Sunday, June 9, 2013


June 6 - 16, 2013

Everyone thinks I lived my entire youth on the coast.   Not true.  I'm an Eastern Oregonian.  My dad's father homesteaded after the Civil War near Prairie City.  My mom and her parents came here from Kentucky in the 1920's to work for the Forest Service at the Dixie Mountain Ranger Station.  I lived here until the '70's and enjoy returning to Eastern Oregon to visit relatives and enjoy reminiscing about my youth.

Baker, which what it was called when I lived here, is so unique.  The first thing you see as you drop into the Baker Valley, is snow on the Elkhorn Mountains and green grass in the fields.  Everything looks so clean...and the sky is really blue.  But the real beauty is the buildings and homes built in the early 1900's that are still in pristine condition.  I can spend hours driving around town looking at all the houses and learning the history of the city.
Baker Valley near North Powder
Louie wasn't impressed with the scenery. 

FIRST FRIDAY IN BAKER CITY.   Ray and I hit downtown Baker on First Friday.  It was fun to see all the Art Galleries that have opened.  Our first stop was the Carnegie Art Center and latest exhibit by JanyRae Seda of Boise Idaho.  It was fun to see work depicting Eastern Oregon instead of seascapes and Mt Hood.  I think I am going to paint a steer face next.

The art center is located in the old public library.  Truly, I was more excited to revisit the library than see the exhibit.  I remember going there weekly with my dad.  He would go upstairs to the adult section and I would go downstairs to check out books by my favorite authors.  I was surprised how small the space was inside the library.  You would think it would look larger without all the shelves, tables and check out counter.  It still warmed my heart to stand and remember looking at titles of books deciding which one to read next.

 Then we did a quick walk to downtown Baker.  The best thing about main street is it is soooo wide.  Everyone comments on it when they visit during the summer.  But it makes total sense in the winter and there is an accumulation of snow.  All the excess snow goes in the middle of the street.  So you can step off the sidewalk and not be in a drift of snow.

Ray stopped me from running to the exact center of the street so you will need some imagination to understand how wide it is.

Main street is full of interesting architecture.  Every time we come here I discover something new.  Baker has done a fantastic job of restoring buildings. 

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