Leslie Becker

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Posted by on in Uncategorized

Some area charities are certainly smiling a bit brighter this week thanks to a substantial donation from the Smith Mountain Lake Charity Home Tour. 

Proceeds from the tour totaled $155,305 and was distributed to eight Smith Mountain Lake charities.  This year’s payout will be recorded as one of the highest in tour history and has shown a substantial increase over the last two years.

The SML Charity Home Tour shines the spotlight on luxury homes in the Smith Mountain Lake area.  A ticket to the event allowed visitors to tour the homes inside and out, giving them the opportunity to see unique architectural layouts and innovative designs inspired by a breathtaking view of Smith Mountain Lake.

This year marked the 23rd year of the Tour.  Over 250 Smith Mountain Lake homes have been featured and the event has raised over 3.2 million for Smith Mountain Lake charities.

Planning for next year’s event, which will take place on the weekend of October 10th-12th, is already under way.  The Smith Mountain Lake Home Tour is held annual on Columbus Day weekend.

For more information on the SML Charity Home Tour, including way in which you can donate or volunteer, visit www.SMLCharityHomeTour.com.

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Posted by on in Uncategorized

With over 100 paintings in competition, the Smith Mountain Arts Council named the finalist in their 24th annual competition.

The event was held between October 25th and October 27th at Resurrection Catholic Church in Moneta.  Forty-eight artists and fourteen students showcased their works using a variety of mediums.

“Best of Show” was awarded to Whiney C. Brock for “Cherry Grove.”  The People’s Choice Award was given to Penny Simmons for her 3D model “Musical Bones.”

Awards were also given in the categories of Oil, Acrylic, Watercolor, Pastel and Mixed Media.  Students also competed in a separate category.

For a complete list of award winners and a gallery of participants, visit www.SmithMountainArtsCouncil.com.

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Posted by on in Uncategorized

Tour magnificent homes and marvel at stunning interior decor during the SML Charity Home Tour, Friday, October 11th thru Sunday, October 13th.


The tour features eight luxurious homes located within various destinations of Smith Mountain Lake.  Advance ticket prices are $20 with all proceeds benefitting charities that help the needy in the Smith Mountain Lake area.  Tickets may also be purchased the day of the event for $25.


All homes are accessible by land or by water.  For a complete listing of homes on the tour and to purchase tickets, visit www.SMLCharityHomeTour.com.

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Smith Mountain Lake has been a favored destination for wine enthusiasts for decades.  The popularity of the annual Smith Mountain Lake Wine Festival as well as the growing number of notable wineries has given tourists and locals alike the ability to sample an impressive selection of vino.


This year, Virginia Wine Lover Magazine awarded two area wineries with platinum, gold and silver awards: Chateau Morrisette and Hickory Hill Vineyards and Winery.


The panel of judges sampled entries from all across the Commonwealth in a double-blind flight.  Each entry was scored based on its own merits using the UC Davis 20 Point System.  This system assigns a number to each category including color, aroma and aftertaste.


Here is a list of the awards given to both wineries:



Chateau Morrisette, Cabernet Franc 2011



Chateau Morrisette, Chardonnay 2011/Frosty Dog White Blend 2011--Dessert/ Petit Verdot 2009

Hickory Hill Vineyards and Winery, Vidal Blanc, 2011/Cabernet Sauvignon 2009



Hickory Hill Vineyards and Winery, Cabernet Sauvignon 2010, Smith Mountain Lake Country Red--Red Blend, Cabernet Sauvignon, Cabernet Franc, Merlot/Smith Mountain Lake Sweet Red Sail--Red Blend, Chardonnay 2009 Estate, Smith Mountain Lake--White Blend, Vidal Blanc, Chardonnay, Chardonnay 2011 Estate, Cabernet Franc 2008, Chardonnay 2010 Estate


Both Chateau Morrisette and Hickory Hill Vineyards and Winery offer year-round events and make a great day trip for wine lovers.


For more information on visiting these fine wineries, visit Chateau Morrisette at www.thedogs.com and Hickory Hill Vineyards and Winery at www.smlwine.com.

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The Virginia Museum of Natural History is hosting "Reptile Day," Saturday, September 21st from 9am-4pm.  Visitors will have the chance to see many species of reptiles native to Virginia and North Carolina as well as reptiles from all around the world.


Patrons will have the chance to handle some of the reptiles on display including various species of snakes, lizards and turtles.  Educational presentations from reptile experts will explain the importance of reptiles in the environment.


Admission to the festival is $5 for adults, $4 for senior citizens and college students, $3 for children 3-18, and free for children under 3 and museum members.


For more information, visit www.VMNH.net.

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Show your love for the Smith Mountain Lake community by casting your ballot in the 13th Annual Best of Smith Mountain Lake Awards.


This competition, hosted by Laker Media, gives locals the chance to sing their praises for everything from favorite restaurant to favorite dog groomer in this highly anticipated annual competition.


With 23 new categories added, voters will have their hands full choosing the best that Smith Mountain Lake has to offer.


