By Ashley Lodato
For those of you seeking to enter the e-book world, a great way to do it is through the regional library system, which offers free e-book trainings that teach people how to load free library books onto their devices. ( Did I mention that it’s all free?) The Winthrop library’s training will be held from 2-7 p.m. on March 26, in half-hour slots that you can register for. There are a few basic pre-requisites, such as owning a device (Kindle, Nook, or Tablet) and knowing how to turn it on and log in. Talk to Sally at the Winthrop Library if you’d like to sign up.
On Sunday I heard from my good friend and former Outward Bound colleague from Maine, Suzanne Pierce, that as she was gathering for a parade at the Bill Koch Festival in Vermont she was quite surprised to see up ahead of her some kids in Methow Valley Nordic Team (MVNT)jackets. She introduced herself to the coach (Flash Clark) and made the many small world connections you’d expect, including the fact that one of the MVNT skiers (Gretta Scholz), is my next-door neighbor. The MVNT skiers finished in the top tier of racers at the Bill Koch Festival, with the most impressive results being Novie McCabe’s second-place standing in the 4-kilometer classic and Gretta and Novie’s second-place relay finish.
With the upcoming Bite of the Methow, my thoughts turn, naturally, to the Kiwanis members. These guys and gals are most well known for their volunteerism and fundraising, but one of my favorite memories of the past year was being at the Winthrop Barn on the day that the Kiwanians put up the Christmas tree.
The find-and-cut committee had already delivered the tree (sourced from a location whose coordinates they refused to reveal) and it was a giant, even lying on the floor of the Winthrop Barn. Now it was time for the put-’er-up committee to take over.
First, it was determined that the circumference of the tree’s trunk far exceeded the dimensions of the 5-gallon bucket in which it would rest, so two Kiwanis members held the trunk aloft while another hacked away at it with an axe. Much feigning of lost digits and subsequent hilarity ensued, courtesy of John Owen, and the trunk was eventually deemed appropriate for the bucket.
Getting it into an upright position involved non-OSHA-approved ladder use, a block-and-tackle pulley system, and a steady stream of armchair advice from the peanut gallery, which was everyone who wasn’t teetering on the top step of a ladder. The plastic bucket, of course, was no match for the behemoth, and the whole thing swayed precariously while someone scurried down to the river to collect some rocks to weigh the bucket down.
Finally, when the tree work was complete, Bob Stone grew concerned about the patch of ice outside the main entrance and set about salting it — with one of the saltshakers from the condiments tray in the kitchen. Although it was not the most efficient means of melting a patch of ice, it was effective, and probably gave Bob a great bicep workout.
All this is to say that our Kiwanis members work extremely hard for our community, and the Bite is our chance to show them how much we appreciate all of their contributions. Even if you can’t attend the event (Saturday at the Winthrop Barn), you can still contribute to their Fund a Dream campaign, which will help put a new liner in the Wagner Memorial Pool in Twisp.