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Eagle Cap Excursion Train - Page 8

Rosedell Bed & Breakfast - Page 12

The Rocks District AVA Approved -Page 18

NORTHEAST OREGON BUSINESS NEWS Business, Ar t, Culture, Outdoors, Travel & Enter tainment

Volume 2 - Issue 2 free

Serving Baker, Morrow, Umatilla, Union and Wallowa Counties


MAR/APR 2015

Happy 20 Year Anniversary Wildhorse Resort & Casino

The CTUIR and Wildhorse leadership had a vision and that vision has steadily become a reality

By Lori Kimbel hen Capital Gaming out of New Jersey first flew over the bare piece of land that would one day become Wildhorse Resort and Casino, they asked themselves, “who would ever come here?” However, there was a select group of people who had a shared vision of what this particular piece of land could look like with a lot of hard work and perseverance. It has been more than 20 years since that flight took place and Wildhorse Resort and Casino, like a phoenix, has risen from those dusty fields to become the most popular destination in northeast Oregon. Capital Gaming was hired by the Confederated Tribes of the Umatilla Indian Reservation (CTUIR) to help launch a successful casino. Four double wide buildings were brought in and soon there were 100 slot machines, a snack bar, and a money cage.


The 10-story, 202 room, Wildhorse Tower Hotel was part of the 2011 $45 million expansion project. Photo by Lori Kimbel

Girl Scout Cookies Arrive at KIE

this year, the Rah Rah Raisin and the Toffee Tastic, which is Gluten-Free,” said Aldrich. “The Thin Mints are now Vegan, because they have taken all of the whey out of them.” Profits from last year’s sales allowed some of the troops to go white water rafting Photo by Lori Kimbel on the Payette River Gary Bottger, plant manager of KIE Supply in La in Idaho, while others Grande, unloaded cases of Girl Scout cookies attended the musical Wicked in Boise. Plans for this or nine years KIE Supply of La Grande has been offload- year’s activities include Sleeping ing cases upon cases of Girl Scout with Sharks in Newport. KIE Supply Plant Manager, cookies for local Union County Gary Bottger, said he started helpGirl Scout troops. ing to unload cookies when his According to Cookie Manager Jenny Aldrich, there were two girls were younger and both in Girl Scouts. 17, 086 boxes of cookies deliv KIE Supply is the place ered and they will be on sale until to go for all of your electrical, March 15. “We have two new cookies plumbing, irrigation, cabinet and decorative lighting needs.



Local Food Processors Reap Big Savings Smith Frozen Foods and Grain Craft save a combined $195,000 annually Pendleton, Ore. — January 22, 2015 — Two Eastern Oregon food processors are reaping significant dollar savings and other benefits from recent investments in energy efficiency. In combination, Smith Frozen Foods and Grain Craft are expected to slash more than $195,000 from their annual energy costs, benefiting their bottom lines as well as local jobs and the economy. Smith Frozen Foods, located in Weston and served by

Pacific Power, replaced several existing freeze tunnels with two new energy-efficient models, saving an estimated 2.2 million kilowatt hours and nearly $111,000 per year. Energy Trust of Oregon provided technical guidance to Smith on the improvement and also gave Smith a $499,999 cash incentive to help offset the company’s investment. CONTINUED ON PAGE 4

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Northeast Oregon Business News

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Volume 2 - Issue 2 - March - April 2015 Publisher Lori Kimbel PO Box 295 Elgin, Oregon 97827 541-910-1096 10,000 distributed every other month. Serving Baker, Morrow, Umatilla, Union and Wallowa Counties Twitter - neobnlori Northeast Oregon Business News is owned and published by Just Another Hat Publishing Company, LLC POSTMASTER: send address changes to Just Another Hat Publishing Company, LLC, PO Box 295, Elgin, Oregon 97827 Subscription Rates: To subscribe to Northeast Oregon Business News Mail $24 to PO Box 295, Elgin, Oregon 97827

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Northeast Oregon Business News

OBA Education Foundation Announces Scholarship Recipients Community Bank Week Scholarships for Oregon High School Students The OBA Education Foundation today announced the recipients of three, $2,000 scholarships to Oregon high school seniors to support their higher education. Students who participated in a bank-hosted visit or a bank speaking event at their high school during Community Bank Week in Oregon, held October 13 – 17, 2014, were eligible to apply. Following their bank visit, students were required to recount their experience and compose an essay describing the most interesting aspect of the community bank they visited or something they learned about careers in the banking industry. The OBA Education Foundation is pleased to announce the following Oregon high school seniors who were selected by the Foundation’s independent scholarship committee as having written the most compelling essays which best captured the essence of the scholarship criteria: • Carley Beck, Marist High School, Eugene, OR (visited Summit Bank) • Hannah Kimbel, Elgin High School, Elgin, OR (visited Community Bank) • Madison Ross, Harrisburg High School, Junction City, OR (visited Citizens Bank) A total of 32 scholarship applications were received from students across Oregon who participated in visits at a number of Oregon community banks. The purpose of this experience was to allow students to see firsthand how Oregon-headquartered community banks positively influence and support local com-

Elgin High School senior, Hannah Kimbel accepts the $2,000 OBA Education Foundation scholarship from Elgin Community Bank Manager, Kathy Bonney.

munities, much like Beck states in her essay, “The financial support Oregon banks provide for the economy and job force is critical to the concrete success of our communities. When this support is combined with the philanthropic efforts Oregon banks demonstrate, it is clear just how vital a role they play in the relational system as well…It is through this devotion to us that Oregon banks will continue to provide the lasting, positive change we wish to see in our communities.” Along with community support, applicants also learned about the vast number of career opportunities banking offers. “After listening to Kathy Bonney’s presentation about careers in banking I realized that it is, in fact, a viable career option. It is stable and there are many opportunities for advancement. There are also several values that Community Bank holds that are similar to my own,” Kimbel reflected. Overall, these Oregon community bank visits were intended to teach students about banking and the vital role banks play in their communi-

ties. It is evident through the essays submitted that the community banks visited left an impression on students. The bank employees who hosted the students were also a positive influence on the students. “Throughout my visit, it became very clear to me just how important community banks are. They are full of loving employees that enjoy their job. But it doesn’t stop there. Outside of their job they work to better the lives of their community members, contributing noteworthy hours,” Ross concludes about her visit with Tricia Welch, vice president and commercial loan officer for Citizens Bank. About the OBA Education Foundation The Foundation’s overall mission is education. The Foundation seeks to explore and enhance educational opportunities for individuals in areas of banking, public and private finance, financial literacy, business, financial planning and other related subjects. The OBA Education Foundation is committed to enhancing the future of the banking industry and the community.

Thanks for Picking up the Latest Issue of NEOBN H

ere we go again, another Northeast Oregon Business News is headed to print in the morning. Once again it has been a crazy couple of months, they fly by at lightening speed, but I am sure one of these days I will catch my breath as they rush by. I have finally become a senior at EOU, and have just a few short terms to go before I receive my bachelors degree. I am excited to put my education to work as I strive to make each issue of Northeast Oregon Business News better than the one before. Once again I have had the great pleasure of learning about business in northeast Oregon, as well as all of Oregon. I thought about writing about our recent turnover in the

state capitol, but thought that one has been written about so often there probably won’t be a new angle on it for years. I hope that the former governor, John Kitzhaber can finally find some peace and I hope that Governor Katy Brown helps to create an economically sound Oregon for all of Oregon. I would like to thank Al Tovey and Tiah DeGrofft of Wildhorse for visiting with me about Wildhorse Resort & Casino’s 20th anniversary. I know that there are many of us who look forward to having a night out and Wildhorse has so much to offer right here in northeast Oregon. My family and I watched Wild on the big screen; have you seen the big screen at Wildhorse? It is awesome. I also spent some time at KIE taking pictures while Plant Manager Gary Bottger unloaded cases and cases of Girls Scout cookies. Speaking of Gary, he will

also be in the play Chitty Chitty Bang Bang at the Historic Elgin Opera House. You will not be disappointed if you come out to Elgin to see it and be sure to check the Northeast Oregon Business News Facebook page for your chance to win 2 tickets to the play. A lot of great events are included in this issue of Northeast Oregon Business News including, the Eastern Oregon Film Festival, The Governor’s Conference on Tourism, Cattle Barons and the Northwest Writer’s Conference. In other exciting news around the region the Rocks District of Milton-Freewater has been approved. This is great news for wine makers in our region. See page 18 to learn more. Be sure to read Trish’s stories about Kauffman’s Market as well as Precision Rain. I would also like to welcome Shari Carpenter to our growing list of terrific writers. Be sure to

read her piece on page 13. I would also like to thank our advertisers for their support. Without you this paper would just be stuck in my computer with no one to read it. I truly appreciate each and every one of you. For those of you waiting for me to stop in so you can place an ad and be a part of this creation, please don’t hesitate to send me a message, I would love to add your business to the pages of Northeast Oregon Business News. We have a great special going on right now, learn more about it on the previous page. Once again, for those I have yet to meet, I look forward to meeting you, and to all those friends of mine out there, my life just wouldn’t be the same without you.

