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La Grande Observer 03/02/15

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BRIEFLY: Art Center accepting class proposals

The Art Center at the Old Library is accepting class proposals for the fall term from community teachers wishing to share their talent or craft.

Class proposal forms are due by Sept. 6. They can be found at www.artcenterlagrande.org or pick one up in person at the Art Center, 1006 Penn Ave., from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. Tuesday through Saturday.

Classes run any time from October through December and include any type of arts class. Popular styles are one-day workshops or two to four consecutive classes. Teachers are compensated per student enrolled. 

For more information, call 541-624-2800 or stop in the Art Center.


Citizens skeptical of decision, city’s protection

Steve Joseph addresses the La Grande Urban Renewal Agency Wednesday night. Joseph has a number of concerns about the decision to help fund a grocery store to the tune of $500,000. (Tim Mustoe/The Observer)
The decision to help fund a downtown grocery store did not come without plenty of public comment ahead of the Wednesday night vote.

URA approves funding for downtown grocery store

The La Grande Urban Renewal Agency, on a 4-3 vote, approved up to $500,000 in funding for the establishment of a grocery store on the west end of La Grande.

EOU wants to reach out to a new market


¿Habla Espanol?

For the Eastern Oregon University Admissions Office, the answer is now yes. 

Making math magical: Eastern Oregon University math teacher Patty Sandoz honored

Patty Sandoz teaches a math lesson at La Grande Middle School several years ago while wearing her Ms. Mathmagician costume. (Observer file)
The colorful robe hangs motionless in the closet of Eastern Oregon University math teacher Patty Sandoz, a pose which defies the feeling of intellectual energy it conveys. 

The piece of sparkling attire is a teaching tool, which adds color to the black and white world of numbers. It is Sandoz’s “Ms. Mathmagician” costume, one that comes complete with math equations. Sandoz designed it and wears it periodically when teaching. 

Wallowa County seeks recycling increase

ENTERPRISE — Wallowa County has set a goal to recycle 25 percent of its trash, a slight increase over its five-year average of 23 percent.

BRIEFLY: Page Turners read Louise Penny book

Page Turners read Louise Penny book 

Cook Memorial Library’s Page Turners Book Club is reading “How the Light Gets In” by Louise Penny for its Sept. 9 meeting. Meetings are at 1 p.m. in the Archives Room of the library. New members are welcome.

Grocery store proposal on tap

The La Grande Urban Renewal Agency will consider allocating up to $500,000 in funding for a new grocery store Wednesday night.

Timber experts talk industry

Heath Heikkila of the American Forests Resource Council talks about the challenges facing Oregon’s forests and the timber industry at a panel discussion Friday hosted by Boise Cascade in Elgin. (Katy Nesbitt/The Observer)
ELGIN — Restoring forest health and providing timber industry jobs has been a concern in Northeast Oregon for more than two decades. Friday morning, a panel of experts from around the state talked about the challenges and opportunities to timber-dependent communities.

Replacing a culvert, restoring fish passage

ODOT Region 5 Biologist Christian Jilek looks down the 25-foot drop Ladd Creek currently takes right off Interstate 84 about 5 miles southeast of La Grande. A project will soon correct the drop and restore fish passage in the area. (Kelly Ducote/The Observer)
In the 1970s when Interstate 84 was constructed through Ladd Canyon, Chinook salmon and steelhead lost nearly 14 miles of spawning and rearing habitat due to the installation of a 25-foot vertical culvert.

BRIEFLY: Ramp closed for repaving

Ramp closed for repaving 

Drivers should be aware that the ramp from Interstate 84 westbound at Exit 265 to U.S. 30 and Oregon Highway 203 will be closed between
8 a.m. and 2 p.m. Wednesday for repaving. 

When the ramp is closed, traffic should continue westbound on Interstate 84 and take Exit 261 to get to La Grande.

One vehicle rollover sends one to Washington hospital

The Oregon State Police is investigating an early Sunday morning single vehicle injury traffic crash that occurred along Interstate 84 east of La Grande in Union County. The operator and only occupant of the vehicle received serious injuries as a result of the crash. Driver fatigue is being investigated as a main factor in the crash. 

Fire restrictions ease on private lands in NE Oregon

Rain and cooler temperatures have prompted the Oregon Department of Forestry to ease fire restrictions on private forestlands in the Northeast Oregon District, starting Friday. 



BRIEFLY: Potluck honors runners’ trek

Potluck honors runners’ trek

OSU Extension Family & Community Health is welcoming Isaiah and Jeremiah Godby to Union County at a picnic and potluck at 6 p.m. Monday at Birnie Park, C Avenue and Sixth Street. The Godby brothers are students at the OSU School of Public Health and Human Sciences. They are running 1,675 miles through 30 counties in Oregon to encourage a healthy lifestyle and to support and celebrate Oregon’s first nationally accredited college of public health and human sciences. 

They will run from Baker City to La Grande Monday.  OSU Alumni, Beaver fans and any other community members are welcome to join the party or run with them. For more information, call the Extension Office at 541-963-1010 or visit http://blogs.oregonstate.edu/healthrun/.

County project extension possible

Union County may be able to get an extension for its courthouse project, according to a state representative from the Oregon Judicial Department.

Phil Lemman, legislative communication manager for the OJD, said Thursday that the OJD has the authority to disburse funds allocated by the Legislature until the end of the biennium, June 30, 2015, but an extension would be contingent on the county’s ability to come up with a viable plan for a completed project.

Ready to get its kicks

Jay Kenton, left, Eastern Oregon University interim president, Anji Weissenfluh, athletics director, and Xavier Romano, EOU vice president for student success, are excited about having a men’s soccer team and hope to recruit new students and athletes to the school because of it. (Cherise Kaechele/The Observer)
Eastern Oregon University announced Thursday that the school will have a men’s soccer team beginning next fall.

Jay Kenton, EOU interim president, said during a press conference that he believes the program will bring returns at a limited cost to the university.

PGG makes deal to sell retail stores

Pendleton Grain Growers says it plans to sell its AG Supply retail stores in Hermiston, Island City, left, and Joseph.
Pendleton Grain Growers has entered into negotiations to sell the AG Supply retail stores in Joseph, Island City and Hermiston. 

The three stores will not be closing. It will continue to be business as usual, Maddee Moore, a spokesperson for PGG, said. 

Oregon to clarify insurance rules on autism treatment

SALEM — The Oregon Department of Consumer and Business Services, Insurance Division announced Thursday it will begin drafting a bulletin to clarify insurers' responsibility to cover Applied Behavior Analysis therapy as a treatment for autism. 

EOU to play men's soccer next fall

Eastern Oregon University announced in a Thursday press conference that it will launch it's mens soccer program to play in fall 2014.

"I'm very happy about this," said Jay Kenton, interim EOU president. "We're here for the long run."

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