News and Opinion from Sisters, Oregon

Articles written by Bonnie Malone


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  • Foster parent heroes in our midst

    Bonnie Malone|Updated Mar 17, 2020

    From a desire to have a daughter to join their two sons, Shellie Souza’s life took a turn that the best of us would find incredibly challenging. With her husband, Brad, theirs is a story of changing 102 young lives. At the end of a quiet lane of dirt and pine needles in a serene country setting is the home of the Souzas, where foster children have found a place of solace and security. When they still lived in California, the Souzas wanted to adopt a girl. Through a myriad of loops, they were convinced to foster two boys. This... Full story

  • Rodeo volunteers aid Sisters causes

    Bonnie Malone|Updated Aug 28, 2019

    An auction raised $4,200 for a local charity and youth program at the annual Sisters Rodeo Appreciation Party on August 17. Nearly 200 guests — who were being thanked for their volunteer work — were pumped up for the prizes offered. A striking quilt donated to the rodeo by Sandy Strader of Sisters brought in $3,500 after a rousing bidding process. The quilt is made from over 100 Crown Royal bags. The surgical nurse was thrilled when she learned her quilt funds... Full story

  • Dinner celebrated food, human connections

    Bonnie Malone|Updated Jul 2, 2019

    Splitting Aces Livestock hosted an Anthony Bourdain Day Dinner on the Ranch on June 25, serving their own grass-fed livestock and produce from Seed to Table. In boundless enthusiasm, the evening was reminiscent of an old-fashioned tent revival. This time it was about food. The bustling cooks and servers infected every guest with a passion for local, heathy, and naturally grown food. The 50 assembled guests were selected by a social media lottery to enjoy this fresh, on-site... Full story

  • Tehan will be Rodeo Grand Marshal

    Bonnie Malone|Updated Mar 20, 2019

    Sisters Rodeo has chosen Sisters legendary songbird Peggy Clerf Tehan as the 2019 Grand Marshal of the Sisters Rodeo Parade. Tehan, a 35-year resident of Sisters, sang the National Anthem at every rodeo performance for 29 years. Her pure soprano voice impressed Rodeo President Glenn Miller, who first asked her to sing the anthem in 1989. She saddled up, performing a cappella on horseback for all but one rodeo in the ensuing years. During her first performance, Peggy left her... Full story

  • Cornett selected as Sisters Rodeo Queen

    Bonnie Malone|Updated Oct 2, 2018

    The 2019 Sisters Rodeo Queen is Riann Cornett of Bend. She was selected on Sunday, September 23, from six highly qualified candidates to represent Sisters Rodeo in the Columbia River Circuit Rodeos and other rodeos. Riann is a Bend native, a 2016 graduate of Bend High School. She is the current Crooked River Roundup Queen and a 2016 Jefferson County Fair and Rodeo Princess. The active equestrian was dual enrolled at Mountain View High School to qualify for membership in Bend... Full story

  • Sisters Rodeo draws the best in the West

    Bonnie Malone|Updated Jun 5, 2018

    Three hundred eighty-four professional cowboys and cowgirls will compete for $10,000 purses in each event in the 78th annual Sisters Rodeo beginning June 6 and running through June 10. There will also be 69 members of the Professional Wild Horse Racers Association participating in their three-man competition at "The Biggest Little Show in the World." Sisters Rodeo has one of the largest purses in the nation in June, which entices cowboys and cowgirls to travel from all over the nation to take their chances in America's... Full story

  • Contractors make rodeo into a big show

    Bonnie Malone|Updated May 29, 2018

    Sisters Rodeo has a knack for bringing the best of professional contractors to town, a team that makes the rodeo's famous fast pace attract fans from across the nation. "There is a chemistry and atmosphere at Sisters that you just don't find at other rodeos," said Jason Buchanan, a rodeo sound man, who has been producing music at Sisters for 16 years. "The crowd gets so involved, which makes the event that much more exciting. "Sisters gave me my first shot at sound," Buchanan... Full story

  • Volunteers make rodeo ticket office go

    Bonnie Malone|Updated May 23, 2018

    Selling tickets for Sisters Rodeo is a fun, challenging and rewarding full-time job for an all-volunteer crew. Ticket sales begin in December and reach a crescendo in these final weeks before the rodeo. "It's a dance where we all learn to dance around each other," said Katie Martin, one of the primary people in the ticket office. Sometimes there are as many as five people in the office to take calls, fill orders and mail tickets. Laughter is the theme of the day on those... Full story

