Our Town North: Nov. 1, 2023

Page 1

Something Fun

Something to Talk About

Fall events include pies, apple pressing & poker – Page 4

Vol. 20 No. 21

Mount Angel, Silverton, make national lists – Page 12

COMMUNITY NEWS Serving Mt. Angel, Silverton, and Scotts Mills

November 2023

Volunteers – the hands and heart of fire districts – Page 17

Our Town P.O. Box 927 Mt. Angel, Or 97362



Sports & Recreation

Fox football cliches league title – Page 25


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Close to downtown Silverton, 2bd, 1ba. 1180 sq ft craftsman style home. Large fenced backyard. Ideal investment. 620 Water St., Silverton MLS#809238


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S. Abiqua Rd. Silverton, Beautiful, buildable creek front homesite on 1.310 acres. MLS#806097

Under Contract


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3.080 acres, private building site in city limits, maybe dividable. SW exposure. Standard Ave., Brownsville. MLS#777782


Buildable residential lot, 7650 sq. ft. Property has iconic water tower located on it. 617 Keene Ave. Silverton. MLS#802507

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Contents Something Fun Grange hosts pie contest......................4 Silverton Co-op, GeerCrest join forces for apple cider pressing.............. 5 Mt. Angel Turkey Shoot returns............ 5

Fire districts run on volunteers........... 17

John’s Waterproofing backs

Resort, Garden, settle lawsuits........... 18

Legion Hall repairs..............................6

Dog owner arrested in Keeton case..... 18

New facility almost ready for

Officers train at FBI Academy............. 19

Sheltering Silverton............................ 7

Man pleads guilty to luring minors..... 19 Passages..............................22

Briefs....................................... 8 Business

Ratliff reflects on OSU experience....... 24


A Grin at the End........26

Something to Talk About Schools rank high on national list....... 12 O’fest ranked No. 2 in nation.............. 12 STEM trip journeys to Europe in ‘25..... 13


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Sports & Recreation

Wurdinger makes ag-parts more accessible for regional customers.........9 Bond Measure Profile: Silverton High... 11


Something to Think About

Legal Matters

Helpful Hands

Kawell Construction

Datebook.............................. 14

Foxes beat West Albany, clinch title.... 25

Marketplace...................27 On the Cover Mt. Angel Fire District responding to a vehicular accident. SUBMITTED PHOTO

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Locally owned and operated Paula Mabry Editor & Publisher

Stephen Floyd Digital Editor & Reporter

Jim Kinghorn Advertising Director

Melissa Wagoner Reporter

Our Town

P.O. Box 927 Mount Angel, OR 97362 401 Oak St. Silverton, OR 97381 503-845-9499 ourtown.life@mtangelpub.com ourtownlive.com

DeeDe Williams Office Manager

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Our Town mailed free to residents and businesses in the 97362, 97375, 97381 zip codes. Subscriptions for outside this area are $48 annually.


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The deadline for placing an ad in the Nov. 15 issue is Nov. 6. Thank you for spending time with Our Town. Your comments and suggestions are always welcome.


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oregonhomeloans.org November 2023 • 3

Something Fun

Best pie in town? Enter Silverton Grange’s contest to find out By Melissa Wagoner “Who doesn’t like tasting pie?” Silverton Grange member Cindy Gyurgyik said when asked about the upcoming Pie Contest and Auction being held in the Grange Hall at 201 Division St. on Sunday, Nov. 5, 2 to 4 p.m. “We will have two categories of pies – fruit and custard,” Gyurgyik said. “We will have three judges for each category… familiar faces of our community with discerning taste buds!” And an appetite for pie. At least that’s what Gyurgyik hopes, as she, too, will be entering the contest. “I am a baker from very young,” she said. “I’ve baked and made pies for as long as I can remember.” While Gyurgyik did not divulge the flavor of pie she will be entering this year, she did say, “My favorite pie is the one on a plate in front of me! Maybe lemon meringue, maybe pecan.”

Pie Contest & Auction Pie tasting, silent auction, music and kids’ activities Silverton Grange Hall 201 Division St. Sunday, Nov. 5, 2 to 4 p.m. No contest or admission fees To enter visit, www.silvertongrange.org But no matter the variety, Gyurgyik advises, “Good pie starts with a good crust… A little hint to swaying the judges is a good story about your pie or your piemaking experiences. This is part of your entry form or can be submitted before the event.” Also required for entry is, not one, but two identical pies. “One will be for tasting – judges first then the public. The second pie is for the

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Entries and participants at the 2019 Pie Contest at Silverton Grange. COURTESY CINDY GYURGYIK

auction,” Gyurgyik explained, noting that all proceeds from the pie sales will go toward purchasing a new HVAC system for the hall. “We hope to raise some funds but more importantly for everyone to have a good time and maybe be curious about the Grange,” Gyurgyik said. “We are growing our membership and bringing in younger folk with new events such as monthly family game night and quarterly Hoedown Concert.” For information about these events, or to enter a pie in the upcoming contest, visit www.silvertongrange.org.

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Apple harvest promotes food resilience

Turkey Shoot returns with new venue

By Melissa Wagoner

By Stephen Floyd

so cool.”

On Saturday, Nov. 4 “the Silverton Food Co-op is joining forces with GeerCrest Farm for a fun family event” – a community apple cider pressing and fall pop-up food market.

After three years on pause, Mount Angel American Legion Post 89 is celebrating the return of its annual Turkey Shoot with both new prizes and a new venue.

The Legion had been planning to host its 80th annual Turkey Shoot in 2020, but COVID-19 lockdowns forced the cancellation of the event that year and in 2021. Then in 2022, an outbreak of bird flu caused turkeys to become scarce and expensive and the event was canceled again.

The event is scheduled for Saturday, Nov. 18, 1 to 6 p.m. at Tiny’s Tavern, 155 N. Main St., Mount Angel. Proceeds support Post 89 and the Legion Hall.

“We’ll have apples be the star,” co-op board member Beth Myers-Shenai said of the occasion, which will include both a cider pressing party as well as the sale of locally grown foods like hazelnuts, turkeys and – of course – apples. “We’re trying to focus on local produce,” Myers-Shenai said, describing the many ways this fall-inspired pop-up will differ from those the co-op has offered in the past. “We’re going to bake up a few sample goodies and we’ll have… recipe cards so people get inspired.” Inspiring the community to partake in more locally grown food is what the Silverton Food Co-op is all about and, increasingly, that’s what GeerCrest Farm is focused on as well. “I envision the next lifecycle of the farm to focus on community food resilience,” Erika Toler – who owns the farm alongside her husband, Jim – said, expressing the goals she and Jim have for the farm as less focused on the farm’s past than its future.

Cider pressing at GeerCrest Farm. COURTESY ADAM McKINLEY

The event will feature three tables of 31 and one table of showdown poker. Hands will be $5 each and players of all skill levels are welcome to compete. A $1,000 cash prize drawing is being held in the leadup to the Turkey Shoot, with 200 tickets being sold for $20 each at Tiny’s Tavern. A winner will be drawn on Veterans Day, Nov. 11.

Community Apple Cider Pressing & Market GeerCrest Farm 12390 Sunnyview Rd. NE, Salem

Event co-organizer Martha Kosel, an Army veteran and a Post 89 member, said the Legion is “pretty doggone excited” about the return of the Turkey Shoot.

Saturday, Nov. 4, 10 a.m. Free entry. Apple donations welcome. Bring your own cider container.

“The whole Turkey Shoot this year is different,” she said. “...It’s just going to be

needs to have access to land and to be involved in food production... This place has the past, present and future. It’s history evolving.”

“Now is the time to connect with other And what better way for the evolution to food organizations in Silverton,” she said. begin than a harvest party promoting a “I would like to become a food processing more resilient local food system? hub… to complete the food cycle and “It feels like the perfect connection,” become a foundation of the Silverton CBL community. I feel strongly that everyone#00013137 Myers-Shenai said.



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This year also saw the Turkey Shoot move to Tiny’s Tavern from the Legion Hall on E. Charles Street. Kosel said Tiny’s has been a long-time supporter of Post 89, and having it at a new location helps alleviate the burden of setup for the organizers.

Stay C

The Women’s Auxiliary will be on hand with a bake sale as well as an hourly prizeinformation agenda item drawing to support their group. rescheduli

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Residential Winter Sewer Averaging Has Begun Like many other cities Silverton does not meter the wastewater you discharge, and instead uses a sewer averaging period. This time period begins with your meter read in mid-October to your meter read in mid-April. The assumption for wastewater use is that during the winter months of November through April water usage is primarily inside your residence and which is treated at the Wastewater Treatment Plant. Each year, the average sewer usage is calculated and reflected on the bill mailed out at the end of May. Unless there is a rate change, this is your fixed sewer rate until the following May when the sewer average is recalculated. This means the sewer portion of a customer’s bill will not increase in the summer months due to irrigating, car washing, filling of swimming pools or any other outdoor water use. All new and existing residential customers who don’t have at least four months of usage for the averaging period will have their sewer charge based on actual usage up to the maximum amount of $93.77 per month (based on 1.5 times the city-wide average water consumption of 516 cf-updated annually). For more information, please visit our website at


Be Informed

Complete details on these topics are located on the City’s website: www.Silverton.or.us

www.ourtownlive.com Facebook.com/OurTown.SMASM

Bird flu was a challenge once more this year, but organizers came up with a creative solution. Players who win a hand of poker or 31 will be offered a $20 Safeway gift card, usable for food or gas. Winners could also choose pepperoni or Oktoberfest sausage from Ebner’s Custom Meats rather than a gift card.


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November 2023 • 5

Helping Hands

Legion Hall Business sponsors upgrades

Distribution day set for coats contributed in drive The Elizabeth Ashley Hoke Memorial Trust sponsored the collection of new and gently used coats for kids and families during October. Coats were dropped off at Friends of Abiqua Heights, Willamette Valley Bank, Silver Creek Fellowship Church, Adventist Community Services, Immanuel Lutheran Church, Silverton Senior Center, Hi-School Pharmacy, Gear-Up, Sunflower Farms, First Christian Church, St. Paul’s, Les Schwab Tires, Robert Frost School. Butte Creek School, Umpqua Bank and Silverton Elks. Now they will be distributed Nov. 9, 9 a.m. to noon, at Adventist Community Services, 1159 Oak St. and the Silverton Community Center, 421 S. Water St. Email info@ehoketrust.org for more information. You can donate online at www.ehoketrust.org.

By Stephen Floyd The American Legion Hall in Mount Angel has some new upgrades thanks to sponsorship from a local business, and Legion leaders say it has already made a difference. Silverton-based John’s Waterproofing reached out to Legion Post 89 in September with a desire to support a veterans’ group for their regular community sponsorship program. Post 89 Adjutant Jim Kosel, an Air Force veteran, said he met with John’s Waterproofing employees for a tour of the Legion Hall to identify possible facility improvements. Kosel’s wife, Martha Kosel, an Army veteran and fellow Post 89 member, said the work was much-needed. “They did so much for us,” she said. “This building was old.” The Legion Hall was first constructed in 1936 as part of FDR’s New Deal infrastructure programs. Many of the fixtures found during the tour with John’s Waterproofing were original to the building, including the restroom toilets.

These were replaced with brand new toilets, though plumbers had to contend with cement seals binding them to the floor, said Jim Kosel. They also installed a larger sink in the kitchen and new cabinets and counter space in the reception room downstairs, as well as new LED lights in the two meeting rooms upstairs. John’s Waterproofing also ordered a chair caddy to help transport seating to the events the Legion is involved in, from Memorial Day services to Fourth of July fireworks. The business already helps the Legion post hundreds of flags on gravesites for Memorial Day. These improvements will help more than Legion members, said Jim Kosel, as other groups also use the building. The Knights of Columbus use one of the meeting rooms for their monthly gatherings, while firefighters from the Mount Angel Fire District use the reception area to decompress after regular trainings. The Legion Hall can also host private events such as celebrations of life or veterans reunions. Martha Kosel said supporting veterans and their families in these ways is part of the mission of Post 89, in keeping with the U.S. military’s motto of “No man left behind.”

