The McNary High School swim teams won precious few races in their recent dual meet with South Salem High School, but placers and standout junior varsity performances helped their cause.
“It was surprising how well we actually did,” said Lady Celt Anjelica Glassey. “We have a lot of strong freshmen this year and we’ve got some solid relay teams.”
The girls lost their side of the meet 109-61.
Glassey turned in a second place finish in the 100 fly and topped the podium in the 100 backstroke with a time of 1:11.25. She’s hoping to crack 1:10 before the end of the season.
“My fly time didn’t feel as good as it ended up being, but the backstroke has always been my best race,” she said.
Glassey was also part of second-place relay teams in the 400 free and 200 medley. Head Coach Kim Phillips is making a change starting this week in the 200 medley, which will see junior Josie Davis take over the butterfly leg.
“It will be good, but we’ll all have to improve our times,” Glassey said.
Other race winners for the girls were: Mikaela Benson in the 200 junior varsity free with a time of 2:31.27; Kiana Briones in the 200 individual medley with a time of 2:30.95; Emily McNichols in the JV 50 free in 30.54; and Morgan Kuch in the JV 100 breast with a time of 1:27.20.
McNichols’ time in the 50 free was a four second personal record (PR) over the last time she swam the race in her freshman year.
“Kim threw me into it and I think I surprised both of us,” McNichols said.
The Saxon boys won their side of the meet with a final score of 111-59.
Celtic winners were: Alex Fox in the 200 free with a time of 1:55.28; Perry Groves in the varsity 50 free in 22.59, Eli Purser in the JV 50 free in 25.48; Groves in the 100 free in 52.02; and Fox, Evan Alger, Sloane Yerger and Groves in the 200 free relay in 1:36.29.
Alger said it was a standout day for the entire 200 relay team.
“We all had nice dives and nice turns,” Alger said.
Alger also recorded a new PR by four seconds in the 500 free. His meet time was 6:16.81.
The Celts are steadily cruising toward the district meet with high expectations.
“At district, we’ll just need all the PR’s we can get,” Alger said.
A new program could allow murals to be put up in Keizer after all.
City Attorney Shannon Johnson has been working on an amendment to the city’s sign code, in light of plans to install the city’s first mural on the side of Keizer Florist. An artist has already been selected, with plans calling for the mural to be done in August.
While Mayor Lore Christopher initially thought the process would be easy, Johnson looked into it and found the city’s sign code adopted in 1990 consider murals to be signs and thus doesn’t allow them.
“There were no murals in town at the time and the concern was that a future mural would be a way to get around the sign regulations,” Johnson said at the Jan. 21 Keizer City Council meeting. “The only options to allow murals would be to increase sign area allowances significantly, allow ‘commercial murals’ or implement a Public Art program. A Public Art program is the only method that would preserve the sign regulations.”
Johnson said Public Art programs in Portland, Salem and Beaverton were looked at. He suggested forming a Keizer Arts Commission with a set criteria.
“The artist or property owner would make an application (for art) to the commission and would be approved or not,” Johnson said. “It would technically be owned by the city, so we get some safeguards. The Portland program has something we won’t be able to add: money. They fund it.”
Johnson noted the Keizer Planning Commission in December unanimously voted to approve an amendment to allow public art – in particular murals – as an exception or exemption to sign code regulations.
Christopher suggested checking with Cottage Grove and Silverton about how they have handled the issue, since both cities have murals.
“I know another artist has approached us about doing a mural,” Christopher said.
Councilor Dennis Koho expressed concerns about an application coming in for art “a large number of citizens might find distasteful.”
Johnson noted a similar concern was brought up in the Planning Commission meeting.
“One question they had was could we be opening a can of worms?” Johnson said. “The answer is yes. There is a potential for someone to submit a thing the way you suggested.”
Koho opined business owners would be careful about what to put up.
“People aren’t going to want to put up something that drives customers away,” he said. “They will want to put up things that are tasteful.”
Staff was directed to bring back an ordinance for adopting the amendment at a later council meeting.