A Day on the James River with Lynchburg's Finest

If you live in the Lynchburg area for any amount of time, you know floating the James River isn’t just a hobby, it’s a must-have experience!  People from all over Virginia brave the chilly waters from early June until late August each summer. Whether kayaking, tubing, paddle-boarding or canoeing, this 348 mile waterway is bound to take your breath away while leaving you with memories that will not fade with your summer tan!

James River.jpg

 

What you’ll need:

  • Kayak, paddle-board, inner tube, or canoe. Something you can float in/on for a few hours.

  • Note: If it’s rained recently this means higher water and a faster current. No/little rain means lower water (more likely to bump rocks along the way).

  • Be sure to bring a pump if you have a large tube to inflate!

  • 2 or more cars. You and your group will want to leave a car at both the entrance and exit locations as they are often several miles apart.

  • A plastic/waterproof bag for the supplies listed below.

  • Water! It takes a few hours to float even 3 miles, stay hydrated.

  • Sunscreen. You’ll be in direct sunlight for the duration of your journey.

  • Water shoes… I know everyone thinks these are lame, but when you get out of the river and hike/walk back to your car, your feet will encounter rocks, sticks and critters. Be prepared (Old sneakers, athletic sandals will also suffice).

  • Snacks!

  • Brightly colored bandana (red, yellow, orange).

  • Cell phone (I recommend placing it in two sealed plastic bags inside a waterproof container).

  • Carabiners! These are great to attach shoes, a cooler, etc. to your floatation device.

  • Sunglasses you won’t miss if you topple over in rough waters.

  • For children/mediocre swimmers: Life-vest. There are a few rapids along the way.

 

MAKE A PLAN:

  1. You must plan ahead and choose your entrance and exit site. Click here for a list of entrance and exit locations.

  2. Make sure your entrance and exit spots don’t have a dam in between them.

  3. For your first time, when you arrive at the exit site, walk down to the bank of the river and ensure this is a location you are comfortable hiking/walking after you float. Tie that brightly colored bandana listed above to a sturdy tree, clearly visible on the river bank, this is how you’ll know when it’s time for you to get out of the river. Take note of the surroundings (after a few hours of floating, everything starts to look the same).

  4. Don’t go alone, it’s more fun with a group and it’s safer too!

  5. Be sure to take keys for BOTH cars with you in a sealed carrier on the water.

  6. Know that parts of the river are more turbulent, this is not ideal for children or less experienced swimmers.

  7. Have fun!

 Floating the James is a summer highlight for Virginia locals and visitors. You’ll be sure to see beautiful plant and wildlife as well as gorgeous mountainsides. Whatever your summer plans, be sure to include a day on the James!

For more information of fun things to do in the area, keep an eye on Lynchburg’s Finest blog!

Written by Anna Cribb

 

 

 

Lynchburg's Finest Farmer's Markets!

Summer is fully underway, which means it’s time for fresh blueberries, juicy plums and crisp cucumbers. Of course, the best place to find these tasty summer treats is your local farmer’s market! Farmers and vendors from all over central and western Virginia gather weekly to sell fresh produce, homemade jellies, pickled treats and so much more! If you’re looking to purchase healthy food grown by local farmers, the Lynchburg area has a few convenient options for you!

Lynchburg Community Market: Located on Main Street downtown, this farmer’s market is open Tuesday-Saturday from 7am until 2pm. On Saturday, a myriad of farmers from the surrounding area, along with craft vendors, make their way to Lynchburg to bring you their best produce and products. Located towards the back of the Community Market are additional vendors selling fresh baked goods, nuts, crafts, cheeses coffee and Irvington Spring Farm, providing the largest variety of flowers in Central Virginia! There’s nothing quite like being able to shake hands with the men and women who provide those delicious fresh fruits and vegetables and to experience Lynchburg’s downtown culture.

