October 16, proclaimed by the Warsaw Town Council as “Tommy Robbins Day,” featured a reading by the noted author of passages from his 11th and latest book, “Tibetan Peach Pie.” an autobiography which highlights his youth in the Warsaw/Northern Neck area.
This event, sponsored by the Rappahannock Community College/Richmond County Public Library, was Robbins’s first public appearance in Warsaw since he graduated from high school in 1949. To mark the occasion, council member Dr. William Washington presented him with a framed copy of the proclamation.
Approximately 130 people came to RCC for the reading on the 16th, followed by a question-and-answer period and book signing during which Robbins conversed with his admirers, posed for photos, and autographed books and jars of mayonnaise. An enthusiastic mayonnaise fan, Robbins has said that for his last meal he would like a red-ripe tomato, with mayonnaise, on Wonder Bread. As a tribute to this preference, library staff members arranged a table at Robbins’s elbow that held all three of his favorites.
On October 17, Robbins addressed a luncheon given by the Friends of the RCC/Richmond County Library at St. John’s Church in Warsaw. FOL members were delighted to hear him speak on a different subject: “Language Is Not the Frosting, It’s the Cake.”
Although most of the audience members on both occasions were Warsaw residents, some came from as far away as Richmond, northern Virginia, Maryland, Pennsylvania, and West Virginia. Two special attendees were Robbins’s wife, Alexa, and his eldest son, Rip.
In addition, two of Robbins’s classmates from the former Warsaw (now Rappahannock) High School — Frances Bell Carter and Barbara English Walker — were present at both programs.