Editorial: Rappahannock’s Super Bowl

Often more memorable than the athletic contest itself are the commercials that punctuate the football game on Super Bowl Sunday. The one that continues to play in many people’s minds goes something like this:

“Hey, Drew Brees (or Tom Brady or Eli Manning), now that you’ve just won the Super Bowl, what are you going to do?”
“Why, I’m going to Disney World!”

When it comes to the Super Bowl of life, what do the winners then do?

Why, they come to Rappahannock County! They could go anywhere they want — anywhere in the whole, wide world — and they choose Rappahannock County, Virginia.

Though he’s not a professional athlete, Lorin Maazel presents a timely example. As the world-acclaimed conductor and artistic director of the New York Philharmonic, he was on the very top of the musical world. And he chose Rappahannock!

More precisely place-specific, he chose Rappahannock’s Castleton — what has become the eponymous name for the grand music festival that will mark its second year this July. That’s when more than 200 of the next generation of promising artists come together at Castleton Farm for four weeks of intensive rehearsals and performances.

And the public is invited! That public, or at least its Rappahannock contingent, are lucky and blessed to have this happening in their own backyard.

Those who recognize they are so blessed buy tickets or more — becoming sponsors, for example. Says one Rappahannock native who is a founding festival sponsor: “The Maazels have a truly heartfelt appreciation for Rappahannock County. To be a festival sponsor is a way to give back to the community.”

So it is that Rappahannock shows itself once again to be more than a county — a true community. And a special community indeed — mixing big-city artistic achievement with the pastoral romance of country living.

Walter Nicklin