Garden beds take root at Neskowin Valley School
Open house set for retiring librarian Theresa Roberts
NESKOWIN VALLEY SCHOOL students received six garden beds assembled from recycled
plastic lumber from Tillamook County Solid Waste on April 3.
Garden beds take root at NVS
Thanks to an award from Tillamook County Solid Waste Department, six new garden beds are taking root at Neskowin Valley School. Delivered to the students by Solid Waste staff on April 3, the garden beds were the award for collecting mountains of plastics and Styrofoam for the annual America Recycles Day collection held in November of 2016.
“We hold this, or a similar collection, every November,” says Sue Owens, who coordinates the collection. “It’s our way to help schools earn things they want or need while raising awareness about recycling — all in the name of fun.”
Other schools who won garden beds are South Prairie (4), Nestucca Valley Early Learning Center (1), Tillamook Headstart (1), East Elementary (2) and Tillamook Jr. High (1). All of the garden beds were assembled from recycled plastic lumber by Master Recyclers John Goertzen and Roger Miller.
On hand to accept the beds for Neskowin Valley School were Executive Director Kelly Ellis, staff and students, and Farm-to-School program staff.
“We are so excited to help the schools earn garden beds and that they are now partnering with the Farm to School program to grow things for the school.” Owens says. “It’s rewarding to partner with other organizations to better benefit the schools.”
According to Rachel Petit, program coordinator for Food Roots Farm to School, this program will provide gardening-focused, after school programming this spring using the new garden beds. Students will have the opportunity to explore soil, seeds and plants through hands-on, outdoor activities.
“We are very supportive of our local schools and are open to conversations about other recycling educational ideas and possibilities,” added David McCall, program manager for Tillamook County Solid Waste. “If you have an idea please contact Sue or me.”
For more information about America Recycles Day activities, visit visit www.co.tillamook.or.us/gov/solidwaste or contact Owens at 503-842-3419, ext. 3104.
Photo by Tim Hirsch
THERESA ROBERTS, who has served as South Tillamook County librarian for almost seven years, will be honored at a community open house celebrating her retirement Friday, April 28, noon-5 p.m.
Loving Your Librarian
After nearly seven years of service, South Tillamook County librarian Theresa Roberts is ready to take her final bow and the community is invited to thank her for her service during an open house on Friday, Apil 28, noon-5 p.m. at the library.
The celebratory event will feature complimentary refreshments and plenty of time to greet the always friendly Roberts with a smile and a wish for good luck in the future.
After 16 years working in school libraries at Newberg School District and Nestucca Valley School District — the last six at Nestucca — Roberts came to the Tillamook County library system in October 2010 eager to check off one more item on her bucket list. Following a year’s worth of being mentored, she took over the reins at Pacific City’s library.
“I’ve always wanted to work for a (public) library,” she says. “I was really excited when the opportunity arose.”
She pointed to her experience in schools as pivotal to gaining a quick understanding of the library’s needs, noting that she was able to apply lessons learned during her tenure in public schools.
Her contributions to South Tillamook County Library have been many. Together with her team, she helped introduce many new programs including the “Mother Goose” weekly story time for children, a revitalized teen program, and, most recently, an adult program.
“I’m glad we were able to develop the teen program here,” Roberts says. “I wanted a good safe place that teens could come to that’s supervised because there’s nothing else for teens to do in Pacific City.”
Adding programs, though, was just a part of what Roberts has done to keep the library humming. She has also been tasked with a lot of research, meaning she’s done everything from finding obscure books for patrons to selecting books for the libraries. Roberts also has been responsible for making sure that everything is up to date and that that the library has what people are looking for.
“We’re trying to meet the community’s needs,” she says. “We’ve done a lot of things since I came here. We’ve added art, a computer and fish tank in the children’s room and more space for young teens.”
She counts amongst the biggest thing she’s learned during her tenure here is just how “wonderful” the people in this community are.
“I made some really wonderful friends here, and we shared a lot over the counter,” she says. “I’m going to miss that a lot. That’s what made me realize that the library is more than about books. It’s about the people.”
Roberts also points to her time with the youth of the community as a highlight.
“I loved working with the kids the most,” she says. “It’s wonderful when they come in the library — particularly the babies — and they want you to read to them. When little kids come in and they’re excited to be in the library and you’re helping them to find books to read, that has to be the most rewarding part — to see that you’re creating new readers that love books. I just feel that babies being exposed to literature is so important because it helps them be better readers and it develops a close relationship with their parent or caregiver who comes with them.”
Though she’s retiring as full-time librarian, she doesn’t plan on being a stranger. For the next year or two, she plans to fill in as a paid retiree at both the Pacific City and Tillamook main branch. Roberts says she’ll also fill her time volunteering for the school district and developing her art and writing skills.
“I hope the community sees how much this library is used and how important it is,” she says. “If I can leave knowing people understand how much it is used and how important all the things we’ve done are — especially for children and teens — then I feel like we did a good job.”
South Tillamook County Library is located at 6200 Camp St., Pacific City. For more information, call 503-965-6163.
Note: The date of the open house in the printed edition of the paper was incorrect. The open house will held on Friday, April 28 and not on Saturday, April 29 as published in the print edition. We apologize for any inconvenience caused by the error.