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A civic century to celebrate

POULSBO — It was 100 years ago the Ford Model T was introduced, the first Mother’s Day was observed and a small fishing village boasting the charms of Scandinavia made its debut to the world as an incorporated city, holding its inaugural council meeting in the offices of the North Kitsap Herald (known then as the Kitsap County Herald).

Fast-forward to the present, where Little Norway has become not just a functioning but thriving civic agency with a future as bright as its past is beloved.

With a new city hall and comprehensive plan in the works, the city now celebrates a century milestone, remembering the past as it looks forward to the future.

“I feel it’s a special privilege to be the mayor of this city on this occasion,” said Poulsbo Mayor Kathryn Quade. “How many opportunities do we have to celebrate such a wonderful milestone, reflect back on where we came from, what brought us here and where we going in the future?”

As Poulsbo’s government approaches 2008, Quade said it will benefit from the 100 years of knowledge and efforts from all who’ve worked to make Little Norway what it is today.

“It’s a wonderful synergy,” she said, adding as the city prepares to celebrate past milestones while moving toward “future dreams,” citizens “can come together in a real home-style way.”

Come Jan. 12, they’ll have the chance to do just that as the Poulsbo Historical Society unveils a showcase of Little Norway gems from the past at the Sons of Norway lodge.

In a free daytime exhibit, all are welcome to take in sights chronicling Poulsbo’s past, from maps and mayoral artifacts to video presentations, re-enactments, oral histories and more.

The evening will bring about the city’s official inaugural celebration, a wine-tasting gala where stemware will swirl with Little Norway’s own two centennial blends and live music and dancing will take the stage. An etched souvenir wine glass comes with the purchase of a ticket, as do the many historic delights and discoveries available during the day.

“People have been working on it since last summer,” said PHS member Judy Driscoll of the Jan. 12 displays. Becoming acquainted with the early days and changes that occurred in Poulsbo is what makes the whole event worthwhile for her. “To me, that’s just reason enough.”

PHS Vice President Tom Hall said the event promises to be a can’t-miss affair.

“It’s really about the celebration of the history, not only the celebration of the past but also the present and the future of Poulsbo,” he said. “To really honor those before us that have made Poulsbo what it is is a significant thing.”

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