The Best of Smith Mountain Lake award winners each receive a plaque to be placed in their business.  Previous winners are noted on the ballot by an asterisk. 


To cast your vote for the Best of Smith Mountain Lake, visit www.smithmountainlake.com/best.

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Housing everything from groceries to fishing and hunting supplies, the Union Hall General Store is now open for business.


Opened by Becky Miller in the former Smith Mountain Building Supply location, the Union Hall General Store spans 27,000 square feet of shopping space.  Miller states that the goal of the store is to have a "little bit of everything."  Future plans for expansion include a beer barn, wine shop and a Southern States seed and supplement warehouse.


The Union Hall General Store is also home to a seasonal farmers' market and promises to have competitive prices on all items.

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Smith Mountain Lake enthusiasts know that SML has something for everyone.  With 500 miles of shoreline, guests flock to the area to enjoy water sports, shopping and unbelievable views of the state's second largest freshwater lake.

Those new to the area will definitely want to plan a day trip to Smith Mountain Lake State Park.  Spanning over 1,200 acres, the Smith Mountain Lake State Park offers a little bit of everything from which visitors can choose to enjoy!

A sandy beach welcomes guests and offers the perfect place to set up a picnic or catch some rays.  Visitors may also access boat rentals, a public boat dock and a universally accessible fishing pier.

The park is family friendly and offers playground and picnic areas, biking and hiking trails and numerous swimming areas that are safe and clean.

Smith Mountain Lake State Park also houses a visitor's center with information on many area attractions, an amphitheater and special programs are available throughout the year.


For more information on visiting the Smith Mountain Lake State Park call 540-297-6066.

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Guests and residents of Smith Mountain Lake have the entire community right at their fingertips.

"My Chamber App," brought to you by the Smith Mountain Lake Regional Chamber of Commerce, allows users to search for area chamber member businesses from their smartphone.

Users may search by category (i.e. "restaurants") or by the business name.  

Chamber members have the option to customize their listing within My Chamber App to include video, coupons and special incentives to lure patrons to their business.


The app is free and is available on the Apple App Store or via Google Play.

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Watch the sunset over Hickory Hill Vineyards while listening to live, acoustic music during Hickory Hill's "Lazy Days of Summer" edition of Sunset Saturday on Saturday, July 27 from 7p-10p.

Sunset Saturday is one of the most popular weekend events at Smith Mountain Lake.  The outdoor concert series highlights area musicians who perform on stage while patrons enjoy wine tastings.

Guests may bring their own picnic dinner, chairs and blankets.

The musical duo showcased on July 27th will be the popular duo Ken and Alli.


Entrance fees are $10 which includes a Hickory Hill wine glass.

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Posted by on in Smith Mountain Lake Fun

Another great weekend at SML. A big thank you to all who attended the Chamber sponsored Business Expo and the Rockin’ Brews and BBQ Festival!  More fun to come at SML!

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Posted by on in Uncategorized

It’s a double header weekend for the family at SML!  Come explore the SML Business Expo on Friday then return on Saturday for the Rockin’ Brews and BBQs Festival. Go to www.visitsmithmountainlake.com for more information.

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The Smith Mountain Lake Pistol Shooting Association is holding a Gun Raffle in support of 4-H Youth Programs for 2013. This year’s goal is to raise at least $2000 to cover the costs of 10 new .177 Caliber Air Pistols and associated accessories to provide for and support a new Pistol Shooting Program for 4-H kids in summer youth camp. The kids already shoot long gun air rifles and archery during the summer months and to also get them acclimated in handgun shooting and handgun safety.

The raffle tickets will go on sale next week at the following locations and are $5.00 per ticket: Blackwater TR Gun Store on Scruggs Road, Franklin Outdoors in Rocky Mount, The UPS Store in Westlake (Hardy) and the range officer booth at the 4-H shooting range.

Canik firearms are world-renowned for their accuracy, fit and finish and attention to detail and are made in the Salsimaz Armory in Turkey by hand and are very similar to the CZ75 line of handguns – but have a much higher rating. They have the best trigger system of all the designs and use very high quality components including MecGar magazines. The Shark “C” is one of the nicest pistols they produce in the lineup.

This year’s prize is really desirable with a very hard to find Canik 55 Shark “C” Chrome plated 9mm Concealed Carry Custom Pistol along with 500 rounds of PMC full metal jacket target ammo. The raffle drawing will take place on Sept. 3rd, 2013 at 6pm. (Winners need not be present).

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The Smith Mountain Lake Triathlon is the first open water swim triathlon in the western part of the state. This race has been around for a long time and is one of the most popular in the VTS. The water for the swim has historically been in the upper 60′s so wetsuits are recommended but are not mandatory. The event takes place on Saturday, May 4, 2013 at 9am at Smith Mountain Lake State park in Huddleston, VA. This event benefits Virginia Amateur Sports and The ALS Foundation.

