Downriver Dispatches

News of Western Wahkiakum County and Naselle


December 23, 2021

The Chadwick family, Christmas Day 1920 with daughter Eleanor, Mrs. Lorena Chadwick, and daughter Margaret in their Knappton home. Notice the electric Christmas lights on the tree. Photo courtesy of Appelo Archives.

Merry Christmas to all and to all a good night! So say we all as the blessed day comes. My prayer is for all travelers and loved ones to arrive safely with their families and have a loving, gentle day of giving and receiving. All the lights are up, I hope, and presents under the tree for the cat to play with. Animals are family, too. I hear snow might be coming. Soon we can settle and just be with friends and family to enjoy the day.

December is full of activities as we prepare for the Big Day; so much so that I hope we save some quiet time for Christmas Eve. The Finnish American Folk Festival (FAFF) folks worked very hard to set up events all month, including the Lighting of the Tree and the "Christmas lights drive" throughout the area last Sunday. Thanks so much to the FAFF folks for all you have done this season. Turning the Congregational Church into the new Community Center is such a good thing you have done for the community. It's become a unique gathering place and it has certainly served the community well during this Christmas season.

To help us move into Christmas Day, the Grays River Methodist Church invites all to their Christmas Eve service at 5:30 tomorrow evening. Their pastor, Keith Hackett, will preside for the service. The church is located at 3624 SR 4 in Grays River. In the 1880's, Methodist services were held in homes until the first Grays River Methodist Church building was built in 1896 in the center of the town of Grays River. The original building was moved later due to flooding, I assume. The current church was built in 1962. It's a lovely building that has seen many marriages, funerals, and Christmas services.

A big thank you to the volunteers who both cook and serve wonderful home-made meals at the Senior Lunch Club's lunches twice monthly at Rosburg Hall. I've had several ask questions about the lunches, so here are some answers. Anyone who has passed 50 and on up, or anyone who just wants to try out the food, is welcome. Upon arrival, each is asked to donate $4 or more in the coffee can at the end of the table for the cost of food. Frieda Footh, Sonja Kruse, Diane Hollenbeck and others do the cooking. Others often offer to do the wash up, and often after the meal, the men sweep and put the chairs and tables where they belong. Some folks drive over from Skamokowa and the sheriff often comes by for lunch which gives folks a chance to talk with him personally. In December, the two lunches each had 45 or more attending. The luncheons are held on the first and third Wednesdays of each month at noon. If you have trouble with stairs, there is a ramp on the west end of the building. It's a friendly group and for many it's a chance to be with others, especially for those of us who live alone, so please come and join us!

Photo of the Week: The Chadwick family, Christmas Day 1920 with daughter Eleanor, Mrs. Lorena Chadwick, and daughter Margaret in their Knappton home. Notice the electric Christmas lights on the tree. The Chadwick Family in Knappton from 1920 shows a typical Christmas more than 100 years ago. The children show their anticipation, and the tree is perhaps the top of a logged tree. We can't be certain where the tree came from but most likely it was free and not $40- $60 as our prices have been recently. Those high prices make Christmas trees a good product to grow and sell, even from our yards!

Schools Report: Knowledge Bowl has started under the leadership of their coach, Summer Johnson. Comets Team earned a 3rd place finish at its first meet against 18 teams. Way to Go, Comets! Remember, school will start again on January 3. So read a book!

Senior Lunches: There were two Lunch Club gatherings in December on the first and third Wednesdays. Each one had over 45 folks attending. The food is excellent and these luncheons are a great way to get out of the house to be with others. Great food and fun! Come join us. In January the Lunch Club will gather on January 5 and 13 at noon at Rosburg Hall. Box lunches will be available every Thursday. Pick yours up at Rosburg Hall. Call Denise at (360) 762-3111 to reserve your box lunch. Today's menu is Creamy Tomato Basil Meatballs, Sweet Potato Blend, Fruit Salad, Cookies, and for December 30: Ham and Cheese over Baked Potato, Spring Blend, Tropical Fruit Salad.

December 24: The Grays River United Methodist Church will hold a Christmas Eve service at 5:30 p.m. on Friday, December 24. All are welcome. Pastor Keith Hackett will preside. The church is located at 3624 SR-4, Grays River.

January 3: School begins.

January 8, 20: 4-H 2022 Kickoff at Johnson Park in Rosburg across from the Grays River store. It's for ages 5 and up. Activities include crafts, baking and robotics projects. No charge for the day and need not be in 4-H to participate. RSVP requested to:

January 10: A standing aerobics class is being offered at Johnson Park starting January 10 at 6 p.m. It's scheduled for Mondays, Wednesdays and Fridays. It is intended more for seniors, but all are welcome. The class is for 30 to 40 minutes and it's free of charge.

January 12: Grays River Enhancement/Diking District meeting at Johnson Park at 5:15 p.m.

Words for the Week from John Lennon and Yoko Ono:

So this is Christmas, And what have you done? Another year over, And a new one just begun.

So this is Christmas. I hope you have fun,

The near and the dear ones, the old and the young.

A very Merry Christmas, And a Happy New Year,

Let's hope it's a good one Without any fear.


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