News and Opinion from Sisters, Oregon

Articles written by T. Lee Brown


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  • Creativity summer camps inspire

    T. Lee Brown|Updated Jul 2, 2024

    Ayla is an SFF creativity camper who lives all the way in Colorado. "I was nervous for my first camp," she texted, "but the instructors were awesome and fun. When I went in, I was interested in guitar, and when I left, it was my passion." Thanks to the growth and community commitment of Sisters Folk Festival, whose parent organization now goes by the name SFF Presents, Sisters offers robust arts and music programming for youth in the summer - particularly for a town of its siz... Full story

  • Sisters Makers debuts with grand opening on Friday

    T. Lee Brown|Updated Jun 25, 2024

    Creative-minded entrepreneurs, rejoice. A new nonprofit is forming in town, offering downtown office and studio space along with ambitious plans for resources and events. Sisters Makers kicks off with a Grand Opening this Friday, June 28. With the help of local partners and supporters, a makers group spearheaded by Shannon Thorson secured a discounted lease on the City of Sisters-owned building at the corner of North Spruce Street and East Main Avenue, the former Chamber of... Full story

  • Synergy and collaboration fuel Sisters Makers

    T. Lee Brown|Updated Jun 25, 2024

    "It is super exciting to see this sense of synergy," said Shannon Thorson. She is the initiator of Sisters Makers, which celebrates its grand opening this week during 4th Friday Artwalk (Click here to see related story.). In the Sisters Country Vision project, published in 2019, the concept of promoting and supporting makers rose to importance. Many artisans, small agricultural businesses, visual artists, and creators of handcrafted goods lacked space, a community gathering... Full story

  • Labyrinth celebrates final summer solstice before Portal change

    T. Lee Brown|Updated Jun 18, 2024

    In 2024, summer solstice falls on Thursday, June 20, in this part of the world. Sisters Community Labyrinth will hold its annual gathering and labyrinth walk that evening. Typically light in tone and nonreligious in nature, the gathering will have another layer this year: it's the last solstice walk before the land is built out. "Marking the summer solstice with a community labyrinth walk has become a special tradition," Sharlene Weed said. "It will be our last walk together... Full story

  • Local theater artists hit the boards

    T. Lee Brown|Updated Jun 18, 2024

    Three actors and their director took to a back porch overlooking Whychus Creek last week to rehearse a miniature one-act play. Wind rustled through the treetops. Birds chirped. "I will be playing a hypochondriac named Helen who is in the emergency room, waiting to be seen," actor Kathy Mahony explained. The play is part of an evening of short one-acts called "Now You're Talking," taking place June 20–23. Sisters-based nonprofit organization Silent Echo Theater Company is c... Full story

  • Outdoor concert to grace Black Butte Ranch this month

    T. Lee Brown|Updated Jun 11, 2024

    In A Landscape: Classical Music in the Wild brings its outdoor concert series to Black Butte Ranch this week, June 18–19. Founder, artistic director, and performer Hunter Noack will play a 1912 Steinway grand piano in a meadow, attended by casually dressed concertgoers on picnic blankets rather than the formal, expensive venues where classical music is often played live. With vast backdrops of lakes, deserts, and skies, the unusual concert settings of In a Landscape might t... Full story

  • In the Pines: Are you guys OK?

    T. Lee Brown|Updated Jun 4, 2024

    Once again, I smell smoke. The shadows landing on the sidewalk carry an amber tint. My friend points out feathery smoke high above us, floating in from what she describes as a 30,000 acre prescribed burn up on the Metolius. We're walking in ClearPine. A plume of smoke arises; it smells like smoldering pine needles. Then it turns dark black, letting off a nasty stink. That was this week. When we left off in the story, here in the column, it was 2017. Click here to see previous... Full story

  • Mornings at the Market to be unveiled June 2

    T. Lee Brown|Updated May 21, 2024

    Fortified by a collaboration with Sisters Makers and a Citizens4Community grant, Sisters Farmers Market will launch its new Mornings at the Market program June 2. Mornings at the Market will engage the Sisters community with programs for kids and adults alike. Some will take place indoors, which is new for the market. According to market manager Willa Bauman, a Fill Your Garden event on Opening Day will feature plant starts and garden-related activities (Click here to see... Full story