  • Protecting animal athletes in rodeo

    Bonnie Malone|Updated May 30, 2017

    There is no organization more cautious and critical when it comes to animal welfare than the Professional Rodeo Cowboys Association. The PRCA has set the standard of livestock care since 1949. Many fans and non-fans of the sport of rodeo are concerned about the possibility of injury to livestock that is used in rodeo without having the knowledge of the actual life of a rodeo animal. These animals are athletes, bred and groomed for their careers in rodeo. They are of enormous financial value to the stock contractors who own... Full story

  • Kallberg will be Rodeo grand marshal

    Bonnie Malone|Updated Apr 4, 2017

    Curt Kallberg has been selected as the Grand Marshal of the 2017 Sisters Rodeo Parade. The former wild horse racer, current auto racer and contractor is a man who thrives on action and speed, ready to do what it takes to get something done. In Sisters, Kallberg became a whirlwind in a town that had stopped shrugging its shoulders in accepting the inevitable, to become a community that instead takes action and conquers. The timing of his move to Sisters was part of that... Full story

  • Sisters says goodbye to a pioneer

    Bonnie Malone / Jim Cornelius|Updated Jan 31, 2017

    Dorro Sokol, Sisters rancher, aviator, planning commissioner, Rotarian and rodeo stalwart, died last week at her home on Pine Meadow Ranch, at the age of 90. "She died with four generations in the room," her daughter Cris Converse told The Nugget. Sokol, who moved to Sisters in 1971, was an influential community-member who watched a town of about 400 residents grow into the thriving, diversified small city it has become. "People ask me if I'm not disappointed in the growth of... Full story

  • 'Hillbilly sheepherder' looks to the stars

    Bonnie Malone|Updated Jan 19, 2016

    A young Ken Robbins was foiled early in life with every future he dreamed. Yet, at almost 92, his life is filled with wonder, having found new opportunity beyond every closed door. His work will bring him to Sisters as a guest at the Sisters Science Club presentation by Scott Fisher, professor of astronomy at the University of Oregon on January 26. (See announcements, page 12.) Robbins, a civil and geotechnical engineer, consulted on the construction of six Portland-area... Full story

  • Sisters remembers Edith Leithauser

    Bonnie Malone|Updated Dec 15, 2015

    "She was the first person I met when we moved here, and wanted to know everything about me," said a 50-year resident of Sisters and friend of Edith Leithauser. That was Edith's style. There was never a more friendly, happy, or interested person in Sisters history. The character of Maude, in the 1970s cult movie "Harold and Maude" could have been inspired by Edith Leithauser. "You really like people, don't you, Maude?" asked Harold. Maude looked at him with an impish grin and... Full story

  • Lodge at Suttle Lake sold to Portland development company

    Bonnie Malone|Updated Oct 13, 2015

    On October 4, with a classic pastel sky glowing brilliantly as the sun set over the west end of the lake, Ronda Sneva locked the doors of The Lodge at Suttle Lake for the last time. The collage of colors reflected the emotions of the founder and owner of the landmark lodge that she built and opened in 2005. "It is like the old saying, the best day for a boat owner is when you buy it and when you sell it," she said. The lake and the lodge are full of family and recreational... Full story

  • Sisters church will take on Ice Bucket Challenge

    Bonnie Malone|Updated Aug 25, 2015

    After last year's dynamic ALS Ice Bucket Challenge throughout the nation and world, the ALS Association has decided to make this an annual August event. Shepherd of the Hills Lutheran Church is planning to repeat the Ice Bucket Challenge on August 30, starting at 11 a.m. The church raised over $1,200 last summer, when two ice bucket volunteers morphed into 15 candidates in less than a week. Aubrey McCauley, Portland-based ALS director, will talk about the disease in lieu of re... Full story

  • How Sisters became Sisters

    Bonnie Malone|Updated Apr 28, 2015

    In 1970, Sisters was a quiet, hamlet - a blip in what was once a major east-west interstate highway. It was almost a company town. There were a few small groceries and restaurants, several small retail businesses and the landmark Hotel Sisters, which was becoming as tattered as an old saloon hostess and was no longer open for business. The town was basically a pit stop. Brooks Camp was one of the biggest neighborhoods in the small town, home to families of loggers who cut... Full story

  • Approve medical marijuana dispensaries

    Diane Goble, Bonnie Malone, Gary Miller and Susan Stafford|Updated Oct 28, 2014

    It is important for Sisters voters to understand there are two distinctly different marijuana-related measures on the ballot this year. Local Measure 9-101 is specific to the city of Sisters and asks simply whether to permit legally licensed medical marijuana dispensaries to be located within the city limits. State Measure 91 asks a totally different question - shall the recreational use of marijuana be allowed in the state of Oregon, in addition to the already-allowed medical uses. As members of the city-appointed committee... Full story

