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You know those puzzles where you push one piece out of the way in order to place another? 

It all started out by pushing the old block-sized Eugene City Hall out of the way to make way for the new. Putting a new four-story, 30,000 square foot City Hall on the southwest corner quarter of that old block left behind three quarters of a blank block to fill. 

• Guns and hate. We are so tired of being speechless about mass murders. The June 12 attack on the gay and Latinx (aka Latino/a) community at a gay Orlando nightclub by an American man of Afghan heritage has been called a case of “homegrown terrorism.” Look at Orlando (current toll 49 dead, more than 50 wounded), look at San Bernardino, (14 dead, 20 wounded), Colorado (12 dead, 58 wounded), Newtown (28 dead, 2 wounded). All massacres with assault-style rifles. This was an act of hate at a place the queer community should have felt safe.

For professional dancer and choreographer Brad Garner, inspiration comes directly from community.

“I’m inspired by community and the relationships among members of a community,” says Garner, whose dance company GARNERDANCES premieres Strings! An Evening of Dance at Oregon Contemporary Theatre June 17-18. 

Eugene’s own hula school, Na Pua O Hawai’i Nei (The Flowers of Hawai’i), presents its annual ho’ike exhibition June 25 at Cascade Middle School auditorium, 1525 Echo Hollow Road. All classes will perform, from preschoolers through kupuna (elders). 

• Between 4 and 6 pm on June 19, the Peace and Dignity Indigenous Runners will be stopping in Eugene at the Lane Community College Longhouse. “Peace and Dignity Journeys are spiritual runs that embody the prophecy of the Eagle and Condor,” according to information from local organizers.

The Eugene City Council, Lane County Commission, Lane Community College and 4J are all on board with diverting your tax dollars to benefit private property and businesses in the Downtown Urban Renewal District (DTURD) — even though you paid those taxes assuming you were funding education, public safety, libraries, parks and other essential services.

Not every garden in the Willamette Valley has super river-bottom silty loam. If your soil sets up like concrete when it’s dry it probably holds lots of moisture in the winter. Some wonderful summer blooming perennials have a problem with that. I’m thinking in particular of the many ravishing cultivars of agastache (ag-ah-STAK-ee) and salvia that have hit the market in recent decades. Lots of them need really good drainage to over-winter reliably in our region. 

In the spring of 2015, Samantha Wise took a job delivering The Register-Guard newspaper. She had a 5-mile route that took four hours to walk in the early morning. “I had painful knees from jogging,” she says. “I learned about barefooting, and I went without shoes around the house and doing errands.” 

What historically informed European musicians have done for Baroque music, James Ralph does for American musical theater. For years, the Oregon Festival of American Music (OFAM) impresario has been painstakingly supervising the reconstruction of the original scores of George and Ira Gershwin’s classic 1920s musicals, which have been performed for decades only in relatively bastardized remakes for stage or screen. 

California’s Sonny & The Sunsets current release, Moods Baby Moods, is a contender for 2016’s album of the year. The record’s elements are familiar: ’70s and ’80s English New Wave and New York art-pop grooves mix with Lee Scratch Perry-style studio experimentation and wubba-wubba dub atmosphere.

Bravo, Scapino! Based on Molière’s 1671 comedy Les Fourberies de Scapin, Cottage Theatre’s presentation of Scapino! — directed by George Comstock — is a quirky tale of love and mischief. The play is set in Naples, and the frantic plot is fairly easy to follow, assuming you’ve had enough coffee that day. 

TERRORIST ACT

Finally a homophobic, religion-based murder of American gay men and women has been labeled “terrorism.” Islam is no worse than Protestant Christianity in this regard.

Tim Hilton, Springfield

 

PREVENT VIOLENCE

My heart is with the victims and survivors of the massacre in Orlando, Florida, an act of terror now being reported as the worst mass shooting in U.S. history.

