The Willowsford, Virginia Lifestyle
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VOL. II | 2013 | $4.95
– OCTOBER 5TH 12-4 PM –
NEW LOCATION This year’s Taste of Willowsford will be at The Lodge at Willow Lake, the newly opened community center in The Greens village.
The Life of a Local Legend What Kids Learn From Fish Setting Up a Farm Kitchen Win a Stay at Salamander Resort & Spa
Come sample life at Willowsford with our Farm Market, live music, local artisans, fall fare, kids’ activities, and tours of historically inspired architecture. Visit TasteOfWillowsford.com for details and directions!
CAMBERLEY HOMES at Willowsford
– OCTOBER 5TH 12-4 PM –
Farm Market Local Vendors Delicious Fall Fare Chef Demonstrations Tours of The Lodge Hay Bale Maze
Camberley Homes, formed by Winchester Homes, one of the region’s most respected names in residential homebuilding, was created to provide its clients with not just a distinctive home, but with a customized homebuilding experience. Designed exclusively for the unique villages at Willowsford, the architecture of Camberley’s Willowsford Collection will feature a classic/contemporary feel – open floorplans, abundant windows and flexible spaces that can easily accommodate today’s diverse living styles. Ranging from approximately 4,000 to nearly 5,000 square feet of quality craftsmanship and stylish comfort, Camberley Homes at Willowsford will offer timeless architectural designs and a personalized home buying experience on beautiful wooded ¾- to 1½-acre home sites.
Ice Cream Truck Live Music Kids’ Potting Station Wine and Beer Tastings Meet the Builders and Tour Beautiful Model Homes! Visit TasteOfWillowsford.com for details and directions!
Single-Family Homes from the high $700s | Willowsford.com/Camberley 23510 Founders Drive, Ashburn, VA 20148 | (703) 258-9335
thoughts from the field
Letter from Willowsford They say autumn is the season of harvest. A time of abundance, thanksgiving and preparation for the winter’s rest. I’m not sure about getting a winter’s rest in our busy world, but we always look forward to the change of seasons at Willowsford, and a good walk in the autumn woods. We’re celebrating another successful growing season at Willowsford Farm; 2,000 acres of scenic open space throughout our community; and the enjoyment of living in such a richly layered place as Loudoun County. And as for the rest part, I know our farm crew will look forward to some well deserved time off! No one works harder than our farmers. Throughout each issue of Inspired, we share the stories of the people who give Loudoun County its unique character, either through their business endeavors, stewardship activities, or through the sheer impact of their lives. In this issue, it’s my pleasure to introduce you to Mr. Randy Rouse, a 96-year-old local treasure I’ve had the honor of knowing both professionally and as a friend. His remarkable life will leave an indelible mark on Northern Virginia – it certainly has on me. This is a man who has witnessed
Photo by Kiela Hall
the advent of the automobile and the cell phone in one lifetime, and makes good use of both! You’ll also love reading about the process of artisan cheesemaking (and how to make it at home), the insights of a 12-year-old fishing guide, and a drink you may not have come across just yet – a fermented tea called Kombucha.
A publication of Corbelis Development NOVA, L.L.C. Publisher: Willowsford, L.L.C. Managing Editor: Laura Cole Contributor: Fraser Wallace Advertising FraserWallace.com ©2013 Willowsford, L.L.C., Willowsford, Willowsford Conservancy, Inspired, Inspired Living, A Naturally Planned Community and are all trademarks of Willowsford, L.L.C. All rights reserved. Reproduction in whole or in part of any material in this magazine is expressly prohibited. Publisher reserves the right to accept or reject all advertising matter. The information, illustrations, maps, and depictions contained in this magazine concerning the Willowsford development are based on the current proposed development concepts; actual development may vary from what is depicted. As the vision for the project evolves, facilities, features and other components are subject to change. Certain features and amenities depicted within the magazine have not yet been, and may not be, constructed. Dues, fees and assessments may be imposed for the use of some amenities. Photographs and images are not necessarily of the Willowsford development, are for illustrative purposes only and are not intended to be an actual representation of any features or designs of any specific community, neighborhood, amenities, facilities or improvements.
I do hope you’ll mark your calendar for October 5th, and come join us in celebrating Loudoun County and the Willowsford lifestyle at the third annual A Taste of Willowsford. This year, A Taste of Willowsford will be held in The Greens village, at Willowsford’s newest addition, The Lodge at Willow Lake. Complete with a teaching kitchen and stunning views of the Blue Ridge Mountains, The Lodge may be like no other community center you’ve experienced. I look forward to showing you around.
Here’s to finding out what inspires you this season. All the best,
Brian Cullen President, Corbelis Development NOVA, L.L.C. The Developer of Willowsford
Fall 2013 1
thoughts from the field
The Modern Farm Kitchen Bonnie Moore
Letter from Willowsford Brian Cullen 4
good earth What’s in a Name? Building a Legacy at The Farm Mike Snow
drink local Not-So-Strange Brew Ralph Crafts’ Kombucha Alex Aloise
shop local The Fine Art of Woolworking Heidi Baumstark
heart and soul Salamander Resort & Spa Jaimee Reinertsen
inspired living Snapshots from Willowsford
eat local Everona Dairy Whitney Pipkin
The Value of Integrity One Builder’s Quest to Do it Right Jaimee Reinertsen
Unsung Heroes The Quiet Efforts of the Blue Ridge Wildlife Center Lorin Drinkard
rooted A Living Legend 96-Year-Old Horseman and Entrepreneur Randolph Rouse Jaimee Reinertsen
A Little Taste of Home A Look at Willowsford’s Yearly Celebration Alex Aloise
How to Raise a Fisherman Jaimee Reinertsen
A Final Bit of Inspiration
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What’s in a Name?
If you haven’t visited yet, come swing by The Farm Stand. It’s on Founders Drive in The Grange village of Willowsford. We’re open Wednesdays and Saturdays through Thanksgiving. We get a lot of visitors, resident and non-resident alike, and one of the questions I hear a lot is, “What is a Founder?” I love this question. It reminds me to question the names we choose for our places: what street do I live on, where’d the name come from, what does it mean, is it related to something historical that happened here, did Tall Cedars really grow here? In the case of Founders Drive, it was named to honor Willowsford’s first homeowners. But the question recently tagged a thought I’ve been ruminating on for the last year. Intended or not, when I hear Founders I think American founders: statesmen, philosophers, lawyers and inventors, generals and farmers. These were inspired people and The Farm does find inspiration from what they built. The genius of the men and women who birthed the country is not just what they did but what they did not do. Rather than make the rules, they made a platform from which to create a country over time. Times would change and there was a future they couldn’t see. What they did was share the responsibility for creation and upkeep with future generations. I hope that we are creating a similar foundation at The Farm. There are two aspects of The Farm to recognize: the production farm, which is run as a small business (under the Willowsford Conservancy) and manages itself as such, and the community resource that engages with the community on many different levels.
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Mike and Deb on The Farm
The mission of the production farm is first to grow food for local consumption, in a way that enhances our natural and agricultural resources, and so that The Farm is economically viable and self-sustaining. We have a lot of land and we want to grow a lot of food! We believe that the land here can support fruit and vegetables as well as livestock. If you visit The Farm you will see the beginnings of all of these – veggies and fruit for CSA (Community Supported Agriculture), chickens for eggs and goats for clearing and managing open space. We are a resource for fresh food, and we hope that all of the food we produce will be consumed right here in the community. But The Farm is also more than that; it has other functions in the community. We have potlucks and workshops, Happy Gardening Hours and kids’ activities, we’re a place for walking and discovering, and we provide space for gathering and learning. This might be a metaphorical “community farm” that exists alongside our crops, where we help grow things not edible but just as nourishing.
Willowsford Farm Garden
There is considerable overlap between the two things, but one compelling difference is that while farm production strategies are decided by the farmers, there are many stakeholders that create the “community farm.” What all this looks like in the future will be influenced by our residents and farm community and not just by our farmers. We can ask, what kind of resource can we be for individuals, for school groups, families, businesses, and neighborhoods? Do we want after-school or summer camp programs? Volunteer opportunities or school garden teacher trainings? Self-guided tours and workshops? Maybe just more benches for sitting?
Just as the community will continue to grow in the years ahead, The Farm will, too. You will see more acres under cultivation and more food at The Farm Stand; more CSA shares and more options available; the integration of livestock with plant production; and the addition of new enterprises. And I hope you will see more opportunity for interacting with the landscape here – agricultural, natural, and social.
