Washington column for Nov. 14

Appreciation and memories

All of us could benefit from taking the time to notice the beauty surrounding us, and this is the season to do it. I know it’s a busy time for us at our work and with the holidays around the corner — we are in a hurry, trying to get it all done. But remember to stop, if only for a few minutes each day and notice the beauty around you — your family, your children, the decorations of the seasons, all things in nature. There is beauty in all things, one just has to take the time to find it. When you do, enjoy it as a wonderful memory.

Gobble gobble

The essay winners of Joyce Wharton’s fifth-grade essay contest were (from left) Jackson Pond, first place; Lana Rudenko, second place; and Matthew Paratore and Sydney Wharton, third place.Jan Clatterbuck | Rappahannock News
The essay winners of Joyce Wharton’s fifth-grade essay contest were (from left) Jackson Pond, first place; Lana Rudenko, second place; and Matthew Paratore and Sydney Wharton, third place.

The Thanksgiving holiday’s fast approach means it was time for Joyce Wharton’s sixth annual fifth-grade essay contest last Friday (Nov. 8) at the elementary school. This year, students were assigned the task of writing a persuasive essay from the perspective of the turkey; they also created an illustration to complete their project.

Molly Bailey, the fourth-grade writing teacher who judged the essay contest, said she truly enjoyed reading all the essays. And the winners were: Sydney Wharton and Matthew Paratore, tied for third place; Lana Rudenko, second place; and Jackson Pond in first place.

Katherine Todd judged all the wonderful illustrations. The winners for the most creative illustrations were Lana Rudenko (third place), Evan Jenkins (second place) and Jackson Pond (first place).

Fifth grader Madison Fitzjohn dressed as a turkey, complete with feathers, for her presentation.Jan Clatterbuck
Fifth grader Madison Fitzjohn dressed as a turkey, complete with feathers, for her presentation.

I had the opportunity to visit class and listen to the students’ essays. They all did a fantastic job and I enjoyed listening to them. One student, Madison Fitzjohn, even dressed up like a turkey, with bright fall-color feathers. After the essays were read, refreshments were served. Some of the parents and grandmothers were there as well. Everyone seemed to have a wonderful time — I know I did. And it was another opportunity for moms and grandmothers to find memories they’ll treasure for life.

Thanksgiving service

Trinity Episcopal Church’s community Thanksgiving service is 10 a.m. Thanksgiving Day. The people and clergy of First Baptist, Promise Land Baptist, Rappahannock Methodist Charge, Reynold’s Memorial Baptist, St. Peter Catholic Church, Trinity Episcopal, Unitarian-Universalist of the Blue Ridge and Washington Baptist churches invite you to join with them in giving thanks on Thanksgiving Day.

Senior Angels arrive soon

Beginning next Friday (Nov. 22), the Senior Angel Tree returns to Rappahannock County for its fifth year. This is a wonderful opportunity for the community to show their love and support to our seniors. There are 135 senior “angels” available for adoption; each will be given a designated angel to be hung on a beautiful tree at the Union First Market Bank on U.S. 211 in Washington.

The angel is assigned a number and only discloses basic information about the senior, but also includes his or her wishlist of Christmas gift ideas. The paper angels, each representing a real-life senior, can then be chosen by community members who would like to bless a senior this holiday season. Anyone can adopt as many angels as they like. No names change hands, so it is a gift of love, later to be received by the senior assigned that angel’s number.

At the tree, there is a list where you can sign up and indicate your choices. Gifts need to be purchased, wrapped with the paper angel securely attached and returned to the bank no later than Dec. 16. Please consider adopting one or more of these precious folks — the pleasure will be all yours in giving back.

WVFR breakfast

The Washington Volunteer Fire and Rescue’s next all-you-can-eat breakfast buffet is 7 to 11 this Saturday (Nov. 16) at the fire hall. Come enjoy all your favorites, including eggs, pancakes, bacon, sausage, ham, biscuits, sausage gravy, hash browns, fried apples, coffee and orange juice — all prepared by your local volunteer fire and rescue personnel. Adults are $8 (ages 10 and younger eat free). All proceeds are used to fund daily operations. For more information, call 540-675-3615.

Sing-along

An old-fashioned sing-along benefiting the Rappahannock Food Pantry begins at 7 p.m. Nov. 22 at Trinity Episcopal Church (379 Gay Street). Hal Hunter will be at the piano and some new rousing songs have been planned. There is no charge, but a donation to the Food Pantry will be gladly accepted. Wine and cheese will be served and everyone is invited, so bring your children, your friends and yourselves and come sing on the Friday before Thanksgiving.

Birthday wishes

Birthday wishes go to a special girl, Parker Critzer, who’s celebrating her special day today (Thursday, Nov. 14); and to my sister, Judy Alther, who’s celebrating her day on Monday (Nov. 18).

Have a great week!

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