I regularly paddle the Staunton River from Long Island to Brookneal. This is a great beginner run and sounds like it is in your neighborhood.The James River has many great sections above Lynchburg (my neighborhood). Both rivers are dam release, so we have enough water all the time, even in droughts. I am a Coastals member and we have trips going out in central Virginia nearly every week.
PFD's (Life Jackets)
Touring Kayak Paddles