As I See It
by Mary Schamehorn
December 11, 2013
I have a lot of ideas for pictures (and a few stories) from the past, but I have to do a bit more research on when and where they were taken before I share them.
Everywhere you go in Bandon, you are greeted with thousands of Christmas lights, and the cold (make that extremely cold), crisp weather just adds to their beauty. True, It hasn't done much for our outdoor plants, but nothing lasts forever.
As I was looking through some of my old CDs, which contain photos from the past, I discovered this one of the lighthouse, which used to be lighted every Christmas. It was a job undertaken by the fire department, and I remember one year (and maybe more than once), vandals struck and tore down the lights. I am not sure why . . . or even when . . . we stopped lighting the lighthouse, but it was surely a beautiful sight.
The fire department used to decorate the lighthouse with Christmas lights
The tradition that returned this year was the lighting of the community Christmas tree, which I talked about last week. The tree came from Moore Mill (thanks to Julie's husband) and it was a beautiful specimen. I've heard that not everyone was happy about cutting down a tree of this size, but if you've driven around Southern Oregon lately, you will realize there are literally thousands more just like that left standing. I am thankful they chose to share it with the community.
The Bandon Community Christmas Cantata, "Sing with the Angels!", sponsored by the Bandon Ministerial Association, was held Friday night at the First Presbyterian Church and again on Saturday night at the Sprague Theater.
John Harding, retired Bandon School District choral teacher, was the musical director. Charlotte Pierce accompanied the choir at the piano, Tim Moore was the narrator, and Presbyterian church pastor Bobbi Neason was the producer.
Not all churches in Bandon belong to the Ministerial Association, but those who do (Faith Baptist, First Baptist, First Presbyterian, Holy Trinity Catholic, Langlois Community, Latter Day Saints, St. John's Episcopal, South Coast Assembly of God and Unity of Bandon) participated, along with the Coos Bay Assembly of God.
The 22-voice choir sang like angels . . .
* * *
Another event that a lot of us look forward to is the annual holiday party sponsored by tenants of Bandon Executive Suites (just south of the Bandon Shopping Center). One of the tenants, attorney Robin Miller, confirmed that he is in the process of purchasing the building, which is owned by C&K Market, Inc., and the estate of John McNutt.
The large portion of the building on the ground floor was formerly occupied by the Bandon VA clinic, which later moved to North Bend. The smaller portion adjacent to the former clinic is occupied by Rogue Valley Credit Union (formerly Chetco Credit Union). There are a number of offices upstairs.
Coastal Mist owners Kevin and Tara Shaw and their helpers catered the event, and, as usual, the food was "to die for." They do a wonderful job of catering, and their chocolate delicacies were definitely a big hit. Some of my friends said they had one of each.
* * *
This weekend is the Bandon Playhouse production of "Christmas in the Aire." It will be at the Sprague Theater Friday and Saturday nights, beginning at 7:30. I am not sure how she managed to do it but the producer, friend and fellow councilor Claudine Hundhausen talked Matt and I into doing the reading "'Twas The Night Before Christmas" on Friday night. I don't think either of us have ever been "on stage" before and I am not sure what to expect.
But it sounds like a great show, which features a lot of really talented people . . .
Tickets are available at Bandon True Value, Bandon Mercantile, Billy Smoothboars and at the door.
* * *
You can imagine my surprise when I read the World's article last Wednesday about the mosquito abatement planned for 2014. The first thing that caught my attention was when the reporter said that 10,000 acres had been sprayed with insecticide in and around the marsh. That, of course, definitely was not true. After the county held a community meeting to outline their proposal to spray the marsh and the surrounding area, they decided not to spray anything but the marsh (less than 400 acres) because of the huge outcry by people who were not in favor of aerial spraying.
The article also said that the county is planning to begin aerial spraying in April. I called County Commissioner and long-time friend John Sweet (who had not seen the article) and he said they plan to apply larvacide, as needed, but it most likely will not be done aerially. There are other ways to apply, including fogging and hand application. The third concern he had about the article is that it made it appear that US Fish and Wildlife Service was not fully cooperating. He said nothing could be further from the truth. He said they are 100 percent invested in taking care of the problem. At any rate, he called me the next day to say that he had talked with several people at the paper, including the reporter, and he expected there would be three corrections.
