As I See It
by Mary Schamehorn
July 29, 2015
The first picture I am sharing this week is the repair of what was termed "the street dock" on the outside of the envelope containing the negatives. The picture was taken in July of 1956 and appears to be the walkway leading out to the end of the dock at the end of Chicago ... in the vicinity of the High Dock Building (where the Loft restaurant and Butler's charter boat office are now located). In the background you can see the Port of Bandon's large tug, which was a fixture in the harbor for many years.
Bandon Street Dock, 1956
Bandon celebrated Oregon's 100th birthday (1959) in a big way with lots of activities in the street, including this street dance in June in front of Erdman's City Market, the first Lloyd's Cafe, the Pastime Tavern and Ray's Pharmacy. Lloyd's owners later purchased the old Erdman's building and occupied both spaces for years, before closing over a year ago. I can see Daisy and Roy Mallory facing the camera at right, and behind them are Norma and Sterling Welch. The girl going under the arch at left looks a lot like Jerene Albertson (and maybe Gary Johnson), but I'm not sure.
Celebrating Bandon's 100th birthday, 1959
The third picture, probably taken the same night, features the winners of the period costumes, including, from left, Bill and Nellie Biggar, Audrey Iddings (Sandi's beautiful mother) and Harvey Calame. Not sure where this was taken as I don't recognize all the windows and the wood floors. It could have been the old VFW Hall as I know lots of events were held there.
Celebrating Bandon's 100th birthday, 1959
* * *
While going through some old papers, I found a copy of a partial page of a January 1917 paper from the Western World. I had copied it because it contained the birth announcement for my mother, Martha Virginia Felsheim, who died two years ago at the age of 96.
Several of the small items were noteworthy: "Miss Chloe Buell of Myrtle Point was a guest at the Hotel Bandon several days ago en route to Gold Beach." That's a trip that now takes just over an hour and a half.
Here's another tidbit: "Cleve McAllister, with Sidwell's, has been quite sick with the lagrippe the past two weeks, for a large part of the time unable to be at the store." I can still remember people saying they had the "grippe," but never heard it referred to as "lagrippe." I think now we just call it the flu.
"Coming -- to the Grand theatre soon, 'The Ne'er Do Wells' in 12 reels. Watch for the date."
"The person who lost a valuable Masonic emblem on one of the local docks recently may have the same by applying at the Western World office."
"Max Timmerman of Marshfield made another visit to the local shipyard this week to look the plant over. He is said to be an efficient man and it may be that he will work up some proposition whereby he can get the plant in operation."
I love to read those old tidbits . . . to get a feel what life was like back then.
* * *
The more I read about problems at the Coos County jail, the more concerned I get. Even 98 beds were not enough, and now the sheriff has announced that they will be reducing the number of beds to 47 because he can't find people who want to be jailers. I could understand if this were a funding problem, but according to quotes recently in the paper and on KCBY, that is not the problem. It's apparently hard to train and keep people.
I have asked either Chief Bob Webb or Sgt. Larry Lynch to attend the Aug. 3 city council meeting to let us know how this will impact Bandon, and what, if anything, we can do about it.
Maybe we should ask Sheriff Craig Zanni and his son, Eric, who is the human resource officer for the sheriff's office, to attend the council meeting, along with our officers, to hear first-hand what the problems are, what it will take to adequately staff the jail, and if there is anything we can do to help.
This is a serious quality-of-life issue . . .
* * *
Only an animal lover will understand what it's like to lose a precious cat ... and in this case, Catman wasn't even mine, but he belonged to my sister who lives a block away. At any rate, although he always slept inside the house and spent a lot of time indoors, he also loved to be outdoors. Last week, my sister started seeing a lot of strange cats around and learned that someone had apparently moved out of the neighborhood and left at least two, and possibly three, cats behind. And they had pretty much adopted her.
But last Friday, Catman and two black and white cats left ... and while the others returned, Catman did not. Or at least they have been spotted a couple of times since then, but are not in the yard like they were for a few days.
He is a neutered male, gray-striped tabby, and if he has adopted someone in the neighborhood of the hospital on 11th street, or if anyone knows what might have happened to him, I am offering a sizeable reward. Our friend and "dog sitter' Karen Rose has put up posters around town with his picture, and I know one is at Price 'n Pride, so if you have a stray cat at your house, and he matches the description, please call me at 541-404-7291.
He's been gone just over a week now, so our hope of finding him is pretty slim, but I can't help but try . . .
* * *
I found a wonderful old graduation picture among my collection, but the only identifying marks on it are "B.H.S. Class of '97." That is, of course, 1897, and since there are no yearbooks that old or bound volumes of the Western World, I am not sure I will ever find out who is in the picture. But in case one of them may be related to someone who reads my column, I'd love any information about the Bandon High School Class of 1897.