The Farm can help facilitate what you want to make of your community just as the HOA can. You are a stakeholder and you are at the table – I hope you will help create that opportunity. Be great, Mike
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Photography by Molly Peterson
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A Living Legend by Jaimee Reinertsen
96-Year-Old Horseman and Entrepreneur Randolph Rouse
“I was just in the right place at the right time.” Sitting down to lunch at Clyde’s in Ashburn, Randolph (Randy) Rouse tells the story of his 96-year-long life. But the glint in his very sharp eyes and the mischief in his smile betray that there’s a little more risk, a little more calculation, and a whole lot more humor hiding under that story. And what stories he has. The many-time Virginia Sportsman of the Year, 51-year Master of the Hunt, owner of the Middleburg Training Track, and veteran Northern Virginia land developer is still actively engaged in his business pursuits and interests (including playing the saxophone), and still knows how to deliver a punch line. Born in 1916, Randy grew up in Newport News, Virginia. His father was hit hard by the Great Depression, so Randy was grateful to find work at the shipyard through his dad’s best friend. The skills he learned there turned out to be the ones that changed the course of his life. In 1946, he was drafted by the Army to serve in World War II. But before reporting, he saw an advertisement by the Navy looking for college-educated men with shipbuilding experience. As a member of the Washington and Lee Class of ’39, he had just that unique combination, and was assigned to Admiral Broskek. Over the next few years, he became the Admiral’s right-hand man and enjoyed “all sorts of authority I shouldn’t have had,” as he recalls.
So when the Navy offered him a career commission, he was surprised when the Admiral didn’t recommend him. “I thought we were friends,” Randy said to him. He chuckles remembering the Admiral’s response. “Look. You’ve never been to sea. You never went to Annapolis. I would not recommend you. You would not go up from the Lt. Commander you are. You’ll be much happier and successful in private industry.” That rejection launched him into a whole new life. (continued)
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Randy and his wife, Michele
Randy knew he wanted to stay in Northern Virginia, but he wasn’t sure what was next. “I heard this guy at a bar bragging about building houses. I thought, if this dumbass can make all this money, I believe I can do it, too.” He reconnected with a friend from Newport News who had become an architect in Alexandria, Joseph Saunders, Jr., and built 24 houses, 6 at a time, on “the crossroads with one car” now known as Tysons Corner. “We both made $50,000 that year (quite a bit of money in those days) and I thought, man, I have died and gone to heaven.” The lots he bought for $700 are the current site of the Tower Club. He has since built more than 1,000 homes in Northern Virginia, and was influential in formalizing the position of Fairfax County’s first building inspector, Dewey Croy. In 1950, Randy bought a 26-acre hilltop property in Arlington for $135,000, 10 acres of which are still the site of his landmark colonial-revival home. On a water-skiing trip in the mid-1950s, Randy met actress Audrey Meadows, now famed for her role as “Alice,” whom Jackie Gleason’s Ralph Kramden was always threatening to send “to the moon” in the sit-com “The Honeymooners.” They married in 1956, but split in 1958 as her career got too big for the marriage. Nevertheless, the house in Arlington is still called The Audrey Meadows Mansion by neighbors
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today, in honor of the good times they shared decorating the 19th-century home. It was also around this time that Randy found a love of steeplechase riding and fox hunting on Bowman’s Distillery property, which is now Reston. Many prominent folks participated in the Fairfax Hunt in those days, including a young Jackie Bouvier who was attending Madeira School.
Tysons Corner, Virginia
Through fox hunting and steeplechase racing, Randy later connected with the woman who would be the enduring love of his life, his second wife, Michele.
A fellow equestrian, Michele Rouse also rode with Jacqueline Kennedy Onassis in Middleburg years later. On one of these rides, the former First Lady admired Michele’s horse so much, she asked if she’d be willing to sell it. Michele agreed, and they arranged a date for Mrs. Onassis to come to their stables to ride it. Randy recalls her arriving in her Chevrolet, her groom in tow. “She pulled her boots on, rode the horse, and said she’d like to take her home for a few weeks if that would be alright. When she pulled away, we realized she’d left her riding boots behind. My stable man looked at me and said, ‘Mr. Rouse, give her the horse and sell the boots!’” (continued)
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rooted Connecting Friends in High Places Randy was good friends with George Preston Marshall, who owned the Washington Redskins from 1932 to 1969. “We never did business together, but we’d just pal around,” he said. “There was a time I offered to buy part of the team, but George said, ‘Why would you do that? The team only makes $100,000 a year, and that’s my annual salary.’”
Randy Rouse riding Cinzano
Randy didn’t buy the team but he often went along with Marshall to training camp, which for reasons lost to history, Marshall held in Los Angeles. Marshall never flew and took the train; Randy took a plane. Through Marshall, Randy became friendly with Jack Kent Cooke, who later built his sporting empire with the Los Angeles Lakers, Kings and Wolves. Always the straight shooter, Marshall warned Cooke when he came from Canada to buy part of the team, “The team makes no money. What money it does make pays for my house, my staff, and my apartment and local accommodations in New York.” Cooke said, “Welcome, partner!” He became a 25% shareholder in 1961, and the sole owner in 1985.
Photo by Douglas Lees
Dead Horse Running As for his own sporting endeavors, Randy earned acclaim for his 10 straight amateur steeplechase wins on Cinzano, his prized horse. Cinzano had a story, too, after being fraudulently proclaimed dead by a veterinarian who conspired to swap him with an almost identical horse named Lebon. When Cinzano (running as Lebon) won a turf race in New York as a 57-1 long shot, the veterinarian won $77,920 on his bet of $2,000, raising some eyebrows and catching the attention of a Uraguayan sportswriter who correctly identified the winning horse as Cinzano. Cinzano was barred from racing at the highest levels after that, but Randy bought him in 1977 and rode him in unsanctioned point-to-point races where Jockey Club papers weren’t required. Randy remembers him fondly. “He drew crowds,” he says. “He was so mild and gentle. Until he started running. Then you just held on and steered him.” At the age of 89, Randy bought the Middleburg Training Track. Asked why by a reporter, he said, “Because I’m going out in the saddle.” Ask him if he ever thought of retiring, and you’ll get a belly laugh that goes all the way up to his eyes. “No.” Summing up his story in his characteristic flair for understatement, he simply says, “I’ve had a better than average life. A longer than average life. I’ve had a good time.” On his way out of Clyde’s to the dog who waits loyally in his truck, Randy pauses to point out two oil paintings that hang on the restaurant’s thick stone walls portraying horse races most people don’t realize really happened. “Those are my horses. Those are my colors.”
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IntegrIty Homes at Willowsford
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Single-Family Homes from the mid $500s | Willowsford.com/Integrity 41025 Willowsford Lane, Aldie, Virginia 20105 | (703) 431-6589
Everona Farmstead sheep creamery churns out award-winning cheese with a story Rapidan, Va. – In the tasting room at Everona Dairy, Carolyn Wentz cuts careful slivers from wheels of cheese, some lightly golden, others tinted with age or red wine. Each one comes with a distinct taste and, it seems, a story.
“I came up with this one the day we had the earthquake,” she says, pointing out a manchegobased variety that is peppery and marbled with lines of vegetable ash, making fault lines across the wedges. Another, the Pride of Bacchus, is soaked in wine before aging, and the Shenandoah is dry-aged to infuse Swissstyle holes and a tangy flavor. But these varieties are only building on an already unique kind of cheese – the kind of cheese that comes from sheep. “What’s amazing is some people come here and are amazed you can milk sheep,” Carolyn tells me as we walk the mid-sized farm, located just off the beaten path midway between D.C. and Charlottesville. On one side of the creamery, the wool-laden sheep crowd around bins of alfalfa hay and corn that border the pasture. In a nearby shed are a few of the 400 lambs they produce each year (this Fresian breed is known for having twins). Some lambs will become milking sheep at this and other farms; others are sold as meat.
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by Whitney Pipkin
Photography by Whitney Pipkin
It’s a true farmstead operation. The sheep are born, raised and milked at the farm, and all their milk is turned into small, artisanal batches of cheese. By mid-morning, several of the ewes are lining up for the milking parlor. The milking starts at 5 a.m. and lasts until noon – only to start again at 5 p.m. All that milk makes 60 to 80 pounds of cheese each day, which is sold at the Purcellville Community Market, farmers markets from Vienna to Charlottesville, and a few Whole Foods stores. High-end restaurants like The Inn at Little Washington and Palladio Restaurant at Barboursville Vineyards also feature the cheese on their menus.
Most of Everona’s fare is made with raw milk and fermented for at least 60 days in a 50-degree “aging cave.” A puddle of water on the floor keeps things moisturized as the cheeses cure, improving both their food safety and flavor profiles. (The fresh cheeses like ricotta and mozzarella are made with pasteurized milk and aren’t aged.) Besides being easier to manage, Carolyn says sheep produce milk with twice the calcium and “good fat” as milk from a cow. “It’s the closest milk you’re gonna find to human breast milk, so your system can digest it easier than cow or goat,” says Carolyn, who learned the art of cheesemaking from a doctor. (continued)
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It was Border Collies that led Dr. Pat Elliott, Carolyn’s mother-in-law, to making sheep’s cheese in the early 90s. When her new hobby of sheep herding got expensive, she found a way for the sheep to earn their keep.
“She showed me one time and said, ‘If you don’t get it the first time, you’re not meant to be a cheese maker.’”
Dr. Elliott took a cheese course in Wisconsin and applied her fervor – the fervor of a woman who got her PhD when women didn’t get PhDs – to making sheep’s cheese. She maintained her general practice on the side.
After seven years on the job, Carolyn continues to churn out award-winning cheeses.
When she passed away last year, at 84 years old, Dr. Elliott made her family promise to keep the farm going as is. “I still think of it as hers,” Carolyn said of the creamery she now helms. She had been married to her husband almost 20 years before Dr. Elliott taught her the trade.
