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Thanksgiving brings a big turkey in 1972, School uses surplus land for experimental farming and education in 1947


November 23, 1922

A director of a London dairy company told a correspondent recently at a dairy show a circumstance illustrating a belief that existed not long ago in connection with a cow's milk.

It was in the days when many London dairies kept a few cows at the back of the establishment, partly to give the impression that the daily milk supply was all derived from these cows, or to enable the proprietor to meet the wants of his customers in special cases for infant feeding. The shop had been closed for the day, when a woman called to ask for new milk for a baby. This was supplied.

Shortly after the woman called again and asked: "Can you tell me the color of the cow you took that milk form?" The owner of the establishment said he was not quite sure but would go and see. He went and returned saying: "It was a black cow, but why do you want to know?"" Well sir," she replied, "If it had been a red cow my mistress would have asked you to change the milk, as the baby would then have red hair, and she does not want that."


November 20, 1947

John L. Gary, a field representative of the U.S. office of education, after he had joined James Vibbert and Carl Rhoda, respectively chairman of the Madras Union High School district board and superintendent of the union high school, in inspecting 84 acres of surplus land at the Madras airbase Monday, gave the school officials an assurance that their application for acreage will be quickly granted when his report reaches the War Assets Administration.

Rhoda explains that the land is desired for an experimental farm for use in instructing GI classes in farm training and for general development of the school's Smith-Hughes agricultural work. The farm will be directed by Leno V. Christensen, in charge of agricultural classes of the high school. The school has purchased a surplus building at the airbase, and a contract for moving it to the experimental plot has already been awarded to the Adler Construction Co., Rhoda reported.

Gary while here complimented the local school authorities for their steps toward acquiring the property. Experimental irrigation farming as well as dryland methods will be in the test plots, it was stated.


November 23, 1972PIONEER FILE PHOTO - Darin, 4, and Lowell, 5, Heydon hold up a 20 pound 10 ounce turkey for 
Thanksgiving 1972. The boys held up the biggest turkey that could be 
found in town.

Big turkey for Thanksgiving is the aim of these two lads, who hold between them a 20-pound-10-ounce gobbler. They are Darin, 4, left, and Lowell, 5, sons of Mr. and Mrs. Steve Heydon. The Heydon household may not actually need a turkey this big. The picture was set up with two small boys and the biggest turkey the photographer could lay his hands on.


November 26, 1997

If you can't afford a swimming pool, start with a water park.

That is the idea behind an application submitted by Ralph Plantz, youth activity coordinator for the local Community Youth Activity Project (CYAP). The application seeks an $80,000 grant from Central Oregon Regional Strategies to help build a $325,083 water playground in Madras.

Water playgrounds, which have been growing in popularity across the U.S., are shallow-water pools filled with large mechanical water toys that offer waterfalls, rain drops, sprays, and splash buckets for adults and children to play in.

They can be constructed for $200,000 to $300,000 rather than $2 to $3 million, are a draw for families and tourists, and bring in more revenue than swimming pools.

"They are built along side of a community pool to make the pool financially stable," Plantz said, noting some places saw their attendance increase by 55 percent.

"Water parks have brought families back because adults come with their kids. And since the sides go from zero to 18 inches of water people in wheelchairs can use them," Plantz added.

The Bean Foundation in Madras has already pledged three acres of property on A Street and additional funds towards the project, but the pledge is contingent upon CYAP obtaining a Regional Strategies grant and Jefferson County committing to operating the water park for at least five years.

CYAP estimates the water park would cost approximately $52,000 per year to operate, and $273,000 to construct. Of that, the water playground equipment only costs $109,000 for water toys, the shallow pool, decks and fencing. The balance of the construction cost is for the building of a parking lot, restroom, lockers, concession stands, and a ticket booth. CYAP already has the plans for a water playground which was built in North Carolina.

If an $80,000 Regional Strategies grant is obtained, CYAP must raise an additional $80,000 in matching funds. By using the Bean Foundation property as an in-kind donation, Plantz said they already have more than $80,000 in matching funds.

Plantz said such a facility would draw tourists to Madras and create 14 new jobs for lifeguards, cashiers, food servers, a park host, and maintenance/grounds workers.

An additional 12 jobs, already held by part-time recreation leaders working in the after-school Kaleidoscope program, and Plantz job as youth activity coordinator would be retained, for a total of 27 jobs created and retained.

A business plan for the water park figures admission fees of $3 for adults, and $2 for youth would be charged to generate $52,000 a year in revenue. It is expected there would be at least 20,850 visits to the water park each year.

The experience of Plantz is a plus in this proposal. Before coming to Madras he helped design and build a large family water park in California, then managed it for two years after its construction.

The abundance of tourists traveling on U.S. Highways 26 and 97 attracted to Madras by the water park would boost motel, restaurant and other businesses in the area, Plantz pointed out.

Numerous attempts have been made over the years to build a local swimming pool, but the large cost was always an obstacle.

CYAP and the Bean Foundation feel this goal could finally be realized by approaching it in four smaller phases, rather than one all-or-nothing project.

Plantz said phase I would be a water park, which would help generate money to eventually build phase II, an outdoor swimming pool. Phase III would be the addition of water slides, and finally phase IV would cover the pool for year-round use.

"It would all be self-supporting until we get to phase IV," Plantz said.

At that point, CYAP would expect to have formed a parks and recreation district and would need to ask for an increased tax rate to run the facilities.

If a Regional Strategies grant is approved, CYAP hopes to start construction in January 1999 and complete it by June.

"We don't have to wait until we have the money for it all. You start with a water park and generate money and interest," Plantz observed.

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