January Jams at Barter Theatre
Make it a music-packed weekend with this three day itinerary
Abingdon Music Experience presents January Jams at Barter Theatre, sponsored by Blue Ridge Beverage. This annual series showcases intimate concerts with music legends on stage at the historic Barter Theatre each weekend during the month of January.
Barter Theatre is traditionally "dark" in January, so it's the perfect venue for a winter concert series. January Jams puts Grammy-Award winning artists on stage each weekend of the month. An intimate venue with just 500 seats, Barter offers a unique experience with these musicians that cannot be replicated anywhere else.
Build the perfect weekend around the January Jams concerts. Take advantage of special rates at Comfort Suites Abingdon, with January Jams packages starting at just $135/night plus tax.
Day One - Friday
Arrive in Abingdon Friday afternoon to explore historic downtown Abingdon before the Friday evening show.
Take a walk on the famous Virginia Creeper Trail. This spectacular recreation trail starts in downtown Abingdon, making it the perfect spot for a quick stroll, or a longer run.
If you arrive early enough, pop over to Abingdon Vineyards for a late afternoon tour and tasting. This farm winery is located on the banks of the South Holston River, and features a cozy indoor tasting room as well as a scenic patio. See how the new owners have combined Napa Valley winemaking techniques with the unique micro-climate of Southwest Virginia.
Grab a bite to eat before the show. Local favorite JJ's Restaurant and Sports Bar always has a January Jams special, but you'll have plenty to choose from: with over 30 independent eateries, Abingdon has more restaurants per capita than New York City.
January Jams concerts all start at 8:00pm, doors open at 7:15pm. Depending on the weekend, you'll see bluegrass legends, hot names in indie rock, or the new faces of country music.
After the show, keep the fun going with the late night menu at Rain Restaurant or White Birch Food & Juice. Both are known for their craft cocktails.
Day Two - Saturday
While visiting Southwest Virginia, make plans to visit The Birthplace of Country Music Museum. The museum is an affiliate of the Smithsonian Institution, and tells the story of the 1927 Bristol Sessions recordings, explores how evolving sound technology shaped their success, and highlights how this rich musical heritage lives on in today’s music. Through text and artifacts, multiple theater experiences, and interactive displays – along with a variety of educational programs, music performances, and community events – the exciting story of these recording sessions and their far-reaching influence comes alive.
Fight the winter blues with a relaxing salt-room session at Salt of the Earth. Salt Therapy aka halotherapy is a powerful, natural treatment in a controlled air environment that simulates a natural salt cave micro-climate. Or head to The Martha Washington Inn & Spa for a massage.
Before the 8:00 show, get your pre-game on at Wolf Hills Brewing. Located in downtown Abingdon, it's an easy walk to Barter Theatre, so there's no need to drive. Wolf Hills Brewing Co. melds together time honored brewing methods using only the highest quality ingredients with modern beer styles. The result is a level of fresh, savory beer that is unmatched in this region. With a rotating list of over a dozen craft beers, Wolf Hills takes its brewing seriously! Popular brews include White Blaze Honey Cream Ale, and Wolf's Den Double IPA.
For more live music, try Bone Fire Smokehouse and Musictorium on Main Street.
Day Three - Sunday
Before leaving town, indulge in a hearty southern brunch at the The Southwest Virginia Cultural Center & Marketplace.
Southwest Virginia Cultural Center and Marketplace is the gateway to Southwest Virginia’s rich culture and creative economy. Here you can see the work of regional artisans and musicians and find out about Southwest Virginia’s history, heritage, outdoor recreation and scenic beauty via stories and first-person narratives.
The center's cafe, open daily, serves up soups, sandwiches and daily specials highlighting the best of this 19-county region, as well as an extensive selection of food products, like preserves, grits, pickles and beer and wine.
It's also the headquarters of The Crooked Road: Virginia's Heritage Music Trail. Learn more about the rich musical legacy of this Appalachian region.