Bandon High School Class of 1897
I did refer to Emil Peterson and Alfred Powers' book, "A Century of Coos and Curry," and determined that School District 54 (Bandon) built its first "big school" in 1886. At that time the population of Bandon was about 645 people, which accounts for the fact that there were 10 graduates (5 women and 5 men).
Although Bandon was incorporated as a city in 1891, Peterson and Powers say that "Bandon came into prominence between 1905 and 1910 when the river was lined with five sawmills and one or two shipyards."
Along with the picture of the graduates, which came from a copy negative dated November 1957, was a picture of the Bandon High School champion women's basketball team, dated 1910. Again I don't know who is in the picture, but we may be able to track down that information from the museum files.
* * *
I've been asked to become a member of the museum's board of directors, which should be fun. They are doing a great job of preserving and documenting Bandon's history, and it will be great to be part of that effort. I am sometimes amazed at how many people I can recognize in the 40- and 50-year-old photos, but the fact that I worked at the Western World on and off for nearly five decades (and took many of the pictures) probably has something to do with it.
Most of the envelopes that contain the negatives that Jim Proehl (at the museum) and I are downloading are dated, which makes it much easier to identify people. When there is no date, we pretty much have to guess, particularly if there are no people in the photos.
* * *
I was saddened to learn of the death of Bill Burgher, who lived in Coos Bay near his son and wife, Bill Jr. and Corliss. Bill was 90. The death notice was in the World, but he was identified as Joseph W. Burgher, so you may not have realized that it was Bill.
Bill Burgher, left
I first knew him when he played baseball for the Bandon Millers back in the early '50s, and he (and little Bill Jr.) are on the cover of Saturday Night Heroes, a book compiled by the late Bob Sutherland titled "a browser's guide to the Bandon Millers Baseball Team of the old 'Sawdust Circuit.' "
The team picture in Sutherland's book was taken in June of 1952, and also included long-time educator Bob Stolz and business manager Rudy Backlund, who was a former Bandon mayor. Pete Goodbrod is pictured in the book with the 1950 Millers team.
Bill also umpired many of Bandon's high school baseball games over the years (as did Pete). He and his late wife, Elaine, lived here for many years, with both Bill Jr. and his sister, Marylou, attending school here.
I understand the family is planning a private service.
* * *
I love the fact that our Community Center/City Park complex is multi-use and often several things are going on there at the same time. But in this case, it might not be the best mix.
An afternoon of Music in the Park is scheduled for Sunday, Aug. 23, from 1 to 5 p.m. and features several great bands. Unfortunately the stage is pretty much across the parking lot from the Sprague Theater, where a showing of Spitfire Grill is scheduled for 2 p.m.
Not sure just how soundproof the theater is, but they might want to reschedule that show to 5 o'clock because my guess is that some of the great sounds from the stage may well drift into the theater ... and might not go well with the Spitfire Grill.
I mentioned it to one of the cast members so maybe she will pass the word onto the decision-makers.
As I See It
by Mary Schamehorn
July 22, 2015
I have chosen an old picture of the First National Bank building (commonly referred to now as the Masonic building) because it has recently been listed on the National Register of Historic Places.
First National Bank Building
It was previously designated as an Oregon State Historic Preservation building, but has now received federal designation. Peter Braun, city councilor and head of Bandon Lodge #130, Ancient Free & Accepted Masons, was notified last week by the Oregon Parks and Recreation Department about the latest designation. I am not sure when this picture was taken but it was in the BHS yearbook for 1957 and was pictured, along with several others, under the slogan: "Fifty Years of Progress." At any rate, you can see the sign for Western World, which was located where The Cobbler's Bench is now, and on the east side was the First National Bank, where Spirit of Oregon is now. Upstairs was an Attorney At Law office. I started my newspaper career at Western World in 1959 and worked there until the mid '60s when we moved up on the hill to the building which is now part of Price n' Pride.
The second picture was taken during the Cranberry Festival of 1956. Father Peter Dally, who was the priest at St. John's Episcopal Church, is handing out medallions to a group of boys, including Donny Goddard (in the Bandon Tigers sweatshirt) and next to him is Steve McCue. Those are the only ones I can positively identify.
1956 Cranberry Festival
The third picture shows Gail Sprague holding up a sign which says: "Bandon Playhouse, A Theatrical Collection of Contemporary Bards." This photo was taken in front of Western World nearly 40 years ago, in August of 1976, and heralded the formation of the long-running theater group, which has brought so much quality theater to Bandon ... on stages at Ocean Crest School, Harbor Hall and now the Sprague Theater.
