The annual KLCC Microbrew Festival carried on at the Fairgrounds last weekend despite the snow and ice, and “this was the first time we’ve had ever had people arrive by ski, sled and snowshoes,” says Cheryl Crumbley of KLCC. She says proceeds were down about 50 percent due to the weather, but only six out of 65 breweries didn’t make it. “For the attendees, this year’s brewfest was excellent because the music was great and the crowds were small (no lines).” The low attendance was “a big blow,” but Crumbley says there are no plans for a make-up event.
• The Trans-Pacific Partnership is the topic of a free Sierra Club forum at 7 pm Thursday, Feb. 13, at the Unitarian Universalist Church at 13th and Chambers. Speakers include Jesse Swanhuyser, chair of the national Sierra Club’s Committee on International Trade, Human Rights and the Environment, and Linda Peterson of the Oregon Fair Trade Coalition and AFSCME Local 3214. Contact Bill Rogers at 654-0405.
On Nov. 27, EW’s Slant profiled the “Environmental Scorecard” of the Oregon League of Conservation Voters. EW drew attention to “the relatively high scores racked up by state reps and senators in our part of the valley.” Unfortunately, OLCV was grading on a curve to make Democrats in Salem look better than they are.
Oh, the exuberance of youth — a time when we scoff at being told “less is more,” exclaiming instead that “only more can be more!” Why limit music to standard guitar/bass/drums? Why not cellos, violins, banjos, saxophones and horns? Why only four people on stage when you can have 10, a dozen, even 20 musicians? These are the questions that Austin-based Mother Falcon asks, and it’s this spirit the group’s sound embodies.
Many question whether classical music can survive its self-inflicted wounds: aging, demographically narrow (read: predominantly old, white, rich) audiences; endless recycling of the same old tunes from long-dead European composers; bloodless performances in audience-unfriendly settings, etc. The answer, my friend, is blowing in the winds — Imani Winds.
Eccentric Nashville musician R. Stevie Moore has been writing music for more than 45 years, releasing 400-plus albums in media as varied as CD-R, cassette and digital download. And it’s all been done in essential obscurity. It makes one wonder: What keeps R. Stevie Moore going?
The most recent album from Amos Lee, 2013’s Mountains of Sorrow, Rivers of Song, focuses heavily on hard times. Much of the content was inspired by Lee’s many trips across the country and the people he met along the way.
Thanks primarily to a pair of forward-looking institutions, Eugene keeps attracting visiting vanguard artists that just about any other midsized mini-metropolis would envy. This month, one of them snags three young stars who are also appearing at the big Portland Jazz Festival that annually brings some of world’s finest improvisers to the Northwest.
Lord knows, existentialism is old hat by now: It’s practically taken for granted among the cognoscenti that God is dead, life is meaningless, language is a prison, we are alone, etc., etc. Used to be the muscular existentialist pose involved an angry brow knitted under a fedora, with cigarette ash dropping upon a tattered copy of Nietzsche’s Thus SpokeZarathustra; now, every 13-year-old playing Grand Theft Auto with a belly full of Dr. Pepper knows that life is a bunk game, full of sound and fury signifying nothing.
The teachers are on strike in Medford, and to fight the strike and stonewall negotiations the Medford School District is reaching out to substitute teachers in District 4J, and probably other districts, looking for what, in my day, we called scabs — hiring teachers to cross the picket line and weaken the strike.
I am an 18-year-old pansexual girl. I’m currently in a relationship with a guy. He is a bit younger, though mature for his age. We get along great, our friends like us together, yada yada yada. He wants to do the waiting until marriage thing for sex. I’m cool with that, less pressure in the relationship. He wants to do this for religious reasons, which I mostly agree with. We met in youth group, after all. Here is the real kink. I lost the big V about a year ago.
Though only three of them are actually dark, this year’s crop of Oscar-nominated live-action shorts (now playing at Bijou Metro feels disproportionately heavy. There’s one bit of likable fluff (the Finnish “Do I Have to Take Care of Everything?”) involving a flustered family in a morning rush; there’s also a bit of humor in Mark Gill’s “The Voorman Problem,” which stars Martin Freeman as a doctor asked to examine a prisoner who claims he’s a god. The god, actually; Voorman (an excellent, slippery Tom Hollander) claims to be keeping the whole world going and offers to get rid of Belgium to prove his claims. Sleek and deft and very, very British, “The Voorman Problem” — which is based on an excerpt from David Mitchell’s novel number9dream — is the charmer of the bunch.
• Nearly a foot of snow followed by an ice storm created chaos in Lane County this past weekend and shows us how unprepared we are for disasters large and small, whether brought about by climate or earthquakes. This week we heard an audit of the Oregon Office of Emergency Management indicated the agency has not completed its statewide disaster plan, among other deficiencies. We need to demand better performance from local, state and national agencies, but we also need to be better prepared in our neighborhoods for climate weirdness and seismic events.
