Friday, December 29, 2006

It's been a busy month

Sorry for the lack of updates.

Been a busy month, personally and professionally.

First off, it seems as though the Silverton Appeal and Stayton Mail are not updating their Web pages anymore. If they start posting stories to them again, I will have links to the stories I do for them. Otherwise, you are stuck with what makes the Statesman Journal and

Personally, my Aunt Jean and grandmother passed away in the month of December (a week apart too) so I have spent a large amount of time being with family and making trips to Bainbridge Island where they lived. I will always cherish the summers I had hanging out with both of them. We would go up for a month at a time during the summer and mess around, see sights and walk down to the bay to skip rocks. Good times and I am very sad to see both of them go.

On a more cheerful note, December normally is a pretty slow time for me, so I got to spend a lot of time with Violet. We visited the Oregon Zoo and the Portland Children's Museum, so I put together stories for They can be found here:

Portland Children's Museum (with Violet photos!)

Oregon Zoo

I have also done a number of stories for the Silverton and Stayton papers, but they aren't online.

Have a Happy New Year!


Tuesday, November 28, 2006

Hi RSS feeder type people

I was talking to an old college buddy -- Christina -- and she told me I should turn on RSS feeds for my blog.

So that way when I update it every week you can be notified if you use this mysterious magics known as RSS.

I don't know about that. I am getting old and confused.

Who am I again?

Anyway, Hi Christina!

Tuesday, November 21, 2006

Mount Angel Woodcarver... is from Silverton! Ooops

Well, I like to think I have been fairly accurate during my time as a freelance writer. I usually don't get a lot of complaints, and I have gotten several nice cards.

That's why when things like this happen, I look at what went wrong so next time I can avoid the issues.

I wrote an article about a very nice man, Mike Reifle. He carves these incredible dragons and the story is HERE.

I didn't state in the story what city he was from -- which normally means he is from the city the paper is published in. In this case, Silverton. But the editor thought he was from Mount Angel. So that's where the problem came in.

Normally when you are writing about a community other than the one the paper is published in, you use a dateline. For example:

CANBY -- Patrick and Cindy Johnson are expecting another baby, so they bought a minivan last week.

This coming week there is going to be a correction in the paper and Mr. Reifle was very cool about the whole thing.

"I've always wanted to live in Mount Angel," was his response. Nice guy.

Here is his website, buy some of his carvings. :)

Wednesday, November 15, 2006

Mount Angel FFA

This story was fun, kids starting a new FFA Chapter in one of the centers of agriculture in Oregon. Somehow the chapter had died off, and the kids with their new advisor are bringing it back, even with some pretty major setbacks.

Anyway, HERE is the story -- I really like this one and had a great time writing it.

Hope you enjoy.


Tuesday, November 07, 2006

Better late than never?

Well I was surfing the Internet the other day and I noticed this story was posted on the Statesman -- months after I had written it.

Ruth Stole story

I got a number of favorable comments, so that's cool.

Wednesday, October 25, 2006

Wow, I keep updating people might read this.

Anyway, my last post was for an article that was in the Silverton Appeal, well every so often the Statesman Journal picks up my stories from the Appeal. They edit them some -- editors are like dogs, they don't feel like it belongs to them unless they mark their territory -- and this time they even ran a picture.

Art house Statesman Journal article

That link will only be good for a week, so keep that in mind. :)

Otherwise another Wednesday another couple of news articles got posted in the Silverton Appeal and Stayton Mail.

The first one was a Saturday event called "Unmasking the Arts" in Silverton that raised money for the art association out there. It was fun, although one of the Silverton Art Association board members was a real jerk. I told this person I was from the Appeal and they said, "Go ahead and make up my quotes, that's what the Appeal does anyway."

It never surprises me that people I have never met can be so rude. I usually let it slide, but this person was just a jackass. I gave up a Saturday evening -- Cindy and Violet went to a party I passed on to go to the event -- to cover the arts. Sure I am getting paid for the article, but I did it to make sure the art association got some coverage. Guess I won't be doing that again. I don't need the money that bad. :)

Anyway, enough whining.

Unmasking the Arts ran in the Silverton Appeal

Natural farrier is an article that ran in both the Appeal and the Stayton Mail, so I linked the Mail story.

Have a great rest of week!