The Piedmont, a creamy, nutty manchego named after the farm’s locale, is its bestseller and the base for several flavored cheeses. Ribbons and medals from the American Cheese Society and other contests, earned over the past 15 years, cover one wall of the tasting room. For more information, visit EveronaDairy.com
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MAKING RICOTTA in the comfort of your home You will need: – Two stainless steel pots, one large (up to five gallons) and one small. – A large bowl, preferably stainless steel – One gallon of milk – ¼ Cup distilled white vinegar – Cheesecloth (can be purchased at most grocery stores) – Salt to taste
Directions: Fill the larger pot halfway with water and place smaller pot inside (to form a double boiler). Pour the milk and ¼ cup of white distilled vinegar into the smaller pot. Heat the pots to 160-170 degrees on the stovetop. You’ll start to see the whey separate to form the cheese. Measure the temperature with a thermometer and remove the pots from heat once it’s reached. Line a large bowl with the cheesecloth. Pour the milk and curds into the bowl onto the cloth. Then, pull the cheesecloth up by the corners to let the whey drain out. Hang the cheesecloth in a cool spot or the refrigerator over the bowl for a few hours or overnight to let it drain. Add salt to taste and serve.
at Willowsford At Pulte, all of our homes are Life Tested® because we take ideas from our own homeowners and use them when designing new homes. So our homes are constantly being updated with the innovations that come from the people who know how a home should function: the people living in them. And that means our homes at Willowsford won’t just be built for life, they’ll be built for how you live it. Pulte Homes is a subsidiary of PulteGroup, Inc., a leader in energy-efficient homebuilding that has won more awards for customer satisfaction than any other homebuilder. Each new home at Willowsford will be built with an unwavering commitment to quality and a disciplined approach to construction. Single-Family Homes from the $600s | willowsford.com/Pulte 41025 Willowsford Lane, Aldie, VA 20105 | (571) 367-4303
by Alex Aloise
The result is a beverage with an undeniably vinegar-like aroma and an unmistakably sweet taste, similar to apple cider. With roots dating back 2,000 years to the Far East, this “elixir of life” has been consumed for centuries for its anecdotal detoxifying and immune-systemenhancing qualities. Fans of the drink have credited it with helping everything from digestive disorders and thyroid problems to diabetes, high blood pressure, high cholesterol and even cancer. Ralph dismissed the nurse’s advice, but couldn’t ignore the sign that showed up on his doorstep the very next day. “I picked up our newspaper and threw it on the dining room table,” he recalls. “Wouldn’t you know it just happened to fall open to a full-page article about Kombucha.”
Photography by Molly Peterson
It’s probably safe to say that Ralph Crafts didn’t wake up on the morning of December 28, 2010, thinking he’d soon start his own tea company. In fact, prior to that date he had never even heard of Kombucha. The then-64-year-old Ralph had been working as the permanent caregiver to his ailing wife, Rosann, when her nurse suggested that they try the fermented tea.
“I’m a former Marine jet pilot,” Ralph says. “My idea of a health drink is Bourbon.” This sure didn’t sound like something made for sipping. Kombucha is made by combining sweetened black tea with a culture called a SCOBY (Symbiotic Colony of Bacteria and Yeast). The SCOBY looks like a thick, grey pancake, and is often mistakenly referred to as a Kombucha “mushroom,” despite it not being a fungus. That combination then ferments for approximately three weeks.
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With his interest piqued, Ralph began researching. He soon learned that it was possible to brew your own batch of the tea at home. With just one taste, he uttered four words that would change his life: “I can drink this!” Never one to settle for average, Ralph experimented further with his Kombucha by adding all-natural ingredients like strawberries, pure vanilla beans and whole cinnamon sticks, grown from his own harvests and local farms like Willowsford, in order to create the popular flavors he now sells today. A friend was so impressed with Ralph’s drink that he offered to invest in what is now MTO (Made-To-Order) Kombucha. With his garage now sanitized and converted into a fulltime Kombucha kitchen, Ralph spends his days brewing and bottling the tea before heading out from his home in Oakton, Va., to make deliveries, or offer tastings and demonstrations for non-believers. “The stores have been coming to us,” he says. “We got into our first store in May 2012. Now we’re in 14 others across Northern Virginia.” (continued)
“I can drink this!”
MIRACLE WORKER? According to Ralph, there aren’t many health concerns Kombucha can’t aid. – Better sleep, more energy – Improved digestive health – rich in probiotics – Weight loss (reduces cravings) – Improved liver health – Healthier skin – Lower sensitivity to allergies – Better joint health – Improved immune system – Reduced infections (e.g., UTIs, sinus infections) – Higher aerobic capacity – Faster recovery from weight training – Helps with symptoms of Lyme Disease – Helps with side effects of chemotherapy
Kombucha Buy Kombucha at the Willowsford Farm Stand!
Today, Ralph estimates that he sends out 100 custom 12pint cases per week, roughly 600 to 700 gallons a month. In addition to that incredible growth, Ralph also licensed his brand and brewing methods for all 18 of his original flavors to Trey and Ryder Williams in the summer of 2012. The brothers now run MTOK Sperryville, supplying the beverage to 11 stores throughout the area. As word and popularity of his tea has spread, Ralph has learned that it’s not just the taste that keeps people coming back, but the life-changing effects they tell him the drink has on their mind and body, too. Ralph says that it’s not uncommon for him to tear up when he hears stories like Pat McLaughlin’s. The 75-yearold suffered from debilitating arthritis for most of her adult life. She says that after only four days of drinking MTO Kombucha, she felt more relief than ever before.
“With my wife’s illness, she used to be in the hospital every three to four months. Since we’ve been making Kombucha, she hasn’t been hospitalized in almost three years.” Ralph says, “I had skin cancer. My skin is the healthiest it’s been. I’m even the same weight today that I was when I left boot camp at 18 years old, and I’ll be 67 in November. Rosann and I have felt the effects of drinking this. We know the benefits it can provide.” He may not have been thinking about Kombucha when he woke up that December morning in 2010, but now it’s those benefits that are front-and-center on Ralph’s mind every day. Because, he says, he doesn’t just work to make a drink every day. He’s working to make a difference. To try it for yourself, visit MTOKombucha.com
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Art The Fine
Woolworking by Heidi Baumstark
There are few things more comforting in the fall than a baby soft, finely woven woolen blanket. Especially when you know the care that went into making it. It’s a simple concept, but for Franny Kansteiner, proprietress of the 100-acre Gum Tree Farm in Middleburg, it’s all about doing what she loves, and showing that love through doing things right. So she raises organically fed sheep, and produces yarn, fabric patterns and fine organic wool products such as shawls, capes, sweaters, blankets, table runners, hats, gloves, 22 | VOL 2 FALL 2013
socks, booties, and adorable fleece baby outfits called “Gummy Bears” (a play off the Gum Tree Farm name). Customers can also purchase “Cuddly Bunnies,” lovable stuffed animal figures made from the super-soft wool. Best of all, Franny keeps the entire process – from pasture to product – right here in the U.S.A. The story of Gum Tree Farm opens 20 years ago by happenstance, as many great stories often do. One day, while waiting for her daughter to finish a gymnastics
lesson, she noticed another mom knitting with strands of beautiful wool. “I asked her where she got it and the lady said she spun it herself,” Franny says. The other mom ended up teaching Franny the charmed art of spinning. And, the rest is history. Franny’s 60-plus Merino sheep are Spanish-bred with lots of wrinkles (in this case, wrinkles are a good thing). “It means there’s more ‘real estate’ per sheep, meaning each sheep yields more wool,” she explains. Once a year, usually in May, ewes (female sheep) and rams (male sheep) are sheared. Lambs, under one year old, are not sheared since the shearing begins when sheep turn a year old. Each year, ewes produce about eight pounds of fleece and give birth to a lamb or two. The farm produces 300-400 pounds of wool each year, which ranges in colors from brown to silver to white with many creamy shades in between. The shearing process takes about two days. To ensure careful shearing, “We purposely take our time. Then, I gather up the filthy, dirty wool and send it to Green Mountain Spinnery, an organic processor in Putney, Vermont,” Franny says. Here, the fleece gets washed, carded and prepared into “rovings” which are long sausage-shaped strands of wool. Rovings are then spun into yarn with the help of a wooden spinning wheel. Hand-spun yarn has a natural, uneven, lumpy look proving it never touched a machine or witnessed mass production. As the wheel turns, the yarn gradually grows on the bobbin. After this spinning process, the yarn is plied (usually in two-ply strands), resulting in a “skein of yarn,” which is a bunch of yarn that is twisted or balled-up ready for skillful hands. The yarn retains its natural color or can be hand-dyed at Green Mountain Spinnery.