  • In the Pines: Walking for charity

    T. Lee Brown|Updated May 21, 2024
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    When I was a kid, there was this fundraiser called the Walkathon. You'd take your piece of physical paper-thick stock, printed with lines to fill in and boxes to tick-and proceed to pester neighbors, relatives, and grownups at church and school. What you wanted from them: a pledge. They'd pledge, say 25¢ for each mile you would walk, filling their name and address on the line provided. You'd plan to walk the whooooole Walkathon. Twenty miles! The money benefited March of Dimes... Full story

  • Sisters Farmers Market revs up for an exciting season

    T. Lee Brown|Updated May 21, 2024

    With new programs, new spaces, and more market days, Sisters Farmers Market will kick off an exciting new season on Sunday, June 2. Locals looking for garden starts-ornamental or edible-will find many plants to choose from on Opening Day. Thanks to partners, including Central Oregon Flower Collective and Sisters Community Garden, "there will be a wide variety of veggie and flower starts available," according to market manager Willa Bauman. New programs and spaces will enliven... Full story

  • A rolling bard gathers no moss

    T. Lee Brown|Updated May 14, 2024

    It was a fine week for music and Shakespeare. Or maybe I should say music and wildly silly theater that riffs on Shakespeare? Music first. My teenaged son joined me for a spirited show at The Belfry, headlined by Anna Moss, also known for her duo Handmade Moments (find my interview with her on the fabulous Interwebs at nuggetnews.com). I asked for his opinion. "I liked the opener, Ian George, with his sentimental folk-rock songwriting style," he said. "I thought that he had a... Full story

  • Anna Moss and the Nightshades bring Amnesty to The Belfry

    T. Lee Brown|Updated Apr 30, 2024

    On May 10, Anna Moss will grace The Belfry stage with The Nightshades. "What separates me from my shadow?" the singer, songwriter, and multi-instrumentalist asks on her new album. Whimsical, bluesy melodies find a sensual groove on Moss' solo debut. Moss spoke to The Nugget from her home in New Orleans, where she was preparing to play several gigs at JazzFest (New Orleans Jazz & Heritage Festival) before heading to Seattle for her West Coast tour. A seasoned performer with a... Full story

  • What I saw

    T. Lee Brown|Updated Apr 30, 2024

    Smoke curls around the knees of the ponderosa trees. It's just a prescribed burn, nothing to worry about, but it sets my nervous system a-twangling. I'm reminded of the Milli Fire in 2017, and the bouts of smoke or fire we've experienced since. Seven years ago, my family was "full-timing"-living in a small travel trailer, traveling and camping. Here is what I wrote then: I saw the sun, a shiny reddish-orange thing, sulking behind a veil of forest fire smoke. I saw two gray... Full story

  • Scottish band wows a packed house

    T. Lee Brown|Updated Apr 23, 2024

    It's a mild Wednesday evening. Warm sun stripes the sidewalk outside an old church in Sisters. "This show is sold out," reads a sandwich-board sign. The church in question is The Belfry, a music venue and creative community center. The show is Breabach, a contemporary Scottish folk group claiming "deep roots in Highland and Island tradition with the innovative musical ferment of their Glasgow base." The audience gets drinks and waits in anticipation. As the five performers... Full story

  • Places Warm & Creative

    T. Lee Brown|Updated Apr 9, 2024

    Not long ago, I sat on a beach. I was warm - too warm, actually, quite hot - so I took a dip in the wide, thunderous ocean. With my family, I navigated the cobbled streets of a beautiful Spanish colonial city center. The trip was a wedding gift to me and my husband, offered long ago. Finally here we were, in a place we love: Oaxaca, México. Incredible architecture divided rooms and corridors with brightly painted walls and black wrought iron. Shaded, cool hallways created... Full story

  • Head lice roam among Sisters students

    T. Lee Brown|Updated Apr 9, 2024

    Head lice are fairly common among school-aged children. Notifying parents of a small outbreak in multiple grades of Sisters School District, nurses called head lice “pesty nuisances.” Sisters Elementary School (SES) nurse Jennifer Morris told The Nugget, “We’ve had off and on cases.” The recent letter or communication that went out to parents occurred “on request of a handful of parents that reached out to me over the last month.” Morris said, “We were hoping spring break wo... Full story

