Over the course of my lifetime, I like to think that I have grown up a lot in certain places. As for my children, they are mainly raised in a very small town called Independence. There is about 900 or so people here per year and it is very old school for the most part. I mean we have internet and updated things, but this little town is mainly known for its historical value. For this article I am collaborating with my older teen who gave me not only inspiration but had some great memories of growing up in Independence, VA to add as well which gives fresh eyes on the situation.
So lets have some fun shall we?
10. Fishing in a pond.
Not just any pond, but one right next door to a rock quarry. It was a man-made pond and originally stocked with fish. However, over the years, it was overgrown and no one fished in it. Well my family found it and we parked off the road a ways and walked into the thickest part of the mostly forgotten about path. Now looking back on it, this was also probably extremely dangerous because it’s a very sparse part of the outer town filled with wild things, animals etc. Here we are just poles and some bait, we did not even keep the fish. We just threw them back and had a really cool, living on the edge kind of day.
9. The only grocery store in town.
Shopping days are always memorable because of the older store and thinner crowd. There is always news or drama afoot while you are trying to find fresher foods. A majority of the newer cut meats are not even super fresh, along with suspicious fresh vegetables.
8. The local library.
They have a summer reading program and they have had it for years. It goes in tiers of age groups and most people win a prize regardless. All of the youth get a huge pizza party held at the park. My whole family really enjoys it.
7. Local church functions.
We have more churches than people in the town and they seem to be everywhere. There is a church for everybody and I know some families that attend more than one. Memories can be made and one of my favorites is watching my kids take part in the play or helping out with donations, food etc.
6. Meeting friendly people.
When I first arrived in the town, it was so different, laid back, and super old country. There is not a whole lot of going on. I quickly learned that the people for the most part were awesome. Some fun memories are spending time with them.
I can still hear the cows mooing as 40 or so had a home really close to my home. While it is super fun to recount the times we spent watching them, I can remember the amount of flies and the smell. Believe me not everything about cows are adorable. The farmer would come at 7:30 a.m. to feed them and the stampede of noise and cow craziness would take place.
4. The scenery.
The landscape and overall beauty of the mountains is beyond great for memories. You can have so much fun hiking or trying new things in the great wide open outdoors.
3. Local food.
The town has about 6 options of places you can actually eat out at and they are for the most part really good. I remember when the first Mexican restaurant opened and it was super. Over time, people tried to start new places and they just did not last. So you would have to be a certain age to remember the better places.
2. The 100 plus year old trees.
One of my favorite times is hanging out by the big hollow trees with my kids. I know it sounds boring to some people and yes the bugs and ticks etc are not super pleasant. I am talking about memories though. I think it is really something that would make you want to come through my neck of the woods and make memories of your own.
1. The quiet of a cool country night or a farmers market.
You get crickets and frogs. Night noises from critters and rustling of leaves. Fall is the best time to make memories here when the leaves are changing and the temperature is just right. They say Virginia is for lovers, but it is also for families and there is a place in town where they hold the local farmers market. It is so nice to see 14 or so local farmers as well as artisans come out and sell along with teaching the kids all about farming etc.
Of course over the years many memories take place, but these are off the top of my head favorites with the help of my family.