Wednesday, August 9, 2017

Square Dancing at the Cranberry Museum

I didn't even know there was such a place as Greyland and that it had a Cranberry Museum. Now I have been educated. 

On August 3, Wayne and I arrived in Greyland, which is just below Westport, the fishing capitol of Washington State (they say) on the western coast of the U.S. The day we drove in, it was still blistering hot and hazy from the fires to the north.
Cranberries on the bush, a few weeks from ripening.

Cranberry fields in Greyland, WA.

Beach walkway to waterline of Pacific O.

Driftwood and native plants.

Unique fencing along Highway 12, Greyland, WA.

The owners of the museum are also the recreators of the Fulford Cranberry harvesting machine, making a new version of a very successful invention to harvest and prune cranberries. Chuck and Gwen Tjernberg have made the museum the focus of both historical and industrial times in Pacific and Grays Harbor counties.

I learned that cranberries do not require being in a bog to grow but that flooding the land they are growing it on makes it easier to do a wet harvest. Coming from Cape Cod, it was an assumption on my part that all cranberries are harvested wet, but the Fulford machine is designed to harvest dry and prune at the same time.

Wayne (tallest one) with dancing friends.
Ocean Spray is a business which is cooperatively owned by the farmers, and berries are classed as being top quality for the fresh market or second quality which used for juices and canning. Last year the top quality berries sold for about 89 cents a pound while the second quality sold for about 30 cents a pound. Most of the berries from the dry harvest have a top quality rating, while wet harvest berries are rated second.

First shipments go to Canada because they celebrate Thanksgiving in October. If there is a late harvest, it can severely impact shipment dates with a domino effect.

We enjoyed the tour that Gwen gave us, enriched with her personal knowledge of the industry.

Later that day we met with long-time friends of Wayne’s, Ann and Les Kilwein, over some lemonade and chips in the RV. When we were packing to go, I never thought about having snacks on hand for guests, but now I know enough to have something available for anyone who might show up.

Square dancing at the Cranberry Museum, Aug. 2017.
RV life is not that different from land-living, but being more close-knit, folks are more likely to share time and adventures over food and dancing. And like sailboat live-aboards, friends are made quickly. 

There does not seem to be a disparity in relationships just because you have a larger or smaller travel home; what is the division appears to be whether you are a weekender or a ‘real traveler’ for longer periods of time. 
Round dancers include caller Randy with Mike and
Marion Freely in the back.
Eventually there comes a time when even the most seasoned of RV travelers has to give up life on the road due to health, family or financial concerns but with the membership in the square dance ‘family,’ gatherings can still happen for that connection of friendship. 

Gwen and Chuck did a skit for the final act of the three-part weekend, poking fun at all the retirees with getting-ready-for-bed issues... putting the cat out, locking the doors, etc. with the group getting a big laugh at the end. It was a lot of fun!!
Chuck gets up (again) to fulfill Gwen's bedtime request.
This is what has been happening at this camp-out; folks that Wayne had not seen for years came to share in pot-luck and/or dancing and he appeared to have enjoyed greatly renewing those friendships.

No comments:

Post a Comment