Saturday March 29

Posted on March 26th in Community Calendar

The Diamond Community Theatre will present a play open to the public at 7 p.m. Saturday, March 29, in the Diamond Grade School gym. Relive the 1890s in Bisbee, Ariz. with “Belle of Bisbee.”

A six-hour AARP driver safety class designed for drivers 50 and older is scheduled for Saturday, March 29, from 9 a.m. to 4 p.m. at the Harney County Health Dept., 420 N. Fairview in Burns. Register by calling Phyllis Commeree at 541-573-6405.

2014’s SWAN (Support Women Artists Now) Day will take place at the Harney County Senior and Community Services Center at 17 S. Alder on Saturday, March 29, from 10:30 a.m. to 4 p.m.


Sunday March 30

Posted on March 26th in Community Calendar

Non-denominational Bible services are held Sundays at 3 p.m. at Hines City Hall. Ministers are Jane Buell and Cheryl Emborg.

Alcoholics Anonymous meets every Sunday at 7 p.m. at Foursquare Church for 12×12 study.


Monday March 31

Posted on March 26th in Community Calendar

Harney Soil and Water Conservation District (HSWCD) will hold a special meeting, in lieu of their regularly scheduled monthly meeting, on Monday, March 31, from 3:45 p.m. to 5 p.m. at the Eastern Oregon Agricultural Research Center located at 67826-A. Hwy 205 in Burns.

The Burns Lions Club meets every Monday at noon at the Burns Elks Lodge. Those interested in serving the community are welcome.

A Walking Class is held each Monday, Tuesday and Thursday from  10:30 a.m. to 11:30 a.m. indoors at the Harney County Senior and Community Services Center.

Burns Fire Dept. meets each Monday at the Burns Fire Hall at 7 p.m.

The Hines Volunteer Fire Department meets at the Hines Fire Hall each Monday at 7 p.m. (except the last Monday of the month). Prospective members may contact Fire Chief Bob Spence at 541-573-7477 or 541-573-2251.


Tuesday April 1

Posted on March 26th in Community Calendar

Oregon Hunter’s Association meets the first Tuesday of each month at the Pine Room at 7 p.m. A drawing for a gift certificate to a local merchant will be held for paid members present at the meeting.

Silvies River Spinners meets the first Tuesday of each month in the Harney County Courthouse basement meeting room at 5:30 p.m.

Harney Hospital Foundation meets the first Tuesday of each month in the Hospital Conference Room at 7 p.m.

Sylvia Rebekah Lodge meets the first and third Tuesday of each month at the I.O.O.F. Hall, 348 N. Broadway, at 6:30 p.m.

An Infant/Toddler Play Group is held each Tuesday at 10:30 a.m. at the Early Childhood Center for children ages birth to three. For more information, call 541-573-6461.

Free income tax preparation and assistance is available for taxpayers age 60+ and low and middle-income taxpayers of any age through the AARP Tax-Aide program. Trained volunteers will be available from 9 a.m. to 3 p.m. each Tuesday and Thursday, until April 15. at the Harney County School District No. 3 administrative office to prepare tax returns or assist with questions. For more information, call Sam Caizza at 541-573-3262.

Harney Basin Writers meets each Tuesday from noon until 4 p.m. in room 302 of the former Lincoln School, corner of A Street and Court Ave. in Burns. Elevator on the south side. Quiet writing time until 2 p.m., then readings begin. Adults of any writing style are welcome to attend.

A Walking Class is held each Monday, Tuesday and Thursday from  10:30 a.m. to 11:30 a.m. indoors at the Harney County Senior and Community Services Center.

Senior Health Insurance Benefits Assistance Program (SHIBA) trained volunteers will be at the Harney County Senior Center each Tuesday from 1 p.m. to 3 p.m. For more information, call the senior center at 541-573-6024.

Tai Chi for Better Balance with Diane Rapaport is held each Tuesday at Harney County Senior and Community Services Center from 9:30 a.m. to 10:30 a.m. — free.

Boy Scouts meet each Tuesday at 7 p.m. at the LDS Church in Hines. All boys age 11 and above are welcome to participate.

Alcoholics Anonymous holds an open meeting each Tuesday at Foursquare Church, 74 S. Alvord in Burns at 7 p.m.


R.E.A.D. program began in 1993 

 by Samantha White
Burns Times-Herald

Claire Larson, registered handler, and Nasika visited Mrs. Revak’s first-grade class to introduce students to Waggin’ Tales, a new program at the Harney County Library that grants children the opportunity to read with registered therapy dogs the first and third Saturdays of each month.

