News Briefs

Lane closures coming to Stephens Street in Roseburg before Labor Day

August 28, 2015 — 

Ongoing roadwork for the Highway 138E Corridor Solutions Project will require some intermittent lane closures on Stephens Street near the intersection of Diamond Lake Boulevard, the Oregon Department of Transportation announced Friday.

The closures will occur between Aug. 31 and Sept 4, when construction workers begin repaving the nearby Deer Creek Bridge on Stephens Street. Crews will also replace sidewalks and work on the road’s drainage. All plans are tentative and dependant on the weather, ODOT said.

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County commissioners object to gun law

August 27, 2015 — 

The Douglas County Board of Commissioners Wednesday passed a resolution opposing background checks for private gun transfers.

The resolution denounces Senate Bill 941, which passed into law this summer. According to the resolution, the commissioners believe the law runs afoul of the U.S. Constitution’s Second Amendment right to bear arms.

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Free course offers Medicare advice

August 25, 2015 — 

A free class will be offered next week explaining the basics about Medicare.

Medicare 101 is taught by the Senior Health Insurance Benefits Assistance Program, a volunteer organization.

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Reservations accepted now for Boys & Girls Clubs Celebrate Kids event

August 25, 2015 — 

People are invited to reserve seats now for the eighth Celebrate Kids event set for 5 p.m. to 9 p.m., Oct. 3, at the Boys & Girls Clubs of the Umpqua Valley, 1144 N.E. Cedar St., Roseburg.

The event will recognize stars of the club and include a dinner by Seven Feathers Casino Resort, a silent and live auction and a recognition program for accomplishments by youths in academics, healthy lifestyles and good citizenship. All proceeds from the event go to support the club’s after-school and summer programs.

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Grant aids O&C railcar renovation

August 25, 2015 — 

Renovations on a historic railroad car will be aided by a grant from the Oregon Cultural Trust.

The Douglas County Museum will receive $9,580 to help pay for its ongoing restoration of an Oregon & California Railroad car.

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Stephens Street expecting more lane closures this week

August 21, 2015 — 

Motorists on Highway 138 should expect to see flaggers on Stephens Street from Aug. 24 to 28 as contract crews continue work near the Deer Creek Bridge. The flaggers will control traffic near the intersection with Diamond Lake Boulevard during daylight hours.

The contractor, Salem-based Carter & Company, is scheduled to pave both southbound lanes of the bridge at the beginning of the week. After that, the two northbound lanes will be closed to allow crews to grind the rest of the bridge deck. As a result, Stephens Street will be single-lane traffic in both directions throughout the week.

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Douglas County trash fees go into effect Sept. 1

August 21, 2015 — 

Douglas County’s solid waste disposal fees will go into effect Sept. 1 at the landfill and transfer stations. From that date forward, residents should remember to carry cash, a local check or a credit/debit card with them during every visit to the landfill or transfer stations.

Local disposal company collection rates will also increase to compensate for the implementation of the new fees.

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Firefighters extinguish three fires on Thursday

August 21, 2015 — 

Firefighters from around the county had a busy Thursday putting out small fires around the county, the Douglas Forest Protective Association said in a statement.

At approximately 12:40 p.m., crews from the DFPA and North Douglas Fire & EMS heard reports of a grass fire about 2 miles south of Yoncalla. The somewhat aggressive grass fire burned about one-fifth of an acre before crews managed to put it out.

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Campfires and open flames banned in state parks by Oregon Parks Department

August 19, 2015 — 

The Oregon Parks and Recreation Department has banned all campfires and open flames in state parks in Oregon, as well as other properties owned and managed by the department. The ban includes designated fire pits, tiki torches, candles, beach fires and more.

“Our goal is to avoid any accidental fires on OPRD property that would further tax limited firefighting resources,” MG Devereux, the deputy director of the OPRD, said in a statement. “Most communities have sent local firefighters and equipment to help with wildfires throughout the state. An unintentional fire in a state park would add an unnecessary burden to firefighting efforts.”

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Transformer sparks small fire in Lookingglass

August 19, 2015 — 

Sparks from a transformer in Lookingglass sparked a road fire Tuesday morning that burned about one-tenth of an acre before it was extinguished.

Firefighters from the Douglas Forest Protective Association and the Lookingglass Rural Fire Department responded to calls at approximately 8:40 a.m. to reports of a grass fire and discovered the slow-moving fire before dousing the flames.

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Kickoff bowling fundraiser slated for UCAN

August 18, 2015 — 

A kickoff event to help fund a central location for UCAN Head Start will be held from 6 to 9 p.m. Saturday at Ten Down Bowling, 2400 N.E. Diamond Lake Blvd., Roseburg. Groups of four to six people can bowl for three hours, listen to live music from the band North Star and eat unlimited free soda and pizza. All for a donation of $200 per group. A silent auction and raffle will be held for quilts made by Head Start children and alumni.

