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Carol Hausafus volunteers as one of the caretakers of the Estacada Community Center's garden

PMG PHOTO: EMILY LINDSTRAND - Carol Hausafus tends to a tree in the Estacada Community Center's garden.

Carol Hausafus says she rarely leaves her home without a plastic bag and yard clippers.

Hausafus is one of the forces behind the colorful daisies and irises at the Estacada Community Center and spends several days each month caring for the grounds.

She became involved with the center's garden three years ago when the organization put out a call for landscaping assistance. Several groups and individuals around town adopted sections of land to maintain.

Hausafus enjoys caring for the plants at the Community Center. "It's very rewarding doing something for someone else," she said.

Hausafus' dedication has not gone unnoticed. "She's a hard worker," said Jan Melcher, a fellow volunteer at the Community Center.

"In spring (and) summer, it's more often than not that we find Carol pulling weeds, on her own before or after hours, because she had some extra time on her hands," added Estacada Community Center General Manager Christina Richartz.

Hausafus is also a driver for the center's Meals on Wheels program, ensuring that clients in the Estacada area receive a warm meal and other necessities. Recently, a letter was received at the Community Center about Hausafus' enthusiasm for the Meals on Wheels program.

"She goes the extra mile in serving people and giving extra goodies," according to the letter's author. "She recently bought shoes for a Meals on Wheels client who was literally walking out of his."

Hausafus is involved with several other groups around town, including the Estacada Garden Club. She enjoys connecting with her fellow club members. "We go on field trips to see unique gardens," she said. "I like spending time with all of the nice people."

Hausafus has been interested in gardening since the earliest days of her childhood. "At two, my grandfather had me helping him in his garden. My grandpa got me started, and my mom kept me going," she said.

An Eagle Creek resident for 43 years, Hausafus also tends to her garden at home. She enjoys the bright colors that flowers and other plants can bring to an environment. "I love to see the flowers. I like all plants. I love the different colors," she said. "I don't like to pick them. I like them to stay in the garden."

She noted that gardening is a tranquil activity. "I like the peace and quiet that you get while doing something like this. I didn't think this would be what I

was doing when I was 76," she said.

Hausafus also appreciates working at the Community Center. "Estacada is very lucky to have a nice facility like this. There are a lot of nice people," she said. "You meet interesting people while you're here."


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