On Halloween, Unison, one of Loudoun Countyís best preserved historic villages, will hold its rollicking annual Unison Heritage Day and Halloween party in the new Unison Community Center and on the Village Green.
Unison is one of Loudoun Countyís oldest and most peaceful historic villages. Founded by Quakers in the 1730s, it is situated at the northern end of Foxcroft Road (Rte. 626), a State Scenic Road. It also is at the center of three overlapping historic districts. The Unison Village Historic District was placed on the Virginia Landmarks Register and the National Register of Historic Places in 2002/2003 and the 8,000-acre Unison Battlefield Historic District, with help from three federal grants, was placed on state and national historic registers in 2011. The village also is at the center of Loudoun Countyís Beaverdam Creek Historic Roadways District, created in 2002, the only historic district of its kind in the nation. Most of its scenic rural roads are the original 18th and 19th Century dirt roads. A drive to the quiet village (quiet except on Unison Heritage Day), where horses and Black Angus cattle still outnumber residents, is a drive into Loudounís historic past.
The Oct. 31st village festival, from 1 to 5 p.m., will feature wonderful food and barbecue from Middleburgís well known Barbara Paige Caterers, beer and imported wines, fresh-shucked oysters and clams, dozens of homemade pies and desserts by Unisonís historic United Methodist Church. All-afternoon Blue Ridge Mountain music will be performed by the Cobbler Mountain Grass Band.
The lively fair will also feature a visit by the children-friendly hounds of the Piedmont Hunt, the nationís oldest fox-hunting club, a Halloween costume contest for children 12 and under, and live and silent auctions. More than 150 donated items will be auctioned, from art, antiques, restaurant dining and services donated by Loudoun and Fauquier stores, restaurants and residents, including trout-fishing trips and American and foreign vacation adventures. The silent auction is from 1-4:30 p.m.; the live auction begins about 3 p.m.
Sponsored by the nonprofit Unison Preservation Society, proceeds from the annual festival will go toward community programs and improvements to the historic Unison Store, including a new back porch and an easy access entrance. The store was donated to UPS as a community center two years ago, by Middleburg-area philanthropist Dr. Betsee Parker. The 1870s store and Village Green this year have been hosts to art and yoga classes, a history lecture series, outdoor concerts, community gatherings and private dinners and wedding parties. A celebration was held this summer, with local and state officials, to honor the new Battle of Unison sign installed in front of the store. President Lincoln himself planned the 1862 battle, which he hoped might hasten the end of the Civil War. He removed Union Gen. George McClellan from command immediately after the Unison battle for failing to execute the plans.