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Volume 4 Issue 1/Winter 2013 (Display until April 1, 2013)


Ty Curtis Interview PAGE 17

Winter 2013 • Willamette Valley Life


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Three Years and Counting


hope you had a safe and wonderful Christmas and New Year’s. I’m thankful that I had some time to spend with my family, and I’m excited about the new year to come. As we enter the fourth year of publishing Willamette Valley Life, I’m amazed at the growth that we have experienced in just three short years. I have many people to thank for that, from the editorial, management, sales and distribution staff to the wonderful writers and photographers that have helped move the magazine’s quality up a few notches with each issue. Thank you for picking up Willamette Valley Life each season. Many of you have shared encouraging words with us and we appreciate that. If you have any subject ideas that you would like see in future issues, don’t hesitate to contact me personally. I hope that you enjoy our third anniversary issue and that 2013 is your best year ever.





E X P L O R E •




The Willamette Valley’s Premier Lifestyle Quarterly

Winter 2010/Issue 1













Genius In Toyland: A.C. Gilbert (page 6)

Top 10

Valley Destinations To Help Lose The Winter Blues Sheldon High School Choir perform at the Eugene Irish Cultural Festival in Eugene, Oregon.


Ken Gardner writes for life, financial liberty and the pursuit of member happiness. He has worked in the financial industry for over 10 years and does not have perfect credit…but he’s getting there. Born and raised in the Willamette Valley, Sophie Hawley is a food blogger and enthusiastic food-eater who adores breakfast, cheese and local wine. She lives with her tall husband and miniature dachshund, and enjoys attending Spartan training to combat her caloric intake. During the week she keeps books for a local non-profit organization. Sarah Horner is a freelance writer, photographer and winemaker. Eight years of experience in the local wine industry allowed her to explore the rich culture the Willamette Valley offers. The sights, sounds and stories of the region inspire her and she enjoys sharing her discoveries




with readers. Sarah lives with her husband, two teenage boys and miscellaneous pets. Ellen Kersey is a retired high school English/ journalism teacher, presently teaching writing and journalism at Corban University in Salem. She loves writing features about people who have stories to tell (that pretty much includes everyone!). She lives with her husband Earl, and loves NOT cooking. Ryan Reichert is a digital marketing professional in Portland who relocated from the midwest in large part because of his passion for wine and food. He holds an Advanced certification from the Wine & Spirits Education Trust, is the Wine Ambassador for Travel Oregon, and is the managing editor for Palate Press: The online wine magazine.

Advertising deadline for the upcoming Willamette Valley Life Spring 2013 issue: February 21, 2013 Reach thousands of readers throughout the Willamette Valley. To reserve space call 503.507.1228

4 Valley Floor 10 People and Places 12 Daycation 17 Music & Entertainment

All Things Irish

19 The Vine

Irish culture is alive and well in the Willamette Valley. From Portland to Eugene, classes, performances, festivals and events abound for those with a love of Irish dance, music and food.

20 Your Money 22 Eat ON THE COVER Murray Irish Dancers

PUBLISHERS Randy and Dawn Hill

MAILING ADDRESS P.O. Box 17264 Salem, Oregon 97305

SENIOR EDITOR Jessica Gardner


ASSOCIATE EDITORS Erin Grace, Anne Walton


ART DIRECTION Hill Design Studios PUBLISHING COORDINATOR Ken Gardner DISTRIBUTION Profile In Delivery, Kathy Melson CONTRIBUTING WRITERS AND PHOTOGRAPHERS Ken Gardner, Sophie Hawley, Randy HIll, Sarah Horner, Ellen Kersey, Ryan Reichert, Anne Walton ADVERTISING SALES L. Andrew Brown/Concept Marketing Randy Hill PHONE 503.507.1228

Willamette Valley Life Magazine is published quarterly. Opinions expressed in this magazine are those of the authors and not necessarily those of Willamette Valley Life Magazine. This publication cannot be reproduced in any form without written consent from Willamette Valley Life Magazine. Although we have made very effort to insure the accuracy of the information in this publication, due to the passage of time and the anomalies inherent in the publishing process, we cannot be responsible for errors or incorrect information. Please contact the individual establishments to confirm information. 26,000 copies printed and distributed throughout the Willamette Valley. Copyright 2013 by Willamette Valley LIfe Magazine

One year subscriptions are $16. Send check or money order to Subscriptions: P.O. Box 17264, Salem, OR 97305. Make payable to “Willamette Valley Life.”

Winter 2013 • Willamette Valley Life



B.B. King, King of Blues, at Wine Heaven in Mt. Angel The Shedd in Eugene




he Shedd Institute is pleased to bring back blues legend Riley “B.B.” King to Eugene’s Silva Concert Hall on Sunday, March 10th, 7:30-9:30 p.m. For more than half a century, B.B. King has defined the blues worldwide. His reign as King of the Blues has been as long as that of any monarch, yet B.B. King continues to wear his crown well. At the age of 87 he is still light on his feet, singing and playing the blues with relentless passion. For concert information, contact the Shedd Institute at or call 541.434.7000. The Shedd Institute is located at 868 High St., Eugene, OR. 97401.





and Mount Angel’s own Benedictine Sisters Monastery Mustard (including the hard to find “Marionberry Mystery”). The tasting room is located on the corner of Main Street and College (Highway 214), across from the Mount Angel Brewing building, at 215 N. Main St., Mount Angel, OR. 97362. Their website is They are open Tuesday through Friday from 3 p.m. to 6 p.m., and Saturday and Sunday by appointment. Call 503.779.7584 or email lisa@mtangelcv. com for more information.

