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There’s no such thing as too much cowbell


Of the Keizertimes

There are plenty of events for runners next month.

But if running isn’t your thing, there is still an opportunity for live music – provided by you.

Christine Dieker, executive director of the Keizer Chamber of Commerce, gave an update on the 27th annual Iris Festival presented by Silverton Health at the April 10 West Keizer Neighborhood Association (WKNA) meeting.

Iris Festival officially kicks off May 1 with the Mayor’s Prayer Breakfast, with most events taking place May 15 to 18.

In addition to the parade on May 17, there will be runs galore.

Over the course of two days there will be a Kidz 3K, a 5K, a 10K, a half marathon and a full marathon.

“Starting at 7 a.m. there will be a full marathon,” Dieker said. “This is the first time in the region we’ve had a full marathon. I expect probably 100 participants. If we had that many, I would be happy.”

Dieker said the runs will go down Windsor Island Drive, with the full marathon going down 13 miles before turning around and coming back along the same route.

“These participants will be on the road,” Dieker said. “It would be helpful if cars are not on the road. If you care to and have skills as a musician or want to play your favorite music, it’s great for runners to have entertainment. You can also wave, bang pots and pans or whatever else you’d like to do. Any help you would like to offer or give, we’d appreciate it.”

In other recent WKNA business:

• Bill Lawyer, Public Works director for Keizer, explained road work projects city staff will be doing this summer within the WKNA boundaries.

“We are planning to rebuild Shoreline Drive from Cummings Lane to Wayne Drive,” Lawyer said. “This will be replacing the sidewalk and pavement. We can’t just resurface, because it’s too bad. We have to rebuild it. Work will include replacing the curbs and sidewalks, updating stormwater catch basins and a new driving surface.

“The sidewalks will be widened to five feet,” he added. “The existing sidewalks now vary from three feet to four feet wide. We also have to bring everything up to current ADA (American with Disabilities Act) standards.”

Lawyer said the road width itself will remain at 30 feet, while there will be ADA compliant drop ramps at all intersections.

“We designed it to match what’s already there as much as we can,” Lawyer said. “Existing curb heights are matched, to impact property owners as little as possible. We will go to bid in the next three weeks, get those back in May, start in July and it should be done in 90 days.”

Lawyer noted there are also some resurfacing projects being done this summer.

“We try to resurface each year to prevent roads from falling into Shoreline’s condition,” he said. “We’re putting nine roads out to bid; six are in your area. We’re hoping we can get these projects done so we focus on big roads like Cherry and River in the future; big, expensive projects that will take up all of our budget for one or two budget cycles.”

• Due to an event at the Keizer Civic Center, this month’s WKNA meeting was held next door at the Keizer Heritage Center. The next WKNA meeting will be held Thursday, May 8 at 7 p.m. at the civic center. That is expected to be the last WKNA meeting until September.