Sincerely, Lori

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Northeast Oregon Business News Business Directory





Community Bank Joseph, Oregon 97846 541-432-9050

Small Business Development Center 1607 Gekeler Lane La Grande, Oregon 97850 541-962-1532

Small Business Development 2411 NW Carden Pendleton, Oregon 97801 541-278-5833

Elgin Chamber of Commerce PO Box 1001 Elgin, Oregon 97827 541-786-1770





Community Bank 609 N. Main Street Joseph, Oregon 97846 541-432-9050


229 SW First Pendleton, Oregon 97801

Mountain West Moving & Storage


1315 Jefferson Ave. La Grande, OR 97850 Phone: 541-963-2331

Blue Mt. Outfitters 1124 Adams Avenue La Grande, Oregon 97850 541-612-0148

SMITH FOODS CONTINUED FROM PAGE 1 “This was such a great project for us,” said Vernon Hawks, plant manager, Smith. “We partnered with Food Processing Solutions from Richmond, British Columbia. FPS takes a new approach to freezing vegetables. We’re excited to share our experience and have opened our doors to other companies who want to see them firsthand. Some have come from as far away as Belgium.” Among the unique features of the tunnels are 100-percent welded seams and fans that are located outside, rather than inside, the tunnel—eliminating fan motor heat from the refrigeration system’s load. Smith is saving even more energy as a result of participating in Energy Trust’s Strategic Energy Management initiative, which trains staff on how to implement behavioral and operations and maintenance changes to maximize energy savings over the long-term. “It’s amazing how much energy you can save when you raise employee awareness. We got everyone involved with our SEM initiative. We all had to ask if equipment or lights really needed to be on. We found out that by questioning our behaviors and making changes we have saved more than $50,000 annually,” said Hawks. Similarly, by participating in Strategic Energy Management, Pendleton Grain Craft, a customer of Pacific Power, is reducing its annual energy costs by an estimated $25,000. “We got employees excited about finding ways to save, and ourselves to think beyond ‘business as usual,’” said Trent Inskeep, production administrator, Grain Craft. “A good example is why lights or equipment are turned on at a specific time. All too often the

answer is ‘we’ve always done it that way.’” During Strategic Energy Management, Grain Craft discovered that a wheat dust suction motor at its grain elevator was on unnecessarily 24 hours per day. A simple change delivered a whopping $15,000 in savings per year. Grain Craft garnered other savings from switching off lights in unoccupied areas, turning off process fans when unneeded and fine-tuning shutdown and startup procedures. Energy Trust provided both companies with cash incentives for their Strategic Energy Management efforts. Grain Craft received a $9,900 cash incentive and Smith received $23,000. “It’s both exciting and rewarding to see Smith Frozen Foods and Pendleton Grain Craft make such a strong commitment to energy efficiency,” said Peter West, director of energy programs, Energy Trust. “The savings realized because of these projects helps keep these companies competitive, strengthening the local economy, growing jobs and contributing to sustainable communities.” Energy Trust of Oregon is an independent nonprofit organization dedicated to helping utility customers benefit from saving energy and generating renewable power. Our services, cash incentives and energy solutions have helped participating customers of Portland General Electric, Pacific Power, NW Natural and Cascade Natural Gas save $1.7 billion on energy bills. Our work helps keep energy costs as low as possible, creates jobs and builds a sustainable energy future. Learn more at www. or call 1-866-3687878.

Subscribe to Northeast Oregon Business News Name:_____________________________ Address:____________________________ ____________________________________ Mail $24 to PO Box 295 Elgin, Oregon 97827 Or go to to our subscription page to pay through PayPal

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Northeast Oregon Business News

Kauffman’s Market - Great Deli and Bulk Foods locally and regionally. “We sell eggs from a supplier in Cove who raises free When Paul and Judy range chickens,” said Kauffman. Kauffman of La Grande opened Kauffman’s Market LLC at 10214 “Watermelons we get from Hermiston and produce in season from Highway 82, La Grande, they wanted to offer a quick-stop shop others locally when I can accommodate them.” where the busy customer can orIn his gift department, he der a custom-made deli sandwich sells a number of home-produced with great meats and cheeses, a products from suppliers in Cove hot cup of home-made soup and and Union, such as soaps, candles, some home-baked sweets. dish cloths, loom-woven rag rugs, “We need to have these and hand-crafted purses. On the things to bring people in,” said other hand, he Paul Kauffman. Kauffman’s Market is open 9 also sells select “But I also wanta.m. to 5 p.m. Monday through Bosch and L ed to offer bulk foods and bring in Friday and on Saturday from 9 Equip kitchen seasonal produce a.m. to 2 p.m. They are closed appliances and like oranges Sundays. To reach the market, imported woven elephant grass from Bakersfield, call 541-663-8404. baskets with hanCalif., which are dles from Ghana through the free exceptionally sweet and good.” trade policy and not from sweat Kauffman is a farmer at heart and good food is something shops, Kauffman said. The bulk foods section of he knows and appreciates. the market has shelves filled with Before moving here in grains, cereals, baking ingrespring of 2009, Kauffman used dients, candies of many types, to operate a 50-head dairy farm fresh fruit and nuts, dairy in central Ohio, Amish country products like eggs, milk, butter where simple, good foods were and some grass-fed beef and the building blocks of daily life. He brought those wholesome val- pork brats from a supplier in the Nampa area. ues and products to his business “Starting next month, and even features a few foods we’re going to introduce new and gifts made by quality Amish packaging for our bulk foods,” craftsmen. said Kauffman. “We have Amish-made “It will have a more hickory rockers, tricycles and children’s wagons, not to mention colorful logo on it with ziplock and heat sealed packages. foods like hull-less popcorn and We’re going to promote more hand-rolled Amish butter,” said non-GMO products and gluten Kauffman. Whenever possible, Kauff- free foods, which are in growing demand. I have found a man finds food and gift suppliers By Trish Yerges

wholesaler who has quite a few of these products for us.” However, by far Kauffman’s greatest passion is his deli. Need a nutritious lunch on-thego? You select the meats and cheeses from the deli and they will put it together for you. Add a fresh cup of home-made soup like clam chowder to the order and you’re ready to go or eat leisurely in the dining area of the market. Planning a small party or business meeting? Come to the market for lunch; the dining room seats 40. “The deli meats and cheeses are superior products,” said Kauffman. “We have a big variety

of cheeses and the best Lebanon baloney you’ve ever tasted. It’s from Lebanon County, Pennsylvania. Oh, is that good.” Judy Kauffman produces the baked goods for the market, including bread, cinnamon rolls and a variety of berry and apple pies. Get your whipped cream or ice cream from the refrigerator section and take dessert home to your family. “She makes great cream pies too, as well as pumpkin and pecan pies by order,” said Kauffman. “She also makes up party trays of meats and cheeses from the deli.”

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Northeast Oregon Business News

Wallowa-Whitman National Forest Partners with Keeping the Right Mt. Adams Institute to Provide Jobs for Veterans to Hunt, Fish and

BAKER CITY, OREGON - The Wallowa-Whitman National Forest is proud to be partnering with the Mt. Adams Institute to provide jobs for Veterans around the Forest. The VetsWork program is an eleven month career development internship program for Veterans who have an interest in natural resource management. The program offers more than a job; the program offers physical, mental, and spiritual renewal for participants, while learning about natural resource management. VetsWork participants are placed at local, state, or federal land management agencies, such as the Forest Service where they provide project support, while learning about various career paths. “This opportunity has been life changing for me and provided me with a better outlook on my career goals. Traveling across the country from Alabama to Oregon this summer was fun and refreshing for me! The valuable work experience I am getting here with the Forest Service will definitely help me in the future with my career,” shares Kimberly Morris. Kimberly is an Army Veteran from Montgomery, Alabama, and is

working as a writer/editor learning about the National Environmental Policy Act (NEPA) on the Whitman Ranger District in Baker City, Oregon. VetsWork interns have the opportunity to learn from both Forest Service employees and members of the public. “With this position, I have had the privilege to meet and hear the stories of people from all over the world. It has given me the chance to visit great places in some beautiful settings. It has also given me insight into what goes on behind the scenes, in order to maintain such a vast and beautiful landscape. Everything from logistics, permit compliance, developed and dispersed site maintenance, to the Valuing People and Places program,” shares Benjamin Morrison. Benjamin is an Army Veteran from Valdosta, Georgia who is working as a Recreation Technician for the Hells Canyon National Recreation Area. The new VetsWork program is seeing success and opportunities for growth. “The success of VetsWork in this first full year of operation has surpassed all of our expectations. We have some incredible Veterans who are providing our sponsors with critically needed services, while accessing the many

benefits of the program and building their own career paths,” shares Aaron Stanton, VetsWork Program Director. “Through our partnership with the US Forest Service, the success of VetsWork has gained national attention resulting in expansion from the Northwest to the Northeast and Southeastern United States,” added Stanton. “I would like to thank Kimberly Morris for her writer/ editing work, Benjamin Morrison for his river ranger work, Spencer Sorensen for his archaeological work, and Mario Licata for his wilderness work on the Forest. We have been very fortunate to have such excellent interns to help us on the Wallowa-Whitman, and have also learned life-lessons from them as well,” shares Tom Montoya, Wallowa-Whitman Forest Supervisor. “This will definitely help me in the future when choosing a specific career. I came into this not knowing a thing about the Forest Service and it is all very exciting to know the amount of options you have when pursuing a career,” shares Mario Licatta. Mario is a Marine Veteran from Bothell, Washington who is working as a Wilderness Assistant for the Wallowa Mountains Office in Joseph, Oregon. For more information about the program and to view current VetsWork internships available on the Wallowa-Whitman and other Forests, please visitwww. mtadamsinstitute.comand to view a video about the program please visit: Interns: • Kimberly Morris, Writer/Editor Assistant for Whitman Ranger District • Benjamin Morrison, River Ranger Assistant for Hells Canyon National Recreation Area • Spencer Sorensen, Archeological Assistant for Wallowa Mountains Office (WMO) • Mario Licata, Wilderness Assistant for WMO -USFS-

Harvest Wildlife

Constitutional Amendment for the Right to Hunt, Fish, and Harvest Wildlife May Become Ballot Measure in 2016 Oregon Outdoor Council (Portland, OR) – Eighteen states have amended their state constitution to protect an individual’s right to hunt, fish, and harvest wildlife and an Oregon based pro-outdoor sports organization intends to try and make Oregon the nineteenth. The Oregon Outdoor Council (OOC) announced on Christmas day as “it’s gift to Oregon sports men and women” that it has began the process to have the issue on the 2016 Oregon ballot. “Hunting, fishing, and harvesting wildlife are deeply embedded in Oregon’s heritage and culture. Together they are a major economic engine for Oregon by generating $929 million in spending and $99 million in local taxes. Additionally, it provides hundreds of thousands of Oregon families with healthy, sustainable, freerange protein every year. Oregonians deserve the opportunity to decide if our way of life should be protected,” says Stan Steele, chairman of the board for the OOC. Hunters and anglers have strong support locally and across the nation according to recent surveys. A 2006 national survey indicated that 78% support an individual’s right to harvest wildlife and a 2008 survey by the Washington Department of Fish and Wildlife indicated that a larger majority, 82%, support legal, regulated hunting. Dominic Aiello, president of the OOC says he expects we will see similar support here in Oregon. If passed, the constitutional amendment wouldn’t change the Oregon Department of Fish and Wildlife’s or the Legislature’s ability to pass or regulate existing hunting, fishing, and harvest of wildlife laws.