Thursday, October 19, 2006

Another news article

Well, I got another news article in the Silverton Appeal. This one is on a Kid's Art House that the Silverton Art Association has almost completed.

It was a fun story and the lady who is running it is quite a character -- very nice.

The other thing to note is that I wrote this story with a full-on head cold.

We are all better here now -- the cold got Cindy, Violet and myself. I think it's because Cindy has been making out with homeless people downtown, but don't tell her I said that. She can kill me in my sleep. :)

Hope you are having a good week.


Monday, October 16, 2006

Well here is a surprise!

Looks like the Statesman is putting up their special sections online faster. So today I have a couple of sections that are live online.

First off is Senior Life, where I got to interview a 100 year old lady and do a story about keeping your mind sharp.

Secondly, is the Women's Show special section. It's mostly just sponsor stories that I did in there.

I have also submitted three more stories for the East Valley Papers, so I may be updating again on Wednesday.

Have a good week!


Thursday, October 05, 2006

Staying busy in Silverton

Sorry about the lack of updates, I have been running around like crazy the last month.

I had a number of articles for the Statesman Journal (all of which probably won't be on the web), and I wrote the biggest newspaper article I have ever done.

The Statesman is starting a new feature where they profile someone in the community who has made a difference. This is an advertising-sponsored feature, so I get to do it. Otherwise the news department would take it and I would be sad.

Anyway, I wrote about 3,000 words on a very interesting lady who lives in Salem. If they put it online I will link it here. I am pretty happy with the story and looking forward to seeing it. It's never amazes me that you can always have new things to learn after 10+ years in your profession. I had never written something that large, so I did a lot of reading of longer features to figure out how to structure it and whatnot.

After I finished the Senior Life, Women Show, RV page and the monster feature, I got a call from the folks out in Silverton. They want me to do some stories for them every week now, so this blog should be updated on a regular basis.

Art on her terms

A good meal worth the journey

The long road home

So, that's me this week. See ya next week.


Wednesday, September 06, 2006

Busy week -- in Stayton

Well this week's Stayton Mail features three stories from me. Which I think is some sort of personal record out there.

Anway, I did a feature story on the Turner Fire District women volunteers.

Then I was dispatched to the Stayton Public Library to do a story on their foundation and history.

All in all, a fun time. I love covering small communities and it's great when they are positive stories to boot.


Saturday, September 02, 2006

I really like this rant

Agree or disagree, I like the writing that went into this rant.

Just thought I would share. I know some of you who read this are very hard-core Republican, but I like to examine all sides of an issue. So I hope you can appreciate the writing if not the message.

Thursday, August 24, 2006

Silverton Fine Arts Festival II -- Art of the rewrite

So, rumor has it that there was a photo page that when with this story. The Gannett papers really haven't gotten into the whole spirit of the Web yet, so you just get another text-filled story.

At some point, when I get some time, I will post some of the photos just to share.

I know that about two people are looking at this, so I will get to it when I can.

You are both important to me. :)


Sunday, August 20, 2006

Silverton Fine Arts Festival

Saturday was really fun.

I got an e-mail last Thursday night from the editor of the Silverton Appeal. He needed me to cover the Silverton Fine Arts Festival on Saturday, and then write a story by 5 p.m. that same day. This is newspaper work.

So, how it works is Cindy, Violet and I run out to Silverton and walk around the festival -- they just go off on their own and leave me to my interviewing and picture taking.

Then, after I think I have enough for 20 inches -- about 700 words -- we run back home and I write it up before 5 p.m. Good times. Then on Monday I will call the organizers for reactions and then re-write the story and submit the news story with pictures on Monday by 5 p.m.

So expect an update later this week with the second version of the same story. I am also thinking about trying to write a different version for -- interviewing the organizers about tips and tricks for people out of state who visit. That's just a thought, though.

Anyway, you can find Sunday's article here. Make sure you give me good reviews at the bottom of the page -- if they think people like me maybe I can get more work with the Statesman Journal news department.

Friday, August 18, 2006

Learn about the Gorge

I know it's been a bit since I updated the blog -- I haven't had a lot of work that has been online to post. Many of my stories have been for the RV page in the Statesman Journal and they don't put those online.

Starting next week I am going to be doing more news for the Silverton Appeal and Stayton Mail -- and So things should be updated more often.

Oh and today Violet saw a picture of Aunt Jean holding her and said: "Grandma Jean."

