Chinook School gym repairs coming this spring

<I>Contributed photo</I><BR>Laura Osborne, FOCS Board Member, accepts a check for $2,500 for the Chinook School renovation project from Dwight Eager of Bell Buoy Crab Co., Inc. Company owners include Eager, Steve Gray, Dean Ellsworth and Jim Kemmer.

CHINOOK - Thanks to successful fundraising events, memberships, donations and a generous grant from the Templin Foundation, Friends of Chinook School are moving forward with plans to replace the Chinook School gymnasium roof and place the building on a new foundation. These critical repairs will begin this spring.

FOCS, a non-profit 501(c)3 organization, obtained a 33-year lease on the property in April 2007 from the Port of Chinook. The board and membership has worked cooperatively for the past five years with many entities to save these historic buildings, raise funds for restoration work and develop plans for community use.

"FOCS board is excited that work will soon begin on the gymnasium," FOCS's Eilene Wirkkala said. "We know community members have been patiently waiting this news."

Asked what is next, Wirkkala replied: "FOCS has submitted for additional grants for completion of the gymnasium and are in the process of submitting grants to start the school building renovation. We will continue with our fundraising activities and seek help in the form of monetary donations and in-kind contributions of services and materials. Also important to the project are volunteers who might help us with a number of tasks from improving the grounds to keeping up with the maintenance of the buildings."

Friends of Chinook School will be hosting an open house sometime this spring or summer. The Oktoberfest Dinner and Auction will be held Oct. 28.

If you are interested in helping FOCS with their project, please write to them: Friends of Chinook School, P.O. Box 243, Chinook, WA 98614.

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