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Northeast Oregon Business News

OSU Begins Initiative for Forest Science Complex

Press Release PORTLAND, Ore. – Oregon State University, which is internationally recognized as a leading natural resources university, has begun an initiative to build a $60 million complex to accelerate its forestry education programs and research on advanced wood products. The Oregon Forest Science Complex will encompass renovation of existing OSU campus facilities as well as new construction; showcase innovative uses of wood in building design; and allow the College of Forestry to help meet the world’s growing demand for energy efficient, tall buildings made from sustainable building products. The project includes a $30 million fundraising goal. Once philanthropic commitments are secured, OSU will seek matching bonds from the state. Bonding for the project was included in the governor’s capital budget for consideration in the upcoming legislative session. The initiative was announced today in Portland at the Oregon Leadership Summit of the Oregon Business Plan, by Thomas Maness, the Cheryl Ramberg Ford and Allyn C. Ford Dean of the College of Forestry. “We are excited about leading a new national effort to advance the science and technology necessary to primarily use wood in the construction of 5- to 20-story buildings,” Maness said. “Developing these new, competitively priced, environmentally friendly products will not only increase the value of Oregon’s natural resources, but also grow jobs in our rural communities, with substantial benefits for our state.” Seeking new methods to reduce the carbon footprint of high-rise construction, architects and engineers from Austria to Canada,

Norway and New Zealand have begun constructing buildings with exceptionally strong wood products. This “cross-laminated timber” is made of strips of wood glued together across the grain, and panels can be more than 1 foot thick and 80 feet long. OSU already is a global leader in developing adhesives and manufacturing techniques for engineered wood products. The Oregon Forest Science Complex will boost the university’s applied research efforts with a new Advanced Wood Products Laboratory. Envisioned as a 25,000-square-foot facility, it will include computer controlled and robotic manufacturing systems, plus a pilot plant designed as a learning laboratory for students. The project also will create a life-sized example of what can be done with advanced wood products through a renovation of the College of Forestry’s main academic facility, Peavy Hall. “In addition to concerns about sustainability, there is a lot of interest in engineered wood construction because these spaces are beautiful, very inviting and healthy places to live and work,” Maness said. “We want to show what you can do, and create a place that will be inspiring to our students as well as industry representatives.” New space is needed to serve OSU’s growing numbers of undergraduate and graduate forestry students. Over the last decade the College of Forestry’s enrollment has nearly doubled to about 1,000 students, and to meet high demand for trained forestry professionals, OSU plans to further increase enrollment to 2,000. The Oregon Forest Science Complex illustrates the university’s commitment to invest in its programs of greatest distinction and potential for local and global impact, said

OSU president Ed Ray. “Sometimes people think that forestry was important for Oregon’s past but don’t realize that it remains critical to our economy today, and may become even more important in the future,” Ray said. “We are very proud of OSU’s contributions to the sector and are eager to build on this rich heritage, carrying out our mission as a 21st century land grant university.” Last year OSU was named the world’s seventh best university for forestry and agriculture by Quacquarelli Symonds (QS) World University Rankings, in a survey of more than 200 schools. Fundraising for the Oregon Forest Science Complex will be led by the Oregon State University Foundation. The foundation recently concluded The Campaign for OSU, in which more than 106,000 donors made gifts exceeding $1.1 billion. Fundraising efforts are now focused on targeted special initiatives that advance the university’s Strategic Plan for creating transformative student learning experiences and building on the institution’s areas of greatest strength and potential impact, such as forest science. About the OSU College of Forestry: For a century, the College of Forestry has been a world class center of teaching, learning and research. It offers graduate and undergraduate degree programs in sustaining ecosystems, managing forests and manufacturing wood products; conducts basic and applied research on the nature and use of forests; and operates 14,000 acres of college forests.

Tom Corrick Transitioning to CEO at Boise Cascade Company B

oise Cascade Company announced today that Tom Corrick will become its new chief executive officer, effective March 6, 2015. Corrick will replace Tom Carlile who has elected to retire after 42 years with Boise Cascade and its predecessor companies. Carlile has served as CEO of Boise Cascade since 2009. Corrick was elected Boise Cascade’s chief operating officer in 2014. During his 31 years with the company, he has served as the senior vice president of Wood Products Manufacturing, senior vice president of Engineered Wood Products and has held various management and financial positions with the company. “I am excited to have the opportunity to guide Boise Cascade. We have great people and leading positions in each of our key businesses, and we are very well positioned to take advantage of the recovering housing market,” says Corrick. “I also want to thank Tom

Carlile who led us through the most difficult market our industry has seen since the Great Depression while simultaneously driving a growth strategy that substantially increased our market position in both manufacturing and distribution. On behalf of the company, its 5,600 employees and the Board of Directors, I want to thank Tom for his outstanding contributions, and I look forward to continuing to work with him as he continues to serve on our Board.” Tom Carlile become CEO of Boise Cascade Holdings, LLC in 2009, and CEO of Boise Cascade Holdings, LLC in 2009, and CEO of Boise Cascade Company following its initial public offering in February 2013. Over the past six years, Carlile led a transformation of the company which made acquisitions and invested in its manufacturing and distribution businesses during the recession to take advantage of the economic recover. “Tom Corrick knows our customers,

our employees, and our industry and will focus on growing this company just as he grew our engineered wood products business to be one of the industry leaders. I have had the pleasure of working with Tom for much of his career, and I can say without hesitation that we are fortunate to have him leading Boise Cascade as the company continues to grow,” stated Carlile. Corrick currently serves as the First Vice Chairman of the American Wood Council and on the Board of the Treasure Valley YMCA. He has a bachelor’s and master’s degree in business administration from Texas Christian University. About Boise Cascade Boise Cascade is one of the largest producers of plywood and engineered wood products in North America and a leading U.S. wholesale distributor of building products. For more information, please visit our website at

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Northeast Oregon Business News


Eagle Cap Excursion Train Announces 2015 Schedule

Photo by Marcia Clausen of Walla Walla.

ELGIN, OREGON__The Friends of the Joseph Branch and Wallowa Union Railroad have announced this year’s schedule for the Eagle Cap Excursion Train. The plan was approved recently by the Wallowa Union Railroad Authority at their January meeting in Wallowa. This is the third year the Friends of the Joseph Branch, a non-profit organization, will operate the train and manage the Elgin Depot. Following a tradition started ten years ago, the Mother’s Day Brunch opens the season, departing from the Elgin Depot at 10 a.m., Sunday, May 10. “This trip gives passengers the opportunity to enjoy the lush spring scenery and enjoy a delicious brunch. It is always popular with people from out of the area and residents alike,” said Ed Spaulding, Friends of the Joseph Branch President. “It’s a great way to kick off the season.” Spaulding noted the non-profit organization has started planning equipment maintenance and volunteer activities. The group will be offering first aid training to its volunteers in April. “One of our members, Dick Burch, applied for a grant to upgrade our first aid equipment and train volunteers in the types of medical emergencies that could happen while the train is away from the depot,“ Spaulding said. One of the items included in the grant is a defibrillator. “We are very grateful for the assistance Dick has given us. He rode the train

almost every trip last season and will again ensure a trained first aid person is on board each trip in case a passenger or crew member needs medical attention.” This year’s line-up includes a free ride for veterans on July 4th, a dinner mystery train, two train robberies, and a wine and cheese train. Other highlights involve a hatchery tour, a photo workshop, and the Boo Train on Halloween. Another option in the planning stages for October is offering people the chance to pedal a Joseph Branch Railrider from Elgin to Rondowa, then catch the train for a ride back. All rides include a meal, but the beautiful canyon and river scenery is always the focal point. The train is based in Elgin, operating out of the Elgin Depot, where a gift shop, rest rooms and ample parking are available. Excursions use a section of track along the Grande Ronde and Wallowa Rivers between Elgin and Minam. Reservations are recommended. Tickets are purchased through Alegre Travel, or 800.323.7330. Ticket agents are well informed about the trips and can also book motel rooms and offer advice on other activities and attractions in the area. The historic Joseph Branch, now known as the Wallowa Union Railroad, was rescued from salvage in 2003 when the Wallowa and Union County governments formed a partnership and purchased the highly scenic railroad and limited rolling stock. The Friends of the Joseph Branch is a 501(c)3 non-profit organization that assists the rail authority by operating the excursion train, hosting passengers, restoring the rail cars and preserving the history of the railroad. See the web site for information about how to join the Friends JB and volunteer to assist with train activities.

