Hidden behind the bushes in the middle of our town, great things are happening. Have you seen it? Reedsport native Vic Schaaf and her band of energetic youth have come down from Salem to install some amazing new playground equipment in Lions Park. It’s wonderful that such a large group would travel so far and work through the rain just to give this as a gift to the children of our town! They’ll be working out there until Saturday afternoon, so make sure you swing by to say “Thank you!” And if you want to show it instead of saying it, they need the help of a few adults to do some tasks that are a bit too much for the kids, like holding poles in place.
It’s always encouraging to receive outside support for things happening in our community. With that in mind, the Reedsport Main Street Program would like to give a huge thank you to the Kinsman Foundation for awarding us a $4,000 grant towards our Steam Donkey Preservation Project. Our historic steam donkey, Machine No. 36, is an important memorial to the logging industry on which Reedsport was founded and one of the few machines of its kind in the state. It’s high time we give it a little TLC. In the first phase of this project, the steam donkey will be treated and painted to protect it from further decay, work done thanks to the generous help of Fred Wahl Marine Construction and other people in our community who are passionate about preserving our heritage. We appreciate the support that the Kinsman Foundation has given us in order to accomplish this. Read more about the project at: reedsportmainstreet.com/steam-donkey-preservation.html
Thank you to everyone who participated in last week’s Saint Patrick’s Day Trivia Challenge & Pub Crawl! Everyone looked like they were having a great time, and even though we never could find some actual Irish music (country western is pretty close, right?) nevertheless there was a bit of Irish jig dancing. Special thanks to Kathleen, Joe, and CDABA for organizing and running the event – not an easy thing to pull off!
Someone was asking me about the timeline for engraved bricks, so here’s some clarification about that. We had to work with many different people to figure out logistics, and these conversations took a long time. Now that we know exactly where and how to place the bricks in the downtown sidewalk, new bricks should start appearing out there much faster. Once the engraving company receives a minimum number of orders, it takes about three to four weeks for the bricks to arrive, extra time for replacements if any have been damaged in shipping (this has only happened once), and then a wait until Public Works finds a break in their busy schedule to install them. It’s not a speedy process, but our volunteers are doing their best to get it done right. You can’t rush something you want to last forever, and we expect these bricks to last about as long as anything can in Reedsport! I’ll be sending out updates about brick orders from now on, so place your order today and follow your brick’s journey from a factory in Ohio to a engraver in Florida to the streets of our community. (Truly a well-travelled little block of clay!)
Here are some dates for your calendar: Next Tuesday, March 29th, we’re holding a debriefing for the volunteers who helped us with the Community Collection Day for our history archive. If you would like to help out with our next collection event in May, feel free to join us at 4pm in the conference room at City Hall as we review our first event. Our Design Committee will meet at 5:15pm on Thursday, April 7th. They’ll be meeting at a different location, and because the venue is quite small they ask that you RSVP if you would like to attend as a guest. Please call or email me for more info. The Promotion Committee next meets at 5:30pm on Tuesday, April 12th, at the Waterfront Restaurant. The Economic Development Committee will meet at 5pm on Wednesday, April 13th, in the conference room at City Hall. As always, guests are more than welcome to attend. Visit a few times, and you may find that you’ve become a member.
Last night a long-distance cyclist pulled off to the side of the highway to make a phone call was bemused when I came running through the landscaping, waving my arms at him. Reedsport’s trying to be bicycle friendly, I explained, and what can we do that would make our town more welcoming? Turns out he was Seattle, had biked down on 101, and was spending the night in a Reedsport hotel. We chatted about some of the things that long-distance cyclists need (showers always top the list!), and he left having learned about the Main Street Program and hopefully thinking a little better of our town. Just like seeing the first robin in spring, it appears that our cycling season has begun. Let’s show them a good time. . . you never know what stories they’ll take back home!
Until next time,
Reedsport Main Street Program Coordinator