Cultural Activities

From the stage to the gallery, from outdoor concerts to theaters, Bedford and the surrounding area offers an exciting range of outstanding cultural events. Rediscover the traditions of bluegrass, blues and country music, attend festivals with an international flair, explore the artists of the 18th and 19th centuries,  plays that draw crowds from the entire area. Bedford, just one-half hour from Roanoke and Lynchburg, opens the doors to cultural opportunities. Check out our calendar for a listing and dates of all area events.

Bedford Artisan Trail
Handcrafted and Homegrown in the Shadow of the Peaks of Otter

Creative community is abundant in Bedford County!  Potters, painters, blacksmiths, quilters, woodworkers, and a multitude of other artisans carry on traditions and explore new horizons with their craft.  Local farms tap into the creative force of the land to produce fruit, vegetables, meat, honey, fiber, herbs and flowers.  Spend some time on the Bedford Artisan Trail for a first-hand experience with these local artisans and agri-artisan farms.  In addition, you can enjoy the a world-class meal at one of many locally owned restaurants and take in the warm hospitality of a historically restored bed and breakfast.  Along the trail you will also find a treasure trove of historical and cultural sites for all ages.

Plan your Bedford Artisan Trail experience today by visiting http://www.artisanscenterofvirginia.org/artisan_trail_network/detail/bedford_county

Bedford Museum and Genealogical Library
201 East Main Street
Bedford, VA 24523
Email: bmgl@bedfordvamuseum.org
Collections that tell Bedford’s story from its earliest Native American residents through the 20th century. Popular exhibits include the Company A of the 116th Infantry, a Native American and African American exhibits. Genealogical records and other materials for research about Bedford and Virginia are here. Inquire about our research assistance for genealogists outside the Bedford area. There is no admission charge but donations are accepted. The Museum is open Monday through Saturday from 10:00 am to 5:00 pm. Christmas Eve open 10:00am to 5:00pm.  In the month of February museum is open from 10:00am to 5:00pm Monday through Friday, Open 10:00am to 3:00pm Saturday.

Bedford Community Orchestra
Email: BedfordCommOrch@hotmail.com
The Bedford Community Orchestra (BCO), founded in 1989, is a non-profit organization serving Bedford County and surrounding communities. The orchestra has two seasons per year, ending in free public concerts in the spring and fall. The orchestra is sponsored by the Bedford County Parks and Recreation Department and by the Elks National Home.
BCO’s repertoire consists of orchestral scores representing the baroque, classical, impressionistic and romantic periods as well as contemporary movie scores, jazz and pop arrangements. Concerts include full orchestra and small ensembles.

The Bedford Historical Society
315 North Bridge Street
P. O. Box 602
Bedford, VA 24523
Email: bedfordhs@aol.com

Booker T. Washington National Monument
12130 Booker T. Washington Highway
Hardy, VA 24101

Bower Center for the Arts
305 North Bridge Street
Bedford, VA 24523
Email: bowercenter@gmail.com
Concerts and on-going art exhibits draw visitors to Bower Center for the Arts throughout the year.  From Tai Chi to photography classes to piano lessons, there is always something interesting going on at the Center.  The Center hosts a monthly free Cultural Arts series and Gallery Talks by artists exhibiting at Bower.  The Center is home to a variety of arts related groups including Write Now, Chanters and Blue Ridge Needle Arts Group and new Mosaic Guild.  Others in the community use the space to hold meetings and special events.  The Center publishes a monthly newsletter which highlights cultural events in the surrounding areas.  For additional information, schedules and tickets information on regional cultural events, contact the Center.

Open Tuesday through Saturday 11:00am to 4:00pm

The Friends of the Bedford Public Library
321 North Bridge St
Bedford, VA 24523
540-586-8911 ext 4, then 1
Email: folbedfordva@qmail.com
The Bedford Friends support and promote the goals and purposes of the Bedford Central Library

  • by purchasing special items which cannot be taken care of in the Library’s budget
  • by sponsoring programs that support the Library’s mission
  • by encouraging gifts and memorials to the Friends to benefit the library
  • by encouraging public interest and support for the library
  •  by helping promote public relations and community awareness of the library 

Little Town Players
English Meadows – Elks National Home Campus Theatre
P. O. Box 437
Bedford, VA 24523
Karen C. Hopkins, President
540-586-0958 – Fax
Email: president@littletownplayers.com
Bedford’s award winning community theatre, offering a yearly Fall to Spring season of comedies, dramas and musicals with Summer Theatre camps for youth.

The National D-Day Memorial
Mailing Address: P.O. Box 77
Physicial Address: 3 Overlord Circle
Bedford, VA 24523
800-351-DDAY, 540-586-DDAY

The Sedalia Center
1108 Sedalia School Road
Big Island, VA 24526
434-299-6463 – Fax
Email: director@sedaliacenter.org
The Sedalia Center is a 501(c)(3) non-profit organization dedicated to fostering experiences in the creative process.  The Center is best known for its festivals which serve to promote, preserve, and enhance the arts and cultural heritage of the region. Nestled at the foothills of the Blue Ridge Mountains, this 17 acre facility is home to an annual BBQ & Chili Competition, Health Fair, Artisan Fair, Bluegrass and Blues music festivals, Country Fair & Gathering, and Christmas Artisan event.  The Sedalia Center is conveniently located between Roanoke, Lynchburg, Smith Mountain Lake and Lexington.  With newly renovated rooms, large kitchen, a 7,200sf covered pavilion, walking trail, recreational ball field, and riding arena, the Center is a perfect venue for a quaint meeting, large gatering or corporate function.  For information about our upcoming events, rental rates, and volunteer opportunities, visit our website at www.sedaliacenter.org or call us at 434-299-5080

Thomas Jefferson’s Poplar Forest
P.O. Box 419
Forest, VA 24551

Smith Mountain Lake
800-676-8203, 540-721-1203

1-800-732-582 1, 434-847-1811


Franklin County

Nelson County
800-282-8223, 434-263-5239

Lexington/Rockbridge County
877-453-9822, 540-463-1105

Appomattox County

877-386-1102, 434-293-6789

888-VA SALEM, 540-375-4044