  • Locals sign up for sustainably grown produce

    T. Lee Brown|Updated Mar 19, 2024

    Elizabeth Kirby and her daughter Cora sat in a coffeehouse on a sunny day this week, coloring pictures and talking about veggies. Which were their favorites from Seed to Table farm in recent years? Mom remembered "green kale and purplish-red kale. We made kale chips out of them." Cucumbers with rice vinegar were the winner for Cora, a four-year-old who recently started attending SPRD preschool. "I think she likes those because when I was pregnant with her, I ate tons of... Full story

  • Winter Carnival lit up skies over Hoodoo

    T. Lee Brown|Updated Mar 19, 2024

    It's nighttime at Hoodoo ski area. Intrepid skiers and snowboarders make their way down lighted runs, their silhouettes flittering against a white snow backdrop. Music blasts from speakers. Kids who probably should've been in bed long ago race across the snow, pelting each other with snowballs. They move from awesome snow sculpture to awesome snow sculpture, clambering on sphinxes and other shapes, until the sculptures are worn down, unrecognizable. "Winter Carnival has been... Full story

  • "Dune 2" & the Oregon connection

    T. Lee Brown|Updated Mar 14, 2024

    The hero stands atop a ridge of sand, surrounded by vast desert dunes. The dizzying scene is lit in strange tones of pale orange and amber, shadows spilling everywhere. Wind kicks up the sand. Our hero's cape flaps fetchingly in the wind. Then come the sand worms. On a cold day it can be lovely to escape into another world. My friend and I made two escapes, actually: first we escaped from our walk in the snowy woods into the warm, cozy world of Sisters Movie House. Then,... Full story

  • Kids get wild at Suttle Lake during new camp

    T. Lee Brown|Updated Mar 12, 2024

    It's a Friday. Or a Monday. The school district declares a day off. Parents with jobs, caregiving duties, or medical appointments scramble to find a healthy, fun way for their kids to spend the day. Now there's a new option: Starshine's first No School Day Camp, taking place on the grounds of The Suttle Lodge. The camp will provide a mix of nature immersion and imaginative activities for kids ages 5–11 on Monday, April 22. Guided by an experienced outdoor educator, kids w... Full story

  • Dark Mornings

    T. Lee Brown|Updated Feb 27, 2024

    When I was a little girl, I watched my older brother trudge up our driveway in the black of night. My mom was making breakfast; my brother carried a flashlight. Peering up over the kitchen sink, through the orange and green drapes, I watched his glowing light bob through the trees, up the steep hill to the bus stop. I was excited that someday I, too, would get to go to real school. I, too, would get to carry a flashlight and wander off into the darkness! That must be what... Full story

  • 9 Ways to Gain Media Coverage

    T. Lee Brown|Updated Feb 20, 2024

    “How do I get featured in the media?” It’s a question I hear a lot. Business owners, nonprofits, event producers, entrepreneurs, artists: they all ask. The answers reflect my experience as a freelance writer and editor for approximately four zillion years. I’ve been Senior Editor for a branding and interactive agency in New York; I’ve written restaurant reviews for alternative weeklies. Music and performance critic, horoscope columnist, early Internet content creator,... Full story

  • A gift for the imagination

    T. Lee Brown|Updated Dec 12, 2023

    What if kids could read and focus? Hey, it happens! Magazines for kids, youth, and children of all ages bring them inspiration and knowledge. Reading on paper helps people develop a level of sustained concentration-a skill that comes with fringe benefits for the brain. Undistracted readers develop the ability to think deeply and with focus, enlivening their imaginations. This process gets interrupted by digital news, social media, and video games. More info is available in... Full story

  • Solstice labyrinth gathering celebrates peace and light

    T. Lee Brown|Updated Dec 12, 2023

    A small fire. Cups of steaming hot cocoa. Walking together in silent meditation, contemplating the idea of peace. It’s the little things that help people through the darkest time of the year. Sisters Community Labyrinth will host its annual Winter Solstice gathering and labyrinth walk on Thursday, December 21, the shortest day of 2023. Everyone is invited; there is no charge to attend, and no religious affiliation is involved. Sharlene Weed came up with the theme: peace. ... Full story

  • Reading the good stuff

    T. Lee Brown|Updated Dec 5, 2023

    Back in the day, the average person did not have access to the Internet. Back in the day, if you wanted to read about someone else's experience of life, observe beautiful photography-or groovy fashions, handy recipes, the latest developments in popular mechanics - you had to consult a magazine. For those unfamiliar with the concept, a magazine consists of pieces of paper printed with words, artwork, cartoons, and photography, bound together. Less imposing than a book, a... Full story

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