Claire Larson, registered handler, and Nasika visited Mrs. Revak’s first-grade class to introduce students to Waggin’ Tales, a new program at the Harney County Library that grants children the opportunity to read with registered therapy dogs the first and third Saturdays of each month.

A couple of competent canines are now available by appointment at the Harney County Library (located at 80 W. D St. in Burns) the first and third Saturdays of the month.

The local library launched its Waggin’ Tales program Saturday, Jan. 4, to give children the opportunity to read aloud to the attentive, non-judgmental ears of furry friends, Tova and Nasika.

These disciplined dogs are not your run-of-the-mill “Rovers.” They are both therapy dogs who have also been registered through the Reading Education Assistance Dogs ® (R.E.A.D.) program.

According to its brochure, R.E.A.D. was launched in 1999 by Intermountain Therapy Animals (ITA). Founded in 1993, ITA is a Utah-based, nonprofit organization that was created to “enhance quality of life through the human-animal bond.”

The brochure states that animals are ideal reading partners because they help increase relaxation and lower blood pressure; listen attentively; don’t judge, laugh or criticize; allow children to proceed at their own pace; and are less intimidating than peers.

The brochure also states that, “When a R.E.A.D. dog is listening, the environment is transformed, a child’s dread is replaced by eager anticipation, and learning occurs.”

R.E.A.D. uses registered therapy animals that have been trained and tested for health, safety, appropriate skills and temperament. They volunteer with their owner/handlers as a team.

Tova and Nasika are teamed up with Claire Larson, assistant librarian at the Harney County Library, who is their registered handler.

Larson explained that, in addition to developing excellent obedience and behavioral skills, R.E.A.D. dogs need to be highly interactive. For example, they are taught to look at the books and put their paws on the pages. Some dogs are even taught to sneeze as a cue to encourage children to look difficult words up in the dictionary.

“R.E.A.D. wants a higher level of interaction,” Larson said, adding that dogs are taught cues to benefit struggling readers.

The pooches are clicker trained, which is a method of positive-reinforcement training that uses a clicking sound to inform animals when they complete a task correctly.

Larson said her dogs learned to associate the sound with rewards, such as food, a toy or a ride in the car. She added that clicker training changes dogs from “reactive” to “active and engaging,” as they become eager to repeat behaviors in order to obtain incentives. Larson added that, once dogs master simple tasks, several trained behaviors can be chained together to teach increasingly complex skills.

“They have to do four or five things in sequence to earn a click,” Larson explained. Adding, “It’s pretty amazing what they can be taught to do.”

But, much like people, dogs have unique personalities and character flaws that can interfere with the training process.

For example, Tova is shy, and she tends to get overwhelmed in large crowds. On the contrary, Nasika might be a little too outgoing.

Larson described Nasika as a “wild child,” adding that she “gets goofy” and likes to dance and chase her tail. Nasika also needs to learn how to be quiet in the library.

“She has a comment for everything,” Larson said, adding that she likes to “howl and talk.”

But Larson — who has been adopting rescue dogs and horses for several years; volunteered locally as a 4-H dog-club leader; worked at a greyhound track; raced whippets; and run her own dogsled team — will tell you that training animals is a constant, ongoing process.

Larson, who has been working with her dogs on obedience for quite some time, received help from youth at Eastern Oregon Youth Correctional Facility. For example, the youth helped “socialize” Tova, teaching her how to interact with young people. They also taught her to wave and shake hands. River, another one of Larson’s dogs, has also been moonlighting at the facility. And, because the youth and dogs have enjoyed the experience, Larson decided to continue and expand the facility’s pooch program.

At the library, Waggin’ Tales will continue semimonthly until after April, and restart in October. There is still time to schedule an appointment with a proficient pup.

For more information about Waggin’ Tales, or to book a 15 to 20-minute reading session with Nasika or Tova, contact the library at 541-573-6670.


The Bureau of Land Management, Burns District Office, has prepared and released for public input, the Steens Mountain Comprehensive Recreation Plan (CRP): an Environmental Assessment (EA) for expected recreational activities and associated facilities that may be desired in the Steens Mountain area, including, but not limited to: campgrounds, trails, interpretive sites, access points, viewing areas and dispersed recreation opportunities. Among other things, if it is determined to be in the best public interest, the Steens Mountain CRP final decision may add to the non-motorized trail system and could close non-motorized or motorized routes designated under the Steens Mountain Travel Management Plan.

Eric Haakenson, CRP project lead, said, “Anyone interested in the future of recreation on Steens Mountain should give the CRP a read. The plan analyzes a number of things that could change or enhance your recreation experience in the area. We welcome any input – positive or critical – on the proposed activities and facilities.”