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Sheltering Silverton Closing in on move Tree of Giving season opens

The annual Tree of Giving program sponsored by the Silverton Zenith women’s Club starts Nov. 1.

By James Day Sheltering Silverton’s move to a new space in the city’s Public Works complex is just a week or so away.

Community members can help families during the holiday season by purchasing new clothes for children.

Sarah White, the nonprofit’s executive director, told Our Town “we are very close to completing the renovations of our building.” Key work to be done on the modular structure includes plumbing, adding a kitchen and a bathroom, electrical work and fire sprinklers as well as Americans With Disabilities Act compliance modifications. The modular building and four pallet shelters at the site eventually will be able to accommodate 20 people, using $564,000 in state money that is part of the Governor Tina Kotek’s $130 million emergency appropriation for housing and homelessness from earlier this year. “We continue to use the governor’s [emergency operations] funds to operate our shelter and expanded day center in the basement of the Community Center, though our capacity will increase at the new site,” White said. White said Sheltering Silverton will be out of the Community Center by December. “We will cease all services there and just take a few extra

The new Sheltering Silverton facility off Silverton Road. JAMES DAY

weeks to clean out our spaces,” White said. Other tenants at the Community Center are getting anxious about their status. The Oregon Military Department owns the building. The city’s lease expires in March but will move its City Council operations to the new Civic Center early next year. Silverton Area Community Aid plans to move out of the basement and into the former Ratchet Brewery building, but will not be in a position to do so by March. The Silver Falls YMCA and local pickleball players also use the center. Mayor Jason Freilinger said the City Council likely will discuss the situation at one of its November meetings.

Families wishing to sign up for the gifts can do so at Immanuel Lutheran Church, 303 N. Church St. on Nov. 1, 4-6 p.m.; Nov. 2, 6-8 p.m.; Nov. 3, 10 a.m.-noon; Nov. 6, 10 a.m.-noon; Nov. 7, 4-6 p.m. and Nov. 8, 6-8 p.m. To participate you must live in Silverton or Scotts Mills and have children in the Silver Falls School District. Parents should bring a photo ID, the child’s birth certificate, proof of address and proof of income and clothing sizes. Call Jan at 503-873-4809 for more information or to get questions answered.




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HOURS Tues-Fri 8am-5pm Saturday 8am-2pm November 2023 • 7

Briefs Lunaria presents November art shows Two new shows will be on display at Lunaria Gallery from Nov. 1 – 27, with an opening reception on First Friday, Nov. 3, 7 - 9 p.m. “Rhythmical Color” features botanical portraits and abstractions by Diane Trevett. Inspired by natural subjects, Trevett’s explores color, brushwork and movement in flowers. She is fascinated by unique form, diverse color and hidden details, and uses the final composition to enhance these qualities. Upstairs, the Loft gallery space welcomes guest artists, Alluscion Æ and Josh W. Kinsey. Alluscion Æ’s paintings explore the liminal state between the material world and the unseen connected network beyond our understanding. Kinsey’s work titillates one’s humors and imagination, while simultaneously attempting to validate his existence. Lunaria is open daily from 11 a.m. - 5 p.m. at 113 N. Water St., Silverton.

Job-seekers to connect with opportunities at county job fair event The Careers Over Coffee Job Fair event will be held on Wednesday, Nov. 15, 11 a.m. – 2 p.m., at Broadway Commons, 1300 Broadway St. NE, Salem. This is a free event, and no registration is required. Looking to kickstart your career or find a new job opportunity? This unique event is your chance to connect with employees from Marion County in a relaxed and informal setting while enjoying a free cup of coffee. The Careers Over Coffee job fair offers a more intimate setting compared to traditional job fairs, allowing you to engage in one-on-one conversations with county employees. The personalized approach gives you the opportunity to make a lasting impression and showcase your skills and qualifications directly to recruiters.

Get ready to network with some of the county’s largest departments including Health & Human Services, the Sheriff’s Office, Public Works, and the Juvenile department. There will also be an opportunity to apply onsite for positions. Job-seekers should be prepared to discuss experiences and aspirations. This event allows people to forge connections and gain insights about Marion County and potential career paths. Whether you’re a recent graduate, an experienced professional, or someone looking for a change, the event is designed to help you find your dream job. For more information, visit: www.co.marion.or.us/HR/ Pages/jobs.aspx/.

33rd annual Thanksgiving benefit Jazzercise class set for Silverton For the 33rd year, Silverton Jazzercise invites the public to the Thanksgiving morning benefit class for Silverton Area Community Aid on Thursday, Nov. 23, at 9 a.m. at the Silverton Community Center, 421 S. Water St. ALLUSCION Æ

Admission is $5 or three food items, with all proceeds going to Silverton Area Community Aid’s food bank.



There are donors that have pledged to match the cash receipts from the class. Participants are welcomed to give more than the minimum entrance fee to take full advantage of the donors’ generosity. People of all fitness levels are welcome. Prepare for an hour-long aerobic and muscle-toning workout. For information contact Jazzercise instructor, Andi Morgan at 503-873-8210 or at AndiTMorgan@aol.com.

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One stop shop

Helping farmers by stocking agricultural parts

By Melissa Wagoner

Wurdinger Manufacturing and Ag Supply Store

When the owners of Wurdinger Manufacturing in Silverton added a parts store to their well-established fabrication business in 2019, the goal was to cut down on the number of trips their fabricators were making to Salem by stocking the pieces they needed most often. It wasn’t long before the company’s customers got wind of the new addition and everything changed. “There were customers south of us who, before we were here, were driving another 45 minutes past us,” he continued. “Now we’ve got a good enough selection and enough expertise we’ve had people come in from as far away as Independence.” Stocking everything from tiny parts like bearings and tee jets to larger equipment like no drip spray guns and even hitches, the staff of Wurdinger Manufacturing’s new Ag Supply Store take pride in offering one-stop shopping for those in the ag, forestry, manufacturing, mechanical, drilling and food supply industries as well as for those who just need a specialized part.

A fabrication shop building custom machines as well as selling, repairing and modifying existing parts and equipment. 4730 Brush Creek Drive NE, Silverton www.wurdingermanufacturing.com The crew of Wurdinger Manufacturing’s onsite Ag Supply Store: Gerhard Greve, Jon Kamrath, Jakobie Bloedorn and owner, Sid Wurdinger. MELISSA WAGONER

and repair,” longtime employee Gerhard Greve said. Additionally, Ag Supply Store staff members Jakobie Bloedorn and Jon Kamrath provide a level of knowledge that allows them to repair or source a part for just about any machine customers bring in.

And they don’t just sell the parts. True to their origins, they repair and manufacture them as well.

“I grew up fabricating,” Kamrath said. “I fabricated all over the valley. Then Sid brought me in to do maintenance and to install equipment… I just worked on a machine recently, that I built.”

“We just hired a person who can repair hydraulic cylinders, motors and pumps on top of doing welding

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“That way, if they’re using something often and it’s prone to wear and tear it’s right there,” Wurdinger added. Or, if not onsite, then perhaps a short distance away, at the Ag Supply Store where Wurdinger maintains, “customers tend to be very happy when they come in.”

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“We go out and do a parts inventory and drop off parts so [customers] don’t have to stop, they can just keep going,” Kamrath said, defining a practice that – initially created for use by Wurdinger Manufacturing itself – is now being offered to farmers and businesses around the valley.

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10 • November 2023




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Silverton High By Stephen Floyd When Silverton High School (SHS) was completed in 2009, the campus benefited from modern design and tailor-made classrooms. Students could learn to cook in a commercial kitchen, learn the basics of firefighting in full gear, and learn car maintenance in a multi-bay auto shop. SHS teachers interviewed by Our Town said a custom learning space helps students find a passion for a specific career path and feel a sense of belonging. Silver Falls School District (SFSD) spokesperson Derek McElfresh said they hope to achieve similar results through improvements at other schools with the proposed $138 million bond on the Nov. 7 ballot. Over the last year the SFSD Bond Advisory Committee and district officials – following a series of school-by-school community listening sessions – constructed a plan to address critical facility challenges to student safety and well-being. After reviewing the proposal, the SFSD board decided to put the $138 million bond measure necessary to carry out those plans before the voters. If passed, a state grant of $4 million would also be awarded. The bond addresses repairs and renovations at ten district-owned schools, and replaces Silverton Middle School. For property owners within the district, the estimated cost per thousand tax increase over the current rate is $1.60 per $1,000 in assessed value. The plan calls for $7.95 million for Silverton High School.

Teachers link modern design to student success

Proposed expenditure for Silverton High School from bond on Nov.7 ballot Grades: 9-12, Year Built: 1997 / 2009 Total Students for 2022-23 Year: 1,222 Total $ of Bond for SHS: $7,952,397 • Safety & Security: $1,289,000 • Updates & Repairs: $4,413,397 • Heat/Cool & Air Quality: $2,250,000 • Accessibility: $0 Total for All Schools: $142,297,915* * Plan assumes $138M bond passes, earning a $4M State grant, creating the $142M total fund. The current high school campus was the result of a $10.4 million bond passed in 1996 and a $47.5 million bond passed in 2006. Phase 1 was completed in 1997 and served as the freshman-only high school until Phase II was finished in 2009. The current bond proposal includes around $5 million to replace the 26-year-old roof, which suffers from chronic leaks that have resulted at times in falling classroom ceiling tiles. The bond would also replace the HVAC system, as the current heating and cooling for the entire building runs off the original system for the 1997 wing. There would also be security upgrades, improvements to phones and data systems, and replacement of some proprietary computer systems that have become obsolete. SFSD hopes these repairs can help

SHS students continue to benefit from the building’s modern design and intentionally-built classrooms. In Katie Kantrowitz’ speech and debate class, the room includes three smaller prep rooms where students practice. Kantrowitz said the classroom can get very loud with 36 students, and the value of the prep rooms has been “incalculable.” “There’s a sense of pride and ownership,” she said. “They know this room was built for them.’” Kantrowitz also teaches French and Spanish. Though her room is separate from the other language arts teachers, she said she would not trade it for another. Kim Emmert’s culinary arts classroom has a licensed commercial kitchen betterequipped than some local restaurants, with abundant prep and cooking space and its own walk-in freezer. Students even put their cooking skills to the test when the program caters outside events. Emmert said students often go on to more advanced programs, work at local eateries or even start their own restaurants and are “truly excited to go and do the next step.” Other unique spaces on campus include the performing arts rooms and theater, the shops for woodworking, metalworking and auto repairs, and a popular ceramics class. McElfresh said a modern school has the ability to change spaces to fit a program’s needs. Kirsten Barnes’ protective services class meets in what used to be a computer lab. The program covers EMT training, firefighting and police work, and cooperates with groups such as the Silverton Fire District.

Each student has their own set of gear stored in the classroom, while training takes place on a school-owned fire engine and with other professional equipment. Barnes said there simply wasn’t enough space for this type of program at the old Schlador Street campus. Though her current room was not custom-built, she said modern standards like open space and plentiful electrical outlets helped make the program possible. McElfresh said another example is the school’s alternative education class, which meets in a former staff break room. For students who need a less-crowded or less-stimulating environment, the room offers low light and noise levels, isolated learning areas and self-guided instruction. There’s also the school’s information technology program, which teaches robotics, gaming, coding and AI. To fit the new program, the school removed a foldable wall between two classrooms to create a larger space without new construction. McElfresh said these career-specific programs have helped many students find joy in what could otherwise be the drudgery of just showing up to class. He said the link between a school facility and the quality of instruction is less about four walls and a roof and more about making sure students feel welcome and involved. He said it is difficult enough to compete for a child’s attention these days, and giving them a reason to want to learn can make all the difference. “The more they can feel like they have a space here, the more they want to come,” he said. “...That’s the sort of thing you can do when you intentionally design a building in modern times.”

