Author: paedwards

Sweet Lorane Community News, February 2, 2023

The Chronicle (Creswell)
Sweet Lorane Community News
February 2, 2023
By Pat Edwards

According to Crow-Applegate-Lorane School District teacher, Michele Kau…

“The new Crow Middle/High School construction class has been busy building an awesome storage shed which will soon be raffled off to the public. What makes me most proud is the craftsmanship that these students have demonstrated in building this structure—and another one like it—earlier this year. Our awesome shop teacher, Kyle Kishen, is doing a fantastic job of arming these kids with some life-long, incredibly valuable skills, that they will be able to take with them when they leave us at the end of their high school years… and that’s pretty great!!”

This past week, the school has launched the sale of the tickets for anyone who wants to be eligible to win the shed. Two hundred tickets are being offered for $50 each. The drawing will take place as soon as they are sold. Proceeds will be used to help fund future construction projects. Contact the Crow Middle/High School office if you want to buy raffle tickets at 541-935-2227.

I also recently read a write-up about one of the construction projects undertaken by Eugene 4-J School District called “Future Build House.” For it, students work half days to finish construction of low income housing by learning such skills as cutting and attaching siding, installing windows and using the tools of the trade. By doing so, they can also earn College Now credit through Lane Community College.

These projects are life-changing for some students and it’s the kind of thing that has been absent from many of our schools in recent years when so much emphasis was put on college advanced placement courses and preparation for 4-year colleges, while discontinuing the trades classes that have been so popular in the past. I have long believed that both options are vitally important in today’s high school education—even in middle school. Not all students choose to go to a 4-year college whether it be due to finances, academic status or a desire to train at either a trade school or the school of hard knocks. Don’t get me wrong—a higher education benefits all students—even those interested in working in construction, retail sales, auto mechanics, farming, the hospitality industry, computer technology, and so many other occupations that keep the cogs in the wheel of our daily lives working, if they are able to attend. But, it’s important to expose all students to the many and varied choices available to them and not downplay or denigrate the vital role that being a tradesman or, in today’s jargon, “blue-collar worker” play in all of our lives. Kudos to the return of trades classes in a lot of our schools!

The Rural Art Center’s Lorane Movie Night will be presenting another unnamed family-appropriate movie at the Lorane Grange on Saturday, February 11. Dinner,which includes a selection of homemade soups and bread,will be served at 6:00 p.m. Before the movie begins at 7:00 p.m., RAC’s current community ukelele group will perform for the enjoyment of those attending. The last Movie Night of the season will be held on Saturday, March 11.

RAC partners with the Lorane Grange to provide another fun community event on Sunday, April 16, at 3:00 p.m. The annual Community Talent Show organizers are seeking people with all kinds of talented acts and displays—both formal and funny—to sign up for this year’s events. All of the various acts will be performed on stage at the grange, and display talent—artwork, books, crafts, etc.—will be displayed in the grange kitchen for everyone to view. Contact either Lisa Livelybrooks of RAC (, or Lil Thompson of the Lorane Grange (541-942-3401; for more information or to sign up.

Sweet Lorane Community News, January 26, 2023

The Chronicle (Creswell)
Sweet Lorane Community News
January 26, 2023
By Pat Edwards

Watching the news these days has become so difficult. The two mass shootings in California this past week were heartbreaking and the enormity of how it has affected not only the victims, their families and others on-site is mind-boggling. Trying to even imagine how any of us would feel if we were in their positions is impossible. But, on January 23, as we read the Lane County Sheriff’s Office bulletin that someone posted on Facebook, it was all brought home…

“23-0459 – School Shooting Threat at Crow High School. This morning just after 9:30 a.m., the Lane County Sheriff’s Office received the report of a school shooting threat involving a student at Crow High School. Investigators responded and learned that the involved student had made a social media post three days ago, asking other students if they would like to help shoot up the school. The involved student was identified and his parents were contacted.
Deputies took the involved juvenile into custody for Disorderly Conduct in the First Degree. He was transported to the SERBU juvenile detention facility and lodged on the listed charge. Investigators have been working closely with school officials to ensure the safety of the community. There is believed to be no ongoing threat at this time.”

Our daughter, Michele Kau, has worked as a teacher at Crow Middle/High School for many years. Our first concern was for her state-of-mind and when we were able to reach her, she was not able to give us any details (which we didn’t ask for), but she assured us that she was fine and felt that the matter had been handled very professionally by the Sheriff’s Department and the school administration. Jim and I are so relieved and thankful that a potential tragedy may have been averted. The knowledge that protocols are in place to deal with this type of situation at our local combined middle/high school is of some comfort, but it also brings the realization that we all need to be aware of those around us—children, included—who make what might seem like innocent remarks that should be taken seriously, or others of all ages who display what seems to be unwarranted anger and distrust or unusual mood-swings.