All documents pertaining to the CRP are available in hard copy at the BLM Burns District Office at the address listed below, online at www.blm.gov/or/districts/burns/plans/index.php, and at the Harney County Library, 80 W D St, Burns. If you have comments, questions or input regarding the EA, submit them postmarked by May 3, to Eric Haakenson, Outdoor Recreation Planner:

By mail: Burns District Bureau of Land Management, Attn: Eric Haakenson, 28910 Hwy. 20 West, Hines, OR 97738.

Email: ehaakens@blm.gov

Fax: 541-573-4411.

After consideration of your constructive, substantive comments, a decision outlining the action(s) to be taken within the scope of the EA will be developed and issued. For further information about the Steens Mountain CRP, or to have your name added to the project mailing list, contact the CRP Project Lead at 541-573-4400.


Tyler Opie

Tyler Opie

Two Harney County high school seniors have been selected to participate in Oregon’s 62nd annual East-West Shrine All-Star Football Game at 4 p.m. Saturday, Aug. 2, at Bulldog Stadium in Baker City.

Tyler Opie of Crane Union High School and Seth Nonnenmacher of Burns High School have been selected to the East team for this year’s game.

The Oregon East-West All-Star game selects graduating seniors only from 4A, 3A, 2A, and 1A high schools. Currently (2014) there are 45 4A high schools, 36 3A, 32 2A, and 50 1A OSAA sanctioned high schools from which the teams are composed.

Leagues are further organized into two teams, the West Team consisting primarily of schools located west of the IS-5 corridor and the East Team consisting of schools located east of the IS-5 corridor.

There are exceptions where schools located east of the IS-5 corridor are placed in leagues where the majority of schools are located west of the IS-5 corridor in order to balance the league. The same is true for a couple schools located west of the IS-5 corridor who are assigned to leagues where the majority of schools are located east of the IS-5 corridor.

Player nomination and balloting

There are currently 163 high schools in the pool from which players are selected for the East-West All-Star Game. Sixty players are selected from these high schools to make up the two 30-player teams, together with two 30-man alternate rosters from which players are drawn to replace players who are disqualified, withdraw, or otherwise cannot play in the game.

Seth Nonnenmacher

Seth Nonnenmacher

At the conclusion of each high school football season, ballots are sent to each of the high schools from which players are selected, addressed to either the head coach or the athletic director, as the school may desire.

At the time the ballots are sent to the high schools, a notice is sent to each Shrine Club and each delegate, informing them that the ballots have been sent to the high schools. Each Shrine Club should then contact high schools in their jurisdiction to insure the ballot was received and to answer any questions the head coach or athletic director may have regarding the balloting process or the game.

The head coach or athletic director may nominate as many players as he wishes from his team on his ballot. The head coach or athletic director may also nominate a player from another team within his league whom he feels worthy of nomination.

With respect to nomination of a player from another league team, no matter how many ballots nominate a player, that player will not be selected unless the head coach or athletic director for his respective school nominates him on that school’s ballot.

Prerequisites for selection of players and alternates for the Oregon East-West All-Star Football Game naturally includes athletic ability and football skills, however coaches and athletic directors are encouraged to also consider each nominee’s character, citizenship, and his scholastic record.

Keep in mind that each player in the Oregon East-West All-Star Football Game not only represents the Shriners who stage the game and the Shriners Hospitals to which the net proceeds from the game go, but the high school that nominates him to be their all-star player.

In the balloting process, nominees are not categorized as player or alternate. The association makes no such distinction. Consideration is given only to each nominee’s potential to fill a position as well as his attitude, his character, and his availability to attend training camp and play in the all-star game when scheduled.

During the selection process, players and alternates are selected for their ability with relation to the position to be filled. Another consideration is to insure that schools that have not had a player picked for several years be given first consideration in player selection.

The general manager collects the ballots initiated by each high school head coach or athletic director, verifies that all prerequisites are met, that all paperwork is in order, and that each nominee will be available to participate in the training camp and play in the game as scheduled.

A date is set in January for the selection of players and alternates. The coaches selected for the game meet, receive an orientation about the selection process from the general manager, then separate into a West Team selection caucus and an East Team selection caucus. Assisted by their respective team managers and assistants, the coaches select players based on a formula that provides for a proportionate number of positions on their team from the four classifications.


Wednesday March 19

Posted on March 19th in Community Calendar

Harney County Court meets the first and third Wednesday of each month at the Harney County Courthouse, 450 N. Buena Vista, at 10 a.m.

The Hilander Booster Club meets the third Wednesday of each month at noon at Glory Days Pizza.

Harney Partners for Kids and Families meets the third Wednesday of each month at noon at Glory Days Pizza. Lunch is provided; please RSVP to Carol Sawyer, president, 541-573-6886.

