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The Observer Paper 12/22/14

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Business & Ag Life

The Short Stop adds frozen yogurt to menu

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Preparing for the day’s customers Tuesday morning, Ashlyn Christison wipes down the wheelchair accessible yogurt machines at the new yogurt business addition to The Short Stop at Gekeler Lane and 12th Street in south La Grande. (Chris Baxter/The Observer)
 

Store plans to add coffee shop soon 

On hot summer days, a cold treat can hit the spot. Fred Bell Jr., owner of The Short Stop, hopes he can deliver a creative creamy dessert for the right price.


Branching out

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Frankie Chen, owner and manager of the Golden Crown restaurant on Adams Avenue recently purchased the Bangkok East Thai restaurant next door to his establishment. In the near future, Bangkok East will do business as Saia Thai. (Bill Rautenstrauch / For WesCom News Service)
 

Golden Crown acquires next-door neighbor, Bangkok East 

A young entrepreneur who was born in China and educated in La Grande has branched out, acquiring a second Oriental-style restaurant in downtown La Grande.


Art Center proponents look next door for space

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The Liberty Theater Foundation hopes to purchase the C.D. Putnam Ready Wear Building, at left, and make it part of a restored Liberty Theater (building at right). The Putnam building would house an expanded lobby, offices and more. (Photo by Bill Rautenstrauch)
 

The Liberty Theater restoration project in downtown La Grande made more forward progress recently, as it was awarded a grant to pay for a concept master plan for use of the C.D. Putnam Ready Wear Building next door to the theater.

The $4,800 grant, from the Johanna Favrot Fund for Historic Preservation, will help the Liberty Theater Foundation pay for an analysis of ways the Putnam Building might be utilized to enhance theater operations.


RV park changes hands

A young couple hailing from Oregon’s Mt. Hood corridor is set to start a new life in Union County, and in at least one way, their new digs look like home. 

Have clippers, will travel

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Tippie Toes owner Dave Osmick trims the toenails of La Grande resident Cheyanna Inman. Osmick recently started Tippie Toes, a one-of-a-kind business catering to those who have trouble cutting their own toenails. (Chris Baxter/The Observer)
 

With years of service as a certified nursing assistant, La Grande resident Dave Osmick has learned that some people need a lot of help with activities of daily living, and others just a little bit of specialized assistance.


Changing hands

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Washington Federal plans to acquire 51 Bank of America branches including La Grande’s branch on Washington Avenue. (Chris Baxter/The Observer)
 

La Grande Bank of America branch to become Washington Federal 

La Grande Bank of America customers will face some changes toward the end of 2013.


Closing up shop

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Like his mother, Jean Johnston, before him, Jim Rygg operated 1012 Adams Antiques as a co-op. Though plans are not solidified, the antiques building at 1012 Adams Ave. may become a part of the Liberty Theater, located next door at 1010 Adams Ave. (BILL RAUTENSTRAUCH for WESCOM News Service)

Antiques store in downtown La Grande is shutting its doors after 30-year run 

With years and years of antique dealing under his belt, Jim Rygg has learned one thing above all others: “antique” is in the eye of the beholder.

A purist says that an antique is an object from human society that is at least 100 years old and still in its original, unaltered condition. Many other people, though, go with their gut. An antique is anything from a former era that interests them. 


Island City man launches limousine service

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Long-time Island City resident Justin Hoyt recently started Showtime Limousine, offering people the chance to add some luxury to their special event or night on the town. Hoyt’s service is available anywhere in Northeast Oregon. (Courtesy photo)
 

ISLAND CITY — A bakery truck driver from Island City is moonlighting these days, doing his all to help people make their special event or night on the town a memorable experience.


A life in optometry

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The thousands of patients optometrist Bert Frewing has examined include Bonnie Godfrey, who is also his office manager. (Chris Baxter/The Observer)
 

45-year career in La Grande coming to a close for retiring Bert Frewing 

LA GRANDE  — Most people emerge from a dip in a swimming pool feeling refreshed.

Not this La Grande man. Three months ago, he emerged from a brief swim with burning eyes and badly blurred vision. So bad was his sight he could not make it on his own to La Grande optometrist Bert Frewing for treatment. 


