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On Dec. 15, the Lane County Board of Commissioners quietly voted on an ordinance that made an already ambiguous policy about who has the right to be on county property even more problematic.

Under Chapter 6 of the Lane County Code, “a duly authorized officer,” who could be a board member, the county administrator or “any person delegated the authority to control county property” by those people — and the delegation of authority does need not be in writing — can trespass someone from county property. 

When we think of live performance, we probably picture actors or dancers — the people we regularly see onstage. But where would a production be without the tireless, behind-the-scenes magicians who create the sets, lighting and sound?

[Update: This story has been edited Jan. 22 to include a response from the city of Eugene]

Slow down. That’s the message citizens of Eugene are emailing to City Manager Jon Ruiz, Mayor Kitty Piercy and the Eugene City Council about Kesey Square and its potential development into an apartment building by a local group, which could happen as soon as this spring.

Jan. 15 was the deadline for submission of RFEIs (requests for expression of interest) for Kesey Square.

KLCC public radio in Eugene is no longer running Alternative Radio, a weekly program that has run for 30 years. The hour-long program slot at 7 pm Tuesday has been filled by Reveal, investigative reports from the Center for Public Integrity, Public Radio Exchange and partner public radio stations around the country. KLCC is now a partner station with opportunities to give Eugene-area stories national exposure. Reveal is free for KLCC, as was Alternative Radio.

Seneca Jones Timber Company LLC, 689-1011, plans to spray roadsides near Siuslaw River Road, Crow Creek, Douglas Creek, Sheffler Road, Doane and Crow Roads, Simonsen Road, Farman Creek and Camas Swale Creek near Weiss Road. See ODF notifications 2016-781-00876, 00877, 00879, 00880, 00881 and 2016-781-00882, call Brian Peterson or Robin Biesecker at 998-2283 with questions. 

Once upon a time, it seemed as though music, like the Willamette, flowed mainly to the north: Eugene bands worked hard to play Portland, but the favor wasn’t always returned, especially in the classical and jazz arenas. More and more, though, we’re seeing Portland performers recognizing the value of the Eugene market and, accordingly, this winter and spring brings a parade of Portlanders here to perform additional, even exclusive concerts.

A subtle aesthetic is starting to emerge at Oregon Contemporary Theatre, which for the past couple of seasons has mounted a series of tight, powerful works by playwrights (some with ties to Eugene or the Northwest in general) who tackle the prickly issues of what it means and how it feels to live in this world right now.

For half a century, Harper Lee’s novel To Kill A Mockingbird has held an immovable place on the American bookshelf by using humor and grace to tackle one of our nation’s ugliest ongoing realities: racism. 

The Very Little Theatre has mounted a winning production of this evergreen tale. 

Like a lot of people, Corvallis-based theater director and educator Elizabeth Helman watched Neil deGrasse Tyson’s Cosmos series on Netflix.

“I just happened to see a tiny little biography,” Helman tells EW, “a 10-minute segment of the Cosmos series and it had this mini-biography about Henrietta Leavitt.”

• “Red Barn” is one well-known piece from the great legacy of Oregon artist Mark Clarke, who died suddenly Jan. 11 at age 80. His memorial was Jan. 17 in The Shedd. Remembered both for how he captured his surroundings in oil and acrylic, and for how he and his family lived in this world, Mark Clarke fortunately had been planning a retrospective in the Schnitzer museum on the UO campus next year. We have that to look forward to.

• OSPIRG Foundation’s new report, “Oregon’s Multi-Million Dollar Democracy,” will be released at 10 am Thursday, Jan. 21, at the Wayne Morse Free Speech Plaza downtown. The report highlights the disparity between large and small donors in Oregon’s 2014 elections and recommends steps to level the playing field. Speakers will include Linda Lynch, president of Lane County League of Women Voters, and Amy Laws of OSPIRG.

In Afghanistan

• 2,349 U.S. troops killed (2,349 last month)

• 20,071 U.S. troops wounded in action (20,071)

• 1,629 U.S. contractors killed (1,616)

• 16,179 civilians killed (updates NA)

• $725.3 billion cost of war ($722.1 billion)

• $290.1 million cost to Eugene taxpayers ($288.8 million)


Against ISIS

• $7.9 billion cost of military action ($7.4 billion last month)

• $3.1 million cost to Eugene taxpayers ($2.9 million)

The Pacific Patriot Network (PPN) issued a press release Jan. 10 regarding a “Proposal for Resolution of the Peaceful Occupation of the Malheur National Wildlife Refuge by Citizens for Constitutional Freedom.” This is the armed convoy that disrupted the press conference I attended Jan. 9 while out in Burns checking out the Malheur occupation. 