2014 EAGLE CAP EXCURSION TRAIN SCHEDULE Sunday, May 10 Mother’s Day Brunch Saturday, June 13 Elgin Riverfest Depot Open House & Railroad Movie Night (no train ride) Saturday, June 20 Elgin Stampeders’ Train Robbery Saturday, July 4 I Love America Veteran’s Train (Veterans ride for free and may bring one guest for just $35) Saturday, July 18 Mystery Dinner Train Saturday, August 1 Two Rivers Bonus Saturday, August 15 Two Rivers Bonus Saturday, Aug. 29 Lookingglass Fish Hatchery Tour Saturday, Sept. 12 Wine & Cheese Train Saturday, Sept. 26 Railroad History Train & Depot Open House Saturday, Oct. 3 Gold Rush Bandits Autumn Train Robbery Saturday, Oct. 10 Two Rivers Fall Foliage Photography Train Saturday, Oct. 17 Two Rivers Fall Foliage Saturday, Oct. 24 Two Rivers Fall Foliage Saturday, Oct. 31 Boo Train Full trip descriptions are available at the train website:

The Elgin Stampede

April 4 -5 Gun Show May 2 at 5 p.m. Steak Feed & Auction NEW RODEO SCHEDULE THIS YEAR! July 8 - 11 Wednesday - Family Night - 6 p.m. Thursday - Mark Nichols Memorial Bull Riding - 7 p.m. Friday - PRCA Rodeo - 7 p.m. Saturday - PRCA Rodeo - 7 p.m. Stampede Challenge starts at 6:45 Saturday evening

Elgin Stampeder’s Train Robbery on the Eagle Cap Excursion Train will be June 20th, 2015

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Northeast Oregon Business News


EOU wins Cycle Oregon grant in support of Rail-with-Trail Study E

astern Oregon University has been awarded a $10,456 grant from the Cycle Oregon Fund at the Oregon Community Foundation. The grant will support involvement from EOU students and the public in preparation of a Joseph Branch Rail-with-Trail Feasibility Study for the Wallowa Union Railroad Authority (WURA). The Oregon Parks and Recreation Department, Northeast Oregon Economic Development District and Joseph Branch Trail Consortium are partnering with the university on the study. The Wallowa Union Railroad Authority has agreed to consider building a rail-with-trail project between Elgin and Joseph alongside the Joseph Branch rail line. The feasibility study is scheduled to be completed in December 2015 and the WURA board of directors will make a decision at that time about proceeding with master planning and trail construction. “The Joseph Branch Trail has the potential to create unique benefits for northeastern Oregon,” said Terry Edvalson, who provides project management support and is an adjunct faculty member at EOU. “The development of the rail-with-trail could encourage additional interest in visiting the region, create new opportunities for the local economy, and enhance recreational and quality of life opportunities for local residents,” Edvalson added. The 163 participants in public workshops held in Elgin, Wallowa and Enterprise in December 2014 provided information about concerns, constraints and opportunities along each mile of the proposed trail. This information is being used to develop a draft trail development design alternatives report. The draft alternatives design report will be presented for review and comment in upcoming public workshops. A survey to evaluate public support for various design alternatives and gather opinions about

other issues related to the trail will be conducted this spring. Reports and other Information about the study are available at and the Joseph Branch Trail Consortium website

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Northeast Oregon Business News


Wildhorse Resort & Casino

love it here. It has really grown on me. This feels like where I come from, a bunch of small communities with their own unique identities. People are good here and I have never regretted coming here.” Many of the improvements that have been incorporated over the years have come about because Construction of the Hotel Tower took of guests comment card place in 2011. Photo by Lori Kimbel suggestions. Wildhorse has also implement a program CONTINUED FROM PAGE 1 through InfoSearch, that allows guest to fill out a survey if they hat temporary casino have left an e-mail upon check-in opened on November 5, 1994 and at the hotel. Wildhorse receives would serve as a training facility approximately 7,000 comments for some hands-on experience for through InfoSearch each year. Staff the very first employees of Wildalso pays close attention to comhorse Resort and Casino. Capital Gaming’s manage- ments made through Trip Advisor, as well as Yelp. ment of Wildhorse, however, was “You always have to short lived. Within a few months change and always have to imafter the opening of the permanent prove,” said Tovey, who reads casino in March of 1995, most of every single comment card they the management were being filled and operated by CTUIR members. receive. Next on the improvement “It was a sink or swim situation,” agenda is to create a quiet bar near said Al Tovey, general manager the hotel lobby in the space where of Wildhorse Resort and Casino. the coffee shop is now located. The “And fear is a great motivator.” coffee shop will go into the gift Nine of the original 78 are shop, which will move to a larger still employed at the casino to this retail space, also near the hotel day. lobby. Tovey, who grew up in “They have always been Malad City, Idaho, started his very forward thinking,” said Comcareer at Wildhorse as the marketmunity Relations Manager, Tiah ing manager. “Marketing is a lot DeGrofft, of the management of more complicated now. I thought Wildhorse. “They have always had I would work at an ad agency in Portland or Seattle, but I absolutely a five year and a ten year plan.” Future plans tentatively

include another hotel tower and possible a convention center. The management of Wildhorse Resort and Casino have put a lot of effort into making their quest’s experience unique and ever-changing, and they realize that they could not do it without their staff of 800. According to DeGrofft, employees attend customer service training events, and are also welcome to participate in Wildhorse’s Wings of Flight training, a one year program that helps employees understand all of the many departments within the resort. Completion of this program improves their chances for career advancement within the resort. “It gives them a good solid idea of what happens in each department. It is a really good resume builder,” said DeGrofft. “They empower their employees and help them open doors to their own future. It is really top-down leadership,” said DeGrofft, who has been an employee of Wildhorse for 5 years. “I think the good thing about Wildhorse is the small town ideals with a big town feel. Everybody does their part when you live in a small town, and I think the small town hospitality comes across when you visit Wildhorse.” “It is how you treat your employees and your customers,” said Tovey. “It is all about relationships and we are fortunate that we have been able to develop those relationships over the last 20 years.”

About Wildhorse Resort and Casino: Centrally situated between Boise, Spokane and Portland, Wildhorse Resort & Casino is a premier destination for family getaways, business meetings and large conventions. The Resort features a

table games, keno, bingo and live entertainment Wednesday-Friday in our sports bar. Wildhorse is located just off I-84 at exit 216, four miles east of Pendleton, OR. Wildhorse is owned and operated by the Confederated Tribes of the Umatilla Indian Reservation.


24-hour casino, hotel, RV Park, 7 restaurants, 5-screen Cineplex, 18-hole championship golf course, travel plaza and tribal museum. Expanded in 2011, there is no destination experience like it in the Pacific Northwest. Wildhorse boosts over 1200 slots, all your favorite

Wildhorse Timeline

March 9, 1995 the first permanent facility opened. Progress continued on the bare land at the base of the Blue Mountains and in 1996 the first expansion was complete. It included a hotel and indoor swimming pool. Then in 1997 the 100 space RV Park and outdoor pool were added. An 18-hole Championship golf course was created as well. In 2002 another expansion took place by expanding the table games to include roulette and craps, making Wildhorse a full Vegas-style casino. The expansion also added a video game parlor and a child’s entertainment center. Then, by 2005, a conference center was added and included Cayuse Hall, The Walla Walla Room and the Umatilla Boardroom. In 2007 Wildhorse opened Traditions Buffet, Plateau Fine Dining and the Wildhorse Sports Bar, which allowed for live entertainment four nights a week. The $1.5 million expansion also added a second non-smoking slots floor, bringing the total number of slots to just over 800 of which 25% are in non-smoking rooms. The 2011 expansion was the largest expansion to date totaling over $45 million. The expansion added a 10-story Tower Hotel, which includes 202 hotel rooms, three new meeting spaces, a fitness area, retail space, and 3,500 square feet, which allows for up to 1400 slot machines and a five theater Cineplex. Next to the Cineplex a new child entertainment center and expanded arcade were added for the enjoyment of the younger guests.

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Northeast Oregon Business News


20 Years of entertainment

Hundreds Gather at the Wildhorse Pow Wow Each Year T

he Wildhorse Pow Wow has also been going strong for 20 years. In 1995, at the first Wildhorse Pow Wow, there were between 300 and 400 native dancers and 20 drums.

The pow wow has grown and now includes 30 drums. “The first pow wow was organized in less than four weeks,” said Tovey, “now we have a full committee that organizes it.” In 2014 Wildhorse provided more than $80,000 in cash and prizes. A variety of food, souvenirs and Native American arts and crafts

Wildhorse Foundation T

he Wildhorse Foundation, a community benefit fund established by the Confederated Tribes of the Umatilla Indian Reservation (CTUIR) was started in January 2001. Over 1,300 local and regional non-profits have benefited from the over $7.5 million given by the foundation since its inception. “We are able to give service to rural communities that would not normally have it,” said Tiah DeGrofft. There will be close to $850,000 given away in 2015 through the foundation. “I like to see the difference we make in the community,” said DeGrofft.

Confederated Tribes of the Umatilla Indian Reservation T

oday, the three tribes (Cayuse, Umatilla, and Walla Walla) of the Confederated Tribes of the Umatilla Indian Reservation have an enrollment of nearly 3,000 members. “We have a stable government,” said Tovey. “Our leadership is very stable.” According to Tovey the biggest challenges the tribe has had to face is figuring out how to keep their identity as the world changes. “We hold our culture in high regards. How to respect that and live in a new world, and how to survive in two different worlds has been the biggest challenge.” Language art classes through the tribe as well as their root digging festival and beading classes are ways that will help the younger generation of the tribe not lose what the elders have.

vendors are always on hand around the Pow Wow dance arena, offering everything from Indian fry bread to beadwork, clothing and jewelry. The Native American food and craft booths are free to the public.

