Bloom Time

Spring is here! Everywhere I go, I see mounds of brilliant yellow daffodils and smell the sweet fragrance of Daphne. After such a drab, gray winter, I am ready for some color. Luckily, we have a number of local parks and gardens where I can easily see flowers in bloom throughout the growing season. If you also enjoy flowers and gardens, here are nine near-by locations to explore. If you plan well, blooms from these gardens and parks should take you through spring and well into summer. All of … [Read more...]

Willamette Fish Hatchery: Oakridge

The Willamette Fish Hatchery sits just outside of Oakridge.  I can't tell you how many times I've driven down Highway 58 without noticing the road sign pointing toward the hatchery. Luckily, at some point it captured my attention, and the hatchery ended up on my "things to see" list. When we stopped by the hatchery last fall, I wasn't exactly sure what to expect. I knew there would be ponds full of fish, I suspected we'd have the opportunity to feed some, but I didn't know we would be … [Read more...]

Holiday Lights at Shore Acres State Park

This year over 325,000 lights have been strung at Shore Acres State Park in Charleston as part of their 29th annual Holiday Lights. What began as simply stringing a "few strands of lights" in the formal garden has since become a community tradition. This year organizers expect to draw 40,000 to 50,000 visitors. Although I had heard about the Holiday Lights before, it wasn't until I talked with Shirley and David Bridgham, the co-chairs of the event, that I realized that this is entirely a walk … [Read more...]

Oregon Caves

Have you ever been to the Oregon Caves? I'm a native Oregonian, and I've lived in Oregon most of my life, yet I went to the Oregon Caves for the first time last month. Is that unusual? I don't know. But what I do know, now, is that the Oregon Caves are beautiful both inside and out. Officially called "Oregon Caves National Monument and Preserve," the caves sit in the Rogue River-Siskiyou National Forest. It is a beautiful location with numerous trails heading off into the forest from the … [Read more...]

Six Great Walks in Cottage Grove

Does your New Years Resolution include getting more exercise? If so, I have great news -- Cottage Grove is full of great places to get outside and enjoy a good stroll, jog, or bike ride. Over the years, I have written about several of those places here on the blog. Recently, I was getting together a list, and I thought I would share it with you.   6 Great Walks in Cottage Grove: 1. Row River Trail: Extending 15.5 miles and with six developed trail heads, the Row River Trail has a … [Read more...]