The Rapp for Nov. 17

Holiday show has ‘a whole lotta birds’

In a rehearsal for RAAC Theatre's production of "The 12 Days of Christmas (from left) Maeve Ciuba, as Shirley Partridge, tries to get the attention of the four Calling Birds, aka Lilie Halko, McKenna Torosian, Isaac Plaksin and Elena Corum.
In a rehearsal for RAAC Theatre’s production of “The 12 Days of Christmas (from left) Maeve Ciuba, as Shirley Partridge, tries to get the attention of the four Calling Birds, aka Lilie Halko, McKenna Torosian, Isaac Plaksin and Elena Corum. Raymond Boc | Rappahannock News

In “The 12 Days of Christmas,” this year’s RAAC Community Theatre holiday production, Christmas is just around the corner and Shirley the Partridge is a bit nervous. In D.C. playwright Renee Calarco’s imaginative script, it’s Shirley’s very first time carrying out the ancient family tradition — gathering the French Hens and the Calling Birds and … oh, everyone — for the official singing of The Song. With strict instructions from her mom, Grammy and Great Grammy to guard the Five Golden Rings, Shirley sets off on a quest to find the song participants. But there are some bumps in the road.

Performances are scheduled for Dec. 2-3 and Dec. 9-11 at the RAAC Theatre. Immediately following the Dec. 3 matinee, Calarco will conduct a “talk-back” Q&A session, during which she will discuss her inspiration for the script and answer questions.

Calarco originally wrote “12 Days” for a cast of five actors who play 21 roles. But for the RAAC production, director Patty Hardee cast the roles individually and even made up some roles for an ensemble of several small children. This production features many familiar faces as well as newcomers.

Don’t miss this playful modern interpretation of the classic Christmas song with fresh dialogue and vivid characters.

“The 12 Days of Christmas” performances are 8 p.m. on two Fridays (Dec. 2 and 9) and at 3 p.m. two Saturdays (Dec. 3 and 10) and 3 p.m. Sunday, Dec. 11 at the theater (310 Gay St., Washington). Tickets ($15, $5 for ages 11 and younger) are available at or call 800-695-6075.

Band doings

The RCHS Winter Band Concert is Dec. 8 at the high school.
The RCHS Winter Band Concert is Dec. 8 at the high school. Courtesy photo

Save the date to hear an award-winning band celebrate the holidays in music: The Rappahannock County High School Winter Band Concert, featuring the RCHS Jazz Ensemble and RCHS Concert Band, is 6 p.m. Thursday, Dec. 8 in the high school auditorium. There’s no admission fee; donations welcome but not required. For more information, call 540-227-0745 or email

Meanwhile, if your donation to the band came in the form of a purchase for the band’s annual Florida Citrus Sale, you can pick up your tropical goods from 3:30 to 6 p.m. Dec. 9 and 8:30 to 11 a.m. Dec. 10 at the Rappahannock Farmer’s Co-op.

Rapp at Home joins #GivingTuesday

Rapp at Home, Rappahannock’s senior village for neighbors helping neighbors, is participating this year in #GivingTuesday. A global day of giving, the event harnesses the collective power of individuals, communities and organizations to encourage philanthropy and to celebrate generosity worldwide.

Occurring this year on Nov. 29, #GivingTuesday is held annually on the Tuesday after Thanksgiving (in the U.S.), just after the widely recognized events Black Friday and Cyber Monday that kick off the holiday shopping season. As an antidote to the frenzied shopping scene, #Giving Tuesday is designed to inspire people to give back in impactful ways to the charities and causes they support. The event was born in New York in 2012. Since then, people from different backgrounds, cultures and regions around the world have helped to create a global day of giving to help strengthen communities and repair the world.

Rapp at Home serves all of Rappahannock’s senior residents. Membership benefits include access to transportation services, social programs, grocery and prescription drug delivery and member discounts. More services are planned for the future.

To donate to support Rapp at Home on Giving Tuesday, visit To learn more about Rapp at Home, visit or call 540-937-HOME (937-4663). To learn more about #Giving Tuesday, visit

RAAC’s grant workshop Dec. 10

RAAC is hosting its first-ever grant workshop 10 a.m. to noon Saturday, Dec. 10 at Rappahannock Public Library. Guidelines and application for RAAC’s 2017 Claudia Mitchell Arts Fund grants will be posted Dec. 1 at At the workshop, Mitchell Fund committee members will be on hand to go over it all, talk about what constitutes a strong proposal and answer questions. (For anyone not able to attend the workshop, Frequently Asked Questions will be posted on the RAAC website later in the month.)

Since 2012, RAAC has awarded more than $110,000 to 42 Rappahannock artists and organizations.

Want to be a Master Naturalist?

The Virginia Master Naturalist Program is a volunteer service program that provides environmental education, citizen science, and stewardship of parks and natural areas. Old Rag Master Naturalists is the chapter that covers Culpeper, Rappahannock, Madison, Greene, Orange and western Fauquier counties.

The Old Rag chapter offers new members a basic training course that provides an overview of environmental sciences taught by academics and professionals, and focuses on the ecosystems in the Piedmont and Blue Ridge regions of Virginia. In exchange, members commit to do 40 hours of volunteer service. Many do much more: Master Naturalist volunteers provide thousands of hours of free labor to preserving and protecting Virginia and its natural resources.

The next classes start March 17, and are 9 a.m. to noon on Fridays for 14 weeks (plus five Saturday field trips). Following training, participants complete 40 hours of volunteer service on approved projects and eight hours of continuing education to become certified. The cost of training and all materials is $140.

The enrollment period ends Dec. 31. Class size is limited to 15 students. Visit or call Roberta Jalbert at 540-407-0552 for more information.

Made in Virginia — and in Rappahannock!

Featuring products created in the Commonwealth, the 2016 Made in Virginia Awards celebrate innovation, entrepreneurship and craft in food, drink, sport and outdoors, and design.

From hundreds of submissions, among the 16 winners selected for 2016 by Virginia Living’s editors were two Rappahannock County businesses — Flint Hill’s own Virginia Chutney, chosen for its spicy plum chutney; and Sperryville’s Copper Fox Distillery, for its rye whisky.

Other selections included Richmond-based fiber artist Andrea Donnelly, who was selected as the overall winner for her handwoven scarves. Other winners include artisan ice cream maker Loopy Scoops in Haymarket, Mother Shrub in Richmond, Roanoke’s Silver Tear Campers and Waynesboro-based Jake’s Clay Art. Winners were chosen for the quality and ingenuity of their products.

Virginia Living’s 2016 Made in Virginia Awards are featured in the December 2016 issue, on newsstands around the state now.

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