A very thankful 2016

As we see 2016 come to an end, there is so much to be grateful for here at Valley Pike. Starting a new business has plenty of ups and downs but the support we’ve seen since the business opened is amazing.  If you asked the Gardners (our owners) last December where they thought the Market would be in a year, I suspect they would have both looked at each other and responded “hopefully open -  with customers!” Well, we’re open and in awe of the changes that 2016 held for this old barn!

January through May 2016 saw lots of nails, hammers, and hard work to get this timeworn barn back in shape.  Restoring a 125-year-old barn, that hadn’t seen much love in the past 30 years, wasn’t a small task. During that time, our owner David brought Brian on staff who would help turn the Market into the store you see today.  With years of experience in the industry, he knew all the right people and companies to help Valley Pike’s dream of being a resource for Virginia farmers and their products become a reality.  He also decided to bring on a Marketing & Events staff member (yours truly) to constantly request and dream up new events and festivals for a building that wasn’t even finished when I began brainstorming!

June was the month the barn was finished and beautiful, if I do say so myself! Plenty of work was still going on inside the building to get items ready for food, coffee, and client visits but the bones and core of this barn were complete! Community members constantly drove into the parking lot to peer into the windows for a glimpse at what this new attraction might be.  All the while we thought to ourselves, “don’t try and come in, it’s a liability, but please come back when we open!”

“Can we open now? If not now, when?” was the repeating question at each and every weekly staff meeting in July (and those questions came from me). The constant reminder that the Market was so close to being ready but we still needed workers hired, time to place orders, and actual products to sell, so we just weren’t there yet. However, the Granary, our event venue, was finished and picture ready… ready enough in the minds of Sidney Gardner, owner of Sidney Leigh Photography, and myself.  A mock wedding shoot was the perfect opportunity to highlight the repurposed downstairs that had at one time held livestock but would now hold lively events, music, dancing, and weddings. Sidney collaborated with local vendors and friends to make our blank canvas come to life and picturesque for any couple. The photo shoot couldn’t have been more of a dream come true… even with a surprise proposal from our mock groom to his bride, who will be getting married here in the Granary June 2017!

Styled Shoot The Granary Valley Pike Farm Market-Bride Groom Portraits-0072.jpg

We also had our parking lot buddy, the Valley Pike BBQ truck, open a new option, The Old School Burger Bus.  Considering our own food options weren’t ready yet, our staff can vouch for both trucks and a majority of the menu options at each… take our word for it, if you haven’t eaten at one or the other you need to as soon as possible!

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August, oh August! You were a blur of cardboard packages being opened and stocked, late nights from our managers, and prayers that the doors could open successfully for business. Our Preview Night for the community members and partners that helped us create this beautiful space was held August 4, 2016. Our chance to thank the people who refurbished the building, helped complete our paperwork, and supported this project from its beginning as just as a vision to real-life local business. Preview Night marked the final push to get everything ready before our soft opening to the public on Monday, August 22, 2016. We had two weeks from Preview Night to make sure when the doors opened the products were not only here but people could actually buy them! We thought we would open quietly and hopefully ease our staff into the Market’s opening with a Grand Opening Weekend in September… boy, were we wrong! You came out in droves and your support was incredible. Whether it was driven by curiosity, support for the Gardners who had put so much passion and love into this project, or just plain happiness that there was something in Weyers Cave… you came!

By the time our Grand Opening was here on Labor Day Weekend, we were off and running! On September 3rd, the Rumor Mill Coffee Company opened at 6:00am with the rest of the Farm Market open at 8:00am to the public. Community members were able to enjoy tours of the building, door prizes, specials, and live music from Little Walter and the Convictions from 7pm until 9pm, to end a full, fun-filled day. September 4th you pulled up a lawn chairs on a beautiful evening and enjoyed music from the Travelin' Hillbillies.

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Then we were officially open, and you all kept coming, through the hiccups and bumps in the road! You were understanding the days our card readers wouldn’t work and the fact you couldn’t call the Market for the first few months because our lines weren’t operational. You waited patiently for WiFi and gift cards and there are no words to express how thankful we are for your support and patience through those bumps. Our staffers, who are the face of this business, have been welcoming and tried to find answers to questions we had never been asked before. We saw our first craft festival (even though it poured rain!) and celebrated Veterans Day with over 200 of you. We hosted 14 company Christmas banquets and still a few more to come in January 2017.  The end of the year was highlighted with our first wedding in the Granary, which couldn’t have been a more joyous occasion with a couple whose love and family completely outshined the beauty of the space!