Instead, in Saturday's paper, it simply said the number of acres sprayed was incorrect . . . and that was it.
Believe me, this is an extremely sensitive subject and when anything appears in print about mosquito abatement, it needs to be correct. That's all we ask.
* * *
Those of you who read the Western World will remember that I submitted a letter to the editor a couple of weeks ago in support of City Manager Matt Winkel. In the letter I mentioned several city councilors by name, which resulted in an extremely mean-spirited letter from a neighbor of one of the councilors.
It always hurts to read things like that (which went way beyond simply replying to my letter), but I've learned to "roll with the punches," so to speak, and after 54 years in the newspaper business and a combined 30 years in Bandon politics, you would think I'd be used to it by now.
At any rate, I received an email from a city manager in the state of Washington, who reads the Western World.
He said: "As a city manager, I really appreciate your defense of Matt Winkel in your letter to the editor a couple of weeks ago. Not every mayor would do that."
I definitely appreciated his remarks . . .
* * *
I have new photo software, which puts a small black border and a large white "matt" around each picture, no matter the size that you print. The first one that came out of the printer was a real treat. I had seen pictures framed like this, but I had no idea how to do it.
I have a few large 16x20 pictures of the beach ($40 and ready to frame), as well as several hundred small 4x6 beach and lighthouse photos, framed 5x7 photos and framed 8x10 photos.
Unfortunately I do not have a shop to display them, or I am sure I would have sold quite a few of them for Christmas presents.
Each of the small 4x6 prints is individually signed, and I sell them for $2. I know a lot of my readers live outside the area, but if anyone is interested in purchasing a selection of the prints, or a small album filled with pictures of Bandon, either email me at email@example.com or call me at 541-404-7291. would be glad to send them to you.
I think you would be pleasantly surprised at the quality and how beautiful they look printed.
As I See It
by Mary Schamehorn
December 04, 2013
I am not sure why I didn't sign up long ago, but a couple of weeks ago I took three of CyberLynx's computer class/labs. The first was about Microsoft Word, taught by computer whiz Maureen Haggerty. That night I returned to the library for a two-hour lab, which essentially meant that I could scan some of my old negatives on their larger scanner. I then received help from instructor Carolyn Sorenson on how to use Photoshop Elements. Janice (the owner of Lloyd's) also joined us just to watch.
But what was even more interesting was the envelope of old negatives which I chose to scan. The outside of the envelope said: "barge squeezing under Bullards Bridge."
Oliver Olson barge heads under Bullards Bridge
It was an Oliver J. Olson Co. barge that was towed under the bridge to pick up lumber at the Rogge Lumber Co. mill, remains of which you can see on the east side of the bridge.
Barge goes under the bridge (see lumber on shore)
The size of the barge completely dwarfed the small tug. I will share a couple of those pictures for those of you who don't remember when large lumber-carrying barges went up the river as far as Rogge Mill.
The barge completely dwarfs the much smaller tug
The next day, Maureen was holding an "open lab" at the Bandon Youth Center, and another woman, Karen, and I plied her with questions. Both of us were interested in learning more about an auxiliary hard drive, and it just happened that I had mine with me, so it worked out great. We got our questions answered.
Maureen is really knowledgeable and there's not much that she doesn't know about computers.
I will definitely be signing up for more CyberLynx classes. I think this is the brainchild of Bill Russell, and it's a great service for the community.
* * *
Perfect is the best way to describe it . . .
The lighting of the community Christmas tree, at the visitor center, brought out several hundred people Saturday evening to enjoy the caroling, treats and the countdown for the lights. The weather was great and everyone was enjoying the wonderful Christmas lights which decorated Old Town and the Port of Bandon. It was neat to see so many people browsing through the shops, many of which remained open later than usual.