Wildhorse Cheers for Wounded Warriors during Superbowl Pendleton, OR – For the third consecutive year, Wildhorse Sport Bar donates funds to the Wounded Warriors Project. A total of $4262 was raised during this annual fund-raiser. Manager, Kevin Haid, teams up with Wildhorse vendors for the donation of prizes, then raffle tickets are sold at the Sports bar during the Superbowl game. Prizes like pool tables, BBQ’s, city cruiser bikes and NFL Branded merchandise were won by Fans who watched the big game at the Sports Bar. Haid said his goal was $4000 this year, the largest amount raised at the event. Last year, just shy of $3000 was raised. “We are thrilled with the outcome,” said Haid. “Surpassing our expectations is always a great feeling, especially when it is going to a great cause like the Wounded Warriors.” 2015 marks the 20th Anniversary for Wildhorse Resort and Casino and giving back has always been a tradition of the Confederated Tribes of the Umatilla. While most people see and feel the effects of the funding the Wildhorse Foundation gives out annually, over $800,000 in 2014; Wildhorse specifically supports close to 1000 raffles, golf tournaments and fundraisers throughout the year with prize donations. That does not include $400,000 that is spent each year to support community events through sponsorships. “Wildhorse does a wonderful job of giving back to the regional communities,” said Diane Long, Marketing Director for Wildhorse. “Being a good community partner is a goal for all of us at Wildhorse, not only through monetary donations and sponsorships but also through our employees volunteering, using local vendors, and events such as this one!”

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Northeast Oregon Business News


Wholly Guacamole That Was Good!

The Bistro at Bellinger Farms By Lori Kimbel ellinger Farms is always a favorite stop when we go to Hermiston. With fresh fruits and vegetables, locally prepared food, gift items and a large selection of wines, we usually find it hard to walk out the door without something new to try.


On our last visit we decided to try out The Bistro. I ordered the Loaded Baked Potato soup, and yes, it was delicious. It makes me wish I was there right now. The Bistro serves local wines and has plenty of space for a large party, or if you would rather sit by the roaring fire that is an option as well. Surrounded in windows, The Bistro offers a pleasant atmosphere. The menu includes a variety of bagels with a variety of topping options including robust roast beef as well as pastra-

mi; sandwiches include peanut butter and Oregon jelly, grilled cheese and hot ham and Tillamook cheese. Fruit smoothies, coffee and sodas are also available. For dessert be sure to try a slice of pie or a piece of lava cake with ice cream. The Bistro is open from 8 a.m. to 5 p.m. Monday through Saturday. Visit www. The Bistro 1823 S. Hwy 395 Hermiston, Oregon 541-289-2355

Yakima’s Historic Rosedell Bed and Breakfast By Lori Kimbel

The home originally had 12 rooms and three bathrooms. Your first impression of this amazing Two additional bathrooms have Bed and Breakfast will be that it is fabulous; the since been added for a total of Rosedell is all of that and so much more. The five. The entrance features an porch swing you pass by as you make your way unglazed Italian marble fireplace to the entrance promises to relax you as you and stone columns. The walls overlook the park-like grounds. are adorned with the original, The neighborhood grew around this hand-painted, wall trim border. century old beauty, but the owners of the The living room, with its 12 Rosedell have always had the foresight to foot ceilings, has fluted colkeep the one and a half acres intact; which umns, parquet floors made only adds to the grandeur of Rosedell. of oak, maple, pecan, and A.E. Larson, the builder of the mahogany. The east side of Rosedell, was just 22 when he moved from the living room provides Photos by Lori Kimbel Minnesota to Yakima in 1884, where he bewindow seating within the Window seating in the rounded turret, where even the glass is rounded. came a very successful businessman. He owned rounded turret. The kitchen, once This will lead you to a small sitting room with a part of the Scott’s Lumber Company, built the in the basement, moved to the main tiled fireplace. Upstairs you will also find three Larson Opera House, he was the owner of the floor in the 1920’s and still has the original icebedrooms, two bathrooms, and a master bedDonnelly Hotel, the president of the Yakima First box. The dining room, with seating for 20, was room with a bathroom that has the original clawNational Bank, as well as the president of the added when the kitchen was moved to the main foot tub. The master bedroom also has a balcony. Sunshine Mining Company. floor. The fir beams, paneling and light from the The Red Room has its own private deck. In 1897 A.E. married Rose Hawkin large bay of windows accent the dining room The carriage house, near the rear of the Parker from Vancouver, Washington. Rose was well. property is next on the remodeling list. also a successful leader and was active in many What was once the library is now the Please visit the Rosedell website, www. women’s organizations and Parker Room. It is the largest of the, to learn more about the history was an active member of the guest rooms at Rosedell with 500 of this amazing home and to see the photographs Women’s Century Club. square feet of space on the main In 1904 A.E. and level. A grand four poster bed is in a that help to tell its story. The Rosedell Bed and Breakfast is locatRose decided to build a portion of the room, while the other ed at 1811 W. Yakima Ave. in Yakima, Washinghome. It took them five years side offers a cozy sitting area to ton. For reservations call 509-961-2964. and $50,000 to build the watch TV, read a book or just relax 9,600 square foot Neo Classic after exploring Yakima and the surRosedell mansion, built of sand stone from near- rounding area. You will find the bathroom in the by rim rock. Parker Room to be quite outstanding. Wrapped Various owners have lived in Rosedell, in marble and inlayed trim accent the elegant but for 20 years the grand mansion sat vacant bathroom. The double headed shower will surely and began to crumble. A water leak from the relax any tired muscle you may have. The heated upstairs bath was set on destroying the historic bathroom floors top off the entire experience, home, but Holli Radke took one look and knew convincing you that you should never have to she could rescue it from ruin. In 2005 she bought step onto another cold floor ever again. the home and began the daunting task of restor If you decided to venture out of the Parking the Rosedell to its former glory. er Room, notice the light oak wooden stair case.

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Northeast Oregon Business News


NEOHBA is Offering EOU delivers on request Several Scholarships for online MBA option T

he Northeast Oregon Home Builders Association (NEOHBA) is offering several $1,500 scholarships to help educate and train individuals in a “Profession” related to the building industry. The scholarship recipient will be selected on the basis of his/her potential to succeed. Applicants must currently be an enrolled high school senior or college student, be a resident of Umatilla, Morrow, Baker, Wallowa, or Union County, and have an interest in and intent to pursue a career in a Construction Profession. These professions/trades might be, but are not limited to; welding, heating and ventilating, heavy equipment operating, carpentry with wood or metal, electrical wiring, plumbing, construction managing architect/engineering (civil, landscape, landscaping, structural, etc.) Options for Applying for the Scholarships *Online: Click to Download Application *Mail: Northeast Oregon Home Builders Association: P.O. Box 436 Hermiston, OR 97838 Deadline for application is May 4, 2015, and can be mailed to the above NEOHBA address or given to high school counseling office.


required 45 credits in either five or nine terms. Online graduate tuition is $372 per credit hour, including fees, which totals $16,740 upon completion of the program. Applications will be accepted through April 15. The form and instructions are available at cobe/business/mba/admissions. For more information visit business/mba, call 541-962-3772 or e-mail Eastern Oregon University is the university that works with you! Prepare for the world beyond college with our high-quality liberal arts and professional programs. Classes are available when and where you need them – at our main campus in La Grande, online anywhere in the world or onsite at our centers across the state. Educational, cultural and economic growth is important to our region, state and nation. That’s why we are committed to providing a personal, student-centered experience in all that we do. Visit

Creatures of Habit By Shari Carpenter

s humans we develop habits; repetitive ways of doing things. Habits can be the easiest way, or they can be the hardest way but it’s our way. As consumers we create buying habits. Marketers such as me study those habits and call it Consumer behavior. The community of La Grande faces interesting challenges dealing with its consumers. Think about this; we develop our shopping habits over the course of our life. Those habits are nurtured by our family, our friends and affected by where we live. For now let’s leave the assumption of “better selection and better price” out of our conversation. Research tells us the habit or the “way” we shop is learned. I grew up very poor; my family was struggling dairy farmers with a small herd. My mom taught us to shop the clearance racks first; shop for bargains. We went to the grocery on best food day (double coupons). Dairy farmers are always on a schedule so we shopped time efficiently. My shopping habits were being formed; look for bargains, shop on best food day, shop time efficiently. As I moved though my live and moved to different states, ran a successful Advertising agency became successful financially, my shopping habits re-

LA GRANDE, Ore. (EOU) – Beginning this fall, students will have the option to complete a master of business administration degree entirely online from Eastern Oregon University. EOU’s College of Business is piloting the program as a 20-student cohort. The decision to expand the existing MBA – which is offered on campus in La Grande and onsite in Gresham, Hermiston and Ontario – to include an online option was fueled by business student feedback. “A survey revealed a large number of students are extremely interested in completing an MBA from EOU, but unfortunately, they are place-bound and unable to attend our on campus program,” said Donald Easton-Brooks, dean of the Colleges of Business and Education. “We are responding to our students’ needs by offering a completely online MBA.” Adding to the flexibility of the degree is the option to fulfill the

mained: look for bargains, shop on best food day, shop time efficiently. Technology has changed and the Internet provides easy one click shopping, but I still have the same habits. Given I am the older generation I prefer in person shopping but I come to the market with the same habits I have been nurturing throughout my life. Back to the interesting challenges La Grande faces in dealing with its consumers. Students come to La Grande with their habits. Habits make all of us feel comfortable; this is the way we have always done it. Consumers that live with their cell phones and computers develop dependency on them. It is quite natural to them go to the Internet to shop. It becomes a habit. Now let’s bring “better selection and better price” into the conversation. You bet the Internet opens the world to the shopper. As a local consumer why change your buying habits? Because you should. If you truly want to support the local community you should change. The Multiplier Effect happens when you shop at independent locally owned businesses. We have all heard “buy local” but the “why” is something we don’t always here. The multiplier effect means that local business recirculates a far greater percentage of

revenue compared to corporate owned businesses. Pretty simple buying local creates local wealth, jobs and a better tax base. More expensive? Perhaps; perhaps not. Add all the costs shipping or driving to another town coupled with your time probably not. Add in the potential benefit to the community and the multiplier effect wins every time. Back to my habits: 1) Look for bargains; we have some pretty good bargains in our community! 2) Shop on best food day; local providers and local producers hard to beat 3) Shop time efficiently; I live here and with easy parking and intimate shopping pretty easy to save time. From a marketing standpoint how to connect to and change habitual behavior? Well you will have to wait for the next article…

