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Home arrow News arrow Local News arrow Magazine touts Baker City's historic homes

Magazine touts Baker City's historic homes


By JAYSON JACOBY

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 A magazine has picked Baker City as one of America's best "Old-House Neighborhoods."

This Old House magazine chose 61 cities for the 2012 honor.

Among the 14 winners in the west region, Baker City was the only Oregon city selected.

"With its gorgeous surroundings and growing artistic community, locals believe Baker City is poised to become the Santa Fe of the northwest," according to a story on the magazine's website, www.thisoldhouse.com.

City Manager Mike Kee received an email Tuesday from Karen Greco, of the magazine's public relations staff, notifying him of the award.

"After researching hundreds of cities, towns and neighborhoods throughout the United States and Canada, we’ve decided your neighborhood deserves special recognition for its astonishing selection of great homes, and the community spirit that supports them," Greco wrote.

The story on This Old House's website includes a photograph of Pat and Kristi Flanagan's home at 1790 Fourth St.

The Queen Anne-style home, which has a distinctive hexagonal two-story bay tower, was built around 1901.

Kristi Flanagan said she often sees people photographing her home.

She said it's exciting that one of those photographs ended up on the website of a magazine that's affiliated with the popular public broadcasting TV program of the same name.

Kee said he knew nothing about the magazine's contest until he got the email from Greco.

"It was a pleasant surprise," Kee said.

By which he means the contest, not the notion that Baker City has an enviable inventory of well-preserved homes.

"That confirms what I already knew," said Kee, who grew up in Baker City.

Ann Mehaffy, who recently retired as manager of Historic Baker City Inc., said she and Timothy Bishop, Baker County's tourism marketing director, both learned about the contest last year by way of an email.

They, along with Sarah LeCompte, who manages the Oregon Trail Interpretive Center and has a background in historic architecture, prepared a packet of information, including photographs, to submit as Baker City's contest entry.

Mehaffy said she didn't hear from magazine officials until about two weeks ago, when a researcher called to confirm the information the local trio had turned in last year.

 
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