wsls logo

7 things you’ll want to add to your summer bucket list right now

Sugar Magnolia ice cream.
Sugar Magnolia ice cream. (Photo by Sarah Hauser, Virginia Tourism Corporation, provided by Montgomery County Regional Tourism.)

We have to imagine everyone is itching with excitement at the prospect of summer, because we sure are.

If you’ve ever ventured through Montgomery County, Virginia -- whether it be via Blacksburg or Christiansburg -- you’re surely aware of just how much there is to do. If you’re overwhelmed by all of it, we have a simple bucket list, if you will, of all the places you’ll definitely want to stop, as well as things you’ll want to do this summer.

Before we dive in, we’ll let you in on a little secret that (we think) is possibly the best part: You can rent a bicycle through a ride-sharing program and it will quickly and easily get you and your friends or family to and from all the destination points you’re going to want to see.

We’ll get back to that shortly. For now, here are seven things you’ll certainly want to plan for this summer:

1. Wonder Universe

This is a must on your list if you’ve got kiddos tagging along. The Wonder Universe children’s museum provides a space in which kids can engage and interact in a fun and educational way. It inspires children and parents to discover and learn about so many different things, together.

This museum really has something for all ages: an exhibit for children ages 0 to 3 that focuses on gross motor skills, a therapeutic sensory environment, a place to learn about harvesting and preparing food, a race track on which you can build your own race car and race a friend, and really, just so much more.

This stop will get your day off to a fun and exciting start.

2. Roam Bikes

Hear us out, because this will add so much fun to your day. Find the nearest Roam Bikes location (there’s one near Wonder Universe!) and check out a bicycle on which you can take the rest of your trip. With 12 locations for pickup or drop-off, you can explore everything along the Huckleberry Trail through Blacksburg, Christiansburg and Montgomery County.

3. Huckleberry Trail

Huckleberry Trail. (Photo provided by Montgomery County Regional Tourism.)

This is going to be a beautiful ride. The Huckleberry Trail system extends nearly 15 miles through rolling terrain that offers a way for pedestrians and bicyclists to reach various recreational, cultural and commercial attractions in the area. You’ll pass through Blacksburg, Virginia Tech and into Christiansburg.

4. Uptown Christiansburg

When you make it to Christiansburg, do a little venturing around what was once the New River Valley Mall area.

There are things like shopping, entertainment and food -- kind of feels like the perfect time to take a break and get a little shopping and lunch in.

When you’re done, hop back on your bike and take it over to Blacksburg.

5. Sugar Magnolia

It’s only right after lunch to get a little dessert. It’s a day of treating yourself!

Sugar Magnolia, in Blacksburg, not only has gourmet chocolates, a slew of ice cream flavors, candies and old-fashioned goodies, but it also carries fun stuff like paper goods, stationary, unique gifts and more. Tell us that Eskimo Kisses cone below doesn’t look so delicious.

If that doesn’t do it for you, you can get an ice cream flight. Did we mention all the flavors are made just down the road in Franklin County?

Sugar Magnolia -- Montgomery County, Virginia. Eskimo kisses ice cream cone: Coconut ice cream kissed with chocolate truffles and a thick blanket of fudge. (Credit: Sugar Magnolia Blacksburg)

6. John’s Cameras and Records

Before you scratch your head at this one, there’s an interesting story here. First of all, the owner, John, does have a large variety of photography products, but he also has a large record section, too. Anyone else experiencing a newfound love for film photography?

But here’s the best part: John has lived in Blacksburg for so long that he has seen a ton of changes. He has so many stories, and he’ll be happy to chat with anyone who walks through the door. It’s always nice to come across friendly faces, isn’t it?

7. Maroon Door

Maroon Door -- Montgomery County, Virginia. (Photo provided by Montgomery County Regional Tourism.)

After a day full of exploration, the next and final must on your list is the Maroon Door and Off the Mall Brewing. We’re telling you, this is the perfect place to take a load off, kick back and enjoy a brew on the patio in the beautiful Virginia weather.

If you’ve worked up an appetite again, they have some amazing food (just look at those plates above, calling your name).

When your adventure is over, you have two options: Ride your bike back to one of the Huckleberry Trail heads, or you can find one near the farmer’s market in Blacksburg, drop it there and drive away. That last option will take a bit more planning.

Similar to dropping your car at the end of a tubing trip, so that it’s there when you’re done, you’ll do the same thing here: Drop a vehicle off in Blacksburg in the morning, go to Christiansburg and start your adventure.

To learn more about all the fun things to do in Montgomery County, click here.