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Salmonberry Trail meeting set for February 1 in Salem - 01/18/19

SALEM, Ore. - The Salmonberry Trail Intergovernmental Agency (STIA) will meet to discuss the proposed Salmonberry Trail corridor 10 a.m. – 2 p.m. Feb. 1 in the Tillamook conference room at the Oregon Department of Forestry, 2600 State St., Salem. The meeting is open to the public.

The meeting will open with a 2.5 hour work session for the board to begin the development of a long range strategic plan. Following the work session at 12:30 p.m. the business meeting will begin. Items to be discussed include an update about the potential development of a new non-profit dedicated to the development of the Salmonberry Trail.

The proposed Salmonberry Trail is an 84-mile corridor that follows the Port of Tillamook Bay Railway and terminates in Banks. The proposed route connects eight cities and two counties, passing by the Oregon coastline, fisheries, farmland and the Oregon Coast Range.

STIA was established to promote and facilitate coordinated direction and guidance in the planning, development and maintenance of the multi-use trail.

For more information contact Dennis Wiley, Salmonberry Trail project manager, at 503-986-0723 or dennis.wiley@oregon.gov. Individuals that need special accommodations to attend the meeting should contact Dennis Wiley at least three days in advance.

Grants available for Oregon museum projects - 01/17/19

The Oregon Heritage Commission is offering grants to qualified museums for collections, heritage tourism, and education and interpretation projects. Awards typically range between $2,000 and $10,000.


Museums may apply for a variety of projects. Collections projects may include cataloging, archival storage, disaster preparedness, and conservation. Heritage tourism projects may include museum marketing and promotions, enhancing visitor experience, and training for museum staff. Education and interpretation projects may include exhibits, online education, school classes, workshops, and camps. Museums may also partner with other organizations for projects that might be outside of the museum, but still meet the museum’s mission.


“This program serves museums of all sizes. We hope to see a variety of applications,” said Oregon Heritage Commission coordinator Beth Dehn. Past projects include exhibits at the Deschutes County Historical Museum, Umatilla Historical Society, and High Desert Museum; collections projects by Clackamas County Historical Society, Mt. Hood Cultural Center, Oregon Jewish Museum and Center for Holocaust Education, Oregon Nikkei Legacy Center, Willamette Heritage Center; and a building project by Fort Rock Valley Historical Society.  


The online grant application is simple to use and includes plenty of support.  Free grant workshops on project planning, grant writing, and using the online grant application will be available. A workshop will be held in Salem on March 19 and a webinar workshop will be available on March 15. Recorded trainings and tips are also online.


The Heritage Commission is comprised of nine people representing Oregon’s heritage and geographical diversity who have been appointed by the Governor. There are also nine advisory representatives from state agencies and statewide organizations. The commission’s mission is to secure, sustain, and enhance Oregon's heritage by ensuring coordination of heritage initiatives by public and private organizations; advocacy on its behalf; education of the public about its extent and value; and promotion and celebration of its diversity.


To learn more about museum grants, visit www.oregonheritage.org or contact Kuri Gill at i.Gill@oregon.gov">Kuri.Gill@oregon.gov or 503-986-0685.

Local Government Grant Program now accepting applications for parks and recreation projects - 01/09/19

The Local Government Grant Program (LGGP) is now accepting applications for the 2019 grant cycle. LGGP helps local government agencies fund outdoor park and recreation areas and facilities, and acquire property for park purposes. Approximately $5.4 million in reimbursement funds are available for the 2019 cycle.

Eligible applicants: cities, counties, metropolitan service districts, park and recreation districts, and port districts.

Two workshops will be held in February to help new and returning applicants navigate the application process and learn about the program:

  • In-person workshop: 10 a.m. – noon, Feb. 7 in Salem
  • Webinar workshop: 10 a.m. – noon, Feb. 14 online

Information at both workshops will be the same. Registration is required; to register contact Mark Cowan, Grant Program Coordinator, at k.cowan@oregon.gov">mark.cowan@oregon.gov.

Program grants are split into large, small and planning categories. Application deadlines for each kind of grant:

  • Large grants deadline: April 1
  • Small grants deadline: May 1
  • Planning grants deadline: May 15

Access to the LGGP application is online at oprdgrants.org. New applicants must first request an account via the website before they’re granted application access.

Additional information about LGGP, including the grant manual, application instructions, pre-application worksheet, and program schedule is also on oprdgrants.org.

LGGP is administered by Oregon Parks and Recreation Department (OPRD). The program has awarded more than $60 million in grant reimbursement funds since 1999.