Eastern Oregon University Small Business Development Center 1607 Gekeler Lane, Rm 148 La Grande, OR 97850 Phone: (541) 962-1532 Email:

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Northeast Oregon Business News


Precision Rain Irrigation Serves Northeast Oregon Farmers

By Trish Yerges rrigation farmers in Northeast Oregon will shortly be entering their busy season, and no company is more poised to support them than Precision Rain LLC, 10209 N. McAlister Rd in Island City. When PGG moved out of this location, the irrigation system product line and its personnel remained but under the new assumed business name of Precision Rain LLC. They officially opened last January. “It’s the same people doing the same thing,” said general manager Robb Rea. “So the experience is still here and the knowledge and years of service, so we do know what we’re doing in the industry. We are looking for someone who wants to sell their product line here and who want to lease space from us.” Unlike the former PGG, Precision Rain does not offer feed or sell garden plants or cattle gates. If someone else wants to sell feed here, it is certainly set up for that, Rea said. “Precision Rain is strictly a pump and irrigation business,” said Kelly Emery, the purchasing and service representative. “We’re a Valley dealership for agricultural irrigation, and we sell and service domestic pumps for residential wells.” Besides the Valley pivot irrigation systems that are remotely controlled by mobile devices, Precision Rain also carries K-Line irrigation, which is perfect for pasture irrigation and Wade Rain Poweroll wheel lines with hydrostatic transmission. They also sell and service Kifco traveling irrigation systems called Ag-Rain Water-Reels, good for corn and cash crops, vegetables and produce, wastewater disposal, slurry and polo fields. They are ideal for irregularly shaped fields or where center pivots are not feasible. Precision Rain carries a large inventory of service parts. They sell Nelson 800 series control valves for applications such as system headworks, drip irrigation systems, pivot end


gun control valves and zone control. Their staff of 18 employees includes Emery, Rea and a 3-man sales team and 12-man service team who are all veterans of this specialized product line, many of them having 10 and 20 years of experience in irrigation systems. Gunnar Rolf is the sales rep for Wallowa County; Brad Sunderman is the sales rep for Union County and Dave Whelan is the sales rep for Baker County, Emery said. Don Starr is the service manager; Lucis Walke is the pump technician. For farmers who want to upgrade their existing systems, Precision Rain also acts as a liaison between farmers who want to sell and buy irrigation systems between themselves. “A lot of the used irrigation systems go from one farmer to another farmer’s field,” said Rea. “We facilitate that, but most of this stuff is in such high demand that it never shows up back here with us. It goes straight from one farmer to the next.” Besides upgrading, the irrigation industry has seen technology changes over the years that make farming easier. “There’s been less labor involved in terms of moving the pipes,” said Rea. “The industry is going more and more into mechanized irrigation to save labor. It gives farmers more peace of mind, knowing their whole field is being irrigated in a few days rather than worry about how to get the water across it in 10 days to 2 weeks.” With remote controlled pivot irrigation systems, farmers pull up an app on their smart phones and communicate with their machines. “The machine will text or email them to let them know something is not right or it stopped or the water stopped,” said Rea. “That’s the biggest communication. It’s more of a lifestyle peace of mind to know every-

thing’s working out there, and you don’t have to run 10-20 miles from home to see if it’s working.” Rea said their busy time extends from April 1 to early July. It’s fairly quiet through the summer when we do service work. Then in the fall, it cranks back up between September and November. The service department is sometimes called out to repair damage to systems due to violent weather events. “I was out in Wallowa County in early February looking at crashed machines due to wind damage. We got 4 machines out there. Three blew over, a quarter of the machine and four spans of a regular machine blew over. We had 2 machines in the Grande Ronde Valley that were down from December winds.” The service team at Precision Rain act as the claims adjusters in these cases because the machines are so specialized and there aren’t many companies that service them. So the insurance companies usually work with Precision Rain to assess damages. When irrigation season hits, it can be chaotic, said Rea. Farmers don’t want to be down for more than a few hours on their watering. They don’t want to get behind. In these cases, Precision Rain can be reached after hours for service at 541-786-0707. Precision Rain is open Monday through Friday 8 a.m. to 5 p.m. and they can be reached at 541-963-4195.

Umatilla Electric Considers Solar Project Development U

matilla Electric Cooperative is exploring whether to build one or more solar projects within its service territory in the next two years. Several factors play in the decision to consider solar generation opportunities, said Steve Eldrige, UEC General Manager and CEO. Solar costs are dropping, a solar investment tax credit is set to phase out at the end of 2016, and UEC faces a state mandate that will require UEC to purchase renewable energy in the near future. “Solar energy costs may be approaching a tipping point,” Eldrige said. “We are exploring whether we can make this investment on behalf of our Members without raising their cost of electricity.” UEC installed a 57-kilowatt solar array next to its Hermiston headquarters in December 2009. During the past five years, the small demonstration project has produced about 80,000 kilowatt-hours of power annually, enough to power the equivalent of five all-electric homes.

Today, solar capital costs have fallen 50 percent or more compared to when UEC installed its demonstration project, Eldrige said. “If we build larger, there will be economies of scale,” he said. “If we levelize the investment over the life of installation, we believe it may be affordable in the near term as well as for many years in the future.” When designated as a large utility under Oregon’s Renewable Portfolio Standards law, UEC will be required to seek out sources of “new” renewables such as wind or solar to provide a portion of its power supply. “This is a preparation for that requirement, and it may be better to act now than waiting until the requirement is implemented in the next four to six years,” Eldrige said. Any UEC investments would be timed to benefit from the federal 30-percent solar Investment Tax Credit, designed to encourage residential and commercial solar installations in the U.S. The legislation also permits utilities to use the credit.

First implemented in 2006, the tax credit primarily covers capital installation costs and is scheduled to be lowered to 10 percent after 2016. “Members can be assured that we will seek their input and keep them informed as we consider whether or not to make this investment,” Eldrige said. “Solar has caught the imagination of the general public and cost effectiveness of the technology is improving, so we will explore its feasibility here in our service area.”

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Northeast Oregon Business News

Elgin Health District Hopes to Replace Aging Clinic By Lori Kimbel

When the citizens of Elgin see a need

in their community they usually find a way to fill it. Because of this tenacity, a new emergency services building, a train depot complete with a tourist train, and a thriving opera house with live plays throughout the year have all come to fruition within the last decade. There is little doubt that the new health clinic, that they have now set their sights on, will also become a reality in the near future. The Elgin Health District, which is comprised of a five-member board, has already secured close to an acre of land within the city limits of Elgin. They have also initiated a fundraising campaign to acquire the money needed to construct the new facility. Government leaders from the state, county and city level were all on hand Saturday, February 21, to learn about the need, give their insight as to what can be done, and find out just how they can help turn the idea into a reality. “We do well with what we’ve got,” said Jared Rogers, treasurer of the Elgin Health District and emcee for the meeting, who also received his first stitches at six-years-old in what is still the current clinic. “We toured the facility earlier and we’ve painted a good picture of the need we have.” According to the 2014 Areas of Unmet Health Care Needed in Rural Oregon Report from the Oregon Office of Rural Health (ORH), Elgin ranks third from the bottom out of the 104 Oregon rural health clinics in being able to meet the overall health needs of its citizens. The mission of ORH is to improve the quality and availability of primary care providers. The report takes into account infrastructure: hospital buildings and road quality; beginning and end of life: low birth weight and mortality; quality of primary care: preventable hospitalizations; and health care resources: availability of primary care providers. It is the vision of the Elgin Health District that the new building will be able to house medical, dental, mental health services, physical therapy, and a pharmacy all under one roof. They will also add additional service providers, which will undoubtedly improve their ability to provide the health care which is needed in Elgin and the surrounding area. Currently the Elgin Clinic provides medical, dental and limited mental health services in a building that is too small for any more growth to take place. “If we want the clinic to be there we have to support it,” said former Elgin City Administrator, Joe Garlitz. According to Rogers, in order for the new building to be built, there will have to be community support, which will include raising roughly $600,000 in matching and in-kind donations. Community members who gathered at the Elgin Train Depot voiced their opinions on the health care issues Elgin faces with a clinic

Dr. Kim Montee of the Elgin Clinic, Jared Rogers, treasurer of the Elgin Health District, Senator Bill Hansell, and State Representative Greg Barreto.

that is too small to successfully tend to all of the medical needs of the community. “We really need to address health care issues,” said Dianne Greif, principal of Stella Mayfield Elementary School in Elgin, who often walks kids to the clinic for their appointments. “There are kids that go without health care because their parents can’t afford to take the time off of work to take them to the clinic. This clinic would be a huge benefit to our community. The ramifications for this clinic are bigger than you can even imagine.” “Coming from Athena, it is so important to have community involvement, it is what makes communities work,” said Senator Bill Hansell. The current situation at the Elgin Clinic is crowded to say the least; with room for just a few chairs in the waiting room, patients often have to stand while waiting for their appointment. In one small room patients can have their blood drawn near a rotating dental x-ray machine, while sitting across from a refrigerator and stackable washer and dryer. Dr. Kim Montee, the doctor at the Elgin Clinic, has his office in what was once a closet for all of the patient files. The main examining room has the only wheelchair access into the building, so patients have to be understanding when their appointment is interrupted by someone needing to come through their exam room to get either into, or out of, the building. On the outside of the building, parking is another issue, but thankfully the church across the street allows the staff to use their parking lot, so that the few spaces around the clinic can be used for patients. “Our staff, whether it be medical, dental, or mental health, have worked together in a positive manner during our growing pains and in doing so have managed to provide continued efficient and effective health care, even though they have outgrown our current facility,” said Elgin Health District board member, Melissa Coe. “That is what is hindering the current healthcare in our rural area.”