Katherine Berger of Berryville is a happy customer of Gum Tree Farm. Berger comments,
“I just started knitting last winter and I am so in love with her yarn. The colors are fabulous and it’s very easy to work with. I’ve made several neck warmers and they’re tremendously soft, warm and not itchy. What a lifesaver over our cold winters! I’m now making leg warmers.” Along with the skeins of yarn, Gum Tree Farm provides customers with a variety of woolen fabric patterns. “There are just a few mills in the U.S. that can take a small amount of wool like what we produce,” Franny says. One of those mills is Family Heirloom Weavers in Red Lion, Pennsylvania, which is a small weaving mill company; here, they take the yarn and weave it into cloth resulting in bolts of fabric. As true artisan weavers, they create fabulous works of art converting fabric into curtains, bedding, table runners and a variety of clothing items. A new line of garments and products will be released this fall. The process from pasture to product is definitely laborintensive. “I’m trying to keep the process from lamb to the end product all hand-made in the U.S. From the time I pulled that lamb out of the mom to the sweater on your back; it’s a long, extensive process,” Franny says. For those in the market for local organic yarn, fabric or fine woolen product, Gum Tree Farm is just the place. And no pulling the wool over one’s eyes here – unless, of course – it’s a warm woolen cap. Gum Tree Farm products are available online through the farm’s website and in specialty shops that carry unique yarns and fibers such as Stitch in Middleburg, Hunt Country Yarns in The Plains, and Fibre Space in Old Town Alexandria. More information about Gum Tree Farm can be found at organicwoolworks.com
Photo by Heidi Baumstark
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Salamander Resort & Spa Opens in Middleburg
by Jaimee Reinertsen In the heart of Virginia’s fabled horse country and wine trail, just west on Route 50, the charming town of Middleburg is already a favored destination for local art galleries, one-of-a-kind dining experiences and boutique shopping.
Now, just a 5-minute walk from the brick-paved sidewalks of this historic Loudoun County town, the 5-star-caliber Salamander Resort & Spa is hosting its inaugural guests. The grounds of this gracious, 340-acre estate welcome visitors through a winding tree-lined road bordered by rolling pastures. Guests can walk into town or take a horse-drawn carriage that replaces the more familiar hotel shuttle with a rural touch. Salamander Resort & Spa is the result of the vision of Sheila C. Johnson, local entrepreneur, founder and CEO of Salamander Hotels & Resorts. “The opening of this resort represents 10 years of hard work and dedication,” says Sheila. “From the moment I set foot on the land, I fell in love with it; I hope others will, too.” “The Main House” was inspired by Johnson’s own farmhouse, designed to make guests feel as though they are in a luxurious pastoral home, rather than a hotel lobby. In fact, check-in is not even visible from the entrance. Instead, a grand living room with fireplaces and soaring ceilings invites you in from a much more intimate entry hall.
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heart and soul
A brick-floored wine bar is adjacent to the living room, and is reminiscent of a vineyard tasting room. Partnering with local vintners, the Wine Bar will feature samplings of the finest varietals. It will also serve as the lunch restaurant. The Billiard Room, which is connected to the Wine Bar, offers a cozy wood-paneled entertainment spot. Both open onto a sweeping stone outdoor patio, with the lush green of the manicured Grand Lawn beyond. The octagonal restaurant called Harrimans showcases a 270-degree view of the lawn, pastures, meadows and mountains. The grandeur of its 42-foot-high ceiling is balanced by the down-to-earth feel of its wrought-iron chandelier and accents, and the comfort of Virginia Piedmont cuisine. But even that is getting a new spin by Todd Gray, owner and Executive Chef of the acclaimed Equinox Restaurant in Washington, D.C., who is the Culinary Director of the resort. Known for his passion for sustainable farming and the use of locally sourced produce, Chef Gray has developed a synergistic cuisine blending the Virginia and Italian Piedmonts that is as sophisticated as it is unpretentious. A full demonstration kitchen has been included for guests wanting to immerse themselves in a culinary experience. They may dine on the house special one night, then learn to cook that dish the following day using herbs and produce theyâ€™ll pick themselves from the resortâ€™s trellised culinary garden.
A 150-year-old stallion barn was an original structure on site, which has been preserved for fine private dining for groups of 20-25. For guests who come for the equestrian experience, Salamander Resort will be one of the few resorts in the country that also offers five-star accommodations for hoofed companions. Guests are encouraged to board their horses at the 28-stall stable, use the full riding ring and explore 10 miles of on-site riding trails. (continued)
In the heart of Virginiaâ€™s fabled horse country
heart and soul Sheila’s handiwork is also evident in the guest rooms, the relaxed elegance of which surrounds the senses in countryside calm. She designed the finely woven quilts on the foot of each bed herself. Each room features her photographs, while the Owner’s Suite includes equestrian artifacts from her personal collections.
“I want every guest to feel like they are staying in the home of an old friend or family member,” Sheila says.
Sheila C. Johnson, founder and CEO of Salamander Hotels & Resorts
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Private balconies in every guest room further the experience of letting the outdoors in, a concept which is completely embodied by the crown jewel of the resort, the spa. Stone walls are offset by gentle fountains on either side of the entry and wood beams on the ceilings. Private stone patios, exclusive cabanas and an infinity-edge pool blend in harmony with the natural surroundings. The result is a pastoral paradise, in one of Virginia’s most treasured historic towns.
“Salamander Resort celebrates the lifestyle of this area, which is completely unique to the country,” says Matthew Owen, Director of Public Relations. “Nowhere else can you find this combination of spa, equestrian and culinary experiences in the heart of horse and wine country, in a village with as much mystique as Middleburg.” It’s luxurious, to be sure, but what guests are looking for most is an experience they can’t get anywhere else. “The number one thing people want at this level is authenticity,” Matt says. “They want to fully immerse themselves in the local culture, not be in a resort that could be anywhere.” Local guests are also encouraged to enjoy the resort as a destination day trip. All facilities, with the exception of the fitness facilities, are open to the public. For reservations, visit SalamanderResort.com
heart and soul
Taste of Home A Little
by Alex Aloise
A look at Willowsford’s yearly celebration of inspired living
The crisp fall air mixes with the familiar aromas of homemade barbecue and freshly pressed apple cider. The sounds of a bluegrass band are accompanied by lively conversations and laughter without an age limit. Smiling faces are all around: some old, some young, some painted, some not. It’s fall in Loudoun County, which means it’s time for the annual Taste of Willowsford, a day of fun activities, good music, great food and grand new homes. Since the inaugural event in 2011, Willowsford has welcomed thousands of visitors to its 4,000 acres for the big event. Whether they come specifically to see the new homes or just to enjoy the amazing local food and spectacular surroundings, it’s the people who keep coming back who have turned A Taste of Willowsford into a new Loudoun County tradition.
– OCTOBER 5TH 12-4 PM –
“My family and I came to Taste of Willowsford for the first time last year and it was definitely a highlight of our fall activities,” said Charlotte Wright, a resident of Centreville, Va. “My son loved the pumpkin patch and we were really impressed with everything, from the food, to the beer and wine, the ice cream and the music. We certainly didn’t leave hungry!” With just two previous Tastes in the books, the annual event is still in its infancy. However, with each passing year, the size, scope and significance seem to grow, as does the community. As Willowsford continues to expand its family of homebuilders, A Taste of Willowsford serves as a marquee event on their calendar. For some, it’s their grand debut within the community. For others, it’s the mark of a new season, as it were, and a time to impress with new homesites and decorated models.
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As important as the event is for showcasing the builders and their homes, its primary purpose is spreading the spirit of community that is so deeply embedded into the Willowsford fabric. This naturally planned community is one with a profound connection to the land upon which it is built, and to the riches that same land provides. From the ripe, luscious fruits and vegetables at The Farm Stand, to the savory beef, pork and poultry barbecue, even to the wood picnic tables set up throughout the event, knowing that it all was grown and cared for in the same location where it is being enjoyed is something that few other communities can offer. Through this experience, along with guided nature walks across Willowsford’s rolling Loudoun County landscape and spirited conversations with local vendors, artisans, farmers and more, visitors to A Taste of Willowsford can feel that connection for themselves.
Each year, the team from Willowsford Farm has been on hand to answer questions from novice and veteran gardeners alike. The event gives residents the opportunity to interact with the dedicated individuals who harvest all of the community’s fresh, delicious food, while visitors are introduced to a farm-to-table lifestyle they may have yet to enjoy. For the day’s younger fans, hayrides, mazes, potting stations, pumpkin patches and more keep their smiles wide. Of course, what is a “Taste” of anything without a delectable assortment of culinary delights? The past two years have seen live demonstrations and tastings from some of the finest establishments in the Washington, D.C. area. In 2012, celebrity chef Mike Isabella brought his famous Goat Cheese Gnudis to the Willowsford amphitheater. Renowned beer expert Greg Engert hosted a craft beer
and artisanal cheese tasting, while Sonya Farrell of Tarara Winery showed off new ways to pair wine with BBQ. The Sinplicity Ice Cream truck was never short of patrons, and other tents offered up fresh fruit, vegetables, salads and desserts. Though it may be a “Taste” in title, for the past two Octobers, Willowsford’s annual celebration has filled the minds and bodies of both residents and visitors alike with the spirit of inspired living. A Taste of Willowsford, much like the community itself, has quickly become an integral part of enjoying life in Loudoun County.
