How Small Things may help Overcome Fear

15 03 2017

snowshoeBird2

Sometimes what seems a simple activity to some, can be a challenge to others.  You may know, if you put sunflower seeds in your hand and hold very, very still, the birds will come when near alpine environments.  Habituating wildlife to humans is frowned upon, but in this instance, it was a challenge for overcoming fear.

Cary is a gentleman working to overcome fear and nervous about life after spending significant time in prison.  After a conversation about overcoming fears in daily life, he decided to try having a bird land on his hand even though he was really scared to do so.

Cary succeeded in his goal and has not stopped talking about it since.  This is a simple, but good reminder how healing nature can be, especially when you transfer the learning that happens outside into your daily regime.

Sponsor Inc. Mentor program helps match community volunteers with men and women just released from prison. The role of mentors is to guide and support these individuals into a successful reentry into our community, and they only ask for about 4-6 hours of your time each month.

For More info, contact:

Jen Jackson at Sponsors 541-505-5663

For an additional article about Sponsors from Outside Magazine see:

https://eugeneoutdoorprogram.wordpress.com/2016/12/05/is-nature-the-key-to-rehabilitating-prisoners/

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A History of City of Eugene Recreation

1 02 2017

From the book, A History of City of Eugene Recreation by Bruce Steinmetz.

A short history of the River House.

riverhouse-history-page0001-1riverhouse-history-page0002riverhouse-history-page0003

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Ice Armageddon of 2016

19 12 2016

Day 5 of the latest ice event and possibly the hardest hitting one in 50 years.  6,000 are estimated to still be without power- down from the original 20,000 from Wednesday evening.  Temps are starting to rise and actual liquid rain is falling, but the cleanup could take months.  In times like this it’s great to live in a community where people come together and help where needed.  Special thanks go out to all the Utility, City, County, and Emergency workers putting in extra effort to help.  Also thanks to the private tree companies and individual citizens that have helped so many along the way.

The Red Cross Shelter at Spencer Butte Middle School is currently still open and is available for a warm place to stay, showers, and food.  Also, other needs can be obtained (firewood, food, water, info) through the City of Eugene Shelter Information line at 541-682-5900.  The shelter will remain open until Tuesday at noon, or as long as there is a need.

The River House is ,so far lucky, escaping with little damage to the garden fence.

ice-damage2

ice-damage

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Dutch Oven Turkey

22 11 2016

turkey

I love doing a turkey in the Dutch oven. So many people end up with dry, tasteless bird when they cook a turkey. That does not happen with this recipe. When I do a turkey, it is all about taste, not looks. In fact, I carve the bird and serve it on platters, so no one even sees the finished product in the oven.

One tip is to cook your bird upside down so the breast is cooked in juices the entire time. That’s what I’ve done here. If you don’t have a Dutch oven big enough (I use a 17” extra deep Maca oven that will hold a 30 lb. bird), you can do this in a roaster oven and use a cooking back to keep the moisture in. If you do use the Dutch oven, the moisture is kept in without using a cooking bag.

Here is a list of the things you will need:

  • Turkey – I like a 22 lb fresh Tom
  • 1 cube of butter
  • Salt and pepper
  • 2 cups of chicken broth
  • 3 sprigs of fresh sage
  • 3 sprigs of fresh rosemary
  • 3 sprigs of fresh thyme
  • 3 bay leaves
  • 2 onions, quartered
  • 4 heads of garlic (around 20-25 peeled cloves)
  • 2 cups of water
  • Large food syringe injector

Directions:

turkey11

Clean out the turkey and remove the neck, gizzard, etc. that come with the bird. Stuff the main cavity of the turkey with the onions and garlic cloves.

turkey2

Using ½ the stick of butter, cover the outside of the turkey. Salt and pepper the outside as well.

turkey3

Take the remaining half stick of butter and add it to the chicken stock in a pan and melt the butter into the stock. Fill the large syringe (I use an epidural syringe I got from a nurse that works in labor and delivery, when that gave up the ghost, I bought a food injector syringe) with the chicken broth/butter fluid and inject the broth into all meaty parts of the bird. The skin will plump up everywhere you inject the turkey.

turkey4

Add the water to the bottom of the pan, place the turkey in upside down (breast down) and cover with the fresh herbs. Don’t worry is some of the herbs fall into the water at the bottom of the pan, we use the flavored juices at the end.

