Temple Hall….where is it? What is it? According to the web site: “A regional park, Temple Hall is a working farm dedicated to preserving the agriculture and natural resources of Loudoun County. It exists as a recreational and educational facility for children and adults who want to learn about the diverse aspects of animal and crop farming.” And how did the Piedmont Driving Club end up there? Look no further than dedicated members Al and Vicki Baturay. It seems that on days when they aren‘t driving with the Club, they are scouting new territory. What a prize they found in Temple Hall! It boasts over 5 miles of superbly groomed trails, all suitable for carriages. And…..it is adjacent to a winery. What could be better? Fabbioli Cellars welcomed 10 carriages and many guests, giving us ample parking, our own tent and a delightful lady to keep our wine glasses full during the picnic phase of our adventure.
The Club was proud to display 5 pairs and 5 singles, all splendidly turned out. Driving pairs were Carl Cox (with his wife Caroline and Club President Anne Watkins), Mary Munster (with Club member Pat McCann), Caroline Collomb (with guest Bridgette, visiting from Belgium), Al Baturay (with wife, Vicki) and new member Mark Duffell (with Dixie Noffsinger and her daughter, Dawn) with his magnificent Belgian draft horses. Singles were driven by Barbara Wolf (with husband Tom), Wayne Porter (with guest Joan Cameron), Sam Davis (with Club member Kitty Newman), Marci Bade (with husband Keith) and new member Anna Koopman with her elegant Morgan.We were pleased to see Club member Kari LaBell is recovering well from recent hip replacement surgery and we look forward to seeing her back on the box seat.
The weather was perfect, as was the scenery and the “going”. It was a short trip down a wide gravel road to the entrance of Temple Hall Farm. Once inside the gate, there was mowed grass, plenty of shade along the lanes that embraced rows of corn, and a nice path through the woods with a couple of well placed water crossings. Yes it is a farm and, yes, there were sheep and cattle off in the distance, but the horses were undaunted. Perhaps the most curious creature they encountered was a peacock who surveyed the passing carriages from his perch on a porch railing. He seemed a gentle soul and so it was without incident that we returned to the grounds of Fabbioli Cellars where we commenced our picnic. As is typical of our Club, the food was fabulous, with unending platters of beef, barbecue, salads, fresh tomatoes, beets, “just picked this morning cantaloupe, quiche, cheese trays and even a home made birthday cake for Keith Bade! While I’m certain there were sodas and bottled water, most people seemed to gravitate to the case of Fabbioli’s fine wines that was supplied by the Cox/Baturay alliance. Everyone had a great time and we were even given wine glasses as mementos of the day! We are indebted once again to Vicki and Al Baturay for all that they do for this Club.