Sperryville column for Jan. 27

Closed but not forgotten

You may wonder why Dexter Lake Club Antiques on Main Street had its “shut” sign out all month. What was going on? A total redo! Scraping, painting, patching, caulking, and all those other things needed to maintain a wonderful old building. After a year of wear and tear of constantly re-hanging new pictures and mirrors and furniture arriving and departing, it was time to freshen up. Watch for the grand reopening within the next week or two (we hope!) There a lot of pieces to hang back up on walls, rugs to put on the floors and furniture to reposition first. When you see the “open” sign, do stop by to see owner Jimmy Williams and store manager Donna Kevis and admire the fix-up work and of course, the antiques.

Not closed or forgotten

Do stop by the Copper Fox Antiques at 7 River Lane off Water Street. It has a new look, too. The back room has been reorganized and the front rooms are now more open and easier to navigate. Stop by to peruse the old tools, chairs and brass beds.

A familiar face at TRG

If you see someone serving breakfast and lunch on Tuesdays at Thornton River Grille who looks familiar but out of context, it is our one and only Wendy Sirat, known for her performances with Mandalele. She’s having a fun winter in her job at TRG visiting with friends and catching up with people she hadn’t seen in ages. Be sure to stop by to say hello (and have breakfast or lunch, of course).

Beverly Samuels, owner of the F.T. Valley Store, receives the loan of a mounted buck head from Mary O'Kane, here with her father Joe O'Kane. Photo by E. Raymond Boc.

The deer is back

When Mary O’Kane was little, she would go into the F.T. Valley Grocery and pet the deer’s head on the wall. Every time her family would come to Sperryville they would have to stop at the store and say hello and pet the deer. This went on for years, until one day it vanished.

Mary, now 10, has missed her stuffed friend and found a very handsome fellow on eBay to replace the original and she’s loaning it to the store.

On Sunday, Mary’s dad, Joe O’Kane, store owner John Burner and Ray Ludwig removed the notice board that covered the original location of the deer’s head and put up the replacement. Ray Boc took photos and offered words of encouragement. The recently checked-in deer is magnificent in his old spot in the old store. Beverly Samuels and John Burner thanked Mary for the loan of her furry friend and she and her dad thanked everyone for such a fine and memorable time.

A never-ending birthday

Most of you know our own Cheri Woodard — businesswoman extraordinaire, chairperson of Taste of Rappahannock for 11-plus years, a person always there to help anyone who needs it. But did you know that she celebrates her birthday (Jan. 16) for an entire month? What a fun way to celebrate with her family. Sisters from Boulder, Colo., and Washington, D.C. come to visit and of course she sees that special person, her 91-year-old mother, Ruth, who lives in Bethesda. If you see Cheri before the end of the month, do wish her a happy January birthday.

A special walk

In honor of Sperryville’s own James Russell, more than 30 of his friends and family celebrated his life with a “second line” procession down Main Street Saturday afternoon. It is called the “second line” because it’s the group that follows the band (the first line) in a funeral procession like those seen in New Orleans.

Cold did not keep this group from honoring such a special person. Led by his son, Mike, who carried a favorite photograph of his father and a flag in honor of his military service, the group marched and danced to music, voices raised in song, carrying candles and waving parasols and hankies, ending at the Link where even more people gathered for a potluck dinner and evening of music. He will be missed by all, but remembered in everyone’s hearts.