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Cover the oven with the lid and cook at around 350° for 3 hours using even heat (slightly more coals on top than bottom). I tend to make the oven a little hotter in the first hour of cooking and go with a lower heat for the remainder of the time. Because my oven is so deep, it takes around 25% more coals than the usual formula to get the heat I want.

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The key is to use a meat thermometer to check your meat temperature. When the breast meat is at 170°, your turkey is done! Make sure you do not overcook it. When the bird is done pull it out of the oven (probably in pieces as the meat falls off the bone!) carve the meat and place it on serving platters that have a bit of an edge to them. Now, using a ladle, pour some of the juices from the pan over all the meat before serving. This will be one juicy turkey!

Checkout more dutch oven recipes and creations at DutchOvenTopia

Author: dotadmin

Source: http://dutchoventopia.com/dutch-oven-turkey-recipe/

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House on the River

23 05 2016

 Eugene’s River House celebrates 50 years

Eugene's River House

Eugene’s River House

Ah, Eugene, “a great city for the arts and outdoors,” especially if you have the right gear, training and financial means to actually get down and dirty in the area’s natural wonders.

One factor for enjoying the outdoors is having access in the first place. The Eugene Rec Outdoor Program provides just that for Eugeneans, and the organization’s 50th anniversary is right around the corner.

Originally established by clean-water advocate Mel Jackson and the city of Eugene in the late 1960s, the outdoor program later was expanded by the Eugene Parks and Rec department. The group eventually acquired the nickname River House, seeing as the building is smack dab on the river. Canoeing, rock-climbing, white-water rafting and other activities have been added to the program’s activity list over time, and accessibility for the courses is a consistent factor for the River House team.

“We have a goal of making our program inclusive and accessible to anyone wanting to participate,” says program supervisor Roger Bailey, who’s been with River House for nearly 30 years. Bailey says he’s seen the positive community influence that accessible outdoor programs offer. “That is our mission,” Bailey says, “to help people grow and to help make this community a better place to live.”

For Bailey, this means approaching courses with “cultural respect, accountability, honesty and integrity.” He says more energy is going towards focusing on financial accessibility, and a youth sailing course provided by the outdoor program was recently able to share scholarships for low-income children.

“Every walk of life comes here to take our programs,” Bailey explains. River House programs provide people with, as he puts it, skills that need to be learned outside of school or work. Whether you’re feeling like honing your outdoorsy side in town or want to put some spur-of-the-moment REI purchase to the test out in the forest, the program has activities for all levels, and few exceed a $40 price tag — not to mention the handful of courses that are free to the public.

The River House’s 50th-anniversary celebration will be 4 to 7 pm Saturday, July 23, at 301 N. Adams Street, with food, circus arts, cake, kayaks and paddle boards provided at the event; more info at eugene-or.gov.

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Lovely Penny Arcade

11 04 2016

Just as it seemed music videos were dead, along comes OK Go and their brilliance in film making.  This new video from Jane Bordeaux for the song Ma’agalim is nothing like the OK Go films, but still has a certain Rube Goldberg quality to it.  It is beautifully created and matched well with the music.  I have no clue what this song is about but Trust it’s Lovely.

What does this have to do with an outdoor blog?  Nothing, and I hope it makes you smile.

Ma’agalim – Jane Bordeaux from Uri Lotan on Vimeo.

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Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. on the Mountain Top

19 01 2016

MLK

Yesterday a compilation of Martin Luther King speeches and music that was influences by the man and his mission caught my attention on Spotify.  It included his final and famous speech, “I’ve been to the Mountaintop”.  We’ve all heard bits of this speech multiple times, but yesterday I sat down and really listened to the words and passion of this remarkable man.  King speaks of the plight of the sanitation workers on strike in Memphis, the need to stand behind and help your neighbor, and the possible end of his life- pushing people to continue the dangerous work of shedding light on wrongs.

I was born in a town in Alabama that was a focal point of the Civil Rights struggle where a Freedom Riders bus was burned in 1961.  I am too young to have experienced the 60’s, but still feel the shame of how the state and many citizens treated their fellow man.

Amazingly this was only 55 short years ago, so let us not forget about the struggles, and beatings, and deaths so many experienced in a human struggle to be heard and respected as a human.

Please take 43 minutes to listen to the entire speech from 1968.  It is worth your time.      Mountain Top Speech

 

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