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Chippokes Plantation State Park

Chippokes Plantation offers modern recreational activities and a glimpse of life in a bygone era. Visitors may tour the historic area with its antebellum mansion and outbuildings, and stroll through formal gardens.
A campground and four overnight cottages allow visitors to stay on the historic grounds. The park has an Olympic-sized swimming pool and a visitor center with a gift shop. Other opportunities include biking, hiking, horseback riding, fishing and boating,
or canoeing.

In 1854, Albert Carroll Jones built the present Chippokes Mansion that overlooks the historic James River. This Italianate structure was built of brick, had stucco applied, and was painted on its river facade. At one time, Chippokes had one of the few legal distilleries in the Commonwealth. Local legend conjectures that the mansion survived the Civil War because Albert Jones sold his brandies to both sides during the war.
The Plantation changed owners many times before it was bought in 1918 by Thornton Jeffress of Rochester, New York and V.W. Stewart of Wilson, North Carolina. Mr. and Mrs. Stewart moved to Chippokes and expended great effort to restore the property, and compiled a detailed history of the plantation. Upon her husband's death in 1967, Mrs. Stewart, in order to preserve the plantation in its entirety, donated Chippokes Plantation to the Commonwealth as a memorial to her husband. Mrs. Stewart hoped that the plantation would become a park and would be preserved as a working farm to interpret day-to-day farm life through the centuries.
Chippokes Plantation is one of the oldest continually farmed plantations in the country, retaining its original 1619 boundaries of 1,683 acres. The Farm and Forestry Museum at the park offers displays of antique farm and forestry equipment, tools, and housewares.

December Events/Interpretive Programs:

Saturday, December 6 - Southern Heritage Deer Hunt. PARK CLOSED TO THE PUBLIC.
Friday, December 12 - Staff/Volunteer Christmas Party. Maintenance Shop. 12 noon.
Saturday, December 13 - James River Hike. Meet at the Jones-Stewart Mansion parking lot. 1 - 2:30pm.
Saturday, December 20 - River House Tour. Meet at the River House. 1-1:30pm.
Friday-Monday, December 26-29 - Jones-Stewart Mansion Tours. Meet at the back door of the Mansion. 12-4pm.
Saturday, December 27 - Wood Splitting Demo. Meet at the Brick Kitchen. 1-3pm.

January Events/Interpretive Programs:

Thursday, January 1 - First Day Hikes. See information below.
Thursday, January 1 - Jones-Stewart Mansion Tour. 12-4pm.

News and Opportunities:

Southern Heritage Deer Hunt. Saturday, December 6. This year marks the 20th anniversary of the Southern Heritage Deer Hunt at Chippokes. Hunters register ahead and are given a unique hunting experience, which includes three catered meals, skilled dogs, transportation to and from the stands, and a butchering service. Note that the park is closed to the public on this day.

Staff/Volunteer Christmas Party. You are invited to the Staff/Volunteer Christmas Party on Friday, December 12, at 12:00 noon, at the Park's Maintenance Shop. The Friends of Chippokes are providing the meat. Please bring a side dish or dessert. All those who want to participate in the gift swap, please bring a gift costing no more than $10. Please RSVP to Kathryn Lane by Friday, December 5.

Jones-Stewart Mansion Holiday Dates. The Jones-Stewart Mansion will be open Friday, December 26 through Monday, December 29, offering a pleasant diversion for you, your family, and any out-of-town guests. You will find the Mansion beautifully decorated for Christmas. The Mansion will also be open on Thursday, January 1, providing a perfect follow-up activity for one of our First Day Hikes (see below). Please note that the Mansion hours are 12-4pm on all of these holiday dates.

First Day Hikes. First Day Hikes is a nationwide event featuring hundreds of hiking programs aimed at kicking off 2015 in the serenity of nature. Chippokes Plantation State Park has two programs to help you jumpstart your new year:

James River Hike. 9-11:30am. Join a park interpreter for a leisurely stroll through forests and fields. The hike will take place on the James River Trail and will feature opportunities to witness wildlife and their habitats. It is recommended that participants wear comfortable shoes and warm clothing. There will be a break halfway through the hike, so feel free to bring something to eat. Meet at the Jones-Stewart parking lot.

Flying Feathered Friends. 11am-12pm. Grab your binoculars or cameras and join the flock as we search for birds. Hiking through a variety of Chippokes natural habitats, we will experience how different birds use the park as a breeding, wintering, and permanent habitat. Some binoculars will be provided. It is recommended that participants wear comfortable shoes and warm clothing. Meet in front of the Visitor Center.

Merry Christmas and Happy New Year from the staff at Chippokes Plantation State Park!

Kathryn Lane
Volunteer Coordinator
Chippokes Plantation State Park
757-294-3625
kathryn.lane@dcr.virginia.gov

The facilities are open seasonally and the grounds are open daily.

695 Chippokes Park Road (Rt. 634)
Surry, VA 23883
757-294-3625
http://www.dcr.virginia.gov/state_parks/chi.shtml

Seeour Map page for location

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