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10/15/23 10:20 PM

November 2023 • 11

Something to Talk About

Kennedy, Silverton HS in top 50 rankings

Oktoberfest scores high in US survey The Mt. Angel Oktoberfest can take another bow. Its 58th rendition from Sept. 14-17 not only was a clear success amid splendid weather and enthusiastic crowds, but the local celebration has sparked support in a national survey. USA Today polled U.S. residents as part of its readers’ choice ten best series and the numbers showed that the Mount Angel event, which honors the town’s German and Swiss traditions, is ranked No. 2 Oktoberfest nationwide. The Sept. 15 USA Today news release on the poll noted that Mount Angel began its Oktoberfest tradition in 1966. In addition to the classic food and beverage options, the Mount Angel event also includes music, dancing, a car show, wiener dog races, kids activities, a fun run, an Oktoberfest Olympics, and events at Mount Angel Abbey and St. Mary Catholic Church. Mount Angel organizers also note

By James Day

that the festival started with a $100 gift from the Mt. Angel Chamber of Commerce and it continues to have no paid staff, operating via volunteer board and hundreds of local recruits. Local nonprofits have received more than $3.5 million from Oktoberfest during its 58-year run.

Kennedy High and Silverton both have received lofty rankings in the annual ratings of American high schools by U.S. News & World Report. Kennedy came in at No. 26 in the rankings, while Silverton took 41st.

The only better Oktoberfest, according to the USA Today survey, was the Cleveland (Ohio) Oktoberfest. Rounding out the top five were the Reading Liederkranz Oktoberfest in Reading, Pennsylvania; the Tulsa Oktoberfest in Tulsa, Oklahoma; and the New Ulm Oktoberfest in New Ulm, Minnesota. The Mount Angel event was the only Pacific Northwest festival in the top 10. A Big Bear Lake, California, event ranked 8th and one in Snowbird, Utah was 10th.

The U.S. News high school rankings include data on nearly 25,000 public high schools in 50 states and the District of Columbia. Nearly 18,000 schools were ranked on six factors based on their performance on state assessments and how well they prepare students for college. The six factors that U.S. News emphasized were college readiness, state assessment proficiency, state assessment performance, underserved student performance, college curriculum breadth and graduation rates.

JFK. We need to always celebrate such successes, but their data and reports don’t necessarily include everything.” “JFK is a great high school because we are performing at a high level in so many ways,” Stucky said. “It makes my heart sing.” Silverton also rated high in both state assessment proficiency and state performance, according to the U.S. News data, with the graduation rate of 93% also a positive factor. “We’re thrilled about the new school year and the 41st ranking for Silverton High School from US News and World Report,” Superintendent Scott Drue said. “While the ranking is encouraging, what really matters are the daily accomplishments in our classrooms and community. We take this as a nod to our ongoing efforts and a reminder that there’s always room for growth.”

Everything You Need, For Anything Yo Kennedy rated high in both state assessment proficiency and state performance, according to the US News data.

The top Oregon school on the list was the International School of Beaverton, which also earned the No. 14 spot nationally. Private schools are not included in the ranking.


The 2024 Mt. Angel Oktoberfest runs Thursday through Sunday, Sept. 12-15.

Mt. Angel Superintendent Rachel Stucky told Our Town that she is “really excited that U.S. News is highlighting

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12 • November 2023



Broadening the mind

STEM Europe 2025 tour open for registration

By Melissa Wagoner

And the educational experiences – in this case ones that are specifically STEM-based such as a hands-on forensics lab activity followed by a Jack the Ripper tour, an interactive engineering challenge centered on Stonehenge and a code-breaking workshop exploring Bletchley Park’s role in ending World War II – are invaluable.

Travel isn’t just about going somewhere new. It can also be a way of learning about science, technology, engineering and mathematics – commonly referred to as STEM – in an entirely new way. “I want students to have the opportunity to engage in hands-on interactive STEM activities at significant locations around the world, where they learn first-hand about topics we can only talk about in the classroom,” Butte Creek Elementary School’s middle school science instructor Stacie Harker said. She has recently begun partnering with the educational tour company, EF Tours, first traveling with students to Belize and now in planning a trip to England and France.

“I am so excited about this STEM tour to England and France,” Harker enthused. “It is a perfect blend of handson STEM activities and traditional touring…” Because, while students will spend much of their time focused on education, they will also explore famous sites like Buckingham Palace, the Eiffel Tower and the London Eye, take a boat cruise on the Thames River, enjoy a theater performance, and ride the Eurostar train under the English Channel.

“In STEM tours, students meet with scientists and learn about innovations in the world today in an authentic way.” It’s a lesson Harker herself learned when she began traveling in college, initially spending two summers in Ecuador, then a semester in Australia. “I gained so much from these experiences that I want to give back and provide similar opportunities for students today,” Harker explained. “Exploring other cultures expands my worldview, helps me understand and honor others for our differences as well as our similarities, and provides me with insight into my own values. I am positive any student traveling abroad will experience personal growth, and perhaps some may even become inspired to pursue a STEM career!” Taking place June 22 through July 2, 2025, Harker’s upcoming trip will offer students – aged 14 through 19 at the time of travel – an opportunity to explore areas in and around London and Paris in a way that would not be possible without the help of an experienced guide.

Above: Tour educator Stacie Harker (center), and the 2022 EF Travel trip to Belize. Right: Harker’s previous trip to the Incan ruins of Ecuador. SUBMITTED PHOTOS

“These educational guided tours offer so much more…” Harker said. “I love hearing the story of a place when I visit it – I learn so much and my experience is more meaningful. Also, having a local guide helps us with the logistics of each location – what to do and what not to do while navigating another country, whether this means where to withdraw money, where to eat, or where the best markets to find souvenirs are. EF also has offices worldwide that will assist our group if there are any events that occur that may cause a change in our itinerary. I travel with peace of mind knowing we have that level of support for our group.”

While a trip of this caliber isn’t cheap – the current price is estimated at $5,519 – it does cover most costs and fundraising, scholarship and payment options are available. “Students can apply for $1,000 merit or needsbased scholarships through EF,” Harker said. “They will also be provided with their own fundraising page. In addition, I will also be offering fundraising opportunities for them if they choose to participate. This tour is planned for summer of 2025, so we have plenty of time to save and make the payments more affordable.” For more information or to register visit www.eftours.com/2690621CW.

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November 2023 • 13

datebook Frequent Addresses

Mt. Angel Public Library, 290 E Charles St. Silver Creek Fellowship, 822 NE Industrial Way, Silverton. Silver Falls Library, 410 S Water St. Silverton Arts Association, 303 Coolidge St. Silverton Community Center/Council Chambers, 421 S Water St.

Weekly Events Monday

Silverton Senior Center. Seniors 50 and older. Daily, weekly, monthly events. 503873-3093, silvertonseniorcenter.org Low Impact Aerobics, 9:30 a.m., Silverton Senior Center. Members free. Nonmembers $5. Repeats Wednesday, Friday. SACA Food Pantry, 11 a.m. - 2 p.m., SACA, 421 S Water St., Silverton. Repeats 4 - 7 p.m. Tuesdays, 9 a.m. - noon Thursdays. 503-873-3446, silvertonareacommunityaid.org Mt. Angel Community & Senior Center Store, 11 a.m. - 3 p.m., 195 E Charles St. Repeats Tuesday - Saturday. Volunteers needed. 503-845-6998 Silverton Meals on Wheels, 11:30 a.m., Silverton Senior Center. Congregate and drive-up dining. $3 donation suggested. Mon - Fri. RSVP to Carol, 503-873-6906. Silverton Recovery AA, noon - 1 p.m., 302 N Water St. Seven days a week. Free Monday Dinner, 5:30 - 7 p.m., Oak Street Church, 502 Oak St., Silverton. Indoor, sit-down dinner. To-go meals also available. All are welcome. Free. 503-8735446, oakstchurch@gmail.com Boy Scouts Troop 485, 7 - 8:30 p.m., St. Edward’s Catholic Church, 211 W Center St., Silverton. Scoutmaster Dave Tacker, 760-644-3147, dave.tacker@gmail.com


Scotts Mills Food Boxes, 9 - 11 a.m., Scotts Mills Community Center, 298 Fourth St. Residents in Scotts Mills/Butte Creek/Monitor rural areas are welcome. Donations welcome. Niki, 503-873-5059 Gentle Yoga, 9:30 a.m., Silverton Senior Center. Donations accepted. Repeats Thursdays. Simple Qigong, 9:45 a.m., Silverton Senior Center. Set to music. $8. Repeats Thursdays. Mt. Angel Senior Meals, 10:30 - 11 a.m. Delivery only. $3 donation suggested. Repeats Thursdays. Ginger, 503-845-9464. APPY Hour, noon - 1 p.m., Mt. Angel Public Library. Drop in for technical assistance for electronic devices. All ages. Free. 971-370-5040 Silverton Mainstay, 1 - 4 p.m., Silverton United Methodist Church, 203 W Main St. Community space and activities for adults with intellectual and developmental disabilities. Repeats Thursdays. 971-208-7952, silvertonmainstay.org

14 • November 2023

Stories & STEAM, 4 p.m., Mt. Angel Public Library. Listen to a story, join in a project. Snacks. Ages 5-12. Free. 971-370-5040 Serenity Al-Anon, 5:30 p.m. Zoom. Repeats 10 a.m. Saturdays. For Zoom link, call Barbara K, 503-269-0952. Cub Scout Pack 485, 6:30 p.m., St. Edward’s Catholic Church, 211 W Center St., Silverton. Boys and girls in K - fifth grade. Deb, 971-337-5925, silvertonpack485@gmail.com Growing Awareness, Nurturing Compassion, 7 - 8:30 p.m. Zoom. Secular presentation promoting mindfulness. No experience needed. Invitation for virtual gathering: compassionatepresence@yahoo. com. 971-218-6641


Silverton Business Group, 8 a.m., Silver Falls Brewery, 207 Jersey St., Silverton. Networking meeting of the Silverton business community hosted by Silverton Chamber of Commerce. silvertonchamber.org Quilters Group, 9 a.m. - noon, Trinity Lutheran Church, 500 N Second Ave., Silverton. trinitysilverton@gmail.com Family Storytime, 10:30 a.m., Mt. Angel Public Library. Singing, stories, crafts. Age 2-5 with family members. Free. 971-370-5040 Indoor Playtime, 11 a.m. - noon, Mt. Angel Public Library. Play with toys, spend time with friends. Free. 971-370-5040 Mission Benedict Food Pantry, 1 - 4 p.m., St. Joseph Shelter, 925 S Main St., Mt. Angel. Repeats Friday. 503-845-2468 Line Dancing - Intermediate, 12:30 - 2 p.m., Silver Creek Fellowship. No registration required. Free; donations accepted for instructor. Open to all. Sheila, 503-409-4498 Silver Chips Woodcarving Sessions, 1 - 3 p.m., Silverton Arts Association. All skill levels. 503-873-4512. Mission of Hope Food Pantry, 2 - 4 p.m., Silver Creek Fellowship. 503-873-7353 Ukes for Youth, 3 p.m., Mt. Angel Public Library. Learn to play the Ukulele. Borrow one of the library’s or bring your own. Pre-registration required if using a library instrument. All skills levels. Ages 8-13. 971-370-5040


Community Coffee, 7 - 9 a.m., Scotts Mills Community Center, 298 Fourth St. Free. Yoga, 9 a.m., Silver Creek Fellowship. Open to all. Sheila, 503-409-4498 Simple Qigong, 9:45 a.m., Silverton Senior Center. $8. Open Art Studio, 10 a.m. - 1 p.m., Silverton Arts Association. 503-873-2480 Bingo, 2 p.m., Silverton Senior Center. $1/ card or $2/three cards. TOPS (Take Pounds Off Sensibly), 6 p.m., United Methodist Church, 203 W Main St., Silverton. Weight loss with support, encouragement. First meeting free. Monthly dues $4. All welcome. David, 503-501-9824


Toastmaster Club, 7:30 a.m., Zoom. Increase speaking, listening skills, thinking, evaluating. Contact tmcommunicators@ gmail.com for Zoom link. Silvertones Community Singers, 10:30 a.m., Silverton United Methodist Church, 203 Main St. All welcome. 503-873-2033 Ukulele Song Circle, 1 p.m., Silverton Senior Center.


