Down Memory Lane for May 10

Dec. 13, 1990

Rappahannock’s Christmas tree growers are hoping for a good year this season. For some of them last year, with snow on the back roads during both of the busiest weekends for customers, it was a disaster.

One who had success last year is the county’s first grower to plant Christmas trees for the cut-your-own business. Amissville resident William Keim said that he normally only sells one weekend a year. When the road was ice-covered last year, he decided not to open. He put a chain across hs driveway and a sign that said he would sell to customers with four-wheel drive vehicles only. He sent his assistants home.

By Sunday the roadside was lined up with parked cars and his customers walked in to purchase their trees from Quail Call Farm. He sold over 400 trees that day.

Keim says he has not advertised for years, and about three years ago he decided to cut hs business back by no longer sending out notice to customers on his mailing list. However, loyal customers know he is normally open the second weekend in December and they keep coming, he said.

The state’s plan to save $2 million by requiring the consolidation of small, largely rural Social Services offices, including Rappahannock’s, was dealt a setback when the advisory committee appointed to study implementation of the plan instead advised that the departments not be consolidated, at least not in time to take effect with the next fiscal year.

Deputy Secretary for Health and Human Resources Robert Vassar, who chaired the advisory committee, said, “The Advisory Committee established to determine how best to do it within the time frame, concluded that it could not be done in the time frame suggested.”

Feb. 18, 1998

After 18 years of serving the County of Rappahannock as a member of its board of supervisors, and 11 of those years as board chairman, Hubert S. Gilkey is stepping down.

Recently offered a job at the Marriott Ranch in Fauquier, Gilkey said he couldn’t turn down an offer to do what he loves, what he does anyway at home on his farm, and get all the benefits besides. The move is the reason behind his decision to resign his position on the board.

Representative for the Wakefield District, Gilkey said, “I’ve always felt that serving on the board was a way to give something back to the community. Everyone had always asked me to run again and again. So I did and I enjoyed it. But, when I was offered the job at Marriott I felt it was a good opportunity, it’s a great company.”