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6/24 Mi Town: Patty Taylor Dutcher

School's out for the summer and MI Town's libraries have excellent activity programs available for kids of all ages, including both indoor and outdoor events and an adult book group. Call the Independence Library at 503-838-1911 or the Monmouth Library at 503-838-1932 for more information, or check the their Web sites at www.ci.monmouth.or.us or www.ci.independence.or.us.

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When was the last time you enjoyed an afternoon at the museum?

One of MI Town's hidden treasures is the Jensen Arctic Museum, located on our Western Oregon University campus. It is open Wednesdays through Saturdays from 10 a.m. until 4 p.m.; admission is $2 for adults, $1 youth. For more information: 503-838-8468.

The Polk County Museum, located on Highway 99W by the Polk County Fairgrounds, is also open Wednesday through Saturday from 1 to 5 p.m. Admission is $3 for adults, $2 for seniors, and $1 for youth. For more information: 503-623-6251.

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The Independence Farmers Market is a great first stop on Saturday morning, with a wonderful selection of food and produce for everyone. The market is open from 9 a.m. until 1 p.m. in the Sterling Savings Bank lot on Main Street. It's a fun place to greet friends and neighbors and choose good things for your family to enjoy for the upcoming week.

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Mark your calendars and don't miss this great yearly event. The Friends of the Independence Public Library will be holding a used book sale Friday, July 3, and Saturday, July 4, from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. Treasures available include a large selection of fiction, mystery, westerns, LP records, videos, books on tape, old books, cookbooks, garden books and more. The Old Independence Library building is located at 311 Monmouth Ave. For more information: Betty Plude, 503-838-4039; Independence Library, 503-838-1811.

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How about lunch with friends in one of MI Town's restaurants, followed by a leisurely afternoon art gallery visit? The River Gallery is located at 184 S. Main St. in Independence (503-606-9717) and nearby is the 205 South Main Gallery (503-838-6171). There's always something new and interesting to see and share on a summer afternoon.

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The Friends of the Independence Library and the Friends of the Monmouth Library are seeking new members. The Friends provide funding for many library projects that aren't funded in the regular budget process, and there are always interesting projects to become involved with. Please stop by either library to learn more about really getting involved with various fun and interesting projects.

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We wait all year to enjoy Oregon strawberries and raspberries, and this year they seem to be especially good. There's nothing better than our local berries served over warmed shortcake on a summer day.

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