Gail Sprague, 1976
* * *
I so admire all those people who took part in Bandon's first annual Relay for Life over the weekend. Saturday was sunny and beautiful, but once the fog came in it got pretty damp overnight, but my guess is it did not do anything to dampen the spirits of so many people who turned out to strike a blow at cancer.
Two women who definitely need a huge vote of thanks for organizing this event are Sarah Lakey and Nancy Fitch-Noel. They volunteered hundreds of hours of their time, along with many others, to make sure this event was a success.
* * *
I guess it's all comparative, but I was struck by the difference between a story and the headline about the Fourth of July in Brookings. To my knowledge, although there were hundreds of people in Bandon for the fireworks display, I have not heard of anyone being injured.
After reading the headline on the Curry Coastal Pilot, "Few injuries reported during Fourth festivities," I figured it was pretty much the same in that southern Curry County community.
But I was wrong. The article goes on to say: "Just as the official fireworks began, an illegal and errant mortar careered (I think the writer meant careened) into the crowd on the beach, striking a woman and giving her a concussion before ricocheting into a 4-year-old girl, whose clothes caught fire and who was peppered with second-degree burns." The two were taken to the hospital for observation.
But that wasn't all: "Meanwhile, a 29-year-old man was injured in the city of Brookings, and another lost a few fingers when he ignited an illegal firework on Whaleshead Beach."
Just another Fourth of July in Brookings . . .ho hum.
* * *
With the lack of good jobs in this county, it is hard to understand why the staffing at the Coos County Jail has become a big issue. An article on, I think, the KCBY website said operations at the jail finds the staff spread thin because of five open positions, a few officers in training and one out after being injured by an inmate.
An understaffed facility could mean changes for the jail, including temporarily going from 98 to just 49 beds.
But here's the kicker: it is not a funding issue. Sheriff Craig Zanni said "It's just finding people that are willing to come and do the work." New workers have to go through 10 to 12 weeks of training.
The 98 beds are usually full, so if the reduction occurs, "the sheriff's office will have to fine tune its criteria to determine if a criminal will be held or released," said Zanni.
"It may mean that people are serving shorter sentences, but there's nothing we can do about that. You know it's bad for the community. We all know that."
It would certainly be interesting to know why people do not apply for these jobs ... when the funding and the positions are available.
This does not bode well for the criminal justice system in Coos County if that problem is not remedied. This affects all cities in Coos County who do not have their own jails.
Since the county is required by law to run and maintain a jail, along with civil service and search and rescue, maybe someone needs to look at the staffing levels of patrol deputies and detectives.
* * *
One of my former counterparts, former Gold Beach Mayor and long-time Curry County Commissioner Marlyn Schafer was sentenced to 20 days under house arrest, two years probation and fined $4,000 after a jury found her guilty of first-degree forgery, second-degree forgery, first-degree and second-degree theft and computer crime.
Schafer, who served as the treasurer of the Gold Beach Senior Center for six years, stole thousands of dollars from the organization by falsifying computer information and making checks out to herself, according to the article in the Pilot.
The light sentence was based on the 71-year-old Schaefer's poor health. She was indicted by a grand jury a year ago for aggravated theft . . . over $10,000.
This is not the first time Marlyn had made the headlines. She made front-page news in Curry County papers a few years ago, while a sitting county commissioner, for an alcohol issue. And her daughter was married to Scott Punch, the Oregon State Policeman in Gold Beach, who committed suicide several years ago in the family home.
At the time of her indictment, she was secretary/treasurer of the Curry Health District, but has since resigned her position. She also resigned as a member of the board of the Curry County RSVP program.
I think it's safe to say her days of public service are over ....
* * *
I continue to be shocked by some of the things that people post on "social" media . . . not only anonymously but under their own name.
A case in point was vividly described in an editorial in Saturday's World, written by editor Larry Campbell (who lives in Bandon), titled "When fair comment becomes base bullying."
Larry calls attention to a message posted earlier in the week to the World's education reporter, Chelsea Davis, which he found disturbing. Chelsea has been doing a superb job of reporting on the troubles in the Coos Bay School District. In the last several months, a number of complaints have been filed against the superintendent, Dawn Granger, ranging from the high school principal, the teachers' union, parents and students.
"Monday, on Ms. Davis' professional (and public) Facebook page, a man named Scott Granger criticized stories Ms. Davis has written about his wife, Coos Bay school superintendent Dawn Granger.
"Fair comment is one thing. But on Monday, one of Mr. Granger's comments crossed a line. Among other things, he wrote to Ms. Davis: 'I personally think you're a hack who hasn't been laid in a few years.' The comment is misogynistic. It is venom-spewing at its most base. It is cyber bullying. and it's there for the world to see."
Earlier, back in May, he had posted other critical messages, including calling her a moron.
