Evaluating the numbers: Mount Angel raises infrastructure fees

July 2015 Posted in News | Comments Off

By Kristine Thomas

Mount Angel City Manager Eileen Stein knows the key to get a city council to raise a rate, fee or tax is for her to do her homework and present the facts.

The facts are Mount Angel’s system development fees are the lowest in the county by far. And they haven’t been adjusted for more than a decade.

On July 1, Mount Angel system development fees will go from $5,049 to $8,188, an increase of 62 percent to help pay for water, sewer, storm, transportation and parks. But though the percentage increase is high, it still doesn’t bring fees in line with costs, needs, or neighboring communities. The council approved a second step, and fees will go up again on July 1, 2016 to $11,326.

Water awareness: Silverton Council asks for voluntary conservation

July 2015 Posted in News | Comments Off

Silverton Water Quality Supervisor Steve Starner is hoping for a good summer rain.

Silverton Water Quality Supervisor Steve Starner is hoping for a good summer rain.

By Kristine Thomas

Silverton City Manager Bob Willoughby doesn’t want residents to panic or be worried.

Instead, he just wants to raise their awareness of the city’s water situation.

That’s why he asked the Silverton City Council at its special meeting on June 22 to vote to activate Stage 1 of Voluntary Water Curtailment. The council was unanimous in its support.

The voluntary curtailment, Willoughby said, is to take precautions.

He said activating voluntary water curtailment is a way to “start talking about and thinking about how we use water.”

Challenge in change: Benedictine Sisters look to renew, strengthen

July 2015 Posted in News | Comments Off
Benedictine Sisters of Mount Angel
Founded in 1882, members of the order teach
in schools and parishes; work as counselors,
chaplains, and pastoral associates; they are
also artisans, cooks and gardeners.

The Benedictine Sisters sponsor two ministries:
Shalom Prayer Center and St. Joseph Shelter and
its ministries Mission Benedict, Casa Adele,
and the Bernard Migrant Men’s program.

Information: Benedictine Sister’s and
Shalom Prayer Center at www.benedictine-srs.org
St. Joseph’s Shelter at www.stjosephshelter.org

By Kristine Thomas

Sr. Donna Marie Chartraw, OSB, understands people will talk.

Much ado about mulch: How to conserve water in your garden

July 2015 Posted in Other | Comments Off
Brenna Wiegand and her father, Don Conway, prepare mulch for her garden.

Brenna Wiegand and her father, Don Conway, prepare mulch for her garden.

By Brenna Wiegand

What can transform the landscape and cut garden water usage by 30 to 50 percent?

Mulch!

Mulching is simply spreading a layer of something – bark dust is a good example – over the existing soil between plants.

Mulch is (usually) organic material – decaying leaves, grass clippings, bark, rock, sawdust, paper, hog fuel, humus… Filbert shells! Black plastic! I’ve actually seen discarded clothing used. So you see, there is much room for individuality.

Behind the scenes: Festival offers guests insight to Mount Angel Abbey life

July 2015 Posted in Arts, Culture & History | Comments Off
Brother Cyril Drnjevic, OSB of Mount Angel Abbey.

Brother Cyril Drnjevic, OSB of Mount Angel Abbey.

By Kristine Thomas

It is a well-known fact the monks at the Mount Angel Abbey have a quiet, spiritual side.

But how many people know the monks enjoy playing bocce ball, badminton and croquet; can create gourmet meals, love to hike or enjoy sharing the Abbey’s history?

If you have a curiosity about a monk’s life or the Mount Angel Abbey, attending the first St. Benedict Festival on July 11 is your chance to get a behind-the-scenes look at Abbey life while meeting many of the hilltop residents.

Giving back: Next generation restarts nonprofit to help families with sick kids

July 2015 Posted in Community | Comments Off
Kids with New Hope
The nonprofit group based in Mount Angel
will hold a chicken barbecue at Main
and Church streets on Saturday, July 4,
11 a.m. to 5 p.m. or whenever the chicken
is sold out.Kids with New Hope provides families
with children facing a life-threatening
illness with financial support.

For information, contact Julie Smith
at 503-551-8842 or
email kidswithnewhope@hotmail.com
or visit Kids with New Hope’s Facebook page.