Open Art Studio, 9 a.m., Silverton Arts Association. 503-873-2480 Ageless Yoga, 9:30 - 11 a.m., Silverton Senior Center. Geared toward those 50 and older, but all are welcome. After-Season Indoor Market, 10 a.m. 12:30 p.m., Silverton Friends Church, 229 Eureka Ave. Local produce, eggs, meats, artisan crafts. silvertonfarmersmarket.com Creciendo juntos/Growing Together Storytime, 1 p.m., Mt. Angel Public Library. ¡Atrévete a acompañarnos aprender juntos! ¡Atreves de leyendo libros bilingües podríamos hacer lo! Después abrirá una actividad para la familia. Through bilingual books and activities, learn simple words and phrases that help us communicate and grow together. 971-370-5040 Silverton Country History Museum, 1 - 4 p.m., 428 S Water St. Free admission. Repeats Sundays. 503-873-7070, silverton. museum@live.com Peaceful Heart Meditation, 2 - 3 p.m., Silverton Community Center. Yoga breathing, kirtan and yoga philosophy. No experience required. Everyone welcome. Free. peacefulheartkirtan@gmail.com

Wednesday, Nov. 1 Thanksgiving Card Making

1 p.m., Mt. Angel Public Library. Create handmade Thanksgiving cards using rubber stamps and decorative paper. Adults only. 971-370-5040

Caregiver Connection

Friends of Silver Falls Library

6 p.m., Silver Falls Library. Board meeting. Open to public. 503-873-5173

Scotts Mills City Council

7 p.m., Scotts Mills City Hall, 265 Fourth St. Open to public. 503-873-5435

Thursday, Nov. 2 Painting with Christine

11 a.m., Silverton Senior Center. $5/ members. $10/non-members. Repeats Nov. 16. 503-873-3093

Silverton Kiwanis Club

Noon, Main St. Bistro, 201 E Main St., Silverton. Bi-monthly meeting of Silverton Kiwanis Club. New members welcome. Repeats Nov. 16. silvertonkiwanis.org

Google Chrome

1 p.m., Mt. Angel Public Library. Learn to personalize Google Chrome with the Web Store and enhance web browsing experience. Space is limited; registration is required by calling 971-370-5040.

Critique Night

7 - 8:30 p.m., Silverton Arts Association. Bring your latest work for discussion and critique amongst other artists in the community. 503-873-2480, silvertonarts.org

Friday, Nov. 3 Lego Lab

3 - 4:30 p.m., Mt. Angel Public Library. Build a Lego creation to display in the library. All ages. Free. Repeats Nov. 10. 971-370-5040

First Friday in Silverton

7 – 9 p.m. Explore historic downtown, have dinner, shop, browse galleries, boutiques. 503-873-5615, silvertonchamber.org

Lunaria Opening Reception

7 - 9 p.m., Lunaria Gallery, 113 N Water St., Silverton. Opening reception for November’s showings. Main Floor Gallery is ”Rhythmical Color,” paintings and drawings by Diane Trevett. Loft Gallery features Alluscion Æ and Josh W. Kinsey. Shows open 11 a.m. - 5 p.m. daily through Nov. 27. 503-873-7734

1 - 2 p.m., Zoom. Free educational support group for unpaid family caregivers caring for a loved one 60 years of age or older, or caring for a person living with dementia. For Zoom invite, call 503-304-3432.

Saturday, Nov. 4

4 - 8 p.m., Immanuel Lutheran Church, 303 N Church St., Silverton. Sign ups for Silverton Zenith Women’s Club Tree of Giving. Children living in Silverton/Scotts Mill area or are students in the Silver Falls School District and have financial need are eligible. Info: Becky, 971-600-4713. Tax-deductible donations can be mailed to Silverton Zenith Women’s Club, PO Box 1273, Silverton, OR 97381. Repeats 6 - 8 p.m. Nov. 2 & 8, 10 a.m. - noon Nov. 3 & 6, 4 - 6 p.m. Nov. 7.

Daylight Savings Time Ends

Tree of Giving Registration


Free Community Breakfast

8 - 11 a.m., Silverton Senior Center. Come enjoy a free breakfast. Donations welcome. 503-873-3093

Sunday, Nov. 5

Remember to turn your clocks 1 hour back.

Pie Contest & Auction

2 - 4 p.m., Silverton Grange, 201 NE Division St. Bake, taste, buy a pie. Enter at silvertongrange.org. Hosted by Silverton Grange, Silverton Food Co-op. 503-874-9956

African Children’s Choir

7 p.m., Silverton High, 1456 Pine St. Hymns with African cultural sounds. Free. Open to public. Presented by Silver Creek Fellowship. 503-873-7353


Monday, Nov. 6 Silverton City Council

7 p.m., Silverton Council Chambers. Open to public. 503-873-5321, silverton.or.us

Mt. Angel City Council

7 p.m., Mount Angel Public Library. Open to public. 503-845-9291, ci.mt-angel.or.us

Tuesday, Nov. 7 Drawing Group

6 - 7:30 p.m., Silverton Arts Association. Bring your own materials or some of the associations. Everyone is welcome. Repeats Nov. 21. 503-873-2480, silvertonarts.org

Holiday Happiness Bazaar

10 a.m.- 3 p.m., Silverton Grange, 201 NE Division St. Selection of handmade and homemade gifts from local artisans, bakers, crafters and makers. Repeats Nov. 12. rgembree@gmal.com, 971-267-9364

Veteran’s Day Dinner

6 p.m., Silverton Elks Lodge, 300 High St. Menu includes pork roast, au gratin potatoes, glazed carrots, salad, dessert. $15. Veterans eat free. Pre-orders required by Nov. 8 by calling 503-873-4567

Monday, Nov. 13

Parks & Rec Advisory Committee

Silverton Tourism Committee

Mt. Angel American Legion

Mt. Angel School District

6:30 p.m., Silverton Council Chambers. Silverton Parks & Rec Master Plan Project Advisory Committee. Open to public. 503-873-5321, silverton.or.us

6 p.m., Silverton Council Chambers. Tourism Promotion Committee meets. Open to public. 503-873-5321, silverton.or.us

6:30 p.m., Legion Hall, 740 E College St., Mt. Angel. All veterans welcome. Masks optional. Jim, 503-845-6119

6:30 p.m., District Office, 730 E Marquam St., Mt. Angel. Agenda available. Open to public. 503-845-2345, masd91.org

Wednesday, Nov. 8 Silverton Senior Center Board

1 p.m., Silverton Senior Center. Open to public. 503-873-3093

Thursday, Nov. 9 Book Pumpkin

1 p.m., Mt. Angel Public Library. Create a decorative pumpkin out of an old book. Adults only. Free. 971-370-5040

National 4H STEM Night

5:30 p.m., Mt. Angel Public Library. Participants complete three STEM challenges. Optional pizza dinner begins at 5 p.m. Grades 6-8. Register at 971-370-5040.

Zenith Women’s Club

7 p.m., Silver Creek Fellowship. Women discuss ways to fund, implement projects benefiting Silverton community. Anyone interested is welcome. Social begins at 6:30 p.m. Barbara, 801-414-3875

Friday, Nov. 10 Teen Hangout

4:30 - 7:30 p.m., Mt. Angel Public Library. Play an escape room board game. Ages 12-18. Pizza, water provided. Free. 971-370-5040

The Next Friday

5 - 8 p.m., Mt. Angel. Businesses in Mt. Angel stay open with extra vendors, goodies, information, sales and more. discovermtangel@gmail.com

All-Ages Game Night

6 - 9 p.m., Silverton Grange, 201 Division St. Bring your favorite games. Children under 13 must be accompanied by responsible adult. All ages. Free admission. 971-267-9364

Saturday, Nov. 11 Veterans Day Red Cross Blood Drive

9 a.m. - 2 p.m., Safeway, 301 Westfield St., Silverton. Appt.: redcrossblood.org.


Silver Falls School District

7 p.m., Silverton High, 1456 Pine St. Agenda available. Open to public. 503-873-5303, silverfallsschools.org

Tuesday, Nov. 14 Ancestry Detectives

10 a.m. - noon, Silverton Senior Center. Randol B. Fletcher presents “The Hidden History of Civil War in Oregon.” adsteering@ancestrydetectives.org.

Ukulele Play and Sing-Alongs

6 - 7:30 p.m., Silver Falls Library. First 30 minutes is beginner’s ukulele lesson followed by play and sing-along time for all skill levels. Everyone is welcome. Children must be accompanied by an adult. Music provided. Bring ukulele. Free. 503-873-8796

Silverton Planning Commission

7 p.m., Silverton Council Chambers. Open to public. Agenda available. 503-874-2207, silverton.us.or

Wednesday, Nov. 15 Lunch & Learn

11:30 a.m., Main Street Bistro, 201 E Main St., Silverton. Business professionals connect with fellow business professionals. There is no fee to attend; lunch is off the menu on your own. RSVP is encouraged to save a seat. Replaces regular Wednesday Business Group meeting. Sponsored by Silverton Chamber of Commerce. 503-873-5615

Thursday, Nov. 16

Monday, Nov. 20

1 p.m., Silverton Senior Center. Silverton-Mt. Angel Women’s Connection luncheon. $10. RSVP required. 503-873-3093

6 p.m., Silverton Council Chambers. Open to public. 503-873-5321, silverton.or.us

Women’s Connection Luncheon

Silver Falls Book Club

6:30 p.m., Silver Falls Library. Discuss Remarkably Bright Creatures by Shelby Van Pelt. All welcome. Free. 503-873-8796

1 p.m., Mt. Angel Public Library. Discuss The Last Mona Lisa by Jonathan Santlofer. 971-370-5040

Silver Falls Writers Group

6:30 p.m., Silver Falls Library. Writers share what they are working on and listen to what others are doing. Ron Drake, 503-873-8796.

Mt. Angel Planning Commission

7 p.m, Mt. Angel Public Library. Open to public. 503-873-5321, silverton.or.us

Affordable Housing Task Force

6:30 p.m., Silverton Council Chambers. Open to public. 503873-5321, silverton.or.us

Wednesday, Nov. 22 A Charlie Brown Thanksgiving

Friday, Nov. 17

1:30 p.m., Mt. Angel Public Library. Watch the TV classic. Enjoy a feast with the characters. All ages. Free. 971-370-5040

Noon - 5 p.m., Silverton Elks Lodge, 300 High St. Appt.: redcrossblood.org.

Thursday, Nov. 23 Thanksgiving Day

Red Cross Blood Drive Family Movie Night

4:30 p.m., Mt. Angel Public Library. Watch Ruby Gillman: Teenage Kraken (PG). Free hot buttered popcorn. All ages. Free. 971-370-5040

Silverton Christmas Market

5 - 9 p.m., Oregon Garden Resort, 895 W Main St., Silverton. Explore authentic German Christmas Market for gifts from artisan vendors. Visits with Santa, live music, wood-burning fire pit, snowless tubing hill, Biergarten. All admission and snowless tubing tickets must be purchased online in advance. Vendors are cashless; bring a debit or credit card for purchases. Tickets available at silvertonchristmasmarket.com. Runs through Dec. 31. Closed Nov. 22-23, Dec. 24-25.

Magic of Lights

5:30 - 9 p.m., Oregon State Fairgrounds, 2330 NE 17th St., Salem. Drive-through holiday lights experience. Repeats 5:30 9 p.m. Monday - Thursday and 5:30 - 10 p.m. Friday - Sunday through Dec. 31. Buy tickets online for $17 per standard vehicle. magicoflights.com/events/ oregon-state-fair

Saturday, Nov. 18 Scotts Mills Holiday Bazaar

6 p.m., Silverton Council Chambers. Open to public. 503-874-2207, silverton.us.or 6:30 p.m., Mt. Angel Public Library. Advise, recommend, advocate for the library. Any interested community member welcome. 971-370-5040

5:30 - 9 p.m., Festhalle, 500 NE Wilco Hwy., Mt. Angel. Fall gala, students showcase, dinner and fundraiser. Tickets $50, available at chestertonwv.com.

