It’s that time of year when grapes are ripening, and tomatoes and squash are just about at the end of their life cycles. We’re busily cleaning up the garden beds and preparing for the end of the growing season, while coping with those sometimes not-so-gentle autumn breezes that bring yet another crop of fir and pinecones onto lawns and driveways and sidewalks.

October brings us the Soup and Pie Sale at the Monmouth Senior Center, which is scheduled for Oct. 19, from 11 a.m. until 1:30 p.m. Here’s your opportunity to enjoy a bowl of fresh, homemade soup for $3.50 and a slice of pie for $2.50, and share in what’s been a community tradition for several years. A hardworking team of dedicated volunteers, including my friends Phyllis Harriman and Angie Amos, have made sure this wonderful event runs smoothly for many years. This year’s soups include vegetable beef, chicken noodle, clam chowder, salmon chowder and split pea. Full disclosure: Over the years, I’ve tasted every one of these delicious soups and chowders, and they are awesome. Considering the soups and pies come from the kitchens of some of the best cooks in MI Town, that should be no surprise. Pie selections are equally tasty and are made with love and expertise. Some pies are made from backyard apples, peaches and other fruits that have been homegrown, and all are delicious.

Senior Center Director Sue Teal will be retiring in a few months, so this sale is as nostalgic and bittersweet as can be. Let’s all mark Oct. 19 on our calendars in big, red letters. This year, nobody wants to be the one to forget and miss out on all the good things offered right in our community, and to get together with friends and family.

Our Western Oregon University Wolves host the Central Washington University Wildcats Saturday at 1 p.m. Let’s all keep our fingers crossed for a cool and crisp day of winning football. See you there.

Since Halloween is happening during October, we’ve all been busy with decorations, new recipes and tempting treats for those little (and big) ghosts and goblins who will soon be coming to our doors for goodies. There will be kid-oriented programs at both Independence and Monmouth libraries, where everyone can count on having lots of fun and treats galore. Special thanks to the library workers and volunteers who take the time and energy to be sure these activities are the best they can be. Funding for many of these special events is made possible by contributions from the Friends of the Independence and Friends of the Monmouth libraries.

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