Mathews has a rhythm all its own. Guests of the Inn at Tabbs Creek often remark on the County’s gentle pace, and it’s true: despite being within eighty miles of Richmond and sixty of Hampton Roads, the Pearl of the Chesapeake isn’t in a rush. Our pace is part of our small town charm.
But “slow” isn’t all you’ll find. Visit Mathews County and discover rhythm of a different sort: music!
It might surprise you to hear that a town as small as Mathews can claim its very own Opry, albeit a “Lil’ Ole” one, but we surely do. Housed in the historic Donk’s Theater, Virginia’s Lil’ Ole Opry has been performing to the great pleasure of its fans for forty years. Donk’s claim to fame? Dolly Parton herself graced its stage in 1976. But most of the time, it’s a cast of well-loved regulars: Uncle Jimmy Smith and his daughter Lynda, Shades of Country, and the Mullins Sisters.
Get a taste of the Lil’ Ole Opry experience at Donk’s every other Saturday night from February to December. Upcoming acts include bluesman Steve Motley on May 23 and the first of two celebratory 40th Anniversary Shows on June 6. Tickets are available for purchase at $15 for adults, $12 for seniors, and $5 for kids at the door.
Live music in a sixty-seat restaurant? Stop by Southwind Cafe and see for yourself! Virginia’s best regional acts (and a few further flung) play to a packed house the second and fourth Saturday of every month. Upcoming Southwind acts include ‘Anthony Rosano and the Conqueroos’ on May 23, Southwind favorites ‘Dharma Initiative’ on June 6, and the annual Fathers Day Show with ‘Mixed Grill’s Doug Deforge’ on June 20.
Cover is $5 at the door, the pizza is delicious (we recommend the Berkeley Island Pizza for veggie lovers and the Hogge Island Pizza for the carnivores), and the daily rotation of seasonal specials can’t be beat (try the Jumbo Lump Crab Cakes this summer).
And for those looking to participate in some local music: Southwind hosts a weekly Jam Night every Thursday. Grab a Legend Lager at the bar, pick a guitar off the wall, and jam with the County’s best pluckers.
White Dog Bistro
On a warm summer night, you can ask for no better atmosphere than White Dog Bistro’s Wine Down Bar. Draped with sails and patio lights, this casual outdoor accompaniment to White Dog Bistro’s more formal inside dining room hosts musical acts throughout the spring and summer. Shows start at 7 PM and run until 10 with a cover collected at the Wine Down Bar’s door. Kicking off this summer’s White Dog Bistro lineup: popular reggae band ‘Stuck on a Name’ on May 24th and ‘Paradigm’ on June 7th. Order a cocktail and an appetizer off the Wine Down Bar’s casual fare menu and sit back to enjoy a night of live music under the stars.
Keep an eye on the MCVIC Community Calendar for more events and area information.