Horsemanship Extravaganza

Let’s Get Crabby ome to King Estate Winery in Eugene over the four consecutive weekends from Jan. 12 through Feb. 2, 2013, to enjoy unlimited Dungeness crab and pinot gris at Crab Fest 2013! This has become a highly anticipated annual tradition at King Estate. King Estate Winery is located southwest of Eugene and produces Pinot Noir, Pinot Gris and limited amounts of Chardonnay. Founded in 1991 by the King family, King Estate is committed to producing Oregon wines of exceptional quality using organic and sustainable farming methods, meticulous fruit selection, impeccable organic winemaking practices and judicious blending. The beautiful estate of 1,033 acres is certified organic and includes 470 acres of organic vineyards, as well as 30 acres of fruits, vegetables and flowers. The Estate is crowned by the charming, Europeanstyle winery, home to a restaurant and wine bar that features wine tasting, winery tours and fine dining. The menu incorporates estate- and locallygrown organic ingredients that fully complement the King Estate wines.

here is a new and surprising addition to the wonderful things already found in Mount Angel. The town boasts German cuisine and traditions year-round and is known for its annual, worldrenowned Oktoberfest. However, Jeff and Lisa Scrimenti, owners of Mount Angel Cellars and Vineyards, have opened a tasting room offering a taste of traditional Italy with authentic Italian fruit wines, honey mead and fruit preserves. They also feature Pinot Noir and Pinot Gris from Hanson Vineyards, located just a few miles from Mount Angel. Tastings are complemented with a variety of chocolates and Italian sweets (cannoli!) along with cheeses and savory appetizers for a rewarding Oregon tasting experience. The fruit wines have been commended for their excellence and authenticity, and their honey mead is like none other available in Oregon. Along with the wines, they sell Italian all-natural preserves, gift baskets

Additional wines are available for purchase at the event. This event features open seating. Doors will open promptly at 6:00 p.m. Pre-registration is highly suggested, but, tickets will be available up to 1 hour before the event. After registering online at kingestate. com, contact Micaela Stewart at 541.942.9874, ext. 111 if you need to make arrangements for seating parties of eight or more. King Estate Winery is located at 80854 Territorial Highway, Eugene, OR. 97405.

Willamette Valley Life • Winter 2013

xpert and amateur horse enthusiasts alike look forward to the Northwest Horse Fair and Expo, the Northwest’s biggest equestrian event! The Expo is held at the Linn County Fairgrounds in Albany on March 21-24, and showcases some of the world’s best horse trainers, breeders and competitors. Horsemanship clinicians like Chris Cox, Steve Edwards, Kristina Harrison and Rick Lamb will be in attendance, and various breeds will be shown for their unique characteristics. The favorite All Breed Challenge will take place all four days, culminating in an overall winning horse and rider pair! The Challenge tests the abilities of horse and rider teams through a series of obstacles and maneuvers that push them out of their comfort zones. The event is open to riders ages 12 years old or older from all disciplines including western, dressage, hunter jumper, trail riders, natural horsemen, gaited horse riders, mule riders and more. The Expo also features one of the biggest vendor exhibitions on the West Coast. Check the website at for admission information and a schedule of events and clinics.

“A lot of people like snow. I find it to be an unnecessary freezing of water.” –Carl Reiner


2 0 1 3


January, February, March JANUARY 12 – An Evening with Robin Williams – Eugene. Academy Award-winning actor and multiple Grammy Award-winning performer Robin Williams will stop in at the Silva Concert Hall in Eugene’s Hult Center. He sits down to “chat” with his old friend, comedian, actor, director and author David Steinberg. 541.434.7000. 18-March 15 – “When We Were Young: Childhood Around the Valley” – Salem. “When We Were Young” is the Willamette Heritage Center’s third annual Heritage Invitational and explores the range of ideas about childhood. Enjoy toys, dolls and games from the late 1800s through the 1940s. 23 – “Nunset Boulevard” – Salem. The highly-anticipated latest installment of Dan Goggin’s international smashhit “Nunsense” franchise is coming to Salem! “Nunset Boulevard: The Nunsense Hollywood Bowl Show” stars beloved TV icon Cindy Williams (“Laverne & Shirley”) and is touring nationally. 503.375.3574. 24-25 – Solas, “Shamrock City” – Eugene. Solas is one of the most popular, influential and exciting Celtic bands ever to emerge from America. After ten albums, Solas band leader Seamus Egan was inspired by his family history to create the film project “Shamrock City.” 541.434.7000. 25-26 – First Taste Oregon – Salem. First Taste Oregon (formerly known as the Oregon Wine, Food & Brew Festival) allows visitors to taste and see the wide array of talents found in every corner of Oregon. Enjoy entertainment, art, food, sprits, brews and wine from all over the state. For more information,

541.497.7481. or 866.904.6165.

more. 503.586.8126.

25-27 – Mo’s Crab and Chowder Festival – Turner. Join Willamette Valley Vineyards for a rollicking event filled with fine Oregon wine and Mo’s world-famous clam chowder. January is “Oregon Crab Month” and Mo’s will have their steaming chowder bowls, fresh Oregon coast crab and other seafood available for purchase. 503.588.9463.


showcasing the state’s wine industry, gourmet foods, art and music. Enjoy superb cuisine, fine art and crafts, guest chef demonstrations, live music, and wine tasting from some of the best wineries and vineyards in Oregon.

