Cottage Grove sentinel. (Cottage Grove, Or.) 1909-current, October 28, 2015, Image 1

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    Symphony, part II — 5A
Faith Page — 6A
Concerning Creswell — 9A
Girls' soccer
tops Sky-Em,
page 1B
Council votes to ban smoking in parks
Another 'yes' vote is needed
to enact the ordinance
The Cottage Grove Sentinel
he Cottage Grove City
Council passed a unani-
mous vote to prohibit smoking
in the City’s parks on Monday
night, though the Council’s
rules dictate that it will require
another passing vote at a subse-
quent meeting to enact the ordi-
City Manager Richard Mey-
ers explained to the Council
that Mayor Tom Munroe had
expressed an interest in banning
smoking in the parks, and by
the comments and vote from the
Council, it appears they share
that interest. The Council is ex-
pected to revisit the ordinance
again at its Nov. 9 meeting, at
which it will likely be adopted.
Currently, city codes prohibit
smoking inside park buildings,
with reference to the Indoor
Clean Air Act, and a recent
council discussion regarding
the use of electronic smoking
devices, or “vaping,” amended
the defi nition of “smoking” to
mean “inhaling, exhaling, burn-
ing, or carrying any lighted or
heated cigar, cigarette, pipe,
weed, plant or other tobacco-
like product…in any form,”
which also includes “the use of
an electronic smoking device.”
Councilor Jeff Gowing indi-
cated a concern that the ordi-
nance didn’t specify a stance on
the use of chewing tobacco, to
which Meyers responded that
the new rule would state that no
person may use a tobacco prod-
uct, which would include chew-
ing tobacco.
A light crowd observed the
proceedings Monday night, with
the few public comments reg-
istered in support of the parks
smoking ban.
Garrett Bridgens, a school-
district employee, said he came
to address the Council as a fa-
ther who has had to tell his chil-
dren he can’t use the swings at
City parks because there were
people smoking there.
“There are places we want
kids to be able to go to be in a
smoke-free environment,” Brid-
gens said.
Elizabeth Boram thanked the
Council for “considering mak-
ing this place as healthy as pos-
sible.” A nurse by occupation,
Boram said she had witnessed
“sad things about mothers who
smoke and have smoke around
children.” She also asked if the
ordinance addressed marijuana
smoke, to which Meyers re-
sponded that smoking marijuana
in public is already illegal.
Jessica Pemberton said that,
as a former smoker, signs in-
forming her that it was illegal to
smoke near building entrances
opened her eyes to the impact
smoking can have on others.
“I fi gure that if people see
signs there (at the parks) say-
ing not to smoke, maybe they
would actually move away from
Please see PARKS, Page 10A
Head, Hands,
Heart, Health
Supporters of 4-H hoping it can make a
comeback in South Lane County
The Cottage Grove Sentinel
he rain beat steadily on the
metal roofs of the barns at
the Western Oregon Exposition
Fairgrounds on Sunday, but the
much-needed showers did little
to dampen the mood inside.
There, youths busied them-
selves with sack races, balloon
games and a “needle in the hay-
stack” search that substituted
coins for needles — the kind of
“wholesome fun” that one par-
ent and volunteer said epitomiz-
es the program the event aimed
to promote.
A few dozen kids and their
parents attended the second in a
series of meetings that doubled
as a way to get the word out
about 4-H — the youth mentor-
ing and development organiza-
tion that boasts over six million
members aged 5-18 nationwide
— in southern Lane County. Or-
ganizers say a chicken barbeque
held last month drew about 80
youths to learn about 4-H, a plus
for an organization that’s hop-
ing to rebound from the loss of
county funding that essentially
ended its offerings in the area.
In previous years, Lane Coun-
ty partnered with the Oregon
State University Extension Ser-
vice to offer 4-H here, but hard
economic times, coupled with
the County’s loss of federal tim-
ber funds, forced the County to
cut its funding to the Extension
in 2008.