Larry ends the editorial by saying: "And we can't help thinking how it reflects on the leader of Coos Bay schools, the person who represents a district that prides itself on combating bullying of all kinds."
A Google search determined that he is a "Captain/Flight Safety Investigator at Comair Inc."
Several months ago, the popular high school principal Doug Holland resigned, saying that "the tipping point for me was my inability to be effective with this superintendent."
Everyone is waiting to see what the school board will do . . . if anything.
* * *
It was announced last week that The City of Bandon and the Greater Bandon Association will be presenting a free concert in City Park on Sunday, Aug. 23, from 1 to 5. The concert will take place on the new stage starring Big Creek Rendezvous (classic country and old time rock), with The Bottom Rung (bluegrass Americana) and Kenny, Bob & Rob (folk music with a country flavor).
People are urged to pack a lunch and bring the whole family out for an afternoon of fun.
* * *
The question of whether to allow marijuana dispensaries outside city limits in Douglas County will go the voters in the Nov. 16, 2016, election. The Douglas County Commissioners passed two ordinances that will put the dispensaries on the ballot next year.
One ordinance prohibits selling recreational marijuana in medical marijuana dispensaries; the other bans the growing and processing of marijuana for retail or wholesale outside city limits.
One of the commissioners, Chris Boice, said "What it won't affect is people's ability to use marijuana as they choose; it won't affect people's ability to have access to medical marijuana however they've accessed it up to this point," he said.
* * *
My sisters and I were headed to Sixes Saturday to go swimming and celebrate sister Molly's birthday. None of us routinely eat cured meats, but we decided to celebrate, so we stopped at the Langlois Market, which is famous for their hot dogs with home-made mustard.
We had to fight our way through the crowd (believe me, people were everywhere), to purchase our hot dogs, and it was well worth the stop. The weather was great and people were sitting on picnic tables in a park-like setting and on benches under hanging baskets of flowers in front of the building . . . enjoying whatever treat they had purchased from the popular market.
And we stopped again on our way back to buy some cherries . . . and they were still just as busy . . .
As I See It
by Mary Schamehorn
July 15, 2015
I always love to find the old pictures of past Cranberry Festival parades, not so much for the entries but for the street scenes. This picture was taken in 1972 as the parade wound its way (against the arrow) east on Second Street in front of The Senter Agency (now the Toy Store), Boone's Hardware (now Bandon Card & Gift), The Pastime Tavern (now Sweets & Treats), Lloyd's Cafe (now shuttered) and across Baltimore Avenue, Dave's TV and Radio Shack (same family today) and the Edgewater Dept. Store (formerly The Golden Rule and now the Continuum Center).
1972 Cranberry Festival parade
Some of the parade pictures actually show the parade heading west on this street, so not sure when or why they changed direction.
The second picture features the Harbor Lights wrestling team, coached by Mike Easterly, some time in the early to mid-'70s. I can only identify a few of the boys. At back left is Kevin Kent; in the second row, it may be Ron Kranick, Knox Campbell, Boyd Nowlin and Jim Pruitt. The only one I can ID in the front row is second from right: Bill Caldwell.
Harbor Lights wrestling team, 1970s
In the old days, various churches, as well as Peggie Briggs' Ocean Crest class, always visited the Ocean View Care Center at Christmastime. This picture was taken in 1975. Although I can't identify any of the little dancers, behind them at the piano I see Susan Kemp, Madeline Klewitz and George Dominy.
Ocean View Care Center at Christmastime, 1975
I'm always torn about which pictures to share because I know that a lot of newcomers to Bandon read my column each week and the people pictures won't mean much to them, but there are a lot of former (and present) residents who will remember the people, and they enjoy seeing them.
* * *
It was sad to see Moxie Black close her new business, Captain Black's, (formerly McFarlin's) in the Harbor Town Events Center on the corner of Second and Chicago. That is the second long-time eatery/lounge to go down in Old Town, with the first being Lloyd's, which has not been open in quite a few months.
Captain Black's/McFarlin's, of course, doesn't have the history that Lloyd's does. Dating back many years when Mel Dahl and his family owned Lloyd's, and even before that, it was a mainstay in downtown Bandon/Old Town, and it is such a shame to see an anchor tenant like that remain dark.
The weeds along Baltimore Avenue, on the west side of the building, were several feet high, and intermingled with paper and old bottles, it didn't present a very good image for people walking down that street. Thankfully, they took care of it before the Fourth of July holiday.
I surely hope the Davises can find someone to either lease Lloyd's or buy it. It hurts everyone to have businesses close in the heart of town, and I know it could be a "going concern" again.
* * *
It was good news to hear that the popular show "Always Patsy Cline" is returning to the stage at the Sprague Theater in October. I am not sure of the exact date, but I do know that Shirley Kintner will be Patsy and Pam deJong will have the role of Louise, with Jeff Norris as the producer.