Tomorrow we’ll unveil our first collaboration beer that our bar manager David has worked on with Three Notch’d Brewery and we can’t wait to see what you think! Our goal is to continue to grow and look forward to the future year.  2017 is sure to hold a number of surprises for this new adventure but we’re certainly glad to call this community and Weyers Cave home.  We know with your support, plenty of prayers, and the hard-working employees we have at the Market, next year will be even better! 

The Granary at Valley Pike

If you’ve been to the Market, you have most likely seen our wonderful selection of Virginia food products, but did you know we also have an event venue downstairs?  Our downstairs space is called “The Granary” and it’s definitely one of a kind… just like our Market! The Granary is a remarkable setting for weddings, private parties, and business events.

Photo by: Sidney Leigh Photography

Photo by: Sidney Leigh Photography

The Granary originally held livestock many years ago in this barn’s life, but we’ve now cleaned and polished the place to shine as an exclusive event venue! With beautiful 12-foot exposed wood-beam ceilings and unique concrete floors, the Granary stands out from the crowd.  The entire space allows patrons to step back in time while still enjoying the modern conveniences of beautiful lighting, AC and/or heating, a sound system, and of course, brand new restrooms! 

Reservation of the space includes the use of our downstairs taproom and the outside patio.  Both areas add an original touch to any event. Our taproom can be structured to fit any type of budget.  Whether you are going for an open bar with an array of options or a set limit simply with your favorite type of beer and wine, we’ve got you covered! The outside is complete with lights, a sound system, fans and heaters underneath the deck, and a working stone fireplace. The patio has picturesque Shenandoah Valley views of rolling farmland, which will set a beautiful scene for any wedding or private event.

Photo by: Sidney Leigh Photography

Photo by: Sidney Leigh Photography

Photo by: Sidney Leigh Photography

Photo by: Sidney Leigh Photography

Photo by: Sidney Leigh Photography

Photo by: Sidney Leigh Photography

For our Granary brides, we also offer a space suited just for your special day! Our bridal suite and groom’s room give our special couples the perfect, serene getaway location during the chaos of the big day. The bridal party will be able to dress for the ceremony or take a break before the reception in these wedding-ready rooms. 

Photo by: Sidney Leigh Photography

Photo by: Sidney Leigh Photography

Photo by: Sidney Leigh Photography

Photo by: Sidney Leigh Photography

Reservation of the Granary includes 250 chairs and 30 round banquet tables.  We allow clients to use caterers of their choice but have the option to supplement their catering items with food products we serve in the Market, upon request. Although our Market promotes Virginia products, we can also obtain beer or wine produced outside the Commonwealth, if our Granary clients prefer, at the event. The Valley Pike Farm Market stays open during regular business hours but the deck space will be closed to the public during private events, so that the outdoor space is exclusively yours. Reservations can be made seven days a week.  Weekend reservations can be made by the day or the entire weekend. 

Photo by: Bessie Black Photography

Photo by: Bessie Black Photography

Photo by: Bessie Black Photography

Photo by: Bessie Black Photography

Photo by: Bessie Black Photography

Photo by: Bessie Black Photography

Photo by: Bessie Black Photography

Photo by: Bessie Black Photography

Questions about reservations?  Please contact Katie Yount. Want to check available dates? Click here.

Photo by: Bessie Black Photography

Photo by: Bessie Black Photography

In August we worked with some awesome partners to host a mock wedding shoot at our new venue.  Thank you to all of the partners we worked with to make the shoot come together. Photographs provided by Sidney Leigh Photography. Wedding Dress - Amanda's Touch. Rings - Christopher Williams . Cake - Heritage Bakery & Cafe. Invitation Suite - Simply Paper Co. Hair & Make-up - Taylor Gibson - Hi Tech Design. Decore - Karissa Coffey Rentals And a very special thank you to our bride and groom for the shoot who will be getting married here at the Granary in June! 

