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Celebrate Oregon's birthday Feb. 14

The public is invited to celebrate Oregon’s birthday on Friday, Feb. 14, Valentine’s Day, with a free event at the Baker Heritage Museum, 2480 Grove St., at 7 p.m.

Oregon became a state on Feb. 14, 1859.

The party in the Museum’s ballroom will include a program called “Ranching in the Past,” featuring emcee Jessie Ritch and speakers Fred Warner Sr., Dick Kirby and Dan Warnock, who will talk about their families’ historic ranches.


Hunter education classes scheduled

The Baker County hunter education instructors have scheduled dates for a pair of hunter ed classes this year.

The first class of 2014 will start Feb. 17 and continue on Feb. 19, 21, 24, 26 and 28. The class will run from 5:30 p.m. to 8:30 p.m. at the Powder River Sportsman’s Club, 2690 Broadway St., except for the Feb. 28 class, which will be a field session starting at 10 a.m. at the Virtue Flat Range.


County planners to consider mining permit

The Baker County Planning Commission will meet Thursday evening in Baker City to consider a proposal to allow mining near Bridgeport, south of Dooley Mountain.

The meeting will start at 6 p.m. at the Courthouse, 1995 Third St. 

Auburn Creek Ranch LLC has applied for a conditional use permit to allow mining in the exclusive farm use and timber-grazing zones.

The business owns about 2,730 acres along Bridgeport Lane, according to county assessor's office records.


Kennedy's Eastside Market legacy to continue

By Pat Caldwell

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For Baker City’s Teresa Perkins tradition still matters.

Perkins — who is in the process of purchasing Kennedy’s Eastside Grocery — said while a desire to own her own business played a major role in her decision, the potential to continue a hometown legacy also fueled her choice.

Perkins stepped behind the counter at the venerated Baker City establishment late last week. She said she is purchasing the business from current owners — Kevin Logsdon and Jay Raffety — and is happy about her new role as a small business owner.

“I’m just excited about the opportunity,” Perkins said.

Over the years, Kennedy’s Market secured a special type of veneration for residents and became a traditional fixture in the community.

Known for “the coldest beer and cheapest pop” the small store epitomized the image of the corner market.



Gusty winds blamed for power outages

By Pat Caldwell

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Electricity is one of the definitive elements of modern society.

The electricity that surges through the massive American power grid lights our homes, heats our kitchens and personifies progress.

Until it suddenly goes out.

In a flash, all of our seemingly state-of-the-art pieces of technology are transformed into blocks of plastic and glass. 


Private Woodlands Association's annual meeting Jan. 23

Baker County’s Private Woodlands Association will have its annual meeting Jan. 23 at Brent and Eileen Gyllenberg’s ranch south of Baker City.

In addition to the election of new officers and a discussion of issues such as the Blue Mountain Woodland Owner Cooperative, the annual meeting will be a chance for woodland owners to socialize and enjoy a potluck dinner featuring the Gyllenbergs’ free-range buffalo.

There will be a carpool, with vehicles leaving the OSU Extension Office, 2600 East St. in Baker City, at 5:30 p.m., returning about 8:30 p.m.

If the weather is inclement, the meeting will take place at the Extension Office instead.


Dense fog advisory for Baker County

The National Weather Service has issued a dense fog advisory for Baker County.

The persistent high pressure has created a temperature inversion that has trapped cold and moist air near the ground in the region's valleys, an ideal combination for fog to form.

The advisory will be in effect until 10 a.m. today.

Visibility measured at the Baker City Airport has been as low as one-quarter mile this morning.

Similar weather is forecast for the next several days.

More information is available at http://www.wrh.noaa.gov/boi


County passes eminent domain clause, but not happily

By Chris Collins

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The Baker County Board of Commissioners reluctantly approved a resolution at its meeting last week that would allow it to “exercise the right of eminent domain” regarding right-of-way acquisition on the Best Frontage Road project.

Commission Chairman Fred Warner Jr. and Commissioners Tim Kerns and Mark Bennett all voiced their distaste for a declaration of eminent domain, which would allow the county to condemn property needed to complete the Best Frontage Road project if any of several landowners refused to cooperate. Landowners would receive “just compensation” for land acquired for the project.

The commissioners said they would not have agreed to the resolution without this statement that gives the county options: “Baker County expressly reserves its jurisdiction to determine the necessity or propriety of any acquisition, its quantity, quality, or locality, and to change or abandon any acquisition."


City Delays Decision On Downtown Dollars

S. John Collins/Baker City Herald The bulk of money raised through the downtown Economic Improvement District, from business licenses and property tax assessments, goes to Historic Baker City, Inc. Enough property owners voted against the tax that the city can no longer impose it. The City Council hasn’t decided what to do about business licenses.

By Pat Caldwell

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The Baker City Council ratified several ordinances during its Tuesday night session but decided to table a proposal regarding the main source of money for Historic Baker City Inc.

The council finalized new regulations on dangerous dogs, and approved the second of three readings of an ordinance banning smoking in city parks and along the Leo Adler Memorial Parkway.

But it was the proposed renewal of the downtown Economic Improvement District (EID) that sparked the most comments from a large number of people on hand for the meeting.


Baker man in fair shape after accidental gunshot

By Chris Collins

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Baker City Police officers are continuing to investigate an apparent accidental self-inflicted gunshot wound to the upper left leg of a Baker City man.

Eric Lee Cavyell, 23, was taken by Baker City ambulance to St. Alphonsus Medical Center-Baker City and later flown by Life Flight air ambulance to Boise, according to a press release issued by police at about 7:30 Tuesday morning.

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