Ken Hansen, HPCC Treasurer
Why we Serve…? When Deb and I were looking to retire back to “America” from 30 years on Kodiak Island, Alaska, one of our primary criteria was hopefully finding a strong sense of small-town community similar to the one we were leaving back on “The Rock”. Having set our bulls-eye on the Columbia River Gorge, I will never forget winding up Centerville Highway with our realtor, numbly touring yet another property. I vaguely recall his comments about High Prairie being locally known as a “very special community…etc.…”. I thought blah, blah, blah…
Later that day, our lives took a significant turn when we fell in love with what is now our home. We arrived to our new HP home a very long and emotional year later, actually on Firehouse Sale Day, 2015. Although exhausted and anxious to finally be in our new but empty home, we spent most of that first day at the Community Center, eating Myrin’s famous brats and meeting our new neighbors. Quickly, many became friends. The welcome we received from our immediate neighbors was equally warm and genuine. In short, we feel blessed to be members of such a wonderful and beautiful community, and our hopes were more than exceeded!
Participation with HPCC and local community events has afforded Deb and me an opportunity to express our appreciation for being a part of this amazing community. Little of value in one’s life comes without costs. All of us have something we can contribute towards Community; some can give dollars, some can give labor, and others can give services and time. It ALL is important to help our community operate. In these days of focus on our perceived differences, it may all the more important to try to maintain some focus on what binds us together as a village and a community. That won’t change with political winds and the news cycle…
At a most basic level, a primary unifying issue for all HP residents is fire protection. We have seen many recent examples of our Fire District #14 volunteers ably responding to OUR fire protection and safety needs, as well as those of our neighboring communities. Unfortunately, we have all been touched by last September’s Eagle Creek Fire and have seen the potential of our geography combined with our changing climate and world-famous winds to quickly bring devastating changes to all of our lives. Nonetheless, the fire-protection community limited losses to a couple of outbuildings and NO lives lost. They deserve all of the praise they received. Many of also us watched or had friends/family affected by the devastating fires in California. I sit at my window and hope and pray to NEVER see the view between myself and Mt. Adams blackened for miles…
HPCC strongly serves as an advocate and voice for the needs of our neighborhood and supports our “FireWise Community” efforts. A primary goal of HPCC is providing ancillary funding for the volunteers of Fire District #14. This provides for items such as new safety equipment. This is a goal that ALL High Prairie residents should support.
A belated thank you to Anna Purcell and Deb Hansen for their efforts in (again!) pulling together the Lady’s Tea. Despite last-minute refrigeration failures, they pulled off the event wonderfully. Again, thanks to the many volunteers and donations for this success. This event netted in excess of $600 for HPCC!
The recent efforts of Diane Cazalet and Bill Stallings in conceptualizing and spearheading the hugely successful Quilt Festival is another example of our neighbors seriously stepping up for the community! This was a huge group effort, and I heard so many comments about the wonderful, party atmosphere. THANK YOU to all who made this a success. Preliminary figures indicate this event generated proceeds of over $9,000 (before expenses).
A very special THANK YOU to Doug Taylor! Doug made a very generous donation of $2500 to HPCC for the Quilt Festival! He wanted to express his appreciation for such wonderful neighbors and wanted to associate his gift with Diane and Bill’s generosity to High Prairie.
Please think about how YOU can support HPCC, FD #14 and our community.