Wine, food and music. They pair so well with the lengthening and warming days of late spring that, fortunately for wine lovers, wineries seem to come out of hibernation and heartily welcome us into their picturesque folds.
And here we thought guys like Superman and Captain America were champs of the greater good.
Mike Caven of Cottage Grove helps rescue people and save burning buildings, too, but he doesn’t stop there. In his spare time, this firefighter gives us craft chocolate.
Caven and his wife, Sarah, nicknamed “Bob” by their young son Adrian, opened Sanity Chocolate at 1280 E. Main St. in Cottage Grove last September.
There is a certain romance to the notion of owning a vineyard in scenic wine country. So it is fitting that husband and wife Tom and Marie Kokkeler weave some actual romance into their Territorial Highway estate and wine label, Five Fourteen Vineyards.
Salt and spice make everything nice. Or is that sugar and spice make everything nice?
The saying works both ways when mixing craft drinks using Terry McKay and Charissa Black-McKay’s rokz cocktail infusion kits and naturally flavored salt and sugar garnishes.
In a two-hour drive between Lane County’s mountains and ocean dunes, golfers will find more varied settings for nine or 18 holes than they can shake a stick at.
What pioneers loved most about the Willamette Valley, golfers get, too: lush surroundings. Many city parks lack the array of water features, green meadows, variety of trees and other flora found at most local golf courses.
Stand most anywhere on Main Street in Joseph, the historic small town in northeastern Oregon, and the Wallowa Mountains loom from southeast to northwest, some peaks pointed, others smooth, like rows of uneven teeth. At least 31 peaks in these “Oregon Alps,” including nearby Sacajawea Peak and Chief Joseph Mountain, are said to be higher than 8,000 feet, and there are ribbons of hiking trails to explore in the encompassing Eagle Cap Wilderness.
An outing to Pinard, Moon and Spirit falls in the Umpqua National Forest east of Cottage Grove is properly splendid when the spring run-off gushes.
Especially when the weather is sunny, the play of light and shadow through each of these falls, combined with the surrounding mossy forest, become a visual feast worthy of the effort involved with driving and hiking to each.
Perspectives change at the Out ’N’ About Treehouse Treesort in Takilma, 12 miles southeast of Cave Junction.
One minute guests are on the ground checking in for their overnight stays, and the next they’re stepping up spiral staircases to reach the narrow suspension bridges spanning from tree to tree, ready to navigate the stuff of fairly tales.
If you thought it was challenging to sit in the car for a seven-hour drive from Eugene-Springfield to Baker City in northeastern Oregon, imagine how difficult it was for emigrants — between 300,000 to 500,000 of them — who traveled the Oregon Trail in search of a better life in the late 1800s. The 2,000-mile journey, generally from Independence, Mo., to Oregon City, took as long as six months to complete.
Suzen Tattoozen, owner and artist at the Whiteaker Tattoo Collective, has said it best: “Everyone is happier here.”
By here she means the core Whiteaker neighborhood, just west of the Washington-Jefferson Street Bridge in Eugene and marked by Blair Boulevard until it hits Seventh Avenue like a line drawn through the sand of what makes this area uniquely Eugene.
Delights and dangers alternate at electrifying White River Falls State Park
Welcome to one of Oregon’s most awesome, secluded and deadly state parks.
Actually, by the numbers, White River Falls State Park is by far the deadliest. Between 2002 and 2012, the Oregon Parks and Recreation Department (OPRD) recorded 1.02 deaths per 100,000 visitors to the remote site — more than triple the rate of 0.29 at the next-deadliest state park, Cape Lookout on the north coast.
Marci Hansen recalls the time when her friend couldn’t keep her slip-sliding feet beneath her as they hiked a wet Virginia trail.
“We were on a long hike, and I was with a girlfriend who I had hiked with a ton. Two or three times, she just — crash! — just fell. I was like, ‘What is wrong with you?’” jokes Hansen, who now is a hike and climb coordinator for the Obsidians outdoor club in Eugene.
“She was like, ‘I didn’t have my trail shoes, all I had was my running shoes.’”
Stick to the main route, and your car stays shiny and clean on the beautiful Cascade Lakes Scenic Byway near Bend.
But for a deeper and even more majestic look at this volcanic geography of snowy peaks, alpine meadows and lava-formed lakes, you’ll need to kick up some dust. Well-marked gravel and dirt roads — some with potholes — typically lead to must-see lakes that wait just off the scenic byway.
