You may have noticed that the steeple of the former Cumberland Church is partially uncovered. Sheets of particle board protecting it have been taken off.
I noticed the change early last week and wondered about it. Before I could ask, Joel Orton sent me an update of what’s been going on with the 130-year-old church, which was moved last fall from its site at 401 S.E. Main St. to 1400 Santiam Road, a few blocks away.
Orton is the vice president of the Cumberland Community Events Center, the nonprofit that is working to preserve and restore the historic building and make it available for public and private functions.
Some of the highlights of the information he sent, including an upcoming chance to get a closer look at the steeple:
- Repairing the steeple and putting it back up is the focus of current efforts, along with replacing the roof, repairing and painting the siding and restoring the windows. “We have solicited and are now evaluating bids for this phase of the work,” Orton wrote.
- For the roof work, the project has received a $10,000 historic preservation grant from the Daughters of the American Revolution.
- For the painting portion, Miller Paint has offered a “generous discount” and is helping with color selection. Orton sent along an example of the color mockups the company is creating for the Cumberland.
- This Saturday and Sunday, June 25 and 26, Cumberland supporters have arranged for a yard sale at the event center address, 1400 Santiam, at Santiam and Pine. The sale is set for 10-4.
- On July 30, the site will be one of the stops on Albany’s Historic Homes Tour. People won’t be able to go inside the building, but they can get a closer look at the steeple while it’s still on the ground.
- And then, on Sept. 22, there will be a Cumberland fundraising dinner at Springhill Cellars Winery. For information, keep checking the event center website.
How soon will the building and grounds be ready as an events center? It’s not any time soon, but the answer depends on continued success in raising funds. (hh)