The Best Ways to Celebrate the 4th of July in Virginia

Categories: Blog, Local Articles, Uncategorized | Posted: June 29, 2018

Fireworks, BBQ’s, hot dogs, parades… These have been constant since America’s founding in 1776! Of course, it took until 1941 for congress to declare the date a national holiday, but we sure know how to celebrate! 


If you look forward to wearing red, white, and blue all year, there’s no better place than patriotic Virginia to celebrate our wonderful country on July 4th! At home or close by, there are many ways to celebrate!


First, you can’t beat a good old fashioned poolside party with friends and neighbors, or a cookout with family in your courtyard! Our homeowners know how to throw a 4th of July party, that’s for sure!  More food than you can imagine, music, decorations, and who knows, maybe some fireworks in the sky! All just steps away from your home.


If you are ready to venture out and be adventuresome, there is a multitude of events that you can attend that are close by or a short drive. You have options!


This summer, get ready for the best festivals, carnivals, concerts, and fireworks around. Here are some of our favorite ways to celebrate in Richmond, Fredericksburg, and the Nation’s capital! Grab the grandkids and take off!


Spotsylvania Stars and Stripes Spectacular

On June 30th, head to the Spotsylvania Courthouse to enjoy live music, delicious food, and fireworks with the whole family! With four concert stages, incredible food and business vendors, historic building tours, children’s rides, and so much more, you and your family will be entertained all day long.


Heritage Festival

Scenic and charming Fredericksburg is hosting an all-day event on the 4th! A five-mile run kicks off the Heritage Festival, followed by an incredible parade. Your grandkids will enjoy activities just for them, including face painting, a moon bound, a photo booth, and more. Live music, historic tours, and fireworks complete this fun festival!


Chesterfield County Fairgrounds

On the 4th from 5 to 9 PM, revel in the magic of a spectacular fireworks display at dark! At the scenic Chesterfield County Fairgrounds, you and your family will enjoy children’s activities, food vendors, and unique entertainment. Make sure to bring comfortable lawn chairs and blankets to enjoy the coolest fireworks you’ve ever seen!


Music and Fireworks at Dogwood Dell

If you love live music, there’s no greater place for the 4th than Dogwood Dell! Hear incredible music by the Richmond Concert Band with Carillon bells, followed by beautiful fireworks. This family-friendly event is completely free! The concert will begin at 7:30 PM, and the fireworks will begin at dusk.


A Game at The Diamond

The Diamond, home of the Richmond Flying Squirrels, hosts one of the biggest and longest fireworks displays in town. If you and your grandkids love America’s pastime, head down to the ballpark on July 4th and enjoy a baseball game in the warm air. The tastiest snacks and most exciting entertainment will be in abundance. At the end of the game, enjoy incredible fireworks!


Star Spangled Celebration

From June 30th to July 4th, bring your grandkids to the Star Spangled Celebration at Kings Dominion! This incredible theme park will be completely filled with red, white, and blue all weekend to get you into the spirit! Enjoy amazing performances from local military bands, magical fireworks, and of course, your favorite rides. Active and retired military, as well as veterans with honorable or medical discharge are admitted for free!


Ashland Celebration

Ashland Parade Cornerstone Homes

Over 100 years old, this incredible celebration speaks to why Ashland is a “great small town to live in.” Around 20,000 visitors will enjoy old-fashioned fun with a walking parade, live music, delicious food, lawn games, a patriotic pet contest, and of course, an apple pie contest (as American as it gets!)


Celebrations in D.C.

Both Fredericksburg and Richmond offer a close proximity to our nation’s cornerstone homes 4th of julycapital, where the celebrations always reach new heights! From the annual National Independence Day Parade, to stunning fireworks along the D.C. skyline and memorials, to a Potomac River Cruise, you can take your pick of memorable, one-of-a-kind activities in our country’s capital.


No matter what your plans are, enjoy your family and friends and a relaxing day! Happy Birthday America!!!



