The Rapp for June 22

Skydive into Sperryville

The annual Rappahannock County 4th of July Celebration is always a family favorite among families and visitors. Photo by John McCaslin
Photo by John McCaslin

The Sperryville Volunteer Fire Department is once again organizing the 11th Annual Rappahannock County 4th of July Celebration at the Thornton Hill Hounds Race Course, and what an event-filled birthday party it will be. Better yet, there’s still time to become a much-needed corporate sponsor or underwriter.

Live music for the county’s Independence Day celebration, which can attract upwards of 4,500 people when the weather cooperates, will be provided by the Gold Top County Ramblers and Bobby G and Friends. Also in store are tables of food, skydivers, antique cars and tractors, local nonprofit displays, children’s games, face painting, kiddie rides, moon bounces, a cliff hanger slide, putt-putt golf, dunk tank, a medi-vac helicopter will be on display, and of course the spectacular fireworks display at dusk.

Needless to say, this annual celebration not only recognizes the nation’s independence, but facilitates a joyous atmosphere for Rappahannock County families, friends, organizations and businesses.

“This provides opportunities for local non-profit organizations to display their goods and to maximize on fundraising efforts,” organizers note. “The event also allows the local volunteer fire and rescue companies to enjoy partnerships with one another and, more importantly, the event provides fun and excitement for all ages.”

That said, Sperryville firefighters are happy to answer questions on how to still become a sponsor before the July 4 celebration. Collectively, last year there were more than 25 underwriter/corporate sponsorships.

“Because of increasing costs associated with putting on an event of this magnitude, continued underwriter support is needed each year in order to sustain the event at its current level,” organizers point out.

“With this in mind, very special thanks go out to our current underwriters: Jamie, Lilla and Bill Fletcher; the Hampton Foundation, B&B Signal Company, Cheri Woodard Realty, Gibson Rental, Greg Williams Tree & Landscaping Service, Greve Foundation, Pepsi-Cola of Central Virginia, and last but never least when it comes to supporting this community, Union Bank & Trust.

Each of the sponsors’ continued support allows residents and visitors alike to enjoy fellowship and celebration at a location that is arguably one of the most breathtaking horse-racing venues in Virginia.

Corporate sponsorship is $450, which includes a prime space on the infield large enough for a 20×20-foot tent, reserved parking alongside the infield, and special recognition during the entire daylong event. Details, as well as underwriter information, will be provided upon request through Gary Settle at

Vendor information can be found at their Facebook page, where volunteer Richie Burke is the contact at 540-987-8124.

Hats off to this year’s 4th of July Committee, including Gary Settle (Chairman), Greg Williams, Mike Leake, Richie Burke, Chucky Jenkins and Larry Grove.

Peter Pan, et al.

A mischievous young Peter Pan interacts with among others a fairy and Native American at the 4th Annual CCLC Peter Pan-themed garden party and fundraiser. Photo by Kathy McNitt

The 4th Annual Child Care & Learning Center’s “Peter Pan Garden Party” held last Saturday evening was well-attended, which isn’t surprising given it was held in the spectacular setting of Mountain View at Eldon Farms.

The Woodville venue offered great food and drink, kids’ activities that would have impressed Peter and his Lost Boys in Neverland, and silent and live auctions that set new records for CCLC fundraisers.

In fact, Heidi Morf and Vinnie Deluise, previously of “24 Crows” in Flint Hill fame, agreed to come out of retirement and prepare an auctioned-off meal for 5 very lucky people. The winning bid was through the (party tent) roof!

Picassiette for cats

A workshop in Picassiette, a type of mosaics, will be held this Saturday, June 24, from 9 a.m until 4 p.m. at Mullany Art Studios in Flint Hill to benefit RappCats. And yes, Candace Clough, the well-known mosaics artist, will be teaching the workshop.

Clough’s most recent large-scale piece entitled The Cat Couch is displayed in front of the Rappahannock News’ office on Main Street in Washington. In fact, if you’ve yet to sit on the Cat Couch it has become a tourist attraction and photo-op favorite alike.

Pique assiette, or picassiette, is French for “stolen from plate.” The workshop will use all types of broken china, pottery, glass figurines, and more to create a themed piece of art. Materials will be available for attendees to use or you can bring your own.

The workshop fee is $75 if you would like to create your own theme and keep your finished artwork. If you would like to come and learn Picassiette and use one of RappCats’ rescue cats currently available for adoption as a model and donate your finished piece to RappCats — the workshop is offered for $25.

Just one of many tables filled with CCLC supporters. Photo by Veronika Benson

If you choose the latter option, your artwork will be given to the person who adopts that cat in the future as a keepsake. Contact Mullany Art Studios at or 540.878.3687 to register.

An example of Picassiette, a type of mosaics. Courtesy photo

Star in a video

One of Rappahannock County’s favorite bands — The Nethers Hot Club — is shooting a new music video, and you can be in it.

The Nethers Hot Club Band during a recent appearance on Tula’s patio. Photo by John McCsaslin

“Here’s the story,” says band leader Linda Heimstra. “Last spring I was awarded a [RAAC] Claudia Mitchell Grant so I could study the amazing art of painting portraits with oils. I started by painting musician Wendi Sirat, and now I’m ready to unveil the painting, and the band is going to put on a show to celebrate. And while we’re at it, let’s have a party and shoot a video!

“Come and be a part of the audience as we shoot our upcoming show at the RAAC Theater. The new group Ukulele Ladies will be opening for us, featuring Wendi with Jeannie Wall and Pati Brumfield. In between sets, we will have the long-awaited (drum roll please) unveiling of the portrait..”

There are several other surprises in store as well.

Music and fun begins at 8 p.m. this Saturday, June 24, at the RAAC Theater in Washington directly across the street from Tula’s. Tickets are $15 and can be reserved by calling 540.987.3349 or email

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