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Camp for free on June 6 for Oregon State Parks Day - 05/27/15
State parks throughout Oregon invite the public to camp and play for free the weekend of June 6-7 in celebration of State Parks Day and Free Fishing Weekend.

Camping is free the night of June 6 in traditional sites--full hookup (sewer, electricity and water), electrical hookup (electricity and water), and tent sites. Yurts, cabins and tepees are available at regular price. Parking will also be free June 6-7 at the 26 parks that charge a day-use parking fee.

Campsite reservations may be made by calling 800-452-5687 before 5 p.m. June 5. Or, reserve online at www.oregonstateparks.org. Of the 52 state park campgrounds, 40 take reservations.

"State Parks Day is our chance to say 'thank you' to our visitors," said Oregon Parks and Recreation Department spokesman Richard Walkoski. "Free camping and day use on the first Saturday in June has become a big tradition for visitors-- and for our staff."

Visitors will also be able to fish, crab and clam without a license June 6-7 for Oregon's Free Fishing Weekend, hosted by the Oregon Department of Fish and Wildlife (ODFW). ODFW will provide the gear, bait and instructions at some state parks, including Champoeg, Detroit Lake, Jessie Honeyman and parks in the Columbia River Gorge. All events are listed at dfw.state.or.us/education/angling/free_fishing.

Campers and visitors are encouraged to submit Instagram photos of their park adventures throughout the weekend and this summer with #InventAdventure.

The Oregon State Legislature established Oregon State Parks Day in 1997 to focus public attention on Oregon's state park system. The event is always the first Saturday in June.

Parks throughout the state will host activities including guided hikes, open houses, tours, special barbecues and guest appearances by J.R. Beaver, Oregon's State Park mascot.

Silver Falls State Park east of Salem will host a free barbecue, guided waterfall tour and its annual Foot Race Challenge, with a 5K, 6-mile and kids race. Stub Stewart State Park west of Portland will offer a free lunch at the Hilltop Day-Use Area, along with a guided hike, bike ride and orienting workshop.

For a complete list of events, go to oregonstateparks.org and click on "Things to Do."
Two state heritage boards to meet June 5 by phone - 05/22/15
Two state heritage boards will meet separately June 5 by phone. Preliminary agendas with participation information are available on commission websites at www.oregonheritage.org

These meetings of the Oregon Heritage Commission and the Oregon Commission on Historic Cemeteries are open to the public. Meetings are accessible to people with disabilities. Special accommodations may be arranged up to 72 hours in advance of the meeting by calling 503-986-0690.

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The Oregon Heritage Commission agenda includes approval of minutes from two previous meetings and approval of Oregon Museum grants. The commission will meet at 10 a.m. A public listening room will be available at the Oregon Parks and Recreation Department offices, 725 Summer St. NE, Salem.

The Heritage Commission is comprised of nine people representing Oregon's heritage and geographical diversity who have been appointed by the Governor. There are nine advisory representatives from state agencies and statewide organizations. The mission of the Oregon Heritage Commission is to secure, sustain, and enhance Oregon's heritage by ensuring coordination of heritage initiatives by public and private organizations; advocacy on its behalf; education of the public about its extent and value; and promotion and celebration of its diversity. For more information, contact coordinator Kyle Jansson at 503-986-0673 or kyle.jansson@oregon.gov .

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The Oregon Commission on Historic Cemeteries agenda includes approval of previous meeting minutes and Historic Cemeteries Grants. The meeting will begin at 1 p.m. The public may listen to the meeting by 1-877-402-9757 and then enter the access code 46053

State law established the seven-member Commission to maintain a listing of all historic cemeteries and gravesites in Oregon; promote public education on the significance of historic cemeteries; and help obtain financial and technical assistance for restoring, improving and maintaining their appearances. More information about commission activities, contact coordinator Kuri Gill at 503-986-0685 or by e-mail at kuri.gill@oregon.gov

For more information about both commissions, visit www.oregonheritage.org
Attached Media Files: News release
Public meeting to discuss safely crossing Highway 101 in Honeyman State Park - 05/20/15
Florence, OR--Providing safe pedestrian crossing of Highway 101 in Honeyman State Park will be among the topics discussed at a public meeting set for 5:30-7:30 p.m. on May 27 at the Siuslaw Public Library Bromey Room, 1460 9th St., Florence.

Highway 101 bisects the park, with trails on both sides of the highway and a pedestrian overpass connecting them. Oregon Parks and Recreation Department recently reviewed the status of an unofficial trail that hikers and runners use to cross the highway at grade. Officials are expanding their review to cover the entire trail system and how best to connect the two sides of the park, taking into consideration the pedestrian overpass that opened in 2005.

