Author: Leona Baker

A Taste of Suffolk History at the Truitt House

Violet-eyed film icon Elizabeth Taylor knew how to make an entrance—on screen and off. In the grand foyer of the Truitt House in downtown Suffolk, I can’t help but imagine an impossibly bejeweled Taylor elegantly descending the shallow steps of the home's exquisite floating staircase. She may have done just…

A Mind-Bending Virtual Journey

Never underestimate the power of imagination—even in the face of a lingering pandemic. In a new virtual production co-commissioned by the Virginia Arts Festival, renowned mentalist and performance artist Scott Silven gets inside the memories, minds and hearts of audience…

2020 Giving Back Awards Winners

While this year may be one most of us are anxious to put in the rearview mirror, 2020 was also a time when those willing to be of service to their communities reflected the best of human nature while faced…

2020 Community Impact Awards Winners

The businesses listed on the following pages—from food trucks to law firms, dental practices to security agencies—do so much more than serve customers. Please join us in celebrating our Community Impact honorees for all the ways they go above and…

Ham It Up in Smithfield This Season

“For a little country store in the middle of nowhere, you have to have a niche. Ours is inside that building,” says DeeDee Darden, motioning to a rectangular pine and cinder block structure with a bright red coat of paint.…

Apple Fritters Recipe for the Fall

Photos by Kathy Keeney | Recipe by Jacqui Renager European and early versions of apple fritters in the U.S. often called for whole apple slices dipped in batter and lightly fried. The all-American staple people have come to know and…

Summer Reading Suggestions from Norfolk's Prince Books

Among the silver linings of the coronavirus pandemic was the opportunity to set aside many of the high-paced distractions of modern life in favor of the simpler things we love. High on the list of many people’s stay-at-home activities: cracking…

Summer in a Mason Jar Tomato Jam Recipe

Photos by Kathy Keeney | Recipe by Jacqui Renager As backyard gardens begin overflowing with sun-ripened beefsteaks and Coastal Virginia farm stands are boasting a rainbow crop of heirlooms and old favorites, tomatoes rightfully take center stage on summer plates.…

2020 Marks the 20th Anniversary of The Norva

If the walls of The NorVa could talk, they’d probably ask how much time you have. The former Vaudeville theater in downtown Norfolk, originally opened in 1922, celebrated its 20th anniversary as a now-legendary local pop music venue on…

Quarantine Cooking: Soft-shell Crabs Benedict

COASTAL BRUNCH: A delicacy synonymous with spring, crisp-fried soft-shells pair perfectly with the zing of classic hollandaise. (All photos by Kathy Keeney)   Sure, we’re all stuck at home these days. But spring has sprung and there is still a plethora of great…

Coastal Grill Offering Gourmet Meal Prep Kits

As local restaurants and small businesses of all kinds look for creative ways to serve their customers and the community during the Coronavirus pandemic, there is a silver lining in some of their delicious innovations. Virginia Beach mainstay Coastal Grill,…

New Musical on Edgar Cayce Premieres at Zeiders

“The audience will be traveling through time and space over a period of several thousand years,” says Bart Kuebler, music and artistic director of Zeiders American Dream Theater, of the new musical Remembering Tomorrow: The Lives of Edgar Cayce. An enigmatic…

Tenth TASTE Location Opens in Town Center

Virginia Beach Town Center just got a little tastier. TASTE, the popular Virginia Beach-born gourmet specialty food market and café, celebrated the opening of its 10th location—this one with a prominent presence in Virginia Beach’s Town Center—with a ribbon-cutting ceremony…

Lemon-Ups and Lobster Shine at 12th Annual Samoa Soiree

Girl Scouts of the Colonial Coast A wintery forecast couldn’t stop the sweet and savory fun and Mardi Gras-themed festivities at the 12th annual Samoa Soiree held at the Westin Hotel in Virginia Beach on Feb. 20. Hosted by the Girl Scouts of the…

Cheese It Up Food Truck Debuts in Virginia Beach

There’s a new food truck in Coastal Virginia, and owner Mike McMurphy isn’t shy about hitting you with the ooey-gooey good stuff. It says so right in the name. Cheese It Up food truck—easy to spot with its bright blue…

Eat, Play, Love: Fun and Games at Laid-Back Eateries

A little over a year ago, the erstwhile Sonoma at Virginia Beach Town Center effectively transformed itself into the restaurant version of a mullet—business in the front, party in the back. Or maybe the other way around. Their long-running upscale…

Wines and Spirits at CoVa WineFest

Photo by David Uhrin We recently told you about the craft beers and ciders that will be available in the Virginia Craft Beer Garden at the the 2020 Coastal Virginia Magazine WineFest, Jan. 25–26 at the Virginia Beach Convention Center. Now let’s talk…

The Joy of Local Cooking Classes

Photos by Jim Pile and David Uhrin A certain level of deference is owed to a woman wielding a knife. In the case of high-energy Chef Mary Cook, make that three knives. The only three knives you’ll ever truly need…

Craft Beers Offered at CoVa WineFest

You know who they are. Those people who show up at a wine festival and head straight for a glass of…wait…IPA? But it’s cool. We’ve got you covered. Beer and cider lovers are welcome at the 2020 Coastal Virginia Magazine…

10 New Restaurants to Try in Coastal Virginia

Coastal Virginia is a place flourishing with flavor, thanks in part to some exceptional eateries that opened recently. From a raw bar and tiki bar to a gem for gluten-free fare, a waterside watering hole with views aplenty and that…

2019 Community Impact Awards: Businesses Giving Back to the Community

Successful businesses are defined by much more than their annual profits, the products they sell or the services they offer. Innovative business leaders understand their organizations have a unique opportunity through philanthropy to engage with the community, contribute to the…

Giving Back Awards: Navy Special Operations Foundation

Special Forces: NSOF Executive Director Suzanna Fisher and Director Adam Fleck. Photo by David Uhrin “I transformed. I had to accept a new set of circumstances, and resolve to thrive anyway,” writes Brad Snyder in his inspiring book A Fire…