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Pilot Butte Master Plan Advisory Committee meets Feb. 28 in Bend - 02/18/19

BEND, Ore. – The Pilot Butte Master Plan Advisory Committee will be working to guide and develop recommendations to the update of the master plan for Pilot Butte State Scenic Viewpoint 9 a.m. – 4 p.m. Feb. 28 at the Bend Park and Recreation District Office, 799 SW Columbia St., Bend. The meeting is open to the public.

On the agenda: review information gathered by Oregon Parks and Recreation Department (OPRD) to inform advisory group process; hold workshop exercises to develop design or management recommendations for access, trails and various park zones; determine areas of agreement and questions for public input.

A detailed meeting agenda will be available online: pilotbuttemasterplan.com

No public comments will be accepted during the meeting. The next opportunity for in-person comment will be at a public meeting about the plan April 8 in Bend.

The 16 member advisory committee consists of volunteers from various local and statewide groups with an interest in outdoor recreation. A full list of committee member affiliations is available on the master plan website: pilotbuttemasterplan.com/q-and-a/

A park master plan guides the development and use of park facilities. It also provides guidelines for the protection and management of important natural, cultural and scenic resources within the park. Master plans are on a 20-year update cycle and are subject to final approval by the Oregon State Parks and Recreation Commission.

An initial draft master plan for Pilot Butte State Scenic Viewpoint, last updated in 1995, is expected to be completed by July 2019.

Learn more about the master plan at pilotbuttemasterplan.com.

Individuals that require special accommodations to attend the meeting must contact Rachel Hill, OPRD Park and Recreation Planner, at least three days in advance: 503-947-8618 or achel.Hill@oregon.gov">Rachel.Hill@oregon.gov.

Meeting set Feb. 27 to review hydrology study for Sitka Sedge State Natural Area - 02/14/19

PACIFIC CITY, Ore. — Oregon Parks and Recreation Department (OPRD) will host a public meeting to share results of a hydrology study for Sitka Sedge State Natural Area and Tierra del Mar. The meeting is scheduled from 2 – 3:30 p.m. Feb. 27 at the Kiawanda Community Center, 34600 Cape Kiwanda Dr., Pacific City.

The study, conducted by consultants Pacific Groundwater Group (PGG) and Environmental Science Associates (ESA), analyzes options for improving fish passage and dealing with a failing tide gate that’s part of a human-made dike on the property. The study takes into account state and federal fish passage requirements, as well as flood risks and groundwater effects of different dike and tide gate modification options.

The consultants created models that predict and compare groundwater levels according to different dike configuration scenarios during both average weather conditions and extreme storms. A summary of the study’s initial findings is at oregon.gov/oprd/NATRES/Pages/SitkaSedgeHydrology.aspx.

In the 1930s, a ½-mile dike with two tide gates was constructed to block tidewater and drain the area behind the dike. This also had the effect of preventing native fish — including coho, chum, steelhead and coastal cutthroat trout — from migrating upstream to historic spawning and rearing areas. The original tide gates failed at least 50 years ago and were replaced with the current tide gate. In the past 30 years, the current tide gate has deteriorated and now leaks, allowing some tidewater through and contributing to high water in the marsh during rainstorms. 

Sitka Sedge State Natural Area is a 357-acre state park in Tillamook County. The park includes ocean beach, dunes, forest, tidal marsh, freshwater marsh, shrublands and mudflats that together support an array of important and rare plants, wildlife and fish. OPRD is committed to managing the park in a way that balances natural resource health and visitor recreation, now and for decades to come.

OPRD purchased the area in 2014 using voter-dedicated Oregon Lottery funds and a grant from the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service. “State Natural Area” is a designation for protecting outstanding or important portions of Oregon’s ecosystems. For more information about Sitka Sedge State Natural Area, visit oregonstateparks.org.

Editors: Images and video of Sitka Sedge State Natural Area and the tide gate are located here.