Local Love

Support The Community We Serve.  We would like that statement to ring true in every part of our business. From the products in our store to the employees that will greet you when you walk in the building.  Our barn isn't shipped from a large company, it's born and bred right here in the Shenandoah Valley (just in a different spot than it was in the 1800's). To make this old Virginia barn new again we had lots of help, lots of local help! We couldn't imagine anyone else caring for our old barn the way David & Ann do, but the local companies that helped us to bring Valley Pike Farm Market back to life sure proved us wrong. The Gardner's wish to thank and give credit to the following local companies and people that helped us bring the vision of Valley Pike Farm Market to life again. 

-Jody Hensley Technology
-Johnathan Bucher
-Lucas Coffee Co. - Troy Lucas
-Maple Lane Veterinary Clinic
-Mark Byerly Engineer
-May Supply
-MLB Welding - Mario L. Biotchie
-Murphy Fencing – Dale Murphy
-North River Roofing - Dale Wenger
-Old Dominion Lighting – Tom Dalton
-Rocking R Hardware
-Shank Wholesalers
-Shentel - James Funkhauser
-Shreckhise Landscape & Design
-Sidney Leigh Photography - Sidney Gardner
-Silver Lake Welding
-Star Heating & Cooling
-Steve Hilbert Electrical
-Stonebierker Inc. - Dennis Rhodes
-Superior Concrete - Keith
Mongold
-Trinity Turf -  Kurt Fellenstien
-Ultimate Concrete - Cam Gardner
-United Bank
-West Valley Concrete - Gary Lam
-Wildlife Construction - Allen Lam
-Willow Run Lumber - Justin Schwartzel
-Womack Electrical

-Augusta Aluminum Gutterworks
-Bev Randolph
-Bitnbydesigns LLC - Todd Gardner
-Blossman Propane
-Brunk & Hylton Engineering
-Burgess Plumbing
-Cattleman's Supply -Jeff Slaven
-Coebot – Tucker Gardner
-Crutchfield - Eugene Chan
-Custom Kitchens - Bob Alger
-Davenport Insulation - Greg Sigmon
Donnie Knott
-Drafting Services - Gary Harpine
-Dwight Miller Masonry
-Eagle Carpet
-Ed Keifer Engineer
-Eddie Edwards Signs
-Eddie’s Excavating
-Farm Credit Virginia
-First Bank & Trust
-Greg Randolph, LLC. - Jesse Atkins & Patrick Conley
-Ground Effects - Patrick & Preston Gardner and Brett Minnick
-Harrisonburg Refrigeration
-Heartland Construction  - Mike Hart
-Hawk Security
 

Introducing the Valley Pike Farm Market

A vintage barn is being brought back to life as the new Valley Pike Farm Market located along Route 11. This innovative space, due to open in August will be home to several different local shops and includes festival and event space.

“We are truly excited for the public to experience this beautiful barn’s second life,” states the Market’s owner David Gardner.  The Valley Pike Farm Market is the vision of Dr. Gardner.  As a local business owner (Maple Lane Veterinary Clinic), David knows the importance of not only supporting our community, but also keeping our area's history alive. Gardner goes on to say that, “This has been an unique opportunity to breathe new life into a historic Valley treasure and also to provide locals with access to local food and a community space to gather.”

“Augusta County entrepreneurship is strong,” said Carolyn Bragg, Chair of the Augusta County Board of Supervisors. “The Market is a great vision, and we’re looking forward to enjoying the fruits of Dr. Gardner’s labor.” The Market will feature a deli counter with products from Boars Head meats and cheeses. The Rumor Mill Coffee Co., our very own coffee shop will offer locally ground beans from Lucas Roasting, and will focus on local bread and pastries. Virginia craft beers, cider, and wines will be served as well as Virginia’s Finest brand.  This 13,500 square foot repurposed barn will also be home to The Granary, an event venue for community festivals and private gatherings.

Adjacent to the Market, there are future plans to include a food truck court and an open-air vegetable stand.  Valley Pike BBQ is currently serving food alongside the in-construction Market, and there are plans to partner with additional food trucks going forward.

“Dr. Gardner’s project is an amazing combination of two popular movements – local food and repurposed buildings,” said Dr. Marshall Pattie, Augusta County Board of Supervisors who represents the North River District where Valley Pike Farm Market is located.  “Weyers Cave will be lucky to be home to the Market.”