8 – Beethoven Violin Concerto – Eugene. Spend an evening with Beethoven as audience favorite Stefan Jackiw returns on violin. Also featured will be pieces by Bartok and Rouse. For classical music lovers this will be a must-see. 541.682.5000.

17 – Shamrock Fun Run - Corvallis. Before you drink green beer, get your running shoes on for this year’s St. Patrick’s Day 5k. Sponsored by the Corvallis Parks & Recreation department and Osborn Aquatic Center, this fun run and walk trails around the Corvallis Riverfront.


March 8: Stefan Jackiw

8-9 – KLCC Microbrew Festival – Eugene. Microbrew tasting featuring 50 breweries and over 100 beers from the West Coast and beyond. Enjoy live music and collaboration brews. Benefits KLCC 89.7 FM. 541.463.6030. asp?NewsID=366. 9 – Puttin’ on the Ritz – Salem. In its seventeenth year, this event has become a sell-out event popular with both the Willamette and Salem community. You will not want to miss this delightful evening which includes a delicious dinner and dancing. 503.871.6127. 9-10 – Roadster Show – Salem. The Northwest’s finest hot rods, classics, muscle cars and more will be on display at this 7th annual event. You won’t want to miss it. 15-16 – Wurstfest – Mount Angel. “Meat up” with all your friends and family at the 5th annual Wurstfest, presented by the Mt. Angel Chamber of Commerce. Vendors will be offering a variety of German sausages, beer, chocolates and

7-10 – The 34th Annual Lane County Home & Garden Show – Eugene. Featuring over 300 exhibits with products and services for your home and yard. Hourly home and garden seminars, prize drawings and local grower plant sales. 541.484.9247. eugenehomeshow. com.

For more Willamette Valley events, visit our website at To submit your Valley event for consideration, send your event listing to

8-10 – The McMinnville Wine & Food Classic (Sip!) – McMinnville. This weekend event features over 100 booths

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The Sons of Malarkey larkey perform at the annual Eugene Irish Cultural Festival in Eugene, Oregon.

Irish culture is alive and well in the Willamette Valley. From

Portland to Eugene, classes, performances, festivals and events abound for those with a love of Irish dance, music and food. In Salem, one of the most popular venues promoting Irish culture is Ceili of the Valley’s monthly ceili, a social gathering involving music and dance, and often storytelling or singing as well. Ceili of the Valley, headed by Carl and Ginny BeilsteinWedel, is a non-profit group formed in 2006, “dedicated to promoting Irish culture mainly through music and dance.” To support their mission, the group attends and performs at various community events at no cost, including the World Beat Festival. The group hosts ceilis on the second Friday of every month at Salem’s VFW Hall. The group also holds Irish social

dance classes Tuesday evenings, and beginners are welcome, Ginny Beilstein-Wedel said. “We’ve even had a 4-year-old, although young children need to have participating dancing partners,” she said. “Most of us … have never taken dance classes before this and are just regular people who love the spirit and social interaction of Irish dance.” The November ceili featured Sam Keator teaching Irish dance and calling steps. Keator, who lives in Tualatin, was the teacher who started the Ceili of the Valley classes, and his business, Irish Entertainment, finds him teaching and calling Irish dance, and promoting Irish concerts. Keator is also completing his ninth year as president of the All-Ireland Cultural Society (AICS), a group whose aim is “to bring social opportunities, Irish entertainment, and cultural information to the Portland area.” Not that Keator lets that stop him from expanding into

In addition to culture, a large number of people living in the valley have some Irish heritage. According to Ann McBride, one of the hosts of KMUZ radio’s Celtic Music Hour in Salem, one in every five people living in the Willamette Valley is of some Irish decent. the rest of the Willamette Valley. “I am very happy to see that the Irish culture has grown in Salem beyond just dance,” he said. “They’ve gone from dancing to concerts, workshops, language, community radio, parades and singing.” Keator’s interest in Irish dancing began in the winter of 1997, when a friend sent him a motivational card listing 101 ways to reduce stress.

“Somewhere in the middle of the card, ‘dance a jig’ jumped out at me,” he said. “I took it to heart and sought out the Irish dance in Portland.” The November ceili also featured Hanz Araki and Kathryn Claire, a duo who perform at the Ceili of the Valley ceili twice a year. Araki and Claire have been playing together for about three years. “We perform three to four times a week,” Araki said, “and we practice nearly every day.” “Kathryn has been playing violin since she was … about 6,” Araki said. “She taught herself guitar as a means to explore her singing, which she also did from a very young age.” Araki himself comes from a long line of flautists. “Even though I didn’t start playing music until I was 17, it is long in my blood. One could say I have a genetic disposition for flute.” According to Araki, the level of Irish musicianship in the Willamette Valley is quite high. “A number of players Continued on page 9

Winter 2013 • Willamette Valley Life


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Ceili of the Valley members performing at the Newport Celtic Festival in June 2012. All Things Irish: Continued from page 7

are very devoted to the tradition,” he said, “and they seem to be getting more and more proficient.” He has taken part in special concerts with the Salem Concert Band at the Elsinore, and “the response is always inspiring.” Farther south, Irish culture also thrives in Eugene, where Peggy Hinsman heads up an Irish cultural festival every March. “My goal … is to enhance the festival by adding lots of workshops … so people can learn about authentic aspects of Irish culture,” she said. According to Hinsman, Irish culture is evident in the Eugene area in at least three Irish pubs and four weekly Irish music sessions on Sunday, Monday, Tuesday and Thursday evenings. Hinsman plays traditional Irish music on the fiddle, the bodhran (the Irish drum) and the low D whistle at the Thursday event. In addition to culture, a large number of people living in the valley have some Irish heritage. According to Ann McBride, one of the hosts of KMUZ radio’s Celtic Music Hour in Salem, one in every five people living in the Willamette Valley is of some Irish decent. According to Hinsman, the number is closer to 40 percent. One such person is Laurie Smith,