Doc's Market Square Farmer's Market: This fresh market experience is located on Liberty University’s campus and takes place every Thursday afternoon until late fall. Here you’ll find fresh eggs, hearty greens, fish, coffees, teas, handmade jewelry, woodwork and a myriad of other specialty crafts. Many local vendors arrive early with their food trucks and trailers to provide ice cream, hot doughnuts, delicious burgers and tasty empanadas. Whether you’re looking for that perfect gift, fresh food you can trust, or just want to browse, this is a great place to spend your Thursday afternoon!

 

 

Bedford Farmer’s Market: Main Street: Just a few miles down the road, a multi-partner group comes together every Tuesday from 3-6 PM, Friday from 7:30 AM – 1:30 PM and first Saturday of each month from 9 AM until 1 PM. You can count on these dates from May – October 1, 2016 for locals to bring fresh produce, often time picked as recently as that morning. Additionally, you’ll find an assortment of handmade arts and crafts, local meat, baked goods and homemade jams and jellies.

Forest Farmers Market: Last, but certainly not least, this farmer’s market offers programing as well as fresh fruit and vegetables. Located at 15583 Forest Road, this market will be functioning until October 29th! With more than 30 vendors, you are sure to find just what you are looking for, from homemade barbecue sauces, fresh fish, grass fed beef, coffee, kettle corn, not to mention the artisans and crafts, there is sure to be something for you! Open Saturdays from 8 AM until noon, be sure to check out the link for a list of events and programs, including food demonstrations and children’s activities.

eggs.jpg

You don’t have to worry about finding fresh food and handcrafted treasures, they are closer than you think! Be sure to check out Lynchburg’s most popular fresh markets this week, there’s a little something for everyone.

For more information on what’s going on in Lynchburg, keep your eye on the Lynchburg’s Finest blog!

Comparison is the thief of joy: Ladies, let's celebrate one another

Theodore Roosevelt said “Comparison is the thief of joy”.

Life is busy. Many of my family and friends haven't had a moment to think about ordering a copy of my latest published compilation. I thought why not share my favorite excerpts right here to encourage, inspire and empower women who work.

Go ahead. You know you want to. Go grab that cup of coffee or a glass of wine and let's celebrate one another as women!

Betsy Ferguson: Wife, Mother, Designer, Author & Owner of Lynchburg's Finest Real Estate Brokerage

Betsy Ferguson: Wife, Mother, Designer, Author & Owner of Lynchburg's Finest Real Estate Brokerage

So I've heard that people see Real Estate as an easy business route to make lots of money. Oh boy is it anything but easy! Rewarding...yes! Challenging...yes! Fulfilling...yes! Real Estate agent's put forth hours of work with many nights and weekends away from their family, not knowing if it will pay off and sometimes it doesn't. Nearly eight years in this business and it still hasn't driven me to quit yet. Much of what I want to share with you is why. These are things I wish someone had shared with me before ever getting started. 

If you are a woman who works ---no matter what you are considering pursuing I hope you can glean the importance of celebrating other women!


Before pursuing a career in real estate or any business field, I challenge you to define what success means to you. Don’t just come up with an answer in your head. Write it down. If you don’t, you’ll end up never feeling satisfied or proud of yourself, because someone will always have a bigger victory than you. So if you define success as closing 12 houses a year, and you succeed at closing 12 houses a year, then you win! And when you find out your friend in the business closed 50 houses, you don’t have to compare yourself to them-- you can celebrate them because you both succeeded. Imagine driving a race car but constantly looking at the lanes to your right and your left.  If you do that it is going to slow you down. Perhaps even distract you from your goal. Keep your eye on the goal because the only person you are competing against is yourself.


