the Ping G25. Having actually used this driver it hit smooth, straight and far...with a novice using it for the first time. That's a true test!
Putters (Blade): 10 blade putters were tested by 12 golfers of varying ages and skill levels. While being biased to Odyssey (White Hot Pro) it turns out this test scored the Odyssey Tank Cruiser #1 the highest.
Putters (Mallet): A whopping 24 mallet putters tested by 10 golfers found the Ping Ketsch winner by a landslide over it's competitors for accuracy. This putter scored 132 vs. the next closest score of 97!
Balls: A wide variety of new 2014 golf balls came out from icons like Jack Nicklaus and his Golden Bear balls (made by Bridgestone) to industry giant Callaway Golf and their new Speed Regime balls. Nike also came out with their RZN line of color coded balls featuring 4 different performance aspects to consider. The biggest bang for the buck comes from Hopkins Golf (started by Cleveland Golf's old CEO) new VL Pro balls. At around $10 cheaper per dozen along with free shipping...you should have some of these in you bag!
Bonus: Find great deals on used golf balls for practice and more.
We hope you enjoyed this review and look forward to seeing you out on the greens at Captains Cove Golf Course!
Aug 15, 2014
Welcome to Captain's Cove Resort Community here on the web via our new website!
Captain's Cove features numerous amenities that offer something for everyone and affordable lot/home packages from the mid $120's. The Marina Club Restaurant and lounge provides fine dining - open to the public year round. At the Town Center, Captain's Cove Golf Course challenges golfers with one of the finest experiences on the Shore. Indoor / outdoor pools and other outdoor activities are also available for your enjoyment.
Captain's Cove Resort Community is located just 45 minutes from Ocean City, MD and Salisbury, MD as well as being only 20 minutes from Pocomoke City, MD - "The Friendliest Town on the Eastern Shore". Captain's Cove is an affordable oceanside gem with a low tax rate and a multitude of nearby destinations offering up truly unique experiences.
Come share a slice of life on the Eastern Shore with us!
Captain's Cove Resort Community is located in Accomack County, VA. A recreational community located on the west shore of Chincoteague Bay, bordering MD to the north. Click here for Directions.