The meeting will be an opportunity for trail users to share ideas on safely crossing the highway, best routes, trailheads, destinations and recreation needs. Comments will be used to update and refine the preliminary concepts laid out for the trail system in the 2009 master plan.

The public is also invited to comment online at honeymanstatepark.com; by email at jaime.english@oregon.gov; by phone at 503-986-0723; or by mailing written comments to Jaime English, OPRD, 725 Summer St. NE, Suite C, Salem, OR 97301.
David and Marianne Ott House
David and Marianne Ott House
David and Marianne Ott House listed in the National Register of Historic Places (Photo) - 05/14/15
The David and Marianne Ott House, constructed in 1952, is one of famed Pacific Northwest architect John W. Storrs' earliest residences in the Northwest Regional style. Storrs, who practiced in Oregon from 1949 through the late 1970s, moved to Portland after finishing graduate studies in architecture at Yale University. He soon set up his own practice, primarily designing residences. Storrs knew Marianne Ott's parents, Walter H. and Florence Holmes Gerke, who were prominent landscape architects in the Portland area, both socially and professionally. The Gerkes introduced Storrs to the Otts, and they hired him to design their house.

Storrs became known throughout western Oregon for his interpretation of the Northwest Regional style expressed in everything from residences to large scale resorts. He is perhaps best known today for his later work, which includes the Portland Garden Club; Salishan Lodge in Gleneden Beach, Oregon; and the Western Forestry Center in Portland's Washington Park. The Ott House is one of Storrs early houses and one of the few from this era that retains its historic character. It is his only known house to have been designed in a semi-rural location. The Otts bought the property because of the land associated with it, which was in agriculture. It retains this semi-rural ambience today, and the land is still used for agriculture. Marianne Ott still lives in the house.

Oregon's State Advisory Committee on Historic Preservation recommended the building's nomination in their February 2015 meeting. It is one of eight historic properties in Gresham that are individually listed in the National Register, and one of two Modern, post-war houses. The National Register is a list maintained by the National Park Service under the authority of the National Historic Preservation Act of 1966.

More information about the National Register and recent Oregon lists is online at www.oregonheritage.org (click on "National Register" at left of page).
Bright yellow, numbered signs help rescue teams locate emergencies on the beach
Bright yellow, numbered signs help rescue teams locate emergencies on the beach
Oregon Coast is better prepared for emergencies, thanks to safety signs (Photo) - 05/08/15
Beachgoers should watch for new numbered signs along the shore, part of a beach safety project coordinated by the Oregon Parks and Recreation Department (OPRD) to help emergency personnel respond quickly.

Since 2008, OPRD has installed bright yellow signs with bold black letters at state, county and federal beach accesses from the Columbia River jetty to Crissey Field at the California border. Numbered 1 through 197, the signs are designed to be easily visible by beachgoers who can relay the number to a 911 dispatcher in an emergency. Dispatchers have GPS information needed to direct first responders quickly to the emergency.

"It can be confusing locating a victim offshore or on the beach. The beach numbered signs have helped tremendously in our ability to respond promptly in an emergency," said North Lincoln Fire & Rescue Captain Jim Kusz, a member of the planning committee that began meeting in 2004. "The signs have proven to be an excellent aid for our Water Rescue Team and in coordinating our rescue efforts with United States Coast Guard and other agencies."

In addition to the numbered signs, OPRD has also installed more than 200 beach safety signs at beach access paths that warn visitors of hazards such as rip currents and sneaker waves. The signs also list prohibited activities including littering and lighting fireworks. The signs convey information using internationally-recognized symbols.

"Unfortunately, accidents happen on the beach. Rolling logs, rip tides and unstable cliffs are all potentially dangerous," said Calum Stevenson, Ocean Shore Specialist for OPRD. "Our goal was to clearly convey information that will keep visitors safe, like staying back from cliff edges and staying off logs. At the same time, we also aimed to reduce sign clutter and create a consistent and professional message from north to south."

Near population centers, the signs are as close as ?1/4 mile apart. In more remote areas the signs are up to two miles apart or more where there are fewer beach accesses.

A committee of representatives from OPRD, North Lincoln Fire & Rescue, local coastal communities and members of the public began meeting in 2004 to discuss beach safety signs. OPRD installed the first signs in November 2008 in Lincoln City and Devils Lake. To date, the department has installed 424 signs along nearly the entire coast, except for some private accesses and cities that may come on board later. The 45 miles under U.S. Forest Service (USFS) jurisdiction between Florence and Coos Bay is also unsigned. OPRD is currently working with the USFS to resolve archaeological and other issues on federal land before proceeding with the project.