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Corner Patch Garden Event

Categories: Uncategorized | Posted: June 8, 2018

We recently held our first Corner Patch Garden social mixer! Things got off to a hopping start as homeowner hands were busy harvesting kale, swiss chard, a variety of lettuces, sugar snaps, and more. After they washed the veggies, our farmer/garden coach/chef, Sean Sheppard, began to prepare some culinary delights!

The yummy highlights included Stuffed Leeks right off of the skillet! The stuffing was made from leeks, mushrooms, cream cheese, and a few other ingredients. This specific preparation of leeks is mind-blowing! Next was Asian Stir Fry, in which Sean chopped all the ingredients the homeowners just picked, and added a few carrots, broccoli, cauliflower, olive oil, and soy sauce. Sauteed to perfection, the stir fry was a crunchy, healthy veggie dish that you can make in your own kitchen!


Another crowd favorite was Carrot Top Pesto. That’s right, pesto made from the tops of carrots with just a little bit of basil thrown in. We dipped fresh broccoli and cauliflower into the mix. So economical and tasted wonderful. 

More cooking continued while the sun went down and we made Mojitos with fresh mint. Pro tip: don’t put too much salt in the shaker! 🙂 Everyone mingled and enjoyed watching and sampling Sean’s creations, while learning tips about growing our own food and healthy eating. The atmosphere was filled with laughter, the smell of wonderful cooking, and camaraderie.


It was a great evening in the Corner Patch Garden. Everyone went home with bags of fresh produce, new recipes, and information on the next event at the garden. What could be better than having fresh veggies delivered to the clubhouse for your personal use, and gathering in the gardens with your neighbors for healthy, delicious eating, and fellowship? Take advantage of this unique amenity! Grow — Gather — Repeat!
To become a Corner Patch Gardener, and a Cornerstone Homes homeowner, please visit our communities, or fill out our contact form!


Team Member Moment: Janet

Categories: Blog | Posted: May 30, 2018

The Cornerstone Homes team believes that nothing is more fulfilling than guiding our homebuyers through one of the greatest journeys of their lives. Working with our team is the warm welcome to an exhilarating new chapter in your life!

There’s no one that encompasses Cornerstone Homes’ passion better than our Team Member of the Month, Janet Davis, our wonderful Sales Manager for our 55+ Barley Woods community in Fredericksburg.  She joined our team in 2013 and sold out two of our communities in North Carolina. During this time, Janet bravely fought a battle with breast cancer, however, she never missed a beat with the work that she loved and came out stronger than ever.  A survivor, sales superstar, and certified sweetheart, Janet packed up and moved to Fredericksburg to join our team once again. She was involved in the initial phases of the new home designs in Barley Woods and loves seeing everyone’s reaction when they walk into the models.  “The first words are usually “Oh Wow!” They love the uniqueness of these plans.” Janet is extremely excited to work with potential homeowners at Barley Woods! 

The home building real estate industry is in her blood. Janet began her career in real estate around 40 years ago working for a custom home builder. She says that her favorite part about working with Cornerstone Homes is watching buyers attain their forever home: “It thrills me to see what they imagined come to fruition. My reward is definitely seeing their happiness.”

When she’s not helping clients achieve their dreams, Janet loves interior designing, sewing, and upholstery. She also loves being active and involved in her community in any way that she can! One thing that people don’t know about her is that she’s a concert singer and served as the Choir Director of her Church.

Janet, proud mother of three and grandmother of six, goes through each day with a motto in mind: “I try to live all of life’s experiences with an eye towards being the very best I can be and with everything being positive for me and all those around.” Her positivity is infectious to everyone around her, from the Cornerstone Homes team to our happy homeowners! Janet’s experience in customer service and genuine kindness are two of the easiest things to notice when you meet her.

Needless to say, we truly love working with Janet at Cornerstone Homes. We’re so happy to have you, Janet! For more information on our Barley Woods community, please visit our webpage, or call Janet at  540-699-3009.


