Foamhenge: Virginia Weirdness

All five of us took a day trip to Natural Bridge, VA., over the long Memorial Day weekend. We skipped Natural Bridge, beautiful but crowded, and instead hunted down a lesser known, unsigned attraction. Foamhenge is an exact replica of the ancient and mysterious Stonehenge monument in England in all ways except two. Instead of stones, Foamhenge is made of, well, foam. It looks like the stuff in cheap picnic coolers. To see the other difference, you have to look at the pictures below.

It is one of the weirdest tourist attractions I ever have seen.

Here’s what the five members of our family thought of it:

  • Me: “I adore it.”
  • Husband: “It’s OK.”
  • Our three teen-agers: Foam with paint peeling off. Seriously?

You really have to want to find Foamhenge. No sign or parking lots mark the spot. I asked at a nearby hotel, where a nice woman at the information desk told us to drive a half mile or so and look for a white fence. Pull to the side of the road there, she said, walk through a an open space in a white fence and follow a path up a bluff.

We followed the instructions and found Foamhenge, which was built in 2004 and opened on April Fool’s Day, not some unknown time in prehistory, like the real one. I found Foamhenge, in the following order:

  • Weird
  • Free admission.
  • Nearly deserted (which I consider a plus).
  • Macabre. A death mask, if a sign is telling the truth.
  • Weird.
  • In serious need of maintenance, including paint.
  • Well worth seeing.
  • Free admission.
  • Weird.
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Foamhenge, VA

Below is the link to my Google Plus album on Foamhenge, VA., and the rests of our day trip, including a visit to a very cool antique store and flea market and the place where we ate dinner. The fried chicken was heavenly.

Foamhenge, a truly weird Virginia attraction

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For the record, I have to say I am not comfortable with the racism in this sign, but I guess you take Foamhenge as is. It adds to the weirdness. This sign is at the entrance.
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My family reading the sign above.
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Wow. It must be famous, we thought after reading this sign on a bench where you can rest on your way up the bluff. I was sorry I missed Zippy the Pinhead, though.
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We are all anxious to get our first glimpse of the famous Foamhenge.
VA Natural Bridge 2016-5-29 Foamhenge getting a good look
We get our first look at how weird Virginia tourist attractions can get. It was free, though. Did I say that already?
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Having a look around. This took me awhile. Our teenage son was done within minutes and ready to leave. He was not impressed. “Yeah, we had to come here because we will never go see the real thing,” he said sullenly. But what about Zippy? I wanted to say.
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Just like England, right?
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Merlin stands watch over Foamhenge. If a sign at the site is right, his face is basically a death mask of a friend. That’s the way I read it, anyway. HHmmm. No Merlin at Stonehenge.
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This is the sign. A joke?
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Merlin.
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Us.
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Us again.
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“I’m nuts enough to do it!” That would be funnier if the sign weren’t next to a foam Merlin wearing a death mask. I think M. Cline has the kind of warped sense of humor I appreciate. Still I look around to be sure.
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From here, Merlin looks like some kind of crazy dude conducting an orchestra.
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Beautiful scenery up here on this bluff. Almost deserted. I can hear birds, smell the wet earth that is turning my shoes red in a soft rain.
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A close look at a foam stone.
VA Natural Bridge 2016-5-29 This is the foam of Foamhenge close up
See? It looks just like the stuff cheap picnic coolers are made of.
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Our work here is done. We head back to the car on a dirt track.
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Yeah, it’s been raining a little.
VA Natural Bridge 2016-5-29 Gate to the weird
We exit the gateway to the weird.
VA Natural Bridge 2016-5-29 Finished at Foamhenge
Time to find somewhere to eat.

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9 thoughts on “Foamhenge: Virginia Weirdness”

  1. I enjoyed Foamhenge. I saw a sign and had to stop. This was a few years back. There was a family there. They’d just gotten back from England. The grandmother was English and told me that it was actually better than Stonehenge because you could actually get close to it as opposed to having to look at it from the bottom of the hill with a bunch of people pressed in around you. Her grandsons were having a great time. I regretted that I didn’t have a camera with me because I enjoy these weird little trips myself.

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      1. I hope that’s not true, but someone else told me that today, too. I did a news search before I created the post and didn’t see anything about it.

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  2. You know already how much I love this and my ideas for what you can do with it. I love the first “Us” picture where Brian is facing the camera and the kids are turned away. Did they do that deliberately or were they feeling shy at that moment? Anyway, this post (and your others) are worthy of being in National Geographic! No lie!

    Liked by 1 person

    1. LOL. The kids did not face the camera because I asked them to turn around as I was preparing to take the picture. They did, but in the wrong direction. They found this very funny, of course. 🙂

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