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BY ROBIN GINER
A moving company recently dropped off a large stack of boxes and they are sitting in the reception area of OWAA’s headquarters. Pretty soon we’ll begin sifting through eleven years’ worth of the organization’s files and paraphernalia, filling those boxes as we prepare to move our headquarters to a new location here in Missoula. The Hickory Trail office is the only OWAA home I’ve known, from when Steve Wagner originally hired me back in 2000, shortly after the building was completed, to when I returned to the organization four years ago. While selling the condo — no small feat in Missoula’s current commercial real estate market — was a solid and beneficial choice, I can’t pretend I won’t be sad on May 12 when I lock those front doors for the last time.
We’re turning over ownership of the condo to a group of psychologists. A fit, I think, that compliments the professional nature of the other residents of the Hickory Trail property. Though our move may be bittersweet, it appears to be fate. The doctor purchasing our share of the building watched as the structure took shape more than a decade ago. She lived in the office’s neighborhood while finishing her degree at the University of Montana, and told herself that one day her practice would be in “that building.” Luckily for both of us, as she was looking to purchase a location for her growing practice, we were looking to sell our share of her dream location: a prairie-style building on a quiet residential street, just outside of Missoula’s busy downtown district.
Sale of our headquarters won’t leave us homeless. By the time this issue of Outdoors Unlimited is published, we will have signed a lease on a new headquarters. After looking at a number of possibilities in town, we’ve narrowed it down to two potential rental office spaces. The first is on a quiet residential street just a few blocks away from Hickory Trail, in a building housing a number of smaller businesses and artists. The other, on a decidedly busier thoroughfare, is farther outside the historic downtown area. Both will suit our needs and our budget, and in the coming days we’ll make our final decision and notify the moving company of where they’ll be hauling those boxes.
In the coming weeks, watch your mailbox and your inbox for change-of-address notifications from OWAA headquarters. We’ll miss no opportunity to let you know where you can find us next time you come rambling through Missoula or when you simply need to send something our way. Our door is always open and we look forward to your visit!♦
— Robin Giner, OWAA Executive Director firstname.lastname@example.org