Grant Gerstner of Keizer collected more than 8,000 items for the Keizer Community Library for his Eagle Scout project.
Gerstner, 15, a sophomore at McNary High School and a member of Troop 67, collected books and other library items by placing drop boxes Keizer True Value Hardware, Roth’s Fresh Market and the Keizertimes. He also distributed flyers and talked to friends and strangers alike to solicit donations to his project.
By the end of the project on Saturday, Oct. 30, Gerstner had collected 6,746 books (fiction and non-fiction), 909 VHS tapes, 85 CDs, 235 DVDs, 46 cassette tapes and 104 books on tape. He also raised $80 in cash. All the items will be donated for use or for a future book sale by the Keizer Community Library. More than 200 hours were spent on the project.
At the outset Gerstner expected to collect about 5,000 items. He said he was “definitely surprised” when the final tally came to more than 8,000 items.
Local businesses helped the future Eagle Scout. Mark DeWilde of Select Impressions printed more than 3,000 flyers that Gerstner distributed while Rick and Iva Curry of Budget Rent-a-Space provided a storage unit to hold the collected books.
Art Burr, executive director of the community library said that the library board will decide whether to hold a special book sale with the windfall from Gerstner’s project or hold them for the annual spring sale during the Iris Festival in May.
A Salem woman lived under a false identity for more than 20 years after absconding from parole was arrested Friday, Keizer Police report.
According to Sgt. Jeff Goodman, the suspect had assumed a false identity after being paroled on larceny charges in 1988.
The female suspect, police said, had assumed the name of Teresa Ortiz, and made a life for herself. She got married, had children and obtained identification cards from California and Oregon. She had also gotten a faked United States Resident Alien card, Goodman said, and opened up checking accounts under the false name.
She even opened a business – a scrapbooking store on Salem’s Lancaster Drive, Goodman added. Her husband owns and operates a forest fire-fighting company.
According to police, things began unraveling for the suspect on Wednesday, Oct 27, when she was stopped by Officer Juan Mendoza, for a traffic violation, giving the name Tammi Renee Aguilar. She was arrested for failure to carry or present a license, and taken to the Marion County Jail. There she was fingerprinted, charged with identity theft, forgery and giving false information to a police officer – then released.
A subsequent search of a national fingerprint database revealed the woman’s true identity, Goodman stated.
It turns out their suspect had a criminal record dating back to at least 1988, Goodman said. In July of 1998 a warrant was issued from the state of Oregon for violating parole, and in January 1989 authorities in Walla Walla County, Wash. then put out a felony theft warrant for the suspect, he said.
Once officers got this information they set up surveillance of her home and business. She was spotted riding in a vehicle Friday, Nov. 5, and arrested without further incident, Goodman said.
Arrested was Tracy Marie Humphreys, 46, of Salem, for a variety of charges that included forgery, identity theft, possession of a forged instrument and giving false information to police, along with outstanding warrants for theft and parole violations.
Keizer Firefighters were the first on scene at accident at Ferry and Church Street in Salem Thursday afternoon – as one of the parties involved in a crash.
Firefighter/Paramedics Chris Waldroop and Ryan Harris were returning from Salem Hospital to Keizer after taking a patient to the emergency room. As they reached the intersection of Church and Ferry, Harris, who was driving Medic 36 through the intersection, saw a Ford Taurus fail to stop at the red light.
He attempted to avoid the crash, but was struck in the rear quarter panel of the medic unit.
Waldrop and Harris immediately checked on the other driver and contacted dispatch to notify of the accident. All involved were wearing their seatbelts and all safety devices worked correctly.
The other driver who was driving a 2001 Ford Taurus was uninjured, but her vehicle received moderate damage.
The medic unit sustained several hundred dollars in damage, but was driven back to the Keizer Fire Station. Neither firefighter was injured.
Medic 36 will be taken out of service until repairs can be made, until that time the reserve medic a 1999 Freightliner will be used. The other driver received a citation.
McNary’s starters on the boys varsity soccer team played for just 40 minutes in their final game of the Central Valley Conference with West Salem, but they made the statement they’ve been striving for all season.
“There was one team on the field and that was us,” said Celtic Jake Paulson. “We were winning every ball, they had the ball maybe 10 percent of the time. They were yelling at their coach saying their strategy wasn’t working.”
After getting pulled from the field in the second half, McNary’s subs continued to hold the Titans off until the 65th minute, but the game fell apart after that ending in a 3-0 loss for McNary.
The game proved to be a launching pad for the Celtics as they entered a state playoff play-in game with Aloha on Tuesday, Nov. 2, and came out with a 3-0 win.
