even Cumberland Gap is well within the boundaries of he Eastern Time Zone
Source: US Geological Survey (USGS), National Map - Standard Time Zones
Each time zone covers roughly 15°'s of longitude. After the International Meridian Conference in 1884, the United States defined the "prime meridian" for longitude and timekeeping based on the location of the Greenwich Observatory. Greenwich Mean Time (Zulu time) served as the basis for "standard time" in Virginia until the switch in 1972 to Coordinated Universal Time based on atomic clocks.1
The state follows Daylight Savings Time as established in the Uniform Time Act of 1966. The US Department of Transportation determines when Virginians will set their clocks to "spring forward" and "fall back" to maximize the hours of daylight in the summer when people are active.
Some people, including construction workers and farmers, set their work schedules to start at daylight or end at dusk. Those workers may be the most aware that the sun is located at a different place of the sky at any time of the day in eastern vs. western Virginia.
The width of Virginia is reflected by the difference in longitude. The longitude at the eastern edge of Assateague Island on the northeastern corner of Virginia is -75.2861889°, while the longitude at Cumberland Gap is -83.6756599°.2
Because of that difference, on the longest day of the year the sun shines on the eastern edge of Virginia about 37 minutes earlier than on the western tip. On June 21, 2018, sunrise was at 5:39am Eastern Daylight Time at Chincoteague. At Cumberland Gap, it was still dark for more than another half-hour. The clock showed 6:16am whe the sunrise finally occurred at the southwestern tip of Virginia.3
The time of sunrise and sunset is significant for the state hunting regulations, established by the Virginia Department of Game and Inland Fisheries. For nonmigratory birds and game animals, hunting is illegal if it starts earlier than one-half hour before sunrise. For most species, hunting must end by one-half hour after sunset.
However, the authorized hours for some activities are set by the clock rather than the sun. Bear hound training is allowed from 4:00am to 10:00pm daily, and raccoons may be hunted until 2:00am on Sundays.
Bobcats, foxes, raccoons, and opossums are not protected for any fixed time period. The state allows hunting those four species 24 hours/day during hunting season.4
To make compliance (and enforcement) easier, the state publishes a table of sunrise/sunset times. The chart uses Richmond as the reference location.
As defined in the hunting regulations, Williamsburg and Winchester are equally distant from the meridian of longitude that runs through Richmond. In Williamsburg, sunrise is 3 minutes earlier than in Richmond. In Winchester, it is three minutes later. Chincoteague and Danville are also equidistant. The sun rises at Chincoteague eight minutes earlier than in Richmond, while sunrise at Danville is eight minutes later.
The greatest range identified in the state chart is between Cape Charles and Bristol. Sunrise at Cape Charles is 25 minutes earlier than sunrise in Bristol.5
according to the hunting regulations, the sun rises in Richmond 8 minutes later than in Virginia Beach, and 8 minutes earlier than in Danville
Source: ESRI, ArcGIS Online
The difference in latitude is reflected in day length. On December 21, sunlight in Danville will last for 9 hours and 40 minutes. That will be 15 minutes longer than the sunlight on that day further north in Winchester. Danville is at 36.5859718 N decimal degrees, while Winchester is located on the globe at 39.1856597 N decimal degrees.6
Arlington County has created time-based sculptures at Dark Star Park:6
shadows from two spheres at Dark Star Park align precisely within the sculpture one day each year
Source: Arlington County, Dark Star Park Day (9:30am, August 1, 2017)
1. "Why Do We Have Time Zones?," timeanddate.com, https://www.timeanddate.com/time/time-zones-history.html (last checked June 22, 2018)
2. Tri-State Peak, Google Maps, https://www.google.com/maps/place/KY-TN-VA+Tri+State+Pointfirstname.lastname@example.org,-83.6756599,571m/data=!3m1!1e3!4m5!3m4!1s0x885c8358f78b7869:0x9ef14d0be9b69aff!8m2!3d36.6008155!4d-83.6754182; Assateague Island, Google Maps, https://email@example.com,-75.271777,13z (last checked June 22, 2018)
3. Chincoteague, Virginia, USA - Sunrise, Sunset, and Daylength, June 2018, timeanddate.com, https://www.timeanddate.com/sun/usa/chincoteague; "Cumberland Gap National Historical Park, Virginia, USA - Sunrise, Sunset, and Daylength, June 2018," https://www.timeanddate.com/sun/@4289248 (last checked June 22, 2018)
4. "General Information & Hunting Regulations," Virginia Department of Game and Inland Fisheries, https://www.dgif.virginia.gov/hunting/regulations/general/#hunting-hours (last checked June 22, 2018)
5. "Sunrise and Sunset Timetable - Richmond, Virginia," Virginia Department of Game and Inland Fisheries, https://www.dgif.virginia.gov/wp-content/uploads/sunrisesunset.pdf(last checked June 22, 2018)
6. "Sunrise and sunset times in Winchester, Winchester City, Virginia, USA," SunriseSunset, https://sunrise-sunset.org/search?location=Winchester+va; "Sunrise and sunset times in Danville City, Virginia, USA," SunriseSunset, https://sunrise-sunset.org/search?location=danville+va; "City of Danville, VA," Lat-Long.com, http://www.lat-long.com/Latitude-Longitude-1498421-Virginia-City_of_Danville.html; "Winchester, VA," Lat-Long.com, http://www.lat-long.com/Latitude-Longitude-1498552-Virginia-Winchester.html (last checked December 14, 2019)