The art in craft: Brewers showcase a wide variety of ‘hoppy’ beers

April 2014 Posted in Food & Drink | Comments Off

nectarcreekBy James Day

The three most important letters in Northwest craft brewing circles these days are I-P-A.

“Anything with the word IPA in it is hot,” said Matt Van Wyk of Oakshire Brewing in Eugene.

IPA, or India Pale Ale, originated in Britian in the late 18th century, with legend having it that they were brewed to be stronger and more “hoppy” to survive transport to India.

No matter the origin, “People love hops,” said Ben Love of Gigantic Brewing of Portland.

J Shilling, czar of the taps at 5th Street Growlers in Corvallis, agrees.

Cycle Silverton: Bicycle-friendly movement gains traction

April 2014 Posted in Community, Sports | Comments Off
Cyclists take a Tuesday spin around the Silverton area. Photo by Kristine Thomas.

Cyclists take a Tuesday spin around the Silverton area. Photo by Kristine Thomas.

By Steve Ritchie

Silverton is well-known for a host of special attributes. The welcome sign announces “Gateway to Silver Falls” and “Oregon’s Garden City.” Silverton also can boast about being the Christmas tree capital on our civic resume, as well as about its First Fridays, thriving art community, unique set of festivals, and picturesque downtown.

Silverton might be on the verge of adding “extraordinarily bicycle-friendly community” to the list.

A host of recent activities and opportunities seem to be driving Silverton, or maybe more appropriately – cycling Silverton – in that direction.

Water study: Cities join for grant

April 2014 Posted in Community, News | Comments Off

By Don Murtha

The cities of Mount Angel and Silverton are looking to see if aquifers could provide millions of gallons of water storage for long-term availability.

The cities have joined forces to apply for a grant from the Oregon Water Resources Department to conduct a feasibility study for an Aquifer Storage and Recovery (ASR) system. An ASR could be central to a regional water system providing Mount Angel and Silverton with an ample supply of high-quality drinking water into the distant future.

Eugene Field options: How much work, at what cost?

April 2014 Posted in Community, School | Comments Off

By Kristine Thomas

What would it cost to renovate Eugene Field Elementary School?

The answer to that question lies in first defining the work that needs to be done to bring the building up to code and make it usable for the next 50 years.

Silverton resident Gene Pfeifer believes Eugene Field Elementary School could be remediated for $4.5 to $6 million. He presented his option to the Silver Falls School Board in March.

A Dec. 18, 2013 report by BLRB Architects estimates it would cost $10.68 million for major renovations to the 93-year-old elementary school.

Silverton Council reverses direction on traffic study

April 2014 Posted in News | Comments Off

Eliminate $170,000 from the next city of Silverton budget for any traffic studies.

After receiving negative feedback about the council’s March 24 decision to spend $40,000 to study the feasibility of two-way streets in the downtown corridor, Silverton City Councilor Laurie Carter made a motion at the council’s April 7 meeting to reverse the decision.

The council voted 4-3 to eliminate the $40,000 that would have covered  the two-way traffic study. Carter, Ken Hector, Bill Cummins and Randal Thomas voted in the majority. The subsequent motion to spend $130,000 for the overall transportation master plan failed 3-4.

The Man About Town: Business is buzzing… and so should you…

April 2014 Posted in Columnists & Opinion | Comments Off

The Kid

By Jim Kinghorn

People come from all over the area to have their babies at the fantastic Silverton Health Birth Center. The Man recently got to experience why with the arrival of first grandson Conner James Kinghorn. I am finding this grandparenthood thing to be a lot like eating chocolate all day but never gaining any weight…..What? What’s that you say?…Do I have any pictures??? Oh shucks, I might just have one…….

Man About Town

The area lost a good one when former Mount Angel First Lady, First Citizen and contributor to Our Town, Winnie Bolton passed away at the age of 86. She will be missed…

The perfect place: Festival Chorale performs Bach Mass at St. Mary’s

April 2014 Posted in Arts, Culture & History | Comments Off
On April 27 members of the Festival Chorale will once again fill  St. Mary’s Church in Mount Angel with music

On April 27 members of the Festival Chorale will once again fill St. Mary’s Church in Mount Angel with music

By Brenna Wiegand

Singing sacred music in a heavenly venue – for the 100 voices of Festival Chorale Oregon, it doesn’t get much better than that.

