Signs of Summer

Jun 10, 2013 | 1 comment

Music Vespers SignIn Oysterville, signs of summer are everywhere.  Mother Nature has decked herself out in full regalia – leafy green, colorful blossoms, apples beginning to set on the trees.  In addition, we residents have added a few signs of our own.

The annual sandwich board sign announcing “Summer Music Vespers, Sundays 3 p.m.” is back in front of the Oysterville Church.  Though it is nestled among the daisies along the fence, it catches the eye and serves as a reminder that the summer season is almost here – the 36th vesper season for those who are counting!

The Music Vespers series is sponsored by the Oysterville Restoration Foundation and is one of the major ongoing fund-raisers for maintenance of the historic church.  For twelve Sundays each summer, musicians and ministers volunteer their time and talents to present a musical worship service to the public.  Admission is free; it’s the money from the collection baskets (last year, $2500!) that support the old building’s on-going upkeep.

First up this year on June 16th will be the “Randal Bays Family Band” – an appropriate beginning to the season since that day is Father’s Day.  Randal, an internationally acclaimed Celtic fiddler has been a featured vesper musician since 1991.  This year his wife, Susan Waters – also an accomplished fiddler – and their sons Willie (aged 10) and Owen (aged 8) will join him for a special Father’s Day presentation.  Whoo-Hoo!  What a way to begin the season!

June 2013 Oysterville Store Meanwhile, at the northwest end of town, a subtle, whispering sort of sign promises the opening of the Oysterville Store.  On the window of the door, in white window paint, is written “Open July 5th.”  Somehow, those enticing almost see-through letters on the glass are the sign-equivalent to a promise whispered in my ear.  Each time I see it – which is every day when I collect my mail from the post office next door – I feel the same thrill of anticipation that I remember feeling as a kid.

In those days, “going up to the store” was a Big Deal.  Going up to the store with a few pennies for candy or a nickel for ‘pop’ was a Huge Deal.  It wasn’t just that money was scarce or that the store was at the far end of Oysterville.  In those days, we (and I’m speaking of the adults in my life at that time, too) had not yet learned to be consumers.  “Buying stuff” just wasn’t part of our day-to-day thought process, so when we kids did get to buy a licorice whip or a bottle of root beer; it was a Red Letter Day.

I have no doubt that there will be many such days for new store owner Greg Rogers when July 5th rolls around.  Anticipation in town is palpable and the carloads of visitors who stop to peep in the windows are a promise of busy summer days – one Red Letter Day after another here in Oysterville!

1 Comment

  1. Stephanie Frieze

    I am so looking forward to both Vespers and the Oysterville Store! This is a great picture of the church. It sounds like the Oysterville Store what Sugarman’s Store in Seaview was to us. I used to walk down the unpaved K Street to get penny candy and have Joe Sugarman wiggle his ears for me. Memories.


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