This is a wonderful show, and if you loved Patsy Cline, you will want to hear Shirley's rendition of her popular songs.
* * *
A big headline in the Salem Statesman-Journal last week read: "Letter to Swegle Elementary parents was sent 'in error.'
"The tone of the letter sent to parents of Swegle Elementary School students about the upcoming school year struck a nerve for some parents."
That is an understatement. I am sure the letter offended all of the parents.
It advised the parents that if they did not pick up their children promptly, they would be reported to authorities.
Here is what the letter said, in part: "Children must be picked up on time. If they are not picked up on time, we will call DHS (Department of Human Services) and you will then have to pick them up at court the next day." It also added that if children were dropped off before 7:40 a.m., the staff will call the authorities.
A spokesman for the school district said the letter was written by an "office level employee," and had not been reviewed by the principal.
Talk about striking fear in the hearts of parents by threatening to turn their kids over to DHS ... this letter most certainly did that.
The spokesman added; "Any grain of truth to that is in an extreme case, like if parents are habitually not picking their kids up. Even then, those actions (described in the letter) would not be taken."
I would be curious if that employee still has his or her job . . .
* * *
I often print out the statistics sheet from Governing Magazine, which I read on line as well as the printed version.
Here are a few of the latest ... $4,000: Amount Montgomery County, Pa., will spend to replace 26 signs that spelled the word commissioners with only one "m."
$18 million: Amount New York City has spent removing wet wipes from its sewer system since 2010.
1 in 11: Portion of Wisconsin doctors who fail to meet the state's requirement of 30 hours of continuing medical education every two years, which is the nation's lowest requirement.
53%: Portion of Houston's 2015 valedictorians who began school as English-language learners.
$98 million: Approximate amount Tennessee wrongly paid out in unemployment claims ... to prisoners, dead people and state employees, among others ... over the past six years.
13.5 %: The decline in water usage in California from April 2013 to April 2015, the month the governor ordered residents to cut their usage by 25 percent.
$346: Average price for an ounce of marijuana in Washington, D.C. That's slightly above the $324 national average, even though pot is generally cheapest in states where it is legal.
31 million: The number of people, which has doubled since 2003, who have health insurance but are paying so much for deductibles and out-of-pocket expenses that they're considered underinsured.
* * *
Bandon has had its share of festivals over the years ... think Irish Festival, Stormwatchers Wine and Seafood, etc., but how many of you remember the Festival of the Phoenix.
This was the brainchild of the late Ruth Harrison, and was held April 8-10, 1983.
The spring celebration resulted "from the joint efforts of many tireless people and grew from a 1982 study, which identified specific needs in Bandon to encourage economic growth.
"They determined that Bandon had a unique situation which could draw people to the area. A new boat basin was under construction; the old town along the harbor was undergoing renovation. There would be the dedication of the Coast Guard Building, which will house the Historical Museum, and the dedication of the Wildlife Sanctuary, which includes 290 acres. All of these would draw tourism to Bandon.
"In the past, Bandon had suffered three major fires that had an adverse effect on the community. In each case the people rallied their efforts and built out of the ashes. It brought to mind the 'Phoenix,' a mythological bird which rose again from the ashes."
The restaurant guide in the back of the brochure featured: Andrea's Old Town Cafe (now Foley's), Eat'n Station Restaurant, Bandon Boatworks(now closed), Fraser's Restaurant & Lounge (now Asian Garden), Christopher's Great Food and Dancing (now the Bandon Museum), Lloyd's Restaurant & Lounge (now closed), DaLonna's (now Billy Smoothboars), and The Minute Cafe, which has been in the same location for many, many years.
As I See It
by Mary Schamehorn
July 08, 2015
This week's old pictures will feature more people than places, but I know a lot of the locals will remember them.
The first picture shows Harvey Construction, which was just one of many businesses to occupy the old city jail. This was taken in the early to mid-'70s, and you can see the Old City Hall Fish & Chips place in the old city hall ... now the home of Bandon's museum. A jewelry business was the last to occupy the old jail.
Old city jail, 1970s
The second photo is the 1971-72 BHS basketball team, which finished third in the state that year after capturing the league crown. From left are Stan Goodell, Jon Hecht, Tom Fraser, Steve Clausen, Mike MacDonald, Del Ash, Bayard Forrest (all-state center), Bruce Capps, Gordy Groshong, Dave Clausen, Frank Moore and Wayne Stolz. The Tigers were coached by Butch Neff.
1971-72 BHS basketball team
The third picture is one of Bandon's most beloved figures, Melvin Boak, who played Santa for the Bandon Lions for many years when youngsters gathered beneath the Bandon Theater marquee to visit Santa and receive their treats. Melvin was better known as the long-time owner of McNair Hardware, a forever member of the Lions club, the hospital board and a long-time Bandon planning commissioner. But the little ones knew him only as "Santa."