State Advisory Committee on Historic Preservation meets February 22 in North Bend - 02/11/19

NORTH BEND, Ore. – The State Advisory Committee on Historic Preservation (SACHP) will meet at 9 a.m., Friday, Feb. 22 at the Mill Casino, 3201 Tremont Street, North Bend, OR 97459, and consider nominations to the National Register of Historic Places. The meeting is open to the public.

Friday’s meeting agenda: a presentation by the national register program coordinator, and hearings of one delisting request and three proposed nominations. Hearings will begin at 10:15 a.m. For specific hearing times, refer to the online agenda: www.oregon.gov/oprd/HCD/NATREG/Pages/nrhp_sachphome.aspx

The committee will review a delisting request for the John M. and Elizabeth Bates House in Lake Oswego. The committee will review three proposed nominations: the Roy E. and Hildur L. Amundsen House, Gresham; the Oregon Trail: La Grande to Hilgard Segment, Union County; and the Q’alya ta Kukwis shichdii me Traditional Cultural Property Historic District, Coos County.

Nominations recommended by the SACHP go to the National Park Service, which maintains the Register under the authority of the National Historic Preservation Act of 1966.

The SACHP is a nine-member governor-appointed citizen commission with credentials in many historic preservation-related fields.

The meeting site is accessible to people with disabilities. Special accommodations for the meeting may be made with at least three days of advance notice by calling (503) 986-0690.

More information about the National Register of Historic Places process is online at www.oregonheritage.org (click on “National Register” at left of page).

Trail closure at Fort Stevens State Park as forest health project continues - 02/08/19

WARRENTON, Ore. – An ongoing forest health project at Fort Stevens State Park has prompted the weekday closure of the park’s Sunset bike trail. The trail will be closed Monday - Friday to all visitor foot and pedal traffic Feb. 13 – April 30. The trail will reopen to visitors on weekends during that time.

Justin Parker, park manager at Fort Stevens State Park, says the weekday closure is necessary for visitor safety during the forest health project.

Sunset bike trail is the only trail affected by the project; all other trails at the park are expected to remain open while the work is completed.

The forest health and fire safety project at the park began Jan. 7 and is expected to continue through April. Crews will remove sick and dying trees in the mostly undeveloped south section of the park along Burma Road. Burma Road, used primarily as an emergency access route, will remain closed for the project’s duration.

Oregon Parks and Recreation Department (OPRD) hired Warrenton-based Custom Excavating to remove the sick trees, at a cost of $7,500.

Eagle 2
Eagle 2
Annual Eagle Watch event takes flight Feb. 23-24 (Photo) - 02/01/19

MADRAS, Ore.- The 24th annual Eagle Watch celebration will return Feb. 23-24 to Round Butte Overlook Park, 10 miles west of Madras. The event will feature activities that explore the natural and cultural significance of the eagles and other raptors that inhabit the Lake Billy Chinook area. The free two-day celebration runs 10 a.m.- 4 p.m. Saturday Feb. 23 and 10 a.m.-3:30 p.m. Sunday Feb. 24.

“The ecosystem that surrounds like Billy Chinook is fragile community of living and non-living things,” said Erin Bennet, park ranger with The Cove Palisades State Park. “Eagle Watch is a great way to discover how these birds fit in and what we can do to help as environmental stewards.”

Festivities will be held in “Eagle Village” at the Round Butte Overlook Park’s visitor center. On Saturday visitors can take pictures with event sponsor mascots, build bluebird houses, meet a live Great horned owl and view wild eagles.

Sunday’s activities include bird feeder building, wild eagle watching and a special tribal drumming and dancing presentation at 2 p.m. by the Quartz Creek Drummers and Dancers. A free hot dog lunch will be served both days, with donations supporting the Madras Little League program.

An estimated 11 pairs of Bald eagles and nine pairs of Golden eagles live in the wilds surrounding Lake Billy Chinook. With migratory eagles joining the resident population in late winter, the area is one of the largest gathering spots for eagles in Oregon.