The first goal came from the foot of Celtic forward Nevin McLain who broke away from defenders into an open field and snuck the ball into the net under the arms of Aloha’s goalkeeper. McLain assisted on the second goal of the match by popping the ball up to Hugo Gonzalez who buried it in the back of the net with a header. Gonzalez paid it forward on an assist to Erick Cid to put the game away.
“We were ready,” said Miguel Camarena, Celtic head coach. “It was a great opportunity for us to make the state playoffs, the team knows that their level of play is increasing every day. We played at home and got to have an “Ole Ole Ole” celebration.”
The path to glory isn’t going to get any easier for the Celtics, They will travel to meet Lincoln High School, the No. 1 team in the 6A Special District Saturday, Nov. 6.
Moving forward the team will need to keep up its intensity, said McLain.
“We can’t let goals by our opponents get us down. It’s a game that can change any minute and a single goal can mean the whole game,” McLain said. “We have a really good team and we’re capable of taking a state title.”
Prior to the West Salem game, the boys faced off with the McKay Royal Scots and fought the team to a 2-2 draw on a slip-n-slide field.
McNary’s Mychael Thomas was the first to put a ball in the back of the net and it was followed up with another quick goal by Celt Hugo Gonzalez.
“The second goal put our spirits up, but then we shut down in the backfield. We got just got a little too cocky,” Thomas said. “We could have won if we’d kept our heads in it.”
Camarena cited Hugo Gonzalez, Luis Garibay, Paulson, Reece Braatz, Oscar Ramirez and Eric Sanchez with outstanding play throughout the week prior to the play-in game.
The McNary varsity volleyball team closed out its perfect season with a 3-0 win over the McKay Royal Scots, but there were moments in the game when they had to wonder if it might slip away.
“It was really hairy at times and we had one of our biggest players down,” said Hailey Francke, a junior. “But it was cool knowing that even though we weren’t at the top of our game, we could still beat them.”
The Lady Celts won in three sets, 25-17, 25-12, 25-15, but the outcome wasn’t nearly a certain as the scores made it seem.
Heavy hitter Deven Hunter was sidelined early in the first match with a nagging leg injury.
“It took us a while, but we started getting more comfortable and playing up like I knew we could,” said Rebecca LaPorte, a McNary senior.
Madi Cavell led in kills with and digs with 16 each and added three aces. Megan Holland had three blocks, four aces and 24 assists. Whittley Harrell made 12 digs.
“We were working hard, but we need to clean stuff up, make everything neater and more efficient,” Cavell said. “We know we have to work really hard and play our game on our side of the ball.”
The win reaffirmed the team’s status as the powerhouse first place team in the Central Velley Conference and earned them a bye in the play-in rounds of the state playoffs. McNary hosted South Medford, the No. 2 team in the Southern Oregon Conference, on Wednesday, Nov. 3, past press time.
McNary had the good fortune to square off against several of the top teams in the state during the preseason and in tournaments, which helped prepare them for the postseason, Francke said.
“We tended to get scared when we first hit the court against them,” she said. “But as we watched them play, we saw that we could play at their level. Competing with them now is going to be more of a mental game.”
“No matter what team we get we’re going to have to have an winning attitude,” Cavell added.
The Celtics capped off the CVC competition with six slots on the CVC All-Conference teams. Cavell, Hunter, and Harrell were named to the first team. Holland and Simona Arnautov were named to the second team. Senior Keri Stein was an honorable mention. Cavell was also voted player of the year and Dustin Walker, McNary’s head coach, was named coach of the year.
“It says a lot about the talent on our team, and the respect the other coaches have for their talent and the McNary program,” Walker said.
McNary’s freshman football team closed out a perfect 9-0 season with a 53-22 win over McKay Thursday, Oct. 28.
Isaiah Montano opened the scoring with a three-yard reception for a touchdown from Andrew Lawrence followed by Hayden McCowan point after kick. Brett Hildebrand ran 14 yards for a touchdown and McCowan kicked a 26-yard field goal for a 16-0 Celtic lead.
McKay ran the kickoff back for a touchdown to close the gap to 16-6. but Spencer Baker ran the ensuing kick back 81 yards for a touchdown. Lawrence connect with Brandon Lao 29-yard touchdown pass. McCowan made good on two point after attempts to give the Celtics a comfortable 30-6 lead after one quarter.
Hildebrand scored the only points of the second quarter on a safety and McNary led 32-6 at the half.
