The Chronicle : Creswell & Cottage Grove. (Creswell, Ore.) 2019-current, August 29, 2019, Image 13

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    THURSDAY, AUGUST 29, 2019
T H U R S D A Y, A U G U S T 2 9 , 2 0 1 9 | PA G E 1 3
An adventure to take your breath away
Outdoors Writer
An old friend saved a quote from
a book he once read. Touched by the
words that reminded him of his first
whitewater trip, he had them written
in an old style script on parchment
paper. Nicely framed, they hang on
his living room wall and go some-
thing like this. ...
“... It will take your breath away,
first calmly drifting but then you
hear it and then see it. You pour
over the edge of the calm water, a
rush of spray hits your face, as you
feel the raft dipping and rocking
in the waves. Balancing, leaning
and maneuvering, working with
the current you pass the torrent.
And suddenly you realize, the most
exciting and terrifying moment in
your life has just happened and then
you go back for more.”
As with my buddy, that pretty
well describes the introduction to
whitewater rafting my wife and I
had. Encouraged by some friends
we all booked with a professional
outfitter as a party of six for two
days of rafting that included a
lunch. The guided trip was conve-
nient included all the gear and we
always felt safe while on the river.
The trip was flawless from start to
Our party of six were part of a
larger group but were together in
our own raft with a fun guide. The
professional, well trained guides
just instilled confidence with their
display of skill in the rapids and
team work at lunch, which was fresh
and delicious. We helped paddle the
raft in the class III+ rapids that were
exciting, big and bouncy. All in a
beautiful mountain setting and well
Evan Wills of River Trail Guides making it look “matter of fact” in the notorious Brown’s Hole. FRANK ARMENDARIZ/OUTDOORS WRITER
worth the relatively modest price
and then some.
To our good fortune we have the
McKenzie River, one of our state’s
top destinations for whitewater
boaters right here in Lane County.
The McKenzie Valley itself is rich
with year-round recreational oppor-
tunities but the warm weather that
comes every summer shifts the
attention of many to the river. I will
tell you, that we have some of the
top raft businesses with some of the
best safety records in the state right
here in Lane County and they are
now in daily operation. Catering to
whitewater enthusiasts from all over
from all over.
The opportunities are plenti-
ful and for a first family raft trip I
always recommend a licensed guide
or outfitter. There are many that
See rafting —15
Passion builds for downtown redevelopment
Staff Writer
no secret that downtown
Springfield is growing, with
new businesses moving in on
a regular basis. It is upscal-
ing and quickly becom-
ing a popular destination.
Beautification projects
include planters, murals, a
series of new streetlights and
a pilot food truck project in
front of Springfield City Hall.
The city council has also
approved decorated cross-
walks on both the north and
Main Street Developers David Loveall and his wife
Nita outside the strip of properties they own and reno-
vated on the 300 block of Main Street in Downtown
south sides of Main Street at
4th Street in the future.
A diverse group of key
players are behind this
trend, according to Michael
Eyster, chair of the Economic
Development Committee for
the Springfield Chamber of
The city, Springfield
Chamber of Commerce and
organizations such as the
Springfield Renaissance
Development Corporation
have played significant roles,
he said.
“The city has for well over
a decade committed itself to
policies that would encourage
and promote business devel-
opment downtown,” he said.
The real driving force
behind the renovations and
resurgence in downtown,
according to Eyster, has been
a handful of private develop-
ers and entrepreneurs. These
include Gabriel Hamel and
Daniel Basaraba, who own
and have renovated the Fry
and Rankin Building, which
housed the former Jim’s
Landing bar. Now it is home
to Simply Cycle, a transplant
from Eugene, and high-end
steakhouse George + Violet’s
as well as a number of fully
remo dele d apa r t ment s
Officials and business owners are working together to bring new life to downtown
Springfield. Last week, the Main Street Market opened at 330 Main Street, filling a
fresh produce void in the city center. JEN BLUE/THE CHRONICLE
The most prolific devel-
oper of the downtown area
is David Loveall of Masaka
Properties LLC, with his
Los Angeles-based partner
Robert Miller. Loveall and
Miller had been friends for
about 40 years and “we both
found ourselves semi-retired
and needing something to
See passion —15