And, they say, barring the real thing, there’s hardly a more sublime setting for the choir’s 35th anniversary concert than Saint Mary’s Catholic Church in Mount Angel.

“That place has the most amazing acoustics,” said alto singer Nancy Calavan of Stayton. “I mean, you … open your mouth and let the sound come out and you don’t have to push at all, it just sort of sucks it out of you.”

Something for the Soul: Final advice – Seize the day

April 2014 Posted in Columnists & Opinion | Comments Off

Winnie BoltonBy Winnie Bolton

Editor’s note: Here we share some last words from long-time Our Town columnist and community leader Winnie Bolton, as written by her children.

As you may already know, I passed away on the evening of March 21. There were 18 of my relatives including my children, some grandchildren and great grandchildren with me during my final days, along with a wonderful host of caregivers, friends and clergy, including a number of the seminarians whom I loved teaching. I had a rather quick passing, the doctors are still not sure of the specifics of what I died from. Life can be full of the unexpected.

The Old Curmudgeon: Bounce back – Smell those roses

April 2014 Posted in Columnists & Opinion | Comments Off

The Old CurmudgeonBy Vern Holmquist

One of these days, yes, one of these days, the good people of Silverton are going to get tired of picking me up off the sidewalk, I know it. It has happened three times now. Once on my Yamaha scooter. It got too fast and heavy, so I got a two-wheeled electric scooter. But my weight and Main Street hill was too much for its brakes and I took a nose dive into concrete and ended up with two nice ladies who stayed with me until more help arrived.

Keep an eye on Kennedy: Track, baseball teams show promise

April 2014 Posted in School, Sports | Comments Off

James DayBy James Day

This could be a special season for Kennedy High track and field. The Trojans’ girls team returns athletes who scored 45 of Kennedy’s 63 team points at last season’s OSAA Class 2A meet, in which the Trojans finished second to Portland Christian.

Loghan Sprauer won the high jump in a state-meet record 5’-6’, won the 200 in 26.70 and finished second in the 400 at 59.09. The 28 team points that Sprauer collected are a school record.

People Out Loud: Not an average mother-in-law

April 2014 Posted in Columnists & Opinion | Comments Off

Dixon BledsoeBy Dixon Bledsoe

This is a column I knew I’d have to write someday about a beautiful woman. I had hoped it would be years away. In fact, she was so strong I just assumed she might have to write a column about me instead.

Carol Boedigheimer McDonald passed away March 28 after an incredibly hard-fought battle with pancreatic cancer. Her oncologist told her that everyone he had diagnosed with this particular killer in 2009 was already gone. To last four and a half years after being diagnosed with a disease that has a 5 percent survival rate past five years is a testament to her resolve to live life to the fullest.

Ticket to ride: Public and private services provide alternatives to driving

April 2014 Posted in Community | Comments Off
The CARTS bus has regular morning and afternoon stops at both Roth’s and the Westfield Shopping Center. Photo by Brenna Wiegand

The CARTS bus has regular morning and afternoon stops at both Roth’s and the Westfield Shopping Center. Photo by Brenna Wiegand

By Brenna Wiegand

You climb aboard, plunk in your coins and take a seat. Seems simple enough, unless you’ve never used public transportation and don’t know where to start.

Where you start depends on where you want to go.

Silverton Hospital’s CareVan is available to patients of hospital staff. Complimentary rides are provided to and from Silverton Hospital and its affiliated clinics. Calling in advance is encouraged; donations cheerfully accepted.

Mr. SHS: Good fun for a good cause

April 2014 Posted in People | Comments Off
Misters SHS, left to right:  Braxton Kinsey, Jonas Dahl,  Michael Dooley, Greyson Clum,  Elias Wilson, Eric Garcia,  Austen Miller,  Derek James McIntire.

Misters SHS, left to right: Braxton Kinsey, Jonas Dahl,
Michael Dooley, Greyson Clum, Elias Wilson, Eric Garcia,
Austen Miller, Derek James McIntire. Photo by Kristine Thomas.

By Kristine Thomas

Cloaked in a James Bond theme, a fierce competition is about to take place where eight mild manner gentlemen dance, sing, act and do whatever school rules will permit to win the coveted title of Mr. SHS.