In a flurry of sawdust and activity, the Urban Lumber Company Workshop in Springfield buzzes with the sounds of drilling and sawing. Towering branches, stumps and logs fill the workspace, each waiting its turn to become the next work of art carved into existence by owner Seth San Filippo and his fellow woodworkers, Josh Krute and Christian Jensen. These pieces of lumber, salvaged, reclaimed or sustainably harvested from all over the Eugene-Springfield area, are trees reincarnate. Instead of harvesting fresh timber from wild areas, Urban Lumber seeks out city trees that are dying, pose a threat to surrounding buildings or create some other kind of safety hazard. Rather than scrapping the lumber or sending it to landfills, Urban Lumber steps in and gives the wood another chance, collaborating with local businesses and individuals to create tables, doors, bed frames, countertops and everything else imaginable.
On Feb. 4, the newly renamed Dove Medical Pregnancy Diagnosis Clinic, a crisis pregnancy center (CPC), held a grand opening celebration. Pro-choice advocates such as Planned Parenthood have criticized CPCs for giving patients false information about abortion, including that abortion causes breast cancer, can lead to sterility and is psychologically damaging.
Comments on the stormwater pollution control plan for Natron Wood Products LLC’s facility in Jasper are due to Oregon Department of Environmental Quality (DEQ) by 5 pm on Feb. 10. Visit goo.gl/ScwdH to see stormwater the plan and goo.gl/iMDQb to comment. Comments to DEQ regarding the erosion and sediment control plan for Phase 3 of Willamalane’s Sports Park on South 32nd Street in Springfield are due by 5 pm on Feb. 11. Visit goo.gl/Yp4iAK for information on how to make arrangements to view the plan and comment.
It’s looking like a good week for Oregon’s native little fish and its potato-shaped sea birds. News that the diminutive Oregon chub is slated to be removed from the endangered species list is making big headlines, and a just-announced settlement between the Oregon Department of Forestry (ODF) and environmental groups means more hope for the threatened marbled murrelet, a sea bird that nests in Oregon’s coastal old-growth forests.
Planned Parenthood Advocates of Oregon (PPAO) will provide a twist to the normal Valentine’s Day festivities with its third annual “It’s Not Me, It’s You: Stories From the Dark Side of Dating” event on Friday, Feb. 7.
Jennifer Sparklebritches, a local stand-up comedian, will be hosting the event for the first time with a lineup of other stand-up comedians, writers and more who will be talking about their nightmarish dating experiences.
One speaker’s stance on gender identity is causing controversy around an upcoming environmental conference at the UO. Among its keynote speakers, the 32nd annual Public Interest Environmental Law Conference (PIELC) Feb. 27 to March 2 will feature radical feminist Lierre Keith of Deep Green Resistance (DGR). A heated debate on PIELC’s Facebook event page (http://wkly.ws/1on) about Keith’s position that people who are transgender aren’t really the gender with which they identify has generated hundreds of comments.
• Civic Stadium may survive the wrecking ball after all. It’s a wise leadership move by 4J Schools Superintendent Shelley Berman to support the city of Eugene’s offer to open an avenue for both the YMCA and a restored Civic Stadium on the 10.2 acres in south Eugene. Next, the School Board should follow his lead with a positive vote on Feb. 19. Only the city of Eugene’s proposal of $4.5 million includes reusing the historic stadium and the opportunity for a new Y on the site.
Greater Goods is closing after 23 years in Eugene. Joan Kleban is retiring and she has been a good friend to EW and a consistent advertiser all these years. We wish her well and expect she will continue to be a positive force in our community. We also appreciate her dedication to offering fair trade, hand-made products and folk art from around the world. Fair trade goods promote social and environmental sustainability, rare qualities in developing countries and even here at home.
• City Club of Eugene will look at “Working Together on the BEST Outcomes for Kids” at its luncheon at noon Friday, Feb. 7, at the Downtown Athletic Club third floor ballroom, 999 Willamette. Speakers include Raquel Gwynn, Sharon Tabor and Randy Bernstein from School District 4J and Peter Chavannes of the city. $5 for nonmembers.
Raised on a farm in southern Oregon, Sherry Whitmore graduated from Eagle Point High School and worked at a Sizzler restaurant in Medford. “I came up here for management training and met Brian Whitmore,” she says. “Three months later, I moved to Eugene.” She got married, spent summers as a forest firefighter, then had three kids, Shelby, Maddie and Trevor, and became a stay-at-home mom. “I coached volleyball for 13 years, at Kidsports and at South Eugene,” she notes.