Join us for the third annual Taste of Willowsford, in a new location: The Lodge at Willow Lake
October 5, 2013 Visit TasteOfWillowsford.com
MODERN Growing up, I spent summers with my grandmother in Cape Breton, Nova Scotia. She loved food and she ran a great kitchen. My grandmother was a consummate locavore long before there was such a thing, cooking simple, delicious meals over a wood-burning stove with produce from her garden and other local growers. Her kitchen was a community hub. You never knew who would come through the door. I met farmers, lobstermen and all the neighbors. Someone was always stopping in at my grandmother’s with a delicacy to share – freshly picked blueberries, a bushel of clams or homemade crabapple jelly. Strong connections were made through food and it was always a good time. So I felt entirely at home in my first chef job at The Inn at Little Washington in Washington, Virginia, after graduating from culinary school. Every day, local farmers would come to the Inn kitchen to barter. I’d hear a knock on the back door and wonder whether eggs, tomatoes, morels or even a truckload of blueberries awaited me on the other side. More than just a chef’s pleasure, it tied me to the land and connected me to my new neighbors in a way that nothing else could. (continued)
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by Bonnie Moore
homescape I had the same feeling of camaraderie and belonging all over again in a kitchen in Central Asia where the only common language spoken was dumpling. Chefs from 22 countries worked together to incorporate U.S. food donations into their regional specialty, transcending language and cultural barriers through cooking. The kitchen is an amazing place. Friendships are formed there, skills are shared, food is appreciated and, best of all, eaten. I’ve seen first hand how shared food experiences can create community. Loudoun County, with its rich agricultural tradition, is a perfect place to build food-based connections. We are fortunate to have many farmers as well as local artisan producers making wine, cheese and other foodstuffs. The fruits of their labor not only nourish us, they enrich our lives. Even in our modern environment, coming together to cook, converse and enjoy a meal is natural and easy among these rolling green hills. One of the many things I love about Willowsford is how the homebuilders are translating the communal aspect of cooking into their kitchen designs.
L O CAVO R E
For example, the openness of Beazer’s Ashland kitchen flows from the dining area to a casual living area. What’s great is that the chef is not sequestered to the kitchen, but part of the gathering. K. Hovnanian features an island with an extended lip, because they know it’s the best spot for breakfast in the morning, a casual conversation, and homework in the evening, so multi-tasking parents can help as they cook. Camberley’s model shows an exquisite wood-block island, and thoughtful features like a stock-pot tap right over the stove, to prevent hauling a heavy pot from the sink. And Pulte’s model has a curvilinear design that welcomes family and friends to gather around. If you’re looking for a little inspiration for setting up your modern farm kitchen, I’d encourage you to tour the model homes at Willowsford for design ideas. But all it really takes, after all, is good family and friends, and fresh food cooked with care.
Bonnie Moore Bonnie Moore is the Culinary Advisor for Willowsford
K. Hovnanian® Homes®
Pappardelle with Wild Mushroom Ragoût |
– 6 shallots, halved (skin on)
– Preheat the oven to 425ºF.
– 2 tablespoons vegetable or canola oil
– In a bowl, toss the shallots with 1 tablespoon of the oil, sprinkle with salt and spread on a baking sheet skin side up. Roast the shallots in the oven until they are soft and caramelized, about 15 to 20 minutes.
– ½ pound oyster mushrooms, separated from the clump and hand-torn into equal pieces, roughly the size of a quarter – ½ pound shiitake mushrooms, stemmed and sliced – ½ pound cremini mushrooms, sliced – 2 cups chicken stock or vegetable broth, preferably homemade or low sodium
– Heat the remaining oil in a large skillet over high heat. Add the mushrooms and sauté until they are brown around the edges. Add ½ cup of the stock or broth, garlic and thyme. Stir with a wooden spoon to release the caramelized bits that are stuck to the skillet and cook until the liquid has evaporated. Add the remaining stock or broth and simmer for 5 minutes. – When the shallots are cool enough to handle, peel, chop roughly and add to the skillet. Season to taste with salt and pepper. – Meanwhile, bring a large pot of salted water to a boil. Add the pasta and cook until al dente, about 8-10 minutes for dry pasta, 2-3 minutes for fresh. Drain, toss the pasta with the mushroom mixture and serve immediately.
– 1 teaspoon minced garlic
– ½ teaspoon fresh thyme leaves
Artisanal cheese, crusty bread and a salad of bitter winter greens, such as frisée, endive or radicchio, tossed in a simple blend of fresh lemon juice, extra-virgin olive oil and salt, would nicely complement this rich dish.
– salt and freshly ground black pepper to taste – 1 pound dried or fresh pappardelle pasta
For more great recipe ideas, visit Willowsford’s new recipe feature on our website. Willowsford.com/farm/recipes VOL 2 FALL 2013 | 35
One Builder’s Quest To Do It Right by Jaimee Reinertsen
That was the general decree of the homebuilding industry when Scott Gallivan, John Dec and Rob Hutzel started Integrity Homes in 2007. Not only was the market experiencing a downturn in real estate much worse than anyone anticipated, but the principals were also leaving pretty cushy 25-year gigs with national homebuilders to do it.
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Frustrated with the way stockholder pressures were influencing building decisions in the field, though, the group had been looking for their opening for years, vowing they would do it better.
“There’s an upside to the bottom of the market,”says Scott, President of Integrity Homes. “You can get in.” 2007 was their shot.
They added Bruce Gould, another veteran homebuilder, to their ranks and named the company Integrity Homes to capture the essence of what they’ve been doing ever since – building architecturally stunning homes at a quality level and pace that keeps them true to their vision, their homeowners, and themselves. Their tagline says it all, “Stay True.”
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homescape What it means for homebuyers is that they don’t have to compromise. “Usually, you have to trade something. If you want great architecture, you probably have to give on the interior space plan, or the choices, or the price,” says Marion Campbell, Director of Sales and Marketing for Integrity Homes. “At Willowsford, you really can have your one-of-a-kind home, and not have to compromise.” This is what attracted Dave Tenny, now a Willowsford resident, to Integrity Homes. “We looked for the right builder for about a year. We had a very particular idea of what we wanted, and Integrity was committed to making sure we got it. Our ideas were valued, and they made the daunting task of building a house an enjoyable experience.” Like all builders at Willowsford, Integrity Homes developed home styles that they’ll only build in the community, giving a lot of attention to the streetscape the individual homes create, as well.
Integrity Homes offers home styles as varied as Victorian, Georgian Folk and Craftsman (to name a few), but they were designed to work seamlessly together when next to each other on the street. Inside, it’s all about flexibility. “What we heard from buyers universally is that the kitchen is where everyone
“The point is,” Scott says, “you decide how you want to live in your house. Who am I to tell you what works best for you?” wants to be. So we made that flat-out jaw-dropping, and it’s the centerpiece of every home we build,” says Scott. “But around it, we kept all the rooms completely flexible, because maybe you don’t care so much about crown molding in the living room, but would love to put that money toward finishing out the basement.” Some other touches you might notice inside? Wide staircases, for one. “We know people stack things on the stairs they intend to bring up or down,” says Marion. “We’re pragmatic about that kind of thing, and consider real life in the details.” One thing is for certain: homebuyers are taking note. “If you love our designs, you are just not going to be able to find anything like them down the road,” Marion says. And the quality shows, too. “Our mantra is to build quality relationships by building quality homes,” Scott says. “Our cost-per-house in warranty items is the lowest we’ve heard of, which is a great way to measure the quality of the materials and workmanship. That makes for some pretty satisfied customers.” It’s also a little different that, in this case, the company’s homebuyers are also the principals’ neighbors. “This is our back yard, too,” Scott says. “John, Rob, Bruce and I all live in this area. We see our homeowners at the grocery store and at our kids’ schools. Building homes for people is personal. That’s why we do what we say we’re going to do.” As to their competitive position? Scott seems content. “I don’t care what the competition is doing. If we’re focused on doing the right thing and genuinely sincere in that effort, they’re chasing us.” So were they crazy? Probably. But people who change the status quo usually are.
Integrity Homes’ models are open in The Greens village from 11am - 6pm daily.
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What makes a Willowsford home unique?
2 4 8
1 3 9 7
Exterior home designs at Willowsford are based on historic styles prevalent in Loudoun County, including Federal, Folk Victorian, Gothic Revival, and Queen Anne. In deference to historic evolution, a Willowsford house mirrors the appearance of a house built over time. Requirements include the use of high quality materials and siting homes in a way that creates cohesive, appealing streetscapes.
INtEgRItY GrAYE HOme 1
9-FoOt CEIlINgS On THe FIrSt Fl OoR
CLAsSICAl EAVeS AND COrNICeS
MInImUm 4” WINDoW TrIM AND COrNeR BoArDS
The following are standards for homes as seen from the street:
CEmeNtIOUs CLApBoARD HArDIPlANK® SIDInG
- Exterior cladding must be brick, stone, stucco or cementious siding. Vinyl siding is not permitted.
HIGH QUALItY WINDoWS WITH AUtHEnTIC MUnTInS On THe EXteRIor Of THe GlASs
- Windows, glass doors, sidelights and transoms must have authentic-style exterior muntins on the glass.
ARCHItECtURAl-GrADE SHInGlEs Or StANDInG SeAM mEtAL
DOoRs, SIDeLIgHTs AND TrANsOmS WITH AUTHeNtIC-StYLe EXteRIor APpLIeD MUnTInS On THe GlASs
- Roofs must, at a minimum, have architectural-grade shingles.
