Avola residents are still waiting for access to the Thompson-Nicola Regional District-owned old Avola log schoolhouse/community hall.
At a Thompson Headwaters services committee (THSC) meeting in Blue River on Jan. 21, it was learned that interior renovations to the schoolhouse soon will be finished and residents allowed back in.
From June to September, exterior renovations prevented residents from accessing the building.
In October a survey made input regarding the interior possible and the THSC voted to accept the residents’ recommendations. Volunteers removed cases of books and furnishings to allow for interior renovations to begin. There were hopes for the community’s traditional Christmas festivities within the one-room-schoolhouse.
As Christmas neared, enquiries were made and permission was denied.
Fortunately, Larry Meidinger, owner of the Log Inn Pub, made his large room available for several Christmas gatherings.
The annual community potluck dinner was hosted at the Pub on Dec. 7 and was attended by over 20 residents and guests. Monty Lutz led a blessing. Lisa Leger read a heart-touching poem about how welcoming the stranger is welcoming the Christ. The decorations by Daisy Sun and Eleanor Deckert made for a colourful environment.
A winter solstice bonfire on Dec. 21 at the riverside was attended by 15, including our newest Avola addition: Bob and Colleen Jensen’s grandson, Alexander.
Christmas Eve worship was also held at the Pub. The story of Jesus’ birth was presented through a slideshow, narration and hymns. Conversation and refreshments made for a memorable evening.
Without a community hall, the winter stretches on without activities to look forward to.
A petition was prepared asking for better maintenance on the highway.
Avola Book Club took a break during December but is meeting again on Wednesday afternoons.
Faye Lutz has offered to teach how to spin and knit in her home on Thursdays.