I once met a taxi driver in Cork (or “Cahk”, as he said with his Irish accent) who passed along this bit of wisdom: “You can change where you live, but you can’t change where you’re from.” I understood what he meant. For many of us, our hometown is our heartwood, our keystone, the fleck of grit around which the pearl of our life takes shape. Is that true for you? Do you feel connected to a place? Whether you are new to town, have been here since you were a glimmer in your parents’ eyes, or now live far away, I hope that Reedsport feels like home.
So would you like to help us out? Vote for us! The Reedsport Main Street Program is taking part in the America's Main Streets Contest, a competition for $25,000 that we’ll use to boost the commercial heart of our town. The online contest is won by popular vote, with one vote allowed every 24 hours. Now’s the time to reach out to our extended circle of friends, our Reeds-Portlanders, and anyone we know who wants to show their support for our community. Can we possibly compete with larger cities? We have until April 24th to try! The link for the contest nomination is here:
Maybe you’re just not feeling it. “Eh, Reedsport,” you say, “Just another little dot on the map, nothing special.” Why not learn more about our history to find out what makes us…us? We’ve kicked off a campaign to try to protect our stories from vanishing into the dust of time. Earlier this month we held our first Community Collection Day, and from the photos, objects, and memories that you brought to us, we launched an online archive, “Share Your History: 100 Years on the Lower Umpqua.” When you visit the site, you can search for items by keyword, date, or contributor. It includes photographs, audio recordings, newspaper articles and much more. This is the goal of our campaign, to protect our history and make it freely available, especially as we approach Reedsport’s centennial in 2019. Check out the young archive here:
This is a community collection, so it’s up to you to make it grow. We’re holding our next Community Collection Day on Friday, May 13th at the Senior Center. This one will be even bigger and better than before! If you have items to bring in, remember that we only copy them – you keep the originals. If you just want to sit down and tell stories, we’d love to record you! And if you want to support this campaign in other ways, we need volunteers to help us capture all of the great memories and materials that will come our way. More details are coming soon, but please contact me now if you know this event is something that interests you.
While we’re basking in the glow of hometown pride, here’s another opportunity to make Reedsport shine. We’re opening the application period for the next round of our Façade Improvement Grant this Friday, April 1st. The application is undergoing its final revision now, but will be available on April 1st at City Hall and on our Facade Improvement Grant page. If you have a business in Reedsport along Highways 101 or 38, want to make an exterior improvement, and can provide a match of funds, material, or labor up to $2500, this grant may be for you!
For those of us here, we are lucky to live in a place like Reedsport, and if you have your doubts, let me share some of the advantages I have found from my world travels: No murderous moose roaming the streets. No skyscrapers blocking the sky. No midday car hijackers. No rush hour. No parasitic insects. No volcanic air that burns your throat and brings all work to a standstill… Yep, we have it pretty good! What are some of your reasons for loving Reedsport?
All the best,
Reedsport Main Street Program Coordinator