Kinder Kick Off; Lane County Joins Climate Change Plan; Florence City Council Meeting; Lane County Joins Climate Change Plan; Florence City Council Meeting; Slipper Drive; COVID-19

Kinder Kick Off

Teachers at Siuslaw Middle School are already gearing up for the fall with their Kinder Kick Off on Thursday May 5th.  Crystal Osburn says it a great time to familiarize the young ones with the facility and reduce some of the first day jitters.

“Sometimes it’s more for the parents than it is for the Kids, but we get to allow everyone on campus and again takes classroom tours, meet the teacher, get free dinner.”

Osburn says one of the biggest questions parents have is when can their child begin Kindergarten.

“They have to be 5 years of age before September 1st of 2022.”

She says it is exciting to see new families and new faces at the school.  enrollment is down slightly according to Osburn who says some parents are still considering online alternatives, but that the school is ready and able to take on all students.  Class sizes for Kindergarten consist of 18 to 21 students with 1 teacher and one aide per class.

Lane County Joins Climate Change Plan

Lane County has jumped aboard the Climate Change bandwagon.  In a 4-1 vote commissioners adopted a comprehensive county-wide plan to address climate change.  The plan includes 10 high-impact practices to reduce green house gas emissions cost-effectively.  Commissioners hope this plan will help the county realize up to 71% of its goal of being carbon neutral by 2040.  Leaving 29% to be addressed through newly developed technologies.  The plan includes decarbonizing the electrical grid, replacing gas engine vehicles with electric and implementing renewable diesel.  Commissioner Chair Pat Farr said in a release that the plan provides a broad framework for reducing greenhouse emissions while still addressing the need of business and low-income residents.  County commissioners have been working on the plan since August of 2020.

Florence City Council Meeting

The City of Florence moved forward with several items on their agenda at last night’s City Council meeting including approving the street closure for the Rhododendron Festival Vendor Fair and approving their consent agenda which includes the purchase of a radio repeater to increase emergency communications across Florence and west Lane County.  The council also heard from Commander John Pitcher with the Florence Police department on amendments to Lane County’s Deadly Physical Force Amendment that will impact Florence police.  The primary change to the county’s plan include strong verbiage on how and when deadly force can be implemented.

“If there is a reasonable opportunity before using deadly force you have to consider alternatives to that force; the officer has to give a verbal warning that deadly force may be used; and you have to give that person time to comply.”

City council approved accepting the amended plan unanimously.

Slipper Drive

Cinderella and Cinderfella slipper drive underway is underway until the end of this month to collect new slippers for seniors in our area.  Organizer Laura Wilson has seen the need for slippers at some of the area assisted living facilities and in private residences.  But, she says, it’s not just about the footwear.

It’s also a reachout to let them know someone’s thinking about them;  that their community cares for them.” 

Wilson says new slippers can be dropped off at her office, Windermere Real Estate.  There are nine-other collection sites in the community:  Florence Chamber Visitor Center; City Lights Cinemas; Homegrown Public House; Cascade Escrow and Title; Austentatious; Mapleton Caffienation Station; Twin Lakes Store; The Brown Hen and Florence Surf Company.   Slippers will be distributed to Regency, Spruce Point, and New Friends and through the Soup Brigade.


COVID-19 numbers for Florence increased by 2 over the holiday weekend (1512).  Lane County reported 145 new cases since Thursday of last week and the State of Oregon reported 1529 new cases.  Statewide the 7 day average of new cases rose to 519.6