My mind keeps returning to the thought that, through 80 years of life, I am truly feeling fear for the first time for what is happening in our country on many fronts. I’ve always felt relatively safe and secure in the fact that our children and grandchildren have been raised with values of kindness and respect for others and by so doing, can enjoy a carefree childhood without fear. The concept of “shooter-drills” and teaching them how to stay safe in their school environments is totally foreign to me, but I realize that our schools are being forced by the circumstances to use these measures. Our children and grandchildren are the precious basis for my hope that, by living through these trying times, as adults, they will be able to come to terms with what must be done to bring about the changes that will allow their own children to once again feel safe and be able to enjoy their childhoods. My generation certainly hasn’t been able to do it for them.

Thank you to all of our school administrators, teachers, counselors, Lane County Sheriff’s deputies and, most of all, the students and parents who were able to alert someone about the potential threat so that it could be dealt with. I pray that the student who was taken into custody realizes the consequences of making threatening statements—even if they were not serious—and gets the help he needs to put him on the right path in life.

Sweet Lorane Community News, January 12, 2023

The Chronicle (Creswell)
Sweet Lorane Community News
January 12, 2023
By Pat Edwards

There are some requests sent out from the Crow-Applegate-Lorane School District that I’d like to share with others this week. First, the district is in need of two community members for its Budget Committee to help determine the district’s budget for 2023-24 school year. It will only require a few evening meetings this spring.

In addition, the district is looking for substitute school bus drivers. Training will be provided by the district. Please contact Donna Willits at the District Office, 541-935-2100, or stop by for an application at 85955 Territorial Rd., Eugene, OR 97402.

While we are on C-A-L School District news, let me tell you about the beautiful $100 Charcuterie Board gift certificate that the Crow High School Junior Class is raffling off on February 1st as a fundraiser. The board is filled with a selection of cured meats or pâtés, assorted cheeses, crackers, breads, fruits, veggies, olives and other goodies, beautifully arranged and presented to feed 10-12 people. Contact the Crow Middle/High School office, (541) 935-2227, if you would like to purchase some of these raffle tickets.

These cold and/or rainy winter days we’ve been having lately are never fun to be “out and about” in, but they offer Jim and me a chance to let life around us slow down a bit following the busy holidays. We no longer have a fireplace or wood stove in our home. I miss the wonderful smell of wood smoke and the warmth that seems to penetrate my bones so completely. Our heat pump provides a great year-round temperature, but on rainy days, especially, the dampness and chill still seem to creep in when I’m not physically active, so I usually don a sweater. Even better, is the license I give myself to soak in a hot bath or cuddle beneath a soft, warm comforter to read a book or take a short nap whenever possible—usually with a cat or dog… sometimes both… curled up on top of me. When the need to do something productive makes itself known, I spend time on my computer, working on a book project, writing a column, answering emails, paying bills, or just browsing through the news and family photographs posted on social media. This time of year, I also find I have to coax myself into getting out all of the paperwork needed to prepare for the taxes that will soon have to be filed.

Through most of my life, winter has been my least-favorite season; as a farm wife, I always hated having to bundle up, put on knee-high rubber boots and wade through the mud to do the necessary chores. I didn’t mind the chores themselves so much, because I loved our livestock and the warm, fragrant smells of a barn sheltering them from the elements. The part that I disliked so much has always been the deep mud outside the barn that occasionally sucked a boot off, threatening my balance and sometimes miring my foot in the goo. But I find that, as I have aged—now that there is no more mud to contend with (but no livestock either)—I find more and more to like about these winter days. I can put aside the guilt of being lazy and enjoy the perks of enjoying hearth and home. I believe that I’ve earned this time to regenerate as best as I can so that I’ll be ready to head out into the sunshine and warmth of late spring days to prepare flower beds, pull weeds and mow lawns on the riding lawn mower. With its aches and pains, life is most certainly winding down as time passes, but we are able to find the comfort that can accompany each day if we are willing to look for it and, best of all, I have been able to leave the guilt behind.

Our prayers are with those in California right now whose lives and homes are being destroyed by the catastrophic floods and mudslides that Mother Nature has sent their way. We are thankful that our Oregon winters are usually much kinder to us.