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TWST in Maupin
Maupin is the last stop on our Central Columbia Gorge TWST of Wasco and Sherman Counties. About an hour drive south of The Dalles, located along both sides of the Deschutes River on Highway 197, this community of 490 residents strong has reinvented itself over the last few years.
TWST in Harney County – Burns
While the county may not have a large number of residents compared to urban areas, residents must cover vast distances and rely on a core group of dedicated leaders to keep services and nonprofits running. But it’s worth the effort. When asked to share some of the things they loved about living in Harney County, one participant wrote:
“The glitter of frozen air on frozen sunny January afternoons, and the smell of air on a blistering August sage landscape. We live in Paradise!”
TWST in Central Coast – Florence & Newport
Over 20 folks came representing nonprofits in Florence, Bandon, Mapleton, Westlake, and Charleston. There were three broad themes in our discussion – hardships brought about by the recession, protecting the environment, and programs for youth and families.
TWST in Central Coast – Reedsport
Reedsport pulled out all the stops to welcome me to this quaint coastal community. We gathered 47-strong in the Reedsport Public Library. Participants came mostly from Reedsport, but also from the nearby communities of Gardiner, Winchester, and Coos Bay.
TWST in Central & Eastern Oregon – Baker City
The concerns I learned about in eastern Oregon echoed those of the communities in central Oregon. The geographical remoteness and aging population with few large employers challenge those who live here. There is also the lack of family wage jobs
TWST in Central & Eastern Oregon – Canyon City
The rains started again, and thunder and lightning soon followed. The latter brings the threat of wildfire in these parts, so we hope for no land strikes. We met at the Community Hall in Canyon City
TWST in Central & Eastern Oregon – Spray
On Day Three of our TWST, we start in Spray. It's a community of about 160 residents within city limits, and 250 folks including the surrounding areas. We met in “The Rock” building that is operated by the local church and serves as Spray’s community center.
TWST in Central & Eastern Oregon – Condon
I headed northward into Gilliam County to visit with the folks in Condon. This meeting was held at the North Central Education Service District office, which also houses other nonprofit agencies that serve this community of 720 residents.
TWST in Central & Eastern Oregon – Fossil
I had dinner last night at the Timber Family Restaurant and had a conversation with the proprietor, June Rollins, about what it is like to live in Fossil. She told me that this community of around 430 is filled with great folks, but it has its challenges.
TWST in Central & Eastern Oregon – Mitchell
I manage to lose the rain on the road to Mitchell, a small community of 173. Linda Shelk met me at the Mitchell School, which serves Pre-K to grade 12 students. I was surprised to learn that they have 66 students