The Palisades Restaurant Owner Receives Restaurateur of the Year Award, 2019

Shaena Muldoon receives Jim Wordsworth Award- Restaurateur of the Year

three people at awards ceremony on stage

Barry Biggar, Ordinary Awards Co-Chair, Shaena Muldoon, Restaurateur of the Year, Debbie Donehey, Ordinary Awards Co-Chair the night of the awards.


VRLTA Announces 17 Honorees at 4th Annual Dinner at The Hilton Richmond Hotel & Spa | Short Pump Richmond, Va


The Virginia Restaurant, Lodging & Travel Association (VRLTA) is pleased to announce the winners of the 2019 VRLTA Ordinary Awards. Recipients were honored at a special dinner at The Hilton Richmond Hotel & Spa | Short Pump on October 10, 2019 in Richmond, Virginia. The winners were announced in front of an audience of more than 240 hospitality and travel industry peers and leaders from across the state. This was VRLTA’s fourth consecutive year hosting the Ordinary Awards, which were sponsored by Kings Dominion, Virginia Business, UnitedHealth Group, E&J Gallo Winery, Virginia Lottery, Visit Fairfax, Tablee, and Queen of Virginia Skill & Entertainment.


Why call them ordinary? Chinn’s Ordinary, considered “the oldest original inn in America,” was built around 1728 in Chinn’s Crossroads, now Middleburg, Virginia. The building was uniquely situated half-way between Alexandria and Winchester, Virginia, making it an ideal location for an inn and tavern catering to travelers. Throughout the years, Chinn’s Ordinary has undergone significant renovations and name changes. Sometime between 1810 and 1830 it was remodeled and renamed the Beveridge House. Later, around 1890 it became the Middleburg Inn. Known as “America’s oldest continuously running inn,” since 1937 it has operated as the Red Fox Inn & Tavern.


So, why Ordinary? Well, on one hand, it simply fits. This history of Chinn’s Ordinary speaks to all facets of VRLTA’s membership—restaurants, lodging, and travel. And, on the other hand, the term ordinary is just the opposite of the hospitality and travel industry. Our industry truly is anything but ordinary, and this juxtaposition is almost too good to pass up. The true goal of the Awards, is to honor those in our industry, be they individuals or companies that are truly extraordinary.


Shaena Muldoon was nominated among 130 businesses, individuals, and attractions. On October 10, 2019 she was named Restaurateur of the Year. Giles County, Virginia is so excited to welcome this award home for The Palisades Restaurant! Friends and neighbors gathered at The Palisades on Wednesday, October 23 for a homecoming celebration to honor Shaena and the VRLTA Jim Wordsworth Award for Restaurateur of the Year coming to Giles this year.



“Each year, Ordinary Awards winners represent all the extraordinary people and companies that make up Virginia’s hospitality and tourism industry, and this year, our record number of nominations raised the bar even higher,” said Eric Terry, President of VRLTA. “On behalf of the Association, our staff, and board, we applaud the efforts of our nominees, finalists, and winners for the exemplary work they have done and will continue to do.”


For more information about VRLTA’s Ordinary Awards, visit or


About the Virginia Restaurant, Lodging & Travel Association (VRLTA)

The Virginia Restaurant, Lodging & Travel Association is the only unified voice for the restaurant, lodging, travel and hospitality suppliers associations. VRLTA creates value for members by promoting the legislative interests of the industry, networking, educational opportunities, and protecting free enterprise. Inquiries about membership and VRLTA services should be directed to VRLTA at (804) 288-3065 or




Giles County, Virginia is located in Southwest Virginia approximately 40 minutes south of Roanoke and just west of Blacksburg and Virginia Tech. With easy access to the New River, world class dining and lodging properties, and historical attractions for the entire family, Giles offers adventure in Virginia’s Mountain Playground™. Come find your playground at our Visitors Center located at 203 N Main Street, Pearisburg, VA 24134 or find us online at or by calling 540-921-2079.

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