Keswick church holds annual blessing of the hounds

Hundreds gathered at Grace Episcopal Church Thursday for the 91st Annual Blessing of the Hounds.

Keswick church holds annual blessing of the hounds

CHARLOTTESVILLE, V.A. (WVIR) - Hunting hounds in Keswick got a helping hand from a higher power.

Hundreds gathered at Grace Episcopal Church Thursday, November 28, for the 91st Annual Blessing of the Hounds. The Thanksgiving tradition opens with a church service, complete with a sermon, hymns, and fellowship.

Blessing of the hounds in Keswick
Blessing of the hounds in Keswick (Source: WVIR)

Then, the church’s rector prays that the hunters on horse-back and their hounds have success in their hunt, but that the foxes they're after make it a good chase.

"The blessing of the hounds started in 1929, so it's been happening a long time, and fox hunting has been a tradition and a sport in Albemarle County since the colonial days, so it's part of our history," Miles Smith with Grace Episcopal Church said.

Donations collected at this year’s event benefit two central Virginia nonprofits: Hope’s Legacy, and Big Brothers Big Sisters of Central Blue Ridge.

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