Mark Caillier just can’t get away from the Keizer Civic Center.
Leaving the Keizer City Council at the start of last year didn’t do it. After all, Caillier is part of a couple of groups that meet regularly at city hall, including The Big Toy at Keizer Rapids Park project.
Next month, for the second year, Caillier is overseeing a project to clean up around the grounds of the civic center. The landscaping work parties will take place Feb. 8 and 22, from 9 a.m. to noon on both days.
“Last year we knew we had a core group of people, so it was only one day,” Caillier said. “I’m not sure about this year, thus the two days. The community center is maintained by volunteers in terms of landscaping.”
Caillier said about 60 people from Salem Baptist Church got the work done in three hours last year. While he knows of some people coming this year, Caillier isn’t exactly sure how many that will be.
“We’ll have folks bringing in hedge trimmers, loppers, things like that,” he said. “Folks that know how to use them, we could certainly use their help. The big job is cleaning and dumping material into dumpsters and dump trucks. We could use some wheelbarrows and trash cans. There is plenty of work to do. There is stuff for everyone.”
Work will include trimming bushes around Keizer Community Center and also doing landscape work at Chalmers-Jones Park behind city hall. The Claggett Creek Watershed Council, of which Caillier is part, is sponsoring the clean-up.
“All the stuff has to be dumped,” Caillier said. “The native species which were planted grow well, but the down side is that when they get trimmed back, they grow faster. We need to use a bush trimmer for some of this stuff. If we have enough people, I’d like to add Chalmers-Jones around the fountain this year.”
Those interested in helping out can contact Caillier at 503-930-7481 or at [email protected] Groups or individuals alike can participate.
“Or people can just show up,” Caillier said. “We’ll take any and all help. It’s not hard work.”
Even when everything seems to be going well, the McNary High School boys varsity basketball teams seems to end up on the bruising side of a bad break.
Such was the case for the Celts in their game with the McKay High School Royal Scots Friday, Jan. 24. The teams were tied 55-55 in the game’s final seconds when Scot Jacob Brustad hit a buzzer-beating three-pointer, The game was McNary’s fourth consecutive loss since starting league play.
“It was as good a game as we had all year,” said Ryan Kirch, McNary head coach. “We had six turnovers, we didn’t miss a free throw in the second half, we shot 50 percent from the field in game and 60 percent in the second half.”
McNary was never far out of reach from the second-place Scots. The Keizer team trailed by three at the half and had outshot the Scots in the second half until the final second. Celt Devon Dunagan had a breakout game with 16 points and seven rebounds.
“We were more focused and executed our plays better,” said Celt Tregg Peterson. “Devon dominated inside and that was a big help.”
Johnathan Doutt had 13 points with three treys in the game; Peterson had 10; Trent Van Cleave had six; and Connor Goff had four.
Kirch said Dunagan is expected to make more waves having fully recovered from a broken ankle he suffered just prior to the start of the season.
Prior to the McKay game, McNary squared off with Sprague High School on the road Tuesday, Jan. 21. The Celtics rallied from trailing the Olys 30-18 at halftime to finish the game in a much tighter 60-58 loss.
“We had a great second half against Sprague, but we missed 10 or 11 shots that made the difference. We weren’t quite ready to play at the start of the game,” Kirch said.
Peterson led the team with 14 points; Doutt put up 13; Van Cleave had nine; Dunagan had 7; Hayden Gosling had five; Goff had four and Hayden McCowan sunk one from the free throw line. McNary had eight three-point goals on the night; Peterson and and Doutt had three each.
Despite facing clutch situations in both games, Gosling said the team has a different feel now than it did even a few weeks ago.
“Before we were just looking for individuals to make plays, but now we’re clicking as a team,” he said. “We know we can shoot the ball from the perimeter against some of the teams that are bigger than us, but we have to maintain the leads when we get them.”
The loss to McKay was one of the hardest to swallow, but Kirch said the team is responding well.
“I’m proud of our kids’ response to it. They are able to leave the gym knowing they can beat these teams,” Kirch said. “We just have to get over the hump and take one of the close ones.”
McNary finished its first run through the Central Val