Baker scored his 13th touchdown of the season on a 75-yard return of the second half kickoff. Hayden Gosling hit Quinton Boyd on a 47-yard touchdown pass on Boyd’s 36th catch of the season. Along with McCowan’s two point after kicks, the Celtics led 46-14 after three quarters. McCowan put up 40 successful extra points kicks on 45 attempts and went 2-2 on field goals for the season.
Kevin Cook ran four yards for a fourth quarter touchdown and and Cody Ratliff kicked the final point after for the closing margin.
Defensively, Tanner Purkey extended his team-leading tackle total to 56 with eight in the game. Travis Klampe delivered 5 tackles, two hurries and recovered two fumbles for McNary.
Adam Snegirev added four tackles bringing his season total to 53. Zack Martin, Frank Rios, Eric Miley, and Lao also added four tackles each.
Daniel Brattain had two interceptions and Johnnie Hogan added a key fumble recovery for McNary.
The Celts rushed for 258 yards led by Hildebrand with 55 yards. Jonathan Doutt, Lawrence, Gosling, and Purkey combined for six completions on 11 attempts and 153 yards passing.
Bruce Isabel was praised for his line play on both offense and defense.
Head Coach Ted Anagnos credited his staff of former Celtics Tony Vredenburg (defense), Justin Barchus (recievers, defensive backs and special teams), Kyle Ward (line), Todd Scott (line), Conrad Venti (line), Josh Riddell (offense), Jeramy Williams (linebackers) and Matt Espinosa (conditioning) for an excellent job of coaching the young Celtics this year.
The McNary Celtic varsity football team gets the chance to hit the reset button on their season with an away game against Lakeridge High School Friday, Nov. 5.
“It’s a good start to something different,” said Celt Stevin Urban. “It gives us another shot to show people what we can actually do. But, we’re going to have to step our offense, get the ball off quick and we’re not going to have room for any mistakes.”
It’s an opportunity the team isn’t taking for granted.
“Everything we get now, we earn,” said Tim McDowell, McNary running back. “If we’re not hungry for it, our season’s over, and we don’t want to quit.”
Aside from the shot at redemption, the sideline story to the contest is another meeting with Tom Smythe, the former Celtic head coach that led the team to two state titles.
Smythe took over the Lakeridge program last year at a time when the school was contemplating cutting it altogether.
“Last year, we kept the boat afloat. Our goal this season was be competitive and we’ve done that, but now we’re getting greedy and we want some wins. That’s the mentality well take into this game,” Smythe said.
Smythe will be looking to two players on Friday to see his team through: quarterback Tommy Knecht, who’s passed for a couple of hundred yards in several games this season, and runningback and kick returner Conner Young.
“Connor had a string of punt returns that kept getting called back on penalties until last Friday when he finally got one off clean. Unfortunately, I think most of us were looking in the backfield for a flag,” Smythe said.
The Pacers are relying on their air game, which might make for one of the most interesting match-ups the Celts face this season. Celtic quarterback Kyle Ismay took the news as a gauntlet being cast at his feet.
“I don’t think they can match our passing game,” Ismay said. “We’re going to out pass them and we’re going to outhit them and win this one.”
If nothing else, the Celtics have history on their side. McNary won the teams’ last contest in the 2009 season 27-14. McDowell expected it to come down to which team has the tougher mental attitude.
“Everyone has to go out with the mentality that they’re the best person in their position and they’re going to do their job better than whoever lines up against them,” he said.
After hours of testimony Keizer city councilors opted Monday night not to stop planned purchases to fluoridate five of the city’s wells.
The city currently fluoridates nine wells and is contractually obligated to add it to a tenth well. The city’s water master plan calls for adding fluoridating equipment to all the city’s wells.
Even if the proposal had passed it would not have ended fluoridation in Keizer completely.
Voting to stop the equipment purchase: Councilors Richard Walsh and Brandon Smith
Voting to continue the equipment purchase: Mayor Lore Christopher, Councilors Cathy Clark, David McKane, Mark Caillier and Jim Taylor.
The vote concluded three-plus hours of passionate testimony that went well into the evening. A plethora of area dentists testified on fluoride’s benefits.
Public Works Director Rob Kissler said Keizer’s water is 100 percent fluoridated approximately 80 percent of the time. The exception is the summer months, when water usage goes up due in part to irrigation, filling swimming pools and the like.
During those months, wells that normally aren’t used much see more usage. Some of these wells are not fluoridated, meaning people who live near them may not be getting the full amount of fluoride normally added to the system.
The additional purchases and installation would cost about $48,015.
One Newberg-based dentist said uneven levels of fluoride make it difficult for dentists to know if – and how much – fluoride to prescribe a patient.
