Pretty Good Harvest Of Blackberries This Year

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P/S columnist Jodee Smith says it looks like the next two or three weeks should produce a pretty good blackberry harvest.

Well the blackberries are just starting to ripen and with all the rain we’ve had this summer, there sure are a lot of them. It looks like the next two or three weeks should produce a pretty good harvest if you’ve got a patch you like to frequent — what a contrast from last year when the dry streams really limited production.

My kids took about two days to finish an entire jar of jam, so we’ll probably have to go out again soon or I won’t have any left for gifts.

If you’ve never gone blackberry picking before, be sure to wear long pants, long sleeves, and good shoes — otherwise you’ll end up looking like you went through a paper shredder multiple times.

The PSWID’s next meeting is at 1 p.m., tomorrow, Aug. 21 at the Cultural Hall in Pine. There is a lot happening with the vote to purchase the Strawberry Hollow Well and election of the new chairman Gary Lovetro, so if you have the opportunity, be sure to attend.

The Pine Library Friends will meet at 1 p.m., Monday, Aug. 23 in the library activity room located just behind the Cultural Hall in Pine. Guest speaker Toni Sorel will discuss her recent trip to Italy where she took cooking lessons from an Italian chef. The event is open to the community and refreshments will be served — (maybe Toni will share an authentic Italian treat!).

The AWANA’s program has begun and this year the Sparks program has adjusted their program for K/second-graders by moving their start time to 2:30 p.m. in order to allow children to attend immediately after school. They also have their church van available to pick up kids from the school at 2:15 as well. Parents will need to obtain permission slips for both the AWANA’s program and in order to ride the van. The AWANA’s program is sponsored by the First Baptist Church in Pine.

The Isabelle Hunt Memorial Public Library hosts a story time for children between 2-1/2 and 5 years of age every Wednesday between 10:15 a.m. and 11:15 a.m. There is a new theme each month and children have an opportunity to learn while having fun playing games, making art, singing, listening to stories, and meeting new friends.

The library is also hosting a series of eight art classes for home-schooled students beginning Sept. 8 at the library activity room. These free classes are taught by Robyn Bossert and are open to children ages 5 and up.

The library is currently planning events to coincide with the Pine-Strawberry Elementary School’s fall break in October. In addition to the Movie Madness days, they will have special art classes for all age groups. I will list the details in the next column so you can take advantage of these wonderful programs.

The Senior Center will have a potluck followed by bingo games at 5 p.m., Friday, Aug. 27 in the senior dining room behind the thrift store. They encourage you to bring “whatever you like to cook!”

The folks at the Justice McNeeley Foundation are gearing up for their annual Quad Run at the Rimside Grill. This year’s run will take place on Oct. 9 (mark your calendars now), and will include both live and silent auctions, a raffle, volleyball and horseshoe tournaments and lots of games for the kids.

The Pine-Strawberry Fuel Committee (PSFR) reports that the clearing of the Krebs property has been completed. You may remember that this 40-acre parcel in the heart of Pine was one of the projects the PSFR board chose to help clear using a 90/10 grant that they had received. Now instead of being a potential entrance point for a wildfire, the property is part of an important buffer (along with the firebreaks that surround our towns) to safeguard our communities. Thanks to Walt Smith and all of the other PSFR committee members for the tireless work they do for Pine and Strawberry.

That’s it for Pine and Strawberry happenings, hope you have a great week!

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