I’ve been dating a nice guy for a month or so. Sex is good, and we’re faulty compatible in other ways, too. He told me he likes to wear diapers. He said he doesn’t want me to do it with him, but that every once in a while he likes to wear them because it makes him feel “safe.” He said that this odd behavior isn’t sexual for him, but I have trouble believing him. I’m not sure how I feel about this. He also said that it embarrasses him and he wishes it wasn’t something he needed.

War is hell, no doubt. But for all those nameless, faceless refugees escaping the war at home, the realities of relocation can plunge them into a new kind of nightmare, one almost as bloody and chaotic.

In Jacques Audiard’s latest film, Dheepan, a trio of refugees fleeing war-torn Sri Lanka wind up in a French slum, where they are forced, literally, to fight for their lives.

Sniffing out what you shouldn’t miss in the arts this week

The current Republican front-runner has vowed, if elected president, he will build a wall along America’s southern border, claiming its construction would be done at Mexico’s expense.

Donald Trump has accused Mexico of “sending people that have lots of problems, and they’re bringing those problems with us.”

The presumptive Republican nominee also accused a community that makes up 12.5 percent of Oregon’s population and 17.4 percent of the nation’s population of “bringing drugs” in his 2015 presidential announcement speech. “They’re bringing drugs. They’re bringing crime. They’re rapists. And some, I assume, are good people.”

John Belcher has a simple dream: to walk down his street to a neighborhood natural foods market and buy cheese.

Belcher, co-chair of the River Road Community organization, is working with members of the River Road neighborhood and building owner Lutfi Thabet to bring a much-needed grocery store to an area of Eugene with few options in terms of healthy, fresh produce.

Back in 2013, EW did a public records request to find out how much oil was rolling through Eugene on railroad tanker cars. The request was swiftly denied by Oregon’s Attorney General’s office citing a post 9/11 security exemption. After all, if terrorists were to find out how much explosive Bakken crude was rolling through town, what would they do with that knowledge?

Councilors George Brown, Greg Evans and Chris Pryor do not recall the Eugene City Council ever voting to move into the “construction documents and bid the project” phase for a new City Hall. 

Yet buried in a June 1 Register-Guard article “Lane County eyes bigger chunk of Eugene’s City Hall block for new courthouse” was a comment from city spokeswoman Jan Bohman: The City Hall “project team is currently working with the direction we received from (the City) Council on April 27, which is to complete construction documents and bid the project so that we have firm costs to present for their consideration in July.”

Oregon Department of Transportation is spraying roadsides. Call 503-986-3010 to talk with a vegetation management coordinator or call 1-888-996-8080 for recent herbicide application information. Hwys. 36, 101 and 126 were recently sprayed.

The Oregon Department of Environmental Quality (DEQ) fined Pacific Recycling, Inc. $12,374 last week for Clean Water Act violations at its Eugene metal recycling facility (located at 3300 Cross Street). Pacific Recycling has a history of environmental violations (and associated fines) at this facility (see goo.gl/kkGA0D), and this most recent fine is for failure to monitor its stormwater discharges during the first half of 2015.

• Calls to EW’s front desk can be crazy and fun. The latest comes from a reader (maybe) wondering what
kind of paper and ink goes into our finished product. He has been using EW to start his barbecue, and the food is tasting bad. Oops! We recommend trying The Register-Guard or The Oregonian.

 

Good Food Easy/Sweetwater Farm will be opening a farm stand at the Creswell Bakery at 182 S. 2nd Street in Creswell beginning 10 am to 2 pm Saturday, June 11, then ongoing each Saturday throughout the summer. Erica Trappe of Good Food Easy says, “We are a major supplier of produce to the bakery, so now customers will be able to purchase the same fresh local ingredients they enjoy on the bakery menu.”

Vaxxed: From Cover Up To Catastrophe will be playing at the David Minor Theater starting June 10. According to the movie’s description, “Vaxxed is an investigation into how the CDC (Centers for Disease Control and Prevention), the government agency charged with protecting the health of American citizens, concealed and destroyed data in their 2004 study that showed a link between the MMR vaccine and autism.