vol. 87 / wander

vol. 87 / wander 👣

VOL. 87   /  WANDER
Turn off the cell. Burn the map. Get lost. This week we're encouraging you to wander and ramble east on foot, bike, or boat. See ya out there! 


Low Line

Wandering east on your way out of Richmond, look for the Low Line Gardens, a linear park that transformed a neglected stretch of weeds into a bustling garden path along the Kanawha Canal. Inspired by New York City’s High Line, the Low Line is the brainchild of Capital Trees, a Richmond nonprofit that aims to create beautiful and environmentally sound public landscapes. The group relies on public-private partnerships to deliver urban green spaces that build community and improve the health and wellbeing of those who use them. Here, native plantings bring life and beauty to what had been a pocket of blight, and now attracts walkers, joggers, cyclists, pets, and children to the restored outdoor space. Underway now is phase two of the project, known as the Low Line Green, that will extend the restoration of the five-and-a-half-acre corridor between Great Shiplock Park and the floodwall at 17th Street. 

Capital Trees

Captain Ron's


Head east on Route 5 and along the riverbank you’ll find Ron Blaha, the last of the old time riverboat captains still plying the James and Appomattox Rivers. At 79, Captain Ron will dazzle you with stories about adventures on the James in a turn-of-the-century wooden tugboat, his years sailing a 41' Formosa Ketch along the East Coast, and living off the grid in the Bahamas. He’ll even sprinkle in a few side stories of sailing off the coast of Mexico, two of the Great Lakes, and the Adriatic Sea between Italy and the Czech Republic. But each tale always leads Ron back to the beautiful James River where he has lovingly rebuilt and re-furbished two houseboats at the Richmond Yacht Basin (Virginia’s oldest marina) that are for rent through Airbnb, VRBO, and Homeaway. When booking a night on one of these charming boats, you’ll also want to save time to hop over to the Lilly Pad for burgers, oysters, and beer served dockside. And before you leave in the morning, make sure to ask Ron to sign a copy of one his books so you can bring home some of his adventurous spirit with you. 


Captain Ron's Houseboat / Richmond Yacht Basin / 9950 Hoke Brady Rd.

The Original

Ronnie's BBQ

Hop on your bike, hit the Virginia Capital Trail, and simply follow your nose! You’ll soon find yourself at a small outpost at 2097 New Market Road that is home to the best Southern-style ribs in all the land. Behind the smoker, you’ll meet the father-son duo, Ronnie and Darrell Logan. These Varina natives once worked a slower cooker in a lot near Millie’s Diner that became so legendary that the pit masters opened their own permanent digs just east of town. A hotspot for outdoor enthusiasts and BBQ purists alike, The Original Ronnie’s BBQ is the perfect reward (and fuel) after exploring the Virginia Capital Trail. And don’t stop just for the ribs, make sure to try Ronnie’s fish, pulled pork, brisket, and chicken wings. Most of all though, spend a little extra time listening to Ronnie and Darrell’s stories, learn about the area, and get inspired by their family-run business before wandering back to RVA.


The Original Ronnie's BBQ   /  2097 New Market Road /  Virginia Capital Trail


Represent Richmond well in our comfy cotton t-shirt emblazoned with a hand-drawn design. Yes, that's Richmond's airport code. We consider this tee perfect attire for wandering Route 5, hitting the trail, exploring traveling the world, or simply enjoying a lazy day. Trust us — it's so super soft, you'll be wearing it everywhere.