Serenity House marks building's 125th year with picnic, ice-cream social on Saturday
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Keith Thorpe/Peninsula Daily News
The Serenity House Thrift Store in Port Angeles will celebrate the 125th anniversary of the former church building this weekend with a picnic and ice-cream social.

Peninsula Daily News

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PORT ANGELES — An old-fashioned picnic and ice-cream social will follow a ceremony recognizing the 125th year of the first church building in Port Angeles, which is now the Serenity House Thrift Store, on Saturday.

The celebration begins at 11 a.m. at the thrift store at 502 E. First St. at First and Vine streets, and will move by noon to Webster Park at Third and Eunice streets.

The brief ceremony at the thrift store will celebrate the $55,000 renovations done to the building recently, especially the preservation and protection of the roof.

“It will be a ceremony to recognize the hard work that went into the reroofing project,” said Scott Price, business manager for Serenity House.

“We had very broad community support,” he said, noting that Brad Collins, who recently retired from Serenity House and who is the city deputy mayor, was in charge of the project.

After the ceremony, the celebration will move to the park for a free picnic with ice cream, live music and games.

Prizes for best picnics

“It's an old-fashioned picnic,” said Jim Moran, president of Celebrate Heritage Inc. of Port Angeles, with prizes for the best picnics.

“We're encouraging people to bring their own blankets and food,” Moran said.

No food will be provided at the park except for lemonade and ice cream, he said.

Instead, “we're going to be judging the best picnic spread and best picnic basket and give prizes for the best,” Moran said.

Haywire will play live music from noon to about 2 p.m.

Three-legged races and burlap sack races are planned, with prizes for the winners.

“It's a celebration of our history and past,” Moran said.

“This is something that people did.”


The celebration will be sponsored by First Federal, Serenity House and Celebrate Heritage Inc., which was formed in November 2012 to “keep alive the heritage of Port Angeles and the Clallam County area through interactive events,” Moran said.

The ceremony at the thrift store will mark the 125th anniversary of the building, built in 1889 as a congregational church.

The structure is believed to be the last remaining nonresidential building constructed by the Puget Sound Cooperative Colony, Kathy Wahto, executive director of Serenity House, has said.

The church became Independent Bible Church in 1937. The building was sold in 1975 and has been occupied by Realtors, a computer firm and a bakery.

Serenity House Thrift Shop moved into the former church in 2002, and Serenity House purchased the property by 2004, with store profits going to help end homelessness in Clallam County, Wahto said.

Last modified: September 12. 2013 10:40PM
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