Rockfish Valley Foundation Dedicates Natural History Center – Opens Saturday!

©™2012 Nelson County Life : Photos By Tommy Stafford : (L to R) Dr. Joe B Keiper Exec Dir of VA Museum of Natural History, Peter Agelasto RVF Founder, 4 year old Orlena Harrell (Laney) & 8 year old Ashleigh Breighner (Buggy) snap a ceremonial sycamore branch to officially dedicate the opening of the RVF Natural History Center Thursday evening June 13, 2012.

Nellysford / Spruce Creek
Nelson County, VA

Surrounded by family, friends, volunteers, and dignitaries, the Rockfish Valley Foundation officially dedicated the new Natural History Center Thursday evening just south of Nellysford. It’s located in what was originally the Wintergreen Country Store, but most recently remembered as Spruce Creek Gallery for over a decade.

Writer / Photographer Marcie Gates first told you about the coming museum in the current June issue of NCL on page 22. Click above to read that story and learn more about the museum.

A crowd of 75 or so were on hand Thursday evening for the special dedication ceremony.
Immediately following the dedication everyone moved inside to look it over and for an even larger treat. Above NCL Publisher Yvette Stafford samples some of the Bold Rock Hard Cider poured by John Washburn, founder of the cidery. Their signature Virginia Apple hard cider was officially released immediately after the museum dedication. John tells us it will be hitting area shelves across the state over the coming weeks!
A wide variety of native Rockfish Valley food was on hand for everyone inside. Including bear, deer, and trout just to name a few!
Linda Heuer of Nellysford provided beautiful piano music during the Thursday evening dedication and event.
Lynn & Billy Coffey of Love, VA (yes, that Lynn that writes monthly in NCL) check out a unique hand crafted boat on display in the museum.
Photo Courtesy of Ann Strober RVF Photographer : A man checks out one of the lifelike animal displays on hand in the museum.
Photo Courtesy of Ann Strober RVF Photographer: David K Whitehurst, Director of Wildlife Resources for the State of VA, was just one of the several dignitaries on hand that spoke to the crowd during the ceremony.

The Natural History Center will open to the public beginning at 10AM to 4PM Saturday – June 16th. The museum will be open every Saturday & Sunday after that from 10A to 4P and by appointment. Eventually the center plans to increase the hours it is open.

Check it out and congrats !


  1. Tommy thanks for such a wonderful photo visit to the dedication ceremony. This weekend should be a great opening with some exotic live creatures tomorrow and of course cake and lemonade. Next week end there are programs for children both days.


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