At about 15 minutes into the Sandland Adventures giant dune buggy tour, the vastness of the Oregon Dunes National Recreation Area stares us right in the face.
We are perched atop a giant dune, just before Sandland Adventures’ owner and guide Chris Hague drives his 30 or so passengers over the edge. The beach is still at least a mile ahead. Between us and the ocean is a stretch of sand hills, stands of fir trees and endless tufts of sea grass.
In Central Oregon’s new River World theme park, pleasant riffles, rolling waves and churning rapids pour on the thrills for watersports enthusiasts.
OK, River World isn’t a real thing. Actually, it kind of is, but it’s called Bend Whitewater Park.
Tantalized by Lane County’s mountains, sparkling rivers and towering conifers, but have only enough time to whet your appetite? Good news: Outdoor recreation abounds within an easy drive from Eugene. Here are just a few popular outings for a day or long afternoon:
On a clear day in Eugene, gaze east and you may see — depending on your viewpoint — the snowy Three Sisters Mountains in the Cascade Range. A splendid, 90-minute drive from Eugene gets to the heart of these majestic peaks.
Oregon’s famous thirst for locally made craft beverages borders on unquenchable in the Eugene-Springfield area. Dozens of boutique wineries, craft breweries and distilleries make the metropolitan area and its rural surroundings a libation destination for taste tourists from near and far.
For camping, boating, hiking and mountain biking on the wilder side, consider Waldo Lake off Highway 58, just over an hour’s drive from Eugene.
Thick forests of mountain hemlock and Douglas fir surround the pristine (about like distilled water) glacial lake at 5,414 feet in elevation. But spoiler alert: within those thick forests swarm famished hordes of mosquitoes, at least until freezing nights and dryer days kill off most of the bugs around mid-August.
Get this, The Beach Boys: Oregon’s got surfin’ safaris, too.
We’re here for the one in Pacific City, where sunlight can sparkle on frigid ocean waves one day, only to be followed by sideways rain the next.
Here in a cape better known for dory fishing boats, Native American history and a Haystack Rock taller than the one at Cannon Beach.
But come on a safari they do, scores of wetsuited surfers, from kids to seniors, for the annual Cape Kiwanda Longboard Classic held one weekend each mid-September.
Ha-ha, we all know this one: two teens on lover’s lane; radio announcer reports escaped serial killer with a hook for his hand; panicked teens race for home; find killer’s hook hand hanging from car’s door handle.
Tell this urban legend around a crackling campfire in the woods, and it works every time.
For regulars who walk the trails at Mount Pisgah Arboretum, natural beauties are everywhere no matter which season, but late May is prime time for wildflowers.
With fields full of blooms and the Patricia Baker Wildflower Garden in its glory, the arboretum’s Wildflower & Music Festival is ready to shine from 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. Sunday, May 20.
Offering a fun-to-explore stretch of seasonal flatwater that flows north into Fern Ridge Lake, Coyote Creek is one of the most accessible and rewarding waterways available to canoeists and kayakers who don’t want to drive far from Eugene.
One of two permanent streams feeding the manmade reservoir — the Long Tom River is the other — Coyote Creek also is something of an unknown gem, perhaps because of the cyclical flood-control transformations that make it usable for only part of the year.
Who says building sandcastles is only for kids?
True, just as tides consume sandcastles, years eventually wash away most adults’ zest for pressing sand into molds, digging little moats, hauling buckets of water from the surf and scouring the shore for architectural accents of wood, shell and rock.
But during the annual Cannon Beach Sandcastle Contest, all ages come to play.
Sunday felt like 1996 all over again for Kate Landau, who’s in her second act as a runner and once again finding success at Hayward Field.
Landau was the women’s Eugene Marathon winner in a 2020 Olympic Marathon Trials qualifying time of 2 hours, 35 minutes, 44 seconds, crossing the finish line inside the historic track and field stadium with one last burst of speed.
Ray Soderman had not gotten a hit in 10 days, so George Horton considered sending up a pinch-hitter with the winning run on second base in the bottom of the 10th inning
He thought better of it, though, sticking with his starting catcher.
“Nobody works harder on our team than Ray, and I’m kind of corny when it comes to that,” Horton explained. “I think the game rewards guys who work hard.”
Jay Bozievich prides himself on fiscal discipline.
The Lane County commissioner says helping balance the county’s budget and improving its bond rating are among his biggest accomplishments in two terms on the board.