So many times we get on Facebook, Instagram, or engage in a simple conversation; anywhere that someone can show you the best things of their life. Be careful, comparison can catch you off guard. I can be having a great day and then after scrolling through my newsfeed or having a conversation with someone, all of a sudden I feel like I have lost the wind in my sails. I start thinking about where I want to be instead of being content with where I am. I recently had a fellow agent in the business approach me and begin comparing our businesses, models and practices. It really affected my spirit for days after the conversation. Listen when I tell you that your journey is your own, specially tailored for you and no one can take that from you. When you find yourself comparing and looking at what other people have, you will find yourself subconsciously devaluing what you have. What you really have is something pretty special. It’s special because it is specifically for you at this place and point in time of your life. I wish I could go back and tell my peer the importance of celebrating our diversity instead of comparing. Comparison requires someone be labeled the winner and someone the loser. Instead of her viewing me as her competitor why don’t we choose to support one another and stand together as allies? I know how hard my fellow peers work to stay and be in this business and for that I respect them. {Yes even the areas top local agent, Nadine Blakely. Especially Nadine Blakely, because I know what it has taken her to get to the top}


Another thing to be on the lookout for around the corner of comparison is jealousy. Jealousy is often comparisons partner in crime. Comparison tends to foster competition over community. It also leads to feelings of inadequacy. The bystanders that only see the finale are usually those who are jealous. Jealousy has a way of focusing on only one thing. Jealousy doesn’t give a complete picture. It ignores the hours of work that generated the sales and rankings-- the sacrifice of the time that could have been spent with family. Jealousy tends to overlook the years of practice, turmoil, confusion, and failure that preceded the success. Success always comes at a cost and jealousy tends to discount that cost.


When we compare ourselves to one another we lose inspiration. The question of inspiration is really a larger question of what moves us. What moves me. I recently read a great article in Real Simple magazine. The author Megan Abbott said, “As the years go by, as we grow older, we bury parts of ourselves, don’t we? The parts that make us vulnerable. That show us perhaps as we really are”. It’s those vulnerable parts that our clients need to see, that they want to see. They are in fact what make us human. Allowing our clients to feel connected to us. That is why comparison is the true thief of joy. We cut ourselves short, most importantly we cut our clients, family and friends short as well.


What I have found is woman to woman we are the hardest on one another. I shared with you earlier about a fellow agent in the business who felt the need to compare our businesses and give me unsolicited advice. If you hadn’t guessed it already she is a woman. I have spoken with many women recently both in real estate and other businesses and the one experience commonly shared as they have endeavored to accomplish their goals is dealing with women who instead of supporting their success, compete with or sabotage them. Women often feel justified competing with other women for many reasons. I will share with you some of the most prevalent ones that some friends recently shared with me. This message is so powerful. Not only for ourselves it affects our children and grandchildren. If we can get this message and impart the wisdom into our own lives, we will be able to have amazing relationships with ourselves. It is only when you have an amazing relationship with yourself, bringing out the best in you, are you then able to bring out the best in your children. I want my daughter Layla Grayce to be proud of her Momma and learn this at a young age. 


Insecurity. The definition of insecurity is self-doubt, not confident or sure. I remember in the sixth grade I had a tightly knit group of female friends in elementary school. We were the starting five on the girls’ basketball team. We felt important and exclusive. Four of the five of us had an early growth spurt. One day on the bus to a game I was chatting with the four girls I considered friends. After all, we were the dominant girl force in our little universe. As we were chatting I watched one of the girls examine my legs propped up on the seat in front of us. “Look”, she said, innocently enough, “Betsy hasn’t ever shaved her legs yet.” And she was right. I remember coming home after that basketball game and insisting to my mother that I had to begin shaving my legs. I thought I needed to hold to their expectation of shaving my legs at the age of twelve. That somehow their opinion of me was fact and the need to fit in was more important than if I was really ready. I felt stupid. Less than. I had to begin shaving now so they wouldn’t keep pointing it out and making fun of me. Women compete, compare, undermine and undercut one another --at least that seems to be the dominating approach of how we relate to one another.

