Reporting from Reedsport
Last week a few of us from Reedsport attended the 2015 Oregon Main Street Conference in The Dalles, and what a time we had! The conference was filled with people representing cities from across the state, and everyone came with one question in mind: “How do I make my community better?” As you might imagine, the atmosphere was electric, crackling with optimism and creativity about how to reinvent, rethink, restore, and revive every aspect of our respective towns. Here are some notes I took:
- Paint can make a big difference, and it doesn’t cost a lot of money.
- 15 to 25 feet wide is plenty for a storefront
- Businesses can find creative ways to collaborate with each other, like the hair salon that gives customers coupons for the restaurant next door.
- In Independence, OR, citizens wanted a fence for their dog park, so they raised $1500 and put one up themselves.
- Everybody has been to Reedsport, but almost everybody struggles to remember something about it. Time for a 50-foot concrete salmon statue?
In my free time I had the good fortune to find books by two early Oregon authors at Klindt’s Bookstore, the oldest bookstore in Oregon (established 1870.) Speaking of old books, did you know that Oregon had libraries before it had statehood? Early pioneers were incredibly literate, and many carried their personal libraries with them on the Oregon Trail. Oregon City opened the first public library in 1846, and Oregonians have been reading ever since. So if you want to celebrate a true Oregon tradition with true pioneer pride, make sure you swing by the Reedsport Public Library’s open house to celebrate its completed renovation this Friday from 4 to 6pm, refreshments and tours included. You can thank our forefathers for starting us off right. – Adapted from the Reedsport Main Street Blog, written by Katie Lockhard, Program Coordinator