Due to declining enrollment, Kingfisher Elementary School closed in 2000. It had served the community for decades as a one-room school. In 2006, word was out that the school and grounds might soon be up for sale at current market value. This surprised community members who knew the property had been donated for a nominal fee about 50 years earlier. Community interest in keeping the school and grounds for community use was high. It ultimately resulted in a 2007 referendum victory that transferred ownership to the community through resident’s taxation.
Since then, Old Kingfisher School has seen numerous improvements and is consistently used for a wide variety of community functions. It’s now the home of fitness and quilting groups, a community library and a wide variety of classes- art, history and astronomy to name a few with a focus on accessing local expertise and knowledge. Old Kingfisher School continues to be, in many ways, at the heart of the community.
Community members have turned a section of the Old Kingfisher School into a free community library. All books are donated by community members and friends. Library doors open during Farmer’s Markets in summer and at other times whenever the school is open. In a recent year, 647 books went out into the community!