The Rapp for April 24

Fourth (Estate) Friday at Tula’s

Our monthly traveling story-conference meeting, open to all, returns to the new Tula’s off Main (in the Kramer Building in Washington) this Friday (April 25) at 9 a.m. The coffee’s on us for the one-hour open forum; the topics are on you. We’ll push together as many of furniture maker Peter Kramer’s beautiful new cherry and walnut cafe tables at the just-reopened restaurant as necessary. Call us at 540-675-3338 for more information.

El Quijote: Open tomorrow

Speaking of just-reopened: Owner/executive chef Emilio Fontan says the doors to El Quijote, his new traditional Spanish cuisine and tapas restaurant at Sperryville’s Rappahannock Central, will open tomorrow (Friday, April 25) to welcome lunch and dinner guests every Thursday through Sunday.

From left, manager Rosita Mendoza, owner Emilio Fontan and head chef Andres Delgado at Sperryville’s newest restaurant.
From left, manager Rosita Mendoza, owner Emilio Fontan and head chef Andres Delgado at Sperryville’s newest restaurant. Bette Hileman

Over the past few months, the restaurant has undergone a major transformation. “The decor is warm and inviting and takes you on a journey to Spain without leaving Rappahannock County,” says Jerome Niessen, owner of Rappahannock Central, the converted apple shed that nowadays houses artists’ studios, galleries and retail space in Sperryville’s River District.

Fontan’s and head chef Andres Delgado’s menu features tapas and traditional Spanish cuisine; the bar area offers Spanish wines, beers, mojitos and espresso. Both Delgado and manager Rosita Mendoza worked for the Fontans’ Miami restaurant, which won a recent award for the best tapas in the city.

Fontan and Delgado are originally from Spain, and El Quijote’s dishes are inspired by traditional home-cooking recipes. If you’ve ever traveled to Spain and savored the food there, Fontan says, you will recognize the wonderful flavors unique to that region.

El Quijote’s hours, for now: 11 to 9 Thursday and Sunday, 11 to 10 Friday-Saturday. Reservations are not required (but some dishes require advance notice). Call 540-987-8187.

Yes, it’s Fodderstack Weekend

Not sure if there’s enough going on around the county this Saturday? Check our event calendar at and you’ll find that, first off, Saturday (April 26) is the 36th running of the Fodderstack 10K Race — an annual spring tradition for hundreds of runners from near and far, from Flint Hill to Washington and encompassing all the hills and blooming views between. Race-day registration is $30 and you have till 8:30 a.m. Saturday to do that at the Flint Hill fire hall. Visit for all the details.

Another locally popular event also takes place Saturday morning — the 13th annual Waterpenny Farm spring plant sale — from 9 to 3 at the farm, on Waterpenny Lane off U.S. 211 just east of Sperryville. Visit or call 540-987-8567 for more.

‘The Music Man,’ chamber music and more

RCHS performs "The Music Man" this weekend.
RCHS performs “The Music Man” this weekend.

Rappahannock County High School’s drama club performs Meredith Wilson’s “The Music Man” this weekend at the school auditorium: Shows are at 7 p.m. Saturday and 3 p.m. Sunday. Tickets are $7 in advance (call the high school at 540-227-0745), $10 at the door. The students, according to drama teacher Russell Paulette, “have been doing a phenomenal job, considering we’ve lost a large chunk of our rehearsal time.” He’s referring to this winter’s weather-related cancellations, which Paulette says probably scotched 20 of the 60 rehearsals scheduled since January. “The students have been working overtime to make sure we have something worth showing everybody.”

Sunday at the Theatre in Washington, meanwhile, the Smithsonian Chamber Players perform a program of music by Joseph Haydn at 3. Tickets are $25 ($10 ages 18 and younger). Call 540-675-1253 or email

Bozell speaks at annual Reagan Dinner

The Rappahannock County Republicans’ annual Ronald Reagan Potluck Dinner is 6 p.m. Saturday (April 26) at the Old Washington School (567 Mount Salem Ave., Washington), and features columnist, commentator and Media Research Center president L. Brent Bozell III as its guest speaker.

Contact Republican Committee chair Angela Deavers ( if you haven’t signed up yet (and to let them know which of the Great Communicator’s favorite foods you’re bringing — meatloaf, mac and cheese, green beans, mashed potato, apple crisp, etc.). There’s also a silent auction, and the chance to meet Bozell, one of the most outspoken leaders in the country’s conservative movement.

Media Research Center, which Bozell founded in 1987, has become the largest media watchdog organization in the country, and now includes the popular blog site, the internet news service and the just-launched MRC Latino. Bozell’s bi-weekly column is syndicated to 50-plus media outlets nationwide, and his most recent book, “Collusion: How the Media Stole the 2012 Election” (with Tim Graham), was a national bestseller.

Second Friday, first novel

At 8 p.m. Friday, May 9, the Rappahannock Association for the Arts and the Community caps its spring season with a double dose of local culture. Rappahannock resident Larry “Bud” Meyer will talk about his new novel, a thriller set in Rappahannock County (which plays itself in the novel). The debut novel, “Mother Fracker,” is “a seriocomic environmental novel” that imagines what happens when fracking comes to our idyllic county. The program is free.

Debut Rappahannock novelist Larry “Bud” Meyer speaks May 9 at the library.
Debut Rappahannock novelist Larry “Bud” Meyer speaks May 9 at the library. Courtesy photo

Meyer was a journalist and executive at the Miami Herald for many years and part of a team that won a Pulitzer prize for its coverage of Hurricane Andrew. He divides his time between Miami and Rappahannock, though he says that lately Virginia has pulled ahead of Florida.

Copies of Meyer’s book will be for sale (at a discount) at the Second Friday talk. Impatient readers can also purchase Mother Fracker at R.H. Ballard in Washington, the Corner Store in Sperryville and at

After the May talk, the Second Friday series takes a summer break. The program will resume in September. If you have suggestions for speakers for next year, email them to

Lemonade and tea in Foster’s honor

Frances Foster accepted a plaque from supervisors chair Roger Welch on reaching the half-century milestone as treasurer in 2012.
Frances Foster accepted a plaque from supervisors chair Roger Welch on reaching the half-century milestone as treasurer in 2012. Alex Sharp VIII | Rappahannock News

There’s an excellent — and entirely non-taxing — reason to visit the county treasurer’s office next week, or at least the tent canopy you’ll see out in front of the office on Gay Street:

Next Tuesday (April 29) from 2 to 4:30, the folks along Courthouse Row are throwing a lemonade and tea social, with homemade sweets and such, for Frances Foster, who’s been the Rappahannock County treasurer for the last 52 years. Foster is retiring May 1. The party is on rain or shine, so come by and share in appreciation of Frances Foster’s more than half-century of service to the county.

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