TrIM WOrK StYLIsTICAlLY APpRoprIATe tO THe HOUsE
- Porches are encouraged that are classically designed and style-specific.
FUlL-SIzE FIXeD DOoRs AND WInDOWs INVItE PlEnTY Of LIgHT AND EmBrACe THe OUtDoORs
- Exterior-projecting fireplaces must be masonry.
- Garage doors are not permitted to face the street unless set back toward the rear of the house.
Renderings are artist concepts and elevations may include optional features. This floorplan is intended as a representation of the blueprints. Window sizes and placements are per elevation. Brochures are intended as use for illustrative purposes and are not a legal document. Contact Sales Manager for details.
Relax ... Enjoy the view!
We’ll handle the rest.
BUILD | LANDSCAPE MANAGEMENT
Willowsford at Sunset
K. Hovnanian Homes ®
K. Hovnanian® is a family-owned and operated, national homebuilder that has been committed to excellence since 1959, and today builds in the Northeast, Mid-Atlantic, the Southeast, the Midwest, Texas and Arizona. The company combines its national experience with a local focus in each market, which led the Willowsford development team to select K. Hovnanian® as one of Willowsford’s dedicated homebuilders. K. Hovnanian® custom-created a new line of homes specifically for Willowsford that captures Virginia’s history, with architecture inspired by heirloom family farmhouses and Colonial manors. Interiors offer up to six bedrooms and up to six-and-a-half baths, with up to 5,000 square feet of thoughtfully appointed space. Front porches and porticos enter into genteel, welcoming foyers, gourmet kitchens open to light-filled great rooms that are the hearts of the homes, and gracious owner’s suites soothe away the stress of daily life.
Single-Family Homes from the low $600s | Willowsford.com/KHov 23510 Founders Drive, Ashburn, VA 20148 | (703) 885-7183
Set in the rolling landscape of Loudoun County, the new community of Willowsford is as distinctive for its homes and natural community design as it is for what’s been left untouched – 2,000 acres of shared open space. Which means plenty of room to explore, to play, to grow, and to dream in nature’s own peace and quiet – right in your back yard. And that’s a good thing, because the best adventures begin and end at home.
America’s 2013 Community of the Year!
“Road of Plenty,” Winner – Grand Prize, Piedmont Council Taken at The Greens at Willowsford
The keystone of the Willowsford vision is “Inspired Living,” establishing grounded connections for the community and its residents to enrich their quality and variety of life. Willowsford draws on Virginia’s scenic landscape and rich agricultural heritage to create a community defined by its expansive natural beauty, unique and engaging recreational spaces, a strong food and farm connection, and activities that encourage an appreciation for the environment and land stewardship.
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Located in the heart of Loudoun County, Willowsford spans over 4,000 acres and is comprised of four distinctive “villages” interrelated within the framework of the overall community: The Grange, The Grant, The Grove and The Greens. More than half of the land in the community is designated to remain as open space under the stewardship of the Willowsford Conservancy, a nonprofit organization specially formed to oversee and maintain Willowsford’s extensive natural resources. This scenic naturescape strongly characterizes the traditional Virginia countryside, with lush
sford Story forests, rolling meadows and agricultural fields punctuated by hedgerows and woodland streams that are maintained through a variety of sustainable uses intended to connect residents to the land and its legacy, such as Willowsford Farm. This remarkable lifestyle connection is further enhanced by a variety of distinctive and engaging recreational areas and programs. Sycamore House and The Lodge at Willow Lake, two of the community centerpieces, include resort-quality amenities. These signature facilities showcase Willowsfordâ€™s farm-to-table attributes by supporting a variety of culinary activities, and have been thoughtfully planned to provide residents with a range of exceptional indoor and outdoor features that appeal to all ages, including two distinctive pool complexes with a spray-andplay park, state-of-the-art fitness facilities and a village green framed by decorative gardens. Willowsford has grown by leaps and bounds, having welcomed new builders and finished amenities, like two resort-style pools, an extensive trail network, a lake for non-motorized boating and fishing, an amphitheatre, a dog park, camping and interpretive nature areas, with plenty more exciting additions yet to come. The emphasis on open space as a recreational amenity, sustainable agriculture and the authentic character are all intended to integrate Willowsford into the local landscape in a way that has not been done before in Northern Virginia, creating a unique environment and a sense of place that sets Willowsford apart from other communities.
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Tenant House Information Center 23510 Founders Drive Ashburn, VA 20148 Boat House Information Center 41025 Willowsford Lane Aldie, VA 20105 Open Daily 11am - 6pm 571-297-2000 For directions, visit www.willowsford.com
Country Charm Modern Convenience Willowsford is located in the heart of Loudoun County, between Virginia hunt country and thriving eastern Loudoun County, at the foothills of the Northern Virginia Piedmont along historic Route 50. The community offers convenient access to transportation and major employment centers in Northern Virginia. Washington Dulles International Airport, Reston Town Center, Route 28, the Dulles Toll Road and I-66 are all accessible within approximately 15 minutes. The Metrorail extension to the airport and beyond to Route 772 (Ryan Road) is currently underway with projected completion in 2017.
Brimming with history, character, and economic vitality, the local landscape is a patchwork of agricultural fields, rolling meadows, woodlands, residential neighborhoods, shopping and public parks. Willowsford’s exceptional location represents a union between the typically suburban and more densely developed areas east and the pastoral countryside dotted with small hamlets further west. This duality supports the Willowsford vision to enrich the lives of its residents through meaningful connections to nature, neighbors, and Virginia’s rich history. Willowsford offers the best of all possibilities – the charm and character of the countryside with state-of-the-art amenities and a convenient location.
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Philanthr op y ucation Ed
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n tio ec
The Willowsford Conservancy advocates and encourages an appreciation for the environment and land stewardship. The Conservancy sets the tone for the community’s lifestyle by working to support the core Willowsford philosophies of interaction with the land, with nature, and with family and friends in ways that make everyday life here rewarding, fulfilling…and fun. The Willowsford Conservancy is a nonprofit 501(c)(4) organization, with the mission and authority to foster and preserve a true sense of “community” at Willowsford – a place where people put down roots, build relationships and get involved in a way that enhances their lifestyle and that of the community at large.
VA N C Y The objectives of the Conservancy are: • To manage and maintain Willowsford’s ‘naturescape’ of forests, trails, streams, parklands and agricultural resources. • To program educational activities and services that connect and enhance the lifestyle of Willowsford residents. • To establish a beneﬁcial relationship between other community governance programs and initiatives within Willowsford. • To provide a framework for supporting its operations, activities and services.
The Willowsford Conservancy was created to help residents connect with the land, with nature and with each other. With more than 2,000 acres of scenic “naturescapes” – including lush forests, rolling meadows and agricultural fields traversed by hedgerows and woodland streams – the sweeping Virginia landscape itself is one of Willowsford’s most important, defining amenities. The community’s naturescapes are interconnected by more than 40 miles of planned nature trails and walkways of varying intensity. So whether you like to hike, bike, or just savor incredible views on a quiet, reflective walk in nature, Willowsford offers myriad opportunities to connect with the environment and experience this stunning pastoral setting with family and friends.
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Inspir ed Liv 52 | VOL 2 FALL 2013
Qualities that redefine Virginia living: • Over 4,000 acres of natural Virginia countryside with 2,000 acres of open space, bordered by traditional low stone walls and four-board fencing along rolling pastures bounded by hedgerows and lush forested areas • An inspiring collection of ﬁne single-family homes • Miles of nature trails offering varying degrees of intensity for walking, hiking and biking • Willow Lake for canoeing, kayaking and fishing
The vintage 1948 Willowsford farm truck, the traveling "ambassador" for the community.
• Unique amenity areas for a wide variety of outdoor recreational pursuits, including a dog park, picnic and camping areas, and a sledding hill
• Willowsford Farm, offering fresh seasonal produce, an annual CSA program, The Farm Stand and a u-pick garden • Culinary classes, demonstrations and events in exceptional settings such as The Lodge at Willow Lake • Resort-style pools with cabanas and a children’s spray-and-play pool • Outdoor amphitheatre and village green for community and other special events • An engaging selection of programs and activities designed to connect adults, children and neighbors
What would you like to do today? Boating and fishing? Swimming? Hiking? Biking? Gardening? Yoga? Or perhaps, a cooking class or demonstration by a local chef to add to your own culinary repertoire? Willowsford offers all of these – and more! So, no matter what inspires you, outdoors or in, the community’s unique array of planned recreational and social amenities lets you and your family indulge in all of your favorite pastimes, and explore some new ones. Make every day a truly fulfilling experience in the scenic beauty of Willowsford. At Willowsford, the “great outdoors” is a signature aspect of life. With more than 2,000 acres of scenic naturescape – including forests, streams and meadows connected by miles and miles of trails – residents can exercise, spend time with neighbors, let their dogs play in the dog park, or just savor incredible views and a quiet, reflective walk in nature. VOL 2 FALL 2013 | 53
Farm-to-Table Comes Home
Farm-to-table food. Locally grown produce. Seasonal eating. These ideas have gained strength in Americans’ consciousness over the past few years. Now these healthy concepts “come home” through Willowsford Farm and the Community Supported Agriculture (CSA) program.