By Kristine Thomas

Mount Angel resident Gwen Groomes has an sincere and simple reason for why she did what she did.

A lost art: Paying attention?

July 2015 Posted in People | Comments Off

By Brenna Wiegand

Heidi Walker took a drastic move two years ago – so much so that some of her friends think she’s crazy. Heidi went “hands free” –  no cell phone, smart phone; just an emergency TracFone.

It all started when she lost her swanky phone.

“My husband was looking into insurance plans, trying to replace it and I just kind of heard this inner voice that said ‘Let it go,’” Heidi said. “I was starting to notice that I was spending too much time on it; too much time with social media; too much time texting people rather than living life and paying attention to my kids and being in the moment with them and where they’re at.”

Shooting star: Elks Hoop Shoot

July 2015 Posted in School, Sports | Comments Off

James DayBy James Day

Sharpshooting basketball standout Jacob Axmaker continues to shine at the national level.

Jacob, an 11-year-old at Sublimity Elementary School, shot his way to the national Elks Lodge hoop shoot championships at the Naismith Basketball Hall of Fame in Springfield, Mass.

Jacob, who was representing the Silverton Elks Lodge, No. 2210, finished second in his age division at the national event, being bested only by Zocko Littleton Jr of Atlanta.

And Jacob moved up three spots in the national rankings this year after finishing fifth in last year’s national tournament, which is open to shooters aged 8 to 13.

Now’s the time: Wedding planning can take about a year

July 2015 Posted in Business | Comments Off
Amy Kvenbo displays her wedding centerpieces and place settings at her mother’s antique store.

Amy Kvenbo displays her wedding centerpieces and place settings at her mother’s antique store.

By Melissa Wagoner

On a night out with friends two years ago, Amy Kvenbo met the man of her dreams; she just didn’t know it yet.

“We met right before hunting season. He was a burly hairy dude who bought me a drink and I thought nothing of it,” Kvenbo recalls.

The mystery man ended up being Matt Alexander from Mount Angel and later when the two ran into each other again they hit it off.

1985 revisited: Burger Time rolls back prices for anniversary

July 2015 Posted in Business | Comments Off
Burger Time owners Liz Ipox and Chrissy Butsch are eager to celebrate their business’ 30th anniversary.

Burger Time owners Liz Ipox and Chrissy Butsch are eager to celebrate their business’ 30th anniversary.

By Melissa Wagoner

If you don’t believe in time travel, you just might change your mind.

This July, the year 1985 is returning to Burger Time in Mount Angel.

The restaurant will celebrate its 30-year anniversary with a trip back in time to the original grand opening celebration complete with balloons, clowns and door prizes as well as special prices on specific items reflecting the original menu.

“We’re thinking deluxe cheeseburger and a small fry with a medium drink is $2.29. That was the original price,” owner Liz Ipox said.

Finding a niche: New business owners put dreams into action

July 2015 Posted in Business | Comments Off

By Brenna Wiegand

The arts, interesting food and cool coffee shops – sounds like Silverton. Looks like Silverton’s newest business owners are on the right track.

White Oak Art, Unique Items & More

Since Lori and Terry McLaughlin opened White Oak, they have marveled at their welcome. It’s affirming in their choice to combine their passions and share the things they love with others.

“I love art and I have friends in the area who are artists,” Lori said. “We’re all somewhat like-minded, which gives the store a nice feeling altogether.”

The Old Curmudgeon: Pipe dreams Risks – and rewards – in following a passion

July 2015 Posted in Columnists & Opinion | Comments Off

The Old CurmudgeonBy Vern Holmquist

I must have been about 15 when I first learned of the great joy of pipe smoking. I had tried cigarettes, but it was the aroma and taste of tobacco smoked in a pipe that really turned me on. There was a pool hall in my home town of Bozeman, Montana that sold fine English pipe tobacco that came in small tin cans, Escudo, Capstan, Parson’s Pleasure, Baby’s Bottom (nothing smoother than) and an Irish tobacco named Erinmore.  What a joy these compressed, slow burning tobaccos were, totally different from our Prince Albert, or Sir Walter Raleigh we knew ont the drug store shelf.