Mt. Angel Library Advisory Board

Tuesday, Nov. 21

Book Discussion for Adults

9 a.m. - 5 p.m., Scotts Mill Grange, 299 Fourth St. Crafts, baked goods, jewelry, home decor and more. Free admission.

Homeless and Housing Task Force

Silverton City Council Work Session

Chesterton Academy Gala


Turkey Trot

8:30 a.m., Robert Frost Elementary, 201 Westfield St., Silverton. This year features a junior course for younger runners. Costumes are encouraged. $20/individuals, $60/families. All proceeds benefit Robert Frost PTC. Signup at runsignup.com/race/ or/silverton/silvertonturkeytrot or the day of the race.

Free Thanksgiving Dinner

1 - 3 p.m., Immanuel Lutheran Church, 303 N Church St., Silverton. Open to all, Sponsored by Elizabeth Hoke Memorial Trust.

Monday, Nov. 27 Vigil for Peace

2:30 - 3:30 p.m., Towne Square Park, Silverton. Silverton People for Peace gather to advocate for peace, social justice issues. Open to all. 503-873-5307

Tuesday, Nov. 28

Silverton Planning Work Session

6:30 p.m., Silverton Council Chamber. Open to public. 503-873-5321, silverton.or.us

Thursday, Nov. 30 Teen Advisory Board/Book Club

4:30 p.m., Mt. Angel Public Library. Teens help collaborate with the library on programs, collections, games and more. Pizza provided. Book Club meets for the first 30 minutes. 971-370-5040

Writers Group

6 p.m., Mt. Angel Public Library. Gather and chat with fellow writers. Bring up to three pages of work to read and get feedback on. Get tips on publishing or performing your work. Treats available. Free. Teens & adults. 971-370-5040

November 2023 • 15



24-486 a bond that will:

•Replace SilvertonMiddle School • Bring needed repairs & upgrades to all schools in the Silver Falls School District Janet Allanach

Ken & Darby Hector

Kate Altieri

Briana Hupp

Karen Bain

Jonah Jensen

Jen Basile

Cindy Jones

Nathan Bay, MD

Aaron & Jennipher Koch

Katie Beckett Laura & Marshall Beville Dixon & Lisa Bledsoe Brian & Mandi Bolduc Laure Bordelon

Christiane & Tom Kraemer Corey & Layne Larned Laurie Chadwick & Lee Mercer

Julie Broyhill, MD

Sheldon & Rachel Lesire

Kimberly Brueckner

Carson & Colette Lord

Eliza Torlyn & Bryan Heath Tom & Barb Buchholz Corey Christensen Tricia Craig Elizabeth Craig Sarah & Heath Curtiss Eric & Sarah Dalisky Christine & Andy Diacetis

Becky Ludden Brooke McCollum Mac McCollum Ryan McGraw Todd & Lisa Meyer Nancy Miller AmyMarie Miller Jess Miller Patrick Mulligan

Karyssa & Jason Dow

Susannah Musillami

Hilary & Val Dumitrescu

April Newton

Emily & Elijah Neves

Jonathan Edmonds

Ashley Obersinner

Jean Edwards

Josh & Danyelle Ort

Anita & Mark Endresen

Kevin & Rebecca Ortega

Sahaji Fisher

Anna Ottosen

Chip & Lee Fitzpatrick

Kevin & Stacy Palmer

Derrick Foxworth

Kyle & Julie Palmer

Gus Frederick

Kate & John Pattison

Matt Gaitan

Brian & Sarah Reif

Ron & Karen Garst

Celeste & Tim Richardson

Jake & Jen Gerig John Gilliam, MD Michael Grady, MD

Leslie Roache Sue Roessler Craig Roessler

Dan & Annie Schacher

Kathleen Southwick

Amy Vohs

Phil Wiesner

Andy & Liz Schaecher

Amanda Spencer

Owen Von Flue

Zakary Williams

Alta & Will Schafer

Alison & Mitch Stolfus

Jason & Melissa Wagoner

Cindy Zapata Silver Falls Education Association

Ashley & Patrick Graves

Ali & Todd Ross

Chuck Sheketoff

Leslie Tegen

Sarah Walling

Eric Hammond

Jesse & Leah Rue

McKenna Shorey

Jennifer Traeger

Sarah Weitzman

Chuck & Mikee Hawley

Brent & Kelly Satern

Elizabeth Smith, MD

Whitney & Mike Ulven

Ashley & Matt West

16 • November 2023


Silverton Fire District Board of Directors



Something to Think About

Mt. Angel Fire District on a drill. SUBMITTED PHOTO

The line of defense By Melissa Wagoner When Robert Gendhar graduated from high school in Hubbard, he thought he knew what he wanted to do with his life. “I wanted to be an agronomist,” he laughed. But then a few of his friends who volunteered at the local fire district convinced him to come to a meeting. “I enjoyed the atmosphere,” Gendhar remembered, “and the unknown of what your days are going to be like. I like the problem solving.” But most of all Gendhar – who eventually transferred to Mt. Angel Fire District before becoming a full-time employee in 2021 – likes knowing that he’s giving back to his community. “It’s one of the most rewarding things you can do,” he said. But it’s not easy. The training alone requires a minimum of 120 hours to fight fires, with an additional 60 hours tacked on to attend medical calls. And, when it’s all said and done the volunteers – accounting for approximately 70 to


Rural fire districts need more volunteers

90 percent of most rural fire district’s personnel – don’t get paid. “There’s just not a lot of glory,” Jack Carriger, Chief of the Gates Rural Fire Protection District, confirmed. “But it’s about wanting to help your neighbor.” A volunteer with the Marion County Fire District for ten years before becoming the Chief in Stayton for the next 20, Carriger has seen his fair share of volunteers come and go and knows first-hand the challenges each of the rural fire districts is facing – but in particular he knows how difficult it has been for Gates where the number of recruits has continued to fall since the Santaim Canyon fire in 2020. “They’re an amazing group,” he said, referring to the district’s 10 current volunteers, “but we’re challenged, and we’ll have more of a challenge in the next couple of years because our members are getting older.” Also experiencing difficulties, the IdanhaDetroit Fire District recently faced “an almost 100 percent turnover of volunteers

due to leadership issues from the top down,” according to Lieutenant Laura Harris. She added that thanks to the hiring of a Chief Fred Patterson and the appointment of a new board of directors, those numbers are finally going up. “We’re doing a lot of rebranding and re-structuring,” she said, “and I for one am very hopeful for this ‘new’ fire district and its future. We’ve seen a steady increase in volunteers over the past year and a half. In the first quarter of 2022, we had a total of six volunteers. Now we have 18 on our roster. I believe it has a lot to do with good leadership.” But good leadership doesn’t necessarily mean higher recruitment numbers, not when the number one reason potential volunteers turn down the job is a lack of time.

average person spends away from home. “I think society has changed,” Gendhar said. “Over the last 20 years we’ve transitioned into a bedroom community and when people get home, the last thing they want to do is have a second job.” It’s made recruitment a real challenge. “There are many reasons for the drop…” Brian Harris, the Recruiting and Retention Coordinator for the Stayton Fire District agreed. “Some examples include family commitments and increased career commitments. The financial situation we are currently experiencing is making it harder to provide for families.” But he and Gendhar believe these challenges can be overcome.

“And it does take time away from your personal life,” Gendhar agreed.

“Every volunteer has a job and a family,” Gendhar said simply. “So, talking to the volunteers… it can help.”

But that doesn’t fully account for why volunteer numbers are dropping. The time required to become a volunteer hasn’t changed. What has changed is the time the

In fact, taking a tour of the station and meeting with current volunteers are two of the best ways to find out what volunteering at a fire station really entails.


November 2023 • 17

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Now That’s a Great Question!


ell, this is my 9th article in Our Town. They have been very well received. I get lots of encouragement to keep on writing. But some folks have also asked a few questions about some pretty important issues. So, I thought it might be helpful to respond to those questions here.

Do you think the Christian life is better than any other way of life? Yes. Biblical, evangelical, Bible-believing, born-again Christianity is the only truly good and wise way to live in this fallen world. I’m not says this. This is what God is saying.

Do You Hate People in the LGTBQ+ Community? No. Some people wrongly assume that as a Christian I have to hate homosexuals. But as a Christian I am commanded by God to love ALL my neighbors as myself (Rom. 13:9). And by His grace He has given me the desire to do so, no matter who they are. So, no, I don’t hate anyone. That is the truth. But this question does raise an important point that may surprise you. Everyone on the LGBTQ+ flag has been made in the same image of the very same Creator God as everyone else. Like it or not, we are all brothers and sisters by creation. Therefore we are all worthy of the same neighborly love and respect from one another. But we also bear the same moral obligation to do only what God has defined to be right and good in every area of our lives. That is how we live for His glory, by doing everything His way. The sad truth is that we have all failed to do so, whether it be by our sexual sins, or by any of the other ways we defy His righteous will. We may lie, steal, murder, or dishonor our parents, but the result is still the same. We have all “sinned and fallen short of the glory of God” (see Rom. 3:23). But in spite of our sins, God intends to save all those who put their faith in Jesus Christ (John 3:16-21). That already includes some of the folks represented on the LGBTQ+ flag (see 1 Cor. 6:9-11). God has shown His love for the world by sending His one and only Son, Jesus, to die for our sins. The same Jesus that has saved me from my sins stands ready to save anyone who comes to Him. All we have to do is repent (i.e. turn away from our sins), and believe in Jesus to save us. But how can we know that this is true? When God raised Jesus from the dead after three days in a tomb, He proved that everything Jesus said is true. He is who He said He was. His death was accepted by God the Father as sufficient payment for all our debts to God. That is why we are ALL welcome to come back to God. All we have to do is accept His gift of forgiveness and acknowledge Him as our Lord (i.e. our Master). No one is excluded from this offer. No one who comes to Jesus will be rejected. All are just as welcome as anyone else to become a fellow brother or sister in Christ. So, that is not the problem. However, there is a problem.

18 • November 2023

By Gregg Harris

Gregg Harris, “A sp

iring to Be a Bib

le Answer Man”

The Problem Is, We Hate God!

In Prov. 8:36 God says, “All those who hate me love death.” Look around you at the culture of death that has taken hold of so many lives. Many t-shirts, tattoos, and video games are adorned with human skulls, often wrapped about with snakes. They shout “I love death!” Ahh, but you say, “It’s just a shirt!” “It’s just a tattoo!” “It’s just a game!” Okay. But why do you love it? The death cult in modern society is shaking its fist at God. You may think I am a prude, but I’ve been where those folks are. I was rescued from Marxism in the Youth International Party. I was a Yippie with the morals of an ally cat. I did it all in the 60s. But Jesus saved me.

Now, you may be thinking, “I don’t hate God. I don’t even believe in the God of the Bible.” But according to the Bible, everyone believes in God. “So, the root problem in most of our We just don’t want Him to exist. In our hearts we all lives is that we are running away from know God is there. We all the God who created us. The only see the beauty of His solution is to stop running. Turn back to creation and we can God. Listen to what He is saying: hardly hold back our “Repent and believe the gospel.” worship. But we do hold it That’s the good news.” back (See Rom. 1:18-24). We refuse to be thankful. Why? Because if we were The Christian life does not destroy what is to acknowledge God exists, our rebellion truly good and wise and beautiful in human against Him would have to stop. We would culture. Jesus came only to destroy the works have to repent. of the devil — all the lies and corruption. So, yes, I believe the biblical Christian life is the So, most people suppress their knowledge of only truly good and wise way to live. God in a life of sin, which is a slow-motion way of dying. We dive deeper into rebellion. It Are You a “White Supremacist?” starts with our pride. We think we know better than God. We reject His law. We do stupid No, I am not. My first wife, Sono, who passed things. We do alcohol, then drugs. We don’t away in 2010, was a 2nd generation, want to wait until we are married to have sex. American-born, Japanese. She was far We start with porn, which may ruin our ability superior to any white guy I’ve ever met. to enjoy real sex. We love money. We lie. We But all kidding aside, God created only one lust. We cheat on our marriage. Our marriage race, and that is the Human Race. Adam and dies. We keep our act together, at least for a Eve were our first parents. Our genetics bear while, for the sake of our career or our kids, this out. But we are also all descended from but eventually we lose our grip. We may hit Noah and his family after the world-wide flood bottom. We may end up living alone. Or on (see Gen. 7-10). All ethnic groups proceed the streets, kicked out by family, shunned by from the same stock. Skin color does not friends, homeless, addicted, and suicidal. affect our abilities as human beings, but living This slow disaster is how God, in His under the burden of racial discrimination can. goodness, brings us to repentance before it is Neighborhoods matter. A long series of too late. Unless we do believe, repent and foolish decisions will bear bad results no trust in Jesus, we will all face God’s eternal matter what color your skin may be. So, judgment after we die. So, the root problem in equal opportunity to make a long series of most of our lives is that we are running away wise decisions is the only real solution. And from the God who created us. The only when Jesus Christ is your Lord and Savior, solution is to stop running. Turn back to God. you get the benefit of having the best “Life Listen to what He is saying: “Repent and Coach” you could ever imagine. Letting Jesus believe the gospel.” That’s the good news. run your life is the smartest thing you can do.