Medical staff at the Elgin Clinic is provided by the South County Health District and include Dr. Kim Montee, Nurse Practitioner Jamie Jo Haddock, Medical Assistant Amy Clark, referral specialist Debbie Rademacher, and medical receptionist Kanda Gresham. The dental staff includes Dr. Eli Mayes, D.D.S, Dr. Kali Gray, D.D.S., Kristi Case-Williamson, R.D.H, dental assistant Jolene Witkowski, and dental receptionists Lori Lathrop and Lezlie Reid. Shantay Mayes provides office management services from home. “We may be third from the bottom at present, but we are on top as far as our providers go” said Rogers. “We have been extremely lucky to find providers who all share the philosophy that providing health care to rural communities, where the need is often the greatest, is far more rewarding than trying to maximize one’s income.” There are approximately 4,000 visits that take place at the Elgin Clinic each year, half for medical and half for dental. “15,000 visits per year are possible with a new building,” said Montee. “Currently we are four months out on new medical patients and eight months out on Oregon Health Plan dental patients. With the recent health care changes there has been about a 17% increase in people who are trying to find providers. We could easily put another provider to work.” Even though the wait-list is long, there are still a couple timeslots available at the Elgin Clinic each day for urgent care, according to Haddock. “All of us here have a mission’s heart about our medicine; our heart is to help the community. Fortunately, this is our love,” said Montee. Two years ago the Elgin Health District decided to remodel the Elgin Clinic so that dentistry could once again be provided in ELGIN HEALTH DISTRICT Continuted on Page 17

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Oregon Poised to Benefit from the Reauthorization of Brand USA ed to Oregon’s environmental Brand USA Reauthorization mindset. Our abundant outdoor SALEM, Ore. –Dec. 17 – adventures, Scenic Bikeways and Brand USA, our nation’s destinaByways, organic food, biodynamtion marketing organization, was ic wineries and craft breweries reauthorized with broad bipartimake Oregon an ideal destination san support in the United States for international visitors.” House and Senate. Last night, In only its third year of President Obama signed the bill to operation, Brand USA’s economic give the organization a five-year impact through attracting internaextension. tional visitors is already extensive. The mission of Brand USA In 2013, independent research is to encourage increased interestimated the program drew more national visitation to the United than 1.1 million additional visitors States and to grow America’s to the United States, generating share of the global travel market. $3.4 billion in additional visitor In doing so, they aim to bring mil- spending and $1 billion in federal, lions of new international visitors local and state tax revenues. Rewho spend billions of dollars to turning $47 on every $1 spent on the U.S., thereby creating tens of promotion, the program supported thousands of new American jobs. nearly 53,000 new U.S. jobs. Travel Oregon consistently part In Oregon, travel and ners with Brand USA, ensuring tourism is a vital economic driver Oregon is a destination of choice and job creator. In 2013, travelfor the lucrative international trav- ers injected $9.6 billion into the el market.BUSA state’s economy and directly em “The international traveler ployed nearly 94,000 Oregonians. is incredibly important to OreThe international market congon’s economy, as they tend to tributed greatly to this economic stay longer and spend more while impact for the state. According to here on vacation,” said Todd a VisaVue® Travel report, in 2013 Davidson, Travel Oregon CEO. spending by international visitors “Visitors from abroad are attract-

increased 6.2% over the previous year. This international impact makes travel and tourism one of the three largest export-oriented industries in rural Oregon. “With limited resources, it is difficult for smaller communities to have a seat at the table when it comes to marketing our destinations,” said Lorna Davis, Executive Director of the Greater Newport Chamber of Commerce. “By leveraging our dollars with industry partners and Travel Oregon, we are able to have a greater marketing presence, which has had a profound impact on our local tourism economy. Brand USA has broadened that horizon further, increasing opportunities for us and other industry partners to market internationally where we might not have been able to before.” Oregon’s top international markets, according to visitation numbers are (in order): Canada, Japan, the U.K. China, Germany, Australia, Scandinavia, South Korea, Mexico, France, Brazil, India, Benelux and Italy. Portland is the smallest

market in the U.S. with enough international inbound and outbound travelers and cargo to support international air service to Europe, Asia, Canada and Mexico. Delta Airlines offers non-stop routes from Amsterdam and Tokyo, with Icelandair and Condor bringing new non-stop service from Reykjavik and Frankfurt, respectively in 2015. Alaska Airlines and Air Canada fly directly from Vancouver B.C. to PDX with seasonal flights from Calgary on Air Canada. Volaris provides a non-stop flight from Guadalajara, Mexico. Portland International Airport (PDX) enjoyed a 1.4% increase in international travelers in 2013,

Merger Closing Paves Way for Enhanced Shopping Experience PRNewswire/ -- AB Acquisition LLC and Safeway Inc. announced today that they have completed their proposed merger. Under the terms of the merger agreement first announced and unanimously approved by Safeway’s Board of Directors in March 2014, AB Acquisition LLC, the owner of Albertson’s LLC and New Albertson’s, Inc. (collectively “Albertsons”), will acquire all outstanding shares of Safeway. “We plan to be the favorite local supermarket in every community we serve,” said Safeway President and Chief Executive Officer Robert Edwards, who becomes President and CEO of the newly combined company, effective immediately. “We will do this by knowing, listening to,

and delighting our customers; providing the right products at a compelling value; and delivering a superior shopping experience. We will also continue to be active members of our local communities.” As previously announced, current Albertsons Chief Executive Officer Bob Miller will become Executive Chairman. “This is a transformative day for both Albertsons and Safeway. This merger creates a

unified, strong organization that is dedicated to bringing a better shopping experience to more customers across the country,” commented Miller. “Our combined geographic footprint, vast range of brands and products, and service-oriented staff will enable us to meet evolving shopping preferences.” The merger will create a diversified network that includes 2,230 stores, 27 distribution facilities and 19 manufacturing plants with over 250,000 employees across 34 states and the District of Columbia. The new company will be comprised of three regions and 14 retail divisions, supported by corporate offices in Boise, ID, Pleasanton, CA, and Phoenix, AZ. Banners will include Safeway, Vons, Pavilions, Randalls,

Tom Thumb, Carrs, Albertsons, ACME, Jewel-Osco, Lucky, Shaw’s, Star Market, Super Saver, United Supermarkets, Market Street and Amigos. In December, the companies announced the sale of 168 stores to four separate buyers, as divestitures required in order to secure U.S. Federal Trade Commission approval of the transaction.

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Northeast Oregon Business News


Elgin, a service that had been non-existent for more than 25 years. “I walked into the clinic and asked if they had a dentist,” said Eli Mayes. It was a perfect fit, a dental space without a dentist, and a dentist looking for dental space in Elgin. “It was one of those if you build it they will come situations. We have such an amazing, hard-working, progressive health board.” Mayes provides service to 1,000 patients per year; half are under 18 years old and the other half are adults. Grant-funded dental equipment As the conversations proat the Elgin Clinic gressed it came down not to ‘if ’, but ‘when’ a new clinic can be built. “We need to find a way to fund the physical locations so you have a place to practice,” said Hansell. “Here is an opportunity to help rural Oregon. I am willing and ready to do anything I can.” According to Hansell there needs to be three things in place before a project can be considered for funding though the state. There needs to be an identifiable need, there needs to be community support in the region as well as the community, and there has to be matching dollars. The more matching funds a community has, the more competitive they are in the process. Hansell also talked about some of the items that may have an effect on being considered for funding during the Capital Construction Committee process, the Oregon State Kicker, that is supposed to kick in, PERS reform, and the May economic forecast for Oregon. However, if all the necessary paperwork can be provided by late May or early June Hansell was optimistic that the Elgin Health Clinic could end up on the list of projects approved by the Capital Construction Committee this year. “We have the passion and we have the heart; we just don’t have enough of a facility,” said Montee. “Our community needs this and the surrounding area needs it,” said Elgin Health District board member, Cheryl Coe. As one can imagine the task of fund raising for a patient-centered medical clinic, for a five-member board, could be quite daunting, so in January the Elgin Health District obtained Westby Associates to represent them during the process from concept to completion. According to their website, Westby Associates, Inc. is a fund development firm that has generated in excess of $160,000,000 for organizations throughout the Pacific Northwest by specializing in: strategic planning, vision casting, campaign design and direction, governmental affairs, marketing, event management, foundation and grant support, and board development. They exist to provide consultant/practitioner services to nonprofits, assisting them to think and act strategically. “They are an intermediary of sorts between us and the political piece,” said Melissa Coe, “they know how to write the grants, they know the people to ask for federal, state and private sector monies and they are there to guide us in our endeavor. They have also helped us to write our vision statement and the development of our goals and steps to achieve them.” “This is so typical of Elgin,” said County Commissioner, Steve McClure. “Look at the opera house, look at the fire hall, look at this train depot. I take pride in this community. You are looking at a community that has done things for themselves and it speaks a lot about a community. This clinic really needs to be done. I believe what you are doing here can be modeled in other rural areas.”

