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SACA moving into Ratchet building; murals up in air

Ratchet Brewery murals
A moving crew works on removing items associated with Ratchet Brewing’s operations at 1069 N Second St. in Silverton. Silverton Area Community Aid will be moving into the building, and the “four freedoms” murals will be moving. Credit: James Day

By James Day

Silverton Area Community Aid will be moving soon into the building that has been occupied by Ratchet Brewing since 2019.

Ratchet shut down its Silverton operation on Feb. 11, although its southeast Salem location on 25th Street remains open. Will Mary, one of the co-founders of Ratchet, meanwhile, has opened a restaurant called Palominos on Court Street in Salem.

SACA is moving because the long-time community aid organization needs more space than its basement location in the Community Center on South Water Street can provide. The city’s Planning Commission on Jan. 10 approved a conditional use application that will allow SACA to move into the Ratchet building, which lies in the general commercial zone.

Earlier, on Dec. 5, the Silverton City Council gave the SACA move a boost by unanimously approving a request by SACA to waive the $1,100 application fee that a conditional use permit usually requires.

One piece of the puzzle that remains is the fate of the “four freedoms” murals that cover one of the walls of the Ratchet building.

Norm English, president of the Silverton Mural Society, said that SACA has asked his group to remove them. English said the society plans to begin the process of taking them down and storing them sometime in March and that anyone interested in hosting the murals should contact him at [email protected] or 503-930-7074.

The murals were painted by Tonya Smithburg in 2015. A previous set, painted in 1994, by David McDonald, was destroyed when the Masonic Lodge on Main Street was razed in 2015.

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