McKenzie River Reflections - Make the McKenzie Connection!



September 14, 2019

Wayfarer boat







By Dan Purkey

The McKenzie River brings exceptional individuals together to create and develop beautiful and serene utopias! Such a place is the Wayfarer Resort, founded by Harry Sandstrom in the late ‘50’s, sold to Pat and Terry Patton and ultimately bought by Andy and Liz McWilliams in 2008.

Andy grew up in the Fresno, California area and enrolled at the University of Oregon in 1977. While attending college, Andy lived and worked at “The Berry Patch” and caught the McKenzie River “fever.” In 1982, he started a successful financial consulting brokerage career, where he met his future wife Liz (a Sheldon HS graduate). While continuing their financial career, they began to further develop the current Wayfarer Resort.

Situated on the opposite side of Hwy. 126 in Vida (across the well-photographed Goodpasture wooden-covered bridge), the Resort is surrounded by the tumbling Marten Creek and the emerald McKenzie River; with 13 rustic cabins, a multiplicity of offered activities and a children’s fishing pond! Perfect for reunions, retreats, seminars and quiet getaways, one of the regular guests (Sylvia Lemmond) beautifully wrote this about the Wayfarer: “… Oh thank you Lord for finding us this place so filled with peace. A place where all your powers of love have gently been released….”

The Wayfarer Resort, under the leadership of Andy and Liz, has been an integral center for the McKenzie Masters’ golf and fishing annual event. Through this organization, money has been raised for boat ramp improvements, life jackets, restoration projects, the river guide programs and many other endeavors.

Open year ‘round, I encourage you to visit their website (, email them ([email protected]) or call: 541-896-3613 or 1 (800) 627-3613.


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