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Three Centuries of Gracious Living: Country Manors and Town Homes

Program Number: 7301RJ
Start and End Dates:
5/27/2013 - 6/1/2013;
Duration: 5 nights
Location: Williamsburg, Virginia
Price starting at: $788.00 - Price may vary based on date, departure city
Program Type: Homes & Gardens
Meals: 15; 5 Breakfasts, 5 Lunches, 5 Dinners    
Meal Options: Vegetarian; Kosher; Gluten Free    

Just outside Williamsburg, historic plantations and mansions grace the Virginia countryside. Seats of power and wealth for three centuries, these architecturally fascinating structures range from magnificent Georgian manors on the James River to a modest streamside farmhouse. Explore this world of the landed gentry whose complex lifestyles mirrored aristocratic English society. And for a true taste of the times, enjoy strolling musicians during lunch at a Colonial tavern.




Highlights

• Explore 17th-century Bacon's Castle, learning how one of America’s oldest brick homes was captured by partisans during Bacon's Rebellion in 1676.
• Investigate an urban plantation at the Wythe House complex in Williamsburg, a setting that in many ways mirrors the great rural estates.
• Wonder at the luxury displayed in two of the great James River Plantations — Shirley and Berkeley — occupied over several centuries by some of the First Families of Virginia.



Activity Particulars

Walking up to two miles daily.




Date Specific Information

5-27-2013

Enjoy the latest in hearing technology — listening devices — on this date.



Coordinated by Road Scholar.




Williamsburg (Virginia)

One of America’s first planned cities, this one-time capital of the New World was laid out in 1699, and today, the historic community serves as a well-preserved center of American Colonial history, from nearby Jamestown to impeccably restored buildings.



Accommodations
Modern hotel near historic area, indoor pool and fitness center.
Meals and Lodgings
   Clarion Hotel Historic District
  Williamsburg 5 nights
 Clarion Hotel Historic District
Type: Hotel
  Description: The Clarion Hotel Historic District features 143 well-appointed guest rooms. On-site recreational offerings include a fitness center, an indoor heated pool with whirlpool and a game room. The hotel also offers great food and entertainment at the Bourbon Street Restaurant, which serves breakfast, lunch and dinner. Walking distance to Colonial Williamsburg and two miles to Busch Gardens.
  Contact info: 351 York Street
Williamsburg, VA 23185 USA
phone: 757-229-4100
web: www.clarionwilliamsburg.com
  Room amenities: Room Amenities: Free high speed Internet access in all guest rooms and public spaces; dual-line speaker telephone; iron/ironing board; in-room movies; coffee maker; hair dryer; in room safes at no additional charge
  Facility amenities: Facilities: 24-Hour Front Desk, business center, guest laundromat, dry cleaning service, fitness facility, game room, lounge, indoor whirlpool and indoor pool.
  Smoking allowed: No
  Elevators available: Yes
  Additional nights prior: $69p+ ($89+ sp. event wknds) Make arrangements directly with the hotel. Limited rooms available at the discounted Road Scholar rate. Rate not available if hotel is sold out. Reservations require credit card guarantee. Cancellation must be made 48 hrs prior to arrival to avoid charge.
  Check in time: 4:00 PM
  Additional nights after: $69p+ ($89+ sp. event wknds) Make arrangements directly with the hotel. Limited rooms available at the discounted Road Scholar rate. Rate not available if hotel is sold out. Reservations require credit card guarantee. Cancellation must be made 48 hrs prior to arrival to avoid charge.
  Check out time: 11:00 AM


Travel Details
  Start of Program:
4:00pm Program registration begins at hotel/ 4:00pm Check into your room/ 5:15pm Start of Prgm. You will be staying at Clarion Hotel Historic District that night.
  End of Program:
Program ends at 11:30am with box lunch available after class. You will be staying at Clarion Hotel Historic District the night before.
  Required documents:
The Road Scholar Health & Safety Form is required. none
  Parking availability:
Free parking at hotel.
Transportation
To Start of Program
  Location:  Williamsburg
  Nearest city or town:  Richmond
  Nearest highway: Interstate 64
  Nearest airport:  Williamsburg/Newport New Airport (30 minutes)
  From End of Program
  Location: Williamsburg
    (Additional transportation information same as above)
Travel Details
 

Williamsburg

 

From Train Station

 
 

Service:

 

Taxi
Triangle Taxi
phone: 757-564-6969
Advanced Reservations Required

 

Per Person/One Way:

 

varies depending on gas prices; call for rates
Prices are subject to change.

 

Travel Time:

 

10 minutes 

 

Distance:

 

2 miles

   

Williamsburg is served by both Amtrak and Greyhound, which both arrive at the same Transportation Center. For train information, call 1-800-872-7245 or go to www.amtrak.com. Additional taxis are available to transport to hotel; all rates are the same.