A central location will provide significant cost savings for UCAN, according to a press release.

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Group plans open house for vision-impaired

August 18, 2015 — 

The National Federation of the Blind of Oregon will hold an open house from 3 to 5 p.m. Saturday at the Douglas County Library, 1409 N.E. Diamond Lake Blvd., Roseburg. The event will feature information on the services provided by the Federation of the Blind and people with impaired vision living in Oregon. Refreshments will be provided.

Information: 541-653-9153.

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Forest restrictions tightened for wildfire conditions

August 18, 2015 — 

The Douglas Forest Protective Association, alongside the Oregon Department of Forestry’s South Cascade and Western Lane Districts, announced Tuesday that certain forest operations will be further tightened as wildfire conditions are expected to worsen.

Under the new restrictions, logging and road-building are barred, as well as open fires. Mowing dry grass, which was revealed to be the cause of the 25,076-acre Stouts Fire this month, has also been prohibited.

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Watch Vaux's Swifts with other bird lovers

August 18, 2015 — 

Vaux’s Swifts gather by the hundreds and sometimes by the thousands in Douglas County before migrating to Central and South America for the winter.

During the month of September, their expertise in flight can be seen near sunset when they soar skyward and then plummet en masse into local chimneys to communally roost.

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Musicians for Mobility Summer Jam set for Aug. 22

August 14, 2015 — 

Musicians for Mobility Summer Jam, a benefit concert for Douglas County children with mobility issues, is set to return to Roseburg for its fifth annual event Aug. 22.

The show will kick off with the national anthem by local troubadour Mark Baratta at 11:45 a.m. before several local bands rock the stage until 10 p.m. Local acts will include Kenny Holmes and the Blues Daddys, Free Range Humans, Rag Doll, Ace’s Wild and more. There will also be a performance by the Aulani Hula Halau Dancers, as well as an auction, vendors and a kids zone.

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Level 1 evacuation warnings issued for Diamond Lake area

August 13, 2015 — 

The Umpqua National Forest issued a level 1 evacuation notice to recreation areas near Diamond Lake. The level 1 evacuation notice tells people to begin coming up with evacuation plans in case warnings rise to level 3, which would be an order to evacuate.

The warning stems from fire activity in the nearby National Creek Complex, a collection of fires burning roughly 2,000 acres near Crater Lake National Forest and the Rogue River-Siskiyou National Forest.

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Stouts Fire caused by lawn mower, officials say

August 13, 2015 — 

The Stouts Fire was officially caused by a person mowing his or her grass, the Douglas Forest Protective Association announced today.

In a statement, fire officials said the person could be held responsible for the fire-suppression costs and damages as mowing lawns had been restricted by a Regulated Use Closure due to the hot and dry climate.

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Campfires banned on DFPA land

August 13, 2015 — 

Open fires are being temporarily banned on campgrounds throughout Douglas County, the Douglas Forest Protective Association announced today. The decision comes after the forestlands have experienced extreme dryness and increased fire activity throughout the county.

The types of fires that the ban affects are campfires, warming fires, cooking fires and charcoal fires. The ban will remain in place until fire conditions improve. Campers are still allowed to use portable cooking stoves with liquefied or bottled fuels for cooking purposes.

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Campfires temporarily banned in Umpqua National Forest, Potter Mountain Complex 75 percent contained

August 12, 2015 — 

A temporary ban on campfires within the Umpqua National Forest will go into effect today, according to forest officials. Under the ban, portable cooking stoves that use pressurized liquefied gas or propane are permitted, as well as generators with an approved spark-arrester screen.

The ban comes after extremely dry conditions and the active Potter Mountain Complex fires have raised the risk of wildfires throughout the forestlands. Currently, the Potter Mountain Complex stands at 327 acres burned, but is about 75 percent contained. The wildfires were started by lightning on Aug. 1, and today 121 personnel are combating them.

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Christian outreach concert planned

August 11, 2015 — 

Four pastors and four bands will be featured at a community outreach concert from 11 a.m. to dusk Saturday at Millsite Park.

The Rev. Kyle Winter from Garden Valley Church South, Rev. Jerry Counsil from Hearts Across America, Rev. Randy Rutledge from Garden Valley Church North and Rev. Larry Gautlin from Encounter Church will preach. Bands will include Garden Valley North Band, Bennett Palmer and Garrett Langdon, Arieana Vidales of Woodland, California and the Canyonville Encounter Church Band.

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Roseburg Forest Products purchases fiberboard plant

August 11, 2015 — 

Roseburg Forest Products Co. announced today that it has agreed to purchase the medium density fiberboard facility in Medford, from SierraPine Composite Solutions.

The acquisition is expected to close by mid- to late September. Other details of the transaction were not revealed.

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1-year-old boy severely burned in shed fire

August 10, 2015 — 

A 1-year-old boy was severely burned in Myrtle Creek on Sunday after a shed he was close to caught on fire.