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Cornerstone Homes Team Member Moment: Kevin McElroy

Categories: Blog | Posted: April 6, 2018

Cornerstone HomesAt Cornerstone Homes, we are dedicated to meeting a higher standard. A higher sense of community between neighbors. A higher quality of homes built. Overall, a higher standard of living for our homeowners. We could not accomplish this caliber without the hard work, dedication, and passion of every single one of our team members. We are happy to share that we are starting a monthly ‘Team Member Moment’ to give you a moment, or two, to personally get to know the people that will be building your new home!


Our first Team Member Moment highlights our vibrant and high-spirited Construction Superintendent – Kevin McElroy! If you couldn’t already tell by Kevin’s smile, he lights up every room he walks into. Kevin has been working in construction for over 27 years, 25 of those as a superintendent. Along with that accomplishment, he was recently awarded the 2017 President’s Club Award for the most homes constructed. From apartments and condos to single-family homes, Kevin has worked on it all. His passion for building the space where people will create memories is showcased in every single home that he completes.



As a company, we know that our homeowners value their freedom and their ability to enjoy a carefree lifestyle, so we asked Kevin what he enjoys to do in his free time…


Kevin, aside from being an avid hockey fan and fisher, is a huge family man and loves to enjoy his hobbies with his family by his side. He supports his local community and spends time with his friends at restaurants in the area.



Along with lifting everyone else’s spirits on the job site, Kevin is also a spirited man when it comes to religion. His values even further connect him to the sense of community and feeling of HOME that he aims to create with every home he works on.


Currently, Kevin is completing our nationally recognized, Villas at Ashlake, community. Aside from building, there is nothing that makes Kevin feel more fulfilled than the words of happy homeowners. If you’d like to stop by to see the progress on these communities and discuss your opportunity to become one of Kevin’s happy homeowners, please reach out by contacting us!


Thank you, Kevin, for all that you add to Cornerstone Homes!


Team Member Spotlight… Meet Stephen Bello, Purchasing Manager

Categories: Blog | Posted: February 9, 2018


Featured Team Member - Stephen


While Cornerstone Homes can speak volumes on their own, we also have a dynamic team that makes our company really stand out.

One of those team members is Purchasing Manager, Stephen Bello. He uses his years of experience in new home construction to negotiate the best deals with our trade partners and suppliers – which saves our homebuyers money.

What do you enjoy most about your job?

I love building and developing relationships with our trade partners and suppliers.

What did you do prior to coming to Cornerstone Homes?

Prior to coming here, I handled purchasing for Centex Homes.

I have been in new construction my entire career… In addition to sales, I ran my own framing business, and managed and ran an insulation company.

What do you do in your free time?

I love to play golf or fish when I have the time. And I enjoy spending time with my three girls.

Stephen was part of our last hard hat tour in Fredericksburg – and everyone just loved talking to him! Come meet Stephen – and many of our other remarkable team members at Cornerstone Homes!

The Corner Patch Gardens are all set for the winter!

Categories: Blog, Home & Garden | Posted: January 4, 2018

One of the best amenities at Cornerstone Homes is our new Corner Patch Gardens. And thanks to our professional community gardener, Sean Sheppard, our gardens are all prepped for the winter.

Sean has planted a variety of cold-weather crops, including kale, arugula, lettuce, swish chard, purple cabbage, mustard greens, carrots, beets and radishes. And the flowerbeds have been planted with cover crops. He has also sealed the beds up with a cloth-like material that transmits light and water but protects from frost and wind. With all his hard work, our gardens are set for the winter. And we can’t wait until Spring!

In our region, gardens and farms are an ingrained part of the community. Our local family farms take great pride in providing us with fresh produce, eggs, milk and other healthy fare. It is our hope that our Corner Patch Gardens will be able to offer some of the same benefits to our residents, encouraging them to eat and live better.

