In Uniform: JOSHUA PARKER
ILWACO, Wash. - Seaman Joshua Parker graduated from basic training in the United States Coast Guard at Cape May, N.J., on Nov. 27. He is currently assigned to the Coast Guard station at Ilwaco, Wash.
Parker attended his last year of high school at St. Mary's Academy in St. Mary's, Kan.
He is the son of Mike and Janel Parker-McCurdy of Canyon City and the grandson of Ted and Janis Merrill of John Day.
Newspaper posts early deadline
JOHN DAY - The Blue Mountain Eagle announces early deadlines for the Christmas holiday. Advertising and news items must be submitted by 5 p.m. Thursday, Dec. 19, for publication in the Dec. 25 edition. The Eagle office will be closed on Christmas Day.
For more information, call 575-0710.
Goose Rock Bridge undergoes repairs; traffic limited
KIMBERLY - The Goose Rock Bridge near the intersection of Highway 26 and Highway 19 at Picture Gorge is undergoing repair work that will restrict usage to vehicles with a gross vehicle weight of 26,000 pounds or less.
Growing cracks in the 60-year-old, 350-foot-long structure over the John Day River prompted the Oregon Department of Transportation to impose the restrictions and declare the need for repairs an emergency. Repair work began Dec. 16 and is expected to take several months. Repairs will include injecting epoxy into the cracks and installing metal supports, called stirrups, around the bridge beams.
A detour has been implemented with flaggers currently posted at the junction of Oregon Highway 19 and Route 402, which continues east to Long Creek, then on to Mt. Vernon. Flaggers also are positioned at the intersection of highways 26 and 19 near Picture Gorge.
Christmas dinner open to community
JOHN DAY - Anyone who is traveling, in need or without family during the Christmas holiday is invited, along with other community members, to attend a free Christmas dinner noon-3 p.m. on Christmas Day at the John Day Senior Center, 142 N.E. Dayton St.
A traditional dinner of turkey and ham and all the trimmings will be served.
The John Day Volunteer Firefighters Association and the Grant County Police Officers Association have made monetary donations to make this event possible. For more information, call Glenn and RoseAnn Palmer at 575-1569.
New Year's fireworks usher in 2003
CANYON CITY - The Whiskey Gulch Gang will open F.C. Sels Brewery to the public on New Year's Eve. Hot chocolate, cookies and other goodies will be served fireside and at midnight, fireworks will signify the coming of the New Year.
"The annual fireworks display is one way for the Gang to thank people in Grant County for their support of '62 Days Celebration and the Demolition Derby. Everyone is invited to warm up by the fire or check out the brewery, which dates back to 1872," said Dave Traylor.
County offices adjust hours
CANYON CITY - Grant County offices will be closing two hours early on Dec. 24 and remain closed on Christmas Day, Dec. 25. In addition, the Extension and 4-H Service District Office will be closed Thursday and Friday, Dec. 26-27.
Employment office closes for holiday
JOHN DAY - The John Day Employment Department will be closed Wednesday and Thursday, Dec. 25-26. The office will resume regular hours on Friday, Dec. 27 at 9 a.m.
For more information, call 575-0744.
Scouts support local food bank
JOHN DAY - The Webelos in Den 3 - Dylan Brandsma, Jonathon Roy and Tyler Ellis - sacked up 100 10-pound bags of potatoes on Dec. 6 for Grant County Food Bank as part of their Community Service Project. The potatoes were donated by Bob and Johnnie Titus of Prairie City, who have donated 2 tons of potatoes a year for the past three years. The potatoes come from Nyssa.
The Food Bank distributes over 100 food boxes a month, feeding about 257 people, including 25 children under the age of 6. Eleven volunteers put in more than 122 man hours per month, which also takes into account picking up food monthly in La Grande. The annual "Scouting For Food" project in November added 2,700 pounds that was donated to the Grant County Food Bank.
The Grant County Food Bank will move into its new location at 528 East Main Street the end of December.
Volunteer Jerry Beil said, "The nicest thing about the new location will be water, heat, access to bathrooms and having three times the space of the current building."
Food distribution is the second Wednesday of the month. Next day of operation is Jan. 14.
Nazarenes offer parenting series
JOHN DAY - The "Growing Kids God's Way" parenting series will begin Jan. 6 and continue each Monday evening through May 12 at the John Day Church of the Nazarene.
The goal of Growing Families International is "to raise a godly generation of children, to provide practical instruction that will help parents understand the principles and application of Biblical ethics, to instill confidence in parents of the sufficiency of God's word, and to help families look positively to the teen years."
For information on the curriculum or registration fees, which include workbooks, call the church office at 575-1895 by Dec. 26. Child care is provided for a nominal fee.
Oregon Office of Energy offers solar tax credit
SALEM - With another tax season around the corner, Oregonians have some great news from the sun and the Oregon Office of Energy. Oregon homeowners are eligible for a tax credit of up to $1,500 for installing solar hot water in their home. This is a dollar-for-dollar tax credit, not a deduction. The tax credit is based on how much energy is saved by the solar water heater that you install, so most Oregonians are eligible for the whole $1,500. Deadline for application is Dec. 31.
