Last word on First Night, Aug. 9

First Night

I was appalled and chagrined when I read that the Williamsburg First Night was being canceled after 24 successful years. Lack of funds and volunteers was stated as the reason for canceling. This has been a great family event that crowds of people look forward to. Nobody ever asked me for a monetary donation, which I would gladly give. Perhaps a public request would help. The Williamsburg area has wineries, breweries and taverns popping up all over town. Since the "First Night" event is non-alcoholic, why not put a First Night tax on all the retail booze sold in town. Maybe a nickel a drink. That should easily cover the shortfall.

Tavern music

The last night for the Balladeers of Colonial Williamsburg was July 31. I was one of the Balladeers. We met at Chowning's Tavern for one last evening of music, seeing dear friends and bidding each other a fond farewell. I wish to thank all the people who came to see us. Thank you for taking the time to join us for singing songs together, for your hugs and kind words and your tears. The tavern was filled with love that night and I will cherish the memory forever. God bless us, every one!

We read in the Gazette that Colonial Williamsburg's new tavern music program is the result of careful research. Truly careful research would show that Colonial taverns had two kinds of music. One, provided by professional musicians, was to accompany occasional dances. The other, performed by the patrons, was singing folk songs about drinking, love, soldiers, sailors and the seasons — that was their entertainment the way we go out to the movies. Since 21st-century people going out to dinner don't plan on singing, it was this important part of Colonial life that the CW balladeer program so ably portrayed for decades, and now this aspect will no longer be there. A little quick math: six full-time musician employees plus all expenses and benefits ought to come to about $200,000 per year. The various part-time contractor balladeers with no expenses or benefits ought to cost —you guessed it —about $200,000 per year. Once again, CW fixing something that is not broken.

Passing delight

I saw a wonderful "herd" of Corgi dogs in Ford's Colony being walked by a couple who obviously enjoyed my reaction to this beautiful sight. As a dog owner/lover, you made my day. The Queen would have enjoyed it, too.

Looking for ...

Looking for someone who does the sprinkler system backflow test. mayorwuz@hotmail.com. Thanks.

I have a family Bible that needs rebinding. Having difficulty finding any local facility. Bible is 90 years old. Is there someone who can help me? William L. Webster, 757-566-2331.

To those who know, what is the suggested course of action to take when you see an injured goose on the road? Is there a place to take it or is it best to get it to the side of the road and let nature take care of things? I know there is an animal emergency clinic on Route 17, but that is quite a bit out of the way from Williamsburg.

Can anyone recommend a humanitarian pest control person to manage a mouse problem? Please call 757-869-5639.

If anyone knows who adopted Bosco from Heritage Humane Society, please see if they'd like to have him start "play dates" with a dog he was surrendered with. The two played non-stop, and the former owner had to give them up due to cancer. The owner who adopted Bosco's friend would love to reunite them in her fenced yard from time to time. Call 757-784-8805.

To the person looking for what to do with your old National Geographics: I have been getting the magazine since the 1950's. Every couple years I take the old copies to the Norge Williamsburg Library. Several years ago, National Geographic put all of the previous issues, all the way back to the first issue, on DVD's. I go back and look read the back issues on my computer. Check with them to see if they are still available.

Tattered flag

The U.S. flag displayed in front of the W&M Army ROTC building on Richmond Road is torn and tattered. While the ROTC cadets may be away for the summer, certainly there must be a maintenance or custodial staff available to replace the flag.

Going to church

If you go to church at the Saturday 5:30 p.m. service, it is considered the children/young family service. If you go to the 10 a.m. Sunday service, it is mostly older children, more mature families. The 8 a.m. Sunday service is older generation attendees and seniors. If you have screaming, jabbering, talking, crying children that you cannot control, go to the Saturday or late Sunday service. If your child is disruptive, take the child to the small chapel, the commons area, the crying room, outside or home. Better yet, sit in the front pews so the priest can see you and will be able to know who you are. Maybe he would like to get to know you better.

Worth the time

Recommend seeing the movie "Dunkirk." More than 900 British civilian boat owners rose to the challenge to cross the 26-mile wide English Channel in the face of Nazi planes and submarines to save the British Army and French Army, which had been driven back to the Dunkirk beaches in northern France and were close to being annihilated. In our current time of national floundering and uncertainty, the movie reminds us that "we the people" can accomplish incredible things working together if we don't let professional politicians and "talking heads" with personal, selfish agendas divide us. Check out Dunkirk history on Wikipedia before you go.

General welfare

The general welfare statement in the Constitution does not now, nor did it ever mean that the federal government would pay your doctor bills, provide you with three meals a day or a free house. It means the federal government will create an environment/laws where all people can take care of themselves. If it had meant the government would feed, clothe and house you, they would started doing that when the Constitution was ratified, but they didn't.