Beth Nevue and Ann Peck McBride host Ceili of the Valley Celtic Music Hour each Friday from 7:00 p.m. until 8:00 p.m. on KMUZ 88.5 FM

a psychology professor at Corban University in Salem. Smith’s family’s name was Keen and their origins are in County Kerry, near Killarney. Smith visited Ireland with her husband in 2005, and she says, “[I] loved Ireland for its superb landscapes and verdant valleys, rolling green hills and castle ruins, and dairy cattle feeding by fabulous stone walls and clear lakes.” Smith and her husband also had the opportunity to visit Killarney itself. “There are still shops with the Keen name,” she said. “I would go in and chat them up, and inevitably someone would cheerily claim me as a cousin!” Ellen Kersey is a retired high school English/ journalism teacher, presently teaching writing and journalism at Corban University in Salem. She loves writing features about people who have stories to tell (that pretty much includes everyone!). She recently moved into Bonaventure of Salem, a senior retirement center, with her husband Earl, and she loves NOT cooking.

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The Trappist Abbey Self-Sufficiency Through Enterprise




Father Peter weighs freshly baked fruitcakes in the Abbey bakery.

The Trappist order originated in 17th century France and there are currently 16 Trappist monasteries in the United States. They are a cloistered order, cut off from mainstream life, and depend on their products to provide for their basic needs. distributed to outlets such as Made in Oregon stores, Norm Thompson, specialty grocery stores in Oregon and Washington, and can be ordered online. The warehouse at the monastery originally housed a variety of businesses, including a church furniture production facility that created pews and other furnishings from Abbey-harvested lumber. The Trappists later rented the space to an

Willamette Valley Life • Winter 2013


ucked away in the rolling hills of the north Willamette Valley, nestled on 1,400 verdant acres in rural Lafayette, sits Our Lady of Guadalupe Trappist Abbey. Home to 28 monks dedicated to a quiet, contemplative life, this peaceful compound is also headquarters to a variety of bustling industries. The Trappist order originated in 17th century France and there are currently 16 Trappist monasteries in the United States. They are a cloistered order, cut off from mainstream life, and depend on their products to provide for their basic needs. The money earned at the Abbey is only for the care of the resident monks and donation to local charity; they do not pay any proceeds to the church or a higher order. The original Trappists were farmers, and the Lafayette abbey still rents a portion of its property for agriculture. When it became difficult to sustain the Abbey community on farming alone, the monks developed other businesses to earn money. Currently, the local Trappists run a bookbinding operation, a bookstore, a bakery, a wine storage facility, a wine shipping center, and a forestry business. Additionally, the Abbey hosts quiet retreats for individuals and groups in its guest cottages. Father Richard joined the Abbey over 43 years ago and currently oversees all of the monastery’s business operations. The Abbey’s primary source of income is the on-site bookbindery, although Father Richard pointed out that business diminishes significantly each year due to digital technology. The Abbey’s biggest bookbinding customers include universities, law firms, hospitals and graduate students who require bound theses. In an attempt to generate additional revenue, the monks also created hard-bound blank journals that are sold in the Abbey bookstore. In the Abbey bakery, about 1,000 pounds of fruit cake are produced each week. Traditional fruit cake, date-nut cake and tropical dessert cake are all handcrafted with secret recipes. The chief baker, Olivia Morales, is a secular employee, but all her bakers are monks. “I get out more than anybody here,” Father Richard chuckled. “We live a sequestered, quiet life, but I am the one responsible for the cake deliveries.” The cakes are sold at the Abbey and

The monastery’s church, built and furnished with wood harvested from the Abbey property.

office furniture company, and when it closed, the monks were approached by local wine makers desperately seeking storage space for finished wine. Abbey Wine Warehouse opened in 1991 and expanded in 1994 to accommodate the growing number of customers. The wine warehouse is staffed by secular employees rather than resident monks, and today more than 120 wineries

store their wines at the bonded facility. The warehouse also offers wine labeling. A related company, housed at the Abbey, is Northwest Wines to You, which fulfills shipping orders for wineries. As for forestry, Father Richard explained that this business now focuses more on preservation and conservation than in earlier years,


(Above) Father Martinus cuts pads in the Abbey book bindery.

although harvesting and sales still take place as part of those efforts. Father Richard shared that the Abbey must earn $500,000 a year to sustain itself and care for the 28 monks who live there. This breaks down to $14,000 per person annually. Business profits provide this, as well as donations to various local charities that help the area’s needy. Father Richard asserted that the monks have adjusted their enterprises through economic shifts and technology changes, and that they will continue to adapt to preserve their


(Right) Packaged bakery goods in the Abbey bookstore.

contemplative life and their peaceful haven in the woods. Sarah Horner is a freelance writer, photographer and winemaker. Eight years of experience in the local wine industry allowed her to explore the rich culture the Willamette Valley offers. The sights, sounds and stories of the region inspire her and she enjoys sharing her discoveries with readers. Sarah lives with her husband, two teenage boys and miscellaneous pets.

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Ten Destinations to Cure the Winter Blahs Hibernating is for bears. Liven up the winter months with a few of these ideas.

