The Journal’s Potomac River Festival, May 2013 9
High Tides’ new palm trees signal a Rockin’ Beach Season Richard Leggitt
Nine new palm trees. A large new outdoor grill. An enlarged and improved stage. Newly painted tropical colored chairs. Wines from the Trump Winery. And, almost 40 popular bands on the summer schedule. With another summer at the beach here, High Tides on the Potomac plans to be ready! The family built and owned restaurant and bar has become an essential part of the food, fun and music that has made Colonial Beach popular for generations. “We’re working hard, so Colonial Beach will come back and be what it used to be,” said Vickie Coffman, who with her husband, Bryan, and her children built and opened High Tides in 2005. Today, with 65 employees, their restaurant and bar is one of the town’s largest private employers. To get ready for a new season, Vickie and Bryan had nine palm trees trucked from Florida to replace palms that died during the cold winter weather. They built a large outdoor grill next to the Black Pearl Tiki Bar that will serve barbeque, burgers, kabobs and islandstyle pork chops to accompany the beer, wine and frozen drinks served at the bar. — Vickie Coffman The Coffmans painted many of their outdoor chairs in tropical island colors and this summer they will be the first restaurant in the area to serve wine from Donald Trump’s new Charlottesville winery. And, the Black Pearl Tiki Bar has an expanded stage that will host a wide range of rock and blues bands from May 4 through Sept. 8. Free concerts will be held almost every weekend. High Tides, located on the Colonial Beach Boardwalk, will of course continue to serve the steaks and seafood that made the restaurant one of the premier dining facilities on the Potomac River. “We try to be the best we can be,” said longtime employee Bonnie Gysel. The credit for the growth and success of High Tides and the Black Pearl Tiki Bar goes to the Coffmans and their hard-working family and friends. “We bought the beachfront property and then went to South Carolina and Florida looking at different venues that we thought were unique,” said Vickie. “We combined the best of what we found.” Bryan served as general contractor, and the construction of the riverfront restaurant was done by the Coffmans, their three sons and several longtime family friends. Today, the Coffmans are hands-on managers of the popular restaurant and bar with the help of one of their sons, a daughter-in-law and two of their granddaughters. This year, Mondays will again be Game Nights featuring darts and other games; Tuesdays will be Movie Nights with popcorn, drinks and feature films under the stars; and on Wednesdays and Thursdays, Rockin’ Roger, a local musician who is a one-man rock band, will entertain guests. The weekends continue to draw top billings and top crowds ending with Doug Parks and the Lonewolves on Sept. 8. Other summer weekend entertainment will include a long list of popular bands and featured special events for the June 21-23 Blues Festival, the 4th of July and Labor Day weekends. “Colonial Beach is such a great place,” Vickie said. “It’s a little hidden secret. We want to help get the word out.
“We’re working hard, so Colonial Beach will come back and be what it used to be.”
New Palm trees greet you at the entrance to High Tides
MUSEUM At Colonial Beach
Hometown Feeling With Uptown Style...
Enjoy the 62nd Potomac River Festival • Creative Cutting & Styling • Corrective Coloring • Foil Hi-Lo- Lighting • Tanning • Dimensional Coloring • Perms/Chemical Hair Straightening • Facial Waxings • Updo, Styling & Makeup for Weddings & Special Occasions 11528 Ridge Road, King George, VA 22485
Now Offering Facials & Full Body Waxing
Celebrate History Come in and learn what has drawn visitors to our shores since the nineteenth century through exhibits, pictures and videos. 128 Hawthorn St., Colonial Beach, VA 22443 (corner of Hawthorn St. & Washington Ave.) Hours: April 13 • December 14 Saturday, 1-4 & Sunday, 1-4 For further information please call