Harney Grant Babe Ruth board meets the third Wednesday of each month in the courthouse basement meeting room, 450 N. Buena Vista, at 7 p.m.

Burns Elks Lodge, 118 N. Broadway, meets the first and third Wednesday of each month at 7:30 p.m.

Non-denominational Bible services are held Wednesdays at 7:30 p.m. at Hines City Hall. Ministers are Jane Buell and Cheryl Emborg.

Free cardio-kick classes are offered Wednesday evenings, from 5:30 p.m. to 6:30 p.m., at Faith Baptist Church. The classes are good for beginning to moderate workouts, and everyone is welcome. For more information call 541-573-7777.

Living Well With Chronic Conditions Wednesday, March 19, from 9:30 a.m. to noon at the Harney County Veteran’s Clinic: Learn to successfully manage symptoms of chronic conditions like asthma, depression, diabetes, heart problems and others with the fifth class in this six-week series. For more information contact Harney District Hospital’s Amy Dobson, 541-573-8318 or Michelle Steinbeck, 541-573-3339.

Be a quitter…a tobacco quitter, that is! Join this support group to develop strategies to quit successfully and access all the resources available to help you. The support group will meet each Wednesday, from 5:30 p.m. to 7 p.m. in the Harney District Hospital board annex conference room. For more information, contact Harney District Hospital’s Jamie Blute at 541-573-8342.

Bring babies to Lapsit Storytime at Harney County Library, 80 W. D St., each Wednesday at 10 a.m. Enjoy music, stories, rhymes and fingerplays especially for babies and toddlers.

Storytime for preschoolers is scheduled at the Harney County Library, 80 W. D St., each Wednesday at 10:30  a.m. Contact the Harney County Library for more information, 541-573 6670.

A Women’s AA meeting is held every Wednesday at noon at Foursquare Church, 74 S. Alvord, Burns.

Alcoholics Anonymous meets each Wednesday at 7 p.m. at Foursquare Church, 74 S. Alvord, Burns.

ALANON, a support group for friends and families of alcoholics, meets each Wednesday from 5 p.m. to 6 p.m. at Foursquare Church, 74 S. Alvord, Burns. Please use the back door on the south side of the building. All interested are welcome.


Thursday March 20

Posted on March 19th in Community Calendar

Harney County Merchants meet the third Thursday of each month at 8 a.m. at the community center.

Burns Planning Commission meets the third Thursday of each month at Burns City Hall, 242 S. Broadway, at 7 p.m.

Harney County Historical Society meets the third Thursday of each month at the Elks Lodge, 118 N. Broadway, at 11:45 a.m. This month’s program will focus on the history of Seneca.

Free income tax preparation and assistance is available for taxpayers age 60+ and low and middle-income taxpayers of any age through the AARP Tax-Aide program. Trained volunteers will be available from 9 a.m. to 3 p.m. each Tuesday and Thursday, until April 15. at the Harney County School District No. 3 administrative office to prepare tax returns or assist with questions. For more information, call Sam Caizza at 541-573-3262.

Chamber Music Bell Choir, meets each Thursday at 6:30 p.m. at St. Andrew’s Episcopal Church, 393 W. A St. Bell ringers are being recruited. For information call Carol Sawyer, 541-573-6886.

A Walking Class is held each Monday, Tuesday and Thursday from  10:30 a.m. to 11:30 a.m. indoors at the Harney County Senior and Community Services Center.

Kiwanis Club of Burns-Hines meets for a no-host luncheon at noon each Thursday at Bella Java, 314 N. Broadway in Burns.

Take Off Pounds Sensibly meets at noon each Thursday at Hines City Hall, 101 E. Barnes. Call 541-573-2896.

Alcoholics Anonymous holds an open, big book and discussion meeting each Thursday from 3 p.m. to 4 p.m. at the Church of the Living Water.


Friday March 21

Posted on March 19th in Community Calendar

Oregon Old Time Fiddlers, District 9, meets the first, third and fourth Friday of each month. Call Micky, 541-573-2515, for time and place.

Reading Club meets at the Harney County Library each Friday from 9 a.m. to 10 a.m. Open to 2nd- through 5th-grade students. For more information, call 541-573-6670.

A recovery group, “Celebrate Recovery,” meets each Friday at the Harney County Church of the Nazarene, 311 Roe Davis Ave. in Hines. Dinner is served at 5:30 p.m. The main meeting is held at 6 p.m. and small group sessions are at 7 p.m. For more information, call 541-573-7100.

Alcoholics Anonymous meets each Friday at Symmetry Care at 5 p.m.


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