Inspiring countryside: Jane Castelan Buccola creates art festival poster

July 2015 Posted in Arts, Culture & History, People | Comments Off
Jane Castelan Buccola’s artwork was chosen for the 2015 Silverton Art Festival poster.  Photo by Kate Cosgrove

Jane Castelan Buccola’s artwork was chosen for the 2015 Silverton Art Festival poster. Photo by Kate Cosgrove

By Kate Cosgrove

A drive in the countryside is what provided Silverton resident Jane Castelan Buccola, 69, with the inspiration to create the painting that became the 15th annual Silverton Art Festival poster.

The festival will be Aug. 15 – 16 in Coolidge McClaine Park in Silverton.

Jane recently met with Our Town to share her work and thoughts on what makes Silverton such a wonderful and supportive arts community. She is a member of Lunaria Galley, 113 N. Water St.

George W. Hauswirth: Nov. 21, 1942 – May 27, 2015

July 2015 Posted in People | Comments Off

George W. Hauswirth was often referred to as a “Renaissance Man” because of his many and varied talents.

He was born to George W. Hauswirth II and Annis B. Hauswirth in Coronado, Calif. on Nov. 21, 1942. He passed away May 27, 2015 at the Edward F. Tokarski Hospice Home in West Salem. He was 72 years old.

A celebration of his life will be held Sunday, July 26, 2 to 5 p.m. at the Chemeteka Eola Vitaculture Center, 215 Doaks Ferry Road NW, Salem.

George was an artist working in a variety of media including sculpture, jewelry, paint and mixed media.

Bird is the Word: Fly-fishing… and feminism

July 2015 Posted in Columnists & Opinion | Comments Off

Kali-MartinBy Kali Ramey Martin

The face they make when they find out is always the same. A bit of surprise, a touch of skepticism and a moment of indecision. Do I take her seriously or dismiss her as a clueless enthusiast?

That’s pretty much how it goes when people find out that this 28-year-old redheaded female with glasses is a fly-fisherman.

I mean, I get it. I’m pretty unassuming and hardly look like a rugged outdoorsy type. In addition to fly-fishing, I also love making jam and getting pedicures. But instead of feeling incensed about the hesitation I’ve been met with, I’m all the more motivated to gush over how special fishing is to me and what an important role it’s played in my life.

A Grin at the End: What’s in a name

July 2015 Posted in Columnists & Opinion | Comments Off

carl-sampsonBy Carl Sampson

I’ve always been amazed by the names some parents choose for their children.

Some are practical.

For example, my Mom always said she chose Carl because she wanted to a make sure I could spell it.

I don’t know what that says about her faith in my abilities, but to this day I have not misspelled my name.

Mission accomplished.

Other parents rely on traditional family names.

That’s fine.

If your great grandfather was named Bananafana Fofana, you can name your child whatever you want from the Fofana family.

More than a job: Two women complete careers in public service

June 2015 Posted in People | Comments Off

By Brenna Wiegand

We know there are a lot of people retiring this summer, especially public employees who seem to do so before July 1. Our Town was recently alerted to the impending retirement of two women – a letter carrier and a teacher – who’ve gone the distance and beyond in their professions and dedication to their community.

You can imagine how enjoyable it was to meet these two – 68 years’ service between them, and we thought you’d like it, too. Chances are you’ll be inspired – and schooled – by them.

Rose Boen retires after working for the U.S. Postal service for 27 years.

Rose Boen retires after working for the U.S. Postal service for 27 years.

Fountain facelift: Community members work to add art to the park

June 2015 Posted in Community | Comments Off

By Brenna Wiegand

Few will deny the fountain in Coolidge McClaine Park is a tad rundown.

The current Ford Family Foundation Leadership program cohort aims to change that. The group’s leadership training culminates by carrying out a public service project. The class targeted the fountain. The foundation will match $5,000 to get the project started.

“This project will enhance the overall beauty of the fountain with mosaic art guided by professional artist Lynn Takata who did the large mosaic at the Salem YMCA,” class member Laurie Boyce said. “Once completed, the fountain will become a lovely and lively place for residents to gather in the hottest days of summer.”

New date: Oregon Garden Brewfest adds new features to popular festival

June 2015 Posted in Community | Comments Off

By James Day

There is a whole hop load of new at this year’s Oregon Garden Brewfest.

