Marshall is a small, quiet town in northwestern Fauquier County, Virginia. Situated amongst the beautiful scenery of northern Piedmont, the town is surrounded by horse country, wineries, farms, and fine estates. Marshall was originally known as Salem, but went on to be named after John Marshall, the former United States Supreme Court Chief Justice who grew up at Oak Hill in nearby Delaplane.
Marshall is home to the Fauquier Heritage and Preservation Foundation, which collects archival material related to the county's colonial past, and encourages the citizens of Fauquier County to become more familiar with the rich heritage of the area and the legacy of Fauquier County's founding families. Marshall is also home to the Number 18 School, which was the last one-room school in Fauquier County. It has been restored, and you can go visit.
If you’re looking for somewhere to stay in Marshall, look no further than the beautiful Country House, just outside of Marshall. This Civil War property was built in 1865, and – although it has been fully renovated – the original stone structures still remain on the property, including the gate house, icehouse, the original stone oven and stone fireplace. It is a popular spot for honeymoons, weekend retreats, or romantic getaways.
The Olde Izaak Walton Park in Leesburg is a 21-acre public park featuring a pond with a fishing pier, plus lots of trails for you and the pooch to ramble on. Even better, there is a 0.75-acre off-leash dog park located in Olde Izaak Walton Park. The dog park includes a 25,000 square foot fenced area with gravel paths and grass ground cover. The park has waste stations for your pooch, and picnic tables and benches for you. There are no water facilities, however, so don’t forget to bring some. The dog park is open from dawn to dusk and can accommodate up to 10 dogs at one time.
Barrel Oak is a beautiful family-owned winery in Delaplane, Virginia, and to say they’re dog-friendly is putting it mildly! Owners Brian and Sharon Roeder have four dogs, and they have incorporated pooches into all aspects of the company’s branding: from the pups on the labels to the dog named Birch who has his own “desk” in the winemaker’s office. They’ve even named some of their wines after their dogs! Barrel Oak Winery (BOW – get it?) welcomes all visitors, from parents with children and people with dogs to hiking groups fresh off the trail. It’s also been recognized as the #1 Family Friendly Winery in the World by Wine Enthusiast Magazine.
Another ideal spot for wandering with your doggie is Warrenton Branch Greenway. This beautiful trail crosses three town roads and is lined along the way with rhododendrons, viburnums, redbuds, and river birches. There are also mileage markers, informational kiosks, benches, and trash cans all along the trail. Leashed pets are welcome and indeed encouraged on the trail, and there are plenty of pet waste disposal stations along the way. The trail is accessible for people with disabilities at both ends, and with very mild grade changes, it’s a perfect trail for beginners (whether doggie or human!). You can also see an old train caboose that was painstakingly restored by local community volunteers.
Merrifield Garden Center in Manassas, VA is a very dog-friendly garden center -- so much so that they even have their very own dog park! The park has trees and lots of bushes, as well as picnic tables for you to take a load off and maybe have a snack. It also has dog waste facilities and dog bowls, as well as lots of tennis balls for your pooch to play with. The area is covered over to provide shade during the hot summer. Dogs are allowed throughout the garden center and the employees are more than happy to have them around!
If you’re looking for a dog-friendly spot for dinner and maybe a beer, then head to the Red Horse Tavern in the heart of Middleburg, Virginia. A favorite with locals and tourists alike, the tavern has something for everyone, with tables outside for you and your pooch. Choose from appetizers such as bruschetta and quesadillas to salads, sandwiches, and wraps, as well as specialties such as the Irish Burger – their house burger, with provolone cheese, a fried egg, lettuce, and tomato – with beer-battered fries. After all that food, though, you might feel like walking it off, and what better place to take a ramble than the beautiful and historic town of Middleburg?