But Nora Kent, an instructor in Lane Community College’s Florence-based Adult Basic and Secondary Education program, thinks that attention to fiscal restraint has come at the cost of health care and other services for rural Lane County residents.
Northwest Christian University in Eugene is being sued for $750,000 by an African-American instructor who asserts that the university long has been unfriendly to minorities and wrongly fired him in December while he was on medical leave because of work-related stress.
Pinning on their race numbers and lacing up their running shoes, a sea of people hit the brisk Sunday morning air — and run they did.
Participating in the 12th annual Eugene Marathon, nearly 4,000 participants ran 26.2 or 13.1 miles through the streets and paths of Eugene and Springfield on Sunday, according to marathon charity and event organizer Justin Hanes.
In the curious case of Tyrell Crosby, revenge is a dish best served with cold pancakes.
Crosby, the winner of the Morris Trophy awarded to the Pac-12 offensive lineman of the year, as voted on by opposing defensive linemen, watched 11 other offensive tackles get drafted during his surprising slide into the fifth round of the NFL draft on Saturday.
Finally, the agonizing wait ended when the Detroit Lions scooped up the four-year Oregon starter with the 153rd overall pick.
A decade ago, English ivy and Himalayan blackberry overran the natural portion of a small park in Santa Clara.
The invasive plants were so thick visitors couldn’t see Spring Creek as it wound through the 6 acres of Awbrey Park off River Road. So Brandi Crawford Ferguson, who lives near Awbrey Park, set out to remove non-native plants, and replace them with native ones and wildflowers. This time of year the park is in full bloom.
Oregon delayed the start of Saturday’s game by two hours, trying to avoid bad weather, but Kenyon Yovan still ran out to the mound under heavy rain.
He’s used to that.
“Just like every high school start,” the graduate of Westview High School in Beaverton said after striking out 15 without walking a batter in Oregon’s 9-2 victory over USC in front of 1,306 at PK Park.
Lane County’s lawsuit, officially known as a “quiet title action,” was filed in March. It’s the third legal maneuver by public officials to clear up the legal uncertainty surrounding the Skinners’ intent for donating the land to the county in the 1850s.
Eugene and Mary Skinner donated 40 acres of their original land claim to Lane County to help establish Eugene as the county seat, which included the siting of a county courthouse.
A few candidates have emerged as presumed front-runners in the race for the Republican gubernatorial nomination.
But the slate of hopefuls remains crowded. Republican voters participating in the May 15 primary election will have 10 names to choose from on the ballot.
Imagine for a moment being pulled into a lawsuit for a deal struck by an ancestor who died 154 years ago.
Dozens of descendants of Eugene and Mary Skinner — Eugene’s founders — are in this bizarre situation because the city and Lane County want to build a new City Hall and county courthouse downtown.
The Skinners’ descendants, living in Eugene and elsewhere, are pivotal players in a lawsuit meant to clarify if the local governments’ proposed land swap to accommodate the buildings is legal.
Oregon State Police are investigating who may have shot arrows into deer, leaving the animals alive and with the projectiles protruding from them in Southern Oregon.
On Friday, Central Point Fish and Wildlife troopers were called to the Shady Cove area to investigate a live deer that had been shot with an arrow that was still stuck in the animal, OSP Sgt. Kaipo Raiser said in a Saturday press release.
SPRINGFIELD — Police arrested a 50-year-old Marcola woman on Friday in connection with the recent robberies of Pacific Cascade Federal Credit Union and Ashley’s Deli.
Lori Anne Moseley was charged with two counts of first-degree robbery and two counts of unlawful use of a weapon and was taken to Lane County Jail, Springfield Sgt. David Lewis said in a Saturday evening press release.
As great as John Elway was, the legendary quarterback didn’t win a Super Bowl until the end of his Hall of Fame career when Terrell Davis joined him in the Denver Broncos backfield.
After cutting starter CJ Anderson earlier this month to free up some salary cap space, Elway said he was in the market for another “bell cow” running back.
Royce Freeman rang that bell.
Oregon’s all-time leading rusher was selected by the Broncos in the third round of the NFL draft on Friday night.
It was as if we’d slipped on green-colored glasses.
Everything, it seemed — from trailside rises and shelves of rock to the coursing aquamarine river water and towering Douglas firs — was viridescent with that manic, shiny energy of spring along Brice Creek Trail in the Umpqua National Forest.
Two Cottage Grove residents were arrested in Newport early Wednesday morning after drugs and weapons were found in their vehicle during a routine traffic stop, according to the Lincoln County Sheriff.
