When the Naselle Congregational Church closed down, they donated their facility to be used by the Naselle Finnish-American Folk Festival. It was decided to establish the Naselle Community Center to be a gathering place for local events. The Center hosts community and cultural programs and is available for facility rental.
For information on facility use and availability, contact Bill Grimberg at firstname.lastname@example.org, or Audrey Ullakko at email@example.com.
From Barb Swanson, FAFF Secretary and NCC Arts Coordinator:
The Finnish American Folk festival group in Naselle Washington was given the gift of a building in Naselle!! We have been trying and succeeding in using it as the Naselle Community Center for over two years. We are going on our 3rd year now and because of the Pandemic that sadly hit the entire world, we are now asking for help to continue upkeep and maintenance costs.
Our local Congregational Church had been declining in membership over the years and was faced with maintenance costs and no pastor. A small group of remaining members got together and discussed possible options for their beloved church building. They wanted to donate the church to a local non -profit organization and wanted it to be used in a way that would provide a benefit to the Naselle community.
Over the past two years, we have been offering the building to others to use for monthly and weekly meetings, rentals for weddings and funerals, and most of all have been offering locals and visitors alike the chance to see local talents perform in a beautiful building setting. We have had all kinds of performers here in Naselle, including Carl Wirkkala, folk and country singer, Kim Angelis, violinist, Jennifer Goodenberger, pianist, Richard Ellis, singer, Gene Quilhaugh, local folk singer and guitarist, and even special guests like Ruusamari Teppo, the famous Finnish pianist and great granddaughter of Sibelius. We have also featured local and visiting artists who came to display and sell their beautiful works of art during an Art festival held at the Community Center. We were all set to feature the amazing Bayside Singers from Ocean Park when the Community Center had to close down.
Mike Swanson, past Finn Fest chairman and signer for the new building, said: “It’s special that the congregation donated the church to the group, which holds its festival every 2 years. I’m just happy we have the opportunity to use it for the best interest of the community. With the shutdown of the Community Center, we are facing a critical shortage of maintenance funding. We appreciate any donations for this worthwhile community resource.”
Our community here is amazing! They have supported our local Finnish Festival since 1982! Please feel free to contribute to the following websites:
- https://spccf.fcsuite.com/erp/donate/create?funit id=1258
- or you can donate to the FAFF website and earmark the donation for NCC (Naselle Community Center) https://nasellefinnfest.com
- Facebook page: Finnish American Folk Festival of Naselle