Month: February 2016

Miracle of Christmas sets record

By CRAIG MURPHY Of the Keizertimes When it comes to a big event like the Keizer Miracle of Christmas Lights Display held each December in the Gubser neighborhood, there are things that can point to growth. On busy nights the line of vehicles waiting to start the route of Christmas lights can stretch to Lockhaven Drive. Another sign of growth deals with the food donation aspect of the event. After all, the event is a fundraiser for Marion-Polk Food Share, with canned food and cash donations accepted throughout the three-week run. Volunteers sign up to help with the collection every night. Brigett Eisle, who has run the event the last few years with husband Mike, revealed some numbers from the 2015 event at the Feb. 18 Greater Gubser Neighborhood Association meeting. Rick Gaupo, president and CEO of the Food Share, was also on hand. Eisle counted and found more than two-thirds of houses along the route were lit up. “We had waiting lists of people wanting to participate and help out,” she said. “We had to turn away 10 groups this year that wanted to help. We had so many people, we had a waiting list. If people can see what we’re doing, it just brings the community together even more.” Another way Eisle knows the event is growing? She’s having to buy more candy canes to pass out...

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Girls cage Grizzlies

By ERIC A. HOWALD Of the Keizertimes The McNary High School girls varsity basketball team completed its first run through the Greater Valley Conference with a 53-34 win over McMinnville High School Friday, Jan. 22. The Lady Celts are currently second in the GVC with a record of 7-1. South Salem was the only team to beat the Celts in the first round-robin, but Derick Handley, McNary head coach, doesn’t want the team resting on its laurels. “I really hope that we don’t settle. I hope the girls aren’t satisfied with taking second in the league because our goals have been much bigger than that the entire season” Handley said. With games on tap vs. North Salem and Forest Grove high schools before getting another shot at the Saxons, Celt senior Kaelie Flores said it’s difficult to not look past the next two games to the one on the horizon. “We definitely have our eyes on South, but we can’t overlook North and Forest Grove. We have to work on ourselves in those games to be ready for (South),” Flores said. Sophomore Kailey Doutt said there are still things for McNary’s team to improve upon in the run-up to the South game, which the Celts host Tuesday, Feb. 2. “Our team defense has been a lot better, but we can get better in our offense and more consistent,” Doutt...

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Water issue gets resolved at WMS

It took nearly two weeks, but an issue with the water at Whiteaker Middle School was finally resolved last week. Julia DeWitt, principal of the middle school located at 1605 Lockhaven Drive NE, said sediment was finally cleared and the water service interruption ended on Jan. 18. “The origin of the issue stemmed from a maintenance service over the winter break,” DeWitt said. “Our fire suppression system was flushed by an outside contractor. Through the process of pushing a large volume of water and high amount of pressure, manganese from Keizer’s main lines broke loose and entered Whiteaker’s domestic water supply/lines.” DeWitt said school leaders consulted with the Marion County Environmental Health Department and Keizer City Water Department. “We flushed our lines over a series of days until it ran clear everywhere,” she said. “Then, we followed with tests for bacteria, metals (pipe degradation) and pH levels – all of which have come back clear –  before going back online.” DeWitt said the process took about two weeks. “Our service interruption lasted from the morning we returned from the winter break, Jan. 5 through Jan. 18,” she said. “It took a solid eight days of flushing Whiteaker’s water lines for our water to run clear of sediment. The additional days were due to waiting on final lab results.” During the water service interruption, the Salem Keizer School District provided...

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