Anyway, Aunt Jean, my mom, Violet and I also visited the Columbia River Gorge Discovery Center and I put together an article for You can find it here.

Hope you are having a good summer.


Tuesday, August 01, 2006

Is it desert or dessert?

So you know that week it was 100+ degrees? Yeah, well in true Pat fashion, I had a great idea to go to the high desert. I had a couple of stories for and my aunt and mom wanted to see the places too.

We packed in the car and by the time we got to The Dalles, it was in the mid-90s. Nice. Anyway, here is one of the stories for the International Carousel Museum. The other story I did, The Gorge Discovery Center, I am also working on and should have it posted soon.

Been busy with the Statesman Journal RV Page -- which isn't online -- so sorry for the lack of updates. I think all of four people are reading this, so keep checking as more stories will be updated as they come online.

Wednesday, July 19, 2006

Sorry it's been so quiet

Well, lately a lot of my work hasn't been on the Internets. So, there is nothing to link up. I have never been a fan of just random spewing of my thoughts online -- I think it's kind of self-absorbed.

This blog was mostly created so family members could see what I was doing, not for the rantings of a stay-at-home dad/madman.

Anyway, I did a follow up to the Greenhalgh-Johnson story -- about the teacher who has lymphoma and got a stem-cell transplant from her sister. Great people and I wish them well.

Community rallies around local family.

Coming up I will be doing more work for so there should be some updates in the next week or two. They gave me about 11 stories -- so I am going to be jetting around the state playing tourist. Fun job if you can get it!

Thanks, stay safe...


Tuesday, July 04, 2006

Violet makes her Internet debut!

So I finally finished my coast stories for The last one being the Tillamook Cheese Factory.

Make sure when you visit the article to notice Violet petting a fake cow.

Well, explosions are going to happen soon.


Wednesday, June 28, 2006

Two versions of the same story

In the newspaper business, sometimes they have to cut a story down to make it fit. Putting together a newspaper is like a big jigsaw puzzle with stories and photos as the pieces.

Anyway, I did a story on this great family from Silverton. The mom has Lymphoma and the dad is staying up at OHSU with her to help give her care. I totally empathize with these folks and hope that after reading the story you will consider giving them even a modest amount. They are very friendly and kind people.

Stayton Mail version here.

Silverton Appeal version here.

Stay safe,


P.S. I will be posting updates on them as I get them. As a freelancer I am never sure if I am going to be following a story all the way or not. But I am going to keep track of these folks.

Wednesday, June 21, 2006

Turner Training Fire

The Turner Fire District had a training fire last weekend and I was there ... sucking in smoke, getting drenched by water hoses and interviewing volunteer firefighters. Fun times!

Got some great pictures. I will share some once I get some time.

Here is the article that was printed in the Stayton Mail today, with one of my pics.

Stay safe,


What exactly is a Thunderberry?

Find out in this article I wrote for the Silverton Appeal.

Thunderberries rumble into Silverton.

It was a pretty fun event for the first year.

I keep doing motorcycle articles I might have to get one.


Make sure to wash Thunderberries before you eat them.


Monday, June 19, 2006

What doesn't make the paper

Sometimes you really like a picture and it doesn't make the paper. For some reason I liked this shot at the Stayton Intermediate School American Revolution demonstration I covered. The expressions of the kids in the background are priceless.

Thought I would share it.

Don't walk in front of a loaded cannon...


Tillamook Air Museum

Yes, I am still writing stories from my vacation in May. I know, I know -- SLACKER!

Here is the latest article I just finished on the Tillamook Air Museum. Very cool place if you are into airplanes and history.

Violet calls planes, DADO! So she had a field day at museum when we visited.

Stay safe!


Sunday, June 18, 2006

Senior Life

Um, I am not sure anyone is reading this, but it's a useful tool for when I have to do invoices.

So, I am going to keep updating this.

Here is the latest Senior Life and I have two articles in there. I didn't take any pictures for this one. I really like the cover shot -- that's why they have professional photographers!

Stay safe,


Thursday, June 15, 2006

American Revolution Stayton Style

Last week I got to hang out with a bunch of fifth-graders who had an assembly showing them what it was like in the American Revolution.

One of the things I learned is you never walk in front of a loaded cannon. :)

I didn't know it was loaded.


