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Arbor Month

News Briefs

Governor Tina Kotek has proclaimed April 2024 Oregon Arbor Month. The proclamation states that “Trees play an integral role in fostering healthy communities,” adding that urban development and tree preservation demand a careful balance. It also recognizes the loss of trees in Oregon due to wildfire, extreme heat and drought, development pressures, and new pests, such as the emerald ash borer.

Arbor Month grew out of Arbor Day, a one-day tree-planting campaign in Nebraska in 1872. The event spread nationwide and expanded in many states to a week-long celebration of all things tree-related.


VMCC names Kimberly Reeves Parker “Artist in Residence” and “Artist Liaison”

Vida McKenzie Community Center is thrilled to announce the expansion of its arts and culture programming under the stewardship of Canadian-born pianist and composer Kimberly Reeves Parker. The Center intends to highlight local and regional musical talent at VMCC every two months during the 2024 season. You can meet Kimberly, learn about upcoming concerts, and hear VMCC’s baby grand piano for the first time on April 6th from 2 - 4 p.m. during the Center’s Grand Opening.

Kimberly discovered her musical passion at age four. Influenced by her musical family, she began classical studies at age five and later discovered jazz theory. By her 20s, Kimberly performed up and down the West Coast. After settling in the Bay area in 1991, Kimberly performed, taught piano, and cut several original recording projects.

Since relocating to the McKenzie River Valley with her husband in 2017, Kimberly has been focused on teaching and producing her next recording project, “Crimson Crow.”

Access Closed

Blue River, Ore -- Travelers visiting the McKenzie River National Recreation Area may need to plan alternate travel routes to the area’s trails and campgrounds.

The U.S. Army Corps of Engineers (USACE) will close both lanes of Road NF-1993 across Cougar Dam on March 18 from 7:00 a.m. to 5:00 p.m. for construction work on the dam’s spillway gate.

Additional road closure dates this summer are currently unknown. USACE will notify the public when the closure dates have been determined.

Visitors may need to plan alternate routes to access the trailheads at Lower Echo/East Fork, Upper East Fork, Upper Lowder Mountain, and Pat Saddle.

More information is on the McKenzie River Ranger District’s web page at


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