The event has a 820.21 yard swim, 12.43 mile bike leg and a 3.11 mile run. The swim starts and finishes at the State Parks well groomed swimming beach. The bike is 20K and rolling throughout. The run course is all inside the park and is a nice flat to rolling out and back affair.

Expected Water Temperature is between 62-66F (62F in 2009, 67F in 2010, 68F in 2011, 68F in 2012). Exact temperature to be posted Friday morning before the event. Registration is open until Wednesday, May 1st at 9am or until all spots are filled. For more information or to register, visit www.setupevents.com.

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The annual Expo will be held on Friday, April 26th, in Downtown Moneta. The businesses will be set up on the southwest side of Rt. 122 and Rt. 608 - across from Mayberry Hills. Event hours are Noon to 5 p.m.

This year, over local 120 businesses will be represented in four large tents as well as outside exhibits, with representatives demonstrating products, answering questions and handing out literature, samples and promotional items. However, businesses are not permitted to sell items at the Expo.

Those attending the Expo can also register for door prizes, which are donated by area businesses and awarded throughout the day. A food tent will be set up with hot dogs, chips and drinks available for purchase. Courtesy golf carts will also be available to shuttle people from parking areas at Mayberry Hills and Bethlehem United Methodist Church.

Visit lake businesses or network your own company during the 10th Annual SML Business Expo. This is a great way to see a cross section of lake businesses all in one place! For more information call Lauren Parcetich at 540-721-1203 or go online to www.visitsmithmountainlake.com.

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Start the spring season with SMLRCC's annual event - Rockin' Brews & BBQ's at Smith Mountain Lake, a fun, family event with live music, several BBQ vendors and food vendors from North Carolina to Downtown Moneta. Event activities will include an inflatable play area for children and much more!

This year’s event takes place on the southwest side of Rt. 122 and Rt. 608 - across from Mayberry Hills in Downtown Moneta, VA on Saturday, April 27th, Noon to 6pm.

Admission is $5 and kids 12 and under get in free. Front gate admission includes tickets for food, a beverage and kid’s activities. Please note that no coolers are allowed.

Come enjoy great music and great BBQ! For more information call Lauren Parcetich at 540-721-1203 or go to www.visitsmithmountainlake.com.

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Posted by on in Uncategorized

Are you planning to come? Next week is the SML Chamber Business Expo and the Rockin’ Brews and BBQ Festival.  Come learn about all that SML has to offer on Friday from noon – 5:00 PM then have some SML fun with barbecue, music and fun on Saturday from 11:00 – 6:00 PM.  

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Have you made your plans?  The Smith Mountain Lake Rockin’ Brews and BBQs Festival will be here soon on Saturday, April 26th from 11:00 – 6:00 PM.  The Smith Mountain Lake Chamber of Commerce sponsors the annual event that boasts the best music, brews and barbecues with various sauces.  There are also activities for the kids and the always beautiful backdrop of Smith Mountain Lake.  So bring the family and meet us in Downtown Moneta at Route 608 and 122.  Admission is $5.00.  Children 12 and under are free.

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The 17th Annual SML Invitational Tournament hosts a full field of golfers representing a wide variety of businesses from the Smith Mountain Lake region. The 18-hole-event-format is Captain’s Choice four-person best-ball with cash and prizes awarded. This year’s signature sponsor is The Willard Companies.

Registration & Range Open: 11:30 -12:45, Lunch: 11:30 -12:30, Shotgun Start: 1:00 PM, $240.00 Foursome – $60.00 per player, sponsored by the SMLRCC.

The third in the trio of courses owned and operated by Smith Mountain Lake golf pioneer Ron Willard, The Westlake Golf and Country Club was founded as Chestnut Creek by its original developers. Designed by golf architect Russell Breeden, known for his courses across Virginia and in the Myrtle Beach, S.C. area, The Westlake is a striking 18-hole course centered around a restored farmhouse that has been converted into a clubhouse, restaurant, pro shop and banquet facility. The Westlake is semiprivate and members may reserve tee times up to seven days in advance; the public may reserve up to three days in advance: 800-296-7277 or 540-721-44214

To sign up to play in this year’s event, contact Lauren Parcetich at 540-721-1203 or go online to www.visitsmithmountainlake.com. The scheduled Rain Date is Friday, May 31, 2013.

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For some seasonal holiday lights head to Bedford for the annual Holiday Lights Display on

Dec. 14th -31st enjoy the extensive decorations and approximately 50,000 lights that adorn the

grounds at the Elks National Home in Bedford. The Elks home is located on 931 Ashland Ave.

in Bedford, Va. and is a retirement community dedicated entirely to the Elks membership. The

beautiful Elks National Home has been called the “Crown jewel of Elkdown”.


The home is open daily at 5:30 p.m. through Dec. 31. Admission to the Holiday Light event is

free. For more information, visit 540.586.8232 or go online to www.elkshome.org

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Leslie Becker, AIA, AIPP, FIABCI, NAR
Licensed in the State of VA


P: 540.797.0477 | F: 866.507.5289
PO Box 50
Huddleston, VA 24104

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