Scoring on shoes

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Joe, foreground, and Ed Garland had Nike, Adidas, New Balance and other brands on display on a row of folding tables at the Cove football camp. Behind the tables, the brothers had dozens of large cardboard boxes with even more selections. (Brad Mosher/The Observer)
 

Brothers with Eastern Oregon ties travel to football and sports camps throughout the Northwest selling high-quality, surplus athletic shoes to student-athletes for $40 a pair

COVE — Joe Garland and his brother, Ed, definitely made a big impression at the recent Cove football camp.


Wolfe Fleece & Clothing changes its name

JOSEPH — Wolfe Fleece & Clothing Company of Joseph is changing its name to Tempting Teal.

War on weeds hits a snag

 ENTERPRISE — Managing natural resources is a tough business. Managing natural resources during bad economic times is even tougher. 


Remodeling begins at Lear’s Pub and Grill

ENTERPRISE — Sometimes you got to break some eggs to make an omelet. At Lear’s Main Street Pub and Grill, renovations are underway, both structurally and aesthetically.

A weak spot in the floor behind the bar led to a much bigger project. A big chunk of the floor was removed, exposing joists and dirt that hadn’t seen the light of day since 1896. Owner Steve Lear said the pub is the oldest building on Main Street, and he and his wife, Cathie, are not just fixing an area worn out with age, but are renovating the front of the pub, the barbershop next door, and the “grill” or adjacent dining area where music shows such as Wallowa Valley Music Alliance’s Tunesmith are held.


EOU prof believes beer can boost economy

LA GRANDE — Jeff Dense gets the question all the time:  what makes a political science professor at Eastern Oregon University so interested in beer?

Dense admits a personal interest in the subject, one that extends easily into his academic life.  Beer relates to taxation, globalization, politics, and economic development.


Stampeders finally get ropes around Rich Cason

ELGIN —The Elgin Stampeders will honor Stampede Legend Rich Cason as Grand Marshal to preside over the 2013 Elgin Stampede Rodeo festivities during July 11-14.

The Stampeders have had their lassos circling overhead for the elusive mountain man for quite some time.


B&K marks 40 years

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Jake Hanson is in charge of the 14-employee operation at B&K Auto Salvage, which has expanded into scrap metal recycling. (Bill Rautenstrauch/For The Observer)
 

Union County business celebrates four decades of salvaging autos; expands its operations to include scrap metal recycling 

It’s entertainment watching Jake Hanson work.

From his corner office at B&K Auto Salvage, he multi-tasks, taking money in and paying money out, answering the phone  and giving orders to his employees over a two-way radio. At times, he stands up and leans out a window, directing traffic in and out of the yard.


Program aims to help veterans find jobs

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Ricardo Gloria, Ontario, a member of the Oregon National Guard’s Joint Transition Assistance Program, stands next to a H2H banner at an Ontario veteran’s awareness event. Gloria said the H2H website furnishes an innovative and viable platform for veterans who seek employment. (Pat Caldwell/For The Observer)
 

ONTARIO — A distinctive online resource designed specifically to aid members of the Guard and Reserves to find employment is gaining momentum in Eastern Oregon and throughout the state, according to 
a regional veteran transition specialist.


Lostine native fills administrative assistant post

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Lacey McQuead is the City of Enterprise’s new administrative assistant. (Katy Nesbitt/The Observer)
 

After more than 20 years, there’s a new face at the Enterprise city office. Lacey McQuead replaced longtime Administrative Assistant Janet Livingston this spring and is settling in quite well.


Full-service sign shop opens in Enterprise

ENTERPRISE — Bird Dog Signs opened this spring in Enterprise filling a storefront on the highly visible corner of River and Main streets and ensuring the county continues to have a dependable, full-service sign shop.

Melissa Duncan worked for venerable signmaker Ted Hays for 10 years. When Hays retired, Duncan bought Hays’ printer and equipment and moved next door, painting her Bird Dog logo on the front door; an artistic representation of, well, a dog and a bird...


Grass-fed meats available through CSA

ENTERPRISE — Backyard Gardens and 6 Ranch join forces this season to offer Wallowa Valley grass-fed meat to Backyard Gardens’ vegetable share members.  

Members who receive their weekly vegetables will have the option to receive a monthly supply of locally raised grass-fed beef, pork, and lamb distributed through 6 Ranch.

Adele Nash of 6 Ranch said, “I’m really excited to have this happening.  This is an affordable way for local residents to purchase high quality, local meats.”


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