Statewide Comprehensive Outdoor Recreation Plan draft online for public review - 01/07/19

The public is invited to comment on the state’s plan for outdoor recreation drafted by the Oregon Parks and Recreation Department (OPRD). Outdoor Recreation in Oregon: Responding to Demographical and Societal Change is posted for public review and comment at  https://www.oregon.gov/oprd/PLANS/Pages/201923SCORP.aspx. Comments will be accepted through Feb. 7, 2019.

The plan closely examines the effects of important demographic and societal changes facing outdoor recreation providers in the state, including:

  • An aging population
  • An increasingly diverse population
  • Lack of youth engagement in outdoor recreation
  • An underserved low-income population
  • Increasing levels of physical inactivity within the population.

OPRD planners developed the report using a series of carefully designed statewide research studies including a statistically reliable survey of Oregon residents. Staff gathered feedback from 3,550 randomly selected residents.

States are required to develop a Statewide Comprehensive Outdoor Recreation Plan to be eligible to receive matching grants from the federal Land and Water Conservation Fund (LWCF) grant program. The five-year plan guides the use of those funds and other OPRD-administered grant programs including the Local Government Grant Program.  It also provides recommendations to all levels of recreation providers on how they can better serve Oregonians.

OPRD will accept comments through Feb. 7, 2019. Responses can be made via:

The recreation plan is also available in a CD format by contacting Terry Bergerson at 503-986-0747 or ry.bergerson@oregon.gov">terry.bergerson@oregon.gov.


Participation in outdoor recreation activities cuts healthcare costs by millions, new report shows - 01/07/19

Oregonian’s participation in outdoor recreation activities saves the state $1.4 billion annually in healthcare costs, according to a report released today by the Oregon Parks and Recreation Department (OPRD).

The report, Health Benefits for Oregonians from their Outdoor Recreation Participation in Oregon, calculates how much energy people expend when engaging in outdoor recreation, and the corresponding reduction in costs related to chronic illnesses such as heart disease, stroke, depression, dementia, diabetes and several cancers.

“The report demonstrates that parks and recreation providers play a role in increasing the public health and wellbeing of Oregonians,” said OPRD recreation planner Terry Bergerson.

The report estimates that Oregonians who participated in outdoor recreation in 2017 expended energy equivalent to 144 million pounds of body fat, which would fill nearly 30 Olympic-sized swimming pools.

OPRD commissioned Randall Rosenberger, an applied economist with the College of Forestry at Oregon State University, to prepare the report at a cost of $50,000 as a component of the Statewide Comprehensive Outdoor Recreation Plan. Rosenberger used outdoor recreation participation data from a 2017 statewide survey conducted by OPRD. He and his research team developed a tool to quantify the “Cost of Illness” savings when people engage in 30 outdoor activities, including walking, hiking, skiing, paddling and outdoor sports like tennis and soccer.

“The findings are clear,” said OPRD Director Lisa Sumption. “Communities with parks have more opportunities to become healthier communities. Every time we invest in parks, we’re investing in the wellbeing of Oregonians.”

The three most popular activities were also the three that provided the largest healthcare savings:

  • Walking along local streets and sidewalks ($630 million)
  • Jogging and running along streets and sidewalks ($146 million)
  • Walking on local trails and paths ($126 million)

“The results are consistent across the state: when outdoor recreation is easily accessible, healthcare costs go down,” Rosenberger said. “How we design communities and transportation systems contributes to the health of Oregonians.”

The report provides information by recreation activity at both the statewide and county levels. As you would expect based on their large populations, Multnomah County provided the largest Cost of Illness Savings at $329 million, followed by Washington County ($234 million), and Marion County ($127 million).

The total Cost of Illness Savings associated with outdoor recreation is about 17 percent of total healthcare expenditures on treating chronic illnesses in the state, the study finds.  

Other key findings include:

  • Average weekly minutes of outdoor recreation participation decline with age, from 509 minutes for 18 – 34-year-olds to 92 minutes for those 85 and older. 
  • Those with active jobs spend slightly more time engaged in non-work outdoor recreation (539 minutes) compared to those with mostly sedentary jobs (429 minutes).
  • No significant differences were observed in average weekly outdoor recreation participation minutes across income, education, sex or whether you live in an urban, suburban or rural area

The full report is available here, <https://www.oregon.gov/oprd/PLANS/docs/scorp/2019-2023SCORP/2018HealthBenefitsEstimatesforOregonians.pdf>.


Editors: Recreation photos can be downloaded here.