Melvin Boak, 1979
* * *
Talk about lucky. After way too many days of strong winds and sometimes foggy weather, the Fourth of July turned out to be a gorgeous day as hundreds of people gathered here to watch the parade, eat hot dogs and hamburgers in City Park, watch the first annual cardboard boat races at the port dock (won by our own city councilor/Bandon businessman Peter Braun), visit the shops during the Greater Bandon Association's Alive After Five wine walk and watch the grand finale to the perfect day: the gorgeous display of fireworks shot off by Bandon Fire Department members across the river. To say the town was crowded would be an understatement. I was sorry I didn't get to ride in the parade this year ... but my driver (former city manager Matt Winkel) was out of town. Hopefully he will be here for Cranberry Festival (Sept. 11-12-13) and I will again be able to hop a ride. When I mentioned that I had generally ridden in the parade, one person asked me if I was riding a horse. I assured him that wasn't the case ... but the thought made me think of the one and only time I did ride a horse. And it was short-lived and not too enjoyable ...
* * *
Speaking of the fireworks, people have asked in the past how they could help defray the cost of this outstanding display. There is one painless way: contact city hall, or mark the box on your utility bill, to say that you are willing to donate $1 a month toward the fireworks fund.
Or, if you are from out of town and would like to help, just send a check to the Bandon Chamber of Commerce and mark it for the fireworks fund. Every little bit helps . . .
* * *
Although I can't remember his name, the former priest at Holy Trinity Catholic Church has moved on after a number of parishioners complained to the diocese. The man has only been a priest for five or six years, and I believe this was his fifth church, and he lasted longest here: one year. If you have read lately how progressive the new Pope seems to be you will understand when I say this priest was pretty much the exact opposite, preferring that women have no role in his church.
The congregation now has a new priest, Father George Kuforiji, who was born in 1951 in Oshogbo, Nigeria. He was just recently ordained as a priest in Portland, and his brother, Michael Kuforiji, general consul to South Africa from Nigeria, was there, as were a large contingent of Nigerians, with many of the women wearing colorful headdresses.
Welcome Father George ...
* * *
I read about a small boat capsizing near Newport over the weekend, and even though I didn't know the people, the story was familiar. They had originally gone crabbing in Yaquina Bay, but left the bay to fish in the ocean. Although they had life jackets with them, they did not put them on even when they decided to venture further out in a 21-foot Hewes boat.
And it wasn't until the boat was struck by a "sneaker wave" and capsized were two of the four people able to put on their life jackets.
An 81-year-old man from Salem died, while the three survivors were taken to the community hospital in Newport for minor injuries.
No doubt all four would have survived had they taken the time to wear their life jackets instead of sit on them ... or whatever they were doing with them.
* * *
I can still remember when the City of Bandon rationed water some years ago (back in the '80s, I think). We could only water on certain days.
While we are not yet at the point where mandatory restrictions will be imposed, the city is asking people to take voluntary measures to save water.
For example, run your washing machine only with a full load. Turn the faucet off after wetting your toothbrush, or in between washing food or dishes. Water your lawn early in the morning and late in the evening, and never when it's windy (good luck with that). When you set up the sprinklers, make sure the water is hitting the lawn and not the driveway, sidewalk or gutters. Check faucets, pipes and toilets for leaks.
One of our councilors spoke last week with the water plant operator and he says "it doesn't look good," which could well mean mandatory measures. But in the meantime, please be careful and not waste water.
Speaking of wasting water. Saturday afternoon as I was walking to my car I noticed water pouring across the parking lot between the Cobbler's Bench and Devon's. I know there is a spring in the hillside, which sometimes drains in the winter, but as dry as it has been, and the fact that it hadn't been there when I parked, made me know there was a leak somewhere.
I went inside the Cobbler's Bench and was told that they had just notified someone at Bandon Inn, which sits atop the hill. I haven't heard if it was a broken sprinkler or a broken water line ... but they lost quite a bit of water.
* * *
Don't be surprised if you see a weight-limit sign on the Ferry Creek Bridge (on Fillmore leading out to Riverside Drive) indicating that the bridge should not take any vehicle weighing more than 8,000 pounds (4 tons).
That's not so big by today's truck standards. For example, the City's electric utility has a Ford Crew Cab that weighs 8,200 pounds.
It will also be necessary for the City to work with all three of its utilities to work out ways they can access the wastewater treatment plant without exceeding the weight limit.
ODOT recently "load rated" the bridge, and that's where the 8,000 pound limit came from.
The City is hoping to get a grant to replace the bridge.
