Fredericksburg Parent

July 2019

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www.FredericksburgParent.NET 43 Is your daughter ready for BUSINESS? Play, Plan & Pitch at A uniquely fun and empowering experience for future female business leaders ages 7-16. SUMMER CAMP REGISTRATION Welcome to Part 2 of FredParent's 90 Days of Fun series. As you saw in June, the intrepid Fredericksburg Parent staff is doing the hard work of summer fun research for our readers. Last month, editor Chris Jones experienced the Gaylord at National Harbor with his young children. This month, publisher Leigh Anne Van Doren reports on taking her teens to the historic and gracious Omni Homestead Resort in Hot Springs, VA. "The trip was a win the moment our car swept around a mountainous curve and the famous Homestead tower and complex appeared on the hill above us. After a short, stunned silence in the car, my 17-year-old said "mom, is THAT where we are going?" In one short moment, the Homestead took me from slightly annoying mom status, to major respect. Seeped with grandeur and tranquil architecture that dates to 1764, (George Washington visited the area) Omni Homestead and resort rejuvenates the mind, soul and body through its dining, family activities and spa. Just sitting in the lobby brought me more peace than the kids doing the dishes without me asking. It was an escape that soothed fractious teens, my stressed-out husband and gave me a memorable Mother's Day. After arriving Friday night, we picked up a s'mores kit from the front desk and joined other families around the firepit for a delicious, smoky, chocolate snack before bed. The 17-year-old, went for a trail ride, but the rest of us spent Saturday at the Spa. I had an ayurvedic massage, and then spent the rest of the day in the amazing Aqua Thermal Suite. I enjoyed an experimental tropical rain shower, the lavender herbal cocoon room, and best of all, the thermal heated lounge facing video screens of waterfalls. (my favorite). My husband had a Swedish massage and both daughters had haircuts and blowouts in the salon. Then on to a unique experience. We met at the oldest spa structure in the United States. The Homestead Serenity Garden is an adult-only pool. There we soaked in a 90-96-degree octagon-shaped pool. Fed by two springs, the pool is magnesium, potassium and calcium rich. The River Reflexology Walk with stones massaged the 15,000 nerves in our feet. We sat in the hot tub, swam in the pool and lunched in a private cabana. Finally, everyone put on nice clothes (Without nagging! The Homestead truly cast a spell.) and went down to an extraordinary dinner. We started with a straw- berry and blueberry salad with poppy seed dressing, moved on to Chateaubriand with local asparagus, king trumpet mushrooms, whipped potatoes, dande- lion greens and sauce Robert. I really thought nothing could top the tender Chateaubriand; but thank goodness I was wrong. I am completely sure that should I be allowed to enter the pearly gates, where I will be served Buttermilk Tart, comprised of Pate Sucree, Southern Buttermilk Custard and Strawberry Rhubarb Ice Cream. That piece of pie has now become my "happy place." Surrounded by many happy families celebrating Mother's Day, all four of us found the Homestead was a joy to experience. They have amazing babysitting programs for younger kids to enjoy and so much for tweens and teens, includ- ing archery, ziplining, golf, horses, games, hiking, biking and kayaking, along with a family-friendly lazy river. I give it five stars. The HOMESTEAD Impresses Teenagers WRITTEN BY LEIGH ANNE VAN DOREN Part 2 of 90 Days of Fun For a complete list of activities and restaurants go to

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