Ecola State Park closed Jan. 10-12 for hazard tree removal - 01/07/19

SEASIDE, Ore. — Ecola State Park will be closed briefly while crews remove hazard trees.  The park will be closed from dawn Jan. 10 – noon Jan. 12.

The project is set to continue through early February. No other closures are planned at this time.

Oregon Parks and Recreation Department (OPRD) hired Astoria-based David Kurns Tree Service at a cost of about $8,000 for a unit-wide tree-removal project that affects several north coast parks, including Arcadia Beach State Recreation Site, Oswald West State Park and Saddle Mountain State Natural Area. If additional closures are necessary, they will be posted on the parks’ webpages at oregonstateparks.org.

The trees identified for removal pose a safety risk to visitors and property.


Forest health project begins at Fort Stevens State Park - 01/04/19

WARRENTON, Ore — A forest health and fire safety project at Fort Stevens State Park begins Jan. 7 and continues through March. No closures are expected other than Burma Road, a remote emergency access road.

Crews will remove sick and dying trees in the mostly undeveloped south section of the park along Burma Road. The area contains some primitive hiking and biking trails.

“Our goal is to help the native trees, such as hemlock and spruce, grow into a healthy, mature forest,” said park manager Justin Parker.

He said the project will also help protect the park from wildfire by creating a gap in vegetation that would help slow or stop a fire.

Oregon Parks and Recreation Department (OPRD)  hired Warrenton-based Custom Excavating to remove the sick trees, at a cost of $7,500.

Oregon Recreational Trails Advisory Council meets January 18 in Bandon - 01/04/19

BANDON, Ore. – The Oregon Recreational Trails Advisory Council (ORTAC) will meet 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. at the Bandon Conference and Community Center, 1200 11th St. SW, Bandon. The meeting is open to the public.

The agenda includes presentations from local trail advocates and land managers about trail projects and initiatives, including updates on: Oregon State Parks’ South Coast trail projects; Oregon Coast Bike Route; Coquille Water Trail; Coos County’s Whiskey Run Trail System; Lower Rogue River Trail; Oregon Mountain Biking Coalition; the Oregon Parks and Recreation (OPRD) Statewide Comprehensive Outdoor Recreation Plan, and more.

View the agenda online: https://www.oregon.gov/oprd/Trail_Programs_Services/Documents/ORTACMeetingAgenda%20Jan182018.pdf

ORTAC was established by the Legislature in 1971 to advise OPRD and its partners in the development and promotion of high quality non-motorized trail systems throughout Oregon.

The council is made up of seven volunteer members representing the five congressional districts and two coastal representatives. Members are appointed by the Oregon State Parks and Recreation Commission. The council holds quarterly meetings in different locations across the state.

For more information about ORTAC, visit https://www.oregon.gov/OPRD/Trail_Programs_Services/Pages/Advisory-Committees.aspx

The meeting location is ADA accessible. Individuals that need special accommodations to attend should contact Holly Emery, Administrative Support Specialist, at 503-986-0803 or Y@oregon.gov">Holly.EMERY@oregon.gov, at least three days in advance.

Heritage Commission to meet January 13-14 in Springfield - 12/31/18

The Oregon Heritage Commission will meet in Springfield January 13-14. 

On January 13 Commissioners will gather at 1:00 p.m. to tour heritage sites in the Willamalane Park and Recreation District including Doris Ranch, Grey House, and the Women Veterans Memorial.

On January 14 a public business meeting will begin at 9 a.m. at the Springfield Public Library located at 225 5th St, Suite 301, Springfield OR 97477. The agenda includes discussion on Oregon Heritage Traditions, reports on Commission programs, action on the Commission’s bylaws, and long term planning.

The Heritage Commission is comprised of nine people representing Oregon's heritage and geographical diversity who have been appointed by the Governor. There are nine advisory representatives from state agencies and statewide organizations. The mission of the Oregon Heritage Commission is to secure, sustain, and enhance Oregon's heritage by ensuring coordination of heritage initiatives by public and private organizations; advocacy on its behalf; education of the public about its extent and value; and promotion and celebration of its diversity.

Commission meetings are open to the public and their agendas include opportunities for public comment. The meeting site is accessible to people with disabilities. Special accommodations for the meeting – including translation services – may be made by calling (503) 986?0690 at least 72 hours prior to the start of the meeting.

For more information and accessibility needs, visit www.oregonheritage.org or contact Oregon Heritage Commission Coordinator Beth Dehn at 503-986-0696 or eth.Dehn@oregon.gov">Beth.Dehn@oregon.gov.