At approximately 6:20 p.m., Douglas Forest Protective Association and South Umpqua Fire Department from Canyonville responded to and suppressed a fire in the 100 block of Tom-Wayne Lane. Minutes later, however, they received another call reporting a small child had suffered burns over the majority of his body.

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Inmate walks free after leaving Stouts Creek Fire camp

August 10, 2015 — 

Oregon State Police are looking for an inmate who walked away from the firefighting camp at the Stouts Creek Fire on Sunday morning.

According to the Oregon Department of Corrections, Kenneth Curtis Polchowski, a 26-year-old inmate serving a two-year sentence for theft, identity theft and burglary, wasn’t present for a routine head count at approximately 6 a.m. Polchowski had been housed at the camp since July 31.

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Umpqua Valley Humane Society Thrift Shoppe to hold fall sale for animals

August 10, 2015 — 

The Umpqua Valley Humane Society Thrift Shoppe will hold a benefit bake sale/car wash from 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. Sept. 12 at 930 S.E. Stephens St., Roseburg. Plants and produce will also be available for sale.

Information: 541-672-5240.

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Firefighters extinguish fire near Ben More Lane on Wednesday

August 6, 2015 — 

A fire burning about an acre-and-a-half in Oakland was extinguished by the Douglas Forest Protective Association on Wednesday afternoon.

At approximately 3:45 p.m., the DFPA responded to reports of a small grass fire burning about 7 miles northeast of Oakland, near Ben More Lane. The fire reportedly threatened a home and the home’s outside structure, however crews managed to stop the fire before it did any damage.

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Myrtle Creek rummage sale to benefit Seniors Escorting Seniors

August 6, 2015 — 

A rummage sale will be held from 9 a.m. to 4 p.m. Aug. 14-15, 340 Woody Court, Myrtle Creek. All proceeds will benefit Seniors Escorting Seniors, a transportation service between Canyonville, Myrtle Creek, Riddle and Tri City.

Information: 541-863-5437.

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OSU Extension accepting applications for Master Gardener classes

August 5, 2015 — 

The Douglas County Oregon State University Extension Horticulture Program is now accepting applications for its Master Gardener Training Class Series that begins Tuesday, Jan 5, 2016. Pre-registration is required.

Training includes sustainable gardening topics of botany, soil science, insect and disease identification and management, vegetables and diagnosis of plant problems.

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Kick-off Breakfast date set for Greater Douglas United Way

August 5, 2015 — 

Greater Douglas United Way will launch its 2015-16 fundraising campaign with its annual Kick-Off Breakfast 7 a.m. Sept. 3 at the Umpqua Community College LaVerne Murphy Student Center.

The yearly event is a way for United Way staff, board members, key contributors and representatives of member agencies to rally around the record-setting success of 2014-15 and find out what the new goal will be for 2015-16.

“Last year’s event was one of the most fun and profitable breakfasts we have ever had,” said Greater Douglas United Way Executive Director Bryan Trenkle in a press release. “We hope to recapture that excitement and use the momentum of surpassing $1 million dollars to excite our community to continue to Live United.”

Twenty-nine local non-profit member agencies and another 70 other non-profit organizations benefitted from last year’s campaign.

The Kick-Off Breakfast will also include awarding of Community Impact funding, an auction to start the fundraising effort and a message from Board President Tamara Osborne.

Greater Douglas United Way can be found on Facebook, Instagram (gduway), Twitter (@GDougUWay), and at www.gduway.com.

Crews continue suppression efforts on Potter Mountain Complex

August 4, 2015 — 

A thunderstorm over the Diamond Lake Ranger District produced little lightning. No new wildfires flared up despite four reported lightning strikes, the Umpqua National Forest announced today.

The Potter Mountain Complex, an array of fires in the Umpqua National Forest that sprang up from dry lightning strikes on Aug. 2, is currently burning approximately 135 acres. Suppression efforts include building fire lines from Forest Service Road 2154-160 to Forest Service Road 34-100.

Currently, there are 61 firefighters present, with six fire engines, three helicopters, a hot shot crew and a bulldozer.

Authorities with the forest raised the Industrial Fire Protection Level from 3 to 4, known as a “general shutdown” of industrial actions in the area. Use restrictions for the general public also remain in effect.

Information: 575-418-7875.

Board of Property Tax Appeals needs members

August 4, 2015 — 

The Douglas County Board of Commissioners needs people to serve on the Douglas County Board of Property Tax Appeals.

The board consists of three county residents who do not hold elective office. It hears taxpayer appeals for reduction of the real market or assessed value of property.

Applications are available at the commissioners’ office in Room 217 of the Douglas County Courthouse, 1036 S.E. Douglas Ave., Roseburg, or electronically at co.douglas.or.us. Applications must be received no later than 5 p.m. Sept. 4.

Appointments will be made by Oct. 15, and the term of service will begin then and will end June 30, 2016.

Information: 541-440-4201.

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