12 May 2015
Junior Parade celebrates six-plus decades
One regular feature of more than half of the 108 annual Rhododendron Festivals has been the Junior Parade. Local volunteer firefighters have been organizing it for the past 30 years and this year is no different. Siuslaw Valley Fire Marshall Sean Barrett:
Sean Barrett – “It’ll run from Miller Park to the high school and we’re inviting every kid, youth in the community, Mapleton, Florence, anywhere in the area, to bring dogs, cats, floats, bikes… whatever they like to do and it’ll be their own parade.”
No pre-registration is required; there’s no entry fee; and very few rules are applied other than having fun.
Staging begins at 11 AM Saturday at Miller Park. At straight up noon, led by a procession of fire engines, the parade rolls north on Oak Street and ends at the high school. That’s where members of the Florence Kiwanis will be on hand to provide games and treats for the younger kids.
Newborn sea lion pup lost; mom still in distress
At Sea Lion Caves they’re continuing to keep an eye on a female sea lion that is tangled in what appears to be a sport salmon fishing rig. General Manager Boomer Wright said the sea lion was perched on a rock island in the cave Sunday with a hook in her mouth and fishing line wrapped around a flipper. She gave birth to a pup on Mother’s Day, but Wright said sometime Monday the pup disappeared. He fears that it died.
Wright has spoken with biologists at Newport’s Hatfield Marine Science Center and they say there is nothing that can be done at this time. The sea lion is in a spot that is impossible to get to safely.
Wright also said the sea lion appears to be thinner than what you would expect, indicating that she’s not been able to feed.
He said hopefully the hook will wear a hole large enough so that it will fall out and she’ll be able to disentangle herself. Until then, they’ll continue to monitor the situation.
New signs at beach accesses aim to help speed emergency response
Numbered, neon-green signs have been popping up along the Oregon coast as part of a program to help visitors identify their location in an emergency.
North Lincoln Fire & Rescue Captain Jim Kusz told The Oregonian that many tourists don’t know a specific beach’s name or other reference points. A caller to 9-1-1 can now, for example, say they see a big sign with the number 135, and emergency responders know where to go.
The signs stretch for more than 360 miles, from the tip of Fort Stevens State Park in the north to Crissey Field State Park at the California state line. Other safety signs warn visitors of the dangers of rip currents, sneaker waves and rolling logs.
Glenn Butler Court and Richard Whitmore Mall
School board to consider naming
A proposal to name two facilities at Siuslaw High School in memory of former administrators will be considered this week by the Siuslaw School Board.
In February, the Siuslaw Athletic Booster Club approached the district about naming the basketball court in the gym after long time superintendent Glenn Butler. Butler passed away last year. Dick Whitmore, the high school principal for 18 years, passed away three years ago. The Boosters would like to name the mall area at the high school in his memory.
The school district has a policy that allows for such naming. A special committee has been meeting for several weeks. They’ll present their findings to the school board Wednesday evening.
Siuslaw finishes well at Ford/Triple-A Auto Skills again
Two students at Siuslaw High School are among the top auto tech students in the state. Jeff Anderson and Kyle Jones finished in fourth place at last week’s Triple-A/Ford Auto Skills Competition at Mt. Hood Community College.
The pair had a limited time to find and repair a series of intentional flaws in a 2015 Ford Fiesta.
A team from Vale found and fixed the most problems to win the state competition. They’ll represent Oregon in the national competition this summer in Dearborn, Michigan.
Teams from Springfield High School and McNary High School in Keizer were second and third.
Elected officials to ride Rhody Express regularly
Members of the Florence City Council will be riding the Rhody Express once a month. The second Wednesday of each month a different councilor, or the mayor, will be riding the bus between 10:30 and 12:30. Tomorrow will be the inaugural “Ride with a Councilor”. Councilor Susy Lacer will have an ear tuned while she rides. Lacer wants to hear suggestions and will answer questions.
It won’t be for free though. You’ll have to pay the normal fare… one dollar for a single trip or two-dollars for the entire day.
The Rhody Express runs on an hourly basis between ten AM and six PM weekdays in Florence. Information on the routes and other services are available at the City of Florence website.