Cottage Grove sentinel. (Cottage Grove, Or.) 1909-current, April 05, 2017, Page 6A, Image 6

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Meet my Farmer event draws crowd
Saturday afternoon was unexpectedly
and drizzly. Inside the cavernous
For The Sentinel
Bohemia Public Market (BPM), on the
corner of 10th and Washington Avenue,
the atmosphere was warm and inviting for the annual Meet My
Farmer event, which heralds the start of the local growing season.
Hundreds of people of all ages gathered throughout the afternoon to
enjoy live local music, some hearty stew, purchase books and plants
and to learn more about the local food movement.
Sustainable Cottage Grove member Beth Pool organized the
event and was delighted with the turnout. She acknowledged its
roots started at the Cottage Grove First Presbyterian Church in
2009. Members of the Earth and Social Justice committee invited
local growers and producers to set up tables in the friendship hall
after a Sunday worship service and invited the community to come
and learn how to support local farmers.
“In 2015, Sustainable Cottage Grove got involved and expanded
the event so much it outgrew the church,” Pool said. BPM owner
Kim Johnson has been a terrifi c host for us for the past two years.
We’re delighted to see all these people here and they are connected
by food, which is a basic need for every person and community.”
There were 20 booths showcasing local growers of produce,
poultry, pork, plants, and explaining the concept of Community
Supported Agriculture (CSAs). CSA is a direct relationship with a
local farm. It brings stability to a farm early in the growing season
when they need it most. You sign up and pay for a share in advance,
you commit to the farm for a season, and in return you receive a
basket of produce harvested fresh and distributed each week.
Karen Bentson has been the CSA manager at Ruby and Amber’s
organic farm since 2007. The farm began in 2000 and was named
after their two draft horses used in food production.
“We live in a limited rural community,” Bentson said. “Meet My
Farmer provides an opportunity for producers to be in one place to
promote greater public awareness of the importance of supporting
local agriculture.
After taking the winter months off, the Cottage Grove’s Farmers
Market returns to 7th and Main on Thursday afternoons starting
on May 4 and continuing until Oct. 26. Erika Peterson of Dorena’s
Star Ranch said the Farmers Market featured 8-10 vendors last year.
Starting this year they are participating in the Supplemental Nu-
trition Assistance Program (SNAP), which offers food benefi ts to
eligible, low-income individuals and families. The State of Oregon
promotes the “Double Up Oregon” program that matches the fi rst
$10 spent on fruits and vegetables.
Grow It Forward is a group of local gardeners that meet monthly
in Bohemia Park to swap seeds and gardening advice. Their booth
was staffed by Yvonne Gavett and Sarah Encinas, accompanied by
Sarah’s two sons: seven-year-old Sean and three-month-old Dylan.
Both women touted the importance of getting the whole family in-
volved in growing food.
By Cindy Weeldreyer
Americana, folk and bluegrass music performed by local bands,
Almost Home, Carol Palmer and Company, and the Gause Family
Singers, provided a pleasant soundtrack for the afternoon’s activi-
ties as young and old danced to the music.
Members of the South Lane 4-H Club brought their animals to
interest youth in joining their group. Thirteen-year-old Evie Smith’s
mini Nubian goat, Hazel, was quite shy. The Parson Sisters brought
their rabbits to the event. Seven-year-old Ariel named her rabbit
“Fuzzy” and her older sister, Jasmine (9), showed off her rabbit,
Peaches. They’ve raised rabbits for three years and joined the local
4-H Club last year.
Mom Lisa Parsons said, “This is a great chance for them to get
experience interacting with people and animals and to practice for
what happens at rabbit shows.”
It was the sixth year of Saginaw Vineyards participation. A cheer-
ful Karen Proden of Saginaw Vineyards spent the afternoon pouring
wine samples and describing the character of the locally produced
“It’s fun to see everyone with their kids and their homegrown
goodies,” Proden said. “It’s a real down-home atmosphere and the
music is always great.”
e Grove
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Armory Continued A1
According to Meyers, the test strips being used on the armory
may not be as advanced as more expensive options. "They're not
going to tell us the percentage of lead but they're going to tell us
if it's there," he said.
Woos McCormic noted that over the counter test strips were an
acceptable form of testing saying, "They're actually pretty good.
They're more likely to give you a false positive." The trick, she
said is to test several layers of paint. Something Meyers said the
city is currently doing.
Meyers said there are two different issues noting that the lead
could be found in paint but lead dust could be present. "The paint,
you could touch a door from the 70s and it will have lead paint on
it but you'd have to lick your fi ngers, rub it against the wall and put
in your mouth several times," he said. "The lead dust, you mop it,
you clean it." He noted that the boxing class held in the basement
of the armory practices in the former gun range but he notes proper
procedure was followed in cleaning the space.
Cottage Grove Mayor Jeff Gowing reiterated that the city is not
testing on a continuous basis because it is currently operating as
if lead is present and following proper procedure. Mark McIntyre
of the EPA noted that without being privy the exact remodeling
plans for the armory the department could not comment directly
but warned that lead is a dangerous, toxic substance.
"The lead part of the range has
been closed down for over 50
years," Gowing said. "Until you
go in there with a jackhammer,
that lead is never going to be a
problem. You don’t need to keep
going in to monitor it when noth-
ing has changed to warrant that
need. Until you do something that
you need to test again, it’s a cost
you don’t need to incur." He con-
tinued, "I’m comfortable saying
that the city is following the stan-
dards that it needs to pursue this
restoration appropriately."
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Cottage Grove Sentinel
116 N. 6th St. • P.O. Box 35 • Cottage Grove, OR
(541) 942-3325 • fax (541) 942-3328