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Tuesday June 19, 2012

Tomorrow marks the first official day of summer for 2012 and there is no excuse to not get out and enjoy the many opportunities for summer vacation fun offered in Martinsville-Henry County, Virginia. We are located just forty-five minutes south of Roanoke, VA and forty-five minutes north of Greensboro, NC on US Highway 220 making us a convenient day trip location. For those taking a weekend vacation or longer we are with a day's drive of 60% of the US population!

Here are some suggestions for enjoying a great summer vacation or staycation in Martinsville-Henry County, where "You'll Love the Pace!"


Bowen's Creek Beach

1. Visit Philpott Lake

Nestled among the rolling foothills of Virginia's Blue Ridge, Philpott Lake is a scenic wonderland. The lake covers 3,000 acres with 100 miles of shoreline.

The lake has eight campgrounds, six beach areas, and nine boat launches. Visitors to Philpott should begin with a trip to the lake's scenic overlook and Visitor Center where they can learn how the hydro-electric dam and lake were constructed in 1951. 

More Resources: 

Video boat tour of Philpott Lake


Smith River Sports Complex

2. Spend a Day at the Park

Martinsville-Henry County offers numerous public parks featuring opportunities for picnicking, walking/hiking, basketball, tennis, fishing, skatingdisc golf and more.

14 of the area parks have playgrounds for children to enjoy. Be sure to check out the Evos playground at the Smith River Sports Complex for an out of this world bouncing, spinning and climbing experience that kids of all ages will enjoy. 

Overview of the Smith River Sports Complex

About the Evos Playground 




Ice Cream at Binding Time

3. Enjoy Cold Ice Cream on a Hot Day

Butter Pecan? Chocolate? Peach? Decisions, decisions! One thing is for sure, your taste buds will appreciate whichever flavor you select! Cold ice cream on a hot day is an important part of summer so stop by Binding Time Cafe' to enjoy a cone, bowl or shake outside on the patio with "Bud the Ice-cream-a-saurus."

Proudly serving Blue Bunny and Homestead Creamery ice Cream, the friendly staff at Binding Time will make sure you get your cold treat just the way you like it! Sprinkles anyone? After the snack, see how many decorated dinos like Bud you can find around MHC!

More Fun Ice Cream Stops: 

Fenderz Drive-In | Daily Grind 


Smith River

4. Reel 'Em In

Cast a line and enjoy a relaxing day of fishing. The Smith River offers 44.5 miles of opportunity for fly fishing and float fishing. You can fish for brown trout and stocked Rainbow upstream and smallmouth bass and redbreast are abundant downstream. Check out the 3,000-acre Philpott Lake for bass, walleye, crappie and catfish. In September 2011 a 67.5 pound catfish was caught in Philpott Lake. Can you break the record? 

Additional Resources:

Virginia Fishing Regulations 

Virginia Fishing Licenses 

Smith River Trout Unlimited 

"The Smith River: A River of Opportunity" 


Bike Barn

5. Generate Pedal Power

Biking is a fun summer pastime but it's not always feasible to travel with your bicycle. That's no problem in Martinsville-Henry County! Stop by the Bike Barn and show your photo ID to "Borrow a Bike and Bring it Back."

The service, located adjacent to the 4.5 mile long Dick & Willie Passage Rail Trail is open to the public seven days a week. Children ages 5 and up may ride and there is even a trailer offered to tow younger tykes.  

More Fun Trails for Hiking & Biking:

Richard P. Gravely, Jr. Nature Preserve

The Fieldale Trail 

Uptown Spur Trail




Tags: , Dick & Willie Passage Rail Trail, , Smith River Sports Complex, Smith River Trail System