Montross Virginia Part I: Murals and Milkshakes

As my GPS informed me of my arrival I glanced out the window just in time to see a beautiful mural on the side of a building. "Welcome to Montross, the Heart of the Northern Neck," the art proclaimed. George Washington and two kayakers welcomed me to this quaint hamlet in Westmoreland County, Virginia from their colorful residence on the roadside. I started to feel like I was on vacation.




As I continued my drive I passed mural after mural, gorgeous vintage harbingers of my experience that was about to commence in small town USA. There was a small elf-like creature offering me a refreshing 1940's Coca-Cola. There were mermaid sirens calling me to enjoy some Rappahannock River oysters, art & coffee. There was even a crocodile encouraging me to brush my teeth. This place was turning out to be quite interesting and I hadn't even stopped my car yet.

The murals of Montross, Virginia, a small town in Westmoreland County


In a few minutes I reached my first destination, an old fashioned small motel on the side of the highway with ducks swimming in the bright green water of the pond out front. I checked in at the Washington & Lee motel front desk and checked out my...let's say 'classical'...room. The wood panels on the wall, maroon rug and front door that functioned with an actual metal key had me feeling like I was in an old 70's movie.


The Washington & Lee Motel, $65 A night, on Kings Highway in Montross, VA


Typically I would have camped out at nearby Westmoreland State Park Campground, but since I was spending the entire day and night in town, I figured it would be much easier to stay local. Instead of choosing the beautiful Montross Inn Bed & Breakfast, a place I will be spending time on my next trip into town, I went the more thrifty route. But it was still local enough to where I had a nice and easy walk from my room to the downtown village area.


My new friends, the ducks of the Washington & Lee Motel, swimming in the large pond out front.


After some brief unpacking I decided I would grab a bite to eat. I walked down the street and saw a building with giant words affixed to the different sections of the roof. "HAMBURGERS", "SHAKES", "SUNDAES", this roof was speaking my language.

The Dairy Freeze fast food & milkshake shop, complete with a mini game room / arcade

This was the Dairy Freeze, a fast-food style hamburger and milkshake joint with a sort of drive-in feel. I could imagine my 8th grade self spending many hours here playing air hockey or Mortal Kombat in the arcade room, drinking milkshake after milkshake and then heading next door to the Roller Skating Rink hoping a girl would ask me to be the one during couples skate (the rink is still open by the way).





A quick burger and UNREAL Oreo shake down the hatch and I was back out the door. I walked back to the hotel and saw a large barn in the distance with what looked to be a food truck parked out front. I was a little too curious to not check it out, so I walked over and before I got there the smell of smoked barbecue hit my nostrils. I think I floated the rest of the way there.




The bright red food truck parked next to the dirt lot was called Plan B Barbecue (or Plan BBBQ?) and it offered an awesome looking menu of barbecue sandwiches, ribs, sides and more. Plus, their logo was a big with a bow tie and cowboy hat riding a catfish like a horse, so...how can you not be down with that?

I was a little filled up by my Dairy Freeze, so I just ordered a chili dog. It was awesome. I ate it at the picnic table by the barn watching other drive-by customers ordering what looked to be delicious meals.


Plan B Barbecue Truck, parked by the wooden barn on King's Highway in Montross, Virginia


My huge lunch was over but my day in Montross was just beginning. Next up was the reason I came into town. It was the First Friday Artwalk in the Village, and I was ready for it!


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