Well, here is the story I wrote, I interviewed some kids -- which is always a good time -- and talked with the teacher and the dudes dressed up as soldiers from that era.

Stayton Intermediate School under attack!

Stay safe -- don't walk in front of loaded cannons.


Wednesday, June 14, 2006

More about Lamb and Wool

Got a chance to do a story on the kids that were selected as the Marion County Lamb & Sheep Court. They get to go around to fairs and events and promote -- you guessed it -- sheep.

So here is the story, I think they are going to put up a photo too, but you never know.

Last week they used four pictures and put one online.

Stay safe,


Wednesday, June 07, 2006

Lamb & Wool Festival news story

Well the freelance thing is feast or famine. One week I am trying to figure out what to do -- while ignoring my work -- and another week I am running around like crazy.

I am doing an RV/ATV/Boating feature for the Statesman Journal every week, but they don't have it online. But the Stayton Mail came calling the other day and I did this story for this week's paper.

Next week I have two more stories for them -- so it's nice to get back out to Stayton.

Marion County Lamb & Wool Festival
This is in the town of Turner, which is really small. It was a cool little festival and it was free -- free parking, free admission, free parade. Very cool -- especially when 50 miles to the north the Portland Rose Festival is going on and you can actually feel the money in your wallet being drawn to downtown Portland carnies.

I will be updating this blog more frequently now that I have some work on the net to post! If the RV section ever gets online, I will make sure to link it too.

Stay safe,


Working Vacation

So last month I went on vacation with Violet, Cindy and our good friend Jen. If we ever win the lottery Jen is going to be our nanny -- Violet loves her.

We spent the week in Lincoln City on the Oregon Coast and while we were there I decided to do some articles. You know, write off the trip and make some cash at the same time. Now, if I could just get an actual vacation... hehehe

Here are the links to the stories I have done.

Historic Nye Beach
This is basically an old downtown that has beach access. The city of Newport is trying to redevelop it so it's more trendy and cool.

Devil's Punchbowl
This is one of the more famous spots on the Oregon Coast. It's an old sea cave that collapsed and made a bowl for the waves to crash in and out of. Pretty cool.

Whale Watching Spoken Here Center
Went whale watching. Was weally wicked. Oh, and Jen is in the picture at the bottom of the article.

I have two more articles that I am working on -- yes I am a bum for not having them done yet. doesn't give me deadlines! ARG! I need deadlines to induce the stress that it takes to get my brain engaged!

Stay safe...


Wednesday, May 24, 2006

2006 Oregon Kids Guide

Well the folks at the Statesman Journal posted the 2006 Oregon Kids Guide on their Web site.

Lately the sections I work on have been hit or miss when it comes to being online. For example, I am doing a weekly RV/Motorcycle/Boat page that never makes it online -- so I rarely see it.

Anyway, this is a project for the Oregon Travel Commission and is put in chambers, visitor centers and attractions throughout the state. I got the opportunity to write and take photos for six of the stories in the magazine.

It's a pretty cool project. A lot of the kids in the book have their lives together more than some of the adults I have interviewed. Here it is, enjoy!

2006 Oregon Kids Guide

Wednesday, May 17, 2006


Well last week I covered a German Richtfest in Mount Angel. In Mount Angel they are all about Bavarian history and, well, drinking.

Each summer they have the Oktoberfest! and the entire downtown looks like a small Bavarian village. They are building a Edelweiss Village with a Glockenspiel (clock tower with carved wooden figures that dance on the hour, every hour) and decided they needed another reason to party.

Enter the Richtfest -- or Christmas in May. They put a tree at the top of the building and wreaths to indicate how good the builder is. One wreath, the builder stinks and has to pay for the party, two wreaths they are decent and three wreaths they rock is how it breaks down. The builder got three wreaths -- shocking I know.

Anyway, I took some photos and wrote two stories on the event. A short one for the Statesman Journal Business page which can be found here.

The other is a larger story with photos (the paper version had several photos and was a nice spread) which can be found here.

Hope all is going well with you.

Off to write about my coast trip...


Wednesday, May 10, 2006

The weak, er week, in names

Well, this week has been challenging. I have had every strange and alternate spelling of names you can imagine. Here is the short list


It's been challenging -- but a long time ago I learned that the FIRST question you ask is: "How do I spell your name?" Then you read it back to them. Nothing destroys your credibility as a newspaper writer faster than getting names wrong. OK, maybe adding a zero to a budget story would, but who likes budget stories?

