Ellen Steen

Ellen Steen

Belated kudos to several individuals in Cape Meares who filled in for Elks members on the Christmas food basket project. Sue Drafahl, an Elks member, was organizing the effort to bring food baskets to low-income folks in Tillamook and had to call on some neighbors here in Cape Meares to pull it off. Turns out that several Elks members had had to cancel their participation due to illness or bad weather, so non-Elks Kathy Burke, Diondra Gordon and Sue Beckman pitched in to wrap presents and/or deliver 52 baskets. That’s some holiday spirit; thank you, ladies! Sue Drafahl will be heading up the project again next year; let her know if you’d like to help.

Visitors and residents of Cape Meares braved the rain to come to the annual Cape Meares Community Association’s (CMCA’s) New Year’s Eve party and silent auction. There were lively conversations among new and old friends as well as tasty treats. The top auction item this year was home window cleaning by Mike Smith, followed by lunch for two with Commissioner Mary Faith Bell and the “Love in the Mist” handmade quilt sewn by eight Cape Meares women. This event was a fundraiser for CMCA; thanks to all who participated and a big thank-you to Bev Stein for organizing it.

You won’t want to miss this! A new documentary on the city of Bayocean will appear on Oregon Public Broadcasting (OPB) Jan. 16 at 8:30 p.m. Jules Gilfillam is the reporter who did painstaking research for “Lost City of Bayocean,” including sorting through many pictures and conducting numerous interviews with old-timers who remember the city that is buried under the sand. Sharon and Perry Reeder Jr. were among the honored senior citizens interviewed for the program. In fact, Mr. Reeder himself wrote a book about Bayocean. His book, entitled “Memories Beneath the Sand,” is available on Amazon; I just ordered a copy. The city of Bayocean, the so-called “Atlantic City of the West,” is an endlessly fascinating topic of conversation here in Cape Meares. One still occasionally finds an artifact from the old site. Years ago, we found a whiskey flask at the foot of the big dune on the spit. The cap was rusty, but there was no pelagic growth on it; we think it’s from the city of Bayocean. One can also still find pieces of the old road aggregate after a good winter’s storm churns up the sand. Thank you, Mrs. Reeder, for alerting our readers to the upcoming documentary.

There have been some interesting beach sightings recently. BJ Byron saw dozens of jellyfish scattered across the sand like pancakes for a mermaid’s breakfast. Kathy Burke saw an 18-inch, big-eyed ugly fish that turned out to be a ratfish (appropriately named, she thought). I checked with a fisherman and found out he had caught surf perch as large as two pounds off the beach. It’s true what the ad says: Life is better at the beach.

Happy New Year to all! Surely 2020 will be a lucky number.

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