The $78,000 project was funded by a combination of visitor fees and Oregon lottery dollars that are dedicated to state parks. Some coastal cities have shared in the cost of creating and installing signs. Private communities, such as Salishan in Lincoln City are paying for their own signs.
Saturn, Jupiter and Venus to make stunning appearances during 16th annual Prineville Reservoir Star Party on May 16 - 05/06/15
Prineville, OR - Viewings of three brightly lit planets will be the highlight of a free Star Party at Prineville Reservoir State Park on Saturday, May 16. Saturn, with its striking rings, will be almost fully tilted towards earth and illuminated by the sun, making this mystical planet the brightest in eight years. Massive Jupiter will showcase its cloud bands and four bright moons, and Venus will appear as a brilliant thin crescent.

The Star Party begins at 1 p.m. in the day-use area with a variety of astronomy-related exhibits and activities for all ages. Visitors will be able to peer through "Big Doug," the park's 16-inch telescope. Solar telescopes will also be available during the day, allowing safe viewing of solar flares on the surface of the sun. Both professional and amateur astronomers will be on hand starting at dusk to help guide viewers in using the different types of telescopes and to point out significant features in the night sky. In addition, viewers will get a chance to witness colorful star clusters, nebulae (interstellar clouds of dust and gases), distant galaxies and a host of deep sky objects.

Volunteers from the Oregon Observatory at Sunriver are returning to co-sponsor the annual Star Party along with the Oregon Parks and Recreation Department (OPRD). The date was selected due to the combination of these nighttime phenomena and the fact that May's new moon will be just two nights later.

"With no moonlight to interfere with viewing, visitors can take full advantage of the starry night skies that are so well-known in this area," said Jill Nishball, OPRD Visitor Experiences Coordinator for the eastern half of the state. "Prineville Reservoir State Park--a prime spot along the lake surrounded by low mountains--is particularly well-known by astronomers as an excellent location for stargazing."

For visitors wishing to stay through the night, Prineville Reservoir State Park offers nearly 100 campsites for both RVs and tents, as well as five deluxe cabins at the main campground. All can be reserved online at www.oregonstateparks.org or by phone at 1-800-452-5687. Another 30 electrical hookup sites in the park's Jasper Point campground are available on a first-come, first-served basis.

The park is located 16 miles southeast of Prineville on Southeast Juniper Canyon Road. More park information and directions are available at: www.oregonstateparks.org/
Preservation Month Fair May 28 at State Capitol - 05/04/15
May is National Historic Preservation Month and for Oregon communities throughout the state it's an opportunity to reflect on significant places, artifacts, and collections that help tell the stories of our past as well as to recognize contributions that individuals and organizations preserve those stories and places.

Celebrate National Historic Preservation Month with 28 heritage organizations displaying historic military vehicles, artifacts, and engaging exhibits that tell Oregon's story and highlight the contributions of individuals and organizations to local preservation projects.

On Thursday, May 28, Heritage Programs, a division of the Oregon Parks and Recreation Department, will host the 7th Annual Preservation Month Fair at the State Capitol State Park in Salem. Community organizations and several state agencies will highlight the history of their institutions and their work to preserve important sites related to historic events, persons, and places.

The event will be held from 11 a.m.-1 p.m. on the grounds of the State Capitol on the north side of Court Street, opposite the Capitol building. It is free and open to the public.

Participating exhibitors include the Willamette Heritage Center; Salem Landmarks Commission; Historic Deepwood Estate; Bush House Museum; Salem Pioneer Cemetery; Salem Museum of Mental Health; Oregon Military Museum and Historical Outreach Foundation; Oregon Aviation Historical Society; Philip Foster Farm National Historic Site; Friends of Timberline Lodge; Friends of the Oregon Caves Chateau; Oregon Black Pioneers; Hoover-Minthorn House Museum; Frank Lloyd Wright's Gordon House; Restore Oregon; University of Oregon Museum of Natural and Cultural History; Oregon State Parks with friends groups from Silver Falls and Champoeg State Parks and the Oregon Historic Trails Advisory Commission; Oregon Cultural Trust; Oregon Department of Forestry; Oregon Department of Transportation; Oregon State Capitol Foundation; Oregon State Archives, and the Oregon State Library.

The displays will include an operating World War II M3A1 Stuart Light Tank and a Korean War Jeep. A free tour of the Capitol dome will begin at 11:30 a.m. at the information kiosk in the Capitol.
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Attached Media Files: news release