Former Laurelwood Elementary School Re-opens as LACE Center

May 01, 2012 | Richard Salsbery

The old Laurelwood (Ore.) Elementary School has received a facelift with cleaning, remodeling and a new purpose: to build a bridge of friendship in the local community. It was also renamed the LACE (Laurelwood Adventist Community Education) Center. The facility will be a resource for the community and an outreach for the Laurelwood and Gaston (Ore.) churches, which sponsor the center. As the pun goes, LACE will "tie" the community together.

The churches are working together to make LACE a friendly, community ministry and a neutral place where friendships can be built with neighbors.

More than 50 people, including many non-members, attended an open house held Feb. 5. Six people requested Bible studies because of the event, which included Caroline Salsbery, LACE director, describing the changes that have been made at the LACE Center and how it will be used to benefit the whole community.

Other presenters included Norma Turner, LACE board chairwoman; Ken Bilderback, author of Creek With No Name: How the West was Won (and Lost) in Gaston, Oregon; Judy Schierholz, who leads an exercise class two days a week; and Chris Baidenmann, who demonstrated dog toys she makes from excess materials and sells to help support the Gift of Love project for local foster children.

Current and future activities include bread making, gluten-free cooking, Ask the Dietician, a women's Bible-study class, aerobics, exercise machines, a bell choir, quilting and a lending library. The facilities are also available for personal events, family reunions, and other items which are in the planning stages.