Author: Lyndon Zaitz

Love it or lose it

The dog park at Keizer Rapids Park is garnering as many complaints as kudos.  The dog park, a vision of Keizer leaders and others, was a smash hit when it opened several years ago.  Owners socialize with friends as their dogs run free in the dog park. The park is fenced, one side built for large dogs and the other side for small dogs.. The city built the dog park with the help of volunteer labor and financial donations including a large contribution by Keizer Veterinary Clinic.  After only a few years the dog park’s glory has faded.  There is no source of running water for the dogs.  The grass, what there is of it, is not tended.  The odor of dog urine is strong due to the lack of consistent irrigation.  Some people have stopped going to the park and instead walk their dogs through Keizer Rapids Park. Financial donors to the dog park are understandably dismayed by the condition of the park.  Some are wondering what has happened to the money that was given specifically for amenties at the dog park. We can not continue to build things in Keizer and worry about its operation later.  There needs to be an operational plan.  If the city doesn’t have the budget to maintain the park, then it, the mayor and the city council, should rally the volunteers to...

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A little Mozart?

The Keizer Rotary Amphitheatre at Keizer Rapids Park is fulfilling its vision of bringing concerts and other events to its stage. So far the music has been rock and roll—both oldies and contemporary.  After this season’s schedule, which is already set, the city and schedulers of the amphitheatre should strive to mix up the shows. Children’s theatre, Shakespeare in the park and classical music have often been mentioned as possible shows.  Rock and roll shows have brought the people to the park.  There are other entertainment seekers whose needs are not being met. Next summer we would like to see a string quartet or a symphony present a show that people can enjoy while dining out of a picnic basket.  The amphitheatre is an asset that should expand its offerings so everyone feels welcome to come, sit and...

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Construction company needs help for Extreme Makeover

“Extreme Makeover: Home Edition” is coming to the Mid-Willamette Valley. Full details had not yet been released as of press time, but a builder has been selected. Rich Duncan Construction will lead the effort and needs volunteers to help complete the task. Needed are everyone from concrete finishers to electricians and painters. To volunteer or learn more, visit www.richduncanconstruction.com. Hosted by Ty Pennington, “Extreme Makeover: Home Edition” has aired on ABC since...

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Is your chili the best? Find out on Saturday

By LYNDON ZAITZ Of the Keizertimes Florence Carter’s suggestion has grown from a little wine tasting into a full-blown chili cook-off at her son John’s restaurant, Tuff Ranch BBQ, at McNary Golf Club. The first Spicy Pepper Chili Cook-off and Wine and Beer Festival will take over the patio at Tuff Ranch from 2 p.m. to 6 p.m. on Saturday, July 31. The public is invited to bring their best chili or salsa to the cook-off. There will be no cooking at the event; contestants will cook prepare their chili at home and bring their entries to Tuff Ranch BBQ. Entrants should plan on bringing “a few gallons of chili to sample,” said Carter. Those entering a salsa should also bring enough for 150 people to sample. Admission and sampling of the chili and salsa entries is free. Cost to enter the cook-off is $5 for each entry with an unlimited number of entries per person. Along with the chili and salsa contest more than 10 area wineries and four breweries will display their products.  A 5-ounce beer or a 3-ounce wine will each cost $4. Each winery will have bottles of several varietals for sale. Food Services of America (FSA) and Sysco have donated ribs, chicken, and pork for the event.  Food will be sold throughout the day aside from the cook-off entries. The evening will be capped...

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Tell us how

Every politician has their ‘applause line,’ the part of a speech that gets a fevered reaction from their intended audiences. These days most politicians seeking votes and support talk about creating or attracting jobs—“We must create living wage jobs” or  something akin to “Our future depends on attracting jobs.” What’s often missing from this is a lack of specifics.  We want to know how these polticians would create or attract jobs in Oregon in general and in Marion County and Keizer in particular. Coming out for more jobs in a recession is like coming out strongly for motherhood, baseball and apple pie. It’s an easy stand to take but the devil is in the details. Every county and city wants new jobs.  Oregon’s unemployment rate stands stubbornly above 10 percent.  The public calls for cutting government at every level, but cutting government means cutting jobs.  Those public employees let go will end up chasing the few jobs that come open or in line at the unemployment office. Government can not force business to create jobs. Government (which means us, the citizens) can create the environment for business to be confident enough to plan on adding jobs. Those in the public eye do a disservice when they say things like “when the economy rebounds” or “when the recession is over.”  We all need to realize that we are currently in...

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