By shaving my legs soon after that encounter I was proving a point. I had a need to prove that I could fit in, by comparing with the other girls who had already begun shaving their legs. It seemed at the time like such a small thing but I truly wasn’t ready yet. What I was truly longing for was a need to be accepted. I thought by shaving my legs they would accept me. Turns out they didn’t truly have my best interest. Turns out they really wouldn’t be lifelong friends. Turns out the starting five was made up in an effort for each one of us to feel important and exclusive. A fabricated friendship. We were only using one another to feel good about ourselves.


How many women do you know today who are using one another to feel important, exclusive and accepted? It is in fact an artificial friendship. There is nothing authentic, sincere or genuine about it. The reality is that women don’t have to devalue other women to find value within themselves. When we are fully able to see that we each are unique beings, then we can understand why we don’t have to prove how worthy we are by putting other women down. If you want to better yourself, it does not take tearing another woman down to do so. You are your own competition, so start there. We are worthy just as we are, and its time we all started to believe that.


A part of the “competition” between women is due to the fact that we’ve bought into the idea that there is some sort of “limited stock” that we’re all trying to attain. Whether that’s the ideal man, some perfect beauty standard, perfect mother award, or a checklist of accomplishments. Somewhere along the way we have been convinced that for one of us to have it, someone else needs to not have it. It ends up making women a threat to other women. We see it on a larger scale in celebrity culture all the time -- “Who wore it better?” etc. On a smaller scale we see it as we scroll through our social media newsfeeds. It is like we are always trying to one up each other. When we post the picture of the most Pintresty party, a perfect family photo or how skinny we look in an outfit. We are putting these perfect moments out for the world to see and which lead to manifest shaming other women, disempowering them as they walk away feeling outdone. Whether we are doing this consciously or subconsciously it is an issue of misplaced self-worth.


It’s women’s emotional intelligence and compassion that make us fantastic leaders. Women who compete successfully have a self-assured awareness, a positive self-image, self-direction, are assertive when they need to be, and are aware of their own strengths and the strengths of their colleagues. Here are some final thoughts to getting this “thief” under control. It boils down to embracing other women as allies, whether that’s at a mother’s group, with our friends, in the real estate community or within business in general. Women should be kinder and stop competing against each other. We forget to appreciate how far we’ve already come in the direction of our dreams and goals because we are always chasing and comparing. Comparison after all is the thief of joy.

I challenge you to spend some time today or within the coming days thinking about how fabulous you are and reminding yourself of a couple of your unique and special qualities. Don’t pick the easy stuff. Dig deep and remind yourself of the good stuff that only you can bring to the table.

 

Thanks for taking the time to stay and see what my latest published book is all about.

- Betsy

A Day at the Park with Lynchburg's Finest!

It’s July, which means warm afternoons for grilling, playing and outdoor adventures! Many people enjoy the serene summer evenings from the comfort of their own yard, but for those longing for a game of ultimate Frisbee, a peaceful stroll, a picnic with friends or that perfect play-place for your little ones, there is nothing quite like a summer sunset in your favorite outdoor oasis! We are highlighting just a few of the more than 15 parks the Lynchburg area has to offer.

A stroll through nature is unparalleled on a summer evening in Central Virginia. The Blackwater Creek Trail is a paved paradise for walkers, runners, bicyclists and skaters alike, which includes a rustic pedestrian tunnel carved into the bedrock. It is the perfect way to spend an evening whether you need time alone, or are looking for a romantic leisure walk with your special someone. If you are craving fresh air, a change of scenery and perfect way to start or end your summer day, take a look at Blackwater Creek!

               Blackwater pedestrian tunnel

               Blackwater pedestrian tunnel

For a more active park experience, Peaks View Park is central to the Lynchburg, Forest and Boonsboro area. This is the largest park in town and offers tennis and basketball courts, as well a myriad of picnic pavilions, trails by the creek, multipurpose fields and of course, a playground. This is a perfect place for the whole family with a little something for everyone!

