Vaughn Library Hall restoration, fuchsias, bluejays and other signs of a KP spring

Excavation for new foundations in front of the Vaughn Library Hall.
Excavation for new foundations in front of the Vaughn Library Hall. Courtesy

Construction to restore the Vaughn Library Hall has begun. The Key Peninsula Historical Society has raised enough funds in its capital campaign to begin Phase 1, repairing the building’s foundations and exterior wall framing.

Work began in early April, and the first concrete was poured recently. As soon as additional funds are available, the focus will be on making the building secure and weather tight.

Using historical photographs, they will replicate the original windows, doors and siding. Then restoration of the interior will begin. Originally built in 1893, with additions in 1910 and 1926, it was the first community hall built on the peninsula and the only one left standing. It is listed on both the Pierce County Historic Register and the Washington State Register of Historic Buildings.

“We’re pleased with our progress so far but we have a long way to go” said Paul Michaels and Bart Wolfe, project coordinators for the Historical Society. “We’re hoping the community will help us reach our overall funding goal so we can complete this important restoration.”

Information on donating can be found at or by stopping by the museum from 1-4 p.m. Tuesday and Saturdays.

Lakebay Fuchsia Society’s annual sale of fuschias of varying sizes and kinds, along with other plants, begins 10 a.m. on May 3 and will be open until 4 p.m. On May 4, hours are 9 a.m. to 4 p.m. or until they run out of plants.

May 4 also is the annual Livable Fair at the KP Civic Center, 10 a.m. to 3 p.m. Local nonprofit organizations are showcased, with information about their services and resources. A few have items to share or sell.

Music will be provided by KP Middle School Jazz Band, 10-11a.m.; Bluegrass Minstrells, noon to 1 p.m.; Vaughn Elementary Xylophones, 2-2:20 p.m.; and Vaughn Choir, 2:30-3 p.m.

KP library services will have its “Imagination Playground” outside, a system that encourages learning, social development, movement and fun for all.

The bookmobile will be there, and the bloodmobile from Cascade Blood Services. Touch a Truck from the fire department for the kids, too.

The Museum hosts an open house and invites all to visit the current exhibit, “Cackleberries, Humbleberries and Hootch,” showcasing how people made a living a century ago. Some activities for kids, and many books for sale.

Graduations approach, and many of our high school seniors receive scholarships from local organizations. This year I’ll present one from the KP Historical Society at Peninsula High School. It’s special for me, as I received scholarships to help me go to college when I graduated from Peninsula 65 years ago!

Key Singers present their spring concert May 19 at 3 p.m. in McColley Hall, KP Lutheran Church, junction of Lackey Rd and Key Peninsula Highway. Titled “Never Let Go of Your Dream,” after one of the musical pieces, there will be a variety of music, including some special individual performances. Cabaret seating, light refreshments, $6 ticket donation.

At 6 p.m. that evening, the Bluegrass Gospel Jam session will be held at the Longbranch Community Church. This will be the last one until September. Bring an instrument if you play, sing along or just enjoy the music. We break in the middle for potluck snacks and run until 8:30.

I finally saw a baby bluejay! Two jays arrived on the deck rail, and the slightly larger one fed the other! I couldn’t believe it was a parent feeding a baby as it was nearly the same size! As soon as the food was in the young jay’s mouth, they both flew off.

Outside are wildlife — sea lions, gulls, migrating geese — and a cormorant on a buoy.