Admission and parking at Round Butte Overlook Park is free. Attendees can participate in a daily silent auction and raffle, with proceeds benefiting the Oregon Eagle Foundation. Indian Fry bread will also be sold; proceeds will support local youth participation in the Simnasho rodeo. Only cash and checks will be accepted and there is no ATM is on site.

Eagle Watch is coordinated by the Oregon Parks and Recreation Department (OPRD) in conjunction with Portland General Electric (PGE), Crooked River Grassland and the Confederated Tribes of Warm Springs (CTWS).

For more information about the event, call The Cove Palisades State Park office at 541-546-3412 or visit oregonstateparks.org.

Oregon State Parks and Recreation Commission will meet Feb. 20-21 - 02/01/19

Independence, Ore. — The Oregon State Parks and Recreation Commission will hold its first meeting of the year Feb. 20-21 2019 in Independence, Oregon.

On Feb. 20, Commissioners will tour Polk County projects funded by grants that Oregon Parks and Recreation Department (OPRD) administers. An afternoon training and work session will follow at The Independence Event Center, 555 S. Main Street.

On Feb. 21, Commissioners will convene an executive session at 8:15 a.m. at The Independence Event Center to discuss real estate and legal issues. Executive sessions are closed to the public. A public business meeting will begin at 9:30 a.m. at the same location. The agenda includes requests to:

  • Approve purchase from the Western Rivers Conservancy of 117 riverfront acres to add to Cottonwood Canyon State Park in Sherman County, at a cost of $1.6 million.
  • Approve $1.5 million in County Opportunity Grants for local campground improvement projects. The grant program is funded by a portion of RV registration fees and helps counties improve or build new campgrounds.
  • Consider whether to recommend designation of a 17.5-mile stretch of the Nehalem River as an Oregon Scenic Waterway. If recommended, and if the Oregon Water Resources Commission concurs, the recommendation goes to Governor Kate Brown who will decide whether or not designate the river.

The draft agenda and meeting packet are listed at oregon.gov/oprd/Pages/commission.aspx. People who plan to present oral testimony are asked to provide 15 copies of their statement to Commission Assistant Denise Warburton burton@oregon.gov">denise.warburton@oregon.gov. Those needing special accommodations to attend should also contact Warburton by email, or call 503-986-0719, at least three days in advance.

The Oregon State Parks and Recreation Commission (oregon.gov/oprd/Pages/commission.aspx) promotes outdoor recreation and heritage by establishing policies, adopting rules, and setting the budget for the Oregon Parks and Recreation Department. The seven members are appointed by the Governor and confirmed by the Oregon Senate. They serve four-year terms and meet several times a year at locations across the state.

ATV Grant Subcommittee meets February 26-28 in Salem - 02/01/19

The Oregon Parks and Recreation Department’s (OPRD) All-Terrain Vehicle (ATV) Grant Subcommittee will meet at 8 a.m. – 5 p.m. Feb. 26-28 at Best Western-Mill Creek Inn in the Mill Creek Center Room at 3125 Ryan Drive SE, Salem. The meetings are open to the public.  

At the meetings, the subcommittee will review grant requests for projects related to ATV operation and maintenance, law enforcement, and acquisition. View the full agenda online.

  • Feb. 26: the subcommittee will hear ATV program updates in the morning; grant presentations will begin at 12:30 p.m.
  • Feb 27: grant presentations continue.
  • Feb. 28: grant presentations end at 10 a.m.; the subcommittee will finalize scores and recommendations 10 a.m. – noon.

The subcommittee will provide recommendations on grant funding to the OPRD director for referral to the Oregon State Parks and Recreation Commission.

The ATV Grant Program provides funding statewide for Off-Highway Vehicle (OHV) recreation. Grant funds come from ATV user permit sales and a percentage of gasoline tax money.  

More information about the state ATV program is available at oregonohv.org.

The meeting site is accessible to people with disabilities. Special accommodations may be arranged up to 72 hours in advance by calling 503-986-0980.