  • Lodge at Suttle Lake to close for winter season

    Bonnie Malone|Updated Oct 21, 2014

    In the wake of a flooding disaster last winter that resulted in the closure of The Boathouse Restaurant adjacent to The Lodge at Suttle Lake, owner Ronda Sneva attempted to restore dining service for patrons of the popular restaurant. Dining was moved into the lodge, where the restaurant staff worked diligently to maintain the quality of service patrons had experienced over the last nine years. The lodge and cabins continued to be a popular destination resort throughout the year. This October, Sneva chose to follow the... Full story

  • The life of a rodeo animal athlete

    Bonnie Malone|Updated May 27, 2014

    The animals in rodeo live a pretty fine life, often better than their counterparts on ranches or small hobby farms. From the calves that are roped in tie-down roping to the bucking horse with over a decade of experience in the rodeo circuit, animals in rodeo have an injury rate that is many percentage points below that of bovines in feed lots and on the open range, or horses on trails or in other forms of competition. Rodeo stock is evaluated by licensed veterinarians at every stage of their work experience. They travel in... Full story

  • Search-and-rescue saves the day

    Bonnie Malone|Updated Apr 22, 2014

    Everyone loves a happy ending, which is often dependent on people who volunteer their time, skills and strength to rescue someone from misfortune. I carefully planned my horse ride on April 19, picking a trail that was safe. I had a new puppy and horses without shoes. The Windigo Trail north of USFS Road 1514 was just right, a favorite trail that I've been riding for over 30 years. The horses and I skirted a muddy section of the trail, a normal routine in the spring, until... Full story

  • Homer Shaw celebrates 100 years

    Bonnie Malone|Updated Jan 21, 2014

    Homer Shaw arrived in Sisters in 1919 on a horse, following his family's horse-drawn buggy. He was five years old. On Saturday, January 19, his birthday celebration at Sisters Rodeo grounds was a living museum of the history of Sisters. Shaw graduated from Sisters High School in 1932. He had already worked on many local ranches, including the Leithauser Ranch on Camp Polk Road and the Lazy Z at the southeast end of Sisters. He became a logger with Barclay Logging, skidding log... Full story

  • Governor signs Jenna's Law

    Bonnie Malone|Updated Sep 24, 2013

    Jenna's Law was signed by Governor John Kitzhaber on September 16 in a ceremony at the Capitol in Salem. Nine members of Jenna Sneva's family were present with the young woman, who started a campaign to protect all young athletes from brain trauma more than three years ago. As he entered the room, Kitzhaber, a medical doctor, said, "This is long overdue." "It felt so unreal as the governor was signing," Sneva said, "but it also feels like such a relief to know that other... Full story

  • Marcus is crowned Miss Rodeo Oregon

    Bonnie Malone|Updated Aug 20, 2013

    Sara Marcus was chosen as Miss Rodeo Oregon 2014 on Saturday, August 17, at the Clackamas County Fair and Rodeo in Canby, Oregon. The 21-year-old Sisters High School graduate was the 2012 Sisters Rodeo Queen. This year, she is on the rodeo circuit as Miss NPRA (Northwest Professional Rodeo Association) and previously served as Spray Rodeo Queen. The dedicated, hard-working woman began her quest to become Sisters Rodeo Queen when she was a Pee Wee Rodeo princess in 2007. She co... Full story

  • Sisters woman is a 'llama wrangler'

    Bonnie Malone|Updated Jul 23, 2013

    "Fifteen years ago, if someone had said I was going to be a 'llama wrangler,' I'd have thought it was insane," says Lori Ketchum, as she feeds grain to the 10 llamas who live at the Best Western Ponderosa Lodge on the west end of Sisters. She dedicates much of her life to the care of 20 llamas that don't belong to her. It is an assignment of the heart. Ketchum is the principal broker of Cold Springs Commercial Properties, including administrative assistance at the Best... Full story

  • Concussion bill passes Oregon Legislature

    Bonnie Malone|Updated Jun 18, 2013

    A Sisters woman's quest to protect youth athletes from the ravages of concussions sparked a new law in the state of Oregon. Senate Bill 721, "Jenna's Law," was approved by the Oregon House of Representatives on Monday, June 10. The law protects child athletes in sports programs outside of school who have suffered concussions. The bill was revised by the House to give legal protection to coaches and referees who volunteer in youth sports, therefore requiring a second vote in the Senate, which passed it on June 11. The bill now... Full story

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