Sperryville: Virginia Web site features village

One of the 66 photos of Sperryville on the film.virginia.org Web site.

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 www.film.virginia.org, 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.

Tourism and Film is one of nine subgroups of the Governor’s Commission on Economic Development and Jobs Creation. Chaired by Bruce Thompson, chief executive officer of Gold Key/PHR Resorts and Hotels, the tourism subgroup is exploring innovative ways to boost Virginia’s tourism, support filmmaking in the state and marketing efforts. The sub-group’s report will be released this fall.

A new state tax credit already in effect is designed to spur the production of television and film and documentaries and bring new business to Virginia while also supporting those already working in the state’s media production industry.

Why do we care about this? Filmmakers come to town, spend their money and then leave us just as we were before their arrival. They provide a source of income for our county, without burdening county services and it also promotes Rappahannock as a destination.
The County Office of Tourism deserves thanks for working with the state film office to send staff to photograph Rappahannock County and have their work included in their listing of film locations.

What can viewers already see on programming that’s produced in Virginia? Virginia Living Television, owned by Nina May of Rappahannock County, is located in Culpeper and broadcasts on Comcast Channels 16 and 17 (its Web site is www.valivingtv.com). Among its many offerings is coverage of fall’s Artists Studio and Gallery Tour with interviews with Jeanne Drevas and Martin Woodard.

May is also writer, producer and director of a movie “Life Fine Tuned.” Filming has taken place at Eldon Farms, and there will be filming in the town of Washington, at a church in Gid Brown Hollow, at Castleton Farms and at area vineyards and farms. An entire scene will be shot at Wasmund’s Distillery.

The Web site LifeFineTuned.org is up and running and gives an overview of the film. The film will feature people who live in Rappahannock, such as Dietlinde Maazel, and several musicians from the area.

Get well wishes

There is one talented Sperryville woman who can transform simple weeds, leaves and flowers into a most elegant floral display. Only surgery could keep Eve Willis down. We hope she makes a speedy recovery from her recent back surgery. 

Bridge over Thornton waters

About 3,500 vehicles cross the bridge (built in 1929) over the Thornton River on U.S. 522 at U.S. 211. Projected daily traffic volume is expected to increase to 5,100 vehicles per day by 2030. The design of a replacement bridge has been approved and right-of-way acquisition and utility relocation will begin in 2011 with bridge construction to begin in the spring of 2012. The plan is to close the bridge for three months, detour all trucks away from Sperryville and route local traffic onto Water Street.

We will all need to be very cautious because of the one- lane bridge on Water Street, but this will give excellent visibility for three months to Copper Fox Antiques, Wasmund’s Distillery and the Rappahannock Food Coop and Artisan Gallery. And won’t it be wonderful to not have large trucks in Sperryville?

Our supervisor Mike Biniek and County Administrator John McCarthy are working with the Virginia Department of Transportation on the speed limit in our village. A speed study has been completed and supports a reduction to 25 miles per hour from the current 35 mph limit as you approach the village from the south. It has been forwarded to the VDOT district office for sign-off. We hope to have confirmation of the speed reduction in August. Let’s hope for a positive outcome.

Blue Rock review

I hope you read the review of the Blue Rock Inn by Tom Sietsema in the Washington Post Magazine on Sunday. It was terrific! In a two-page review of food, decor and future plans he found pleasure in all aspects of his dining experience and visit. Congratulations to the Hawa family, the chefs and staff for their success and for adding another fine dining choice to Rappahannock residents and visitors.