The Rapp for June 22

Did we comply?

Everybody who has the time and curiosity this weekend should visit the Scrabble School, which in cooperation with the George Carver Alumni Association will be presenting an original exhibit from curator Terry Miller surrounding Brown v. Board of Education and the impact felt here in Rappahannock County.

Rather than integrate schools after the landmark Supreme Court decision of 1954, which had been argued by Thurgood Marshall and the NAACP, some states, including counties here in Virginia, refused to comply. This localized exhibit will provide “stunning details on compliance in Rappahannock” you might not have known about.

Thurgood Marshall, Supreme Court Justice served from 1967 to 1981. Courtesy photo

The exhibit runs both Saturday and Sunday, June 17 and 18, from 2 to 5 p.m. Admission is free, donations are welcome, and light refreshments will be served. The Scrabble School is located at 111 Scrabble Road, just a short distance from the Scrabble intersection with Route 522 one mile south of Woodville.

Johanna and Tony

Johanna Day, who grew up in Rappahannock County, was nominated for a Tony Award for her Broadway performance in Sweat by Lynn Nottage. This was Johanna’s second Tony nomination. In 2000, she was nominated for her performance in Proof. Both plays won Pulitzer Prizes.

Johanna Day, Rappahannock raised and two-time Tony Award nominee. Courtesy photo

Johanna, born in Winchester in 1964, is the daughter of Rappahannock residents Eileen Mitchell Day Walter Day.

Having wanted to act since she was a child, Johanna graduated from the American Academy of Dramatic Arts in New York in 1984. She has appeared in numerous plays on and off Broadway, including Arena Stage in DC, where he won the Helen Hayes Award as Leading Actress in a Resident Play for her starring role in the 2006 production of The Rainmaker.

She has frequently appeared in guest roles in television dramas, including Madam Secretary, Elementary, Masters of Sex, and several of the Law & Order franchise productions, but she is probably best known for her role of Marilyn Stafford on the daytime TV drama, All My Children.

The 2017 Tony Awards ceremony was televised June 11. Unfortunately, Johanna did not win, but surely it’s just a matter of time until she does.

Fourth countdown

The countdown is underway for the old-fashioned red, white and blue American Festival Concert, to be held Saturday, July 1, in the historic setting of Avon Hall in Washington.

Conducting the orchestra? Who else but Rappahannock County’s own Colonel John Bourgeois, the 25th director of “The President’s Own” United States Marine Band.

Washington Mayor John Fox Sullivan likens the concert in his small town of 125 people “an old-fashioned family celebration.”

“The public is invited to this free event,” he reminds everybody. “Bring lawn chairs, blankets and a picnic lunch. There will be special activities for the children.”

The concert will begin at 5 p.m., although the Avon Hall grounds will open at noon so that festival-goers can spread out their blankets on the sprawling lawn and begin serving up the fried chicken, potato salad and lemonade.

“Come early!” the mayor encourages Rappahannock residents. “This is a celebration of America.”

Meanwhile, don’t forget Rappahannock County’s July 4th celebration, to benefit the Sperryville Volunteer Fire Department, which starts at 1 p.m. on Tuesday, July 4, at Thornton Hill Race Course in Sperryville.

As usual, there will be music, amusements, food, tailgating — and fireworks at dusk.

Tap the sun

Neighbors in Rappahannock County have been working with the Upper Piedmont Solar Co-op in going solar. Last year, 39 Rappahannock homeowners went solar. Co-op members are able to leverage their group buying power to get a discount off the installation price for their systems.

The group, which is seeking additional members, will host an informational meeting June 24 at the Theatre at Washington, 291 Gay Street, starting at 10 a.m. The session will educate the community about solar and the co-op process. The co-op is working with VA SUN, a nonprofit that helps make solar more affordable and accessible.

“I am excited to work with Rappahannock County residents to educate them about the benefits of solar energy,” said Aaron Sutch, VA SUN Program Director. “If you’ve ever thought about going solar before, this is the perfect opportunity to do so.”

Get off the sofa!

A local hiker enjoying the foothills of the Blue Ridge mountains. Photo by John McCaslin

Want your kids to enjoy hiking and the great outdoors?

“Make it fun,” says Jeff Alt, who has lots of great advice on how some simple pieces of equipment and a few techniques can help make sure you and the kids have a great time outdoors. “It’s time to get off the couch and hit the trail with your kids.”

Shenandoah National Park, Shenandoah National Park Association, and Delaware North Company are all hosting special programs featuring Alt, the outdoor recreation expert and award-winning author who will inspire families to enjoy and care for nature and the outdoors.

Jeff will once again feature family-oriented programs including “Time Travel with Bubba Jones & Family” based on his Adventure of Bubba Jones: Time Traveling through Shenandoah National Park book. The programs are all free. Here’s this weekend’s schedule:

Saturday morning, June 17: “Get Your Kids Hiking,” 11 a.m., Byrd Visitor Center, Mile 51 on Skyline Drive. Join Jeff as he teams up with Shenandoah rangers to lead kids and accompanying adults on a short hike loaded with hands-on family-friendly hiking tips and ways to explore the outdoors. This short family stroll turns a walk in the park into a fun filled multi-dimensional adventure. Entrance fees are waived on June 17 for Park Neighbor Day.

Saturday afternoon, June 17: “Walk for Sunshine: Appalachian Trail,” 4 p.m., Big Meadows Lodge, Mile 51. Jeff shares his 2,160 mile Appalachian Trail adventures with Shenandoah National Park visitors. Jeff uses humor and adventure in a storytelling format. His presentations involve music, slides, and personal narration.

Sunday afternoon, June 18: “Time Travel with Bubba Jones & Family.” Jeff’s engaging Bubba Jones stories are specially designed to engage kids with wild animal encounters, interesting history, science, and the environment that will have the entire family excited to take their own Shenandoah adventure; 1:30 p.m. Byrd Visitor Center, Mile 51.

A reminder that Shenandoah Park will waive entrance fees for all park visitors this Saturday only in celebration of Park Neighbor Day, an annual event held on the third Saturday of June to honor neighbors who live in the counties and gateway communities surrounding the park.

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