Day: March 25, 2011

Disasters end exchange student’s stay in Japan

By ERIC A. HOWALD Of the Keizertimes In recent weeks, many have made mention of the orderly response to the quake, tsunamis and nuclear crisis in Japan, but it came as no surprise to McNary student Josh Pentecost. “People form orderly lines, there hasn’t been any looting or violence and it reflects how nice they are and how well they take care of each other. That really stood out,” said Pentecost, who returned last week from the land of the rising sun. He was part of a Rotary exchange student program that was meant to keep him in Japan until the end of the school year, but was cut short due to the trifecta of disasters. Pentecost was in a P.E. class when the quake struck his city,  Maebashi, capital of the Gunma Prefecture, about 200 kilometers away from the epicenter of the 9.0 quake. It registered as a 6.0 in his area. “It lasted a couple of minutes and we took cover under a raised track. Nothing fell, but the lights went out. It stopped and then it happened again,” he said. The students exited the building after a third quake hit and the students ran back in to grab their things and went home. “The first day, there were more than 100 aftershocks in 10 hours,” he said. Despite the trip’s early ending, Pentecost said his time...

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Keizerite celebrates century of living

Keizerite Mary Jo Hanna celebrated her 100th birthday Friday, March 25. We sent her a questionnaire about her life and times and this is what she sent back. KT: When and where were you born? MJH: I was born to Bertha and Fred Drost on March 25, 1911, in Seattle Wash. Fred was a Canada native and Bertha hailed from Indiana. KT: What was life like growing up? MJH: We did a lot of walking along the city streets of Seattle visiting the stores at Christmas time and playing in the park. Rolling up the rug to have friends and neighbors over for music and dancing. Taking the train to Indiana and catching the 1918 flu. Watching the Stanley Steamer cars go down hill and then turn around and go backwards to have enough power to make it up the hill. KT: Where did you go to school? MJH: Gatewood School in Seattle. I didn’t like school but always had an inquisitive mind and a desire to learn about almost anything. It still exists today. I graduated from West Seattle high school. KT: What three people that have inspired you? MJH: 1. The queen of England: “She’s such a cute little Queen and such a lady.” 2. Rose Kennedy: “I don’t know how she held up with her sons being killed like that. She’s very strong” 3. John Wayne:...

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Of Jaegers and Yurchenkos… Gymnast sets sights on college career

By ERIC A. HOWALD Of the Keizertimes Taylor Keeker can do things on a 4-inch balance beam that most people would be afraid to do on solid ground attached to a safety rig with spotters. “Right now I’m working on a back handspring layout step out,” said Keeker, a gymnast, and McNary High School senior. At a recent meet she split the beam – landed straddling the bar with a leg on either side –  during the maneuver. “It hurts, but it happens.” While some athletes bemoan the time needed to excel at their sport, few have the tenacity of gymnasts. A typical week for Keeker means daily drives to Portland’s Multnomah Athletic Club for four-hour training sessions after school and an additional five- or six-hour regimen on the weekend. “That includes warm-ups and conditioning and about 45 minutes working each routine from uneven bars to floor to vault and high beam,” she said. While the training is intense, Keeker has gotten noticed for her talent. She’s currently considering a walk-on role at Oregon State University next year, but hasn’t committed to anything. She’s a Level 10 in the sport, the highest ranking a gymnast can receive below elite, which is typically reserved for Olympic hopefuls. During spring break, her coaches added an extra hour to the daily practice in order to prepare for the state meet held this...

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Lady Celts leap out to 3-0 start

The McNary High School varsity softball team is off to a promising three-win start for their 2011 season. The Lady Celts blew past Canby High School in a rain-soaked home opener Thursday, March 17. Olivia Yarbrough went four for four with two runs scored and two RBIs on the way to a 9-5 win. Pitcher Jordyn Hanson was credited with the win. Hanson gave up a stingy three hits, and went three for four with a triple in 6-1 win over the Barlow High School Monday, March 21. The team took part in a three-day tournament at Canby High School Hailey Decker went three for three with a triple and a home run. Decker played a pivotal role in the Celts follow-up 5-3 victory over Aloha High School the same day. She went three for four with three RBIs and three runs...

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The giving’s the thing at Madrigal dinner

By ERIC A. HOWALD Of the Keizertimes LeRoy Hedberg wants anyone planning on attending McNary High School choir’s madrigal dinner and auction to know two things before they sit down at their table: prepare to be entertained and there’s not going to be any deals. “We’re not there for deals. If people want a deal they need to go to a bargain house, we’re there to raise some money,” Hedberg, a professional auctioneer, said. The second annual fundraising dinner and auction for the McNary choir – A Knight of Song –  is slated Saturday, April 2, at the Keizer Renaissance Inn. The silent auction will begin at 5 p.m., dinner starts at 6 p.m.  Tickets for the event are $35 each and include a three-course dinner. Tables are available for $280. The Madrigal Dinner is a 21st Century re-creation of renaissance feasts held in the great baronial halls throughout England during the 12 days of Christmas minus the nod to the holiday season. The choir will perform. Hedburg, a Salem resident, will run the oral auction in a return performance after a successful first event that raised more than $20,000. He got his start in auctioneering as a child. An advertisement for the American Tobacco Company with footage of an auctioneer chanting his way down rows of tobacco pallets propelled him to mimic the style for his friends and...

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