Win­ter chill ush­ers in clear skies for Dark Sky event

Rappahannock News - - THEATER • WASHINGTON - JAN CLATTERBUCK [email protected]­; 675-3338

Ac­cord­ing to Tor­ney Van Acker, about 20 peo­ple de­fied the frigid tem­per­a­tures at Rap­pa­han­nock County Park for the last ‘dark sky’ event of the year this past Satur­day Nov. 10. Lo­cally-pro­duced hot cider and home­made cook­ies were on hand to cheer the par­tic­i­pants dur­ing the event, spon­sored by the park and the Rap­pa­han­nock League for En­vi­ron­men­tal Pro­tec­tion (RLEP). The evening’s ac­tiv­i­ties in­cluded a pre­sen­ta­tion, two video clips and sky ob­ser­va­tions with three tele­scopes.

James Grana­han from the North­ern Vir­ginia As­tron­omy Club (NOVAC) shared an in­ter­est­ing pre­sen­ta­tion about space­craft from var­i­ous coun­tries that have de­ployed rovers on the sur­face of Mars since 1976. It was fol­lowed by an ex­cit­ing video clip on the com­pli­cated land­ing se­quence for the United States’ In­sight rover due to set down on Mars this Nov. 26. The sec­ond video clip, “Los­ing the Dark,” was pro­vided by the In­ter­na­tional Dark-Sky As­so­ci­a­tion (IDA). It showed how the re­cent growth of poorly-de­signed ar­ti­fi­cial light­ing has ad­versely im­pacted hu­man and an­i­mal liv­ing con­di­tions as well as our abil­ity to view the stars.

A big thank you to James Grana­han, and Rap­pa­han­nock’s own Lyt Wood and Tor­ney for the use of their tele­scopes. Par­tic­i­pants gath­ered around to get glimpses of the set­ting cres­cent moon with its sun­lit craters mark­ing the ter­mi­na­tor be­tween the lu­nar day and night. Af­ter the moon set, tele­scopes were re­pointed to give stun­ning views of Mars, Saturn with its glo­ri­ous rings, the An­dromeda gal­axy (the only non-star ob­ject you can see with the naked eye), the M13 glob­u­lar clus­ter with its bil­lions of stars, the Al­bireo dou­ble star (one golden color, the other blue) and the dis­tant Dumb­bell plan­e­tary neb­ula.


Novem­ber is a month to cel­e­brate all things we are thank­ful for, from Elec­tion Day to Thanks­giv­ing!

Ac­cord­ing to Sue Garvin, the Pre-K class at CCLC cel­e­brated Elec­tion Day in sev­eral big ways. The stu­dents voted for their fa­vorite Thanks­giv­ing din­ner and dessert foods us­ing pa­per bal­lots. Turkey was a strong win­ner in the din­ner race, fol­lowed by stuff­ing and cran­ber­ries. Mashed pota­toes and gravy failed to get a sin­gle vote! Ice cream hand­ily beat pump­kin pie and brown­ies as the fa­vorite dessert.

The chil­dren also worked to­gether on a large white­board to create a turkey with all the nec­es­sary parts. Each child took a turn to iden­tify and add a body part that their turkey needed. The first pieces drawn were a head and body. For­tu­nately, some­one con­nected the head and body with a neck! Wings, legs, feet, eyes, beak and beard all made their ap­pear­ance. Fi­nally, each child had the op­por­tu­nity to add their fa­vorite-color tail feathers.


Con­tin­u­ing a longestab­lished tra­di­tion, this year’s Com­mu­nity Thanks­giv­ing Ser­vice will take place in the sanc­tu­ary of First Bap­tist Church on North Main Street in Lit­tle Wash­ing­ton on Thanks­giv­ing morn­ing, Thurs­day, Nov. 22, at 10 a.m.

Spon­sored by the Rap­pa­han­nock Clergy As­so­ci­a­tion, the ser­vice will in­clude par­tic­i­pa­tion by clergy from the roughly dozen con­gre­ga­tions rep­re­sented by the RCA. Rev. Dr. Gary Aichele will of­fer a pas­toral re­flec­tion on what it re­ally means to “give thanks,” and Wendy Aichele, Min­is­ter of Mu­sic at Wash­ing­ton Bap­tist Church, will once again pro­vide ser­vice mu­sic and lead this year’s Thanks­giv­ing Com­mu­nity Choir. Typ­i­cally last­ing 45-minute, this ser­vice pro­vides a great way “to gather to­gether” with friends and neigh­bors “to ask the Lord’s bless­ing” for the com­ing year, and to re­mem­ber why we take time each Novem­ber to cel­e­brate a day of na­tional thanks­giv­ing. All are wel­come and en­cour­aged to at­tend.

On Sun­day morn­ing, Nov. 25, the Wash­ing­ton Bap­tist Church Choir un­der the di­rec­tion of Wendy Aichele will present its own “Thanks­giv­ing” of­fer­ing dur­ing morn­ing wor­ship at 11 in the Sanc­tu­ary of Wash­ing­ton Bap­tist Church, 180 Gay Street.

Sim­i­lar to the tra­di­tional Christ­mas “Ser­vice of Lessons and Car­ols,” the pro­gram — “Morn­ing Psalm: A Ser­vice of Sa­cred Songs” —will con­sist of se­lected read­ing from the Book of Psalms fol­lowed by cho­ral re­sponses — sev­eral of which will be ac­com­pa­nied by vi­o­lin­ist An­gela Sny­der.

Cho­ral se­lec­tions for full choir and smaller en­sem­bles by such noted con­tem­po­rary Chris­tian com­posers as Joseph Martin, Don Be­sig, Patti Bren­nan and Jay Alt­house will pro­vide a rich sampling of some of the bestM-F sa­cred cho­ral mu­sic of the past 25 years.

A ser­vice you won’t want to miss, “Morn­ing Psalm: A Sa­cred Ser­vice of Song” pro­vides a won­der­ful op­por­tu­nity for fam­ily and friends to ex­pe­ri­ence what promises to be a very spe­cial and mean­ing­ful Sun­day wor­ship ser­vice. All are wel­come.


My friend lost her iPhone 7, with a dull red cover in the Town of Wash­ing­ton, some­time on Sun­day af­ter­noon be­tween 2:45 and 4, dur­ing the Nol Put­nam film screen­ing? If any­one has found the phone, please bring it to the Rap­pa­han­nock News.

Have a won­der­ful week.


The Pre-K class at Child Care Learn­ing Cen­ter, cel­e­brated Elec­tion Day in sev­eral big ways. The stu­dents voted for their fa­vorite Thanks­giv­ing din­ner and dessert foods us­ing pa­per bal­lots.

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