Rubber duck race to raise funds for Coal Creek School

“A Pleasant Event” was reported in the Meeker Herald on Sept. 24, 1892, about the dedicatory ball held at Coal Creek School. People from all over the county came to this “temple of learning” for a dance and a supper that was an “epicurean feast.” The total cost of the building was $2,000. More than 600 pupils were educated at Coal Creek School when it closed in 1948. The Rio Blanco County Historical Society—Rural School Project is in the final stages of restoring the exterior of Coal Creek School to its original appearance in 1892 with the help of a State Historical Fund grant and through the generous donations of individuals, businesses and local grants. This historic building is on the National Register of Historical Places, the Colorado Register of Historical Properties and the Rio Blanco County Historic Preservation List. The Rural School Project team is now enlisting the help of the community to restore the belfry and the interior of the Coal Creek School. The ornate belfry of Coal Creek School was the focal point of this school but did not withstand the test of time and has to be rebuilt. The original bell is in the White River Museum and will be restored to its location above the school. We are raising funds to complete the interior of the school and recreate the belfry. At present prices, just the belfry will cost more than seven times what the school cost to build in 1892. Please join us at the Fall Festival in Meeker on Sept. 24 for root beer floats and a chance to win the Rubber Ducky Race. Old buildings are like people with unique personalities and stories to tell. Making Coal Creek School into an educational, interpretative center for our community and visitors is preserving our heritage. We are inviting the community to become involved in restoring the belfry and interior of Coal Creek School with donations of time, materials and money. The Rural School Project team of Marge Rogers, Martha Cole, Janet Clark and Ellen Reichert are available for information or presentations explaining the restoration of this historical building and making history come alive for people of all ages. A rededication event in 2017 is planned to celebrate the school’s 125th year.