A huge vote of thanks goes to the Greater Bandon Association, particularly Harv Schubothe and Kevin Shaw of Coastal Mist, with lots of help from chamber vice president Peter Braun of the Cobbler's Bench, and many other merchants who volunteered their time. Santa was there in the afternoon to greet the youngsters.
A few days earlier, it was quite a sight to see people decorating the very top of the 54-foot-tall tree from the safety of a lift bucket (for want of a better name). People in Old Town stopped what they were doing when I called their attention to the two guys putting the finishing touches to the very top of the tree.
I certainly hope this becomes an annual event . . . like it was in the "old days." It definitely was a great kickoff for the "Shop Bandon" season.
* * *
I realize that when one store "does it" others feel they have to follow the lead, but for those big box stores who opened on Thanksgiving, it seemed to be all about greed to me. I suppose next they will want to remain open on Christmas Day . . . for the last-minute shopper.
Thanksgiving and Christmas are generally the only two holidays that we can count on when most businesses are closed so families can be together . . . but now we can wipe Thanksgiving off that list.
* * *
Dan Barnett, owner of Billy Smoothboars, was pretty upset (in a Facebook post) after learning that the Ocean Crest Elementary School Concert was scheduled for the same evening as their "Christmas at Billy's for the less fortunate" in Bandon. Although he blamed the school board, one member was quick to point out that the board has nothing to do with decisions like that.
At any rate, Dan did the best thing he could. Rather than change the date, his event will still be on Dec. 18, but he moved it up. They will start their giving at 4 p.m. and continue until 7. That way families can enjoy Santa and all the festivities at Billy's before their concert.
Dan said their event has been on the community calendar for a year. I understand from a former teacher that before they schedule anything, it has to go to the district office to see if it conflicts with something already scheduled on the district calendar, but apparently it does not include community events.
Dan and Lynn have worked hard and are planning for more than 100 youngsters. I know it will be a huge success just like last year.
* * *
I began driving around town late Thanksgiving afternoon trying to find a newspaper. Yes, I'm a news "junkie" and I didn't want to miss the papers, even though I wasn't sure they would be printed on Thanksgiving. At the first paper box I went to (in the pitch dark), I inserted four quarters for the Register-Guard, but nothing happened. I got my quarters back. I found a box in a more lighted area and could see that it took eight quarters, which I had. I could see a sign on the World paper box, which indicated that you had to go to the market to get a paper as the paper boxes were not equipped to sell them (you needed 12 quarters and the boxes are programmed for 75 cents daily or $1.50 for the Saturday issue but not to accept $3 worth of quarters, which was the price of the Thanksgiving ad-stuffed edition). I quickly drove to the two markets, but found them both closed, so I went without my World (I later learned that I could have gotten it at The Highway Deli, but all I saw was "markets".) The next day, when I went to Ray's, I no longer felt the urge to pay $3 for the paper because I had pretty much read the ads in the R-G . . . but from the look of it, it was even larger than The Oregonian . . . and there were a lot of them on the paper stand.
I didn't need the ads because I prefer to shop at home . . .
* * *
I learned that actor Paul Walker, who starred in the "Fast and the Furious," died in a car crash in California on Saturday at the age of 40. Apparently he had been a frequent visitor to Coos County as his brother, grandparents and cousins live in North Bend.
Walker was a passenger in a Porsche Carrera GT driven by a friend, who was a former race car driver. The accident occurred around 3:30 in the afternoon and police said speed was a factor.
His grandfather, Paul II, was raised in Coquille and returned with his family to Coos County more than 20 years ago, according to an article, which appeared in the Sentinel on Aug. 1, 2001.
* * *
The Community Thanksgiving dinner was another huge success. It is so heartwarming to see the many people who come out to enjoy the dinner and the group of selfless volunteers who help to serve, cook and cleanup. Bob and Roseanne Gates stopped long enough to have a bite of dinner . . . around 1 o'clock, and Bob mentioned that they had been at The Barn since 2:30 in the morning cooking the turkeys. Now that's real dedication . . . and they do it year after year. There are many volunteers who return year after year to help . . . and it's much appreciated by those of us who enjoy the fruits of their labor.
previous columns by mary schamehorn