 

Williamsburg

 

From Bus Terminal

 
 

Service:

 

Taxi
Triangle Taxi
phone: 757-564-6969
Advanced Reservations Required

 

Per Person/One Way:

 

varies depending on gas prices; call for rates
Prices are subject to change.

 

Travel Time:

 

10 minutes 

 

Distance:

 

2 miles

   

Williamsburg is served by both Amtrak and Greyhound, which both arrive at the same Transportation Center. For bus information, call 1-800-231-2222 or go to www.greyhound.com. Additional taxis are available to transport to hotel; all rates are the same.

 

Norfolk

 

From Airport

 
 

Service:

 

Commercial Van/Shuttle
Oleta Coach Lines
phone: 757-253-1008
Advanced Reservations Required

 

Per Person/One Way:

 

varies, depending on current gas prices; call for rates
Prices are subject to change.

 

Travel Time:

 

1-1.5 hours, depending on traffic 

 

Distance:

 

about 45 miles

   

Travel from this airport to the hotel (and back after the program) includes passage through the Hampton Roads Bridge Tunnel which is frequently congested, causing long delays. The trip may well cost in excess of $100 per person one way. We recommend using Richmond or Newport News Airports if possible. Alternate transportation includes Marrow Transit (757-564-5466) or Cary Airport Connection (757-963-0433).

 

Richmond

 

From Airport

 
 

Service:

 

Commercial Van/Shuttle
Groome Transportation
phone: 800-552-7911

 

Per Person/One Way:

 

varies, depending on current gas prices; call for rates
Prices are subject to change.

 

Travel Time:

 

about an hour depending on traffic 

 

Distance:

 

about 45-50 miles

   

Alternate transportation from/to airport available through Oleta Coach Lines van service (757-253-1008) or Marrow Transit, a private car service,757-564-5466. Call for rates and reservations.

 

Newport News

 

From Airport

 
 

Service:

 

Commercial Van/Shuttle
Oleta Coach Lines
phone: 757-253-1008
Advanced Reservations Required

 

Per Person/One Way:

 

varies depending on gas prices; call for rates
Prices are subject to change.

 

Travel Time:

 

20-30 minutes 

 

Distance:

 

about 20

   

Although this is a smaller airport than Richmond or Norfolk, it is the closest and most convenient in terms of getting from the airport to the hotel and back. Besides the van service listed above, several taxi companies are also available in the ground transportation area of the airport. Alternatives include Marrow Transit (757-564-5466) or Triangle Taxi (757-564-6969). When using Oleta or Marrow, be sure to mention that you are a Road Scholar participant.

 
Driving Directions
  From Hampton Roads Travel WEST on Interstate I-64 toward Williamsburg. Just EAST of Williamsburg, leave I-64 on exit #242A/Route 199 toward Jamestown. Drive 1.3 miles; take exit for Route 60. At stop sign at bottom of ramp, turn left onto Route 60 WEST. The hotel is a little over 1 mile on the right, shortly after the road narrows to two lanes. If you get to the stoplight, you have gone too far.
  From Richmond and I-95 Travel EAST on Interstate I-64 toward Williamsburg. Just EAST of Williamsburg, leave I-64 on exit #242-A/Route 199 toward Jamestown. Drive 1.3 miles; take exit for Route 60. At stop sign at bottom of ramp, turn left onto Route 60 WEST. The hotel is a little over 1 mile on the right, shortly after the road narrows to two lanes. If you get to the stoplight, you have gone too far.
  From Southside Virginia via the Jamestown Ferry Cross the James River on the Jamestown Ferry/Route 31. Follow Route 31/Jamestown Road toward Williamsburg for about 4.2 miles. Turn right at the traffic light onto Route 199. Follow Route 199 about 3.8 miles and take exit for Route 60. At stop sign at bottom of ramp turn left onto 60 WEST. The hotel is a little over a mile on the right, just after the road narrows to two lanes. If you get to the stoplight, you've gone too far.
The prices listed for commercial services and facilities that are not included in the program cost, such as airport shuttles or extra nights lodging, are subject to change without notice. Since Road Scholar cannot guarantee the accuracy of these prices, we strongly suggest contacting the companies directly for the most up-to-date information.