1 Visit a Goose

SIX Learn and Play Together

The Spruce Goose that is, at the Evergreen Aviation and Space Museum. With a wing span as wide as a football field, kids and parents alike will marvel at Howard Hughes’ “flying boat.” There’s also a separate museum devoted to space and an IMAX theater.

The Science Factory at Alton Baker Park in Eugene features a planetarium, classroom and computer laboratory, and is a perfect place to take the family to help brighten up a winter day. A.C. Gilbert’s Discovery Village has plenty of hands-on activities and a mission to “inspire children of all ages to learn and grow through play.”


Ride a Carousel

Watch Geese Grab some binoculars, a thermos of hot chocolate and head out to one of the Valley’s three refuges, William L. Finley, Ankeny or Basket Slough, and keep an eye out for flocks of Cackling Geese, Snow Geese and the occasional Brant.

3 Eat Pie What’s more comforting that a slice of pie on a chilly winter day in the Valley? Willamette Valley Fruit Company has the perfect space to snuggle up and enjoy a variety of drinks, food and, of course, a delicious slice of pie.

FOUR Visit a Museum Winter is a great time to visit all the places you didn’t visit during the warmer, sunnier months. Museums are plentiful in the Valley and can be a great experience that the whole family can enjoy. Go online and visit for a complete listing.

7 You’ll embark on a magical trip into the past when you take a ride on one of the gorgeously painted and expertly carved animals on the Salem Riverfront Carousel in Salem, Oregon. Make sure to stop by the carver’s station where you can see craftsmen carving new designs or doing repair work on old favorites.

EIGHT Go for a Hike Umbrella, check. Galoshes, check. There’s nothing like taking a winter’s walk through any number of the beautiful hiking trails that the Valley is known for. Are you ready? Everyone hold hands and jump in the next puddle!

9 Read a Book Contrary to what you might have heard, books (even print ones) aren’t dead. Even with the demise of Borders Books, there’s still some great Valley locations to settle down for a long winter’s read. Check out your local library and book store (yes, there are still bookstores).


5 Go Swimming

This is something you should do at least once in your lifetime. Take the family to one of the nearby beaches, have a picnic in the car and watch a storm roll in off the Pacific. Breathtaking adventure to be sure.


Swimming isn’t just for summer anymore. Grab your bathing suit and spend a day splashing away the winter blues. Here’s just a sample of some great places to swim this winter: Evergreen Wings & Waves Waterpark at the Evergreen Aviation and Space Museum; Splash! sh! At Lively Park in Spring Springfield; and The Salvation Army Ray and Joan Kroc Corps Community Center in Salem, which features an indoor waterpark.

Watch a Storm


Willamette Valley Life • Winter 2013


Dine, Shop & Save!






ust minutes outside of Salem you’ll find dining and shopping destinations just waiting for you to discover! Wineries, dining, shops and businesses of every description await you in this beautiful section of the mid-Willamette Valley. Refer to this shopping guide over and over to help you find just the right business to meet any need you might have, from gift giving to pet care, education to getting your car repaired...We’ve made it easy for you to find just the right place.

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Willamette Valley Life • Winter 2013

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Winter 2013 • Willamette Valley Life



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M U S I C & E N T E R TA I N M E N T

Ty y Curtis

An Interview With One Of The Pacific Northwest’s Premier Musicians


ward-winning blues guitarist and Salem native Ty Curtis grew up listening to his parents’ blues and classic rock records, and started picking up guitar at a very young age as he listened to his dad teaching his brother to play. Curtis credits great teachers and a commitment to his art for helping him become a known guitar talent by the time he was just 18. Curtis wanted his newest album, the selftitled “Ty Curtis,” to reflect his diverse, ever-changing genre preferences. The album is filled with original tracks that cross music styles, from rock to soul, pop to jazz, blues to reggae and more, showcasing his great guitar talent and powerful vocals. Randy Hill, Willamette Valley Life publisher, recently sat down with Ty to learn more about the talented young local musician and his newest projects. RANDY HILL: Hello, Ty. Congrats on the new album. This isn’t a strictly blues album. You’ve got a little blues, a little reggae, a little funk… What made you decide to mix things up from your previous releases? TY CURTIS: I wanted to show that I have diverse tastes in all different styles of music – rock, soul, pop, jazz, blues, reggae, acoustic melodic... These are all styles that I feel I hit with this record, and are part of my ever-changing “favorite genre.” I believe that by listening to all genres you can build a more diverse palate and appreciation for [many different kinds of music]. You can learn something from anyone. RH: Why did you choose to record in Austin rather than here in the Valley? TC: I chose Austin because of the connection I had with my friend Jacob Petersen—former guitarist for Curtis Salgado and who is now guitarist for the Steve Miller Band—and my other friend, Brian Ferguson—drummer for CMT-endorsed country band Aaron Watson, and longtime friend of Jacob’s. They had the hookups with the studio, musicians…everything! It was an amazing studio experience. RH: Did you get to do any live performances in Austin while you were there? TC: My drummer, Jerry Jacques, got to jam at Maggie Mae’s with Mike Milligan and the Altar Boyz. When I was in Texas previous to the recording trip, I met Alan Haynes at [Maggie Mae’s], and also met Mark Tretola, an awesome guitar player in Austin. Mark convinced Alan to let me play his guitar, and I knew as he handed