The Silverton suds fest, in its 11th year, moved from its usual late April slot to Father’s Day weekend. The event now offers a third tent with free shuffleboard and other games, and the Father’s Day move allows The Oregon Garden to work with the Silverton Hills Strawberry Festival on Sunday. Folks can carbo load on strawberry shortcake, then take a shuttle to the Brewfest.

What is not new is that the festival will have upward of 60 brewers, cidermakers and meaderies on hand, pouring more than 130 beverages, with continuous music and food offerings.

Capturing the beauty: Silver Falls State Park’s artist in residence

June 2015 Posted in Arts, Culture & History | Comments Off
The work of Silver Falls State Park artist-in-residence Neal “Peace” Yasami is on display at South Lodge. A Father’s Day reception for the artist from 1 - 3 p.m. is open to the public

The work of Silver Falls State Park artist-in-residence Neal “Peace” Yasami is on display at South Lodge. A Father’s Day reception for the artist from 1 – 3 p.m. is open to the public

By Mary Owen

Following in his father’s footsteps, Neal “Peace” Yasami became an artist.

And this Father’s Day, his 19 original oil paintings of Silver Falls will be installed in the South Falls Lodge. A reception and slide presentation at the lodge, in the park’s Historic District, is set for 1 to 3 p.m. June 21 at the lodge. The event is free and open to the public.

Fox baseball: Best season since 1989 ends in state round of 16

June 2015 Posted in School, Sports | Comments Off

James DayBy James Day

It was a banner year for Silverton baseball under first-year coach James Rise. The Foxes advanced to the round of 16 in the state playoffs for the first time since 1989.

Silverton, which finished 13-15 overall after a 1-8 start, hosted Ashland in the Class 5A play-in round and took a 5-4 win vs. the Grizzlies. The Foxes lost a 15-7 slugfest against eventual state champion runner-up Liberty in the round of 16.

Pajama fun run debuts in Silverton

June 2015 Posted in Community | Comments Off

By Melissa Wagoner

Derek Zinser doesn’t care much for running. When he tells people he’s not a runner, it makes them laugh.

“I don’t like to run unless I am getting chased by a bear or some other large animal with teeth,” Zinser said.

He does like planning events, especially fun runs. “I make my 5K events something that anyone can do. They are not timed events. Participants can walk, jog or run. I want these events to be fun and unique.”

A Silverton High School alumnus, Zinser is planning Oregon’s first Pajama Rama 5K.

Reroute: July 4th parade changes

June 2015 Posted in Community | Comments Off

The Mount Angel Chamber of Commerce’s Fourth of July Parade is going backwards this year. No, not the participants. They will be marching or driving or walking face forward. It’s just the parade route that will be in reverse.

Due to construction at Kennedy High School, where the parade normally begins, organizers found it necessary to reverse the route, said Randy Stockdale, one of the organizers of the parade.

On Saturday, July 4, participants should meet on Garfield Street, on the east side near the intersection with Church Street. Lomeup will continue back toward the Mount Angel Festhalle, Stockdale said.

Man About Town: Why yes… There will be a test

June 2015 Posted in Columnists & Opinion | Comments Off

Man About TownBy Jim Kinghorn

The Man is back! Whew, with all the hot air and hullabaloo over the school board election and all the associated opinions, this dopey column kept getting pushed off the pages of this local paragon of journalistic excellence, so let’s catch up, shall we?

After 10 great years in beautiful downtown Mount Angel, we moved the palatial, global headquarters of Our Town and Mt. Angel Publishing to the corner of Oak and Second streets in Silverton… Is that the only business movement you ask? Nooooo, not by a long shot, Sparkey. In fact, it’s high time for another installment of The Man’s Business Musical Chairs, so buckle up and cue the music….

People Out Loud: Heroes and superstars

June 2015 Posted in Columnists & Opinion | Comments Off

DixonBy Dixon Bledsoe

Two of the most overused words in the English language are superstar and hero.

People who make idiots of themselves in today’s plethora of bad television are labeled superstars.

People who work hard, provide for their families as best they can, and keep between the lines are heroes.

I have little respect for the former and loads of respect for the latter.

But Molly and Alex Newman come really close to personifying the terms Hero and Superstar.