Daily Schedule

Day 1: Introduction to Three Centuries of Plantation Living
(Monday, May 27)
   
 Afternoon: Arrival Check in Registration Welcome Class: "Virginia Through the Centuries: Urban vs. Rural" A general overview of the societies that developed in the countryside and in the towns and cities of Virginia from its colonial beginnings up through the chaotic years of the American Civil War.
 Dinner: Enjoy a good, traditional style dinner with a Southern accent, served buffet style in a private dining area. All dinners for the week will be in this venue.
 Evening: Road Scholar Introductions Program Overview
   
Accommodations: Clarion Hotel Historic District
Meals Included: Dinner

Day 2: Visits to 17th century Bacon's Castle and the 400 year old farm at Chippokes Plantation
(Tuesday, May 28)

Note: Both of these visits include walking on the grounds of the plantations. The second floor of Bacon's Castle is accessible only by stairs, and there are also steps at Chippokes. Those not able to walk long distances or climb stairs will be able to rest on numerous benches and visit ground level displays that will provide some information about the sites.



   
 Breakfast: Start the day with a generous buffet breakfast in our private dining area.
 Morning: "Evolution of Plantation Life: The Revolution to the Civil War" Trace the changes that take place during the Antebellum Period as different crops are planted, farming methods are refined, and slaves continue to toil in the fields. Field Trip: "Bacon's Castle" This National Historical Landmark is one of the oldest brick houses still standing in English North America. Exhibits many unique architectural features and has extensive gardens. It was occupied by partisans during Bacon's' Rebellion in 1676.
 Lunch: Enjoy a boxed lunch in the picnic area at Chippokes Plantation. The meal will include a sandwich, chips, fruit, cookie, and drink.
 Afternoon: Field Trip: "Chippokes Plantation, a Virginia State Park" The site has been farmed for over three centuries and includes early buildings and the manor house, along with an antique farm implements museum, all of which highlight the evolution of agricultural life during its three centuries.
 Dinner: Dinner will again be at the hotel in our private dining area.
 Evening: Performance: "Life after Bacon's Rebellion" A lady of the time describes the trials, tribulations, and triumphs of life in the turbulent years of the late seventeenth century. She shares her stories and willingly answers questions from her audience.
   
Accommodations: Clarion Hotel Historic District
Meals Included: Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner

Day 3: Gardens and an Urban Plantation in Colonial Williamsburg; Lunch at a colonial tavern
(Wednesday, May 29)

Note: The walk through Colonial Williamsburg is about a mile and a half on pebble, brick, and shell paths with few places to rest. Steps must be negotiated to explore the Wythe House.



   
 Breakfast: Breakfast at your leisure in our private dining area.
 Morning: Class: "Evolution of the Governor's Palace Gardens" A Colonial Williamsburg gardener shares his knowledge of the formal gardens, always intriguing Maze, and kitchen gardens that share the grounds around the reconstructed Royal Governor's Palace in the Restored Area. Field Trip: "Historic Garden Walk through Colonial Williamsburg". Continue your study of the gardens of the colonial era as your guide takes you on a walking tour of formal and informal gardens from the nurseries to the Governor's Palace. Field Trip: "George Wythe House" Explore the environs of an urban plantation at the beautifully restored Wythe House on Palace Green. The site includes not only the main house but also many of the outbuildings essential to the smooth running of the household so that a full picture of colonial town life can be seen.
 Lunch: Enjoy the ambiance of a Colonial Tavern as you are entertained by strolling musicians and local personalities from the past. Taste southern comfort food in the charm of Shields Tavern, a reconstructed building with a history all its own. In the 18th century, public houses were gathering places for residents and travelers. Partake of a dining experience similar to one enjoyed by patriots like George Washington, Thomas Jefferson, and Patrick Henry.
 Afternoon: Field Trip : "Colonial Williamsburg" Continue your exploration of the Restored Area with a guided walk down mile-long Duke of Gloucester Street that provides an overview of the homes, stores, and public buildings. The information gained on this field trip can be used to select sites to explore in more depth in your free time on Day Four. Time has also been built into the afternoon so that if you would like to remain in the Restored Area after the guided walk, you can begin your in-depth exploration this afternoon.
 Dinner: Dinner will again be at the hotel in our private dining area.
 Evening: Performance: "Civil War Era Music and Instruments" Enjoy the talents of a costumed musician as he plays period style instruments like the banjo and sings some of the songs that the troops on both sides of the conflict would have known. Learn about the instruments and the social context in which the music evolved.
   
Accommodations: Clarion Hotel Historic District
Meals Included: Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner

Day 4: Presentations on Architecture and Slavery; A moving visit from a newly freed slave
(Thursday, May 30)

Note: This can be a quiet day to catch your breath or you can venture out on your free afternoon to revisit Colonial Williamsburg or other area sites.



