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Recreating repose – Storm-damaged trees removed at Providence

By Brenna Wiegand The feeling of serenity on the campus of Providence Mt. Angel Skilled Nursing Center is – was – owed largely to the stands of mature oaks and other trees that seem to stretch out their arms to shelter and to heal. The ice storm changed all that, devastating the trees and damaging roofs around the nursing center […]

Silverton Flywheels: Auto club fundraises for scholarship

By Melissa Wagoner From the outside the Silverton Flywheels might appear to be just your average car club, with muscle cars and hot rods shined up and displayed in all their glory at every show. But the club – which is one of the oldest in Silverton, having been established way back in 1961– has always been about much more […]

A Grin at the End: What you leave out … but don’t take out the soul

The key to good writing is what you leave out. Too often, writing makes its way into the public circus without the benefit of editing, and it’s painful. The basic points may be there but they are crowded by half-baked thoughts and fictionalized versions of reality. Add a dash of ignorance about history – or science or math or politics – […]

City of Silverton: Insights from City Manager’s first 90 days

By Ron Chandler, City Manager It’s been two months since I began working in Silverton and it’s been great. I’ve met many residents and business owners in town who have all been very welcoming. I’ve enjoyed getting to know our City Council and City staff. They are dedicated public servants who keep things moving forward. During these past two months […]

City of Silverton: City staff prepares budget for 2021-22 fiscal cycle

The budget process began in January 2021 with staff developing revenue estimates and cost projections to maintain current services at the existing level and to fund other projects based on Council Goals, Capital Improvement Plans and citizen requests. Revenue projections are based on information from other governmental agencies, prior year actual data and by estimating any changes within the community. Once staff […]

Houses to build: Habitat for Humanity sets goal of 18 houses in three years

By Melissa Wagoner In a typical year the North Willamette Valley Habitat for Humanity builds one or perhaps two houses.  “We’ve always been a onesie-twosie organization,” Kari Johnson, executive director since 2019, confirmed. “But that’s one of the things they said when they brought me on is that they wanted to grow.” That is primarily because, with housing costs throughout […]

Summer kick off: Mount Angel hosts two-day Independence celebration

By Melissa Wagoner When the Mt. Angel Chamber of Commerce realized this year Independence Day fell on a Sunday, they saw it as a chance to shake up the usual traditions.  “[I]t seemed like a great opportunity to add an additional event on Saturday to bring people together and celebrate our town, community and independence,” Chamber of Commerce President Sarah […]

Break the cycle: Too much pandemic screen time raises issues

By Melissa Wagoner Too much time spent interacting with screens was a problem long before the pandemic, so much so that the American Academy of Pediatrics (AAP) issued specific guidelines about the quantity of time children should spend in front of a screen.  “For children younger than two years, the AAP discourages all screen time and encourages ‘…more interactive activities […]

Datebook: July 2021

Datebook Submission Information Get your events and fundraisers published in Our Town. If your ongoing event was cancelled because of COVID-19 and is starting up again, please send a new listing. If you are meeting by Zoom or virtually, send those, too! Send your releases to [email protected]. Or drop them off at 401 Oak St., Silverton. ••••••••••••••••••••••••••••••••••••• Weekly Events Monday: […]

Letters to the Editor: Praise for McClaine Street project

Now that Silvertonians have had (time) to experience driving on a street without cracked pavement and potholes we should take time to appreciate all the hours and hard work by city staff, councilors and contractors to give the town the beautiful reopening of McClaine Street. I’m sure the hours of aggravation they endured were numerous, but we can acknowledge a […]

Letters to the Editor: Thank you, supporters

Dear Editor, Please allow me to take a minute and thank all 1,542 voters who supported me to serve as a board member of the Silverton Fire District. My hope was that my combined experience in managing taxpayer money and serving as a firefighter would be enough to prevail. Though it is not to be, I wish Chief Giles and all the […]

Eco-bin-go: Sustainable Silverton makes switching to Earth-saving habits fun

By Melissa Wagoner Making the changes needed to live a more sustainable life can feel overwhelming, which is why the members of the group Sustainable Silverton have come up with an easy, fun way for community members to make five simple changes over the next six months. “Beyond Bins is what we’re calling our project,” Elyce Hues said of the […]

Letters to the Editor: There’s more to the tree story

I must say that I was more than a little dismayed when I read the article in the May 1 edition of Our Town entitled, “Storm damaged trees can remain a hazard.” The story, along with the accompanying photograph of the storm-damaged tree along B Street showing Trinity Lutheran Church in the background, seemed to imply that somehow the congregation […]