Are You a “Christian Nationalist?” If by Christian Nationalist you mean one who wants to discriminate by law against those who are not Christians, the answer is a resounding “No!” But if by that you mean one who would like to see others come to know God through Jesus Christ, and then exercise their God-given rights as citizens under our Constitution to influence law and public policy in ways that honor God’s will, then, “Yes,” I would like every nation on earth to enjoy being such a free, good, and wise nation.

What about “Women’s Rights?” I’m for ‘em. The two sexes are equal in value but quite different by God’s design. The two sexes are complementary to one another, like a nut and a bolt. Equality does not require men and women to be the same. Be different. Why not use your rights to do what is right? However, a woman’s choice to abort her baby should be against the law. I am pro-life because God requires all human life to be protected by law from conception to natural death. An unwanted baby should never be murdered any more than an unwanted neighbor. God says those who dishonor His image in their fellow human being by acts of murder should be put to death (Gen. 9:6). Protecting a baby’s life in its mother’s womb is no different than protecting any other life. Having said that, the Bible is also clear that we have a responsibility to care for the needy. Women who bear their children are heroes who deserve the support of their families, churches and their communities. If we truly love the baby, we must also love its mother.

Why do you spend so much money to publish these articles? I do this because I care about you. I want to spend eternity with you as part of God’s family in heaven. You are well worth the investment. Thankfully, I no longer have to bear this expense all by myself. A growing team now supports me in buying a full page of advertising space each month. If you would like to join my team, please do so. Call or text 503-926-1388. Let’s do this together.

Men’s Prayer Breakfast!

Every Thurs. morning 5:30-7:00 AM at 409 South Water Street, Silverton Join us as we briefly study the Bible, pray for our city, challenge one another to grow in our faith & enjoy a free breakfast. Please RSVP by text to 503-926-1388.

Go to NobleInn.org/articles to read all 9 of my Our Town articles.


Something to Think About

Silverton Fire District

www.silvertonfire.com “Proudly serving since 1883.”

Mt. Angel Fire District

www.mtangelfire.org “Protect lives, property, and the environment through emergency safety services.”

Stayton Fire District

www.staytonfire.org “Volunteer service with pride.”

Sublimity Rural Fire Protection District

www.sublimityfire.com “Volunteers proudly serving our community since 1912.”

Idanha-Detroit Rural Fire Protection District www.idanhadetroitfire.com “To be a point of pride to the communities we serve.”

Gates Fire District

Information on Facebook or at Gates.Fire.District.97346@gmail.com “Help us help our community.” Mt. Angel Fire District volunteers at work. SUBMITTED PHOTO

Continued from page 17 “There are more ways to serve as a volunteer in our district than being a firefighter or EMS provider,” Stayton’s Harris said. “We have an amazing support team. It’s made up of a diverse group of individuals who help in many unique ways. Some examples are serving food and drinks at our rehabilitation staging area during large fires, helping out at special events and fundraisers, using photography and drone skills for media projects, administrative assistance and helping with emergency vehicle and building maintenance… have a specific skillset and want to volunteer? Join our team.” “There really is a spot for almost everybody,” Silverton Fire District’s Assistant Training Officer and Volunteer Coordinator, Daniel Brown, echoed. But there is one caveat – every person who volunteers must be a team player. “It’s absolutely required,” Brown said. “Because every single aspect is a team effort.”


Which is perhaps why, without fail, those speaking on behalf of the fire districts referred to their coworkers as family. “Everybody’s welcome,” Silverton Fire Lt. Keith Veit said. “We get people sitting at this table that are polar opposites – and there are very few places that can happen. But people come together regardless of every factor. As long as they want to support the mission, they’re welcome here.” It has a lot to do with trust, a factor Veit said is implicit to the job, which requires responders to assist people often on their very worst day. “There’s not a person in this organization I wouldn’t trust,” he said unhesitatingly. “And I’d like to feel they think the same about me.” It’s that feeling of belonging, combined with a desire to serve that has filled fire stations with volunteers – willing to work incredibly hard for no pay – since before this country was founded.

“We’ve always been a volunteer agency,” Laura Harris, said of the Idanha-Detroit station’s history, which includes her father, a volunteer for more than 20 years. “Occasionally our district will receive a staffing grant for temporary staff, but those grants eventually always run out.” In other words, the funding for rural fire districts does not cover the cost of a fully funded staff and it doesn’t look like that will change any time soon, even as the number of people in the districts and, in some cases, the area each district covers, continues to increase. “Over the years, the [Stayton Fire District] has evolved and grown from the ‘Fire Protection Engine Company No. 1’ to ‘The Stayton Rural Fire Protection District’ which includes four fire stations and stretches 107 square miles,” Brian Harris said. Similarly, Detroit Fire District includes the area around both Idanha and Detroit, the Mt. Angel Fire District is in partnership with Monitor and the Silverton Fire District recently grew to


encompass Scotts Mills. “And there are more calls now,” Mt. Angel’s Publicity and Information Officer, John Rossi, said. “Last year we had 671 and right now [in early October] we’re at 659.” It’s a situation that has everyone concerned. “Without strong supports, the whole structure collapses,” Laura Harris said. She began volunteering when she learned the Idanha-Detroit District was “hurting for volunteers.” “Most people think of the chief as the most important person at the fire district, but those who are in the field getting their hands dirty are what makes or breaks an organization. Having strong leadership is vital, but so is having strong followers,” who want nothing more than to help their fellow first responders and the community, she added. “Those individuals volunteering with us, you know they want to be there,” Gendhar said. “That person coming to help you, they’re doing it because they want to be there.” And the districts want them to be there as well, which is why they take recruitment seriously, holding community events, putting up billboards, utilizing social media and even – in the case of the Silverton Fire District – supporting Silverton High School’s Career and Technical Education program. “We loan them equipment and they use our facility,” Veit said. And they offer internships to students in Chemeketa’s Fire Protection program. “They don’t have to worry about fulltime employment and housing,” Veit explained. In return, the station has two more overnight volunteers gaining valuable experience on the job. With many volunteers retiring faster than they can be replaced, recruitment is imperative. “If you have the opportunity to volunteer at your local fire district, please do,” Laura Harris urged. “The fire service as a whole is hurting for volunteers, and the best way you can help is by stepping up to that plate.”

November 2023 • 19

Legal Matters

Settled Resort to pay Garden Foundation By Stephen Floyd A lawsuit against the Oregon Garden Foundation by the owner of the Oregon Garden Resort has been settled after three years of litigation. Parties agreed to terms Aug. 29 during a settlement hearing in Marion County Circuit Court including a financial payout to the foundation and the return of online login credentials. The case was otherwise scheduled for trial Oct. 16.

Timothy L Yount

Financial Advisor 313 N. Water St. Silverton, OR 97381 503-873-2454

Daniel Hailey

Financial Advisor 108 N. First St., Suite 101 Silverton, OR 97381 503-874-6162

Foundation Board Chair Ken Hector told Our Town they would not be disclosing details of the financial settlement, except that payment was due in 24 monthly installments starting in October. He said the foundation is “pleased that this is over and done with,” and looks forward to moving on. Dirk Winter, owner of Moonstone Garden Management Inc., parent company of Oregon Garden Resort, said they are also looking toward the future. “The Resort is always interested in helping the Garden grow into an outstanding world-class garden,” said Winter. “We want to see it thrive.” Moonstone took the foundation to court in August of 2020 amid a dispute over whether or not the company was in violation of a management agreement for The Oregon Garden. Moonstone began managing the garden in 2008 through an agreement with the foundation and the City of Silverton, which was also a defendant in the suit. That same year Moonstone opened Oregon Garden Resort, a private business next to the garden which the company owns and operates independent of the garden.

Moonstone claimed the foundation and city failed in their obligations to promote the garden and support the company, and accused them of unjust enrichment. It claimed, since 2008, the foundation received $944,794 in shared guest revenue and the city $2.3 million in occupancy taxes, while Moonstone incurred $3.6 million in debt. The company ultimately defaulted on this debt and in November of 2020 management of the garden was passed to the foundation, which operates the facility today. According to Hector, this transition was bumpy as Winter kept the garden’s Facebook, Instagram and URL login credentials, and had moved the annual Christmas Market from the garden to the resort. Back in court, defendants denied wrongdoing and claimed Moonstone violated the management agreement by failing to adequately staff and maintain the garden. The foundation further countersued for $1 million, claiming Moonstone owed outstanding profit shares and allegedly damaged garden facilities. The settlement nullified the terms of the management agreement and all parties have agreed to hold each other harmless from further claims. Winter agreed to turn over the garden’s online login credentials, which Hector said will make “a huge difference.” The Christmas Market will remain at the resort, while Hector said the foundation is considering its own holiday event at the garden similar to what was held in the past. In a separate settlement with Silverton, Moonstone agreed to build a sidewalk on city-owned property connecting the resort to the garden, with the city contributing $1,000 to the project.

Dog owner arrested in Joe Keeton’s death By Stephen Floyd

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A Bend woman accused of negligently causing the death of a former Silverton man during a dog attack in July has been taken into custody despite recent efforts to quash her warrant. Jessica Ray Charity, 38, who uses the last name McCleery, was booked into the Deschutes County Jail Oct. 16 for her alleged role in the July 19 death of Joe Keeton, 56.

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According to The Bend Bulletin, McCleery was arrested after she arrived at Deschutes County Circuit Court to speak with a judge. As of press time she remained in custody. During an initial court appearance Oct. 17 bail was set at $500,000. McCleery was ordered to have no contact with dangerous animals, specifically dogs. She is due back in court Nov. 7 to

enter a plea to charges of first-degree manslaughter and criminally negligent homicide. If convicted, McCleery faces at least ten years in prison. Prosecutors claim McCleery was at fault because the three pit-bull/bullmastiff mix dogs that fatally mauled Keeton were known to attack others and McCleery allegedly failed to mitigate this risk. The incident occurred during the early hours of July 19 at Juniper Ridge, a 1,500-acre wilderness area northeast of Bend known for homeless encampments. Both McCleery and Keeton were camping there at the time. The dogs were voluntarily surrendered by McCleery that day and are currently being kept at BrightSide Animal Center in Redmond. A separate civil process will determine if they are to be


euthanized, said prosecutors. McCleery was initially suspected of maintaining a dangerous dog, a class C felony, and the case was referred to the Deschutes County District Attorney’s Office. After prosecutors investigated, they found alleged evidence of more serious crimes and McCleery was indicted for manslaughter Sept. 15. A warrant was issued for her arrest and she remained at large during the following month. McCleery asked to quash the warrant in a letter hand-delivered to the courthouse Oct. 10, requesting instead to be given a date to appear on the charges. “I am very much wanting to get the ball rolling… so that all involved and effected [sic] can get answers, closure and as much as possible start moving on in our lives,” said the letter.


