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Hazel River vote is delayed

Before delaying for a month its vote on designating a stretch of the Hazel River as a State Scenic River, the county Board of Supervisors heard some unusual testimony from a Culpeper County landowner last […]


The Rapp for July 15

Top basketmakers at the Culpeper-Madison-Rappahannock Farm Show; more work (and more play for you) at the Castleton Festival; local 12-and-under team heads to the state baseball tournament; and more. […]


Castleton: The shows go on, with locals’ help

Pulling off a music series like the 2010 Castleton Festival takes the work of a lot of helping hands both behind the scenes and in front.
The music festival is in its second year. It features performances by a 200-member company of young artists under the guidance of conductor Lorin Maazel. This year’s festival includes performances of works by Puccini, Britten and Stravinski, among others. […]

Fire and Rescue

Total loss

The damage is clear in this photo of one of the rear rooms of the house on Woodward Road in Sperryville that was destroyed in a fire early Saturday. The 100-year-old frame house belongs to longtime Rappahannock restaurant and market owner Rae Gaedke, who is in Florida looking after her mother. […]

School/Education News

Higher, sooner education

Fourteen-year-old Skyler Owens is taking a great leap forward by skipping the last two years of high school to enroll at Mary Baldwin College in Staunton this fall.

By forgoing the pomp and circumstance of receiving a high school diploma to start college early, she could be getting a bachelor’s degree at an age when others are just starting college. […]


Ash to Ash . . .

It might sound like a B-grade horror movie, with a title like “Killer Baby Bug Eats Victims Alive.” But it’s a true tale, and it’s unfolding now in Northern Virginia.

The insect’s prey is not human, but ash trees. The “killer” is the emerald ash borer, which is smaller than a penny and, as its name indicates, is metallic green. This beetle has killed tens of millions of trees in the United States and Canada since its initial discovery in 2002. […]


Sperryville: Virginia Web site features village

We all delight in the tranquility and scenic beauty of Sperryville and Rappahannock County. Now those assets are well represented on the state film marketing Web site. Check out, then search for Sperryville and you will find 66 photos taken in and around our little village. If you search for Rappahannock County you will see other wonderful locations, including many farms and inns. […]

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Opinion Column

Drowned by the tide of ‘progress’

I remember a time when most of America looked like Rappahannock County. Oh, there were differences of course — the kind that come with regions, climate and architectural influences — but what was similar was the quality of rural life, small towns and the human scale of Main Street USA. Since that time significant economic and demographic changes have altered the landscape: the explosive growth of suburbs and the encroachment of exurbia creating mega-cities with their insatiable appetite for consuming farmland and open-space. As early as the 1960s parents were taking their children to make-believe main streets at Disneyland or Disneyworld, to rediscover the main streets they remembered from their own youth and which were disappearing with every passing day. […]

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Letters to the Editor

Letter: Potential denied

Walter Nicklin, publisher of the Rappahannock News, poses the following questions in his editorial [Happy 234th?, July 8]: “How could it possibly have happened that such sparsely populated 13 colonies 234 years ago could produce […]


Out of the attic

The “Sunbeam Band,” as they called themselves, posed for this picture in October 1952 at the Luannah Smith residence in Sperryville. They are, front row, from left, Jackie Brown, “Bucky” Fletcher, Doris Ann Dodson, Michael Brown; second row, Louise Fletcher, Cathy Fletcher, Charles Dodson, Lee Thorton, Joe Brown; and, back row, Janice Lee Dodson, Nancy Brown, Launnah Smith, Carolyn Brown, Joann Fox and Danny Clater. […]

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Down Memory Lane

Down Memory Lane

50 years ago July 14, 1960 Miss Becky Jones, daughter of Mr. and Mrs. E. M. Jones of Washington, accepted a position with a meal and flour company and left Sunday for Chicago, where she […]


Head Lion

At the Rappahannock Lions annual picnic July 9, senior Lion Bob Anderson, right, congratulates R.C. Garcia as the organization’s incoming president, taking over from Steve Miller, left. Some 55 Lions and their spouses attended the picnic and installation ceremony for the new president, who’ll serve a 2010-2011 term. […]

Health and Healthcare

Summer sunlight scorches skin

Basking on the beach.
Toiling in the noonday sun.
Covering our eyes from the glare.
Showing off our bronzed arms and legs.
Ah, summertime and those languid sun-drenched afternoons. Soaking in the sun to the point of being burning hot is not only uncomfortable but potentially lethal. […]


RAWL Dogs: Peanut

Peanut is my name, but that is merely a cover, a “nom de shelter.” Inside me, deep in my soul, I am “Lion.” I am so ferocious, so thoroughly in command, that the captain of […]


Rapp Facts

Did you know that . . . The building that the county uses as its jail was completed as part of the courthouse complex about 1835. But it is just one of three places that have served as jails over the years. In colonial days, the house at the northeast corner of Main and Calvert streets in Washington served as a lockup. After the Civil War, a third jail — on the Miller farm in the F.T. Valley — housed prisoners destined for court and/or incarceration in the county seat. Shown here, it was the home of Rappahannock Court Justice George Sisk at the time but is now owned by Bill Fletcher.

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Meetings and Notices

Meetings and notices

On Wednesday, July 21 the Rappahannock County Planning Commission will meet at 7:30 p. m. at the county courthouse on Gay Street. Highlights on the agenda: Healy Tourist Home; Smith & Moon Country Inn; Smithsonian […]