Individual Development Account Program Helps Oregonians Help Themselves By Lisa Dawson

Since 2007, the Northeast Oregon Economic Development District (NEOEDD) has served as the regional administrator for Oregon’s Individual Development Account (IDA) program. This program has been extremely successful for residents in Baker, Union, and Wallowa counties. It’s a renewable program at the state level, and it needs your support to continue. NEOEDD offers IDAs to low- to moderate-income people to save money for a small business or education. NEOEDD staff have helped well over one hundred Northeast Oregonians plan for their future by saving with an IDA. So far NEOEDD has leveraged $540,920 in matched funds—that’s a half-million extra dollars that came into our region to support the educational and business aspirations of our neighbors. Another $144,130 is pledged to NE Oregon savers who are in the middle of the program. The IDA is, essentially, a financial responsibility program. It encourages participants to develop a regular habit of saving money, and requires all savers to take money-management lessons and business savers to learn the basics

of running a business in a free sixweek workshop series. What’s the incentive? A match of 300 percent! IDA savers receive $3 of match for every $1 they save, up to $12,000 total. This can put a good dent into a higher education bill, or pay for the equipment, signage, computer, or other investments in getting a business off the ground. We’ve helped people in agriculture, retail, and business services—maybe even someone you know! I’m proud to offer IDAs to Northeast Oregonians, and I hope you agree that this program can help someone build a better life. But the program needs your support. How can you help? Three ways: Share the program with people who might qualify for a savings-match. Contact your state legislators to support this program, or sign the petition: ITKz1. And, if you really feel like this program is special, contribute to it directly (you’ll receive a tax credit—once the program is renewed!). Right now, the most important thing is to renew the program. So, please sign the petition today! Lisa Dawson is the executive director of Northeast Oregon Economic Development District, which serves Baker, Union, and Wallowa counties.

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The Rocks District AVA Gains Approval from the TTB TTB Approves New AVA: The Rocks District of Milton-Freewater Located in Northeastern Oregon, within the Walla Walla Valley AVA WALLA WALLA VALLEY, Wash., Feb. 6. 2015 /PRNewswire-USNewswire/ -The Alcohol and Tobacco Tax and Trade Bureau (TTB) today announced it will establish The Rocks District of Milton-Freewater as the newest American Viticulture Area (AVA) on Monday, Feb. 9. The AVA is situated on an alluvial fan of the Walla Walla River, where the river exits the foothills of the Blue Mountains and enters the Walla Walla Valley. It lies entirely within the state of Oregon and includes part of the town of Milton-Freewater. The area contained within the Rocks District also lies within the Walla Walla Valley AVA, which in turn is entirely within the larger Columbia Valley AVA. The distinguishing feature of The Rocks District of Milton-Freewater is its soil, which consists primarily of dark-colored basalt cobblestones. The cobblestone-rich soil is very well drained, which encourages the vines to root deeply. Due to their coarse texture, the soils are not easily eroded, so cover crops are not required and the cobblestones can be left exposed on the surface where they absorb solar radiation. Heat from the sun-warmed stones promotes growth early in the season and assists ripening during the late summer and early fall. Nineteen wine producers have vineyards within the boundaries of The Rocks District of Milton-Freewater AVA, which contains approximately 3,770 acres and currently has approximately 250 acres of commercially producing vineyards. The AVA application effort was organized and managed by Steve Robertson of Delmas/SJR Vineyard along with seven

other wine growers and producers. Dr. Kevin R. Pogue, a professor of geology at Whitman College in Walla Walla, submitted the petition to the TTB. Dr. Pogue is pleased the growers shared his idea that the AVA be highly uniform with regard to the physical environment within its boundaries. “The concept behind AVAs is to recognize regions that have truly unique growing conditions that are expressed in the wines. I believe we have remained true to that spirit, creating an AVA with the most uniform terroir in the United States,” he said. “The Rocks District lies on one landform, with very uniform topography and climate, and 96-percent of the soils belong to the Freewater soil series.” The Walla Walla Valley AVA as a whole spans northeastern Oregon to southeastern Washington and has a long agricultural history. A wide variety of crops have been cultivated in The Rocks District since the late 1800s, and in addition to wine grapes the area still produces commercially-grown apples, cherries, prunes and plums. Wines produced from vineyards planted in The Rocks District in the mid-1990s were quickly recognized by wine critics as among the finest in the country. “Wines from The Rocks District of Milton-Freewater have been earning accolades for years,” said Duane Wollmuth, Executive Director of the Walla Walla Valley Wine Alliance. “The Walla Walla Valley has a proud tradition of growing world-class wine grapes, and this designation will help winegrowers better tell the story of the unique terroir on which their grapes are grown.” “The Rocks District of Milton-Freewater marks Oregon’s 18th AVA, another important step in designating the distinctive and high-quality wine growing regions within our state,” said Ellen Brittan, chairwoman of the Oregon Wine Board. “By gaining AVA status,

SJR Vineyard in The Rocks District of Milton-Freewater producers who grow or source fruit from these vineyards can better differentiate the unique characteristics of their wines.” “Washington State Wine is excited to collaborate with our partners in the Walla Walla Valley AVA and in Oregon to share the story of The Rocks District of Milton-Freewater,” said Steve Warner, president of Washington State Wine, which promotes awareness of wineries and growers in Washington State and its cross-border AVAs. “This isn’t about state borders. It’s about the Pacific Northwest and our growing reputation as home to world-class wines. We feel this new AVA designation further recognizes the unparalleled terroir of this area.”

Oregon’s Wine Industry Contributes $3.35 Billion To Oregon’s Economy The Oregon wine industry continues to substantially grow its contribution to the state’s economy according to a study released by the Oregon Wine Board today. In 2013 the sum of all economic activity in the state related to Oregon wine was more than $3.35 billion, a 28% growth in the economic impact of wine in Oregon since the last study, in 2010. In addition, the industry contributed 17,099 wine-related jobs to Oregon, paying $527 million in wages, and brought $207.5 million to the state in wine-related tourism revenues. “Oregon’s wine industry is excited to be such a dynamic economic performer for the state,” said Ellen Brittan, chairwoman of the Oregon Wine Board. “The increasing awareness of Oregon’s wine quality is sparking global demand for Oregon wines, which in turn is fueling the industry’s growth, enabling us to add new jobs

and bring in new revenue to the state.” The nature of Oregon’s wine industry means that it has far-reaching beneficial economic effects. As the wine industry grows, many associated parts of Oregon’s economy prosper as a result. Wine is a consumer product that requires large amounts of capital investment, wage-paying labor, and ongoing purchases of services, equipment, and supplies. Allied industries, such as tourism, hospitality, packaging, distribution, and retailing benefit from the wine industry’s2 of 3 success. Compared to other agricultural products, wine typically adds more value and keeps more of its revenues and profits inside the state’s economy because almost all of the wine supply and production chain is Oregon-based. The growth of the wine industry is felt throughout the state.

The increase in the number of wineries since 2010 in Southern Oregon, the Columbia Gorge and Walla Walla, and the Willamette Valley has ranged by region from 25% to 90%. Vineyard acres throughout the state have grown significantly since 2010: Southern Oregon grew by 147%, the Columbia Gorge and Oregon portion of the Walla Walla Valley by 26%, and the Willamette Valley by 8%. • Oregon wine grapes are now the state’s most valuable fruit crop, valued at $128 million • The Oregon wine industry directly created 9,837 jobs • 605 Oregon wineries had revenues totaling over $363 million from the sale of wine • $127 million were added to state and local government through taxes and licensing • Since 2011, vineyard acres have grown by 18%, the number of wineries grew by 45% and Oregon wine sales volume has increased by 39% to 2,780,237 cases

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Northeast Oregon Business News

Members of the Elgin Lions Help Create ‘Chitty’ Car T

he Elgin Opera House is at it again. They are preparing to bring another classic tale to life, right on stage of the 100 year old historic Elgin Opera House. Chitty Chitty Bang Bang, which has been newly adapted for stage, will be opening March 7th and running every weekend through April 4th. The show boasts complex sets, special effects, and one very amazing car known affectionately as “Chitty.” Two separate teams have contributed to Chitty’s construction—one team of craftsman who spent two months building the core car on top of a golf cart chassis and crafting retractable wings, and one team who tended to engineering details that give the car lifting and turning capabilities, as well as an inflatable boat effect. Elgin Lion’s Club members, Jared Rogers, Mike Garver, John Director Terry Hale admits the Broughton, and Daryl Hawes gather around Chitty, one of the most Opera House has “outdone” itself with this unique props the Elgin Opera House has created to date.

production, and states, “We have put more effort, time, and money into Chitty than any other stage prop we have used at [the] Opera House.” The talented, local actor, Rick Mugrage, will play Caractacus Potts. Chitty Chitty Bang Bang will be directed by Terry Hale and Choreographed by McKaye Harris. Potts is an eccentric inventor who restores an old race car with the help of his children, Jeremy, played by Henry Fager and Jemima, played by Gia Tagnoli. They soon discover the cars magical powers, as does the evil Baron Bomburst, played by Kylle Collins. Other members of the cast include local favorites, Jeanette Smith, Wes Rampton, Heidi Laurance, Gary Bottger, Blake Rasmussen and Chad Rasmussen.

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Northeast Oregon Business News

Oregon Arts Commission Grant Recipients Art rallying commu nity around a shared need is the focus of 34 Oregon projects awarded $200,000 in 2015 Arts Build Communities grants from the Oregon Arts Commission. Vacant downtown storefronts become celebrations of community in Corvallis; incarcerated youth fulfill treatment requirements by sharing their stories through pictures or performance in Clackamas County; and in Enterprise, Fishtrap inspires 1,700 people to read Luis Alberto Urrea’s “Into the Beautiful North” before engaging in discussions, events and activities that explore Latino issues. NE Oregon Recipients: The Arts Council of Pendleton, $6,000, Pendleton; Pendleton Ballet Folklorico Ritmo Alegre, $3,500 Cornucopia Arts Council, $4,500, Halfway; Crow’s Shadow Institute of the Arts, $6,195, Pendleton; Fishtrap, $7,000, Enterprise.

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Profile for Lori Roach

Northeast Oregon Business News March/April  

Northeast Oregon Business News Connecting Communities Throughout Northeast Oregon

Northeast Oregon Business News March/April  

Northeast Oregon Business News Connecting Communities Throughout Northeast Oregon


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