Academy grads FBI training completed By James Day For a police officer, getting an opportunity to train at the FBI Academy is the ultimate feather in your cap. The intense ten-week course, which is free to those whose applications are accepted, is the equivalent of graduate school-level instruction. And you learn from and with city, county, state, federal, NCIS and even NASA law enforcement personnel. Captain Todd Engstrom of the Silverton Police Department returned in September from his ten weeks at Quantico, Virginia, and he’s still beaming. So is Deputy Chief Charlie Hall of Mount Angel. “There were a lot of chiefs in my class,” Engstrom said. “I built some really good relationships with people and I know I can pick up the phone ... and use them as a sounding board.” The FBI Academy shares space with a Marine base and Engstrom described the 547-acre facility as a “beautiful campus. It looks like a small university.” And treats you like you are at a small university. “They keep you busy,” said Engstrom, who is halfway to a master’s at the University of Virginia as a result of his FBI Academy classes. Every student has to take a fitness course, while Engstrom filled his course load with classes such as managing and leading at-risk employees, conflict resolution and strategic communications. The schedule for Hall, whose Academy class graduated in March, included classes in crisis negotiations, media relations, essentials for leaders,

making sure they have resources and are not afraid to use them.” Hall has spent his police career at the Mt. Angel Police Department.

Capt. Todd Engstrom of Silverton.

Deputy Chief Charlie Hall of Mount Angel.



effective writing, and behavioral science. “I was involved in the international partnership program, which was an international group within the larger academy class,” Hall said. “Growing up, I had many positive experiences with foreign exchange students in our community and in my family. Learning about other countries has been a lifelong interest for me. “There were 28 countries represented in my class. My roommate during the academy was from Panama, employed by the National Border Service of Panama. We became fast friends and spent a lot of time together outside of class, including earning our ‘blue brick’ for swimming a total of 34 miles during the academy.” Engstrom, who served 27 years in the Portland Police Bureau before retiring and joining the Silverton force in 2021, said one of his key takeaways from the FBI Academy was the importance of officer wellness. “Wellness is big in law enforcement,” he said, “It’s something I really want to push forward. Physical wellness as well as financial and spiritual. Also, it’s

“I started as a reserve police officer in 2008 and became a full-time officer in 2010. I was a school resource officer from 2014-2018 and promoted to sergeant in 2018. A few months after coming back from the FBI National Academy, I was promoted to deputy chief.” Not altogether coincidentally, both chiefs, Jim Anglemier of Silverton and Mark Daniel of Mount Angel, are FBI Academy grads. Engstrom hopes to eventually serve as a chief. One of the key aims of the FBI Academy is to prepare officers for leadership roles. Screening is intense: just 1 to 2% of applicants are admitted. Engstrom’s father was a long-time chief in Arizona, as well as a 1982 FBI Academy participant. Todd was able to locate the yearbook from his father’s class during his Academy tour.

A Silverton man has pleaded guilty to attempting to lure minors into sexual acts and similar charges and could face nearly 16 years in prison. Jaiden Ethan Davis, 24, pleaded guilty Sept. 25 in Marion County Circuit Court to attempted first-degree unlawful sexual penetration, first-degree encouraging child sex abuse and four counts of luring a minor. He was otherwise scheduled for a trial beginning Oct. 23 on 25 separate counts of sex offenses involving five underage victims.


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“I really like being a police officer,” he said, “and I really like wearing a uniform. I like it, and I like what it represents.” Hall said the FBI Academy came at a perfect time for him. “I’m happy that I got to experience the national academy while I am still in the first half of my career,” he said. “It was nice to push the reset button and come back with a whole new perspective. The whole experience for me is not the conclusion, but a whole new beginning.”

Davis facing 16 years for luring minors By Stephen Floyd

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Davis admitted to sharing sexually explicit images with four underage males between 2017 and 2019 with the goal of inducing them to have sex. He also admitted to attempting to digitally penetrate a fifth male victim in 2019 while the victim was incapacitated, and to sharing images of child pornography between 2020 and 2021. He is scheduled for sentencing March 21, 2024, before Judge Daniel Wren. Prosecutors are seeking up to 15 years and eight months in prison, while the defense plans to ask for probation.


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November 2023 • 21


Gary Kohlmeyer Nov. 5, 1940 – Oct. 2, 2023

William (Bill) GrosJacques

Gary James Kohlmeyer, husband, father, and grandfather, has passed away at the age of 82, after a battle with lung cancer.

grandchildren, Kalie Austin (Cole), Kylie Vaughn and Chance Kohlmeyer, along with one great granddaughter, Elsie Austin.

He was born on Nov. 5, 1940 to parents Leland (Jim) Kohlmeyer and Mary Ann Peschka Kohlmeyer in Oakland, California.

He had a long and successful career working as a machinist for Boeing in Gresham, Oregon. Upon his retirement his hobbies included building model airplanes and ships, attending airshows, fly fishing, watching classic western films and reading Stephen King novels.

He is survived by his siblings, Fritzi Bronec, Lois Hassing, Bill Kohlmeyer (Skyla) and Beth Mallon (Kevin). He was preceded in death by his parents; sister, Jean Howard; brothers-in-law, Doug Howard, Joe Bronec, Dave Hassing; brother, Steve Kohlmeyer; and wife, Dianne Kohlmeyer. Gary graduated from St. Joseph High School in San Lorenzo, California. in 1959 and went on to attend Laney Trade School to further his education. Gary married his wife Dianne on Jan. 11, 1964 and in 1969, they moved from Oakland to Silverton, Oregon to raise their family. Gary was father to Mark Kohlmeyer and Cindy Vaughn (Ken). He had three

He was known for his quick wit, wonderful sense of humor and storytelling. Gary was always the life of the party, and everyone enjoyed being around him. Gary requested a private service for immediate family with a celebration of life for both him and his wife Dianne, as she preceded him in death four months prior. Arrangements are by Unger Funeral Chapel – Silverton. In lieu of flowers, donations can be made to your library to honor his love for reading.

Sept. 21, 1933 – Oct. 8, 2023 William (Bill) GrosJacquesWilliam Vincent GrosJacques, age 90, passed away peacefully at his home on Sunday Oct. 8, 2023. Bill was born Sept. 21, 1933 to Peter Vincent and Madeline (Fennimore) GrosJacques. He was the oldest of three sons. He graduated from Mt. Angel Prep School at the age of 17. After graduation he enlisted in the Navy and served in the Korean War. Shortly after returning to the States, Bill married Charlotte Kintz on Aug. 11, 1956. They enjoyed 67 years of marriage. Bill lived nearly all his life on the 17-acre GrosJacques homestead on the west side of Abbey Hill. He was a volunteer firefighter for Mount Angel for 13 years. Bill worked for the Benedictine Sisters Monastery for 17 years as maintenance coordinator. In 1979 he started working at the Oregon State Correctional Institute where he was in charge of the heating and locks, until retirement. Bill enjoyed hunting, fishing, crabbing, and clam digging. On many of these adventures

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he took his grandchildren along. They have many fond memories of Grandpa. Bill took great pride in his small farm whether it was taking care of his animals, chopping wood or attending to his many gardens. Nothing went to waste. He farmed up until May. He was also known for his homemade jerky and sausage. Bill is survived by his loving wife, Charlotte; children, Vincent GrosJacques, Ruth Ebner, Rose (Greg) Beyer, Jayne (Tom) Frey, Gail (Don) Ruef, and Mary Jo (Mike) Lundquist; 19 grandchildren; 24 greatgrandchildren. He is preceded in death by his parents; brothers, Jim and Ray; daughter, Leona; granddaughter, Rachel; and son-in-law, Nick Ebner. Services were held at St. Mary’s Catholic Church in Mount Angel on Oct. 18 with Rosary and Funeral Mass, followed by interment at Calvary Cemetery. In lieu of flowers, donations can be made to St. Mary’s Parish, Mt. Angel Fire Department or Willamette Vital Health (Hospice). Arrangements by Unger Funeral Chapel.



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Gayle Stark July 4, 1945 – Oct. 15, 2023

Kenneth Edward Bauer

Gayle Marie Stark was born to Victor F. and (Thelma) Marie Grossnickle on July 4, 1945, in Salem Oregon, across the street from Bush Pasture Park while the 4th of July was celebrated with fireworks. For her entire life, she loved that everyone celebrated her birthday on the 4th.

April 21, 1949 – Oct. 1, 2023 Kenneth Edward Bauer was born on April 21, 1949 and passed away peacefully on Oct. 1, 2023. Ken, alongside his wife, Pat, made Silverton, Oregon their home for the last 30 years.

Medal, and the Vietnam Campaign Medal. Professionally, Ken built a reputation as a well-respected foreman at Peter Pan Bakery in North Hollywood throughout the 1970s and 1980s. He later took on a role for the United States Postal Service as a letter carrier in Van Nuys, California.

His childhood was spent in North Hollywood, California, where he was raised by his parents Otto Michael Bauer and Hazel Lorraine Fortner. He completed his education at North Hollywood High School, graduating in 1967. In November 1968, Ken volunteered for the United States Army. Serving as a Sergeant, he managed a MARS station in Soc Trang, South Vietnam. His dedicated service enabled countless soldiers to communicate with their families back home, collaborating closely with USAbased HAM operators. After honorably completing two tours, he returned stateside in 1971. For his service, Ken was bestowed with the National Defense Service Medal, the Vietnam Service

Following a move to Oregon, he transferred to the Woodburn Post Office, retiring in 2007. His service was recognized with multiple awards, including the Twenty-Year Service Award in honor of his dedication to the U.S Government. He leaves behind his devoted wife of 33 years, Pat; their son, Matt; his sister, Janet Smith; and several nieces and nephews. A memorial service in honor of Ken will be held at Willamette National Cemetery on Nov. 3, at 1 p.m. In lieu of flowers, the family requests donations be made to the American Red Cross.

In Memory Of …

George Smith

Feb. 15, 1935 — Oct. 5, 2023

William Grosjacques

Sept. 21, 1933 — Oct. 8, 2023

Gayle Stark

July 4, 1945 — Oct. 15, 2023

Patty Rock

Oct. 10,1940 — Oct. 16, 2023

Always honoring your request for traditional fire cremation, eco-friendly aqua cremation, celebration of life and funeral services involving earth burial.

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Bob and Gayle settled in Pratum, Oregon on a small property with woods, pasture, animals and garden. The Pratum garden was productive, and with the help of Vic, Gayle worked very hard to preserve enough food to feed her family and the families of her sisters. And with the chickens, goats and cows over the years, home grown food was a staple. Gayle and Bob moved to Pflugerville, Texas in 1983 where they made life-long friends and Bob founded GRR Electric. After three years, they returned to Silverton and built a home on the back portion of Vic and Marie’s property. In 2001, they moved to Aumsville and in 2022, Gayle moved to Davenport Place in Silverton, living there until her passing. Gayle was very supportive of those around her throughout her life, serving her church and family – not in the limelight, but in crucial ways. She often helped Bob by getting building supplies for his jobs or prepared food for social gatherings. The first meeting of Silver Creek Fellowship was held in Bob and Gayle’s Silverton home. Gayle loved music and played the piano, passing this love and talent to her daughter and granddaughter. She also enjoyed embroidery, quilting and recording the family history through photos and stories. Winter was her favorite season; she reveled in storms and snowfalls. Bob and Gayle celebrated their 50th wedding anniversary in December of 2018, six months prior to Bob’s passing. Gayle is preceded in death by her husband, Robert; her parents, Vic and Marie; and her sisters, Beverly and Barbara. She is the proud grandmother to Caylan Stark (Cassie), Keska Hettwer, Andreas and Logan Stark. Her children, Troy Stark (Debbie) live in Vashon, Washington and Elisha Cahill (Jeff) in Aumsville. She was thrilled by the birth of her great grandson, Holden John, to Caylan and Cassie in 2021.

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Gayle grew up the youngest of three daughters, with sisters Beverly and Barbara. Their father was the police chief in Silverton and Gayle went through school in town, graduating from Silverton Union High School in 1963. Gayle had a brief marriage to her high school sweetheart that produced her son, Troy. In 1968, Gayle met Robert Stark, a Navy man on leave. They were married in December 1968 and had a daughter, Elisha Marie.

