Rockfish Valley News: May 2022

The Mark Addy Inn on Route 151 is under renovation by its new owners.

Changes at The Mark Addy

The Mark Addy, a Victorian-style Bed and Breakfast Inn located at the corner of Route 151 and Rhodes Farm Road in Nellysford, has new ownership. The original building, circa 1880, was known as Upland Manor. Prior owners made several renovations that disqualified the main house from historic site designation.  

Rafael and Leslie Tal purchased The Mark Addy in 2006 and were living at the 10-bedroom Inn with their family while running the business, which included a full-service restaurant open to the public.  Leslie Tal sold the business and the 12-acre property to a partnership of local investors from Nelson, Charlottesville, and Waynesboro. The new owners are represented by Chris Kabbash of Avenue Realty in Charlottesville. Kabbash is overseeing remodeling, which includes updates to some of the more than 10 bathrooms, creating a self-service kitchen, and adding new furnishings that maintain the inn’s original style. Becky Seager, owner of Weekender Design, is managing the interior.

View from the Mark Addy

Under Nelson County’s short-term rental ordinance, overnight rentals are to be offered through AirBnb for whole-house as well as day-to-day room guests. 

Current employees of the Mark Addy will return to their roles. 

Afton Mountain Slope Work Completed

In April, VDOT contractors completed a $200,000 project to stabilize the slope between Route 250 and Interstate 64 on Afton Mountain. The section is just beneath the scenic overlook on I-64 near mile marker 100 and above Rt. 250.

Afton slope stabilized. Photo: Malcolm Andrews.

Problems at the rock base were identified last spring when a rockslide closed a lower section of Rt. 250 for several weeks. Deep drilling sent bolts into the mountainside and a special mesh cover now secures the outcropping. 

The scenic overlooks on both highways are now open.

Rockfish Valley Natural History Center Opens

The Natural History Center Museum at Spruce Creek Park on Route 151 in Nellysford will be open during the week from 1 to 3 p.m. thanks to two volunteers. Nathan Parrish will serve as host at the center four days a week, with Milton Hudson hosting on Wednesdays. Parrish, an online student at University of Southern Mississippi, is fulfilling course requirements for 130 volunteer hours. Hudson is retired military and lives with his wife Sharon in Stony Creek. Both have Nelson County heritage.

Rockfish Valley Foundation continues to seek individuals willing to volunteer as hosts to keep the center open to the public after July 29. More information is available at

Skatepark foundation ready to build at RVCC.

Earthmoving begins at RVCC

Freedom Construction, under contract with SL Williams, broke ground for the new skatepark at Rockfish Valley Community Center in April. Together with The Building Goodness Foundation, volunteers are preparing to construct the skate ramp. To join the project volunteers, write to [email protected] 

High School Artists Exhibit

Nelson High School Art Instructor Terry Ward has mounted an exhibit of his students’ work at Rockfish Valley Community Center.  Both individual and group projects are on display in the auditorium. 

“The plan is for the Nelson County High School student art to be decorating the main room when they’re not showing an adult artist,” said Ward, an artist-teacher with art in four museums and one presidential center.  “This show titled “Bigger and Bonier” comes from some big pieces (like Pixel Cat), and drawings from observation of a skeleton specimen I brought in from home. I’m a believer in bringing to the classroom scientific and historical specimens such as ancient Greek coins, Roman sculpture, African tribal pieces, Viking relics and others.”

A reception is planned for May 14 when the public can meet Ward and the student artists. 

PixelCat group project by Dylan Gray 10th grade NCHS Art.


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