2008.06.11 Mary Gautz

Written by David Green.

I just wanted to publicly thank Liz Stella as she retires from Stair Public Library for her many years of service, leadership, creativity and vision. One of the best and finest things about living in Morenci is the library. We just love it and her. And we owe her our deepest, most sincere thanks for her personal role in developing it into the cultural, educational, creative, literary and social heart of Morenci.

When we moved here 12 years ago Stair Public Library was much different. A very small, dark, damp building with a fraction of the books, computers, staff, operating hours and services that we enjoy today. But one thing that was the same was Mrs. Stella. She was the light with her friendly welcomes, gentle kindness to all, and creative ideas and leadership.

After years of hard work, tremendous vision, common sense, dedication, grant writing, automating and updating, good luck and opportunity, our library is one of the best in the county. It has grown and it has blossomed. It is truly one of our community treasures.

She created this, but she gives it back to us, in large and small ways every day. She has made us feel that it truly belongs to all of us. We have all been invited and welcomed. Young or old, students and retirees, families or singles. We have seen and experienced Red Hats, barns and more barns, book discussions, authors, VolunTeens, artists, musicians, entertainers, educators, towers made of fruit, candy houses. We have laughed. We have read. The kids have made messes. We were fed.

Liz Stella has left us an amazing gift, legacy, and example of leadership and commitment. I could go on and on, but I don’t need to. Her game, her library, speaks for itself. Thank you so very much. You did a good thing here. We will miss you tremendously.

– Mary Gautz

Oak Street, Morenci

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    LATEST CRAZE—David Cortes (left) and Ty Kruse, along with Jerred Heselschwerdt (standing), consult their smartphones while engaging in the game of Pokémon Go. The virtual scavenger hunt comes to life when players are in the vicinity of gyms, such as Stair District Library, and PokéStops such as the fire station across the street. The boys had spent time Monday morning searching for Pokémon at Wakefield Park.
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    on your mark, get set, drum!—Drew Joughin (black shirt), Maddox Joughin and Kaleea Braun took the front row last week when Angela Rettle and assistants led the Stair District Library Summer Reading Program kids in a session of cardio drumming. The sports and healthy living theme continued yesterday with a Mini Jamboree at Lake Hudson State Park arranged by the Michigan Department of Natural Resources. Next week’s program features the Flying Aces Frisbee show.
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    NADIYA YORK and Aniston Valentine take a spin on the Casino, one of the rides offered at Wakefield Park during Morenci’s Town and Country Festival. This year’s festival remained dry but with plenty of heat during the three-day run. Additional photographs are inside this week’s Observer.
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    Angela Davis (2) and teammate Allison VanBrandt break into a jig after Morenci's softball team won its third consecutive regional title.
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    ART PARK—A design created by Poggemeyer Design Group shows a “pocket art park” in the green space south of the State Line Observer building. The proposal includes a 12-foot sculpture based on a design created by Morenci sixth grade student Klara Wesley through a school and library collaboration. A wooden band shell is located at the back of the lot. The Observer wall would be covered with a synthetic stucco material. City council members are considering ways to fund the estimated $125,000 project and perhaps tackling construction one step at a time.
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    WRECKAGE—Morenci Fire Department member Taylor Schisler walks past the smoking wreckage of a semi-truck tractor on the north side of the Norfolk and Southern Railroad tracks on Ranger Highway. The truck trailer was on the south side of the tracks
  • Funcolor
    LEONIE LEAHY was one of three local hair stylists who volunteered time Friday at the Morenci PTO Fun Night. Her customer, Aubrey Sandusky, looks up at her mother while her hair takes on a perfect match to her outfit. Leahy said she had a great time at the event—nothing but happy clients.
  • KayseInField
    IN THE FIELD—2004 Morenci graduate Kayse Onweller works in a test plot of wheat in Texas. She’s part of Bayer CropScience’s North American wheat breeding program based in Nebraska, where she completed post-graduate work in plant breeding and genetics.
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    BEVY OF BALLS—Stair District Library Summer Reading Program VolunTeens, including Libby Rorick, back left and Ty Kruse, back right, threw a dozen inflatable soccer balls into the crowd during a reading of “Sergio Saves the Game.” The sports-themed program continues on Wednesdays through July 27.
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