The Washington Town Council voted Monday (Oct. 12) at its regular monthly meeting to appoint Constance Bruce, who moved to the north end of Main Street a year ago with her husband, to fill a vacancy on the town planning commission.

“I am inspired to serve the village by the many examples of care and thoughtfulness throughout the Little Washington community, from the Food Pantry to the Rappahannock Benevolent Fund and many other efforts that actively support local culture, education, sports and our wildlife,” Bruce wrote in her letter of application to Mayor Fred Catlin. “In particular, I am pleased to be already working with the Rappahannock Association for Art and Community.”

In other actions during the council’s 40-minute meeting, Catlin and the four other council members present agreed to cancel the town’s annual candlelit Christmas gathering for town residents and businesses, typically held at town hall the weekend after the Christmas Parade (also cancelled).

“We should absolutely cancel the event,” said council member Gail Swift, considering the number of people who usually pack the small town hall building. Swift and council member Mary Ann Kuhn suggested the council put its energy instead into decorating the town for the holidays. Catlin suggested the town donate the funds budgeted for the town’s party to the Rappahannock Food Pantry, but Swift, who also serves as the town treasurer, reminded him that this year’s COVID-lean fiscal year budget, which the council approved in June, does not include a line item for the holiday celebration.

“We need to go ahead and decorate,” said Swift.

— Roger Piantadosi

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