it to me that I was getting to play one of Stevie Ray Vaughan’s guitars! Alan was a good friend of Stevie’s. It was a totally awesome moment. RH: You’ve gone through a few personnel changes with the band. What is the current lineup for live gigs? TC: Jerry Jacques on drums and vocals; Gary Fountaine, who is a former Nu Shooz bassist; Alex Shakeri, a former member of Insomniacs, on keys; and recently I added Jeremy Delauder on rhythm guitar and vocals. RH: For those of our readers who might not know your background, tell us a little about your journey. TC: I grew up listening to my parents playing blues and classic rock, and all different styles, but mostly blues. My dad would teach [guitar to] my brother and his friend, and I would sit in my bedroom and try to play guitar too. I remember picking up a Nirvana song. After that I took lessons from Salem guitarist Garry Meziere, who I was with for three and a half years, and then I took lessons from Christopher Woitach, where I learned about jazz and chords. I learned to understand what I’m playing and why it goes together. I hung out at Lefty’s on State a lot when it was kicking, and saw tons of great national acts and opened for them: Roy Rogers, Chris Cain, Paul deLay and Curtis Salgado. I also worked at Lefty’s South. RH: You were a very talented player even at 18 years old. How did you get to that level of proficiency so early in your career? What were your disciplines? TC: [I got to this level] by acting like a sponge, trying to soak up everything I could. By asking questions and jamming a lot. [I didn’t go] to parties; I practiced and challenged myself with technique and writing songs. RH: What is your process for songwriting? Do you find it fairly easy to do? TC: Sometimes I start with a chorus, sometimes I’ll get a verse or a drum beat or a single word with a cool phrasing. It could be almost anything. On this new record I’m writing about the experiences that I’ve

gone through and emotions I’ve had. RH: Who have you been listening to lately? Roy Rogers, Robert Cray, Solomon Burke, Luciano, Jah Cure, Nero and Bassnectar. RH: What is your current setup (guitar, amp, etc.)? TC: I currently have three main guitars: a Gibson 1978 ES-335, a Fender 2012 Custom Shop Strat, and a Gibson 1965 ES-125T that I use for slide guitar. RH: Are there any other musical styles that you would like to explore in the future or are you sticking with the blues? TC: Reggae, rock, country, jazz, pop, classical… I love it all! Recently I have collaborated with Portland hip hop artist Lyndon Hansen (aka Bank Sinatra) and awesome DJ Justin Downs (aka DJ Gitdown). Mixing DJ and blues funk guitar has been really fun. I will also be releasing a rock project CD that I did with my friends Will Glennie and Sean Sterns. It has 12 original songs that we recorded up at Opal Studios with Kevin Hahn [audio engineer for the Scorpions, the Portland Trail Blazers, and Lisa Mann]. I’m mostly singing on this project, but played guitar on a few tracks. It will be out soon, and will most likely be for sale on both my website and the yet-to-be-named band’s site. It’s being mixed right now, as we speak. RH: What are your plans for 2013? TC: I’m looking to stay busy and make connections, and I’m always looking to

play the next private or corporate function or festival! People can contact us on our new website, I also have about eight new songs for the next record, so I’m continuing to work on those and getting ready to record again. Quick Facts: Ty Curtis has opened for George Thorogood, Robin Trower, The Doobie Brothers, Little River Band, Chris Cain, Walter Trout, Curtis Salgado, Lloyd Jones and many more. In 2009, Curtis won second place at the International Blues Challenge in Memphis, Tennessee. • Winner, Cascade Blues Association – Best New Act, 2011 • Winner, Cascade Blues Association – Best Regional Act, 2011 • Winner, Cascade Blues Association – Best Northwest Recording, 2011 • Winner, Cascade Blues Association –The Curtis Salgado Best Male Vocalist, 2011 • Winner, Cascade Blues Association – Best Self-Produced CD, “Stubborn Mind” • Winner, Cascade Blues Association – Best Self-produced CD, “Cross That Line” • Nominated, International Blues Challenge – Best Self-Produced CD, 2008 For more info:

Winter 2013 • Willamette Valley Life






“” • Caring and friendly staff • Your comfort is our priority


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Northwest Wines to Help Forget the Rain


Sauvignon Blanc One of my favorite summer varietals is Sauvignon Blanc. The grassy, herbal qualities on the nose, ripe grapefruit flavors, and zingy, bright acidity call to mind a warm spot of sunshine. Rich aromas often waft out of the glass and sometimes hit you before you get your nose in. People worry about the “gooseberry” or “boxwood” (a polite way of saying “cat pee”) aromas, but a wellcrafted Sauvignon Blanc is unspeakably reminiscent of summer. Uncork (or unscrew) a bottle and pair it with chèvre blended with fresh herbs, or with a salad of spicy winter greens—a perfect seasonal match for this variety. Producers to look for: Andrew Rich, God King Slave, Grochau Cellars, J. Christopher, Patricia Green Cellars

Albariño Found widely around the Iberian Peninsula, this grape is not all that common in Oregon; in fact, I only know of one producer bottling it. However, this is another example of a wine that can really transport you to a different locale, and one much sunnier than Portland or Eugene. With lighter aromas and flavors than the Sauvignon Blanc, Albariño (or Alvarinho for the Portuguese variety) is a Spanish favorite, refreshing and bright. This is a wine made for shellfish or saltier fare; perhaps try Dungeness crab and oven-roasted kale chips with this wine. Producers to look for: Abacela (Author’s note: If you know of others, please email me!) Rosé (various varieties) Everyone runs around in the summer


inter is well underway, and the dark, cold and rain have taken their toll. For those of us who thrive on Vitamin D, this time of the year can throw even the most optimistic heart into a slump of seasonal depression. My response? Drink more Oregon wine. While I certainly do not advocate binge drinking or self-medicating, a change in habit may be just what it takes to cheer your dreary days. We all had our fill of rich food and robust wine during the holiday season, but perhaps some bottles from this past summer still linger in your cellar. Clear the coffers and you might come upon something reminiscent of blue skies and warm breezes. Here are a few of my favorite options for wines to slip you into a summer state of mind.