The eight senior Silverton High School contestants vying for the title agree there will be plenty of laughter. And while divided on who should win the crown, they agree on the goal: to raise $15,000 for Medical Teams International (MTI), a global health organization helping people affected by disaster, conflict and poverty by delivering medical and dental care, humanitarian aid, and development programs.

Trying a new schedule: All-day kindergarten gets good reviews

April 2014 Posted in School | Comments Off
St. Mary’s Elementary School teacher Christi Seiler works with one of the kindergarteners participating in the all-day program. Photo by Kristine Thomas

St. Mary’s Elementary School teacher Christi Seiler works with one of the kindergarteners participating in the all-day program. Photo by Kristine Thomas

By Kristine Thomas

St. Mary’s Elementary School teacher Christi Seiler was concerned all-day kindergarten would be too much for her young students.

Going from 2.5 hours per day to 6 hours, learning the “rigorous Common Core Curriculum” and adjusting to learning, Seiler was nervous, especially since this was her students’  first introduction to school.

“All my fears were put to rest by October,” Seiler said. “And they turned into excitement because of the learning taking place.”

Traffic plans: Two-way study OK’d

April 2014 Posted in News | Comments Off

By Kristine Thomas

Silverton City Councilors Laurie Carter and Jason Freilinger both have businesses in the downtown core.

However, Carter and Freilinger have come opposite conclusions about the advisability of turning the downtown streets from one-way to two-way streets.

From his shop at the corner of Main and First streets, Freilinger said he sees at least three cars a week trying to turn the wrong way. He said many people find the one-way traffic pattern “really annoying.”

Eugene Field’s future: Bond measure, replacement on the table

April 2014 Posted in News, School | Comments Off

By Kristine Thomas

Understanding it is time to make some decisions about the future of Eugene Field Elementary School, the Silver Falls School board members met March 17 to discuss the recommendations made by the Eugene Field Eugene Field Facility Task Force.

The primary recommendations are to close the school by the 2015-16 school year and to place a bond on the November ballot.

After two hours of discussion, the board agreed it needs to have a second work session scheduled for Monday, April 7, 7 p.m. at the district office, 802 Schlador St.  The meeting is open to the public, however, the board will not be taking public comment nor will it take any final action. Action on the recommendation is possible at the school board meeting April 14.

Winifred ‘Winnie’ Bolton: Nov. 20, 1927 – March 21, 2014

April 2014 Posted in People | Comments Off
Winnie Bolton

Winnie Bolton

Winifred Bolton of Mount Angel passed away with great dignity among family and friends on Friday, March 21.  She was 86 years old.  She was preceded in death by her loving husband, Tom, former Mayor of Mount Angel.  The couple’s good works for the community earned them joint recognition as Mount Angel‘s First Citizens for 2002.

Known to the Mount Angel and Silverton community as Winnie, she was born on the kitchen table in a second floor apartment over a butcher’s shop in Astoria, NY on Nov. 20, 1927, to her Irish parents William J. Burke, NYPD, and his wife Marie Byrne Burke.

Best fest: Hazelnut Fest honored

April 2014 Posted in Community | Comments Off
Maureen Ernst of the Mount Angel Chamber of Commerce accepts Best New Festival Award from Jerry Lauzon, Oregon Festivals and Events Association President.  OFEA Photo by Kristi Crawford Photography

Maureen Ernst of the Mount Angel Chamber of Commerce accepts Best New Festival Award from Jerry Lauzon, Oregon Festivals and Events Association President.
OFEA Photo by Kristi Crawford Photography

December’s Mount Angel Hazelnut Festival & German Holiday Market sponsored by the Mount Angel Chamber of Commerce received the Ovation award for “Best New Festival” by the Oregon Festival & Events Association. The OFEA members represent more than 1,200 Festivals & Events in Oregon.

The event, held at the Mount Angel Festhalle, featured more than 30 arts and crafts booths, food booths, refreshments and entertainment.  Many of the booths featured hazelnut products. The German Holiday Market included authentic and traditional German Christmas decorations and crafts.

