Washington column for Sept. 20

Beautiful fall weather

Last Saturday was the ideal fall day to get out and enjoy events going on in the county. Little Washington was hopping: The cool weather brought many charity bike riders out for the Rappahannock Rough Ride – a fundraiser for the Fauquier and Rappahannock Free Clinics. One could not have asked for a more perfect day for a ride through the hills of Rappahannock County.

Racers in the annual Rappahannock Rough Ride take off from the starting line at the Washington fire hall Saturday. Photo by Jan Clatterbuck.
Racers in the annual Rappahannock Rough Ride take off from the starting line at the Washington fire hall Saturday. Photo by Jan Clatterbuck.

Riders started out at the Washington fire hall with multiple route options ranging from a family-friendly 12-mile loop to the full 63-mile route. This year, there was a bridge out on Richmond Road, which forced a detour and added four miles to the usual route.

Breakfast was available at the fire hall and hot lunches were served until mid-afternoon. All proceeds from meals supported the Washington Volunteer Fire and Rescue department. A little birdie told me that one of the WVFR volunteers (Hope Huff) worked all day at the event, then had to head to work at Fauquier Hospital for the overnight shift. Medic Ann Spieker was seen painting the fire hydrant on Harris Hollow Road on Sunday. What dedicated people! Many thanks to all the volunteers for their hard work. If it wasn’t for you, we would not have a Washington Volunteer Fire Department.

Students from Cambridge University in England pose during setup for their two  performances last weekend of “Antony and Cleopatra” at the Theatre at Washington. Photo by Jan Clatterbuck.
Students from Cambridge University in England pose during setup for their two performances last weekend of “Antony and Cleopatra” at the Theatre at Washington. Photo by Jan Clatterbuck.

The Theatre at Washington was busy Saturday afternoon getting ready for its performance of William Shakespeare’s “Antony and Cleopatra” that night by students from Cambridge University in England, with a matinee offered Sunday afternoon.

Civil War heritage

Be sure to take time on Saturday, Sept. 29, to learn about the history of the county during the Civil War on the grounds of the Rappahannock County Visitors Center, 3 Library Road, Washington. From 9 to 5, the Rappahannock Civil War Heritage Day commemorates the war’s impact in Rappahannock County, a major thoroughfare for Union and Confederate forces as part of the territory known as Mosby’s Confederacy. Guest speakers include filmmaker Ron Maxwell and Civil War expert Art Candenquist, as well as “Col. John S. Mosby” and other period guests. There will be living history, reenactments on the historic encampment site of Gen. Pope’s Army of Virginia, skirmishes, artillery demonstrations, infantry firing demonstrations, music by Shenandoah Valley Minstrels and South Fork and dancing by Tom and Lesley Mack. Heritage Day is sponsored and organized by the Rappahannock County Sesquicentennial Committee. For more information, call 540-675-3153.

First gallery show

R.H. Ballard Art, Rug & Home’s first gallery show of the season, “Landscapes & Light,” features plein air painter and Virginia artist Meg Walsh, who creates beautiful landscape paintings. The opening reception is 4:30 to 7 this Saturday (Sept. 22), with wines from Gray Ghost Vineyards and food by Tula’s Off Main, the new cafe in town (which will be opening in several weeks). Ballard’s also has many new items in the shop for the fall season. Stop in and check it out. The gallery is on lower level at 307 Main St. Both floors are open 10 to 6 daily. For more information, call 540-675-1411.

Russian Folk Orchestra nearby

For those who enjoyed their numerous performances at the Theatre at Washington, the Washington Balalaika Society Orchestra has a nearby concert this month in Charlottesville at 3 p.m. Sunday, Sept. 30 at Piedmont Virginia Community College’s Dickinson Proscenium Theater. The orchestra is a community-based ensemble dedicated to studying, preserving and performing the rich musical heritage of Russia and Eastern Europe on authentic traditional folk instruments. For tickets or information, call the theater box office at 434-961-5376, or visit pvcc.edu/performingarts.

Don’t forget

In your daily prayers, remember Willie McFarland of Washington. Mr. McFarland has been under the weather.

Have a great week.

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