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When it’s time to say goodbye to a place I love, my philosophy is….have a party!

Last week the difficult decision was made to close the school in Camp Crook where I taught from 1980-1985. The closure, the result of declining enrollment and increased costs, makes me and many people in the tiny community it served very sad.

That school was and is the prototype for the one where Jane teaches in the West River Mysteries. Ever since See Jane Run! was released in 2022, I’ve day dreamed about having a reunion for its former students. Not just those I taught, but for the decades of students who attended school there. A few weeks ago, when news came that a Harding County All School Reunion (Camp Crook was and is part of the Harding County School District) was in the works for July of 2024, the timing felt right to turn the day dream into a reality.

I floated the idea to former Camp Crook students and friends via Facebook. They were enthusiastic. Those planning the larger reunion gave their blessing. Within a few hours a caterer and a venue were secured. My husband is up for the trip, and the reunion is now a go.

Plenty of details have to be hammered out before publicizing the event, but I’m working on it. Former students, keep your eyes peeled for updates to come! And when you see the invitation, please, please, please pass it along to others who might want to attend.

After all, is there a better way to celebrate the goodness and the memories of a place that means so much to so many than by throwing a party?

The only thing I can think of that comes close is to write a bunch more West River Mysteries to share the magic and goodness of the place we love. You can bet that during the reunion I’ll be listening to the stories people share. Who knows which ones will find a place in Jane’s future adventures!