Because of you: Remembering Grandma Conway’s lifetime of love

April 2014 Posted in People | Comments Off
Vivian Molly Sanderfer Conway

Vivian Molly Sanderfer Conway

By Brenna (Conway) Wiegand

Can one person really make a difference? Of course she can. It’s still fun to hear such a story. This one’s about my grandma, who recently died just shy of 100 years old.

Vivian Molly Sanderfer Conway – “Grandma Conway” – leaves 141 descendants whose lives are richer because of her influence. As matriarch, Grandma Conway made us a tight knit extended family.

Her stories of growing up dirt poor in Oklahoma during America’s most difficult time in history contained heartbreaking tragedies and amusing antics of a multigenerational family who relied on each other.

Sharyn Lucille Leo Walman: July 19, 1941 – March 11, 2014

April 2014 Posted in People | Comments Off

Sharyn L. Leo Walman, 72, of Prineville, Ore., passed away on March 11, 2014 in Bakersfield, Calif.

Sharyn was born in Davenport, Iowa on July 19, 1941. She moved to Monrovia, Calif. as a child and graduated from Monrovia High School in 1959.  She was a member of the American Legion Auxiliary and of the Elks Club. Sharyn was a business owner of several restaurants and bar establishments in Mount Angel, Cornelius and Canby.  She later retired to Prineville in 1999.

Taking top honors: SHS Dance team, JFK Athletic Director best in state

April 2014 Posted in School, Sports | Comments Off

By James Day
James Day
The Silverton High School dance and drill team is always in the hunt for statewide honors. The Foxes, who won OSAA titles in 1998, 1999 and 2000, had finished in the top five for six consecutive years heading into this year’s competition at the Memorial Coliseum in Portland.

March 20 they broke back through to the top, winning the Class 5A small school title. The Foxes, who fielded a team with just one senior, Renae Stratton, scored 79.61 points, 2.33 ahead of runner-up Hermiston.

A Grin at the End: The educating of Oregonians

April 2014 Posted in Columnists & Opinion | Comments Off

carl-sampsonBy Carl Sampson

I knew it would happen sooner or later. I call it the Oregon gas problem.

It started with a phone call from our son in California.

“Do you know how to pump gas?” John asked. He had borrowed a friend’s car and was trying to put some gas in it.

“Well, I’ll walk you through it,” I said, my fatherly instincts kicking in. “Put the nozzle thingy into the whatchahoozer in the side of the car. Got it?”

“Yep,” the reply came back.

Decision nears: Board studies recommendation to close Eugene Field

March 2014 Posted in News, School | Comments Off
Silver Falls School District Board
Work Session on Eugene Field School
Monday, March 17, 6 p.m.
District Office, 802 Schlador St.

By Kristine Thomas

This time, the clock is ticking on a decision about the fate of Eugene Field School.

Although in years past there have been many discussions on what to do with the 93-year-old facility, this time there is a recommendation to close the school, whether or not there is a new building on the horizon.

The Silver Falls School District’s Eugene Field Facility Task Force has unanimously recommended permanently closing the school by the 2016-17 school year.

Spring improvement: Matching funds for facade repairs available

March 2014 Posted in Community, News | Comments Off

By Kristine Thomas 

Mount Angel business grants
What: Economic development grant
for downtown businesses to improve facades.
Requirements: Grants are on a first-come,
first-served basis. Grant money
must be used by June 30.

Eligible improvements include:
repainting, replacing or removing
sign frames, adding or replacing awnings;
restoring or repairing external building
features; repairing sidewalks and other
simple aesthetic or non-structural improvements.

Questions: Kelsey Lewis at 503-845-9291
or email:

Here’s a math problem that may stump teachers but will bring joy to downtown Mount Angel business owners.

The story problem goes like this…

More than a workout: Andi Morgan celebrates 25 years of friendships

March 2014 Posted in Community, People | Comments Off
Andi Morgan

Andi Morgan

By Kristine Thomas

When Andi Morgan began teaching Jazzercise, she had six seconds to change the 45 record on the record player to a new song. Now, she uses an Ipod.

The outfits have gone from leg warmers, leotards and headbands to yoga pants and an athletic top.

As she prepared to teach a class on March 10 to celebrate her 25th anniversary as an instructor, Morgan said while a great deal has changed in technology, athletic wear and music,  what has remained the same is the friendship and support she receives from her students. She said it is an honor to be their instructor.