Destiny Rose Honer, 21, and Marcus Anthony West, 23, were pulled over at 1:20 a.m. for an alleged minor traffic violation by two sheriff’s deputies in the Walmart parking lot on Highway 101 and Northeast 25th Street, according to deputies.
CORVALLIS — Oregon got victories from Sabrina Southerland and Blake Haney on Friday night during the OSU High Performance track and field meet’s Distance Carnival.
But it was Erin Clark who made the biggest statement.
In her first women’s 3,000-meter steeplechase since the 2016 U.S. Olympic Track & Field Trials, the Colorado senior and South Eugene High grad won in 10 minutes, 4.37 seconds.
After a long professional running career that included two trips to the Olympics, six U.S. 800-meter titles, a world championships silver medal and a starring role in one of Hayward Field’s most iconic moments, Nick Symmonds now appears to be just like one of us.
He’s a 34-year-old businessman with a bum knee and too many hours in his work week to properly train for his next community road race.
The benches cleared in the first inning and both Oregon and USC got angry after a few batters were hit by pitches later in the game.
The Ducks were upset with the Trojans, but also with their own response to the tension after USC left PK Park with a 10-2 victory in a Pac-12 baseball game on Friday.
“You want to be able to come back and show them what we’re all about on the field, and we didn’t do a good job of that,” Oregon outfielder Jakob Goldfarb said.
A gray pit bull named Daisy is recovering from stab wounds at a local animal shelter and will soon be available for adoption.
Daisy was found on the afternoon of April 12 near the Welcome Inn, 1410 W. Sixth Ave., according to Eugene police.
She was wearing a leash when she trotted across the street to a nearby business owner who had spotted her outside the hotel. A passing motorist stopped and helped grab the wandering dog’s leash, police said.
Hate-filled graffiti was found on a public building in west Eugene on Wednesday, two days after the City Council voted to rename it after a leader of the black community.
The council on Monday elected to name the building — known as the Westmoreland Community Center on West 22nd Avenue — after Edwin Coleman Jr., a social justice champion who died at age 84 last year. Coleman taught African-American literature and poetry at the University of Oregon for 33 years.
A Lane County jury on Friday convicted a woman of murder in the January 2017 shooting death of Joshua Ty Turnage in Alton Baker Park.
Lacy Lyons, 35, of Eugene will return to Lane County Circuit Court for sentencing on Tuesday.
Jurors heard evidence in her trial over the past week and listened to attorneys’ closing arguments in the case on Thursday before beginning deliberations. Those discussions continued Friday, and the verdict was announced shortly before 3 p.m.
SPRINGFIELD — A convicted felon, who allegedly cut off his ankle monitor sometime last weekend and stashed it in the bushes outside of the Springfield Justice Center, has been captured.
Kevin Trego Triplett, 34, of Springfield was given supervised release from the Lane County Jail with an ankle monitor on April 18 while awaiting his Lane County Circuit Court trial for a charge of felon in possession of a firearm.
There’s two weeks to go before the Pac-12 Track & Field Championship meet at Stanford and even less until next week’s final regular season meet when the Ducks host the Oregon Twilight at Hayward Field.
With that in mind, Oregon is splitting its squad this weekend between the OSU High Performance meet Friday and Saturday in Corvallis, and Saturday’s Desert Heat Classic in Tuscon, Ariz., for what coach Robert Johnson described as some “sharpening and tuning.”
The second-ranked Oregon softball team wants to take care of some unfinished business in Oklahoma City at the end of the season.
In the meantime, the Ducks (38-7, 12-3) will get another shot at redemption against one of the two teams they lost to at last year’s Women’s College World Series.
Oregon will begin a three-game series at No. 4 Washington on Friday night (5 p.m., no television).
Matt Mercer had eight days to dissect his worst start of the season.
“As a starting pitcher you only go out once a week, so it’s like football, I’m kind of a loser for the whole week,” said the Oregon right-hander who allowed five earned runs in five innings during Thursday’s 5-2 loss at Oregon State. “I had a bad feeling about that start this whole week so I’m excited to get back out there and redeem myself.”
University of Oregon linebacker Fotu Leiato was arrested for allegedly removing a parking boot from a vehicle.
Leiato, 21, was arrested by University of Oregon police at 6:30 p.m. Wednesday at his residence on South Garden Way.
He was booked into the Lane County Jail on charges of second-degree criminal mischief and second-degree theft for damaging and removing the parking boot, University of Oregon police spokesman Kelly McIver said.