The Rapp for Aug. 31

Take the survey

Rappahannock County needs your participation in a survey identifying options to improve broadband in underserved areas of Rappahannock County. The upcoming needs assessment survey will be launched Sept. 15, helping the county identify specific areas of need and provide important data to be shared with telecommunication companies.

John Lesinski, chair of the county’s broadband committee, says while parts of Rappahannock have broadband, many citizens have no service or else slow, unreliable, and inadequate reception to meet basic needs. Ironically, the things that draw people to Rappahannock — rolling hills, mountain vistas, bucolic solitude — are the same things that make it difficult to get reliable Internet.  

Needless to say, there are many benefits to Internet access: safety, economic, and educational, to name a few. Washington resident Ashleigh Cannon Sharp, for example, told the committee she recently discovered the benefits of online health services. After noticing a circular rash on her leg, she took to the Internet and an online medical site, where she quickly met with a qualified doctor using video chat. The service took her insurance and the doctor was able to prescribe medication for Lyme disease.

“This online service allowed me to see a doctor without having to leave my business, find childcare for my daughter, and drive 30 miles. All residents can benefit from this same easy and immediate access to healthcare,” Cannon Sharp notes.

Beginning Sept. 15, residents can access the survey online at or obtain a paper copy at the county library, schools, administrative offices, and many local businesses. The survey can also be completed at one of two upcoming town hall meetings to be held in September, time and date forthcoming.

Hidden figures

Tomorrow kicks-off the autumn season’s first RAAC “Friday Movie Night,” featuring the once Hidden Figures.

Three brilliant but little known African-American women at NASA — Katherine Johnson (Taraji P. Henson), Dorothy Vaughan (Octavia Spencer) and Mary Jackson (Janelle Monáe) — serve as the brains behind one of the greatest operations in history: the launch of astronaut John Glenn (Glen Powell) into orbit, a stunning achievement that restored the nation’s confidence, turned around the space race and galvanized the world.

Take note: showtime is a new time — 7 p.m. — at the Little Washington Theatre. In conjunction with the Friday movies, Tula’s will offer a special fixed-price menu starting at 5 p.m.

Fine wines

Not one, not two, but three popular Rappahannock wineries — Narmada, Gray Ghost, and Magnolia Vineyards — won well-deserved medals at the Atlantic Seaboard Wine Competition.

Narmada won Best in Show, plus a silver. Gray Ghost won two silvers and six bronze. And Magnolia won a silver and a bronze. Wineries in 17 states submit wines to the competition.

Hello honey

Virginia is forecasting a “favorable” honey harvest this autumn. As the honey harvest ramps up in September, Virginia agriculture officials are encouraging honey lovers to take advantage of the season’s impressive harvest by purchasing local honey at markets, festivals and other celebrations.

According to a recent survey, Virginia honey bee colonies have increased by 23 percent since last year. In 2016, Virginia honey production was valued at $1.1 million.

 “Honey bee pollination is an important part of Virginia’s agricultural industry,” said state agriculture commissioner Sandy Adams. “An increase in honey bee colonies often means there are more bees to pollinate crops and the result of that pollination means more honey for the consumer.”

Rappahannock homeowners are reminded they can help honey bee populations by providing flowering plants around their homes.

Find tranquility

Talented Remington artist Nancy Brittle will show her much-celebrated paintings at Middle Street Gallery in Sperryville from Sept. 15 through Oct. 22. There will be an opening reception at the gallery on Saturday, Sept. 16 from 3 p.m. until 5 p.m.

In her show, “Quiet Hours,” Brittle offers more than a dozen paintings created from the rural views in and around her home. She draws inspiration from “family, friends, dogs and cats, flowers, and the familiar fields about our house,” she says. “Often, my subjects are quietly pursuing a daily task or habit. The flower images are of flowers I grow and my sister arranges. They are part of the quiet beauty that enrich the hour.”

In “The Morning Paper” (pictured here), the artist offers a view of a woman seated at her kitchen table reading a newspaper, warm morning light streaming in through an open window behind her and a vase of freshly cut garden flowers positioned in front. The painting has an impressionistic feel; the colors range from subtle to vivid but are never garish.

“The Morning Paper” by Nancy Brittle is among the paintings to be shown at Middle Street Galler

Brittle will discuss her methods and her works at an informal “artist talk” at the gallery on Sat. Oct. 14 from 3 p.m. until 5 p.m. Middle Street Gallery is located above the Before & After Cafe at 31 Main St. in Sperryville. It is open from 10 a.m. until 5 pm on Friday, Saturday and Sunday.

Cambridge ‘dream’

Rappahannock’s stage will soon be taken over by young performers from Cambridge University. And you know what that means. To experience Shakespeare at its best, hurry and make reservations now for the Little Washington Theatre, Sunday, Sept. 10th, at 3 p.m.

One of Shakespeare’s most-loved comedies, A Midsummer Night’s Dream, will be performed by the talented troupe from Cambridge, who will be in Rappahannock for only appearance.

Established under the patronage of Dame Judi Dench in 2000, the actors, directors, designers and technicians travel up and down the Atlantic seaboard every September to bring a professional quality production of a Shakespeare play to audiences in the eastern United States.

Email: or call 540-675-1253. $25 adults, $10 under 18.

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