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Willowsford Farm’s homegrown harvests will include a variety of seasonal produce, and some that residents can even pick for themselves. Our farm is right at your back door, so it does not get fresher than this – from mixed vegetables and berries to flowers and herbs. Our professional farmer and staff ensure that everything produced by Willowsford Farm is grown with integrity using methods that enhance our natural and agricultural resources.
Each year, from May to November, CSA members enjoy a weekly farm share of fresh, mixed vegetables and fruit. Weekly newsletters inform members of the produce picks they can expect to find in that week’s share, along with tips and recipes from Willowsford’s Culinary Director on how to prepare them. Visit WillowsfordFarm.com to learn more and to sign up for the upcoming CSA program. VOL 2 FALL 2013 | 55
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The Sycamore House represents a true community hub for recreational activities and neighborly interaction in Willowsford. The centerpiece of The Grange, The Sycamore House engages residents and guests by interweaving the history of the area with local food and wine appreciation, social gatherings, and opportunities for relaxation. In keeping with the area’s agricultural heritage, the design for The Sycamore House is reminiscent of a countryside manor. The rambling “estate” also includes The Tenant House, constructed using repurposed stone and wood from a historical structure built on the property circa 1800. The Tenant House is a favorite gathering spot for everyone who comes to Willowsford. These exceptional locations, along with the resort-style swimming pool at The Sycamore House, have quickly become mustvisit destinations. The Tenant House Information Center welcomes visitors daily from 11am to 6pm.
The Lodge at Willow
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The Lodge at Willow Lake is a vibrant recreation area that embodies the active, natural lifestyle offered by Willowsford. Opening October of 2013, The Lodge offers inspiring views over its large sweeping lawns and across Willow Lake, framed by the picturesque meadow and forest beyond. Its architecture is a blend of sophisticated yet rustic design, reminiscent of a large family lake house. The centerpiece of The Lodge is its impressive resort-style swimming pool and separate spray-and-play pool for kids. The pools overlook Willow Lake, offering breathtaking views and an inviting panorama from the terraced sun deck. The Lodge is proud to be this yearâ€™s host location of Willowsfordâ€™s signature event: A Taste of Willowsford. The camp-like, fun atmosphere of The Lodge extends to the Boat House Information Center, located directly on Willow Lake. The Boat House is a great recreational amenity with a fishing pier, fire pit, grilling area and shed for kayaks and canoes. The Boat House Information Center welcomes visitors daily from 11am to 6pm.
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FUTURE HANSON REGIONAL PARK
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The Grange is defined by its natural setting, with rolling hills and woodlands traversed by Upper Broad Run, creating a timeless backdrop for the classic design features integrated into its traditional agricultural areas. The Grange is a key activity center located in the heart of the community and features The Sycamore House recreation center, The Tenant House Information Center, the Amphitheater, Willowsford Farm and a number of other unique amenity areas accessible from its trail network, including a dog park and community garden. 58 | VOL 2 FALL 2013
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Stretching from its secluded entrance off Evergreen Mills Road southwest to Route 50, The Grant is defined by its expansive natural backdrop, featuring lush forested areas and scenic meadowlands bordered by the hedgerows traditional to Loudoun County. A village loop and extensive nature trail network are designed to access the unspoiled beauty of more than 1,000 acres of naturescape, linking multiple parks and camping facilities. In keeping with its natural elegance and “wide open spaces,” The Grant offers some of the largest estate lots in Willowsford. VOL 2 FALL 2013 | 59
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The Grove has an active, outdoor appeal characterized by its mature forests intertwined by two woodland streams, a park and nature area, and its close proximity to The Lodge at Willow Lake, adjacent to its southern border (in The Greens). The character of this village is emphasized by a scenic, main thoroughfare running along forests and parklands to connect its individual neighborhoods. Whether an outing with family and friends, or a quiet contemplative stroll through the woods, The Grove inspires interaction with the land and with nature. 60 | VOL 2 FALL 2013
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The Greens is the largest village in Willowsford, defined by an extensive patchwork of scenic forests, meadows and agricultural land of rambling topography extending from Braddock Road down to its southern border along Bull Run Creek. In keeping with this diverse landscape, The Greens is designed to offer a variety of living and entertainment options. The Lodge at Willow Lake, a resident destination for sports and outdoor recreation, is located along its northern boundary. Nearby is the trailhead for a loop trail that circumnavigates the entire village with varying degrees of intensity to interconnect planned camping and picnic areas.
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The Willow 62 | VOL 2 FALL 2013
sford Home Willowsford introduces a distinctive selection of signature home designs on generous homesites up to two acres. Each collection of new homes has been exclusively designed by Willowsford’s builders to support the community vision and meet rigorous architectural design guidelines. Ranging in price from the upper $500,000s to over $1,000,000, these unique home designs are only available within Willowsford. The architectural design guidelines for Willowsford were thoughtfully created to capture the rich, varied character and charm of Loudoun County, and are based on three historical categories: Formal, Arts and Crafts
and Picturesque. This program establishes the design framework to create a diversified and scenic streetscape in harmony with the natural landscape of Willowsford and rooted in the area’s heritage. Each home design is further enhanced by a quality selection of building materials which support the architectural style, authentic character and the latest technology.
For more information about the current builders’ collections in Willowsford, visit the community website at www.willowsfordhome.com VOL 2 FALL 2013 | 63
• Leesburg • Ashburn D ul l
ay eenw Gr es
Washington D.C. 50
Tysons Corner •
• Fairfax • Centreville 28
© 2013 Willowsford, L.L.C., Willowsford, Willowsford Conservancy, Inspired, Inspired Living, and A Naturally Planned Community are all trademarks of Willowsford, L.L.C. (“Owner”). All rights reserved. Reproduction in whole or in part of any material in this magazine is expressly prohibited. Publisher reserves the right to accept or reject all advertising matter. The information, illustrations, maps, and depictions contained in this magazine concerning the Willowsford development are based on the current proposed development concepts and actual development may vary from what is depicted. As the Owner’s vision for the project evolves, facilities, features and other components are subject to change. Certain features and amenities depicted within the magazine have not yet been, and may not be, constructed. Dues, fees and assessments may be imposed for the use of some amenities. Photographs and images are not necessarily of the Willowsford development, are for illustrative purposes only and are not intended to be an actual representation of any features or designs of any specific community, neighborhood, amenities, facilities or improvements. The information in this magazine is only intended as general information about Willowsford and the surrounding community and is not an offer or solicitation to sell property. Lots within Willowsford are not for sale to individual buyers. Owner intends to only sell lots to unaffiliated homebuilders. If you are interested in purchasing a lot within Willowsford, please contact homebuilders building within the community. All information concerning homes and homebuilders within this publication was provided by the builders and not independently verified by Owner. Owner does not warrant or guarantee the obligations, construction, or pricing of builders who may build and sell homes in this community. Buyers of homes in Willowsford contract directly with the builder and must rely solely on their own investigation and judgment of the builder’s construction and financial capabilities in as much as Owner does not warrant or guarantee such capabilities, nor does Owner warrant or guarantee the design, pricing, engineering, construction, or availability of any home or any other building constructed by such builder or the obligations of any such builder to the buyer. This material shall not constitute a valid offer in any state where prior registration is required or if void by law. Owner encourages and supports an affirmative advertising and marketing program in which there are not barriers to obtaining housing because of race, color, religion, sex, handicap, familial status, or national origin. September 2013.
WillowsfordMG.com | 571-297-2000
Heroes by Lorin Drinkard
The Quiet Efforts of the Blue Ridge Wildlife Center The modern world can be a dangerous place for wildlife. Until 2004, there wasn’t any place in Northern Virginia that took in critters, big or small, who were orphaned or injured. But that was the year Dr. Belinda Burwell, a licensed wildlife veterinarian, started the Blue Ridge Wildlife Center (BRWC), a nonprofit rescue center in Millwood, Va., to meet the unfulfilled need. Tucked past the pine trees toward the end of Tilthammer Road, Northern Virginia’s very own animal ICU and
rehab center is set on the historic site where Burwell and her four-woman team run the BRWC. “There were a lot of species needing care but nowhere [for them] to go,” she explains. Inside the 800-squarefoot-small space, sky blue walls are decorated with a handpainted landscape – a black bear cub climbing a tree limb and a trio of owls huddling high on a perch. Rows of pet carriers are stacked up and across the far right wall. (continued)
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stewardship “People can’t see what we’re doing because we have to limit the animals’ exposure to people,” Burwell says, as she describes the BRWC’s mission and the work they do behind closed doors to nurture and rehabilitate Northern Virginia’s wildlife. To her right, a dark-haired intern cleans and feeds a litter of sleepy opossums on the same counter space. In the back of the office, two staff answer call-in questions and field requests for animal rescue. Since opening their doors, Burwell, who has a Zoology degree from Duke and Veterinary Medical Degree from Tufts, and her team have treated thousands of orphaned and injured wildlife in Northern Virginia. In 2005 they cared for 370. In 2012 that number jumped to 1,793. Some of the most frequent animals received are homeless squirrels, injured cottontails, birds and red foxes. The Center isn’t well-known because the focus is on keeping the rescued wildlife, well, wild. At the BRWC, animals are weaned into groups of their own species. “This is the key to keeping them wild,” Burwell says. “Nobody wants wild animals that are friendly and walking up to you. It actually takes work to keep them wild.” Right now, only the babies, sick and injured are kept indoors. They anticipate about 500 rescued animals this winter, and about 1,300 in the spring.