months proclaiming, “Drink pink!” And while I am no exception, it often means I buy a lot of rosé wines and then find a few bottles stashed away the following year. But since rosé is often made to be consumed at a younger age, try to find those forgotten bottles sooner rather than later. Pinot Noir, Tempranillo, Sangiovese, and Grenache grapes all make fine rosés, and all are found in Oregon. Rosé wines can vary in style, but often offer the best of both red and white wines, being brighter and lighter in body than a red while having a richer flavor than a white, sometimes with a touch of tannin. There are even a few sparkling rosé wines. Rosé pairs with just about any kind of food, from fish to filet, tempeh to turkey. Producers to look for: Abacela, Argyle Winery, Cowhorn, Colene Clemens, Kramer Vineyards, Seven of Hearts When the drizzle gets you down and the sun disappears at four o’clock, what wines take you back to warmer days? Send your favorites to Ryan Reichert is a digital marketing professional in Portland who relocated from the midwest in large part because of his passion for wine and food. He holds an Advanced certification from the Wine & Spirits Education Trust, is the Wine Ambassador for Travel Oregon, and is the managing editor for Palate Press: The online wine magazine. ryanreichert.comabout wine and to share his passion with everyone.

Winter 2013 • Willamette Valley Life



The Payoff


about an auto-equity loan to pay down your credit card debt.


or the past decade or so, many Americans have relied heavily on credit cards. Because of this, the average American household carries over $15,000 in credit card debt, according to a Federal Reserve study in May 2010. Many of you may have already heard these figures quoted before in major news publications or consumer finance blogs. The fact that Americans have a high level of unsecured debt is readily apparent. What hasn’t been mentioned nearly as often are strategies to pay down this debt. With long term interest rates at an all time low, one would think that credit card rates would be low as well. Unfortunately, that just isn’t the case. Quite the opposite, in fact, as many card issuers have raised rates to all time highs over the past 2 to 3 years. Couple the high rates with increased fees, lower limits, and in some cases having accounts closed out altogether, and consumers are feeling the squeeze all around. One strategy I have found helpful is using the equity in your vehicle to pay

down higher interest debt. Essentially, this works in one of two ways. First, if you already own your vehicle outright, grab your title and head on over to your local credit union and ask them about an auto-equity loan. Credit unions are known for their service, but also for their expertise in auto lending. Most likely they will have a program to help you consolidate your debts using the vehicle as collateral. Second, if your vehicle is already financed elsewhere, follow the steps below.

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Step 1: Check out or to determine your vehicle’s value. Step 2: Obtain a payoff on your current auto loan. Step 3: Compare the value of the vehicle to the payoff amount. If you owe more than the value of the vehicle, this strategy will not work. If you owe less than the value, proceed to step 4.

This strategy can be used on multiple vehicles and multiple times if needed. Don’t be afraid to bring in your credit card statements either. The more information the credit union knows, the more they can potentially help you. And for those with less than perfect credit, don’t be hesitant to talk about this strategy either. Using the vehicle as a backup to the loan reduces the risk to the credit union and increases the chances of getting approved even without stellar credit. Finally, once you have reduced or paid off your credit card debt, dump the big bank issuers in favor of more consumer friendly credit card programs. Check out creditcardconnection.orgg to find the best cards in your area. Ken Gardner writes for life, financial liberty and the pursuit of member happiness. He has worked in the financial industry for over 10 years and does not have perfect credit…but he’s getting there.

Step 4: Talk to your local credit union

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Willamette Valley Life • Winter 2013

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You’ll SEE… exactly what we SEE. We’ll look into your ear canal with our New MEDRX Video Ear Camera. You’ll watch the TV screen and we’ll explain to you what you’re seeing. We’ll do a complete inspection of your ear canal and your ear drum. If there is any amount of wax blockage you’ll know immediately.

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605 Commercial St. SE Salem, Oregon 97301 • 503-364-2257 • Winter 2013 • Willamette Valley Life



Eggs s as a Cure for the h Common n Blues


ertainly there are folks who feel the holidays are something to be survived, something to get through until visiting family fly back home and stores scale back their North Pole departments. Me, I adore the holidays and everything they bring: lights and fellowship, eating and conversing, music, gift-giving, and my family all together again. I tend to get a little blue when the decorations are stowed away, strangers no longer offer a friendly “Happy holidays!” in passing, the holidays are over, and we must return to our routines. Every year a group of friends and I take a long-weekend trip together in early January, to bust the post-holiday blues (for me), and to finally sit still and rest (for others) after the New Year. We don’t plan any activities for our trip. We rent a house with a hot tub and a big kitchen, and we let our whims direct us. We cook and eat big meals together, encourage naps, enthusiastically bundle up for group walks, and take in the scenery while discussing which board games to tuck into on our return.