In addition to the tax credit, many utility companies are promoting the solar hot water systems by offering their clients rebates and financing incentives for using green energy technology.
For more information about Oregon's Solar Tax Credit, call the Oregon Solar, Tax Credit line at 1-800-869-7665.
Grants available from 24 Hour Relay committee
JOHN DAY - The 24 Hour Relay will hold its last opportunity for community groups to apply for grants with approximately $6,700 available. The application period is Dec. 9-Feb. 14.
Each application will be reviewed by a committee and up to $500 may be given. Applications can be picked up and returned at Pioneer Bank in John Day.
Anyone with questions about the applications can contact Dottie Lamolinara at 575-4258.
Americanism essays invited from students
JOHN DAY - The John Day American Legion Auxiliary is sponsoring its annual Americanism Essay Contest requesting submissions from third- through 12th-grade students on the topic of "What America's Future Holds For Me."
The deadline for entries is Feb. 13. Essays must be typewritten. Third- and fourth-graders' essays should contain 150-250 words; fifth- and sixth-graders, 250-300 words; and grades seven through 12, 450-500 words.
For more information, Auxiliary chairwoman Marge Wagner at 575-1872.
GUHS drama club presents plays
JOHN DAY - The public is invited to attend two one-act plays presented by Grant Union High School Drama Club on Thursday and Friday, Dec. 19-20. Both performances will begin at 7 p.m. in the old gym.
"The Clown's Christmas Party" by James H. Brock offers the gift that never stops giving - laughter! The 20 minute one-act clown show for children of all ages also will be on stage on 8:50 a.m. Thursday at Seneca School, then again 10 a.m. Thursday at Humbolt Elementary School.
During the two-night performances, "Our Miss Brooks and The Christmas Carol" by Kristen Sergel will follow intermission and musical numbers and dance by members of the Drama Club. "Our Miss Brooks and The Christmas Carol" tells the story of a stage production with a cast that is in rebellion and includes wild rehearsals and the discovery that someone has hung mistletoe all around the school.
General admission is $3 at the door; children 9 and younger, $1. For more information, call Julie Reynolds at 575-1799.
Hodge performs at Straight Street
JOHN DAY - Ira Hodge & Friends, a local group will perform 7-10 p.m. Saturday, Dec. 21, at Straight Street Coffee House, 139 N.E. Dayton St. This performance was postponed from last month.
Hodge, the pastor of Strawberry Mountain Christian Fellowship, will be joined by several other musicians with a mix of Christian music styles including contemporary, country, folk and worship. His wife, Carolyn, wrote some of the songs and will join the performance as a vocalist. He previously played in coffee houses in the Jacksonville area and enjoys the informal setting.
Straight Street Coffee House offers live music on every third Saturday evening. A game room is offered along with refreshments. Admission is free, but donations are accepted.
Farm Service Agency committee announces local election results
JOHN DAY - Kim Lemons of Mt. Vernon has been re-elected to the Grant County Farm Service Agency Committee. Kathy Clausen, Guy Patterson and Kathleen Jordan were elected Grant County committee alternates. They will represent Local Administrative Area No. 2, which includes Mt. Vernon, Dayville and Fox.
The committee is responsible for the overall direction of the operations of the Grant County FSA Office and the Administration of the various USDA farm programs at the county level. Lemons and the alternates take office Jan. 1, 2003.
For more information, call Grant County Farm Service Agency Executive Director Tom Falvey at 575-1274, extension 2.
OTEC offers scholarships
BAKER CITY - Oregon Trail Electric Co-op will award 18 scholarships of $1,000 each to qualifying students in the OTEC service district.
Scholarships for 2003 will be granted to students of any age who plan to attend an accredited college, university, vocational or technical school. Deadline to apply is Jan. 15, 2003, for fall semester scholarships.
Applicants or their parents must be actively receiving electrical service from OTEC. In addition, applicants must complete a scholarship application form, obtain letters of recommendation, describe plans for future education, an explain how this scholarship will aid them in achieving their goals. More information and forms are available at the local OTEC office at 245 S. Canyon Blvd., John Day.
BMCC hosts Christmas Eve Dinner
PENDLETON - The holidays have arrived at Blue Mountain Community College, as students and staff prepare for the 32st annual Christmas Eve Dinner. This long-standing event provides area residents, who otherwise might spend Christmas alone, with an evening of holiday cheer.
The festivities include a turkey dinner with all the trimmings and a visit with Santa for everyone. The dinner is continuous, starting at 5 p.m. with the dining room closing at 6:30 p.m.
The Associated Student Government coordinates the event. They receive help from staff members, administrators, alumni, and community members.
Skateboarders invited to Dec. 20 meeting
JOHN DAY - Anyone interested in creating a local skate board park is invited to attend a meeting 7 p.m. Monday, Dec. 30, at Alec Gay Hall, 178 S.E. Dayton St.
For more information, call Jessie Lewis at 575-1047.
Logging conference offers seminars, latest equipment
EUGENE - The 65th annual Oregon Logging Conference will be held Feb. 19-22 in Eugene. A full-day logger training program will be offered, and millions of dollars of equipment will be on display. On-line registration is available by accessing www.oregonloggingconf.com.