Polk County itemizer observer. (Dallas, Or) 1992-current, September 30, 2015, Image 1

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Page 12A
Volume 140, Issue 39
September 30, 2015
The annual Dallas Booster Club Auction returns
Saturday evening.
Tickets for the event, which begins at 6 p.m. at
the Dallas Nesmith Readiness Center, located
at12830 Westview Drive, are $25 and will be avail-
able at the door, organizer Michelle Nelson said.
This year’s auction will include a variety of items
to bid on, from house rentals at Sunriver to the
chance to be a wrestling coach during the
wrestling team’s Orange and Black scrimmage, to
local artwork, a pair of grills and gift cards.
Money raised supports Dallas High’s sports.
»Page 20A
JOLENE GUZMAN/ Itemizer-Observer
From left, Netanya Welch with Vitis Terra Vineyard Services, left, and owner Namaste Dave Masciorini inspect
grape coming off the vines at the vineyard outside of Dallas on Wednesday.
Hot season, big wines
Warm growing season should translate to flavorful wines in 2015
By Jolene Guzman
The Itemizer-Observer
morning of the first day of
fall, crisp and beautiful, set
the perfect scene for wine
grape harvesting at Na-
maste Vineyard outside of
The calm morning was
filled with the quick snip,
snip, snip of clippers while
workers deftly removing
dark purple pinot noir
grape clusters from the
vines. The grapes harvested
Sept. 23 will become the
v i n e y a rd’s “Pro s p e r i t y
Owner Dave Masciorini
was all smiles at the begin-
ning of the earliest harvest
on record at the vineyard.
“I will have everything
off before October, except
Riesling,” he said, sitting
abroad the tractor he uses
to move full containers of
grapes from Prosperity’s
hillside rows. “That’s never
happened before.”
By that point in the har-
vest, Masciorini was more
than pleased with the
growing season’s bounty.
JOLENE GUZMAN/ Itemizer-Observer
Namaste owner Dave Masciorini waits to haul grapes.
The hot and dry summer
prevented common
plagues of mildew and late-
season pressure from birds
seeking to make a meal out
of sweet grapes.
The rain that’s visited the
valley off and on since late
August was just enough to
help slow down ripening
and balance out the acids
and flavors.
“When the rain started to
come, if it would have gone
steady, we would have had
such an incredible year
with this limp little finish,”
he said. “We probably
wouldn’t have been able to
get it right.”
Masciorini said 2015 and
2014 have been as good as it
gets, even with record heat.
“If this were the new
norm — I don’t think it is —
but that would be fantas-
tic,” he said. “If this were
the new norm, I would be
able to sleep at night.”
Bryan Croft, winemaker
with Firesteed Cellars Win-
ery in Rickreall, said he,
too, is pleased with what
has come in so far since the
vineyard’s harvest that
began Sept. 6.
Firesteed’s harvest also is
the earliest on record,
thanks to an early bud
break and bloom during the
latter part of a mild winter.
Combined with the heat of
summer, Croft believes the
2015 wines will be very
drinkable right away.
“I think 2015 will be one
of those years that is going
to make a really big slash in
the (wine) magazines,”
Croft said. “It’s more of the
blockbuster than the indie
film. You don’t have to wait
In contrast, cooler years
create wines with more
subtle flavors and more
acid, he said. Those wines
typically age well as flavors
develop over time. This
year’s vintage will be the
“You know they are going
to be delicious (now),”
Croft said.
The season wasn’t per-
fect, though.
See WINE, Page 8A
No easy fix for SW Polk Fire’s budget woes
With eight freshmen and five sophomores, Falls
City’s volleyball team has seen a resurgence in
numbers. The dramatic increase also means the
Mountaineers are among the youngest teams in
the Casco League.
Senior Allison Kidd has seen the volleyball squad
grow from six players in 2014 to more than 20 in
For some, high school athletics is a serious mat-
ter — a place where student-athletes should focus
only on the task at hand. Kidd doesn’t subscribe to
that line of thinking.
»Page 12A
The after-school program at Monmouth Inde-
pendence YMCA, Go Club, is more than just a baby
sitting service, said executive director Natascha
“It’s not just that we’re making sure your child is
safe and dry and feeding them,” she said. “It really is
a very different program than what it’s been in the
past. We’re considering ourselves more of an exten-
sion of the school day.”
There’s plenty of play time, especially if it’s nice
Monday afternoon, about a dozen kids chased
each other on the playground.
»Page 20A
A new app for smartphones makes it easier than
ever to find out more about historic buildings in
the city of Monmouth.
The app, Historic Monmouth Walking Tour, is
available for both iPhones and Google formats. It
cost about $6,000, which was paid for through a
grant, said Mark Fancey, Monmouth community
development manager.
Once downloaded, the app provides users with
information, pictures and history about 29 historic
sites in Monmouth, including Western Oregon Uni-
»Page 2A
By Jolene Guzman
The Itemizer-Observer
least nine years, Southwest
Polk Rural Fire Protection Dis-
trict has spent more money
than it has levied in taxes.
Not because of frivolous
spending, said SW Polk’s Fire
Chief Fred Hertel — also Dal-
las Fire & EMS’ chief — but
rather the cost of doing busi-
ness has simply overwhelmed
the district’s tax rate.
Measures 47 and 50, passed
by voters in the late 1990s, at-
tempted to rein in govern-
ment spending by rolling back
tax rates to 1993 levels.
Polk County mental health workers and adminis-
tration are in a “cooling off” period after unsuccess-
ful negotiations over wages.
“Basically, we’ve been bargaining with the coun-
ty since June,” said Dustin Breitwieser, mental
health counselor and member of the bargaining
unit for American Federation of State, County and
Municipal Employees Local 173. “We have not been
able to reach a settlement. They’re taking a hard
line. They cited political reasons for not wanting to
give us a raise. They won’t budget off 1.5 percent
(cost-of-living adjustment) with us.”
»Page 2A
Graphic by KATHY HUGGINS/ Itemizer-Observer
Grab a yoga mat
and head to Rogue
Farms Hopyard in
Independence for
some relaxation in
the bines.
6 p.m. Free.
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Lo: 47
It’s October, and
that means it’s
Breast Cancer
Awareness month.
Find out what you
can do to prevent
cancer at cancer.org.
Imani Milele, a
Ugandan children’s
choir, will perform at
First Christian in Dal-
las to raise money
for African orphans.
6:30 p.m. Free.
Uninsured? Receive
free medical and
mental health care
at the Polk Commu-
nity Free Clinic at
Trinity Lutheran.
7-11 a.m. Free.
Practice your
singing with free
lessons for all ages
at St. Thomas Epis-
copal Church in Dal-
1:30-3 p.m. Free.
Eating at Dairy
Queen will help stu-
dents in Monrovia,
Liberia, build book-
cases and buy books
for a new library.
5-8 p.m. Cost varies .
Author Steve Arndt
will talk about Ore-
gon Ghost Towns at
the Monmouth
Public Library dur-
ing a presentation.
6 p.m. Free.
Partly Sunny
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Mostly Sunny
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Partly Cloudy
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Partly Cloudy
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