BayShore Beach Experience A to Z

Living Local

HAMPTON, Va. (WAVY) – This weekend, the Hampton History Museum will take a dive back in time to celebrate BayShore Beach, a once premier seaside resort adjacent to Buckroe Beach in Hampton. It was a popular vacation destination for African Americans during the Jim Crow Era.

Richmond native Reginald Robinson recalls taking trips to BayShore as a young boy.

“I used to come to BayShore when I was a child when my mom used to bring me. Then when I became older, she would share stories with my wife and I about when her family used to come down here,” said Robinson.

By the 1970’s BayShore Beach ceased to exist and the soon became distant memory to those living in Hampton Roads. Six years ago, Reginald decided to bring those memories back to life and host an annual event to pay tribute to the beloved ocean paradise.

“BayShore Beach Experience A to Z” is a two-part event. First, guests can enjoy a special exhibit on display at the Hampton History Museum.

“We have hundreds of photographs and we have original BayShore Beach documents. We have documents from Mr. Charles H. Williams who ran the hotel for almost 40 years, and we also have a guitar from Hampton legend Chuck “Guitar” Chavis, who performed frequently at the hotel,” Robinson added.

Then on Saturday night, guests can join Robinson and colleague Judy Leonard as they take a stroll down memory lane.

“This year we’re covering years 1898, when the hotel opened, to 1918. We’re going to focus on those 20 years. Our guest speaker for this year will be Dr. Colita Fairfax. In addition, we’re also honoring Dr. Christine Darden with the Charles H. Williams Award. We’re also going to have the BayShore at Buckroe Beach Hall of Fame,” said Robinson.

The BayShore Beach Experience exhibit is on display from Friday, September 18 to Saturday, September 19th at the Hampton History Museum from 9 a.m.- 4 p.m. Admission is free and open to the public. All guests are required to wear masks and follow the social distancing floor markers.

The Facebook Live is Saturday, September 19 from 6-8 p.m. on the Hampton History Museum Facebook Page.


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