“Every state in the nation has
4-H, as does every county, but
our county doesn’t support it, so
we have to do it ourselves,” said
Ken Ball, a Community Club
Leader who’s been involved
with the program for decades.
Free library goes up
downtown, page 3A
photo by Jon Stinnett
Tara Eckstine helps son Augie get ready for a sack race with Everett Eckstine and
Colton Crudele during a 4-H event at the WOE Fairgrounds Sunday.
There are 4-H clubs operating
in East Lane County (headquar-
tered in Pleasant Hill) and Lon-
don Springs, but Ball and others
are hoping the South Lane group
has a bright future after a lack of
activity until about a year ago.
Still, the lack of funding means
that membership fees are need-
ed to fund 4-H programs, which
Ball said can be a diffi cult pros-
pect for area families.
“I’d way we have about 20
percent of the membership we
used to, judging from the turn-
out at the Lane County animal
auction,” he said. “I’m not sure
we’ll ever be as big as we used
to be.”
“But we’re staying hopeful,”
interjected Brittney Kuebler, a
club leader who began her in-
volvement in 4-H and the WOE
Fair at age six.
Please see 4-H, Page 10A
Non-native crayfi sh
concern ODFW,
page 5B
Ribbon-cutting dedicates Row undercrossing
The Cottage Grove Sentinel
he afternoon of Wednesday, Oct.
21 saw the offi cial unveiling of
an underpass for the Row River bike
path. The path itself is a widely popular
attraction in the community, and dur-
ing last week’s ribbon cutting, speakers
stated that the underpass (which takes
cyclists and other users under Row Riv-
er Road) is a necessity.
The path saw its fi rst fatality in 2007.
The victim of the tragedy was Claude
Weimer, a new member of the Cottage
Grove community (just six months)
who was hit by a car. Four years later,
Michele Portmann was hit and killed
by a car on the same path at the same
crossing. East Lane County Commis-
Transportation Planning Manager, also
praised the success of the project.
“It’s unfortunate that these things
are precipitated by a tragic event, but
it really makes people want to act,” she
Standing to cut the ribbon were the
family members who survived Weimer
and Portmann. Weimer’s wife, Elaine,
held the gigantic scissors to cut the rib-
bon while Portmann’s sister, Marsha
Yandell, watched on.
The tunnel was accompanied by an-
other project (under the same $1 mil-
lion federal grant) to rebuild a crossing
at milepost 5.4.
Cottage Grove resident and cycling
enthusiast Don Strahan feels the tunnel
is a huge improvement for the safety of
sioner Faye Stewart was there to speak
at the unveiling.
“When you fi nd yourself in a position
where you really need to act, it’s really
important that this all came together,”
Stewart said. “Through hard work and
great partnerships, we were able to ac-
complish what you see today.”
Individually, the city of Cottage
Grove and Lane County struggled to
fi nd the funds and resources to begin
the project, which totaled $1 million.
“Coming together to do it all, and
partnering with Weitman Excavation
made it possible,” Stewart said.
Stewart, who is also a Cottage Grove
resident, recalled his worries using the
path with his children, and said he now
feels much safer.
Lydia McKinney, the Lane County
photo by Greg Lee
Elaine Weimer, wife of Claude Weimer, and Marsha Yandell, sister of
Michele Portmann, cut the ribbon todedicate the new undercrossing.
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Licensed in the
State of Oregon
On the Internet
(541) 942-3325
By telephone
(541) 942-3328
By fax
By e-mail
P.O. Box 35, Cottage Grove, OR 97424
By mail
Corner of Sixth and Whiteaker, Cottage Grove
In person
58 49
Poss. showers
Calendar....................................... 11B
Channel Guide ............................... 7B
Classified ads................................. 5B
Obituaries....................................... 2A
Opinion .......................................... 4A
Public Safety .................................. 5A
Sports ............................................ 1B