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The Light of his Life: Roger Beck’s creativity with wood shine through, despite his Parkinson’s

Roger Beck has 4,000 square feet of space in his wood shop, but only 248 square feet in the housetruck he used to live in. One section of his woodshop is devoted to lamps fabricated out of small wooden tiles glued together, a past-time which Beck considers therapy for his Parkinson’s, because of the fine motor skills they take to create.

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Diggin' It: Purple hits the garden

At this time of year when I’m dreaming of summer garden days but the weather is still not quite as hospitable as I’d prefer, I like to scope out new plants and possibilities for my garden. Although I’m more drawn to ornamentals, it’s also fun to see the new and unusual edibles that are out there as well. Recently, while perusing various seed company websites, I was particularly drawn to purple vegetable plants.

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Envision Eugene: What will Eugene look like 20 years from now?

On a cold and rainy winter day — or freezing and icy, as this year has gone — waiting for a bus or walking some distance to the grocery store or a doctor’s appointment is not a very enjoyable thing to do. Eric Brown, assistant planner with the City of Eugene Planning Department, understands this. That’s why livability is a big part of the city of Eugene’s “Envision Eugene” project, which seeks to help Eugene plan and grow for the future.

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Powder trip: Snowshoeing is the perfect way to embrace the mountain snow

If you love hiking in the high country — viewing miles of breath-taking vistas, breathing in the clean mountain air and enjoying the quiet enchantment of the forest — don’t let the winter snow keep you indoors until the spring thaw. Make this the year you try snowshoeing.

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Monmouth Senior Center finally finishes highly-anticipated expansion

At the Monmouth Senior Center, everyone is made to feel welcome. “The senior community needs someone to care, make them feel important, give them a place where they can fellowship, have fun, increase their knowledge, provide ways to keep their bodies fit, and even have a place to volunteer so they know they are still needed,” says Sue Teal, director. “The center serves 55 and older, but also is considered a community center that allows people to rent the facility or hold classes for younger adults.”

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After years of service Lloyd Smalling still enjoys helping others

When he opens his front door, 93-year-old Lloyd Smalling is wearing a blue World War II Veteran baseball cap. It’s not long before he begins talking about his photos on display.

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Oregon, my Oregon: How much do you know about our state’s earliest beginnings?

This month, we celebrate the 158th anniversary of Oregon’s statehood. But back when Oregon got its start, some writers opined about its natural beauties, and others weren’t sure the territory was ready to become the 33rd state.

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Significant leaders in Oregon history

With Oregonians so divided over slavery and other issues, it’s natural that groups of friends were divided as well. These five were the most important people in establishing our new state. All were Democrats except Jesse Applegate and had worked together politically but their differences ultimately divided them. Jesse Applegate arrived in Oregon in 1843. A Democrat, he opposed slavery so strongly he walked out of the state constitutional convention. He had a reputation as brilliant but stubborn. He moved from Polk County to Yoncalla with two famous brothers and families.

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Latino Business Alliance has essential networking opportunities

Restaurateur Carlos Pineda knows first-hand how networking helps to keep small businesses afloat. “My wife and I own El Patrón Mexican Grill,” Pineda says of his Keizer restaurant. “We opened about two years ago, and it’s been a difficult journey to start, but it’s been a fun ride so far.” At his restaurant, Pineda is living his dream of making people happy with lots of “good, fresh and authentic” Mexican food.

Tips for heating your home safely

With the cold weather settled in, State Fire Marshal Jim Walker is urging Oregonians to use heating appliances wisely.

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DIGGIN' IT: Beware of ‘fake’ news

If you engage in social media at all you’ve likely seen fake news sites. Maybe you’ve even read a few and thought, wow, is that for real? After all, they’re not called “click bait” for nothing. After the election last November, legitimate news sources warned us of fake news sources and offered tips to keep us from being duped and perpetuating the sensationalism. Well, it might surprise you that there is a lot of fake gardening news out there, too. Mainly it comes in the form of advice dispersed through legitimate-looking websites and books from probably well-meaning gardening experts. Google “garden myths” and be amazed.

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Boomers in business

Older adults are using local resources to help them get a new business off the ground

A growing number of workers aged 50 and older are reinventing themselves by starting their own business. They do so for a variety of reasons, from not having enough savings in retirement, to just doing what they want instead of working for a paycheck. There are many resources that help such individuals get their businesses off the ground or work through the challenges of being self-employed.

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A tale of two houses: Historic homes don’t always get the protection they deserve

It’s not easy being an old house. Not only are there the usual aches and pains of age — dry rot, outdated plumbing, foundation troubles — but, for houses in urban areas, there is the increasing threat of economic pressures to demolish and replace. When these older houses disappear, we destroy a bit of history and lose a part of our cultural heritage. Here is a tale of two historical houses sharing a family connection and similar past, but far different futures.

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Albany art exhibit pays tribute to days gone by

An art exhibit at the Albany Public Library pays tribute to the “generous” Vida Bullis, a former dahlia farm owner who lived to be 97 years old.

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Savoring the flavor: Corvallis cooking class mixes the food, culture of India

American appetites used to be primed for TV dinners, casseroles and fast food. College students still live on ramen, and kids seem to be addicted to burgers and fries. But over the last few decades, our palates appear to be looking toward more exotic foods, from sushi to Indian cuisine.

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