Letters to the Editor: Mantie for school board

I am writing this letter in support of Stephanie Mantie for the Silver Falls School Board, zone 4. Stephanie has all the qualities that would make an excellent board member. She is smart, well spoken, cares greatly about kids and has a desire to do what’s best for all kids in our district if she is elected. Stephanie has four […]

Letters to the Editor: Support for Stephanie

We have had the privilege of knowing Stephanie Mantie for 20 years. We served together in our church youth group for many years. We have witnessed her raise her kids, serve others, and interact in the community. We cannot recommend her enough for the position on the school board. She is a person of immense integrity. We have witnessed her […]

Something for the Soul: Local labyrinths

By Melissa Wagoner Celebration encourages community to take long way ‘round Each year on the first Saturday in May, people across the globe take part in a form of moving meditation known as “walk as one at 1,” in honor of world peace. Utilizing labyrinths – those meandering single-pathed designs constructed to promote personal, spiritual and psychological transformation – World […]

Virtual concerts set at Mount Angel Abbey

The Willamette Master Chorus will perform Spring Concerts, Sacred Music on Sundays, May 2 and 16 at Mount Angel Abbey. The concert will be made available to stream online. While the chorus cannot participate as a large group in the church, they are able to capture some incredible sounds at this beloved site.  Accompanist Debra Huddleston will join the WMC […]

Fun run for John: Mount Angel family raises funds for son’s kidney transplant

By Melissa Wagoner When seven-year-old John Kloft told his parents he had pain in his side in May of 2020 they assumed he had appendicitis. “We took him to his normal Physician’s Assistant, Brianna Brooks in Silverton,” John’s parents, Mike and Patty Kloft, wrote in a recent press release chronicling the family’s journey. “She sent us for more tests because […]

Emergencies are inevitable: So, why don’t we prepare?

By Melissa Wagoner The Red Cross mantras, “disaster can strike at any time” and “disaster preparedness starts with you” are by no means new messages, yet they still go largely ignored by a large segment of the population, even as devastating hurricanes and wildfires tear across the country. The question is – why is that? “It’s hard to think about,” […]

Opening rush: Dodgeball coordinators receive Distinguished Service Award

By Melissa Wagoner Raising funds for Silverton’s Project Graduation – a parent organization which puts on an all-night, drug and alcohol-free post-graduation celebration – is no small feat. With an average of 225 kids attending the party each year, costs can range into the thousands. But it is well worth all the effort it takes to fund this annual fete, […]

Health insurance enrollment ends Dec. 15

A majority of Oregonians may not realize they only have until Dec. 15 to enroll for health insurance through the Affordable Care Act or go without health insurance for 2020. This year, coverage is more affordable. According to a new Health and Human Services report, people can find cheaper plans this year than in years past. For the last two […]

Santa comes to Silverton: Skeptics take a breather

By Melissa Wagoner For people around the world Christmas is a magical time of year. “Throughout humanity, Christmas was our way of convincing ourselves that winter will end,” Santa Claus, that magical and iconic Christmas symbol, recently told me as we chatted about the upcoming holiday season. “And we need to know that it will end.” Because what are the […]

Hazelnut Fest German-inspired holiday market

By Nancy Jennings The Mount Angel-Silverton Hazelnut Festival is about to get nuttier. New this year is the addition of a  Friday evening “sneak preview”, Dec. 6, 4 – 8 p.m. Because popular items have sold out in previous years, the Friday hours give the serious holiday shopper a chance to make sure they get what’s on their gift list […]

The Galarage: A neighborhood modern art-happening just round the corner

By Brenna Wiegand Artist Laura DeVito is taking art to the streets by converting her garage into an art studio and gallery of sorts. “I have a friend who is doing a garage gallery in Portland and I thought it was a really great idea,” DeVito said. “It’s dialing into the neighborhood and enabling more people to have an art […]

Change in flow: Scotts Mills Dam removal slated for September 2020

By Melissa Wagoner Oregon’s dams are a part of an important story according to Ron Garst, the Natural Resources Representative for the Pudding River Watershed Council (PRWC). And the 150-year-old dam in Scotts Mills Park is no exception. “This is a history lesson,” Garst said, noting that defunct dams, like the one in Scotts Mills, are a record of the […]