Good friends make the best neighbors!

Categories: Blog, Buying & Selling Your Home | Posted: December 27, 2017

There are a lot of perks to being a Cornerstone Homes homeowner. Now, there’s one more. Introducing our Homeowner Referral Program!

Our referral program helps create close-knit communities. So spread the word about our Cornerstone Communities to your friends and family. Bring them to a neighborhood function so they can experience what a fun and exciting place it is to live for themselves!

What could be better than getting to choose your own neighbors? By referring friends and family who would be interested in living in one of our communities, everyone wins! They get to enjoy the Cornerstone Homes lifestyle – and you get FREE HOA dues for six months if they buy a Cornerstone home!

The Homeowner Referral Program is soooo easy!

  • Refer a friend/family member who has not previously visited and met with the Sales Team. You must complete the referral form and submit it to your Sales Team prior to your friend’s first visit.
  • When your friend/family member closes on their new home, you will be notified of your free HOA dues reward. (Your HOA dues will be paid directly to the property management company.)
  • Sit back and enjoy your maintenance-free lifestyle with six month of FREE HOA dues! (That’s a lot of shoes to buy!)

At Cornerstone Homes, we are committed to building neighborhoods with a strong sense of community. This happens as people come together to make their neighborhoods their own. Share the joy of living here with your nearest and dearest.

We look forward to meeting your friends and family, and helping you pick your neighbors.

We Kicked Off The Season With a Rockin’ Neighborhood Holiday Event at Ashlake!

Categories: Blog | Posted: December 18, 2017

Cornerstone Homes helped kick off the holiday season with our Neighborhood Jingle & Mingle event at The Villas at Ashlake sales office, on November 29th.

25-plus attendees mixed and mingled with their future neighbors, enjoying holiday treats and festive music as they took the first step toward making lasting friendships at Ashlake!


One of the reasons we hold “mingle events” is so that our new homeowners can start the process of forming new friendships. Friendships are vitally important for health and emotional wellbeing, especially as we get older. That’s why Cornerstone Communities are dedicated to creating an environment that fosters close-knit relationships. 

“This event was a great opportunity for our homeowners to get to know each other. They got to see where they will live, and started talking and planning for the future,” said salesperson Carrie Jamieson Morak. “This is the best group of homeowners. We can’t wait to see who else is coming to live at Ashlake!”


In the spirit of the season, our guests also brought donations of canned food items for the Chesterfield Food Bank, a nonprofit organization committed to being a hand up to individuals that need help but have fallen through the cracks of our governmental social services programs and our community. 

It was a good time all around, as we launched the holiday season – and a lifetime of fun!

Top Holiday Must-Do’s in the Richmond Area

Categories: Blog, Richmond, VA | Posted: November 29, 2017

The holidays are always fun and festive in the Richmond area. Thanks to the maintenance-free Cornerstone lifestyle, you have more time to spend with your grandkids during the holidays! Luckily, there’s plenty of revelry for your family to enjoy. Here are a few of our favorites!

34th Annual Richmond Christmas Parade

December 2, 2017

Downtown Richmond, VA

The Annual Christmas Parade will depart from the Science Museum on W. Broad Street and continue east to 7th Street. The parade will feature a very special Grand Marshal, holiday floats, marching bands, huge helium balloons, and, of course, Santa himself.


Historical Christmas

December 9, 2017

Henricus Historical Park – Chester, VA

Experience the changing traditions of English Christmas during the reigns of King James I (1621), King George III (1776) and Queen Victoria (1864).


Miracle of Christmas – Live Nativity Pageant

December 21, 22 & 23, 2017

Metro Richmond Zoo – Outdoors (dress for the weather)

Live re-enactment of the Christmas story featuring animals from the zoo. The 20-minute pageant is free; they will be collecting non-perishable foods to help families in need.