“It’s not like water is in a great big container,” said Dr. April Love.
Dentists hammered home the point that dental health is a key component of overall well-being.
Dr. H. Clayton Sterns said the anti-fluoride science has been “twisted,” saying even water has harmful effects in certain forms.
“I see people in pain, swollen and infected, on a daily basis,” he added. Then, addressing Councilor Richard Walsh, who first questioned fluoridating city water, “to withhold that protection to the citizens of Keizer – you should be ashamed.”
While Dr. Bill Osumnson testified at a work session last month about potential health dangers of fluoride, most anti-fluoridation testimony centered around libertarian ethos – questioning whether all citizens should be served fluoridated water, and others, like Smith, who aren’t sure it’s government’s role to provide any sort of health care.
“This is a philosophical issue on the role of city government,” Smith said. “… I just don’t believe it is the role of city government to provide medical service. But I don’t sit here making medical judgment on the efficacy of fluoride.”
Christopher cited a vote in the 1980s approving adding fluoride in the city’s water, and said she would stand by that unless residents voted otherwise.
McKane argued for consistency in the city’s fluoridation levels.
“A fluoridated water system is a benefit to our community,” McKane said. “… It’s important. I believe that with my heart and soul.”
Walsh addressed the issue from a budgetary perspective.
“We question whether we need a library, whether we need parks and how many people should be there,” Walsh said. “… We scratched out $300 here and $3,000 there. We decided we couldn’t put port-a-potties in parks … but we decided fluoride was the sacred cow we couldn’t touch.
“It’s not that one side wants to hurt children and the other side wants to destroy teeth,” he added. “… We all want what’s best for the community.”
In other business, the Council:
• Approved creation of a special agriculture zone. This was done in order to bring a planned land addition to Keizer Rapids Park into the city limits. It prohibits most kinds of development.
• Authorized the mayor to sign an intergovernmental agreement beginning the Salem Parkway – KROC Center access study.
• Approved spending up to $2,400 for office furnishings for new employees.
With few exceptions the just completed midterm campaign was among the nastiest in recent memory. Name-calling and personal attacks were in evidence across the country. It started in 2009 when many Congressmembers were met at hometown meetings by constituients angry about health care reform, which gave rise to the Tea Party. Anger was the mood that permeated the midterm elections.
The rest of the country can take some civility lessons from Keizer.
At the city council meeting on Monday, Nov. 1, the issue of fluoridation took center stage. Supporters and opponents of fluoride in city water took their three minutes to testify. Fluoridation is an emotional as well as a scientific and wellness issue. Some of the testimony and exchanges became testy and uncomfortable.
Mayor Lore Christopher pronounced early during public comments that personal remarks would not be tolerated—neither from those speaking to the council or from councilmembers. She lightly rebuked Councilor Richard Walsh for his questioning of Dr. Brian Gilmour, a Salem dentist, about methods used to categorize fluoride as a hazardous material. The hearing on fluoridation could have easily degenerated into loud, nasty exchanges but Christopher’s cool head and demand for decorum kept the proceedings civil.
There will be issues that inevitably divide the council and the community. The differences we face should never trump our ability to civilly communicate across the divide. The discussion of fluoridation was, thankfully, a rare example of testiness. But with Christopher leading the meetings it will remain a rare occurance.
With a potentially tied state legislature and a divided Congress civility will be required more than ever. They should conduct the state’s and the country’s business the Keizer way.
The Keizer Art Association, which had humble beginnings, has become a player on the art and city scene.
Under the direction of past and present presidents such as Jonathan Boys and Robert Selby plus the other officers and board members, the art association offers art classes, art shows and exhibits at the Enid Joy Mount Gallery at the Keizer Heritage Center on the civic center campus.
The all-volunteer organization will kick off the holiday season with its annual Black/White & Gray show in November with a reception on Saturday, Nov. 6. The show, the biggest of the year for the association, showcases paintings, photos and sculpture by regional artists. It is a free show that Keizerites can attend to get a taste of what local artists are producing.
The Black/White & Gray Show is held every November but there are many other opportunities to get close to art. The Kidzart program in the summer offers Keizer’s kids the chance to get their hands and minds into different projects. For adults the association’s class offerings are designed for both the amateur and advanced artist.
The art association is one of the non-profit organizations that make Keizer a good place to live. Professional art of all types can be found in its gallery in a comfortable setting that is welcoming rather than intimidating.
The art association is also inthe midst of planning the Art Show and Mayor’s Invitational in February, which is fast becoming one of Keizer’s major events.
From humble beginnings the Keizer Art Association is all grown up. —LAZ