* * *
Bandon was recently honored in a Saturday Evening Post article titled "America's 10 Best Beaches." In the May/June 2015 issue, Bandon was named the second best beach behind Pauoa Beach on the Kohala Coast of Hawaii.
The article lists Bandon's star power: "Thanks to the chilly water, Bandon beach is not a swimming beach. But there's a lot to explore, particularly at low tide.
"Sandwiched between dense forest and the Pacific, the beach offers dramatic views of rock pillars jutting from the ocean, as well as small islands inhabited by nesting seabirds, birthing seals, and more. Don't be surprised if you happen upon a sea lion having a splash."
The article adds that fine heather-toned sand grains pack well for castle building, and at least 20 varieties of agates, including carnelian, moss and cloud, can be found on the beach.
"Local lore: According to legend, the curious rock formations along the beach were formed when a mountain chief brought his daughter to the shore for the first time. Ignoring the warning that looking at the evil ocean spirit Seatco would turn her to stone, the daughter wandered the beach and was frozen in place."
The article mentioned Windermere on the Beach as the place to say with beach access and panoramic views of the Southern Oregon coastline. "Bandon's best scene for a sunset cocktail is The Loft, which sits atop the High Dock building and serves exquisite Pacific Coast-fusion cuisine."
Other beaches mentioned were Pfeiffer Beach at Big Sur, Calif., Cape Hatteras Lighthouse Beach at Buxton, N.C., The Beach at Sunken Forest at Fire Island, N.Y., Peterson Beach at Sleeping Bear Dunes National Lakeshore, Mich., Padre Island National Seashore at North Padre Island, Tex., Higbee Beach at Cape May, N.J., Moshup Beach at Martha's Vineyard, Mass., and Henderson Beach State Park at Destin, Fla.
As I See It
by Mary Schamehorn
July 01, 2015
The quality of the first picture I've chosen to share this week isn't the best, but it does show how different the landscape was in 1971 ... compared to today when both Moore Mill (back left) and the Moore Mill truck Shop (back right) are long gone. Not to mention how much the face of the waterfront has changed ... for the better. An employee of the port is pictured building docks in March of 1971.
Building docks, 1971
Most of us old-timers remember when the post office was downtown, in the building on Baltimore Avenue which later housed Andrea's, Thai Thai and a host of other restaurants before it became Foley's Irish Pub. This picture was taken in 1973 ... long before the Pedway was built as part of the Old Town restoration, which took place in the early '80s. You can see the back of Dave Elliott's Radio Shack business and across Second Street was the office of Kronenberg & Waldrop.
Downtown Post Office, 1973
I've chosen the third picture, taken in 1974, to show the change in population, which was 1,940 40 years ago and has now grown (but not nearly as much as predicted) to just over 3,100 today. Across the street from the highway sign is Ocean Spray's receiving plant. The building is now owned by Larry Hardin and houses the Sisters Cottage, and the cranberry plant is located several miles south of town.
Bandon population, 1974
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An article in last week's Western World touched on one of my greatest fears: someone starting an arson fire in the doughnut hole (that unincorporated area ringed by the city limits), which is several hundred acres of dense gorse.
This is believed to be just another in a series of arson fires, which began last November when someone set fire to the softball dugouts on 11th Street ... twice in one day.
The same person is also suspected of setting fire to a dumpster behind Bandon High School a few months later.
Fire Chief Lanny Boston is asking for any information or witnesses who may have seen anyone who might have set three fires in the doughnut hole. He said two of the fires were set at about the same time and a third one later.
"This wasn't somebody walking by who flipped a cigarette; these were deliberately set. But those fires lay on the ground and didn't go anywhere because of the humidity (high) and because there was no wind, so we were very fortunate," Boston said.
A reward of $4,000 is being offered to anyone who can provide information that leads to the arrest and conviction of the dugout and dumpster fires.
He said an additional arson fire was set to a vehicle parked outside of Coastline Auto Body in May.
Boston likened arson fires to "almost homicide by proxy, especially if one of my men gets killed or if a house catches on fire" and its residents are hurt.
Anyone with information about the fires can call 9-1-1, the Bandon police non-emergency line at 541-347-2241, or Boston at the Bandon Fire Department (541-347-3560).
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The Fourth of July, which comes on Saturday this year, is always the first of the two big celebrations of the year ... the other being the Cranberry Festival, which is set for Sept. 11-13.
There are so many things going on that it's hard to describe them all in a short column item, but if you aren't aware of the schedule, you can always pick up the June 25 Western World. It's all in there.
The fly-over by Bandon Aero Club is scheduled to kickoff the parade at 10 a.m., and I do know that chairman Dawn Dixon is actively seeking more entrants for the parade. To enter, contact her at 541-347-5683, 541-252-7322 or via email at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Cheese burgers and hot dogs will be available at the Lions Club barbecue in City Park from 11 a.m. to 2:30 p.m. And I think there will be music at the new bandstand.