Anyway, made the front page of the Silverton Appeal this week with a story about a developer and building that are going to be awarded a state-wide award for downtown revitalization. It was fun.

Wolf Building wins award

Stay safe,


Wednesday, May 03, 2006

More East Valley Stories

Sorry for the lack of updates last week. Cindy, Violet and I were at the Oregon Coast hanging out and playing in the sand. Violet discovered that sand doesn't taste good and that it's fun playing with bubbles.

I am contemplating putting up photos of the trip, but I haven't figured it out yet, so maybe I will put up a link to the Shutterfly album we are making.

Anway here are some other East Valley (Silverton and Stayton) stories I have done.

Covered Bridge Coffeehouse
This is a basic new business story and I also shot the photo.

Seniors Drive for Safety
This story was originally written for Senior Life, but they ran out of space and so the Silverton paper picked it up. I also shot the photo for this too.

I have a bunch of new assignments coming up, so I will be updating this as they come online. Over my "vacation" I did a bunch more interviews for and the Statesman is doing a new weekly RV page I am helping to put together.

Stay safe,


Thursday, April 20, 2006 work

Well I have some time this afternoon so I thought I would put some links to my work. is a Web site operated by the folks at the McMinnville News-Register. I started my newspaper career at the N-R designing ads and wrote my first news story for them back in 1995 I think.

Anyway, I have the opportunity to write about destinations to see in Oregon, and when I am on vacation next week I will be doing stories about the Oregon coast. Not a bad gig if you can get it, huh?

Here are the links.

Pittock Mansion

Sea Lion Caves

Silver Falls State Park

Salem Riverfront Carousel

Portland Japanese Garden

Portland Chinese Garden

Mt. Angel Oktoberfest

Columbia River Maritime Museum

Astoria Column

The Grotto

Wednesday, April 19, 2006

Latest stories for Silverton and Stayton

Here are some stories I did this week. As I find the time I will link more of my news work. The papers do archive the stories online and then you have to pay for access so they will drop off the net in about a month.

Edna Rickman Woman of the Year -- Stayton

Ron Lierman Man of the Year -- Stayton

After my dad's incident last month with the ambulance ride, I think this is an important program for anyone who has health issues. I know when the EMTs were asking me questions about my dad, I had no clue what medications he was taking. So I found out that Silverton is starting a Vial of Life program and thought it would be good to write an article about it.

Vial of Life comes to Silverton

I also took the photos for these articles, just FYI.

Oh and if you want to do your own free Vial of Life but don't know who to contact in your community, go here and print out the form. Keep it in your purse of wallet -- I know I am going to fill out one for my dad. :)

Vial of Life national Web site.

Stay safe,


Monday, April 17, 2006

Time to start updating this blog!

So I thought I would start posting the writing I have been doing, so that way I can just give family and friends the address to this site and they can click through to my work. One easy link instead of e-mailing all the links every week.

Anyway, here is the Senior Life section that I work on every two months. This isn't the latest one, but one from February. I took the cover shot (which I liked) and did a number of stories and photos on the inside. In the upper right corner you will see a NEXT PAGE button, just click that and you can see the inside pages.

Statesman Journal February Senior Life 2006

Oh and before I forget, I did the design on the old style of Senior Life (before they changed it for 2006) and I wanted to get an example of that on here, just for giggles. Yes, I am multi-talented, I can write, take pictures and do layout. I took the photos for the cover and all the stories. Wrote most of the stories and designed the original layout of the piece when I was still working for the Statesman.

Statesman Journal December Senior Life 2005

The next section I worked on nwas Women in Business for 2006. It's always a fun section, but this time the press totally screwed up the photos. They actually weren't as bad as they appear in this publication. I have the originals and they look fine. Anyway, I have always touted myself as a better writer than photographer.

Statesman Journal Women in Business 2006

Now we are going old school. The 2005 Oregon Tourism Department's Kids Guide. I put this together when I was still working full time at the Statesman. The new one is due to come out sometime in April, so patience.

Oregon Kids Guide 2005

That's the Statesman Journal work they have online -- lately they have been slow to get sections posted, so not all of my work is up there. As more come online I will link it here.

In the coming days I will try to keep my news work posted too so you can see the weekly work I am doing out in Silverton and Stayton.

Stay safe,