Great award

Our amazing library foundation was just awarded one of only two awards given nationally each year by the Baker & Taylor/United For Libraries Award for Friends and Library Foundations. Congratulations to the volunteers of our foundation for the effort raising $770,000 for the library facilities in the Stryker building — and for winning an award for the effort. We are blessed with energetic and passionate people in Williamsburg. Thank you to all who make our library and our community such a wonderful place to live.

Times of need

It's a shame to see those individuals standing on our corners asking for handouts, but I understand these are times of need. However, I see that many of them smoke. Now, at today's prices for cigarettes, that's a small meal daily they are smoking away.

Arts District

I commend Williamsburg for creating an arts district because I too want to live in a town with artists. The only problem with this so-called arts district is that it does not actually have any artists in it. The reason for this appears to be that there are no reasonably priced places where artists can afford to live or set up studios. Perhaps it would be best to concentrate on being able to get artists places to live before declaring an arts district.

Colonial Williamsburg

With all the recent comments about CW and the Kimball theatre, I would like to refer those writers to the story of the Little Red Hen. No one was willing to help, but all were ready to enjoy the benefits of someone else's labor. Complaints and criticism aplenty, no offer to actually do something to help. Veiled threats not to frequent shops and sites, pouting about a goose whose golden eggs are smaller, do nothing to help. Entitlement seems to be the culture. If you are genuinely concerned, get out and do something. Remember well what Williamsburg was before the restoration, because that's what it will be if you don't decide to be part of the solution instead of the problem.

As for the Aug. 2 comment about the U.S. Park Service taking over CW — be careful what you wish for. The budget the president has proposed for the Park Service would reduce funding for its historic preservation programs. Historic preservation is a big part of CW's mission. NPS has a huge deferred maintenance liability, far bigger and of longer standing than CW's. It would also have to build a fence to assure that everyone entering the area has paid a fee. Is that really the outcome that would best benefit CW, Williamsburg and the American people?

Come again?

"So many times, you hear about the police shooting everybody and killing half the people." I've never heard that ever reported about any police response here in the U.S. What news media is that person listening to?

Thank you

Thank you, vision therapy and Dr. Kelsey Guth! Our daughter had previous eye exams and was diagnosed with a form of lazy eye and very poor vision without a treatment. We went with our gut and took her to see Dr. Guth, a pediatric optometrist. After four vision therapy sessions, she is gaining vision. This family will be patients for life.

Regarding National Oyster Day article: Wanted to thank Chef Ken at the Fat Tuna Restaurant for his due diligence and concern for the environment. First, let me say the oysters at the Fat Tuna are the best and they sell a ton. I often see the groups of youngsters picking up the shells to return to the bay.

Health insurance

I would hope, if there's any possibility that Republicans and Democrats are going to try and discuss a "new" health care plan, as news reports suggested a special group may do, that one of the first things done is give it a new name, something created by both sides. Drop references to fixing the Affordable Care Act or Obamacare or even Trumpcare, all of which are incendiary names and are guaranteed to keep people separated politically and philosophically. If a bipartisan group can come up with good ideas worth discussing in Congress, then let it be a really fresh start with fresh idea and stop backwards reflections as much as possible. Maybe that way we can find a way to move forward.

Changing parties

To the person who wrote "Changing Parties," my thought is, really? You will opt out of a party based on leadership being an embarrassment? I know my children have been an embarrassment in several seasons of their life, but I stayed by their side, waiting for things to shift and change, which it always did. No reason to jump ship. Even then, if you switched parties, the last administration was the biggest embarrassment in our political history. Again, even then, we stood firm and didn't desert our party.

Military service

I could care less if transgendered people serve in the military. I just don't think the taxpayers should be on the hook for so-called reassignment surgery and hormone treatments. If they want it that badly, let them pay for it. Same thing with private insurance.

Recommended

I recently bought a new laptop with Windows 10, formerly owned a laptop with Windows Vista — there is a vast difference in the two systems. I was having a very difficult time being able to move around and the need to transfer my old files and data. I called "We Fix Computers by Khalid" at 757-291-3663. I was totally amazed at the way Mr. Khalid was able to help me. He converted all my old files and data and transferred them to my new laptop. He was amazing. I encourage anyone who needs help with their computer to call him. You will be very pleased.

We recently had seven trees cut and removed and also had the stumps ground in the front yard of our home in Governor's Land. R.A.Coleman Landscaping and Tree Service, located on Ironbound Road, did the work and we were very pleased with it. They have a knowledgeable and experienced crew and the equipment to do even the biggest jobs. They were quick, efficient and professional.

K&K Electrical scores again, big time. Kevin came within four hours of being called to restore an inoperable, multi-candle chandelier. He quickly analyzed the problem, made repairs, checked his work, restored the area and left. Cannot ask for better than that (our second recommendation for K&K). He can be reached at 757-903-2565 and kkelectricalva@gmail.com.

Too many businesses neglect to realize the power of excellent customer service. One local business knows the value of customer service and provides it in spades. Bruce's Super Body Shop (Richmond Road) has earned my confidence and they have a customer for life, thanks to Michael and Tim.

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