Month: September 2014

KRP design charette Saturday

By CRAIG MURPHY Of the Keizertimes John Morgan has a hunch he knows what the hot topic will be Saturday morning. From 10 a.m. to noon Saturday, Sept. 27 at the Keizer Civic Center, Morgan will be leading a design charette to look at what amenities should be added to 28 extra acres at Keizer Rapids Park. The charette is a continuation of the planning process for the Big Toy project, which originally was going to be built at KRP last week. Instead, the construction has been pushed back to June and a location hasn’t been finalized. The extra time is allowing for the KRP master plan to be updated as 28 additional acres are being annexed in as part of the Urban Growth Boundary. A final list of additions to the master plan and a location for the Big Toy are expected to be decided by Keizer City Councilors at their Nov. 3 meeting. Between 30 and 40 people are expected to be on hand Saturday morning, representing various groups and organizations such as neighborhood associations and youth sports leagues. Morgan, who was Keizer’s first director of Community Development from 1990 to 1998, has been at Keizer Parks and Recreational Board meetings as well as neighborhood association meetings. As such, he has a prediction of what the hot-button topic will be. “It’s really evident there is split opinion,”...

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KHT’s Carnage dares you to laugh despite touchy subject matter

By ERIC A. HOWALD Of the Keizertimes Laughter is not often thought of as an act of courage, but a healthy dose of the latter is needed to enjoy Keizer Homegrown Theatre’s production of God of Carnage. Courage is needed because there are some outright uncomfortable moments crying out to be laughed at in the story about two couples trying to figure out how to deal with a dust-up between their children, an altercation that left one of the boys missing two teeth. Social niceties are rapidly replaced by more primal and raw emotion as conflict escalates. The play premiered Thursday, Sept. 25, and continues with shows Sept. 26 and 27 and Oct. 2, 3 and 4 at the Keizer Civic Center. Curtain time is 7 p.m. The play contains adult subject matter and language.Tickets are $12, or $10 for students and seniors. Director Jesse Whitehead said laying bare the discomfort the couples have with each other is what makes the material such a joy to work from. “I’ve seen some productions where the company took an almost cartoony take on the script, but it feels more wonderfully uncomfortable the closer it feels to real life. I like that as an audience member, and I hope others do, too,” Whitehead said. Bringing to life the script, written by Yasmina Reza and translated by Christopher Hampton, are three former students...

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Killer gets 30 years

By CRAIG MURPHY Of the Keizertimes SALEM – With her son’s killer found guilty, Jean Ausborn had a few things to say. Two days after Victor David Smith was found guilty by a Marion County Circuit Court jury in the July 2004 murder of Keizer’s Phillip Lynn Johnson, judge Tom Hart sentenced Smith, 38, to a minimum of 30 years in prison on Sept. 18. While Smith declined to speak, Ausborn, surrounded nearby by family members who sat through the whole trial this month as well as the first one in June, spoke. “Victor David Smith brutally murdered Phillip Lynn Johnson and took him away from his mother, sister, brother, aunts, uncles and cousins,” Ausborn said after initially thanking those who brought Smith to justice. “He will never meet his grandchildren because of a horrible act of violence committed by Victor David Smith.” Ausborn then turned to face Smith. “What a coward you are to shoot Phillip in the back after you stalked him under the cover of darkness,” she said. “And for that despicable act, the worst thing that can happen to you will happen. Victor, you’ve given our family a life sentence of grief and heartache so it is fitting that you get the same life sentence in prison and suffer the same fate of never being free again. “On the night of July 1, 2004, you...

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Mural, mural on the wall

Keizer’s first public mural on the western wall of Keizer Florist will be dedicated on Wednesday, Oct. 1. This will be what is promised to be the first of a number of murals that someday will decorate our community. The Keizer Art Association was instrumental in bringing the mural about. They cited the famed murals in downtown Silverton as the inspiration for Colleen Goodwin Chronister’s Valley Treasures, which highlights the area’s agricultural heritage—irises, hops and grapes. The art association should retake the lead on Keizer’s public art. It was the engine that helped established the program which resulted in whimsical sculptures being placed along River Road, as well as the first few Mayor’s Art Invitationals. There is excitment in some quarters about the mural, believing they can do for Keizer what they have done for Silverton—though that’s highly unlikely. Some envision murals from one end of Keizer to the other. Murals will add color to our community, but we don’t want to over do it. Public art should be a combination of sculptures, murals and paintings lining the walls of Keizer Civic Center. The Keizer Chamber Foundation took on a role of fundraising for public art, it’s a role they should maintain and expand. But no organization can do a public art program alone—the art association, the foundation and the city should work together to bring art to the...

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Columnist is wrong on search

To the Editor:  I would like to offer my thoughts on Mr. Gene McIntyre’s opinion of the Chemeketa Community College selection process concerning choosing a president (Chemeketa search should irk taypayers, Keizertimes, Sept. 19). I served for 18 years on the Chemeketa Board and as chair of the board. I was greatly involved in the last two presidential searches for the selection of Presidents Gretchen Schuette and Cheryl Roberts. The board chooses not to pay head hunters or outside consultants for its presidential search.  Head hunters can cost tens of thousands of dollars over what we paid Vicky Willis.  When I was on the board we preferred to keep our process in house because of cost.  The present board will draw great experience from contracting with Ms. Willis again because of her experience in handling this important job. It is my opinion that perhaps Gene McIntyre’s fight should be with the PERS system, a system that is governed by the state and its own board of directors. The Chemeketa board has always been responsible with the taxpayer’s money and this current process they have chosen is a good example of this.  The board is getting an experienced consultant, who just happened to work for Chemeketa and knows the institution very well. JoAnne Beilke...

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