Sperryville column for Aug. 8

Time to get to Hearthstock . . .

Hearthstone School in Sperryville is set to host its second annual Hearthstock event this Saturday (Aug. 10) from 4 to midnight. The free festival celebrates children and families and features music, fun and games.

Hearthstone was founded in 1996, and accepts nursery through 12th-grade students. The school’s mission is to bring academics to life through arts and the natural world, and embraces the founding principles of the Rudolf Steiner’s holistic Waldorf Method.

A parent cooperative governed by a council elected by parents, Hearthstone encourages families to involve themselves with the school at least eight hours a month. They wish to “balance artistic and practical work educating the whole child, hand and heart, as well as mind,” as the school website says. “Imagination and creativity are cultivated as well as cognitive growth and a sense of responsibility for the earth and its inhabitants.”

The celebration this Saturday is a “Stardust Music and Fun Festival” featuring local talent performing on the outdoor stage. Entertainment includes DJ services provided by Ian Chini and such local-favorite folk, reggae, blues and rock bands as The Stink Bugs, Pigs From a Gun, Karen Jonas, Bobby G & Friends, Three Piece Box featuring Terry & Noah Waggener and Smiggy Smith, Sleepfeeder and Kiaya Abernathy. (Kiaya is a recent graduate of the University of Virginia and an alumna of Hearthstone. Her dad Billy, who performs with her, was a music teacher at Hearthstone when she was enrolled.)

Davette Leonard, Hearthstone’s art teacher, provides amazing face painting and signature paintings for sale. Pottery teacher Jill Fetterman and local artist Linda Heimstra will be firing up and painting whimsical clay frogs, for sale to benefit the global nonprofit Save the Frogs organization.

Rainbow Market is selling tie-dyed and other organic and natural clothing, and our own Heather Marsh of Turkey Hill Stables will be providing pony rides and donating all proceeds to Hearthstone. And of course what better way to celebrate dusk and a Shenandoah Valley sunset than Sula’s hula hoop dance of fire.

There’s food and libations aplenty, moon bounces, pony rides, hair braiding, beading and sand art for the youngsters. The menu includes wines and cheeses paired to complement, local grass fed beef from Gennin Longhorns, burgers (including veggie burgers) and dogs, fries and popcorn, natural sodas and a variety of flavored ice creams and desserts.

Come early or stay late! Hearthstone School is on U.S. 211 west of Sperryville. For more information, call 540-987-9212.