By Laura Overstreet
Special to the Rappahannock News
Plans are under way for Headwaters Foundation’s 13th annual Taste of Rappahannock fundraiser on Sept. 11 that will feature an auction and entertainment.
The event kicks off at 6 p.m. at Belle Meade School in Sperryville.
“We’ve hired Red Apple Auctions of Alexandria to help us with both the silent and live auctions, and they have some great new ideas that we are implementing,” said Toni Egger, Headwaters executive director.
Close to 50 one-of-a-kind items will be auctioned. Already on the bidding list are a week at Le Silence, a charming, five-bedroom farmhouse in the scenic countryside of Burgundy, France; a trip to Cancun; and a theater weekend in Washington, D.C.
Guests may also bid on a helicopter ride to and from a gourmet picnic; a cooking workshop and dinner with well-known chef and writer Hi Soo Hepinstall; a behind-the-scenes tour and tasting at Copper Fox Distillery; original art from a number of Rappahannock County’s most accomplished artists, and much more.
Students will be involved in every aspect of the evening from greeting and chatting with guests to serving appetizers and helping to prepare and serve a wide selection of dishes of locally sourced foods. A musical ensemble from Rappahannock High School will provide live music. During the formal dinner program, one student will share how his experience with Headwaters has made a difference in his life.
Funds raised during the annual Taste of Rappahannock are crucial to underwriting the enrichment programs offered to students by Headwaters throughout the year. This year’s “Challenge” will, in fact, be a challenge – thanks to generous donations by Rappahannock resident Mitzi Young and the late Took Crowell. High-level challenge donors will be honored with a champagne reception.
The funds raised this year are more important than ever, as Headwaters looks to expand its outreach efforts. In addition to supporting its Farm-to-Table, Starfish Mentoring and Next Step, Teacher Mini-Grants and Complementary Staff Development efforts, funds are needed to develop new programs.
“Rappahannock County has a new school administration with new ideas and programs they will want to launch. We want to be ready and able to help,” Egger said. “We would like to create an opportunity fund so that we can respond to developing needs and ideas for programs at all levels of school.”
In the planning stage is an after-school program for elementary school children. Egger said that a survey will be sent in August to children and their parents. “We want to learn from the parents and students what they would like to see in an after-school program before we build it and will incorporate their thoughts and suggestions,” Egger said. “We hope to start such a program in January.” She credits Headwaters volunteer Philip Strange for outlining a proposal for the effort.
Demand for tickets this year is expected to be greater than ever, in part because of advertising support in Flavor magazine that reaches some 50,000 people throughout National Capital region, including DC, Maryland, Northern and Central Virginia. Details of this year’s Taste are online at Headwaters Foundation’s Web site, headwatersfdn.org.
Event Co-Chairs Cheri Woodard, Terri Lehman and Ashleigh Cannon Sharp said that invitations to the 13th annual Taste of Rappahannock will be in the mail in early August. Tickets are $150 for individuals; patron tables of 10 are $2,000. Sponsored tables are $1,200 and include two tickets to the event.
Those persons not on the mailing list who would like tickets can send their name and address by email to Toni Egger at firstname.lastname@example.org or call her at 540-987-3322.