Tuesday, September 15, 2015

That Southern Oregon Life

The Britt Music and Arts Festival in Jacksonville, Oregon 

It is a summer long event that invite top performers to a beautiful Southern Oregon stage. Beginning in 1963, the ongoing opportunity for locals to experience diverse artists and musicians amongst a breathtaking landscape.

Lauren and I attended the Under the Sun Tour featuring: Sugar Ray, Uncle Cracker, Eve 6 and Better than Ezra.  It was a lot of fun!
More recently I attend a Kacey McGraves concert.  She is an up and coming country singer from Texas.  I went with a new friend Erika whom I met through a Meetup - an App designed to meet people.

Mountain Summits

Hiking to the summit of multiple mountains was not something I had expected to undertake this summer.  Alas, the opportunity and enthusiasm for reaching the top peaks in the area inspired me to explore and accomplish.

I hike Mount McLoughlin solo. The 11miles in and out trail was a great experience. I did lose the trail on the way down like many people do.  With my compass and new friend we figured out our way back.
Moutn Eddy was accomplished with my parents. Through patience and perserveance we all made it to the top on a 9 mile in and out excursion.

The Elizabethan Theater
Oregon Shakespeare Festival, Asland, Oregon.
A world renown festival provides excellent access to fantastic artists, actors, musicians, and culture.  For six nights a week the Green Show occurs for free on the Bricks.  They bring in people from all over to perform prior to plays.  It is a chance to see a wide variety of performances including dance groups and musicians of all genres.  I partook often.
Casey Hurt and the Handsome Devils
The plays themselves are superb.  For a student discount at $15 I was able to see several plays including Shakespeare, a musical, an international premiere, and modern time stories.

Outdoor Recreation in SW Oregon
The opportunities to explore in the surrounding hills of the Rogue Valley are endless. Most weekends I would do a day trip to an interesting area.  Some highlights included: 
Mount Eddy,
Mount McLoughlin,
Applegate Valley,
Crater Lake,
Rogue River Trail
There is way more that I didn't get to because the area is so full of awesome recreation! 

Friday, September 4, 2015

Mentor Profile: Don Boucher

Don Boucher calls his position title Stewardship Coordinator on the Siskiyou Mountains Ranger District.  He undertakes the task of being the contact person in several collaborative efforts in the Forest Service.  His forestry thirty-year career has almost exclusively been with the US Forest Service in Southern Oregon.

He began as a smoke jumper in the extreme terrains of Oregon and California.  Jumping out of airplanes gave him the thrill that comes with fighting fire. Onwards to forest engineering, timber programs, and project management through the ranks of the forest service, Don has seen it all.  It wasn’t until the 2000s where collaborative forest management became ever clear in his eye that the USFS needed to jump aboard.

He naturally became involved in the Ashland Forest Resiliency Project as an active member in the community and forestry.  The project gained footing in 2005 when interests groups in the area combined forces to build a strong foundation for active management in the Ashland watershed.  His involvement was integral to success with his experience with the bureaucratic loops in the system of the USFS.  His passion to see boots on the ground and community support with scientific support was significant in moving towards active management. 

Don’s involvement in Collaborative Forestry efforts extends past Ashland. His involvement continues to the Applegate Collaborative as a lead in facilitating discussion with USFS contributions.  He participates in the Southern Oregon Forest Restoration Collaborative, a regional planning team.  His extensive experience in collaborative work is astonishing and very valuable to learn from.