Grants available for historic properties and archaeology projects - 01/28/19

The State Historic Preservation Office is offering grants for work on historic properties and for archaeology projects. The annual grants fund up to $20,000 in matching funds for preservation projects.

 

The Preserving Oregon Grants fund preservation of historic buildings listed on the National Register of Historic Places. Work may include non-maintenance preservation like window repair, roof work, foundation projects, plumbing, and electrical needs. Recently funded projects include preservation of the 1924 Tourist Ferry in Astoria, the former schoolhouse in Creswell, IOOF cabins at Paulina Lake, Santiam Ski Pass Lodge, the Brown House in Stayton, the Tilly Jane Warming Hut on Mt. Hood, and YU Contemporary in Portland. The program also funds significant work contributing toward identifying, preserving and interpreting archaeological sites. An archaeology project was funded in Lincoln County.

 

The Diamonds in the Rough Grants help restore or reconstruct the facades of buildings that have been heavily altered over the years. These grants return buildings to their historic appearance and potentially qualify them for historic register designation (local or national). Façade projects in Cottage Grove, Dallas, Lebanon, Astoria, and The Dalles were funded in the last cycle.

 

The online grant application is simple to use and includes plenty of support.  Free grant workshops on project planning, grant writing, and using the online grant application will be available. A workshop will be held in Salem on March 19 and a webinar workshop will be available on March 15. Recorded trainings and tips are also online.

 

To learn more about the grants and workshops visit www.oregonheritage.org or contact Kuri Gill at i.Gill@oregon.gov">Kuri.Gill@oregon.gov or 503-986-0685.

Grants available for historic cemetery projects - 01/24/19

The Oregon Commission on Historic Cemeteries is offering grants for qualified historic cemeteries. The annual grants fund projects that preserve historic cemeteries. Projects funded in the past include marker repair workshops, fencing, signs, interpretive panels and brochures, security lighting, access improvements, records management, and more.

 

Awards typically range between $1,000 and $8,000, but have been higher. Anyone may apply for a grant. Projects must be related to historic cemeteries listed with the Oregon Commission on Historic Cemeteries. Recent projects include marker repair and workshops in several cemeteries, installations of signs and informational kiosks, a preservation plan, and a fence replacement.

 

“Our goal is to preserve Oregon’s historic cemeteries and offer support throughout the application process,” said historic cemeteries program coordinator Kuri Gill. Past projects include tree trimming in Coos, Jackson, and Polk Counties, fence repair and installation in Grant and Malheur Counties, and marker repair in Benton, Clackamas, and Wallowa Counties.

 

The online grant application is simple to use and includes plenty of support.  Free grant workshops on project planning, grant writing, and using the online grant application will be available. A workshop will be held in Salem on March 19 and a webinar workshop will be available on March 15. Recorded trainings and tips are also online.

 

State law established the seven-member historic cemeteries 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. To learn more about the grants or workshops visit www.oregonheritage.org or contact Kuri Gill at i.Gill@oregon.gov">Kuri.Gill@oregon.gov or 503-986-0685.

 

Historic cemeteries commission to meet February 8 - 01/24/19

The Oregon Commission on Historic Cemeteries will meet by conference call and in Salem at 1 p.m. on February 8. Its agenda includes discussion of the statewide historic cemetery clean-up day. The meeting is open to the public and the agenda includes an opportunity for public comment. The public is welcome to attend in person, while the commissioners will attend via conference call. Meet at 725 Summer St NE, room 124B in Salem.

 

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. For more information about commission activities, contact coordinator Kuri Gill at 503-986-0685 or by e-mail at i.gill@oregon.gov">kuri.gill@oregon.gov. The meeting site is accessible to people with disabilities. Special accommodations for the meeting – including translation services – may be made by calling (503) 986?0690 at least 72 hours prior to the start of the meeting.

 

For more information about the commission, visit www.oregonheritage.org