From 3 to 5 p.m., the Port will hold its first-ever cardboard boat races in the boat basin. There are rules that need to be followed, and you can find them at www.portofbandon.com, or stop in at The Cobbler's Bench and talk to Peter; I know he's busy building his own boat.
The Greater Bandon Association will hold its second Alive After Five wine and art walk Saturday (5 to 7:30 p.m.), with glasses available at the port's picnic shelter on the boardwalk for $10. From 8 to 10 p.m., apple pie and ice cream will be available on the boardwalk.
The grand fireworks begins at dusk (generally around 10 p.m.), shot off over the Coquille River from the north side.
There are also a host of other events planned, from a sand labyrinth to a Relay for Life fundraiser at the Old Town Marketplace ... with lots more info in Western World.
And don't forget, if that isn't enough to do, you can stop by the Coos Kennel Club's annual AKC Dog Show from 8 a.m. to 5 p.m. Saturday and 8 a.m. to 4 p.m. on Sunday in the grassy area between the high school and middle school on Ninth Street.
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It's sad that it takes a Celebration of Life to bring people together, but that's what happened Saturday when a number of people joined the locals for an event honoring the late Ron "Feathers" Knox, at the Community Center in City Park.
Judy was surrounded by her family and Ron's family and a big crowd of friends as we all came together to say goodbye to our friend.
Among those that I saw from out of town were former long-time fireman Steve Fox and BHS graduates Bob Asay (1957) and his wife, Sally, (1959), who have lived in Eugene for many years. Also coming from out of town was Ron's cousin, Linda Crew, and her husband. Sorry but I didn't catch his name.
Ron's mother came from a very large family, and there were lots of cousins there to honor him.
Judy is having a pretty hard time, but she is hoping to be back working at the museum in a couple of weeks.
* * *
After cleaning out my little BMW of all traces of rats (or maybe they were mice), I was sorry to learn that my radio would not work. Hoping that it was just a fuse, I took it in to the local Napa store, where Steve McNeil was gracious enough to help me. We opened the hood, pulled out the fuse box (a pretty complicated contraption that you would only find in a car like this). Sadly, Steve tested both fuses that were identified as being for the radio, and both worked. I didn't try the radio, but was prepared to take it to a stereo place to determine if the wires had been chewed.
But much to my surprise, as I drove out to the lighthouse that evening, I noticed there was a light on in my stereo. I punched it ... and on it came, blasting out Emmylou Harris' "Red Dirt Girl."
My guess is that when Steve pulled out the fuses to check them, one of them may have been a bit loose or maybe it had a speck of dirt on it ... but at any rate whatever he did ... fixed it. And now I can say there's nothing at all wrong with my car.
Brian said I should not have said anything in case I decided to sell it, but I assured him I had no intention of selling it. He always thinks I talk (write) too much, and he's probably right. I did find an old bill of sale showing that in the eight years I have owned the 1997 model Z3, I've put less than 18,000 miles on it . . .
* * *
Talk about spooky. I read this week that a large chunk of ice fell out of the sky near Yakima, Wash., and went right through the roof of a home and landed in a closet.
They are speculating that the 1 foot-by-1 foot block of ice probably came from an airplane flying overhead.
No one was injured but the ice caused extensive damage to the home.
It's not something I'd lose sleep worrying about, but it is a bit disconcerting to think that a huge piece of ice could fall out of the sky ... while you were sound asleep or reclining in your rocker.
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When reviewing the list of bills that became law last week, I noticed that House Bill 3011, signed June 22, allows noncommercial car drivers to pump their own gas, so long as they're stopped at a service station in a rural area between the hours of 6 p.m. and 6 a.m.
But this Bill is primarily geared to Eastern Oregon counties with a population of 40,000 people or fewer ... so it does not affect Coos County, which has upwards of 60,000 people.
Oregon now becomes the fourth state in the nation to require paid sick days (five a year) for the workers of employers with 10 or more employees.
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People who knew my former neighbor Edna Cramer (Ron's mother) will be happy to hear that she is "still going strong" as she approaches her 99th birthday in November in her new "home" in Hillsboro.
I received a Facebook post from her last week telling me how much she misses her son, who died last year at the age of 65. She has other children, including former resident Carolyn Goldwasser, and her daughter, Susan, who lives in the Portland area.
Anyone wishing to send her a letter or card can address it to: Edna Cramer, 2405 SE Century Blvd. #202, Hillsboro, Or. 97123.
She's lonely and would love to hear from people. I sent her a letter and some of my favorite beach photos last week ...
previous columns by Mary Schamehorn