125 years ago
March 18, 1892
At a meeting of the trustees of the Soldiers Pacific Reunion Association, held at Montesano on Friday, Feb. 26th, 1892, it was ordered that public notice be given, that such association was desirous of securing permanent grounds for the purpose of holding thereon their annual reunions, and that propositions from generous owners of suitable land, to donate the same to the association for their use for such annual reunions would be thankfully received.
It is the desire of the association to secure grounds near the ocean beach, and it is also the intention of the association to improve the ground with permanent and suitable buildings to insure the comfort and accommodation of the soldiers and sailors, the sons of veterans and relief corps, who may wish to annually attend the reunions. It is the desire of the association to secure grounds at once and that a selection will be made on or about April 1st, 1892.
100 years ago
March 16, 1917
What promises to be the most elaborate and best staged home-talent musical production ever given in Montesano is billed for the Gem Theater next Monday evening in the “Musical High Jinks.” This entire show is produced, directed and played by home people and if advance tips are worth anything it will be a knockout. The best musical and dramatic talent of the city is enrolled in the cast and Montesano’s best comedians are carrying the heavy comedy roles. The proceeds derived from the show will be used for the benefit of the local Eagles’ band in buying uniforms and music and the citizens should rally to the support of this organization.
During the summer the boys are planning a series of free concerts for the benefit of the city and it is but fitting that our people show their appreciation by attending the benefit performance. It will be worth your money, besides.
In the first act of the musical comedy the scene is laid in the lobby of the Monte Cristo hotel and the curtain goes up on the arrival of the High Jinks show company. The hotel manager likes the looks of the bunch and persuades the show manager to arrange a little entertainment to be staged in the hotel for the amusement of his guests. This act is full of catchy song hits, solos, a chorus of girls and men, fancy dances, jokes, stories and specialty acts by our local comedians and the act closes with a rousing patriotic number by the full chorus.
In the second act the curtain goes up on the entire company in the grill room of the hotel enjoying an after theater supper party. The special features of this act will be the Hawaiian stringed quartette and the Hawaiian choruses, a male quartette and a couple of pleasing solos.
75 years ago
March 19, 1942
Pursuant to orders issued by Donald M. Nelson, head of the war production board restricting service station operation in this state and others to 72 hours a week, all Montesano service stations and garages announced this Thursday that they will suspend gasoline sales on Sundays.
Most of the stations will operate 12 hours a day from Monday to Saturday, inclusive. Individual daily hours may vary somewhat, due to individual circumstances.
At the same time, deliveries of gasoline to stations will be reduced 20 per cent. The restriction is ascribed to difficulties in transportation brought about by the war. Some 100,000 stations on the Atlantic coast and in Washington and Oregon are affected.
50 years ago
March 16, 1967
The Montesano Planning Commission sent a delegate to City Council’s bimonthly meeting Tuesday night, and he left with a pledge that the city fathers intend to follow up on the newly reorganized MPC’s No. 1 recommendation at once.
Roger Turnbull told Council it is his group’s belief that people of the town would be encouraged to make more extensive home repairs if they were not obliged to pay an extensive fee to do so. He said the MPC recommends a flat charge of $5. For repairs, maintenance and upkeep, as opposed to the graduated scale which applies to building permits.
Of course, Turnbull noted, the home survey already begun by Irv Urquhart, city building inspector, must be completed—and kept current—before such a plan would make sense. Unanimously, Council agreed to produce an appropriate ordinance as soon as the survey is finished.
25 years ago
March 12, 1992
The Montesano city council is not convinced there is much public support for a proposal to convert the old sewage treatment plant into a rest stop, and several members of the council said they were opposed to the idea.
The matter came up after councilman C. Farrell Presnell said the people he’s talked to “haven’t been too keen on the idea.” He said it would mean more traffic problems and extra “headaches for the police department.” There’s no point in spending what remains in the city’s engineering budget on feasibility studies if the project is going to be allowed to die, he said. Presnell wanted to know how other councilmembers felt.
Councilwoman Anna Harbell noted that people she’s spoken with are down on the rest stop.
Councilman Richard Stone said there was “no strong general sense from the public” on where to go with the idea.
Mayor A.J. “Jack” Frost told the council that “frankly, I wasn’t eager myself” about the plan, but as mayor, he’d gone along with some of the lobbying private citizens have done to get assistance for the plan from the Department of Transportation.
The council noted that it is mostly downtown businesses which support the idea, especially those represented by the Montesano Chamber of Commerce, which in the past has pushed the idea rather strenuously.
The city has yet to spend any money on the concept. DOT has contributed $5,000 for preliminary work and a meeting to amend the scope of a feasibility study has been set. The city’s ad hoc engineering firm, Skillings &Chamberlain of Lacey, has proposed a $32,000 feasibility study, a price which councilman Robert Woodcock called “more than we want to spend.”
10 years ago
March 15, 2007
The Montesano City Council decided 4-3 yesterday that the status quo is the way to go and the city just isn’t big enough yet to justify hiring a full-time city administrator.
The council also awarded low-bidder Rognlin’s Inc. of Aberdeen the contract to rebuild Main Street from the entrance to Wynooche Avenue and set 7:30 p.m. next Tuesday for a workshop to discuss whether to extend the sewer system outside the city limits to Roup Road.
The city administrator question has been on the table since long-time clerk/controller Sharon Morgan retired last October. When the issue got bogged down with more questions than answers, the council accepted an offer from Jay Sterling to pay for a consultant to help explore the pros and cons.
Last month, the consultant recommended that the city hire a city administrator, saying council members would be pleasantly surprised at the efficiencies such an “umbrella” manager and leader could bring to overall operations. She expressed confidence the additional cost, estimated at $39,000 more per year than the $59,000 the city was paying Morgan at the time of her retirement, would be offset by the resulting savings of more coordination between departments.
Most of the city’s employees signed a petition opposing the proposal and said they favored keeping the clerk/controller position. They agreed with a conclusion that more help is needed in the Public Works Department in particular, but defended the efficiency of the current structure. They said Monte’s not ready yet for a full-time manager and they feared an administrator would become another layer of management further insulating city operations from council members.