Life in the Ivy
I first connected with Mary Garner, the publisher, when we worked together on a different project where I wrote an article featuring business women and Mary promoted ad space. When she tapped me to work on this series of articles, I was elated. Ivy Hill is a longstanding community with a fascinating place in Central Virginia History.
For this interview, I met Nan Perdue in her home, discussed her journey, and snapped photos for the spread. Each of these Ivy Hill profiles that I’ve put together have unearthed amusing local anecdotes.
Meet Your Neighbor: Nan Perdue
Originally published at Life in the Ivy
Nan Perdue will never stay inside on a sunny day. Her love of the great outdoors is part of why she and her late husband moved into Ivy Hills. They saw the rolling greens and knew they found a home. Her residence was the first house occupied in 1973 and since 1985, her family has made their fair share of Ivy Hill history.
Finding a Home in Ivy Hills
Nan grew up in Franklin County, VA where there were no nearby golf courses. After Nan and her husband married, they were stationed at Camp Lejeune, which offered free golf for military members and their families. Nan laughs, “We picked up clubs and knew nothing about it. But we got hooked fast.”
Later, a job transfer brought them to Forest, Virginia. In 1985, they moved onto Hitching Post Lane.
“We loved it here,” Nan recalls. “We had a good time together until my husband died of cancer in 1990. He didn’t get to enjoy our home long but, he had a good life here.”
As you look around Nan’s home, you see her hints of her active lifestyle. Golf mementos, awards, and memorabilia draw your eye, as does the tee right outside her back door. She even has a large wooden bowl on her dining room table filled with golf balls that her husband collected.
“When my husband passed, he told me to just enjoy life. And I have! I’ve been blessed with the children surrounding me. And I watched five grandchildren grow up,” Nan recalls of her time in the community.
Notably, she was the Ivy Hill Golf Club Ladies Club Champion from 1985-1992. At the time, she was an 8 handicap although, she’ll tell you it’s gone up a bit in recent years.
Taking Her Shot
When Nan was 65, Tracy Newman, the Head Golf Professional at Ivy Hill, asked if she would like to help at the course. Since then, she’s assisted with event-related tasks such as, washing carts, collecting scorecards, and setting up the clubs during tournaments. Today, Nan helps during some events and she gets out on the course as much as possible.
“When I first moved here, I walked the course. Now, I’m more tired just riding the golf course for 18 holes than when I used to walk 18. But, I turned 85. So, I guess I can understand that,” Nan says with a smile.
Each week from March through October, Nan enjoys golfing with the Thursday ladies group. They rotate pairs to socialize with everyone.
Nan also plays bridge with that same competitive edge. A group of ladies, including her friend Marie Winks, meets on Trading Block Lane to play.
“I’ve been fortunate to have a friend with so much in common,” Nan says.
Home for the Holiday
During this holiday season, Nan has enjoyed hosting her family. In total, Nan has three daughters, five grandchildren, and seven great-grandchildren.
“Two out of three of my daughters moved back here. Barbara and John live on Trading Block Lane. Julie and Billy live on Hitching Post Lane. Our third daughter lives in Roanoke, but they bought the vacant lot on Hitching Post. So, they are connected to us too,” Nan explains.
That makes four generations living together in Ivy Hills.
This Thanksgiving, the whole family came together to celebrate. As part of their visit, her offspring unpack the Christmas tree and help Nan decorate each year. Then, at Christmas, they help her pack everything back up. She likes to watch them pull out the decorations and talk about holiday memories.
Always on the Green
“I’ve always been the type that enjoyed it outside. I was raised on a farm. I loved driving the tractor and working in the hayfields,” says Nan. Even now, she cuts her own grass using a riding mower.
If you see her outside, Nan is a wealth of knowledge about the community. She can help you find a reputable plumber or a handyman. She’ll invite you to her church, Mountain View United Methodist, if you’re looking for a place of worship. Also, Nan likes meeting new arrivals with welcome gifts.
To her, it’s part of being a good neighbor. She feels like she can call on any of her neighbors and she hopes they’ll reach out to her if they need help.
As Nan reflects on her time raising a family in Ivy Hill, she says, “We enjoy living here and God has been good to us. We’re so blessed to be able to live in such a beautiful place.”