Music News & notes from down in the Willamette valley.


I am no longer sexually active, but I have a significant collection of sex toys from earlier years. I’m thinking of getting rid of most of them, and it seems such a waste for them to end up in the landfill. What’s an environmentally responsible way to dispose of dildos? I wish there was a place I could donate the dildos where they could be used again. Many of them are quality silicone types, they’ve never been used on a person without a condom, and they’ve been thoroughly cleaned.

Walking through the shadows and spotlights of the silent Barker Gallery where a Brian Lanker show is being hung, artist Lynda Lanker remembers her late husband. This is the first time she’s seen a retrospective of his work. His massive photographs dwarf her as she passes by. 

Gazing at a photo, Lynda recalls a question she once posed to a LIFE photo editor and friend.

“Well, what is it that sets Brian apart from the other photographers that shoot for you?” she asked.

Eugene-based comics artist Mike Allred smiles wide. “I’m a professional child,” he says.

Allred’s understated style turned heads when his Madman hit stores in 1992, paving the way for him to work with many of the best writers in the business as he drew the shiny, spandexed heroes he grew up loving.

Check the circa-1965 YouTube video of Mick Jagger and Stones crooning “Ti-i-i-ime is on my side, yes it is.” Mick looks like a kid; they all do, the whole band. Well, time is not on your side, or mine, or Mick’s or wine’s.

Windows. Lenses. Curtains. More windows. There are layers between the actors and the audience in Todd Haynes’ Carol, some of them narrative, some literal. Haynes loves to show the gently blurred image of Rooney Mara, elfin and pensive, shot through glass. Mara, though the various award nominations (and the title) might suggest otherwise, is the star of Carol. As Therese, an early-1950s young woman with a department store job, a well-intentioned beau and a lovely little apartment, she floats through the film with wide eyes and the occasional sharp glance.

I had to see this thing, this occupation, in person. Another 1970s Sagebrush Rebellion being staged at Oregon’s bird sanctuary, this sacred site? Really? Our oldest American refuge, so precious it was designated as such before America even had a National Park Service? Why? Who are these guys? Why Malheur of all places? WTF?

I called my former colleague, Senate Republican leader Ted Ferrioli, who represents Harney County, to get his take. And I called Cliff Bentz, the current state rep from Ontario.

It’s been a heavy week for Adam Jacques. As he tours around the 40-plus-acre farm in west Eugene where he cultivates some of the most highly regarded medical cannabis in the world, Jacques, always outgoing, nonetheless seems weighted by sadness — not exactly downbeat but weary, like a man recently smacked by the cosmos.

Atop the 100-hour week Jacques and his team routinely put in breeding medical cannabis for patients, he’s also been filling out the reams of bureaucratic and legal paperwork required to go recreational, a move he’s making largely to fund the healing side of his profession. It’s this professional work — the breeding of strains with record-breaking percentages of cannabidiol or CBD, one of the major medicinal elements in pot that, unlike THC, does not get you high — that led Canna Magazine to give Jacques the Most Influential Grower in the Northwest award at its Seattle conference this past August.

But there’s business, and then there’s the business of healing, with its hard-won triumphs and inevitable losses. On the morning of Jan. 3 came news of the passing of Frank Leeds, a cancer patient with whom Jacques had been working closely for the past five years. It was his work with Leeds — and in particular the breeding of “Frank’s Gift,” a high-CBD strain of cannabis — that opened up for Jacques the possibility of turning his green gifts toward the services of healing.

Bring up the topic of Kesey Square and the importance of downtown open public space with city of Eugene officials and you can expect the conversation to be steered to the Park Blocks. 

Kesey Square has problems, city employees say, including issues of design, the preponderance of “travelers” dominating the space, the simple fact that it’s flat and that people just don’t want to be there. 

The projected cost of Eugene’s new City Hall has now risen after city councilors requested that city staff look into boosting the new four-story structure’s ability to withstand a severe earthquake. 

“We asked the city manager to investigate looking into that standard. He said, ‘Yeah, but it’ll cost more,’” said Councilor Alan Zelenka in an interview with EW. The conversation on altering City Hall’s structure took place at the last City Council meeting in December, he says.