In the mornings, the aroma of coffee drifts around the house and everyone starts to get hungry. I love cooking breakfast for our friends, and a hearty scramble—filled with smoky, bright Oregon salmon and melted cream cheese—is a simple and warming way to gather everyone around the table. I can always get behind a meal that is this delicious without any effort at all, and one that looks so pretty on the plate is even better. Whether you’re vacationing with friends, trying to beat the postholiday blues, or just hungry on a weekend morning, this breakfast will wrap you in comfort (or fortify your constitution for a long walk, if you prefer). Scramble the eggs the way you are accustomed to, or try the cold-pan method described here. This method produces rich, creamy curds of egg that your toast will beg to scoop up. Best served with hot coffee. Smoked Salmon Scramble (Serves 2) 5 eggs 1 teaspoon olive oil

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What’s for dinner tonight? W

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Willamette Valley Life • Winter 2013

4 ounces smoked salmon, flaked 2 ounces cream cheese, room temperature 2 scallions, sliced thinly Coarse salt and ground pepper

Crack the eggs into a cold stainless steel saucepan (no oil is necessary for this pan). Set over medium heat and begin stirring with a heat-proof spatula. The eggs will scramble and cook slowly. If the bottom of the pan begins to look dry, the eggs are cooking too quickly; remove from heat and continue to stir, returning to heat after a few seconds and lowering heat if necessary. Stir almost constantly until eggs are nearly set but with glistening curds, 8–12 minutes. Meanwhile, in a small non-stick skillet, heat the olive oil over medium and add flaked salmon to warm. Browning is not necessary; just remove the chill from the salmon. Before adding the salmon to the scrambled eggs, dollop the cream cheese into the skillet with the salmon and stir, warming the cream cheese but leaving some lumps intact. Add salmon mixture to scrambled eggs, season to taste with salt and pepper, and stir. Divide between two plates and top with scallion slices. Sophie Hawley grew up in the Willamette Valley and loves the abundance of locally-produced ingredients: meats and fish, produce and cheeses, wine and craft beer. A lifelong cook and food lover, she also writes and photographs a food blog featuring simple, tasty recipes for home cooks of every skill level. Read more at dinnersforwinners.


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Evergreen Manor SPACIOUS LIVING...2 bedroom, large bath units with W/D hook-up, all kitchen appliances, off street parking and garages included! Each unit has private covered deck and storage. There is also a play and picnic area. Sorry, no pets. 3100 Evergreen Ave. NE Salem, OR 97303

Parkview Manor Apartments Welcome home. Very new construction with vinyl windows and all energy efficiencies. Two bedroom, 1.5 bath townhouse units featuring 1384 sq. ft. Huge kitchens with all appliances, washer/dryer hookup, GIGANTIC master bedroom suites with TWO walk-in closets. Recessed lighting throughout, private patios and some fenced area. DISH Network ready! $199 MOVE IN (OAC), FIRST MONTH FREE W/13 MO LEASE 2 Bd - $595 • 3 Bd - $750 • 2 Bd Townhouse $695

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P R I C E S A N D AV A I L A B I L I T Y S U B J E C T T O C H A N G E - C A L L O F F I C E F O R S P E C I A L S 1423 Madelyn Ave SE

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Renting at $1,095 / $750 min deposit Water/Sewer & Landscape Included. Sorry, owner has a “no pet” policy 2 bedroom, 2.5 bath. 1,750 SF approx. Vaulted ceilings - gorgeous kitchen - contemporary colors. Garage w/opener. Kitchen appliances. Gas, central heat w/AC. Gas fireplace. Inside laundry room. Tile & oak.

Renting at $995 / $750 min deposit Small pet negotiable w/references & deposit Three bedroom, two bath. Vinyl windows. Nicely updated interior. W W/D hookup. Double garage w/opener. Carpet and laminate flooring. Wood stove. Fenced back yard.

4938 Trails End Court SE

360 Columbia St NE Unit #1

Renting at $895 / $750 refundable security deposit $35 application fee per adult Sorry, owner has a “no pet” policy. Great neighborhood! 3 bedroom, 2 bath, two car garage w/opener. Wood/fireplace. Electric central heat. Fenced rear yard. Quiet cul-de-sac. Storage shed in back.

Renting at $695 / $199 min deposit No move in fees! Sorry, no pets. $35 non-refundable app charge per adult applicant All new interior. 2 bedroom, one bath main level house. Includes full kitchen w/appliances. Fenced rear shared yard. Off street parking. 1,000 sf approx. Yard maintenance included. Special utility offer. Water/sewer/trash included. Professional landscaping provided.

2849 Church St SE

945 Hope Ave NW, Salem, OR

Renting at $895 / $750 min deposit $35 non-refundable app charge per adult applicant Sorry, owner has a “no pet” policy 3 bedroom, 1 bathroom. Approx 1,056 SF hardwood floors. Central heat system. Fenced back yard. Inside Washer/dryer room. Energy efficient windows. 1-car garage w/opener. Kitchen appliances. Includes professional landscape service.

Renting at $1,295 / $1,000 min security deposit $35 non-refundable app charge per adult Sorry, owner has a “no pet” policy 3 bedroom, 2 bath, 1,440 SF approx. Nice quiet area. 2-car garage w/opener. Storage above garage. Living room & family room. 2 back decks. New carpet/paint throughout. Wood fireplace.

Winter 2013 • Willamette Valley Life


flurries of fun for kids!

Sizzlin’ Science Festival February 18 & 23

Design Your Dream Exhibit February 17-23

Spring Break Mini-Camps March 25-29

March Egg-stravaganza Saturdays in March

Best Place to Take the Kids

Best Family Attraction

Salem’s Museum for Kids!

In Riverfront Park 503-371-3631 ��������������������116 Marion Street NE, Salem


Willamette Valley Life • Winter 2013

Willamette Valley Life Magazine  

Places to go, people to see and things to do around the Willamette Valley of Oregon.

Willamette Valley Life Magazine  

Places to go, people to see and things to do around the Willamette Valley of Oregon.