Dr. Belinda Burwell, wildlife veterinarian
A bald eagle mends broken wings.
Photography by Molly Peterson
The 200-year-old cottage-turned-animal-inn was passed down through her family (Burwell-van Lennep Foundation). The land on which they hope to build a new, adequately sized facility is right next door. The new building would have enough space for a state-of-the-art wildlife hospital, center for educational purposes and plenty of square footage to host a variety of animals. Although requests for school field trips to visit the BRWC are numerous, Burwell has to turn them away, opting to travel to classrooms throughout the area instead. But plans for the new facility offer climatecontrolled rooms, two animal nurseries, plus an environmental education center with wildlife exhibits and a classroom for visitors. Burwell hopes to impart to future generations an appreciation for the difference wildlife rescue really makes. She picks up a box turtle, who has been hit by a lawn mower, to make her point. “Unlike other younger species, box turtles don’t reproduce until their late teen years, so they have to live at least that long,” Burwell tells, tracing the long gash running down the injured turtle’s spine. “Keeping even one turtle alive is crucial to the future of the species.” To learn more or to help support the BRWC, visit their website at BlueRidgeWildlife.org
Spot an injured or orphaned wild animal? Dr. Burwell shares a few tips to keep in mind. Do make sure the animal is orphaned before calling their hotline (540-837-9000). Burwell suggests leaving the area for a few hours, then returning, as the mother may be nearby but out of sight. Don’t bring any wildlife into your home. It’s illegal, according to the Department of Game and Inland Fisheries, and it may be unsafe. Do look for nests before cutting down any trees or shrubs in your yard. Don’t lose hope if a nest has fallen. The BRWC team can guide you through how to put it back.
For more information on upcoming community events, visit Willowsford.com/news/calendar
How to Raise by Jaimee Reinertsen
“Many men go fishing all their lives, without knowing it is not the fish they are after.” – Henry David Thoreau Photos courtesy of Fish and Explore
Read. Retain. Repeat. To John Lipetz’s mind, that’s the method that’s most widely embraced for teaching children in the classroom. As he watched his own two children, Quinn, 12, and Rachel, 10, go through the school system, he realized they were learning entirely different cognitive skills through something they did as a family outside the classroom – fish. The trouble was, his career had him spending 70% of his time somewhere else. An avid outdoorsman and fisherman all his life, John started dreaming of a way to merge his passion for fishing with his passion for teaching children, and turn it into a full-time job. The result is now his expedition company, called Fish and Explore, which hosts week-long fishing camps for kids in Northern Virginia.
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A typical week includes a combination of fishing on creeks, rivers, lakes and the Chesapeake Bay. There’s the technical stuff to learn – rigging, casting and understanding gear. There’s the variety of fish species to learn about, to understand feeding habits and behavior patterns. And there’s the all-important CPR to learn – Catch, Photograph, Release. But the most important lessons come through something that happens in between. “Kids go through school with a pretty tight grip on them,” says John. “This is an opportunity for free play, which is a chance for kids to use cognitive skills on their own. To think, ‘I just caught a big fish in this hole, using this bait. Where will I find one again?’” John’s only rule is that each kid must catch a fish. Then, they can do whatever else they want if they don’t want
to keep fishing: build a dam, build a fort, skip stones, find crayfish, go for a hike – the possibilities of imagination and a little mud are endless. “When we were kids, we called that ‘Saturday,’” John jokes. “But there’s not much green space around most neighborhoods today, and it’s not always safe to let kids venture out on their own. Plus, we live in such a climate of structure and schedules, parents have no time to explore nature themselves. After camp, kids can actually take their parents to a lake, where they can read a book or learn to fish from their kids. It’s pretty neat.” The interpersonal skills kids learn are evident in his own son, Quinn, who is the company’s Chief Executive Angler & Nature Guide, according to his business card. Quinn has been assisting the Fish and Explore guides since he was 8, when he helped 13- and 14-year-old boys who were trying to pick up a worm using two pencils. He was a natural. “I see a big change in kids’ confidence and problemsolving by the end of the week,” Quinn says. “At the beginning, if they get their line tangled, they want me to fix it. By the end, they want to do it themselves.” Another big lesson kids come away with is respect for the natural environment. “We always ‘police’ the area,” says John, referring to picking up trash and litter. “At first the kids are kind of disappointed, but they soon want to pick it up, because they understand it means they’ll be able to keep fishing for a long time to come.” Finally, they learn something about neighborly kindness. Private landowners and farmers open up their properties to Fish and Explore because, John says, they understand the importance of kids learning to fish. “It’s nice to explain it’s a privilege to get invited,” John says. “I always tell them that kindness has allowed you to learn to fish.”
What’s the Hook? An escape: “Fishing is a way to be out and away from the noise. You can ponder the meaning of life or how many strands are in a string,” John says. An adventure: “You never know what you’re going to catch,” says Quinn. “It’s very cool to say you conquered.”
A competition: “You have to read the water, identify where the fish are, what they’ll eat, and convince them your imitation bait is tastier to try to get the biggest and the best fish,” John says.
Camaraderie: “You fish with and against people,” John says. Quinn disagrees. “You go with other people so you can prove you’re the better fisherman,” he laughs.
For more information, visit FishAndExplore.com
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inspired refl ection
“Autumn... the year’s last, loveliest smile.” – William Cullen Bryant
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Arcadia Communities At Willowsford Arcadia Communities is a family-owned company with over 50 years experience in the new home building industry in the Mid-Atlantic and the San Francisco Bay area. Exceptional features and finishes that are typically considered upgrades by other homebuilders are standard at Arcadia Communities. We offer more for your investment with proven building practices and materials that provide more energy efficiency and lower utility costs. At Willowsford we are introducing brand new home designs exclusive to the community with an unexpected openness that seamlessly integrates the natural beauty of the surrounding landscape with the interior elegance of floor plans that celebrate the way you want to live today. A real breathe of fresh air compared to the same-old cookie-cutters.
With Arcadia Communities at Willowsford get ready for unparalleled service from start to finish. Get used to g et ting more!
Single-Family Homes from the low $800s | Willowsford.com/Arcadia 23510 Founders Drive, Ashburn, VA 20148 | (703) 327-7400
At Willowsford Beazer Homes, one of the top ten homebuilders in the U.S., is pleased to present three, brand new home designs at Willowsford. Each of these homes is inspired by craftsman-style architecture reflecting old-world style combined with the modern conveniences you love. Homeowners will love the welcoming front porches, gabled roofs and multitude of windows that each of our exteriors will offer. The interior of the homes feature between 3,090 to just over 3,620 square feet of finished living space, 4 bedrooms, 2 ½ to 4 ½ bathrooms and a variety of high end details and finishes. Beazer builds homes that meet and exceed ENERGY STAR® requirements offering increased savings and a lower ongoing cost of ownership.
Priced from the Low $600s Boat House Information Center 41025 Willowsford Lane Aldie, VA 20105 703-327-2964 Model Open Daily 11-6pm
Willowsford.com/Beazer Prices, features, and availability are subject to change at any time without notice. Homes started after 2/14/11 will be ENERGY STAR® homes. To find out whether a particular home is qualified, contact your Beazer New Home Counselor. ©2013 Beazer Homes
FARM-TO-TABLE COMES HOME As part of the Willowsford community, Willowsford Farm makes “locally grown,” “farm-to-table” and “seasonal eating” a part of everyday life.
“Willowsford Farm has done a fabulous job of bringing fresh farm fare back to the table for our family.”
The Farm Stand in The Grange offers: • Produce and prepared foods • Gardening workshops • Cooking demonstrations • Children’s programs
–Willowsford CSA member
The Farm Stand is open May through November. Check our website for updates!
Visit WillowsfordFarm.com to sign up for the 2014 CSA and to learn more about Willowsford and Willowsford Farm.
Willowsford is a 4,000-acre community in Loudoun County, 2,000 acres of which have been conserved for environmental preservation, recreation and agricultural use.
WillowsfordFarm.com This material shall not constitute an offer or solicitation in any state where prior registration is required. © 2013 Willowsford, L.L.C. Willowsford, Willowsford Conservancy, Inspired Living and A Naturally Planned Community are all trademarks of Willowsford, L.L.C. September 2013.
Where Your Home Comes with a 2,000-Acre Back Yard. Inspired Single-Family Homes in America’s 2013 Community of the Year*
WillowsfordMG.com *National Association of Home Builders. Prices and terms set forth herein are provided by homebuilders within Willowsford who are not affiliated with the owner and developer of the community. Such prices and terms, and the quality of the home builders’ homes, are not verified or warranted by owner Willowsford, L.L.C. or its affiliates. Dues, fees and assessments may be imposed for the use of some amenities. This material shall not constitute an offer or solicitation in any state where prior registration is required. © 2013 Willowsford, L.L.C. Willowsford, Willowsford Conservancy, Inspired Living and A Naturally Planned Community are all trademarks of Willowsford, L.L.C. September 2013