Washington column for June 14

Fifth-graders focus on visitors

Fifth-graders Bryce Jones, Josh Sabol and Nick Hale look over the brochures they helped create for the Visitors Center.
Courtesy photo
Fifth-graders Bryce Jones, Josh Sabol and Nick Hale look over the brochures they helped create for the Visitors Center.

Rappahannock County Elementary School students are developing their 21st-century skills, which include analyzing, critical thinking, collaboration, technology training and problem-finding. Teacher Lilo Wolfe reports that this last item doesn’t seem to be very difficult, “but finding a problem that we can help with and solve is sometimes a challenge.” Fifth-graders Wyneth Thompson, Nick Hale, Josh Sabol and Bryce Jones took a field trip to the visitor center in early May “with the mission of finding a problem we could work on and do something about before the school year ended,” Wolfe said. “Sometimes we came up with an appropriate idea, but with further discussion we realized there was going to be a problem if visitors started looking for the ‘old swimming hole.’

Wyneth Thompson
Courtesy photo
Wyneth Thompson gives the thumbs up to the finished product.

“Using the Water Supply Plan for Rappahannock County and the Town of Washington allowed us to find a map that could provide visitors with a clear picture of our rivers,” Wolfe said. “This was an easy solution to the first problem we found when interviewing Ms. Sandra Maskas, the manager at the center. Thanks to Culpeper Soil and Water for providing that on their website. We also found some guidelines for people who wanted to fish and wade in our rivers on the National Rivers website about river law.”

Wolfe says the students created two brochures for the Visitors Center, one on the Rivers of Rappahannock and the other about Cool Spots for Kids. The four students, who worked on the project with Wolfe, the school system’s gifted education specialist, also went back to their classmates to get feedback about things they enjoy about our county.

“It is very rewarding to listen to a classroom of students sharing about the many things they appreciate about where we live,” Wolfe said.

A job well done. To see the brochures for yourself, make your own field trip to the Visitors Center.

Gene Leggett

The community was saddened to hear that Eugene “Gene” Sheldon Leggett II, former town mayor, Washington Volunteer Fire and Rescue president and Rappahannock County Water & Sewer Authority chairman, died on Friday (June 8) at Fauquier Hospital in Warrenton, after a long illness. (See the Appreciation on page 1.)

Along the way we make a lot of friends throughout our lives. But only a few ever become close to us. Some we lose touch with, while others take up different paths in their lives. Everyone leaves footprints in our memory, but the ones that leave footprints in our hearts are the ones we will truly remember.

We can always remember the treasured happy memories from times of laughter, times of happiness and times of such fun being around Gene Leggett. He will be missed deeply.

His legacy will live on.

A funeral service will be held on Tuesday, June 19 at Trinity Episcopal Church in Washington, Va., at 11 a.m., followed by a reception, at the home of Beverly and John Fox Sullivan. Interment will be held at Oak Hill Cemetery in Georgetown, Washington, D.C., on Wednesday, June 20.

Guest speaker

Stephen Dareing was the guest speaker for the morning worship service on Sunday (June 10) at the Washington Baptist Church. Dareing, a member of the church, is nearing his completion of his Master of Divinity degree at Richmond Baptist Theological Seminary.

Butterfly plants

The Rappahannock County Garden Club invites you to join them for a presentation on “Native Plantings for Butterflies,” at 1:30 p.m. Wednesday, June 20, at the Washington fire hall. The featured speaker is Robin Williams, board member of Virginia Old Rag Master Naturalists and the Virginia Native Plant Society. Call 540-987-9459 if you have any questions.


Birthday wishes go out to Steve Clatterbuck, he will celebrate his special day on Saturday (June 16).

Father’s Day breakfast

Give your dad a break from breakfast duty on Father’s Day. Washington Volunteer Fire and Rescue offers its well-known breakfast buffet from 7 to 11 Sunday (June 17) at the fire hall. Adults $8 ($4 ages 4 to 12); all proceeds benefit the squad. For more information, call 540-675-3615.

Since Sunday is Father’s Day, I would like to end with this poem, by an unknown author, for all the fathers out there:

What Makes a Dad

God took the strength of a mountain,

The majesty of a tree,

The warmth of a summer sun,

The calm of a quiet sea,

The generous soul of nature,

The comforting arm of night,

The wisdom of the ages,

The power of the eagle’s flight,

The joy of a morning in spring,

The faith of a mustard seed,

The patience of eternity,

The depth of a family need,

Then God combined these qualities,

When there was nothing more to add,

He knew His masterpiece was complete,

And so, He called it . . . Dad.

Happy Fathers Day!