Tacky Light Tours

Black Friday –  January 1, 2017

Metro Richmond area

Featuring private homes throughout Richmond and the surrounding areas, Tacky Lights tours are available in both guided and self-guided versions. Check out the ever-growing list of homes with The Richmond Times Dispatch Tacky Lights guide.


Visit the “Legendary Santa”

November 24 – December 24, 2017

Children’s Museum of Richmond – Richmond location

Since 1936, visiting the Legendary Santa has been a holiday tradition. Today, Santa makes his holiday home at the Children’s Museum of Richmond, where he and his faithful elves and the Snow Queen are available for visits. Check out The Genworth Foundation Holiday Village while you’re here, too!


Outdoor Ice Skating

November 10 – January 15, 2017

The Rink at West Broad Village – Glen Allen, VA

If you’re looking for a place to make winter memories and enjoy some quality family time, then the Rink at West Broad Village fits the bill. This scenic outdoor rink offers skate rentals, lessons, public skating, private event options, and more! Check out their extended holiday hours.

Corner Patch Garden Party…Neighborhoods in Bloom!

Categories: Blog | Posted: October 10, 2017

In case you missed the grand unveiling of Cornerstone’s first Corner Patch Garden, please read on!

Our Corner Patch Garden Grand Opening event on September 23rd was buzzing with activity. Not only did our visitors enjoy tours of the model homes, and ice cream on the Lake Pavilion, but the highlight was the cooking demonstrations from harvests right from the Corner Patch Gardens. Under the garden pergola, Sean Sheppard, the Corner Patch’s farmer/garden coach demonstrated cooking techniques with produce grown in the community gardens. Everyone enjoyed learning new recipes and tasting healthy cooking such as eggplant sautéed with tomatoes, cucumber and cauliflower salad, and watermelon and feta salad.

Corner Patch GardensCorner Patch Gardens

These “harvest events” will occur on a regular basis with the homeowners at each  Cornerstone community. Fun, educational and a chance to mingle with the neighbors is what it is all about.  It’s also a great way to learn a healthier way of cooking and eating! The Gardens will be a great amenity for all our communities.

Corner Patch GardensCorner Patch Gardens

“Our clubhouses will always be the social hubs of our communities,” said Roger Glover, owner of Cornerstone Homes. “But we’re also thinking beyond the clubhouse and creating unique health, wellness, and education amenities. Our homeowners want more than just leisure and low-maintenance living. They’re hungry to learn and grow and continually improve themselves. And, of course, have a lot of fun in the process. That’s the whole idea behind The Corner Patch Gardens which will be in all our comunities moving forward.”

Ice Cream Cornerstone HomesLake Pavilion Cornerstone Homes

Ice Cream was served by Brusters on the Lake Pavilion. This beautiful amenity at the Villas at Magnolia Lakes is the perfectplace for fishing, canoeing, and any other water related activity you can think of! The Lake Pavilion and boardwalk promotes walking, relaxing, all those things you deserve at this time in your life.

Our boardwalk and trails also lead to our newest community – The Cove! Make sure to sign up for VIP updates with more information coming very soon! Sign-Up Here.

Sean will be sure to return on a regular basis at The Corner Patch Gardens, bringing along some delicious Fall treats and demonstrations! He will teach our homeowners how to turn their own private courtyard into an ever-blooming source of enjoyment. Have a feeling you can’t wait until the next event? Then make one of Farmer Sean’s recipes for yourself!


Watermelon Salad RecipeCorner Patch Garden Watermelon Salad

  • 1 lb cubed chunks of watermelon (about half a small watermelon)
  • 1/2 lb shredded jicama root (approx. half of a jicama root, peeled, cut into chunks and passed through the ricer attachment on a food processor)
  • 1 to 2 cups crushed walnuts (per preference)
  • 3 oz feta cheese (chunks or crumbles)
  • 4 tbsp balsamic vinaigrette (balsamic vinegar, olive oil, garlic pepper)
  • Serve immediately!
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