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Interment was held at Willamette National Cemetery on Oct. 27, 2023. A celebration of life service was held Oct. 28, 2023 at Silver Creek Fellowship. Arrangements by Unger Funeral Chapel.


November 2023 • 23

Sports & Recreation

Managing expectations Austin Ratliff is used to being in the spotlight. A starter on the Silverton High football team as a sophomore, he helped lead the Foxes to a state Class 5A championship in 2021, catching six passes for 172 yards and 3 TDs in the semifinals vs. West Albany and he also caught a TD pass in the title win vs. Thurston. Ratliff, a speedy and powerful 6-2, 210pound athlete, also played defensive back for the Foxes (five tackles in the title game) and it is defense that he is focusing on at Oregon State. Ratliff spent his freshman year at the Air Force Academy but came back to Oregon last spring to enroll at Oregon State. To date he has not seen any action for the Beavers and has had to content himself with internal honors such as being on the “scout team of the week.” Scout team members “pretend” they are the opponent and run their plays and formations in an effort to help the first-stringers prepare. “This has been very challenging for me since I am used to being on the field and being a contributor,” Ratliff told Our

Ex-Foxes star Ratliff adapts to OSU life was 6-1 and ranked No. 11 heading into the Oct. 28 Arizona game which is after Our Town’s presstime.

Town in an email exchange. “However, I find it very humbling and am easily reminded at how big of a deal playing at Oregon State is, even if I am not playing yet. I look at this as a challenge and an opportunity to earn my playing time and to do all the little things that matter. “Something that I have found different than high school is how important special teams is. In high school I never played special teams. Now, I am trying everything possible to get on them. The first step for me is to continue to work hard every day and find a role on special teams.” Despite how badly Ratliff wants to get on the field he also understands that other goals are more important on a squad that

hang out with friends.” And, just like in football, experience matters in terms of coping with college.

“I think that the team has done “School has been good this year a great job so far, but it is not and better than last year since the time to worry about how I know how to make a good many wins or losses we have on schedule with the best classes for the season yet,” he said. “The each term possible.” most important thing is for us to Alumni Watch: Two of Ratliff’s keep taking things week by week teammates on that 2021 state and not worry about the outside championship team also are noise. Before the season, we trying to find their way in college knew that there would be a lot Austin Ratliff. ball. Wide receiver Vandon SUBMITTED more attention towards us and Fessler, Silverton’s MVP in more media about how successful the title game, is a redshirt freshman at we are. That doesn’t matter to us as long Washington State. He has not traveled as we keep taking things week by week.” with the team and, like Ratliff, has not Ratliff is majoring in finance and was seen any game action. Like Ratliff, he quite open about the juggling exercise is hoping special teams will be his route that college football players face. to playing time. Quarterback Jordan “I would say the toughest adjustment McCarty has seen limited but regular since being at Oregon State has been time at Western Oregon. McCarty has managing time,” he said. “Playing football played in all 8 games for the 3-5 Wolves is obviously at the top of my priority list, and has completed all nine of his passes but it can be hard to find time for other for 154 yards. He has rushed 22 times for things like school or even finding time to 88 yards and two TDs.





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Foxes clinch

SHS football improves to 8-0 with big win By James Day Silverton took down host West Albany 49-28 on Oct. 20, to move to 8-0 and clinch the Mid-Willamette Conference title. The Foxes have won or shared the past three league titles. The Foxes broke a 14-14 tie right before halftime on a 20-yard TD pass from QB Sawyer Teeney to WR Elijah Howard, who made a spectacular catch in the back of the end zone. Silverton boosted the lead to 35-14 with a pair of third-period TD runs by Brody Sullivan and never was seriously threatened. The contest marked the 11th time that West Albany and the Foxes have played since 2012. Silverton has a 6-5 edge in the series, which includes a 2-2 split in four playoff games. The Foxes closed the regular season with an Oct. 27 game at home vs. Lebanon on Senior Night. The West Albany contest featured 40 penalties, with 19 being enforced against West Albany for 165 yards and 18 against the Foxes for 150. In addition, two penalties offset each other and the Bulldogs declined one. Kennedy, meanwhile, moved to 7-1 with a 45-8 home win vs North Marion. The Trojans, ranked 3rd in Class 3A, are 4-1 in Special District 1 and closed the regular season with an Oct. 26 home game. Kennedy already has clinched a playoff berth. Alumni Watch: Former Silverton High athlete Jori Paradis captured the PacWest Conference women’s cross country championship on Jori Paradis Oct. 21 in Fresno, SUBMITTED PHOTO California. Paradis, a senior at Concordia of Irvine, equaled her personal best for 6 kilometers with a 20:51.9 clocking on the course at Woodward Park. Paradis is the first Concordia women’s runner to win a conference title, and the 1-2 finish provided by Paradis and teammate Porsche Eismann helped the Lady Golden Eagles claim second place in the team race. The strong performances by Paradis and her teammates qualified Concordia for the NCAA Division II West Regionals


on Saturday, Nov. 4, in Monmouth at the Ash Creek Preserve course. Paradis and the rest of the women’s field will get the starting gun at 10 a.m. The preserve is at Western Oregon University in the far northwest corner of the campus. Soccer: The Silverton girls squad has clinched a Class 5A playoff berth. The Foxes were 6-5-2 overall and 5-2 in Mid-Willamette play heading into their season-finale against McKay (0-21, 0-13). Silverton, the No. 9 team in Class 5A, currently is third in league play, with the MWC set to receive four automatic playoff berths. The Foxes, who sealed their playoff entry with a 1-0 blanking on Oct. 19 of Crescent Valley, a 5A semifinalist a year ago, were scheduled to find out their first round playoff opponent last weekend. The status of the Foxes’ boys team is a bit more tenuous. Silverton was 2-4-1 in league play and 7-5-1 overall heading into the finale vs. defending 5A champion McKay (3-2-1). The Foxes are tied for 6th with Central, but still have playoff life because they are ranked 11th and there are two statewide at-large berths in addition to the four automatic MWC slots. Volleyball: Silverton has clinched a spot in the 5A playoffs, and the Foxes were scheduled to face an opponent to be determined on Oct. 28, after Our Town’s presstime. A win would put the Foxes in the state quarterfinals on Nov. 3 in Forest Grove. Silverton was 12-6 overall, 9-4 in the MWC (good for fourth place) and was ranked No. 9 in Class 5A. Winter Officials: Practice begins for the winter high school sports of basketball, swimming and wrestling on Nov. 13 and the Oregon Athletic Officials Association and the Oregon School Activities Association are recruiting officials for all sports. There is an immediate need for officials in basketball and wrestling, said OAOA Executive Director Jack Folliard. Becoming a high school official has several benefits including staying involved in athletics, maintaining good physical condition and earning money, Folliard said. “Officials provide valuable service to high schools and students, make a positive impact in the community and build relationships.” Those interested should visit www.newofficials.org.

Winter with the Y Thank You... ... to all of our amazing Volunteer Coaches who made the Fall Sports season a success for our youth participants!

BASKETBALL Fall Basketball season has begun! Winter Basketball sign-ups are open! Winter Basketball season will begin Tuesday, Jan. 16, 2024 Micro Basketball (ages 3-5) registration is open. Season begins Saturday, Jan. 20, 2024 at the Community Center

COMMUNITY POOL The Pool is open and the cover is on! Aquacise, private swim lessons, swim team, lap swim. Questions? Contact Annika Rogers at arogers@theYonline.org or call 503-873-6456

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601 Miller St., Silverton www.theyonline.org November 2023 • 25

A Grin at the End

Money It’s not always the root of all evil By Carl Sampson

It’s been said that sports build character. If that’s true, you could also say that money reveals character.

The other day I was eavesdropping on a conversation about capitalism. The gist of it was that capitalism is bad and some people have too much money, while others don’t have enough. Furthermore, according to this discussion, rich people are not nice enough or generous enough. As Deion Sanders, my new favorite college football coach, would say, that’s a bunch of bull junk. It is an argument borne of ignorance and, I suppose, jealousy. The world population is about 7 billion. Of these, some are flat out evil. They twist everything in a way that feeds their ego and their agenda. Interestingly, some politicians fall into this category. Right, Mr. Putin? Others are wonderful people. They are kind and generous and the sort of people you depend on when the going

gets rough. My wife falls into that category. Still others are in the middle. They aren’t all bad, and they aren’t all good. They do the best they can but occasionally – often? – fall short. I’m in that category. For all of these people, money is not what makes them good or bad. Poor people can be evil, and so can rich people. Conversely, poor people can be saints, and so can rich people. No matter the size of their investment accounts, people are who they are. A hint to those who fall short: you can change.

Some rich people feed their narcissism with their money. They buy fancy houses, cars, yachts, jets, and even islands. Which is good for their ego. But they can also fund charities whose goals include feeding the poor, helping the arts and other good deeds. Some poor people are generous. They may not have a lot of money but they share their spirit and their time with others. It is a truly marvelous thing to see. I occasionally buy a lottery ticket, especially when the prize gets really big. As I lay down my hard-earned dollars I start day dreaming about what I could do with a billion dollars. I’d pay off the mortgage, then I’d look into building a theater complex for plays and concerts – “Now playing at the CarlDome: Taylor Swift!”

And why not? A newspaper I read has a real estate section. I call it the funny pages. Every Friday, it features some of the most gawdawful ugly houses in the nation. The price tags can run past $100 million. Seriously, one movie star’s tile bathroom looked as though a Lego box threw up on the walls and floor. I’m sure she’s a good person – or at least I hope she is. I hope she donates to the needy and other charities. That would be nice. But I’d still need a blindfold to use that bathroom. Money doesn’t give anyone good or bad taste, just as it doesn’t make them good or bad. That is entirely up to the person they see in the mirror. Carl Sampson is a freelance writer and editor. He lives in Stayton.

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#T2775 SO MUCH OPPORTUNITY 3 BR, 2 BA 2190 sqft 3.36 Acres. Dallas. Call Meredith at ext. 324, Ryan at ext. 322 $538,000 (WVMLS#803517) #T2791 DUAL LIVING 4 BR, 3.5 BA 2693 sqft 4.58 Acres. Salem. Call Meredith at ext. 324, Ryan at ext. 322 $948,700 #T2794 HIGHLY DESIRABLE COUNTRY PROPERTY 2 BR, 1.5 BA 1548 sqft 2.2 Acres. Salem. Call Meredith at ext. 324, Ryan at ext. 322 $596,700 (WVMLS#808219)

#T2791 DUAL LIVING 4 BR, 3.5 BA 2693 sqft 4.58 Acres. Salem. Call Meredith at ext. 324, Ryan at ext. 322 $948,700

#T2797 IMMACULATE 2015 BUILD 4 BR, 2.5 BA 2643 sqft Albany. Call Whitney at ext. 320 or Mike at ext. 312 $625,000


#T2794 HIGHLY DESIRABLE COUNTRY PROPERTY 2 BR, 1.5 BA 1548 sqft 2.2 Acres. Salem. Call Meredith at ext. 324, Ryan at ext. 322 $596,700 (WVMLS#808219)






#T2781 RURAL SETTING 3 BR, 2 BA 2044 sqft Call Meredith at ext. 324, Ryan at ext. 322 $725,000 (WVMLS#805144)

Call Micha or Sarah at 503-873-1425 Or Visit silvertonrealty.com

503.873.3545 28 • November 2023

#T2789 SILVERTON MOBILE ESTATES 2 BR, 2 BA 1248 sqft Call Becky at ext. 313 $180,000


#T2761 GREAT OPPORTUNITY 1.66 Acres. Salem. Call Whitney at ext. 320 or Mike at ext. 312 $199,000 (WVMLS#800102) #T2795 2 BUILABLE LOTS .45 Acres. Silverton. Call Meredith at ext. 324, Ryan at ext. 322 $147,800 (WMLS#808971)

303 Oak St. • Silverton Facebook.com/OurTown.SMASM

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