"Mathews 23109" Mathews by b1bob

Mathews Travel Guide: 16 reviews and 18 photos

A few weeks before I took a day trip to Mathews, Virginia, it never really occurred to me to go there, despite having an open invitation by friends of my family. However, a little more than a week beforehand, Gaynelle told me the town was having a festival called Market Days which, by her description, was rather like the Virgilina Summerfest: a carnival atmosphere with lots of crafts kiosks and food. She also invited me to pop in on them at their weekend and holiday getaway in nearby Port Haywood. Besides, this is my first new VT page in quite awhile.

On Saturday, 6 September 2003, I was off for Mathews a little bit later than I planned. It was a pleasant ride especially going through the more sparsely populated middle peninsula towns like West Point (the Army academy is in New York state, not Virginia). Hearing the tyres cross the drawbridges reminded me of a time when I was really young and such unusual noises freaked me out.

Mathews is a typical small town on the Chesapeake Bay. It's a little larger than Virgilina, Virginia, closer to the size of Oxford, North Carolina. The festival was about like what I expected. I was impressed with the general store. I was really happy to see a Rexall sign (because that usually means a soda fountain is inside). I found out it had closed a few years back, but locals tell me it will reopen as a soda fountain. When it does, I will update my tip.

On 18 September 2003, Hurricane Isabel put much of Mathews, Virginia under water. Some places had more than 8 feet (2,5 m.) of water. For a brief time, the Chesapeake Bay and Mobjack Bay came together. Sammy and Gaynelle's place was totally flooded, but they vowed to rebuild.

Pros and Cons
  • Pros:Small town America in action.
  • Cons:Too far off the beaten path for most.
  • Last visit to Mathews: Sep 2003
  • Intro Updated Oct 25, 2003
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Reviews (15)

Comments (32)

  • May 29, 2008 at 5:51 AM

    All your websites have great information! Thanks for you email! i am just very busy!

  • ATXtraveler's Profile Photo
    May 1, 2008 at 2:22 PM

    Can we get an update on how Gaynelle and the town is doing now that Isabel has come and gone?

  • Mikebond's Profile Photo
    Oct 10, 2007 at 7:47 AM

    Interesting page Nat! I like the parish church and the lighthouse!

  • Aug 28, 2006 at 9:10 AM

    Is Sibley's still open? Last I heard things wwere up in the air. Regards.

  • deecat's Profile Photo
    Jun 3, 2005 at 11:32 AM

    Another amall town page, which I love. Found the soda fountain information heartfelt..I long for the old soda fountains as part of the drug stores. Learned a new term from you here "come here's". You are a riot!

  • easyoar's Profile Photo
    Apr 17, 2005 at 12:15 PM

    Nice page Nat! But what precisely is a soda fountain? It's one of those American terms I have never got to terms with!

  • Oct 31, 2004 at 7:37 AM

    I second Bobby there - Irish pub sounds great, hope they sell Guinness there :-)

  • Dumpymotel's Profile Photo
    Jun 24, 2004 at 11:02 AM

    Some B&B's are too old and qauint for me... The floors squeek and you can hear the people in the next room hmmmm..... Intimate sounds.

  • Apr 30, 2004 at 3:41 PM

    As long as there is an Irish pub, I'm happy!!! Slainte!!

  • Jmill42's Profile Photo
    Feb 26, 2004 at 3:48 PM

    If there is one thing I am sure of in all my travels, its that there is an Irish bar in every city on the planet!! though not many have served big chicken tenders...


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