                                                    A creek at Peaks View Park

                                                    A creek at Peaks View Park

We could not talk about parks without thinking of something specific for the kiddos! Whether you are babysitting, need a place to take the grandkids, or looking for a way to spend the day, look no further than Riverside Park. This historic park is just moments away from downtown Lynchburg and offers a recently built playground as well as an epic waterpark, Sprayground, for those especially hot summer days! Pack a lunch and some sunscreen and head to Riverside Park for memories that will last a lifetime.

                                                          Sprayground!

                                                          Sprayground!

Last but not least, we can’t forget about a place for your best friend, the  Lynchburg Dog Park. As the name suggests, this park was designed with your faithful companion in mind and is the only off-leash park in the area. This is the perfect place to take your furry friend to meet other pups and exert some energy.  (Pictured right: The Ferguson’s dog enjoys an afternoon in one of Lynchburg’s parks!)

The Ferguson family dog enjoys a day at one of Lynchburg's parks!

The Ferguson family dog enjoys a day at one of Lynchburg's parks!

For more ideas on fun things to do in the Lynchburg area, keep an eye on theblog for Lynchburg’s Finest!

1212 Forest Edge Drive Forest, VA 24551

Well maintained, Like-new, one-of-a-kind, custom built home located in the Forest community. Home is less than 4 years old. The hand scrapped hardwoods through out the main level will not disappoint. The kitchen features a stainless steal package, granite counter tops & an island for eating. Great pantry storage has been built by the seller under stairs. This house features 4 bedrooms & 2.5 baths as well as an additional bonus living on the main level. The master suite will be a spa-like retreat with the well-done tile shower & soaker tub. A mud room/laundry will fit your needs as a drop zone as you come home. The full privacy fence worth $16k won't disappoint on Summer nights grilling out and enjoying the fire pit with your best of friends in the private backyard. Lots of space for your growing family. This is the only home in the community with 3 different living spaces that will fit any space needs you may have. This one won't last long. Entire home just been freshly painted.

Got questions?  Drop us a message below!

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Would you like to schedule a showing?

Just call 434-381-3085

2016 Easter Egg Hunt

Lynchburg’s Finest team had a great time with the Open House and easter egg hunt on March 20th! It was held at Cornerstone and we had a great turn out. Along with the home tour there was a grand prize for the parents and an easter egg hunt for the children. Thank you to all who came out for this year’s easter egg hunt with the Cornerstone community!

1415 Destiny Lane Forest, VA || Priced Well Below Market Value

$350,000 | 5 bedrooms | 3.5 baths | Over 3,000 finished square feet | Custom designed & built in 2013 | Hand scrapped engineered hardwood floors | Soft close drawer cabinets | double pull out trash can | Upgraded trim work through out the home | Custom fireplace with hidden alcove for electrical boxes | Plantation blinds through out the entire home | Large bedrooms | Custom walk-in master closet with laundry chute | Cedar Beams | Barn Doors | Stacked stone | Custom made bench cushion from Ballard Designs | Large mudroom | Mother-in-law suite in basement with all the amenities (Can Rent for $800 a month) | Separate Driveways | Oversized garage | Large attached storage shed behind garage | Corner lot | .6 Acres | Mountain Views | Friendly neighborhood | Peaceful breezes 24/7 | This home won't last long!

Got Questions? Drop Us a Message Below

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Don't Forget

OPEN HOUSE APRIL 9 & 10TH, 2016

Saturday 11am-2pm & Sunday 2-4pm | Located in the Autumn Run Community

Watch Betsy on Living in the Heart of Virginia!

Recently, our Founder Betsy Ferguson was featured on Living in the Heart of Virginia! Check out her spot here!

Betsy Ferguson - Air Date - 3-24-16Hear the story behind how one local business woman has found success!

Posted by Living in the Heart of Virginia-LHOV on Thursday, March 24, 2016

For more information on the book to which she contributed, The Success Chronicles, click here!

For all your real estate needs, give us a call at 434.381.3085 or visit lynchburghousesforsale.com.