   
 Breakfast: Breakfast at your leisure in our private dining area.
 Morning: Class: "Plantation Architecture" Learn about the predominant styles of the great James River plantations from their humble beginnings to the "Georgian Palaces" that graced the expansive farms that spread along both banks of the river from colonial times to the nineteenth century. Class: "A Brief History of Slavery" A study of the institution from its beginnings in 1619 as a form of indentured servitude through its gradual codification into the laws of the Virginia colony until it became part of the very fabric of society in the eighteenth and nineteenth centuries. A full understanding of the first 250 years of American history cannot be gained without a consideration of the role and status of the African American slaves who made up a substantial part of the population.
 Lunch: A lighter mid-day fare will be served in our private dining area.
 Afternoon: Free Afternoon: Use your Colonial Williamsburg ticket to continue your exploration of the Restored Area or Visitors Center, or investigate some of the other historical sites in the area on your own.
 Dinner: Dinner will again be at the hotel in our private dining area.
 Evening: Performance: "The Contraband Story and the African American Experience" Enter the world of the African American slave after the battles had been waged and the soldiers returned home. A wonderfully talented interpreter will tell you of the incredible struggle of slaves to gain freedom and describe what the war meant to them. Share with her the poignant story of her search for her lost daughter and the results of the heart-wrenching reunion.
   
Accommodations: Clarion Hotel Historic District
Meals Included: Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner

Day 5: Visits to Berkeley and Shirley Plantations; Musical entertainment; Another visitor from the past
(Friday, May 31)

Note: Both of the houses visited today can only be accessed by going up and down flights of stairs. Both have beautiful grounds that can be explored as much or as little as you choose following brick, pebble, and shell paths.



   
 Breakfast: Breakfast at your leisure in our private dining area.
 Morning: Performance: "Rare Colonial Instruments" Enjoy the talents of a costumed colonial musician as he plays and describes instruments of the period from the expected to the delightfully unusual. Class: "Plantation Cooking" Learn about the ingredients, methods and theories of colonial cooking as you assist in the preparation of a simple but delicious dessert from the time period.
 Lunch: A lighter mid-day fare will be served in our private dining area.
 Afternoon: Field Trip: "The Great James River Plantations" Explore Berkeley and Shirley Plantations, homes with colorful histories, occupied over several centuries by some of the First Families of Virginia and their descendants. You will be able to tour both the grounds bursting with spring growth and the mansions that give a glimpse of the great James River plantation lifestyle at its height.
 Dinner: Dinner will again be at the hotel in our private dining area.
 Evening: Performance: "A Loving, Dutiful Wife" Discover what life was like on the home front during the Civil War as you hear the story of a local lady caught between the warring armies. Learn about how she made due as soldiers from both sides passed by her farm and what happened to her extended family, fighting on both sides of the conflict.
   
Accommodations: Clarion Hotel Historic District
Meals Included: Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner

Day 6: Visits to Endview Plantation, a modest Revolutionary era farmhouse, and Lee Hall Mansion, an impressive Antebellum home
(Saturday, June 1)

Note: Both of the houses today have access to their first floors by means of lifts. The only access to the second floors is by steps. The museum in the basement of Endview can only be accessed by stairs, but the one at Lee Hall has a ramp. The grounds of both can be explored as little or as much as you choose.



   
 Breakfast: Breakfast at your leisure in our private dining area.
 Morning: Field Trip: "Antebellum Homes" Tour Endview Plantation, a Colonial period farm that will provide an interesting contrast to the great plantations. It was also site of Civil War encampments and is interpreted as it was during that war. Then travel to nearby Lee Hall Mansion, an elegant 1850's manor with unique architectural features, home to an agricultural innovator and headquarters for Confederate generals in 1862.
 Lunch: Pick up a box lunch with sandwich, fruit, chips, cookie, and beverage before heading home.
   
Meals Included: Breakfast, Lunch

Free Time Opportunities
 
  Williamsburg Tidewater Area: Williamsburg/Jamestown and Yorktown
Our Road Scholar programs are filled with fascinating and informative classes, field trips, excursions and extracurricular activities. The day-by-day itinerary details what you will see and do. The schedule includes a free afternoon during the week to pursue your own interests; otherwise, there will be only a few hours of unstructured time per day. Because the Road Scholar schedule is so full, there will be little opportunity for independent exploration of other sites in the Williamsburg area. We suggest you consider taking time after the program concludes to enjoy local attractions. Visit our web page with links, sample schedules, hotels, web pages, Colonial Williamsburg and more. For additional information, visit www.wm.edu/Elderhostel
Important information about your itinerary: Every effort has been made to ensure the accuracy and completeness of the information featured on this website. Itineraries are based on our best information at this time. Circumstances beyond our control may require us to adjust itineraries or other details. We regret any inconvenience this may cause and appreciate your understanding. Information will be sent to you from your Program Provider approximately three weeks prior to the program start date. The prices listed for commercial services and facilities that are not included in the program cost, such as airport shuttles or extra nights lodging, are subject to change without notice. Since Road Scholar cannot guarantee the accuracy of these prices, we strongly suggest contacting the companies directly for the most up-to-date information.


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