An iconic Powell Butte tradition
The fundraiser in Powell Butte is a tradition that is embraced by much of the local community. Even if locals aren't members of the Powell Butte Christian Church, they can help with the festivities.
Clay Penhollow, an elder of the Powell Butte Christian Church, and Chairman of the Lord's Acre Committee, gave some insight into the history of the tradition.
"It was originally started to help finance and build the facility (original part of church)," explained Penhollow. "They always tithed to missions on those dollars, before they did anything else."
He added that they also bought pews, and in later years, a significant portion was put towards mission work and Bible College scholarships for those going into the ministry. The remainder is used for large improvements such as roofs, flooring, and the purchase of the parsonage. They have also used funds for vans and buses for the church.
DeVere (D.L.) Penhollow, Clay Penhollow's grandfather, was asked to come and serve as the Powell Butte church minister in 1943. Nellie Bussett came to their farm in Redmond to ask him if he would come and be the minister for the church in Powell Butte. Bussett Road in Powell Butte is named after the Bussett family.
D.L. Penhollow accepted, and remained in Redmond while serving the church. He retired in 1986. He was also county commissioner and county judge in Deschutes County for a number of years.
In the late 1940s, the church was outgrowing the facility. One of the congregation members found an article from a church in the Carolinas, where they had instituted a project in local and remote areas called "Lord's Acre."
"The idea was to have people dedicate or donate an acre of produce or an acre's production of animals towards the Lord's Acre," indicated Penhollow. "They also had seen where a beef had been cooked in the ground in a pit. So that's how it all got started."
He added that the members started this tradition in the fall of 1947.
"We have some notes of the first year, and they said, "We didn't really know what we were doing, but we just went at it and it turned out perfect."'
Throughout the years, it has changed some, but it is still a community event.
Traditionally, the lunch consists of barbeque beef, lamb and ham. Most is donated, except for the hams. Penhollow indicated that they provide baked potatoes, barbequed baked beans (their recipe), and lots of fixings.
"The day starts off with registration for the race, which is comparatively new. It's the 16th year of the race."
There will be a 10k run and a 5k walk/run. Coffee is on at 7:00 a.m., and the registration begins at 7:30 a.m. The race begins at 9 a.m. Other events also begin at 9 a.m., including the opening of the country store where visitors can find jams, candy and hand-made items. Meat sales also take place at 9 a.m. in the cafeteria, where meat lovers can find the famous Lord's Acre breakfast sausage and local beef steaks, pork chops and lamb chops.
Whole pies, as well as pie slices, are also a favorite, and are sold throughout the day.
The youth will have a booth for those who crave a donut, sweet roll, popcorn or cola. A music concert begins at 10:30 in the worship center in the main building. The main attraction — a barbeque lunch — begins at 11:30 a.m.
At 1 p.m. sharp, the auction begins inside in the school gymnasium. There are handmade quilts, leathercraft items, firewood and hay up for auction.
Penhollow reflected on many political figures who have visited the event over the years, including Hubert Humphrey, Wayne Morris and John F. Kennedy—just prior to his election as president.
"They came through Oregon, and spent quite a bit of time in Oregon," he added of Kennedy's time at the 1959 Lord's Acre sale.
He concluded that all are welcome. There is truly something for everyone at this family-friendly event.
541-548-3066 Powell Butte Christian Church office number
73rd Lord's Acre Sale
Coffee is on at 7 a.m.
Race registration 7:30 a.m., Race begins at 9 a.m.
Country store and meat sales begin at 9 a.m.
Music Concert 10:30 a.m.
Barbecue lunch 11:30 a.m.
Auction begins at 1 p.m.
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